Presentation on theme: "“Why Abortion is Immoral” Donald B. Marquis Marquis holds that to resolve the morality of abortion it is necessary to first determine why it is that."— Presentation transcript:
“Why Abortion is Immoral” Donald B. Marquis Marquis holds that to resolve the morality of abortion it is necessary to first determine why it is that killing is wrong. Uncontroversial assumption: “It is wrong to kill us”
-Some faulty reasons against killing: The effect killing has on the person doing the killing. The loss others would experience at my being killed.
Wrongness of Killing Killing deprives one of all the activities, projects, and enjoyments that would have been part of one’s future. Killing deprives one of what they value now, would have continued to value, and what one would have come to value in the future. The infliction of these great losses is what ultimately makes killing wrong.
Analysis of the wrongness of killing Relies upon the notion of a natural property and not the derivation of an ought from an is. We begin with the assumption that killing is a prima facie serious wrong. Next a natural property is identified which explains why killing is wrong, given that it is wrong.
Naturalist account explains the wrongness of killing only if it does the following: Fits with our intuitions about the matter. There is no other natural property that provides the basis for a better explanation of the wrongness of killing.
Further support for this account of the wrongness of killing This theory explains why we regard killing as one of the worst possible crimes. Compatible with the idea shared by individuals suffering from terminal diseases that what makes their impending premature death bad is the fact that it denies them the future they would have experienced. This view is incompatible with the view that it is only wrong to kill being who are biologically human.
Wrongness of Killing (Cont.) This view is compatible with the notion that it is sometimes wrong to kill non-human animals. Does not entail that active euthanasia is wrong. The straightforward implication of this view is that it is prima facie wrong to kill children and infants. This account also entails that abortion is prima facie morally wrong.
Further clarification of Marquis position This argument does not rely on the idea that since it is wrong to kill person, it is also wrong to kill potential persons. This argument relies on the category (or set) of things which have the property of having a valuable future like our own.
Argument against inflicting of ‘wanton’ pain on animals It is prima facie wrong to inflict pain on you or I. The infliction of pain causes suffering and suffering is a misfortune. Suffering caused by the infliction of pain is what makes the wanton infliction of pain on me wrong. The wanton infliction of pain on animals causes suffering…and so on.
Concluding Observation Marquis does not hold that his position entails that all abortions are morally wrong. His claims is that they are prima facie very seriously wrong, and that the reasons for having an abortion must be at least as compelling as other reasons we would give for killing.