David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Reproductive Biomedicine Online 10:68-75 (2005)
In this paper the permissibility of stem cell research on early human embryos is defended. It is argued that, in order to have moral status, an individual must have an interest in its own wellbeing. Sentience is a prerequisite for having an interest in avoiding pain, and personhood is a prerequisite for having an interest in the continuation of one's own existence. Early human embryos are not sentient and therefore they are not recipients of direct moral consideration. Early human embryos do not satisfy the requirements for personhood, but there are arguments to the effect that they should be treated as persons nonetheless. These are the arguments from potentiality, symbolic value and the principle of human dignity. These arguments are challenged in this paper and it is claimed that they offer us no good reason to believe that early human embryos should be treated as persons.
|Keywords||persons sentience research ethics|
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Citations of this work BETA
Aaron Rizzieri (2012). Stem Cell Research on Embryonic Persons Is Just. Journal of Bioethical Inquiry (Browse Results) 9 (2):195-203.
Zubin Master & G. K. D. Crozier (2012). The Ethics of Moral Compromise for Stem Cell Research Policy. Health Care Analysis 20 (1):50-65.
Cheryl E. Abbate (2014). Adventures in Moral Consistency: How to Develop an Abortion Ethic Through an Animal Rights Framework. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 18 (1):145-164.
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