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Philosophy: John Rawls defends utilitarianism against a common criticism regarding punishment and breaking promises - Essay Example

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Philosophy: John Rawls defends utilitarianism against a common criticism regarding punishment and breaking promises

For example, the parent can violate the policy “keep off the grass” if the parent steps on the grass to retrieve one’s one year old child. The parent is excused from complying with the “keep off the grass” policy because the circumstances require the automatic violation of the law. Rawls defines practice as the constant changing of currently established policy, law, statute or standard to fit a situation, for example punishment. The various types of punishment for crimes are constantly changed to be in tune with the changing environment. For example, the death sentence was abolished in many countries. Rawls emphasized that the current punishment practice can be challenged if the change will be more beneficial to society as a whole. In the “keep of the grass” situation (practice), Utilitarianism allows the person to violate the established practice. Rawls shows that the end justifies the means. In a game of chess, the mother violates the rules of chess in order to teach the child how to play the games. The mother’s action violates chess rules if the mother intentionally lets the child win. By violating the rules of chess, the mother is no longer playing chess.
To reiterate, the root word of utilitarianism, utilism, states that a person must act morally in any given situation. Utilitarian moral ethics states that the best action or avoidance of action is determined by the usefulness of the implementation of an action or inaction. In short, the morally right act or avoidance of an act is grounded based on the outcome of the action or avoidance of action. Rawls emphasized (99) in the game of baseball, games have rules and well defined structures for changing the rules. The rules define the practice. Rules can be changed at some point in time. While the practice is in progress, changing the practice by changing the rules is prohibited. Similarly, rules on ...Show more


The research focuses on the effect of non-utilitarian reasons on the Utilitarianism. The research focuses on the discussion of utilitarian theory…
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Philosophy: John Rawls defends utilitarianism against a common criticism regarding punishment and breaking promises essay example
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