The Lighthouse
In the short film titled Lighthouse, presented by Liberty Mutual, there are important legal and ethical issues presented that involve external social pressures and personal decisions.   The short film depicts a lighthouse keeper fulfilling his legal and social responsibility to keep watch over the town’s lighthouse.   It contrasts this responsibility with the lighthouse keeper’s desire to join the townspeople in their social gathering at a local tavern.   The ethical situation abruptly changes when the lighthouse beacon fails and the outcome of personal decisions becomes ominous.   The issues presented in the film are particularly relevant to both organizational and personal choices in ethical decision-making.   In just over three short minutes, this short film depicts a powerful relationship between legal and ethical issues in organizational ethics.
The ethical issues presented in the short film are important because the lighthouse keeper’s duty is a significant legal and social responsibility.   It is a social responsibility because the lighthouse provides safety and security to townspeople, ocean navigators, and shipwrecked persons.   It is a historic fact that a lighthouse keeper is legally responsible if his light goes out and a ship wrecks (Wharton, 1874, pp. 77-78).   In the film, the lighthouse keeper is noticeably perturbed that other members of the town are enjoying the evening while he carries out the responsibility of keeping watch of the lighthouse.   His personal ethical decision to fulfill his legal and moral obligations ensures the safety of both the people in the town and those traveling by sea.   When the lighthouse fails and the lighthouse keeper cannot signal an oncoming ship, the townspeople come to the aid of the keeper; acknowledging the immense significance of the ethical issues.
External social pressures have an important role in influencing organizational ethics.   Social pressures reinforce...