Hiram College’s Ethics Bowl team competed in the Upper Midwest Regional Ethics Bowl last month, ending the day 2-2 against a field of 20 other teams from Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin and Minnesota. The competition took place at Harper College in Palatine, Ill. on Nov. 15, 2014.
The team included Mackenzie Barry ’16 of Twinsburg (English and Spanish double major), Meghan Hoofring ‘15 of Timonium, Md. (political science major), Brian Wilbur ’15 of Manchester (neuroscience major) and John McClean ’16 of Manchester (philosophy major).
The Hiram team brought home its two wins with Hoofring’s arguments on the morality of former Mozilla CEO Brendon Eich’s ouster for the effects of his public opposition to same-sex marriage, and with Barry’s arguments on the ethical justification of stealing another person’s pet when one believes it to be neglected and suffering.
The other two cases were well argued by Wilbur (the use of nutritional shakes for famine relief) and Hoofring (the legitimacy of laws banning smoking in cars with children as passengers), but the Hiram team faced fierce competition. All four team members contributed ably to the critical debate in these cases and contributed to the team’s strong performance.
Ethics Bowl is a national intercollegiate competition, sponsored by the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics, in which students present ethical analyses of randomly selected cases that they have prepared prior to the competition. Presenting without notes, they are scored on the clarity of their presentation, their avoidance of ethically irrelevant issues, their identification of the central ethical issues of the case, their awareness of other possible viewpoints, as well as their ability to respond to criticisms and questions from the other team and the judges.
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