Whenever I get into a flame war I always find myself doing a little bit of a walk back when I’m done. Let’s just say I can get carried away and that’s not good. So in that spirit let me delve a little deeper into the whole “inherent moral obligation” thing.
An inherent moral obligation has to arise from an inherent property of that thing. The test for inherency seems straightforward – is it conceivable for the object to exist without this property? If so than it’s not inherent – but in reality it’s not all that clear when you’re dealing with something which is not defined very well.
Definitions! Almost all flame-wars end up on this topic. I try to take a strongly relativistic view of definitions: There is no “right” definition for a word; there’s only “right in context”. The context I usually adopt is “what helps you think about things more clearly”. This is why for example I reject both “War on terror” and “islamofascism”.
Ok, enough of that. The question before us was “how do you define a species”. Short answer: it’s hard. I’ll link to dues-ex-wiki. What do you guys think?