Are Atomic Bombs Ethical?

Updated on June 12, 2018

What Are Atomic Bombs and How Do They Work?

Well, what exactly are atomic bombs and how do they work? Atomic bombs, often referred to as nuclear bombs or nukes, are bombs that utilize the energy created from nuclear reactions in an atomic scale. This energy can be used in warfare, as energy, or as telecommunication amplifiers. In this article, I will be focusing more on warfare aspect of atomic bombs, and whether they should be used in war. Atomic bombs saw their first use during World War II, when the Japanese territory was left alone In the opposing alliance. The bombs dropped, nicknames; Little boy and Fat man, had enough energy behind it to create a resonant amount of radioactivity to still be present in the Japanese area even to this day. Prior to its use during the war, the atomic bomb was first recommended to Franklin Roosevelt, and was confirmed by Albert Einstein before being created and researched by Enrico Fermi.

There are two types of ways to create an atomic bomb, Fission and Fusion. On one side, Fusion creates 100 times as much energy as Fission, and is therefore the go-to for any project that could relate to Nuclear reactions. However, it’s more costly and very inefficient as it doesn't make use of all of the mass in order to form energy. Fusion, is when one uses the energy caused by the act of two atoms fusing to create nuclear reactions. It is commonly used with Hydrogen-1 atoms in order to form Helium-2 atoms. On the other side, Fission is when one bombarded a particularly heavy atom with neutron radiation. The isotope if the particular atom can not sustain the extra mass and therefore splits. When it splits, it produced more neutron radiation which then in turn split two more atoms, and the cycle continues and forms an intense body if energy.

"The atomic bomb made the prospect of future war unendurable. It has led us up those last few steps to the mountain pass; and beyond there is a different country."

- J. Robert Oppenheimer

Are Atomic Bombs Ethical?

Is it really ethical to use atomic bombs in warfare? Well, that depends on the circumstances. During a war, there will always be a breaking point in which one side takes a considerable advantage within the war. Whether it be an abundance in resources or an upgrade to it military, an atomic bomb will always be a great solution in order to even out the odds. However, when it comes to a natural sense of moral, we can compare it to natural selection. In natural selection, organisms compete with each other through a battle dictated by natural advantages. If one presumed a human as the role of the organism, and a nuke as it's advantage, nature would dictate that the atomic bomb is ethical, because it had a potential to be created by either competing organism (or human). Therefore, the organism (or human) that had a trait considerably beneficial enough that it would allow for the cognitive ability to perceive the complexity of an atomic bomb.

However, in a treaty signed by the United Nations that put certain restrictions on war, both chemical and biological weapons were banned. The atomic bomb (a prime example of chemical warfare) has since been dormant within the private safety of the United Nation’s territory, but have been regarded as the most dangerous bombs ever made. People generally argue that the atomic bomb is unethical due to its intense overkill when It comes to war. These bombs have enough energy to spew sediment into the atmosphere and block out the sun for decades. This would eventually cause widespread famine, and eventually extinction. The impact created from one of these bombs is enough to take out two countries, alone. The effects added together is enough to wipe out an entire species. This is often regarded as “against nature's will”, however when it comes to human safety, I personally will go to great lengths in order to uphold peace, justice and welfare.

© 2018 Devin Xu

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