February 18, 2014
La Tara Miller
During the next few weeks, this course will be discussing ethics and social responsibility. To begin, I will look at this week’s reading material and compare the similarities and differences between virtue theory, utilitarianism, and deontological ethics. I will briefly discuss the differences in how each theory addresses ethics and morality and provide a personal experience explaining the relationship between virtue, values and moral concepts as they relate to one of the three theories.
Virtue theory, also known as virtue ethics, focuses more on individual characteristics then on rules and or consequences of acts. This means the primary focus is whether or not the person committing the act or action is one who upholds high morals and virtues. For Aristotle, moral virtue is the only practical road to effective action. What the person of good character loves with right desire and thinks of as an end with right reason must first be perceived as beautiful. Hence, the virtuous person sees truly and judges rightly, since beautiful things appear as they truly are only to a person of good character. It is only in the middle ground between habits of acting and principles of action that the soul can allow right desire and right reason to make their appearance, as the direct and natural response of a free human being to the sight of the beautiful. (Sachs, n.d.)
Utilitarianism ethics emphasizes the action as being morally beneficial to a group. This course of ethics is often known as “the greatest good for the greatest number” or simply put, “the greater good” (Boylan, 2009). Another way to interpret this is that the “self” is removed. Like a mother or father running into the burning house to get their children. They do not think about the harm that might come to them, just in getting their children out safe....