Utilitas

Research Article

Probabilities in Tragic Choices

EDUARDO RIVERA-LÓPEZa1

a1 Universidad Torcuato Di Tella (Buenos Aires) erivera@utdt.edu

Abstract

In this article I explore a kind of tragic choice that has not received due attention, one in which you have to save only one of two persons but the probability of saving is not equal (and all other things are equal). Different proposals are assessed, taking as models proposals for a much more discussed tragic choice situation: saving different numbers of persons. I hold that cases in which (only) numbers are different are structurally similar to cases in which (only) probabilities are different. After a brief defense of this claim, I conclude that some version of consequentialism seems more promising for offering a plausible solution to the probability case.