Answer to Question #115053 in Philosophy for Prachi

Question #115053
What are the similarities and differences between the questions of abortion and animal ethics? What is the connection between personhood and rights? Do you think some animals are moral persons? If not, do you agree that some animals have at least the right to life. On what principle can that right be based?
1
Expert's answer
2020-05-11T11:51:48-0400

Many non-human animals, at least vertebrates, are morally considerable and prima facie wrong to harm because they are sentient, i.e., conscious and capable of experiencing pains and pleasures;

Most aborted human fetuses are not sentient -- their brains and nervous systems are not yet developed enough for sentience -- and so the motivating moral concern for animals doesn't apply to most abortions;

Later abortions affecting sentient fetuses, while rare, raise serious moral concerns, but these abortions -- like all abortions -- invariably involve the interests and rights of the pregnant woman, which can make these abortions morally permissible.

Every animal has the right to life

due to Animal rights which is the belief that animals have an intrinsic value separate from any value they have to humans and are worthy of moral consideration. They have the right to be free of oppression, confinement, use and abuse by humans.


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