Challenges to human equality

Journal of Ethics 12 (1):81 - 104 (2007)
Abstract
According to liberal egalitarian morality, all human beings are one another's moral equals. Nonhuman animals, by contrast, are not considered to be our moral equals. This essay considers two challenges to the liberal egalitarian view. One is the ``separation problem,'' which is the challenge to identify a morally significant intrinsic difference between all human beings and all nonhuman animals. The other is the “equality problem,” which is to explain how all human beings can be morally equal when there are some human beings whose psychological capacities (and, in some cases, their psychological potentials as well) are no higher than those of certain nonhuman animals. The focus throughout is on the ethics of killing but the arguments are of broader relevance. The essay reaches a skeptical conclusion about our ability to meet these challenges.
Keywords animals, cognitive disability  equality  killing
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Reprint years 2008
DOI 10.1007/s10892-007-9020-9
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Transferring Morality to Human–Nonhuman Chimeras.Monika Piotrowska - 2014 - American Journal of Bioethics 14 (2):4-12.
Why the Concept of Moral Status Should Be Abandoned.Oscar Horta - 2017 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 20 (4):899-910.
Human Enhancement and Supra-Personal Moral Status.Thomas Douglas - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 162 (3):473-497.
Killing, Wrongness, and Equality.Carlos Soto - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 164 (2):543-559.

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