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So What Is It If It Survives

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Ron
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25 posted 09-21-2008 12:08 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Bob, I typically find that people resent any argument based largely or solely on religious beliefs. "Because God said so" isn't very convincing, save perhaps to those already convinced.

It works both ways, though.

Your last post seems to take potshots at the religious for seemingly no other reason than that some of them disagree with you. That, again, is only going to convince those already convinced. I think that most people of faith would argue that murder is wrong. I don't think that makes murder a religious issue, and I don't think it would be prudent to dismiss arguments against murder just because they were made by people you appear to dislike. Similarly, abortion isn't a religious argument. In my opinion, trying to make it one only clouds the issues.

On an unrelated note, I know how you value references, so perhaps you could give us some support for your contention that "abortions . . . are apparently stable whether they are legal or not?" That seems a little hard to either prove or disprove, so I'm guessing that's more of a guess than a statistic. Would that be a fair assessment?


Bob K
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26 posted 09-21-2008 06:54 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K

Dear Ron,

          There was a large study, worldwide, published in The Lancet in 2007 that has apparently aroused a great deal of interest.  

     It's pretty much crowded other stuff off the google site, though I will continue looking.  Fortunately for me, it supports the position I took.  I did do some research, after all, before I started talking.  The articles I site here emphasize different aspects of the study.  I should try to see if I can get a copy of The Lancet someplace.  I confess to not being good with the computer, so I think there's one reference that crops up a few times and doesn't show up.  Have a look see.

http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/10/12/news/12abortion.php  http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/12/world/12abortion.html?_r=1&oref=slogin]http://www.nytimes.com/ 2007/10/12/world/12abortion.html?_r=1&oref=slogin]http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/12/world/12abortion.html?_r=1&oref=slogin[/URL][/URL]  
]http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/10/27/485]
http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/10/12/news/12abortion.php
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/12/world/12abortion.html?_r=1&oref=slogin
http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/10/27/485[/URL]  3/
http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/opinion/la-oe-richards29oc  t29,0,5137479.story?coll=la-news-comment

     The references are all pretty solid.  I think I omitted the one from The Nation.  I generally make a point of doing that; but if you're interested there is a good article there by Katha Pollitt.

     I'm not against religion, Ron; I'm against religion that attempts to make government policy about what goes on in bedrooms and how women deal with their bodies, and how those of us who don't happen to believe in their particular brand of religion need to follow their religious rules.  I lost confidence in that sort of thing when I heard people at an anti-choice rally cheer for the guy who shot a couple of GYN docs working at two women's health clinics in Boston.  It's been a long time, so I may have gotten my facts off a bit, but I remember a receptionist died and other folks were shot.  Big celebration.

     And if you haven't heard the lecture about with rights come responsibilities, allow me to express a certain amount of surprise.  It's a common point.  The point I was making is that in talking about granting rights to fetal tissue, there is but half an argument being set out, since these fetuses are not actually being expected to act in a responsible fashion till much later.  Certainly some of the politicians who scream most loudly for their right to life before they are born, give the appearance of being grimly determined not to feed them, house them or educate them or attend to their safety until they can vote.  Even then, that will often depend on their race.  Should the child be unfortunate enough to run afoul of the law, this is one of the few countries in the world that will execute a child of 18 or under, in some cases even if they are too simple minded to understand what they are in trouble about.  Why would I not assume that the politicians are pandering to a right wing religious voting block when the same politicians make no particular show of having any other moral commitment to the values these religious are supposed to espouse on a daily basis, but which are not hard core vote-getting issues?  

     I respect the religions; the people who exploit them cynically for power, I confess I am troubled by.  Any religion, when it loses touch with the love that is at the core of it, threatens to become demonic.  I would have to include the extremes of rationalism that science can extend to at times.  We really need to bring a little of everything we have in order to express our humanity.  Fairy tales tell us that it's unwise to exclude folks from the party, like the witch who put the curse on snow white, who wasn't invited to the christening.  But I'm getting too psychological here, and it's almost four in the morning here.  Best wishes to you Ron, and thank you for your considerate letter.  I so frequently get better than I deserve from you.  Best, Bob Kaven
Grinch
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27 posted 09-21-2008 08:25 AM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

quote:
the right of the child's life not to be taken just because he/she is not wanted by a parent?


Whatís the answer then Ess, presumably youĎve thought about what weĎre going to do with all those kids? If it were possible to stop all abortions tomorrow (better Ron?) what exactly do you propose that we do with the 43 million kids?

Could we find homes for all of them?

I could probably take one, two at a push, itíd be a long term commitment though and would probably adversely effect my standard of living but Iím willing to accept that cost. How many can you take in? Surely you can manage one, Bob must be able to manage two and I reckon Ron can manage another. Thatís six. All we need to do now is to find homes for the other 42,999994.

I think youíll find though that come next year I wonít want another. Well thatís not exactly correct, Iíll want to take on another, I love kids, but I just couldnít manage another either financially or physically - my wife and I arenít getting any younger. Hopefully you can understand that there comes a point where taking on another child just isnít possible.

Now I just feel bad - I really want to help, Iíll tell you what instead of taking the kids in canít we just pay towards their upkeep - a tax increase perhaps to meet the costs -  I could go for that. How much is it likely to cost?

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article632126.ece

£180,000 per child!! Thatís £8700 a year per child for 21 years!! Thatís £374100000000 a year in total!!

Thatís about £56 per year for every man woman and child in the world but obviously not all of them can contribute - lets say that 20% can contribute. That raises the cost per contributor to £283 a year - I can live with that.

But hang on - next year thereíll be another 43 million additional kids which will add another £283 if the number of unwanted kids stays exactly the same, and every year after that itíll rise by the same amount. Unless of course all those kids start having kids when they hit sixteen. My head hurts thinking about it.

Iím stumped Ess, I donít think I can afford to keep paying out for all those kids - put me out of my misery - whatís the answer?
Bob K
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28 posted 09-21-2008 06:19 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



Dear Grinch,

          Very interesting.  You're a wise one, Mr. Grinch.  While I was doing some checking to answer Ron, I ran across this citation from the L.A. Times, my home town paper, which speaks to the very thing you're talking about.  Enjoy.
http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/opinion/la-oe-richards29oct29,0,5137479.story?coll=la-news-comment

All my best,  Bob Kaven
Essorant
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29 posted 09-21-2008 08:56 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Grinch

quote:
Whatís the answer then Ess, presumably youĎve thought about what weĎre going to do with all those kids? If it were possible to stop all abortions tomorrow (better Ron?) what exactly do you propose that we do with the 43 million kids?



You make it sound as if we are not already dealing with the problem the way it is right now.   There are already people wellnigh everywhere that need special care. Other children, elderly folks, handicapped, people in jail, etc  We have examples in every group.   Of course it is crowded and difficult in many cases, but their right to live is still defended by the law and no one, caregiver or otherwise, may take their right to live away only because they don't want them or the burden of taking care of them.  

In short, the answer, the right answer, is to help them and others that need help as much as we possibly may.  


serenity blaze
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30 posted 09-21-2008 11:27 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

I am appalled at the lack of woman voice in this thread. I sincerely hope my joking didn't contribute to that, but even as I type those words? I laugh.

Y'guys don't really think you control shtuff, doya?

(Ladies? I think they think they do.)

Ya'll don't really control anything.

NEVER DID.

I hope that fact isn't news to you.


Bob K
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31 posted 09-22-2008 03:36 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


Dear Serenity,

           I think it depends on which women I'm talking to and what the discussion is about.  I get the response you've just offered sometimes, and I believe that it's true.  And sometimes I get the response that says that men have held us back from our attempts to gain legitimacy and equality in the world.  And I believe that's true.  I believe a number of viewpoints are true, Serenity, and I don't think any of them has a complete lock on the truth.  I used to want to get a group of women who disagreed about this and close them in a room to argue it out until they were finished.  I realized that this was a solution that wouldn't work; and that all the points of views, and lots of others too, had a piece of reality, and that the problem was how to put it all together.

     People as a rule don't want it put different points of view together at this point.

     People, I believe, would rather win than understand.

     Not that I want to generalize or anything.

     One of the reasons that it takes so long to get any good at tai chi chuan is that you have to learn the lesson called "investing in loss."  Unless you learn that lessonóand I haven't even finished learning this version of the form yet, let alone reaching the point of actively working on this lessonóyou will always be at the mercy of somebody who has learned it.  You betray yourself by tipping your hand as you go in for the kill.  Someone who has learned to "invest in loss" will understand what you are doing better than you do, and allow you to defeat yourself.

     Why do you allow yourself to voice only this half of the truth, Serenity, when there is more to it?

     Do you believe women's voices are unwelcome here?  The study I quoted is much too complex to be categorized as gender biased, and I see no indication that you looked at any of the data from it.  If you did, of course, I apologize.  But I did mention the article by Katha Pollitt in The Nation, which should address some of your concerns.  Why not give it a look?

Sincerely, Bob Kaven
serenity blaze
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32 posted 09-22-2008 04:51 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

bob?

I'd consider that first paragraph less insulting if you didn't preface it with:

"I think it depends on which women I'm talking to and what the discussion is about"

tsk...

Okay, I'm willing to concede there are women who want to have that pat on the head.

I ain't one of 'em.

I had an abortion. I'm damned glad I did. I would have a completely different life, and probably wouldn't have the children I have now if I'd chosen to proceed with a pregnancy that would have resulted in a cocaine addicted baby. (That was just the least of it, Bob. We have no idea if the baby would have been born at all, actually, or it could have been Einstein, I have NO IDEA--I chose to abort.)

I chose.

I chose to abort.

Got it?

Do not placate me.

(Do you sense I'm a bit peed off now?)

You should.



YOU do not get to talk to me about chi chuan--no--and you don't get to talk to me about "investing in loss".

And you want to know why I think women are not talking here?

Because, Bob, until you've talked to a woman who has reversed her entire natural cycle creation, you can't understand what it means to invest in loss.

bleed

that is an investment in loss

I don't mean to be that harsh, but it's that harsh.

"Why do you allow yourself to voice only this half of the truth, Serenity, when there is more to it?"

I was being gentle, Bob.

You don't know what it means to be two people at once.

Only women know that.

and only for a short time, at that.

I really think you peed me off, Bob.

But I'll get over it.

Grinch
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33 posted 09-22-2008 09:04 AM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


Karen,

Sorry.

If Iíve inadvertently offended you I apologise, thatĎs the last thing I wanted to do. I was simply trying to point out what I honestly believe, which, in essence, is that whether to have an abortion or not to have an abortion should be decided by the expectant Mother. At the same time I believe that the potential suffering, of all parties,  should be minimised by reducing that window of choice to the first ten weeks.

Iím not (quite) stupid enough to believe I can control what other people do or think, all I can do is add my voice and opinion to the debate in the hope that it might make a difference.

I guess Iíve done that so Iíll just leave it there.

Huan Yi
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34 posted 09-22-2008 04:22 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article625477.ece


.

Bob K
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35 posted 09-22-2008 07:32 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K

Dear Serenity,

          Exactly what is insulting about that first paragraph?  and why do you think I am being critical of your having an abortion? or anybody having one, for that matter?

I was reacting to your comment about men's thinking about control of the world.

Do men control the world?

The truth is I wouldn't know how to get a measurable answer to that question, or any kind of objective answer.  I wouldn't be surprised if somebody else did, but I don't.

I know that I've gotten two sorts of answers to that question from women over the years.  Women really run everything.  Women have been kept from having any power by men for a very long time.  There is nothing to argue about here, Serenity.  Those really are the kinds of responses I've gotten.  

What is patronizing about that?  It's reportage.

Is the truth that women run the world news to me?

That fact that some women think they do sometimes is not news to me.  The fact that this is even true in a way is not news to me either.

Is the fact that women are kept in a position of relative powerlessness by men news to me?

The facts that some women believe this to be true is not news to me, no.  The fact that this is even true in a way is not news to me either.

Nor has it escaped my notice that both points of view contradict each other and that I agree with both of them.

What you choose to listen to of what I say is up to you; it's entirely your choice.  I have nothing to say about it.  Once the words leave my mouth, I loose control of them.  This discussion is apparently an example, since I can't recognize anything I said from your reaction to it.  If I want to talk about tai chi, you certainly don't have to listen.  In fact, I recommend that you don't.  If the knowledge is offense or if you don't agree with it, I'm happy to have it for my own, to work on understanding as best I can by myself.  I find it almost impossible to integrate as it is; though I must say, I owe you some thanks for the practice.

You might also check out that Katha Pollitt article in The Nation to get some idea of what I was talking about.  I'm not interested in patting you on the head.  Nor am I interested in being seen as somebody who thinks anybody but you should be making choices about your body.  Nor do I recall having said anything to that effect.  Pro choice.

Pro-choice doesn't mean that I think women run the world all the time.  I take the yin-yang business seriously.

Bob K.
Stephanos
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36 posted 09-23-2008 02:25 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Grinch:
quote:
Evidence of the get out clause in action lies in the answer to question three. If the donor decides to live his\her life disconnected from the President the President dies, this would seem to impinge on the right of the president to live. The get out clause however allows the donor to abdicate responsibility because he\she is not obligated to take into account the viability of the President to live.


One obvious difference between your bizarre analogy and gestation, is that the unborn is in no way permanently "connected" to the mother.  Nine months is a far cry from that.  

Another problem is that you can't account for why the example of a mother who decides to abandon her week old baby (who also cannot survive without the mother's actions, even if that action is only as much as arranging for an adoption or turning the child in to Social Services) does not also apply in an analogous way to pregnancy.  For with either the newborn or the unborn, survival is impossible without the mother.  

Though we would all wish for more (a life long commitment) a mother only need to go through with having the child, and following through with making arrangements for adoption / foster care.  

quote:
As a side issue there are 42 million abortions a year, what do we do with all those unwanted children if abortion is suddenly stopped?


We would continue to make adoption and foster care more attractive (adoption tax credits and cost control helps here), and concurrently work socially/financially to help young mothers choose to keep and care for their children.  

The rhetorical trick in your statement is in the idea of "unwanted".  the question is, unwanted when and for how long?  Does a system which sheepishly calls the unborn child "products of conception" or some other conscience-numbing term, encourage people to persevere in hard times, to doubt their desperate (but possibly temporary) desire to just end things, to seek other alternatives?  I would bet some honest counseling about fetal development (with the visual clarity that is possible with our present technology), and later the introductcion of the child through birth would cure an astoundingly large amount of "unwanting".  It's much easier to not want whom you've never met and bonded with.  The abortion industry plays on this unfamiliarity I believe, and widens the divide even more by being ambigious (if not outright denying it) about whether there is an actual killing of a human being involved.


Ron:
quote:
Neither, then, would the battle against cancer, Stephen. Radiation and chemotherapy both contradict your precept of "first, do no harm." They contradict it big time.


Pardon me, but that's sophistry.

No system is perfect; Nor can any philosophy be kept to a tee I supose; But destroying some good cells (which will mostly recover if the cancer itself is survived) along with malignant cells to possibly save a person's life, cannot be compared with killing an unborn human being for another person's ease.

Remember, I am not questioning the right to abortion where the mother's life is in jeopardy.  So what exactly IS the medical condition that is treated by abortion?  You're not seriously going to try and equate pregnancy with Squamous Cell Carcinoma?  

The tight logic you are usually known for Ron, should not miss the unalterable fact that a human organism in early development isn't a tumor.


Grinch:
quote:
Primum non nocere ďfirst, do no harmĒ as you also rightly point out isnít always the aim of modern medical practitioners. Itís often replaced with Primum succurrere ďfirst, hasten to helpĒ which is probably more apt in the case of abortions.


I asked Ron this, now I'll ask you ...

What medical condition does abortion treat?


Bob:
quote:
It does nothing to decrease the number of abortions, which are apparently about stable whether they are legal or not.


I don't agree with that for a couple of reasons.  I have read that the quoted numbers of women's deaths due to "back alley abortions" prior to Roe Vs. Wade is simply false.  Bernard Nathanson, once-abortion-advocate and abortion MD, wrote that the quotes about "10,000" per year were not based on real stats which have apparently proven to be somewhere closer to 60.  And even if there were many deaths unreported, the commonly claimed figures are exaggerated to say the least.  

Secondly, it is reasonable to think that a system which makes abortions easier and safer, and sanctions them, would yield more of them.  This is especially true if the system is somewhat designed in concord with our legal tendency (except in certain telling cases) of viewing the fetus as not-a-human-being.  "Uterine Content" and "Products of conception" and professional assurances that what is being destroyed is not really a person yet, contribute to the "sellability" of abortion.  Spared from this, I am sure that scores of women would be dissuaded from that course of action.  If the fetus is not a human being worthy of protection, then why not make life easier via abortion?

If the counter argument is made that I am basing this on intuition and not statistics, I will point out that the pro-abortion argument is neither based on statistics, but rather a "gut" feeling that desperate women will have it done whether "safe and legal" or not.  I simply think given the better information, it would not at all be the case.  Of course you will always have some.  But if "people will do it anyway" is any kind of argument against abortion being illegal, it is an argument against anything being illegal.

quote:
(The) granting of "rights" to a fetus in the womb seems a ridiculous legal charade to cover the attempt of the religious right to impose an archaic religious standard on the rest of the population.


This is really avoiding the arguments.  Though Christians have the best metaphysical / ethical foundation from which to argue protection of the unborn, the pro-life arguments out there aren't exclusively religious. They are based upon the same moral (and legal) principles most non-Christians hold concerning human rights in other contexts.  They are also based upon rational and scientific principles.  The fact is, you are only speaking of the weakest arguments for pro-life if you think it's exclusively presented in King James paraphrase.  Scott Klusendorf and Francis Beckwith are two proponents of the pro-life position you should consider.

http://www.amazon.com/Defending-Life-Against-Abor                 tion-Choice/dp/0521691354/ref=pd_bbs_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1222149346&sr=8-1


quote:
Ron; I'm against religion that attempts to make government policy about what goes on in bedrooms and how women deal with their bodies, and how those of us who don't happen to believe in their particular brand of religion need to follow their religious rules.


Well I'll use a wholly non-religious argument to counter your pro-abortion argument:  

I'll begin with a question.  How can you scientifically support the premise that this is only a question of how women deal with "their" own bodies.  Is it scientifically tenable to say there is only one body involved after conception?

quote:
I lost confidence in that sort of thing when I heard people at an anti-choice rally cheer for the guy who shot a couple of GYN docs working at two women's health clinics in Boston.  It's been a long time, so I may have gotten my facts off a bit, but I remember a receptionist died and other folks were shot.  Big celebration.


Understandable Bob.  But positions cannot be rightly judged by their abuses or extremes, else you're either attacking a straw man, or letting a straw man scare you away from the real field.  Maybe a few abortion doctors are also baby killers (born babies).  But it would be irrational for me to let that that determine my thoughts about abortion.

I detest the killing of abortion doctors just as much as I detest the killing of unborn human beings.

quote:
And if you haven't heard the lecture about with rights come responsibilities, allow me to express a certain amount of surprise.  It's a common point.  The point I was making is that in talking about granting rights to fetal tissue, there is but half an argument being set out, since these fetuses are not actually being expected to act in a responsible fashion till much later.


It seems to me you've made it sound like a temporarily comatose patient should be held responsible for causing his family financial and emotional hardship for having a stroke.  We still grant those people rights too.  The fact is there is a myriad of situations where we grant rights to humans who have no, or very little responsibility.  The newborn being the most obvious thorn to your argument about rights demanding responsibilities.  Unless I've misunderstood you here ...

quote:
I respect the religions; the people who exploit them cynically for power, I confess I am troubled by.  Any religion, when it loses touch with the love that is at the core of it, threatens to become demonic.


Agreed Bob.  

But the desire to protect human life is not necessarily a power move.  

If those who want to protect the unborn are often inconsistent by being against social programs to help women and children, then that is a whole other issue.  But this is not always the case.  Jim Bouder on this very forum occasionally, I believe is both pro-life and a social activist.


Lastly,

I don't think that the issue is necessarily one that has much to do with feminism, except for the fact that women are the most immediate decision-makers because of childbearing capacity.  Neither do I think that disagreeing with someone else's choice (based upon principle), means that I have the right to despise them or doubt that there were challenging "reasons" involved.  Bob talks about love and understanding, and I think we need that as much as possible.  And women should be welcome to this thread.  I suppose the decision for anyone not to join the discussion also has to do with "choice".  


Stephen  

[This message has been edited by Stephanos (09-23-2008 11:28 AM).]

Ron
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37 posted 09-23-2008 11:29 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
There was a large study, worldwide, published in The Lancet in 2007 that has apparently aroused a great deal of interest.

I read some of your links, Bob, at least those that worked. I'm not sure a study conducted by a "reproductive rights group" is one I would consider unbiased, and I think that's important when a large part of the study is based on estimated numbers. I think Stephen's argument is much more compelling. Even more convincing, at least personally, is that I know a woman who had an abortion. I knew her well enough to know she wouldn't have done it if she had felt at all unsafe. It's anecdotal, sure, but it suggests there was at least one child who might have lived had abortions been a little less easy to get.

quote:
Pardon me, but that's sophistry. No system is perfect; Nor can any philosophy be kept to a tee I supose; But destroying some good cells (which will mostly recover if the cancer itself is survived) along with malignant cells to possibly save a person's life, cannot be compared with killing an unborn human being for another person's ease.

First, Stephen, I think the comparison is apt enough. In both instances, we're talking about ridding a person's body of unwanted cells that have the potential to adversely effect their life.

Second, my comments weren't meant as a defense for abortion. Rather they were intended to suggest your "Primum non nocere" argument was, well, frankly a bit of sophistry. It is, after all, a tenet of modern medicine that is quickly put aside when it makes sense to do so. As such, I don't think you get to legitimately use it as a rule that pits abortion against "the true spirit of medicine."

quote:
So what exactly IS the medical condition that is treated by abortion?

Pregnancy, of course. Or would you disagree that pregnancy is a medical condition, Stephen? One with far reaching effects on a person's life?  Or would you perhaps argue that we shouldn't treat conditions that are ultimately self-induced and avoidable? You know, like pregnancy, lung cancer, adult onset diabetes, most instances of high blood pressure, yada yada yada?

quote:
But if "people will do it anyway" is any kind of argument against abortion being illegal, it is an argument against anything being illegal.

No, Stephen, not anything. We still need laws to protect people from other people. At issue, I think, are the laws designed to protect people from their own flawed natures. You know, like prohibition? Or, for that matter, recreational drugs, prostitution, and gambling. Laws that try to legislate morality don't work. They never have and I suspect they never will. Congress can't rescind the laws of physics and they can't stop people from being people.

quote:
The abortion industry plays on this unfamiliarity I believe, and widens the divide even more by being ambigious (if not outright denying it) about whether there is an actual killing of a human being involved.

And there's the whole crux of the matter, Stephen.

In this particular thread, we see exactly the reverse of that ambiguity, by yourself, Stephen, as well as by Essorant and Grinch, I think. Just about every post in this thread speaks of a human life when neither its humanity nor its life have been agreed upon.

No one disagrees with the sanctity of human life. Arguments that pit the life of a child against the life style of the mother are simply songs being sung to the choir. We all agree.

What we have not agreed upon is when that life comes into existence.
Grinch
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38 posted 09-23-2008 02:43 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

quote:
the unborn is in no way permanently "connected" to the mother


Iím not even a mother Stephen but I still feel permanently connected to my kids but if you want to quibble that itís not a physical connection I wonít argue the point. Change the length of time the connection the donor has to sustain to nine months - does he\she have the right to request to be disconnected after 20 weeks?

quote:
For with either the newborn or the unborn, survival is impossible without the mother


Thatís just not true though is it, the orphanages of the world are full of kids separated from their mother at birth that are evidence against your statement regarding newborns. In addition this thread itself is based entirely on the premise that unborn foetuses are capable of survival from 20 weeks when separated from the mother.

quote:
We would continue to make adoption and foster care more attractive (adoption tax credits and cost control helps here), and concurrently work socially/financially to help young mothers choose to keep and care for their children.


I think Iíve already pointed out the fly in that particular ointment - we cannot possibly support 43 million orphan kids every year - we canĎt even support the number that are born now. Saying we should or we could is all well and good but at some point you have to face the fact that we simply canít.

quote:
I would bet some honest counseling about fetal development (with the visual clarity that is possible with our present technology), and later the introductcion of the child through birth would cure an astoundingly large amount of "unwanting".



Fine, so youíre suggesting that the an attempt is made to get the mother to bond with the unborn child, I donít think thatís unreasonable as long as after the attempted bonding if the mother still wants to go through with the abortion sheís free to do so.

quote:
What we have not agreed upon is when that life comes into existence.


I donít think we ever will Ron but I donít mind trying:

My definition of life, in this case, would be the point at which the foetus can survive, with or without medical assistance, when separated from the mother. Thatís based on the premise that the ability to live is a fundamental requirement to possess a quality that can be described as lfe.

Specifying that in terms of weeks is a little more difficult, medical science is permanently pushing back the boundary but at present it stands at around 20 weeks. Which is why I suggested half that - 10 weeks - as a reasonable upper limit after which social abortion shouldnĎt be permitted without further investigation.

[This message has been edited by Grinch (09-23-2008 06:37 PM).]

echolong
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39 posted 09-23-2008 03:12 PM       View Profile for echolong   Email echolong   Edit/Delete Message     View IP for echolong

First, Stephen, I think the comparison is apt enough. In both instances, we're talking about ridding a person's body of unwanted cells that have the potential to adversely effect their life.
The difference of those cells
Cancer cell growing will kill a life.
Fertilized egg growing will produce a live-offspring

"the true spirit of medicine."
Abortion kills mother, hurt mother, and hurt function of fertility. And there are many side effects including mental problems such as depression.
Pregnancy is a natural reproductive activity. It is not medical problem.
But to abort ďunwantedĒ pregnancy   is like using drug, gambling, or smoking or secondhand smoking (like being raped )  is not a healthy thing.  
Is abortion killing life?  Why do people freeze their eggs and sperms if they are not life?
Pregnancy, of course. Or would you disagree that pregnancy is a medical condition, Stephen? One with far reaching effects on a person's life?
Very right. This is how human species are still here today.
Or would you perhaps argue that we shouldn't treat conditions that are ultimately self-induced and avoidable? You know, like pregnancy, lung cancer, adult onset diabetes, most instances of high blood pressure, yada yada yada?
Why?  Stephen is a nurse. But he is a person with mercy!

We still need  Laws that try to legislate morality don't work. They never have and I suspect they never will. Congress can't rescind the laws of physics and they can't stop people from being people.
Law can stop people being self-righteous to kill.

Abortion(except of being raped and congenital malformation) is not merely a moral issue which the moral judgment is to have the sex or not. Abortion brings many medical problems.

Old Echo
Ron
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quote:
Abortion kills mother, hurt mother, and hurt function of fertility. And there are many side effects including mental problems such as depression.

Right, Echo. So we should protect the mother from herself?
Stephanos
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41 posted 09-23-2008 04:03 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Ron:
quote:
First, Stephen, I think the comparison is apt enough. In both instances, we're talking about ridding a person's body of unwanted cells that have the potential to adversely effect their life.


only one set of cells is a malignancy, the other is a human organism according to embryologists.

The comparison is ludicrous.

quote:
Me: So what exactly IS the medical condition that is treated by abortion?


Ron: Pregnancy, of course. Or would you disagree that pregnancy is a medical condition, Stephen? One with far reaching effects on a person's life?


It is not a medical condition Ron, not exactly.  Of course the medical community of OB/GYN services exists to manage the actual and potential conditions that accompany the birth of a child.  If one may think of it as a "medical condition" or diagnosis, it is a very unique one with an important caveat ... The goal of medicine is to safely bring the natural process to completion, not to end it.  Your argument fails to even mention these very significant differences.  

You're abysmally wrong to say that treating cancer is little or no different than abortion.  Those kinds of arguments remind me of those which can see no difference between a parasite and a nursing child.  

"You lie because you donít know the difference between what nature has meant for nourishment and what is has meant for garbage." (C.S. Lewis, Pilgrim's Regress)


quote:
Or would you perhaps argue that we shouldn't treat conditions that are ultimately self-induced and avoidable? You know, like pregnancy, lung cancer, adult onset diabetes, most instances of high blood pressure, yada yada yada?


More of your reasoning which ignores the most important distinction between any of these diseases and gestation.  Only one produces another human being.  And that is the crux of the whole matter.  It matters little else if it has "far reaching implications" for one's life.  Most things worth protecting happen to be troublesome too.


quote:
No, Stephen, not anything. We still need laws to protect people from other people.


The pro-life argument in a nutshell.  Thank you.

quote:
Laws that try to legislate morality don't work.


Sorry Ron, that's bunk.  You already know that "protecting people from other people" has an intractable moral foundation to it.  You merely exploit the fact that it has social benefits as well, and try to hide the other.  But in addition to the moral side, the argument to make abortion illegal also has pragmatic and social implications which can be argued.  The strongest argument however is human rights.

Ideologies in the past which made certain classes of people less-than-human could have been argued (and were) using your methods.  Heck, them colored slaves were mighty useful to us white folk, and those Jews sure were causing Germany a lot of problems.  

    
quote:
Congress can't rescind the laws of physics and they can't stop people from being people.


Are attempts to curtail robbery murder or tax evasion, the same as trying to "stop people from being people"?  

Neither can congress rescind the laws of biology.  And it's exactly my argument that they can't stop people from being people, even if they are in an early stage of development.

quote:
Just about every post in this thread speaks of a human life when neither its humanity nor its life have been agreed upon.


That's nothing new Ron.  Consensus has never defined truth, or else heliocentrism started with Copernicus.  Neither did the Fuhrer (and many who shared his philosophy) believe certain classes of people to be human.  Lack of total agreement says nothing about truth, or about what we should strive to do.  

I do believe however, if the biological information were shown and given, along with the alternatives (and leaving off the intentional subterfuge) , there'd be much more agreement with the pro-life stance.

quote:
No one disagrees with the sanctity of human life. Arguments that pit the life of a child against the life style of the mother are simply songs being sung to the choir. We all agree.

What we have not agreed upon is when that life comes into existence.


No one EVER disagreed with the sanctity of human life.  What they disagreed on, always, was which groups were to be considered human.  

Perhaps another thing we're not agreed on is whether or not people can be duped about the truth, especially in matters where their personal lifestyle and "choice" seems to be constrained in some way.  


Grinch:
quote:
Change the length of time the connection the donor has to sustained to nine months - does he\she have the right to request to be disconnected after 20 weeks?

Before I answer, allow me to point out that this "donor" of yours is different in another significant way.  In no way did that person's choice have anything to do with whether the other person ever came into being.  I think if people could somehow choose to bring dependent humans into existence (initiating this symbiotic relationship) and then opt out before nine months came, the answer would not be a simple "yes they have the right to quit".

Not denying the humanity, if you can come to that answer easily (or at all) I don't see how.

quote:
Thatís just not true though is it, the orphanages of the world are full of kids separated from their mother at birth that are evidence against your statement regarding newborns.



My answer is in the context of what I wrote (which you excluded):

"you can't account for why the example of a mother who decides to abandon her week old baby (who also cannot survive without the mother's actions, even if that action is only as much as arranging for an adoption or turning the child in to Social Services) does not also apply in an analogous way to pregnancy.  For with either the newborn or the unborn, survival is impossible without the mother."

Without some action by the mother, a newborn child cannot survive.

quote:
I think Iíve already pointed out the fly in that particular ointment - we cannot possibly support 43 million orphan kids every year - we canĎt even support the number that are born now. Saying we should or we could is all well and good but at some point you have to face the fact that we simply canít.


And the fly in your ointment is the unsupportable claim that all women who go through a time of disallusionment or doubt will want to always want to give away their children, or will in no way be able to contribute to their upbringing.  Your 43 million is a rhetorical and unreal estimation.  Do you know how many mothers change their minds about adoption, to the chagrin of newly adoptive parents??

quote:
Right, Echo. So we should protect the mother from herself?


There are laws designed for self protection, and not all of them are unreasonable.  Underage drinking is one example.  But the bologna factor in your argument is that there is no such thing as "only affecting oneself".  Neither does Heroin abuse only affect the abuser.  What about the father of the child or grandparents?  And then there's the unborn human being him or herself.


Stephen
  
echolong
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42 posted 09-23-2008 04:05 PM       View Profile for echolong   Email echolong   Edit/Delete Message     View IP for echolong


Right, Echo. So we should protect the mother from herself?
Dear Sir Ron,
Abortion is a medical procedure which has many side effects.
Pregnancy to giving birth is nature process and it makes woman stronger physically and mentally.  

Old Echo
Grinch
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43 posted 09-23-2008 04:34 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


quote:
Do you know how many mothers change their minds about adoption, to the chagrin of newly adoptive parents??


Somewhere between 1 and 10%  apparently.
http://life.familyeducation.com/adoption/birth-parents/45794.html http://www.adoption-center.org/qanda.htm#changemind

Iím feeling generous though, lets call it 50%, so now we have half of the 43 million in orphanages and half with mothers that youíve suggested would receive financial support from the state, presumably via taxation.

How much is that going to cost in total over the next 21 years?

Bob K
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44 posted 09-23-2008 04:42 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K

A few points:

1) "First, do no harm" is from the Hippocratic oath, which specifically forbade abortion as a medical procedure.  People overlook the context, when they bring this into the argument.  Greece of that Era  divided responsibilities differently.  Abortion was discouraged or punished, but infants were often left out on the hillsides to die.

2) THere is an article on the effectiveness of adoption as a strategy in dealing with abortion rates.  The article doesn't condemn adoption, and neither do I; I'm impressed by it, by the feeling these parents show.  The article talks about why the practice isn't a solution that deals with abortion.
It's straightforward, and it's factual.  It shouldn't discourage adoption.

3) The study I mention was vetted by The Lancet.  It was peer reviewed.  It's had about a year worth of feedback for folks to take pot-shots at experimental design and statistical analysis of the data.  What is it about the statistical work-up of that data makes you believe that it's not been dealt with in ways that doing bring it within appropriate degrees of confidence for inclusion in a scientific study. Ron.  Or is the word "estimated" supposed to mean something other than it's actual statistical meaning?  It sounds as though you are trying to make it sound something like "untrustworthy," or even "falsified."

     What would you estimate the chances of that as being?  In The Lancet.  In a U.N. sponsored study?  And where exactly would you suggest these data gathering problems might lie?

4)  I am sorry that I haven't mastered the ins and outs of computer use.  I do the best I can, but alas that's not very good, and I'm sorry not to give you better material to work with.  I did make an attempt to indicate the link I found problematic; I was afraid that by eliminating it, my poor skills would knock out the rest of the data too.

     On the whole, I thought it better to bring the snacks to the party than to come empty handed.

5)  Stephanos, sorry, but I think that right wing fundamentalists don't all come with King James embroidered on their display hankies.  Some of them may even come with copies of Chuck Darwin tucked in their brief cases.   Foolishness, like genius, is an equal opportunity employer, though it's hiring policy appears to be much more generous.

6)  My understanding is perhaps incorrect, but I believe that carrying a child through to a full term delivery is apparently (and anti-intuitively) more dangerous than having an abortion, statistically speaking.  There are a lot of reasons that GYN malpractice insurance premiums are possibly the highest among physicians, and why many GYN's get out of what would otherwise be a very happy field.  This is one of them.
Grinch
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45 posted 09-23-2008 05:06 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

quote:
"First, do no harm" is from the Hippocratic oath


Or maybe not.

http://www.geocities.com/everwild7/noharm.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Primum_non_nocere


Ron
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46 posted 09-23-2008 05:49 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Those kinds of arguments remind me of those which can see no difference between a parasite and a nursing child.

If you happen to be the mother of a parasite, Stephen, you'd likely see it differently.  

quote:
Sorry Ron, that's bunk. You already know that "protecting people from other people" has an intractable moral foundation to it.

I know no such thing, Stephen. The need to protect people from people preceded all known documentations of morality. Sadly, the documentations that followed didn't content themselves with simply protecting people from people, but added to the recipe by including a lot of stuff they thought was important. Trouble is, different groups added different ingredients. Many, for example, are just as intractable about birth control as you are about abortion. Others would make women nothing but a vessel for birth, preferably male births. Why should we believe any of them wrong and you right? What makes your morality better than theirs?

Morality has to be how a person lives their own life. It's what you get to teach your children, and it can even be what you advocate to your neighbors. It cannot, however, be the law simply because you think it's right. You have to come up with better reasons to pass laws than just because they jibe with "your" morality.

quote:
Are attempts to curtail robbery murder or tax evasion, the same as trying to "stop people from being people"?  

Nope, those are examples of protecting people from other people.

quote:
And it's exactly my argument that they can't stop people from being people, even if they are in an early stage of development.

Again, you're being ambiguous, Stephen. How early a stage of development? The religions that refuse to practice birth control would likely have a different answer than yours. Why are they wrong and you're right?

quote:
Consensus has never defined truth, or else heliocentrism started with Copernicus. Neither did the Fuhrer (and many who shared his philosophy) believe certain classes of people to be human. Lack of total agreement says nothing about truth, or about what we should strive to do.

So, uh, you would content that lack of agreement is proof you're right? Sorry, Stephen, but not everyone is Copernicus and, thankfully, not everyone is Adolph Hitler. You're arguing from the negative just equates every unproven contention to heliocentrism and suggests that refusal to recognize chimpanzee rights is an extension of the Third Reich. Copernicus and Hitler were wrong. That doesn't mean we should stop searching for what's right.

quote:
No one EVER disagreed with the sanctity of human life.  What they disagreed on, always, was which groups were to be considered human.

Just as you did in this post, Stephen? Many people place the potential for human life farther back in the chain of events than you appear to do. Once again, what makes them wrong and you right?

quote:
Pregnancy to giving birth is nature process and it makes woman stronger physically and mentally.

Ah, Echo . . . then we should force all women to have as many babies as possible. For their own good, of course.  

quote:
What is it about the statistical work-up of that data makes you believe that it's not been dealt with in ways that doing bring it within appropriate degrees of confidence for inclusion in a scientific study. Ron.

I don't know, Bob, how about this quote from the article: "Anti-abortion groups criticized the research, saying that the scientists had jumped to conclusions from imperfect tallies, often estimates of abortion rates in countries where the procedure was illegal. 'These numbers are not definitive and very susceptible to interpretation according to the agenda of the people who are organizing the data,' said Randall O'Bannon, director of education and research at the National Right to Life Educational Trust Fund in Washington."

quote:
Or maybe not.

LOL. You are being much more gentle with Bob, Grinch, than I would likely have been.  


Huan Yi
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47 posted 09-23-2008 07:40 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.


ďUnwantedĒ seems the critical description here
to which then comes the question: When do "unwanted"
human lives never the less acquire the right to live ?


.


Ron
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48 posted 09-23-2008 08:30 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
When do "unwanted"
human lives never the less acquire the right to live ?

You might have found an adjective you like, John, but your choice of noun phrase isn't the answer to the discussion. It IS the discussion.
echolong
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since 09-17-2008
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49 posted 09-23-2008 08:39 PM       View Profile for echolong   Email echolong   Edit/Delete Message     View IP for echolong

quote:
Ah, Echo . . . then we should force all women to have as many babies as possible. For their own good, of course.

Dear Sir Ron, you win.  
But don't start a petition.
In your book, there is only either free abortion or forced birth, right? Given birth does make women more healthy and beautiful too.

John, "unwanted" is sociological  not biological. Biology wants it...nature wants it. My thought.
 
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