Permissibility Of Torture

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ON TORTURE

This paper will systematically investigate different positions taken on the moral permissibility of torture, to reveal that torture is not to be accepted or justified under any circumstance.

In order to effectively address the matter, we ought to come to definitional terms with “torture”, despite the lack of unanimity and the spread of contextual usage of the term. For the scope of this paper, the term “torture” will be adopted to refer to any act by which mental or physical pain is inflicted on a person as punishment for an accused act, or coercion as a means to acquire confessions or information.
In defense of the argument for the absolute prohibition of torture the understanding of the phenomenology of torture is pivotal;
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The best exemplification of that argument adopted by people sharing this view is a hypothetical scenario known as the “ticking-bomb”; whereby an interrogator is informed that there is an imminent attack threatening a huge population of people and there is clear evidence that the person being interrogated is withholding vital information regarding the place of the bomb. What is more, the interrogator is proficient at torture techniques and through causing physical and psychological suffering can extract the required information that will save the lives of countless people. Hence the question to be asked is whether or not to move forward with torture. This leaves the people who believe that torture is wrong with a moral dilemma, for if they were to say “no” then they are placing their moral correctness ahead of the lives of those in danger. By following such narcissistic reasoning they have failed to be compliant with their moral values; however, there are others that believe that the moral thing to do is to sacrifice ourselves. So it seems that those who deny the moral permissibility of torture, in such cases, are conceding to the moral permissibility of killing.
The argument is based on the following premises:
1-Torture is necessary to protect the people.
2-It is in the people’s interest to take moral precedence over others’ interests.
3-Hence, it is morally permissible to go forward with torture.
It is clear that the argument is not sound, since the first premise is assuming that torture is a necessity and the second premise is no less morally problematic or

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