Peter Singer Argument

495 Words2 Pages

The less fortunate are often overlooked because of their distance in the world. Contrary to this popular belief, philosopher Peter Singer believes that distance is both irrelevant and insignificant when helping others. Throughout this essay, I will argue in favor of Singer’s arguments. I believe Singer is accurate when he claims distance is irrelevant when human lives are at stake. Privileged people should always help the less fortunate as long as they are not sacrificing anything of comparable moral value. I will first summarize Singer’s interpretation of distance and moral responsibility and the examples he uses to further explain it. Then I will legitimize why distance is irrelevant in the given situation of famine and morality. Lastly, …show more content…

In addition, he explains that these fatal instances are not inevitable, and they can be stopped. Therefore, he believes we all must do everything in our power to prevent starvation and famine from occurring. Singer’s only condition is to help others without sacrificing anything of comparable value. For instance, do not give money to the needy if by doing that you will become poor yourself. In his explanation he uses a drowning baby as an example. If a man witnesses an innocent child drowning in a nearby pond, he should not be concerned about getting muddy or ruining his brand new pair of shoes, he should save the baby, because dirtying a pair of clean shoes or getting wet is not giving up something of comparable moral value ( Singer (1972), pg. 231). Additionally, Singer clarifies the distance between charity and duty. He explains charity is something that is beyond duty and it is not required for everyone to participate. And this explains why a charitable person is praised for their actions and an uncharitable man is not condemned. Singer believes that duty is required for every person (Singer (1927), pg. 235). Ultimately, Singer believes that the fortunate need to drastically revise their way of thinking. Giving to famine relief should be thought of as a duty rather than charity and should be morally required by everyone

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