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moonbeam
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125 posted 10-12-2008 04:47 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Stephen, for example, a position based exclusively upon the 6th commandment (or any other biblical text) which would prevent a woman having an abortion in nearly all circumstances.

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126 posted 10-12-2008 09:06 AM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

I always assumed, I guess incorrectly, that those who were pro-choice did not believe that what they were terminating was a 'life'.

Terminating a life is killing, in my book, regardless of the 6th commandment. What is it called in your book, Moonbeam?


And what gives anyone the right to have the choice to kill another?
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127 posted 10-12-2008 09:19 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Moonbeam,

The Pro-life position is not "based" upon the 6th commandment in any special way.  It's not as if the Pro-Life side and the Abortion-rights side are in disagreement about whether or not innocent human life should be terminated.  They are already in agreement on this moral principle.  So though some pro-life-advocates use the 6th Commandment to argue that point, I don't think that's where the disagreement lies.   I think the Pro-life position has to do more with the assertion that a fetus is indeed a human life.  And being so, it makes perfect sense that the use of abortion should be either totally eliminated or greatly limited.  I myself (for example) am not against it if it is in order to save the Mother's life.  


Stephen  
moonbeam
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128 posted 10-12-2008 02:28 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam



quote:
The Pro-life position is not "based" upon the 6th commandment in any special way.

I didn't say it was.  You asked me for an extreme position, I gave you one.
quote:
It's not as if the Pro-Life side and the Abortion-rights side are in disagreement about whether or not innocent human life should be terminated.  They are already in agreement on this moral principle.  So though some pro-life-advocates use the 6th Commandment to argue that point, I don't think that's where the disagreement lies.   I think the Pro-life position has to do more with the assertion that a fetus is indeed a human life.  And being so, it makes perfect sense that the use of abortion should be either totally eliminated or greatly limited.  I myself (for example) am not against it if it is in order to save the Mother's life.  

Good.  I'd go a bit further than you towards the "mother's position", and also I disagree that the best starting point is illegality.  But I've already set out my position in detail in the previous posts.  All I'd add is that these "labels" (pro this pro that) are not helpful imo, I, for instance am quite happy to accept a foetus maybe a human life (unlike the mainstream pro-choicers if I understand you correctly), simply because I don't think anyone really knows one way or the other.  I'm equally prepared to face up to the realities of the horrible dilemmas that arise and accept that termination of that life may sometimes be the lesser of two evils, and that sometimes it won't be.  
quote:
Terminating a life is killing, in my book, regardless of the 6th commandment. What is it called in your book, Moonbeam?

Killing Denise.
quote:
And what gives anyone the right to have the choice to kill another?

The right (instinct) of self preservation/self defence, Denise.   The same right in fact that allowed you to pump all those bullets into the guy who was about to murder your kids way up there in this thread, and also the same instinct that allowed you to kill 100 tourists instead of just your daughter.
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129 posted 10-12-2008 09:33 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Yeah, I guess those unborn babies are quite the dangerous group requiring self-defense measures taken against them. It seems to me they are the ones who need to be able to take self-protective measures.

And in your scenario about the 100 tourists, I didn't actively kill them. I chose not to throw a switch that would have saved them, but would have killed my daughter. Throwing the switch would have been actively killing my daughter.    
moonbeam
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130 posted 10-13-2008 04:42 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Denise, as long as you see the foetus as the only helpless victim we're not going to find much common ground.     
quote:
I chose not to throw a switch which would have saved them, but would have killed my daughter.  Throwing the switch would have been actively killing my daughter.

So, can I take it that if the empty train had been on your daughter's line you would have allowed it to kill her and let the tourists live?
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131 posted 10-13-2008 09:03 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

quote:
Me: The Pro-life position is not "based" upon the 6th commandment in any special way.


Moonbeam:  I didn't say it was.  You asked me for an extreme position, I gave you one.

If to not kill innocent human life is a moral imperative of both Pro-life advocates and Abortion-rights advocates, then how is it an "extreme position"?  

Remember, I only said that the Pro-life position isn't based upon the 6th Commandment because the self-same moral imperative is already accepted by the non-religious as well.  Hardly "extreme", those you describe could at worst be charged with redundancy or superfluous argumentation.

If their polemic is that people should revere God and worship him, it is a reasonable one, (and one that fits best with the moral standards of all sides of the debate) ... but it is technically different than the pro-life position.

  
Moonbeam:
quote:
I, for instance am quite happy to accept a foetus maybe a human life (unlike the mainstream pro-choicers if I understand you correctly), simply because I don't think anyone really knows one way or the other.  I'm equally prepared to face up to the realities of the horrible dilemmas that arise and accept that termination of that life may sometimes be the lesser of two evils, and that sometimes it won't be.


Lets say you did accept the humanity of the fetus, and still felt that killing the unborn human-being should be justified in some cases (beyond those in which the Mother's physical life is in jeopardy) ... isn't this more the extreme position?

But rather than just accuse you of extremism, I would rather ask you this question ...  What moral principle would trump the right of an innocent human being to live?  Would the right to personal choice of an already living mother trump the basic right of another human being to live and not be killed?  Would her right to pursuit happiness or procure for herself as much financial relief as possible supercede the right to life of another person?  Would her right to lawfully eliminate as much pain as possible from her life, supplant the right to life of another human being?

Do you think it should not be against the law to steal, simply because people who steal are sometimes very hungry?  

It seems the scenario you've given to Denise is hardly fitting, since most abortions do not have to do with saving another's life.  And the ones which do, we've already conceded as unhappily necessary.

quote:
also I disagree that the best starting point is illegality.


I don't think you really disagree with me, since I never said that the "starting point" is illegality.  Though I believe abortion should be illegal (simply to protect human life), that is only a part of a larger whole.  And there are many lines of action, and attempts at reform going on concurrently to address the social problems you mention.

Stephen
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132 posted 10-13-2008 09:03 AM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

There is the extremely rare case where the mother's life would be in danger if she continued the pregnancy. That is the only instance of self-preservation, in my opinion, where it would be morally acceptable to terminate. Can you add any other examples of when it would be self-defensive/self-protective to abort? Being young, poor, unmarried, emotionally upset by the concept of being responsible for raising a child, being prone to headaches/migranes, not wanting to risk losing your figure,not wanting "to be punished with a baby" for an indiscretion (per Obama), etc. are not.

I don't know what I would do if the situation were reversed in your scenario. But if I threw the switch to save my daughter, actively causing the 100 to die because of my actions, I would deserve to answer for that action in a court of law.
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133 posted 10-13-2008 09:31 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam


quote:
Can you add any other examples of when it would be self-defensive/self-protective to abort? Being young, poor, unmarried, emotionally upset by the concept of being responsible for raising a child, being prone to headaches/migranes, not wanting to risk losing your figure,not wanting "to be punished with a baby" for an indiscretion (per Obama), etc. are not.

Are they not indeed!  Well that's your opinion Denise.  I have my own opinion based upon 25 years of voluntary work in the UK CAB and what derives from that.  I can add many many detailed examples, which however I do not propose to do in this forum.  If you want to e-mail me I might be prepared to share some experiences.  But if you come to the discussion with the attitude that killing foetuses is against the will of god, period, I don't really want to spend the time.  

[This message has been edited by moonbeam (10-13-2008 10:11 AM).]

moonbeam
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134 posted 10-13-2008 10:05 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam


quote:
If to not kill innocent human life is a moral imperative of both Pro-life advocates and Abortion-rights advocates, then how is it an "extreme position"?  

Stephen I didn't say anything about "moral imperatives".  I didn't use the phrases  pro life or pro choice, and, as I keep hinting, (with no disrespect to you) people who use them are doing the serious debate a disservice imo.  I'm really not interested in what you feel the typical "pro lifer" does or doesn't base his/her position on; in this context you have to remember that the world is larger than the US and over here the phrase is rarely used.  All I said was that: "a position based exclusively upon the 6th commandment (or any other biblical text) which would prevent a woman having an abortion" would imo be extreme.  It's really rather simple Stephen.  I have sat in front of fathers, uncles, and churchgoing friends and listened while they delivered such religious based pronouncements on a pregnant girl.  Such opinions exist.  
quote:
Lets say you did accept the humanity of the fetus, and still felt that killing the unborn human-being should be justified in some cases (beyond those in which the Mother's physical life is in jeopardy) ... isn't this more the extreme position?

I have thought that on many occasions, especially in the case of very early terminations and very young women.  I feel completely at ease with nearly all the resolutions reached.  So no I don't regard it as extreme at all.  Rather the opposite actually, compassionate and caring.

quote:
What moral principle would trump the right of an innocent human being to live?  Would the right to personal choice of an already living mother trump the basic right of another human being to live and not be killed?  Would her right to pursuit happiness or procure for herself as much financial relief as possible supercede the right to life of another person?  Would her right to lawfully eliminate as much pain as possible from her life, supplant the right to life of another human being?

I think you (as in me) have to be honest about this.  There is no question that, having accepted that there is a possibility that a fertilized egg may be a human being in the first instant of conception, decisions made in abortion issues involve placing value on human life, usually on the basis that the less developed that life is the less valuable it is. There is an incredibly difficult and emotionally traumatic weighing to be done, which might for instance at one end of the scale be represented by a girl of 14, raped by her "boyfriend" and only a few weeks pregnant, and proceed to increasing degrees of difficulty from there.  And my answer to your last question in that list is now no doubt evident: yes possibly it might.

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135 posted 10-13-2008 04:06 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.


So let’s say a male survives a partial birth abortion.
And instead of putting him in a closet or a laundry
room until he dies the abortionist puts a needle
into that male’s head thereby completing the paid
task of a dead thing at the end of the procedure.
Is there another problem with that?  After all, the
first problem is it didn’t come out dead, (or something
to that effect,  I can’t find the quote).


.
moonbeam
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136 posted 10-13-2008 04:32 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Imo there's a problem with all abortion.  There's a problem with killing any entity.
Life's a problem Huan.  You muddle through and do your best in each circumstance as you find it according to your personal credo.

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137 posted 10-13-2008 04:37 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Moonbeam:  
quote:
I didn't use the phrases  pro life or pro choice, and, as I keep hinting, (with no disrespect to you) people who use them are doing the serious debate a disservice imo.


We'll just have to agree to disagree on that point.  The terms (like any) can of course be abused, but they can also be useful in discussions by clarifying one's position.  For example "Abortion-rights" is a pretty accurate term to describe someone who feels that woman's right to choose overrides the protection of the less-than-human fetus.  An avoidance of terms can sometimes be an avoidance of clarification.

quote:
All I said was that: "a position based exclusively upon the 6th commandment (or any other biblical text) which would prevent a woman having an abortion" would imo be extreme.  It's really rather simple Stephen.  I have sat in front of fathers, uncles, and churchgoing friends and listened while they delivered such religious based pronouncements on a pregnant girl.  Such opinions exist.


So they believe killing innnocent human life to be morally wrong (as affirms the 6th Commandment).  So do 99.99% of people who are for abortion rights.  I'm asking you to explain why their position is extreme, not merely to restate that it is.


quote:
Me: Lets say you did accept the humanity of the fetus, and still felt that killing the unborn human-being should be justified in some cases (beyond those in which the Mother's physical life is in jeopardy) ... isn't this more the extreme position?


Moonbeam::  I have thought that on many occasions, especially in the case of very early terminations and very young women.  I feel completely at ease with nearly all the resolutions reached.  So no I don't regard it as extreme at all.  Rather the opposite actually, compassionate and caring.


Since you said you would be open to the idea of the fetus being a human being, I asked you to imagine (for a moment) that it was certainly so ...

Within the context of believing the fetus to be a human being, can you give me an example of abortion that would be "compassionate and caring"?  (Remember that where the Mother's life is in Jeopardy I have already conceded that abortion may be morally justified).  


quote:
There is no question that, having accepted that there is a possibility that a fertilized egg may be a human being in the first instant of conception, decisions made in abortion issues involve placing value on human life, usually on the basis that the less developed that life is the less valuable it is.


Certainly the degree of attachment yields different emotional responses.  But our present legal reprobation of infanticide operates on the principle that the less-developed 1 week old baby is just as "human" as a 20 year old adult.  In fact many people (due to the defenselessness and innocence of the infant) would feel that ending the life of an infant to be worse than killing an adult.  If development has no bearing here (in our present laws), why should it be any different concerning the fetus?

quote:
Me: [quote]Would her right to lawfully eliminate as much pain as possible from her life, supplant the right to life of another human being?


Moonbeam: There is an incredibly difficult and emotionally traumatic weighing to be done, which might for instance at one end of the scale be represented by a girl of 14, raped by her "boyfriend" and only a few weeks pregnant, and proceed to increasing degrees of difficulty from there.


Okay you have given an example.  

My question is ... In other situations, would a woman's "right" to cope with the personal pain of rape, trump the right to life for another human being?  Should a woman psychologically traumatized by rape, who feels she can't continue with her motherly responsibilities, be allowed to abandon or kill her already born 1 year old infant for that reason?

If not, (as terrible as rape is) I don't think you have a valid argument to support the termination of an unborn human life either.  Why?  Because there is an ethical priority with the protection of human life, that takes precedence over measures to relieve the distress of traumatized woman.  

(Besides the whole idea that putting to death an unborn child conceived in rape would "make things better" is highly questionable anyway)


Finally Moonbeam, I will say this.  If you believe that such extreme situations might justify abortion, and yet that on-demand-abortions should be illegal, you share much in common with the typical pro-life position ... in fact if I understand you correctly, you are saying you are against most abortions since a very small percentage represent rape or the endangerment of the physical life of the mother.  And though I would urge you to continue to question your own thoughts about the more "difficult" situations as well, I am glad for the common ground we already have.


Stephen
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138 posted 10-14-2008 03:40 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K




Dear Stephanos,

          I addressed some comments to you in post number 124.  If you believe they're worth a comment, I'd appreciate hearing what you have to say.

     I think too little is made of women's right to choose when the word "right" is put into quotation marks, Stephanos, as though it were something debatable.  As if it were a point of dogma that might be usefully contested in some forum like this one.  I think that's the wrong assumption.

     Women have seemed to act as though abortion were a right whether it was criminalized or not over a very long period of time.  To me that makes it a right because people have chosen to put their lives and their freedom on the line to claim it time and time again despite the attempts of others to take that right away from them.  It is the sort of right that one exercises by being willing to make a choice and take whatever consequences come attached to it.

     Despite the number of times people seem to be willing to say "bad Girl!" and wiggle their fingers at them in disapproval or do some of the other less restrained things that people have done to women who've been willing to put it on the line in order to make this difficult decision a fact in the world, these women seem to have the stubborn sense that it really is their decision to make.  It is their right to make it.  And they will exercise that right.

     I haven't heard you say anything to address that.  I told you in the response I mentioned above why I thought that the issue was not being dealt with by the folks who pretend that they can take that right away from women.  Neither you nor any other folks on your side of the discussion has felt it important to deal with this stuff.  Yet these personal reasons are the reasons that most women will end up making the decision to have an abortion.

     If a mustering of mass religious and moral disapproval were actually the way of addressing the problem, I suspect the problem wouldf have been addressed by now.
I suggest to you that you don't want the problem dealt with, if in fact it is a problem.  That the goal of the anti-choice movement is not to alter the situation, but to make it seem to have gone away for the sake of appearances and to leave the basic problems that cause the situation untouched.  Women will not feel good about raising children in dangerous and loveless relationships.  They do not feel comfortable raising children in situations of abject poverty without hope for their children.  Women want to feel loved and supported in what they do in the world by their partners.  Women can feel depressed and overwhelmed given adverse social or political conditions.
Women have ambitions for themselves that do not always include being mothers.

     Excuse me, but until these issues are dealt with—at a minimum, until these issues are dealt with, and there will probably be others as well—abortion will continue to be an active alternative sought out by some women as a solution to the problems these situations bring up.

     If your commentary about the wrongness and sinfulness, or your questions about whether a fertus was a human being at the moment of conception actually addressed any of these issues, we would not need to be here talking about the subject.  Even with the full majesty of the law behind it, your particular set of values was not sufficient or even close.  Killing abortion providers certainly scares people, but it says more about how the anti-choice forces have missed the chance of actually dealing with the problems by means other than the attempt to impose terror on a reasonably subject population.  This is not a pretty picture.

     I am unsurprised that when I bring the subject up, it is widely greated by loud shouts of silence from all directions.  It's easier to keep the discussion away from what actually seem to be the primary concerns driving the needs for abortion in the first place.  It is a failure on the part of much of the community to help women deal with these issues that helps create the issue in the first place.
At least that's what I think.  Are there any women who have opinions they'd like to share about the issue as well?

Sincerely, Bob Kaven

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139 posted 10-14-2008 07:30 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

quote:
An avoidance of terms can sometimes be an avoidance of clarification.

And an attachment of labels can sometimes be an attempt to pigeon-hole issues which can't be usefully pigeon-holed.        
quote:
So they believe killing innnocent human life to be morally wrong (as affirms the 6th Commandment).  So do 99.99% of people who are for abortion rights.  I'm asking you to explain why their position is extreme, not merely to restate that it is.


No Stephen, you are using a Ron technique, writing the question you want me to answer for me!  I don't know why I'm having to explain this because you are surely already cognisant of the position even though you seem unwilling to acknowledge it.  The fact is that, however unsavoury it might sound to say it, there are different degrees of killing.  People, for example, might broadly agree that murdering a 2 year old is rather more worthy of condemnation that shooting a murderer who is about to kill your daughter.  Your attempt to simplify this down to a kill or not kill moral position, just as the attempt to simplify it to a pro or anti position, is not helpful to finding practical compassionate solutions to the problem.  

So in this case, with "extreme" meaning at one end of a spectrum, we have a guy sitting there saying: "this is a raped 14 year old girl, the foetus is only 6 weeks old, the girl is already descending into mental illness and on physically harmful drugs, but nevertheless she's still gonna have that baby because my god says that killing is wrong and I KNOW that that is a living breathing human being in there so it's gonna live whatever".

That statement implies certainty about the status of the foetus which imo the guy cannot possibly have, and certainty about the existence of his god, and certainty about the existence of the decree and certainty about the meaning of the decree implying an absolute which imo the guy also cannot possibly have.

That position is imo at one end of a spectrum, ergo "extreme".

If it helps at all I also have a problem with a view that says a woman should be able to do whatever she likes, whenever she likes.

quote:

    quote:Me: Lets say you did accept the humanity of the fetus, and still felt that killing the unborn human-being should be justified in some cases (beyond those in which the Mother's physical life is in jeopardy) ... isn't this more the extreme position?
    Moonbeam::  I have thought that on many occasions, especially in the case of very early terminations and very young women.  I feel completely at ease with nearly all the resolutions reached.  So no I don't regard it as extreme at all.  Rather the opposite actually, compassionate and caring.
Since you said you would be open to the idea of the fetus being a human being, I asked you to imagine (for a moment) that it was certainly so ...
Within the context of believing the fetus to be a human being, can you give me an example of abortion that would be "compassionate and caring"?  (Remember that where the Mother's life is in Jeopardy I have already conceded that abortion may be morally justified).  

Sorry Stephen I didn't address the hypothetical question you posed before. All I can do is speculate on my position in the eventuality that I became absolutely convinced that the "may" had been removed from "may be human"  As I am, by abortion advocate standards, inherently cautious I suspect that certainty about the humanness of a foetus wouldn't make that much difference to the circumstances under which I personally though an abortion was the right course.  If you want an example you have one above (a real one actually).  You see Stephen, you an I differ on the meaning of "life", there are plainly circumstances when a person might feel death is preferable to biological life and those circumstances can last for many years.  I've already demonstrated to Denise that even she would be prepared to kill another human, thereby attaching value to life, there are no absolutes in this.    

br>
quote:
Certainly the degree of attachment yields different emotional responses.  But our present legal reprobation of infanticide operates on the principle that the less-developed 1 week old baby is just as "human" as a 20 year old adult.  In fact many people (due to the defenselessness and innocence of the infant) would feel that ending the life of an infant to be worse than killing an adult.  If development has no bearing here (in our present laws), why should it be any different concerning the fetus?

My own person opinion (supported by UK law) is that emotional response is a very important part of decision making in abortion issues and that's part of the reason why I believe development does have a bearing here.
quote:
My question is ... In other situations, would a woman's "right" to cope with the personal pain of rape, trump the right to life for another human being?

And my answer is that there is no simple answer to that, as there is no simple answer to most of your questions.  As Bob has said, the practical position is that a woman has a choice, period.  The entity inside her is part of her body for a while and she can go off and do what she likes with her body and nobody can really stop her.  You can talk about "rights" and "moral imperatives" and "the sanctity of life" and "the will of God" till kingdom come (lol), those things don't help to find resolutions.  
quote:Because there is an ethical priority with the protection of human life, that takes precedence over measures to relieve the distress of traumatized woman.


I have ethical priorities too Stephen - I think there is an ethical priority with the protection of a pheasant's life that takes precedence over measures to give our local protestant parish clerk a joyful time on his Saturday afternoon shoot.  Even if I accepted your "ethical priority", which as you can see, may be in doubt, your statement doesn't work in the context of what I've said above, and the concept of attaching different value to different human life.

quote:
(Besides the whole idea that putting to death an unborn child conceived in rape would "make things better" is highly questionable anyway)


I couldn't agree more.  Everything about this issue is "questionable", that's what makes it so difficult.
quote:
Finally Moonbeam, I will say this.  If you believe that such extreme situations might justify abortion, and yet that on-demand-abortions should be illegal, you share much in common with the typical pro-life position

Like I keep repeating.  I am not sure the "typical pro-life" position exists in my sphere of operations.  You may be right, but as I am not sure what you mean I can't be sure.  I don't restrict myself rigidly to cases involving rape or potential loss of life because many other situations present significant challenges too, but what I am sure of is that abortion is never ever a good solution.  The idea of a woman using abortion as a form of casual contraception is abhorrent to me, and here, at least, abortions are illegal after 24 weeks (too long imo).

M
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Bob:
quote:
I think too little is made of women's right to choose when the word "right" is put into quotation marks, Stephanos, as though it were something debatable.


I've already explained Bob, that both sides of the debate believe in the right of women to make personal choices ... just as both sides of the debate believe in protecting "life".  The disagreement typically has been over whether the fetus is a human being or not.  For if it is, then the right of the mother to choose abortion immediately becomes debatable ... and historically it has been anyway, among both women and men, since it became a public issue, and one entangled in medicine and legality.  This should be understandable to you since you already understand that the protection of other human lives often trumps rights that we would otherwise be free to exercise.


Using terms like "Anti-Choice" or "Anti-Life" as slurs, only serve to irritate and to muddle the real issues of the debate.  That's why I have chosen to call the positions "Pro-Life" and "Abortion-Rights".  But I'm perfectly fine with "Anti-Abortion" and "Abortion-rights" as well.  I think any of these terms describe (as much as possible) the key points of each position.


quote:
Women have seemed to act as though abortion were a right whether it was criminalized or not over a very long period of time.  To me that makes it a right because people have chosen to put their lives and their freedom on the line to claim it time and time again despite the attempts of others to take that right away from them.  It is the sort of right that one exercises by being willing to make a choice and take whatever consequences come attached to it.


Actually Bob, this is a misleading statement by you.  It has never been unanimous among women whether abortion is a right, nor whether it is moral.  And I appreciate your admiration of courage and political boldness.  But that, ipso facto, can be no indication of rightness or goodness.  Historically we have seen people time and again sacrifice much for very wrong things.


quote:
Despite the number of times people seem to be willing to say "bad Girl!" and wiggle their fingers at them in disapproval or do some of the other less restrained things that people have done to women who've been willing to put it on the line in order to make this difficult decision a fact in the world, these women seem to have the stubborn sense that it really is their decision to make.  It is their right to make it.  And they will exercise that right.


Again Bob, are you saying that tenacity, perseverance, or stubborness is always in indication of rightness?  Neither the doing of something, nor the dogged determination that accompanies it, guarantees that it is a right.

quote:
I told you in the response I mentioned above why I thought that the issue was not being dealt with by the folks who pretend that they can take that right away from women.  Neither you nor any other folks on your side of the discussion has felt it important to deal with this stuff.  Yet these personal reasons are the reasons that most women will end up making the decision to have an abortion.


Either you've not been reading closely, or you are holding on to an irrational belief that pro-life people are not "for" or not involved in measures to deal with the problems that lead to abortion.  I myself have adopted from China two unwanted children both with "special needs", who could have easily been aborted, due to government insistence on less children and the sanctioning of abortion.  They have cost us much personally, and yet we think nothing of this since we count ourselves blessed to have them as our children.  But Bob, as far as the debate goes this amounts to little more than resorting to ad hominem.  Don't do it please.

The bottom line is, still, whether the fetus is a human being.  If so, then none of these problems would justify killing.  And yes the problems should be addressed, and actually are.  Thankfully there are options for women who do not want to keep their babies.    

quote:
If a mustering of mass religious and moral disapproval were actually the way of addressing the problem, I suspect the problem wouldf have been addressed by now.


I guess you're unfamiliar with the history of Apartheid in Africa or Slavery in the United States.  These human rights crises did not end in a few years, and they were rife with moral disapproval by those who opposed them.

quote:
I suggest to you that you don't want the problem dealt with, if in fact it is a problem.  That the goal of the anti-choice movement is not to alter the situation, but to make it seem to have gone away for the sake of appearances and to leave the basic problems that cause the situation untouched.


It's a poor suggestion.  I don't think its true of me, I I know it isn't true of many I know.

quote:
Women will not feel good about raising children in dangerous and loveless relationships.  They do not feel comfortable raising children in situations of abject poverty without hope for their children.  Women want to feel loved and supported in what they do in the world by their partners.  Women can feel depressed and overwhelmed given adverse social or political conditions.


As I've said before Bob, these problems are being dealt with (imperfectly of course, like all of the social problems we attempt to deal with), and should be followed-through.  But did you know that there is a phenomenally large number of abortions done for reasons other than these?  I was shocked to find out that gender selection is some-times a reason.  You've given one yourself ... "I don't want to be a mother".

If the fetus is a human being, the problems you mention, do not trump the right to life of the unborn.

If abortions are done for reasons other than the abject social problems you mention, then obviously fixing them will not eradicate abortion.  So that cannot be the only approach.  Some believe that a Government-sanctioned abortion industry in a free-market society will obfuscate scientific, ethical, and biological realities in order to proceed with business.  I don't think all women are immoral for abortion.  I think many of them have been decieved by misleading propaganda.


quote:
Women have ambitions for themselves that do not always include being mothers.


Couldn't this be said of Mothers of newborns or toddlers too?  Do you support infanticide or child abandonment based upon a Mother's "ambitions"?  How would these situations be different?    

And BTW, there is an educated choice involved in pregnancy in most abortion cases.

quote:
Even with the full majesty of the law behind it, your particular set of values was not sufficient or even close.  Killing abortion providers certainly scares people, but it says more about how the anti-choice forces have missed the chance of actually dealing with the problems by means other than the attempt to impose terror on a reasonably subject population.  This is not a pretty picture.


Well seeing you've totally misrepresented my views, and the views of most pro-life advocates, I suppose that straw-man could never be "sufficient" for you.  Continuing to bring up the extremes of murdering abortion doctors and bombing clinics (which I, along with most pro-life advocates, have already heartily condemned) is bewildering.  Whatever, it has little bearing on the whole debate, other than to suggest that it is a morally charged and controversial matter that leads some people to commit horrible acts as a response.  Are you denying that legitimate attempts at social reform (addressing ALL the problems involved including the need of protecting the unborn), can exist alongside bad examples?  That's the bad side of human nature coming through along with the good.


Stephen
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141 posted 10-14-2008 10:44 AM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

I come to the discussion, moonbeam, with the viewpoint that abortion for other than preserving the physical life of the mother is morally wrong.
moonbeam
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142 posted 10-14-2008 01:03 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Denise

And if you think it's morally wrong, I'm guessing, but you wouldn't condone ANY scenario under ANY circumstances(other than potential death of the mother) which breached that moral position?

M

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143 posted 10-14-2008 01:25 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

That's correct.
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144 posted 10-15-2008 03:11 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Denise

I understand. You are consistent I think.  What you're saying is that your moral dictum is: "you shall not kill unless another life is in jeopardy".  Which fits with a scenario where you shoot an armed maniac before he shoots your daughters.  Is that right?
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145 posted 10-15-2008 05:14 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Once upon a time, the men and women lived together, seperately.

The men went off to hunt provisions of meat and skins, in seasons did they kill.

The women gathered up the roots and leaves, according to the same seasons, and they/them managed spices such--to whit there was medicinals--certain herbs were wise or "weal"--they were known as "vanquish us."

Men did not have knowledge of the freedom that the women found.

(Men don't really think too much of what happens when they aren't around...)

But women, in their gatherings, learned about the plant of seeds. And they learned to figure out, which ones were fruit and which were weed. And whisperings began about the Dong Quai and the Wild Yam bleed...

Sisters at the well took note, who was waddling each year. They counted heads--who must be fed--and they figured out the yield that the crops that they spread out, were not guaranteed a feed--

since woman child was sacrificed

virginal for each crop's yield.

So they learned to make their teas--specified, unto each need.

They also learned to cure their meat--sometimes? Tch..permanently...?



Not that everything is so simple...but choice has always been, and always will be.

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146 posted 10-15-2008 05:44 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

crrrrrrrrrrrrrap...

I RHYMED.



Ya'll may proceed. (like ya'll need permission! Heh? )

shadding up
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147 posted 10-15-2008 11:10 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Moonbeam:
quote:
And an attachment of labels can sometimes be an attempt to pigeon-hole issues which can't be usefully pigeon-holed.


How is using the term "abortion-rights" an attempt to pigeonhole?  It generally describes the position of most who want women to have the legal right of abortion.  Why constantly object to the use of terminology (which is unavoidable when talking about most anything), since I am willing to talk about nuances and diversity within those groups as well.  Its almost like protesting the term "musician" since, after all, not all musicians are alike.

quote:
No Stephen, you are using a Ron technique, writing the question you want me to answer for me!


For the most part, I'll take that as a compliment.     Ron's a pretty bright bulb on the tree, in my opinion.  

But actually, I was asking a question in response to your statement that those who argue against abortion based on the 6th Commandment are extreme.  Perhaps you meant something different than I thought you did.  I thought you meant their position was extreme.  Perhaps, instead, you mean only that their methods are?  Anyway their position seems little different than the moral assumptions of most abortion-rights defenders I've read or spoken to ... namely that innocent human life should not be killed.  The argument is not usually that it should, but that it is really somehow less-than-human.

quote:
The fact is that, however unsavoury it might sound to say it, there are different degrees of killing.  People, for example, might broadly agree that murdering a 2 year old is rather more worthy of condemnation that shooting a murderer who is about to kill your daughter.  Your attempt to simplify this down to a kill or not kill moral position, just as the attempt to simplify it to a pro or anti position, is not helpful to finding practical compassionate solutions to the problem.


Actually I have never over-simplified the issue to the point of saying that all killing of human life is always wrong.  Capital punishment (whether you agree or not) is based upon the guilt of the executed.  Abortion to save the mother's life is based upon the fact that it would be better to save one life than none.  No abortions involve the killing of a guilty human.  And most abortions do not involve a life-saving measure for the mother.  What you are not admitting is that, in our legal system, the right to life always takes priority over the personal rights of others, excepting the extreme situations you just mentioned.


quote:
So in this case, with "extreme" meaning at one end of a spectrum, we have a guy sitting there saying: "this is a raped 14 year old girl, the foetus is only 6 weeks old, the girl is already descending into mental illness and on physically harmful drugs, but nevertheless she's still gonna have that baby because my god says that killing is wrong and I KNOW that that is a living breathing human being in there so it's gonna live whatever".


What you haven't established, is how or even if an abortion will ease the mental trauma of rape.  It won't.  It will however end the life of someone who didn't rape anyone.  And you keep bringing the religious aspect in, but as long as you already agree that innocent human life should be protected, that can remain a different discussion.  There are a significant amount of pro-life people who are not religious.  


quote:
That statement implies certainty about the status of the foetus which imo the guy cannot possibly have, and certainty about the existence of his god, and certainty about the existence of the decree and certainty about the meaning of the decree implying an absolute which imo the guy also cannot possibly have.

That position is imo at one end of a spectrum, ergo "extreme".


It's not uncertain as you say.  But since science has made the question and doubt much more acute for those who deny the humanity of the fetus ... how would legalized abortion be justified in the light of uncertainty?  

A position which says, "You can terminate the life, but were not sure that it's not human", would be far more extreme.

quote:
If it helps at all I also have a problem with a view that says a woman should be able to do whatever she likes, whenever she likes.


I do appreciate our common ground.  But I don't think you are providing any criteria for not allowing just that.  For if the fetus is not human, she should be able to whatever she likes whenever she likes.


quote:
You see Stephen, you an I differ on the meaning of "life", there are plainly circumstances when a person might feel death is preferable to biological life and those circumstances can last for many years.  I've already demonstrated to Denise that even she would be prepared to kill another human, thereby attaching value to life, there are no absolutes in this.


The existence of moral priorities does not show that "there are no absolutes".  You are describing suicidal tendencies.  I am against Euthanasia as well, since the medical community should not be hijacked to take up the cause of suicide "rights".  In the case of Denise, she (like me) already admitted that sometimes life may be taken for the protection of another.  

Again, we are talking about a majority of abortion cases which have nothing to do with such life-saving measures.


quote:
My own person opinion (supported by UK law) is that emotional response is a very important part of decision making in abortion issues and that's part of the reason why I believe development does have a bearing here.


You reiterated your view, but you didn't answer my question.  I pointed out that many mothers are not emotionally attached to their newborns, and have no desire to be mothers.  Why does protection of the newborn (from either infanticide or abandonment) overrule "emotion" in this case, and not in abortion?


quote:
Me: My question is ... In other situations, would a woman's "right" to cope with the personal pain of rape, trump the right to life for another human being?


Moonbeam: And my answer is that there is no simple answer to that, as there is no simple answer to most of your questions.



I'm not necessarily asking for a simple answer.  Our present laws protect human life overriding many rights to personal ease (which otherwise would be legitimate).  I'm asking why this is always the case (excepting for the protection of another life).  But you are proposing that it should be different with abortion.


quote:
As Bob has said, the practical position is that a woman has a choice, period.  The entity inside her is part of her body for a while and she can go off and do what she likes with her body and nobody can really stop her.


That is no argument.  Current laws do not stop murder either, nor do they take away choice.  Murderers may still go off and do what they like to someone else's body, and nobody can really stop them.  The sheer philosophical reality of having "choice" has little bearing in law or ethics, or else everything should be legal.  


Besides, there are two bodies in pregancy, not one, though one of them is dependent.  


quote:
I couldn't agree more.  Everything about this issue is "questionable", that's what makes it so difficult.


I didn't mean "questionable" in the sense that it is debatable.  For a moral relativist everything is debatable except moral relativism.  What I meant was, there is little evidence that aborting the child will improve the mental distress of a rape victim.  It's really a moot question though, unless we should be able to put other people to death because of mental distress.


quote:
The idea of a woman using abortion as a form of casual contraception is abhorrent to me, and here, at least, abortions are illegal after 24 weeks (too long imo).


Under current laws with the hopelessly wide definition of a woman's health, (to quote Francis Beckwith) women may get an abortion before "viability" for no reason, and afterward for any reason.

quote:
Not that everything is so simple...but choice has always been, and always will be.


No, Karen.  Everything is that simple.  Legality never takes away choice, though it limits it to some degree.  

I don't believe there would be as many abortions if the abortion industry were not given the freedom to promote the propaganda that the fetus is nothing more than a spare appendix.  With education and more understanding of what the expansive lens of science has shown, I think more women may consider different choices.  


Stephen
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148 posted 10-15-2008 12:31 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Stephen, Stephen, Stephen.

But it is that simple.

So you're against abortion.

*shrug*

Don't have one.
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149 posted 10-15-2008 12:35 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

So you're against slavery.

(shrug)

So don't have one.

(you shouldn't oversimplify the issue like that)
 
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