Assignment: Unit 5 Individual Project – Deontological Ethics
|Read the following article by Jay Feldman and answer the questions that follow:
There was a time in the not so distant past when many, if not most, publicly held corporations, including the one for which I worked, embraced in their mission statements, codes of conduct and similar pronouncements a responsibility to serve multiple stakeholders: their stockholders, of course, but also their employees as well as customers, suppliers and the community in which they operated. Today, all too many companies, in deed and often in word, articulate a single-minded obligation to serve only their investors by focusing exclusively on profitability.
As a result, we have witnessed corporate downsizings and outsourcing of jobs; restructuring of pension plans or their complete termination; reductions in health care benefits; and wage stagnation in spite of increased productivity. Domestic suppliers have been squeezed or, more often, replaced by cheap foreign sources. Customers seeking service are confronted with automated answering machines and foreign call centers. Environmental concerns are viewed as obstacles to profitability.
At the same time, the senior managers of these enterprises have seen their compensation grow exponentially as a reward for their perceived contributions to the bottom line.
Sadly, what these corporations fail to appreciate is how their obsession with the bottom line is shrinking their markets, both domestic and foreign. The large number of people unemployed, underemployed, afraid of losing their jobs or without the means to pay all their bills perpetuates the present worldwide economic crisis.
Add to this the unwillingness of businesses to pay their fair share of taxes to support education, health care and the infrastructure that is critical to their success. In the end, these self-serving practices endanger the very profitability their practitioners seek to enhance.
We need to return to the earlier model of the corporation as a good citizen. Doing so can help ensure the long-term viability of our free enterprise system.
JAY N. FELDMAN
Port Washington, N.Y., Aug. 27, 2012
The writer is a retired corporate lawyer.
Considering the passage above, write a paper of 3–4 pages that addresses the following:
Consider deontological ethics, teleological ethics, moral objectivism, and ethical relativism in your argument. Provide at least 3 valid reasons to support your argument. Also, be sure to include the following in your paper:
Identify your argument—or thesis statement—within the introduction of your paper.
Include definitions of utilitarianism, Categorical Imperatives, Process Philosophy, moral relativism, moral absolutism, ethical relativism, moral objectivism, deontological ethics, and teleological ethics.
Consider morality and ethics from the perspective of Alfred North Whitehead’s process philosophy, and Immanuel Kant’s universal categorical imperative. Could you argue that Businesses can have ethical standards, despite the fact that Businesses are not moral agents? Why or why not? Please explain.
Distinguish between descriptive and normative definitions of morality
Please submit your assignment.
For assistance with your assignment, please use your text, Web resources, and all course materials.
Feldman, J. (2012, August 27). Sunday Dialogue: How Corporations Behave. The New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/02/opinion/sunday/sunday-dialogue-how-corporations-behave.html?ref=ethics
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Important information on Writing a Discussion Question
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I understand this is a lot of information to cover in 5 weeks, however, the Bible says in Philippians 4:13 that we can do all things through Christ that strengthens us. Even in times like this, we are encouraged by God’s word that we have that ability in us to succeed with His strength. I pray that each and every one of you receives strength for this course and life generally as we navigate through this pandemic that is shaking our world today. Relax and enjoy the course!