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JulianMorrison comments on Nonperson Predicates - Less Wrong

29 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 27 December 2008 01:47AM

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Comment author: JulianMorrison 27 December 2008 05:30:33PM 0 points [-]

This sounds like a Sorites paradox. It's also a subset of a larger problem. We, regular modern humans, don't have any scalar concepts of personhood. We assume it's a binary, from long experience with a world in which only one species talks back, and they're all almost exactly at our level. In the existing cases where personhood is already undeniably scalar (children), we fudge it into a binary by defining an age of majority - an obvious dirty hack with plenty of cultural fallout.

A lot of ethics problems get blurry when you start trying to map them across sub- through super-persons.