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Why Thomson Thinks It Is Morally Permissible To Kill One to Save the Lives of Five Others (Essay Sample)


Please write a three- to four-page (double spaced, 12 point font, normal margins,
~1000 words) essay on one of the following two topics. Bring a draft of this essay to
tutorial on April 7th for workshopping. Your final essay is due on April 12th.
2. Please submit your essay online through Brightspace! Go to Brightspace 1010Y
Course page, click on “Assignments” folder, click on “Submission” folder, click on
“Essay 3 Submission” (available after Mar 27th). Follow instructions to submit your
3. Do NOT put your name on the paper. Instead use your Banner (B00…) number.
4. Do NOT use a title page.
5. If you quote a passage from a paper we've read, make sure you cite the paper and the
page number. For example, if you quote a passage from page 154 of Hardin's
“Lifeboat Ethics,” cite as (Hardin, 154). Also include a reference list at the end of the
document with all the papers you have cited (you can choose whatever format you'd
like as long as you're consistent). A simple, acceptable example:
Hardin G. Lifeboat Ethics: The Case Against Helping the Poor. Course Textbook.


Why Thomson Thinks It Is Morally Permissible To Kill One to Save the Lives of Five Others
Two conditions under which Thomson thinks it is morally permissible to kill one to save the lives of five others
The standard argument against abortion is that the unborn child is considered as a person, meaning that the fetus has the right to live. Accordingly, Thomson argues that killing one person to save five people is morally accepted. This paper analyzes two conditions that justify why it is justifiable to kill and support the Thomson’s views. Thomson uses different allegory to justify why standard arguments against abortion is inadequate and cannot account for the morality of abortion. Even though abortion is termed as immoral, Thomson explains conditions to support her arguments.
Even if a fetus has a right to life, that does not mean it is wrong to kill it; this can be easily being translated to mean that killing in self-defense is permissible. Thomson argues that the right to live does not guarantee using someone's body against the person`s will (Mahon, 2016). She presents other relevant factors that determine what right someone can have within specific circumstances. She justifies abortion under specific circumstances. For example, she uses analogies to explain why abortion is permitted in the case of rape or situations when the mother`s life is at risk (Montague, 2015).
Thomson uses an analogy to justify her position about why killing five would be worse than killing one. She states an example where a surgeon is overworked because his assistant has been sick. The surgeon is required to take over several duties including dispensing drugs. One day he feels tired and carelessly, making a terrible mistake of dispensing the wrong drugs to five patients (Duncan, 2015).
The drug works differently on different people; it can cause lung failure among other severe effects. The five patients need transplants, which requires killing one young man to save them because of the surgeon's carelessness. Suppose we look at the case differently, if the surgeon was named the beneficiary of all the properties owned by the five patients. The surgeon decided to give them the chemical X that kills them. The surgeon repents, but cannot save them, meaning that he will positively have murdered the five patients (Duncan, 2015).
According to Thomson, the surgeon cannot operate on the young man to save the five, he will have to let them die, but the fact remai...
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