Bribery in Society

Bribery is a huge ethical dilemma that exists in our society. However, despite the truth that bribery is usually viewed negatively, it can be addressed from different perspectives. This paper focuses on exploring whether or not bribes are a good or bad phenomenon with the use of ethical relativism concepts and on the basis of the selected articles.
In the first article, Walmart is said to have bribed bureaucrats in Mexico to expedite the method of acquiring building permits. Essentially, these bribes have accumulated over the years, which enabled Walmart to scale rapidly. However, if convicted, corporation executives face jail time of five years maximum. In the second article, economists in India argue that low-level bribery serves as a high-quality thing. It is evident from the dialogue that the particular businessman had to bribe all the way when growing his business. Moreover, he admits that even today he continues to give bribes more willingly considering that it positively impacts his company. According to ethical relativism principles, offering the bribes can be wrong or right, depending on the cultural settings (Poór 496). As such, if it acceptable in a particular society it is ethical for a business to use such practices, and vice versa.

In the United States, there are provisions in the Constitutions enacted to prevent both local and international corruption. Therefore, violating such laws in this country is considered a serious offense with a prison time as the punishment. However, in Mexico, where Walmart allegedly committed crime, corruption and bribery in personal life and business is acceptable (Melé and Carlos 683). In essence, if bribing few people during business operations will speed up essential requirements and help protect the company, then it is worth offering. Mr. Singh admits that although it was against his principles, he was forced to give bribes when starting his Internet business. The above examples illustrate cultural differences in as far as bribing practices are concerned.

Work Cited

Melé, Domènec, and Carlos Sánchez-Runde. “Cultural diversity and universal ethics in a global world.” (2013): 681-687.

Poór, József, et al. “Idealism and relativism in ethics: The results of empirical research in seven CEE countries & one North European country.” Journal of East European Management Studies (2015): 484-505.

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