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<   No. 3917   2019-01-29   >

Comic #3917

1 Simon: Bonnie! You have to save those five physicists by sacrificing me! Push the trolley into me!
2 Bonnie: I understand, Simon.
3 Bonnie: You've analysed the ethics of the situation and concluded this is the only ethically defensible outcome.
4 Simon: I was going to say I get to die a hero, but okay, sure.

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Ethics is a tricky topic.

I've mentioned a couple of times in 2017 that I was teaching a Year 4 Ethics class at a local primary school. In 2018 I switched to teaching Year 6, children about 11 years old. The curriculum I teach is set by Primary Ethics, and approved by the New South Wales Board of Education, and I don't get to vary it or make my own class material. I recently completed a topic on drugs in sport, in which I introduced the topic through the planned exercises and discussion questions provided in the curriculum. Initially the children were pretty much all blanket against the idea of using performance-enhancing drugs in sport, but by the end of the topic, several of them were reconsidering their opinions.

It's not as bad as it sounds - the topic raised the point that caffeine is known to be a performance-enhancing drug, yet it is (currently) allowed in athletic and sports competition. (High levels of it were banned from the mid-1980s to 2004, but the ban has been removed.) The students were generally of the opinion that this is okay, since caffeine is in normal foods and drinks that lots of people eat, so banning it is impractical.

But yeah... shades of grey.

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