Originally posted by PhoeniXof_Hades
Some more foods for thoughts: What matters, the intention, the action, or the outcome of the action a person does/commits? When a person kills another person in cold-blood, and we take the killer as a criminal, do we look at the intention he had in his mind while killing, or the action he committed, or the impact of the action in the world - when labeling him as a criminal? Take the case of a police, a freedom fighter, and terrorist - for all the three, we take into account their intention (and to some extent, the outcome/impact of their action), when labeling them as Saint or Devil, yet how do we draw the line into a noble intention, and a wicked one? For all we know, for a terrorist, his intention is 'noble' - but so is the intention of a freedom fighter; do then, ones intention have to be universally noble, and if one objective truth exists, and furthermore, if morality is objective to begin with. How about utilitarianism - where the moral worth of an action is determined by its outcome. There is a whole lot of discussion that can stem from the concept, utilization and criticisms of utilitarianism morality.
Well, not really related with the topic at hand, but can come in handy, when answering the questions you raised. I was actually thinking of post a topic on the nature of crime and justice for the longest time I can remember, but then I saw this, and posted it here.
You're too smart for me, POH ji. But I can answer your question about which is more important: the intention, the action or the outcome. I believe the action is more important because the outcome depends on what you have done. Beside, if we're talking about crimes, then the action is very essential becuase the accused will be sentenced based on the severity of the crime. Also, many lives can change based on the crime committed, especially of the criminal and the people around him and the victim and the people around him. I'm still learning so can't produce a wittier response. Forgive me if I'm wrong or my reasoning is flawed.