Bioethics @ TIU

New Moral Anesthesia for Abortion

Posted April 17th, 2018 by Mark McQuain

“Is it possible, once again, to hold in tension seemingly opposite ideas about abortion?” This is the main question asked by Dr. Lisa Harris in the lead editorial in the April 12, 2018 NEJM. Her concern is that in her view, since the creation in January of the new Conscience and Religious Freedom division at HHS, subsequent comments by HHS leaders “suggest that they are… // Read More »

The Child I Want

Posted April 2nd, 2018 by Neil Skjoldal

I appreciate the honesty of Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus. Watching various states attempt to enact more and more restrictions on abortion, she wrote of her strong personal feelings regarding the importance of keeping abortion legal. The headline certainly grabs our attention: “I would’ve aborted a fetus with Down syndrome. Women need that right.” Noting how cute the new “Gerber Baby” is, Marcus reminds her… // Read More »

Distorted views of the human person

Posted December 20th, 2017 by Steve Phillips

After writing about how the events of the first Christmas influence how we think about personhood I read something that made me realize how distorted some of the views of personhood are in our society. I was reading an essay by James Toomey in the Hastings Center Bioethics Forum titled “Is Noninvasive Prenatal Genetic Testing Eugenic?” Toomey was responding to an earlier article by Vardit… // Read More »

Regarding objections to the change in the contraceptive coverage rule

Posted October 19th, 2017 by Jon Holmlund

The Journal of the American Medical Association carries a “Viewpoint” piece that categorically rejects the Trump administration’s reversal of its predecessor’s mandate that employer-based health insurance include payments for contraceptives.  As reported in the general press, the current administration’s new stance was hailed by religious and other political conservatives as a welcome support of conscience rights. Read the article here.  Briefly, some key points and… // Read More »

Human gene editing marches on

Posted October 5th, 2017 by Jon Holmlund

Nature has recently carried two new reports of human gene editing.  In one, embryos donated from an IVF clinic had a gene critical to very early development altered, to study what happens when you do that, and try to understand early human development more than we now do.  In the other, scientists studied editing of an abnormal recessive gene, specifically the one causing a type… // Read More »

Pray Tell, What Does Harvey have to do with Abortion?

Posted September 3rd, 2017 by Philip Thompson

Nothing brings out the true color of people as clearly as a national catastrophe such as hurricane Harvey. “Beautiful” has been the color of the vast majority of people who have been victims of, or responders to, one of the worst natural disasters in U.S. history. Many people who watched their houses and possessions float away, who must have wondered how they will ever recover… // Read More »

Fetal tissue and commerce

Posted August 24th, 2017 by Jon Holmlund

You may have seen in the general press that Indiana University is asking a federal judge to declare unconstitutional that state’s law banning research on the remains of aborted fetuses.  I noticed an article in the Wall Street Journal (subscription required).  An open-access account can be found here. I oppose abortion, but I can imagine for the sake of argument that, if one allows for… // Read More »

Search and destroy—or at least, select

Posted August 17th, 2017 by Jon Holmlund

This week’s issue of Nature carries a feature article on the explosion of preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) in China.  Because women are having children later in life, partly because of relaxation of the old one-child policy; because Chinese culture sees it as a duty to seek to bear healthy children; because some Chinese want to try to enable their kids to exploit some features of… // Read More »

Voltaire and Alternative Definitions

Posted June 19th, 2017 by Mark McQuain

“If you wish to converse with me,” said Voltaire, “define your terms.” How many a debate would have been deflated into a paragraph if the disputants had dared to define their terms! This is the alpha and omega of logic, the heart and soul of it, that every important term in serious discourse shall be subjected to strictest scrutiny and definition. It is difficult, and… // Read More »

Educating the church about how to think about bioethics

Posted June 14th, 2017 by Steve Phillips

Janie Valentine’s post on Monday about a Christian health sharing ministry considering the surgical treatment of ectopic pregnancy to be the moral equivalent of abortion points out a major concern related to the church and bioethics. This is particularly a concern regarding the evangelical Protestant church and bioethics. With its hierarchical structure the Roman Catholic Church has a way of connecting the well considered thoughts… // Read More »