Unethical Human Experiments

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It is no longer a secret that the US carried out unethical medical tests on sex workers, prisoners and some soldiers in Guatemala from 1946 to 1948. Reports have also surfaced that the same government conducted the Tuskegee Syphilis study mainly on the African-American male population in the 1930s by the USPHS. However, a section of Americans is resistant to accept this information even after the Obama administration publicly apologized to the victims in 2010. According to psychologists, two key assumptions are cited for this kind of resistance. The strong religious ties of some Americans and the political class which does not appreciate science is the first cause of the resistance. Secondly, psychologists argue that people are bound to resist information if it is in contradiction with what they learned as children, their intuition and expectations. The scholars further note that the resistance will be visible even in adulthood especially if scientific facts are disputed in the society coupled with the lack of a non-scientific alternative backed by reason and advocated by opinion leaders in the society. In both experiments, hundreds of men and women were intentionally infected with gonorrhea and syphilis. The doctors who were behind the tests targeted vulnerable groups including mental health patients, African-Americans, orphans, sex workers and soldiers without their consent. According to Rogers the motive of the tests was to find out the value of various drugs such as antibiotic penicillin (1). However, such action remains unethical and unacceptable because the victims were denied an opportunity to make informed consent. It was also unethical for the doctors to

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