Administrative Discretion – Kennedy Constitution Vs Fredrickson Social Equity

A lot has been contributed by public administrators in assisting to develop a fairer, more equitable and just country. Social equity as a central value in public administration is no longer new. However despite of knowing its importance it has become harder and harder to ensure social equity in administrative practices, especially in where discretion is allowed. Ethics according to Frederickson (2005) is about doing the right thing in the right way. Thus discretion might regard considering to act ethically, irrespective of whether the action contains no previous foundation in precedent or policy. It might even need the refusal to adhere to established procedure and policy by challenging those that are powerful politically. Unless ethical behavior are perceived to be contrary to the rule compliance, it might be easier to define discretion aspect as the motivation or desire to act ethically while public decisions are being made. In this regard, administrative discretion might partly contain the administrator responsibility to follow ethical choices irrespective of where the choices may lead.

The ethical decision making idea as policy implementation element might produce some anticipated outcomes when integrated with other values that include representative and democratic government. The hard or difficult choice by all public servants is the help limit and not whether to assist or not.  Basically, there are more individuals seeking help than those who can provide it. It is essential to remember that the more one is assisted the longer the waiting list of individual who seek for the same help. This is exactly the condition that neither policies nor bureaucratic routines or ruling of the court can offer professional guidance on. Therefore if ethical guideline will be employed in this case it should mostly focus on the volume of assisted individuals and not extend of help to ensure more are served in the society. This way equity might be felt among many in the society (Cox III, 2004).

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