I have no choice.
September 4, 2006 6:03 AM Subscribe
Is it ethically possible to be a lawyer and believe in determinism?
posted by liquorice to Religion & Philosophy (33 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
By determinism’s line of thinking (if I have this correct), free will doesn’t exist and as such we should not be held morally accountable for our actions as they are not truly “free”.
If this is so, or at least, if you believe it is so, can you then go on to have a career in a field which is centred on prosecuting individuals/groups for their actions?
It seems incompatible to me. I know there is the argument that while free will may not exist, praise/blame helps promote/deter future actions and while this line of thinking makes sense to some extent it still does not sit well. You’re still prosecuting someone who had no free will in their actions.
I guess what I’m really asking is, is it possible to be human and truly believe in determinism? It seems that it’s just natural for us to condemn some people’s actions and celebrate others.
If I’ve got the whole idea of determinism wrong, forgive me and try and explain it as I’ve only garnered this from my university philosophy classes. Thank ye.