Professional Ethics: An Analysis

1199 Words 5 Pages
Many argue whether or not the teaching of professional ethics actually makes an impact on professionals today. Banks McDowell explains in his article that due to a consistently growing lapse in moral integrity, caused by market pressure and the growing bureaucratic system in professional work, the increased teaching of professional ethics is in fact futile due to the overwhelming pressure placed on people and business in this system. In this paper I will be evaluating the statement made by Banks McDowell, "Until we deal more forthrightly with the existence of a ready and acceptable set of excuses the current emphasis on professional ethics will remain largely a public relations gambit rather than a real improvement in professional integrity" …show more content…
81-82). Due to the division of labor, when there are lapses in ethics, the blame is passed around to the other contributors on that project or activity. This excuse is one that is harder to negate due to most people believing that the fault is not their own, and harder to correct due to the communal nature allowing people to feel as though they are not the problem. The third excuse in McDowell’s article, is known as the fault of machines, in which a maintenance problem occurred with a piece of machinery causing failure. and therefore a lapse in either productivity or care (McDowell, pg 83). Some people argue that this should be corrected by the professionals who operate these machines, but this is a difficult task to ask of them due to the increased complexity of the machinery that they are working with(pg. 83). This causes it to be difficult to place the blame of ethical lapses caused mechanical failure to be placed on any individual or small group. McDowell’s fourth excuse is the fallibility of human beings, which is understood by the idea that no one is perfect (pg …show more content…
I think that this is a difficult reality to accept, but is the only acceptable reality to realize if we wish to create any kind of coherent change in the shortcomings of the current professional world. The only way that professional ethics courses will hold any merit is if the entire professional system were to be changed so as to stop resisting blame while simultaneously allowing for an avenue of acceptance to adaptation. This will only be possible if the majority of professionals in any given field were to realize that there is a problem with the current system, and band together to figure out a way to rectify it. Considering the likelihood of that happening being low, McDowell is right with the claim "Until we deal more forthrightly with the existence of a ready and acceptable set of excuses the current emphasis on professional ethics will remain largely a public relations gambit rather than a real improvement in professional integrity," (McDowell, p.

Related Documents

Related Topics