Re-thinking the Milgram Obedience Experiment

Re-thinking the Milgram Obedience Experiment

Reflecting on the fiftieth anniversary of the Milgram Obedience Experiment (in which subjects were instructed to apply seemingly-painful shock treatments to victims being held in another area of their testing facility), John M. Grohol goes deeper into the ethics of the study in his article Psychology Secrets: People Aren’t as Evil as the Milgram Obedience Experiment Suggested. While the study nevertheless continues to support the suggestibility of many to apparent authority figures, perhaps Grohol’s report could be subtitled (based on the material that has come to light about the methods used in the study): “Researchers Aren’t Always as Ethical as Presumed.”

Both sides of the report illustrate in part the need to think reflectively about assertions of truth, no matter who makes them. This concept is taught and exemplified in the Bible:

1 John 4:1: Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.”

Acts 17:11: These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.”

Developing ethical business practices

Developing ethical business practices

This article by Dr. Hershey H. Friedman, professor of Business and Marketing at the Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, proposes a set of guidelines drawn from the Hebrew Bible that can be used to form a code of ethics for business. For example, Principle 8 is “Not giving bad advice to the unwary or placing temptation before the morally weak.” It is helpful to observe these guidelines are not simply about playing fairly; they redirect the sellers of goods and services toward making a positive contribution for their customers and communities.



Christian Morality vs. Atheist Morality

Christian Morality vs. Atheist Morality

In a public debate in 1929, W. L. Oliphant, a preacher from the Oak Cliff Church of Christ, Dallas, Texas, debated Charles Smith, President of the American Association of the Advancement of Atheism, who affirmed the proposition: “Atheism is Beneficial to the Race, and is Most Conducive to Morality of any Theory Known to Man.” Oliphant provided a powerful list of moral principles Christians should follow.