The ethics of cultural heritage
The ethics of cultural heritage

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The ethics of cultural heritage

2.2 The ‘It’s my money’ response (part 2)

The points made in Section 2.1 support people’s right to spend their money on the restoration of Notre-Dame if they choose. Yet the core premises of both the cost-effectiveness and the humanitarian arguments could still be true. What the arguments in Section 2.1 claim is that even if Notre-Dame’s restoration is not a cost-effective use of money, and even if a human life is worth more than preserving a historic building, people might still be entitled to donate their money to Notre-Dame.

The central claim and its supporting points assert people’s right to donate to non-ideal charitable causes (Figure 12). Some of these assertions are somewhat controversial in philosophy. However, if successful, these moves may provide a moral defence for the choice to donate to Notre-Dame instead of helping human beings.

This is a flow diagram with three blocks on the left-hand side stacked one above each other. The top box is titled: It’s my money. The middle box: Relationships. Bottom box: Over-demandingness. Each has an arrow which points to a box which reads: It is morally permissible to donate to Notre-Dame, even if that isn’t morally ideal.
Figure 12 The ‘It’s my money’ response to making private donations to Notre-Dame’s restoration

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