How does Kantian ethics determine what we ought to do? Kantian ethics, also known as deontological ethics, is a moral theory developed by German philosopher Immanuel Kant in the late 18th century. Kantian ethics is based on the idea that moral decisions should be made based on a universal moral law, rather than on the consequences of an action. Kant argued that when making ethical decisions, people should act in accordance with a moral principle known as the Categorical Imperative. The Categorical Imperative is a moral law that states that one should “act only according to that maxim whereby you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law” (Kant, 1785). In other words, when making ethical decisions, people should consider whether their actions would be acceptable if everyone acted in the same way. This means that when deciding what we ought to do, we should ask ourselves whether our actions would be acceptable if everyone else did the same. Kantian ethics also emphasizes the importance of respecting the autonomy of others. Kant argued that it is wrong to violate someone’s autonomy and that we should respect the rights of others when making ethical decisions (Kant, 1785). This means that when deciding what we ought to do, we should consider whether our. Cont…
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