Flawed def­i­ni­tion

Austin American-Statesman - - OPINION -

Re: July 8 let­ter “Tak­ing on a life of its own.”

The reader’s ar­gu­ment rests on his def­i­ni­tion of a hu­man be­ing: ra­tio­nal, moral, re­la­tional, pos­sess free will. De­spite the claimed sup­port from dic­tio­nar­ies and philo­soph­i­cal texts, this def­i­ni­tion of a hu­man be­ing is fa­tally flawed due to it be­ing en­tirely sub­jec­tive.

For ex­am­ple, cul­ture can eas­ily bear on what may be judged ra­tio­nal, moral and prop­erly re­la­tional. Ad­di­tion­ally there are a num­ber of philo­soph­i­cal and re­li­gious be­lief sys­tems that deny that free will even ex­ists.

This def­i­ni­tion of a hu­man be­ing is also eas­ily used by the strong to dis­ad­van­tage the weak. For ex­am­ple, at var­i­ous times it’s been as­serted that African Amer­i­cans and Jews (among oth­ers) lack one or more of these char­ac­ter­is­tics in or­der to jus­tify sub­se­quent bar­barous treat­ment.

Sorry, sir, your def­i­ni­tion (and thus whole ar­gu­ment) is un­sat­is­fac­tory. Try again? kirk StrozewSki

round rock

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