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Kantian Ethics Essay

1698 words - 7 pages

In society, morality is defined as the beliefs and ideas of what is right or wrong behaviour. (Can you cite a dictionary?) The teachings of morality also known as moral education is heavily dependent on individuals that have a major impact on one`s life. The teachings usually start from a young age through parents, caregivers and educators in society. Due to their influence on young children`s lives it is their responsibility to make certain that young children will learn to make logical decisions that would contribute in a positive way in society. An ethical theory that would best describe people that influence young children would be Kantian`s ethics. His ethical theory elucidates that morality is when we act based on duty for duty`s sake not for self-interest. For this reason in order to respect the law, a sense of duty to one`s actions is necessary (Kant, 287). Based on this analysis, young children would need Kant`s outlook on morality in order to be sufficient in society. In this paper, I will argue that we as moral agents have a sense of duty to educate young children on how they should act by allowing them to reason and make rational decisions in society. In order to do this, educators which includes parents and caregivers, must teach young children the true purpose of good will based on Kantian ethics. Secondly, educators must instruct young children on how to implement policies, which Kant refers to as maxims, which are universal (Kant, 287). This concept is based on Kant`s principle of universal law. Lastly, based on Kant`s principle of humanity, children would be able to acknowledge that treating others as ends is preferred instead of as mere means. Both principles are a part of what Kant would call the Categorical imperative (Kant, 285). Duty is formed from the categorical imperative, therefore when all of these implications are considered; moral agents would willingly educate young children to make appropriate laws as lawgivers in society.
First of all, Kantian`s ethics is based on the notion that we must act based on a sense of duty and in order to do so we must look at what is good. The reason for this is to understand that what people in society as a whole would consider to be good without limitation. According to Kant, the thing that is considered to be good without limitation is good will. He believed that good will is something that human beings intrinsically want to strive for. In order to produce good will, individuals must reason. According to Kant, to be perfectly rational is to be perfectly moral. Therefore if one is without the basic principle of good will one can become incredibly evil which would make dangerous and more abominable in our eyes (Kant, 283). In other words, young children need understand the concept of good will and how reason is a must to in order to be rational. Therefore by teaching young children how to reason to make rational decisions, the principle of good will must be accredited, which is...

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