Category: 2020

2020, Academic Paper

Human Costs of Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing on the High Seas: Threats to Global Security and Human Ethics

CARLY GLICKENHAUS

Perpetuated by the insatiable global appetite for cheap protein, illegal, unregulated, and unreported (IUU) fishing has become a dangerous norm in today’s food supply chain. In international waters far beyond the shores of formal governance, the momentum of a vicious status quo seems impossible to challenge. Stripping the oceans of fish stocks with impunity, IUU operations have also been closely tied to human trafficking, the trade of human beings for forced labor, often by means of fraud, coercion, and violence. High seas fishing vessels remain at sea for long periods of time, keeping workers captive through distance, danger, and debt. Tens of millions of people working aboard thousands of illegal fishing vessels on the high seas have no recourse to adjudicate labor abuse claims, like wage theft and inhumane working conditions. Despite all 21st century technology, at least one ship sinks every three days on the global ocean. U.S. consumption of IUU fish products undermines our own security paradigm, which perceives the corruption of democratic values as a threat to national security. Throughout its history, the U.S. has gone to war time after time to preserve institutional and cultural notions of justice in the world order. However, the U.S. subverts its own credibility to promote its vision of morality if our routine practices enslave seafarers abroad.

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2020, Academic Paper

Nancy Eiesland’s Reimagined Theology of Disability

WILLIAM MISCIAGNA

Nancy Eiesland describes her experiences with her Christian faith and religious community as a disabled individual in “Encountering the Disabled God.” Eiesland argues that the church must develop a more inclusive “liberating theology of disability” centered around the systemic social and political needs of community members. Her idea of a “disabled Christ” allows individuals to find sense of spirituality through knowledge of oneself and to reimagine disability as a sign of wholeness and unity.

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2020, Journalistic Reporting

Yes, Your Traveling is Ruining our Planet. But Don’t Stop Now

GRACE BUONO

During my gap year between high school and coming to Georgetown, my air travel alone in nine months accounted for roughly four average household emissions for a single-family home in my Chicago neighborhood. Grappling with the impact I managed to leave on the planet after just a single year, I was left with one question: given our current climate crisis, is travel morally justified? This article attempts to answer that question through research and moral frameworks. Meant to function not only as a piece of published journalism, but a persuasive read, I conclude that it can often take seeing the world to commit to saving it.

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2020, Academic Paper

“What’s past is prologue”: The Consideration of Health Interventions

PATRICK WASLH

Global health is a field that revolves around the intervention. Intervention into the health of countries, others, and ourselves. By reading the news, there will be announcements of campaigns, investments, or outbreaks that impact how countries, organizations, and people intervene. Yet, to fully understand the nature of global health interventions, it is necessary to investigate these interventions holistically: who intervenes, how do they do so, what is their motivation, what is their design, and how are they measured. Each of these involve important ethical questions on motivations, methods, evidence collection, and autonomy in a world reliant on biological and medical understandings in the health sphere. Without understanding the ethical implications of health interventions, they may continue to cause harm to a population while attempting to help.
This academic paper offers a deep dive into these evaluative questions to answer the question: what is at the core of these global health interventions? In the history of global health since the genesis of its contemporary form in the late 19th century, there have been numerous illustrative examples that I use to explore the historical, political, and methodical trends in global health interventions. I utilize previous literature on case studies and these trends to synthesize a critical analysis on these core questions in intervening and utilize a bioethics in policy framework to provide commentary on this analysis.
This analysis highlights that, in an attempt to improve the health of others, underlying motivations, methods, and design demonstrate trends of unethical policy that has promoted harm or challenges under the guise of helping others. This applies to self-interested motives for intervention, short-sighted intervention designs that make no long-term investments, commodification of health and people, and historical legacies that remain unaddressed. This analysis then suggests that inclusion, self-empowerment, and acknowledgment of these legacies can contribute to an ethical and sustainable framework of global health that critically considers from the impacts of previous interventions.

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2020, Journalistic Reporting

Forced Sterilizations Devastate Lives in South Africa

SONYA HU

Severe stigma against HIV, in conjunction with discrimination resulting from gender and race, has resulted in a preponderance of forced sterilizations in South Africa. A new report from the South African Government’s Commission for Gender Equality, released on February 25, 2020, documents 48 instances of the forced sterilization of black HIV-positive women. These women were often pressured into signing consent forms, as physicians often threatened to withhold treatment if they failed to agree. Furthermore, the paperwork was frequently presented while the women were in severe pain and/or already en route to the operating room for a separate procedure. Many other women were not even informed that the operation had taken place and learned of their infertility years later. While these practices are allegedly intended to halt the transmission of HIV from mothers to their children, forced sterilizations further the marginalization that these patients already face as a result of stigmas associated with HIV, womanhood, and race. Furthermore, as a violation of informed consent, forced sterilization contradicts international norms concerning human rights and medical ethics, as well as South Africa’s own laws regarding autonomy, consent, and sterilization. This article aims to highlight the plight of HIV-positive women in South Africa and the severe violation of ethical principles posed by forced sterilization. This article was originally published online by The Caravel on March 4, 2020.

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2020, Literary + Creative

Guzaarish: A Bioethical Film Analysis

AASHNA REDDY

This film analysis explores the bioethical issue of euthanasia in India. In today’s society and media, disability is often misrepresented. The meaning of dying a “good” death is explored through films like Guzaarish that serve as vehicles to educate the public and simply bring awareness to the issue. This piece highlights some of the complexities and significance for our society, now more than ever, to pay close attention to the impact and possible unintended consequences of legalized euthanasia.

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2020, Academic Paper

Physician Assisted Suicide and its Implications

AASHNA REDDY

Today, more than ever, we see the importance of using a bioethical lens in our analysis. Physician assisted suicide has several implications. Often confused with euthanasia, it is important that everyone, not only the medical community, be educated about bioethical issues like this. Understanding the foundations of these bioethical issues allow it to be applied to real life cases that we are seeing in society today.

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2020, Academic Paper

Exploring Discrimination in Climate Change Policies: Intertwining Disability Justice and Climate Justice

ANNA LANDRE

Though the international community has made significant strides to include marginalized groups such as women, low-income communities, and indigenous people in climate justice, the same cannot be said for people with disabilities (Kosanic, et. al. 2019). While existing research has explored how the effects of climate change negatively impact people with disabilities, this paper analyzes how even adaptation and mitigation practices, which seek to combat such effects, may do harm to disability communities across the globe. In order to reduce such harms in the present and avoid them in the future, the international community must employ ethical frameworks that bring disability justice to the forefront of climate justice.

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2020, Journalistic Reporting

GU Health Services Lack Adequate Accessibility for Students

KRISTEN GARINO

Since the opening of Georgetown’s Student Health Center, students have expressed concerns that the facility provides inadequate treatment to its patients. But these concerns are accompanied by claims that the health insurance plan offered to students at Georgetown is insufficiently clear in what it covers, as well as posing a financial barrier to students unable to afford insurance.

This article is the culmination of an investigation into Georgetown’s Health Services, focusing on accessibility issues surrounding the student health center and Georgetown’s student health insurance policy, known as the Premier Plan. It seeks to explore the degree to which the university is ethically responsible for the health and wellbeing of its students, as well as the ways in which student healthcare can be improved on campus.

This piece was written for The Hoya, and it was originally published in print and online by The Hoya on January 31, 2020.

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