Monday, February 19, 2007


Should the data gathered from the Nazi Death Camp Experiments be allowed to be used?

I say yes.
1. Data has no ethics in and of itself. Apples are red has no moral implications, no matter how many apples you threw at people to convice them that they are red. The data gathered from the experiments, although from undeniably evil means, are amoral and cannot be held to any moral standards as it is just a peice of information.
2. Although some of the data may be skewed, there is no way we can get other data to prove that it is skewed. This is the basis of all scientific theories. They can never be true, they can only be disproven. As soon as the data from the experiments is disproven then it can be discounted. Currently it is the best data we have, so we need to deal with it.
3. It does not set a precedent. All that we say by using the data is that we need data. There is no condoning of the Nazis in using their data anymore than touring their death camps is equivalent to reopening them.
4. The data has already saved lives.

Argue away!


Vvyynn said...

I'd post more, but....CAS.

I agree with Wolf. I'v efulfilled my post, I'm going back into my cave now.

Good bye.


Greg Nelson said...

I would have said yes online, since I feel it is a waste of the lives of those lost to not use the data collected. We cannot change the past, and thus we are not necessarily condoning the horrors inflicted on those in the past. One of the best things we can do is to learn from the past, and thus there is no benefit to be had from disposing of the data simply because it was obtained using unethical means. As Wolf said, there is nothing inherently unethical about data itself.

The only reason I clicked no on the website was because of the evidence that many experiments were "bad science" and thus may not be trusted. I feel current scientists should analyze the methods used by the Nazi scientists and judge whether they feel it is valid. Perhaps we cannot replicate the process to see if the data is correct, but we could examine the process used. As long as modern day scientists feel it is good according to scientific standards, I feel we should use the data.

Dmitriy Polyakov said...

Data is data, no matter the means by which it was attained. The hundreds of people who suffered and died as victims to these experiments would have lost their lives in vain, if we did not use their previous agony to help others today.
Again, these experiments could not be legally redone in many parts of the world at the present, except perhaps North Korea.

AmyLM said...

I am very split over this issue. Where I do recognize and agree, to a certain extent, that data in and of itself has no moral implications and therefore cannot be condoned for those reasons, I still feel a sickening feeling in my gut at the thought of using data collected by such methods.
In a response to the comment posted by dmitriy, I have to disagree to an extent with the comment about how the hundreds of people would have died in vain if we did not use the data. I see this somewhat as giving slight justification to what the Nazi did to them and the 'reasearch' they performed. In my opinion the only way those people could have died in vain would be if the world did not recognize the horror that they went through and took steps to ensure that it never happened again.