Weston's Ethical Theory

866 Words4 Pages
In the book A Practical Companion to Ethics, Weston describes the three most popular ethical theories: The Ethics of Happiness, The Ethics of the Person, and The Ethics of Virtue. After studying the different approaches and discussing them in class, I have found I resonate the most with the Ethics of a Person. I have found this theory emphasizes the importance of human personality and equality, and asks us to treat others as such rather than objects. I interpreted the theory to mean that we all born the same and have the same worth, no matter how different we are individually. It asks us to be aware of each person's unique beauty, and to treat them respectfully, as you would like to be respected in return. The more mutual respect that is created…show more content…
He was able to appeal to the morals of millions in the country, by forcing them to understand that black people are just as human as white, with emotions and personalities, who deserved justice. People are more than their labels, and we should not be defined by our race, gender, or social class, but how we treat others. This theory appealed to me personally, because I feel it is the most true, realistic, and practical theory that we can apply to our lives. People share different values and virtues, and we all have a different definition of what makes us happy, but we can all acknowledge everyone’s individuality and still treat them with respect. I have found myself in situations, especially in the workplace where people have treated me as a machine for their food rather than a person who is sensitive to insult. If we were all less self-centered, and more mindful of others feelings, there would be less hurt in the world. According to Kant’s idea, humans should not be treated as “means to an end”, but rather as “ends in themselves” (Weston p.51). We should not use one another to help ourselves, rather to see them as individuals that can help each…show more content…
As Westion points out, prisons have become “understaffed, overcrowded, violent schools for crime and brutalization” (p.78), in which punishment is prioritized over rehabilitation. There is clearly an issue with the justice system considering that the vast majority of inmates end up returning. I believe that if the Ethics of a Person was applied more in prison, many inmates would have more hope and drive to make the correct changes in their lives. United States prisons are dehumanizing, treating inmates more like animals than humans, this creates more resentment amongst the inmates and breeds more violence. German prison systems have applied these ideas of rehabilitation of the person, and have seen far better results in reduction of crime than the United States. If the system can be changed so that inmates are still treated as people as the ethics of a person asks us to, the rewards will follow. Officers who work in the prisons will also be treated with more respect from many inmates in return. The Ethics of the Person is, in my opinion, the most basic principle for moral values, and the easiest for the most amount of people to apply to their lives. It is a concept that can be well understood and can provide a sense of equality promoting peace, love, and happiness throughout the world if it is adopted by the
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