Famine, Affluence and Morality

Published: 2021-09-13 16:25:10
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Category: Philosophy

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Peter Singer's Famine, Affluence, and Morality, presents the reader with a strong view on the moral values which people all around the world today are giving to the global famine taking currently taking place. Singer tries to influence the reader of this article to take action and offer support for the increased suffering due to famine. In his article, he includes arguments that illustrate the moral importance that should be given to the suffering. Today a majority of the population views contributions as a virtuous action, but do not believe it is wrong not to do it. Singer stresses exactly how wrong it is to know such suffering is happening and not take any actions to help resolve, regardless of the distance between you and the victim and if anyone else is contributing towards the cause. Although Singer makes some strong points, he falls short in a few of his arguments.
Singer begins his article by highlighting the current issue of famine and suffering in East Bengal. His argument begins by compelling the reader to accept the moral premise "that suffering and death from lack of food, shelter, and medical care are bad," and "that if it is in our power to prevent it from happening, without thereby sacrificing anything of comparable moral importance, we ought, morally, to do it" (Singer, 2010 pg.231). Singer then goes on to develop a broad-based approach to his statement by stating "we cannot discriminate against someone merely because he is far away from us" (Singer Famine pg. 232). He emphasizes the fact that distance is not a reason to not do what is morally right pointing out that, the distance between you and the person in need is not a moral justification to disregard their needs.

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