Ethics Discussion Question 3

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Consider Kant’s Ethics and answer the following questions:

A) How is it possible that the right action may not have any moral worth or moral content?

For example, Kant claims that protecting your own life is a right thing to do (it is a duty-toward-oneself; it is each person’s moral obligation). But Kant seems to think that when you run away from danger out of your inborn instinct to protect your life, you do not act morally and your act does not have any moral worth. In this case, you do what is right (you protect your life), but this action does not have any moral value. Why not?

B) Kant thinks that protecting your life out of instinct does not count as a fulfillment of your moral obligation to protect your life. What is the proper moral motivation to protect your life for Kant? [150 words]

Deadline: By 11:59 PM on Friday. Feel free to post earlier!

Readings for post:

Landau, pp. 159-189 [The Kantian Perspective]

Shafer-Landau, Russ.The Fundamentals of Ethics, Russ Shafer-Landau, Oxford University Press. (2009) 89-102.

Part 3

Reply to anther students post below by bringing up a point ,problem , or alternate perspective

reply should be 100 – 150 words in length.

A)Kant believes that any action that may be motivated by a duty can be moral and the right thing to do but may not have a value based upon the action that is taken. The example given displays that if you are motivated by duty to protect yourself as you are valuable, that it most dependent on how you go about the action. Being a coward as by my interpretation of what was said is the reason why it has no moral value. It appears to me that if you act in the face of danger with regards to your own safety and decide to run or escape it’s the “right” thing to do but has no value because you are not dealing with the issue firsthand. It could be assumed that even in the same type of situation that may involve multiple people if you ran and saved people it has greater moral worth because you took into account the safety of other people.

B)The value seems to rely ultimately on the ability to make a decision that is for the greater good of yourself standing up for whatever the situation is and also dependent upon your motivation to help and the number of people that it will help given the situation.


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