Heinz and the Drug
In Europe a woman was near death from a special
kind of cancer. There was one drug that doctors thought
might save her. It was a form of radium that a druggist
in the same town had recently discovered. The drug was expensive
to make, but the druggist was charging ten times what the
drug cost to make. He paid $200 for the radium and charged
$2,000 for a small dose of the drug. The sick woman's husband,
Heinz, went to everyone he knew to borrow the money, but
he could only get together about $1,000, which is half of
what it cost. He told the druggist that his wife was dying,
and asked him to sell it cheaper or let him pay later. But
the druggist said, "No, I discovered the drug and I'm going
to make money on it." So Heinz got desperate and began to
think about breaking into the man's store to steal the drug
for his wife. Should Heinz steal the drug?
Please rate the following statements in
terms of their importance in making a decision about what
to do in the dilemma. (1=Great importance, 2=Much importance,
3=Some Importance, 4=Little importance, 5=No importance)
- Whether a community's laws are going to
- Isn't it only natural for a loving husband
to care so much for his wife that he'd steal?
- Is Heinz willing to risk getting shot as
a burglar or going to jail for the chance that stealing
the drug might help?
- Whether Heinz is a professional wrestler,
or had considerable influence with professional wrestlers.
- Whether Heinz is stealing for himself or
doing this solely to help someone else.
- Whether the druggist's rights to his invention
have to be respected.
- Whether the essence of living is more encompassing
than the termination of dying, socially and individually.
- What values are going to be the basis for
governing how people act towards each other.
- Whether the druggist is going to be allowed
to hide behind a worthless law which only protects the
- Whether the law in the case is getting
in the way of the most basic claim of any member of society.
- Whether the druggist deserves to be robbed
for being so greedy and cruel.
- Would stealing in such a case bring about
more total good for the whole society or not.
Now please rank the top four most important
statements. Put the number of the statement in the blank:
____ Most important item
____ Second most important item
____ Third most important item
____ Fourth most important item