----------My discussion post, with references in case you want to check my work :)---------------------
Chapter 1 explores various means and tools for working through ethical decisions. Which of those do you find the most useful or compelling, and why?
I found the idea of Standards of Conduct to be very intriguing. I think this can be a tricky situation to maneuver through. Our textbook states “When the rules change, or the shared values disappear, problems emerge” (Wicks et al. 2010). While reading my Facebook feed the last couple of days, I find a great number of my friends up in arms about the recent ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby being exempt from certain portions of Obamacare based on religious freedom (Gerstein and Nather. 2014). Regardless of how I personally feel about this issue, I find it interesting that so many companies are coming under attack for upholding their idea of ethics, dignity, and integrity.
It is widely known that Hobby Lobby is a Christian owned company and holds Christian values at the heart of their business. This has come into question for other companies too. Ethics made headline news when Chic-Fil-A came under attack for their moral views also. In a New York Times article, entitled A Chicken Chain’s Corporate Ethos Is Questioned by Gay Rights Advocates, the restaurant change was hailed as “among only a handful of large American companies with conservative religion built into its corporate ethos” (Severson. 2011). The company came under attack by the gay rights community because the company sponsored a marriage seminar put on by an outspoken anti-homosexual organization (Severson. 2011). This caused some to criticize the chain and its patrons as “anti-gay” (Severson. 2011). However, the article went on to say the company president put out a statement saying “we serve and value all people and treat everyone with honor, dignity and respect” (Severson. 2011).
It appears, to me, more and more these days that we cannot disagree with each other and still be generally good people. Our textbook talks about open societies embracing differences of opinions (Wicks et al. 2010), why can’t we have differences of opinion and still coexist with each other? Why can’t a business run on their ethics without treading on someone else’s rights or feelings? I feel as though, in the case of Hobby Lobby, if an employee wants the contraceptive care option and cannot get it through his/her employer, he/she has the freedom to find an alternate employer or purchase his/her own health insurance to cover that portion of his/her health. Much like I have to find a health insurance that meets my needs or I have to cover the cost myself.
Overall, I think it is becoming more and more difficult for companies and even individuals to have differences of option that go against the opinion of the masses, or those who are the loudest. I think we, as a society, need to embrace differences of opinion not as an attack against us personally, but as a different way of thinking.
Gerstein, J & Nather, D. (June 30, 2014). Hobby Lobby Decision: 5 Take Aways. Politico. Retrieved from: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/06/hobby-lobby-supreme-court-decision-5-takeaways-108467.html
Severson, Kim. (January 29, 2011). A Chicken Chain’s Corporate Ethos Is Questioned by Gay Rights Advocates. New York Times. Retrieved from: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/30/us/30chick.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
Wicks, A.C., Freeman, R. E., Werhane, P.H., Martin K.E. (2010) Business Ethics: A Managerial Approach, New Jersey: Prentice Hall.