Christopher Pratt (cpratt) wrote,
Christopher Pratt

Moral Philosophy Exam

A big television company regularly broadcast a news programme informing the viewers of bad deeds: not the bad deeds of corporations who might withdraw advertising revenues, or the bad deeds of big businessmen and government officials who could afford to bring strong libel actions, but the exploitive practices of small private landlords, tradesmen and moneylenders. This did some social good and entertained viewers, who were also encouraged to help the programme by supplying it with evidences of scandalous instances.

So one day the broadcasters heard of a man who liked horses but had become so poor that the few he owned were badly fed and stabled. The broadcasters tried to contact the horses' owner but he hid from them. They besieged his house with a camera crew until he emerged and was filmed fleeing from an interviewer who ran after him shouting unanswered questions. This was broadcast along with distant views of the horses, the faces and voices of concerned neighbours, th ecomments of a qualified animal doctor. The owner was subsequently charged with cruelty to animals by the Royal Society for Prevevention of Cruelty to Animals, was found guilty and jailed for several months as he could not afford to pay a fine. The horses were humanely killed because nobody else wanted them.

Poll #292075 Moral Philosophy Exam

Which of the following cared most for the horses?

Their owner.
The broadcasters.

Who gained most by these events?

Lawyers conducting the trial.
The broadcasters.
Other horses with incompetent owners.

Who lost most by these events?

The owner.
The horses.

From Alasdair Gray, The Ends Of Our Tethers, published October 2, 2003.

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