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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Adean Offline
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What is a person? - May 20th 2009, 02:06 PM

What should be considered a person? Should it be DNA? Should it be brain activity? Should it be a body showing awareness of itself? Can a person be a human being but not a person? Is there a difference between a human and a human being?

If it is DNA, is it wrong to have an abortion or to remove life support? Is it wrong to have the death penalty? Do you have conflicting views when it comes to a fetus and a brain-dead person?

If it is brain activity or awareness of one's self, do animals qualify as persons? When scientists did the rouge test on an elephant, the elephant touched her forehead. Is that elephant a person?

How should we legally define a person?

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  (#2 (permalink)) Old
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Re: What is a person? - May 20th 2009, 02:54 PM

Okay here I go. Yes there is a huge difference between being human and being a human being. I put human being and person in the same category so I'm going to use person from now on. A person is human, is capable of having thoughts and making decisions, yes even babies make tiny little decisions, of communicating, that doesn't always mean talking crying when one is hungry is communicating, those are the only three that I believe are absolutely nesscessary I mean there is other criteria, that at certain stages of life you may not have but as long as you have these three I believe you are a person/human being. Being human is completely DNA.

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Re: What is a person? - May 20th 2009, 03:05 PM

Self-awareness constitutes as being a person, as far as I'm concerned. I know that if I was in a coma with no chance of waking up, I'd want to be taken off of life support and safe the grief for my family.


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Re: What is a person? - May 20th 2009, 07:10 PM

I think all people are human, first of all. No, the elephant that touched its forehead isn't a person. My puppy is not a person (Ok, bad example, my puppy's ridiculously stupid). That's the easy part, for me, anyway.
The tough part of the question is "are all humans people? when does a human become a person? Is it possible to lose one's "personhood?""

It's important to remember that, in Canada, women were not included in the legal definition of "person" until the 1920s. I hope we can all agree now that women are in fact people.

Honestly, call me a religious freak, but I believe a "person" is a soul living in a human body. I believe that a fetus becomes a person on the 40th day after conception, like the Sages tell us. Everyone older than 40 days past conception is a person. Abortion then either destroys a body while a person is in it, or destroys the future home of a person's soul. I am also against the death penalty, becaue I believe our courts should not have the authority to put any person to death, regardless of what that person has done. The whole point of being human and having free will is that we can always choose to be better. The potential to stop doing bad things is always there. But if you really F it up, you have to be locked away for the protection of society.

I think the soul lives in the brain, so if someone is brain dead, I think their soul is gone, so it's OK to let the body die. Likewise, I think it's OK to end life support, because I don't think the soul ends with the death of the body.

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Re: What is a person? - May 20th 2009, 09:55 PM

Consider this

I watched pokemon today and when Team Rocket attacked, the only one I felt compassion for when they got hurt (in terms of pokemon) was meowth, simply because he could talk. The others, I felt no remorse because I felt as though they werent as intelligent...does that make me a bad person?
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Re: What is a person? - May 21st 2009, 12:08 AM

I think a person should legally be defined as a being with human DNA which is sentient. I do not believe a fetus is a person, and I do not believe a brain-dead human with no awareness of themselves is a person. As I don't consider them to be people, I have no issues with abortions or with taking brain-dead patients off life support.

I do believe it is wrong to have the death penalty, as in my mind it fits under the 'cruel and unusual punishment' category, and has no value other than as a means of revenge and self satisfaction. In addition, I don't think any government should be trusted with the power to legally kill it's citizens.

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but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by.
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If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life
that will live on in the memories of your loved ones."
Marcus Aurelius
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Re: What is a person? - May 21st 2009, 06:23 PM

Just for clarification, a rouge test is used to tell if a young child is aware that the image in the mirror is him or herself. You mark up a child's forehead and the kid will either touch his or her forehead or they will touch the mirror.

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Re: What is a person? - May 21st 2009, 08:23 PM

In my opinion, it's DNA. But, really Every human being is a person, in my eyes. Every person born is a human.

I do not think of abortion as wrong, as long as it's not a fully developed fetus. If it is an early abortion, then it's perfectly fine. A fetus is not really human, not until it is born, it is just a fetus, a bunch of cells.

As for the death penalty, well yes I am against it, but for some cases in is the best, the only, option.It's not wrong to have it, it has been around for thousands of years and will probably be around for several more years.

Brain dead, well that's another story. If they have a living will that says let them die, then let them die. If they don't, well it's the family's choice. My baby brother was born without a brain, but he was still a person in my eyes.

I don't think we can really define what makes someone a person, as everyone has a different view on that matter. Each to their own.

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