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Bob K
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25 posted 02-24-2012 06:16 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



quote:


Well, Bob, in your reply you've simultaneously continued to demand a "noun" (were you a grammar teacher once? you remind me of one I had long ago), and pointed out in positive terms that I've provided one, without offering any critique of it, apart from your epistemology that nothing whatsoever is certain.††Maybe you could offer a critique of "fetus as human being in early stage of development" that makes use of something other than the impossibility of philosophical certainty about anything at all?††††


I respect you too Bob, and have enjoyed the exchange.††And boy, I'm glad you posted a short one this time.††


Stephen†




     My critique was of ďthe unborn,Ē which did not supply a noun and which confused the discussion for reasons I already specified.  You attempted to blame me for a category error made by polemicists on the religious right, near as I can figure.  That was their error.  It was unsuitable to fault me for it, though in the heat of discussion, itís understandable.  The Religious Right has attempted to focus discussion on some of the qualities of the thing under discussion.  In doing so, it obscure the nature of the thing under discussion, if you follow me.  

     The quality itís shoving into the limelight here is whether or not birth has happened (ďthe unborn") at the expense of the definition of the thing.  A noun, after all, is a person, a place or a thing.  If the nature of the thing is kept unspecified, then the discussion is not about a thing but an abstraction so tenuous it cannot be visualized.
The Religious Right keeps this information vague.  I am willing to talk about ďa human beingĒ because it offers the advantage of an actual noun clause, rather than simply the adjective.  There is a thing involved.  

     The Religious Right gives this thing an immediate promotion to personhood.    

     I would not care to offer a critique of the word ďfetus.Ē  Iím rather fond of it, and it brings up some of the medical material that you sometimes speak about and sometimes donít.

     I googled ďfetusĒ  in the medical dictionary.



fetus†[feītus] (L.)
the developing young in the uterus, specifically the unborn offspring in the postembryonic period, which in humans is from the third month after fertilization until birth. See also embryo.?

The stages of growth of the fetus are fairly well defined. At the end of the first month it has grown beyond microscopic size. After 2 months it is a little over 2.5 cm long, its face is formed, and its limbs are partly formed. By the end of the third month it is 8 cm long and weighs about 30 g; its limbs, fingers, toes, and ears are fully formed, and its sex can be distinguished.

After 4 months the fetus is about 20 cm long and weighs over 200 g. The mother can feel its movements, and usually the health care provider can hear its heartbeat. The eyebrows and eyelashes are formed, and the skin is pink and covered with fine hair called lanugo. By the fifth month the fetus's body is covered with a cheeselike substance (vernix caseosa), which serves to protect it in its watery environment. By the end of the fifth month it is 30 cm long, weighs 450 g, and has hair on its head. At the end of the sixth month it is 35 cm long and weighs 900 g, and its skin is very wrinkled.

After 7 months the fetus is 40 cm long and weighs over 1.3 kg, with more fat under its skin. In the male, the testes have descended into the scrotum. By the end of the eighth month it is 45 cm long, may weigh 2.3 kg, and has a good chance of survival if it is born at that time. At the end of 9 months, the average length of a fetus is 50 cm and the average weight is 3.2 kg. adj., adj feītal.



          ďThe unborn fetusĒ makes a great deal of sense to me.  I like the part where it says that it has a good chance of survival of surviving on its own if itís born at the end of the eighth month.  I understand that with help the fetus can actually survive in some cases if necessary with substantial help if born as early as the later part of the fifth month.  I have other friends whoíve worked in the medical field, too.

     That doesnít mean that I believe that women should be forced to carry a child they donít wish to carry, however.  They should have available means of conception control and should have abortion available on demand.  Should they wish to talk their decision over with others, those resources should be available for them to take advantage of, free of charge.

     If a woman wishes to have an abortion, the decision should be hers.  Other people do not have to like her decision.  That includes the father of the child.  If you donít like abortion, donít have one.  If you believe that there are alternatives to abortion that work well, that might be enough to convince a lot of women not to have them.  You should really try to set up a working foster care and adoption network that would seem appealing enough to these women that they will simply feel that abortion is a silly choice and that adoption and foster care is the obvious way to go.

     So far, any and all attempts in this direction have been a terrible failure.  Voters wonít pay for it and the law-makers who say they are anti-abortion wonít go two inches out of their way to spend one cent.  Nor will the religious organizations who are so avidly anti-abortion and anti-birth control willing to do anything to make adoption and foster care appealing enough to the people they want to target.  

     A  fetus, I guess, is what an embryo becomes when he does his homework.

     My understanding is that a fetus can quicken, that is learn basic dance moves in utero; while an embryo canít even dream about them.  Traditionally, people have tended to think that a child isnít really alive until it quickens, though  thatís far from universal.

     That would be a distinction between the word ďfetusĒ and ďembryo,Ē though not a critique of either.  Both are in fact unborn states of human development.  Many have considered that ďensoulment,Ē should you believe in that concept, follows upon quickening.  Hereís a quote from one of the great little-read 17th century English poets, Sir John Davies, from one of his fine courtly poems called ďOrchestra, or a Poem of Dauncing.Ē  Itís a long poem, one to be read at, slowly, over time, and out loud if possible, if itís ever possible, for people who love really fine poetry.  If I havenít quoted him before, Iíve deprived you.


ďGreat Nature first doth cause all things to love,
Love makes them daunce and in just order move.Ē

     And of course heís right.
  

Stephanos
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26 posted 02-26-2012 01:17 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

quote:
The Religious Right has attempted to focus discussion on some of the qualities of the thing under discussion.  In doing so, it obscure the nature of the thing under discussion, if you follow me.


I think only for those who aren't paying attention to the larger picture of the debate.  Good pro-life arguments present the thing-in-question as a human-being in early stages of development.  Yes these human-beings are sometimes referred to merely as the 'unborn'.  A mere reference to a random quality?  Not really.  Remember that in the minds of most abortion-rights advocates, birth is the magic line that makes the thing-in-question either a human being worthy of protection, or an interesting though dispensable aggregate of cells.

An attempt to protest the use of the word "unborn" may itself be an effort to obscure, since the fact that the thing-in-question (human-being in reality) will be born, apart from deliberate termination, becomes much more predicate, rather than conversationally covert.


quote:
The quality itís shoving into the limelight here is whether or not birth has happened (ďthe unborn") at the expense of the definition of the thing.  A noun, after all, is a person, a place or a thing.  If the nature of the thing is kept unspecified, then the discussion is not about a thing but an abstraction so tenuous it cannot be visualized.


Not at all at the expense of the definition, except for those who haven't been reading articulate pro-life arguments for themselves.  While the  word "unborn" may be used, it is relevant for the reasons I just mentioned, and not without additional statements about the fetus as a human being in early development.  So the argument has never been about an abstraction, but about an unborn human being.  In pro-life discourse these terms are sometimes used separate, sometimes together, and alongside other terms altogether.


quote:
.I like the part where it says that it has a good chance of survival of surviving on its own if itís born at the end of the eighth month.  I understand that with help the fetus can actually survive in some cases if necessary with substantial help if born as early as the later part of the fifth month.
      

I've never known a newborn, or even a two-year old that could survive on it's own either.  Dependence, with medical technology or otherwise, is another faux criterion for calling the fetus human, in abortion rights arguments (The viability argument).


quote:
That doesnít mean that I believe that women should be forced to carry a child they donít wish to carry, however.  They should have available means of conception control and should have abortion available on demand.


Why should a woman be forced to feed a child they don't wish to feed then?  Why should they not also have infanticide available on demand?  If it's all and only about the wishes of the woman?  The woman's right of choice and action would not supercede the human rights of a newborn infant.  Why should it be different in pregnancy?  


quote:
If a woman wishes to have an abortion, the decision should be hers.  Other people do not have to like her decision.


If a woman wishes to have infanticide, the decision should not be hers.  She does not have to like the decision of law.  


What I said is obviously radically different than what you said, though you'd agree I think.  I'm consistent in my basic approach with the unborn and the newborn.  But with you, why such a radical difference between an unborn human being in an early stage of development, and a born human being in an early stage of development?  Why are the "wishes" of the woman of highest regard in one case, and hopelessly subordinate in the other?

Or if you don't like the way I've worded my question (being so assertive about the fetus being human), why is the thing-in-question worthy of human rights after exiting the body of the mother, but not also before?    

quote:
If you donít like abortion, donít have one.


I won't Bob.

If you don't like traffic laws, don't drive.

If you don't like the responsibility of children don't get pregnant, and don't get someone pregnant.  

If you are not avoiding responsibility, but honest to goodness cannot take care of your child to be, there are other options besides keeping the child or terminating your pregnancy.  

quote:
If you believe that there are alternatives to abortion that work well, that might be enough to convince a lot of women not to have them.  You should really try to set up a working foster care and adoption network that would seem appealing enough to these women that they will simply feel that abortion is a silly choice and that adoption and foster care is the obvious way to go.


Thanks Bob for the recommendation.  We have contributed to adoption agencies.  We've also adopted twice ourselves from a culture where the Government has often forced abortion with mothers who have violated one-child-only laws.  I'm fairly certain that most adoption agencies do hold a pro-life philosophy, and many of them were established with the idea of being a life-affirming alternative to abortion.  They are certainly worthy of our support, whether we are able to start such an organization, or merely financially help those already established.  


quote:
So far, any and all attempts in this direction have been a terrible failure.  Voters wonít pay for it and the law-makers who say they are anti-abortion wonít go two inches out of their way to spend one cent.  Nor will the religious organizations who are so avidly anti-abortion and anti-birth control willing to do anything to make adoption and foster care appealing enough to the people they want to target.


I certainly don't take any of this without a grain of salt ... okay, well I'm going to need a shaker.  Okay, much of this is simply untrue.  Not one red cent?  Nothing done at all.  Sounds like "dismissal by alleged abysmal failure".  It's not a degree of failure (which could be cited for most any enterprise, including, thankfully, the abortion industry) that I object to, not even huge failure, but the tone of replete futility, which just isn't true.  


There is typically NO COST to give up a baby for adoption.  That can't even be said for abortion.  So what are you expecting to be done by adoption agencies to make such a thing easier?  

quote:
  A  fetus, I guess, is what an embryo becomes when he does his homework.


Or is not expelled.  


quote:
My understanding is that a fetus can quicken, that is learn basic dance moves in utero; while an embryo canít even dream about them.


My understanding is that both of these are human beings in early stages of development.  3 weeks after fertilization and the embryo has literally a beating heart.


As always interesting discussion Bob.  But since we've talked about category errors, I'll share another one in the ongoing abortion debate.  


In Georgia a bill was lately introduced to make the legal time-frame for abortion less, from 24 to 20 weeks I believe.  In response a ridiculous bill was introduced to make vasectomies illegal, apparantly to let males know what it feels like to have medical decisions made for them.  Did anyone notice that the natural correlative for vasectomy is a tubal ligation or hysterectomy, not an abortion?  


I believe many brain cells are being aborted.  


Stephen      
Bob K
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27 posted 02-27-2012 06:36 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K

[Edited - Talk about the post, Bob, not the poster. Thank you, Ron.

[This message has been edited by Ron (02-28-2012 02:30 AM).]

Bob K
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28 posted 03-01-2012 01:33 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


     I think the notion is that men don't actually feel the intrusion of of other people into their physical boundaries the way that I believe at least some women do.

     I can't tell you for sure because surity requires I be able to pass a physical exam that I simply cannot pass.  But this is what I think.  This intrusion of the one gender into the areas that the other feels is theirs by right of bodily integrity has caused massive rage going back at least as far as the Trojan war.

     We can argue whether or not Helen was Agamemnon's property all day and all night, and whether Agamemnon was going to war about whether he felt he had a right to control Helen and her body or not in actual fact, but the basic principle is probably there.

     Probably.

     As a guy, I have the right to say what you do with your body and  the genetic products of your body.  In the end, I have a right to kill you and your offspring if you don't please me.  This gathers from a few different cultures and edits and patches to support my thesis, but if you dishonor me or my clan many middle eastern cultures allow or even demand I take your life if you are are woman; and, under Roman law, a father may kill his children for displeasing him right up until the time he dies.  A lot of the somewhat unpleasant royal infighting in the Roman royal and imperial houses was very distasteful but legal under Roman law, by extention.  

     While we function under English Law, which is better in many ways, this whole business about what the actual rights of women actually are seem to me to be in something of a flux.  Roman Law seems to govern some of the ways we look at women.   I'd be interested in seeing how the legal notions of women and children are reflected  in the way the Catholic Church and the religious community thinks about Abortion and birth control, and how English common law thinks about Abortion on the other hand.  I'd also like to know where the thinking about women having a right to make up their own minds about bringing a child to term on not comes from, and what legitimacy that idea feels it rests upon.

      I have to say that I think that there is a powerful biology behind a woman wanting to bear a child, and that there's a lot of behavior in men and women both directed toward making sure that a live birth happens, and that the live birth ends up as a functioning and reproducing adult that will repeat the process.  For something else to happen along the way, there's got to be a pretty good reason.

     For that thing to happen as frequently and as successfully as planned abortion and planned birth control,  the reason has god to be better than pretty good.  Both practices have history going back as far as we have written records.  If you wish to exercise any successful control over the practice of abortion, then I think you would need at a minimum, an understanding of the advantages that it provides and of the purposes it serves, and that you be willing to examine ways of providing those advantages at least as well and at least as easily as abortion does itself.

     Otherwise, Abortion will continue to be the solution of choice.

     The test of that point when an appropriate alternative has been found is when the abortion numbers begin to drop and the number of people availing themselves of your solution begin to rise in proportion.  It's not easy.  It is simple.
Stephanos
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29 posted 03-05-2012 03:47 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Bob:
quote:
I think the notion is that men don't actually feel the intrusion of of other people into their physical boundaries the way that I believe at least some women do.

     I can't tell you for sure because surity requires I be able to pass a physical exam that I simply cannot pass.  But this is what I think.  This intrusion of the one gender into the areas that the other feels is theirs by right of bodily integrity has caused massive rage going back at least as far as the Trojan war.


Conceded.  As long as the strange fact that both genders spend 9 months or so inside the bodies of women is also conceded, making it a unique situation, not comparable at all to a vasectomy.

quote:
For that thing to happen as frequently and as successfully as planned abortion and planned birth control,  the reason has god to be better than pretty good.


But reason and explanation shouldn't be conflated.  There are explanations why people murder other people, involving endless talk about aspects of nature and nurture.  There's not likely any good reason.

quote:
If you wish to exercise any successful control over the practice of abortion, then I think you would need at a minimum, an understanding of the advantages that it provides and of the purposes it serves, and that you be willing to examine ways of providing those advantages at least as well and at least as easily as abortion does itself.


Bob, really?  Do you not think these "advantages" obvious enough?  Every one of us parents with children remember the time when we didn't have to plan for baby sitting for dates, didn't have to watch our money as carefully, didn't have to endure vigils with illness, didn't have to clean spills, change diapers, teach someone to speak and express themselves day by day, become interested in humble things you would have no interest in otherwise, etc ... etc ...  

And for the poor, these are only magnified.

But don't act as if those who disagree with you don't understand what it means to not bring a child to term.  It's nothing anyone would need to go to school for, it's what we call obvious.  Whether we can sympathize is a good question.  Whether we think these advantages justifies the legality of abortion is another.  


quote:
and that you be willing to examine ways of providing those advantages at least as well and at least as easily as abortion does itself.


Yes, I've already commented on some specifically.  Since you've remained general, I'd like to ask why you think adoptive services and foster care do not provide equal "advantages".  

quote:
  The test of that point when an appropriate alternative has been found is when the abortion numbers begin to drop and the number of people availing themselves of your solution begin to rise in proportion.  It's not easy.  It is simple.


It's not that simple Bob.  I'm sure you feel that good counselling, and building support systems is preferable to exhibiting violence and abuse in personal relationships, right?  It would therefore be ridiculous for me to suggest that the only proper way to deal with abuse is to allow the democratic process to play out (through the improvement of the deficiencies of counseling) and turn the numbers around ... and until your methods win out, without the help of any legality, we'll just have to say that violence and abuse is a viable and nearly-respectable option with its own advantages.  


Stephen
Bob K
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30 posted 03-06-2012 01:43 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


quote:


Bob:

I think the notion is that men don't actually feel the intrusion of of other people into their physical boundaries the way that I believe at least some women do.

†††† I can't tell you for sure because surity requires I be able to pass a physical exam that I simply cannot pass.††But this is what I think.††This intrusion of the one gender into the areas that the other feels is theirs by right of bodily integrity has caused massive rage going back at least as far as the Trojan war.


Stephen:
Conceded.††As long as the strange fact that both genders spend 9 months or so inside the bodies of women is also conceded, making it a unique situation, not comparable at all to a vasectomy.



     Makes sense to me.

quote:

Bob:

For that thing to happen as frequently and as successfully as planned abortion and planned birth control,††the reason has go[t] to be better than pretty good.

Stephen:

But reason and explanation shouldn't be conflated.††There are explanations why people murder other people, involving endless talk about aspects of nature and nurture.††There's not likely any good reason.




     Youíre taking me out of context here, and Iím not sure you understand my point, Stephen.

     If you want a solution to Abortion, you can have one that is a serious solution or one that is simply a pretend solution, to pick two options among many.  I would bet that you want a solution that  actually works because people turn to it out of choice automatically.  The reason that I believe this is because that is the position that abortion itself seems to occupy for many women now, and has for thousands of years.

     Yes, many people give up children for adoption.

     No, that is not the answer, though it is an answer, and not a bad partial answer.  If it was a good answer, there would be no problem for you with the number of abortions, because there wouldnít be any, would there?  The problem would be solved with the solution youíve already offered; and itís not.  More of the same might help, yes, but I think the problem is that it doesnít address some of the problems that many women have with the issue.

     What are these problems?

     Well, I think we need to ask women who are having abortions what these issues are instead of asking people who are insulted at the thought of women having abortions in the first place.  Youíre more likely to get an accurate answer.  

     Only with better information can you plan for a different outcome and have it have much chance for a different outcome.  If you keep coming up with the same old answers because you refuse to get answers from sources you donít like, youíre more or less trapped getting the same results youíve always gotten.

     I donít recall hearing you say that you love what you hear from women who want to get abortions yet, but those are really the only people who are going to be able to give you the answers that will make you happy.  And theyíre going to have to want to do something that feels like a better thing for them.

     Not for you.  Not for society.  Not for God.  Not for the police or the government.  Not for Christ.  Itís really going to have to feel like itís an answer that feels better for them.  

quote:

Bob:

If you wish to exercise any successful control over the practice of abortion, then I think you would need at a minimum, an understanding of the advantages that it provides and of the purposes it serves, and that you be willing to examine ways of providing those advantages at least as well and at least as easily as abortion does itself.

Stephen:

Bob, really?††Do you not think these "advantages" obvious enough?††Every one of us parents with children remember the time when we didn't have to plan for baby sitting for dates, didn't have to watch our money as carefully, didn't have to endure vigils with illness, didn't have to clean spills, change diapers, teach someone to speak and express themselves day by day, become interested in humble things you would have no interest in otherwise, etc ... etc
     ...††

And for the poor, these are only magnified.

But don't act as if those who disagree with you don't understand what it means to not bring a child to term.††It's nothing anyone would need to go to school for, it's what we call obvious.††Whether we can sympathize is a good question.††Whether we think these advantages justifies the legality of abortion is another.††





     Youíre in such an all fired hurry to get to your point you canít even imagine an answer other than the one youíre trying to push down my throat and the throat of what appears to be many if not most women who want to have an abortion.

     Thank you, by the way, for telling me why women want abortions.  Some of them doubtless do want abortions for exactly those reasons.  Whatís your success rate in talking women out of having abortions with a set of rationales like that, though?  95%?  100%?  Doubtless there are no women who are having abortions now that youíve explained it all to them.  Or if there are, it must be that they simply didnít understand it and you didnít explain it to them so they would really understand what it was that they were really thinking.

     Having cleared up all the potential women wishing abortions in Georgia, there is nothing left to do but take the show on the road, is there?

     Pardon my sarcasm.

     Knowing what itís like or not like to bring a child to term is really beside the point in many ways.  What is the point is what this woman is thinking and why she is thinking it.  There really are advantages to having an abortion, and there may be many commonalities from woman to woman, but each woman may in fact be different, and you donít know until you ask.


quote:
Bob:

and that you be willing to examine ways of providing those advantages at least as well and at least as easily as abortion does itself.

Stephen:

Yes, I've already commented on some specifically.††Since you've remained general, I'd like to ask why you think adoptive services and foster care do not provide equal "advantages".††



     At the risk of repeating myself, we both like the notion of adoption, but there are an awful lot more abortions than there are children given up for adoption.  If it were such a great solution, there would be no abortions and all the children that might otherwise be aborted would be adopted.  Itís not even close.  You may call that a successful solution, I would call that abortion on demand, same as usual.

     There are also some folks who believe that there are inherently racist elements in the adoption process, where white folks frequently get the pick of kids from other races.  This is an issue in the community of social workers of color, or it used to be at any rate.  There are also issues around the age of adoptees, the IQ of adoptees and the gender of adoptees.  Foster care has periodically been an issue where foster care is in some venues a way of supporting a family.  There are also different cultural values about adoptions.  In Hawaii, for example, adoption is culturally very much a part of the culture, and children will often move in and out of families in a somewhat fluid fashion because of the large extended family structures.  Itís much more rigid in some of the western european cultures.

     Basically, adoption doesnít work as well because of different cultural values on the subject and because itís not clear that it really has all that much of an effect on abortion rates anyway.  Certainly not enough for the Religious community to feel that itís a solution.

     You love it, for example, but youíd never say that itís made Abortion a non-issue for you.

     For something to be a solution to Abortion, it should really make a substantial contribution to making Abortion ago away, at least thatís what I think.  Otherwise,m youíre simply not talking about a solution, are you?  

     See the comment of mine you quote next below.

quote:
Bob:

††The test of that point when an appropriate alternative has been found is when the abortion numbers begin to drop and the number of people availing themselves of your solution begin to rise in proportion.††It's not easy.††It is simple.




quote:

It's not that simple Bob.††I'm sure you feel that good counseling, and building support systems is preferable to exhibiting violence and abuse in personal relationships, right?†



     Absolutely.


quote:

†It would therefore be ridiculous for me to suggest that the only proper way to deal with abuse is to allow the democratic process to play out (through the improvement of the deficiencies of counseling) and turn the numbers around ... and until your methods win out, without the help of any legality, we'll just have to say that violence and abuse is a viable and nearly-respectable option with its own advantages.††
[


     I simply donít follow.

     You suggest that because I believe that a proven treatment is better than an illegal activity ... what?

     Your use of the word ďthereforeĒ suggests that there is an analogy with an appropriate parallelism to follow, and yet, mirabile dictu, none does. I see the indignation, and I understand it, but the promised logic does not to my eye make an appearance.

     If I missed it, Iím sorry, and Iíd love to have it pointed out.


     Again, nobody except a sadomasochist loves abortion.  It is at best a second-best solution that women end up crowded into.  Part of the way they are crowded into abortions is failure in the system that allows women access to birth control and ďfamily planning.Ē  If we want to reduce Abortions, itís most likely that the first best interventions will have to be made on that level, and that means that we need to stop assuming that everybody is middle class and runs their lives as though they were written by the writers of Father Knows Best.

     We need to try to understand what the various models of what families are that weíre trying to live with in The United States today.  All the models are not the same.  

     We need to look at what the roll of Father is in the various family systems today.  Sometimes father is an actual single person, sometimes a father is one guy that a woman has a relationship with among several she has known over her lifetime.  Sometimes the woman is the primary caregiver, sometimes it is a series of women wit men passing in and out of the home.  There are all sorts of different notions of Family that Americans are struggling to live today, and Abortion is something that helps regulate how those families function internally and externally.  It helps place the notion of the family first, and helps define the linkages between one part of a family and other parts of a family.

     It is, as an institution and as a technique, both more than this and less than this.  Unless this aspect of Abortion is looked at and appreciated, I believe, it will remain a complete puzzle for people who dislike it on moral grounds, yet it serves an important function is marking and trimming lines of relation and affiliation that women especially would be powerless to affect otherwise.  Men are the ones who tend to be in charge of names and paternity in the more formal sense in most varieties of American culture.  With the use of the power of abortion, they can lay down their own statements about who is related to whom and who is to be, in some senses, literally cut out of the family tree.

     Thatís my thinking about the subject right now, and this is the first time Iíve had a chance to formulate the thought.

     It may be the first time Iíve seen anybody make a written note of thinking that particular thought, for that matter.

     Ha!

Stephanos
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31 posted 03-06-2012 03:13 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Bob:
quote:
No, that [adoption] is not the answer, though it is an answer, and not a bad partial answer.  If it was a good answer, there would be no problem for you with the number of abortions, because there wouldnít be any, would there?


You have to assume something, that we quite disagree on, for your statement to be anywhere near plausible:  that people will always choose the good or best when given the chance.  In such an ideal world law would not be needed, we would just offer the best, and watch the alternatives dwindle away.  But since I don't think people always choose the good, even when it's available, I think making something detrimental to human-rights illegal would be helpful in greatly reducing it, when some people are going to choose it by default as the "easiest" thing to do.  I'm not under any illusion that such measures would eliminate abortion.  But neither am I under the illusion that the measure of how good an alternative is, is how many people avail themselves of it.


quote:
More of the same might help, yes, but I think the problem is that it doesnít address some of the problems that many women have with the issue.

What are these problems?

Well, I think we need to ask women who are having abortions what these issues are instead of asking people who are insulted at the thought of women having abortions in the first place.  Youíre more likely to get an accurate answer.


Bob, you assume much.  Firstly, you assume I have to ask them myself, when they already have been asked.  I have read research, and percentages, of what post-abortive women have themselves said regarding why they chose abortions.  I can mention them.  But very few reasons, if any (and these of much smaller percentages) are not addressed or answered by the adoptive alternative.  


One study you can refer to is "Reasons U.S. Women Have Abortions: Quantitative and Qualitative Perspectives".  The following link has a short article, with a link to the larger study results inside.


http://www.guttmacher.org/media/nr/2005/09/06/index.html  


You've been conspicuously silent in giving any reasons for abortion that might not be addressed by adoption, so let me request that you provide a few, either from your own thoughts, or from all the women you've asked.

quote:
Not for you.  Not for society.  Not for God.  Not for the police or the government.  Not for Christ.  Itís really going to have to feel like itís an answer that feels better for them.


There are a lot of "nots" in that sentence!  Why such an either/ or approach?  If more are involved in this than the woman, then that tells me that her needs should definitely be included, but not exclusive.  It is curious to me that you left out the unborn human being, which is as central to this discussion, if not moreso, than the mother.  Much more of their lives are affected, don't you think?  You say it's only a potential life, but the mother's happy preferences without laws that limit or ban abortions, are only potentialities as well.  

It just doesn't stand to reason that you would make one human consideration supreme (which doesn't jeopardize life, and which I've never denied should be included), to the exclusion of all others.

quote:
There really are advantages to having an abortion, and there may be many commonalities from woman to woman, but each woman may in fact be different, and you donít know until you ask.


It's been asked.  So, Bob, what are the advantages to having an abortion over an adoption that are not trivial?  I'm sure, though you have a Y-Chromosome, you could at least imagine one for the sake of discussion.  Either that, or derive one from all the women who have been asked for research purposes.  

You're insistence upon a reason from me (or from women in Georgia?), that you yourself cannot provide or even conjure, is a smoke-screen.  If not, I'd like to resume the discussion surrounding such reasons, when you get the time.


quote:
If it were such a great solution, there would be no abortions and all the children that might otherwise be aborted would be adopted.  Itís not even close.


It is a great solution.  It is also a solution which requires more effort.  One must actually go through childbirth.  It is not financially burdensome, probably about the same as abortion, though I haven't financially compared the procedures of child-birth with abortion.  

Again, yours is the fallacy of thinking that the goodness of a solution correlates with how many people avail themselves of it.  I'm sure spousal abuse is far greater than a loving participation in counseling ... does that mean that such counseling is not a good alternative, and that striking my wife should be legalized, since people will naturally choose the better course of action?  


The bottom line is, as long as dehumanizing rhetoric is used in speaking of an unborn underdeveloped human being, and that women are persuaded into thinking that abortion is akin to an appendectomy, why would they choose something that requires more time and effort?  It wouldn't matter, if such were true.  But if such isn't exactly true, as the science of embryology leads us to believe, then adoption is the best choice even though not being the easiest choice, and not having the advantage of being an out-patient procedure one could have in the morning, and go to work the next day, or go shopping at the mall.  


quote:
There are also some folks who believe that there are inherently racist elements in the adoption process, where white folks frequently get the pick of kids from other races.  This is an issue in the community of social workers of color, or it used to be at any rate.


Can anyone say "Red Herring"?  

As the Caucasian father of two Chinese children, and as someone who knows a friend who has adopted a child of another race, I can tell you that none will object to these children being adopted into loving families, who are not racist themselves.

quote:
Basically, adoption doesnít work as well because of different cultural values on the subject and because itís not clear that it really has all that much of an effect on abortion rates anyway.


Cultural values can be changed, as they are not absolutes.  

And there would be no way of telling whether or not it has an effect on the abortion rate.  One thing is very obvious however ... every woman who gave up her child for adoption could have chosen abortion instead.  And if abortion were more restricted, and adoption more promoted, then there is little reasonable doubt that the abortion rate would fall, and adoptions would rise.  


quote:
You love it, for example, but youíd never say that itís made Abortion a non-issue for you.


Sounds like a non-sequitur.  I'm not female, so personally, abortion is a non-issue for me.  I don't think abortion is ethical or moral, so personally abortion is a non-issue for me.  I've never felt the need to get rid of a child, or had the feeling that I couldn't raise a child, so personally abortion is a non-issue for me.  But abortions still happen, in a pretty much on-demand fashion (though thankfully laws have limited this), so socially abortion is still an issue for me.  

My argument is that adoption can make abortion a non-necessity for many women who might think it to be a necessity.  

What these facts have to do with your above sentence, I cannot tell.


quote:
For something to be a solution to Abortion, it should really make a substantial contribution to making Abortion ago away, at least thatís what I think.  Otherwise,m youíre simply not talking about a solution, are you?


No, not a total solution.  I think on-demand abortion should be illegal.  So adoption is merely an alternative to abortion, not a total solution.  


quote:
It's not that simple Bob.  I'm sure you feel that good counseling, and building support systems is preferable to exhibiting violence and abuse in personal relationships, right?

It would therefore be ridiculous for me to suggest that the only proper way to deal with abuse is to allow the democratic process to play out (through the improvement of the deficiencies of counseling) and turn the numbers around ... and until your methods win out, without the help of any legality, we'll just have to say that violence and abuse is a viable and nearly-respectable option with its own advantages.


My point is, since you obviously think counseling is a good alternative to violence, and don't feel that its value is diminished by the many many people who choose to partake in violence rather than trouble with counseling, you understand the position of believing in a good alternative, and also of seeing the necessity for legal restrictions on those who will not choose the better on their own.  

That position which you doubtless hold, in essence, is not different than my own regarding abortion.  
quote:
Abortion is something that helps regulate how those families function internally and externally.  It helps place the notion of the family first, and helps define the linkages between one part of a family and other parts of a family.


Only in the sense of removing a person from the "family" ... and other alternatives do that just as well.  Abortion is not unique in that role, except in its ease and "convenience" and out-patient status.

quote:
Men are the ones who tend to be in charge of names and paternity in the more formal sense in most varieties of American culture.  With the use of the power of abortion, they can lay down their own statements about who is related to whom and who is to be, in some senses, literally cut out of the family tree.


Abortion as a feminist backlash against patriarchal domination of names!  I see.  Only, the mother gets to actually terminate the life, rather than just determine the name, just to show she won't be pushed around.  Sounds reasonable.


Stephen
Bob K
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32 posted 03-06-2012 04:52 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K

     I posted something here which I reposted another place.

     If you hadn't seen this note, you'd probably never have known.


Stephanos
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since 07-31-2000
Posts 3496
Statesboro, GA, USA


33 posted 03-07-2012 09:41 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Sorry to say, I still don't know ... or I don't know where it is?  Could you be specific?  

thanks,

Stephen
 
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