Assignment 2: Incorporating Kohlberg?s Stages of Moral Development into the Justice System Due Week 7 and worth 120 points
Imagine you are the chief of police. As the chief of police, you will need to ensure that your law enforcement officers lead ethical careers.
In order to prepare for this assignment, review Chapters 7 through 9 in the textbook.
Then, research Kohlberg?s stages of moral development and find at least two (2) relevant articles that discuss Kohlberg?s theory,
Means vs. Ends, and Kantian ethics.
Write a two to three (2-3) page paper in which you:
1. Identify and discuss the three (3) levels of Kohlberg?s stages of Moral Development, and explain how you would address each level within your department.
2. Explain how your officers can use Kohlberg?s Stages of Moral Development to evaluate three (3) types of criminals who are at different stages of moral development.
3. Illustrate two to three (2-3) ways in which you would address self-interest and pursuit of pleasure to prevent police corruption.
4. Identify and discuss at least three (3) Prima Facie Duties that you believe all of your law enforcement officers should fulfill.
5. Support your position statement with two (2) relevant and credible references, documented according to SWS.
(Note: Do not use open source sites such as Ask.com, eHow.com, Answers.com, and Wikipedia.
Lawrence Kohlberg’s theory of moral development is a stage theory that describes how people progress in their understanding of right and wrong. Kohlberg identified three levels of moral development: preconventional, conventional, and postconventional. Each level is divided into two stages.
At the preconventional level, people make moral decisions based on their own needs and desires. They are concerned with avoiding punishment and gaining rewards.
Stage 1: Obedience and Punishment Orientation
People at Stage 1 believe that right and wrong is determined by whether or not an action will result in punishment. They obey rules to avoid getting in trouble.
Stage 2: Instrumental Purpose Orientation
People at Stage 2 believe that right and wrong is determined by whether or not an action will benefit them. They do things that are in their own self-interest, even if it means hurting others.
At the conventional level, people make moral decisions based on what they believe is expected of them by their family, friends, and society. They are concerned with maintaining social order and doing what is right.
Stage 3: Good Boy/Nice Girl Orientation
People at Stage 3 want to be liked and accepted by others. They make moral decisions based on what they think will make others happy.
Stage 4: Law and Order Orientation
People at Stage 4 believe that right and wrong is determined by the laws and rules of society. They obey the law because they believe it is important to maintain social order.
At the postconventional level, people make moral decisions based on their own personal beliefs and values. They are concerned with justice and fairness, even if it means breaking the law.
Stage 5: Social Contract Orientation
People at Stage 5 believe that laws are important, but they can be changed if they are unjust. They are willing to disobey the law if they believe it is necessary to uphold a higher moral principle.
Stage 6: Universal Ethical Principles Orientation
People at Stage 6 believe that there are universal moral principles that apply to everyone, regardless of the laws of their society. They are willing to sacrifice their own interests for the sake of upholding these principles.
How to Address Each Level in a Law Enforcement Department
As a chief of police, you can address each level of moral development in your department by providing training and education that is tailored to the specific needs of your officers. For example, you can provide training on the laws and regulations that your officers are expected to uphold. You can also provide training on ethical decision-making, so that your officers can learn how to make decisions that are consistent with their own moral beliefs.
How Officers Can Use Kohlberg’s Stages to Evaluate Criminals
Kohlberg’s stages can be used by law enforcement officers to evaluate criminals. By understanding the stage of moral development at which a criminal is operating, officers can better understand the criminal’s motivations and how to respond to them. For example, an officer who is dealing with a criminal who is operating at Stage 1 may need to focus on deterring the criminal from committing future crimes by emphasizing the potential consequences of their actions. An officer who is dealing with a criminal who is operating at Stage 2 may need to focus on building a relationship with the criminal and demonstrating that the officer is interested in helping them.
How to Address Self-Interest and Pursuit of Pleasure to Prevent Police Corruption
Self-interest and the pursuit of pleasure are two of the most common factors that contribute to police corruption. As a chief of police, you can address these factors by creating a culture of integrity within your department. This means creating a culture where officers are held accountable for their actions, and where there is a zero-tolerance policy for corruption. You can also provide training on ethical decision-making, so that officers can learn how to make decisions that are consistent with their own moral beliefs.
Prima Facie Duties
Prima facie duties are duties that we have in all situations, regardless of the circumstances. Some examples of prima facie duties include the duty to tell the truth, the duty to keep promises, and the duty to help others in need. As a chief of police, you can promote a culture of ethics within your department by emphasizing the importance of these prima facie duties.
Kohlberg’s theory of moral development is a valuable tool that can be used by law enforcement officers to improve their understanding of the criminals they encounter, and to promote a culture of ethics within their departments. By understanding the different stages of moral development, officers can better understand the motivations of criminals, and can respond to them in a way that is both effective and ethical.