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Is conscience a more reliable guide when compared to laws, rules and regulations in the context of ethical decision making. Discuss (150 words)

Conscience and laws, rules, and regulations serve as guiding forces in ethical decision-making. While both have their merits, there’s a debate on which is more reliable.

  • Conscience:
    • Personal and internal: Rooted in one’s beliefs and experiences.
    • Flexible: Can adapt to unique situations.
    • Subjective: Can vary among individuals.
    • Example: Mahatma Gandhi’s belief in nonviolence was a product of his conscience.
  • Laws, Rules, and Regulations:
    • External and codified: Established by society or organizations.
    • Standardized: Provide a consistent guideline for behavior.
    • Objective: Apply uniformly, regardless of personal beliefs.
    • Example: Civil Rights Act in the U.S. prohibited racial discrimination.
ConscienceLaws, Rules, Regulations
SourceInternalExternal
FlexibilityHighLow
Subjectivity/ObjectivitySubjectiveObjective
Influence byPersonal BeliefsSocietal Needs

While conscience provides an individualized approach rooted in personal beliefs, laws and regulations offer a standardized guideline for behavior. Ideally, a balance between the two ensures ethical decision-making that respects both personal values and societal standards.

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