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The world has transformed briskly from simplicity to complexity in the recent past. Such changes have triggered interminable conflicts and ethical dilemmas. Can you imagine that every step we take to advance ourselves somehow involves an ethical dilemma? “Why do we have moral dilemmas?” essay give the explanation of this statement.
Some ethical dilemmas are simple and stay that way in the long run, while others compound themselves. The inevitable reality is that we must solve these dilemmas with maximum efficiency to create pathways that can enable life to progress. Scholars have created many moral theories that are used to solve moral dilemmas, but each theory has limitations that make it inefficient to a certain degree. Such mishaps in the moral theories leave us with the question, “Which is the most efficient way to solve moral dilemmas?” Of all the theories, utilitarianism (especially Rule Utilitarianism) is the most efficient moral theory for dealing with dilemmas.
Rule utilitarianism is a type of utilitarianism. Utilitarianism, on the other hand, is a form of consequentialism that determines morality based on the effects that it has for most people. The theory asserts that the best actions are those that bring the greatest happiness for most people. Proponents of utilitarianism believe that the primary aim of morality is to maximize good like bringing happiness for most people and minimize bad by reducing consequences that cause pain for most people. Based on the ideology of maximum utility for most people, supporters of this theory reject supernatural laws, constitutions, and taboos. This theory not only serves the interests of the groups but also serves individual purposes. When applied to the individuals, the primary goal becomes choosing consequences that bring the best results for the individual. For instance, when someone walks into a library, he has to read a book that will bring him the greatest happiness. Utilitarianism is divided into two schools of thought. Act utilitarianism and rule utilitarianism. Both of them have the same framework, achieving the best consequences. Act utilitarianism operates under the principle of utility, which supports the idea that whenever we are making decisions, we should consider the overall welfare of everyone regardless of the stipulations of the law; rule utilitarianism stress on the significance of moral rules. It states that an action is justified if it conforms to the moral rule, and the moral rule is justified if it has the highest overall utility than other moral laws.
I use rule utilitarianism because it is consistent with moral judgment, moral experience, it is useful in solving problems, and it is scientifically valid. Rule utilitarianism advocates for the creation of moral roles that are likely to lead to the most happiness for the majority of people. This theory makes us think long term instead of thinking short term. For instance, when tacking the abortion law, this theory will consider the effects of the law on the happiness of the people in the long run rather than the immediate effects of the law. It establishes two types of rules; weak rules and strong rules. Strong rules are absolute and cannot be broken under any circumstances; for instance, if the criminalization of abortion is a strong rule, it is concrete and remains that way in all circumstances. Weak rules, on the other hand, can be broken when the need to break them arises. For instance, if the abortion rule is weak, there are exceptions to the rules. This theory is useful in solving problems because it helps us to solve real problems in real life by making us consider moral principles that benefit the majority when handling moral dilemmas in large scale and long term basis. Moreover, it is based on general scientific principles, which means it can be substantiated by considering dependable and independent variables.
Rule utilitarianism diverges from and has advantages over some theories like the natural law moral theory, ethical egoism, and divine command theory. The natural law moral theory states the rules that control human behavior comes from the natural world and human nature since everything has been placed in natural order and purpose. Furthermore, it states that everything in nature has a God-given role to play. Devine command, on the other hand, states that actions are right or wrong based on the commands of god rather than their consequences. Unlike to rule utilitarianism, these theories are underpinned by abstract beings. There is no scientific evidence for the existence of gods, although practically half of the world believes in supernatural beings. Ethical egoism says that we should pursue our self-interest. It differs from rule utilitarianism since it focuses on the interest of individuals as the rule utilitarianism is focused on the interests of the majority. Moreover, in a case where people are having clashing interests like one group pouring sewage in a river and other opposing the first group, rule utilitarianism will consider the laws that are meant to create happiness for the largest number of people for a long term. It then offers a solution but ethical egoism cannot offer a solution in such a case.
I have been experiencing ethical dilemmas throughout my life; however, the most recent one was complex. Despite this, it made me grow. The dilemma involved my colleague called Isaac. The guy suffers from autism and Asperger’s, medical complications that made him vulnerable to misunderstanding situations, thus triggers ethical dilemmas easily. Autism made him vulnerable to distractions and veering off topics as Asperger’s made him vulnerable to anger. In that dilemma, Isaac had been approaching a girl that he met online. Tragically, she was underage and at the same time deceiving him that she loved him for financial benefits that she was receiving from him. This situation involved two ethical dilemmas. The first one was telling him that he was in a relationship with an underage. After considering the situation, I explained it to him, but he did not believe me. Instead, he asked the girl recurrently until the day when she accepted and proposed that since she was merely seventeen years, he waits until she turns eighteen the following year. Tragically, Isaac could not control his emotions; he got mad about it to the extent of committing suicide. The second dilemma was to weather to tell his parents or keep the secret and let him die. I decided to explain everything to his parents. They responded immediately and took him to a mental health facility which handled his Asperger’s and got him to the right mental state.
Before arriving at utilizing Rule utilitarianism, I had to consider some basic principles of ethics. Firstly, I considered the principle of critical reasoning, which states that statements should not be accepted as true without good reasons since they can either be true or false. In every statement, there is an ethical argument which constitutes premises in which the argument is bound, the argument itself, and the conclusion. The premises are supporting statements for arguments, which means that the stronger the premises, the stronger the argument. The conclusion is what one believes. Two people can come up with two different conclusions. Mine was to help my friend based on the argument that, “A known, trustworthy person is easier to believe than a stranger that you do not know.” The argument for my conclusion is strong, valid, and cogent, but the statement is abnormal because it does not state right or wrong. The conclusion is validated through evidence, which is proving a claim and premise of the statement. For this case, the conclusion was weak; thus, I had no business getting involved in the issue. Moreover, the actions of Isaac had no impact on me because, in a way, only things that directly affect us can be a danger to us. I also had no evidence that one trustworthy friend is better than a stranger you do not know. What if that stranger is a paragon of virtue?
The lack of evidence about helping him or leaving him made me resort to utilizing rule utilitarianism. I wanted to take a moral action that had the highest utility for the largest number of people. The moral rule that I considered, in this case, was telling the truth so that most people can benefit. Preventing Isaac from committing suicide could not only save his life, but it also had maximum utility for his family and friends.
In conclusion, ethical dilemmas are an inevitable part of human lives and become a blockade to progress. They have different effects on us from psychological stress to lawsuits, and in the long run, they prevent us from reaching our full potential if handled inefficiently. Scholars have postulated different theories used to solve them, but they are inefficient in one way or another. If we must thieve and reach our full potential, we should embrace the most effective moral theory for every ethical dilemma we find ourselves in.
The world has transformed briskly from simplicity to complexity in the recent past. Such changes have triggered interminable conflicts and ethical dilemmas. Every step we take to advance ourselves somehow involves an ethical dilemma. Some ethical dilemmas are simple and stay that way in the long run, while others compound themselves. The inevitable reality is that we must solve these dilemmas with maximum efficiency to create pathways that can enable life to progress. Scholars have created many moral theories that are used to solve moral dilemmas, but each theory has limitations that make it inefficient to a certain degree. Such mishaps in the moral theories leave us with the question, “Which is the most efficient way to solve moral dilemmas?” Of all the theories, utilitarianism (especially Rule Utilitarianism) is the most efficient moral theory for dealing with dilemmas.
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