Gone baby Gone is a movie about deep philosophical arguments when a little girl gets kidnapped. Ethical issues arise when Patrick and Angie discuss whether they should take the missing girl case. Angie does not want to take the case because she is afraid that she might find an abused or dead child. Patrick does not want to find her dead either but since they know people in the neighborhood and they have the skills they should. Angie is taking a utilitarian approach of getting the most pleasure and benefit from the situation by not taking the case. Patrick is taking a Kantian ethicists approach. He takes the case justified by reason that they need to find out the truth, which is the moral thing to do. The truth is plays a big role to Patrick in the movie since people keep lying to him.
When Patrick shoots the pedophile he acts in an egoist manner. He knew he could get away with it. He was so angry and sick that the little boy died he had to satisfy his own needs. He did not let the courts decide the fate of the pedophile he acted from his own interest. He questioned his actions after and feels bad about it after, but he still shot the pedophile. The cop Remy Bressant argued with Patrick, saying it was the right thing to do. He acted from an intuitionist view. He saw countless criminals being let off for crimes they committed so he did not feel bad. He understood that the pedophile was guilty and he got what he deserved. He did not need to reason nor could understand why someone would.
From the viewpoint of Aristotelian virtue ethics Patrick Kenzie is a good person. Patrick promised Amanda’s mother that he would get back her daughter and he did. That was his own moral choice and he would do regardless of the cost. It was his good character, which virtue ethics is based on that obtained Amanda. Another example of his good character would be taking the case. He did want to find Amanda dead but he would still take the case. His moral choice outweighed the consequences, which is how a virtue ethicist would feel.
Patrick uses the golden mean theory in dealing with the decision to bring Amanda back home. He did not want the conspirators to have Amanda that would be excessive. He did not want her Mom to have Amanda because that would be too deficient. So he decided to let her mom have her so this way he could check up on her. He took a “middle path” that he thought would suit best the situation.
The First option in Gone Baby Gone is you can call the police and they will take Amanda back to her Mother. Her mother is a drug addict, she is poor and she just cares about herself. The second option in Gone Baby Gone is you can turn the other way and let Amada live a life with fake parents but who will care more for her. The fake parents would be conspirators in her abducting. The utilitarian theory would take the second option. This way everybody is happy. Everyone that died would not have died. Amanda would not know. Amada would have had a more stable life. The Kantian Ethicists answer would be option one. They would make the right choice that they would want to be consistent.
Kids should not be taken away from their Mothers; therefore Amanda should not have been taken from her mother. If you make exceptions it is not fair for the kids who are actually taken away from their mothers in different situations. There would be no respect or order so there are no exceptions. Angie and Morgan Freedman follow the utilitarian approach. They both know that Amanda would be better off with Morgan Freedman. Patrick could not live with the fact that he let a child be kidnapped when he knows kidnapping is wrong regardless. He follows the Kantian ethicist theory. If I were Patrick I would of done exactly what he did although I would of not let Amanda be back with her mother. I would let child services deal with the problem because a kid should never have to grow up in a Jerry Springer environment. I agree with the Kantian Ethicist theory. “Act only according to that maxim whereby you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law of nature.”
Alcohol and Drug abuse should not be in a kids upbringing. Amanda should not be with her mother. I think the only reason why Patrick let Amanda back to her mother is because he had a relationship with her and grew up with her.
By Joey Walker
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