Animals, Handicapped Children and the Tragedy of Marginal Cases
Nelson, James Lindemann
Journal of Medical Ethics. 1988 Dec; 14(4): 191-193.
There are human beings whose psychological capacities are rivalled or exceeded by many non-human animals; such humans are often referred to as 'marginal cases'. R.G. Frey has argued that there is no secure, non-arbitrary way of morally distinguishing between marginal humans and non-human animals. Hence, if the benefits of vivisection justify such painful and lethal procedures being performed on animals, so is the vivisection of marginal humans justified. This is a conclusion Frey is driven to with 'great reluctance', but which he can see no way to avoid. This paper points out a feature of the condition of marginal humans unnoticed by Frey and his critics: such humans have suffered a tragic harm. It points towards an analysis of this harm, in terms of counterfactuals holding for marginal humans but not for psychologically equivalent animals....
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Nelson, James Lindemann (1988-12)
Critical Notice of Morals, Reason, and Animals: A Review of MORALS, REASON, and ANIMALS by Steven F. Sapontzis Nelson, James Lindemann (1990-09)
Lynn, Joanne; Teno, Joan; Dresser, Rebecca; Brock, Dan; Nelson, Hilde Lindemann; Nelson, James Lindemann; Kielstein, Rita; Fukuchi, Yoshinosuke; Lu, Dan; Itakura, Haruka (1999)