Philosophical Perspectives on Religion, Ethical and Moral Values (11)

Deontic Structure & Normativity

A Christian’s conscience is God’s Policeman, a faculty of man’s Spirit that monitors his obedience to the will of God. The idea of the social context leads Wallace to believe that reciprocal (or bipolar) normative structures form the key to understanding deontic structure. He traces discretional (aspirational) normativity to the local social context. And deontic normativity to reciprocal structures between individuals. Applying reason in such a structure gives the character of an obligation, in contradistinction to the ‘free standing’ forms of aspirational normativity. Deontic normativity seems to be more resistant to social influence and is based on reciprocal structures between individuals (Wallace, 2012, 29).

The influence of the local social background is an essential aspect of studying corruption. Rampant corruption allows unchallenged social context resulting in the devaluation of ‘discretional normativity.’ Thereby engendering a more significant measure of tolerance towards corruption. This horizontal posture is apparent in his notion of the origin of deontic normativity as formed by a nexus of individual human relationships. Humankind may choose to obey or disobey ‘general’ and ‘contingent’ deontic norms. His freedom resides in obedience to deontic norms, and, conversely, disobedience (as manifested in acts of corruption) leads to loss of freedom and enslavement in a secret link of dishonesty. The ‘normative power’ of contingent deontic is subject to personal conceptions of right or wrong.

Stoker (1970, 182) states, “on account of man’s freedom of choice for his actions … man is, and must be, accountable for his actions.” In this setting, the influence of the social context derived from humankind’s philosophical thoughts to the corruption of the conscience is considered primarily necessary.

Philosophical habituation provides the enabling environment for corruption to grow. Democracy expects the Presidency to provide accurate information to the people. Sasha Obama had an examination and needed to remain in Washington to study. Some teachers in a secondary school in Washington fixed an examination, which conflicted with the Presidential family’s schedule, and the President’s schedule had to take a back seat. Some Political leaders have to draw weighty lessons from this scenario.

***join me tomorrow for the final piece, the Conclusion.

Leave a Reply