February 23, 2024

Modern marriage in Nebraska. Hate and public health.

With hate crimes like the recent murders of 50 Muslims in Christchurch, New Zealand, by a white nationalist, some bioethicists are asking whether bigotry is a disease. And, if so, whether it can be prevented (or cured) with the tools in the armoury of public health professionals. In an article below, public health experts suggest four ways that doctors can push back against hatred. 

It's an interesting line of thought. Clearly some forms of bigotry and hatred lead to deadly crimes. But defining hatred is often deeply political. The members of  the KKK and ISIS are clearly dangerous “haters”. But how about foes of Muslim immigration or same-sex marriage? Are they “haters” or just political opponents? I must confess that I feel that the bioethics of hatred is off to a shaky start, conceptually. But I believe that it will become more prominent as time goes on. The Christchurch gunman let a genie out of the bottle.

Michael Cook
A 61-year-old woman gives birth to her grandchild