Sample Essay on Solving Ethical Dilemmas

Humans in their interactions are often faced with ethical moments that test their morality and ethical principles. These ethical dilemmas often stem from conflicting personal and professional ethical principles and needs. The decisions made from such dilemmas are directed by different ideologies such as utilitarianism, Kantianism, libertarianism and Machiavellianism among others. Ethical dilemma is a situation involving a number of actions to choose from in order to obtain a balanced solution. In Machiavellianism, individuals chose actions that promote their own self-interests. In this case, the only justification for doing something is the gain an individual obtains from it rather than the common good of society. Utilitarianism is concerned with selection of the actions that result to greater benefit to the highest number of people. This is the reason why it is also referred to as universalism with humanism elements. This approach first takes into consideration the various courses of action that are available; identifies the persons affected by the action and what will be derived from each action in terms of benefits or harms and finally, the action that will result in the greatest benefit and least harm is chosen.

In solving ethical dilemmas, utilitarianism approach is the best because it considers the available courses of actions and provides for a solution that has the greatest good for the greatest number of people. This is unlike Machiavellianism, which dictates that actions taken are only for promotion of one’s self-interest. However, utilitarianism can be criticized for disregarding justice where a person is not given his or her due in accordance to what justice dictates since it does not take into account what an individual has done when deciding on an appropriate course of action that affects him or