Comparing Ethical Theories

Topics: Ethics, Virtue ethics, Deontological ethics Pages: 2 (507 words) Published: February 27, 2012
Comparing Ethical Theories
January 1, 2012

Comparing Ethical Theories
Ethics is a philosophy that studies morality. Principles of doing right and wrong are inspired by ethical theories such as virtue ethics, utilitarianism, and deontology. Virtue Ethics
Virtue is synonymous with quality. Virtue ethics, known as character ethics, is a theory based upon the qualities of goodness and quality. A person who subscribes to virtual ethics believes they should live their life should be cultivated in excellence no matter the task. Good is subjective to each person as well as excellence. Good is also based on norms. (Boylan, p. 136). Excellence according to Aristotle is a balance of the alternatives (Boylan, 2009). Utilitarianism Ethics

Utilitarianism theory suggests a person is in control of evaluating potential outcomes as a result of an action. The action is justified if the “ends justify the means” resulting in “the greatest good for the greatest number”. Unlike virtue ethics which is character driven, utilitarianism is action-based that is similar to deontology; the difference between utilitarianism and deontology rests within the motive of an action (Boylan, 2009). Deontological Ethics

The emphasis of deontology relies upon the duty to do perform an action merely because the action is the appropriate thing to do. Virtual ethics also relies upon the self-realization of doing what is right, but determines the wrong action is born out of ignorance and people are inherently good. Deontology, on the other hand, requires the decision to be based on what is rationale for the situation (Boylan, 2009). Personal Experience

Money found on the sidewalk to some people is abandoned money or a blessing in disguise. The person who lost money on the sidewalk may not realize the money is gone until the money is needed for deposit or investment. According to an article in the Gainsville Sun, the most current generation of young people, Generation Y, the least...

References: Boylan, M. (2009). Basic Ethics (2nd ed.). Retrieved from The University of Phoenix
eBook Collection.
(2008, December 1). Are young people less honest today?. Gainsville Sun. Retrieved
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