I believe I have faced a variety of decisions in my personal life where my values have played an important role in the outcome. I am currently facing such a situation that I have recently made a decision upon, one that pitted my personal desires against the desires of my family. I have a natural interest and love for engineering. However, my parents own a family business and want me to work in it when I am finished with my education. As much as I love engineering, I recently came to the decision that I would work in the family business after earning my degree. While deliberating on this decision, a variety of values played a role in shaping my ultimate decision. One of the biggest of these was my love for my mother and father whose support has enabled me to further my own ambitions and academic pursuits. I felt that I owed them a familial and a financial obligation to use my educational skills they paid for me to acquire to help them and the family business. I was disappointed I could not pursue my own interest, but when I thought about how my decision to help my parents would help my entire family I felt better. I recognized that if I devoted myself wholly to the family business, I might be able to enable future generations of family members to gain an education, maybe even a future engineer! Thus, I would say the ethical principle that I would say applies to this and similar decisions is as follows: In decisions that pit family obligations against personal desires, the choice that promises the most opportunistic future should be adopted.
The following three principles have been articulated at this point:
Decisions that an individual makes must be based on whether or not they bring happiness to the individual, not based on whether or not they bring happiness to others.
Difficult personal decisions should not be made without deliberation and trusting one's instincts in the final analysis is often best.
In decisions th...
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