PSYC 3850 Chapter Notes - Chapter 13: Intellectual Disability, Terri Schiavo Case, Genetic Testing

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Attitudes toward and treatment of people with id has always reflected philosophies of human existence and human worth. Source of ethics: rules that guide or govern conduct and define what"s good or bad. Historically, ill treatments of people with id were accepted as best for society"s interest. In today"s society, much has been condemned as barbaric and unethical, but much hypocrisy remains. Each of us operates on the basis of some set of guiding principles that are the basis for a code of ethics governing our behavior. Two philosophic positions frame our discussion: utilitarianism- based on the premise that any action is right if it leads to the greatest good for the greatest number of people. An individual only has those rights granted by the larger society. Strictly following this view leads to the rights of some being maintained while the rights of others being diminished. Both views represent polarized viewpoints of the rights and worth of individuals.

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