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Word Count: 724
Moral standing is the fact that a being be ethically considered for its own sake When we say that some beings have moral standing we say in a moral matter context that their well-being must be given some consideration To clarify it an individual has moral standing for us if when making moral decisions we feel we ought to take that individuals welfare into account for the individuals own sake and not for our benefit or someone elses benefit For example a doctor who seeks the physical welfare of his patients and believes that it would be morally wrong to treat them in an improper way If he believes this not because of any benefits he will get if he takes care of them but only because hes concern in his patients well-being His patients have moral standing for him On the other hand a farmer who looks after the welfare of his tree and believes that a morally wrong action would be to stop irrigating it or not taking care of it If he believes this only because mistreating the tree would decrease its fruit production where this latter is an essential source of nourishment and income for his family This farmer considers his trees welfare only for the sake of his family and not for the sake of the tree itself The tree has no moral standing for the farmer In opposite direction the tree would have moral standing for the farmer if he considers the trees welfare for the sake of the tree ie takes care of it preventing it from dyingMany arguments could be adopted to consider if non-sentient entities have moral standing or not Feinberg considered that only beings that have interests can be represented so as a fact only being that has interests can deserve moral consideration In fact interests Presuppose Desires or wants or aims These latter are not possessed by non-sentient entities but what is the difference
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