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Happiness and Morality Being Moral and Appearing to be Moral Christine Vitrano provides a clear differentiation between being moral and appearing to be moral. In the book “Happiness and Morality,” Vitrano argues that one can appear to be virtuous by not being virtuous (qtd.
Based on the points raised by virtue ethics, a person is being moral when he is performing moral acts. Therefore, the requisite for cultivating a reputation as being virtuous is through performing acts that are moral or virtuous which makes the person becomes moral or virtuous. This is the heart of her argument regarding the supposed autonomy of happiness and morality with each other. Aristotle postulates “being moral will make you happy” (qtd. in Vitrano 4), which Vitrano argues saying that the morality and intellectual character of a person do not automatically lead to happiness (3). In her words, Vitrano states “we do find happy immoralists, people who knowingly break the rules of society and appear unaffected by it” (3). Vitrano makes a plausible explanation for her conclusion that a person who appears to be moral needs first to perform virtuous acts or by being virtuous. One cannot establish his or her image as a virtuous person without doing acts that have intrinsic moral values in it. I agree with Vitrano that an appearance of a virtuous individual entails the actual doing of things which are deemed virtuous. For instance, a president is not seen as a virtuous person without acting like one, such as abolishing the death penalty because it is pro-life. ...
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