My Body, My Right

Bodily integrity is a very important issue to cover. In order to live happy and live fulfilled life, bodily integrity needs to be protected and supported. In cases such as abortion, sex work, and euthanasia, we must stand together and support these issues. Abortion gives women the choice of deciding what will be inside their own bodies and decide if they are willing to commit to creating and bringing life into the world. Like abortion, prostitution should be supported as well. It gives individuals control over their body and not allow others to judge and determine what is right for them. It gives people the freedom to express themselves however they wish. Euthanasia needs to be supported as well because it offers individuals the power over their life. It gives people power and rights over our their own body. For patients who have terminal illnesses, they are given the chance to determine how much more pain they will experience and when they have had enough. All these issue involve bodily integrity and their right to do what is best for them. In the following paragraph, I will argue that in order to protect bodily integrity, we must support abortion, prostitution, and euthanasia.

Having demonstrated the importance of maintaining bodily integrity, in order for it to be successful, all women should have abortion as an option in their lives. Creating and carrying a life for nine months can affect a woman physically, mentally, and emotionally. Forcing a woman to have a child and not giving her an option to refuse can be harmful for herself and even for the community that she lives in. It is unethical to force a woman to lend her body to another human being without her consent. Judith Jarvis Thomas, a professor emeritus of philosophy at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, explains how a woman, out of kindness, can allow a fetus to use her body to live; however, she is not obligated.[1] In cases such as rape, where a woman is force to have sexual relations and gets pregnant, she has the right to terminate the pregnancy. Even in cases where a woman decides to have consensual intercourse and gets pregnant, she should still have the right of whether going through with the pregnancy or not. Some individuals and religious groups believe that abortion is wrong. For instance, their point of view is that once the egg has been fertilized the baby immediately starts developing.[2] Therefore, abortion takes the life of an innocent child. Yet, these individuals are not taking into account the sacrifices, physical and emotional changes women experience while having a child. It is much more than just carrying a developing child around for nine months; it is a permanent change and a commitment that one is making. It is a woman’s choice of whether she would go through with it or not. This decision should not be forced, but rather be given as an option.  In order to protect bodily integrity, abortion is essential. It gives women the right to decide what they would like to do with their own body. Therefore, sex work should be a choice as well in order to maintain bodily integrity.

Build on the same principle of bodily integrity, we must also support sex work as a regulated legal business. Many people see sex work as degradation of one’s body, treating it as a piece of meat, and/or a play toy. However, having prostitution as a regulated business is important in order to protect bodily integrity. First, it allows individual to have the right over their body. If one wishes to trade sexual favors for something of value, it is completely up to that individual to do so. It is a service that is being traded, not one’s body. Lars O. Ericsson, a teacher at the Filosofika Institution, explains that the sex workers do not sell themselves. He further explains that the booker is not for sell but his or her services are. Many people may argue that prostitution treats human beings as sexual objects. Yet, Ericsson explains that the person who is paying for the sex worker is not interested in his/her as a person but is instead interested in the sexual performance. “[However, since when does the fact that we, when visiting a professional, are not interested in him or her as a person, but only in his or her professional performance, constitute a ground for saying that the professional is dehumanized, turned into an object?”[3] In addition, regulating prostitution offers protection for the people in the business. In order maintain body integrity, individuals should have the right to do whatever they like with their bodies and have protection for it. For instance, sex workers should receive “full protection of all existing laws, regardless of the context and without discrimination. There include all law relating to harassment, violence, threats, intimidation, health and safely and theft.”[4] This way, it offers sex workers to continue their business without fear of harm. Overall, prostitution should be supported as a legal business because it helps maintain bodily integrity.

In order to enact bodily integrity, abortion and prostitution must be supported, and it follows that people should be given the option to use euthanasia. Individuals should be in control over their own bodies and decide what is best for them. The use of euthanasia for patients who have terminal illness can be seen as a way for them to decide when their bodies have had enough. Some people argue, however, that it is unethical. For example, J. Gay-Williams explains that euthanasia violates the nature and dignity of human beings.[5] He believes that taking a life away on propose is going against human nature, and it is cruel. Yet, Williams is not taking into account how cruel it could be to force a human being to live in pain and not give them the option to do whatever they like with their body even if it means death. To protect bodily integrity, euthanasia should be an option for dying individuals. It is up to the person to decide if they wish to continue with medication, which in the long run will do no effect, or decide if euthanasia is the best option for them. For example, shown in a YouTube video, Roger Sagner is given the option to use euthanasia. In the video, one is able to see that he was given the option of choosing to end his own life. Ohio, being one of the few states that allow assisted suicide, allowed Sagner to make that decision. In the video, the audience is able to see how much pain Sagner was experiencing. He begged for it. However, before he passed away, he explained how grateful he was for being given the option to use euthanasia and allow him, “to solve [his] own problems.”[6] Euthanasia, prostitution and abortion should be supported to protect bodily integrity because it gives individuals power over their own body.

Bodily integrity needs to be protected and supported. Issues such as abortion, sex work and euthanasia are important issues to support. First, abortion gives women control over their own body by giving them the choice of terminating or continuing a pregnancy. It is a life changing experience that would affect them physically, mentally, and emotionally. Second, supporting prostitution, it gives individuals the freedom to do what they would like with their own body and not be judge for it. Lastly, euthanasia gives patients who have terminal illness a chance to decide when their bodies have had enough and when it is the time to end it all. When is comes to bodily integrity, one need to take a stand and give individuals the opportunity to make their own decision about their bodies.


[1] Thomas, Judith Jarvis. “A Defense of Abortion.” Princeton University Press, 1971.

[2]  Christian Net. “Pro-Life Arguments Against Abortion.” accessed May 27, 2013. http://www.christianet.com/abortionfacts/prolifeargumentsagainstabortion.htm.

[3]Ericsson, Lars O. “Charges Against Prostitution: An Attempt at a Philosophical Assessment.” University Chicago Press, 1980.

[4] IUSW. “International Union of Sex Workers.” accessed May 27, 2013. http://www.iusw.org/

[5] Gay-WIlliams, J. “The Wrongfulness of Euthanasia.” Intervention and Reflection: Basic Issues in Medical Ethics, 7th Edition. Ronald Munson: CA, 1979.

[6] Youtube. “Rodger Sager in Oregon, USA Assisted Suicide.” accessed May 27, 2013.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rXZFK762ung&feature=player_embedded

The Right to One’s Life/Death

The Right to One's Life/Death

Euthanasia is a sensitive topic to talk about because many people are not open to the idea of a person wanting to die. How can they “want” to die? Right? When I was first informed about euthanasia, I didn’t agree with its purpose: ending the life of a human being. However, as I matured, I keep an open mind to a person’s right to his or her own body. This can be either having plastic surgery, tattoos, piercings, or even having the right to have an abortion or ends one’s life. People would argue that these examples don’t relate to one another because getting a tattoo is way different than ending’s one life. Right? Well, lets think this through.

In one of this week’s reading, “The Wrongfulness of Euthanasia” by J. Gay William, he explains how euthanasia is wrong because it violates nature and dignity of human beings. First, I would like to say that I don’t agree with his argument. He states that euthanasia goes against nature. William believes that assisting a patient in ending his or her life is going against nature, but helping the patient cheat life is not? He encourages treatment and argues how dying from treatment is completely different than euthanasia because its intension was not to end the patient’s life. However, in both situations, one is going against nature. So, why is one permissible but not the other? If one is allowable, than the other one should be as well. Moreover, euthanasia violates dignity of human beings. This is subjective. One may believe that watching a human being die and knowing that nothing else can be done violates dignity of human beings. This can go either way. However, I do not agree that one side of the argument is greater than the other which is what William is doing. One should have the right to one’s body, and if euthanasia is the solution to one’s needs than we should be given that right.

Is it all worth it in the end?

Everyday, as one gets ready for school or work, we are forced to take decisions. These decisions can be minor ones such as, “What shoes should I wear today?” However, with every action we take, there are “consequences” that come right after. This can be either good or bad. It all depends on how we interpret it. However, most of the time when we make these decisions, we don’t always get a clear answer of whether what we are doing is right or wrong. For instance, I’ve have worked in sales for the past two years. It’s my job and responsibility to make sure my company hits its quota everyday. Otherwise, it doesn’t make enough revenue to substance itself and won’t have any other choice than to let people go. Therefore, I will lose my job.

 

In Thinking Critically About Ethical Issues, chapter ten, it discusses how we are constantly deciding whether our outcomes from our actions are worth some of the necessary “evil” that we are causing. I was able to relate this to my job. As a sales person, it is my duty to persuade you to believe that the product my company is selling is essential and will offer many benefits. However, when I first started, it was difficult for me. In most cases, people didn’t have the money for the product. On the other hand, it was my duty to make them believe that they were making an investment for themselves. Reason being, it would offer them a convenience that would overweigh the cost. So, this brings me back to what I mentioned earlier: every action that we take has it’s own consequence. It all depends on how we interpret it. It can be considered good or bad. Therefore, it’s our duty to decide whether the actions we are taking overweigh the evil that we are causing. We have to ask ourselves, “is it all worth it in the end?”Image

“What would you do?”

What would you do if a friend or family member were in great need of food, shelter, and/or clothing? Would you be willing to help? To many people, the answer to that question would be yes. However, would you give the same aid that you would give to a friend or family member to a complete stranger? In this week’s reading, it makes us question if we would go out of our way to help complete strangers such as ruining our wardrobe to save a person from drowning. However, the examples that it uses are pretty much “no brianers”. You would have to be a pretty disturbed person to prefer preserving your clothing than to save another human’s life. However, it made me question events that are more likely to occur in our daily life. Such as, “what would you do if you find a stranger laying on the ground helpless?” Would you help them? Again, I believe many people would say yes. However, shown in “What would you do?” video, many people would actually pass by the stranger without giving him/her a second look. In the video, it shows three incidents: a businesswomen laying in the sidewalk, a homeless man, and the same homeless man with a beer can in his hand. It was amazing to see how people can easily over look a person who may be in need.
In the first incident, it showed a businesswoman clasping in the middle of the sidewalk. It took a total of 6 seconds for someone to respond. Yet, with the homeless man, it took 3 minutes before someone stopped and helped him. In the third and final incident, the same homeless man clasped in the middle of the sidewalk but with a beer can. This time, nobody stopped. It took another homeless person to help him. It was depressing to see how many people assume that the homeless man was drunk. People passed by, not even checking if he was alive. Instead of asking, “would you help a person from drowning,” one should ask, “would you check if that person laying in the middle of the sidewalk is still alive?”

Sex…

Sex. It is a clever tactic to use in advertisement to grab people’s attention. I remember back in 2005, Carl’s Jr. had enough courage to post one of their first racy commercials. It created a “stir when it aired a … commercial featuring the scantily clad Hilton washing a Bentley and chowing down on the restaurant’s massive Spicy BBQ Six Dollar Burger, reported only a 1.7 percent increase in same-store sales for the most recent four-week period, below analyst expectations (ABC News). Most people’s first impression was, “did they really just to that?” I was quite impressed how far Carl’s Jr. was willing to go to get their brand out and raise their sales.

I remember many people at school could not stop themselves from commenting on the commercial. They either loved it or hated it (many more people loved it though). I gave Carl’s Jr. props. They took a person who was highly recognized and took it to the next level. Can I blame? No, it is really quite clever.

It just makes me wonder how far companies are willing to go to get attention. Is it up to us to inform businesses when their ads get too out of hand? For instance, Dolce & Gabbana’s gang rape ad is pretty intense. I am not quite sure what they are trying to do there. Maybe tap into a sex fantasy that many people have but are not aware of it or are too embarrassed say out loud? Whatever it is, it is getting attention. However, when do we let them know that it is too much? I know companies such as Trojan are not embarrassed to advertise their products. I remember a couple of years ago, Trojan was more “hush hush” but now you can see and hear about their products through television and radio. Do you think we should do anything to stop this? Or, allow them to use their freedom of speech?

http://abcnews.go.com/Business/story?id=893867&page=1#.UXYjS46RPww

Diversity in School…

Now that we’ve had the opportunity to discuss about this topic, it made me realize how schools pride themselves of diversity and fairness. For example, I remember a conversation my friend and I had a couple of weeks ago about diversity in our schools. We both discuss our first weeks as freshman in our schools, and it’s interesting to find out how different our experiences were. Here is some basic information. My friend is currently attending one of the Claremont Colleges (a few minutes away from University of La Verne) and is on her third year. We are both Hispanic and come from a similar background. However, she explained how difficult it was for her to adjust to her school. She further explained how it was a challenge to find people with similar interest. I, on the other hand, had no problem adjusting to La Verne. How can that be? Both of our schools promote diversity, so wouldn’t we have similar experience? The answer began to get clear to me as we continued our conversation. She explained how, yes, there are people from different cultures attending her school but majority of the students come from a wealthy background. She mentioned how students with wealthy parents were more likely to hang out with people within the same social class. The group of people who she associates with come from a low-income family, although they come from differently cultures, they have more things in common than with those with wealthy parents.  She said that it took her time to find people she felt comfortable with.

This made me think about La Verne. Is it really diverse? I’m not sure if I’m being bias, but I believe that it has a good mixture of people from different cultures and income. What do you think? Should colleges make a “quota” of having diversity in race and income to make things fair?

Fifty Shades of Pleasure

The topic of porn is a difficult subject to discuss. First and foremost, one needs to decide if it is considered good or bad. Coming from a woman’s point of view, it can be subjective.  In one of our readings, it explains how pornography oppresses women and makes them into sexual toys. However, who is the one who makes that decision? Yes, I believe taking advantage of a woman and having intercourse against her will is wrong. But, would it still be wrong if a woman willingly agrees? For instance, there are relationships where women agree to be a person’s “sex slave”. If she finds pleasure from it, would it be wrong? In most cases, this behavior of a woman subjecting to a male in excessive acts would be considered curl, lewd, and unusual. Another example is the book, Fifty Shades of Grey. It is about a young female college student who decides to get into an S&M relationship with an older male.  As a result, this book has become very popular amongst women all over the world. So, what are women taking out of it? Well, what has been demonstrated through the popularity of this book, women, to some extend, like the idea of being dominated and finding satisfaction in being in a relationship where the male takes control. However, there have been different opinions about this: either you love it or hate it. What I find interesting, people have categorized this as pornography. Reason being, the majority of this story involves the female character participating in sexual activities. Furthermore, this is a perfect example of a woman displaying herself in a subjective manner. She is consciously agreeing to be in a position that would be considered inappropriate behavior to society. Therefore, women subjecting themselves to obscured behavior: that would be considered wrong by society, if she decides otherwise. fifty-shades-of-grey-cac1d39d5bb5c20810b1314bcbf61dee35d8219b-s6-c10