Deontology Vs Utilitarianism

2440 Words10 Pages
Comparing one ethical methodology to another seems almost like trying to balance several buckets of water that are all leaking at different rates. All of them have certain appeals that seem to lend themselves to certain situations. The question of whether we should always act in our own interest, ethical egoism, or act in the interest of the greatest good, utilitarianism, presents two conflicting viewpoints in consequentialism. Rule deontology and act deontology add another dichotomy to our list. An atheist and a Christian cannot both be correct under Divine Command Theory, a moral system under rule deontology. By not believing in the Christian God, the atheist is committing blasphemy in the eyes of the Christian. Immanuel Kant’s Duty Ethics…show more content…
It is indeed the focus on consequences that leads to this failure. But what if consequences were removed from the moral system. Deontology, a school of thought based on nonconsequentialism, focuses on duties, or basic standards of right or wrong, in lieu of the consequences. Deontology, like Utilitarianism, can be broken into two categories: Act and Rule. Similar to its Utilitarian form, Act Deontology has no grounds in rules or moral standards. Instead it focuses on the feelings and intuitions of the individual in a particular situation. The problem lies in intuition itself. Intuition differs from person to person and therefore cannot be objectively debated upon. How can it be proven that intuition even exists, and if it does, what if an individual lacks moral intuition and must base his or hers upon someone else’s? At this point Act Deontology breaks down or begins to take the form of Rule…show more content…
Under any moral system, there can and likely will be immoral people. Particularly when the immoral individual is knowingly acting in the wrong, they cannot be forced to change by an external factor. Repeat offenders, for example, have been reprimanded for whatever crime they have committed; yet they continue to take immoral action. In contrast, other criminals may realize their previous actions were immoral and choose to change for the better. This self-improvement is Virtue Ethics in action. The crime that was committed, a broken rule, and the consequences that followed as a result of the crime exist, but with Virtue Ethics there is still time for personal growth in the present and future. Individual self-improvement being the center of Virtue Ethics allows the personal freedom required for humans to prosper in a diverse society, and the development of peace and harmony between individuals based upon sincerely good actions. Therefore, it is Virtue Ethics that provides humans with the most well fitting moral

More about Deontology Vs Utilitarianism

Open Document