David Sharp, Everest, ethics, & climbing
Through David Zinger’s blog, I came across a great discussion on a great website, the Ethics Scoreboard. This article is insightful, and brings up many essential issues regarding the 2006 death of David Sharp on Everest as well as how we deal with ethical decisions in difficult situations.
I especially enjoyed what the author, Jack Marshall, concluded with:
The significance of the David Sharp tragedy is not that the mountaineers did the wrong thing. Of course they did the wrong thing. Nor is it that they are callous or unethical people, for they are probably no more so than you or I. The importance of the story is that it vividly shows how difficult it can be to make even obvious ethical choices when powerful non-ethical considerations are in our sights. Every one of us has a goal or a dream or a desire that could make us walk by a dying man. It is our responsibility to recognize what those goals, dreams and desires are, and to force ourselves not to forget about right and wrong as we approach them.
How true that is.
So, the big question for us all:
As you ascend your mountain, as you move toward your biggest dream in life, where are you prepared to stop, change direction, and follow your ethical principals instead of the route to the top?