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Ethical Theories Paper: Consequentialist Theory

1006 words - 4 pages

Consequentialist Theory
SEQ CHAPTER \h \r 1Running head: Ethical Theories Paper: Consequentialist TheoryEthical Theories Paper: Consequentialist TheoryKristen BungeUniversity of PhoenixEthical Theories Paper: Consequentialist Theory"In ethics, the doctrine that actions should be judged right or wrong on the basis of their consequences" (Britannica Concise Encyclopedia, 2008). The consequentialist theory is concerned with the consequences or end result of an action, not the actions involved in obtaining the desired outcome. First one must determine what the best outcome will be. The action that is considered good or morally correct would be the one required to achieve that end result. This theory can then be put into two sub-theories, ethical egoism and "social consequentialism";utilitarianism probably being the most common theory.Ethical egoism is a form of consequentialism that guides an individual to make a decision that benefits themselves the most (Shaver, 2002). This theory can have both good and bad point of views. A person has one life to live and that person should make the most of it, because no one cares about their wellbeing as much as that they do. Although, when it comes to the cost of others, people need to take a step back and look at how their actions are affecting those around them. I recognize that I lived by this theory as a teenager as do many others, always thinking about myself and the steps I had to take to get what I wanted not thinking about the people I was affecting. As I have gotten older I do think more about how my actions may be affecting others around me, but in the workplace you have to sometimes think about yourself to get ahead while trying not to have a negative affect on the other individuals. At the workplace example could include someone calling off of work so they can engage in other activities leaving co-workers to have to take on more responsibility possibly leaving them in an unsafe work environment. Other examples could include women having abortions, because they do not want to settle down and take responsibility for another living person and a person who walks out on their family because they cannot handle the stress.The sub-theory "social consequentialism" is a type of consequentialism that guides people to maximize good consequences and minimize bad ones taking into account the effects on every human-being. This theory can be broken down to two different categories, non-utilitarian and utilitarianism. Some social consequentialists include only effects on humans in their reasoning while others also include effects on non-human such as the effects of cutting down trees on various species and oil spills that occur around the World.Utilitarianism is a consequentialist theory, the theory determines if something is "right" or "wrong" by looking at the consequences that will cause the best outcome for the largest amount of people. "According to the principle of utility, an ethical decision should...

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