Pat is unemployed and homeless. Pat's child hasn't eaten in two days. Pat steals food from a nearby grocery store to feed their child. Is Pat acting ethically?
Pat is an imbecile for being homeless and with a child
Pat has failed, thats my answer
Pat is the child
Pat is the parent.
I know, but for acting like a child in a position in which his/her wealth was either nonexistant ( was homeless when had child) or insecure ( was not homeless when had child) then he is the child, he's failed at life, he created another person and took them into an environment where they are at risk of starvation among others. Pat is the child
Pat should have killed the bourgeoisie, put the kulaks in gulags, and seized the means of production.
In the US it's not hard to find a soup kitchen or go to a homeless shelter
Ethics are relative. "Business ethics" exams are sponsored by cocoa cola for the UFCW grocery Union in California. They claim that the number one loss in revenue is worker theft. The grocery store maintain policy whereby the workers are required to throw any food with a slight blemish away into a locked dumpster. Grocery stores throw a ton of food away everyday and the police prosecute the hungry for "stealing" the food from the dumpster.
To me, the person stealing from the dumpster is in the right and the unethical practices are those mandated by the owner who's intention is to maximize profits and not feed the hungry
In making these decisions Pat is being irresponsible and selfish and not thinking in the best interest of the child. Pat's strongest stumbling block is pride. There are food banks everywhere in America all you have to do is ask. And food banks are only one example option of many.
Pat should go to jail for letting his kid starve for 3 days and the kid to social services
Wouldn't Pat not paying for food possibly jeopardize the person selling the food?
Though I strongly believe that theft is morally wrong, I do believe that there is a point when theft can become a more justifiable act, especially one's life condition becomes jeopardized. In Pat's case, is theft morally wrong? Yes. However, can I be mad at Pat for taking care of her child in the only way she can? No.
That depends entirely on Pat's level of intelligence and/or education. If Pat honestly feels and knows no better than it is most certainly ethical for Pat to steal to feed the child.
Amazing "comments" from a country that considers itself Christian !!!
Read your bible people and consider what would Jesus think of your harsh uncompromising comments and views.
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Charity is everywhere.
Yes and no. Pat is in an impossible situation. Stealing is unethical but your highest priority is to your child.
Pat should have contacted a social service agency for help before reaching this point.
Too many options for hungry children (in this country) to see this behavior as acceptable.
Pat is acting ethically. However, they should try to, if they can, get a job and/or find a shelter for them and their child.
Why did he have kids if he cant take care of him.
He had a home and a wife, she died after an extended illness for which there is no cure, he lost his job caring for his wife and child. They were evicted from their home, his child is fearful of losing the father after so much loss. The father has no one to care for the child while he looks for a job.
I'm not sure why he doesn't know about the free foods all around him.
There is no reason to steal in this country for food. There are options.
It's unethical, but that shouldn't stop someone from protecting their child. It's one of those greater good scenarios.
Almost every medium sized church has some kind of food pantry which is free to everyone.
Is Pat unemployed by choice and is there any resources around that could help him and his son out of their difficult times, making it unnecessary to commit a crime? If yes to either then yes he is acting unethically if no then I believe he is and is acting in his child's best interests.
What the fuck? No one is homeless by choice.
Does he just not want to work? There's people like that are there not? There's also junkies who would rather be homeless and be able to get drugs then have a job and house.
Actually not true, a news team in Seattle once talked to a homeless man and he had a couple interesting things to say. At first he lost his job and couldn't afford a place anymore so he became homeless. He then made his way to Seattle and had been living their since. He now has a job but even though he could afford to get a place he decided he liked being homeless so he just kept living as he did even though he doesn't have to. So yes some people due choose to be homeless, it's just a small group.
Yes. In the law of human survival, and the law of what is most humane. Legally no.
Pat needs to go to protective services, that help those in need.
Every city provides for our most needy!
If you aren't financially capable of supporting yourself and a child and giving them a good quality of life, don't have kids.
What if you were able to and then you went bankrupt because of illness, or the stock market, or a natural disaster, or war, etc...
Mom ... how many thieves fit into your tiny little box? The vast majority of the truly homeless are there because of their poor life choices. The virtuous poor don't stay that way!
Many are veterans.
And the original question didn't say how the person ended up homeless. I was just asking whether there is a difference. I actually said it wasn't ethical to steal. I, however feel it is sometimes understandable. Even if I end up homeless because of my own choices, does that mean my child should starve to death? Many "pro-life" people answer this the same way as the original post I commented on...they care about whether a kid is born, but not fed. They care about the pain and or future of a fetus, but not the actual child the fetus becomes. I am pro-choice for this very reason. I believe it is less of an atrocity to terminate a pregnancy than the starve/neglect/abuse a child.
Mom ... "many" veterans? Come on, you're better than this! Yes, it is a tragedy that some veterans are homeless. But understanding why they become homeless is essential to solving the problem! Vets who are homeless are battling some other issues. The VAST majority of veterans return with honor, make good choices and are NOT homeless!
No...I didn't say many veterans are homeless...I said many of the homeless are veterans. Two different things.
Mom ... if you end up as a parent and homeless because of your lifestyle choices, then you are a bad parent. It does not justify stealing. It suggests that you should stop making poor -- most likely selfish -- life choices and consider the needs of your child.
It does NOT justify stealing.
Mom ... you're attempting to suggest that you're the compassionate one, when condoning theft to sustain bad choices is as selfish as it comes. A person who's homeless in the US is that way by choice, and most often because of some addiction.
They are not well-suited to be a parent as they are hurting their children by their poor example. It's time for family to step in and take the child to give them a stable environment until the parent can overcome their addictions and provide a stable environment.
Most people that are homeless have ended up there for the similar reasons as vets. Many were abused, are bi-polar, have PTSD, etc... many are LGBTQ and were kicked out of their homes by their parents. Many grew up in homes that were horrible. Poverty to the point of homelessness is usually generational. Generational poverty is extremely difficult to get out of. Read Ruby Paine.
Mom ... these individuals are in no shape to be parents, are they! Your excuses for their poor lifestyle choices doesn't help them!
I agree. They should not be parents. But they are. So, should the kid be starved to death because of their parents' choices/situation? Also....most homeless people don't have family to ask. They you there didn't have family, their family is in as bad a shape as they are, or they have completely lost contact with the family.
Mom ... you realize that you're arguing a ridiculous position, right? Of course a responsible parent would not put their child into that position in our country. A responsible parent who found themselves in a bad situation would think first of the needs of the child and place then in a loving and caring environment. That is the first responsibility of a parent. It does NOT justify stealing.
Please continue to justify the unjustifiable with increasingly pathetic scenarios. The key is that a good parent doesn't put their child in those situations.
Logically and morally ridiculous if you really think more about it.
Stealing to stay alive is perfectly ethical.
No it's not. Just ask for help.
It's ironic that someone with the tag of "outlaw" would comment on the ethics of the law.
There's nothing ethical about stealing for whatever the reason! The scenario is nonexistent today. Any virtuous person who is done on their luck will have a community around them to help. The scenario is missing the addiction or other poor lifestyle choices to make it a valid case.
Think...this is not true. Many inner cities and rural areas don't have the same resources as more affluent areas. If you believe this to be true...you live in a bubble. If everyone around you is impoverished....there is little to. I support system. Read Ruby Paine.
Mom ... what you may not know is that I grew up in the projects. I have literally Ben there and there is simply NO excuse. You can't make a pathetic enough scenario to override my own experience.
I KNOW for a fact that the cases you cite are simply excuses covering for port lifestyle choices. The truly pathetic thing is when people --like you -- provide cover for those poor choices and thereby trap kids!
The kids should be rescued from their parents' poor choices. Hopefully by loving family.
There are too many resources out there for Pat not to have to steal so there is no excuse for it.
Pat is not acting ethically, but it is understandable.
That can apply for public assistance and get emergency food stamps on the spot.
Maybe Pat A. Had no access to an abortion clinic or the Plan B pill.
Or B. HE didn't wear a condom and inadvertently or purposefully impregnated a woman who was NOT ready to parent a child.
Neither, clearly, have the skills necessary to keep a human being alive. As that's all parenting is!!!!! Keep it alive Pat!
Well let's say Pat's child was born in a mostly stable home inn 2006. 2008 rolls around and he gets laid off, loses his home and his wife gets scared and runs off. He's tried every available avenue but since he has no permanent address he can't get assistance. If he lives in a rural area he could be 50+ miles from the nearest church or non profit equipped to deal with this situation. In 2017 Pat Jr. is 11 and still totally dependent on Pat. That complicates things a lot.
Joseph, absolutely and well said. Fortunately this is a mythical scenario, however I know huge swaths of our country are struggling. It's unfortunate that children pay the price in these inopportune times. Mindful reproduction is the key.
Pat can ask for food
Pat should have gone to the manager and showed his hungry kid to him. Then ask, please for the child. He will not be turned away.
Assuming that is absolutely the only option
Guilt is a powerful emotion. Pat is acting unethically since he is taking what doesn't belong to him. In his situation, he can ask for help from several non-profit organizations. Also, Pat is ultimately accountable for his employment situation. If he is disabled, he should apply for benefits.
There are other avenues...but no if that was his last resort.
Why doesn't Pat have food stamps?
Hard to do if you have no proof of address.
Did Pat try to apply for a job at the grocery store? 👀🤔
If its a case were theres no other option, which im assuming thats the case, then yes. But with all oppurtunities and ways to help get people back on there feet in this country, i think they could find a way
Pat is a loser. Waiting two days to feed your child is child abuse. He can go to any church and they'd feed him. Almost any restaurant would too.
Pat should've been knocking off grocery stores yesterday.
Given the social welfare nets we have in this country, both public and private, no.
Ever heard of a homeless shelter? They have food there.
I highly doubt most of you who are saying "it's unethical" and "he should get a job" have ever been poor. If you had then you'd be a little more sympathetic.
In most cases Pat has sold Pat & Pat's kid's food stamps for today's drug fix.
Why don't they teach ethics in schools?
It doesn't seem like the concept is well understood.
The child needs to eat. He is probably at a loss for what to do.
Only if he tried the legal avenues of getting food like WIC
WIC is only certain foods, and you would have to have a refrigerator to store some of the items they provide. WIC is also only for those kids that are underweight, the last time I heard about it. You also have to have proof of address to apply for social services.
Many homeless shelters allow you to receive mail at their address to account for this.
If the homeless shelters are full, that does you no good.
What if Pat is homeless and unemployed because he is too lazy to work? Is it still okay to steal?
But if you say that about every person then no one gets help. A country is only as well off as it's most disenfranchised person.
Do I get to make the decisions for this person? Or am I expected to simply pick up the check after this person continually makes poor choices?
Government cannot create equality of income because people are not equally competent financially.
This isn't about government. It simply asks if he was right or not.
Which is why I was wondering why you brought up "a country is only as good as it's most disenfranchised person." What does country have to do with making a simple moral decision?
Semantics? 🤷♀️ Really?
You're getting up on your hind legs because you disapprove of a rhetoric terminology use when applied to situational ethics...?
Good job targeting what really matters here-- by sniping on someone's choice in wording.
What are you talking about Still? He brings in government to rebut my statement and then instead of making a legitimate argument complains I mentioned government.
Just because you say the word country doesn't mean you have to be talking about a government.
Country: a nation with its own government occupying a particular territory.
you took the individual situation and justified your answer based on society, then complain when I point out how society has no obligation to care for you.
Probably ethical given the circumstances, however Pat must've made bad decisions to end up in that situation.
Not true at all
Most homeless adults in America aren't making taking the necessary steps to improve their situation.
Most are looking for jobs but some have accepted the fact that nobody is going to hire someone who hasn't bathed or washed their clothes on months
It's been said that the vast majority of Americans are only one or two months away from homelessness. If you don't have the savings to pay ALL your bills for at least 6 months, and you lose your job, you can be homeless within that amount of time.
I meant to say 1 or 2 month's PAY away from homelessness. Sorry!
No. Jean Valjean can go to hell.
Gotta do what you gotta do.