There is only one discussion this week. Your instructor will be choosing the discussion question and posting it as the first post in the discussion forum. The requirements for the discussion this week are a minimum of four posts on four separate days. The total combined word count for all of your posts, counted together, should be over 600 words. Be sure to answer all the questions in the prompt and to read any resources that are required to complete the discussion properly. In order to satisfy the posting requirements for the week, please complete your initial post by Day 3 (Thursday) and your other posts by Day 7 (Monday). We recommend that you get into the discussion early and spread out your posts over the course of the week. Be sure to reply to your classmates and instructor. Try to attempt to take the conversation further by examining their claims or arguments in more depth or responding to the posts that they make to you. Keep the discussion on target and try to analyze things in as much detail as you can.
After completing the reading and media for this week, please discuss the following set of questions:
Utilize feminist ethics to examine ONE of the applied ethics topics in the course. To do this, briefly describe the core principles of feminist ethics by using at least one quote from any of the readings for this week. Then, discuss how this core principle would view the applied ethics topic you have chosen. Make sure that your post clearly identifies the core principle, and make sure that you only focus on one of the applied ethics topics. It can be the topic you are using for your final paper, or it can be any of the topics examined in this course such as: end of life care, drones, animal ethics, whistle-blowing, military virtues, environmental issue.
To help focus your post, try to formulate a specific question and then answer it from the point of view of feminist ethics. For example, what does a care ethic look like when applied to business or war? What would be the best way to run a business from the perspective of feminist ethics? How would a feminist ethic transform the way that the military functions or goes about fighting in wars?
(Note: To make sure your post starts its own unique thread, hit the “Respond” button all the above the maroon-colored line.)
In week one of this course we looked at relativism and its core idea that the very ideas of right and wrong are rooted in tradition and cultural heritage. We also saw that a consequence of relativism is its view that there are no objective moral truths — that in effect, the universe is not inherently moral and that morality is a creation of human activity. In the group discussion question in week one, we talked about racism and considered questions about its origin and essence as well as our general moral agreement that racism is morally rephrehensible.
The question of whether morality is the creation of human activity or whether morality as we know it is part of a larger moral fabric in the universe is an important question because so much hinges on its answer — it is, in different words, a question about the fundamental nature of the universe and our place in it.
Utilitarianism seems to avoid asking or answering the question of whether there is a moral fabric in the universe, since one can make all sorts of utilitarian conclusions without needing to address this.
Deontology asserts that the universe is inherently moral and that moral laws exist and can be discovered just as sure as laws of physics and mathematics exist.
While Virtue Ethics does not directly address this question, what we studied about it does assert that virtues, and hence morality, do exist and that they can be acquired and practice and perfected.
When we look at social “progress” over the years — say even in the last half century or so — most of us have the sense that Civil Rights, desegregation and gender equality are good things and that they bring us closer to a just society. To quote Dr. Martin Luther King’s famous words:
“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.”
If there is any truth to our sense that social progress of Civil Rights and gender equality brings us closer to justice, what does this tell us about relativism’s idea that right and wrong are relative to culture?
Do you think morality is entirely the creation of human thought, or do we possess morality because it is part of the created universe?
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