Colleges Refuse to Lead Community Ethics Development

Our academies of higher education are fine purveyors of knowledge. Yet, there is something missing. It has only been within the last twenty years that ethics was no longer stuck in a corner in the Religion and Philosophy departments of most major universities. Strikingly, the debate still rages among faculty and administrators over whether or not ethics can even be taught.

What is even more incredible is the turf wars among departments who can teach it and fail to see the ethical dilemma that little scenario creates. Colleges and universities alike have reluctantly been dragged into value-difference arguments and display what might best be described as a benign reluctance to teach ethics. They have no interest, nor do they wish to take the lead to teach applied ethics in their communities. In other words, in their minds, why teach what they believe is not teachable.

This abysmal record of accepting ethical accountability to lead community ethics development efforts is not unique to educational institutions. This universal systemic problem exists nationally and internationally among all organizations that influence the public lifestyle, underlying cultural morality, and day-to-day conduct.

Organizations concerned with the pressures of maintaining their own images of ethical propriety are pulling together increasingly disparate ideas of political correctness and what is, or is not, ethical. In defining their own conduct that should accompany grounded organizational ethical behavior has, unfortunately, created a whole new set of dilemmas for institutions pressured to step up to the plate.


                                                Leaders Fail Ethics 101