Ethics Discussion Board wk5

Omelas City's Dilemma

Omelas City is in a predicament. Humans continue to live in confusion. They feel compromised by their consciousness; they have the option of walking away, as only a few do, or they can become like a child in a prison cell who never matures, remaining faithful but stuck. They are tortured by their awareness of the reality of their situation.

The Metaphorical Omelas City

In the story, I see it as a metaphor for the Omelas city (family) and the abandoned child growing up, questioning what they previously thought was beautiful and reacting to the moral challenge of this. The suffering child represents the shadow of Omelas' ideal city (family). The child as well may be the family scapegoat who fails to escape order which suppresses them, unlike those who walk away and remains within the family, like a child being tortured. A utilitarian approach may sacrifice the wholeness for convenience while for Kantian deontology is concerned with what Omelas city is doing but not the consequences of their action because the child is the one who makes them find happiness.

Social Responsibility and Allegory

Our duty to society mirrors our duty to ourselves. Social responsibility and good habits are essential to an integrated and happy human psyche. The allegory interpretation is the juxtaposition of the child that represents the distinction existing between the rich and poor in a capitalist society.

Relevance to the Modern Human Condition

I would do nothing because the story is relevant to the modern human condition. We are people in Omelas city because every day we walk away from the sick, orphans, and slaves. The ones who walk away are just as guilty as the ones who stay. According to utilitarian and Kantian ethics philosophy, people's happiness matters a lot over the consequences that come with bad actions.

The Decision to Walk Away

In my view, the people in the Omelas city are leaving the city and hope to find a better place. They can do nothing because they will risk the happiness of the community. They walk away, put out of their mind and never look back though with guilt believing it is not right.

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