Utilitarianism, And Immanuel Kant's Theory Of Morality
Was his lie just? To evaluate this question I would rely on two contradicting approaches to justice: the utilitarianism philosophy that aims to maximize happiness, and Immanuel Kant's (1724 – 1804) categorical imperative, that respect people as rational being capable of acing from duty. I will argue that lying to the Vichy authorities was the right thing to do because the value of life is higher than the duty not to lie. I will defend this argument by one the critiques on Kant's philosophy.
The goal of Kant's moral philosophy is to find a categorical, unconditional imperative that will enable the creation of universal laws of nature, legislated by rational and free beings. The categorical imperative is formal, while the substance is decided by the person. As long as the motive can be …show more content…
The moral worth of an action is measured in the intention. If the intention was right the action is just, regardless to the consequences. Further, he argues there is no such thing as a moral act without a good principle who guided it. Though, while good will is necessary, Kant make another distinction between good will that comes from our senses, to an act from a sense of duty. While the former is lesser because it means that we did not fully freely choose to act upon it, the latter is the one we should aspire to. That is because, only when we act from a free rational decision, according to a law that we feel obliged to follow, our action have moral quality (as cited in Sandel, 2009,