Pollock ethics 8e_ch04
Published on: Mar 4, 2016
Transcripts - Pollock ethics 8e_ch04
Becoming an Ethical
Lecture slides prepared by Lisa J. Taylor
1. We have eliminated many of the opportunities for
the teaching of morals.
2. The community is not a cohesive force any longer.
3. The authority of religion is not as pervasive as it
4. The family is weakening as a force of socialization.
5. Educators have abdicated their responsibility for
moral instruction in favor of scientific neutrality.
• John Edwards, potential
• Eliot Spitzer – Former
New York governor, district
attorney, and attorney
How Does One Become
a Good Person?
Fields of study seek to answer this question with free will
acknowledged to greater or lesser degrees.
Why do People Act Unethically?
• Does biology play a role?
• Is modeling and/or reinforcement lacking?
• Does it have to do with moral development?
• Could it be a combination of things?
Theories of Moral
Behavior depends on an individual’s biological predispositions.
Behavior depends on the rewards an individual has received.
Behavior depends on an individual’s intellectual and emotional
stage of development, which in turn depends on their
Recent research suggests
individuals may be predisposed to
certain types of behavior due to the
biology of their brains.
Frontal Lobe Damage
May result in increased impulsiveness,
decreased attention span, difficulty in
logical reasoning and following
instructions, and antisocial behavior.
Cortical Limbic Network
• Structured event knowledge
• Social perceptual and functional
• Central motive and emotional states
Disruptions in the network can limit the ability to respond to ethical dilemmas.
• Men’s brains function differently than
• Statistically, men are more likely to be
antisocial, to have serious childhood
conduct disorders, and to commit serious
• Certain traits support the survival of the species
• Moral “senses”: sympathy, fairness, self-control,
• Individual inheritance or group selection
• Morality seems to lie in the inferior parietal lobe
(rationality) but also in the “emotion” center of the
Imitating the behavior of
Parents and other
adults provide role
models for children
through their behavior
Premise: All human behavior is learned; therefore,
ethics is a function of learning rather than reasoning.
• A behavior that is rewarded
will be repeated
• After enough reinforcement,
the behavior becomes
• The individual develops values
consistent with the behavior
or Moral RestructuringMoral justification: Appeal to a higher end (e.g., terrorists who are fighting
for a cause).
Euphemistic labeling: Downplaying the seriousness of actions (e.g.,
Advantageous comparison: Act isn’t as bad as some others (e.g., “What
was done at Abu Ghraib wasn’t as bad as what the insurgents did who cut
off the heads of civilian contractors.”).
Displacement of responsibility: Denies culpability (e.g., “I was only
Diffusion of responsibility: Mob actions
Distortion of the consequences: Misidentifying the consequences of
one’s actions (e.g., CEO who gives the order to pollute merely requests that
the problem be “taken care of”).
Dehumanization: Process to strip the victim of any qualities of similarity
that may create sympathy (e.g., the use of terms such as gooks, slant-eyes,
1. They involve qualitative differences in modes of thinking,
as opposed to quantitative differences.
2. Each stage forms a structured whole; cognitive
development and moral growth are integrated.
3. Stages form an invariant sequence; no one bypasses any
stage, and not all people develop to the higher stages.
4. Stages are hierarchical integrations.
Premise: Moral development, like physical growth, occurs in stages.
Kohlberg’s Stages of Moral
Approach to moral issues motivated purely by personal
Stage 1: Punishment/Obedience Orientation
Stage 2: Instrument/Relativity Orientation
Approach to moral issues motivated by socialization.
Stage 3: Interpersonal Concordance Orientation.
Stage 4: Law-and-Order Orientation.
Kohlberg’s Stages of Moral
Approach to moral issues motivated by desire to discover universal
good beyond own self or own society.
Stage 5: Social Contract Orientation
Stage 6: Universal Ethical Orientation
Approach to moral issues moves beyond the human to a cosmic or
religious level of awareness. Kohlberg only speculated that this
stage might exist.
Stage 7: Transcendental Orientation
• Between 2003 – 2010, 129 U.S.
Customs and Border Patrol agents
were arrested on corruption charges.
• Corrupt officers could earn up to $60K
per day—the equivalent to a year’s
• In 2009, it was reported that some
Mexican smuggling cartels groom
their workers to apply for border patrol
jobs as a part of a long range plan to
• U.S. Border Patrol Agent Martha
Garnica – Arrested, convicted, and
sentenced to 20 years after trying to
recruit a fellow border agent into the
racket of protecting smugglers
Criticisms of Moral
• Justice/Western Bias: Stages center too much on the concept of
justice, ignoring other aspects of morality.
• Value Bias: Justice, rules, and rights are emphasized as higher
values than caring and relationships.
• Deontological Bias: The higher stages are based on deontological
assumptions about universal ethical principles.
• Rationality Bias: Emphasizes reason in moral decisions while
ignoring emotional factors.
• Gender Bias: Emphasizes traditionally “male” values and virtues.
• Belief = Action?: Difficult to link reasoning levels with moral action in
Factors Necessary for Moral
• Encouragement to examine situations from other points
• Exposure to individuals whose thinking is a stage higher
than one’s own
• Exposure to conflicts in moral reasoning that challenge
one’s present stage
• Engagement in logical thinking, such as reasoned
argument and consideration of alternatives
• Responsibility for making moral decisions and acting on
• Participation in creating and maintaining a just community
Teaching Ethics (Sherman)
Stimulate the "moral imagination" by posing difficult moral
Encourage the recognition of ethical issues beyond immediate
Help to develop analytical skills and the tools of ethical analysis.
Elicit a sense of moral obligation and personal responsibility.
Explore the morality of coercion, which is intrinsic to criminal
Help students recognize the difference between technical and
Address the full range of moral issues in criminology and criminal
• An former U.S. lobbyist, businessman, movie
producer, & writer.
• Extensive corruption investigation that led to
his conviction and to 21 persons either
pleading or being found guilty.
• After a guilty plea in the Indian lobbying
scandal and his dealings with Sun Cruz
Casinos in January 2006, he was sentenced
to 6 years in federal prison for mail fraud,
conspiracy to bribe public officials, and tax
evasion. He served 43 months in prison and
was released in 2010.
• Wrote the book, Capitol Punishment: The
Hard Truth About Corruption From America's
Most Notorious Lobbyist.
• Since his release, he has taught ethics.
• Indifference towards integrity.
• Ignoring obvious ethical issues.
• Creating a fear and hypocrisy
• Maintaining a survival of the
fittest environment by individual
Gardner’s Cognitive Capacities
• The “disciplined mind”—the ability to focus and learn a field
• The “synthesizing mind”—the ability to integrate diverse
ideas into a coherent whole.
• The “creating mind”—the ability to recognize and solve
• The “respectful mind”—the ability to form and maintain good
relationships with other people.
• The “ethical mind”—the ability to fulfil one’s responsibilities
as a citizen and to identify with fellow humans.
How Leaders Can Foster
1. Establish realistic goals and objectives.
2. Provide ethical leadership (set a moral tone by
3. Establish formal written codes of ethics.
4. Provide a whistle blowing mechanism.
5. Discipline violators of ethical standards.
6. Train all personnel in ethics.
• Strong leadership involves caring and
commitment to the organization.
• Idealistic realism: the ability of good leaders
to acknowledge and understand social realities
while avoiding the trap of cynicism.
• Ethical leaders possess vision and moral
responsibility and engage in enlightened
The police chief in Bell,
California was under
investigation for accepting a
salary of $457,000 per year.
Chief Randy Adam’s salary
is double that of LAPD’s
police chief Charlie Beck.
The city of 40,000 consists
of blue collar workers and
has a higher than average
Ethical Choices for
Criminal Justice Professionals
• Friendship vs. institutional
• Client (offender) needs vs. bureaucratic
efficiency and institutional goals.
• Personal goals or biases vs. fair and impartial
treatment of the public and the clients served.
The inappropriate use of discretion occurs when the
professional uses unethical criteria to resolve decisions.
Avoiding Cynicism and
1. First, adopt realistic goals before
entering the profession.
2. Second, find and nurture a network of
mentors and colleagues that promotes
3. Third, seek self-fulfillment and personal