When is it okay to kill?
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26-06-2015, 08:42 AM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(26-06-2015 08:22 AM)Chas Wrote:  Killing in self defense or defense of the innocent or weak. Those are moral acts.

I agree that allowing the innocent or weak to be harmed when you could stop it is reprehensible. However, I was attempting to distinguish that these are more of a societal acceptance of killing due to our current culture. Our current culture is that of limited technology or understanding to address why there would even be people to defend ourselves or others from.
It is our overall lack of understanding of psychopathy and providing resources, which forces us to even be in those situations to begin with.

Maybe, I am just arguing semantics, or even avoiding the central point of the original question.Just that we still have to make the choice whether to take a life, means we have a lot of other questions that need to be addressed in society.

“ moral virtue comesabout as a result of habit.” --Aristotle

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26-06-2015, 05:06 PM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(26-06-2015 08:42 AM)jthiret Wrote:  
(26-06-2015 08:22 AM)Chas Wrote:  Killing in self defense or defense of the innocent or weak. Those are moral acts.

I agree that allowing the innocent or weak to be harmed when you could stop it is reprehensible. However, I was attempting to distinguish that these are more of a societal acceptance of killing due to our current culture. Our current culture is that of limited technology or understanding to address why there would even be people to defend ourselves or others from.
It is our overall lack of understanding of psychopathy and providing resources, which forces us to even be in those situations to begin with.

Maybe, I am just arguing semantics, or even avoiding the central point of the original question.Just that we still have to make the choice whether to take a life, means we have a lot of other questions that need to be addressed in society.

If psychopathy provides an adaptive advantage within the context of modern civilization, then how can you objectively argue than it is not a more evolved trait than the ones you'd personally rather see humanity exhibit? The process of evolution doesn't share your bias against violence. It is concerned, so to speak, only with what works and what doesn't.

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27-06-2015, 12:24 AM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(26-06-2015 05:06 PM)yakherder Wrote:  If psychopathy provides an adaptive advantage within the context of modern civilization, then how can you objectively argue than it is not a more evolved trait than the ones you'd personally rather see humanity exhibit? The process of evolution doesn't share your bias against violence. It is concerned, so to speak, only with what works and what doesn't.

Humans are a social species, we have always relied on communities for our survival. That is the number one advantage that we have always had. Violence breaks down communities, and is a selective disadvantage. It is not "my" bias towards violence which evolutionary processes share. If we didn't have empathy we wouldn't take care of our young, and therefore wouldn't produce more generations. To say that psychopathy provides an adaptive advantage, is the same as saying killing equals reproducing.

Evolution is biased as in it prefers that which creates more generations over that which does not.

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27-06-2015, 12:30 AM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(27-06-2015 12:24 AM)jthiret Wrote:  Violence breaks down communities, and is a selective disadvantage.

The problem with this reasoning is that selection acts upon individuals, not populations.
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27-06-2015, 12:49 AM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(27-06-2015 12:30 AM)Thumpalumpacus Wrote:  
(27-06-2015 12:24 AM)jthiret Wrote:  Violence breaks down communities, and is a selective disadvantage.

The problem with this reasoning is that selection acts upon individuals, not populations.

That is a slight misunderstanding of how evolution works. Individual changes are not the driving force of evolution. It is the changes that give a population advantages which get passed down through the generations.
Selection does in fact not act on individuals. Individual traits are only advantageous if they are "fit" enough to effect a population. This will provide the population with a selective advantage to produce more generations. Evolution 101 @ Berkeley

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27-06-2015, 12:56 AM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(27-06-2015 12:49 AM)jthiret Wrote:  
(27-06-2015 12:30 AM)Thumpalumpacus Wrote:  The problem with this reasoning is that selection acts upon individuals, not populations.

That is a slight misunderstanding of how evolution works. Individual changes are not the driving force of evolution. It is the changes that give a population advantages which get passed down through the generations.
Selection does in fact not act on individuals. Individual traits are only advantageous if they are "fit" enough to effect a population. This will provide the population with a selective advantage to produce more generations. Evolution 101 @ Berkeley

You'll also have to demonstrate cultural effects on genetic evolution, to wit, that which benefits a culture can come to influence the genome via cultural selection.

Violence breaks down communities, but because genetics aren't expressed at the communal level there's nothing for selection to grasp and modify. Without considering cultural evolution's role in the process, the argument that violence is a selective disadvantage which breaks down communities doesn't seem very explanatory.

Your link adds little value to this discussion, and doesn't address my point. Was there a particular passage you wanted to apply here?
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27-06-2015, 01:09 AM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(27-06-2015 12:49 AM)jthiret Wrote:  
(27-06-2015 12:30 AM)Thumpalumpacus Wrote:  The problem with this reasoning is that selection acts upon individuals, not populations.

That is a slight misunderstanding of how evolution works. Individual changes are not the driving force of evolution. It is the changes that give a population advantages which get passed down through the generations.
Selection does in fact not act on individuals. Individual traits are only advantageous if they are "fit" enough to effect a population. This will provide the population with a selective advantage to produce more generations. Evolution 101 @ Berkeley

Nope - it is changes that benefit individuals to greater reproductive success that is the engine of evolution.

Nowhere in that link do they support your assertion.

There is no conceivable mechanism for what you are asserting.

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27-06-2015, 01:27 AM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(27-06-2015 12:49 AM)jthiret Wrote:  That is a slight misunderstanding of how evolution works. Individual changes are not the driving force of evolution. It is the changes that give a population advantages which get passed down through the generations.
Selection does in fact not act on individuals. Individual traits are only advantageous if they are "fit" enough to effect a population. This will provide the population with a selective advantage to produce more generations. Evolution 101 @ Berkeley

I admit, I am not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but what I read at that link does not appear to be what you are saying here..... Blink

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27-06-2015, 01:35 AM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(27-06-2015 01:09 AM)Chas Wrote:  There is no conceivable mechanism for what you are asserting.

I am not asserting anything I was providing links to the information about evolution and giving a synopsis of what it says about selection. Originally I was speaking about psychopathy as a disorder, then it was said
(26-06-2015 05:06 PM)yakherder Wrote:  If psychopathy provides an adaptive advantage within the context of modern civilization, then how can you objectively argue than it is not a more evolved trait than the ones you'd personally rather see humanity exhibit?

The point I was making is that psychopathy is not an adaptive advantage by explaining how that killing people is a disadvantage to a social species such as ourselves and in from the fact that we separate psychopaths from society they can not reproduce to create more psychopaths making psychopathy a disadvantage.

The mechanisms of natural selection are that a more advantageous trait allows for more reproduction, which will then in turn overtime alter the traits of "all individuals in a population" which is directly from the link I provided from the Berkeley 101 section on natural selection.

Psychopathy is a selective disadvantage, because simply put we remove psychopaths from society limiting their ability to reproduce and in turn limiting their effects on the population.

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27-06-2015, 01:58 AM
RE: When is it okay to kill?
(27-06-2015 01:27 AM)Banjo Wrote:  I admit, I am not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but what I read at that link does not appear to be what you are saying here..... Blink

A direct quote from what I was referencing:

"The more advantageous trait, brown coloration, which allows the beetle to have more offspring, becomes more common in the population. If this process continues, eventually, all individuals in the population will be brown."

I said
(27-06-2015 12:49 AM)jthiret Wrote:  Individual traits are only advantageous if they are "fit" enough to effect a population. This will provide the population with a selective advantage to produce more generations.

I may have not paraphrased it clearly enough,but at the time I posted it I felt I did a satisfactory job.

I honestly don't understand the confusion of many of the responses I am getting. I may just be too dense. From my limited understanding of evolution, the literature on it appears to say that if an individual can't reproduce that individual trait can not effect a population enough to be a selective advantage.

Unfortunately taking the original question of "when is it ok to kill" and analyzing an emotive concept in a evolutionary perspective I opened "a can of worms"

I am of the hope we all agree to some extent that killing is bad in general , and only acceptable relative to specific situations.

I had only wished to bring this into the societal level issues which forces us into situations where we have to make the choice to kill. I am dreadfully sorry if i caused this to fall into a debate about all of the minutia tangential to the original question.

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