Were You Ever Posed With This Type Of Question In School?

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by Eightball, Feb 10, 2005.

  1. Eightball
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    Eightball Senior Member

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    When I was in college back in the late 60's, I took a speaking class as an elective. I was quite stage shy, and didn't know quite what to do if asked to speak before an audience. This class, really made a difference. I realized that my fears were unfounded, and it actually got to be fun, waiting for my chance to do a speech before my class.

    ........... Ok.......Now for the part that seemed not-so-good.

    We had to do 5 mandatory speeches during the semester on different subjects and types of speeches, but once in awhile, our teacher would throw up a chance at a bonus to our grades by asking for a volunteer to speak on a subject that she(the teacher) had presented.

    I vividly remember this question, because I believe I made an "Ass" out of myself by the way I spoke on it.

    Topic to speak on:

    We have this sinking ship out in the middle of the ocean. We have a life-boat that has a certain maximum capacity. We have a certain number of survivor's that need to get in this one life boat, but there is one.....too many people for the life boat's capacity. What shall we do?

    One person was the capitain of the ship, one was an important government currier with vital documents, and the rest I can't remember except for this last one; a pregnant woman.

    So in my new found public speaking courage, I volunteered to give a 10 minute speech on this interesting, ethical(lol) question posed by my totally innocent teacher with no agenda at all(lol).

    I systematically, presented each potential survivor's worth to mankind/society, one by one to my audience of equally gullible(as myself), young, college students.

    I had given a plausible reason for every person's need to survive, but one. I left the pregnant woman last, and explained how she hadn't anything to offer humanity, but over-population. Well, surprisingly, I had most of the class rolling(laughing) in the aisle, including our teacher. I didn't realize at that time what a calloused person I was in this regard, yet I had also revealed the calloused attitude of so many too.

    My whole foundation for life was based on a warped concept of; "For the greater good". It was years later that I realized how absolutely far-off I was. Actually, it co-incided with the birth of my Christian faith.

    Anyway, I was wondering if any of you, or your children were ever exposed to what I believe was a very subtle type of brain-washing via the school system. I heard that the life boat scenario was quite commonly used in schools by some educators(I use "educators" lightly). I heard that this scenario was used on elementary school children as well as college age kids as myself.

    Have any of you heard of this? There must have been other versions posed on kids, with the same intent.

    It's very embarrassing to admit that I could have been this way in my early years, but I'm so thankful that I was able to see it differently later on. My wife and children(three grown sons), I'm sure are thankful. Folks, I was a full-blown, Pro-Abortion college student. I was so blind.
     
  2. Joz
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    Joz Senior Member

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    Brainwashing comes under many guises. Don't be embarrassed at what you were. Be proud at what you've become. It's remarkable what a little maturity and the birth of a child (ren) will do. :)
     
  3. Huckleburry
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    Huckleburry Member

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    I actually agree with your orginal argument. I mean...overpopulation is a problem. I would personally choose the Captain becuase I have sailed from birth and have had the notion of "the captain going down with the ship" drilled into my head and I simply could not ethically cheat him of that honor.
    cheers,
    Huck
     
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  4. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    Might want to do a bit more reading on this subject. http://www.deanesmay.com/archives/007514.html

    Erlich had it wrong, at least for the time being. I have more scholarly info on the topic, Tribune Foundation Conference about Global trends. Don't think it's available online, but if you like I'll type out relevant pop. projections. (I believe University of Chicago demographic studies.)
     
  5. Avatar4321
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    Avatar4321 Diamond Member Gold Supporting Member

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    id like to see who else is on the ship other that the captain and the pregnant woman and id like to know why i was making the choice. it would seem that if i had to choose who left the ship. i would leave. but if it was possible id see if i can find something to stay a float and maybe tie myself to the edge of the ship.
     
  6. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    I've seen and used this scenario often in group therapy situations. The intent was purely for personal insight into priorities and decision making but I'm sure people could use it fo other things.
     
  7. CivilLiberty
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    CivilLiberty Active Member

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    Hmm.. Okay, then, are you saying that everyone get in the boat, so it sinks from being overloaded, and everyone dies?

    Or are you saying that one of the others should lose their life to give way to the pregnant woman, (who could miscarry or die due to the harsh survival environment)?

    Or are you saying that you're not willing to make that decision at all?

    Not knowing who the others were, it's hard to judge further.


    A
     
  8. CivilLiberty
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    CivilLiberty Active Member

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    In frigid atlantic waters you wouldn't survive long.

    There was a movie along these lines some years back, based on a true story. As I recall, the captain kicked the old folks overboard, basing his decision on best chance of survival for the group.


    A
     
  9. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    The death scenario is just to get you to think harder about your priorities--fortunately the chance of this scenario occuring are incalculable. Other scenarios are more likely to occur in life yield better discussion.
     
  10. Said1
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    Said1 VIP Member

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