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Balancing Rights Essay

1831 words - 8 pages

Dr. Tom Regan, an American philosopher who specializes in animal rights theory, said “To treat human beings in ways that do not honor their independent value is to violate the most basic of human rights: the right of each person to be treated with respect” (Regan). When it comes to what we deserve, ethics and fairness lie along the same line. To be fair is to be ethical and just. To be just means to look out for the common interests of all people and to impart the upmost levels of respect. When the topic of justice is mentioned it almost always relates to humans, but what about animals? Are animals on the same level or is there a distinction between man and animal. In his essay, several times, Arora asks the question “What do we deserve”? Wallace brought out in his essay that it is morally correct to consider what animals deserve. A fair system of ethics is necessary in order to ensure that the lives of all existing and living are not exploited because all deserve to live a valued life. The length of a life does not matter but rather the quality of life.
It is important to develop a certain level of respect for each individual life in a society which will promote a fair system of justice. It is commonly stated that it is imperative to treat others better then they treat you. There can be lasting benefits and results from treating others the way they deserve to be treated. Genuine respect for an individual will bypass any social or economic barriers. Respect and morals work well together. When we acknowledge the person before us, respectfully, whether we are the rule maker or the person abiding by the rules it is possible to establish equal opportunity. A main theme in Arora’s essay is that family status and wealth should not determine the position of an individual in a society. In his essay Arora says “… a minority has not grown super rich, but for decades now, it has done so to the detriment of the lower social classes” (Arora 90). The issue here is that people forget the worth or value of others. For centuries it has been socially acceptable to treat those on the lower end of the “food chain” as less. There are countries that still function with a caste system and put members of society into classes where they cannot move up or down. That is not respect nor is it valuing life. Respect is important in a society because it leads to better communication and individuals are able to get along with one another. Respect builds strong bonds and builds bridges of solid communication and moral value. What better way to function in a society then to be able to communicate and work things out. The only way to distinguish between right and wrong is to establish a level a communication and human worth. It is vital that society notices not only the worth of each individual but also the capacity that everyone has to contribute to a well functioning society. Immanuel Kant, a German philosopher, encouraged that we treat people as ends in themselves and not just...

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