Peter Singer's Drowning Child

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Pages: 3

My goal with this paper is to prove that Singer does support his proposal well. I will present his “drowning child” case and prove how Singer applies it to his argument. I will also provide objections to Singer’s argument to support why I believe Singer supports his proposal well.
Peter Singer says in his article “Famine, Affluence, and Morality,” that you and I are morally obligated to sacrifice to stop something bad from happening, if we are not sacrificing something of moral importance. Because of his use of the words “moral importance” in his “2 weak” case, Singer’s argument is very broad. When I say broad, I mean there is a wide variety of what one would consider morally permissible to sacrifice and what would not be. With Singer’s “drowning
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Travis Timmerman challenges Singer’s “drowning child” case in his work, “A Reply to Singer.” He provides the example of a woman whose bank account has been hacked, and robbers are stealing money from her. Every five minutes the robbers are taking two-hundred dollars from her account. This woman can get the hackers to stop if she goes to the bank to hold her account. On her way to the bank, the woman sees multiple ponds with a drowning child in each. Timmerman says that this situation continues every day for the rest of this woman’s life. The woman must make the moral decision of whether to save every child she possibly can while losing her savings, or to let children die and stop the robbers. This woman’s money may be her only source of survival for the day, so if she were to sacrifice this to save a child drowning she would be sacrificing something of significant moral importance. This case Timmerman gives is not at all realistic. Also, Singer’s “Weak 2” argument and case of the drowning child does not include the sacrifice of something of equal moral significance. A case like the one Timmerman gives would also not apply to Singer’s “Weak 2” if sacrificing something of equal moral importance was in the equation. Because of this, I believe that Singer has still done a good job of supporting “Weak 2” with his “drowning child”