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Were "Factor X" absent from human beings, all would be deprived of the "essential quality underneath that is worthy of a certain minimal level of respect" (Fukuyama 149). "Factor X" is the key factor in human beings that justify our equality. Francis Fukuyama categorizes "accidental characteristics" by skin color, social class and wealth, gender, cultural background, and even one's natural talents as nonessential, yet he states "we make decisions on whom to befriend, whom to marry or do business with, or whom to shun at social events based on these secondary characteristics" (Fukuyama 150).
During earlier periods in history, people believed Factor X only belonged to a certain category of beings, pertaining to "certain sexes, economic classes, races, and tribes and people with low intelligence, disabilities, birth defects, and the like" (Fukuyama 150), contrary to today's belief that Factor X equally supports the human race, yet accounts for a lower level of dignity for those not considered human.
Christians argue that Factor X simply originates from God. According to Fukuyama, since man is created in the image of God, it entitles him to a higher level of respect of the rest of natural creation. Pope John Paul II expressed "the human individual cannot be subordinated as a pure means of a pure instrument, either to the species or to society: he has value per se. He is a person. With his intellect and his will, he is capable of forming a relationship of communion, solidarity and self giving with his peersÃ¢ÂÂ¦It is by virtue of his spiritual soul that the whole person possesses such dignity even in his body" (Fukuyama 150). In other words, the ability for humans to express free will and forming relationships separate them...