Critical Thinking: The Actively Sick Essay

1151 words - 5 pages

"Read the Wall Street Journal article "The Actively Sick" and in a short paper (five to six double-spaced pages) apply the 11 steps of the critical thinking model discussed in Asking the Right Questions (2004).Needed for MBA course"Critical Thinking: The Actively SickWhat are the issue and the conclusion?The issue addressed in the editorial comments "The Actively Sick" is a prescriptive one: Should employees who suffer from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or CFS) be covered under Americans with Disability Act (ADA) and whether they have the right to sue their employer for failing to accommodate their illness.Though the author of this article does not provide any concrete conclusion, he clearly opposes the idea of any financial claim based on CFS. He ridicules those with CFS who brings lawsuits against their companies because they were not properly accommodated and claims that they were only taking advantage of their illness, which he thinks is more psychological than physical.What are the reasons?We can paraphrase some of the reasons that authors has given to come to the conclusion that CFS is not a serious disease and people suffering from this disease should not be considered as disable under ADA guidelines:1. Most sensible people would think that - "it's something they might like to sign up for if they just had time to take a long break".2. Most people, who claim that they are suffering from CFS, are ill because of the "reasons that remain mysterious and causes that remain not provable".3. By citing the book "Hystories: Hysterical Epidemics and Modern Media," by Elaine Showalter, author claims that CFS is nothing but a "hysterical disease".4. Finally, author compares Chronic Fatigue Syndrome with another disease "Narcolepsy", which is defined as "chronic neurological disorder caused by the brain's inability to regulate sleep-wake cycles normally" by the National Sleep Foundation ( It is also equally debatable whether people suffering from this disease can be covered under the American with Disability Act.What words or phrases are ambiguous?While looking for possible ambiguity in the issue that author has presented, we found one. Author states, "The constantly tired and unfocused are yet another of the many groups that can sue if companies fail to "accommodate" their condition". What is a "reasonable accommodation"? Clearly depending on the illness of an employee, this will vary significantly. Some examples of such accommodation are:1. Adjustment of work schedule or changing his job assignment so that employee performs his job.2. Providing or modifying any equipment that employee might need to perform his work.3. Allowing the employee to work from home office in case employee is unable to travel.4. Allowing him to take unpaid leave when possible5. Making the workplace accessible or usable by disabled employee.Naturally, one will question how a company will accommodate an employee with Chronic...

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