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Alan Soble’s Article “Sexual Use And What To Do About It

993 words - 4 pages

Kant’s second formulation is the formula of the end in itself, sometimes referred to as the principle of respect for persons. This formulation states that individuals need to treat the humanity or self as an end and not a means to an end. Treating people to an end means, respecting other people as moral agents with goals and projects to pursue in their lives. Kant’s second formulation states that an individual should never treat other people the same way as they treat inanimate objects. Kant offers a definition of sexual desires and sexual use in the metaphysics of morals in consistency with his moral system. Sex has moved away from the patriarchal conception of it where the rape victims claim to have exclusive rights, which has replaced Kantian conceptions in ideas of sexual objectification, and the dominance of consent in distinguishing between the acceptable an unacceptable morality. It is true that humans have to engage in sexual acts for procreation.

Kant’s own solution to the sexual problem is that sexual activity is permissible only in the context of heterosexual, monogamous lifelong marriage. In this case, Kant’s solution to the problem is a thick externalism that is minimalist. Howard Williams made a shrewd observation on Kant’s solution that the most significant of Kant’s argument involves treating oneself and their partners as objects. Therefore, this clearly, demonstrate that marriage is the only ethical desirable context for sex, Kant should start from better premise than the claims that sexual activities are restricted to marriage.

There are two proposed solutions to the problem, the internalist solution and the externalist solution. Furthermore, the internalist resolutions offer advice on the modification of the character of sexual activity so that the individuals engaging in the sexual activity conform to Kant’s Second Formulation. In this case, the internalists restrain their impulses on natural sexual expression. In this case, mutual consent is necessary for morality of sexual acts. There are two ways in which internalism is expressed, the behavioral and psychological internalism. The behavioral internalism is a process through which the physical components of the sexual acts constitute moral differences. In this case, sexual desires are defined according to the desires for contact with another person’s body, and the consequent pleasure brought by the physical contact. On the other hand, the psychological internalism occurs in accordance to the different attitudes present during the sexual act. These attitudes are the attitudes that repudiate between morally wrong acts and destructive mutual pleasures.

According to the externalist solution, morality necessitates the placement of restraints on the conditions, under which the sexual activities are performed. This sets the background that sexual acts occur enabling the satisfaction of Second Formulation. Minimalist externalism claims that morality requires the...

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