Deontology Discussion Board
As Joe is trying to maintain order and follow orders to not allow more people into the already overcrowded Superdome, thousands more flock to the only place they believe they will be safe and where they expect to find shelter, food, clothing, medical supplies, and water.
Fights break out as people are turned away. Joe has a major problem on his hands. He has orders to turn people away so that those already inside the Superdome can be adequately cared for. Many others are outside violently oppose his orders. How can Joe follow his ethical beliefs?
How can you help Joe deal with this situation?
If Joe believes it is his duty to serve by following orders, what should he do?
What are Joe’s choices?
How would a deontologist, like Joe, make this decision?
It is Joe’s duty to come up with a plan on how the people outside can be calmed down to avoid chaos which may lead to the destruction of the premises and people being hurt. It is also his role to figure out how they can be organized such that the supplies are also dispensed with them easily, even without having to enter the super dome. Shelter, food, clothing, medical supplies, and water are all necessities that any human being cannot do without. According to Max (2016), a deontologist such as Joe moral action is guided by the rules. Therefore, Joe should do his best to make sure that no one gets into the super dome.
Joe can inform one of the members of the top management in charge of the operation on the ongoing chaos. Since people will more likely calm down when they get reassurance from the heads of the operation, Joe can request the head of the operation or member of the top management to talk calmly to the crowd and reassure them that they will still get the amenities.
Also, Joe can come up with strategies that can help even the people outside to acquire the supplies without having to go inside the dome. These can include having some of the personnel distributing a given proportion of the amenities to those outside and ensuring that the process is fast such that more people are served. The people can be informed of these strategies, which will, in turn, calm them down as they organize themselves to be served.
As the saying goes, “You catch more flies with honey than vinegar,” It would be advisable if Joe first talked calmly to a few members of the crowd. He can explain why they are not being let in and reassure them that they will also get the supplies as well. Also, he can ask the small group for the suggestions on how that outside can acquire the supplies as well.
Having a small proportion on his side will help in assuring the rest of the group that he has their best interests at heart. The small group can then assist in calming down the rest of the group by taking turns to speak to the crowd using the public address system. Joe can give the suggestions to the person in charge of the operation to see if they can be acted adopted.
Joe has the choice either to chase the people away, to convince them to be calm or just to let them in. Chasing the people away would be morally wrong since the people would lack basic amenities which would probably lead to starvation, diseases and eventually death. These consequences can, in turn, be blamed on Joe. Also, Joe would most probably feel guilty for the consequences.
Letting the people into the dome would be against the deontological ethics. Deontologists believe a moral behavior is one that follows the rules, obligations or duty (Carl, 2010). This would lead to Joe not only failing to fulfill his duties but also being at risk of losing his job. Calming the people down would be the optimal solution as they could eventually get the service they require and Joe would have fulfilled his duty.
Since his duty is to maintain order and to prevent people from getting into the super dome, Joe can calm the people down by talking to them calmly and reassuring them that they will all get a chance to be served. To create a good rapport with the mass, he can ask them for their suggestions regarding the situation. He can ask the crowd for suggestions on how they think they can be served better. Joe can reassure them that these suggestions will be put into consideration.
Morality demands that Joe does his best to ensure that the people outside get the supplies as well. Therefore, Joe can talk to the head of the operation on the suggestions given. He can also suggest that some of the personnel have a stand outside where the supplies can also be disbursed to those outside the dome. The crowd can be organized into a line to make it easier to serve them.
Carl Martin Allwood (2010) Decision Making, Dordrecht Springer: Netherlands
Max H Bazerman2016 Judgment in managerial decision making John Wiley: London