Week 1 Individual Assignment
December 10, 2012
There are three main approaches to ethical theory. The three areas are utilitarianism, deontology, and virtue ethics. Utilitarianism is often thought of as the consequences. In a utilitarian’s mind, the best choice is the one that is made to meet most people’s satisfaction and is ethically correct. The problem with utilitarianism is that as time passes and they begin to have wrong predictions, then the benefit is less for everyone and that person begins to look unethical. Also, there is the possibility for laws to conflict with a utilitarian’s way of thinking, at times they will infringe upon one person’s rights in order to benefit the greater population. Deontological theory states that people should follow their own obligations first and foremost ahead of other individuals or society. In this person’s thinking, they believe that following through with their own obligations is ethically correct. A deontologist has the thinking that they must follow the rules set, no matter the consequences. The biggest fault with a deontologist is that there is no logical basis for setting these rules. Since deontology is not based on specifics of different situations, there is no true guidance when there are conflicting obligations in any situation. Lastly, virtue ethical theory focuses mostly on the character of the person instead of the action that the person is committing. This theory takes into account a person’s morals, reputation and motivation for the act. The biggest fault with this sort of ethical theory is that a person’s change in morals is not considered. Virtue ethics is the ethical theory that best describes my views. The biggest different between myself and a straight edge ethical theorist would be that I judge a person for every situation, while always assuming that their morals are still intact. In this case, values help to describe what is important to a person’s life. Virtue ethics...
References: Rainbow, C. (2002). Principles and Theories. Retrieved 12 09, 2012, from Davidson College: http://www.bio.davidson.edu/people/kabernd/Indep/carainbow/Theories.htm
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