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Public Policy (Law) — United States
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In Search of Common Ground [electronic resource]: Remaking Public Policy on Human Life Issues

Do Americans still hold certain truths to be self-evident? Do all human beings possess inalienable rights endowed by their creator? Are all lives of equal value? And if so, how do those core beliefs translate into public policy on issues such as healthcare, poverty, abortion, capital punishment, and euthanasia? This program explores what the late Joseph Cardinal Bernardin called a "consistent ethic of life," explaining how it might be used as a framework for finding common ground between rival interests and how it could be applied to serving the common good.
2006; 2001

A Matter of Life and Death [electronic resource]: Politics of Abortion and Capital Punishment

When it comes to situations involving life and death, the United States is strongly polarized. Liberals commonly support the legality of abortion as a private matter of personal choice but condemn the death penalty as inhumane, while conservatives often support execution as a form of justice but denounce abortion as legalized murder. How did these points of view become a part of the ideologies of the left and the right? This program traces the development of political stances on life-and-death issues, exposing the lack of a consistent life ethic in mainstream American politics.
2006; 2001

Gay Marriage and the Constitution [electronic resource]

This ABC News program looks at the constitutional controversy over gay marriage as it exploded in both Massachusetts and California in February 2004. Is it a matter of civil rights or human rights? Should it be addressed at a state level or a federal level? Ted Koppel moderates a debate about gay marriage and its legal ramifications with Representative Barney Frank, conservative political activist Gary Bauer, and San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, who arranged for the issuance of marriage licenses to eligible same-sex couples because the California Family Code is allegedly in violation of the state's constitution in the matter of gay marriage.
2006; 2004

Peter Jennings Reporting [electronic resource]: Guantanamo

According to the Bush Administration, the war on terror requires new tactics and new thinking-including departure from the Geneva Conventions when deemed necessary. Guantanamo shows how that policy is implemented at Camp Delta, how it is vigorously defended in the name of national security, and how it is contested just as passionately on behalf of personal freedom and human rights. Reporter Peter Jennings interviews Gitmo's commanding general and former Administration insiders, shedding light on decision-making within the White House-while firsthand accounts of experiences inside the prison compose the darkest dimensions of the story.
2005; 2004

Stem Cells [electronic resource]: Ethical Issues

Providing a balanced look at a highly contentious issue, this program takes viewers inside the scientific, religious, and philosophical debate over embryonic stem cell research. Divergent opinions and perspectives are presented by respected researchers, thinkers, and stakeholders-including renowned Australian geneticist Dr. Alan Trounson; Father Norman Ford, a prominent ethics commentator and opponent of embryonic stem cell research; and patients with life-threatening medical conditions that stem cell innovations could potentially treat or cure. Each speaker identifies core principles and calmly articulates the reasons for his or her views.
2009; 2006

Legislating Morality [electronic resource]: There Oughta Be a Law!

When Americans become outraged with behavior considered immoral or unethical, a typical response is to call on state legislatures or Congress to pass legislation outlawing it. Can government impose morality on its people by banning negative behavior or mandating positive behavior? History suggests that such efforts, though well-intentioned in many cases, are often ineffective. This program examines the successes and failures of law as a source of ethics in the U.S. with former New York governor Mario Cuomo; legal scholar Thomas DiBacco of American University; and Nadine Strossen, President of the American Civil Liberties Union.
2006; 1996

The Abortion War [electronic resource]: Thirty Years After Roe V. Wade

In the years since the U.S. Supreme Court's legalization of abortion, the political scene has changed dramatically enough to threaten this landmark decision. On the 30th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, this ABC News program surveys the current landscape of opinion and political alignment, examining the shift of momentum concerning abortion rights. Correspondent Dave Marash reports from Minnesota, while anchor Chris Bury discusses the issue with a panel of women who hold disparate views on abortion rights.
2006; 2003