Week 1 questions .docx - How one classifies a situation as right or wrong depends on where one grew up and what culture they are part of Someone in a

Week 1 questions .docx - How one classifies a situation as...

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Unformatted text preview: How one classifies a situation as right or wrong depends on where one grew up and what culture they are part of. Someone in a certain culture might identify a situation to be wrong, while someone else in another culture might identify the same thing to be right. This belief is known as cultural relativism. An example of this of is how Muslim people tend to show less skin as possible because they believe it is wrong for females to show so much. However, in another culture wearing short shorts is ok. The reason why this moral theory is convincing or appealing is because different societies have different moral norms and different customs, the rightness or wrongness of a situation or action depends on the culture. Therefore, this moral theory provides tolerance of other cultures. The important thing to remember is that one cannot judge how different cultures tend to do things. An example of this may be how in certain cultures like the Carthaginian society infant sacrificial killings were practiced. In today's society this type of practice is not accepted. One may look at the Carthaginian society as immoral but one has to acceptance the existence of different behaviors. Someone who believes in cultural relativism believes that whatever is right or wrong depends on the culture; therefore the morality of culture practices such as genocide or executing homosexuals is viewed as society following the culture's own moral codes. A relativist believes that one cannot criticize how or why certain cultures may do things differently, they simply recognize the fact that the member of the society are following their moral code. Personally, I do not agree with the relativist position. While reading the book I learned that those who believe that their own culture should be criticized cannot be relativist, instead, those people, like me, believe in objective moral principles. I understand that there are people who believe in what they practice and how they handle certain situations, whether that is killing homosexuals, believing slavery is good, or committing genocide. However, I believe that one must judge those practices. I believe more in individual morality. Like I learned in the book, if we look at the moral rules, rules that are accepted by members of a certain society, as the rules we must strictly follow, we do ourselves a disservice. I believe that we as human beings all have that one feeling that tells us killing is wrong and that owning slaves and beating them is wrong, a relativist would say that killing and slavery is a part of the society and since the society accepts it then they should too. Questioning certain actions is something very important and therefore I do not agree with the belief of cultural relativism. Utilitarianism is a theory that contains the greatest happiness principle. Both the principle and theory state that one must choose the action that will promote the greatest amount of happiness to more people. Therefore, in order to call an action good, one can not only please themselves but must create the most happiness for the greater amount of people. Looking at the definition given in the book, consequentialist is defined as the “ethical reasoning which looks to the consequences of alternative action to determine which is right.” In other words, consequentialist is when one determines what is right by looking at the consequences of the actions. Utilitarianism is considered to be a consequentialist moral theory because in order to determine what is right one needs to determine if the action they are doing will promote happiness to the greatest amount of people. For example, if one had two option, telling the truth and hurting people or lying and “saving” people for the pain, people who believe in the utilitarianism theory agree that lying would be the right choice. As I learned in the book and by reading the notes, some actions that are not legal such stealing is considered right only if it is promoting happiness for a great amount of people. Act utilitarianism is when the greatest happiness principle is put into play when deciding what actions are morally right and what actions we should take. How I see act utilitarianism is that there is no wrong action if it will promote the greatest amount of happiness. Rule utilitarianism is the belief that only applies the principle of greatest happiness when considering which moral rules must be adopted. I interpret this by saying that instead of taking any actions that are necessary to promote happiness to more people, one needs to follow the rules that are already set. An act utilitarian will think it is ok to kill someone when it will promote the most happiness to many people. For example, if one saw a serial killer they would not hesitate to kill because they are aware that it will produce happiness to a large number of people. A rule utilitarian would disagree because there are rules that go against killing, however they may agree if they adopted a rule that says it is ok to kill someone who has killed thousands of people because it will prevent other killings. ...
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