Editor's note: This paper was read at the eighth annual University of Dayton Philosophy Colloquium, held in 1979.

We are sometimes tempted to make attributions of collective responsibility to the professions. We say, "The legal profession is responsible for Watergate"; "The medical profession has failed to provide adequate health care in the nation's ghettos"; "Economists are responsible for the appalling ignorance of economics among the general public". Do such claims make sense? Is it ever fair or just to attribute responsibility to a profession? If so, can responsibility be attributed to each and every member of that profession?



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