This study considers the ethical implications of quoting children with particular emphasis on privacy and accuracy. A content analysis is used to examine how newspaper reporters quote children and teenagers. The study found that youths most likely are named when they are quoted in the newspaper. Teens who are 17 are the most likely to be quoted. Youths most frequently appear in feature stories, and they most frequently are treated as experts who provide the reporter with factual information. The researcher (...) argues that journalists should consider the vulnerabilities of youths before quoting them. (shrink)
English uses the horizontal spatial metaphors to express time (e.g., the good days ahead of us). Chinese also uses the vertical metaphors (e.g., 'the month above' to mean last month). Do Chinese speakers, then, think about time in a different way than English speakers? Boroditsky [Boroditsky, L. (2001). Does language shape thought? Mandarin and English speakers' conceptions of time. Cognitive Psychology, 43(1), 1-22] claimed that they do, and went on to conclude that 'language is a powerful tool in shaping habitual (...) thought about abstract domains' (such as time). By estimating the frequency of usage, we found that Chinese speakers actually use the horizontal spatial metaphors more often than the vertical metaphors. This offered no logical ground for Boroditsky's claim. We were also unable to replicate her experiments in four different attempts. We conclude that Chinese speakers do not think about time in a different way than English speakers just because Chinese also uses the vertical spatial metaphors to express time. (shrink)
The problem of standard of care in clinical research concerns the level of treatment that investigators must provide to subjects in clinical trials. Commentators often formulate answers to this problem by appealing to two distinct types of obligations: professional obligations and natural duties. In this article, I investigate whether investigators also possess institutional obligations that are directly relevant to the problem of standard of care, that is, those obligations a person has because she occupies a particular institutional role. I examine (...) two types of institutional contexts: (1) public research agencies – agencies or departments of states that fund or conduct clinical research in the public interest; and (2) private-for-profit corporations. I argue that investigators who are employed or have their research sponsored by the former have a distinctive institutional obligation to conduct their research in a way that is consistent with the state's duty of distributive justice to provide its citizens with access to basic health care, and its duty to aid citizens of lower income countries. By contrast, I argue that investigators who are employed or have their research sponsored by private-for-profit corporations do not possess this obligation nor any other institutional obligation that is directly relevant to the ethics of RCTs. My account of the institutional obligations of investigators aims to contribute to the development of a reasonable, distributive justice-based account of standard of care. (shrink)
The accounts of social freedom offered by G. W. F. Hegel and Axel Honneth identify the normative demands on social institutions and explain how individual freedom is realized through rational participation in such institutions. While both offer normative reconstructions of the market economy, public sphere and family, they both derive the norms of educational institutions from education’s role in preparing people for participation in other institutions. We argue that this represents a significant defect in their accounts of social freedom because (...) they both fail to account for the distinctive aims and norms of education. Only educational institutions bring individuals into a both shared and autonomous standpoint necessary for participation in social life. We thus argue both that Hegel’s and Honneth’s accounts are empirically inadequate and that they neglect the normative demands on schools to contribute to individual moral and intellectual development. (shrink)
Many principles characterize educational justice in terms of the relationship between educational inputs, outputs and distributive standards. Such principles depend upon the causal pathway view of education. It is implicit in this view that the causally effective aspects of education can be understood as separate from the normative aspects of education. Yet this view relies on an impossible division of labor between empirical and normative work in educational research: it treats the causal roles that are understood and explained objectively through (...) empirical research as separate from the normative theorizing that informs the assessment of particular policies and practices. Such principles therefore rely on unreliable causal claims and are unable to make prescriptions about practices even according to their own conceptions of justice. Furthermore, such principles obscure other relevant considerations of justice that pertain to the internal processes of education and the structural relation of education to external social conditions. (shrink)
How has feminism changed in the UK since the 1960s? This was the question I set out to explore in my research on the British Women’s Liberation Movement, published as Radical Feminism: Feminist Activism in Movement. I found that the motivations and aspirations of activists today were similar to those reported by feminists of the Second Wave; but the methods and tactics were more professionalized and there was less of a focus on women-only space.
Although the principle of fair subject selection is a widely recognized requirement of ethical clinical research, it often yields conflicting imperatives, thus raising major ethical dilemmas regarding participant selection. In this paper, we diagnose the source of this problem, arguing that the principle of fair subject selection is best understood as a bundle of four distinct sub-principles, each with normative force and each yielding distinct imperatives: fair inclusion; fair burden sharing; fair opportunity; and fair distribution of third-party risks. We first (...) map out these distinct sub-principles, and then identify the ways in which they yield conflicting imperatives for the design of inclusion and exclusion criteria, and the recruitment of participants. We then offer guidance for how decision makers should navigate these conflicting imperatives to ensure that participants are selected fairly. (shrink)
In the never-ending debate about the scope and limits of science, the hottest argument now centres on the scientific study of man himself. Can there be a science of man at all, in any comprehensive sense? Or is the idea in some way ultimately self-defeating, like that of pulling oneself up by one's own shoelaces? My purpose in this paper is not to venture a direct answer to this ticklish question, but rather to highlight one or two desirable characteristics of (...) a science which I think must inevitably be lacking in any attempt to turn the scientific spotlight upon ourselves. Whether we call the attainable residue by the name of ‘science’ is less important than that we see clearly what not to expect of it. (shrink)
Governments must determine the legal procedures by which their residents are registered, or can register, as organ donors. Provided that governments recognize that people have a right to determine what happens to their organs after they die, there are four feasible options to choose from: opt-in, opt-out, mandated active choice, and voluntary active choice. We investigate the ethics of these policies' use of nudges to affect organ donor registration rates. We argue that the use of nudges in this context is (...) morally problematic. It is disrespectful of people's autonomy to take advantage of their cognitive biases since doing so involves bypassing, not engaging, their rational capacities. We conclude that while mandated active choice policies are not problem free—they are coercive, after all—voluntary active choice, opt-in, and opt-out policies are potentially less respectful of people's autonomy since their use of nudges could significantly affect people's decision making. (shrink)
During the 1940s and 1950s, the Australian microbiologist F. Macfarlane Burnet sought a biologically plausible explanation of antibody production. In this essay, we seek to recover the conceptual pathways that Burnet followed in his immunological theorizing. In so doing, we emphasize the influence of speculations on individuality, especially those of philosopher Alfred North Whitehead; the impact of cybernetics and information theory; and the contributions of clinical research into autoimmune disease that took place in Melbourne. We point to the influence of (...) local experimental and intellectual currents on Burnet’s work. Accordingly, this essay describes an arc distinct from most other tracings of Burnet’s conceptual development, which focus on his early bacteriophage research, his fascination with the work of Julian Huxley and other biologists in the 1920s, and his interest in North Atlantic experimental investigations in the life sciences. No doubt these too were potent influences, but they seem insufficient to explain, for example, Burnet’s sudden enthusiasm in the 1940s for immunological definitions of self and not-self. We want to demonstrate here how Burnet’s deep involvement in philosophical biology – along with attention to local clinical research – provided him with additional theoretic tools and conceptual equipment, with which to explain immune function. (shrink)
Edited by James Trafford, Robin Mackay, and Luke Pendrell. Documenting a roundtable on the ramifications of Speculative Realism for aesthetics, this discussion ranges from contemporary art's relation to the aesthetic, to accelerationism and abstraction, logic and design.
The medieval English romance The King of Tars gives an account of a birth of a lump of flesh. This has been considered as fantastic and monstrous in past literature, the horrific union of a Christian and Saracen. However, while the text certainly speaks to miscegenation, we propose that this lump of flesh is actually a hydatidiform mole. We trace the hydatidiform mole from antiquity, surrounding it with contextual medieval examples, from theology, history and medicine, that also describe abnormal births (...) as ‘lumps of flesh’. By discussing medieval ideas of monsters as a warning sign, we interpret the lump of flesh in terms of abnormal births, seed transmission, parental contribution and sin. Ideas of warning, blame and intervention present themselves as a response to moles both in medieval texts as well as in modern reactions to hydatidiform moles. We explore the epigenetics of hydatidiform moles and relate them to the medieval text. In The King of Tars, the fault for the lump of flesh could reside with either parent; we find that this is also the case in the genetic formation of the hydatidiform mole; we also argue that the epigenetics supports medieval theories of seed transmission. (shrink)
Australia, Canada, and New Zealand currently apply health requirements to prospective immigrants, denying residency to those with health conditions that are likely to impose an “excessive demand” on their publicly funded health and social service programs. In this paper, I investigate the charge that such policies are wrongfully discriminatory against persons with disabilities. I first provide a freedom-based account of the wrongness of discrimination according to which discrimination is wrong when and because it involves disadvantaging people in the exercise of (...) their freedom on the basis of morally arbitrary features of their identity. Discrimination is permissible, I suggest, when it is necessary to advance a valuable exercise of the discriminating agent’s freedom. I then apply this account to the case of social cost health requirements. Against critics of these requirements, I argue that it is sometimes permissible for states to discriminate against prospective immigrants with disabilities. States may do so, I suggest, when such discriminatory treatment is necessary to prevent an increase in rates of mortality and/or morbidity amongst citizens. Alongside critics of social cost health requirements however, I argue that existing policies are likely a form of wrongful discrimination insofar as they are too broad to satisfy this standard. (shrink)
Recent efforts by legislative officials and public health advocates to reform the US food stamp program, or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, have focused on restricting the types of foods eligible for purchase with SNAP benefits, specifically sugar-sweetened beverages. We argue that it is, in principle, permissible for the US government to enact a SNAP-specific SSB ban prohibiting the purchase of SSBs with SNAP benefits. While the government has a duty to ensure that citizens meet their nutritional needs, since SSBs provide (...) negligible nutrition, it has no obligation to subsidize them. Additionally, there is good reason to think that a SNAP-specific SSB ban would enable the government to better fulfill two other duties—improving citizens’ health and providing public services like Medicaid and Medicare in a more cost-effective manner. Still, because the costs and benefits of such a ban remain uncertain, we argue that the government should conduct well-designed pilot projects to help determine the effects of an SSB ban. (shrink)
A chief objection to opt-out organ donor registration policies is that they do not secure people's actual consent to donation, and so fail to respect their autonomy rights to decide what happens to their organs after they die. However, scholars have recently offered two powerful responses to this objection. First, Michael B Gill argues that opt-out policies do not fail to respect people's autonomy simply because they do not secure people's actual consent to donation. Second, Ben Saunders argues that opt-out (...) policies do secure people's actual—if not explicit—consent, provided that certain conditions are satisfied. I argue that Gill and Saunders’ arguments are not successful. My conclusion does not imply that jurisdictions should not implement opt-out policies—their failure to secure people's actual consent may be outweighed by other considerations. But, my conclusion does imply that Gill and Saunders are mistaken to claim that opt-out policies are respectful of people's autonomy. (shrink)
Donald M. MacKay believed that freedom of action and human dignity are compatible with a science of behavior. In 1971 he argued this position with B.F. Skinner in a televised debate. After a brief biography of MacKay, several major points from this debate will be reviewed. The discussion serves to emphasize the correspondence rather than competition between levels of analysis, whether the levels are disciplinary (e.g. psychology, neuroscience, physics) or a matter of perspective (inside story, outside story).