Harvesting Baby Theresa's Organs: Arguments and Ethics
2887 Words12 Pages
James Rachels says that one of the arguments given against harvesting Baby Theresa's organs is "The Argument That We Should Not Use People as Means." What is this argument and in what ways does it rely on deontological ideas and principles? The argument that we should not use people as means is very significant. It is focused on using things and not people. In other words, it is very important to treat people the way we would want to be treated instead of seeing them as disposable commodities that can be thrown away when we are done with them (Vendemiati, 2004). Society is moving toward a focus on self and not on the society as the whole, which is causing people to see others as means to an end instead of individuals who can and should be respected. This is part of the reason for excessive violence and other problems seen today.
However, with Rachels the point was that one person should not be sacrificed in order to be a means to an end for others (Pojman, 2012). This argument is focused on deontological principles that are designed to see each person as an individual. Many people argue that one person should be able to be sacrificed for the greater good of an entire society, but other people feel as though each person is sacred and it is unacceptable to sacrifice a person in order to save other people (Solomon, 1984). By not harvesting Baby Theresa's organs, others cannot be saved by those organs. Using the organs in that way, though, would make the baby a means