Something doesn’t necessarily have to look human to have rights. Arguably children, even after they are born, have limited rights. Further, our culture has argued that animals have certain rights, up to and including not being subject to cruel treatment. And this is for creatures we eat.
To better address your point however let’s consider a corpse. When a person dies they do not simply “die”, it’s more akin to shutting down. Various tissues within the human body live on, albeit briefly and by briefly I mean a matter of minutes to hours.
However, should that person be afforded the same human rights as you or I? Connective tissue within the body remains alive for upwards to 24 hours after death. That connective tissue is indeed human and it is indeed alive.
Should my hand be severed and kept alive via a complex process where the hand remains living despite being kept independently of me is it a human unto itself? Have I reproduced by an unorthodox means of fission?
A collection of cells do not a human make.
Perhaps the simplest way I can put this is that a car isn’t a car until you turn it on.
I may have been wrong on my timescale (fetuses can apparently hear at around 4 months) but my fundamental argument is sound.
Really? “A collection of cells do not a human make”?
Sorry, but that argument is unsound, mr-cappadocia. The combination of human sperm and a human egg immediately creates a new human being with the right to live. Any other collection of cells, like a severed hand, are still human (they have human DNA), but they aren’t a ‘new’ human. As we are now, our bodies are nothing more than a massive collection of cells. What makes us unique, though is our God-given spirit, which will live on for all eternity after our bodies return to dust. Since there’s no way of telling when the spirit enters the body, we must treat life at all stages of development as a human life worth protecting.
(you all are welcome to use that argument whenever you need additional support)