Two Sizes Too Small: For What Social Errors Will History Condemn Us?

Two Sizes Too Small: For What Social Errors Will History Condemn Us? April 2, 2019

Social conventions change. Think of examples where we look back on Western society past and shake our heads at how morally wrong they were. Slavery. Chopping off hands for stealing. Debtor’s prison. Workhouses. Slow public executions. Voting rights given to landowners only.

But does it end there?

A group of freethinking friends saw the James Randi biopic “Honest Liar,” and we were chatting afterwards. One person raised this question about how morality has changed and continues to do so. Let’s not imagine that we’ve got it all figured out. Though we’d like to think otherwise, our descendants will look back on our society and find their own examples of moral error.

So here’s the question (feel free to participate in the comments): What social attitude changes will happen this century such that future Americans will look back on us with bemusement or horror?

Prediction 1: sex!

Let me get you started with examples from our conversation. Paul had raised the question, and he predicted the widespread acceptance of both polyamory (having multiple romantic or sexual partners at a time) and polygamy (marriage with more than two partners) and that today’s views will seem prudish and backwards.

Yes, he’s saying that the conservatives’ prediction is right: from mixed-race marriage comes same-sex marriage, and that opens the floodgates to even more redefinition. (What they forget is that this isn’t new, since marriage has always been in flux.)

It’s interesting to imagine this evolution. In the past, we had one man and one woman, same race, the bride is treated like property and comes with a dowry, and with few restrictions on the bride. We’ve gotten past the racial restriction and are moving past the gender restriction, and Paul imagined loosening up the number restriction.

But note that this isn’t a Sexual Revolution free-for-all. There are new rules, and now the bride must be old enough, must consent, and must not be a close relative. Divorce is now allowed, marital rape is forbidden, both parties are legally equal, and so on.

Prediction 2: climate change

Scot anticipated that both policy makers and ordinary voters will universally accept human-caused climate change. People will be shocked and outraged that we had the evidence for climate change but fiddled while Rome burned. He illustrated it by imagining members of our future society shocked that someone would drive a 3000-pound car for fifteen minutes, spewing out carbon dioxide all the way, just to deliver a pizza.

Prediction 3: animal rights

My proposal was that synthetic meat will be widely available, and future society will look back on us with horror that we raised animals solely to be killed, butchered, and eaten. Today, we are outraged at the idea of clubbing baby seals for fur and at bays red with blood from Japanese dolphin kills, and our future selves will have the same revulsion at our killing cows for cheeseburgers.

Given the enormous environmental impact of livestock, they will also wonder why the financial argument wasn’t enough of a driver even if the moral one wasn’t.

Your turn

Which practice or attitude, customary today, will our descendants look back on with surprise or shock? Maybe they will be outraged that we had capital punishment or that euthanasia was illegal. Maybe they will shake their heads thinking back on when abortion was legal. Maybe they will laugh at our prudishness about sex on television but be disgusted at our appetite for violence. Maybe they will marvel that we let every bonehead vote for no better reason than that they were a citizen, with complete disregard to understanding of the issues and mental capability.

It doesn’t have to be a positive prediction—you might hate it but see it as inevitable anyway.

What do you think?

I think hedonism is one of the most
morally defensible philosophies.
If the purpose of life is pleasure,
it becomes hard to justify suffering.
— commenter smrnda

.

(This is an update of a post that originally appeared 3/26/15.)

Image from Marlon Cureg, CC license

.


Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


TRENDING AT PATHEOS Nonreligious
What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Doubting Thomas

    I’m not so sure about the polyamorous future. It seems that most people are hard wired to prefer a partner that is monogamous. Polyamory, while morally acceptable, seems to go against what most people expect out of a relationship and I’m guessing that this preference is more related to evolution than culture and will be difficult to change through a cultural shift.

    I also think that while future generations will look back at our dietary habits with disgust, it will be more about factory farming than raising animals for food in general. I do say this with the bias of someone who has raised many animals for food.

      • Doubting Thomas

        Yup, and listened to the Harris podcast. I think affordable synthetic meat would cause a drastic and welcomed change in our agricultural landscape. I also think there would still be small numbers of farmers raising the real thing for the pleasure of it and for people who rejected synthetic meats for whatever reason.

      • WCB

        Synthetic meats! Finally, I can eat a kitten burger without the guilt.

    • epicurus

      I’m in a similar boat – grew up on a farm, have raised and killed animals and eat meat, but am very distressed about the rise of the factory farm and it’s poor treatment of animals in the name of increasing profits. Also the nighmarish torture chambers that are university and research animal experimentation labs.

      • Doubting Thomas

        I have raised backyard chickens and processed them myself (I even built a snazzy homemade plucker). I also have an uncle who has an industrial sized egg house. It was eye opening walking through as a child. But even after seeing the horrors of industrial eggs, it’s still so easy to distance myself from the reality of it every time I pick up a dozen eggs in the grocery store. Out of sight, out of mind, I guess.

        • Ignorant Amos

          There is also the financial issue to be considered. If the world population is going to grow, then those folk that are poorest and have little choice, will drive the continuation of factory farming.

        • Doubting Thomas

          I guess that would depend on how cheaply synthetic meat could be produced.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Soylent Green???….perhaps not…although Soylent is a reality meal replacement today.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soylent_(meal_replacement)

        • kenofken

          Sometimes problems will solve themselves if you just get out of the way. Soylent green could solve the worlds hunger problems and its refugee problems in one shot!

          Don’t let Trump hear that suggestion. On the other hand he probably wouldn’t even wait for the technology to develop. He’d cook up those poor Central Americans as is and serve them up Orc style…

        • ThaneOfDrones

          I doubt the possibilities of synthetic meat. The amazing part of the steer is its digestive system that turns low grade grasses into tasty tasty meat.

        • Ain’t God marvelous.

        • Doubting Thomas

          Would a brainless yet otherwise fully functional cow count as synthetic meat? We could have rows of them constantly pumped full of grass slurry with fertilized collectors inserted in the other end. It doesn’t sound appealing, but neither are high density feed yards.

        • I look for “ethically raised” or “free range” on the egg carton, but there’s much room for improvement in that.

        • Doubting Thomas

          I get a lot of my eggs from my in-laws who have a yard full of pampered birds. The problem is that they let their birds die of old age and geriatric chickens, as most of their birds are now, aren’t very productive in the egg laying department.

          I’ve also taken to eating lots of canned fish. The thought of it turns most people off, but there are some absolutely delicious sardines, bristling, and herring out there if you get the right ones.

        • Greg G.

          Putting eggs in cartons means they are no longer free range.

        • Fair point, but it’s just silly having eggs roam about on the range. They’re just going to get stepped on.

        • Ignorant Amos

          There was a documentary on supermarket food I watched recently. The “free range” chickens breed for food are four times more expensive, the chickens live twice as long, 2 months against 1 month, and that life isn’t all that for the first month of the “free range” chickens either. Meaning at the end of the day, the first month for both is similar.

    • Grimlock

      It seems that most people are hard wired to prefer a partner that is monogamous. Polyamory, while morally acceptable, seems to go against what most people expect out of a relationship and I’m guessing that this preference is more related to evolution than culture and will be difficult to change through a cultural shift.

      Isn’t this equally true for homosexuality, though? And that – fortunately – ain’t been enough to stop gay marriage. (Well. In some countries.)

      • Doubting Thomas

        Isn’t this equally true for homosexuality, though?

        It’s not true for the homosexuals.

        I’m saying that polyamory won’t be a popular practice because most people are hardwired for monogamy instead of it simply being a cultural practice.

        But, yes, in that way polyamory is similar to homosexuality. Most people are hardwired to be straight and I don’t think that will change with a cultural shift. What has and will hopefully continue to change is the cultural acceptance of practices like homosexuality and polyamory.

        • kenofken

          I would agree, as someone who is poly myself. I don’t see it ever becoming the default mode of partnership, and nor do I see it as any kind of goal to get more people to try or adopt it. There is, however, a significant minority of the population who are simply not wired at all for monogamy. What I think is happening, and I hope will continue to happen, is that changing attitudes will allow those folks to stop living a lie and to negotiate ethical consensual and open relationships without legal or social oprobrium.

        • a significant minority of the population who are simply not wired at all for monogamy.

          Since every married person must imagine what a relationship with that nice-looking person would be like, once in a while, perhaps polyamory/monogamyh is a spectrum along with homo-/heterosexuality.

        • Doubting Thomas

          I think lots of (most?) people probably aren’t wired to be monogamous. But I do think that most people are wired to desire that their partner is.

  • Yes, death penalty will probably be on the list, with most of our judicial and jail systems following suit – so much emphasis on punishment (even when the offence is a trivial one), and so little on prevention and rehabilitation.

    • The death penalty is now off the table in WA state, though I did hear one positive thing for it: it can be used as a bargaining chip. Apparently, some serial killers have taken the option of life imprisonment instead of death in return for showing where all the bodies are. That’s given closer to victims’ families. In general, though, I am anti-death penalty.

      • Absolutely – also, I’ll never blame heart-broken families asking for it.

        That said maybe death penalty will be meted out much more carefully than it is today – too many mentally ill or otherwise unfit people have been sentenced to death so far, not to mention the always-present risk of an irreparable mistake.

      • Ignorant Amos

        Am split on it.

        If technology can be developed with a 100% record in getting the guilty perp, then it must be a consideration in a world where terrorists cut the heads of innocent people on camera…or for the likes of this bastard…

        Two-week-old baby in intensive care at Belfast hospital – man charged with rape

        https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/twoweekold-baby-in-intensive-care-at-belfast-hospital-man-charged-with-rape-37388210.html

        There is just no place in society for such human excrement and resources to keep them incarcerated are, or certainly will be, finite.

        • Doubting Thomas

          I agree to some extent, but we have to keep in mind the lack of libertarian free will and take that into account. That was the argument that changed my mind on the death penalty.

          We wouldn’t sentence the mentally ill or disabled to death because of our understanding of the limits of their self control. I think those limits should be understood to be applicable to everybody.

        • Ignorant Amos

          I’m not sure being disabled counts, certainly the mentally ill, but then I’ve seen the argument that anyone who murders another human being has some sort of mental defect. Child abusers in particular. That puts us on a slippery slope going forward. I guess this is where the not yet available technology could play a role.

          It’s hot potato. I was at one time pro-capital punishment. I’m not now. Because there isn’t a more harrowing feeling than thought of an innocent person going to the mixer in the full knowledge they didn’t do it. One, is one too many.

        • Doubting Thomas

          I agree that the possibility of innocent people being put to death should be a huge mark against the death penalty.

          But I think even in a hypothetical situation where we know with 100% certainty that a “sane” person was guilty of murder, even mass murder, that our understanding of the human mental process should remove the idea of punitive justice. The sane can’t “choose” their thoughts any more than the mentally ill can, at least in a libertarian sense. So it seems weird to punish someone for something they had no choice in.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Am not sure am on board with the concept DT, I’ll need to go and read some stuff on it and see if I can get a grip of the idea. My homework has been set, thanks, though not tonight, there’s a couple of bottles of red with my name on them and it’s two minutes past wine’o’clock already and she that must be obeyed is giving me the sad eye.

        • Doubting Thomas

          Cheers. And let me know if you find anything interesting.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          It would be crueler to such to put them in SuperMax solitary confinement (23 hours a day alone in a cell, and can even be allowed out to exercise only alone, not even a guard to associate with).

          Such folk take to abusing *themselves*, because they can’t give up abusing.

      • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

        For the knowledge of where the vicitim(s) bodies are, I’d almost rather put the perp into an fMRI and ask questions about victim locations while watching brain states for truth / falsity.

        Apparently at present that’s pretty much impossible to beat.

        It blows the 5th Amendment out of the water, though.

    • eric

      I am frankly amazed that we don’t use GPS-tracked anklets far more than we do (i.e. as a substitute for jail time). AIUI successful deterrence and lack of recividism is very poorly correlated to the severity of a punishment, but is highly correlated with ones’ chance of being caught. So to reduce crime, you make it very clear to offenders that reoffending has a near-100% guarantee of getting them caught because we’ll know exactly where they were when the next crime is committed.

      • Ignorant Amos

        Exploding anklets….or collars….would be more efficient….just having a bit of a wheeze.

        • NS Alito

          Flashback to Snake Plissken in Escape from New York.

      • I think it has to do with our expectations about jail time: as a society, we feel (or at least we’re told most offenders need something more than surveillance – i.e. self-analysis and rehabilitation.

        Also, most victims and or their families feel better if they see their abuser well afar and concealed.

  • He illustrated it by imagining members of our future society shocked that someone would drive a 3000-pound car for fifteen minutes, spewing out carbon dioxide all the way, just to deliver a pizza.

    On a related note, I sincerely hope that future generations will look at a consumption driven society with disdain! How many of our finite resources have we squandered on completely frivolous shit? It’s not just the climate impact of our wastefulness, but the fact that many of these resources will never be available for future generations. “Sorry kid, you should have been born in my generation, while the party was still going.”

    The fact is that the vast majority of us don’t really care, and I sincerely hope that changes sooner rather than later. I’d really like to see the day that wasteful people are looked at as social pariahs.

  • LastManOnEarth

    Ketchup on hot dogs.

    • Doubting Thomas

      Hot dogs at all.

    • ThaneOfDrones

      I am proud to live in a free country, where a person is free to put whatever they want on their hot dogs. Why do you hate freedom?

      • LastManOnEarth

        Did your parents have any AMERICAN children?

        • ThaneOfDrones

          Quite a few of them. Thank you for asking.

  • skl

    Your turn
    Which practice or attitude, customary today, will our descendants look back on with
    surprise or shock?

    I’ll use some of your words and change a few:

    … future society will look back on us with horror that we allowed
    human lives in the womb
    to be killed, butchered…Today, we are
    outraged at the idea of clubbing baby seals for fur and at bays red with blood from Japanese dolphin
    kills, and our future selves will have the same revulsion at our killing humans for convenience.

    • I would hope that the idea of focusing on abortion rather than the cause would be shocking.

      • skl

        I think it would be on abortion for the cause of convenience.

        • Pofarmer

          You give weasels a bad name. Asshat.

        • Ignorant Amos

          And that’s giving the asshat’s a bad name, mate.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Dunno…there are days I’d like to drop skl into a 20 ft deep pit with a floor covered with rabid starving weasels…

        • Greg G.

          A pregnancy in not a minor inconvenience. It is a great imposition on someone who does not want to become a parent at that place and time.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Not your body.

          Not your choice.

          Removing a goiter could also be a matter of convenience…fixing a cleft palate, separating conjoined twins…and if ALL human life is precious, what about defective human organ tissue removed during surgery? Does THAT deserve a funeral, too?

          Or only what your hateful superstition demands?

        • Logan Blackisle

          Surprisingly, I partly agree with this sentiment. I agree that abortion will likely be made illegal in the future – when technology becomes sufficiently advanced – and I agree that our descendants will look back in horror at how casual we are with it; again, when technology becomes sufficiently advanced.

          The key point is that technology has to become sufficiently advanced to make it easy to remove a fetus from a pregnant woman, and put the fetus into an artificial womb.

          When this point has been reached, abortion becomes immoral. Until this point has been reached, abortion is a necessary evil, which is immoral to make illegal.

          It seems like skl and I have reached roughly the same stance in this regard – though likely not for the same reason! (lifelong atheist from Denmark, here)

        • This assumes that there will be plenty of good homes for the baby once it’s “born” after 9 months natural + artificial gestation. That might be true, or maybe not.

          I think likelier would be a world with pretty much no unwanted pregnancies because of frank and open discussion of how sex works and how not to get pregnant + easy access to nearly 100% effective contraception.

        • Greg G.

          It sounds like “Brave New World”. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brave_New_World

        • I didn’t bother going down that path, but yeah. If you can move a fetus from a woman to an incubator when it’s unwanted, why bother going through the danger and pain of carrying a fetus to term in any situation? Everyone would make babies that way.

        • Greg G.

          But then why take them from the uterus when you can fertilize the egg in a test tube?

          They might consider it immoral to have a baby the natural way where the development can’t be monitored continuously. They might not want the ovum being fertilized by some random dude who tickles a potential mother’s fancy.

        • Carol Lynn

          Are you limiting this new, wondrous, expensive, artificial womb to not-aborted fetuses or are you assuming that there will be plenty of technology to go around so that all the rich women won’t be tying it up? I can imagine a *stigma* to actually *being* pregnant with a kid developing *inside a woman* with no chance for intervention to correct development issues, so that people who can’t afford the technology wold be *more* prone to aborting that fetus before it ‘showed’. (Do you read NO science fiction? Your lack of imagination is depressing.)

        • Logan Blackisle

          Are you limiting this new, wondrous, expensive, artificial womb to not-aborted fetuses

          No, I think you need to think a few decades further ahead to reach the point I’m talking about.

          I imagine that rich women will use it first, and that that, along with more research, development, and time, will drive the price down.

          And I imagine that the above trend will continue until the technology becomes sufficiently cheap, that morality will start a new trend, which will end with abortion being not only immoral, but outright illegal.

          Also, how on Earth would rich women using the technology “tie it up”?

          The more people use it, the more developed the technology will become, and the cheaper it will become, until it reaches an equilibrium.

        • Carol Lynn

          I repeat. Your lack of imagination is stunning. You should try and read more science fiction.

        • Logan Blackisle

          That’s nice.

        • epeeist

          I imagine that rich women will use it first, and that that, along with more research, development, and time, will drive the price down.

          “I’m awfully glad I’m a Beta”

        • I agree–in the area of consumer electronics, for example, everyone has a flat screen TV and smart phone because they were initially toys for the rich, but sales to those rich people helped drive down the cost. Elon Musk is trying to do the same thing with electric cars.

        • Greg G.

          I have heard that the big flat screen TVs are cheap because the price is subsidized by the money they get from advertisers by gleaming information from the customers. The TVs are like in 1984, they are watching you. Not the government but capitalism.

          Or maybe I have bought into paranoia. IIANM, 1984 is now closer in time to its release date as a novel than than this date in 1984 is to today..

        • Kodie

          Well, it’s the reason I didn’t get a smart tv. I don’t think my tv is watching me. What I read about Roombas was fascinating though. Watch for the price of a Roomba to drop drastically – that will be your first clue, although the price of a non-smart tv was reasonable because they make the smart feature of a spy tv seem more desirable, you don’t want one of those old dumb tvs. I had a tube tv when I moved here in 2005, can still remember having it on a chair because it was hard to say goodbye, but it eventually, like all things they want you to buy, it ended up in a dumpster.

          Swinging back on topic, I would like people to be horrified about how much trash they produce and how much they feel like they need to buy new things. I was actually conflicted about buying reusable shopping bags because I know they will fail eventually, and end up in the trash like the last set I had, and how recycling is getting to be kind of a scam and most recycling is landfilled, and factories keep churning out new products to satisfy consumer demand. I had a bag I liked that was canvas, and like a terrible human, I didn’t fix the strap that was failing, and invested in new bags instead. We buy things we need and look for cheap prices, and when something breaks, we get another one, and the old one ends up in a landfill. If we were still talking about tvs, remember when you would get your tv repaired? Who can or would bother repairing your tv now? In less than 15 years, I’m on my 3rd tv, and my 4th laptop.

          That’s fucked up! That is so really motherfucking fucked up. How many cardboard boxes, how many toys, how many laundry baskets, and suitcases and particle-board furniture I have seen go to the trash in the alley by my apartment in less than 15 years. People want cheap, they buy cheap, they throw it out when they move (or sooner), and buy another one because they’re cheap! There’s a market for it. I would like this to become horrifying. I tend to use things until I can’t use them anymore. I make do, I get by. Something I had quite a while ago, on some forum, and possibly not knowing my financial situation, said, “just buy a new one,” well, that’s $20 I’d rather not, and it could be fixed by me, it’s just annoying, not impossible. I would like these things to be cheap enough for someone like me to buy a new one if I absolutely have to, but for people to generally consider what the actual cost is to throw things away that still work and replace them because they don’t want the fuss.

        • Greg G.

          What I read about Roombas was fascinating though. Watch for the price of a Roomba to drop drastically – that will be your first clue, although the price of a non-smart tv was reasonable because they make the smart feature of a spy tv seem more desirable, you don’t want one of those old dumb tvs.

          I have just started seeing ads on FaceBook about a new kind of Roomba-like robot for $80 that is supposed to be better. They say it was designed by the original designers who didn’t like how the Roomba company used cheaper parts but charged more for the advertizing of it because people would pay it.

          Now you have made me suspicious of that.

        • Kodie

          Have you seen a Roomba? I am suspicious that it’s not really that helpful. My mom got one, and it was my impression that it would learn its way around so that it would know how far away from its dock it was when the battery was low so it could return to the dock before the battery dies, but it gets stuck and no way to know where it is if it’s not in the middle of the room, or get it from under a piece of furniture where it chooses to die. It doesn’t vacuum like it’s mowing the lawn, so there’s no real sense that it’s covering territory that you would want to do. I mean, it heads straight for my mom’s room, but then it goes under the bed a lot (where no one sees the dust), in zigzags around the room, goes back under the bed, goes back into the hallway, does some stuff, comes back to the bedroom and keeps trying to pick up something under the bed. It’s also not good for, like if you just dropped something and you need to vacuum it up. You put it right there, but it wants to do its own thing. I don’t know if it’s really too stupid to report its findings or if it is finding the main gossip to send back to its home base somewhere else in the house. I think my mom keeps rolls of wrapping paper under her bed, and possibly a table leaf. It must be frustrating for the Roomba to try to catch the edge of that and never finish going over that area, when there are crumbs in the kitchen, but the Roomba, like my mom, doesn’t like to spend too much time there.

        • Greg G.

          I have never had a Roomba but I read about them when they came out. They vacuum by a random walk, not a predetermined path. I thought it had a sensor homing for the charging unit.

          The new ones that I saw map out the room, then uses an algorithm to find the most efficient path.

        • Kodie

          Why would abortion be any more immoral than menstruation, you dolt.

        • Kodie

          I’m appalled that people are so afraid of birth control, and afraid of immigrants, but feel entitled to have as many children as they can and force women to have children they don’t want, and then pitch a fucking fit about those babies growing up like thugs or whatever.

          PUH- fucking – lease. You care about the least little seedling, as though it cares. Stop trying to tell us you’re not a religious nut either.

    • Ignorant Amos

      …for convenience.

      For convenience? As in…the state of being able to proceed with something without difficulty…? Wise ta fuck up ya moron.

    • katiehippie

      We seem to be ok with killing humans for oil. Our convenience to drive cars and burn energy wastefully.
      Some religiouos people refuse to take their kids to doctors and let them die.
      You seem ok with forcing women to give birth, where is the same concern for babies that are already born? Babies whose mothers need food and shelter and help to live. Not just live but have a chance at living well. Where is the paid maternity/paternity leave? (in the US) Where is the help with childcare and healthcare so these babies can live a good life? You should be in favor of that as well. Are you? All these babies that you insist need to be born, will you be there to help take care of them? Will you? I’m outraged that people like you haven’t already done these things. So much for caring about life. You can’t just pick and choose which life is important.

      • Doubting Thomas

        We seem to be ok with killing humans for oil.

        Unless you’re talking about the lives lost due to pollution, I don’t think we are in any sense ok with killing humans for oil.

        • Which conceivably segues to nuclear power. Nuclear power produces no greenhouse gases, while fossil fuels are charged with 7M premature deaths per year. Nevertheless, nuclear power is on lots of people’s naughty lists. I don’t know whether to predict more or less nuclear in our future.

          Yes, wind and solar are increasing their market share, but it seems you need to have some dependable source of power to take care of the base load. Fossil fuel plants are very reliable, and so would be nuclear.

        • Doubting Thomas

          And, oddly enough, the charts I’ve seen indicate that nuclear causes fewer deaths than even solar or wind.

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/fc5fba635ac64470ee16b8ed9be34580506fcc567817c4b9595b23f216f76b92.png

        • ThaneOfDrones

          Keep in mind the limitations of such a comparison. There may be few immediate, direct deaths from nuclear power generation, but if there are long-term health effects such as cancer, these will be under-represented in the numbers because they don’t show up for decades and the cause is hard to assign.

        • We need to compare nuclear deaths with deaths due to the status quo. “According to the World Health Organization in 2012, urban outdoor air pollution, from the burning of fossil fuels and biomass is estimated to cause 3 million deaths worldwide per year and indoor air pollution from biomass and fossil fuel burning is estimated to cause approximately 4.3 million premature deaths.”

          The status quo is really, really bad, and that’s not even taking into account climate change. It surprises me that the people who appreciate the problem of climate change are the ones who don’t want nuclear power to help.

        • Jim Baerg

          This relates to my comment about ‘The Ethics of Belief’.
          It is an example of how mistaken belief causes immense harm.
          The opposition to nuclear results in a lot of coal being burned.

        • Michael Neville

          The major problems with nuclear power are:

          ● Building, operating and maintaining nuclear power plants is expensive. Taking them out of commission is also expensive.

          ● If the reactors aren’t properly operated and maintained then the possibility of a Chernobyl type accident becomes a major concern.

          ● Long term disposal of radioactive waste is a serious problem with very expensive solutions.

          Having spent years in nuclear submarines I’m a proponent of nuclear power, but I do realize there are problems with it. There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.

        • The biggest problem IMO is our putting our heads in the sand for the last 40 years. Lots of development has happened, though not that much happened in the US as could’ve.

          Have you watched the documentary “Pandora’s Promise”? I think I’ve posted about it. The Integral Fast Reactor was an experimental reactor that returned itself to a safe state with a simulated power failure, and it was designed to produce little nuclear waste and to reprocess its waste onsite. There’s little nuclear waste if the reactor is designed to treat “waste” as “fuel.” There are thorium reactors that make no plutonium. There are lots of other designs, either on paper or built that show a lot of promise.

          And then, of course, there’s fusion.

          I’m no expert, but I think the West’s phobia against nuclear is inappropriate, especially at a time when we’re looking for fossil fuel alternatives.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          If you’re interested in safe nuclear, look into ‘pebble bed’ reactors:

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pebble-bed_reactor

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          FYI, *part* of the solution could be photovoltaic.

          Lots of people on Long Island, when replacing their roofs, are putting up photovoltaic arrays across the whole roof. It’s had enough of an effect that LIPA is raising its rates, because *by law* (NY hasn’t let ALEC screw up those laws yet) the utility is required to buy power from such folks at the same price it *sells* power *to* them. This is in New York, waaaaay up north as USAian cities go, and the cells provide enough power to make economic sense.

          I’d like to mandate that new / replacement roofs MUST be made of photovoltaic cells and wired in to the grid, even providing low-cost loans for poor folks until the price drops vs. current roofing materials, unless the building is in COMPLETE shade.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          If the reactors aren’t properly operated and maintained then the
          possibility of a Chernobyl type accident becomes a major concern.

          This is true with the current generation of light water reactors, designed in the 1960s. There are alternatives such as thorium reactors, pebble bed, etc. Thorium reactors also generate far less radioactive waste. I might be open to new reactor designs if it was coupled with retirement of the older generation plants.

        • ThaneOfDrones
        • It’d be nice if something useful came out of Washington.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          The US *overthrew the elected government of Iran* decades ago and installed the Shah because Iran planned to nationalize the oil industry and kick out the big western oil companies.

          Do you think no lives were lost in that revolution?

          Venezuela is another such situation in the making…as was/is Iraq.

        • Doubting Thomas

          It’s not whether lives were lost, it’s whether most people are ok with killing for oil. They aren’t. That’s why those interventions you mentioned were sold as something other than “We need some oil. Let’s go kill the people that have it and take it from them.”

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          The person eating the steak is just as culpable as the butcher, IMHO.

        • Doubting Thomas

          Not if they people eating were lied to about what they are eating.

        • Greg G.

          Eeeewwww! Meatloaf AGAIN?!?!?!?

          Rocky Horror Picture Show fans will understand this.

        • katiehippie

          The Iraq war?

        • Doubting Thomas

          If we were ok with killing humans for oil, they they wouldn’t have needed to make up lies about WMDs to sell the war. Just because that might have been the motivation behind the scenes doesn’t mean the majority was good with it.

      • skl

        You seem ok with killing humans if you think they have little chance of what you consider “living well”, of what you consider “a good life”.

        I don’t.

        • Greg G.

          No, it’s because a human being gets to decide what happens to their body and whether they will reproduce.

        • Michael Neville

          Of course you don’t. Like many religious fanatics you’re driven purely by dogma and ideology and have no concern about actual people. You think all you need to do is suck up to your imaginary god and could not care less about human beings.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          It’s a parasite, asshole.

          If it’s in YOUR body, you have a choice.

          Otherwise, STFU & GTFO.

        • katiehippie

          So are you helping them? You insist they be born tohave a horrible life in poverty? I would say that’s worse than never being born. Are you for birth control so that abortion would be a little used option? Are you for the living or not? Just being alive is no consolation if your life is a living hell.

        • skl is an honorable person. I’m sure he wants to be taxed so that society can improve the poor conditions that these “saved” children will grow up in.

        • skl

          You insist they be born tohave a horrible life in poverty? I would say that’s worse than never being born.

          By that reasoning, your solution to combat poverty is to
          kill all the poor people.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”

          Remember that?

        • katiehippie

          How about we help the poor people instead of blaming them for being poor. How about we try that? That never seems to be a solution for you because you don’t really want to help people at all, you just want to control women. You want to be able to tell them “oh, you shouldn’t have gotten pregnant in the first place but I’m going to force you to have a baby you can’t afford to take care of, and oh, I’m not going to help you with that once you have the baby, have a great life!” Then you walk away smugly and blame poor people for drug abuse and poverty and whatever else you feel like blaming them for that day. You are despicable.

        • skl

          … you just want to control women.

          I keep hearing this, and I find it so ridiculous.
          I just don’t like allowing the killing of human beings on the basis that they’re inconvenient.

        • katiehippie

          But it’s perfectly fine to totally ignore the people that are already born. Who cares about them, right? So all these babies you want to be born, is it morally defensible to force them to live a life of poverty and hopelessness? Are you helping them? Are you going to support every child you force a woman to have? Are you helping support people around the world that will die from preventable diseases? If you aren’t, then you are killing them through inaction. Perhaps even through saying it’s inconvenient for you to spend all your money doing that. If you are pro life, you better be pro everyone’s life, not just fetuses.

        • If you cared about “killing human beings,” you’d focus on reducing the demand for abortions.

        • skl

          In other words,

          ‘Killing human beings for convenience should continue, so
          long as attempts are made to reduce such convenience killings.’

        • In other words: if you actually want to reduce abortions, you should take the actions that are most likely to reduce abortions.

        • skl

          Not sure what you’re talking about.

          Birth control pills and devices have long been widely available for free or low cost. Sex ed is already taught in virtually every school (and then there’s Google). Medicaid has been around for generations to pay for poor girl pregnancy care. And we’ve always had adoption agencies.

          I don’t know what you mean.

        • Who’s surprised?

          You’re saying that the US unwanted abortion rate is about as low as it could possibly go? No room for improvement? You’re adorable when you’re stupid.

          Read this:
          https://valerietarico.com/2015/09/11/if-the-anti-abortion-frenzy-were-actually-about-abortion-what-a-serious-anti-abortion-movement-would-actually-look-like/

        • skl

          Sure, more birth control, more sex ed, more money for
          mommies… but if one “mistake” happens (or
          a million), kill for convenience. Backup “contraception”.

        • When what you’re killing isn’t a person, that can be justified.

          I’m still puzzled at your running away from the evidence that your approach isn’t reducing the abortion rate. There’s an avenue open that will conceivably cut it by 90%. Doesn’t interest you, apparently.

        • skl

          When what you’re killing isn’t a person…

          Prove it.

          I’m still puzzled at your running away from the evidence
          that your approach isn’t reducing the abortion rate.

          I’m puzzled by what you think my “approach” is.

        • Prove it.

          See my spectrum argument.

          I’m puzzled by what you think my “approach” is.

          Attacking abortion. (Did I guess right?)

        • skl

          OK, so you can’t prove it.

          And yes, I attack abortion. (I also have been known to
          attack other things I don’t like – such as rape, murder, theft.)

        • so you can’t prove it.

          Lots of dictionaries make clear that the pre-born isn’t a person. But if it helps you sleep at night, go ahead and tell yourself that I can’t prove it, just like you can’t.

          And yes, I attack abortion.

          I wonder, though, why you don’t focus on the best approaches to minimize abortion. I realize that you don’t traffic much in evidence, but if you did, you could find the best approaches and pursue them instead.

        • skl

          Let me put it a different way, and we’ll call it a night.
          We both would support all kinds of “best approaches to
          minimize” the chances of, say, rape.
          The difference between you and me is that I would at the
          same time
          make rape illegal, and you wouldn’t.

        • We both would support all kinds of “best approaches to
          minimize” the chances of, say, rape.

          Nope. The rape analogy would be this: I would point out the evidence-based approaches to minimizing rape, and all you would want to do is make it illegal.

        • skl

          Nope.

        • Ah, much clearer, thanks. You’ve completely rearranged my attitude on the matter.

        • Kodie

          You are terrible and ignorant. People like you have been reducing access to birth control and sex education, and abortion, so the truth of it is, all of you hate women and want them to donate their (white) babies to clinics run by Christians who profit from adoption.

          You don’t give a shit about people. You care about pre-born non-sensate blobs because you are a slave to the propaganda. They are not babies, they do not miss their lives, they don’t have to be born, and there are a lot of people already. Why do we need EVERY ONE to exist? I am not saying genocide – these are across all social distinctions.

          Sure, there’s a shortage of healthy white babies for barren white Christians to adopt, that’s why this issue exists. You don’t care about a bug, you don’t care about a pig, you don’t care about an immigrant, and you don’t care about a Muslim, so PUH-FUCKING-LEASE. Your Christian priorities are molded by propaganda, and all fucked up.

        • Kodie

          You don’t like women. You think they are dirty and slutty and frivolous for having sex and then not wanting to deal with “consequences.” Absolutely, you are a horrible person who wants to control women. You don’t THINK that you do, because you are a slave of propaganda, and you don’t want to see it.

        • Kodie

          Nobody is saying that, you douche. Propaganda that forces women to feel guilty and don’t get an abortion they’d prefer to have is your fault. Nobody should feel guilty about doing what’s best for their life.

        • Kodie

          You stupid Christians have a terrible perspective. Suffering is great, because good can come from it!

          Are you for birth control and women’s freedom of sexuality?

      • ThaneOfDrones

        We seem to be ok with killing humans for oil.

        The first image that plashed in my mind was of whaling ships.

        • katiehippie

          Yeah, it started before we knew we could drill for oil.

    • Greg G.

      … future society will look back on us with horror that we allowed
      human lives in the womb to be killed, butchered…

      Twenty-five years ago, I saw an extrapolation that with the growth rate of the human population on earth, in a thousand years, humans would outweigh the rest of the universe. Of course, the earth would be completely consumed before that. I think future generations will be shocked that there were no restrictions on reproduction when we could anticipate the problems with uninhibited reproduction.

      • Ignorant Amos

        There are rational folk today that are shocked that there are no restrictions on reproduction for all sorts of reasons. including yours. And a lot of the blame in the future for this, will be leveled at that feet of what will be that defunct thing called religion and it’s woo-woo merchants like skl.

      • Kodie

        I was thinking about this immigration “crisis” and why can’t we get Norwegians (because it’s better in Norway?) but, like, how many people are creeping in vs. how entitled certain religious families feel to pump out 19 kids who are mostly going to be terrible, uneducated bots, but we have laws of who is born in the US is a citizen and 1st Amendment religious freedoms. We can’t force anyone against their religion to use birth control, we can’t force anyone to educate their children in actual science vs. biblical myth disguised in science language, and we can’t force anyone to limit how many of these stupid children are going to be set free in the US, who each will be expected to seek a spouse and have 19 idiots of their own. And people raise money for them, they are not all supporting themselves. They’re welfare, but they are approved….. not so the “welfare queen” who maybe isn’t married, has sex with different men, and has babies because they think welfare will give her more money per kid. I don’t know what people think welfare pays per baby. They certainly don’t want to let her get an abortion, because they are superstitious about their tax money funding 1 cent of it. They certainly don’t want their tax money to pay for her to have as much sex as she pleases on sufficient birth control. They resent her having children, but they don’t resent paying for white fundies to have a lot of children.

        It’s super bigoted. They think certain immigrants can’t be good people, aren’t productive, and use having a child in America to take our resources, while certain American citizens are treated just as awful, but clearly, wholesome white suburban Christian families can soak up taxes, they are pumping up the population and taking resources and jobs for CHRISTIANS.

        • Greg G.

          They say that immigrants will take their jobs. What kind of job do they have that they can be replaced by someone who speaks broken English?

    • Michael Neville

      As usual, you’re wrong. What we’ll see is amazement that religious fanatics almost succeeded in denying women the right to decide what should happen to their bodies. What they’ll consider even more contemptible is that the people driving this piece of misogyny were almost entirely men. Their misogyny was obvious when they not only tried to outlaw abortion but were vehemently against the two things shown to reduce abortion rates, comprehensive sex education and easy access to contraception.

      • Furthermore, the problem that pro-lifers aren’t even going about it effectively. If they actually cared about no abortions, they’d join forces with pro-choice advocates and work on minimizing the cause, unwanted pregnancies.

      • Ignorant Amos

        What flabbergasts me is the host of women that are so fucked up by the God virus that they would deprive other women and indeed, punish said for availing themselves of the procedure.

    • Joe

      No, that battle is already won elsewhere in the developed world. America is just lagging behind, and that’s only because they have a very belligerent vocal minority.

    • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

      BTW, what’s your stance on effective, *woman-controlled* birth control, so women don’t GET pregnant without wanting to be, since that situation leads to abortion.

      Pro or con? And WHY??

      And you should phrase that as:
      “That we allowed *hateful religious bigots* to try to take away the bodily autonomy of any woman who became pregnant, and forced her to carry the pregnancy to term regardless of her desires or the effect it would have on her life.”

      THAT will be what horrifies people in the future, you hateful superstitious bigot.

    • ThaneOfDrones

      Next up: skl compares caviar to the Holocaust

  • eric

    Health care in the US. Kids growing up 20 years from now will look at their parents as crazy people when talking about how people had to buy health insurance and that, if you were poor or had a pre-existing condition, you just might have to go without it.

    Drunk driving. Kids 40 years from now will think it insane that anyone would even contemplate doing that out of convenience. Why take such a massive risk of your own life and others when you can press a button and call an automated vehicle to take you anywhere you want to go?

    There’s my guesses. I’m somewhat skeptical polygamy is going to be accepted any time soon. One of the big reasons (IMO) gay marriage was accepted in just a few years is because it’s objectors could not articulate any cogent secular reason against it. It harms nobody…unless you accept Christian ideas of spiritual harm, which neither non-Christians nor the courts recognize as a valid counter-argument. But polygamy has a long and even current history of being linked to sexual exploitation of young women. So while in principle, liberals may have a point in that one can have these sorts of relationships without harm, in practice there has historically been a strong correlation between it and abuse of women. So unlike gay marriage, it is easy for objectors to point to polygamous societies and even sub-cultures in the US that practice it, and say “look! Despite how it could be fair and equitable, what it actually does most of the time is massive harm to women.”

    • Doubting Thomas

      Drunk driving. Kids 40 years from now will think it insane that anyone
      would even contemplate doing that out of convenience. Why take such a
      massive risk of your own life and others when you can press a button and
      call an automated vehicle to take you anywhere you want to go?

      No just drunk driving, but possibly driving at all. It might be strange to look back and realize we let slow witted, narrow sighted, easily distracted humans operate two ton machines at 60 mph in the vicinity of other people. In comparison to the machines we have driving us around in the future, letting people take the wheel might seem incredibly foolish.

      • With self-driving vehicles being far safer, future cars might focus on comfort but not crash-worthiness, since they wouldn’t be in crashes. That would make them lighter.

        The idea of private car ownership might go as well. Maybe it will be an Uber-world, with a fleet of self-driving taxis.

        • Greg G.

          A few years ago, I heard that prediction for as soon as the 2020s.

        • Ignorant Amos

          I got a new car 6 months ago…it has just broke the 800 miles on the clock distance driven…I really can’t justify the expense of it, but what can one do with little alternative?

        • Joe

          I work in an industry related to the Automotive industry, and at a future trends seminar, an executive from a lubricant company was saying exactly that. You don’t need to own a car, you just summon one via your mobile and it will come to you, drop you off at your destination, then either go on another job or back to a central hub.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Not only that, electric vehicles have VASTLY fewer parts and require less maintenance than internal combustion engines.

        • Joe

          Which is not great for the lubricant industry, since there will be just four bearing hubs in a car. but they are looking towards the future.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          That’s just fine, if you are ready to order a car and have it show with the back seat doused in vodka-laced vomit. I think the first few kidnappings will also prompt a rethink. And all those cars that are not in use – they are going to be out there circling the block, waiting for their next call. That’s not going to help traffic.

        • Joe

          Well, there would presumably be the same safeguards a taxi company has.

          And there would indeed be local “hubs” to keep the cars off the road, which would be integrated into any new high-density housing development, since parking spaces wouldn’t be as necessary.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          If there were “hubs” then people who own cars would want to use them as parking lots for their vehicles.

        • Joe

          They would be specially designated. We already have spots for pool cars on the streets in my neighborhood.

        • Ignorant Amos

          So much for “energize” then…with all this talk of cars still being about…I thought they’d have gone the way of the horse and cart.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          With self-driving vehicles being far safer, future cars might focus on comfort but not crash-worthiness…

          Erm. Even if a car’s driving algorithm is top notch, it has to exist on roadways with other drivers. And deer.

        • Good point about the deer. As for other drivers, yes, but I was imagining a post-driver world.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Will future cars be driven on roads as we know them?

          Roads could be elevated avoiding the likes of deer…better still, Elon Musk has some novel ideas….

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uI3oJqMBpPs

        • ThaneOfDrones

          Yes, his ideas are novel. I would prefer good.

          Take the still image from that video you linked. It shows a single personal vehicle set up to be transported through a tunnel. Doing shit like that is certainly not going to achieve the transportation throughput of an ordinary subway system. And we already know how to do ordinary subway systems, we don’t need Elon Musk for that. His tunneling ideas are not about how to move crowds from here to there; they are about helping insulated rich people avoid the crowds.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Sometimes the novel develops into the good. Since the subway system hasn’t already dealt with the congestion issue…this seems to be an “as well as” idea foe as you say, the ones who can afford it.. But my dream thinking was more in taking Musk’s concept for the urban and apply it to the rural, in an intercity style application…to avoid the deer problem, so to speak.

          And since we are navel gazing in hypothetical’s, am envisaging a time when there will only be insulated rich people, or at least no poor people, a future time where everything laborious will be done by robotics and AI. Or maybe not.

        • cool

        • Kodie

          Roads are already elevated. In my city, they famously tore one of them down to make an over-budget and prolonged project known as “the Big Dig,” and use the space that used to have ugly highway overpasses into a park. Wherever I go, I see some roads elevated to cross other roads so no one has to stop. I can’t imagine it would go over to elevate all the roads, and then we would have big drones taking us everywhere, making all that construction and ugliness a huge waste. And if there were no roads on the ground, where would we live, how would the road take us to this store or that store? Is there an elevator down, or are all the buildings up in the sky now, and let the deer walk down the old streets. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eSptqzfTSSE

          Isn’t it cute, in the future, kids still go away from home to school, people still shop in stores, with cash, and there are still manufacturing jobs to make sprockets and cogs. (According to the Wiki article on The Jetsons, George Jetson only works 1 hour a day, 2 days a week, turning the Referential Universal Digital Indexer (R.U.D.I.) on and off). I think the main problem people had with the flying cars of the future that we have always been promised, is the problem of driving, but George Jetson takes his eye off the controls without crashing into anyone. It’s still his personal vehicle, but it folds up the size of a briefcase.

          Speaking of eyesores like most overpasses, border wall/fences, and the like, I recently saw this article: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2019-02-13/why-america-s-new-apartment-buildings-all-look-the-same
          There is a massive surge of development in my city and surrounding cities, they knock down everything and put these things up all over the place. I don’t know if they’re the ugliest things I’ve ever seen, but they are certainly the boring khakis of architecture, and they’re invading everywhere around here, along with… I had an idea, why do parking garages have to look so disgusting? It’s like they decided, it’s just a parking garage, it doesn’t have to be nice. Elevated highway makers have decided the same thing – hardly any of them you’d want to look at.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Roads are already elevated.

          Of course, but not to help the deer.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elevated_highway

          And not out in the rural areas, where roadkill is more prevalent. Which was the point I was addressing. Elevated, or underground road systems would surely reduce the risk to roadkill from folk travelling intercity. No? Of course, highways are elevated in rural areas, but that is to expedite the crossing of undulating terrain. Ever been on the autobahn system in Germany?

          https://images.robertharding.com/previeww/RM/RH/HORIZONTAL/120-4424.jpg

          Wherever I go, I see some roads elevated to cross other roads so no one has to stop.

          There is the infamous Spaghetti Junction in Birmingham, England. Of which there are many examples all over. Perhaps they are an example of something we will look back upon and think WTF?

          https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/307230005802993583/?lp=true

          I can’t imagine it would go over to elevate all the roads, and then we would have big drones taking us everywhere, making all that construction and ugliness a huge waste.

          It seems that in the U.S., the concept is already being looked at as a big mistake.

          https://www.worldfinance.com/infrastructure-investment/project-finance/how-the-construction-of-elevated-highways-came-to-an-end

          And if there were no roads on the ground, where would we live, how would the road take us to this store or that store?

          Will stores even be a thing?

          Is there an elevator down, or are all the buildings up in the sky now, and let the deer walk down the old streets.

          There’s a thought. I immediately thought of the Will Smith movie “I am Legend”…

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BHZKSYLAecQ

          But perhaps the use for roads will be superseded before they innovation I’m proposing. I’m thinking maglev’s…or flying cars. The cars may be automated to avoid the driver error.

          We already have the channel tunnel. Where cars board big trains.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tiXSdfj5-bM

          …why do parking garages have to look so disgusting?

          They don’t, but it’s all about the money I suspect.

          https://www.looking4.com/uk/blog/worlds-coolest-car-parks

          Of course, it’s still a matter of subjective taste.

          All this navel gazing and hypothetical’s…such fun.

        • Greg G.

          We already have the channel tunnel. Where cars board big trains.

          Not the scenic route.

        • Pofarmer

          I don’t know exactly how these tunnels are supposed to operate. But. If you could run an electric car in them, and keep the car charged, it would solve the huge problem with electric cars, in that long trips are a boondoggle. If you came out the other side of the tunnel fully charged, then you’d still have range to do, “stuff”.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Not much to see crossing the English Channel…especially when all one wants to do is get to the other side.

          A wonder who down voted my comment. How can talking mundane hypothetical stuff be offensive.

        • Greg G.

          There is a small ferry a few miles from my hometown that is the quickest way to West Virginia. Dad used it twice a day for years to go to work. It was very scenic.

          I checked to see if I misclicked. It wasn’t me.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Scenic is nice if ya’ve got the time. Seeing as it was the quickest for your father, he had the time.

        • Greg G.

          The idea of the scenery of the Channel reminds me of the old Henny Youngman joke:

          Q: Why does the new Italian Navy have glass-bottomed boats?
          A: So they can see the oooold Italian Navy.

        • Ignorant Amos

          The English Channel is among the busiest shipping lanes in the world. Just getting across is the important factor. The D-day guys would agree too.

        • Kodie

          All this navel gazing and hypothetical’s…such fun.

          I tried to respond, but Disqus makes these massive spaces. I copied it into Word, and it was 57 pages long including so many blank pages, and extra spacing between lines, and awkward line returns with more spaces and one word on a line followed by 3 blank pages and part of the rest of the sentence there. I took out the spaces, and made some replies to some things, and paste 2 pages of text back into Disqus box, and it fucked up the formatting too badly. It was so fun.

        • epeeist

          I tried to respond, but Disqus makes these massive spaces.

          Yep, once again the Disqus developers display their incompetence.

        • Greg G.

          I blame Word for that. Disqus is constrained by the browsers.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Yeah…epeeist reports the same problem. I don’t know about being fun, all that work would bug the fuck out of me, even if it did end up positive. Doffs cap in your direction foe the expended effort.

        • Kodie

          Luckily, I didn’t delete the document in word. Greg G says use notepad instead, and it looks like it worked. My only problem might be I double blockquoted some of the things I said before so they don’t put words in your mouth, and I don’t know if that’s the correct way. Read, don’t read, respond if you want, at least I got to paste my efforts.

          Roads are already elevated.

          Of course, but not to help the deer.

          My point was, if we make that a thing, it’s not usually very interesting to look at, and mostly an eyesore. We make bridges over water that are usually architecturally artful, but bridges over other roads are just ugly. Plus, a lot of times, you go over one, and it has another ugly road sign (in addition to regular traffic signs) that names the bridge for a person or a group, a lot of times some local veteran group. Thanks for your service, have an ugly overpass with an ugly sign, because if we make a nice sign, nobody will stop and see that this bridge honors you. And if you drive under one at a perpective to see the ugly bridge, it will usually have the name of the street it is instead, like I give a fuck the name of the road I can’t turn onto.

          And not out in the rural areas, where roadkill is more prevalent. Which was the point I was addressing. Elevated, or underground road systems would surely reduce the risk to roadkill from folk travelling intercity. No? Of course, highways are elevated in rural areas, but that is to expedite the crossing of undulating terrain. Ever been on the autobahn system in Germany?

          In rural areas, I want to see less of that, but that’s basically what our interstate system is…. but mostly not elevated unless it’s crossing something else. It’s kind of a bad real estate deal, relatively, to live right next to the interstate, like that house in the picture, because of noise, air quality, and the terrible view. In the US, most of interstate driving is scenic, which I mean, undeveloped or rural, with some stops at major shopping or business centers. When you are in these sections, the road look more like your Spaghetti Junction there. I can’t find a good picture of what it’s like to drive through Hartford, CT, for example. It’s not quite as complex, but the highway is, like 8 lanes wide (I don’t have time while I’m driving to try to count them) one way and the other in places, plus an HOV lane I never see anyone use, so everyone has to try to be in the right lane to funnel off at your proper interchange, and move over one lane as you pass an exit, plus there’s a tunnel too.

          It seems that in the U.S., the concept is already being looked at as a big mistake.

          Well, if they made them more artful and architectural instead of taking a big messy poop on the landscape, we might enjoy them.

          And if there were no roads on the ground, where would we live, how would the road take us to this store or that store?

          Will stores even be a thing?

          You know what I mean, though? Where will the places people go be, if not still on the ground? I guess you’re not talking about elevating anything super high off the ground, just enough to miss the deer and stuff, but doesn’t building more structures kill animals too? And uses resources, and intrudes on the environment. I find all the building to mainly be the parasitic habit of hives of humans, who can’t leave anything alone. If they can’t find a reason not to build at the Grand Canyon, it’s just over, having geographical features to look at.

          There’s a thought. I immediately thought of the Will Smith movie “I am Legend”…

          It’s different if the city is abandoned, or everyone else is dead, which is what’s going to happen anyway, someday. It happened to some cities already.

          But perhaps the use for roads will be superseded before they innovation I’m proposing. I’m thinking maglev’s…or flying cars. The cars may be automated to avoid the driver error.
          We already have the channel tunnel. Where cars board big trains.

          I was watching, thinking, well, it’s like a ferry anyway. Then I thought, why not just a track in the tunnel, that’s what it looked like as they were driving up to their spot in line, like you enter a tunnel, park your car, and the tunnel just keeps running like a conveyor belt, but I can’t think how that works either, because if you stop your car, how does it get onto the track, or how to stop your car while on a moving track, and how do you stop people from trying to drive through faster and filling the tunnel with exhaust fumes… unless it was an electric car. I think flying car/drone things, or something that utilizes our road infrastructure, and we’d still have to keep repairing the roads the whole time.

          …why do parking garages have to look so disgusting?

          They don’t, but it’s all about the money I suspect. Of course, it’s still a matter of subjective taste.

          It’s like the bridges vs. overpasses – why do bridges over other roads look like they don’t care what they look like, they all look the same, green underneath with criss-cross beams, and a chain link fence so people can’t throw things off or jump onto the highway below, and if you have to look at it, it’s an eyesore. They build ok buildings and houses for people to live in, but as I wrote, they are all very similar, and being slapped up by the dozens all over, without any thought to future judgment, but buildings for cars are all big tan/gray cement blocks. Buildings from the past, such as I live in were basically brick cubes, for all intents and purposes, but the older something is, it grows on you, it has the bit of nostalgia about it, unless they tear something down to build another ugly thing, which is what they’re basically doing with the newer apartment complexes – apparently 50,000* more people want to move to Boston and have nowhere to live. Where I live, there are some buildings, and some multi-family houses on my street, which looks nice, and they haven’t bought anyone out to knock it down and build some ugly thing, probably the road is too narrow for a higher capacity of residents just right here, but not around the corner, there are 3 new buildings and plan for several more, then my rent will get too high, and I will need someone to come get me.
          *I may or may not be exaggerating.

        • Greg G.

          Disqus now has those buttons at the bottom of the combox. You can place the cursor where you want in your text, then hit the button to insert the tag and paste into the middle or highlight the text in the combox, then hit the button. The quotation mark is for blockquote.

        • Kodie

          The combox made a 1.5 page quote into a 57-page mess. When I try to work in the combox to remove spaces, the cursor will jump to the end of the post and delete content, or put the tags in the wrong place, even though my cursor is definitely in the right place, like both ends of the tag in front of the highlighted sentence. I tighten up the line breaks and stuff in a short enough post, but as soon as I hit another “helper” in the bottom of the box, it fucks everything up again, spreads everything out and loses my cursor, so whatever action I think I’m going ends up somewhere else. Sometimes it puts the front of the tag at the beginning of the post instead of the beginning of a highlighted area. It’s delightful to see progress in making improvements, but this really sucks a lot.

        • Greg G.

          I think you are trying to copy text from a formatted source. The combox sees the formatting and doesn’t know how to treat all of that mark-up language. Notepad just uses text with no mark-up language so you get what you see. With Word, you get a lot of stuff you don’t want and you can’t see it.

          Try dragging and dropping a Word file into Notepad and you will see some of the hidden stuff, then look for the actual text.

        • Kodie

          No, I’m saying I copied the combox into Word, it was too unwieldy in the combox, and Word said it was 57 pages long, 536 words.

        • Greg G.

          I have never done that. Word is great for fancy documents, not so good for plain text.

        • Kodie

          It didn’t fuck anything up that wasn’t already fucked up, but it might have added even more paragraph padding. Once it looked straightened out, it fucked up again when I pasted it in the combox. When I pasted it into Notepad++ from Word, it didn’t look fucked up because it didn’t look fucked up in Word. It was immediately ready for the combox without anything added. I did later edit, because I noticed when I took the paragraph padding out in Word, the paragraph returns were little bigger than a regular line return, even though in Word, it was a full height return, so I fixed it in case anyone actually wanted to read it.

        • Ignorant Amos

          I read it all. It would have been rude not to.

          Perhaps we’ll look back at all the things we have been talking about and declare them social errors history will condemn us for, who knows.

          I’ve done quite a bit of Interstate driving in the US…Florida. Scenery nice enough in most parts.

        • Greg G.

          The most scenic part of driving on a Florida Interstate is a highway overpass.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Woah…the area around St. Augustine is alright…and Kennedy Space Centre…though it really depends on what ta fuck one is used to…and what ta fuck one deems scenic.

          Driving across an African plain is scenic….apparently.

        • Greg G.

          https://www.blueridgeparkway.org/ especially when the leaves are changing.

        • Ignorant Amos

          That looks the ticket.

          The I 295 over the St Johns river…and the I 95 between Jax and Orlando were regulars of mine.

        • Greg G.

          I have been sent to Ft Myers for work a few times. Once I had to fly into Tampa and drive down the Gulf coast while watching the sun set. I honeymooned in Miami and have gone there for work a couple of times. I got sent to Orlando for work once and we vacationed there later. We had planned to go to the ocean beach one day but the weather forecast sent us to Clearwater.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Everglades?….the fact that it’s flat is something on it’s own.

        • Greg G.

          I’ve done that in an airboat.

        • Sample1

          Lots of ideas out there about what kinds of scenery appeal to many people and why. Lush and novel seem to be inescapable universals. Arguably they appeal to our evolutionary roots where lush often meant food sources and novel meant exploration.

          It’s seems most astronauts find being in orbit breathtaking. Space isn’t lush, but it is exploration and I suppose looking at the planet as our sustainer for life is analogous to seeing food.

          I can usually find something good to say about any landscape from deserts to the alpine. And in Alaska it’s hard not to find beauty. But I will say this, having spent a few weeks at the top of North America (Barrow, AK) during February it’s a place in Alaska I have zero desire to return to. Flat, with a frozen ocean before it and the epitome of desolation where venturing too far from shelter turned you into a lush and novel food source for white bears.

          Haha.

          Mike, excommunicated
          (No offense to the few thousand permanent residents and Alaskan Natives who have their own culture in Barrow. It’s just not mine).

        • Ignorant Amos

          I didn’t think much of the scenery of the Falklands during my stay there…not a tree in sight other than the couple growing in Port Stanley.

          https://d32r1sh890xpii.cloudfront.net/article/270×200/4e6b2010ee98319ebe58a331de2e11b9.jpg

          The scenery around here can be quite enjoyable. Those that watch GoT will be aware of this, many of the filming locations are local.

          https://visitbelfast.com/ideas/pages/blog/articles/game-of-thrones-filming-locations-belfast-northern-ireland

        • Sample1

          Ireland and the UK have stunning landscapes. Never been to Ireland though. On my list, some friends keep trying to arrange a trip but can’t pull it off yet.

          I know a guy who served in the Falklands. Scottish. He’s quite the human being. Has lived here for around 25yrs, semi retired now. Small world. Would be wild if you knew him. Alan McPherson. (I’ll delete the name after a while).

          I still haven’t watched GOT. I’m apparently an anomaly. When it came out I had just finished watching Rome (excellent) and was kind of looking for something else not knowing GOT is nothing like Rome. I’ll binge watch it eventually. My friend was disappointed with yesterday’s episode. I’ve heard it was good though. To each their own.

          Cheers mate

          Mike, excommunicated

        • Ignorant Amos

          On my list, some friends keep trying to arrange a trip but can’t pull it off yet.

          At least it’s on yer list.

          Would be wild if you knew him.

          Can’t say a do. He was likely there with the Scots Guards in the Battle for Mount Tumbledown. Though there were plenty of Jocks serving in other units.

          https://www.thesun.co.uk/archives/news/501068/we-ran-up-that-mountain-with-no-body-armour-no-helmet-no-compensation-if-we-got-hurt-but-id-do-it-again-tomorrow/

          I still haven’t watched GOT. I’m apparently an anomaly.

          Not quite. Most of the lads I drink with haven’t watched an episode either. I suppose it is a genre that you have to be into. Like a taste for Marmite.

          My friend was disappointed with yesterday’s episode. I’ve heard it was good though. To each their own.

          It airs here at 2:00 am, so it is recorded to watch later. No spoilers thank you.

        • Sample1

          I’ll ask him next time I see him. Thanks for that article. I thought he was in the Royal Navy.

          No spoilers from me, sorry to hint at one. Similarly, I really got on another friend’s shit list totally by accident Saturday.

          Went to see Endgame. Was already inside getting food and saw a friend getting tickets to see it too. I invited him earlier but wasn’t sure if he’d make it. Well, it was packed and no chance of sitting near each other so I went in. He texted me he got the tickets. Didn’t see him and just figured we’d meet up afterwards.

          When the movie ended I texted him what I thought about it and asked what he thought. Turns out he was only buying tickets to see the movie later. Spoiled it for him big time. Felt awful but it was such an odd occurrence, I saw him there so just figured…

          Ugh. Thanks for the reminder.

          Mike, excommunicated

        • Ignorant Amos

          I thought he was in the Royal Navy.

          Could well have been. I presumed he was army when ya alluded to the possibility I might’ve knew him.

          No spoilers from me, sorry to hint at one.

          Coincidentally, the daughter and son-in-law have just called in to pick up the grand wee’ns on their way home from work. He said a work colleague had seen it and reckoned it was awesome. So I spent no time in pointing to what your friend reckoned…the excitement quickly left his face.

          Similarly, I really got on another friend’s shit list totally by accident Saturday.

          I don’t take anything that seriously.

          Ugh. Thanks for the reminder.

          Ha! I believe there is an illegal 5 minute pirate trailer for Endgame doing the rounds and it is full of spoilers. The movies studio have released a warning to folk not to watch it or risk completely ruining the film experience for themselves.

        • Greg G.

          Word does a lot of formatting. Disqus likes plain text and allows some HTML. Use Notepad to type.

        • Kodie

          Can I use Notepad++?

        • Greg G.

          Probably. I think Word has a “Copy as text” or “Copy as Plain Text” option that omits the embedded code. I hate waiting for Word documents to open at work because it takes so long for Word to process all the add-ins I never use. If it is information I am likely to need frequently, I paste it into a text file and open it with Notepad.

        • Kodie

          I know word likes to automatically do some shit, but I thought I took out the line breaks and paragraph stuff that was double-spacing… looks like it needed a couple more breaks to read well, but ah. It has a lot of html that seems to want to break the post. The double blockquotes worked, but fyi, if you try to blockquote something, and then hightlight it again (in disqus) to blockquote for a second tier, it will take away the blockquotes.

          This is a test.

          If you want to requote yourself or someone else, highlight just the quoted text again.

        • Greg G.

          The double blockquotes worked, but fyi, if you try to blockquote something, and then hightlight it again (in disqus) to blockquote for a second tier, it will take away the blockquotes.

          You can blockquote the text, then blockquote the text again not including the blockquote tags, it will double blockquote.

        • MR

          Late to the game, but yes. I prefer it over Notepad.

        • Kodie

          It worked just fine – I have it on my taskbar, but wasn’t sure it would work the same as normal MS Windows notepad.

        • MR

          In some cases it actually works better. Regular Notepad sometimes keeps or adds one of the end of line codes. Notepad++ is a bit overkill, but has some nice features.

          Greg, I’m surprised you don’t use it. You might check it out.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          From my cold dead fingers.

      • eric

        Yes that’s true. OTOH I doubt sport driving or racing will disappear…just as people still ride horses for sport, I expect even if we were to go to the extreme of road driving being made illegal, people would still practice it as a hobby.

        • Greg G.

          There might be a few hard-core racing enthusiasts but virtual racing might be even better.

        • Doubting Thomas

          I would doubt this. For the racers there’s the feeling of the forces of driving and for the spectators there’s the aspect of risk that will probably keep actual racing alive and well.

        • Ignorant Amos

          I think the point of the OP is to hypothesize what will float the boat of the populace tomorrow. Mind you, with electric car performance stepping up, who knows? Maybe lev anti-gravity car racing or such like tech might takeover. The console game “Wipeout” was/is popular afaicr….the real thing , even more so.

          Rope climbing and would you believe the more recent solo synchronized swimming, were once Olympic sports?

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          A guy with a stock Tesla is already winning drag races.

          Here’s a link to some videos:

          https://www.google.com/search?q=drag+racing+with+a+tesla&rlz=1C1GGRV_enUS798US799&oq=drag+racing+with+a+tesla&aqs=chrome..69i57.6320j0j1&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

        • Ignorant Amos

          Aye…a seen Chris Harris on Top Gear drag racing a Porsche 911 with a Tesla…it smashes it all the way up to around 130 mph or so. Some acceleration for a car run by battery. But as far as I remember, that’s all it could do…a one trick pony Chris called it. Not much cop for circuit racing.

        • Joe

          There’s already a Formula 1 E-sports competition. It’s one way of identifying future real-world driving talent.

        • NS Alito

          Aye, like car aficionado Jay Leno who drives an EV for general transportation and goes out in one of the collectible ICE vehicles for entertainment.

      • kenofken

        I think we’ve already come a long way on the DUI issue. We have far fewer DUI deaths than when we started getting serious about the issue in the 1980s. That’s been the result of stricter laws, but also changes in social attitudes. It used to be considered funny or harmless to drive home blasted and brag about how you turfed your own lawn and couldn’t even remember how you got there. In most circles, it’s considered really uncool these days.

        • Attitudes toward smoking have changed as well.

        • kenofken

          Oh definitely, and all to the good. I’m old enough to remember when smoking was allowed in hospitals! Now you can’t even smoke outdoors in many locations. I don’t miss it at all. I can tolerate people vaping to a point, but that will likely prove problematic too.

          I’m not opposed to drug use per se, but I don’t know how anyone thought it was a good idea to deliberately inhale a stew of combustion chemicals all the time. I guess it’s like asbestos baby carriages or washing one’s hands in benzene every day at the printing plant. It must have seemed like a good idea at the time :/

        • Michael Newsham

          My high school was considered very cool and progressive because half the cafeteria was a smoking section.

    • kenofken

      I would argue that by not recognizing polygamous relationships, and in fact actively prosecuting them does nothing to prevent them. It does, however, strip victims of any visibility or legal recourse. The abusive guys just move farther into the bush, condition their wives to fear the authorities and carry on. The wives have no rights within the marriage because officially it can’t exist.

      Then too, polyamory these days is much wider than splinter Mormons amassing young wives in the desert. There are far more secular, liberal Christian and Pagan people entering these relationships, and doing so on equal terms. Not a few of them involve women with two or more male and female partners. Not all of them will want formal marriage arrangements, but I think over time plenty will, especially those who make a full time life together, share households etc.

      I hear the objection put forward that multiple partner marriages would create impossibly complex legal problems, but I think it’s well within our scope to work those out. If lawyers can work out multilateral trade agreements and massive corporate mergers, I think they can come up with something for polygamy. At a basic level, it might just mean dividing up assets by 3 or 4 instead of two. Not a difficult mathematical operation. It will always have real number solutions.

      • eric

        I would argue that by not recognizing polygamous relationships, and in

        fact actively prosecuting them does nothing to prevent them.

        I disagree both in general and in the specific case. I think it is very often the case that making something illegal reduces the number of people who do that act or the prevalence at which they do it. This is true even for such mundane cases as speeding: reduce the speed limit, and the extent of speeding goes down. It doesn’t drop to zero, no, but in the speeding case, for instance, people adjust their speed based on the limit. Likewise (and without any hard data), I’m guessing there’s a lot more pot smoking per capita going on in Colorado now that it’s legal than there was 10-20 years ago. Yes, lots of people flout the law, especially if some important value is at stake. But a lot of people don’t – and it’s those people who will choose differently depending on whether some act is legal or illegal.

        And I think in the case of polygamy this is true, as IMO many law-abiding Mormons would probably start practicing it if the US made it legal and then their church had a ‘revelation’ that it was again theologically correct.

        There are far more secular, liberal Christian and Pagan people entering these relationships, and doing so on equal terms.

        I don’t dispute that it can be done fairly and for the benefit of all involved. What I’m arguing is that empiricism and case history show that the prevalence of abuse in such arrangements is something we should not ignore when considering it legal. There is also abuse in monogamous relationships too. And there can be peer pressure in monogamous societies to conform, just as there can be peer pressure in polygamous ones to conform. Arranged marriages between families is a good example of a strong, concerning peer pressure that occurs in some monogamous societies. But having said that, I think we have good empirical evidence that there is a significant difference of degree of abuse. If you want to think about it in mathematical terms, both monogamous and polygamous marriages may show a distribution, with one tail being “highly beneficial” and the other being “highly abusive.” While both distributions have tails in both categories, the polygamous marriage distribution is shifted towards the abuse side – and this is empirical information we should not ignore when considering its legality.

        I’m not entirely opposed to it, if it makes you feel better. I’d probably be okay with legalizing polygamy with a much higher age requirement than monogamy. Say, 30 instead of the current 16-18 (yeah I know, it varies from state to state). The higher age limit would prevent male abusers from using ‘marriage’ to practice child abuse. It would prevent grooming of young women to not be able to anything but marry, and would help (but never entirely!) ensure that the people who join such relationships have the maturity and practical work experience needed to walk away from the relationship if needed. It would help ensure nobody gets trapped, IOW.

        • Greg G.

          And I think in the case of polygamy this is true, as IMO many law-abiding Mormons would probably start practicing it if the US made it legal and then their church had a ‘revelation’ that it was again theologically correct.

          Asia had polygamy for a long time. After WWII, the French regained control of Vietnam and outlawed polygamy with extant polygamous marriages grandfathered in. But it didn’t stop them. It changed the balance of power to the women because if the man wasn’t fair, one wife could turn him in to the officials, so it became more desirable for the wives.

          After the American war, there was a big difference in the gender balance. Polygamy became popular for the women to share a husband.

        • Kodie

          With respect to the law – I don’t think it’s the case that polyamorous people have been breaking the law by marrying more than one person. Just like in the past, when it was common for gay couples to have an unofficial ceremony and wedding reception, I don’t think any of them are trying to sneak in, but form committed families that just aren’t legally recognized, and it’s not against the law to do that. I don’t know of any cases (though there may be), where someone in a gay couple pretended to be the opposite sex (not the same as trans, but that could also happen) so the government would legally recognize their marriage, and as for trans, that is not pretending, but if they could break the law by forging documents prior to current state-variable standards of trans recognition, and get a legal marriage, while documenting illegally which would nullify the marriage if found out. So it makes me think, if anyone did that before, how they would marry legally if the government already thought they were. Would they be punished if they confessed to get it formally totally legal? Would they have to divorce first and then marry again, which would suck.

          If it’s about the age requirement of marriage, I am against child marriage, but I don’t really see a distinction between a man marrying one 14-year-old or two, as there seems to be no prohibition against forming a cult! He can marry one, and that might give her over 30 years to bear children and form a cult, or twice as many in the same amount of time, or 5 or 8 or 20 times as many children…. I feel like there is a breaking point where the cult is destroyed by megalomania and law enforcement, or there has to be a limit to how many he can afford… I mean how can any of these dumb fucks afford that many wives and children, if he won’t let them work (or they’re too young to get a work permit, or can’t get hired because they’re pregnant), what do any of them actually do for a living and why do they need so many wives and children? Let’s put that in the DSM-VI and make that shit way illegal.

      • Kodie

        What is confusing to me, and I guess there are answers, what if a guy had a wife and a husband, but his wife was not married to his husband? But each the wife and the other husband could marry another someone, still without marrying each other, or separately marrying other mates who are not married to the first husband? Do you know what I mean? If someone joins a polyamorous group, is it the whole group? I imagine people have their own preferences and allowances. How do you get someone out of your group if they betrayed one of the group? What if they get outvoted and they get broken off the group? I think about this because divorce between a couple is already messy, but doesn’t need to be, and then each spouse may remarry, have other children, divorce again, so they share some children and some spouses… .not necessarily in a sexual way, but they share childcare with the new spouse, and on some level, have to trust them, and it’s a weird, complicated family that some find harder to manage than others, not least of all because feelings get hurt, but say you give one wife a diamond ring, and another one a blouse, and a 3rd one a restaurant gift certificate so she can go on a special date with her other husband, and how does that other husband feel about that?

        I am not sure the legal issues could be worked out, but I also can’t see people who want to live this way, according to whatever standards and preferences they have or agree to live by, pretending to be something they’re not (like gay people marrying straight like homophobes keep saying they are entitled to do). With or without legality, people are allowed to shack up in whatever arrangement they please. Relationships like this are weird because romance is weird, and people are weird, and the more people you add into the group, the exponential probability of hurt feelings, resentment, secrecy, distrust, and jealousy that is normal when you share a partner or see someone get more attention than you think you do, or someone doesn’t do their share around the house. I can’t see enforcing a group to be totally together or nothing, like the A family, everyone married to A also has to be legally married to each other, and if A marries B without the rest of his group, that’s legally sort of a bigamy that’s against the law. What if people want to live more chain-like as I’ve described than in a clump? Is any of this a little too far to go, or is it whatever anyone wants to do? Is there a limit on the size of the group or the size of the chain?

        And would bigamy still be against the law? Aren’t there famous cases or at least one fictional novel that I know of, where a man travels for a living, meets different women everywhere, and marries all of them? Is it against the law if they don’t know about each other? And mainly that polygamists in the traditional sense of a man collecting many wives, while the wives seem to get along and defend the situation, I don’t think they are married to each other because that would be gay, and they don’t have sex with each other, they just share the husband, but he doesn’t allow them to marry other husbands and collect husbands in a similar way. Would that be illegal or legal?

        • Greg G.

          One of the Star Trek spinoffs had an alien character in such a marriage.

        • Kodie

          Then what happened? I can imagine being involved with a person who was interested in other people, but I am not really that interested in that many other people, and I could hypothetically hate the person I was interested in not for cheating on me but because that other person was so annoying, how could you! How could I spend my life with someone who liked that person I hate!

          But it would normally be seen I was jealous because how could you be involved with someone else at the same time as me, or try to convince me that was cool, and I wanted to be cool too, so as raised as the woman I am, I would try to convince myself that this arrangement my polyamorous boyfriend wanted was what I wanted. I can’t push for polyamory so far as any woman or man or they, because they were raised not only by their parents but by societal expectations of their born sex… traditional heterosexual marriage is not without its domination by men over women, but every relationship I’ve ever had has overwhelmed my feminist urge to stand up for myself and find an equal partner – there just aren’t that many of them to go around. Most guys are ignorant privileged and insecure in their own ways to dominate or be seen as inferior and called a “cunt” like in some other post.

          But I have to also step out of the way, because some men and women and other men and other women can all get along in a tangled relationship without me worrying that anyone is exploited or doing the exploiting. Break in to this point, the wealthy man I know who denies climate change (if you want that old story I have already posted, please let me know) is helpless as a man, basically an entitled douche with no shame how his wife carries his menial life tasks, and yet he wouldn’t say he’s exploited her, and I don’t know if she would say she’s exploited him for his money. There’s like this thing, he’s stuck in the past a lot, and his perspective of life is so different from a middle-class or poor person, so he’s basically a pure sexist with no idea that he’s doing it, or any worry that it might be a problem, and most men I observe, maybe also because of his money, laugh at his awkward jokes, and don’t do any fucking thing to stand up for anyone that guy might have insulted, like women or immigrants, or this boy he thinks is a girl, because some boys have long hair like in the 70s. Except me, and I’m not that successful at arguing in real time.

          Ha ha, one of the Star Trek spinoffs had an alien polyamorous character, and I went on another tangent!

        • Greg G.

          I believe they didn’t have an episode on it. (The name “Phlox” just came to ming.) He would just discuss his marriage occassionally.

          Incidentally, that actor and the actor who played a hologram doctor on a different spinoff appeared on “The Orville” recently. Marina Sirtis (Lt. Troi on ST: TNG played a teacher more recently.

  • Brian Davis

    Maybe they will marvel that we let every bonehead vote for no better reason than that they were a citizen, with complete disregard to understanding of the issues and mental capability.

    I would love to see how they would justify condemning the literacy tests of the reconstruction South while praising their own “ignorant people who disagree with me shouldn’t be allowed to vote” tests.

  • Lex Lata

    Maybe not within 100 years, but at some point in the not-inconceivable future, our descendants will look back with condescending amusement on what they would consider our (and I include myself here) squeamish caution about the genetic engineering of Homo sapiens. It’s a hotly controversial area in biomedical ethics, but my sense is that we’re looking at an inevitable revolution (assuming no Mad Max-style collapse of civilization). As the tools are made available and more affordable, I expect humanity will increasingly manipulate the next generation’s nucleic acids to not only eliminate heritable diseases and conditions, but also increase life span, optimize various physical characteristics, develop specialized strains for certain roles (super-soldiers, human computers, etc.), and otherwise re-code the species. Within a few centuries, those of us gravely pondering the moral and social implications will sound like those old-timey doctors who warned that traveling by steam locomotive would destroy women’s reproductive organs.
    http://mentalfloss.com/article/67806/early-trains-were-thought-make-womens-uteruses-fly-out

    • kenofken

      I used to be all for genetic engineering to advance life spans. Now, I’m not so sure. I suspect what will happen is that it will greatly reinforce economic disparities. You’ll have 1 percenters who live 200 years or whatever and a massive underclass with life spans of 50 or worse who live little better than slaves.

      • Kodie

        Well, it will be very expensive at first, but then it will be ubiquitous. What is freaky to me, is engineering breeds of humans turns them into slaves. There is a demand for human computers, more people will take that option, and enslave their child to a live with no choice of becoming anything. It’s just like, if you demand your child be a doctor, one of the most prestigious professions, and their life feels crushing with the desire to study history and make films unless Ken Burns lives in a jar, then what would be the point of trying. It’s one thing to pressure a child to live their life doing something they don’t want to do, but they could break free and choose their own destiny. If you genetically engineer all children to want to be doctors (if something that specific is possible), but also genetically engineering out disease, and making life span longer, and all the other things you want, why would we even need that many doctors? But they want to be doctors! It’s like, well, now there are no artists or authors or actors, or basketball players. These doctors are like that, but they can’t break free of their destiny. Instead of rebelling against parental pressure and having dreams, they are programmed to desire a prosperous path in life, and can’t settle for something else.

        I think this will make a lot more suicides.

  • Grimlock

    […] future Americans […]

    Perhaps they will have dispensed with the idea of nations.

    • I’ve heard speculation about future city-states, as in days of yore.

      • Ignorant Amos

        Mega cities as per Judge Dredd?

    • Ignorant Amos

      One word….Brexit.

  • igotbanned999

    Letting those irrational meatbags run things instead of super intelligent AIs.

  • Rudy R

    Maybe they will laugh at our prudishness about sex on television but be disgusted at our appetite for violence.

    Europeans are already laughing at our prudishness and disgusted by our love of violence.

    I predict gun ownership will eventually lose its utility as an acceptable defense measure and will be looked on with utter horror that humans allowed so many preventable deaths to accidental and arbitrary killings. Abortions will also be universally illegal. For both these predictions, technology will be the activation.

    • Doubting Thomas

      What technology would you foresee making abortion illegal?

      • Rudy R

        The ability to abort the fetus without ending it’s life and sustain it unitl it’s capable of living on it’s own.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          In which case it might be the god-botherers who open up abortion clinics, so thy can collect and raise all those feti.

        • Carol Lynn

          Is every egg collected and fertilized? Every shed skin cell cloned? If not think of the waste of potential life! This could easily become a nightmare scenario of 99% of the economy focused on birthing. How is this sustainable either?

        • Rudy R

          I’m referring to a fetus, not a fertilized egg .

        • Carol Lynn

          What criteria are you using to decide on that? You say that no intervention can be done until *after* the egg has developed for 8 weeks or more? (Words mean things: fertilized egg – blastocyst – embryo – fetus) Are you then fine with ending development before it is at the fetus stage?

        • Rudy R

          I’m not intimating any timeframe…that would be left up to future generations. I would think that would be decided by the women when she schedules an abortion.

        • Carol Lynn

          Make up your mind. Is abortion is a crime in your utopia or not?

        • Kodie

          So does she have consent or what? If she wants to not be pregnant, will she have a choice? I don’t understand clinging to the sanctity of life of a non-sentient clump of cells, and hell if this thing has to live in this fucked up universe where you can steal fetuses if I can prevent it, and hell if someone else gets to raise it if I can’t. You can’t steal something from my body and make it into something for your use. I don’t know what you’re going to do with it or who you’re going to give it to!!!! THAT IS FUCKING HORRIFYING!

        • Carol Lynn

          I hate to rain on your utopia, but … I strongly object to your insisting that abortion will be “universally illegal”. I can see working towards making it universally unnecessary (either better birth control, better education and support, or technology that supports a fetus outside the womb. Have you considered that sometimes things go wrong and that fetus, even outside the womb, may not be viable or it may be a kindness to make sure it is not born?) but making abortion always a crime under any circumstances seems quite sexist and regressive.

        • Rudy R

          I think your missing the point of this thought experiment. You are using present day moral intuitions.

        • Carol Lynn

          No. I’m not ‘missing the point” – you are the one using current day morality to insist that the most utopian outcome is that abortion must be criminalized. I’m pretty sure I understand what you are intending; everyone will prefer to simply hand over an unwanted embryo to an artificial womb – which has its own issues. Although why that should be preferable to working towards a utopia where having that egg be fertilized in the first place only when it is wanted and is without serious genetic errors is a mystery to me.

        • Rudy R

          Although why that should be preferable to working towards a utopia where having that egg be fertilized in the first place only when it is wanted and is without serious genetic errors is a mystery to me.

          I agree that fertilizing an egg only when wanted and without genetic error is preferable over aborting a fetus.

        • Carol Lynn

          And yet you have not retracted your opinion that criminalizing abortion *in all circumstances* is the utopia we ought to be working towards.

          Feh! [take that as a general sound of disgust]

        • Kodie

          Still punishing women for being sexual.

        • Kodie

          What the fuck moral intuitions are you using? You sound like enslaving women even more and stealing from them.

          There is nothing wrong with abortion, nothing. I would LOVE to live in a world where abortions are nothing but a thing, where people don’t get hysterical, or emotional or sentimental like you are over nothing.

          I would like the right side of history to be where women don’t have to be ashamed of having an abortion, or shamed out of having an abortion, because people won’t be so sentimental hoarding fuckers who think they can mine women’s uteruses to create more useless fucking humans that aren’t actually required to exist any more than every egg I’ve shed monthly since I was 12.

          You are using PAST DAY moral intuitions and not thinking this through.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Yeah…that sounds better.

          Maybe there’ll come a time when only those that opt in can become pregnant and no pregnancy will come with a possible downside making the subject of a termination moot.

          Well, we are dreaming here, are we not?

        • Kodie

          Why would we need to do that?

    • Ignorant Amos

      Europeans are already laughing at our prudishness and disgusted by our love of violence.

      Prudishness yes, disgusted at violence, not so much. Then there is the “shock” at the profanity use of the word “cunt”….which is funny in its own right.

      The gun thing yes, the abortion thing no, unless a redefinition of the word occurs. The technology bit, yes.

      • Then there is the “shock” at the profanity use of the word “cunt”.

        But the word means different things in the UK and US, right?

        • Ignorant Amos

          I guess so…though my point being, in the future, folk might look back and wonder what all the fuss was about.

          It’s all about context. It can range from extreme derision to a term of endearment here. The later usually being applied only to someone that is familiar to the caller.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cunt#Other_meanings

          It is gender neutral in Europe and Australia, but many in the US still have a hang-up, as in it being applied in a misogynist usage. We use it in the same way that youse apply the word “dick”.

          It has popular use among popular stand-up comedians here in the UK. The funniest use I’ve seen recently was on Ricky Gervais’ new series “Afterlife” on Netflix…a nearly pished maself laughing.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XXMhny4JmtY

          I’ve noticed it creeping into US usage more and more. Game of Thrones for example. Though it has been frequently used as far back as Deadwood. Though, as I’ve noted before, the usage in Deadwood was for intended for shock value anachronistically, because the real profane language of the 1860’s is actually lame by today’s standards. The use of the word in both series is that of this side of the pond.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYHY19T1GiU

        • Sample1

          Gervais is hilarious and his use of the word works perfectly in that scenario. That’s comedy.

          But the Deadwood use, still arresting. I know, I know, I’m just a product of my culture here, cut me some slack. But gotta tell ya, I haven’t heard the word that many times in almost as many years. Less than once a year irl, I’d say, but maybe it’s becoming more common in cities? Maybe I’m wrong but it seems to have a connection over here to a generation where it meant a violent misogynistic put down against women?

          I don’t care if the word is used, just saying it still makes quite the, ahem, statement over here. Hell, I’ve played sports much of my life and can’t ever recall it being used even in a hockey locker room.

          But tubby, ginger c—t. Lmao.

          Mike

        • Ignorant Amos

          Gervais is hilarious and his use of the word works perfectly in that scenario. That’s comedy.

          My point about Gervais…and other popular comedians here today, are more readily using the word which is popular at street level, when not all that long ago, it would not have been acceptable. Certainly not in the on screen media.

          I saw Gervais in Belfast on his “Humanity” tour last year and he was hilarious, though that appearance was not without controversy.

          Maybe I’m wrong but it seems to have a connection over here to a generation where it meant a violent misogynistic put down against women?

          Not wrong at all. But folk shouldn’t be stuck with that definition. It means different things depending on which source one reads and in what country one resides…and the context it is getting used.

          Like I say, where it is non-gender specific, it isn’t such a big deal. An alternative to “dickhead” for all the same usages, derogatory through to neutral to a positive qualifier.

          I don’t care if the word is used, just saying it still makes quite the, ahem, statement over here. Hell, I’ve played sports much of my life and can’t ever recall it being used even in a hockey locker room.

          It would appear its usage varies widely even within the US. It is very popular in Maine by the looks of things. Where as another word with once understood as having misogynistic connotations, “bitch”, has now become a popular gender neutral swear word in the US, particularly in the south.

          https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/jul/17/map-curse-words-united-states-shit-asshole-fuck-fuckboy

          But tubby, ginger c—t. Lmao.

          Which wasn’t without complaint from some eejits that were put firmly into their boxes by the child actors mother.

          As an example of the word used differently, elsewhere Gervais’ character says this about his friend and work colleague…

          “a fat cunt eating like a fucking slug”

          Thing is, having been in that exact dark place the central character of the comedy is in, and having taken the same recourse, attempted suicide, drink, drugs, couldn’t give a hit attitude to everything, I could relate to much of what was the message. But rather than getting me down, I was able to laugh at how silly I’d been. The series is genius.

        • ildi

          It would appear its usage varies widely even within the US. It is very popular in Maine by the looks of things. Where as another word with once understood as having misogynistic connotations, “bitch”, has now become a popular gender neutral swear word in the US, particularly in the south.

          Ah, the “everybody is saying it/being called it so no longer misogynistic” argument.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Nope…not at all. I was just pointing out to Mike that while where he is, it might be as rare as hen’s teeth, but in other places, not so much.

          I’ve no no need for such argument or to defend my usage of the word, because where I live, the word is already defined. And the definition is not that of a misogynistic nature. Even in the definition of vulgar slang. But more of the an unpleasant or stupid person nature.

          No one owns the word, and words are defined by their use in common parlance. That common parlance for me, is well defined in the Wiki article below.

          As a broader derogatory term, it is comparable to prick and means “a fool, a dolt, an unpleasant person – of either sex”. This sense is common in New Zealand, British, and Australian English, where it is usually applied to men as referring specifically to “a despicable, contemptible or foolish” man.

          https://www.google.com/search?q=cunt&rlz=1C1CHBF_enGB797GB797&oq=cunt&aqs=chrome.0.69i59j69i61j69i60l2j0l2.3212j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

          Anyway, as the saying goes…“The United States and Great Britain are two countries separated by a common language.”

        • ildi

          I’ve no no need for such argument or to defend my usage of the word, because where I live, the word is already defined. And the definition is not that of a misogynistic nature.

          This blog isn’t parochial, though.

        • Ignorant Amos

          That’s correct.

          Which is why when the odd time I use the word, am careful enough to make it apparent exactly how the word is being applied and it’s context….as is the other Brit here that has used the term.

          I’m sure Bob would be on me like a ton of bricks otherwise.

          But as far as this OP goes. I was merely pointing out how things change.

          Not so long ago, the word was taboo in Britain at anything above street level and not because it was misogynistic. Mind you, so was fuck. Now we even have royalty saying fuck in public. Both these words having been permitted and used on US television and big screen well before us Brits got a taste, but then at street level, it was taboo in the US.

          Taking the sexist use back from the arseholes is a better way forward in my opinion. But, hey ho…we’ll see.

          My point being, what once shocked, not so much today. So in the future, will we be locking back and wondering what all the fuss was about? On the other hand, the converse applies to the “N” word…go figure.

        • ildi

          I’m sure Bob would be on me like a ton of bricks otherwise.

          Bob’s house, Bob’s rules. Whatever your intent in usage, however, every time you use the C word my U.S. brain hears the equivalent of the N word. Just sayin’

        • Ignorant Amos

          Given it’s increasing use in the non-misogynistic definition, i.e. equivalent to “prick” or “dickhead”, that is going to be problematic for you going forward.

          Especially if more of these empowering women get their ways…

          Semantically, it serves the same function as “dick” or “prick” – a signifier for a sexual organ which can also be used as a descriptor or insult, a word that is not passive, but active, even aggressive.

          https://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/laurie-penny/2011/02/sexual-power-word-cunt-hint

          …which am all for btw.

        • ildi

          I guess you’re missing the point that the word is for THESE EMPOWERING WOMEN to reclaim just like N word is for blacks to reclaim. I don’t find it problematic at all avoiding being a sexist asshat.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Except it isn’t being a sexist asshat, and these empowering women are not using the word or reclaiming it as you imagine…or didn’t you read the article?

          Here, let me help…

          For me, “cunt” is, and will always be, a word of power, whether it denotes my own genitals or any obstreperous comrades in the vicinity. The first time I ever used it, I was 12 years old, and being hounded by a group of sixth-form boys who just loved to corner me on the stairs and make hilarious sexy comments. One day, one of them decided it would be funny to pick me up by the waist and shake me. I spat out the words “put me down, you utter cunt”, and the boy was so shocked that he dropped me instantly.

          That you are entrenched in the narrow meaning of the word and are stuck there, will undoubtedly be a problem.

        • ildi

          Where we differ is if I know a word causes offense I just quit using it rather than digging deeper to explain they they are wrong.

        • ildi

          Also, did you miss this part of the article, which made my point?

          Ever since then, “cunt” has been a cherished part of my lexical armour. I use it liberally: in conversation, in the bedroom, and in debates. I only wish I could hear more women [emphasis mine] saying it, more of us reclaiming “cunt” as a word of sexual potency and common discourse rather than a dirty, forbidden word.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Well, if you really think that comment makes yer point that the word is a sexist misogynist word in this context…all I can say is, whateva!

        • ildi

          The only reason I went down this path is that I think you comment thoughtfully and creatively but this is just one of those words that has such strong connotations for some people in the U.S. that I wanted to make sure you were aware of that when you chose it and if you are then your words and intentions match and I will keep that in mind for future reference! That’s all I’ve got to say about that…

        • Kodie

          Wow, she shamed him by calling him a female body part! It is the same (and I understand it means cigarette in Britain), but calling someone a fag as though there is something wrong with being gay, or someone a cunt as though there were nothing awesome about having a vagina, that’s empowering because some woman condoned it to you, so you’re allowed to say it?

        • Kodie

          Bob isn’t on even the worst troll like a ton of bricks, he loves it when I come back and use my foul language!

        • Kodie

          Nope. A prick or a dick is someone who, like a man, feels entitled and does some offensive aggressive attack, and if you think women might feel entitled, we call them spoiled, but feel free to call them a dick or a prick. Mostly I use that against someone who is really oppressive against me as a woman because they’re a sexist, or people who cut me off in traffic, which is aggressive and dangerous, and mostly in my head, because I dare not call a man in power an insult, for which he would be proud of, by the way. He is being insulted by a woman (me) for qualities he is socially rewarded for having, so it’s almost a badge. A bitch or a cunt is someone who either uses guile! to trick you because you’re a man and you thought you were dominant and no one was smarter than you are, so you cry out bitch or cunt, because you’re too much of a fucking baby to handle a female human being smart enough to best you, which a man would never call another man, unless he deemed that other man inferior or feminine, i.e, a label of toxic masculinity to call a man some female insult like pussy, cunt, or bitch, etc. If you are a man calling a woman these things for her being assertive, etc., chances are she’s still inferior to you, can’t do anything else about it, or tries to be nicer to get your approval, and undercuts her own qualities. I wish it weren’t that way, but it is.

          So stop defending cunt.

        • Kodie

          You know what else is popular in Maine? The mailboxes are hung by chains on poles! In the rest of suburban America, mailboxes are on top of posts, because in most places in America, bored motherfuckers aren’t bashing mailboxes out of car windows with a baseball bat out of sheer boredom and motherfuckery.

        • Kodie

          It would appear its usage varies widely even within the US. It is very
          popular in Maine by the looks of things. Where as another word with once
          understood as having misogynistic connotations, “bitch”, has now become
          a popular gender neutral swear word in the US, particularly in the
          south.

          Bitch isn’t gender-neutral. It, like cunt or pussy, means to behave like a woman, a hysterical, judgmental, or angry woman, i.e, a selective, assertive, or confident woman, but with pejorative connotations. Still. Women cannot behave anything like a man in America without pejorative comparisons, while a man is confident or assertive, a woman is a bitch, shrill, too angry, feminazi, etc. You don’t get it, stop trying to mansplain it. Maybe women in the UK think cunt is gender-neutral, but that is like calling someone the n-word and what the fuck do you think the etymology of the comparison of that word to female objectification is? Yes, everyone in the UK calls everyong a cunt for behaving like X, but what is that behavior you are comparing the cunt to? Is it still sexist when you get down to it?

        • I read an article about intermittent fasting. It said that when a woman does it, it’s dieting, but when a man does it, it’s bio-hacking.

        • Kodie

          I heard it was an eating disorder when women did it.

        • Kodie

          I don”t know if you’d understand that equating something bad with a woman’s body part makes it as sexist as blaming someone from throwing like a girl or calling a boy on boy’s sport team a pussy or wussy. It’s like saying someone is a fag, because there is something inferior about being gay, or someone a n-word because there’s something inferior about being black, or someone a retard to humiliate them compared to someone with a legitimate disability.

          I qualify this all by saying, I do call someone a dick, to equate their action like a male-privilege thing, where what they do is entitled like a dick thinks it has the right to have sex with that cunt, and she’s a bitch if she says no. And because I know men are insecure in their ways, I use my prerogative to shame the size of their penis by suspecting it’s smaller than they want it to be. I don’t know that I am indiscriminate here though. I know a bunch of guys through my work, and teens and younger boys, and they are still being trained to be sexist, and the girls are still being trained to be submissive, but not always necessarily, but the difference is still so distinct. I am thinking of the guys I know who are older than 30, vs. those under 15, it doesn’t give me a lot of hope. It’s still a boys v. girls world, where boys are shamed to dominate, and girls are given honorable mention for trying hard, and it doesn’t have to be that way, but as the woman working at a man-owned workplace serving children in a sport, I am STILL a dominated cunt. I think as a man, despite being a common epithet in UK, you couldn’t understand what it means to a woman to compare a man to a woman’s body part, or to undercut a woman’s strength to undercut her by labeling her her sexual parts.

      • Aram

        Living in Germany myself, I think it’s more the way sex and violence are treated in tandem by Americans that makes for a lot of shaking heads. Show a nipple on screen, for example, and you’re looking at a hard R rating, but feel free to keep that shot of the man getting a bullet to the head. It’s a bizarre juxtaposition.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          4 words:

          Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction.

          The fundy busybodies are STILL in a tizzy about that.

        • Aram

          They say Nipplegate handed Bush the presidency. I’m inclined to agree with them.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Having lived in Germany during the 80’s, early 90’s myself, I know what you mean. A very open attitude to sex and nakedness, with porn more readily available in a time pre-internet, mixed public saunas, and legalized prostitution. While the violence of the war was not to distant in the past to be forgotten for many.

        • Aram

          Indeed, a few visits to the German Therme cured my North American ‘nudity = sex’ affliction tout suite.

        • Kodie

          It’s possibly also that women get blamed for getting raped. There is a whole thing about rape being so wrong! But well, we don’t want thiese innocent men getting punished for taking what they were raised to assume was theirs for the taking, that would be so cruiel to them! Why does she have to be such a bitch, when she was the one who was drinking so much and dressed slutty, etc.? Does it make sense to ruin a young man’s whole prospect and life to accuse him of rape when she was the one who got drunk and should just get over it instead of being such a bitch? MOMS OF BOYS make this argument.

  • RichardSRussell

    Extrapolating from what I see around me of people fixated on their electronic devices, I predict that 50 years from now it will be considered horrifying to interact with another human being face to face.

    • Kodie

      It already is.

  • Pofarmer

    I feel like I had a little minor epiphany today on abortion. Many States are passing “heartbeat” laws, and MO just put it into law making all abortions illegal if Roe is overturned. I don’t think they even think at this point, that these bills will reduce abortions. That’s not what it’s about. It’s about being able to judge. They want to be able to shame, and punish and judge and they want the States sanction to do it.

    • Susan

      I don’t think they even think at this point, that these bills will reduce abortions. That’s not what it’s about

      Of course, it isn’t. It never has been. It’s especially not now, when the evidence shows that it doesn’t reduce abortion.

      It’s about controlling women.

      It’s about reducing human rights for over half the population.

      It’s about being able to judge.

      By creating strawmen. Which is about controlling over half the population.

      They want to be able to shame, and punish and judge

      Which gives them unearned control.

      they want he State’s sanction to do it

      Of course, they do. Political power is control.

      A single cell is a person with rights. A woman is not.

      They don’t make their case. They just use superstition to propagate it.

      They don’t care about reducing abortions at all.

      If they did, they would focus on reducing abortions.

      • Ignorant Amos

        “They” are knuckle-dragging arseholes.

        • Ad hominem. Not helpful.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Go learn the argumentum ad hominem, then come back and explain why you are wrong for a number of reasons, then apologise Mister Philosopher Guy. Or probably not.

        • Max Doubt

          “Ad hominem. Not helpful.”

          Your tone trolling, control freaking incivility knows no bounds. Start your own blog.

        • Kodie

          Vis-a-vis the other posts, asshole is non-sexist as far as I’m concerned. It’s where poo comes out, and everyone has one, but I also wonder if resorting to ‘asshole’ has any slight against anyone who likes butt sex, like it’s an interesting and beautiful hole for some people that I disparage. You can say it ‘arsehole’ but I hate when Americans say things British, and I think, instead of being frustrated that Americans can’t speak English, you should be against pretentious Americans saying things like “arsehole” instead of “asshole”.

          Because I hate the fuck out of that.

        • Susan

          You can say it ‘arsehole’ but I hate when Americans say things British, and I think, instead of being frustrated that Americans can’t speak English, you should be against pretentious Americans saying things like “arsehole” instead of “asshole”.

          I grew up in Scarborough, Ontario (Canada) where “areshole” was as common as “asshole”. There was nothing pretentiously British about it. It was normal here.

        • Cynthia

          Wait, you did?? I had no idea you were also Canadian!

          I had my office at Warden and Eglington in the 1990s so I got to know Scarborough fairly well.

        • Susan

          Removed potentially identifying information

          For the same reason, I didn’t respond with neighbourhoods you and I probably know (or knew) well.

          Sadly, the internet is creepy.

          But I know exactly where you mean.

          🙂

        • Cynthia

          I just think it’s cool, to have something in common. At least if I’m talking about something like multiculturalism, you know where I’m coming from.

        • Michael Murray

          Interesting. As an Australian I use the English spelling. For me it’s always going to be “maths”. That is changing over time as the US dominates the internet and also the TV and movies that the next generation watch. Still nice to see Australians doing something that make us look sophisticated 🙂

        • Kodie

          I found this on the internet that might clarify what the issue is:

          https://dictionary.cambridge.org/pronunciation/english/arsehole

          “Arsehole” is not a natural word in the US, it’s something people picked up mainly from watching British shows that come through on PBS or seen in writing, and don’t know how to pronounce. It’s like saying tomahto to be different. It’s not sophisticated when you do it.

        • Michael Murray

          It’s not sophisticated when you do it.

          Damn.

    • I wonder what fraction of this rationale is conscious and what fraction unconscious. My frequent “Uh, y’know that there’s a better approach, if indeed reducing abortions is your goal” do nothing.

      • Pofarmer

        I’m right there with you Bob. I have tried to have an honest conversation about this on FB with people I know IRL, and all I get is some version of “You’re going to hell.” I can’t even tell if they think their policies will actually reduce abortions or not. I suppose I need to just flat out ask it, and ask what their metric is for showing it? Of course, I haven’t seen the “Pro-life” crowd be big on metrics, either. I mean, certainly it’s driven by Dogma. And, I suppose, if you look at religion as a virus, their ability to actually process anything contrary to their religion is certainly compromised. When I try to promote contraception and birth control education, what I basically get is “Those dirty sluts can get birth control if they want it, it’s every where.” Literally. I’ve been told that. Well, they didn’t write dirty sluts, but it was certainly implied. As a side note, my oldest son is a Student Instructor at the college he is attending for a basic Animal Science (agriculture) class. He says he’s amazed at what kids simply don’t know about reproduction . Reproduction and reproductive physiology is part of the course. We are doing a horrible job in general of teaching about reproduction and anything to do with sexuality in the U.S. And, the sad thing is, the kids out in the general college, that don’t take a course like this, barely get any reproductive education at all. HIgh schools tend to try to avoid it because some parents make it controversial and a lot of Biology 1 courses in high school really don’t get into it deeply enough. We’re just shot through with this religious shit storm right now and it’s killing us. It’s preventing us from making intelligent decisions that benefit our citizens.

        • I wonder if porn is a bellwether here. A subculture that thinks porn being nasty or evil or whatever will also have taboos about sex. But turn this around, and if sex is normal and natural (as shown by a relaxed attitude toward porn), then how sex works (both reproduction and pleasure) will be common knowledge. No embarrassment. That means that young people are well educated about how to get (and not get) pregnant.

        • Pofarmer

          It’s been a while since I’ve read “Sex and God” by Darell Ray. The idea, though, is that if a religion can control sexuality, they can control about anything, since sex is deeply personal, and it seems like one of the main things most religions or cults go for.

        • Ignorant Amos

          And then the “guilt & fear” aspect of the God virus can be applied successfully.

        • Pofarmer

          xactly

        • I suggest that the proper goals should be an overall reduction in the abortion rate any yet an increase in the abortion rate for some kinds of situations. Do you agree? If not, why not?

        • Pofarmer

          This is interesting.

          https://drjengunter.wordpress.com/2012/03/24/what-happens-when-there-is-no-abortion-law/

          In Canada, the teen birth and abortion rate is 27.0/1,000 women between the ages of 15-19 versus 61.2/1,000 in the United States.

          The abortion rate among all women of reproductive age (15-44) in Canada is 14.1/1,000 versus 20/1,000 in the United States.

          Put another way, the teen birth and abortion rate is more than 50%
          higher in the United States versus Canada and the abortion rate is about
          25% higher in the Unites States.

        • And if evidence for actually reducing the abortion rate were relevant, that would be powerful evidence to help the pro-life crowd achieve its stated goals. If only.

        • I’ll just add this quote from the beginning of that article: “There is no abortion law in Canada. It is neither legal nor illegal, it is simply a medical procedure and covered by universal health care.”

          Nice.

        • Aram

          It’s true, and during my indoctrination ACE youth waving placards at the passing cars decrying Abortion is Murder, etc, one of the biggest freak-outs about Canada’s position was that ‘a baby could be legally aborted right up until it’s head begins to crown! Can’t you see this is horrible!?’ Because yeah, going full term then aborting the moment one’s water breaks is just so in vogue – the humanity!

        • Could abortion be murder in some rare circumstances?

        • Aram

          A look through your comments show you to be rather all over the show on your abortion stance. You seem to have convinced yourself that 24 weeks is the magic moment a fetus becomes a human, and as such you’re pro-choice before this magic 24-week moment, and pro-life after it. That’s quite the hard line you’ve drawn in the sand. Glad it works for you, I guess.
          Anyway, to answer your question, no, I don’t think an abortion can be murder. The only time a doctor in Canada would even consider doing such a late-term abortion would be if the mother’s life was in imminent danger.

        • There is no magic moment. It is an actual moment.

          But you are correct that my pro-person stance resembles the pro-choice stance before personhood and the pro-life stance after personhood occurs.

          Can doctors make ethical errors? Are doctors infallible?

          Can pregnant women make ethical errors? Are pregnant women infallible?

          Yes, no, yes, and no.

        • Susan

          Can doctors make ethical errors? Are doctors infallible?

          Can pregnant women make ethical errors? Are pregnant women infallible?

          Can you make ethical errors? Are you infallible?

          Yes and no.

          So, stating what “should” be isn’t very convincing.

          That’s all you’ve done.

          Make your case or go away until you can make it.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Nope.

          It’s called “Child Destruction” in these parts. It applies to the criminal destruction of a viable fetus capable of being born alive. And while it can carry a sentence of life imprisonment, it isn’t murder.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Child_destruction

        • A rose by any other name…

          Yep, I think abortion is murder is some rare circumstances. Of course, it depends on how you define murder. A general definition: Murder is the intentional killing of one person by another person, except for a few specific good reasons.

          If a woman orders an abortion with the intent of killing the fetal person inside her and the abortion is then completed, I think the act is properly considered to be murder in most circumstances, under the general definition of murder.

          Sure, the act may be labeled different things in different jurisdictions.

        • Susan

          I think abortion is murder in some rare circumstances.

          Give me an example.

          Are you familiar with the Violinist Scenario by Judith Jarvis Thomson?

          If a woman orders an abortion with the intent of killing the fetal person inside her

          She is just asking that the {person whose personhood you haven’t established} no longer be able to feed off her body.

          I think the act is properly considered to be murder in most circumstances, under the general definition of murder.

          Then, you need to show that it is murder.

        • Ignorant Amos

          A rose by any other name…

          Oh ffs…that you think that murder and child destruction are the same, demonstrates your problem to everyone here all day long.

          I was going to go a bit Socratic, but you’ve already shown that’d be a waste of time, so I’ll just cut to the chase.

          Murder comes with the mandatory sentence of life imprisonment.

          Child destruction comes with a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

          Now, the difference, while it might seem subtle to you, is actually quite fundamental.

          Someone convicted of murder is under sentence for the rest of their lives. Even when they are released, they are only done so under licence. That means that even after they’ve served a minimum length of time incarcerated, they can be re-interned at the drop of the hat for committing an offence, without a trial.

          Someone convicted of Child Destruction, not so. Once they are out they are free.

          So, Gary gets a 16 year old pregnant on a one night stand and 7 months later, he gets a call to pop round and discuss the future with the girl. This is no good. Gary is married with 3 kids already, a respectable job and he’s a pillar of the community. So he nips over to plead with the girl to seek a termination which he is willing to pay for, and begs her to say nothing to anyone about the matter. The wee girl isn’t playing ball. She’s pro-life ya see. So Gary in a fit of panic, kicks her down the stairs. Long story short, Gary get’s life for Child Destruction with a minimum of 13 years.

          Same story with a bit of a different scenario, but in this alternate world, Gary doesn’t give a fuck. Tells the girl to jog on, she’s on her on. Gripped with despair and panic, the lassie chucks herself down the stairs. The 16 girl get’s convicted of Child Destruction, but in this case, there are mitigating circumstances that factor in. The award of the court is 3 years suspended sentence.

          All this is moot. An individual is rarely charged with Child Destruction, because it is difficult to prove, so the action to the the mother, an actual person, has a far better chance of conviction and will result in a comparable sentence handed down in any case.

          http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/32332040/too-hard-to-convict-people-of-harming-unborn-babies

          Regarding your person hood trope.

          In that case it was agreed that the unborn child was not a person in law until the umbilical cord was severed and it became a separate entity from its mother. Lord Mustill concluded that that until the child had been born alive and acquired a separate existence she could not be the victim of murder. Lord Mustill went on to consider the doctrine of transferred malice which can arise where a Defendant intends serious harm to one person (the Mother) but an unintended person dies (the Child). However, he decided that the doctrine of transferred malice did not fit the facts of the case as it would require a double “transfer” of intent: first from the mother to the foetus and then from the foetus to the child as yet unborn. This was rejected as going ‘too far’ by his Lordship.

          https://www.mprsolicitors.co.uk/site/blog/criminal-department-news/criminal-law-unborn-child-father-charged-assault-to-miscarriage

        • “Oh ffs…that you think that murder and child destruction are the same, demonstrates your problem to everyone here all day long.”

          Technical foul! Here you are out of line. Present your claims without mean words and I’ll be happy to discuss your claims with you.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Tone Trolling.

        • Maybe you overlooked my last reply to you, so I’ll just let you know again that I am ending the discussion with you on this topic on this blog.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Nope…overlooked nothing. At this point I’m replying to your rubbish for the benefit of the other participants on this blog and those that might just be lurking. And there isn’t a thing you can do about it. End the discussion on your part if you want, it is what ya do after all, so I could give absolutely zero fucks.

          Bub-bye now.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Yep, I think abortion is murder is some rare circumstances.

          Just as well it doesn’t matter what you or I think, but it’s what society thinks. You’d have women and doctors on death row in some places in the US. But that’s not a rational position to hold and fortunately rational folk don’t hold it.

          It is assumed that if the fetus is a person, then abortion is murder. This position is incompatible with what most people believe, even most anti-choice activists. If the fetus is a person and abortion is murder, then those involved should be treated like murderers. Almost no one says that either abortion providers or the women should go to jail for murder. Making exceptions for rape, incest, and even the mother’s life are also incompatible with the idea that abortion is murder.

          Of course, it depends on how you define murder.

          Nope. Where it matters, is how the law of the land defines the word.

          A general definition: Murder is the intentional killing of one person by another person, except for a few specific good reasons.

          And even with that general definition, you have problems, because the subject of person hood is a minefield.

          Given that persons are granted both moral value and legal status, it follows that we must have reasons for why this is the case. That is, what is it exactly that constitutes a person that is different than other entities and justifies special treatment and protections? This is a profoundly important question that is answered differently by different worldviews. It is because of these conflicting worldviews that the debate about abortion rages on.

          https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/theory-knowledge/201508/when-does-it-become-person

          The article at Psychology Today would mirror your position…well, near as dammit as makes no odds, but it doesn’t help with the “spectrum” issue and what the laws pertaining to the issue should be.

          If a woman orders an abortion with the intent of killing the fetal person inside her and the abortion is then completed, I think the act is properly considered to be murder in most circumstances, under the general definition of murder.

          We know what you think, that’s the problem, but you haven’t made a convincing argument as to why a less of a person has these rights over the rights of a more of a person.

          Sure, the act may be labeled different things in different jurisdictions.

          For very good reasons that you’ve failed to grasp. They are not the same thing in the eyes of the law.

          The Omagh Bombing claimed the lives of 29 people. One was a woman called Avril Monaghan and she was pregnant with twins.

          The coroner reporting on the 1998 Omagh bombing recommended that the Director of Public Prosecutions for Northern Ireland should prosecute for two counts of child destruction as well as 29 of murder, as one of the people killed was 34 weeks pregnant with twins.

          Why do you think that is?

        • GW2: Ignorant Amos, thank you for avoiding uncivil remarks this time.

          GW1: Yep, I think abortion is murder is some rare circumstances.

          IA2: Just as well it doesn’t matter what you or I think, but it’s what society thinks. You’d have women and doctors on death row in some places in the US. But that’s not a rational position to hold and fortunately rational folk don’t hold it.

          GW2: You are misunderstanding my point here. I think abortion is sometimes murder from the ethical perspective and should be considered murder from the legal perspective. That’s a rational position to hold. I have suggested a punishment of a year and a day in jail, not the death penalty.

          IA2: It is assumed that if the fetus is a person, then abortion is murder. This position is incompatible with what most people believe, even most anti-choice activists. If the fetus is a person and abortion is murder, then those involved should be treated like murderers. Almost no one says that either abortion providers or the women should go to jail for murder. Making exceptions for rape, incest, and even the mother’s life are also incompatible with the idea that abortion is murder.

          GW2: What most people believe is not necessarily what is ethically correct. I recognize that there are different degrees of murder. Murder of a fetal person should carry a year and a day in jail.

          GW1: Of course, it depends on how you define murder.

          IA2: Nope. Where it matters, is how the law of the land defines the word.

          GW2: I disagree. I’m using a philosophical not a legal definition of “murder.” Also, I am telling what the law should be, not what it is now. Of course, I am going against the status quo!

          GW1: A general definition: Murder is the intentional killing of one person by another person, except for a few specific good reasons.

          IA2: And even with that general definition, you have problems, because the subject of person hood is a minefield.

          GW2: I disagree. It may be a minefield for you.

          IA2: Given that persons are granted both moral value and legal status, it follows that we must have reasons for why this is the case. That is, what is it exactly that constitutes a person that is different than other entities and justifies special treatment and protections? This is a profoundly important question that is answered differently by different worldviews. It is because of these conflicting worldviews that the debate about abortion rages on.

          GW2: Of course different people give different answers to that question. That’s what we are debating. I have given you what I believe to be the correct answer, and I have yet to hear a good objection to it.

          IA2: https://www.psychologytoday

          The article at Psychology Today would mirror your position…well, near as dammit as makes no odds, but it doesn’t help with the “spectrum” issue and what the laws pertaining to the issue should be.

          GW2: I have already solved the spectrum issue.

          GW1: If a woman orders an abortion with the intent of killing the fetal person inside her and the abortion is then completed, I think the act is properly considered to be murder in most circumstances, under the general definition of murder.

          IA2: We know what you think, that’s the problem, but you haven’t made a convincing argument as to why a less of a person has these rights over the rights of a more of a person.

          GW2: I disagree with your premise here – less of and more of a person. The fetus is either a person or it isn’t.

          GW1: Sure, the act may be labeled different things in different jurisdictions.

          IA2: For very good reasons that you’ve failed to grasp. They are not the same thing in the eyes of the law.

          GW2: Once again, I am talking about correct ethics and what the law should be, not what the law currently is.

          IA2: The Omagh Bombing claimed the lives of 29 people. One was a woman called Avril Monaghan and she was pregnant with twins.
          The coroner reporting on the 1998 Omagh bombing recommended that the Director of Public Prosecutions for Northern Ireland should prosecute for two counts of child destruction as well as 29 of murder, as one of the people killed was 34 weeks pregnant with twins.
          Why do you think that is?

          GW2: It depends on whether the twins were persons or not. Do you think they were?

        • Pofarmer

          Refreshing, isn’t it?

          You know I posted this on my personal facebook page, and have not got a single comment. Weird.

        • Clearly your circle of friends is stunned by the simple truth of your post and will need a little time to come to grips with this new reality before going public with this change in worldview.

        • So you believe that abortion is always ethical and should always be legal? No exceptions?

        • I’m fine with restrictions. My goal is simply to undercut the ridiculous pro-life position that the single cell is a person just like a newborn is.

        • By Bob, I think we agree on those points!

        • Greg G.

          So you believe that abortion is always ethical and should always be legal?

          That is two questions. The answers are: No and Yes.

          Forcing an unwilling host to maintain a pregnancy is unethical.

        • I disagree. Abortion is not always ethical. Abortion should not always be legal. And there should be exceptions to displace “always.”

          Preventing a host woman from killing the fetal person inside her, even when she strongly wants to kill it, is ethical almost all the time.

          Using coercion against persons who wish to kill other persons is ethical almost all the time.

        • Susan

          “There is no abortion law in Canada. It is neither legal nor illegal, it is simply a medical procedure and covered by universal health care.”

          I need to give a huge thumbs up here to Dr. Henry Morgentaler who suffered considerably to fight anti-choice laws here in Canada, a very long time ago, politically speaking.

          What I take for granted now, as a Canadian, did not come without a price for him and others.

          Thanks to him, things are as they should be here.

        • Define “porn.”

        • All children should be provided with proper sex education. Contraceptives should be safe, free, and widely available. However, there will still be a need for abortion.

    • Anthrotheist

      It has taken me a while to realize that the issue of abortion is inherently unsolvable. Even when a pro-lifer genuinely cares about the wellbeing of the pregnant woman, they are willing to subjugate the woman’s self-determinism in favor of the fetus’s; and even when a pro-choicer genuinely values the fetus as a proto-human potential-person, they are willing to subjugate the fetus’s wellbeing in favor of the woman’s self-determinism. Until the two entities can be separated in a way that is sufficiently safe and convenient for both sides, there will never be a way of settling the disagreement.

      • I realize that I’m a broken record, but seeing the fetus as not a person (or not 100% of a person) is the key issue to me.

        • Anthrotheist

          My intention really was to try to point out why, even when people on either side of the issue are willing to meet each other half way, they still will never find a middle ground when it comes to abortion.

        • Yes, I think they will. The pro-person position turns out to be the middle ground.

        • Anthrotheist

          The pro-person position is hardly a middle ground when one side insists that the person they are so pro about started at conception.

        • Personhood does not begin at conception and it does not begin at birth. I think there is a middle ground.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Your defense of that position has been piss-poor, logically, and emotionally-laden.

        • Susan

          seeing the fetus as not a person (or not 100% of a person) is the key issue to me.

          That is a key issue. They refer to persons when they wax on about genocide and such.

          They never address “personhood”. So they don’t get to claim it.

          The other key issue is that even if they could establish “personhood”, they don’t provide a single example (nor advocate for any other case) in which one person is held legally responsible for providing their bodily systems to ensure the survival of another person.

          It’s all based on a bunch of religious bullshit that has no real-world, moral foundation.

        • Pofarmer

          And even if the fetus were a person. It doesn’t matter. Because no one has rhe right to use anyone else body against their consent.

        • Carol Lynn

          Try asking them to give an instance of when a man’s bodily autonomy can be so routinely overriden. It’s either as they refuse to respond or ‘but she’s a woman! She should have known she could get pregnant.” It kinda brings their misogyny right out in the open.

        • Here you go:

          The Parent Organ Donation Scenario:
          A child needs a kidney transplant quickly or it will die. The healthy father of the child has a matching kidney for the child and will be harmed not at all or only a little if he donates one of his kidneys. But the father is reluctant. Should the father be required by ethics and law to donate one of his kidneys to save the life of his own child? Yes, because parents have special duties to protect the lives of their children that others do not have. And the right to life of the child supercedes the right of bodily autonomy of the father under these circumstances.

        • Carol Lynn

          That’s not how it works. There is no legal requirement for anyone to donate so much as blood against their consent; even if it’s that person’s child.

          Dead people have more rights than pregnant women.

        • I have never claimed that there is a legal requirement. I have claimed there is a moral requirement which should become a legal requirement.

          Do you think the father should be allowed to ignore the need of his child in the scenario? Would you ignore the need of your own child in a similar situation?

        • ThaneOfDrones

          This is the third comment in which you have repeated the same argument. Please stop spamming.

        • People ask for it and I provide. That is not spamming. They may not be reading the whole discussion.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower
        • I disagree. When the fetus becomes a person, it does have the right to use the host woman’s body against her consent. The right to life of the fetal person takes precedence or priority over the right to bodily autonomy of the host woman, IMO.

          This is why it is so important to establish what is a person and when does personhood begin during development. It surely does not begin at the zygote stage and it surely begins before natural birth.

        • Pofarmer

          Uhm. No. A person never has a right to use another person’s body without their consent. https://philosophicaldisquisitions.blogspot.com/2017/03/the-ethics-of-abortion-and-violinist.html?m=1

        • Yes, sometimes they do. If you think otherwise, then present your case.

        • Pofarmer

          When?

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower
        • Greg G.

          Personhood is irrelevant. Even if it is a person, it has no right to exist in the woman’s body, steal nutrients from her blood, dump toxic wastes into blood, and manipulate her by injecting pheromones into her blood without continued consent.

          If you are having sex and she gets tired of you during the act, you need to stop when you no longer have her consent to be inside her.

        • Pofarmer

          Thought you might find this post interesting if you havent seen it.

          https://vridar.org/2019/04/04/can-we-find-history-beneath-the-literary-trappings/#comments

        • GG1: Personhood is irrelevant. Even if it is a person, it has no right to exist in the woman’s body, steal nutrients from her blood, dump toxic wastes into blood, and manipulate her by injecting pheromones into her blood without continued consent.

          GW1: Personhood is relevant and important. When the fetus becomes a person, it does have the right to exist in the woman’s body, even without her consent (unless there are special complications). Fetuses can’t “steal.”

          GG1: If you are having sex and she gets tired of you during the act, you need to stop when you no longer have her consent to be inside her.

          GW1: By that time it may be too late. The sperm may be on the way to an egg. But the decision to have sexual intercourse is separate from the decision about the disposition of a ZEEF. We are debating the latter.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Personhood is legally irrelevant.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McFall_v._Shimp

        • Pofarmer

          I disagree. A fetus is not independent. It has neither sentience nor sapience. How it be a person?

        • It has human DNA and it acquires the capacity of consciousness at around 24 weeks post conception, and so it becomes a person at this time.

          Any human organism which is conscious knows something.

        • Ignorant Amos

          It doesn’t matter if you disagree or not, it is what it is. There is no legal requirement for anyone to use their bodies for the benefit of others. A fetus has no more rights than anyone else, regardless of when you think personhood begins.

        • IA: It doesn’t matter if you disagree or not, it is what it is.

          GW: It matters what is correct, and that is what we are debating. I think your position is incorrect and you think mine is incorrect.

          IA: There is no legal requirement for anyone to use their bodies for the benefit of others.

          GW: That may be, but there is a moral duty for this and there should be a legal requirement.

          IA: A fetus has no more rights than anyone else, regardless of when you think personhood begins.

          GW: When the fetus becomes a person, it has rights as do you and I. Therefore when personhood begins is a crucial judgement.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          I’ll keep posting this as often as necessary…you’re wrong according to US law.

          McFall v. Shimp https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McFall_v._Shimp

        • Anthrotheist

          At the risk of being a broken record myself, it is incredibly telling to me that none of the pro-life advocates even begin to offer solutions — or even any evidence that they have begun to consider — the necessary ramifications of fetal personhood. Everything from when a person’s legal age begins, to the application of the 14th Amendment (which explicitly states “born in the United States”, meaning that fetal persons would have to be naturalized before birth to benefit fully from American citizenship), to investigation of potential wrongful death for each and every miscarriage; all enormous legal and social problems that would result from fetal personhood that pro-lifers never think to mention.

        • We issue birth certificates, but I don’t know why we couldn’t switch to issuing personhood certificates at the right time in human development — when the fetus acquires the capacity of consciousness at around 24 weeks post conception.

        • Anthrotheist

          It’s the “around” part that I think is legally troublesome. Birth is a very specific, clearly identifiable point of demarcation. No point prior to a viable infant emerging alive from a mother’s womb is anywhere close to being that definitive and certain (i.e., it also avoids attributing personhood to late miscarriages, which can happen into the 24th week, and stillbirths that occur after the 24-week point).

        • Pofarmer

          And, you know what, if someone wants to have a funeral for a late stillbirth or whatever, that’s ok. Just don’t force everyone else to go the same route.

        • Pofarmer

          I think brain wave studies indicate the fetus isn’t really “conscious” till after birth. It’s basically kept sedated up till that point.

        • Ignorant Amos

          I keep a paper in my favorites for this kind of occasion…

          A proper understanding of pain must account for the conceptual content that constitutes the pain experience. The International Association for the Study of Pain defines pain as “an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage, or described in terms of such damage.”w11 By this definition pain is not merely the response to noxious stimuli or disease but is a conscious experience. The definition further states that “pain is always subjective. Each individual learns the application of the word through experiences related to injury in early life.”w11 The limited neural system of fetuses cannot support such cognitive, affective, and evaluative experiences; and the limited opportunity for this content to have been introduced also means that it is not possible for a fetus to experience pain.

          By this line of reasoning fetuses cannot be held to experience pain. Not only has the biological development not yet occurred to support pain experience, but the environment after birth, so necessary to the development of pain experience, is also yet to occur.

          Conclusion

          The neural circuitry for pain in fetuses is immature. More importantly, the developmental processes necessary for the mindful experience of pain are not yet developed. An absence of pain in the fetus does not resolve the question of whether abortion is morally acceptable or should be legal. Nevertheless, proposals to inform women seeking abortions of the potential for pain in fetuses are not supported by evidence. Legal or clinical mandates for interventions to prevent such pain are scientifically unsound and may expose women to inappropriate interventions, risks, and distress. Avoiding a discussion of fetal pain with women requesting abortions is not misguided paternalism, but a sound policy based on good evidence that fetuses cannot experience pain.

          https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1440624/

        • Pofarmer

          Ot, but you and @GregG might be interested in this. From Vridar.

          “An incident more alarming still had occurred four years before the war at a time of exceptional peace and prosperity for the City. One Jeshua son of Ananias, a very ordinary yokel, came to the feast at which every Jew is expected to set up a tabernacle for God. As he stood in the Temple he suddenly began to shout: ‘A voice from the east, a voice from the west, a voice from the four winds, a voice against Jerusalem and the Sanctuary, a voice against bridegrooms and brides, a voice against the whole people.’ Day and night he uttered this cry as he went through all the streets. Some of the more prominent citizens, very annoyed at these ominous words, laid hold of the fellow and beat him savagely. Without saying a word in his own defence or for the private information of his persecutors, he persisted in shouting the same warning as before. The Jewish authorities, rightly concluding that some supernatural force was responsible for the man’s behaviour, took him before the Roman procurator. There, though scourged till his flesh hung in ribbons, he neither begged for mercy nor shed a tear, but lowering his voice to the most mournful of tones answered every blow with ‘Woe to Jerusalem !’ When Albinus – for that was the procurator’s name – demanded to know who he was, where he came from and why he uttered such cries, he made no reply whatever to the questions but endlessly repeated his lament over the City, till Albinus decided he was a madman and released him. All the rime till the war broke out he never approached another citizen or was seen in conversation, but daily as if he had learnt a prayer by heart he recited his lament : ‘Woe to Jerusalem !’ Those who daily cursed him he never cursed; those who gave him food he never thanked: his only response to anyone was that dismal foreboding. His voice was heard most of all at the feasts. For seven years and five months he went on ceaselessly, his voice as strong as ever and his vigour unabated, till during the siege after seeing the fulfilment of his foreboding he was silenced. He was going round on the wall uttering his piercing cry: ‘Woe again to the City, the people, and the Sanctuary !’ and as he added a last word : ‘Woe to me also !’ a stone shot from an engine struck him, killing him instantly. Thus he uttered those same forebodings to the very end.
          Anyone who ponders these things will find that God cares for mankind and in all possible ways foreshows to His people the means of salvation, and that it is through folly and evils of their own choosing that they come to destruction.“

          https://vridar.org/2019/04/04/can-we-find-history-beneath-the-literary-trappings/#comments

        • Ignorant Amos

          Thanks for the link.

          Carrier relays that passage from Josephus “Jewish Wars” in OHJ, pp 428-30.

          Striking, isn’t it?

        • Pofarmer

          I wonder how ole Jim deals with stuff like that?

        • Ignorant Amos

          By waffling shit no doubt.

        • Pofarmer

          I dunno. I’ve probably just brainwashed myself. But Jim’s case looks weaker and weaker.

        • Greg G.

          I have looked at that a lot JW passage a lot. I was reluctant to think that Mark used Jewish Wars but the evidence is overwhelming in favor of it. I think I was probably composing a reply to r.g.price under that article when you posted this.

        • Pofarmer

          RG price indicated that he thought that it was possible that Josephus used Paul. But I don’t see any evidence of that. If Josephus knew Paul it seems like he would have also known about the cult that Paul was a part of.

        • Greg G.

          I have read Jewish Wars, probably 20% of Antiquities focused on the first century AD, and some of Josephus’ autobiography but I haven’t seen anything that reminded me of Paul’s writings. But many things jump out at me as being like the gospels and Acts and vice versa, sometimes I read things in the gospels or Acts that make me think of something in Josephus.

        • What does Josephus’s silence on Christianity mean? Presumably that it was so trivial a cult that it didn’t rise above the many other cults of Judaism. On the other hand, since he was writing history, even if it was noteworthy in his mind when he wrote his books, perhaps it hand’t been in decades past.

        • Pofarmer

          So, I’m no expert, but Josephus wrote about lot’s of different cults, but he never mentions Christianity. The Gospels appear to crib on Josephus, and not the other way around. The works of Paul don’t “appear” until the time of Marcion, which leads some to think the whole letters of Paul thing is a late, gnostic interpretation. So, the speculation is that Christianity really wasn’t any kind of a thing until the second century or very late forst century.

        • Greg G.

          Maybe the early Xtians were the Zealots. They believed like the Pharisees and Xtianity has many parallels with the Pharisees.

        • Pofarmer

          Maybe.

        • Pofarmer

          “Pro-lifers” like in the movie “Unplanned” love to conflate reflex reactions with pain.

        • Ignorant Amos

          I prefer the science maself.

        • Pofarmer

          You know as well as I do that the pro life position isn’t about science. All they want to do is to try to abuse science to make their point.

        • “The limited neural system of fetuses cannot support such cognitive, affective, and evaluative experiences; and the limited opportunity for this content to have been introduced also means that it is not possible for a fetus to experience pain.”

          GW: The evidence goes against this claim. The neural system of fetuses can support this experience.

          “Not only has the biological development not yet occurred to support pain experience, but the environment after birth, so necessary to the development of pain experience, is also yet to occur.”

          GW: The environment after birth is not necessary for the experience of pain, but only for the labeling and understanding of it.

          “More importantly, the developmental processes necessary for the mindful experience of pain are not yet developed.”

          GW: We are not talking about a higher level of “mindful experience of pain.” We are talking about the simple feeling of pain. Also, this experience is not the only channel for consciousness. Fetuses are also conscious of sounds before birth.

          “Legal or clinical mandates for interventions to prevent such pain are scientifically unsound and may expose women to inappropriate interventions, risks, and distress.”

          GW: The evidence does not support this claim. After about 24 weeks the fetus can experience pain.

          GW: What we have is a disagreement among experts. So, who is correct? We would have to look at the qualifications of the experts, the number of relevant empirical studies on which they are basing their conclusions, the quality of the studies themselves, and the percentage of experts who hold the conflicting opinions. I am confident in my claim — the fetus acquires the capacity for consciousness, including pain perception, before birth and sometime around 24-28 weeks post conception.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          GW: The evidence goes against this claim. The neural system of fetuses can support this experience.

          Cite your source or recant this statement.

        • For the sources read the essay and reference section here:
          Whittenberger, Gary. “Personhood and Abortion Rights: How Science Might Inform this Contentious Issue.” Skeptic. Vol. 23, No. 4, Pg. 34-39. And eSkeptic at

        • Pofarmer

          I honestly don’t care. I’ve posted relevant research elsewhere. And I’m not giving any clicks. so, if you want to make an argument. Make it.

        • That you don’t care is a problem.

        • Pofarmer

          I don’t care thAt you’ve written some nonsense article on it. I obviously care about the topic.

        • I disagree with your premise here. My article is based on reason.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Show me your degree in fetal biology before directing us to one of your screeds.

        • I don’t write “screeds.” I write essays. No degrees are required to refer you to essays.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          We shouldn’t issue ‘personhood’ certificates to parasites, IMHO.

          Next, you’ll be advocating for personhood certificates for Guinea Worms and tapeworms, not to mention cancer.

        • But we should issue personhood certificates to persons. Our debate is mostly about when a human organism becomes a person.

        • Excellent points. More evidence that what they want isn’t what they say they want.

        • Pofarmer

          So then, to be a U.S. citizen would you have to be conceived in the U.S? Not born?

        • Agreed. The question remains, though, how to make any progress on the debate.

          All that I can see is calling them on their “abortion is a holocaust!” claim. Reducing abortions isn’t the point; controlling sexuality is. Perhaps only Christianity becoming a minority view will help, but even then, it’s conservative views, not necessarily Christian ones, that are the problem.

          Your thoughts?

        • Certainly much can be done to reduce the frequency of unwanted and unplanned pregnancies, but it will be difficult to get those down to zero. For the ones which continue to happen, abortion is the best alternative. If the ZEEF (zygote, embryo, or early fetus) is not a person, and I don’t think it is, then abortion is the ethical option in most circumstances.

        • Agreed–the number won’t get down to zero, but it could conceivably be reduced by 90% with improved sex ed + convenient access to contraception (I always cite Valerie Tarico’s article on this).

          https://valerietarico.com/2015/09/11/if-the-anti-abortion-frenzy-were-actually-about-abortion-what-a-serious-anti-abortion-movement-would-actually-look-like/

        • Yes, the goal should be to get unwanted and unplanned pregnancies as close to zero as possible. And yes, I have read Tarico’s article and agree with nearly all of it.

        • Susan

          The question remains, though, how to make any progress on the debate.

          I assume you mean “how to change minds” because the debate consists of them calling zygotes children, pretending pregnancy and childbirth is a “minor inconvenience” and yelling genocide.

          All that I can see is calling them on their “abortion is a holocaust!” claim

          I agree. But it needs to be called out on two fundamental things.

          Calling a clump of cells a “person” doesn’t make it one.

          And no one calls not consenting to someone using your body to develop and/ or survive “murder” except in this circumstance.

          If we can’t get them to let go of “Yahwehjesus’s precious little souls” concept, it’s hard to convince most of them.

          People who genuinely want to consider the subject can be swayed.

          The rest will repeat the same old tropes, no matter how little sense they make.

          So, yes. Confront the terrible arguments every single time.

          It makes a difference.

          It’s made a difference before with things like civil rights and gay rights.

          Lies and propaganda have to be confronted, even if you can’t sway the lobbyists.

        • I disagree. I am a secular humanist and atheist, and I offer you the same example as above:

          The Parent Organ Donation Scenario:
          A child needs a kidney transplant quickly or it will die. The healthy father of the child has a matching kidney for the child and will be harmed not at all or only a little if he donates one of his kidneys. But the father is reluctant. Should the father be required by ethics and law to donate one of his kidneys to save the life of his own child? Yes, because parents have special duties to protect the lives of their children that others do not have. And the right to life of the child supercedes the right of bodily autonomy of the father under these circumstances.

        • Doubting Thomas

          I would disagree that parents have “special” lawful duties that others don’t have. What if the father was a one night stand, “sperm donor” type father who didn’t even know they had fathered a child? What if the mother had not had an abortion specifically because they preferred to give the child up for adoption instead of aborting? Would both of those parents still be subject to “kidney donation at the point of a gun?”

        • DT1: I would disagree that parents have “special” lawful duties that others don’t have.

          GW1: As far as I know the law does not require the organ donation I have described, but it should. Parents have this moral duty to their children.

          DT1: What if the father was a one night stand, “sperm donor” type father who didn’t even know they had fathered a child?

          GW1: A pregnant woman should always immediately inform the man she had sexual intercourse with in a “one night stand” that she is pregnant, and then the couple should decide on the disposition of the ZEEF. If they can’t decide, then the state should impose a fair resolution to establish ownership of the ZEEF and later custody of the resulting baby. Caretaker parents have the moral duties to donate organs to their children.

          DT1: What if the mother had not had an abortion specifically because they preferred to give the child up for adoption instead of aborting? Would both of those parents still be subject to “kidney donation at the point of a gun?”

          GW1: Caretaker parents have moral duties to donate organs to their children. Because of adoption, biological parents may not be the caretaker parents. That’s my position now, but I’d be open to hearing an argument that the biological parents who gave away custody should also be compelled.

          GW1: Most parents are going to volunteer to give organs to their children. (I certainly would. Wouldn’t you?) They won’t have to be coerced. And when they are coerced, the “point of a gun” will not be necessary in most cases.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          You’re arguing “ought” v. “is”.

          Until you can win at the ballot box, which isn’t likely to happen as people would realize the danger to which they’d subject themselves, you’re building castles in the clouds and attempting to move into them.

        • H: You’re arguing “ought” v. “is”.

          GW: What are you talking about?

          H: Until you can win at the ballot box, which isn’t likely to happen as people would realize the danger to which they’d subject themselves, you’re building castles in the clouds and attempting to move into them.

          GW: I am not currently running for office and I don’t have any intentions or plans to do so. I’m just trying to determine the truth and the morally correct.

        • Carol Lynn

          The Parent Organ Donation Scenario:

          Why bother to make it a parent? If bodily autonomy is optional, organs can be removed without consent, and no one has the right to refuse to give a kidney to any child who needs it if they are a match. Limiting the responsibility to parents is unnecessarily cruel to those dying children whose parents are either not a good enough match or who can’t donate for other medical reasons. Limiting it to ‘does not expect to be harmed much’ is also not a reasonable standard if we are comparing this to a pregnancy. Regardless of the harm it might do, if the kidney is a match, that dying child clearly deserves to have it more than the adult person with two kidneys. People would just get a notice in the mail that they needed to show up for their organ donation on Tuesday. No refusal allowed. The person donating’s health insurance may or may not cover the procedure but that is also immaterial. Their job may or may not be waiting for them after they have recovered from the organ removal. They may or may not be paid while they are recovering. Again, not relevant. They have no choice but to donate a kidney if some child needs it. After all, the right of any child to live clearly supersedes any adult’s right to decide what is done with pieces of their body.

          We don’t even have to limit it to children. If forced organ donation is possible, why shouldn’t anyone who needs an organ simply demand it from anyone who can donate? It should not require the consent of the person with a spare body part they need, because surely the sick person’s right to life would supersede the bodily autonomy of anyone else who is in better health.

          If bodily autonomy is optional, why do you assume that yours will reman intact?

          I am not willing to give up that much bodily autonomy. I doubt most people would be OK with that.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          What if two of children need kidney donations? Is the father obligated to sacrifice his life so that his two kids can have a chance at life? What if in addition to those two, the father has 70 other children. Sacrificing himself for those 2 leaves the others without a parent.

          And really, kidney donation is not trivial.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Gary doesn’t think like that though. He’s more of a black or white thinking type of fella. This is the guy that wants that eejit John Chau’s “murderer/s” brought to book and can’t see why it is untenable or unrealistic task. Even if there was agreement that Chau was indeed murdered.

        • This isn’t about me or you or John Chau. Try to stick to the subject of abortion.

        • Susan

          And really, kidney donation is not trivial.

          Neither is pregnancy and childbirth.

        • I agree with you, Susan, on that point. People need to take pregnancy and childbirth more seriously.

        • Susan

          I agree with you, Susan, on that point. People need to take pregnancy and childbirth more seriously

          I think you’ve missed he point here that Thaneof Drones has made and also the point that I have made.

          You created a hypothetical scenario in which “The healthy father of the child has a matching kidney for the child and will be harmed not at all or only a little if he donates one of his kidneys.”.

          As ThaneofDrones pointed out:

          kidney donation is not trivial

          And as I added, neither is pregnancy and childbirth.

          You stating that someone “should” do something by legal force does not mean it is true.

          You claiming that biological parents have an ethical commitment that should be put into law does not mean it’s true.

          All you have are “shoulds”.

          ‘Cause Gary said so.

          And, no. You haven’t supported a single bit of it.

          All of your support is based on “Gary says so.”

        • Pofarmer

          Gary never supplied a single link from one of his articles to support his other assertions either, even though he was asked.

        • GW2: I agree with you, Susan, on that point. People need to take pregnancy and childbirth more seriously

          S3: I think you’ve missed he point here that Thaneof Drones has made and also the point that I have made.

          GW3: That could happen. Maybe you two haven’t communicated your point very well. Care to try again?

          S3: You created a hypothetical scenario in which “The healthy father of the child has a matching kidney for the child and will be harmed not at all or only a little if he donates one of his kidneys.”.

          GW3: That seems like an accurate quote from the scenario I presented.

          S3: As ThaneofDrones pointed out:
          “kidney donation is not trivial”
          And as I added, neither is pregnancy and childbirth.

          GW2: I never implied in the scenario that donating a kidney is trivial. The scenario imagines a particular kind of situation in which the father suffers no significant permanent injury from the kidney donation. If the father would suffer significant permanent injury or death from making the donation, according to medical experts, then he shouldn’t be required to donate. It now appears to me that you missed my point in the scenario. Organ donations and pregnancies are never trivial.

          S2: You stating that someone “should” do something by legal force does not mean it is true.

          GW2: “Should” propositions are not descriptions and therefore they can be neither true nor false.

          S2: You claiming that biological parents have an ethical commitment that should be put into law does not mean it’s true.

          GW2: Ethical prescriptions are not descriptions and can be neither true nor false. I have made good prescriptions. If you think not, then argue for your objections.

          S2: All you have are “shoulds”.

          GW2: I did make some “should” statements, but they are hardly all I have, and so your claim is false.

          S2: ‘Cause Gary said so.

          GW2: Yes, these are my opinions, but they are just as good or better than your opinions on the same issues. I have given good evidence, reasons, and arguments for them, but you have not done the same for yours.

          S2: And, no. You haven’t supported a single bit of it.

          GW2: I disagree. I have supported all of it.

          S2: All of your support is based on “Gary says so.”

          GW2: I have presented good evidence, reasons, and arguments for all my positions. You just don’t like them.

        • Susan

          I have presented good evidence, reasons, and arguments for all my positions

          No, I haven’t seen you do it once. Link me to an instance in which you’ve done so.

          What you have done is claim that men and women are equally invested in a pregnancy, that biological parents should forfeit their bodily autonomy by law, that making abortion illegal (edit to add, a few seconds later: : in circumstances in which you think it should be made illegal) would reduce abortions.

          You haven’t supported your first two claims and you’ve not only not supported the third one, you’ve dismissed evidence against your claims.

        • GW3: I have presented good evidence, reasons, and arguments for all my positions

          S4: No, I haven’t seen you do it once. Link me to an instance in which you’ve done so.

          GW4: I disagree. Link me to an instance in which you think I haven’t, and then we can discuss it.

          S4: What you have done is claim that men and women are equally invested in a pregnancy, that biological parents should forfeit their bodily autonomy by law, that making abortion illegal (edit to add, a few seconds later: : in circumstances in which you think it should be made illegal) would reduce abortions.

          GW4: 1. Men and women make an equal physical investment in creation of the zygote, but they may have different levels of psychological investment in becoming caretakers. This is why they should make a conscious decision about the disposition of the ZEEF before intercourse or after the discovery of the pregnancy. 2. In some circumstances the law should resolve conflicts of rights and this may result in the right of one person superceding the right of another. Your position does not deal well with these situations. 3. There is one study from Guttmacher which shows that the abortion rate in countries where it is illegal is no different from the rate in countries where it is legal, but I am somewhat skeptical of this finding because it goes against a finding that punishment work for a wide variety of behaviors. There are several possible explanations which I already presented. More research is needed to clear up the issue.

          S4: You haven’t supported your first two claims and you’ve not only not supported the third one, you’ve dismissed evidence against your claims.

          GW4: You have distorted the first two claims. See my clarifications above. I am now undecided about the third claim. See above for my explanation.

          GW4: You seem to hold the assumption that women cannot make ethical errors in regard to abortion. I don’t agree with you on that. They are not infallible.

        • Susan

          S4: No, I haven’t seen you do it once. Link me to an instance in which you’ve done so.

          GW4: I disagree. Link me to an instance in which you think I haven’t, and then we can discuss it.

          Link me to an instance in which you have done so and we can discuss it.

          I do my best to be an honest interlocutor and to look for a person’s efforts to support their claims. And I honestly haven’t seen an instance in which you have done so.

          You have distorted the first two claims.

          Possibly. Explain how. Keep in mind that you might not have communicated them well, not that I’m distorting them. It is not my intention to distort claims.

          Men and women make an equal physical investment in creation of the zygote, but they may have different levels of psychological investment in becoming caretakers.

          Psychological investment? Do you have any idea what pregnancy and child birth entails? The short terms health risks? The long term health risks?

          Pregnancy can kill you. Pregnancy can wreak permanent havoc on your health. Childbirth can kill you. Childbirth can wreak permanent havoc on your health.

          Choosing to carry a zygote to term and to deliver it comes with health risks. Often with dire health risks.

          I am now undecided about the third claim. See above for my explanation.

          That’s kind of a weaselly way of saying “I have no evidence for the position I took earlier. The evidence we do have goes against that position. So, I am undecided until evidence that supports my position comes in.”

          i.e. You’ve provided no evidence for your claim. And reject the evidence that people provided, without showing warrant.

          You seem to hold the assumption that women cannot make ethical errors in regard to abortion. I don’t agree with you on that.

          Humans make ethical errors all the time. From relying on factory-farmed meat to refusing to donate their organs after they die.

          Women are not excluded from making ethical errors. But you are suggesting that their right to bodily autonomy be taken away from them in certain circumstances, about which you have yet to be specific, without showing justification.

          Suggesting that biological fathers be legally forced to donate kidneys does not help your case.

          As you’ve provided no justification for that, either.

        • S4: No, I haven’t seen you do it once. Link me to an instance in which you’ve done so.

          GW4: I disagree. Link me to an instance in which you think I haven’t, and then we can discuss it.

          S5: Link me to an instance in which you have done so and we can discuss it.

          GW5: Link me to an instance in which you think I haven’t, and then we can discuss it.

          S5: I do my best to be an honest interlocutor and to look for a person’s efforts to support their claims. And I honestly haven’t seen an instance in which you have done so.

          GW5: You may seek, but you may not always see what has been presented.

          GW4: You have distorted the first two claims.

          S5: Possibly. Explain how. Keep in mind that you might not have communicated them well, not that I’m distorting them. It is not my intention to distort claims.

          GW5: I made the clarifications. Did you read them?

          GW4: Men and women make an equal physical investment in creation of the zygote, but they may have different levels of psychological investment in becoming caretakers.

          S5: Psychological investment? Do you have any idea what pregnancy and child birth entails? The short terms health risks? The long term health risks?

          GW5: I was referring to caretaking of a resulting baby and child, not to the ZEEF. That is why I used the word “becoming.” That is a key word to understanding my meaning.

          S5: Pregnancy can kill you. Pregnancy can wreak permanent havoc on your health. Childbirth can kill you. Childbirth can wreak permanent havoc on your health.

          GW5: I agree.

          S5: Choosing to carry a zygote to term and to deliver it comes with health risks. Often with dire health risks.

          GW5: Of course there are! Some dangers actually occur, and some do not.

          GW4: I am now undecided about the third claim. See above for my explanation.

          S5: That’s kind of a weaselly way of saying “I have no evidence for the position I took earlier. The evidence we do have goes against that position. So, I am undecided until evidence that supports my position comes in.”

          GW5: The evidence in support of my original claim is that punishment works! Laws and law enforcement are a form of punishment. So, I am really surprised with the Guttmacher finding. On the surface it seems correct, but I am still skeptical about it. I’m sorry you consider my nuanced opinion as “weaselly.”

          S5: i.e. You’ve provided no evidence for your claim. And reject the evidence that people provided, without showing warrant.

          GW5: Punishment works with almost all behaviors! Don’t you expect that it would work with the behavior of getting an unethical abortion?

          GW4: You seem to hold the assumption that women cannot make ethical errors in regard to abortion. I don’t agree with you on that.

          S5: Humans make ethical errors all the time. From relying on factory-farmed meat to refusing to donate their organs after they die.

          GW5: I agree that human persons make ethical errors. Women are human persons. So women make ethical errors too.

          S5: Women are not excluded from making ethical errors. But you are suggesting that their right to bodily autonomy be taken away from them in certain circumstances, about which you have yet to be specific, without showing justification.

          GW5: Women can and do make ethical errors, even in the case of abortion. I have been specific about this and have showed justification, but I will placate you and go over one situation again. Suppose a woman has a fetal person inside her and she demands an abortion now. She should not automatically be given the abortion. Because an abortion would endanger the life and well being of the fetal person, the woman should have a good reason for seeking the abortion. I think there are only four good reasons, so if she gives a bad reason, e.g. “My boyfriend just left me,” then she should not be given the abortion. As the default, the fetal person’s right to life should supercede the woman’s right to bodily autonomy is this situation. If you have questions or objections about this, offer them now.

          S5: Suggesting that biological fathers be legally forced to donate kidneys does not help your case.

          GW5: Oh, I disagree. It helps my case enormously since I am showing that my principle is gender neutral.

          S5: As you’ve provided no justification for that, either.

          GW5: The justification for that is that all parents have special moral duties to their own children which they do not have to other children or adults. What more justification do you need than that?

        • Susan

          The justification for that is that all parents have special moral duties to their own children which they do not have to other children or adults

          You haven’t justified the claim that all parents have special moral duties to their own children (that should be legally enforced) which they do not have to other children or adults.

          You are saying that a sperm donor who donated sperm to pay his way through medical school should be legally obligated to donate a kidney. Or bone marrow.

          And you are also saying that a woman who was encouraged to gestate and deliver a baby in order to give it up for adoption should do the same.

          But you haven’t provided justification for either statement.

          =====

          Edit to add: You haven’t explained in any way why a woman should be forced to donate her organs to something that hasn’t reached the status of “baby” or “child” yet.

        • GW5: The justification for that is that all parents have special moral duties to their own children which they do not have to other children or adults

          S6: You haven’t justified the claim that all parents have special moral duties to their own children (that should be legally enforced) which they do not have to other children or adults.

          GW6: The reason they have these special moral duties is because they either brought these children into the world (the children did not choose this) and/or they agreed to care for them. The world would be more chaotic and brutish if parents did not have these moral duties. There you go.

          S6: You are saying that a sperm donor who donated sperm to pay his way through medical school should be legally obligated to donate a kidney. Or bone marrow.

          GW6: I don’t think so. By mutual agreement of the sperm donor with the egg donor, any parental rights and duties of the sperm donor were severed by contract.

          S6: And you are also saying that a woman who was encouraged to gestate and deliver a baby in order to give it up for adoption should do the same.

          GW6: I don’t think so. In this case the woman’s parental rights and duties were severed through the adoption.

          S6: But you haven’t provided justification for either statement.

          GW6: By default, biological parents should retain parental rights and duties with respect to the children they produce, unless these are severed by mutual consent or by imposition of an ethical arrangement by the state. Otherwise there would be a more chaotic and brutish world. There you go.

          S6: Edit to add: You haven’t explained in any way why a woman should be forced to donate her organs to something that hasn’t reached the status of “baby” or “child” yet.

          GW6: To clarify: She would not be donating her organs. She would be providing nutrients through the umbilical cord to the ZEEF in a protected environment inside her. She should not be forced to do this except in specific rare circumstances. This would occur if she wanted to kill the ZEEF and her male partner wanted to save it, which is rare. The ZEEF is not a person. Instead it is the jointly owned property of the man and the woman. The woman should not be able to destroy this co-owned property without the consent of the man. This is derived from a more general ethical principle: No person should be able to unilaterally destroy their jointly-owned property without the unanimous consent of all owners.

        • Susan

          GW6: The reason they have these special moral duties is because they either brought these children into the world (the children did not choose this) and/or they agreed to care for them.

          But if a woman chooses not to do it, you can put her in jail. Because “punishment always works” (something else you haven’t justified.)

          By mutual agreement of the sperm donor with the egg donor, any parental rights and duties of the sperm donor were severed by contract.

          Unless you’re a pregnant woman. In which case, you suggest that she has no right to sever any contract. Even though her long-term health and potential mortality are involved.

          She would not be donating her organs. She would be providing nutrients through the umbilical cord to the ZEEF in a protected environment inside her. She should not be forced to do this except in specific rare circumstances. This would occur if she wanted to kill the ZEEF and her male partner wanted to save it,

          Why?

          it is the jointly owned property of the man and the woman. The woman should not be able to destroy this co-owned property without the consent of the man.

          This is insane. This is like airdropping someone into the woods with a blueprint for a lodge/restaurant, demanding that they build it, even if it might kill them, that they provide all the work, all the resources, all the risk, and then claiming joint ownership when you fly back later.

          It’s fucking insane.

          .

        • Pofarmer

          It’s fucking insane.

          Thank you.

        • GW6: The reason they have these special moral duties is because they either brought these children into the world (the children did not choose this) and/or they agreed to care for them.

          S7: But if a woman chooses not to do it, you can put her in jail. Because “punishment always works” (something else you haven’t justified.)

          GW7: It is ethical to put either parent, man or woman, in jail if they do not fulfill their moral duties to their children. This happens in other situations of child neglect or abuse. Also, punishment doesn’t work always, but nearly always. Have you ever used punishment? Has it worked for you? Has punishment ever been used towards you? Did it work?

          GW6: By mutual agreement of the sperm donor with the egg donor, any parental rights and duties of the sperm donor were severed by contract.

          S7: Unless you’re a pregnant woman. In which case, you suggest that she has no right to sever any contract. Even though her long-term health and potential mortality are involved.

          GW7: She can sever a contract as long as doing so doesn’t violate the rights of other persons in some situations. You must be specific when you talk about these situations.

          GW6: She would not be donating her organs. She would be providing nutrients through the umbilical cord to the ZEEF in a protected environment inside her. She should not be forced to do this except in specific rare circumstances. This would occur if she wanted to kill the ZEEF and her male partner wanted to save it,

          S7: Why?

          GW7: See next sentence for why.

          GW6: it is the jointly owned property of the man and the woman. The woman should not be able to destroy this co-owned property without the consent of the man.

          S7: This is insane. This is like airdropping someone into the woods with a blueprint for a lodge/restaurant, demanding that they build it, even if it might kill them, that they provide all the work, all the resources, all the risk, and then claiming joint ownership when you fly back later.

          GW7: No, Susan, it is rational. Your analogy doesn’t work. To make it better: The lodge is already built and is owned by two persons. One owner wants to burn it down without the consent of the other co-owner who is out of the country on assignment for seven months.

          S7: It’s fucking insane.

          GW7: No, Susan, it is very rational. So far, you have not made a good objection, but I don’t mind if you keep trying, as long as it is in a civil manner.

        • Susan

          Your analogy doesn’t work. To make it better: The lodge is already built and is owned by two persons. One owner wants to burn it down without the consent of the other co-owner who is out of the country on assignment for seven months.

          Yours is a terrible analogy. It is not built without the resources of a single person (a pregnant woman). It is built at a cost to her short-term well-being, her long-term well-being, including the cost of her life.

          Meanwhile, the ejaculator (who is out of the country for seven months) insists that she contribute to property he claims to co-own, although all he’s done is air drop her into the woods (ejaculated) and insist that she build a restaurant/lodge, using her resources, her labour, no matter what the health consequences, and even with the chance that she will die, because he is a co-owner in the enterprise.

          Because… why?

          I’m going to ignore how badly you supported (in fact, didn’t support at all) your claim that “punishment works”.

          People who have interacted with me over the years will have noticed that rarely, if ever, have I used the term misognyny in my comments.

          I think it is a charge about which one should be very, very careful before one levels it.

          But your ideas are misognynistic.

          A woman’s body is not a vessel for your property claims.

          I don’t mind if you keep trying

          I couldn’t give a rat’s ass if you mind or not.

          as long as it is in a civil manner.

          There is nothing civil about your positions. They are horrific positions and unsupported.

          You need to start considering that when people respond to them with hostility, it is because of that.

          You need to start taking responsibility for your own behaviour.

        • GW7: Your analogy doesn’t work. To make it better: The lodge is already built and is owned by two persons. One owner wants to burn it down without the consent of the other co-owner who is out of the country on assignment for seven months.

          S8: Yours is a terrible analogy. It is not built without the resources of a single person (a pregnant woman). It is built at a cost to her short-term well-being, her long-term well-being, including the cost of her life.

          GW8: Mine is much better than yours! The lodge was built by and is owned by two persons, just like a zygote is created and owned by two persons, i.e. the man and the woman. One of the owners makes improvements to the lodge as the other owner is out of the country, like a woman provides nutrients to the ZEEF because it is inside her and not inside the man. But throughout, the lodge is co-owned by two persons, just like the ZEEF is. In both cases one co-owner doesn’t have a right to destroy the jointly owned property without the consent of the other. I improved your analogy, and you are welcome.

          S8: Meanwhile, the ejaculator (who is out of the country for seven months) insists that she contribute to property he claims to co-own, although all he’s done is air drop her into the woods (ejaculated) and insist that she build a restaurant/lodge, using her resources, her labour, no matter what the health consequences, and even with the chance that she will die, because he is a co-owner in the enterprise.

          GW8: Now you are trying to mix the analogy with the real life situation and failing miserably at it. In the analogy the co-owner who is out of the country already halfway built the lodge before he left. He is the co-owner before he leaves on the trip. Whether the other owner maintains or improves the lodge is irrelevant to the ethical judgement that the temporary caretaker can’t burn down the lodge without the consent of the other owner. You are missing the point.

          S8: I’m going to ignore how badly you supported (in fact, didn’t support at all) your claim that “punishment works”.

          GW8: I’m NOT going to ignore how you evaded my questions about how punishment works. You know it works because you have either used it or it has been used against you, and it has worked.

          S8: People who have interacted with me over the years will have noticed that rarely, if ever, have I used the term misognyny in my comments. I think it is a charge about which one should be very, very careful before one levels it. But your ideas are misognynistic.

          GW8: I strongly disagree. Please explain and defend your charge.

          S8: A woman’s body is not a vessel for your property claims.

          GW8: I have explained the property analysis to you before, but I’ll try to do it again. The ZEEF is jointly owned property of the man and the woman. The womb is property owned by the woman. The womb is a “climate-controlled sustaining container” of the jointly owned property. Just because the woman owns the container doesn’t mean she can just destroy the jointly owned property inside it without consent of the man. I don’t know why you believe otherwise. Reverse it: Suppose the man wants to kill the ZEEF and the woman wants to save it. Should he be allowed to kill it without her consent? Of course not. Persons have the same property rights. Your position is misandrist because you want to deny the same rights to the man as the woman has.

          GW7: I don’t mind if you keep trying…as long as it is in a civil manner.

          S8: I couldn’t give a rat’s ass if you mind or not. There is nothing civil about your positions. They are horrific positions and unsupported.

          GW8: Your anger is creeping into your language both this time and last. Be careful. Positions aren’t uncivil because you disagree with them. My positions are rational, ethical, and supported.

          S8: You need to start considering that when people respond to them with hostility, it is because of that.

          GW8: You need to start considering that uncivil remarks in a debate are unethical even when you are angry and hate your opponent.

          S8: You need to start taking responsibility for your own behaviour.

          GW8: What are you talking about? I always take responsibility for my behavior.

        • Susan

          The lodge was built by and is owned by two persons

          NO!!! It is not built. And it is not co-owned even under property laws.

          one co-owner doesn’t have a right to destroy the jointly owned property

          One person who airdropped another person into the wood, to do all the work is not a co-owner, not even by property laws.

          You can say “co-owner” and “already built” all you like, but it’s bullshit. Because all you’ve done is claim it and you have provided no justification for it.

          Now you are trying to mix the analogy with the real life situation and failing miserably at it.

          SPROINGGG!!!!!

          In the analogy the co-owner who is out of the country already halfway built the lodge before he left.

          He did not “halfway build it”. He airdropped her into the woods with a blueprint. EVERY, SINGLE step at that point, no matter what the potential effects on her physically and psychologically, in order to build the restaurant/lodge in the middle of the woods comes from HER.

          This is insane.

          Should he be allowed to kill it without her consent?

          She is not killing it. She is withdrawing her consent to use her body, (something even corpses are granted).

          Your anger is creeping into your language both this time and last. Be careful.

          I am angry. Because you’re thick as a brick. Because you use shitty analogies that are in no way comparable to real life situations. Because you claim that a woman is obligated to provide her body to fulfill imaginary property rights.

          But I’ve stayed on point. My anger is not controlling me. But there’s nothing uncivil about expressing anger to someone who wants to withdraw the rights of bodily autonomy from half of the human race, claiming property rights, when they don’t even understand how property rights work. I have (and many others have) made efforts to correct your unsupported assertions. To communicate with you about where your egregious errors lie.

          And you stick your fingers in your ears, do nothing to support your claims, and keep placing ejaculator’s rights above the rights of women who are forced to gestate and deliver what you claim to be “property”.

          What you are proposing is insane and remains unsupported.

          What are you talking about? I always take responsibility for my behaviour.

          Saying so doesn’t make it so, Gary.

          No, you haven’t.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Pure gold.

          Fuckwit Gary is so arrogant, that he is dictating the terms of your analogy to make his bullshit fit.

        • Cynthia

          He objected that it was “propaganda” when I repeated his proposal back to him in terms that weren’t sufficiently serious.

        • GW8: The lodge was built by and is owned by two persons

          S9: NO!!! It is not built. And it is not co-owned even under property laws.

          GW9: We are discussing an analogy and hypothetical situation, not a real situation. The lodge was built and is owned by two persons, just like the zygote was/is in real life.

          GW8: one co-owner doesn’t have a right to destroy the jointly owned property

          S9: One person who airdropped another person into the wood, to do all the work is not a co-owner, not even by property laws.

          GW9: There was no airdropping. One person makes improvements to the jointly owned lodge while the other owner is away on an assignment, maybe a tour of duty in the military.

          S9: You can say “co-owner” and “already built” all you like, but it’s bullshit. Because all you’ve done is claim it and you have provided no justification for it.

          GW9: The one situation is an analogy and a hypothetical. The only justification necessary for it is that it be constructed as similar to the real situation as possible, which is what I am doing. The justification for the real situation with the ZEEF is this, which I have presented before: If two or more persons create, invent, assemble, manufacture, or otherwise cause the existence of some product, then by default the product is property owned by all those persons in a manner proportional to their contributions or to their mutually agreed assignment. Decisions to sell, give away, loan, transfer, modify, or destroy the property must be made by all the owners. Destruction of the property is irrevocable and thus should require unanimous consent of the owners.

          GW8: In the analogy the co-owner who is out of the country already halfway built the lodge before he left.

          S9: He did not “halfway build it”. He airdropped her into the woods with a blueprint. EVERY, SINGLE step at that point, no matter what the potential effects on her physically and psychologically, in order to build the restaurant/lodge in the middle of the woods comes from HER.

          GW9: For the analogy to be similar to the real situation, he halfway built the lodge. They agreed to build the lodge together. That’s why the lodge was built. It wouldn’t have been built unless she consented and put in half the blueprint, building materials, and construction work. It was a joint building project. That is why the resulting structure is owned by both.

          S9: This is insane.

          GW9: This is rational, clever, and ethical.

          GW8: Should he be allowed to kill it without her consent?

          S9: She is not killing it. She is withdrawing her consent to use her body, (something even corpses are granted).

          GW9: She wants to abort the ZEEF which at the early stages we are talking about will KILL it. ZEEFs less than about 20 weeks old cannot be saved. They die when they are aborted. Of course, you know this. When you say “she is withdrawing her consent to use her body,” you are implying that she ALREADY gave her consent, and that is ABSOLUTELY CORRECT! When she consented to intercourse she gave her implied consent to TEMPORARILY provide the use of her body to the ZEEF. Now after there is a ZEEF inside her, her wanting to withdraw her consent for use of her body means that she wants an abortion. Then a conflict results since the man doesn’t want this. YOU JUST PROVED MY CASE FOR ME. THANK YOU.

          GW8: Your anger is creeping into your language both this time and last. Be careful.

          S9: I am angry. Because you’re thick as a brick. Because you use shitty analogies that are in no way comparable to real life situations. Because you claim that a woman is obligated to provide her body to fulfill imaginary property rights.

          GW9: I know you are angry but that gives you no right to make uncivil remarks against me; that would be unethical. And this time, you let your anger get the best of you and you made an uncivil remark – “…you’re thick as a brick.” That’s an insult. You are going to continue to be angry and are probably going to increase the frequency and severity of uncivil remarks. If you do, then I will just stop talking with you. Is that what you want? Maybe it is. We shall see.

          S9: But I’ve stayed on point. My anger is not controlling me. But there’s nothing uncivil about expressing anger to someone who wants to withdraw the rights of bodily autonomy from half of the human race, claiming property rights, when they don’t even understand how property rights work. I have (and many others have) made efforts to correct your unsupported assertions. To communicate with you about where your egregious errors lie.

          GW9: Unfortunately, your anger is starting to control you, little by little, until this time you actually made an clearly uncivil remark (see above). There is nothing wrong with expressing anger, as long as you express it in a civil way, e.g. “I’m really angry with your position” or “I’m getting really irritated as I hear your ideas.” Be careful.

          GW9: Your claim here is mistaken. I don’t want to withdraw the right of bodily autonomy from women. But I do want the right of bodily autonomy of any person to be SUPERCEDED by somebody else’s right in rare and specific situations, the ones we have been talking about. You don’t understand how property rights work or how conflicts in rights should be handled.

          S9: And you stick your fingers in your ears, do nothing to support your claims, and keep placing ejaculator’s rights above the rights of women who are forced to gestate and deliver what you claim to be “property”.

          GW9: I’ve read and studied everything you’ve said. I’ve supported all my claims. You demean the rights of men by calling them “ejaculator’s rights.” That is just propaganda. The zygote is jointly owned property since it was created by the man and the woman. The man should not have the right to destroy it without the consent of the woman, and vice versa.

          S9: What you are proposing is insane and remains unsupported.

          GW9: What I am proposing is rational, clever, ethical, and supported.

        • Kodie

          GW9: What I am proposing is rational, clever, ethical, and supported.

          What you are proposing is enslavement, and is stupid, biased, and makes you a monster. Think if you got pregnant, would you think you owed it to anyone else to share something you didn’t want in the first place? You would want some woman telling you you couldn’t get rid of it?

        • K1: What you are proposing is enslavement, and is stupid, biased, and makes you a monster.

          GW1: This is an uncivil remark, totally out of place in a forum like this. I’d be happy to discuss these issues with you if you will refrain from comments like this.

        • Kodie

          Gary, you just threatened not to talk to me 4 times. I answered your post using great and accurate vocabulary. That you cannot confront what a monster you are makes you the hostile, uncivil one. It’s so frustrating that you can’t get over how your locked-in opinions, your posting/quoting style, and your harassment of everyone who calls you honestly what you are, you’re just bound to get cursed at, but I didn’t curse at you here. I told you what you are to other people that you don’t think that you are.

        • Cynthia

          Gary now wants to control not only swear words, but even people people correctly calling his positions horrific or using sarcasm or failing to treat the ideas he pulls out of his tuches as pearls of wisdom worthy of respect.

          Nope. I use righteous indignation and sarcasm and quoting someone’s words in a way that makes them look ridiculous in court – a place where I am required to be civil. Gary doesn’t get special treatment above that. Take away someone’s ability to have a genuine reaction or to poke fun at an argument, and you kill any discussion or debate. Once again, he is less a skeptic and more an authoritarian.

          Anyway….to only way the analogy works is if we talk about how Gary would have the law compel the person to personally do construction work in the lodge, would prohibit them from terminating the deal or selling their interest prior to completion of the lodge, and would even prohibit the person from evacuating in the event of a fire or hurricane warning. After all, even during Hurricane Katrina, the risk of dying for those who didn’t evacuate was only around 1%. (Suffice it to say, none of this is how the law actually works. Potential babies are not property. Women and their body parts are not property. Jointly owned property can be partitioned and sold if one owner wants out. Laws don’t require people to put their health and even their lives on the line for the sake of property rights. None of the above assumptions are ethical, because they are dehumanizing.)

        • Cynthia

          Still waiting for Gary to justify the notion that ejaculation is somehow equal to 9 months of pregnancy and childbirth. Once a child is born? Sure, at that point the notion of equal responsibilities kicks in and you can evaluate actual parenting. But the idea that ejaculation is so much of a contribution that it justifies forcing another person to jeopardize their health and even their lives just so somebody else doesn’t feel bad? There is no logic there at all, and neither repetition of the word “ethical” nor use of exclamation points changes that.

          Oh, and his “you seem to make the assumption..” line? He used that exact line on me. He does that. It has nothing to do with anything you actually wrote. He used another throwaway line on me which was pretty insulting, and happened to be the exact opposite of what my life involved.

        • Susan

          his “you seem to make the assumption..” line? He used that exact line on me. He does that. It has nothing to do with anything you actually wrote. He used another throwaway line on me which was pretty insulting, and happened to be the exact opposite of what my life involved.

          Yep. That seems to be his pattern. I haven’t seen him deviate from it.

          I had to give up for a day and a half, because attempts to communicate with him seem to be nearly impossible.

          I’ve ventured in again, because the conversation is important.

          Despite the fact that Gary doesn’t seem able or willing to contribute to it in any significant way.

          I am not saying that to be sarcastic or dismissive.

          It honestly seems to be the case.

        • Kodie

          Gary thinks he is smarter than everyone else, and also doesn’t tolerate people who tell him what it is, i.e., tell him to fuck the fuck off. Naughty naughty! If you don’t shape up your language, I refuse to communicate with you! Like that’s a punishment. The guy is an arrogant tool who doesn’t seem to realize (although it may be intentional) that he isn’t a nice person, and that the things he says are basically saying “fuck you” to women, or anyone, depending on topic, basically fuck everyone at this blog, but has to say whatever bullshit he wants to say, but you can never call it bullshit or he will clutch his pearls and try to shame your language. He never can admit… he can’t seem to see how shallow and offensive he is, and thinks we owe him civility, while refusing to address good points. I hate the guy. This is a manipulative and entitled asshole if anyone is.

        • Kodie

          What the fuck! I mean, first of all, men love ejaculating, and they are famous for not wanting to be responsible for anything that happens to it after they’ve used your body as a repository to ejaculate in. Whatever few want to know what happened, that’s intrusive, first of all, it’s like stalking. Here, take a pregnancy test, take another, take another, to follow her around to make sure she doesn’t get an abortion. Second, I’ve seen enough Maury to know, if she turns out to be pregnant, it might not even be his sperm up in there, so he gets no share, but he will hound a woman to own her as though SHE were his property, because she’s not allowed to do whatever with her own body without his consent, just because he fucked her one time, without even knowing if he has this share of rights he thinks he has to enslave her, i.e. outvote her. Gary is a fucking lunatic and a goddamned monster. If ejaculating is even 50%, it’s not a controlling interest in the contents of her uterus, and if it’s anything more than 0%, it’s far less than 50 by virtue of where that thing will be housed for the next 9 months.

          But as I’ve said in the past, let’s not get attached to things that aren’t people as though it’s a massive tragedy for another person never to have existed. Gary, if you want a baby with a woman, find a woman who wants a baby with you and then fuck HER. You’re disgusting to the rest of us, and I suspect, by the way he regards women and is suspicious of them, he thinks he is a nice guy and women are repulsed by him, and that makes him mad.

        • Cynthia

          You mean A Handmaid’s Tale isn’t supposed to be a how-to guide? /s

          Because that’s how the conversation was going. He was just a bit too enthusiastic about punishing and confining pregnant women in multiple ways, and it was getting weird.

        • Kodie

          You know how communism doesn’t work because how humans actually are, but might change the world if people worked according to this one political ideal? I feel like there aren’t enough men who impregnate women who want to force those women to be pregnant, but Gary’s idea is (1), the man needs to know what the woman plans, for a woman he didn’t even know was pregnant, and (2), has any amount of power over her decisions with her body., because if he wants to intervene, he’s entitled to supercede her decision, which makes him 51% at least, and ejaculating doesn’t give him any fucking thing. The opposite situation, where the woman wants to continue the pregnancy, and the man is on the hook whether he wants to be or not, well that’s tough shit. Men want to get out of responsibility or take complete control of a woman’s decision, how totally misogynistic.

          Gary Whittenberger is a tool. I don’t really know A Handmaid’s Tale, that’s poorer women being impregnated by rich women’s husbands, or what? I almost read the book, and don’t watch the show. He seems to think men aren’t being allowed to make any pregnancy decisions. If a woman makes it to 25 weeks, and decides, though she’s been very nervous, that she should admit to the man that she’s pregnant. She legally has the right to keep the pregnancy, and hold the ejaculator accountable for child support, but the ejaculator does not have the same privilege to force her to stay pregnant if she wants an abortion. While that does seem a little bit unfair, give me a fucking break! If they are not married, why would a man want to have sex with a woman he doesn’t know very well unless he understood the risk of being on the hook for any babies? Why don’t we SHAME MEN for fucking women without any interest in supporting children? I was in a relationship with a guy, and asked him what he would want or do or etc., if I found out I got pregnant, and we took precautions, but that really freaked him out as “rushing things.” Well, get the fuck out if you can’t have a mature conversation after you’re already having SEX with a woman you’re in a relationship with.

          My experience is men never want an open conversation, they just want to fuck you, so it’s hard for me to believe that most of them even have any interest in the kind of rights Gary Whittenberger thinks they should have. A real gentleman who doesn’t want to jeopardize a woman’s fertility by forcing her to be pregnant would only get involved with women who want to have a baby with them. They would have to abstain from sex with everyone else. I mean, men, abstain from sex with a willing woman, think of it. The standard for unwanted pregnancy being with men who abstained from sex unless it was with a woman he had agreed to have a child with, imagine putting the burden on men instead. Men, stop having slutty sex with anyone, and then expecting rights.

        • Cynthia

          I did a few cases where men were upset over a women’s decision to abort – although not so upset that they didn’t get the same partners pregnant again. Turns out that there was actually reason for these women to have had misgivings.

          You really do need to read A Handmaid’s Tale. Author is Margaret Atwood.

        • Susan

          Author is Margaret Atwood.

          She has an Orwellian knack for analyzing human behaviour, researching technologies and predicting the future by a few years.

          On her non-fiction side, I recommend Payback

          The roots of sin are debt. As far as I remember, the original meaning of sin is “debt”.

          Also, lots of stuff about how European kings would borrow large amounts of money from Jewish lenders (who were the only ones exempt from usury laws, because of their religion) and when they didn’t have the means to pay them back, or just sometimes didn’t feel like paying them back, they would exile and/ or slaughter them.

          =====

          ETA: And take all their belongings while they were at it.

          An interesting book that came out not long before the loan crisis.

          Here we go again.

        • Susan

          I never implied in the scenario that donating a kidney is trivial. The scenario imagines a particular kind of situation in which the father suffers no significant permanent injury from the kidney donation

          Which is completely inaccurate in the case of kidney donation, pregnancy and childbirth.

          Why present a false scenario when the problem has been pointed out?

          See, Judith Jarvis Thomson’s A Defense of Abortion.

          You haven’t even acknowledged the problem with violating an individual’s bodily autonomy.

          You’ve been doing this for years.

        • GW3: I never implied in the scenario that donating a kidney is trivial. The scenario imagines a particular kind of situation in which the father suffers no significant permanent injury from the kidney donation

          S4: Which is completely inaccurate in the case of kidney donation, pregnancy and childbirth.

          GW4: False. In some cases after a kidney donation or a pregnancy, the subject goes on to live a mostly normal life with no significant permanent injury. I am focusing on those. Of course there are others in which this is not the case. You are viewing all the cases as equally impaired, which is a cognitive error on your part.

          S4: Why present a false scenario when the problem has been pointed out?

          GW4: The scenario is not a false one. It accurately describes some situations of kidney donation. Why do you ignore those?

          S4: See, Judith Jarvis Thomson’s A Defense of Abortion.

          GW4: I’ve read her work. So what? Would you like to quote her and discuss a conclusion she drew? Go ahead. I’d be happy to discuss it with you.

          S4: You haven’t even acknowledged the problem with violating an individual’s bodily autonomy.

          GW4: False again! All persons have a right to bodily autonomy, but in some cases this right comes into conflict with the right of another person and must be superceded. You don’t even acknowledge the problem of conflict of rights.

          S4: You’ve been doing this for years.

          GW4: Yes, I’ve been discussing abortion for years. Have you?

        • T: What if two of children need kidney donations? Is the father obligated to sacrifice his life so that his two kids can have a chance at life?

          GW: No. That does not follow from the principle or analogy I presented.

          T: What if in addition to those two, the father has 70 other children. Sacrificing himself for those 2 leaves the others without a parent.

          GW: You are making a straw man argument here. In my example I did not advocate for the father to “sacrifice himself.”

          T: And really, kidney donation is not trivial.

          GW: Another straw man. Who said it was trivial? It is not trivial to the recipient, for sure.

        • GW1: The Parent Organ Donation Scenario:

          CL2: Why bother to make it a parent?

          GW2: Because parents have special moral duties to their own children that strangers do not have.

          CL2: If bodily autonomy is optional, organs can be removed without consent, and no one has the right to refuse to give a kidney to any child who needs it if they are a match.

          GW2: This is a straw man argument since I never said “bodily autonomy is optional.” I said that in special circumstances the right to life should supercede the right to bodily autonomy.

          CL2: Limiting the responsibility to parents is unnecessarily cruel to those dying children whose parents are either not a good enough match or who can’t donate for other medical reasons.

          GW2: So are you proposing that adults be coerced to donate organs to dying children who are strangers to them? If so, please defend that idea.

          CL2: Limiting it to ‘does not expect to be harmed much’ is also not a reasonable standard if we are comparing this to a pregnancy. Regardless of the harm it might do, if the kidney is a match, that dying child clearly deserves to have it more than the adult person with two kidneys.

          GW2: I disagree. It is a reasonable standard in both cases. The degree of harm would need to be defined.

          CL2: People would just get a notice in the mail that they needed to show up for their organ donation on Tuesday. No refusal allowed. The person donating’s health insurance may or may not cover the procedure but that is also immaterial. Their job may or may not be waiting for them after they have recovered from the organ removal. They may or may not be paid while they are recovering. Again, not relevant. They have no choice but to donate a kidney if some child needs it. After all, the right of any child to live clearly supersedes any adult’s right to decide what is done with pieces of their body.

          GW2: I disagree. The moral duties of parents to protect and save their own children exceed their moral duties to protect and save children not their own.

          CL2: We don’t even have to limit it to children. If forced organ donation is possible, why shouldn’t anyone who needs an organ simply demand it from anyone who can donate? It should not require the consent of the person with a spare body part they need, because surely the sick person’s right to life would supersede the bodily autonomy of anyone else who is in better health.

          GW2: I’m not suggesting that. If you are, then make your argument for it.

          CL2: If bodily autonomy is optional, why do you assume that yours will reman intact?

          GW2: Straw man. I never said bodily autonomy is optional. See above.

          CL2: I am not willing to give up that much bodily autonomy. I doubt most people would be OK with that.

          GW2: But this issue is not about subjective willingness. It is about moral duty. I claim that you have a moral duty to protect your own children in the manner I have suggested here. I was asked to present a scenario in which a man’s right to bodily autonomy should be superceded, and I gave a good one.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          GW2: Because parents have special moral duties to their own children that strangers do not have.

          Kindly add “I believe” to these nonsense propositions you’re spouting.

        • Kindly add “I believe” to your claim that they are “nonsense propositions.” Better yet, just say “I disagree” or “i believe you are mistaken.”

          You do not believe that parents have special moral duties to their own children? If so, please defend that position.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          You repeat a proposition you made in another comment. Is it in fact the case that the father is “required by law” to donate an organ to save the life of his child? I suspect the answer is no, which would mean that your understanding of law is deficient, and you are trying to pass off your personal opinion as standing law.

        • I already clarified that. See above. I’m arguing for the way it should be, not necessarily the way it is.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          … seeing the fetus as not a person (or not 100% of a person) is the key issue to me.

          It’s the opposite for me. Seeing that the pregnant woman is a person (and not just a baby factory) is the key issue for me.

        • But then their response becomes, “Sure, the woman is a person, but so is the fetus! We’re not asking for the life of the woman, just some inconvenience, so don’t ask for the life of the fetus.”

          That’s why pointing out that the fetus is in fact not a person helps with that clash.

          The next step on that debate is usually to redefine “person” so that the ZEF is a person from day one. My response: I don’t care what you call it. You tell me then: what is the newborn that the single fertilized human egg 9 months earlier wasn’t? If it’s not a 9-month-long spectrum of personhood, then it’s certainly a 9-month-long spectrum of something, and that’s what the newborn is that the zygote wasn’t.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          But then their response becomes…

          My response to their response is to go into how much our society values bodily autonomy; with the organ donation examples I’m sure I have presented here before.

        • Yes, the right to bodily autonomy is very important, but it should not be considered absolute. There are situations in which it should be superceded by the right to life of another person. This is sometimes the case with pregnancy, but since you brought up organ donation, I’ll give an example in that area.

          The Parent Organ Donation Scenario:
          A child needs a kidney transplant quickly or it will die. The healthy father of the child has a matching kidney for the child and will be harmed not at all or only a little if he donates one of his kidneys. But the father is reluctant. Should the father be required by ethics and law to donate one of his kidneys to save the life of his own child? Yes, because parents have special duties to protect the lives of their children that others do not have. And the right to life of the child supercedes the right of bodily autonomy of the father under these circumstances.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          Should the father be required by ethics and law to donate one of his kidneys to save the life of his own child? Yes, because parents have special duties to protect the lives of their children that others do not have. And the right to life of the child supercedes the right of bodily autonomy of the father under these circumstances.

          Is it in fact the case the the father is “required by law”? I do not think so. Perhaps you think that the father is ethically obligated, or you think the law should be changed, but I would be very much surprised to learn that the law is as you state.

          Of all the “organ” donations, the one with the least impact on the donor is probably a blood donation. For Offenders Who Can’t Pay, It’s a Pint of Blood or Jail Time

          Ms. Evans said that after receiving a complaint, LifeSouth quarantined and tested the blood, tried to contact all the donors and eventually discarded nearly all of the blood units collected.

        • GW1: Should the father be required by ethics and law to donate one of his kidneys to save the life of his own child? Yes, because parents have special duties to protect the lives of their children that others do not have. And the right to life of the child supercedes the right of bodily autonomy of the father under these circumstances.

          TOD2: Is it in fact the case the the father is “required by law”? I do not think so. Perhaps you think that the father is ethically obligated, or you think the law should be changed, but I would be very much surprised to learn that the law is as you state.

          GW2: I don’t know if there is any jurisdiction in the world which requires this. That is why I claimed that the father SHOULD be required by ethics and law.

          TOD2: Of all the “organ” donations, the one with the least impact on the donor is probably a blood donation. For Offenders Who Can’t Pay, It’s a Pint of Blood or Jail Time

          GW2: Are you proposing that inmates be coerced into giving blood donations? If so, please give your rationale for that.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          The right to bodily autonomy IS absolute, in the United States, at least.

          McFall v. Shimp ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McFall_v._Shimp )

        • It might be from the legal perspective, but not from the ethical perspective. Where necessary, the law should be changed to be ethical.

        • Kodie

          You don’t know shit about ethics, as you want to control women and enslave them over a blood clot you think belongs to you.

        • This is another uncivil remark by you. If you continue with this, you and I won’t have a discussion. Try to make your points in a civil manner.

        • Kodie

          Nope.

        • Yep.

        • Bob, I read your essay about the spectrum of personhood, and I disagree. I hope you will read my article in Skeptic magazine or eSkeptic for a different view.

          As the zygote grows and develops the probability that it will become a person increases, but the fetus does not become a person until near the end of the 24th week post conception.

          If there is a spectrum of personhood, it would last a few hours, not weeks or months.

        • Yes, I’ll try to get to that article.

          Your analysis makes no sense–the fetus becomes a person at 24 weeks vs. hours. Please rephrase.

        • Aram

          I think he means that at the 24-week period, the fetus because a person within a matter of hours at that juncture. He’s convinced himself 24 weeks is the magic number, but doesn’t want to be too exact, so admits there’s a question of some hours in there where the fetus rushes through the spectrum into personhood. That’s my take on his bizarre certainty, in any case.

        • A: I think he means that at the 24-week period, the fetus becomes a person within a matter of hours at that juncture.

          GW: Yes, that is a good description of my idea.

          A: He’s convinced himself 24 weeks is the magic number, but doesn’t want to be too exact, so admits there’s a question of some hours in there where the fetus rushes through the spectrum into personhood. That’s my take on his bizarre certainty, in any case.

          GW: There is no magic number. This is a number supported by research, theory, and consensus of experts. There is no ” bizarre certainty” either. This is evidence-based high probability.

        • Aram

          Okay Gary, no bizarre certainty at all, Gary, what was I thinking, Gary, you’re totally open to being wrong, Gary, which would seem likely as there is absolutely NO consensus as to when personhood begins, Gary, and yet you’re absolutely certain that you’re not wrong, Gary, meaning… Oh, wait… Well shucks, Gary. Seems you don’t know what ‘bizarre certainty’ means after all. Goodbye Gary.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Your analysis makes no sense…

          Not for the first time either.

        • My explanation may have been a little confusing. I claim that the fetus becomes a person when it acquires the capacity for consciousness and this occurs at approximately the end of the 24th week post conception.

          As I understand your idea, you envision a spectrum of personhood which lasts from the zygote stage till death. I don’t agree with this idea. However, there may be a few hours during development, around the 24th week, when consciousness begins and it is “fuzzy.”

        • your thinking is roughly the same as mine.

        • Kodie

          You might not be a person because you have no working brain.

        • There you go again — making another uncivil remark. I had hoped that you would restrain your hatred, but you didn’t.

          Because you continue to make personal attacks against me and/or others, to make flawed excuses for your misbehavior, to fail to take responsibility for your misconduct, and/or to enable others to do the same, I’m not going to waste my time with you any longer. In the future I will not read, think about, or respond to your posts. I will devote my time to others who are both able and willing to have a civil and rational discussion of controversial subjects. You are blacklisted and blocked.

        • Kodie

          You’re so funny because you think anyone gives a shit about whether you talk to them, since everything you say is HORRIBLE.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Bob, FWIW, according to the Supreme Court, personhood is irrelevant when one human is demanding the use of another human’s organ(s).

          McFall v. Shimp ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McFall_v._Shimp ) made that settled law.

          The forced-birthers don’t want to hear it, though.

        • Thanks. Now get Gary Whittenberger to accept it.

        • If the SCOTUS made that conclusion, then it was surely mistaken. Personhood is relevant. It is ethical for one person to use another person’s organs, even without their consent, in some circumstances where it will save the life of a person. The right to life supercedes the right to bodily autonomy in some situations. And we have been discussing some of them.

        • Kodie

          Where did you pass the bar?

        • We all agree that the zygote is not a person. And we all agree that the newborn (39 weeks) is a person. But we disagree on when the ZEEF becomes a person during its development. By “we” I mean the secular humanists in this discussion.

        • Uh, OK. Do you and I disagree on something relevant here?

        • The key issue for me is that the woman and the man who produced the fetus are both persons and the fetus itself becomes a person before it is born. And therefore, the rights of three different persons may need to be taken into account. It is not as simple as the pro-life and pro-choice groups make it out to be.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          … and the fetus itself becomes a person before it is born.

          I disagree with you about that. Since you have presented no supporting arguments, I am not obligated to present any counter-arguments. This has all been done a million times on the Internet already.

        • I disagree with you on that. For supporting evidence, reasons, and arguments, please read my article in eSkeptic here:
          https://www.skeptic.com/reading_room/how-science-might-inform-personhood-abortion-rights/

          Yes, this has all been done a million times on the internet already, usually mistakenly.

        • Pofarmer

          How can something that is 100% dependent in another for survival be a person? Second issue would be, yes, brain wave patterns come together at around 24 weeks, but there really isn’t anything like “consciousness” till after birth.

        • P: How can something that is 100% dependent in another for survival be a person?

          GW: It’s easy. A human person is a mammalian organism with homo sapiens’ DNA and with the current capacity for consciousness and therefore with the current capacity to know something.

          P: Second issue would be, yes, brain wave patterns come together at around 24 weeks, but there really isn’t anything like “consciousness” till after birth.

          GW: This is a false claim. The capacity for consciousness is acquired around 24 weeks post conception.

        • Pofarmer

          I think this is the point where you start ignoring evidence, Gary.

          Its physical substrate, the thalamo-cortical complex that provides
          consciousness with its highly elaborate content, begins to be in place
          between the 24th and 28th week of gestation. Roughly two months later
          synchrony of the electroencephalographic (EEG) rhythm across both
          cortical hemispheres signals the onset of global neuronal integration.

          Thus, many of the circuit elements necessary for consciousness are in
          place by the third trimester. By this time, preterm infants can survive
          outside the womb under proper medical care. And as it is so much easier
          to observe and interact with a preterm baby than with a fetus of the
          same gestational age in the womb, the fetus is often considered to be
          like a preterm baby, like an unborn newborn. But this notion disregards
          the unique uterine environment: suspended in a warm and dark cave,
          connected to the placenta that pumps blood, nutrients and hormones into
          its growing body and brain, the fetus is asleep.

          So, in other words, the capacity for consciousness starts developing at 24-28 weeks. But is not in place for at least another 8 weeks. And, even at that point, the Fetus is kept in an unconscious state in the womb.

        • “Its physical substrate, the thalamo-cortical complex that provides consciousness with its highly elaborate content, begins to be in place
          between the 24th and 28th week of gestation.”

          Your interpretation of this statement is liberal, while mine is conservative. I conclude that a fetus could be or might be conscious at the 24th week. In the context we are discussing, a conservative interpretation should be used in order to minimize false negative errors, i.e concluding that a fetus is not conscious when it actually is.

          But even if your liberal interpretation is used, the onset of consciousness would occur at 32-36 weeks, which is still before birth.

          Also, you cite only one of the several sources which I used in my article.

        • Pofarmer

          You would expect some higher brain function to be apparent before birth. Yes. But simply because the cortexes start to coordinate, doesn’t mean the things necessary for consciousness are present. Just like the idea of a Fetus feeling “pain” at 12 weeks is nonsense because none of the structures indicitive of pain are in place. Same for consciousness. It simply ain’t happening yet. And even at 32-36 weeks when it might be possible, conditions inside the Uterus prevent it. I don’t think any of this is controversial.

        • P: You would expect some higher brain function to be apparent before birth. Yes.

          GW: Right now, my claim is for consciousness, not necessarily other “higher brain functions.”

          P: But simply because the cortexes start to coordinate, doesn’t mean the things necessary for consciousness are present. Just like the idea of a Fetus feeling “pain” at 12 weeks is nonsense because none of the structures indicitive of pain are in place. Same for consciousness. It simply ain’t happening yet. And even at 32-36 weeks when it might be possible, conditions inside the Uterus prevent it. I don’t think any of this is controversial.

          GW: The weight of the evidence goes against your position. In my article I presented several articles in support of my claim about consciousness. Did you read all of it?

        • Pofarmer

          I didn’t read any of it. And I won’t. If you have research, you can link it here. If you have an argument, you can make it here.

        • Kodie

          But the capacity for consciousness of animals we slaughter doesn’t matter, or the animals we exterminate, while the capacity of a fetus to plan on kissing someone someday is imaginary. “Cutting a life short” in this sense, the sentimental life milestones that the fetus cannot even imagine is the usual foundation for the argument. Like, we don’t know if this kid is another dumbfuck Gary Whittenberger, who will never kiss anyone. Maybe they are Beethoven instead, but they’re probably going to be a numbnuts like you, given the current distribution of the kinds of people who already exist and there are too many of them. Once they’re born, you can’t do anything about it, but before they are, they aren’t missing all the life things you think they are required to experience. As someone with kind of a shitty life that’s ok sometimes, and not suicidal, but I wouldn’t miss being alive if I had been aborted, and if I had been miscarried, and even with some capacity for consciousness or sensation, whatever pain would be gone pretty fast. You don’t think of the pain of any bugs you squish, or any mice you may trap, or any humans you cause great suffering to, like us, so I can’t imagine dying as a fetus feels any more painful than dealing with you. It’s not being burned alive, watching yourself die, or the kind of interminable suffering of a parent of an abducted child that is never found or solved. It’s putting up with a total self-centered douchebag who is not smart, is a monster at ethics, and won’t stop being so boring about how you don’t like swear words. I think being aborted feels a lot less painful than that, even, and when it’s over, Gary Whittenberger never comes back.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Nope.

          They had *sex*, which was hopefully fun for both of them.

          So those scales balance.

          If the guy wants the pregnancy, but the woman doesn’t, too fucking bad.

        • H: If the guy wants the pregnancy, but the woman doesn’t, too fucking bad.

          GW: Your hostile words are counter-productive. Please set them aside.

          GW: The decision to have sexual intercourse is separate from the decision on the disposition of a ZEEF which is created.

        • Kodie

          Get bent, you fucking prude moron. Deal with the points or fuck off. Don’t hold this blog to YOUR selfish standards IF YOU WANT TO DISCUSS THESE THINGS WITH US. Wade through it and respond to relevant points, or please fuck off forever.

        • What am I missing? The woman is the incubator; it’s not 50/50 between the man and woman. Since the single cell isn’t a person, the woman has the majority of the votes, and terminating the pregnancy is one of her options.

        • Yes, the zygote isn’t a person, but it is property jointly owned by the man and the woman who created it. The woman owns the life-sustaining womb in which the zygote is lodged, but she doesn’t totally own the zygote itself. Here is another analogy which you might find more useful:

          The Fertility Clinic Scenario:
          Suppose you are the owner of a fertility clinic. Inside the clinic your staff accepts sperm and eggs from men and women, respectively. Your staff unites a sperm and an egg, producing an embryo, which is then deposited in a freezer for later use. If an embryo is removed from the freezer for more than four minutes, the embryo is irreparably destroyed. As the owner of the clinic and the freezer are you ethically and legally entitled to walk into your clinic and remove an embryo from the freezer, thereby destroying it? Of course not! You own the storage container, but a man and a woman own the embryo. You may not remove it and destroy it without their consent.

        • I think you need to go to Analogy School. The man and woman are symmetric here, and the embryo is easily moved from place to place. Until there are incubators besides women, we get back to the inherent problem: she must put more effort and risk into the process than he does. If she’s not on board, she has 51% of the votes to change course.

        • I’ve been to Analogy School. Maybe you need a refresher course. No analogy is perfect. All a good analogy needs to do is have substantial similarity to the original situation. You know this.

          I disagree with your conclusion. In all three examples we have discussed the man and the woman are equal owners of the animate property. Ownership does not change because somebody sustains the property. One co-owner of the property is not entitled to destroy the property without the consent of the other co-owner. And no owner of the container of the property has this entitlement either.

          Pro-choicers have as much trouble changing their minds as pro-lifers. Anyone who has thought they were correct about some idea for years has trouble changing. I get it. I was a Christian for many years and change was hard.

        • In all three examples we have discussed the man and the woman are equal owners of the animate property.

          And there’s the problem. In the case of pregnancy, “equal” is what it ain’t. Your analogies, if you insist on using them, must take this into account.

        • We disagree. I believe that in all three cases the man and the woman are equal owners of the property, whereas you believe that the woman is a greater owner of the property in at least the pregnancy case. Your argument seems to be based on her providing sustenance to the ZEEF, but in the two analogous situations people maintain the property, but it is clear that this does not alter ownership. And so, you are engaged in special pleading. I don’t think your position here is reasonable.

          Again, the ownership of the property does not change because one owner happens to be a temporary caretaker of the property. The only situation where I think this might be valid is if the parties agreed to this arrangement AHEAD OF TIME. And by “ahead of time,” here I mean prior to sexual intercourse. The couple might agree to this: “If Jill becomes pregnant, then she will be the sole owner of the ZEEF.” Otherwise, the default ownership distribution must be 50-50.

          In addition, in lieu of a presexual agreement, the couple could mutually decide to change the 50-50 default at the time the woman notifies the man that she is pregnant.

        • Kodie

          Why do you think a man who desires, i.e. lusts, after a sexual relationship with a woman, and can’t wait to ejaculate inside her, has any percent of ownership of the fate of his sperm? They’re gone, get over it. You wanted a hot night, not to make a baby, and maybe she wanted a hot night too, and maybe you’re not the “owner” of the sperm that fertilized her egg! What kind of nagging, stalking, bullshit is this? I know, you’re going to dwell on the word “bullshit” because you’re a manipulative and self-centered asshole, instead of address an actual argument. No, I will not bend to your will. I will not fucking bend to your fucking will. You are seriously demented if you think women you fucked (not that I am one of them) have to bend to your fucking will – that’s the point. I will not fucking bend to your fucking will because you’re a misogynist, you’re a prude, you’re amazingly arrogant, and that doesn’t add up to a quality interlocutor. It adds up to someone who says a lot of words, and demonstrates to normal people what an asshole he is, and not putting up with people who make points makes you not just a tone troll, but a goddamned fucking regular troll.

          I dismiss you for being an asshole manipulative misogynist prude and potential enslaver of women.

        • Kodie

          Your analogies are as terrible as a fundie Christian, which makes me think you are not smarter than a fundie Christian and may actually be one. Were you home-schooled?

        • Kodie

          I would say she has 99.9%, if not even more. Women are famous for being accused of wanting babies, and men are famous for fleeing the scene and denying paternity because they’re not the ones who get pregnant, but you get a woman who is not interested in raising a child plus a man who actually wants to be responsible for a baby when he doesn’t have to be, you get a situation where a man controls what a woman wants to do with her body, i.e. get an abortion.

        • Sounds about right. I went with 51% to hopefully bring GW on board.

        • Kodie

          I think that’s the wrong approach because it gives 49%, which is a lot, to a man, and gives 51% to a woman, which isn’t enough. Gary Witlessberger isn’t getting on board. He’s in love with himself.

        • Kodie

          She owns the zygote, because it’s inside her body. How can someone else own part of anything inside someone else’s body? You let that sperm fly, it’s not yours anymore.

        • Kodie

          If a fetus was a person, you could file for a fetus certificate and gain citizenship, which is very convenient if you’re an immigrant. All you have to do is cross the border pregnant, and your baby is an American citizen.

        • A human person is a mammalian organism with homo sapiens’ DNA and with the current capacity for consciousness and therefore with the current capacity to know something.

        • Kodie

          I don’t think you know anything, so you are not qualified.

        • Cynthia

          For me, it is more that I see that women are people, whether or not they happen to be pregnant.

          There is a LOT that people can do if they truly care about fetuses. The only options that I oppose are those that involve depriving the pregnant woman of her basic human rights.

          Options that don’t deprive women of rights and that would reduce abortion or improve fetal outcomes include:

          Promoting free access to the most effective forms of contraception

          Improving the status of women

          Stronger laws against pregnancy discrimination

          Universal health care

          Providing services to pregnant women that go beyond fake medical services, empty promises of help, scare tactics, preaching at them, intimidating them or lecturing them. Instead, there should be a registry of services that includes screened volunteers to help those with children and/or medical complications, financial assistance, housing assistance, legal assistance, support groups, counselling , pregnancy and baby items, etc.

          Care for post-partum depression

          There is more, but I think that’s a good to do list to start. We have data on what factors commonly cause women to seek abortions. Address those factors, abortion rate decreases.

        • Yep, good list. And some of those would actually address everyone’s goal of reducing unwanted pregnancy.

      • Pofarmer

        I dunno. I can realize that a fetus, as a potential member of the human race, has some value, while also realizing full well that that potential value never out weighs the value or rights of the independent woman carrying it.

        • My approach to this: up to the point of viability, the woman decides what it is. If it’s a precious baby that she’s already named, then that’s what it is. If it’s a life-changing catastrophe that must be removed, then that’s what it is.

        • But Bob, that ignores the fact that the man is 50% responsible for the creation of the zygote, embryo, or fetus, and the fact that we know what it is.

        • True, but he contributes as little as 0% of the effort to bring the fetus to term (0% of he’s out of the picture, and more if he contributes financially). If you say it’s 60/40 her and him, she calls the shots.

        • True, but ownership is established at creation of the zygote, and the man and the woman are equally responsible for its creation. It doesn’t matter if she cares for the property more than he does. He is still the half owner. She should not destroy the property without his consent.

          Try this analogy:
          The Pet Dog Scenario:
          A man and a woman bought a pet dog together when they were married. Although the dog is jointly owned by the man and the woman, the man came to love the dog more than the woman did. For a number of reasons the couple gets a divorce. As part of the divorce settlement the man gains full ownership of the dog and the woman gains full ownership of the house. Before the man can move out of the house he is called to serve in the Army in Afghanistan. While he is gone the woman feeds and otherwise cares for the dog, and the man agrees to pay her for this service. Would it be ethical and should it be legal for the woman to kill the dog or sell the dog without his consent while the man is gone? Of course not! Compare to an abortion situation.

        • There are health risks in a pregnancy, and there is much discomfort. That is born 100% by the woman. If he wants to continue the pregnancy and she doesn’t, she would be putting more into the process. Call the contribution 51% vs. 49%, if you want to, but she would still be able to decide.

          It doesn’t matter if she cares for the property more than he does. He is still the half owner.

          I see no use in your dog analogy. This one seems more relevant.Say you and I own a business 50/50. For the last 3 years, I’ve been absentee, but you’ve been on the ground every day, keeping the business running. Now you want to liquidate and I don’t. Ethically, who has more say in the matter?

        • BS2: There are health risks in a pregnancy, and there is much discomfort. That is born 100% by the woman. If he wants to continue the pregnancy and she doesn’t, she would be putting more into the process. Call the contribution 51% vs. 49%, if you want to, but she would still be able to decide.

          GW2: I agree with your first point on discomfort and health risks. This is why the man should pay a “womb rental” or “incubation fee” to the woman in the case where she wants to kill the ZEEF and he wants to save it.

          GW1: It doesn’t matter if she cares for the property more than he does. He is still the half owner.

          BS2: I see no use in your dog analogy.

          GW2: I’m sorry that you don’t see its value. I think it is an excellent analogy. Most people would agree that the woman should not be allowed to kill the pet dog just because she happens to be caring for it temporarily.

          BS2: This one seems more relevant.Say you and I own a business 50/50. For the last 3 years, I’ve been absentee, but you’ve been on the ground every day, keeping the business running. Now you want to liquidate and I don’t. Ethically, who has more say in the matter?

          GW2: We should have equal say.

        • GW2: I agree with your first point on discomfort and health risks. This is why the man should pay a “womb rental” or “incubation fee” to the woman in the case where she wants to kill the ZEEF and he wants to save it.

          I hear that you have a basement in your house. I’ve calculated the fair market rental for such a space, which fits within my budget. I’ll take it. I move in on Monday, bunkie.

          GW1: It doesn’t matter if she cares for the property more than he does. He is still the half owner.

          Given her larger investment in the project, she has more votes.

          BS2: This one seems more relevant.Say you and I own a business 50/50. For the last 3 years, I’ve been absentee, but you’ve been on the ground every day, keeping the business running. Now you want to liquidate and I don’t. Ethically, who has more say in the matter?
          GW2: We should have equal say.

          Put that to a vote, and I predict the majority will disagree.

        • Kodie

          You’re gross

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Wrong again.

          Half the genetic material,maybe, but less than a millionth of the resultant (if born) baby.

          If the guy wants half the say, he needs to provide ALL the money to keep the pregnancy going, as the woman is putting her body and life on the line, AND he needs to pay her as a surrogate mother, assuming she wants to continue the pregnancy.

        • Greg G.

          That would be 50% of the nuclear DNA if it is a girl and a little less if it’s a boy but the mitochondrial DNA is from the mother.

          It’s possible to get an extra chromosome, too.

        • Once the zygote is formed, it is co-owned by the man and the woman.

          Here is the principle I am using:
          If two or more persons create, invent, assemble, manufacture, or otherwise cause the existence of some product, then by default the product is property owned by all those persons in a manner proportional to their contributions or to their mutually agreed assignment. Decisions to sell, give away, loan, transfer, modify, or destroy the property must be made by all the owners. Destruction of the property is irrevocable and thus should require unanimous consent of the owners.

        • Greg G.

          The woman is not an inert container. The fetus steals calcium from her bones and iron from her blood. It is eating her, in a way. She is not obligated to permit that. If she was dead, you couldn’t harvest her blood, bones, or organs without permission.

          You give a woman fewer rights than a corpse.

          A fertilized egg in a test tube isn’t a fitting analogy either. It is not eating the mother against her will.

        • GG: The woman is not an inert container.

          GW: The woman’s womb serves as a special container for the ZEEF, but the woman herself is not a container.

          GG: The fetus steals calcium from her bones and iron from her blood. It is eating her, in a way.

          GW: No, the ZEEF cannot and does not steal. Also, it does not eat the woman, not in any way. The woman provides nutrients to the ZEEF through the umbilical cord.

          GG: She is not obligated to permit that.

          GW: Yes, in some circumstances she is obligated to maintain the ZEEF inside her until it is born.

          GG: If she was dead, you couldn’t harvest her blood, bones, or organs without permission.

          GW: That’s funny. Getting permission from dead people is pretty difficult.

          GG: You give a woman fewer rights than a corpse.

          GW: A woman has many rights, but a corpse has none.

          GG: A fertilized egg in a test tube isn’t a fitting analogy either. It is not eating the mother against her will.

          GW: The Fertility Clinic Scenario is a very good analogy. The ZEEF doesn’t “eat the mother against her will.”

        • Greg G.

          GW: The woman’s womb serves as a special container for the ZEEF, but the woman herself is not a container.

          They are connected. The woman is a container of the container but you are drawing a line where there should not be one. The womb is a part of the woman.

          GW: No, the ZEEF cannot and does not steal. Also, it does not eat the woman, not in any way. The woman provides nutrients to the ZEEF through the umbilical cord.

          Farmers put scarecrows in grainfields to keep the crows from stealing the grain. The farmer does not want the crows to do it, so they are, in effect, being robbed. If the woman is an unwilling host, the nutrients are being taken from her against her will. That is effectively being stolen from her. Parts of her body are being taken from her, molecule by molecule, and consumed by the fetus. If the woman is unwilling, she is not providing, her body is being manipulated against her will.

          GW: Yes, in some circumstances she is obligated to maintain the ZEEF inside her until it is born.

          Yes, there are Catholic countries that force nine year old girls who were raped by their fathers to have the baby. The Catholic Church has been known to excommunicate the mother and daughter in such a situation but not the rapist father. I don’t think it is right to force a woman to carry a baby. It is kidnapping and slavery.

          GW: That’s funny. Getting permission from dead people is pretty difficult.

          It is done while they are alive. Those people are called “organ donors”. You can have the designation on the drivers license. But it is not required. Those who chose not to do so during their life are not compelled to do so after death, even temporarily.

          GW: A woman has many rights, but a corpse has none.

          An organ from the corpse of a person who did not sign an organ donor form cannot be used even temporarily against their unstated will.

          You want to compel the use of a woman’s organs against her expressly stated will.

        • GW1: The woman’s womb serves as a special container for the ZEEF, but the woman herself is not a container.

          GG2: They are connected. The woman is a container of the container but you are drawing a line where there should not be one. The womb is a part of the woman.

          GW2: Yes, the womb is a part of the woman — a part that functions as a special container for the ZEEF, a “climate controlled” container.

          GW1: No, the ZEEF cannot and does not steal. Also, it does not eat the woman, not in any way. The woman provides nutrients to the ZEEF through the umbilical cord.

          GG2: Farmers put scarecrows in grainfields to keep the crows from stealing the grain. The farmer does not want the crows to do it, so they are, in effect, being robbed.

          GW2: No, the crows eat the grain, and that is their nature. They don’t steal the grain. They have no concept of the grain being the property of the farmers.

          GG2: If the woman is an unwilling host, the nutrients are being taken from her against her will. That is effectively being stolen from her. Parts of her body are being taken from her, molecule by molecule, and consumed by the fetus. If the woman is unwilling, she is not providing, her body is being manipulated against her will.

          GW2: The ZEEF uses the nutrients provided by the woman, and that is its nature. The ZEEF isn’t stealing anything. It has no concept of property. Also, the woman does not start as an unwilling host. She starts as a willing host. When she consented to sexual intercourse, she was fully aware that the act of the couple might lead to the creation of a ZEEF to which she would provide nutrients at least temporarily. But the decision for her to continue to be a host is a separate decision for her and the man to make since they are co-owners of it.

          GW1: Yes, in some circumstances she is obligated to maintain the ZEEF inside her until it is born.

          GG2: Yes, there are Catholic countries that force nine year old girls who were raped by their fathers to have the baby. The Catholic Church has been known to excommunicate the mother and daughter in such a situation but not the rapist father. I don’t think it is right to force a woman to carry a baby. It is kidnapping and slavery.

          GW2: Rape is not one of the circumstances in which the woman is obligated to maintain the ZEEF beyond the point she becomes aware of her pregnancy. I think we agree on that point.

          GW1: That’s funny. Getting permission from dead people is pretty difficult.

          GG2: It is done while they are alive. Those people are called “organ donors”. You can have the designation on the drivers license. But it is not required. Those who chose not to do so during their life are not compelled to do so after death, even temporarily.

          GW2: Still, the way you mistakenly worded your thought was funny. I hope you know that in some countries (Australia might be one) all persons are considered prospective organ donors by default. If they do not opt out, then their good organs are harvested after their death without their ever having given explicit consent for this. In other words, consent is assumed. In the situation we are discussing the woman’s consent to temporarily provide nutrients to any ZEEF which is created is assumed at the time she has sexual intercourse. The decision to continue then rests with the couple after she discovers and immediately discloses her pregnancy to the man.

          GW1: A woman has many rights, but a corpse has none.

          GG2: An organ from the corpse of a person who did not sign an organ donor form cannot be used even temporarily against their unstated will.

          GW2: In some countries it can. In those countries the law has been formulated in a way contrary to your ethics. However, we are talking about what the ethics should be in the pregnancy situation.

          GG2: You want to compel the use of a woman’s organs against her expressly stated will.

          GW2: No, that is a misstatement of my position. I want the woman to be compelled to nurture and protect the ZEEF in some circumstances even when she does not want to do so. One circumstance is where no explicit agreement was reached prior to sexual intercourse on the disposition of any resulting ZEEF, the woman wants to abort and the man wants to save the ZEEF, the man pays the woman “womb rental,” and the man takes full custody and care of the newborn baby when it comes. That is a perfectly rational position and the correct one for the conflict of rights and interests we are considering here. So far, I don’t think any of your objections are valid.

          GW2: Is it possible that you could change your mind on this issue?

        • Greg G.

          GW2: Yes, the womb is a part of the woman — a part that functions as a special container for the ZEEF, a “climate controlled” container.

          The womb is taking energy and nutrients from the woman’s whole body and delivering them to the contents. It’s a wonderful thing if the woman wants to have a baby, not so much if she doesn’t, and it is servitude when it is forced upon her.

          GW2: Is it possible that you could change your mind on this issue?

          Certainly. I have changed my mind by considering the facts from the position of a woman who does not wish to be a baby factory. It takes a little empathy, though.

        • Pofarmer

          I think ole GW here needs to come to grips with his own misogyny.

        • GW2: Yes, the womb is a part of the woman — a part that functions as a special container for the ZEEF, a “climate controlled” container.

          GG3: The womb is taking energy and nutrients from the woman’s whole body and delivering them to the contents. It’s a wonderful thing if the woman wants to have a baby, not so much if she doesn’t, and it is servitude when it is forced upon her.

          GW3: Look Greg, we agree on the biology, but we disagree on the philosophical interpretation of the facts. Anybody is displeased when they are coerced to do something they don’t want to do, but that does not mean the coercion is unethical or illegal. Also, not all coercion is “servitude.” Instead, of using emotionally-laden terms like “servitude, slavery, enslavement, involuntary servitude” for this situation, let’s keep the focus on whether what I propose is ethical or not. I think it is.

          GW2: Is it possible that you could change your mind on this issue?

          GG3: Certainly. I have changed my mind by considering the facts from the position of a woman who does not wish to be a baby factory. It takes a little empathy, though.

          GW3: No, that’s not what I mean. Is it possible that you could change your mind from your current position which is heavily biased towards the woman’s rights?

        • Greg G.

          Instead, of using emotionally-laden terms like “servitude, slavery, enslavement, involuntary servitude” for this situation, let’s keep the focus on whether what I propose is ethical or not. I think it is.

          No, let’s not ignore those issues.

          Is it possible that you could change your mind from your current position which is heavily biased towards the woman’s rights?

          Sure. I can be persuaded by facts and argument. I used to be a Christian and now I am not.

          What do you have against women’s issues? Are you a misogynist?

        • GW3: Instead, of using emotionally-laden terms like “servitude, slavery, enslavement, involuntary servitude” for this situation, let’s keep the focus on whether what I propose is ethical or not. I think it is.

          GG4: No, let’s not ignore those issues.

          GW4: I’ve discussed those issues so many times with others and concluded that none of those terms apply to what I am proposing. But if you want to pick one, go ahead — define the term and rationally demonstrate how the term applies to what I am proposing.

          GW3: Is it possible that you could change your mind from your current position which is heavily biased towards the woman’s rights?

          GG4: Sure. I can be persuaded by facts and argument. I used to be a Christian and now I am not.

          GW4: Good to hear that. I too used to be a Christian but am a secular humanist and atheist now.

          GG4: What do you have against women’s issues? Are you a misogynist?

          GW4: I don’t have anything against womens’ issues. I discuss them all the time. No, I am definitely not a misogynist. When it comes to resolving conflicts in rights and interests, I am practical, rational, and ethical in my approach.

        • Greg G.

          GW4: I’ve discussed those issues so many times with others and concluded that none of those terms apply to what I am proposing. But if you want to pick one, go ahead — define the term and rationally demonstrate how the term applies to what I am proposing.

          You are trying to simplify the considerations to make it easier to come to your preferred conclusion. The man’s contribution is miniscule and his take away was immense pleasure. The woman’s contributions are huge burdens whether she enjoyed the act or not. It is life-risking to carry a baby to term. You try to equate the costs and burdens of the man with the woman. That alone invalidates your whole argument.

          I haven’t bothered to read past that point more than once.

        • GW4: I’ve discussed those issues so many times with others and concluded that none of those terms apply to what I am proposing. But if you want to pick one, go ahead — define the term and rationally demonstrate how the term applies to what I am proposing.

          GG5: You are trying to simplify the considerations to make it easier to come to your preferred conclusion.

          GW5: Yes, I am trying to simplify the considerations but not for the reason you state here.

          GG5: The man’s contribution is miniscule and his take away was immense pleasure. The woman’s contributions are huge burdens whether she enjoyed the act or not. It is life-risking to carry a baby to term. You try to equate the costs and burdens of the man with the woman. That alone invalidates your whole argument.

          GW5: That is a diversion. You did not pick one of your emotionally-laden terms (e.g. “enslavement”), define it, and rationally demonstrate how the term applies in the current case. Try to continue down the path you started.

        • Kodie

          No, you’re delusional and arrogant and oppressive in your approach.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Instead, of using emotionally-laden terms…

          Says the person hung up on “civility” ffs.

          Civility comes from the word civilis, which in Latin means “citizen”. Civility is caused by a person’s emotions or lack thereof. If a person is emotionally affected by the negative feedback that they get from other people in a psychologically normal manner then they are defined as civil.

        • Pofarmer

          Moved

        • Moved what? Moved your comment?

          You said “I think GW here needs to come to grips with his own misogyny.”

          My position isn’t misogynist. I look at the rights of the man, the woman, and the fetal person and devise a rational solution when their rights come into conflict. Unfortunately, the radical pro-choice position is misandrist.

        • Pofarmer

          You’re rational solution would cause a woman to be forced to bear the baby of her abusive boyfriend. It’s heinous. If that makes me radical so be it.

        • Kodie

          My position isn’t misogynist. I look at the rights of the man, the woman, and the fetal person and
          devise a rational solution when their rights come into conflict. Unfortunately, the radical pro-choice position is misandrist.

          The rational solution is the man gave up his rights after orgasm. Pregnancy and child-bearing takes more from the woman than the man… it takes ZERO FROM THE MAN and ALL FROM THE WOMAN, and gives her rights to the use of her own body that the man can’t control, making your plan misogynistic, because it controls the woman’s body by giving a man any rights he should know he doesn’t have. The radical “man-has-anything-to-say-about-her-choice” is clearly misogynist. He should step aside. If he wants to have a baby, meet a woman who wants to have a baby with him. Why does it have to be that “fetal person”, another meaningless concept. He is selfishly forcing one particular woman to have her body used when he is a MAN, he could impregnate other women if they would fucking discuss whether parenting is something they both want to do. Why can’t MEN get it through their fucking skulls. Use your big brain to think about this. Why would a man have rights to use a woman’s body to incubate a parasitic blood clot that used a bit of his sperm to pretend it’s a person that he half-owns? That is fucking nonsense.

        • epeeist

          One of the major reasons I stopped bothering interacting with Gary is the fact that when he is wrong he doesn’t just double down, he quadruple and octuple downs on his position.

        • Because the man provides one sperm and the woman provides one egg, the resulting zygote is 50-50 owned by the man and the woman. There is no doubt that the womb of the woman functions as a life-sustaining container for the ZEEF as it develops. The woman owns her womb, but she doesn’t own the ZEEF by herself. It is jointly owned. The woman should not be allowed to destroy jointly owned property without the consent of the co-owner, i.e. the man.

        • Kodie

          Because the man provides one 200 million sperm and the woman provides one egg, the resulting zygote is 50-50 .000000005-99.999999995 owned by the man and the woman.

          (Corrections in bold made by me)
          [LINK]What Happens to Sperm Once They’re Inside a Woman?

          So I think she can take his share by virtue of owning the womb.

        • Greg G.

          https://www.quora.com/What-is-the-relative-size-of-an-ovum-in-relation-to-a-sperm

          What is the relative size of an ovum in relation to a sperm?

          The human egg is about 130–200 micrometers (0.13–0.2 mm). It’s the largest cell in the human body; it’s even visible to the naked eye!

          The sperm is, on the other hand, the smallest human cell. It is 50-60 micrometers (0.05-0.06 mm) in length, 5 micrometers (0.005 mm) in width of the head.

        • Anthrotheist

          I agree with you 100%, and by extension with @BobSeidensticker:disqus’s response to you prior to this one (at least so long as the fetus-woman conflict is otherwise irreconcilable; I imagine the future will hold more options for earlier premature extraction/birth of near-viable fetuses).

          I have just had enough conversations to know that the thoughtful among the opposing side will always argue that the value of life is always greater than the value of independence (and will dismiss the point of potentiality entirely). They are wrong, of course; Patrick Henry was by no means an anomaly when he famously stated, “Give me liberty, or give me death.”

        • Pofarmer

          will always argue that the value of life is always greater than the value of independence That’s the authoritarian streak coming out. You don’t get to tell someone else what they value with regards to their own bodies. At lest in a civilized society.

        • But the biological mother doesn’t get to dictate the value of the fetus to the biological father, at least not in a civilized society. The conflict in values needs to be worked out in a fair way.

        • Pofarmer

          As long as it’s being carried in her body, yes, I think she does.

        • I disagree. The man and the woman jointly own the contents of the container, i.e. the ZEEF, but the woman owns the container, i.e. the womb. The owner of a container cannot ethically destroy jointly owned contents without the consent of all owners.

          Definition: A ZEEF is a human Zygote, Embryo, or Early Fetus living inside a woman. A ZEEF is not a person because it has not yet acquired the capacity for consciousness, which occurs at approximately 24 weeks post conception. When this new capacity is added the fetus becomes a fetal person.

        • Pofarmer

          I’m not even going to argue this stupidity. I thought we were done with slavery and ownership of other people?

        • Are you calling me “stupid”?

          Slavery is wrong. Ownership of other people is wrong. Neither of those are implicated in what I am describing.

        • Pofarmer

          I’m saying your argument here is stupid.

        • i disagree. How do you define a “stupid argument”?

        • Greg G.

          The man and the woman jointly own the contents of the container

          Significantly wrong. Nobody owns the contents.

          the woman owns the container

          Wrong again. The woman IS the container. She gets to decide what goes on inside her. Nobody else does.

        • Yes, the man and the woman jointly own the ZEEF which is the contents to which I am referring.

          No, the woman is not the container. The woman has, possesses, or owns a part of her body — her womb — which functions as a life-sustaining container for the ZEEF.

        • Greg G.

          The growing fetus is taking calcium from her bones and other nutrients. She is more than a mere container and maintains the right to withdraw consent for the arrangement.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          Bullshit. The man provides a spurt of semen with sperm, the woman BUILDS the pregnancy with her own body.

          That’s like claiming a person who puts up a 1/1,000,000th share of a corporation has voting rights equal to ALL the rest of the shareholders and employees.

        • H1: Bullshit.

          GW1: Your hostile language is counter-productive. Please use other phrases like “I disagree” or ” I think you are mistaken.”

          H1: The man provides a spurt of semen with sperm, the woman BUILDS the pregnancy with her own body.

          GW1: The man provides one sperm and the woman provides one egg. Together they create a zygote which is the jointly owned property of the couple. The woman doesn’t “build the pregnancy”. She experiences the pregnancy and sustains the life of the ZEEF while it is inside her.

          H1: That’s like claiming a person who puts up a 1/1,000,000th share of a corporation has voting rights equal to ALL the rest of the shareholders and employees.

          GW1: No, it’s like a corporation with two equal owners each with one vote.

        • Pofarmer

          I imagine the future will hold more options for earlier premature extraction/birth of near-viable fetuses).

          Which solves what? Who takes care of this near-viable fetus? Who pays for it? Etc, Etc, Etc.

        • Anthrotheist

          To be fair, solving some amount of premature live birth doesn’t create problems of post-natal care and who pays the bills; at worst, it would exacerbate what is already an inhumane economic calculus.

        • Please explain what you mean.

        • Anthrotheist

          Nothing cryptic really; all healthcare in America, including post-natal care, is governed in large part by the economics of insurance-based and often for-profit interest. So post-natal care is already what I call an inhumane economic calculation (i.e., calculus). If or when medical progress increases our ability to support and sustain premature birth (including extraction such as c-section), it may be possible to eliminate the concept of late-term abortion simply because the nearly developed fetus could be separated from the woman and artificially kept viable until it developed to a self-sustaining state. Pofarmer pointed out that someone would have to pay for and take care of these near-viable fetuses, and I argued that is really no different than our current state of draconian healthcare.

        • I see what you mean, and I don’t think I disagree with you on this point. But the caretaker should be decided ahead of time.

        • I can think of one situation where this development would be useful — when the biological mother does not wish to be a caretaker of the fetus and resulting baby but the biological father does. With advances in technology, the fetus could be removed from the woman and placed in an effective artificial womb. Who pays for it, etc? The biological father!

        • The value of the life of a zygote, embryo, or early fetus is not greater than the value of autonomy of the host woman. However, if/when the fetus becomes a person, and it does before birth, its right to life should supercede the right to autonomy of the host woman, with only a few exceptions.

        • Anthrotheist

          If/when the fetus becomes a person, it must necessarily be a metabolically independent organism that no longer needs to supercede any particular person’s autonomy, especially as it pertains to that person’s body. The fetus becoming a person in no way grants it any claim to the woman’s body or freedom; the fetus didn’t choose its circumstances, but once it is a person it is prohibited (as all people are) from forcing any other person into a position of being indentured or enslaved.

        • A1: If/when the fetus becomes a person, it must necessarily be a metabolically independent organism that no longer needs to supercede any particular person’s autonomy, especially as it pertains to that person’s body.

          GW1: I disagree. Whether a fetus is a person or not is contingent on the brain development of the fetus not on its metabolic independence. Persons are defined by consciousness, not digestion.

          A1: The fetus becoming a person in no way grants it any claim to the woman’s body or freedom; the fetus didn’t choose its circumstances, but once it is a person it is prohibited (as all people are) from forcing any other person into a position of being indentured or enslaved.

          GW1: I disagree. When the fetus becomes a person, it has human rights just as other persons do. One of these is the right to life. In a conflict or rights’ situation between two persons, the right to life of one person supercedes the right to bodily autonomy of the other person. In this situation (if there are no other complicating factors) the host woman should be coerced by the state into providing her womb to the fetal person until birth. This would be for a period of 15 weeks at most.

        • Anthrotheist

          “Persons are defined by consciousness, not digestion.”
          So which is a better candidate for personhood, an underdeveloped fetus that has some elementary form of awareness, or a coma patient? Again we run into the problem of ambiguity: “consciousness” is not a hard and fast metric by any means; it isn’t even strictly defined by general understanding. Metabolic independence is quite easily determined and proven, and doesn’t need any careful definition.

          “In a conflict or rights’ situation between two persons, the right to life of one person supercedes the right to bodily autonomy of the other person.”
          I’m going to put this in the “legitimate slipper slope” column. Where does it end? Actual enslavement or indentured servitude under the justification of someone else’s right to life? State coerced donation of blood, plasma, bone marrow, and even vital organs? You state, “This would be for a period of 15 weeks at most.” Is that supposed to be an acceptable term of physical enslavement to another’s needs? And what happens when someone tries to push that coerced bodily service back farther, based criteria that are equally ambiguous to your “consciousness” argument (such as a zygote being “genetically unique”, having the potential to develop according to the “life cycle” of reproduction, or the presence of a spirit or soul)?

          The problem is that you don’t get to define terms for everyone else, and you don’t control how your arguments or ideas will be manipulated after you have presented them for consideration.

        • GW1: “Persons are defined by consciousness, not digestion.”

          A2: So which is a better candidate for personhood, an underdeveloped fetus that has some elementary form of awareness, or a coma patient?

          GW2: They are equally good candidates. But if the patient has been expertly judged to have permanently lost the capacity for consciousness, then the fetus is the better candidate.

          A2: Again we run into the problem of ambiguity: “consciousness” is not a hard and fast metric by any means; it isn’t even strictly defined by general understanding.

          GW2: I disagree. When you are asleep at night and not dreaming you are unconscious, but when you awaken in the morning you are conscious. What’s so hard to understand?

          A2: Metabolic independence is quite easily determined and proven, and doesn’t need any careful definition.

          GW2: I agree, but persons are defined by experience, consciousness, knowledge, thinking, and brain development, not metabolism. Can a person exist temporarily without metabolism? Is a suckling baby metabolically independent?

          GW1: “In a conflict or rights’ situation between two persons, the right to life of one person supercedes the right to bodily autonomy of the other person.”

          A2: I’m going to put this in the “legitimate slipper slope” column. Where does it end?

          GW2: You are making an illegitimate slippery slope argument. Try to focus on whether the specific principle I stated is correct or incorrect. If you think it is incorrect, then explain and defend your position.

          A2: Actual enslavement or indentured servitude under the justification of someone else’s right to life?

          GW2: I don’t think so, but you’d have to give a specific example of what you mean.

          A2: State coerced donation of blood, plasma, bone marrow, and even vital organs?

          GW2: Yes, the principle would allow this in very narrow circumstances, like this one:
          The Parent Organ Donation Scenario:
          A child needs a kidney transplant quickly or it will die. The healthy father of the child has a matching kidney for the child and will be harmed not at all or only a little if he donates one of his kidneys. But the father is reluctant. Should the father be required by ethics and law to donate one of his kidneys to save the life of his own child? Yes, because parents have special duties to protect the lives of their children that others do not have. And the right to life of the child supercedes the right of bodily autonomy of the father under these circumstances.

          A2: You state, “This would be for a period of 15 weeks at most.” Is that supposed to be an acceptable term of physical enslavement to another’s needs?

          GW2: All coercion is not enslavement. There is no enslavement here. Maybe you are using an odd definition of “enslavement.” Please present your definition.

          A2: And what happens when someone tries to push that coerced bodily service back farther, based criteria that are equally ambiguous to your “consciousness” argument (such as a zygote being “genetically unique”, having the potential to develop according to the “life cycle” of reproduction, or the presence of a spirit or soul)?

          GW2: There is no proposal here to push it back further. Evaluate my current proposal, not somebody else’s.

          A2: The problem is that you don’t get to define terms for everyone else, and you don’t control how your arguments or ideas will be manipulated after you have presented them for consideration.

          GW2: You have the same problem and same lack of control, so we are on equal footing in those respects. Let’s try to use reason to decide who has the best proposal.

        • Anthrotheist

          Yeah, I’m going to go ahead and stop here. I have limited interest in pointless navel-gazing about subjects that are genuinely significant to real people. I’ll talk all day about existentialism or epistemology if you like, those subjects are a perfect choice for untethered abstraction. You’re trying to take the real and significant problem of moralizing abortion, and box it into an abstract niche that you are trying to very carefully delineate. Your insistence that I “Try to focus on whether the specific principle I stated is correct or incorrect”, or “give a specific example”, or “Evaluate my current proposal” is nothing more than your attempt to control the boundaries and format of the conversation. It is apparent that your intention is to treat abortion as an abstract concept that can be definitively solved through pure reason. That is a profoundly naive proposal.

        • You are attempting to control the boundaries and format of the conversation, and so I am doing no more and no less that what you are doing. We just disagree on those boundaries and format.

          Abortion is real! But we talk about reality in concepts. Problems are best solved by reason. If you believe that you have a better method, then present it.

          You can stop whenever you wish.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          The healthy father of the child has a matching kidney for the child and will be harmed not at all or only a little if he donates one of his kidneys.

          How do you know that? Can you foretell the future? Is donating a kidney or other organ really such a trivial matter?

          High school principal dies after making a bone marrow donation to save a stranger

          You know as much about medicine as you know about ethics. If you realised how litte you knew, you would be better off.

        • For goodness sakes, it’s a hypothetical scenario! I don’t have to know that the father will not be significantly harmed. I’m not in the scenario. The scenario makes this assumption.

          In a similar real-life situation, the doctors would make that expectation based on their expertise. Otherwise, they would not perform the operation.

        • Value to whom? How much value in an overpopulated world? Value for what? Lots of important questions to address.

      • I certainly disagree. The issue of abortion is solvable. Start with this definition: A human person is a mammalian organism with homo sapiens’ DNA and with the current capacity for consciousness and therefore with the current capacity to know something. The human fetus does not acquire consciousness until about 24 weeks post conception.

        All the fetal hearbeat laws are based on false assumptions.

        • Anthrotheist

          That is your solution, but no single person or group gets to define a society-wide concept like personhood. It comes down to consensus, if the term is to have any meaningful use. So it is not a solution at the scale that it needs to be.

        • It can be and will be a solution if a consensus of experts come to agree with it. If you believe you have a better definition, please present, explain, and defend it.

        • Anthrotheist

          What experts? Biologists? Doctors? Philosophers? Lawyers? Politicians? Clergy?

          What kind of expert do you think would be accepted by even a majority of people as being qualified to concretely define something as significant and subjective as “personhood”?

        • Biologists, cognitive scientists, neuroscientists, physicians, psychologists, and philosophers. Not lawyers, politicians, or clergy, who have no special expertise in this area.

        • Anthrotheist

          To be perfectly honest, I’m a little envious of your level of idealism. There was a time in my life when I was younger that I would have been willing to believe that a panel of experts from the ivory tower of academic intellectualism could ever agree on a definition of something like personhood, or even if they could do so that their decree would mean anything at all to the masses that make up society at large. But I’m not that starry-eyed young man anymore, and I don’t believe for a second that any of that would happen.

        • Don’t give up your idealism. Stick with it!

        • I doubt that would help. They would just reject your definition of “person” or bypass it by using some other term that allows them to imagine a moral equivalence between a newborn and a single fertilized egg cell.

        • Who are “they”? The current pro-life advocates? Yes, most of them will not be persuaded to accept my definition, but some of them will. But more importantly, more than half of current pro-choice advocates, undecided people, and young people just learning about the issues will be persuaded. Gradually, the pro-person position (neither pro-life nor pro-choice position) will come to prevail, I believe. But we shall see.

    • Otto

      I call it planting the flag in the moral high ground…and yeah I agree, once you convince yourself your have it you can then look down on everyone else.

      • Pofarmer

        The problem is, people will die because of it.

        • Otto

          One of the problems…lots of others, but that is a biggie.

          I have had conversations with people (lots Catholic) where when you point that out they say something along the lines of ‘just because…you don’t legalize murder’. Of course it is not murder, but as long as they believe it is there is no debate to be had…how could they possibly be wrong? /s

        • Pofarmer

          This is another reason they oppose pretty much all birth control other thsn condoms. They beleive that the pill, or IUD’s or whatever might cause a fertilized egg not to implant, and that is an abortion. At that point, I don’t know what conversation you have, other than point out the conswquences of no birth control. It seems to me that people can’t grasp that infant mortality in the U.S. used to be as high as 1 in 4 before age 5. Put in context, an egg failing to implant is no big deal.

        • Greg G.

          Of course it is not murder, but as long as they believe it is there is no debate to be had…how could they possibly be wrong? /s

          It has been demonstrated that if a priest gives a person a cracker and the person walks out with the cracker in his or her pocket instead of in his or her stomach, that person will be accused of kidnapping.

        • Sample1

          Been there done that! This was after the magical rite of holy communion so I was technically automatically excommunicated all those wasted years before escaping. I think it’s a good word to use, shows how ridiculous it is, IMO, to others. As if there is some carpet dressed Archbishop somewhere bellowing the words holding a golden staff.

          McLuvin’

          Mike, excommunicated
          Edit done

        • Well, of course they will. But these pro-life advocates believe that they will save the lives of more people than are lost.

        • Pofarmer

          They’re just going to make lot’s of people miserable.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          The “pro-life” advocates believe many things that are not true.

        • Pofarmer

          Ain’t that the truth.

        • The claim that zygotes, embryos, and early fetuses are persons is false, but the claim that more lives of human organisms will be saved by outlawing abortion than by legalizing it is true.

        • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

          the same reasoning would apply to allowing cancer to run riot in human bodies. We all die, one each, but the total mass of human cells would increase.

        • Ignorant Amos

          …but the claim that more lives of human organisms will be saved by outlawing abortion than by legalizing it is true.

          Citation?

          In the meantime, the research points to you talking rubbish.

          https://www.guttmacher.org/news-release/2018/new-report-highlights-worldwide-variations-abortion-incidence-and-safety

        • Rubbish? That’s pretty arrogant of you. Please don’t call hypotheses which differ from your own “rubbish.” Just say “I disagree” or “I think you are mistaken.”

          I read the summary of that report from Guttmacher. Your citation says that abortion rates are slightly higher in the countries with strict laws than in the countries with lenient laws. I don’t know if the difference is statistically significant, but I doubt it. Also, we are given no information about enforcement. I would predict that where there is both strict laws and strict enforcement, the rate of abortions would be lower. Do you have any evidence to the contrary?

        • Ignorant Amos

          Rubbish? That’s pretty arrogant of you.

          Not a bit of it.

          Please don’t call hypotheses which differ from your own “rubbish.”

          A claim made without support is conjecture…an assertion…not an hypothesis…so until it’s more than that, rubbish will do fine.

          Just say “I disagree” or “I think you are mistaken.”

          I might, if you support your claim…until such time it’s just rubbish. But am prepared to be proven in error.

          I read the summary of that report from Guttmacher. Your citation says that abortion rates are slightly higher in the countries with strict laws than in the countries with lenient laws. I don’t know if the difference is statistically significant, but I doubt it. Also, we are given no information about enforcement. I would predict that where there is both strict laws and strict enforcement, the rate of abortions would be lower.

          I don’t really care what you “predict”, I’m more concerned about what you can demonstrate…which so far has been zilch.

          You argument here is that where there is better law enforcement, there are less abortions? Really? More rubbish?

          http://news.trust.org/item/20160418091818-qx2zt/

          Do you have any evidence to the contrary?

          The report you didn’t read that I linked to for starters.

          You seem to be struggling with the concept under discussion. The rate of abortions doesn’t change significantly whether it is illegal, restricted, or readily available. It is the risk to life via illegal terminations where women are forced to seek backstreet terminations. So the net human death is increased by the addition of the mothers that don’t make it. Law enforcement won’t curtail the actions of desperate women.

          A new report on women’s access to abortion around the world by United States think tank the Guttmacher Institute estimates that up to 31,000 women die every year as a result of botched abortions and around seven million are injured or made ill.

          Complications include incomplete abortion, when part of the fetal tissue is left in the uterus; infection; heavy bleeding; and damage to the genital tract and internal organs when a sharp object such as a stick, glass or knitting needle is inserted.

          Abortion rates are similar in countries where it is broadly legal and where it is highly restrictive – 34 abortions take place for every 1,000 women in countries where it is not restricted and 37 per 1,000 where it is legal.

          The report says: “Legal restrictions do not eliminate abortion. Rather they increase the likelihood that abortions will be done unsafely, as they compel women to seek clandestine procedures.”

          https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/03/20/millions-women-risk-backstreet-abortions/

          So with regards to your assertion…

          …but the claim that more lives of human organisms will be saved by outlawing abortion than by legalizing it is true.

          The research shows that there is little difference in numbers where abortion is legal vis a vis illegal, but there are more lives of human organisms lost where it is illegal.

          The report estimates that around 55.9m abortions take place every year, with the majority of these – 49.3m – taking place in developing countries, compared to 6.6m in developed countries.

          Because in the developed world, all the stuff that is being put forward by the pro-choice folk here has demonstrated successful.

          Another article addressing the issue…

          https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/mar/24/want-to-lower-the-abortion-rate-support-pro-choice-policies

        • Pofarmer

          What the hell would “Strict enforcement” of abortion laws even look like?

          Fer fucks sake.

        • P: Fer fucks sake.

          GW: Your hostile remarks are not helpful. Please keep them to yourself.

          P: What the hell would “Strict enforcement” of abortion laws even look like?

          GW: Strict Enforcement of a Law Against Abortion:
          1. Statement of a specific penalty for violation in the law.
          2. Widespread education (including warnings) about the law, especially to women, doctors who might perform abortions, and law enforcement officers.
          3. Reliable and competent investigation of reports, complaints, or accusations that a violation has occurred.
          4. Reliable prosecution, rendering of due process, and findings of guilt where there is sufficient evidence of violation.
          5. Reliable and fair implementation of the penalty stated in the law.
          6. A sufficient penalty would probably be a year and a day in jail for women and doctors who violate the law.

        • Pofarmer

          I haven’t begun to be hostile. Quit the tone trolling.

        • You are failing to see your own hostility. I am not tone trolling. Instead, I am pointing out hostile or uncivil remarks.

        • Susan

          You are failing to see your own hostility.

          That hostility might be because you are advocating for interfering in the medical decisions of women and their families.

          Because of things you say “should” be, without supporting your “should”.

          And that when evidence is raised that goes against even the effeciveness of your position, you ignore it/are suspicious about it because it’s “counter-intuitive”.

          When the implications of forcing parents to donate kidneys and/or their bodies for pregnancy and childbirth are brought up, you don’t address those implications.

          This is not a soapbox for Gary’s “shoulds”.

          It’s a place where discussion is welcome but unsupported proclamations are eventually met with healthy and appropriate hostility.

          As Po says, quit the tone trolling.

          What you’re suggesting is appalling, unsupported, and you haven’t begun to address the implications.

          Your position is hostile to human rights.

        • GW1: You are failing to see your own hostility.

          S2: That hostility might be because you are advocating for interfering in the medical decisions of women and their families.

          GW2: At least you saw the hostility there, while Pofarmer apparently did not. Expressing hostility in uncivil remarks in a debate is unethical.

          S2: Because of things you say “should” be, without supporting your “should”.

          GW2: I routinely support all my “should” statements, but if you think I missed one, then point it out and we can discuss it. Do you support all your “should” statements? Do you believe that people should make uncivil remarks on forums like this? If so, please support that claim.

          S2: And that when evidence is raised that goes against even the effeciveness of your position, you ignore it/are suspicious about it because it’s “counter-intuitive”.

          GW2: No, I don’t ignore it. I don’t know how you got that idea. If somebody is behaving civilly in a discussion, I read every remark they make and respond to most of them. That is not ignoring. Yes, I am suspicious or skeptical about some claims made by some discussants, and there is nothing wrong with that. I usually express my skepticism.

          S2: When the implications of forcing parents to donate kidneys and/or their bodies for pregnancy and childbirth are brought up, you don’t address those implications.

          GW2: That is just false. It you want me to address a new implication you’ve thought of, just bring it up now.

          S2: This is not a soapbox for Gary’s “shoulds”.

          GW2: I disagree. This is a soapbox for everyones’ “shoulds.” If I claim that everyone on a forum like this should speak civilly and you disagree, then you are implying an alternative “should.”

          S2: It’s a place where discussion is welcome but unsupported proclamations are eventually met with healthy and appropriate hostility.

          GW2: I support my proclamations. If you feel hostility towards me for anything I say on this forum, you have at least four good options: 1) Hold the hostility, but speak civilly. 2) Say something like “I feel angry about your claims.” 3) Reduce your hostility by exercise, meditation, medication, relaxation, talking with friends, seeing a therapist, etc. or 4) Just quit the discussion. However, making uncivil remarks is unethical.

          S2: As Po says, quit the tone trolling.

          GW2: I don’t engage in tone trolling per se. That is a different behavior from what I do. But I do police uncivil remarks. Please quit telling me to quit policing uncivil remarks. I will continue doing it, where I think it is appropriate.

          S2: What you’re suggesting is appalling, unsupported, and you haven’t begun to address the implications.

          GW2: That’s just your opinion, and I disagree with it. Please present some good evidence, reasons, and/or arguments to support your opinion. So far, you haven’t.

          S2: Your position is hostile to human rights.

          GW2: I disagree. My position is supportive of human rights. Your position does not take into account conflicts in rights and interests, and your position is hostile towards some rights of some persons. Also, you unethically support others who speak uncivilly, when you should be calling them out.

        • Pofarmer

          : I don’t engage in tone trolling per se. That is a different behavior
          from what I do. But I do police uncivil remarks. Please quit telling
          me to quit policing uncivil remarks. I will continue doing it, where I
          think it is appropriate.

          Gary, with all due respect. Fuck you. All right? This ain’t your blog and it ain’t your place. You’re passive/aggressive bullshit gets old, mkay?

        • There you go again — making two more uncivil remarks. You know what they are and you love expressing your hostility by making them. Your defense of incivility gets really old.

          An uncivil remark on the internet is the symbolic equivalent of a punch in the nose in a face-to-face encounter. I’m not going to put up with your behavior any longer. You’ve had several opportunities to reform yourself and you didn’t take advantage of them.

          Because you continue to make personal attacks against me and/or others, to make flawed excuses for your misbehavior, to fail to take responsibility for your misconduct, and/or to enable others to do the same, I’m not going to waste my time with you any longer. In the future I will not read, think about, or respond to your posts. I will devote my time to others who are both able and willing to have a civil and rational discussion of controversial subjects. You are blacklisted and blocked.

        • Pofarmer

          I may have to take back my comment about calling you stupid.

        • Greg G.

          Gary, you are a tone troll. It is tone trolling when anybody else does it and it is tone trolling when you do it. Calling it something else does not make it not tone trolling.

        • Greg, I disagree. I don’t think I’m a tone troll even though you think I am.

          But for the third time you have failed to define “tone trolling.”

          Also, do you believe a person who tone trolls one time is thereby a “tone troll” or must it be a habitual thing?

        • Greg G.

          Definition provided here: http://disq.us/p/20zrmai

          Every time you tone troll, you are a tone troll. If you persistently tone troll, you get the label of “tone troll”. You tone troll persistently.

        • GG2: Definition provided here: http://disq.us/p/20zrmai

          GW2: Why are you providing another definition? Were you not satisfied with the one you already presented from Wikipedia? Your first definition didn’t fit my behavior so you looked for another one? That behavior reminds me of my Christian friend who carries with him a dozen different versions of the Bible.

          GG2: Every time you tone troll, you are a tone troll. If you persistently tone troll, you get the label of “tone troll”. You tone troll persistently.

          GW2: I disagree with your first claim here. You are using a verb which identifies a behavior as a noun to classify a person, and that is a mistake. Here is an analogy for you: Just because you told a lie about me when you said “you admitted to tone trolling,” that doesn’t mean you are a liar. A liar is a person who persistently, frequently, or habitually lies. Donald Trump is a good example of a liar. I don’t regard you as a liar even though you lied once in the current discussion.

          GW2: I also disagree with your third claim here. I don’t believe I have tone trolled even once in this discussion, especially with you. You’ve just made a single accusation of that, and I showed that it was mistaken.

        • Kodie

          Gary, do you think you’re perfect and right about everything? Your refusal to listen to anyone if they say things how you don’t prefer they say them makes you an asshole I mean tone troll, but tone trolls are assholes. Everything out of your keyboard indicates you think you have superiority over everyone else, no consideration for anyone else, and that you don’t think you are hostile when you are. You disagree with any criticism against you or your argument, without thinking. You are too in love with yourself to be civil to, so don’t mind if everyone thinks you’re an asshole, because you just ar.

        • Susan

          At least you saw the hostility there, while Pofarmer apparently did not.

          I’m sure he was well aware of the hostility.

          You’ve made stupid, scary and unsupported claims. That merits a “what the hell” and even a “Fer fucks sake”.

          Your answer was an arbitrary amount of prison time. Without support. Just Gary’s edict.

          I routinely support all of my “should” statements

          No, you don’t. Give me one example.

          All you’ve done is say how you think things “should” be without addressing the ramifications and when someone reacts negatively, you accuse them of “ad hominem” (another claim you’ve made that you haven’t supported). IA asked you to look up the term and support your accusation but you didn’t do so.

          No, I don’t ignore it. I don’t know how you got that idea.

          When it was pointed out that where abortions are legal, there are fewer abortions, you decided to reject the evidence, without replacing it with evidence of your own, because you found it “counter-intuitive”. (i.e. the evidence didn’t support your claim)

          That’s just one example. There are many. But one, on this subject, is all that I need to support what I said.

          I disagree. My position is supportive of human rights.

          No, it’s not. You’ve proclaimed “consciousness” at 24 weeks, claimed that that is sufficient to violate an obviouslyconscious person’s bodily rights to bodily automony, because Gary says so, without explaining why.

          You attempted to claim that it is equal to a biological father being forced by law to donate a kidney, pretending that it’s no big deal to donate a kidney, like you’re pretending it’s no big deal to gestate a human who lives off of your body and deliver it, is no big deal.

          All you’ve given us is “because Gary says so”.

          Your position does not take into account conflicts in rights and interests

          It very clearly does. You just arbitrarily proclaim the rights and interests of a fully conscious being (and often their families who depend on them) are supposed to be overridden, for no other reason than because Gary says so.

          Also, you unethically support others who speak uncivilly

          It’s perfectly civil to respond with hostility to someone who insists that the bodily autonomy of a fellow civilian be withdrawn, based on your say-so, when the only support you’ve provided for doing so is you saying “it should”.

          What isn’t “civil” are your unsupported ideas.

          Pofarmer was on the mark with his comment.

          If all you are going to provide is your untethered and disturbing manifesto, then expect slightly hostile responses inside a good question. Which was (with the phrases you object to, removed)

          What would strict enforcement of abortion laws look like?

          And you answered with “what Gary says they should look like without even showing that they should be laws”.

          They are Draconian, underdeveloped, and the evidence (which you reject, while providing none of your own) says they won’t work.

          So, fuck ’em.

        • GW2: At least you saw the hostility there, while Pofarmer apparently did not.

          S3: I’m sure he was well aware of the hostility.

          GW3: The evidence doesn’t bear that out, so I am skeptical of your certainty.

          S3: You’ve made stupid, scary and unsupported claims. That merits a “what the hell” and even a “Fer fucks sake”.

          GW3: None of my claims are stupid or unsupported. They are all rational and supported. You might be scared if my proposals were fully implemented, but that doesn’t mean they are incorrect. Nothing I have said warrants an uncivil remark by you o.

          S3: Your answer was an arbitrary amount of prison time. Without support. Just Gary’s edict.

          GW3: No, it was not arbitrary at all. It was very rational. The time needs to be longer then nine months, i.e. the duration of a pregnancy. The woman needs to think “Going to prison for a year for having an unethical abortion would be worse than enduring a pregnancy for nine months.” It needs to be long enough to be a deterrent. I talked to a retired judge who said that any sentence over a year indicates a felony conviction, and felony convictions are considered more serious than misdemeanor convictions. Thus, you can see that my choice of the prison time was not arbitrary at all. But if you think you have a better idea for that length of time, please present it and we can discuss it.

          GW2: I routinely support all of my “should” statements

          S3: No, you don’t. Give me one example.

          GW3: Yes, I do. Give me an example of one which you believe I did not support. If I mistakenly overlooked supporting a “should” statement, I’ll support it now.

          S3: All you’ve done is say how you think things “should” be without addressing the ramifications and when someone reacts negatively, you accuse them of “ad hominem” (another claim you’ve made that you haven’t supported). IA asked you to look up the term and support your accusation but you didn’t do so.

          GW3: Give me an example of a “ramification” which you believe I should address. Be specific. An ad hominem attack is only one type of uncivil remark. People can disagree with me without making uncivil remarks, but when they make these remarks I am likely to point them out, and if they persistently make them I am likely to cut off communication with them. That is good practice.

          GW2: No, I don’t ignore it. I don’t know how you got that idea.

          S3: When it was pointed out that where abortions are legal, there are fewer abortions, you decided to reject the evidence, without replacing it with evidence of your own, because you found it “counter-intuitive”. (i.e. the evidence didn’t support your claim)

          GW3: That is an incorrect or incomplete account of what happened in the discussion. I think you had better read the most recent exchange on that point. You are behind.

          S3: That’s just one example. There are many. But one, on this subject, is all that I need to support what I said.

          GW3: Well, the one example you presented is not valid since you misconstrued what happened. You are too far behind the discussion.

          GW2: I disagree. My position is supportive of human rights.

          S3: No, it’s not. You’ve proclaimed “consciousness” at 24 weeks, claimed that that is sufficient to violate an obviouslyconscious person’s bodily rights to bodily automony, because Gary says so, without explaining why.

          GW3: Yes, it is, Susan! I fully explained why in the article I wrote for Skeptic magazine. Have you read it? After you read it, if you have questions or feedback, just present them to me. Here is the citation and link:
          Whittenberger, Gary. “Personhood and Abortion Rights: How Science Might Inform this Contentious Issue.” Skeptic. Vol. 23, No. 4, Pg. 34-39. And eSkeptic at

          S3: You attempted to claim that it is equal to a biolog ical father being forced by law to donate a kidney, pretending that it’s no big deal to donate a kidney, like you’re pretending it’s no big deal to gestate a human who lives off of your body and deliver it, is no big deal.

          GW3: This is a straw man argument since I never said it was “no big deal” or even implied it.

          GW2: Your position does not take into account conflicts in rights and interests

          S3: It very clearly does. You just arbitrarily proclaim the rights and interests of a fully conscious being (and often their families who depend on them) are supposed to be overridden, for no other reason than because Gary says so.

          GW3: You just aren’t keeping up with the discussion. I gave good reasons why in some cases the right to bodily autonomy of one person should be superceded by some other person’s right. The reasons involve evaluation of harm. You are talking in generalities rather than about a specific situation. Bring up a specific example and we can discuss it.

          GW2: Also, you unethically support others who speak uncivilly

          S3: It’s perfectly civil to respond with hostility to someone who insists that the bodily autonomy of a fellow civilian be withdrawn, based on your say-so, when the only support you’ve provided for doing so is you saying “it should”.

          GW3: It is ethically wrong to express hostility through an uncivil remark in a discussion/debate forum, regardless of how angry you are or regardless of your disagreement with a point.

          S3: What isn’t “civil” are your unsupported ideas.

          GW3: Just because you disagree with an idea doesn’t make the idea uncivil. I’m talking about specific uncivil remarks in a discussion, not ideas you don’t agree with or don’t like.

          S3: Pofarmer was on the mark with his comment.

          GW3: I disagree. Pofarmer was out of line with his uncivil comment.

          S3: If all you are going to provide is your untethered and disturbing manifesto, then expect slightly hostile responses inside a good question. Which was (with the phrases you object to, removed)

          GW3: I have no manifesto. My proposals are tethered to reason. I am sorry you are disturbed by my ideas. I expect people to express their disagreement without uncivil remarks. If they persistently don’t, then I usually cut off communication with them.

          S3: “What would strict enforcement of abortion laws look like?”
          And you answered with “what Gary says they should look like without even showing that they should be laws”.

          GW3: I answered that question very explicitly.

          S3: They are Draconian, underdeveloped, and the evidence (which you reject, while providing none of your own) says they won’t work.

          GW3: You say they are Draconian; I say they are rational; we disagree. You say they are underdeveloped; I say they are well developed; we disagree. On the specific Guttmacher evidence which Ignorant Amos presented, you are just way behind in the discussion.

          S3: So, fuck ’em.

          GW3: Those are your angry words, not mine. Donald Trump’s crass language is being emulated throughout the country, which is a shame.

        • Ignorant Amos

          GW3: None of my claims are stupid or unsupported.

          Yes and no.

          They are all rational and supported.

          This is rubbish.

          You might be scared if my proposals were fully implemented, but that doesn’t mean they are incorrect.

          Whaaaa?

          Nothing I have said warrants an uncivil remark by you o.

          It does when you repeat your rubbish without any effort to support it with substance, while hand-waving away the evidence supplied to you by others to the contrary, just because you feel it to be counter intuitive. That is being irrational. Stop being a dick and folk here will stop labeling ya one. Simples.

        • Greg G.

          I am not tone trolling. Instead, I am pointing out hostile or uncivil remarks.

          Those two statements are contradictory.

        • Rationally demonstrate a contradiction, if you can.

        • Greg G.

          In the first sentence, you claimed to not be tone trolling. In the second sentence, you said you were tone trolling.

          You used the term in one sentence and a good definition of the term in the second.

        • GG: In the first sentence, you claimed to not be tone trolling. In the second sentence, you said you were tone trolling.

          GW: You are correct on the first claim and incorrect on the second claim. I never said I was tone trolling. If you think I did, then provide the exact quote.

          GG: You used the term in one sentence and a good definition of the term in the second.

          GW: Again, you are correct on the first claim and incorrect on the second one. I never presented a definition of “tone trolling” in this entire discussion.

          GW: Greg, please don’t make false claims, as you have done here. Let’s hear your own definition of “tone trolling.”

        • Greg G.

          I never said I was tone trolling.

          You said, “I am pointing out hostile or uncivil remarks.” That is tone trolling.

        • But Greg, you said “In the second sentence, you said you were tone trolling.” That is false. And so, you have failed to show any contradiction.

          Also, you did not present your definition of “tone trolling.” I’m still waiting on that.

        • Max Doubt

          “I am not tone trolling. Instead, I am pointing out hostile or uncivil remarks.”

          Let’s look back a bit, shall we?

          Please don’t call hypotheses which differ from your own “rubbish.” Just say “I disagree” or “I think you are mistaken.”

          Yep, you’re tone trolling, ya ignorant uncivil dick.

        • Ignorant Amos

          He is so far up his own arse he doesn’t even recognize he is being a tone troll with all his threats to terminate the discussion. Who actually gives a fuck, he doesn’t know to just stop responding if he is such a snowflake regarding the vocabulary of his interlocutor.

          Passive aggressive prick.

          https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/communication-success/201401/how-spot-and-deal-passive-aggressive-people

        • Greg G.

          My definition is the definition that is generally used by everybody except the clueless tone trolls themselves.

          Tone policing (also tone trolling, tone argument and tone fallacy) is an ad hominem and antidebate appeal based on genetic fallacy. It attempts to detract from the validity of a statement by attacking the tone in which it was presented rather than the message itself.
          Tone policing – Wikipedia
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tone_policing

          When you said, “I am pointing out hostile or uncivil remarks,” you admitted to tone trolling as you were attacking the tone in which it was presented. You denied tone trolling in the previous sentence.

          You have threatened Ignorant Amos while complaining of his tone. You blacklisted and blocked Pofarmer just today because of his tone, which is an antidebate appeal based on genetic fallacy.

          You are a tone troll.

        • GG: My definition is the definition that is generally used by everybody except the clueless tone trolls themselves.

          GW: It’s about time you presented your definition!

          GG: “Tone policing (also tone trolling, tone argument and tone fallacy) is an ad hominem and antidebate appeal based on genetic fallacy. It attempts to detract from the validity of a statement by attacking the tone in which it was presented rather than the message itself.
          Tone policing – Wikipedia
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wi

          GW: That’s a pretty poor definition, but let’s go with it for now. Wikipedia is usually better than that.

          GG: When you said, “I am pointing out hostile or uncivil remarks,” you admitted to tone trolling as you were attacking the tone in which it was presented. You denied tone trolling in the previous sentence.

          GW: I disagree. First, I never admitted tone trolling. You just accused me of it. Secondly, I am not attacking tone. A specific hostile or uncivil remark is not a tone. Thirdly, when I identify these kinds of remarks, I am not “detracting from the validity of a statement.” I engage directly with the validity of statements and show how claims of others are mistaken. I add criticisms of hostile and uncivil remarks when I detect them, most of the time. There is nothing wrong with that. In fact, you should be doing the same.

          GG: You have threatened Ignorant Amos while complaining of his tone.

          GW: Where is your evidence? Please present quotes of mine which you believe illustrate your point here.

          GG: You blacklisted and blocked Pofarmer just today because of his tone, which is an antidebate appeal based on genetic fallacy.

          GW: That is half-correct. I blacklisted and blocked Pofarmer today because he/she has persistently made hostile or uncivil remarks. There was no antidebate appeal. In fact I was fully involved in the debate until he/she made those remarks. Look at his/her last uncivil remark and you will see that he/she was pleased with it. This shows a lack of motivation to behave civilly. I am very pleased that I don’t have to read his/her mean remarks any longer.

          GG: You are a tone troll.

          GW: I disagree with your conclusion and believe you are completely mistaken here. My identifications and criticisms of hostile and uncivil remarks do not meet the definition of tone trolling which you presented. In fact, you are enabling those who make such remarks. I don’t know why you’d do this.

        • Greg G.

          Geez, Gary. The definition has been around for some time. You could have looked it up yourself. It is the definition of tone trolling that everybody in the world uses, except you. General usage versus you pet definition. You lose.

          How is blocking and blacklisting somebody not an antidebate tactic? How is it not tone trolling when it was because you didn’t like his tone?

          Tone trolling with Ignorant Amos examples:
          GW thanking IA for being civil
          http://disq.us/p/20yu1r8
          http://disq.us/p/20ywti4

          Here is him responding after you thanked him for being civil because you tone trolled him previously.
          http://disq.us/p/20yw318

          http://disq.us/p/20yt9zl
          GW: Technical foul! Here you are out of line. Present your claims without mean words and I’ll be happy to discuss your claims with you.
          (For typing “Oh ffs…”)

          http://disq.us/p/20y88t0
          GW: Rubbish? That’s pretty arrogant of you. Please don’t call hypotheses which differ from your own “rubbish.” Just say “I disagree” or “I think you are mistaken.”

          http://disq.us/p/20yw318
          Ignorant Amos: I don’t know why you are so thin skinned, but anyway…I’ll endeavor to curb my way when interacting with you. Though a can’t promise exasperation won’t get the better of me.

          Followed by http://disq.us/p/20ywti4
          GW2: I don’t know why you are so quick to make uncivil remarks, but anyway I appreciate your attempt to curb them. I have confidence in your ability to control your exasperation.

          Gary, you are the epitome of tone trolls. Are you really so self-unaware?

        • Pofarmer

          Are you really so self un-aware.

          I’m assuming that’s rhetorical.

        • Ignorant Amos

          He really shouldn’t be posting on the internet. His subjective view of civility is all that seems to matter. He’s just a big snowflake.

        • Pofarmer

          His subjective view of everything is all that seems to matter.

        • GG5: Geez, Gary. The definition has been around for some time. You could have looked it up yourself.

          GW5: Geez, Greg, you could have given the definition you use when I first asked you for it. You wasted your time looking up additional definitions since I said we would go with the Wikipedia one for now. I’m not going to waste my time looking at more of them.

          GG5: It is the definition of tone trolling that everybody in the world uses, except you. General usage versus you pet definition. You lose.

          GW5: I don’t regularly use the term. I don’t think I have ever introduced it in a discussion or accused somebody of tone trolling. I think it is a weak concept. Do you view our discussions in terms of winning and losing? If so, I am disappointed in your perspective.

          GG5: How is blocking and blacklisting somebody not an antidebate tactic? How is it not tone trolling when it was because you didn’t like his tone?

          GW5: It doesn’t meet the definition of tone trolling which you presented. If persons persistently make uncivil remarks, that goes against Patheos policy and I either cut off communication with that person or I report them to the moderator. There’s nothing wrong with doing either. Why should I waste my time in discussions with those who make mean, hostile, nasty, hateful, or uncivil remarks when I can have valuable discussions with others who don’t do that?

        • Greg G.

          GW5: I don’t regularly use the term.

          Why would you? You are a tone troll.

          I don’t necessarily read your entire post when you go off the rails at the beginning. Sometimes I will see the last thing at the bottom when I am responding and respond to that. I don’t think I saw your request for a definition but it would have been easy for you to get one that worked for me. I gave you a couple more because they say the same thing.

          If persons persistently make uncivil remarks, that goes against Patheos policy and I either cut off communication with that person or I report them to the moderator.

          THAT IS TONE TROLLING by the definitions I gave you and by any definition. Reporting someone takes it to the next level. Cutting off communications is one of the examples given in one source I quoted to you.

          Why should I waste my time in discussions with those who make mean, hostile, nasty, hateful, or uncivil remarks when I can have valuable discussions with others who don’t do that?

          What matters is their argument. How they say it or how they speak to you is irrelevant if they are not threatening you. Sticks and stones… you know the rest.

        • GW5: I don’t regularly use the term.

          GG6: Why would you? You are a tone troll.

          GW6: I wouldn’t use the term because I think the concept is weak and instead I focus on uncivil remarks. Your latter claim is unfounded and false, as I have shown.

          GG6: I don’t necessarily read your entire post when you go off the rails at the beginning. Sometimes I will see the last thing at the bottom when I am responding and respond to that. I don’t think I saw your request for a definition but it would have been easy for you to get one that worked for me. I gave you a couple more because they say the same thing.

          GW6: I reply in sequence. I asked you for a definition two or three times.

          GW5: If persons persistently make uncivil remarks, that goes against Patheos policy and I either cut off communication with that person or I report them to the moderator.

          GG6: THAT IS TONE TROLLING by the definitions I gave you and by any definition.

          GW6: I disagree. Your claim here is false and unfounded, as I have already shown.

          GG6: Reporting someone takes it to the next level. Cutting off communications is one of the examples given in one source I quoted to you.

          GW6: I don’t do either of these if a person makes one or two uncivil remarks. I give them an opportunity to retract, apology, or reform. But if they continue, then I usually cut off communication. For very egregious uncivil remarks, I sometimes report them to the moderator. Both of these responses are appropriate.

          GW5: Why should I waste my time in discussions with those who make mean, hostile, nasty, hateful, or uncivil remarks when I can have valuable discussions with others who don’t do that?

          GG6: What matters is their argument. How they say it or how they speak to you is irrelevant if they are not threatening you. Sticks and stones… you know the rest.

          GW6: I disagree. Their argument AND their civility-incivility both matter. Threatening is one example of an egregious uncivil remark. An uncivil remark in an on-line discussion is the symbolic equivalent to a punch in the face in a personal encounter. It is aggression. It impairs the discussion.

          GW6: So many people now on the internet want to emulate Donald Trump making uncivil remarks. He is such a bad model. It is really disgusting and saddening to see this. Moderators usually don’t have the time to police incivility, and so we participants should pick up the slack. I will do my share. Will you?

        • Greg G.

          instead I focus on uncivil remarks

          It doesn’t matter which tone you focus on, it is tone trolling.

          It doesn’t matter which excuses you give for your behavior, it is tone trolling.

        • I disagree. Both your claims here are unfounded and false, as I have already shown.

          Now, would like to get back to the abortion issue or are you finished with that topic?

        • Greg G.

          Gary, your denials sound like when a person says, “I’m not a racist but…” then they say something racist. You say, “I am not a tone troll, I just do…” then you add something tone trolls do.

          Now, would like to get back to the abortion issue or are you finished with that topic?

          I think we are finished with that. Your justifications are worse than your conclusions.

        • GG8: Gary, your denials sound like when a person says, “I’m not a racist but…” then they say something racist. You say, “I am not a tone troll, I just do…” then you add something tone trolls do.

          GW8: Well, we just disagree on your claim. You believe I engage in tone trolling, and I believe I don’t.

          GW7: Now, would like to get back to the abortion issue or are you finished with that topic?

          GG8: I think we are finished with that. Your justifications are worse than your conclusions.

          GW8: I disagree. My conclusions and justifications are very good. Your objections and defenses are very poor. We just disagree.

        • Don’t you have better things to do than scold people for their rude language? This is the internet, you know–it’s rude.

          My suggestion: make your argument simply and clearly and avoid the repetative, repetative, repetative nagging. If one commenter pisses you off too much, just ignore them.

          Half of your comments are scolding (or responding to responses to your scolding), and the net rudeness would go down if you’d stop nagging about rudeness.

        • BS1: Don’t you have better things to do than scold people for their rude language? This is the internet, you know–it’s rude.

          GW1: I’d rather be debating issues like abortion and religion, but when somebody makes an uncivil remark in the midst of the discussion, I am likely to point it out. They are using emotion rather than reason to try to make their point. The internet is not fixed in rudeness or incivility. We can help to change it. Bystander apathy enables incivility.

          BS1: My suggestion: make your argument simply and clearly and avoid the repetative, repetative, repetative nagging. If one commenter pisses you off too much, just ignore them.

          GW1: I already make my arguments simply and clearly. I nag when somebody engages in repeated uncivil remarks. Your ignoring of uncivil remarks is actually enabling them. We don’t agree on strategies of response to incivility. I think we discussed this before.

          BS1: Half of your comments are scolding (or responding to responses to your scolding), and the net rudeness would go down if you’d stop nagging about rudeness.

          GW1: Bob, your first claim here is not even close to being true. Almost all my comments address the content of the current essay. A small percentage of my comments criticize uncivil remarks. I quickly attack uncivil remarks; I don’t initiate them. The net rudeness would go down if you, as the moderator, used progressive discipline in response to rudeness, incivility, and bullying.

          GW1: Another thing you could do to reduce this kind of behavior is to require that participants use their correct full names. Much psychological research shows that anonymity facilitates aggression.

          GW1: Here is a new book which I recommend to you: Love Your Enemies: How Decent People Can Save America from the Culture of Contempt, Hardcover – March 12, 2019, by Arthur C. Brooks

        • when somebody makes an uncivil remark in the midst of the discussion, I am likely to point it out.

          Yes, you are. You think it’s inappropriate? Then be the big man and let it go. How you think 20 emails of back and forths is useful, I can’t imagine.

          We can help to change it. Bystander apathy enables incivility.

          This isn’t a hard concept: your approach makes it worse.

          GW1: Another thing you could do to reduce this kind of behavior is to require that participants use their correct full names.

          Thanks. Not how I roll.

        • Well, Bob, we just have very different ideas about how a discussion should be managed by a moderator. Agree to disagree.

        • Kodie

          Wow, how arrogant. It’s Bob’s blog, and if he doesn’t run it the way you like, you know what you can do. and what else you can do.

        • Kodie

          They are using emotion rather than reason to try to make their point.

          YOU are using your emotions to go away from the topic (which is trolling) to nag (harass, threaten) people about how they shall talk to you if they want you to talk to them, which is selfish and hostile in itself, and does nothing to make the internet seem more civil. Nobody really wants to listen to anything you have to say, after you’ve said it once. You’re a dumb block of cement who repeats himself and thinks he’s always right about everything. I think you are trolling by refusing to understand how your behavior fits the definition of tone troll. You know exactly how big an asshole you are. How could you not? You’d be really ignorant to not know.

        • Greg G.

          Two more defintions from relevant online sources:

          https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Tone_argument
          Tone argument
          The tone argument (also tone policing) is a logical fallacy that occurs when an argument is dismissed or accepted on its presentation: typically perceived crassness, hysteria or anger. Tone arguments are generally used by tone trolls (esp. concern trolls) as a method of positioning oneself as a Very Serious Person.

          ++++++++++++++++++++++++++
          ++++++++++++++++++++++++++
          ++++++++++++++++++++++++++

          https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Tone%20Troll
          Tone Troll
          A Tone Troll is a form of internet troll focusing on the tone of arguments. A Tone Troll will typically express great consternation and offense at the style of an argument, as a way of distracting from the actual content.

          This is done deliberately as a way to derailarguments; the Tone Troll prefers to muddy the issue by changing the subject diverts attention away from the merit of the argument itself and unto the specific words being used to advance it.
          Commenter: I think killing people because they’re gay is wrong, goddammit.

          Tone Troll: How dare you use a dirty word like that! Have you no shame? I demand an apology.

          Commenter: Don’t you think the fact that people are being killed is slightly more important than whether I said a naughty word?

          Tone Troll: Why should I listen to anything you say when you’re using such filthy language?

          Commenter: Okay, sorry, but what about my argument?

          Tone Troll: I’m entirely too upset to continue

          ++++++++++++++++++++++++++
          ++++++++++++++++++++++++++
          ++++++++++++++++++++++++++

          The first step is to admit you have a problem.

        • You first picked the Wikipedia definition and I went with it. I showed that it did not apply to my behavior. Case closed. I have no need or desire to look at more definitions. You remind me of my Christian friend who carries around a dozen versions of the Bible just in case one English translation of a specific verse doesn’t work out for him

        • Greg G.

          I gave you three definitions that used different words to make the same point. You seem to think that since you don’t use the exact words in any of them, that you are not doing what they describe.

        • I used the definition from Wikipedia which you cited. I did a conceptual analysis. I showed that most of the concepts embedded in your definition did not apply to what I do. I don’t engage in tone trolling, IMO. But I certainly engage in policing of uncivil remarks. I think that is my duty.

        • Greg G.

          But I certainly engage in policing of uncivil remarks. I think that is my duty.

          The hallmark of a self-unaware tone troll.

        • i disagree with your description of me. Your claim is unfounded and false, as I have shown.

          Now, would you like to get back to the abortion issue or are you finished with that?

        • Greg G.

          i disagree with your description of me. Your claim is unfounded and false, as I have shown.

          When you try to distinguish yourself from tone trolls, your example is something tone trolls do. You keep proving you are a tone troll to everybody.

        • Sorry, but I already demonstrated that your claim is unfounded and false. We just disagree.

        • Ignorant Amos

          The Wikipedia definition fits perfectly.

          GW: I disagree. First, I never admitted tone trolling.

          Irrelevant. Why would you admit to it. It’s not something to boast about. You are a tone troll by your actions.

          You just accused me of it.

          Aye, funny thing that. Imagine all these folk here seeing you as tone trolling and all being wrong…and just you, the tone troll, thinking you are not trolling. Silly ain’t it, NOT!

          Secondly, I am not attacking tone. A specific hostile or uncivil remark is not a tone.

          Oh fer fucks sake. Are you really going to act so dumb? Try using a dictionary, there’s a good child.

          Thirdly, when I identify these kinds of remarks, I am not “detracting from the validity of a statement.”

          Yes…that’s exactly what you are doing. You repeatedly close down the conversation and refuse to address the relevant aspects of the comment. I think you use it as an excuse, because you’ve got bugger all else.

          I engage directly with the validity of statements and show how claims of others are mistaken. I add criticisms of hostile and uncivil remarks when I detect them, most of the time.

          Liar..as demonstrated earlier.

          There is nothing wrong with that.

          But you don’t practice it, so pah!

          In fact, you should be doing the same.

          The rest of us don’t close down the debate because of the tone of the conversation…that’s you Gary…ya really can’t be this asinine with just the one head.

        • Greg G.

          When Gary says he didn’t admit to tone trolling, he is referring to the second sentence:

          I am not tone trolling. Instead, I am pointing out hostile or uncivil remarks.

          It is like he is saying, “I am killing people. Instead, I am pointing a gun at people and pulling the trigger.” He doesn’t kill anybody, the bullet hole does.

        • Ignorant Amos

          For a self-proclaimed credentialed philosopher, he really isn’t much, no wonder Bob has no faith in philosophers, going by GW’s example. He hasn’t a clue about fallacious arguments. On this instance, it is a Distinction Without a Difference

          Description: The assertion that a position is different from another position based on the language when, in fact, both positions are the same — at least in practice or practical terms.

          https://www.logicallyfallacious.com/tools/lp/Bo/LogicalFallacies/80/Distinction-Without-a-Difference

        • Ignorant Amos

          Thirdly, when I identify these kinds of remarks, I am not “detracting from the validity of a statement.” I engage directly with the validity of statements and show how claims of others are mistaken. I add criticisms of hostile and uncivil remarks when I detect them, most of the time.

          Well that’s a blatant lie for starters and can be demonstrated as such here…

          “Oh ffs…that you think that murder and child destruction are the same, demonstrates your problem to everyone here all day long.”

          Technical foul! Here you are out of line. Present your claims without mean words and I’ll be happy to discuss your claims with you.

          https://disqus.com/home/discussion/crossexamined/two_sizes_too_small_for_what_social_errors_will_history_condemn_us_92/#comment-4412037585

          And therefore completely avoided engaging in the content of the combox contradicting your claim above…

          https://disqus.com/home/discussion/crossexamined/two_sizes_too_small_for_what_social_errors_will_history_condemn_us_92/#comment-4411869977

          That is the epitome of Tone Trolling by definition.

        • Kodie

          He doesn’t just point out hostile or uncivil remarks, he tells you how to talk to him so he’ll talk to you, like I wish he would just go the fuck away if he doesn’t really understand how to get along with humans.

        • Max Doubt

          “I am not tone trolling. Instead, I am pointing out hostile or uncivil remarks.”

          Let’s look back a bit, shall we?

          Please don’t call hypotheses which differ from your own “rubbish.” Just say “I disagree” or “I think you are mistaken.”

          Yep, you’re tone trolling, ya ignorant uncivil dick.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Oh that is without a doubt tone trolling. Pofarmer wasn’t even commenting to you and you’ve tone trolled him, ya lousy prick.

          That is gold plated priceless being hoist by yer own petard.

        • Ignorant Amos

          GW: Strict Enforcement of a Law Against Abortion:
          1. Statement of a specific penalty for violation in the law.
          2. Widespread education (including warnings) about the law, especially to women, doctors who might perform abortions, and law enforcement officers.
          3. Reliable and competent investigation of reports, complaints, or accusations that a violation has occurred.
          4. Reliable prosecution, rendering of due process, and findings of guilt where there is sufficient evidence of violation.
          5. Reliable and fair implementation of the penalty stated in the law.
          6. A sufficient penalty would probably be a year and a day in jail for women and doctors who violate the law.

          That doesn’t work. You are being a cretin.

          A comprehensive global study of abortion has concluded that abortion rates are similar in countries where it is legal and those where it is not, suggesting that outlawing the procedure does little to deter women seeking it.

          Moreover, the researchers found that abortion was safe in countries where it was legal, but dangerous in countries where it was outlawed and performed clandestinely. Globally, abortion accounts for 13 percent of women’s deaths during pregnancy and childbirth, and there are 31 abortions for every 100 live births, the study said.

          The results of the study, a collaboration between scientists from the World Health Organization in Geneva and the Guttmacher Institute in New York, a reproductive rights group, are being published Friday in the journal Lancet.

          “We now have a global picture of induced abortion in the world, covering both countries where it is legal and countries where laws are very restrictive,” Dr. Paul Van Look, director of the W.H.O. Department of Reproductive Health and Research, said in a telephone interview. “What we see is that the law does not influence a woman’s decision to have an abortion. If there’s an unplanned pregnancy, it does not matter if the law is restrictive or liberal.”

          But the legal status of abortion did greatly affect the dangers involved, the researchers said. “Generally, where abortion is legal it will be provided in a safe manner,” Dr. Van Look said. “And the opposite is also true: where it is illegal, it is likely to be unsafe, performed under unsafe conditions by poorly trained providers.”

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

          The evidence says you are wrong.

          At this point, you are just being a nasty wee cuntrary prick.

        • Kodie

          Gary Whitenberger, your hostile remarks are not helpful. I can’t even start listing all the hostility you lay out without expectation of reaction. You are just one fussy little asshole being hostile and not recognizing yourself, but pointing out others and threaten them, because just who the hell do you think you are again? Nobody more important than anyone else, nobody we have to obey. What an arrogant fuck you are.

        • Ignorant Amos

          A nearly pished maself laughing when I read…“Please don’t call hypotheses which differ from your own “rubbish.”

          Why? There is no credit to be given to an unsupported assertion. Claiming it an hypothesis with an equal footing to the alternative is just plain barking mad.

          Geo-centrism as a viable hypothesis, is rubbish.

          The Flat-Earth hypothesis, is rubbish.

          Sugar pill and dilution homeopathy, is rubbish.

          Gary is either really naive, or as dumb as fuck.

          The Issac Asimov essay “The Relativity of Being Wrong” is apt on this occasion methinks.

          https://chem.tufts.edu/answersinscience/relativityofwrong.htm

        • GW1: Rubbish? That’s pretty arrogant of you.

          IA2: Not a bit of it.

          GW2: Yes, when you call somebody else’s ideas “rubbish” you are acting arrogantly.

          GW1: Please don’t call hypotheses which differ from your own “rubbish.”

          IA2: A claim made without support is conjecture…an assertion…not an hypothesis…so until it’s more than that, rubbish will do fine.

          GW2: A hypothesis is a conjecture made in testable form. No, “rubbish” will not do fine. Not for me. I asked you to not call my beliefs, claims, conjectures, or hypotheses “rubbish,” but you did not cooperate. You make some good points, but if you continue to refer to things I say as “rubbish” I will ignore your posts.

          GW1: Just say “I disagree” or “I think you are mistaken.”

          IA2: I might, if you support your claim…until such time it’s just rubbish. But am prepared to be proven in error.

          GW2: You should prepare yourself to say “I disagree,” “I think you are mistaken” or other similar things. But to call other peoples’ ideas “rubbish” is unethical debate behavior.

          GW1: I read the summary of that report from Guttmacher. Your citation says that abortion rates are slightly higher in the countries with strict laws than in the countries with lenient laws. I don’t know if the difference is statistically significant, but I doubt it. Also, we are given no information about enforcement. I would predict that where there is both strict laws and strict enforcement, the rate of abortions would be lower.

          IA2: I don’t really care what you “predict”, I’m more concerned about what you can demonstrate…which so far has been zilch.

          GW2: You should care what I predict. Your caring would be part of cooperative engagement in debate. In general, where punishment of a behavior is reliable the rate of a behavior is lower than where punishment of a behavior is unreliable. My prediction for abortion is based on that.

          IA2: You argument here is that where there is better law enforcement, there are less abortions? Really? More rubbish?
          http://news.trust.org/item/

          GW2: More calling my ideas “rubbish”? Do you actually want me to stop communicating with you? Also, instead of just throwing a link at me, please present a relevant quote from the linked article first, followed by the link.

          GW1: Do you have any evidence to the contrary?

          IA2: The report you didn’t read that I linked to for starters.

          GW2: Please present a relevant and specific quote to support your point and then the link. Just throwing links at people is like others throwing the Bible at you. Be relevant, specific, and helpful.

          IA2: You seem to be struggling with the concept under discussion. The rate of abortions doesn’t change significantly whether it is illegal, restricted, or readily available. It is the risk to life via illegal terminations where women are forced to seek backstreet terminations. So the net human death is increased by the addition of the mothers that don’t make it. Law enforcement won’t curtail the actions of desperate women.

          GW2: I disagree that I am struggling with the concept under discussion. I am just skeptical about some of the points you are making. As I said before, I believe that the rate of death of women who get illegal abortions is higher than the rate of death of women getting legal abortions, but I am still skeptical of your other point, even though you have presented some evidence for it. I also understand your point about “net human death” but that it is dependent on the accuracy of two rate differentials. Also, UNRELIABLE law enforcement will not curtail the actions of desperate women.

          IA2: A new report on women’s access to abortion around the world by United States think tank the Guttmacher Institute estimates that up to 31,000 women die every year as a result of botched abortions and around seven million are injured or made ill.
          Complications include incomplete abortion, when part of the fetal tissue is left in the uterus; infection; heavy bleeding; and damage to the genital tract and internal organs when a sharp object such as a stick, glass or knitting needle is inserted.

          GW2: I have no reason to doubt this finding.

          IA2: Abortion rates are similar in countries where it is broadly legal and where it is highly restrictive – 34 abortions take place for every 1,000 women in countries where it is not restricted and 37 per 1,000 where it is legal.

          GW2: That could be the case if the enforcement of the law is nonexistent or unreliable.

        • Kodie

          Gary, you’re so dishonest to yourself. If someone says it’s rubbish, or bullshit, or whatever, maybe you should examine what you propose instead of being so arrogant and fussy.

        • In response to the argument that God owns everyone’s life and can do with those lives as he wants (so he’s not morally reprehensible for all the deaths he causes), I say that he gave that life to the person and it’s not his to take away anymore.

          Perhaps the same applies to sperm: by having sex, the man gave the sperm to the woman and has no inherent right over her for what becomes of it.

        • Kodie

          Well, this is why marriage was invented, to contract a man to raise any children he makes, and women are still shamed for having consensual sex outside of marriage, using birth control, and blamed for getting raped. The way procreation works, men can get away from the responsibility easily, and often do/have. If a woman had sex with that guy, then she’s “easy”, so the man thinks there’s a decent chance it’s not his that he can get away with (not anymore with DNA tests).

          Abortion just levels the playing field, but the guy gets nothing if he wants that “baby” to be born, because his end of the transaction is complete. He’s got 200 million sperm per ejaculation, and it wouldn’t be too hard to find a woman who actually wants to have a child, if that’s what he wants too, vs. a woman who wants to have a child has a harder time to find a man who wants to have a child when she is ready, like when she is older than many men prefer in a mate, because she stinks of desperation because she is only fertile for so long… I know this is a generalization, but it is still a very big part of what goes on. Gary is a sexist, misogynistic asshole. I mean, I really think the flip argument is when a man doesn’t want to have a baby, but has to be held financially responsible until the child is 18, and men don’t like that option. Enslaving women to get her baby in the end is not how this usually goes. Enslaving women so they have to deal with their consequences of having sex, while men deny responsibility is usually the way it goes.

        • Pofarmer
        • Yes, really they believe this and it is probably true. I read somewhere that there have been 50 million abortions in the US since Roe v. Wade. Surely you know that all of these were regarded as murder or wrongful deaths by most prolife advocates.

        • Pofarmer

          Not what I was talking about.

          claim that more lives of human organisms will be saved by outlawing abortion than by legalizing it is true.

          I’m not sure exactly what Ignorant Amos link to Guttmacher was. But Guttmacher consistently shows abortions are higher in countries with very strict abortion laws.

        • His citation says that abortion rates are slightly higher in the countries with strict laws than in the countries with lenient laws. I don’t know if the difference is statistically significant, but I doubt it. Also, we are given no information about enforcement. I would predict that where there is both strict laws and strict enforcement, the rate of abortions would be lower.

        • Pofarmer

          Check out abortion rates in El Salvador and Chile. In Chile both abortion and contraception I believe were illegal. Abortion rates for about 4 times the US. I think El Salvador is similar.

        • How can rates of abortion be accurately determined in countries where it is illegal?

        • Pofarmer

          They estimate it off of hospital admissions for complications,

        • Really? That seems quite prone to errors of estimation. One problem is that there is an error rate for doctors who look at a medical problem for a woman and infer that it was due to a botched abortion.

          I would like to read more about their exact methodology, however.

        • Pofarmer

          Google is your buddy.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Ya’d think…ya wanna see the position of ignorance he was arguing from on the John Chau debacle.

        • Pofarmer

          He pretty much has a religious position, as dogmatic as he is.

        • Ignorant Amos

          They can’t be “accurately” determined, which means that the data is skewed on the conservative side, which doesn’t help your position one iota.

          Different methods of observation are used to measure abortion levels and to overcome the difficulties encountered in observing this area. Analyses of the information gathered has lead to the conclusion that the practice is under-recorded, and that the data produced merely gives a low estimate of abortion levels. In an article summarizing the measurement of abortion levels, Rossier C. (2003) mentions eight methods of estimating the frequency of abortion:

          · surveys carried out on practitioners of illegal abortions,

          · statistics on abortion-related complications,

          · statistics on maternal mortality,

          · surveys in which women are interviewed directly about their abortions,

          · prospective studies,

          · the residual method,

          · a method in which people are asked to anonymously report abortions undergone within their entourage,

          · expert estimations.

          We will not go into detail about all of these methods (e.g. calculation, bias etc.). Instead we will be essentially focusing on surveys carried out on women and on those surveys concerned with abortion-related complications, which are the most widely documented in research in Africa.

          http://www.ceped.org/avortement/gb/chap2/800/chapitre2-800.htm

          So the issue is even more problematic for you, given the underestimation in the data.

        • Thank you for being civil in this post.

          This is not very helpful. I want to know the exact methodology for the Guttmacher conclusion that rates of abortion in countries where abortion is illegal were about the same as rates of abortion in countries where abortion is legal.

          However, even if I accepted the conclusion at face value, I’d want to explore why the finding came out that way because it goes against expectation.

          1. The difference may be due to lax enforcement in countries with abortion bans.
          2. The difference may be due to low detection of abortions in countries with abortion bans.
          3. The difference may be due to an “escape hatch.” Women in countries with abortion bans travel to countries without abortion bans, get their abortions, return to their home countries, and then on surveys report that they have had abortions. The data then give the impression than bans don’t work.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Thank you for being civil in this post.

          I don’t know why you are so thin skinned, but anyway…I’ll endeavor to curb my way when interacting with you. Though a can’t promise exasperation won’t get the better of me.

          This is not very helpful. I want to know the exact methodology for the Guttmacher conclusion that rates of abortion in countries where abortion is illegal were about the same as rates of abortion in countries where abortion is legal.

          I’m going to go with the idea that they are using recognized scientific research methods on this…at least until they are demonstrated to be flawed.

          Data and Methods Appendix

          https://www.guttmacher.org/report/abortion-worldwide-2017

          However, even if I accepted the conclusion at face value, I’d want to explore why the finding came out that way because it goes against expectation.

          Take it up with the researchers. In light that you’ve provided nothing alternative, this is where we are…but I can wait.

          1. The difference may be due to lax enforcement in countries with abortion bans.

          Ignoratio elenchi…it may, but unless you can demonstrate that the figures are skewed due to a lax enforcement in countries with abortion bans, it is a taken that laws will be enforced. According to you anyway. Remember the “bank robbery” analogy?

          We have to assume that the laws are being enforced, the women are risking lives to procure dangerous unlawful procedures.

          But what metric would you suggest to test enforcement? Prison records? Enforcement or lack thereof, seems irrelevant here.

          2. The difference may be due to low detection of abortions in countries with abortion bans.

          Yeah, again…Ignoratio elenchi. Abortions data in places where there are bans are in place, is as a result mostly of the procedures that are unsuccessful in some manner. All those other abortions that go unrecorded because they worked out, only improves the data in my favor.

          3. The difference may be due to an “escape hatch.” Women in countries with abortion bans travel to countries without abortion bans, get their abortions, return to their home countries, and then on surveys report that they have had abortions. The data then give the impression than bans don’t work.

          Again….another Ignoratio elenchi fallacy. Let’s say a woman in Northern Ireland travels to England to have a termination. She returns to Northern Ireland and just happens to be approached by a researcher and asked if she had an abortion. Well yes, part of the procedure was the travelling to England, because abortion in Ni is illegal and fortunately she had the financial predisposition to afford the travelling part of here procedure. It is no less due to the law here that she went there. As for the numbers and their effects on the figures in your favor. Good luck demonstrating that one. Getting data from a person that went abroad to avail of the termination successfully, is going to be a lot easier than getting the numbers for those that stayed and got an unlawful termination successfully. And that’s in a first world country like the UK.

          No, these are irrelevancies you are clutching at. And if anything, the numbers will in all likely demonstrate the antithesis of what you are punting towards.

        • GW1: Thank you for being civil in this post.

          IA2: I don’t know why you are so thin skinned, but anyway…I’ll endeavor to curb my way when interacting with you. Though a can’t promise exasperation won’t get the better of me.

          GW2: I don’t know why you are so quick to make uncivil remarks, but anyway I appreciate your attempt to curb them. I have confidence in your ability to control your exasperation.

          GW1: This is not very helpful. I want to know the exact methodology for the Guttmacher conclusion that rates of abortion in countries where abortion is illegal were about the same as rates of abortion in countries where abortion is legal.

          IA2: I’m going to go with the idea that they are using recognized scientific research methods on this…at least until they are demonstrated to be flawed.

          GW2: Your endorsement doesn’t satisfy my curiosity.

          IA2: Data and Methods Appendix
          https://www.guttmacher.org/

          GW2: That might help.

          GW1: However, even if I accepted the conclusion at face value, I’d want to explore why the finding came out that way because it goes against expectation.

          IA2: Take it up with the researchers. In light that you’ve provided nothing alternative, this is where we are…but I can wait.

          GW2: Yes, I have provided something alternative – the vast literature of behavioral science which shows that punishment works.

          GW1: 1. The difference may be due to lax enforcement in countries with abortion bans.

          IA2: Ignoratio elenchi…it may, but unless you can demonstrate that the figures are skewed due to a lax enforcement in countries with abortion bans, it is a taken that laws will be enforced.

          GW2: You are assuming that the laws are being reliably enforced. I’m not.

          IA2: We have to assume that the laws are being enforced, the women are risking lives to procure dangerous unlawful procedures.

          GW2: The women may believe that the laws will be enforced, when they won’t. Also, the women do not risk their lives when they go with the “escape hatch.”

          IA2: But what metric would you suggest to test enforcement? Prison records? Enforcement or lack thereof, seems irrelevant here.

          GW2: That is actually a good question. For the countries where there are bans or severe restrictions on abortions, I suggest the measurement of complaints, arrests, investigations, prosecutions, trials, guilty verdicts, fines, and jail time for violations of the abortion law.

          GW1: 2. The difference may be due to low detection of abortions in countries with abortion bans.

          IA2: Yeah, again…Ignoratio elenchi. Abortions data in places where there are bans are in place, is as a result mostly of the procedures that are unsuccessful in some manner. All those other abortions that go unrecorded because they worked out, only improves the data in my favor.

          GW2: The data are not improved. You just think your conclusion is strengthened, and I think you are mistaken. In the countries with these bans or restrictions, the researchers should correlate their estimates of the rates of abortion with the measures of enforcement I suggested above. I think if the range is not too restricted they would find a significant negative correlation between the variables – the greater the enforcement, the lower the abortion rate. There is a real hypothesis for you, and the researchers.

          GW1: 3. The difference may be due to an “escape hatch.” Women in countries with abortion bans travel to countries without abortion bans, get their abortions, return to their home countries, and then on surveys report that they have had abortions. The data then give the impression than bans don’t work.

          IA2: Again….another Ignoratio elenchi fallacy.

          GW2: No, it’s not a fallacy. You actually suggested this escape hatch. I am just using your idea to help explain the Guttmacher finding.

          IA2: Let’s say a woman in Northern Ireland travels to England to have a termination. She returns to Northern Ireland and just happens to be approached by a researcher and asked if she had an abortion. Well yes, part of the procedure was the travelling to England, because abortion in Ni is illegal and fortunately she had the financial predisposition to afford the travelling part of here procedure. It is no less due to the law here that she went there.

          GW2: You’ve proved my point for me. Bans do work! If there was a ban across all countries, we’d see a decline in rates of abortion.

          IA2: As for the numbers and their effects on the figures in your favor. Good luck demonstrating that one. Getting data from a person that went abroad to avail of the termination successfully, is going to be a lot easier than getting the numbers for those that stayed and got an unlawful termination successfully. And that’s in a first world country like the UK.

          GW2: I never implied that this kind of data collection is easy. That’s why we should take the Guttmacher finding with a “grain of salt.”

          IA2: No, these are irrelevancies you are clutching at. And if anything, the numbers will in all likely demonstrate the antithesis of what you are punting towards.

          GW2: I disagree. Doing more research will in all likelihood support what I am suggesting.

          GW2: But still there is one important fact to take into account: When a woman unethically kills her fetal person, that counts as one death of a person, and in this case there is not always and not usually the death of the pregnant woman.

        • Ignorant Amos

          The link was to show that the difference, while being a few percent higher, it is not so much the number of abortions that is significant, women with unwanted pregnancies is a universal thing. But how they deal with those pregnancies is the issue. In an environment where legal abortion is taking place, there will be a lower mortality rate for those women seeking a termination. That poo-poo’s his assertion.

          So Gary’s assertion is rubbish. More human organisms will be lost where abortion is outlawed. That’s what the data shows by percentage points per capita.

          https://bmcwomenshealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12905-018-0705-y

          He’s throwing in an unsubstantiated caveat that it’s down to how strict the rules are implemented by law enforcement. But that’s a pie in the sky position to take.

          Northern Ireland has one of the strictest abortion laws in Europe. What that means is that the haves can afford to go to England and have the procedure done, while the have not’s have to make “alternative” arrangements. For some reason, Gary thinks that making the procedure illegal means a desperate pregnant woman will bite the bullet and just suck it up. In the real world, that’s not what happens.

          The problem is much more than just the access to the procedure either. There is a knock on effect.

          Mental health statistics highlight the grave emotional situation experienced by many of the 2m residents of Northern Ireland. Mental health problems are rife. Post-traumatic stress disorder rates are the highest in the world and female suicide rates in Northern Ireland are among the highest in Europe at 9.2 per 100,000 deaths.

          https://theconversation.com/abortion-ban-in-northern-ireland-likely-to-worsen-mental-health-crisis-98420

        • IA: The link was to show that the difference, while being a few percent higher, it is not so much the number of abortions that is significant, women with unwanted pregnancies is a universal thing. But how they deal with those pregnancies is the issue. In an environment where legal abortion is taking place, there will be a lower mortality rate for those women seeking a termination. That poo-poo’s his assertion.

          GW: I don’t doubt that there will be a higher rate of deaths for women who get illegal abortions than for those who get legal ones, but I’m still skeptical about the other difference you have cited, i.e. higher rate of abortions in countries where abortion is illegal. How are the rates determined in those countries where abortion is illegal?

          IA: So Gary’s assertion is rubbish. More human organisms will be lost where abortion is outlawed. That’s what the data shows by percentage points per capita.
          https://bmcwomenshealth.bio

          GW: No, my assertion is not rubbish; it is valuable. You mean that you don’t agree with it or you believe it is false. That’s different.

          IA: He’s throwing in an unsubstantiated caveat that it’s down to how strict the rules are implemented by law enforcement. But that’s a pie in the sky position to take.

          GW: It could be that in countries where abortion is illegal, the law against it is not enforced or poorly enforced, and this may account for the data you have cited. Usually, when a behavior is outlawed, e.g. bank robbery, and the behavior is consistently detected and punished, the rate of the behavior is lower than when it is not outlawed. This may not always be the case, but I believe it is usually the case.

          IA: Northern Ireland has one of the strictest abortion laws in Europe. What that means is that the haves can afford to go to England and have the procedure done, while the have not’s have to make “alternative” arrangements. For some reason, Gary thinks that making the procedure illegal means a desperate pregnant woman will bite the bullet and just suck it up. In the real world, that’s not what happens.

          GW: But what if that escape hatch were not available? What if abortion were illegal everywhere and the law against it was strictly enforced? This is probably the secret hope, perhaps goal, of the pro-life advocates. Don’t misunderstand me: I mostly disagree with the pro-life position, but I do believe that abortion is unethical under certain circumstances, that it should be illegal in those circumstances, and the laws should be enforced.

          IA: The problem is much more than just the access to the procedure either. There is a knock on effect.

          GW: What do you mean by “knock on effect”?

          IA: Mental health statistics highlight the grave emotional situation experienced by many of the 2m residents of Northern Ireland. Mental health problems are rife. Post-traumatic stress disorder rates are the highest in the world and female suicide rates in Northern Ireland are among the highest in Europe at 9.2 per 100,000 deaths.
          https://theconversation.com

          GW: Maybe, but this may related to issues other than abortion.

        • Ignorant Amos

          GW: I don’t doubt that there will be a higher rate of deaths for women who get illegal abortions than for those who get legal ones, but I’m still skeptical about the other difference you have cited, i.e. higher rate of abortions in countries where abortion is illegal.

          Well, the research makes those claims. I didn’t say there was a higher level of abortion where it is illegal against where it is legal. Though it likely is, given other factors. That’s irrelevant to my point.

          All things being equal. The thing I was taking issue with is your yet-to-be-supported assertion that more human organisms will be lost where abortion is outlawed. If the abortion rate is equal, then the mortality rate of the women is the deciding factor. And since you’ve conceded that you don’t doubt there will be a higher rate of deaths for women who get illegal abortions than legal ones, and that you concede that most abortions can be justified regardless if legal or illegal, by your own logic, your assertion is rubbish.

          How are the rates determined in those countries where abortion is illegal?

          http://www.ceped.org/avortement/gb/chap2/800/chapitre2-800.htm

          GW: No, my assertion is not rubbish; it is valuable.

          Yep, it is rubbish. Until you can show why it has value, it’s a rubbish assertion, i.e. open to criticize severely and reject as worthless.

          You mean that you don’t agree with it or you believe it is false.

          Yep. That too, but also rubbish.

          Check out a thesaurus…rubbish is synonymous with falsehood.

          I know what I mean. Not only don’t I agree with it and believe it to be false, I’m doing something you’re not, that is, supporting I don’t agree and believe it to be false. Until you do the same, all you have is an unsupported assertion that is worthless, i.e. rubbish.

          That’s different.

          Nah…it’s really not. Support your assertion and then we’ll see if it isn’t rubbish…it’s as simple as that.

        • Pofarmer

          Just reading a little bit about Chile, it said a lot of abortions are/were done by black market mifepristone. Work in Texas shows the same thing happening there. Women are finding ways to get mifepristone and doing their own abortions. Texas is making it harder for women to access birth control and family planning and education, so they take matters into their own hands. I imagine abortion rates in Texas and other states will actually increase because of this.

        • Ignorant Amos

          That is what is happening in Northern Ireland. And was in Eire up until the recent change in the law.

          https://www.amnesty.org.uk/press-releases/northern-ireland-woman-who-bought-abortion-pills-daughter-court-challenge-1

          Gary is living in a bubble. He hasn’t a clue as to just how desperate, or how far the actions of folk will go on this issue. The law be damned.

        • Aram

          Gary hasn’t a clue, full stop.

        • Greg G.

          I keep getting the feeling that he is unable to conceive of the feelings and thought processes of other people. He can only project his own views on someone he sees as similar to himself.

        • Aram

          His complete lack of empathy is clearly evident, yes.

        • That seems like the obvious response, and it’s good to hear that it’s happening. It’d be good to have this done with clinical supervision, but it’s a lot better than the surgical procedures done before Roe.

          Conservatives want to control sexuality, but they’re squeezing too hard. They’re forcing women to get educated on their options.

          There’s a bit of schadenfreude here.

        • Ignorant Amos

          GW: It could be that in countries where abortion is illegal, the law against it is not enforced or poorly enforced, and this may account for the data you have cited.

          Could be. How does that help your assertion though?

          Usually, when a behavior is outlawed, e.g. bank robbery, and the behavior is consistently detected and punished, the rate of the behavior is lower than when it is not outlawed.

          That’s the analogy you want to go with?

          When was bank robbery at one time not outlawed?

          Who does bank robbery effect that abortion doesn’t?

          Given limited resources, which crime should get the most attention?

          A better analogy would be Prohibition. It was a complete and utter failure and caused a lot more problems then it solved.

          The lessons of Prohibition remain important today. They apply not only to the debate over the war on drugs but also to the mounting efforts to drastically reduce access to alcohol and tobacco and to such issues as censorship and bans on insider trading, abortion, and gambling.

          https://object.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa157.pdf

          This may not always be the case, but I believe it is usually the case.

          So what? It does nothing to rescue your rubbish assertion. This is nothing more than an attempt at smoke and mirrors rabbit hole tunneling.

          GW: But what if that escape hatch were not available? What if abortion were illegal everywhere and the law against it was strictly enforced? This is probably the secret hope, perhaps goal, of the pro-life advocates.

          I don’t understand what your point is here. The point is, women will want abortion for x, y & z reasons. They will seek those abortions out, regardless of the legality of the country they are in. When that happens, having access to legal procedures in the correct environment, reduces the mortality rate of those woman vis a vis those that haven’t, ergo the assertion that more life will be saved where abortion is unlawful, is rubbish.

          Don’t misunderstand me: I mostly disagree with the pro-life position, but I do believe that abortion is unethical under certain circumstances, that it should be illegal in those circumstances, and the laws should be enforced.

          I know what your position is Gary. I’ve seen it enough times on comment boards. But it is a non sequitur to this discussion. In fact, it actually makes your position worse taken to to it’s logical conclusion. Given that there is a limited number of circumstances where you would outlaw abortion, then only those circumstances need be considered. Under those circumstances, there is a far greater risk to mortality than not. So given that there will be the same number desperate to abort under these conditions, because that’s what the data suggests, being illegal won’t prevent the desperate doing desperate things…which makes your assertion that more lives will be saved by making such procedures unlawful. This simpleness you have that the laws should be enforced smacks of naivety that it is as easy as you say so a la arresting John Chau’s murderers.

          GW: What do you mean by “knock on effect”?

          You don’t think that removing the rights to bodily autonomy from women has a knock on effect in society? Can’t you think of one example forcing women to have unwanted children, having to access illegal abortions, having access legal abortions elsewhere at a heavy financial burden, having to carry the stigma because privacy can’t be maintained, etc., etc.?

          In addition to the deaths and disabilities caused by unsafe abortion, there are major social and financial costs to women, families, communities, and health systems. In 2006, it was estimated that US$ 553 million was spent treating serious consequences of unsafe abortion (4). An additional US$ 375 million would be required to fully meet the unmet need for treatment of complications from unsafe abortion (4).

          It behooves you to read up and understand the subject you care to engage in discussing. If there is only one web page you should ever read, then make it one such as this one…

          https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/preventing-unsafe-abortion

          GW: Maybe, but this may related to issues other than abortion.

          Yes…and the article makes that point too…if you’d bothered to read it. Nevertheless, it also says…

          No one chooses to have an abortion lightly. An abortion is a stigmatising loss that is difficult to discuss with friends and family. Isolation, social disconnectedness, bereavement and abandonment by an otherwise universal health service all add to the trauma. Also, promoting a public sense of shame on abortion – with members of parliament publicly comparing abortions to putting babies “in the bin before they are born” – could create a lethal mental health cocktail.

          Research suggests that we should be concerned. Our recent research, examining GP visits before suicide, identified no cases in which abortion acted as a trigger. But we found relevant associations – female suicides were linked to threats to female identity, similar to those threats to masculinity that are frequently cited as a factor in male suicide. Sexual abuse, fertility difficulties, relationship conflicts and financial pressures of parenting all featured in female death by suicide.

          Suicide deaths and mental health problems rarely conform to a simple pattern of cause and effect. Nevertheless, state-sponsored oppression of female human rights, in a vulnerable post-conflict setting, is unlikely to help the females of Northern Ireland, who, since the Republic voted to end the ban, now find themselves surrounded by more compassionate humanitarian arrangements.

        • GW1: It could be that in countries where abortion is illegal, the law against it is not enforced or poorly enforced, and this may account for the data you have cited.

          IA2: Could be. How does that help your assertion though?

          GW2: Given the finding from Guttmacher which you presented, I am leaning away from my original assertion, but I am still somewhat skeptical of the finding itself. And even if it is true, I want to know why because it is counter-intuitive.

          GW1: Usually, when a behavior is outlawed, e.g. bank robbery, and the behavior is consistently detected and punished, the rate of the behavior is lower than when it is not outlawed.

          IA2: That’s the analogy you want to go with?

          GW2: Yes, for now.

          IA2: When was bank robbery at one time not outlawed?

          GW2: I don’t know.

          IA2: Who does bank robbery effect that abortion doesn’t?

          GW2: There are victims in both instances, but they are not the same victims.

          IA2: Given limited resources, which crime should get the most attention?

          GW2: That’s irrelevant. Let’s enforce both laws.
          IA2: A better analogy would be Prohibition. It was a complete and utter failure and caused a lot more problems then it solved.

          GW2: But we’re discussing rates of behavior. What were the rates of selling and buying alcohol before, during, and after Prohibition? That would be relevant. Also, there must be other relevant examples.

          IA2: The lessons of Prohibition remain important today. They apply not only to the debate over the war on drugs but also to the mounting efforts to drastically reduce access to alcohol and tobacco and to such issues as censorship and bans on insider trading, abortion, and gambling.
          https://object.cato.org/pub

          GW2: I am not advocating for a prohibition on abortion. I am advocating for a restriction on abortion in special circumstances. It is a very narrow restriction which would affect only a small percentage of the cases.

          GW1: This may not always be the case, but I believe it is usually the case.

          IA2: So what? It does nothing to rescue your rubbish assertion. This is nothing more than an attempt at smoke and mirrors rabbit hole tunneling.

          GW2: There you go again, relapsing with your “rubbish” comments. Do you want to have this discussion or not? Besides, we’ve gone beyond my original assertion that you were concerned about.

          GW1: But what if that escape hatch were not available? What if abortion were illegal everywhere and the law against it was strictly enforced? This is probably the secret hope, perhaps goal, of the pro-life advocates.

          IA2: I don’t understand what your point is here. The point is, women will want abortion for x, y & z reasons. They will seek those abortions out, regardless of the legality of the country they are in. When that happens, having access to legal procedures in the correct environment, reduces the mortality rate of those woman vis a vis those that haven’t, ergo the assertion that more life will be saved where abortion is unlawful, is rubbish.

          GW2: Yes, you are missing my point. One explanation of the Guttmacher finding may be the “escape hatch.” If abortion were illegal everywhere, then the rates of abortion would surely go down. My ideas are not rubbish. Please stop calling them that. Are your ideas rubbish?

          GW1: Don’t misunderstand me: I mostly disagree with the pro-life position, but I do believe that abortion is unethical under certain circumstances, that it should be illegal in those circumstances, and the laws should be enforced.

          IA2: I know what your position is Gary. I’ve seen it enough times on comment boards. But it is a non sequitur to this discussion. In fact, it actually makes your position worse taken to to it’s logical conclusion.

          GW2: I disagree. I have given good evidence, reasons, and arguments for my position. You just don’t agree.

          IA2: Given that there is a limited number of circumstances where you would outlaw abortion, then only those circumstances need be considered. Under those circumstances, there is a far greater risk to mortality than not.

          GW2: Risk to whom? Where there is an unethical abortion of a fetal person, there is almost always the death of a fetal person. So the risk to fetal persons is very high.

          IA2: So given that there will be the same number desperate to abort under these conditions, because that’s what the data suggests, being illegal won’t prevent the desperate doing desperate things…which makes your assertion that more lives will be saved by making such procedures unlawful.

          GW2: I disagree with your first premise here. The percentage of women “desperate to abort” varies with week of pregnancy, and this makes a huge difference. If we allow women great freedom to abort in the first 24 weeks of the life of the ZEEF, the percentage of these Desperate Women will be quite low in the last 15 weeks. Also, Desperate Women are not necessarily ethical women.

          IA2: This simpleness you have that the laws should be enforced smacks of naivety that it is as easy as you say so a la arresting John Chau’s murderers.

          GW2: Irrelevant. Try to stay on topic.

          GW1: What do you mean by “knock on effect”?

          IA2: You don’t think that removing the rights to bodily autonomy from women has a knock on effect in society?

          GW2: You misunderstood me. Please provide a definition of “knock on effect.” I don’t know what you mean.

          IA2: Can’t you think of one example forcing women to have unwanted children, having to access illegal abortions, having access legal abortions elsewhere at a heavy financial burden, having to carry the stigma because privacy can’t be maintained, etc., etc.?

          GW2: I think this may be a straw man. I am not proposing that these women become the caretakers of the children which result from coercing them to continue the pregnancy for 15 weeks.

          IA2: In addition to the deaths and disabilities caused by unsafe abortion, there are major social and financial costs to women, families, communities, and health systems. In 2006, it was estimated that US$ 553 million was spent treating serious consequences of unsafe abortion (4). An additional US$ 375 million would be required to fully meet the unmet need for treatment of complications from unsafe abortion (4).

          GW2: Getting an unsafe abortion is itself an unethical act.

          IA2: It behooves you to read up and understand the subject you care to engage in discussing. If there is only one web page you should ever read, then make it one such as this one…
          https://www.who.int/news-ro

          GW2: It behooves you to critically read what you read and to draw rational conclusions therefrom.

          GW1: Maybe, but this may related to issues other than abortion.

          IA2: Yes…and the article makes that point too…if you’d bothered to read it. Nevertheless, it also says…

          “No one chooses to have an abortion lightly. An abortion is a stigmatising loss that is difficult to discuss with friends and family. Isolation, social disconnectedness, bereavement and abandonment by an otherwise universal health service all add to the trauma. Also, promoting a public sense of shame on abortion – with members of parliament publicly comparing abortions to putting babies “in the bin before they are born” – could create a lethal mental health cocktail.”

          “Research suggests that we should be concerned. Our recent research, examining GP visits before suicide, identified no cases in which abortion acted as a trigger. But we found relevant associations – female suicides were linked to threats to female identity, similar to those threats to masculinity that are frequently cited as a factor in male suicide. Sexual abuse, fertility difficulties, relationship conflicts and financial pressures of parenting all featured in female death by suicide.”

          “Suicide deaths and mental health problems rarely conform to a simple pattern of cause and effect. Nevertheless, state-sponsored oppression of female human rights, in a vulnerable post-conflict setting, is unlikely to help the females of Northern Ireland, who, since the Republic voted to end the ban, now find themselves surrounded by more compassionate humanitarian arrangements.”

          GW2: Interesting, but mostly irrelevant to the debate we’re having. When a woman gets an abortion of the fetal person inside her, except for a few good reasons, she is behaving in horrible, unethical, and immoral way – not only killing her fetal person but endangering herself as well. You should not ignore this. For every unjustified death of a fetal person, there is not a corresponding death of the pregnant woman.

        • Ignorant Amos

          GW2: Given the finding from Guttmacher which you presented, I am leaning away from my original assertion,…

          That’s grand.

          …but I am still somewhat skeptical of the finding itself. And even if it is true, I want to know why because it is counter-intuitive.

          Can I make an observation, if I may?

          In the developing world where abortion is more prolific counter intuitively to it being illegal, it might be because of a lack of contraception, proper sex education, social welfare, etc., but in the developed world, where these things are at least a lot better than those other places, yet abortion is legal, the numbers aren’t running away with themselves due to outlandish pregnancy numbers.

          It’s just an observation which dovetails nicely with Bob’s thesis that the best way to reduce abortion rates everywhere, is to better educate, regardless of the legality arguments pro-choice.

          Seems to me to be the rational explanation to the disparity imo.

          GW2: I am not advocating for a prohibition on abortion. I am advocating for a restriction on abortion in special circumstances. It is a very narrow restriction which would affect only a small percentage of the cases.

          But that isn’t the point I’m taking issue with, or the one you are defending.

          GW2: There you go again, relapsing with your “rubbish” comments.

          Look, if you are so offended by the word “rubbish” as used, then pick a synonym you are more content with, you are acting like a bit of a snowflake…I suggested “falsehood”…they mean the same thing.

          Do you want to have this discussion or not?

          I can take it or leave it…but I won’t be tone policed on what words I use. That’s fallacious engagement on your part.

          Besides, we’ve gone beyond my original assertion that you were concerned about.

          We may have, but I missed where we’d settled the point.

          GW2: Yes, you are missing my point. One explanation of the Guttmacher finding may be the “escape hatch.”

          The “escape hatch” is a red herring of yours to fudge the numbers.

          Demonstrate that those going outside the boundaries of the law has an impact in any significant way and we can go from there.

          If abortion were illegal everywhere, then the rates of abortion would surely go down.

          Why Gary? Why? Women getting pregnant and requiring a terminations won’t go away because the it is unlawful. That is demonstrable. What reduces abortion is the need for them. This will never be a zero situation.

          My ideas are not rubbish. Please stop calling them that.

          Roll back a bit. Your assertion that I took exception to, was very bad. If your assertion was based on any rationally informed idea, then sorry Gary, it was misinformed rubbish.

          Are your ideas rubbish?

          Yes, darn tooting they are, when they are pulled from my backside with little to no thought or research, which is why I try very hard to avoid such situations. Something I’ve improved at over the years, but am still not perfect. Sometimes I say stuff that is misinformed too. In other words, it’s rubbish.

          Anyway, must dash…I’ve a friends 60th birthday party to get ready for, so I’ll have to take up where I’ve left off sometime later…but not tomorrow because the football kicks off at lunchtime. Laters.

        • Pofarmer

          “It’s just an observation which dovetails nicely with Bob’s thesis that
          the best way to reduce abortion rates everywhere, is to better educate,
          regardless of the legality arguments pro-choice.”

          But then you don’t get to be a judgmental asshole!

        • GW2: Given the finding from Guttmacher which you presented, I am leaning away from my original assertion,…

          IA3: That’s grand.

          GW3: I think it is a reasonable change.

          GW2: …but I am still somewhat skeptical of the finding itself. And even if it is true, I want to know why because it is counter-intuitive.

          IA3: Can I make an observation, if I may?
          In the developing world where abortion is more prolific counter intuitively to it being illegal, it might be because of a lack of contraception, proper sex education, social welfare, etc., but in the developed world, where these things are at least a lot better than those other places, yet abortion is legal, the numbers aren’t running away with themselves due to outlandish pregnancy numbers.

          GW3: Maybe.

          IA3: It’s just an observation which dovetails nicely with Bob’s thesis that the best way to reduce abortion rates everywhere, is to better educate, regardless of the legality arguments pro-choice.

          GW3: I certainly agree with better sex education everywhere. However, I’d actually like to see the rate of abortions increase when abortion is ethical and the pregnancy is unplanned, unintended, unwise, and/or irrational.

          IA3: Seems to me to be the rational explanation to the disparity imo.

          GW3: Doesn’t seem that way to me.

          GW2: I am not advocating for a prohibition on abortion. I am advocating for a restriction on abortion in special circumstances. It is a very narrow restriction which would affect only a small percentage of the cases.

          IA3: But that isn’t the point I’m taking issue with, or the one you are defending.

          GW3: But I believe that narrow restriction compared to a wide ban has consequences which are important to our discussion, as I have tried to explain.

          GW2: There you go again, relapsing with your “rubbish” comments.

          IA3: Look, if you are so offended by the word “rubbish” as used, then pick a synonym you are more content with, you are acting like a bit of a snowflake…I suggested “falsehood”…they mean the same thing.

          GW3: It is your responsibility to pick civil words. You are acting like a bit of a bully. No, falsehood and rubbish do not mean the same thing. “I believe your claim is false” is acceptable to me.

          GW2: Do you want to have this discussion or not?

          IA3: I can take it or leave it…but I won’t be tone policed on what words I use. That’s fallacious engagement on your part.

          GW3: Well, if you don’t want to have the discussion, then keep calling my ideas “rubbish.” I engage in incivility policing. If you don’t like that, you are free to end your engagement.

          GW2: Besides, we’ve gone beyond my original assertion that you were concerned about.

          IA3: We may have, but I missed where we’d settled the point.

          GW3: We settled the point gradually, but I made this clear in the last post.

          GW2: Yes, you are missing my point. One explanation of the Guttmacher finding may be the “escape hatch.”

          IA3: The “escape hatch” is a red herring of yours to fudge the numbers.

          GW3: No, it’s not. It is a possible explanation of the numbers which were reported. And ironically, you suggested it. I adopted it. Thank you.

          IA3: Demonstrate that those going outside the boundaries of the law has an impact in any significant way and we can go from there.

          GW3: It is significant whenever a person is killed for no good reason.

          GW2: If abortion were illegal everywhere, then the rates of abortion would surely go down.

          IA3: Why Gary? Why? Women getting pregnant and requiring a terminations won’t go away because the it is unlawful. That is demonstrable. What reduces abortion is the need for them. This will never be a zero situation.

          GW3: Straw man argument. Notice how you substituted “zero situation” for “go down.” Reliable punishment has a deterrent effect.

          GW2: My ideas are not rubbish. Please stop calling them that.

          IA3: Roll back a bit. Your assertion that I took exception to, was very bad. If your assertion was based on any rationally informed idea, then sorry Gary, it was misinformed rubbish.

          GW3: I think it would be best for us to stop now. You are insistent on calling my ideas “rubbish.”

          GW2: Are your ideas rubbish?

          IA3: Yes, darn tooting they are, when they are pulled from my backside with little to no thought or research, which is why I try very hard to avoid such situations. Something I’ve improved at over the years, but am still not perfect. Sometimes I say stuff that is misinformed too. In other words, it’s rubbish.

          GW3: I disagree with you. Your ideas are not rubbish, and I will not call them rubbish. Your ideas may be false, incorrect, unfounded, misleading, irrational, etc, but they are not rubbish.

          IA3: Anyway, must dash…I’ve a friends 60th birthday party to get ready for, so I’ll have to take up where I’ve left off sometime later…but not tomorrow because the football kicks off at lunchtime. Laters.

          GW3: Your dash is opportune. I’m ending the discussion for my part.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Yes, really they believe this and it is probably true. I read somewhere that there have been 50 million abortions in the US since Roe v. Wade.

          “They”…”believe”…”probably”….ha ha ha…no real evidence then.

          You read “somewhere”? Jaysus fuck!

          The figure 50 million is as meaningless as your vacuous comment.

          Surely you know that all of these were regarded as murder or wrongful deaths by most prolife advocates.

          Fuck ’em!

        • Sample1

          Abortion is highest in Catholic dominated countries. Just think about that. In the US, Catholics are about equal the rate as having abortions as other Americans. Overall, two out of three women having abortions in the US identify as Christian. (Wiki)

          So…if these are all murders, haven’t Christians surpassed so-called atheist regimes in terms of death rates?

          Logic. It’s a cruel bitch mother.

          Mike, excommunicated

        • Pofarmer

          Logic. It’s a cruel bitch mother.

          Not if you just ignore it and focus on theology.

          “They weren’t doing it right!!!!!” Eleventy.

        • According to my data, (1) the per capita abortion rate is higher in countries where it’s illegal than in the US, and (2) before Roe, the per capita abortion rate was higher in the US than it is now. So, no, making abortion illegal won’t get the pro-lifers what they want (assuming we take them at their word that reducing abortions is their goal).

        • Where abortion is illegal, how do researchers determine an accurate rate for abortion?

          Also, even if outlawing abortion doesn’t reduce its rate, this doesn’t mean that abortion is morally correct in all cases, right?

        • It means that outlawing abortion is a misdirection. Anyone who truly wants to reduce abortion should pursue the course that leads to fewer abortions.

        • Kodie

          What “people” are they saving? They imagine the abortions are people who never get to be born, which is how I think of all my periods, right? Is that how you think of your hundreds of millions of sperm?

    • I disagree. They believe that all human zygotes, embryos,and fetuses are people. They believe they are saving the lives of people.

    • Sample1

      Next it will be cellular respiration. The arbitrariness for the heart is pure theater.

      Mike, excommunicated

      • Pofarmer

        This stupid thing is, at the 6 week mark what’s beating isn’t even a heart.

        • Sample1

          Arguably not a person’s heart for that matter.

          Mike, faith free

      • anne marie hovgaard

        You can have a “heart beat” in a petri dish. Pure theater.

  • NS Alito

    Polyamory is one thing, polygamous civil marriage is another: I think the laws defining default probate and end-of-life authority for 2-person marriages did not change with SSM, but trying to establish default property divisions on death or divorce* with 3 or more parties would be a logistical nightmare.

    Maybe one way is to demand that each party in the marriage has to agree to property combination, distribution or separation, to make living wills, etc. established prenuptially.

    ___________

    *The ancient Egyptians had more texts on divorce than on marriage, since divorce entailed the legal division of property.

    • Prenuptially? You mean having a real marriage contract?

      • NS Alito

        For two-person marriage, in most US jurisdictions you can just fall back on established state laws and probate, if you like.

        • If the two persons are ok with established state laws, that is fine. But if they are not, prenuptial contracts are the way to go. These will become more important if marriages become legal for more than two persons at a time.

  • NS Alito

    Governments enabling and encouraging the sales of death machines to countries with abominable human rights records, for one.

  • ThaneOfDrones

    The use of “show more replies” to hide comments in a thread. How many times do I have to click to see the whole thread? Making it difficult for people to do so will result in more duplication of comments as it becomes a burden to see if someone already said that hilarious thing I thought I came up with myself.

    Plant rights. After all, plants are people too.

    • Max Doubt

      “The use of “show more replies” to hide comments in a thread.”

      Yep, it’s a piece of shit. The discussion on the Discus forum and elsewhere seems to show almost 100% disapproval by thousands of users. My guess is it will be made permanent, and that if any attempt is made by the developers to improve it, will be it even worse.

      • ThaneOfDrones

        Well! It seems to be turned off at present. I did two “Load more comments” at the bottom, but didn’t have to do any “show more replies”. I guess they shut it down until they can come up with something even worse to replace it with.

        I could do without the “Load more comments” but at least the button is highly visible and in a predicable location.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          I just went over to Friendly Atheist and am seeing “show more replies.” It must be controllable at the blog or post level.

          edit:
          In which case: Thank, Bob.

          edit:
          It seems to be back on now. Confusing.

        • Greg G.

          I had to hit “Show more replies” to the your comment that I am replying to.

          Edit: I just hit another “Show more replies” and it was to a new reply, so maybe they have changed that feature.

        • Michael Neville

          It’s fully functional. I’m reading this thread and I’ve had to hit “load more comments” several times already.

    • Anthrotheist

      Personally, I blame ever-shortening attention spans. People get used to comment areas like on YouTube, where you always have to open up replies to a comment, and they just stop opening up replies. It encourages clever one-off comments that are the only ones ever seen because most people seem to never even realize that there is any other way of sorting comboxes, and effectively kills anything remotely resembling a conversation.

      How do you make a reality-bubble even smaller?
      Narrow the perception of communication to a one-way listicle of the most popular tripe, creating an absurd environment where people only ever talk past each other, and never have to worry about responding to another human being (automating phone menus and customer support services also helps keep people from ever having to interact with strangers of course).

    • Jack the Sandwichmaker

      Bad enough searching through the comments for one subthread when you need to click the see more at the bottom of the page (though that’s forgiveable as a performance issue)

  • ThaneOfDrones

    Failure to accept genetic engineering.


    Chestnut champions quit to protest genetic engineering

    The American chestnut used to be the dominant tree species in the eastern US, until it was wiped out by an introduced blight. The couple in the article has been involved in a project to crossbreed remaining American chestnuts with Chinese chestnuts.

    A second blight resistance effort involves inserting one gene from wheat into the American chestnut. The gene is for the enzyme oxalate oxidase, which keeps the blight fungus at bay.

    The counter-arguments offered are 1) Fear of the unknown and 2) That using GMO to do a good thing will normalize the use of GMO, and it might then be used for less worthy goals. I.e. the slippery slope.

    I do not think the counter-arguments are very good.

    • Anthrotheist

      I think at least some of the pushback against genetic engineering comes from historical cases such as africanized honey bees. Ideally, researchers have learned from history and are much more careful about being thorough in their research before introducing altered or hybridized species into the wild; some concern, at least for me, is that there are often motivations besides care and responsibility at play (e.g., getting product to market to maximize profitability). It’s less a question of “Is it safe?” and more a question of “How sure can we be about how safe it is, and what is the motivation for doing it: progress or profit?”.

      • ThaneOfDrones

        But what is the alternative?
        1) Do without American chestnut trees. And American Elm trees. and …
        2) Crossbreeding with Chinese chestnut trees. While crossbreeding is old technology, the specific genes involved are new and involve some element of predictability. Not to mention it was the import of Chinese chestnuts that caused the problem in the first place.

        In the current example, the project is definitely not being done for profit, but the protesters are worried that normalisation of the technique will lead to it being done for profit in the future. That is a fascinating aspect of the Chestnut project. The usual objections you hear (eeeevil Monsanto, etc.) do not apply, which means that protesters should be reaching different conclusions if they bothered to think things through.

        • Anthrotheist

          Yeah, that is the problem with the absolute rejection of any idea or practice: you lose any sense of nuance and end up rabidly opposing things for the wrong reason (which is functionally identical to no reason at all). Then again, if the majority of human beings were better at considering nuance and detail, I doubt any area of Patheos would have much — if any — traffic.

        • Tangent: I’m happy to discuss the perils of GMOs, but first I want to get agreement that the goals of GMOs are usually pretty noble: plants that are drought resistant, can tolerate brackish water, need less fertilizer, rice that produces vitamin A, and so on.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          I think it varies a lot from case to case. In many of the existing cases, there is a clear intent to make money. E.g. sell the farmer a RoundUp®-resistant seed, and also sell them some RoundUp®. There may be additional goals, but the profit motive is undeniable.

          There are other cases where there is not a profit motive. The Chestnut initiative, golden rice, etc.

        • If Monsanto’s argument is, “Look how much money this makes for us!” then of course I’m not interested. But if Monsanto makes loads of cash while also helping farmers do good things (make money, improve health of farm land, reduce pesticide use, etc.) then that works for me.

      • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

        And gypsy moths…

      • ThaneOfDrones

        I think at least some of the pushback against genetic engineering comes from historical cases such as africanized honey bees.

        Uh… that didn’t involve any fancy modern DNA manipulation. That was just crossbreeding.

        • Anthrotheist

          You do understand that is most of the concern, right? If good old-fashioned crossbreeding, which has been done for millennia, can create something as invasive as killer bees, why would people readily accept that artificial “fancy modern DNA manipulation” would be any less dangerous?

          Whichever side you are on, the question seems to come down to, “Do you trust our current level of understanding of genetics enough (read: capacity to make accurate predictions) to believe that direct genetic manipulation won’t engender some sort of disaster?” If there is any doubt, the followup question is, “If you are not 100% sure that genetic engineering will be totally safe, is it worth taking the risk?”

          Personally, I tend to be risk-averse and try to err on the side of caution; thus my lukewarm perception of our current state of genetic engineering.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          In the example that started this tangent, the people involved were OK with, and involved with, a crossbreeding effort. But when presented with a more precise genetic engineering solution, they freaked.

        • ThaneOfDrones

          You do understand that is most of the concern, right?

          I’m not sure that I do. When I encounter such discussions online, there are usually many arguments thrown around, some of them quite bad. Usually at least one person steps in and says, “the real reason to oppose GE is X.” X is not always the same. The proposer of X usually fails to slap down his brethren ans sistren who put forward all those other reasons, some of which are quite bad.

        • Small point: the problem with killer bees (simply ordinary African honeybees) was the idiocy of putting them in the Americas and then letting them escape. Whoops.

          This has nothing to do with genetics or crossbreeding. This is simply another case of an invasive species inadvertently let loose.

        • Anthrotheist

          Maybe we understand the situation differently. It would be pleasing to me to believe that the problem is nothing more than a purebred strain of African honeybees being introduced to the Americas, causing a problem of an invasive species. My understanding is that the crossbreeding of honeybee species combined the higher aggressive/defensive behavior of African honeybees with the cold-climate tolerance of European honeybees to make a cold-tolerant aggressive/defensive honeybee strain.

          The most successful traits of one species (i.e., aggressive defensiveness) combined with the most successful traits of a genetically compatible species (i.e., cold-climate survival) combines overall to produce a perfect synergy of the two strengths, much to the chagrin of human inhabitants in moderate climate Americas. That is hardly a small point of criticism vis-a-vis genetic engineering.

    • I think I heard that there were a billion individual American chestnut trees before the blight.

      • ThaneOfDrones

        In two articles I read recently, one said 3 billion, the other said 4 billion.

        There are estimated approx 430 million surviving stumps that send up shoots, but they die back before they get too big.

  • Anthrotheist

    Poverty.

    If ever the idea becomes entrenched that having healthcare, nutritious food, clean water, and basic shelter are all human rights that every person deserves — as opposed to rescindable privileges that either have to be inherited at birth or continuously earned through personal labor — people will almost certainly look back on a world where one person has more personal net wealth than any of the poorest 38 countries in the world (of the 100 I could find listed, and he has more wealth than the lowest four on that list put together) while 15,000 children die ever day and most of those from preventable results of extreme poverty, surely people of that time will be bewildered and outraged.

  • Brian Curtis

    I’m hoping for an increased awareness of how economic power can be abused–how it’s as much a threat to freedom and happiness as abuses of political or religious authority. And a recognition that the current attitudes of “corporations are people, but with extra rights” and “money is speech” will be looked back on as laughably self-destructive.

  • quinsha

    I think that our descendants will look back in horror at the fact that today across the world unplanned pregnancies are the norm by a large margin.

    Even if you can’t afford a baby.
    Even if you don’t like babies.
    Even if you can’t take care of a baby properly.
    Even if you think that you already have enough children.
    Even if you don’t ever want to have a baby.

    No, when you have an unplanned pregnancy you are usually expected to have the baby and raise the baby. With minimal resources, and the time spent raising the child means that you never get better than minimal resources.

    • I predict that abortion will actually become more common for unplanned pregnancies.

      • eric

        That runs directly counter to the historical evidence, which indicates that the more equality, education, and access to health care that you give to women, the less unplanned pregnancies there are to begin with. And thus, less abortion.

        Conservatives, ironically, strenuously object to exactly those measures which are most effective at reducing the abortion rate. Why would they do that, you wonder? Well, because those measures that reduce abortion numbers are the ones that give women more power and control over when they get pregnant, and conservatives, ultimately, object to them having that control. They are not really (or at least, not merely) anti-abortion; they’re anti-women-controlling-their-own-reproduction.

        • E: That runs directly counter to the historical evidence, which indicates that the more equality, education, and access to health care that you give to women, the less unplanned pregnancies there are to begin with. And thus, less abortion.

          GW: I agree with you, but you are talking about a different thing than I am. The percentage of unplanned pregnancies among all pregnancies will go down, but the percentage of abortions among unplanned pregnancies will go up.

          E: Conservatives, ironically, strenuously object to exactly those measures which are most effective at reducing the abortion rate. Why would they do that, you wonder? Well, because those measures that reduce abortion numbers are the ones that give women more power and control over when they get pregnant, and conservatives, ultimately, object to them having that control. They are not really (or at least, not merely) anti-abortion; they’re anti-women-controlling-their-own-reproduction.

          GW: That is the common liberal and atheist interpretation. Although it probably is true for some cases, I doubt it is true for most of them. I think the most common motive for prolife advocates to oppose abortion is that they want to protect the life of the “unborn baby” which they believe to be a person. Controlling the behavior of women is just a means to this end.

        • Aram

          “I think the most common motive for prolife advocates to oppose abortion is that they want to protect the life of the “unborn baby” which they believe to be a person.”
          Nope. Read this:
          https://www.patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism/2012/10/how-i-lost-faith-in-the-pro-life-movement.html

        • Nope, I believe you are mistaken.

          Nope, I won’t read this linked article unless you first present a quote from the article which you believe conflicts with my assertion.

          You are behaving like the Christian who says “Go read the Bible to see you are wrong.”

        • Aram

          Are you seriously a psychologist? I find that hard to believe.
          Fine, don’t read it. Stay ignorant. It’s all sausages to me.

        • Ignorant Amos

          GW makes all sorts of unsupported rubbish assertions…and because he believes his own unsupported rubbish is fact, a severe case of the D-K’s kicks in…it’s fascinating stuff…this guy is being allowed to influence the prison population too.

        • Aram

          Yeah, I saw that with his prison psychologist thing. Definitely a scary thought. I also took a look at his ‘God wants YOU to be an Atheist’ book. Yep, it’s D-K all the way down.

        • Cynthia

          I have referred GW to journal articles and legal cases before. He doesn’t like to read long things.

          Again, frustrating and odd when somebody claims to be a rational skeptic.

        • Ignorant Amos

          He doesn’t read anything that might inform his position better….his illiterate and total ignorance in understanding of the John Chau incident is a prime example. He shoots from the hip first. Hence the reason why at this stage he is fuck all but a chew toy to be fucked with.

        • Cynthia

          Ah yes, his insistence that lack of immunity couldn’t possibly harm any member of a remote tribe if they were arrested and jailed in India was certainly interesting. I’ve been to India – after getting shots for Hep A/B and typhus and taking Dukoral, and being super-careful about everything we ate or drank. Person with no immunity to modern diseases plus Indian jail – what could possibly go wrong?

          Even more amazing was his insistence that you could put someone from a remote tribal with an unknown language on trial. Just find a translator, he said, ignoring all the articles saying that their language was unknown. I have enough trouble explaining the legal process to people who speak English.

        • Ignorant Amos

          And that’s considering there would be any kind of co-operation from the tribe in assisting investigators. Even if by some miracle the understanding of their lingo could be attained.

          GW is a complete irrational Coco.

        • Cynthia

          Exactly. You can’t even have a basic investigation without risking lives all around.

          But hey, the important thing to Gary is to make sure that someone is punished. Even if banishment to an island was literally a sentence that used to be handed out in criminal court (Australia, of course, was a former penal colony).

        • Cynthia

          Quick summary of the blog post: conservative Christian girl grows up fervany pro-life, as a kid is very moved by concern for babies. Gets totally shocked in college when she realizes that global research shows that laws don’t really prevent abortion, but good contraception does. Realized that even if the Pill or IUD occasionally prevented implantation, you would still end up with fewer zygotes dying than without contraception, because most zygotes naturally die. Realized that there was no rational reason for all the opposition to birth control that was prevalent in the pro-life movement and for the extreme emphasis on legally banning abortion.

          I do know of a couple of pro-life organizations abroad that are different. The founder of one of them was distressed by abortion, so he actually did some research and found out many of the women aborted due to financial pressures and many were already married with children. He decided to focus on providing a service that would provide monthly support and other assistance, and got social workers to pregnant women who were considering abortion for financial reasons to the organization. They rejected the idea of lobbying for legal changes or picketing abortion clinics, and realized that you protect fetuses by helping pregnant women.

        • C1: Quick summary of the blog post: conservative Christian girl grows up fervany pro-life, as a kid is very moved by concern for babies. Gets totally shocked in college when she realizes that global research shows that laws don’t really prevent abortion, but good contraception does. Realized that even if the Pill or IUD occasionally prevented implantation, you would still end up with fewer zygotes dying than without contraception, because most zygotes naturally die. Realized that there was no rational reason for all the opposition to birth control that was prevalent in the pro-life movement and for the extreme emphasis on legally banning abortion.

          GW1: Ok, thanks for the quick summary. What is “fervany” in your first sentence? If a man and a woman want to reduce the probability of a pregnancy, then they should use contraception. Sounds like the girl changed her mind in the right direction. But if a law against the unethical abortion of a fetal person were properly enforced, wouldn’t that be a good thing?

          C1: I do know of a couple of pro-life organizations abroad that are different. The founder of one of them was distressed by abortion, so he actually did some research and found out many of the women aborted due to financial pressures and many were already married with children. He decided to focus on providing a service that would provide monthly support and other assistance, and got social workers to pregnant women who were considering abortion for financial reasons to the organization. They rejected the idea of lobbying for legal changes or picketing abortion clinics, and realized that you protect fetuses by helping pregnant women.

          GW1: I am not “distressed by abortion.” Abortion is a valuable and ethical tool for particular situations, but not for others. I’d like to see more abortions of ZEEFs (not fetal persons) when the man and women agree that the pregnancy was unintended, unplanned, and unprepared for.

        • Cynthia

          There was a typo, it should have said fervently.

          Anyway, the issue was whether most pro-life advocates are motivated by a genuine belief that ZEFs are persons from the moment of conception whose life should be protected, or whether there is another agenda such as a desire to control women and their sexuality. It wasn’t whether YOU are distressed by abortion (it only seems to distress you in the first 2 trimesters if a pregnant woman aborts against the man’s wishes, in which case you believe that the state should compel her to stay pregnant as long as the pregnancy isn’t “likely” to kill her, or if the pregnant woman refuses to abort when the man doesn’t want the baby and then asks for child support after the baby is born).

          When the same people who call themselves pro-life consistently oppose the very things (like promoting effective contraception) that have been proven to reduce the number of abortions, and when they support positions (like opposing affordable health care for all) that actually increase the maternal and fetal rates of death, and when they focus all their attention on tactics that don’t reduce abortion but do harm women and very little attention on tactics that actually work to persuade pregnant women not to abort – well, it’s clear that there is something else going on.

        • C2: There was a typo, it should have said fervently.

          GW2: Ok. That makes sense.

          C2: Anyway, the issue was whether most pro-life advocates are motivated by a genuine belief that ZEFs are persons from the moment of conception whose life should be protected, or whether there is another agenda such as a desire to control women and their sexuality.

          GW2: I think the first motive is primary. They want to control women and their sexuality (secondary motive) in order to protect what they believe to be a person (primary motive). These two motives may be reversed in priority for some cases, but I think not in most.

          C2: It wasn’t whether YOU are distressed by abortion (it only seems to distress you in the first 2 trimesters if a pregnant woman aborts against the man’s wishes, in which case you believe that the state should compel her to stay pregnant as long as the pregnancy isn’t “likely” to kill her, or if the pregnant woman refuses to abort when the man doesn’t want the baby and then asks for child support after the baby is born).

          GW2: That’s a nearly accurate rendition of my position. I am distressed about unethical abortions. An unethical abortion would occur when the fetus is a person and the woman has a poor reason for seeking or getting the abortion. (As I’ve said before, I think there are only four good reasons for aborting a fetal person.) An unethical abortion would also occur when the woman wants to abort a ZEF and the man who co-created it wants to save it, with a few exceptions, of course. Yes, I believe that there should be laws against unethical abortions.

          C2: When the same people who call themselves pro-life consistently oppose the very things (like promoting effective contraception) that have been proven to reduce the number of abortions, and when they support positions (like opposing affordable health care for all) that actually increase the maternal and fetal rates of death, and when they focus all their attention on tactics that don’t reduce abortion but do harm women and very little attention on tactics that actually work to persuade pregnant women not to abort – well, it’s clear that there is something else going on.

          GW2: Yes, I agree with you, and that “something” is often flawed religious ideology.

        • Cynthia

          Ok, we agree on that last line. There is a lobby group called Campaign Life here which uses a lot of pro-life rhetoric and positions itself as having secular reasons for many of its positions – but when you look at it, it is just a Catholic mouthpiece.

        • Yes. The Abrahamic religions have a history of treating women as second class citizens.

          I am a secular humanist and an atheist. I believe in the rights of all persons.

        • Cynthia

          Of course. Like the right of a guy who knocks up a woman to have the state literally force her to put her life on the line if he would feel sad that she might have an early abortion. You were totally cool with a 1% risk of death, I recall, and didn’t seem to think that anything short of death was an excuse to abort if the guy objected.

          You were also totally championing the rights of brown people to claim asylum in Western countries when their lives are clearly in danger, right?

        • C1: Of course. Like the right of a guy who knocks up a woman to have the state literally force her to put her life on the line if he would feel sad that she might have an early abortion. You were totally cool with a 1% risk of death, I recall, and didn’t seem to think that anything short of death was an excuse to abort if the guy objected.

          GW1: Now you are presenting sarcastic propaganda which ignores the seriousness of these decisions.

          C1: You were also totally championing the rights of brown people to claim asylum in Western countries when their lives are clearly in danger, right?

          GW1: More sarcastic propaganda. Actually, all my ethical proposals are racially neutral.

        • Cynthia

          I have accurately restated your position in the first point, so it is in no way propaganda. I just used less words and summarized parts that show a wanton disregard for women’s lives. We are all quite aware of the troubling fact that you are totally serious about it.

          Your comments that the UK and US need to accept less immigrants, in the context of a story about denying asylum to someone without an unbiased consideration of what would be a clear case of someone with a well-founded fear of religious persecution, were not made in a racially neutral context. Ditto your comments approving denial of public sector employment to anyone wearing hijab in places where it has only been Christian majority groups who have wrongly abused political powers for religious purposes.

        • C2: I have accurately restated your position in the first point, so it is in no way propaganda.

          GW2: No, Cynthia, you did not accurately restate my position. Let’s examine it closely: You said “Like the right of a guy who knocks up a woman…” That is inaccurate and pejorative language. The man and the woman agree to and then engage in sexual intercourse which results in a ZEEF inside the woman. Then you said “…to have the state literally force her to put her life on the line if he would feel sad that she might have an early abortion.” That is also inaccurate and pejorative language. The chances of the woman dying by continuing a pregnancy is very low, I think it was .002%, and it is no more higher when the man objects to an abortion than if he does not. Also, “feeling sad” is your way of minimizing the loss of the man and it is totally out of line. Then you said “You were totally cool with a 1% risk of death, I recall, and didn’t seem to think that anything short of death was an excuse to abort if the guy objected.” That is a total distortion. I am not “totally cool” with any risk of death. Furthermore, I said that I thought there would have to be at least a 40% risk of death during the pregnancy to warrant an immediate abortion against the decision of the man. Less than that, other less intrusive measures should be tried to lower danger to the woman. So you see, your restatement was certainly propaganda, and I shouldn’t have needed to show you why. It is obvious. Such a propagandistic statement is out of character for you.

          C2: I just used less words and summarized parts that show a wanton disregard for women’s lives. We are all quite aware of the troubling fact that you are totally serious about it.

          GW2: You used not only less words, you distorted my position. Also, it is just an opinion of yours that my position shows “a wanton disregard for women’s lives.” That’s your reaction to my position which I and others do not share.

          C2: Your comments that the UK and US need to accept less immigrants, in the context of a story about denying asylum to someone without an unbiased consideration of what would be a clear case of someone with a well-founded fear of religious persecution, were not made in a racially neutral context.

          GW2: That doesn’t matter. My proposal treats all persons the same regardless of their race and religion.

          C2: Ditto your comments approving denial of public sector employment to anyone wearing hijab in places where it has only been Christian majority groups who have wrongly abused political powers for religious purposes.

          GW2: That doesn’t matter either. Again, my proposal treats all persons the same regardless of their race or religion. Nobody should be allowed to walk around in public with their face covered, except for a good reason related to medical condition or the weather. My proposal says nothing about covering the top/back of the head or the rest of the body. I have a major publication of an article coming out on this topic in June. I am willing to give you the citation when it comes out.

        • -MARK-

          Except pregnant women.

        • Including pregnant women and their male partners.

        • Susan

          Including pregnant women and their male partners.

          You are proposing that we deny rights to women because at one time, a male partner ejaculated. And suggesting that her body serve his desires. That can be compared to both slavery and rape.

          You are not proposing equal rights. You are claiming that a male has “property rights” because of an ejaculation.

          It is insane.

        • GW: Including pregnant women and their male partners.

          S: You are proposing that we deny rights to women because at one time, a male partner ejaculated. And suggesting that her body serve his desires. That can be compared to both slavery and rape.

          GW: You are distorting my position. I am acknowledging the rights of all women, and men, and all persons. But what I am proposing is that in rare and specific circumstances the woman’s right to bodily autonomy should be superceded by the property rights of the male partner so that the ZEEF will become a person, assuming the male partner wants to become the caretaking father. The couple should reach an agreement on the disposition of any ZEEF which might result before they have intercourse. If they don’t reach such agreement, then they shouldn’t have intercourse.

          S: You are not proposing equal rights.

          GW: Of course I am. The woman has the same rights as the man – right to life, to bodily autonomy, to property, etc. You just don’t understand the concepts of conflict in rights, conflict resolution, or superceding rights, or you pretend not to understand.

          S: You are claiming that a male has “property rights” because of an ejaculation.

          GW: No. I am claiming that the male has a property right with respect to the ZEEF because he helped to CREATE it. The woman consented to the man ejaculating inside her. This event led to the creation of the ZEEF which is jointly owned property of the man and the woman.

          S: It is insane.

          GW: No. It is rational, clever, and ethical. So far, you have offered no persuasive objection.

        • Cynthia

          So, excluding pregnant women who disagree with their male partners. Also excluding any child born to a man who wants to walk away from all responsibilities.

        • C: So, excluding pregnant women who disagree with their male partners.

          GW: No, not at all. They are included too! You are just failing to recognize the problem of conflict of rights and the solution of superceding rights, as you have done previously. When the male partner disagrees with the female partner and wants her to get an abortion, his right to property is superceded by both the female’s right to property and her right to bodily autonomy. So, you really must look at the specific situation to understand supeceding rights.

          C: Also excluding any child born to a man who wants to walk away from all responsibilities.

          GW: The child is not “born to a man.” The decision about disposition of the ZEEF property should be made long before the fetus becomes a person. In fact, it should be made even before the couple has sexual intercourse. Decisions should be deliberate, transparent, and early.

        • Cynthia

          No, Gary. YOU need to correct your false understanding of basic legal principles, and also explain precisely how your proposals are ethical by referring to how you rank principles and how those principles logically apply to a scenario in real life.

          If a woman wants an early abortion and the man objects, what is the conflict? We both agree that the embryo or early-stage fetus has no independent “personhood” rights that can be enforced against the pregnant woman. You are claiming that the man is invested in the ZEF due to the fact that his DNA contributed to it. There is of course no dollar value on a ZEF inside a pregnant woman, but you recognize that the man may have a strong emotional reaction to a termination against his wishes. On the other hand, a pregnant woman may have a strong emotional reaction to being compelled to continue a pregnancy. IN ADDITION, any pregnancy and birth will also involve considerable physical burdens, significant pain, risk of physical injury and even risk of death. The potential harm, both physical and emotional, to the woman of continuing the pregnancy against her will outweighs his emotional distress over an abortion.

          For the second point, you can substitute “fathered by” if you want to be pedantic.

          Again, ideally people will talk about avoiding conception if they don’t want kids and will actively take steps to do so. The purpose of such discussion isn’t to weasel out of future responsibility, it is to actually avoid creating children that they don’t want. Once a child is born, the intentions of the parents mean nothing. The child exists and has needs. Your proposal deprives children of support and increases the number of women and children living in poverty. Just heard the Parliamentary Secretary to the Canadian Minister of Justice talk about the feminization of poverty and the role of child support in reducing it at our recent Family Law Summit. You have not shown any ethical reason to value a grown man capable of working over a child who is in need of support.

        • C5: No, Gary. YOU need to correct your false understanding of basic legal principles, and also explain precisely how your proposals are ethical by referring to how you rank principles and how those principles logically apply to a scenario in real life.

          GW5: I disagree with you on your first assessment of my need, and agree with you on the latter two. I don’t require much understanding of current “basic legal principles” since I am proposing new ethics and law. While knowing how the law works in Canada may be interesting, it is not necessary for my efforts here. I’ve already covered the latter two needs several times in discussion with you, but we can review them here. In my system the right to life has priority over all other rights. When other rights come into conflict it is necessary to examine the situation to decide which right/s takes priority and to use the “harm principle.” More to follow.

          C5: If a woman wants an early abortion and the man objects, what is the conflict?

          GW5: I can’t believe that you are asking this question! There is a conflict in the wants, interests, values, and rights of the woman and the man.

          C5: We both agree that the embryo or early-stage fetus has no independent “personhood” rights that can be enforced against the pregnant woman.

          GW5: Yes, we agree on that point. The fetus acquires rights when it becomes a person when it acquires consciousness at about 24 weeks. We have debated that issue a great deal already, and we can set it aside for now.

          C5: You are claiming that the man is invested in the ZEF due to the fact that his DNA contributed to it.

          GW5: “ZEF” is a good term, but not for this discussion. To improve clarity and avoid confusion I am going to use “ZEEF” defined this way: A ZEEF is a human Zygote, Embryo, or Early Fetus living inside a woman. A ZEEF is not a person because it has not yet acquired the capacity for consciousness, which occurs at approximately 24 weeks post conception. When this new capacity is added the fetus becomes a “fetal person.”

          GW5: Back to your point: The man is the co-owner of the ZEEF along with the woman. He may be psychologically “invested” in the ZEEF, and we are assuming that he is in the current example.

          C5: There is of course no dollar value on a ZEF inside a pregnant woman, but you recognize that the man may have a strong emotional reaction to a termination against his wishes.

          GW5: Because the man is psychologically invested in the ZEEF, he will be very distressed by the killing of it, whether the killing is by the woman in conjunction with a doctor or by a malicious or negligent stranger. Anything of value to anyone can be potentially expressed in dollars.

          C5: On the other hand, a pregnant woman may have a strong emotional reaction to being compelled to continue a pregnancy. IN ADDITION, any pregnancy and birth will also involve considerable physical burdens, significant pain, risk of physical injury and even risk of death.

          GW5: We have already agreed on these points.

          C5: The potential harm, both physical and emotional, to the woman of continuing the pregnancy against her will outweighs his emotional distress over an abortion.

          GW5: We don’t agree on this point, and we probably never will. In the example we are reviewing, the total harm to the man (and others) if the woman gets an abortion will exceed the total harm to the woman (and others) if the woman continues the pregnancy to term. I have known several people who have lost ZEEFs to death, one way or another, where this was not what they wanted. It is a horrible experience, and the trauma extends for a long time. I think you know this.

          C5: For the second point, you can substitute “fathered by” if you want to be pedantic.

          GW5: I don’t know what you mean by this, I doubt it is important at this time, and so I will set it aside.

          C5: Again, ideally people will talk about avoiding conception if they don’t want kids and will actively take steps to do so.

          GW5: This is not just an ideal; this is a proposal for universal application! The man and woman should talk and make very important decisions BEFORE intercourse. In sex education classes, this should always be taught. You have been minimizing the importance of this decision making and planning.

          C5: The purpose of such discussion isn’t to weasel out of future responsibility, it is to actually avoid creating children that they don’t want.

          GW5: There you go again – using propaganda language. “Weasel”? Really? There are many purposes of such discussion, and among them are: 1) Give explicit consent for intercourse. 2) Decide on the use of contraception. 3) Decide on the disposition of the ZEEF if one happens to be created. And 4) Decide on the caretaker/s for a baby if one happens to be produced. These decisions should be considered seriously, not cavalierly.

          C5: Once a child is born, the intentions of the parents mean nothing. The child exists and has needs.

          GW5: Once a child is born, the PRIOR DECISIONS of the parents mean a great deal! Yes, the child exists and has needs. Who has agreed to be the caretaker? If the couple cannot come to agreement on a future caretaker, then they shouldn’t have intercourse! If you disagree, explain and defend your position.

          C5: Your proposal deprives children of support and increases the number of women and children living in poverty.

          GW5: No, Cynthia, my proposal (when taken as a whole) does just the OPPOSITE – it increases the support of children and decreases the number of women and children living in poverty. You are reaching the wrong conclusion about it because you are not taking into account the deliberate decision making which would occur prior to intercourse or upon discovery of pregnancy and you are focusing on ONLY ONE of the four possible outcomes on the decisions about the outcome of the ZEEF.

          C5: Just heard the Parliamentary Secretary to the Canadian Minister of Justice talk about the feminization of poverty and the role of child support in reducing it at our recent Family Law Summit.

          GW5: You should have presented my proposal at the Summit to help them solve the problems.

          C5: You have not shown any ethical reason to value a grown man capable of working over a child who is in need of support.

          GW5: False dichotomy. This is a complex and serious issue, and making statements like that shows superficial thinking.

        • Cynthia

          I’m not denying the potential pain of pregnancy loss. As you know, I’ve had 3 and the first was particularly hard, leading to a year-long grief/depression.

          Still, I never thought that this would give me any right to compel someone else to stay pregnant against her will. Especially since I discovered that my first pregnancy loss could have killed me.

          You wrote that the state should force a woman to continue an early pregnancy against her will if the man is opposed to the abortion and willing to care for any resulting baby, even if she faces a 1% risk of death. That is not a position which values human life above all. It is a position which says that women’s lives matter less than men’s feelings. A 1% risk of death, for a person who is fairly young and healthy as most pregnant women are, is actually really high. Higher than the risk of being killed at Stoneman Douglas school if you were a student there the day of the Parkland shooting. Higher than the risk of dying during Hurricane Katrina if you couldn’t evacuate.

        • C6: I’m not denying the potential pain of pregnancy loss. As you know, I’ve had 3 and the first was particularly hard, leading to a year-long grief/depression.

          GW6: I’m pleased you are not denying and sorry you had to go through that. Now, just imagine the additional pain if another person was the cause of your loss – somebody killed your ZEEF against your will! Imagine that for just a moment.

          C6: Still, I never thought that this would give me any right to compel someone else to stay pregnant against her will.

          GW6: Well, now is a very good time to start thinking about it. It is wrong for a person to kill a ZEEF which is co-owned by another person who intends to be the caretaker of the resulting baby. Serious harm would be done by the one who kills.

          C6: Especially since I discovered that my first pregnancy loss could have killed me.

          GW6: I have an exception for special cases where there is significant danger of loss of life for the host woman, as you know. Let’s stick right now to the case where the risk of death is .002 during the course of a complete pregnancy.

          C6: You wrote that the state should force a woman to continue an early pregnancy against her will if the man is opposed to the abortion and willing to care for any resulting baby, even if she faces a 1% risk of death.

          GW6: Yes, that is correct.

          C6: That is not a position which values human life above all.

          GW6: This is a straw man since I did not say that I “value human life above all.” I said the right to life should take priority over the other human rights in a conflict of rights’ situation.

          C6: It is a position which says that women’s lives matter less than men’s feelings.

          GW6: It doesn’t say that at all. The woman’s life is not at significant risk in the example you are presenting here. Also, you are misrepresenting the conflict of rights. On the woman’s side is the right to bodily autonomy and the right to property, while on the man’s side is the right to property and the right to parenthood.

          C6: A 1% risk of death, for a person who is fairly young and healthy as most pregnant women are, is actually really high.

          GW6: No, it’s not “actually really high.” The woman very probably will NOT die if the pregnancy is continued, but the ZEEF will CERTAINLY die if the abortion is conducted. You are comparing a molehill to a mountain.

          C6: Higher than the risk of being killed at Stoneman Douglas school if you were a student there the day of the Parkland shooting. Higher than the risk of dying during Hurricane Katrina if you couldn’t evacuate.

          GW6: I don’t see how either is relevant. The state can have some control over whether the woman kills or retains the ZEEF. The state can have very little control over whether a crazy person shoots up a school or a hurricane strikes. Your analogies are poor here.

        • Cynthia

          Your exception wouldn’t have covered my situation. I had no idea that the pregnancy was dangerous until fetal demise was diagnosed. That has been my point all along – pregnancy is inherently risky and not all risks can be predicted in advance.

          Your use of all caps doesn’t change the fact that you wouldn’t have any objection at all to an early abortion if the man agreed with it too. So it’s not really about KILLING, it is about his feelings. For the sake of his feelings, you are willing to have the state force her to risk her health and life.

        • C7: Your exception wouldn’t have covered my situation. I had no idea that the pregnancy was dangerous until fetal demise was diagnosed. That has been my point all along – pregnancy is inherently risky and not all risks can be predicted in advance.

          GW7: You are mistaken about this. My exception would almost certainly have covered your situation. In the course of pregnancy if it is judged that the host woman would probably die if the pregnancy is continued, then her right to life would supercede the man’s rights in these circumstances, and the abortion would be performed. Although the starting probability of death in pregnancy is very low, it can rise during the pregnancy. This must be carefully monitored by licensed expert physicians.

          C7: Your use of all caps doesn’t change the fact that you wouldn’t have any objection at all to an early abortion if the man agreed with it too.

          GW7: All caps is for emphasis. I want readers to pay particular attention to key words. There is no conflict if the man and the woman agree to an abortion.

          C7: So it’s not really about KILLING, it is about his feelings.

          GW7: It’s really about a conflict in rights’ situation where the man suffers a tremendous loss because the woman killed a ZEEF or could do so.

          C7: For the sake of his feelings, you are willing to have the state force her to risk her health and life.

          GW7: That is a prejudicial way of framing it. This is better: For the sake of protecting the man’s rights in a conflict of rights’ situation and for the sake of minimizing overall harm, I find it ethically obligatory for the state to force the woman to continue the pregnancy, as long as the risk of death or significant injury to the woman does not rise to “likely.” You keep ignoring the fact that if an abortion is done early, the risk of death to the ZEEF is 100%.

        • Cynthia

          No, it wouldn’t have covered my situation. I had what is known medically as a “missed abortion”, which means that the fetus had died 7 weeks before but there were no symptoms. Retaining a dead fetus for 6 weeks or more increases the risk of DIC, a coagulation disorder that first causes massive amounts of blood clots and then uncontrolled bleeding, and which can be fatal. I ended up going to the ER for a D&C.

          Up until the missed abortion was discovered, I had no idea that it wasn’t a healthy pregnancy – but it was actually putting my life at risk. Pregnancy complications can be like that. By the time the risk is clearly known, you can be facing a medical emergency that is not always possible to reverse. Any pregnancy can be potentially life-threatening, which is why it is unethical to legally compel someone to carry a pregnancy to term against their will.

        • C8: No, it wouldn’t have covered my situation. I had what is known medically as a “missed abortion”, which means that the fetus had died 7 weeks before but there were no symptoms. Retaining a dead fetus for 6 weeks or more increases the risk of DIC, a coagulation disorder that first causes massive amounts of blood clots and then uncontrolled bleeding, and which can be fatal. I ended up going to the ER for a D&C.

          GW8: Yes, it would have covered your situation, but not in the way I described last post. Under my proposal the dead fetus would be removed as soon as medically practical and safe. The man would have no right to block the removal. The property of the man and the woman would be dead and have no value to either. Moot point.

          C8: Up until the missed abortion was discovered, I had no idea that it wasn’t a healthy pregnancy – but it was actually putting my life at risk. Pregnancy complications can be like that. By the time the risk is clearly known, you can be facing a medical emergency that is not always possible to reverse.

          GW8: Once the fetus is discovered to be dead, there is no conflict of rights, interests, or values. And so, your particular case is not a good example for challenging my proposal.

          C8: Any pregnancy can be potentially life-threatening, which is why it is unethical to legally compel someone to carry a pregnancy to term against their will.

          GW8: This is a non sequitur. Every pregnancy and every abortion is potentially life-threatening, but this in no way implies that it is unethical to compel a woman to carry a pregnancy to term under some circumstances. Again, it depends greatly on the degree of risk, as we have discussed.

        • Cynthia

          Once the problem was diagnosed, I had the emergency surgery. I was lucky – the surgery was done prior to a coagulation disorder developing. If the disorder had developed before the surgery, it might have been too late and I could have died. When you are carrying a dead fetus for that long, the risks of developing that disorder are significant. Since there had been a fetal heart beat detected by ultrasound at 8 weeks and I had measured normally at 12 weeks, the lack of Doppler heart beat wasn’t a concern and there was no reason to assume that there was a problem. I was a bit more alert to the possibility in subsequent pregnancies, so my 3rd miscarriage was diagnosed at a point where I had been carrying a dead fetus for only 3.5 weeks. If it hadn’t been for my history, both the OB and I wouldn’t have noticed anything wrong since there was no bleeding.

          My point was that my life was endangered BEFORE it was diagnosed, and that it isn’t always obvious which pregnancies are dangerous. Continuing to term and giving birth means that the risk of death is 14X higher than having a legal abortion. Having the state compel women to risk their lives is unethical.

        • C9: Once the problem was diagnosed, I had the emergency surgery. I was lucky – the surgery was done prior to a coagulation disorder developing. If the disorder had developed before the surgery, it might have been too late and I could have died. When you are carrying a dead fetus for that long, the risks of developing that disorder are significant. Since there had been a fetal heart beat detected by ultrasound at 8 weeks and I had measured normally at 12 weeks, the lack of Doppler heart beat wasn’t a concern and there was no reason to assume that there was a problem.

          GW9: I am sorry that you had to go through all that and am pleased that you survived it.

          C9: I was a bit more alert to the possibility in subsequent pregnancies, so my 3rd miscarriage was diagnosed at a point where I had been carrying a dead fetus for only 3.5 weeks. If it hadn’t been for my history, both the OB and I wouldn’t have noticed anything wrong since there was no bleeding.

          GW9: Your previous difficulty made you more alert to problems and you educated yourself more so that you could take proper action in future circumstances.

          C9: My point was that my life was endangered BEFORE it was diagnosed, and that it isn’t always obvious which pregnancies are dangerous.

          GW9: Our lives are always in danger, and some things we do are more dangerous than other things. We agree that the risk of loss of life is many times greater for continuing a pregnancy to term than for getting an abortion. You should also agree that the risk of death to the ZEEF is 100% when an abortion occurs early in pregnancy

          C9: Continuing to term and giving birth means that the risk of death is 14X higher than having a legal abortion.

          GW9: I think it is much higher than that. I read that abstract. Not included was the rate of deaths of host women from whom live neonates were not delivered. That should be taken into account to reach a better comparison.

          C9: Having the state compel women to risk their lives is unethical.

          GW9: It could be, and it depends on the level of risk and the circumstances, but it would be ethical under my proposal. And I have explained why.

        • Cynthia

          You have no objection to the death of a “ZEEF” if the man doesn’t want it, so that isn’t really a consideration. We agree that an embryo or early stage fetus has no independent rights that supersede the right of the pregnant woman to abort. Your perception of a conflict of rights is based upon the feelings of the man. To you, his feelings justify forcing a woman to undergo considerable physical strain, risk to health and risk to life, in addition to ignoring her feelings.

        • C10: You have no objection to the death of a “ZEEF” if the man doesn’t want it, so that isn’t really a consideration.

          GW10: That is simply false. One of the four rights’ conflicts which I have described is when the man wants an abortion of the ZEEF and the woman wants to save it. This conflict should be resolved in favor of the woman. We’ve been over this several times.

          C10: We agree that an embryo or early stage fetus has no independent rights that supersede the right of the pregnant woman to abort.

          GW10: Of course it doesn’t. It isn’t a person yet!

          C10: Your perception of a conflict of rights is based upon the feelings of the man. To you, his feelings justify forcing a woman to undergo considerable physical strain, risk to health and risk to life, in addition to ignoring her feelings.

          GW10: You have framed the problem poorly – in a biased way. Also, you are too focused on feelings instead of rights. Here we are discussing a conflict of the man’s right to property and his right to parenthood vs. the woman’s right to property and her right to bodily autonomy. To resolve a conflict like this you must compare harm if the rights of either party are superceded. In this particular instance the harm to the man would be greater, and so the state must favor his position. The ethical outcome for other kinds of situations is different.

        • Cynthia

          How do you conclude that the harm to the man is greater? His life isn’t on the line, nor is his physical health.

        • C11: How do you conclude that the harm to the man is greater?

          GW11: Cynthia, oh Cynthia, we’ve been over that issue in excruciating detail before! If I explain it to you again, you still aren’t going to agree. I can only hope that you can somehow empathize with the man who would not only lose his share of the ZEEF but also lose his opportunity to become a caretaking father at that point in his life. Take just a moment to recall your pain when you lost your fetuses on some occasions and then your joy when you successfully became a caretaking mother. Connect those experiences to the man’s situation which we have been discussing. I know it may be difficult, but try to put yourself in his shoes.

          C11: His life isn’t on the line, nor is his physical health.

          GW11: Our lives and physical health are ALWAYS on the line. The man’s PTSD might contribute to his death or impairment of his physical health. He might develop a problem with alcohol or other drugs. He might commit suicide. The PTSD could exacerbate already existing medical problems.

          GW11: Let’s ask 5000 women this question:
          “In which of the following situations would harm to you be the greater, when projected over the course of your life?
          A. Being forced to knowingly complete a pregnancy for seven months with all the usual attendant discomforts, inconveniences, extra activities, and risks.
          B. Experiencing the death of the fetus inside you which you intended to keep, when that fetus is killed by another person against your will.”

        • Cynthia

          As someone who has experienced pregnancy losses and healthy pregnancies – I still say that forced gestation is the greater harm.

          The emotional or psychological harms to the man can also occur to the woman who is forced to gestate, to an equal or greater extent. Post-partum depression or even psychosis isn’t exactly unknown.

        • C12: As someone who has experienced pregnancy losses and healthy pregnancies – I still say that forced gestation is the greater harm.

          GW12: Your experiences are similar to but not the same as experiences in the conditions we are comparing. Your experiences are still somewhat useful for understanding. You believe that a forced pregnancy would entail greater harm, overall, than a forced loss of a ZEEF. I disagree. I’ve tried many ways to get you to view this differently, but none has worked. I don’t think we will come to agreement on this point.

          C12: The emotional or psychological harms to the man can also occur to the woman who is forced to gestate, to an equal or greater extent.

          GW12: “Can also occur” is accurate. However, for rational comparison we should consider typical or most cases. What makes the man’s situation so horrible is that it involves somebody else knowingly causing the death of a living human organism to which the man is attached and upon which he is pinning his hopes of fatherhood. The loss of the ZEEF is permanent. It cannot be resurrected. This is worse than a forced pregnancy, IMO.

          C12: Post-partum depression or even psychosis isn’t exactly unknown.

          GW12: We can and should consider extreme reactions in either condition, but we should focus on typical or most cases.

          GW12: Here is a new thought experiment for you to ponder:
          The Man and Surrogate Scenario:
          For years a man has wanted to be a single father of a child but has not wanted to be married. He finds a clinic which promises to make his wishes come true. Through the clinic he hires a surrogate to provide an egg for conception and also “natural incubation services.” He will be given full custody over any newborn. The man agrees to submit a sperm sample. The surrogate woman agrees to insemination, becoming pregnant, and sustaining any human organism for full term. A contract is signed. The surrogate becomes pregnant and soon after she experiences typical uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms and requests an abortion. The man is very anxious and angry about this change in mind by the surrogate. The man files suit to prevent the abortion. What is the ethical resolution? A judge should rule that the surrogate must continue her pregnancy and make a good faith effort to complete the contract, as long as no significant dangers to the life and health of the surrogate occur. The judge should rule that the surrogate be closely monitored and even confined if necessary to prevent her from getting an illegal abortion or otherwise harming the fetus.

        • Cynthia

          We aren’t going to agree on this.

          I had considered your surrogate scenario – a cousin had twins via a surrogate. As painful as a termination might be for the intended parent, I still believe that it would be unethical for the state to compel a surrogate to continue the pregnancy.

          I’m not minimizing feelings of loss. As you know, I have first hand experience.

          What my experience also taught me, though, was that not all feelings of pain can justify any actions. When I had my first loss, it was painful for me to see pregnant women or babies. It was painful to hear my mom talk about a party for a friend’s new grandson. It was painful for me to hear about other women having abortions. I had to tell myself, so what? I had no right to stop the rest of the world. I had no right to someone else’s baby. I could and did give myself a small break, but I had to cope and try not to become a monster.

        • C13: We aren’t going to agree on this.

          GW13: Yep, I don’t think we are.

          C13: I had considered your surrogate scenario – a cousin had twins via a surrogate. As painful as a termination might be for the intended parent, I still believe that it would be unethical for the state to compel a surrogate to continue the pregnancy.

          GW13: I totally disagree with you. The surrogate gave informed consent and signed a contract. She knew that there would be unpleasant symptoms. She should not be allowed to kill the ZEEF which the man helped to create and which he totally owns.

          C13: I’m not minimizing feelings of loss. As you know, I have first hand experience.

          GW13: I hope you do not. Your ZEEFs were not killed by another person. That is one difference.

          C13: What my experience also taught me, though, was that not all feelings of pain can justify any actions.

          GW13: Well of course, we agree on that point. “All” and “any” are as broad as you can get.

          C13: When I had my first loss, it was painful for me to see pregnant women or babies. It was painful to hear my mom talk about a party for a friend’s new grandson. It was painful for me to hear about other women having abortions. I had to tell myself, so what? I had no right to stop the rest of the world. I had no right to someone else’s baby. I could and did give myself a small break, but I had to cope and try not to become a monster.

          GW13: You went through a horrible experience which is similar to what a man would go through in the situation we are discussing.

          GW13: Here is a new thought experiment for you to ponder, based on the survey question I presented:
          God’s Forced Choice:
          Assume that God exists and meets with you (a woman who has successfully given birth to at least one child). God tells you that he has bad news and good news for you. The bad news is that one of two unpleasant scenarios will occur to you. The good news is that you may pick the one that you will have. If you refuse to choose one, then God will just flip a coin to determine the outcome. Here are your two choices:
          A. After you discover that you are pregnant you will be forced by another person to complete that pregnancy for seven months with all the usual attendant discomforts, inconveniences, extra responsibilities, and risks, when you had intended from the start to abort the fetus.
          B. After you discover that you are pregnant at some point you will experience the death of the fetus inside you when you had already bonded with it and planned to keep it, birth it, and raise it as your child, when that fetus was actually killed by another person.
          Make your choice and explain your pick.

        • Cynthia

          Your scenario makes no sense. If you get a choice, then it isn’t a forced gestation.

          Which scenario would I find more traumatic, assuming no weird supernatural choices? Between having a surrogate abort my child or being compelled to gestate against my will? Forced gestation would be worse.

        • All my scenarios make sense. Most of them could happen, but a few of them are science fiction. They are designed to resemble real life moral dilemmas.

          I think you are confusing the different thought experiments or scenarios. I give them all a name. When you respond to one, please designate it by its name and then clearly give your opinions about it.

        • Kodie

          which the man helped to create and which he totally owns.

          ‘scuse me???? You are an enslaver!

        • Ignorant Amos

          The feckin’ eejit doesn’t seem to grasp that the woman isn’t obliged to tell the man that she is pregnant, let alone ask for permission to abort. Nor does the medic’s performing the abortion need his permission, or are required to even ask about his views.

          He totally owns fuck all.

        • Cynthia

          Also, a termination doesn’t mean that his hopes of fatherhood end. It just means that he won’t become a father to a potential child that could have resulted from this particular “ZEEF”. It doesn’t affect his ability to father future children.

          OTOH, pregnancy and childbirth can affect future childbearing. 1/3 of all births occur via c-section, and each c-section exponentially increases the risk of uterine rupture in the next pregnancy. My 3rd c-section was traumatic and ended any thoughts of a 4th child.

          As a retired psychologist, I assume you can provide evidence to back up any claim that the psychological risks of termination to the man are greater than the psychological risks to the woman of being forced to continue the pregnancy. So, please do so.

          Post-partum depression is extremely common – around 10 – 15% of new moms will develop major post-partum depression. Stress level during pregnancy and lack of support after the birth are factors that increase the risk. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3118237/

          I did a PubMed search and the only thing I found was extremely dated (1982). Some emotional reactions were found but it was very rare that it manifested as depression or another mood disorder. Unless you have actual data that shows otherwise, I would conclude that the psychological risks to continuing the pregnancy to the woman equal or outweigh the psychological risks of her aborting the pregnancy to the man. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6543986

        • C14: Also, a termination doesn’t mean that his hopes of fatherhood end. It just means that he won’t become a father to a potential child that could have resulted from this particular “ZEEF”. It doesn’t affect his ability to father future children.

          GW14: Yes, for typical or most cases, you are correct. For an atypical case, the man might avoid any more attempts out of fear of a similar outcome. On the other side, a forced pregnancy doesn’t mean that all pregnancies in the future will be forced.

          C14: OTOH, pregnancy and childbirth can affect future childbearing. 1/3 of all births occur via c-section, and each c-section exponentially increases the risk of uterine rupture in the next pregnancy. My 3rd c-section was traumatic and ended any thoughts of a 4th child.

          GW14: Yes, that could occur, but again we should compare typical or most cases in weighing the harm in the two scenarios.

          C14: As a retired psychologist, I assume you can provide evidence to back up any claim that the psychological risks of termination to the man are greater than the psychological risks to the woman of being forced to continue the pregnancy. So, please do so.

          GW14: I don’t think there have been any empirical studies conducted on this, so I am unable to give you the evidence you’ve requested. And of course, you too are unable to provide the evidence in support of the converse, which I am now requesting. My judgement is based on all my entire life experience, as is yours.

          C14: Post-partum depression is extremely common – around 10 – 15% of new moms will develop major post-partum depression. Stress level during pregnancy and lack of support after the birth are factors that increase the risk. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.go

          GW14: You are cherry picking cases outside “typical or most.” Of course in response, I have done the same and could continue doing so, but I don’t think cherry picking is helpful here.

          C14: I did a PubMed search and the only thing I found was extremely dated (1982). Some emotional reactions were found but it was very rare that it manifested as depression or another mood disorder.

          GW14: This is an old limited study which does not make the comparison we are considering.

          C14: Unless you have actual data that shows otherwise, I would conclude that the psychological risks to continuing the pregnancy to the woman equal or outweigh the psychological risks of her aborting the pregnancy to the man. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.go

          G14: Unless you have actual data that show otherwise, I conclude that the overall harm to the woman and her associates in the forced pregnancy scenario is outweighed by the overall harm to the man and his associates in the killed ZEEF scenario. Your cited 1982/1983 study is not helpful in answering the question. Good relevant research remains to be done.

        • Cynthia

          Your conclusions are not supported by evidence so we can reject them.

          What’s with the focus on “typical”?? Honestly, the last conversation I had with that particular focus and massive objection to “exceptions” was with Ken Alexander, husband of notorious Christian blogger Lori Alexander. Ken had a problem with me or anyone else bringing up abuse as a reason that wifely obedience and submission, or corporal punishment of children, might not be a good idea. You are sounding strangely like him. Anyway, 10-15% of moms developing post-partum depression is significant. So is a c-section rate of around 30%. Sorry if math is so hard for you that you can only deal with “most” or “none”. At some point, you must have known enough stats to get your license so you can surely deal with figures between 0 and 50%.

        • C15: Your conclusions are not supported by evidence so we can reject them.

          GW15: My conclusions are based on evidence which is as good or better than the evidence you are using to support your opposite conclusions. So we can tentatively accept my conclusions since they are better reasoned.

          C15: What’s with the focus on “typical”??

          GW15: You should not reason to ethical proposals based on atypical cases. You know that.

          C15: Honestly, the last conversation I had with that particular focus and massive objection to “exceptions” was with Ken Alexander, husband of notorious Christian blogger Lori Alexander. Ken had a problem with me or anyone else bringing up abuse as a reason that wifely obedience and submission, or corporal punishment of children, might not be a good idea. You are sounding strangely like him.

          GW15: Snarky, ad hominem, irrelevant comment. Atypical for you.

          C15: Anyway, 10-15% of moms developing post-partum depression is significant. So is a c-section rate of around 30%.

          GW15: You are probably correct. I have no reason to doubt your stats here.

          C15: Sorry if math is so hard for you that you can only deal with “most” or “none”. At some point, you must have known enough stats to get your license so you can surely deal with figures between 0 and 50%.

          GW15: Snarky, ad hominem, irrelevant comment. Again, atypical for you.

          GW15: You failed to comment on the recent scenarios I presented. They really cut through the ice.

        • Greg G.

          As a retired psychologist, I assume you can provide evidence to back up any claim that the psychological risks of termination to the man are greater than the psychological risks to the woman of being forced to continue the pregnancy. So, please do so.

          It seems to me that it might be a personal issue with GW. He seems to think he would feel better if the woman and baby died during childbirth than the woman deciding to not risk it.

        • MR

          His comments sometimes creep me out. Fortunately, his style is too hard to read, so mostly I don’t bother, but I’ve been enjoying Cynthia’s contribution lately. (waves to Cynthia)

        • Greg G.

          I have stopped conversing with him because of his creepy comments and tone trolling. But his commenting style takes getting used to but nobody but him cares to do so.

        • Ignorant Amos

          He’d disagree that his style is a pain in the arse to read, and insist it is the most reasonable way to comment, because GW says so. He’s a fucking cock.

        • Cynthia

          (Waves back)

          I’m done with that thread. He seems to be getting off on thoughts of confining women and I’m getting creeped out.

        • Jennifer A. Nolan

          Good idea. If anyone on the Internet is a misogynist, GW is!

        • Cynthia

          I wonder. I mean, I can understand being a guy feeling bad about the decision but it takes a certain amount of being an asshole or control freak to actually expect to physically force someone to continue a pregnancy against their will.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Indeed!

        • Cynthia

          Anyone weirded out by Gary being so anxious to forcibly confine pregnant women? Definitely getting a freaky vibe here so I’m going to back away slowly. Having 60 people over for dinner between tonight and tomorrow so it is nap time. Happy whatever holidays you do or enjoy a day off work.

          Anyway, cute holiday humour: https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/3439b8ae43afba3eec07503c56b42ceea1665de790ce6500625f3d78a0d15889.jpg

        • Ignorant Amos

          Anyone weirded out by Gary being so anxious to forcibly confine pregnant women?

          That, but not just that neither. He is defo a weirdo on other stuff. His obsessive desire to physically punish seems unhealthy too.

          Definitely getting a freaky vibe here so I’m going to back away slowly.

          Yeah…he’s not getting it anyway, so you are wasting your time at this point I imagine. Also, he will get ya to the point of exasperation and you’ll write something that’ll give him the excuse to block ya and gloat that he is right.

          Having 60 people over for dinner between tonight and tomorrow so it is nap time.

          Sounds like you’ll have plenty to organize and get done.

          Happy whatever holidays you do or enjoy a day off work.

          Too much holy rolling here. Not just one day. It started yesterday. Movement services, banks, postal services…pubs have enforced restricted opening hours, lot’s of shops close up, etc…not today, starts again tomorrow and runs on until Tuesday. Pain in the arse.

          The kids enjoy it, they get a fortnight off school and a glut of chocolate eggs.

          You enjoy yer socializing though.

        • Cynthia

          Had no idea the holiday in Ireland was so long. Is that Holy Week as well?

          Getting ready for everyone was exhausting but once it starts it is actually a lot of fun. I like the idea of all the nieces and nephews knowing that Auntie Cindy throws the family dinners and being part of making memories.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Is that Holy Week as well?

          Nope. Not quite. That’s something else entirely. It’s complicated.

          There are restricted licensing laws from Easter Thursday through to Easter Sunday. Easter Monday and Easter Tuesday are business as usual on pub opening times.

          https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/content/easter-licensing-hours-2019

          Good Friday is a bank holiday. Banks and government offices close. Some places take it as a public holiday too, mostly Catholics, so lots of businesses close too.

          Easter Saturday is not a holiday, but many take it as a holiday in order to make a long weekend of it. Some industry close for general maintenance to be performed over these holidays.

          Easter Sunday everywhere is closed…except bars and restaurants.

          Easter Monday is a bank holiday again…and also a public holiday.

          Easter Tuesday is a public holiday for those that didn’t opt to take Good Friday as a holiday. Mostly Protestants, so lots of businesses are closed.

          Those in education are off for two weeks. Schools are closed.

          Religion interfering in the lives of those that are not interested in it. And costing the economy millions with the antiquated licensing laws alone.

          http://www.irishnews.com/business/2018/03/27/news/it-s-no-april-fool-as-easter-licensing-laws-cost-hospitality-20m-1285732/

          Hence the reason I tense up when some fuckwit holy roller asks the stupid question, “What’s all the fuss about, why are you atheists so angry?”

        • Cynthia

          Thanks for the explanation.

          Here in Canada, Good Friday and Easter Sunday just about everything is closed (except a couple of local grocery stores which may have gotten exceptions to allow last minute Passover shopping). Saturday is normal. Today schools, banks and government stuff is closed but other offices are open. Never heard anyone talk about Easter Thursday or Tuesday.

          I guess kids where you are don’t get a March Break.

        • Ignorant Amos

          I guess kids where you are don’t get a March Break.

          A missed this earlier…soz.

          They get a couple of days midterm in February.

          Along with Easter, they get about ten days at Christmas and two months summer holidays, July and August…a few days for Halloween…and various other days off too.

          https://www.education-ni.gov.uk/articles/school-holidays

        • C12: As someone who has experienced pregnancy losses and healthy pregnancies – I still say that forced gestation is the greater harm.

          GW12: Your experiences are similar to but not the same as experiences in the conditions we are comparing. Your experiences are still somewhat useful for understanding. You believe that a forced pregnancy would entail greater harm, overall, than a forced loss of a ZEEF. I disagree. I’ve tried many ways to get you to view this differently, but none has worked. I don’t think we will come to agreement on this point.

          C12: The emotional or psychological harms to the man can also occur to the woman who is forced to gestate, to an equal or greater extent.

          GW12: “Can also occur” is accurate. However, for rational comparison we should consider typical or most cases. What makes the man’s situation so horrible is that it involves somebody else knowingly causing the death of a living human organism to which the man is attached and upon which he is pinning his hopes of fatherhood. The loss of the ZEEF is permanent. It cannot be resurrected. This is worse than a forced pregnancy, IMO.

          C12: Post-partum depression or even psychosis isn’t exactly unknown.

          GW12: We can and should consider extreme reactions in either condition, but we should focus on typical or most cases.

          GW12: Here is a new thought experiment for you to ponder:
          The Man and Surrogate Scenario:
          For years a man has wanted to be a single father of a child but has not wanted to be married. He finds a clinic which promises to make his wishes come true. Through the clinic he hires a surrogate to provide an egg for conception and also “natural incubation services.” He will be given full custody over any newborn. The man agrees to submit a sperm sample. The surrogate woman agrees to insemination, becoming pregnant, and sustaining any human organism for full term. A contract is signed. The surrogate becomes pregnant and soon after she experiences typical uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms and requests an abortion. The man is very anxious and angry about this change in mind by the surrogate. The man files suit to prevent the abortion. What is the ethical resolution? A judge should rule that the surrogate must continue her pregnancy and make a good faith effort to complete the contract, as long as no significant dangers to the life and health of the surrogate occur. The judge should rule that the surrogate be closely monitored and even confined if necessary to prevent her from getting an illegal abortion or otherwise harming the fetus.

        • GW11: Let’s ask 5000 women this question:
          “In which of the following situations would harm to you be the greater, when projected over the course of your life?
          A. Being forced to knowingly complete a pregnancy for seven months with all the usual attendant discomforts, inconveniences, extra activities, and risks.
          B. Experiencing the death of the fetus inside you which you intended to keep, when that fetus is killed by another person against your will.”

          B. How is this relevant? I thought we were talking about the harm to the man? Maybe I’m missing the point of the conversation here.

        • No, I don’t think you are missing the point of the discussion. We are discussing the harm to the man compared to the harm to the woman in one particular situation which is a moral dilemma. However, you are missing the relevance of the survey question.

          Option B presents a hypothetical scenario in which the harm to the woman in the scenario would be similar to the harm to the man in the other scenario we have been discussing. The intent of the question is to attempt to remove any gender bias or prejudice so that harms can be more easily compared.

          Of course there are other questions with other samples which could be designed which would be helpful.

        • Susan

          It is a position which says that women’s lives matter less than men’s feelings

          That’s it, encapsulated.

          And the only justification is because Gary says so.

          That is a clear example, if not the definition, of misogyny.

      • quinsha

        At the very least, access to contraception will be easier.

  • Chuck Johnson

    I think hedonism is one of the most
    morally defensible philosophies.
    If the purpose of life is pleasure,
    it becomes hard to justify suffering.

    The purpose of life is not just pleasure.
    Life has many purposes and pleasure is among them.

    Besides, this quote gets things backwards.
    It should be:

    The purposes of pleasure and suffering are life.
    The Darwin-Wallace discovery shows us this.

    • Otto

      The purpose of life is not just pleasure.

      It is to a hedonist.

      • Chuck Johnson

        Not even to a hedonist.
        They still balance checkbooks, pay taxes, etc.
        Look up the definition of hedonist.

        • Otto

          adjective
          “engaged in the pursuit of pleasure; sensually self-indulgent.”

          If those things are not done pleasure will not be able to be pursued. Kinda hard to be self-indulgent in jail or prison…or if you are homeless. 😉

        • Chuck Johnson

          “Hedonist: a person who believes that the pursuit of pleasure is the most important thing in life; a pleasure-seeker.”

          My definition is complete and shows that pleasure-seeking is one of various important things to a hedonist.

          You provided an edited definition to try to support your original comment.

        • Ignorant Amos

          There is no necessity to balance a checkbook or pay taxes in order to be hedonist.

        • Chuck Johnson

          Trolling again.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Bwaaahahahaha….am not the arsehole dropping into conversations in order to talk shite…that’ll be you me ole Chuck.

        • Otto

          No I didn’t, I provided the full definition from the place I pulled it from…so before you accuse me of being dishonest make sure your facts are correct.

          You looked up Hedonism…I looked up hedonistic.

          And regardless, your definition does not refute the point I made. I am happy to use either and my point stands.

        • Chuck Johnson

          “so before you accuse me of being dishonest . . . ”

          So you supplied a definition of a different word than the one under discussion, and you didn’t bother to mention that.
          And you want to not be known as “dishonest”.

          Your line of answers to me has been dishonest from the start.
          Congratulating yourself for being honest and correct does not make it so. – – – You enjoy trolling.

        • Otto

          Jesus fucking Christ learn when someone is trolling…your throw around that accusation like it is bird seed. Quite being a douche.

        • Chuck Johnson

          A line of comments like yours helps me to learn when someone is trolling.
          Thank you for your insincerity. – – – It is enlightening.

        • Otto

          AND I pointed out to you EITHER definition does not support your point…it literally does not matter as to the issue you erroneously raised…and you continue to ignore that and now you are off throwing out more red herrings. I could accuse YOU of being a troll…but I am smart enough to know the difference.

        • Chuck Johnson

          You are smugly assured that you are right and that I am wrong.
          So I have to wonder whether I am seeing your dishonesty or your stupidity here.
          Or both.

        • Otto

          When you don’t engage the point and instead bring up things that are irrelevant…yeah I am pretty sure you are wrong and just can’t admit it.

  • Phil Rimmer

    In future we should be shocked that we ever brought our kids up to not give offense before we taught them not to take it. Breeding self confidence and resilience inoculates us against the witting or unwitting goading of bullies, the stupid, the ignorant and the manipulative.

    In future we should be amused at the inordinate length and padding out of non-fiction books and their long-past need to deliver a seemingly valuable amount of paper for our money.

    We should become horrified that ordinary citizens in taking up weapons for daily self protection must needs rehearse mentally the killing of others to reduce the enhanced liability to their own violent deaths. That they must become prepared for a future life with blood on their hands and that un-washable damned spot of PTSD. That a gun as jury and sentencing judge is civilisation demented.

    In future we should be shocked that we never noticed that corporations are legally required to behave as rational psychopaths on behalf of its owners. That neo-classical economics is a faith based enterprise in need of broad scientific (epidemiological etc.) testing of its tenets and sparse metrics of “value”. That growth of value can be conceptual in the finding and solving of problems. Stuff was so old school. Non circular economies a schoolboy (sic) immoral error.

    • Otto

      In the future we will be shocked that property crimes are for more important and serious than personal violence against each other. If someone walks into an empty house and takes a TV that such a crime is a felony and gets a decent amount of investigation, but if a random person picks out a stranger and beats him/her bloody it is a minor misdemeanor that might warrant a quick once over, but more often than not is quickly swept under the rug. Some day we will learn that taking minor violence seriously will actually reduce the more severe kinds that happen all too frequently.

    • epicurus

      Padded out non fiction is the main reason I make more use of public and university libraries than than I need to. I refuse to pay for the bloated 300 pages that should be 50.

      • Phil Rimmer

        For me its not the cost, its having to pan through the pulp for the nuggets,

        Kindle has reset what books need be and hypertext and footnotes and appendices can tidy away the non essential.

        Kindle could sell 3 or even 4 versions

        10 page executive summary
        50 page full account
        150 page with footnotes, bibliography, appendices.
        500 page of all materials used and not used, links, notes supplementary thoughts….

        Each one gives you a suitable discount on the next to encourage on-selling. I increasingly get audible with my kindle…

        • epicurus

          Good idea

        • Aram

          Reader’s Digest has your back! 😉

        • Phil Rimmer

          Ah yes! It was the little jokes/anecdotes at the end that got me reading it… Hmm?

          Indeed there are digesting services like blinkist.com.

          I think this temporary only until publishers get their own authors to do the official hypertexted, linked-in and on selling version.

        • Aram

          I joke. Reader’s Digest is a horrid little magazine.

        • Phil Rimmer

          Yep. Hates Commies and loves the military.

  • Jim Baerg

    I think one of the greatest possible moral advances would be if everyone followed the advice of this essay.
    https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Ethics_of_Belief
    Most evil is done by people who think they are the good guys, but who are acting on mistaken beliefs.

  • skl

    Bob S. could do a summary of the 200+ comments by “social
    error” category. I’d bet that abortion comes out on top.

    • HairyEyedWordBombThrower

      How about you try that again, in English?

      Packing the comments and then claiming that your topic has the largest count is blatant dishonesty.

      • Michael Neville

        That’s our ski.

      • Susan

        Packing the comments and then claiming that your topic has the largest count is blatant dishonesty.

        Especially when you pack them with bullshit. People can’t just let bullshit go unaddressed.

        So, throw out a lot of smelly chum and proclaim victory when commenters respond.

    • Ignorant Amos

      So fucking what…you’ll still be wrong about it.

    • Otto

      I would also bet you would be on the wrong side of the issue.

    • Connie Beane

      I predict that the failure to provide universal sex education and free, reliable birth control will come out way ahead of abortion as a social error.

      • Pofarmer

        This.

  • I believe this is a useful exercise so I’ll participate. I predict that in the future prostitution will be a thriving safe, legal, ethical, and universal business enterprise. And at the same time marriages will be less prone to divorce and rely more on sharing activities other than sex.

    • Aram

      What an odd comment about marriage. You are quite the conundrum, Sir Gary. In your parts of the world is it common for married couples to only be together for a shag, because being a married man myself, one who had plenty of premarital sex with plenty of women, I didn’t marry my wife because of the sex, but rather because we shared a shit-ton of other traits in common. Sex is the easy part.

      As to prostitution, it already is a thriving, safe, legal, and ethical practice in Germany. I recommend you take a trip to the Reeperbahn in Hamburg, would be a real eye-opener for you, I’m sure.

      This comment, along with your others on abortion, makes me think you were raised in a very fundy atmosphere and have yet to shake off the vestiges of it – certainly you have yet to shake off a lot more of your upbringing than you seem to realize.

      • A1: What an odd comment about marriage. You are quite the conundrum, Sir Gary. In your parts of the world is it common for married couples to only be together for a shag, because being a married man myself, one who had plenty of premarital sex with plenty of women, I didn’t marry my wife because of the sex, but rather because we shared a shit-ton of other traits in common. Sex is the easy part.

        GW1: Sir Aram, I still don’t understand why you found my comment about marriage odd.

        A1: As to prostitution, it already is a thriving, safe, legal, and ethical practice in Germany. I recommend you take a trip to the Reeperbahn in Hamburg, would be a real eye-opener for you, I’m sure.

        GW1: I don’t doubt this claim, but prostitution is not thriving, safe, legal, and considered ethical everywhere, especially in the US. I have made the prediction that it will become so.

        A1: This comment, along with your others on abortion, makes me think you were raised in a very fundy atmosphere and have yet to shake off the vestiges of it – certainly you have yet to shake off a lot more of your upbringing than you seem to realize.

        GW1: Try to stick to the topic. This isn’t about me or you. This branch of the discussion is about prostitution. If you wish to comment on abortion, please go to another branch.

        • Aram

          Okay so, maybe it’s a Bible Belt thing, but otherwise since when do people get married just for sex? Your answers seem to be very regional based with a tiny radius of reality encompassed in them. I recommend you get out more.
          Yes, this is about me and you when we talk. I’m trying to understand how you think as it relates to the bizarre comments you make on here, but mostly I’m concluding you operate through a thick cloud of misinformed arrogance aka Dunning-Kruger effect in full thunder strike. I should probably just be on my way, as clearly we aren’t even speaking the same language.

        • Max Doubt

          “Yeah nah, Gary, you’re just fucking insane.”

          Yep. True. I located a mental health facility within a couple miles of Gary’s home and gave him the contact information to get him started. I don’t think he ever followed up on it.

        • Aram

          I’m not even saying this in an overly mean way. I’m genuinely concerned by his apparent state of mind, as the mental parameters he’s operating within appear to be completely askew. Well, hopefully he’s kept the contact info you’ve given him and will make the call in his hour of need. Good on ya for thinking of others.

        • Cynthia

          I noticed many comments on different topics which made me conclude “white American evangelical who just happened to lose faith in Christian dogma but still has the rest of that worldview unquestioned.” Along with “former prison psychologist with an authoritarian streak”.

          Just being an atheist or skeptic wouldn’t explain why he would doubt that an Iranian seeking asylum could have a reasonable fear of persecution for converting to Christianity. Or why he would think that it is okay for the state to force a woman to continue an early stage pregnancy that has a 1% chance of killing her just because the baby daddy wants the baby. Or why he would insist that Judaism is just based upon a literal reading of the Pentateuch (it is not) and that anyone identifying themselves as a Jew who doesn’t have those beliefs is dishonest or delusional. Or why he wants to stop women in hijab from working in the public sector. Or why he keeps insisting that we make more laws because “punishment works” without actually dealing with problems in enforcing laws including racism and classism. Or why he won’t address the practical implications of and evidence for his proposals. (That last point is just weird IMHO. It led to one odd conversation where he was insisting that the moral thing to do if someone was drowning would be to jump in and save them….and me, as a former lifeguard, having to explain that this just results in another person dying unless they are properly trained.)

        • Aram

          Yep, I think you’ve nailed it. He dropped the Christianity but held onto every bit of shite that surrounds it. Bully for him, he gets to feel superior to everyone now!

        • Max Doubt

          “Try to stick to the topic. This isn’t about me or you. This branch of the discussion is about prostitution. If you wish to comment on abortion, please go to another branch.”

          That control freak incivility thing is just bred deep in you, isn’t it? How about if you want to control the discussion you start your own blog. This isn’t the first time you’ve been given this very good advice. How’s about you not ignore it this time?

          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/8584e9699835300b5cfac987c3af16856c52f4b5b6ac834122c051053c91097a.gif

  • Grimlock

    Maybe they will have stopped condemning people of the past for being products of their time and upbringing?

    #meta

  • eric

    Just riffing on a very excellent medical finding out of the UK today…I predict cervical cancer and several related cancers will be completely eliminated/cured from all human populations!

    Well, except for religiously conservatives ones. Those will continue to refuse to vaccinate their teens against HPV, and so their women will continue to suffer from the several cancers that result from it.

  • ildi
  • Michael Murray

    I just hope that there is enough of human society left that there are people who look back on the past and comment on it.

  • Len

    One thing we can be sure of: When society is finally comfortable with the new way of thinking (whatever it’s about), the church will have always supported that way of thinking too.

    • Aram

      Indeed, we still owe them so much for ending slavery, fighting for woman’s right, civil rights, winning WW2, curing cancer…

  • Chuck Johnson

    Bob, you have hit upon the best way to do moral philosophizing.
    The philosophers spend most of their time rehashing old arguments.
    The religionists project absurd, cartoony futures.
    This might include “left behind” scenarios or an eternity of dancing with Jesus in the clouds.

    The scientists employ empiricism and have an ability to extrapolate from the present into the future.

  • Which practice or attitude, customary today, will our descendants look back on with surprise or shock?

    I haven’t seen anybody else mention it yet, so I will: Bottled water! The plastics are a huge pollution problem. We’ve become such a consumption focused society that we’re willing to pay a MASSIVELY inflated prices for a product that’s no better than what comes out of your tap (perhaps with a filter.)

    I shake my head when I see people walking out of a grocery store with several cases of water bottles.

    • Ignorant Amos

      I agree. I use a Brita Marella water filter jug to fill the reservoir in my fridge freezer from the tap. It’s as good as any bottled water, I’ve had it tested.

  • JBSchmidt

    1) Society will be shocked at the millions of dead babies killed out of convenience.
    2) How liberal philosophy went from free speech to restricting speech.

    • 1. Atheists abhor killing babies as much as anyone. Perhaps your wording is confused?

      2. What are you thinking of here? I’m all for free speech.

      • JBSchmidt

        Wording is correct, we kill numerous babies every year. History will just look back and notice that we didn’t consider them human at the time of their death.

        Never claimed you weren’t. It is hard to argue when you see what is happening on the college campus and on certain social media platforms.

        • Damien Priestly

          …and certain churches, religions,

        • You can define words however you want, but you don’t seem particularly interested in communicating. If you want to slap a meaningless meme down on the table, you succeeded.

          We may agree on the college campus question, though I’m not sure precisely what you’re referring to. College is supposed to be challenging.

        • JBSchmidt

          History will look back at the killing of millions of unborn babies under the distinction that they are not fully human, including those killed that are fully viable outside the womb at their time of birth, as barbaric and born of a selfish culture. Not unlike the disgust in the practice of child sacrifice or the exposing of unwanted children in ancient Rome.

          How about the inability for speakers from both sides to have equal access to the public campus? Or the violent reaction on public campus to views that don’t fit in the progressive agenda?

        • No, the killing of a zygote that is a single cell is very, very unlike exposing unwanted or imperfect children.

        • JBSchmidt

          Then we must agree on everything after day one. Never mind, you have already proven my point.

    • Joe

      1) What’s a good reason for killing babies?

      2) Liberal philosophy is a massive area not confined to local government’s free speech laws. It may address them but not all of it does.

  • Sharon Horton

    Which practice or attitude, customary today, will our descendants look back on with surprise or shock?

    Using toilets filled with clean, drinkable water. Really, is this the only way to dispose of our wastes, when so many people don’t have any clean water to drink and cook with?

  • Cynthia

    Failing to focus on what actually works when it comes to human behavior. Pious pronouncements don’t work.

    This is changing slowly but there is still a lot of thinking that we should just tell people what to do, punish them if they don’t do it and call that morality. I’ve seen it in corners of the left as well as the right, just on different issues. The right is more likely to think that pushing abstinence works for both sex and drugs and oppose naloxone or free IUDs. The left has social justice warriors who think that saying “it’s not my job to educate you” is somehow helpful.