Consequentialism And Deontological Ethics

1308 Words 5 Pages
A simplified definition of consequentialism is such that, morality and normative behavior are based solely on the consequences an action produces. When scrutinizing the arguments for consequentialism however, none seem to hold fast without significant reason to doubt. The consequence is not the only thing important in determining the obligatory act as far as morality is concerned. Deontological ethics presents a stronger argument with less ambiguity, vagueness, and provides several theories that follow closer with our intuitions. Even though consequences have a lasting effect on our lives, they do not have the final word in determining moral acts. Consequentialism would seem intuitive to many people because promoting the best consequence, …show more content…
The unforeseen consequences, as well as the consequences that cannot be ascertained could make an action as simple as tying your shoes wrong one day morally apprehensible given their disastrous results. Could it be that what is important to morality is striving to do what would produce the best results? If so there is something other than consequence that is important in determining the obligatory act. If it is motives that drive our moral compass, we would be following closer to a deontology. Another drawback to consequentialism is that we have no way of fully measuring the given virtue of a situation. If one were to exploit people, creating positive consequences to himself and minimal negative consequences to those he exploited, how can we criticize this? It seems as though the exploiter has done nothing wrong. Deontological ethics are typically clearer about what expectations they hold on the individual. In this case it looks like there is something other than the consequences that are important in determining the right course of …show more content…
The evaluators of the situation could go further to say that after the murderer robbed the bank, if ten years later he anonymously donated the money to the families of the deceased, it may be more morally praiseworthy than roller coaster engineer. But all of this seems to go against our moral intuitions, it seems like a murderer should be condemned while the engineer at most fined or fired. Although some proponents of consequentialism state that consequentialist theories follow our intuition, given these examples it seems as though they fight against them. Are consequences the only things that matter as far as morality is concerned? If so, following this could even go as far as to convince people one is an immoral person. As Dr. William Haines

Related Documents