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Intro to Ethics, Nov. 20

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V Igneski

November 20 Abortion: Liberal and Feminist Views Warren: The Personhood Argument in favour of Abortion rights. *Abortion is always permissible - Critique of traditional argument o It is wrong to kill innocent human beings (moral sense). o Fetuses are innocent human beings (biological sense). o Conclusion: it is wrong to kill fetuses (this does not follow), - Let’s look at how ‘human being’ is being used in both premises: o ‘Human beings’ are used in two different ways in the individual premises. o Premise one speaks of human beings in the moral sense – which is not identical to the biological sense of what is a human being, which is the sense ‘human being’ is used in the second premise. o There is a failure to prove whether something genetically human is also morally human.  Moral status of being a person, which gives them personhood rights  Humans belonging to moral community are persons as such  What characteristics do persons have that centralizes personhood in itself - Moral community of Persons: 5 attributes of Personhood o Consciousness and a capacity to feel pain. o Capacity for reasoning, to solve new and relatively complex problems o Persons carry out in self-engaged activity – independent of genetic determination o Capacity to communicate o Presence of self-concept and self-awareness  *not all five are necessary for status of personhood. Probably one and two are necessary. If none of these five are present, the human being is not a person; some human beings are not persons and (vice-versa) some persons are not human beings. - These are important in identifying that not only do persons have moral rights, but also obligations and responsibility. - Only persons have full moral rights, if you are not a person you don’t have no rights whatsoever, but less rights than a person. Is a Fetus Sufficiently Like a Person? Is there a right to life by virtue of its being like a person? - Fetus can feel pain and can ha
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