Roe Is a Mirage: Conservatives Wrongly Think No Roe Means No Abortion

Roe Is a Mirage: Conservatives Wrongly Think No Roe Means No Abortion October 3, 2018

Kavanaugh SCOTUS supreme court Roe Wade abortion

Conservatives are eager to see Brett Kavanaugh placed on the Supreme Court in the hope that they can overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 decision that made abortion legal (with restrictions) across the U.S. But Roe is a mirage, and conservatives should avoid being taken in by the deception.

Overturning Roe allows the states to regulate abortion. Red states would likely impose further restrictions on abortion or make it illegal, and blue states would keep abortion available, but that’s not the issue. There are two reasons why pro-life conservatives shouldn’t focus on Roe.

Unlike most of what I’ve written about abortion, in this post I will not be telling conservatives why they’re wrong about abortion or arguing over definitions. I want to make a simple argument that relies on non-controversial facts that should be easy to accept. Pro-life America, if abortion is your enemy, pro-choicers should be your allies, and Roe shouldn’t be your target.

1. Illegal abortion just means that abortions will be done illegally

A popular conservative Christian radio host said in 2016,

Pro-lifers would like to see abortion abolished, but the only way to really abolish abortion ultimately is to make it illegal, and then the incidence of abortion would shrink to virtually nothing.

This is completely wrong. Abortion made illegal would mean that abortions would be still be done, just illegally. The rate of abortions in pre-Roe America was roughly twice the per capita rate of today, and most of those were illegal. The international data confirms the U.S. experience: “Abortion rates are highest [in countries] where the procedure is illegal” (more here).

We also have more alternatives now than in pre-Roe America, making illegal abortion much safer and more convenient. Medicine is available for inducing therapeutic miscarriage at home, safe and effective for first- and second-trimester abortions. An unintended pregnancy can be detected with a test kit and then treated at home if done promptly.

Forcing abortion underground by making it illegal backfires on conservatives. With no need for the woman to even leave the house, crisis pregnancy clinics would be out of business. That’s an opportunity lost to argue against abortion. No abortion clinics means no pointless regulations imposed by conservative legislatures, which would have the happy consequence of allowing abortions in red states to be done sooner than they are now.

There will still be the need for the rare late-term abortion (about 0.1 percent of abortions in the U.S. are performed after 21 weeks), so there will still be demand for surgical procedures. To Christians horrified by the thought of Kermit Gosnell’s filthy illegal abortion clinic, they must keep in mind that this is what may replace Planned Parenthood’s clean, safe, and regulated clinics if abortion is driven underground.

2. Abortion isn’t the problem; unintended pregnancy is the problem

There is no path to zero abortions. People will keep having sex, accidents will happen, and no amount of Christianity, moral badgering, or puritanical laws will eliminate all abortions. But I know a way to cut it by as much as 90 percent, which is a lot more than it’ll get cut by making it illegal. Abortions are just the symptom; the actual problem is unintended pregnancy.

Valerie Tarico has outlined a plan for reducing the number of abortions dramatically over twenty years, primarily by reducing unintended pregnancy. Conservatives, do you want to do something more concrete than just voting for the anti-abortion candidate? Do you want to reduce abortions, actually do something practical to cut the number by as much as 90 percent? In brief, here is the approach you should lobby for.

  • Create programs to encourage and teach parents to overcome their discomfort with having frank and thorough discussions of sex, sexual health, sexual ethics, and contraception. The message should make clear that sexual desire is natural, not shameful.
  • Schools must also cover this material, and children must be taught before they become sexually active. The curriculum must learn from the best U.S. and international programs. For example, abstinence-only training has had its chance, and it fails. Teen pregnancy rates are roughly proportional to the local religiosity, meaning more pregnancy where Christianity is strongest. We have a lot of room for improvement: “Among the 21 countries with complete statistics, the pregnancy rate among 15- to 19-year olds was the highest in the United States (57 pregnancies per 1,000 females) and the lowest rate was in Switzerland (8).”
  • The Pill and condoms have the advantage of being familiar, but there are far more effective contraceptives today. Long-acting reversible contraceptives like IUDs and subdermal implants, once in place, require no user action. They’re also cheaper in the long run. Contraceptives should be cheap (subsidized if necessary) and easily available.
  • Unplanned children (or worse, unwanted children) put a disproportionate strain on poor women, so reproductive health care should be subsidized to make it available to everyone.
  • Financial concerns are a major factor in some women’s desire for abortion. Policies that create income equality and encourage family-friendly workplaces (with benefits like maternity leave and affordable child care) will reduce abortions due to financial need.
  • Fetal health issues are another factor driving some abortions. Reduce these by providing and promoting prenatal care.
  • Fund research for birth control for men.

(For more, read the original article here.)

Notice the emphasis with this plan: most of these points are aimed at avoiding unintended pregnancy or eliminating reasons for abortion. Conservative voters anxious about abortion should be able to get behind this plan.

I’ll add one more point: conservatives should remove virginity from its pedestal. Just because virginity was a big deal in the Old Testament doesn’t make it relevant today (the Old Testament also justified slavery and genocide, but we don’t celebrate those today). The Old Testament’s concept of virginity also wasn’t fair since it only imposed on women.

Sex isn’t like a fine wine that gets better the longer you wait for it. Sex on the wedding night is a lot more satisfying if the couple has had a chance to practice. Abstinence is fine for some, but for others, consensual premarital sex will be a part of growing up.

Conservative voters have been led around by politicians for decades, but note that these politicians aren’t motivated to get rid of abortions. If they did, how would they convince their electorate that the sky is falling and that only by voting for them can we avoid moral collapse? They need problems, and if they can’t find a real one, they’ll exaggerate a trivial one.

The pro-lifers who agree that this is the best way to reduce abortions should note an important benefit: they’re now working with pro-choice advocates. By bypassing abortion and focusing on the cause, both groups are working toward a shared goal. Once they get over the novelty and ignore calls from politicians who may prefer the impasse of the status-quo, it will be refreshing to work with an enormous new collection of allies.

Some pro-lifers won’t accept this approach because it may make premarital sex more likely, but this tips their hand. They’re not anti-abortion, they’re just advocating a prudish policy toward sex. But they can’t have it both ways. They need to pick whether they want the current approach—a high abortion rate to satisfy their instinct to be tough on sex—or a lenient policy toward premarital sex by making sex safer and far less likely to lead to unintended pregnancy.

Suppose we lived in a society where every teenager gets a car on their sixteenth birthday. You wouldn’t let kids get their own car without insisting on comprehensive driver’s education. Now return to our world, where it’s not a car that they get but a sexually mature body. We shouldn’t let kids get that adult body without comprehensive education on how it works and how to use it properly.

Pro-life America, if abortion is your enemy, pro-choicers should be your allies, and Roe shouldn’t be your target. Focus on the real problem.

More posts on abortion:

 

Have no illusions, if abortion really were murder,
it would come as an instinctive reaction from women.
It would come with such force that men would be confused
by the average woman’s revulsion towards abortion.
— commenter Chuck Wolber

.

Image via Torsten Mangner, CC license
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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • swbarnes2

    Conservative voters anxious about abortion should be able to get behind this plan.

    Yet, conservatives will not rally around this plan, and you know that.

    There is a perfectly plausible and simple explanation why they will not, a simple explanation that explains a huge variety of pubic statements and preferred and enacted conservative policies. But you will never acknowledge it.

    • Now I’m intrigued–fill us in.

      • Jemolk

        This isn’t about abortion, or the widdle baybeeeeez or any of the other crap they keep rambling about in an attempt to drum up some modicum of sympathy. It’s control, pure and simple. Control of women specifically, for this. They straight-up don’t care about any of the concerns you’ve raised. They will blow them off and scream nonsense about responsibility. Perhaps this post from Libby Anne from years ago will help illustrate: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism/2012/10/how-i-lost-faith-in-the-pro-life-movement.html

        • Pofarmer

          Hey, I just linked that post again in this thread!!!! I have to admit, I read it as I was deconverting, and it was tremendously eye opening for me.

        • That’s a great blog. I think that post was where I first read that illegal abortion doesn’t do much to lower the rate.

  • igotbanned999

    Usually when I point this out they just say something like ‘well then you liberals shouldn’t try to ban guns either because people will still get them illegally, according to your own argument’

    • Michael Neville

      To which the obvious response is “so?”

      • igotbanned999

        ‘So you call it a bad argument when we use it for guns, but then you go and use it for abortion, you hypocrites’ – I’ve pretty much memorized their script.

    • eric

      I’m not sure mainstream liberalism is currently behind a comprehensive ban. Things like trigger guards, background checks at gun shows, restrictions on high-capacity magazines, yes. Here is the Dem National Party statement: “We recognize that the individual right to bear arms is an important part of the American tradition, and we will preserve Americans’ Second Amendment right to own and use firearms. We believe that the right to own firearms is subject to reasonable regulation…”

      But come to think of it, you’re right to draw the analogy, because conservative opposition to things like HPV vaccines, the pill, and sex ed is pretty much as nonsensical as opposition to things like making gun shows use the same background checks shop owners are required to use.

  • Michael Neville

    The anti-abortion fanatics have been told for years that the most reliable way to lower the number of abortions is comprehensive sex education and easy access to reliable and cheap contraception. Fundamentalist Protestants refuse to consider effective sex education and Catholic bishops and some fundamentalists think that Baby Jesus cries whenever contraception is used.

    • Greg G.

      If Kavanaugh gets confirmed, concerned citizens can buy him beer the night before the SCOTUS convenes for the rest of his life.

      If he gets confirmed, it will be the first time in history that crying and emphasizing the love of beer will have been a successful strategy in a job interview. I hope that does not become the new norm.

      • Dom Saunders

        Please. We been jumped the shark at this point. What even is the norm now?

      • I like the suggestion of 18-year terms on SCOTUS, with each presidential term getting two slots to fill. But that would take a constitutional amendment.

  • Jim Jones

    > Abstinence is fine for some, but for others, consensual premarital sex will be a part of growing up.

    IMO, marriage should occur after the first child is born. As for abortion:

    Abortion In the Netherlands

    In the Netherlands, abortion is freely available on demand. Yet the Netherlands boasts the lowest abortion rate in the world, and the complication and death rates for abortion are minuscule. How do they do it? First of all, contraception is widely available and free — it’s covered by the national health insurance plan. Holland also carries out extensive public education on contraception, family planning, and sexuality. Of course, some people say that teaching kids about sex and contraception will only encourage them to have lots of sex. But Dutch teenagers tend to have less frequent sex, starting at an older age, than American teenagers, and the Dutch teenage pregnancy rate is 6 times lower than in the U.S.

    https://www.pbs.org/newshour/health/spring-fever

    (Half of all US pregnancies are unplanned).

    • Pofarmer

      This, this is what they simply don’t get. I’ve tried to have this exact conversation with “friends” on facebook, and they simply can’t comprehend it, apparently.

      • Greg G.

        Have you tried posting to Facebook from behind a lectern? Many will believe most anything if said from a lectern with the magic buzzwords.

        • Pofarmer

          Maybe I should post it from a Russian Bot account.

      • Adam “Giauz” Birkholtz
        • Greg G.

          Facebook is where you lie to people you know. Twitter is where you tell the truth to strangers, unless you can claim presidential immunity.

    • lady_black

      If marriage only occurred after the first child was born, my husband and I would never have been allowed to marry, as we never intended to have any children. Bollocks to that!

      • Jim Jones

        That works too, except for religious lunatics.

        • lady_black

          No, it most assuredly DOES NOT WORK. I wanted to marry my husband, and I am not a “religious lunatic” and marriage isn’t a religious thing.

        • Jim Jones

          But the religious lunatics like the RCC want to force all couples to have children, their own desires notwithstanding.

        • lady_black

          Meh…

        • ephemerol

          For over a thousand years marriage was a civil institution only, as the one-and-only christian church wanted nothing to do with marriage because it was seen as licensing the “abomination” that is sex. Kinda like how contraception is viewed today by the same sorts of folks. Or in skl’s terminology, kevlar vests…

          Now all of a sudden, marriage is “between one man and one woman,” it’s “sacred” because it’s “instituted by god.” Even though it never was any of those things before.

        • lady_black

          They’re confusing “marriage” with “Holy Matrimony.”

        • ephemerol

          Matrimony that was post-hoc’ed into being “holy” when they realized they could turn it into a source of both revenue and control, which they hadn’t been capitalizing on due to “misplaced” priorities. Talk about missed opportunities!

        • lady_black

          Meh… nobody needs them.

  • eric

    How naive. The point of conservativism in this area is to promote biblical values and punish dirty sluts – i.e. anyone not conservative christian white women having sex outside of marriage. They will never ‘remove virginity from the podium’ because coercing virginity is the point; anti-abortion laws are merely one method to reach that goal.

    This is why many of them oppose birth control that prevents conception. Clearly such methods help reduce abortion rates, but they don’t care; such BC techniques let women have sex with fewer negative consequences, and conservatives don’t like that.

    This is why they oppose HPV vaccination; again, this allows women to have sex with fewer negative consequences, and they oppose that.

    They want women to pay and be punished for sexual freedom.

    As for overturning Roe not eliminating illegal abortion, that’s not really important to them. First, because illegal dangerous abortions meet the goal of punishing women for sexual promiscuity. And second, because they want abortifacent drugs and procedures available for their wealthy white daughters. Having to go out of state or to an expensive, high-class doctor to get the safe, necessary drugs or procedures is a perfect fit to the conservative evangelical lifestyle, which is to ensure they can access all the benefits privilege will buy for their own families while ensuring the same services are denied to the poor and women of color. Because when a young white evangelical women gets pregnant accidentally, it’s a travesty that must be fixed because you wouldn’t want it to ruin her entire life, would you? While if a poor woman, non-christian woman, or woman of color gets pregnant accidentally, well then you got what you deserved you dirty dirty slut.

    • Pennybird

      They also want women encumbered by as many children as possible so they can’t pursue interests outside the family like careers. Or “their” jobs as they will say.

  • skl

    As a nonreligious person who doesn’t like abortion or the
    allowance of abortion, I will comment briefly.

    “1. Illegal abortion just means that abortions will be done illegally”

    And illegal sexual abuse just means that sexual abuse will be done illegally.

    Same for illegal murder/robbery/pollution/etc.

    “2. Abortion isn’t the problem; unintended pregnancy is the problem”

    Abortion is just backup “contraception”.
    [I put quotes around that word because some of the pills for it do not prevent conception but instead assure
    the death of the product of conception by preventing its implantation in the
    uterine wall. (a.k.a. “abortifacients”.)]

    Pregnancy prevention methods (e.g. condoms, pills) have been around for generations and sex ed is at an all time
    high via school curricula, libraries, the internet. But there’s no such thing as a sure thing. And you can’t fix stupid.
    So, every year about a million more unintended humans are killed in the womb.

    • skl

      Also, if “Roe is a mirage”, then virtually all the Kavanaugh opponents seem to be quite obsessed with protecting a mirage.

      • ephemerol

        Roe exists because of the consequences from abortion being illegal, as it ubiquitously was prior to Roe.

        What IS a mirage is NOT better outcomes from safe, legal abortion.

        What IS a mirage is how conservatives like Greg Koukl (cited in the OP, which apparently you missed, along with the entire point) deceiving themselves and each other, forgetting the negative consequences experienced prior to Roe, and imagining that going back to that would simply mean that there wouldn’t be any abortions anymore. That’s NOT what happened in the past when abortion was ubiquitously illegal. No amount of lies coming from conservative camps will make that be the case in the distopian future conservatives are planning while imaging those plans will lead to some kind of utopian one.

        Even you yourself admit sexual abuse/murder/robbery/pollution/etc. still happen, despite the fact that it’s illegal. So which is it? Do people always obey laws, or not? Be consistent. This is the mirage in action, right here: you think don’t think people will always obey other laws, but you do seem to think they will always obey abortion laws, even though we have data showing that’s not the case. You’re kidding yourself = a mirage.

        Kavanaugh opponents are trying to protect us all from regressing back to less civilized times. That’s very practical. There’s nothing illusory about that.

        • skl

          Your post IS a mirage of reasoning.

        • ephemerol

          Care to explain? Or would you rather just go for the bald assertion?

        • skl

          “Care to explain?”

          No, but I was particularly amazed by this mirage:

          “… you think don’t think people will always obey other laws…”

          Moving on.

        • ephemerol

          I guess you had a couple of options: you could have asked for clarification, or you could go the equivalent of the grammar nazi route.

          Gonna stick with the bare assertion, I see. Because you know you’ve got nothing. Last time I’ll waste my time on you and your juvenile “rubber and glue” routine.

        • Herald Newman

          I serious wonder why anybody tries to engage with you.

    • RichardSRussell

      OK, so it sounds like you’re totally on board with Bob’s proposal, right? Because you’d really, truly like to cut down on those million deaths you mention, true?

      • skl

        “OK, so it sounds like you’re totally on board with Bob’s
        proposal, right? Because you’d really, truly like to cut down on those million
        deaths you mention, true?”

        Let me put it this way:

        I’d like to cut down on the number of criminals killed in the
        course of committing their crimes. But I’m not totally on
        board with providing free Kevlar vests to those considering committing those
        crimes.

        • RichardSRussell

          But the bottom line is, fewer “crimes” is better, right? And you’re on board with fewer “crimes”, right? So if you see social policies that have been proven to lead to that situation, they’re overall a good thing, right?

          Analogy: Starving people are likely to commit crimes in order to eat. Therefore society is better off setting up free food-distribution centers to both support the positive benefit of fewer starving people and minimize the negative harm of theft. Doesn’t this make sense?

        • Pofarmer

          good luck.

        • skl

          “But the bottom line is, fewer “crimes” is better, right?”

          No, the bottom line here was fewer “deaths.”
          More specifically, how you try to reduce deaths.

        • Otto

          Might makes right in your world…so I still don’t understand why you have a problem with abortion.

        • skl

          “Might makes right in your world…”

          Not in my world. In my world there is no “right”.
          In my world, Might makes the way it’s going to be.

          “… so I still don’t understand why you have a problem with abortion.”

          Because I don’t like it. Maybe some day Might will once
          again make my way the way it’s going to be.

        • Otto

          “Not in my world..”

          Bullshit…you have made that argument many times.

          “Because I don’t like it.”

          Nobody cares what you like…it is not your decision.

        • RichardSRussell

          Well, the reason I put “crimes” in quotation marks is because I don’t see abortions as criminal acts. But if you do, then logically you’d be in favor of fewer of them, right?

          But, since you’re unwilling to go down that road, let me rephrase the question. You’re in favor of fewer “deaths”, right? So logically you should favor proven practices that will reduce them, yes? (This isn’t a trick question, really, just trying to get you to acknowledge that Bob’s got a good point here, using your own standards.)

        • skl

          “Well, the reason I put “crimes” in quotation marks is because I don’t see abortions as criminal acts. But if you do…”

          I don’t.
          I view as criminal acts only those actions for which there is a criminal statute.

          “You’re in favor of fewer “deaths”, right?”

          That’s like saying ‘I’m in favor of fewer lives because all lives end in deaths.’

          But I’d never say or think such a thing. Everyone has to die.
          But not everyone has to be a killer.

          “So logically you should favor proven practices that will reduce them, yes? (This isn’t a trick question, really, just trying to get you to acknowledge that Bob’s got a good point here, using your own standards.)”

          I’d like laws that forbid all abortions. But I’m not even aware of any laws for me to like or dislike which forbid access to Bob’s “proven practices.”

          This can serve as my last response to you today.

        • BlackMamba44

          Fucking weasel

        • RichardSRussell

          “You’re in favor of fewer “deaths”, right?”

          That’s like saying ‘I’m in favor of fewer lives because all lives end in deaths.’

          But I’d never say or think such a thing.

          No, it’s not like saying or thinking such a thing. What it is like saying is what you actually said 2 notches up from there. To refresh your memory, here it is:

          “But the bottom line is, fewer “crimes” is better, right?”

          No, the bottom line here was fewer “deaths.”

          So why am I not completely justified in taking you at your word that you’re in favor of fewer deaths? Really, this isn’t a hard question. Are you or are you not in favor of fewer deaths? You said you were, but then you got all evasive on me when I practically quoted you verbatim on it. Are you or aren’t you?

          I’d like laws that forbid all abortions. But I’m not even aware of any laws for me to like or dislike which forbid access to Bob’s “proven practices.”

          Well, good, at least you recognize that what Bob is proposing is perfectly legal. Which gets me back to my original question. Granted that all those ideas are perfectly legal — and have been shown to be effective — are you on board with them? Would you support them as a matter of public policy? And, if not, why not?

    • “1. Illegal abortion just means that abortions will be done illegally”
      And illegal sexual abuse just means that sexual abuse will be done illegally.

      Do you deliberately miss the point? Everyone else got it—making abortion illegal won’t reduce the incidence.

      “2. Abortion isn’t the problem; unintended pregnancy is the problem”
      Abortion is just backup “contraception”.

      Contraception is far easier than an abortion.

      [I put quotes around that word because some of the pills for it do not prevent conception but instead assure
      the death of the product of conception by preventing its implantation in the
      uterine wall. (a.k.a. “abortifacients”.)]

      This distinction is important?

      Pregnancy prevention methods (e.g. condoms, pills) have been around for generations

      The post made clear that LARCs are far better.

      and sex ed is at an all time

      US stats on teen pregnancy show that we’re doing a poor job.

      So, every year about a million more unintended humans are killed in the womb.

      I’m missing your point. You’re just throwing up your hands? Nothing can be done?

      • skl

        And illegal sexual abuse just means that sexual abuse will be done illegally.

        “Do you deliberately miss the point? Everyone else got it—making abortion illegal won’t reduce the incidence.”

        I guess you think that if sexual abuse was legal then the incidence of sexual abuse would be no higher than it is today. I don’t.

        Abortion is just backup “contraception”.

        “Contraception is far easier than an abortion.”

        And when “contraception” fails, it’s easy to get an abortion.

        So, every year about a million more unintended humans are killed in the womb.

        “I’m missing your point. You’re just throwing up your hands? Nothing can be done?”

        Well, we could always supply more free “Kevlar vests”.
        (See my comment nearby.)

        • I guess you think that if sexual abuse was legal then the incidence of sexual abuse would be no higher than it is today.
          I don’t.

          By that logic, if we made abortion illegal, we might expect the incidence to go down. But we have data that says that this wouldn’t be the case!

          Do you understand the point yet? (I’m kidding, of course! I realize you don’t; I’m just not sure if it’s deliberate or not.)

          Look—if you have some sort of reading comprehension problem, that’s a shame, but you should go waste someone else’s time.

          And when “contraception” fails, it’s easy to get an abortion.

          Great!

        • skl

          Now I’m even more certain that you think that if sexual
          abuse was legal then the incidence of sexual abuse would be no higher than it is today.

          Great!

        • Now I’m even more certain that you have trouble stringing together any more than one phrase without looking like an idiot. Great!

        • skl

          Have a great day!

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower
        • Actually, I think God is OK with premarital sex as long as a man’s property (his wife or daughter) isn’t violated. A man having sex with an uncommitted woman is fine, but a man having sex with another man’s property is not.

      • epeeist

        Do you deliberately miss the point?

        This is skl you are responding to…

      • Pofarmer

        and sex ed is at an all time

        Anyone who is even vaguely familiar with sex education in America knows that, quite frankly, it sucks, and it is contradicted by religious boobs continually. Compared to European countries that actually really do a good job of sex education, we’re a sham.

      • lady_black

        skl believes that what he “doesn’t like” matters to anyone but himself. Until you undermine that delusion, you’re going to get nowhere fast.

    • Anthrotheist

      Your first point: illegal actions being done illegally does not invalidate the action being illegality.

      Your essential premise is correct. The difference is that sexual abuse, murder, robbery, pollution, etc. have clearly established explanations for their essential wrongness; in general, they share the basic premise: inviolability of a person’s right to self-autonomy (extended at least in part to one’s property). The essential reason for abortion being illegal hasn’t been established; if it had, and it was valid, courts around the world would be shifting inexorably away from legal abortion. To my mind, this is the reason why outlawing abortion will not reduce incidents of abortion: despite people knowing that it is illegal, nobody has been able to clearly spell out why it must be wrong (or at least why what is wrong for a mass of undifferentiated human cells is more important than what is wrong for a fully-grown and conscious human woman).

      Your second point: contraception isn’t a workable solution because of the inevitable stupidity of women (keeping in mind that no man has ever had to face down inescapable parenthood; men can give up their parental rights and responsibilities virtually before they have their pants back on). This of course grossly overlooks the incidents when conception happens not because of stupidity but because of a man’s malice! There is a reason why polls often show Americans being opposed to abortions except in cases of rape and incest.

      As for pregnancy prevention being around for generations: American healthcare is often prohibitively expensive without good insurance, which is only a benefit of good employment (which is never guaranteed and has diminished in the last half-century). School sex-ed is often too-little, too-late: teaching about STDs, and little more, in high school years after many girls begin puberty; and against conservative attempts to purge all information besides fruitless “just say no to sex” messages. And the internet, surely you jest? You might as well say, “kids in the 50’s knew what they needed to about sex because they could just ask their peers!”. It’s just as absurd.

      • skl

        “To my mind, this is the reason why outlawing abortion will not reduce incidents of abortion: despite people knowing that it is illegal, nobody has been able to clearly spell out why it must be wrong…”

        There is no such thing as “wrong”. There is only what people don’t like. The powers that be determine which likes become law. I don’t like abortion. Maybe someday the powers will make my “don’t like” law. Like they did before 1973.

        • Anthrotheist

          LOL. Well, moral relativism, over-extended to the point of moral nihilism, probably won’t find much agreement with most thoughtful atheists. But that conversation is way beyond the scope of this article.

        • skl

          “LOL.”

          Laugh if you must. Just don’t tase me, ‘bro.
          Or, just don’t kick me.

          http://www.patheos.com/blogs/accordingtomatthew/2018/10/male-feminist-roundhouse-kicks-pro-life-woman-at-rally-video/

        • Anthrotheist

          Tell you what, you agree to refrain from murdering abortion clinic workers, and I promise I won’t kick you.

          Sound fair?

        • skl

          Tell you what, you can kick every anti-abortion person who killed an abortion clinic worker, and I can kick every abortion clinic worker who killed pre-born humans.

          That sounds fair.

          But I bet my leg would be a lot more tired than yours.

        • pre-born humans.

          I imagine your looking heavenward, appealing for divine intervention, as you imagine a single cell that looks just like a really teeny newborn baby.

          How can I stay mad at you when you come out with such adorable childish claptrap?!

        • skl

          pre-born humans.

          “I imagine your looking heavenward, appealing for divine intervention, as you imagine a single cell that looks just like a really teeny newborn baby.”

          No, just looking at irrefutable science, and common sense.

        • BlackMamba44

          “Irrefutable science”.

          Show it.

          “Commom sense”:

          Bwahahahaha!

        • What you want is the dictionary. You’re claiming that the definition for “human” includes “single fertilized human egg cell.” Is that part of every dictionary’s definition?

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Cancer is human cells and human DNA just as much…and grows about as fast, too.

          So you’re pro-cancer, letting it kill hosts rather than being removed for the benefit OF the host?

        • Anthrotheist

          I kind of figured we would hit an impasse at your belief in prenatal personhood. All I can do now is remind you that society doesn’t recognize prenatal life as a full person, and it will have no reason to do so until an unassailable argument is presented for why it should. And even if that does come to pass, of course, there would be the new moral consideration of whether one person can be favored over the other (the fetus or the mother) and why.

          Until then, you are tacitly defending murderers by placing blame on the innocent healthcare workers who are the victims of those murders. I’ve grown accustomed to victim-blaming, but I never fail to find it repulsive.

        • Voting rights for –6 month olds!! Who’s with me?!

        • Anthrotheist

          I find the actual consequences of personhood-at-conception so much worse.

          -Birthdays would no longer be legally significant, since the “conception day” would have to be recognized as the beginning of a person’s life. All legal cutoffs, such as age of consent, purchasing alcohol or tobacco, voting, enlistment and selective service, etc. would either have to be legally changed or would come up almost a full year earlier.
          -All miscarriages would have to be reported, and the remains submitted for examination to determine cause-of-death and to have a death certificate officiated.
          -Any miscarriage that had any suspicious circumstances would have to be investigated for possible wrongful death, including interviewing the people of interest like the father, who’s identity would require fully disclosing the woman’s sexual activities. She could also be a suspect if there is any claim that she expressed displeasure at her pregnancy, after which she had an accident that resulted in the pregnancy self-aborting.
          -The 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution would become bizarre. Without any change, any pre-born person would not be a U.S. citizen and wouldn’t be guaranteed the full protections and considerations that citizenship entails. If a new amendment changed the conditions to any person conceived or naturalized in the U.S., then any visitor that gets pregnant on U.S. soil could apply for American citizenship for their child. This would also include any undocumented immigrants that can prove that they conceived a child on U.S. soil, even if those parents were here illegally.
          -What happens if a woman becomes pregnant and hides it? Is it okay for her to keep the existence of a new person secret, without documentation?
          -Birth certificates become redundant, since the legal beginning of personhood would require a conception certificate. Of course the new person needs a name, which is sure to be challenging for parents who want to use traditional boy’s or girl’s names since it is very difficult to determine the sex of a zygote.

        • Great points. I wonder if brown people coming here to conceive (thereby creating new microscopic US citizens) would cause the “personhood begins at conception” conservatives any heartburn.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Frighteningly enough, the current budget that the Repug House of Representatives is advancing has a clause affirming fetal personhood.

          https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/gop-tax-bill-fetal-personhood-legislation/

        • Anthrotheist

          Huh, I agree, that is frightening.

          To me, it tends to fall back to a basic concept, which is, “Can parents relinquish or be absolved of their parental rights and responsibilities?” This could be voluntary by the parents or enforced by the state.

          If the answer is “Yes”, then even if a fetus is a person, the pregnant woman is still entitled to the right to relinquish her parental status (or the state could deem her a danger), and the fetus will have to be removed from her care and given over to another caregiver or agency.

          If the answer is “No”, then no mother or father can ever give their child up for adoption ever again, and the state can never remove children from the parents’ home for the safety and wellbeing of those children.

          I can’t think of any other scenario that doesn’t involve some fundamentally unjust double standard.

        • You can redefine a word any way you like. But that’s the point: “personhood” doesn’t obviously include a microscopic cell, and by redefining the word, they’re admitting it.

          “Oh yeah? You’re saying ‘person’ doesn’t include the single cell? Well, we just redefined the word, so now it does!” That’s not much of an argument.

        • katiehippie

          But who gives a crap about the already born people. Oh! You don’t.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          “pre-born humans” is poisoning the well.

          Until it’s surviving on its own organs, it’s a parasite, not a human being.

        • Greg G.

          It’s like car ads that say you are pre-approved. It sounds like it means you are approved before you apply but it just means you are not approved yet.

        • Michael Neville

          So you want to go back to the days when women died during illegal abortions. Making abortions illegal won’t stop abortions, it’ll just make them illegal and unsafe.

        • Pofarmer

          Going back to before Roe goes further than that. Before Roe V Wade in many states it was illegal to sell birth control to unmarried women, or, sometimes, even married women without the permission of their husband. This is essentially going back to the idea of women as property. Which Doesn’t seem to bother them at all.

        • Michael Neville

          As noted elsewhere on this thread, many of the anti-abortion folks aren’t interested in “savin’ da babbies” as much as controlling women’s lives.

          Note that many anti-abortionists give a pass in cases of rape and incest. So if the woman didn’t enjoy the sex then she could have an abortion.

        • Pofarmer

          I think many of them do want to “save da baybeez” The problem is that they think that a fertilized egg is a baby. When you are opposed to the possible accidental flushing of a fertilized egg as murder, then, there isn’t much way left to reach you. Once again, in a facebook discussion, I brought up the fertility clinic fire question. The other poster was obviously quite flustered by it. But he said that he thought that the frozen embryos were “little frozen babies.” O.K. first off, you can’t freeze babies, so that ought to be the tipoff right there that maybe, just maybe there’s something wrong with your viewpoint. But I let it drop before I went that far. Religion poisons everything.

        • lady_black

          Freezing is definitely not recommended for babies.

        • Joe

          As noted elsewhere on this thread, many of the anti-abortion folks aren’t interested in “savin’ da babbies” as much as controlling women’s lives.

          This can be demonstrated in comment sections where trolls will post things like “I support abortion clinics in Blue states” or “abortion means less black babies” and nobody on the ‘pro-life” side calls them out on this. It’s pure hypocrisy and most support of a ban on abortion is mainly due to the fact that it is a strike at women’s rights.

        • skl

          You appear to be playing a numbers game. You’d probably say
          that some say that only about 8 women per year die these days from complications involving legal abortions (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4554338/
          )
          and some say this is lower than when abortion was illegal, and therefore abortion should be legal.

          But numbers don’t drive my likes and dislikes. Everyone has to die, whether I like it or not. But not everyone has to be a killer or die while authorizing the killing.

          On the subject of numbers, what I’d like to see is the number of killers who were arrested after their “patient” died from an illegal abortion in the pre-1973 times. If the official sources have identified the individuals who died from illegal abortions, certainly the official sources would be able eventually to identify the illegal abortionists responsible, and what their prison sentence was.

        • Michael Neville

          So you don’t care if women die or not. Pardon me if I find your misogyny more than just distasteful.

        • Pofarmer

          What in the actual fuck is this person on about?

        • skl

          Good bye.

        • Michael Neville

          You’re leaving? ‘Bye.

        • I didn’t realize you were so interested in sentences. Perhaps then you can help me out with this one: what crime do you call abortion (that is: is it murder?), and what should the punishment be for women convicted of it?

        • skl

          “Perhaps then you can help me out with this one: what crime
          do you call abortion (that is: is it murder?)”

          OK. I’m here to help!

          I don’t call abortion any crime. Because for it to be a crime there would have to be a criminal statute against it, which there isn’t.

        • I’m not asking for a summary of the law’s position; I’m asking your opinion.

        • skl

          “I’m not asking for a summary of the law’s position; I’m
          asking your opinion.”

          You already know my opinion.

        • Nope. But I’m quickly losing interest in finding out.

          Was that your goal?

        • skl

          You already know my opinion.

          “Nope.”

          I’m not sure what to say to that. I mean no disrespect but I have to guess you’re either not telling the truth or you have a
          very poor short-term memory.

          I can help you with the latter. My opinion is right there in
          my post at the top of this thread: “every year about a million more unintended humans are killed in the womb.”

          And if your longer-term memory was functioning properly, you
          would have remembered the many times I’ve stated similarly on your blogs.

        • With all those words, you could’ve just filled in the blank: abortion is the crime of ___.

          Is it murder? Is it the moral equivalent of jaywalking? What?

        • skl

          “With all those words, you could’ve just
          filled in the blank: abortion is the crime of ___.”

          You already know that one, too. (Or read again three posts above.)

          “Is it murder?”

          “Murder” is a legal term, a term for the criminal statutes. (See again the above.)

          Almost seems like you’re badgering the witness here, Bob!

          But, then, we should remember those angry,
          incredulous words we’ve heard so many times in the last couple weeks – ‘This is NOT a trial, it is NOT a courtroom!’

          e.g. https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/supreme-court/courtroom-lessons-christine-blasey-ford-faces-disadvantages-kavanaugh-hearing-n912296
          )

        • You win! I have no idea what your position is and I no longer give a shit.

          Whatever your position is, I guess it’s pretty embarrassing for you to spend so much effort to say nothing.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Why are you so evasive?

          Why not just say right out what you want, and WHY.

          It’s the WHY that’s important here.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Make that “about a million UNWANTED PARASITES are eliminated from women’s bodies.”

          Otherwise, YOU have to give up cancer removal surgery, antibiotics, and liposuction, etc.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          More women die in CHILDBIRTH every year than from having abortion, by orders of magnitude.

          By your standard, EVERY pregnancy should be aborted, for women’s health.

        • lady_black

          Nobody but YOU gives a damn what you don’t like.

        • Maybe someday the powers will make my “don’t like” law. Like they did before 1973.

          The mind boggles at what you don’t get. Abortion wasn’t illegal nationwide before Roe. The states set their own laws.

        • skl

          Must be my mistake. I thought some powers in the U.S. had
          made abortion illegal before Roe.

        • Some states had made it legal, but not all.

          Think of Obergefell: some states allowed same-sex marriage and others didn’t. After Obergefell, it was legal nationwide because SCOTUS overruled those state laws.

        • skl

          Oh, so I didn’t make a mistake!
          Some powers in the U.S. had made abortion illegal before Roe. I thought so.

          But thanks.

        • TheNuszAbides

          since your words were “the powers” rather than “some powers”, and in reference to Roe “the powers” would not be referring to some (or any!) states of the union, yes, you made [yet another] mistake [or two].

          you consistently pose as someone who has a concept/topic figured out, or is uncommonly/broadly/rigorously skeptical, or is perceptive about the follies of others, or has a handle on contrarian feedback and/or cutting sarcasm and/or semantic distinctions.

          fair enough on the face of things; such can be said about almost everyone in any commentariat where controversy can be expected … but on top of as-consistently failing to actually convey that any of those postures are substantiated in your case, you never display acknowledgement of, let alone learning from, your obvious errors. if you have ever had any motive here other than ever-more-tedious shit-stirring, one hopes that some day you’ll recognize how badly you pursue it/them and make an effort to improve your habits.

        • skl

          I don’t see any “powers” mistake on my part.
          But thanks for your impassioned feedback, anyway.

        • TheNuszAbides

          don’t see

          the further exercise remains as to whether that is due to incapacity or unwillingness.

        • Greg G.

          If you don’t like abortion, should we assume you like children being unwanted?

        • I think one follows from the other.

        • skl

          You should assume I don’t like humans killing other humans because they don’t want them.

        • Greg G.

          Would you kill someone who was breaking into your house, even if you didn’t like killing the person? What if they said they were moving in with you against your will? What if they didn’t use the toilet but just pissed and shit on you? What if they were taking food from your refrigerator and cupboards. Of course the person will leave in a few months but there is a small but significant chance that the person would kill you on the way out the door, but would cause the most extreme pain you will ever feel either way? But wait, let’s make it more analogous where the guy isn’t taking food from your kitchen but directly from your bloodstream? Instead of peeing and pooping on you, he did it in you.

          If someone doesn’t want that at a particular time in their lives, it is none of your business. You should keep your nose out of her vagina.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Positions have consequences.

          Your position will create more unwanted children.

          Accept it.

    • ephemerol

      I used to be a religious person, and so I used to be socially conservative too. However, when I realized that it was not possible for christianity to be true, or for the christian god to be real, the reasoning behind my social conservatism necessarily went up in smoke.

      So, if you’re not a religious person, then why would you care whether abortion is allowed or not? And I’ll allow prohibitions on late term abortions here. No one is forcing you to have one, or be involved in paying for one. Why are you interested in forcing other people to carry their babies to term? What’s your reasoning here if it isn’t religious reasoning? Because, if you’re not a religious person, then you wouldn’t be assuming there’s something sacred about a blastocyst, like it gaining a “soul” at conception or something. If you weren’t religious, you wouldn’t think there was something “magical” about conception, such that a red line needed to be drawn specifically at that point, rather than at some other point, and you wouldn’t assume there was something necessarily “wrong” with “abortifacients.”

      For the record, I don’t “like” abortion either. Contrary to popular conservative myth, nobody “likes” abortion. Abortion is not a recreational activity. And if, in the future, society moves in the direction of solving the ancient problem that abortion is, such that abortions are no longer necessary, or even viewed as moral, then so much the better. I doubt you would find that liberals would have a problem with that. But using the abortion issue merely to slut-shame women into conforming with conventional religious gender stereotypes about sexuality isn’t even attempting to solve the abortion problem.

      So, if you’re not a religious person, then you may need to rethink your social conservatism, because if you don’t, you’re merely being manipulated by people who are religious into helping them pursue their religious ends. If you’re not a religious person, I would expect you’d find that objectionable. And I’ll allow that if you’ve recently deconverted, you might not have had a chance to to rethink it yet. But if you’re not a religious person, I’d expect you to be more concerned with solving the ancient problem that abortion is rather than just pushing towards religious ends.

      • skl

        “So, if you’re not a religious person, then why would you care whether abortion is allowed or not?”

        Because I don’t like abortion and don’t like the allowance of abortion.

        “So, if you’re not a religious person, then you may need to rethink your social conservatism…you might not have had a chance to to rethink it yet.”

        I’ve had years and years to rethink it. But in all those years I’ve never ultimately found any pro-abortion rights argument that made sense to me. And I don’t like things that don’t make sense to me.

        • ephemerol

          I know you don’t like abortion. Neither do I. Who does?

          But why don’t you like the allowance of abortion?

          Why do you think you have the right to control other people?

        • skl

          “Why do you think you have the right to control other people?”

          There are no “rights.” There are only only likes – likes protected by the powers that be.

          And I like stopping an older human from deliberately killing an innocent younger human.

        • One wonders what “human” means to you. Anything with Homo sapiens DNA?

        • Otto

          Not that I get a vote…but I would rather have Dave back than to see skl around anymore. skl is a troll.

        • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

          I finally banned him from Godless in Dixie. Is anyone here surprised he has a hard-on for Brett Kavanaugh?

        • Otto

          I am generally not in favor of banning…but when the only apparent purpose of a person commenting is to annoy I think it is justified.

        • as if that story didn’t already have enough hard-ons in it…

        • Susan

          I would rather have Dave back

          Me too. I think Dave wanted to be banned. So, I was disappointed to see that he was.

          I could be wrong (if you’re reading, Dave) but that’s my hunch.

          skl’s contributed exactly nothing ever.

          He’s just here to drop propaganda bombs and run for cover when confronted.

          He’s a troll, troll, troll.

        • Greg G.

          I wonder if he is a Russian.

        • Pofarmer

          There’s no doubt Dave wanted to be banned. I don’t have any idea what thread it was on, now, but he made it quite clear by his behavior that he wanted to get banned, or see what it would take to not get banned.

        • Pofarmer

          That’s a pretty low bar.

        • Otto

          But you think the more powerful should be able to supersede the less powerful…you have said so many times. What is less powerful than a embryo/fetus? If there are no rights than an embryo/fetus does not have any rights. Your own arguments contradict themselves, but anyone who has read your bullshit will not be surprised in the least.

        • skl

          “But you think the more powerful should be able to supersede
          the less powerful…you have said so many times.”

          No, I have not so said even one time.

          BTW, there is no “should”, either.

        • Otto

          Bullshit…you are a horrible liar.

        • Damien Priestly

          What ??? You spent a whole thread arguing how “men are bigger and stronger than women”, so men should rule.

          So spare us the fake sympathy for the powerless.

        • ildi

          If I remember another thread about objective morality correctly, skl said there is no right or wrong, there’s only the powerful imposing their will on the powerless (paraphrasing), rather than that the powerful should do so.

        • Herald Newman

          I like the idea of punching abortion protestors, and may actually like it if the people in power gave me the right to do that, but I don’t think it would make for a particularly healthy society, and I think there are far better ways to convince people not to protest at abortion clinics.

          If conservatives actually give one iota of a damn about da widdle baybees, like they say they do, they’d be doing everything they could to help prevent any unwanted pregnancies, and providing more care for women who have unwanted pregnancies. The fact is that they don’t, and actively oppose measures that have been shown to reduce unwanted pregnancies. All they seem to care about is trying to stop people from obtaining abortions by criminalizing them. Frankly, I don’t believe them when they say they care about the unborn.

        • I think there are far better ways to convince people not to protest at abortion clinics.

          My suggestion: have them read of the Trial of Bitter Water in Numbers 5:19-24.

        • skl

          “Frankly, I don’t believe them when they say they care about
          the unborn.”

          Frankly, I don’t care whether you believe them or not.

        • Herald Newman

          And you think I care about your opinion?

        • skl

          “And you think I care about your opinion?”

          Yes, enough for you to post a couple responses to my comments.

        • Kit Hadley-Day

          Please don’t mistake being irritating for being interesting,

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Introduce me to this ‘younger human’

          You are NOT allowed to use any gynecological equipment, an ultrasound, or a microscope.

          Until you can do that, it’s NOT a ‘younger human’, it’s a parasite existing at the CONSENT of its host.

        • Pofarmer

          Not liking abortion doesn’t mean a thing.

          Nobody “likes” abortions. Do you know that some of the highest rates of abortions are where they are illegal?

          http://www.patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism/2012/10/how-i-lost-faith-in-the-pro-life-movement.html

          Did you know that we know, pretty much unequivocally, how to reduce abortions? It worked in St. Louis and it’s working in Colorado.

          https://medicine.wustl.edu/news/access-to-free-birth-control-reduces-abortion-rates/

          Did you know that none of the effective ways to reduce abortions involves making them illegal?

        • Did you know that none of the effective ways to reduce abortions involves making them illegal?

          That’s a clearer conclusion than I had. Nice!

        • skl

          “Not liking abortion doesn’t mean a thing.

          Nobody “likes” abortions.”

          I’m going to take a wild guess and say
          you “dislike” abortion about the same way you “dislike” legal medical procedures to remove cancerous tumors.

        • Michael Neville

          I’m going to take a wild guess and say you dislike abortions because of your ick factor. I’ll take a further wild guess and say that because your ick factor is violated, you want to impose your personal opinion on everyone else, even those who don’t find abortions icky.

        • Dom Saunders

          Hell, even on those who “do.” Like, no one thinks the shit’s a pleasant or beautiful experience. We just understand why it happens. Because this country is fucked up on a societal level where men have free access to contraceptives but are encouraged not to use them, meanwhile the onus is still on women alone when it comes to sexual responsibility. If we want that to reduce (and pro-choice activists have always supported this), support basic access to contraceptives for women that aren’t forbiddingly expensive. Condoms are much cheaper, but that would require trusting men to practice safer sex in a society that all but encourages them to do anything but. And don’t get me started on Catholics’ and their whole role in these situations.

        • Pofarmer

          Wow. What an asshole. Why do I always regret replying to you, even when it’s in good faith?

        • skl

          “Why do I always regret replying to you…”

          You might look into considering quitting.
          Some clinics may be able to help you.

          Good night, and good luck.

        • Good point. There’s nothing that’ll put a song on my lips faster than going in for life-threatening surgery.

        • RichardSRussell

          I don’t like things that don’t make sense to me.

          That’s kind of a perverse attitude, don’t you think? Just because you don’t understand something (like, say, a potential cure for cancer) is no reason to dislike it, but you’ve just admitted that that’s your reflexive opinion on such matters. You must go thru life filled with disgust, because there are obviously many, many things that are just puzzlements to anybody, no matter who you are. I have no idea how my car works, for example, and I’d be totally lost if it were to conk out on me in the middle of nowhere, but that doesn’t mean I dislike it. I’m curious as to why that’s your own knee-jerk response to any such mysteries. Has it somehow or other served you well?

        • skl

          “I’m curious as to why that’s your own knee-jerk response to any such mysteries. Has it somehow or other served you well?”

          It’s served me very well.
          (Or maybe I should say I like how it’s served me.)

          I would assume the anti-abortion positions
          don’t make sense to you and that you don’t like them.
          Vive la difference.

        • Vive la difference.

          I like your attitude! Now let’s try to convince some of the recalcitrant people that they shouldn’t be more cautious before they insist on imposing their moral beliefs on the country.

        • Kit Hadley-Day

          I don’t care what you like, do you think that women should have bodily autonomy or not?

        • skl

          “I don’t care what you like, do you think that women should
          have bodily autonomy or not?”

          You don’t care what I think, either. (“no one finds you credible
          you don’t give a rats ass about ‘reasoning/logic/evidence’ as the positions you take show a marked lack of any of them.”)

          Bye.
          (Note: That’s a “flounce” toward you.)

        • Kit Hadley-Day

          I do care what you think, that’s why i ask the questions, the fact you wont answer them is an answer all by it’self, the fact that i don’t think you argue in good faith, or apply any sort of thinking to your responses is why i have to keep trying to chip away at the rubbish you spout to try and get to the the actual thoughts behind the bluster. So given you can’t answer the simple question i assume you don’t believe in a woman’s right to bodily autonomy, which makes you a defacto proponent of slavery, either make an argument that you can be a forced birther and not a slaver or just bite the bullet and own that shit.

        • Kit Hadley-Day

          its is a reflection of a small and uninterested mind

        • Dom Saunders

          He means he doesn’t like things that don’t make sense to him…provided said things are of no immediate benefit to him in some way. So on top of already having a perverse way of thinking, he’s self-absorbed to the extreme and extremely selfish.

        • lady_black

          Who do you think gives a fat rat’s behind about what you “like?” Of what concern is that to me? I’d really like to hear your answer.

        • skl

          Similar to how I responded to someone else here earlier…

          I don’t care whether you agree with my “likes.”
          I don’t even care whether you find me “credible” or not.
          I’m interested (and I thought this blog was interested) in the reasoning/logic/evidence for “likes.”

          This will be my one and only response to you today.

        • lady_black

          No. No one CARES what you like. That’s irrelevant in their lives. As it should be.

        • Kit Hadley-Day

          well technically you have now said it twice, please try to land the flounce out, it give it more impact, coming back to repeat the same thing you just flounced to is a bit weak.

          And for clarity

          no one cares what you like,
          no one finds you credible
          you don’t give a rats ass about ‘reasoning/logic/evidence’ as the positions you take show a marked lack of any of them

        • skl

          “well technically you have now said it twice, please try to land the flounce out, it give it more impact, coming back to repeat the same thing you just flounced to is a bit weak.”

          Well, technically No. If there was any “flounce”, it was only for the
          individual I was responding to, not for the blog.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          You tried, pathetically, to dismiss a valued and *welcome* member of this community.

          YOUR KIND can’t pull that shit any more…and it’s *delicious* schadenfreude that you’re trying, failing, and trying to NOT let people know how much it chaps your worthless derriere.

        • Kit Hadley-Day

          the call of the social conservative, i think something is icky so it must be banned. I don’t care if anyone else likes / approves / requires it, my delicate feelings are more important then anything else.

        • lady_black

          Exactly.

        • Dom Saunders

          I don’t. It’s why I blocked them a while ago. I already know what they’re going to say. Walls are more innovative in their discussions.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          I think it’s funny that ‘skl’ has blocked *me*…

          I guess I’ve got annoying him/her/it down to a science 🙂

        • Don’t like abortion? Then don’t have one. I do marvel, though, that you’re so confident in your moral position that you want it imposed on the country by law.

        • skl

          “Don’t like abortion? Then don’t have one.”

          And if you don’t like sexual abuse, then don’t sexually abuse.

          But I think we’re straying from your strict direction in
          your piece:

          “Unlike most of what I’ve written about abortion,
          in this post I will not be telling conservatives why they’re
          wrong about abortion or arguing over definitions. I want to make a simple argument that relies on non-controversial facts that should be easy to accept.”

        • Joe

          You’re conflating abortion and sexual abuse as if they are somehow of similar consequence.

        • Kit Hadley-Day

          trying to draw an equivalence between abortion and sexual abuse does kind of show what a lack of understanding you have on either topic. I am guessing the whole consent thing is a mystery to you.

        • skl

          “I am guessing the whole consent thing is a mystery to you.”

          I am guessing the whole context thing is a mystery to you.
          See, the context here is the argument that
          ‘Making something legal will reduce the incidence of
          the ill effects of that something.’

          If “sexual abuse” doesn’t work for you as a something,
          then try something else. Say “heroin usage”.
          For example – ‘Making heroin usage legal will reduce the number
          of heroin overdose deaths.’

          I question the validity of such an argument. And secondly, I
          don’t like heroin usage.

        • Aram

          actually yes, making heroin legal would reduce the number of heroin overdose deaths. Also, you don’t like heroin usage – who cares? Incidentally, are you therefore against pharmaceutical painkillers such as oxycodone? Because they’re both opioids and essentially have the same effect on the human brain.
          Apropos the heroin overdose vs legality argument:
          https://fee.org/articles/legalizing-opioids-would-dramatically-reduce-overdoses/

        • Michael Neville

          It certainly seems that skl would make things legal or illegal based on his personal likes and dislikes.

        • You’re just jealous because you don’t have skl’s access to Absolute Truth.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          😉

        • skl

          “The central question posed in this piece was whether or
          not a change to the legal status of heroin would have a
          substantial impact in reducing heroin overdoses. The
          short answer to this question would appear to be ‘no’…”

          https://idhdp.com/media/1111/add12456-1-.pdf

        • Aram

          I realize you don’t actually read what others post, as you’re convinced you’re right about everything, but real world results, à la Portugal, etc, show that overdoses do absolutely drop with legalization/decriminalization: Fact

        • skl

          I realize you don’t actually read what others post, as
          you’re convinced you’re right on this, but other studies show overdoses would not absolutely drop with legalization/decriminalization. Again:
          https://idhdp.com/media/1111/add12456-1-.pdf

          But getting back to the main topic, here’s something I haven’t
          been able to find on the internet:
          The number of women, by year, who died from complications of
          illegal abortion pre-1973 AND the number of killers who were arrested after their “patient” died.

          I figure if the official sources have unquestionably identified the individuals who died from illegal abortions, certainly the official sources would be able eventually to identify the illegal abortionists responsible, and what their prison sentence was.

          Maybe you’ll have better luck and can find this data.

        • Aram

          ‘other studies’ < 'real world'. You lose.
          as to the rest of your comment, fuck you're dense

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          For example – ‘Making heroin usage legal will reduce the number
          of heroin overdose deaths.’

          They did JUST THAT in Portugal, and guess what?

          Heroin deaths went DOWN!

          https://www.theguardian.com/news/2017/dec/05/portugals-radical-drugs-policy-is-working-why-hasnt-the-world-copied-it

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          You’re conflating different issues to attempt to impugn abortion.

          A pregnancy is a PARASITE, and as such, exists at the sufferance of its host.

          Sexual abuse involves violation of the CONSENT of the abuse VICTIM.

          A pregnancy, not having agency, canNOT be a ‘victim’.

        • Greg G.

          I’ve had years and years to rethink it. But in all those years I’ve never ultimately found any pro-abortion rights argument that made sense to me. And I don’t like things that don’t make sense to me.

          It is none of your business. If you fear that a fetus you helped create might be aborted, you should never have sex with women.

        • Dom Saunders

          Thank you. Who takes years thinking about an issue that will 9/10 have nothing to do with them? I don’t bother worrying about what other people do unless it personally affects me. It’s her choice and her life. A woman having an abortion across the street has zero relation to my own issues. That I worry about the likes of Kavanaugh at all has little to do with abortion and more about how that could possibly establish a precedent to allow conservative evangelicals to find other ways to make the lives of everyone else stuck and miserable. Being a triple minority who evangelicals don’t like, THAT affects me.

        • Damien Priestly

          So if I don’t like adoption…if it does not make sense to me and I’ve had years to think about it…

          Should I, like you, fight to ban adoption..or be reasonable enough to practice my views for myself, and not to force my views on others?

        • skl

          And if you don’t like humans being able to kill their younger humans, then don’t do it, and more importantly, turn away and allow them to do as they please.

          Me, I don’t like either. And more importantly, I’ll try to get the powers that be to not like either. For the powers that be determine which likes/dislikes become law.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          When that soi-disant ‘younger human’ isn’t a parasite sucking the literal blood of its host and can be cared for by any other human, then you’ll have a case.

    • epeeist

      As a nonreligious person

      Do you actually think anybody here believes that?

      • Michael Neville

        Why this obvious Christian keeps pretending to be nonreligious is one of those mysteries like the Trinity and the popularity of Justin Bieber.

        • Pofarmer

          The Trinity thing is easier to understand than the Bieber thing.

        • RichardSRussell

          Justin Bieber does have a good voice, and at least there’s evidence for that. As to why some people go completely gaga over it, I fall back on de gustibus non disputandum.

        • Susan

          Why this obvious Christian keeps pretending to be nonreligious

          I’m reminded of Kodie’s plea.

          Send us an honest christian.

          I really miss Kodie.

        • Michael Neville

          I miss her too. I hope she’ll come back soon.

      • skl

        As a nonreligious person…

        “Do you actually think anybody here believes that?”

        I don’t care whether you believe it or not.

        I don’t even care whether you find me “credible” or not.

        I’m interested (and I thought this blog was interested) in the reasoning/logic/evidence for belief/disbelief.

        • epeeist

          I don’t care whether you believe it or not.

          I presume you know the duck test – “If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and walks like a duck, it’s a duck”.

          Your behaviour here makes you look like a Catholic manqué.

          I’m interested (and I thought this blog was interested) in the reasoning/logic/evidence for belief/disbelief.

          Strange, you have never shown this interest before or actually presented anything that looks like reasoning, logic or evidence.

        • skl

          Bye.

        • Leaving so soon? No, don’t go! There’s so much we haven’t yet learned from you!

          I’m kidding of course (and I just wish your “Bye” was addressed to all of us …)

        • Kit Hadley-Day

          his / her (though given the writhing style and attitude most likely his) stamina is seriously flagging, lets hope he sticks the flounce out

        • I’ll promise a 9.9 if it’ll do any good.

        • epeeist

          Well as my mother was wont to say, “Everyone brings joy to this place, some when they arrive and some when they leave.”

          I rather think you are in the latter category – bye

        • Dom Saunders
        • Otto

          I had a sign like that on my door way back when.

          “Everyone here brings happiness. Some by coming in, others by leaving”.

        • Joe

          I’m interested (and I thought this blog was interested) in the reasoning/logic/evidence for belief/disbelief.

          Out of the three questionable statements you made in your post, this has to be the biggest whopper of them all.

        • Rudy R

          If you don’t care, why pester this group with all your nonsense? Isn’t there other blogs where you can practice your mental masturbation?

    • lady_black

      All of the contraceptive pills work by suppressing ovulation. If the woman ovulates, and an ovum is fertilized, that zygote has the same chance of becoming a pregnancy as it would if she didn’t take oral contraception. That chance is NOT 100%, with or without oral contraception.

    • cowalker

      “1. Illegal abortion just means that abortions will be done illegally”

      “And illegal sexual abuse just means that sexual abuse will be done illegally.

      “Same for illegal murder/robbery/pollution/etc.”

      So, I assume you are not one of the ridiculous (or disingenuous) opponents of abortion who deny pregnant women agency. You would require that the pregnant woman who hires someone to perform an abortion (including supplying drugs to induce an early abortion) be punished by the justice system. What do you suggest? Just remember that it might turn out that a sister, daughter or ex-significant-other sought this health care at some point.

    • Damien Priestly

      What’s wrong with that? Abortions are standard practice over much of the world. You don’t get to define what is in the womb for everybody else.

      Nobody has to have an abortion…that solves the problem — except for people who need to tell women what to do, like you,..Who regularly justifies the “Men are are Stronger” argument for sexism.

  • skl
  • Sophotroph

    Once again, as we all know by now, the forced-birthers do not care about abortion and never did.

    They care about controlling women, and frankly, about controlling everyone else too.

    Taking away freedoms we care about is their way of trying to get around the pesky fact that their religion is optional, and will be so until it is extinct.

  • Pennybird

    “Conservatives, do you want to do something more concrete than just voting for the anti-abortion candidate?”

    In a word, no. They have proven over and over again they couldn’t care less about people, only controlling some of us. There are some hungry children in a desert tent right now wondering where their parents are who are saying the exact same thing.

    • Greg G.

      Last year, they were worried about women being attacked in a public restroom. This year, they proved they wouldn’t have believed them if they were.

      • You win the internet with that one.

        • Pofarmer

          I wonder how skl would respond to the fertility clinic scenario, but I don’t care enough to interact enough to ask, and maybe he/she is gone anyway.

        • I find that the more simple, direct, and compelling an argument is, the likelier they are to tap dance away from it.

          I get that problem with one of my favorites, “I say ‘a newborn baby is a person, but the single cell 9 months earlier wasn’t,’ but if you disagree with ‘person,’ give me a better word.”

        • Pofarmer

          I replied the other day that I used that on facebook. The problem with the pro life movement is that a fertilized egg is not a baby. In the fertility clinic scenario, the respondent said that Frozen Embryo’s were, indeed, Frozen little babies. All right, you can’t freeze babies. That ought to be your first clue right there that something is wrong.

        • Don’t they then just respond that your problem is that you have a constrained definition of “baby”?

        • Pofarmer

          They pretty much just clam up.

        • Pennybird

          It’s all a moot point what you call it. It has never been about the baby.

        • Agreed, though I think you’re supposed to have the decorum to not mention that (at least within “pro-life” circles).

        • Pennybird

          They’re masters of self-deception.

      • Rudy R

        It depends on who does the attacking. Trump and Kavanaugh…..nuff said.

  • Bob Jase

    Look, if it doesn’t slut shame women then conservative Christians want nothing to do with it.

  • Kevin K

    They don’t care. Seriously. They don’t care about any of that. It’s the demon Rowe v Wade and nothing else will do.

    • lady_black

      It’s Roe. Not “Row” and not “Rowe.” Jane Roe is a pseudonym used by the plaintiff in the lawsuit, because Jane Doe was taken by a companion case that was joined with the case of Jane Roe. Jane Doe or John Doe is used legally to designate an unidentified woman or man, such as an unidentified body being called a John Doe.

      • RichardSRussell

        Thanks for the clarification. It underlines that “row vs. wade” is not a disagreement over how to cross the river.

    • You’re probably right. I was hoping to highlight the difference between what they’re nominally going for (Roe) and what their goal should actually be (unintended pregnancies). I guess cognitive dissonance knows no bounds.

  • skl

    Barring some crazy act of god/gods, Kavanaugh’s confirmation
    looks to be a sure thing. Today Senators Joe Manchin and Susan Collins gave the thumbs up.

    In case you missed it, check out the speech Senator Collins
    gave today. She’s pro-choice. But that was one hell of a great speech!

    • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

      Why am I not surprised that a lying shitstain of a human being is supporting another lying shitstain of a human being for the Supreme Court.

      Congratulations. Your prayers to Republican Jesus have been answered (yeah, yeah, I know, you’re “not religious” — yeah, right). Now Trump can pardon himself without anyone stopping him, and more women will die after Roe v. Wade is repealed.

      And on “block” you go.

      • skl

        “And on “block” you go.”

        That’s your choice. I won’t mind.

        What I find troubling, though, is blog authors/moderators banning
        commenters. You know, the way you did to me today.

        And what a horrific transgression I was banned for!

        @Anthrotheist writes “It has seemed to me lately that the
        values and behaviors of conservatives in America have reflected one thing more than any other: desperation.”

        And all I posted in response (before you deleted my post and banned me) was

        ‘Desperation, like accusing without corroboration the most
        qualified jurist in America of being a lying serial gang rapist, blackout
        drunk, and oh so lacking in proper judicial temperament Appellate Court judge.’

        All quite true.

        I guess that was the problem.

        • And on “block” you go.”
          That’s your choice. I won’t mind.

          God knows, you’ve certainly threatened that enough.

          What I find troubling, though, is blog authors/moderators banning
          commenters. You know, the way you did to me today.

          I’m the one who bans people, and I haven’t banned you, Mr. Sensitive.

          Individual commenters can block other commenters with “Block User” with the top-right dropdown arrow.

        • skl

          “God knows, you’ve certainly threatened that enough.”

          I have no idea what that means.

          “I’m the one who bans people, and I haven’t banned you…”

          Yes, I know that, and appreciate that.
          But I wasn’t speaking to you, I was speaking to Mr. Thought2Much.
          He banned me on another blog – “Godless in Dixie.”

        • And did you deserve it? Given your performance here, I’m wondering if you have any grounds for complaint.

        • Jim Dailey

          This seems to tie in nicely with our discussion of what constitutes a “banning” offense.

          It seems to me that commenters can indeed be trolls without uttering a single vulgarity.

          Clint W is the guy who writes Godless in Dixie? Why on earth doesn’t he identify himself by his name in comment boxes?

        • Greg G.

          Clint W is the guy who writes Godless in Dixie?

          He is not.

          A blog can have multiple authors and multiple moderators. They need not be the same people.

          Moderators of a blog have a black rectangle with “Mod” in it next to their name.

        • TheNuszAbides

          black rectangle

          it’s somewhere between slate and charcoal for me. also, i never do this via phone.

        • Otto

          It seems to me that commenters can indeed be trolls without uttering a single vulgarity.

          It seems to me that no one has argued otherwise.

        • Jim Dailey

          So are you pro-ban on trolls or anti-ban on trolls?

        • Are you pro-time wasters or anti-time wasters?

        • Jim Dailey

          I know, I know. Your blog, your rules. Which is fair. Just don’t bellyache that you got banned by Armstrong for violating his unwritten rules, when you apparently support unwritten rules for other bloggers.

        • ildi

          Maybe in skl’s case it’s doing them a favor; they have compared commenting on atheist blogs to being in hell, but they can’t seem to save themselves from the torture, poor thing.

        • Susan

          Just don’t bellyache that you got banned by Armstrong for violating his unwritten rules

          No one thinks about Armstrong until you bring him up.

          Do you have anything to say about the article Jim, or are you just here to clickbait?

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          clickbait, of course.

        • Ignorant Amos

          A special kind of cretin you are…wise ta fuck up.

        • Otto

          Considering Dave’s tendency to ban for simply taking a position contrary to his I think you would need to define troll.

          You could first explain what Grimlock did to get banned and maybe that would help us understand what counts as poor behavior.

        • Jim Dailey

          Actually Dave wrote a piece on it. Basically Grimlock went on some other site and commented that he was indeed trolling Armstrong.

        • And if “trolling Armstrong” meant making decent, thoughtful comments, the problem remains.

        • Otto

          Oh whatever…not that I don’t think Dave would ban someone for something said elsewhere, that part I believe because Dave is a petty asshole, but Grimlocks interactions with Dave was not troll behavior, you know that and you are just shilling for Dave.

          (Are you able to think on your own or do you have to get Dave’s approval before you comment?)

          Look, the bottom line is Dave has lost all credibility here. I seriously don’t give a shit what Dave thinks about anything, I don’t think Bob or most anyone else here does either. And why would we? Dave isn’t interested in anything resembling an honest conversation, he just wants to score points and be a bully.

        • Grimlock

          Jim. You disappoint me.

          I had a look over at Armstrong blog, and I assume you’re referring to this comment, quoted in the spoiler below.

          Let me first make something abundantly clear. I made no comment saying that I was trolling Armstrong’s blog. Primarily because I wasn’t trolling. Indeed, the comment by Armstrong only cites one comment that I can see from before I got banned, which doesn’t support your assertion. (Basically, I’m inclined to think that you might be misrepresenting Armstrong’s comment.)

          You are lying about me. Stop doing that, it makes you look like an asshat.

          a day ago
          Once I banned Bob (which I meticulously explained in a post, documenting the frenzy against me from his fan club):

          Hysterical Frenzy vs. Me on Atheist Seidensticker’s Blog

          http://www.patheos.com/blog

          Grimlock started crapping his pants, showing his true colors (which I was stating to suspect even before that). If a person shows that they are hostile and not sincerely interested in dialogue they’re gone. I wrote:

          “Note especially one “Grimlock.” He tried to put up a show of objectivity and desire for sincere dialogue on my site, but as we see, he was at the same time having a field day running me down behind my back. I could pretty much see this coming in the last few days, but as a hopeless idealist, I held out hope till the end. Believing the best of people almost in the face of all evidence to the contrary is a great fault of mine.”

          Here are some of his comments about me:

          “Unfortunately, I am now banned . . ., so I, for one, won’t be following up that discussion there. Oh well. Three months before I got banned! Is that some sort of record? I should get a medal.”

          [Note how I dialogued with him for three months — by his own report — ; yet I supposedly ban everyone I have the slightest disagreement with]

          “I’d say that religion gives us knowledge in one sense. You know DnD, right? With made-up rules and magic systems and whatnot? Religion gives us that kind of knowledge. The knowledge of made-up rules. . . . Well, he just started blustering and ignoring me when I brought up the distinction between an internalist and externalist account of properly basic knowledge. So I’m pretty sure he’s simply quoting stuff without actually understanding it. . . . Shoot, you were right. I got banned. Apparently, I made him look like a hypocrite when I quoted his own words at him. Clearly a ban-able offense.”

          “Unfortunately, I stepped on a landmine when I (once again) quoted his own words at him and made him look like a hypocrite. Clearly, that’s not acceptable behaviour on his blog. Oh well. . . . I find it to be an excellent illustration of how apologetics at its core is all about reconciling believers with their difficulties, and not about investigating the truth claims of, say, Christianity.”

          He wrote in comments two months ago:

          “Oh, and let me make something clear. I have no wish to be cited on your site. I find your editing practices to be abysmal and severely biased. If you do take quotes from me here, you do so expressly against my wish. I doubt this will stop you. But I do challenge you to actually discuss this somewhere you don’t have the power to ban and delete comments if they don’t serve your “purpose”. ”

          https://disqus.com/home/dis

          And again:

          “It’s interesting to note that you complain about how I make you look like a hypocrite. If quoting your own words at you makes you look like a hypocrite, who, precisely, is the problem?”

          https://disqus.com/home/dis

          And before I banned him, talking about me with ol’ “flee for the hills” Bob:

          “Somewhat off-topic, but I read your recent exchange with Armstrong on slavery, and I can’t comment there, as he locked the comments. It was a thoroughly enjoyable read, and I particularly liked your suggestion that he get a trusted friend to summarize his behaviour. That gave me a good laugh.”

          https://disqus.com/home/dis

          He’a clearly not interested in good-natured, amiable discussion. And that is bannable, because I don’t want the environment I’ve worked hard for 22 years to create in my venues (for open-minded, friendly discussion) to be polluted by those who have a bug up their butt.

          Before he started acting like an ass, we had engaged in five lengthy dialogues, which are listed under his name on my Atheism web page:

          http://www.patheos.com/blog

          This is a case-in-point. If I am supposedly so terrifically afraid of any opposing view, why in the world do I KEEP up such dialogues? Why wouldn’t I simply delete them? Instead, I allow opponents of mine — even bitter ones — to have their words posted on my site. But if they can’t behave, then they lose their privilege to comment on my site (it’s not a right).

          There is a lot to take issue with in this comment. However, as Armstrong can’t respond to me here, I won’t do so. (Do unto others, etc.) Instead, I’ll make it easy for you, Jim. Here are three straightforward questions for you.

          1) Is there anything stated in the quotes by me there that is false? If yes, be specific.
          2) Were any of my comments there made with the expectation that Armstrong would not see them, or be unable to respond directly where they were made? If yes, be specific.
          3) Only one of the quotes by me were made before I got banned. Does it express a sentiment that I did not share with Armstrong directly to his face on his blog? Here’s a hint.

          Will you answer these questions? I think not. Because the answers make your position look like shit.

          Furthermore, consider the following comment you made in another thread here:

          Dave bans you when you either start posting profanity laced vitriol or if you refuse to stay on topic in the discussion. I have seen the first happen frequently, and the second only once.

          Yet, you had to ask Armstrong why I got banned. Clearly this assertion of yours that I quote was unfounded.

          As a final note, I’ll encourage you to read the final exchange I had over there, in the comments section of the following post: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/davearmstrong/2018/08/am-i-the-christian-equivalent-of-the-angry-atheist.html

          Am I being vitriolic, or straying from the topic? If you think so, be specific.

          Grim

        • Otto

          I could pretty much see this coming in the last few days, but as a hopeless idealist, I held out hope till the end. Believing the best of people almost in the face of all evidence to the contrary is a great fault of mine.

          Dave’s humblebrags are absolutely EPIC! What a martyr! And all for the sake of Jesus…my I am sure he will be rewarded for such self-sacrifice. What a guy…how does he do it and maintain such restraint? I mean the burden would overwhelm the average man.

        • TheNuszAbides

          hey, if a Favored Angel can be overcome by temptations of self-importance, what are the odds that a puny mortal like Dave … wait, what am I saying? there are no puny mortals like Dave.

        • Otto

          Dave isn’t self important, he is just way more important than any mortal person can comprehend. /s

        • It’s bizarre that this is really a topic that needs (re-re-)hashing out, but I’m glad that you laid out the issue so clearly. It’s likely a vain hope, but perhaps this will satisfy Jim Dailey’s curiosity and he’ll shut the hell up about his favorite Catholic blogger.

        • Otto

          This might help to understand.

          Here are 8 signs of a narcissist:
          They exaggerate their achievements and talents. …
          They are master manipulators. …
          They don’t recognize or accept your feelings. …
          They are arrogant. …
          They require constant admiration and adoration. …
          They take advantage of others. …
          They are envious of others. …
          They believe they are superior.

        • Jim Dailey

          I asked Armstrong because I know he keeps meticulous records.
          His response to me provided the link to the article he wrote about the atheist frenzy that arose when he banned Bob.
          In that article, there are direct quotes from you, chortling along with various other atheists about annoying Dave with your posts.
          So, I misstated Dave’s policy. Now I am a liar and an asshat? Nice.

        • Grimlock

          It’s really quite simple. Your lies make you a liar, and your behavior makes you look like an asshat. You want to claim I was trolling? Back it up, or shut up.

          I’m uncertain what your apparent lack of reading comprehension makes you. But it sure doesn’t make you look good. (Interesting example: you miss the distinction between being an asshat and doing something that makes you look like one.)

          Beyond that, I’ll simply note your usual utter lack of specificity in your claims about me, and your obvious inability or unwillingness to answer the straightforward questions I asked in my previous comment.

        • Jim Dailey

          Ok. Very interesting.

        • Can you think of anything more interesting to talk about than how everyone is mean to Dave Armstrong? Or are you on board with all of the posts here?

        • Jim Dailey

          As to the interactions with Dave, I am not “on board” (in agreement) but am quite clear on how people feel about him.

          I’m kind of done here. I thought it might be useful to point out that i thought there was rich fodder for discussion between you and Dave. However, you refuse to engage for whatever reason.

        • Otto

          However, you refuse to engage for whatever reason.

          I am baffled at you and Dave’s lack of self-awareness and your level of delusion.

        • Yep, you’ve nailed it–“for whatever reason.”

          “Whatever reason” has been explained to you.

          I’m kind of done here.

          Good to hear. But if you know any of your Christian friends who want to actually, y’know, discuss some apologetics issues, about which there are new posts weekly, have them drop by. For some reason, you’ve had no interest.

        • Susan

          rich fodder for discussion

          You need to get out more.

          you refuse to engage for whatever reason.

          Bob is banned. He can’t engage.

          It’s insane to ban someone and then to accuse them of running away.

          Anything else?

          Because this is not just insane.

          It’s getting really, really boring.

        • Michael Neville

          It’s kind of hard for Bob to discuss anything with Dave when Dave so gleefully banned Bob. That means that Bob can’t post on Dave’s blog. I mention this effect of banning so you can understand why Bob isn’t discussing things with Dave, you don’t seem to have quite grasped this point. It’s not that Bob won’t have a discussion with Dave, it’s that Dave has made it impossible.

        • Pofarmer

          It’s just, kinda, wow, with this one.

        • Ignorant Amos

          I’m kind of done here.

          Thank fuck says I…and then damn it, ya weren’t.

        • Grimlock

          I’m glad you found it interesting.

          Here’s something that I find interesting. Consider these three scenarios:

          1) A says critizices B somewhere there is a reasonable expectation that B will see it, and where B is able to respond directly.
          2) A critizices B somewhere there is a reasonable expectation that B will see it, and where B is unable to respond directly.
          3) A critizices B somewhere there is not a reasonable expectation that B will see it, and where B is unable to respond directly.

          These are sorted in increasing order of badness. (Though I’m sure some will disagree with the order of 2 and 3.) You can, at best, make the case that I did (1).

          But if you find this behavior worthy of criticism, what do you then think of someone who does (2) or (3), such as… Oh, I dunno, yourself?

          This apparent double standard makes it hard to take your criticisms seriously.

        • Jim Dailey

          That is interesting.

          I take it you are upset about my reference to your discussion with Clement Agonistes?

        • Grimlock

          I’m glad you also find it interesting. I hope it’ll make you modify your behaviour to some extent.

          I take it you are upset about my reference to your discussion with Clement Agonistes?

          Oh, that. No, that’s not what I had in mind. I mean, you’re being somewhat inaccurate, but you’re not precisely criticizing me. And I’m not upset, I’m explaining why I’m dismissive of your criticizms. I’d recommend that you be careful with attributing emotions to people you interact with online – both because it’s difficult to get it right, and because it’s effectively an ad hominem to dodge an argument or inconvenient issue.

        • Jim Dailey

          So you tell me I act like an asshat, call me a liar, and tell me I’m a gossip.

          You then accuse me of making ad hominem attacks because I ask if something I said made you upset?

          You are hilarious!

        • Find something useful to talk about.

        • Jim Dailey

          Something like mustard seeds? Will do!

        • Michael Neville

          Tell me, just as a matter of curiosity, why are you trolling this blog? Does it make your groin feel all warm and cozy? Do you think it annoys us? Or is it just something to pass the time while you dredge up some interesting conversation from the depths of your mind?

        • My guess is that he wants to use the big boy words and pretend he’s sitting at the adult table, even though he has no idea what’s going on. He throws his food around the table just to get attention, since he can’t do it by saying anything interesting.

        • Seriously, do you have anything useful to bring to the discussion? Or do you just want to whine about how atheists are mean?

        • Ignorant Amos

          Ya mean ya don’t already know the answer to both those questions….pfffft!

          Oh I get it…yer being rhetorical.

        • When the clock is approaching midnight, I like to make clear the path to intellectual freedom. But, yeah, no one takes it.

        • Otto

          Any chance you are going to answer his questions or are you just trolling at this point?

        • Clint W. (Thought2Much)

          At this point? At this point?

          AH-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA!!!!

          [[snort]]

          HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA!!!!

        • Grimlock

          You’re dodging. Let’s keep in mind some things you conveniently decided to skip.

          You allege that I was trolling, and indeed assert that I admit to trolling:

          Basically Grimlock went on some other site and commented that he was indeed trolling Armstrong.

          When confronted with this falsehood, do you try to back it up with specific examples? Do you perhaps retract your blatant falsehood? Of course not.

          How about you making it out to be oh so horrible when Armstrong is critiziced here by me (which can not be reasonably be called behind his back – I can explain if you’ve missed out on why), when you engage in similar, but worse behavior? Do you meaningfully engage with this, or perhaps admit to have a blatant double standard? No, you evade, and complain about being called a gossip.

          Do you seriously not see how you are behaving? You consistently evade rather than defend your position, and apply blatant double standards.

        • Otto

          You are missing the point that the reason Dave was annoyed was because Grimlock showed Dave was dishonest and a hypocrite using Dave’s own words. That is not a Grimlock problem, that is a Dave problem.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Armstrong may KEEP ‘meticulous’ records…but he POSTS whatever he thinks will make him look good.

          So Davie-poo, why don’t you have enough courage of your convictions to stop lying? Yes, that’s a direct accusation.

        • Pofarmer

          he was at the same time having a field day running me down behind my back.

          That’s rich.

        • Ignorant Amos

          You are lying about me. Stop doing that, it makes you look like an asshat.

          Look like an asshat? Hmmmmm!

        • Susan

          Grimlock went on some other site and commented that he was indeed trolling Armstrong.

          No, he did not.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Sounds to me like you’re fishing for clicks for Dave’s worthless page.

          If he had anything interesting to say, you’d be over there, not pissing in the punch bowl here.

        • Dom Saunders

          That’s Neil Carter, not Clint. And when Carter does respond, he does use his name.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Well am sure the Clint W is the bit in brackets on his moniker.

          I believe Clint is a moderator at GiD…giving him banhammer rights.

        • skl

          No.

        • I appreciate your comprehensive self-reflection.