Situational Ethics:
Rights and Freedom

What is right and wrong as well as one's freedom of action may depend on the situation as to whether the same action creates or cancerizes time. This follows the a posteriori determination of what is a right or freedom. Consider the following:

  1. Freedom of Speech: In the classical example of a crowded theatre, one should yell fire if one sees fire but not yell fire if there is no fire. In the former situation, motivating people to rapidly exit a firebox may lead to deaths from trampling, but fewer than if everyone gets trapped in the theatre. In the latter, no one is going to die from a non-existent fire but some may be trampled to death by someone calling "wolf."
  2. One should not lie: One should tell the truth unless the truth would harm you because the listener is not an honest, moral person. To wit, hypocrisy is justified in the face of ignorance. If a person will ignore the truth in such a way as to unjustly harm you then you should be a liar.
  3. Predestrians have the right of way: Cemetaries contain the bodies of people who thought the law was on their side when they irresponsibility crossed a busy intersection. In the end, of their right of way one could say they were dead right.
  4. The driver on the right has the right of way: Unless they knowingly allow an accident to happen for which they will be cited for failure to avoid an accident.
  5. Cruise ship morality: Many cruise ships are like bars in the last hour before they close where anything goes moreso than at the beginning of happy hour. However, if the ship is sinking, one should not be in the bar. Activities permissible on a cruise ship are not so permissible on a cruise ship sinking.

One's rights and freedoms are dictated by the situation. The situation should always be viewed from the perspective of Mother Nature who observes the morality of more time.  As a rule, most moral codes are consistent in their application, e.g., thou shall not lie, steal or kill. However, there are exceptions to most rules, exceptions which one should be careful in applying.

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