1 The philosophy of human rights II: justifying HR HUMR 5131 Fall 2017 Jakob Elster
2 What do we justify? 1. The existence of moral human rights? a. The existence of MHR understood as «natual rights», i.e. as rights we have just in virtue of being human? b. The existence of MHR understood in light of contemporary HR practice and discourse? 2. The existence of legal human rights?
3 The difficulty of justification in ethics [Picture removed] (For this and the next slide, see Dagfinn Føllesdal, The emergence of justification in ethics,european Review, vol. 13. no. 2. (2005))
4 The problem with circular [Picture removed] justifications?
5 Criteria for a valid justification of moral human rights Must give normative force to HR, and provide duty-bearers with reason for action Must provide the right kind of argument for HR Must allow us to say which HR there are Must have critical force in relation to generally acknowledged human rights Must show fidelity to the concept of HR one is working with The list of rights must be suitable for public, practical use Must show why interference with sovereignty is acceptable (?)
6 Exercise Choose a specific human right, and discuss how you can justify it
7 Foundational vs derivative justifications of rights Nickel p Derivative justifications: - specifying a recognized right - showing why a HR is necessary for/ supports the realization of a recognized right - cantilever arguments : no relevant moral difference between the case for a recognized HR to A and a new HR to B (Miller, Carens)
8 Prudential justifications «In terms of my (your) own interests, I am (you are) likely to be better off, and hence I (you) have good reason to accept and support human rights» (Nickel p. 55) Is it a moral justification? What about powerful groups? (Nickel) Can be motivationally useful Can be part of a moral justification
9 Utilitarian/consequentalist Consequentialism = justification 1. A theory of value, allowing us to rank outcomes + 2. A theory of right action, telling us to produce the best outcome of those available to us
10 Utilitarian/consequentalist justification Step 1: Utilitarianism: «we should judge norms and institutions entirely on the basis of their likely consequences for the general welfare». (Nickel p. 59) Step 2: «Satisfaction of fundamental interests is a large part of people s welfare, so if human rights contribute greatly to the satisfaction of most people s fundamental interests, the utilitarian will take this to be a strong argument in support of human rights.» (p. 59)
11 Questions for consequentialist justifications The argument is contingent on empirical circumstances The argument «gets the right answer for the wrong reasons» Justifying moral human rights or justifying institutions/laws and/or the inculcation of prevalent beliefs about moral human rights?
12 The wrong reason? Feinberg: Having rights enable us to stand up like men, to look others in the eye, and to feel in some fundamental way the equal of anyone. To think of oneself as the holder of rights is not to be unduly but properly proud, to have that minimal self-respect that is necessary to be worthy of the love and esteem of others. ( The Nature and Value of rights )
13 The wrong reason? Nagel: [Rights] embody a form of recognition of the value of each individual that supplements and differs in kind from that which leads us to value the overall increase of human happiness and the eradication of misery and this form of recognition of human value is no less important than the other. Personal rights and public space
14 The wrong reason? Nagel: In the world with no rights and fewer killings, no one would be inviolable in a way in which, in the world with more rights and more killings, everyone would be including the victims.» Personal rights and public space
15 A schema for justifying HR 1. A feature of humanity which we value (human dignity) 2. A set of basic needs/interests/freedoms 3. A set of basic, general rights 4. Specfication of the basic rights: a set of proto -HR 5. Various filters applied to the set of proto -HR 6. The final list of human rights
16 Nickel on the basis for HR A secure claim to have a life A secure claim to lead one s life A secure claim against severely cruel or degrading treatment A secure claim against severely unfair treatment A unifying idea for these four secure claims is that, perfectly realized, they would make it possible for every person living today to have and lead a life that is decent and minimally good (p. 62)
17 Griffin on the basis for HR 1. Personhood/ normative agency: Homo sapiens can form and pursue conceptions of a worthwhile life. (p 32) 2. HR are protections of our human standing or [ ] personhood 3. Protecting personhood requires: a. Autonomy b. A minimum provision of resources and capabilities c. liberty
18 Filter: Nickel s list of tests (ch 5) 1. Substantial and recurrent threats ( regularly present and dangerous p. 74) 2. Importance of what is protected 3. Can it be a universal right? 4. Would some weaker norm be as effective? 5. The burdens are justifiable 6. Feasibility in a majority of countries
19 Other filters? Is the need/interest such that it can meaningfully be made the object of a right? Ex tranquility of mind (Sen), romantic love (Tasioulas) A proper subject of international concern?
20 Buchanan on the justification of international legal human rights
21 «The Mirroring View» Buchanan: «The Mirroring View holds that to justify an international legal human right typically involves defending the claim that a corresponding moral human right exists. The qualifier typically is designed to accommodate the fact that some who hold this view acknowledge that in some cases a justified international legal right does not mirror a moral human right, but rather is either (a) a specification of a moral human right (as the right to freedom of the press is a specification of the right to freedom of expression), or (b) something that is instrumentally valuable for realizing a moral human right (as some think that an international legal right to democratic government is instrumentally valuable for realizing some important moral human rights, even if there is no moral human right to democratic government).»
22 According to the mirroring view, justifying a ILHR can take three forms: 1. Arguing that the corresponding MHR exists 2. Arguing that the ILHR is a specification of an existing MHR 3. Arguing that the ILHR is instrumentally necessary for realizing an existing MHR.
23 Two aspects of the Mirroring View 1. A MHR is necessary in order to ground a ILHR 2. Any MHR is sufficient in order to ground a ILHR.
24 The mirroring view and the founders Cf. UDHR, preamble: Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world, Cf. the preambles to ICCPR and ICESCR "Considering that, in accordance with the principles proclaimed in the Charter of the United Nations, recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world, Recognizing that these rights derive from the inherent dignity of the human person,...
25 Possible implications of the Mirroring View 1. New ILHR should be introduced 2.Some existing ILHR should be removed or «downgraded» 3.If a proposed new ILHR is not grounded in a MHR, it should not be adopted In short: the mirroring view provides us with a critical «test» for accepting or rejecting ILHR
26 A canonical example: periodic holidays with pay - Universal Declaration of Human Rights, article 24: Everyone has the right to rest and leisure, including reasonable limitation of working hours and periodic holidays with pay. - Cf. International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, article 7.
27 Buchanan s first line of criticism MHR are insufficient for grounding ILHR 1. Not all MHR are fit for legalization, ex. the right to be treated with respect 2. MHR do not have sufficient weight for justifying extensive duties 3. MHR do not allow for the social coordination necessary to justify extensive duties
28 MHR do not have sufficient weight for justifying extensive duties Many ILHR are quite costly to realize, e.g. the right to health, the right to due process, i.e. they involve costly duties A MHR only exists if the corresponding duties can be justified The duties corresponding to MHR must be «solely subjectgrounded»: something about the individual subject having that right must be sufficiently important to justify the cost «To put the point bluntly: No matter who you are, you are not important enough to justify a set of duties that correlate with the panoply of legal rights that constitute the modern rights-respecting welfare state, much less important enough to justify a system of international human rights law that serves to support the welfare state s system of rights.» (Buchanan, HoHR)
29 Buchanan s third criticism «To justify a moral right, one must show that the corresponding duties exist, that is, that someone has the duties in question or, on some theories of rights, one must at least show that it would be justifiable to impose the duties on someone. But whether an individual, A, has a moral duty, D, to do X, and whether it is justifiable to require A to do X (to impose the duty on him) can depend on whether A has reasonable assurance that others are going to fulfill that duty Without this assurance, it may be unfair to require A to do X. If D is merely a moral duty, then A may not have this assurance, in which case he will not have the duty and it will not be justifiable to impose the duty on him; consequently, there will be no duty and hence no right» (Buchanan, HoHR)
30 Buchanan s second line of criticism - MHR are not necessary for grounding ILHR - Buchanan s instrumental approach: The fundamental and quite general point is that legal rights, whether domestic or international, do not presuppose corresponding moral rights. This should be no surprise, given that individual legal human rights are instruments that can serve a number of purposes, including moral ones of various types. The moral purposes for which individual legal rights are instrumentally valuable are nor restricted to the realization of antecedently existing individual moral rights (Buchanan, HoHR)
31 An example of the instrumental approach The legal right to health can be justified because it: - can promote social utility - contribute to social solidarity - help to realize the ideal of a decent or humane society - increase productivity and to that extent contribute to the general welfare - and provide an efficient and coordinated way for individuals to fulfill their obligations of beneficence (Buchanan, HoHR)
32 Briefly on Buchanan s second line of criticism: the moral force of ILHRs is lost David Luban, Human Rights Pragmatism and Human Dignity. Luban: Why should state leaders (pretend to) feel ashamed about violating [ILHR], any more than they feel ashamed about violating technical regulations about the size and shape of cartons in international shipping?
Judging Subsistence Rights by their Duties Eric Boot Introduction Though Kant is often considered one of the fonts of inspiration for the human rights movement, the book in which he speaks most of rights
1 INTRODUCTORY HANDOUT PHILOSOPHY 13 FALL, 2004 INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHY---ETHICS Professor: Richard Arneson. TAs: Eric Campbell and Adam Streed. Lecture MWF 11:00-11:50 a.m. in Cognitive Science Bldg.
Making Decisions on Behalf of Others: Who or What Do I Select as a Guide? - My boss - The shareholders - Other stakeholders - Basic principles about conduct and its impacts - What is good for me - What
University of St Andrews DEPARTMENT OF PHILOSOPHY PY 4652, The Philosophy of Human Rights (2016) Credits: 30 Semester: 2 Description: The course explores cutting-edge research on the nature, content, and
This article was downloaded by: [University of Chicago Library] On: 24 May 2013, At: 08:10 Publisher: Routledge Informa Ltd Registered in England and Wales Registered Number: 1072954 Registered office:
The Conflict Between Authority and Autonomy from Robert Wolff, In Defense of Anarchism (1970) 1. The Concept of Authority Politics is the exercise of the power of the state, or the attempt to influence
Benjamin Visscher Hole IV Phil 100, Intro to Philosophy Kantian Ethics I. Context II. The Good Will III. The Categorical Imperative: Formulation of Universal Law IV. The Categorical Imperative: Formulation
ETHICS - A - Z Absolutism Act-utilitarianism Agent-centred consideration Agent-neutral considerations : This is the view, with regard to a moral principle or claim, that it holds everywhere and is never
QUIZ 1 ETHICAL ISSUES IN MEDIA, BUSINESS AND SOCIETY WHAT IS ETHICS? Business ethics deals with values, facts, and arguments. Q2) The test of an ethical argument lies in the fact that others need to be
UTILITARIAN ETHICS Evaluating actions The principle of utility Strengths Criticisms Act vs. rule A dilemma You are a lawyer. You have a client who is an old lady who owns a big house. She tells you that
FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES OF THE METAPHYSIC OF MORALS SECOND SECTION by Immanuel Kant TRANSITION FROM POPULAR MORAL PHILOSOPHY TO THE METAPHYSIC OF MORALS... This principle, that humanity and generally every
Compromise and Toleration: Some Reflections Christian F. Rostbøll Paper for Årsmøde i Dansk Selskab for Statskundskab, 29-30 Oct. 2015. Kolding. (The following is not a finished paper but some preliminary
What Lurks Beneath the Integrity Objection Bernard Williams s alienation and integrity arguments against consequentialism have served as the point of departure for much of the most interesting work that
Equality of Capacity AMARTYA SEN WHY EQUALITY? WHAT EQUALITY? Two central issues for ethical analysis of equality are: (1) Why equality? (2) Equality of what? The two questions are distinct but thoroughly
Rawls s veil of ignorance excludes all knowledge of likelihoods regarding the social position one ends up occupying, while John Harsanyi s version of the veil tells contractors that they are equally likely
Reply to Gauthier and Gibbard The Harvard community has made this article openly available. Please share how this access benefits you. Your story matters Citation Scanlon, Thomas M. 2003. Reply to Gauthier
IN DEFENSE OF AN ANIMAL S RIGHT TO LIFE Aaron Simmons A Dissertation Submitted to the Graduate College of Bowling Green State University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of DOCTOR
The Civil Society and the Education on Human Rights as a Tool for Promoting Religious Tolerance UNGA Ministerial Segment Side Event, 27 September 2012 Crisis areas, current and future challenges to the
Humanities 4: Lectures 17-19 Kant s Ethics 1 Method & Questions Purpose and Method: Transition from Common Sense to Philosophical Understanding of Morality Analysis of everyday moral concepts Main Questions:
Duty and Categorical Rules Immanuel Kant Introduction to Ethics, PHIL 118 Professor Douglas Olena Preview This selection from Kant includes: The description of the Good Will The concept of Duty An introduction
Cabrillo College Claudia Close Honors Ethics Philosophy 10H Fall 2018 Honors Ethics Oral Presentations: Instructions Your initial presentation should be approximately 6-7 minutes and you should prepare
The Formula of Humanity as an End in Itself The humanity formulation of the Categorical Imperative demands that every person must Act in such a way that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or
Professor Douglas W. Portmore CONSEQUENTIALISM AND THE SELF OTHER ASYMMETRY I. Consequentialism, Commonsense Morality, and the Self Other Asymmetry Unlike traditional act consequentialism (TAC), commonsense
introductory lectures in bioethics Foundations of Bioethics Paul Menzel Pacific Lutheran University (philosophy, emeritus) Visiting Professor of Bioethics, CUHK 17 October 2015 Centre for Bioethics, CUHK
ADVANCED SUBSIDIARY (AS) General Certificate of Education 2015 Religious Studies Assessment Unit AS 6 assessing Religious Ethics: Foundations, Principles and Practice [AR161] WEDNESDAY 17 JUNE, AFTERNOON
24.231 Ethics Handout 19 Bernard Williams, The Idea of Equality A descriptive claim: All men are equal. A normative conclusion: Therefore we should treat men as equals. I. What should we make of the descriptive
Chapter 2 Reasoning about Ethics TRUE/FALSE 1. The statement "nearly all Americans believe that individual liberty should be respected" is a normative claim. F This is a statement about people's beliefs;
Snopek: The Social Nature in John Stuart Mill s Utilitarianism The Social Nature in John Stuart Mill s Utilitarianism Helena Snopek Vancouver Island University Faculty Sponsor: Dr. David Livingstone In
in Social Science Encyclopedia (Routledge, forthcoming, 2006). Consequentialism Ethics in Practice, 3 rd edition, edited by Hugh LaFollette (Blackwell Publishers, forthcoming, 2006) Peter Vallentyne, University
Against Maximizing Act - Consequentialism Forthcoming in Moral Theories (edited by Jamie Dreier, Blackwell Publishers, 2004) 1. Introduction Maximizing act consequentialism holds that actions are morally
Glasgow s Conception of Kantian Humanity Richard Dean ABSTRACT: In Kant s Conception of Humanity, Joshua Glasgow defends a traditional reading of the humanity formulation of the Categorical Imperative.
Human Rights, Human Agency and Respect: Extending Griffin s View Rowan Cruft I. The language of rights is used broadly: to encompass such important matters as human rights, criminal law rights, the rights
Critical Reasoning and Moral theory day 3 CS 340 Fall 2015 Ethics and Moral Theories Differences of opinion based caused by different value set Deontology Virtue Religious and Divine Command Utilitarian
Mill s Utilitarianism I. Introduction Recall that there are four questions one might ask an ethical theory to answer: a) Which acts are right and which are wrong? Which acts ought we to perform (understanding
72 THE OBLIGATIONS CONSECRATION OF By JEAN GALOT C o N S ~ C P. A T I O N implies obligations. The draft-law on Institutes of Perfection speaks of 'a life consecrated by means of the evangelical counsels',
SUMMARIES AND TEST QUESTIONS UNIT 6 Textbook: Louis P. Pojman, Editor. Philosophy: The quest for truth. New York: Oxford University Press, 2006. ISBN-10: 0199697310; ISBN-13: 9780199697311 (6th Edition)
It is our duty to ensure that these rights are a living reality -- that they are known, understood and enjoyed by everyone, everywhere. It is often those who most need their human rights protected, who
Rawls, rationality, and responsibility: Why we should not treat our endowments as morally arbitrary OLIVER DUROSE Abstract John Rawls is primarily known for providing his own argument for how political
The Future of Practical Philosophy: a Reply to Taylor Samuel Zinaich, Jr. ABSTRACT: This response to Taylor s paper, The Future of Applied Philosophy (also included in this issue) describes Taylor s understanding
James Rachels Ethical Egoism Psychological Egoism Ethical Egoism n Psychological Egoism: n Ethical Egoism: An empirical (descriptive) theory A normative (prescriptive) theory A theory about what in fact
1. Introduction Human Rights, Human Dignity, and Power Pablo Gilabert This paper explores the connections between human rights, human dignity, and power. The idea of human dignity is omnipresent in human
ADVANCED SUBSIDIARY (AS) General Certificate of Education January 2012 Religious Studies Assessment Unit AS 6 assessing Religious Ethics: Foundations, Principles and Practice [AR161] WEDNESDAY 25 JANUARY,
Practical Rationality and Ethics Basic Terms and Positions Practical reasons and moral ought Reasons are given in answer to the sorts of questions ethics seeks to answer: What should I do? How should I
Peter Singer, Practical Ethics Discussion Questions/Study Guide Prepared by Prof. Bill Felice Ch. 1: "About Ethics," p. 1-15 1) Clarify and discuss the different ethical theories: Deontological approaches-ethics
Free Exercise of Religion 1. What distinguishes Mill s argument from Bentham s? Mill and Bentham both endorse the harm principle. Utilitarians, they both rest their moral liberalism on an appeal to consequences.
Draft of 3-6- 13 PHIL 202: Core Ethics; Winter 2013 Core Sequence in the History of Ethics, 2011-2013 IV: 19 th and 20 th Century Moral Philosophy David O. Brink Handout #9: W.D. Ross Like other members
1 BLACKBOARD NOTES ON NOZICK VERSUS SEN PHILOSOPHY 13 FALL, 2007 ROBERT NOZICK ON RIGHTS AS SIDE CONSTRAINTS. Moral rights should be conceived as side constraints on actions not as goals to be promoted.
Draft of 3-21- 13 PHIL 202: Core Ethics; Winter 2013 Core Sequence in the History of Ethics, 2011-2013 IV: 19 th and 20 th Century Moral Philosophy David O. Brink Handout #14: Williams, Internalism, and
Consequentialism and Famine I. Moral Theory: Introduction Here are five questions we might want an ethical theory to answer for us: i) Which acts are right and which are wrong? Which acts ought we to perform
3 Kant s Juridical Idea of Human Rights 1 Ariel Zylberman What is it for you to have a human right? And what justifies your claim to bear such a right? It is common to suppose that human rights possess
Ethics and Morality Ethos (Greek) and Mores (Latin) are terms having to do with custom, habit, and behavior. Ethics is the study of morality. This definition raises two questions: (a) What is morality?
3 On the Relevance of Ignorance to the Demands of Morality 1 Geoffrey Sayre-McCord It is impossible to overestimate the amount of stupidity in the world. Bernard Gert 2 Introduction In Morality, Bernard
Response: The Irony of It All Nicholas Wolterstorff In this response, I will bring to light a fascinating, and in some ways hopeful, irony embedded in the preceding essays on human rights, when they are
FORMING ETHICAL STANDARDS Ethical standards of any type require a devotion to ethical action, and ethical action often comes in conflict with our instinct to act in our own self-interest. This tendency
Deontology: Duty-Based Ethics IMMANUEL KANT KANT S OBJECTIONS TO UTILITARIANISM: 1. Utilitarianism takes no account of integrity - the accidental act or one done with evil intent if promoting good ends
PHI 1700: Global Ethics Session 13 March 22 nd, 2016 O Neill, A Simplified Account of Kant s Ethics So far in this unit, we ve seen many different ways of judging right/wrong actions: Aristotle s virtue
Contractualism and Justification 1 T. M. Scanlon I first began thinking of contractualism as a moral theory 38 years ago, in May of 1979. The idea was not entirely original. I was of course familiar with
Notes on Moore and Parker, Chapter 12: Moral, Legal and Aesthetic Reasoning The final chapter of Moore and Parker s text is devoted to how we might apply critical reasoning in certain philosophical contexts.
GAUTENG DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION Policy on Religion at Parkview Junior School 30 August 2013 1 Table of Contents 1. Title of the policy... 3 2. Effective Date... 3 3. Revision History... 3 4. Preamble...
Charles Dr. Clea F. Rees ReesC17@cardiff.ac.uk Centre for Lifelong Learning Cardiff University Autumn 2011 Outline Advertisement: Free Christmas Lecture! Overview and Introduction Argument Structure Two
PHI 1700: Global Ethics Prof. Lauren R. Alpert Name: Date: Take Home Exam #2 Instructions (Read Before Proceeding!) Material for this exam is from class sessions 8-15. Matching and fill-in-the-blank questions
Macalester Journal of Philosophy Volume 20 Issue 1 Article 1 6-21-2012 Real Respect: A Rejection of Richard Miller s Patriotic Bias in Tax-Financed Aid Gerbrand Hoogvliet Macalester College Follow this
Citation: 21 Isr. L. Rev. 113 1986 Content downloaded/printed from HeinOnline (http://heinonline.org) Sun Jan 11 12:34:09 2015 -- Your use of this HeinOnline PDF indicates your acceptance of HeinOnline's
Moral Philosophy : Utilitarianism Utilitarianism Utilitarianism is a moral theory that was developed by Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832) and John Stuart Mill (1806-1873). It is a teleological or consequentialist
APPENDIX A NOTE ON JOHN PAUL II, VERITATIS SPLENDOR (1993) The Encyclical is primarily a theological document, addressed to the Pope's fellow Roman Catholics rather than to men and women of good will generally.
CRUCIAL TOPICS IN THE DEBATE ABOUT THE EXISTENCE OF EXTERNAL REASONS By MARANATHA JOY HAYES A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS
W.D. Ross (1877-1971) British philosopher Translator or Aristotle Defends a pluralist theory of morality in his now-classic book The Right and the Good (1930) Big idea: prima facie duties Prima Facie Duties
Dignity, Contractualism and Consequentialism DAVID CUMMISKEY Bates College Kantian respect for persons is based on the special status and dignity of humanity. There are, however, at least three distinct
Philosophia (2017) 45:987 993 DOI 10.1007/s11406-017-9833-0 Epistemic Consequentialism, Truth Fairies and Worse Fairies James Andow 1 Received: 7 October 2015 / Accepted: 27 March 2017 / Published online:
Philosophical Ethics The nature of ethical analysis Discussion based on Johnson, Computer Ethics, Chapter 2. How to resolve ethical issues? censorship abortion affirmative action How do we defend our moral
How should I live? I should do whatever brings about the most pleasure (or, at least, the most good) Suppose that some actions are right, and some are wrong. What s the difference between them? What makes
PHI 110 Lecture 29 1 Hello again. Today we re gonna continue our discussions of Kant s ethics. Last time we talked about the good will and Kant defined the good will as the free rational will which acts
Catholic Religious Education in the Home Policy No. 2006-04 Policy Statement In response to the number of Catholic families choosing to provide all or part of their children s education at home, Catholic
Compendium of key international human rights agreements concerning Freedom of Religion or Belief Contents Introduction... 2 United Nations agreements/documents... 2 The Universal Declaration of Human Rights,
University of Birmingham Birmingham Law School Jurisprudence 2007-08 Assessed Essay (Second Round) Does law have to be effective in order for it to be valid? It is important to consider the terms valid
If Natural Entities Have Intrinsic Value, Should We Then Abstain from Helping Animals Who Are Victims of Natural Processes? 1 Luciano Carlos Cunha PhD Candidate, Federal University of Santa Catarina doi:
No Love for Singer: The Inability of Preference Utilitarianism to Justify Partial Relationships In his book Practical Ethics, Peter Singer advocates preference utilitarianism, which holds that the right
ALARA: A Complex Approach Based on Multi-disciplinary Perspectives Presented by Ludo Veuchelen SCK CEN Based on a working paper coauthored by Suman Rao Outline Introduction ALARA: a complex concept Philosophy
Well-Being, Time, and Dementia Jennifer Hawkins University of Toronto Philosophers often discuss what makes a life as a whole good. More significantly, it is sometimes assumed that beneficence, which is