Sunday, January 22, 2006

Row v Wade Anniversary

This 1st part of this story is mainly for my European readers. Today is the anniversary of the Supreme Court decision Roe vs Wade, which legalized abortion in this country. While in Europe, this subject may draw yawns, but in the US it is ground zero in the culture war and still contested. See here for some really good pictures of a pro-life march in San Francisco. Funny, but none of this was to be found at CNN.com!

Now for the Americans. Dallas has the shameful honor of being the city in which this case was brought and one of our citizens, Norma McCorvey, was Jane Roe . In the 1990's, she converted to Christianity and founded the pro-life ministry Roe No More. Whatever side of the fence you're on, I urge you to give that link a click, as Ms. McCorvey tells her story very powerfully. From just a political angle, you can not understand politics in America if you don't understand the ongoing fight over abortion.


Every day in America, 4000 children are killed by abortion. A Sept. 11th EVERY DAY. Now that's terrorism!

Update: A site with a few pics from the Washington March for Life. Why wasn't I there?! See here.

Update: Zogby Pollsters report on Fox:

"Timely Trend
Public support for abortion is declining: a trend that might explain why abortion advocates are so concerned over the balance of the Supreme Court. According to a new survey from pollster John Zogby, a 52-percent majority favors abortion, representing significantly lower support than in years past. Zogby points to radically different numbers as recent as seven years ago when the pro-choice majority was in the 65-68 percent range.
Another poll conducted by Hamilton College in collaboration with Zogby finds a conservative trend among high school seniors when it comes to abortion. While most students believe Roe v. Wade should be upheld, the majority supported restrictions on abortion such as parental consent. Two-thirds of the students said abortion was always or usually morally wrong."



49 Comments:

At 11:40 PM, Blogger MonicaR said...

Yikes CH! Hot potato.

 
At 1:11 PM, Blogger Chas said...

See Europe! Even The Griz fears this one! Monica, if we can't protect the most defenceless in society, "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness" is meaningless.

 
At 7:15 PM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

"Life, LIBERTY and the pursuit of happiness" is indeed meaningless if the state can commandeer your body and use it to serve others.

The state that can do that crosses a very important line. The state that can ban abortion can also strap you to a table and do anything short of killing you to "save lives".

Not only that, but the state that can ban abortion also has the power to mandate it.

After all, when your very body belongs to the state to do with as it wishes, there are no longer any limits on its power.

 
At 9:10 PM, Blogger Chas said...

But Frank, from the unborn child's point of view, the state CAN commander it's body and kill it in the most gruesome ways! The unborn are being being killed only because of their place of residence. Also the overturning of Roe would only give the power back to the state legislatures to decide. Or is that too democratic??

 
At 9:49 PM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

Chas,

Don't be silly - the *state* can't do that. A woman is not a place of residence either. You may as well say that rapists are only killed in self-defence because of their "place of residence".

Here's the thing Chas - even if a fetus were considered to be a person, it would be self-defence. Don't believe me? Try doing all the things that pregnancy and childbirth does to a woman yourself. You'd be looking at jail time.

Unless she blew you away to stop you, in which case she wouldn't be.

 
At 10:19 PM, Blogger Chas said...

Well Frank, that's a new one on me. A woman can kill her unborn child in self defense!

So a baby isn't a person in the womb, but it is a person when it slides out the vagina.Man, those vaginas are awesome. They give personhood to fetal material as it slides past! That must mean that my penis becomes a person as it slides in, unless the Big V's personhood giving qualities are a one way street!

 
At 11:43 PM, Blogger MonicaR said...

CH - I am on your side honey.

See Frank O'Dwyers arguments? Tiresome. Frank O'Dwyer doesn't even understand the constitutional problem that Roe v. Wade presents on how federal government is supposed to relate to state sovereignty. Frank O'Dwyer doesn't understand the lie that has been sold to the young women of America - Abortion is the *easy* 'choice'. Abortion has no drawbacks, no repercussions. Millions of women who have had abortions will disagree with Frank O'Dwyer.

Nothing like the issue of abortion to bring the Frank O'Dwyers out of the woodwork!

 
At 6:18 AM, Blogger Gary Monro said...

Last year in England and Wales alone we aborted 194,000 babies - part of our year on year escalation of termination. Even (weakly) pro-choice atheists like myself are deeply dismayed by the monumental waste of life and the degradation of a society that so readily discards the inconvenient.

Am I exaggerating if I suggest that abortion is used by some as form of contraception? Well, consider that one-third of England/Wales' abortions were provided to women for whom this was not their first.

The government's roll of shame can be found in the following PDF file [link]

 
At 10:45 AM, Blogger Chas said...

Monica, I figured you were on my side, just a mama bear protecting her cubs! The libs know that they can't return the issue to the state legislatures. They'll be voted down. Lib judges are all they've got to try to keep us in line.

Welcome Gary Monro. Your link was excellent! It's true that a belief in God isn't a prereq. to being abhorred by infanticide within the womb. In web searching I ran across site for Gays for Life, Democrats for Life, Atheists for Life ect.
You're probably "weakly" pro-chioce b/c most people, maybe even me, need that"out" for very small % of abortions where the the life of the mother is gravely in danger, ie tubal pregnancy. But from your link, only 1 or 2% of abortions in England and Wales fit that category.

 
At 1:26 PM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

Chas,

Well Frank, that's a new one on me. A woman can kill her unborn child in self defense!

That's a new one on me also, as it's not what I said. I notice you didn't respond to what I did say, nor even to what you claimed I said.

So a baby isn't a person in the womb, but it is a person when it slides out the vagina.

1000s of years of legal tradition says that a person is human, born and alive. Do you have anything better to offer? Something that you actually believe?

Gary,

Last year in England and Wales alone we aborted 194,000 babies

Wrong on two counts. Firstly, those weren't 'babies', and secondly the number is far larger. Because you fail to take account of all those 'babies' that spontaneously abort.

You know, the same ones that nobody gives a rats ass about.

Am I exaggerating if I suggest that abortion is used by some as form of contraception?

Nope, since you say "some", but the reason you give is nonsense. Contraceptive failure has no memory.

Also, would you be exaggerating if you said "most"? Yes.

Is any of that relevant to abortion rights? Nope.

Monica,

See Monica's arguments?

Me either. She hasn't posted any. Just the usual personal attack.

This, I suppose is *almost* an argument:

"Millions of women who have had abortions will disagree with Frank O'Dwyer."

Argument from popularity. In any case millions of women who have given birth or who have had abortions will disagree with Monica. As do the facts, and as does the law.

Which is exactly why women get to decide this issue for themselves, and can ignore Monica's desire to decide for them.

"Abortion has no drawbacks, no repercussions."

Strawman. The point is that the drawbacks and repercussions of childbirth far outweigh them, certainly for the unwilling.

 
At 3:33 PM, Blogger Alan_McDonald said...

Chas,
As Monica says, this is a hot potato. I will dispense with any levity, and I will attempt to discuss this with you with a view toward finding the as yet unfound middle ground.

 
At 7:06 PM, Blogger Chas said...

Frank O'Dwyer said...
Chas,

Well Frank, that's a new one on me. A woman can kill her unborn child in self defense!

That's a new one on me also, as it's not what I said. I notice you didn't respond to what I did say, nor even to what you claimed I said.

Here's what you said:

"Here's the thing Chas - even if a fetus were considered to be a person, it would be self-defence. Don't believe me? Try doing all the things that pregnancy and childbirth does to a woman yourself. You'd be looking at jail time."
Asked and answered, Frank.

 
At 7:20 PM, Blogger Chas said...

Wait, I didn't answer. The astonishment that someone on the left, or anywhere, could say that even if they concede the fetus to be a child, the trauma of childbirth gives the mother the right to kill it threw me back.

Let's explore. Self defense means that I have a right to defend myself against you. I may use deadly force if I believe my life to be in immediate danger. If someone steps on my foot I can't kill him, even though he caused me pain. Now, what if I were made 8 pounds and transported into a woman. May she kill me b/c she's going to be in pain for me to get out?

The most you can logically say, Frank, is that abortion would be morally permisable if the woman's life were indeed in danger. And a good bit of the pro-life movement might concede it to you.

 
At 8:24 PM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

Wait, I didn't answer.

Thank you. I don't expect you to agree, but I do appreciate your taking the time to think about what I'm saying. Especially on a divisive issue such as this. Seriously, I'm impressed at your intellectual honesty here.

Here's the thing: I'm not talking about a right to kill.

Here's what I am saying:

People, including pregnant women, have a right to use reasonable force to defend themselves from harm. They have a right to do what it takes to end that harm. AND NO MORE.

Sorry for the shouting, but that last part matters.

Pregnancy and childbirth always causes harm. For the woman, it is always the more dangerous of the two options. By a factor of 10 on mortality rates alone.

(Yep, many women will choose it willingly anyway. But willingly is another word that matters - it's the difference between sex and rape.)

Now, what if I were made 8 pounds and transported into a woman. May she kill me b/c she's going to be in pain for me to get out?

In my opinion she may do whatever is the least harmful thing (to herself firstly, and you secondly) that it takes to get you out, at any time and for any reason. Why? Because neither you nor anyone else has the right to demand the continued use of her body. No, not even if she invited you in. Not even if she signed an otherwise legally binding contract - it would not be enforceable.

Which means that if she can get you out and you can survive on your own, and this can happen without any additional risk to her, then no she may not kill you. She gets to end her pregnancy when she wants, you don't die and nobody should be able to complain about that. The only right involved is to end her pregnancy. That's it.

But if the only way to get you out without causing additional risk to her means you die, and she wants you out, then you die.

And remember, that's when we're imagining that we're talking about a real walking, talking person. Something which plenty of people reasonably believe is not the case for the early term abortions which are the majority of all induced abortions.

By way of contrast there is never any reasonable doubt or controversy whatsoever that the woman involved is a person.

 
At 9:47 PM, Blogger Alan_McDonald said...

Chas,

Let me begin the discussion by asking you, What would you change? I know that you are not happy with the status quo, so I am interested in what specific changes would be good, in your opinion.

 
At 10:08 PM, Blogger Chas said...

Frank, I haven't forgotten about you, but I've got to think those things over.

Alan, I wish the Dems meant it when they wanted abortion legal, safe, and RARE.

That's what I want, abortion being a rarity, not a "right" not the cornerstone of feminism, but a rarity. That's the common ground.

Now how in the hell do you upload pics from the web?? Every time I try, I get that big blank square with the little X in the corner that if you click on it the pic comes up. I can't be this stupid. (Don't answer that!!!)

 
At 11:01 PM, Blogger Alan_McDonald said...

Now how in the hell do you upload pics from the web??

You don't. What I have done on my blog to include a picture that is already on the web is to point to its current web location. There are probably good tutorials on the web to explain how-to, but here's my $0.02 worth.

The HTML code for including an image in your web page is
{IMG SRC="URL"}
where { is < and } is >
and URL is the Image Location.

For example, if you wanted to show in your original post one of the pictures from the pro-life march,
you would code it as:

and insert it soemwhere in your text.
{IMG SRC="http://mommylife.net/IMG_1472.JPG"}
REMEMBER {=< and }=>
As our SysAdmin used to say, Hope that helps.

 
At 11:29 PM, Blogger MonicaR said...

1 - Frank O'Dwyer is in Europe, I believe, where a law abiding citizen's human right to defend themselves is not recognized by the state. Any reference to 'right to defend' will probably be skewed in some way. I see that it is for Frank O'Dwyer.

2 - Frank O'Dwyer does not see the constitutional dilemma presented by Roe v Wade. It is nothing and a 'straw man'. Interesting.

3 - Frank O'Dwyer does not care that the proponents of abortion lie.

Do you see why I am tired of this CH? You can try to deal reasonably with a Frank O'Dwyer in regard to this issue, but it is a wasted expenditure of valuable energy.

You accused me of being fearful though - so I had to demonstrate that it is not fear on my part that kept me from entering the fray. It is the cacophony of the Frank O'Dwyers of the world that I find sooooooooo UTTERLY tiresome.

 
At 11:39 PM, Blogger Chas said...

The Grizzly Mama fears nothing. Not even the Italian Stallion :)

I'm not sure where old Frank comes from. I know his aurgument must be wrong, but it's taking me a bit to pin it down! Also, Monica, great Euro-weenie post! You were right though, HOT POTATO!

Alan, thanks for the picture help. I'm much more at home with my granny reading glasses and a 100 year old book. But it's EVOLVE or DIE!

 
At 11:44 PM, Blogger MonicaR said...

Oh! To upload a picture to be displayed as a part of your entry do this:

If you find a pic on the web you like, right click it and go down to 'properties' and click. Select 'save picture as' and then the computer will ask you where to save the pic. I usually save the pic in the 'my pictures' folder on my hard drive. Give it a file name and click 'save'. The picture will be downloaded to your computer.

(I check to see if something is copyrighted - if so then I will not do this. Even if not - I want to credit the source of the pic.)

THEN - when creating a new entry from blogger you will see a little square box with what looks like a picture of a green hill with blue sky and when you run your cursor over it it will say 'add image'. This is after you have chosen the 'create' under the posting tab and have the blank title bar, link bar and field where your text will go.

Just click on that and you will be walked through choosing the image from the proper folder on your hard drive. Make your 'choices' (ha ha - no pun intended!) and you're in business.

Listen - I use the 'edit html' tab when creating entries - but there is another and you will see the tab called 'compose mode'. Two tabs in the upper right of the create new entry box. In 'edit html' mode you can copy and paste that html that is laid there for the image you uploaded - and move that html to the spot that you want it in your text. In 'compose mode' the picture will actually show up there real nice - and to move it around is a bit nervewracking for me. Just click on that picture and drag it up or down - it won't look like it's doing anything at first but then you will see that, indeed, it has moved to where you drug it.

After you work with it a bit you will find the way that you like best.

Hope this wasn't too long - take care!

 
At 11:51 PM, Blogger MonicaR said...

Oh! You saw that 'Italian Stallion' thing then?

I love to read too. With computers I'd prefer to deal with code. I'm very annoyed with this windows crap and I dig my heels in at having to do it. It's hard to change at my age. LOL!

 
At 11:53 PM, Blogger MonicaR said...

right click it and go down to 'properties' and click.

WRONG! THE ABOVE IS WRONG!

When right clicking - just go to 'save picture as'. Don't worry about 'properties'.

I am so ever humbly sorry...

 
At 2:28 AM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

Monica,

Frank O'Dwyer is...

Frank O'Dwyer does not...

Frank O'Dwyer does not care...

Monica, you don't speak for me. I will simply delete that crap from now on.

Also, the condescending tone you attempt only works when you're smart. You're not.

Similarly the no-BS tough mama persona requires honesty. Repeatedly lying about people undermines that.

Now, if you can't manage any of that, then at least learn to read for comprehension.

 
At 2:42 AM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

Alan, I wish the Dems meant it when they wanted abortion legal, safe, and RARE.

Chas, everyone wants that.

That's what I want, abortion being a rarity, not a "right" not the cornerstone of feminism, but a rarity.

For most people those two concepts are not mutually exclusive.

Where people can have common cause is in tackling unwanted pregnancies, and working to removing the roadblocks from the paths of those women who actually want to continue their pregnancies.

Sadly there is a lot of ideology and fixed ideas to be encountered around that, and little desire from the loud voices in either camp to simply find out what works.

You might be interested to know that I used to be 'pro-life', by the way. I understand where you are coming from far better than you think. I spent a long time arguing the other side of this.

 
At 6:03 AM, Blogger Gary Monro said...

Part of Frank's justification for abortion is that he regards the woman as acting defensively. He regards a person as having a right to self-defence - an argument I for one don't disagree with.

But one defends oneself against an attacker. Pregnancy might carry numerous risks to the mother but it is not an attack on her so the self-defence argument falls a little flat.

It seems the pro-abortion argument requires the rearrangement of certain realities in order to sustain itself.

The first is the denial that the baby is a baby. I've seen extraordinary attempts by others to 'prove' the fetus isn't a baby - as if that's the crux of the whole debate.

The second is Frank's own (or, at least, I've only heard Frank express it) namely that pregnancy is so dangerous and such an attack on the woman that the poor soul aborts in order to save her life. The idea is that it is she who is the victim of the wicked thing being sucked from her womb. Additionally, the implied suggestion is that this is the reason most or many women abort. I've never heard anyone claim this as a reason for their abortion so I am guessing it's rarely the real reason. Babies are hard work and, to some, better off dead.

Frank also makes much of nature's abortions. But nature is an unthinking process which undoes its work when it gets it wrong. Nature is not a social being, imbued with feeling and reason, living as a part of a
wider social and cultural set-up where life actually is, to differing extents and in differing ways, valued.

The comparison - natural abortions (which can occur to women who did not know they were even pregant) with chosen ones - is an attempt to dismiss all this and, in turn, make those who despair at the habit of terminating look two-faced for only caring about the abortions humans can do something about.

If I met a pro-choicer who said, simply, "life isn't special, it's a selfish and cruel process, most of us are in it for what we can get out of it and I support the right of people to be selfish and cruel if it suits their ends" then, disagree as I might with his view of life, his argument has going for it simplicy, intelligence and some resonance with the darker facts of human behaviour. Frank's often clever arguments (he has a great blog, by the way) require that we simplify, distort and ignore our way to his stated point of view.

Chas,

Thanks for the welcome.

And you're right - there must be an 'out' for those who are genuinely at risk from giving birth (ie more at risk than the usual risks faced by all mothers-to-be), those raped and, I must say, those for whom giving birth would be such an emotional trauma (really traumatic rather than, 'oh dear, I can't go nightclubbing anymore, my life is ruined!' )that they would be ineffective parents and, possibly, seriously damaged mentally.

It leaves me with the difficulty of enforcement - I don't know how easy it is to judge who will be genuinely mentally damaged by giving birth - although that practicality should be the subject of a different discussion.

 
At 11:29 AM, Blogger Alan_McDonald said...

Chas,

You say that abortion being a rarity is what you want. What must change, in your view, for that to happen? If abortion being a rarity is the "ends" then what are the "means" of getting there? This may touch on the "practicality" that Gary mentioned, but I don't think that is inappropriate for this discussion.

 
At 11:53 AM, Blogger Chas said...

Excellent discussion everybody!

Monica, Thanks for the tips on the pics. I'm gonna work on it some more.

Frank, When you say everyone wants abortions to be rare, I wish that were the case. In the States, the raison d'etre of the feminest movement is unrestricted abortion in all senses, even partial birth abortion, where the child is certainly viable. You don't hear of NOW having any sort of adoption program.

Gary, I think you're right in that the pro-choice position has to say that the fetus is not a child, not even human, or their whole position sounds barbaric. Now that science can show us pictures of the fetus sucking it's thumb and smiling ect, our eyes tell us what the courts deny.

 
At 12:01 PM, Blogger Chas said...

Good question Alan. I think that Roe v Wade must be overturned and returned to the states that will write more restrictive laws, but leaving "outs" for the rape, incest, true danger to health of mother. That last one is the abuseble one, in that who decides "true" dangers? In England, you can only have one at a NHS hospital, but that's not our way.

 
At 12:24 PM, Blogger Alan_McDonald said...

Chas,

Some states enacting more restrictive laws is what I get from your comment.

It sounds like a pre-Roe scenario where those who choose less restriction can "vote with their feet" and get themselves from, say Texas to say New York. This is, I think, what Irish women do now by going to England. The only difference I detect is that you are not expecting an outright ban, although some states could be more restrictive than others.

Do you favor an expansion of contraceptive availability, preventive sex education and expanded child care facilities to go along with the restrictions on abortion?

 
At 12:33 PM, Blogger Chas said...

Alan, I would favor all of those things you mentioned as well as enhancing tax credits to those couples wishing to adopt.

Now I believe I'm right when I say that 40% of abortions are by black women, who make up 7% of the population. These abortion restrictions would mean an increase in the black population. That seems like something Dems would want!

That being said, it's difficult to legislate all these things when having a baby out of wedlock no longer has a social stigma.

 
At 3:38 PM, Blogger City Troll said...

One thing that everyone must take into consideration is Franko is a nutcase, and thats the consensus opinion of the majority of the blogs that he has visited. He tends to go off on his blog about ATW and those posts were anything but reasonable.

 
At 3:44 PM, Blogger Alan_McDonald said...

Troll,
Wouldn't you agree that your comment on Frank was a tad ad hominem? Any thoughts on Roe v Wade?

Chas,
I just now saw the pun in your title. Is that from the old joke about Bush (that he thought row versus wade were two ways to get across a river)?

 
At 1:29 AM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

Gary,

But one defends oneself against an attacker. Pregnancy might carry numerous risks to the mother but it is not an attack on her so the self-defence argument falls a little flat.

Of course there is no attacker, since no other person is involved. The attack is from the "pro-life", who would use the state and the foetus as their proxy.

Should they succeed, it is a demonstrable fact that a large number of women will suffer serious harm and a number of women will die.

It seems the pro-abortion argument requires the rearrangement of certain realities in order to sustain itself.

Untrue and deeply ironic, since it is impossible to make a 'pro-life' argument without appealing to a demonstrable falsehood, a contradiction, utter nonsense, hypocrisy or a perversion of morality. I've seen pro-lifers get up to 6 falsehoods into a single sentence.

For example, you say a foetus is morally equivalent to a baby, then you would make a rape exception. Last I checked it is not acceptable to kill a baby that is the product of rape. If it is then why is it not acceptable to kill anyone - a 30 year old - that is the product of rape?

The rape exception is either pure political expediency (in which case it is completely contemptible), or it points to a desire to punish women for having sex (ditto).

If the rest of your argument were correct it would be utterly, UTTERLY immoral to have a rape exception.

Frank also makes much of nature's abortions. But nature is an unthinking process which undoes its work when it gets it wrong.

And that is why billions are spent on healthcare. Cancer is an unthinking process but people would move heaven and earth rather than let it run its course.

Nothing comparable is seen for "nature's abortions" - because nobody REALLY believes those are 'babies', hence they do not actually give a rats ass.

People show more respect for a child's pet goldfish than 'nature's abortions'. You'll see people give a pet a burial, but never will you hear of them burying a tampon that supposedly contains the body of that same child's brother or sister.

It's almost as if they are making it up when they say those are 'babies', isn't it?

 
At 1:40 AM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

That being said, it's difficult to legislate all these things when having a baby out of wedlock no longer has a social stigma.

Amazing. You want unmarried women to carry to term instead of aborting - and then you want to stigmatise them for doing so?

 
At 9:39 AM, Blogger Jo said...

I am tempted to contribute something of my own personal experience in relation to this topic but am very reluctant to do so.

My own view is that abortion is not always morally wrong, but that its banning would be counterproductive.

I find it sickening that it is regarded by some as an alternative form of contraception, but equally I am perplexed and angered by those who oppose both abortion and contraception, as does the Catholic Church.

I believe that prevention is better than the "cure" which I know is a terrible way to describe an abortion, but the terribleness of that act is clearly not enough top put millions of women off very year.

To some degree our opposition to abortion is a characteristic of the "softer" times we live in. Even a relatively advanced civilisation like the ancient Greeks left new-born but defective babies to die on the mountainside - they lacked the knowledge and *skill* to perform abortions but they realised, like many today, that not every pregnancy is wanted, nor is every child a wanted child.

Those of us that survived preganancy - indeed, have produced further life - and can reflect on the moment of these issues should count ourselves extremely lucky. We will not pass this way again.

 
At 10:32 AM, Blogger Gary Monro said...

Frank,

You side-stepped my point.

You have defended abortion in the past on the grounds that the fetus is a parasite and that the woman is acting in self-defence. You've then gone on to list all the downsides of carrying to term - even totting up the pounds and pence cost of feeding and clothing the child.

Regarding nature's abortions, it's not that nobody gives a 'rat's arse' about them but one assumes that since many occur before the woman even knows she's pregnant and the rest (a degree of guesswork coming up) probably weren't expected to abort we are fairly helpless. In those cases where we know the woman has a propensity to miscarry my understanding is that doctors move hell and high water to prevent miscarriage.

The point about a woman aborting a fetus created through an act of rape is a difficult and troubling one. The contradiction you point out more or less holds water. The reality - for me, at least - is that there's no absolutely right or wrong answer (either pro-choice or pro-life) because life refuses to agree to the requirements of tidiness we place on it.

Whether abortion is killing a 'baby' or not has not really been my point - it's been yours and other's and I've responded in kind but I'm not hung up on the name. Abortion kills a life - whatever we call it.

And aborting a baby/fetus/whatever because the distraught mother was raped is killing a life. But I agree it should be allowed. Horrible as it is.

 
At 10:40 AM, Blogger Jo said...

Abortion kills a life - is true. But isnt it strange that the constituency which is anti-abortion also is often pro-war?

The difference is that the victims of the latter have personalities, familes, history, etc...

 
At 2:03 PM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

Abortion kills a life

So does lunch.

And aborting a baby/fetus/whatever because the distraught mother was raped is killing a life. But I agree it should be allowed. Horrible as it is.

Conspicuous by its absence is any reason why this should be so.

Or indeed any reason why you should have any say whatsoever.

The bottom line is this:
"A woman does not belong to you, your church, the state, or the fetus, and you have no right to command her servitude. She is not your slave." - Ray Fischer

What makes you think there are any circumstances at all where you or anyone else gets to command women to support what YOU think is "a life"? While you remain free to allow people to die whenever you wish.

You have defended abortion in the past on the grounds that the fetus is a parasite and that the woman is acting in self-defence. You've then gone on to list all the downsides of carrying to term - even totting up the pounds and pence cost of feeding and clothing the child.

Only in rebuttal to the notion that abortion is done for 'convenience' - plus that is a caricature of the argument I've used ('parasite' is your word, not mine).

 
At 10:45 PM, Blogger Chas said...

Welcome Jo. Your post of 9:39 is really quite touching. You have been near to a personal expericence here, and I share your reluctance in divulging any details. Something so near to the heart should not be made internet fodder.

I share your view that abortion does take the life of a human being and that someone would use this as a means of contraception is aweful.
Either people are not educated to the reality of the situation, or our "Athenean" societies have done too good a job of selling this "Spartan" solution, which I think only hurts women in the long run.

Finally, I say to Frank, that if everytime a pro-lifer tries to compromise, say on the rape question, you can't jump out and say "Ah ha! Hypocrite! We're not being hypocritical, we're just trying to end the vast majority of abortions, by conceding the rare cases.

 
At 1:03 AM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

Finally, I say to Frank, that if everytime a pro-lifer tries to compromise, say on the rape question, you can't jump out and say "Ah ha! Hypocrite! We're not being hypocritical, we're just trying to end the vast majority of abortions, by conceding the rare cases.

I never said it is hypocrisy - it is political expediency at best, and a sickening insight into real motivations at worst.

THINK about what you are saying. You would not trade real walking talking children's lives for other real walking talking children's lives on the basis that one set was the product of rape and there were only (say) 10,000 of them instead of 10,000,000. This simply would not be on the table if anyone believed these were children.

Similarly if there were a house down the road which you genuinely believed was committing infanticide in the numbers you claim, then you and I would not be calmly discussing it on the internet and marching with pithy slogans on placards. We would be down there tearing down the walls with our bare hands and fingernails if necessary.

Instead you've let yourself be fooled into bartering and trading what SOMEONE ELSE claims are other human lives. All in order to serve what is at bottom an extremely perverse notion of morality with little regard for truth, no regard for science, and contempt for life.

I'm not impressed. Just as I'm not impressed when the pro-life offer proposals that will demonstrably harm and kill walking, talking women in order to save a 'life'. Even when it WON'T save that life, and even that 'life' is no bigger than a grain of salt. Even when that 'life' lacks pretty much everything normal people and the law would regard as essential to being a person.

 
At 6:36 AM, Blogger Jo said...

I am sure not many here who are pro-life would adopt some of the shock tactics such as sending pictures of aborted babies to pro-choice groups or parading placards showing such images on our streets.

I recently encountered such a demonstration on a Belfast street, outside an office offering contraception and other advice. I had to shield my 6 year olds eyes from the images and had anyone tried to hand me a leaflet I would have been extremely angry with them. Fortunately for them, they didnt, but looked suitably abashed. The stupidity of preventing young women seeking contraception advice, let alone dealing with an unwanted pregnancy was appalling but I couldnt engage their closed minds even had I wanted to...

Such mentality is not far removed from those who would align their rifle sights on a doctor suspected of performing abortions.

 
At 7:21 AM, Blogger Gary Monro said...

What makes you think there are any circumstances at all where you or anyone else gets to command women to support what YOU think is "a life"? While you remain free to allow people to die whenever you wish.

Calm down Frank. This is a discussion, not a meeting of the Supreme Soviet. Nobody's commanding anybody to do anything. We're exchanging ideas.

And you did actually refer to a fetus as a parasite - on my old blog, I believe. Haven't found the evidence though but I do remember responding to the suggestion.

 
At 8:59 AM, Blogger Chas said...

See Frank, you're doing it again. Because I'm not blowing up abortion clinics, (that would save lives) i must not believe in my cause.

 
At 9:15 AM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

Nobody's commanding anybody to do anything. We're exchanging ideas.

And I'm exchanging the idea that commanding the use of someone else's body to support a 'life' is incompatible with the laws of a free society.

You are exchanging the idea that you will 'allow' abortion in the case of rape.

But since slavery was abolished some time ago, what you would allow is neither here nor there.

And you did actually refer to a fetus as a parasite - on my old blog, I believe. Haven't found the evidence though but I do remember responding to the suggestion.

I doubt it was from me. I can't imagine saying that except as an analogy or in rebuttal to something else. It sounds more like a pro-life rant, as in "so you're saying a fetus is a parasite, then?"...typically in response to any hint that an embryo might not exactly the same thing as a newborn.

 
At 9:30 AM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

See Frank, you're doing it again. Because I'm not blowing up abortion clinics, (that would save lives) i must not believe in my cause.

Blowing up abortion clinics wouldn't save lives, Chas. Only in the parallel universe of the 'pro-life' could anyone possibly imagine that it would.

I'm sure you believe in your cause. I just don't believe you have thought it through, and I think your view is totally distorted by a lot of BS propaganda you've been fed.

You said yourself that some of the arguments that I'm making are totally new to you. Yet they are as old as the hills. If you're being given an honest picture then why haven't you heard them? None of the arguments you are making are new to me.

You've also referred to 'partial birth' abortion, and I'm sure that the information you've got on that and is 'pro-life' fiction.

 
At 9:35 AM, Anonymous Frank O'Dwyer said...

I am sure not many here who are pro-life would adopt some of the shock tactics such as sending pictures of aborted babies

Those aren't pictures of "aborted babies", Jo. For early-term abortions, such pictures would be impossible, nor would they have the desired impact.

I suggest you do some research into how those pictures are obtained.

About as convincing as this:
www.samanthasdolls.com

 
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