Re: Defining Human

Arjen Kamphuis (
Fri, 6 Mar 1998 16:40:37 +0100 (CET)

(sorry for eating up all this bandwith folks, and yes I realize it's not
nice to kick someone when he's down but I don't take lightly to being
called a nazi)

At 18:44 5-03-98 -0500,
>If so-called "rational" extropians cannot discuss the definition of human
>without resorting to vitriol, irrational ethical emotivism and kneejerk

I have never claimed to be either rational or extropian. I do however most
strongly claim _not_ to be a bigot, racist or nazi.

//snipped a rather emotional rant//

>As to what Roe v. Wade legalized, I'll stand by my original post, this is
>the law of the land.

Again, if you feel the US law making proces if failing for whatever reason
that's too bad (you may even be right - I can't tell), I suggest you go
into politics or something and do something about it instead of accusing
others of nazism and whatnot.

//snipped more references to nazi-Germany //

>The arguments for rape, incest, life-of-the-mother and fatal defects are
>rational, even if they prescribe tragic consequences. These can be worked
>out, jurisdiction by jurisdiction. But in America, they amount to roughly
>3% of all abortions. It is not rational to open the sluiceway to the
>culture of death to deal with small numbers of exceptional cases.

I guess the view from the Ivory Tower is still beautiful, how is anyone
going to distinction between:
"A 16-year old girl who was raped by her retarded brother but refuses to
press official charges and is 4 months pregnant"
"A 16-year old girl who claimes to have been raped by her retarded brother
but refuses to press official charges and is 4 months pregnant"

If one is allowed, the other is also and you're back at free choich again.

>As to moving to the Vatican, I don't think we can squeeze 5 billion people
>into a postage-stamp size country.

If you go there, most other people won't, and everyone will be happy.

>Do you grasp that you and your fellow travelers are arrogantly
>forcing your definition on everyone else, with the exception of the one
>ghetto you'll allow us, the Vatican?

Look pall, you can live anywhere you want as far as I'm concerned. And even
if you, your daughter or granma get knocked up by a whole soccer team of
down-syndrome patients no-one will force you to have an abortion. In most
countries society wil even pay for taking care of your children should you
become unable to do so. No-one will complain about the cost that you bring
to society when you exercised your right to have 12 children with
down-syndrome. Those children will be loved and cared for as long as possible.
However, if you get it in your head to interfere in any way with anyone
else who is excercising their right _not_ to have a child you'll be in big

>It is very intersting to see which of my points and questions go
>unanswered. The silence is deafening.

Often on this list that is the signal saying 'please shut up, you're noise'
Maybe the more distinguised listmembers are telling us something by
not-reacting, by not _even_ reacting when you accuse them of bigotry. It's
a proces called ignoring, you may have experienced it before.

>I don't count ethical emotivism as
>containing any answers, only personal expressions of feelings, and
>individuals who use feelings as a moral guide are little better than slaves
>responding to their masters' instruction of what *to* feel.

Well, it's a good thing that you keep track of these issues for us 'cause
being mere slaves to our feelings and emotions most of us are of course
totally unable.

>This goes unanswered:
>RJ: <What's wrong with commercializing all life, at all stages of
>development, including humans, intelligent or otherwise, conscious or
>otherwise? Just make all life into products in the marketplace, all custom
>designed for any use whatsoever? "If destroying it is acceptable," why
>would any use not be, living or dead?>

Because when you make a distiction between living organisms and consious
beings it is clear that the commercial use of the first might be
accepetable in some cases while we have no practical alternatives, whereas
the commercial usage of consious beings is totally unacceptable. That's
just my opinion.

>P.S. Thanks to Gene Leitl for pointing out the obvious re: future master
>races giving short shrift to lowly humans. I would add that we should
>expect them to be giving especially short shrift to humans who have
>exhibited a pronounced death fetish regarding the weak. Not a good example
>to our masterful progeny who may very well view *us* as embryonic.

Wich is precisely the reason you should start practicing respectful
interaction with consious beings who are not human in the biological sense.
50 years from now someone else might be at the top of the foodchain, they
could be fully _digital_, and they'll have web-acces to Exi archives. And
they will be aware of you utter disrespect for non-meat, non-analog
consious systems. Think about it.

Arjen (resident aknowledged-leftie/anti-communist/pro-choice-mountainclimber)

Arjen Kamphuis | Learn as if you will live forever. | Live as though you will die tomorrow.

Transcedo, the Dutch Transhumanist site: