Penrose on Politics by Brett Penrose We find examples of morals and ethics in public life
In the daily news: City Council Members Indicted IN Real Estate Scam Mountain View, Monday Three members of the city council accused last year o buying city property at reduced cost TEENS ARRESTED AFTER FOOD FIGHT Los Altos, yesterday Dozens of students were arrested at Los Altos High School early Wednesday after engaging in a high- spirited hurling of mashed potatoes in the school cafeteria.
Morality generally defines personal character and is based on deep values Ethics is generally defined as the social system in which morals are applied. In other words, codes of behavior expected by the group or institution. Morality and Ethics--is there a difference? The two can collide: * Court of Law * Medicine * Work situation * Other examples?
Everyday moral/ethical questions: Is it always right to tell the truth? Do I have an obligation to help people in need? How can I tell what the right thing is? How do other peoples moral/ethical decisions affect mine? What does it really matter if I do right? What do I gain from behaving morally or ethically? What do I sacrifice from behaving morally or ethically?
Lawrence Kohlbergs Stages of Moral Development Stage One: Respect for power and punishment-- I will do what I want as long as I dont get in trouble Stage Two: Looking out for #1-- I will do what benefits me; Ill give if I get Stage Three: Good Boy Nice Girl-- I please others to gain their approval Stage Four: Law and Order-- I conform; I do my duty to maintain social order; people who break rules should be punished Stage Five: Justice through Democracy-- I actively work to change laws that are unfair; I work within the system Stage Six: Guiding Moral Principles-- I do what I know is right even if the law says otherwise; I am always true to my values
Ethical Relativism: No principles are universally valid. All moral principles are valid relative to culture. The rules of the society serve as a standard. Information for next five slides from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation Strength--Tolerance/Understanding of other cultures Weakness--Confuses what ought to be done with what is currently done
Divine Command Theory: Moral standards depend on God who is all- knowing. Any act that conforms to the law of God is right; an act that breaks Gods law is wrong. Strengths--Standards are from a higher authority than humans. Gives a reason for moral behavior. Weakness--Depends on interpretation of Gods will.
Utilitarianism: Actions are judged right or wrong solely by their consequences. Right actions are those that produce the greatest balance of happiness over unhappiness. Each persons happiness is equally important. Strength--promotes human well-being and attempts to lessen human suffering. Weakness--One persons good can be anothers evil. Hard to predict accurately all consequences.
Deontology: Emphasis is on moral rules and duty. Rules go for everyone in the society. Emphasis on autonomy, justice and kind acts. People are treated as ends, never means. Strength--Moral rules are universal Weaknesses--Says nothing about the rights of other living things. Rules can be abstract-- who decides what is moral?
Virtue Ethics: Morals are internal. It seeks to produce good people who act well out of spontaneous goodness. Emphasizes living well and achieving excellence. Strength--Internalizes moral behavior Weakness--Offers no guidance for resolving ethical dilemmas
So begins our exploration of morality and ethics!