Medical Ethics

Hallstatt town square.jpg
Hallstatt square in Austria Alps mountain
Hallstatt Town Square, Licensed via Adobe Stock

A New Foundation for Positive Cultural Change

Pinker argues that the fundamental premise of ethics has been disproved by science. "Ethical theory," he writes, "requires idealizations like free, sentient, rational, equivalent agents whose behavior is uncaused." Yet, "the world, as seen by science, does not really have uncaused events." Read More ›

Doing the DNA dance

The uncoiling, unraveling and decoding of the DNA structure by the Humane Genome Project and the Celera Genomics Group is a magnificent scientific achievement and monumental medical milestone. But what does it really mean to the rest of us mortals? To begin with, it means much less than most people think, hope or worry. As diagnostic physicians, we've been trying to come up with a good analogy. Perhaps figuring out the sequence of the chemical elements in human DNA is like finding a huge pile of ancient document scraps in an unknown language and using computers to help sort out the correct order and position of the symbols. But even when sorted out, how could we figure out what the symbols mean? In DNA, scientists have figured out the ordering of the language symbols but don't know what most of the message means. Read More ›