The “injustice” Objection to Classical Utilitarianism

There are times when you think about a situation and wonder what you should do to get a favorable outcome. You often think about both sides of the possible outcome before making your final decision to act. But, a theory based on early English philosophers and economists dating back to the 18th and 19th century tends to look at this type of situation from one standpoint. Except at this point, your actions may have consequences being considered that is either positive or negative. In other words, this theory explores positive actions based on consequences expected to follow.

This concept may have a form of validity to it, but others can find it confusing which is understandable. The concept includes examining options or reasoning of the situation at hand. You can identify good and bad actions you could take, think about all options, and think about the end result and its value. Then, you decide to do an action based on the highest value or good or bad it may bring. The problem here is that some people may not like the outcome, and the person making the decision may not care to consider the thoughts, feelings, and reactions of others. You may not be the only person dealing with consequences stemming from your final choice of action.

This concept has helped researchers over the years look deeper into actions that were carried out in prior years such as slavery, murder, and rape. In some cases it has helped people make challenging decisions even in situations that seemed immoral. Actions such as stealing or lying may not be considered right, but when this theory is applied it may actually give more intuition on why such actions were right or wrong. Sometimes it is a matter of considering personal circumstances when thinking about morals. Some researchers feel the capability of suffering is something most people are expected to deal with, but others wonder if it is simply a matter of having a voice.

Ones actions may carry a great deal of significance, especially if they have good intentions. In some cases having good intentions may result in a negative outcome you did not intend to happen. Most people would think to do the right thing based on the situation presented. But, even though you are expected to do what is right, you may have a conflict with moral reasoning that argues against what is right and wrong.