Some people believe that you can tell who a person is by what they do when no one is looking. Let’s look at the following case. John Doe, a nurse, has downloaded an application to his phone that allows him to download copyrighted textbooks for a nursing course (that Doe is going to take) without his Internet Service Provider knowing it. The application is called “Cloak” as in cloak of invisibility (a hooded coat one wears to make it so others cannot see you). The application disguises his phone and makes it so the information on it is inaccessible. John is aware that other people who are working and attending nursing school (like him) also use this software program for the same reason (and to save money). John Doe knows that his religion forbids him from using this application to download in this manner. John Doe is focused on his own economic situation and does not consider the publisher, author, and others involved in the books. Think about a course of social action; what social values should be used to address this moral issue and conflict.
Create a personal ethical philosophy and explain from which philosophy or philosophies (it must include at least one of the following: virtue ethics, Kantian ethics, utilitarianism, virtue ethics, or social contract ethics) you created it and why the contents are important and meaningful for you. List its precepts.
- Take your personal ethical philosophy statement and use it to work through John Doe’s case. What is moral and immoral per your theory?
- How would the veil of ignorance or a different theory of justice address John Doe’s case?
- Minimum of 2 sources cited (assigned readings/online lessons and an outside scholarly source)
- APA format for in-text citations and list of references
Expert Solution Preview
When addressing the moral issue and conflict presented in the case of John Doe, several social values should be considered. In this analysis, a personal ethical philosophy will be created and explained, drawing upon different ethical theories such as virtue ethics, Kantian ethics, utilitarianism, and social contract ethics. The precepts of this personal ethical philosophy will provide a foundation for assessing the moral and immoral aspects of John Doe’s actions. Additionally, the application of the veil of ignorance and other theories of justice will be explored to determine how they would address John Doe’s case.
Personal Ethical Philosophy:
My personal ethical philosophy is rooted in a combination of virtue ethics and Kantian ethics. Virtue ethics is based on cultivating moral character traits, such as honesty, integrity, and compassion. Kantian ethics, on the other hand, emphasizes the importance of moral duties and principles.
For me, this combination of virtue ethics and Kantian ethics is important and meaningful because it allows for a comprehensive approach to ethical decision-making. Virtue ethics emphasizes the development of one’s character, while Kantian ethics provides a clear framework for determining moral duties and obligations.
Precepts of my personal ethical philosophy include:
1. Acting with honesty and integrity: Upholding truthfulness, sincerity, and moral principles in all actions.
2. Respecting the dignity and autonomy of others: Recognizing the inherent worth of individuals and their right to make independent choices.
3. Promoting the well-being and welfare of others: Striving to bring about positive outcomes and minimize harm to others.
4. Practicing justice and fairness: Ensuring equitable treatment and considering the rights and needs of all individuals involved.
Moral Evaluation of John Doe’s Case:
According to my personal ethical philosophy, John Doe’s actions of downloading copyrighted textbooks using the “Cloak” application would be considered morally wrong. The act of downloading copyrighted material without permission violates the principles of honesty, integrity, and respecting the rights of others, including the publishers, authors, and other stakeholders involved in producing the textbooks. John Doe’s focus on his personal economic situation without considering the consequences for others is also contrary to the principles of promoting the well-being and welfare of others.
Addressing John Doe’s Case using the Veil of Ignorance:
The veil of ignorance, a concept from social contract ethics, requires individuals to make decisions impartially without knowledge of their own circumstances or position in society. Applying this theory to John Doe’s case, we would need to consider how our judgment would be altered if we were in the same situation with the same religious beliefs, economic circumstances, and access to the “Cloak” application.
However, regardless of the veil of ignorance, the core principles of honesty, integrity, and respecting the rights of others remain unchanged. Therefore, using this theory of justice would not fundamentally alter the moral evaluation of John Doe’s actions.
In conclusion, my personal ethical philosophy, which combines elements of virtue ethics and Kantian ethics, guides my assessment of moral issues. In the case of John Doe, his actions would be considered morally wrong based on these principles. The veil of ignorance, while a useful tool for considering different perspectives, does not alter the fundamental moral evaluation of his actions. By adhering to an ethical philosophy rooted in virtue and duty, we can make informed decisions that uphold universal principles of honesty, integrity, and respect for others.