To this point in the class we have focused on the study of ethics from ancient times through the Enlightenment period, and in upcoming lessons we will continue with this historical approach into modern times. This week, however, you will begin working on a multistep assignment that will focus on a contemporary ethical issue, and you will apply ideas from throughout the course to reach an ethical stance on it. This assignment will consist of four main pieces.
- Topic Selection: See directions below (Week 3)
- Academic Research: (Week 4)
- Introduction, Background, and Ethical Challenges: (Week 5)
- Solutions and Conclusion: (Week 6)
- Presentation: (Week 7)
For more details, consult the Ethics and Contemporary Issues Project Overview.
As a reminder, here are the possible topics for your project.
- Changing the names of schools or taking down statues named after controversial historical figures
- Using race or ethnicity as a factor in hiring decisions or college admissions
- "Canceling" people or organizations who have made controversial or insensitive remarks
- Encouraging businesses to become more politically active
- Allowing people who have undergone gender reassignment to participate in competitive sports
- Providing people with disabilities reasonable accommodations in the workplace
- Teaching critical race theory or the 1619 Project in schools
- Compelling private businesses to serve customers they do not wish to
- Debating the merits of various immigration policies, such as open borders, the building of walls, and so on
- Doing away with cash bail for many criminal offenses
- Eliminating harassment in the workplace
- Reallocating money from the police to other city agencies and services
- Reforming or eliminating the Electoral College
- Implementing a wealth tax on millionaires and billionaires who pay little or no income tax
- Forgiving student loans or making college tuition free
- Giving everyone a universal basic income
- Requiring voters to provide identification
This week you will begin by choosing your topic. You will complete this assignment by answering the following questions in complete sentences and submitting them in a Word document.
- What is your topic?
- Why did you choose it?
- What ethical dilemmas does your topic raise?
- Based on what you have learned about ethics so far, how do you imagine some of the famous ethicists of the past, such as Aristotle, Aquinas, or Locke, would have to say about your topic?
Finally, find one good contemporary source related to your topic choice. Ideally, this will be a scholarly source from a journal, but it may also be a good-quality source from a contemporary periodical publication as well. Provide the full reference for this source in APA style, followed by a quick summary of a few sentences written in your own words.