Evil Essay: Evil Is A Degree Of Wrong

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The perception of what is defined as wrong varies as much as the definition of what is defined as evil. Philosophers have argued that evil is a distinct category from wrong while others have opposed this idea, stating that evil is an extreme wrong. Thus, in terms of an act being both wrong and evil come to the terms that evil is or can be an extreme wrong. I will begin by arguing that evil is not in a different category of wrong, but it is a degree of wrong. Two given factors have been claimed to be categorized as evil motives, these factors are the intention of harm and the act of wrongdoings both are in terms of human actions. Yet, philosophers such as Eve Garrard argue that evil is qualitatively distinct from wrong. However, this objection …show more content…
An example of wrongdoing is a student cheating on a test. It is a wrong since the students used an unethical method to take his test. Yet, many would not perceive it as an act of evil, since it did not bring a significant intent of harm. This begs the question of what extent is a wrongdoing consider evil? Claudia Card offers her theory of evil. Card’s main argument of evil is that it is defined by 2 factors, one of them being evil a foreseeable intolerable harm and the other is culpable wrongdoing. She distinguishes evil from wrongdoing by stating that “nature and severity of the harms, distinguish evil from ordinary wrongs” (). I agree with this statement since not all acts that are wrong are evil demanding on the degree of harm caused. Card uses her atrocity paradigm to illustrate the differences of evil wrongdoings and ordinary wrongdoing. She illustrates that atrocities are forms of evil, but justifies that not all atrocities are evil. To illustrate, a natural disaster such as a hurricane or a tsunami be an atrocity, but not an evil. It is not justified as evil since there is no human act to create a natural disaster with the intention to create significant harm to …show more content…
Garrard considers evil as an intensifier in which it can create suffering, yet harm is not enough to be considered evil. In which case, she considers that “the evil of evil actions is to be understood in terms of the evil dispositions which produce them” (p44). Meaning, that the evil act is done by the evildoer who intended to do this evil act. To further clarify this argument, Garrard considers silence a factor of whether a wrong is distinct from an evil act. An example that Garrard indicates is the matter of a killer killing his victim. If he thinks about the advantages of killing his victim compared to not thinking about the advantages but just killing the victim. The first has a weight of considerations of knowing that the act is wrong, whereas the latter has nothing to outweigh the matter of killing someone (Garrard p53). This example suggests that the difference between these two mindsets leads to the matter that considering moral considerations of the acts is what makes the act wrong, whereas not considering anything about the act, makes the matter

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