What Makes An Issue A Moral Issue Philosophy
Have you ever wondered if the choices you make in life are the right ones? Not just for the people around you but for your own mental health. Merriam Webster defines (Moral): "of or relating to principles of right and wrong in behavior." Who is to say that the justifications of your actions are due to your warped morals and another man's point of view? Perhaps the person or groups who have a different belief then your own are the immoral ones. If they refused to hear your reasoning just because of a grudge or their opinion of you that would make them the immoral party. If you open up the newspaper or watch a news program nearly every article or segment will involve some type of moral issue. From Abortion and Stem cells to War and Legislation what factors should we consider and how should we think. Dose everyone agree with the universal point of view? Would every onlooker come to the same conclusion and make the same consensus about all of life's difficult situations?
To make an issue a moral issue it must deal with some form of equality. An unwritten code of conduct or "rule of thumb" that all societies should live by. How one justifies their actions that may affect another person. To decipher the facts of a situation there are five different approaches that can be taken to help answer the question of morality. The first is the Utilitarian approach. The first task would to be to identify the different courses of action that can be taken and find out who will be affected by the greatest benefit and the least harm. The most ethical action sounds very similar to "sacrifice one to save the many." The next approach would be the Rights approach. The difference humans have from objects is we have feelings and a survival instinct. The ability to choose ones path and make a decision based on what you think is right and satisfactory. Your decision process can be justified by choosing the best path for your core group "your wolf pack," opposed to the greatest number of people. This gives the individual's the right to choose. The third approach is known as the Justice approach. It asks what is fair in life. Are we held to the same standard and judged based on our merit and performance. To use this approach there must be some set of standards be it workforce, education or social. A great example that can be used for all three situations is hard work and sacrifice. That in turn naturally brings pay raises, good grades and more meaningful friendships in a normal society setting. The fourth approach is the Common Good approach. The process behind this approach is that the good of one's community is linked to the individuals own good. They are bound by the pursuit of common values and goals. World peace and affordable health care are two examples of this unified approach at an ethical action. The fifth and final approach at answering the question of equality is the Virtue approach. The actions we have should stay consistent with the traits of our character. A morally sound person would have admirable qualities and righteousness therefore the decisions they make will always follow the "straight and narrow." The path every free thinker should travel.
These approaches suggest that once all of the facts have been discovered and reviewed we can take several different approaches at analyzing the world around us an forming a conclusion based on facts and what is right in your mind in normal society setting and how would you react to a situation. Say you committed an act of murder and will be receiving the death penalty. You had the choice to save yourself with no repercussions and would serve a life sentence instead. You knew you were going to commit a crime and shot the victim cold blood. Could you take the Rights approach? "I have the right to live my life the way I want. Make my own decisions and live with them." Perhaps the Common Good approach, "I choose to kill myself to lessen the burden of the taxpayer and help bring closure to the victim's family. You're going to kill me because everyone will benefit." The Utilitarian approach loosely reads "sacrifice one to save the many." What is the greatest good with the least burden? "I don't want to die but a jury of my peers has found me guilty and I was sentenced to death because I could kill again." The Justice approach treats all those equally and regardless of the verdict the same sentence would be received for all similar crimes. The Virtue approach to the situation would be acceptance if the murder had any remorse for the crime. "I acted in a way not consistent with a good moral principle." When using these approaches to answer what makes an issue a moral issue you also answer the question of how actions are morally justified. If you can explain with sufficient reason why you displayed your right and wrong behavior that is all the justification anyone would need to form an opinion on the situation. Irregaurdless of the situation and explanation there will always be head butting and a different view of morality after all we're only human.