- Divine command theory does not tend to fulfill people’s emotional needs.
- Divine command theory cannot provide clear motivations for being moral.
- Divine command theory helps make sense of humanity’s place in the world.
- Divine command theory is reflective in that reason plays a role in determining right and wrong.
- Lying is impermissible because it reveals a dishonest nature.
- Lying is impermissible because it is intrinsically wrong.
- Lying is impermissible because society demands honesty.
- Lying is impermissible because it causes others to mistrust you.
Jimmy is a nurse who cares for the aging Mr. Buckner in New York City. Mr. Buckner is a very wealthy man who has saved a lot of money over the years. One day, Mr. Buckner takes Jimmy aside and tells him that he has decided what to do with his money after he dies. Mr. Buckner tells Jimmy that he wants Jimmy to give all of the money to the New York Knicks basketball team. He makes Jimmy promise three times that he will do this. Jimmy thinks Mr. Buckner has gone crazy, but Mr. Buckner dies before they can discuss it further.
- Jimmy does what he promised and gives Mr. Buckner’s fortune to the New York Knicks.
- Jimmy breaks his promise to Mr. Buckner and instead donates the money to a basketball league that helps inner city youth.
- Jimmy decides to keep Mr. Buckner’s fortune for himself, as payment for all his work.
- Jimmy breaks his promise to Mr. Buckner and uses the money to pay for an operation his mother needs.
Many people confuse topics of religion, social etiquette, and law with ethical topics.
- Anthony follows the flow of traffic, even if he is exceeding the speed limit.
- Tara installs a wheelchair ramp at her business to meet government regulations.
- Marcy disapproves of working on Sundays because she was taught it was a day of rest.
- Nathan talks loudly on his cell phone while standing in line at the store.
- Hurting someone’s feelings
- Forcing someone to do something
- Disrespecting someone’s wishes
- Debating with someone
- Egoism promotes the common good by putting individuals first.
- Egoism is focused on positive effects for the agent.
- Egoism does not allow for inherent human dignity.
- Egoism does not account for the agent’s pain.
- Philosophy teaches us about other cultures.
- Philosophy helps us understand how people behave.
- Philosophy identifies ways we can improve relationships.
- Philosophy allows us to construct logical arguments.
“People who are generous help those in need however they can.”
- Virtue-based ethics
- Kantian deontology
- Donuts are the best breakfast food. I had one this morning.
- If you don’t water your plants, they will wilt. If you water them, they will be healthy. If you fertilize them, they will be healthier.
- I got eight hours of sleep and ate a healthy breakfast. Therefore, I am going to have a great day.
- Every time your phone rings, your brain releases a chemical called dopamine.
An argument is strong and the conclusion is true, but both premises are false.
- God commands that certain crimes be punished by death, but many people oppose capital punishment.
- God forbade eating pork in the Torah, but in the book of Acts, he got rid of that prohibition.
- God commands that we forgive everyone, so I told my brother that I still love him after he broke my car window.
- God forbids lying, but I lie in pretty much every other sentence I say.
Karl receives a call from the local police, who are concerned that his son may be growing and distributing an illegal (but not dangerous) drug. Karl knows this suspicion to be true. If he admits it to the police, his son will be arrested, and their family’s name will be tarnished. If he lies, the police will assume the tip they got was false and go away.
- Karl’s lying is morally wrong because his obligation to the state is more important than his son staying out of trouble, even though it would bring about no benefit for the state.
- Karl’s lying is morally right because he has an obligation to protect his son, even if his son’s actions cause harm to others.
- Karl’s lying is morally wrong because it is sinful to lie, even when the consequences are less than desirable.
- Karl’s lying is morally right because keeping his son out of trouble and his family’s reputation clear will bring about more happiness than if his son is arrested.
- Moral truths are universal.
- Moral truths do not exist.
- Moral truths differ from culture to culture.
- Moral truths differ from person to person.
“Abortion is acceptable if the woman doesn’t want to be a mother.”
- Kantian deontology
I try to hurt my roommate by hitting him in the back, but I actually help his chronic back pain instead.
What problem with utilitarianism does this situation demonstrate?
- The intent of an action determines the morality of the action.
- Intent isn’t a factor for the utilitarian, so this action is good, even though I meant to cause harm.
- An agent is equally responsible for actions he chooses to take or not take.
- Utilitarianism is committed to treating everyone’s happiness equally.
- Kayden is looking for an ethical framework that says, “Right is right, even if nobody is right.”
- Kelly is looking for an ethical framework that respects diverse traditions.
- Karin is looking for an ethical framework that has a basis outside of humanity.
- Keith is looking for an ethical framework that focuses on his own character.
- A flourishing society requires flourishing individuals.
- A society is more just if it enforces laws for the benefit of everyone.
- Ethical standards are easily upheld when they benefit others.
- The rule of law motivates actions for individuals.
- Oswald gives 10% of his income to charity because giving to charity generally brings about greater good.
- Odessa saves a drowning man because she knows his family needs him in order to be happy.
- Opal grows lots of plants and flowers to help offset her carbon footprint.
- Omar breaks into a large store because he needs food and the store’s loss will be insignificant.
“Capital punishment is morally wrong because killing people is always wrong, no matter what.”
- Kantian deontology
- Virtue-based ethics
- Divine command theory
Marcus hurries past a mugging because he doesn’t want to get involved.
- universal law
- categorical imperative
Judy owns a bookstore/cafe that has always done pretty well. However, a new competitor recently opened a block away, and Judy’s business has decreased.
- Judy buys stock in the competitor’s business until she’s the majority shareholder.
- Judy invents a distasteful rumor about her competitor and tells it to her customers.
- Judy writes a letter to her competitors asking why they opened their store so close to hers.
- Judy launches a marketing campaign focused on her business’ benefit to the local community.
- Ethics is not subject to the same level of rigor as other philosophical pursuits.
- Ethical behavior has little to do with interpersonal interaction.
- Ethical principles are just personal opinions.
- Objectivity is vital to ethical thought.
- Donating to a charity out of a sense of superiority and ego
- Lying so that a coworker will lose his job
- Participating in an anti-war protest due to personal convictions about the morality of war
- Refusing to engage in gossip out of a sense of respect for others’ privacy
Why is egoism unique among ethical theories?
- It is the only theory to maintain that there are no universal truths regarding what is good.
- It is the only theory to acknowledge conflicting interests as harmful to a system of ethics.
- It is the only theory to equate what is good to what is performed in the name of self-interest.
- It is the only theory to explain the way things ought to be in regards to what is right and wrong.