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Homosexual male couple wants to adopt a child. What will Rousseau, Benedict, and Aquinas argue. What is your view Explain - Essay Example

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When studying Philosophy and ethics, it is easy to think that the ethics of people who are long dead bear very little relevance to contemporary issues. However influential they were in another time, how can one enter into substantive dialogue with them in our time? This paper…
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Homosexual male couple wants to adopt a child. What will Rousseau, Benedict, and Aquinas argue. What is your view Explain
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March 2, Homosexual Adoption: ical Views on a Contemporary Issue When studying Philosophy and ethics, it is easy to think that the ethics of people who are long dead bear very little relevance to contemporary issues. However influential they were in another time, how can one enter into substantive dialogue with them in our time? This paper will attempt to do so, by imagining the views of Rousseau, Benedict and Aquinas in comparison with my own, in response to a male homosexual couple wanting to adopt a child.
This is an ethical issue because some people feel it is morally wrong or unnatural to be homosexual, or to be romantically coupled with a person of the same gender, and that children need to be protected from such people. Others feel that adults have a right to express sexual preference, that it is a private choice and not a moral issue at all, but that children need a mother and a father which, by definition, a male homosexual couple cannot provide. Still others feel that children need parents to love and guide them, and that sexual preference is not pertinent.
Rousseau claimed that individual freedom comes from sacrificing personal liberty to the “general will”, so that the common interest (not necessarily the majority vote) can be legislated and everyone is protected by the community’s will (Philosophy, et cetara). In the case of conflict, arising from diversity, Rousseau claims that the common interest is what benefits all members, so minority interests are protected from being exploited. Individual rights become collective rights. The general will can never take away individual rights because individual rights are not of practical use to the community or common good (Philosophy, et cetara).
Given this argument, relative to the issue under consideration, it is an individual right to become part of a couple and to raise a family. The general will can only be given an opportunity to overturn this right if two conditions are met. The first is that there is found sufficient and overwhelming evidence that there is danger or developmental threat to children from male homosexual parents. In this event, it can be said to be in the common good to protect the children of the community, who are all innocent and good (Doyle and Smith), from threat. The second condition, which must also be met, along with the first, is that the general will leads to legislation protecting all children of all parents from all threats of any kind. This condition is necessary to meet the requirement of equality under the law. As these conditions do not currently exist, then Rousseau would support the right of the male homosexual couple to adopt the child.
Benedict Spinoza builds on Neo-Platonic thought and Descarte’s definition of “substance” and advocates non-dualism, insisting everything is of one substance. The substance is God, the Absolute. Man is the natural unfolding of God’s nature. Man is identical, in a pantheistic sense, with God (rafed.net). Therefore the love of man for man is still, in essence, the love of God for God. Homosexuality cannot be immoral because God is not immoral. In the same way, if a male homosexual couple adopts a child and loves the child, and the child loves them as parents, this too is the unity of God’s love. Spinoza would defend their right to adopt, reminding the State of their duty to encourage the men to know God through the rational efforts of raising the child, an expression of God, whom they seek to know.
Thomas Aquinas classified, supported and justified the teachings and rules of the Catholic Church (Hillar, 22). He took, as absolutes, Church religious dogma and supported absolute obedience to its edicts. He would, therefore, have been opposed to a male homosexual couple adopting a child, as it is forbidden by the Catholic Church.
My own opinion, in this matter, is that if a male homosexual couple wants to adopt and parent a child, and they are reasonably certain they have a loving, stable relationship, and are prepared to love the child, then they should have the same rights as any heterosexual couple with a similar desire and intention. I agree with Rousseau that majority and minority must be treated equally and fairly, and that the majority has no right to impose power over the minority, where the common interest is not being threatened. I also like Benedict’s way of seeing everyone as being of one God substance, and that the love of man for man is the love of God for God.
Works Cited
Doyle, Michele Erina and Mark K. Smith. "Jean-Jacques Rousseau on Education." 2007. The Encyclopaedia of Informal Education. Web. 2 March 2012 .
Hillar, Marian. "The Justification of Morals in the Philosophy of Thomas Aquinas." Hillar, M. and H.R. Leuchtag. Ethics and Humanism. Houston: American Humanist Association, 1992. 21-40. Print.
Philosophy, et cetara. "Rousseau and the "General Will"." 20 March 2004. Philosophy, et cetara. Web. 2 March 2012 .
rafed.net. "Modern Philosophy - The Philosophy of Bendict Spinoza." 1 June 2010. Rafed.net. Web. 2 March 2012 . Read More
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