Why appeals to the moral significance of birth are saddled with a dilemma

Journal of Medical Ethics 48 (7):490-491 (2022)

Abstract

In ‘Dilemma for Appeals to the Moral Significance of Birth’, we argued that a dilemma is faced by those who believe that birth is the event at which infanticide is ruled out. Those who reject the moral permissibility of infanticide by appeal to the moral significance of birth must either accept the moral permissibility of a late-term abortion for a non-therapeutic reason or not. If they accept it, they need to account for the strong intuition that her decision is wrong as well as deny the underlying normative principle that killing a viable fetus requires good reason, and not wanting to care for the child when the child could be easily placed for adoption is not a good enough reason to abort. If they reject the moral permissibility of the late-term abortion, they need to explain why her decision is wrong. Doing so, however, will undermine their own project of denying infanticide by appeal to birth. Walter Veit argues that the dilemma relies too much on intuition and does not live up to biological continuity. We explain why his criticisms are unconvincing.

Download options

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 72,879

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Analytics

Added to PP
2021-04-01

Downloads
21 (#540,470)

6 months
9 (#81,155)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author Profiles

Christopher A. Bobier
Saint Mary's University of Minnesota
Adam Omelianchuk
Baylor College of Medicine

References found in this work

Fetuses, Newborns, and Parental Responsibility.Prabhpal Singh - 2020 - Journal of Medical Ethics 46 (3):188-193.
Does Birth Matter?Walter Veit - 2022 - Journal of Medical Ethics 48 (3):194-195.
Birth, Meaningful Viability and Abortion.David Jensen - 2015 - Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (6):460-463.

Add more references

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Moral Significance of Birth.Mary Anne Warren - 1989 - Hypatia 4 (3):46 - 65.
Does Birth Matter?Walter Veit - 2022 - Journal of Medical Ethics 48 (3):194-195.
The Viable Violinist.Michael Hawking - 2016 - Bioethics 30 (5):312-316.
The Viable Violinist.Michael Hawking - 2016 - Bioethics 30 (4):312-316.
The Moral Significance of Birth.José Luis Bermúdez - 1996 - Ethics 106 (2):378 - 403.
Parental Responsibilities and Moral Status.Bruce Philip Blackshaw & Daniel Rodger - 2020 - Journal of Medical Ethics 47 (3):187-188.
Infanticide.Jeff Mcmahan - 2007 - Utilitas 19 (2):131-159.
Birth, Meaningful Viability and Abortion.David Jensen - 2015 - Journal of Medical Ethics 41 (6):460-463.
After-Birth Abortion: Why Should the Baby Live?Alberto Giubilini & Francesca Minerva - 2013 - Journal of Medical Ethics 39 (5):261-263.
Abortion, Infanticide and Moral Context.Lindsey Porter - 2013 - Journal of Medical Ethics 39 (5):350-352.