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Ethics Revision by J Vincent

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Jonathan Vincent

on 23 June 2011

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Transcript of Ethics Revision by J Vincent

Ethics GCSE Revision Ethics is about working out what is right and wrong in life Medical Ethics Abortion Euthanasia Animal Testing Fertility Treatments Gene technology Suicide Abortion has been legal in the UK since 1967. Women can have an abortion up to 24 weeks into the pregnancy if 2 doctors agree that having the baby will bring physical or mental harm to the mother or her other children or if the baby will be born with a disabilty. Christians have different views on abortion depending on how they interpret the Bible. Facts Christian views Women might choose to have an abortion for some of the following reasons: Cannot afford to have a child Pregnancy was the result of rape No support from father It is the mother's body so she can decide for herself what happens to foetus (pro-choice). Women might choose not to have an abortion for some of the following reasons: The foetus is a potential life that could grow up to be someone amazing The foetus hasn't done anything wrong - why should it be punished? From the moment of conception the foetus has different DNA to mother and father - it is a life in its own right (pro-life) Arguments Roman Catholics are totally against all abortion all the time as killing goes against the sanctity of life (God created us in his image = we are special/holy). Church of England are also against abortion but can see that sometimes it might be the lesser of two evils. eg if the mother has been raped or the mother's life was in danger. The Methodist Church applies the teaching of Jesus "love your neighbour" and believes that sometimes abortion might be the most loving thing to do eg if the mother could not cope with anoother child. Abortion is the termination of a foetus before it has been born. Euthanasia literally means a "good death" and refers to ending a person's life who is in great suffering. There are 4 different kinds of euthanasia: Voluntary Euthanasia: the situation where someone dying in pain personally asks a doctor to end his/her life Passive Euthanasia: Nothing is done to actively kill a person but the people involved decide not to give a person drugs/operations/etc to prolong their life. This is not against the law. Active Euthanasia: Someone’s life is actively ended (for example by giving someone an injection of strong drugs). This is illegal. Assisted Suicide: providing a seriously ill person with the means to commit suicide themselves (this is different to euthanasia) “For you (God) knit me together in my mother’s womb” Psalm 139:13 “God gives life and takes it away.” (St Paul’s letter to the Romans) Non-voluntary euthanasia- ending someone’s life painlessly when they are unable to ask, but you have good reason for thinking they would you want you to do so, e.g. switching of a life support machine Arguments For euthanasia: • Suicide is legal, so why not help someone who cannot commit suicide themselves?
• If an animal is suffering, we have it put down as it’s the most humane thing to do, why not people if that is what they want?
• It is a person’s life they have should have the right to end it if they want to.
• It’s not fair for the relatives to have to watch their loved one dying painfully. Arguments Against euthanasia: • Drugs can be used for pain control so we don’t need to end life.
• Euthanasia is just a fancy word for murder.
• Doctor’s take the Hippocratic Oath to save life, it is wrong to ask them to kill people.
• People can better or medical science might find a cure for them.
• If we start here by allowing doctors to end life of terminally ill where will it end? Christian views Christians believe that God created everything and that humans were created in His image (Genesis 1) and were told “do not murder” (Exodus 20). So life is holy, this is known as the Sanctity of Life. Jesus accepted his suffering and death and never tried to escape from it, so Christians believe that this teaches them to preserve and cherish life The Catholic Church teach that no all euthanasia is wrong regardless of the circumstances but do allow “double effect” where painkillers are administered to relieve pain but with the double effect of also ending life quicker The Church of England teach that euthanasia is wrong but do permit passive euthanasia in some circumstances, eg person on life support machine. They teach that old people should be valued in the community more. Suicide is still technically illegal in this country, although people who fail in their suicide attempts are usually helped rather than prosecuted. In the past, Christians thought people who committed suicide would not get eternal life as they would not be able to ask for forgiveness for taking their life (self murder).Today most Christians realise that suicide is the result of great unhappiness, rather than wickedness. They are more compassionate and accept that people must be under a great deal of pressure. Types of Fertility Treatments:

•Artificial Insemination by Husband (AIH) – Putting the husband’s sperm into a woman using an artificial instrument
•Artificial Insemination by Donor (AID) – semen is provided by an anonymous donor
•In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) – an egg is withdrawn from the woman and fertilised with her husband’s sperm in a laboratory. It is then placed into the womb.
•Egg donation – Woman donates her egg and it is fertilised and placed in another woman’s uterus
•Embryo donation – A donated egg is fertilised by donated sperm and the embryo is placed into the woman
•Surrogacy/Womb leasing – woman bears a child for another woman who cannot become pregnant, and hands over the child at birth. The birth mother is legally the baby’s mother. (It is illegal in this country to pay a woman to do this.) Christian Views on Fertility Treatments
•There is no teaching in the Bible on fertility treatments. This technology did not exist in Biblical times.
•In the Bible, if someone couldn’t have children it was believed to be God’s decision:

“Hannah had no children… Because the Lord had closed her womb,” 1 Samuel 1:26

•Christians disagree on the acceptability of fertility treatments:
- Some think if childless couples are unhappy they should be helped to create a human life. It is God’s desire for man to reproduce.
- Others argue that fertility treatments make things happen that are not God’s intention. They worry about ‘spare’ embryos and argue that ‘third parties’ (donors) should not be introduced into a relationship meant for two people Scientists now have the capabilities to alter genes and DNA in order to erradicate certain genetic diseases like Huntingtons' etc as well as alter the genetic makeup of animals and people. Some Christians are wary about changing people's natural state as this is how God has made us. Others see gene technology as a good thing as it makes the world a better place - "love your neighbour" by erradicating diseases! Arguments 1) The Church of England View
Most of the Christian churches agree that the use of animals for medical research is sometimes necessary. The Church of England states:

‘The Church recognises the need for animals to be used in certain research to improve medical understanding, veterinary or behavioural knowledge, and to test the safety of chemicals, and understand that such testing is a requirement of the law. It also, however, affirms that responsible stewardship of the natural world requires all animals to receive careful and sympathetic treatment, both during their lives and in the manner of their dying.’ 3) Other Christians, e.g. Quakers
Do not agree with the view the majority of Christians and are opposed to animals being used for food, experiments, hunting and fishing. They argue that:
• God is the creator of animals as well as humans;
• Humans have a duty to care for animals as part of their duty as stewards of God’s creation; 2) The Roman Catholic View
The Roman Catholic Church agrees that animal experiments are tolerable as long as they are reasonable and the intention is to improve the quality of human health or to save lives. They also accept that animals should be used for food and clothing and they emphasise that animals should not be given exaggerated attention and care when there are humans who are suffering in the world. It is wrong to spend lots of money on expensive dog foods while ignoring people starving around the world. Human Relationships Pre-marital Sex Marriage Homosexuality Divorce Family 1.Sex is to be celebrated:
The Bible’s first instruction to Adam and Eve was to have sex. God created sex as a pleasure, a gift and a joy. Sex should be treated with respect, eg Song of Songs “My lover rises up like cedar of Lebanon” etc 2.Sex is to be controlled:
Most Christians believe that sex belongs within a marriage, and not having sex before marriage and not committing adultery are highly valued. ‘Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit’ 1 Corinthians 6:19 Christian views Why keep sex for marriage?
S – Special Status
E – Eternal relationship
X – eXtra-special
S – Spiritual contract What do the Churches say about sex?

•The Roman Catholic church forbids pre-martial sex and sees it as a grave sin as sex is only for reproduction within a marriage relationship. So for a Roman Catholic couple considering marriage cohabitation is not an option.
•For most Christians, sex is an act of love and commitment as well as reproduction but should take place within marriage relationship.
•Many Christians believe that restricting sex to a marriage relationship is in the best interests of society, children and the individual as the family structure is stabilised and maintained.
•Some Christian groups, recognise that times have changed and are prepared to accept Cohabitation if it is a prelude to marriage. Christian views Christian Teachings
• The Bible forbids same sex relationships. (“It is forbidden for a man to lie with another man” Leviticus 18:22)
• St Paul writes in the book Romans 1:26-8 says that those who do “unnatural things” with someone of the same sex will be punished in hell.
• Many evangelical Christians, who follow the teachings of the Bible, believe that the tendency and practice of homosexuality is sinful and you cannot be a homosexual and Christian.
• Roman Catholics accept that some Christians may have an inclination to be homosexual. In that case, they should lead a celibate (no sex) life.
• The Church of England is divided on the issue with Gene Robinson being elected the first openly gay and practising homosexual to be appointed to the position of Bishop in America.
• Some more Liberal Christians’, such as Quakers, accept that homosexual relationships can be stable, loving, long-tern relationships. Christian teachings
•Family was created by God as the best environment in which a couple can live and raise children.
•The Old Testament refers to the importance of family and God’s first command to humans is to “be fruitful and multiply” (have a family).
•The Gospels show Jesus was a member of a family, cared for his mother and father and even within the Trinity Jesus is the Son of God the Father.
•Having Children is one of the main purposes of Christian marriage.
•Salvation Army believes family life based on marriage is ‘the bedrock of a stable society’ and suggest that the reason there is increased crime and depravation is because family values have been eroded. The facts
Since the 1969 Divorce Act it has become much easier to get a divorce in the UK, as a result, almost half the marriages in UK end in divorce. Where it was once seen as sinful and shameful to get divorced, it is now considered a viable option for couples that cannot live together peacefully. Things that should be done to keep couples together:
Pray together
Talk together
Talk to Vicar
Talk to friends/family
Read the Bible Protestant Churches: Church of England / Methodist Church
• Most Christians do not like the idea of breaking scared promises, especially the vows that are taken before God in the Church as Jesus said “what God has joined let no man separate” • But they recognise that not all marriages work and that some people will want to end their marriages if the couple no longer love each other or there is abuse or adultery. From the beginning of creation God made them male and female. This is why a man must leave his father and mother, and the two become one body. So then, what God has united, man must not divide unless there is unfaithfulness.’ [Matthew 5:32] • The Church of England will allow divorce but may not allow remarriage in the Church, eg Prince Charles and Camilla remarried in the registry office and had only a blessing in the church. Roman Catholic Church
• Does not accept divorce under any circumstance. • If a marriage has broken down, the couple can live apart but they must remain celibate and never into a sexual relationship with anyone else. That would be adultery according to the Bible as they are still married in God’s eyes. • In few cases they are permitted to have an annulment (where it is claimed the relationship was never a marriage in the first place because one partner was forced into it, they were drunk, or they had not yet had sex and so it is dissolved by the Church and the couple can remarry) The purpose of Marriage according to Christians:
• It’s the ideal way for a man and woman to live together in a lifelong relationship (Mark 10:7-8) and bring up children in a stable family unit.
• Marriage is a scared union blessed by God
• Faithfulness is part of a Christian marriage. Key features of the marriage ceremony
• Takes place in a Church in the presence of God who is part of the marriage in the ceremony the priest will say “what God has joined together let no man separate” echoing the words of Jesus
• The couple make vows to each other in the sight of witnesses and God.
• The Bible readings, hymns, prayers and the priest’s talk are about marriage as a symbol of God’s love for humanity.
• There is the giving of rings to symbolise the unending nature of love and marriage
• The priest will declare the couple husband and wife in the sight of God and witnesses
• At the end the couple will sign the marriage register to make the ceremony legally binding under the law Peace, Justice and Religion Equality and Religion Crime and Punishment War & Peace Forgiveness and Reconcilation Aims of punishment:
Protection:- society needs to be kept safe from criminals.
Retribution:- This is based on the belief that victims have the right to make criminals pay for what they have done.
Deterrence:- If people are punished they are less likely to commit crime again (in theory – in reality this is not always true).
Reparation:- criminals have the right to pay for their crime so that they can gain a clean start free from guilt.
Reform:- This type of punishment is positive and constructive to allow criminals the opportunity to change and learn from their mistakes. Criminals are helped to change for the better, making a useful contribution towards society. • People who know exactly what they are doing deserve to die for their crime. ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth’.
• People need to be protected from coldblooded murderers.
• It is a good deterrent; it stops that person from killing again.
• It puts others off who might be tempted to kill, seeing what the consequences are.
• It shows that society will not put up with antisocial and harmful behaviour. • Life is sacred, it is wrong to take a life. Two wrongs don’t make a right. God gives and God takes away.
• A criminal can change. If he or she is murdered they are being deprived of the chance to reform.
• There is little evidence to suggest that capital punishment is a deterrent. People still commit murder in countries that have the death penalty, e.g. America.
• It could turn executed terrorists into religious martyrs.
• Mistakes could be made and innocent people executed. Arguments For death penalty: Arguments Against death penalty: Social Injustice Social injustice - This is the term used to refer to occasions when members of society have fewer rights and privileges than others. Christians believe that all people are equally valuable to God, therefore any form of injustice is always wrong. Christians do not always live up to the standards set for them, but at least in principle, they do all they can to make the world a fairer place for those who live in it.

• The Bible teaches that it is wrong to mistreat the poor and the weak.
• In the Old Testament, the prophets spoke out against social injustice, telling people God saw what they were doing and would punish them, unless they changed their ways.
• In the New Testament, Christians are warned against ignoring the poor: Opinion one: JUST WAR
War is a necessary evil at times
Most Christians – war is sometimes necessary to overcome evil, for example in defence of your own country or another country or people (When Hitler threatened the Jewish race and tried to control the world with Nazism - WWII). They appeal to examples in the Old Testament in the Bible were God commands the people of Israel to fight – if God was really against it surely He would never have done this? Opinion two: PACIFISM
Some Christians – war is never acceptable in any circumstances, for example pacifists such as Quakers hold this opinion, they state “We utterly deny all outward wars and strife and fighting with outward weapons, for any end, or under any pretence whatever.”
People who oppose violence are called pacifists. In times of war, these people are called ‘conscientious objectors’ – their consciences tell them to object to war. They were often seen as cowards by others and during WWII were forced to wear a white flower to symbolise this.
They would:
• Refuse to fight as soldiers
• Refuse to work in arms production
• But would serve in other ways, e.g. nursing, removing dying from battle field Racism Christian attitudes to other religions Sexism The facts
• Women in Britain have always had the right to own property and work but have historically had less rights compared to men for example, in 1900 only 15% of women worked and many employers wouldn’t employ a married woman.
• Women did not have the right to vote at the same age as men (21 years old) until 1928!
• In 1975 the Sex Discrimination Act meant that women had to be paid the same as men for the same job and it became illegal to discriminate on the grounds of gender.
• However, women today still on average earn nearly 17% less than men and are still prevented from being promoted in some jobs (“glass ceiling”). Most Protestant Christians including Church of England and Methodists believe that women should be allowed to be priests and base their argument on Jesus’ teachings of “love your neighbour” and St Paul’s statement “there is no difference between Jew or non-Jew, men or women…all are equal in Christ” (Galatians 3:28). Although the Church of England does permit women to be priests, it does not allow women to be bishops or archbishops. Some Evangelical Protestant groups argue that men and women should have different roles in the home and the Church; they believe that the Bible is the unalterable word of God and base their case largely on St. Paul’s teachings “Women should remain silent in the churches…They are not allowed to speak” (St Paul’s letter to the Corinthians 14:34), and the fact Jesus had 12 male apostles. Roman Catholic Church believes men and women to have equal roles in life, but they do not think this is the case in Church leadership. They point to the fact that Jesus (a man) personally nominated Peter (a man) to lead the Church means that only men should lead in Church – therefore women can have a role but not be priests. The facts
The UK has long been a racially mixed society and has traditionally been a nation that has welcomed and offered asylum to those suffering persecution abroad, eg Jews during WWII and those from Commonwealth countries such as India or West Indies who fought for the Allies. As a result UK has become a very multi-ethnic society.
Racism has existed for as long as there have been different races living in the same place, in Britain and America the most obvious example is slavery where black people were abducted from their homes and sold to work for free, much of modern industrialisation was financed by the slave trade.
In UK it became illegal to discriminate against a person because of their race in 1976 with the Race Relations Act.
Racism still exists today in both overt (open and obvious) and institutional (ingrained in systems of government or other institutions) forms. Benefits of living in a multi-ethnic country The UK has a wide variety of music, culture, food and clothes from different cultures. New ideas arrive in the UK with new people. It can make for a more peaceful world as people of different races and nationalities learn to live and work alongside each other. It is good for religions to see members of different ethnic groups following their religion. Christians and Racism
• The Bible opens with a description about God creating everyone in his own image (Genesis 1:27).
• The Bible condemns racism with statements from Jesus such as “Love your neighbour as yourself” (Luke 10) or St Paul’s words “God does not show favouritism but accepts men from every nation” (Acts 10:34-35).
• All Christian Churches today are committed to racial harmony – the Church of England today have the Race and Community Relations Committee who watch over issues of race in the Church.
• Jesus himself treated members of different races equally, he healed a Roman’s servant (Luke 7:1-10) and tradition suggests that Simon of Cyrene who carried Jesus’ cross was black.
• There have however been instances where Christians have acted in a racist way, for example many of the members of the KKK in America would have considered themselves Christians and the Dutch Reform Church in South Africa openly supported the Apartheid laws which discriminated against non-white people Multi-faith society
All 6 of the major faith groups (Christianity, Islam, Sikhism, Judaism, Hinduism and Buddhism) are represented in Britain but according to the last census 72% of people in the UK said they were Christian. Britain has increasingly become a multi-faith society and is considered to have complete religious freedom. Many religions now come together through inter-faith organisations looking for opportunities to explore similarities and common ground. 1. Exclusivism 2. Inclusivism 3. Pluralism Some Christians (Evangelical Christians) believe that only those who follow Christianity will go to heaven. Others religions have got it wrong and so it would be right to try and convert a non-believer to Christianity. Some Christians (Roman Catholics) believe that while all religions can help people reach God, only Christianity has the complete answer. While other faiths should be respected, the right path should be explained to them. Some Christians (Liberal Christians) believe that all religions will lead to God, none is superior and none is wrong. People are free to follow the path that best suits them. Forgiveness is the act of no longer blaming someone for what they have done. Jesus said that people should forgive 70 times 7 times and that God would only forgive us if we forgive others. Anthony Walke's mum and sister forgave the killers of their son/brother. Reconciliation is restoring broken relationships. In South Africa Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu set up the Truth and Reconciliation Conference to allow black and white people the chance to say sorry and forgive each other. by J Vincent 2011 (a) What is an extended family? (1 mark) (b) Give 2 benefits of being able to divorce more easily today (2 marks) (c) Outline Christian views on marriage (3 marks) (d) Explain what Christians think about homosexuality. (6 marks) (e) "Couples should stay married 'until death do us part'." Do you agree? Think about both sides and refer to Christianity. (12 marks) (a) What is surrogacy? (1 mark) (b) Give 2 problems people might have about gene technology. (2 marks) (c) Outline Christian views about IVF. (3 marks) (d) Explain what Christians believe about euthaasia. (6 marks) (e) "Animals should have just the same rights as humans" Do you agree? Look at both sides and refer to Christianity. (12 marks) (a) What is reconciliation? (1 mark) (b) Give 2 of the aims of punishment (2 marks) (c) What do Christians believe about forgiveness? (3 marks) (d) Explain what the just war theory is (6 marks) (e) "War is never right" Do you agree? Look at both sides and refer to Christianity. (12 marks) (a) What is a multi-faith society? (1 mark) (b) Give 2 reasons why some Churches don't allow women to be priests (2 marks) (c) Why are people racist in today's society? (3 marks) (d) Explain what Christians believe about other religions (6 marks) (e) "Women and men are entirely equal" Do you agree? Look at both sides and refer to Christianity. (12 marks)
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