Don Marquis- Why Abortion is Immoral

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What is Marquis’ argument for the impermissibility of abortion?
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P1: It is immoral to kill a being like me. P2: If P1 then killing a fetus is immoral P3: Abortion is killing a fetus. C: Abortion is immoral.
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According to Marquis, why is it wrong to kill adult humans? That is, what explains the wrongness of killing?
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It deprives them of their future. That is a very serious moral wrong. This straightforwardly explains why it is wrong to kill infants and children.
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Why is Marquis not committed to saying that active euthanasia is wrong in the way killing a healthy adult human is wrong?
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Euthanasia is a good killing. Killing for the good of the person being killed. That is so only if the person being killed does not have a future like ours.
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What is one serious problem with the sanctity of life theory of why killing is wrong?
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It is always wrong to kill. All killings are equally wrong. That’s implausible.
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What is one serious problem with the personhood theory of why killing is wrong?
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It is wrong to wantonly inflict pain on animals. Kant: That’s because it hardens one and makes them more likely to inflict pain on humans. But, why should it harden someone? It is wrong. Only if it is wrong independent of it hardening us towards humans would it harden us. If not, it would not harden us.
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Marquis says that his theory of why it is wrong to kill does not rely on the \”invalid inference that, since it is wrong to kills persons, it is wrong to kill potential persons also\”. Explain what he means.
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Killing persons is wrong. Abortion is killing a potential person. Depriving one of its future and all the experiences which come with the future is wrong. Abortion does that. No appeal to personhood.
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How does Marquis’ theory of wrongness of killing also explain the wrongness of wanton infliction of pain on animals?
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You are causing suffering. It has to do with how you affect one’s experiences.
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Why is it significant that Marquis’ theory explains the wrongness of wanton infliction of pain on animals?
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It is a complete theory. Any theory which cannot capture the wrongness of wanton infliction of pain on animals is incomplete.
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What is Kant’s theory for why it is wrong to kill animals?
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It hardens us. Makes us more likely to be inflict pain and suffering against humans.
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What is the problem with Kant’s theory?
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His theory is correct only if we assume that it is wrong.
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Why is it important for Marquis to show that Kant’s theory cannot be correct?
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He is not relying on the premise that fetuses are humans. Kant says that something is wrong only if it affects humans.
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What is the discontinuation account or theory of the wrongness of killing?
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It is wrong to kill because it discontinues life.
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What is one problem with the discontinuation account of killing?
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It does not distinguish between beings with futures like ours and beings who have bleak horrible pain and unnecessary suffering filled futures.
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Why is it important for Marquis to show that the discontinuation account of killing is incorrect?
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Abortion will not be wrong.
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What is the desire account or theory of the wrongness of killing?
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Killing it wrong because it goes against our desire to continue to live.
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What is one problem for the desire account?
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It is ok to kill someone who lacks that desire.
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Why is it that Marquis’ theory of wrongness of killing does not commit him to saying that contraception is wrong?
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There is nothing there who has a future like ours.

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