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I think celebrities, executives of Fortune 500 companies, CFOs, CEOs, and other high-profile or well-known individuals have the right to keep their health to themselves. There are some professions where health of the individual is crucial, for instance, pilots! However, I think the only individual whose health is the general public's right-to-know is, arguably, the President of the U.S. It is not a black-and-white issue, of course...I do not need to know much about the President's physical health unless there is a chronic or life-threatening condition. Steve Job's disclosing his physical health status is his personal choice, and should not be motivated by other's financial gain (or loss).

I think of health in many ways, and it is interesting that we demand to know the health-status of celebrities and executives who may "harm the bottom line" of a company, but their physical health is only one aspect of their overall health picture.

If the health of these well-known individuals is the general public and/or shareholder's right-to-know, then where do we stop in our demand of knowledge:
1. Will the public demand to know the nature of their physical health...and also their mental, emotional, social, relational, sexual, intellectual health as well?
2. Will we then need to know about their family health history (which is often an even greater factor in assessing an individual's future health risk).

The second question is silly, of course, but not too far-fetched if the collective "we" are demanding to know about their health status; irregardless of the "reason"

July 24, 2008 - 1:44pm


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