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"Am I obliged to feel identical"

Why do you keep bringing that strawman to which I replied already? No one is talking about feeling identical.
They were not -precisely, they felt that it would have been them, but different (as in disease-free). Not identical at all.

"They would never forgive you, if you lied to them about that. I am a foster mother of two, btw."

Who's talking about lying, something I never do, much less to my sons?
As far as I know, I am the biological father. It's also not something I'd ever go and test as I find it completely irrelevant.
Hell, in our case it's even possible that the elder one has a different biological mother than we think -he is an IVF child and there is a possibility of mixing-up the embryos. If we learnt that it was the case, we wouldn't hide it. But it certainly would make no difference to me, as it would make absolutely no difference to me to learn that my father was not biological.

There is a chasm between not mentioning and adoption (in which case you are certain, by the way) and not mentioning an affair. If the fertility problem was solved because my wife had fun while I was away on business, well all I can say is I hope that she made sure he was HIV negative and that the earth moved for her, but I don't see that it would be any of my business. He's my son, period.

As to never forgiving, well, I happen to know someone who learnt at 30 that she had been adopted. Now, she certainly did not like not having been told earlier, but I saw her with her mother (her father is now dead, alas) and it's clear that forgiving did not take long at all.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Gandhi

by Cyrille (cyrillev domain yahoo.fr) on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 06:52:39 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Why do you keep bringing that strawman to which I replied already? No one is talking about feeling identical.
They were not -precisely, they felt that it would have been them, but different (as in disease-free). Not identical at all

Not a strawman. I am trying to grasp the implications of this (I am really trying!):

it would have been you, a different you of course. But you.

If it's a "different me", it's not me at all. There is only one see-the-trademark me, and that's me.

My mother told me if I had been a boy (God forbid), I would be Wilhelm (God forbid again), after my father. That's only lazy-speak for: if I had been a totally different person that has nothing to do with my identity, a male...

The claimant in your case apparently could fantasise themselves into being (reincarnated?) a totally hypothetical second child that might (or might not) have been born after s/he (or rather the embryo that developed into being s/he) was aborted. Bizarre. What if there hadn't been another child? (S/he would have sued to compel the parents to... really!) The judge must have been drunk. Was there an appeal?

You say you agree. (Now I probably should edit out "drunk" and so ;-) ) Can you tell me what that means for a hypothetical connection between that rubella embryo and me, because I think that ought to be the same, right?

Cyrille:

Who's talking about lying, something I never do, much less to my sons?

Or hiding the truth (that you know). It backfires, definitely. You are right, "never forgive" is too strong. I know a few cases though, and the extent of trust has never been fully restored, although there was some forgiveness. This is completely tangential, though.

by Katrin on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 08:32:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
"Can you tell me what that means for a hypothetical connection between that rubella embryo and me, because I think that ought to be the same, right?"

Well, you could say that thanks to the abortion you were born without a malformation.
Besides, the court never claimed that every child had to feel that way, just that this or those were entitled to say "I would have been born different".

I don't know whether there was an appeal, or even the result of the case. The crucial thing (and one that is a necessary conclusion of accepting abortion after medical tests) was that it was heard.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Gandhi

by Cyrille (cyrillev domain yahoo.fr) on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 09:16:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Cyrille:
Well, you could say that thanks to the abortion you were born without a malformation

It's not true. Thanks to my mother having had rubella at any time before she was pregnant with me, I was born without that malformation. No nexus with the abortion. (The abortion makes me child no. 6, not no. 7, and my parents must have been fed up with getting more children after they had six. So probably without that abortion I would not have been born at all. I wouldn't have been in a position to mind or to sue, though.)

Cyrille:

The crucial thing (and one that is a necessary conclusion of accepting abortion after medical tests) was that it was heard.

???  I accept abortion whenever a pregnant woman decides it is the right thing for her. I equally accept if she decides to have the child, no matter if it is healthy or not.

by Katrin on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 10:11:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The judge's ruling reveals a somewhat mystical but not incoherent narrative interpretation of human nature, which as Cyrille is arguing is in fact consistent with a lot of ordinary expressions used by ordinary people (such as your Mother saying "if you had been a boy you would have been Wilhelm").

That doesn't mean any of it is "scientific" but that is rather beside the point. We're talking law here. Which is about the social construction of social reality.

I distribute. You re-distribute. He gives your hard-earned money to lazy scroungers. -- JakeS

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 09:23:13 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Migeru:
We're talking law here. Which is about the social construction of social reality.

Thank you. Beautifully put.

by Katrin on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 10:13:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
... but you've got to wonder what he'd been smoking.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 10:39:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Nothing too potent, given that lots of people reason in the frame in which they can tell their son "if you had been a girl we would have called you victoria" without blinking.

I distribute. You re-distribute. He gives your hard-earned money to lazy scroungers. -- JakeS
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 10:49:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]
which summarises my thinking on the matter :

"Si ma tante en avait, on l'appelerait Tonton"

(If my aunt had balls, we'd call her Uncle)

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 11:17:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But he'd have had to be smoking something to not tell them to go talk with a psychologist about their issues and stop wasting the court's time.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 03:36:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think the dictator clones himself to get loyal army scenario also fits in this narrative. It also depends on the ability for the identity to span more then one body. Also the upload yourself and live forever thing.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se
by A swedish kind of death on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 01:00:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I have a friend who wrote up a scenario on the premise that there had been a "clone yourself to cheat the ballot box" scare. After which clones were disenfranchised and required to be genetically engineered with distinguishing features like tusks and green-tinted skin, so people could tell who were clones and who were not.

(The scenario took it as read that "cloning copies the person" is a bogus trope.)

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 03:52:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If it's a "different me", it's not me at all.

Mmmm, I'm not so certain. If you were to install a synthetic memory bank in the back of your head, you would be a "different you," but there would be sufficient continuity of identity, of what cyberpunk author Shirō Masamune called "ghost," that most people would still argue - rightly, in my view - that you would still be "you."

Given appropriate technology, you could progressively replace every part of your brain with enhanced, synthetic substitutes, and still retain sufficient continuity to qualify as "you," even though there would be nothing left of the original wetware. On the other hand, simply copying your brain architecture into an advanced neural net computer and then shooting you would kill "you," at least in most people's view.

What this suggests is that the relevant distinction is in terms of the degree of continuity, or the rate of change and the fraction of the body replaced in each step.

Under that convention, the children's argument in this case is wrong, because you have a 100 % discontinuity when you flush the embryo and plug in a new one. But it is not a completely silly argument that you could in principle replace the zygote with a different one, if only you could do it one cell at a time.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu Nov 8th, 2012 at 03:36:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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