Potentials and burdens: a reply to Giubilini and Minerva
Beckwith (Francis J.)
Source: Journal of Medical Ethics, Vol. 39, No. 5 (May 2013), pp. 341-344
Paper - Abstract

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Author’s Abstract

  1. This article responds to "Giubilini (Alberto) & Minerva (Francesca) - After-birth abortion: why should the baby live?".
  2. Giubilini and Minerva argue for the permissibility of 'after-birth abortion1', based on two conjoined considerations:
    1. the fetus2 or newborn, though a 'potential person', is not an actual person, because it is not mature enough to appreciate its own interests, and
    2. because we allow parents to terminate the life of a fetus3 when it is diagnosed with a deformity or fatal illness because of the burden it will place on the child, parent, family or society we should also allow parents to do the same to their newborn, since it is no more a person than the fetus4.
  3. The author critiques this case by pointing out
    1. the metaphysical ambiguity of potential personhood and
    2. why the appeal to burdens is irrelevant or unnecessary.


Response to "Giubilini (Alberto) & Minerva (Francesca) - After-birth abortion: why should the baby live?"

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