Should Obama Have Released the Photos of Bin Laden’s Body?

From any of our categories involving information ethics, select two current cases and do a comparative analysis of ethical issues involved. No format this time, just your analysis of both situations and the challenges of message-making/information-sharing. OR find a substantive resource that addresses multiple course issues such as season one of TRUE DETECTIVE. This
dark, disturbing thriller uses period-accurate photos & film to advance the story but contemporary music, carefully selected to create moods & become virtually a character in the series. Although the story is fictional, it reflects crimes of our times. For the information-ethics aspect here, you would research current numbers of the types of crimes the program describes, perhaps the level of corruption on the part of law enforcement in rural areas, etc. The program invites new examinations of our concept of heroes and, of course, ties in to the ethics of A&E. The series has been criticized for its negative depiction of women.

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From the items below, choose 4, first organizing your analyses using Bok’s framework of consulting your own conscience, searching for alternative ways to meet goals without compromising ethics, and researching and/or imagining how others will respond to your proposed act. It’s helpful to imagine dialogues among key stakeholder groups, but you do not need to include the imaginary conversations in your written analyses. Then use whatever ethical frames seem best to you to take a position you consider ethical, always including our base framework of accuracy, access, accountability, trust.
2.    From cases/issues in the current NYT, choose any case study of information ethics and analyze.
3.    From an issue or case in the current NYT re: advertising or advocacy, do a comparative analysis of another organization with a corresponding ethics issue.
4.    From an issue or case in the current NYT re: information-sharing through photo/video, choose any case study for analysis.
5.    From an issue or case in the current NYT re: new media, choose any case study for analysis.
6.    Wild card—an analysis of an ethics case from the news with article/s attached.
Content is more important than specific length, but do comment on overall strategy, any impact of policies/procedures, channel choices, and quality of relationships with impacted publics.

Portfolio of Case Analyses
Boyana Todorova
COM 4900: Ethical Issues
Professor L. Lopez05/18/11
 

Table of Contents
 

  1. Case 1: Comparative analysis. 3-6
  2. Case 2-B: Is it News Yet?
  3. Case 6-A: Cable News:24/7 Political Speech or Something Else?.

 

  1. Case 2: Case 2-D The Spouse is Squeezed 7-9

 
III.       Case 3: Comparative analysis 10-12

  1. Case 3-F: In the Eye of the Beholder: Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty
  2. Axe “Self-Esteem” Campaign.

 

  1. Case 4: Case 5-C Blind Justice?. 13-15

 

  1. Case 5: Case 10-E Hate Radio: The Outer Limits of Tasteful Broadcasting. 16-17

 

  1. Case 6: Wild card Assignment: Releasing Osama bin Laden’s Assassination Photos.18-20

 
VII.     Case 7: Flourishing Person Analysis. 21-22
 
VIII.   Appendix. 22-29
Case 1: Comparative Analysis
Case 2-B: Is it News Yet? vs Case 6-A: Cable News; 24/7 Political Speech or Something Else?
 
In my experience, some of the most debated cases often include an issue of the freedom of speech and the ethicality of certain type of announcements and comments in the social media. The two case: “Is it News Yet?” and “”Cable News…?” present the same type of dilemma. Both are very familiar due to the fact that the comments in question were made by two public individuals employed by reputable news channels. In evaluating the ethicality of the information given by the two, I wish to first introduce the two aspects of the case as I see them. The first aspect will be whether the news channels’ employees were under the obligation to follow the ethical guidelines of the news media or not. In other words, would the audience have recognized their comments as objective news reports or simply as the personal opinions of two knowledgeable people? The second aspect, then, is to analyses the comments themselves in evaluating their ethicality and also reviewing the possible consequences they might lead to.
Let’s first begin with an analysis of the influence Mr. Cafferty and Mr. Cramer possess over their general audience and the accountability they should have as a result of their status. Mad Money seems to be a hybrid between a TV entertainment show and a financial newsroom. While to me this combination sounds peculiar, it seems that Mr. Cramer’s unique approach manages to get people interested. On itself, the idea is fascinating since it finds a way to keep common people informed of current financial trends and it helps them build a quick knowledge of the inner workings of the world of finance. No matter how informative the show is, however, I cannot say that it qualifies as a news report. It seems more like Mr. Cramer’s personal financial blog through which he allows people to follow his trading history and opinion of the stock market. In addition CNBC’s disclaimer’s warning stating that viewers “should not take any opinion expressed by Cramer as a specific inducement to make a particular investment or follow a particular strategy” further confirms my observations that Mr. Cramer is simply expressing his personal opinion, backed by his experience as a hedge fund manager, and is not trying to present an objective and expressive overview of the stock market. In addition, we need to also consider the fact that Mr. Cramer holds investments of his own and, therefore, his opinion and comments might be skewed due to this fact. He has no legal or ethical obligation to maximize his audience’s profits (unlike a personal financial advisor).  Therefore, I can say that I do not believe Mr. Cramer should be held responsible for making the wrong assumption about the future performance of a particular company.
In contrast to the show Mad Money, The Situation Room is an acclaimed newscast and as such it has the obligation to keep its information objective and ethical. Mr. Cafferty, however, is not a part of the team of reporters and newscasters leading the show, but has a commentary segment in which he offers his views and opinions on various high profile issues. His job as I see it is to initialize a discussion on a specific topic and then offer his personal thoughts spiced by his ability to freely speak his mind and offer his raw criticism of a given matter. His situation, therefore is no different from Mr. Cramer’s and it is clear to me, as it should be also to the general audience, that the opinion he expresses is not necessarily objective and even factually accurate.
Let’s now look at the second aspect of the situation and actually evaluate whether the information given by the two hosts is ethical and suitable for broadcast on the media. While we are all as citizens protected by the constitution and given the freedom of speech and expression, the Bill of Rights does not annul our ethical obligations to our fellow citizens and to our country and society. With that said, I believe that any public figure that has the reputation as an expert in certain field is responsible to share with his audience and followers information that is ethical and accurate to the best of their knowledge. With that established, let us now examine more closely Mr. Cramer’s statements. His advice concerning the stock market in 2008 presents us with some dilemmas. On one hand, Mr. Cramer admitted that he knew, or was suspecting, that Bear Sterns was not doing well but, at the same time, he advice his caller to keep his investments in the bank. His reasons behind this decision, however, seem plausible. While I do not condemn his choice not to expose the banks extreme vulnerability, as this protected the bank’s assets, I believe that he could have handled the situation better and at least made a less affirmative announcement that would have prompted people to do additional research before following his advice. Ironically, his statement in October contradicts his previous desire to maintain a positive view of the market and to avoid spreading panic among the population. Advising people to withdraw all of their short-term investments from the market immediately can surely led to bank runs and long-term consequences for many companies. Thus, I believe that Mr. Cramer did not act ethically because the information he presented had the potential to harm our economic system and to spread panic among the population. He, again, could have handled the situation better by making a less affirmative statement possibly urging people to apply more caution in their dealings with financial securities.
While we can argue to the ethicality of Mr. Cramer’s comments, it is clear that Mr. Cafferty’s remarks of the China failed to meet to pass our ethical guidelines. His statement was deprived of tact, it was also spiteful and even bored with racisms. Here, we need to consider the possible consequences as they relate to America’s international relationship with China, as well as with its Chinese-American citizens. In addition, I believe that he should have issued an official apology to the Chinese people, in which he should have emphasized his intention to criticize the two governments’ inadequate trade relationship and not to personally attack their citizens.
In conclusion, we need to be aware that public figures and acclaimed experts are governed by stricter rules of information ethics due to their status. While every American citizen is guaranteed the right of freedom of speech, we need to recognize the fact that certain information can be dangerous and harmful to the general population when handled inadequately or when presented by the wrong person.
Case 2: The Spouse is Squeezed – A South Carolina TV Reporter’s Attempt to Conceal Her Source
 This is a complicated case that exposes the possible negative consequences that might occur as a result from even the most noble and righteous clause. As the justice system is not all powerful, it needs to sometimes relay on whistle blowers to bring illegal acts and violations to the attention of the authorities. As such actions can greatly endanger such people; the law has devised a series of protections that shield the whistleblowers. All organizations also have specifically devised systems to be used for reporting the breach of law and company’s policy. To that end, Jack Duncan acted honorably when he decided to expose the breach of law by the deputy sheriff. He however, failed to act ethically when he contacted the press instead of the Department of Justice. While I am on the opinion that the public should know what I transpiring in the society, I believe that crimes should be first handled by the authorities as they can best assure the appropriate handling of information and the protection of the affected parties. The press, on the other hand, while expressively direct, can be very subjective and careless resulting in the possible violation of people’s privacies and freedoms. To that end. I agree with the courts that Mr. Duncan’s actions need to be punished so to discourage such deeds in the future. I, however, condemn the court’s persistent harassment of Ms. Hoopes’ husband to reveal his wife’s source. The court’s action here is in contrast with our whistleblower protection and can permanently hinder the ability of the press to gain access to crucial information. If the reporters can no longer relay on the law to protect the privacy of their sources, then people would stop contacting the media and thus disturb the flow of information to the general public. A third aspect of the case is the punishment that the deputy sheriff received. Paying a fine of $250 dollars for civil rights violation is outrageous, especially when we consider the punishment that Mr. Duncan received for his failure to contact the proper authorities. The deputy sheriff’s actions not only violated the privacy of the prisoner, but also resulted in the inability of the courts to convict and jail Mr. Quattlebaum who was clearly guilty of murder. In this specific case it seems to me that the courts punished the whistleblower for coming forward with the information while they simply gave the truly guilty person a slap on the wrist.
Going forward with Bok’s model, let us now consider an alternative course of action. As I already discussed before, I believe that Mr. Duncan should have contacted the authorities first and foremost and provided them with the videotape. I am not sure whether him contacting the press is such a terrible offence as the news station actually handled the video ethically by removing the sound and, thus, protecting the confidential information. I believe that Mr. Duncan could have tipped Ms. Hoopes about the violation without giving her the tape. This way, the prisoner’s rights would not have been under jeopardy and the public would have been kept informed. Keeping the society informed is another public believe that is backed up by the protection of the law itself. The fact that the First Amendment guarantees the freedom of speech and expression is an indicator of the emphasis we place on information.  In addition, in Ms. Hoopes’ place I would not have involved my husband in this story as this could (and did) threaten the confidentiality of my source. Lastly, the court should not have pressured Ms. Hoopes’ husband as this is unethical from the prospective that marriage is built on the basis of trust and the court’s request can put strains on this trust and can potentially damage the union. My reasoning is also backed up by our society’s believes of the sacred nature of marriage and the fact that it is an union that needs to be protected and respected. This view is expressed not only in our religious believes but also in the legal system and the protections and privileges it offers to married people.
The third step of Bok’s model calls for a public discussion to help us evaluate whether the alternative solution meets our society’s ethical guidelines. Based on my analysis of our law system and public believes, I can conclude that the American people would find my proposed alternative ethical and permissible. In this case, I used Kant’s categorical imperative as I believe that people can be driven by many different motives that can be judged as moral or immoral depending on an individual’s mid set. The consequences of their actions, however, are what we are primary concerned about and thus, this should be our main focus.
Case 3: Comparative Analysis
Case 3-F: In the Eye of the Beholder: Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty vs. Axe’s Ads
 
As humans, we are fascinated by beauty and strive to be surrounded by it in every aspect of our lives. It is, thus, no surprise that we would also try to shape our bodies into being more beautiful and desirable. But what constitutes beauty? This concept has had many different meanings throughout history but its influences, it seems, has been steadily growing. Today, our society has a rather exaggerated opinion of attractiveness and the media has helped to advertise these views up to the point where it is becoming a fixation for many women. We are constantly bombarded by images of what the “perfect” woman should look like. Strangely enough, we could very rarely associate with the images of perfection. This type of propaganda has had many negative consequences for our society such as the rise of eating disorder cases, the increase of depression cases among women and young adults, and the increasing longing to desired and liked. In addition, these unrealistic views of women lead us to have materialistic and very shallow approach to interpersonal and romantic relationships.
I believe that Dove’s Real Beauty campaign is brilliant in that it aims to fight our twisted idea of beauty. In a market where companies thrive on telling women what products they need to buy in order to attain the unattainable definition of beauty, this company did the exact opposite. Dove researched the female market and used that research to great advantage. They could have easily played into women’s insecurities, but they didn’t. In addition, the campaign is effective, refreshing, new and sticky. By taking the non-traditional approach to the image of beauty, Dove created memorable commercials with which its audience can actually identify. The increase in Dove’s sales is an excellent indication of that success. Obviously this one campaign isn’t going to change the concept of beauty throughout the entire advertising industry, but it does show progress. It is also worth mentioning the fact that Dove did not get satisfied by starting this campaign, but it also continued expanding its reach to the different segments of the population by starting various different campaigns, such as “Onslaught”. More companies should take a step forward to eliminate stereotypes of body image. And it wouldn’t hurt if a super model was a size 10/12, either. Nothing is going to change women’s perceptions of beauty until a size 2 isn’t the ideal.
The campaign for Axe, like the Dove’s Real Beauty Campaign, was suited perfectly for a certain public audience. However, the problem arose when the public realized that both products were created under the same company. While Dove continued to implement the Campaign for Real Beauty, Axe’s campaign caused disgruntlement by sending an opposite message to the public. I believe that Unilever was able to commit their corporate social responsibility by launching the Real Beauty Campaign but, at the same time, its Axe brand cast a suspicious shadow to the company’s seemingly honorable intent. In the end, however, it all comes down to the question of whether they were able to increase the sales of Dove beauty products. Since both Dove and Axe are aiming for different target publics, it is inevitable that one side could create a controversial message to the other side. In the case of Axe, the product wasn’t telling the women to become sexually attractive like how they appeared in the commercial. Its main purpose was to provide young men self-esteem by having confidence to interact with women. In my opinion, since both brands are sharing the same value of “self-esteem,” it is important to show respect to each other in their campaign. While Dove gained wide support from their Real Beauty Campaign, Axe should have emphasized “self-esteem” as part of their value in the campaign. Rather than showing sexually appealing women in the commercials, it is preferable if they can add contents that could portray young men’s self-reliance to women at the same time. In this way, both brands could maintain different messages and have mutual value in their campaign at the same time.

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In this case, we need to again consider Kant’s ethical framework. Since Dove and Axe are both commercial companies, we cannot blame their owner for trying to expand the firms and increase sales and shareholder’s value. We need to consider that what is truly important is the method the executives choose to use t reach their goals. If they can find a way to advertise their product, while at the same time battle an unfair social stereotype or promote “self-esteem” to young adults, then we can applaud them for their ethical decisions and moral actions. As with every good intend, however, we need to be careful that the information we present is unbiased and that it is not ambiguous. Ambiguity is a big concern with moral actions as it can turn the best intention into a harmful consequence.
Case 4: Case 5-C Blind Justice? On Naming Kobe Bryant’s Accuser after the Rape Charge is Dropped
Even though our society is very advanced in certain aspects, it is also still very conservative when it comes to sexual issues and crimes. I, as a woman, can definitely relay to rape victims and understand their hesitance to publically admit of the injustice done to them. Even though they are the victims, our societal believes often make these women feel responsible, guilty, and even in some cases deserving the “punishment”. I agree with the laws that the state of Colorado has in order to shield rape victims from public scrutiny and additional humiliation. I am, however, amazed that not all states have such laws since having protections like these seem to me like a very logical need. Again, it is necessary for me to point out that the primary role of the courts is to protect the individual citizens, as well as the society as a whole. Another crucial responsibility of the authorities is to make sure that each trial is fair and thorough in order to avoid mistrial and false convictions. Keeping these two obligations in mind, then, let us examine the consequences of releasing the identity of rape victims for both parties.
As the Media Ethics team discussed in class, our society is greatly fascinated by drama, sex, and violence. In addition, as they clearly displayed, when these ideal are combined with the privileges given to us by the First Amendment, there could be greatly grievous consequences. In my opinion, this observation holds true also for revealing private information about victims of specifically sensitive crimes of very personal nature. Rape, of course, is such a crime in which a woman feels extremely sensitive and revealing her name to the public can only add to her sufferings and shame. In contrast to other cases, such as murder, the general audience is prone to judge rather than show sympathy for such victims. And why shouldn’t they act and think this way? After all, isn’t the primary defense in rape cases for the accused to convince the jury that the woman actually behaved provocatively, seducing, and persuading the defendant to have a sexual intercourse with her? One of the questions in the end of the chapter asks whether rape can be considered a special case. Given the way the lawyers and the court handle these cases, I say that rape is a very unique case. After all, who would even think to try to prove that a person acted so to persuade their attacker to stab, assault, hit, or shoot them?  In a recent article in the NY Times, “No Privacy of Rape Trial of two Officers”, the readers are presented with all the detailed and highly personal information about the victim revealed in a rape case. As the revelation itself is not humiliating enough, the defendant’s layers is then allowed to use every little seemingly irrelevant fact to prove that the victim is nothing but a devious, promiscuous woman who preys on men. The thought itself is outrageous to me and, thus, I can’t even imagine the strength it takes for women to not only face their assaulter, but also withstand the personal attacks and accusations in court. My question then is: Don’t these women suffer enough in the hands of our legal system for us to also have to reveal their names to the public? Why would they need to also withstand the public scrutiny and stigma? Revealing the identities of rape victims brings no benefits to the case or the society. We do not need to know detailed personal information about a person to know that what has been done to them is wrong and cruel. In addition, I do not believe that this act can, in any way, benefit the defendant, except to gain him supporters among the people who hold the public view that rape victims re often to be blamed for their own fame. It should not be surprising for us that such people will not be hard to find considering the way women are portrayed by hip-hop and rap artists. Many movies also showcase us as promiscuous and shallow sexual objects, dehumanizing us in favor of the popular culture. I, therefore, stand behind Colorado’s laws and applaud the press for not releasing the information.
There is also another aspect of this case that discusses whether civil rape cases differ from their criminal equivalency. While the crime itself should not be reviewed differently – a crime is equally grievous no matter how the person decides to receive compensation for it.  With that said, here I fail to apply Kant’s moral guidelines, as I believe that difference in the two type of cases lies solely in the intent of the accuser. In criminal cases, the victim seeks to punish the person who wronged them and potentially contribute to making our society safer. The guilty party is usually expected to serve jail time, thus preventing them from seeking retribution from their accuser. Therefore, we can say that the ultimate goal of the prosecutor in a criminal case is to make sure that the criminal will not be able to hurt the victim or anyone else again. In civil cases, on the other hand, the victim is seeking a material compensation for a caused discomfort or loss. There is, thus, no hint as to the victim’s concern for her safety. As rape is such an emotional and personal crime, I cannot believe that truly hurt women will be satisfied with receiving money for their sufferings. I would imagine that they would be scared and that they would desire to see their attacker punished and locked away where he can no longer harm them. Aristitle’s philosophy here is a very good guideline. While both courts will allow for the guilty party to prosecuted and punished, I believe that the motives of the victim in each cases are fundamentally different and thus, criminally prosecuted rape cases are very different that civil cases. In civil cases, the victim basically undermines her own ordeals and in a way announces that the damage done is simply material. Therefore, I cannot bring myself to believe that such cases require the extra shield of protection available for criminal rape cases. To that end, I believe that publishing the identity of the woman after she has withdrawn her criminal charges and started a civil suit is not unethical.
 Case 5: Case 10-E Hate Radio: The Outer Limits of Tasteful Broadcasting
 Americans take big pride in the fact that we live in a democratic society. We all recite the Pledge of Allegiance at school in the morning and we all study and hold dear the Bill of Rights that allow us to maintain the democracy we are all so proud of. In other words, we are very patriotic and we openly support our superior social and political system and we passionately criticize the inferior communist and socialist nations. This case study, however, reminds us of the fact that nothing is simply black and white and, thus, we need to look deeper in order to see the true face of America. While we are advertising democracy and equality to Third World countries, at home we are hardy so liberal. We see inequality and discrimination everywhere we go, every single day. It is reflected in the social niches at school divided by race, religion, and gender; by the entertainment media; by the social media and many other mediums. Radio shows, such as Van Lansing’s program, are a perfect example of the irony surrounding our societal beliefs.
In my opinion, the freedom of speech and expression can be equally empowering as well as harming. As the saying goes, with great freedom come great responsibilities. We all have the obligation to protect our rights and to strive to better our society. Hate speech, while brutally honest, brings about negative emotions and increases the already wide gap between the societal groups. Therefore, I believe that this is one case, where we need to give up some of our freedom in order to create a more peaceful and functional society.
As with every issue, however, there are two sides that can be equally appealing and reasonable. Some might argue that through programs such as Van Lansing’s show, regular people can be allowed to express their displeasure with our social and political structure and bring about valid points. Other benefits of this type of media include the ability to reach to people and to bring our point across; to be able to gather people together under the same flag and then together to try and change the system. Hate speech can be particularly successful in stirring people due to the intense emotions it brings about. Emotional people, however, are more likely to act on an impulse and we all know the dangers associated with that. To that note, while I am not denying the effectiveness of hate speech, I am questioning the consequences for the society as a whole that result from it. As members of a democratic society, we are allowed to publically express sour opinion and are given access to the law makers and politicians so that we can directly influence them to act in a way we deem favorable. Such access is given to us by the right to vote for the people who we believe share our views, we can lobby the officials so to bring our point across, and we can also publically protest an unwelcome act. All these are healthy substitutes to hate speech and have the exact opposite effect for the citizens of a community or the whole country. While hate speech often set people against each other and builds a negative emotional state, the above examples help to bring them together in a more intellectual and communal manner. In addition, hate speech tends to be contagious and viral. It often happens that one seemingly rational topic, such as a discussion on Welfare, can lead to a more aggressive, irrational subject, such as racial discrimination and religious intolerance. This is yet another thing that makes hate speech so dangerous and unreliable.
Let’s now consider the communitarian reasoning on the importance of the individual’s actions as they reflect on society. Using this ethical frame, we can evaluate the positive and negative consequences hate speech has on a society. In my view, hate speech has the potential to do more harm than good and thus, it should be deemed unethical. Communitarianism focuses on the society and views the individual as having a duty to act ethically in respect to his or her community. It overlaps with Aristotle’s view of duty to the whole and again emphasizes the citizen’s responsibility to restrain from activities that can potentially harm our society.
Case 6: Wild card Assignment
Should Obama Have Released the Photos of Bin Laden’s Body?
 
I am sure that many Americans were glad to hear about Osama bin Laden’s death and the fact that after so many years, he has finally answered for his crimes. The excitement this announcement created was primarily inspired by two distinctive views: people’s desire to see the man responsible for the death of so many finally punished and the comfort of knowing that the search is at last over and that one of the treats to our country has been eliminated. We, however, stay true to our human nature even in this dramatic moment – we still need solid evidence to settle our doubts and fears. The problem is, though, that the government with their actions has left us with little to no possibility for receiving such a proof. Obama’s funeral at sea was a tactful deed backed by solid logic. With the body gone, however, all that is left for the public to see are actual photographs and footage from the assault. This option, while sounding very simple and even appealing, comes attached with a lot of questions and concerns.
First, I would like to begin the discussion by expressing my personal view. I believe that, while I am curious, it is a good idea for the President not to release the photos. I was amazed to read all of the different opinions and the reasons behind them that people gave in support of one side of another. The CNN blog, “President Obama will not release bin Laden photos”, gave me an overview of the other views and also the motivations that led people to take a specific stand. Predominantly, there were bloggers that would disapprove Obama’s decision on the grounds that American people have suffered enough and now, they should be allowed to see the death of the man responsible for the sufferings. This opinion is very much in tune with our overall social culture and appeal to violence. We are very graphic and visual nation that requires experiencing everything first hand and that specifically relates to violence. Considering this group of people, I believe that releasing the photos to them will be a very bad idea because there are likely to be mishandled. Firstly, it is likely that people who make such demand will not be satisfied to simply see a shot man lying on the ground. It is likely that they will be left wanting more proof and thus will eventually begin to question the official’s integrity. Also, the public is prone to misuse sensitive information and I will not be surprised to find photoshoped pictures of the assassination flowing across the internet portraying various scenes and humoring the act. Such consequences can reflect very negatively on our society as viewed by other countries, and can also bring about social tension.
The next popular comment among the bloggers was an expressed doubt of Obama’s death. Such people would often go a step further to say that the ban on the photographs would simply give power to the conspiracy theory that have been circulating ever since September 11. My response here is that the photographs themselves are not a proof of Osama’s death. We live in an age dominated by constant technological discoveries and advances; therefore, it should be fairly simply to create an image and present it to the public. With this in mind, I believe that even if the pictures were to be release, the people in this group would soon realize the ambiguity and uncertainty surrounding today’s media and thus be left unsatisfied. The final result would, thus, be same regardless of President Obama’s actions.
Among the disagreements, however, there were also many people that expressed support for our President. Many of them expressed views very similar to mine. In addition, I was pleased to read that predominantly in this group people would comment on the immense trust they have in the government and Obama. Such statements were very encouraging given the recent economic crises and all of the flaws in our system which were uncovered during that period. In addition, we need to consider the external consequences that the release of the photos can bring about. As many people accurately stated, America is trying to portray a picture of a just and unprejudiced society in front of the other countries. In order for us to keep our integrity and stance internationally then, our actions need to correspond to our set ideals. Releasing the photographs would only show us a spiteful, blood thirsty and seeking retribution. These observations would surely clash with our true intentions to keep our citizens safe and to spread democracy and equality where possible. Should our image be undermined, then we would lose the respect our foreign partners hold for us, and without respect, there can be no partnership and trust.
The communitarian set of believes is once again the standard I deem most relevant to use in this situation. This topic relates to a personal choice which has an immense public value. Therefore, we need to here think as citizens and members of our community rather than be selfish in our desires and needs. A respected citizen should always act with his civil duty in mind. Here, our civil duty demands from us to trust in our government and our President and to support him in his decision to stand behind America’s ideals.
 
Case 7: Flourishing Person Analysis
 
My class and I, the students of eighth grade in the Math High School in Varna, my home town, entered the spacious room with a little anxiety and hesitation. In the center of the class, on the wooden chair he sat: the two-meters-tall bearded man with the gloomy face.  He examined us very carefully with his strict eyes and told us to take seats. Surprisingly for us, this teacher spoke perfect English in a Bulgarian school, which made me even more intimidated by this strange man. His first statement to us was as follows: “I hate children”. Could I imagine that this teacher would become one of the individuals I would admire the most?
A few months passed and my opinion about this “gloomy” teacher drastically changed. I soon considered Mr. Simeonov to be the most amiable teacher at my school.  His classes passed in very relaxed and friendly atmosphere. He did not only teach me English grammar, but also taught me unforgettable life lessons. Even though he was strict and often sarcastic, we soon realized that his comments were never made out of spite but with the clear intention to give us a realistic view of the real world and to prepare us for the hardships we would soon face. Mr. Simeonov always encouraged me to pursue my dreams and to not be afraid of new experiences and change.
A former chemist, Mr. Simeonov decided to become a teacher of English grammar. He always walked confidently toward the future without looking back and regretting any changes made in his life. He always emphasized the importance of diligence and persistence in achieving one’s goals. Looking at him, I realized that I greatly revered this wise pedagogue and aspired to become like him. In addition to his traits as a teacher and a person, I greatly admired him for his talents. As a true polyglot, he is fluent in French, German, English, Bulgarian, and Russian.  His linguistic gift also lay in his ability to write poems which left me speechless. The words seemed to flow as a waterfall is serenely released from the gentle mountain. The smooth sounds of his guitar and conciliating accords of the magic piano accompanied his verses and filled them with life. I knew that only an expert of real beauty could create such masterpieces. Indeed, the wild perfection of the environment always fascinated him. Mr. Simeonov enjoyed traveling and very often told me about the landscapes he had seen in various countries, such as Bulgaria, Russia, the U.S., Britain, Germany, Israel, etc. This lavishly gifted person was my inspiration in studying languages, singing, dancing, and acting. He was the one who infected me with the love of the beauty of our Planet Earth.
Every one of us has his or her hero, who has left the biggest footprint in our life. This person is our teacher, mentor, advisor, and friend. This person makes us see the world through his or her own eyes. He shows us the value of true virtue. This person entered our life to change it forever. Apparently that glum giant man with the black beard winded up being the enchanting person in my life, and his influence is akin to a tornado pummeling a field of grain. Mr. Simeonov is the person who I admire the most in my life and who I consider a truly flourishing person.

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