Societies with Alternative Structures for More Personhood?
By - koschei_the_lifeless
Are you talking about technologically 'uplifting' non-human animals to sapience or simply extending the concept of 'human rights' or 'natural rights' to animals?
Natural Rights is the primary thought. I can imagine “uplifting” might be involved, but it makes me wonder if that sort of breaks the concept of personhood.
What your thinking of is the concept of ethical Veganism. To abstain from the use of animals for labor or resources based on an understanding that, even though their lived experiences are radically different from Human norms, that their lived experiences are *valid,* and that (from a humancentric perspective) 'lesser' animal intellect does not justify or excuse enslavement and butchery.
Kinda reminds me of this: https://www.reddit.com/r/slatestarcodex/comments/avxuxe/the_cognitive_chain_of_being_a_new_approach_to/
Sentience as a spectrum rather than a binary trait, makes the most sense to me. Personally i believe sentience is valuable and should be preserved and expanded where ever possible, so i believe uplifting and interventions can often be justified. The idea of legally enshrining the personhood of non-human sentients only to leave them fend for themselves both in terms of immediate living conditions and long term evolution in the name of conservation strikes me as being a bit backwards.
Thanks. This looks amazing (especially when you start in on the comments). I’ll have to really read it is detail, but I love the details here.
It's a little tough to follow what you're looking for. I get the general idea but I guess the question and the parameters are muddled.
My thought goes to societies (ok mainly India) where you don't get in the way of sacred animals. They go along doing their thing and you have to just let them. They monkeys stole your lunch or one of them bit you? You have to just let them be.
Otherwise it makes me think of animal trials. They used to put animals on trial when they killed someone.
Basically giving the animals rights equal or in some cases better than a human.
Sorry about the unclear nature (I’m posting under a relaxed NDA, but I wanted to be respectful). I’ll be back with the specific species/situation once it is approved, but this was exactly the type of angle I was looking for.
If a creature is considered a "person" just as much as a Human is, why are they still be treated as an animal? Why would you conserve them if they're people?
My thought on this is that if they're considered a person, they should be covered by laws. Killing one isn't just poaching, it's murder. The habitat they live in is their home and is covered by property law, so destroying their habitat would be treated the same as destroying someone's home.
I think the biggest issue in this approach would come in the fact that, essentially, they can't communicate and aren't as smart as humans. You'd essentially treat these "people" as being mute and having some kind of mental handicap. My suggestion on this would be that there'd be a job in this society who are essentially caretakers for these "people" animals. They'd act much like caretakers do for the elderly, the disabled, or the sick, but they'd work to facilitate the needs of this class of "people." The "people" are fully in control of themselves, but they have a caretaker who works alongside them to help them do what they want to.
If there's a crime committed against these "people," such as their property being destroyed, then their caretaker can help facilitate them going to the police for help. If we're saying they have personhood, then treat them the same way you'd treat people.
This is the place where I end up most of the time (my thoughts overlap your thoughts here). It might be where I end up with the major change being that the “disability” aspect is less because the nature of the species (the human-level intelligence and those that are more like animals) don’t have to eat.