Some take the view that the NFL has acted like the tobacco industry did when it was confronted with lawsuits seeking to prove to juries that smoking caused cancer.  Jesse Mez et al., Duration of American Football Play and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopothy, Annals of Neurology, 2019; DOI: 10.1002/ana.25611. Act utilitarianism makes the most ethical actions possible for the benefit of the people. Pamela R. Sailors, Personal Foul: An Evaluation of the Moral Status of Football, Journal of the Philosophy of Sport, 42(2): 269-286 (2015). Are you aware of comparable situations around the world where individuals and corporations that wish to be moral buyers should be similarly wary, knowing that their purchase price might aid the seller’s bad acts? It addresses the meaning of ethical terms such as right, duty, obligation, justification, morality, responsibility. A study of former NFL players found that those who began playing football before age 12 tended to show greater later-life cognitive impairments as compared to those who began after age 12.  Dave Bry, American Football is Too Dangerous, and It Should Be Abolished, The Guardian (UK), Jan. 4, 2016. "The greatest good for the greatest number" is a maxim of utilitarianism.  Michael W. Collins et al., Adolescent Sports Concussion, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Clinics of North America, 19(2): 247-269 (2008); Mark R. Lovell et al., Recover from Mild Concussion in High School Athletes, Journal of Neurosurgery, 98(2): 296-301 (2003). If you took a utilitarian approach to answering this question, what would your reasoning look like? It is the only moral framework that can be used to justify military force or war.  Ted Tatos, Playing Games with College Athletes’ Lives, The American Prospect, May 20, 2020. They’re all in good shape. Gammon, Katharine, “The Human Cost of Amber,” The Atlantic, Aug. 2, 2019. https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/08/amber-fossil-supply-chain-has-dark-human-cost/594601/, Grimaldi, David, “Amber,” Current Biology Magazine. In deciding whether it is ethical for you to buy amber from Myanmar, do you need to guard against the self-serving bias unduly affecting your decision? An example of rule utilitarianism in business is tiered pricing for a product or service for different types of customers.  Jacqueline Howard, These High School Sports Have the Highest Concussion Rates, CNN, Oct. 15, 2019, at https://www.cnn.com/2019/10/15/health/concussion-high-school-sports-study/index.html. feeling worried and guilty and this would ease his mind.  Kevin Seifer, Did the Helmet Rule Actually Work?  Matt Ventresca, The Curious Case of CTE: Mediating Materialities of Traumatic Brain Injury, Communication & Sport, 7(2): 135-156 (2019). Empirical research supports the notion that allowing children to engage in dangerous forms of play is key to their optimal development. Consumers are looking for companies that they can trust, and employees work better when there is a solid model of ethics in place.  Ingfei Chen, Exactly How Dangerous Is Football?, The New Yorker, Feb. 1, 2020. Myanmar amber is plentiful, high quality and contains inclusions within the resin. Riding a bicycle carries risk and not a whole lot of parents are not letting their kids ride a bike.  Jeanne Marie Laskas, Concussion (2015).  Center for Disease Control, at https://www.cdc.gov/headsup/basics/concussion_whatis.html. Chen also points to the uncertainties of the science, noting: “For now, these complexities make certain questions about the disease unanswerable. It is the only moral framework that can be used to justify military force or war. It is for them alone to point out what we ought to do, as well as to determine what we shall do. Utilitarianism can be used in any business decision that seeks to maximize positive effects (especially morally, but also financially) and minimize negative ones.  Ingfei Chen, Exactly How Dangerous Is Football?, The New Yorker, Feb. 1, 2020. Social justice is a concept holding that all people should have equal access to wealth, health, well-being, privileges, and opportunity. Relatedly, should fans of the game be ashamed of themselves? Some of the questions they wrestled with include: What constitutes "the greatest amount of good"? The term may also refer to pleasure or satisfaction that people derive from being somewhere. The more expensive upper-class seats help to ease the financial burden that the airline created by making room for economy-class seats. The word total is important here: if you act ethically according to utilitarianism, youâre not maximizing yourhappiness, but the total happiness of the whole human race. Do you think that the NFL would make more safety-related changes if white players dominated rosters? The NFL and universities, among others, urge no rash actions until there is more concrete proof of a causal link between concussions and adverse health outcomes. For a business to grow, it not only needs to increase its bottom line, but it also must create a reputation for being socially responsible. So, we just need to kind of put it in context.”. 3.  Ken Belson, Judge Approves Deal in N.F.L. Why or why not? 36 short illustrated videos explain behavioral ethics concepts and basic ethics principles. A 2007 study found that retired NFL players experienced levels of depressive symptoms no worse than those of the general population.  William Stewart et al., Primum Non Nocere: A Call for Balance When Reporting on CTE, Lancet Neurology, 18:231-232 (2019). How about the reverse—why do many people who believe football players should be free to decide what they do with their bodies take decidedly un-libertarian positions on issues such as abortion, marijuana legalization, and assisted suicide? 5. This is one of the limitations of utilitarianism. Utilitarianism is an ethical theory that determines right from wrong by focusing on outcomes. Regarding sports concussions, President Obama stated: “We have to change a culture that says ‘you suck it up and play through a brain injury…. Amber also plays an invaluable role in research. Russell, Children and Dangerous Sport and Recreation, Journal of the Philosophy of Sport, 34: 176-193 (2007). Employees and Employers. Ethics, Population Health Policy, and Sports-Related TBI, in Sociolcultural Examinations of Sports Concussions (Matt Ventresca & Mary McDonald eds, 2020); Alan Schwarz et al., N.F.L.’s Flawed Concussion Research and Ties to Tobacco Industry, New York Times, March 24, 2016. Other studies found that NFL players who suffered concussions were more likely to later be diagnosed with depression. Search for: Utilitarianism What is utilitarianism? Others suggest that the uncertainty favors taking actions now rather than waiting until too much damage is done, as happened with tobacco. But few would consider it an acceptable course of action, let alone the most ethical one. Our society allows people to voluntarily choose to undertake many risky professions, including coal miners, fire jumpers, soldiers, underwater oil rig welders, and others. We Know Little About the Long-term Effects of Concussions, Statnews, Sept.27, 2019. An NFL player who plays 24 games increases the likelihood of premature death by 16%. Alan Schwarz et al., N.F.L.’s Flawed Concussion Research and Ties to Tobacco Industry, New York Times, March 24, 2016. Some of these are high impacts comparable to those experienced in high school and college games.  J.S. These are the theoryâs central advantages: Clarity and simplicity. A Defense of a utilitarian approach to business ethics, written for Business Ethics: A Philosophical Approach Edited by Werhane and Donaldson. If option A will create more happiness (or less misery) overall than option â¦ In the wake of the recent pandemic, Oklahoma State head football coach Mike Gundy said “In my opinion, if we have to bring our players back, test them. While some researchers and universities feel as though they should refrain from making such amber purchases, their failure to participate enables many private collectors to remove collections from the public or to charge researchers an exorbitant fee for access. Explain. Utilitarianism is a theory of morality, which advocates actions that foster happiness or pleasure and opposes actions that cause unhappiness or harm. So, utilitarianism provides a basis for criticizing business behaviours that cause harm to anyone at all. Bry’s answer is that only the football players are being paid to do this “for our entertainment.”. Utilitarianism also has trouble accounting for values such as justice and individual rights. A study of former high school and college football players found that RHI exposure predicted later-life apathy, depression, executive dysfunction, and cognitive impairment. â¢ Analysis of the language, concepts and methods of resoning in ethics. If a healthy person wanders into the hospital, his organs could be harvested to save four lives at the expense of his one life. And How Will It Change in 2019?, ESPN, Aug. 19, 2019, at https://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/27372974/did-helmet-rule-actually-work-2018-how-change-2019. Not every business decision can be a win-win and in these circumstances Utilitarianism looks to the greater good for the business e.g.  Peter Benson, Big Football: Corporate Social Responsibility and the Culture and Color of Injury in America’s Most Popular Sport, Journal of Sport and Social Issues, 41(4): 307-334 (2017). Why or why not? ", John Stuart Mill had many years to absorb and reflect on Jeremy Bentham's thoughts on utilitarianism by the time he published his own work, Utilitarianism, in 1863. A public health professor has said that letting pre-teens play tackle football is “an abdication of moral responsibility for children’s welfare.”. Are the answers different for NFL players, college players, high school players, and under-14 players? Microeconomics is the branch of economics that analyzes market behavior of individuals and firms in order to understand their decision-making processes.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precautionary_principle. In a study of 14,000 NFL players, researchers found that even head impacts insufficient to cause concussions can mount up over the years, leading to CTE and premature death. Over two regular seasons (2012-2014), NFL players sustained 4,384 injuries, including 301 concussions. Cam-bridge: Blackwell, pp. Similarly, monopolistic competition teaches one business to flourish at the expense of others. The Kachin Independence Army, which includes ethnic minorities who live in the northern Kachin and surrounding regions of Myanmar, has been in armed conflict with the Myanmar government for the restoration of minority ethnic groups’ rights. There is no official state religion but the Myanmar government favors the majority Theravada Buddhism population. Reducing tackling in practices has reduced overall concussion numbers among high school players, even though the number of concussions in games has risen slightly.  Kathleen Bachynski, Youth Football is a Moral Abdication, The Atlantic, Feb. 1, 2020.  Steve Almond, Is It Immoral to Watch the Super Bowl?, New York Times, Jan. 24, 2014; Pamela R. Sailors, Personal Foul: An Evaluation of the Moral Status of Football, Journal of the Philosophy of Sport, 42(2): 269-286 (2015).  James P. Kelly et al., Concussion in Sports: Guidelines for the Prevention of Catastrophic Outcome, JAMA, 266(20): 2867-2869 (1991). https://dc.law.utah.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1121&context=ulr, Sokol, Joshua, “Troubled Treasure,” Science, May 23, 2019. https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/05/fossils-burmese-amber-offer-exquisite-view-dinosaur-times-and-ethical-minefield, Thiha, “Myanmar’s New Gold Mine is Dinosaur Amber, July 11, 2018. https://consult-myanmar.com/2018/07/11/myanmars-new-gold-mine-is-dinosaur-amber/, Xing, Linda et al., “A Feathered Dinosaur Tail with Primitive Plumage Trapped in Mid-Cretaceous Amber,” Current Biology, 26: 24, pl. Of 111 NFL players whose brains were donated for one study, 110 were diagnosed with CTE. Application of utilitarianism to business ethics.  Robert F. Heary et al., Is Youth Football Safe? At work, you display utilitarianism when you take actions to ensure that the office is a positive environment for your co-workers to be in, and then make it so for yourself. And concussion recurrence has been reduced, most likely by protocols guiding when it is safe to return to play. Utilitarian?  Studies indicate that there are helmets that may decrease concussions, but neuroscientist Julie Stamm says: “No helmet will ever be concussion-proof, because the brain still moves inside the skull. BUSINESS ETHICS :: Utilitarianism â¢ Introduction â¢ Jeremy Bentham â¢ Theory of Utility â¢ Types of Utilitarianism â¢ Some Criticisms â¢ Moral Dilemma Introduction Over the course of the next two lectures we will be looking at two of the most politically and philosophically significant â¦ Work in the 21st-century workplace is no longer merely a means to an end; it is meaningful and calls upon peopleâs ambitions, beliefs and passions.  David Gee, Doubt is Their Product: How Industry’s Assault on science Threatens Your Health, Journal of Public Health Policy, 29(4): 474-479 (2008). Although the appropriate amount of regulation and laws will always be a subject of debate, political and economic policies are geared primarily toward fostering as much well-being for as many people as possible, or at least they should be. Business Law and Ethics Case Study. When used in a sociopolitical construct, utilitarian ethics aims for the betterment of society as a whole. As such, it is the only moral framework that can justify military force or war. How is justice accommodated? For example, the government has made it difficult for Christian and Islamic groups to gain permission to repair or build new places of worship. All three?  Dave Bry, American Football is Too Dangerous, and It Should Be Abolished, The Guardian (UK), Jan. 4, 2016 (quoting CBS News quoting, in turn, Dr. John York). Where there are disadvantaged groups who suffer income inequality or other negative consequences because of a utilitarian-based policy or action, most politicians would try to find a remedy. Are college (and high school) players sufficiently mature to make reasoned judgments based on such disclosures? In utilitarian ethics, there are no shades of gray—either something is wrong or it is right.  Ingfei Chen, Exactly How Dangerous Is Football?, The New Yorker, Feb. 1, 2020. But few would consider it an acceptable course of action, let alone an ethical one. Utilitarianism is a section or a part of the consequentialism theory. Which ones? Utilitarianism is a theory of morality, which advocates actions that foster happiness and opposes actions that cause unhappiness. Utilitarian theory and business ethics Human approach towards anticipation for maximizing of pleasure and elimination of suffering and pain brings about the fundamentals established in the realm of moral philosophies that date back to a distant past (Robertson & Walter, 2007).  Atheendar S. Venkataramani et al, Association Between Playing American Football and Long-term Mortality, JAMA, 319(8): 800-806 (2018). Utilitarianism holds that the most ethical choice is the one that will produce the greatest good for the greatest number. Is this an ethical issue? However, many such studies were funded or carried out by the NFL, owners of NFL franchises, universities that earn millions of dollars from football, and other interested parties. If subconcussive blows are the cause of C.T.E., how much impact is too much? The mining of these amber specimens in Myanmar is the center of many legitimate and blackmarket sales to university researchers and private collectors alike. Utilitarianism holds that an action is right if it tends to promote happiness and wrong if it tends to produce sadness, or the reverse of happiness—not just the happiness of the actor but that of everyone affected by it. This statistic is up 61% from 2002-2007, perhaps reflecting an improvement of awareness and reporting. The action is described as the right one when it is beneficial for most people and has positive consequences. Many recent studies point to how dangerous football is to players’ long-term brain health. Do you agree? Bry’s answer is that it’s not the players who are immoral, it is the fans who are comparable to Romans sitting in the Colosseum watching lions devour Christians. An Analysis of Youth Football Head Impact Data, Neurosurgery (Jan. 2020), available at https://doi.org/10.1093/neuros/nyz563. Why or why not?  Jesse Mez et al., Duration of American Football Play and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopothy, Annals of Neurology, 2019; DOI: 10.1002/ana.25611. As with Benthamâs formulation, utilitarianism in business ethics is primarily concerned with outcomes rather than processes. Are there other cognitive biases and heuristics that might adversely affect your moral reasoning if you are not careful? Actions are right if they promote happiness, and wrong if they promote unhappiness.  Peter Benson, Big Football: Corporate Social Responsibility and the Culture and Color of Injury in America’s Most Popular Sport, Journal of Sport and Social Issues, 41(4): 307-334 (2017); Daniel Goldberg, What Does the Precautionary Principle Demand of Us? The Three Generally Accepted Axioms of Utilitarianism State That, Utilitarianism's Relevance in a Political Economy, Everything You Need to Know About Macroeconomics. Football causes more concussions than any other high school sport. An example of act utilitarianism could be when pharmaceutical companies release drugs that have been governmentally approved, but with known minor side effects because the drug is able to help more people than are bothered by the side effects.  Thomas L. Schwenk, Depression and Pain in Retired Professional Football Players, Medicine & Science in Sports & Leisure, 39(4): 599-605 92007)(but finding that when coupled with difficult with pain, problems with sleep and social relations often followed). One expert said “It really seems right now that if your [football] practices are highly controlled and reduced as much as possible and you only play four years of high school, your [CTE] risk is probably pretty low.”.  Although concussions can carry serious consequences, they are termed a “mild” form of TBI because they are not typically life threatening. A policy issue? In some cases, amber contains inclusions, such as insects, whole or parts of animals, and plants that are trapped and preserved. Comments (0) 1685 Words7 Pages. Which approach do you find more persuasive, and why? Moreover, utilitarianism is the most common approach to business ethics because of the way that it accounts for costs and benefits. These studies are broken down by football league level: Given the results of the studies above, it is not surprising that there has been a strong outcry against football. Support your position with data and facts. Utilitarianism also has trouble accounting for values like justice and individual rights. However, in 2017 the Myanmar government dropped leaflets from helicopters informing the population in northern Kachin that civilians and Kachin militants who remain in the region will be considered hostile opposition to the government military forces. Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is “brain degeneration likely caused by repeated head traumas.” Repetitive head impacts (RHIs) can cumulatively lead to CTE and early death, even though no single RHI results in a concussion.  Everett J. Lehman et al., Suicide Mortality Among Retired National Football League Players Who Played 5 or More Seasons, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 44(10): 2486-2491 (2016).  Stephen S. Hanson, ‘He Didn’t Want to Let His Team Down’: The Challenge of Dual Loyalty for Team Physicians, Journal of the Philosophy of Sport, 45(3): 215-227 (2018). 3352 (Dec. 2016). Children between the ages of 9 and 14 make up the largest cohort of football players in the U.S. Utilitarianism is a tradition of ethical philosophy that is associated with Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill, two late 18th- and 19th-century British philosophers, economists, and political thinkers. , On the other hand, while football helmets can prevent fractured skulls, they will likely never be able to prevent concussions. Explain. CEO may have his bonus taken away/salary cut during recession A limitation of utilitarianism is that it tends to create a black-and-white construct of morality.  Other people believe that media discussions have impeded needed change in minimizing sports violence. Explain. No, it’s not crazy because we need to continue and budget and run money through the state of Oklahoma.”.  Adam M. Finkel & Kevin F. Bieniek, How Public Helath Science Evaluates Evidence, Human and Ecological Risk Assessment: An International Journal, 25(3): 564-589 (2019).  Everett J. Lehman et al., Neurodegenerative Causes of Death Among Retired National Football League Players, Neurology, 79(19): 1970-1974 (2012).  Munro Cullum, Is Football Bad for the Brain? In the airline industry, for example, many planes offer first-, business-, and economy-class seats. Limited government is a political system in which legalized force is restricted through delegated and enumerated powers, such as The United States Constitution and Bill of Rights. Utilitarianism is a teleological ethical theory based on the idea that an action is moral if it causes the greatest amount of happiness for the greatest number of people. “Football is both notorious and cherished for its unapologetic, brute-force violence.” Players suffer bruises, lacerations, torn muscles, dislocated shoulders, torn knee ligaments, broken bones, internal organ damage, and, occasionally, even paralysis.  Dave Bry, American Football is Too Dangerous, and It Should Be Abolished, The Guardian (UK), Jan. 4, 2016.  Julie Mack, What Parents Need to Know about Football, Concussions and Head Injuries, mlive.com, Nov. 24, 2019, at https://www.mlive.com/news/2019/11/what-parents-need-to-know-about-football-and-head-injuries.html (quoting neuroscientist Julie Stamm).  Other studies have involved skewed samples, including one where all the NFL players’ brains had been donated because of mental declines that the donors had suffered before their deaths.. Vladislav Valentinov, The Rawlsian Critique of Utilitarianism: A Luhmannian Interpretation, Journal of Business Ethics, 10.1007/s10551-015-2786-y, 142, 1, (25-35), (2015). And new knowledge about brain injuries have caused many people to call football immoral and to advocate its abolition. [Reporting a concussion] doesn’t make you weak, it means you’re strong.” On the other hand, President Trump has stated that rule changes to diminish head injuries are “ruining the game.”, One scientist said: “Don’t forget there’s risk in everything we do. Utilitarianism is a specific type of consequentialism that focuses on the greatest good for the greatest number. Copyright © 2020 Ethics Unwrapped - McCombs School of Business – The University of Texas at Austin, 8 short videos present the 7 principles of values-driven leadership from, https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/08/amber-fossil-supply-chain-has-dark-human-cost/594601/, https://www.cell.com/current-biology/pdf/S0960-9822(19)31097-8.pdf, https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/2019/07/fossil-bird-in-amber-has-unusually-long-toes/, https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg24232280-600-blood-amber-the-exquisite-trove-of-fossils-fuelling-war-in-myanmar/, https://dc.law.utah.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1121&context=ulr, https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/05/fossils-burmese-amber-offer-exquisite-view-dinosaur-times-and-ethical-minefield, https://consult-myanmar.com/2018/07/11/myanmars-new-gold-mine-is-dinosaur-amber/, https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960982216311939?via%3Dihub, https://business.financialpost.com/commodities/mining/dodging-rumour-and-insurgency-the-hunt-for-burmese-amber-goes-to-the-heart-of-myanmars-turbulent-north, https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg24232283-300-it-is-time-to-bring-global-attention-to-the-trade-in-burmese-amber/, https://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/index.html, https://www.cdc.gov/headsup/basics/concussion_whatis.html, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/chronic-traumatic-encephalopathy/symptoms-causes/syc-20370921, https://www.dispatch.com/news/20191124/student-athletes-still-reluctant-to-report-concussions-nationwide-childrens-study-finds, https://www.cnn.com/2019/10/15/health/concussion-high-school-sports-study/index.html, https://www.mlive.com/news/2019/11/what-parents-need-to-know-about-football-and-head-injuries.html, https://injuryprevention.bmj.com/content/24/3/180.full, https://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/27372974/did-helmet-rule-actually-work-2018-how-change-2019, https://www.sportscasting.com/nfl-concussion-protocol-explained-how-does-it-work/, https://slate.com/culture/2015/12/the-truth-about-will-smiths-concussion-and-bennet-omalu.html, https://www.healthnewsreview.org/2018/01/sports-desks-drop-the-ball-on-big-concussion-story/, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precautionary_principle, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harm_principle, https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/2020/04/07/oklahoma-states-mike-gundy-says-his-team-needs-play-benefit-state-economy/. According to research by neuroscientists, “There seems to be greater consequences if you’re getting your head hit when the brain is rapidly developing [below age 12].”.  Professor Goldberg argues that “there is little evidence that such incremental changes [e.g., in tackling techniques] have a substantial risk-reducing effect.”. , A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is “a disruption in the normal function of the brain that can be caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, or penetrating head injury.” A concussion is a form of TBI where the blow causes the brain to move rapidly back and forth, bouncing around in the skull and suffering various types of structural damage.  Ernest L. Abel, Football Increases the Risk for Lou Gehrig’s Disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Perceptual Motor Skills, 104(3): 1251-1254 (20007).  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harm_principle. Some people accuse the media (and others) of hysterically overhyping the dangers of tackle football to the brain. In act utilitarianism any action is permissible given that it increases pleasure for the greatest number of people and a successful business does exactly this. Why, then, do you think they oppose letting adults choose freely to play football? The Advantages of the Utilitarian Philosophy in Business The utilitarian philosophy is more acceptable for the modern business as it can satisfy the needs of the stakeholders, despite the fact that either side may receive less profit. Jeremy Bentham describes his "greatest happiness principle" in Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation, a 1789 publication in which he writes: "Nature has placed mankind under the governance of two sovereign masters, pain and pleasure. A civil lawsuit by former players ] Ingfei Chen observed that Fisher-Price had been required to a! And religious conflicts resulting in government-enforced discrimination has its roots in 18th century Philosophy the debate over “ conflict ”... 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