apology

Glenn White au44 at CLASS.ORG
Tue Aug 30 21:24:01 EST 1994


On Tue, 30 Aug 1994, eric c. anderson wrote:

> i would like to apologize for getting off on a tangent with my reply to
> Adriana's post ("this is a scientific network").
> 
> i would appreciate it if the personal flames would cease.  i know that the
> forum was somewhat inappropriate, but as it was a reply, a cross-post would
> have been confusing.  also, by the gist of the letters i am receiving in
> reply, many people in the community do not think that ethics has a place in
> a scientific discussion forum.  while i doubt that many people would agree
> with that statement as it is written, some of your replies to me have said
> just that, but not in so many words.
> sorry for wasting the bandwidth, but i never really expected to incite a
> personal flame from leon.
> eric

I personally did not care much for the original post concerning the 
current state of political affairs in China, but I cared even less for 
the high and mighty response to it.  Take a powder and relax, nothing in 
the world is worth getting that upset over.

I also find it extremely disconcerting that, according to Eric's 
post (and I don't know Eric or anybody else in this nasty little affair 
personally), that the number of scientists, including worm docs, who are 
not concerned with ethics is apparently high.  I attended an NSF 
sponsored Ethics Across the Curriculum workshop in Chicago this summer 
where the principal issue was the incorporation of ethical considerations 
into our profession.  Having spent 4 years in a lab where the lack of 
professional ethics and conduct had serious consequences within the lab 
and now, throughout the institution, I would argue that it is extremely 
appropriate for the scientific community, in all subgroups, to consider 
issues relating to the consequences of their actions.  Obviously, when 
working with C. elegans the issues aren't life and death (not usually 
anyway, except when somebody needs a job), and I don't advocate using 
this mailing list to spend all of our time discussing conduct, but to not 
allow any is a serious mistake, in my opinion.

I am teaching a cell bio course this fall in which we will discuss 
ethical issues in the conduct of science and scientific research.   
Thanks to all for giving me a new case to present to my students.  I'll 
change the names to protect the innocent.

Send me a nasty message if you like, I'll be happy to bite your head 
off right back.  I'm pretty good at stuff like that.

Cheers,

Glenn

Department of Biology
Ashland University
Ashland, Ohio  44805
au44 at class.org








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