June 27, 2019 9:00 pm

Tomorrow Night, We Investigate the World of Bioethics

On this week’s Cosmic Queries episode of StarTalk Radio, we cover science, philosophy, social economics, government oversight, and a lot more…all under one subject: Bioethics. Neil deGrasse Tyson is joined by comic co-host Paul Mecurio and returning guest NYU bioethicist and philosopher Matthew Liao to answer fan-submitted questions on bioethics.

StarTalk’s photo of Neil deGrasse Tyson, Matthew Liao, and Paul Mecurio in Neil’s office at The Hayden Planetarium.

Neil deGrasse Tyson, Matthew Liao, and Paul Mecurio. Credit: StarTalk©.

You may remember Matthew’s first StarTalk appearance on our Human Augmentation, with Adam Savage and Neil deGrasse Tyson episode, which took place at NY Comic Con 2017. (This episode is also one of my personal favorites so if you haven’t checked it out I highly recommend it.)

We dive into some bioethical discussion on that episode, but on this episode you’ll get the full investigation on what the field is, the hot issues of the day, and what the future of humanity looks like through a bioethical lens. To start, you’ll learn just exactly what “bioethics” is. Matthew explains why trust is a big component of the bioethical field and in making bioethical decisions.

Ponder the limits of human experimentation as we examine The Belmont Report, Nazi experiments during World War II, and the infamous “Tuskegee Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male.” Explore the issue of vaccines and the importance of public duty. Discover more about “Threshold Deontology.” We also explore the bioethical questions at play in the film The Secret of Santa Vittoria.

You’ll hear about CRISPR, “designer babies,” and how to deal with the repercussions of genetic inequality. As the world explores more options of DNA and gene-editing to make “perfect” humans, Neil raises the question, “Isn’t so much of what we are what we’ve been through to overcome what we’re not?” Lastly, we investigate the role of artificial intelligence in bioethics. All that, plus, we look at where religion and natural law fit into the bioethics discussion.

Please join us tomorrow night for Cosmic Queries – Bioethics at 7pm ET right here on our website, as well as on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn. If you’re an All-Access subscriber, you can watch or listen to this episode ad-free at 7pm, too.

That’s it for now. Keep Looking Up!
-Ian Mullen