•  9
    Freedom, Firearms, and Civil Resistance
    The Journal of Ethics 1-20. forthcoming.
    The claim that guns can safeguard freedom is common in US political discourse. In light of a broadly republican understanding of freedom, I evaluate this claim and its implications. The idea is usually that firearms would enable citizens to engage in revolutionary violence against a tyrannical government. I argue that some of the most common objections to this argument fail, but that the argument is fairly weak in light of other objections. I then defend a different argument for the claim that g…Read more
  •  16
    Nick Bostrom has famously defended the credibility of the simulation hypothesis – the hypothesis that we live in a computer simulation. Barry Dainton has recently employed the simulation hypothesis to defend the ‘simulation solution’ to the problem of natural evil. The simulation solution claims that apparently natural evils are in fact the result of wrong actions on the part of the people who create our simulation. In this way, it treats apparently natural evils as actually being moral evils, a…Read more
  •  27
    Gun Control, the Right to Self-Defense, and Reasonable Beneficence to All
    Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 6. 2019.
  • This book is devoted to applied ethics. We focus on six popular and controversial topics: abortion, the environment, animals, poverty, punishment, and disability. We cover three chapters per topic, and each chapter is devoted to a famous or influential argument on the topic. After we present an influential argument, we then consider objections to the argument, and replies to the objections. The book is impartial, and set up in order to equip the reader to make up her own mind about the controver…Read more
  •  26
    Expression and Indication in Ethics and Political Philosophy
    Res Publica 25 (3): 387-406. 2019.
    We sometimes have reasons to perform actions due to what they would communicate. Those who have discussed such reasons have understood what an action ‘communicates’ as what it conventionally expresses. Brennan and Jaworski argue that when a convention ensures that expressing the appropriate thing would be costly, we should change or flout the convention. I argue that what really matters is often what attitudes we indicate rather than conventionally express, using social science to show that indi…Read more
  •  69
    The problem of evil and the suffering of creeping things
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 82 (1): 71-88. 2017.
    Even philosophers of religion working on the problem of non-human animal suffering have ignored the suffering of creatures like insects. Sensible as this seems, it’s mistaken. I am not sure whether creatures like these can suffer, but it is plausible, on both commonsensical and scientific and philosophical grounds, that many of them can. If they do, their suffering makes the problem of evil much worse: their vast numbers mean the amount of evil in the world will almost certainly be increased by …Read more
  •  12
    Perry Hendricks’ original ‘impairment argument’ against abortion relied on ‘the impairment principle’ : ‘if it is immoral to impair an organism O to the nth degree, then, ceteris paribus, it is immoral to impair O to the n+1 degree.’ Since death is a bigger impairment than fetal alcohol syndrome, Hendricks reasons that, by TIP, if causing FAS is immoral, then, ceteris paribus, abortion is immoral. Several authors have argued that this conclusion is uninteresting, since the ceteris paribus clause…Read more
  •  59
    The ‘impairment argument’ against abortion developed by Perry Hendricks aims to derive the wrongness of abortion from the wrongness of causing foetal alcohol syndrome. Hendricks endorses an ‘impairment principle’, which states that, if it is wrong to inflict an impairment of a certain degree on an organism, then, ceteris paribus, it is also wrong to inflict a more severe impairment on that organism. Causing FAS is wrong in virtue of the impairment it inflicts. But abortion inflicts an even more …Read more
  •  35
    Moral Indulgences: When Offsetting is Wrong
    with Rebecca Chan
    Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion 9 68-95. 2019.
  •  56
    We Are Here to Help Each Other
    Faith and Philosophy 32 (1): 45-62. 2015.
    Richard Swinburne and Travis Dumsday have defended what J. L. Schellenberg calls “the responsibility argument” as a response to the problem of divine hiddenness. Schellenberg, meanwhile, has levied various objections against the responsibility argument. In this paper, I develop a version of the responsibility argument and discuss some advantages it has over those defended by either Swinburne or Dumsday. I then show how my version can withstand Schellenberg’s criticisms.
  •  9
    Prosecutorial Discretion and Republican Non-Domination
    Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 23 (5): 965-985. 2020.
    Prosecutors in the US legal system have great power to interfere at their discretion in the lives of citizens, and face relatively few checks on the exercise of this discretion. The vast scope of the criminal law provides a pretext for prosecuting nearly anyone. Meanwhile, other features of the legal system, such as the way plea bargains are structured and the doctrine of prosecutorial immunity, further increase prosecutorial power. And existing institutional restraints on prosecutorial abuses, …Read more