Friday, September 13, 2019

Ethics Assignment Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 4000 words

Ethics Assignment - Essay Example This is the salient issue for Rockwood's suit against Becton Dickinson: The distinction between rights and responsibilities. Case Facts Rockwood's suit against Dickinson has a long history, but the issue is simple. Dickinson did not create a wide enough range of sizes for their patented product, causing hospitals to instead embrace unsafe practices with needlepricking instead of the Dickinson safety syringe. Rockwood alleges that doing so led directly and predictably to injury. The legal issues behind this are obviously complex, but the ethical issues are possible to discuss. The assumptions behind the allegation of Dickinsons' liability are clear. Ethical Issues Issues at stake here are 1. Public health. It's not just that Rockwood got sick, but she got sick with a communicable disease. 2. Corporate strategy. Corporations need to pursue a wide range of strategies in the marketplace without fear of eventual suing simply because they didn't offer a product. 3. The bounds of the law. L aw should only be able to go so far in legislating morality. Ethical Dilemma Should the Court violate Dickinson's potential right to pursue their product array as they see fit, or should they take them to task for failing to protect Rockwood? Analysis A rights-based analysis would deliver differing opinions depending on the rights they enshrine. Someone emphasizing rights to life, health or responsible treatment might argue that Rockwood not only has a right to pursue a suit and receive compensation but also an obligation to do so. But many rights-based analyses such as market libertarians' analyses would emphasize the rights of the company to provide the services they wish. Advocates like Milton Friedman, Nozick and Murray Rothbard would argue that Dickinson had made a calculation, even if misguided or potentially immoral or callous, that they would not provide the services and goods they created with their own hard work in a particular fashion. This is their inviolable right, in t his view, and thus they cannot be sued or brought to task legally in any fashion. Dickinson was satisfying their only obligation worth discussing: The obligation to their shareholders. Under this view, an individual has absolute control over their labor and property. Whatever they made under conditions of justice (e.g. no theft, fraud or embezzlement) is theirs. Dickinson had no responsibility to provide a different product. It is absurd to take them to court for not providing a product! They did no wrong and in fact performed their duty: Enlarging market share for shareholders. A utilitarian analysis, on the other hand, would point out that what Dickinson did was not in the interest of the greatest good for the greatest number. Dickinson had no compelling reason: They could have made more money by providing their safety needles in different sizes. The court should rule in the favor of Rockwood, in the utilitarian view, as a matter of social policy and justice: What Dickinson did wa s unethical and inappropriate. A utilitarian might end up admitting that, under the law, Rockwood had no case, but still argue that Dickinson had committed wrong. Distributive justice is concerned with the distribution of goods across society

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