A Choice Between Consequentialism And Virtue Ethics Essay

A Choice Between Consequentialism And Virtue Ethics Essay

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When given a choice between consequentialism and virtue ethics, which is the better theory when dealing with moral dilemmas such as the trolley problem? To make this determination we must first decide which theory produces the best answer, and how that answer is better. Using only moral dilemma based scenarios, much like the trolley problem case, consequentialism especially in its utilitarian form, always results in a better outcome then virtue ethics, in that the outcomes will always better the most people, regardless of who makes the decision. To prove this, we will look at several scenarios, we will look at the similarities and differences of how the problems are addressed in both theories, then use that information to show why the utilitarian outcomes are better.
First, we must compare these moral theories, to start we will look at the similarities and differences between the two theoretical systems. In the case of these two theories, there are no real similarities other than the fact that they both produce positive and negative outcomes. However, we will see differences in these theories to include the basis of the decision making process of the two systems, and how each determines the morality of the decision that is made. When it comes to virtue ethics, the basis of the decision comes from within the person making the decision, meaning that the person makes whatever choice they believe to be right. This being much different from a utilitarian form of decision making, which entails hedonic calculus, a math formula used to weigh the the happiness and pain of all those affected by the decision and choose the option that provides the most happiness for the greatest amount of people. Another difference being the way morality of ...


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...specially in the utilitarian form.
In conclusion, we have looked at the similarities and differences of these two moral theories, with respect to their decision making processes, as well as how to determine the morality of the decisions that have been made. We analyzed several cases of different forms to include, a case with a positive and negative outcome, a case with all negative outcomes, and a case where all the participants were of poor character; to show practical examples of these two theories. We also looked at the outcomes from those cases to determine which system produces the better outcomes and why. After studying all of these findings we have determined that when it comes to a better moral theory, between virtue ethics and consequentialism, consequentialism is the better system for consistently making moral decisions, especially in its utilitarian form.

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