1 part discussion: We have three main options for ethics: Deontology, Utilitarianism, and Virtue. The deontologist argues that ethics is duties and rules. To be moral is to act according to those rules and for the sake of those rules. The commitment and struggle in following the rules make you the most moral. The utilitarian values pleasurable results only. They are not selfish but value the most happiness for the most number of people. Rules are… guidelines. According to the Utilitarian, rules should be broken when they are in the way of community happiness. Good intentions are ideal for the deontologist, but meaningless for the Utilitarian because they focus on the consequences. Virtue does not focus on results or rules at all but on the character. They think the goal of ethics is not simply to do good things but to become a good person. Once you are a good person, you no longer need rules, and you naturally create good consequences, but those are secondary. They focus on becoming courageous so that both their actions and their very being are neither reckless nor cowardly. The virtues sit between two character faults, and the virtuous man correctly makes the right decision because he understands all the many variables of life. Which is right? Let’s try to understand this through a popular hypothetical. Imagine a trolley is running down a track and is unable to stop. Tied to the track are 5 people, and the trolley is soon to kill all five. You look for a way to avert this disaster, and you spot a lever to change the tracks. If you pull the lever, you will divert the trolley to a different track and away from the 5 people. However, there is still one person on the top track. If you pull the lever, you will kill that one person and save the 5. Is the moral answer to this dilemma to pull the lever, or is that immoral? Why? Please answer with the context of the three ethical positions. 2nd part You’re on track C. The trolley is headed toward A and will kill all people in its way. You can switch the trolley to B or C, whichever you choose. I suspect many would want to turn the track to B since you are C, but 1) why do you consider yourself more special? Is option B actually selfish? The deontologist would say pulling the lever at all is wrong because you are intentionally killing someone, and the consequences do not matter. The Utilitarian would say that both B and C are equal options, but they would equally prefer either. The virtue ethicist would say that choosing yourself to die is courageous, therefore virtuous. 2) Who is right? Please write 250 words in response, no plagiarism.
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