Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Teenage Ethics

This survey about the ethics of American high school students has had a variety of reactions. Some highlights:
  • 30% of students claimed to have stolen from a store before.
  • 64% claimed to have cheated on a test (38% did so two times or more)
  • 93% claimed to be satisfied with their personal ethics and character, and 77% affirmed that "when it comes to doing what is right, I am better than most people I know."
Any thoughts? My initial reaction is that my generation--yes, I am part of this Gen Y or Millenial generation--is not ethically better or worse than previous generations; they're simply presented with different ethical dilemmas. Postmodernity also allows for a plurality of morality (if you read that phrase aloud, it's quite a mouthful). I'm not too worried if students have cheated once or twice on tests; I am worried that unethical actions will go unquestioned and won't be processed fully by the students, resulting in unethical, unevaluated lifestyles. There's a difference between cheating-and-learning-from-it and cheating-continually-as-habit, which this survey doesn't seem to cover.

How do we address this as the church, keeping a balance between legalistic moralism and unethical pluralism?

(ht to ypulse)

No comments:

Post a Comment