Unmoral behavior refers to any immoral and uncontrolled acts/activities that can be corrupt, unfaithful or unprincipled. Unmoral behavior should be enforced by the law; it should also have similar consequences to breaking the law. Issues have been raised on the relationship between the law and the application of moral principles and whether individuals should abide by laws that do not reflect on moral principles. Some laws such the administrative laws may have nothing to do with the moral principles but some laws such as the South African laws were considered unmoral as they were harmful and resulted to the oppression of one race in that country. Defenders of natural law state that the law only qualifies to be enacted as one if it meets certain, moral demands
Unmoral behavior entails the use of unfair and wrong practices in for example the field of business. Morality is not entirely enshrined in the laws of the land and therefore some individuals have been known to engage in unmoral practices at the expense of others. So until the laws regarding the specific unmoral behavior, the individuals engaging in it are not doing anything illegal. Morality by itself is complete and refers to all acts that individuals engage in but the law does not encompass morality as a whole and that is why some unmoral behavior passes as not illegal. Though it may not be possible to have each and every moral and unmoral behavior covered in the law, it is possible to have general legal principles that distinguish all behavior that should legal from those that should not. Unmoral behaviors that may not be included in the laws are those behaviors that involve the day to day activities of man and whose wrong behavior will not be so bad or costly to the society at large (Garlikov, 2010).
When considering what is morally wrong, we should put in mind moral relativism where the conduct of an individual should be judged with reference to the socially accepted code. This is so because it is not possible to create one moral framework for the entire universe. For example in some countries the issue of abortion is morally wrong and illegal unless the mother’s health is at risk, but in some countries the moral obligation is left to the individual and it is not considered as an illegal act (Garlikov, 2010).
Intrusion of privacy is not only morally wrong but it is also constituted in the US constitution. For example the fourth amendment states that citizens have the right to be secure against unreasonable searches and seizures in their own homes, houses, papers and other effects without a warrant that clearly indicates the probable cause supported by oath or affirmation. The eighth amendment of the constitution also has several moral concepts in it, it states that excessive bail or fines should not be imposed on individuals as well as cruel and unusual punishments should not be inflicted on individuals. It is considered to be unmoral behavior to intentionally inflict bodily harm to anyone and to also impose exorbitant fines on any individual even if he/she has committed an offense (Hawkins, 2007).
To establish laws that determine the consequences for unmoral behavior should first begin by determining the reason/causes of needing the law. If the act affects the general public then there is need for laws to govern the conduct of that particular behavior.
Most unmoral behavior in the society is catered for in the laws that govern the country for example it is morally wrong and illegal to stab someone with the intention of causing bodily harm or with the intention of killing the victims. Other unmoral acts such as rape, robbery have been catered for in the laws of the land. It is therefore appropriate to note that almost all the constitutions of all the countries are written with morality as the background. A constitution without morals is like a formal document that is pointless as it does not aim at achieving justice and promoting the overall welfare of the public..
Unmoral behavior should have similar consequences with breaking of the law. This is so because in many a society any unmoral behavior is any act that is generally unacceptable to the public. It is therefore best that any individual that indulges on any kind of unmoral behavior is charged as a law breaker. Moral behavior involves the generally accepted codes and norms of conduct and behavior of a society (Hawkins, 2007).
They might be written as the laws but in some instance they are not written anywhere but are just known to be the accepted code of conduct. Going against the accepted moral behavior will be equal to breaking the ‘unwritten law’ and the individuals should be seen as law breakers and appropriate measures taken. In the world we live in today we have moral meters in the form of the government, the law/constitution and the police force. These moral meters ensure that if an individual engages in something that is so unmoral that it affects the society as a whole he/she pays for it (Duchack, 2002).
It has also been noted that the more civilized a society the closer it gets to understand its nature and how to incorporate the nature within a moral and generally accepted framework. A civilized society would for example see it as legally wrong to conduct genital mutilation and honor killings and therefore such an act would be considered a crime and the offender would be seen as a law breaker and appropriate measures would be taken against the individual.
Morally acceptable behavior is also defined by the attributes an act elicits in us as human beings. For example happiness, it is considered a universal trait and we as human beings experience it when another individual does a morally accepted behavior. A happy individual will not engage in unmoral behavior such as murder he/she will engage in activities that promote happiness and this behavior are those that do not break any form of law written or unwritten. Behavior can be described as moral and immoral based on the human nature of man as well as the feeling of empathy that is elicited as a result of an action for example it is unmoral behavior to stab another person. It is a feeling of willingness to do what you, would also not mind being done to you. We would not want to be stabbed and therefore we empathize with the one that has been stabbed and see it as immoral behavior the act of stabbing (Garlikov, 2010).
In the field of business of marketing there should be laws that govern the conduct of manufacturers and good and services providers from engaging in unmoral behavior. For example over- marketing behavior is an unmoral behavior and those that engage in it should be treated as law breakers. Marketer can engage in the sale of fake, under-danger products or polluted products. This act is not only unmoral but also illegal as it will affect the consumers of the product as they are not informed on the products they are using/ purchasing. Marketers can also apply illegal promotional tactics so as to lure consumers to purchase their products. The marketers will for example exaggerate the function of a product or in some instance give false advertisement on the performance of a product. This conduct is not only illegal; but also unmoral and ethically wrong as it involves the misinformation of the public (Dyzenhaus, & Ripstein, 2007).
Government should enact laws that will govern the general public from unmoral behaviors in fields such as business and marketing. Those that engage in Unmoral behavior should be treated the same as law offenders/breakers because their conduct affects the society. In many instances the law of the country has covered the issue of moral and unmoral behavior. In the US for example, there is the constitution that protects the rights of all citizens. From these laws the conduct of individual is spelt out and the society as a whole is able to determine what moral and unmoral behavior is. While the law is needed so as to achieve several moral conduct, it cannot be the same as morality and the law therefore should not collide i.e. cause a conflict with the moral conduct of the general public. The law does not have to be perfect but it also does not have to be so wrong such that it permits the act of unmoral behavior that is intolerable in the society.
Duchack, A. (2002). A-Z of Modern America. Routledge
Dyzenhaus, D. & Ripstein, A. (2007). Law and morality: readings in legal philosophy University of Toronto Press
Garlikov, R. (2010) Morality and Law retrieved from http://www.garlikov.com/philosophy/moralityandlaw.htm on 4th April 2011 .
Hawkins, C. (2007). Why moral relativism is wrong. Retrieved from http://www.helium.com/items/429944-why-moral-relativism-is-wrong on 4th April 2011