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A glance at today’s workplace reveals that diversity exists everywhere. No longer is the workplace segregated by color and neither are women relegated to their stations behind stovetops. The changing face of today’s workplace shows the progress that minorities and gender relations have taken over the years. The problem, however, is that while this may certainly be a welcome development it has also led to unforeseen problems. This brief discourse shall provide a view of the impact that affirmative action and similar policies has had on society in light of the theories of applied ethics.

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While these policies have been conceptualized to encourage equality, they have also encouraged detrimental behavior. In understanding this theory, it is first important to discuss applied ethics. Applied ethics is widely considered as among the best moral philosophies for making business decisions. As one of the theories that is able to examine moral controversies, applied ethics is also able to relate this to social responsibility in capitalist systems.

It is widely used in analyzing the business or ethics in certain workplace policies (Barcalow, 2006). In applying this to affirmative action, it cannot be sustained that this has furthered the cause of minorities or even provided an adequate remedy. The reason for this is that affirmative action becomes counter productive since it invariably leads to reverse racism, such as the case of Bakke, or even reverse discrimination (Dworkin, 2002).

As such, this does not hold true to the principles of applied ethics which dictate that there should be equality. Affirmative action occasionally leads to the more qualified individual being passed over because of hiring quotas and workplace policies (Cowan, 2002). This problem is not consistent with maintaining proper business ethics. It is this type of thinking which applied ethics allows especially when dealing with pragmatic situations in the workplace or in business. Works Cited: Affirmative Action.

Ed. Robert Fullinwider. 2005. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Stanford University). 24 March 2008 < http://plato. stanford. edu/ entries/affirmative-action/>. Barcalow, Emmett (2006) Moral Philosophy Wadsworth Publishing Company ISBN-10 0495007153 Cowan, J. L. “Inverse Discrimination. ” The Affirmative Action Debate. Ed. Steven Cahn. New York: Routledge, 2002. 5-7. Dworkin, Ronald. “Bakke’s Case: Are Quotas Unfair? ” The Affirmative Action Debate. Ed. Steven Cahn. New York: Routledge, 2002. 3-4.

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