Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 30 (3):265-289 (2020)

Authors
Stephen John
Cambridge University
Abstract
In many countries and regions across the world, the initial response to the massive health risks posed by COVID-19 has been the institution of lockdown measures. Although they vary from place to place, these measures all involve trade-offs between ethical goods and imperatives, imposing significant restrictions on central human capabilities—including citizens’ ability to work, socialize, exercise democratic rights, and access education—in the name of protecting population health. As such, it seems imperative for philosophers to ask whether lockdown measures are ethical.This is a difficult question. We are deeply uncertain about the possible effects of COVID-19 and of lockdown policies, raising questions about...
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DOI 10.1353/ken.2020.0015
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