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24. Applied Ethics / A. Decision Conflicts / 5. Omissions

[harm done by a failure to act]

10 ideas
The highest degree of morality performs all that is appropriate, omitting nothing [Chrysippus]
Nations are not obliged to help one-another, but are obliged not to harm one another [Grotius, by Tuck]
There are mere omissions (through ignorance, perhaps), and people can 'commit an omission' [Chisholm]
It is not true that killing and allowing to die (or acts and omissions) are morally indistinguishable [Foot]
Making a runaway tram kill one person instead of five is diverting a fatal sequence, not initiating one [Foot]
Acts and Omissions: bad consequences are morally better if they result from an omission rather than an act [Glover]
It doesn't seem worse to switch off a life-support machine than to forget to switch it on [Glover]
Harmful omissions are unavoidable, while most harmful acts can be avoided [Glover]
The act/omission distinction is important for duties, but less so for consequences [LaFollette]
Utilitarians conflate acts and omissions; causing to drown and failing to save are the same [Shorten]