David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Bioethics 23 (5):274-290 (2009)
According to what we call the Principle of Procreative Beneficence (PB), couples who decide to have a child have a significant moral reason to select the child who, given his or her genetic endowment, can be expected to enjoy the most well-being. In the first part of this paper, we introduce PB, explain its content, grounds, and implications, and defend it against various objections. In the second part, we argue that PB is superior to competing principles of procreative selection such as that of procreative autonomy. In the third part of the paper, we consider the relation between PB and <span class='Hi'>disability</span>. We develop a revisionary account of <span class='Hi'>disability</span>, in which <span class='Hi'>disability</span> is a species of instrumental badness that is context- and person-relative. Although PB instructs us to aim to reduce <span class='Hi'>disability</span> in future children whenever possible, it does not privilege the normal. What matters is not whether future children meet certain biological or statistical norms, but what level of well-being they can be expected to have.
|Keywords||procreative beneficence reproduction genetic selection enhancement autonomy well‐being ethics|
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Citations of this work BETA
Robert Sparrow (2015). Imposing Genetic Diversity. American Journal of Bioethics 15 (6):2-10.
J. Savulescu (2015). Bioethics: Why Philosophy is Essential for Progress. Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (1):28-33.
Janet Malek & Judith Daar (2012). The Case for a Parental Duty to Use Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis for Medical Benefit. American Journal of Bioethics 12 (4):3-11.
Tony Hope & John McMillan (2012). Physicians' Duties and the Non-Identity Problem. American Journal of Bioethics 12 (8):21 - 29.
Chris Gyngell (2012). Enhancing the Species: Genetic Engineering Technologies and Human Persistence. Philosophy and Technology 25 (4):495-512.
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