Adverse selection occurs when one party has an information advantage over the other party. In the case of insurance, people taking out insurance know more about their health and lifestyle than the insurance company. Therefore, in order to reduce information asymmetry, the insurance company asks prospective customers to complete a medical questionnaire and/or submit to a medical examination. Knowing the health risks associated with the people taking out insurance allows the insurance company to better adjust the premiums that it charges. For example, the premium for smokers is higher than for nonsmokers.
Some people are subject to genetically inherited health problems, such as Alzheimer’s disease, ALS, and Huntington’s disease. Huntington’s, for example, is an incurable degenerative brain disorder that affects about 1 in 10,000 people. Children of a parent who has Huntington’s have a 50% chance of inheriting the disease.
Legislation in Belgium, Denmark, Fin-land, France, Norway, and Sweden make it illegal to discriminate against people who may have inherited diseases. Similar legislation was enacted in the United States in 2008, where the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act prohibits employment and insurance discrimination simply on the basis that a person has a genetic predisposition to developing a disease in the future.
There is no such legislation in Canada. But in February 2010, Member of Parliament Judy Wasylycia-Leis tabled a private member’s bill against genetic discrimination. She was opposed to genetic discrimination for three reasons. “One is that people who carry genes that code for particular diseases may or may not eventually develop them. The second is that some people may not want to be forced to take a test because they don’t want to know what their eventual fate in life may be. Finally, the third is that people who do want to take a test for health reasons may not do so because they fear having the results used against them.” Her bill did not get beyond first reading. In April 2013, Liberal Senator James Cowan tabled a similar bill that would stop insurance companies from discriminating on the basis of genetic testing.
Questions
1.Do you consider it to be unethical for insurance companies to charge high-risk people a higher premium than low-risk people?
2. Are insurance companies acting responsibly when they require customers to disclose medical information and/or submit to a medical examination?
3. Argue either in favor of or opposed to Senator Cowan’s proposed legislation.

 

 

Sample solution

Dante Alighieri played a critical role in the literature world through his poem Divine Comedy that was written in the 14th century. The poem contains Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. The Inferno is a description of the nine circles of torment that are found on the earth. It depicts the realms of the people that have gone against the spiritual values and who, instead, have chosen bestial appetite, violence, or fraud and malice. The nine circles of hell are limbo, lust, gluttony, greed and wrath. Others are heresy, violence, fraud, and treachery. The purpose of this paper is to examine the Dante’s Inferno in the perspective of its portrayal of God’s image and the justification of hell. 

In this epic poem, God is portrayed as a super being guilty of multiple weaknesses including being egotistic, unjust, and hypocritical. Dante, in this poem, depicts God as being more human than divine by challenging God’s omnipotence. Additionally, the manner in which Dante describes Hell is in full contradiction to the morals of God as written in the Bible. When god arranges Hell to flatter Himself, He commits egotism, a sin that is common among human beings (Cheney, 2016). The weakness is depicted in Limbo and on the Gate of Hell where, for instance, God sends those who do not worship Him to Hell. This implies that failure to worship Him is a sin.

God is also depicted as lacking justice in His actions thus removing the godly image. The injustice is portrayed by the manner in which the sodomites and opportunists are treated. The opportunists are subjected to banner chasing in their lives after death followed by being stung by insects and maggots. They are known to having done neither good nor bad during their lifetimes and, therefore, justice could have demanded that they be granted a neutral punishment having lived a neutral life. The sodomites are also punished unfairly by God when Brunetto Lattini is condemned to hell despite being a good leader (Babor, T. F., McGovern, T., & Robaina, K. (2017). While he commited sodomy, God chooses to ignore all the other good deeds that Brunetto did.

Finally, God is also portrayed as being hypocritical in His actions, a sin that further diminishes His godliness and makes Him more human. A case in point is when God condemns the sin of egotism and goes ahead to commit it repeatedly. Proverbs 29:23 states that “arrogance will bring your downfall, but if you are humble, you will be respected.” When Slattery condemns Dante’s human state as being weak, doubtful, and limited, he is proving God’s hypocrisy because He is also human (Verdicchio, 2015). The actions of God in Hell as portrayed by Dante are inconsistent with the Biblical literature. Both Dante and God are prone to making mistakes, something common among human beings thus making God more human.

To wrap it up, Dante portrays God is more human since He commits the same sins that humans commit: egotism, hypocrisy, and injustice. Hell is justified as being a destination for victims of the mistakes committed by God. The Hell is presented as being a totally different place as compared to what is written about it in the Bible. As a result, reading through the text gives an image of God who is prone to the very mistakes common to humans thus ripping Him off His lofty status of divine and, instead, making Him a mere human. Whether or not Dante did it intentionally is subject to debate but one thing is clear in the poem: the misconstrued notion of God is revealed to future generations.

 

References

Babor, T. F., McGovern, T., & Robaina, K. (2017). Dante’s inferno: Seven deadly sins in scientific publishing and how to avoid them. Addiction Science: A Guide for the Perplexed, 267.

Cheney, L. D. G. (2016). Illustrations for Dante’s Inferno: A Comparative Study of Sandro Botticelli, Giovanni Stradano, and Federico Zuccaro. Cultural and Religious Studies4(8), 487.

Verdicchio, M. (2015). Irony and Desire in Dante’s” Inferno” 27. Italica, 285-297.