6 Reasons Why Men Can Speak on Abortion

The injustice of abortion is the free choice of a woman who sees it working towards her good. This has lead to the common call for men to remove themselves from the debate surrounding the injustice. It is, after all, a woman’s issue.

While I sympathize with the thought, it doesn’t hold to the light of reason. Women bear pregnancy and birth, as they physically and emotionally bear the sad experience of abortion. As such, they are certainly the most experientially trustworthy spokeswomen for the issue. But this pride of place does not exclude the male voice. Here’s why.

1. Josiah Presley.

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Men can speak about abortion because men are aborted. Is it wrong for Josiah — who survived an abortion with only a deformed left arm — to speak in favor of rendering illegal the cause of his suffering? It’s certainly a popular thought, that he should shut up over an obviously women-only issue, but he stands against all odds as a living, breathing testament to the fact that it’s not. It’s a human rights issue, and men and women hold the marvelous distinction of being human in common along, with the less-than-marvelous distinction of being threatened, maimed, or killed by abortion.

2. The majority of women are pressured into having abortions.

The study “Induced abortion and traumatic stress: A preliminary comparison of American and Russian women” published in Medical Science Monitor found that 64% of American women “felt pressured by others” to have an abortion. We can safely assume that some of the individuals doing the pressuring were men.

This is a crime, and it points to a reality glossed over by many in the pro-choice crowd. Men are not absent from the abortion debate in the private sphere, but will and do impose their desires on women. To remove the male voice from the public sphere won’t remove it from the private sphere. It will only reduce the number of men who hear, from their brothers, that abortion is wrong, and pressuring women into an abortion far worse.

3. Children — those human lives threatened by abortion — are under the care of their mother and father.

The logic of abortion would have us believe that a husband bends to his wife’s swelling belly, kisses it and sings a song to her dear cellular clump, which at some arbitrary time decided by his wife (and who knows when? That’s the magical part!) will become his child. This, of course, is stupid. Unborn children are the children of a mother and father.

There is no legal distinction on the duty of parents to their child made on the basis of sex. Every parent has the duty to provide his or her children with the basic necessities of life, including food, clothing, shelter, and necessary medical care. To do otherwise is child abuse.

Now if parental duties towards children have nothing to do with sex, how can the question of the very life of that child have everything to do with sex? Why are men exempt from duty towards their children before they are born?

The issue here is one of consistency. If we are going to say that the creation of new life is one that, for 9 months, is entirely the responsibility of the mother and entirely not the responsibility of a father, we have to come up with a really good reason for the father receiving the exact same amount of responsibility when the baby does pop from the womb.

It can’t be because he participated in making that new human life. He made it 9 months ago, and had no say in the discussion of its continued existence. We must base the responsibility of the father to his child on something besides creation.

On the fact that he is capable of direct physical contact with the baby? So are others. On the fact that he promised to take care of the baby (once it “became” his baby by virtue of leaving the uterus)? A man must support the child he didn’t “mean” to create with the woman he never liked. What then? Is sex an implicit commitment to being responsible for a new human life (after a 9 month delay)? But why, if not because — by way of sex — a man participates in making a new human life? And if that’s the reason why, we’re back at our primary problem: He participated in making a new human life 9 months ago. Why the delay?

We are left in a shamble of responsibilities, the existence of which have no origin.

4. Male abortionists.

I searched around a break down of the male/female populations of abortionists and abortion-performing doctors without luck, so I don’t know whether most abortionists are male or female. But the fact that there are male abortionists poses an interesting question. It is a woman’s free choice to undergo an abortion. It is a male abortionists free choice to perform an abortion. If a man can’t speak of a woman’s free choice that he could never truly experience, assumedly he can speak of a man’s free choice that he could experience. Thus men are free to enter the debate on abortion.

5. If this moral debate is to be sex specific, so must others.

If abortion is to be a women’s issue because it is a woman choosing to have an abortion, and men cannot know what that’s like, then an obvious problem arises. (It might seem like a ridiculous problem if you believe that the human life within a pregnant woman is not, in fact, a human life, and therefore that abortion is just, but suspend disbelief for a moment and imagine it so, that the position of the other might make a little more sense.)

Sex slavery is an injustice largely — if not entirely — perpetrated by men on women. It is a free choice made by men. This does not mean that the outrage over sex slavery should be limited to male outrage.

Now the differences are obvious, but they don’t change the fundamental truth here.

The victims of sex slavery are mostly women — of course women should protest! Well, the victims of abortion are often men. It follows that they should too.

But the victims of sex slavery are conscious of the injustice perpetrated on them, while the fetus is not! Then we arrive at the real question: Is an injustice only an injustice if the person affected by it knows he is affected by it? Can you kill a man while he’s asleep? Can he you suffocate a coma patient? Can you drink your friend unconscious then slit his wrists, for it is no injustice if the victim of injustice does not experience it?

That’s quite a discussion, but it proves something I suspected all along. Any discussion of whether men can speak on abortion will inevitably lead to and be decided by the question of whether abortion is wrong.

6. Abortion is wrong.    

The human person experiences good and evil as universal. Murder is not wrong-for-some. The fact that rape is a free choice does not negate our ability to protest it, even if we’ve never experienced rape. Abuse is not “complicated” and thereby above the judgment of those unaffected by abuse.

If you come to the conclusion that it is unjust for a human life to be intentionally killed in utero, it is impossible not to apply this realization of reality to the universe. Thus:

 

  • Anonymous

    Great article, but I was disappointed to see the AHA graphic at the end. That organization and its members are anti-Catholic.

    • Luka Alexandrovich Nevskyev

      No, we’re not. Some of our leaders are. They have said some hurtful things, of which they have publicly repented as an organization. I say this as an Orthodox Christian who was personally attacked as a heretic by some of the other members of the local abolitionist society. You have to forgive.

      Use of AHA materials does not show support for an organization but for the ideology of abolition, which is based on the Gospel of Christ, not evangelicalism or Catholicism or whatever else. The best way to prove their stances wrong is to go live out abolitionism resultant of Catholic theology.

      • http://www.facebook.com/marcjohnpaul Marc Barnes

        Word.

    • PottsnPans
    • lalamom

      I felt the same way about the AHA graphic. AHA *IS* extremely anti-Catholic, which does a huge disservice to Christian unity and unity of the pro life movement. Although, they’ll tell you that we Catholics aren’t Christian, and thus are incapable of fighting against abortion.

      23399_521246377908553_1087829857_n.jpg

      64928_4129781008350_1268046249_n.jpg

      • lalamom
      • Luka Alexandrovich Nevskyev

        I’m pretty sure that post was actually directed against me and something I said. That’s Toby Harmon, who has been removed from the position of administrator for quite rabidly anti-Catholic views. It’s one member out of thousands and growing. We must show forgiveness to anyone who hates and offends us. Toby’s views are not reflective of the organization as a whole.

        • Joseph

          It really dismays me that who ever has so much access to their fb page, and the author of their latest blog entry is whole-heartedly defending his position. I think everyone would be perfectly content to hear an actual apology… they don’t have to even say that they personally believe we are Christians, but at least say they apologize for bringing it up in the first place, and without reiterating the position please. I think their graphics are an extremely valuable resource in the battle of new media, and they can do, and I am sure have done, great work in this battle. But to use this venue to suddenly spout such divisive positions just takes the legs right from under us. Faithful Catholics, as they have said, have always been a huge driving force in the fight for life. To know this, and then completely disregard that unity, not actually apologize, and then play the victims of truth and claim “persecution” for the sake of Christ is, it is clear they really should reassess how much they really want to abolish abortion. I’ll admit that Pro-life events can be extremely Catholic, group rosaries etc. But they would not stand it if we used our pro-life pedestal to proclaim specifically anti-protestant positions. We all KNOW that we have differences, and for the sake of pro-life unity, it is not necessary to proclaim them from a pro-life platform. We are united by this cause. If they chose to start some sort of ministry with an appropriate name, they would not have this problem.

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/thecrescat Katrina Fernandez

      Yep. I am their current target. AHA is an awful anti-Catholic organization that cares more about being right than ending abortion. Marc, you might seriously want to reconsider that graphic. See here and here…

      http://www.patheos.com/blogs/thecrescat/2013/01/abolish-human-abortion-crazy-jack-chick-scary-anti-catholic.html

      http://www.patheos.com/blogs/thecrescat/2013/01/where-i-take-far-too-much-delight-in-responding-to-the-anti-catholic-group-abolish-human-abortion.html

      • Dan Li

        Well, it seems some of their (former?) leaders have such a bent. Hopefully the larger portion of their adherents aren’t so… hostile.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1421881925 Ishmael Ahab

        My friend also realized this anti-Catholicism of the AHA. They said that AHA is Christian (Evangelical) group and Catholics are not Christian. I am staying away from AHA because of that. It is hard to form a cohesive group wherein some people malign your belief.

  • franciswithwolvs

    Great article, but I was disappointed with something that has nothing to do with the greats points you made. Please hear my opinion on a totally unrelated matter. TOPIC DE-RAILED!

  • Mark Kaschak

    LOVE the way point 3 was written. Fantastic.

  • Claude

    I don’t dispute your right to voice your convictions, but this:

    If we are going to say that the creation of new life is one that, for 9 months, is entirely the responsibility of the mother and entirely not the responsibility of a father, we have to come up with a really good reason for the father receiving the exact same amount of responsibility when the baby does pop from the womb.

    That’s cute, “pop from the womb.” Right, easy as opening a bottle of champagne. And really? People say the father has no responsibility for nine months? Or rather, do they say: the mother has the exclusive physical burden of carrying the child for nine months and therefore the burden of decision as well.

    If women feel pressured to have abortions that is a problem for all concerned. But what can a woman expect if she defies the father and has the child. A society that loves paying taxes to support single mothers (especially minority single mothers!) and the long, expensive and difficult process of raising a child to responsible adulthood? Um, no.

    • Kullervo

      Does a father have a responsibility to care for and protect an unborn child or not?

      • Double_Up

        Yes. We do.

      • Claude

        Of course such responsibility should be encouraged, as I suggested above when I challenged Marc’s assertion that “we” think otherwise.

        • Tom

          Is it your assertion then that a man is responsible to care for and protect an unborn child, but should have no part in the decision of having an abortion?

          • Claude

            No, it isn’t, but I think the decision is ultimately for the woman to make.

    • Luka Alexandrovich Nevskyev

      Therefore the burden of the decision as well. Let’s see what that decision entails. It’s the decision of whether or not to dismember or chemically burn to death a human being. Any man that prevents his wife from murdering a human being has done good, in the same way that he would have done good in talking down an enraged male friend from murder. In a society where people are forced to pay taxes, I bear the burden of the poor. Since I bear the burden for the poor, may I go kill them to release myself of the burden (this very idea, by the way, is how the abortion movement got started)? Should I not rather love them, and help them as much as I am able, seeing their plight and need? Should not we as human beings apply this logic to all interactions, including the in-womb interaction between mother and child.

      We should work to create a society where having a child isn’t acting in “defiance” of the father. Your lack of love for your fellow man, that you may have some greater wealth or fleeting pleasure is not an uncommon one, but it is one that will destroy us all in the end unless it is corrected.

      • Claude

        You read poorly, presume much and have insulted me.

        Since Marc makes a point of consistency I alluded to the inconsistency of those who cry “genocide” only to cry “socialism” and moralize about the wickedness of women when it comes time to pony up some new taxes for child support services. Such rhetoric has become a staple of what passes for political discourse in the United States.

        • Tom

          And you are absolutely correct. We should not save these women and babies from abortion and then not provide for them as a society. That’s something we need to work on, on the governmental, organizational, societal, and personal levels, starting from the personal level.

    • olivia

      So, are you saying that a man should be able to demand that a woman has an abortion, and that if she “defies” him and has the baby that he should have to bear no responsibility of support?

      • Claude

        What on earth gave you that idea? But…there are many instances where the father cannot provide for the child. If he is unemployed or in prison, for example.

        • Guest

          I don’t know if Claude was saying that, but I’m willing to. That’s an equitable solution to the current problem of abortion being solely a woman’s choice.

        • Joseph

          The same can be said of the mother haha… If the mother is dependent on the state, you can be sure they’re going to get what they can out of the father (usually anyways)… I think even in prison, whatever he earns, or at least part, goes to some sort of child support.

      • Joseph

        The last paragraph of his is very easy to misread… At first I thought it meant that it’s of societal value for the woman to have the abortion, but he’s really trying to say that making the man suddenly responsible at birth is not a random distinction because that is generally when the child needs clothes and food etc.

      • Claude

        The CDC reported that 85% of abortions are performed on unmarried women, hence my concern with single mothers, a class that has become the scapegoat for a world of ills.

        It should go without saying that men should help support their children.

  • Thomist

    Remember that making abortions illegal (Section 1) would not end abortions. In fact, it would put women in more danger health wise. Sections 2 – 5 put the emphasis on ending abortion, not just making it illegal. Great apologetics here.

    • Alex

      False. Obvious example: Ireland. Abortion=Illegal. Maternal health? Better than the US.

      • Olivia

        Same for Poland.

      • Sam

        Except of course those that die because they can’t get an abortion, or try to get an illegal abortion. It’s possible that they have better maternal health (a very broad category, not necessarily relating to abortion) because they have better infrastructure, not because they’ve made abortions illegal.

      • Sven2547

        Tell that to Savita Halappanavar’s family. Death by Catholicism.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Gail-Deibler-Finke/1323550849 Gail Deibler Finke

          She didn’t die because she couldn’t get an abortion. That is simply not true.

          • Claude

            Alright, let’s hear the spin.

          • Sven2547

            …go on? Tell me how the horrible bacterial infection that killed her had NOTHING to do with the fact that she was dilated for DAYS, while the doctors REFUSED to treat her miscarriage because it still had a fetal heartbeat.

          • Claude

            So Gail, I thought you were going to tell us the real truth about Savita Halappanavar. You know an angel in heaven will cry if you lie.

          • John (not McCain)

            Liars burn in hell. Better be careful!

        • Thomas R

          One event doesn’t change the general facts or make a valid theory. And one event is usually a bad basis for policy.

          • Claude

            “One event.” She was dead at 31. How typical of anti-abortion rhetoric to lavish sympathy on a fetus but coldly dismiss the fate of a grown woman.

          • Thomas R

            That did come out colder than I liked. But there is a bigger picture here than her tragic case. Women in America, with one of the most liberal abortion regimes in the world, are much more likely to die of pregnancy than Irish women. Even if you think the Irish, or Polish, are under-reporting they’d have to be doing so by a factor of 4 (Poland) to 8 (Ireland) to reach American levels.

            http://hdrstats.undp.org/en/indicators/89006.html

            So it’s good you feel bad about this unfortunate woman, and the incompetent medical help she may have received, but it’s not really a sign of where pregnant women are safe or in danger. And an American woman dying of pregnancy is tragic too even if “she could have aborted and avoided the whole issue.” Making pregnancy safer, and maternal care better, is the issue or should be.

          • Claude

            If you mean to attribute the higher mortality rate for pregnant women in the US to the abortion rate, you will have to do better than that chart. I didn’t say a single thing about national abortion policies and safety, anyway (that was Thomist).

            No one would argue against making pregnancy safer and maternal care better. I think we’re all on board with that? But what you euphemistically call “incompetent medical care” in the case of Savita Halappanavar was actually theologically-driven negligence. The fetus was going to die regardless! It was criminal to let that woman die.

            If you are going to argue that God cares about every little fertilized egg then you had better have your apologetics for theodicy in order. Meanwhile the state should have no authority over the insides of women’s bodies. The US is not a Catholic monarchy no matter how much some of you appear to long for one.

          • Thomas R

            No. I think the high rate of maternal mortality in the US is mostly due to poverty, particularly poverty among those who choose to carry a pregnancy to term. Still the claim the Pro-Choice side makes that abortion saves thousands or millions of women is highly dubious. The vast majority of abortions have nothing to do with even the mother’s health. And modern nations with strict abortion laws (Ireland, Malta, Poland) do not have higher maternal mortality than us. Quite the contrary. I think it possibly doesn’t matter either way and if that’s the case restriction is about other issues. If you value the individual’s autonomy over everything than the Pro-Choice position works in this case. If you believe the life of every human, even the very small or very ignorant ones, inherently has value than the Anti-Choice position works in said case.

          • Sven2547

            You seem to be trying to link the legality of abortion with the mortality rates of pregnant women. Correlation does not equal causation. If Ireland allowed abortion, how would it spontaneously make life more dangerous for pregnant women?

          • Thomas R

            How would it make any safer seeing as they have one of the lowest maternal mortality rates in the world?

            Yeah there might be individual cases of being saved, but with abortion as a way to “opt out” of pregnancy possibly making pregnancy safer would be less a priority. Still I’m not, unlike many here, necessarily opposed to the law allowing an early termination of a pregnancy if the woman’s life is at risk. I’m just skeptical legalized abortion really does much to make pregnancy less dangerous and I think the evidence doesn’t really support the idea. I would need to see a study comparing nations of similar development with different abortion laws at least.

          • Pedro

            Whole countries ban abortions AND provide satisfatory women’s health: pro-life jibber-jabber.

            One woman dies because she was denied abortion: pro-lifes are cruel, heartless women killers.

            Yeah, I see your precise, unbiased logic #NOT

          • Claude

            Not much of a close reader, are you.

          • Pedro

            Nope, I usually drop it when I see too many fallacies in the first sentences. Time’s precious.

            Usually countries which ban abortion make exceptions (either on criminal nature or punishment of that action) when the mother’s life is at risk. If abortion is banned by law, that doesn’t mean at all that a mother, under such circumstances, must die (or get close enough), sided by law. In this case, if a woman dies in result of a denied abortion, you can blame the doctor’s judgment, or the health system, or the legal bureaucracy, or even claim medical neglect. But you can’t say that banning voluntary abortions bring about difficult medical situations demanding tough calls and death risk. Those are exceptions acknowledged by pro-life principles of abortion-ban laws in most countries.

            Since that occured in the US, you case weakens even more. You’re using the poor judgment of some people to rebuke a pro-life principle for something it doesn’t imply, under a legal system that doesn’t even lie on it. And there are people longing for “Catholic monarchy”? Longshot, man, hugely long shot….

          • Sven2547

            Savita was not the first, only the latest.
            And when your hospital kills someone in such a pointless and preventable way, you ABSOLUTELY should be reevaluating your policies. Miscarriage is not a rare thing.

            Going to a Catholic hospital when you have complications in pregnancy is like letting Jehovah’s Witnesses manage your blood transfusion. They simply do not have your best interests in mind.

        • John

          We’re not utilitarians here. It is always and absolutely wrong to deliberately and directly kill an innocent (e.g. a foetus or a civilian in war) for any purpose whatsoever; that is the sin (or crime, if it makes you feel better) of murder.

          Murder is defined as the killing of an innocent human individual. At the point of conception, we have an individual, an embryo, with its own DNA, distinct from both parents. It is very much alive, very much human, and very much an individual, and contains within itself the full potential for growing into a human being with complete mastery of his God-given rational faculties. There is, between conception and birth, no point at which one can point to as being the start of life, some sort of ontological boundary. Unless we use the criterion of the full actualisation of the foetus’ potential to become a fully rational, self-aware, sapient, sentient, etc. entity as the boundary between life and clump-of-cellhood (which, if anyone bothers to consider it, results in an absurd degree of allowance for infanticide), the claim that a zygote is not an innocent human individual is thoroughly illogical.

          In fact, up till Roe VS Wade, no one saw the need to contest this extremely simple fact. All Biology textbooks up to that point have seen no need to deny or question the obvious. And the next time you catch yourself referring to the entity in a pregnant woman’s uterus as a ‘baby’, consider the reason behind it.

          • Sven2547

            “Always and absolutely wrong”? Even when refusing to remove the DOOMED miscarriage will result in the death of the woman? You’ve got a lot of nerve calling my position “illogical” when there are now two dead instead of one. How can you justify that? Are you really that blind to common sense? Is the life of the woman really that worthless to you?

          • Sven2547

            Was it morally wrong to let Savita Halappanavar die? She was innocent too, you know, and the doctors’ inaction killed her just as surely as if they had put a scalpel to her throat. In fact, that would have been more merciful.

            When faced with the moral choice of one innocent death or two innocent deaths, the decision is obvious. Obvious for everyone except the morally bankrupt (which now seems to include Roman Catholics).

          • Benjamin

            If it were very much an individual, it would be very much an individual. It is not, however: it is quite plainly a part of the mother. Otherwise no abortion would be necessary; you could simply shoo the thing away. Saying an untruth over and over does not make it true; if this falsehood is the basis of your position, it behooves you to reevaluate it.

          • Zach Anderson

            It IS very much an individual. It is a unique organism that had never existed before the moment of conception, a unique HUMAN organism. It isn’t a part of of the mother, but rather a product of its mother and father. What is untrue about such a proposition that a zygote, fetus, embryo, infant, toddler, adolescent, teenager, adult, or elder is a unique human being that has a right to life?

          • Benjamin

            That it’s new doesn’t make it an individual. Infants, toddlers, adolescents, teenagers, adults, and elders are not physically a part of their mothers. This is one of many reasons they, unlike zygotes, embryos, and fetuses (fetii?) are individuals; they do not have to be parts of another. When an embryo is MADE an individual, it becomes an unliving piece of tissue; this is because it never was, and wouldn’t have been for months.

          • Lynn

            The baby is inside of the mother, not a part of the mother. If you get into a car that is about to be crushed, can we justify doing so with you in it because you are part of the car?

            Your position leads to some rather tortured logic. Consider a set of identical twins, where one is taken early because of a medical problem, but the other is allowed to come to term. Now, although they have existed for the same amount of time, you consider one a baby and one a part of the mother? You can call them that if you wish, but how is one of greater value than the other? The unborn child may in fact be the more viable of the two, so arguments based on viability don’t seem to help you here.

            Furthermore, if you take the life if the twin that was delivered, you go to jail for murder. But you can be paid a handsome sum of money to do exactly the same thing to the unborn child, and we call it abortion.

            But we agree with one thing; repetition does not increase the truth of a statement. And your insistence that a baby is a part of the mother’s body is simply illogical.

          • Benjamin

            Furthermore, “innocence” does not apply in this situation. As an embyro cannot think, act, or feel (as it is not by an stretch a living individual) it cannot do any good or ill. It is “innocent” the way a rock or a patch of dirt is “innocent”. To apply it so renders the term meaningless.

          • John

            Sophistry, gentlemen, cannot replace philosophy.

            @Sven2547 Once again, we are not utilitarians. Durus est hic sermo. Put it this way: There are two people on a track with a trolley hurtling towards them (Philosophy students, please bear with me). The only way to stop it is to push an extremely fat man next to you in its way. Would it be morally right to do so?

            Murder, as I have said, is always and absolutely wrong. Even if you hated this fat man with all your will, had no way of sympathising with him, etc. Even if he was sleeping and would not feel the pain. Murder is wrong regardless of the consequences. Only morally bankrupt utilitarians (a surprisingly recent philosophy, given how infantile its reasoning is) would ever think otherwise, although I could understand your concern (but not agree with it). Your ‘argument’ is but a tirade of utilitarian rage and the common accompanying appeal to emotion. Unfortunately (and I am really sorry to say this), just because a truth leads to deaths doesn’t make it false.

            @Benjamin I’m sorry, but your ‘argument’ is so utterly moronic that I simply have to protest violently here. You seem to be claiming that conjoined twins are not two individuals but one, since one can’t “simply shoo the thing away”. This, as I’m sure you’ll admit, is false. They aren’t even distinguished by DNA, as mother and child are. Furthermore, you seem to be claiming that a baby is not an ‘individual’ until the umbilical cord is severed. Take a deep breath and a step back, sir.

            As to your other point, where, then, do you draw the line for consciousness?

            And, as a matter of fact, have either of you actually read my argument in its entirety?

    • Olivia

      I don’t think this is a very good argument. For two reasons. 1) you don’t allow something that is morally evil because someone is “going to do it anyway, we might as well make it safer” and 2) the number of women dying from abortions has risen steadily throughout the years due to a higher number of women seeking abortion Why are more women seeking abortion? Because it’s legal and they now see it as a viable option. The more surgeries that are performed, the more chance for a complication. Making abortion illegal will certainly see a higher percentage of women who seek abortion having complications, but the overall number of women with complications should be lower, because there will be overall fewer women seeking abortions. Fewer clinics, fewer doctors, fewer deaths of women and children. Fewer is better.

    • Mr. X

      Making theft illegal doesn’t stop theft. In fact, if you were legally obliged to give muggers all your money when they tell you to, there would be far fewer theft-related injuries, because nobody would need to get beaten up. Therefore…

  • Double_Up

    Quite true. If men can’t say anything about the baby for 9 months, why must they be forced to be 50% responsible all of a sudden? If a women has a “right” to kill the baby, why must her decision (not the decision to have sex, apparently) automatically enforce responsibilities on a man but not back on herself in the same breath?
    If you have sex, that’s the choice. After that any’ choice’ you make is to avoid consequences of the first choice. Drunk Drivers would love that option.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mary-Corcoran/819167453 Mary Corcoran

    Since we’re talking about fathers, let’s not forget those fathers whose children were aborted. I met a man who, along with his girlfriend, was ready to raise the baby they had conceived together. One day he came home to find that his girlfriend had gotten an abortion without him knowing. She killed their child; he had no say in it one way or the other. I can’t describe the look of pain and loss he had on his face when he told me his story. I cringe when people say abortion is a woman’s issue when I think of this man and the many other who can’t stop their children from being killed.

  • Benjamin

    Men are not aborted; abortions take place before they are men. Similarly, women’s wombs and the woman’s cellular clump within are not under the care of both the woman and the man near her.

    Of course, the fallacious equation of unlike things… a transforming part of a woman’s body and a baby… is at the heart of anti-choice rhetoric. Therefor I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that it’s also the fallacy at the heart of half of these. It’s stupid, but as so many people have hung their sense of self-righteousness on never admitting that, I suppose it’s fairly pointless to point out why you’re still wrong here.

    • Godfrey’s Dragon

      “Men are not aborted; abortions take place before they are men.”

      Oh, there you go again, reminding me that babies don’t have genitals until after they’re born.

      • Benjamin

        If genitals are all that’s required, the squirrel out my window is a man. Be clever before you try to sound clever

        • Joseph

          I say you must be a sort of troll. You know what he is trying to say. The sex is determined as soon as the child is conceived (or really even before if you want to be all particular about it… though I believe there are some rare occurrences where XX can develop into a male) But regardless… And yes, you are correct, squirrels are male and female. In case you didn’t know there are things called sex-selection abortions.. they’re big problem in India and China.

          • Benjamin

            So sorry, but “Man” means an adult male person, as distinguished from a woman or a boy. No man has ever been aborted. To state that they have relies again heavily on being unable to acknowledge time or change. If this article were titled “6 Reasons Why Embryos With Y Chromosomes Can Speak On Abortion” that would be valid. Although no embryo would speak on abortion, of course, as an embryo can’t think or speak, as it isn’t by any reasonable stretch alive. Still, at least it wouldn’t require that we throw out everything we know about time, development, and the English dictionary before it at least made sense hypothetically.

          • EpicusMontaigne

            Man can also refer to all humankind. Or it can refer to the male sex. Try to be clever when you try to troll. Get back under your bridge.

          • Benjamin

            If you’d quit trying to drag the world back to the stone age all the time, I’d leave you alone.

          • Thomas R

            In the Stone Age infanticide was acceptable and abortion likely was too if possible. It was more the AMA and science that largely lead us to realize that a human is a human even in the embryonic form. So really the Pro-Choice position is, arguably, the more archaic. The idea that what happens in there is a total weird mystery and it could be a duck, for all we know, before birth. It’s not though. It’s human from the start. (And debates about sapience and personhood are interesting if we want to define an alien species or robot, but in the real world we tend to give humans rights without a sentience or sapience test. Otherwise infants might have no rights at all)

          • Benjamin

            Your position has never been based on science. The “oh, it’s human DNA, NOW we must give it rights!” justification would outlaw chemotherapy, circumcision, and blood donation, among others. Science has lead us to realize that no living thing is being harmed before a certain stage of development; the “bunch of tiny humans swarm out of the penis and one lucky one grows to adulthood unless a meanie stops it” theory has never been backed up by science. That’s sentimentality and superstition, justified (though not very well) by what few scientifically verified facts fit into the pre-written narrative while the rest, which tell us quite clearly that more pain, suffering, and loss of life is committed every time you swat a mosquito, are conveniently ignored. A little knowledge, as they say, is a dangerous thing. Knowing exactly enough to justify one’s confirmation bias is a very, very different thing than being “lead to realize”.

          • Thomas R

            I’m thinking that maybe you’re not sincere here. I never said it’s just about having human DNA. An embryo, at a fairly early stage, has independent organs and a unique DNA signature that’s not just a mutation of the parent. (And for the record I think banning abortion in the first eight, or maybe even first fourteen, weeks is implausible in most modern nations and ours. For my Anti-Choice friends I’m not saying abortion that early is morally acceptable)

            Granted the popular Pro-Choice narrative is that the AMA was against abortion in the nineteenth century because they were racist, sexist, and wanted to control all medicine. That narrative is popular enough I’m not finding too much to contradict it, but I’m still skeptical of it. What they actually said seems to indicate at least some feeling they considered it murder or violence or dangerous. That they were racist or sexist, and that that provided additional motive, may well be so.

          • Benjamin

            It may or may not interest you to know that blood cells and sperm cells also have a unique DNA signature that’s different from the parent. How important different genetic codes are seems very case specific.

            But, I don’t think anybody’d seriously claim that embryonic DNA is genetically non-human; but that any tissue that’s genetically human is a life and deserving of protection even if at the expense of a living human’s liberty is a very different assertion, and one that even those making it back away from quickly in every circumstance but abortion. The difficulty of acquiring which, by sheer coincidence I’m sure, causes hardship to the women who are statistically for it, and causes no inconvenience whatsoever to the men who argue against it. Funny coincidence that, no?

          • Thomas R

            Yes I’ve dealt with Pro-Choice people before, but some mutation is different than a completely separate DNA pattern of a developing human. This also doesn’t deal with the issue embryos even have their own organs. They’re not simply a lump of tissue even if you’re wedded to that delusion. And lastly life of one human usually does way more than discomfort of another. Even if that human, such as a premature baby, is not “a person” by some criteria.

            And if you’d rather only women discuss this matter than let’s both of us shut up, but in the real world that’s usually not how things work. Designing of my wheelchairs, funding, etc is going to be by you walking people almost exclusively. At least this discussion involves men and women.

          • Benjamin

            Everything’s different than everything on a cellular level. The question is why people who’ve already made their minds up in complete ignorance feel like pointing out every one of these differences they can possibly think of relating to embryos justifies their completely ignoring all the vast differences between the same embryos and living, viable organisms. As you’ve dealt with pro-choicers before, I’m sure you’ve heard exasperation at the fact that the entire anti-choice platform is based on cognitive dissonance before, but that’s because it continues to be.

          • Thomas R

            Yes I’ve dealt with the cognitive dissonance of people having a Pro-Choice position before. Although you are a bit more consistent than some.

          • Benjamin

            Heh. To think of pea-sized boogery-looking mess of semen and stem cells that displays no living characteristics and can only be seen if medically extracted or sifted from urine as a human being isn’t something you have to learn? Alright, man.

          • Thomas R

            One: This is one of the most crass and juvenile descriptions of an embryo I’ve ever heard.

            Two: I have been clear that I’m not talking about the first 20 days of the pregnancy alone though that seems to be your focus. On looking it up in most of the embryonic stage it looks less human than I thought, but it doesn’t look like a sperm with extra stuff either. In any event it definitely looks human by the twelfth week, so you have to go into “what is a person” kind of philosophics, yet Roe allows virtually no restrictions before the 20th week. Make it more liberal than even Swedish abortion law.

            http://www.webmd.com/baby/ss/slideshow-fetal-development

            Lastly though size is practically irrelevant or we would give premature babies or dwarfish babies no rights.

          • Stephie

            Wait, what? Forgive me for being a couple of months late on the comments, but I’m not clear on your statement of “blood cells and sperm cells also have a unique DNA signature that’s different from the parent.”

            Dear, red blood cells *don’t even have DNA.* They don’t have a nucleus at all, in fact. And the only case I can think of when “leukocytes do not have the same DNA as the parent” is when the IgGs of B cells and the TCRs of T cells undergo recombination for the purpose of being able to recognize a variety of antigens. Which is not the same as really having different DNA from the parent.

            Gametes, such as sperm cells, do contain the same DNA as the parent – only half the number of chromosomes, to prevent polyploidy when joining with egg cells. Gametes undergo the crossing-over of genes in meiosis, but this is to promote genetic diversity (which is awesome and necessary).

          • Connor

            That’s a very shaky argument my friend. Sperm cells are haploid gametes that contain 23 chromosomes less than a full human. A developing embryo contains a full, completely genetically distinct, genome just like any other human. From the perspective of molecular cell biology, any organism possessing anything more or less than 46 human chromosomes is not human.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=10235831 Kristin Stark Curtis

            An XX zygote can NEVER develop into a male fetus. I assume you are making an ignorant reference to allosomal aneuploidy. It’d be nice if even 50% of pro-lifers had any level of higher education under their belts.

    • Embryologist

      Stop denying science.

      • Nikki

        …so those anatomy scans for determining sex are more like lucky guesses?

      • Benjamin

        Science says time doesn’t exist? Things don’t change? Embryos are babies and eggs are chickens and acorns are oak trees?

        Where’d you go to school, man?

        • Joseph

          Those labels are arbitrary in regards to the value of the human person. Just because we call someone a senior citizen does not mean that they are somehow of a different kind of human person, just as there is no objective difference between the child still attached to the umbilical cord and the one that has just be cut from it. Any point after conception in which you try to bestow upon the child the value of being a human person is completely arbitrary. Common language acknowledges this. I don’t remember ever hearing someone say they were coming up with fetus names, or their fetus is a blessing, or how much they really love that fetus. I don’t understand why this is such a hard concept to grasp. And yes, we view other non-human forms of life in a very utilitarian fashion. We value the oak-tree more than the acorn because it is more useful to us, or it holds some sentimental value. The acorn is still part of the same species, we just make language distinctions so we know we’re not talking about a 100 year old tree when we mean a seed. You mean to argue the rights of the unborn person… Until you acknowledge that there is where your beef is, you are just going to look ignorant. Make the case that the mother’s rights to autonomy trump that of the child’s right to be born, but don’t dance around the issue and pretend it’s just some blob of sperm floating around until the child is born. The least you can do is be like Pontious Pilot and acknowledge the act before you wash your hands of it.

          • Benjamin

            Would you argue that the difference between a living person and a corpse is arbitrary? Your reasoning breaks down quickly; capacity and development are of utmost importance.

            For the first span of it’s development it is exactly, literally a
            blob of sperm floating around. Stage of development matters, trimester
            matters, and at a certain point late in the pregnancy the difference between a preemie and a fetus is largely locational; at earlier stages, it is not. To state that there is no difference between an embryo lacking in feeling or life and a fully formed baby capable of living and feeling is objectively, demonstrably false, and that is why you have no legitimate point. The majority of induced abortions occur during the embryonic period; if anti-choice advocates were focused entirely on late-term abortions, their concerns would be understandable and worth addressing like adults. However, you seem to pride yourself on being unable to make these distinctions, and railing against all abortion in general means that you are in many circumstances literally advocating the rights of semen, and in the vast majority confusing a verifiably unliving clump of stem cells with an infant.

            I know you’d like it if I acknowledged you had a point and that time, development, and differences between unlike things didn’t exist, but I can’t do that, because they do. Blissfully ignorant sentimentality is a fine compass for making decisions in your own life, but it does not trump the real world, and it ceases to be harmless when you force it on women who don’t share it.

          • James H, London

            There are insufficient words in Elvish, Entish or the tongues of men to describe this folly.

            Are you suggesting that an embryo and a corpse are of equal status? You certainly seem to think so: “an embryo lacking in feeling or life”.
            “the first span of it’s development it is exactly, literally a
            blob of sperm floating around”
            Fascinating – you actually don’t know about fertilisation of an egg? How, O Bright, does semen constitute an embryo?

            The problem with arguing with eedjits is, they drag you down to you level. Elvis has left the building!

          • Benjamin

            Semen does not constitute an embryo; semen is, however, the first “baby” that anti-choice advocates claim needs protection via baseless whining about morning-after pills and other abortive medications that take place before implantation in the uterine wall. That’s why I specified “first” span.

            That you think your not knowing that makes me look bad is disappointing. Not surprising, but disappointing.

          • Joseph

            No, I have never advocated for the rights of semen. You know this is ridiculous to put upon us. Whatever position you encounter here regarding non-abortive contraception has nothing to do with semen being considered persons. Okay, you just used the word abortive to describe their effects. No one aborts semen. They abort the growing human being… before it even has the chance to implant. I’ll grant you that there is a great deal of miscarriage in this first period, but obviously you, and those who take them, don’t trust those odds and actively pursue abortive methods. We acknowledge that not every time these are taken there is an abortion.

          • Joseph

            I never said labels aren’t useless. It is as much of a blob of sperm as you are, dear sir. Once again, you really want to talk about rights. You are trying to say, that if the child becomes viable outside of the womb, it has more of a right to be born. You are saying that a right to life is dependent upon ability to survive without needing to be physically inside of the mother. Fine, argue that point. But you must acknowledge that at conception the child becomes a unique human being, and if not interfered with, will develop into a full grown human being, just as a toddler, if not prevented, will become a full grown human being. You say capacity and development are of utmost importance. I can think of no other stage in human life in which the human person is more alive than in the first months of their development. We grow at mind-blowing rates. We are saying that, especially in light of the age of viability ever shrinking, it is arbitrary to assign personhood at any time after conception. A fetus and a newborn are just as much persons, and a pre-teen is just as much of a person as an adult. The distinctions are not useless, but assigning more personhood to a human just because they are at a later stage of development is self-defeating, and puts a claim to intrinsic human rights in jeopardy. Is it easier to justify killing a human in the embryonic stage? Of course, because we don’t have that emotional connection with them, it is hard to visually see their humanity. You might even say that shifts in viability constitute changes in the mother’s rights over the child’s. Fine, argue that. You provide no definition of what “living” means. I assure you, the child in the womb filled with more life than you or I.

            You are the one who is being sentimental. You think the child’s right to be born is more dependent upon whether she currently looks like us. You can see the humanity of the 6 or 7 month old premie. That is why you affirm her life. We just take the logical step by saying that at conception she has every potential to become a fully grown human person. She has her own DNA, distinct from that of her parents. There is no longer any change to her intrinsic nature, besides being further behind us in development. A sperm will never become a person. An egg will never become a person. Once they combine DNA and begin division, she is now a member of the human race. From this point on, if unimpeded, she will grow into an older, adult member of our species. Nothing except for growth now distinguishes her from ourselves, anymore than the premie is distinguished from ourselves.

            “To state that there is no difference between an embryo lacking in
            feeling or life and a fully formed baby capable of living and feeling is
            objectively, demonstrably false, and that is why you have no legitimate
            point.” I did not know feeling was a requirement for status as a human person. Once again, you use life in a very subjective manner, one that I assume means some form of consciousness. I do not say that there is no difference, I am saying those differences do not lead us to conclude it is of a different species, with a different nature than you or I.

            I’ll put it this way, an aggressor using lethal force has forfeited his right to not be harmed by another while he is still attacking. You are trying to gauge the child’s rights based on her current condition. Fine, make whatever distinctions in rights that you want, but she is still a person, and fully alive at that. You miss the point when you spend your time dancing around her personhood, when you are really trying to make a point about her rights. From here, you can look at whatever factors you want, and come to a conclusion of when you think her right to not be killed trumps the mother’s right to control her body, whether you think that’s viability or whatever. I’m asking for honesty.

          • Joseph

            I am very long-winded… my apologies, I am working on being more concise haha

          • Good Catholic GIrl

            Perhaps but so well stated – not a word could be deleted. Thank you.

          • Benjamin

            No see, here’s the problem; I’m not a blob of sperm. I have blobs of sperm within me, and I can expel them in certain circumstances; they, however, are not me. Nor are they a baby; whether I deposit them in a vagina or other places I can’t really elucidate without being inappropriately graphic does not alter this fact; it is still a blob of sperm in a vagina, and indeed in a womb prior to fertilization and implantation, which is still not too early for anti-choice advocates to begin confusing it with an infant and calling for women to take second priority to it. At any rate, your opening statement is asinine.

            Your second point is little better. I’m sorry, but repeatedly stating that fetuses and embryos are people does not make it so, and assuring me that it’s more alive than you or I does little to convince me, especially considering how little critical thought you seem to give to your own assertions. Left to their own devices, some embryos will become babies, while some will not (Have you ever heard of a miscarriage? They’re actually pretty common, they just usually go unnoticed because they happen at such an early stage that nobody but anti-abortion nuts really notice or care) but in neither case are they babies already. Nor does rapid development of human tissue equal a person being alive: by your definition of life, cancer is more alive than any of us. And, like the embryos you mistake for people, is growing, changing human tissue; we do not consider cancerous tumors people because they are incapable of thought or emotion.

            You’re focusing on the wrong detail when you imply that personhood is arbitrarily assigned based on stage of development; it is the things that happen DURING development that creates an objective difference between a person and a non-person. Namely, the formation of a brain and the budding capacity for thought, reason, and emotion. When a person lacks this, they are no longer people. In medicine, we refer to these people as being brain-dead, and their bodies are kept alive only as incubators for organs to give to living people, because they are in every important way dead. This is not because of their stage of development… one does not enter a brain-dead phase of life at a certain age… but one can fail to develop this in the first place. As an embryo before a certain stage has failed to develop this. It’s not about how long they’ve developed because development time is all we look at, it’s about what they are at the time of the abortion; this is observable by development time, but that’s not the point by itself.

            You’re not asking for honesty, you’re asking to operate under false premises that make your conclusions less insane. These premises are, however, false. Human tissue does not make a human being. Circumcision is not murder, ear-piercing is not murder, and abortion is not murder. We are more than unthinking pieces of our mothers.

            But if you would like me to argue right to life for unliving things, fine. No such right exists. There has never been a right to life for unliving things. The rocks by the side of the road are not having their rights violated by never getting the chance to be alive; the eggs in my breakfast are not having their rights trampled by being denied the right to be chickens. The presumably large number of children you and I have failed to conceive by not going on rape-rampages are not having their right to live trampled on, because there is no right to live for things that are not alive. There is a right of the living to stay alive, and that is all.

            You will not concede the point and start voting pro-choice now, though, because the rights question is a red herring, and was never the issue; why you insist on confusing the potential of future people with existing people is.

          • Dan Li

            1) Cancerous tumors do not have within them the telos or directionality that would produce a formally rational/sentient being; in and of themselves they are directed towards continued replication without regard to normative regulatory mechanisms due to some form of defect, considering the whole system, they are directed at the inhibition of vital functions. Please consider the general telos of an embryo/zygote/fetus/infant in comparison; these creatures (like us) have a general telos toward the exercise of the rational faculty.

            2) What in essence makes a life outside of the womb more valuable than that within the womb, what makes a person a person, and why do we give it that definition? If it is thought (or rather the thinking, self-aware, rational function), consider the fact that when we sleep, we’re not exactly exercising that innate power at all times. Is it viability outside the womb? Well, then you deny the conceived right due to a perception of dependency on another sentient being, something which speaks more of happenstance situational ethics than any actual derived moral-ethical right. Suffering? That presupposes some form of self-awareness and an ability to feel pain of some sort; which yet again does not quite cover the comatose, the unconscious, nor the sleeping.

          • Benjamin

            Measuring “value” is even a step further than I’d take it; there is no life within the womb, at least not at the stage the vast majority of abortions take place, unless we mean a very nondistinct form of life, like pond water being full of life, or finding unexpected life in polar ice caps. That there are living cells is clear; but to call it a person is a huge stretch, and one fairly obviously arrived at for the sole purpose of taking over authority on the matter from the actually-involved. Let me pose it back to you: what makes human life more valuable than non-human life?

          • Dan Li

            In response to the first portion please tell me how a ‘worthy’ life exists in a sleeping or comatose baby, child, adolescent, or adult and how is the baby in the womb lacking?

            In response to your question, I’d have to say the inherent telos of a human life gives it value. (That being the distinct essence of a life that is directed towards the exercise of rational faculties). Would you please clarify what your own benchmark might be?

          • Benjamin

            The exercise of rational faculties, I agree. Life that does not think, I would say, is only valuable if it’s scarce or serves a purpose for other life that does (I like trees for shading the rest of us, for example, and for just bein’ pretty, but I’d save a neighbor first). Even life that does think, such as livestock, people tend to place very low value on if it’s not as smart as other life.

            As an embryo is incapable of thought, pain, or a will to live, it’s removal, living tissue or not, is entirely incidental, as it is not by any meaningful standard more alive than grass. And, relevantly, even LESS alive than the creature that died for your last chicken sandwich. (I’m assuming you’re not a vegetarian; if you are, I would have to concede that an anti-choice position in regards to abortion is at least consistent.)

            I also like Tony’s point above: if there is no will to live, the only thing a cessation of activity offends is the sensibilities of others.

          • Dan Li

            To make it clearer, I respect the directionality or tendency of a thing towards the exercise of the rational function. This is something all humans (as embryos to the moment of death) possess. The reason for this is that, yet again, while we are sleeping, comatose, or insensate (so, say while we aren’t dreaming, which we aren’t most of the time we sleep), we are *not* exercising our rational faculties anymore than a tree. In such a state a human is incapable of a will to live or actual thought. If the rational faculties (and not rational faculties as telos) are the standard, wouldn’t murderers with access to a drug that created an insensitivity to pain and sensation be free to stab their victim to death without moral violation?

          • Benjamin

            I feel like you’ve never slept before. If I cover up your airways while you’re asleep, you’ll put up a fight right quickly. You do not lose your will to live at any point during natural sleep. You could make a point about the right kinds of drugs or injuries, but that’d be more a point about why putting someone in a coma or drugging them senseless is itself an immoral act tantamount to the following murder.

            Besides, if one’s telos or “directionality” is what you’re looking at rather than the present reality, then murder’s fine because any possible victim was heading towards being dead anyway. This is something all humans, embryos, plants, and everything else alive, possess. This does not mean killing anybody and anything is not bad; the present reality is much more relevant than what one is directionally tending towards at a later date.

          • Dan Li

            If you were shot in the head there’d be no fight, and if you were rendered comatose, you’d be completely unaware as far as neurology has spoken on the issue. Therefore, since no exercise of rational functions occured, no moral was violated (given the previous standard of rational function alone). Furthermore, if you were asleep prior to drugging, or if you were drugged without the intent to kill (say as a form of pain relief for an injury or ill) no moral wrong would have been committed, since the intent behind the first affected no exercise of rationality and the intent in the second stemmed from taking advantage of a generally benevolent action.

            Telos generally arises from inherent intentionality, not simply accidental tendency. We have inherent nutritive, locomotive and rational tendencies; death is a disruption of those general tendencies, old age kills us through a corruption of general bodily functions.
            Even if death can be argued to be a part of telos, we as moral agents, would be upholding one part of the inherent telos over the others (nutritive, rational and the like), and while one would be fulfilled, the moral act against the others is an evil. By trying to delay and frustrate death, we uphold the others while not actually “destroying” death (since it can easily be fulfilled in the future). Yet again this supposes that death is actually part of the telos, and not an effective corruption due to environmental pressures.

            As for “the present reality is much more relevant” does that mean we can abandon our stewardship of the world and rapaciously consume all its resources for our own pleasures without regard to future generations? Do we spend all of our money in casinos for the perceived ‘good’ of pleasure instead of saving it for our children or our continued security and health? Your use of time as a simple mitigating factor seems to indicate a system of situational ethics instead of a ‘morality’.

            Just for information’s sake (I can’t remember if I recommended these to you earlier), I’d suggest reading Alasdair MacIntyre’s “After Virtue” & “Whose Justice? Which Rationality?”, as well as Edward Feser’s “Thomas Aquinas: A Beginner’s Guide”, “Philosophy of Mind”, & “The Last Superstition: A Refutation of the New Atheism”. MacIntyre’s books discuss and defend the conception of Virtue Ethics, while Feser’s are excellent answers regarding Telos & natural law.

          • Benjamin

            See, I gotta stop you there. At this point you’re arguing that some natural processes that we’re all headed toward are corruptions, while some natural processes that some are headed toward aren’t. The Telos thing was pretty iffy in the first place, but you’re basically arguing philosophical bents of the universe at this point. As I said to Joseph above, that’s a fine compass for making decisions in your own life, but it does not
            trump the real world, and it ceases to be harmless when you force it on
            women who don’t share it.

          • Dan Li

            Our cells (including a zygote) may have programmed cell death processes and triggers, but they are not inherently directed towards killing the organism itself. This is a fact. It is the directionality of the thing-in-itself that is what determines telos.

            “Corruption” occurs when anything from thymine dimers, mass genetic insertions and deletions, transpositions of genetic material through chromosomes, etc. give rise to varying phenotypic defects (ie anything from cancer to aging; also note the term ‘defect’ biology, whether or not one likes it, is filled with telos). Yet again, I strongly recommend Edward Feser’s book “The Last Superstition: A Refutation of the New Atheism” for a good summary of why Telos is inherent to a thing (like a potential moral actor) and not simply “read into it” or some form of subjective perception (ie why there is, in fact, a form of objective morality vs simple situational ethics).

            In regards to the “philosophical bents of the universe”, that is partly the point. Morality, ethics, and metaphysics all stem from philosophical conceptions. We *all* abide by some metaphysical law or scheme, and we all obey some form of moral law (*whether or not said moral law is explicit or implicit, and thus can either be refined and criticized or go on with uncritical presumption*).

            Could you give a bit more details on what would constitute a moral action, and what standard of morality might objectively exist? I’d also like it if you would answer the question of a person being murdered in their sleep while insensate.

          • Tony

            You talk about how pro-choicers label things to avoid the reality, but that’s actually what you’re doing by labeling an unthinking, unfeeling fetus a person. By calling it a person you can justify calling it murder. You can say genetically it’s absolutely a person–sure–or that it will become a person–sure–but you’re doing all this to ignore the basic fact of why murder is wrong in the first place: a person has a will to live. If a person doesn’t the only thing such a death could offend is our own sensibilities. It does not hurt the fetus.

          • http://www.facebook.com/cathy.landers.9 Cathy Landers

            The fetus feels pain. It tries to move away within the womb, when a needle is sticking into it, it squirms, it wiggles, it is ALIVE!

          • Tony

            At all stages, or late?

          • Pro chpoice always

            not till its about 5 weeks it even gets brain activity you idiot, so I highly doubt its running around its mothers womb crying out for love.

          • Chris

            I would recommend you refer to a basic biology textbook, especially if you’re going to try to present scientific knowledge that you seem to know little of.

            A developing human being is not a “blob of sperm” at any point. A sperm cell is a haploid gamete – a sex-cell with half of the number of chromosomes in somatic cell – formed by the male. An egg cell is also a single cell, which happens to be a haploid gamete from the female. Only one sperm cell and one egg cell can combine, or fuse together. This is referred to as the moment of “conception.”

            The result of the fusion of these two haploid cells is a single diploid cell (containing all chromosomes) called a “zygote.” This state does not last long, as it almost immediately begins to divide and multiply, which how multicellular organisms grow. Once cell division begins, we are talking about an “embryo”, a stage which lasts approximately 8 weeks. “Fetus” is simply a term to describe the developing unborn offspring of any animal that gives birth to it’s young. It is not a label of what kind of organism/animal it is.

            While the majority of abortions may occur during the first 8 weeks, the organism killed is still a living human being, with its own unique DNA and it’s own body. It is not a “blob of sperm” as you are advocating, and all of your arguments seem to use as a base assumption.

          • Benjamin

            Anti-choicers do tend to call blobs of sperm developing humans, though, as evidenced by their objection to things like emergency contraceptive pills which stop the process of fertilization itself. I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you’re not quite that bad.

            However, your assertion that the organism is a living human being with it’s own body is quite false. If that were true, abortions wouldn’t exist in the first place. You’re thinking of a “baby”. Again. It’s lack of it’s own body is kind of the whole issue.

          • Joseph

            You misunderstand opposition to abortifacients. Our problem is not killing sperm, it is the other effects that make the uterus uninhabitable, and so the almost embryo is aborted.

            Well, it is living… it’s not a walrus, and I don’t know about you, but have never heard of a woman giving birth to her own organs… so I guess it is a living… human being… with its own body and unique genetic code.

          • Benjamin

            Nope. If it had it’s own body, it could live in it. Rather, it’s a piece of the mother’s. If it weren’t, it wouldn’t have to be removed. This is not like a lot of steps of reasoning, here. Pretty soon you’re going to be arguing what a “body” is. This is getting pretty silly pretty fast, Joseph.

          • Collin

            Sentimentality as a compass?

            I’ll refer you to your own assertion, sir: “…but that any tissue that’s genetically human is a life and deserving of protection even if at the expense of a living human’s liberty…”

        • James H, London

          No amount of growth of an egg will ever produce a chicken. The embryo within an egg, however, is a different matter. Oh, and oak trees aren’t animals.

          Embryology tells us that humans have no larval stage. Any attempt to define a cut-off point for being human is utterly arbitrary.

          • Benjamin

            Not so; you, apparently devaluing thought and viability, define an objective cutoff point at fertilization (or, if you’re one of those anti-morning-after-pill types, at ejaculation), most of the thinking world defines an objective cutoff point at birth. One makes a lot more sense, but neither is arbitrary.

        • Rosemary

          Now whose making a”fallacious equation of unlike things”?!
          Did you somehow begin life without being a “clump” first? We all did, dear, and so did you. But you get to live to tell…

        • Thomas R

          And babies aren’t adults. They’re still human. Even the, likely, pre-sapient newborn babies are considered humans with certain inalienable rights. (As irrational as that may seem to you) A parent probably couldn’t even poison their premature baby with digoxin without legal consequences.

          • Benjamin

            Cha, exactly. Babies are different. I’m not comparing babies to embryos. Indeed, that’s exactly what these guys keep doing that’s so foolish.

          • Thomas R

            That one thing is different than another doesn’t tell us that one thing has no rights. It’s not even that you’re giving embryos less rights than babies, which I think I could see, you’re giving them none. The woman’s toe has more rights as it’s unlikely a woman could get her toe removed because say she wants to play a woman who lost a toe in a movie.

          • Benjamin

            But if a woman did want to get her toe removed, I’d think it was weird, and I might even think it was disturbing, but I wouldn’t think it was my place to stop her because I’ve more of a vested interest in her toe than she does. That’s what the anti-choice advocates do, though, which is why it’s not simply a harmless opinion but a very real assault on others’ liberties. The gender of the person assaulting these others’ liberties matters not in the slightest.

          • Thomas R

            That’s consistent, but this isn’t how any actual society works. No society gives an absolute autonomy to the body and all in it. Even a country like the Netherlands bans some drugs and likely bans, or at least severely restricts, some voluntary amputeeism. Still I will admit you’re being consistent if weird.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Andrew-Patton/592034163 Andrew Patton

          Yes, yes they are. Organisms change in size and shape, but not in kind.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000909947326 Nick Corrado

      If you’re going to be this particular about your language so as to avoid the point Marc was making, then it doesn’t have to be women’s wombs and women’s cellular clumps; it could just as easily, though with not so high a success rate, be girls’ wombs and girls’ cellular clumps. TL;DR you’re so wrong and this pointless clarification is at the heart of the pro-choice movement.

      But please, continue to make an ass of yourself over language distinctions you yourself still haven’t bothered to precisely define. Really, it’s priceless!

      • Benjamin

        Do please see the longer response to Joseph above; while I know that you guys hold to a bizarre sense of pride over your inability to think in complex terms, the difference between present and potential future is not merely a language distinction; your incomprehension does not alter the world outside your own skull, much as you would like it to, and embryonic development remains a thing.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000909947326 Nick Corrado

          Since you refuse to acknowledge the concept of “man” as a synonym for “male,” it seems to me you’re the one priding yourself over your inability to think in complex terms. I know pieces are tough to read when they might not mean precisely what they say word-for-word and letter-for-letter, but that’s what cognition is for. It’s what separates the men from the boys when it comes to understanding a text.

          Please, if you wish to wage war on the use of analogy, synonymy, etc., pick a fight with literature, not this blog.

          Anyway, you hint to an actual point toward the end. Yes, full-grown adult male Homo sapiens (specific enough for you?) are not born exactly as we see them. They are, however, born male, which is how this piece can easily be understood; as an example, I’m not an adult male, I’m a teenager, but the logic holds for my age range just as well.

          You need to get through your sku—excuse me, idiom there, sorry, wouldn’t want to confuse you—you need to allow yourself to consider the ramifications of the Principle of Charity. If you’re going to evaluate an argument, don’t immediately assume it’s making some infantile mistake like the fallacy of equivocation and forever imagine the author and readers of this blog as incompetent. Instead, understand it in its strongest interpretation (within reason). It is not difficult at all to make the stretch—whoops, sorry!—to connect a much more sensible and strong interpretation with the words you see before you. Much as you might like to exaggerate hairline distinctions between man and male in this case, you are not going to get far doing that. As I said earlier, you’re just going to make an ass of yourself.

          • Lazy

            A man is a fully grown male homo sapien. To say that a man is aborted when a male zygote is aborted, is simply false. It may appear that such a technical difference is insignificant but stating so tends to imply that they are the same thing. By doing so, you insult pro-choice logic as, undeniably in our society, ending another mans life is morally long.(and I’m sure what comes to your mind is “and ending a male zygote is justifiable?” with just a hint of rhetoric. Come on, so many people disagree on this)
            I pity you Benjamin, you should argue somewhere else. A website like this is bound to be full of bigots(not that everyone is). They miss your point about change, which I too do not fully understand. Are you saying that a zygote is not to be considered as a human because it is separated by time and change?
            And to the pro-life peeps, are you saying that a sperm does not have the capacity to become a zygote?(and please don’t answer “on its own”.Let’s not categorize life based on self-sustenance)

          • Whoops

            wrong* not long

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000909947326 Nick Corrado

            Lazy,
            A “male zygote” is only a zygote for about four days. Abortions are generally not done in the first four days of a pregnancy. Ergo what you said is “simply false” and I don’t have to engage with any charitable readings of your post. Also, you’re a big dumb dummy face. Or something. I haven’t fully grasped the obviously superior logic of you and Benjamin so the part about dropping insults for no apparent reason is still a bit beyond me.

            Mocking aside, you need to read what I actually said. The Principle of Charity stuff is important because I’m not going to seriously engage with any of you until you are willing to seriously engage with me.

        • Thomas R

          There’s no need to be so patronizing. I nearly have a Master’s Degree and going by standardized testing I’m in the 93rd percentile or so. Maybe not as smart as you, but I’m educated and so forth.

          Yes embryonic development is “a thing.” And going by it in week 7 there is some kind of a brain. Maybe not a “sapient brain” but your destroying a human brain not an undifferentiated mass. By week 11 genitals begin to form so we can more clearly refer to male or female. And that’s taken from the Mayo Clinic’s website.

          http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/prenatal-care/PR00112/NSECTIONGROUP=2

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=706222463 Carmen Rosa Hill

      Ahahahaha! Your first paragraph is so incredibly anti-scientific, I’m going to pee if I laugh any harder. What makes it so much funnier is how pathetically stupid your paragraph reads despite the pseudo-intellectual way in which you wrote it. Ahahaha! Try seeing an ultra-sound of a 12-week baby. Gender can be determined before then (as soon as 8 weeks), but typically at 12-weeks. 1) That’s how sex-selective abortions are done – guess you’re right about males not being aborted since they are the desired sex. 2). Abortions are done as far along as 6 months (24 weeks), and babies born as early as 21 weeks can survive with the right care. Are they and their 24 week counterparts cellular clumps? LOL.

      Wait. Wait! I have one question for you – Benji, the genius! – when, since you know so much – hahaha – does that “part of the woman’s body” become a baby to be born? Does it magically transmogrify after birth, or just before so it is no longer “part of the woman’s body”? And when you say “part of a woman’s body,” do you mean like an organ, which is permanent and can never be born? But you call it a cellular clump, so is it more like a cancer that will kill a woman if she doesn’t destroy it immediately?? I’m genuinely curious since you know so darn much about human anatomy and reproduction. HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

      Natural selection will surely favor you, Benji. BAHAHAHAHA

      • Benjamin

        So, okay, you can be obnoxious, which I’m sure is a source of a lot of pride for you, but can you also read? Because everything you’re taking issue with (I think, this’s pretty hard to read) has been gone over in the comments section at length. I’ll give you the cliffnotes version so’s you can understand it:

        1. “Man” means adult male, no man is aborted. Man does not usually mean XY embryo; no XY embryo has ever spoken out against abortion. HAHAHALOL

        2. Clearly a late term abortion is different than an early term abortion. This is kind of the whole point of what I’m saying. Time exists and embryos change with prenatal development; to confuse a 21 week fetus with an 8 week embryo is exactly the fallacious equating I’m talking about. Most abortions are done in the embryonic stage (prior to 8 weeks.) HAHAH ROFLMAO

        3. Generally you can tell when something is a separate organism when it can survive on it’s own. When you sever a piece of someone’s body, it ceases vital functioning and withers. (See: severed digits, organs, foreskin, whatever.) At a certain point removed fetuses have their own organs and brain activity and can survive on their own; at the stage most abortions take place, they wither just like any other severed body part, because they were never separate. HAHAHAHA OMG LOL

        4. It can indeed kill a woman if she doesn’t destroy it. Obstetrical hemorrhaging, eclampsia, obstructed labor, and otherwise unrelated conditions aggravated by pregnancy kill thousands of women a year. BAHAHAHAHAHA LOL

        5. What are you, twelve?

        • Thomas R

          1: I agree. Boy or male would be better.

          2: I suppose that’s true.

          3: Is a premature baby a separate organism? Leave it alone, without care, it withers and dies. Is a conjoined twin a separate organism? Can the “more sentient one”, however we define that, just have the other “scraped off.”

          4: The vast majority of abortions are not about any serious risk to the mother’s life. Something like 70% of them are not even about the mother’s health according to Guttmacher. The main reasons for abortion are economic, social, and educational. For whatever reason many feel/fear that they can’t get a job or education if they have a baby. This isn’t true, or at least it isn’t necessarily true, but it’s a fairly widespread fallacy.

    • Thomas R

      It would be more accurate to say boys or males are aborted. They’re not yet men. They are often fetuses, “offspring” or “hatching of youth”, with Y chromosomes.

      They aren’t women’s cellular clumps though, that would make them more like tumors or moles. Usually the aborted fetus or embryo has some level of independent circulatory or nervous system. If you wish to see them as pre-sapient humans you may, but you’re the one saying things fallacious and slightly deluded.

      • Benjamin

        Right. But women don’t speak on abortion because XX embryos are aborted; women speak on abortion because they’re the ones having their own bodies taken away from them by the entitled crowd for nine months. One of many oversights that make this list of reasons largely invalid.

        Also, the “cellular clump” description is lifted direct from the article I’m responding to. Context, man.

        • Thomas R

          Their body doesn’t magically disappear during pregnancy. Nor is pregnancy is some weird unnatural thing being forced on them. And this doesn’t deal with much of what I said anyway.

          • Benjamin

            No, but their liberty to do as they will does, especially if their will is to not be pregnant and other parties are telling them they have to. Whether it would happen in nature or not is irrelevant; tooth decay and heart disease are not unnatural things being forced on people either, but forbidding someone from going to the dentist or the doctor because another party values cavities or vascular plaque is still a really big violation of the first someone’s rights.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003794446781 Lucas Clover Alcolea

            Man you need help, comparing a foetus to cavities or plaque is sick even by the standards of someone who rationalises murder. Tell me when is this plaque going to be born, cry and suckle at is mothers breast? When is it going to take its first steps? When did this plaque acquire human DNA? When does it grow human organs? When will it replace us as our offspring? The fact is it does not have human DNA, it will never grow human organs, it will never be born and it will never replace us as our offspring. If you want to put it in scholastic terms, it is neither in its accidents i.e. organs, limbs etc.. or in its substance i.e. a body and a rational soul, human. Ultimately the problem with you and other anti-baby people is that you don’t have an answer to the question ‘What makes us human?’, so how can you even begin to approach the issue of whether a ‘foetus’ is human or not? Catholics on the other hand do, we are human because we have a body and a rational soul. Foetuses have a body no matter how primitive or how much it changes and the Church teaches they also have a (rational) soul from conception, ergo they are human.

          • Anon

            No one in the real world ever has, or ever will have, the “liberty to do as they will”, whether they are pregnant or not.

            Your liberty to swing your fist ends where anothers nose begins. Assuming the fetus is an “other” (genetically, it is incontrovertibly “other” from the mother), then your liberty ends where its life begins.

            Don’t like the way evolution set up the world, with pregnancy and pain and whatnot? Take the liberty of using birth control or having your tubes tied.

            But we don’t kill other humans because they are inconvenient to your lifestyle.

    • ejusdem

      Because comments are a terrible place to make an in -depth argument, please read a post I’ve written on this before:

      https://thekingsgoodservant.wordpress.com/2012/11/09/a-letter-red-as-scarlet/

  • Mitchell

    Marc, why use AHA they’ve been on a rampage of anti-Catholicism lately

  • Darren

    I am appalled by the stupidity of the author of this article. I’m not sure if this person is truly so deluded into believing what they’ve written or not, but much like many arguments that come from the conservative movement, they ignore reality and create a false target for their arguments.
    Everything about this article tries to suggest that men are being removed from the debate. Nearly the exact opposite is occurring. Instead of trying to eliminate men from the debate, the issue is that women’s voices are being ignored almost completely in the debate and they should be the forefront of the debate, with men being included.
    I would go point by point over why this entire article should be used as toilet paper, but I doubt many of you have even read this far and those who have are likely not of a mind to listen to me.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Gail-Deibler-Finke/1323550849 Gail Deibler Finke

      Women’s voices are being ignored almost completely??? What planet do YOU live on?

      • Steph

        The one where the entire U.S.’s House Hearing on Contraception panel is composed of white men? The one where the female half of the population makes up just a fifth of the lawmaking body? The one where the entirely-male clergy of the Catholic church passes judgment on women’s health issues? That’s the one I live on, and that women’s voices are being ignored almost completely is OBVIOUS.

        • Thomas R

          You’re making an incorrect assumption that a panel is the whole debate. Voters are, if anything, majority female. Pundits and journalists are fairly often women. Todd Akin lost to a woman. Women have a lot more say than you’re giving credit.

    • Claude

      I’ve read this far and encourage you to speak your mind!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Gail-Deibler-Finke/1323550849 Gail Deibler Finke

    I guess women should have nothing to say about rape, because they can’t rape so what do THEY know? The whole “men should not have a say” argument was invented to shut men up, and they should not fall for it. We are all human. Either something is okay to do or it’s not — and all human beings need to acknowledge that. But in any case, I’m a woman and I know very well that abortion is wrong. Millions of pro-life people, including leaders of the movement, are women. So there is no united “woman’s voice” on this matter.

  • Piper Maria Davenport

    I used to a “feminist” before I gave my life to Jesus Christ, Son of Nazarene. In the 2 years since, I have “evolved” on a lot of issues. This article makes me realize how ignorant I’ve been. Thank you for sharing! P

    • Steph

      Yeah, I used to think that equal rights and societal improvement were important, but then I gave up and started to comfort myself with whatever mythology involved me living forever too. High five, sister!

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003794446781 Lucas Clover Alcolea

        Men and women have never been more equal ,and yet certain women still aren’t getting where they want, strange no? Perhaps its time the feminist movement accepted reality instead of living in a fantasy world where men and women are the same, men and women are biologically and psychogically and yes, spiritually different, they will be good and bad at different things. Making men and women equal by trying to make them the same and ignoring the inherent differences between them is doomed to failure. People often go on and on and on about the glass ceiling to show that women are discriminated against and yet a study reported here http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/9754245/Pay-gap-is-fault-of-women-who-do-not-ask-for-a-raise-without-being-told-to.html suggests its because women don’t ask for a pay rise…

        As for societal improvement, wheres the improvement? Widespread use of drugs, abuse of alcohol, prostitution, depression, suicide, rapes, murders, abortion, euthanasia (voluntary and otherwise as several thousand deaths every year in the netherlands are due to involuntary euthanasia) etc…. Sorry but by no reasonable standard is our society good.

        As for mythology, I’ll take the ‘mythology’ proven by logic and miracles over the one ‘proven’ by nothing but human bias and self-denial.

      • Anon

        Wow, you sure read deep into the comments of a blog on a “mythology” you don’t believe in. Have nothing better to do with your time?

        Do you go to the Pokemon forums and yell “POKEMON AREN’T REAL!” too?

  • Mike L

    Actually, I think the strongest reason is that if you limit discussion on a topic to those who freely choose it than only men could speak about rape. Only whites could speak against slavery in the US prior to its abolition. Only gun owners could speak against Sandy Hook. Only Chinese women could speak against the one child policy…

    • Anon

      Gun owners had as much to do with Sandy Hook as FPS video game players: that is, nothing whatsoever. Might as well ask the people who drank the same brand of soda or wore the same brand of shoes as Adam Lanza did what they thought of Sandy Hook.

  • ValPas

    This article is simply a rehashing of age-old arguments about why males should control women and their bodies. The fetus is part of a woman’s body until it’s born.

    • odgie

      and your comment is simply a rehashing of the age-old ad hominems pro-abortion types use to distract from the issue. Care to back-up your assertion about the fetus being part of the woman’s body until it’s born?

      • Claude

        I don’t think you know what ad hominem means…

      • ValPas

        odgie, I suggest you look up the meaning of ad hominem. I was making no
        personal attack, nor was I appealing to emotions. In order to back-up my
        assertion about the fetus being a part of the woman’s body until it’s born, I’ll
        offer a little anatomy lesson. I trained as an anatomist and cell biologist and
        have taught anatomy, histology, cell biology, and embryology to medical
        students. Also, I have been pregnant three times and can speak from experience on that score, as well. I’ve given a more lengthy response to this article in a recent comment above. Also, I’ve elaborated on the biology of pregnancy at another blog site: http://joannevalentinesimson.wordpress.com/?p=208

    • Thomas R

      Even if that’s true we are all limited in what we can do with things in or connected to our bodies. A male conjoined twin can’t just have the other “scraped off” because he wishes. Voluntary castration is extremely restricted. And so forth.

      • ValPas

        Thomas R, there is no comparison between a conjoined twin and an embryo. Moreover, medical science will do everythingpossible to separate conjoined twins. I”ve considered biological issues in a comment above.

        • Thomas R

          It’s not meant to be an exact analogy. And I think there are times they won’t separate if they feel the chances of life are better unseparated. Or I’d hope so anyway.

        • Mark

          >>Moreover, medical science will do everything possible to separate conjoined twins.

          And they try with the utmost care to preserve both lives as they do so.

          Should we not do the same for mother and child?

  • ValPas

    In response to
    Thomas R, there is no comparison
    between a conjoined twin and an embryo. Moreover, medical science will do
    everything possible to separate conjoined twins.

    In response to
    odgie, I suggest you look up the
    meaning of ad hominem. I was making
    no personal attack, nor was I appealing to emotions. In order to back-up my
    assertion about the fetus being a part of the woman’s body until it’s born, I’ll
    offer a little anatomy lesson. I trained as an anatomist and cell biologist and
    have taught anatomy, histology, cell biology, and embryology to medical
    students. Also, I have been pregnant three times and can speak from experience on
    that score, as well.

    Let’s examine
    what happens after fertilization and in the normal course of embryonic and
    fetal development. I’ve elaborated further on this theme in another blog site: http://joannevalentinesimson.wordpress.com/?p=208

    Human
    embryonic development is a long, slow process, fraught with danger for both the
    developing organism and for the mother who carries it. Until the advent of
    contemporary medicine, many women died during pregnancy or in childbirth – approximately
    one woman for every six births. The death toll among embryos and fetuses was,
    and still is, even higher, between 30% and 50%. Most are spontaneously aborted
    because they are not viable for a variety of reasons, including genetic abnormalities,
    improper implantation, developmental mishaps, or hormonal imbalances in either
    mother or fetus. These natural accidents simply cause things to go awry; it’s truly
    amazing that anyone is born normal.

    Things start
    out with a fertilized ovum. The ovum is produced in the woman’s body, and the
    fertilizing sperm is thrust into it from outside. The union of an ovum and a
    sperm is called a zygote; the term conceptus
    is also used for the product of the union of ovum and sperm and its earliest
    stages of development.

    The ovum
    provides all nutrients necessary for the first week of development, and it
    contains the mitochondria that will produce energy for development; thus, the
    developing organism’s mitochondria will carry only the maternal genes. Mom’s
    huge cell is carrying the load here; it offers nutritional molecules and energy
    production. The itty bitty sperm simply provides some DNA. A great many new cells
    are produced by cell division follow fertilization, until the resulting conceptus
    is a ball of cells that looks rather like a Volvox of microscopic size.

    After several
    days to a week, the ball of cells implants in the uterus, and begins to burrow
    in, developing membranes that are designed to suck nutrients from the mother’s
    blood supply like a parasite. After the placental membranes have been
    established, only then does the embryo, itself, begin to develop. During those
    first two weeks of development, the vast majority of the cells produced will become
    embryonic membranes. Should the placenta be considered a human being? Should we
    keep it alive after birth? Should we develop vast warehouses to nourish old
    placentas because they were once part of a conceptus. Or should we bury them
    and give them gravestones?

    Perhaps I
    should have been more explicit in commenting on the actual article. To begin
    with, let me say that I would not support a late-term abortion unless it was to
    preserve the mother’s life or health.

    As for Item 1,
    that an embryo survived an abortion and became a male person, the truth is that
    the embryo was not, in fact, aborted. Had it been, no person like Josie would
    have been born.

    In Item 2, it
    may be true that some women are pressured into abortions by men. The women I
    know who have had abortions (two before and two after Roe v. Wade) had
    abortions because they thought their lives would be ruined if they had the
    baby; it would limit their future tremendously; and they would have no way to
    care for a baby in their circumstances. Personally, I would never have had an
    abortion voluntarily. I was lucky never to be in a situation where I needed one.
    I once went with a man who wanted me to agree that, if I got pregnant, I would
    have an abortion. I refused to agree to that. I told him that, if I became
    pregnant, I would leave him before I would have an abortion. Fortunately, that choice
    never came up; my birth-control method worked, and we parted, childless, after nearly
    two years of being together.

    In Item 3, I
    agree that the woman’s husband should have a say, but no one else. Since men
    have no existential understanding of what it’s like to be pregnant, they should
    not have any say on the issue of abortion unless they are married to the
    pregnant woman and intend to offer financial and emotional support after the
    birth.

    Item 4
    regarding male abortionists is a specious argument if I ever saw one!

    Item 5
    regarding sex slavery, this seems even more contrived than Item 4.

    The author’s
    bottom line is Item 6: “Abortion is wrong.” It’s not clear to me what is meant
    by the word “wrong” here. Does it mean incorrect? Does it mean morally reprehensible?
    Does the author’s declaration make it so? If I were to say that spanking a
    child is wrong, would that make it so? If I said that owning assault weapons is
    wrong. Would you agree with me? Or what about war? Is that wrong? Should I be
    able to try to outlaw it? Or would war happen regardless of the law? The
    evidence is that the abortion rate is about the same whether it’s legal or not,
    if contraception is not readily available. The best way to limit abortions seems
    to be to provide readily available, inexpensive contraceptives.

    • The Other Weirdo

      In Item 3, I agree that the woman’s husband should have a say, but no
      one else. Since men have no existential understanding of what it’s like
      to be pregnant, they should not have any say on the issue of abortion
      unless they are married to the pregnant woman and intend to offer financial and emotional support after the birth.

      Then I suggest that, in the future, women who by definition have no existential understanding of what’s like to have a penis, testicles or testosterone, should have no say on any issue relating to men’s reproductive issues. In fact, I would go so far as to ban all women from working in the medical fields that have anything to do with anything related to such issues.

      Also, Christians who have no existential understanding of what’s like to be Jewish should not have any say on the Holocaust unless it’s to blindly support what we Jews say. Also, lacking an existential understanding, they should never criticize Jews in any way.

      Men should also not be gynecologists.

      In fact, I would say that the only say any of us should have is only on subjects we have existential experience with. That would prevent the 99% from talking smack about the 1%. We should have no say on any subject military unless we’re on active duty or are veterans. If our government starts a war, unless we have existential understanding of prosecuting a war, we should just be quiet.

      I predict that these suggestions will go over like a lead balloon.

      Wait… I am sorry. I have no existential understanding of being a prophet, so I should have no say on such matters.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003794446781 Lucas Clover Alcolea

      And your reply is what, an age old rehashing of the same tired old anti-baby arguments? Face facts, once an egg is fertilised it has a completely unique DNA and develops in a unique way, in a few months time God willing it will be born and no one will then debate it’s a human child, so at what time did it magically become human? Whats the scientific criteria for this? When it has arms? A head? When we recognise it as human? When its viable? Recognition of something as human is irrelevant, either its human or its not, my ‘recognition’ of a white door as being black and vice versa changes nothing, the door simply IS and my thoughts on it change nothing. As for viability, that has nothing to do with anything, again either the ‘embryo’ is human or its not, there are plenty of ‘non viable’ people connected up to life support machines but no one claims they aren’t human, they just claim they aren’t alive. And what about people who are totally dependent on others for support? They don’t seem very viable to me, shall we just ‘abort’ them as well? It’s telling that you use words like ‘suck nutrients from the mothers blood supply like a parasite’, oh you mean like a parasite that has no choice whether it does this but was brought into existence by someone else, oh wait… and a parasite that will (hopefully) provides for its mother, look after her in old age etc… etc… and of course fundamentally that continues the family and ensures the survival of the human race. I mean really when people use the word ‘parasite’ in connection with babies in the womb you know they have issues.

      Your placenta argument is a straw man, the placenta is certainly part of the baby and the woman, connected as it is to both, but in no conceivable world is it THE baby, whereas it is THE baby that is killed in abortion, not some part which would naturally be disposed of anyway with no harm to the mother or child.

      As for men not being able to talk, uh no, babies are humans, they require fathers, they are our future, it is irrational to claim men cannot talk about the subject in light of these facts. They are not solely a mothers concern, it is nothing to the point ‘that men have no existential understanding of what its like to be pregnant’ either abortion is moral or its not, some magical ‘existential understanding’ (whatever thats supposed to mean) has nothing to do with that question. Men certainly can know all about pregnancy from the reliable testimony of others, just like most of us learn about almost everything else and just like all court systems in the world function. It is a dangerous fallacy to claim someone cannot talk about something unless they have experienced it, they can know about it through the testimony of others and they certainly can be in possession of enough facts to make a moral judgment on the matter. Or maybe you think only murderers can talk about committing murder? Or rapists about rape? After all the victims don’t have existential experience of committing these acts, only of suffering them….

      • ValPas

        Lucas, It is pretty obvious that a fetus becomes a baby when it is born. Then it has the potential to develop into a child, a human being. In your argument, you seem to conflate “human” as a generic condition with “human” as an individual being. Morality is a human construct. It was fashionable, in medieval theological discussions (all men, of course), to debate when the soul entered the body of an unborn. The general concensus that emerged was: at the time of “quickening” – when the fetus began to move.

        Men can “talk” about the issue of abortion all they want; most of them simply do not have the authority to make a decision in any specific case. As I said in the second segment of the blog referenced above, if a man is married to the pregnant woman concerned, and if he is willing to provide financial and emotional support to her for the duration of the future child’s life, then of course, he should have a say in the decision.

        I would feel a lot more receptive to anti-abortion arguments if I felt their proponents TRULY valued life on this planet – the life of ALL God’s creatures, such as dolphins and polar bears and ants and trees and all the glorious bio-diversity of the Amazon rainforest that is being destroyed as you read this. Indeed, human over-population is the greatest threat to the rest of life on this planet.

        • spookymulder8

          “Lucas, It is pretty obvious that a fetus becomes a baby when it is born. Then it has the potential to develop into a child, a human being.”

          –Nope, it’s precisely the same with all the genetic information makeup at conception, and there is literally no difference between the moments between exiting the birth canal. So it’s pretty obvious the child is human form the moment of conception. And scientifically sound since it posesses all the building blocks of genetic information. The stage of development is irrelevant otherwise accoridng to you, children born missing features, the lame and the blind are inhuman and the eugenists you support would elect to put them to death and historically indeed have and are also doing now.

          “Morality is a human construct… fashionable… consensus emerged…”

          –Bull! Going by that logic then if the pro-life movement gathers more supporters and has more children a consensus can build to make abortion immoral through majority vote. Or heck, maybe in the future it’ll be fashionable to make all women slaves subserviant to men. Blacks can be slaves to Whites. Or maybe we can have sex with little children. If morality is a human construct that is subject to fashion and the times, then anything is permissable and there are no absolutes. If there is no God to be the lawgiver, then mankind can do whatever they want. Hitler was probably just as moral so long as the majority consensus agrees with his views.

          “Men can “talk” about the issue of abortion all they want; most of them simply do not have the authority to make a decision in any specific case.”

          –Oh.. okay… if you… the moral relativist absolutely says so… eyeroll.gif At the rate that many in the world are choosing to predominantly abort their babies if its a girl, and that there is a rising number of boys in proportion to girls. Why not let the morality of this action be dictated by the fashionable times when there is a greater consensus of men?

          “if a man is married to the pregnant woman concerned, and if he is willing to provide financial and emotional support to her for the duration of the future child’s life, then of course, he should have a say in the decision.”

          –This contradicts your previous sentence given the specificity of this case. In any case, murder is not up for anyone to make any decision. Neither the man nor woman has a choice here except to choose between obligatory good and unnecessary evil.

          “I would feel a lot more receptive to anti-abortion arguments if I felt their proponents TRULY valued life on this planet – the life of ALL God’s creatures, such as dolphins and polar bears and ants and trees and all the glorious bio-diversity of the Amazon rainforest that is being destroyed as you read this.”

          –I have zero tolerance for murderers who insanely care about species to the detriment of their own and use animals as a wedge to further their own murderous ways. Nice obvious try with the deflection to other issues. If we don’t care enough to look after our own kinds, why then should anyone care at all about the rest of the wild kingdom? If you want to respect ALL God’s Creatures, then begin with the one God places more importance in, otherwise you’re just offering lip service. And again, if morality is a purely human construct subject to the whims of democracy, then why not just kill all the animals and pollute the planet? Which master are you serving?

          “Indeed, human over-population is the greatest threat to the rest of life on this planet.”

          –You drunk the Kool-Aid! Even the UN acknowledges that over-population will never happen on a global scale. The ratio of births to deaths will easily let humanity reach a plateau at no more than 7-8 billion at the very most! The current rise in global population was thanks to people living longer, but even age has its limits, cells don’t divide forever and there will be no magic cure for aging and death. But it’s typical that whenever human beings finally get a priveledge to be happy, they soon turn selfish and deny others the same prevelidges as them. And there are plenty of resources and thigns we can do to look after anyone. But because it’s so hard and many people like you just want an easy way out, you figure it’s simpler to just kill people and mutilate your sexual organs.

  • The Other Weirdo

    As for #2, you understand that there is a cultural difference between Russian and American women, don’t you? The pressure in America may be overt, a premise I don’t necessarily buy, but it would have been covert in Russia, especially prior to the fall of the Soviet Union. “Look at her, pregnant again. What, does she think is, better than the rest of us?” “One child’s enough for me, does she think she’s so much better than us?” That’s what my mother heard, when she was pregnant a second time. Ultimately, it didn’t matter because she had a miscarriage. According to the article, Russian women also abort a lot sooner, so there is less time to think and overthink the issue.

  • Anon

    Men can speak on abortion for the same reason non-slave owners could speak on abolition.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=10235831 Kristin Stark Curtis

    I am a nationally recognized authority on research report interpretation. With that qualification in mind, I find the author’s citation in point “#2″ of the argument to be scientifically irresponsible. This study surveyed only 217 American women, and the employed sampling method had intentional bias built into it. Although interesting, this study is no more than a grain of salt. The insignificant sample size alone means that the findings cannot be extrapolated to the population at large, and let’s not even get into the biased participant selection, in which pre-existing psychological issues were a requirement.

    People like to use statistics, yet most of them do not have even an elementary understanding of their formulation and application.

    • Dan

      Hello Kristin Stark Curtis,

      Could you please submit proof of you “Nationally recognised authority”?
      which nationallity do you have authority to interpret research?
      would you be willing to provide a scientifically responsible survey as a comparision?
      what convensions need to be followed to have a responsible survey?
      other than the ones stated, are there any other factors one should take into account?
      please post any more information which could help enlighten us.

      thank you for your insight,

      Dan.

  • http://www.facebook.com/pthurmond Patrick Thurmond

    Point number 6 is purely opinion and not actually a logical argument. But I like the rest of the points and the use of reason.

    I wonder when will the women in this debate stop stamping on a man’s right to have a voice. I find it disturbing that one person can garner so much control over the life of at least three persons (herself, the life(s) within her, and the father of that life).

    Currently there is only one person who actually has a say in the lives of two others in this situation. Men don’t have the choice to keep the baby, even when the woman decides she wants to abort, adopt, or discard it.

    I, for one, think that it is horrendous that a woman can take away a man’s right to be a father if he so chooses. It is bad enough the life within has no say in the matter. To claim that the life and the other creator of that life has no rights because the life spends 9 months within one person is to completely disregard reason and logic in favor of comfort and selfishness.

    It’s 9 months you have to live with it within you, not a lifetime.

  • Brian

    My oh my. After reading the comments below. I firmly believe some of you are simply trying to use clever words to best each other… How big of you. To think your father could have left you on the sheets…

  • LanceCS

    You are gonna carry that zygote to potential term because ‘I’ say so.

    No, no, no, no, shhhh stop talking and demanding control over your body, shhhhh, Jesus hates you.

  • webannie

    Abortion is a MORAL choice, this means it has ethical implications and
    simply is placed on the spectrum of right vs. Wrong actions.Some people
    say……http://ogibogi.com/node/16321 for details.


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