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John McCain - The Keating Five

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Huan Yi
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150 posted 10-15-2008 12:38 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi


.

http://www.newsweek.com/id/163896


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Bob K
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151 posted 10-15-2008 08:52 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



Dear Stephanos,

          In my last posting, I did not discuss the issue of right versus wrong.  In your response you returned to it repeatedly.  In this sense I believe it would be useful to understand that we are talking on two different tracks here.  Your concern is with the moral implications of abortion, whether the fetus is a human life or not and various alternatives to abortion.  It is a given to you that abortion is an evil, and that it must be stopped.

     I say to you that women who are in the process of making the decision to have or not have an abortion, while certainly considering these things, are more interested in talking about other material in making their decision.  I have seen women make this decision both ways.

     Most women in this position who come to counseling believe they have the right to make the decision.  It is an artifact of the selection process, Stephanos; if they didn't feel they could make a decision, they wouldn't come to counseling to get help in making it.  Women who feel that abortion is out of the question don't come.   Women who have already decided don't have to bring it up.

     A lot of abortions happened before they became legal.  We will never know how many.  Women had them because they felt they were necessary, and they felt that even if society didn't like what they were doing, and they didn't like what they were doing, they had the right to get one on the most basic level.  It was an existential choice, and sometimes one of the central choices of their lives.

     If you want to intervene in a choice that basic, I put it to you again, you are not going about it the correct way.  The alternatives you offer must be felt by the women in question at that moment to be more compelling that the decision to have an abortion.  Fear is not a way to make an alternative more compelling on a long term basis.  More draconian laws simply serve to fill prisons, not to change behaviors if the behaviors are as basic as this one seems to be.  Certainly this has been the result of our drug laws.

     Something different needs to be done if you want a different result.  

     The result I would like to see is that women who want to have kids are having kids happily, and women who don't want to have kids are happily not having kids, and they are free to decide to change their minds about which they want to be.  And the society is able to provide a safe and supportive enough safety net for them that they feel comfortable in whichever choice they make.

     What's the outcome you'd like to see, and what the outcome that women would like to see?

     Maybe there are elements in common we can all agree on.  At least it'd be nice to see what those elements might be.

Sincerely, Bob Kaven
Stephanos
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152 posted 10-16-2008 01:13 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Bob,

Before I respond, I would like you to explain what you mean by "basic".  In what sense is abortion a basic choice?  Could you give me an example of a law that prohibits an action that you consider to be not as basic as abortion?  I have no idea what you mean.  I'm hoping you'll explain.

Stephen

oceanvu2
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153 posted 10-16-2008 01:44 AM       View Profile for oceanvu2   Email oceanvu2   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for oceanvu2

Hi Steven  re:  

"Could you give me an example of a law that prohibits an action that you consider to be not as basic as abortion?"

Well, the city of Santa Monica prohibits one from walking a dog on the beach. That's not as basic as abortion, but its prohibited all the same.  

I don't think that's what the question means, but it's what the question asks.

Best, Jimbeaux  
moonbeam
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154 posted 10-16-2008 08:08 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

  


quote:
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.

Actually I was making a general point about labels in response to your general point about not labelling.

But since you use the example of musicians ...  "Musician" is a harmless unemotive term to describe a HUGE range of practitioners.  Hence of itself it conveys nothing specific about the person it describes other than he might play an instrument of some kind.  The terms pro, anti, etc used in the abortion debate have become extremely emotive and as soon as they are used, in some peoples minds, apparently convey something very specific about a person's beliefs, even if inaccurately (see how surprised Denise was for example after she'd labelled me pro choice when she found out what I actually believed).  I regard myself as pro life pro choice anti abortion and pro abortion.  Perhaps Stephen you might like to define what precisely a pro-choice person and pro-life person is, then we can discuss this some more if you want.  
quote:
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.

Well, as you know, that last argument is not my position.    
quote:
Actually I have never over-simplified the issue to the point of saying that all killing of human life is always wrong.  

And I never said you did.  I said nothing about "all human life"; I said "this", as in the issue of abortion.  As in the issue of a foetus.
quote:
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.

I have not been called upon to admit it yet so far as I can recall.  If you want me to now then of course I admit that in most situations apart from extreme ones, this is the case.

So what?
quote:
What you haven't established, is how or even if an abortion will ease the mental trauma of rape.  It won't.

That Stephen, is a statement I hope you make from personal experience and not relying on government statistics or media reporting.  In my personal experience it's inaccurate.  In fact grossly inaccurate.  And I have been involved in instances of far less trauma than rape where early abortion, and yes, the possible termination of a human life, was in my view the best course.  

Both you and Denise have pressed me to give detailed examples.  Apart from the fact that I haven't the time or emotional inclination to set out long case histories here, I base my refusal to do so for people who hold the views that you and Denise do on my past experiences of so doing.  Under pressure from those who believe that a fixed "moral" position which implies abortion only in the case of imminent danger to the mother's life is justified, I have sometimes tried to relate cases in sufficient depth to show them that such a position, even if theoretically comforting, is not practically tenable for a caring person to hold.  I've quickly come to realise that the discussion isn't really about justifying my views to them, but much more about them convincing themselves that their "one size fits all" approach can stand the test of actual practical examples.  Sorry to go back to religion, but the analogy that immediately springs to mind is the mindset of the person who, from a secret position of absolute conviction in his own faith, magnanimously undertakes to "investigate" the claims of other religions.  The result is generally not an objective analysis from a clean starting point, but simply a critique of gap between the "right" view and the "other" view.

The fact is Stephen I am secure in my own moral position which is that it is wrong to kill.  But there are instances where the wrongness of killing can be mitigated by other moral imperatives.  We just differ on the extent of those other imperatives.  
quote:
    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.


Did you mean it IS uncertain?

I am no longer involved first hand with the CAB, and out of date with the latest science, but as I said before it probably wouldn't make me change my views much.  We're going to have to disagree on what is extreme.

We are starting to go round in circles here Stephen.  I have previously stated, and I will state again, that you and I have a different approach to the use of the word "life" in this issue (another aspect of the matter which makes simplistic labels unhelpful btw).  You are simply employing the medical and biological meaning of the word (whatever that is!  because there is plenty of disagreement even in those circles) whereas I take the view that "to live" or  "life" consists of more than simply breath, heart-beats and brain.  

If you think that those things are the be-all and end-all, and moreover you are unprepared to attach any significance to the developmental stages of human life in terms of assessing the value of that life against the value of another life (in the sense that I mean life), then I suspect we've reached the limit of the common ground we have and accordingly the end of this debate.
quote:
    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.

You are totally fixated with the importance of whether the foetus is human or not.  

Watch my lips for the umpteenth time: "In my opinion that is not the central issue here".

And: "I accept that the foetus may be human, and accordingly she should not be "allowed" (in a legal sense) to do whatever, whenever"
quote:
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?

Sorry I didn't notice that question before.  As I've hinted, or maybe even said explicitly, I think developmental stages are an important part of the mix of considerations in abortion matters.  I've already said that I believe current UK law extends too much latitude.  I think you can work out from that what my answer is.
quote:
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.

I've really answered this above, it has to do with my views on the importance of the stage of development of the foetus, the meaning of "life" and the exceptional potential for harm to the mother.
quote:
    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.  


I wasn't using it as an argument actually Stephen, I was simply pointing out the practical position (obviously indicating one of the problems with illegality) which is that a woman can physically do as she wishes, and imo it is therefore better to try and work "with" her rather than against "her".  

I didn't say there was one body.  I said "the entity is part of her body", in the sense of attached to, inside.  I simply repeat, she can do what she wants with her body, and the foetus has to "follow".
quote:
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.

to moral relativism.

I know what you meant, sorry to be flip, but again, I've stated my position above.
serenity blaze
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155 posted 10-16-2008 03:13 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Stephan--my brother:

Here's something a bit more complex for you.

A woman discovers to her joy, she is pregnant. After some puzzling symptoms, test results show that she is carrying a fetus that is missing something. One simple, but very complex thing: a chromosome.

And thus commences the nervous breakdown, and time is indeed wasted as she confronts this moral dilemma. She wasn't financially prepared to have a healthy child. (Very few are.) She is obviously incapable of coping emotionally with a child that is mentally handicapped, and as a result, she begins to physically deteriorate--the placenta is already seperating, producing blood on the brain of the fetus.

There is a possibility that the baby might live--but she is no longer emotionally capable, and in possible physical danger if she chooses (CHOOSES, mind you) to carry this pregnancy to term.

She could be risking her life to produce a baby with not much chance of survival, and a questionable quality of life for her entire family if the boy survives.

What about her other children?

Don't they need a mother too? Even if she proceeds to have the abortion, I promise you she's going to need some help returning to her role as a mother.

This all began with her emotional stability as the issue, but now her physical life is in jeopardy as well.

Now I ask you for solutions here.

Is this an extreme case?

Indeed it is.

Is it made up to prove my point?

I wish it were.

However noble the intent of the pro-life folk, they actually have no way of knowing the particulars of each woman's life and circumstance before they deny her choice.

You have already conceded that it is an emotional issue--which is why it is not the business of anyone but the patient.

It's been said loudly that pro-choice (not pro-DEATH, btw) advocates are playing God.

I contend that pro-life folk are doing the same. And in a country with seperation of church and state, it's a non-issue.

I talked of herbs, perhaps too playfully for the seriousness of the subject, but it's a valid point.

When we all let the slogan of "better living through chemicals" slide past our ears and into our collective psyche, I doubt we gave much thought that a more efficient death via chemicals might also be considered.

I maintain my right for privacy.

And I pray my friend's right will be maintained as well.

We've discussed this issue before, and I also pray I have the fortitude to never engage in such a nonversation again.
Bob K
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156 posted 10-16-2008 05:04 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



Dear Stephanos,

          Jim was correct when he responded to the actual question you asked.  I will sidestep the urge to look beyond the actual mistake and at the psychological meaning of the mistake (other than this mention of it) and try to give you the answer to the question I think you're asking.

     Basic questions come in many sizes and shapes.  The type I am talking about here are related to the sense of their origin being literally felt (in the sense of proprioception, not affect) as originating within the boundaries of the physical body, and sending physiological signals about the nature and well-being of that body.  Questions of this type tend to get processed first by the brain, and by levels of brain processing closer to the brain stem.  The cortex, which is where much of the debate we are talking about takes place, is a much more recent addition and has much less influence on decision making for the most part.

     Basic in this sense also is something I associate with Maslow's heirarchy of needs.  Basic physiological needs such as breathing, temperature regulation and heartbeat regulation generally take precidence over altruistic wishes and desires—also legitimate needs, but needs that are simpler to fulfill once the kids are fed.

     The needs that women making the decisions about abortion are frequently faced with are in this sense much more basic since many of them have to do with internal signals and their interpretation.  

     This is an intellectual explanation for something that is not an intellectual thing.  To get a better answer, you'd have to actually ask women who've made the decision and made their peace with it, without being judgemental yourself, and then trying to understand what they have to say.  This may be asking too much.

     Anyway, I mean in this case responding to internal and physiological signals of a proprioceptive and not afective nature and interpreting them from a position of more rather than less need in life, and making decisions that come from those factors as a baseline.  This is not to say that women can't make the same decision to have an abortion from a different position.   But you wanted clarification about basics, and in a grossly simplifed fashion, I've tried to offer it to you.  

     My sense is that this is probably pretty much what you thought it would be, though.  Is it?

Sincerely, Bob Kaven

Stephanos
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157 posted 10-16-2008 11:05 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:
Perhaps Stephen you might like to define what precisely a pro-choice person and pro-life person is, then we can discuss this some more if you want.


In simplest terms, "pro-choice" advocates are for women to have a legal right to abort their unborn children, while "pro-life" advocates are against this legal right, for the protection of the unborn.

quote:
The terms pro, anti, etc used in the abortion debate have become extremely emotive and as soon as they are used, in some peoples minds, apparently convey something very specific about a person's beliefs, even if inaccurately (see how surprised Denise was for example after she'd labelled me pro choice when she found out what I actually believed)


Those terms are very emotive because the whole issue is.  You still cannot escape the terminology.  Perhaps I could clarify your position for myself by asking where you think the law should be drawn?  Which abortions should be allowed and which should not?

quote:
Me: 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.


Moonbeam: Well, as you know, that last argument is not my position.


That's why I've been trying to demonstrate that your position is much more "extreme" than those who protest abortion by making mention of the Decalogue.  You seem to believe the fetus to be a human being, and still opt for the rights of others to terminate its life.  

quote:
Me: 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.


Moonbeam: I have not been called upon to admit it yet so far as I can recall.  If you want me to now then of course I admit that in most situations apart from extreme ones, this is the case.

So what?


So what?  The "extreme cases" you are referring to invariably involve the taking of a physical life only in protection of another from death.  Most abortions do not involve this.  There is obviously a difference.  I am asking you to explain it and or justify it.

quote:
I've quickly come to realise that the discussion isn't really about justifying my views to them, but much more about them convincing themselves that their "one size fits all" approach can stand the test of actual practical examples.


And I've come to realize that a "one size fits all" position is inevitable as well, if you do not accept that the protection of an innocent human life takes precedence over non-life-threatening circumstances for someone else.  For a woman's "health" and well-being has been stretched to defy all definition, essentially allowing abortion for any reason.  Again, in view that the fetus is a human being, where do you think the legal line should be drawn?


quote:
The fact is Stephen I am secure in my own moral position which is that it is wrong to kill.  But there are instances where the wrongness of killing can be mitigated by other moral imperatives.  We just differ on the extent of those other imperatives.


I'm asking you to support the priority of your moral imperitives.  Where, outside abortion, does a non-life-threatening situation take precedence over the life of another human being?  If your moral principle holds, it should be true elsewhere, and in other examples, don't you think?

quote:
You are simply employing the medical and biological meaning of the word (whatever that is!  because there is plenty of disagreement even in those circles)


Plenty of disagreement?  Could you cite some of it?

"I think we can now also say that the question of the beginning of life- when life begins- is no longer a question for theological or philosophical dispute.  It is an established scientific fact.  Theologians and Philosophers may go on to debate the meaning of life or purpose of life, but it is an established fact that all life, including human life begins at conception.  I have never ever seen in my own scientific reading, long before I became concerned with issues of life of this nature, that anyone has ever argued that life did not begin at the moment of conception and that it was a human conception if it resulted from the fertilization of the human egg by a human sperm.  As far as I know, these have never been argued against. (Dr. Hymie Gordon, professor of medical genetics and physician at the Mayo Clinic)


quote:
... I take the view that "to live" or  "life" consists of more than simply breath, heart-beats and brain.


Okay, let's not be vague.  Can you give me an example of intact breath, heart and brain that is not "life", and explain why?

quote:
f you think that those things are the be-all and end-all, and moreover you are unprepared to attach any significance to the developmental stages of human life in terms of assessing the value of that life against the value of another life (in the sense that I mean life), then I suspect we've reached the limit of the common ground we have and accordingly the end of this debate.


Moonbeam, I'm fine to stop or continue at your wishes.  However I would remind you that it is only in utero that you are prepared to allow development to determine the value of a human life.  Why doesn't it apply post-birth in the same manner?  A newborn is certainly less developed than an eight year old, and he less than a twenty year old.  Infanticide does not disturb you any less than adult murder does it?  Your idea that development determines value is not consistent.

quote:
I accept that the foetus may be human, and accordingly she should not be "allowed" (in a legal sense) to do whatever, whenever


Sorry to repeat myself, but where should the legal lines be drawn then and why?

quote:
Me: 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?

MB: As I've hinted, or maybe even said explicitly, I think developmental stages are an important part of the mix of considerations in abortion matters.  I've already said that I believe current UK law extends too much latitude.  I think you can work out from that what my answer is.


Actually I cannot, from what you said, tell what your answer is.  But I will respond by pointing out that the "development determines human value" argument could apply just as well to the newborn.  After all, newborns are the least developed of born human beings.  So, how can that be your answer?


quote:
I wasn't using it as an argument actually Stephen, I was simply pointing out the practical position (obviously indicating one of the problems with illegality) which is that a woman can physically do as she wishes, and imo it is therefore better to try and work "with" her rather than against "her".


I don't believe anti-abortion laws would be, in any practical sense or otherwise, against women ... anymore than DUI laws are against drivers (or drinkers for that matter).  

I do believe however, along with education about the nature of the fetus and social helps, that far less women would resort to abortion.  I am not under the illusion that anti-abortion laws would eliminate it altogether.  

quote:
I simply repeat, she can do what she wants with her body, and the foetus has to "follow".


Come on Moonbeam ... You make it sound as if it were something done to one's own body that inadvertently affects the fetus.  It is primarily and consciously something done to the fetus ... and the mother doesn't follow.

  
Stephen

[This message has been edited by Stephanos (10-16-2008 11:48 PM).]

Stephanos
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158 posted 10-16-2008 11:35 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Karen:  
quote:
Is this an extreme case?

Indeed it is.

Is it made up to prove my point?

I wish it were.

However noble the intent of the pro-life folk, they actually have no way of knowing the particulars of each woman's life and circumstance before they deny her choice.


Karen, I have already conceded that extreme situations are different.  Where the mother's life is truly in jeopardy beyond the normal risks of pregnancy, abortion may become a necessary though unfortunate option.  Most pro-life advocates would concede such.  And those who wouldn't probably don't understand the implications.  Just as a physician would have to document good evidence for a lobectomy on a patient in order to legally do the procedure, physicians could carry out an abortion if there is ample medical weight to say that the mother is in jeopardy.  

I have a harder time accepting abortion based upon something wrong with the fetus, since it so often turns out different.  Many disabled people seem able to reach a degree of happiness that the "normal" can't quite attain.  And more often people become sure that they would not trade (for the world) disabled children they chose to keep.  There's a woman I work with who fits this description regarding her daughter, who was counseled to abort.

These are harrowing situations, Karen.  I don't intend to downplay the difficulty of them.  I do think though, in many cases, there may be more help than initially thought of during the shock of discovery.

    
quote:
You have already conceded that it is an emotional issue--which is why it is not the business of anyone but the patient.


I think you would agree that not all abortion cases involve a "patient" except in the sheer technical sense of someone who signs up for a certain procedure.  Abortion as birth-control ... Abortion as gender selection ... Abortion as a reversion back into adolescence ... These probably could be described in much better terms than medical problems.

That's why I've always protested a bit when you've said that.  Though I want you to understand that I believe there are those who can truly be called patients.


And Karen?

Thanks for being civil and kind with me.

I know this is a thorny subject.  The very fact that we can see things differently, discuss it fully, and still respect each other shows that we've got something right.    


Bob, ol' pal.

I'll respond to you later.

It's "night night" time.  <---guess you can tell I've been 'round kids too long.


Stephen
    
serenity blaze
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159 posted 10-17-2008 12:48 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

I once had a pesky splinter removed, Stephan.

Trivial? YES.

But I think my doctor would agree I was his patient.

If not--I'd like my money back.

And lawsy, if someone thanks me for being civil...? *laughing*

I must have a certain reputation!

hmmm.

serenity blaze
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160 posted 10-17-2008 12:56 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

OH.

And don't mistake my civility for agreement.

<--we're seein' this guy a lot lately.

The only way you could come to a decision regarding whether or not someone's personal situation fits your criteria of morality is to invade their right to medical privacy.

You know better, too. Tsk...

(Shrug and smile..I just thought that guy should exercize his finger some more...)

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161 posted 10-17-2008 01:08 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Karen, I'll jump in on this one because i can speak from experience....in a way.

I did not have the option, that is true, although I had a child that was born with spina bifida. I was told the child would need a shunt in the brain, constant operations, and would probably not live past the age of six. I was not in a position where I could afford anything like that. What to do?

Through a nurse at the hospital I found a group of people who are saints, to say the least. They take in children with just about any birth defect you can imagine, raise them and treat them as their own children because they feel they are doing God's work. A family in Ohio took in my daughter and raised her. She went through grade school, high school and is now 25 years old. One may say she has a limited life....she doesn't. She has no complaints and is happy every day to be alive. She can be found here.. [URL=http://piptalk.com/main/forumdisplay.cgi?action=displayarchive&number=69&topic=002798]http://piptalk.com/main/forumdisplay.cgi?action=displayarchive&number=69&topic=002798[/UR L]

IF I had had an option, what would I have done? I don't know. If her defect could have been discovered before birth and the option of abortion presented to me, I can't honestly say what I would have done. Since it wasn't, though, I discovered all these other options I hadn't been aware of and my daughter is alive and well and happy.

I can't but help think there is a message here  somewhere.......
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162 posted 10-17-2008 07:56 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Karen,

You know I didn't mistake civility for agreement.  But I don't mind the finger as long as its the index one.        

As I've mentioned before, to dream that law and medicine don't (or shouldn't) intersect is to misunderstand.  No matter how much I might want it (I don't really), I couldn't get a physician to kill me pharmacologically.  Why?  Because it is outside the scope of medicine.  Neither could a doctor legally do a surgery on me without an MD license, no matter how I agreed to the procedure.  I mention these examples to say that medicine is anything but a totally private enterprise.  Surely you know its regulated in various degrees.  Where another human life is involved, some degree of regulation is warranted.

Whether or not we agree about regulating abortion aside ... I never said you weren't the "patient".  What I'm trying to say is that neither the doctor nor patient has complete autonomy.  If you don't think there all already many people "reviewing" your charts, think again.  Some of it may be bad or intrusive, but some of it is good and necessary for the critique of medical practice which is not in a vacuum.  

Stephen
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163 posted 10-18-2008 07:25 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Stephen

This discussion is getting kind of strung out, and there are a lot of points that could probably be knocked on the head by trying to summarize our differences.  As far as I can see you're coming from a position akin to that of a moral absolutist (whether religion based or not), but then watering that down with certain "exceptions".  

Thus, you believe it is morally wrong to kill?  Is that another living being?  Or do you distinguish between humans and animals?  It's ok to kill a rare tiger?  Ok to kill a man eating rare tiger?  Ok to kill a house fly?  Ok to kill a honeybee, a rabid dog, a cat, your daughter's pet cat?  A neanderthal?  A cloned half ape half human?  A pheasant for the pot?  A pheasant for pleasure?  It's ok, to kill a cat but not a baby?

You believe it's morally wrong to kill?  But it's ok to kill a foetus if the mother's life is threatened?  Is it ok to kill a newborn in the same circumstances?  A 2 year old?

You believe it's morally wrong to kill?   But it's ok to kill a murderer who has been tried and sentenced?

You believe it's morally wrong to kill?  But it's ok for a General to send a cruise missile into Baghdad and kill a hundred babies?  It's ok to shoot a man on a subway if you think he's a terrorist?

The fact is, Stephen, you are trying to pin me down to a position which I won't be pinned to.  Call me a relativist if you want to, but I think I'd rather be that than be accused of having a theoretical absolute view which in practice was unsustainable.

You want me to reconcile the apparent importance I attach to development in the womb but not out of it.  You want me to state exactly where I think the law should stand, and which abortions should be allowed and which not.  You want me to justify why I think that in some circumstances it is morally acceptable to terminate a pregnancy even if the mother's physical life is not threatened.  

In short you want me to set out my fixed moral position which should apply, as you effectively put it, "in all circumstances".  

I can't do that, I've never pretended I can, and moreover I think an attempt to do so is potentially dishonest and of itself immoral.

Apart from the obvious physical circumstances that makes a pregnancy different from the other scenarios you paint, there are other mental ones too.  Even if I admit that physically the foetus may be human at the point of conception, it is disingenuous not to acknowledge the different psychological impacts of an unseen zygote as opposed to a visible warm breathing newborn.  Stephen I really can't be bothered, and I haven't got the emotional energy, to sit here and type out all the complex factors that distinguish a potential abortion scenario from potential infanticide.  If you really can't step beyond the purely medical and physical parameters, then, as I said before, there isn't much more to say.

You asked me about "life", and how breath, heart and brain cannot be life.  My sister-in-law's sister had a traumatic experience when she was 11 years old.  She spent 20 years on diazepam (the rest I won't relate) she then jumped from a multi storey car park.  She didn't "live" for those 20 years.  People who are in favour of making all abortion illegal often ask people like me what gives us the "right" to "allow" a woman to kill the foetus.  Sometimes I feel like shooting back, and what gives you the right to decide that a woman will suffer that kind of hell?  But then that would be to descend to their level of unhelpful and destructive simplicity.

As for the law, I've said up above to Ron that abortion should be legal in some circumstances.  I'd put a time limit less that 24 weeks but more than 8.  I'd probably ban multiple abortions (with exceptions).  Ideally compulsory counselling before the choice was made with reference to a tribunal with the power to refuse.  The underlying principle would be to discourage abortion wherever possible, and to make it not a matter of course that one would be allowed.  In some situations such as rape, coercion, extreme parental pressure, possibly in forced or arranged marriages, no obstacles would be put in the way of a decision to abort.

The bottom line here Stephen is that we are not far apart - but you don't like the way I am "grounding" my ideas on what appears to you to be wavering morals.  You don't appear to accept that abortion IS a special case and DOES warrant a different approach.

Most of your questions from your previous post are now answered  I hope, but I'll just run through them quickly.  Apologies for the lack of quotes; out of time here (my comment as >>>)

Stephen (S) "In simplest terms, "pro-choice" advocates are for women to have a legal right to abort their unborn children, while "pro-life" advocates are against this legal right, for the protection of the unborn."

>>> "In simplest terms" - precisely!  Too simple.

S: "Those terms are very emotive because the whole issue is.  You still cannot escape the terminology.  Perhaps I could clarify your position for myself by asking where you think the law should be drawn?  Which abortions should be allowed and which should not?"

>>>see above.

S: That's why I've been trying to demonstrate that your position is much more "extreme" than those who protest abortion by making mention of the Decalogue.  You seem to believe the fetus to be a human being, and still opt for the rights of others to terminate its life.  

>>>Exactly so.  See above.

S: "For a woman's "health" and well-being has been stretched to defy all definition, essentially allowing abortion for any reason."

>>>That in my view is wrong, as I've said.

S: "I'm asking you to support the priority of your moral imperitives.  Where, outside abortion, does a non-life-threatening situation take precedence over the life of another human being?"  

>>>I can't easily support the priority of my moral imperatives without giving detailed examples, it's an evidential thing, which I'm not sure I want to elaborate on here.  Answer all my questions at the beginning of this post and I may discuss this further if you want.

S: "If your moral principle holds, it should be true elsewhere, and in other examples, don't you think?"

>>>No.  Already explained above.

S: "Plenty of disagreement?  Could you cite some of it?

"I think we can now also say that the question of the beginning of life- when life begins- is no longer a question for theological or philosophical dispute.  It is an established scientific fact.  Theologians and Philosophers may go on to debate the meaning of life or purpose of life, but it is an established fact that all life, including human life begins at conception.  I have never ever seen in my own scientific reading, long before I became concerned with issues of life of this nature, that anyone has ever argued that life did not begin at the moment of conception and that it was a human conception if it resulted from the fertilization of the human egg by a human sperm.  As far as I know, these have never been argued against. (Dr. Hymie Gordon, professor of medical genetics and physician at the Mayo Clinic)"

>>>Happy to bow to your up-to-date knowledge Stephen, it's been 10 year since I listened to the arguments in hospital common rooms.  But the point was an irrelevant aside.  I shouldn't have confused the issue.

S: "Okay, let's not be vague.  Can you give me an example of intact breath, heart and brain that is not "life", and explain why?"

>>>see above.

S: "Moonbeam, I'm fine to stop or continue at your wishes.  However I would remind you that it is only in utero that you are prepared to allow development to determine the value of a human life.  Why doesn't it apply post-birth in the same manner?  A newborn is certainly less developed than an eight year old, and he less than a twenty year old.  Infanticide does not disturb you any less than adult murder does it?  Your idea that development determines value is not consistent."

>>>Development is only one element of a complex mix.  See above.

S: "I do believe however, along with education about the nature of the fetus and social helps, that far less women would resort to abortion."

>>>I agree!!  

M: "quote:I simply repeat, she can do what she wants with her body, and the foetus has to "follow"."

S: "Come on Moonbeam ... You make it sound as if it were something done to one's own body that inadvertently affects the fetus.  It is primarily and consciously something done to the fetus ... and the mother doesn't follow."

>>>Misunderstanding Stephen.  I meant as in kill herself, or take herself off to a place where abortions would be performed that are illegal where she is, or harm herself in other ways which would also harm the foetus.  I was simply pointing out the obvious practical position, that the foetus is at the mercy of the mother, with the possible implication that collaboration might be better than confrontation.  
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164 posted 10-20-2008 02:28 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


Dear Stephanos,

          You were going to get back to me?

Yours, Bob Kaven
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The Doctor told my mom to abort me, because she was to old, She had a "female disease," and her heart was bad.

If my mom wasn't pro-choice I or my brother wouldn't exist.  

I personally believe abortion is used by politicians as a quick fix to wage slavery. I think that instead of addressing that there is poverty, which poeple get stuck in a certain political party used it, as a way to commit class-est genocide legally.

Instead of focassing of getting out of poverty it was how can we get them to stop complaining. I like to call this "Tudor paternalism"  

But that is my opinion

-Juju

-"So you found a girl
Who thinks really deep thougts
What's so amazing about really deep thoughts " Silent all these Years, Tori Amos

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166 posted 10-21-2008 04:24 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



Dear Juju,

          Indeed, your mother was pro-choice.  

     While it is possible that the Doctor told your mother to have an abortion, I suspect that what she actually said was something a bit different.  Doctors are trained not to make statements like that.  They are sometimes actionable  as a matter of legality (I believe); and they are bad medicine, I believe, as a matter of practice.  Doctors are trained to give the patient the information and let them know what the options are.

     Some doctors will let a patient know what their opinion is, sometimes without waiting to be asked.  I think they should wait.

     If your mother was "old" and ill with a "woman's problem" and she had a bad heart, objectively speaking abortion was one of the options she should have considered.  A fair number of women tend to die from that combination of risk factors.  Charlotte Bronte, author of [iJane Eyere], was among them; she married at 39 and died a year later in childbirth.

     The fact that she decided not to have an abortion for either you or your brother is something that pro-choice people should support.  Pro-choice, after all, doesn't mean only the choice to have an abortion, but also the choice not to as well.  Both should be available.  Neither should be forced.  I for one am glad your mother made the decision she did.  I wonder what might have happened if Charlotte Bronte had felt she might make that decision as well.  Or maybe she did.

     It was good to hear your emotional story.

Sincerely, Bob Kaven
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167 posted 10-25-2008 11:43 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Bob,

Sorry,

alot has been happening round here.

Yes, I will still get back with you on this.  Within a few days.


Don't throw this thread on the heap just yet.

Grinch
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168 posted 10-26-2008 06:59 AM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

quote:
If my mom wasn't pro-choice I or my brother wouldn't exist.


Turn that on it’s head Juju - if Alois and Lara and Kathleen Maddox were pro-choice and decided to have an abortion would the world be a better place?

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169 posted 10-26-2008 12:13 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Or Hitler's mother or Idi Amin's mother, or Caligula's mother.....where does that argument end? We have had a variety of people throughout history in which the world would have been better off if they had not been born. If Hitler's mother had had the knowledge that her son would be responsible for killing millions of people and starting a world war, perhaps she would have opted for abortion, if given the choice.

But that's the rub. We don't know beforehand, do we? Whether that child coming out might be a sweet Juju or a Milosovic has little to do with birth. It has all to do with what happens afterward. I suggest the politicians that fight over right to life be more concerned with poverty, lack of education and the myriad of other things that influence those children growing up.

Other that or we'd have to just kill the kids at birth so as not to take chances, which would also solve the over-population problem, the world hunger problem and the "running out of natural resources" problems that face the world....not to mention that the golf course wouldn't be as crowded when I tee off
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quote:
But that's the rub. We don't know beforehand, do we?


That was my point Mike - you can’t point to Juju and say “look what we would have lost” without pointing at Hitler and lamenting what we’d have gained.

The argument is equally invalid - it’s what you’d call a straw man , it looks like a good representation of a valid argument but doesn’t face up to close scrutiny.

quote:
Other that or we'd have to just kill the kids at birth so as not to take chances, which would also solve the over-population problem, the world hunger problem and the "running out of natural resources" problems that face the world


You’re ahead of your time Mike - That isn’t suggested as a solution until July 2047 although there are rumours that the Chinese introduced it two years earlier in breach of the Genetic Behavioural Profiling ban.

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171 posted 10-26-2008 01:55 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


Whoops - I apparently just instigated the butterfly effect.

My bad.

Stephanos
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172 posted 10-28-2008 12:39 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Bob:
quote:
If you want to intervene in a choice that basic, I put it to you again, you are not going about it the correct way.  The alternatives you offer must be felt by the women in question at that moment to be more compelling that the decision to have an abortion.  Fear is not a way to make an alternative more compelling on a long term basis.  More draconian laws simply serve to fill prisons, not to change behaviors if the behaviors are as basic as this one seems to be.  Certainly this has been the result of our drug laws.

     Something different needs to be done if you want a different result.

Bob, I honestly feel (as you probably do too) that I am uselessly repeating myself here.  But just in case, I'll attempt a fuller explanation of why I think you are misinterpreting me.


I am not advocating anti-abortion laws soley to change mothers' minds.  However I do think if abortion were not sanctioned by the state, and not allowed to be a private consumer service, that we would be more likely to share accurate information regarding the human nature of the unborn.  And that result would change many mothers' minds, though certainly not all.  


The primary purpose of anti-abortion laws is the protection of the unborn.  If abortion is not state sanctioned as it now is, then there will be less abortions.  When you say that prior to abortion becoming legal, they were done of an unspecified number ... you are right.  Statistics cannot say much about what was unmonitored.  Intuitively, however, there will be less abortions when it is not dressed in the consumer/clinical guise of benevolent medical service, and rhetoric about it being little different than an appendectomy.  That much is common sense.


There is no reason that social solutions about difficult situations for mothers cannot be talked about concurrently with efforts to make abortion illegal.  The reason you are against this legislative talk, is really not because you deem it ineffective to the pro-life cause, but because you think women should have the right to abort.  


This is why you only mention things like drug laws and not things like infanticide laws.  Because when it all comes down, whether you think infanticide laws can adequately prevent so "basic" a choice as murdering an infant, you are still firmly for those laws.  The question of humanity is still central to our discussion, because if you could give me any reasons to think that a fetus is not a human being, I would not dream of denying abortion as a right.  And if you deem it as a human being, you shouldn't dream that it is a right at all.


In conclusion, you seem to place social solutions and laws to protect the unborn in an "either/or" juxtaposition.  But I believe it is due to either your lack of belief in the humanity of the fetus, or your denial that the right to live of one human being should trump, to some degree, the right of choice for another.  The evidence for my estimation of your position, is that you would never even peep of making infanticide legal, in order to improve social programs to help those desperate enough to resort to such an act.  The fact is, legal protection of one group, and therapy of another are not antithetical.  


respectfully,


Stephen
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173 posted 10-30-2008 01:32 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Moonbeam,

I am sorry it has taken me so long to respond.  Hopefully you are still reading this thread whenever it pops back up to the surface.  

quote:
As far as I can see you're coming from a position akin to that of a moral absolutist (whether religion based or not), but then watering that down with certain "exceptions".


No, I'm not "watering it down" with exceptions.  All moral positions involve prioritizing and qualification.  It is a real moral principle not to limit someone's choices arbitrarily.  But that principle falls beneath a more important principle of protecting an innocent human life.  I have merely been pointing out your inconsistency in desiring laws to protect you from someone's free "choice" of killing you to make life easier on themselves, while not advocating laws to protect the lives of unborn human beings.  There is no difference.  You yourself prioritize in the exact same way ... only making exception with abortion apparantly.


Though it is a worthwhile question for you whether morals of any kind (beyond opinion or preference) make sense apart from a religious framework, the religious question is another thread entirely, since common moral insight exists for the religious and non-religious alike.


quote:
Thus, you believe it is morally wrong to kill?  Is that another living being?  Or do you distinguish between humans and animals?  It's ok to kill a rare tiger?  Ok to kill a man eating rare tiger?  Ok to kill a house fly?  Ok to kill a honeybee, a rabid dog, a cat, your daughter's pet cat?  A neanderthal?  A cloned half ape half human?  A pheasant for the pot?  A pheasant for pleasure?  It's ok, to kill a cat but not a baby?


We have been given moral sanction through the scriptures, and through conscience to kill animals for food.  Do you eat meat?  If so, then you agree in practice.  Even if not, eating meat is a majority practice ... infanticide is not.  Why is that?  Are you suggesting (really) that there is no difference between eating Chik-fil-a, and killing a two year old human being?  


It seems to me that by your torrent of non-human examples you are obscuring moral practices and choices (including those of your own) rather than clarifying them in any way.  If you have an argument at all, it is one that inadvertently sanctions all.

quote:
You believe it's morally wrong to kill?  But it's ok to kill a foetus if the mother's life is threatened?  Is it ok to kill a newborn in the same circumstances?  A 2 year old?


How could killing a newborn save a mother's life??  or a two year old?  The difference (which you aren't acknowledging) is that with a pregnant mother, the fetus can sometimes be the certain death of both mother and child.  And obviously, it is better to save one life than none.  


quote:
You believe it's morally wrong to kill?   But it's ok to kill a murderer who has been tried and sentenced?


The difference you are not admitting to is the concept of just punishment.  And whether you agree with it or not, the majority of humanity has felt it to be sometimes mitigating of the moral principle to preserve an individual's life.  Still there is a world of difference between a serial killer, and an unborn infant guilty of no wrong.

And even if you are against the killing of a guilty human being (allow me use an a fortiori argument) how much more wrong must it be to kill an innocent human being?

quote:
You believe it's morally wrong to kill?  But it's ok for a General to send a cruise missile into Baghdad and kill a hundred babies?


When did I ever say it was okay to do that?  Have we ever discussed my views of various war scenarios, or even of war in general?  I would certainly never justify war carte blanche.


quote:
It's ok to shoot a man on a subway if you think he's a terrorist?


Not sure about that.  Though it might be okay for the authorities to do so if they know he is.  You are making two mistakes with these kinds of comparisons.  1)  In most cases abortion is not so morally ambiguous as the intentionally ambiguous cases you mention  and 2)  The unborn child has no guilt, malice, or danger to the lives of others.

quote:
The fact is, Stephen, you are trying to pin me down to a position which I won't be pinned to.  Call me a relativist if you want to, but I think I'd rather be that than be accused of having a theoretical absolute view which in practice was unsustainable.


I've already admitted ambiguity exists wherever morality meets real-life-decisions.  But your examples have been so radically different from anything like actual abortions, that I'm not sure you can (by using such examples) make an argument that moral absolutism is "unsustainable".

quote:
You want me to reconcile the apparent importance I attach to development in the womb but not out of it.  You want me to state exactly where I think the law should stand, and which abortions should be allowed and which not.  You want me to justify why I think that in some circumstances it is morally acceptable to terminate a pregnancy even if the mother's physical life is not threatened.  

In short you want me to set out my fixed moral position which should apply, as you effectively put it, "in all circumstances".  

I can't do that, I've never pretended I can, and moreover I think an attempt to do so is potentially dishonest and of itself immoral.


The reason I have asked you that, is because you (seeming to accept the humanity of the unborn) find certain cases of abortion as abhorrent (to use your own words).  Either you permit what is abhorrent because of its violation of human rights, or you draw some lines somewhere.  To refuse to draw a smaller circle (in this case) is to certainly draw a larger one.  I don't mind you drawing the lines a different place, as much as criticizing someone for drawing them at all ... when in such a case, not to decide to limit someone, is unavoidably to decide to limit someone else even more (and in this case the most severe kind of limitation).  

I also think it would be immoral to have a fixed position for "all circumstances".


quote:
Even if I admit that physically the foetus may be human at the point of conception, it is disingenuous not to acknowledge the different psychological impacts of an unseen zygote as opposed to a visible warm breathing newborn.


Alright, Let's talk about the different psychological impacts ... and how you feel that should apply to the abortion question.  Let me hear your thoughts, and I will respond.

quote:
Stephen I really can't be bothered, and I haven't got the emotional energy, to sit here and type out all the complex factors that distinguish a potential abortion scenario from potential infanticide.  If you really can't step beyond the purely medical and physical parameters, then, as I said before, there isn't much more to say.


I have not been unwilling to discuss the psychology of the mother, if that's what you mean.  I'm only insisting that the emotional distress of a mother does not warrant the taking of a human life.  This is always true, but especially so if there are alternatives to address that emotional distress.  

quote:
You asked me about "life", and how breath, heart and brain cannot be life.  My sister-in-law's sister had a traumatic experience when she was 11 years old.  She spent 20 years on diazepam (the rest I won't relate) she then jumped from a multi storey car park.  She didn't "live" for those 20 years.


What does this have to do with abortion?  Should she have been "put out of her misery" by someone's choice other than her own?  Her life was, and should have been, protected by law from others even through her sad years of suffering.  Not all in life have a happy one ... but I'm more than certain that all would have wanted the opportunity to try.  I'm not praising suicide here ... but the key point here is that it was her own will (not another's) which determined her end.  

I want you to know I don't speak flippantly here on the matter of such real and personal tragedy.  But since you brought it up, I thought I should respond.  I am very sorry to hear of such suffering for you and your family.  


quote:
People who are in favour of making all abortion illegal often ask people like me what gives us the "right" to "allow" a woman to kill the foetus.  Sometimes I feel like shooting back, and what gives you the right to decide that a woman will suffer that kind of hell?  But then that would be to descend to their level of unhelpful and destructive simplicity.


It seems you have been asking just that.  What is the middle position then which you have not yet described?

  
quote:
I'd put a time limit less that 24 weeks but more than 8


Okay, maybe you have begun to describe it.

Why less than 24 but more than 8, if you don't mind my asking?

quote:
I'd probably ban multiple abortions (with exceptions).


What legal ground would there be to deny a second or third abortion?

quote:
Ideally compulsory counselling before the choice was made with reference to a tribunal with the power to refuse.


I'm assuming this tribunal would be obligated to refuse for anything outside the exceptions you give below?  Or would the "tribunal" be sovereign in their decision?  Remember that even judges only make rulings based upon law.  What would be the guiding factor of the tribunal?

quote:
The underlying principle would be to discourage abortion wherever possible, and to make it not a matter of course that one would be allowed.  In some situations such as rape, coercion, extreme parental pressure, possibly in forced or arranged marriages, no obstacles would be put in the way of a decision to abort.


The problem is, it will not be possible if abortions are freely allowed for "coerced" marriages, and not allowed for young mothers who say they didn't know what they really wanted in life, and have now changed their minds about their mate, or about being a mother.  If the right-to-life of the unborn is violated because of something like a person's feelings about their marriage ... then it will be legally challenged and trumped in any number of circumstances, since you have opened the door to complete subjectivity.  

quote:
Me: I'm asking you to support the priority of your moral imperitives.  Where, outside abortion, does a non-life-threatening situation take precedence over the life of another human being?  

Moonbeam: I can't easily support the priority of my moral imperatives without giving detailed examples, it's an evidential thing, which I'm not sure I want to elaborate on here.  Answer all my questions at the beginning of this post and I may discuss this further if you want.


I did explain that your examples either involved animal life, or persons themselves guilty of murder or posing a real danger to the lives of others.  At the very least I've shown that all these examples are radically different from an in untero human being who has done nothing and can do nothing to harm another life.


Though slightly altered according to the ground we've covered, I would like to ask you again:

Where, outside abortion, does a non-life-threatening situation take precedence over the life of another innocent (legally) human being?

quote:
Me: I do believe however, along with education about the nature of the fetus and social helps, that far less women would resort to abortion."

>>>MB: I agree!!


(smile).  I happy that we can agree on this much.


quote:
Misunderstanding Stephen.  I meant as in kill herself, or take herself off to a place where abortions would be performed that are illegal where she is, or harm herself in other ways which would also harm the foetus.  I was simply pointing out the obvious practical position, that the foetus is at the mercy of the mother, with the possible implication that collaboration might be better than confrontation.


I hear where you are coming from ... Yet, as I explained to Bob, I don't accept that the legal protection of the unborn, and compassionate collaboration with pregant women are mutually exclusive.


Stephen  
moonbeam
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174 posted 10-30-2008 07:09 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Heavens Stephen!  You'll have to give me a few days to get myself together on this again.  I'll see what I can do over the weekend.

I hope you are well.

Best.

M
 
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