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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Amidst Car Culture, Breaking The Law Is “Ethical” |

Driving at night – Photo by Dennis Wilkinson

Here in Canada – and especially in Ontario – you could be cruising along the highway at 125km/h in a maximum 100km/h zone – and many other drivers will still be buzzing past you.

Bicycling on an empty sidewalk, or rolling through a red light at an empty intersection on a bicycle evokes sharp criticism in the media, usually by journalists who are clinging to their car culture and have probably never ridden a bicycle in a city before.

When entitled drivers chastise me about bicyclist behaviour, I ask them if they ever break the law when they drive. First they say no. But when you query them about speeding, they say “well, everybody does that. It’s harmless”.

I am currently enrolled in an online university course in business ethics. While reading the course materials tonight, the text discussed how people can obey the law, but be unethical. Similarly, someone can break the law, but still be acting ethically.

This is of course true. But where they went wrong, in my opinion, is in the example they provided.
From the course text:

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