#187- February 20, 2020 A Conversation with Paul Bloom

 
Nhoj Morley
 
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Nhoj Morley
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20 February 2020 18:49
 

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris and Paul Bloom speak about the epidemic of child sexual abuse, the ethics of loyalty, eugenics, existential risk, the Bloomberg and Sanders campaigns, and other topics.

#187- February 20, 2020 A Conversation with Paul Bloom


This thread is for listeners’ comments.

 
 
TheBardUnshaven
 
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TheBardUnshaven
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21 February 2020 05:49
 

Great conversation, but it felt like a missed opportunity when regarding eugenics they started talking about dietary supplements and lead paint, as opposed to e.g. aborting fetuses diagnosed with Down-syndrome. That would especially have been relevant, since one of the Dawkins twitters storms started with RD stating it would be immoral not abort a fetus once such a diagnosis is known.

 
ImSeriously
 
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ImSeriously
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28 February 2020 13:05
 
TheBardUnshaven - 21 February 2020 05:49 AM

Great conversation, but it felt like a missed opportunity when regarding eugenics they started talking about dietary supplements and lead paint, as opposed to e.g. aborting fetuses diagnosed with Down-syndrome. That would especially have been relevant, since one of the Dawkins twitters storms started with RD stating it would be immoral not abort a fetus once such a diagnosis is known.

If anyone has watched Unnatural Selection on Netflix, they bring up the notion of eugenics that Sam and Paul glance off of here. If we could engineer away from dwarfism for example, should we? This was said of down-syndrome, deafness, and other conditions we would classically consider ailments to move away from if possible. It did get me thinking about the community these people see themselves a part of, and the unease of normal people who would seek to get rid of them. Sam’s comment on the primacy of hearing does hit the nail on the head. It was something like, “for such a core sense, it would seem immoral to deprive a new person of this sense, for the purpose of their inclusion into a cultural community.”
It’s tough to reason out, and there’s no apparent line where a disability is justified or unjustified if consciously allowed. It’s one thing to condemn parents who would select against their child being deaf, but what if they found out their child was to have perfect hearing? I don’t think any sane parent would intentionally select for deafness, down-syndrome, or any other disability.