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Author Archive: Neil Skjoldal

About Neil Skjoldal

02/04/2019 Gender & Pain
By Neil Skjoldal Last week, The Washington Post  published a summary of a recent article in the Journal of Pediatric Psychology entitled “Gender Bias in Pediatric Pain Assessment.” The participants of the study were shown a video with a child described as a girl or boy enduring pain.  The authors  “then asked adults to rate how much pain …

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01/07/2019 Facebook & Ethics
Most of us probably know that Facebook keeps track of its users.  Its programmers have created algorithms that can guess our preferences in all sorts of areas, even in politics.  Most of us probably also know that Facebook has come under scrutiny for its actions (or non-actions) during the previous election cycle. Its founder, Mark Zuckerberg, has made …

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By Neil Skjoldal With the death of President George H. W. Bush this past weekend, the country seems united in eulogizing him for, among other things,  having lived “a well-lived life,” because amidst his accomplishments, he was able to reach 94 years of age.  This brought to mind a recent article published in The NY …

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By Neil Skjoldal I recently had the opportunity to watch the 2018 documentary Three Identical Strangers, which tells the story of triplets Bobby Shafran, Eddy Galland, and David Kellman.  They were separated shortly after birth in the 1960s and adopted by three different families through the Louise Wise adoption agency in New York City.  The …

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BY NEIL SKJOLDAL The New York Times  recently published a lengthy article on Daniel Te’o-Nesheim, a former NFL player who died at age 30 after playing football for half his life. With all the recent information about the dangers of football-related head trauma, it is not surprising to learn that upon his death, Te’o-Nesheim’s family donated …

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08/06/2018 Every Day is a Gift
By Neil Skjoldal Into the genre of news reports about physician assisted suicide comes a powerful piece from The Washington Post.   It is the story of J. J. Hanson who was diagnosed with a glioblastoma multiforme.  It traces his difficult journey as it relates to PAS.  Because of the poor prognosis, treatments at times seemed …

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07/02/2018 Goodbye, Korematsu
Supreme Court watchers always eagerly anticipate the last week of June because that is when the highest court in the land usually reaches decisions in its most controversial cases.  Last week did not disappoint — several of the decisions were reached by the slimmest of majorities (the infamous 5-4 vote). Then, to add to the …

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Last month, I sat through a presentation on the ethics of Physician Assisted Suicide (PAS) in a local hospital.  I attended the presentation, not because I am unfamiliar with the arguments on the subject and ambivalent about my feelings on it, but because I wanted to observe how it was presented, what the reaction of the audience was to the presentation, and how it might... // Read More »

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For the past several years, it has been my privilege to attend the annual conference of the Florida Bioethics Network.  As in prior years, this year’s conference showed the great range of topics that fall under the umbrella of bioethics.   Topics included the so-called “Tattoo DNR,” a discussion of medical marijuana, the potential promise of an electronic and interactive informed consent document, and even a discussion of... // Read More »

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04/02/2018 The Child I Want
I appreciate the honesty of Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus. Watching various states attempt to enact more and more restrictions on abortion, she wrote of her strong personal feelings regarding the importance of keeping abortion legal. The headline certainly grabs our attention: “I would’ve aborted a fetus with Down syndrome. Women need that right.” Noting how cute the new “Gerber Baby” is, Marcus reminds her... // Read More »

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