Abortion Question: Do Women Have Any Value?

In a very long comment thread on one of my posts, zasz2003 had this to say about the worth of a woman’s life:

How many children could be saved, even if a mother is lost.  It is a very stoic conlcusion but just because the Mother can yell and scream and plead doesnt mean she is worth more than the fetus.

I had read this post by Amanda at Pandagon, but I just didn’t see anyone actually forcing birth upon women at the expense of their lives:

more to the point, if you allow that women have value and shouldn’t be forced to die because of pregnancy or shouldn’t be forced to bear a child because of rape, then you open yourself up for the argument that women have rights.

But that comment by zasz2003 really stuck with me.  So I have a question for the anti choice crowd:

Are you prepared to force a women to go through with a pregnancy, even if it is certain she will die, and the fetus will absolutely not survive?

This is why the anti-choice crowd are most properly called anti-women.

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72 Responses

  1. I hate to seem heartless but yes I am. I fully understand the rights of a woman. The right to choose what happens to her body. The right to live even. However the fetus if a person has those same rights.
    Yes I know both may die, however killing one to save the other is in my opinion morally repulsive. I have never been called anti-woman before, congrats your my first =] Well I call pro choicers more properly Anti-children. Forcing a woman to die by not preforming and abortion is allowing nature which has bore children since the dawn of time take its course. Abortion is activily killing a living human being with the same rights as a woman.
    You look at it from the womans point of view. From a fetus’s point of view doesn’t it have the right to life, and not be intentionally killed by the mother. Now the fetus could die in birth and the mother will, however if they are both equal you let nature take its course. I hate to go into passive actions but no one I have ever talked to has gone this deep into hypotheticals and I has really made me think.
    (sorry if i seem biting with the term hypotheticals and all the you, i am not ad hominem…)

  2. Zas,
    You are so poorly informed that your ignorance blunts the disgust I feel at your comments. For the record, let me say this:
    No. You do not understand the rights of women. Fully, or otherwise.

  3. I have to agree fully with Mirth’s assessment Zasz.

  4. Yeah, me too.

  5. Wow that is a hard question. One thing I want to ask is how sure can we be that the fetus will die with not a shadow of a doubt. And how would we know that a women would die for certain too?
    I have another question that if some one could asnwer, that would be great. What about tubular pregnancies. I have never heard of any one pro-life address this issue. Once women find out that they have this problem they can have the fertalized egg removed surgically. I guess in this manner we would know that both mother and child would die if the pregnancy carried on. So how do we deal with that? The baby will die no matter what, but the mother could be saved, couldn’t she?

  6. Andrew, its just a hypothetical, to draw out both the effect of the court’s ruling and the ethics of those who support it fully.

    I actually haven’t heard anyone really discuss tubular pregnancies, or even better, research that could create a non invasive alternative to pregnancy and abortion. What if we found a way to keep fetuses alive independent of the woman, at any stage of development? With late term abortion, it is often a situation where the woman wants to have a baby, but for medical reasons, cannot do so safely. I wonder why the anti-woman/”pro-lifer” crowd doesn’t put their energy into finding a way to make abortion an unnecessary choice, rather than removing the choice at the cost of the woman’s life.

    But back to the court ruling, yes, in some situations the woman can be saved absolutely, and the fetus may or may not survive. In that case, I think it horrible that the woman no longer counts according to the Supreme Court.

  7. Well your ad hominem with no explination is great arguing by your part! If so explain to me… Here is my view on rights of women. They can make ANY decision conserning their body. They can make any decisions affecting external objects as long as it does not un neccesarly harm/kill them. What more? The right to life, i agree, but that denies the right of anothers life in this situation. You beg 2 questions here. The fetus is part of the womens body and she has complete control over its fate. And that the fetus doesnt have any rights whatsoever, ergo denying its person hood. Tell me what determines personhood? Unless you agree that a womens rights extend to killing another person. You must disprove the person hood of a fetus. Do not dodge the question what determines personhood!?

  8. “They can make ANY decision concerning their body”

    Except, that is, for their reproductive organs.
    For THOSE they need the government to decide.

  9. Zasz, addressing you directly is hardly an ad hominem. Or do you mean my saying I wanted to take a look at the ethics of those who feel the life of the woman is worthless?

    I am not begging any questions. I am asking one. I will rephrase it: Why should a woman be sentenced to die because she is pregnant?

    I am saying the answer should stand regardless of the personhood of the fetus. I do not need to prove anything. I am simply using an example to show where the Supreme Court’s ruling fails.

    With regard to personhood, well, who knows? Perhaps consciousness (how does one test for that?).

    You have not dodged my question. You have answered. And the answer disregards the value of a human life, that of the woman. It is the same answer the Supreme Court has forced upon every woman and every doctor in this country.

    Mirth’s comment doesn’t even catch all of it. The Court’s decision means the woman’s entire body and life can be disposed of, and she cannot make a single decision to stop it.

    Because apparently having the wrong reproductive organs means the “right to life” does not apply.

  10. Anti-choice crowd anti-women?

    I am anti-choice and a woman! How does that work?

    Andrew,
    Your comment-What about tubular pregnancies. I have never heard of any one pro-life address this issue.

    It has been addressed and we maintain the same stance. tubular pregnancies are hard and dangerous for women, but not impossible. Do some research. Women have had successful tubular pregnancies. However, there are other options. Doctors can do what is necessary to save the woman’s life without an abortion. The pro-life stance is to do what you can to save both lives but do not lose both.

    “You have not dodged my question. You have answered. And the answer disregards the value of a human life, that of the woman.”

    YOU fitness disregard the value of human life at a mass murder level. Yes, I am being so bold as to say the “fetus” is a human life. In the fifth week the baby’s nervous system, heart, and blood vessels are staring to develop. The baby has different DNA, genetic traits, and sometimes gender from the mother. The placenta is rooted to the lining of the womb and separates the baby’s circulation from the mother’s. They are two different people!
    How can you judge that one’s life is more worthy than the other?

  11. “2. mirth | April 24th, 2007 at 6:18 pm
    Zas,
    You are so poorly informed that your ignorance blunts the disgust I feel at your comments. For the record, let me say this:
    No. You do not understand the rights of women. Fully, or otherwise.

    3. fitnessfortheoccasion | April 24th, 2007 at 9:59 pm
    I have to agree fully with Mirth’s assessment Zasz.

    4. Emily | April 24th, 2007 at 11:34 pm
    Yeah, me too.”

    Seriously?
    Can we actually get into an abortion debate or are we only going to call each other “ignorant” and give heartfelt opinion’s like “yeah me too.”

    The issues of our time will never be resolved if we resort to beating around the bush. Let’s respect each other’s points no matter how much we disagree!

  12. ” the AMA recommends that abortions not be performed in the third trimester except in cases of serious fetal anomalies incompatible with life. Although third-trimester abortions can be performed to preserve the life or health of the mother, they are, in fact, generally not necessary for those purposes. Except in extraordinary circumstances, maternal health factors which demand termination of the pregnancy can be accommodated without sacrifice of the fetus, and the near certainty of the independent viability of the fetus argues for ending the pregnancy by appropriate delivery.”

    So basically the AMA believes that except in the most extraordinary circumstance, third-trimester abortions should not be carried out and the pregnancy should be terminated by appropriate deliever.

    I think this law protects the unborn child from mothers who abort because of personal, emotional reasons. Mothers who are subjecting the baby to a death sentence because they made a mistake, or what not. And for that I think this law is good because the chances that the mother would die because of her pregnancy are so very slim. And if her health was inquestion, there are ways to fix that and carry out the pregnancy.

  13. 8. mirth | April 25th, 2007 at 4:42 am
    “They can make ANY decision concerning their body”

    Except, that is, for their reproductive organs.
    For THOSE they need the government to decide.

    When did the fetus become an organ?
    I don’t have a fetus…am I missing an organ?

  14. ffto:
    Oh yes, you do describe the reach of the SCOTUS ruling.

    My comment was to quote zasz and summarize the thinking of the anti-choice crowd.

  15. elqueso,
    Sorry, I don’t engage in silly nonsensical babble on such an important subject.

  16. Wow. A lot of comments!
    I’ll start with El Queso, #10.

    I am anti-choice and a woman! How does that work?

    Apparently really well!

    All of this aside, it looks like we really can all agree that we need more safe successful alternatives to abortion. Can someone sponsor a research bill? Congress can sponsor ethanol and alternative fuel research, why not this?

    No, you are not being bold to say a fetus is a life. You are being bold to suggest it is a mass murder level. And incorrect. What I am talking about is court mandated dismissal of a woman’s right. Here is the another way of looking at it. What if the court had ruled that abortions were mandatory if the tests revealed any genetic defect? Through no fault of the fetus or the woman, there would now be an abortion. Regardless of whether or not the defect meant the fetus would die a week after birth, or be unable to walk. You’d join me in being vocally opposed, right? So why is mandatory death for the woman acceptable?

    Let’s get one thing straight. We clearly disagree on when life begins. I do not think “starting to develop” constitutes “alive”. We do both share the goal of reducing abortions. And frankly, given what I have heard about fetuses removed late in the pregnancy being able to survive, I think every step should be taken to save both. I am in complete agreement there. What I find objectionable on a practical and an ethical level, is for the court to decide that regardless of the specifics of a situation, the fetus’s life is more worthy. It is the court that judged which life is more worthy, and they found in favor of the fetus, and against the life of the woman. In every case. Without exception.

    Do you not see the problem with this?

  17. On to El Queso #11

    Not really, this was a legitimate point on the part of Mirth. There is no need to be condescending with “heartfelt opinions” The Cheese.

  18. Andrew, #12

    Ok, and in those normal circumstances the court’s opinion is not immediately problematic. But let’s take a closer look at that AMA quote:

    Except in extraordinary circumstances, maternal health factors which demand termination of the pregnancy can be accommodated without sacrifice of the fetus

    So in those circumstances, extraordinary though they may be, where the fetus must be sacrificed for the sake of maternal health, now there is a law keeping the doctors from doing so.

    You are unfortunately incorrect in your assesment of the law. If the law made exception for the health of the woman, you’d have a point. But the law makes zero exceptions. The health of the woman is irrelevant in the court’s majority opinion.

  19. El Queso, #13, and Mirth #15
    Mirth is right on here. Mirth was clearly saying that the use of her reproductive organs (eg womb) are under the control of the state. She can use her Vagina as she sees fit, but the womb is state property!

    Mirth #14, And your comment was unfornately right on (although I don’t think they quite got it).

  20. I see you point. this is a problem. the law either gives preference to the right of the women to stay alive if in fact she is going to die by giving birth, or to the unborn child if it will infact kill the mother. I honestly do not know where to find a middle ground. The only ground I can see is to let both die, but that would be completely wrong in my eyes if one could be saved.

    As in the case of tubular pregnancies. The egg is removed because it will kill the mother and therefore itself. It would not make sense to just let both die. One can be saved.

  21. Thanks Andrew. To me, I think the middle ground is if only one can be saved, save that one. To let both die would be completely wrong in my eyes too.

    I agree with that completely.

  22. “No, you are not being bold to say a fetus is a life. You are being bold to suggest it is a mass murder level. And incorrect.”

    You have given me no proof that I am wrong. Give me evidence that the fetus is not a life! Becuase if it is a life then the destruction of that life is murder. But I will need evidence to prove that it is not, because I have seen nothing to denounce that.

    “So why is mandatory death for the woman acceptable?”

    That is extremely dramatic. ABORTION IS NOT THE ONLY ANSWER! It may seem to be but that is because nobody is willing to go through with a dangerous pregnancy to see the results!

    Secondly, the woman’s death is not “mandatory.” It is an occasional TRAGEDY. Yes, I do care when a woman dies of a pregnancy. Saying that I am “anti-woman” is one, extremely offensive, and two, extremely incorrect.

    “Let’s get one thing straight. We clearly disagree on when life begins. I do not think “starting to develop” constitutes “alive”.”

    What I am talking about is not “starting to develop” it is developing. If you have to be “developed” to be considered worthy of the right to life than I am not even there.

    “the fetus’s life is more worthy. It is the court that judged which life is more worthy, and they found in favor of the fetus, and against the life of the woman. In every case. Without exception.Do you not see the problem with this?”

    I do see the problem with this. You think that this is a favoring of one life over another. In order to save many it sometimes requires the sacrifice of a few. That may sound cold but it is not intended that way. The court is not “against the life of the woman” it is saving the lives of so many more future men and women that would be terminated in a partial birth.

  23. Andrew, your thoughtful reassessment is refreshing.

    ffto: Your counterpoints are informed, thus enlightening, and their cool delivery is appreciated.

    This is a good conversation.

  24. Mirth,
    I am sorry that you did not understand my comment. My use of sarcasm was not meant to be “nonsensical.”

    You questioned that a woman can do anything with HER body. Saying that the fetus, or the womb for that matter, are her body is incorrect. They are not her reproductive organs, and are not even organs for that matter.

    I am glad that a woman can do anything with her body. It is when she can do something to someone else’s body that I think we should draw the line.

  25. All this aside, I just wanted to say, Mirth, you are an excellent problem dodger! Hats off to you. I love your scathing two-liner comments that make no argument whatsoever! And your insults, so “pregnant” with meaning! (Pardon the pun)

  26. Alright ffto, you say consioucness determines personhood? Ergo anyone who is in a coma or knocked out looses personhood, at any age, and is therefore eligable for death? There is no reason to think a fetus is not a human unless it doesnt meet a requirement for personhood, give me how it is not. You must understand that if the fetus is a person the woman using her womb to kill a human is wrong! I can use my fist to kill a man, however i cannot because the state says no, well my hands are now property of the state as i cannot make a decision. Same with the womb, a woman can use it to kill another person. It still comes down to whether or not the fetus is a person, a woman can use her WOMB to KILL a person. The question is whether or not the fetus is a person. Allowing a woman to die is allowing nature to act, not activly killing a human to save another. Anyone, would you kill an innocent person only to survive? They did nothing to you, infact you caused their existence? What is the difference there an in a natal suitiation, Well a fetus is family. Only difference and unless it is “more” right to sacrfice a family against consent, there is none. Mirth once again if the fetus is a person killing it for the woman is far worse than letting the woman die. Alright since we have strayed so far despite my best attempts to keep it simple. Does this mean abortion is wrong/right is every case unless abortion is the only way to save the woman? If you wish lets move off special cases and back to the relatity of the issue. In normal cases, nearly all in fact, When the woman is not threatened what justifies the abortion. Womans rights only matter in relation to the rights of other people, my right is to do what i want but if i hurt another my right is void correct? NO MATTER WHAT I AM DOING! therefore it still comes down to the personhood of the fetus.

  27. Oh in response to Andrew’s comment about the fetus killing a woman, or the woman killing the fetus.

    The fetus is acting only as nature intended, the woman is the one PURPOSELY AND INTENTIONALLY KILLING THE FETUS. And the fetus isnt doing it consciously, ergo at worst manslaughter.

  28. elqueso, I beg to differ. An in utero fetus is connected to and thus is a part of a woman’s reproductive organs. It is as much as part of her body as is her blood. Barring artificial means, neither can live outside her body.
    And I find your disregard for one life in favor of another to be repugnant.
    Further, your misrepresentations about the extraordinarily-rare use of lateterm abortion are a false basis for your anti-abortion cause.

  29. This may not be wise, but I’m going to try to fit this all into one comment.

    #22 El Queso:
    Evidence that it is not a life? One needs evidence it is a life. I’m not really certain honestly how one would prove it one way or the other. A certain level of brain activity perhaps?

    Abortion is the only answer in some cases. This is why a just court would have said you have to take the health of the woman into account. It could be the only answer in 2 cases a year. That is still 2 murdered woman a year. This is not drama, it is the result of the court ruling.

    The woman’s death is mandated by the court ruling. You are wrong here. If you cared, you would not support the ruling. You can be fully anti-choice, and still oppose the ruling on the grounds it gives no exception for the health of the woman.

    You have a fully functioning brain. It might not be fully developed yet (Its been a while so I don’t remember exactly what the cutoffs are, but I dimly recall late 20s, 50s, etc), but it has activity. A fetus where the neural crest is forming is just not the same thing.

    It sounds like you think it is favoring one life over another too, but rather, the life of many over the life of a few. It sounds cold because it is cold. It is devaluing women, and dehumanizing women. It is this horrid line of thinking that leads to clinic shootings. Do you support those? Do you think doctors who provide abortions are murderers? Are the killers simply acting in defense of the fetuses, which can’t speak for themselves?

    #23 Mirth: Agreed! (And Thanks) It is a very interesting back and forth. There are a lot of unique viewpoints being offered.

    #24 El Queso
    ???
    The womb is not part of a woman’s body?
    Ah, that’s right, I forget. Some right wingers believe the womb belongs to the husband. You agree with that? How odd. Or does it belong to the fetus? If so, does a woman who gives birth multiple times have to ask the previous children for permission to give their womb to a potential sibling?

    #25 Hey Marcelonicus! Mirth isn’t dodging the problem anymore than El Queso is when the cheese ignores one of my questions. Its a back and forth. I’m not sure what point you are trying to make here.

    #26 Zasz
    Hmmm. I actually think we are always conscious, but that is a theory for another time and place (cognitive psych is *awesome*). So I think a better measure might be a certain level of brain activity. After all, we are not our circulatory system (so heart beat doesn’t work), we are our brains.

    Wombs are lethal weapons?

    Your hands are not property of the state. If you steal, your hands are not chopped off and given to the state. Your action was illegal, that is all.

    Your argument of “allowing nature to act” is callous. Why even have medicine at all? Nature is just acting by killing people with disease, after all.

    Mirth once again if the fetus is a person killing it for the woman is far worse than letting the woman die.

    You have agreed with the court then. Pregnant women are worthless. You must understand that letting the woman die when medicine could save her is nothing less than murder of an actual human being.

    If the court only cared about so called normal cases, it would have struck down the law on the basis of not providing and exception for the health of the woman. The court has instead decided women do not count.

    #27 Zasz
    “Manslaughter charges brought against fetus”. That would be an interesting case…
    I think your comments have once again given rise to another post.

    #28 Mirth
    It is hard to keep the facts straight about the nature and use of late term abortion, isn’t it? To hear the right discuss it, it is a daily occurance.

  30. It’s hard to keep the facts straight because the same ones must be stated over and over and over…a discussion with the anti-choice crowd never advances. It stays mired in misinformation and religious fervor.

    Your comment to Zasz is, mho, the crux of the fundie grip on choice/anti-choice. Speaking generally, this sub-culture opposes all modern advances, whether it be our increasing understanding of evolution or the proper place of females in any society or the moral obligations of the privileged to the poor or a myriad of other issues. With their influence in our government alone, we see where they take our nation from its once respected status to a dark ages of aggression and brutality. Progressives and fundies are simply wired differently.

  31. Mirth, this has certainly been an interesting conversation.

    Im glad you find my previous comments refreshing. I have certainly been reassessing my beliefs, trying to make them stronger and make sure I believe them for the right reasons.

    Yea its hard to argue these things. I think thats why it goes no where fast. We both come to the table with so many different presuppositions and ideas that it takes a lot of time. But hey thats what makes discussing fun. You and Dan have got me thinking a lot about this issue. In the case of a medical certainty of the death of the mother and death of fetus through natural birth, I see a partiality towards the fetus’s right to live. The law will either have to favor the mother or the fetus.

    In this case I think they favored the unborn child in hopes to stop what I believe is the abuse of partial-birth abortions. Clearly you believe the women has a right over the child because it is attached to her. But attachment in my eyes has no precedence over rights. The baby is still dependent upon the mother after birth. Attachment does not simply mean it is part of you. It is a separate organism. You wouldn’t consider a parasite feeding off of you and what you eat part of you? No you wouldn’t. Its a separate organism and in the case of a fetus , it is another human being that has a right to live.

    But this is where I get to my point. The mother has the right to defend her life as well. If giving birth to a baby will certainly kill her and there are no hopes of any other procedure fixing that problem then I ask my self, shouldn’t allow the mother to defend her self? Yes you could let natural causes take its course and claim that we are not actively killing the mother or baby. But if you agree with that let me ask you this. When a mother refuses to breast fread her newborn and lets it die of starvation (a natural occurring death) we would charge that women with a crime. Why? Because she had the means to feed the baby, but did not. Well we have the means to save that mothers life, but this law will not allow us to. We are actively killing the mother by refusing to save her life, when we have the means.

    But please remember I am only arguing in the case of a medical certainty that the mother will die. Not whether she just doesn’t want to give birth or doesn’t want to take care of a child. I am addressing the issue of favoring a women’s right to live over a baby’s right to live. The law is impartial in this area and I am trying to figure out if I think this is ok. As of now, I don’t see how it is.

    This next part is more directed towards any people leaving comments on here that come form a Christian’s stance. Here is a blurb from Exodus chapter 20 that deals with law and punishment. Now I know that we do not live under a God established nation (a theocracy, I know Dan that word may make you cringe you a bit, haha) and I know that Christ did away with the Old Law but it does reveal how God feels about certain things. God’s feelings towards issues have not changed. So back to Exodus 20.

    “If men who are fighting hit a pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely (or has a miscarriage) but there is no serious injury, the offender must be fined whatever the woman’s husband demands and the court allows. But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.”

    In this passage if the women is hit on accident and her baby dies, but she is ok, then the punishment is less serious. But if the women is seriously injured, not the baby because it miscarried, the punishment is severe! It seems that God is partial to the mothers health rather than that of the unborn child. I think that is very interesting. What are you guys thoughts on that?

  32. Alright mirth i hate to do this but to consider yourselfs legitmate in any way what so ever answer my question, at least prove me wrong. Is the fetus a person?

    Once again the woman is not worthless. Nature is not disease it is any natural unacted upon force built into the foundations of the universe, ie misscarrages and the like. Religious fervor? i have not mentioned God or anything else even related to religion, you guys are so focused on the Golden Rule that you must help a woman, and kill the fetus. Do unto others and you do unto yourself right? Help the woman, but kill the child. Its pretty inconsistent Eh? It all comes down to one thing and one thing only the Personhood of the fetus.

    How am I fighting agaisnt advances? I am fighting agaisnt genocide. If that is fighting advances, then gosh dang it Darfur might as well be tommorowland.

    Whats wrong with my conclusion there? Mirth I have never said i am Pro-life, i have never said i am a fundie, i am only arguing logical conclusions. I could be playing devils advocate? Your attacks on my arguements are based soley on your stereotypes, something to be left out of proper argueing. Find the flaws point them out and offer an opposition. If this is going to be reduced to calling names and making fun of the others affiliations, then so be it. But I will make it known that the ones fighting for logic have none, and run from right conclusions and a legitimate arguement. Or at least fail to offer what answers or explinations are asked.

    FFTO you address the issues and i commend you for that. Mirth read a little on proper arguing. IF I CALL YOU OUT TO ANSWER A POINT THAT MY ARGUMENT RESTS ON ANSWER IT!!!! whether you show how it is not pertinent or how it is a wrong pressuposition. Prove it wrong and my arguements falls apart and I will concede and donate in your name to planned parenthood. (sarcastically of course)

    FFTO in response to womb is a lethal weapon, If I get an abortion does my womb get cut out? I use womb for the entire birth sequence. Just like if i use my hands to kill someone. If a women missuses her pregnancy to kill a human it is legally wrong.

    So what mirth didn’t answer FFTO tried, personhood is based on brain activity? Well just because a fetus’s brain isnt there or active the fetus is still reacting to stimuli. A baby a few months old is still not self aware, its brain is really only a advanced nucleus for instincts, and no different than cell neuclii or basic ganglia, only they control a larger being. Therefore having a brain doesnt create personhood. Therefore children are not persons untill they are self aware. And brain activity doesnt occur during comatose, or it is very limited.

    What is your premise based on that we are our brains?

    And the discussion of consciousness is for here and now as it is pertinent to answering my question about personhood.

    The reason test, should be can the person reason, as every animal is self aware, it only uses it to react to stimuli. Since conciousness or properly called self awarness is the sign of personhood, then animals are persons to. Correct? They are selfaware, more so than anyone comatose, a very young baby, or even some cases of mental retardation. They do exactly what our brains do without reasoning. You have to retreat to something physical since consciousness is a very mushy subject.

    Once again to pound it home and answer your question. I do not reduce the woman to nothing. I meerly make the fetus the same level as the mother. What if the mother depended on the fetus to survive? Would it be ethically acceptable to make a decision on the fetus’s part to end the mothers life?

  33. Androo that is a very interesting point! Biblical but interesting.
    This pretty well explains it….
    http://www.str.org/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=5700
    However to sum it up, there is a poor translation. I am worn out and am not in the mood to repeat STR, but enjoy.

  34. yea the article makes sense. It brakes it down pretty well.

    But Josh, my other points still stand without the support of that scripture. Biblically I need to determine if self-defense till death is morally sound with the Bible. Got anything?

  35. Oh and another thing, sorry for being a comment whore.
    Androo in response your self defense argument, and everything contained in that paragraph. They are not the same issue here is what is involved in both.

    Mother, Child, Doctor for abortion.
    Mother is threatened and will probably or certianly die if the fetus isn’t murdered.
    Child, relies on the mother, and if removed too prematurely will die. Will also die if murdered.
    Doctor, no relation to either only preforms the murder of the fetus, or the lack thereof.
    Therefore the mother can actively murder the child to save herself. The doctor can actively murder the child to save the woman. Therefore in acting the doctors kills and innocent life, saving a life, but killing one, by interfering with nature.
    In the case of feeding a child it is like this.
    Mother, has the opportunity to feed the child.
    Child, dependant on the mother to feed it.
    Food, given by the mother to sustain, is inatimate.
    For the child to be saved what must be sacrficed? The first example the mother is in the childs place, and the child must be sacrficed to save the mother. In the case of feeding what is the downside to acting? Well the destruction of food, and unless food is a person it is a different arguement.
    To conclude the downside of interfering with nature for both situations.
    Abortion downside of interferring with nature, death of an innocent life
    Feeding downside is the destruction of food, and inconvience of the mother.

    Does food and inconvience = a life?

  36. Zasz: No, I do not need to make further arguments, particularly circular ones, to prove that I or my beliefs or my sense of morality or my principles are legit.
    But let me add this:
    Respecfully, you equating abortion with genocide is ridiculous and insulting and evidences your ignorance on this subject.

    Androo, I can’t think of anything to add that might enlarge your thinking….except, perhaps, this: extend your research beyond the bible.

  37. What is wrong with equating abortion to genocide? I say the fetus is a person, and equal in personhood to a women man or child. Killing mass fetuses, is like killing mass amounts of people? They are the same depending on the personhood of the fetus. That is the true argument. You not responding to this question is evidences of your ignorance on the subject, lack of logical progression of thought, and debate ettiqute.

    Personally if you wish to concede my arguements go ahead argue no more. However you cannot claim QED after only a brief explination and never answering or asking a single question. Its your decision but it is not proper debate. I never asked for circular arguements either. My arguements are far from circular. And yours can be and should be if you believe them. I am not trying to preach to you guys. I am only trying to get a legitimate defense of abortion. And honestly other than FFTO no one has. And his is still in the process. =] If you are still lacking firm beliefs check this out. It is christian (i know insane!!) but it can answer many of your questions about this subject and many others. http://www.str.org
    Its been fun…

    -Zasz

  38. Here we go:
    #30 Mirth
    I actually have to disagree here. Some discussions with the anti-choice crowd can move forward. I think Andrew has been a very good example. He’s been re-evaluating his positions, and strengthening some and reconsidering others. Also, through the discussion with him I stumbled upon the very curious question about research: Why aren’t we seriously researching safe alternatives to abortion?

    I think there is an opportunity for change with regards to true fundamentalists. There are definitely those who embrace creationism, abhore science, equality for women or homosexuals, and medical advances like stem cell research. However this is not universally true. Often personal experience plays a key role. Oh, your relative is homosexual? Well that wedding is ok. Oh, your mother who really wanted another child has to choose between a low survival rate and an abortion? Suddenly perspectives change. But from the very base sense of neurology, we are all largely wired the same. Our socialization may at times seem as set in stone as our more innate wiring, but it is malleable. Have hope!

    #31 Andrew
    (Out of curiousity, why the Andrew/Androo dichotomy?)
    Ok, moving on.

    Right on, it is your attitude to your own beliefs that is so refreshing.

    The law needn’t favor either. It can be left up to the mother and the doctor.

    After birth, a baby can be dependent on any given mother. Before birth, the fetus is dependent on one particular woman.

    A most astute point on letting nature takes its course. I was going to post on that separately, but I don’t think I need to.

    We are actively killing the mother by refusing to save her life, when we have the means.

    You have the problem with that argument down quite clearly.

    Wow. That is a very interesting quote! One can go even further. If one has a miscarriage as a result, the punishment is a fine (a potentially large fine, but a fine). The eye for an eye clause only applies if the mother is hurt. So if she is killed, then so to the offender. In other words, the death of the fetus, while a crime, is not the same as taking a person’s life. Hmmm.

    #Zasz
    Who are you to determine if Mirth is legitimate? There is no need to issue ultimatums here.
    I will address the fundamental problem with your question. Is the fetus a person? At what stage? At a week? Nope. At 9 months? Yeah. In between? (Crap, get out the science textbooks).

    Any natural unacted upon force. How do you know the woman’s life isn’t in danger because of a disease? You are viewing our arguments through a false lense. I am not focused on the golden rule. I am focused on the court saying the decision of life or death has been made, and a living breathing woman has to die.

    Darfur? Red Herrings don’t make for good arguments Zasz.
    Personally, I’d have tackled this point by either saying “I am not a fundamentalist”, or “I support scientific advances such as… Just not those that are against my ethics”. Either one really.

    Sorry, but I am not sure what conclusion you are referring to?

    Zasz, one needn’t always address the questions of the opposition. A rhetorical question can be one the proponent wants answered, because it is framed to bring about a specific response. It is part of good argument to recognize which aspects of an argument to address, and when to step out and reframe. Also, sometimes a particular argument just isn’t of much interest.

    Ahh! If the brain isn’t there, you do not have a person! How can you? Sorry, that is just a very startling statement.
    I am not certain about self-awareness and such with early infants. Infant cognition is a fascinating and still growing subject. We are however arguing in the dark. I’d like to see a study showing brain activity from fetus on up, and through a range of mental states and health conditions. But I think that might be a productive route to take to answer the question.

    What is my premise we are our brains? If we leave religion out of it, then all available scientific evidence suggests that our brains drive thought, action, and being. So theres that.

    Ok, your argument here is kind of fragmented:
    1. If a being can reason, it is a person.
    2. Every animal is self aware.
    3. Self Awareness is a sign of personhood.
    4. Animals are persons.
    There’s a few holes there. What is premise 1 doing? How do you get to premise 2?

    Ok, so you have made fetus and woman equal, and then decided by law the woman should always die.

    Fortunately, women don’t depend on fetuses for life, or giving birth would be really problematic!

    #33 Zasz
    That link doesn’t quite cut it. The argument presented is that the passage means if a woman is hit so she suddenly gives birth, then fine the shit out of the guy who hit her. How does that make any sense? Why fine the guy if he just induced labor? It makes more sense to recognize that it does refer to a miscarriage.

    #35
    Not at all! This discussion is most welcome.

    Hmmm. That is a pretty good takedown of Andrew’s argument in terms of equivilence. However it is not about the equivilence of sacrifice, but rather the ability to act and the decision not to. A better example for the same argument is, if a person was slowly bleeding to death, and you were a doctor will adequate supplies, and you stand and watch the bleeding person die, would you be culpable? If someone comes to you with a bad flu, and you decide not to give the patient anti-biotics because you feel it would strengthen some of the bacteria, and while that person might be saved, we are all a step closer to a super bug, and hence it is more important to sacrifice the one definitely to save many possibly?

    #36
    Mirth
    No, you don’t need to prove that you yourself are legit.

    Andrew’s point from the Bible was well taken. While I (as he jokingly notes) definitely prefer my arguments from science or logic, he is providing scripture as a counterpoint to scripture. (It was also a very interesting passage). I think it is wrong to admonish him to extend his research. I think he does, he is simply offering a biblical point for the biblically minded. It is very much appreciated.

    #37
    I think Mirth’s point is that no, fetuses are not all people. As I would frame it, abortions at 1 week hardly constitute murder, and hence your accusation of genocide is as far off the mark as it is inflamatory.

    For a legitimate defense of abortion itself, yes, I think one must tackle the question of personhood. However this thread’s goal (way the heck up at the top of a now long page), is to determine the justice of the supreme court’s ruling. The argument I have been advancing (that has garnered some agreement and some opposition) is that to simply decide the life of the woman is worthless, and not leave the difficult decision up to the doctors when the health of the woman is at risk, is a fundamentally unjust ruling.

    It has indeed been fun, everyone! Thanks for participating!
    And if a particular issue evokes more interest, then by all means post and such! (Especially research on alternative, letting nature take its course, the question of personhood, or continuing on the issue of the supreme court devaluing the life of women). This is a discussion we ought to be having.

  39. Zasz, I got a flash for ya…
    Because you think it or say it, doesn’t make it so.

  40. I meant to add:

    Intelligent, thoughtful debate always grabs me…emphasis on the first two words.

  41. I know, my words are hardly canon, and for FFTO to say you are legit grants you none. Reason grants it. I meerly am saying do not contribute by bringing in stereotypes if you do not have reasons. And when you are asked do not claim you do not have to back yourself up. Opinion is different than arguement.

    Sorry FFTO it was rambling here is what i meant to say as far as consciousness. I meant to say consciousness really means not alot. It is meerly self awareness. Anything living is self aware. Even single celled organisms recieve and react to stimuli, and are therefore self aware. Granted a nueclues of a cell is far less complex than a human brain but it preforms the same function correct? To take a evolutionary stand point we still only taking in and reacting to stimuli like animals we are just more capable of reasoning out our stimumli, christianity is pointless to use as the Bible is clearly agaisnt abortion. I said reason is what many believe to be a purely human characteristic, i was meerly saying that might be a better thing to argue for your point. Here is my proof I guess.
    Conciousness is self awareness.
    Self Awareness is recieving and reacting to stimuli.
    Anything living reacts to stimuli, that is a basic requirement for survial, the adapataion of surroundings.
    A cell, zygote, can react to stimuli, on a nucleus level.
    Therefore a cell is concious or better phrased self aware.
    Animals are cells, and further ganglia, and further brains, and therefore are capable of more complex self awareness, however only a more complex version, same old thing a few new tricks.
    Humans take it a step further, but still the same realm. They however can use reason, not only instinct to make decisions.
    A final conclusion, Our brain is much like the nucleus of a cell, just more complex. It takes in stimuli, and produces an effect.

    Another angle you might be attacking is brain activity. This however can be unravelled. Whenever blood stops flowing to the brain or bloodflow is reduced your brain looses some or all activity, i.e. brain dead. This is present in comatose people. However it is not permanent.

    Therefore reason is a better judge of personhood.
    Reason however is not present in comatose people, small children, even very old people, or anyone knocked out. There body is still self aware, and reacting to stimuli, however they cannot reason on how to react. Even though it is a better judge it still takes away personhood from things that are evidently persons. What i meant to claim is that reason is the only purely adult human charateristic presently only there. But it then takes personhood from many people that definently persons.

    I define a person as a human at any stage of life, from conception to death. The zygote has unique DNA, everything to become a fully functioning member of society. It is not a potential human, only a human at an early state. There is no reason to deny a human at any states personhood.

  42. Ya I agree I am far from where you started, but it is the logical progression of an abortion arguement. If you prove abortion wrong at any stage, no law preventing it violates rights. Thats where I was going. If you feel the need to continue it you may start a new post. I will gladly join in, and mabye bring one of my superiors, he is infinintly better than me, and all my arguing is from memory, so it is inherently imperfect. Thanks bunches though.

    And sorry Mirth i was not iquestioning your legitmacy only questioning what you base what you believe on, and calling you out to stand and reason.

    Sorry one more thing FFTO, your relation to my unravelling of Androo’s arguement is also false I believe. Your first assesment has validity,
    Three characters in this “play”
    Doctor, has the ability to save the bleeder, has the ability to decide what to do.
    Bleeder, dying, needs the doctor, cannot save himself, ergo depends on the doctor,
    Gauss, stops bleeding needs a doctor,
    Once again it is nothing like an abortion, an abortion kills a living person, or at least a living thing, to save another. Stopping the bleeding at most destroys some gauss and the doctors time.

    Your second one stumped me for quite awhile, but I may have an answer.
    The potential creation of a super virus is quite a bit different than saving a fetus. The super virus is a potential, a very potential. When you give antibiotics you save on, and possibly aid a virus. However when you abort a baby you save the mother, however kill a child. You once again kill, not give potential to kill. Selling a gun to a killer is not wrong. There is a large corralation to troubled homelifes, video games, and chronic depression. As seen in the latest VT tragedy does that justify killing all people who fit the potentials for killing? Even if they fit very specific catogories they are only potential killers.

    All in all thank you guys and I hope we can continue.

    -Zasz

  43. Well Dan. The reason for the Andrew/Androo is simply that sometimes I forget to log in before commenting and when I dont my Mac automaticly fills in my real name and email for me. haha. so thats why you see some posts with it and some posts with out.

    I just wanted to clear that up. I have some other things to say but I dont really have time right now, but hopefully later.

  44. Mirth, it would be helpful to point out where you are taking exception (I doubt the other commenters will be able to guess. I can see it clearly though. Zasz said “I say the fetus is a person”. And you are right, that hardly constitutes proof of any kind.

    Zasz, while you definitely back up many of your statements, some of them (often pivotal ones such as the life of the fetus) remain without proof or premise to stand upon.

    No worries at all Zasz. Ah. Here is where my cognitive science background actually kicks in. Consciousness is that which is aware, not the state of being aware of one’s self. Reacting to stimuli hardly constitute self awareness however, and cannot be said to be self aware. An amoeba does not, as far as we can tell through scientific means, have an awareness of itself as an amoeba. Recently some animals have been shown to exhibit bheavior that indicates self awareness (like the elephant changing its behavior upon seeing itself in the mirror), but that is all we can really go on. We cannot get “inside” the “black box” of consciousness itself. We do not even have a solid definition for what it is!
    I think Andrew’s Torah quote really does cast doubt on the “Bible is against abortion” thought, but onto reason. Let’s take a look at that proof.
    Or not. The first two premises are false. Consciousness is awareness itself. Self Awareness is the “explicit understanding that one exists”(wikipedia), and as far as science is concerned, observable behavior that indicates this understanding exists.

    I think we need to distinguish between dead and not alive.
    To be dead, one must first have lived. So if there is no brain activity yet in a fetus, it is not brain dead, it simply is not yet alive. Big difference.

    Reason is a judge of personhood? I am really not sure what you are saying reason is. You mean the faculty of reason?
    I also do not see why it is a better judge of personhood than brain activity.

    From conception to death eh? But why? What is it about fertilized egg (single cell) that says “person” to you? And if you base it on the Bible, why can’t I base it on a different belief system? For example, one in which the soul finds the parents a full two weeks before conception. In that sense, if you stop people from having sex, you’ve performed an abortion!

    #42
    Nope. Even if abortion is wrong at every stage, it can still violate rights. It can violate the right of the woman to be alive.

    Ah, thanks! A much different statement Zasz!

    My first example is really saying this:
    You think the issue at hand is “is a person being sacrificed”
    Andrew and I think the issue is “if we stand by and do nothing, are we then guilty?”
    So my example points out that, by normal standards, to let someone die is not “letting nature take its course”, but actively allowing them to die despite your ability to save their life.

    I’m just wondering where you draw the line Zasz. Your reasoning is very utilitarian. You seem very ready to literally let a woman die even if the life of the fetus would not be saved. Which is a lot of things, but not utilitarian. You criticize killing a living thing to save another, but you’d be killing a living person without even the hope of saving that living thing.

    And thank you as well.

    Andrew, yeah, I figured as much. Hopefully indeed, I look forward to your input.

  45. Men and women obviously ought to have decided in advance whether their interplay should result in a child or not. When contraception fails and the resulting child is unwanted, what support does a couple have for the consequences of adopting out their child? What if the woman is actually a child?

    When men are brought into the abortion debate, their role as rapist is rarely discussed. How does this affect the argument? What are the consequences of rape for the rapist when it results in injury/emotional trauma/pregnancy? What are the consequences of rape for society and the woman for that matter? How about when the girl’s father is the rapist?

    My take on all this is: nobody, not religion nor secular society have fully developed viable alternatives to abortion. ALTERNATIVES. Without altenatives no one should be telling any woman she shouldn’t be allowed to terminate a pregnancy.

  46. Hey Cheyenne,
    “what support does a couple have for the consequences of adopting out their child?” In America? Not much. A real social net has to be a part of the discussion.

    “What if the woman is actually a child?” I would think this would be an additional exception.

    I think an exception in cases of rape is essential. The trauma of being made to bear the child of a rape, especially if the father is the father (or another relative) is not a burden an ethical society puts on anyone.

    I agree. We need real alternatives.

  47. Ah see my lack of post high school science kills me. And I only begged the question to show how outrageous claims seemed if you do not believe the fetus to be a person. Therefore trying to get you back onto what I believed the true subject to be.

    And to tell you the truth consciousness is the hardest point for me to defend as far as abortion. I need to do some research and get back to you. As for now I do not support abortion but you did bring up a great point!

    However personally what defines personhood for me is as follows.
    Anything that is distinctly human, i.e. DNA.
    Anything that is alive.
    At any stage of development.
    Anything that has started its course down humanity.
    In other words, animals are not persons.
    Dead people are not persons.

    Really my problem with consciousness is what I know about myself doesn’t make who I am? Just because I recognize myself as me doesn’t make me who I am. What I am makes me, not how I see myself even if I do not see myself. And also I cannot see how you can claim it wrong to kill a human. Yet kill something evidently human, even though it is at an early stage.

    Another thing do you know when we are first self aware? Just curious I have heard as late as a little over a year after birth. But I am not sure. Which should by consciousness as a determinate mean you can in some sense kill babies.

    I think a zygote is a human/person. It is fully human, only at a different state. It is still a person, and will grow if nature goes well, to a grown human.

    Reason is the faculty to reason. Not only react but weigh options, and look ahead. Which I believe (other than biblical stuff) is the only truly human trait. Yes a monkey can solve a simple puzzle, but mostly by trial and error or simple memorization imprint. However humans plan, we save for the future, we extrapolate current situations to prepare for the next ones. That’s more what I meant.

    Finally as far as my utilitarian ideals I have this.

    You pinned me, it’s ok to let 2 people die, but to kill one to save the other is wrong. The problem I have is killing one. I believe under no circumstances, (outside of war and discipline) should you kill another person. Even if your reasons are very useful, you are still actively killing someone. When you let them die as an alternative to kill them it is different. The whole active part is what i cannot come to terms with. However I can see where you see the foolishness, its really a matter of morals in that front, but still comes down to the fetus which you are giving me a run for my money.

    Ok I guess not finally then…
    The Old Testament passage that Androo brought up I think was very well explained in the article put out by http://www.str.org They define the miss translations of the Bible verse. It was a very interesting point and I struggled for a bit on that.

    Sorry if I got a little fiery and unprofessional up there a ways. My mistake and this is my first real argument, and first blog. So I am still learning.

  48. People can monday night quarterback this issue with ease. I am nota woman but have never been placedin a situation where as to needan abortion for a wife or female friend. I believe in the constitution and Roe vsWade desicion. The female should never loose any rights. The baby is a product of both female and male cohorting. The female of the relationship is the one whom bears the most physical affects, emotionalis both genders. The person thta has the idea to remove such rights should be shot in the head or genitile area. I would ask the individual what have you done to somebody? From an X law enforcement persons view.

  49. until mayana

  50. Zasz,
    Do you start with a conclusion, and try to find premises that support it? Or do you start with observations, and try to see what the conclusions might be?

    By your definition of personhood, sperm and eggs are people. They have certainly started their course.

    Simple. I am saying that the question of personhood is not central to the supreme court ruling. I am also saying that in general, where it is clear that the fetus is not a person, there are no ethical issues with an abortion.

    Hmmm. That would be a fun point to discuss, but in another thread I think.

    I think it might be productive to explore the difference between letting someone die, and killing them. For example, you sometimes hear cases of people who let their young children die because their faith doesn’t allow for medical treatment. This strikes me as murder, plain and simple.

    I disagree with their interpretation. I don’t think they made a clear case. I think they started out with a troublesome passage and a goal (abortion is wrong), and went from there in a rather shaky manner.

    No worries, I’ve enjoyed it immensely. You might want to say some words to Mirth though, if you feel moved to.

    I look forward to seeing how your community blog develops.

    Erik,
    Ummmm. Shooting in the head or genitals? Bad idea. I do agree that women shouldn’t lose their rights as a result of pregnancy though.

  51. I know, I agree I was a bit to intense, and stepped out of my bounds. I am used to arguing with my good friends and we get a little intense with zealous. Coupled with the fact that I am an avid gamer and anything typing makes me hyped up. It was a bad combo and I apologize.

  52. Andrew… you brought up a passage in Exodus, which you cited as chapter 20. just to clear up any confusion, the passage is actually chapter 21, verses 22-25. But that is beside the point. You asked for some Chrisitan input on this passage. The context in which you quoted it, made it seem that it was saying if there is any serious injury to the mother, the punishment is greater. But there is no limitation there. This passage does not say say “serious injury to the the mother” it says merely “serious injury”. So in this, i would say that God is not putting the value of one life over the value of the other. If serious injury would occur to the unborn child, i belive the punishment would be eye for eye and tooth for tooth, just as it would be for the mother. You see, when it says premature birth, it says that there is no serious injury as a result of this premature birth, to the mother, or to the unborn child. So, in conclusion, God does not value the life of the woman above the life of the child, he is setting this law as standard if either the child or the mother is harmed. Also, this is a law in the old covenant, we are now, as Christians, under a new covenant, given to us by Jesus Christ.

  53. Hello again, I am back after a minor leave of absence.

    Before I get into this again I want to make a statement to fitness and mirth: Sometimes I may use all caps or an exclamation point to emphasize a certain point I am making. I hope you are not thinking I am yelling at you, because I am not. I enjoy these debates and I do not want to come across as a crazy “bible-thumper” who has no idea what she is saying.

    Mirth:

    “elqueso, I beg to differ. An in utero fetus is connected to and thus is a part of a woman’s reproductive organs. It is as much as part of her body as is her blood. Barring artificial means, neither can live outside her body.”
    While they are connected the fetus is not part of her body, especially not as much as her blood. No the child would not survive outside of her body, but a new born cannot survive without the mother either so I do not see how that proves it is part of her body. The fetus has its own circulatory system, nervous system, DNA, and can have a different gender than the mother. It is a completely different being.

    “And I find your disregard for one life in favor of another to be repugnant.”

    I do not disregard one life in favor of another. I favor both lives equally, because they are both life. So do not stoop to insulting me in such a way. If you want to debate then make your point, don’t dodge around it by attacking me.

    “Further, your misrepresentations about the extraordinarily-rare use of lateterm abortion are a false basis for your anti-abortion cause.”

    What misrepresentations? The basis for my anti-abortion cause is my faith, and the fact that I believe all lives are precious.

    Fitness:

    If it is a certain amount of brain activity that makes someone count as a life than everyone in a coma is automatically counted out.

    “The woman’s death is mandated by the court ruling. You are wrong here. If you cared, you would not support the ruling. You can be fully anti-choice, and still oppose the ruling on the grounds it gives no exception for the health of the woman.”

    If I cared? If I did not care do you think that I would be having this conversation with you? Please do not insult me by saying that I do not care. Do I think the ruling was the best answer? No. But if it stops more than a thousand (I have statistics if you want them) late term abortions a year than I am all for it.

    “It is devaluing women, and dehumanizing women. It is this horrid line of thinking that leads to clinic shootings. Do you support those?”

    NO, and one last time please do not stoop to insulting me in such a way. The people who are involved in clinic shootings are far from a pro-life or Christian cause, so do not make the mistake in thinking that they are.
    I might have said things wrong because I in no way devalue or dehumanize women. I am a woman. I believe we need to find answers to pregnancies that are in the most extreme cases. I support the abortion bill because I know it is saving lives.

    Fitness-Your second comment.
    “#24 El Queso
    ???
    The womb is not part of a woman’s body?
    Ah, that’s right, I forget. Some right wingers believe the womb belongs to the husband. You agree with that? How odd. Or does it belong to the fetus? If so, does a woman who gives birth multiple times have to ask the previous children for permission to give their womb to a potential sibling?”

    I really do enjoy your use of sarcasm. The womb may be part of her body, but it was designed to take care of the fetus. It does absolutely nothing for her, and goes away once the baby is born. This is the point that I was trying to make…The fetus is NOT part of her body.

  54. Hi El Queso,

    Sure thing.

    If you do not disregard one life in favor of the other,
    why are you supporting a court ruling that explicitly
    says one life matters more than the other? (Are you
    supporting the court’s decision?)

    “Further, your misrepresentations about the extraordinarily-rare use of lateterm abortion are a false basis for your anti-abortion cause.”

    What misrepresentations? The basis for my anti-abortion cause is my faith, and the fact that I believe all lives are precious.

    So are you saying late term abortions are common, and that your religious
    faith is your basis for this belief?

    I don’t think we are talking about a certain quantity, but
    a certain quality of brain activity. The question is, can
    we determine if a mass of cells and organs is alive or not.
    I think our best shot is looking at the brain. But even
    if we do have a significant gray area in the case of the
    comatose, we still have two very different situations.
    If a person in a coma has effectively zero brain activity,
    and a fetus has the same, the situations are different, since
    we know the person at one point did have proper brain activity,
    whereas we cannot say the same for the fetus. It is the
    difference between being not alive and dead. One must have
    first been alive to be dead.

    It is not meant as an insult, but as an honest question exploring the logical result of stating abortion is murder.
    If abortion really is murder, and it is just to sacrifice
    some women to save many fetuses (which is what the recent
    court ruling does), then isn’t it just to kill doctors
    to keep fetuses from being aborted? I applaud you for not thinking so.

    I believe the bill itself dehumanizes women, because it reduces
    them to baby producing machines. If they fail in that purpose,
    they may be discarded. That is the clear implication of the law.
    That is what I oppose.

    Heh, thanks. Sarcasm can be a lot of fun. How was the womb
    designed? By whom? I also didn’t know the womb
    “goes away” after birth. How do women have more than one birth?

  55. […] impact.  It is the realization that not all arguments are genuine.  Some are escapes.  The recent Supreme Court Case on Abortion is a great example.  The objection from the left generally focuses […]

  56. “So are you saying late term abortions are common, and that your religious
    faith is your basis for this belief?”

    In 1997 .08% of abortions were after 24 weeks, that’s somewhere around 1,500 late term abortions. In 2006 the percentage changed to 1.4%. I doubt I need to give you the number.

    What I was saying is that my faith is the basis for my belief that ALL lives are precious.

    “I don’t think we are talking about a certain quantity, but
    a certain quality of brain activity.”

    While you make a good point with the person in a coma I have another example: the mentally handicapped. I really doubt you view them as not being alive (Hitler may have but I doubt you do). If your response is that babies have no brain activity in the womb then I would really have to disagree.
    During the pregnancy babies start to kick. Most of the time it is random and sparatic. However, they also do it in response to the outside world. Music, jolts, the parents voices. Babies will respond to these things.

    “It is the
    difference between being not alive and dead. One must have
    first been alive to be dead.”

    Do you consider the fetus to be dead then? If you do not view them as being dead then wouldn’t the conclusion be that they are alive?

    “If abortion really is murder, and it is just to sacrifice
    some women to save many fetuses (which is what the recent
    court ruling does), then isn’t it just to kill doctors
    to keep fetuses from being aborted?”

    I do not believe we are “sacrificing” women. I belief we are letting life take its course. As a Christian I believe there is a time for us all to go. Honestly I find it frightening and sad but its life. No matter what God you believe in its just the course of life.
    No, justice can be found in the murdering of doctors. While I may not condone what they were doing, I even more so do not condone the way they died.

    “I believe the bill itself dehumanizes women, because it reduces
    them to baby producing machines. If they fail in that purpose,
    they may be discarded. That is the clear implication of the law.
    That is what I oppose.”

    I believe the bill is trying to save lives. I don’t see the same implication you see. I see children who would have been destroyed growing up and living.

    “How was the womb
    designed? By whom? I also didn’t know the womb
    “goes away” after birth. How do women have more than one birth?”

    It was designed by God. Now you might be thinking of me as a foolish Christian but I have seen nothing to convince me that the world and everything in it was not created by an all powerful and personal God.

    Haha. “Goes away” was probably not the best term for me to use when I know you have a sharp tongue. The womb is always there. What I was trying to say is that it is not always being used to hold a child. It’s use “goes away” until the woman’s next pregnancy.

  57. El Queso:

    So late term abortions are not common, but have increased?
    Interesting. I wonder why? I’d very much like to see numbers
    regarding medical complications during pregnancy…

    Gotcha.

    Heh, well if I did, I can’t now after that hitler
    comment, can I? But yes, you are right.
    But the mentally handicapped do have brain activity.
    If a person was born such that the only aspect
    of the nervous system which was functional
    was the autonomic nervous system, would that
    truly be, well, a person?

    Of course not. Unless the fetus was alive before it started
    developing as a fetus… There is more than just dead
    and alive. This is an odd point, so let me give it another
    run. If a fetus is not dead, it is either alive, or not alive.
    What I am saying is, you cannot kill something unless it is
    alive. If a fetus is never alive in the first place,
    then it is not dead, but it is not alive either.

    It is just not alive.

    Yes, but in “letting life take its course” we are knowingly
    allowing a women to die. Worse, we are actively
    preventing here from recieving medical treatment.
    It isn’t even like we are standing and watching a heart attack
    victim die while doing nothing. We are standing in front
    of the paramedics and blocking them. That is murder.

    Umm, did you mean justice cannot be found (or no justice can
    be found)?

    I know you do not. Look at my example of the heart attack.
    The law will lead to women dying. If it was trying to save
    lives, they would have built in an exception for medical
    complications.

    Why did God have go through the bother of creating everything?
    (and why did he make us so damn leaky?) But this is a topic
    for another discussion I think.

  58. “So late term abortions are not common, but have increased?
    Interesting. I wonder why? I’d very much like to see numbers
    regarding medical complications during pregnancy…”

    I do not have the information, but I doubt the jump is majorly because of complications.

    “It is just not alive.”

    I really need this explained because it makes no sense. If something is not alive and not dead, then what is it? Because of how the fetus is developing the only conclusion I can come to is life. How can something that is “not alive” be growing and developing like a fetus does?

    “Yes, but in “letting life take its course” we are knowingly
    allowing a women to die. Worse, we are actively
    preventing here from recieving medical treatment.
    It isn’t even like we are standing and watching a heart attack
    victim die while doing nothing. We are standing in front
    of the paramedics and blocking them. That is murder.”

    I am not saying lets block the doctors from helping her, because your right that is murder. They should do what they can to save both lives instead of automatically jumping to the destruction of one.

    “No, justice can be found in the murdering of doctors.”

    There should have been no comma there. Sorry, the automatic twitch of the finger to the comma button can be a problem sometimes.

    “Why did God have go through the bother of creating everything?
    (and why did he make us so damn leaky?) But this is a topic
    for another discussion I think.”

    Definately a whole different topic. God did not make us leaky, that was our fault (Adam & Eve, fall of man). Definately another discussion is necessary for this topic.

  59. El Queso,
    With alive, not alive, and dead, it is a question of state.
    Alive: Living
    Dead: Once Alive, Now Not Living.
    Not Alive: Not Living.
    Everything dead is not living, but not everything that
    is not living is dead. Rocks are a great example.
    It is not alive, but it is also not dead.
    “I am not saying lets block the doctors from helping her, because your right that is murder. They should do what they can to save both lives instead of automatically jumping to the destruction of one.”
    And if they can only save one, then you agree we should let
    the doctors proceed?
    Heh, yeah, commas rock.
    Wait wait wait. Are you saying human waste removal is a result
    of the garden? I had never heard that. But the question of humanity’s
    nature I think would be a very interesting topic to explore.

  60. “Alive: Living
    Dead: Once Alive, Now Not Living.
    Not Alive: Not Living.”

    I am sorry, but “not living” still is dead. It makes absolutely no sense. And now you are comparing a fetus to a rock? Let me show you the difference: fetus is growing in the mothers womb and will one day be very similar looking to you or I, a rock starts as a rock, does not develop, stays as a rock.

    “And if they can only save one, then you agree we should let
    the doctors proceed?”

    Not with a partial birth abortion. Take the baby out, try to save it! Do not kill it while it is still in the mother. Remember this debate started with partial birth abortions so lets not lose sight of what that is. At that point the baby has a viable if not definite chance of surving outside of the womb, so I am utterly and completely against destroying it.

    “Are you saying human waste removal is a result
    of the garden?”

    What do you mean by “waste removal”? I do not think you understood what I was saying. The fall of man resulted in man’s physical as well as spiritual death. Thus the reason our bodies are “leaky” as you eloquently put it and why Christ came to die for us.

  61. I am saying something must first have lived to be dead.
    Moving on, the difference is in life vs human life.
    If we are talking biological life, then we need to start
    before conception. If we are talking human life,
    then it is a question of when the fetus shifts from
    a potential human life to an actual human life.
    Leaving aside the problem of describing this as a partial birth
    abortion (which it is not), a late term abortion in a situation
    where only one can be saved precludes your solution.
    If both can be saved, that is one thing.
    But if only one or the other can be saved, you are saying
    absolutely go with the fetus over the mother, correct?
    With regards to “waste removal”, I was referring to “leaky”ness.
    What you appear to be seriously saying is that man’s
    urinary tract is a result of Bibically reported actions in Eden.

  62. “a potential human life to an actual human life.”

    Who decides when a life is potential and an actual life?

    “But if only one or the other can be saved, you are saying
    absolutely go with the fetus over the mother, correct?”

    Incorrect. You go with the life that has the best chance. In most cases the mother.
    I (and to your surprise many Pro-Life Christians like me) have the opinion that you do your best to save each life you can, but in the case where both cannot be saved you save the one with the best chance.

    When you said “leaky” I thought you were speaking metaphoricly, refering to all the health problems people can have. No, I am not saying man’s urinary tract is a result of what happened in the garden. I am saying that why we die, why we can have pain, and why we get sick, is a result from the fall.

  63. 62. elqueso,
    “Who decides when a life is potential and an actual life?”
    Oh, how about scientists?

    “I (and to your surprise many Pro-Life Christians like me) have the opinion that you do your best to save each life you can, but in the case where both cannot be saved you save the one with the best chance.” Great! But recognize that this would not be allowed under the SCOTUS ruling.

    (Ah, gotcha! That makes much more sense!)

  64. So now scientists can say that a fetus is not a human life even when it is days or even moments from birth?

    How does that make any sense?

    It counts when it is out of the womb, but while it is still in the womb it is worthless? This seems a little ridiculous to me.

    I am not entirely ok with the ruling. I have not read as much into it as I would like but I understand that the ruling is trying to do a lot of good.

  65. I think the guy who advocated shooting in the head or genitals those who would take away a woman’s rights and claimed to have an ex-law enforcement point of view killed a woman, a total stranger to him, in New Orleans this week.

    http://blog.nola.com/times-picayune/2007/08/unprovoked_fatal_stabbing_in_b.html

  66. […] 17, 2007 It looks like a man (Erik Traczyk) who left a comment in this thread (#48 and #49) may have fatally stabbed a woman.  (Thanks boyd for pointing this out.)  From the […]

  67. Thanks for pointing this out boyd.

  68. […] Erik William Traczyk in Fitness for the Occasion . Update: Someone made the website owner aware of the comment in Fatal Stabbing and Comments. […]

  69. […] to an active comment thread here, I can safely say how they intend to hand menstruation and miscarriages.  By ignoring them.  […]

  70. very interesting, but I don’t agree with you
    Idetrorce

  71. …. Uh, care to say why?

  72. […] I call it something cute, will you like it? So, I was reading an old post of “Fitness for the Occasion’s“, and I was thinking about how people get up in arms over what we call abortion, or fetuses, […]

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