PART ONE: THE MORAL SIDE OF MURDER
If you had to choose between (1) killing one person to save the lives of five others and (2) doing nothing even though you knew that five people would die right before your eyes if you did nothing—what would you do? What would be the right thing to do? Thats the hypothetical scenario Professor Michael Sandel uses to launch his course on moral reasoning. After the majority of students votes for killing the one person in order to save the lives of five others, Sandel presents three similar moral conundrums—each one artfully designed to make the decision more difficult. As students stand up to defend their conflicting choices, it becomes clear that the assumptions behind our moral reasoning are often contradictory, and the question of what is right and what is wrong is not always black and white.
 You drive a car 60mph, your breaks are dead and you see 5 workers working on the track just in front of you. You are sure to kill all of them if you crash into them. Meanwhile, on the sidetrack there is only one worker. Your steering wheel works - what would you do?
 You are a doctor in an emergency room, six patients come to you. One severely injured, 5 moderately injured. You could spend your whole shift operating on the severely injured guy. but meanwhile the other 5 would die. You can of course save those 5, but then the severely injured one dies - what would you do?
PART TWO: THE CASE FOR CANNIBALISM
Sandel introduces the principles of utilitarian philosopher, Jeremy Bentham, with a famous nineteenth century legal case involving a shipwrecked crew of four. After nineteen days lost at sea, the captain decides to kill the weakest amongst them, the young cabin boy, so that the rest can feed on his blood and body to survive. The case sets up a classroom debate about the moral validity of utilitarianism—and its doctrine that the right thing to do is whatever produces "the greatest good for the greatest number."
So I shall ask you now, what would YOU do?
My take on this.