September 19, 2015
Morals and Ethics
What are morals and ethics? In reality these two words can mean many different things to many different people. Definitively, morals are “concerning or relating to what is right and wrong in human behavior” (Merriam-Webster.com). This is where it becomes complicated, because establishing what is really right and wrong and getting rid of the grey areas in an imperfect world is impossible. Ethics are “rules of behavior based on ideas about what is morally good and bad” (Merriam-Webster.com). So, while they’re fairly similar, they do differ minutely. But, more so, they differ from different countries, different states, different religions, different jobs, different…show more content… One main area that ethics and morals have affected is the field of science, with scientific experiments and with treating patients. History in many of these areas has shaped what rules have been set for the future and the practice of these jobs today.
First, we are going to take a look at a major event in history that lasted over 40 years. It hurt many individuals and their families and took thousands of lives. In 1932 the Tuskegee Study began. The investigation was started by the public health service. The experiment was paid with United States tax dollars and conducted by government doctors. The doctors intended to “record the natural history of syphilis in hopes of justifying treatment programs for blacks” (www.cdc.gov). It was officially named the "Tuskegee Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male" (www.cdc.gov). At the time, it is said that there were over 300,000 new cases of syphilis a year. It was a disease that at the time had no cure. The doctors wanted to study and find ways to treat it effectively. So, in turn, they chose 400 black men, to start with, from Tuskegee, Alabama to be subject to their experiment. They told the men that they would be getting treated for syphilis or “bad blood” as it was often called. Instead of treating them, as the patients believed that they would be, the doctors wanted to study the disease and how it