Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 25 (3):199-208 (2004)

Respect for human embryos is often defended on the basis of the potentiality argument: embryos deserve respect because they already possess potentially the features that in adults are fully actualized. Opponents of this argument challenge it by claiming that if embryos should be respected because they are potentially adults, then gametes should be respected because they are potentially embryos. This article rejects this reductio ad absurdum argument by showing that there are two different types of potentiality involved so that the transitivity of potentiality does not hold up in this case. Respect for embryos does not logically entail respect for gametes.
Keywords Philosophy   Philosophy   Ethics   Philosophy of Medicine   General Surgery   History of Medicine
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DOI 10.1023/B:META.0000040038.52317.08
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Phenomenology of Pregnancy and the Ethics of Abortion.Fredrik Svenaeus - 2018 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 21 (1):77-87.
On Potentiality and Respect for Embryos: A Reply to Mary Mahowald.Alfonso Gómez-Lobo - 2005 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 26 (2):105-110.
A Heideggerian Defense of Therapeutic Cloning.Fredrik Svenaeus - 2007 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 28 (1):31-62.

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