A Choice Between Consequentialism And Virtue Ethics Essay

A Choice Between Consequentialism And Virtue Ethics Essay

Length: 1008 words (2.9 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

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 ...

... middle of paper ...

...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.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The 's Turn Towards Defining What Character And Virtue Mean Essay

- s turn towards Aristotelians’ approach to defining what character and virtue mean. In Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotelian is defined. Character is about a current state of being and action. In virtue ethics “character traits are stable, fixed, and reliable dispositions.” This means that a person with a specific character trait is constant in their actions. So someone who is honest is constantly honest in any situation whether or not it is easy. We are born with “natural tendencies” that help shape our character....   [tags: Ethics, Virtue, Virtue ethics, Aristotle]

Better Essays
1922 words (5.5 pages)

Ethics And Morals And Ethics Essay examples

- The first section was an introduction to the concept of ethics and morals. Morals and ethics were defined and the difference between them was established. Consequentialism is moral choose based on the outcome; working very similarly to cost-benefit analyzes. It uses common sense to come to conclusions and everyone including the user is equally considered in the conclusion. Utilitarianism is a form of consequentialism that uses happiness as the basis of determining if a choice is good or not. It is important to factor in both the quality and quantity of happiness....   [tags: Ethics, Virtue ethics, Morality, Immanuel Kant]

Better Essays
714 words (2 pages)

Ethical Ethics And Ethical Theories Essay example

- Ethical theories are a way of finding solutions to ethical dilemmas using moral reasoning or moral character. The overall classification of ethical theories involves finding a resolution to ethical problems that are not necessarily answered by laws or principles already in place but that achieve justice and allow for individual rights. There are many different ethical theories and each takes a different approach as to the process in which they find a resolution. Ethical actions are those that increase prosperity, but ethics in business is not only focused on actions, it can also involve consequences of actions and a person’s own moral character....   [tags: Ethics, Virtue, Virtue ethics, Utilitarianism]

Better Essays
1660 words (4.7 pages)

A Brief Look Into Ethics Essay

- Before getting to the topic of today discussion, first a brief look into Ethics will be an appropriate way to start. In this paper you will be presented with 2 cases that may challenge the way you think, and may help understand more about Ethics. Case 1: The Steaming Train What will you do. There is a runaway train steaming down the track, the train cannot be stooped no matter what. Ahead, on the track are 5 workers working on the train track unable to hear the train steaming down the track. The train is steaming straight for the five workers, however you just so happen to be next to a lever, that can redirect the fast train on to a different track....   [tags: Ethics, Deontological ethics, Virtue ethics]

Better Essays
764 words (2.2 pages)

Essay on Reviewing The Difficult Decision With My Company Officer

- When reviewing the difficult decision with my Company Officer, he discussed the pressures of passing command inspections, maintaining a professional relationship with your Chief, and preserving personal integrity. Firstly, he noted that ultimate goal of command inspections is to prove the operational readiness of the ship. The inspection will expose any failing parts of the ship and improve operational efficiency once they are fixed. Failing the inspection itself will have negative consequences, but those pale in comparison to punishments for being caught falsely signing the records, or “gundecking”....   [tags: Ethics, Utilitarianism, Virtue, Consequentialism]

Better Essays
1698 words (4.9 pages)

The Major Perspective Of Moral Reasoning And The First One I Will Cover Essay

- There are three major perspective of moral reasoning and the first one I will cover is Consequentialism. Consequentialism is a theory that the moral value of a certain act will be determined by its consequence, hence the the word “ consequence ” is inside consequentialism. The quote that is commonly used to present the idea of consequentialism is “ the ends justify the means ”. What the quote is saying is that for whatever action you take on a situation does not determine if you are a good person or not....   [tags: Ethics, Morality, Virtue, Virtue ethics]

Better Essays
1149 words (3.3 pages)

The Benefits Of Rossian Pluralism Over Monistic Moral Theories Essay

- The Benefits of Rossian Pluralism over Monistic Moral Theories Can morality be effectively described by a single moral duty. If we completely deconstruct morality itself are we left with a single intrinsic moral rule that is the basis of morality as a whole. Many ethical theories try to reduce morality to a single principle. Whether it be the respect of other 's autonomy, keeping promises, or producing the best possible outcome of any situation. Theories like these include Contractualism, Kantianism and Consequentialism among others....   [tags: Ethics, Morality, Virtue, Virtue ethics]

Better Essays
1857 words (5.3 pages)

My Moral And Ethical Decision Making Process Essay

- The history of my ethical background developed early in my childhood by my parents, grandparents, school and society. I grew up in a Christian based home where my parents and grandparents used the teachings in the bible to shape my moral and ethical decision-making process. My moral philosophy is rooted from the verse Matthew 7:12, which, states, “do to others whatever you would like them to do to you”, also known as the “Golden Rule”. (Book of Matthew, 2004). My grandparents lived by this statement every day and it is through their daily interactions with members of society that provided me with a living example on the significance of living by this rule....   [tags: Ethics, Morality, Virtue, Virtue ethics]

Better Essays
1125 words (3.2 pages)

Essay about Film Review : Making A Murderer

- On December 18th 2015 Netflix aired with great popularity a 10 part documentary series called “making a Murderer” The documentary, written by Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demo, present the case of Steven Avery; a convicted murderer exonerated on DNA evidence after serving 18 years for the assault and attempted murder of Penny Beerntsen. The writers present the series in a way that suggest that Avery was framed by the Manitowoc Country police department. and present that the police planted evidence to frame Steven Avery because he had been exonerated from the previous crime....   [tags: Ethics, Virtue, Virtue ethics, Business ethics]

Better Essays
1859 words (5.3 pages)

Consequentialism, Non- Consequentialism, Virtue Ethics and Care Ethics Essay

- Introduction This essay will provide a theoretical understanding of the four ethical frameworks: Consequentialism, Non- Consequentialism, Virtue Ethics and Care Ethics. When applied to a situation these frameworks help teachers to resolve and justify their decision making. The objective is to apply the four frameworks to the scenario Helping Molly, to establish the most ethical course of action. Finally, a recommended course of action will be justification. The overarching ethical issue present within the Helping Molly scenario is the community sponsorship and the alignment with school beliefs and initiatives....   [tags: Ethics]

Better Essays
1745 words (5 pages)