This APA style questionnaire includes various samples of questions and answer from psychology papers by Ultius. It examines questions, answers, and comparisons regarding moral behaviors of human beings on a wide-range of psychological topics. This questionnaire includes topics ranging from abuse, eating disorders, and euthanasia to gay rights, peer acceptance, and prostitution.
Identify and explain the four phases of the cycle of abuse
As a phenomenon, abusive relationships naturally give rise to the question of why those in them don’t leave. The answer to this question lies in understanding the four phases of the cycle of abuse; abuse is not (or at least, is very rarely) “static”—that is to say, abusers are not abusing their victims every waking moment of their lives, and those times where abuse is not active are times where the victims tend to rationalize the relationship, or at least moments of relative peace which add value to the relationship.
The first phase of the cycle is “tension building.” This phase is absent of acute violence, but “manifests itself through passive aggression, the facilitation of distance on the part of the abuser towards the abused, and the establishment of a nervous, tense, and agitated state within the romantic relationship” (Laws, 2016, Sec 2). The second phase is the incident of abuse itself, i.e., the acute expression of violence (whether physical, emotional, sexual, etc.), as a culmination and pinnacle of the tension build up which preceded it. Next is the reconciliation phase, where the abuser apologizes—often insincerely, as a self-relevant pragmatic gesture—and regains the trust of the abused. This is followed by the calm phase which appears as a restoration of order, but which tills the ground for the cycle to repeat as tension builds up again.
Lenore Walker is responsible for advancing this schema by which to understand the cycle of violence. This theoretical model was derived after she found this similar pattern in fifteen hundred battered women she interviewed, so it is relatively evidence based (Fisher and Lab, 2010). The problem is not only local to a particular relationship, but can often be generational, with the best hope of respite coming from a stable, safe, and nurturing relationship which can break the cycle (Jaffee, et al., 2016).
Discuss the controversy surrounding the genital HPV vaccine
Include at least four anti-vaccine arguments and four pro-vaccine arguments. HPV is the most commonly sexually transmitted infection for men and women, with over six million cases per year (White, 2014). As such, one argument in favor of the vaccines is simply that it effects so many people that it’s better to get the vaccine for the general public, even if there are some risks, although the CDC claims that there are none (CDC, 2017).
Another argument in favor of it is that coverage is currently low, and it should be higher (White, 2014). Further, “for females, the risk of cervical cancer and the potential for prevention of this devastating disease served as the impetus for widespread adoption of the vaccine” (White, Sec 2). And fourthly, the argument in favor of the HPV vaccines is that they are being used more despite the fact that they are not used that often, because the sale of Gardasil has been increasing over the years which helps fund the Vaccine companies so they can make better and more vaccines (White, 2014).
There are several arguments against the HPV vaccines. What is probably the most significant of these involves the risks attached to the vaccine, due to concerns that they outweigh the benefits; for instance, adverse reactions in Japan were so significant that the Japanese government suspended the vaccine (Nicol et al., 2016). A second concern (and which is related to the first) is that there is not yet enough evidence to support it as being safe, given the relatively high amount of adverse reactions and the very nuanced conditions under which it should be administered.
Thirdly and fourthly there are some ethical concerns. One of the ethical concerns is that by vaccinating, parents are approving of the sexual decisions of their children (due to the fact that vaccination is recommended in the pre-teen, pre-sexual point in the lifespan), it being believed by some that if a parent gets their child vaccinated, they are condoning whatever sexual decisions they are going to be making in the next few years (White, 2014). And the other ethical concern is the fear that if a parent gets the vaccine for their child, and then an adverse effect occurs, the parent has morally failed to provide for the child.
What was the Stonewall riot and why is it seen as important in the history of the gay rights movement
In 1969 among the backdrop of the civil rights and feminist movements, a gay bar in New York called The Stonewall Inn was a sort of LGBT headquarters; accounts of the establishment range considerably from being described memorably as a “de facto community center for gay youth rendered homeless” to more grimly as a “gathering place for young gay men, lesbians, and transgender people… a dark, seedy, crowded bar… operating without a liquor license (Franke-Ruta, 2013 para 3; Britannica, 2017 Sec 1).”
Whatever the case, the bar was a regular object of law enforcement’s ire and in 1969 police officers arrested employees for selling alcohol without a license, cleared the bar, roughed up some patrons, and also arrested those who broke the New York statute which required at least three articles of gender appropriate clothing. Though usually the bars occupants did not resist this type of treatment, this time they did, and became “widely hailed as the catalyst for the modern movement for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights” (Stack, para 1, 2017).
The event most definitely did serve as a catalyst of sorts. Given the historical context—civil rights, feminism, etc.—there had not yet been the sort of blatant and vociferous social disobedience expressed by sexual minorities the way that the world had just witnessed racial minorities do the same. The Stonewall riots of the LGBT rights movement were, in a manner of speaking, analogous to Rosa Parks on the bus, or other seminal civil rights moments where a minority class stood up against the local authorities. It provided the world with
a very gay variant of the classic New York Street Rebellion… fire hoses turned on people in the street, thrown barricades, the throwing of a firebomb into the bar, a police officer throwing his gun at the mob, cries of ‘occupy—take over, take over,’ ‘fag power,’ liberate the bar!’, and ‘we’re the pink panthers! (Franke-Ruta, para 7).
Discuss the debate over legalization and decriminalization of prostitution
The arguments in favor of legalizing or decriminalizing prostitution are multiple. In general, the legalization or decriminalization of it is justified in a similar way to the legal sale and use of marijuana or alcohol: it’s something that people will do anyways, so it only makes sense to make it safe and profitable (Fuchs, 2013). It would (so the argument goes) allow sex workers to organize, be regulated, etc., all resulting in decreases of sexual violence, diseases, and other negative pragmatics associated with prostitution.
Decriminalization itself is often not viewed as a solution, but simply a stepping stone toward the real solution, which is legalization, under which sex workers would also be able to have labor laws apply (Leigh, 2012). Against the idea of legalized prostitution is ultimately a moral one. As Mrozek puts it, “The legalization of the buying of bodies, waters the very worst kind of seeds” (para 6). Legalized prostitution aids the legitimacy of objectification, self-indulgence, etc.
How would a social learning theorist describe the acquisition of moral behavior?
Social learning theory, as developed by thinkers like Vygotsky, holds that individual development results from perceiving, internalizing, imitating, etc. the behaviors and values of others. Our environments—composed of parents, teachers, authorities, siblings, etc.—are powerful tools by which we come to understand what behavior means and what actions, attitudes, beliefs, etc. are important.
This being the case, a social learning theorist would see the acquisition of moral behavior as ultimately no different from the acquisition of any other behavioral item. Or, as Rushton (1982) puts it, “thus, from the social learning perspective… judgments reflect cognitive rules that have been learned via the same processes as other behaviors (i.e., through the laws of learning)” (p. 467). Various models of moral judgment, like Kohlberg’s, reflect this process and this understanding of moral development, in the sense that as a person becomes more sensitive to the moral rules which their environment enforces, they become more (or less, environmentally depending) likely to fulfill them.
In behavioral terms, the acquisition looks something like this. A child is in environment a, and in that environment, b is viewed as morally meritorious. As the child observes people doing b and sees how the society reacts to it, the child learns to view and value b as socially meaningful and important. As a result, throughout development, the child learns that b is “good” for all intents and purposes, and will then do b, first out of self-interest, next out of deference to social norms, and ultimately because of the internalization of b as good effectively being controvertible with a personal moral principle, the foundation of which is very firm.
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How does peer acceptance influence behavior?
Related to the topic of social learning is the phenomenon of peer acceptance and how it influences behavior. In general, human behavior is such that we seek acceptance by our peers and incorporation into their groups. This helps to promote personal and group identity, which helps to cultivate confidence, self-esteem, and general feelings of positive wellbeing.
At a more primitive level, this type of group-incorporating behavior can be seen from an earlier age in the way that small children imitate their parents and those in their immediate environment. However, the concept of peer behavior becomes especially salient as children grow and enter adolescence. In particular, “it is well established that adolescents are more likely than children or adults to take risks,” and this risk taking-behavior is seen as inextricable from the phenomenon of peer pressure (Albert, Chein & Steinberg, 2013, p. 19). Research papers on adolescent behavior has indicated that the primary contextual factor in making risky decisions is peer influence.
A variety of theoretical models have been proposed to help better understand exactly what peer influence does as a mechanism, from identifying the immature and still developing neural components of the adolescent mind which give way to poor decisions and impulse control, to a general lack of experience. However, what is present across the board is the fact that behavior is a risk-reward proposition, and peer influence is a social reward.
Social rewards (i.e., being esteemed by one’s group, with whom one shares an identity) are very punctuated and motivating for all types of behavior. Even in non-adolescent demographics social rewards are salient (e.g. business recognition, military recognition, sports recognition, etc.), but particularly in adolescent demographics when decision making apparatuses are not yet fully developed, social rewards can make a bad decision seem like a good one.
Compare and contrast anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa
Both anorexia nervosa and bulimia are eating disorders. The main distinction between them is the actual manifestation of the eating disorder. In the case of anorexia, the person’s unhealthy behavior is owed to a significant decrease in food intake. In bulimia, food intake is accelerated and abundant (i.e., “binge eating”) but is followed quickly by some method to avoid the actual weight gain such as self-induced vomiting (i.e., purging).
While these two disorders involve different activities, they are both aimed at a similar end and are contributed to by very similar psychological conditions and attitudes. While these two disorders both have serious physical side effects, including the risk of death, these physical effects are better viewed as symptoms of what is primarily a psychological problem, just as we would view self-harming behavior and suicide as outcomes of a primarily psychological problem.
In both cases (of anorexia and bulimia) the psychological problem can be reduced to anxiety, depression, and mental pressure regarding one’s body-image. Body image is a component of self-esteem, and is particularly important in women due to the social pressures and norms proliferated and perpetuated in media ideals of physical beauty. In the case of those with anorexia and bulimia, “different patterns of association between pathological eating concerns/behaviors and the performance of decision-making ability” are present (Matsumoto et al., 2015, par. 4).
In other words, those who suffer from these disorders are especially anxious about their appearance and the weight-avoidance methods (of either self-starvation or binge/purge behavior) are viewed as tactics to quell those anxieties and bring about an ideal self-image.
Compare passive euthanasia, active euthanasia, and assisted suicide with brief examples
Passive euthanasia is defined by Olde Scheper and Duursma (1994) as being when “a physician may choose not to treat an intercurrent disease or event in a patient with a terminal progressive disease” (p. 4). In other words, it’s when a person for whom death is imminent is simply “allowed to die.” An example of this would be DNR orders, where a patient (or their power of attorney) decides to forego life-saving measures in a situation where death would occur without it.
Active euthanasia is defined by the authors as being when “a physician may administer a large dose of a drug, which would be fatal in a patient in a terminal state of a severe and hopeless disease” (Olde Scheper & Duursma, 1994, p. 4). Though it needn’t necessarily be a “large” amount, the point is simply that the physician posits a positive administration of some drug or chemical which will kill the patient as an act of mercy. An example of this would be the administration of any drug for the purposes of ending the patient’s life.
Assisted suicide is when “a physician may provide drugs to a patient with a terminal disease and the patient causes his or her own death by taking an overdose of these” (p. 4). Again, the definition needn’t necessarily be that literal. For example, it needn’t even be a physician; in theory, the same terminally ill patient might request from a relative or family member that they shoot them in the head or perform some other definitively life ending act.
Albert, D., Chein, J., & Steinberg, L. (2013). Peer influences on adolescent decision making. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 22(2), 114–120. http://doi.org/10.1177/0963721412471347
Fisher, B.S. & Lab, S.P. (2010). Encyclopedia of Victimology and Crime Prevention. Sage: USA. Retrieved from https://books.google.com/books?id=dVJ2AwAAQBAJ
Franke-Ruta, G. (2013). An amazing 1969 account of the Stonewall Uprising. The Atlantic. Retrieved from https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/01/an-amazing-1969-account-of-the-stonewall-uprising/272467/
Frequently Asked Questions about HPV Vaccine Safety. (2017). CDC. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/vaccines/hpv/hpv-safety-faqs.html
Fuchs, E. (2013). Seven Reasons why American Should Legalize Prostitution. Business Insider. Retrieved from http://www.businessinsider.com/why-america-should-legalize-prostitution-2013-11
Guide to Understand the Cycle of Abuse. (2016). LAWS. Retrieved from https://domestic-violence.laws.com/cycle-of-abuse
Jaffee, S.R., et al. (2016). Safe, Stable, Nurturing Relationships Break the Intergenerational Cycle of Abuse: A Prospective Nationally Representative Cohort of Children in the United Kingdom. Journal of Adolescent Health, 53 (4), pp. s4-s10. Retrieved from http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1054139X13002449
Matsumoto, J., Hirano, Y., Numata, N., Matzuzawa, D., Murano, S., Yokote, K., … Nakazato, M. (2015). Comparison in decision-making between bulimia nervosa, anorexia nervosa, and healthy women: Influence of mood status and pathological eating concerns. Journal of Eating Disorders, 3, 14. http://doi.org/10.1186/s40337-015-0050-6
Leigh, C. (2012). Labor laws, not criminal laws, are the solution to prostitution. New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2012/04/19/is-legalized-prostitution-safer/labor-laws-not-criminal-laws-are-the-solution-to-prostitution
Mrozek, A. (2013). Why I’m against Legalizing Prostitution. Huff Post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/andrea-mrozek/legal-prostitution-canada_b_4481700.html
Nicol AF, Andrade CV, Russomano FB, Rodrigues LLS, Oliveira NS, Provance DW. HPV vaccines: a controversial issue? Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research. 2016;49(5):e5060. doi:10.1590/1414-431X20155060.
Olde Scheper, T.M.J.J. & Duursma, S.A. (1994). Euthanasia: The Dutch Experience. Age and Ageing (23) 3, pp. 3-8. Retrieved from https://academic.oup.com/ageing/article-abstract/23/1/3/35490
Rushton, J. P. (1982). Moral cognition, behaviorism, and social learning theory. Ethics, 92, 459-467. Retrieved from http://philipperushton.net/?page_id=7
Stack, L. (2017). New York’s L.G.B.T.Q. Story Began Well before Stonewall. New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/19/us/gay-pride-lgbtq-new-york-before-stonewall.html?rref=collection%2Ftimestopic%2FStonewall%20Rebellion&action=click&contentCollection=timestopics®ion=stream&module=stream_unit&version=latest&contentPlacement=3&pgtype=collection
Stonewall Riots. (2017). Britannica. Retrieved from https://www.britannica.com/event/Stonewall-riots
White, M. D. (2014). Pros, cons, and ethics of HPV vaccine in teens—Why such controversy? Translational Andrology and Urology, 3(4), 429–434. http://doi.org/10.3978/j.issn.2223-4683.2014.11.02