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Ethics

Stethoscope on a doctor's neck
Winter 2017

Ethics and effectiveness in medicine

“Can you be an effective physician without also being an ethical physician?” That’s the question students in the inaugural class of the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine at Washington State University faced for the first time on day two of classes. They’ll revisit it regularly as they make their way towards the MD degree and entry into a profession that has, many bioethicists and physicians believe, an ethic built right into it. To say that there is an ethic internal to medicine is to say that certain kinds of moral responsibilities are built right into what it means to be a part of … » More …

Ethics of Climate change - warming globe
Winter 2012

The Ethics of Climate Change

In 2012 the Thomas S. Foley Institute for Public Policy and Public Service, in conjunction with the School of Politics, Philosophy, and Public Affairs, began a new public symposia series that focuses on the ethical and public policy ramifications of new scientific innovations and knowledge. Each semester the symposia, which are open to the public, bring together WSU faculty with other internationally prominent scholars. The first in the series, “Ethics and Global Climate Change,” was held in April 2012, and brought to WSU’s campus Andrew Light, director of the Center for Global Ethics at George Mason University and a fellow at the Center for American … » More …

Spring 2003

Pailca oversees accountability within Seattle Police Department

A case involving Asian-American teenagers detained by a Seattle police officer for jaywalking sounds routine enough, but the July 2001 incident soon unfolded into highly publicized accusations of racial profiling. The issue landed in the lap of attorney Sandra “Sam” Pailca, the first director of the Office of Professional Accountability (OPA) within the Seattle Police Department.

Pailca found that while the officer was rude to the group, his actions did not amount to inappropriate treatment because of race. The police chief agreed with Pailca’s call for minor discipline for the officer, a decision unpopular both in the Asian community and with many in uniform, leading … » More …

Fall 2005

Thinking about Washington State

Adapted from a talk the author delivered April 2005, upon receiving the Washington State University Eminent Faculty Award.

I am honored, pleased, and humbled by the recognition that has been bestowed upon me. I’d like to take this time to share some thoughts with you.

First I want to tell you about the nature of science. Newton said it best: “If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” What is true for Sir Isaac Newton, one of the greatest physicists of all times, is certainly true for a physicist with significantly fewer accomplishments. The shock wave research effort at … » More …

Fall 2002

"Why do you believe this?"

“I now think twice when I look in the mirror.”

Wes Leid remembers the advice Leo K. Bustad, late dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine, offered him when he was hired at Washington State University 22 years ago. “You may not think you teach ethics, but you teach ethics every day of your life in your interactions with others.”

“You need to explore why you believe what you believe,” Leid says, “and get others to explore issues they had not considered before.”

That is what he does. And, according to students in his University Honors class, “Medical Ethics … » More …