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Can Public Managers Have it Both Ways?

            The article that I chose to analyze was written by Don Menzel, entitled, "Moral Mutes with Ethical Voices: Can Public Managers Have it Both Ways?" The article basically discusses the controversial issue regarding whether or not public managers can be both moral mutes and ethical voices. .
             According to Menzel, it is a deep-rooted belief in the professionalization of public service in the United States that public managers should not voice or act on their sense of morality while holding public office; thus, be moral mutes. In addition, Menzel makes the argument that those people who do not make a distinction between ethics and morals and who subscribe to the view that managers should not inject their values into the workplace are destined to be both moral and ethical mutes. He describes ethics as being values that guide right and wrong behavior, while morals are deep-seated values that guide right and wrong behavior and ways of life, and the key term for both attributes is "values.".
             Within his article, Menzel makes reference to Louis Gawthrop, author of Public Service & Democracy (1998). Menzel states that Gawthrop believes that ethics is morality in action. Therefore, it is a mistake to separate morality and ethics, yet it is done very often in practice as well as MPA programs of study. He believes that it is important that public administrators act on the belief that ethics is morality in action. Gawthrop states that a morally mute manager is an ethically mute manager who cannot contribute to a democracy. He also contends that "notions of faith, hope, and love are not generally recognized as significant components of public administration in America today. Instead, it is the logic of utility that still provides the basic rationale for the classical management tenets of efficiency and control.".
             According to Menzel, regardless of the pressure of modern-day management realities, Gawthrop is an optimist about public service, ethics and democracy.

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