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  1. Contraception and Abortion: A Utilitarian View.Leslie Allan - manuscript
    Conservative and liberal approaches to the problem of abortion are oversimplified and deeply flawed. Accepting that the moral status of the conceptus changes during gestation, the author advances a more nuanced perspective. Through applying a form of rules in practice utilitarianism within the context of overall population policy, he provides a compelling ethical and legal framework for regulating contraception and abortion practices.
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  2. Does the Lack of Cosmic Meaning Make Our Lives Bad?Thaddeus Metz - forthcoming - Journal of Value Inquiry.
    This article is part of a special issue devoted to David Benatar’s anti-natalism. There are places in his oeuvre where he contends that, while our lives might be able to exhibit some terrestrial or human meaning, that is not enough to make them worth creating, which would require a cosmic meaning that is unavailable to us. There are those who maintain, in reply to Benatar, that some of our lives do have a cosmic meaning, but I grant Benatar here that (...)
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  3. The Beginning of Life Issues: An Islamic Perspective.Piyali Mitra - forthcoming - Journal of Religion and Health.
    Islam gives legal precedence to purity of lineage and known parenthood of all children. In Islam treatment to infertility using IVF is permitted within validity of marriage contract with no genes mixing. The paper shows that the Qur’ān, the word of Allah, and science, the deeds of Allah are not in major conflicts in defining the start of human life. The Holy Qur’ān provides an elegant description of origin, developmental stages of intra-uterine life. The Hadith explains two positions one that (...)
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  4. The Complex Case of Ellie Anderson.Joona Räsänen & Anna Smajdor - forthcoming - Journal of Medical Ethics:medethics-2020-106998.
    Ellie Anderson had always known that she wanted to have children. Her mother, Louise, was aware of this wish. Ellie was designated male at birth, but according to news sources, identified as a girl from the age of three. She was hoping to undergo gender reassignment surgery at 18, but died unexpectedly at only 16, leaving Louise grappling not only with the grief of losing her daughter, but with a complex legal problem. Ellie had had her sperm frozen before starting (...)
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  5. The Procreative Asymmetry and the Impossibility of Elusive Permission.Jack Spencer - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies.
    This paper develops a form of moral actualism that can explain the procreative asymmetry. Along the way, it defends and explains the attractive asymmetry: the claim that although an impermissible option can be self-conditionally permissible, a permissible option cannot be self-conditionally impermissible.
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  6. A Theodicy for Artificial Universes: Moral Considerations on Simulation Hypotheses.Stefano Gualeni - 2021 - International Journal of Technoethics 12 (1):21-31.
    ‘Simulation Hypotheses’ are imaginative scenarios that are typically employed in philosophy to speculate on how likely it is that we are currently living within a simulated universe as well as on our possibility for ever discerning whether we do in fact inhabit one. These philosophical questions in particular overshadowed other aspects and potential uses of simulation hypotheses, some of which are foregrounded in this article. More specifically, “A Theodicy for Artificial Universes” focuses on the moral implications of simulation hypotheses with (...)
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  7. Kantian Approaches to Human Reproduction: Both Favorable and Unfavorable.Lantz Fleming Miller - 2021 - Kantian Journal 40 (1):51-96.
    Recent years have seen a surge of interest in the question of whether humans should reproduce. Some say human life is too punishing and cruel to impose upon an innocent. Others hold that such harms do not undermine the great and possibly unique value of human life. Tracing these outlooks historically in the debate has barely begun. What might philosophers have said, or what did they say, about human life itself and its value to merit reproduction? This article looks to (...)
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  8. Transhumanism, in vitro fertilization and woman dignity.Carlos Alberto Rosas Jimenez - 2020 - In Diana Stephania Muñoz-Gomez (ed.), La persona: on-off Desafíos de la familia en la cuarta revolución industrial. Bogotá, Colombia: pp. 304-317.
    Transhumanism is a movement that seeks to transcend certain limits inherent in the human condition as we know it. However, does it justify leaving aside the dignity of current human beings to fulfill the desire to increase human potential and improve the human being as such to obtain other human beings? Does it justify passing over the dignity of women in order to obtain new human beings through fertilization? To answer these questions we have made a sweep over the ideas (...)
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  9. What Is the Question to Which Anti-Natalism Is the Answer?Nicholas Smyth - 2020 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 23 (1):1-17.
    The ethics of biological procreation has received a great deal of attention in recent years. Yet, as I show in this paper, much of what has come to be called procreative ethics is conducted in a strangely abstract, impersonal mode, one which stands little chance of speaking to the practical perspectives of any prospective parent. In short, the field appears to be flirting with a strange sort of practical irrelevance, wherein its verdicts are answers to questions that no-one is asking. (...)
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  10. The Problem of Spontaneous Abortion: Is the Pro-Life Position Morally Monstrous?Bruce P. Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2019 - The New Bioethics 25 (2):103-120.
    A substantial proportion of human embryos spontaneously abort soon after conception, and ethicists have argued this is problematic for the pro-life view that a human embryo has the same moral status as an adult from conception. Firstly, if human embryos are our moral equals, this entails spontaneous abortion is one of humanity’s most important problems, and it is claimed this is absurd, and a reductio of the moral status claim. Secondly, it is claimed that pro-life advocates do not act as (...)
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  11. Wronging Future Children.K. Lindsey Chambers - 2019 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 6.
    The dominant framework for addressing procreative ethics has revolved around the notion of harm, largely due to Derek Parfit’s famous non-identity problem. Focusing exclusively on the question of harm treats what procreators owe their offspring as akin to what they would owe strangers (if they owe them anything at all). Procreators, however, usually expect (and are expected) to parent the persons they create, so we cannot understand what procreators owe their offspring without also appealing to their role as prospective parents. (...)
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  12. The Challenge for Medical Ethicists: Weighing Pros and Cons of Advanced Reproductive Technologies to Screen Human Embryos During IVF.Inmaculada de Melo-Martin - 2019 - In E. Scott Sills & Gianpiero D. Palermo (eds.), Human Embryos and Preimplantation Genetic Technologies. San Diego, CA, USA: Elsevier. pp. 1-10.
    Embryo screening technologies offer important benefits to individuals who use them and society. These techniques can expand the reproductive options of many prospective parents and can contribute to reducing the burdens of disease and disability. Nonetheless, embryo screening techniques present individuals and societies with important ethical challenges. Here, I explore some of them. In particular, I discuss the costs for prospective parents of increased reproductive choices, as well as concerns about sanctioning problematic social norms, increasing social injustice, limiting the ways (...)
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  13. Toward a Small Family Ethic: How Overpopulation and Climate Change Are Affecting the Morality of Procreation by Travis Rieder.Trevor Hedberg - 2019 - Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 28 (4):8-13.
    Travis Rieder's Toward a Small Family Ethic confronts the effects of population growth and addresses what individual procreative obligations might follow from it. In this review, I summarize the main arguments that Rieder deploys to defend his position that those with large ecological footprints morally ought to follow a small family ethic. I express sympathy with some of his claims and praise the book's accessibility, but its short length inevitably means that some important issues are omitted or given only superficial (...)
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  14. The Duty to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions and the Limits of Permissible Procreation.Trevor Hedberg - 2019 - Essays in Philosophy 20 (1):42-65.
    Many environmental philosophers have argued that there is an obligation for individuals to reduce their individual carbon footprints. However, few of them have addressed whether this obligation would entail a corresponding duty to limit one’s family size. In this paper, I examine several reasons that one might view procreative acts as an exception to a more general duty to reduce one’s individual greenhouse gas emissions. I conclude that none of these reasons are convincing. Thus, if there is an obligation to (...)
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  15. 人生は創造する価値がありますか?.Thaddeus Metz - 2019 - Gendai-Shiso 47 (14):94-113.
    Translation of 'Are Lives Worth Creating?' into Japanese by Sho Yamaguchi. A critical discussion of Benatar's anti-natalism that originally appeared in Philosophical Papers (2011).
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  16. “Ethical Minefields” and the Voice of Common Sense: A Discussion with Julian Savulescu.Julian Savulescu & Evangelos D. Protopapadakis - 2019 - Conatus - Journal of Philosophy 4 (1):125-133.
    Theoretical ethics includes both metaethics (the meaning of moral terms) and normative ethics (ethical theories and principles). Practical ethics involves making decisions about every day real ethical problems, like decisions about euthanasia, what we should eat, climate change, treatment of animals, and how we should live. It utilizes ethical theories, like utilitarianism and Kantianism, and principles, but more broadly a process of reflective equilibrium and consistency to decide how to act and be.
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  17. Procreative-Parenting, Love's Reasons and the Demands of Morality.Luara Ferracioli - 2018 - Philosophical Quarterly 68 (270):77-97.
    Many philosophers believe that the relationship between a parent and a child is objectively valuable, but few believe that there is any objective value in first creating a child in order to parent her. But if it is indeed true that all of the objective value of procreative-parenting comes from parenting, then it is hard to see how procreative-parenting can overcome two particularly pressing philosophical challenges. A first challenge is to show that it is morally permissible for prospective parents to (...)
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  18. How Procreation Generates Parental Rights and Obligations.Michael Cholbi - 2017 - In Michael Cholbi & Jaime Ahlberg (eds.), Procreation, Parenthood, and Educational Rights: Ethical and Philosophical Issues. Routledge.
    Philosophical defenses of parents’ rights typically appeal to the interests of parents, the interests of children, or some combination of these. Here I propose that at least in the case of biological, non-adoptive parents, these rights have a different normative basis: namely, these rights should be accorded to biological parents because of the compensatory duties such parents owe their children by virtue of having brought them into existence. Inspried by Seana Shiffrin, I argue that procreation inevitably encumbers the wills of (...)
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  19. Review of Françoise Baylis and Carolyn McLeod, Eds.: Family-Making: Contemporary Ethical Challenges: Oxford University Press, New York, 2014. [REVIEW]Inmaculada de Melo-Martín - 2017 - Monash Bioethics Review 34 (3-4):239-242.
  20. A Portable Defense of the Procreation Asymmetry.Jake Earl - 2017 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 47 (2-3):178-199.
    The Procreation Asymmetry holds that we have strong moral reasons not to create miserable people for their own sakes, but no moral reasons to create happy people for their own sakes. To defend this conjunction against an argument that it leads to inconsistency, I show how recognizing ‘creation’ as a temporally extended process allows us to revise the conjuncts in a way that preserves their intuitive force. This defense of the Procreation Asymmetry is preferable to others because it does not (...)
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  21. On the Strength of the Reason Against Harming.Molly Gardner - 2017 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 14 (1):73-87.
    _ Source: _Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 73 - 87 According to action-relative accounts of harming, an action harms someone only if it makes her worse off in some respect than she would have been, had the action not been performed. Action-relative accounts can be contrasted with effect-relative accounts, which hold that an action may harm an individual in virtue of its effects on that individual, regardless of whether the individual would have been better off in the absence of the (...)
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  22. One Child: Do We Have a Right to Have More? By Sarah Conly. [REVIEW]Trevor Hedberg - 2017 - Philosophy East and West 67 (3):934-938.
    Sarah Conly's One Child is a substantive treatment of the extent to which procreative freedom is curtailed by rising global population and the environmental problems to which it contributes. This review provides an overview of the book's content and closes with a few critical remarks. The book is highly recommended for those interested in the intersection between environmental ethics and the ethics of procreation.
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  23. Debating Procreation: Is It Wrong to Reproduce. [REVIEW]Asha Lancaster-Thomas - 2017 - Metapsychology Online Reviews 21.
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  24. The Medical Nonnecessity of In Vitro Fertilization.Carolyn McLeod - 2017 - International Journal of Feminist Approaches to Bioethics 10 (1):78-102.
    Whether in vitro fertilization is medically necessary determines, in many jurisdictions, whether it ought to be funded through public health insurance. This is certainly the case in Canada, where the Canada Health Act requires that provinces pay for all medically necessary health care services. Debate raged recently in Ontario, my own province, over whether IVF should be deemed medically necessary and therefore covered under Ontario’s Health Insurance Plan. Advocates for public funding insisted that Ontario, along with most other provinces in (...)
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  25. No Longer as Free as the Wind: Human Reproduction and Parenting Enter the Scope of Morality; Review Essay.Lantz Miller - 2017 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 20 (3):657-664.
    Camus considered the most crucial philosophical problem to be that of suicide—whether to discontinue your existence by endingit. Alternatively, a most crucial philosophical problem may be procreation—whether to continue human existence by making new humans. The topic has spurred an increasing amount of debate over the past decade, with marked diversion with Anscomb’s comment that it makes no moral sense to inquire whether one should reproduce. One might as well ask why digest food or why should the wind blow. This (...)
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  26. Genetic Affinity and the Right to ‘Three-Parent IVF’.G. Owen Schaefer & Markus Labude - 2017 - Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics 34 (12):1577-1580.
    With the recent report of a live birth after use of Mitochondrial replacement therapy, sometimes called ‘Three-parent IVF’, the clinical application of the technique is fast becoming a reality. While the United Kingdom allows the procedure under regulatory scrutiny, it remains effectively outlawed in many other countries. We argue that such prohibitions may violate individuals’ procreative rights, grounded in individuals’ interest in genetic affinity. The interest in genetic affinity was recently endorsed by Singapore’s highest court, reflecting an emphasis on the (...)
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  27. The Saving/Creating Distinction and the Axiology of the Cost–Benefit Approach to Neonatal Medicine.Tomasz Żuradzki - 2017 - American Journal of Bioethics 17 (8):29-31.
    The aim of this commentary is to discuss the axiology of the cost–benefit approach assumed by Travis Rieder (2017) to analyze medical decision making in the case of extremely preterm infants.
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  28. Procreation, Parenthood, and Educational Rights: Ethical and Philosophical Issues.Jaime Ahlberg - 2016 - Routledge.
    _Procreation, Parenthood, and Educational Rights_ explores important issues at the nexus of two burgeoning areas within moral and social philosophy: procreative ethics and parental rights. Surprisingly, there has been comparatively little scholarly engagement across these subdisciplinary boundaries, despite the fact that parental rights are paradigmatically ascribed to individuals responsible for procreating particular children. This collection thus aims to bring expert practitioners from these literatures into fruitful and innovative dialogue around questions at the intersection of procreation and parenthood. Among these questions (...)
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  29. Procreation and Projects.Elizabeth Brake - 2016 - The Philosophers' Magazine 75:89-94.
    A short essay for a general readership on the morality of procreation.
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  30. Well-Being and the Non-Identity Problem.Molly Gardner - 2016 - In Guy Fletcher (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Well-Being. Routledge. pp. 429-438.
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  31. Beneficence and Procreation.Molly Gardner - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (2):321-336.
    Consider a duty of beneficence towards a particular individual, S, and call a reason that is grounded in that duty a “beneficence reason towards S.” Call a person who will be brought into existence by an act of procreation the “resultant person.” Is there ever a beneficence reason towards the resultant person for an agent to procreate? In this paper, I argue for such a reason by appealing to two main premises. First, we owe a pro tanto duty of beneficence (...)
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  32. Parental Enhancement and Symmetry of Power in the Parent–Child Relationship.Anca Gheaus - 2016 - Journal of Medical Ethics 42 (6):70-89.
    Many instances of parental enhancement are objectionable on egalitarian grounds because they unnecessarily amplify one kind of asymmetry of power between parents and children. Because children have full moral status, we ought to seek egalitarian relationships with them. Such relationships are compatible with asymmetries of power only to the extent to which the asymmetry is necessary for (1) advancing the child's level of advantage up to what justice requires or (2) instilling in the child morally required features. This is a (...)
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  33. The Normative Importance of Pregnancy Challenges Surrogacy Contracts.Anca Gheaus - 2016 - Analize. Journal of Gender and Feminist Studies 6 (20):20-31.
    Birth mothers usually have a moral right to parent their newborns in virtue of a mutual attachment formed, during gestation, between the gestational mother and the fetus. The attachment is formed, in part, thanks to the burdens of pregnancy, and it serves the interest of the newborn; the gestational mother, too, has a powerful interest in the protection of this attachment. Given its justification, the right to parent one's gestated baby cannot be transferred at will to other people who would (...)
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  34. Unraveling the Asymmetry in Procreative Ethics.Trevor Hedberg - 2016 - APA Newsletter on Philosophy and Medicine 15 (2):18-21.
    The Asymmetry in procreative ethics consists of two claims. The first is that it is morally wrong to bring into existence a child who will have an abjectly miserable life; the second is that it is permissible not to bring into existence a child who will enjoy a very happy life. In this paper, I distinguish between two variations of the Asymmetry. The first is the Abstract Asymmetry, the idealized variation of the Asymmetry that many philosophers have been trying to (...)
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  35. Population Engineering and the Fight Against Climate Change.Colin Hickey, Travis N. Rieder & Jake Earl - 2016 - Social Theory and Practice 42 (4):845-870.
    Contrary to political and philosophical consensus, we argue that the threats posed by climate change justify population engineering, the intentional manipulation of the size and structure of human populations. Specifically, we defend three types of policies aimed at reducing fertility rates: choice enhancement, preference adjustment, and incentivization. While few object to the first type of policy, the latter two are generally rejected because of their potential for coercion or morally objectionable manipulation. We argue that forms of each policy type are (...)
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  36. One Child: Do We Have a Right to More? [REVIEW]Erik Magnusson - 2016 - Contemporary Political Theory 15 (4):477-480.
  37. Debating Procreation: Is It Wrong to Reproduce?, by David Benatar and David Wasserman. [REVIEW]Nancy J. Matchett - 2016 - Teaching Philosophy 39 (2):243-247.
  38. Ethical Sex: Sexual Choices and Their Nature and Meaning.Anthony McCarthy - 2016 - South Bend, USA: Fidelity Press.
    Ethical Sex: Sexual Choices and Their Nature and Meaning is a book-length exploration of the philosophy of sex. It engages with various approaches to the subject, covering natural law approaches and phenomenology as well as virtue ethics.
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  39. Emergency Contraceptives and the Beginning of Human Animals.Eze Paez - 2016 - Bioethics 30 (6):433-439.
    Emergency contraceptives may sometimes prevent implantation, thereby causing the death of the embryo. According to some positions contrary to abortion, because the embryo is a human animal, there are usually decisive moral reasons not to use them. In this article, I will show that objecting to the use of emergency contraceptives on those grounds is unjustified. If organisms are real existents, then according to the most plausible conception of what is required for a group of cells to compose one, the (...)
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  40. Adding Happy People.Theron Pummer - 2016 - In David Edmonds (ed.), Philosophers Take on the World. Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press. pp. 236-239.
    I very briefly sketch two arguments for the claim that we have significant moral reason to ‘add happy people’ (that is, bring into existence people with lives that are well worth living), independently of any effects on those already existing.
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  41. Can a Right to Reproduce Justify the Status Quo on Parental Licensing?Andrew Botterell & Carolyn McLeod - 2015 - In Richard Vernon, Sarah Hannan & Samantha Brennan (eds.), Permissible Progeny: The Morality of Procreation and Parenting. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 184-207.
    The status quo on parental licensing in most Western jurisdictions is that licensing is required in the case of adoption but not in the case of assisted or unassisted biological reproduction. To have a child via adoption, one must fulfill licensing requirements, which, beyond the usual home study, can include mandatory participation in parenting classes. One is exempt from these requirements, however, if one has a child via biological reproduction, including assisted reproduction involving donor gametes or a contract pregnancy. In (...)
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  42. Why the Family?Luara Ferracioli - 2015 - Law, Ethics and Philosophy 3:205-219.
    Among the most pressing philosophical questions occupying those interested in the ethics of the family is why should parents, as opposed to charity workers or state officials, raise children. In their recent Family Values, Brighouse and Swift have further articulated and strengthen their own justification of the parent-child relationship by appealing to its crucial role in enabling the child’s proper development and in allowing parents to play a valuable fiduciary role in the lives of children. In this paper, I argue (...)
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  43. Review of The Non-Identity Problem and the Ethics of Future People. [REVIEW]Molly Gardner - 2015 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews.
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  44. A Harm Based Solution to the Non-Identity Problem.Molly Gardner - 2015 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 2:427-444.
    Many of us agree that we ought not to wrong future people, but there remains disagreement about which of our actions can wrong them. Can we wrong individuals whose lives are worth living by taking actions that result in their very existence? The problem of justifying an answer to this question has come to be known as the non-identity problem.[1] While the literature contains an array of strategies for solving the problem,[2] in this paper I will take what I call (...)
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  45. Procreative Ethics and the Problem of Evil.Jason Marsh - 2015 - In Sarah Hannan, Samantha Brennan & Vernon Richard (eds.), Permissible Progeny? The Morality of Procreation and Parenting. Oxford University Press. pp. 65-86.
    Many people think that the amount of evil and suffering we observe provides important and perhaps decisive evidence against the claim that a loving God created our world. Yet almost nobody worries about the ethics of human procreation. Can these attitudes be consistently maintained? This chapter argues that the most obvious attempts to justify a positive answer fail. The upshot is not that procreation is impermissible, but rather that we should either revise our beliefs about the severity of global arguments (...)
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  46. Against Withdrawing Government and Insurance Subsidies for ARTs From Fertile People, with Special Reference to Lesbian and Gay Individuals.Timothy F. Murphy - 2015 - Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (5):388-390.
    One way to help ensure the future of human life on the planet is to reduce the total number of people alive, as a hedge against dangers to the environment. One commentator has proposed withdrawing government and insurance subsidies from all fertile people, to help reduce the number of births. Any proposal of this kind does not, however, offer a solution commensurate with current problems of resource use and carbon emissions. Closing off fertility medicine to some people – or even (...)
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  47. Transformative Choice: Discussion and Replies.L. A. Paul - 2015 - Res Philosophica 92 (2):473-545.
    In “What you can’t expect when you’re expecting,” I argue that, if you don’t know what it’s like to be a parent, you cannot make this decision rationally—at least, not if your decision is based on what you think it would be like for you to become a parent. My argument hinges on the idea that becoming a parent is a transformative experience. This unique type of experience often transforms people in a deep and personal sense, and in the process, (...)
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  48. What You Can't Expect When You're Expecting'.L. A. Paul - 2015 - Res Philosophica 92 (2):1-23.
    It seems natural to choose whether to have a child by reflecting on what it would be like to actually have a child. I argue that this natural approach fails. If you choose to become a parent, and your choice is based on projections about what you think it would be like for you to have a child, your choice is not rational. If you choose to remain childless, and your choice is based upon projections about what you think it (...)
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  49. How You Can Reasonably Form Expectations When You're Expecting.Nathaniel Sharadin - 2015 - Res Philosophica 92 (2):1-12.
    L.A. Paul has argued that an ordinary, natural way of making a decision -- by reflecting on the phenomenal character of the experiences one will have as a result of that decision -- cannot yield rational decision in certain cases. Paul's argument turns on the (in principle) epistemically inaccessible phenomenal character of certain experiences. In this paper I argue that, even granting Paul a range of assumptions, her argument doesn't work to establish its conclusion. This is because, as I argue, (...)
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  50. Public Goods and Procreation.Jonny Anomaly - 2014 - Monash Bioethics Review 32 (3-4):172-188.
1 — 50 / 140