Have you ever been stuck between a rock and a hard place? My Office is right next to the Director’s Office. I hear a lot of things that I can either:
A) Keep to myself, stay out of the situation and let the action play out.
B) Tell the people it’s going to affect, but possibly get myself into trouble with the upper brass.
I want to help my fellow co-worker, but I also want to keep my good status with my employers. That, in essence, is a moral dilemma.
The book Moral Reasoning, by Victor Grassian (Prentice Hall, 1981, 1992), addresses moral dilemmas. Here are a few to consider:
1. A Father’s Agonizing Choice
“You are an inmate in a concentration camp. A sadistic guard is about to hang your son who tried to escape and wants you to pull the chair from underneath him. He says that if you don’t he will not only kill your son but some other innocent inmate as well. You don’t have any doubt that he means what he says. What should you do?”
2. The Fat Man and the Impending Doom
“A fat man leading a group of people out of a cave on a coast is stuck in the mouth of that cave. In a short time high tide will be upon them, and unless he is unstuck, they will all be drowned except the fat man, whose head is out of the cave. [But, fortunately, or unfortunately, someone has with him a stick of dynamite.] There seems no way to get the fat man loose without using [that] dynamite which will inevitably kill him; but if they do not use it everyone will drown. What should they do?”
3. A Poisonous Cup of Coffee
“Tom, hating his wife and wanting her dead, puts poison in her coffee, thereby killing her. Joe also hates his wife and would like her dead. One day, Joe’s wife accidentally puts poison in her coffee, thinking it’s cream. Joe has the antidote, but he does not give it to her. Knowing that he is the only one who can save her, he lets her die. Is Joe’s failure to act as bad as Tom’s action?”
Today, corporations are given 14th Amendment rights which legally makes them a “person.” Legally a corporation has to do whatever they can to increase profits for their shareholders. So ask yourself this, in this global economy, do corporations really want to make things that can improve our lives, but could possibly hurt their profits? Or are they stuck in their own moral dilemma?
If you want to read more on Moral Dilemmas, go to
And for my own moral dilemma I will say this, number 1 through 3 was copied directly from the site above, hence the quotes; and regarding the first paragraph, I ended up keeping my mouth shut.