Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Last Tuesday, I gave a presentation over Jenna Talackova, a transgender woman who was disqualified for allegedly frauding her gender on her application for the Miss Universe Canada pageant. I will be writing a paper over this case and using the ethical system ultitarianism to decide what decision will benefit the greatest amount of stakeholders involved.

The Miss Universe Organization says they currently have a question on the application asking each contestant if they were naturally born females. After researching this issue, is this question even answerable? Is being considered a female only relevant by the external anatomy of a human being? Gender defects can happen with anyone. A woman born with testes in the place of her ovaries is no less of a woman. Just means she is unable to have children. Or what about a man who has high levels of estrogen but his body refuses to acknowledge them? Does that make him any less of a man?

For Jenna, she has considered herself a female since the age of 4. Until her reassignment surgery at the age of 19, she says she hated looking at her naked body in the mirror. She was ashamed of her male genitals because she is not a man. I want to make an argument that someone considering themselves a certain gender from birth can be considered a "naturally born female" and jenna did not falsify her application for the pageant.

The Miss Universe Organization has since reversed their decision and are letting Jenna compete May 19, 2012. Jenna is thankful and is looking forward to the pageant competition.

I feel the Miss Universe Organization failed to consider all angles of their decision when they hastedly disqualified Jenna. If they had considered the Potter Box theory and looked at all the stakeholders, I believe they would have chosen to let Jenna compete. The other contestants were never considered in the pageant. Not current, alumni, or prospective contestants. Jenna has helped open a window for women who have a story behind their gender and the anatomy they were born with. I hope all female organizations see this case and chose to reword their contracts accordingly. I do not disagree with the question about being a natural born female. I believe they need to add rules about being considered a female in their country to the contract to cover thoes who may not be considered a "traditional female."

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Abducted newborn found alive

Being from Spring, Texas, the story of the woman who fatally shot a mother for her 3 day child is fresh on everyone's mind. A woman leaving a pediatric clinic with her son Keegan was confronted by a woman and shot before her baby was stolen away from her. The baby was found alive and the woman is now in custody.

The Palavar Tree Mode works for this situation. While there was a sense of emergency with a child being abducted, the use of the community gathering to help find the culprit was great. Witnesses gave a good description of the woman and what she was driving. The community kept a lookout for the woman and the baby which ultimately ended with the baby being found alive.

Right now the police should give more information about the reasoning behind the killing and kidnapping. Harmony over the truth is all over the place with the citizens of Houston. Most find it odd an African American woman would want a White baby. Many think the mother was into the baby selling black market and that is why she was killed. So many theories are being tossed around that the murder of the mother is being overshadowed by rumors. Police need to get details straight and let the public know so everyone knows the truth. The dead mother is being slandered by opinions that most likely are not true.

Communitarian with the Trayvon Martin Case

Communitarian is an ethical system that looks into what is ethical when it comes to the community's responsibility. Taking on this means knowing the difference between positive and negative rights. This is currently the situation involving the death of Trayvon Martin and whether his killer George Zimmerman deserves to a murder trial.

George Zimmerman was the crime watch security set for his gated community. He has dreams of becoming a police officer but is not actually employed as one or a security guard. Zimmerman believed he was doing the right thing when he decided to follow 17 year old Martin through his neighborhood. Martin looked suspicious and Zimmerman had every right to protect his community, right?

The truth is that Zimmerman called 911 to report a suspicious guy in a hoodie sweatshirt walking around his neighborhood. The police said they would be on their way and for Zimmerman to stop following the teenager. Instead, Zimmerman took the law into his own hands which ended with him fatally shooting Martin. Martin was going to his dad's condo located in the neighborhood wearing a sweatshirt because it was raining while holding a bag of Skittles and an Iced Tea.

Zimmerman's positive rights is that he has the right to shoot someone who has entered his house uninvited and who is trying to harm him and his belongings. Florida has a Stand Your Ground law which permits a person to act in self-defense when in a threatening situation. The negative rights are that Zimmerman should have let the police handle the situation once he had called 911. There was no need for him to continue to follow a teenager who was not doing anything wrong. Zimmerman's sense of responsibility for his community overstepped his judgment and now he is facing a murder charge.

It is tough to see the fine line between the positive and negative rights in Communitarian. Americans are programmed in society to act in a good Samaritan way, but when do these responsibilities end? This tragic story will unfortunately continue with more than one life being hurt. Martin will never back but but hopefully the laws can change to prevent this overstepping of Communitarian again.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Ethics of Eating Meat

My opinion of eating meat is that the ends is the nutrients we as humans need to the means of killing animals to receive them.

I believe eating meat is a circle of life and will always be done. On that note, I do think people eat too much meat and the production ethics are inhumane. Humans have been eating meat since their existence, so have carnivore animals. The production of these animals being feed unhealthy things is the reason America is so unhealthy.

Other countries eat meat, but not nearly the amount that we eat. They also eat fresh, naturally grown animals and live without the diseases and issues that we face in America. If we chose to eat meat when it is necessary and not available, then meat companies would not have to be growing and multiplying these animals so intensely.

It is impossible to change these ways because these meat companies are all going after the money. People will buy their meat and that is what they want. Consumers can insist on the humane production processes but how far will it go. I always have appreciated companies who say they treat their animals correctly. I do not know what that exactly means, and now writing this blog it is discomforting.

I do not know the answer to is it ethical to eat meat, but I do think we can change our production of the meat processing business.

Mass Suicide at FoxConn Company about Apple Products

Written March 29, 2012

For this weeks blog we were asked to write about Apple. I googled Apple ethics and found a disturbing article in the telegraph about workers threatening a mass suicide at their place of work in China.

Around 150 Chinese workers at Foxconn, an Apple manufacturer, threatened to commit suicide by leaping from their factory roof in protest at their working conditions. The workers were eventually coaxed down after two days on top of their third floor plant in Wuhan by Foxconn managers and local Chinese Communist party officials.

The latest protest began on January 2 after managers decided to move 600 workers to a new production line for Apple. The ethical question is should Apple be responsible for these conditions?

Is it impossible to say that people will stop using Apple products. Is it crazy to think that the company could do something about it? Apple must be a huge business for Foxconn and I am sure they do not want to lose them as a customer. Apple is influencial and big enough to stand up to Foxconn and tell them to improve worker conditions.

The fact is Apple is doing nothing. We as consumers should take notice and pressure them to do the right thing. It is easier said than done but it is sickening for me to think I have a iphone that I did not pay for. I used my contract upgrade to get my iphone. I do not like to think that workers in horrible condition made my free iphone.

Hopefully, Apple will take control of this issue. Even though this event happened two months ago, maybe the company will change their code of ethics to accompany all aspects of their manufacturing process.

The Ethics behind Entry Level Positions

Written March 15, 2012

Since I am graduating in May, I have been on the intense job search that so many students are doing. I have completed seven job interviews with different companies that I believe have gone very well. My frustration is not on the fact that I still do not have a job, but on the fact that I am feeling so discouraged after interviews that I do not want to work there.

My experience and background have been in Marketing and sales. Naturally, the companies that have been accepting my resume on Frogjobs have been just that. Companies that claim they are "marketing firms." Once I am screened and pass a telephone interview, I am invited to come to the office for the first round of interviews.

Most of these companies have been great. I walk into a nice office, meet with someone, and have been invited back to the second round. I have noticed it strange that I am asking more questions than the interviewer and getting seemly vague answers. I never exactly get the job descriptions and I am convinced to return back to the second rounds of interviews.

My ethical problem comes with the way I was treated on one of these interviews. At a marketing firm, I came back to be told I will "shadow" an employee the entire day. Ok, great I get to see the culture and attitude. But oh no. I was ordered to climb in the car with someone I did not know. I was reluctant and embarrassed with how uncomfortable I felt. I asked the employee what we were doing and they said going to go make sales. I did not know this person, nor did I want to get in their car. I soon realized this was a door to door sales job, which I do not want. I politely said my apologizes and my good byes and got into my own car to go home.

I have been very disappointed that these employers on Frogjobs believe that vunerable students who have freshly graduated will want these positions. It is unethical to be so vague about a job description. It is unethical to ask a young woman to ride in the car with a stranger. It is unethical to pawn off these undesired jobs to young grads.

Needless to say, I have become discouraged with Frogjobs and am now using personal contacts to receive e-mails to potential jobs. I want a job I am proud of, not with some unethical company who will hire anyone. My job search is still underway and I know it will work out for the best in the future. I wish everyone was required to take Dr. Lambiase's ethical class to learn what not to do!

Kony 2012

Written March 7, 2012

Stop Kony Campaign is a nationwide spread youtube video that has hit 75 million views this week. The film documents Invisible Children's plans and efforts to arrest Joseph Kony. It describes Kony's brutal guerilla warfare tactics with his rebel group, the LRA.

While Kony is making a big impact on the viral video world, questions have come up with the effort. Why now? Joseph Kony has been committing these crimes for decades. The viewers of this video have been advertised and passed around by the younger generation.

My parents' generation have known about the troubles in Africa but are not exactly falling for this video. It is younger viewers passing the video along on social media websites telling others to become supporters.

75 million views is very impressive. This truly shows the strength of social media and what impact it has on our society. I am curious to see the criticisms that will arise from this Kony 2012 campaign. Hopefully, they will be able to help these people and find Joseph Kony. Personally, I watched three minutes of the video and turned it off.