Personhood is a topic that bears legal and moral consequences. You might have heard about it in discussions of immigration or abortion. But even if those issues don’t relate to you personally, personhood is still an important topic for you. Your security and status in society require an entrenched concept of personhood developed over hundreds of years. Personhood relates to all rights, responsibilities, respect, citizenship, voting, and freedom.
The designation of personhood adds special significance to what would otherwise be regarded as a mere thing. The personhood designation says: [pointing to someone] That thing is not merely an object, but is a person. That means it requires special treatment and special ethical consideration – you can’t kill it and can’t treat it however you want, as you would a brick, or a computer, or a stuffed bear.