A Film Comparison: Aristotle and Schindler's List

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The Judgment of Oskar Schindler

Judge: "Members of the jury, we are present today to decide the level of virtue possessed by Oskar Schindler during World War II. It will be up to you to take in the facts presented by both the State and the defense and make an informed and unbiased decision. Please take extra care not to allow the influences of other philosophers, such as Hobbes, Mill, and Kant, interfere with your decision as only Aristotle's views shall be tolerated. We would like to thank you for your time and will begin the process by hearing an opening statement made by the defense."

Ladies and gentleman, I would like to begin by thanking you for your presence and willingness to listen and learn as I present some background information on the esteemed and virtuous Oskar Schindler. I can personally assure you that he is nothing but virtuous, but don't take my word for it as there is no need. I will present you with an abundance of support based on the views of none other than Aristotle himself. The idea of function and virtue are two of the staples that hold together his very idea of ethics. It can be said that the other soldiers during the war succumb to many personal vices along the way. For example, take a look at Amon Goeth, a complete mess under such theories as the Doctrine of the Mean. As evidence by the early morning human hunting games he would play simply to amuse himself, Amon was certainly not good tempered and had an excess of anger. Temperance is another virtue clearly skewed by Amon. Considering all the wild parties, drunken nights, and need to keep Helen close by to feed his appetite for pleasure, it can certainly be said once again that an excess was present. The refusal to let Schindler's Jews go at a low price and his unwillingness to truly admit his feelings of affection for Helen show a defect of liberality and courage respectively. Overall, though his initial impression gives off a sense of power it is plain to see that he is...
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