Ethical dilemmas make nurses encounter moral distress.

What is common to the two well-known cases is conflict. In eachcase, an agent regards herself as having moral reasons to do each oftwo actions, but doing both actions is not possible. Ethicists havecalled situations like these moral dilemmas. The crucialfeatures of a moral dilemma are these: the agent is required to do eachof two (or more) actions; the agent can do each of the actions; but theagent cannot do both (or all) of the actions. The agent thus seemscondemned to moral failure; no matter what she does, she will dosomething wrong (or fail to do something that she ought to do).

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Faustus and Shakespeare's Othello We can find major moral or ethical dilemmas in both Dr.

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With remorse or guilt, at least two components are present: theexperiential component, namely, the negative feeling that theagent has; and the cognitive component, namely, the beliefthat the agent has done something wrong and takes responsibility forit. Although this same cognitive component is not part of regret, thenegative feeling is. And the experiential component alone cannot serveas a gauge to distinguish regret from remorse, for regret can rangefrom mild to intense, and so can remorse. In part, what distinguishesthe two is the cognitive component. But now when we examine the case ofan alleged dilemma, such as that of Sartre's student, it isquestion-begging to assert that it is appropriate for him to experienceremorse no matter what he does. No doubt, it is appropriate for him toexperience some negative feeling. To say, however, that it isremorse that is called for is to assume that the agent appropriatelybelieves that he has done something wrong. Since regret is warrantedeven in the absence of such a belief, to assume that remorse isappropriate is to assume, not argue, that the agent'ssituation is genuinely dilemmatic. Opponents of dilemmas can say thatone of the requirements overrides the other, or that the agent faces adisjunctive requirement, and that regret is appropriate because evenwhen he does what he ought to do, some bad will ensue. Either side,then, can account for the appropriateness of some negative moralemotion. To get more specific, however, requires more than is warrantedby the present argument. This appeal to moral residue, then, does notestablish the reality of moral dilemmas.

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Friends and foes of dilemmas have a burden to bear in responding tothe two arguments above. For there is at least a prima facieplausibility to the claim that there are moral dilemmas and to theclaim that the relevant principles in the two arguments are true. Thuseach side must at least give reasons for denying the pertinent claimsin question. Opponents of dilemmas must say something in response tothe positive arguments that are given for the reality of suchconflicts. One reason in support of dilemmas, as noted above, issimply pointing to examples. The case of Sartre's student and thatfrom Sophie's Choice are good ones; and clearly these can bemultiplied indefinitely. It will tempting for supporters of dilemmasto say to opponents, “If this is not a real dilemma, then tellme what the agent ought to do and why?” It isobvious, however, that attempting to answer such questions isfruitless, and for at least two reasons. First, any answer given tothe question is likely to be controversial, certainly not alwaysconvincing. And second, this is a game that will never end; exampleafter example can be produced. The more appropriate response on thepart of foes of dilemmas is to deny that they need to answer thequestion. Examples as such cannot establish the reality ofdilemmas. Surely most will acknowledge that there are situations inwhich an agent does not know what he ought to do. This may be becauseof factual uncertainty, uncertainty about the consequences,uncertainty about what principles apply, or a host of other things. Sofor any given case, the mere fact that one does not know which of two(or more) conflicting obligations prevails does not show that nonedoes.

This paper tries to apply the moral theories of John Stuart Mill and Immanuel Kant is solving an ethical dilemma.
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Opponents of moral dilemmas have generally held that the crucialprinciples in the two arguments above are conceptually true, andtherefore we must deny the possibility of genuine dilemmas. (See, forexample, Conee 1982 and Zimmerman 1996.) Most of the debate, fromall sides, has focused on the second argument. There is an oddityabout this, however. When one examines the pertinent principles ineach argument which, in combination with dilemmas, generates aninconsistency, there is little doubt that those in the first argumenthave a greater claim to being conceptually true than those in thesecond. Perhaps the focus on the second argument is due to the impactof Bernard Williams's influential essay (Williams 1965). But noticethat the first argument shows that if there are genuine dilemmas, theneither PC or PD must be relinquished. Even most supporters of dilemmasacknowledge that PC is quite basic. E.J. Lemmon, for example, notesthat if PC does not hold in a system of deontic logic, then all thatremains are truisms and paradoxes (Lemmon 1965, p. 51). And givingup PC also requires denying either OP or D, each of which also seemsbasic. There has been much debate about PD—in particular,questions generated by the Good Samaritan paradox—but still itseems basic. So those who want to argue against dilemmas purely onconceptual grounds are better off focusing on the first of the twoarguments above.

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discussion about moral dilemmas and ..

Ethicists as diverse as Kant (1971/1797), Mill (1979/1861), and Ross(1930, 1939) have assumed that an adequate moral theory should notallow for the possibility of genuine moral dilemmas. Onlyrecently—in the last sixty years or so—have philosophersbegun to challenge that assumption. And the challenge can take atleast two different forms. Some will argue that it is notpossible to preclude genuine moral dilemmas. Others will arguethat even if it were possible, it is not desirable to doso.

Moral dilemma and essay

Ethical Dilemmas in Nursing, Essay Sample - EssayBasics

Therefore, the obligation rests on healthcare professionals faced with ethical dilemma in their practice to make moral decision which should promote and enhance health ( Rumbold, 1999; Sim, 1997).