Volume 10, Spring 2013, Issue 1

  • Marshall B. Kapp, J.D., M.P.H.

    Human Biological Materials (HBM) come from individuals in a variety of circumstances. The use of HBM for research purposes raises a host of difficult ethical questions. The law is important in this arena because, in most cases, legal principles significantly influence the making of ethical choices. Following a general overview of research regulation in the United States generally, and a few comments on the relevance of international statements for this country, this article explores several specific legal issues, and their ethical implications, related to the obtaining and handling of HBM for research purposes, namely: informed consent, privacy, and commercial or ownership (property) interests in HBM. The article concludes that, although the realistic liability risks are low, the law’s important role in characterizing the rights and responsibilities involved will be very influential in shaping the ways that the chasm between science and ethics is resolved within the context of the use of human tissue for research purposes. View More


  • Megan Filoon

    New York is a place familiar with crises. From the crime outbreak of the 1970s to the financial crisis of 2008, New York has dealt with significant economic and social troubles. Luckily, New York does not remain in a state of decline for long. From the ashes of these crises, New York has discovered ways to regain its prominent global position. New York’s most recent improvement followed the 2008 financial crisis and took aim at a divisive social issue: same-sex marriage. View More


  • Carmen M. Cusack, J.D., PH.D.C.

    Not all same-sex partners are born homosexual. Many people in same-sex relationships are born homosexual, but some choose same-sex relationships. Biologically heterosexual women can choose to live in same-sex relationships with other women: lesbians, bisexuals, transsexuals, or heterosexuals. There are many reasons why a woman might want to marry another woman. A heterosexual person may choose a same-sex relationship because her life partner is her platonic best friend, or because her options for binary coupling are subpar. A woman may use a same-sex relationship as a tool to make a political statement about patriarchy. A woman may become involved in a same-sex relationship as a result of psychological trauma. Biologically heterosexual women may use same-sex relationships to satisfy their desires to couple in a stable environment; as a statement about women, family, and society; or as a coping mechanism to heal the abuse suffered during a previous heterosexual relationship. View More