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ethics

Eleven women have told investigators that County Legislator Ernest Flagler-Mitchell sent them inappropriate, sexual, and sometimes graphic messages. Lakaya Sinclair is the only one of those accusers to come forward publicly. She has asked for Monroe County to pass stronger ethics legislation and remove Flagler-Mitchell from his office. For his part, Flagler-Mitchell has not denied sending such messages, but he says it was never inappropriate or predatory.

For the first time, we talk to Lakaya Sinclair about what she experienced, and why she believes government is not being held accountable. We're also joined by CITY Magazine news editor Jeremy Moule, who breaks down the DA's report on the allegations against Flagler-Mitchell. Our guests:

Max Schulte/WXXI News

Rochester Police Locust Club President Michael Mazzeo has filed an ethics complaint against City Council member Mary Lupien, and the city’s ethics board has accepted it.

The complaint stemmed from a mass email Lupien sent on March 11, which included a petition from the nonprofit civil rights and social justice group Color for Change. The petition called for a Department of Justice investigation into potential civil rights violations by the Rochester Police Department.

Have you seen the viral video of a seven-year-old child being knocked nearly unconscious in a youth football practice this week? Have you read stories from Qatar, where brutal conditions led to the deaths of many workers who were building new stadiums for the upcoming World Cup? How do we draw lines on our sports fandom? If you love soccer, is there a moral quandary with watching the World Cup? Ethicist Jake Wojtowicz says yes, but he's struggling with it himself. He loves soccer, enjoys American football, and yet feels the pang of knowing the dark side to these sports.

So what are fans to do? We discuss how we rationalize our fandom and where we should, "No more." Our guest:

  • Jake Wojtowicz, professor of ethics at MCC and writer for PublicEthics.org

We have a discussion about pandemic ethics. University of Rochester Professor Richard Dees joins us to discuss the allocation of resources, the lessons we've learned when it comes to making ethical decisions, and how those lessons can be applied to future health crises. Our guest:

  • Richard Dees, associate professor of philosophy and bioethics, and director of the Program in Bioethics at the University of Rochester

CITY News/File photo

With the integrity of her administration under scrutiny over its handling of the death of Daniel Prude, Mayor Lovely Warren is taking her second stab in four years at giving the city’s ethics watchdog more teeth.

Warren has submitted legislation to the City Council to transform the existing Office of Public Integrity into a new Office of Inspector General. Under the measure, the director would be appointed to a fixed five-year term, have the authority to subpoena records, be barred from engaging in political activity, and could only be fired for malfeasance or misconduct.

Gino Fanelli / CITY Newspaper

A Monroe County legislator is calling for the resignation of Congressman Joe Morelle, alleging that he tried to get her fired from her job.

Legislator Sabrina LaMar, a Democrat who represents the city’s 19th Ward, lodged a complaint against Morelle with the House of Representatives’ Office of Congressional Ethics on Monday. In it, she alleged that Morelle threatened to pull federal funds from the Rochester Institute of Technology if LaMar was not fired.

Would you be offended if you were uninvited to a wedding during the pandemic? Thousands of couples have had to decide whether to postpone their weddings or scale them down dramatically. One couple's reformatted invitation went viral, touching off a debate about pandemic etiquette and the new normal.

Our guests discuss everything from pandemic weddings to internet outrage and public shaming. Our guests:

Retired New York State Assemblyman Rolland Kidder wrote a powerful op-ed, describing his feelings about possibly getting COVID-19. Kidder writes that he's nearly 80 years old, and should not be placed on a ventilator if it could go to a younger patient. Kidder writes that he's had a good life, and is prepared for the possibility that a ventilator might not be available when he needs one.

It's a powerful piece that evokes personal responsibility, ethics, and preparation. He joins us to talk about this difficult subject. Our guest:

Since social distancing orders went into effect, many people throughout the country have turned to take-out dining and grocery delivery services to support restaurants and access the food and supplies they need. For certain groups, these services are necessary to protect their health and safety during the pandemic. Others who are less at risk have asked if their use of services like Instacart unfairly places all the risk on a small group of workers who need the income. They say they want to support people and businesses, but wonder what the moral choice is.

Our guests discuss the issue:

A recent column by CITY Newspaper editor David Andreatta has led to discussions throughout the community about the ethics of using the stimulus checks many people are set to receive from the government. Andreatta writes, “For the millions of workers who have lost their jobs, that extra money will hopefully be put to good use paying rent, mortgages, utility bills, and day-to-day living expenses. But what of the millions of taxpayers like my wife and me who still have our jobs and for whom this aid is found money? How should we use our share? What is the right thing to do? What is the ethical thing to do?”

He joins us to discuss those questions. We’re also joined by local philosophy professors. Our guests:

  • David Andreatta, editor of CITY Newspaper
  • Randy Curren, professor and chair of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Rochester
  • Rosa Terlazzo, associate professor of philosophy at the University of Rochester

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