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Unformatted text preview: "Ethics
"Ethics has to do with my religious beliefs.“
"Being ethical is doing what the law requires.“
"Ethics consists of the standards of behavior our
I don't know what the word means."
These replies might be typical of our own. The
meaning of "ethics" is hard to pin down, and the views
many people have about ethics are shaky. What is Ethics? Like Baumhart's first respondent, many people tend to
equate ethics with their feelings. But being ethical is
clearly not a matter of following one's feelings. A person following his or her feelings may recoil from
doing what is right. In fact, feelings frequently deviate
from what is ethical. Nor should one identify ethics with religion. Most
religions, of course, advocate high ethical standards.
Yet if ethics were confined to religion, then ethics
would apply only to religious people. But ethics applies as much to the behavio...
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- Fall '12