Ethics & Society Newsfeed: February 5, 2016

Photo via freedigitalphotos.net.

Photo via freedigitalphotos.net.

UnitedHealth Medicare plan must cover U.S. sex reassignment surgery
A U.S. government panel has ruled that a privately run Medicare plan must cover sex reassignment surgery for a Texas transgender woman, a decision her attorney says was the first of its kind.

New wearable sensor can collect data from sweat
For the first time, a flexible, wearable sensor can collect data about multiple chemicals in body sweat.

Drug shortages forcing hard decisions on rationing treatments
Such shortages are the new normal in American medicine. But the rationing that results has been largely hidden from patients and the public.

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Can wars ever be just or are wars merely justifiable?: The conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Photo via freedigitalphotos.net.

Photo via freedigitalphotos.net.

STUDENT VOICES

By: Louise Boshab

The concepts of justice and injustice are not effective in defining war in an objective manner but on the other hand easily bring on a subjective understanding of war among populations, which will then influence either their opposition or their support of war (Gaoshan 280).

In a lecture at the Carnegie Council, David Rodin of the Oxford Institute for Ethics, Law, and Armed Conflict addresses the issue of the ethics of war and conflict, and caused me to reflect upon what makes a war just. I will explore the ideas of justified and unjustified wars discussed in Rodin’s talk through the example of the ongoing conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. One of the initial reasons behind the intermittent conflicts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo taking place since 1997 has to do with the status of the Banyarwanda—Congolese people of Rwandan descent—and of the Congolese Tutsi within Congolese society. The strong anti-Rwandan feelings that existed before the war only grew worse.

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Deterrence or Disarmament?: The Ethics of Nuclear Warfare

Corroral Missile in front of the Center Exchange. Photo via NYPL Digital Archives.

Corroral Missile in front of the Center Exchange, 1957.                                          Photo via NYPL Digital Archives.

STUDENT VOICES

By: Kayla Giampaolo

On July 16, 1945 at 5:29 a.m., a 30,000 foot mass of smoke rose in New Mexico’s desert: the first atomic bomb had just been successfully tested. At the time, most people were unaware that the course of warfare and ultimately the world was about to change irrevocably. Since that eerie summer morning, nine nations have developed the intelligence to create and possess nuclear weapons (Granoff, 2000, p. 1414). The United States is one of these nuclear superpowers, making the ethical issues associated with these weapons critical and relevant.

Is using a nuclear weapon morally permissible under some circumstances? Is it ethical to implement nuclear deterrence (threatening to use atomic weapons) as a self-defense strategy?

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Ethics & Society Newsfeed: January 29, 2016

google self driving car

Google’s Autonomous Car, via https://www.google.com/selfdrivingcar/

  • The Ethics of Autonomous Cars
    • Patrick Lin examines if there is a break between ethics and laws when it comes to robotic cars and future automobile innovations. What kind of judgements can machines make?
  • An Unprecedented Threat to Privacy
    • Edward Delman examines police departments with access to over 20,000 license plates. He notes the inherent privacy violation of the cases, and critically examines the NYPD, who contain their own license tracking software.

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Transplant Tourism, A New Kind of Trade: Ethics of Kidney Transplants, Technology & Exploitation of Donors

 

Image via freedigitalphotos.net

Image via freedigitalphotos.net

STUDENT VOICES | 2015 CHYNN PRIZE HONORABLE MENTION

By: Christina Sailer

One of the great miracles of modern medicine is the ability to save a dying patient through organ transplantation. However, there still remains a worldwide shortage of organs and an excess of disadvantaged individuals who believe their salvation is not to receive, but sell one.

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In Good Conscience: Human Rights in an Age of Terrorism, Violence, and Limited Resources

Pervasive fears sparked by acts of terror, violent crime and resource scarcity test our values and raise critical questions about how enduring our support for human rights may be.

When does the right to live safely and securely trump our obligation to uphold basic human rights? Is our attitude toward extreme remedies such as capital punishment and torture rooted in principle or in pragmatism? What do we owe survivors of genocide and other tragedies?

Join us for a forum on the challenge of upholding human rights, compassion and justice in an increasingly insecure world, April 5th, 2016, 6 – 8 p.m., Fordham Law School.

Admission is free and open to the public. Please RSVP to crcevent@fordham.edu, or call 212-636-7347. For more information, please visit the conference website.

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Ethics & Society Newsfeed: January 22, 2016

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Record 30,000 Organ Transplants Performed Last Year
Doctors attribute the 5% increase in donations in 2015 to Americans’ growing willingness to donate organs.

Why We Need to Rethink HIV Attitudes
Robert Klitzman argues it is time to re-examine attitudes and laws criminalizing potential HIV exposure.

Advancing Medical Professionalism in US Military Detainee Treatment
A bioethical argument that current medical ethics standards provide a sound basis for military medical practice, even in situations where military missions must be reconciled with patient needs.

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