Ancient Greece Ancient Greece was the birthplace of Western philosophical ethics. The ideas of Socrates c. The sudden flowering of philosophy during that period was rooted in the ethical thought of earlier centuries.
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One term one of my classes was composed of the students studying to be auto mechanics. My mother-in-law's comment was that was an appropriate group to teach ethics. My wife's colleagues wanted to know the names and service center of anyone who passed the course.
Everyone seemed to find amusement in the idea of teaching ethics to auto mechanics. But auto mechanics are not the only ones whose ethics are popularly questionable.
Businessmen as a group are often thought to have dubious practices that take advantage in various ways of anyone they can. Businessmen do not help their cause any when they point out that their practices are "not a matter of ethics, but of business", or when they point out that they are only doing their job, as if a "hit man" would not have the same lame excuse.
Being paid to do the wrong thing does not make it the right thing. Politicians are just assumed by most people to be unethical in terms of doing "anything" to get elected and stay in office -- whether in lying, being "bought", pandering to the lowest common denominator, or currying their community's favor through pork barrel spending of tax payers' money.
Some doctors Wht did i learn frm ethics thought to gouge whomever they can, tell patients they need procedures they don't, and cover up each others' mistakes or malfeasance. Even clergymen have not been able to maintain their balance on moral pedestals, and are not immune from giving bad moral advice.
While some problems are caused by bad people not caring what is wrong, most problems probably arise from good people not knowing or fully understanding what is wrong, particularly when what is wrong is a traditional or sanctioned way of doing something.
Yet most K schools do not think they need to teach ethics, but need only to teach obedience to laws and rules, and to teach moral characteristics, such as loyalty, faith, and perseverance, as outlined in The Book of Virtues.
In part that is because they mistake being ethical for obeying the law and following "codes of ethics", which are the practices sanctioned by industries, professions, and organizations. They also make the mistake of believing that because people have learned, while growing up, how to behave appropriately in typical business or social situations that those people know what is ethical to do in more complex business or social situations.
Ethics is not the study of what is legal or socially accepted or tolerated; it is the study of what is right and wrong -- in the sense of trying to discover reasonable general principles that will help us decide what we ought to do and what we ought not to do in all cases.
Most people think that obeying the law and company policy or following the Golden Rule is sufficient. But laws and policies have loopholes and are often incomplete. In many high schools, the handbook of specific rules grows thicker and thicker each year because students are most creative at figuring out what wrong things no one has thought to make a rule against in the past.
The list of specific rules grows in response to such creativity, but it will always be behind because you cannot create specific rules that will anticipate every possible bad act.
There are many legal activities or activities not specifically prohibited by written rules or laws that are not morally right to do. Moreover, there are wrong or morally bad laws and rules.
And it is not always the case that they should be obeyed until they can be changed, because sometimes they are so bad that obedience to them is a greater moral transgression than disobedience. And a rule-based set of ethics is problematic for two other reasons: Bad rules are rules nevertheless if your system is such that you must obey the rules no matter what.
Instead, what we need, I believe, is a principle-based ethics in which, if possible, we figure out what makes acts be right or wrong or what makes things be good or bad, and then have general principles that we can use as guidelines in all situations, along with some thinking and some judgment, to determine what would be right to do.
Principles also can be overridden or modified if there is good reason to do that. When someone is operating by principles, rather than by rules, it is appropriate that if you show them their principles are unreasonable that they change them.
Whereas someone who is just following rules or "obeying orders" is normally likely to say something like "It doesn't matter about the outcome.
These are the rules I have to follow. I ask college students how they decide what is right or wrong, and they tend to come up with a list that does not contain all the kinds of reasons they often give for why something is right or wrong, but even if they were to make a complete and accurate list of how they determine what is right or wrong, it would be easy to show that none of their principles will stand scrutiny.
The list typically includes: Do what is best for yourself. Do what you were taught by your parents and behave the way they behaved.
Do what makes people happy. Obey your conscience [or your heart]. These are not meant by the students to be taken together, but individually as their primary or only operating principle.These are our ethics; the things we learn as we grow that govern the rest of our lives.
What are ethics? Why is having the right ethics so important? Ethics are important for a number of reasons. First, ethics are important because they give us a baseline for understanding the concepts of right and wrong.
Ethics help us to have a ready understanding of how to react to a certain situation long before that situation . In my last post, I wrote about all of the nuts and bolts it took for me to create an online ethics course for massage therapists. Today, I’m going to discuss some of what I learned from the beta testers.
Dec 15, · Ethics are a system of moral principles and a branch of philosophy which defines what is good for individuals and society. At its simplest, ethics is a system of moral principles. They affect how.
Mar 28, · 10 things I learned from my Ethics Class. Ethics – one thing I was sure I already know before I even take up COM I was sure about what I should and should not do. But studying ethics isn’t just about figuring which game has the best set of rules– even with the values you already have, you’ll still want to have the capability to provide a satisfying answer the question of “Why” you do whatever you choose to do– not just to other people, but hopefully to yourself.
Feb 09, · A useful education in ethics will demand that students examine their own ethical beliefs and the customs of their society with both openness and critical scrutiny. It .