Lying to Patients and Ethical Relativism
Ethical Relativism - theory that holds that morality is relative to the norms of one's culture. * a culture. i.e.: nobody should ever steal) Objective vs. Subjective (Telling right from wrong) Paternalism vs. Autonomy Paternalism – authority of restricting the freedom and responsibilities of those lower than them
Autonomy is a binomial 1) Enlightenment ethics – celebration of the individual’s reason, free will, self seat of values, 2) Politics – celebrating of the individual’s ability to know what is best for the government, religion, or public opinion.
Medical field turns from med paternalism to self-ruling autonomy Just because majority does something does not make it morally right. Ethical subjectivism – a person’s feelings towards a situation, nothing is really right or wrong (truths differ from person to person) A situation has to be rational in order to be justified. Impartiality and Moral Reasoning * Contrasting Ideas * Subjectivism is weaker than a justified reason. Good reasons for a position Appealing to feelings with observance Impartial reasoning = objective reasoning Certain roles should be objective Kant on Lying It is never right to lie to a person. Kant worked to make universal laws of ethics Kant’s theories To think + to reflect = to reason Morality is universal Morality is absolute and unchanging Act accordingly only to what the law states is right. Kantian ethics: the requirement of universalizability Wrote moralities as being “imperatives” or commands that must be followed Universalizability – to make an unjustified exception, influencing others to do the same. Hypothetical imperative - moral command that is conditional on personal motive or desire. (want) Categorical imperative - An unconditional moral obligation. (must) Rationality and morality go hand-in-hand