PHI 208 week 1 Assignment

  

Ashford 2: – Week 1 – Assignment

 

Thesis Construction
 

Choose one of the following issues and write a five paragraph essay in which you provide three reasons why the issue is ethically significant. The paragraphs of your essay should conform to the following guidelines:

  1. Paragraph 1:
         Provide a brief introduction to the issue. Your introduction must make      clear to the reader exactly what issue you are choosing and what you take      to be the boundaries of the issue. For example, if you were writing on      criminal punishment, you would need to make clear whether you were considering      only imprisonment and harsher penalties, or whether you were also      considering penalties such as fines for speeding. (Note, you may not write      on criminal punishment, this is just an example). The final sentence of      your paragraph must be a thesis sentence which lists the three reasons you      will put forward in your essay.
  2. Paragraphs 2, 3, and 4:
         The first sentence of each paragraph must be a topic sentence that clearly      states what reason you will be considering. The remainder of the paragraph      should make clear why this is a reason for thinking the issue you have      chosen is ethically significant. Each paragraph must contain at least four      sentences.
  3. Paragraph 5:
         Conclude your essay by very briefly reviewing the three reasons you have      discussed and why they show the issue is ethically significant. Your      paragraph should contain a paraphrased restatement of your thesis.

 Your ultimate goal in this assignment is to create a thesis in relation to a debatable ethical topic from the list below and to begin examining the reasons that you have for the position that you take on the topic. Please read the instructions for the Final Paper before starting this project. The following are the general topics from which you must create your thesis. The questions under each topic are meant to help inspire your thinking. You should not attempt to write on all the questions. The Final Paper will only be five to six pages, so it is important that you use these questions to create a much more specific topic that you will address in your Final Paper. Again, do not attempt to answer all of these questions. Instead, use these questions as a springboard for the creation of your own concrete and clearly defined thesis statements. To the right of the topics, you will find the weeks in which these topics are covered in the course. Please go to those weeks and begin using the resources in those weeks to gather information for your papers.
 

Just War/Military Ethics (Weeks Two and Four)

  • What are some circumstances      that would make a war just or unjust?  
  • Are there ways of conducting a      war that should be defended as just?  
  • Are there ways of conducting a      war that should be opposed as unjust?  
  • What kinds of virtues do      persons in the military need?   
    • What sorts of behavior might       those virtues require?  
    • What sorts of behavior would       be contrary to those virtues?  
  • Are there times when a      soldier’s virtues and/or duties may conflict?   
    • How should a soldier act in       such circumstances?

 Ethics Concerning the Needy (Week Five)

  • Are those with more morally required      to give aid to those with less?
  • Is it wrong to enjoy luxuries      when others lack basic needs?
  • Should we regard all people as      having equal worth and dignity? What does that imply about our obligations      toward them when they are in need?
  • Are there ways of aiding the      needy that are morally better than others?

 Gender Ethics (Week Five)

  • What does it mean to say that      women and men are equal? What does it not mean?
  • Are there ways in which women      and men are treated differently that are unjust?  
  • Are there ways in which women      and men are treated differently that are just?  
  • Are there social structures,      cultural trends (such as in media or advertising), or other aspects of our      society that convey and sustain gender inequality?
    • What should our response to       them be as individuals?  
    • What should our response to       them be as societies?  
  • Are there certain religious or      cultural beliefs or practices that convey and sustain gender inequalities?        
    • What should our response to       them be as individuals?  
    • What should our response to       them be as societies?

 Business Ethics (Week Three)

  • Should businesses aim primarily      at making as much profit as possible within the law? If not, what aims are      of equal or greater importance?
  • What kinds of practices would      an ethical business engage in? What kinds of practices would it avoid?
  • How should companies or      managers treat their employees?
  • What should one do when working      for an employer whose practices appear unethical?   
    • Do employees have obligations       beyond simply performing their assigned tasks well?  
  • Do businesses have different      moral obligations toward employees of other countries whose labor laws are      different than those of their home country?  
  • What obligations, if any, do      businesses have toward the communities from which they profit (this might      include communities from which they draw resources, labor, and/or      customers)?  
  • What are the virtues of a good      business owner and/or leader in some particular industry?  
  • What are the virtues of a good      employee in some particular industry?

 Ethics Regarding Animals and/or the Environment (Weeks Two and Four)

Environment

  • What does it mean to respect      the environment in the way we as individuals live our lives? 
    • What kinds of behaviors would       that involve?  
    • What kinds of behaviors would       that exclude?
  • Do we as individuals have moral      obligations toward the environment when our own behavior has very little      direct effect on the overall state of things?  
  • How should we weigh human needs      and/or desires against environmental impact?  
  • Does a government have an      obligation to care for its natural resources as well as its human      citizens?   
    • How should the answer to this       question effect political policy?

 Animals

  • What does it mean to respect      non-human animals in the way we as individuals live our lives? 
    • What kinds of behaviors would       that involve?  
    • What kinds of behaviors would       that exclude?
  • Do we as individuals have moral      obligations toward non-human animals when our own behavior has very little      direct effect on the overall state of things?  
  • How should we weigh human needs      and/or desires against those of non-human animals?  
  • Does a government have an      obligation to care for non-human animals as well as its human citizens?        
    • How should the answer to this       question effect political policy?

 End of Life Medical Issues (Week One)

  • Do people have a right to end      their lives whenever they choose to?  
  • Can people be mistaken about      whether their life has value and ought to be ended?   
    • Does the answer to this       question effect the answer to the first question?  
  • Can we set polices that      determine in each case what the value of human life is and when it should      or should not be ended?   
    • Does the answer to this       question effect the answer to the first question?  
  • Does it make a difference      whether a person’s life is ended by an act of active killing, or whether      it is simply allowed to expire?   
    • Does it make a difference       whether the agent (i.e., the person causing the death), in either case,       is the person himself or herself or someone else (such as a doctor)?
  • Is there a limit to the amount      of resources we should allocate toward the preservation of a life in the      face of limited resources for other healthcare needs?  
  • Considering lives that are on      the brink of death, under what circumstances (if any) would it be      ethically wrong to prolong that life?   
    • Under what circumstances (if       any) would it be ethically required to prolong that life? 
    • Under what circumstances (if       any) would it be ethically required to end that life? 

 The following are recommendations that will guide you as think about and complete this assignment:

  • Please use the Ashford Writing      Center Thesis Generator to help you generate your      thesis. (https://awc.ashford.edu/writing-tools-thesis-generator.html)
  • An issue is ethically      significant if there appear to be good reasons that support different      perspectives in relation to the ethical issue. For example, there appear      to be good reasons to place dangerous people in prisons. At the same time,      there also appear to be good reasons to give people as much freedom as      possible or to try to rehabilitate them and get them back into society      when they break the law. Your issue should be something that can be      debated.    
  • Ethical issues are issues that      relate to how people ought to live or how society ought to function. What      you are going to eat for breakfast is not an ethical issue in general.      However, if you believe that eating animals is wrong because it causes      them harm, then what you eat does become an ethical issue. What clothes      you wear is not generally an ethical issue. However, if those clothes are      manufactured by child slaves, then what one wears becomes an ethical issue.
  • The reasons that you present in      your paper should abide by philosophical standards. They should be backed      in evidence and logical reasoning. Believing something because one has      been taught to believe it is not a sufficient reason to hold that belief. Avoid      using anecdotal evidence and be sure to attempt to prove that your reasons      are grounded in evidence that is convincing.

 The paper must be 400 to 700 words in length (excluding title and reference pages) and formatted according to APA style. For information regarding APA, including samples and tutorials, visit the Ashford Writing Center, located within the Learning Resources tab on the left navigation toolbar.
 

The Ashford Writing Center (AWC)  has two kinds of tutoring available to you.

  • Live Chat – If you have writing-related      questions about a topic before you draft a discussion post or submit a      written assignment, you will now be able to chat live with a tutor for a      short (up to 20 minute) conversation. Live Chat will be available Monday      through Friday from 10:00-11:00 am and 4:00-5:00 pm (PST). AWC Live Chat
  • Email Paper Review – If you have a draft, partial      draft, or even if you’re having trouble getting started, you can complete      a submission form and email your paper to the AWC for review. 
    • Writing Tutors will do their       best to return your paper with their comments within 48 hours, not       including Saturdays and Sundays. Please plan accordingly if you would like       to receive feedback before an assignment due date. AWC Email Paper       Review 

Carefully review the Grading Rubric for the criteria that will be used to evaluate your assignment.

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