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  • Natural Harm

    February 6th, 2013
    morality
    A: Life begins at conception. From that point on the embryo is a person and has the same moral status as a child.

    B: What do you think of diseases that kill small children?

    A: They're horrible and we must eliminate them.

    B: The children?

    A: The diseases!

    B: Sorry! What do you think of embryos that die between conception and birth? [1]

    A: Because of abortions?

    B: No, because they just die on their own.

    A: Natural embryo loss and miscarrages? They're just things that happen. It can be very sad for the parents, but it's not a moral issue like abortion.

    B: What about animal suffering?

    A: Animal suffering counts just like human suffering, and we should minimize it. Factoring farming is horrible. If you keep a cat you shouldn't let it outside because cats kill birds. Consider giving up meat.

    B: What about suffering of animals in nature? [2]

    A: Again, that's just something that happens. It's not a moral issue.


    Update 2013-02-08: I agree with B.


    [1] The Scourge: Moral Implications of Natural Embryo Loss (Toby Ord, 2008)

    [2] The Importance of Wild-Animal Suffering (Brian Tomasik, 2009)

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