This is a big question in my mind lately. What is more important the society that a person resides in or the individual. Today in our ethics class we discussed a fictitious vignette about a study on cancer. The researchers were studying a hypothetical drug that was curing some kids but others were getting sicker and dying. All of the kids were terminally ill. The question is do we stop research because of the few terminally ill children that are dying sooner than expected even though the drug is beneficial and saving others. This is the whole idea of what is more important society or the individual.
When we are creating our characters we need to understand their viewpoint on this. We need to know what they would do in certain ethical dilemmas. Would they stop the study because of the harm being done to the few or would they continue because the benefit outweighs the cost of the few. This can greatly influence how they react in certain situations. Will they forget the world because their family is in dire trouble or will they say it is more important to save the world. We see this all the time in the different shows that we watch.
I suggest to truly get to know our main characters we should put them in hypothetical situations where they need to make ethical decisions. Make sure that they are not easy dilemmas to solve but that they make you really evaluate the values of your character.
What ethical dilemmas do you find your characters in?