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Ethicist Raises Moral Quandaries

June 19, 1997

"Conscientious Objector" (June 8) appears well-intentioned, but the quiz had very poorly designed questions. One pitted duty to children against duty to government, in the guise of "temptation to cheat." Another had survival in conflict with fairness, again in the guise of "cheating."

Duty, fairness, survival and truth are all vital ethical principles. They need to be clearly presented and a balance found between them, not lumped together. Ethics can keep us sane--when we are clear on the values at stake.

Let's have more articles that present ethical systems and reasoning.


Santa Monica


I am getting really tired of rich elitist individuals like Michael Josephson who think they are some authority on how the rest of us should live.

In case he'd like to know, we have an extremely unequal economy that has forced many people who are poor and middle class to compromise their morals and ethics in order to get by. These aren't horrible people. They're just trying to survive.

Josephson feels that you should never lie on a job application, but tell that to someone who may lose their home. Maybe Josephson needs to go after his rich and powerful peers instead. I certainly see a lack of morals and ethics there.




Six of the seven situations presented in the "ethics dilemmas" test were actually questions of how subservient to the self-serving needs of powerful business and government institutions an individual is willing to be. The situation of the miscalculated restaurant check was the only scenario in which the reader's actions could have a serious impact on another human being.

No matter what terms he uses to promote his philosophy, Josephson is a promoter of the fascism that is sweeping over America.


Long Beach

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