Saturday, May 30

Tag: personhood

Hamburger And Handel, Porterhouse And Picasso

Hamburger And Handel, Porterhouse And Picasso

I want to solicit the help of – as strange as this is going to sound, coming from me – conservative, pro-life / anti-abortion, evangelical Christians in understanding something that has happened to me multiple times in debates about abortion. By “multiple times,” I mean so often that I have come to expect some cognate of this pattern to recur as a matter of course. As you might expect, the whole debate turns on the issue of the “ontological” status of the fetus in the mother’s womb:  is the fetus a human person or not, and if the fetus is human, when in the pregnancy does the fetus attain this status of person-hood? As I have said elsewhere, I have no idea what the answer to the above italicized question is, and my entire stance of being pro-choice is predicated on my ignorance a...
Thoughtful Thursday:  Cetaceans

Thoughtful Thursday: Cetaceans

India has recently banned holding dolphins captive and especially "dolphin shows." Their reasoning? “Whereas cetaceans in general are highly intelligent and sensitive, and various scientists who have researched dolphin behavior have suggested that the unusually high intelligence; as compared to other animals means that dolphin should be seen as ‘non-human persons’ and as such should have their own specific rights and is morally unacceptable to keep them captive for entertainment purpose.” Non-human persons. What, then, gives personhood? What are the legal, moral, and ethical implications of conferring personhood on non-human persons? What about our spiritual and religious point-of-view? If we include non-human persons in our soteriology (doctrines of how we are "saved"), does that chan...