Do We Owe the Past a Future? Reply to Finneron-Burns

Published on 18 April 2023

Many of our forebears went beyond the call of duty, sacrificing much, to benefit those who would come after them. Elsewhere, we claimed that preventing human extinction renders those past sacrifices more worthwhile. We also developed the Unfinished Business Account, which together with the first claim implies that we wrong past people by squandering their sacrifices, even though this failure is in no way worse for past people. Elizabeth Finneron-Burns has recently questioned both of these claims. This note responds to her criticisms.

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