respond to peers discussion, philosophy homework help

timer Asked: Jun 10th, 2017
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Question Description

attached is the instruction for the peer response. The goal is to respond to peers by attempting to further the discussion through examining their claim or argument more in depth utilizing the reading materials provided. Specific questions in regards to the subject may be asked to further the peers discussion. Highlighted in red is the actual assignment instructions as well as each students post.

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Initial Discussion post: Is it ever morally permissible to lie to someone? Describe a circumstance in which it seems that lying might make more people happy than telling the truth. Would lying be the right thing to do in that circumstance, or is it our moral duty to tell the truth, even then? Consider what Immanuel Kant would say, and explain that with reference to this week’s readings. Then, offer your own perspective. If you agree with Kant, consider and respond to an objection to his view. If you disagree with Kant, explain why. Discuss the positive and negative aspects of deontological theory as it relates to another of the theories you have encountered in this course. Note that this is not just asking you to explain your views about lying! As always the main event is in explaining what Kant thinks about lying and why he thinks it, based on the central principles of deontology. Once you've done that, then you explain whether you agree or disagree and why. Respond to your classmates and instructor. Try to attempt to take the conversation further by examining their claims or arguments in more depth or responding to the posts that they make to you. Keep the discussion on target and try to analyze things in as much detail as you can. Must utilize the course reading as a source. Student 1: Deontology examines why the act was done or why one took part in the act, what was the reasoning or rule. An act is considered morally right if it is accepted universally. In contrast, if the act is not accepted universally it is considered wrong. According to our textbook, “deontological ethics focuses on the will of the person acting, the person's intention in carrying out the act, and particularly, the rule according to which the act is carried out” (Mosser, 2013, pg. 6.1). Therefore, according to Immanuel Kant, it is never morally permissible to lie to someone. Through Immanuel Kant’s view, lying would make someone an immoral person for several reasons. First, Immanuel Kant mentions one should never treat another individual as a means to an end but should regard other people as ends in themselves (Mosser, 2013). By lying to someone you are being deceptive and misleading them which is immoral from Immanuel Kant’s perspective. The deontologist believe in respecting others and avoid impeding on others needs and desires. As stated in our textbook, “the deontologist, ignores an act's consequences when evaluating whether it is a good, bad, or morally neutral act” (Mosser, 2013, pg. 6.1). Therefore, the reasoning for lying (whether for good or bad) does not matter, it’s all about the intention. I believe honesty is very important and really says something about someone’s character and how others perceive that individual. However, I would have to disagree with Immanuel Kant because I don’t think lying is just black and white, there are grey areas. A circumstance in which it seems that lying might make more people happy than telling the truth would be lying to young children to protect their innocents. I am not saying we should shelter children but I think there is a right time and place to have certain discussions with children and their age level also plays a role in when those discussions should take place. I personally believe lying is the right thing to do in this circumstance because we are protecting the younger generation so they can handle life and reality as they grow and mature. Student 2: The morality of lying is a debated subject with a variety of views depending upon the approach. For example, Immanuel Kant and the Deontology view believe lying is never morally permissible since we cannot make it a universal law that lying is okay, while Consequentialism is based upon the outcome of the lie, and the utilitarian approach believes lying is acceptable if it promoted the greater good. The problem lies within the following example. Someone wants to do harm to your family and demands to know where they are, it would seem that telling a lie would be okay since it would protect your family. In that situation, and in any case where we are protecting others, and ourselves, it is not our moral duty to tell the truth. Kant believed that lying to someone would be disrespecting his or her “intrinsic worth." However, in my opinion, a person with bad intentions that wishes to cause harm is not deserving of respect. I think the Deontology theory is valuable in many aspects of life since it is important to treat others as you would want to be treated, but certain topics such as lying unveils flaws within that theory. I believe that in many circumstances, lies can be helpful in managing healthy relationships. For example, if I were to ask my wife if she likes my new hairstyle, and she said it looks awful, then I would feel bad about myself and our relationship would suffer. Therefore, the intention of the lie is important; it should be for the benefit of others and not for personal gain. Student 3: The first question asks, "Is it ever morally permissible to lie to someone?"• I am going to answer yes on this question, primarily because there are many circumstances where lying might make people happy more than telling the truth. I have been in a situation where I lied to avoid telling the truth. I was in a situation that involved a couple who were good friends of mine. One day, the girl has an opportunity to cheat on the guy (note: she cheated with a different guy, not me!). I knew about it but chose to not say anything to my friend. Well, to make a long story short, the truth eventually came out and they broke up. They never reconciled, which caught me in a bad situation because they were both my friends. He asked me if I knew and I lied and said that I did not. Like I said before, the truth eventually came out and she, in turn, asked me how he found out. I told her that I did not have the slightest idea of how he found out. Turns out, the guy she cheated with, was in the same company (military unit) as her ex-boyfriend. Sometimes, the truth comes out, one way or another. Kant would say that the right thing to do would be to tell the truth. Kant's stern rule about never lying, then, seems to force everyone in the above cases to do something they would prefer not to do (Mosser, 2013). I absolutely disagree with this logic. Suppose I told the truth, to everyone involved. I would imagine that the worse-case scenario would be that the guy friend would be upset that I carried a secret involving his girlfriend and chose to not tell him. His soon-to-be exgirlfriend would be mad that I betrayed her confidence. Is this a case of choosing the lesser of two evils, knowing that the outcome would be bad, no matter which road I chose? The required portions are marked in red on pages 5-6, 10-12, 25-26, and 28-30. Groundwork for the Metaphysic of Morals Immanuel Kant Copyright ©2010–2015 All rights reserved. Jonathan Bennett [Brackets] enclose editorial explanations. Small ·dots· enclose material that has been added, but can be read as though it were part of the original text. Occasional •bullets, and also indenting of passages that are not quotations, are meant as aids to grasping the structure of a sentence or a thought. Every four-point ellipsis . . . . indicates the omission of a brief passage that seems to present more difficulty than it is worth. Longer omissions are rerported between square brackets in normal-sized type.] In the title, ‘Groundwork’ refers not to the foundation that is laid but to the work of laying it. First launched: July 2005 Last amended: September 2008 Contents Preface 1 Chapter 1: Moving from common-sense knowledge to philosophical knowledge about morality 5 Chapter 2: Moving from popular moral philosophy to the metaphysic of morals 14 Chapter 3: Moving from the metaphysic of morals to the critique of pure practical reason 41 Groundwork Immanuel Kant Preface Preface hand, can each have an empirical part; indeed, they must do so because each must discover the laws ·for its domain·. For •the former, these are the laws of nature considered as something known through experience; and for •the latter, they are the laws of the human will so far as it is affected by nature. ·The two sets of laws are nevertheless very different from one another·. The laws of nature are laws according to which everything does happen; the laws of morality are laws according to which everything ought to happen; they allow for conditions under which what ought to happen doesn’t happen. •Empirical philosophy is philosophy that is based on experience. •Pure philosophy is philosophy that presents its doctrines solely on the basis of a priori principles. Pure philosophy ·can in turn be divided into two·: when it is entirely formal it is •logic; when it is confined to definite objects of the understanding, it is •metaphysics. In this way there arises the idea of a two-fold metaphysic— a metaphysic of nature and a metaphysic of morals. Physics, therefore, will have an empirical part and also a rational part, and ethics likewise, though here the empirical part may be called more specifically ‘practical anthropology’ and the rational part ‘morals’ in the strict sense. All crafts, trades and arts have profited from the division of labour; for when •each worker sticks to one particular kind of work that needs to be handled differently from all the others, he can do it better and more easily than when •one person does everything. Where work is not thus differentiated and divided, where everyone is a jack-of-all-trades, the crafts remain at an utterly primitive level. Now, here is a question worth asking: Doesn’t pure philosophy in each of its parts require a man who is particularly devoted to that part? Some people regularly mix up the empirical with the rational, suiting their mixture to the taste of the public Ancient Greek philosophy was divided into three branches of knowledge: •natural science, •ethics, and •logic. This classification perfectly fits what it is meant to fit; the only improvement it needs is the supplying of the principle on which it is based; that will let us be sure that the classification does cover all the ground, and will enable us to define the necessary subdivisions ·of the three broad kinds of knowledge·. [Kant, following the Greek, calls the trio Physik, Ethik and Logik. Our word ‘physics’ is much too narrow for Physik, which is why ‘natural science’ is preferred here. What is lost is the surface neatness of the Greek and German trio, and of the contrast between natural science and metaphysics, Physik and Metaphysik ] There are two kinds of rational knowledge: •material knowledge, which concerns some object, and •formal knowledge, which pays no attention to differences between objects, and is concerned only with the form of understanding and of reason, and with the universal rules of thinking. Formal philosophy is called •‘logic’. Material philosophy— having to do with definite objects and the laws that govern them—is divided into two parts, depending on whether the laws in question are laws of •nature or laws of •freedom. Knowledge of laws of the former kind is called •‘natural science’, knowledge of laws of the latter kind is called •‘ethics’. The two are also called ‘theory of nature’ and ‘theory of morals’ respectively. •Logic can’t have anything empirical about it—it can’t have a part in which universal and necessary laws of thinking are derived from experience. If it did, it wouldn’t be logic—i.e. a set of rules for the understanding or for reason, rules that are valid for all thinking and that must be rigorously proved. The •natural and •moral branches of knowledge, on the other 1 Groundwork Immanuel Kant Preface absolute necessity; •that the command: You are not to lie doesn’t apply only to human beings, as though it had no force for other rational beings (and similarly with all other moral laws properly so called); •that the basis for obligation here mustn’t be looked for in people’s natures or their circumstances, but ·must be found· a priori solely in the concepts of pure reason; and •that any precept resting on principles of mere experience may be called a practical rule but never a moral law. This last point holds even if there is something universal about the precept in question, and even if its empirical content is very small (perhaps bringing in only the motive involved). Thus not only are moral laws together with their principles essentially different from all practical knowledge involving anything empirical, but all moral philosophy rests solely on its pure ·or non-empirical· part. Its application to human beings doesn’t depend on knowledge of any facts about them (anthropology); it gives them, as rational beings, a priori laws—·ones that are valid whatever the empirical circumstances may be·. (Admittedly ·experience comes into the story in a certain way, because· these laws require a power of judgment that has been sharpened by experience— •partly in order to pick out the cases where the laws apply and •partly to let the laws get into the person’s will and to stress that they are to be acted on. For a human being has so many preferences working on him that, though he is quite capable of having the idea of a practical pure reason, he can’t so easily bring it to bear on the details of how he lives his life.) A metaphysic of morals is therefore indispensable, ·for two reasons, one •theoretical and one •practical·. One reason comes from •our wish, as theoreticians, to explore the source of the a priori practical principles that lie in our reason. The other reason is that •until we have the guide and supreme without actually knowing what its proportions are; they call themselves independent thinkers and write off those who apply themselves exclusively to the rational part of philosophy as mere ponderers. Wouldn’t things be improved for the learned profession as a whole if those ‘independent thinkers’ were warned that they shouldn’t carry on two employments at once—employments that need to be handled quite differently, perhaps requiring different special talents for each—because all you get when one person does several of them is bungling? But all I am asking is this: Doesn’t the nature of the science ·of philosophy· require that we carefully separate its empirical from its rational part? That would involve putting •a metaphysic of nature before real (empirical) natural science, and •a metaphysic of morals before practical anthropology. Each of these two branches of metaphysics must be carefully cleansed of everything empirical, so that we can know how much pure reason can achieve in each branch, and from what sources it creates its a priori teaching. ·The metaphysic of morals must be cleansed in this way, no matter who the metaphysicians of morals are going to be·—whether they will include all the moralists (there are plenty of them!) or only a few who feel a calling to this task. Since my purpose here is directed to moral philosophy, I narrow the question I am asking down to this: •Isn’t it utterly necessary to construct a pure moral philosophy that is completely freed from everything that may be only empirical and thus belong to anthropology? That there must be such a philosophy is self-evident from the common idea of duty and moral laws. Everyone must admit •that if a law is to hold morally (i.e. as a basis for someone’s being obliged to do something), it must imply 2 Groundwork Immanuel Kant Preface human will as such, which for the most part are drawn from ·empirical· psychology, whereas the metaphysic of morals aims ·at a non-empirical investigation, namely· investigating the idea and principles of a possible pure will. Without having the least right to do so, Wolff’s ‘universal practical philosophy’ does have things to say about laws and duty; but this doesn’t conflict with what I have been saying. For the authors of this intellectual project remain true to their idea of it ·in this part of its territory also: they· don’t distinguish •motives that are presented completely a priori by reason alone and are thus moral in the proper sense of the word, from •motives that involve empirical concepts—ones that the understanding turns into universal concepts by comparing experiences. In the absence of that distinction, they consider motives without regard to how their sources differ; they treat them as all being of the same kind, and merely count them; and on that basis they formulate their concept of obligation, ·so-called·. This is as far from moral obligation as it could be; but in a philosophy that doesn’t decide whether the origin of all possible practical concepts is a priori or a posteriori, what more could you expect? Intending some day to publish a •metaphysic of morals, I now present this •groundwork, ·this exercise of foundationlaying·, for it. There is, to be sure, no other basis for such a metaphysic than a critical examination of pure practical reason, just as there is no other basis for metaphysic than the critical examination of pure speculative reason that I have already published. [The unavoidable word ‘speculative’ (like norm for making correct moral judgments, morality itself will be subject to all kinds of corruption. ·Here is the reason for that·. For something to be morally good, it isn’t enough that it conforms to the ·moral· law; it must be done because it conforms to the law. An action that isn’t performed with that motive may happen to fit the moral law, but its conformity to the law will be chancy and unstable, and more often than not the action won’t be lawful at all. So we need to find the moral law in its purity and genuineness, this being what matters most in questions about conduct; and the only place to find it is in a philosophy that is pure ·in the sense I have introduced—see page 1·. So metaphysics must lead the way; without it there can’t be any moral philosophy. Philosophy ·that isn’t pure, i.e.· that mixes pure principles with empirical ones, doesn’t deserve the name of ‘philosophy’ (for what distinguishes •philosophy from •intelligent common sense is precisely that •the former treats as separate kinds of knowledge what •the latter jumbles up together). Much less can it count as ‘moral philosophy’, since by this mixing ·of pure with empirical· it deprives morality of its purity and works against morality’s own purposes. I am pointing to the need for an entirely new field of investigation to be opened up. You might think that ·there is nothing new about it because· it is already present in the famous Wolff’s ‘introduction’ to his moral philosophy (i.e. in what he called ‘universal practical philosophy’); but it isn’t. Precisely because his work aimed to be universal practical philosophy, it didn’t deal with any particular kind of will, and attended only to will in general and with such actions and conditions as that brings in; and so it had no room for the notion of •a will that is determined by a priori principles with no empirical motives, which means that it had no place for anything that could be called •a pure will. Thus Wolff’s ‘introduction’. . . .concerns the actions and conditions of the its cognate‘speculation’) is half of the dichotomy between practical and speculative. A speculative endeavour is one aimed at establishing truths about what is the case, implying nothing about what ought to be the 3 Groundwork Immanuel Kant Preface case; with no suggestion that it involves guesswork or anything like that. Two of Kant’s most famous titles—Critique of Pure Reason and Critique of In laying a foundation, however, al ...
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Student 1
Deontology is a duty to be in a position to tell the truth in all circumstances. The writer
has pointed it out clearly that deontological ethics focuses on the will of the person acting, the
person's intention in carrying out the act, and particularly the rule according to which the act is
carried out. Kant is so succinct in his argument that is very immoral to lie and it is an act of
disrespect to other people being ...

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