Need to reply to these 2 discussion questions need to be 2 seperate | PHI 208 Ethics & Moral Reasoning | Ashford University


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1.In this week’s discussion, all the possible scenarios are hard to decide since lives will be lost for the greater good and pleasure with the absence of pain discussed in chapter 3 of the text. (Thames, 2018) However, it is important to remember that good isn’t always good and leaves us to decide for ourselves. Thus, our preferences in terms of a utilitarian would maximize our decisions for any ethical dilemmas. In the case for the single worker and the five workers on the tracks deciding what is right can be difficult because of the standards of morality. We as human beings or to some who disagree with utilitarianism, we should respect the rule of not killing an innocent person. Killing that single worker would violate the statute and would be wrong even though it would leave the greater amount of a positive outcome. However, the utilitarian would look past the individual’s preferences and investigate the matters for the happiness overall. If that were the case a pretty brave utilitarian would try everything in their power to help all six of the workers by maximizing their possibilities or risk losing all to have the overall happiness for all. But that is not the case because it would risk the individual thinking for the outcome to place himself in harm’s way and could possibly kill himself and the 5 workers. It’s an endless battle of confusion to decide and therefore would leave them to just make the right decision for themselves in hopes that the single worker would survive because that individual decided to help the 5 workers. That person who decided on the fate for the worker could be misconstrued as having the lack of respect for morality. As for the case of the large man being on the tracks pushing him on to the tracks to save the 5 workers is unethical even if he voluntarily decides to help those people. Everyone has value in themselves and overlooking that value the greater purpose of doing good for everyone conflicts with our own standards and codes of morality.


2.A utilitarian would say that the right thing to do is switch the lever to avoid hitting the five workers and only kill the one worker that is on the side track.  A utilitarian would also push the large man over the bridge to stop the train and save the five workers on the track.  The reasoning behind the Trolley Problem is that, “Moreover, we find this kind of reasoning invoked in politics, business, and science.  Think about how many political arguments appeal to the prosperity and well-being of the majority of citizens as the reason to be for or against certain policies.’  (Thames, 2018).  In these two cases a utilitarian would be justified in killing the one worker on the side track or killing the large man on the bridge, because he saved the majority of the workers on the track.  Another example, “most of us recognize a general moral duty not lie.  However, there are circumstances in which lying may seem to some people to be the morally right thing to do.”  (Thames, 2018).  The reasoning of saving the majority is more important when you do not know any of the workers on the track.  

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