Ethical Issues In The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas

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Ursula LeGuin reflects on an ethical problem in her short story The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas. She describes Omelas as a place where everyone can enjoy simple pleasures without technology or class. However, this apparent “perfection” of Omelas, knowing to all its citizens, depends on the suffering of a child who is kept starving underground in a dark, squalid location. Some “walk away” from the wonderful world of happiness built on the small child’s suffering. The author’s message asks the question of the ethical attitude of society towards problems in the real world, “Is the happiness of thousands worth the suffering of one?”
The story follows a simple plot where the narrator describes Omelas, the city filled with joy and festivities. After letting the reader imagine this great city, the narrator brings down the question “Now do you believe in them?” (Ursula LeGuin) The truth is that all of Omelas’ happiness and joy depend on the misery of a single child. If the child is rescued, the whole city of Omelas will falter. The narrator says, “One thing I know there is none of in Omelas is guilt” (Ursula LeGuin). The ones who stay in the city have no guilt of their happiness and the ones who walk away from Omelas have guilt about the “perfect” place that thrives
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We discuss to each other about the idea of using a human being as an object or enslaving a person because they are cheap to maintain for producing goods, or killing a person for his or her organs to save many lives. There are a lot of examples in life about how we live with moral imperative to deliver the greatest good for the masses by ignoring the suffering of the few. Ursula LeGuin compels readers to ask if they are willing to sacrifice themselves to life which comes tragic trade-off. Some say yes and some say
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