The strengths and contributions in Kant’s theory include: 1) he marks a distinction between duty and inclination to make clear that morality is more than personal preference, 2) counters the “utilitarian presumption that the punishment of the innocent can be justified if the majority benefit” (no discrimination), 3) gives humans intrinsic worth as the rational high point of creation. The distinction between moral and inclination is that moral actions have to be nether self contradictory and universal. An example of duty is the prima face duties, such as fidelity, gratitude, and justice, proposed by W.D. Ross. One noteworthy strength of Kant’s theory is that it is good for both believers and non-believers of God and it opposes human lives as a means to the end. A morally good man needs to have good will and fulfils his duty. Kant’s ethical theory is based on duty as we ought to act morally as to do our duty- to obey the moral law. There is simply no room for feelings, inclination, love or occasion when related to moral decisions. Kant’s emphasis on our duty is similar and can be treated as compatible with the Ten Commandments in Christianity as its believers’ moral duty is to obey the Ten Commandments. Kant’s theory of ethics rejects utilitarianism, the “doctrine that actions are right if they are useful or for the benefit of a majority,” which grants more fairness towards the
Immanuel Kant is said by many to be one of the most influential “thinkers” in the history of Western philosophy (McCormick, n.d.), this being said, most of his theories continue to be taught and are highly respected by society. Kant was a firm believer that the morality of any action can be assessed by the motivation behind it (McCormick, n.d.). In other words, if an action is good but the intention behind the action is not good, the action itself would be considered immoral. Those who follow the utilitarian view would disagree, arguing that an action which benefits the most number of people would be considered moral regardless of the intentions behind it. Kant argues that the intention behind an action matters more than the number of people benefited. This theory of morality falls hand in hand with Kant 's concept of good will, and through examples I hope to explain to readers, in a simple way, what Kant was trying to convey.
Kant develops a principle that we must follow in order to act morally. He explains that we have a duty to act morally. Duties as described by Kant “are rules of some sort combined with some sort of felt constraint or incentive on our choices, whether from external coercion by others or from our own powers of reason.” He calls this overall principle the categorical imperative and it is the fundamental principle of our moral duties. All of our moral actions should follow and should be justified by the categorical imperative, and this means that all
The maxim has to be consistent and able to be applied to every situation, for every person. The other main point of Kantian moral theories are the differences between imperfect and perfect duties. Perfect duties are those duties that one must always perform in a particular situation, whereas imperfect duties are those that one must perform only when the situation arises.
Another topic that Kant contributed to is morality. According to Kant, moral laws cannot be derived from human nature. To put it in other terms, it is not human nature that should be used as a model to how we should behave morally. Kant believed that humans do not always make the right moral decisions because human nature can be flawed at times, often times choosing an animalistic desire over doing something that is morally permissible. In addition, Kant believed that the outcome of human nature is not the central issue when it comes to knowing what is right or what is wrong. Instead, Kant believes that it each of the individual actions that should be analyzed to see if it is morally wrong or if it is morally right. Kant’s point of view about morality is different from previous philosophers, because most of them looked to human nature in order to find the morally right things to do.
Immanuel Kant's categorical imperative is a theory that basically relays the same message that most mothers teach their kids, and that is to do the right thing. The categorical imperative could be easily explained by the Golden Rule about treating others as you would like to be treated. Kant dives a little deep with his theory, however, and breaks the categorical imperative into three formulations. The first formulation is about essentially removing yourself from a situation and doing what is best for everyone. Kant is basically saying that it is unethical to make decisions that affect everyone, but only benefits you. The second formulation is about making sure that
First, all individuals do have a duty to what is right, whether they act accordingly or not. All citizens are held to a duty to uphold the laws, if there was no duty then laws would not exist. Morality coincides with being loyal to the laws, being a disciplined person, and living an orderly life. These essentials are all present in Kant’s perception of duty.
Kant’s first proposition is an action has moral worth only if it is done out of duty, such as when someone who has absolutely no interest in donating to the poor does so out of duty. His second proposition is that action has moral worth not because of its aim, but because of the maxim on which it is based, meaning that it would not matter if the intent failed, as long as the principle was good. His third proposition is that duty is the necessity of an action from respect for the law, such as if an individual is in an embarassing spot, they could will the lie, but not will the maxim to lie. Kant argues that everything is secretly done in self benefit, an example can be an individual helping another merely for the fulfilled feeling.
Emmanuel Kant has three propositions of morality. One of the propositions is that in order to have moral worth, an action must be from a moral duty. The second proposition is that “action whether the action is in accord with duty has been done from duty or from some selfish purpose is easy”(Cahn 76). The third proposition is that “action accord with duty and the subject has in addition an immediate inclination to do the action”(Cahn 76). Each one of the propositions has a different distinct and they are connected to morality. There are several actions that can be done out of duty, while others can be done out of desire. Each one of these two are used to determine if it’s done in a moral way. Kant gives two examples, one example is about a self-interested shopkeeper and the other is a reluctant benefactor. In the self-interested shop keeper, the dealer is focused on having fixed prices for everyone. He needs the customers to keep coming
Duty for Kant is the underlying role of morality. Our duty and intentions combine to form our will, and the only one thing in the world that is good is a good will. To act according to duty means we are acting according to principals, not according to the final outcome of our actions. Principals is another important factor in this theory, our actions must be congruent with principals that can be made universal. To be universal, the maxim must apply to absolutely everyone, everywhere, and anytime. Another stipulation in Kant’s theory is that we should never treat a person solely as a means to our own ends. It is morally wrong to use someone solely to enhance our own self-interest.
7. Kant’s ethics gives us firm standards that do not depend on results; it injects a humanistic element into moral decision making and stresses the importance of acting on principle and from a sense of duty. Critics, however, worry that (a) Kant’s view of moral worth is too restrictive, (b) the categorical imperative is not a sufficient test of right and wrong, and (c) distinguishing between treating people as means and respecting them as ends in themselves may be difficult in practice.
“There is no possibility of thinking of anything at all in this world, or even out of it, which can be regarded as good without qualifications, except a good will.” (Kant, pg.7 393). No other thing that may appear good can be unqualifiedly good, as even “Talents of the mind…Gifts of power…[Other] qualities…Have no intrinsic unconditional worth, but they always presuppose, rather, a good will, which restricts the high esteem in which they are otherwise rightly held.” (Kant, pg.7 393-394). So Immanuel Kant introduces the public to his Grounding for the Metaphysics of Morals, which results not in simply a grounding work, but one that is utterly groundbreaking. This opener, wholly devoted to the establishment of the importance of will and intention, notes the guiding characteristics of a good will. As enumerated previously, Kant recognizes the plausible potential positivity of plenty concepts, but remains of the mind that none of these are good in themselves without the efforts of a good will to guide and restrict them in a manner that perpetuates their positivity.
Engineers are trusted individuals which the public has set high standards for. The public relies on engineers to efficiently, and accurately determine the safety of all products they create. Engineers are required to follow safety procedures in order to ensure the quality of the products they create. However, are these procedures enough to ensure the safety of the public? Or can additional actions be taken in order to improve the safety of a product? If so, to what extent should engineers be required to take matters into their own hands and ensure the safety of products, in return reducing the number of injuries and fatal accidents?
According to principle of universalism moral duty of a person could be revealed through reasons, objectively. Kant said that to act morally is one’s moral duty and one’s moral duty is to follow innate law.
Kantian ethics emphasizes on two conditions for an action to be morally good. The first, that an action only has moral worth if it is done for the sake of duty. The second is that an action is considered right if its maxim can be willed as a universal law. Kantian ethics then is working on the basis of duty and universality. In failing to recognize the multiple aspects of morality, Kantian ethics shows inadequacy as a moral theory. (Hinman, 2008)