Your Questions About Morality And Law Uk

Paul asks…

Fertility treatment for cancer patients funded by NHS?

Are procedures like cryopreservation and ICSI funded by the NHS or do the individuals pay for them?
What if they are cancer patients whose fertility may be affected after chemotherapy and radiotherapy? And so, they use these procedures as a precaution?

thank you very much, I appreciate it!

Pip answers:

If your illness needs treatment which is likely to cause infertility in the UK, you can ask for eggs/sperm to be frozen etc for future use, usually paid for on the NHS.
However, the law is constantly changing around the use and rights people have with these methods, unless the specific donor is alive trying to get permission to use a lost partners eggs or sperm is a legal jungle filled with moral considerations which tie you up in knots. The morality versus science issue is rife here…

Betty asks…

Is Birmingham aka ‘BirminGUN’ the UK & European Capital of gun crime 2008?

Inner city Birmingham in the West Midlands is the poorest urban inner city in the UK where gun crime and crime in general, shootings, stabbings, muggings, street robberies, drug dealing and drug taking 2008

Pip answers:

I thought you lot passed a law that got rid of guns?

Guess it worked just as well as the laws passed against shootings, stabbing, muggings, street robberies, drug dealing, and drug taking.

Best of luck legislating morality….it doesn’t seem to work anywhere.

Maybe if you passed a law against breaking a law. Yeah, THAT might do it. Quickly….to the House of Commons…not a moment to lose!!!

Thomas asks…

death penalty in England and USA?

I need to write my opinion but i don’t know much about it. Could anyone tell me anything they know about the death penalty or their opinion about it to help me understand the death penalty.

Pip answers:

I’d address three topics:

1.Is it justified (eg. Eye for an eye, revenge Vs rehabilitation, rights of the victim and their family, risk of miscarriage etc)
2.Is it effective (eg. Is it a deterent, does it make better societies, is it cheaper than permanent incarceration etc)
3.Is it legal (eg. Is it a cruel and unusual punishment, the position of international law, etc)

You’ve probably been asked the US/UK part because we are fairly similar societies with a largely common ancestry
and tradition, but the UK abolished the death penalty whilst much of the US still uses it. You can go two ways on this –
1. The US is a much younger society still in a vigourous development phase facing the challenges of it’s huge size and diversity so frontier justice is still appropriate (similar claims for China by the way, the other big executor). When the UK was trying to hold a huge empire together it executed loads of people too.
2. The existence in the US of a more fundemental christianity gives people a different perspective on life (and death) from the broadly humanist (post christian) views in Europe (including the UK) where morality is more personal and less something learned from religion. Religious Europe was a very bloody place indeed for hundreds of years.

Hope this helps, BTW my opinion is that it is as morally justifiable as war. I really don’t want to have to do it, but sometimes I might have to protect my family and society. Right now I think both our societies could live without capital punishment, and therefore should – but that could change.

Jenny asks…

What do you think about death penalty?

Pip answers:

If killing somebody is the worst crime imaginable, I don’t understand how it follows that the appropriate punishment is for the state to kill the killer.

I don’t believe that it automatically affords ‘closure’ or ‘satisfaction’ to the victim’s loved ones. For that matter, even if it were guaranteed that it did offer such a satisfaction, that that would be sufficient justification for the state to employ the death penalty. Surely the law is in place so that the plain and simple desire for revenge needn’t be the ultimate judge of what should happen to wrong-doers.

I don’t believe that the death penalty acts as a deterrent. Many states in the USA have the death penalty, and the USA has far more violent homicides per capita than, say, the UK, where the death penalty is no longer a punishment. The evidence suggests that nobody is deterred from committing capital offences by having a death penalty in place.

Finally, the US Constitution is fairly clear in its disapproval of ‘cruel and unusual punishment’, and yet no state that operates the death penalty uses a method that is without pain or suffering for the subject. Exactly how being deprived of life is not in itself ‘cruel and unusual punishment’ has yet to be demonstrated, let alone being deprived of life in an agonisingly painful way. How exactly does it follow that because somebody killed someone else in an incredibly painful way, then that person should in turn be killed in an incredibly painful way? How does that grant the state any higher moral credibility than the murderer?

The evidence suggests that the death penalty is nothing but a political football, used by unscrupulous politicians to gain capital from ill-informed voters.

Having said all that – if my loved ones were to be brutally killed, would I want revenge? Sure. If I had the opportunity to slay my loved ones’ killers, would I take it? Maybe. I hope not. But I don’t believe for one second that the state has the right to do it for me. If I did take revenge, I would do so in the full expectation that I would do time for it. And rightly so.

As a deterrent, the death penalty is ineffective. As justice, it’s indefensible. There are not many ways in which we can point to progress in the area of state morality, but the abandonment by most of the world’s governments of the death penalty is one of them. Any state that still allows it to be employed within its borders does not deserve to count itself as a civilised nation.

Carol asks…

Who knows what “Natural Law and Natural Justice” is?

Check out the link, please

Pip answers:

The term “natural law” is ambiguous. It refers to a type of moral theory, as well as to a type of legal theory, but the core claims of the two kinds of theory are logically independent. It does not refer to the laws of nature, the laws that science aims to describe. According to natural law ethical theory, the moral standards that govern human behavior are, in some sense, objectively derived from the nature of human beings. According to natural law legal theory, the authority of at least some legal standards necessarily derives, at least in part, from considerations having to do with the moral merit of those standards. There are a number of different kinds of natural law theories of law, differing from each other with respect to the role that morality plays in determining the authority of legal norms.

Natural justice or procedural fairness is a legal philosophy used in some jurisdictions in the determination of just, or fair, processes in legal proceedings. The concept is very closely related to the principle of natural law (Latin: jus naturale) which has been applied as a philosophical and practical principle in the law in several common law jurisdictions, particularly the UK and Australia.

According to Roman law certain basic legal principles are required by nature, or so obvious that they should be applied universally without needing to be enacted into law by a legislator. The assertion in the United States’ Declaration of Independence, “We hold these truths to be self-evident,” expresses some of this sentiment. The rules or principles of natural justice are now regularly applied by the courts in both common law and Roman law jurisdictions. Natural justice operates on the principles that man is basically good, that a person of good intent should not be harmed, and one should treat others as one would like to be treated

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