---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: barry levine
Date: Thu, Apr 30, 2015 at 9:01 AM
Subject: re: Sofía Vergara’s Ex-Fiancé: Our Frozen Embryos Have a Right to Live
To the Editor:
Few people who haven't yet digested the "first mammal paradox" would argue with the statement that "every mammal has a mammal for a mother". Yet it would follow logically from that statement that mammals must have existed forever. Given that the Earth hasn't existed forever, we have a problem. The problem is that mind and language make bright line distinctions between one thing and another. But reality is subtler than that. One species shades imperceptibly into another, just as the molecules at a solid-liquid interface may be neither fully one nor the other.
And so it is with life. Few would argue that at e.g. 21, one is a moral agent with rights and responsibilities. But there is no bright-line moment when that happened. Not the 21st birthday, not the first word, not birth, not implantation, not fertilization, not when the ovum's component atoms were transformed from food to nucleic acids and proteins. If one is uncomfortable in so fuzzy a world, so be it. Welcome to reality.
Barry Haskell Levine