"The Potentiality Problem"


Human babies and cats have moral status, but harms to babies matter more than similar harms to cats. The potentiality problem is the problem of explaining the truth of this claim in a way that makes it compatible with the claim that early human embryos lack moral status--the explanation cannot be that potentiality raises moral status. I argue that potentiality has a particular significance that affects the way that babies matter morally, but does not affect the way that early embryos matter morally: potentiality does not raise moral status, but it does make some harms worse.

Last edited: "November 11, 2007, 07:28 pm"