Ethics Similarities

Topics: Ethics, Morality, Virtue ethics Pages: 3 (726 words) Published: June 16, 2013
Ethics Similarities and Differences
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ETHICS SIMILARITIES AND
DIFFERENCES
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Ethics Similarities and Differences
Ethics is defined as “a system of moral principles” and “the rules of conduct recognized in respect to a particular class of human actions or a particular group, culture, etc.” (Ethics). In Basic Ethics (2009), ethics is defined as “the science concerning the “right and wrong” of human action” (Boylan, 2009, p. 3). What follows is a discussion of three types of ethical theories; virtue, utilitarianism, and deontological ethics. They will be compared, contrasted, and a description posed of the similarities and differences in how each theory addresses ethics and morality. Finally, a relation to personal experience will be presented to explain the relationship between virtue, values, and moral concepts as they relate to one of the three theories. Virtue ethics is derived from the character of a person. Virtue ethics is at times referred to as agent-based or character ethics. Virtue ethics is based on the notion that throughout life one should strive to nurture excellence in oneself and others. In the example of baseball, a baseball player is admitted to the Hall of Fame after a stellar career though he had an off-year over a multi-year career. Over time virtue ethics is forgiving in that it allows character to set the tone over the event time span. One or two slights should not tarnish a whole career, depending on their severity. Putting the needs of the team first above one’s own personal interest is known as utilitarianism. “Utilitarianism is a theory that suggests that an action is morally right when that action produces more total utility for the group than any other alternative” (Boylan, 2009, p. 153). This theory is popular in the United States government as it calculates “The greatest good for the greatest number” (Boylan, 2009, p. 153). Utilitarianism is the moral worth of a particular action as...

References: Boylan, M. (2009). Basic Ethics. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.
Ethics. (n.d.). Retrieved April 28, 2013, from Dictionary.com: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/ethics
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