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Anonymous
It's even less clear that Bonhoeffer would have been justified had he tried to take out an unarmed S.S. officer in his church (which would be much more analogous to what Scott Roeder did).
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TooManyJens
I think an important line to draw is between condemning an unjust practice, and using dehumanizing or demonizing language against the people engaged in the practice. As pro-lifers, we know that some kinds of language make it easier to persuade people that it's acceptable to kill this or that group of human beings. We should never use that kind of language ourselves, and should challenge other purported pro-lifers who do use it.
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joshbrahm
This is a good point. We have some posts on language and labels in the abortion debate here: http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/tag/languagelabels/
I think you would enjoy them. :)
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wiffle
Interesting read. I think what's missing for me is context.
I have talked with people whom I would accurately describe as pro-abortion, not pro-choice. Most fence sitters I would call pro-choice. I think it's unwise and inaccurate to call abortion advocates anything for what they are. I also would not concede abortionist for the reason. I will not put those who make a living killing in the same category as a practioner whose profession it is healing for the sake of politeness. It is inaccurate and unfair to real medical practioners.
So I'll definitely give you some softer terminology in the right context, but it has to be that and not sacrifice the truth on feel good vibes. :(
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Crystal
What terms would you use, then? Because I don't want to cause unnecessary offence when I'm trying to reach out to or have a civil conversation with someone but at the same time I can't call it a choice, or even soften the language. I presently use "advocates for legal abortion" but do you personally think that's too soft?
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wiffle
Anytime you add syllables in the English language, you soften your tone and make it more formal. I'd use the word that fit the context, really. If article was for general publication/audience I'd probably use pro-choice. If it were either address to abortion advocates or a pro-life site, I might use pro-abortion or abortion advocate. In comments like this, I would use pro-abort or pro-abortion because those conversations are a bit strange and tinged from my point of view. On the hand, I do my level best to avoid them, too.
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Crystal
Upvote.
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Cynical_Meliorist
You get my upvote based solely on your picture, as well as having a reasonable point of view.
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reidda
Did/Does SPLC have board members who have justified the killing of abortion doctors like CMP does?
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Anonymous
One of CMP's board members said that he thinks abortion should be a capital crime. He has repeatedly condemned vigilantism, and nobody associated with CMP has ever advocated for it. I don't see how this is relevant though, because he made that statement in a book most people have never heard of (not in any of the widely circulated videos that people are trying to blame for this rampage).
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joannawahlund
Thinking abortion should be a capital crime (presumably in which abortionists would be given due process of law) =/= justifying the vigilante killing of abortion doctors.
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Crystal
I want to thank you for taking me up on my offer. I know we haven't spoken much to each other but I would consider us friends despite that and I hope you feel the same way.
I have been giving serious thought to Bair's questions and I am going to give her the same answer I will give you, as I believe you would have read our back-and-forth on this question:
The PL movement isn't the only movement that prefers peace to violence.
Let's take a look at a few other movements in history.
William Wilberforce:
WW sought to abolish slavery in England. Because he was a politician he had a serious advantage in ensuring that the laws would be passed that he wanted. He fought for years to make the slave trade, then slavery illegal. Never once did he or his fellow abolitionists advocate for violence in the form of blowing up the slave ships or shooting all the slave traders throughout England. Because of his efforts England peacefully outlawed slavery in the early part of the 19th century. Watch Amazing Grace and other documentaries to learn more about his work.
Alice Paul:
AP was a feminist who fought for the right of women to vote throughout all of America. She and her fellow suffragettes were more radical than the older ones but both sets of suffragettes condemned the kind of violence that some in England were committing. She said "I don't consider myself above the law in any circumstance". As she felt that the older suffragettes were too weak and incremental she and her fellow suffragettes broke away to form a new group, which stood campaigning peacefully with signs outside President Wilson's office. They were falsely charged and put in prison, one by one, but none because of violence AFAIK. Eventually the President pardoned them and they were released, and women got the vote. Not once did I see AP and her friends committing violence, or campaigning for its use. If you want to watch a drama about AP's work you can view Iron-Jawed Angels or several documentaries dealing with the subject.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
MLK was an Afro-American pastor who lived during the 1960s. He himself had suffered the disgrace of segregation, the KKK, and other such indignities. He rose to prominence in the Afro Civil Rights Movement and nearly single-handedly led the charge to defeat discrimination against nonwhite people. He organised his followers onto peaceful marches and they held rallies fighting for their rights. Although he recognised that rioting was the language of the oppressed he did not condone the black people using violence to fight against white privilege and oppression. He was shot dead by an attacker using the racial atmosphere to justify his violent hatred. To learn more about MLK Jr I recommend Selma and Boycott, plus documentaries.
These three people and their friends helped make slavery, suppression against women, and anti-nonwhite discrimination illegal in England and the United States. None of them advocated for violence but rather for peace. They sought legal means to ensure that they would get what they wanted, and refused to demonise their opponents, yet were not willing to compromise on what they wanted and therefore achieved their goals. We have people like them to thank for this world being a better place to live. If people who believe that prolifers are inconsistent by fighting for peace and would therefore be silently condoning nazism and slavery, think again. Because history has proved that peace in a democratic society is the best means of achieving help for the oppressed. Yet if such people are right, WW was pro-slavery through not shooting slave traders; AP was anti-feminist by refusing to barge into the President's office, hold a gun to his head, and demand the vote for women; and MLK Jr's words about peace and tolerance were just a bunch of hogwash because deep down he wanted blacks to stay "in their place". Such assertions are insulting on the characters of those who fought peacefully for what was right. I agree that the PL movement needs significant reform in language in that we shouldn't demonise our opponents, and in violence, but at the same time being peaceful does not mean we are being best buddies with Hitler and Jefferson Davis.
People lie about abortion and what it is. We are doing it somewhat right in this way - we are changing people's minds, exposing wickedness to the public mind, and changing hearts and minds through stirring up public outrage which will eventually pass into laws and moral reforms. What I have described is one good way among many nonviolent ways to handle the situation while we are living in a free, peaceful society.
Just my two cents.
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joannawahlund
I agree 100%!
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Crystal
You have permission to use my paragraph if you will find it helpful :)
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Anonymous
Precisely my point.
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joannawahlund
My response was a follow-up to yours (and a response to Reid), not a response to you. Sorry for the confusion. :)
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LoveTheLeast8
That is factually incorrect. CMP does not a board member with such views.
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acyutananda
Thanks for all the thinking from both of you.
I would like to say a few things, but I'm under a lot of time pressure right now, so you will be partially spared that word count. Here is what I can type (or copy and paste) in the time that I have:
  1. It seems to me that similarly to the way you can argue, "Scott Roeder . . . may have intended to do good, but he was absolutely wrong," I could argue, "The US has an impressive-seeming constitution and yes, it is theoretically possible to change unjust laws, but all the workings of power and money, and the molding of public opinion -- the 'manufacture of consent' -- are a much deeper subject, and those glittery democratic institutions are of little comfort to the babies."
  2. Under the earlier blog post you have linked to, I had commented --
    "Thanks for your post.
As long as America is not [led] by a despot who changes our entire system of government, there are other ways to save lives and end abortion without using violence or other illegal or fear-inducing tactics like kidnapping. And that matters. If we can end abortion by non-violent means, then we are morally obligated to pursue those non-violent means.
"If many unborn lives could be saved without violence by the pro-life American states seceding from the Union, shouldn't they do that?"
-- and Josh Brahm had replied -- Interesting question. I would need to be convinced that the pro-life states seceding would actually save more lives. It seems to me that it would have been easier to end slavery without the Southern states seceding. That's partially why they seceded. I think it would be easier to abolish abortion without seceding, but I'm open to a good argument
-- and I had offered what seemed to me to be a good argument --
"I don't think of secession first and foremost in terms of lives saved in the short term. I think of it first and foremost in terms of moral integrity. If Kansans, for example, are pro-life and would be free to live, if they wished, under laws that protect unborn life, and opted not to do so, how much of their moral integrity on that issue would they preserve, and what message would they send to others?"
I might also have raised a question about the "without the Southern states seceding" analogy, since at that time it was the states with the institution we consider wrong (slavery) that seceded, whereas I was not proposing that in the present the states with the institution we consider wrong (abortion) should secede.
Anyway, I would still love a response about moral integrity.
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acyutananda
If under a despotic political structure there is a horrible outcome such that every day we are face to face with person A and see that he is about to kill innocent persons B, C, D, E, F, G . . . , and under a nominally democratic or even genuinely democratic political structure there is a horrible outcome such that every day we are face to face with person A and see that he is about to kill innocent persons B, C, D, E, F, G . . . , I'm not convinced that it is morally permissible to kill person A in the one situation and not in the other. At least I wouldn't say that that is "clearly" so. Certainly the difference in regime would be little consolation to persons B, C, D, E, F and G (though I don't say that the lives of those people are the only factor to consider). Framed just in this simple way, it might even be morally obligatory to kill A in both situations.
I think better arguments for not killing abortionists might be these:
  1. Your pragmatic argument -- under the present situation, it [Edit: (killing abortionists)] backfires as a tactic.
  2. I don't think that abortion in the US is as horrible as was the Holocaust in Europe, even though the numbers have been bigger. a) The mindset has not been as evil. Some of the 60 million abortions have been totally justified. Some have been morally murky. The desperation of many women has reduced their culpability, and even that of some abortionists, far below that of the Nazis. And b) due to women's bodily autonomy, the case for society's right to intervene forcibly on behalf of B, C, D, E, F and G is not overwhelming but near the borderline in the first place; so the case for a vigilante's right to intervene violently on behalf of B, C, D, E, F and G is still less strong.
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uninvolved_1
The political structure that doesn't allow for peaceful means of reform is not pragmatic for social change.
So I think the point about political structure and pragmatism basically go hand-in-hand.
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acyutananda
Sorry, I don't quite understand. What you appear to be saying is:
My point killing abortionists backfires (my point about pragmatism)
-- and --
my point any kind of political structure may possibly produce a horrible outcome that will justify drastic actions (my point about political structure)
-- basically go hand-in-hand.
Is that what you're saying?
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uninvolved_1
The reason violent reform is not pragmatic is because the political structure hasn't closed down avenues of peaceful reform.
If we were in a world where a regime has closed down all avenues of peaceful reform, then there is no alternative but to be violent. Pragmatism.
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acyutananda
Now I understand you, thanks.
I would agree that the formal structure has not closed down all avenues of peaceful reform of Roe v. Wade. But is structure the only consideration in regard to possible justification for violent reform? No structure is infallible. What if the individuals on the Supreme Court are incorrigible cases and clearly destined to remain that way for another 40 years or more? And then let's imagine that those individuals not only sanction unrestricted abortion, but sanction Auschwitz all over again -- all within the formal structure. It's not impossible. The only thing that might make Auschwitz impossible would be the goodness of the citizenry, not any structure.
Or if I've misunderstood your "closed down all avenues of peaceful reform" and you're referring not only to the formal structure narrowly, but to the whole reigning situation, well, how soon do you see that situation improving?
Please remember that I oppose violent reform, in relation to abortion, for my own reasons, mentioned earlier.
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uninvolved_1
I never meant to say that political structure is the only justification for violent or peaceful reform. I agree with your points about pragmatism.
I partly agree with your point about the holocaust being worse but I think in a different way. My concern with your reasons is this from another comment I made to you which you asked me to post here: I would say the abortion is fundamentally as bad as the holocaust. If you're saying it's not because of the intent on the part of the perpetrators then I would ask if the badness of the holocaust really turns on that by imagining a counterfactual where it's true that the eradication of the "undesirables" in the holocaust would lead to a great many goods equal in worth to women's reproductive freedom, and the Nazis intended that. I don't see how that makes a difference.
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acyutananda
First a clarification. Your writing --
"a great many goods equal in worth to women's reproductive freedom"
-- makes me think that this clarification may be necessary. When I wrote --
"due to women's bodily autonomy, the case for society's right to intervene forcibly on behalf of B, C, D, E, F and G is not overwhelming but near the borderline in the first place; so the case for a vigilante's right to intervene violently on behalf of B, C, D, E, F and G is still less strong"
-- did you understand me to mean --
"the value/worth of women's liberty gained through abortion (enabling them to do this or that with their lives) helps to offset morally the harm done by their killing their unborn children B, C, D, E, F and G"
-- ?
That's not what I meant. I meant more or less:
"Though I advocate unborn child-protection laws, I do not do so without feeling seriously disturbed by the fact that preventing abortion forces a woman to undergo at least some temporary loss of physical well-being, some pain and some risk, all of which her bodily rights, on the one hand, tend to entitle her to avoid. I think that the case for society's right to enact such laws (i.e., prevent abortion and save lives on the other hand) is not overwhelming but near the borderline. Moreover, it would be understandable, at least, if a doctor sympathized with a woman and wanted to perform an abortion. For all these reasons I think people should be much more reluctant to bump off numerous abortionists than they should have been to bump off Hitler. While killing anyone is problematic, in some circumstances it's necessary; I think evil persons doing wrong are more easily expendable than good persons doing wrong."
And then, as I mentioned, there is the fact that under the present situation, killing abortionists backfires as a tactic.
But, as also mentioned, I would NOT be completely, absolutely dissuaded from considering countenancing violence simply by the thought "On paper, the voters of the US (who nobody believes are right all the time in the first place) can elect a president and a Senate who, after waiting enough years for a certain justice or two to die off, can give us a pro-life Supreme Court."
One reason that even that possibility is only "on paper" is that we might find that a pro-life presidential candidate would also be a candidate likely to get us into World War 3 or ignore science in some disastrous way. But that would be another big topic of discussion that I don't propose here.
You have contended that "the intent on the part of the perpetrators" doesn't make a difference;" now I have said, "While killing anyone is problematic, in some circumstances it's necessary; I think evil persons doing wrong are more easily expendable than good persons doing wrong." So maybe you would be right that it doesn't make a difference in some ways, but when we're proposing necessary assassinations, according to my moral intuitions it does make a difference. This is as regards moral principle. Now as to how that principle would be applied in your counterfactual situation, I would say that those Nazis whose motivation was more selfish would have been more easily expendable than those whose motivation was less selfish, whether that relative altruism of some was based on a correct estimation of "a great many goods" or even a sincerely deluded estimation.
[Edit: Not to mention that if "it's true that [performing certain evils] would lead to a great many goods [more goods than evils]," then on a utilitarian or consequentialist view, if I understand those views correctly, we would not even be comparing the degrees of two badnesses, we would be comparing the bad of abortion with the positive good (in your counterfactual) of the Holocaust. You may not be a utilitarian or consequentialist, but do all those goods not make any difference at all to you?]
(Regarding "society's right to intervene . . . is not overwhelming," by the way -- my thinking about bodily rights, as in a blog post of mine that you know about, leads me to depart from some pro-life thinking and to say that in the case of any pregnancy expected to be significantly rougher than a best-case pregnancy, a woman should have a right to abort -- though I would usually think better of her if she did not.)
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acyutananda
Could the philosophers who read my blog
create a thought-experiment that forces me to bite the bullet and say
that maybe in a circumstance where X, Y and Z are true that it would be
morally permissible to start a civil war over abortion? Perhaps, but
that thought-experiment will by necessity look REALLY different than
America in 2013 does.
If I have understood your preceding argument correctly, you mean "REALLY different" in terms of only one variable -- the degree of despotism. I have understood your premise to be that as long as a society adheres to true democratic principles, it can NEVER produce a situation that would justify vigilante action. Have I misunderstood you?
I think "never" would be too strong a word. Democracy is the sneaking suspicion that more than half the people are right more than half of the time. And even "more than half of the time" is just a sneaking suspicion.
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acyutananda
In Case 1 (the Pastor) and Case 3 (the Blogger), the message did not encourage violence, so the pastor and blogger are not culpable.
What if, without encouraging violence, the pastor or the blogger had misrepresented their targets as being more unpleasant persons than they really were?
Misrepresentation is sure to be one of the charges that pro-choicers will make against the CMP. I hope that that charge will be baseless. But -- CMP denounced Planned Parenthood as a criminal enterprise
-- suppose PP was not technically criminal -- Violence was a completely unreasonable (not to mention completely evil) response to their messages . . .
You have said that violence was (or would have been, if Dear in fact became violent for that reason) a completely unreasonable response to PP's being denounced as criminal. So apparently you would argue that even having falsely branded PP as criminal (when it was not) would not make the CMP culpable -- because even if PP is criminal, violence would be a completely unreasonable response. Have I understood you correctly?
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rebeccavm
I agree with much of your argument. However, please be cautious about throwing around the term "mentally ill." The vast majority of people with mental illnesses are not violent. A lot of us are pro-life too!
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Crystal
Another one here :)
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joshbrahm
I want to understand your concern better. Obviously we, and every other reasonable person, knows that not ALL mentally ill people are violent. Is your preference that nobody ever describes a mentally ill violent person as mentally ill?
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acyutananda
I can see how "A deeply mentally ill person listens to
the sermon and decides that . . . the
doctors deserve to be killed" could conceivably be read as suggesting that being deeply mentally ill is a sufficient reason to so decide. I didn't read it that way, but I can see how someone might.
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rebeccavm
My point is that mental illness =/ reprehensible behavior. Lots of people who do horrible things aren't mentally ill, and many more people with mental illnesses are not violent. We don't know if this guy has a diagnosed mental illness, and we're in no position to make a diagnosis is one is warranted. If the pro-life movement is concerned with describing pro-choicers accurately, we have to do the same for other groups of people.
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Crystal
I personally would prefer they were called criminally mentally ill*. Rebeccavm is right, she and I are not evil people just because we suffer depression, hear voices, have voices change feelings inside us, feel blamed for the junk that goes through our minds that we can't help!
:(
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Crystal
I'd appreciate an opinion on this article:
http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2015/11/30/conservatives-must-acknowledge-how-dangerous-their-anti-abortion-rhetoric-really-is/
Surely there is a difference between comparing the PRACTICE of abortion to slavery and calling every advocate for legal abortion (the PERSON disagreeing with us) a "baby-killer"?? Why is it violent rhetoric to explain the downsides of the PRACTICE of abortion, why is it dishonest to patiently explain the similarities between abortion and slavery and abortion and the Holocaust, I want to know. I agree that calling people names and demonising the opponents won't help though, as we want to win people not drive them away. Please tell me the difference between these two statements: 1) I do not consider you a nazi nor a vile person. However your beliefs lead you to advocate for a morally reprehensible practice
2) You're a fan of genocide
How about these two: 1) Abortion is the taking of an innocent human life, and by virtue of that is a human rights abuse; one out of many is that taking your life is as wicked as taking the unborn person's life
2) People who abort deserve to bleed to death and be shot; there is Biblical justification for taking out abortion butcherers
Can someone please explain the differences between these statements?
Also do you really think we are silently condoning a Holocaust by refusing to use guns? You see I've been dealing in a very interesting conversation with an advocate for legal abortion who has been strenuously asserting that if we really believed that stuff about abortion we say we'd go in and blow up abortion clinics otherwise we don't really believe what we say. Any help out there?
Here's the thread:
http://blog.secularprolife.org/2015/11/the-colorado-springs-shooting-what-we.html
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acyutananda
"Surely there is a difference . . ."
Thanks for some good thinking.
I've been thinking about it in somewhat different terms: It's common in some of the circles we find ourselves in to say that we should respect those we're dialoguing with, or we should respect everybody. Doesn't the logic of respecting those we're dialoguing with lead us to respecting everybody?
But where does that in turn lead us? "I respect Robert Dear, but I disagree with his ideas." "I respect Adam Lanza, but I disagree with his ideas." It feels a bit forced to say that. I would feel more honest saying, "I don't respect Adam Lanza's idea that he should shoot up a room full of 6-year-olds. I disrespect it. Therefore I disrespect that aspect of Adam Lanza." But then there would probably be a lot of things about him I would disrespect. If his singing voice was bad, to be honest I would have had to say that I disrespected his singing voice, I disrespected his bad breath, etc. But surely there is something about him that I do respect? Well, his essential humanity and essential perfectibility. But then everybody has that. [I've typed up some more here about how the word "respect" could lose its utility, but I need to think about it.]
MLK said that he didn't like racists, though he loved them. Wouldn't he have felt free to say also "I don't respect racists, even when I'm dialoguing with them, but I love them?"
Without respecting someone, it's still possible to speak respectfully to them. But is there never a time to flatly denounce somebody? Maybe the best formula would be to say that whatever may be the appropriate way to deal with somebody, we can and should do it without ego.
"You see I've been dealing in a very interesting conversation"
I'll reply to you there.
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Crystal
I have been giving further thought to the question. This morning I read an article dealing precisely with the topic of anti-abortion violence, as written by people not professing to be pro-life:
http://www.pfaw.org/rww-in-focus/operation-rescue-s-big-break-how-organization-rooted-radical-fringes-anti-choice-moveme?_ga=1.201140013.246407826.1449257486
I will be honest and admit that these people have stated two things: 1) these folks are fringe yet mainstreamed
2) these folks have explicitly denounced violence
Now then. If we are to take the argument that treating abortion as a sensitive political issue is not really caring for unborn persons on its face, we have a problem. We have two possibilities: 1) The PL movement has been telling the truth, insisting that their movement is predominantly peaceful, and therefore will not adopt these arguments at face value as they can see the wisdom in behaving peacefully and lying low; they need then to be honest even as they compare abortion to other horrific practices, like, for instance, admit that abortion is more politically analogous to slavery than to nazism
2) The PL movement has mainstreamed violence and deceived many of its followers via intimidating of abortion practitioners, threatening their lives, and in some cases bombing and shooting PP places, therefore violence has been tried for 40 years and found wanting; in this case, their point is moot
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acyutananda
If I understood your previous post correctly, it addressed two issues:
  1. the difference between condemning a practice and condemning personally an advocate for that practice
  2. the validity or invalidity of the argument "if we really believed that stuff about abortion we say we'd go in and
    blow up abortion clinics otherwise we don't really believe what we say."
    There is probably some relation between the two issues, but I think that your post did not spell out that relation.
    I replied on this page to your 1, and on the SPL page to your 2.
    Now the main focus of your present post seems to be this issue --
    "the argument that treating abortion as a sensitive political issue is not really caring for unborn persons"
-- which seems to correspond much more to 2 in your previous post than to 1 in your previous post. I replied to your 2 on the SPL page. Since you are replying to me, wouldn't it be better to paste your present post as a reply to me on the SPL page?
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Crystal
My apologies, the two points are unrelated. It was another argument I wanted to present as I was thinking it through recently and could see holes in their ideas - big ones! Sorry for the confusion.
Of course if you want to thrash it out on the SPL site with me, we can do this; I love the extra stimulus :)
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Anonymous
I was under the impression that the Friendly Atheist blog had a reputation for being reasonable and fair to pro-life advocates, as well as taking their ideas seriously (much to the ire of many abortion proponents in the blogosphere). Looks like I'll have to revise that assessment.
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Crystal
Did you read it?
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Anonymous
Of course. Didn't you?
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Crystal
Yep. But that's an odd question, because how else would I know what it said so well?
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Wholovesorangesoda
Very well written and well thought out. And I have to say, on another note, I greatly enjoy what you are doing in the pl movement. Thinking critically of ones side is pretty much something no one does nowadays. And it's very refreshing indeed. The last year or two I have been having quite a bit of a prolife crisis so to speak.(I think it started when I saw a pic of a woman who had performed a coat hanger abortion on herself, and then the satvia case. Tough nasty reality.) So it's really nice to hear someone trying to listen to all sides and take everyone serious on this almost impossible issue.
I remember seeing a comment you made a while ago where you said u wanted to write about abortion to save the life of mom specifically. Any updates on that?! I think it really needs to be discussed seriously by us.
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Anonymous
He has a speech on the life of the mother case here:
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/mothers-life-risk-speech-audio/
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Wholovesorangesoda
Thanks for the link! The talk was mostly talking about ectopic pregnancies. However, I think the main problem is the whole direct/indirect unintentionally but forseen intentional but unforseen issue-The intentions of the act and how connected one is to the death of the fetus. There are situations that bring this reality out that are not related to ectopic pregnancies. Such as a woman who has a severely infected cervix and has just found out she's six weeks pregnant. Also, as in the satvia case, there are women who are 17 weeks pregnant who are carrying a baby who's bodily tissue is so infected that it is killing it- and seriously risking the mother(when also, a risk to ones health becomes a risk to ones life is also another issue that is brushed under the rug). I think it would do mu h good to talk about the actual reality of these situations.
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Wholovesorangesoda
And there are some other cases that are equally difficult to talk about. Say for example a seven year old is raped by her grandfather, is suicidal and is pregnant-- with an acephalic fetus. I wonder how we should talk about these cases.
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HeadBitchInCharge1
How many girls do you know who have reached menarche by 7 years of age?
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Wholovesorangesoda
What's menarche? And I honestly can't tell you I remember knowing any 7 year old girls, except when I was seven, lol.
Incredibly rare, I totally agree only point was to say I think we need to realize that even very rare cases are rare, they happen and need to be talked about ( And I think maybe I should have used an 11 yr old as an example because its much more common, just mentioned seven because there was some 7 year olds case a while back).
And I completely agree that we shouldn't go at this starting with the hardest of all cases and then saying, "ah well maybe there
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Wholovesorangesoda
There ARE horrific cases that are so unfathomably evil and difficult that it would need to be decided by those closet to the situation. We must remember, we do not live in the 1950's. You get one tough case and the media gets its hands on it, forget it. Everyone and their pet will be taking specifically about the hard cases. I know it has nothing to do with the topic at hand here. Just wanted to get some thoughts on this! Thanks for ur reply!
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Crystal
Keep it on life, don't let the law be made on hard cases. That's where you fall into your traps.
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HeadBitchInCharge1
Menarche is the start of girl's menstrul cycle
Doesn't usually happen till 11-12.
Every once in a while it's 9.
Of course we know these cases exist.
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Wholovesorangesoda
Oh, I'm sure everyone knows they exist! I was just wondering if anyone else feels like me and struggles with this at all. If anyone has anything new to say about the tough cases and how they should be dealt with from a prolife perspective.
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javelinaharker
I do struggle with this, too. Not just with respect to abortion, but anything that causes harm to another.
Full disclosure: I'm not pro-life. I'm anti-abortion. A small but important distinction, to me.
I feel a tremendous, heart-wrenching empathy for those cases of rape, incest and abuse. I do regardless of the abortion angle. I recognise, though, that laws meant to serve a greater ethical purpose cannot be based on my feelings.
It is the same process I work through when I hear about someone killing their longtime abuser. Some raw part of me cheers. Then my head catches up and I remind myself it is still murder and they must be held accountable, no matter how much my heart is screaming that the SOB deserved it.
So I must hold fast to my belief that abortion should carry criminal consequences, even while I can simultaneously recognise there are instances where, while I cannot condone that choice, I can at least understand it.
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Wholovesorangesoda
Hey would you like to chat with me about this via email?? Sorry for the year long delay in response, lol. My email is rocaao21@aol. Thanks!!
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javelinaharker
Sure. Please give me a few days to write -- real life is interfering with more intellectual endeavours. :)
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Providing_Care
If Doc Thom gives me permission, and you are willing to pass through a verification rubric, I am willing to share my Email and his with you.
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javelinaharker
That would be excellent, Shep. I've kept my eyes open for a rubric prompt but I might have missed it with everything else going on.
I did find an email on the listed site for Dr. Thomas, but I am waiting for confirmation he's inclined to have me pester him before I write. People are busy, and I do not have a sense of entitlement to others' time.
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Providing_Care
Look for a reply to an old post of yours from a friend of mine in Lousiana. Initials are BC. I'll call her. She helps me to keep this clean. The rubric will make good sense to a quick mind like yours. Please indulge me in the few minutes required to ensure the safety of all parties involved.
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Providing_Care
He has never pestered me. If you wish I can share your Email with him, after you complete my last rubric prompt in your Email from me. Your philosophical post was on a thread that closed before I could reply. It was perfect. Nothing could be added to it. You are a very interesting lady.
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Paul
And she seems to be getting better all the time. Disqus can be a strange place to find a strength, wisdom or calling but it does happen :-)
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javelinaharker
Thank you, Shep.
I think perhaps my email to you may have gotten junk filtered, as I've responded to everything I've seen.
Please let me know if we're golden? :)
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Wholovesorangesoda
Thnx!
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Crystal
We need to start inventing superior technological alternatives to abortion in order to lessen the "need" from the supply side. Punishing abortion without replacement won't help us.
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Wholovesorangesoda
Yes, we do. However, I have heard if nothing much happening on that front. And artificial wombs still remain to be more out of a sci-fi book than reality.
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Crystal
What are your questions about abortion, exactly, and I'll see if I can answer in my own poor way. I don't know everything but I'll do my best.
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Wholovesorangesoda
My questions? Well, I think there are a million questions I have but I think there are some definite issues that pro lifers don't discuss enough, and avoid talking about, which will only need to be talked about eventually. I would like to know when a physical health risk becomes a life risk. Is this a matter or percent or some other measure or what ? And who should be the judge of defining when a risk is too risky.
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Crystal
I have no idea how to answer you, but I can tell you what I think: 1) Physical health becomes life risk - I think for this you need to study ALL the life-of-the-mother cases. Some are not serious and do not require an abortion, like toxemia, AFAIK. Others demand instant intervention, like a molar pregnancy
2) In regards to it being a matter of a percent, 1% of women - meaning 300-800 women - die from childbirth in a year. And that is in the US alone. In other places the death toll is much higher
3) Each situation is different; in some cases, if a woman's life is at risk and laws were passed to protect the unborn persons but nary a word about her, they could cause a woman to die
Hence the need to answer these questions, and create technological solutions that will deal with these problems. You're right - the PL movement has been disgustingly dishonest as to these questions. That is one reason out of many why we haven't gone anywhere.
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Wholovesorangesoda
I agree, the general pro life response has been disturbingly disingenuous. Whenever I hear a prolife politician say they are pro life "with absolutely no exception for the life of the mother, because it is never necessary to abort in these situations" I feel like smacking them. How can someone who is not a Dr. Say this and with such pride.I think when it comes to the law prolifers need to maybe even be silent for a while and realize it is better to discuss seriously, thoroughly, and articulately the issue before making up thoughtless sloppy laws and such.
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Crystal
"Whenever I hear a prolife politician say they are pro life "with
absolutely no exception for the life of the mother, because it is never
necessary to abort in these situations" I feel like smacking them."
I know people who believe like that. I empathise with their position because they are trying to say mums are not more important than babies. I try to be careful personally but I do hope for a day when life-of-the-mother will no longer be an excuse because it won't be necessary given future technology. Also life-of-the-mother has been used to justify unnecessary abortions and has held science back from inventing ways to save unborn persons in those situations, I think. Yet at this present time life-of-the-mother is something that needs to be seriously taken into account.
So, for the present I say, the life that can be saved should be saved, even if that might involve life-of-the-mother (although I hate myself for saying that a lot at times). But if it doesn't need to it should not, IMO.
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lady_black
Oh PLEASE, Crystal. Of course the life of the woman is more important than the life of the conceptus. If she dies, it dies. If it dies, her life goes on. There can be other pregnancies.
And you aren't giving much thought to the real babies she already has, either. She owes them a mother... she doesn't owe them a sibling.
That's a sore spot for me, since I nearly lost my mom to a wanted pregnancy that went very badly. I wanted my mother. I couldn't care less about a non-existent sibling, and I certainly didn't need one. I definitely needed my mother.
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Crystal
I appreciate your sharing your perspective as well, because I understand that sometimes pregnancies are so life-threatening that women cannot continue them. I am not against saving the mother's life in such a situation if there is no other way to do so.
I am very sorry you nearly lost your mother; that must have been very hard on you and I am happy she survived.
I do believe doctors can judge wrongly in these kinds of situations, in either stopping a life-saving abortion for the mother, or permitting an unnecessary abortion that was deemed life-saving but in reality is not.
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lady_black
Who cares whether it was life-saving or not, Crystal?? How much threat of harm does a woman need to undergo to satisfy your sad feelies?
If she will be a vegetable, is that good enough? What if she can't walk? Can't work? Is blind? Is profoundly neurologically impaired due to a stroke brought on by toxemia?
Unnecessary? Surely you jest.
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joshbrahm
I'm curious what you mean that "the pro-life movement has been disgustingly dishonest" regarding questions of life-threatening pregnancies? Who are you talking about? I'm not aware of very many pro-life leaders who disagree with my take on this question. Do you mean ignorant activists who haven't researched it?
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Crystal
Okay, let's take this from the beginning.
Have you considered the potential downsides to making abortion illegal? Wouldn't there have to be a board to decide which cases are life-threatening enough to allow an abortion? Also life-of-the-mother isn't really important to some people. She can just roll over and die because it's God's will as far as they're concerned. Also childbirth kills 1% - 300-800 women in the US alone. In other countries the death rate is much higher. Also couldn't pregnancy kill a child? What about people who would deny chemo to a woman for fear it would harm the unborn person? What about women who will be put in prison if these laws get abused, like chemical endangerment? Do you think a woman should be made by law to go through with a pregnancy even if it will leave her 100% paralyzed? I mean, how are people even going to define abortion? Supposing the mother knows pregnancy could kill her, the board deems incorrectly, and she has an abortion anyway and an abortionist is executed because of it - would you not have thought that people should reconsider instead and say, "We need to study this medical condition more"?*
*Not that I'm trying to justify abortion in this case BTW
You see, some of these laws can be horribly abused! Just a few of my thoughts.
I suppose I do mean ignorant activists and politicians who haven't researched it, although I think the mainstream PL movement has been dishonest on a lot of things relating to abortion (none of that is meant to be a reflection on you, your friends, the grassroots, or genuine PL leaders who care about life and not so much controlling people). I certainly wasn't talking about you, or your friends, because you sound like a reasonable bunch. I confess you caught me off-guard with your question; do you mind if I answer it more extensively later, though this is some of what I could come up with off the top of my head.
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joshbrahm
Yeah, I suppose either a board or at least multiple doctors ought to sign off on cases that are threatening the life of a woman, but it's not rare for multiple doctors to sign off on controversial decisions.
"Life-of-the-mother isn't really important to some people. She can just roll over and die because it's God's will as far as they're concerned."
Here's what I suspect: I don't think you've heard actual pro-life leaders say that. I think you've seen a few idiots say that. Every side has idiots saying idiotic things. But if my assessment is correct, please don't say that "the pro-life movement" or "pro-life leaders" say these things. It's painting with WAY too broad a brush.
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Crystal
"Yeah, I suppose either a board or at least multiple doctors ought to
sign off on cases that are threatening the life of a woman, but it's not
rare for multiple doctors to sign off on controversial decisions."
What do you mean? Do you mean doctors ought to have that kind of power over a woman's life? Is that really, honestly any different from doctors and a woman having that sort of power over an unborn person's life? The thought of having a board to determine whether I am permitted such a thing horrifies me for two reasons: 1) I wouldn't do it, even if I was dying, because unborn persons are important; therefore it's a compromise position
2) women are people too and their lives count!
"Here's what I suspect: I don't think you've heard actual pro-life
leaders say that. I think you've seen a few idiots say that. Every side
has idiots saying idiotic things. But if my assessment is correct,
please don't say that "the pro-life movement" or "pro-life leaders" say
these things. It's painting with WAY too broad a brush."
I have relatives who believe this way! Honestly, it scares me that my life could count for so little if I was placed in that kind of situation!
As for actual PL leaders, allow me to correct you if I may. For instance, Scott Walker, Wisconsin governor, stated that abortion was not necessary for life-of-the-mother cases. While I realise that life-of-the-mother is an open door to other types of abortions and therefore can appreciate his perspective he would be just as much right to assist poor little baby monkeys being torn from their mother's arms and used for unethical experiments:
http://liveactionnews.org/scott-walker-informs-megyn-kelly-abortion-not-necessary-to-save-mothers-life/
http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/govt-and-politics/scott-walker-calls-life-of-the-mother-abortion-debate-a/article_282891c5-dfd1-52e0-927d-5deb6394d33c.html
http://www.jsonline.com/news/statepolitics/scott-walker-calls-abortion-to-save-a-womans-life-a-false-choice-b99553080z1-321141741.html
https://www.change.org/p/university-of-wisconsin-cancel-the-unethical-torture-and-killing-of-baby-monkeys (this petition mentions him by name in one of the updates)
Doug Phillips, Biblical Patriarchy leader, stated that ectopic abortions were immoral, never mind the mother, and here's an article to prove my point; while I get where he's coming from on ectopic pregnancies the life that can be saved should be saved, I think:
http://www.ethicsdaily.com/christian-leader-rejects-abortion-to-save-a-womans-life-cms-12978
http://www.patheos.com/blogs/nolongerquivering/2010/06/vision-forum-samaritan-ministries-take-extreme-pro-life-position-on-ectopic-pregnancies/
Doug Phillips used to be highly respected by homeschoolers until his latest scandal. He makes me angry, that man, because of what he did. It's a shocking story if you care to read!
The worst part about this is these guys are (or in the case of Doug Phillips, were) respected men in conservatism, although DP wasn't as well known as Scott Walker. Scott Walker was loved and lauded and this is what he said!
From what I have seen, there seems to be this shift in prolife thinking towards stopping abortions for life-of-the-mother. I will keep digging and keep trying to back up what I say with evidence. I apologise if I came across too harsh or two strong, but I have been a critical observer of the mainstream PL movement for years, and seeing the many failings of PL individuals in leadership in conservativism (and in some cases, PL leaders) makes me have very little trust in the PL movement at this time, although if I find I have assessed the PL movement incorrectly I am greatly open to correction on the point, especially as you seem to know very caring and decent people. So please, tell me more about these kind, decent prolifers! However, I do know of PL people who are causing the PL movement to have a bad name; like, for instance, have you ever heard of Doug Wilson? If not, I'll be happy to tell you about it.
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joshbrahm
"What do you mean? Do you mean doctors ought to have that kind of power over a woman's life? Is that really, honestly any different from doctors and a woman having that sort of power over an unborn person's life?"
That's certainly not a neutral way to phrase the question, but okay...
Here's what I mean. A close friend of mine has a sister who struggles with psychiatric and drug problems. She recently claimed to have become pregnant, and that the pregnancy was life-threatening so she was having an abortion. When my friend asked about her condition, her sister said that she hadn't seen one doctor. She just had some pain and did some online research. I don't think she gets to have an abortion and justify it by calling it a life-threatening pregnancy unless a medical professional who knows what he or she is talking about actually diagnoses it.
I think if abortion became illegal except to save a mother's life, many people would want to claim that their pregnancy is life-threatening when that's not the case. A dishonest doctor could easily do the same thing if there is no accountability. So having a few doctors sign off that yes, this is a life-threatening pregnancy and there is no way to save the child is SUPER reasonable, given the gravity of the situation.
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Crystal
I can appreciate your reasons for caution. Life should not be taken unnecessarily and I agree that life-of-the-mother can be horribly abused, hence taking more innocent lives than necessary. This is something we have to guard vigilantly against, I think. So many doctors throw out these life-of-the-mother reasons where the unborn person could have been saved as well; it's an abuse of power and it needs to be treated as such.
However, the objection my friend had was that the life-threatening condition was genuine, that red tape can take a long time, and that in this particular scenario she might need drastic action right now.
Like, for instance, this story:
http://abcnews.go.com/Health/pregnant-dominican-teen-center-abortion-debate-dies-delayed/story?id=17044066
It was chemo, not technically an abortion, but they delayed it for fear it would kill the unborn person. I don't agree with that. Such laws can be abused. If there was such a board in place and a woman lost her life due to the situation not being deemed serious enough to have such drastic action aren't they responsible for her life?
To be honest, I don't think that there really should be such a thing in place at all. I think instead that high techs for dealing with general cases should come first then technological solutions to dealing with life-of-the-mother cases. Then we're looking after both. I can't imagine a society that bans abortion and provides no technological alternative lasting very long, given the moral climate we have today. Also the idea of a board, composed of men, holding my little female life in the balance, sounds nightmarish to me.
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Crystal
Another thing - doesn't little caution open the door to lots of abortions being practiced again?
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joshbrahm
It's not weird to me that there are people who call themselves pro-life that give the rest of us a bad name. I'm challenging you in the area of implying that this is a large segment of the pro-life movement or pro-life leaders. The two people you named don't demonstrate that. Not even close.
I think Scott Walker actually didn't know what he was talking about, and multiple pro-life people, myself included, stated corrections THAT NIGHT.
I've never heard of Doug Wilson.
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Crystal
I do not believe my criticisms of PL thought and practice are entirely without merit as I have been researching the topic of the failings of conservative thought and practice for years and could eventually become an expert in the field, unfortunately I never got to answer your question. I do care about getting my facts straight. Could you tell me some of the folks you know well in the PL movement, as I appreciate hearing another side of the story, please?
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joshbrahm
Take a look at our advisory board: http://equalrightsinstitute.com/about/staff. I'm fairly close with everyone on this list.
I'm either friends or acquaintances with most of the people actually leading pro-life organizations.
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lady_black
I know one who was eight. She is my niece, and she is also autistic. Her mother assures me that she would never be forced to continue a pregnancy by rape.
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$59629176
Hi lb, thats horrible that a child at eight year-old would be forced to continue a pregnancy.
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Crystal
Despite my prolife beliefs I am willing to admit that small children carrying to term is a difficult case that should tug on all our hearts.
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$59629176
Crystal this is a very interesting article and I appreciate having the opportunity to post here. Some thoughts about it.
The author of the article Timothy Brahm posted in his bio, "He is interested in helping pro-life and pro-choice people to have better dialogues about abortion." I applaud him for trying to facilitate an honest civil dialogue. However it's difficult when pro-choices are demonized and miss labeled "pro-abortion." This is not an accurate term. Those who are pro-choice are not "pro-abortion" but are in favor of all options for pregnant women, to continue a pregnancy or not.
Rhetoric that paints pro-choicers as "baby killers" contributes to violence against women's clinics. Since the videos were released by CMP there have been, "In the four months following the release of the videos, there have been at least four suspected arsons that targeted abortion clinics, compared with just one in all of 2014 and none in 2013. There have been at least five cases of vandalism since August. In comparison, there were 12 total cases of clinic vandalism in all of 2014 and just five cases in 2013, according to federation figures." Quote from http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/11/violence-abortion-clinics-planned-parenthood-colorado-springs-shooting
Sources:
https://www.splcenter.org/hatewatch/2015/10/02/four-arsons-74-days-planned-parenthood-clinics
http://insiderlouisville.com/metro/windows-emw-womens-surgery-center-broken-twice-three-weeks/
It would be great if both sides of the abortion debate could engage in a civil honest dialog. Thanks for your thoughts about this.
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Crystal
I appreciate your responding back. As a prolifer I feel it personally incumbent on me to be able to relate to both advocates for legal abortion and prolifers. I do not like the fighting and arguing between the two sides and a lot of it could be avoided if people didn't sling mud at each other. Which is why I'll talk to people as people, not pro-aborts or forced birthers.
Do you believe there is a difference between saying these two things: 1) Your actions could lead you down a morally reprehensible path because your beliefs are off-base/; you are advocating for something morally reprehensible
2) You're a fan of genocide
In other words, is there a difference between condemning actions and people who commit those actions?
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$59629176
Yes, I agree there is a difference. Kudos to you for not using the pejorative "pro-abort" term.
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Crystal
So you are more likely to listen to the first point than the second one?
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$59629176
I may not agree, but yes more likely to listen.
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Crystal
Why would that be?
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$59629176
I disagree with this, "Your actions could lead you down a morally reprehensible path because your beliefs are off-base/; you are advocating for something morally reprehensible." I don't believe being pro-choice is morally reprehensible.
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Crystal
Yes, I realise you disagree. But my question was is expressing strong opinions about an ACTION different from condemning a PERSON?
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$59629176
I get that but I don't believe on condemning the action.
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Crystal
In regards to the action, we will have to respectfully disagree. However, in regards to people, we do agree that they not be generally condemned.
In light of that, would you mind describing to me your views on abortion?
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$59629176
I am pro-choice.
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Crystal
I'm aware of that.
Do you think abortion should be done in the third trimester?
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$59629176
I think the issue of third trimester abortions are a red herring. They are one percent of abortions.
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Crystal
Why do you say third trimester abortions are a red herring?
I asked because I know that some people approve of them, although most don't.
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$59629176
Sorry for the slow response, but I concur with Mr. G. I don't think any woman wants to undergo a third term abortion. From what I understand and have read, women in this position are carrying a much wanted pregnancy and something with the pregnancy has gone horribly wrong, i.e. health of the mother or a fetus that is incompatible with life.
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GulfCoastGamer
I suspect that most who do not approve of 3rd trimester abortions aren't aware of the circumstances in which they're performed - a wanted pregnancy gone horribly bad. The notion that woman are aborting willy-nilly on a whim in their 3rd trimester is a (horribly dishonest) myth,
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lady_black
Actually ZERO percent. Those are deliveries.
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GulfCoastGamer
Of course, they should. All but perhaps a small handful of 3rd trimester abortions are done when a wanted pregnancy has gone seriously south - to preserve the life / health of the pregnant woman or because it's been determined that the fetus is either already dead or has a condition incompatible with life that lasts beyond a few hours or days at most. I see no benefit in forcing a woman to continue to gestate a doomed pregnancy. At the same time, I don't advocate for forced abortions, If a woman wants to continue that pregnancy because she perceives some value in giving birth and a few hours with her neonate before it dies, I do not object.
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lady_black
Abortion is not even POSSIBLE in the third trimester. That's a delivery by definition, even if the fetus won't survive.
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GulfCoastGamer
For those of us who find holding a woman in involuntary servitude by forcing her to gestate a fetus against her will reprehensible, there's no need to experience angst over actions needed to free a woman from that condition, One might experience that angst, but not doing so says nothing about the person's perceptions.
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lady_black
I agree with expect resistance. Once I hear the term "pro-abort" I just stop listening, period.
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GulfCoastGamer
1) there is a difference between those two
2) those are not the only perspectives available.
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Crystal
I'm aware of that. But my comment was precisely dealing with the way prolifers perceive and handle these things, rather than the general range of views out there.
What are your views on abortion, personally, Mr. G? I realise you're a legal abortion advocate, but I'd appreciate a concise explanation so that I don't put you in a box.
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GulfCoastGamer
Although I've become accustomed to attempts to put me in a box defined by so-called "pro-life" people, I welcome the opportunity to step outside it because, after all, I am not entirely defined by advocacy for legal abortion.
Although it's only part of who I am, I am defined, in part, by vigorous advocacy for a woman's right to choose how her body is used. Although this extends far beyond the area of reproduction, it is my hope that any service she provides others is freely given so that blessing may abound and bitterness/resentment has no anchor. I am as opposed to forced abortion as I am to forced gestation. I am opposed to human trafficking in all forms. My advocacy with regard to reproduction includes a menu of things:
Realistic, accurate sex education
Easy access to effective contraceptives
When a woman's primary contraceptive method fails, I have no objection to her employment of a secondary method in order to achieve her originally intended outcome: not pregnant.
Given that i see enslaving people as among the most reprehensible acts if not the most reprehensible,I am willing to employ any and all means necessary to free people from slavery. I do not experience angst about what is necessary. In my view, that would be a waste of time and energy to no useful end.
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lady_black
I agree, And my niece is particularly vulnerable to being taken advantage of because of her condition. She may never be fit to care for herself, even as an adult, much less care for a baby. And no one has the right to utilize her like an appliance.
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Anonymous
I agree that the speech doesn't deal with every possible situation, and I personally commented on the article identifying cases where the intentional/direct vs. unintentional/indirect dichotomy doesn't seem to work. I believe Josh is planning on covering hard cases like these in the major project ERI is launching in 2016.
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Wholovesorangesoda
Ah, of course I didn't even read the comments.
" I believe Josh is planning on covering hard cases like these in the major project ERI is launching in 2016."
Ok, great to know.
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Wholovesorangesoda
I'm a dude. And I despise abortion. I actually thought I was being polite, trying to get some feedback by other providers and issues within the abortion conversation that have been nagging at me.I think like Josh says it is important for us to be critical of ourselves. And why the hell would I start screaming at anyone?
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Wholovesorangesoda
And you as well!
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Wholovesorangesoda
I really think calling each other trolls and sneaky and so forth is fruitless. Nothing good will come of it. I don't know shifty or her/his position on abortion but I think he/she is aware that I am not prochoice but have some concerns about the prolife position that I think need to be seriously discussed.they have not been rude to me so that's what I'll go by. Personal stabs at people take us off topic.
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Infadelicious
Wow.. not only is liberalism a mental illness, one of the biggest symptoms is their utter lack of self awareness. it boggles the mind PJ. I honestly don't know how you can spend so much time with these people. Saying they have love in their hearts after they spent the better part of a week stalking women and calling them wh*res and other "heart full of love" stuff.
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$93800276
My major concern are all of the militant "pro-choice" websites assassinating the collective character of pro-lifers based on the actions of one disturbed man.
There is no doubt in my mind that mental illness was a contributing factor so I agree with your view Mr Brahm.
The issue now is not to feed into the disparaging commentary of those whose only goal is to paint pro-lifers as violent. It is highly amusing IMO how desperate the militant pro-choicer has become to attempt to indict our entire movement.
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javelinaharker
Well expressed, Thomas.
A few months ago, after the Roof murders, I wrote a tongue-in-cheek comment about how (if I were Satan), my instructions to my minions would include a few well-placed nudges to some fragile mentally ill people, so they would go up a clock tower and snipe off PP clinics -- because that would be such a feast for the liberal media.
Dear does not represent whites. He does not represent men. He does not represent the mentally ill. He does not represent Christians, conservatives, or gun owners. He has represented himself, and will see consequences himself.
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DarkCougar555
It is highly amusing IMO how desperate the militant pro-choicer has become to attempt to indict our entire movement.
Yeah, I noticed that as well. It's mind boggling when they insisted that it's not all Muslims are terrorists. Yet, they don't mind to put all pro-lifers in one box.
It's not much different than they think it's okay to mock virgins but it's not okay to mock "sluts". I recall how numerous people got pissed off at one atheist doctor because he tried to help JW patients with their wish wills at the hospital. It's pretty screwed up...
EDIT: Grammar misspelling, "territors".
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Jim_H_Discus
Thomas:
If you are talking about truly "militant pro-choice websites", they are likely frequented almost exclusively by a militant pro-choicer crowd, who didn't like you to begin with. You were never going to convert them anyway. Why do you get upset when obvious militants act militantly?
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Crystal
I think it is because Thomas has feelings and he can get very hurt by harsh commentary.
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Jim_H_Discus
Perhaps Mr. Sensitive should refrain from comments like:
"You're conversing with a maroon. We suspect s/he still lives in mommy's basement."
If he did, I might have a bit more sympathy about his feelings.
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Crystal
Good point!
Josh Brahm won't allow that kind of comment on his site. As for myself I refuse to engage in them.
What's your opinion on the PL movement at the moment? Do you think its language about abortion and the people doing them had anything to do with the shooter's actions or do you think the two are entirely separate things?
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Jim_H_Discus
I say I think the shooter was a nut case. However, I also think you cannot make statements that call abortion murder, baby slaughtering, genocide, etc. or compare it to the Holocaust or slavery and then just wash your hands (like Pilate) when someone acts like it really is what you describe it as and takes a personal direct violent action to stop it.
Such language is emotive and relies on connotation; I.e., the implied meaning or significance of a word or phrase beyond, and often with little regard for its actual definition. The whole purpose of using such language is to evoke an emotional response to influence the hearer a certain way. The stronger the word used the more emotional the response.
Such emotive language promotes activity in the amygdala, an area of the brain that helps generate emotions. It also results in less activity in the prefrontal cortex, the part of the brain that regulate emotions, and is responsible for most of our higher mental functions like abstract thinking.
Adrian Raine, a Penn Integrates Knowledge professor in the Departments of Criminology Psychiatry and Psychology, and his colleagues demonstrated that when presented with emotionally provocative stimuli, wife abusers showed greater activity in the amygdala and less activity in the prefrontal cortex compared to non-abusers. This suggests that rather than using violence at home in a planned, conscious way to control their spouses, some abusers instead over-react to mildly provocative stimuli with hair-trigger tempers that are partly predicated on brain-based emotional over-reactivity and reduced ability to regulate that emotion.
If you refer to something in as strong of terms as those I mentioned above those words are intended to evoke strong emotional responses like anger, outrage, etc. and understand the double whammy it puts on the way the brain functions. Is it really such a stretch to assume they could evoke violence, at least in some people.
Sorry it to me so long to answer. I wanted to be thorough in my response. I apologize if I overdid it.
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joshbrahm
I think this is the most reasonable way to make the argument, I just don't think it holds to scrutiny. If pro-life advocates are responsible for the Planned Parenthood shooting because of "emotionally powerful language," then nobody can condemn any kind of evil or injustice. Why? Because any statement condemning anything could make us culpable for a murder if we stated our opinion openly and a crazy person just happened to be present.
Ironically, this would mean that if pro-choice advocates were right about us being culpable for this shooting, then they are taking an awful risk. Think about it. If a pro-choice person decides to retaliate with violence after hearing those pro-choice people talk, then the pro-choice advocates would then be culpable for inciting violence.
My conclusion is that everyone should peacefully oppose both injustice and censorship. If we aren’t afraid of where the truth will lead, then there is no need to attempt to silence people who disagree with us.
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Jim_H_Discus
Thank you for the thoughtful reply. I'm not saying people should not speak the truth, only that they be aware of how they express that truth. There is a difference between that an abortion kills a living human fetus or you can say that it is the deliberate cold blooded, torturous murder of a little baby. The first is quite true and the language used is technically correct as well. The latter is much more emotionally evocative. It is also incorrect from a technical perspective. If you check a medical dictionary, fetus is the appropriate term prenatally, baby only applies after birth, a dictionary defines murder as illegal killing, deliberate and cold blooded assumes we can know other peoples feelings, intentions, etc.
It does not require that a person be crazy for them to react violently. People will resort to violence when they feel justified in doing so. For example, if a terrorists sacrifices his/her own life for a cause, he/she believes what they are doing is justified and even God's will. We condemn them. The Old Testament is full of stories where the Israelites conquered and killed countless men women and children in Canaan. Believers don't condemn those killings, because they believe it was God's will. They just disagree on who is on God's side. Also, men go off to war to serve their countries. They feel justified in deliberately killing other men who are also serving their countries. We consider them heroes.
I do believe that pro-choice people have the same obligation as pro-life people to take responsibility for how they say what they say. I see a problem with the way both sides use language to stereotype and demonize the other.
By using "pro-choice" and "pro-life" both sides try to play on feeling about widely held values such as liberty and freedom. This, of course, suggests that the opposition side must be "anti-choice" or "anti-life". Pro-lifers like to describe their opponents as "pro-abortion" or "pro-abort". Pro-choicers like to refer to their opponents as "forced birthers".
Such language seems to indicate that the people who uses it have trouble dealing with ambiguity. They seem to have a tendency to stereotype people and treat see them as caricatures of real people. They appear to be unaware, or unconcerned with the fact reflect the fact that real people hold complex views on issues like abortion. Numerous polls have shown that most people are not in favor of the extreme positions where abortion is allowed/not allowed, in all/any circumstance. Most fall somewhere in the middle. I would say that they see abortion as a very serious matter that requires some kind of justification. They don't necessarily agree with what that justification should be.
I agree that that everyone should peacefully oppose both injustice and censorship, but stereotypes and demonization do not serve justice. They serve a mob mentality. I also think if you want justice, you need to be aware and responsible, and self-censor your rhetoric.
In Beyond Good and Evil, Nietzsche commented that when fighting monsters we need to be careful not to become monsters. I think that is still good advice.
I also want to want to thank you for providing a forum where people seem to be expected to be civil and reasonable. That is pretty rare for the internet.
Kudos.
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$93800276
Hello Crystal. My profile is open and you are welcome to review it. I'm far from being hurt by harsh commentary 😀 You honestly need to see me in action on proabort sites but unfortunately a good number of them banned me for a well-reasoned dissent.
I simply choose not to engage Jim.
Please, in the future you are welcome to ask me directly about any comment I post on Mr Brahm's platform. I will do my best to elaborate for you.
Have I addressed your concern regarding my original comment?
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Crystal
Yes, and I'm glad to see you're okay, Tom. Will remember for next time, thanks!
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$93800276
Why do you patronize me?
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Crystal
I'm sorry, I didn't mean to patronise you. I would never do that intentionally. Please explain how I patronised you and I will not do it again. Many apologies.
My comment was meant to say that I was happy you weren't hurt over nasty invectives, partially because I am a very sensitive person and I bruise inside really fast.
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$93800276
You stated that you're glad that I feel okay although I did not indicate in any of my previous comments that I do not. In my original comment I only referenced concern for the way proaborts twist this unfortunate event. Makes sense?
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Crystal
Yes, and I'm sorry, Tom. As I stated I was worried you might be very sensitive to harsh commentary, like I am.
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$59629176
I thought you sounded nice. You've been nice to me, and I thank you.
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Crystal
That's all right. I like being nice to my fellow commenters generally, provided they don't push my buttons on racism and name-calling, LOL.
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Jim_H_Discus
You said nothing to be sorry for. I've yet to see a comment where you have. He's being an argumentative drama queen, probably because I hurt his feelings. I would apologize, but I can't honestly say I'm sorry, particularly when he continue to use proabort and stereotype people and views.
If he wants to do that he should go back to the environment where places he posts where that is acceptable and quit trying to "poison the well" here.
Keep up the good work.
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lady_black
Ignore it. There is nothing wrong with telling someone you're glad they're OK, regardless of whether or not they've said they aren't OK.
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Crystal
Thank you :)
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lady_black
Oh, MY. I don't see her patronizing you.
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Jim_H_Discus
She probably thinks you are going to hurt yourself, because you are coming across as not being too tightly wrapped. Particularly by taking offense with her concern over you.
Slow your roll a little man!
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GulfCoastGamer
His use of the term "pro-abort" provides some insight. Almost no one is "pro-abort", The far more honest term is "pro-choice".
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Jim_H_Discus
"You honestly need to see me in action on proabort sites but unfortunately a good number of them banned me for a well-reasoned dissent."
That seems to be the antithesis of what is expected on this forum, yet you brag about it. You are apparently proud of how you engage people with opposing views, even though it gets you banned and renders your impact null. You use the term proabort, which is simplistic and stereotypical, intending it to be pejorative, but then claim your argument is well-reasoned. That seems contradictory and oxymoronic.
I'm fine with you not engaging me. But, don't expect that to stop me from doing so when you make comments like that on this forum and try to let the snake into the garden of Eden.
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$93800276
I will address this post:
  1. Using the term proabort did not get me banned from RHRC and two other extremist proabort sites but discussing various concepts both movements disagree on.
  2. The term - proabort - is the most intellectually honest designation since the only choice for this movement is abortion-on-demand without apology. Nothing else is considered.
  3. Supporters of abortion constantly misuse terminology to achieve their objective. Many attempt to hijack the 13th Amendment comparing pregnancy to slavery although RvW was not based on that premise and there is zero support in the legal arena for that argument, refer to fetus as a parasite although medical consensus only uses that designation for the smaller of the conjoined twins (parasitic twin), misapply the terms "family planning" and use other euphemisms and constantly attempt to misuse terminology only to dehumanize the fetus. Finally, the subject of this thread - branding my entire movement as "violent" from the action of one disturbed man.
You and I have had a discussion on LAN but you continue to disregard my points from that exchange. In fact, you seem determined to disregard the constant intellectual dishonesty of proaborts that fly n the face of logic and accepted standards and norms. I am willing to acknowledge the term "pro-choice" as valid once proaborts come to terms with their intellectual dishonesty and bad faith arguments. Perhaps it needs to start with you?
Until then, I will continue to use the term PROABORT as the proper descriptor. Should I hold my breath? 😕
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lady_black
No, I'm sorry, Tom. That just isn't true. There is no such thing as someone who only supports abortion on demand. And if there is such a person, I've never met one.
If I were to meet such a person, I would tell them that is an anti-choice position.
No, pregnancy is not slavery. FORCING a woman to remain pregnant is slavery. I've been pregnant three times (that I know of) and have three children. I'm not going to call myself a slave. That would be absurd. But I'm also not going to deny that there are two words in the English language for a person who cannot exercise autonomy over his body. The two words are slave and prisoner.
I think there should be way fewer abortions. I have a clear idea of how that should be accomplished, and none of it involves passing draconian legislation. First, contraception (all kinds, but particularly LTRCs) should be widely available, and free. Secondly, quality pre-natal care and birthing options should be available. Also free. Thirdly, social support should be robust. It's a three-pronged approach, and I guarantee it will reduce abortions on the front end, and on the back end, because few women will see it as their best option. It will cost money. YOUR job is to convince legislators that it's money well spent.
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$93800276
You're the second person in this thread who called me Tom although my name is , as you can clearly see, Thomas. I suspect foul play 😂
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lady_black
You might try addressing the point?
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$93800276
I'm looking for confirmation of my points from the proabort movement. That would include recognition from proabort sites and PP that they've long engaged in intellectual dishonesty and lying. Why do you think I asked if I should hold my breath? The proabort movement will never concede on anything. I guess I have free reign at continually using the term PROABORT.
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lady_black
Nice word salad. What do you want pro-choice people to concede on? That there are too many abortions? I think I did that. I also provided a three-prong strategy to combat the problem, and challenged you to help make it happen. Because CLEARLY, just banning abortion is not an option and will not stop any abortions.
I believe that we can address the problems that lead to abortion, but we seem to lack the political will to do so. We just wish to take the lazy approach, and not address the social realities that lead to it. That has never worked, and it won't work now, either. Other countries that do follow the approach I have laid out have much lower abortion rates than we have, without draconian legislation. I guess it depends on whether you really want to reduce abortion, or whether you just want to trample on women.
Now, kindly address what I actually said, or accept that you have lost the debate.
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James of Ireland
There is your problem. You think killing the baby is a debate. That is exactly what you are saying. Killing less by enacting legislation will do what? Lessen the slaughter of the unborn? At what point does morality enter into your philosophical equation? The only one who loses is the BABY! Once again you use ''draconian''. What the hell do you think abortion is when fewer are done. Still killing! Where is the moral factor of sexual restraint in any of your comments? You are looking for debating the life of a baby..just like the abortionist does, right before the slaughter takes place!
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lady_black
There is no baby. I don't CARE if you believe it to be killing. YOU should probably never have an abortion.
My mother had an abortion, and I am so glad she survived that WANTED pregnancy that was killing her. I got to have her back to raise my little sister and me. I got a little brother a couple years later. But the reality is that mom owed her children a mother. Not a sibling. At least she was smart enough to realize that. Abortion was illegal then. That's why she had to be at death's door before the pregnancy was terminated, even though she begged them to terminate it. I'm not really interested in going back to that time. And if there are any women that you love in your own life, you wouldn't be either.
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joshbrahm
I'm so sorry to hear what happened to your mom, Lady Black. :(
I don't think anybody here disagrees with abortion to save the life of the mother when there is no way to save both lives.
Whether or not there is a "baby" or "person" killed in elective abortions could lead to some productive dialogue though.
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lady_black
That's what happens when abortion is illegal. The least you could do is own it. The word "elective" is not synonymous with "unnecessary."
Here's the thing: Both my mother and Savita Halappanavar (in Ireland a couple years back) should have been given abortions because they ASKED for one. Neither one had viable pregnancies. That can't happen where abortion is illegal.
I myself have gone to great lengths to carry a pregnancy to term. That doesn't mean I expect that everyone else will, or even CAN. Without a very supportive family, it would have been out of the question. Without access to welfare and Medicaid, it would have been out of the question. With my condition I certainly couldn't WORK.
The second you people start voting, NOT for people who will make abortion illegal, but for people who will make contraceptives of all kinds available widely and free, for people who will not shred the social safety nets but make them widely available for everyone, including low-income women and their children, I may begin to believe that you're serious about reducing abortion.
As long as you make it obvious that your real goal is to punish women, and especially so if they're poor, I won't listen to a word you have to say on the subject. Criminalizing something is way too easy. Putting your money and political support where your mouth is tells me you aren't taking the piss.
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Jim_H_Discus
Feel free to hold your breath. I doubt the "proabort" movement and PP will shed a tear. It is not a very effective threat.
Does the "proabort" movement even have some sort of pope, patriarch, or governing body that could speak for the thoughts and actions of all of them? If so, have you let them know of your demands and threats of self-affixation if they are not met?
You seem to have a quite exaggerated sense of your on importance making such demands or even thinking anyone really cares about what you think.
I was beginning to be interested in your thoughts before you made this megalomaniacal comment. It appears, you have some issues with reality so I would ask two things:
You do realize that if you hold your breath long enough, you will pass out and begin to breathe making your self affixation threat comical, at best, just sad at worst.
Also, you seemed quite rational in your one post and in this one you seem to have gone off the reality track. Were you taking meds when you wrote the first and since have stopped? It is like Jekyll and Hyde.
What's is up with that? Also, why is the "Tom" thing such a big deal?
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$93800276
Did you just refer to my use of "should I hold my breath" as a threat? My initial intuition of not wanting to engage with you was just validated Jim. I'm parting ways with you. Sayonara.
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Jim_H_Discus
You really have no sense of humor, do you?
As I said previously, feel free to do what you want. However, I assume no obligation to refrain from commenting on what you say.
I can't help but suspect that you wish to break contact because you have stated that you do not share the majority view of your gang back at LAN and wish to avoid further confirmation of it.
Also, you may have realized how silly your demands of a response from the proabort crowd was, as I pointed out:
Does the "proabort" movement even have some sort of pope, patriarch, or governing body that could speak for the thoughts and actions of all of them?
I do think that you show, at the very least, extreme mood swings and might wish to seek professional help.
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lady_black
Oh, go play with the ugly doll in your picture, fetus-fetishist.
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Crystal
I mean this respectfully but you could be banned for that (I am not the moderator here, Josh is); name-calling is not tolerated here:
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/comment-policy-2
Please read the comment policy before continuing to comment here. Thank you.
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joshbrahm
You had been warned before about our comments policy. You've shown a pattern of snarkiness and name-calling, on a forum where we promote respectful disagreement and open-minded dialogue. You've left me with no choice but to follow our comments policy and ban you. I'm sorry we couldn't have the kind of intellectual dialogue I was hoping for. Have a nice day.
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Crystal
Hi, did you see my comment about IrrationalHumanBeing below?
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joshbrahm
No, can you link to it?
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Crystal
Sure thing:
https://disqus.com/home/discussion/joshbrahm/why_pro_life_advocates_are_not_responsible_for_the_planned_parenthood_shooting/#comment-2535003545
I want you to know what he did on your website. I'll be frank, Josh: you need a rule for sexual harrassment on your commenting policy. Much of it occurred away from your presence but I would still recommend it, for the safety of any future commenters writing here. He took me for a lovely ride chock full of sexually inappropriate comments and then squashed me.
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lady_black
Who cares what term you use? You don't get to define me.
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Jim_H_Discus
Could you clarify what you mean by: "There is no such thing as someone who only supports abortion on demand." Are you saying people support things like contraception and abortion is their back up plan?
I found your comment that there are two words in the English language for a person who cannot exercise autonomy over his body interesting. If we consider the two words slave and prisoner, a slave has no say over his condition and has done nothing to cause it. Conversely a prisoner in jail is someone who has done something to cause his/her condition, so it may be a more appropriate metaphor.
The issue I have with people who talk about bodily autonomy and pregnancy is that, except in the case of rape, they have voluntarily participated in the action that has led to that loss of autonomy.
I agree with you that there should be way fewer abortions and that it can be accomplished without passing draconian legislation. I further agree that contraception (all kinds, but particularly LTRCs) should be widely available, and free. There have been various programs in the U.S. that have shown how effective that approach can be.
However, as you might know, there will doubtless be resistance because many pro-life supporters see such contraceptives as potentially abortive and that the chance they are outweighs their benefit.
I also agree social support should be robust. To me, it is a situation of putting your money where your mouth is. Unfortunately, it seems the conservative voices that condemn abortion the most also support social programs the least. It seems that their concern for the fetus only lasts while it is a fetus. Once it is out and properly a baby, it seems they think it should be on its own.
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lady_black
There is no act that anyone can "perform" that results in a loss of bodily autonomy. Not even the act of dying. I know what you're trying to imply. What right to determine what happens to his body does a male lose for engaging in sex? Because that reeks of double standard to me.
The fact is that even prisoners are not required to give of their bodily resources for the benefit of another party. Nor are corpses. That requires specific consent. For example, if you consent to donate a kidney, the doctor can't also help himself to a lobe of your liver while he's in there. Even though the liver lobe will grow back. It just wouldn't be right to take without consent.
Now we also know that consent to sex is not consent to pregnancy, and that consent is neither once for all time. Consent can be withdrawn at any time by a free person. That's in the middle of a sex act or in the middle of pregnancy. Whether that results in an abortion or a delivery depends upon the stage of gestation.
There is no such thing as "abortive contraception." That is a contradiction in terms, because an abortion can only happen once someone is actually pregnant. People are free to believe as they wish, but that has zero impact on the rights of another. So, effective contraception (IUDs, implants, sterilization) must be a part of the picture. Not becoming pregnant is clearly not the same as abortion, and you yourself admit the impact of LARCs on abortion rates.
I absolutely agree with you that it's a matter of putting your money where your mouth is. The problem is that too many aren't convinced of the truth in that statement. Anyone who thinks that reducing abortions will be simple, easy, and without costs isn't firing on all cylinders.
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Jim_H_Discus
"There is no act that anyone can "perform" that results in a loss of bodily autonomy."
In your previous comment, you said "...there are two words in the English language for a person who cannot exercise autonomy over his body. The two words are slave and prisoner."
You have lost me. It seems you are contradicting yourself. Does the act of incarcerating someone "result in the loss of bodily autonomy" or is there "no act that anyone can "perform" that results in a loss of bodily autonomy"?
"What right to determine what happens to his body does a male lose for engaging in sex? Because that reeks of double standard to me."
I don't think he loses any right, but it not a matter of fairness or standards, its a matter of biology.
"There is no such thing as "abortive contraception." That is a contradiction in terms, because an abortion can only happen once someone is actually pregnant."
You can only say that if you believe that pregnancy begins at implantation rather than conception. I believed that implantation was the consensus view. I was wrong and so are you. It turns out the majority of doctors go with conception.
"People are free to believe as they wish, but that has zero impact on the rights of another."
That is simply not true.Depending on who those people are or how many there are of them, their opinions can have a significant impact on the rights of many others.
"and you yourself admit the impact of LARCs on abortion rates."
Why wouldn't I admit how effective they are. It is simply a fact.
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lady_black
"You have lost me. It seems you are contradicting yourself. Does the act of incarcerating someone "result in the loss of bodily autonomy" or is there "no act that anyone can "perform" that results in a loss of bodily autonomy"?
An incarcerated person loses freedom of movement, which is a type of autonomy. He doesn't lose bodily autonomy. In particular, a female convict is not forced to carry a pregnancy.
"You can only say that if you believe that pregnancy begins at implantation rather than conception. I believed that implantation was the consensus view. I was wrong and so are you. It turns out the majority of doctors go with conception."
Wrong. And NO "the majority of doctors" do NOT go with "conception." I'M not even sure ANY of them do. You've no doubt heard of in-vitro (which means outside the body) fertilization? No doctor in his right mind would call a petri dish "pregnant." Nor once the embryos are implanted is the woman considered "pregnant" unless one of them implants and begins to grow a placenta.
"I'm not sure what the point of that comment is. Depending on who those people or how many there are of them, their opinions can have a significant impact on the rights of many others."
This is simply NO. Nope, nope, nope, nope, nope. Rights are not subjected to the whims of others. That would be mob rule. We DO have a Constitution, you know. The rights of everyone are protected from tyranny of the majority. I'm speaking of the United States. If you live in some dictatorship or theocracy, scratch that part, as it doesn't apply to you. IN the United States, it applies to me.
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Jim_H_Discus
"An incarcerated person loses freedom of movement, which is a type of autonomy. He doesn't lose bodily autonomy. In particular, a female convict is not forced to carry a pregnancy."
You are simple playing word games. But, that's fine lets look at it semantically: i.e., based on the meanings of the words:
Autonomy is simply an individual’s capacity for self-determination or self-governance. Bodily simply means of or concerning the body.
Bodily autonomy is therefore simply an individual's ability (synonym for capacity) to determination or govern their own body.
You admit that "An incarcerated person loses freedom of movement, which is a type of autonomy." So I would ask they lose the freedom of movement of what? The only logical response is their body, of course.
So, based on semantics; i.e., the meanings of the words involved, it is simply incorrect to say he doesn't lose bodily autonomy.
Conceptually, bodily autonomy is not limited to the reproductive aspect of the body. So, the fact that "a female convict is not forced to carry a pregnancy" may be true, it does nothing to negate the fact that controlling a convicts freedom of movement also results in a loss of their bodily autonomy.
"Wrong. And NO "the majority of doctors" do NOT go with "conception. I'M not even sure ANY of them do. ."
You need to read something other than whatever propaganda you have been reading and be better informed, and less dogmatic, with your assertions.
Implantation is not the consensus of the OB GYN's in the country and repeating negatives and using caps does not change that. In fact, implantation is the minority view.
A study of "Obstetrician-gynecologists' beliefs about when pregnancy begins" was published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology -- February 2012, Volume 206, Issue 2, Pages 132.e1–132.e7. it stated:
One-half of US obstetrician-gynecologists (57%) believe pregnancy begins at conception. Fewer (28%) believe it begins at implantation, and 16% are not sure.
"This is simply NO. Nope, nope, nope, nope, nope. Rights are not subjected to the whims of others. That would be mob rule. We DO have a Constitution, you know. The rights of everyone are protected from tyranny of the majority.
More repetition and caps. I have pretty well lost hope in a civil intelligent conversation with you, at this point, I'm glad this is almost over.
Your original comment was:
"People are free to believe as they wish, but that has zero impact on the rights of another."
How do you think rights are determined? For example you mentioned the constitution. Were the men who wrote the constitution not people who believed what they wished to believe, defied a king, and had a huge impact on the rights of a whole lot of "anothers". The rights of everyone are protected from tyranny of the majority as a direct result of their beliefs.
Have you ever read the Federalist Papers. It was a series of papers arguing for the ratification of the United States Constitution. No. 10 is an essay written by James Madison under the pseudonym Publius (under which all of The Federalist Papers were published),
Federalist No. 10 is among the most highly regarded of all American political writings. It addresses the question of how to guard against "factions", or groups of citizens, with interests contrary to the rights of others or the interests of the whole community. Madison argued that a strong, united republic would be better able to guard against those dangers than would smaller republics—for instance, the individual states. Opponents of the Constitution offered counterarguments to his position, which were substantially derived from the commentary of Montesquieu on this subject.
So the fact that rights are not subjected to the whims of others and that the rights of everyone are protected from tyranny of the majority are the results of the beliefs of people like Madison which had and do still have considerable impact.
.
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Wild_Bird
Nonsense. Actions have consequences. If a woman fails to take the necessary precautions to prevent a pregnancy before it happens, then at that point she should take responsibility for the baby that she, through her actions, has created.
You have totally perverted the true meaning of "slavery".
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Crystal
Responsibility argument, yes?
And yes, unborn persons are slaves to their parents.
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Wild_Bird
"Responsibility argument, yes?
And yes, unborn persons are slaves to their parents."
Your fundamental disregard for innocent unborn human life is, to put it mildly, morally indefensible.
From the right to life flow all other human rights. Without Life one cannot exercise Liberty, and without Liberty one cannot pursue Happiness. The right to life is a prerequisite for all other rights. Thus, the right to life is THE fundamental human right.
Just as slavery is a gross violation of human rights and an abomination, so is abortion. Today it is convenient for many like yourself to dismiss an unborn child as something only partially human or not human at all or a mere “slaves to their parents,” just as it was convenient two centuries ago for plantation owners to dismiss blacks as merely three-fifths of a person. Measuring human life by race or by cognitive capacity does not capture the
entire essence of being human, but rather limits the nature of being human to a convenient set of characteristics.
To deny the fundamental nature of the Right to Life is to deny the basis of all human rights. If, as you and your ilk suggest, we were to accept the assignment of arbitrary precedence to human rights, we then must permit the justification of any infringement upon the rights of another. In a society where anyone can elevate their right to liberty and the pursuit of happiness above another’s right to live, the weak are helpless before those who are able to assert their rights more strongly.
The laws of the selfish moral relativists on the pro-abortion ilk are the laws of convenience; they will cherish the rights of others until those rights interfere with their infinite capacity for self-interest.
The lengths that people on the pro-abortion side will go to justify the indefensible never ceases to amaze me.
Your reasoning demonstrates how utterly bereft pro-aborts are of compassion and basic human decency.
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Crystal
With respect, you misunderstand me. I am prolife, not pro-abort. I can sympathise with and share your frustration at the dehumanising of the unborn persons. I was simply remarking on your use of the responsibility argument because that is one our side uses a lot to say that abortion is wrong.
If you doubt my prolifism please read through the comment thread and you will see where I stand very quickly.
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Crystal
I was also noting that unborn persons are slaves via the law, not via my own personal views. IMO they are entitled to life from the moment of conception.
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lady_black
"IMO they are entitled to life from the moment of conception."
LOL. Well, they aren't going to GET it. That isn't how human reproduction even works. There's a lot of waste, and not one darn thing you can do about it.
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lady_black
No, they are not.
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joshbrahm
"Unborn persons are slaves to their parents."
Wait, what?
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Crystal
When people don't acknowledge your personhood legally, and they have the absolute right to kill you for whatever reason, then yes you are their slave. You're at their mercy, at their power, and there isn't a thing you can do about it unless someone speaks up for you.
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lady_black
There is no "baby." Babies are delivered or already born. And having an abortion IS taking responsibility. You just don't care for the method.
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James of Ireland
You have autonomy over your body and no one would argue that point. You cannot have autonomy over the unborn's RIGHTS when you feel like it. God given rights to life.There is a point in society where the line must be drawn or we will end up allowing the woman to be the CHOOSER of who lives and dies,ONLY! Where do we draw that line? Where women determine it to be? That is the problem..A woman does not have 4 arms and 2 heads. You sound like a progressive socialist,indeed. You use the word draconian, and the terms slave and prisoner. Wonder what that baby would call it when the mother can determine it's fate? MERCIFUL?
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lady_black
That fetus (not "baby") has no thoughts. So let's get that out of the way first. Secondly, I do NOT get to choose "who lives and who dies." But I sure as HELL get to choose what happens inside my own skin, and you do not.
I would no more seek your advice on my pregnancy than I would stop the trash collector and ask him for stock tips. You are not a doctor. You aren't a medical professional of any kind. You lack even any practical experience that might tend to lend credence to anything you have to say.
To put it bluntly, if there is any "line-drawing" to be done, it will be done by ME, with the advice of my medical doctor. Just as it was for every other surgery I have ever had done. I wouldn't ask you. I wouldn't even ask my own husband! It's not HIS NECK and it isn't yours, either. I would certainly tell my husband if I were planning to go through with any procedure, because I respect him. And because he respects me, his answer has always been "Whatever you decide is best."
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Jim_H_Discus
My point about getting yourself banned was about more than your use of the word proabort. You essentially said you give as good as you get on such sites and it just gets in getting you banned. That means you accomplish nothing. Like Josh, whose site we are on, I fail to see that as productive and I certainly wouldn't brag about it.
I actually do not believe it is factual untrue or intellectually dishonest to refer to people who believe in abortion-on-demand without apology as pro-abortion, particularly if they favor abortion over all other alternative.
However, the question in my mind is what does that accomplish? It is meant to be pejorative and only encourages the use of terms like "forced birther" in response. Why not just refer to people by the terms they self identify as prefer; i.e., pro-life or pro-choice?
It is a bit like referring to "gays" as "queers" and than wondering why they dismiss pretty much everything you say.
If you characterize your use of that word as only descriptive of those who support abortion-on-demand without apology. I must point out that I have (1) misunderstood your position and (2) point out you seem to be out of step with most pro-life people I've asked.
Most apply that term to anyone who does not share the view that, in its strictest approach, abortion should not be allowed in any reason, or, in its slighter more moderate form, in the case of the health of the mother.
If I have mischaracterized your position, I not only apologize, but I commend you for not merely being a follower. Do any of your friends back at LAN know this about you?
You misunderstand me, I am not determined to disregard the any intellectual dishonesty on the part of those who those who support abortion-on-demand without apology and I am not among their number. I take strong exception to any position that fails to see the fate of the fetus as a moral consideration and sees only the mother's interests as relevant. I waged that war on a site called Love, Joy and Feminism over at Pathos over that for some time before giving up on them.
If you are going to accuse me of intellectual dishonesty and bad faith arguments, I challenge you to show me where I have been inconsistent and/or dishonest in my argument, as well where I have every made an argument for abortion on demand.
If you can't do that you owe me an apology.
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James of Ireland
Personally, I have no problem being honest. Queer and Gay has two different meanings.. May sound rude, but you're saying play the game with their rules and allow them to make them up as we go forth. That is what happened with abortion. Millions have paid the price for word games. At some point those words just lacked any force to stop the action of slaughter! It-is time to be a little more rude towards the evil that is obvious. God help us if one is offended by a wrong moniker!
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Jim_H_Discus
Stereotyping anyone who disagrees and calling them pejorative names is immature and ineffective. It only serves to further polarize people on an important, but sensitive topic . For the past 40+ years, with close to 60 million abortions having occurred, its pretty safe to characterize the approach of the pro-life movement as pretty much a dismal failure.
But, if you want to support continuing to pursue a failing strategy, I certainly can't stop you. You can continue to be proud that you haven't compromised any of your lofty principles as nothing really changes.
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joshbrahm
Well said.
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Jim_H_Discus
Thank you.
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joshbrahm
I respectfully disagree with the use of the term "pro-abort," which I think is actually worse than "pro-abortion," another term I don't use. "Pro-abort" frankly sounds like a slur to me.
Some thoughts on "pro-abortion" here: http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/call-anybody-pro-abortion/
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$93800276
Hi Mr Brahm. I understand very well the underlying philosophical justification for this position. I think I explained my reasoning for using that descriptor fairly well.
I've been a prolife advocate since I was capable to formulate a belief system: I've seen it all, heard it all and experienced the many faces of our opposition that shaped my approach.
I'm not convinced from my years of interacting with the other camp that reducing ourselves to "turning the other cheek" and appeasement is always the best action to take.
Do I use this descriptor on purpose? Absolutely but not always. I would like nothing more than to stop using it but fear that only justifies abortion even more and empowers the hard - core prolife opponent. I reserve this descriptor for those that argue through deception and intellectual dishonesty about fetal development and other matters related to our struggle.
Perhaps I'm wrong on this, as I've been wrong many times.
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Crystal
I don't believe the use of the word "pro-abortion" is bad but I try to avoid "pro-abort" when discussing things properly with people (which is much of the time) because the intention is to discuss and persuade rather than turn people away.
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joshbrahm
Well-reasoned dissent is absolutely encouraged on this forum. If what got Thomas banned at pro-choice blogs was for disagreeing at all, that doesn't make me concerned about his communication methods. If on the other hand he got banned because he was coming across like a jerk, even unintentionally, that would concern me.
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Jim_H_Discus
Yes Josh. that is what makes your site so different than most. You expect people to act like grown-ups even if they disagree. That seems to be rare for any internet discussion/comment forums.
I find Thomas' use of the term "pro-abort" itself to be misrepresentative of the views of those he applies it to; i.e., anyone who is not pro-life in the strictest sense, which happens to be the majority of Americans. It is devise and inhibits finding common ground on the abortion issue.
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Crystal
"You expect people to act like grown-ups even if they disagree."
Yeah, that's the same reason I appreciate this website, because people are not allowed to abuse here.
How's it been going Jim? I've missed seeing you lately.
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Jim_H_Discus
I'm doing okay. How about yourself?
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Crystal
Fine (one great thing that happened recently is that I've found an awesome guy and we've become friends!), but I've missed you a lot, with your critical thinking skills that seemed to add muster to the conversations, Jim. I see you got yourself into a mess at LAN :(
I don't mean this insensitively but rather as a statement of fact - I do miss PJ4 too and I am unsure how to communicate with her as circumstantially speaking I'm in a tight squeeze and feel it would be risky to get an account :(
Would you mind coming to these pages and we can resume discussion there if you'd like:
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/friendship/
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/responding-to-the-astute-observation-that-i-am-a-man/
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/will-there-be-a-needed-spike-in-adoption-rates-if-abortion-becomes-illegal/
Thanks for stopping by!
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James of Ireland
I support you 100%! It takes guts to face the philosophical rationale of destroying a baby and hold your temper! Personally, I have no time for the defenders of such a repulsive act! Thank God, people like you do!
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eponymous1
It's interesting how differently the left treats Islamist shootings with explicitly ideological motive, and the one by that deranged guy who wasn't even affiliated with any Christian or pro-life group. In the former they try to deny the obvious and refuse to admit any connections as long as possible (my news feed that day went from "anti-government militia shooting" -- their hearts' truest desire -- to "workplace violence" to, finally and reluctantly dragged by the overwhelming evidence, to "terrorist shooting." Even then, the Administration then threatens Americans' speech, saying they'll criminalize criticism.
But when one lone, unaffiliated kook shoots people at a Banned Parenthood, all Christians, all pro-lifers, and the entire right are accused as if they'd pulled the trigger themselves.
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$93800276
Yes I agree Epo1. Unfortunately these unwarranted associations will get worse since the "pro-choice" movement is retreating with "clinic" closures in the face of losing ground in the legal arena. It's their last minute attempt to gain some type of leverage 😐
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kathleenjelinek
Totally agree. Just imagine if the San Bernadino muslims had shot up a planned parenthood clinic. What would the leftists have said? Probably not much.
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James of Ireland
No doubt about it. As time goes by I see nothing but a downturn in society as the blood continues to be spilled and rhetoric being more volatile in order to hide the screams in the womb! Imagine what it would be like to amplify that scream so the merciless abortionist can be condemned, with justification. Then it would end? No. Until reckoning day..there will be the evolutionist attitude of LESS than human!
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javelinaharker
Not at all; I merely expect that even killings in self-defence be investigated under the premise that a killing has occurred.
I can see clear to abortion as a last resort measure to preserve the life of the mother, under strict medical regulation; I can even see clear to therapeutic abortions for minors, as there is a precedent for children to be granted certain allowances under the law for killing (how can I rationally expect someone who is not legally permitted to drive or sign a contract to be held to adult standards in this?).
I cannot see clear to wholesale acceptance of abortion as a societal standard. And I have no doubt you're glad I'm not in charge; your pusillanimity would not be pandered to. I know the idea of being responsible and accountable can be terrifying to the weak.
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javelinaharker
Agreed to the first. Living a cowardly life among them.
No double standard in pusillanimity; I am referring to you directly, not all those who espouse similar views. If we want to ripple out, my goal is equity; can a man terminate his lover's pregnancy with ease, unconstrained by law, because he contributed 50% genetic material? Does he own that foetus?
Finally, no class, gender, colour or creed is "Sovereign" in a Democracy. No one has complete autonomy within an ethical, non-Monarchical societal structure. Women do not have any greater rights than any others.
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javelinaharker
The burden does not fall on women 100%. Ask the men required to pay child support for children proven not to be theirs. They did not even get the pleasure of that grunt and squirt to be accountable for 18+ years of payment.
http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/07/11/paternity.cases/index.html?eref=yahoo
What constitutes the line of unborn sentience, "real live people", etc continues to be challenged by increasingly more refined scientific and technological parameters. But I must commend you -- when you write "And the unborn do not have any greater rights than fully live and sentient people.", you recognise they have equal rights to life. Definitely not greater: I agree. Equal.
So they have a right to life, just as you and I do.
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lady_black
They have no right to life at someone else's bodily expense.
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javelinaharker
That is one opinion, certainly. Another is that a life created wilfully through conscious action is ethically owed care and consideration by its creators.
This is the foundation of child support payments and neglect laws, after all.
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lady_black
That's true, and also applies only to born children. If you can find me any case where a man has been ordered to pay child support for a fetus, or a miscarriage or stillbirth, I'd love to read it. I would be opposed to ordering child support for fetuses, of course. They have no economic needs.
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javelinaharker
Oh, that's a straw man. Foetuses are not really considered people unless the carrying woman says so, just as men are not compelled to support their pregnant partners simply by virtue of them being pregnant.
However, it gets a little complicated at foetal killing. The mother may choose to do so. The father may not force her (legally) to do so, even if it poses no more risk or harm to her than a standard medical abortion. This adds the layer as you've noted of the mother's biological autonomy in addition to the personhood of the foetus.
This boils down to a particular difference in vision as to how much emphasis female voice and biology be given as weighed against the rights of non-women.
As I do not believe I should be given any special abilities as a woman under the law than either a man or even a foetus (as the unborn largely meet my benchmark for what is a human being), I must reject abortion (among other things, like affirmative action) unless or until a man has the right to terminate his offspring under the same conditions women can.
If the foetus is not a person, and the abortion is performed under standard medical care and risk (which is widely viewed as extremely low), why should the biological father not be able to terminate with the same freedom as the mother?
Unfortunately "because she feels a certain way" is not a good legal precedent; and the mere facts of her biology, if upheld, open the door for the mere facts of the foetus' biology to be considered equally. Why does one biology trump another?
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lady_black
Well OF COURSE he cannot force his pregnant partner to have an abortion. He doesn't own her body. That's slavery.
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javelinaharker
Does the woman "own" the foetus' body? No? But the law allows for the foetus to be recognised as a separate charge, if they both are killed.
If I accept special graft simply for my biology and female identity, I can never complain when I am dismissed or insulted or denied jobs for it. My female standing as a protected class, in need of more allowances than men because I have a uterus, is already legally recognised.
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Crystal
Hi, Javelina, it's Crystal. Thanks for your patience and civility :)
I read through your conversation last week, and wanted desperately to chat with you about the nature of criminalisation and a few other topics because I don't mind a little healthy debate.
"If I accept special graft simply for my biology and female identity, I
can never complain when I am dismissed or insulted or denied jobs for
it."
With respect, I must disagree, because women should never tolerate being dismissed, insulted, or denied jobs for being a woman, if I am reading you correctly.
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javelinaharker
Hi Crystal. :)
I agree that women should never be treated badly simply because they're women.
The other side of that coin is that women should never be granted extra privilege simply because they're women.
Abortion is a deeply feminist topic for me; I simply think, in application, the pro-choice side is truly turning women into "the weaker sex -- needless slaves to their biology -- instead of establishing equity with men.
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Crystal
Please come back here more often, Javelina. I appreciate your contributions.
I think you're right about privilege as applied to women. However, sometimes women should at least have certain advantages tailored to suit their needs, like menstrual leave, for instance. Have you heard of it?
"Abortion is a deeply feminist topic for me; I simply think, in
application, the pro-choice side is truly turning women into "the weaker
sex -- needless slaves to their biology -- instead of establishing
equity with men."
How is it doing that?
BTW I'm prolife.
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javelinaharker
Good heavens, menstrual leave as opposed to the same sick leave men can claim? No, never heard of it, and I'd never claim it. To do so would reinforce to my employer that I am only an equal employee when my uterus wasn't active. I wouldn't support especial prostate or priapism leave, either. Leave is leave.
My stance that the pro-choice movement as a whole is setting back gender equity is fairly straightforward: Women are legally granted the right to terminate a foetus solely based on being women.
Given that:
  • pregnancy is largely foreseeable and overwhelmingly preventable; and
  • a woman cannot conceive alone; and
  • men are held responsible for their contribution to their offspring post-birth despite having no ability to dictate the birth of their offspring under the law, and
  • an individual can be held liable for the death of a foetus during a murder, and
  • the determination that a foetus is a person vs. being a non-person can be as illogical as a few seconds of lung use in the open air, then
    QED, the law follows a narrative not based in science or gender equity, but based in "sympathy" for women, and gives them an unjust weight based solely on having female parts. I do not want sympathy (or laud) for being born with lady parts.
    I wholly reject being judged solely on having female parts. I do not want laws in place that canonise being female as requiring injustice to others. To do so lessens me.
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Crystal
You have a very interesting perspective on menstrual leave. I tend to agree with it precisely because women's bodies work differently from men's and because menstruation can be used as a time to rest, recuperate, and gain new insights if it is believed in and loved properly. Menstruation is not treated with enough respect by the West and a few other cultures, I'm afraid. I realise it's an old-fashioned notion to allow women to rest or take time off for emotional vacation (as they're having pleasant ones in that case) during that time, but it's one I believe in as it is strongly supported by so many other cultures and I have seen the benefits of it in my life.
It is a known fact that pregnancy can kill women, hence the intense desire to allow women that leave of absence from responsibility. Furthermore, men don't have to suffer any potential drawbacks to pregnancy, although they do have their wallets sucked dry.
However, I agree with your point that women can take innocent life simply because they are women. That is not just to the unborn person, I think. You have explained your position very well and have given me thoughts I never considered before, so thanks. I think they are injustices too, but not so much to gender equality outside the womb as to all unborn persons, male and female alike. I wonder about the unborn women who should have had careers and equal pay. Apparently, their rights don't count in the womb because they're "intruders" if the woman doesn't want them.
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javelinaharker
You're making me think too, Crystal, which is a gift I appreciate. Disqus, overall, has been incredibly useful at helping me refine my beliefs through both challenge and support.
Menstruation is a real thing, and is not treated (IMO) with balance currently. I support women in the military on principle, for example, but pretending it doesn't exist and doesn't affect performance (especially in Infantry) is foolish to me. Both the push to pretend women are the same as men in practice, and the glorification of its superficial byproducts as a feminist icon, gloss over the very truths it represents: women are different, we are life-bearers, necessary to society on a significant level.
Pregnancy can be harrowing. I am sympathetic to fears of it, especially because my own nearly killed me. I always come back, though, both to the fact that I knew this going into it and accepted the risk, and that my own diligent and exacting birth control/sexual refusal practices meant I really did choose my own risk. Eyes wide open.
I worry about the infantilisation present in (at least my own country's) abortion laws. When women are given a free pass for reckless or thoughtless action, while men are not, what does it say for women's ability to make sound judgements and bear accountability as men do? Are we not as smart, prepared, and brave as them?
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Crystal
Thanks for responding back with civility, Javelina. I appreciate your bluntness.
As for menstruation, it is treated as dirty and secret, rather than as the following: 1) an important part of being a woman
2) the quintessence of female sexuality
3) a spiritual, mind-opening experience where a woman finds she is more logical, more emotional, more intuitive, more spiritual, more everything good
I am at present on my own menstrual journey. I have experienced both painless menarche and agonising periods where I had to spend the day in bed, but am getting back up on the scale, and working hard towards painlessness.
A couple articles that have helped me are things like this, as they helped me to try to value menstruation again:
http://jarm.journals.yorku.ca/index.php/jarm/article/download/18049/16812
http://www.academia.edu/3684332/The_Value_of_Menstruation_Positive_Meanings_of_the_Female_Lived-Body_Experience
I wrote up a long comment about why abortion is so damaging to society from a spiritual perspective as well; I hope you can read it sometime, and I reference Sharon Maloney, PhD's work as well:
http://blog.secularprolife.org/2015/12/what-creates-babies-sex-or-choices.html#comment-2404203985
Also women can reduce or even overcome negative PMS. One reason negative PMS affects performance so much is that society doesn't attend to women's needs. Also, in the West, we use a lot of contaminants; I deal with that a little in these comments:
https://disqus.com/home/discussion/friendlyatheist1/nine_dead_in_charleston_church_shooting/#comment-2404526780
https://disqus.com/home/discussion/friendlyatheist1/nine_dead_in_charleston_church_shooting/#comment-2401058416
The thing is, unborn persons will be affected by their environment, and if we don't keep women healthy for their own sakes, they will definitely have a more difficult time having children as well as being a woman during certain times of the month. So women's talk is essential to caring for pregnant persons, and far more tied into prolife causes than we think.
Thanks for not downplaying the difficulties of pregnancy. So many prolifers do it and it's not good. Very interesting perspective on abortion weakening and infantilising women too.
I'll write up more on your thoughts later, but please let PJ4, her friend Infadelicious, and Shifty, know they have to comment at Secular Pro-Life Perspectives if they want to see me again.
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Crystal
Here’s the more I promised.
Menstruation is beginning to be recaptured by certain groups of feminists as the special gift that it is. You’re right, we can’t pretend that women are the same as men biologically because they’re not. Yet the gift of biological femininity has been cursed and spat on by a patriarchal society that hates the fact that this
one thing is out of their power (I hope you don’t mind my saying that).
As I mentioned before, I appreciate the fact you don’t downplay the downsides of pregnancy and pretend that every baby comes out in a puff of smoke. I personally consider it very important to encourage women to search out either medical, natural, or
spiritual methods to overcome pain and discomfort in childbearing. We need to talk about it more, especially if we’re encouraging a woman to keep her baby. Feminine biology is much more spiritual than we realise and when we deny that,
we do ourselves great harm.
For the record I am tokophobic which seriously affects my views on childbearing. I find it both arousing (if painless but effort-filled) and terrifying (if painful). Here’s my story about struggling with tokophobia for years and finally beginning to recover from it:
http://blog.secularprolife.org/2015/10/i-am-equal-not-same.html#comment-2309219176
So I thank you for your sympathy. I also recognise that many advocates for legal abortion want children of their own, and cherish their children. The only difference between them and us is that they see the extension of life as a gift from the mother which can be withdrawn at her will, and we see the extension of
life as a gift from God which can only be withdrawn with the Higher Power’s consent.
“I always come back, though, both to the fact that I knew this going into it and accepted the risk, and that my own diligent and exacting birth control/sexual refusal practices meant I really did choose my own risk. Eyes wide open.”
I must respectfully disagree. I take the pro-“choice” view that consent to sex is not consent to pregnancy very seriously, because unborn persons are gifts from God rather than punishments for having sex whilst in possession of a uterus, and
stating the traditional pro-life view on the issue seems to lessen the worth of unborn persons, because it emphasises that what the couple did was a mistake; unborn people are not mistakes but opportunities for spiritual growth and life. However, I also realise that I have a responsibility to all humans (especially life I created) to cherish and love them, and protect their right to live, so on that level I can empathise with the responsibility argument. I would not
blame myself if ever I became pregnant outside of marriage. I would see it as an opportunity, a gift from God, a way to fulfil childbearing desires, a way to bless either myself or someone else reliable who wants to raise the child. I would not have an abortion, and would strongly discourage anyone else from
doing so because the moral repercussions of such an act are serious with long-lasting consequences. So what you say, with respect, reads to me like self-blame. You have nothing to reproach yourself wherewith, and you would not deserve to die just because you took a “risk” to have sex, even with stringent
BC and sexual refusal practices. Perhaps I am misunderstanding you but I take the view that women’s lives are very important and they shouldn’t be downplayed because of a “mistake”. Again, on rereading, it seems as if you did your best to be careful if you didn’t want to be pregnant but accepted the fact it could happen.
“I worry about the infantilisation present in (at least my own country's) abortion laws. When women are given a free pass for reckless or thoughtless action, while men are not, what does it say for women's ability to make sound judgements and bear
accountability as men do? Are we not as smart, prepared, and brave as them?”
Would you mind stretching my mind a little more by expounding exactly on what you mean by infantilisation in general, plus infantilisation in your own country, because I have heard the opposite view for a while. It is that women do not bear the same
risk as men, but a far greater one, because their lives are on the line every time they get pregnant. Therefore, to state that financial support is the same equally as pregnancy is downplaying the female contribution. I have to agree yet am very open to hearing a different opinion.
I think women get a free pass on pregnancy, due to biology, a lot of the time. Whereas men have to pay a lot of money which won’t impact their health or lives at all, although it will impact their pocketbooks a lot. Which is why they push women to get abortions, I think.
I believe I begin to see your reasoning. Due to the unfair burden placed on men to pay child support and take responsibility for their actions, men in turn pressure women to take the free road out (the abortion) so they do not have the unfair burden placed on them. Although quite a few advocates for legal abortion will
insist loud and clear that men should not have to pay child support if they don’t want to. I think in a way you could be onto something here. Giving men more responsibility does place them in a headship position over us rather, doesn’t it? So therefore, they can command us to have an abortion so we can be
available to them twenty-four-seven, and also so they don’t have to pay financially, correct? If you’re right, isn’t that making us into sex toys in the sense of conforming our bodies to what they want rather than being ourselves? Although advocates for legal abortion will insist that abortion is something that sets women free in every way – sexually, financially, etc. Due to the current way society views fertility as being in the man’s domain and not
the woman’s, and also due to the fact that contraception, sterilisation, and abortion have decreased the fear of pregnancy, I can understand their reasoning as well. I am for contraception and voluntary sterilisation due to the fact that they grant women this well-deserved freedom from the fear of pregnancy, as
no woman should be open to life except through her own volition, YET I cannot call the practice of denying an unborn person his/her life anything short of abominable.
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javelinaharker
I've read this over carefully, and even where we disagree I don't think your reasoning is specious, merely different.
I believe much of our difference comes from a spiritual divergence; for me, God plays no part in birth, abortion or womanhood. For me, it is a very practical, biological framework.
Tokophobia can be crippling (one of my dear friends has it, and it made Nursing very difficult at times for her). I'm impressed you recognise and own it.
The line between self-blame and self-accountability can be small (illustrated best in rape culture arguments). For me, it's more of a neutral, observational standpoint. If I play hockey without a helmet and get my teeth knocked out, is it the fault of the other player or did I take an assumed risk? I don't apply emotional burden on the idea of "mistakes" or errors or even bad choices; they are what they are.
When women are granted reprieve that men are not, it means they are held to a lower standard of personal responsibility. This essentially puts women in the "child" class, hence infantilisation, and is exactly the train of thought that kept women from having the same freedoms (education, dress, driving, voting) for so long, and put "hysteria" as a commitable mental illness.
Men are accountable from the second their sweat dries. Women are not, unless they choose to be so. That is a terrifying imbalance of power, to me, especially in light of paternity fraud and the fact that some men feel the loss of the unborn just as acutely as women who miscarry. The law has made me an unwilling and potentially capricious tyrant -- again, a child holding a loaded gun who will face no punishment if I squeeze.
Where I live, abortion is unrestricted. This means fully viable babies may be terminated at will, for free. The lack of financial requirement results in even more of a "free pass", and multiple abortions are common.
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Crystal
I'll write up more on your thoughts later, but please let PJ4, her
friend Infadelicious, and Shifty, know they have to comment at Secular
Pro-Life Perspectives if they want to see me again.
Also, since I think you might not come back, that's where I'll be if you want to chat again.
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javelinaharker
Kindly, Crystal, I don't message run (self preservation primarily). The Upvote Gang is not nearly so deliberate as to have Moriarty's spiderweb network. :)
However, if they (PJ4, Infa, Shifty) read this they will know. I've enjoyed our correspondence in a remarkably non-trolly way, and I'm sure we'll cross paths again.
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Crystal
http://blog.secularprolife.org/
That's another prolife website I write my comments up at. They're looser than this one in what they'll allow and what they won't.
Shall we carry our conversation there? It was getting very interesting and I don't want to miss your further contributions, LOL :)
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lady_black
Nonsense. You don't get rights because of your uterus. I have no uterus, and all the same rights you have. And neither of us have any right to any organ that belongs to another.
No the woman doesn't "own" the fetus. But she does own her uterus, and as such gets final say on what it's used for. You know (and I'm not trying to be a smartass), I have never heard an anti-abortion argument that couldn't be used to justify rape. That's right. I don't care what my vagina is "for." It's mine, and I get to decide who uses it and how. And I can kill to keep that right.
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Crystal
Okay, I hope you don't mind if I ask you what type of bodily autonomy you believe in.
Quotes taken from the following:
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/autumn-in-the-sovereign-zone-why-its-my-body-i-can-do-what-i-want-wont-do/
"The Right to Refuse Argument states that even if the unborn is a
human being, a woman has the right to refuse to allow the unborn the use
of her body."
"The Sovereign Zone Argument states that even if the
unborn is a human being, a woman should still be able to have an
abortion because she has the right to do anything she wants with
anything inside the sovereign zone of her body."
Which one is it?
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lady_black
Bodily autonomy is a pretty basic concept, Crystal. It means nobody is ever entitled to anything from your body without consent. Even if you're a corpse.
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Crystal
That makes sense. So I take it you believe that even if the unborn is a human being, a woman has the right to refuse to allow the unborn the use of her body?
I ask not because I'm dumb but because I want to get it right, and also because others see bodily autonomy a little differently, as I described in my previous reply.
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lady_black
Yes, she does. She isn't, after all, property.
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Crystal
Thanks, that was what I was looking for. Right to Refuse. Got it.
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javelinaharker
Having a uterus grants a woman to kill a conceived organism she only contributed 50% to the creation of, merely because her uterus carries it. That's a lot of power.
If we do not have rights to organs that are not ours, then a woman cannot ethically donate the organs of that foetus.
I agree a woman can dictate what her reproductive organs are used for -- which is why I come down so heavily on rapists and why I staunchly advocate for birth control. Except in the rare and horrible cases of rape, a woman does indeed have the ability to stop her uterus from being used to house a baby... before it happens.
Afterward is when the lines become drawn -- because there is a question of where her body stops and another's begins.
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lady_black
Yes, women CAN ethically donate the fetal tissue. And she can donate the organs of her born minor children after they die untimely as well. Why? Certainly not "because she has a uterus." But because in the case of a fetus, the tissue was removed from her body. In the case of a minor child (say an anencephalic infant) because she is the natural parent who has certain legal rights over the disposition of remains of her child. That's just how it works.
Like most anti-choice people, you are making value judgments about how women have sex. Otherwise, you wouldn't so easily assign less value to a fetus conceived in rape to one conceived in love. To me, there is no difference. She can house or decline to house either one. I can conclude that to you, it's not about a fetus. There is no line to draw. Her body is always hers.
I have nothing but admiration for organ donors, and whole body donors. Their selfless donation makes it possible to save lives and improve the lives of many others. You're barking up the wrong tree if you expect that to disgust me.
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javelinaharker
I don't expect anything about you. :)
So sometimes we do have rights over organs that aren't ours. Excellent! So a foetus piggybacking on its mother's living organs should not be a disgusting idea; that's just how it works.
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lady_black
Uh, NO we do not have rights over organs that aren't ours as regards adult human beings and adult corpses. You need to pay closer attention. I said PARENTS have rights over the DISPOSITION of their minor children's remains until such time as the child becomes an adult.
Parents can also compel their LIVING minor children to undergo medical treatment, up to and including surgery, but even that includes no right to make an organ donor of a living minor child.
The implications are that all babies and children who need organ transplants must obtain them from babies and children who have passed on, because until they grow large enough to accept adult organs, there are no living donors for them.
Trust me, if it were you or your child, you would develop a deep appreciation for the generous donations of people in tragic situations. They care enough about others to make that sacrifice. I myself have cadaver donor tissue in my own body, and it's greatly enhanced the quality of my life. I have nothing but gratitude for the anonymous donor. So much so that I wrote letter to their families, letting them know how their unselfish gift made a big difference to a real person, rather than an abstract idea. I think they deserved to know that. And my desire is to return the favor when the time comes. I am a registered organ donor.
It's the right thing to do.
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javelinaharker
I'm a registered organ donor too (not that most of mine will be useful when the time comes), and I gave blood like clockwork until I was prohibited from doing so.
This is not about organ donation. It is about your challengeable statements about who has what right to whose organs, and the rationale for such.
If a mother has the authority over her child's organ donation, why does she not have the coin's flip side of care for those organs? Why is she only responsible in the negative, especially in utero?
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Crystal
Thanks for your common sense, Javelina. I never thought of it that way before.
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javelinaharker
It's merely a thought facet. In born children, the mother has both a duty of care to a recognised person as well as authority over their medical decisions.
In unborn children, there is no duty of care but similar authority, despite scientific evidence of individual personhood (especially at the point of development at which organs become biomedically useful).
Is this, yet again, an asymmetric example of "Mother knows best"?
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Crystal
The argument being employed a little is Thompson's Violinist. Have you heard that argument?
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javelinaharker
I have not. I will Google-Fu. :)
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Crystal
Thanks for looking, and thinking through it. Now you will know what you are up against a little better.
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javelinaharker
Okay, I've read it. :)
This is fairly easy to deconstruct, for me.
Consensual sex resulting in conception cannot be equated to forcible kidnapping. The Good Samaritan argument dissipates when the woman chooses to hook herself to the violinist, or even chooses the predictable roulette possibility of such.
A first year Crit-Think student could destroy this.
Edited to add: I'm not inclined to post here anymore. But I've enjoyed the discussion and give a nod for the breadth I've been given.
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Crystal
Fair enough. It would mean so very much if we could carry our discussion onto this page:
http://blog.secularprolife.org/2015/12/what-creates-babies-sex-or-choices.html
You could give your opinion of the article at the site and I could respond to you there not here.
As for that Thompson's Violinist, I have run into it commonly in my discussions with abortion advocates. It is such a confusing argument I nearly tear my hair out over it. Warning - if you debate with these people for a long time you will hear it, mark my words.
"Consensual sex resulting in conception cannot be equated to forcible kidnapping. The Good Samaritan argument dissipates when the woman chooses to hook herself to the violinist, or even chooses the predictable roulette possibility of such."
Ah, but you see, the point is, she chooses to allow the unborn person a chance at life, just like the woman choosing or being forced to be hooked to the violinist, and she can withdraw her consent at any time. So, in other words, you cannot use another person's organs without their consent, not even for your very life.
Ever heard of the court case McFall vs Shrimp; if not, I suggest you read this:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McFall_v._Shimp
This is one case that is being used by advocates for legal abortion to stop prolifers from winning in the legal sphere.
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lady_black
And I'm of the opinion that even if the woman consents to be hooked up to the violinist, she can withdraw her consent at any time. And my opinion reflects the legal reality of the situation.
You're arguing, in essence, that if I have consented to something, that consent is once for all time. Consent doesn't operate that way. I can withdraw consent in the middle of a sex act, in the middle of pregnancy, and yes, after a week or a month of hooking myself to the violinist. EVEN if he will die, and EVEN if he only needs it for nine months.
The fact of the matter is I don't owe it to him. His need doesn't create a right. And yes, it would be a tremendous act of Good Samaritanism, regardless of who did the hooking up.
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lady_black
Oh, and by the way, if he's pregnant, he has the right to an abortion. He cannot, however, force her to undergo any kind of surgery. Did you miss that memo?
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javelinaharker
Pregnant men are a misnomer; they may identify as such, but biological female parts are required.
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Crystal
They're known as transmen.
Have you heard of the Thomas Beatie case?
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javelinaharker
Yes, I know the terminology and the Beatie case. :) I give little shrift to trans terminology in terms of abortion, as identity has no bearing on what happens when sperm meets ovum.
I accept that "man" and "woman" are becoming increasingly irrelevant in social terminology, but speaking from a biological standpoint there are still benchmarks and I do not tailor my language to suit gender fluidity.
Beatie is a he socially. A she genetically and structurally. In this way there are no pregnant men (males). Beatie is not a man, but a trans man.
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wiffle
"I accept that "man" and "woman" are becoming increasingly irrelevant in social terminology, "
I don't. I'm resisting Wonderland. Tired of the Queen of Hearts ruling the conservation. ;)
"Beatie is not a man, but a trans man."
I'm not even willing to give that much ground in this particular topic.
She's a woman, who has successfully convinced the world for her own purposes that she is not. She was a model in her teens, for goodness sake.
Yes, she does pull off a tie very well in male manner. But her walk in Wonderland is going to mess up her kids. I don't have much patience for it.
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lady_black
Well, then you have your answer, don't you?
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Crystal
Shifty, with all due respect, please STOP the name-calling and READ Josh Brahm's commenting policy. Such offensive speech is not permitted on this site. I believe you have very interesting points to make but they must be made respectfully and according to his rules:
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/comment-policy-2
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Crystal
Yeah, RH Reality Check are confounded mean to prolife people. I will never comment there. It is such a hateful and charged atmosphere.
You ever commented there, PJ?
Also, I wish we could talk about this issue at depth a little more. Question for starters, PJ - what do you think of the claim that Operation Rescue is a terrorist group and why? Also how do you respond when people say you are being inconsistent by advocating for peace? Would sincerely appreciate an answer to the questions if that's okay.
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HeadBitchInCharge1
No
I've never commented there.
Even if you're nice, you're met with invective and nasty comments
Hmm....
What is it that OR has done to be called a terrorist group?
Id say that no ones perfect and I try my best to be nice
However, if I get attacked, I will not back down
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Crystal
I haven't commented on RH either. I'm a guest. But I've seen how vicious they can be.
I try to be nice. I love people and care about listening to what they have to say.
"What is it that OR has done to be called a terrorist group?"
Well! Saying abortion is murder (which is true). Saying doctors who perform abortions are murderers and the women who do them are too (I say caution with this because we want to reach people and help them understand rather than accusing them right out the gate). Then we don't advocate for violence. I got asked if I would be so kind to a nazi and then when I said no I'm informed prolifers don't really believe that ZEFs are truly persons because they won't be violent.
My responses to such faulty logic:
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/why-pro-life-advocates-are-not-responsible-for-the-planned-parenthood-shooting/#comment-2387892637
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/why-pro-life-advocates-are-not-responsible-for-the-planned-parenthood-shooting/#comment-2393898255
http://blog.equalrightsinstitute.com/why-pro-life-advocates-are-not-responsible-for-the-planned-parenthood-shooting/#comment-2389713979