Do Rape Victims Have Too Many Rights?

According to Rebecca Kiessling, they do. She believes women who have been raped should not have the right to have an abortion if they become pregnant by their rapists. This October, she’s lined up to speak at the University of Washington at an event hosted by Students for Life of America and the (Catholic) Newman Center. You might have heard of them: they invited Abby Johnson to speak earlier this month on why women have “too many rights.”

Kiessling’s mother was brutally raped at knifepoint by a stranger and became pregnant as a result. This was before Roe v. Wade and her mother opted against visiting illegal abortion clinics. Still, she admits she would have gotten an abortion if it had been legal. Having been conceived by rape, Kiessling frames the issue by saying that if you support the right of rape victims to have abortions — or even to have access to Plan B, then you’re saying she deserved the death penalty:

Have you ever considered how really insulting it is to say to someone, “I think your mother should have been able to abort you.”? It’s like saying, “If I had my way, you’d be dead right now.”

No, no it is not. It’s like saying, “Your mother should have been able to abort you, just like my mother should have been able to abort me.” And if my mother had made that choice, I would not have suffered in the slightest. I just wouldn’t have ever existed.

I have some sympathy for Kiessling — she went through a great deal of personal anguish after finding out how she was conceived. But I really wish she had received proper counseling during that time instead of turning to religion. Now, she’s putting her church’s ideological views above the needs of traumatized rape victims and trivializes what they experience if they become pregnant, suggesting that looking at a sonogram of their rapists’ fetus wouldn’t be such a big deal for them.

The pro-life/pro-choice debate always boils down to one core difference: pro-lifers believe zygotes are people because they have souls. Even if we play along with this fairy tale of a supernatural-self that comes along with our bodies, this assumption still doesn’t hold water.

If every zygote has a soul, then:

  • What happens to it if it divides into two or more babies? Do they divide the soul or does another pop into being? What if the zygote doesn’t separate completely, do two souls still result?
  •  

  • What if two zygotes merge to form a chimeric embryo? Does the resulting baby have two souls or does their fusion destroy a soul?
  •  

  • Why do the gods allow so many soul-having zygotes and blastocysts to get flushed out of women’s bodies before they even know the fertilization happened?

Rhetorical questions aside, this is ultimately an issue of the separation of church and state.  Religious/theistic people are the only ones who believe in souls and they want those souls to be recognized by the government, just like they want their gods recognized by the government. But we won’t let that slide.

About Ericka M. Johnson

As a lover of science and reason, Ericka M. Johnson has an affinity for evolutionary biology and is the president of Seattle Atheists. She revels in any opportunity for a thoughtful debate on the meaning of life, the universe, and everything (especially over a pint.) Follow her on twitter @ErickaMJohnson

  • vexorian

    Edit: Sorry, seems disqus duplicated my message. Wish web users didn’t lose the right to delete their own posts.

    • http://profiles.google.com/grubhooligan J. Owen Dickson

      If you were allowed to delete your own posts, then this edited post would never have been born!

  • vexorian

    It seems “pro-life” groups have not yet evolved beyond the same old retroactive abortion argument.

  • Onamission5

    Where does “free will” come into play with all this crap? Certainly not with rape, and yet again, no free will for fetus hosts regardless of how they became pregnant?

    If god forms rape fetuses in the womb as christian anti-choicers like to claim, if he knows them before they are conceived, then he basically planned for them to be conceived by violating a woman’s body and mind in a most traumatic and lasting manner, which makes him one. sick. puppy.

    Since we’re working with hypotheticals…

    • The Other Weirdo

       Why not? He’s done it at least once before, and it’s documented.

      • Pedro Lemos

        And what´s worse, to give birth to himself.
        Fortunately, he let himself be killed later in sacrifice to himself.

        • The Other Weirdo

           In order to save us from himself.

    • The Other Weirdo

       Why not? He’s done it at least once before, and it’s documented.

  • Charon

    And remember, by masturbating instead of having sex with fertile members of the opposite sex, you are killing the unborn!

    “Every sperm is sacred.
    Every sperm is great.
    If a sperm is wasted,
    God gets quite irate.”

    • T-Rex

      Then I should be brought up on charges for the murder of billions.

    • RebeccaSparks

      Luckily, this only applies to men.  Women waste nothing on masturbation.

      • amycas

         I always thought it was odd that the Catholic Church is against masturbation because it wastes sperm, but they don’t insist that girls start having sex as soon as they are ovulating–otherwise they’ll have a period and a precious egg will be wasted. Of course, this flows from the old notion that the man planted his seed in the woman and she was simply a vessel for the baby–not a contributor.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1078695333 David Kopp

          Look into the Quiverfull movement. There’s also a reason that the Catholics are stereotyped as having large broods…

          • amycas

            Yes I’ve read about the quiverfull movement. Catholics have large broods because they believe that birth control is a sin, but they don’t necessarily think that a girl having her period is killing a baby either.

            • http://profiles.google.com/statueofmike Michael S

              The canonical reason leading to large broods is the birth control-sin, but is that the real reason why?

              • amycas

                 I really couldn’t answer that. I find the whole idea to be absurd. It hurts my brain to look further into it. :-)

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

        Except conceptual time.

      • BenZ

        They have periods though, so women must be merely serial killers while men are genocidal.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1678126743 Avalon Hoff

      Oh Monty Python, how it applies in every situation in life. :) 

    • Rwlawoffice

       This is the most idiotic argument yet to try and rationalize murder by abortion.

      • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

        It’s so cute watching you try to play with the big kids.

        • Rwlawoffice

          What a childish addition to this discussion.  Thank you for showing your maturity. 

          • amycas

            I think enuma was just pointing out your immaturity on this subject. Nice come-back though.

            • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

              To say he’s immature is the kindest possible interpretation I can apply to what he’s posted.  The alternative is that he’s a monster who thinks nothing of stripping basic human rights away from millions of women.

              I’m trying to think as well of him as I can.

              • amycas

                 ^^^Yes, of course that. I wasn’t just trying to be soft and nice for him.

          • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

            Out of all my comments in this whole thread, this is the most obviously facetious and it’s the only one you’ve responded to so far.  Why am I not surprised?

            I threw that ball as soft and slow as I could.  Now you can go home and tell your parents all about how you hit one of the big kid’s pitches.  I bet if you draw a picture of yourself hitting it, they’d put it up on the fridge.

            • Rwlawoffice

              It was the only one I felt was worthy of a response.  If you want to think of yourself as a big kid in this discussion go right ahead.

              • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

                 More like I’ve wiped the floor with you every other time you’ve tried to argue with me.  Instead of giving up halfway through like you’ve done in threads past, this time you’ve decided to not try in the first place.

                Probably a good move on your part.  Enjoy your tee ball home run.

    • http://profiles.google.com/statueofmike Michael S

      Imagine the bad-ass gangster rap songs these ruthless murderers could release!

  • schmavery

    I’m not usually one to try to police what people should or shouldn’t be allowed to identify as but being anti-choice AND a feminist are just…not compatible. You cannot be an advocate for women’s rights without fighting for our right to choose as well. 

    • The Other Weirdo

       If you can have Jews for Jesus pretending to be Jews, why can’t you have Christians pretending to be feminists? :)

      • Kevin S.

        Why aren’t Messianic Jews real Jews?  Honest question.

        • Daniel Hendricks

          Because the believe Jesus was the Messiah and that Jewish traditions are cultural rather than religious.  I think the problem is tied to “Jewish” being used as both a religious and a cultural/ethnic descriptor.  

          Messianic Jews are definitely ethnically Jews.  They are often culturally Jews. But they are not generally considered religious Jews.

          • http://twitter.com/headphase Tim Brown

            Whether or not a fetus counts as a human life doesn’t have anything to do with feminism.

            • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

               Er, yeah, it does. See, that fetus doesn’t get to set up shop in my uterus (or get to remain there) without MY PERMISSION.

              Those who think that fetus is a “human life” argue that the fetus automatically trumps any rights I have.

              It has EVERYTHING to do with feminism.

              • http://twitter.com/headphase Tim Brown

                “Those who think that fetus is a “human life” argue that the fetus automatically trumps any rights I have.”
                How selfish of them to think inconvenience is not an excuse for murder. 

                • schmavery

                  Pregnancy is just an ‘inconvenience’. Okay.

                • LifeInTraffic

                  So, you’re totally good with me telling you that you have to donate a kidney tomorrow to the disabled vet who can’t find one, right? Because your rights to your body do not trump someone else’s right to your body, obviously, so you should have no problem with state-mandated organ donation.

                  That dying vet has a right to life, too. He didn’t choose to have kidney failure, and it’s really just an inconvenience to you to have to donate a body part.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   This is not a logical argument to support murder by abortion. In an abortion, one life dies for the convenience for another who doesn”t want to carry that life for nine months.

                • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                  This also describes an appendectomy. Or a steak dinner.

                • Coyotenose

                   To my surprise, reading those two things in one sentence did not put me off my steak dinner.

                • LifeInTraffic

                  And in the case of a lack of an organ (or, heck, even blood) donor, one life dies because another doesn’t want the inconvenience of donating. 

                  Either not allowing your body to be used to forcibly support another life is murder, or it’s not.Just because you don’t like the argument doesn’t make it logical.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  1) A fetus has nothing near a working brain and thus is not a person in any meaningful sense and therefore destroying one cannot possibly be murder.

                  2) Pregnancy is not an “inconvenience.” It is an extremely long, painful, intense medical process that has very severe risks including death.  Even a very successful pregnancy is very physically demanding, and you have no right to demand that of anyone.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   What do you think is more inconvenient, getting killed or carrying a child for nine months?

                • LeftSidePositive

                  A fetus has no perception of its being alive, and thus cannot possibly be inconvenienced by being killed, any more than my imaginary brother was inconvenienced by not having been conceived.

                • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                  There is no inconvenience at all to  an embryo dying.

                  Whether carrying a child is an inconvenience depends on the state of mind of the mother.

                • Deven_Kale

                  Personally, carrying a child for nine months is much more inconvenient than never having been conscious. But that’s a ridiculous argument from it’s inception.

                • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                  Murder is the unlawful killing of a human being, a legal term. You may believe that abortion is immoral (a view that depends on individual ethics), but it is absolutely not murder.

              • Ndonnan

                Next time your sick or develop cancer all you need to do is inform the little sucker it doesnt have YOUR PERMISSION.Being a woman you have that right.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  And you know what?  Doctors would do their damndest to remove that cancer, and no one would shame me for wanting it to get the fuck out of my body, because it sure as hell doesn’t have my permission.  As soon as medical technology advances to the point that we are better at getting those little suckers out of our bodies, we will, but just because we can’t get them yet doesn’t mean we have to suffer unwanted pregnancies, which we certainly CAN evacuate.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   And your cancer is not a separate human being that has the right to live.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  Neither is a fetus.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Yes it is.  It meets all the definitions of life except those that are made up to rationalize abortion.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  You said “separate human being who has the right to live”

                  It doesn’t meet ANY of the definition:

                  It’s not separate.

                  It doesn’t have an adequately developed brain and therefore cannot perceive itself or be a human being in any reasonable meaning of the term.

                  It doesn’t have a sense of self so “who” is not applicable.

                  It has no awareness of its existence, has never existed as a mental agent, and can experience no benefit or harm from anything done to it, so it has no basis for needing or using any rights.

                  No being ever has rights at the expense of anothers’ so it’s “right to live” is irrelevant.

                • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                  Your cancer might disagree with that assessment. It has spent millions of years evolving mechanisms to enable it to survive your body’s assault on it.

                  And intellectually, your cancer has precisely the same capacity to “want” life as a fetus does, at least  for the first 6 or so months of development.

                • http://profile.yahoo.com/RWK4WZEYSTB3FHYQDET42RGJAI Maria

                  Ok, I’ve been reading a lot of these posts that you are vigorously posting and responding to. I can’t quite understand why you keep calling embryos “human beings.” It is only true that they are the raw material that will soon develop into a biologically independent human being, they are not one at the time when they are a ball of cells. I think someone earlier said that the traditional view of a human being is one that has thoughts, opinions, dreams, memories, etc. So wouldn’t the so-called rights be more appropriate to apply to the mother carrying the ball of cells (which will be biologically dependent on her until birth) than the ball of cells itself?  I’m totally aware that one day, it will be a human being (in the way that most of us think when we think of that term) but you just cannot convince me that  it is one until it pops out of the womb! And even if it is, the rights of its mother (in my mind) will ALWAYS, ALWAYS trump those of the fetus (who can’t even speak or think for itself until WAY after birth.)

                • Kodie

                  Yes, they always like to reduce the pro-choice woman equivalent to a slave-holder who wants to argue their negroes aren’t really people as long as it serves their personal interest. And then accuse us of posing non sequiturs, because the only thing that keeps a fetus from enjoying a human life is time.  It’s not their race, but over time, the story goes, a man might cajole a woman into being his fucking partner but the missed period is hers to be blamed for for dropping her pants. No credit for sexual beings in the current time of science. Let’s hold them back to a moral obligation to motherhood despite being not willing, and never bring the male of the species to blame for buying her drinks and getting her to blush.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Maria, I  do not see the distinction between what a baby becomes after the passage of time and what it is now.  It is a human being from start to finish.  I do not logically see the reason to call a fetus less than a human being just because it is small and still developing.  The only real reason  to do that would be to dehumanize it so it can be killed without remorse or a second thought.  People who believe that fetus’ are humans prior to their birth mourn their loss.  I did when my wife and i lost a child by miscarriage. 

                  If you don’t think that it is a human until it is born, then you are making an artificial distinction with the only real difference is its no longer physically attached to its mother.  it has its own dna, its own physical actions, it can be a different sex than its mother, it is awake when she is asleep, it can even have its own separate diseases.

                  The reason the rights of the fetus trump the rights of the mother is for the very reason you have stated- it can’t speak for itself, it can’t protect itself, so others must protect it on its behalf.  Others must give it a voice.  Just like we do with children after they are born. 

                • Nordog6561

                  “If you don’t think that it is a human until it is born, then you are making an artificial distinction with the only real difference is its no longer physically attached to its mother.”

                  Human only after being born?

                  To borrow from Julia Roberts in “Pretty Woman” that’s just geography.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  Um… DUH?

              • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                A fetus is a human life. That is scientifically indisputable. But legally (and ethically) we base our laws on the concept of a person, and there’s really no rational way that a fetus can be considered a person.

                Rights are only granted to people (and to corporations, of course).

                • http://www.notebookinhand.com/ Tundra

                   It actually is scientifically disputable.
                  Just saying.

                • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                  No, it isn’t. Once you have a zygote, you have a new organism of the parent species. I don’t think you’ll ever find a biologist who disagrees that a fetus produced by human parents isn’t human.

                  It arguably isn’t a “being”, and it would be absurd to consider it a “person”. But to not recognize it as human betrays a poor understanding of basic biology.

                • Baby_Raptor

                  I beg to differ. It’s very plainly scientifically disputable. If it wasn’t, we’d have a solid answer based on facts, not guesses and beliefs and faith. 

                  But if you know something the rest of the world doesn’t, feel free to share. 

                  Also, does anyone else note that the pro-choice crowd is pretty open about the fact that we’re not sure when life starts yet, but the forced birth crowd chooses to lie, even when they could make their arguments using the that we don’t know?

                • Rwlawoffice

                   If you think that you don’t know when life begins, when does death occur? If death is determined by the lack of a heart beat and brain function, why is not the life of a baby in the womb determined to be a life by the same definition?

                • amycas

                   Even doctors will tell you that death itself is pretty ambiguous.

                • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                  I’m curious, just what species do you consider a fetus produced by human parents to be, if it isn’t human?

                  This has nothing to do with when life starts. That is basic biology: a new life starts when two gametes fuse to create a zygote. The issue with respect to the ethics of abortion should be concerned with when a new person comes into existence. If you believe in a soul, that could be as early as conception (but not necessarily- the few references found in the Bible seem to mark that point as birth). If you don’t believe in a soul, and look to science for answers, you’ll probably set a point where brain function reaches a certain degree of complexity- probably the last few months before birth.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   I hope you realize how illogical that statement is.  If it is a human life it is by definition a person.  It is just that you believe that this person has no rights to live if another person decides it should die.

                • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                  A person is a legal definition, not a scientific one. You should know that.

                  The law does not recognize an early term fetus as a person, and does not grant it any rights. You should also know that.

                  Science can define when a new life starts, and it can help us with our legal definition of “person” by showing when cognition reaches different levels of complexity, or when memories start forming. But it can’t define “person”.

                • Au_catboy

                   Don’t you know by now that Rwlawoffice knows absolutely nothing about the law whatsoever?  This falls under the general umbrella of knowing things being against his religion.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   If the law defined a person as a man, would that make all women not a person? Of course not. So how the law defines a person is not the determining factor of what is a person.

                • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                  Absolutely, if the law defined a person as a man, a woman would not be a person. Are you so ignorant of history to not know that at various times and in various cultures (including our own), women, children, and slaves have all been classified as non-persons, or partial persons? Non-persons have limited or no rights, and can generally be killed without legal consequence.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Actually I do understand history very well.  That is why i fight hard for the unborn not to be called anything but humnan.

            • Ericka M. Johnson

               The question is not whether a fetus counts as human life but whether it counts as a person. A fetus is just as much “human life” as the egg and sperm it was derived from but no one is saying we should give personhood to every sperm and egg.

              • amycas

                Person or not, its still using someone else’s body, therefore, the person who owns that body must give consent.

              • LeftSidePositive
              • Ndonnan

                No sperm and eggs are a waste product until they combine

      • Glasofruix

         Jesus was a jew if i remember correctly.

    • Deven_Kale

       Actually, yes you can. The woman chose to take the risk of getting pregnant when she had sex. Every choice has a consequence, and in the case of sex that consequence is pregnancy (among others). Whether or not the woman wants to be pregnant doesn’t change the fact that she made the choice to risk it in the first place.

      If this hypothetical woman does end up being pregnant after choosing to have sex, that makes her fully responsible for the child. Whatever the stage of development it’s in when she finds out, there’s a huge potential there. This child could be a chemist, physicist, architect, teacher, or anything. If the woman then has an abortion, then not only is she deliberately murdering the person they could be, but she’s being incredibly
      irresponsible as well. Realistically, if a woman doesn’t want to be pregnant, she should take the other road and choose NOT to have sex in the first place.

      This used to be my stance on abortion, not anymore. Today I understand that it’s much more complicated than I originally thought. Therefore I have no right to say what a woman should or should not be doing in the case of an unplanned pregnancy. But to say that you cannot be supportive of a womans right to choose and be pro-life, well, that’s fallacious. It depends purely on how you define choice, and as you can see here, choice can be defined in many ways.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1078695333 David Kopp

        You can PERSONALLY be pro-life without imposing it on others. But that’s called being pro-choice.

      • schmavery

        you’ll notice I said ‘anti-choicers’, rather than ‘pro-lifers’ to distinguish between those who don’t necessarily like abortion, but understand why it should be kept safe and legal for those who might need it, from those who seek to completely abolish the procedure for everyone. 

        By your logic, the fact that I have no desire to have biological children means I should resign myself to a life without sex! Sex is not consent to pregnancy. Sex is consent to sex. Pregnancy is a possible outcome, but not something I should be forced to go through with against my will. Should I decide that I am emotionally/physically/financially incapable of carrying a potential child to term, raising it on my own or giving it up for adoption (considering the current state of our foster care system), having an abortion would be the most responsible thing for me to do. 

        • Deven_Kale

           I see you didn’t read my entire comment. Please do so, I’ve already made an important clarification that you seem to have completely missed.

          • schmavery

            I read it. I still felt the argument you presented worth addressing, whether or not it’s one you currently agree with. 

      • amycas

        I almost told you to fuck off and then I read your last paragraph. :-)

    • http://profiles.google.com/statueofmike Michael S

      Can you can be a feminist, and be incompetent at it?

  • Hannah

    If my mom had aborted me I wouldn’t have cared because I wouldn’t have existed…
    alive as I am now, I still don’t care because it WASN’T MY DECISION.

    • http://www.everydayintheparkwithgeorge.com/ Matt E

      Spot on, Hannah! Well said

    • Rwlawoffice

       According to that logic  I guess you wouldn’t care if someone decided to kill you now.  As long as it was their decision that you were an inconvenience to them and they decided that they would be better off without you.

      • LeftSidePositive

        No, idiot, she cares now because she HAS A BRAIN NOW and has an investment in and awareness of her life.

        She is also, I presume, not taking up residence in someone else’s body at the moment.

      • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

        Your analysis is flawed.

        She wouldn’t have cared before she was born because there was no “she” to care. Nobody was home yet. She wasn’t a person.

        Now she is, and has the brain machinery (and life experience) to care about her future. Of course, after she’s dead she won’t care. But before she’s dead she sure can!

      • TiltedHorizon

        Your logic implies that I had an opinion, hence free will, at conception. If that is true then I can honestly say no one asked me if I wanted to be born, I can honestly assert that I was born against my will.

        Your a lawyer right? I would like to file criminal charges against my parents for kidnapping me from the great nothingness and unlawful imprisonment within a uterus for 9 months.

        • Rwlawoffice

           Sorry, since you were not anything before you were conceived you could not be kidnapped from anywhere. You have no case.  But now, if your mother decided to kill you while you were in her womb, I would take that case because I would view that as wrongful death.

          • TiltedHorizon

            So what you are saying is I have rights from the moment of conception, therefore I have a case, I was conceived and subsequently born, against my will. No one asked me. I swear.

            I think I just had a repressed memory of dad, um, ah, eh, having coitus with mom. I’d like to add molestation charges too.

            • Rwlawoffice

               unfortunately, the law does not recognize wrongful life claims.  But  I agree that I would not want that repressed memory either.

              • TiltedHorizon

                So you are saying my mother has more rights than I did as a fetus? Go figure. :/

                • Rwlawoffice

                   No I am saying that the law does not recognize your right for being born without your consent or the consent of your mother for that matter.  It comes up in cases where the other would have aborted the child but the doctor screwed up and the child was born. 

                • Coyotenose

                  It’s been noted that you chose to hide from the points that made you look like a simpleton and instead attack an obviously insincere attack. Cowardly as well as incompetent at debate.

          • Mycos

            Two haploid cells, one  each from two separate people, M and F, meet. The one male cell bores under the others protective outer membrane. Now there are two half-sets of DNA existing within a single cell wall. Is that when this other person shows up? 
            How about when the two sets join, but have not yet doubled, or split into two new sets of DNA. Now somebody’s in there somewhere? 
            And if there is, why would God now force these people to navigate down into the uterus where it must bump into the wall in such a way that it is able to stick solidly or, like many/most other of these perfectly viable embryo-people, wind up being flushed down the toilet by a woman who had no idea whatsoever that all this drama was going on inside herself……accounting for the fact that every fertile woman alive has pulled the handle that sent their “baby” (that’s what you said, right?) to a watery death in the sewers of life. That also means, now that I think of it, that the sewers of any city or town contain 100? …1000 or more corpses of children unlucky enough (and it /is/ luck,….Apparently god does play dice with these at least!) to have missed bumping the womb wall with their sticky side down!  For that transgression, God above aborts MILLIONS of babies every day. 

            Either that… or you’re wrong about when an individual human life flickers into existence. This latter option has a lot going for it (take my word for this at least?)

            • Rwlawoffice

               Quite alot happens between conception and birth, but one thing that doesn’t change is at the beginning of the process and and the end, there is a human life being developed.  At no time does it change from anything other than a human life. So if you do not think that this life starts at conception, when does it start?  Is it at ten days when there is the first signs of a heart beat?  Is it at two weeks when there are the first signs of brain activity? is it at three months when all of the internal organs are present?  When is it? Because at some point, if you support abortion, you are saying that a human life is being stopped.  

              • Astrid

                A human being “in development” is not the same as an actual viable being separate from a woman’s body.  It is alive only as long as the woman is alive until a viability threshold is reached.  But to follow the general arguments I’ve seen in several posts here…

                If a woman’s health is threatened by continuing a pregnancy?  Is that still murder?  Or is it self-defense?  Are women required to take on all physical and mental risks associated with pregnancy simply because they were raped or birth control failed?  What is the distinction that removed a woman’s right to make medical decisions for herself?Yes, I’ve heard the “you had a choice when you had sex” argument and it basically boils down to:  You’re a slut.  Deal with it.  It serves little purpose beyond trying to shame the woman for having sex. 

                DNA established at fertilization may identify the zygote as having human DNA, but it does not establish those cells as a person capable of living outside the uterus.  I would give the argument much more credit if people would at least be honest enough to admit that prior to implantation, there is no pregnancy.  Cell division is an automatic process and is dependent upon the maternal cellular structures contained within the egg to replicate DNA, create proteins, or process energy.  In order to make it down the tubes to the uterus, that DNA is completely dependent upon the maternal cell “machinery” and raw materials to keep cells dividing. 

                A few weeks ago, my husband asked me what the medical distinction is between a miscarriage and a still birth.  Simple–viability.  If the fetus was developed enough to potentially live on its own but was delivered already dead, it’s a stillbirth.  If not, then you’ve had a spontaneous abortion..or miscarriage. 

                Just stating that “life” begins at conception does not establish a valid reason for attaching a  designation of “personhood” or an endowment of rights that may or may not be compatible with the rights of the woman involved. 

                 

            • Nordog6561

              Actually, your conclusion does not follow and is false.  But let us grant that it is accurate.

              The question then is really, why would any of that justify shoving scissors into the skull of a baby and suctioning out his brains?  Or taking a just delivered live breathing baby and throwing it into a bucket of water to drown because the mother wanted autonomy?

              But hey, because people die by nature you seem to think that killing human beings is justified.

              I mean, that really is the gist of your statement.  It’s meant as some type of reductio ad absurdum in which the charge that abortion kills human beings is rendered moot because nature kills human beings.

              That’s like saying “Since whole families die in earthquakes (or the snarky version: …since God kills people with earthquakes) then you can’t object to me killing whole families.”

              The depths of blatherskite to which pro-aborts will descend in order to justify sacraficing babies to the idol of “autonomy” is truly astounding.

              • Rwlawoffice

                 Well said Nordog.  The more I read from those supporting abortion, the more I weep for our society.

                • Nordog6561

                  Thanks.

              • Mycos

                All of which completely ignores the central point I was making…. The assumption that an actual, living person somehow magically appears simply because haploid DNA strands exist within the same cell wall. How? Why? Where is it? How can it function without even the most fundamental structures we know are common to ALL life forms? (the fact that this gamete is “alive” means nothing since both the sperm and egg cell were alive as well…and can even live for a short time outside the their donor’s body!” 

                To assume a fertilized embryo contains a living person is identical to believing an acorn contains within it an oak tree,; that an omelet recipe says to use “1 Flock of Chickens”.  

                Yes, an embryo has the POTENTIAL to develop into an independent life that is deserving of all the legal protection our laws can give it. 
                But potential life is not ACTUAL life. 

                You may have the POTENTIAL to win the Boston Marathon, but that does not give you the right to claim you ACTUALLY did win the BM, right? So how can you claim that a near-microscopic clump of undifferentiated cells that contain DNA instructions ONLY for developing a template upon which yet more chemicals and RNA “sub-routines” can react in a series of complicated processes might EVENTUALLY … but only if a million things happen to go just right! –  develop all the  organs whose presence we know is absolutely necessary to sustain human life? 
                  
                The only way you can win this argument is to continue insisting that your churches teachings on this matter are true despite no evidence for and plenty against….including my point that it would seem exceptionally cruel if the god of your beliefs was one that  created a life-or-death gauntlet course all new lives must blindly navigate or be flushed down the toilet. Such a notion is completely at odds with everything else you claim for Him, yet that somehow escapes even a moments reflection by you.  

                And THAT has rigid, inflexible mind typical of the authoritarian follower (or RWA: Altemeyer) written all over it. How sad.

                • Nordog6561

                  “The only way you can win this argument is to continue insisting that your churches teachings on this matter are true despite no evidence for and plenty against….”

                  Continue insisting that my churches teachings on this matter?

                  Not once have I invoked my churches teachings as an argument for or against something in this conversation.

                  Like I said before, I became anti-abortion many years before I ceased to be an atheist/agnostic.  My thinking on the matter had nothing to do with church dogma.

                  Nice try though.  I’m not sure if your attempt here was a red herring, a straw man, an ad hominem, or an amalgam of all the above.

                  Acorn?  Before or after germination?

                  Still, it is telling that pro-aborts are so keen on reducing the conversation to the extreme and admitedly hard cases of the blastocyst, zygote, etc.

                  Yet, in that line of argumentation the best that can be done is to foist an ad hoc definition of human being relating to sensation or brain activity.  And this definition serves, at best, to introduce confusion for those that buy it as to when, exactly, a particular individual human being becomes a particular individual human being deserving of the right to life.

                  And then often times they go one to deny that right to life anyway.

                  And even if they don’t deny the right to life in those cases, they are so anxious to nail down the right to rush in and deny the right to life to those cases in which they have been successful in introducing doubt.

                  Yet, the prudent thing regarding human life when doubt is involved is to err on the side of caution.  Not rush in and destroy with quaint stories about God killing millions through natural miscarraige.

                  The last bit of ersatz reasoning  (id est, the idea that God kills millions of babies so why can’t I?) is very curious.

                  It is a reasoning that says that since a God I deny exists allows people to die I have the right to kill babies.

                • Deven_Kale

                   And yet you still, even after all of your rants and fallacious arguments, have yet to show why exactly it is that all of our arguments are specious and subjective while yours is not. It is very much arbitrary to state that the joining of two gametes (haploid cells as I believe mycos put it) into a zygote (single diploid cell) is somehow the magic moment when it becomes worthy of protection.

                  Even if that is the case, which you argue it is, then are all of the times that a zygote turned blastocyst fails to implant to be considered negligent homicide? At what point does this natural process become immoral and/or illegal? Even an implanted blastocyst can, and often does, spontaneously abort with no actions from anyone, is that also to be negligent homicide?

                  What I meant earlier when I mentioned that Rw (and you, actually) have no argument is that all you are doing is arguing from assertion. You have asserted that they should be considered human at conception, because they just are. All of your arguments afterwards become ad hoc arguments themselves to further your own immoral cause of forced birth.

                  The general consensus is that there must be something more concrete than having a single cell with a complete genetic blueprint in order for it be considered alive and worthy of the protections granted by local customs. The agreed upon time in the US is when it can be considered to be aware and have it’s own choices, experiences, and feelings (what most would call, “consciousness”). That is, when the brain is developed enough to allow those things to happen. Most experts on the subject would agree that this happens somewhere between gestational weeks 23 and 31, or around the beginning of the third trimester.

                  Fortunately for everyone (including many of the unborn), it doesn’t really matter if you like this or not, it’s luckily the way things just are. Existential argumentation aside, at the end of the day the most moral acts almost always win out over religion and/or bigotry. Your belief that a woman absolutely must become nothing more than a complicated life support system simply because you arbitrarily believe that the joining of two germ cells makes something a person means nothing in the real world.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Dale,  here is why Nordog and I’s arguments have more merit. First we have consistently defined the unborn as what they are- human beings. The medical and accepted definition of a human being is an organism that is a homo sapien. At all times from conception to birth that is what the unborn child is. You are left to  dispute this by relying upon metaphors or analogies.  If not analogies, you then resort to different stages of development in an attempt to deny that what is being developed is a human being. The fact that a human is at various stages of its development a zygote, a fetus, an infant, a toddler, a teenager, an adult and a senior citizen, at no time is it less then a human.  Recognizing this, you then resort to changing the definition from what is a human to what is a person, as if changing that definition makes a difference.  Arguing that it may be a human but because it is not a person with a consciousness it is not a “person” worth protecting.  It doesn’t. It is simply an opportunity for you to justify denying the obvious fact that what is being developed is a human. At that point you are left with arguing the differences in personhood and which human is more of a person than the other.  You are no longer arguing who is a human and who isn’t, who has a live and who doesn’t,  but are now arguing the quality of life and which person has more of a right to live. You are left with arguing that because this human does not yet have the ability to have consciousness, it has no right to continue living.  Then, when faced with the obvious dilemma that this could also apply to people in comas, or dementia patients, you rely on the fact that at one time they had it so it deserves to be honored, while at the same time failing to honor the future consciousness of an unborm child that will surely come if left uninterrupted. Then finally, even if you finally acknowledge that yes it is a person, the mother still has the moral right to kill it because even though she was complicit in its creation, even if unwittingly, she has the absolute right to kill a life because her’s has been changed.  That is a morally reprehensible position that would not be allowed anywhere else. 

                  Finally, you are left with arguing that an act of nature has some sort of intent that you know does not exist.  Nature has no ability to have intent so it cannot be intentional or even negligent.  A tornado does not have an intent to wipe out a village, it is just a tornado.  So in an effort to justify the intentional acts of killing another human, you rely upon the inherently unintentional act of nature. 

                  At every step your arguments fall apart and you are really just left with trying to argue the act of killing another human being as moral.  because you want to. For that reason, your arguments to  justify this murder fail.

                • Deven Kale

                  Since I have no idea whether or not this thread is suffering spaghettification, I have decide to respond with a new comment. You’ll find my counter-arguments there.

                • Astrid

                  And I quote: “it is telling that pro-aborts are so keen on reducing the conversation to the extreme and admitedly hard cases of the blastocyst, zygote, etc.”

                  But didn’t YOU choose to support your argument with an extreme example?

                  “The question then is really, why would any of that justify shoving scissors into the skull of a baby and suctioning out his brains? Or taking a just delivered live breathing baby and throwing it into a bucket of water to drown because the mother wanted autonomy?”

                  The vast majority of abortions do not involve “shoving scissors into the skull.”   They are generally just a matter of suctioning out an embryo about the size of your thumb.  Your example is an appeal to emotion rather than  reason. Drowning a newly-born baby is an even more extreme example.  No one disputes that a child who has been born and is capable of survival is a separate being.    The question is at what point does a woman lose the right to make an informed decision about a legal medical procedure?

                  I saw a most elegant solution to this issue many years ago in, I think, one of the medical journals.  Brain _death_ is determined by the lack of organized brain waves.  The same standard could easily be applied to a fetus to mark when life begins.  If there are no organized brain waves, there is not a viable life.  That puts viability around the mid 2nd trimester to the early 3rd. Allowing a couple of weeks for miscalculations, that would put a cut-off point around 20-22 weeks.  Anything beyond that can be weighed on a case-by-case basis between a woman and her physician.

                • Nordog

                  “No one disputes that a child who has been born and is capable of survival is a separate being. ”

                  As a simple point of fact, this is a meaningless statement.  No newborn is capable of survival under the regime of “autonomy.”   Also, “separate being” is a term so vague it can apply to anything, even the storied “clump of cells” that is so frequently cited around here.

                  If, however, you were to state, “No one disputes that an otherwise healthy newborn has a right to life,” that statement would have meaning, it just wouldn’t be true (cf. Peter Singer).

                • Nordog

                  “But didn’t YOU choose to support your argument with an extreme example?”

                  Yes, it’s called fighting an extreme example with the opposite extreme example.

                  Yet both extreme examples still represent the killing of a human being.

                  You must forgive me if I don’t take much solace in your claim, “The vast majority of abortions do not involve “shoving scissors into the skull.” They are generally just a matter of suctioning out an embryo about the size of your thumb.”

                  One is still left with the shoving of scissors and the suctioning of brains.

                  You complain that this is an appeal to emotion as if that is mutually exclusive from the truth of the matter.

                  And the truth of the matter is that if such cases do not move one’s emotions, one has likely lost an important aspect of their humanity.

              • Coyotenose

                 Nice poor job trying to change the subject, and with the emotional appeals.

                By which of course I mean, “piss poor job”. Jesus, blastocysts and embryos are not even close to babies. Even fetuses barely RESEMBLE them. Read a book.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Sadler/100000016482886 Chris Sadler

        Your logic is extremely flawed. This is a strawman argument of the worst kind.

      • http://twitter.com/Cluisanna Cluisanna

        Um, yeah, after she was killed she wouldn’t be able to care, just as she wasn’t able to care before she was born.

        • Nordog6561

          Good thing we don’t say murder is okay based on someone’s inability to care about it after being murdered.  Or do we?

    • Nordog6561

       “If my mom had aborted me I wouldn’t have cared because I wouldn’t have existed…”

      Actually this is not true.  One does not abort what does not exist.  If your mother had aborted you, you would have ceased to exist.  It’s called killing.

      • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

        Yes, it’s called killing. Like removing an appendix is killing. No person would be killed. “You” wouldn’t be killed, because “you” wouldn’t yet exist. Just a bunch of cells that might have someday become a person would be killed. Which is why so many people have no ethical problem with abortion.

        • Nordog6561

           You are confused.  Again, many here have an absolute dedication to avoiding the distinction between the whole and the part and the distinction between accidental change and substantive change.

          But what do you expect.  This is the group that will  allow that inanimate pond scum somehow became animate matter and in time became Scarlett Johansson but not see this as evidence of a loving Creator.  I mean, pond scum to Scarlett Johansson!

          • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

            I’m not confused at all.

            A person is not defined by the cells that make up their body or brain, but by the consciousness, memories, and processes that the brain makes possible. That machinery is not in place when an abortion takes place. There is no self-awareness, and there never was. There are no memories. There are no hopes or dreams. So there is no person being killed. Only cells which have the same ethical significance to many people as a tumor or a diseased organ.

            • Nordog6561

               Your definition is arbitrary and ad hoc and, well, wrong.

              • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

                Your objection to his definition is arbitrary and ad hoc and, well, wrong.

                • Nordog6561

                   I know you are but what am I?
                   Infinity.

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

                  From here it would appear you’re intellectually dishonest at best.

                • Nordog

                  Lighten up Chris.  Can’t you appreciate a little whimsical Pee Wee Herman reference?

                • Coyotenose

                   Pretty dumb to deliberately draw further attention to your own failed argument.

                • Nordog

                  Like I told the other guy, lighten up Francis.

              • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                My definition is not wrong, it is a widely accepted one. My opinion is neither right nor wrong, it’s just my opinion. You disagree with it. That’s really as far as you can go without failing completely in your argument.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

            Pond scum does not see the change to Scarlett Johansson as improvement worthy of the Pond Scum God’s efforts.  Or wouldn’t, if it didn’t have consciousness roughly equivalent to an embryo.

  • Mitch W.

    How about we just all agree that the Catholic Church doesn’t get to speak publicly on Women’s health issues until 45 percent of the College of Cardinals is made up of women.  Once they make that progress, then I’ll listen to what they have to say on the matter.  Until then, their ideas on the matter are dead to me.

    • The Other Weirdo

       The error in your thinking is that this fictional 45% of Cardinals would support women’s reproductive rights to any significant degree.

      • Mitch W.

        Well, my thinking was on two fronts.  The first is that having women in there would help change minds and attitudes of at least some of the others, but secondly, it will never happen in our lifetime, so they can be dismissed. 

        Of course, I  also said it just to be snide. 

    • Karen Haughey

      why limit that to the Catholic Church?  I feel the same way about our law makers.   Sorry guys, but I really just don’t think there is a man alive that truly has a dog in this fight.  This is a woman’s issue only.  I don’t think any man or group of men should be allowed to do any voting on this issue.  I would welcome all opinions of any gender but when it comes to that actual lawmaking and voting…this should be left up to women only.

      • Nordog

         If by Yeah, I call B.S. on that.  It’s nothing more than sexist bigotry.  Every child killed by abortion had a father.   Men absolutely have a natural right to the discussion, and they have a legal right (in America at least) to participate in the process.  Your gynocentric bigotry notwithstanding.

        • Karen Haughey

          I do think that you have a right to the discussion and to weigh in.  But with these sort of issues, esp regarding rape issues.   I just think the actual litigating and law making needs to be done by a committe of women.  It may seem sexist and it is unfair to some  men but when compared to how unfair things have been thoughout history…..I think it balamces out.  A male majority should not be allowed to litigate this type of womens issue in my opinion.

          • Patterrssonn

            Do you think it’s possible Nordog is doing a Poe of an MRA idiot?

            • amycas

              No, this is just Nordog being Nordog.

        • Doxiesewingqueen

          Nordog.  When you  can get pregnant you have a dog in this fight.

          • Nordog

            Bullshit.  I have a say in this fight now.  Anyone who thinks I don’t by virtue of my being a man can pack off.

            • Karen Haughey

              You should have a say but only regarding a child you would have fathered.  With that said, you should not expect to be able force or manipulate the hypothetical mother of your hypothetical fetus into any decision regarding her reproductive choice in this situation.  It’s the same way regarding reproductive rights and laws.   It is just not appropriate for men to litigate womens reproductive rights.

              • The Other Weirdo

                 Then neither is it appropriate for women to litigate men’s financial and self-determination rights. You want to remove men from all pre-birth decisions? Then you should have no right(and neither should the government) to involve men in any way post-birth.

                • Onamission5

                  Yeah… no. Once a baby is born, once it is no longer solely dependent upon the body of another for survival, it has needs and parentage, and the responsibilities of the parents are the same. That cannot be said for pregnancy. The man endures nothing, takes no risks, has no threat to his health or bodily autonomy.

                  You’re basically arguing that you, as a man, should get to control women’s bodies, and that women shouldn’t, and if you’re not allowed to control a woman’s body, you refuse to acknowledge parentage. Which makes you a dick.

                • The Other Weirdo

                   Wow! Veered off the rails, crashed and burned.

                  No, I’m not arguing that at all. I am saying that if men can’t even hold an opinion on the subject of abortion(which isn’t even about abortion at all), then they should have no responsibilities afterwards.

                  A woman decides to have an abortion because she isn’t ready for parenthood. Man has no choice but to accede to her demand.

                  A woman decides to carry to child to term but give it up for adoption because she is not ready for parenthood. Man has no choice but to accede to her demand.

                  A woman decides to have the child, and doesn’t want anything to do with the father, financially or otherwise, and is herself financially capable. Man has no choice but to accede to her demand.

                  A woman decides to have the child and sues the father for support. Man has no choice but accede to her demand.

                  Two lesbians go to a sperm bank and one of them conceives a child. They subsequently split up and the courts force the sperm bank to divulge the donor’s identity so he can be sued for support. Man has no choice but accede to her demand.

                  If your entire argument rests on the fact that the man doesn’t endure a pregnancy, then I propose he be made to support the child after birth–but not the mother–for the length of her pregnancy.

                  I can see no logical reason to support children they don’t want while abortion and adoption are viable options.

                • amycas

                  So of course, according to MRA’s, the only solution is for the man to take over the woman’s body. I mean, that’s what they used to do and it was perfectly fair for the menz, right?

                • Onamission5

                  I figured you were going to go there. Men do have rights. If they do not desire parenthood, in most of not all US states, all they have to do is legally sign away their paternal rights and claims. Viola, no say, no responsibility.

                • amycas

                  By definition, anything “pre-birth” is directly affecting the woman and her health, so yeah, she has full and final say on what happens there. Post-birth, it’s not part of her body anymore, so then you can have a say.

            • Patterrssonn

               Your right Nordog these people are just spermdonist!

        • gwen

           Nordog, when you are able to risk YOUR life to carry a child to term, you have a dog in this fight. Pregnancy and childbirth can still be risky. In my 30 years of nursing, I have seen 6 mothers die in pregnancy and childbirth, and many more with very high risk pregnancies. Remaining pregnant should be the choice of the person who is carrying the fetus. Period.

        • amycas

          The father of the would-be baby does not have any rights to my body. So no, they don’t have natural right to the discussion. If I got pregnant, I would probably discuss it with the would-be father as a courtesy, but I make the ultimate decision. He would have no say init.

      • The Other Weirdo

         Absolutely! Agreed 100% So long as men’s right to self-determination following birth is likewise 100% respected, you have my support.

  • Sebjowett

    My wife now ranting. Gist of it is “That is NOT femenism! Telling a woman what she can and cannot do with her body is not feminism! That woman is an idiot if she thinks it is!”
    And I agree. Yes, it was probably very traumatic for Rebecca to learn the truth of her coneption, but to deny women the freedom of choice, under any circumstances, is wrong!

    • Kodie

       I didn’t read what she wrote, but guessing that it might be more traumatic for someone to learn that if abortion had been legal, that’s what her mother actually wanted. The whole “I wouldn’t exist!” argument being your own mother’s preference could be hard to hear. In light of pro-forced-pregnancy arguments, I believe they should be consistent and not make exceptions. If the fetus has a soul, why would the mother’s rights matter more if she were the victim of a crime?

      However, I don’t believe in the “I wouldn’t exist!” argument – people get very sentimental over their life and all the things they would have missed if they had not been born, but a lot of potential people have not been born and they don’t miss those things. I really hate when pro-forced-pregnancy people use that argument, “what if your mother had aborted you?” as if that’s supposed to make me go, oh, you’re right, that’s pretty sobering and I get it now. Existing isn’t all that wonderful, and they know it, that’s why they had to make up heaven to explain why life is so painful and hard, and something to look forward to that you just can’t get – oh, and if you’re an aborted fetus, you automatically go there, but if you weren’t conceived, you’d miss that too. What if the rapists’ mothers all had abortions? They are all like, what if Beethoven’s mother had an abortion, every fetus could be someone great! They will mostly be boring, unoriginal, and possibly criminals. Missing out on the chance to have your own little cubicle monkey or ask yourself if the world needs more of those before you have a kid. But no, every fetus could be Einstein or Paul McCartney, and none of them are a rapist or bin Laden or Bernie Madoff.

      • amycas

        They could say the same thing by saying,”What if your parents didn’t have sex that night? Then you wouldn’t exist. Wouldn’t that suck?” The fact that my parents had sex that one night and spawned me, means that I kept them from having sex another night and spawning a different child. Nobody mourns the different child who was never spawned.

        • Kodie

           I often wish that I was never born, I mean, I’m fine with that. As it is, my mom didn’t think she was pregnant for around 5 months in because she didn’t think she could have anymore kids after my brother was born and she has other medical issues that can manifest with pregnant-like symptoms. She even told an x-ray technician that she wasn’t pregnant. She could have had a 2nd child on her schedule and I would have been missed, and I’m fine with that. I don’t have a great life, and even though there’s a lot of cool shit to see and do, I don’t bother to see and do a lot of it. What I never knew before wouldn’t be wonderful enough to will myself into being, or hurt me at all. I think this comes from “It’s a Wonderful Life,” where not being born has an imaginary impact larger than it actually does. If some accident happens, it’s not like people are saying we should have had more children so one of them could avert it, so an angel can tell him his life means a lot more than he values it. Life with or without a certain person who is already alive can be different, but overall, not that much different than it is if you never met them; if you didn’t have your best friend because their parents decided to live hundreds of miles away, it’s not destined that you’ll be best friends somehow – you just have a different best friend.

          • amycas

            While it saddens me that you don’t seem to value your life much, I agree with your overall point. I hope that whatever it is that makes your life “not great” will change for the better though.

            • Kodie

               It’s not that I do or don’t value my life, it just hasn’t always been so great that I’d do it over again, and I think people make too much about dying with regrets. I don’t feel obligated to make the world a better place (or a worse place), and I’ve gotten over the fact that I’m going to die someday not having done stuff that would have been fun. It’s not like I can flip through the photo album of my life once I’m dead, and say, yeah, that was a good day, I’m glad I did that. Similarly, if you’re not born, you’re not looking forward to anything. You could live your life and say, for better or worse, I’m glad for everything the way it was, or you could wish to change things, but accept that you can’t. Every stupid bump in the road is an opportunity to be a better person than if you were never challenged – I think it’s a crock. Many a bitter person was built on the bumpy road to nowhere. And you could say, “well, I’m glad I’m not one of those bitter people,” makes the time pass more pleasantly, maybe. It’s still not necessarily worth being born if you could have avoided it altogether, and as long as you were born, you deal with it. And when I say “you” I mean a general “you” more specific to “me,” but certainly applicable to other people. I know it sounds grim, but I don’t even see it as grim. It’s more neutral than grim, as opposed to squeezing the juices out of life and filled with glorious positivity and ego that life is too wonderful. I am more the kind of atheist Christians are always saying are sullen and life is meaningless, I don’t have a sullen way about it, but I do think it’s true. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a lot of good times and appreciation. But the sort of appreciation one might have for a parent who decided not to abort them, or to put them up for adoption instead of abort them, is like, if they did abort you and you couldn’t appreciate life, you wouldn’t be that mad.

              People who believe these fetuses are looking down from heaven and haunting their mothers, are like, hell, I missed making that woman’s life a total chore and stealing food from her. I sure would have liked to jump out of a plane one day, but she screwed me out of my opportunity.

              • amycas

                 Ok I get it now. Your first post seemed a little defeatist.

      • Baby_Raptor

        My mother was one of those few (though highly exaggerated) women who used abortion as birth control. I was the first kid she had, and she only ever had one other after me. 

        Do I agree with what she did? No. Do I feel like I have any say? Not really. It was her choice. 

      • Tinker

        I love the ‘Beethoven’ argument. What if Beethoven wasn’t born? How do we know that there wasn’t another potential composer that would have been better than Beethoven but didn’t try that because they thought “if that deaf guy can do that well then I don’t have a chance.”

    • Michael

      Unfortunately, that is feminism. Feminism is one of those thing that, without an authoritative definition, includes every extreme view under its broad remit.

      You’d think right-minded feminists would come up with a new term to define themselves that doesn’t cover the extremes. Maybe they will.

      • AxeGrrl

        You’d think right-minded feminists would come up with a new term to define themselves that doesn’t cover the extremes. Maybe they will.

        You mean like Republicans?
        or Christians?
        or Libertarians?

        most groups in existence have this issue.

        • Tinker

          Whoa, don’t lump us Libertarians in with the Right on this one. This is an issue that the Libertarians come down solidly on the side of pro-choice. After all, the most basic plank in the Libertarian platform is for government to keep their hands off. 

          I understand that you have heard Christians like Ron Paul claim to be Libertarian, but let me point out that a true Libertarian would not run for Federal office in the first place.

          • AxeGrrl

            Whoa….sorry Tinker, but you’re off on a point that I wasn’t making.   My only point was that EVERY group has “extremists” in their ranks that others in the group want to distance themselves from. And the fact that you made reference to the concept of a “true Libertarian” (to distinguish between them from those who aren’t really Libertarian) demonstrates that point perfectly :)

            I just picked the 3 groups I mentioned at random, so don’t take it personally :)

  • Loic

    Yeah, why stop there? What about women who lock their doors at night, thereby preventing potential rape-resulting pregnancies? And self-defense classes for women, which might likewise prevent precious life?

    • Curt Cameron

      That’s right – had Rebecca Kiessling’s mother locked her door, that would have been equivalent to giving Rebecca the death penalty.

      Ban locked doors! The carnage must stop!

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

        And everyone who has never raped anyone is equally guilty? (Not to trivialize rape…)

        • amycas

           Don’t worry, Ms. Kiessling is the one trivializing rape.

    • Curt Cameron

      That’s right – had Rebecca Kiessling’s mother locked her door, that would have been equivalent to giving Rebecca the death penalty.

      Ban locked doors! The carnage must stop!

  • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

    My mom wasn’t the first person my dad intended to marry.  His first fiancee was killed by a drunk driver shortly after their
    engagement. It’s quite factual to say that if it had not been for that
    drunk driver, neither myself nor my brother would have been born.
    That’s two people whose very existence is predicated upon the unfair and
    untimely death of an innocent person.
    This is why the “what if
    your mom had aborted you?” question is so stupid and useless. What if
    my mom had aborted me? It’s the same result that would have happened if
    the guy who killed my dad’s first fiancee had decided to call a taxi
    instead of attempting to drive home and killing an innocent woman in the
    process. Both actions would have prevented my brother and I from ever
    existing.

    When the same hypothetical question you use to argue
    against abortion can be used to argue in favor of drunk driving, that’s a
    sign your argument is crap.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

      What if my mom just had a headache that night?   Or became a nun instead of marrying?  What if Obama’s mom had done so…the country wouldn’t have a President right now.  Or would Biden be president?  Now I think *I* have a headache…

    • Jim [the other Jim]

       Another response could be “What if Klara Hitler had an abortion?”

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    There are cases of people who have had their corpus callosum severed, who when asked in one ear if they believe in God, will say ‘yes’ on one side and ‘no’ on the other.  Can half a soul be saved while the other half damned?

    • Probablyram

      Is this for real? Where can I find more information about this. I think it’s fascinating…

      • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

        I thought it was a TED talk by Vilayanur Ramachandran, but I can’t find that in the ones I see, but I did find this:
        http://commonsenseatheism.com/?p=9433

  • Justin Miyundees

    If we take rape away from psychopaths as a means of reproduction, how on earth will they promote their legacy?

    Rebecca Kiessling – thank you – someone’s got to stand up for the rights of violent criminals to reproduce.

  • Skwerl

    (typo in the article’s title)

    • T-Rex

      Ya, & U speld “squirrel” rong.  Gramer knotseez suk.

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/ Hemant Mehta

      Fixed! Thanks!

  • Skwerl

    (typo in the article’s title)

  • CelticWhisper

    It seems pro-lifers still haven’t wrapped their heads around the concept that availability does not equal inevitability.  Even if Kiessling’s mother had had the option of legal, safe abortions, that does not necessarily mean that she would have opted to undergo one.

    Pro-choice is exactly what it says on the box: pro-CHOICE.  Leaving it up to the INDIVIDUAL to decide what to do, rather than imposing a decision upon them from outside.

    Is individual liberty really that rarely-sought a cause?  I mean, granted, we may need a new term for it since “libertarian” was co-opted by free-market fetishists but still…what’s so difficult to understand about “let an individual control no-one’s life but their own, and let no-one control their life but themselves”?

    Truly, the mind boggles.

    • RebeccaSparks

      Even if Kiessling’s mother had had the option of legal, safe abortions, that does not necessarily mean that she would have opted to undergo one.

      According to Johnson above she would have… 


      This was before Roe v. Wade and her mother opted against visiting illegal abortion clinics. Still, she admits she would have gotten an abortion if it had been legal. 

      ps Saying you’d get an abortion and actually getting an abortion are two different things, but at some point you have to trust people’s testimony.
      pps I’m not supporting outlawing abortion, just careful reading of arguments.

      • Michael

        Hold on. Roe vs Wade was a case in which Roe falsely accused Wade of rape because if she had been raped she could get an abortion legally whereas if she’d had consensual sex then she couldn’t. The case changed abortion law because it proved that men were being falsely accused of rape because of the prohibition of abortion for non-rape pregnancies.

        So how was it that Rebecca’s mother, as a rape victim, didn’t have access to legal abortion?

        • LeftSidePositive

          Do you have any idea how hard it is to get people to believe you that you’ve been raped? Do you have any idea of the kind of harassment women are subjected to by police, and how frequently they are disbelieved?

          (And, according to the Roe v. Wade Wikipedia page, that was apparently only applicable to the defendant’s situation in Texas; it may not have applied wherever Kissling’s mother was.)

          • Michael

            If her mother wasn’t believed then Rebecca’s arguments are moot. Can we assume she was please?

        • amycas

          I think those laws depended on which state you lived in.

        • ErickaMJohnson

          According to Kiessling, abortion was illegal even in cases of rape in Michigan, where her mother lived.

  • houndies

    anyone of us could have been cut short before we were born for whatever reason. her photo and rhetoric fail to move me in the slightest. its not like our souls are hanging around the universe with a number and an application, looking down on planet earth and saying “gosh, i hope someone has me soon.” like hannah says, if she hadnt been born she wouldnt have known it.  i sure wouldnt want some baby that was a product of rape. she cant convince me that her mother didnt resent her at least a little bit when she was born.

  • http://www.everydayintheparkwithgeorge.com/ Matt E

    I have to say I was struck by the Rebecca Kiessling’s selfishness. Her argument is all about her and sucks all to her mother and other rape victims, their trauma and torture is just nothing compared to Rebecca’s right to exist. 

    Rebecca, pleas learn to step outside of yourself, you’ll find the world is a much bigger, messier and more wonderful place.

    • Matt E

      Oh the spelling and grammar errors. I really shouldn’t post before coffee.

    • Onamission5

      Ms. Kiessling seems to be either ignoring or ignorant of the stats regarding suicide of rape victims upon discovery of pregnancy before legal abortion, and the death rates due to home/illegal attempts at expulsion.  I suppose though that she doesn’t mind the suffering or death of fully formed women and girls all that much when compared to the sanctity of a clump of cells.

      I wonder if she’s also anti-plan B for rape?

      • Karen Haughey

        yeah, that’s what struck me as BS the most.  Where the hell did she get all those weighted stats from?

    • Stev84

      No surprise there because Christianity is an inherently selfish religion

      • Rwlawoffice

         You know better then that.  Christianity is a religion built upon a selfless act of self sacrifice for the benefit of others.

        • Au_catboy

          No, christianity is a cult built on lies, terrorism, and human sacrifice.  

        • LeftSidePositive

          Yeah, and for everyone who doesn’t love you for this “selfless act of self-sacrifice,” you’ll consign them to burn in hell for all eternity.

          Also, how the fuck does it “benefit others” to save them from a situation you yourself put them in??

        • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

          It is built on a imaginary act of self-sacrifice, that allows Christians to- literally- get away with murder.

          Being Christian makes ethical behavior a bit of a challenge.

          • Rwlawoffice

             You don’t have to believe it but don’t mischaracterize it

            • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

              I don’t think it’s a mischaracterization. The core principle of Christianity is what makes it the most ethically damaged of all major religions: the idea that a third party can forgive you for wrongs committed against somebody else. That idea is so foul and corrupt that it taints every aspect of Christianity. It requires every Christian who seeks to operate ethically to step away from his religion.

              • Mycos

                Yes, as the eminent social psychologist, Dr. R Altemeyer, (who studied conservatism/authoritarian  submission for over 3 decades) referred to confessionals as “very efficient guilt-evaporators” that RWAs use to maintain the very high levels of self-righteous ideation they then use to justify their own acts of violence, bigotry and intolerance of “out-group” members of a given population. “Out-group” being basically non-conservative Christians, Muslims, Jews, Americans, etc. etc.

        • TiltedHorizon

           So how does preventing same sex marriage benefit me? 

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Sadler/100000016482886 Chris Sadler

          Christianity is based on a human (deity) sacrifice as if it were effective.  Further, its based on the immoral concept of vicarious redemption.  Just read the bible to see what evil deeds the god that stalks the pages does – Exodus 21, Numbers 31 Deut 25 and on and on.

        • Stev84

          What could possibly be more selfish than thinking that the creator of the universe has some special plan for just for you, while millions of people die around you every year? And that you can somehow influence that plan by sending him messages telepathically?

        • Mareycohen

          There was no ‘self-sacrifice’. Christ was a god, right? So he was “killed” in his human form and was god again three days later. As god, he could easily resurrect his human form. Oh, that’s right! He did that three days later!

          • Rwlawoffice

             So you discount his human suffering? You discount that he didn’t need to do any of this to save us?

            • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

              I think it is likely that as an actual person, he did not even exist. And if he did, I think he was probably just a wandering charismatic rabbi, one of many. I don’t think he suffered any more or less than most people.

              Even if he existed, he saved nobody.

              • Rwlawoffice

                 Your opinion only but that is your right.

              • Mycos

                Belief in the imminent arrival of a messiah who would save the Jews from the torment of being ruled from afar by an emperor who worshiped differently than they (gasp! the horror…!) was rampant throughout Palestine at the time.  as such, Jewish moms declaring their brat “the Messiah!” were commonplace.  The conservative Jews had favorites, the reformers theirs (of whom Jesus was likely one of their horses), the militant types bet the house on this bar Kochba fellow. All that got them was the final destruction of the Temple and a bus ticket stamped “Diaspora”.  

                As mentioned above, Saul or Paul took the criucifixation of one of these belligerents and used it as the outline for a then-cult that all scholars agree had more to do with Paul than it did with anything the actual Jesus may have said or wanted….which of course is the reason why western or Roman Christianity is often referred to as “Pauline”  Christianity. 

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Considering that the Christian church was in existence prior to Paul, your entire premise is faulty.

            • Kodie

               As a symbolic gesture, yeah, it’s sick and unnecessary. It’s also sick that you base your outlook on the premise that we needed to be saved by an executed Jew 2000 years ago. I can’t even begin to describe how that story fails to touch me, and find it strange that it touches you or anyone.

              • Nordog6561

                 Not surprising coming from someone who likens unborn people to ticks and who wrote, “I often wish that I was never born, I mean, I’m fine with that.  [...] I don’t have a great life, and even though there’s a lot of cool shit to see and do, I don’t bother to see and do a lot of it.”

                Apparently there is much that doesn’t “touch” you.  Sad really.

                • Kodie

                  Sad really that you would probably call a salt shaker a human being if the Jesus told you to. After all, he saved you by dying! Tell me how that actually works, like was he an organ donor? Your wishful thinking warps how you define things that there is no reason to define in such a way. No, I am not touched by the story of how I’m a sinner and owe my salvation to a storybook character so I can pretend something awesome happens after I die, and you calling something a human being which isn’t a human being doesn’t magically make it any more significant than a tick, if you want it removed.

                • Nordog6561

                  Now a salt shaker?   Like I said, sad.  Pathetic really.

                • Kodie

                  Oh, you don’t like it when someone exaggerates? Stop calling an embryo a human being.

                • Nordog6561

                   No, I just find it pathetic when someone demonstrates a near total loss of her humanity.

                • Nordog6561

                   It just dawned on me that I should note that I became a pro-life (anti-abortion) while still and atheist/agnostic who vocally and publicly rejected the Bible, Jesus, and all related religious ideas.

                  Of course, it comes as no surprise that you got that completely wrong.

                • Kodie

                  Since your first comment to me about how sad I am was in regards to how I was not moved by the whole Jesus story and left it at that without saying anything else or correcting me, silly me for jumping to the wrong conclusion!!!! However, the point still stands that calling something a human being which is not a human being does not magically change it into one, and your regards for human life of “unborn children” is, according to what you have said, MUCH higher than it is for post-born people, including babies and children, I would not say I’m the one who has no humanity.

                • Nordog6561

                   Wrong again.  I get just as upset when people chop up “post-born” babies and children.

                • Kodie

                   Your reading comprehension is pretty low. Have you passed 3rd grade? You can randomly quote-mine me just to insult me, but conveniently ignore the last thing I said to you about what you said right before that.

                • amycas

                  Who cares? I became pro-choice while I still publicly and vocally fought for the Bible and Jesus. 

                • Nordog6561

                   I was correcting the false assertion that I held the position I did
                  “because Jesus told me.”

                • amycas

                  Yeah, “Jesus told me,” isn’t the only irrantionaly argument out there. So tell me, which argument was it that convinced you that women aren’t people who deserve the same bodily autonomy that men do?

              • Rwlawoffice

                 The fact that it doesn’t touch you floors me.

                • Patterrssonn

                  You have to admit In the history of human suffering it was barely even a blip. Also if it were true there’s something too ironic about the god who created human suffering experiencing it himself to take seriously.

            • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

              Do you discount the human suffering of the thousands of others put to death by the Romans?  Their “sacrifices” were exactly equivalent.

              • Stev84

                Actually, they sacrificed a lot more. Their lives. No one else was resurrected

        • The Other Weirdo

           Christianity is based on one woman’s lie that got completely out of hand.  Besides which, it’s also based on God sacrificing himself to himself to save us from himself. But only those who believe in 2,000 year old propaganda.

          • Rwlawoffice

             Like I said, Christianity is built but a selfless act of sacrifice.

            • Drakk

              An act of sacrifice that didn’t happen.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

          I don’t believe Saul of Tarsus performed any such selfless act in creating the religion of Christianity.

          • Rwlawoffice

            Well since Paul did not create Christianity then that is really irrelevant.

        • Mycos

          Or at least that’s the version settled on by clerics belonging to a Jewish reformation movement known today as Christianity. The notion that Jesus was a man, the Son of God and God himself would have sounded silly to Xtians of the 1st, 2nd and even much of the 3rd century until a certain Roman emperor saw the value in monotheism as a way to reunify his subjects by telling them that he, the Emperor, was now the One God’s choice to rule over His earthly domain while Jesus Christ, Lord God attended to more ethereal issues Above. This act of politically motivated “conversion” served to demote the many powerful pagan priesthoods into ones that must recognize the superior status clerics of his new Roman Church had when judging matters of a religious nature. Just himself and Jesus as co-rulers of both heaven and earth, with all other gods, including their priesthoods, their power, property….all hopefully submitting to this New World Order he’d created and thereby saving his fragile empire from collapsing into mini-states worshiping different gods. 

          As you do know, Constantine was the very last Roman emperor to exist. His feigned conversion (as revealed by contemporary monuments that continue paying homage to Sol, himself of course, and almost as an afterthought, or even not at all, to Jesus Christ.  

          But what you don’t know is anything about Christ that hasn’t come down to you in a manner transformed by politics, power, and the desire of kings, popes, bigots and fools hoping to gain an edge over believers in gods and other supernatural explanations for what is ultimately, very natural events.

          • Rwlawoffice

             Actually, that is not true.  I know about Christ from reading the Bible which has nothing to do with Constantine or the Roman Catholic church.  In fact, it was written completely prior to 1oo ad or so.  Two hundred years prior to Constantine.

             

        • Coyotenose

           Protecting people from invisible monsters is not generally regarded as selfless, but as Quixotic at best. It also appears to have failed utterly even if we start with the premise that it’s true, since people would then still be being punished eternally for the finite sins that Jesus was supposed to have absorbed in the matter of a sacrificial goat (a myth drawn from numerous older religions, by the way.)

          • Rwlawoffice

             it really is hard to have a conversation with you regarding Christianity when your understanding of it is so wrong. 

            • Nordog

              He’s a troll.

  • Kubricks_Rube

    My two comebacks for “What if” abortion questions:

    Q: “What if Ghandi was aborted?”
    A: “What if Hitler was?”

    Q: “What if that aborted child would have cured cancer?”
    A: “What if that woman would have cured cancer had she not been forced to give birth?”

  • http://www.chucksteel.com/ csteelatgburg

    I’m curious to know when atheists believe life begins and should be afforded some protection by the law. 

    • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

      I don’t think there’s a uniform ‘atheist’ position on this.  I think Roe v. Wade does a reasonable job of it, and it does ‘afford protection’ to the unborn, but that protection recognizes a difference between a fertilized egg and a fully formed fetus.

      • LeftSidePositive

        I frankly don’t understand the idea of “‘afford[ing] protection’ to the unborn” because in this context it only means “protecting the unborn” AT THE EXPENSE OF THE WOMAN. If you’re going to talk about protecting the unborn by making prenatal care free and widely available to women who seek it, great, but if you’re going to declare that a woman’s body is property of the state after a certain time in pregnancy (which is the only possible functional outcome of “‘afford[ing] protection’ to the unborn” and “state interest in protecting fetal life”), this is unacceptable.

        While a fertilized egg is certainly different from a fully formed fetus, neither are entitled to exploit another human being’s body without zir consent, because no being is ever entitled to exploit another in such a way.

        Now, the vast majority of women in the later stages of pregnancy WANT to be pregnant, so it is not really an issue except for those who have dangerous medical complications, heart-wrenching fetal diagnoses, chronic lack of access to timely medical care, and lots of other incredibly desperate situations that we cannot possibly begin to police, who are going to be the most hurt by the state prying into personal medical decisions in the later stages of pregnancy.

      • Ibis3

        There’s no such thing as a fully formed foetus. There’s foetus (in various stages of development) and there’s infant or neonate.

        • Ndonnan

          Precisly,a new born doesnt look like e toddler,who doesnt look like a teen,whodoesnt look like an old man

          • Ibis3

            Yes, because the whole question rests on appearance. Thick.

      • Ndonnan

        The size of the “fetus” is irrelivant Rich,when a child is outside of the womb or inside its still a child.Using sceince and reason proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that what is concieved is the same as what is born. With the Atheist mantra of reason and sceince,they should be on the frount line of pro-life action.

        • LeftSidePositive

          You seem to be unclear on your terms:

          Gamete: A haploid cell (sperm or egg)
          Zygote: A single fertilized cell
          Embryo: A developing & dividing clump of cells after fertilization
          Morula: A hollow ball of undifferentiated cells
          Blastocyst: A ball of cells that is enlarging
          Gastrula: A ball of cells in which a pouch has inverted to begin forming the digestive system
          Post-implantation embryo: Exactly what it sounds like
          Fetus: A differentiated, developing mass of cells and tissues (usually of a mammalian species) from 3 weeks’ gestation until birth
          Neonate: A human from birth to approximately a month of life
          Infant: A human from birth or 1 month (depending on context) until about 1 year of life
          Toddler: A human from 1-3 years
          Child: A human from 3-18 years

          Please enlighten us on exactly WHAT “science and reason” shows that what is conceived is the same as what is born? That is nonsense. By this logic I am a nonagenarian.

          • Ndonnan

            All sceientific terms thats all,the end result is all the same. At which sceintific name does the “blob” become homosapian and not a puppy dog. By this logic your a silly sasuage

            • LeftSidePositive

              I refuse to listen to the “scientific” musings of someone who doesn’t know that the proper scientific nomenclature is Homo sapiens.

              The species that DNA represents does not provide us with our humanity–otherwise, my tonsils would be sacred. And, a placenta would be just as human as a baby.

              Here’s a clue: “sapiens” is actually the Latin word for “wise.”  So, it would seem that what makes us human in a philosophical sense is our ability to think…

              • Ndonnan

                Ha thanks for that,now start using some sapien

                • Glasofruix

                   You should start first, maybe you could learn the difference between “your” and “you’re”

            • amycas

              The “blob” is a homosapian. That’s not the issue. The issue is the fact that bodily autonomy gets greater consideration over right-to-life.

              • Ndonnan

                Umm no it doesnt,you gave that up when you dropped your pants

                • The Other Weirdo

                   Wow! That’s nice. So, biology is destiny after all?

                • amycas

                   Fuck you! I have a right to consent to sex without consenting to pregnancy. Essentially, you’re saying that the pregnancy is my punishment for indulging in sex, but of course the menz don’t get punished. No, they get to go off and have as many one-night-stands as they want with little to no consequences from society. Fuck you and your slut shaming.

    • eonL5

      Depends on what YOU mean when you say “life” — sure, a clump of cells is living. So is my house plant, and my dog. And there is no “atheist” dogma/rule on that, since our only common ground is that we don’t believe there is a god.

      Personally, I would prefer if abortions did not happen after “viability” — which is a moving target due to medical advances — unless there is some complication/danger if continuing the pregnancy. But I don’t think I’d fight tooth-and-nail to legislate that opinion.

      As for protection by the law… while it’s an embryo and later a fetus, it’s the mother’s rights that exist in law. The mother is a person. The fetus is not yet one. Once it’s outside of her body, then it’s a person. In my opinion. But that doesn’t address the sticky question of a mother going nuts and — oh, I don’t know — stabbing herself in the stomach and killing the fetus. I don’t have an answer for such a situation, though I lean toward maintaining that the mother is the one who gets to decide what happens with her body and that includes everything from her skin/hair/nails on inward.

      I am not bothered by an often raised hypothetical (and all-too-often occurrence) of someone else stabbing or shooting a pregnant woman and the fetus dying. It’s attempted murder of the mother. No further criminal category seems necessary — though I think attempted murder deserves the same penalties as murder. Failure on the part of the wrongdoer should not be a mitigating factor. Seems misguided to have laws that say “oh, you stabbed that fellow ten times… but the doctors managed to patch him up, so instead of going to jail for life, you just get 20 years.” However, that’s way off topic.

      • ESCkey

        Just to offer another opinion on that hypothetical situation (the criminal terminating the fetus), I do think that is also covered somewhat simply by the idea of what “pro-choice” means. It should be a woman’s right to choose whether to let that zygote develop over nine months into a human being or not, so someone who deprives a woman of that fundamental right to choice should be charged with a crime for that as well. That’s my opinion on it, anyway. What do you think? Hopefully its not too OT.

        • eonL5

          Yes, perhaps that would be another crime, but not murder. And the fact that the primary crime is attempted murder (for which the punishment should be the same as for murder) means the secondary crime is, basically, redundant. But I know that prosecutors love totting up long lists of crimes, so have at it, prosecutors.

    • Lucilius

      Life =/= either humanity or sentience. It is a matter of debate, but personally I’d cut off abortion – with a safety cushion – either before unaided viability outside the womb (by “unaided” I mean with only normal care, not special medical intervention) or, if this is earlier, the beginning of recognizably human-level brain activity.

      • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

         Then your cut-off is birth.  The fetus doesn’t get enough oxygen to fuel human-level brain activity until it starts breathing on its own.

      • LeftSidePositive

        And are the situations of the women who actually feel they need an abortion after your self-appointed cut-offs irrelevant?  Do you get to decide for them what they really need, or what they “should have” done?

        And if a fetus could theoretically live outside the womb, what good does that do the woman who is still forced to carry it? Why does the theoretical ability to live outside the womb grant it access to the woman’s body, regardless of her personal needs, physical and mental health, and whatever medical issues with the fetus are causing her to consider a later-term abortion anyway?What the hell does “human-level brain activity” even mean? And even if it were definable and even if it happened in utero (unlikely!), does that mean that the woman’s body ceases to be hers just because the baby’s brain has passed your magical threshold? Who the hell are you to “cut off” access to these women’s medical care because they want or need a later term abortion?The appropriate way to consider this is “I, Lucilius, would not personally get an abortion after [whatever],” but your preferences do not invalidate other people’s rights to their bodies nor the complexities of their individual situations.

        • Lucilius

          You sound rather hysterical, a term that is etymologically very appropriate here.

          You lecture me on how I shouldn’t be telling others what to do, then immediately presume to instruct me on how (you believe) I should speak.

          Did I say “I dictate how everyone must think?” Did I claim to be the final arbiter of these questions? No and no. I gave my personal opinion as part of a discussion.

          Of course women’s rights are to be strongly considered; did I not think so, I could easily declare that there’s no right to abortion at all. I do not. I am pro-choice, and consider myself a feminist.

          But the development of a fetus, leading to the birth of a child, is a complicated legal situation – one for which most attitudes and laws were formed long before there was any degree of medical understanding and before women’s rights and opinions were seriously considered.

          Quite obviously, there is some point at which a fetus must be recognized as a new, separate individual; religious fundamentalists would put that at the moment of conception, others at some developmental milestone, still others at the moment of natural birth. Anciently, when perhaps half of all children died in infancy, some cultures didn’t confer that legal status until roughly age 3 – those who survived that long had a good chance of making it to adulthood.

          The questions are when to recognize that separate-individuality, what criteria to use in deciding, and how to balance that with women’s rights. As I said, that’s not my decision to make, but my opinion as a member of the human community counts as much as others’. And no, before you start, I am not denigrating women’s rights by saying they must be balanced against someone else’s; in a collaborative society, every person’s rights share frontiers with all others. That doesn’t make anyone more or less important.

          • LeftSidePositive

            You sound rather hysterical, a term that is etymologically very appropriate here.

            This is an extremely gendered insult, and you should be ashamed of yourself for making it.  Standing up for my rights and the rights of other women is not “hysterical”–it is self-respect.

            You lecture me on how I shouldn’t be telling others what to do, then immediately presume to instruct me on how (you believe) I should speak.

            Criticizing speech (NOT restricting it!) is in no way the same as advocating cutting off access to medical care. You’re not just “telling others what to do”; you’re advocating FORCING others to do what you want.

            Did I say “I dictate how everyone must think?” Did I claim to be the final arbiter of these questions? No and no.

            Yes you did. You said you would “cut off” abortion with a “safety cushion” which clearly means you are talking about public policy and using the force of law to compel adherence to your preferences.  There is literally no other way to mean “safety cushion” than a policy provision.  How can you have a “safety cushion” on your own preferences? The idea is incoherent.

            Of course women’s rights are to be strongly considered;

            Women’s rights are not to be just “strongly considered.” The are to be INVIOLABLE, because human rights are inviolable.

            I am pro-choice, and consider myself a feminist.

            No on both counts. No one who is pro-choice could possibly talk about “cutting off” people’s access to medical care so callously, and no decent feminist would EVER shut down discussion by calling someone “hysterical.”

            But the development of a fetus, leading to the birth of a child, is a complicated legal situation

            No it isn’t.  I am a human being.  I do not cease to be a human being when I am pregnant.  As such, my body is, and continues to be, exclusively mine.

            one for which most attitudes and laws were formed long before there was any degree of medical understanding and before women’s rights and opinions were seriously considered.

            Tradition: just because you’ve always done it that way doesn’t mean it’s not incredibly stupid.  See also: Antiquity, argument from.

            Quite obviously, there is some point at which a fetus must be recognized as a new, separate individual;

            Yes, and that is called birth, because that’s when the former fetus is, you know, actually a separate individual.

            and how to balance that with women’s rights.

            No. Women’s rights, like all human rights, do not get “balanced.”  They do not get compromised away with other concerns. A human right is, by definition, one that should not or cannot be balanced with anything else.

            As I said, that’s not my decision to make, but my opinion as a member of the human community counts as much as others’.

            Nope–human rights are not up to a vote.  If you don’t like my human rights, tough beans.

            in a collaborative society, every person’s rights share frontiers with all others. That doesn’t make anyone more or less important.

            So who else gets their body violated at the whim of the state, and who else has their personal medical decisions interfered with by the political process? Who else is obligated to have their bodies serve as life support for another person? “Sharing frontiers” with others’ rights DOES NOT mean that those others may trample an individual’s bodily autonomy.Like
            Reply

            • Lucilius

              Sorry to break it to you, but you don’t get to dictate reality to everyone else either.  Now go ahead and scream and rage about how not getting to play god violates your rights.

              • LeftSidePositive

                So HOW exactly is my assessment of reality wrong?  WHAT exactly were the flaws in my argument? How is controlling my own body (and not, say, the universe) “playing god”? How is standing up for human rights “playing god”? How is the possibility that I may have medical care withheld from me anything OTHER than “violating my rights”?

                Throwing around terms like “dictate reality” and “play god” without any valid argument is pretty weak, and doesn’t convince anyone.

                • Lucilius

                  You presume to tell me what I think, what I mean, what I am and am not; in your other posts, do the same to others; arbitrarily declare what rights anyone has and that they are illimitable by anyone else’s competing rights, apparently if they’re not you or at least not female; ignore any argument you find inconvenient; and seek to move the goalposts from determining the point of physical and legal independence to access to medical care.

                  In short, you’re just as much of an irrational zealot as any religious fundamentalist, and hence have replied to speculative discussion with knee-jerk rants about how evil anyone is who doesn’t bow down before your personal convictions.

                  Once again, you’re not the final authority on anything. None of us are – that only comes from general agreement. But hey, if you really want to disparage anyone who doesn’t meet your standards of ideological purity, feel free to alienate yourself.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  You presume to tell me what I think, what I mean, what I am and am not;

                  You said something that had only one possible interpretation, and then you tried to weasel out of it.  By all means, if there is any other POSSIBLE interpretation of what you said, enlighten us.  You have also provided plenty of evidence as to what you are and are not, and you have not shown that I assessed it inaccurately.

                  arbitrarily declare what rights anyone has

                  Why don’t you try to actually make an argument for why the right to bodily autonomy isn’t fundamental?  Have you actually READ any of the major declarations on human rights? UN? Helsinki? Belmont?

                  and that they are illimitable by anyone else’s competing rights,

                  So, go ahead and provide ANY situation where someone’s “competing rights” gets to violate another human being’s bodily autonomy.  Go ahead. I double-dog dare you.

                  ignore any argument you find inconvenient;

                  Which argument did I ignore?  I addressed every single one of your points with direct quotations.

                  and seek to move the goalposts from determining the point of physical and legal independence to access to medical care.

                  I have consistently said the point of physical and legal independence is birth.  If you “cut off” access to abortion, you are ipso facto blocking access to medical care. This is not hard.

                  In short, you’re just as much of an irrational zealot as any religious fundamentalist,

                  Yeah, respecting human rights and observing the untold suffering of millions of women who have been denied them is exactly the same as believing in something because it’s in a 2,000-year-old book.  Duly noted.  Also, everything Tim Minchin says to Storm when she tries to pull this exact same bullshit.

                  Once again, you’re not the final authority on anything.

                  Actually, my argument comes from tons of precedent in human rights law and medical and research ethics–and, if you actually HAD a valid argument, you could make it, instead of whining about me not being “the final authority.”

                  But hey, if you really want to disparage anyone who doesn’t meet your standards of ideological purity, feel free to alienate yourself.

                  Yeah, “don’t commandeer other people’s bodies” is suuuuch a high standard of “ideological purity”…give me a break!

                • Ibis3

                  You know what we call it when a person’s bodily autonomy is involuntarily subsumed by the will and needs of another? Slavery. I’d disparage anyone who advocates that. And to oppose it isn’t “hysterical,” “irrational,” or “scream[ing] and rag[ing]“.

    • Reginald Selkirk

      csteelatgburg: “ I’m curious to know when atheists believe life begins and should be afforded some protection by the law.
      .
      I’m curious to know why you didn’t inform yourself on the basic issues before sharing your ignorance with the world.
      .
      Do you think all life is sacred? Do you eat plants and/or animals? Conflict!
      .
      Or perhaps it is human life you are concerned with. You probably care deeply about the fate of tumors.
      .
      “Life” is not the issue here. Life began at least 3 billion years ago, and has been going continuously since. Educate yourself on some basics so you can at least ask intelligent questions.

    • amycas

      My being an athiest did not change my views on abortion. Those views changed well before I shed my religion. For me, I simply realized that, living or not, the fetus does not have a right to the mother’s body. Right to life is not absolute, and bodily autonomy trumps right to life every time. So, even if there is a fully grown adult who needs to use my body to survive (and can only use by body), I still have the right to say,”No, I don’t want you to use my body.”

      • DG

        Right to life is not absolute.  Hmmm.  A popular view about 80 years or so ago.  Glad to see fads always come back around.  Yeeek. 

        • amycas

          It’s not a fad. It’s the law. It’s why the government doesn’t force us to donate sperm, eggs, blood, plasma or organs. In fact, bodily autonomy is respected so much, that they won’t even use organs from somebody who is dead if they weren’t an organ donor in life.  What other situation is there where I would be forced to use my body to keep somebody else alive? Even if I hit a guy with my car and he needs an emergency blood transfusion and I’m the only available match, they could not legally force me to give my blood.

        • Reginald Selkirk

          Right to life is not absolute.  Hmmm…
          .
          The next question is going to be about your stance on the death penalty.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

      Several billion years ago.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

        As to the origin point of a human BEING”s rights to existence, I’m willing to compromise.  The compromise is Roe V. Wade.  I’m not willing to compromise further.  Third-trimester abortions are incredibly rare, and extremely important to have as an option.

  • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

    Every month that Kiessling avoids getting pregnant, it’s another person (by her definition) down the toilet. If she does not spend every fertile moment of her life pregnant, she deserves the death penalty. The carnage!

  • http://criticallyskeptic-dckitty.blogspot.com Katherine Lorraine

    What if my parents used a condom on Mother’s Day 1983?

    • http://www.notebookinhand.com/ Tundra

       Totally agree, but that’s why Catholics have a problem with contraception.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1078695333 David Kopp

      What if they had waited an hour and done it? There were millions of sperm racing there, only one could win, and who knows who would have gotten out of the gate first if your parents did an hour more of foreplay. Every person is beautiful and unique, just like snowflakes. And for every one that does exist, millions of potential others don’t. But that’s not a bad thing.

      • http://criticallyskeptic-dckitty.blogspot.com Katherine Lorraine

        Exactly. I’m (mostly) glad for who I am. I’m glad that every single little detail of their coitus aligned to produce me. If any one little detail were off and changed, well, I wouldn’t truly care because I wouldn’t have been born and nothing could be done at that point.

        (I wish I had been born as a girl, but science can take care of that.)

        (Also, thinking about oblivion is weird, cause trying to put yourself in the mindset of never having existed is impossible)

  • Cutencrunchy

    How many babies come from affairs? should we go all out advocating infidelity because of the mass number of glorious souls who don’t exist simply because we aren’t brave enough to cheat and have sex with strangers every night? and what about Aliens? they use the human body to incubate their babies and that seems pretty gross.. but really the baby of a rapist growing inside me would feel like the seed of the devil – a dirty left over remnant of a monster growing inside me – we have 8 billion people on a planet that supports 3 billion and each of us is amazing and special the trillions that didn’t make it would have been special too but there is always going to be an excessive abundance until disease or war culls the herd – imagining the ones who didn’t make it is wasting your life imaging if you’d chosen to be a fireman or doctor or plumber or stripper …life is and then isn’t and the energy continues on…. let’s not ruin the lives of the living by imposing our values, and beliefs onto their choices in the form of laws.. if you do just remember one day those choice laws will be aimed at you.

  • Abrahamsson

      Under the assumption that heaven and hell exist, abortions would be a good thing wouldn’t they? The “baby’s soul” would have not sinned, therefore would go to heaven, and the doctor was a sinner anyway, so he would go to hell. The mother is most likely getting an abortion due to premarital sex, so she’s a sinner anyway. So why don’t pro-life supporters  approve of adoption? It kills three birds with one stone. 
      I suppose that it’s the potential for life to exist, and that person’s life. I mean, what a wrench would have been thrown into god’s divine plan if some tyrannical mass-murderer or psychopath had been aborted!! 
      There are a few holes in that logic, but if you believe that an all mighty Being loves you, but will throw you into a fiery pit to burn for eternity if you do not follow his every whim, it should go over fine with you… 

  • http://www.facebook.com/ChrisYNP Chris Harmon

    If my mom hadn’t had a miscarriage- otherwise known as a spontaneous abortion- I wouldn’t be here.. the death of my proto-sibling led to my conception…

    • Ibis3

      Mine too.

  • scinquiry

    As an atheist and a humanist I stand in a minority in
    that I’m against abortion.  Of course I recognize that there are
    circumstances that would warrant it, however; as a fundamental argument for the
    right to life, I just cannot square the issue of being a rationalist humanist
    and support abortion.  Perhaps I’m not properly taking a point made by
    Richard Dawkins in “Unweaving the Rainbow” to its logical conclusion:

    “We are going to die, and that makes
    us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never
    going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but
    who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of
    Arabia. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats,
    scientists greater than Newton. We know this because the set of possible people
    allowed by our DNA so massively exceeds the set of actual people. In the teeth
    of these stupefying odds it is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are
    here.”

    If you can imagine the nearly infinite amount of sequences that took place
    before you became you, to deny that very last step, to me, is in-human. 
    Of course, I’m open to critique of my logic.  Perhaps I’m overlooking
    something.  But to me, the idea that through the various stages of
    gestation, the ability for this developing human lacks the cognitive faculties
    to feel pain and know their existence, is a flawed argument.  It’s as if
    we are bargaining with ourselves.  Ultimately, that embryo will develop
    into a human.  Whether or not that human will be loved or cared for or
    have a fair life, makes that a very difficult decision and I don’t have a
    concrete stance in that regard.  Concrete and unchanging convictions are
    character flaws of the religious.

    • scinquiry

      I would like to point out that I am pro-choice.

      • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

        I don’t think anyone is ‘pro abortion’.  My stance is “reduce need for abortions, and make those needed happen as early as possible”.

        Prevent rape.
        Easy access to birth control.
        Comprehensive sex ed.
        Easy access for abortions so that if they’re going to happen, they can happen sooner.

        You’ll notice that other than the ‘rape’ one, these are positions opposite to the ‘pro life’ movement.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

          I’m pro-abortion in the same sense that I’m pro-heart-surgery–I’d rather nobody I care about ever need one, but I’m extremely glad it’s available.

    • scinquiry

       Re: my comment above: “But to me, the idea that through the various stages of
      gestation, the ability for this developing human lacks the cognitive faculties
      to feel pain and know their existence, is a flawed argument. ”

      I’m not saying that a group of cells knows it exists and can feel pain.  I’m just saying that using that as an argument is flawed.  Ultimately, that group of cells becomes a human.

      • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

         Sometimes that group of cells becomes a teratoma.  If an embryo’s potential to become a person means it already is a person, then does it’s potential to become a cancerous tumor mean it already is a cancerous tumor?

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

          I have the potential to become a heart-transplant donor at some point in the future.  Doesn’t necessarily mean I should be treated as one RIGHT NOW.

      • LeftSidePositive

        “Ultimately becomes a human” is a completely irrelevant argument.  Every egg I’ve ever ovulated could have become a human, but it WASN’T at the time.  And, no, sperm aren’t magic and they don’t transcendently confer “personhood” to previously merely biochemical ova.

        Furthermore, where your argument utterly fails is that you have a shocking lack of respect for HUMAN RIGHTS.

        The “right to life” NEVER, EVER includes the right to exploit someone else’s body without their consent.

        I am a human being.  That means I owe my body to NO ONE.  Not to patients on the kidney transplant list who are definitely human, not to hemophiliacs needing platelets, not to ANYONE.  My body is mine and no one gets to use it without my consent. My past or present sexual choices do not invalidate my autonomy over my body, nor do I “owe” some mindless clump of cells access to my organs and nutrients just because I am a sexual being (like 99.99% of humans everywhere, ever).

        If you can’t appreciate the vital necessity of consent and personal autonomy then you cannot possibly be a humanist.

        • scinquiry

          Thank you.  Points very well taken. 

          • LeftSidePositive

            That was, like, totally the LAST reply I was expecting!!

            • scinquiry

               Why?  I’m not an argumentative person.  I’m an atheist and, despite what you say, a humanist.  I was only trying to suss out an inner dialogue I have been having with myself regarding the issue.  I posted the question as a means for getting other opinions on the subject because I was clearly suffering from some cognitive dissonance.  After hearing back from other members of the community I stand corrected and retract my initial statements.  Thank you to all those with well thought out and civil responses. 

              • Ndonnan

                Why not just use sceince and reason to answer your questions,its really quite obvious to any basically intelligent human,do all humans have the right to life???

                • LifeInTraffic

                  I, actually, don’t agree. These questions can be difficult to wade through, and having someone explain a different side to an issue in a rational, reasoned way can be helpful. 

                  Finding someone who listens to that other side, let alone says “wow, that was a relevant, intelligent argument with points I hadn’t thought of, and it totally changed my mind” is fantastic, IMHO. I, certainly, am no expert on every issue. It’s refreshing that someone can consider something and change their position if warranted. 

                  Given that, in general, most of us would like more people to be atheists, would like more people to stop and think about human rights, and would like more people to be open to intelligent dialogue, I would rather see encouragement  to discuss and consider.

                • Ndonnan

                  You are so right and i agree with you 100%.We all think we are right until are able to see things from someone elses perspective.

                • amycas

                  I used to be anti-abortion, until I found out what used to happen to women when it was illegal. Then I started looking at the questions from different angles and I became pro-choice.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  1) A fetus is not yet a “human” in any moral sense, any more than my tonsils are.

                  2) The right to life NEVER includes the right to use another person’s body without consent.  Case closed.

                • Ndonnan

                  1)not according to sceince and reason.                                        2)no one is using anyones body without thier  concent

                • LeftSidePositive

                  1) You can’t just fling around “science and reason” and expect us to be impressed.  You have to cite the science and actually provide reasonable arguments, which you have thus far utterly failed to do.

                  2) The fetus is using the woman’s body without her consent.  If she is seeking abortion, by definition she does not consent to the presence of the fetus in her body. Moreover, consent is an ongoing process: consenting to one thing with your body IN NO WAY WHATSOEVER requires you to acquiesce to anything else to be done with your body. Consent to use one’s body may be revoked at any time.

                • Ndonnan

                  Yours is defence of sceince and reason to an atheist point of view until it infringes on your “right ” to terminate a child who you created and want rid of because they willaffect your freedom. welcome to adulthood. if you jump of a bridge and dont give gravity your “consent”, the  resalt is the same. Life dosent seek your approval its a concequence of your actions

                • amycas

                   Pregnancy is NOT a necessary consequence of sex though.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  NOT A FUCKING CHILD!!! A FETUS IS NOT A FUCKING CHILD!!!!!

                  HOW MOTHERFUCKINGLY DENSE ARE YOU?!?!?!?

                  Do you seriously think you can pull the same bullshit over and over again, after we’ve easily refuted it MULTIPLE FUCKING TIMES and think you’re getting somewhere?

                  You are a worthless fucking troll and you are repeating yourself and adding NOTHING WHATSOEVER to the discussion with your simple-minded, repetitious idiocy.

                  Abortion terminates an embryo. MAYBE a fetus if the pregnancy wasn’t detected early enough.  It is physically impossible for an abortion to terminate a child SO SHUT THE FUCK UP ALREADY BECAUSE YOU’RE NOT CONVINCING ANYONE!!!

                  When we figure out how to fix the consequences of our actions, modern medicine and engineering FIXES IT.  You are one babbling idiotic naturalistic fallacy.

                  And don’t you fucking DARE put my rights in quotation marks, you authoritarian self-righteous asshole!!

                • Rwlawoffice

                   So up until the baby comes out of your body your can kill it? Why stop there? Why value life so little that it depends upon the consent of someone else to continue?

                • LeftSidePositive

                  Because when the baby is in my body it falls under my jurisdiction of my bodily autonomy. This is not hard for anyone to grasp, provided they’re not a willfully ignorant forced-birther shitstain.

                  Why value life so little that it depends upon the consent of someone else to continue?

                  BECAUSE THAT “SOMEONE ELSE” IS PROVIDING THE ORGANS AND THE NUTRIENTS TO MAKE THAT LIFE POSSIBLE. That person is putting their health on the line for a potential “life.” That potential life would be utterly impossible without the astounding investment of resources a mother’s body has to devote to it. That person is experiencing the pregnancy WAY more than the fetus is even capable of doing.Respecting people’s rights to consent to what happens to their own bodies IS valuing life. If you don’t value consent, you don’t value human beings, and therefore cannot possibly value anything morally meaningful in “life.” (Your valuing life at the expense of someone else’s consent is also pretty damn callous to all the women who have killed themselves or been butchered trying to rid themselves of a fetus who had invaded their bodies without their consent!)

                • Rwlawoffice

                  By your logic if another human being needs the resources of another to survive then that person is not worth saving.  That is morally bankrupt position.  If you truly value human life why not try and protect the most vulnerable and innocent in our society? The value of human life is not dependent upon the consent of another that it should continue to live.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  No, you fucking idiot, if a person needs the resources of another to survive, then that person can CONSENT to give them resources IF AND ONLY IF they are so inclined and free from coercion. Whether or not the person is “worth” saving is an entirely different question than whether or not it is ethically possible to save them. (You also have utterly failed to substantiate any claim as to how a fetus has any of the necessary characteristics to be considered a “person” or “human being.”)

                  Don’t keep trying to analyze my logic when you and logic clearly haven’t spoken for years and you wouldn’t recognize it if it shoved a proof up your ass!

                  “Try and protect the vulnerable” is not an excuse to enslave other people in order to do it. If that were the case, I could consign you to a gulag to sew clothes for Down Syndrome babies.

                  Thanks for being so clear about your cold-hearted and despicable attitude toward consent, though. It really clarifies things.As for “innocent,” you keep using that word.  I dunna thinkeh means what you thinkeh means.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2y8Sx4B2Sk

                • Donalbain

                  Yes it is. If I need a kidney transplant and nobody else consents to donate, then I will die. We do not force people to donate the use of any organ to another person

                • Rwlawoffice

                   By the way, capitalizing that it is a fetus does not change the fact that a fetus is a child.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  By the way, ignoring biological reality and the definitions of basic English words does not change the fact that you are a willfully ignorant, deceitful, authoritarian, misogynistic piece of shit. (It actually enhances the fact!)

                • amycas

                  1) LeftSidePositive said “moral” sense

                  2) The embryo/fetus is using my body without my consent. (No, consent to sex =! consent to be pregnant)

              • Ibis3

                Thank you for listening and being willing to change your mind (or work out your own position with some external input). It’s rare to find and makes all the effort worth it.

                • Scinquiry

                  Snarky? Yes. But I don’t blame you for your frustration and impatience. I’m on your side. As I initially said, I’m open to critique. No hard feelings.

              • LeftSidePositive

                All right, I was a little too harsh in my response, but yeah, I was genuinely floored by your answer.  You see, most people who post questions like that are not doing it in good faith, and I can honestly say that truly curious people make up about 0.1% of the questioners and the other 99.9% entrench into extreme willful ignorance and women’s-rights-minimizing. I don’t mean that as a criticism of you personally, I’m just trying to explain why a lot of the responses to you seem like we’re gearing up to play Whack-A-Troll.  Anyway, I am happy to be wrong and I hope our comments were helpful (if a little snarky).

              • amycas

                We’re surprised because normally somebody doesn’t change their opinion on this (or any other) issue so quickly. It’s refreshing. :-)

        • Ndonnan

          Stick to sceince,your un fertilized eggs were never going to be human and neither was my ejeculated sperm,they are waste products, nothing more ,nothing less.A concieved child isnt exploiting your body,isnt a tumour or a desiese but a person created as a direct resalt of your actions for which you must take responsability for.The tiny percentage of pregnancys resalting from rape,whilst an appaling outcome i think dont warrent the death of a child.That is not what a rational freethinking ,intelligent humanist would try to justify.

          • LeftSidePositive

            If I don’t want that conceived zygote (that’s what it’s called after it’s conceived; it doesn’t become a “child” until about 9 months later) in my body, and it is using my body for protection and nutrients against my will, it sure as fuck is exploiting it.

            And as I already said in my post, the fact that I am a sexual being DOES NOT require me to give up my body to some biological accident, no matter what its “potential.” Being sexual is not a crime, nor is it a “sin,” nor indeed anything other than the inherent state of the vast majority of humanity.  If you are saying that half of humanity deserves to have our rights stripped from us for doing something that is 1) not a crime, 2) a hard-wired psychological drive, 3) necessary for our mental health, happiness, and ability to form meaningful relationships, and 4) something the other half of humanity feels perfectly entitled to indulge in, you have something very, very wrong. You are basically saying that due to the biological accident of my having been born female I deserve an immense amount of pain and suffering inflicted on me (even if I were to have no control over the circumstances of my getting pregnant!), even though medical science makes this entirely avoidable. Your attitude is disgusting.

            Abortion doesn’t cause the death of a “child.” It causes the destruction of a blastocyst, maybe an embryo, and at the latest possible stage, a fetus.  It is not possible for an abortion to kill a child, because by definition a child is a person who has already been born.

            • Ndonnan

              Your only kidding yourself,Google abortion and you will see a bin full of babies,not blastocysts,and the name given is only a sceintific term and is irrelivent to the indervidual involved.Yes you do have total freedom to do what you like with your body but as we all know,with freedom comes responsability,so when a man gets a woman pregnant,he is responsable to contribute to the expenses created,and what do we all call men who dont take their responsability seriously?

              • LeftSidePositive

                Yeah, ’cause Googling abortion is a *totally* reputable way to get accurate medical information!!  **headdesk**

                Guess what–I have actually scrubbed in and witnessed a D&C on a deceased post-implantation embryo of a wanted pregnancy.  I looked at all the tissue under the microscope in great detail.  I can assure you: NOT A FUCKING BABY. The thought in my head was “that’s IT?!”

                “Responsibility” (which is how that’s spelled, btw) does not mean I have to give up the right to my body. It also doesn’t mean I owe a mindless blob a damn thing. Responsibility also means thinking seriously about consequences and making an educated decision about whether or not to bring a new person into the world.

                Comparing financial obligations to the forceful use of someone’s very SELF is dehumanizing and disgusting.

                • Ndonnan

                  If and when you do have children you will realise life as you knew it will end. you do give up your freedom and at times it will be with reluctence and other times happily.Then as you look at your child you will realise what an abortion does in a whole new way

                • LeftSidePositive

                  Nope, most people I know who have had children say the experience of pregnancy makes them more pro-choice than ever.

                  And I’m not going to confuse a wanted, breathing, physically present child who can communicate with me with an embryo, because I am not an idiot.

                • Ndonnan

                  So what do you say to a lady who says ,yahoo im 6 weeks pregnant, im having a baby, do you say,oh you idiot youve got a zygot not a baby stupid

                • LeftSidePositive

                  No, firstly because I’m not an ignorant fool so I 1) know how to spell “zygote,” 2) know that a zygote is a single-cell stage and that is not applicable at 6 weeks, where the appropriate term is “embryo,” and 3) am aware that basic English grammar employs gerunds to communicate future actions so the sentence is technically accurate.

                  Furthermore, I know that pregnancies are rarely detectable at 6 weeks so this whole scenario is absurdly unlikely.

                  And, most importantly, I would respect her eagerness about her future and her projection of her hopes onto this future being, because those emotions are powerful. Since she is describing her own feelings about her own life and not trying to force policy on anyone else, she may react however she wants.

                • Drakk

                   “Having” as in “going to have”, as in future tense, as in NOT OCCURRED YET.

                  She has GOT a zygote (and should probably be aware of that). She is GOING TO HAVE (given she chooses to carry it) a baby.

                • Kodie

                   Well, if she says she has a baby, but she says she’s having a baby; in the future when it becomes a baby, then she will have it. Also, if you’re going to use big words, learn to spell at least some of them.

                • amycas

                  Afaik, the majority of women in the US who get an abortion already have children. Also, I’ve had a miscarriage, and it didn’t change my view about abortion. Nice try though. 

                • Miss_Beara

                  Now you believe you can know what a woman thinks after she has a child? 

                  Go on, keep on digging yourself into a deeper hole. 

                • Ndonnan

                  No i listen to what woman tell me who have had abortions, you can deny it all you like at this stage but it will hit you one day

                • LeftSidePositive

                  Have you ever heard of anything called “selection bias”?!

                  Actual, well-recorded DATA shows that the most common emotion felt after abortion is relief, and abortion doesn’t have anywhere CLOSE to the mental health problems that pregnancy and adoption do.

                • Onamission5

                  I have four children. I am pro-choice precisely *because* I know first hand how difficult pregnancy, delivery and parenthood can be, and would never force such a hard job with permanant, substantial, life long impacts upon someone who was unprepared and unwilling. So your claim that parenthood somehow magically makes a person decide that a developing, non-sentient fetus or embryo takes presidence over the woman or girl whose life will be permanantly altered in a significant manner, that doesn’t hold water.

                  I am also pro-choice because I have seen the impacts of your brand of shaming on real, living women. I am pro-choice because I have first hand observations of how the adoption process can permanantly emotionally damage a woman who was forced to carry to term a pregnancy she didn’t want, and then hand over the results to strnagers, and how that has haunted her for her entire life, the guilt, the grief, the rage. I am pro-choice because I understand very well what it is like when a young teenager is raped and the sheer terror involved in waiting to find out if she’s pregnant, knowing her family is anti-choice and would force her to carry the pregnancy, would blame her for the rape. I am pro-choice, in short, because I am a compassionate person, because I am a parent, and because I am a survivor.

                • amycas

                   I think it’s weird when anti-choicers pull the “responsibility” card. What could be more responsible than recognizing that you’re not ready for a child or a pregnancy and taking the necessary steps to stop the pregnancy?

                • LeftSidePositive

                  It’s the naturalistic fallacy writ large.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Adoption would be more responsible.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  No, bringing a person into the world who cannot consent and not being there to care for them is EXTREMELY irresponsible.  I will NEVER bring a child into the world if I cannot personally ensure its well-being. By giving it up for adoption I cannot be sure it will not be abused or neglected, and that is indeed irresponsibility, and by the time the person is born and growing up they are able to feel pain and abandonment in a way a fetus could not possibly do.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   It is more responsible to kill an unborn child then to give it up for adoption because it might be abused or neglected? That is some warped logic. It is better if I kill you now because you might feel pain later?  Where does that end?

                • LeftSidePositive

                  I am a sentient being. I have the capacity to make my own choices. I have awareness of my existence, goals, and needs.  A fetus does not have any of these. Never experiencing anything and never being aware of the world is not a loss, it is simply not existing. I can’t believe you are too dense to understand this.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Let me say this very clearly-  I understand your arguments, I don’t agree with them. The definition of human life is not dependent upon sensory or self awareness. Nor does that make one who has yet to experience that not something that is not existing.  It is how you want to think of it so that you can say you have the right to kill it.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  Oh, you don’t agree with them? Big whoop.  Way to really thoughtfully defend your position, there!

                  So, if human life is not dependent on self-awareness, how DO you define human life?

                  I don’t think anyone denies an embryo/fetus exists in the sense of it as a physical entity. My question is how do you define HUMANITY and what argument do you have for why a fetus would have such a thing?By the way, if you think you understand my arguments, you don’t–I maintain I have the right to kill anything that’s violating my body REGARDLESS of whether or not it is sentient, but the fact that a fetus is not sentient is the reason I see no need to feel bad about it.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   You have just proven that i understand your arguments completely.  You use the idea that the fetus is not sentient to remedy your guilt for killing it. Why would human life be dependent upon self awareness? Human life begins at conception in my opinion.  If you want to say that it is dependent upon a heart beat or brain activity I can agree with tat as well-  that is about two weeks or less into development.  That is how we define death, so it should  be how we define life.

                   A fetus has a humanity just like you do- it is a human being, albeit a small one, but a human being nonetheless.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  Guilt?  There’s some projection right there!  Most women feel relief after an abortion.

                  Humanity is dependent on self-awareness because that is what separates us from all other animals, it is what enables us to form lasting relationships and appreciate beauty, kindness, brilliance, and love. It is what lets us communicate and cooperate and make our world a better place. It is the very mechanism by which we understand who we are and what it means to be human.  Without that we would be just any other omnivorous animal (and, indeed, we afford rights and protections to animals, at least for research purposes, directly in relationship to their neurological capabilities).

                  Well, your opinion is bullshit, and it totally fails to account for the extraordinarily high percentage of zygotes that do not implant after fertilization.  It also fails to address why a single cell is any different from any other single cell in my body.  It fails to address why humanity is special compared to other animals.  It fails to address what happens to twins and chimerae.  It just plain fails.

                  Argument from assertion again.  Fail.

                • Kodie

                   Do you feel guilt for pulling a tick off your skin? You walked through the woods, you knew it could happen to you! Now you have to take responsibility for feeding that tick, but you don’t want to have that responsibility, so you callously shorten its life to increase the quality of yours. Why do you think women have guilt about abortions? Maybe it’s because you keep willing them to feel guilty by telling stories about how guilty they should feel, tell them how they should frame their perspective in order to have the most guilt and sentimentality. Yes, you’re anti-women.

                • Rwlawoffice

                  Maybe they feel guilty because they know that they are ending the life of a child and not simply flicking off a tick despite the attempts of people like you to tell them that is what they are doing.

                • Kodie

                  It is how you want to think of it so you can say nobody has the right to terminate it. You are defining things as you wish instead of how they actually are. 

                • Rwlawoffice

                  That is exactly what all who support abortion do when they dehumanize the unborn child.  Despite its medical claim as a fetus or a zygote, it is still in actuality a child.  The label doesn’t change its being.  Nor does the willingness of the woman to either accept it or reject it.   It doesn’t become a baby because she wants it just as it doesn’t become a parasite becuase she doesn’t.

                • Kodie

                  Despite its medical claim as a fetus or a zygote, it is still in actuality a child.

                  It is not in actuality a child. The label doesn’t change its being, time does.

                • amycas

                  Rwlawoffice, in this country there are thousands of children already waiting to be adopted. Most of these children will not be adopted and will spend theire children going from place to place and will most likely not get a good education Why would I consign my own child to that when I have a bettter option of wating until I am ready?

                • Rwlawoffice

                   What makes you say that your own child would become a foster child just because you get pregnant before you are ready? You would have the option to give your child up for adoption to a family where this would not be the outcome.  Also, I am sure if you asked the child, a less than ideal life would be better then no life at all.

                • Kodie

                  Also, I am sure if you asked the child, a less than ideal life would be better then no life at all.

                  Why don’t they adopt someone who was born instead of cajoling women to carry a fetus to term? It’s neglectful and doesn’t say “I value life”. It says, we prefer infants and have a prejudice against living human beings who don’t have parents. Also, how sure can you be? A less than ideal life is not preferable to never having existed. That’s a sort of propaganda, even kids in secure two-parent middle-upper-class homes in want of nothing will assert that they didn’t ask to be born. You’re a peddler of sentimental horseshit.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Children that are eligible to be adopted out of  foster care are adopted.  Not enough for sure, but it does happen so it is not an either or proposition.  And please do not try and tell me I have a prejudice against children who are alive and don’t have parents. you know nothing about me, but let me give you a little insight- Our family has a foundation that has built and supports an orphanage in Uganda the houses 120 orphans (because that is all the space we have), a clinic and a school. We also support a children’s home in Mexico that takes care of children that have been removed from their parents who were using them as sex slaves.  My wife and I just attended to Christian Alliance for Orphans seminar where we spent our own time and money to learn how to expand our reach and help more orphans and victims of sexual trafficking.   My wife is also a child advocate volunteer representing children in the foster car system here in our town.  So don’t tell me we don’t care or engage with the children that are all ready here.   I am not telling you thin to toot our own horn, there is far more work that needs to be done, but I am really tired of the implication.

                • Deven_Kale

                  I am sure if you asked the child, a less than ideal life would be better then no life at all.

                  That’s a blatantly false assumption. You don’t know anything about the life that child may have. Even in the best of circumstances, there are children born with undetectable defects such as hormone imbalances, neurotransmitter imbalances, brain defects, malformed internal organs, or maybe they just have shitty parents. Nearly all of these conditions are undetectable until a point where abortion is no longer an option (legally, at least). Sometimes that even includes having shitty parents.

                  Any one of those condition could lead to a life so miserable for the child that they very well could wish death (or in the case of abortion, never living) upon themselves instead of having to live with their own perceived hell they’re living in. Medication can sometimes help, or surgery, but not always. The point is, you can not know how helpful unless you’re living in that situation. Even asking them means nothing, because people like that have learned that giving an honest answer to that question gains them nothing of emotional value or substance.

                  So again, your assumption is false, and I’d be willing to bet there are far more people who wish they’d been aborted than you could even possibly imagine. I say this because, to a very large degree, I am one of them. Could I be projecting this onto more people than there really are? Yes I can, but you could very well be doing the same in regards to your perspective.

                  Edit: added quote

                • Kodie

                   Nobody owes anyone a fresh newborn when there are children waiting to be adopted. Why don’t y’all put your money where your mouth is and value life of a child who is waiting to live in someone’s home and be their kid. No, you get Christians who can’t have a child of their own and they want a shiny white brand new one that looks like them that they don’t have to advertise to everyone that they’re sterile. Prey on abortion clinics and steal yourself some babies!

                  Furthermore, value the life of everyone after they’re born, you are like, well, they didn’t give the baby up for adoption, I’m not going to help them be able to keep those babies easily. Social programs would certainly help a lot of people feel less like abortion (or adoption) was the only way out. Cheap, available birth control and birth control education, don’t shut down the PP just because they do abortions too. Help families stay together and not be in a chronic cycle of poverty. In case you don’t get it, carrying a child to term is not only biologically hard on a woman’s body, but they cost so damn much, even if you’re not super-poor. No one who wishes there was some way to keep their own baby should have to give it over. Getting an abortion is certainly humane, you disagree. It’s like, every time I have my period, I could have been pregnant, fertilizing that egg, yeah, that’s still a bunch of stuff that gooks up a tampon to me. There’s no sacred rights for the lining of my uterus with or without a fertilized egg in it.

                  But some people do wish there was a financially viable option, one which would not separate the infant from its mother for the rest of its life. Anyway, it’s about choice. Everyone knows adoption is one of those choices. Keeping a baby that you wish you didn’t have to give up is another one of those choices – so you are anti-choice because I don’t see all these social programs making the choices easier. They all weigh different weights, and you make abortion out to be the heaviest one. It’s a lot lighter than having a kid you can’t afford or letting someone else profit from you having sex. That’d make them pimps, I felt like I had to explain the joke because you seem quite humorless.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Have you ever seen the pictures of an aborted fetus?  I would recommend that you do.  Of all the choices, abortion is the only one that kills the child, so yes it is the worst choice of all.

                  Also, I would not want to be the one to support Planned Parenthood.  It is an evil organization.  It hides behind its supposed prenatal care and sexual education to really support its abortion business.  For example, in 2010 Planned Parenthood served approx. 31,000 prenatal patients but performed over 340,000 abortions and only made 841 adoption referrals. 

                • Stev84

                  What happened to the alleged right of a child to grow up with their biological parents?

                • amycas

                   That’s right. He was the one advocating that over on the gay-marriage thread.

                • Ndonnan

                  Ah more responsable,mmm well not getting pregnant, but now that you are, reassess you life as you knew it to acommadate a new son or daughter,brother or sister grandson or grandaughter. you see there is other people involved and affected by your lifes choices

                • LeftSidePositive

                  Are you too fucking callous to realize that birth control fails sometimes? Are you too fucking ignorant to realize that some men intentionally sabotage their partner’s birth control as a means of abuse?

                  Who the fuck are you to tell me how I should reassess my life?  If I like my life as I know it, not as I “knew it,” it will fucking stay the way I want, because I don’t owe anyone my life and my ambitions.I don’t give a fuck who may be “affected” by my life’s choices over my own body, because when it comes to my RIGHTS, I will do whatever I damn well please and what is best for my body, because it is MINE.

                • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

                  That settles it.  I’m firing my doctors and throwing away all my medications.  If only I’d known years ago that all I needed to do to get rid of my life-threatening migraines, un-deform my hips, teach my pancreas how to work normally, and grow second kidney was to reassess my life. 

                  I can’t believe I ever chose to have life-threatening migraines, deformed hips, a janky pancreas, and unilateral renal agenesis in the first place.  Life choices.  Who knew they were magic?

                • amycas

                   Fuck you. sex does not equal pregnancy. I am allowed to have sex without the fear of getting pregnant. For someone who claims to value the life of a fetus so much, you sure don’t shy away from using it as a punishment for female sexuality. Since this is probably the fifth time this issue has come up in this thread, and it’s already been explained to you. Everytime I see you use the “well don’t have sex” argument, I’m just going to telll you to fuck off.

                • Miss_Beara

                  It is VERY disgusting. 

                  I don’t think this person is ever going to get it but I appreciate your well thought out comments. :) 

            • Stev84

              >”You are basically saying that due to the biological accident of my
              having been born female I deserve an immense amount of pain and
              suffering inflicted on me”

              Hey, that’s exactly what Christians believe. Or at least most of them used to believe. A woman ate a magic apple after talking to a snake. So afterwards all women were punished with pain and child birth. It says so in the Bible.

        • Rwlawoffice

           If you cannot see that the value of a human life is not dependent upon its location in your womb  then you should not call yourself a humanist.

          • LeftSidePositive

            If you cannot see that the value of my life and my autonomy is not dependent on the biological accidents of my womb, then you are a motherfucking bastard.

            And I don’t see where “value” of an embryo comes in.  It has no damn brain. And I value my womb, thank you very much, and I DECIDE what I do or do not want inside it.  This is not a value judgement of one zygote over another, this is simply my right to do what I want with my body.

            Btw, reducing the whole medical risk, physical pain, and extraordinary physiologic demand of pregnancy to “location” is pretty fucking condescending.

          • Ndonnan

            Ha got a few single liners there RW,good luck

          • amycas

            My womb is not a mere “location,” it is my body. Pregnancy doesn’t only affect my womb; it affects my entire body. Go fuck off now, k?

            • Rwlawoffice

               But it is the place where the child is living until it is born, so my statement was correct.  It is no way minimizes that your womb is part of your body or that your whole body would be affected by pregnancy.  Maybe we could have a discussion if you weren’t so hostile and projecting beyond what I have said.

              In the meantime I will disregard your suggestion and wish you a great day. 

              • amycas

                Yes, my womb is a location. I said it’s not a “mere location.” Go back and read what I wrote. I’m not projecting anything. Your comments on this thread have demonstrated that you don’t really understand certain key concepts in this debate: consent, bodily autonomy, affects of pregnancy, affects of adoption, etc. If you do understand those things, then your comments have demonstrateed that you don’t care about a woman’s bodily autonomy, whether or notshe consents to sex (or pregnancy), the affect pregnancy would have on her body, the psychological trauma of giving a baby up for adoption, or the future of a baby that is given up for adoption. All of these things lead me to the conclusion that you are an asshole who should just fuck off.

                I’m hostile because you’ve stated multiple times (on a thread about whether or not rape victims* have the right to abortion) that when a women has sex she gives up the rights to her own body. I believe it was you who said something along the lines of “you should have thought of that before you dropped your pants.” So are you or are you not arguing that I lose my rights to my own body just for having sex, and the same thing doesn’t happen to men?

                *those who did not consent to sex, in case there is confusion of definitions.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Coming from a person who thinks that it is perfectly moral for a woman to get pregnant for the sole purpose of killing that fetus to use in an art project, your view of me has no credibility. On the contrary, it shows you total lack of a moral compass.

                  Carefully read what I am about to tell you-  I fully understand your arguments.  I do not agree with them. I never once said that when a woman has sex she gives up the rights to her body.  What I did say and what is moral is that when she becomes a mother, even if by accident, she owes an affirmative duty to protect her child and she has no right to kill it.

                  The drop your pants line did not come from me by the way. But i understand that this does get confusing the longer the thread continues.

                • Kodie

                   

                  On the contrary, it shows you total lack of a moral compass.

                  Your “moral compass” puts the fertilized egg on a higher standing than any living human being or even dead ones(?) if I am to understand correctly. That’s, in the vernacular, whack. However, lots of people have their fetuses to term for the artistic expression of little lady beauty pageants and giving them emotional complexes about their own sexuality via indoctrination in a particular flavor of religion. YOU WERE PRECIOUS when you were just a dream, but now that you are real, I have to mold you into the person I decided you should be. Children have no autonomy. They have no freedom of religion. You are about humanizing things that aren’t a person just to dehumanize everyone who disagrees with you, because you have overstated and exaggerated upon your whims.

                  So what are you: judgmental, sanctimonious, kind of a drama queen, prone to believe lies when they favor your position and restate them as fact. You are sentimental and deluded, and with no actual sanctity of life, you pretend to have the moral high ground on the premise that you are defending the innocent defenseless poor froggy just because the cells that make it up are from humans and not actually frogs. You would not let a tick settle into your skin, and why don’t you care about the tick? Because you’re not a tick! What about the ways of the poor defenseless tick. I don’t like ticks, you don’t like ticks, I don’t want Lyme Disease, you don’t want Lyme Disease, finally some common ground. Ticks mate each other and like to find a blood host, this is how they manage. I’ve never seen a tick beauty pageant. I have seen people do really horrible things to living dogs, and people who eat a fish have no regard for life. No regard for even the lives of their own children, as if their brains aren’t subject to abuse. And you want us to weep for the unwanted erstwhile children who should be playing in the playgrounds and free to have the gay whipped out of them if their wrist limps by their own domineers, the ones who put their DNA together in an act of drunk lust.  Life is not extraordinary. Pro-forced-birth is not a logical position, it’s a sentimental one, pretending there’s a god and a soul and all that jazz we are depriving a human being of the great experience of asking if you want fries with that.

      • amycas

        I’m pro-choice. I don’t use the inability of the fetus to feel pain as an argument. My only argument is that bodily autonomy trumps right-to-life. You can’t force anybody to give their child a kidney to save their life. You can’t even force people to donate organs after they are dead (which I think is weird), so why should I be forced to donate my body to a fetus for nine months? If I choose to do that, great, but if I don’t want to be pregnant, then it’s my body and I can choose to not be pregnant. I don’t need to study the fetus’ brain activity or anything to make that decision either.

        • Pedro Lemos

          “Whether or not that human will be loved or cared for orhave a fair life, makes that a very difficult decision and I don’t have a concrete stance in that regard.”

          What you´re saying there is basically that we don´t know if the unborn baby will have a good life, be a great person or the contrary, be a murderer, a jackass, or simply, be a regular, average person. That is uncertain. But if a pregnant woman is willing to do an abortion, I´d say she´s pretty much certain her life will be miserable if she keeps the baby. So,  I´ll go along with amycas in this one. You´re changing the certainty of a miserable life for a woman who will have to raise the child of someone who´s done a terrible deed to her, to the uncertainty of a good life to the baby. So I guess, the mother´s choice would prevail, considering she has a better critical thinking than someone who doesn´t even has a conscious yet. Her body freedom in this case is a bigger value than the baby´s life. And don´t tell me life should be always more valuable than anything, otherwise you would not be so condescending to death penalty there in the US.

          • amycas

            Thank you!

            • scinquiry

              Thank you both.

              • amycas

                 This is why debate and discussion is useful.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

        And some of those cells become a fetal placenta.

      • JA

        “Ultimately, that group of cells becomes a human.”

        This is untrue for the half of all pregnancies that end in miscarriage. Maybe the prolife movement needs to figure out a way to prevent all miscarriages because they kill far more “babies” than abortion does.

    • Ibis3

      Your logic is flawed. Implantation (i.e. pregnancy) is just one point on a continuum of potentiality.  You might as well say that we (women) all have a duty to be continuously pregnant so as to bring as many potential children to full and actual independent existence as possible. And men shouldn’t be doing stuff like playing sports or scrapbooking. They should be lining up at sperm banks to whack off as many semen as possible. Wouldn’t want any potential embryos not to grow up to be the next Keats, Einstein, or Mugabe after all.

      Okay, that sounds absurd you say. But what about just never using birth control and let “nature” take its course? That seems much more reasonable, no? Well then you end up with families of Duggar proportions. You want to condemn us all to lives of baby-producing and unending labour to provide the necessities of life for these families? After all, gone are the days when one could expect half of the infancy survivors to succumb to childhood diseases, garden-variety infections, and lack of clean water.  That doesn’t sound very humanistic to me.

      What difference is there between a potential person halted by a headache, one halted by a condom or IUD, one halted by the pill, one halted by Plan B, one halted by Mifepristone, and one halted by a surgical abortion? Nothing. They all might have been people if circumstances had been other than what they were. And what if 6 months after an abortion, a woman gets pregnant again and decides to keep it. Isn’t not having an abortion preventing the second child from ever being born?

      Moreover it is not “the last step”. Gestation itself is the last step (or process to be more accurate). It takes an effort and nutrients and hormones supplied by the mother’s body to become anything other than a single cell. Without her body, an embryo isn’t a potential anything.

      • scinquiry

        Thank you Ibis3.  That helps a lot.  I retract my previous post.

      • ACN

        I’m copy-pasta’ing this for reference and re-use for everytime in the future I have to go through this fight with people.

        Well said!

    • Reginald Selkirk

      Ultimately, that embryo will develop into a human.
      .
      You state that as a fact. Apparently you live in a world without spontaneous abortion (miscarriage). Since you don’t live in the same universe as the rest of us, why do you think your view is relevant to us?

      • scinquiry

        I stand corrected.  I hastily posted that as “will” vs. “has the potential to”.  As far as my view being relevant to you is, I’m a human and a social creature who is interested in discussing ideas.  I apologize for bothering you.

    • JA

      I think most people who are prochoice are against abortion. It is actually the prolife movement that is responsible for the huge number of abortions that occur because they are the ones who oppose easy access to birth control, morning after pills and comprehensive sex education. They are creating the very problem they are decrying.

      • amycas

        I’m not against abortion. As long as that is what the woman is choosing, then I see no problem with it. If, however, it is a coerced/forced abortion, then Ibelieve that is wrong. I also think forced/coerced pregnancy is wrong too (really any forced medical procedure).

    • The Captain

      One of your flaws is that just because something “can” become something, does not mean that it “is” that something.

      An acorn will develop into a tree, but I bet if your neighborhood association had a ban on cutting down oak trees and a fine for it, you would be pissed if they  gave  you a ticket for raking up the acorns in your yard during the fall. 

    • Kodie

       All the infinite amount of sequences aren’t magical. All the hypothetical humans who could possibly make this world a lot better is not worth the over-crowding of making massively more ordinary humans and less-than-good humans. We are not precious snowflakes. What about the infinite amount of sequences that took place before any kind of being was born? Is it in-human to cut down a seedling before it grows a tree over your septic tank? Is it in-human to put a flea collar on your cat? (I don’t like collars, but I am in favor of stopping the life cycle of the flea). Is it in-human for people to choose never to have children? After all, why break the chain of infinite sequences? Why limit yourself to 2 (random popular number of children to have), that is only 2 out of infinite. You have eliminated an infinity of sequences by having only 2 children. They’re it, and chances are, they are neither a Keats or an Einstein. You could just keep trying until you get one or both, if that’s what you think this world needs from you, but I think that’s egotistical. Procreating is not such a hard thing to do, and just because someone gets an abortion does not mean they have assuredly deprived the world of something she was obligated to give an extremely slim chance to provide. Kiessling’s mother provided us with an illogical moron, and her rapist’s mother provided us with a rapist. Thanks to abortion being illegal. It’s kind of in-human to inflict humans of low quality on the rest of us, but I’m not going to force anyone to abort them, since it’s impossible to predict these things without any statistics, but I’d say people who can ill afford to support an infant financially or emotionally are going to have the cards stacked against that child succeeding in any form. Just because some do doesn’t mean it’s a solid bet, since we’re only amazed by these success stories in the context that they beat incredible odds. It can happen, but letting it not play out is not the same as flushing the greatest mind of our time (crossing our fingers?) down the toilet.

      • scinquiry

        Thanks Kodie.

      • Rwlawoffice

         Wow,  you sound alot like Margret Sanger.

        • Kodie

          Then check your reading comprehension, and if you have anything constructive to say to me, say it. 

    • AxeGrrl

      Ultimately, that embryo will develop into a human.

      You do realize that the specific language you use here (“will develop into”) suggests that an embryo, in its present state isn’t a human?

      I don’t think that that was your point, but your comment clearly suggests that embryos are different than babies or indepedent human beings ~ and on that point, you’re right……

      embryos can develop into babies/independent human beings, but until they develop to that stage, they aren’t those things.

      I have no problem with the suggestion that when a brain is formed and a heart is beating, that is different than a mere ‘clump of cells’ ~ it’s the suggestion that a zygote or blastocyst that’s a couple of weeks should be considered a full ‘human being’ that’s problematic, imo.

  • Anon

    Why does everyone assume the following two things these days:
    1)Everyone who disagrees with abortion is a theist
    2)All atheists are pro-choice

    Its not as black and white as that, there are many valid secular arguments that can be made for both positions, so stop treating it like its not a moral issue. Many people, myself included don’t believe in inalienable Kantian rights, and think that things like the morality of abortion don’t have a clear cut right answer. To talk as if pro-choice arguments are the only ones with any merit or the only ones worthy of consideration is both patronising and factually wrong.

    • Reginald Selkirk

      there are many valid secular arguments that can be made for both positions, so stop treating it like its not a moral issue… To talk as if pro-choice arguments are the only ones with any merit or
      the only ones worthy of consideration is both patronising and factually
      wrong.

      .
      I understand that there are a few atheists who are anti-choice, but I haven’t heard any good arguments from them. Feel free to lay some on us. Show us some anti-choice arguments that have merit. Telling us about the greatness of  the argument you’re not presenting is not going to impress us.
      .
      I did read one dipstick who insisted that “science says life begins at conception,” but curiously he never got around to explaining the science. Don’t blow smoke, and don’t expect us to accept things on authority.

      • JA

        I’ve never read a prolife argument from either an atheist or a theist that had any merit. Forcing a woman to have a baby against her will is unjustifiable. The rights of a sentient being should take precedence over the rights of a clump of nonsentient cells.

        • http://twitter.com/headphase Tim Brown

          When is it murder to terminate a human being then? Keep in mind sentience does not begin at birth.

          • amycas

            It’s difficult to demonstrate sentience in a neonate, much less a fetus. How exactly do you know it’s sentient?

            • amycas

               Sorry, I read your post wrong. My bad.

        • Rwlawoffice

           sentient is medical defined as the ability to be responsive or conscious of sense impressions.  Fetuses respond to stimuli at about 8 weeks.  They have touch sensors in their mouths that grow to the rest of their body.  They can hear by the 25th week.  Far from a clump of non sentient cells

          • LeftSidePositive

            Citation desperately fucking needed.

          • Parse

            There’s a huge difference between “ability to be responsive or conscious of sense impressions” and actual sentience.   Or do you consider venus fly traps sentient as well?

          • amycas

            Yep, and at 8 weeks it’s still using my body to live, so if I don’t wantit using my body then I have every right to expel it from my body. Fuck off.

            • Nordog6561

               “Fuck off” she explained.  LOL!

              • amycas

                 No, I”m telling you and rw to fuck off from now on. Or did you not read that post I wrote about 8 hours ago? That’s right, I forgot who I’m talking to. You don’t actually read the shit that others write against you. You just continue to argue that women shouldn’t have rights when there’s a precious baby growing inside her. Of course, you don’t give  a shit about that baby once it’s actually born, do you? How many children have you adopted? Do you support Wic and other programs that help low-income families??

    • Reginald Selkirk

      To talk as if pro-choice arguments are the only ones with any merit or
      the only ones worthy of consideration is both patronising and factually
      wrong.

      .
      To insist on the factuality of meritorious arguments you have not presented is factually stupid.

    • Au_catboy

      Anon: “there are many valid secular arguments that can be made for both positions, so stop treating it like its not a moral issue.”

      Name three.  You say there are “many”, but I for one have never so much as heard of a single valid argument for the fetus-fetishists, just a bunch of shitty ones, and only a handful of the shitty ones could be considered “secular” by any stretch of the imagination.  So, what are these allegedly “valid” and “secular” arguments for forcing women to carry unwanted parasites at great risk to their own lives and health?  And why can’t I use the same arguments to cut out one of your kidneys without anesthetic because I know someone who needs a transplant?

      • Rwlawoffice

         For the same reason that you cannot go get a kidney for someone else, you should not have the right to kill another human being to help someone else. Calling it a parasite does not change the fact that it is another human being with its own right to life.

        • LeftSidePositive

          If killing that “human being” is the only way to get it to stop hurting another human being, then yes, in fact you can kill it.  This is what the police do ALL THE FUCKING TIME.

          • Ndonnan

            Lefty ,you need a hug,go make a cuppa and relax. Belive it or not im serious.We are having a debate that is emotional by nature but needs to be kept in context

            • LeftSidePositive

              Actually, I’m just listening to music, catching up on some data crunching, and replying when my disqus notification goes off, but thanks SO MUCH for pulling the concern troll bullshit.

              The context of this debate is that you are trying to strip away women’s rights to our very own bodies. You are trying to make me vulnerable to a painful, life-altering, life-threatening condition, and policies like yours KILL THOUSANDS OF WOMEN worldwide every year.  The context of this debate is that you are a shockingly ignorant, authoritarian douche and you are more than welcome to go fuck yourself.

        • Reginald Selkirk

          you should not have the right to kill another human being

          You skipped a few steps there; the steps where you establish that a eftus is a “human being” with more rights than a full grown human woman.

        • amycas

          I think you have your analogy backwards. It should read: for the same reason that I can’t force someone to give me a kidney so I can live, I cannot force a pregnant woman to remain pregnant so a fetus can live. 

  • Reginald Selkirk

    The implications of Kiessling’s stance are far-reaching. According to her, if I don’t go out and rape somebody tonight, I may be preventing a human life, and that would be a terrible thing. So I should be raping women every opportunity I have.

    • AxeGrrl

      I would love to hear Kiessling’s rebuttal to that :)

      • Rwlawoffice

         Her rebuttal would be that this is an illogical and idiotic argument. Saving the life of the child conceived by rape when it occurs in no way logically supports the argument that rape should occur.

        • Reginald Selkirk

           It’s offputting to hear someone drone on about the “rights of a child” when their position requires confusing a fetus with a child, and has no consideration whatsoever for the rights of a full grown woman.

        • amycas

          But it does support the argument that women are mere vessels and even when she was forced to conceive she still has no rights to her own body. Earlier you were arguing that I should be forced to remain pregnant if I CHOSE to have sex. Now I see that even if I don’t consent to the sex, I’m still forced to be pregnant. I believe this calls for another: Fuck you.

  • Reginald Selkirk

    On the plus side, I guess it’s a good thing the University of Washington is inviting such extreme voices to speak, so their students and community can ask questions and think things through.

  • Ken

    Why does no one ever go after the greatest abortionist of them all — God?  Seriously, until the later 20th century, infant mortality was a serous issue.  I have aunts and older cousins who lost children in childbirth.  Much less these days.  Premies, prenatal defects, malnutrition and spontaneous abortions have been significantly reduced by the works of man, thus thwarting God’s will that all those little babies should die. And what about all those third world babies that starve to death, and the infant infections, signifying that God apparently wants to see them in hell right away, and we in the west keep snatching them from His clutches with antibiotics and surgeries and such.  And the in vitro fertilization must really piss God off, flushing away all those excess zygote souls and forcing one to live and grow despite His omnipotent will that the man or woman did something really, really bad sometime (or an ancestor did), and they were being punished with infertility — presumably consigning all the woman’s eggs straight to hell.  Yes, that’s all our loving, caring, beneficent God — an abortionist.  But that’s okay — he’s got His reasons.

  • BenZ

    I want to see a sperm give a lecture with the same title, “Did I deserve the death penalty?” in opposition to the genocide of masturbation and involuntary wet dreams.

  • Marco Conti

    Since others have been stretching the “what if” argument to absurd ends, I want to have some fun too.   By that insane logic, I am a murderer, a mass murderer no less, for every time I choose to forgo sex with my girlfriend or wife. How many of those missed chances would have ended up in a pregnancy?

    For that matter, my daughter’s conscience should weigh heavily on her because after she was born her mother and I decided to be more careful and not get pregnant. Because of her untold human beings were never born. If we decided not to have sex the night that produced my daughter,  another person would have been born which in turn would have been responsible for other humans remaining unborn. If nothing else because of the inability to be pregnant during gestation.

    See how insanely this argument can be stretched? Every action could result in people being born or not and we are not even talking about masturbation which according to this logic would be a genocide.

    Where I come from we like to say that “If my grandmother had wheels, she would be a bicycle”.

    “If” arguments are puerile and meaningless. Maybe in the Multiverse every single possibility comes to fruition, but agonizing over them in a single universe is silly. Unfortunately there will be fools that will take her argument as valid because at first it sort of sounds as if it makes some sense. Only when one actually ponders it in a bit more depth (not too much, to be sure) one can see its innate silliness.

    This argument deserves to be recognized as it’s own logical fallacy. I propose to call it the “Rebecca Kiessling Fallacy” as in “Stop using the Kiessling fallacy”.

    • amycas

       Technically, you are a serial murder for every time you forgo sex. You are a mass murderer for every time you masturbate. ;-)

    • AxeGrrl

      Where I come from we like to say that “If my grandmother had wheels, she would be a bicycle”.
      “If” arguments are puerile and meaningless. Maybe in the Multiverse every single possibility comes to fruition, but agonizing over them in a single universe is silly. Unfortunately there will be fools that will take her argument as valid because at first it sort of sounds as if it makes some sense. Only when one actually ponders it in a bit more depth (not too much, to be sure) one can see its innate silliness.

      Great post, Marco, you nailed it :)

  • Daniel Hendricks

    Ugh.  If my parents had had sex a day earlier or a day later, I wouldn’t be here either.  Someone else might be, but not me.  Heck, if immediately after the act that conceived me, my mother had gone for a quick jog around the block, a different person would be here.   The odds that the me who is writing this was the me that was conceived is actually pretty slim.  A quick google search says 280 million sperm/ejaculation i.e. 1:280 million that the me writing this was the one conceived vs. 1:18 million for winning the California Lottery.  This doesn’t give me any special right to exist.  My existence is pure happenstance.  

    I’m sorry, but people are pretty easy to make.  I know that my own mother is vehemently anti-abortion.  In her mind, she had no choice by to carry me to term.  She’s certainly never voiced that to me, but I know that A) she is absolutely against abortion and B) she had me in the midst of dropping out of college and getting divorced from my father.  

    Conversely, my own daughters were born when my wife and I decided that we were in a place where we had time, careers, and desire for children that were all conductive to doing so.  My daughters will grow up knowing that we wanted them to be born before they were conceived.  

    And quite frankly, if one of them ever ends up in the position my mother was in with me, I would most likely recommend either abortion or adoption.  I’d really rather all children be born to parents who want them prior to conception.

    • amycas

      Your daughters and your wife are very lucky.

    • Rwlawoffice

       All children are wanted, but maybe just not by the parents who conceived them. That is why adoption is an option that should be promoted.

      • LeftSidePositive

        Do you know what the foster system is like right about now? Do you know how many abandoned children are waiting for homes? In 2010 there were 408,000 kids in foster care and only 53,000 adopted, so you can take your “all children are wanted” and go fuck yourself with it.

        And I’m sure as fuck not going to bring a child into the world only to have it’s life be a constant hell of beatings, indoctrination, and sexual repression from some nutso right-wing Christian fundamentalists.  I will tell you right now, I would certainly rather never exist than be born into or sent into such a cesspit.

        • Rwlawoffice

             I am very well aware of the foster system.  Who says the kids in these situations were not wanted at the time they were conceived? What we are talking about here is a child not being wanted by the mother that conceived him or her.

          Your posts show you to be one angry person.  That is a shame.

          • LeftSidePositive

            You said “all children are wanted.” That is not true. Now shut up, because you’re fucking wrong.

            And when you’re being willfully ignorant I’m going to call you out on your bullshit. Trying to derail by calling me “angry” without thinking of how utterly incompetently you are making your points, and how mind-bogglingly offensive your dismissal of women’s rights is, is pretty low, quite frankly.

            • Rwlawoffice

               Why assume that foster children are not wanted by somebody?  Maybe they are very much wanted by their parents but were taken away from them.  Maybe they are very much loved by their foster parents? Maybe they are even wanted by their social workers as much as they can be.  What we do know however is that when a women aborts her child she does not want that child, but that doesn’t mean that someone else would not love to have that child.

              • LeftSidePositive

                But it doesn’t mean that someone will *definitely* love them, and it doesn’t mean that whatever you are loosely defining as love will be enough to sustain that child’s physical and psychological needs.

                And the extraordinary numbers remaining in the system are pretty solid evidence that not enough are wanted.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   one thing we agree upon. There are way too many children in foster care.  But i don’t see that as a justification for abortion.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  I never said it was a justification FOR abortion (bodily autonomy is the only justification abortion needs), I meant it completely invalidates your pompous and ignorant claim that “every child is wanted” as a justification to force people to be pregnant against their wills.

              • amycas

                We know they’re not wanted because they don’t have any place they can call home. Until they have parents who love and want them, we cannot call them wanted children. Where are all of these magical people who would love to have these children? If these people exist, then why are there still thousands of children in this country waiting to be adopted?

      • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

         Yeah, tell that to all the kids in foster care who are still waiting for a forever family.

  • Nordog

    Not being created is not the same thing as being destroyed.  There seems to be a dogged confusion here regarding the distinction between “never have been” and “no longer being”.

    There’s a quote running around from Mark Twain in which he says that death is nothing to be afraid of because he was dead for thousands of years before he was born and it never bothered him a bit.  I wonder if that quote is authentic.   Twain was smarter than that.  He was not dead before he was born.  He simply did not exist.  Death and destruction are not the absence of existence, they are the loss of it.

    Another distinction often lost in these discussions is the nature of the thing abortion seeks to destroy.  The following is clipped from an article on stem cells…

    *******

    Supporters of embryonic stem cell research argue that at these
    early stages we are not dealing with human beings, but with a cluster of undifferentiated
    cells no larger than a period at the end of a sentence.

    Typically, the embryos marked for destruction
    are the so-called “surplus” from in vitro fertilization
    efforts.

    It is argued that they possess no
    heartbeat and have no determinate sex.  Supporters
    say the embryonic stem cell cluster is human, yes, but not a human being.  No one considers a cluster of human brain
    cells to be a human being, so what is the difference?

    The difference is the distinction between
    growth and change.  The difference
    between an ovum and an embryo is a substantial one of change.  That change in substance happens when the
    nuclei of the sperm and the egg fuse into a new single nucleus.  The result is a new, genetically unique,
    complete, and unified human being.  Ironically,
    the stem cells themselves testify to the unity of a new human being in that while
    they themselves are radically changing, they do so in a unified effort of
    growth in behalf of the person.

    The stem
    cells change, but the unified person simply grows.  This is the same way in which the cartilage
    in a two-year-old child’s skeleton changes to bone as the baby simply grows into
    adulthood.  And just like the child and
    the adult, so too are the embryo and child the same kind of thing.  The only differences between the embryo, the
    child, and the adult are those of growth and maturation.

    Some supporters deny the distinction between
    growth and substantial change, essentially arguing that a four-day-old embryo
    is not really a human being because we cannot see its humanity; it’s too small.  Or it is not a human being because it cannot develop
    without a mother to provide its material need for a uterus and placenta.  Or that it must not be a human being because
    it is slated for destruction anyway.

    Yet
    we justly condemn these arguments when applied to other types of people.  Bigots defended slavery by claiming an
    inability to see humanity in an African. 
    Reports of newborns left to die in garbage dumpsters do not compel us to
    deny the humanity of these babies simply because they do not have a mother to
    provide them with their material need for milk. 
    And we naturally recoil in horror at claims of communist Chinese harvesting
    vital organs from executed political prisoners. 
    We recoil despite our knowing that the prisoners were slated for
    destruction anyway.

    *******

    Once “the thing” becomes a blastocyst/zygote/embryo/fetus/whatever it is no longer simply a collection cells in the way that my hair is a collection of cells.  “The thing” is a complete, unified, organism.
     

    • amycas

      ” Once “the thing” becomes a blastocyst/zygote/embryo/fetus/whatever it is
      no longer simply a collection cells in the way that my hair is a
      collection of cells.  “The thing” is a complete, unified, organism.”

      It is a complete, unified organism that is using my body to further its existence. I have a right to refuse its use of my body.

      Bodily autonomy > right-to-life

      If you don’t believe me, then go try to make a law that forces people to donate blood/plasma.

      • Nordog

         Now that’s what I call compassion (not really).  At least we agree on what it is that you would destroy if you chose to exercise your full bodily autonomy.  That’s something.

        • amycas

          Yes, I have compassion for the woman who has to make this decision. Her right to make this decision is absolute: what decision she makes is not and it depends entirely on her individual situation (i.e. her needs, her family’s needs etc).

          Do you have any reason to believe that in this case, bodily autonomy does not trump right-to-life, when it does in all other cases?

          • Nordog

             “Do you have any reason to believe that in this case, bodily autonomy
            does not trump right-to-life, when it does in all other cases?”

            If you’re referring to a person in need of a blood transfusion not having the right to take blood from you, then I would reply that while this is true, autonomy doesn’t give you the right to dismember the one in need of a blood transfusion, or, alternately, autonomy does not give you the right to shove scissors into the base of his skull and suction his brains out.

            Of course, my observation here doesn’t even touch on your apparent inability to recognize the unique relationship between the unborn child and the mother.  Instead you appear to view the unborn as parasite or cancer.

            Reminds me of the astonished journalist who had been told by Mother Teresa that the greatest threat to world peace was abortion.  The journalist didn’t understand.  Mother Teresa said, “How can we expect one nation to love another if we don’t even expect a mother to love the child in her womb?”

            But hey, you got autonomy going for you.  So there’s that.

            • LeftSidePositive

              If that blood transfusion patient (or anyone for that matter) was invading my body and causing me pain I would sure as hell use whatever deadly force was necessary to remove that threat to my physical safety.

              Who the hell are you to decide what the relationship between the mother and the unborn is? If she wants to be pregnant, she doesn’t need you lurching over her, and if she views the pregnancy as a parasite, she has every right to do what she wants to it. And if Mother Teresa thought she could “expect” people to have certain feelings in their most personal situations, then she was a pompous busybody.And Mother Teresa was also a disgusting charlatan who denied pain relief to desperate patients and unethically redirected funds away from medical care toward religious endeavors. I wouldn’t trust her any farther than I could throw her.

              • Nordog

                 Well, there you have it.

                • Patterrssonn

                   there you have what? MT’s idiot statement?

                • Ndonnan

                  True,what do you say to that???

                • Nordog

                  What do I say to that?  Some things like LSP’s statement are so full of bile and bigotry that it’s best to let it speak for itself.  If it works for you, well, there you go.

                • amycas

                  What bigotry exactly? Who is LSP being bigoted against??

                • Nordog

                  Bigotry against the most innocent and weak among us: The unborn.  LSP sees the unborn as little more that parasites, invaders of the womb.  It’s both sick and sad really.  Now don’t get me wrong, withing the confines of the concept of secondary effect I have no problems with the lose of a fetus to save the life of the mother.  But for someone like LSP it’s an immediate jump to the parasite equation.  Sick.  Sad.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  Yes, a fetus who is not wanted by the mother is, by definition, a parasite:

                  parasite |ˈparəˌsīt|nounan organism that lives in or on another organism (its host) and benefits by deriving nutrients at the host’s expense.• derogatory a person who habitually relies on or exploits others and gives nothing in return.Knowingwhat wordsmean is not”bigotry.”And it doesn’t matter how “vulnerable” you are, that NEVER gives you free reign to take over someone else’s body.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  “I have a right to control my own body” is bigotry?!?!?!
                  What the FUCK??

                  “I have a right to determine my own emotional responses to my own life” is bigotry?!?!?!

                  What the FUCKETY FUCK??

                  Calling out someone who is being an asshole for being an asshole is not bigotry. It’s accuracy.  I provided reasons for why Mother Teresa was an asshole.  You need to go to the dictionary–what you’re calling “bigotry” is actually pronounced “accountability.”

              • Rwlawoffice

                 Typical Hitchens Bs about Mother Teresa.  She spent her entire adult life caring for the forgotten poor of India. She died with no material possessions and the admiration of the world with the exclusion of jerks like Hitchens who complained about her from the comfort of his apartment while she was caring for people in the slums.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  It is a matter of public record that Mother Teresa denied patients pain medication and conducted baptisms without their consent.  As horrific as that is, it won’t go away just by you calling it “Bs.”  And whether or not she had personal possessions at her death doesn’t change the fact that she misdirected funds from their medical purpose to proselytize.  And you can’t really call it “caring” for people if you refuse to give them pain meds.

                • Kodie

                  No, Mother Teresa was an asshole. The fact that you’ve become aware of this and deny it says a lot more about what you’re about.

                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jj54GBWTUMc

            • Ndonnan

              Good reasoning Nordog

              • amycas

                You forgot to put /sarcasm at the end of that.

                • Ndonnan

                  N o Amy i dont need to

                • amycas

                  Because everything you say is sarcasm? Oh now I get it. ;-)

            • amycas

              ” Of course, my observation here doesn’t even touch on your apparent
              inability to recognize the unique relationship between the unborn child
              and the mother.”

              Fuck off. I’ve been pregnant. I had a miscarriage. that didn’t change my view about abortion though.  My life’s value is not dependent on my ability to have or conceive babies. Don’t presume to know what I’ve gone through in my life.

              Also, you might want to look into the type of women who have abortions. A majority of women who have an abortion are already mothers.

              Again: fuck off.

              • Nordog6561

                “My life’s value is not dependent on my ability to have or conceive babies. Don’t presume to know what I’ve gone through in my life.”

                Oh, I haven’t presumed to know what you’ve gone through.  I only observed that you have an “apparent inability to recognize the unique relationship between the unborn child and the mother.”

                Now apparently your life’s value is not dependent on your ability to have or conceive babies, but on the compulsion to defend the killing of them.

                You know, I normally don’t go here, but, fuck off yourself.

                • amycas

                   It’s a compulsion to defend the rights of women. I will tell you to fuck off for as long as you argue against the rights of women. Especially when you make arguments like you and rw have in this thread that say rape victims should be held responsible for carrying the fetus of their rapists, and then also claim that if I don’t want to be pregnant, then I should have sex. Which is it? If consent to sex is consent to pregnancy, then a rape victim never consented and therefore should have a right to expel the fetus from her body.

                  By claiming that I don’t understand the “unique relationship” a woman has with her unborn child (if she wishes to carry it to term, I’ll accept that terminology), you were presuming to know what I’ve been through in life. Now, go adopt some children, fight for easier access to birth control and comprehensive sex education, and then I might believe that you care even a little bit about saving the lives of children. Until then, it’s safe to assume that you actually only care about controlling those dirty sluts (even the dirty sluts who didn’t choose to have sex in the first place).

      • Rwlawoffice

         It is simply rationalization to try and argue that body autonomy is a greater right then the right to life.  For the same reason you cannot force someone to give blood to save the life of another you cannot justify the killing of another person to help another person. if you think that you cannot force someone to give blood to save another life, how can you justify the killing of another person for the benefit of another person? 

        • LeftSidePositive

          Um, have you ever heard that old saying “Give me Liberty or give me death?”  Yeah, bodily autonomy is much more important.

          And your blood donation analogy is DEEPLY flawed.  The blood donor is the one who is giving part of their body to the recipient.  They have the right to withdraw this support, even if it means the death of the recipient. And, the “benefit” to the other person is simply the right to use her very own body, which is not so much a “benefit” as a baseline expectation.

          Moreover, you actually CAN kill another person to help another–if one person is causing harm to another’s body or property and deadly force is necessary to extricate the person having their body or goods violated, then yes, in fact, the state and the individual have the right to use deadly force.

    • AxeGrrl

      Once “the thing” becomes a blastocyst/zygote/embryo/fetus/whatever it is no longer simply a collection cells in the way that my hair is a collection of cells. “The thing” is a complete. unified organism.

       
      ‘Complete’ only in terms of things needed for it to potentially become a baby/independent human being.
       
      But it’s not truly ‘complete’ until it has developed into a baby/independent human being.  That’s precisely why there are terms for different stages.
       
      A zygote/blastocyst could become a baby/independent human being, but unless it does, it’s NOT a baby/independent human being.
       
      This is precisely what  Marco hit on the head with his  “if my grandmother had wheels, she would be a bicycle” comment a few posts back.
       

    • Patterrssonn

      “The thing” is a complete, unified, organism.”  So is Guardia Lambula, it doesn’t mean people should be forced to host it.

      • Nordog

        Yes, but this particular complete unified organism is a human being.  That you see no substantive difference between a human being and protozoa says volumes about your moral and intellectual bankruptcy.

        The other thing that give testimony to that bankruptcy is that the point being made by citing the completeness and unification of the organism was to demonstrate that it was substantively different than a clump of hair, or an appendix.  As a complete unified HUMAN organism is was a thing quite different from cells from a human.  These are not cells from a human, they ARE a human.  It is the difference between the part and the whole.

        • LeftSidePositive

          Your philosophical jump from being composed of human cells to being morally an intellectually a human is a non-sequitir.

          So, does the humanity of the cells that then develop into the placenta and chorionic membranes get revoked?

          If human cloning is developed to the point that we CAN make skin cells into full people (not suggesting we should!) does a skin cell become a complete organism as soon as it is sloughed off?

          What does “complete” and “unified” even MEAN, from a biological perspective, and why should biology = destiny? How can a clump of cells be a whole human without a heart, liver, or brain?

          • Nordog

            “What does “complete” and “unified” even MEAN, from a biological perspective, and why should biology = destiny? How can a clump of cells be a whole human without a heart, liver, or brain?”

            Ah yes, the feminist mantra: Biology is not destiny!  And who said abortion didn’t equal feminism.

            I did not make a philosophical jump from being composed of human celss to being morally and intellectually a human.  There are blankets made of human hair taken from other “non-persons” back in the ’30s and ’40s.  Those blankets are not humans.  That’s been my whole point.  It’s one thing to disagree with the point being made.  It’s quite another to have missed it all along.

            I refer not to what is composed of human cells, but rather to a human composed of cells.

            Again, with your concern of the placenta, you get lost in the parts at the expense of the whole while missing any understanding of unity in an organism (human organism in this case).  That’s like saying it’s okay to chop off someone’s head because it’s okay to cut their hair.

            “How can a clump of cells be a whole human without a heart, liver, or brain?”

            By being a fetus in the process of developing his heart, liver, and brain.

            • LeftSidePositive

              You have still utterly failed to provide any argument as to why an embryo has any moral weight, or indeed has any of the qualities that we care about in humans. And “potential” for moral weight doesn’t count for a damn thing until it actually FULFILLS the potential. Something is complete because it has the potential to be complete? That means that every incomplete thing is actually complete!!  Something is whole when it’s still developing its parts?? What utter bollocks!

              How does a “human organism” have “unity” when a substantial portion of its biomass is going to form into a placenta? You haven’t addressed that, nor do you have anything but the most muddled grasp of what “unity” and “completeness” could even possibly mean in this context.

              • Rwlawoffice

                 So according to your logic a newborn that he done nothing but breath has not moral weight and and be killed with impunity. 

                • LeftSidePositive

                  No, you motherfucking strawmanning idiot, a newborn is actually generally aware enough to be considered sentient for the purposes of this discussion. And, it is independent physiologically so it can be cared for by anyone without having to encroach on anyone’s rights. Furthermore, the vast majority of newborns have people who are close to them and are invested in their wellbeing and care about their survival (and no one person’s needs supersede that of the newborn because it’s not inside anyone’s body, having been, you know, BORN and all).

                  This really wouldn’t be hard for you to grasp if you weren’t such a willfully ignorant intellectually dishonest dipshit.

        • amycas

           I don’t care if it is a human being. Why does it get to have rights to my body?? There is no other situation in which somebody else is allowed to have rights to use my body to stay alive.

          • Nordog

            Yes, off with its head, the little bugger!

          • Rwlawoffice

             There is no other situation where the life if an innocent human being is killed for the convenience of another. 

            • Parse

              I beg to differ.  At minimum, read the paragraph about the Bugatti, and the three paragraphs immediately afterwards.  How is that not killing people for convenience?

            • AxeGrrl

              You keep sidestepping the point that a zygote/blastocyst ISN’T a “human being”………it has the potential to become a human being.

              If it doesn’t develop past the point of being a zygote/blastocyst, then it ISN’T a human being yet,  it’s a human zygote/blastocyst.

              Yet again, the potential to someday become a human being isn’t the same thing as BEING one.

              • Nordog6561

                 No, it’s a human being.  Different from an adult only in it’s degree of maturation.  The significant change comes at fertilization.  Any other at which a person is declared to be a human being is a de facto declaration based on different points in that continual process of maturation.

            • amycas

              Answer the fucking question asshole. Why does it get to have rights to my body when there is no other situation in which somebody is allowed to do this??

              • Nordog6561

                 The real question is how did so many people become so debased such that mothers view their child as a sexual assailant in need of killing?  And how did they convince themselves that the idea “autonomy” somehow justified the unfettered right to kill unborn human beings?

                That’s the question.

                • amycas

                   No, answer my question. Right now it looks like you’re dodging it. In case you forgot, here it is: Why does it get to have rights to my body when there is no other situation in which somebody is allowed to do this??

                  Also, Fuck off.

  • LeftSidePositive

    Yay George Carlin reference!

  • LeftSidePositive

    No, there is absolutely no valid secular argument for allowing the state to exploit someone’s body against her will and subject her to definite physiological changes, incredible amounts of pain, and the very real risk of serious medical complications up to and including death.

    So, if you don’t believe in inalienable rights, may I then enslave you and flog you repeatedly? There are many valid secular arguments that can be made for both positions, and I think that things like the morality of slavery and torture don’t have a clear cut right answer. To talk as if anti-enslaving-Anon and anti-torturing-Anon arguments are the only ones with any merit or worthy of consideration is both patronising and factually wrong.

    • Rwlawoffice

       The state isn’t exploiting anyone’s body. The state is protecting the life of the innocent and most vulnerable in our society.  That is a very valid secular purpose and and the most basic  inalienable right- the right to life.

      • LeftSidePositive

        Are you too fucking stupid to understand that a womb is IN A WOMAN’S BODY???  That woman is having her body exploited when the state decides the fetus in it gets protection when she doesn’t.  That woman is having her body exploited when she is treated like a fucking incubator who must put her right to bodily autonomy on hold for the sake of a mindless sac of tissue.

        And, for the umpteenth time: THE RIGHT TO LIFE NEVER INCLUDES THE RIGHT TO SOMEONE ELSE’S BODY. Period. Patients in end-stage renal disease don’t get to use someone else’s body against zir will to ensure their right to life, so why should fetuses be any different? Why the fuck are you too stupid to understand that?  Do you just have conditional woman-blindness and you can’t fucking see that we are people and we have lives that don’t revolve around baby-making?

        • Rwlawoffice

           You know typing in all caps does not make your argument any better.  The fact that the other human being is inside the body of another human being doesn’t give one person more rights then the other. They each have the same right to life.  The right to life is not dependent upon the consent of one person no matter how many times you say it.  They each share that same right.  sorry if that means that as a woman you have to bear the biological connection for a while but that does of give you the right to kill another human being.   Between the “right” you have to your body for a period of nine months and the right of an innocent child to be born I will side with the child.

          I love women and believe they are far more then baby makers, but when a baby is made then that baby has rights.  I don’t care that label you put on it during its stage of development it is still a human being and in alot of cases (maybe 50%) it is a a female. You are taking away that females right to live because as a female you think your rights trump hers.  i don’t agree  and if you as a fowl mouthed feminist thinks that makes me a women hater so be it,

          • LeftSidePositive

            The fact that the other human being is inside the body of another human being doesn’t give one person more rights then the other.

            Well, for one thing, you’ve still failed to establish a fetus is even a person.  For another, the fact that one human is inside another’s body DOES in fact mean that it is incapable of making it’s own decisions, and that it exists at the pleasure of the body sustaining it. Anything less would revoke the sustainer’s rights to her body.

            They each have the same right to life.

            Which means that if one of them wants to live independently, she has the right to do so.  And if the other one CAN’T live independently, then tough shit for them.

            The right to life is not dependent upon the consent of one person no matter how many times you say it.

            You are arguing against decades of human rights precedent, so you’re going to have to offer up a better case than that.  You might want to read up on the Nuremberg code…

            sorry if that means that as a woman you have to bear the biological connection for a while

            FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU UP YOUR MOTHERFUCKING ASS!!!This level of dismissal of women’s rights is ASTOUNDING in its callousness and condemns women to pain, suffering, and medical complications and permanent second-class citizenship status.  For you to be so smug and trivializing about how women suffer during pregnancy shows you have no human decency.  Many women would rather DIE than endure an unwanted pregnancy, and even those who don’t can have lifelong psychological trauma from the experience.NO ONE has the right to force another human being to bear any kind of “biological connection,” nor does anyone have the right to use their crackpot ideas as a justification from withholding medical care from another person.

            but that does of give you the right to kill another human being.

              Yeah, actually it does.  If a someone breaks in to my house I have the right to shoot them, and if someone breaks into my womb I will defend myself.

            Between the “right” you have to your body for a period of nine months

            Don’t you DARE put my rights in quotes, you motherfucking scumbag!  I retain the rights to my body AT ALL TIMES because I am a human being and I deserve human dignity.

            and the right of an innocent child to be born

            No one ever has a right to be born.  Being born is a process that requires another human being, and no one ever has the right to the use of another human being against zir will.

            I will side with the child.

            When it’s in your body you may make whatever choices you want for it, but when it is in someone else’s it is NONE OF YOUR FUCKING BUSINESS.

            I love women and believe they are far more then baby makers,

            Actions speak louder than words, shithead.

            but when a baby is made then that baby has rights.

            You have still failed to provide a SINGLE argument for any instance where a living person gets to exploit someone else’s body, and yet we’re supposed to just take your word for it that pregnant women’s rights are fungible…bullshit.

            I don’t care that label you put on it during its stage of development it is still a human being

            Argument from assertion is not a valid argument. Ignoring biology and neuroscience to make your assertions is even less valid.

            You are taking away that females right to live

            NO ONE’S right to live includes the right to use someone else’s body. EVER. Female or not.  You have not provided a single counterexample to this principle, so put up or shut up.

            because as a female you think your rights trump hers.

             If she’s in my body, then by definition I have rights and she doesn’t, because I am under no obligation to suffer anything through my body. This is not difficult.

            and if you as a fowl mouthed feminist

            First, learn to spell “foul.” And second, you are so utterly odious that profanity is necessary to even approximate an adequate description of your vile, festering disregard for equality and human rights, not to mention your atrocious faults of reasoning and pigheaded repetitious pronouncements, that calling you out in a manner you deserve is a public service.

            • Rwlawoffice

               No matter how many times you say it or how foul your language is, when you make the comment that if one person can’t live independently of another person than “tough shit for them” you have said all I need to know about how dear you really hold human life.  You don’t so you can quit pretending that you do. As far as the principal that no one has the right to use someone else’s body for life, in my opinion you are simply wrong when that life is a unborn baby. We will forever disagree about that, but the fact that you believe it doesn’t make it right and you have shown nothing which makes it so.

              The simple fact that you believe that because I am pro life and fight for the protection of the unborm child makes be anti woman shows just how prejudiced and bigoted you really are. The two don’t equate no matter how hard you try to make them so. 

              • LeftSidePositive

                I hold human life very dear, because I realize that life is more than just biological processes, and our rights and our dignity are paramount.

                I am wrong “when that life is a [sic] unborn baby”?!?!? What POSSIBLE justification do you have for that?! The very fact that you’d say that shows that you are giving fetuses extra rights at the expense of women, thereby punishing women for our biology, and that is fucked up.

                You have failed to address the concept of consent. You have failed to UNDERSTAND the concept of consent. You have failed to even reference any standing human rights law. You have just stuck your fingers in your ears and said you don’t believe it.

                Nope, it’s not bigoted to hold you accountable for your disgusting views. “Fighting for the protection of the unborn child” cannot mean anything else but forcing women to submit to unwanted pregnancy.  You have made statements directly in favor of forced pregnancy. You have treated wombs as disembodied organs, and you have minimized or outright erased women from their own experiences of pregnancy. If you advocate forcing a woman to be pregnant against her will, and minimize the suffering that such a pregnancy is likely to cause her, you are by definition anti-woman.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   This is where we will forever disagree.  I understand the concept of consent. I disagree with your belief that this right to consent includes killing an unborn child. If you think that makes me anti woman so be it.  Your opinion of me really doesn’t concern me.

                  As far as you valuing human life, I will disagree with you that you value all human life.  I have seen enough of your posts to show me different. If that human life happens to be in a womb, according to you it has no value.

                   

                • LeftSidePositive

                  No, actually, you don’t understand the concept of consent. I have never seen anyone so hideously downplay their fellow human beings’ right to control their own bodies.

                  You have still failed to define what exactly you mean by human life, much less provided a rational justification for that definition.

                  You seriously need to fucking stop this “in a womb” bullshit.  INSIDE A LIVING BREATHING CONSCIOUS HUMAN BEING WHO HAS WANTS AND NEEDS AND DESIRES AND THE CAPACITY FOR EXISTENTIAL CRISIS, you damn fucking scumbag!  How callous and anti-woman are you!?!  You don’t even REFER TO US AS FUCKING PEOPLE most of the time you isolate our body parts in your pontifications as though uteri just float around in some mindless other dimension!  That makes you a fucking asshole and it shows you disregard women’s lives.  A fetus in a womb has immense value IF THE WOMAN WANTS IT THERE, and ONLY if the woman wants it there.  If she doesn’t want it in her womb, whatever “value” it may or may not have (you haven’t even defined what you mean by “value,” by the way!) is irrelevant because she has no obligation to give her body up to it.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   That is where we differ completely- I do not value human life, regardless of where it is, based upon whether somebody else wants it or not.  I fully understand that the unborn baby is living inside of a full grown woman, but that doesn’t change my thoughts about the need to protect it if that woman does not want it.  unlike you, I believe it has rights that need protection.  In every other part of our society we protect the vulnerable and innocent. Here you feel that is not necessary.  We disagree and always will.

                • LeftSidePositive

                  If you “protect” a fetus inside a woman against her will, you are enslaving the woman.  That makes you a fucking douchebag and a disgrace to the principles of human rights.

                  A baby cannot be unborn.  A baby is, by definition, a recently-born human.

                  And, you’re just fucking wrong.  IN NO OTHER PART OF SOCIETY WHATSOEVER do we trash some people’s civil rights and violate their bodies in order to give advantage to other people, no matter how dire their need.

                  We will always disagree because you are an unthinking idiot who cannot get past your trite little talking points long enough to develop some empathy for ACTUAL human beings, instead of fetishizing fetuses.

          • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

            The problem is, a person’s opinion about abortion cannot be right or wrong. It depends solely on that person’s personal ethics. Two equally good people can have completely different opinions: one may see a fetus as equivalent to a fingernail, another as equivalent to an adult human being.

            The value of a fetus is not something that can ever be established in an unambiguous way. In such cases, societies look to a consensus to establish broad ethical codes and legal standards. But in the case of abortion, there is no consensus. So what should a rational society do? It should do nothing. It should err on the side of protecting the rights of the woman, who (by consensus) is a person, when those rights come into conflict with those of a fetus (whose rights are not recognized by consensus as existing).

            Until such time as there exists a societal consensus that a fetus is a person, government should not restrict abortions. It is the responsibility of the individual to follow her conscience on the matter. If you think a fetus is a person, you should not have an abortion. But you are exceeding your authority to attempt to require others to believe as you do.

            • Nordog

              Parallel Version:

              “The problem is, a person’s opinion about slavery
              cannot be right or wrong. It depends solely on that person’s personal ethics.
              Two equally good people can have completely different opinions: one may see an
              African as equivalent to a fingernail, another as equivalent to an human being.
              “The value of an African is not something that can ever be established in an
              unambiguous way. In such cases, societies look to a consensus to establish
              broad ethical codes and legal standards. But in the case of slavery, there is
              no consensus. So what should a rational society do? It should do nothing. It
              should err on the side of protecting the rights of the property owner, who (by
              consensus) is a person, when those rights come into conflict with those of an African
              (whose rights are not recognized by consensus as existing).
              “Until such time as there exists a societal consensus that an African is a
              person, government should not restrict slavery. It is the responsibility of the
              individual to follow his conscience on the matter. If you think an African is a
              person, you should not own slaves. But you are exceeding your authority to
              attempt to require others to believe as you do.”

              • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                I agree. I consider slavery to have been perfectly ethical in societies that adopted it. In fact, it was the norm in most societies throughout most of history, and helped make those societies functional and successful. It was accepted as ethical by consensus, and was, therefore ethical. I am certainly not prepared to suggest that most humans throughout history were “bad” simply because they operated under different ethical standards than we currently consider “normal”. Slavery ceased to be ethical when societies redefined their ethics.

                Someday people my look back on us with horror because we killed animals and ate them. By their standards, we would be judged as evil. Does that make us so now? Certainly not.

                Someday, consensus might shift and zygotes might be considered people. In that case, society will rightfully treat abortion as murder. But that consensus does not exist now, and therefore abortion isn’t murder, and isn’t even unethical by societal standards.

            • Rwlawoffice

              Not true. Morality is not based upon a consensus. If so, that would make the holocaust ethical.  until 1973 the consensus in this country was that a fetus was a person that deserved protection. That was changed not by a majority of Americans but by a consensus of 7-2. Currently, the majority of people in America oppose abortion. Does that mean that the fetus is now a person that deserves protection?

              If you base your idea of what is ethical upon what the majority of the society believes is ethical then you will be able to try and justify any atrocity.

              • Kodie

                 So you are saying what is moral and what is an atrocity – while the SCOTUS favored against your opinion. The only reason the majority thinks an embryo is a human being with the same rights accorded any other human being is due to an overwhelming majority of them having religious beliefs considering the soul of the individual to be more sacred than anyone’s actual life, including that of a newborn. You are equating abortion with a holocaust in the sense of what morality is all about and pro-choice is all about being Hitler. So, Godwin. Don’t get any moles scraped off. Your perspective is an illusion, and the court changed the law because it was the right thing to do. Nobody is trying to justify any atrocities here, you’re the one trying to invent one from nothing.

                • Nordog6561

                   Moles, ticks, no atrocities here.  Yeah, right.

              • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                Fine, you’re a moral absolutist. I’m not. Neither position is an objective one, however, but depends on nothing more than personal philosophy.

                The Holocaust was unethical within the ethics of that society because it operated without a consensus; the majority of people did not know its extent. Genocide, however, has been a part of human culture since we had culture. It has been part of how societies preserved and protected themselves, in order to survive and produce more people, which is the only objective measure of success recognized by nature. I don’t see genocide as inherently unethical or immoral; it must be judged by the standards of the society under which it occurs.

                There has been no consensus about abortion, or the “personhood” of a fetus, for hundreds of years. Recent court decisions have simply recognized that, and removed restrictions accordingly.

                • Rwlawoffice

                  At least you are consistent.  I will give you that , but I would disagree with you about the consensus regarding the fetus.  How much makes it a consensus? Over 50% 60% 70%? Who decides what that consensus needs to be before something becomes ethical?  

                  Do we put all moral decisions to a vote?  If the consensus was that pedophilia was ethical would call that moral? Because one society makes it ethical dos that not mean that it wrong as a principle?  Is the Taliban correct in stoning women for adultery because the consensus of that society thinks it is right? If the consensus within society was that father’s could have sex with their daughters, would that make it ethical?

                  Since the majority of the people in this country are Christians, would it be ethical for them to pass a law that as an atheist you had no right to free speech? Or a job?  I’m not saying constitutional, I’m saying ethical based upon your standard that if the consensus of the society says its ok then it is therefore ethical.  

                • http://dogmabytes.com/ C Peterson

                  I’d say something starts being a consensus large enough to base major societal rules on when support (or lack of support) gets up above 90% or so. Nearly everybody has to agree. For instance, how many people think murder should be legal? There is a real consensus on that.

                  This is not a matter of putting something to a vote. 51% is not a consensus.

                  There is a difference between the ethos of a society and its laws. Typically, laws eventually reflect the ethos, but it can take a while. That’s why we see legal support for same sex marriage lagging actual support, and why we saw laws permitting abortion lagging actual support.

          • http://twitter.com/crankyhumanist Cranky Humanist

            LefSidePositive’s lack of composure aside, you have failed to address her fundamental point which is that the law does not protect one person’s right to life at the expense of another person’s bodily autonomy. Even if we agree for the sake of argument that a person is a person from the very moment of fertilization, that person’s right to life does not trump another person’s bodily autonomy.

            If you needed my rare blood type to live, the law could not compel me to donate blood for your use, even though it would represent only a tiny inconvenience for me. We could all agree that it would be wrong for me to NOT give you my blood, but that doesn’t mean the law can or should compel me to give it to you. By not donating my blood I would arguably be causing your death, but that doesn’t make it murder.

            • Rwlawoffice

              Up until Roe v. Wade the law did protect the rights of the unborn to live despite the body autonomy of the woman.  The fact that it doesn’t now is of no consequence and doesn’t make it right that this shit has taken place. The law changed, not the moral right to life.  The truth is that up until that point the law recognized that whatever body autonomy that the lady had, she lost part of that once she became pregnant. 

              • amycas

                 Yes, that’s right, up until Roe v. Wade the government violated a woman’s right to her body. Actually it’s more complicated than that, because some states allowed it and others didn’t, and in fact until the late 19th Century, there was almost no opposition to it. It was seen as a decision made between a woman and her doctor. I do not lose bodily autonomy when I become pregnant, that would make me less than human.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   You do realize that you don’t have bodily autonomy even when you are not pregnant.  You can’t get someone else’s help to commit suicide, you can’t take the drugs you may want to take that have been ruled illegal and even now the move is afoot that we can’t eat everything we want. 

                  I am of the opinion that when you become pregnant you have lost some of your bodily autonomy, not because you are a woman, but because there is another life you are caring for. That life has a right to be protected.  On that we will have to disagree. 

                • http://twitter.com/crankyhumanist Cranky Humanist

                   There’s a big difference between limiting the things you are allowed to do with your body, and forcibly requiring you to do something with your body for someone else. I notice, for example, you didn’t address my blood donation analogy.

                  It’s not spurious, either. I was reading about a case that actually went to trial where a donor match was identified (I think it was a for a kidney), but the match refused to donate. The critically ill person sued, trying to get the person to donate, but lost the case (as was appropriate).

                  I would encourage you (and anyone reading this) to mull over Judith Jarvis Thomson’s classic 1971 essay “A Defense of Abortion,” which you can find on the web (I’d post the link but last time I tried that my comment never went through so I’m feeling superstitious). I’d be curious to hear your response to it.

                  Lastly, I agree that the law does not necessarily align with what “is right,” but I said so up front. We can agree that a woman “should” carry a pregnancy in many cases but still not impose it on her by law. We can agree that a passerby “should” intervene in a violent assault, too, without punishing him for failing to do so.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Interesting article but in my opinion not convincing.  The fundamental problem with the argument is that it presupposes that the obligations that a mother owns to her own child is equal to that owed to a stranger and that how we treat a stranger is morally equivalent to how we treat a stranger. It isn’t.  Both the father and the mother are legally obligated to support their child regardless of whether the conception was planned or an accident. 
                  For example, I have no right to provide medical care to a total stranger, but if i without medical care for one of my children I will be charged with child endangerment.  If I withhold food from my children and they die I will be charged with murder, but no such argument is true for withholding food from a stranger. The duty arises from the parent child relationship.  That duty should not and cannot morally arise simple upon birth and to say otherwise is an attempt to justify abortion and nothing else.

                  It further assumes that even though two people made that child, only one has the right to say what happens to it.  Take for example the father who took every precaution to prevent the pregnancy. The fact that he is a father is equally accidental that the mother is a mother. But, according to this theory, nine months of bodily disruption gives the women the complete right to decide if he is forever obligated to that child.   

                • amycas

                  Give me an example of a parent held accountable for withholding medical care from a child for refusing to donate a kidney/blood/plasma. No parent would ever be charged with medical neglect for not supplying a kidney, so why should I be charged with anything for not supplying my entire body?? Again, I must say, fuck off.

                • Rwlawoffice

                  You do not have unlimited bodily autonomy over your body when it comes to your children. Let me give you an example where the courts have said so.  In 2004 Melissa Rowland, a woman pregnant with twins was told that she needed a c-section to deliver her twins. She refused saying that she did not want a scar on her body.  She was told that if she didn’t her children might die. she said she didn’t care if they died, she didn’t want a scar.  By the time she finally agreed it was too late and one of the babies indeed died. Had she agreed at first the baby would have survived.  She was charged with murder.

                  The reason that you should be held to abuse if you withhold what your child needs to survive after it is born and dependent upon you is the same reason that you should  not be allowed to kill your child while it is in your womb- Once you become a mother, even if by accident, you have an affirmative duty to give that child what it needs to survive.  That is the legal and moral relationship between a mother and her child. The law recognizes it in every other situation and very well could recognize it in the failure to give a kidney or blood. 

                  Again I say, have a great day.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                   [Citation Needed]

                • Kodie

                  I found several interesting citations on the case: 
                  Here is one:
                  http://www.thenation.com/article/pregnant-and-dangerous

                  Google 2004 Melissa Rowland

                  Spoiler: (Utah dropped the murder charge, and she never protested the c-section).

                • Rwlawoffice

                   The article you cited says that she did refuse to do the c-section and plead guilty to child endangerment for harm done to the children in her womb.  I guess the state of Utah does not agree with your absolute bodily autonomy claim.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                   Thanks, I knew rwlawoffice had to be spinning that.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   You and Kodie have shown the true extent of your moral depravity.  You have worshiped at the alter of Bodily autonomy so long that you have lost all semblance of what is moral.  A woman intentionally creating life with the intent on killing it for purposes of an art project is deemed moral in your twisted minds.  All humanity should shutter at that thought.  And you have the audacity to claim that pro life supporters dehumanize women.  In addition to being morally bankrupt you are delusional. 

                • Kodie

                  I grew tomatoes for the science fair. What’s the difference?

                  You are really making way too much of a fetus to have the audacity to call anyone delusional

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                   You are a woman-hating authoritarian asshole who would love to see us all as nothing more than walking incubators for TEH BABBIES.

                  Who’s “dehumanizing” whom,  here?

                • Nordog6561

                  You really are depraved.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                   How, exactly, is it “depraved” to ensure that I am not adding to the overpopulation of the planet? How is it “depraved” to be a responsible adult, and make decisions about MY BODY, FOR MYSELF?

                  And how in the fuck is it “depraved” or “immoral” to put my physical and mental health ahead of, well, something squatting in my uterus? After all, if I don’t take care of myself, how am I supposed to take care of a baby?

                  I am very much NOT parent material, and I recognize this. I use birth control. And if I were to get pregnant, I would abort. Why? I’m on meds. Meds that might — I mean, I dunno for sure, but meds that could potentially result in a child with a disability or deformity. I, personally, would not want to be responsible for another person’s suffering.

                  What is truly depraved here is your insistence that a woman should, by virtue of having a uterus, be forced to remain pregnant even if it would kill her.

                • Nordog6561

                  “What is truly depraved here is your insistence that a woman should, by virtue of having a uterus, be forced to remain pregnant even if it would kill her.”

                  No, your depravity, in part, comes from the hysterical non sequitur and erroneous conclusions about me like the one I’ve quoted here.

                  Again, I said, “…in part.”

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                  Mmm, yeah, “hysterical”.

                  Sexist asshat.

                • Nordog6561

                  LOL.

                • Nordog6561

                  Another part would be continued hysteria like this…

                  “You are a woman-hating authoritarian asshole who would love to see us all as nothing more than walking incubators for TEH BABBIES.Who’s “dehumanizing” whom,  here?”

                • Rwlawoffice

                   The fact that you maintain that murder for a mural is moral, your opinion regarding me or what is dehumanizing has no credibility.  At best your position is amoral and monstrous. It is positions like this that make good people rise up and fight.  Keep it up so we can get our country back. 

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                   It’s not “murder”. Murder is when you take the life of a LIVING, BREATHING HUMAN BEING, i.e. one that has already been born. Disposing of a fetus is, legally, medically, ethically, and morally, no more a crime than disposing of a cancerous tumour.

                  I suspect, however, if you found a cancerous tumour, you’d be screaming to have it removed. Even though it has the same level of sentience as a fetus… Hypocrite.

                  Jackass.

                • Nordog6561

                  Repugnant.  Truly repugnant.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Even though your screen name is wmdkitty, you are one sick puppy.  Anyone you compares a unborn child to a cancerous tumor is amoral at best and truly evil. Up until this point I have refrained from calling you names and instead have focused on your positions, but this one took the cake. 

                  To say that killing a unborn child is “disposing of a fetus” shows just how far detached from humanity you really are.  To be consistent in your position, it would have to include partial birth abortions where all bu the head is born.  To you, this is still not morally wrong even though the only thing that doesn’t make it so is about five inches at best. 

                  By the way to use your sick analogy-  when have you ever heard of a cancerous tumor being born into a human, even by your definition of when that life begins?

                • amycas

                   And I think laws against suicide (assisted or not) and against drugs are wrong as well.

                  “I am of the opinion that when you become pregnant you have lost some of your bodily autonomy, not because you are a woman,”

                  Whoa, wait a minutes. When was the last time you knew a man to be able to be pregnant?? I have a right to my body regardless of who else may need it to survive.

          • amycas

             Being a willfully ignorant ass doesn’t make your argument any better either.

            You claim to love women, yet you would strip them of their bodily autonomy the moment some cells form in her uterus. That’s some love there. I’d hate to see what you would do to people you don’t love.

            • Rwlawoffice

               I will always comedown on the side of the saving the life of the most vulnerable and unprotected in our society  then on the side of the temporary loss of complete bodily autonomy. If you think that makes me unloving then so be it.

              • amycas

                 It’s not temporary you ass. Go learn shit about what pregnancy actually entails and the consequences thereof before you attempt to force others to undergo the process.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Just because I disagree with you, doesn’t mean I don’t know about pregnancy.   I know far more about it then you think. What I specifically know is that although it is possible the effects can last a lifetime, the pregnancy itself is temporary. 

                • amycas

                   If the affects of the pregnancy are not temporary, then it is not a temporary loss of bodily autonomy.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Assume for the sake of your argument that it is a permanent loss of bodily autonomy.  So what.  The loss of life for the fetus is permanent as well.  

                • Nordog6561

                   You forgot to say, “fuck off.”

                • amycas

                  And you forgot to argue against women’s rights for one post. People forget things sometimes. 

      • Miss_Beara

        A clump of cells are not part of our society. Women are not incubators. We have a right to our own uterii. 

        To echo what LSP said…

        “Do you just have conditional woman-blindness and you can’t fucking see that we are people and we have lives that don’t revolve around baby-making?”

  • Rwlawoffice

    For people here who pride themselves on thinking rationally and logically, that goes out the window when this topic comes up. All of the arguments about the possibilities that would have prevented your conception is far different then the arguments about aborting a conceived child. Frankly the notion that sperm equals a person is ludicrous and not convincing to us that are pro life.

    Also, despite all of the arguments here about how much atheists treasure life because there is no afterlife, those that are pro choice do not give that same protection to the unborn, regardless of how they were conceived.  It is the only place that you argue that the innocent have no rights and  that their life can be ended at the whim of another. It is the only place that you contend that the innocent should pay the ultimate penalty for the crime of another.

    And before we get into an endless argument about life beginning at conception or not, before we go down that path, when would you believe that life begins?

    Finally, I spent the weekend two weekends ago at the conference for the christian alliance for orphans. At that conference was a gentleman whose mother was raped and made the choice to keep the baby and give him up for adoption once he was born.  He is now married, a father, and an advocate for  adoption helping other children. Who can say that his life was not worth saving? Why should he have paid the death penalty for the crime of another person?

    • LeftSidePositive

      If the “whim of another” is the “whim” of the person WHOSE BODY IS AT RISK, then hell yeah they get to decide.

      We also argue that renal failure patients, no matter how innocent, do not have the right to another person’s body.

      A partially-formed fetus is not “paying the ultimate price” because it doesn’t have a brain, it doesn’t have a sense of self, and it doesn’t experience anything in existing or not existing.  Why are you so insistent on humanizing the fetus and erasing the woman?

      I believe that life began 4 billion years ago and it’s a continuous process.  I believe that individual human rights begin at birth.  There, that was simple.

      As for your example, if that was genuinely her choice then she is free to do what she wants.  However, the life he has NOW has absolutely no bearing on his “worth” when the fetus that became him was a mindless clump of differentiating tissue.  He wouldn’t have “gotten the death penalty,” he just wouldn’t have had access to another person’s body.

      • Rwlawoffice

         If you say that life begins at birth then for you life is defined by  location and nothing more.  That is the kind of irrational arguments that I was referring to when people try to justify the killing of another human being.

        The idea that a human being is not considered to be getting killed (“paying the ultimate price) because of its lack of awareness of itself would also justify killing newborns, older people with dementia, and people in comas. Are you for killing those as well.

        • LeftSidePositive

          No, you fucking miserable idiot, birth has a lot more to do than “location.” It marks the start of physiologic and metabolic independence.  There’s also the small matter of not using another person’s body, which has a hell of a lot more implications than just “location,” which you would realize if you weren’t a fucking douchebag who can’t see women as anything other than a “location.”

          You are begging the question–we do not agree a fetus is “a human being.”  “Being” implies awareness and agency.  Is a cow a “bovine being”?

          Newborns have a great deal more awareness than a fetus (especially a 9-week fetus which is when most abortions occur), and anyway they’re not tied to one person’s body so they can easily be handed over to another caregiver if someone is unable to care for them.

          Those with dementia HAVE experienced sentience, and have legal standing and needs, and they can generally feel pain and communicate rudimentarily.  Now, they generally need people to make decisions for them, and those decisions may well involve forgoing invasive medical care.

          People in comas likely have the potential to have consciousness again, and they have experienced consciousness, have strived for their goals in life, and had a sense of self that would be revived if brain function were restored.  For those patients who do not have the capacity to ever experience consciousness again, it is for their families or power of attorney to decide if and how they wish to withdraw life support.

    • Patterrssonn

      “when would you believe that life begins?”

      About 4 billion yrs ago

      • Rwlawoffice

         How does that answer the question? A baby that is conceived is not the same as the potential of one that isn’t. 

        • LeftSidePositive

          A baby isn’t conceived.  A baby is born.  A zygote is conceived.

          And an egg has marginally more potential than a sperm.  A zygote has more potential than either of them.  A post-implantation embryo has more potential than a zygote.  All the while, it’s still just POTENTIAL, so morally, that isn’t worth shit.

          • Rwlawoffice

             Wow i didn’t know that morality of the right to life is based upon potential.

            In another post you begged in such a nice fashion for a cite to show that fetuses feel touch and sense stimuli at 8 weeks,    Here is your cite

              http://www.ampainsoc.org/library/bulletin/jul03/article1.htm

            • LeftSidePositive

              No, if you were able to fucking read you’d know I was REFUTING your insinuation that “potential” is relevant to rights.
              Did you actually READ what you cited? Because it actually contradicts your argument.And the article was discussing procedures on already-born neonates, which are physiologically and neurologically VERY different from fetuses, not to mention the fact that simply by virtue of being “neonates” they are WAAAAY more developed than the vast majority of fetuses that get aborted.  The rest of the article actually REFUTED the idea that fetuses have sufficient thalamocortical involvement to experience pain, and said the reflexive movements of limbs early in pregnancy WAS NOT evidence of perception. The article also supported my points (and even went farther than I did) and said the experience of pain required perception, awareness and cognition, which a fetus does not have.

              So, yeah, read your sources more carefully; otherwise, you prove your opponent’s point and just end up looking like an idiot.

              • Rwlawoffice

                 I stated that at 8 weeks a fetus can respond to stimui. I never said anything about pain. 

                Here is the exact quote from what I cited;

                At 7.5 weeks’ gestation, reflex responses to somatic stimuli begin, and
                touching the perioral region results in a contralateral bending of the
                head. The palms of the hands become sensitive to stroking at 10.5 weeks,
                and the rest of the body and hindlimbs become sensitive at
                approximately 13.5 weeks. Shortly after the development of sensitivity,
                repeated skin stimulation results in hyperexcitability and a generalized
                movement of all limbs.

                It proves what I said. 

                • LeftSidePositive

                  That’s a reflex.  A fucking grasshopper has reflexes. I am not impressed. It doesn’t mean it “feels” and it doesn’t mean it has any level of awareness that makes it a morally significant agent.

                • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

                   I grew up on a lake, so I helped my mom clean a lot of fish as a kid.

                  A freshly decapitated fish responds to stimuli.  If you poke one, it wiggles and flops away from your finger.  Does that mean headless fish are aware of their surroundings?

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Margaret-Whitestone/100001682409207 Margaret Whitestone

      “At that conference was a gentleman whose mother was raped and made the choice to keep the baby and give him up for adoption once he was born. ”

      That’s right, *she* made the choice.  She didn’t have it imposed on her by moralizing busybodies who decided they knew better than she what was right for her, her body and her life.

    • Ndonnan

      True,sceince and reason go out the window when it affects their life!

      • amycas

        This isn’t about the science of whether or not it’s a human organism. It’s about women’s rights to bodily autonomy. This is a right that is not breached in any other circumstance. Why should my biology automatically give me fewer rights than others?

    • amycas

       “At that conference was a gentleman whose mother was raped and made the
      choice to keep the baby and give him up for adoption once he was born.”

      The key word in that sentence is “choice.”

  • TheAnalogKid

    If her mother had miscarried, she’d be accusing god of murder, right?

    • http://gloomcookie613.tumblr.com GloomCookie613

       Even better: We wouldn’t even have to be reading her drivel because she wouldn’t exist to accuse anyone!  Funny how that whole thing works, innit? :D

  • Ljblair1

    Having a child is not merely an inconvenience. It changes lives and your body. Many people are not emotionally or financially able to support a child, but because you seem to think that the value of a clump of cells, are more valuable than an existing life you cannot see that.
    What would you said to a woman with a health condition that meant she could deliver a healthy baby, but would most likely die in the process? Do it, because that child is a human life, and they should be given the chance to live at the expense of yours?
    What about a child that would be born with a debilitating genetic condition?
    What about drug addicts who are unwilling to receive care? Should they be forced to parent a child, which will quite possible be born an addict ?

    • Rwlawoffice

       What about adoption? What about life, even with a handicap is better then being killed?

      • LeftSidePositive

        Have you ever been pregnant?  Do you understand that it’s kind of a big fucking deal?

        Also, you’re conflating “being killed” with “never having existed.” A person with a sense of self is not the same as a might-have-been who isn’t even aware of the possibility of existing. And if you saw some of the suffering that I have from infants with deadly genetic conditions, you wouldn’t be so cavalier about this.

        • Rwlawoffice

           So the right to life depends on you knowing you are alive?  How does that effect the right of those that have dementia? Or those in a coma? Or those infants not old enough to have that realization?

          Yes I have seen far more suffering than I imagine you have and I do not take it cavalier.   I am also painfully aware of the plight of  handicapped children. The fact that some children are born with disabilities or genetic disorders in no way justifies abortion on demand as you seem to be saying,

          • LeftSidePositive

            I already answered the demented and comatose patients canard, so read the comments more carefully.

            So you’d prefer these children just be brought into the world and doomed to a brief life of unbearable suffering?  Seriously, what the fuck is WRONG with you?!

            And genetic mutations are irrelevant to the question of “abortion on demand.” Bodily autonomy of the mother, whatever the condition of the fetus, is more than adequate justification for abortion, even if you trivialize her needs by calling it “on demand” and treating her right to medical care like a cable channel.

            • Rwlawoffice

               I disagree with you that body autonomy trumps justifies abortion. I think it is a life worth protecting, you think it is something that can be treated like a parasite and you call me demented?

              • LeftSidePositive

                I never called you demented. I called you a dishonest fucking douchebag and an idiot.  There is a difference.

                I mentioned dementia in the context of your other strawman arguments, which I have already answered and you have senselessly repeated. Holy shit, your reading comprehension sucks!You may pompously say you “disagree,” but you are going against every established human rights principle there is.

                You can think whatever the fuck you want.  You can think aliens talk to you through your toaster for all I care. But don’t try to force your views on others, and don’t think your fucked-up worldview justifies denying people their right to medical care.

      • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

        I have severe chronic migraine, the kind migraine that tends to turn into ischemic stroke.   This condition is only manageable with a combination of daily preventative medications and abortive meds for when I get an attack.  Dosing is based on body weight.  If I gain weight, as tends to happen during a pregnancy, my medications will become less effective.  I am already taking the maximum allowable dose for both of my daily medications.

        Both of my daily medications are known teratogens, causing severe enough birth defects that my pharmacist pulled me aside to make sure I was using birth control before she would fill my prescription.

        I was born with only one kidney.  Being on my migraine meds is already putting a strain on that kidney.  Throwing a pregnancy into the mix could put me into kidney failure.

        Diabetes runs in my family.  I became insulin resistant at age 20.  The condition has since been reversed, but I had to lose 70 lbs to do it.  I’m virtually guaranteed to develop gestational diabetes.  If I can’t lose the pregnancy weight, I’m guaranteed type II diabetes. 

        My current migraine medications already cost the equivalent of a second rental home.  If I had to add my mom or dad’s daily medication bill (they’re both diabetic) to that monthly expense, I’d be financially sunk.

        I was also born with defects in my hip joints.  I sometimes dislocate my leg at the hip because I got up off the couch the wrong way.  A third trimester pregnancy belly would literally pull my torso off my legs every time I tried to stand.  I would be bedridden for the final months of pregnancy.  FMLA would keep me from losing my job, but it doesn’t mean I’ll get paid for those bedridden months.  As I mentioned earlier, it’s already a struggle to pay for my migraine medications.

        How would giving a child up for adoption address any of those issues?

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Margaret-Whitestone/100001682409207 Margaret Whitestone

           But you should give up your medically necessary medications for the sake of a fetus, and stroke out from your migraines, so you can give up a baby for adoption.  Never mind the fact that if you stroke out and possibly die it’s highly unlikely there will be any baby to give up for adoption.  Such logic never makes it into the brains of those who consider women disposable incubators for the exalted fetus. 

          • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

             You’re right.  After all, there’s no shortage of people wanting to adopt a baby with a medical history like mine.

        • Onamission5

          I’m waiting for one of our pet fundies to jump in here and have the audacity to tell you that you ought to remain celibate for the rest of your life. Mostly because I want to see you kick the shit out of them.

          • Ndonnan

            WOOF GRRRR

  • DG

    The kind of post that makes me want to flush my eyes after reading it. 

    • Glasofruix

       I do that every time i read your comments.

  • Jim

    I’m pro-choice, but I wonder about the logic of the anti-abortion folks who would carve out an exception for rape or incest. If your argument against abortion is that life begins at conception, then what difference does it make how you were conceived? 

    If someone believes that personhood – and all its attendant rights – begins at conception, then according to that premise, aborting a fetus conceived in rape is exactly as much a crime as murdering a baby for the same reason. The above ad makes perfect sense, if you’re starting from that premise. 

    When I hear someone say “except in cases of rape or incest,” I think “You just said that abortion is murder – since when do you make exceptions for murder?”

    • Nordog

       “I’m pro-choice, but I wonder about the logic of the anti-abortion folks
      who would carve out an exception for rape or incest. If your argument
      against abortion is that life begins at conception, then what difference
      does it make how you were conceived? ”

      Jim, I’m pro-life, or if you prefer, anti-abortion, and I agree with your observation here.

      • amycas

        Well, at least you’re consistent. Of course, this consistency would force you to try to force me to remain pregnant and relive the rape that put me in that situation every day. But at least a zygote wasn’t killed*!!

        *until after it’s born, then most anti-choicers don’t give a shit about what happens to the baby.

        • Nordog

          “until after it’s born, then most anti-choicers don’t give a shit about what happens to the baby.”

          That’s just more bigoted bullshit.  Ad hominem writ large.

          • LeftSidePositive

            Have you seen the state of our public schools? Defunding WIC? What about juvenile incarceration rates?!

            Actions speak louder than words, motherfucker!

            • Nordog6561

               The state of our public schools.  You mean the ones suffering for decades under the stranglehold of the far left teachers unions.

              • amycas

                “far left teachers unions” –it’s like calling something far left automatically means it’s bad and it’s the sole reason for the failure of public schools. For someone who doesn’t understand the definition of “ad hominem” you sure don’t hesitate to use it. Also, not all (or even most) teachers’ unions are left-wing. It really depends on what state you’re in.

          • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

            Then explain why the “pro-life” assholes are the very same people who want to take away things like WIC, TANF, food assistance, and the like.

            • Nordog6561

               Then explain why those budgets increase each and every year?

              Also, perhaps conservatives think that being a dependent to a state that’s going broke feeding all the dependents is not a good idea.

              I know liberals are constitutionally incapable of understanding that total dependence on the state is a bad idea.  They are after liberals.

              • Kodie

                 

                Also, perhaps conservatives think that being a dependent to a state
                that’s going broke feeding all the dependents is not a good idea.

                Funny coming from someone who thinks I’m pathetic and that I’ve lost my humanity. This is the perfect illustration of people who focus too much on abortions and not enough on the big picture. Do you value life? No, you do not seem to value life, not enough to contribute to the actual life, only to the hypothetical one.

                • Nordog6561

                   Yeah, you’re just making stuff up.  Completely constructed ad hominem.  You want to kill unborn babies so you compare them to ticks and make up lies about me.  As you’ve illustrated elsewhere, you actually know nothing about me.  You think that because I’m a Christian I’m pro-life because of faith in Jesus.  But the fact is I became pro-life as an atheist/agnostic who publicly rejected Christianity  and religion completely.

                  Pathetic.

                • amycas

                   What fucking ad hominem?! You just completely dismissed any arguments for financial assistance from teh government (even when that government forces you to have children you cannot afford/do not want) by calling them typical liberals without addressing any argument. How can you advocate forced births when you are against offering any kind of financial assistance?? You don’t really care about what happens to babies, you only care about controlling women. Fuck off.

                • Nordog6561

                   What ad hominem?  A: That prolife = being against children after they are born.

                  And is your habit you’ve jump to conclusions that are completely unsupported and non sequitur.  I am NOT against offering any kind of financial assistance.  I just don’t buy the liberal lie that to be for children you have to be for every last social program imagined.

                  I don’t buy your lies, even if you are obtuse enough to believe them yourself.

                • amycas

                   That’s not ad hominem, you jag. An ad hominem would be if I said,”what? you’re pro-life, then I’m immediately going to dismiss everything you say and not address your reasoning at all.” That hasn’t happened in this thread. I was merely making the observation that those who claim to be “pro-life” more oftne than not, don’t care a wit about what happens to those children who are born.

                  If anything, I was making a generalization, but that’s not an ad hominem.

                  Also, Fuck off.

          • amycas

             You apparently don’t know the definition of an ad hominem.

        • Rwlawoffice

           not true. There are pro life organizations that are specifically working to promote adoption, even of those babies conceived through rape. They also provide support to the mothers during the pregnancy.

          • LeftSidePositive

            “Even of those babies conceived through rape”??? What the fuck does that mean?  Why would an adoption agency care how a baby was conceived?
            And “support” is not enough to make up for a flagrant violation of bodily autonomy, and all the “support” in the world is never going to make up for the pain and suffering inherent in pregnancy, especially when it’s forced.

          • Kodie

             You do know that “alternatives to abortion” provide an image of support for mothers during pregnancy to give them hope that they may be able to financially cope with a child after all, only to wait just long enough that she gets emotionally attached to the child and no longer wants to abort. Then they turn the screws on and tell her she is out of her mind if she thinks she can support a child, she is all alone and a sinner and no role model for an innocent baby, so she had better give it up. Your religious beliefs can be a real asshole when there’s a healthy white baby up for grabs.

            http://jezebel.com/5351936/crisis-pregnancy-centers-creating-artificial-orphans

          • amycas

             What if I just don’t want to be pregnant? No amount of “support” during my pregnancy will negate the fact that I don’t want to be pregnant in the first place. What if I was raped, and I don’t want to be reminded (by my own body) every day of the violation that happened to me?

            I almost forgot: fuck off.

    • LeftSidePositive

      Even if personhood begins at conception (and I still think the “personhood” argument is bullshit), aborting a fetus would not be murder–it would be self-defense, because the fetus is using the woman’s body and causing her demonstrable suffering and medical risk.  All the attendant rights of personhood NEVER include access to someone else’s organs against their will, so what these “personhood” bozos are advocating is not actually giving fetuses the rights of persons; rather, they are advocating stripping rights away from persons and giving the pre-born substantially MORE rights than anyone else.

      • ReadsInTrees

         The argument of whether or not an embryo is a person can be easily solved with one scenario:
        You’re at a fertility clinic, and there’s suddenly a fire. You are in position to save either someone’s four-year-old child or a freezer containing a hundred embryos. Which do you grab to save? If an embryo was REALLY a life, then the obvious solution would be to save the hundred “lives” in the freezer and let the four-year-old die, right? One hundred lives versus a single life, right? Despite this, I’m pretty sure even the most pro-life Christian is going to grab the child rather than let them perish.

      • Rwlawoffice

         All they are giving the innocent unborn is the right to not be killed. In every other part of our society we strive to protect the life of the innocent except if that innocent life happens to be in a womb then you support the right of someone else to arbitrarily kill that innocent life.

        • LeftSidePositive

          If someone is threatening my health or my body, I will defend myself. How can something be “innocent” when it is using someone else’s body without permission and causing that person considerable pain, physiological strain, medical risk, and emotional torment? I don’t care if it doesn’t have a mind (which seems to be your absurd criteria for “innocent”), but I don’t owe my body to ANYONE. If something is threatening my bodily safety, I will use whatever force is necessary to get it the hell away from/out of my body.

          By the way, when you say “in a womb” you’re clearly forgetting that womb belongs to A WOMAN who actually does have a mind and actually does have the capacity to suffer and actually does have rights.  You spend so much time projecting human qualities onto a barely-differentiated blob of cells that you’ll completely erase an ACTUAL LIVING PERSON until she’s just some “womb” that happens to be around your precious fucking “innocent unborn.”

        • amycas

           The fact that you think my right to control my body is “arbitrary” speaks volumes. fuck off.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Margaret-Whitestone/100001682409207 Margaret Whitestone

    That might begin to make sense if not for the fact that the overwhelming majority of anti-choice people are pro-war and pro-death penalty.   They don’t care how many innocent men, women and children are bombed to death overseas, nor do they care how many wrongly convicted individuals die in gas chambers or lethal injection chambers.   But they love guilt-tripping women over embryos and fetuses. 

    • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

       It’s simple — they want live babies so they can turn ‘em into dead soldiers.

      • LeftSidePositive

        I’m glad you liked the Carlin vid! It really says it all, doesn’t it!?

        And he was so prescient–this was from 1996, way before the whole explicitness of the anti-contraception and women-being-compared-to-livestock-in-legislative-halls recently…but this shit has been simmering for a loooong time.

        • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

           There’s a reason I call him Saint George.

          I’m a long-time fan of that brilliant, bitter, cranky, hilarious old man.

  • Ken

    Considering the profligate way we waste human lives after birth on religious wars, wars for oil, racial wars and for just plain money, these arguments for the sanctity of fetal life are ludicrous.  Once the baby is born there is no end to its exploitation, abuse and victimization through adulthood to eventual death, and fundies are ready to kill for a blob of cells?

    Actually, I am not pro-abortion by any means, but I do acknowledge the indifferent facts of life that a woman has a right to expel a parasite from her own body.  I don’t like the process, or the philosophical questions this raises, but I’m also not comfortable with the whole idea that life in general requires the death of lesser organisms for sustenance.  Just cause I don’t like something doesn’t change the reality of life, or the fact that a fetus incapable of surviving outside the host (with or without artificial support is a tricky question here) is something short of truly “alive.”  Still, if an insurance company decides that life support for preemies is an experimental procedure and won’t cover it, will the anti-abortionists push for an arrest of the CEO?  And for those without insurance, whose child dies from a lack of prenatal care, do we prosecute them?  Or the doctors and hospitals that will not offer free prenatal care to those in need? After all, I thought this was a moral issue, not financial.  Why is the pressure always on the woman facing the tough decision?  Could it be she is an easy target to shame and pressure, while insurance companies that don’t care are simply invulnerable?

    When I see more drug rehabs, affordable daycare, churches housing the homeless instead of sitting empty 90+%  of the time, and executives ashamed of their multi-million dollar salaries at the expense of firing thousands of employees, I will listen to the anti-abortion rhetoric.  Until then, it’s just a lot of political blather targeting the weak and the vulnerable to keep people distracted from more important issues that would improve life for everyone on the planet.

    • LeftSidePositive

      Sorry, but this line of reasoning really bugs me…there is no amount of social support that can ever truly make up for the physical and emotional drain that is pregnancy and childbirth, let alone childrearing.  Even in the most progressive society imaginable (which I think is a worthy goal for a lot of other reasons), some people will still need abortion, and the social services won’t change what one’s body is being asked to do (and, for many women, being expected to carry a baby and give it up for adoption is an absolutely unbearable torment). No amount of social capital makes forcing someone to be pregnant okay.

      • Onamission5

        I have been following your comments overnight and felt the need this morning to jump in to say…

        Thank you. Thank you, thank you. Thanks for standing up and being so passionate, thanks for being willing to take the flack from the dillholes, thanks for being so eloquent in your defense of female autonomy. I can’t keep a clear head the way you have when I am SO FUCKING PISSED about something, but it is an aspiration of mine to be able to do so. Keep on keeping on!

        • Ndonnan

          You really need to raise you levels of eloquentcy.Foaming at the mouth,veins bulging in the neck,speeeewing explitives, not my idea of eloquent

          • amycas

             Well, if people were attempting to strip you of your right to control your own body I assume you would also be “foaming at the mouth, veins bulging in the neck, speeewing explitives.” Of course, you’re not in any danger of that, so you can treat this as some abstract moral dilemma the likes of which you will never have to actually deal with, but youfeel strongly enough about it that you think you can make this kind of decision for all of us “foaming at the mouth” womenz…you know, cuz we’re all hysterical and all that. I must say again: fuck off.

  • ErickaMJohnson

     LeftSidePositive is right, life began long long ago, not when the egg and sperm fuse.

    And please correct me if I’m wrong but it’s my understanding that most
    Christian doctrine holds that we are all born sinners and must turn to
    Christ to be cleansed of our sinful nature. If this is true, then the unborn aren’t
    innocent.

    • LeftSidePositive

      (To be fair I was quoting George Carlin for that…I wish I’d thought of it myself though!)

      Don’t go looking for consistency in Christianity. Your head might explode. And yeah, I’ve never been clear on how exactly an embryo is so pure and innocent and yet apparently have full moral stature as individuals. “Innocent” apparently means “free of all moral responsibility” which in this case would be more accurately described as “mindless.” If a fetus is “innocent,” then so is the bacteria in my colon.

  • ErickaMJohnson

    Tim, when do you think sentience begins?

    • http://twitter.com/headphase Tim Brown

      Sentience occurs usually 12-18 mo after birth.  I am not anti-abortion and I do not know when terminating a developing human should be an illegal offense.   I am just sick of the smear campaign brought on by the pseudo-left who think that everyone who is either pro-life or doesn’t think that birth control is a right is sexist.

      • ErickaMJohnson

        I’m not sure what pseudo-left means but I can speak to why many might see sexism in those on the pro-life side. (And the phrase is misleading. I’m pro-life and pro-choice. They’re not mutually exclusive terms but for the sake of understanding each other, I’ll use it the way I’m guessing you mean it.) To have a personal pro-life and/or anti-birth control stance is not intrinsically sexist. It’s when someone forces others to follow those standards that they cross a line into sexism. To deny a woman the right to control her fertility is sexist because it implies that her sovereignty over her body isn’t that important.

      • LeftSidePositive

        Birth control is a right, and if you deny human beings the ability to control their fertility, then by virtue of their sex they are at a huge social, economic, and political disadvantage.  Anyone who would put one sex at such a disadvantage, and cause them to endure all the suffering that unwanted pregnancy entails, is indeed advocating very sexist policies.

        • The Other Weirdo

           Technically, birth control isn’t a right, it’s a privilege of having Western secular society.

          • amycas

            Access to birth control is important for me to be able to control my own body. If I can’t control my own body because somebody is with-holding that which would allow me to control it, then my rights are being infringed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nick.sirman Nick Sirman

    I say her mother shouldn’t have been raped. Does that make me a bad person?

    Should people stop rapes, since that would have also stopped her from being born. If I see some woman being raped, and can stop it, should I? I mean, the woman doesn’t want to be raped, but it could prevent her child from being born. 

    Is she advocating rape, since if the rape hadn’t happened she wouldn’t have been born either.

    • Au_catboy

      And if she’s advocating the rape and nine-month emotional and physical torture of her own mother, then I’d say she DOES deserve the death penalty, because she’s clearly a dangerous sociopath…

  • Mark Eagleton

    I really like the line of questioning regarding zygote soul injection logistics. Brilliant. Saving those for later.

  • Parse

    I beg to differ.   At minimum, read the paragraph about the Bugatti, and the three afterwards.  How is that  not killing people for convenience?

  • Ndonnan

    Ive just finished watching a youtube vidio of a 12wo baby being aborted by suction while being filmed on ultrasound.You see it go from a calm heart rate of 140bpm to over 200 and violently thrash around the womb trying to escape while its limbs get suctioned off,they couldnt suck the head up so they crushed it with forceps first.I was glad to find out it was only cells and not really a human,although looking at the peices ,it did have hands and feet and a face

    • amycas

       fuck you. don’t care. the woman has a right to her own body.

      • Ndonnan

        If thats an offer Amy,no thanks,ive got a woman who does care and is responsable with her body

        • Deven_Kale

           You’re making a category error. Just because a person is pro-choice, that does not mean they will ever get an abortion themselves. It just means they understand that sometimes the situation really does make the abortion the better option and allows for those responsible for the child to make that choice.

          I’m pro-choice, but personally I would never suggest an abortion to anybody. At the same time, I would never force someone who has chosen abortion to reconsider their options. It’s a difficult enough choice as it is, even without any outside interference.

        • amycas

           It wasn’t an offer. Let me make my meaning clear. I should have said: FUCK OFF.

          I am responsible with my body ass hole, and I feel sorry for any woman who ends up with a misogynist like you. But, if birth control were to fail and I didn’t think I could go through with a pregnancy and subsequent parenthood, then I would do the responsible thing and NOT bring another unwanted child into this world. Don’t act like you know how I live my life though. It makes you look like a slut-shaming asshole.

    • Drakk

       All animals do that when in pain. Next.

      • Ndonnan

        So do i thats why i avoid pain and dont inflict it. Next

        • amycas

          You would inflict pain on women who don’t want to remain pregnant.

          Fuck off, asshole.

  • M1nt5

    Have you watched the youtube video where a mom repeatedly hits, pinches and kicks his 8 month old baby? I couldn’t stand it for more than 10 seconds, but I searched her case and she alleged the baby was result of a rape and that she hated the little poor thing. Abortion should be a decision, this woman was lucky her mom loved her anyway but it’s not always the case. 

  • mandy

    Your premise about the pro-life vs. pro-choice movement is completely wrong, as there is a community of pro-lifers within the atheist movement. We obviously don’t believe a zygote has a soul. I can only speak for myself, but I believe that an implanted embryo is an unborn human. It’s life has already began. A newborn baby is no less human than an elderly person, but there is far more time between the development of these two people than there is between that of an implanted embryo and a newborn baby. Once the process of making a human life has begun, it’s a human life. Taking a life is taking a life. I’m not saying I don’t have the utmost sympathy and respect for a rape or incest survivor. My heart breaks for them. And I could even be in their shoes some day. But that doesn’t change the fact that an abortion takes a life. If this life is all we get–and I believe that it is–snuffing out someone’s life is one of the cruelest crimes imaginable.

    • Onamission5

      In what way is it cruel to duplicate a process which takes place hundreds of thousands of times a day naturally, on a biological organism which has no sentience? I would argue that it is significantly more cruel to force a woman or girl to gestate her rape fetus against her will and re-live the trauma of rape every day for nine months, then subject her to a painful delivery with risk of invasive sugery or death, and the lengthy recovery period thereafter, to live for the rest of her life with not only the trauma of her rape but also the consequences to her mind and body of enduring an unwanted pregnancy, than to remove something smaller than a walnut from her body and be done with it. 

    • Ndonnan

      Horray Mandy,an atheist who does belive sceince. If you dont belive we have a soul or spirit is fine,thats not the issue here at all,its “does anyone have the right to end this life”.The same arguments were used last century to say negros wernt truly human as we are and so could be treated as chattel,but we now know what a lie that was.Why does a baby in the womb suck its thumb,and its heart rate go through the roof when its stressed,because its a baby

      • amycas

         No not the same arguments ass hole. The “negros” weren’t living inside of people. Seriously. In this scenario, where a woman has to give up her right to her own body, the woman is the slave (as you put it “chattel”), not the embryo. Stop being a willingly ignorant ass, and you might understand that I”m a person, not a vessel for babies.

  • Nordog6561

    “Your reading comprehension is pretty low. Have you passed 3rd grade? You
    can randomly quote-mine me just to insult me, but conveniently ignore
    the last thing I said to you about what you said right before that.”

    Yeah, whatever.

    The fact is that you construct all types of arbitrary considerations to deny the humanity of a completely unified healthy human being simply because you do not, can not, or will not concede that the only true non arbitrary distinction to be made is the one at conception.

    The changes post conception are all changes of growth.  They are not changes in kind.  You don’t have a different kind of thing.

    But hey, you want to call unborn children ticks and make up lies about those who object to the vivisection of the unborn children so that you can convince yourself that killing the most defenseless and innocent among us is just oakey doakey.

    History has a long record of people denying the humanity of others in order to kill them.  The current day and age is no different.

    I’ve already posted about the distinctions between growth and and substantial change and the differences between parts and the whole.

    I can explain them to you but I can’t comprehend them for you.  But then, you really aren’t trying to comprehend them.  You’re to busy comparing people to ticks and telling lies about pro-life people.

    • amycas

       “The fact is that you construct all types of arbitrary considerations to
      deny the humanity of a completely unified healthy human being simply
      because you do not, can not, or will not concede that the only true non
      arbitrary distinction to be made is the one at conception.”

      Fuck off. My rights are not arbitrary. They’re the same rights that you enjoy everyday when people aren’t saying,”hey can I live inside you for almost a year?”

  • Rwlawoffice

     Proves my point- According to Kodie, human life becomes as insignificant as a tick based upon the desires of the mother.  The Holocaust was justified by dehumanizing the Jews . The same thing is happening here, only the numbers are closer to 50 million since 1973

    • Deven_Kale

       The argument is actually more along the lines of :The unborn gains value based upon the desires of the mother. Until the mother decides that her body can be used as life support for it until such time as it’s born, it’s little more than a parasite.

      It’s not the mother taking away it’s right to life, it’s that it only gains that right to life based upon whether or not the mother desires to sacrifice a part of herself to give it that right in the first place.

      • Rwlawoffice

         What a warped way to determine the value of a life. I belief that life has an intrinsic value not based upon the desires of another.  To use your logic, the value of anyone’s life would be based upon the value that someone else places upon it depending upon what they want to sacrifice.  using your line of thinking, there is no logical reason to stop at the unborn because all of us at one time or another cause sacrifice to others.

        • Deven_Kale

           That’s an interesting strawman there. So you’re saying that, once a child is born, then somebody can take away that childs right to life simply because they give them less value than someone else? Or that, rather than take some time and money to help a person, they can just kill them instead? I’m not entirely sure here, but I believe that’s called murder, and it’s definitely not my argument. My argument is, any rights that person has are originally given to them by their mother. Nobody else has the right to give them those rights. Even more so, once given nobody at all has the right to take them away except under very specific (and rare) conditions.

          Once the mother has given a child the right to life, then all other rights logically fall in line. To say otherwise would be violating the rights afforded the woman to control over herself and, sometimes, even her right to life. After all, pregnancy can end in death, and often does.

          Answer me this question, at what point did I lose the right to force somebody else to give me use of their body so that I myself may live? Because that is a right you seem to be giving exclusively to the unborn. Is it something we lose at birth? In which case, you are giving the unborn more rights than their mother. To me, that seems ridiculous.

          • Rwlawoffice

             Not a strawman at all.  Just the logical extension of your determination of how live is valued. The mother does not give the child the right to life, the right to life is intrinsic to it being a life.  If the right to life is ever determined by the desires of another then it that life is devalued.

            Yes it is the exclusive right of the unborn.  Due to biological necessity, the right to life while in the mother’s womb is a right that is exclusive to the unborn.  No matter how many ways people try to use other examples such as blood transfusions or transplants to equate these scenarios it doesn’t equate because of this biological necessity.  And if you think that this is giving more rights to the unborn then to the mother you are correct.  Just like other vulnerable and innocent in our society get more rights than others due to their position, they are entitled to protection that might not otherwise be afforded to others. 

            • Deven_Kale

               It is a strawman because it is not the argument, but an attempt to turn the actual argument into something absurd. The very definition of a strawman.

              The argument is that there is only one person who can give a person any of those rights, and that is the mother. Once they are given they cannot be taken away except under specific circumstances. That’s the argument, you can not add anything to it in order to make it easier for you to tear down without turning it into a strawman.

              You say your family has an orphanage, or the like (I find this doubtful considering how your obvious ignorance of the law compared to your pseudonym proves you’re willing to lie). Do you honestly believe that banning abortion outright will lessen the need for facilities like that? Banning abortion can (and will) only increase suffering along the lines of those whom your (supposed) orphanage suffer. Considering there are those that will not fit in facilities such as those, for many it will be far far worse.

              I’m also interested in which groups you’re speaking of that have more rights than others. My understanding is they’re all fairly equally distributed.

              • Rwlawoffice

                 Taking an argument to its logical conclusion is not a straw man, it is using the argument and showing the consequences without exaggeration. But your argument on its face is without merit. It presupposes that  there is only one life in the equation that needs to be taken into consideration.  The child’s life begins at conception.  It is given by the actions of two people that lead to the creation of a third person. 

                As for the orphanage, think what you will but I don’t lie.  It is located in Lulwanda Uganda and is known as the Lulwanda Children’s Home and the Hesed Clinic. Beautiful children mostly orphaned die to the aids crisis. And I have forgotten more law then you will ever know.

                But to the argument that banning abortion will increase the need to care for orphaned children.  You are probably right.  People will need to step up either before they have sex knowing that their options do not include a simple procedure to have the problem go away or afterwards to see that those children are properly cared for. 

                As for people that more rights then others, I can give you several examples- some people are members of protected classes such as workers over forty or women in the workplace or racial minorities. Others are children- if I withhold medical care from my child, I will be charged with child endangerment  yet I can withhold medical care to others with no consequences.  If I starve my child to death I will be charged with murder but i don’t have to feed everyone.  The protection arises from the relationship and provides protection to some that is not provided to others.

                • Deven_Kale

                   The argument is about who grants the rights to the child. You, who have no claim to the child, and likely will never meet any of them had they been born, think you have the ability to grant them those rights. Who grants you that authority? You know nothing of the circumstances under which that child would live. The only person who truly knows the situation into which that child would be placed is, again, the mother.

                  In the case of putting the child up for adoption, there’s no guarantee that they’ll go directly to a loving family. In fact, they often don’t. Many of them end up bouncing around between foster homes for much of their live, sometimes their entire childhood. Others are luckier and end up in orphanages where at least they have consistency, but it’s still nowhere close to ideal. I would argue that no life is often better than one such as that.

                  So again, there is only one person who should be able to grant the right to life (and all others) to a child, and that is the person directly responsible for it. If she decides not to trade her own rights for the rights of the child, for selfish or altruistic reasons, then she must be free to do so.

                  Your examples of having extra rights are flawed. What you’re citing are not examples of people or groups with extra rights. They are examples of groups whose rights others are trying to take away, and so they have now become enforceable by legal action. In other words, allowing legal action for those whose rights are being infringed. They are not gaining any rights your or I do not already have.

                • Nordog6561

                   “So again, there is only one person who should be able to grant the right
                  to life (and all others) to a child, and that is the person directly
                  responsible for it.”

                  I don’t know where you live or what your nationality is, but here in America we have the quaint idea that human rights are not granted by another person.  Rather, the rights are an integral part of our being, bestowed by a our Creator…

                  “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,
                  that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that
                  among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

                  Now, quite aside from whether or not the founders considered “Creator” to be the God of Abraham, Jacob, and Issac, it was certain that the foundational American creed denies that any man has the authority to bestow or deny the unalienable rights.

                  I’m reminded of C.S. Lewis here:

                  “Aristotle said that some people were only fit to be slaves. I do not contradict him. But I reject slavery because I see no men fit to be masters.”Apparently though, for some atheists, Ivan Karamozov was right, if there is no god everything is permitted.One only need have the will to power and one can bestow and deny rights as one sees fit.

                • Deven_Kale

                   Consider where you are (friendly atheist), and how mangled the US constitution has become over the past 20-30 years before you make that argument.

                  I would argue that, even using the constitution, there can only be two people who are considered to be the “Creator” of a child, and those are the Mother and Father. Therefore it is up to them to “endow” the child with it’s inalienable rights. Prove to me that is not a valid interpretation of that statement.

                  Apparently though, for some atheists, Ivan Karamozov was right, if there is no god everything is permitted.

                  You two sure like strawmen…  I do not believe that everything is (or should be) permitted. I believe in a moral absolute: that anything which increases the well being of the majority is good, and that which increases the suffering of an individual or group is evil. In terms of abortion, the morality of that act is therefore situation dependent and should be determined by the parents, but primarily the mother.

                • Nordog6561

                   You are confused.  One, mangled or not, the U.S. Constitution is still the law of the land.  Two, the quote I provided came not from the Constitution but the Declaration of Independence.  It is the foundational document of our country.  The Constitution, as the foundational document of our government, is secondary to it.

                  That you think that human rights are bestowed by human beings tells me all I need to know about you.  Most pertinent of which is that we will never see eye to eye.

                  “I do not believe that everything is (or should be) permitted.”

                  Sure you do, as long as that which is permitted is seen by you as increasing the well being of the majority.  That worked out well for the those subjugated by Soviets, the Khmer Rouge, et alia.  The Gulag after all was for the greater good, as were the Killing Fields of Cambodia.

                  I mean, after those events, if there’s something that’s still NOT permitted, mark me down as unimpressed.

                • Deven_Kale

                   You ignored a key aspect in your interpretation. That which increases suffering of even an individual is evil. Therfore your examples are equally as evil and immoral to you as they are to me.

                  Try again.

                • Nordog6561

                   Well yes, of course.  But that evil came about because people ascribed to the idea that man had the authority to deny the fundamental rights of others, combined with the idea that they could create a better world according to their lights.

                  Once people decide they can create the best good for the most people and that they can do so by denying the rights of others as they see fit, you get the atrocities I’ve mentioned.

                  Whittaker Chambers’ “Witness” makes for great reading on this point btw.

                • Deven_Kale

                   It’s not a question of denying rights, it’s a question of when they are given. By the time a person is born, they have those rights, no if’s, and’s or but’s. They cannot then be taken away, except in extreme cases (murderers and the terminally ill, etc.).

                  Your atrocities are still immoral by any standard, unless you ignore the suffering of individuals. While there are those people that do, I am not one of them.

                • Nordog

                  “It’s not a question of denying rights, it’s a question of when they are given.”

                  That’s rich.

                  You may as well say, “I’m not denying you your rights, I’m just not giving them to you.”

                  And for the record, they are not my atrocities, they are my examples of atrocities.

                • Deven_Kale

                   Except that it’s a ridiculous strawman argument, in that it only has bearing at one single point in anyone’s life, when the mother discovers she’s pregnant.

                  We’re not arguing semantics, don’t be churlish.

                • amycas

                   The Declaration of Independence is not the foundation of US government. I would expect more from someone who claims to be a lawyer.

                • Ndonnan

                  Good quote, While most people can be “good without God” if there is no accountability, any thing goes, just because most think we should live a certain way,you carnt impose that on anyone else, so the most powerful rule, as hitler and stalin proved, as time will show people have short memories

              • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

                Banning abortion will probably not increase the number of children in orphanages or foster care all that much.  Abortion bans do very little to lower abortion rates.  They really only decrease the rate of safe abortions.  (For poor women anyway.  Rich women will just travel to where abortion is legal.)  Abortion is incredibly common in countries that have severely restricted it or banned it completely, especially if the country is weak on family services, and abortion bans do seem to go hand in hand with having crappy family services.

                Strong social/family service programs, single payer health care, universal access to birth control, comprehensive sex education, and strong parental leave laws decrease abortion rates quite a bit, even if abortion is allowed on demand.  But since none of those measures involve punishing sluts for their sluttiness, they aren’t as popular with the forced-pregnancy crowd.

                • amycas

                  That’s true. It’s why I have to scoff at people who claim to be pro-life and then insist on making abortion illegal. All that does is increase the number of women who die.

          • Ndonnan

            What you and so many people here choose to ignore is that nearly every woman with a concived child was impllisit in its creation,she is responsable.She wasnt walking dowm the street and someone sneezed and she caught a pregnancy,she dropped her pants knowing the risk.

            • Deven_Kale

              Somewhere in this massive thread you will find an earlier post of mine showing that I fully understand that position, and was once anti-choice myself because of it. However, with a fuller understanding of the consequences of forced birth, I believe it has very little merit in the full discussion as to the overall morality of abortion.

              Edit: spelling

            • amycas

               Except, this thread was originally about whether or not a raped woman has a right to abortion. After all, she did not choose it. And seeing your earlier posts, it seems that you don’t think even a raped woman has the right to abortion. So, which is it? Is a woman doomed to pregnancy because she dared to express her sexuality, or is she doomed to pregnancy merely because somebody else forced it on her? You can’t keep claiming that it’s the woman’s responsibility, even when the woman was raped. Until you get your argument straight, fuck off and let the women deal with these decisions.

    • schmavery

      I’ve found that Jewish people tend to take offense at the genocide of their people being appropriated for your own pathetic attempt at a false equivalency. 

      • Nordog6561

        I suspect that pro-life Jews neither mind the comparison nor agree with your estimation of the equivalency.

        What you really mean, or at least what is really true, is that pro-abortion types take offense when the barbarity of their position is mentioned.

        I further suspect pro-life Jews take offense that you would presume that all Jews are of like mind on this issue.

        • schmavery

          I’ve only ever heard non-Jewish people invoke the Holocaust when discussing abortion, so that’s not a generalization, that’s just my personal experience. The Anti-Defamation League regularly speaks out against anyone comparing the Holocaust to legalized abortion. Of course, the ADL doesn’t speak for everyone, though statistically speaking, Jewish people are more likely to be pro-choice. Even so, that doesn’t make it okay for non-Jews to exploit the suffering of an entire race/culture for the sake of making a flimsy argument.
          I only take offense on behalf of my Jewish friends; believe me when I say your opinion of my ‘barbaric position’ means nothing.

          • Nordog6561

             Of course it means nothing to you.  As dose the opinion of the ADL on the matter of abortion.

    • Kodie

      I’m not dehumanizing anything! 

      • Nordog6561

        You are dehumanizing unborn children by calling them ticks and apparently implying that even if they are human beings it’s okay to kill them because evil conservative pro-lifers hate children that actually walk around outside the womb.

        • Kodie

          “Evil” conservative pro-lifers do not demonstrate a great value to life outside the womb, but I’m not implying that that’s what makes it ok to kill them. What makes it ok to kill them is that I am not exaggerating what they are like you do.  For that matter, “kill” and “them” and “dehumanizing” are not even appropriate terms. You’re the one, and rlawoffice are the ones who elevate what you’re doing to saving the lives of unborn fully formed human beings who deserve rights but unable to say so themselves because they don’t have fucking mouths yet, or brains, or hearts, but oh, thow itty-bitty hants and footz! If life is precious, I expect you don’t eat meat either? And you never kill spiders or mice cock-a-roachios. Or you’re elevating a non-being to above that of a tick. God created that fucking tick, you moron. What gives you the right to detickenize it?

          • Nordog6561

             Yeah, of course, if I am wrong about abortion, at least I can take comfort in the overwhelming compassion extended by the pro-choicers such as yourself.

            Why should anyone worry about life with such tender people fighting for autonomy?

            Okay, enough for the sarcasm.

            Now you’re dehumanizing all people by equating them with spiders roaches.  Of course your problem there, as elsewhere, is your patent inability to make distinctions.

            You equate my finding life precious to my equating all life as precious as human life.

            Given that I think dehumanizing people is bad, likewise I think humanizing insects and cattle is bad.

            But I get it.  People, born or not, have no more moral standing in your cosmology than ticks, roaches, and cows.

            Then again, weren’t you the one who said something along the lines that you wish you hadn’t been born.  That says volumes.  You don’t even put much stock in your own life.

            • Deven_Kale

               

              Then again, weren’t you the one who said something along the lines that you wish you hadn’t been born.

              That was me. You should pay more attention or we may have to put you back at the kids table.

              • Nordog6561

                 LOL!

                I stand corrected.

                What Kodie did write was…

                “It’s not that I do or don’t value my life, it just hasn’t always been so
                great that I’d do it over again, and I think people make too much about
                dying with regrets”

                So basically, same difference, so to speak.

                However, you said you wish you hadn’t been born?  Really?

      • Rwlawoffice

        Sure you are.  Calling an unborn child the equivalence of a tick or a parasite is dehumanizing it. It allows you to do what with it what you desire because it is not a human worth protecting. That is how dehumanizing works.

        The military learned this long ago.  Did you know that in WWII it was shown that only about 15% of the soldiers fired their weapons at the enemy. By Vietnam that number  was close to 90%.  The difference was the training they received in dehumanizing the enemy. 

        We have a natural repulsion at killing another person. So in order to do that we have to learn that the victim is not a person.  That is why the unborn are called things like parasites or ticks. That is also why the pro abortion crowd balks at seeing pictures of the abortions or laws that require woman be given ultrasounds or hearing the heart beat prior to the abortion.  Any attempt to humanize the unborn would make the woman pause and think about what they are doing. 

        • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

           The guy who would reduce every woman on the planet to a walking incubator less deserving of bodily autonomy than a corpse (Need a heart transplant?  The matching candidate who just died in the ER didn’t want to be a donor, so tough shit for you.) thinks we’re the ones dehumanizing people.

          The pro-choice crowd balks at unnecessary medical procedures intended to scare or shame women because A.) medical care should be determined by doctors, not legislators pandering to evangelical voters  B.) these measures artificially inflate the cost of abortion, which means they disproportionately harm poor women and C.) they often involve lies of omission and commission, like saying abortion causes breast cancer (it doesn’t) or stressing that abortion can cause death (as can any surgery, but abortion has one of the lowest mortality rates of any surgical procedure) while leaving out the fact that continuing the pregnancy and giving birth is much more likely to cause death or permanent disability than abortion.

          • Rwlawoffice

            That is the best you have?  Calling an unborn child a tick or a parasite is dehumanizing it for the purposes I have pointed out. 

            As for your other arguments regarding the ultrasounds they are equally without merit.  Even the pro choice crows acknowledges that most doctors perform ultrasounds prior to the abortion as a matter of course.  What they balk at is the information that is required to be given to the patient.  They are arguing that this violates the doctor’s right to free speech. This argument failed in the fifth circuit. Over twenty years ago the Supreme Court approved the law requiring patients be given pamphlets and truthful information regarding the procedure including information about the fetus. This is an extension of that requirement and is based upon the same principle.  But let me ask you, why is seeing the fetus that will be killed shaming the woman? Doesn’t she have the right to know all of the truthful information?  

            • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

              No defense for the fact that you think women are less deserving of bodily autonomy than corpses, I see.  Moving on…

              Please show me evidence of the pro-choice movement being opposed to allowing women to view the ultrasound.  Citation is desperately fucking needed.

              And when you do it, make sure you are paying attention to the difference between women being allowed to view the ultrasound, and being forced to look at the ultrasound/forced to listen to a description of the ultrasound.  I know it’s a difference inconvenient to your agenda, but it’s still important.

              The point is that whether or not an ultrasound is necessary should be determined by DOCTORS, not pandering legislators.  If a doctor says its necessary, then an ultrasound should be performed.  If it’s not necessary, then a woman should not be forced to undergo or pay for an unnecessary procedure.  And women should definitely not be forced to undergo transvaginal ultrasounds when an abdominal ultrasound would do, or do you deny that the pro-life movement has attempted to pass such requirements?

              It’s a fucking lie to say that these bills are meant to inform women.  Why are there no bills requiring women to watch a video of a rhinoplasty before being allowed to decide to get a nose job?  Why aren’t men required to have their prostates palpated or watch a video of a needle aspiration treatment for priapism before getting Viagra?  Why is it these laws are aimed only at abortion? And why are doctors being required to give false and misleading information? How does lying about a procedure make women more informed about it?

              The Supreme Court has approved giving women false information, and I hope to see those decisions overturned in my lifetime.  Abortion does not cause breast cancer, but the law in some states requires doctors to say it does.  Abortion is safer than pregnancy, but the mandatory script does not allow doctors to say that.  The Supreme Court has made ruled incorrectly in the past.  This is another example of the SC getting it wrong.

              • Rwlawoffice

                 no response needed because I never said it nor implied it.  Show me where i said or implied that a woman has less rights to her body than a corpse and I will respond.

                No cite needed because I never said anything about the forcing or allowing the woman to review the ultrasound.  What i said, which was ignored by you was that the argument is that it violates the free speech rights of the doctor.  The argument is that he is being forced to say something he doesn’t want to say.  the Texas law specifically doesn’t require the woman to view the ultrasound.

                If it was medically necessary for med to have their prostates examined prior to getting Viagra it could be put into legislation.  I think some women legislators even tried that.

                I never said anything about abortions causing breast cancer.  I said truthful information, not only about the risks to the mother but the condition of the fetus.  Why shouldn’t she be told that?

                • Ndonnan

                  This blog inspired me to check out abortion vids on utube.There is one done using an ultrasound where you can see the baby start thrashing around in the womb and the heart beat goes from 140 to over 200 when the suction device is incerted.The man introducing the vid said the doctor who preformed the op and had done 10000 before quit his job after being shown the video.By the way your 50mil abortions since the 70s i assume is only the states,because its 44mil a year world wide

                • amycas

                   Again, whatever happens to the fetus, the woman has a right to her own body.

                • amycas

                   “Show me where i said or implied that a woman has less rights to her body than a corpse and I will respond.”

                  Corpses that were not on the donor list before death cannot be used as organ donors. That is, the bodily autonomy of a dead person is respected. Earlier in this same thread, you told me that pregnant women lose some of their bodily autonomy because they have a life dependent upon their body. Ipso facto, women have less bodily autonomy than corpses.

                  Again: fuck off.

                • Rwlawoffice

                  That is a stretch but ok, I will respond. The issue is not that pro life proponents are calling for ladies to have less bodily autonomy than a corpse, we are calling for an unborn child to be given the same rights as all other living humans, namely the right to life and not to be killed by the decision of another. Just like the wishes of a person regarding his organs are honored, the fetus should not have his body torn apart without his consent to benefit another.

                • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

                  Let’s pretend is a fetus is a person with a right to life.  It still doesn’t have a right to live in my body without my permission.  I have every right to evict it from my body, using deadly force if necessary, just as I have a right to use deadly force against a person breaking into my house, just as I have a right to back out of a living organ donation right up to the moment before I’m supposed to be sedated for the transplant surgery.

                  See? Fetuses do have the same rights as everyone else. Nobody else has the right to use another person’s body to stay alive against that person’s will.

                  I live under the threat of kidney disease.  I like to joke that my brother is my back-up, but the truth is that if he doesn’t want to be a donor, he doesn’t have to be.  My right to life does not include the right to take what I need to survive from his body.  And I wouldn’t want the law to be any other way.  I’d rather die than live because another person’s most intrinsic human rights have been taken away.

                  The fact that a fetus has as much sentience as a tick (which is a statement of medical fact, and is no more “dehumanizing” than to point out that my colorblind friend can’t tell red from green) may inform my personal feeling that there isn’t anything even remotely immoral about abortion, but it’s wholly immaterial to whether or not abortion should be legal.  Even if you could convince me that a cluster of cells is the same thing as a human person, I would still be staunchly pro-choice.  I recognize the humanity of women.  You are bent on dehumanizing them into mere wombs.

                • Nordog6561

                   Ah yes, the dehumanizing of the weak combined with the will to power dressed as absolute autonomy.  Such a great combination for so much good stuff to happen.

                • Rwlawoffice

                  Your right to bodily autonomy is not complete or without limits, particularly when it involves the unique relationship between a mother and a child.  A mother has the affirmative moral and legal duty to protect her child. That relationship is different than that between your brother.

                  Even if by accident, the mother was responsible for that life to be created and as such has the moral and legal duty to provide what it needs to survive.  The fact that you think this duty arises upon birth doesn’t change the reality of the situation, nor does it change the moral principle involved.

                  Rather than dehumanizing women, it recognizes them for what they have always been and for  the moral obligations and duties that they have always had and that is to protect their children.   

                  Let me give you a thought experiment that you may have heard of- What if a woman was pregnant and had horrible nausea and the only drug that would help her was  thalidomide knowing that it would cause birth defects in her child.  With that knowledge she takes the drugs saying that it is her body and she has the right to do with it what she wants.  She takes the drugs and her child is born without arms.  Is she acting immoral?

                  What about the art student from Harvard, Aliza Shvart who wanted to include an aborted fetus in her art project so she specifically got pregnant and aborted the baby for that purpose.  Was she acting immoral?  Did she have the right to do that?

                • Kodie

                   

                  the moral obligations and duties that they have always had and that is to protect their children.

                  They are not children yet. You and a couple other boneheads keep using the word “dehumanizing,” they have to be people first. Clearly you think that they are people, even though they aren’t. YET. Abortions done before they have become a person are not dehumanizing anyone. “Dehumanizing” is such a dramatic term for someone who dehumanizes women. None of you seem to grasp the obvious and only go for the sentimental.

                  1). It’s not best practices, but plenty of babies are born addicted to something. People who do want a child presumably want it to remain on a developmental path to a healthy birth eventually, but it’s not always the case. As in the case of thalidomide, once it was discovered to be the cause of birth defects it was discontinued. But women dye their hair, have a bottle of beer now and then, and probably don’t get enough exercise. Are you going to force them to be better mothers? You also don’t care how good a mother is once her child is born. Good enough is good enough – you pro-lifers always want to take those kids and put them into “good” Christian homes as if a person who has gone “gotten herself” knocked up, if she doesn’t want a baby, will not emotionally suffer for that choice. You dramatize the guilt over an abortion of a thing that’s not even a person, but you think if a woman doesn’t want a kid, giving it away once it is a person would not even be painful. That makes you an oblivious sanctimonious pile of crap in my book. Fuck your “adoptions would be better”. You take away 99% of choice. People who can’t afford kids should just give them away like they are selling their old toaster at a garage sale. As if someone who would otherwise get an abortion must be so cold-hearted that, hey, what’s the difference.

                  So, yeah, if she wanted to take drugs, nobody’s going to stop her, and whatever comes out will be what she made up her mind. In the difference between a wanted child and an unwanted potential one, if she wanted it to develop arms and legs, she would be more prone to endure lots of other bullshit as practice for parenting. If she didn’t want to take care of a kid, then she should get an abortion before it becomes one.

                  2). Yes, of course.

                • Nordog6561

                   “They are not children yet. You and a couple other boneheads keep using the word “dehumanizing,” they have to be people first.”

                  That’s hilarious.  Apparently we should add “irony” to the things you cannot grasp.  You seem to think that denying the humanity of something is proof that you are not dehumanizing something.  That’s a regular laugh riot.

                  Of course calling people things like “boneheads” isn’t dehumanizing either, so of course a reasonable person disagreeing with you would initially and immediately be drawn to your argument by the humanizing and compassionate manner in which you call people boneheads, ticks, and roaches.

                • Kodie

                  You’re not just a bonehead, you’re a troll, and you’ve humanized clumps of cells because they have little tiny hands just like a mouse and they thrash in pain just like a fish out of water, and dehumanized everyone who disagrees with you, including me, by being a condescending douchewad to them. I am not a vessel for incubating human life, and I don’t put balloons and streamers on the party of life like a lot of people, but you are attempting to dehumanize me just for not being the kind of person you think I’m supposed to be. You don’t have a valid argument so you insult people, like a troll. I’m done with you.

                • Nordog6561

                   Kodie, you are suffering from what is know as projection.  Or, put another way, you have accused me of doing that which I have not, but that you have done exceedingly frequently.

                  Again, your innate compassion and loving manner is sure to win many minds to your position that people develop from that which is the moral equivalent of a tick.

                  To observe that you are pathetic is not to dehumanize you.  In fact pathos is very humane concept.

                  In any event let us hope that you never have to kill any ticks.  I would hate to see you kill a baby by mistake.

                • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com/ wmdkitty

                   Not immoral. Not illegal. And yeah, they have EVERY RIGHT to do just that.

                • Deven_Kale

                  Rather than dehumanizing women, it recognizes them for what they have always been

                  In that one statement, you have inadvertently exposed your entire argument for what it really is. The implicit assumption that women are nothing more than baby carriers and abortion is them shirking their only real responsibility.

                • Nordog6561

                  “In that one statement, you have inadvertently exposed your entire argument for what it really is. The implicit assumption that women are nothing more than baby carriers and abortion is them shirking their only real responsibility.”

                  Man, talk about obtuse reductionism with a double dose of non-sequitur.

                  A woman isn’t “nothing more” than anything, let alone a “baby carrier” just because she has natural moral obligation to protect her children.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Nordog’s response is spot on.

                • amycas

                  A mother would never be forced to donate an organ/blood/plasma to aher child though. Why should she be forced to donate her entire body and sufferer further affectsfrom the pregnancy to a fetus? You are giving fetuses more rights

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Because at the time the fetus is in the mother’s womb, its survival is dependent entirely upon her alone for survival.  Afterwards, others can provide what the baby needs to survive.  But, the moral argument is the same- a mother has the moral and affirmative duty to protect and ensure their child’s survival, even if that child was conceived by accident.  If you think that this gives the fetus more rights than the mother then you do so only because you do not believe that they both have the right to life. I view it as giving them the same rights- the right to be alive.

                • Kodie

                  The problem is you keep insisting it is a child, when it is not. So your deluded opinion on a woman’s responsibility for not-a-child has no bearing.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Sorry Kodie, the fact that you don’t think it is a child, doesn’t change the fact that it is.  it is not a tumor, it is not a tick, it is not a flea.  It is a child.  Here is a picture of one just in case you are confused;

                  Since your position is that it is not a child until it is born  I thought I would give you a baby at 20 weeks after conception;

                  http://www.medicinenet.com/fetal_development_pictures_slideshow/article.html

                  The only difference between this ans a fetus a few weeks earlier is time.

                  If you do not think this is a child, there is no hope for you.

                • Kodie

                   I don’t think that’s a child. I guess that gives you license to judge me as unfit to be a human. The only thing between this and getting on with your life is an abortion, that’s what I see. 20 weeks is kind of late for an abortion, after all, and you guys are all about instigating delay until it can be more disputable, but if you think the 8 week one is a baby, there is no hope for you. When people want to be pregnant, they begin to use their strong emotions and projections to care for it and plan for it, as it will become a baby, like you said, in time.

                • Rwlawoffice

                   All I can say is sad, truly sad.  

                • Kodie

                  Your emotions are your responsibility to control. 

                • Nordog6561

                  Well, at least he’s not hysterical.

                • Nordog6561

                  Kodie, you’re the one judging others as non-human.  It’s become such an inegral part of your thinking you automatically assume that someone you disagrees with you sees you unfit to be human.

                  For the record:

                  Ghouls can be human beings.
                  Repugnant individuals can be human beings.
                  Worshipers of the self and “autonomy” can be human beings.
                  Willful killers of babies can be human beings.

                  However:

                  Ticks cannot be human beings.
                  Salt shakers cannot be human.
                  Amputated or otherwise removed human parts cannot be human.

                  Calling someone one of the things in the former group is not dehumanizing.  It might be wrong, rude, or scandalous, but it is not dehumanizing.  All of the things in the fomrer group are indeed part of the human experience.

                  The things in the latter group however do become dehumanizing elements when applied, as you have applied them, to human beings.

                  From the moment of conception until a death at the age of 96, a human being has been a unique individual human being for that entire time.  Changing only in ways of development and maturation.

                  The single, substantive change event happens at conception.

                  Willfully denying this fact in order to have the right to throw babies into buckets of water to drown is incredibly wicked (but being incredibly wicked is too a part of the human experience, just not a good one).

                • Deven_Kale

                   

                  [I am] calling for an unborn child to be given the same rights as all other living humans.

                  Be honest. Earlier you admitted that you are asking to give them more rights than everyone else. Namely the right to forcibly use another’s body against their will.

                • Nordog6561

                  It’s a funny thing, this
                  non-human being without a heart, brain, and liver (to borrow from someone’s
                  phrasing here, without sentience, without consciousness, and presumably without
                  a will, that still has the physically ontological capacity to FORCIBLY USE something.

                  You confuse physical
                  dependence with forcible usage.

                  I mean, what you’re saying is like saying the three month old baby “forcibly uses your spare bedroom” as if the poor child was some type of adult intruder.

                   

                • Nordog6561

                  It’s a funny thing, this non-human being without a heart, brain, and liver (to borrow from someone’s phrasing here, without sentience, without consciousness, and presumably without a will, that still has the physically ontological capacity to FORCIBLY USE something.

                  You confuse physical dependence with forcible usage.

                  I mean, what you’re saying is like saying the three month old baby “forcibly uses your spare bedroom” as if the poor child was some type of adult intruder.

                • amycas

                   In this case, its not the fetus using force, it would be anti-choicers doing the forcing.

                • amycas

                   You keep getting your analogies backwards. In this scenario: mother= corpse not on donor list

                  fetus=person who needs organ from corpse not on donor list

                  If we don’t take organs from corpses to save someone who will otherwise die, and you say that fetuses should be allowed to use a woman’s body against her will, then you are giving fetuses more rights than even a full-grown person (the one who needs the organs) has and you’re placing women’s rights to bodily autonomy below that of a corpse. I don’t know how else to make this analogy any more clear. Do you want me to draw a diagram and post it here??

                • Rwlawoffice

                   No I understand the analogy just fine. I just give the fetus equal rights to the mother- the right to live. Read the analogy from that perspective and you will see what I am saying.  The only reason you don’t is the presupposition that the woman has more rights to her body than the fetus.  I don’t.

                • http://twitter.com/enuma enuma

                  So you don’t have any proof that the pro-choice movement is opposed to women being given information about medical procedures.  I thought as much.  Can you, just once, engage in this debate without lying?

                  (Hint: The pro-choice movement is opposed to women being given FALSE information.  We’re all for women being given accurate information.)

                • Rwlawoffice

                   Can you just once stick to the topic at hand.  Where did i say that the pro choice movement did not want woman to be given information about medical procedures?  What I did say was that the argument they used in regard to the ultrasound laws was free speech rights of the doctors. They used this argument even though it was transparent to the real reason.

                  As far as the pro choice movement wanting to only give out true information I would disagree with that if they tell the woman that what they are killing is not a human, it is just a clump of cells or a parasite.  

            • amycas

              I had a miscarriage and was never given an ultrasound because I didn’t want one. It was hard enough as it was. You don’t know what you’re talking about, so fuck off.

              • Rwlawoffice

                 What your doctor did in your individual case is not at all indicative of the standard of medical care for other doctors or what is normally done.

                So, have a great day.

                • amycas

                  It is indicative of the standard of medical care. They asked me if I wanted an ultrasound. In my case, the ultrasound was not medically necessary, it was standard medical care to ask my permission. In fact, even if a procedure is medically necessary doctors are supposed to ask your permission before performing the procedure. If this is not what is normally odne, then a lot of doctors should get their medical license revoked.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Leithiser/593361421 Chris Leithiser

    “No.”

    Any other questions?

  • http://profiles.google.com/statueofmike Michael S

    I’m sorry for that woman. It’s too bad she’s so personally invested. Whether or not she feels personally offended, she doesn’t get to emotionally hold herself hostage over the issue.

    Also, thank you Ericka for writing the article.

  • Patterrssonn

    Feel free to ignore Nordog he’s one of those MRA nutjobs who believe that sperm has rights.

  • Patterrssonn

    I think your problem is your inability to see women as persons legal or otherwise.

  • http://www.facebook.com/keri.mascagni Keri Mascagni

    To run as a society, rules are needed.  Though how rules are chosen and why always seems to come down to what the majority, (usually) believes, sometimes just some jerk in the right position.  Thats why there are so many useless rules still on the books. 

    But then there are the issues of life, what is it, when it begins etc.  This will always piss people off, because no one will ever agree. 
    Evolution, creation…life, death…before and after…

    All the mysteries of what we call life.

    So what if the one who was meant to answer all these questions was aborted??

    Well then we were not meant to know.

    That is, if our destiny is predetermined, or do each of our actions decide our fate??

    What if the next serial killer was aborted, have lives been spared??

    I do not think anyone has the right to tell someone what they can and can not do with thier bodies, maybe if those people who abused drugs and alcohol had abortions then their children would not be here to suffer the pain and endless suffering they have to go through.

    I believe life begins at conception, BUT I would never tell someone they were wrong if they felt life begins at birth.  We all have the right to our opinions, we all have the right to choose to believe in a religion or not.

    But to me what this story says is…lets try and take aways rights that women have worked so hard to get.

  • Derrik Pates

    The arguments I’ve seen in the comments about “well, if a woman has sex, pregnancy is a likely outcome, so clearly she has no right to complain” makes about as much sense as saying we should stop research into combating STDs, because anyone who has sex is a dirty filthy whore who deserves whatever STDs they get. It’s a ridiculous argument. If a woman doesn’t want to be pregnant, then no one should be able to force her into being pregnant. Whether it’s because she had sex and the condom broke, or she was taking an antibiotic at the same time as the pill, or she was raped, or whatever the reason.

    As for the woman in the original story, I can’t imagine what it must have been like to find out that she was the product of rape, and that her mother said that she would’ve had an abortion if she could. But things were what they were. As others point out, there are so many potential people that could be, or that would have been if circumstances had been slightly shifted. That doesn’t mean they all could be or should be.

    • amycas

       It’s even worse, because those same people who claim we should be forced to be pregnant because we CHOSE to have sex, are also saying that even women who didn’t choose to have sex (they were raped) should be forced to remain pregnant.

  • Nordog6561

    I’ve taken the liberty to re-post the following because it became lost in the skinny squeeze formatting…

    Nordog:

    Well yes, of course.  But that evil came about because
    people ascribed to the idea that man had the authority to deny the fundamental
    rights of others, combined with the idea that they could create a better world
    according to their lights.

     

    Once people decide they can create the best good for the
    most people and that they can do so by denying the rights of others as they see
    fit, you get the atrocities I’ve mentioned.

    Whittaker Chambers’ “Witness” makes for great
    reading on this point btw.

     

     

    Deven_Kale:

    It’s not a question of denying rights, it’s a question of
    when they are given. By the time a person is born, they have those rights, no
    if’s, and’s or but’s. They cannot then be taken away, except in extreme cases
    (murderers and the terminally ill, etc.).

     

    Your atrocities are still immoral by any standard, unless
    you ignore the suffering of individuals. While there are those people that do,
    I am not one of them.

     

     

    Nordog

    “It’s not a question of denying rights, it’s a question
    of when they are given.”

     

    That’s rich.

     

    You may as well say, “I’m not denying you your rights,
    I’m just not giving them to you.”

    And for the record, they are not my atrocities, they are my
    examples of atrocities.

     

     

    Deven_Kale

    Except that it’s a ridiculous strawman argument, in that it
    only has bearing at one single point in anyone’s life, when the mother
    discovers she’s pregnant.

     

    We’re not arguing semantics, don’t be churlish.

  • Nordog6561

    amycas,

    You wrote, ” The Declaration of Independence is not the foundation of US government.
    I would expect more from someone who claims to be a lawyer.”

    Please, take a breath and take a moment to actually read the following:

    I have never claimed to be a lawyer.

    I am not a lawyer.

    I did not say that the Declaration of Independence is the “foundation” of the U.S. government.  I did not even say that it was the foundational document of the U.S. government.

    Rather, I said the Declaration of Independence is the foundational document of our country.  Further I said that the U.S. Constitution was still the law of the land and that it was the foundational document of our government.

    Now perhaps you are one of those liberals who have so given themselves over to statism that you can no longer make any distinction between a country and and the structures of its government.

    In any event, I do hope this is not an example of the level of intellectual discernment to which you are limited.

    Yes, let us hope.
     

    • amycas

       I only assumed Rw is alawyer because of the screen name. And if I misread what Rw said then I retract my statement. It gets skinny up there and it’s very difficult to read much of it. (that’s why I typically stop responding when it gets less than 2 characters/line)

  • Nordog6561

    Again, re-posting to reclaim for the skinny formatting…

    ******

     

    Nordog6561:

     

    “What is truly depraved here is your insistence that a
    woman should, by virtue of having a uterus, be forced to remain pregnant even
    if it would kill her.”

     

    No, your depravity, in part, comes from the hysterical non
    sequitur and erroneous conclusions about me like the one I’ve quoted here.

     

    Again, I said, “…in part.”

     

     

    wmdkitty:

     

    Mmm, yeah, “hysterical”.

     

    Sexist asshat.

     

     

    Nordog6561:

     

    LOL.

    ******

    It bears noting that this is a case in which certain women are becoming so emotionally overwrought in making statments about their wombs.  

    It’s funny because if there ever was a non-sexist and contextually appropriate use of the word “hysterical” this would be it.

    • amycas

      Wouldn’t you get emotional if someone were fighting to take away your rights?? This is so insulting. It reminds of something:

      A white guy at work made a racist comment about one of his tables (I won’t repeat it here, it was very bad though). A black server told him where he should put his comment and the white guy got indignant at the fact that a black man would be upset by a racist comment. Then he pointed to the black server’s anger as proof that what he said was true. Seriously, he made a disparaging comment about an entire race and then was surprised (and used as evidence against that race) when somebody got mad about it.

      ^^This is what I think of when people (usually men) make statements like this:
      “It bears noting that this is a case in which certain women are becoming
      so emotionally overwrought in making statments about their wombs.”

      after arguing for almost a week against women’s rights. We get emotional because we know what happens to women when abortion is illegal. We know what happens to families when abortion is illegal. We know what happens to children when abortion is illegal. And we know the chilling affects illegalizing abortion has on other issues with women’s rights. Pardon me if I get emotional over somebody trying to enslave me to my bodily functions.

      Wouldn’t you be angry and emotional if somebody was arguing to take away your rights? Even if you don’t see it this way, we do. The least you could do is say,”I understand why you’re angry, but this is why I disagree.” Instead you’ve chosen to ignore the many possible reasons why your arguments might piss us off (many of these reasons have already been spelled out) and use our anger as an example of “a non-sexist and contextually appropriate use of the word ‘hysterical’” Yeah, pretty much the same thing as a racist using a black man’s anger at racism as proof that the “angry black man” stereotype is true. You don’t have to agree with us, but you should at least have the decency and empathy to understand why we might be angry, and not try to use that anger against us.

  • Nordog6561

    Of course the all time greatest example of hysteria would be this gem from LeftSidePositive:

    “FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU UP YOUR MOTHERFUCKING ASS!!!”

    Yeah, that’s what we call “unhinged.”  I really don’t want someone like that making life and death decisions.  Oh well.

    • amycas

      Read my above comment, also this: she is angry because there are people arguing that she should lose her rights. How can you spend an entire thread arguing against her rights and then use her anger as a reason to not allow her these rights? Its the same as if you spent a week telling us that women shouldn’t be allowed to vote, and then pointing at our anger at your saying this as reason why we shouldn’t be allowed to vote. It’s wonderfully circular, I’ll give you that at least. Again, even if you don’t agree that you are arguing against our rights, you should still be able to understand why we would get angry if that’s what we perceived it to be. Don’t use a person’s anger at their rights being violated, as reason to restrict their rights.

  • Deven_Kale

    Rwlawoffice:

    What if a woman was pregnant and had horrible nausea and the only drug that would help her was  thalidomide. [...] She takes the drugs and her child is born without arms.  Is she acting immoral?

    Obviously yes. Since the child was actually born and will now suffer for the rest of their  life because of her thoughtless and selfish acts. Considering the obvious severity of the nausea (which can have life-threatening consequences), the most moral action would have been to keep the nausea (frequent heavy vomiting can cause spontaneous abortion, btw). The second best option would have been to abort the child. The actions she took were no less than criminal, but only due to the fact that the child will now have to live with those preventable birth defects. I would recommend prosecution.

    What about the art student from Harvard, Aliza Shvart who wanted to
    include an aborted fetus in her art project so she specifically got
    pregnant and aborted the baby for that purpose.  Was she acting
    immoral?  Did she have the right to do that?

    Without the full details, it’s hard to say. However, assuming a fetal age of less than 6 weeks (8th week of pregnancy) and it’s probable lack of consciousness, then yes. I would say it’s perfectly within her rights. At that point it’s hardly any more terrible than using proper birth control would have been, except for the strain put on her body.

    • Rwlawoffice

      Here is a picture of the subject of that art project assuming it was done at 7-8 weeks.

       http://www.sciencephoto.com/media/313709/enlarge

      • Deven_Kale

         So it looks like a baby. You’re trying to make an appeal to emotion when the fact is you have no real argument in the first place. You’re trying to use a picture rather than coming up with actual evidence to prove that there is reason to think, at this stage, that child has any consciousness to speak of. And without that evidence, yes it is just a collection of cells. One that happens to look like a human, yes, but just cells nonetheless.

        Again, at this stage, from the evidence that I have seen thus far, it is no more terrible than had she used proper birth control in the first place. Until you can submit evidence that this child even had the capacity to suffer, hell I’ll even say capacity to experience anything, then there is nothing at all wrong with what was done here.

        • Nordog6561

          ” So it looks like a baby. You’re trying to make an appeal to emotion when the fact is you have no real argument in the first place.”

          Deven, yet another one of your problems is that you define a person as having consciousness (which from an atheist’s point of view seem odd given the immaterial nature of consciousness).

          By your definition people cease to be people when they are asleep, knocked unconscious, or otherwise in a comma.  In that world view it would be no crime to kill sleeping people.  Oh, excuse me, I mispoke.  In that worldview those “things” sleeping would no longer be people because whatever they may be they are sleeping.

          And you are patently wrong that there is “no real argument in the first place” concerning conception marking the creation of a human being.

          There are many arguments for that.  Many of which have been offered in these comments.  Yet, you are either unwilling or incapable of seeing them.

          The fact is that all the arguments for not being human offered by pro-aborts are always ad hoc arguments ordered to ignoring the latest reason given that abortion kills human beings.

          But in a way you are correct.  Photos of unborn babies are used to appeal to emotion.  The reason one does this is simple.  When logic, philosophy, and science cannot sway the determined killer of human babies, one hopes in charity that the pro-abort has not so lost his grasp of human love that he would finally see what is there to see plainly.

          • Deven_Kale

            By your definition people cease to be people when they are asleep,
            knocked unconscious, or otherwise in a comma [sic].  In that world view it
            would be no crime to kill sleeping people.  Oh, excuse me, I mispoke. 
            In that worldview those “things” sleeping would no longer be people
            because whatever they may be they are sleeping.

            That’s false for many reasons. One, consciousness is not just the state of being awake. Consciousness is a scale, it has levels of awareness from full alertness to a complete nonresponsive coma. Most of this can be measured as levels of brain activity. Two, sleeping does not remove a person from the consciousness scale, it simply drops them down into a lower level of it. Three, there are cases where people are so far down on this scale, for such a long period of time, that it becomes a question as to whether or not they should even be considered “alive” at all. Terry Schiavo is the most well known case of this here in the US.

            There are many arguments for [conception marking the creation of a human being].  Many of which have been offered in
            these comments.  Yet, you are either unwilling or incapable of seeing
            them.

            There are also many arguments stating that there is no reason to consider a zygote (“conception”) a human being, some of which have been offered in these comments. Since that option is so highly contested (even scientifically) I decided to not even consider any of those arguments (either for or against) at all, and went with the next most likely identifier, consciousness. Consciousness, as I just mentioned, can be measured as levels of brain activity.

            At the embyronic stage (before 9 weeks of pregnancy), the only functioning part of the brain is the brain stem. This is why they can react to stimuli. However, since the other areas of the brain are only partially developed and  almost definitely non-functioning, there is no reason to believe there is any consciousness to speak of. The embryonic stage is also the point at which the vast majority of abortions are performed.

            Full brain function, anywhere close to the level of a human child, is achieved around the beginning of the third Trimester. Coincidentally, it’s at that same point that most states outlaw abortion altogether, with rare exception.

  • Deven_Kale

    Nordog6561:

    It’s a funny thing, this non-human being without a heart, brain, and liver (to borrow from someone’s phrasing here, without sentience, without consciousness, and presumably without a will, that still has the physically ontological capacity to FORCIBLY USE something.

    I’m not going to argue semantics with you. By “forcibly use” I mean “to utilize through the implementation of force*, either physical or otherwise, including legal.” This should have been obvious.

    *force: noun /fȯrs/
    3: violence, compulsion, or constraint exerted upon or against a person or thing.

    edit: formatting

    • Nordog6561

      Okay, let me rephrase…

      It’s a funny thing, this non-human being without a heart, brain, and liver (to borrow from someone’s phrasing here, without sentience, without consciousness, and presumably without a will, that still has the physically ontological capacity to utilize through the implementation of force, either physical or otherwise, including legal, upon somthing.It’s as if you just whip out the word semantic when you are presented with a distintction you either do not understand or that you find, ah, inconvenient.  I suspect the former inasmuch as my point had nothing to do with any finer formal definition of “force”  and everything to do with your assertion that something not afforded more dignity than a clump of cells is in some way an agent of some action.

      • Deven_Kale

        You seem to be suffering from some sort of projection here. It’s a very simple statement that you seem willfully unable to comprehend.

        Rwlawoffice has presented an argument where a “non-human being without a heart, brain, and liver” has the right to utilize the body of a woman without her consent. The application of force must then be used against the woman in order that your “non-human being” may live. Whether or not this “non-human being” is the one applying it is irrelevant.

        As I said, I’m not going to argue semantics with you, regardless of your understanding of the word. Whether or not you can understand that an application of force can be enacted on behalf of another being is irrelevant as well. Just in case though, consider the example of the Bald Eagle. If I were to shoot one* and be seen by the proper authority while doing so, I could be put in prison. The only beings directly involved are me and the Eagle, but the being which applied the force of law onto me was (probably) the state. Legal force applied by one on behalf of another.

        *If it makes you feel better, we’ll say the imaginary Eagle lived and I just clipped it’s wing. It was back to normal within days.

        • Nordog6561

          Nice shift of focus subject there.  You realize that “subject, object, verb” is not mere semantics don’t you?

          As you said, you are not going argue semantics with me.  That’s because these distinctions are not those of semantics.

          What you really mean is that you are going to shift the agent of you statement from one subject to another.

          In this case, you gone from…

          “Be honest. Earlier you admitted that you are asking to give them more rights than everyone else. Namely the right to forcibly use another’s body against their will.”

          …in which the human unborn baby is the agent of the action, to some other agent, presumbably police.

          Your biggest problem here, if we are to take you at your word, is that you think fundamental distinctions are semantics.

          By your reasoning and in your ananolgy of the eagle, which at first read seems an appropriate analogy, the eagle would be the use “using force”.

          But of course that’s silly.

          When you accuse someone of using force then that accusation falls when it is learned that someone else entirely is really the agent of that force.

          That’s not semantics.  That an inability to recognize a fundamental distinction born of reality.

          • Deven_Kale

            In this case, you gone from…

            “Be honest. Earlier you admitted that you are asking to give them
            more rights than everyone else. Namely the right to forcibly use
            another’s body against their will.”

            …in which the human unborn baby is the agent of the action to…

            .. some other agen altogethert, presumbably police.

            It is possible that my understanding of sentence structure is less than perfect, I will admit to that. But the flaw in your response is that, possibly flawed grammar aside, I never even once claimed that the child would be the one applying the force, that is simply your interpretation. I was simply stating that Rw is wanting to give the unborn the right to use the body of a woman against her will, through force if necessary. Again, who applies the force is irrelevant.

            When you accuse someone of using force, then that accusation falls when
            it is learned that someone else entirely is really the agent of that
            force.

            Again, I never said it was the child applying the force, that was simply your interpretation. If that was a grammatical mistake on my part, fine, but never my intention.

            In any event, the real inabilty to grasp fundamental distinctions is the abject denial that we are talking about a human being.

            Actually that’s what the real argument, at it’s core, is about. Whether or not it should be considered human and, if so, what that means. This was not part of any of the debates I was making though, and therefore tangent to anything I’ve been saying.

            We are talking about people who steadfastly refuses to support
            legislation that would protect living breathing human babies outside the
            womb after a botched abortion simply because some woman’s fantasy of
            autonomy dictates that she can kill her baby. So the baby is thrown
            into a bucket of water to drown.

            Ah yes, the baby in the bucket picture being thrown around the internet as a “botched abortion.” In fact it is not a botched abortion. In fact, that’s a picture of one of the possible outcomes of a person in China having a child in Hospital when they already have a registered child. I agree, it should not happen.

            You want to agrue about blastocysts and zygotes and spontaneous
            miscarraiges? Fine. They are admittedly the hard cases for the
            pro-lifer. Of course, that’s why pro-aborts want to focus on them.

            Actually I don’t focus on them, partly because those are likely never the subject of induced abortions, but also because the developmental stage means nothing to me. What does matter to me is not within the scope of this discussion, right now you’re in a discussion about rights and whether or not anybody should have them.

            The fact of the matter is that pro-abortion types are ghouls. They
            worship at the altar of their own navel. They must so totally deny the
            humanity of that which they seek to destroy so that they can continue
            the wholesale destruction.

            The reason I’m for abortion has nothing to do with autonomy and everything to do with morality. There are obvious cases where abortion would definitely have been the right choice but it was not done. No, I am not talking about uncontrollable birth defects such as Downs Syndrome or it’s like. I’m talking about severe cases of physical, sexual, or emotional abuse where the child eventually suicides or is killed. I’m talking about kids being bounced around in foster homes for their entire childhood who are permanently scarred by it. I’m talking about kids such as those in Rw’s supposed family orphanage who never know what it’s like to be truely loved. Yes, never having been born is quite often better than those options.

  • Deven_Kale

    Nordog6561:

    A woman isn’t “nothing more” than anything, let alone a “baby carrier”
    just because she has natural moral obligation to protect her children.

    While we’re throwing around fallacies and ignoring actual arguments, I felt a need to mention your obvious appeal to nature.

  • Mycos

    And…. Hey Ericka! I seem to have developed a similar fascination with evolutionary psychology. Facebook me! We’ll chat. 

  • Deven Kale

    Rwlawoffice:
     

    The medical and accepted definition of a human being is an organism that is a homo sapien.

    The idea of homo-sapiens describes nothing more than a set of physical characteristics which set it apart from other animals that cannot reproduce with it. So what you’re saying is that it’s worth protecting because it looks like you. Which, by the way, neither a zygote nor blastocyst look human, that begins during the embryo stage.

    I’m sorry, but if you’re going to try and set human offspring apart from all other animals, you’re going to have to give me some reason other than “it looks like me.” There must be something different that sets them apart in a substantive way before I’m willing to accept that it has any more reason to be protected than a calf or a lamb. I absolutely refuse to use physical characteristics alone in making moral decisions. Since your argument is that this is really all that being “human” means, then I’m perfectly happy using the philosophical idea of “personhood” to determine value. As I said before, that point for me is when it likely becomes conscious, when it’s brain becomes capable of full awareness and decision making (to whatever degree it is at that stage).

    [W]hen faced with the obvious dilemma that this could also apply to people
    in comas, or dementia patients, you rely on the fact that at one time
    they had it so it deserves to be honored

    I never made that argument, you must be confusing me with someone else. In fact, I do use the consciousness argument for people in comas. If they have been in a deep enough coma for a long enough time, then I would not consider it murder for someone to “unplug” that person, and neither would most medical professionals. They also realize that there is a point where a person is no longer really a “person,” and therefore letting them live is no longer important. Would I do it myself? I don’t know. I hope I never have to find out. As for dementia, they’re still aware, they still talk, they still have enough of their mental faculties to be generally cohesive. Those faculties may be warped, but they’re still there. It’s a completely different situation.

    Then finally, even if you finally acknowledge that yes it is a person,
    the mother still has the moral right to kill it because even though she
    was complicit in its creation, even if unwittingly, she has the absolute
    right to kill a life because her’s has been changed.

    This is also an argument I never made. What you fail to realize is that I agree with the laws as they currently stand. I do not believe that a child should be aborted during the third trimester, purely because there is reason to believe at that point it has consciousness and is therefore a “person” worth protecting. I have no problem with first term abortions at all because there is literally no reason to think of it as a “person.” 13 weeks is also plenty of time to decide whether or not bringing a child into their world is moral or immoral. Second term abortions are a gray area for me, I haven’t entirely made up my mind yet.

    Finally, you are left with arguing that an act of nature has some sort
    of intent that you know does not exist.  Nature has no ability to have
    intent so it cannot be intentional or even negligent.

    The intent of that argument was to ask if, since the mother didn’t undertake any actions to ensure implantation or prevent spontaneous abortion, should she then be considered negligient? Or do you realize that the zygote and blastocyst are not actually people and not worth those same protections? As you may or may not know, the blastocyst stage ends at just five days after conception. At that point the mother never knows she is pregnant. If you are not willing to argue the same requirements upon the mother during those five days as the rest of her pregnancy then what, really, is your argument? Is it only worth protecting once the woman discovers she’s pregnant? If so, then you yourself have actually set an arbitrary point at which it requires protection as well. An ad hoc argument which is only used to support your immoral idea of forced birth.

    At least my argument of “personhood” is used consistently throughout a persons lifetime, from conception until their ultimate death.

  • Rwlawoffice

    Deven,

    I could not locate your new post to continue so I will post here.

    Your notion that DNA only describes our physical appearance begs the question. Our DNA is more than just our physical appearance. It is what makes us human beings as opposed to other species and we all know what that entails.  To understand that and then deny that it doesn’t count until the development reaches a certain point is to simply deny that it is human until a certain point. So you are then left with what I described, qualifying different determinations of personhood. Which in my opinion makes the position of abortion morally reprehensible.   

    • Kodie

       

      we all know what that entails.

      You are equating fertilized waste material as a whole human being on the premise that they’re not a tick or a pig. We all know what that entails. As long as the egg gets a sperm, it’s all of a sudden a human being, and an abortion is “murder” as if a whole grown sentient human being, and not the rather amiable extermination or slaughter you engage in. You idolize the life of one species in the realm of the imaginary. “Will she have blue eyes?” We don’t know if it’s a she yet, and it doesn’t have eyes.

      • Nordog6561

        Your thinking is repugnant.  Utterly repugnant.

        It’s the same thinking the leads to the gas chambers and ovens.

        • Kodie

          Oh have I offended you. Poor Nordog. You think a belly full of jizz is just like a whole Jew. Exaggerate some more, you are such a drama queen.

          • Rwlawoffice

             I did not read that he was offended, just that he accurately described your thinking.  It is repugnant.  But than, you have already shown your level of morality in this discussion so none of us are surprised.

          • Nordog6561

            No, I am not offended.  You mistake the recognition of repugnance with being offended.  This is not surprising given your continued inability to recognize even the most simple of distinctions.

            And with each comment you post you further demonstrate your abject repugnance.

            For the record, the equation in my last post was really about you, your ilk, and the Nazis.

            It bears noting that while Godwin’s Law may here be invoked, that law does not require the given Nazi reference to be an inappropriate one.

    • Deven Kale

       No, you said nothing about DNA. What you said was that the fact that it was a Homo Sapiens is what made it human. Homo Sapiens is a species classification, a description of physical characteristics used to differentiate one animal from others which cannot reproduce with it. Now you’re changing your argument from that of species to that of DNA.

      Which really makes no difference anyway. As others have pointed out here, just human DNA is still no reason to protect it. Many others have asked you about cancer cells. They also contain human DNA and yet anybody who has them would do their best to kill them all without any moral concerns. You yourself would do the same. That proves that simply containing human DNA is also not a reason for greater protections than cancer cells. There must be something more than that. I argue that the “something more” that everybody, including you, is actually looking for is the philosophical idea of “personhood,” which begins when that child gains the capacity for consciousness.

      To understand that and then deny that it doesn’t count until the
      development reaches a certain point is to simply deny that it is human
      until a certain point

      I do not deny that it’s human. If human is simply a question of DNA or physicality, then I definitely don’t deny it. By your definition of human a cancer cell is also human, as well as shed skin and toenails. Whether or not it fits your definition of “human” still does not mean that it deserves protection. As I said above, a collection of cells must have more than just human DNA in order to be protected.

      You and Nordog accuse me (and others) of making up Ad Hoc arguments purely in order to support abortion, where it really is the two of you who do so to force birth. When we try and apply your logic universally, such as in the case of cancer or toenails, you state that we’re being ridiculous and trying to be deliberately deceptive. When we point out that you use different logic in order to determine the value of a life after birth, you completely ignore it.

      Now tell me, who’s really being deceptive? Who’s really got the Ad Hoc arguments? And even worse, based on previous comments and arguments of myself and others, Which position really has the moral high ground: Pro-choice, which recognizes some lives are better off never beginning, or forced birth, where the suffering and abuse of those children who should have been aborted means nothing at all?

  • Rwlawoffice

    I did not intend to change my argument. My argument is consistent- the developing fetus is a human from start to finish.  It is different from cancer cells and any other cells in the body of the mother or the father- these will never grow into a full grown baby, but the fetus will.

    What is an artificial distinction is the idea that a human is not worth protecting until someone declares it to be a person.  it was artificial when the Supreme Court did it and it is artificial now.

    As far as your contention that pro choice arguments have a higher moral ground because these arguments recognize that some lives are better off never beginning because forced birth leads to abuse,  I suspect you do not realize the logical fallacy of this argument.   First, you must first base this argument on the unproven and biased idea that the life has not already begun, when even scientifically it has.  Second, you must base it on the unproven notion that any abortion prevented leads to an abused child. That is simply a presupposition that nullifies the argument.  without these presuppositions, you are left with the argument that one person has the right to take the life of another person because they want to. I do not find that argument moral or persuasive.

    It appears to me that this discussion has run its course.  I appreciate your civil tone and look forward to doing it again.

    • Deven Kale

       I can agree with that, the discussion has pretty much run it’s course. We are no longer making any fresh arguments. I would just like to say two things though, and I’ll be finished. Well, unless you write a massive monologue type response on the assumption that I’m not going to respond to it, as I’ve been known to do myself. ;)

      First, you must first base this argument on the unproven and biased idea
      that the life has not already begun, when even scientifically it has. 

      I wasn’t speaking of life in terms of “a principle or force that is considered to underlie the distinctive quality of animate beings,” so much as, “the sequence of physical and mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual.” Considering the philosophical nature of my arguments, I’m surprised you didn’t catch that. ;)

      Second, you must base it on the unproven notion that any abortion
      prevented leads to an abused child.

      I wasn’t presupposing that all abortions prevented would have ended in abuse, but that any abortion prevented could have done so. The primary reason that I believe it should be a womans right to decide to abort the child is because she should be able to prevent that child from being born into that life without having to explain why to anyone else. I also have just enough faith in humanity to believe that this is the primary reason why most abortions are performed.

  • Susan

    Why is it that when people debate abortion they never bring up the right of a woman to the use of her own body? Men never face using their bodies to grow human beings. Watching someone else do it will never make any man understand what a huge thing it is to have a baby. For the mother that is just the beginning.  She will be responsible for that person for the rest of her life. The only way anyone could think it would be right to force a woman to carry a baby for nine months against her will, would be if they considered women to be sub-human, not having even most basic human rights.  People who are pro-coat hanger should be after the government to support research for birth control that always works. Our children should be educated on how to use it and have it readily available to them.

    • Nordog6561

       “Why is it that when people debate abortion they never bring up the right of a woman to the use of her own body?”

      Never brought up?

      It’s only been mentioned on this thread about 100 times.

    • Deven Kale

      Why is it that when people debate abortion they never bring up the right of a woman to the use of her own body?

      Two things:
      1) It has been brought up in this particular debate, numerous times (as Nordog stated with his “100 times” comment).
      2) The reason it’s not brought up is because, ultimately, it’s a useless argument. The question is not really about whether or not the woman has a right to bodily autonomy. Among other things, it’s about whether or not her right to autonomy trumps any right to life the developing child may have.

      There are many arguments for abortion that are much better than the bodily autonomy argument. It’s best to stick with the ones that actually have greater impact on the rights of the child in the first place. Bodily autonomy is an argument for those whose arguments lack any substantial depth, and it almost always fails in any debate once it’s brought up.

      • Nordog6561

         Deven, another consideration here is that “bodily autonomy” as some kind of absolute principle for unlimited access to  abortion is contradictory to Roe vs. Wade itself.

        • Deven Kale

           In a sense, you’re right. Maybe that’s one of the reasons the argument fails so often.

  • mck8ty

    Firstly, thank you for your comments at the end of this article….it helped quell my rage to hear rationality after reading this insanity.

    If you don’t want to have an abortion, if you believe in souls and that you have a duty to protect them, DON’T HAVE ONE.  Jesus Christ!!  How hard is that to understand?

    On a separate note, I know another woman who was conceived in rape who is also a Republican, Pro-Life hypocrite as a result….however, forgive me for saying, she is exceptionally, almost shockingly ugly, and Hispanic.  I wonder how far this campaign would get if she was the poster child.

    • Nordog

      “If you don’t want to have an abortion, if you believe in souls and that you have a duty to protect them, DON’T HAVE ONE.”

      This is brilliant.  You realize that don’t you?  Simply brilliant.

      “On a separate note, I know another woman who was conceived in rape who is also a Republican, Pro-Life hypocrite as a result….however, forgive me for saying, she is exceptionally, almost shockingly ugly, and Hispanic. I wonder how far this campaign would get if she was the poster child.”

      This is compassion.  You realize that don’t you?  Utter compassion.

      It’s as if your fatuousness got into a race with your bigotry and it was a photo finish.

  • Nordog

    “And I quote: “it is telling that pro-aborts are so keen on reducing the conversation to the extreme and admitedly hard cases of the blastocyst, zygote, etc.”But didn’t YOU choose to support your argument with an extreme example?”

    It also bears noting here that the exteme and admittedly hard cases of the blastocyst, zygote, etc. have been addressed from the pro-life side here.  Of course those arguments have been rejected.

    Yet, I’ve seen little response, if any, to the other examples of extremely late term abortions like Partial Birth Abortion, and the outright infanticide of killing actual babies outside the womb.  These things do happen.  Citing “autonomy” or “the appeal to emotion” don’t really address the problem.

    For the latter, one should have emotion about the event.

    For the former, PBA requires holding the baby inside the womb even longer in order to kill it first.  And when the baby does somehow “make it out alive” being thrown in to a bucket of water or otherwise “dispatched” shows just exactly what the procedure is about: killing the baby.  Clearly both of these are cases not concerned with bodily autonomy, but rather concerned with ensuring the baby is dead.

    • Deven Kale

      Nordog, why did you take the bait and let somebody resurrect this discussion? Now I have to join in and correct you again….  *sigh*

      Yet, I’ve seen little response, if any, to the other examples of
      extremely late term abortions like Partial Birth Abortion, and the
      outright infanticide of killing actual babies outside the womb.

      You’ve been given the response those examples deserve. I believe you’re talking about the United States, where your examples are already completely illegal and do not happen. If you have examples of when PBA does happen and is not prosecuted, I will guarantee you they were extremely rare and unusual circumstances. Although I will most likely agree with you in that they should not be happening at all.

      If you’re referring to drowning babies in buckets again, I will repeat: That is something that, to my knowledge, is not done here in the United States. That is something reprehensible that is done in China due to their one child per family law.

      Edit: wrong acronym.

      • Rwlawoffice

        Deven,  I believe that Nordog’s point is that once you start devaluing life in the womb than every point along that line is arbitrary, even to the point of killing infants right out of the womb at birth. 

      • Nordog6561

         “Nordog, why did you take the bait and let somebody resurrect this
        discussion? Now I have to join in and correct you again….  *sigh*”

        LOL!  Sorry my friend.

        “I believe you’re talking about the United States, where your examples
        are already completely illegal and do not happen. If you have examples
        of when PBA does happen and is not prosecuted, I will guarantee you they
        were extremely rare and unusual circumstances. Although I will most
        likely agree with you in that they should not be happening at all.”

        Admittedly I am not up to speed on the exact nature of the statues regarding these “procedures”.  I do know that the current American president has opposed legislation to make PBA and post-birth-failed-abortion-infanticide illegal.

        But all this really kinda misses the original point of my mentioning them in the previous discussions.

        The complaint and claim that the blastocyst/zygote/etc. is obviously not a human baby is presented as an argument in favor of abortion.  It is important to note that, even if true, that complaint and claim bears no relevance to the cases of extremely late term abortions and infanticide that do happen regardless of what the current statutes happen to be.  Additionally, as mentioned, statutes prohibiting these things are opposed categorically by some on the pro-abort side.

        It is nice to reflect that you likely think these types of things shouldn’t happen at all.

        FTR, I am not one who opposes a procedure to save the life of the mother simply because a child my die.

        What I do oppose is a procedure that is considered a failure if a child lives.  That’s not medicine.  That’s killings.

        And while I oppose euthanasia for people, it seem appropriate for this comment thread.

        If you are compelled to respond again I will try to give you the last word (but I can’t promise).  ;-)

        Best to you.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/5S5RH6LWX6YYWGVTPGZL2ARBJY Kimberly

    are you fucking kidding me?? Every women has the right to make her own decision for her own body. Rape is a crime… and your mentally fucked afterwards….then you get pregnant as a result of it and you want the government to tell you that you cannot abort the pregnancy???good for your mom Rebecca…you did hear her say that if she had the choice back then she would have had an abortion, right? Luckily for you she didnt have that choice then. But i’ll be dammned if anyone can tell me what the fuck to do with my body and the child that is growing inside it.

  • polnick

    Victims of rape pregnancies should not commit the sin of abortion. They must follow the Lords wishes and give birth to a holy child. The rapist is the sinner; he should come forward and offer to pay child support. The mother has a choice of accepting the money or calling the cops.

  • short_visit

    “I just never would have existed” You can’t abort someone that doesn’t exist.  Abortion is the elimination of a someone.  I know pro-life atheists who are pro-life simply because the zygote is distinctly and genetically a human being who they happen to assign rights to based on their membership of the human race.  Atheists have recourse to natural law and don’t have to acknowledge a soul in order to be pro-life.  I could write more, I honestly believe you are fleshing out some serious issues in writing, I am glad I came across it.  But I don’t think your logic and sweeping statements hold up to much scrutiny.


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