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“You Ain’t a Person, and We’ll Keep It That Way”: A Reply to Berkich

  • Daniel Propson (a1)

Don Berkich has argued that the so-called Trajectory Argument for the moral impermissibility of abortion falls short because it fails to establish that an embryo that never becomes a person has the same rights as an embryo that becomes a person. I argue that Berkich’s argument fails to be convincing, since (1) aborting a particular embryo itself causes the embryo not to become a person, and (2) the premise that abortion would be wrong if it were done with the intention of preventing a particular person’s existence assumes that arbitrary killings are somehow better than targeted ones, which is implausible.

Don Berkich a défendu l’idée que «l’argument de la trajectoire», invoqué pour justifier l’inconvenance de l’interruption volontaire de grossesse, est invalide parce qu’il n’établit pas qu’un embryon qui n’est jamais devenu une personne a les mêmes droits qu’un embryon qui devient une personne. Je soutiens que les arguments de Berkich ne sont pas convaincants puisque (1) l’action même d’avorter empêche l’embryon détruit par cet avortement de devenir une personne, et (2) la démonstration de Berkich suppose implicitement que le meurtre arbitraire est meilleur que le meurtre ciblé, ce qui est invraisemblable.

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Berkich, Donald B. 2007A Fallacy in Potentiality.” Dialogue 46: 137150.
Dumsday, Travis 2008Abortion and Non-Fallacious Potentiality.” Dialogue 47 (2):387394.
Gürkan Zorlu, C., Aral, K., Ekici, E., Yalçin, H., Turan, C., Gökmen, O. 1996Causative factors in first trimester abortion failure.” Adv Contracept. 12 (1): 6367.
Marquis, Don 1989Why Abortion Is Immoral.” The Journal of Philosophy 86 (4): 183202.
Pruss, Alexander R 2002I Was Once a Fetus: That Is Why Abortion Is Wrong.” Life and Learning 12: 169–82.
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Dialogue: Canadian Philosophical Review / Revue canadienne de philosophie
  • ISSN: 0012-2173
  • EISSN: 1759-0949
  • URL: /core/journals/dialogue-canadian-philosophical-review-revue-canadienne-de-philosophie
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