Today I am going to present you with two scenarios frequently used in research examining moral judgments. Here we go….
1) You are standing at the side of a train track. You see a train approaching and, to your horror, realise that it is going to hit and kill five people standing on the track. However, you then realise that you can pull a lever and send the train onto another track, where it will only kill one person. Do you pull the lever?
2) There you are, standing on a bridge over a railway track. You see a train approaching and, to your horror, realise that it is going to hit and kill five people standing on the track. However, you then realise that there is a well-built man on the bridge, and if you push him off he will stop the train and prevent the deaths, but will be killed in the process. Do you push the man off the bridge?
I will give the necessary credits for the scenarios, and talk more about the answers, next week. However, for now……how would you act in each instance?
Update: To make it even more interesting, I have added two polls so that we can look at whether religious people make different decisions to atheists!