If the field of Artificial Life (``ALife'') is successful, we will be forced to confront some difficult moral and philosophical issues which we might otherwise have been able to avoid. The ability to create new life forms as well as destroy existing ones will place a greator responsibility upon us. In addition, the existence of living systems within computer-simulated environments will present some new and unusual moral issues, as a result of the nature of computers and our control over them.
It is the purpose of this paper to stimulate some questions that we may be forced to directly confront in the future; this paper will not attempt to resolve these issues. It is the author's hope to encourage speculation about the moral role of scientists engaging in ALife endeavors, and to remind the ALife scientist that this research does not take place in a moral vacuum.