Re: Self-ownership [was Re: Raising kids]

Darren Reynolds (
Tue, 26 Aug 1997 01:04:06 +0100

At 20:31 17/08/97 -0700, Robin Hanson wrote:

>To create is not to torture.


Perhaps to create is not *necessarily* to torture, but it can be.

I have heard teenagers say, miserably:

"I didn't ask to be born. And now that I am born, I am going to die!"

Some (though none that I have met) take ultimate control of their lives
from fate by killing themselves before fate gets a chance. I recently took
the decision whether or not to participate in the creation of a new person,
and decided that, on balance (only just!), I am glad that I was born. I
doubt that most give it a thought before they procreate.

Yet one man's torture is famously another man's pleasure, and there are
both prisoners in jail and politicians in the grave to prove it. So until
we figure out the right and wrong of the future, perhaps the past can offer
some advice: do to others what you would have done to yourself.