ethical dilemma

ethical dilemma Essay Examples

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Published: Friday 25th of January 2013

Essay Example on Ethical Dilemmas

As a result of the constant wave of modern and new advancements that have been taking place over years, you find that mankind usually faces many challenges on a daily basis. One of those challenges has affected the human economic, social, cultural and even moral well-being, among many others, is the challenge of ethical dilemmas. Ages ago, you might discover that the principles surrounding our social responsibilities had a deep regard for the aftermath to the immediate community once a decision was made. However, on the opposite end of things, with today’s connections, a person’s decisions have the potential to reach far worse effects. In relation to this, you see that when we are facing some ethical dilemmas, there is a possibility of more pronounced and far much chaotic consequences stringed along with the choices that we decide to make.

Refining Our Decision-Making System

For us to size-down the adverse effects that could easily arise from the decisions we make, there must be an effort that’s deliberate and conscious towards refining our decision-making system. The first step to achieving this is to task ourselves initially with creating a clear and logical analysis of the problems and issues at hand. Acting that way a person is properly placed to make a good judgment of the best course of action that befits the issue. However, note that this is not exactly a “walk in a park” type of thing to do. We must record in the back of our minds that most of such situations turn out to be immensely distressing and thei decision-making processes also equally difficult to go through with. One of the main reasons behind this is that ethical dilemmas push us against the wall, forcing us to decide between two equally desirable options that, often, are antagonistic to each other. Many times, when a person wracks one's mind concerning the dynamics surrounding ethics, you find that the mind takes the path of heading in the direction of weighty issues. Some of these issues include gay rights, abortion and even cloning among many of the perfect examples that can be fleshed out from the current issues the world we live in today faces. It is true that these topics have the ominous cloud of controversy hovering over them in each turn they take, thus, making them the best breeding ground for great debates. However, despite this, you may notice that some ethical issues can be viewed to be subtler in nature as compared to the ones alluded to above that can end up having a more positive impact in most people’s lives. It is almost obvious that chances of a student in any particular class are met with the ethical dilemma of deciding whether to report his/her classmates cheating in an exam are high up. One could be easily challenged with the much-dreaded risk of exposure as the one who let the cat out of the bag. In the event that such a thing happened, the most immediate opinion that would happen is the student getting ostracized and alienated from his/her social peers. On the other hand, a student could be having opposing thoughts that would make him/ her thinking that cheating is an act of moral compromise. In addition to this, a student could feel that the cheating classmate is on a treacherous path that could wind up in riskier and more dreadful behavior in the future. At the same time, these thoughts could then get muffled up by recognition of the unwritten and obvious code of behavior and conduct among peers. Failure to conform to this code could lead one to be labeled as one of the dishonorable "snitches" and a person that shouldn’t be confided in. If anything of this nature happened to a student, the repercussions would transcend time and leave scars on his/her self-esteem for ages.

The Process of Solving Ethical Dilemmas

With this illustration, we get to see that there is a need for a specific type of process that is meant to be hard-wired into each person’s mind. This process will then serve to run in the person’s brain whenever he/she is faced with a controversial choice and any other tough decisions based on the various ethical challenges that life could throw. In light of this, there are a number of factors that need to be brought to the table of a person’s decision-making process in order to help them determine the best way to handle the situation. To begin with, it is of the essence for people to ask themselves this one question: who are these stakeholders in the decision that they are about to make? Also, how much will they be affected by it? Based on the kind of circumstances that are at hand, there is a good possibility that this could turn out to be information that’s difficult to come by and ascertain. A good example is in the employment world. A disgruntled type of employee could be unmasked for his veiled attempts to steal clients from his employer or company. Most of this employee’s attempts could be found to have been successful enough to the extent of even setting up his own business. The commensurate impact on the company in question could end up not being readily evident, similar to the reporting of this activity not having a direct impact on the life and welfare of the reporter. Such situations are the best ingredients of brewing up a concoction that has been heavily laced with the ability to bring about lack of proper decision-making between what is wrong and what is right. Because of this, it is common to find that most companies around the globe have already laid foundations on the ethical guidelines that dictate what their employees should do and the boundaries they should not cross. The moment that you have been able to determine the decision’s potential implication and repercussions, it is prudent for you to advance to a progressive vantage point of that situation at hand.

Progressive Method of Tackling Ethical Dilemmas

  1. Identify the issue or problem that is at stake. Ask yourself this question, “What is the moral issue being compromised in that particular situation?”
  2. The minute that you have chosen to go with a particular decision, be careful and faithful enough to go the entire journey with it. It is important to note that executing actions that are meant to solve the bone of contention; you will be killing two birds with one stone. First of all, you will be showing all the people concerned that you have an avid adherence to a good moral character. Secondly, you will also be reinforcing your inner conscious’ correct moral compass, and in return, this will give you good enough mettle as well as lay the best groundwork for making tougher decisions and settling dilemmas within yourself in future.
It is safe to assert that there is a lot more involved in the decision-making process, especially, in areas that revolve around moral choices which are much further than the issue has been raised. Each time you find the courage and strength to make choices that are contrary to and step on the toes of the popular opinion, especially, your peers and social class, then rest assured that you are forging a remarkably unique kind of inner strength. This is an inner strength that is impossible to be bought or even learned through lectures, books, and all other valid academic means. The only way that it can be acquired is through facing the hard decisions in life and not running away from making the right call despite the opposing forces around you.


When it comes to reality, you observe that it is almost impossible to pass through life and not make any difficult decisions. In addition to this, the people that embrace this fact and wire themselves to make tough calls, even in the smaller things, typically conclude that it hardly ever gets easier. What happens is that they end up getting stronger in each stage of this process. So, when a person faces an ethical dilemma, there is a good possibility that it can have an impact on a broad spectrum of people both indirectly and directly. However, it is worth noting that the ability to stand out and stay firm on an issue that is unpalatable with many people could end up being of more benefit to you than it will be to the other person. Your character gets built, and on top of that, it assists you to forge a personality that is unique and can be shared and appreciated by other people in the world at large.