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About Myrtok

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  1. Myrtok


    Surely you aren't saying that an infant is somehow granted its right to not be killed by the fact that a parent or other volunteer agrees to sponsor it. Remember, I am not disputing a mother's lack of obligation to a fetus. I am simply trying to get an answer for why a fetus doesn't have a right to not be killed while an infant does. Please consider the following which may help to clarify my questions: #1 You have a right to kill an animal, assuming that animal isn't the property of another person, because that animal has no right to not be killed. #2 You don't have a right to kill my
  2. I don't understand why Miss Rand places such a high moral value on sex. Sex with a prostitute may indicate a lack of self respect in the john. Then again, it may have nothing to do with his spiritual or psychological values. He may like it just because it feels good in the purely physical sense. If you pay someone to give you a back rub, because the back rub feels good, you are not necessarily seeking to gain self esteem from the act of receiving a backrub from the massuese, nor is your choice of massuese anymore indicitive of your self esteem than your choice of any other service provider
  3. Myrtok


    Yet those rights, or at least the right to not be killed, apply to infants, who have, by their nature, no freedom of action in a social context. This is the conflict that is keeping me from understanding the Objectivist position on abortion. Infants are assumed to have a right to life because their nature is the same as a man, even though they haven't quite developed their faculty for reason. If an infant has a right to not be killed (though not necessarily any claim on humanity to keep them alive) then it makes no sense that a fetus wouldn't have the same right (though not necessarily any
  4. Myrtok


    Yes, and that is the problem. I get stuck before I get to the conclusion that a fetus has no right to life. I am well aware of that. However, as I have stated in several of my previous posts, I am not attempting to bite off the entire issue at once. I am taking it one step at a time. To determine whether any entity has a right to life, one must first determine whether it is, in fact, a living entity. Obviously, a dog is a living entity, but it does not have a right to life. There are other tests that must be applied, and a dog fails them. On the other hand, a rock doesn't even ha
  5. Myrtok


    I have asked myself this, and I have concluded that it is irrelevant. The tapeworm I mentined before, or any number of other parasites cannot exist outside of their host, yet they are living entities by Miss Rand's definition. They are not required to live and thrive outside their host to achieve that status. I can find no reasoning that would require a human fetus to exist outside the body of its host to gain the status of "living entity".
  6. Thank you Mark K. Those threads are very instructive. I will take my questions to those venues.
  7. Myrtok


    I don't believe that it can. A tumor cell is simply a malfunctioning human cell. To put a finer point on it, a tumor is not a living entity in the sense that an amoeba or a tapeworm is a living entity by Miss Rand's definition above. A tumor cell would be more analagous to the liver or skin cells of a person, which also are not living entities. I have read that article before, and I re-read it on your recommendation. I don't understand your assertion that a fetus is not an individual. It very well could be that you are using a specialized definition of "individual" which means some
  8. Myrtok


    Hello. I am new to objectivism. I can’t call myself an expert in any aspect of Oism, but I do have a good “newby” understanding of the underlying principles. I find myself able to easily internalize and understand nearly everything I’ve read from Miss Rand. That said, I am confused by her position on abortion. From my reading of Rand, and the couple of hours I have spent reading this thread, I can see that the main arguments in support of abortion rights are the following: #1 A fetus has no rights. (If this is true, then #2 is not necessary) #2 Even if a fetus has a right to li
  9. Yes, prisons are obviously part of the cost of running the government. I also understand (and agree with) Rand's argument that prisoners have rights, despite the fact that we take away or limit some of those rights when we put them in prison. Unless a prisoner has received a death sentence, the most basic right, the right to live, would still be held by the prisoner. It follows that some person or group of persons must then owe the prisoner either food, or the means to attain his own food. Who owes him that? "The government" is not a specific enough answer in an objectivist forum, since t
  10. Did Mrs. Rand ever write anything about the responsibility of caring for a prisoner? I've done some searches on the net and can't seem to find anything. It seems obvious to me that if we, through our government, take a man by force and put him in a prison, we then take on the responsibility for feeding him since we have forcibly put him in a situation where he can not feed himself. However, this would also seem to be a debt that every individual under that government owes to the prisoner, by virtue of the prisoner's wrongdoing. Such a collective responsibility to an individual is such a de
  11. I originally read something of that nature on this forum. Unfortunately, I can't find it now. Doing a normal web search I found this: http://sanseverything.wordpress.com/2007/10/24/from-ayn-rand-to-animal-rights-an-interview-with-henry-mark-holzer-2/ This is an interview with her lawyer. Be forewarned that he is also a prominent animal rights lawyer. So, take it for what it's worth but he said :
  12. Since being awakened to Oism, I'm finding myself watching for lessons in every aspect of my life. I enjoy an online game called Starsonata. I enjoy it a lot. I pay a subscription to pay the game, but I value the game more than the actual subscription price. Still, I don't consider sending extra money to the owner of the game. We have an agreement on the price of playing, after all. However, if I were to learn that the game was in financial trouble and in danger of shutting down, I would consider sending a donation to help keep it alive since I actually place more value on the game t
  13. Reasonable rules at the demand of its people. . .That is the key phrase. First, keep in mind that no law has any effect unless the government is willing and able to use force to, well, enforce it. Now, consider what you mean by "reasonable" when you devise a law to be enforced. If that law violates the rights of one man, then it is no longer reasonable, despite the fact that any number of men demanded it. Neither you, nor any number of your friends acting in concert have the right to use force on me, unless I've first used force on you or violated your rights in some way. Consider, do
  14. Yes. Since I am here to learn, I have no problem with adjusting my stance when I am taught something My example of 7 years old was based on a misunderstanding of Rand's definition when she describes her epistomology in Atlas Shrugged. (Start with the difference between a rock and a living thing, progress to the difference between all other living things and a man- the man must choose to live). I can see a two year old applying some rationality, but not choosing whether or not to live. To put it another way, I can see a two year old making certain rational connections, but not having the
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