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  • The woman in fact pattern one

    10 22.73%
  • The store owner in fact pattern two

    9 20.45%
  • They both have the right to kill

    17 38.64%
  • Neither has the right to kill

    8 18.18%
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Thread: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

  1. #1
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    Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    Inspired by the responses by both conservatives and liberals in: Burglar's family awarded $300,000 in wrongful death suit

    FACT PATTERN ONE: A woman is raped and becomes pregnant. The fetus certainly has no evil intentions, but its unwanted presence in the woman's body is causing her moderate-to-serious emotional and psychological trauma. The fetus is two weeks old. She is seeking an abortion. The woman is known to be sexually promiscuous but has taken care to prevent pregnancy while engaging in consensual sex in the past. She has no family to take care of the child for her or help her but has sufficient money and means to raise it herself without sending herself into significant debt.

    FACT PATTERN TWO: A thief climbs over a fence and into the parking lot of a car dealership, intending to steal money or property to pay for his serious drug addiction. He has no intention of hurting anyone -- he believes the property to be empty of employees for the night. As such, he is armed with only a small pocket-knife which he carries on his person at all times. Unbeknownst to him, the store owner is sitting in his office and sees the guy come over the fence. Sensing that the guy is probably a thief, the owner pulls out his shot-gun, barrels out of the building. He wants to shoot the man for trespassing. He thinks the guy might have a gun but is mostly just furious the thief would dare attempt to steal from him. The thief has been on his property for all of forty seconds. The thief has no family to miss him or to ensure that he stays in compliance with the law. The store owner has a wife and kids and enough money to cover losses due to theft without sending his company or himself into significant debt.

    The poll question is: who has the stronger right to kill? Why? Also, which right should be valued more highly -- the right to control of one's property, or the right to control of one's body? How does culpability play into this question? And anything else you would like to add?
    (avatar by Thomas Nast)

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    Re: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    Quote Originally Posted by Krhazy View Post

    FACT PATTERN TWO: A thief climbs over a fence and into the parking lot of a car dealership, intending to steal money or property to pay for his serious drug addiction. He has no intention of hurting anyone -- he believes the property to be empty of employees for the night. As such, he is armed with only a small pocket-knife which he carries on his person at all times. Unbeknownst to him, the store owner is sitting in his office and sees the guy come over the fence. Sensing that the guy is probably a thief, the owner pulls out his shot-gun, barrels out of the building. He wants to shoot the man for trespassing. He thinks the guy might have a gun but is mostly just furious the thief would dare attempt to steal from him. The thief has been on his property for all of forty seconds. The thief has no family to miss him or to ensure that he stays in compliance with the law.
    You have no way of knowing what someone's intentions are.


    The store owner has a wife and kids and enough money to cover losses due to theft without sending his company or himself into significant debt.
    You have no way of knowing this and neither does the thief. And besides that it doesn't matter if you can or can not replace your property, you have the right to defend yourself and property against thieves.
    "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"

    Cicero Marcus Tullius

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    Re: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesrage View Post
    You have no way of knowing what someone's intentions are.




    You have no way of knowing this and neither does the thief.
    Don't fight the hypothetical.
    (avatar by Thomas Nast)

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    Re: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    Quote Originally Posted by Krhazy View Post
    Inspired by the responses by both conservatives and liberals in: Burglar's family awarded $300,000 in wrongful death suit

    FACT PATTERN ONE: A woman is raped and becomes pregnant. The fetus certainly has no evil intentions, but its unwanted presence in the woman's body is causing her moderate-to-serious emotional and psychological trauma. The fetus is two weeks old. She is seeking an abortion. The woman is known to be sexually promiscuous but has taken care to prevent pregnancy while engaging in consensual sex in the past. She has no family to take care of the child for her or help her but has sufficient money and means to raise it herself without sending herself into significant debt.

    FACT PATTERN TWO: A thief climbs over a fence and into the parking lot of a car dealership, intending to steal money or property to pay for his serious drug addiction. He has no intention of hurting anyone -- he believes the property to be empty of employees for the night. As such, he is armed with only a small pocket-knife which he carries on his person at all times. Unbeknownst to him, the store owner is sitting in his office and sees the guy come over the fence. Sensing that the guy is probably a thief, the owner pulls out his shot-gun, barrels out of the building. He wants to shoot the man for trespassing. He thinks the guy might have a gun but is mostly just furious the thief would dare attempt to steal from him. The thief has been on his property for all of forty seconds. The thief has no family to miss him or to ensure that he stays in compliance with the law. The store owner has a wife and kids and enough money to cover losses due to theft without sending his company or himself into significant debt.

    The poll question is: who has the stronger right to kill? Why? Also, which right should be valued more highly -- the right to control of one's property, or the right to control of one's body? How does culpability play into this question? And anything else you would like to add?
    In the second case, we spend a lot of money on 911 response teams precisely because we want to have a very exacting justice system; saying that the car dealer has a right to kill the thief makes it sound as though the justice system and its punishments are just a net to address anomalous situations where a would-be criminal's fate isn't decided by his would-be victim, which isn't the case (while poetically just, the victim often lacks the critical impartiality to reach a just verdict). Even in antiquity, the most widely accepted punishment for theft was cutting off a person's hand, not ending their life. I don't see why our morals should be less than those of antiquity.

    You have no way of knowing this and neither does the thief. And besides that it doesn't matter if you can or can not replace your property, you have the right to defend yourself and property against thieves.
    Maybe not. But I do know that the police are trained professionals better equipped to the handle the situation than me. In the world of cell phones and professional business communications, it is hardly believable that the car dealer's best option is to take action himself. The law reflects that.

    FACT PATTERN ONE: A woman is raped and becomes pregnant. The fetus certainly has no evil intentions, but its unwanted presence in the woman's body is causing her moderate-to-serious emotional and psychological trauma. The fetus is two weeks old. She is seeking an abortion. The woman is known to be sexually promiscuous but has taken care to prevent pregnancy while engaging in consensual sex in the past. She has no family to take care of the child for her or help her but has sufficient money and means to raise it herself without sending herself into significant debt.
    This example is so heavily enveloped by spiritual crisis that it is subject to the "Tao" -- the woman has to find her own way. Whatever option she chooses will be extremely difficult to reconcile herself to, so what she does is secondary to whether she can live with it.

    According to this logic, the woman has more right of the two.
    Last edited by Morality Games; 08-31-11 at 04:05 PM.
    If you notice something good in yourself, give credit to God, not to yourself, but be certain the evil you commit is always your own and yours to acknowledge.

    St. Benedict

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    Re: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    Quote Originally Posted by Krhazy View Post
    Inspired by the responses by both conservatives and liberals in: Burglar's family awarded $300,000 in wrongful death suit

    FACT PATTERN ONE: A woman is raped and becomes pregnant. The fetus certainly has no evil intentions, but its unwanted presence in the woman's body is causing her moderate-to-serious emotional and psychological trauma. The fetus is two weeks old. She is seeking an abortion. The woman is known to be sexually promiscuous but has taken care to prevent pregnancy while engaging in consensual sex in the past. She has no family to take care of the child for her or help her but has sufficient money and means to raise it herself without sending herself into significant debt.

    FACT PATTERN TWO: A thief climbs over a fence and into the parking lot of a car dealership, intending to steal money or property to pay for his serious drug addiction. He has no intention of hurting anyone -- he believes the property to be empty of employees for the night. As such, he is armed with only a small pocket-knife which he carries on his person at all times. Unbeknownst to him, the store owner is sitting in his office and sees the guy come over the fence. Sensing that the guy is probably a thief, the owner pulls out his shot-gun, barrels out of the building. He wants to shoot the man for trespassing. He thinks the guy might have a gun but is mostly just furious the thief would dare attempt to steal from him. The thief has been on his property for all of forty seconds. The thief has no family to miss him or to ensure that he stays in compliance with the law. The store owner has a wife and kids and enough money to cover losses due to theft without sending his company or himself into significant debt.

    The poll question is: who has the stronger right to kill? Why? Also, which right should be valued more highly -- the right to control of one's property, or the right to control of one's body? How does culpability play into this question? And anything else you would like to add?
    Very interesting thread, though I don't think I'll answer...

    I will say this however, which is an argument I've made for many years that most folks just don't get...

    Both are all about property rights. That's right, both.

    While our rights are protected by constitutional law, it is property law that is most often exercised. When the country was founded, the only people with a right to vote were property owners. To expand the right to vote while not rewriting property law, the definition of property was revised to include yourself, your person. Simply put, you have the right to protect yourself against any intrusion or threat upon your property by law. This applies to both situations.

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    Re: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    I'm confused, if a woman is raped, can she choose just any innocent bystander to kill or does it have to be a baby? Does the baby have to be related to her, or can she just pick one?

    I think if someone breaks into a store, the store owner has the right to kill him because if a criminal is so depraved that he will break in to the store, he might also be a rapist. Then the store owner might have to kill an innocent baby.
    The US is an odd ship. The captain yells out when he sees obtacles , but 535 individual propellers do the steering.

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    Re: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    A very interesting thread, to be sure. I'll wait and watch the responses. Tbh, I'm not even sure what option I'd choose.

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    Re: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    [QUOTE=Simply put, you have the right to protect yourself against any intrusion or threat upon your property by law. This applies to both situations.[/QUOTE]

    I agree that both have the right to protect themselves against any intrusion or threat upon their property (or body). But would you say that if an intruder broke into your property (and was killed justly, or arrested, or escaped), and then you found out they left their 1 year old child hiding in the closet you had the right to kill the child? I doubt it. It's not an adequate comparison.

    There may be discussions worth having as to when life starts. But, property issues isn't a reasonable part of the discussion.
    The US is an odd ship. The captain yells out when he sees obtacles , but 535 individual propellers do the steering.

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    Re: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    Quote Originally Posted by GreenvilleGrows View Post
    I agree that both have the right to protect themselves against any intrusion or threat upon their property (or body). But would you say that if an intruder broke into your property (and was killed justly, or arrested, or escaped), and then you found out they left their 1 year old child hiding in the closet you had the right to kill the child? I doubt it. It's not an adequate comparison.

    There may be discussions worth having as to when life starts. But, property issues isn't a reasonable part of the discussion.
    Well, in your hypothetical, no it isn't.

    However, you are actually quite wrong..

    But if that intruder left a viable fetus within the woman hiding in the closet, it's a different story.

    The argument for the Pro Abortion Rights crowd has been and is, and has prevailed on the basis of property rights and property law.

    A quick search of google confirms this...

    Abortion as Eviction: Property Rights, the Child and the Womb Part ...
    zealfortruth.org/.../abortion-as-eviction-property-rights-the-child-an... - CachedDec 5, 2007 Dr. Block's views on abortion follow this basic framework holding private property rights as the ultimate judge between two individuals. ...
    The Pro-Rights Abortion Position | The Next Right

    thenextright.com/john-brill/the-pro-rights-abortion-position - CachedNov 24, 2008 A woman aborting against the will of the man is as much a violation of his genetic property rights as a man perpetrating trauma to a woman's ...

    Self-ownership, Abortion, and a Brave New World - Knowledge ...
    knowledge.wpcarey.asu.edu/article.cfm?articleid=1823 - CachedOct 22, 2009 Tackling the abortion debate as a matter of property rights is crucial, Boyes said. Do we own our own bodies? And if we do, is a fetus also a ...

    PropertyProf Blog: Rausch on Abortion and Property Rights
    lawprofessors.typepad.com/property/.../rausch-on-abortion-and-pro... - CachedAug 22, 2011 Rausch on Abortion and Property Rights. Rebecca Rausch (Seattle - Teaching Fellow) has posted Reframing Roe: Property Over Privacy ...

    Libertarians for Life - The "Right" of Abortion: A Dogma in Search of ...
    Libertarians for Life - The "Right" of Abortion: A Dogma in Search of a Rationale - CachedRothbard and Block simply evade the issue, therefore, when they defend abortion on the ground of "woman's property rights". If, as they concede, the unborn ...

    Abortion, Property Rights, and the Welfare State
    JSTOR: An Error Occurred Setting Your User Cookie A Bardon - 1998 - Related articles

    ABORTION, PROPERTY RIGHTS, AND THE. WELFARE STATE. Adrian Bardon. Jarvis Thomson's seminal and widely reproduced paper on the morality of ...

    While you may take exception to this, apparently the supreme court finds that it's not quite as dubious as you find it.

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    Re: Hypothetical: Who has the Stronger Right to Kill?

    fact pattern one: the fetus is completely innocent
    fact pattern two: the guy is a thief

    If you had to choose one, which deserves to die more?
    The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.

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