Using theories to assess ethical issues


Write a five page paper assessing one of the issues discussed in the textbooks and in class from the perspective of each of the three approaches to ethics identified by Michael Sandel. Identify the strengths and weaknesses of each approach, consider them carefully, and make a case for which has the strongest or most persuasive argument.

A successful paper will accomplish the following: 1. Clearly indicate the one topic or question you have chosen and an appreciation of what is at stake in the issue; topics you might choose include those we cover in class:

• whether torture is morally permissible • the most ethical means to form a military (draft/conscription vs. volunteer/market) • if surrogate motherhood is morally permissible • whether it is ethical to tax citizens to provide social services that benefit the poor • whether affirmative action ought to be a criterion in school admissions • what sort of accommodations ought to be made for the disabled in athletics • whether an ethical society would permit or forbid same-sex marriage If you have a different question or issue you wish to consider, be sure to consult with me first.

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