Explore BrainMass

Utilitarianism theory of ethics

Is utilitarianism theory of ethics popular? why or why not?

If one had a tendency to favor utilitarianism theory of ethics (The greatest good for the greatest number), determine the following as ethical or unethical practices based on utilitarianism theories. Be sure to provide some citations as well with your descriptive responses:

Capital punishment
Company e-mail for personal use
Using the Company copy machine to print the E-text
Drug testing
Personal use of an company-issued cell phone

Solution Preview

Let me see if I can't offer you some direction. The citations you should provide from your copy of the text, and perhaps your prof. also wants some real life examples. I would recommend, if that is the case, that you look at the Supreme Court's ruling in Gregg vs. Georgia, as they reveal a partly utilitarian approach to the question of "evolving" societal values regarding the death penalty. In addition, you could look at Van den Haag and Pojman, both of whom discuss the utilitarian approach to favoring the death penalty. Van den Haag introduces the "best bet" theory of capital punishment, in which he argues the death penalty is a better bet than not, since it prevents the possibility of future crimes ...