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9' Hunger as an Ethical Issue

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2. To understand the key ethical issues/questions related ... Discontinue technological solutions/ health care that expand longevity and/or reduce ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: 9' Hunger as an Ethical Issue


1
9. Hunger as an Ethical Issue
  • Larry D. Sanders
  • Spring 2002

Dept. of Ag Economics Oklahoma State
University
2
INTRODUCTION
  • Purpose
  • to understand ethical issues related to hunger
  • Learning Objectives
  • 1. To become aware of population and hunger
    trends.
  • 2. To understand the key ethical
    issues/questions related
  • to hunger and connections to population
    growth.

3
Food Nutrition/Health Policy Options
  • Education
  • Labelling
  • Food Assistance
  • Food Stamps
  • Food Distribution Programs
  • School Lunch Programs
  • WIC
  • Welfare Reform
  • Free Market

4
World Hunger
  • AREA POPULATION FOOD
  • ASIA 40 15
  • AFRICA 10 5
  • L. AMERICA 10 10
  • EUROPE 25 45
  • N. AMERICA 10 25
  • OTHER 5 1

5
World Hunger (cont.)
  • Each minute 28 humans die from hunger
    malnutrition
  • 21 are children
  • Equals a Hiroshima every 3 days
  • Chronic Malnutrition 10 of World Population

6
World Hunger (cont.)
  • 2 x Deaths in All Wars Past 150 yrs Hunger
    Deaths in Past 5 yrs
  • 250,000 infants/small childrean die each week
    from diet-related, easily preventable diseases
  • Thousands more--diet-related blindness physical
    mental retardation

7
HUMAN POPULATION GROWTH, ESTIMATED PROJECTED
(3 Million BC-2036)
8000 BC 5-10 MIL. 5000 BC 20 MIL 3000 BC 50
MIL. 1400 BC 100 MIL. 0 200 MIL. 1200 400
MIL. 1700 800 MIL. 1900 1.5 BIL. 1960 3
BIL. 1996 6 BIL. 2036-50 11-12 BIL???
MILLION HUMANS
YEAR
8
World Hunger (cont.)
  • Not a food production problem
  • Economics--poverty--is the problem

9
World Hunger (cont.)
  • Economic development is the key
  • Education is the foundation for economic
    development
  • But . . .
  • What is the carrying capacity of earth?
  • What pressures can we expect to worsen?
  • Economic?
  • Physical?
  • Sociopolitical?

10
The Tragedy of the Commons Lifeboat Ethics
(Garrett Hardin--VP)
  • Common resources (oceans, air, public land) will
    be overused/ exploited
  • Price mechanism or property rights necessary to
    ration
  • Free food would lead to even greater tragedy
    (larger population crash)
  • Carrying capacity important
  • Alternative view Lifeboat view (utilitarian)
    forces competitive view (human-human
    human-nonhuman) rather than cooperative view

11
Foreign Agricultural AssistanceEthical Issues
(TMR)
  • An issue of distributive justice
  • Charity?
  • Human survival/ decency?
  • Strategic measures?
  • Emergency assistance vs. Development assistance?

12
Some Ethical Questions Is Hunger a Reason
to--
  • Legally restrict human reproduction?
  • Encourage population control?
  • Restrict/eliminate meat consumption or grain for
    animal feed?
  • Promote biotechnology to grow more food?
  • Sacrifice habitat/species/ ecosystems to grow
    more food?
  • Do little/nothing let nature restore a balance?
  • Discontinue technological solutions/ health care
    that expand longevity and/or reduce death rates
    and/or increase birth rates?

13
More Ethical QuestionsIf we save people from
hunger--
  • How do we/they suffer the reduced quality of
    life?
  • How do we/they accept the near certain increases
    in crime/violence/war?
  • How do we/they handle increased pressures on
    natural resources?
  • How do we/they handle increased pressures on
    social infrastructure?
  • Can we continue to count on the technological fix?

14
Team Exercise
  • Using the human population lecture the
    carrying capacity handout Hardins articles
  • 1. Discuss the issues of agricultural production
    and natural resource management.
  • 2. Consider alternative policy options to address
    these issues.
  • 3. Outline/summarize the recommended evolution of
    the social contract with agriculture in the
    next 10-15 years with respect to environmental
    issues.
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