Utilitarianism Vs. Utilitarianism : Argument Against The Absolute And Rigid Based Moral Codes

Utilitarianism Vs. Utilitarianism : Argument Against The Absolute And Rigid Based Moral Codes

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According to Williams (94), most traditional codes of conduct consist of sets of rules about preferred types of actions. For example, the Ten Commandments focus on particular types of actions, prohibiting people from committing them. These forms of ethical codes are absolute, telling people to do or not to do rather than addressing exceptional circumstances. In fact, a majority of philosophical and customary moral codes consists mainly of absolute rules. In contrast, utilitarianism rejects the absolute, rigid based moral codes that categorize whole classes of actions as wrong or right. Utilitarianism espouses the idea that it is improper to treat whole classes of actions (such as stealing) as right or wrong because they can result in different effects (right or wrong) when done under different contexts. They are these effects which determine if the actions were right or wrong in the first place.
The third argument raised in support of utilitarianism is that it makes moral judgments to be objectively true. According to Sidgwick (39), utilitarianism shows how moral dilemmas can have objectively true solutions. According to this author, some people often consider morality to be a subjective topic depending on people’s beliefs or desires. Utilitarianism however provides an objective method for showing which moral actions are right and which ones are wrong. Objectivity means that ones people embrace the utilitarianism perspective, then every decision about how to act will depend on the consequences of the act. If it is possible to predict the amount of utility that will be produced by different possible actions, then it is possible to tell which actions are right or wrong beforehand. Essentially, that is the core basis of utilitarianis...


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...o rational driver will make a decision that will lead to the death of 20 people if that is avoidable, be it by sacrificing the life of one person. The moral idea here is that reasoning should be able to conform to the dictates of common sense in order to reinforce understanding of maximum utility (Ben, 455).
The third response is that utilitarianism does not necessarily reject important moral concepts such as right and justice. Instead, utilitarianism accepts and uses these moral concepts but interprets them from the perspective of maximum good possible. For utilitarians, to speak of justice is to speak of individual treatments that are important to the promotion of overall wellbeing. It could be wrong to treat other people unjustly but this claim only makes sense if it is always wrong to treat other people unjustly and never morally justified (Hare, 12-14).

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