I. Ethics - I Philosophical Ethics Consequential vs...

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I. Philosophical Ethics Consequential vs. deontological ethical theories Consequential : whether an act is right or wrong depends only on its consequences E.g., Utilitarianism: An act is right if it brings about the greatest good for the largest number of persons Deontological : whether an act is right or wrong depends on considerations besides its consequences Consequences might be one factor, but it is not the only one Examples: divine command theory, ethical theories based on notions of rights, justice, honor, etc. Anything other than good consequences Rights Again, this is a deontological notion Positive vs. Negative Negative rights Others cannot hinder your pursuit or use of whatever you have a right to I honor your negative right to life by simply leaving you alone Also: Property rights Means others, including the government, cannot take your property Sometimes individual property rights conflict Positive rights Others are obligated to help insure your access to whatever you have a right to E.g., pubic education Also: social security Given the law as it stands today, when I reach a certain age, your taxes must cover my social security check Natural vs. Legal (e.g., constitution) Natural rights: rights you have just by being a person Right to life When read about human rights abuses, this is what they’re talking about Legal: rights given to you by the government e.g., rights in the Bill of Rights are all legal They might parallel natural rights, but it gives the executive branch of government the authority to enforce
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A. “Balaam” Opens with a discussion about being a “man” Better term would be ‘person’ Doesn’t sound like it’s restricted to males Q: In terms of ethics, what’s so special about being a person Think about being a person as opposed to being a newspaper What are some of the differences? ANS: Persons are the kinds of beings that have rights Q: what is C.S. Lewis’s hnaus ? 1 ANS: There are non-human persons who have also been created by God Persons in the technical sense Capable of bearing rights Q: Did Acosta do the right thing? What were the issues involved? What was the conflict? Loyalty vs. Clerical duty I.e., both Acosta and Malloy feel that issuing curses against other intelligent beings who have not done anything to suggest ill will or malevolence is somewhat in conflict with their clerical duties At the very least, it’s a tough call Q: Are these deontological or consequential issues? Answer: both are deontological Two different deontological principles pulling in opposite directions At the end, the problem is resolved because God intervenes Acosta doesn’t have to figure out if he’s doing the wrong thing God informs him What about us? Why do we naturally root for our own college, state, and nation? Q: Should we do so?
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I. Ethics - I Philosophical Ethics Consequential vs...

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