[Also read .Human Experimentation]
Scientific skill is no innoculant against moral collapse; indeed, if scientific skill has any relation to moral decline, history suggests it may be a risk factor. Patrick G. Derr, "Hadamar, Hippocrates, and the Future of Medicine: Reflections on Euthanasia and the History of German Medicine." Issues in Law and Medicine. 1989.
We now know of still another case of medical researchers experimenting on the weak, on those who have little voice or power. There is a pattern here, but researchers deny it and many others refuse to see it, but the times they are a changin'.
U.S. Apologizes for Syphilis Tests in Guatemala
By DONALD G. McNEIL Jr.
The New York Times
October 1, 2010
From 1946 to 1948, American public health doctors deliberately infected nearly 700 Guatemalans — prison inmates, mental patients and soldiers — with venereal diseases in what was meant as an effort to test the effectiveness of penicillin...
Keep in mind too, that penicillin was not produced in quantity until 1945, so almost as soon as the drug was available, US scientists started their experiments, at essentially the same time the German and Japanese were experimenting on prisoners, not a new practice, to be sure. See my essay: "Human Experimentation," March 20, 2008.
Vivisectors -- those who experiment on living humans or other animals without their informed consent -- like to say that past examples of their ilk's socio-psychopathology should be forgotten, but of course, like this official US apology for something that happened almost seventy years ago, genuine evil behavior isn't forgotten.