Saturday, October 13, 2012

The right to life

I previously wrote about the how right to life could be used to justify forcing women to have abortions, the irony of which will only ever be appreciated by a select few. Using this as an actual argument is, however, clearly fraught with problems because it positions most people against the use of logic and in favour of emotive prejudices. But if my argument really does imply that counter intuitive claim then there probably exists additional supporting evidence which may lessen its perceived repugnance.

Consider the following:
Imagine a world where people ordinarily live forever. Would the right to life mandate against creating people with finite lifespans?

One key difference between that world and this one is that active steps would need to be taken to ensure that someone dies. In our world, there is no such option and death is something more of a mere passive and incidental outcome of the decision to procreate, at least in the perception of those who have children. Note that if the above scenario is insufficient for some purpose then we can alternatively consider a world where no one suffers and then imposing suffering on an unfortunate would-be person.

Getting back to the main issue, the point of the thought experiment was to make plausible the notion that adhering to the right to life could preclude one from procreating because the person would die eventually. Even if one disagreed that it was wrong to create a person who would die at some point, it's not hard to imagine that the immortal inhabitants of that world might argue against that behavior on considerations of a hypothetical right to life and my original argument therefore wasn't totally absurd.

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