A. Preliminary Questions
1. The behavior or action that I chose is gambling as it is the most relevant to me. Using my own reasoning, I would consider this action or behavior to be wrong. Basically, the Road of Caution states that when it is difficult to determine whether or not a act is wrong, it would be best to view it as something wrong. The act of gambling and whether or not it is morally right or wrong is still pretty ambiguous to me. For one, even the smallest and pettiest of bets are already considered to be forms of gambling, yet they essentially do no harm and, to others, are simple forms of leisure or entertainment, much like how I enjoy playing video games or listening to music. Gambling, however, can also be severe in a sense. A wrong act is defined as something that violates an accepted convention or norm and generally causes some harm to oneself, to others, or to the society. While gambling is considered to be normal for most people, I believe that gambling, over time, may harm oneself and others. The act may cause a person to become too competitive, thus affecting his or her relationship with his or her peers. The person may also experience an attachment and addiction to the act, which has negative effects on one’s life, such as excessive use of money in gambling. Therefore, while it is uncertain whether gambling is truly wrong or not, I believe that it is a wrong act because generally, it causes harm to the self and to others.
2. I believe that in some cases, gambling need not be considered bad or sinful. As I mentioned before, small bets are considered to be forms of pleasure, leisure, and entertainment for most people, and as a result, need not be considered sinful. This is because small bets are usually made with friends or with one’s peers, and because the act itself is sometimes considered to be an act of relaxation or bonding between friends, I really don’t think small or petty bets are sinful. While the Road of Suspicion states that we must cast some suspicion into our moral decisions that involve either pleasure or pain, going against small bets or not engaging in small bets doesn’t really have any negative effects or implications, which takes out the factor of pain in this road.
3. Based on my answers, I would consider myself to be a moral rationalist. Looking at my answers, I believe that my thinking process when it comes to moral decisions involves both general situations and particular situations. When facing certain moral dilemmas, I tend to look at the general short-term and long-term effects or implications first, then focus more on certain instances in my life when I’ve encountered similar dilemmas. These allow me to look at moral decisions or choices using different perspectives.
B. What if…?
[Insert name of friend], I don’t think you should gamble a lot anymore. Can’t you see that gambling has only brought you down all these years? I mean, it’s alright to have small or playful bets with us once in a while, but I don’t think that you’re living life properly when all you think about is gambling. You’ve already lost thousands of pesos in the act, and you’re starting to isolate yourself from your friends and family. You know that gambling will ruin your life at the rate you’re going, and you always have the freedom to stop, yet you continue to gamble anyway. Even if gambling is really fun for you, I think that the best choice is to abandon this hobby of yours.