Theories of Moral Actions
Human being act accordingly to their beliefs. Actions are not spontaneously done. For instance, complicated problems like abortion or death penalty are extremely hard to decide. Actions pertaining to these are always guided by theories. As a result of these theories, individual actions can be either morally good or bad. Human being’s actions are bounded to follow what is good for the many, to look at the means on getting there, or to fulfill their ultimate goals.
For most human being, they tend to pick the best outcome for the most people. That is the main purpose of the utilitarianism. Utilitarianism is an ethical theory that’s holds that an action is right if it produces, or if it tends to produce, the greatest amount of good for the greatest number of people affected by the action. Otherwise the action is wrong (DeGeorge, 44). Utilitarian accept the principle of utility. Utility, in economic theory, is the amount of satisfaction or pleasure that somebody gains from consuming a commodity, product, or service (Encarta®, 2009).According to utilitarianism; we should evaluate an action by looking at its consequences, weighing the good effects against the bad effects on all the people affected by it. If the good outweighs the bad, if the bad outweighs the good, it tends to be a bad action (DeGeorge, 45).
There three types of utilitarianism: hedonistic, eudaimonistic, and ideal. The basis of the former type is pleasure and pain. It can also be associated the absence of pain (De George, 45). For example, eating in a fancy restaurant gives a positive amount of pleasure. In the other hand, being tortured gives a negative amount of pleasure. As DeGeorge stated the calculation of the action is easy because we are dealing with the same amount of units. Eudaimonistic utilitarianism states that the basic value of calculation is happiness, not pleasure (DeGeorge, 45). In this approach, the quality of pleasure may differ from person to person....