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Archbishop says journalists blinded by medical science

Medical breakthroughs are not always respectful of human life, and journalists should say so, warned Archbishop John P. Foley, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, at an international conference on Health and Power.

Archbishop Foley was speaking on Friday to the Pontifical Council for Health Care Workers-organised gathering in the Vatican that included scientists, doctors, theologians, specialists and university professors.

Stressing the need to "have journalists who are prepared not only in medical technology, but also in moral philosophy," he said the media have not always respected the inviolable and inalienable rights of the weak in the womb or near the tomb.

Journalists must understand that "not every technological breakthrough is necessarily a moral triumph; thus, do readers the favor of subjecting technological advances to valid moral criticism," the archbishop said.

He reminded his audience "that the media in the mid-20th century were not afraid to identify certain forms of medical experimentation as atrocities."

Perhaps, the archbishop said, "such reporting was made easier because the experiments were often sponsored by hostile powers on helpless prisoners of war or on innocent civilians kept in concentration camps."

Arcbhishop Foley's Address on Media and Bioethics