I think as a public servant it’s important to reflect over your etics. What are they and why? I have been close to the subject before when I wrote about why I likes my job. But this time I will try to describe my etics at work. You could say it’s a kind of utilitarian etics of duty. By that I mean that I try to do as good as possible for so many as possible by using the law as a liberating tool.
The utilitarian etic could be described as we should always act on a way that makes as good as possible for as many as possible. For me, in my daily action it’s about asking my self how can I make the day better for the person I meet. If I can act on such a way that the person have a little more goodness in their life after my action been made it’s a good action and something I should strive for.
But what is goodness? Goodness is maybe not the same as being dealt fairly with. It’s not the same as justice. But justice create goodness so I think that the American philosopher John Rawls definition of justice as fairness actually also is a good mapping for goodness. Because if we act just according to Rawls we will create goodness by our actions.
But I also believe in the importance of the law. To follow the law and punish those who don’t is one of the most important part of a society. It al fall back to the old customary law know as Pacta Sund Servanda (agreements most be hold). And for me those who break the law break the social contract. They threat the rights and goodness for every one and should for that be judged by their fellows. So by upholding the law, making it a tool for goodness I uphold the social contract and by that the rights and goodness for the weakest.
So by combining the idea of utilitarianism and the etics of duties I do think that I contribute to a better society not by accident but because I have been reflecting over my actions and ethics making my moral if not great so at least decent.