Ethics Slam             Ethics Bowl             Case Writing Competition        

2012 Slam Questions

1. Are zoos unethical? 

2. Should flu shots be mandatory? 

3. Are public charter school admission lotteries unfair?

4. Is happiness the highest good? 

5. Should college athletes with no financial need receive scholarships? 

6. If a college names a building after a former CEO who is convicted of a serious felony and goes to prison, should the building be renamed? 

7. Can our feelings be our sole guide to morality? 

8. What are the ethical questions involved when a company is the only supplier of a high risk life-saving product? 

9. This question has to do with the recent news about the bird flu research where scientific journals have been called on to restrict details of the reports for bioesecurity reasons: How should we ethically handle dual-use research where merely knowing something can be risky and harmful, but this same information can be beneficial for reducing other risks? 

10. Is it right to base the punishment of adolescents for crimes on the findings of neuroscience, such as the use of brain scanes demonstrating their brains are less mature? Do we have a responsibility to use the findings of neuroscience to reform punishments? 

11. What are the ethical issues when we consider wheelchairs as part of a person's body? 

12. Is morality dependent on religion? 

13. How should education deal with minors who 'sext'? 

14. What are some of the ethical issues when a fair trade company buys raw materials for its products that are then harvested by child labor? 

15. Should we be prevented from having more than one identity other than our legal identity when we go online? 

16. I see that the slam is at a pub. Here is my question: What are some of the ethical issues involved with beer, including the way it is made? 

17. How should the public be informed and consulted in preparing for the ethical issues of a pandemic? What are the main ethical issues?

18. What is the ethical impact of corporations being regarded as people? 

19. Is bullshit harmful to society?

20. Does the locavore movement really offer an ethical alternative to other models for growing, distributing and buying our food? 

21. Should chimpanzees be used in research? 

22. Is it ethical for a teacher to be friends with a student on Facebook? 

23. Suppose you are working for a public relations firm that has been hired to deal with a former coach charged with sexual abuse of children. What are some of the ethical issues that you face? 

24. Is teen depression screening in schools unethical? 

25. Should home-schooling parents be required to have a degree or training? 

26. Describe the ethics of a military that is planning to use robots rather than humans in battle. 

27. Should we ban nonprofits whose mission is to sponsor children in developing countries on the grounds that such programs are unethical? 

28. What are the ethical benefits and harms of mandatory voting? 

29. Do incentives or "nudges" built into government or corporate programs, say for example, a "nudge" requiring people to opt out of savings programs at their jobs, pose any ethical challenges? 

30. If I am sitting in a bar and overhear three people sitting next to me go on a loud homophobic riff, should I say someting to them? 

31. I am desperate to find a job. Every prospective employer tells me I am overqualified. Should fail to include my doctorate in my applications, given that applications include a sentence requiring me to attest to the truthfulness of the information I have supplied? 

32. Is there an ethical difference between being immoral and amoral? 

33. Describe someone who is an ethical saint. 

34. What is an act in business that you regard as one that goes above and beyond your obligations as a business?

35. What wrong with political ethics? 

36. How should the media cover the ethics of direct to consumer genetic testing?

37. Should police officers who lie be terminated?

38.  What should we owe our returning veterans?

39. I am trying to figure out whether there is one character trait that is the most ethical. Is there one? 

40. If I don't eat fast food, is it morally alright to give the homeless man I pass every day food that I would never eat? 

41. Does buying "green" make me a better person? 

42. Do we have duties toward the suicidal? 

43. Can you give some examples of someone who has acted with dignity? 

44. Why is transparency an ethical issue? 

45. I am a student. If I am really talented in math, do I have an obligation to go into the field because my country needs mathematicians?