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Ethics Scrapbook Paper

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Essay title: Ethics Scrapbook Paper

As a team we were assigned the project of creating an ethical scrapbook, along with an accompanying paper. So the purpose of this paper is to expand on the information contained within our team scrapbook. More precisely we will be answering a set of four ethical questions, which we as a group have taken the time to sit down and discuss.

Our first question and issue discussed deals with the subject “Good Samaritan”. As a team we had to decide should all jurisdictions have a “Good Samaritan” law requiring an individual to help another if they are able. With the exception of our dear sweet teammates Richard, this question was a definite no brainier for our team. Without thought or time wasted debating one another, we all agree (except Richard) that yes there should be a “Good Samaritan” law. We felt that if individuals knew there was a law that allows them to help others in a time of need, perhaps more people would be willing to get involved when witnessing someone in need of help. However, our friend Richard strongly opposes a “Good Samaritan” law and feels that it would only promote vigilantism. Within our team, individually we have done numerous things that would be considered acting as a Good Samaritan. Such as helping out car accident victims, helping a mom and son being fought by a large group of boys, attempting to catch an individual who tried to break into a neighbor’s house, saving people trapped in an apartment building fire, rendering first aid to victims of gunshot wounds, and helping a mom to find her lost child. As for the question, have any one of us failed to act where an individual needed help, well let’s just say that we did not all agree on this question. Some of us (at times) have failed to help others out. While some of us have never failed to help someone else out when that person or persons needed help.

Our next question and issue to discuss was should vigilantism be permitted when the criminal justice system fails. Now because we have two police officers within our group, we felt that this might just be a tricky question to answer. As it turns out it was the easiest topic to discuss. As a whole we feel that no, vigilantism should not be permitted when the criminal justice system fails. For the most part we feel this way because we think that individuals would use this as an excuse to take the law into their own hands. However we do all agree that there are certain situations when vigilantism seems justified. Take for example this story shared with us by our group member Tony: An 84 year old World War II veteran was a victim of two home invasions and was assaulted twice. The police who patrolled the area could not catch the neighborhood thugs. The 84 year old vet had had enough. The four neighborhood thugs broke in for a third time but the outcome was different. The neighborhood thugs were trapped in the house and the 84 year old vet shot all four, one thug died. The 84 year old vet was not charged by the prosecutor’s office. Quietly I cheered for the 84 year old vet (Potts, 2007, Personal Statement).

Next we were asked, historically (in our opinion) has civil disobedience been effective in changing the law. Our teammate Nechelle had this to say, “In my opinion civil disobedience has not been very effective in changing the law. I say this solely due to the fact that I cannot think of any laws that have been changed mainly due to someone that has violated that particular law” (Holloway, 2007, Personal Statement). As for the rest of the group we all agree that yes, civil disobedience has been effective in changing certain laws. Our main reason would be because politics has gotten involved. We feel that civil disobediences such as the bus boycotts and the marches and protests of the 1960’s were very effective in bringing about changes in laws. The second part to this question is what laws do we disagree with or would consider violating in order to change. As a whole we are all in disagreement with any law that gives criminals rights, majority tax laws and certain marriage laws that have been currently added. Also the law against certain sex offenders, that state that they must register on the sex offender list. The reason we choose these laws would be, 1. We believe it should be the opposite, once you commit a crime your rights should be taken away. 2. We don’t think it is fair to work hard for your money then have the government take a percentage of it. 3. Same sex marriage just should not be allowed and 4. Being charged with consensual sex with a minor does not make you a sexual predator.

Our final question to discuss is: What conditions exist in the various professions (other than Criminal Justice Professions) that contribute to the commission of unethical behavior? As we carefully discussed this issue, we realized that there are just many conditions within too many professions. So we decided as a team to only

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