Tag Archives: mothers

The Unethical Opposition To Tennessee’s Fetal Drug Abuse Protection Law

200439961-001Tennessee is one of the most activist states that it comes to protecting children; for example, it has the among most stringent laws in the nation regarding the mandatory reporting of suspected child abuse. It also has a new law that just went into effect this month that allows officials to arrest mothers for assault who illegally use narcotics while they are pregnant if the child is born with symptoms indicating that the drug use impaired the child’s condition.

Predictable and tiresomely, the media and “war on women” scolds are attacking this is yet another incursion on the rights of women to have dominion over their own bodies. Think Progress, dishonestly, calls it a “pregnancy criminalization law.”  This is intentional misrepresentation, a TP specialty. The law doesn’t criminalize pregnancy in any way, by even the most distorted interpretation.  The knee-jerk opposition to the law highlights the problems of consistency and integrity that the women’s rights and pro-abortion forces have in all the areas relating to childbirth. Essentially, their position is that if conduct is related to child birth—or preventing it—in any way, anything they say, want or do must be accepted, and asserting otherwise, no matter what the justification, makes the government an oppressor of women. Continue reading


Filed under Bioethics, Childhood and children, Gender and Sex, Government & Politics, Health and Medicine, Journalism & Media, Law & Law Enforcement, Rights

Ethics Hero, Mother’s Day Division: NBA MVP Kevin Durant


Just in time to temporarily relieve the National Basketball Association from public exposure of its expediency, hypocrisy and criminalization of thought, and also just in time for Mother’s Day, Oklahoma Thunder forward Kevin Durant delivered an ethics slam-dunk of an acceptance speech when he was honored with the league’s Most Valuable Player Award.

‘Tis not always thus. Another NBA great, Michael Jordan, revealed the bleakness of his character in his nauseating speech upon being admitted to pro basketball’s Hall of Fame, settling old grudges and celebrating himself. Durant, in glorious contrast, was graceful, humble, sincere, gracious, and filled with gratitude, particularly toward his mother, who was in the audience. It takes a sense of fairness, respect and perspective, as well as confidence,  to use the spotlight at an event that honors you to shift attention to others, and that is what Durant did. His speech itself is proof that his mother raised him well, and his words drove the message home:

“One my best memories I have is when we moved into our first apartment. No bed, no furniture, we all just sat in the living room and just hugged each other. We thought we made it. … You wake me up in the middle of the night in the summertime, making me run up a hill, making me do push-ups. Screaming at me from the sidelines of my games at eight or nine years old … When you didn’t eat, you made sure we ate. You went to sleep hungry. You sacrificed for us. You’re the real MVP.”

Here is his entire speech, displaying an ethical character that can’t be faked.


Filed under Character, Childhood and children, Ethics Heroes, Family, Love, Sports, U.S. Society

Just So We’re Clear: Some School Sexual Predators Are More Unethical Than Others

lunchladyJanelle Foley, 32,  who works in the cafeteria of Chapman Middle School in Weymouth, Mass., was charged with four counts of statutory rape for having sexual relations with a 15 year old student at the school during the Thanksgiving and New Year holidays.

This is statutory rape, and wrong, but approximately half as wrong as when the sexual predator’s target  is her (or his)  student rather than someone she glops mashed potatoes for in the lunch line. True, every employee in a school has to be worthy of some level of trust, but a teacher is blatantly misusing her authority and blurring roles to the detriment of education as well as social development when she exploits the position of teacher/role model/ authority figure/mentor for the purposes of sexual gratification. A lunch lady is just picking up horny teens. One is a professional breach and a sleazy crime. The other is a sleazy crime, and nothing more.

On the other hand, the role betrayal involved when a friend’s mother seduces her son’s underage friend is every bit as reprehensible as the acts of a predator teacher. I tend to think the Sexual Predator Lunch Lady is not a serious threat in our schools.

And where does “The Summer of ’42” land along this spectrum?

I ‘m not certain, but closer to the lunch lady than to the teacher, I think.


Pointer: Fark

Facts: Boston.com


Filed under Education, Gender and Sex, Law & Law Enforcement, Professions, Romance and Relationships

Ethics Alarms Presents …The Kaboom! The First Recipient: Fun Mom Judy Viger


With this post, I am introducing the Kaboom!, a special category reserved for cases that should require no ethics commentary from me, since the ethical breach is beyond obvious, but where the individual’s ethics alarms have proven so spectacularly useless that attention must be paid.

The name of the award derives from the sound my head made as I read the story, because I don’t know how to spell the sound my brains made when they hit hit the ceiling and then slowly fell to the floor.

The first Kaboom! goes to the most deserving Judy Viger, 33, of Gansevoort, New York. Viger is taking a plea deal after being charged with five counts of endangering the welfare of a child. Just for fun, let me tell this story in stages, and let me know when you hear the Kaboom!

1.Police arrested Viger for after she arranged to have two strippers perform at her son’s 16th birthday party in November.

2. Some of the party-goers were 14.

3. The two women performed lap dances for the male teenaged guests, and the birthday boy, of course.

4. Viger did nothing to stop it.

5. One teenaged boy sustained a bitten nipple.

6. Viger then posted pictures of the proceedings on Facebook.

How did you do?

My head went off at #1.


Pointer: ABA Journal

Facts: Post Star


Filed under Family, Gender and Sex, Kaboom!, Law & Law Enforcement, The Internet

No, Mary, A Cure For Down Syndrome Isn’t Wrong, But Infecting Readers With Your Warped Ethical Reasoning Is

Let me know when Mary's gone and it safe to take my boot off.

Let me know when Mary’s gone and it’s safe to take the boot off.

The internet can carry the contagion of horrible reasoning with astounding speed, especially since so many of us have been slow to accept that being published no longer creates any likelihood that a writer has a coherent thought worth reading. Even knowing this, I was still taken aback by the startling ethics illiteracy on display in blogger Mary Fischer’s post  titled “Possible ‘Cure’ for Down Syndrome Seems So Wrong.” This is the kind of undisciplined, emotion-driven, bias and rationalization besotted thinking about life issues that Ethics Alarms was launched to combat, and yet reading Fischer’s sloppy substitute for thought, I still found myself wondering: How does someone get this way? How do they function in life if their method of determining right from wrong reaches conclusions like this? How many people read posts so devoid of anything resembling legitimate ethical analysis and  allow it to become part of their belief system?

I’m not even sure that I want to know the answers to these questions. Continue reading


Filed under Bioethics, Family, Health and Medicine, Research and Scholarship, Science & Technology, The Internet, Unethical Blog Post

No Excuses For The Worst Mother In The World

No graphic appropriate for this story would be appropriate for publication.

No graphic appropriate for this story would be appropriate for publication.

In Jackson, Michigan, a mother is being held without bond on two counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, a felony punishable by up to life in prison. Her alleged crime? She assisted her husband in sexually molesting their three-year-old daughter, and has apparently admitted it. She said she had to hold her daughter’s hands so “it wouldn’t hurt that much,” according to a Department of Human Services petition seeking to terminate her parental rights. If you dare, you can read the whole, terrible story, at least what we know of it now, here.

I know that she will have a defense attorney, as she should, and probably battered woman advocates, abused women specialists, psychiatrists and Gloria Allred will plead for understanding and compassion for her, as a victim, not a criminal. They will explain that the mother was in fear for her own life, and that her mind and priorities were so warped from years of psychological abuse that she felt she had no choice but to choose the sick compulsion of her husband over the safety of her helpless daughter.

I don’t care. Continue reading


Filed under Family, Gender and Sex, Law & Law Enforcement, U.S. Society

Actor Patrick Stewart (“Captain Picard”) Is A Father’s Day Ethics Hero

The video is self-explanatory.


Pointer: Alexander Cheezem





Filed under Character, Ethics Heroes, Family, Gender and Sex, Health and Medicine, Law & Law Enforcement, Popular Culture

Forget Gosnell: This Case Highlights The Real Abortion Issues

John Andrew Weldon, and the mother of his baby, and her property.

John Andrew Weldon, and the mother of his baby, and her property.

John Andrew Welden is being held on first degree murder charges for tricking his girlfriend, pregnant with his child, into taking an abortion bill ( Cyotec, a drug used to induce labor) that she thought was an antibiotic, because he had tampered with the label. The fetus, nearly seven weeks old, miscarried as a result. You can read this ugly story here.

She wanted to have the baby, he didn’t. He arranged his own abortion, deceiving her, betraying her, mistreating her terribly. But how did he commit murder? What he tricked her into aborting wasn’t a human being. NARAL says so. Sandra Fluck says so. President Obama says so.

The ethical and logical problem with our abortion laws, as well as the rhetoric and conduct surrounding them, is that they lack integrity and embarrassingly so. A seven week fetus is not treated as a human life if a mother chooses to have an abortion, and a doctor performs it. This must mean, in any sane, fair and ethical system, that it is not a human life. If it is not a life if a doctor aborts it, it isn’t a life if a boyfriend tricks the mother into aborting it. How can it be? The fetus hasn’t changed, and the conduct hasn’t changed. All that has changed is the agent, and there are only a few ways that can alter the act. “A deceptive killing?” A killing without authority,” perhaps. But the agent can’t make eliminating something first degree murder, if it wasn’t a human being that was eliminated. Continue reading


Filed under Bioethics, Gender and Sex, History, Law & Law Enforcement, War and the Military

Mom Ethics and Kobe Bryant’s Plight

Ah, how many of you must identify with Kobe Bryant today!

Did Mom throw them out?

Did Mom throw them out?

He is enmeshed in an ugly family dispute, suing his own mother in response to an unethical wound that mothers have casually inflicted on their children for centuries.

The superstar Los Angeles Lakers guard’s lawyers argued in a court filing that Bryant never gave his mother permission to sell his memorabilia from his high school days and early professional basketball career, in an attempt to block the auctioning off of jerseys, balls, trophies, championship rings and more for his mother’s profit. His mother, Pamela Bryant, says that she has the right to sell the stuff, because the NBA star told her the memorabilia was hers. She has already received a received a $450,000 advance to have Berlin, N.J.-based Goldin Auctions sell it all for top dollar. Continue reading


Filed under Family, Law & Law Enforcement, Sports

A New Low, Until The Next One

The horrible mother with her son, who does not have cancer. There does seem to be something amiss with his face, though...

The evil  mother with her son, who does not have cancer. There does seem to be something amiss with his face, though…

I thought the woman who tricked her lesbian crush into marrying her by faking an illness and pretending to be her own doctor in e-mails to her romantic target was about as low as a human being could stoop. Before that, it was the various compassion thieves whose scams have been discussed here. In the category of despicable mothers, I thought ground zero was reached by Torry Hanson, who decided that her adopted Russian son was just too much trouble, so she bought him a one way plane ticket to Russia and shipped him back all by himself, with a note renouncing her parenthood. But then I learned about Wanetta Gibson, and I think I have abandoned the quest for the absolute worst ethical behavior, useful as it would be for establishing a scale for ethical misconduct. Human ingenuity regarding the despicable is just too vast.

Nevertheless, Susan Stillwaggon allegedly pulled a scam that could only be devised by someone whose ethics alarms are not only inoperable, but work in reverse, warning her to stop and change course when she is about to do something good.

In order to pull off a fake illness scam, the New Jersey mother told her family, friends and community that her elementary school age son had cancer. And just so he wouldn’t blow a sweet deal—you know how kids are— she told him he had cancer too.

I’m sure I will eventually hear about something more unethical and heartless than this. I’m not looking forward to it.


Facts: CBS (Philly)

Graphic: The Coming Crisis


Filed under Character, Family, Health and Medicine, Law & Law Enforcement