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Review of Beating Hearts: Abortion and Animal Rights

By Mylan Engel Jr.

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Abstract

In their recent book, Sherry Colb and Michael Dorf defend the following ethical theses: (1) sentience is sufficient for possessing the right not to be harmed and the right not to be killed; (2) killing sentient animals for food is almost always seriously wrong; (3) aborting pre-sentient fetuses raises no moral concerns at all; and (4) aborting sentient fetuses is wrong absent a reason weighty enough to justify killing the fetus. They also discuss strategies and tactics for activists: They oppose the use of graphic images by activists on tactical grounds, and they categorically oppose the use of violence by activists in either movement. In the present review article, I provide additional support for theses (1) and (2); I raise concerns for their defense of thesis (3); and I argue that their discussion of thesis (4) is incomplete in important ways. Finally, I defend the judicious use of graphic images and videos on epistemic, psychological, and pedagogical grounds.

Submitter

Katie Osborn

Date 2017
Publication Title Between The Species
Volume 20
Issue 1
ISBN/ISSN 1945-8487
Publisher Philosophy Department and Digital Commons at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
Location of Publication San Luis Obispo, CA 93407
URL http://digitalcommons.calpoly.edu/bts/vol20/iss1/6/
Language English
Additional Language English
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Tags
  1. Activism
  2. Animal consciousness
  3. Animal welfare
  4. Ethics
  5. photography
  6. sentience
  7. Violence