Center for Ethics
Politics, Ethics & Citizenship
In November 2008, voters in the United States will select our 44th President, 111th Congress, 11 new state governors, and thousands of state and local elected leaders. Much is at stake. Undoubtedly, electoral outcomes will have international relations and foreign policy ramifications.The war on terror, the war in Iraq, crises in the Middle East, global warming, international trade—each of these critical issues will be shaped by our electoral choices.Domestically, issues such as gay marriage, immigration, economic and employment growth, health care, privacy and civil liberties concerns, civil rights, and barriers to political equality, are no less pressing. These issues are interrelated and complex, heightening the responsibility of individual citizens to become informed, to listen to others' points of view, to debate, and, ultimately, to make a choice by exercising their right to vote. No less important, the 2008 elections raises important questions on what matters, or should matter, most to our electoral choices, including race, class, religion, gender, sexual identity, age, political party, and ideology.
Indeed, the 2008 election raises innumerable questions of political and ethical significance, stretching far beyond election day. How should we balance the interests of the US with global understandings about military and economic interventions, human rights, and environmental responsibility? What are the boundaries of the rights and privileges of US citizenship; should these be extended to immigrants, the undocumented, to gay couples? Do the rights of citizenship include access to health care, fair wages, and equal education? What is our responsibility, as a nation and as individuals, to respond to scientific and technological advances? To what extent should religion, and the religious views of our leaders, influence public policy and culture? This series offers the community a forum for thinking about and reflecting on the social, political, ethical, economic, and cultural issues in light of the broader issues surrounding the 2008 elections.
Questions about the Program?
Judy Ridner, Director of the Center (firstname.lastname@example.org)