CH3 - Chapter Three Framing the Problem Common Morality...

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Chapter Three Framing the Problem
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Common Morality • Common morality : Moral standards,rules and principles that are shared by virtually everyone, regardless of other differences we might have. In other words, it is the basic moral beliefs most of us share. ANALOGY • Common sense : It is the common beliefs about the world and about what we must do in order to survive.
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Common Morality Common features of human life that suggest the sorts of general moral beliefs we share: 1. Vulnerability : We are susceptible to pain and ultimately to death. 2. Autonomy : We are capable for thinking for ourselves……. 3. Interdependency: Our survival depends on others not harming us, and get what we want through cooperative endeavor. 4. Shared expectations and goals : Beyond wanting things for ourselves as individuals, we may want things together. Groups working towards a shared end. 5. Common moral traits : Fair-mindedness, self-respect, respect for others, compassion, and benevolence toward others are common traits.
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Common Morality Engineers share those moral beliefs, and many engineering codes of ethics reflect them. Codes oblige engineers to protect the public, and this gives them the privileged position of trust and responsibility. This duty has a special connection with common morality but keeping in mind : 1. We should distinguish common morality from both personal morality and professional morality. 2. Many of the standard provisions of engineering codes are simply specific applications of common morality to the engineering profession. 3. In common morality priority is given to negative duties-duties not to cause harm, not to be dishonest…. 4. The relationship of common morality to professional morality is complex.
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Moral Justification Professional ethics seeks a body of moral beliefs that should be accepted by all members of the profession in question. This surely will cut across religious differences. A minimalist set of values( to insure common moral values to be worked out by all human societies ) include: 1. Positive duties of mutual support, loyalty and reciprocity. 2. Negative duties to refrain from harming others 3. Norms for determining just procedures in resolving issues of justice.
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Analyzing a Case A primary task in analyzing a case is to assemble all relevant information to the resolution of the ethical problem (s) it presents. An ethics case study describes a set of circumstances that calls for ethical reflection. The analysis begins with two questions : 1. What are the relevant facts? 2. What are the relevant kinds of ethical considerations ?
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• The story of Steven Severson: His background His work. • Question: Was it unethical for Steven to
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This note was uploaded on 02/07/2011 for the course ENMG 504 taught by Professor Halazoghbi during the Spring '09 term at American University of Beirut.

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CH3 - Chapter Three Framing the Problem Common Morality...

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