The Analysis Of The Excerpt From The Aaron Ridley’S Book “Ill-Gotten Gains: On The Use Of Results From Unethical Experiments In Medicine,”: [Essay Example], 655 words GradesFixer

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The Analysis of the Excerpt from the Aaron Ridley’s Book "Ill-gotten Gains: on the Use of Results from Unethical Experiments in Medicine,"

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The short excerpt from Aaron Ridley’s “Ill-Gotten Gains: On the Use of Results from Unethical Experiments in Medicine,” presents an argument for why making use of unethical research data is not inappropriate on the grounds that it condones the researcher’s immoral actions. He asserts this position by claiming that condoning unethical behaviour involves more than simply benefiting from the unethical person’s work (Ridley).

Ridley supports this claim by providing a hypothetical situation where a murderer drains the blood of his victim into a bucket, and a secondary person finds this bucket, knowing exactly what this bucket contains and how it got to be there. Then suddenly, this secondary person is circled by flames, and pours the bucket of blood onto the fire, as it was the only weapon around, to save himself from burning (Ridley).

Ridley states that it would be wrong to say that this secondary person accepts the methods in which this blood came to be, by using it to his advantage to save himself. Nothing in this secondary person’s behaviour leads to the assumption that he accepts the actions the murderer took to fill this bucket (Ridley).This principle for condoning the use of unethically discovered research is flawed because the use of the research does not reflect/speak on the beliefs of those using the research, and further proof is required (Ridley).

Who is to say that by engaging with one’s unethicality implies you agree with their methods. An alternative principle to demonstrate such a claim would be one that involves the replication of the unethical methods of the research. For example, solely using the information found, like implementing the results of unethical research to further your own work, would be just. However, replicating the style of obtaining the results, rather than applying the results, would seem accepting of the unethical behaviour.

The condition of this new principle is clear if applied to cases similar to the Vipeholm experiment. The Vipeholm experiment was conducted in Sweden between 1945 and 1954, where subjects were fed excessive amounts of sugar in order to find a correlation between sugar intake and the formation of dental caries (Krasse 1785). From a scientific standpoint, the study was successful in finding enough empirical evidence to prove a link between sugar and tooth decay, and the results have been widely used to benefit the greater population (Krasse 1787). However, forcing subjects to consume foods for the purpose of developing dental caries is unethical because of the harm it caused to the subjects.

Now, by using the research from this study, like many have, we can put in practice that it is unhealthy to consume copious amounts of sugar, as it can cause teeth to decay, as well as cavities. It is not apparent whatsoever that by making this statement we condone the behaviour of researchers involved in the Vipeholm experiment. We are simply taking this valuable information to apply elsewhere in the medical field, such as creating a children’s nutrition plan with a limited sugar intake, to avoid a future of dental troubles. Having said that, if we were instead to replicate the ways in which the study was conducted, where subjects were forced to ingest harmful substances to provoke disease, then that would be making use of unethical research and condoning its unethicality.

By replicating the methods of unethical work, we would be condoning the methods by which it was obtained. Essentially, there is nothing morally wrong if we were to use unethically founded data, as the issue is really how the data came to into existence. However, if we were to copy that procedure, then we too are being unethical, and are making allowances for their immoral and unacceptable behaviour.Ridley believes that merely taking advantage of another person’s work is not enough to appear as condoning it, which is why replicating the person’s work is obviously doing more than benefiting from it, but rather it is creating another unethical research situation.

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The Analysis Of The Excerpt From The Aaron Ridley’S Book “Ill-Gotten Gains: On The Use Of Results From Unethical Experiments In Medicine,”. (2020, February 27). GradesFixer. Retrieved November 28, 2020, from
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