Bioethics

Editorial: Human Dignity and Biomedicine

Arguably, one of the best extended contemporary discussions of human dignity and its implications for biomedicine was commissioned under President George W. Bush and convened by his President’s Council on Bioethics. The council’s two reports, Being Human (2003) and Human Dignity and Bioethics (2008), are the results of more than a few public meetings, thousands of pages of expert testimony, and the work of two physician-scholar-chairmen, Leon Kass, MD, and Edmund Pellegrino, MD.

Podcast Episode: 
166

A Christian Framework for Engaging in Science Policy

But what is science policy and how should Christians approach science policy? ‘Science policy’ includes public policy about science—federal funding for scientific research, clinical trial regulations, public health policy, or science, math, and engineering education policy. The term ‘science policy’ is also invoked to talk about how science is used to craft public policy, as in the case of using fetal pain research to craft abortion policy.

In order to develop a sound approach for Christian engagement in science policy, we first need to develop a framework for thinking about how to integrate faith with our view of science and our approach to political engagement.

Podcast Episode: 
170

The Christian Hippocratic Tradition in Medicine

To some people it may seem anachronistic that the aim of Ethics & Medicine is to ‘reassert the Hippocratic consensus in medicine as seen through the lens of the Judeo-Christian tradition.’ What is Hippocratic medicine?
Podcast Episode: 
150

Forced Sterilization of Native Americans: Late Twentieth Century Physician Cooperation with National Eugenic Policies

The protracted policy directed against the United States of America’s indigenous peoples represented misguided governments, widespread greed, and enforcement by an at times ruthless, undisciplined military. A recent, albeit weakly publicized, continuation of this policy has been played out in a bioethical arena. Indeed, after the Nuremberg Trials and an explicit international consensus, this would be considered anathema. On view is the evil of forced abortions and sterilizations. This two-pronged approach to knowingly limit births in selected populations was emblematic of eugenic policy in the early to mid-twentieth century. Unfortunately, eugenic birth control had been resuscitated as late as the 1970s through voluntary physician complicity with an immoral national eugenic policy.

Podcast Episode: 
149

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