Paul Raven makes a bold case against boosting animal intelligence:
Because they are not us. We are related, certainly, this much is inescapable, but a chimpanzee is not a human being, and to insist that uplift is a moral duty is to enshrine the inferiority-to-us of the great apes, not to sanctify their uniqueness. This […]
Alyssa Rosenberg highlights an issue I’ve discussed here before: non-humans allow a barrier of safety for our minds to explore controversial or previously unacceptable ideas:
But I wonder if we might have more day-to-day depictions of genuinely working-class and poor characters if those characters weren’t always human. Obviously, the aliens inDistrict 9 are a metaphor […]
An Australian man who had sex with a sixteen year old and was convicted as a sex offender is being denied the opportunity to use IVF treatment to reproduce. Here is the thing: sex offender laws are wildly disproportionate to the crime committed. Let me be clear: rape and harassment are traumatic and horrific behaviors. […]
I don’t think there is a direction the future is supposed to go, but I sure enjoy it when it goes the way I hope. A snippet from my post last summer “The Sci-fi Explanation of Why Gay People Must Be Allowed to Marry” in reaction to the ruling on Prop 8:
Ross Douthat expresses the “right to die” side of the paradox of natural death nicely in his rejoinder to Kevin Drum.
Well, yes: The slippery slope that I discussed in the column doesn’t amount to much if you don’t disapprove at all of people deciding to take their own lives. Absent that disapproval (and an […]
It’s here. You cannot stop a man that smart. You can only hope his reason penetrates the stammering fears of others. Pratchett on Peter, the subject of the documentary.
“So then is it a good thing? And you are trying to resolve these things. Because it is a good thing, I think, that in […]
Over at Science Not Fiction, I do a close reading of Pixar’s corpus and come out with the conclusion that WALL-E and Remy are stand-ins for non-human intelligence and the struggle for the rights of the person.
What makes these films so astonishing and the message so powerful is the story arc of the […]
Loathe as I am to post anything from the Singularity Hub, Aaron Saenz has a smart piece on the uselessness of Asimov’s famous Three Laws of Robotics (disregard the link to cult-leader Yudkowsky). I just had to borrow his photo montage of red-eyed scary robots.
Think of a child that is […]
George Dvorsky elaborates on what is a confusing concept: what do we mean when we talk about the “rights” of those we consider “non-human persons?”
While these animals may not be as intelligent or knowledgeable as humans, their cognitive and emotional capacities are sophisticated enough to warrant special consideration. These are self-aware and self-reflexive […]
Bioethics is controversial.
No one endorses the ideas or concepts explored here, not even me.
You will develop a strong opinion about something you find here. I want to hear it. Philosophy is a conversation.
popbioethics [at] gmail [dot] com
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