Posted on Feb 12, 2013
There are certain things we can all agree on.
We don't agree on whether extreme public sexual expression is immoral. We don't agree on what constitutes “extreme.” We really disagree on the ethics of same-sex “marriage.”
But we do agree in holding science in high esteem. For the most part we hold scientists in high esteem, not just for their contribution to knowledge but because they're generally trustworthy.
I'm sure we could also agree that one of the great virtues of the sciences is their insistence on ethics; for instance that research on human subjects is only done where the risks are outweighed by potential benefits, and if the risk/benefit equation is unclear, the humans in the experiment always have the chance to give informed consent.
That's part of what makes science and scientists trustworthy, and when they violate that trust—it's infrequent, but it happens—we all know it's wrong.
We can all agree on that, can't we?
Then why can't we agree on what follows from it? Listen to John Stonestreet speak about Beyonce and the Super Bowl, and on Research Ethics and Same-Sex “Marriage;” and see my related article, When There Are No Experts.
We're experimenting blindly on future generations who can't give informed consent. You don't have to be a Christian to see how unethical that is. It's obviously wrong, by any human standard.