Kant gives four examples to explain his First Formulation of Categorical Imperative:
Making a lying promise
Neglecting one’s talent
Refraining from helping others
“ Act only according to that maxim by which you can at the same time will that it will become a universal law.”
The action is right if the maxim (general rule) can be universalized.
E.g. if everyone had an abortion universally: they are breaking their duty to reproduce but human race would also die out.
Every rational being exists “ as an end in himself and not merely as a means to be arbitrarily used by this or that will.”
Do not use people as a means to your own end
A kingdom of means.
To preserve moral integrity of each individual, every individual should behave as though every other individual was an ‘end.’
Are we rational?
No common moral code within humanity: right and wrong depends on culture/ society brought up in
Can we switch off emotions? Emotions make us human, separate us from animals. Emotions needed in moral dilemmas
Is there any such thing as an action that does not have an ulterior motive?
Cold and inhuman basis for morality: morals based on love and compassion not classed as moral e.g. a person giving to charity out if compassion is not doing a virtuous thing because not out of sense of duty.
Can duties by wrong and evil e.g. Hitler
Categorical imperative: To rigid
Meant to be deontological but isn't the question “what happens in everyone did this universally” looking at end results?