Problems Brewing for Pro-lifers in Illinois – An ethical assessment of SB 1564

The Illinois General Assembly is considering a bill that will have grave effects on the freedom of conscience of Catholic hospitals and pro-life healthcare workers.  Senate Bill 1564, which passed the Illinois Senate in April and is now before the … Read

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Caring When There Is No Cure – Part 2

In my previous brief, we focused on providing palliative care, when curing is not possible.  Today, we continue our discussion with the promised focus on proportionality.  First, however, we should review a few terms: Euthanasia is when one person brings … Read

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Do Treatments for Ectopic Pregnancy Constitute Intentional Killing?

What should a woman do if she becomes pregnant with an ectopically-placed embryo? The purpose of this essay is not to give therapeutic advice.  It is rather to offer moral instruction on adopting alternatives consistent with moral principles. The term … Read

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Is It Ethical To Create Babies From Three DNA Sources? Absolutely Not

On Monday, February 2, the UK Parliament voted to permit the creation of “three-parent embryos.”  If the House of Lords follows suit next month, which is expected, the UK will become the first country in the world to permit the … Read

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Precocious Puberty and Ethical Decision-Making

A Catholic mom recently sought my advice on a weighty medical decision for her young daughter with which she and her husband are struggling.  Although the specifics of the case are not so common, the form of the underlying ethical … Read

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Nasal Cells, iPS Cells and Adult Stem Cells—The Advance of Regenerative Medicine

A Polish fireman whose spinal cord was completely severed due to a knife attack has regained the limited ability to walk, thanks to a successful transplant of his own nasal cells into the site of the injury.  This news should … Read

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Ebola Vaccines: Who Cares About Ethics When Money Is Concerned?

Ebola has found its way from Liberia to Texas.  If the press is any indication, you might say that we in the West have finally awakened and smelled the proverbial coffee. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), as of … Read

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Amazing Robots – Can Machines be Moral?

I’m not a Calvinist, but a Catholic.  And although I don’t accept the doctrine of the total depravity of human nature, my rejection rests upon more lofty premises than that “humans are just better than that.”  Luther and Calvin were … Read

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Help for Children in Distress: Is Medication the Answer?

Bullied, stressed by pressures of examinations, and otherwise finding it hard to cope with life, a recent article highlighted the plight of thousands of British children.  Unfortunately, the Brits are not alone.    In 2000, the U.S. Surgeon General estimated that … Read

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The HHS Mandate and the Problem of Assessing Material Cooperation

Is it legitimate for business owners who want to provide health insurance to their employees to comply with the odious contraception mandate of the Affordable Care Act (hereafter simply “mandate”)? Answering this question requires two stages of moral analysis. The … Read

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