Australian philosopher Peter Singer says that where world poverty is concerned 'giving to charity' is neither charitable nor generous; it is no more than our duty and not giving would be wrong. Peter Singer, Humility Kills, Jewcy, May Singer says we have a duty to reduce poverty and death simply because we can. It is not simply the absence of charity, let alone of moral saintliness: It is wrong, and one cannot claim to be a morally decent person unless one is doing far more than the typical comfortably-off person does.
The philosophical arguments would largely have to do with rejecting Singer's views on morality. Singer effectively makes a proactive, utilitarian argument: Alternate moral theories could argue that it's morally laudable to render aid, but not morally necessary, or that each person is entitled to their property, and it's not even morally laudable to surrender them to the needy, or that it's not moral to relieve the burden on those truly obligated to help like the people and the governmentor that moral virtue lies in the attempt, and as long as you're trying, you're moral.
The argument I find far more compelling is the pragmatic argument. It's a radical oversimplification to argue that I can just give money and that will save lives. Lack of money is one problem in poor parts of the world, but only one. In a disturbingly large percent of cases, donated money is basically lost, either to overhead, mismanagement, waste, or outright theft and corruption.
The food and goods needed in starving areas are often difficult or impossible to get there, and in many cases are blocked by civil unrest, dysfunctional governments, and lack of infrastructure. Even when money and food are donated, and make it to the people involved, making such donations on an ongoing basis as opposed to short term emergency relief tends to skew local economies and cultures to be dependent on them, which has huge social and political impacts.
There are now Somali and Haitian activists who argue that decades of Western intervention has not only failed to solve their countries' problems, but has done more harm than good. However, if I think my money is going to be thrown in a pile with a lot of other peoples' donations, be eaten away by charity marketing budgets and salaries, and may or may not do some good somewhere down the road?
I'm not convinced that's a moral obligation. I'm all in favor of charities, and I'm genuinely impressed by people who give their lives to helping others, but it's a mistake to assume that saving lives is easy and simple and all we lack is the will.
That's why Singer's "drowning child" analogy fails.
If that child's in front of me, I know that I can take action that will save his life. If that child is starving in the midst of a horribly complex social, political and military situation five thousand miles away, in a culture and environment I can't begin to understand, I'm not convinced I can do anything for him.
Thank you for your feedback! Your feedback is private.Because of the higher rate of population growth in the poor countries of the world, 88 percent of today's children are born poor, and only 12 percent rich.
Year by year the ratio becomes worse, as the fast-reproducing poor outnumber the slow-reproducing rich. So if Rich gives to Poor, he would be helping Poor fulfill interests it is wrong for him to fulfill, but less bad than it would be for Rich to use the money to advance his own interests, In this situation one might hold that it is morally required for Rich to give to poor and thereby help Poor fulfill interests it is wrong for her to pursue (when that would be less wrong than it would be for Rich to spend on himself).
Rich people are rich because of themselves and poor people are poor because of themselves, so if you want to steal from the rich that's bad idea. Poor people won't use the money to do great things or improve their money, they'll just spend without thinking, it's like giving a monkey a gun.
peter singers basic argument part 3 by donating to aid agencies, you can prevent suffering and death from the lack of food, shelter, and medical care, without sacrificing anything nearly as important.
G. Hardin - "Living on a Lifeboat" (in James E. White text) If we give them access instead of a share, we must assume some of those people will be more selfish than we are. since the rich deposit and the poor take. It's a TRANSFER system. Result: WE will pay, and enrich agri-business and shipping companies, to benefit people when it's.
No, it is not right to steal from the rich to give to the poor. Regardless of the reasons for it, stealing is not right – morally or legally. However, the rich, who have more than they need, should feel a responsibility to help those in need.