Requiring actual consciousness renders us non-persons whenever we sleep. Requiring immediately attainable consciousness excludes those in surgery. Requiring the basic neural brain structures for consciousness (but not consciousness itself) excludes those whose brains are temporarily damaged. On the other hand, if potentiality for consciousness makes a being a person, then those sleeping, in surgery, or temporarily comatose are persons, but so also would be the normal human embryo, fetus, and newborn.
Saturday, April 9, 2011
Kaczor on Why Consciousness is Not value-Giving [Scott]
When critics of the pro-life view assert that consciousness bestows value and a right to life on human beings, you should immediately ask: 1)“Why is that value-giving? It sounds ad-hoc to me. 2) What do you mean by consciousness? That is, do you mean one must be able to immediately exercise it or do you mean something else?” The question—“What do you mean by consciousness?”—sets up this soundbite from Christopher Kaczor: