Based on the ethical theories and core values, this case presents a real ethical dilemma. No ethical theory supports killing, or rather, subjecting others to situations that may lead to their death. The best solution would be to determine a survival strategy that would help avail resources for all the nine individuals for the six months. However, based on the requirements of this case and following the ethical theories, I would suggest that the male mental patient, male minister, female attorney, male biologist, and female college student, be put out of the shelter. The pregnant college student, female child, male physician, and male carpenter should remain.
In this case, the applied ethical theories are Deontology, Utilitarianism, and the principle of Least Harm. The theory of deontology states that individuals should adhere to their duties and obligations. Utilitarianism theory is based on the ability to predict the consequences of an action, while the principle of least harm suggests that an action with least harm is the most appropriate. Highlighted hereunder is how the principles are applied.
Keeping the pregnant college student means that two lives are saved. The physician should be retained to take care of the general health of the remaining individuals. In case of an emergency - say the pregnant woman delivers - the services of the physician would be of greatest help. The little girl is the youngest of all these people and should be given a chance to experience life. Already two women have been saved; so, the third woman cannot be saved based on gender sensitivity. The carpenter should be saved since he is the youngest male. Besides, he is likely to be strong and can help in carrying out tough manual work. In case the woman gives birth, their number would increase to five and there may be need for more resources. However, the little girl has lesser consumption of resources. This means that enough resources would be saved to cater for the newborn.
The male mental patient is most likely to disrupt the group, and is the member with the least help to the group, if any. Besides, the effects of radiation may not affect him as others; so, he is most likely to die with lesser pain. The male minister is closer to God and more spiritual than anyone else. He understands the pains and sufferings of the world and should be ready to give his life in order to save others, just like Jesus did. The male biologist is the second youngest male (though relatively old). At least, he should give room to the youngest male, who is probably most energetic, and has not experience the world more enough to die. Two women have already been saved; so, the female attorney and the college student should be removed. The female attorney is the oldest woman, and has most experience in life. She should give way to the younger women.
(I have to admit that choosing between the six-year old female child and 18-year old female college student is a toll order. The college student is more important to the group and can greatly help as compared to the little girl. Besides, this is somebody the society and the government have invested in and is expected to give back to the society. The college student has just defined her career and started building it. The little girl, on the other hand, has a long way to go. Lesser resources have been invested in her. Besides, she has not yet defined her career and what she wants in life. Better still, she is of less help to the group. I think the little girl should give way to the college student. All the ethical theories and principles applied here support the college student).