Prior to watching the film The Insider, what were your thoughts on ethics?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Naturally, as with any question like this, I think that there is going to be some level of divergence in answer.  Simply put, I think that everyone is going to have different thoughts about ethics, ethical responsibility, and the idea of "the whistleblower."  At its core, the ethics that are being forced is what happens when the choice is not between "good" versus "bad," but rather "good" versus "good."  In my mind, I understood, prior to seeing the film, that such choices are agonizing because both elements are right.  They are painful choices because something is being lost. After seeing the film, I still cleave to this idea because in seeing how both Wigand and Bergman must deal with their own ethical challenges of incommensurate notions of the good, ethical choices become difficult.  I think that this is where the fundamental challenges lie in this situation.  Before watching the film, I understood the painful ethical choices that are forced when two "goods" are at stake and this becomes magnified by the dilemma that the film poses.  The film details ethical challenges in the same way in suggesting that deep reflection and personal commitment seems to be the only way out of an agonizing situation where two equally desirable, but ultimately incompatible courses of action reside in ethical choice.


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