Re: Finding a definition of Human (was Re: Fetal tissue)

Michael Lorrey (
Wed, 04 Mar 1998 21:52:56 -0500

Arjen Kamphuis wrote:

> At 16:48 3-03-98 -0500, you wrote:
> >Max More wrote 3/3/98: <I should know better than to get involved in an
> >abortion discussion.>
> >
> >I, too, should know better.
> ><In this case, you are doing damage to the person who will exist. In the
> >case of abortion, you are preventing a person from coming into existence.>
> >
> >As I said above, these discussions rapidly get to an obstinate stand on
> >definitions. "Preventing a person from coming into existence" is a
> >definitional stance unconnected with reality.
> Now you are forcing your definition of what a human being is on us. Since
> we did not agree a fertilized egg is a human we haven't agreed on what
> 'reality' is.
> >The reality is the person in
> >question has been in existence since conception and that what you call
> >"prevention" is actually murder.
> Again, hold it! that's your reality. A 2 week old fetus is not a person in
> my book, it has the potential of becoming a person. Just like a highschool
> student has the potential of becoming a scientist.

As I've stated on this and the transhuman list in the past, my own position has
nothing to do with morals. I think that the average fetus is as human as the
average mental defective or lobotomized mental patient (or talk show watcher, or
telephone psychic friend addict). My position is strictly a matter of legality,
rights, and citizenship status. Since an unborn fetus has not attained any
citizenship status in any jurisdiction on the globe that the US has diplomatic
relations with (since you need to be born to become a citizen), then no fetus
presently has any political rights at all. Only when a child is born are rights
created that need protecting, as it is now a citizen of somewhere.

As adults, we all have the 'potential' to become citizens of any country on the
planet, but that does not mean that we should expect to live by the laws of any
jurisdiction we are not presently a citizen, resident, or diplomatically
recognised legal alien visitor. Anyone who wants to protect the internet from
zealots in backwater countries or states should feel the same way about this
issue. Outlawing abortion is just one more example of illegal extraterritorial
exercise of power that we all should fight against.

   Michael Lorrey
------------------------------------------------------------ Inventor of the Lorrey Drive
MikeySoft: Graphic Design/Animation/Publishing/Engineering
How many fnords did you see before breakfast today?