I defend a relational account of difference in the moral status between fetuses and newborns. The difference in moral status between a fetus and a newborn is that the newborn baby is the proper object of ‘parental responsibility’ whereas the fetus is not. ‘Parental responsibilities’ are a moral dimension of a ‘parent-child relation’, a relation which newborn babies stand in, but fetuses do not. I defend this relational account by analysing the concepts of ‘parent’ and ‘child’, and conclude that the difference in the moral status between fetuses and newborns means one may claim abortion is morally permissible while also claiming infanticide is not morally permissible, without inconsistency between the two claims.
- Embryos and Fetuses
- Newborns and Minors
- Moral Status
Statistics from Altmetric.com
Contributors Prabhpal Singh is the sole author of this article.
Funding The author has not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.