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..are the subject of today’s ruminations over at the Register.
King David was certainly guilty of adultery and abuse of power,
but was he legally guilty of murder?
David did something he was authorised to do (ie, order the
deployment of troops in battle as Israel’s commander in chief) that was likely
and expected to (and in this case, did – but would not inevitably) bring about
a result he was not allowed to bring about directly by his own hand, ie the
death of Uriah.
This seems quite compatible with the Catholic version of
Double Effect, eg, “using artificial contraception is wrong (a) because it
is intrinsically wicked to want to enjoy recreational sex without pregnancy,
and (b) also because NFP and other forms of strategically-timed selective
celibacy are just as effective in enabling you to enjoy recreational sex
without pregnancy.” The morally relevant factors in that view are whether
you achieve your goal indirectly rather than directly.
Mind you, if the Catholic version of Double Effect that’s
used to justify NFP-Onlyism were applied consistently, euthanasia – sorry,
“life-sacrificing by a willing victim” or some other process that is
as utterly different from euthanasia as an annulment rota is from a divorce
court – would be legitimate provided you did it by putting food and water
beside the patient’s bed while they were asleep and then taking it away before
they wake up.