July 9, 2013
Ethics Essay Ethics are standards that differentiate right and wrong and how people should conduct themselves. Ethics refer to standards that would prevent someone from doing something wrong, like murder for example. Is it ethical to commit murder? Society has deemed murder as an unacceptable. In the same way ethics help to determine what are appropriate behavior at home, school, and the work place. How we interact with others can be considered ethical, treating others with respect, hospitality, sharing, and helping others in need would be considered good ethical behavior. Ethical standards also include virtues of honesty, compassion, and loyalty.
The Virtue Theory
The virtue theory deals with the individual, the expectation is to “cultivate excellence in all that you do and all that others do (Boylan, 2009).” It deals with the character of an individual. Qualities of a virtuous person would be considered an upstanding, trustworthy, dependable, and honest. In contrast an unethical person would be selfish, unreliable, devious, or careless. People are characterized as “good” or “bad” or a combination of both, it does not leave room for a good person to make a bad choice. Once a person commits an unacceptable act, he or she may be branded as a bad person even if they have high morals and ethics instead of a good person who made a bad decision. An example of this would be of a person who drinks and drives. This is bad choice and the consequences of this choice can lead to accidents and death, but does this mean that this is a bad person? More than likely there would be no negative consequence unless the person is caught or there is an accident causing physical or property damage.
The Utilitarianism Theory
Utilitarianism is an ethical theory that places right and wrong on the consequence of the action that will be for “the greatest good for the greatest number” (Boylan, p.133, 2009). The
References: Boylan, M. (2009). Basic Ethics (2nd ed.). Retrieved from The University of Phoenix e Book Collection database. Caiaphas – High Priest of the Jerusalem Temple. (). Retrieved from http://christianity.about.com/od/newtestamentpeople/a/Caiaphas.htm Deontology Ethics. (2008). Retrieved from http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Deontological_ethics