Book Review: How Godd People Make Tough Choices Essay

1055 Words Oct 27th, 2012 5 Pages
Book Review:
HOW GOOD PEOPLE MAKE TOUGH CHOICES

This book is aimed at helping people make ethical choices, through a readable mixture of analysis, guidance, and case studies. It was easy for me to identify with the case studies.
The basic premise is that tough choices revolve not around questions of right vs. wrong rather tough choices revolve around questions of right vs. right.
Based on study of thousands of real ethical dilemmas, Kidder presents four ethical paradigm pairs: Truth vs. loyalty Individual vs. community

Short-term vs. long-term Justice vs. mercy

For a given ethical dilemma, there is usually a dominant pair. Frequently, more than one must be considered, and sometimes all four. But, as Kidder
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What would be your response if a decision made in private suddenly became public? This is a test of your social mores.
3. The Sgt test: “If I were my Sgt, what would I do?” or “If Sgt. knew about this, what would he/she think?” This is about the moral exemplar who cares deeply about you and means a great deal to you. Put yourself in another’s shoes and think about what you are on the verge of doing. It might well be wrong.
All these fall into the category of Moral Temptation, or Right vs. Wrong.
Ethical Dilemmas

1. Truth vs. Loyalty: Truth, for most people, is conformity with facts or reality. Loyalty involves allegiance to a person, corporation or body of people, a government, or set of ideas to which one owes fidelity. It is right to stand on truth. It is right to be loyal.
2. Individual vs. Community: Individualism assumes that in a society where each person vigorously pursues his own interests, the social good would automatically emerge. As such, the rights of the individual are to be preserved. By “community” it is meant that the needs of the majority outweigh the interests of the individual. Communities speak to us in a moral voice. They lay claims on their members. It is right to consider the individual. It is right to consider the community.
3. Short-Term vs. Long-Term: Short-term concerns are usually associated with the satisfaction of current needs in

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