Utilitarianism, deontology, egalitarianism and libertarianism are all theories of morality. First, the law of greatest happiness is the main ideology behind utilitarianism. Human beings seek to decrease suffering and maximize happiness. Hence, an action that is correct morally must lead to the greatest possible pleasure. This also implies that actions that cause pain on human beings are morally wrong.
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Second, the theory of deontology embraces the concept of duty and adherence to rule. According to the proponents of deontology, actions should fulfill moral duties without caring whether they make people happy, or not. In other words, the theory of deontology holds that duties define right actions, regardless of their consequences.
Third, egalitarianism theory suggests that human beings are all equal in the eyes of God and thus, they should receive similar treatment, regardless of their classes, gender, or other orientations. Fourth, libertarianism emphasizes the need for personal freedom and independence. Aspects such as property rights and patents are highly valued in this theory.
Which of the Theories is Consonant with your World View?
The theory of utilitarianism is consonant with my worldview. Most of its principles such as consideration of the number of happiness recipients and the law of greatest happiness are consistent with my judgments. For instance, if we have two dormitories burning and we just have adequate materials to put off fire in just one dormitory, we should first consider the one with many students. In addition, if we have two consequences and one contains much pleasure than the other, then we should consider the later.
How do you Perceive their Strengths and Possible Weaknesses?
The theories mentioned above have some strengths and possible weaknesses. First, the main strengths of utilitarianism theory include simplicity, explanatory power, clarity and internal coherence (Bykvist 22). The theory explains aspects such as value, alternative actions, well-being and consequences.
Thus, it is a specific moral theory that has apparent inferences for all moral choice solutions, given right information. Besides, the theory consists of just one basic moral principle and therefore does not have the complexity of pluralistic theories, which explain diverse principles.
Therefore, hardly experience conflict since there are no many principles. In addition, the array of actions pointed out by utilitarianism is huge It gives normative conditions of wrongness, or rightness to all alternatives in all choice circumstances, together with new choice circumstances that we had earlier not thought-out as serious likelihoods. Lastly, utilitarianism is rationally coherent (Bykvist 22). Under no circumstance does the theory say that an action is both right and wrong.
On the other hand, utilitariasm has a weakness in that it lacks emotional attachment. For instance, the theory does not address morality from a personal viewpoint. Rather, it addresses issues from the outside. Besides, the theory lacks a clear way of measuring the goodness of a consequence. Hitherto, there lacks a common scale for measuring goodness as the concept is very dynamic.
Second, deontology has strengths in its simplicity and specific nature. It is easy to know whether a person complies with pre-set rules. Such rules are usually specific in regard to conduct. However, deontology does not validate the authority of rules. Besides, deontology is susceptible to incoherence through conflicts and oppositions, since it does not consider consequences of actions.
Third, egalitarianism has clear values about equality and likeable outcomes (Rasmussen 89). However, the idea of equality among persons is not practical considering human history and attitudes of people towards the concept. For instance, if an average egalitarian receives a request to donate his blood to either an ordinary citizen, or a film star, it is obvious that the later will benefit. Besides, the theory does not consider the context for equality (Rasmussen 89).
Lastly, libertarianism has a weakness in that it promotes individual above all other values (Shaw 102). Besides, the theory holds that a person should not forfeit individual freedom in the quest for other values. For instance, decency, empathy, justice, respect, and even survival of the underprivileged should not take precedence over individual freedom I many occasions, this prejudice results in extreme situations.
For instance, if a supermarket catches fire the same time with the house of a rich man, the theory requires firefighters to take care of the rich man first in pursuit of individual rights. In such a circumstance, the value of securing the lives of a crowd of people locked up in a supermarket simply does not count when weighed against slight infractions against the freedom of a wealthy individual.
Do you Sense that there Might be yet Another Way, one that we Have Not Discussed?
We have not discussed about virtual theory. The theory explains that virtues and vices of a person define what is morally right, or wrong. The theory also describes the meaning of living well, for human kind. It considers the result of human existence as eudaimonia. The meaning of eudaimonia is flourishing. That is, human beings wish to live well. However, this theory does not refer to physical happiness, but that of the mind and soul.
Aristotle divides virtues into the intellectual and moral virtues, which correspond to the happiness of the mind and soul. He considers virtue as a moral tendency of the mind, which occurs as voluntary action. Moral virtue controls the actions of the emotional part. On the other hand, the intellectual virtue determines suitable actions for particular feelings. According to the theory, greatest happiness can only come from philosophical reflection.
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Bykvist, Krister. Utilitarianism : A Guide for the Perplexed. New York: Continuum, 2010. Print.
Rasmussen, Kasper. Deontology, Responsibility, and Equality. Copenhagen: Dept. of Media, Cognition and Communication, Univ. of Copenhagen, 2005. Print.
Shaw, William H. Business Ethics. Boston, MA: Wadsworth, 2011. Print.