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“Shades of gray” (repost)

April 6, 2011

A recent posting by PZ Myers on Pharyngula that I found very thought provoking and moving. While I am not quite as extreme a pacifist as he, I do believe that killing should be avoided as much as possible. It may be that killing is never morally acceptable, but it may also be sometimes morally required. I don’t know many who would argue that the Nazis shouldn’t have been fought against in the second World War. Sometimes it may be the case that killing a few is required to save the many innocent who would otherwise be murdered.

I’m an extremist in this debate, I will freely confess. I hold an absolute view that no killing is ever justified, that individuals have the necessity to defend themselves against assailants, but that even that does not grant moral approval to snuffing out the life of another. — PZ Myers

A world without killing would be wonderful, but I don’t think it is likely to ever become a reality and there may always be special cases where it is required to protect the innocent. It should be avoided at all costs, and considered very carefully, and any advancement to make warfare less deadly should be explored and exploited.

In the context of PZ’s post, however, the killings committed over the destruction of a religious artifact, killing is never morally acceptable.

Go, read his post.

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