Personal ethical positions are made by in part by our experiences and surroundings as well as the instinctual knowledge inherent in humans. We as the human race are “programmed’ to want to survive, reproduce and further our species. In order to achieve this goal as the human race we have a set of codes to follow which help us define what we should and should not do. To a degree we all have an inherent ethical baseline, however the effects of our environment and surroundings also help guide our ethical positions.
As our civilization expands and cultures rise and fall we continue to change our ethical positions to fit what is right and wrong and to fit with what is or isn’t socially acceptable. The definition of what is right and wrong changes over time to adapt to society and externalities that come into play. For example people who drive combustion engine cars but are also environmentally conscience have a negative externality to deal with. The negative externality of driving is pollution, however this isn’t currently considered ethically wrong and the benefit probably outweighs the cost of using alternative more eco-friendly transportation. We are starting to see more changes to help our environment and generations down the road public pollution may very well be considered a ethically wrong.
Environment, experiences and human instinct help us develop and refine our ethical positions as we age individually and as a society. In the end humans achieve ever changing ethical positions to meet the societal expectations.