By Alan Ziegler
In today’s #MeToo world, when a host of claims can surface about an individual’s past misconduct, sexual harassment or abuse of power, it can be difficult to discern the truth. While it’s critical to give victims a voice, and the attention that these long-standing issues deserve, it is also a moral imperative to know the facts before vilifying someone. As we all know, not everything that is stated (or tweeted) is true. Given our nuanced environments and the personal filters through which we view the world, it may not be possible to clearly define “inappropriate conduct” across every situation. Before we rush to judgment, it may be useful to remind ourselves to take a step back and think through today’s issues within a framework of ethics. As discussed in our March board meeting, the Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University has a five-step process that can guide us. We encourage you to read this article and, among other things, get the facts before taking action.