David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Medical Ethics 39 (2):67-74 (2013)
This paper presents arguments for two claims. First, post-persons, beings with a moral status superior to that of mere persons, are possible. Second, it would be bad to create such beings. Actions that risk bringing them into existence should be avoided. According to Allen Buchanan, it is possible to enhance moral status up to the level of personhood. But attempts to improve status beyond that fail for want of a target - there is no category of moral status superior to that of personhood. Buchanan presents personhood as a threshold. He allows that persons may succeed in enhancing their cognitive and physical powers but insists that they cannot enhance their moral status. I argue that it is an implication of accounts that make a cognitive capacity, or collection of such capacities, constitutive of moral status, that those who do not satisfy the criteria for a given status find these criteria impossible to adequately describe. This obstacle notwithstanding, I offer an inductive argument for the existence of moral statuses superior to personhood, moral statuses that are necessarily beyond human expressive powers. The second part of this paper presents an argument that it is wrong to risk producing beings with moral status higher than persons. We should look upon moral status enhancement as creating especially morally needy beings. We are subject to no obligation to create them in the first place. We avoid creating their needs by avoiding creating them
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Benjamin Sachs (2011). The Status of Moral Status. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 92 (1):87-104.
Ori J. Herstein (2012). Defending the Right To Do Wrong. Law and Philosophy 31 (3):343-365.
David DeGrazia (2008). Moral Status as a Matter of Degree? Southern Journal of Philosophy 46 (2):181-198.
Julie Tannenbaum & Agnieszka Jaworska (2013). The Grounds of Moral Status. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Robert Streiffer (2005). At the Edge of Humanity: Human Stem Cells, Chimeras, and Moral Status. Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 15 (4):347-370.
Christopher Grau (2010). Moral Status, Speciesism, and Liao’s Genetic Account. Journal of Moral Philosophy 7 (3):387-96.
Robert Streiffer (2007). At the Edge of Humanity. Journal of Philosophical Research 32 (Supplement):63-83.
Robert P. Lovering (2004). Mary Anne Warren on “Full” Moral Status. Southern Journal of Philosophy 42 (4):509-530.
Thaddeus Metz (2012). An African Theory of Moral Status: A Relational Alternative to Individualism and Holism. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 15 (3):387-402.
Theodore Sider (1995). Sorensen on Unknowable Obligations. Utilitas 7 (02):273-279.
Gregor Damschen & Dieter Schönecker (2006). Saving Seven Embryos or Saving One Child? Michael Sandel on the Moral Status of Human Embryos. Journal of Philosophical Research (Ethics and the Life Sciences):239-245.
Chadwick W. Royal & Stanley B. Baker (2005). Effects of a Deliberate Moral Education Program on Parents of Elementary School Students. Journal of Moral Education 34 (2):215-230.
Thomas L. Carson (2006). The Definition of Lying. Noûs 40 (2):284–306.
Elizabeth Harman (2003). The Potentiality Problem. Philosophical Studies 114 (1-2):173 - 198.
Added to index2012-08-25
Total downloads10 ( #137,947 of 1,096,449 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #231,754 of 1,096,449 )
How can I increase my downloads?