what do you believe is the relationship, if any, between “fair” and “law”?

1. After reading the required reading for week one, what do you believe is the relationship, if any, between “fair” and “law”? Does one influence the other? Does public opinion play a role in how the courts (especially the U.S. Supreme Court) interpret the law? If so, does public opinion help employers predict how the law may or may not change? Explain.


2.  According to Reed, Pagattaro, Cahoy, Shedd, and Magid (2015), there are some significant differences between civil and criminal law that are critical to an understanding of the roles and functions of law, especially as they relate to this course. The civil law to which I refer is different from the civil law legal system, which is one of the two great law “families” or classifications of legal systems.

What is the Civil Law System? What is the primary distinction between common law and civil law legal systems? Why is the United States a “common law country”?



Reed, O.L., Pagattaro, M.A., Cahoy, D.R., Shedd, P.J., & Magid, J.M. (2015). The legal and regulatory environment of business (17th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.


3. Please explain how whistle blowing is “very unethical and a  good indication of a bad worker such as trust or dedication to the company”.  Is this your opinion of Sherron Watkins, the employee that blew the whistle at Enron? According to Halbert and Ingulli (2012), Sherron Watkins, the Enron corporate whistle blower is the prototype for such whistleblowers, taking her concerns “up the hierarchy” reporting her superiors instead of to the government or the media. The question raised about her method of blowing the whistle is that it is a difficult position for a corporate insider “who chooses to blow the whistle and asks whether SOX, which is the federal law designed to prevent future Enrons, adequately addresses the quandary of employees like Sherron Watkins” (Ch. 2). Do you believe there is a legitimate concern about the “quandary of employees like Sherron Watkins”? What would you have done if you were in a situation similar to Ms. Watkins?



Halbert, J.D., T. & Ingulli, J.D., LL.M. E. (2012). Law & ethics in the business environment (7th ed.) New York: Cengage Learning, Co.


4. In this learning activity, the research director of PharmCo, a midsize pharmaceutical company, tells top management of an important new discovery. After years of effort, one of the company’s research teams has discovered a drug that will reverse pattern baldness, the leading cause of male hair loss. The potential for profit from such a drug is enormous, but the director cautions that two of the eight principal researchers on the team believe that the drug may also increase the possibility of potentially fatal cerebral aneurysms in a very tiny percentage of users.

Using the text, chapter 2 of Reed, Pagattaro, Cahoy, Shedd, and Magid (2015), how would you respond to the following?

  • If follow-up animal studies of the new drug do not show significant side effects, would it be ethical for the company to tell the two researchers to keep quiet about their concerns?
  • Is it ethical to put animals at risk to test the drug’s safety?

Many poor men in the world will be unable to afford the new drug if PharmCo sets the price too high.

  • Is it morally right for PharmCo to maximize its profit even if it means that many men will have to remain bald?
  • Does your answer change if the drug cures rheumatoid arthritis? AIDS?


Reed, O.L., Pagattaro, M.A., Cahoy, D.R., Shedd, P.J., & Magid, J.M. (2015). The legal and regulatory environment of business (17th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.


5. You have spent the past four weeks away from work serving as a juror in a case deciding whether a pharmaceutical company should be held liable for the heart attack of a woman who took its painkiller, Oxxy-1. The lengthy case has taken a toll on your professional career, and you have many unanswered questions as jury deliberations begin (Reed, Pagattaro, Cahoy, Shedd, & Magid, 2015).

  • Where does your duty lie in serving on a jury?
  • Are you protected against adverse employment action by your firm for missing work to serve on a jury?
  • How do you reconcile the woman’s prior heart palpitations from years ago with her recent attack? Was her heart already compromised before she began taking the painkiller Oxxy-1?
  • Why didn’t the pharmaceutical company withdraw the painkiller from the market at the first sign of a problem?
  • How does our court system protect the rights of society and business?
  • Is the case on which you are serving as a juror being adjudicated in a state court or in a federal court? How do you determine which cases fall under the jurisdiction of the federal courts, and which cases should be heard by state courts?

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