Killing Minimally Responsible Threats

Ethics 125 (1):114-136 (2014)
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Abstract

Minimal responsibility threateners are epistemically justified but mistaken in thinking that imposing a nonnegligible risk on others is permissible. On standard accounts, an MRT forfeits her right not to be defensively killed. I propose an alternative account: an MRT is liable only to the degree of harm equivalent to what she risks causing multiplied by her degree of responsibility. Harm imposed on the MRT above that amount is justified as a lesser evil, relative to allowing the MRT to kill her victim. This hybrid account, which generalizes to those are who are more than minimally responsible, has considerable advantages

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Saba Bazargan-Forward
University of California, San Diego

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