A question about the trolley problem: an ethical problem or a matter of courage? Supposing I could flip a coin and thereby determine which track the trolley follows, killing either 1 or 5 people. You observe me flipping the coin, you have no influence on the coin, you have no influence on the trolley – the coin is in the air, which outcome do you hope for? I think most people would hope for the better outcome i.e. that there is only one death. If so, then isn’t this a matter of courage – we understand the random bad luck of the people at risk, we know the preferable outcome. We’re just unwilling to make the decision and take the required action, but we do know what is right. Where is the ethical problem?

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