My Personal Ethical Theory

Ethical Scenario #128

A man named John had a wife whose health was declining due to a rare form of cancer. The doctors told him of a medicine that could potentially help her, but would cost thousands of dollars. A druggist nearby was selling this medicine for $2,000. John pleaded with the druggist to sell him the medicine for half the money and he would pay the rest later. The man said no and stated that he reserved the right to sell his medicine for its original price. So John decided to break into his shop and steal the medicine to give to his wife. Did John commit a morally right action?

Before I jump into what I think about this scenario, let me guide you through my personal ethical system/theory. Hopefully this will clear up any misunderstanding there might be when I go over the scenario.

If everyone in the world acted on impulse because they really wanted something, what would the world look like? Moderate how much your feelings take over your actions.

Everyone has inalienable rights to life, respect, happiness, liberty, etc.

If someone did this to me, how would I feel?

Actions always bring consequences-- some good and some not so good. If, however, something goes awry, then your motivation will be considered.

Am I going against what is natural?

Take into account the situation.

John's situation is very sorry indeed, however, that does not nullify all of the possible negative affects his actions bring. In my opinion, if an action can bring about a positive change in a situation and abides by majority (not all) of the guidelines listed above, the action can be considered morally and ethically right. For instance:

(video guiding through the scenario)

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