Category Archives: Personhood

A place to talk about what a person is.

Ethics – We Are Not Called to Determine a Person’s Worth

Note: This posting uses the Biblical Essay titled, The Value and Dignity of Human Life, by Chee-Chiew Lee, as she has made a reasonable attempt at summarizing what the Bible says about the worth of persons.[1]

The idea of a meaningful or worthwhile life has become an important consideration in medical decisions. When a patient has a severe head injury or stroke, it is not uncommon to hear, as part of decision making, “he/she will never return to a meaningful life.”  Even if such decision making is legitimate, it is fraught with difficulty because people often think differently about what is meaningful. … Read the rest

Abortion – The Simple Truth

The case against abortion is actually quite simple: Human beings have human rights. Human rights can only logically begin when the human being begins. Science tells us that a living, unique, whole human being begins at fertilization. Thus, abortion is an act of violence that ends the life of a developing human being. (Quote from Jonathon Van Maren’s book, The Culture War – to learn more about Jonathon and his book use the following link – [1])

All arguments for abortion simply attempt to dismantle this truth.… Read the rest

Personhood – What is it?

Why do I talk about personhood? Personhood has come to be part of the discussion of organ donation, abortion, and euthanasia. Why?

A basic definition of personhood is the state of being a person. This is important because we place special value, along with moral and legal rights and responsibilities, upon persons. So, when we want to attribute rights and responsibilities to certain people, or we want to take rights and responsibilities away from certain people, we can, in our arguments, attempt to show it is right to do so by attributing, or by not attributing, personhood to them.… Read the rest

Personhood – And the Assisting of Dying

Recently reviewing an essay on Organ Donation which I wrote in 1998,[1] I came across some thoughts  on the definition personhood.  How a “person” is defined plays a vital role in how we approach things like vital organ donation and assisted death.  Our society is rapidly moving to a definition of personhood that connects a person’s intrinsic value to their ability to think.  Those with less ability to think are considered to have less value and are more easily deemed expendable.… Read the rest