Many people, including myself, shed a tear yesterday (and now again!) after the news came through that a here famous crime reporter died. Peter R. de Vries was (is!) a beloved man who helped people genuinely. He tried to reopen cold cases and helped people wrongly convicted. Two innocent men would still be in jail if he weren't there. There is a sea of flowers on the place were he got shot. He was a nice man not afraid for the confrontation and said in my eyes wise things. About politics, about peiple, in general. He had a natural sense of humor.

Still I can't stop wondering. The murder was bad. But seen from the killer's perspective, or the one(s) ordering it, was it a good deed? Peter was known to be disliked in criminal circles. Maybe prison no longer awaits for them (although the actual killer got caught soon after, the same day he got shot last week).

  • "seen from the killer's perspective"... Maybe we have to make a difference between good and useful (for someone). Jul 16 at 7:49
  • Criminals know the difference between good and bad (most of the times at least) they just don't care. It's al about that is profitable tot hem.
    – A.bakker
    Jul 16 at 8:06
  • 2
    Sure, why not. Genocide is good too, from Nazi perspective.
    – Conifold
    Jul 16 at 8:09
  • 1
    Without knowing the particular criminal's psychology, how can we answer? And if we could answer, how could we safely infer from the particular to the general psychology of criminals, even that of the sub-class of asssassins?
    – Geoffrey Thomas
    Jul 16 at 8:11
  • @GeoffreyThomas If a criminal doesnt get convicted because of the murder then for him the murder is good. Though he can feel bad about it of courseü
    – user53288
    Jul 16 at 8:15

If somebody decides to do something then it is because they are motivated to do so, and the motivation, which could be anything - hunger, curiosity, greed, boredom - outweighs the motivation for not carrying out that action. Whether the subject would consider that to equate to ‘good’ is another matter; I suggest that ‘less bad’ might in many cases be a better description, in which case the answer to your question is no.

  • I'd say there is a confusion introduced by using good and bad in moral terms as moral theory, when moral theory needs to be defined first to know what good and bad is in that context: 'Ethics: a simple definition using simple words' philosophy.stackexchange.com/questions/83088/…
    – CriglCragl
    Aug 16 at 16:48

Don't say "it is good, from his perspective." It makes it sound like the goodness or badness of the act depends on who you're asking. Murder is wrong, and if a murderer thinks murder is right, the murderer is wrong. We all have different subjective opinions, but they are not all equally right.

If Dave believes the Earth is flat, you should not say, "from Dave's perspective, the Earth is flat" (or even worse, "For Dave, the Earth is flat"); you should say, "Dave believes the Earth is flat."

In regard to morality, you should not assert a moral proposition unless you believe it yourself. If you don't believe the murder is actually good - then to say it is good (even "from a certain perspective") would be dishonest.

  • Murder in the case of war defending your community may be considered morally good. Blanket rules don't work.
    – CriglCragl
    Aug 16 at 16:50
  • @CriglCragl wartime killings and self-defense killings are not considered murder.
    – causative
    Aug 16 at 16:57
  • @causative Yes, not by those having justification to kill
    – tejasvi88
    Aug 17 at 8:07

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