So many people have said to me, “Ethics? That’s stuff that old philosophers like Aristotle and Plato talked about, but it really doesn’t have anything to do with me and my life today.” And when I hear that, I always respond, “Yes, human beings have been thinking and talking about Ethics for thousands of years, and the reason they think and talk about Ethics is that their world is impacted by ethical issues almost every single day! Any time you are faced with a decision about ‘What is the right thing to do?’, you are engaging in ethical decision making!”
This first chapter does a good job of leading us into our study of Ethics, and it sets the stage for us by asking us to think critically about why we see things as “right” or “wrong”. As we go through our readings, we will get involved with major ethical theories: Virtue Ethics, Utilitarianism or Consequentialist Ethics, and Deontological Ethics. I’m excited to see what ideas and perspectives each of you will share as we discuss the various aspects of those theories over the next several weeks!!
This piece on Confucius is interesting because it presents the ideas of a man who lived thousands of years ago, but whose views of the world still have tremendous application and implication for us in this contemporary age. I’m interested in hearing your thoughts about this particular learning activity!
Death at Massey Energy Company
Watch “Death at Massey Energy Company.”
Discuss the video from the views of absolutism and Relativism.
What are examples of virtues, values, and moral concepts? How do each of these relate to one another? In what ways are they separate and in what ways are they connected? If a person is described as virtuous, is this the same as saying that person is moral or ethical? Why or why not? Provide examples.
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