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Human Exceptionalism

Life and dignity with Wesley J. Smith.

Anti-Humanism Reaching the Highest Intellectual Levels



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I am striving to obtain the referenced Journal of Medical Ethics articles, but the abstracts alone illustrate how anti-human and human extinction advocacy is moving from the fringe into the intellectual mainstream. This article is in response to a book entitled Better to Have Never Been, by D. Benetar (apparently a professor from S. Africa). It is a very weak defense of human existence:
Benatar argues that it is better never to have been born because of the harms always associated with human existence. Non-existence entails no harm, along with no experience of the absence of any benefits that existence might offer. Therefore, he maintains that procreation is morally irresponsible, along with the use of reproductive technology to have children. Women should seek termination if they become pregnant and it would be better for potential future generations if humans become extinct as soon as humanely possible. These views are challenged by the argument that while decisions not to procreate may be rational on the grounds of the harm that might occur, it may equally rational to gamble under certain circumstances that future children would be better-off experiencing the harms and benefits of life rather than never having the opportunity of experiencing anything. To the degree that Benatar's arguments preclude the potential rationality of any such gamble, their moral relevance to concrete issues concerning human reproduction is weakened. However, he is right to emphasise the importance of foreseen harm when decisions are made to attempt to have children.
Nihilism is indeed running rampant.

It is worth noting that the Journal also published the Battin assisted suicide propaganda "study" and, as I noted in the San Francisco Chronicle, has previously published articles extolling non therapeutic human experimentation upon patients in PVS.


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