Ethical Dilemmas: What Should You Do?

Practice going to stores with her. In other words, plan some short trips to a store with the sole intent of practicing good behavior (don't have any other goal in mind). Set the rules of behavior (no crying, screaming, etc. -- be specific). Figure out an attractive reward to give if she complies and the trip is successful. If she does not, simply return home and try the same thing the next day. Work up to longer outings slowly and do not vary the rules or the consequences. Don't get emotional yourself; be steady in following the program!

Dan wrote, "As defined in the dictionary, ethics refers to the rule of conduct recognized in respect to a particular class, group or culture. As a minority, I feel offended when racial slurs are spoken in a public forum. But as an American, I understand that freedom of speech is covered under the 1st Amendment. If such behavior is considered within the realm of 'the rule of conduct', does it really make it right? And can ethics and morals really go hand in hand?"

Keating: Freedom of speech has its limits; certain forms of speech are restricted but you'd need an attorney to look into this one.

Darcy from Breakenridge, Col. wrote, "I would have no problem stepping in on an abusive situation, but I find it difficult to step into a social situation that is annoying but not harming anyone (the kids or cell phone situations). Is it appropriate to say something if someone is doing something you just don't like? Where is the line of freedom? Who am I to tell anyone there actions are inappropriate? Should I just be worried about my action?"

Keating:Tolerance is a lynchpin of society; it's a loss when individuals from different backgrounds can't compromise with one another in social settings. But it is also a loss for children and adults when their behavior falls far outside the norm and no one informs them about it. They may continue to behave in ways that bother people and suffer negative evaluations because of it.

Kelly from Lake Tahoe, Calif. wrote, "My sister hires illegal immigrants to do her yardwork. This makes me angry, because I am opposed to illegal immigration. I find that it has changed our relationship, because I fee so strongly about this. I don't know what to do. Help?

Keating: It sounds like you feel responsible for your sister's actions. You are not; they are hers.

Harvey asked, "Why is it any worse for a person sitting by themselves on a cell phone call then a group of 2 or more people in a conversation that can be overheard?"

Keating: GOOD question. Most people assume its because cell phones provoke users to speak in an usually loud voice. I think the reason is more than that.

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