Tuesday, 6 September 2011

A Case Study

A woman wearing a 9 carat engagement ring walks into a bank to use the Cash Deposit machine. Due to her inexperience, she fumbles with the machine and has a hard time with it. A man behind her watches her impatiently. After a while she finally manages to insert RM 2000 into the machine. However it rejects 5 pieces of RM50 (RM250). She takes back the money and leaves in hurry, assuming that the transaction has completed. As a result she did not take the receipt. The machine is still operating and one can abort the transaction anytime to retrieve the RM 1750.

The man who is standing behind her contemplates that fact. He is a 50 year old single unemployed odd job worker who has been laid off for 6 months. His savings has dried up after paying for bills and his daily necessities. He thinks hard about whether or not to take the money.

Option A :
He takes the money.

Justification :
He is having a hard time financially. The money will help him to survive for two months while looking for a new job. The rich woman would probably not notice a thing. He considers himself an act of charity for her.

Option B :
He helps her to finish the transaction and puts the receipt on top of the machine hoping that she will collect it back later.

Reason :
Never take other people's belonging no matter what situation you're in financially.

I personally choose option B. It is only morally right to do so.
However I make that decision because I'm still well fed and I have a roof over my head. What if I am in the opposite situation? Would I still make the same choice? It is difficult to say unless I am in the same situation as him.

Sometimes I wonder if morality shapes people or is it the other way round.