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Is Minimum Wage Ethical? Essay

Claim: Minimum wage is unethical. Explanation of the claim: I will intend to provide a concise explanation of why minimum wage is unethical. Arguing that the minimum wage should not exist and wages should be evaluated in a method that takes into account the morality of an action subject to the action’s outcome or consequence. Essentially, this method will allow priority to the jobs and incomes of the worst off. That being the case, this sequitur will be regarded as normal by consequentialist in many aspects, intersecting with the major views regarding minimum wage.

Reasons for the claim: (1) Minimum wage destroys the roots of ethics regarding consensual relation between people. First, one must consider that the main idea of minimum wage is to assist the low-income population in order to improve one’s socioeconomic status and afford a decent living. However, it is important to understand that there will be no consequences if the minimum wage is at or below the competitive rate for labor, in the contrary, if it is above that rate, people will end up jobless. In essence, if the price labor (minimum wage) rises, demand will fall.

At the end of the day, the CEO of the company will decide to move or close the company/business and fire all the employees due to the fact that there is not enough profit (money coming in) to maintain the high payroll (amount of money paid to the employees). In other words, people demand a higher pay to employers for the same job and government creates regulations that forces employers to pay the amount of pay rate that is demanded by the people. But where does that money will come from? Minimum wage supporters tend to believe that CEOs have infinite amount of money and they refuse to pay their mployees. That is a syllogism fallacy, implying the general idea that since all CEOs own a company, then they must have tremendous amount of money. Metaphorically speaking, CEOs have a gun pointed to their head forcing them to pay certain wage to their employees for the same job, essentially forcing them to close their business. In other words, this unethical idea violates consensual agreement of employment between the employee and the employer, and still forcing employees to work on the black market below minimum wage simply because they want a job to sustain their family.

By the same token, this idea violates the thirteenth-amendment, which constitutes slavery or indentured servitude. (II) Minimum wage creates false impressions in order to hide its original terrific results. Certainly. it is fair to say that the portrayed intentions of minimum wage are promising. However, one must understand the monetary concept behind this main idea by taking into account the ends of the proposed idea. Why not twenty-dollars as minimum wage? Why not thirty-dollars?

Or even a thousand-dollars as minimum wage? As a general overview, minimum wage supporters tend to lie about the terrible idea that minimum wage seeks the common good for everyone. However, it is important to understand that, since employers do not have “a cave with hidden money” to pay infinite amount of money to employees, therefore employers will only hire people that are experienced and worth paying twenty-dollars per hour per se. In essence, the possibility for young people to acquire a job will reduce extremely.

For this reason, this idea violates one of the main principles of ethics — promise-keeping and trustworthiness. That is to say, minimum wage supporters and some politicians interpret this idea in an unreasonably technical or legalistic manner in order to rationalize non-compliance or create justifications for escaping their commitments. That is simply lying. (III) Minimum wage is intended to only target employers’ rights. As has been mentioned, minimum wage is intended to assist low-income families in order to provide a better socioeconomic status.

However, one must consider all sides of the sphere equally and provide equal rights for all individuals, taking into reference Aristotle “treat like cases as like” ( hean Ethics, V. 3. 1131a). The minimum wage targets employers, not workers. The employers are the ones who break the law and are liable for sanctions if they pay below the required rate. It is not the workers whose selfownership is infringed upon. The effect of coercing the employer might be that the worker does not get a job, but the worker does not have a right to a job.

It might be granted that the worker has a right to accept the offer of a willing employer, but that is not violated if the employer is coerced into not being willing. With that in mind, it is safe to argue that it seems like a violation of self-ownership for the employer. (IV) It is unethical not to value individuals’ skills in a consequentialist manner. It is not enough just to point out that the minimum wage conflicts with freedom of contract or self-ownership. It does conflict, but more needs to be said about why this would be wrong.

Now, it becomes a matter of respecting autonomy- the right to decide how to live one’s life, as long as those actions do not interfere with the rights and welfare of others, and accept responsibility one’s for actions and inactions. In other words, it is imperative to say that ethically we should be treated as self-responsible individuals, asserting that it is our duty to make our own way in the world in order to survive. Nonetheless, it is necessary to treat other people as having the same responsibilities and interact in a voluntary basis.

With this in mind, taking into consideration individual circumstances will allow to differentiate wages from people that are committed to succeed from the ones that make bad decisions and are not responsible for their own actions. In consequence, people that are in a consensual agreement with their employer and are not satisfied with their pay rate can terminate their employment with that specific company and seek for another job or open their own business. Simultaneously, if employers are not satisfied completely with he job that is being completed by an individual, then employers will be allowed to pay less in order to motivate employees to put more effort or move to another company where employees’ jobs are more valuable. To that end, if employers do not satisfy the pay rate the employee is requesting, then the business will collapse. Reasons Against the Claim: (1) Minimum wage prevents exploitation. Many might agree that using another person’s vulnerability for one’s own benefit is immoral in all aspects. The idea of implementing minimum wage takes the aforementioned scheme as a justification to prevent employers from exploiting their workers.

The essential key point is to ensure that employers provide a decent wage, and, if they do not, they are exploiting their workers. In fact, people ought to get a minimum wage because, in general, nobody should be poor, or people’s needs should be met. We need to be certain about specific aspects in our society, that includes the fact that there are people who lack education and work ethic, and immigrants who are not necessarily familiar with the language, that simply have the need of access to certain basic needs (food, shelter, transportation, etc. ). (2) Minimum wage allows equality.

One must recognize that equality in the monetary income aspect is necessary in order to succeed and provide a decent life for our loved ones. Providing that, it is important to mention that regardless of one’s race, sex, age, sexual orientation, etc. fairness must always be present without discrimination. Allowing minimum wage to prevent unfair pay due to the aforementioned criteria is essential in order enable every individual to succeed in an equal manner. Therefore, ethically speaking, the richer people have a duty or obligation to sacrifice if necessary for the poor— from an altruistic perspective. 3) Minimum wage provides more money for low-income families. This idea intends to promote success for low-income family by providing more money and allowing to have a more decent lifestyle. Ethically speaking, seeking the common good for people is essential for a prosperous society where there is no hunger or poverty. (4) Minimum wage allow people to succeed. It is argued that people have a duty to pursue their dreams and it is essential in order to succeed in our current competitive society.

However, one must understand that the starting point of one’s aspiration is the bottom of the scale, and one must surpass certain obstacles to succeed; simultaneously acquiring enough money in order to sustain basic needs while achieving one’s aspiration. That is why, employers must help employees and share their wealth by providing a higher wage in order to achieve their goals and succeed. Decision: After careful consideration, many of the aforementioned arguments provide consistent and sequitur conceptions that allow to make a determination regarding minimum wage.

However, only the reasons for the claim (I, II, III, IV) and one reason against the claim (2) provide strong and sound arguments. Forasmuch as the first reason for the claim (1), implying that minimum wage is unethical follows basic logic. Despite of the overall overview, this unethical idea violates consensual agreement of employment between the employee and the employer, and still forcing employees to work on the black market below minimum wage simply because they want a job to sustain their family.

By the same token, this idea violates the thirteenth-amendment of the constitution, which constitutes slavery or indentured servitude. Moreover, the second reason for the claim (II), provides a realistic overview of the minimum wage, despite the fact that minimum wage supporters tend to provide a dishonest examination, which violates main principles of ethics. With that in mind, it is also important to understand that the third reason for the claim (III) provides a logical and sound argument regarding equality between the employee and employer, asserting that the people target businesses only.

Also, the fourth reason for the claim (IV) is necessary to take into account when making a determination regarding minimum wage. It is important to understand that one must be held responsible for their own actions, and not to expect to do well in life if you make lots of mistakes. However, in the contrary side of the spectrum, the second idea provided in reasons against the claim (2) is important to take into account given the fact that it prevents discrimination from the employers, allowing any individual to work at the same pay rate, regardless of the extenuating circumstances.

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