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Taylor Ethics Bowl Team Returning to Nationals

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Taylor's Ethics Bowl team

The Taylor University Ethics Bowl team, the National Champion from 2015 and winner of 27 of its last 28 matches, is returning to the National Ethics Bowl Tournament. It marks the seventh straight year an Ethics Bowl team from Taylor has qualified for nationals.

Thirty-two teams from 21 colleges and universities participated in last Saturday’s Central States Ethics Bowl Regional in Indianapolis. Colleges and universities from Arkansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee and Indiana were represented at the event. Taylor’s Team 1, comprised of two seniors, one sophomore, and two freshmen, qualified for the national tournament by finishing third in the field.

According to Dr. James Spiegel, Professor of Philosophy and Religion at Taylor and coach of Taylor’s Ethics Bowl team, both Taylor teams were undefeated in six matches.

Taylor’s Team 1 defeated IPFW (142-133), Heidelberg University (167-120), and Missouri State University (137-122). Taylor’s Team 2 defeated Slippery Rock University (140-128), Marian University (152-142), and Mt. St. Joseph University (150-140).

“In the regional competitions … rankings are determined entirely by scores awarded by judges. This was as dominant a performance as our teams have had at regionals,” said Spiegel. “Not only did our students perform superbly in each of the matches, they were also models of respect and politeness, both toward their opponents and the judges.”

Other schools participating in the Central States regional competition included, Belmont, Butler, DePauw (2nd place), Heidelberg, Indiana (4th place), IPFW, Marian, Missouri State, Mount St. Joseph, Northern Kentucky, Ohio Northern, Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Slippery Rock, Central Arkansas, Louisville, Southern Indiana, Xavier, and Youngstown State (1st place).

Issues debated at the regional Ethics Bowl competition included:

  • Should Apple Corporation have complied with the FBI order to supply anti-encryption software?
  • Are there some topics that comedians should not address? If so, what topics and why?
  • Should an individual's trash be considered private or do environmental concerns warrant public inspection of trash?
  • Should medical professionals comply to Bodily Integrity Identity Disorder patients' requests to have their own body parts damaged or removed?
  • Are U.S. military regulations regarding dress and appearance too restrictive when it comes to religious practice or are there legitimate safety and morale concerns which justify them?
  • Do private citizens have a right to disseminate 3-D gun printing gun design instructions?

Other cases pertained to public nudity, the harvesting of organs from anencephalic babies, and gun control policies on college campuses.

The National Ethics Bowl competition is scheduled for February 26, 2017, in Dallas, Texas. Thirty-six teams will participate.


Taylor University Team 1:

  • Sam Moore (captain), Senior, Philosophy
  • D.J. Benson, Freshman, Pre-major
  • Kiran George, Senior, PPE
  • Caleb Holleman, Sophomore, Math and Philosophy
  • Josie Luptak, Freshman, PPE

Taylor University Team 2:

  • Blair Hedges (captain), Senior, Political Science
  • Tyler Hagen, Senior, Finance
  • Rebekah Hardwicke, Sophomore, Film and Media Production
  • Loyal Juraschek, Junior, CEM, Bib Lit, and Philosophy
  • Caleb Peery, Junior, PPE
  • Jackson Wilcox, Junior, Finance and Accounting

For a complete list of competition rules, guidelines, and cases, visit the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics.