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Chapter04 Presentation Transcript

  • 1. Chapter Four The Nature of Rights in Ethical Discourse
  • 2. Rights Rights are justified claims: Our due We need not feel grateful to others We cannot be deprived of a right without it being a serious affront to justice
  • 3. Rights (continued) Review the Poor Piggy case: What basic right was taken from him? What gives a person a justified claim to life?
  • 4. Rights Formulation “If John has a right to X, then others have no justification in interfering with John’s pursuit or possession of X, so long as John’s exercise of his right to X does not infringe upon the rights of others”
  • 5. Thesis of Correlative Obligations If we consider rights as justified claims, then built into the claim is the twin thesis of rights and obligations Others are obliged to either provide the goods or services, or to refrain from interfering with our gaining or possessing the desired thing
  • 6. Correlative Obligations If we assume that informed consent is a patient’s right: What justifies this claim? If the patient has this right: What is the practitioner’s obligation?
  • 7. Correlative Obligations (continued) In the case of Poor Piggy: What was the right? What was the correlative obligation? Is this a negative or positive right?
  • 8. Human Rights Western civilization is rich in human rights language: These are considered universal rights inherent to all people in all lands
  • 9. Human Rights (continued) In many cases we judge the legitimacy of nation states by how well they protect these rights Name five human rights How are they justified?
  • 10. Consequentialist Rights Theory Jeremy Bentham (father of utilitarianism) believed that rights could not be justified on the basis of humanness or as endowments given by a benign creator
  • 11. Consequentialist Rights Theory (continued) Rights were those things that society, by collective agreement, decided to defend High utility is the justification
  • 12. Contractarian Rights Theory Thomas Hobbes (nonmoralized theory) Life in the state of nature was “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short” John Rawls (moralized theory) Original position Fair opportunity rule
  • 13. Justification of Rights Laws of nature Endowments from generous creator By collective agreement, as in consequentialist or contractarian reasoning To ensure enforcement, we back them by sanctions of law: legal rights
  • 14. Positive and Negative Rights Negative right: Requires non-interference from others “Life, liberty, pursuit of happiness” Abortion: government pay argument? Positive right: Recipient right Requires others to provide goods and services
  • 15. Fetal Endangerment Case Review case regarding fetal endangerment In this case, who has rights? How are they justified? Carolyn The fetus Hospital staff Whose rights should prevail?
  • 16. Common Claims to Rights Identify a justification that would create the following rights: Smoker’s rights Nonsmoker’s rights Animal rights Gay rights (marriage) Right to smoke hemp products Right to die on request
  • 17. Rights Proliferation In that human rights create attendant obligations for others, care should be taken in their creation Not all human wants should be converted to the status of human rights
  • 18. Rights Proliferation (continued) Human creativity allows us to imagine more rights than we can fulfill The dilution of human rights by adding new ones threatens established claims
  • 19. Key Concepts Rights are justified claims Rights can be justified in several different ways (moral, legal, social good) Positive rights are recipient rights Negative rights require others to refrain from interference
  • 20. Key Concepts (continued) Moralized and non-moralized social contract theories considered in rights development Rights create obligations for others to either provide resources or to refrain from interference
  • 21. Key Concepts (continued) Care must be taken so that the proliferation of rights claims for marginal gains do not threaten previously agreed-upon established claims