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Book part
Publication date: 25 July 2015

Matthew Beard

This paper compares two approaches to the moral justifications for killing in war: the forfeiture approach, which sees killing as justified when the victim has forfeited…

Abstract

This paper compares two approaches to the moral justifications for killing in war: the forfeiture approach, which sees killing as justified when the victim has forfeited his or her right not to be killed, and the double-effect approach, which argues that even if intentional killing is absolutely prohibited, that killing can still be morally acceptable under certain conditions, most notably if it is not the intended, desired outcome of a person’s chosen action. The double-effect approach is considered out of fashion in contemporary military ethical literate. I argue that it warrants equal attention as an internally viable and coherent account of the morality of killing, and is preferable in at least one way: that it protects combatants from being necessarily culpable of killing merely by serving in active combat positions.

By defending an alternate framework to the forfeiture approach to killing which is most popular in today’s military ethical literature, I provide an opportunity for new and increased philosophical reflection and discourse on the ethics of killing, as well as new opportunity for defenders of double-effect to make a substantive contribution to the field. This paper demonstrates the internal consistency of arguments that seek to utilise DDE, including its relevance to individual self-defence and individual killing in war.

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Conscience, Leadership and the Problem of ‘Dirty Hands’
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-203-0

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Book part
Publication date: 24 June 2020

Katherine T. Baggaley and Phillip C. Shon

Published over 30 years ago, Seductions of Crime has transformed criminology as a discipline, the foreground factors that make criminal behavior a morally alluring…

Abstract

Published over 30 years ago, Seductions of Crime has transformed criminology as a discipline, the foreground factors that make criminal behavior a morally alluring endeavor deemed an important point to consider in accounts of criminal action by those even in mainstream criminology. In this chapter, we provide an update and revision to Katz's theory of righteous slaughter in an institutional context. We argue that killing is an overcoming, a negotiated and contingent outcome that is accomplished through the emotional and behavioral management of the self, the killing a reflexive reaction, driven by fear and excitement of the situation, peppered with a heavy heaping of moral agonizing. We argue that the killings and refrained killings carried out by soldiers and police are negative character, lacking the sensuous and affirmative character of an ontological project that Katz described.

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Jack Katz
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-072-7

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Drones and the Law
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-249-9

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2000

Herschel Prins

So‐called ‘serial killing’ is frequently a topic of both professional and media concern and comment. As such, the term can be misused and may serve to obfuscate rather…

Abstract

So‐called ‘serial killing’ is frequently a topic of both professional and media concern and comment. As such, the term can be misused and may serve to obfuscate rather than illuminate.This short contribution proposes a socio‐legal classification of all forms of unlawful killing into which serial killing might best be fitted.

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The British Journal of Forensic Practice, vol. 2 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6646

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 1995

Terry D. Edwards

Uses statistics from FBI annual reports (1985‐1992) to compare felonious killings, analyzing and comparing with data for deaths of non‐state police officers. Finds that…

Abstract

Uses statistics from FBI annual reports (1985‐1992) to compare felonious killings, analyzing and comparing with data for deaths of non‐state police officers. Finds that state police officers are feloniously killed in proportional numbers to non‐state officers, with both classes showing a recent downward trend. Calls for further research, by region or state, into the higher percentage of killings in Southern USA. Finds similar patterns in state and non‐state police officer killings but identifies some elements of divergence. Recommends that this data be used in police training to emphasize high‐risk factors such as routine traffic stops. Notes that domestic disputes do not cause a large number of police killings. Suggests that the wearing of body armor be made mandatory.

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American Journal of Police, vol. 14 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0735-8547

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Book part
Publication date: 1 September 2008

Ruthy Lazar

The ways in which battered women respond to domestic violence, and the ways the legal system constructs those responses, constitute the framework of this chapter. The…

Abstract

The ways in which battered women respond to domestic violence, and the ways the legal system constructs those responses, constitute the framework of this chapter. The analysis focuses on mitigation in sentences of battered women who killed their abusers and examines the manifestation of agency and victimization in the mitigation structure. My thesis is that these women are perceived by courts solely as victims who lack agency and autonomy. Three main themes emerge from the analysis: first, the courts focus on the mental state of the defendants, stressing their psychological deficiencies as the primary mitigating factors. Secondly, many cases are categorized by courts as unique cases. Thirdly, in several cases the courts portray the women as “victims of circumstances”. An alternative analysis to that offered by the courts, one that seeks to reframe the mitigation process, is introduced in this chapter. According to this analysis, the narrative used in cases of battered women who kill should be changed to reflect dimensions of agency and resistance. In the suggested discourse, the abuse these women suffer is acknowledged, but is used to explain the women's urge to self-preservation and thus, the rationality and reasonableness of their acts.

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Studies in Law, Politics and Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-090-2

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Book part
Publication date: 30 September 2010

Robert B. Smith

This chapter explicates the logic of a computational agent-based model bearing on the willingness of perpetrator agents to conduct genocidal actions against Jewish people…

Abstract

This chapter explicates the logic of a computational agent-based model bearing on the willingness of perpetrator agents to conduct genocidal actions against Jewish people during World War II. Given realistic distributions of benefits and costs and sufficient time, as a joint consequence of these distributions and interpersonal influence the model readily creates agents who are avowed anti-Semites, Nazis, and perpetrators of the genocide, even transforming agents characterized initially by lower levels of anti-Semitism. Although many agents initially exhibit dissonance (i.e., a disjunction) between their attitudes and choices, toward the end of this period their anti-Semitic attitudes and choices become consonant (i.e., internally consistent). Experiments and parameter studies using this model indicate that different distributions of benefits and costs, changed legitimacy of authority, and different values of anti-Semitism of influential agents can modify the growth of prejudice, Nazism, and genocidal choices in these random-number-based Monte Carlo trials. The results clarify the conflicting interpretations of Goldhagen and Browning concerning the genocidal actions of a battalion of perpetrators and the role of propaganda in reducing moral costs. Six hypotheses that focus the testing of the model can be generalized creating insights about other genocides.

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Theorizing the Dynamics of Social Processes
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-223-5

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Book part
Publication date: 17 December 2008

Guillermina Jasso

When a society overthrows a ruler – call the ruler Caesar – what determines whether Caesar is killed or enslaved? This chapter presents a model of killing versus enslaving…

Abstract

When a society overthrows a ruler – call the ruler Caesar – what determines whether Caesar is killed or enslaved? This chapter presents a model of killing versus enslaving Caesar, based on a new theory which unifies justice, status, and power. The model pertains to societies which value ordinal goods like bravery, yielding predictions for three of the five types of societies – justice-nonmaterialistic, status, and power-nonmaterialistic. Results cover members’ gains, effects of own rank and group size, and relative gains from killing or enslaving Caesar. Further results suggest that Caesar will be killed only in a justice-nonmaterialistic society, and from the noblest of motives – to achieve equal gains for members.

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Justice
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84855-104-6

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Article
Publication date: 4 March 2014

Stuart Kirby, Jerry Graham and Michelle Green

Spree killing impacts significantly on emergency services and is becoming more prevalent across the world. The purpose of this paper is to explore the Cumbrian spree…

Abstract

Purpose

Spree killing impacts significantly on emergency services and is becoming more prevalent across the world. The purpose of this paper is to explore the Cumbrian spree killing, which resulted in the fatal shooting of 12 people with a further 11 wounded. This study highlights why these events are so difficult to manage in an attempt to assist policy makers and practitioners deal with them more effectively.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative methodology was used, examining open source information and internal police documentation. This was supported by semi-structured interviews with command staff (three), and questionnaires involving a representative group of police staff (11), who were all deployed on the incident.

Findings

This case study mirrored the characteristics of many other spree killings. The sophistication of the killer, together with the speed of mobility, significantly increases the challenges posed to the police, specifically in terms of: deployment, decision making, interoperability and managing the media. Further, it questions the effectiveness of normal command and control management approaches that are typically used in these situations.

Practical implications

Spree killing (active shooter) events are increasing across the globe. This study highlights the critical challenges to be dealt with. It argues a more innovative inter-agency paradigm is needed to deal with crimes in action.

Originality/value

There are few academic papers in relation to spree killing. This paper analyses the factors that impact upon the effectiveness of the police response.

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International Journal of Emergency Services, vol. 3 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2047-0894

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Book part
Publication date: 12 November 2018

Judith Kennedy and Michael Kennedy

Euthanasia and assisted suicide is about changing the law to enable doctors, under certain circumstances, to intentionally kill patients. For proponents the issues have…

Abstract

Euthanasia and assisted suicide is about changing the law to enable doctors, under certain circumstances, to intentionally kill patients. For proponents the issues have been determining what are “appropriate circumstances” for such activity and gathering up enough political support to win the day on numbers. The community and medical profession have been exposed to years of misinformation about euthanasia, and advocates have become so vocal that contrary positions are now barely heard. Nevertheless, there are enormous adverse implications for all healthcare professionals. Clinical management in the twenty-first century has moved well past scenarios painted to justify killing the patient. The inclusion of killing in the therapeutic armamentarium will cause an inexorable erosion of what is at present an absolute protection for the patient, the doctor, and other healthcare professionals.

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Applied Ethics in the Fractured State
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-600-6

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