Michael Sandel Video Summary and Analysis Essay

2728 WordsMay 3, 201311 Pages
Michael Sandel Video Summary and Analysis Deirdre Martinez 800047839 Laird Smith CRN 12555 Introduction Michael Sandel has done it again, this time, in his auditorium setting at Harvard University. He invites the public into his undergraduate lecture through the recordings provided online at JusticeHarvard.org. In this work, episode 1 The Moral Side to Murder and episode 2 Putting a Price Tag on Life will be summarized and analyzed as it is also put to use in a local situation. Both of these lectures evolve around one theory: the theory of Utilitarianism. Utilitarianism is basically described as the greatest good for the greatest number. Both episodes…show more content…
What this means is that decisions are made based on the morality in the consequence of the act. With the trolley car, only two options were available: go straight and kill five or steer and kill one. Regardless, one situation was going to occur, that was out of the drivers hands. But which situation would cause lesser damage? With the doctor scenario: let all five patients in need of an organ die, or dissect the perfectly healthy man to save all five? In this case, it would be considered murder. The man in the waiting room had no doing in this situation and would be “morally” wrong to include him as part of the solution in regards to taking his healthy life. Had the consequences not mattered in this scenario, then the idea of categorical moral reasoning would be taking place. Categorical moral reasoning locates morality in certain duties and rights, regardless of the consequences. It is the doctor’s duty to save the five people in need of an organ transplant, regardless that the man in the next room is healthy and has no part in this situation. The most famous categorical philosopher known to our time in Emmanuel Kant, an 18th century political philosopher, as where the doctrine of utilitarianism was invented by Jeremy Bentham, also and 18th century political philosopher. Bentham believed that the right thing to do is to maximize utility. Utility, in Bentham’s ides, was the balance of pleasure over pain and happiness over

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