Essay about Consequentialism: The Global Poor

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The global poor have been an issue that the world has faced for generations and with the gap between the rich and poor always expanding, we have to ask ourselves the question of “what should we do about it?” and “should we even do something about it?”. In this essay, I will be arguing the moral implications of consequentialism and why Onora O’Neill’s non-consequential view on the subject is more plausible than Peter Singer’s consequential view. I will explain what differentiates Singer and O’Neill’s views and where both their views come together. Consequentialism refers to the idea that what is morally good or bad is all based on the consequences of one’s actions. It is derived from the Theory of Right Action which is a part of…show more content…
According to Singer’s view, the consequences of this action, which would be if the homeless man uses that money on food or shelter to better his life, will determine if the action was good. If the homeless man uses that money on drugs or alcohol, then the action would be considered morally bad. However, not all people agree with Peter Singer’s consequentialist views on the global poor. Onora O’Neill is another notable philosopher who draws from Kantian ethics. She is a non-consequentialist and disagrees with Peter Singer’s views on the global poor. Her belief is that what is considered morally good or bad is based on one’s actions rather than the consequences of their actions. She believes that “Kantians would not need to know all the miserly details of a causal utilitarian scope or the full results of any possible action. Instead, they must have good will, good intentions, and it must be reflected through their actions”( "O'Neill vs. Singer: Utilitarian Famine." ). This means that the results of an action should not determine if that action was morally good or bad, but instead, the intentions of that action should determine it. O’Neill believes that what makes a good man is if that man made an effort to do something good and what makes a bad man is if that man performed an action with bad intentions. An example of this would be if you are walking down the street and you see a homeless man. If you give the homeless man some spare money
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