Importance Of Ethical Theories

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Ethical Theory Introduction The word ‘ethics’ derives from the Greek word ethos i.e. a custom, habit or disposition. Ethics offer a system of moral principles that affect how people make decisions and live their lives. The origin of ethics may be based in religions, philosophies and/or cultures. Ethical principles provide a moral map for examining ethical dilemmas surrounding people (BBC). The study of investigating the origins and meanings of ethical principles is known as metaethics. Given the significance of metaethics as a birds-eye view of ethical practices (Audi), it is important to familiarize with the different ethical philosophies falling under its realm and their implications on decision-making. Ethical Theories Philosophers have…show more content…
Sometimes during ethical arguments, it becomes very difficult to make progress because people seem to go round and round, unable to reach a decision. This lack of understanding and empathy directly results from the use of different ethical theories by different individuals. Undoubtedly, the assumptions and implications of metaethics involve reflecting on the beliefs and commitments of those engaging in moral thought, talk and practice. Thus, metaethics offers a critical neutral ground for assessing competing moral views…show more content…
Thus, ethical thinking provides people with a moral framework to work through their ethical dilemmas (Pecorino). For example, consider the case of Mr. Smith who has been in an irreversible coma for a long time. He has no immediate family and the decision to take him off life support depends upon the doctors. Ethical frameworks guide the doctors to make a decision in a seemingly impossible situation where a person’s life is balanced with his suffering and the hospital’s resources. From a moral non-realistic perspective, is it morally justifiable to end his suffering by taking him off life support? It depends upon the culture and beliefs of the people involved. The doctors can argue that mercy killing allows Mr. Smith to die with dignity, rather than force him to continue his life and let him experience the deterioration of his organs. Therefore, in this case euthanasia is permitted, according to moral non-realists because it is best for the

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