Tim the Plumber wrote:
Ethics are a human concept. We use them to supply a basis for the regulation of our social interactions. We can, if we want to, apply them to other animals.
I think this is exactly wrong. My opinion aside, it's definitely contentious. Even if it were true,
It is, unless you can find some universal code written by someone other than a human.
the point is that an anthropocentric morality is misguided and wrong because it doesn't have any rational consistency.
It does as much as any ethical code presented so far.
There's no description of humankind you can give that doesn't either exclude large swathes of human beings (babies, senile elderly, badly handicapped) or include other animals.
Of course there is. the definition is "human" a member of the species homo sapiens.
If your defense is just: ethics should concern only human beings because ethics should concern only human beings, then that's no better than: ethics should include only white people because ethics should concern only white people.
Why is that exactly? The definition seems logical as it covers all species capable of reciprocating the ethical concerns.
To say that ethics is just something we create to supply a basis for the regulation of our social interactions is crass.
That may be your opinion, but it is clearly evidenced in thehistory of ethics.
There is something wrong about inflicting pain on beings, irrespective of reciprocity or self-interest.
Really? We should not perform surgery on any but humans to repair bodies or prolong life? The same for injections of drugs and vaccines. It seems there are problems with these definitions as well.
That's why people debate things such as abortion and euthanasia - even though they have very little impact on social interactions.
Really? I think there would be a much larger impact especially if euthanasia were considered more ethical ... especially those who may be determined to be candidates.
Ultimately, for secular ethics to be consistent it has to acknowledge some form of utilitarian principle: i.e. pain is objectively bad and happiness objectively good.
Assuming humans are not the only ones who can define themselves as being "happy", of course.