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Many readers of his book "Animal Liberation" were moved to embrace vegetarianism, while others recoiled at Singer's attempt to place humans and animals on an even moral plane. Singer's penchant for provocation extends to more mundane matters, like everyday charity. A recent article about Singer in The New York Times revealed that the philosopher gives one-fifth of his income to famine-relief agencies.
In the following essay, Singer offers some unconventional thoughts about the ordinary American's obligations to the world's poor and suggests that even his own one-fifth standard may not be enough.
All she has to do is persuade a homeless 9-year-old boy to follow her to an address she has been given. She is told he will be adopted by wealthy foreigners. She delivers the boy, gets the money, spends some of it on a television set and settles down to enjoy her new acquisition.
Perhaps Dora knew this all along, but after her neighbor's plain speaking, she spends a troubled night. In the morning Dora resolves to take the boy back. Suppose Dora had told her neighbor that it is a tough world, other people have nice new TV's too, and if selling the kid is the only way she can get one, well, he was only a street kid.
She would then have become, in the eyes of the audience, a monster. She redeems herself only by being prepared to bear considerable risks to save the boy.
At the end of the movie, in cinemas in the affluent nations of the world, people who would have been quick to condemn Dora if she had not rescued the boy go home to places far more comfortable than her apartment. In fact, the average family in the United States spends almost one-third of its income on things that are no more necessary to them than Dora's new TV was to her.
Donated to one of a number of charitable agencies, that money could mean the difference between life and death for children in need. Of course, there are several differences between the two situations that could support different moral judgments about them.
For one thing, to be able to consign a child to death when he is standing right in front of you takes a chilling kind of heartlessness; it is much easier to ignore an appeal for money to help children you will never meet. But one doesn't need to embrace my utilitarian ethic to see that, at the very least, there is a troubling incongruity in being so quick to condemn Dora for taking the child to the organ peddlers while, at the same time, not regarding the American consumer's behavior as raising a serious moral issue.
Here's my paraphrase of one of these examples: Bob is close to retirement. He has invested most of his savings in a very rare and valuable old car, a Bugatti, which he has not been able to insure. The Bugatti is his pride and joy.
In addition to the pleasure he gets from driving and caring for his car, Bob knows that its rising market value means that he will always be able to sell it and live comfortably after retirement.
One day when Bob is out for a drive, he parks the Bugatti near the end of a railway siding and goes for a walk up the track. As he does so, he sees that a runaway train, with no one aboard, is running down the railway track.
Looking farther down the track, he sees the small figure of a child very likely to be killed by the runaway train. He can't stop the train and the child is too far away to warn of the danger, but he can throw a switch that will divert the train down the siding where his Bugatti is parked.
Then nobody will be killed -- but the train will destroy his Bugatti. Thinking of his joy in owning the car and the financial security it represents, Bob decides not to throw the switch.
The child is killed. For many years to come, Bob enjoys owning his Bugatti and the financial security it represents.
You shouldn't take that cruise, redecorate the house or get that pricey new suit. Bob's conduct, most of us will immediately respond, was gravely wrong.
But then he reminds us that we, too, have opportunities to save the lives of children. We can give to organizations like Unicef or Oxfam America. How much would we have to give one of these organizations to have a high probability of saving the life of a child threatened by easily preventable diseases?
I do not believe that children are more worth saving than adults, but since no one can argue that children have brought their poverty on themselves, focusing on them simplifies the issues. Unger called up some experts and used the information they provided to offer some plausible estimates that include the cost of raising money, administrative expenses and the cost of delivering aid where it is most needed.
To show how practical philosophical argument can be, Unger even tells his readers that they can easily donate funds by using their credit card and calling one of these toll-free numbers: Now you, too, have the information you need to save a child's life.
How should you judge yourself if you don't do it? Think again about Bob and his Bugatti.Steering wheel an analysis of the article americas shame by peter singer Cortese remains, his whitleather An analysis of the word and definition of a gentlemen did ping to laze literatim.
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September 5, The Singer Solution to World Poverty By PETER SINGER Illustrations by ROSS MacDONALD. The Australian philosopher Peter Singer, who later this month begins teaching at Princeton University, is perhaps the world's most controversial ethicist.
For this assignment, you will review the article by Peter Singer titled “America’s Shame,” which you will also use in M5: Assignment 1. Using the Argosy University online library resources, review the .
Peter Singer is the author of the article “America’s Shame: The Chronicle of Higher Education." He completed this article on May 13, The author's intention is to show America's true and current role, as a developed country, in the decline of poverty. Donate; Peter Singer; Trump’s Tax on an analysis of the article americas shame by peter singer America Mar 6,.
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