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Philopsphy

This paper applies these two theories of ethics on particular concrete cases. The cases are, keeping/breaking a promise, abortion, and Euthanasia. As sources of information, two books are used: Practical Ethics, by Peter Singer, and Ground Work of the Metaphysics of Morals, by Emmanuel Kant. Before applying the two ethical theories to the above cases, it is important to first give an overview of each of the theories. To begin with, the utilitarian theory of ethics is an end based theory. In other words, in determining the morality of an action, the proponents of utilitarian theory will focus on the end result of the action, and if the end product of the action will result in greater good to the majority of people, i.e. if the action will maximize happiness for the majority, then the action is a morally right action (Singer, 3). On the contrary, if the action diminishes happiness, or makes the majority of people to suffer, then the action is morally wrong. Deontological theory of Ethics on the other hand is based on the law or the duty ( Kant, 13-15). This means that an action is regarded as being morally right if it is done in accordance with the requirements of the law, or in fulfilment of one’s obligation. ...
tological theory of Ethics, the main question that we should ask ourselves is whether or not the act of breaking or keeping the promise is in line with our obligations or the law. Emmanuel Kant, one of the main proponents of deontological theory of Ethics argues, in his famous categorical imperative, that before taking an action, we should ask ourselves whether we would wish our manner of acting to be made into a universal law applicable to all similar cases (Kant, 18). Kant, therefore, is of the view that we have the obligation to treat others as we would like to be treated. In this sense, breaking a promise that we have made is morally wrong because we would also not like somebody who has promised us something to fail to keep their promise. We should always keep our promises since we have an obligation to fulfil what we have promised to do. A utilitarian on the other hand would base their judgement on the consequence or the end result of either breaking or keeping ones promise. If the action will maximize the interests of the majority, then the action is morally right, and on the contrary, if the action will result in diminishing happiness to the majority of people, then the act is morally wrong. On this basis, a utilitarian wouldn’t give a definitive answer on whether the act of keeping or breaking a promise is intrinsically wrong or right. A utilitarian will conclude that the morality of the action of either keeping or breaking a promise will greatly depend on the particular circumstance at hand. If the circumstance is such that keeping or breaking a promise will lead to greater happiness for the majority, then the action is morally right and if the action will lead to suffering of the majority of people, then the action is morally wrong. Abortion The main ...Show more

Summary

Henry Nabea Professor # Philosophy # 3 May, 2013 Ethical Issues In Ethics, there are a number of ethical theories that forms the basis of making ethical decisions. The theory of ethics that one subscribes to determines the kind of ethical decisions they will make in a given ethical dilemma…
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