I am working on introducing my young students to philosophical and political concepts surrounding the question of a just and fair society. I am using the work of John Rawls and Emmanuel Kant to aid my efforts.
Today I asked the group this question:
Which society would you choose:
A.) Everyone can do as they choose if it maximizes the happiness of the society
B.) Everyone can do as they choose provided it benefits the most vulnerable in society
Interestingly, the vote was 8-4 in favour of option A. In other words, the students voted for the utilitarian principle (Jeremy Bentham) as opposed to the difference principle (John Rawls). As we discuss these matters further, I will revisit this question with them.