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Ethics Essay Essay


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There are similarities and differences, which exist between virtue, utilitarianism, and deontological ethical theories. I will provide an explanation of each theory as well as a description of the differences in how each theory addresses ethics and morality. From childhood to adulthood, People have lived through many experiences. I will touch briefly on a personal experience to show the relationship between virtue, values, and moral concepts as they relate to one of the theories.

Beginning with Virtue ethics, “it is also called agent-based ethics.

Its position is that we become good when we cultivate excellence (virtue) by pursuing the moderate course between excess and defect” (Boylan, Pg 208, 2009). An example of this is by saying that a person who has a certain job or career can achieve excellence if he or she make the conscious decision to do what it takes to get there. Utilitarianism defined is “the theory that suggests that an action is morally right when that action produces more total utility for the group as a consequence than any other alternative does.

” Utilitarianism has an individual put the entity before his or herself, for the greater good of the team, work-center, or corporation. By understanding one’s position in that entity, realizing at the moment there is someone better suited to fulfill a task, the utilitarian willingly would offer the task to the more qualified person. The Deontological theory, suggest, “that an agents duty is based up principle.

The theory bases its duties on the nature of human reason or on the nature of human action. It asserts the existence of moral facts and so is a moral realist theory.” An example of this theory would be the actions given to the police force. Policemen have a duty to uphold the law even if it means taking another persons life at will. Usually when warranted, the consequences of taking another persons life are justified by their duty to uphold the law.

Under virtue theory, ethics and morality are addressed by asking how do we determine if a person is good or not. Do we give ourselves time to get to know a person or do we determine the good in a person based on their acts. Is it fair to judge a person on acts alone? Understanding that some individuals may view things different from others describes morality. Morality is addressed by virtue to understand what one person thinks is ethically good or not may not be right or wrong to another. Utilitarianism addresses ethics and morality by placing the good of the group at the forefront. Utilitarianism would be a group of citizens believing in the same goal for the good of the team. For this to exist, each citizen in the group has the same beliefs and look for toward the same outcome. There is no question of right and wrong or the greater good. They all follow a set standard for what they perceive to be the best action for the team.

Deontology Theory addresses ethics and morality by taking the command action as it asks the question, “when does recognition of moral duty begin?” (Boylan, Pg. 173, 2009). The commanding task for this theory applies to those with a duty to act upon. For example, the president of the USA has a duty to protect the nation from all enemies. His position would fall into this theory whereas his personal thinking may be as a utilitarian or of virtue. Based on the position there may be a requirement to fulfill a certain duty under the deontological theory.

A personal experience that I could relate to one of these theories would be the legalization of abortion. Although I believe a person should have the right to an abortion, I do not believe the act itself is right. I also think it depends on the reason. I went through a situation in which a friend was pregnant and did not want to have an abortion, however, chose to do so because of her financial situation. Ethically she made a choice that was hers to do so but the moral to do so was wrong I feel based on her reasoning. Automatically I would say her values to the situation were about herself only and not about what she was destroying.

Comparing the Virtue, Utilitarianism, and Deontology theories provided some similarities and differences. An explanation was given for these theories as well as a description of the ethical and moral differences of each. Last, a personal experience was provided detailing how the relationship between virtue, values, and moral concepts related to the theories.

Boylan, M. (2009). Basic Ethics (2nd ed.). Retrieved from The University of Phoenix eBook Collection database.

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Ethics Essay. (2016, Mar 04). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/ethics-essay


Paper type: Assessment Pages: 3 (505 words)

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            The United States Northern Command (USNORTHCOM) is the combatant command that is responsible for security and defense. They conduct Defense of the Civil authorities through providing capabilities to the DOD, Department of Defense from their land, air and sea components in support of the leading federal policies geared towards responding to any homeland security threat.

            Among the capabilities that the DOD brings to their operations is the ISR and IAA. There is no difference between these two terms only that the term IAA has just been coined by the USNORTHCOM to denote the application of ISR when it is applied domestically to support the homeland security.

The ISR operation mainly consist of flying both manned and unmanned platforms which are set to revolve over the battle field top provide a clear picture of the situation underneath. During the wartime, this picture could include the location of roads and deposition of the enemy and also the information that may be required so as to target the enemy.

ISR provides a clear picture of situational awareness that could not only be used strategically to gain the full picture but also tactically to gather intelligence information that are useful in engaging individual targets. The situation awareness that is provided by the IAA/ ISR becomes a significant force multiplier which the commanders have been known to highly rely on.

            There are many obstacles to realizing full potential for the ISR in homeland security. Currently there is statutory, doctrine, ethical and policy obstacles that exist to prevent ISR from reaching their full capacity for the homeland security provision.

            Improved doctrines will see the department of Defense improve their ability to deliver IAA capabilities to the local, tribal, state and also the federal entities. The consumers all over the country and also the whole world will benefit from improved IAA capabilities.

            The most significant ethical issues come secondarily where IAA capabilities are employed domestically. This is because it is known that all the American citizens enjoy freedoms of privacy, expression and they expect this to be fundamental and be respected in the best way possible. The American citizens highly value their freedoms and hence loath ideas that seem to threaten their constitutional protection.

            In publicizing the use and purpose of IAA, I think there is a big ethical consideration in it because the citizens will get to know the function of IAA and how they function. They will not think that their freedoms are being infringed on but know that this is a military operation and that is how they are and should be carried hence in so doing, there will be no blame game between the government and the citizens.


USAF. (2007). Air Force doctrine document 2-9; Intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance operations. Washington, D.C.: United States Air Force.

Air Forces Northern. (2010). Air Forces Northern incident awareness and assessment playbook. Tyndall AFB, FL: USAF.

USNORTHCOM Public Affairs. (2008, September 18). Hurricane response. Retrieved from United States Northern Command: http://www.northcom.mil/news/2008/091908I.html

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Air Forces Northern incident awareness and assessment playbook. (2015, Oct 28). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/ethics-essay

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