Moral Theories

Moral Theories

Student’s Name

Institution of Affiliation


Question 1:

According to utilitarianism, an action is considered morally right if it brings the greatest pleasure to the greatest number of people. Based on the situation, killing the family will only result in pleasure to the Nazi captain, which means that the action will be morally wrong (Eggleston, 2020). Therefore, based on utilitarianism, the captain should deny transporting any Jews in his boat as this will satisfy the Nazi captain and leave the boat captain and the Jewish family alone. By doing this, the boat captain will have done the right thing according to utilitarianism as all parties will have to live, which is the greatest pleasure for the family and the captain. However, Kantian ethics states that do the right thing because it is the right thing to do, which means that the captain should say ‘yes’ as it is true he is smuggling some jews. The reason behind this is because if he denies smuggling any jews and the Nazi captain decides to search the board and kills the jews; the deaths would be his fault for not telling the truth. If I were in that situation, I would deny smuggling Jews in the boat to preserve the Jews’ lives (Korsgaard, 2020).

Question 2:

Tracy Latimer’s death was a relief to the family due to her condition. She was not going to have a normal life, and this means that she would have still be a burden to her family even later in her old age. According to Mrs. Latimer, she was relieved to find her daughter dead and stated that she did not have the courage to do it herself, which means that given a chance, she could have done it. Based on utilitarianism, Mr. Latimer’s actions were morally justified as his actions resulted in the greatest pleasure to the family and reduced suffering from Tracy (Eggleston, 2020). Based on this, I do agree with the judge’s sentence to a one-year sentence in that even if he murdered her daughter, it was considered second-degree murder, and since Tracy’s death was satisfactory to the family, it could have inflicted more pain than pleasure to the family. It was also the right thing for the judge to do. However, I don’t agree with the Supreme Court’s decision in that Tracy was a burden to the family, as she could never have a normal life. As a result, imposing the mandatory sentence that had previously been rejected by a judge resulted in more pain than pleasure, which is against the concept of utilitarianism.


Eggleston, B. (2020). Consequentialism and Respect: Two Strategies for Justifying Act Utilitarianism. Utilitas, 32(1), 1-18.

Korsgaard, C. (2020). Kant’s analysis of obligation: The argument of Groundwork I. In Immanuel Kant: Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals in focus (pp. 121-153). Routledge.

Moral Theories

*Discussion: Which theory of moral justification do you believe is the most pragmatic? Cite several examples to support your position. You may also make assertions as to the short comings of the philosophies that you did not choose to reinforce your argument.

*Required Text book:
Principles of Biomedical Ethics. 7th edition.
ISBN# 978-0-19-992458-5
Chapter 9.

*Please follow the instructions carefully. (see attached file)

*Please include the subject line as follow:
Cardinal Rule #2: You are required to create a Subject Line for your discussion posts that conveys the main point of your message.
It is not enough to use just a “keyword” or “key phrase” as your subject – you must create a short sentence (a complete sentence with subject – verb – predicate, but no more than about 10 words) which summarizes the main point you are making in your message.

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