Immanuel Kant and Ethical Dilemma

Good Essays
Ethics and the Legal Environment

Immanuel Kant and Ethical Dilemma

Immanuel Rant and Ethical Dilemmas Today
Today there are many ethical dilemmas going on in the world, from companies’ misuse of funding or executives’ misuse of their title. Ethical behavior has to be an important part in having a company that will survive in society.
There have been many philosophers that contributed to the ethical understanding we have today. On of the most influential philosophers in history of Western philosophy is Immanuel Kant. After his father’s death in 1755 Immanuel Kant continued his degree at the University of Königsberg and studied philosophy, mathematics, and the natural sciences.
Kant was a German philosopher that “believed that morality in all spheres of human life should be grounded in reason. His renowned "categorical imperative" held that: (1) people should act only according to maxims that they would be willing to see become universal norms (i.e., the Golden Rule); and (2) people should never treat another human as a means to an end.” (Dave Mote; Karl Heil) “Kant 's theory implied the necessity of trust, adherence to rules, and keeping promises” (Dave Mote; Karl Heil).
One of the major discussion points today in the news is Health Care Reform. The medical industry has had free reign for so long that an overhaul needs to be completed. Currently there are many points in the reform that are still not clear and causing confusion. Frustration will be caused between the individuals that will have to buy insurance, the companies that have to provide insurance and the insurance companies that have to provide pooling coverage. The policies may find be found to be difficult to uphold and people may feel that it may easier to take the penalty. According to Kant’s theory reform should be revamped again to that it will benefit all participants and not exclude any others.
In my opinion Kant’s theory has contributed to companies instituting polices



References: http://www.referenceforbusiness.com/encyclopedia/Bre-Cap/Business-Ethics.html. (Dave Mote; Karl Heil) http://www.thesunchronicle.com/articles/2010/10/11/columns/8075350.txt. (Anthony Tiatorio)

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Good Essays

    Kants Moral Thoery

    • 851 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Immanuel Kant is one of the most respected and studied philosopher of all time and is known for his basic yet in-depth moral theories and the belief that morality stems not from divine command or cultural conditioning but from reasoning and human freedom. His straight forward beliefs come from his very strict Lutheran upbringing which consisted of universal rights and universal wrongs with no exceptions(. He believed his moral laws to be universal and applied to every being including God, spirits and extraterrestrials. His ethics made him a leading figure in deontology which judges people on their actions, not the consequences of their actions, as morally significant. And actions are only as good as their intent to be morally permissible.…

    • 851 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Kantian ethics are ethical principles set out by Immanuel Kant (1724-1804), a German thinker from East Prussia, and arguably one of the most influential philosophers in Western philosophy. His ‘Categorical Imperative’ theory was devised from his desire to create a stand-alone ethical theory that would not rely on assumptions, hence he believed in an objective right or wrong based on reason as a pose to assumptions. According to Kant, morals are a Priori synthetic because they are absolute, existing in and of themselves, and do not need to be experienced for them to exist. However, upon testing, it is also obviously true that they are correct.…

    • 2219 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Better Essays

    Kant was born in 1724-1804, he was a German thinker from East Prussia (now Russia), and he spent his whole life in his hometown. Kant wanted to create a logical, stand-alone theory that wasn’t just based on assumptions, he believed in an objective right or wrong that is decided on reason and that we shouldn’t do the right thing just because it’s right and not to fulfil our desires. Can we lead a life following his ideals are there not some situations where a perfect moral decision cannot be made, are all our choices fuelled by personal gain and desire?…

    • 1567 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    What is a categorical imperative? A categorical imperative is a moral obligation which is absolute and necessary in any moral situation and isn’t reliant on a singular person’s desires or wills. For Kant, categorical imperatives are the foundation for morality because they invoke “pure” reasons for our moral actions and decisions since each rational being reasons to act outside of their own personal desires or will which may cloud judgments or impose a biased verdict of the situation. Kant explains this by distinguishing two different kinds of imperatives; categorical and hypothetical. Obviously Kant is interested in categorical imperatives and uses this distinction to show the difference between them so that categorical imperatives come out stronger. As stated before, categorical imperatives according to Kant are moral obligations which are absolute and necessary in any moral situation and isn’t reliant on a particular person’s desires or purpose. He also says that categorical imperatives (obligations) are such if they are of a commanding or imposing nature. For example “Don’t murder!” is a categorical imperative which is binding to every rational person and forces a person to act of good will. Hypothetical imperatives on the other hand are obligations in which there is an end result of your action which is in turn a result of your personal desires our thoughts. An example of a hypothetical imperative is the statement “If you want to stay out of jail, then don’t murder”. Here, there is no sense of authority behind it; it doesn’t have any weight or value behind it.…

    • 1801 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Kant's Formalism Theory

    • 724 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Kant is strictly a non-consequentialist philosopher, which means that he believes that a person's choices should have nothing to do with the desired outcome, but instead mankind simply goes about doing good because it is morally correct. Kant theorizes that moral reasoning is not based on factual knowledge and that reason by itself can reveal the basic principles of morality. Ideas contemplated and developed and theorized by Kant include the concepts of good will, the categorical imperative, universal acceptability, and humanity as an end rather than a means. These non-consequential concepts have made a remarkable impression on current ethical views.…

    • 724 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Ethics Kantian Ethics

    • 2105 Words
    • 5 Pages

    Immanuel Kant was a German philosopher who was concerned with producing an ethical theory that was logical and absolute, and did not change depending on the situation, countering the views of John Locke and other empiricists of the time. His ethics are based on duty, rather than looking at the end product of an action. He thought that his theory was so important that it could be rivalled with the Copernican revolution, in that it would utterly change everyone’s concept of morality in the same profound manner. There are two main dictionary definitions of duty, obeying a superior, and obeying the moral law in doing the right thing, and Kant was concerned with the latter.…

    • 2105 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Morality, Kant believes is founded on pure reason and his goals are to find a supreme principle of morality. He looks to find this supreme principle of morality by finding some criteria to sort maxims into two categories those who are morally okay and those who are not. Kant eventually finds the meaning of his supreme principle of morality, the rules include it is clearly synthetic, it is clearly a priori, and is therefore an example of pure reason. According to the book “maxims are rules that express the subjective intentions of the agent in doing an action.” (446) There are many things that are good in this world Kant says, and he uses intelligence, judgement, and other intellectual abilities as an example of our gifts of nature, he also uses money, power, and health as goods of fortune.…

    • 469 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    In the 18th century, German philosopher Immanuel Kant developed this theory of ethics. He was a prominent promoter of Moral Absolutism, and his formulation of the deontological theory of the Categorical Imperative was essentially absolutist in nature. Moral Absolutism has been favoured historically largely because it makes the creation of laws and…

    • 848 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Kant's Ethics

    • 879 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Kant’s ethics focuses on the metaphysics of morals, that is, beyond the physical. By this he determines the only way in which one can acknowledge them is to make assumptions. Since they are beyond the physical realm, they will not be seen or heard, therefore certain aspects need to be assumed. This theory is ground in comparison to his earlier work, the fundamental metaphysics of knowledge. He argues in that text, in order to have natural laws that apply to everything, beyond the physical, one must make certain assumptions. For this he proclaims that we must assume that there is such a thing as cause and effect. But he also points out, that we must always recognize that we could be wrong. His argument on the metaphysics of knowledge helps to frame his similar argument on the metaphysics of morals.…

    • 879 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Immanuel Kant saw the ethical law as an all-out basic, an indisputable order, and trusted that its substance could be set up by human reason alone. Subsequently, the incomparable all out basic is: "Act just one that is said so you can be lined up at the same time according to the universal law" (). Basically, it views that having good- will, definitely have a good principle behind it. Basically, people have free will to do, feel as they please rather it’s rational or not. Opposing to the utilitarian speculations of reflective quality, mankind has learned to be moral and find direction towards the goodness in life. Learning to lead an ethical life, regardless the reasons are, even if feelings inside is differing from our true feeling inside.…

    • 242 Words
    • 1 Page
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Kant exam questions

    • 437 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Immanuel Kant was an eighteenth century German philosopher whose moral views continue to be influential. He developed a deontological, absolute and objective ethical theory on the idea of moral law. Kant’s theory uses practical reason and looks at the argument before deciding what to do about the situation. It is described as being priori and synthetic (this meaning you don’t have to experience it to know what it means) and can be proven to be true or false without using experience. Kant believed in right and wrong based on reason, he relied on intuitions or facts. For freedom, Kant says you must be capable of exercising freedom or autonomy of will. For Kant’s Ethical Theory, only good will can be unconditional love. So for his theory, we humans must do our duty, which makes the will good. He says that duty is done for its own sake and not for any kind of benefit to our self. He says we know what is good by using reason. Kant says we have an obligation to do our duty; he calls this the categorical imperative.…

    • 437 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    First, we divulge in the exploration of Kant’s normative ethical theory. The basis of the Kantian ethical theory is that acts, and the intentions behind those acts, are what makes an outcome good over bad. Kantianism divides this theory into three ways to determine intentions behind acts; “universal law”, and the “formula of humanity”. These two imperatives being the most widely discussed here on out.…

    • 1520 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Better Essays

    A person’s actions impacts their peers, communities, and the world. Many people aspire to be “good” people, and hope to put good out into the world. One can define “good” in many different ways, but depending on an individual's ethical code, they may or may not be considered good. The three major ethical theories which we addressed are Kantian Ethics, Utilitarianism, and Virtue Ethics. A strong argument could be made for each theory, but one sticks out as the best and most reasonable theory of ethics. Kantian Ethics is the best universal theory of ethics, as it allows for individual rights and is specific enough to follow.…

    • 1576 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Immanuel Kant Morality

    • 490 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Over time philosophers have written countless books, theories, and essays as a way of changing the way people think and view life. Immanuel Kant, a philosopher around the seventeen and early eighteenth century, was no different in his thoughts and writings about morality, freedom, reason, and standpoints. Morality being one of the most contradictory concepts out there, it only suits that there are numerous theories.…

    • 490 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Immanuel Kant created a handful of formulations regarding his system of determining morality, the Categorical Imperative. James and Stuart Rachels in The Elements of Moral Philosophy, illuminate Kant's first and second Categorical Imperatives. While Kant claims the formulations are equivalent, they offer differing guidelines on how the Categorical Imperative is operated. Although the formulations share the same basis, the difference regarding how the formulations are adhered, is a large distinction difficult to ignore, and renders the two versions as separate subjects.…

    • 675 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays