American Bioethics: Crossing Human Rights and Health Law Boundaries

By George J. Annas | Go to book overview

3
The Man on the Moon

Genetics has been not only the most superheated scientific arena of the past decade, it has also been a feverish battlefield for American bioethics. And no area has elicited as much controversy as the speculative prospect of genetic engineering—the subject of this and the next chapter.1 We cannot know what human life will be like a thousand years from now, but we can and should think seriously about what we would like it to be like. What is unique about human beings and about being human; what makes humans human? What qualities of the human species must we preserve to preserve humanity itself? What would a “better human” be like? If genetic engineering techniques work, are there human qualities we should try to temper and others we should try to enhance? If human rights and human dignity depend on our human nature, can we change our “humanness” without undermining our dignity and our rights? At the outset of the third millennium, we can begin our exploration of these questions by looking back on some of the major events and themes of the past 1000 years in Western civilization and the primitive human instincts they illustrate.

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American Bioethics: Crossing Human Rights and Health Law Boundaries
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Acknowledgments vii
  • Contents ix
  • Introduction xiii
  • I - Bioethics and Human Rights 1
  • 1: Bioethics and Bioterrorism 3
  • 2: Human Rights and Health 19
  • 3: The Man on the Moon 27
  • 4: The Endangered Human 43
  • 5: The Right to Health 59
  • 6: Capital Punishment 69
  • II - Bioethics and Health Law 79
  • 7: Conjoined Twins 81
  • 8: Patient Rights 95
  • 9: White Coat Police 105
  • 10: Partial Birth Abortion 121
  • 11: The Shadowlands 135
  • 12: Waste and Longing 149
  • Concluding Remarks - Bioethics, Health Law, and Human Rights Boundary Crossings 159
  • Appendix A - Universal Declaration of Human Rights 167
  • Appendix B - International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 175
  • Appendix C - International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights 195
  • Appendix D - The Nuremberg Code 205
  • Notes 207
  • Index 237
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