These days people get away with a lot of stuff. CEOs rob their companies blind, reporters make up stories for newspapers, meanwhile we pat ourselves on the back for never sinking so low. But even though our bad behavior doesn't make the evening news, it doesn't mean we should stop making moral decisions.
Arthur Dobrin is a professor of humanities and has written a book called "Ethics For Everyone". And here's his advice for making more ethical decision in tricky situations:
- First: Is it ethical to use a radar detector to avoid getting a speeding ticket? Professor Dobrin says even though they are legal in most states, their only purpose is to get around the law. So he says no, they are unethical to use. On the other hand, a spokesman for the California Highway Patrol disagrees. He says, when you hear the radar detector beep, you slow down. And that's what the police officers want. So go ahead and use it if it'll make you a more conscientious driver.
- Now what about the mom who covers for her kid who didn't do his homework? Professor Dobrin says lying for your child is wrong no matter what. And it sets the example that dishonesty is okay sometimes. The better move is to let your child assume responsibility for their actions. Ethics For Everyone
- Another moral dilemmaSwiping sugar packets from a restaurant. Professor Dobrin says restaurants expect a certain amount pilfering. But taking a couple packets is different than taking the entire container.
- And lastly What if your apartment gets free cable that you never signed up for? Should you say anything? Dobrin says, free cable is not a gift from the heavens. Yes, it's the cable company's mistake, but you're the one taking something that doesn't belong to you. Do the right thing and tell the cable company.