Paper: An Analysis of the Kantianism's Outlook on Nagel's Concept of Moral Luck

Awoman may decide to do volunteer work and visit cancer patients in the hospital. Upon Calling the local hospitals she is told that she must first have a physical examination by her doctor to ensure that she is not bring any germs or disease into the hospital. After being examined by her doctor she is told that she did not pass the physical examination and may not volunteer at the hospital. This woman is subject to moral luck. She fully intended on doing a good deed, but luck and outside circumstances intervened. Is she still to be judged as morally worthy? What about the people, who are not born with this predisposed nature to do such charitable acts? There are people who are born with a fear of hospitals, or fear of people, or just plain selfishness. These people should not be judged harshly for not going to volunteer at hospital. Moral luck has acted upon them, and prevented them from doing these wonderfully moral acts. A Kantian moral outlook appears to deny the relevance of moral luck because Kant judges actions on the will alone. Even if it should happen that, by a particular unfortunate fate.and even if the greatest effort should not avail it to achieve anythingas something that had its full worth in itself. Consequences of actions are not important to a Kantian. Only the actual intentions or will of the person is relevant. This does not take into account moral luck. If moral luck were to act on people Kant would judge this person by what his original intentions were. Utilitarianism or Consequentalism seem better suited to account for the importance of moral luck. Utilitarians determine what actions to take based on the greatest amount of pleasure that will come out of these actions. This takes into account what the consequences of actions will be and not the original intentions. However, this theory still does not take into account external forces, which cannot be predetermined....