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Morals vs Ethics - there is a difference.

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posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 06:40 PM
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Today I watched a movie and there was a scene that took place in a college classroom. (The movie is Remember Me. I'd never seen it before, and it came out in 2010. )

The class was "Global Politics." The professor asked the class: "In the wake of recent terrorist attacks, what do you guys think?: Is there a place for a discussion about ethics? When we're talking about the root causes of terrorism?"

A student answered: "Isn't that a moral question, not an ethical one?"

The professor asked "how so?"

She said:

"Morals define personal character, and ethics the standards of behavior expected by a group."

The professor asked her:
"And in the end, personal character is more important?"



So - here I am inspired to start this thread. Tell me, ATS members, which is more important?
(Not going to spoil the story just yet by telling you what she said in response (just that she was right).)

Just wondering, all - in your opinion, which is more important? And WHY?


edit on 10/22/2015 by BuzzyWigs because: (no reason given)




posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 06:48 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

Can we also say that morals are beliefs while ethics are more closely associated with behavior?

In that light, its important to say what we mean and do as we say.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 06:48 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

A group is made up of individuals with similar personal characteristics. So ethics would be a reflection of shared morals.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 06:52 PM
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a reply to: intrptr


Can we also say that morals are beliefs while ethics are more closely associated with behavior?

Mmmm, no.

We are talking about "personal character", not "beliefs." Personal character versus the standard of behavior expected by a group.



Thanks for responding, though!
Appreciate it!



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 06:54 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

I'm not too sold on defining morals and ethics in that way but, between "personal character" and "standards of behavior expected by a group"?

Personal character is required to discern the worth of the standard behavior expected by a group. I would rather have a decent human being (personal character) who doesn't understand what is expected of them than to have a rotten person who follows all the rules.

Kids would normally fall into that first category which is why adults often mistaken their "misbehaving" as behavior of "bad" children.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 06:54 PM
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a reply to: DBCowboy

No, I have to disagree. Morals are not dictated by the group; morals are within us.

"Codes of Ethics" are social constructs.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 06:55 PM
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There is no blanket morality. It's determined by Culture. Same with ethics.



parenthood.library.wisc.edu...



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 06:55 PM
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Going by their dictionary definitions I'd say morals are more important personally...

They rarely exist without ethics...


But if I were for some reason taken out of society guided by ethics to govern collective morals...

I'd still live by my own.


Morals. imo.
edit on 22-10-2015 by CharlieSpeirs because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 06:58 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs


"Codes of Ethics" are social constructs.

Behaviors.


eth·ics
ˈeTHiks/Submit
noun
1.
moral principles that govern a person's or group's behavior.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 07:02 PM
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I believe morals to be more important. You're saying ethics is just what is expected among a group of people. So I think it would be more important that people have strong moral convictions. I grew up reading comics, good vs evil. I admired these heroes who put themselves in harms way to protect the less powerful. Whether it be children , women or elderly people I would stand up and try to defend them if they were facing physical harm. My friend was getting threatened by a guy who was into gangsta rap. I thought of getting into a fight with this kid but bided my time and watched him when he was around my friend. He just got arrested for death threats over the phone to my friend , he said he was going to shoot him up with an AK 47 . That problem resolved itself for now but I gave friend advice to get in shape or start doing push ups or jogging.

Now a days people kill without remorse and to try to be cool. So I would say a stronger personal conviction is better than just what is accepted generally or assumed for a bunch of people.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 07:02 PM
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a reply to: intrptr

Yes, and? They are "behaviors" that are expected by a group.

"Morals" come from the individual's self. They do not require a "group" to "expect."



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 07:06 PM
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Since ethics is more or less moral philosophy and involves the systematizing of morals, it gets very difficult to see how you can have ethics or an ethical system or even understand ethics without having some form of personal morality to begin with. Now just because you have personal morality does not mean it has to agree with the ethics of your society at large as ethics tend to be based on the common morality of the society around you, but you would still be able to understand the ethical arguments presented and disagree or agree.

But, take away personal morality or even the ability have morality, and you really could care less about ethics, see psychopaths. They may pretend to be moral/ethical, but they really could care less except as it lets them pretend to fit into larger society and manipulate others.

*Note I am not responding directly to the OP, but to the discussion as presented which interests me.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 07:07 PM
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a reply to: Silenthill666007

I believe morals to be more important.
I agree - might as well say so right now.


You're saying ethics is just what is expected among a group of people.


That's the premise of the OP, yes. It's what the movie script said, though - not me personally. I'm asking for opinions from other members.


So I think it would be more important that people have strong moral convictions.
I think so, too.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 07:09 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

I'm really glad to read your response, and thank you for being here.


But, take away personal morality or even the ability have morality, and you really could care less about ethics, see psychopaths. They may pretend to be moral/ethical, but they really could care less except as it lets them pretend to fit into larger society and manipulate others.

*Note I am not responding directly to the OP, but to the discussion as presented which interests me.

Duly noted.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 07:32 PM
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I forgot to say, today in this day and age we have gay people fighting for equal rights and the right to live their life. I had a friend who was gay and got a cousin who is a close friend of the family her family so we call them cousins. If you see anybody being harassed or something just step in and say , leave them alone or something. Everyone has their own opinions of same sex attractions and the people who are, but it's the right thing to do.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 07:37 PM
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a reply to: Silenthill666007


in this day and age we have gay people fighting for equal rights and the right to live their life.

Yes, we do.

And they have that right. They aren't hurting anyone.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 08:47 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

Okay, whatever.

You have personal ethics, too. Based on your own moral code.

Group ethics is more like mob mentality. Like Rules of Engagement (ROE) that armies claim to comply with. Its their ethical code, based on instruction and training.

During war, the first thing to go out the window are ethics and morality.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 08:50 PM
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I'd have to say morals because ethics can vary from group to group but morals stay constant, at least in my experience they do. Staying true to yourself is more important than following the herd.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 08:56 PM
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a reply to: intrptr

I'm rather confused by your posts, intrptr.

Yes, I agree, "group ethics" is "mob mentality."
Or "group mentality." When a person's MORALS reveal to them that the "group mentality" is wrong (after experiencing how the "group" behaves, and what the group expects), "morals" (personally held standards of right and wrong, as opposed to "group" standards of right and wrong) win.

For truly moral people, anyway. In my case that is exactly what has happened (more than once) - I realized the "group ethics" were actually "immoral." I couldn't buy in to them anymore. I had to leave.



posted on Oct, 22 2015 @ 09:13 PM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs

Thats cool. You're more concerned with group behavior… ethics. Morals don;t matter much in that dynamic. Its whatever the loudest loud mouth decides is moral and the group acts upon that moral code (or lack of it).

I was defining the two earlier; one is belief and the other action. Two very different things. You said… no.

I hold that ethics are more important than morals, actions speak louder than words or belief.



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