Ethical Considerations For Memory Modification

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Before I begin a discussion on ethical considerations for memory modification, I want to start off by assuming that there are a different set of ethical issues that can occur with memory modification based on two conditions. The first condition that I will address below is when an individual involuntarily has his or her memory modified. The second condition that I will then explore is when an individual voluntarily chooses to have his or her memory modified.

Condition 1: Involuntary Memory Modification

Let’s start by examining the issues involved in involuntary memory modification. The summaries of Oblivion and The Forgotten indicate that individuals have their memories modified without their consent. This situation appears to be troublesome because it leaves individuals vulnerable and shows an abuse of power over individuals. While this is the basic storyline of a science fiction movie, it does make me wonder who and under what real life circumstances should someone be forced into having their memory modified? To illustrate this, I thought of some hypothetical scenarios below.

Hypothetical Scenario # 1

A young child undergoes a traumatic experience. Parents are seeing the traumatic experience affecting the mental health of their child and feel that this can be detrimental to the child’s future success. Can the parents choose to modify the memory of their child?

Hypothetical Scenario # 2

Suppose that a veteran comes back from war with severe post-traumatic stress
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