13 September 2007

Adolf Hitler was a vegetarian

At the end of the post I made late last night (or early this morning if you want to be pedantic about it) I made a comment to the effect that it didn't really matter that a few thousand hemophiliacs died because of dirty blood products because, after all, it wasn't like they were real men. Then today I stumbled onto to this piece written by Linda Chavez. What can I say? Peter Singer is at the forefront of the animal rights movement. My wife has his books. But, again, because we are "defective" and not really human not even Blacks or Jews or leaders of PETA see anything wrong with discriminating against or eliminating us. You can kill a hemophiliac baby, but don't you dare kill a chicken.


Okay, I've had a couple hours to cool down after writing the paragraph above. My wife pointed out that his comments might have been taken out of context, so I did a little research. Admittedly not a lot, but I tried to give Mr Singer a chance.

According to the FAQ on his web site he does indeed believe killing a hemophiliac infant because he has hemophilia (he says "a serious disability" on his web site) is ethically defensible. His reasoning is that an infant has no sense of its own future and is therefore, in his opinion, not a person; and therefore would less of a loss than an adult. What this sense of future has to do with it is beyond me. Once dead neither an infant nor an adult has any sense of past or present let alone future. (To be fair he does say that killing a "normal" infant would also be ethically defensible—just not as much as a "defective" one. ("Normal" and "defective" are my terms for his classifications, but I think they are accurate.)) Since this defective infant will cause his family to lead a less pleasant life than a normal one would they are justified in getting rid of the one to make room for the other.

In a few days, when I am a bit more rational, I'll try to present my feelings on the sanctity of life and the morality of killing, but for now I'll just say that one of the things he is forgetting is the possibilities. It is possible that the normal baby will grow up to be Charles Manson, and the defective one will grow up to be Richard Burton. (Back in the late 60s or early 70s Richard Burton, of married to Elizabeth Taylor fame, was the spokesman of the National Hemophilia Foundation, partly because he had a mild form of hemophilia b.)

1 comment:

  1. I read some of Singer a few years ago. He has some points, but ultimately I rejected his writing because he so often veers into just the sort of thing you are talking about here. How easy it is to wax philosophic on the benefits of killing others, when if he really had the courage of his convictions he would look to his own life, see that his footprint on the planet was not sustainable, and conclude that for the good of the species he needs to lessen his burden on others by dispatching himself posthaste. Oh, what's that Mr. Singer? You say you are too important to kill yourself? Well, the rest of society has determined that your opinion is not viable. Sorry. Here's some hemlock. Bon apetite.


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