Principles of Responsible Commerce (COMM 101)
Case 2.3 (The Ford Pinto)
1. What moral issues does the Pinto case raise?
Moral issues that Ford Pinto case raises included producing dangerous products which are not safe to use it without informing the dangerous of the products to the public. In addition, lobbying the NHTSA to delay the safety measure of the products is also one of the moral issues that Ford Pinto case raises.
2. Suppose Ford officials were asked to justify their decision. What moral principles do you think they would invoke? Assess Ford’s handling of the Pinto from the perspective of each of the moral theories discussed in this chapter.
The theory of egoism is most suitable to describe the Ford Pinto case. Ford is doing things that benefit the organization itself. In addition, Ford only considered the short term benefits and neglected the long term interests of the organization itself. The handling of the Pinto from the perspective of each of the moral theories is as following. Act utilitarianism says that Ford did not produce the greatest possible balance of cost-benefit calculation for everyone affected. According to the Kant’s categorical imperatives, Ford should not place a monetary value on a human life. Based on W.D.Ross’s 7 basic Prima Facie Duties, Ford failed to apply the duties of nonmalefience because they did not produce safe cars. Lastly, Ford is unethical when applying the ethic of caring. Ford not only produced dangerous products, they also hide the truth of the defective Pinto from the customers.
3. Utilitarians would say that jeopardising motorists does not by itself make Ford’s action morally objectionable. The only morally relevant matter is whether Ford gave equal consideration to the interests of each affected party. Do you think Ford did this?
No, because Ford has not produce the greatest possible balance of good over...
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