Morality of implementing RPD laws

The morality of any act, plays out in space and time. Some acts are good for the locals and bad for those over the horizon. Some acts produce immediate benefits for parents but then produce bad impacts for children.

An agency that feeds, clothes, shelters and improves the water supply of parents, does immediate good. When too many children survive, each with improved wellbeing, the environment overloads and collapses. The agency's original acts cause deaths that result from scarcity and social violence. If these later liabilities exceed the immediate benefits then the agency produces more harm than good.

Agency leadership is not irresponsible (immoral) for producing their actions until they personally understand the act's full outcomes. Not keeping the books or inept bookkeeping shields them from any impropriety. Maybe the way to help transition an agency from one that commits normal (immoral) actions in to one that commits alternative (more moral) actions is to show them how to keep their books.

In deciding if RPD laws are moral, we have to help global constituents learn to keep better books. If we fail, then humankind will make the same mistakes as the agency's leadership. That is humankind will think implementing RPD laws is immoral when in fact it is more moral than not implementing them.

To make this statement clear, let me provide the following example. If every woman at the time of Christ had only three children and each of those child lived to an age of 60, then the population of the world would have reached (today's population) of 6.4 billion people in 300 years or during the time of the Romans.

Actually the average woman, during that time period, had many more than 3 children, so why did it take an additional 1700 years to reach 6 billion?

The answer is most people during that time period had short terrible lives. Often never getting old enough to have children. Each person had a much higher probability of dying from deprivation or violence than old age. Only a few people, with wealth and ability to isolate themselves from scarcity and social conflict, had low enough death rates to contribute to rapidly increasing population.

Had humankind been keeping the books, it might have become aware that behaviors to create babies, only to have them have deaths due to scarcity, were immoral acts. Especially if there was an alternative behavior (having fewer children) that could have prevented most of the deaths due to scarcity and conflict.

Most of us living today are still blind to huge liabilities resulting from having too many babies which cause us to have too many tragic deaths. We, in the first world, have moved most of these harsh deaths to people not in view. That is those that die live out of our sight, either in space or time. However, the separation between the actors and the injured may be rapidly narrowing. The injured might soon live in our neighborhood. Our kids might have greatly reduced wellbeing.

Like people riding in cars before an accident, we are blind to how fast these unwanted impacts can arrive, how powerful they can be, and how powerless we are to stop them after they are in process.

Those that have experienced the mini disasters like Darfur are much like the injured and dead in a car accident. They can not from experiencing the event understand what happened and give value to RPD Laws. Why should they, people injuried in car accidents are not in a better position because of the experienvce to understand what happened and why seatbelts have utility.

This means we must use a different learning model. We have to use abstract views of history and future scenarios to teach ourselves that what appears to us today as immoral RPD laws are actually less immoral than the consequences of not implementing them.

To help people develop this line of reasoning I have designed and tested several SKIL dinners. The discussions have helped people recognize which benefits and liabilities they are including and which they are unknowingly excluding in the process of choosing their beliefs and behavior. One of them deals with transitioning to a belief that RPD is necessart. That implementing OCPF Law is moral.

The dinner outlines can be found on under dinners. (2001-2002. One Dinner, the RU-486 Dinner was found to be very useful and can be found directly at this URL.

SKIL holds these dinners on request. Let us know and we will come guide a discussion with your friends. Read the URL an see if it sounds like a fun, interesting, and educational evening.


Jack Alpert (Bio)     mail to:     (homepage)      position papers

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