Note that while the label “FMS” comes from viewpoints that allow degrees of moral status, some non-utilitarian philosophers (Kant [GMM], Regan 2004) consider the same protection to be the one and only possible moral status. Another way to grasp the degree of moral status is not to vary the strength of the reasons, but which reasons apply. Instead of the three categories of reasons discussed above, an inferior moral status may include two types of reasons (a strong moral presumption against interference and a strong reason to help, but no reason to treat fairly) or only one (a strong moral presumption against interference, but no reason to help or treat fairly). This is, of course, consistent with other reasons for helping or treating fairly in a particular context that do not flow from the moral status of the being (see section 2.4). Utilitarians and supporters of utilitarian approaches often view the protection and promotion of interests, when understood as a prerequisite for conscience, as a central object of morality (e.g., DeGrazia 1996, p. 39). With such views, it is clear why the ability to have interests is crucial to having moral status. For some views, the ability to experience pleasure or pain (sensitivity) is a prerequisite for having interests, which is why sensitivity is a reason for moral status (Singer 1993, 57). Environmentalists, unlike utilitarians, do not assume that consciousness is a necessary requirement for interests, and therefore use the term more broadly. However, they do not explain why interests, interpreted so broadly, establish moral status. The problem, at least from a common sense perspective, of infant under-reporting in version 5.1 can be avoided while maintaining a common source of FMS. Accounts can be modified as follows: Sophisticated cognitive abilities or the ability to develop these demanding skills (without losing identity) are necessary and sufficient for the FMS.

In the literature, it is usually referred to as “potential” representation (e.g., Stone, 1987), although some authors do not use this terminology, but speak, for example, of the lie of murder due to the loss of a “future like ours” (Marquis, 1989 and 1995). Potentiality can also be treated as a reason for some moral statuses, but not complete, (Harman 1999, despite revisions in Harman 2003) or only as an amplifier of moral status (Capricorn 1992, p. 68). Views differ in their interpretation of potentiality. For example, some deny that a fetus that will die while still a fetus (for whatever reason) has the relevant potential (Harman 1999, p. 311). At the most general level, there are two ways of understanding moral status, or what others sometimes call “moral status” or “moral consideration.” In the utilitarian approach (see the history of utilitarian entry), moral adequacy (his preferred term) consists of incorporating one`s interests (e.g., the intensity, duration, etc. of one`s pleasure or pain) into the calculation that determines which action brings the greatest benefit. In the non-utilitarian approach, moral status means that there are reasons to act for the good of the entity or its interest, reasons that are in front of and may conflict with what would dictate the calculation of the best overall consequences.

The non-utilitarian approach is necessarily associated with two other ideas: acting unjustifiably against such reasons, as well as not giving these reasons proper weight in the board, is not only bad, but bad for the entity, and we owe it to the entity not to act in this way. Note that utilitarians could integrate these two ideas by claiming that it is due to entities with moral status properly integrating their interests into utilitarian calculation, and that an entity is being done an injustice if this is not done. But these two ideas are not relevant to the utilitarian approach. However, some animal rights advocates argue that animal welfare is morally important, not only for utilitarian reasons, i.e. minimizing pain, but also because animals have moral rights that should not be violated. They claim that animal rights are based on the idea that animals have interests, and that moral rights exist to protect the interests of all creatures, not just humans. Others believe that animals have a life of their own that deserves respect. Animal rights advocates conclude that in addition to being free from pain, animals are also entitled to protection of their interests or respectful consideration for their independent lives. According to Anderson (2004), the ability to mutually adapt to moral actors is a necessary (not sufficient) condition for owning rights (pp.

۲۸۷-۹). This appears to be a 5.3 type view. For example, contrary to the abilities described in 5.3, a rat could not have this mutual adaptability to most humans and therefore would not have the right to be killed by these humans; But the rat could still have this ability vis-à-vis other moral actors (human rat lovers, angels, etc.) and thus be able to obtain this right from these agents on the basis of additional conditions. If this capacity for mutual adaptation is combined with belonging to human society (which does not require a human being), then, according to Anderson, this is sufficient for a relationship that establishes the right to non-interference and assistance from individuals, although perhaps not as strongly as those associated with FMS (p. 284). By introducing the latter condition (belonging to the human species), such a view can establish FMS not only for infants and severely cognitively impaired people, but also for permanently unconscious fetuses and people. In addition, any non-human individual lacking cognitively demanding skills, which includes most (but not all) animals, does not have FMS. Therefore, this view explains quite well much of the common-sense view described in Section 1. However, this does not help support the claim that animals, trees, species or nonhuman ecosystems have moral status. Nevertheless, it is possible to reject certain aspects of this objection.

After all, we often treat people with potential differently than those without potential. We offer additional music lessons, music scholarships and create music camps for those who have the potential to become great musicians, while we do not do it for those who do not have that potential. Being a potential adult does not give you the right to vote, but it may give us a reason to act as advisors with respect to the future status and interests of children, educating them and preparing them to become voters until they grow up; It seems that children would be harmed if we did not prepare them in this way. In this way, we treat children differently than dogs that do not have the potential to become adult humans, even though none of them are now adults. And perhaps this unequal treatment would even extend to not taking certain acts (e.g., killing) that would lead to the loss of relevant potential. But this answer could only go as far as fetuses were concerned. In terms of the future, some argue that the loss of this potentiality is morally problematic only if the being is sufficiently psychologically connected to this future person, and a fetus probably lacks this sufficient connection (McInerney 1990). If so, there is another difficulty.

To see how, consider the main motivation for developing a report on the reasons for moral status assuming that healthy adults are the paradigmatic case. The motivation is to find a way to extend moral status to marginal cases in a way that takes into account the theoretical constraints inherent in the cases in question. The procedure is therefore to find commonalities between the cases or, if this is not possible, to connect the cases by philosophical ingenuity. But as described, the procedure risks skipping the crucial first step, which is to clarify and justify the reasons for moral status that are supposed to apply to healthy adult humans. In this dialectical context, he may seem commendable if his own argument shows a way to relate the paradigm to marginal fall. But, of course, this is only the case if the entire theoretical structure is in good condition – if one really has a good account of the reasons for moral status. There may be several ways to associate adult human traits with borderline cases. What we should ask ourselves is not whether they can be related, but whether the reasons for the moral status attributed to adult human beings are convincing, and whether the moral status of an outsider should in any case depend on the theoretical connection with an adult human being.