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qualitative personhood analysis

Rob1Billion
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12/4/2009 10:10:43 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
People are considered the ultimate entities. Destroying one, therefore, in murder, can sometimes warrant the most extreme of punishments.

Do you consider a fetus a person? How much value should we put on the life of the fetus? Does it have the value of a full-fledged human (abortion=murder), the value of an insect (which is comparable to size/complexity), or some intermediate value (e.g. the value you would put on a beloved pet)?

These questions have been poured over enough on DDO, so what I would like in response to this thread is some very short answers to these questions:
A) what makes a fetus a person?
B) what separates a fetus from being considered a person?

Please answer one or both of these in a short, one or two-sentence reply. I will criticize the answers based on logic and brevity.
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Volkov
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12/4/2009 12:29:14 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/4/2009 10:10:43 AM, Rob1Billion wrote:
These questions have been poured over enough on DDO, so what I would like in response to this thread is some very short answers to these questions:
A) what makes a fetus a person?

Nothing. A fetus is a fetus. Fetuses are developing humans, but not fully-fledged humans. In most cases, they neither have cognitive thought, nor do they have sufficient capabilities to be considered 'independent,' 'individual,' and a 'person.'

Think of it this way; do you call the chassis in a factory a car?

B) what separates a fetus from being considered a person?

Couple things. One, its not a person, its a fetus - big distinction. Two, it isn't an independent entity that can live on its own without it's, I hate to say it but, "host."

Please answer one or both of these in a short, one or two-sentence reply. I will criticize the answers based on logic and brevity.

I'm sure you will.
Rob1Billion
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12/4/2009 1:58:28 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
A) what makes a fetus a person?

Nothing. A fetus is a fetus. Fetuses are developing humans, but not fully-fledged humans. In most cases, they neither have cognitive thought, nor do they have sufficient capabilities to be considered 'independent,' 'individual,' and a 'person.'

So your answer to my question is paraphrased "A fetus is not a person because they lack cognitive thought". Your comments about "sufficient capabilities" are too ambiguous for further discussion.

Think of it this way; do you call the chassis in a factory a car?

The analogy of chassis to a car is not the same as a human to a fetus; your analogy is more fitting to a person and their legs - a part of the finished product which does not represent the full entity. The fetus does, in a certain sense (esp late), represent the entire entity. I would reject this analysis, at least in the way it is currently worded.

B) what separates a fetus from being considered a person?

Couple things. One, its not a person, its a fetus - big distinction. Two, it isn't an independent entity that can live on its own without it's, I hate to say it but, "host."

paraphrased: "Lack of independence in regards to self-sustainability".

Now to respond to the paraphrased argument you presented.

"A fetus is not a person because it lacks cognitive thought" -

I don't see "cognition" as being a viable separator; dogs are dognitive but they aren't people. Comatose people could be thought to lack cognition.

"Lack of independence in regards to self-sustainability" -

A baby or small child is also utterly dependant on it's parents.

Therefore, looking at a fetus as a part of the whole, citing it's cognitive skills, and pointing out that it is not independent does notcapture the essence of what seperates a person from a fetus.
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Volkov
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12/4/2009 2:12:30 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/4/2009 1:58:28 PM, Rob1Billion wrote:
I would reject this analysis, at least in the way it is currently worded.

I disagree. The creation of the chassis is just one part in the development of an automobile, same as the brain is just one part in the development of a fetus. Or the skeleton. Or the legs. Etc.

I don't see "cognition" as being a viable separator; dogs are dognitive but they aren't people. Comatose people could be thought to lack cognition.

Comatose people do have a lack of cognition, whether permanent or temporary. Hence why the rights and decisions of the comatose are placed in the hands of kin, of the doctors, and of the state. The major difference between a comatose person and a fetus, though, is that a comatose person has already lived their lives separate from the machines they have been placed on, and that their civil rights have already been set by their lives before their entering into a comatose state. The fetus has neither of these precedents.

A baby or small child is also utterly dependant on it's parents.

Incorrect. A baby and/or small child is not "utterly dependent." upon their parents, otherwise orphans would not exist, when they clearly do. Indeed, for a child to have the best chance at life, having a stable family life is needed - but it isn't a requirement for them to continue living.

Therefore, looking at a fetus as a part of the whole, citing it's cognitive skills, and pointing out that it is not independent does notcapture the essence of what seperates a person from a fetus.

Fail.
Rob1Billion
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12/4/2009 3:55:42 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
I disagree. The creation of the chassis is just one part in the development of an automobile, same as the brain is just one part in the development of a fetus. Or the skeleton. Or the legs. Etc.

I don't see how this supports your assertion that the chassis are to a car what the fetus is to a person. It is indeed one step in the creation, but the chassis do not represent the engine, the windows, wheels etc like a fetus does to a person. The fetus can have eyes, brain, etc. - not just one component. Again, Legs would be to a person what the chassis are to an automobile.

I don't see "cognition" as being a viable separator; dogs are dognitive but they aren't people. Comatose people could be thought to lack cognition.

Comatose people do have a lack of cognition, whether permanent or temporary. Hence why the rights and decisions of the comatose are placed in the hands of kin, of the doctors, and of the state. The major difference between a comatose person and a fetus, though, is that a comatose person has already lived their lives separate from the machines they have been placed on, and that their civil rights have already been set by their lives before their entering into a comatose state. The fetus has neither of these precedents.

This is all great, but that still doesn't make cognition the defining attribute of personhood. Since cognition can be shared with non-persons, it cannot be the defining factor.

A baby or small child is also utterly dependant on it's parents.

Incorrect. A baby and/or small child is not "utterly dependent." upon their parents, otherwise orphans would not exist, when they clearly do. Indeed, for a child to have the best chance at life, having a stable family life is needed - but it isn't a requirement for them to continue living.

this is illogical; orphans have parents too and are utterly dependant on them. You can't make an argument that an infant or toddler could make it on its own with no outside influence.
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Volkov
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12/4/2009 4:24:17 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/4/2009 3:55:42 PM, Rob1Billion wrote:
I don't see how this supports your assertion that the chassis are to a car what the fetus is to a person. It is indeed one step in the creation, but the chassis do not represent the engine, the windows, wheels etc like a fetus does to a person. The fetus can have eyes, brain, etc. - not just one component. Again, Legs would be to a person what the chassis are to an automobile.

The development of the chassis, or the motor, or any major part of a car, is important. They're done in stages - without the motor, you have no movement, without the chassis, you have no place for the motor, etc. The fetus is simply that - done in stages, with the skeletal structure, the eyes, the brain, the appendages, etc. If you don't understand this fact of simple how developmental stages work, then you don't have much of an argument.

This is all great, but that still doesn't make cognition the defining attribute of personhood. Since cognition can be shared with non-persons, it cannot be the defining factor.

Sure it can - an individual has no life if they have no cognition. Otherwise, they're just a lump of flesh.

this is illogical; orphans have parents too and are utterly dependant on them. You can't make an argument that an infant or toddler could make it on its own with no outside influence.

Really? So an orphan has parents, eh? They wouldn't be orphans, then.

And of course a toddler can't make it on its own with no outside influence. No individual can, at least not in this reality. But, your requirement is that a toddler can only live if in the care of parents or guardians - I am saying there is no proof of such, because if a toddler has no parents with it, that toddler will still be living.

Besides, aren't you missing a major point here? A toddler can bounce from "parent" to "parent," and those "parents" equally have the ability to leave the child be, because the child isn't literally attached to them. A fetus is literally attached to the mother, so much so that any removal would violate the rights of the mother to her body. What you're asking is that the state will either forcefully cut open the mother's body, or force the mother to carry a child to term - both things against her (hypothetical) wishes.
Rob1Billion
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12/4/2009 4:43:12 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
Let's reset this for a moment if you will; my point here is to establish an irrefutable criterion for the fundamental difference between a fetus and a person. Your points aren't necessarily bad, from a pro-choice v. pro-life POV, but they don't seem to show, beyond a shadow of a doubt, what the absolute difference between a fetus and a person is. Like I said before, cognition CANNOT be this difference, because animals can fit the definition of cognitive. Neither can dependence v. independence, as a baby is just as dependent on someone or something as the fetus is. Humans are not technically self-sufficient until at least several years - well after personhood is achieved. The chassis argument could logically work in a certain way, but it doesn't do the job of explaining the crucial difference between a fetus and a person. The chassis argument pretty much just explaines that a fetus ISN'T a person...
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Volkov
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12/4/2009 4:49:34 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
The reason why you can't pin down such explanations is because it is all too subjective. The only criterion for a "person" is whether or not they're individuals, a criterion that can only be decided on the opinions of others.
Danielle
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12/4/2009 4:53:10 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
A) What makes a fetus a person?
B) What separates a fetus from being considered a person?


I'd say consciousness.
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Rob1Billion
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12/4/2009 6:33:57 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
The reason why you can't pin down such explanations is because it is all too subjective. The only criterion for a "person" is whether or not they're individuals, a criterion that can only be decided on the opinions of others.

We haven't yet established that it cannot be "pinned down"... Unless we are utterly unsuccessful here. I think we can make some headway before we reach that dead end...
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Rob1Billion
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12/4/2009 6:42:09 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/4/2009 4:53:10 PM, theLwerd wrote:
A) What makes a fetus a person?
B) What separates a fetus from being considered a person?


I'd say consciousness.

consciousness: "awake and aware of one's surroundings and identity" -1997 Oxford dictionary

Well awake obviously doesn't work... Knowing one's own identity could be on to something... Although this is more of a benchmark of the standard I am looking for more than the standard itself. Knowing one's own identity isn't really valuable enough to the point of distinguishing the worth of a person, although you could argue it is something animals/fetuses don't have (that people and babies do, perhaps even late-pregnancy embryos). Perhaps you could give me a better definition of consciousness that captures the essence of your argument.
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Harlan
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12/4/2009 8:14:19 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/4/2009 6:42:09 PM, Rob1Billion wrote:
At 12/4/2009 4:53:10 PM, theLwerd wrote:
A) What makes a fetus a person?
B) What separates a fetus from being considered a person?


I'd say consciousness.

consciousness: "awake and aware of one's surroundings and identity" -1997 Oxford dictionary

Well awake obviously doesn't work... Knowing one's own identity could be on to something... Although this is more of a benchmark of the standard I am looking for more than the standard itself. Knowing one's own identity isn't really valuable enough to the point of distinguishing the worth of a person, although you could argue it is something animals/fetuses don't have (that people and babies do, perhaps even late-pregnancy embryos). Perhaps you could give me a better definition of consciousness that captures the essence of your argument.

No, identity doesn't work either for feti (the plural of fetus, obviously). Fetuses/infants aren't self-aware.
Rob1Billion
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12/4/2009 10:28:54 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
Harlan: good point... Self-awareness does not meet the criterion of infant, as they are really not self-aware in any meaningful sense and obviously are considered people. p.s. thanks for the plural of fetus, that one was really killing me! p.p.s. nice Waking Life quote. awesome flick. So as of yet, I don't thiink anyone has provided a workable measure of personhood. I would ask: how can we even debate personhood/abortion without even being able to come up with a standard to base our argument on? Are there any out there brave enough to put forth this standard? Certainly there is no better place than DDO to find someone who can meet this challenge...
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mattrodstrom
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12/4/2009 10:41:25 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/4/2009 10:28:54 PM, Rob1Billion wrote:
Harlan: good point... Self-awareness does not meet the criterion of infant, as they are really not self-aware in any meaningful sense and obviously are considered people. p.s. thanks for the plural of fetus, that one was really killing me! p.p.s. nice Waking Life quote. awesome flick. So as of yet, I don't thiink anyone has provided a workable measure of personhood. I would ask: how can we even debate personhood/abortion without even being able to come up with a standard to base our argument on? Are there any out there brave enough to put forth this standard? Certainly there is no better place than DDO to find someone who can meet this challenge...

If they are conscious/thinking homo sapiens.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
mattrodstrom
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12/4/2009 11:13:02 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/4/2009 10:41:25 PM, mattrodstrom wrote:

If they are conscious/thinking homo sapiens.

or capable of such thought
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
Rob1Billion
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12/6/2009 3:34:22 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
If they are conscious/thinking homo sapiens... or capable of such thought.

So consciousnous does not cut it, and neither does being a homo sapien. But combining the two all of a sudden makes the difference? Combining two non-essential attributes to create a scenario in which there are no possible exceptions is not quite enough to define what makes us people, however since we are getting close I will come out with what I feel makes the true difference.

Unless the soul can be demonstrated, which it cannot, we must find something real to judge "personhood". What separates us from lower animals is simply our complexity, particularly of the brain. I would express this in one word as "order".

Volcov's chassis argument is quite correct in asserting that the fetus is simply a work in progress, and that it cannot be granted rights as a person. The fetus' brain is simply not intricate enough to have any value. When the brain reaches some point of order, it gains consciousness, personality, and all of the other things we use to judge the value of a person.

Unless this definition can be reasonably refuted, there is, generally speaking, no reason to argue about abortion rights. Pro-life is a stance based on superstition, and it is immoral for pro-lifers to push their supernatural agenda on the rest of us as US citizens.
Master P is the end result of capitalism.
mattrodstrom
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12/6/2009 3:53:22 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 3:34:22 PM, Rob1Billion wrote:
If they are conscious/thinking homo sapiens... or capable of such thought.

So consciousnous does not cut it, and neither does being a homo sapien. But combining the two all of a sudden makes the difference? Combining two non-essential attributes to create a scenario in which there are no possible exceptions is not quite enough to define what makes us people, however since we are getting close I will come out with what I feel makes the true difference.

Unless the soul can be demonstrated, which it cannot, we must find something real to judge "personhood". What separates us from lower animals is simply our complexity, particularly of the brain. I would express this in one word as "order".

Volcov's chassis argument is quite correct in asserting that the fetus is simply a work in progress, and that it cannot be granted rights as a person. The fetus' brain is simply not intricate enough to have any value. When the brain reaches some point of order, it gains consciousness, personality, and all of the other things we use to judge the value of a person.

At most points a fetus' brain is a work in progress, but supposedly more developed fetus' can learn and feel and think.

I would say human feeling is what truly separates people from other things, from our ethical perspectives. A conscious computer would not necessarily be deserving of rights, whereas a dog, I think most would say, ought be protected/respected to some degree.

Further there is inconsistancy in the stance that one 8 month old is deserving, and another is not, simply on the basis of location, rights are determined based upon the systems own internal charecteristics.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
Puck
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12/6/2009 4:03:13 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 3:53:22 PM, mattrodstrom wrote:

At most points a fetus' brain is a work in progress, but supposedly more developed fetus' can learn and feel and think.

Think what?

I would say human feeling is what truly separates people from other things, from our ethical perspectives. A conscious computer would not necessarily be deserving of rights, whereas a dog, I think most would say, ought be protected/respected to some degree.

Dogs have human feelings? Or the dog has rights cause you feel for it?


Further there is inconsistancy in the stance that one 8 month old is deserving, and another is not, simply on the basis of location

Location?
mattrodstrom
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12/6/2009 4:36:25 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 4:03:13 PM, Puck wrote:

Think what?
They can apparantly hear what going on from in the womb, and hold onto that knowledge to when they get out.
http://books.google.com...

Dogs have human feelings? Or the dog has rights cause you feel for it?
People identify with and give rights to dogs because they are seem to have human-like feeling. We don't care to protect insects from being killed or whatnot but we do care to protect those we can empathize with, those which we think feel as we do.
A cognitive computer that lacked human feeling we do not feel deserving of rights. A cognitive person, who has demonstrated a consistent lack of human feeling, through in-humane action, we care to respect their "rights", but rather say that they have given them up/ are not deserving.

Further there is inconsistancy in the stance that one 8 month old is deserving, and another is not, simply on the basis of location

Location?

Location: the mother's womb vs the hospital crib

Sure, one location greatly inconveniences the mother, but in the question of rights, it is the inherent charecteristics of the system in question which ought to be important, measuring and balancing rights of peoples comes after establishing who is deserving of them.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
mattrodstrom
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12/6/2009 4:38:46 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 4:36:25 PM, mattrodstrom wrote:

A cognitive computer that lacked human feeling we do not feel deserving of rights. A cognitive person, who has demonstrated a consistent lack of human feeling, through in-humane action, we don't care to respect their "rights", but rather say that they have given them up/ are not deserving.

Fixed
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
Puck
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12/6/2009 5:22:11 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 4:36:25 PM, mattrodstrom wrote:
At 12/6/2009 4:03:13 PM, Puck wrote:

They can apparantly hear what going on from in the womb, and hold onto that knowledge to when they get out.

Sure, but memory =/= thought in this instance, or at best a very loose interpretation of it. As a foetus, stimuli is present, and it is only a recording of this stimuli that constitutes as thought, by necessity, being no other arena where cognition can occur such to constitute giving it meaning. It at best constitutes as a form of awareness, consciousness. Infants up to around 4 days are just as likely to respond in the same fashion to other female primate sounds as their mothers voice.

People identify with and give rights to dogs because they are seem to have human-like feeling. We don't care to protect insects from being killed or whatnot but we do care to protect those we can empathize with, those which we think feel as we do.

So the basis of rights are it's huggable?

A cognitive computer that lacked human feeling we do not feel deserving of rights.

Who is we?

A cognitive person, who has demonstrated a consistent lack of human feeling, through in-humane action, we care to respect their "rights", but rather say that they have given them up/ are not deserving.

So both have no rights and who is we again? You are talking about two different things here, one, the computer, and if they constitute enough for rights, the second, a person, who has such constituted and then voids them. One can't argue the latter is analogous to the former, since they deal with opposite ends, the man already has the relevant characteristics, whatever you are deciding they should be, the computer you do not recognise as holding them. As for 'what I think you all think' we rhetoric, it is somewhat pointless - consensus doesn't give people characteristics for the required standard, whatever you think it is, for a standard of 'this has rights'.

Location: the mother's womb vs the hospital crib

The status of the feotus as an individual with rights or none at all is somewhat moot, to say, the abortion question itself, because rights by nature are as freedoms of action, not to some automatic claim, entitlement to goods, services, life, that others should provide. Even if we grant a feotus had a right to life it wouldn't obligate in any manner the pregnant mother to allow the feotus to continue living off of them anymore than you are obligated to give someone one of your kidneys if they need it to live - just because that person has a right to life. A valid concept of rights should not contain contradictions, and giving primacy to the foetus does exactly that.

As for the personhood arguments for birth - what confers personhood is being a person, it is about a basic as that. A baby is fairly much the same a moment before and after birth, however its relationship to the world is completely different - no longer being explicitly restricted to the mother for life and able to use senses to from concepts, it becomes in essence the same as another person because of this.

who is deserving of them.

You make it sound like they are granted as favour. Either an entity holds the required characteristics or they don't. If these characteristics are recognised by others is a completely different argument.
Harlan
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12/6/2009 6:25:12 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/4/2009 10:28:54 PM, Rob1Billion wrote:
Harlan: good point... Self-awareness does not meet the criterion of infant, as they are really not self-aware in any meaningful sense and obviously are considered people. p.s. thanks for the plural of fetus, that one was really killing me! p.p.s. nice Waking Life quote. awesome flick.

(On a sidenote, I don't think feti is really the plural of fetus)

And thanks for recognizing the quote from Waking Life. That movie is fantastic.
mattrodstrom
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12/6/2009 7:31:02 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 5:22:11 PM, Puck wrote:
At 12/6/2009 4:36:25 PM, mattrodstrom wrote:
At 12/6/2009 4:03:13 PM, Puck wrote:

They can apparantly hear what going on from in the womb, and hold onto that knowledge to when they get out.

Sure, but memory =/= thought in this instance, or at best a very loose interpretation of it. As a foetus, stimuli is present, and it is only a recording of this stimuli that constitutes as thought, by necessity, being no other arena where cognition can occur such to constitute giving it meaning. It at best constitutes as a form of awareness, consciousness. Infants up to around 4 days are just as likely to respond in the same fashion to other female primate sounds as their mothers voice.

Why is it that an babe out of the womb can be "able to use senses to from concepts" and one in the womb can't.

People identify with and give rights to dogs because they are seem to have human-like feeling. We don't care to protect insects from being killed or whatnot but we do care to protect those we can empathize with, those which we think feel as we do.

So the basis of rights are it's huggable?

I think the basis of ethics is human feeling, and that it is applicable when dealing with those who have it. Right and Wrong are rooted in what we care about, and are not consequential to things which don't care, and not applicable to.

A cognitive computer that lacked human feeling we do not feel deserving of rights.

Who is we?
would you feel that a self aware, but non "feeling" computer, is deserving of rights? If not: you and I.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
Puck
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12/6/2009 7:39:23 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 7:31:02 PM, mattrodstrom wrote:

Why is it that an babe out of the womb can be "able to use senses to from concepts" and one in the womb can't.

Because the womb is a restricted environment. There is no interaction a foetus can perform where environmental concepts can be formed. An infant however is able to respond to the environment.



I think the basis of ethics is human feeling, and that it is applicable when dealing with those who have it. Right and Wrong are rooted in what we care about, and are not consequential to things which don't care, and not applicable to.

What is ethics is not equatable to rights. Different concepts.

would you feel that a self aware, but non "feeling" computer, is deserving of rights? If not: you and I.

Yes, depending it can be sufficiently provided to demonstrate as such, in addition to other things besides self awareness. Self awareness is necessary, though not sufficient.
mattrodstrom
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12/6/2009 7:50:57 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 7:39:23 PM, Puck wrote:


What is ethics is not equatable to rights. Different concepts.

Different concepts yes. But ideas of rights which ought be respected can only come from an ethical standpoint, and I hold that ethics only applies to those with human feeling.

Yes, depending it can be sufficiently provided to demonstrate as such, in addition to other things besides self awareness. Self awareness is necessary, though not sufficient.

What else, could it be human feeling, or something to replace it, like a non-harm principle?
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
Puck
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12/6/2009 7:57:48 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 7:50:57 PM, mattrodstrom wrote:
At 12/6/2009 7:39:23 PM, Puck wrote:


What is ethics is not equatable to rights. Different concepts.

Different concepts yes. But ideas of rights which ought be respected can only come from an ethical standpoint, and I hold that ethics only applies to those with human feeling.

1. Why is feelings a valid base, you just assert it as fact. 2. The ethics must follow from the concept of rights you hold, or it's not a valid interaction. Ethics is the particular description of 'this is good/bad' that you follow - any concept of rights must precede it by nature, the evaluation of what is good/bad being in part reference to that standard.


Yes, depending it can be sufficiently provided to demonstrate as such, in addition to other things besides self awareness. Self awareness is necessary, though not sufficient.

What else, could it be human feeling, or something to replace it, like a non-harm principle?

Rationality - instances of harm are applicable to what's done after the fact.
mattrodstrom
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12/6/2009 8:08:19 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 7:57:48 PM, Puck wrote:

1. Why is feelings a valid base, you just assert it as fact. 2. The ethics must follow from the concept of rights you hold, or it's not a valid interaction. Ethics is the particular description of 'this is good/bad' that you follow - any concept of rights must precede it by nature, the evaluation of what is good/bad being in part reference to that standard.

Ethics is a guide to action. Why would one act without caring. And for those which might, like a bug, ethics is not an issue.

There are different kinds of caring, one might say a dog cares to eat, this causes it to act. But in this first kind of action is not the subject of ethics. Ethics deals with human-like caring, caring about social interactions, in a human manner.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
Puck
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12/6/2009 8:20:45 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 8:08:19 PM, mattrodstrom wrote:

Ethics is a guide to action. Why would one act without caring. And for those which might, like a bug, ethics is not an issue.

Yes a guide by evaluation. I want to act in accordance with a standard so I have rights? No. You are trying to assert a basis of rights in emotional capacity, because something feels - even if granted, you still need that prior established for the act to be meaningful towards it.


Ethics deals with human-like caring, caring about social interactions, in a human manner.

No, ethics deals with goals. Caring about your goals is secondary to what ethics are, a standard to accomplish something. Societal interaction belongs with rights, not ethics, and equivocating the two still gets you nowhere.
mattrodstrom
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12/6/2009 8:26:44 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 8:20:45 PM, Puck wrote:

No, ethics deals with goals. Caring about your goals is secondary to what ethics are, a standard to accomplish something.

If you don't care you don't have goals. Goals come from caring about something.

Societal interaction belongs with rights, not ethics, and equivocating the two still gets you nowhere.

Ethics deals only with social interactions, and anyone who tells you otherwise is likely assigning supernatural, and thus unreasonable, ethical worth to things. Further why ought rights be respected, if not for some ethical reason.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
Puck
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12/6/2009 8:35:38 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 12/6/2009 8:26:44 PM, mattrodstrom wrote:
At 12/6/2009 8:20:45 PM, Puck wrote:

No, ethics deals with goals. Caring about your goals is secondary to what ethics are, a standard to accomplish something.

If you don't care you don't have goals. Goals come from caring about something.

You have argued the basis of rights are in emotions, that ethics = rights. To care about something, one must first have something to care about. The ethics are the standard, the evaluation 'this is good' is what makes something ethical. You cannot care without first establishing what it is to care for, without first organising some standard where 'I care about this' becomes relevant. How you tie this into rights, no idea, since you are not clear on that either, just, it makes me feel kinda squishy inside so it has rights.



Societal interaction belongs with rights, not ethics, and equivocating the two still gets you nowhere.

Ethics deals only with social interactions, and anyone who tells you otherwise is likely assigning supernatural, and thus unreasonable, ethical worth to things.

Supernatural not at all. If your goal is the self and ones life, societal interactions, though likely relevant, are not the sole requisite for deciding what is good for the self in all situations.

Rights however are specifically based around interactions with others, more specifically detailing freedom from what others should be free to do to you.