The recent attention given to bioethics in numerous articles and letters to the editor has presented a compelling discussion of decision-making in the next century. Two contributors of letters, Arthur W. Galston [The Scientist, May 13, 1996, page 12] and Brian Everill [The Scientist, Sept. 2, 1996, page 12], have probed the heart of the issue; however, at times they seem caught up in disrespecting each other's credibility. Claims of psuedoquotations and skepticism about each other's definition of moral dilemma have bogged the discussion down in a competition of intellectual prowess.

The heart of the matter is the difference between drawing on a broad base of ethical and philosophical insight as opposed to relying on your own intuition and experience when resolving an ethical dilemma. Everill does not seem to think that a thorough study of ethics will aid in making a decision about...

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