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» What would you do? (Question of Morals)

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    4th of Feb '13 @ 8:32 PM


Okay, so, my boyfriend asked me a question which really got me thinking and I wanted to get your guys answer and reasoning because I was really torn on this one.

You are faced with this situation:

Your working on a track with 6 coworkers. A train is barreling towards you out of control. There is nothing you can do to stop it and no one has enough time to get out of the way. You do, however have two options and have to make a decision quickly.

Option 1: You do nothing and the train kills 5 of your fellow workers working on the track.

Option 2: You pull a switch, causing the track to switch forcing the train to go a different direction, but in doing this 1 of your fellow coworkers gets killed by the train.

DISCUSS

Also, here is taking it a step further if you like these kinds of things.

You and the 6 coworkers are working together. You and a larger coworker are working on a track above and 5 other coworkers are working on the track below. On the track below you is a train is out of control and you cannot stop it. It is a straight path and the train can't be turned onto another track. There is also no way your coworkers could move out of the way in time. Here are your two options in this case.

Option 1: Do nothing, let the train hit the 5 coworkers, killing them all.

Option 2: Push your large co-worker off the tracks above onto the tracks below. He is large enough his weight would stop the train and save your 5 coworkers, but he would die in the process.



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Kashmir



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    4th of Feb '13 @ 10:55 PM


In situation 1, flip the switch. It seems paradoxical to value your morals over the lives of five other people.



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POURRITURE



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    4th of Feb '13 @ 11:18 PM


Posted by POURRITURE


In situation 1, flip the switch. It seems paradoxical to value your morals over the lives of five other people.


Yeah it does and my boyfriend has been reading a rather interesting book he has been telling me about. This was one of the things that was in it. It's basically talking about morals in different cultures I believe and different points of view.



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Kashmir



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Pom



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    4th of Feb '13 @ 11:56 PM


I would refuse to flip the switch, because then I would probably feel guilty about the (1) coworker for the rest of my life x.x

I can't really explain why I wouldn't flip the switch, but I just couldn't.



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    5th of Feb '13 @ 1:18 AM


The second scenario is easy. Have 1 person injured but alive or allow 5 to die? of course I choose to injure the one.

The second would be harder but not by much. By doing nothing, I will have still caused the death of 5 individuals even though I technically did nothing. I would rather actively cause the death of one to save the other 5.


Here's a harder one. And it shows much about who you are as a person. Try to answer as honestly as you can.

There are two tracks like in the other scenario but on one track their are 5 strangers and the other is your one true love, this person was hand crafted to be your soul mate and you will never be able to find anyone as good as them. The train is coming and you can either leave the track and let it kill the 5 strangers or you can save your true love.

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    5th of Feb '13 @ 3:04 AM


Posted by Tiny_dancer


The second scenario is easy. Have 1 person injured but alive or allow 5 to die? of course I choose to injure the one.

The second would be harder but not by much. By doing nothing, I will have still caused the death of 5 individuals even though I technically did nothing. I would rather actively cause the death of one to save the other 5.


Here's a harder one. And it shows much about who you are as a person. Try to answer as honestly as you can.

There are two tracks like in the other scenario but on one track their are 5 strangers and the other is your one true love, this person was hand crafted to be your soul mate and you will never be able to find anyone as good as them. The train is coming and you can either leave the track and let it kill the 5 strangers or you can save your true love.


I would be inclined to save the strangers. Rather than holding personal morals over the lives of other people, it would be holding potential emotions and experiences before the lives of other people. I would not wish to sacrifice every possible aspect of five people's lives for a singular possible aspect shared with another person.

Also this 'true love' individual, if they were truly that, would be dodgy as.



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    5th of Feb '13 @ 4:31 AM


Makes sense. I would have such a hard time with this. Either choice I made, I would go out and kill myself afterwards though. I couldn't live without my love but I couldn't live with knowing I was so selfish that I caused the death of 5 people who had their own loves to live for.smile_cry.gif

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    5th of Feb '13 @ 7:11 AM


Posted by Tiny_dancer


Makes sense. I would have such a hard time with this. Either choice I made, I would go out and kill myself afterwards though. I couldn't live without my love but I couldn't live with knowing I was so selfish that I caused the death of 5 people who had their own loves to live for.smile_cry.gif

I would have a hard time also. I can ponder what I'd do but knowing myself and how I handle high risk situations I would not act. How well I would fare in the aftermath would not even be taken into account. My preferences regarding what I'd do are not based on instinct, but during moments of this nature, instinct predominates.

And it's my instinct to do nothing and just stand there.



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    5th of Feb '13 @ 6:51 PM


This is so interesting! My sister and I were talking about this exact same problem less than a week ago. I had a long hard think about this one...here's what I came up with -

You are faced with being the direct cause of the death of one worker by either pushing them in the way or directing the train to their death...

Or more people died because you chose not to do anything.

I personally believe that making the decision YOURSELF to end one life to save others puts more...responsibility in your hands. I'd feel too much like I was acting like God with that kind of power. I think making the choice to do nothing is ever so less of your decision since it would have happened whether or not you were present at that moment.

Just my two cents. I think I could spend days debating this with someone. smile_heart.gif



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iMel



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    6th of Feb '13 @ 9:55 PM


I don't respond well to high stress situations so I'd probably panic and end up doing absolutely nothing within the required amount of time it needed to be done in. I definitely wouldn't shove anyone in front of a train, though -- even if it saved 5 people, I could still face charges for murdering the guy potentially. I guess that's selfish to think of it like that, but...



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    10th of Feb '13 @ 1:02 AM


For both situations, I would do the option where only one person dies. Sacrifice one to save many.

Take love and multiply it by infinity and take it to the depths of forever, and you would still only have a glimpse of how I feel for you.
~William Parish~



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    10th of Feb '13 @ 9:17 PM


For the first one It all depends on what is happening, the obvious part is that the train in on a collision course towards you and the co-workers.

There is also a lack of information how far apart are the co-workers from you? judging if they all are close you may have enough time to shove all 5 workers off the track with the end result of just killing yourself as a death toll leaving the remaining 5 works and the 1 worker on the opposing track alive.

For the second one, being a larger guy and a train going towards the 5, I would not be-able to force a large guy on to the other tracks, This will not end well in either way you choose, your are going against murder for the suggestion of killing another person weather or not you saved lives in the process, It would most likely force myself against the train to save all the people. Even knowing I may die but knowing that my own death will aid the others to live.

as for the Lover one, Well they may be my soul mate and all, but there are always going to be another person for you, hence it is hard to even look for one that is just right for you. Now as for answering that one it would also be judged by distance, if they were all close enough I would kill myself for them.

Mind you I am a person who would take a bullet for anyone who in need of the service. I have taken beatings for people in my past school years. I have stood up for others as well and helped many when they were kicked out, or booted out of the streets.



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Cassia



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    2nd of Mar '13 @ 10:58 AM


Oh wow, I was just reading about these problems yesterday!
I say right now that I would save the 5 people, but I'm not sure if I could flip the switch/push the person if I was really in the situation.



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xdudeitsemily



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    9th of May '14 @ 5:07 AM


In both situations I would let the train hit all 5 coworkers. I'd have survivor's guilt but I'd rather have that than try to live with myself knowing that I caused someone's death. I wouldn't want to let one other person die so that 5 other people could survive. I don't think anyone could blame me for reacting that way in that situation.



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Elisabeth



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    17th of Aug '14 @ 7:00 AM


It's really about letting 5 people die, or killing 1 person.

The second option would by law make me a murderer, and regardless of the 5 people that I saved, I would go to jail because I killed that one person. I would therefore most likely not flip the switch, because I value my own life more. It's not my duty to save other people and I'm definitely not going to jail over it for who knows how many years.

The second scenario seems very unrealistic to me, because one person cannot stop an entire train, no matter how fat he is. Anyway if this was possible somehow, my answer would be the same.



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    13th of Aug '15 @ 12:22 PM


I don't really know about what I would do in both situations because I wouldn't want anyone to die.

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    13th of Jun '16 @ 3:44 PM


@Kashmir "The Needs of the many out weigh the needs of the few...or the one." - Mr. Spock








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    15th of Jun '16 @ 12:01 AM


Honestly, if it was absolutely my ONLY choice, I would kill the 1 to save the 5 in both situations. They only reason I might not do that would be because either a) the one co-worker was someone very close to me (family member or SO) or b) because I was way too slow in reacting because I was super freaked out.

Yeah... favoritism. It's a strange day when you admit to yourself that yes, you would totally risk other people's lives to keep someone you care about safe, despite morals. The true question is, where is the limit? At how many people would you think "No, sorry, but I'm going to have to kill |blank| important-person-you-care-about to save |blank| amount-of-people." ?

... And off topic, this is totally why I love Star Trek. You deal with ethical and moral questions all the time, from The Original Series all the way to Voyager (not even going to mention Enterprise, except for saying that I'm not going to mention it... yeah).



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YayChocolate



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    10th of Jul '16 @ 9:09 AM


If everyone is equally close to me- flip the switch in one, do nothing in two.

It's odd. Logically I know that it would be best to sacrifice one person in situation two, but I don't think I would be able to do it. I'd most likely just freeze up. Not to mention the resentment that would come from the family of the person I pushed. In situation one I would still expect some anger from the family, but flipping a switch is still much less personal than pushing.

One thing that popped in my mind about situation two. A larger person could stop the train by being run over, okay. But what if you were also of a heavier build? This adds another layer of complexity, since if you were following the 'sacrifice one to save many' logic, wouldn't killing yourself be the most altruistic of the options? But self-preservation is the most prominent instinct in animals. What then? One way to escape responsibility would be to do nothing at all, but for others that would imply cowardice.



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    4th of Dec '16 @ 12:43 AM


In situation 1 I would flip the switch without even thinking about it. I mean it I probably wouldn't've thought of any of the repercussions of it.

In situation 2 if the person is big enough to stop a train then there is no way a single person could move them. smile_tongue.gif
On a more serious note even if I could some how move them, I still wouldn't. Less because I would directly be murdering some one and more because I wouldn't have even thought to do that in the first place.


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