The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, adopted on December 13, 2006, and entered into force on May 3, 2008, constitutes a key landmark in the emerging field of global health law and a critical milestone in the development of international law on the rights of persons with disabilities. At the time of its adoption, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights heralded the CRPD as a rejection of the understanding of persons with disabilities “as objects (...) of charity, medical treatment and social protection” and an embrace of disabled people as “subjects of rights.”The text of the Convention itself, and the highly participatory process by which it was negotiated, signal a definitive break from previous international approaches that focused on disability within a medical model framework. In contrast to traditional approaches, the CRPD embraces a social model of disability, concentrating the disability experience not in individual deficiency, but in the socially constructed environment and the barriers that impede the participation of persons with disabilities in society. (shrink)
Janet E. Buerger uses this remarkable collection of images to produce a cultural history of the daguerreotype's most learned following—an elite group of mid-nineteenth-century intellectuals who sought to understand and develop the ...
This article reviews the contributions of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities to the progressive development of both international human rights law and global health law and governance. It provides a summary of the global situation of persons with disabilities and outlines the progressive development of international disability standards, noting the salience of the shift from a medical model of disability to a rights-based social model reflected in the CRPD. Thereafter, the article considers the Convention's structure (...) and substantive content, and then analyzes in specific detail the particular contributions of the Convention to health and human rights law and global health governance. It concludes with an exploration of the potential implications of the CRPD's innovations for some of the most pressing issues in global health governance, including the Convention's contributions to the principle of participation in decision-making. (shrink)
Should there be a female age limit on public funding for assisted reproductive technology (ART)? The question bears significant economic and sociopolitical implications and has been contentious in many countries. We conceptualise the question as one of justice in resource allocation, using three much-debated substantive principles of justice—the capacity to benefit, personal responsibility, and need—to structure and then explore a complex of arguments. Capacity-to-benefit arguments are not decisive: There are no clear cost-effectiveness grounds to restrict funding to those older women (...) who still bear some capacity to benefit from ART. Personal responsibility arguments are challenged by structural determinants of delayed motherhood. Nor are need arguments decisive: They can speak either for or against a female age limit, depending on the conception of need used. We demonstrate how these principles can differ not only in content but also in the relative importance they are accorded by governments. Wide variation in ART public funding policy might be better understood in this light. We conclude with some inter-country comparison. New Zealand and Swedish policies are uncommonly transparent and thus demonstrate particularly well how the arguments we explore have been put into practice. (shrink)
My assessment of Jean Porter's Natural and Divine Law is mixed. She provides a generally accurate account of the scholastic theory of natural law, since she steers clear of the erroneous notion that its understanding of "nature" was confined to the physical or biological and rightly notes that "nature" refers to the fullness of human nature. Her account of modern natural law theory is less reliable; for she ignores the work of several prominent contemporary natural law theorists and regrettably caricatures (...) the natural law theory employed in Church documents. I found most illuminating her claims that biblical themes influenced which issues became the focus of scholastic natural law. Her entire project, however, is flawed in serious ways: 1) surprisingly, in light of her previous work, she neglects nearly entirely the role of virtue in natural law theory; and 2) the trajectory of her work is designed to lead the Church to change its teaching on sexuality, even to the point of claiming that scholastic natural law theory has principles that justify homosexual celebrating of the erotic in the gay lifestyle. (shrink)
It is possible to defend the Church’s teaching that contraception is incompatible with God’s plan for sexuality in many different ways. This essay sketches the fundamental views of reality common to all the defenses and the main lines of the most prominent defenses, some based on natural law, on the theology of the body, and on the physical, psychological, and social consequences of the use of contraception. While all the defenses have merit, the argument based on the recognition that sexual (...) intercourse is meant to be a complete self-gift has a special power of its own. (shrink)
Foreword by Robert H. Bork -- Culture wars -- A distorted understanding of rights -- The right to privacy -- Griswold and contraception -- Roe and abortion -- Assisted suicide and homosexuality -- Political connections and natural consequences.
Background: The regulation of muscle force is a vital aspect of sensorimotor control, requiring intricate neural processes. While neural activity associated with upper extremity force control has been documented, extrapolation to lower extremity force control is limited. Knowledge of how the brain regulates force control for knee extension and flexion may provide insights as to how pathology or intervention impacts central control of movement.Objectives: To develop and implement a neuroimaging-compatible force control paradigm for knee extension and flexion.Methods: A magnetic resonance (...) imaging safe load cell was used in a customized apparatus to quantify force during neuroimaging. Visual biofeedback and a target sinusoidal wave that fluctuated between 0 and 5 N was provided via an MRI-safe virtual reality display. Fifteen right leg dominant female participants completed a knee extension and flexion force matching paradigm during neuroimaging. The force-matching error was calculated based on the difference between the visual target and actual performance. Brain activation patterns were calculated and associated with force-matching error and the difference between quadriceps and hamstring force-matching tasks were evaluated with a mixed-effects model.Results: Knee extension and flexion force-matching tasks increased BOLD signal among cerebellar, sensorimotor, and visual-processing regions. Increased knee extension force-matching error was associated with greater right frontal cortex and left parietal cortex activity and reduced left lingual gyrus activity. Increased knee flexion force-matching error was associated with reduced left frontal and right parietal region activity. Knee flexion force control increased bilateral premotor, secondary somatosensory, and right anterior temporal activity relative to knee extension. The force-matching error was not statistically different between tasks.Conclusion: Lower extremity force control results in unique activation strategies depending on if engaging knee extension or flexion, with knee flexion requiring increased neural activity for the same level of force and no difference in relative error. These fMRI compatible force control paradigms allow precise behavioral quantification of motor performance concurrent with brain activity for lower extremity sensorimotor function and may serve as a method for future research to investigate how pathologies affect lower extremity neuromuscular function. (shrink)
This article investigates conceptual and strategic relationships between corporate identity, organizational identity and ethics, utilizing the Benetton Corporation as an illustrative case study. Although much attention has been given to visual aspects of Benetton's renowned ethical brand building efforts, few studies have looked at how Benetton's employees, retail environments and trade events express ethical aspects of their well-known corporate identity. A multi-method case study, including interviews at retail outlets and trade events, sheds light on several important yet under-studied components of (...) corporate identity, including stakeholders such as retail managers and contract employees. Analysis of Benetton's operations revealed disconnection and inconsistency, as well as a failure to communicate ethical values and socially responsible attributes throughout organizational identity. Operational identity emerged as a useful complement to models of corporate identity. We demonstrate the way in which organizations may fail to capitalize on positive aspects of their organizational identity by neglecting their operational identity. (shrink)
Historically, entities with a vested interest in a product that critics have suggested is harmful have consistently used research to back their claims that the product is safe. Prominent examples are: tobacco, lead, bisphenol A, and atrazine. Research literature indicates that about 80–90 % of studies with industry affiliation found no harm from the product, while only about 10–20 % of studies without industry affiliation found no harm. In parallel to other historical debates, recent studies examining a possible relationship between (...) mercury exposure and autism spectrum disorder show a similar dichotomy. Studies sponsored and supported by industry or entities with an apparent conflict of interest have most often shown no evidence of harm or no “consistent” evidence of harm, while studies without such affiliations report positive evidence of a Hg/autism association. The potentially causal relationship between Hg exposure and ASD differs from other toxic products since there is a broad coalition of entities for whom a conflict of interest arises. These include influential governmental public health entities, the pharmaceutical industry, and even the coal burning industry. This review includes a systematic literature search of original studies on the potential relationship between Hg and ASD from 1999 to date, finding that of the studies with public health and/or industry affiliation, 86 % reported no relationship between Hg and ASD. However, among studies without public health and/or industry affiliation, only 19 % find no relationship between Hg and ASD. The discrepancy in these results suggests a bias indicative of a conflict of interest. (shrink)