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Immanuel Kant – Ethics Essay

Immanuel Kant was born in Konigsberg, East Prussia in 1724. He attended the Collegium Fridiricianum at eight years old where he was taught classicism. Then he went to the University of Konigsberg where he spent his career focusing on philosophy, mathematics, and physics. When his is father past away, Kant left the university and earned his living as a private tutor. In 1755 he returned to the University to receive his doctorate in 1756. Immanuel Kant remained at the University teaching for 15 years. He received his tenure at the University in 1770, where he stayed for the next 27 years.

In 1792 he was barred from teaching or writing on religious subjects do to his unorthodox approach in his teaching by King Fredrick William II. He returned to teaching after the king had passed away five years later. In his retirement he published a summary of his views on religion. Immanuel Kant passed away in 1804. Immanuel Kant was widely known for his categorical imperative theory. Categorical imperative is how one determines one’s duty, what principles are proper, and which are not. Doing one’s duty for the sake of duty itself is better than simply acting in agreement with one’s duty.

Telling the truth in order to benefit yourself is acting in accordance with duty and not acting for the sake of duty. The categorical imperative states, “Act only on that maxim whereby thou canst at the same time will it should become universal law(Keele, 2008). ” Maxim in this sentence is the moral part of your action. Categorical imperative tells us it is immoral to make an exception of our self. Just like my mother would say treat and act as you would want others to treat and act towards you. In the news I view an article about “School knife attack poses ethical dilemma for daily. ”

In this article they talk about the Worcester New identifying a schoolboy as a suspect. The news published the boy’s name and picture on Facebook putting the boy’s life at risk. After the boy was found the news took down the boy’s picture at once. Everyone was perplexed by this situation asking why they put picture up and then took it down. According to the Worcester News, the situation change, where they were trying to find the boy to stop him from hurting himself or others and then to protecting the child. Would the newspapers actions have been ethical according to Immanuel Kant’s Categorical

Imperative? First let’s take a look at the reasons why they did it. The newspaper stated they put his picture up to protect him and other, then took down to protect him. I believe they were acting in the best of society myself by putting the information up. According to Immanuel Kant’s theory they were acting in accordance with their duty. They had a duty to let the public know what was going on to protect other students and teachers If they didn’t act with such speed would the boy have been found so soon? I think not!

This boy could have went on a killing spree and if the Worcester News didn’t report it they would not have been acting in the best of society and would not have been doing their duty. But then to take down the information I feel is unethical. They don’t take down any information when it comes to any other person involved in a crime. Immanuel Kant stated that it is immoral to make an exception of yourself. The Worcester News should hold to the same standards as any other crime they report.

I understand that they are trying to protect the boy, but if you are going to report any other crime and not take it down this should happen in the same way. In conclusion, based on my research I feel that Immanuel Kant’s Categorical Imperative theory is important to our society today.

It holds everyone to the same standards! He has help to maintain a set of standards for our society that requires everyone to be treated the same. The study of ethics is important in today’s business and government world because it sets standard for all to abide. From John Locke’s right theory to Kohlberg’s moral development stages. They all 1 / 2 set standards in which business need to stay within.

If there were no standards there would be more scandals in the news than there is. References Britannica. (2014). Immanuel Kant. Retrieved from http://www. philosophypages. com/ph/kant. htm. Keele, Lisa. (2008, The Categorical Imperative of Immanuel Kant. Retrieved from https://www. suite. io/lisa-keele/ypd2fk. Linfold, Paul. (2014, September 28). School Knife Attack Poses Ethical Dilemma For Daily. Retrieved from http://www. holdthefrontpage. co. uk/2014/news/school-knife-attack-poses-ethical- dilemma-for-daily/ POWERED BY TCPDF (WWW. TCPDF. ORG).


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