A reflection on utilitarianism

A cardinal objection to utilitarianism as a moral theory has been that it is an inhuman theory, making upon us inhuman demands or requiring of us inhuman acts. Much of the work of utilitarian moral theorists has been an attempt to rebut this charge but, alas, the objection is largely sound and therefore such work is futile.

It is a pity that no utilitarian has had the courage to insist “Yes, my theory is inhuman. But it is humanity, not the theory, that is the problem…”

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