We Do Not Possess Any Genuine Freedom to Act Ethically (a Grade Essay) : )

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By simmer
Words 1488
Pages 6
There is clear evidence to verify we have freedom to act ethically, we see this through our strong sense of rationalisation through our conscience (Enrich Fromm).
There are major flaws to this statement as it could be suggested that ‘ethical’ behaviour is an influence of external factors such as natural laws, religion, primary and secondary carers and prior events. Therefore, the question could be raised, do we actually any have any freedom to act ethically or is it just a result of what we have already learnt (Piaget)? Then again, what is ethical behaviour to begin with? A universal idea of what is right or wrong that is decided by a group of people? The concluding opinion that will be formed is: we do have a genuine amount of freedom however this notion is only supported to a certain extent as I believe we are influenced by external factors. This essay will discuss points that would approve and disapprove of this statement because I believe it is a combination of both, going with a soft determinist approach.
Hard determinists would suggest our choices are determined by prior events. This is a logical statement because a choice we make today could affect the choice we would make tomorrow. For example, a levels are picked accordingly due to prior grades we received in GCSE. Aquinas’s cause and effect theory is applicable to this notion of everything have an efficient cause: nothing can be efficient or cause itself. However, despite this approach making total sense as it is an intelligible to suggest that prior events do effect the choices we make today, resulting in a restriction, resulting with us not having complete freedom over the choices but over the outcome to act ethically. This is where some might see this theory’s flaws, for example the case of Loeb and Leopold could be taken into account as they were let off the death penalty to life imprisonment because…...

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