The authors [George and Tollefsen] are probably wrong, however, to think about our natural kind as a “what” and not a “who.” Augustine and Thomas Aquinas discovered that each human being naturally exhibits uniquely or singularly free and rational personal behavior. So each person can’t be understood as merely a part of some political community or part of a species; we exist by nature for ourselves. That’s why the God of nature can’t be a “what,” as Aristotle thought, but a “who,” and that distinction makes sense even without faith in the actual existence of a personal God. Particular leaves and cows can be thought of as “whats,” or examples of species-specific characteristics. But that way of thinking doesn’t do justice to “whos” with absolute personal significance — and thus absolute rights. Even Aristotle didn’t do justice to our freedom, because he characteristically thought (and spoke) of each of us as being more of a “what” than a “who.”