Critiquing Philosophical Approaches to Ethical Decision-Making

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Critiquing Philosophical Approaches to Ethical Decision-Making Mary Grein
March 14, 2010
Dana Catlin

Critiquing Philosophical Approaches to Ethical Decision-Making At times one has to make decisions with no guidance from others or any rules in which to guide them. Sometimes one allows our “gut feelings” or hearts help to make a decision. Other times ones conscience or moral standings will help with the decision. Using the Ethical Decision- Making Framework (EDM) is a philosophical approach to help make the correct decision. The three philosophical approaches are: consequentalism, deontology, and virtue ethics. This paper is a critique of each type of approach from the previous three scenarios from week four. 1. Scenario one: The mayor of a small seaside town has to decide if building a mall estimated to bring in $150 million in tourism each year is worth destroying the only nursing home and senior citizens recreation center in the town. The home consists of 100 seniors and 30 employees. A. Using the consequentalism approach, asks what the consequences would be. In this case, building the mall would benefit the entire community. Keeping the nursing home and recreation center would only benefit the 130 people involved with it. The number of people benefiting from the mall outweighs the people at the nursing home. B. Using the deontology approach asks what are the duties and obligations involved. Since the mayor of the town is making the decision, his obligation and duty is to do what is best for his community. Either choice would fall into this approach. Building the mall would help the town economically, or keeping the nursing home would benefit the residence and employees. C. Using the virtue ethics approach asks what is morally right or wrong. This approach would be the worse approach. Sometimes morals do not always make the correct decision. Putting oneself as a villain, kicking senior citizens out of their home, is moral thinking, not...
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