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Why is murder wrong?

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    Why is it actually wrong to murder someone else, or for that matter do anything to anyone else? The usual answer is because you are taking someone's life away without their permission or you'll hurt their loved ones etc. But so what? Surely if we are strong enough to kill someone else we should be able to for our own benefit. I am not trying to be controversial. I just want to know exactly why murder is wrong.
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    Er, why is the OP a troll? Thinking that morality is entirely objective, immutable and independent is useless. Of course murder is socially wrong, but is it really intrinsically wrong? Is anything really intrinsically wrong?
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    (Original post by coren111)
    Why is it actually wrong to murder someone else, or for that matter do anything to anyone else? The usual answer is because you are taking someone's life away without their permission or you'll hurt their loved ones etc. But so what? Surely if we are strong enough to kill someone else we should be able to for our own benefit. I am not trying to be controversial. I just want to know exactly why murder is wrong.

    Imagine if someone murdered your mother.

    Imagine that feeling.

    Inflicting that feeling on people is just one reason why murder is wrong.
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    (Original post by coren111)
    I'm being serious. Why is murder wrong?
    Because its not fair, why should you have the right to take away someone elses life? Its not yours to decide what happens with.. as you said above "if it is beneficial for you" .. this is a very selfish thing to say, in this world we dont only do things for a personal gain. Im sure if someone killed your parents because they were competiting for the same job as the killer and so by getting rid of them the killer gets the job. surely you would have something very serious to say about this behaviour.
    I cant actually believe people think like this. its disgusting IMO
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    I think if the OP is taking this from more of a philosophical/intrinsic value of actions view, then the question is pretty valid and not as stupid as you all think.
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    Because if murder wasn't viewed as wrong, then everyone would be killed and there'd be nobody left to ponder upon this question.
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    (Original post by strawberrywine_)
    I think if the OP is taking this from more of a philosophical/intrinsic value of actions view, then the question is pretty valid and not as stupid as you all think.
    I don't think it's a stupid question, yet surely any mentally stable human could empathise with the feelings of mourning that would occur among the murdered's relatives, friends and peers.?
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    There is absoloutly nothing wrong with it. They maybe laws against it making it wrong if you know what i mean but it is not actually wrong.
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    Because if it wasn't illegal, then way too many people would be killed or seriously injured, it would cost the country far too much in care etc and tax would be extortionate to pay for it!! On a more serious note... do you think any teachers, police officers, lawyers or mother in laws would still be alive if murder was allowed! Ok not so serious but hey...
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    because your taking something (a life) which isnt yours to take and its worse than stealing because you can ever get it back. its also taking a son, daughter, friend, auntie or uncle.
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    (Original post by Well_Hello)
    I don't think it's a stupid question, yet surely any mentally stable human could empathise with the feelings of mourning that would occur among the murdered's relatives, friends and peers.?
    Of course, and you're completely right: Mentally stable. But my post was more on the lines of the fact that we consider murder to be morally wrong because we've been successfully educated by our culture and by societal norms to have a "correct" and absolute opinion of the morality of murder. Our prohibition of murder only represents an objectively valid moral principle, but it's not to say that murder is intrinsically wrong, as no action is ever really intrinsically wrong.

    Never do philosophy a level.
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    because life is sacred.
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    (Original post by strawberrywine_)
    Of course, and you're completely right: Mentally stable. But my post was more on the lines of the fact that we consider murder to be morally wrong because we've been successfully educated by our culture and by societal norms to have a "correct" and absolute opinion of the morality of murder. Our prohibition of murder only represents an objectively valid moral principle, but it's not to say that murder is intrinsically wrong, as no action is ever really intrinsically wrong.

    Never do philosophy a level.
    :rolleyes:

    But I agree, from a philosophical point of view, it isn't that silly a question.
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    (Original post by MrGumby)
    :rolleyes:

    But I agree, from a philosophical point of view, it isn't that silly a question.
    That wasn't actually an insult, it was merely telling him that if you don't want to over-analyse and doubt everything then don't take philosophy a level :tongue:
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    Only do what you will want to be made a rule for all to follow. If killing is permitted or moral... then your life is in danger. Communities who followed such an "immoral" principle will have died out i.e. natural selection has been such that people today are genetically predisposed to be averse to murder.
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    (Original post by strawberrywine_)
    Of course, and you're completely right: Mentally stable. But my post was more on the lines of the fact that we consider murder to be morally wrong because we've been successfully educated by our culture and by societal norms to have a "correct" and absolute opinion of the morality of murder. Our prohibition of murder only represents an objectively valid moral principle, but it's not to say that murder is intrinsically wrong, as no action is ever really intrinsically wrong.

    Never do philosophy a level.
    Surely this has become our "societal norm" due to our innate empathy or perhaps morals? If 99.9 percent of people naturaly understand the unfairness and cruelty of murder it must be regarded as wrong..
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    (Original post by coren111)
    Why is it actually wrong to murder someone else, or for that matter do anything to anyone else? The usual answer is because you are taking someone's life away without their permission or you'll hurt their loved ones etc. But so what? Surely if we are strong enough to kill someone else we should be able to for our own benefit. I am not trying to be controversial. I just want to know exactly why murder is wrong.
    This is a good question.

    From a Darwinian perspective; it is bad to kill others as it means that you are more likely to be killed, it also means that you might be killing those who may be able to help you in the future, on top of that you might be killing those who share your genes. Therefore, we have evolved to have a feeling that killing is instinctively wrong.

    Is there something intrinsically evil about murder; no. We kill bacteria, plants, other animals all the time. However, when it comes to homo sapiens it is different we have a Darwinian moral code to abide by.
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    Don't you worry your pretty little head about it, just get back in kitchen and make me some tea. Good girl.
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    (Original post by strawberrywine_)
    That wasn't actually an insult, it was merely telling him that if you don't want to over-analyse and doubt everything then don't take philosophy a level :tongue:
    haha dw...I didn't take it as an insult

    and I've never done a philosophy A level :ninja:

    yeh, but, back to those calling the OP a troll, philosophically you can't just rest on the assumption that it is wrong.
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    (Original post by Pavlik)
    Morality is a means of resolving conflicts of interests. Certianly you may take no interest in morality, in which case to you nothing seems wrong - OK, that's your loss when you wind up in prison.

    But, if you are to be a moral person then the only way in which murder can be morally justified, i.e. not wrong, is if you can find a justifiable ethic that would condone murder in certain conditions.

    Most of the time, no justifiable ethic would condone murder. However, a utilitarian ethic that was concerned only with the passing on of your genes, whilst it would still not condone murder in general (where murder tends to mean the killing of fellow citizens within a society), might in certain circumstances condone such a thing as ethnic cleansing, including what might be described as organised murder.

    I refer to such an ethic as adaptive utilitarianism, and I do believe that it is a justifiable ethic.
    Do you have any idea whatsoever what utilitarianism is?

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Updated: February 23, 2009
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