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Author Topic: What has happened to us?  (Read 10983 times)

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Online Oniya

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #50 on: September 06, 2011, 07:32:27 AM »
Masculinity is not analogous to misogyny. I hope we can all agree on that?

Quoted for emphasis.  When I was in college (I went to a 'women's college'), one of the administrators taught a class on Issues of Women and Leadership.  I had a friend who took the class the year before me, and I found out that the course was horribly biased to the extremes: women were either supposed to trample over men on their way to the top, or take a completely supportive role to ensure their husbands' successes.  The middle ground of working alongside men wasn't even an option.

I arranged a class conflict.

Offline Torch

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #51 on: September 06, 2011, 08:09:29 AM »
  pregnancy is a dangerous, painful and life changing process for the woman.

Could we not paint pregnancy with the same brush as throwing oneself on a landmine in Afghanistan?

Pregnancy is a normal, healthy state for a woman with a working uterus. Her body is doing what it is designed to do. Let's not exaggerate, please.

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #52 on: September 06, 2011, 08:17:41 AM »
It does require a bit more commitment on the woman's part than on the man's.  I suspect that if both parties had to go through nine months of symptoms, we'd have fewer people demanding that every conception be carried to term.  (We'd probably also have a lot more men insisting on birth control.)

Offline Trieste

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #53 on: September 06, 2011, 08:24:19 AM »
Yeah, biologically noooot quite a normal, healthy state for a woman with a working uterus (and that's ignoring the fact that uteruses and hormone levels seem to play by their own rules a lot). There is a significant risk involved, and a good amount of discomfort if you have a normal, healthy pregnancy. Now think about how likely it is that someone who cannot afford birth control is going to have a normal, healthy pregnancy.

While it's certainly not the same as throwing oneself on a bomb (really, Torch?  ::)) it does remain true that the female in a relationship bears the burden of child-bearing more than the male. I have to agree with above posters that I will be all about equal consent laws for men and women in the case of abortion - when it's possible for men to take on the embryo and carry it to term.

Offline Torch

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #54 on: September 06, 2011, 08:59:49 AM »
Yeah, biologically noooot quite a normal, healthy state for a woman with a working uterus (and that's ignoring the fact that uteruses and hormone levels seem to play by their own rules a lot). There is a significant risk involved, and a good amount of discomfort if you have a normal, healthy pregnancy. Now think about how likely it is that someone who cannot afford birth control is going to have a normal, healthy pregnancy.

Sorry, I have to disagree. Especially with the "risk" part. Ten times the number of women sustain death or injurious complications from automobile accidents than women who carry a pregnancy to term. Should we then ban women from driving?  Yes, I know, sounds silly and irrational, but tossing around a term like "dangerous" when referring to pregnancy is just as silly and irrational. A normal, healthy pregnancy is not in any way, shape, or form, dangerous. Inconvenient? Certainly. Painful? It can be, although pain is subjective, and as a person who has given birth twice without the benefit of so much as a Tylenol, I can state unequivocally that labor was far less painful than the bout of appendicitis I endured when I was in college.

But dangerous? No. Just....no.

Quote
While it's certainly not the same as throwing oneself on a bomb (really, Torch?  ::)) it does remain true that the female in a relationship bears the burden of child-bearing more than the male. I have to agree with above posters that I will be all about equal consent laws for men and women in the case of abortion - when it's possible for men to take on the embryo and carry it to term.

Oh, I'm not disagreeing on that point at all, in fact I am in total agreement. But equating pregnancy to a "dangerous" condition is not the way to prove that point. Because if we normalize pregnancy as "dangerous", then we slide on a slippery slope to taking away a woman's choice to carry on her pregnancy as she sees fit, her choice to birth as she sees fit, her choice to choose her healthcare provider as she deems appropriate...because of the *gasp* DANGER!!!
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 12:01:45 PM by Torch »

Offline Trieste

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #55 on: September 06, 2011, 09:10:35 AM »
Not so, although it's possible that you're taking it in a more alarmist manner than I meant it. Pregnancy is dangerous, just as surgery is dangerous, just as, yes, driving is dangerous, and just as taking strong medications is dangerous. Does it mean we should restrict choices? Of course not. However, it does mean that women - and men - need to be made aware of their methods of preventing, managing, and terminating it. As with any medical procedure, the result of calling pregnancy dangerous is not to scare or limit choices, but to stress the importance of information and education. It is our ethical responsibility to make sure our young men and women are educated and can make informed decisions.

It's not an attempt to prove the point that women are more affected by pregnancy than men, because that is a fact that need not be proven. Someone who denies it has no idea what he or she is talking about. However, the original point was that pregnancy is "hardly an irrevocable change" and that's a generalization that should not be made.

Having explained myself as well as I can and, in the process, moved pretty far off-topic, I'm going to pretty much have to agree to disagree on this one and refrain from hijacking further, though.

Offline Zakharra

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #56 on: September 06, 2011, 10:27:59 AM »
Sorry, I have to disagree. Especially with the "risk" part. A woman is far more likely to sustain death or injurious complications from an automobile accident than from carrying a pregnancy to term. Should we then ban women from driving?  Yes, I know, sounds silly and irrational, but tossing around a term like "dangerous" when referring to pregnancy is just as silly and irrational. A normal, healthy pregnancy is not in any way, shape, or form, dangerous. Inconvenient? Certainly. Painful? It can be, although pain is subjective, and as a person who has given birth twice without the benefit of so much as a Tylenol, I can state unequivocally that labor was far less painful than the bout of appendicitis I endured when I was in college.

But dangerous? No. Just....no.

Oh, I'm not disagreeing on that point at all, in fact I am in total agreement. But equating pregnancy to a "dangerous" condition is not the way to prove that point. Because if we normalize pregnancy as "dangerous", then we slide on a slippery slope to taking away a woman's choice to carry on her pregnancy as she sees fit, her choice to birth as she sees fit, her choice to choose her healthcare provider as she deems appropriate...because of the *gasp* DANGER!!!

UUmm.. for the longest time, pregnancy was about the most dangerous thing a woman could have happen to her. A LOT of women died in childbirth, as did children. A woman was more likely to die in childbirth than to pretty much anything else. So don't say it's not dangerous. Even now with modern medicine, it's not an easy task for a woman to undergo.  Is it easier than it was 100 years ago?Yes, but it's still not easy.  To dismiss it as not being dangerous is ignoring the millions of women who have died in childbirth related problems and the women even now that have problems with it.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 10:36:50 AM by Zakharra »

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #57 on: September 06, 2011, 10:47:53 AM »
While it's certainly not the same as throwing oneself on a bomb (really, Torch?  ::)) it does remain true that the female in a relationship bears the burden of child-bearing more than the male. I have to agree with above posters that I will be all about equal consent laws for men and women in the case of abortion - when it's possible for men to take on the embryo and carry it to term.

Would you support them instead if it becomes possible not if the burden was added to men, but if it was removed from women? Etopic male human pregnancy is, by totally unscientific research, likely impossible without significant surgical modifications and extremely likely to kill the host, but thy're actually making (slow) progress on construction of artifical wombs - more than they are for male-born fetuses, at least.

Offline Vekseid

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #58 on: September 06, 2011, 10:56:31 AM »
Sorry, I have to disagree. Especially with the "risk" part. A woman is far more likely to sustain death or injurious complications from an automobile accident than from carrying a pregnancy to term. Should we then ban women from driving?  Yes, I know, sounds silly and irrational, but tossing around a term like "dangerous" when referring to pregnancy is just as silly and irrational. A normal, healthy pregnancy is not in any way, shape, or form, dangerous. Inconvenient? Certainly. Painful? It can be, although pain is subjective, and as a person who has given birth twice without the benefit of so much as a Tylenol, I can state unequivocally that labor was far less painful than the bout of appendicitis I endured when I was in college.

On a lark, I just ran the math for this.

17 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in the United States, as of the most recent estimates.

11 auto deaths per 100,000 citizens of the United States.

Those numbers used to be reversed.

Being pregnant is now 50% more likely to get you killed than your traveling habits, in the United States.

Online Oniya

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #59 on: September 06, 2011, 10:57:59 AM »
Just as a bit of medical trivia - if the embryo implants in the right place (i.e., not just outside the uterus, but in specific areas of the abdominal cavity), there have been very rare cases of ectopic pregnancy in women that have been brought to term and delivered by modified C-section.  Some attach to the outside of the uterus, or to benign fibroid tumors, which doesn't help the 'seahorse' situation, but one in particular had attached to the omentum (a layer of tissue that provides blood to the intestines), which is notable as it's a structure that both men and women have.

Offline Caela

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #60 on: September 06, 2011, 10:59:46 AM »
Sorry, I have to disagree. Especially with the "risk" part. A woman is far more likely to sustain death or injurious complications from an automobile accident than from carrying a pregnancy to term. Should we then ban women from driving?  Yes, I know, sounds silly and irrational, but tossing around a term like "dangerous" when referring to pregnancy is just as silly and irrational. A normal, healthy pregnancy is not in any way, shape, or form, dangerous. Inconvenient? Certainly. Painful? It can be, although pain is subjective, and as a person who has given birth twice without the benefit of so much as a Tylenol, I can state unequivocally that labor was far less painful than the bout of appendicitis I endured when I was in college.

But dangerous? No. Just....no.

Oh, I'm not disagreeing on that point at all, in fact I am in total agreement. But equating pregnancy to a "dangerous" condition is not the way to prove that point. Because if we normalize pregnancy as "dangerous", then we slide on a slippery slope to taking away a woman's choice to carry on her pregnancy as she sees fit, her choice to birth as she sees fit, her choice to choose her healthcare provider as she deems appropriate...because of the *gasp* DANGER!!!

To say pregnancy, and childbirth, aren't dangerous is disingenuous at best. I work in a Labor and Delivery unit and see firsthand the complications that can come with pregnancy. Do they happen to most? No, of course not. Most pregnancies fall in the mild - severely uncomfortable range not into dangerous territory but you never what you're going to have when you get pregnant.  Modern medicine has made it safer and so that we have treatments now for many complications that used to kill both mother and child but you can never make it entirely "safe" and I've had to help in complications ranging from fetal death, to post Cesarean hysterectomies, to hemorrhages etc.

None of that means you shouldn't get to determine your own care (it does mean some healthcare professionals may think some of you choices are moronic but we won't say that to your face) up to, and including, having your child at home with a midwife if that's what you want. Women have been giving birth for millions of years, it's something our bodies are designed to do, but some women's bodies to it better than others and a woman should keep her pregnancy history (if she has one) or that of her mother and grandmother in mind when she is making those choices.

Oh, just a random FYI, if you show up at the hospital with a six page birth-plan, expect to get a c-section, Murphey's Law just loves to mess with those!

Offline Torch

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #61 on: September 06, 2011, 11:07:07 AM »
Being pregnant is now 50% more likely to get you killed than your traveling habits, in the United States.

According to the CDC, the leading causes of death for women of childbearing age are unintentional injuries, cancer, heart disease, stroke, homicide, suicide, and HIV.

Maternal death from complications of pregnancy is less than 3% in any age group.

This is from the 2006 Mortality tables, the first one I could pull up. I'm sure there are newer ones, but I doubt the numbers have changed all that much in five years.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 11:09:13 AM by Torch »

Offline Torch

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #62 on: September 06, 2011, 11:16:05 AM »
To say pregnancy, and childbirth, aren't dangerous is disingenuous at best. I work in a Labor and Delivery unit and see firsthand the complications that can come with pregnancy. Do they happen to most? No, of course not. Most pregnancies fall in the mild - severely uncomfortable range not into dangerous territory

That's really my point. Taking the position that EACH and EVERY pregnancy is dangerous is inaccurate.


Offline Vekseid

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #63 on: September 06, 2011, 11:16:43 AM »
According to the CDC, the leading causes of death for women of childbearing age are unintentional injuries, cancer, heart disease, stroke, homicide, suicide, and HIV.

Maternal death from complications of pregnancy is less than 3% in any age group.

This is from the 2006 Mortality tables, the first one I could pull up. I'm sure there are newer ones, but I doubt the numbers have changed all that much in five years.

You made a specific claim:

Quote
A woman is far more likely to sustain death or injurious complications from an automobile accident than from carrying a pregnancy to term.

This is, as of roughly 2009, completely false.

Offline Caela

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #64 on: September 06, 2011, 11:24:04 AM »
That's really my point. Taking the position that EACH and EVERY pregnancy is dangerous is inaccurate.

Each one carries a certain level of risk. For most, that risk comes to nothing. The problem is that a lot of the more dangerous risks don't show up until a woman is in labor which then gets her rushed back for an emergency c-section which is major abdominal surgery and carries it's own risks. To not treat every pregnancy as if it could be dangerous, is to make light of something that can, in a worst case scenario, actually kill you. Is it likely to? No, I'll admit that, but just disregarding the dangers inherent in pregnancy and childbirth simply because they're "natural" is as foolish as trying to make it sound like every pregnancy WILL kill you. Both are extreme attitudes that ignore the truth.

Offline Jude

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #65 on: September 06, 2011, 11:32:31 AM »
I'm having a hard time finding those stats Vekseid.  Could you cite your resources?

EDIT:  Keep in mind Torch, that even if only 1% of women who give birth die in a year, you have to normalize that for the percentage of women that give birth in a year.  I'm willing to bet fewer than 20% of women do this, so if 1% of women die and 20% of women give birth, then 5% of women that give birth die.

The percentage of women who drive is much higher than the percentage of women who give birth, so you can't really access risk in pure percentages related to the general population.

I'm still agnostic on which is greater until I see the stats for myself, though.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 11:36:48 AM by Jude »

Offline Torch

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #66 on: September 06, 2011, 11:33:38 AM »
You made a specific claim:

This is, as of roughly 2009, completely false.

Not false.

Less than 600 women in the US die from childbirth complications every year - CDC, National Center for Health Statistics

Approximately 5000 women of childbearing age die in automobile fatalities every year - NHTSA


Offline Vekseid

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #67 on: September 06, 2011, 11:40:47 AM »
You made a statistical claim, not a numeric one. Nearly every woman in the United States has to deal with road traffic, from birth to nursing home. Not every woman in the United States is pregnant.

Offline Torch

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #68 on: September 06, 2011, 11:49:55 AM »
You made a statistical claim, not a numeric one.

Ahh, I see what you mean. I'll amend my post.

Numerically, the number of women in the US of childbearing age who die or are injured in automobile accidents is ten times the number of women in the US who die in childbirth.

Offline Torch

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #69 on: September 06, 2011, 11:58:40 AM »
I'm having a hard time finding those stats Vekseid.  Could you cite your resources?

EDIT:  Keep in mind Torch, that even if only 1% of women who give birth die in a year, you have to normalize that for the percentage of women that give birth in a year.  I'm willing to bet fewer than 20% of women do this, so if 1% of women die and 20% of women give birth, then 5% of women that give birth die.

The percentage of women who drive is much higher than the percentage of women who give birth, so you can't really access risk in pure percentages related to the general population.

I'm still agnostic on which is greater until I see the stats for myself, though.

Yeah, I know, I've been trying to find a good table that explains rates of pregnancy by age, but even the one I can find from Guttmacher is from 2002. :P The rates for women ages 20-34 (under 20 and over 35 fall off the charts dramatically) average out to about 25%.

Offline Zakharra

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #70 on: September 06, 2011, 01:02:50 PM »

Numerically, the number of women in the US of childbearing age who die or are injured in automobile accidents is ten times the number of women in the US who die in childbirth.

 That's true, but the number of women pregnant is what you need to take from to get the % that die to childbirth complications.

Offline CmdrRenegade

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #71 on: September 06, 2011, 02:02:15 PM »
I agree with you to a certain extent.  The problem I have with the whole double standard thing is that it requires a guy to be honest about what his intentions were when he went to bed with a woman.  Plenty of unmarried couples plan children only for the father to get cold feet once his girlfriend's lost her figure and he's about to be eyeball deep in nappies.  I think that many men are already feckless enough without giving them the option to sign away all responsibility the moment they get buyer's remorse.  There are plenty of men also, who will do anything to avoid barrier contraception because it detracts from their enjoyment.

Then there's the issue of consent and cases where consent may have been dubious, e.g. following a drunken one night stand when a woman may have been taken advantage of only to wind up pregnant, not to mention victims of rape and/or domestic abuse.  Or where a married man is sleeping with a mistress who believes him to be single.  Teenage girls would pay a high price for a failure of contraception, whereas teenage guys would have no incentive to take responsibility for contraception and use condoms.

Not every woman can have an abortion and live with herself afterwards.  It's against many women's religious beliefs.  Adoption is also a hard choice to make and to see through.

I do of course agree that many women seek to entrap men and that many women believe any sperm donor should be made to haemorrhage cash.  I don't condone that behaviour but neither do I think there are enough honourable men for such a system of signing away rights to work.  You wouldn't have much more than the word of a guy regarding whether a pregnancy was the result of a one night stand, brief fling, longer relationship or whether it was in fact planned.

So I admire your independence and your decision not to burden someone who clearly had no interest in fatherhood but I don't see how it could ever really become legally workable for a guy to sign away parental responsibility on a whim.

I completely understand your need for the father not to have any rights over your daughter but at the same time, I wouldn't want to see a system where once a father signed away his rights there was no way back from that.  There are few enough men with an interest in raising children from previous relationships.  I think there would definitely have to be a process through which he could apply for visitation, on the understanding that he would have to start supporting the child financially.

Sorry to derail but I feel I have to answer this.  If a man had made a similar generalization about women, there would be many women saying that it's unfair to women as a whole because not all women are like that (to henceforth be referred to as NAWALT).  I can simply respond with NAMALT (Not All Men Are Like That), but that's not really a sufficient argument. 

Reagan has mentioned how she would be reluctant to allow a man to sign away his rights and obligations to the child.  She is saying that a "paper abortion" would leave a woman too vulnerable to male caprice.  The thing is that we men would in turn like to be protected against female caprice.  As the law stands right now, any male is vulnerable to whatever decision she chooses to make.  If you want to know more check out these links that speak on it more eloquently than I can.

http://www.salon.com/life/feature/2000/10/19/mens_choice

http://www.salon.com/life/mothers/2001/02/06/farrell

If a man and a woman are married, it's a very reasonable assumption that they one day want to have at least one child.  Outside of marriage, it gets more complicated.  Both people are likely having sex for the thrill and pleasure of it only to discover that whatever birth control method they were using had failed.  Federal and state law as it is now has stated that a man lost the right to decide for himself to be a father the moment he engaged in sexual activity, vaginal or not.  Whatever his intentions or state were is considered irrelevant. 

A 12 year old male who has sex with an older female (age of consent varies between 14-17 by state) is considered a victim of statutory rape, but is still held liable for child support if the act resulted in a pregnancy.  A woman who has sex with a drunk/unconscious man has committed rape, but said man will still be held liable for child support from the resulting crime.  They have no way out and the woman and the courts have the full authority to any and all of his assets for "the best interests of the child".  This can range anywhere from 35%-60% of his income and the courts will take more if she demands it, regardless of what her true intentions are.  If the man can't pay, he will be thrown in jail and have all his legal privileges taken away. 

Why would any woman do such a horrible thing? She wants to tie the man to her, she wants the income she thinks child support will bring her, or most likely, she just really wants a child and doesn't care how she gets it. 

My point is that the law still assumes that women are all innocent things that will be taken advantage by evil men out for nothing but a thrill.  In this modern age, that simply isn't true.  Everyone knows how reproductive biology works.  Yes it takes "two to tango", but allowing only one to decide how to end the dance isn't legal equality.  Men also have to deal with the emotional pain of knowing a life they could have raised was snuffed out at an abortion clinic or is off somewhere else being raised by someone else.  The woman has no obligation to consider him for these choices either. 

My point is that just like women don't want to be treated as dispensers of food and sex, men don't want to be treated as dispensers of sperm and money.  That is why I would support a 'paper abortion'.  Some of you may ask,'What about the child? What about what's best for the child?' My answer, as harsh as it is, is that it's irrelevant.  If this question is not allowed to be asked when a woman heads to the abortion clinic, the adoption agency, or the hospital to give birth than by fair and equitable ethical standards it should not be asked to men.  Equality, for those who can handle it, can be incredibly harsh. 

That's my two cents.

Offline meikle

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #72 on: September 06, 2011, 03:00:10 PM »
You know what else isn't equal?

Anatomy.

Abortion rights aren't about taking choices away from men.  They're about guaranteeing female biological autonomy.

I'm not sure where the idea that a woman can put a kid up for adoption without the father's input comes from.  I'm fairly certain that unless you don't pursue your rights as a parent, if a mother wants to put a child up for adoption, the father can choose not to terminate his rights as father.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 03:08:58 PM by meikle »

Offline Sure

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #73 on: September 06, 2011, 03:02:17 PM »
I believe we're talking about a strawman anyway: The assertion as I understand it is not that men should have a say in whether women get an abortion but rather that women should not have a say in whether the man takes on a fatherly role. It should be his choice to reject it (for the same window a woman has to reject it), and he should be able to do it without her consent. To argue against this is to effectively argue men should have less legal rights than women, as they currently do.

By the way, don't just talk about deadbeat dads, please: Non-Custodial Women are significantly worse in virtually every child support metric by percentage, yet by using the term Deadbeat Dads you are implicitly excusing them and implying the problem is inherently male. There are about ten times more men than women paying child support, but that doesn't change the fact Deadbeat Moms need to be cracked down on as well.

You know what else isn't equal?

Anatomy.

Pithy and completely irrelevant to the fact you are asserting men should have less rights than women, that men should be forced to support financially a decision he had no hand in making.

Offline meikle

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #74 on: September 06, 2011, 03:09:36 PM »
Nope.  Men should have rights to their anatomy, as well.

Both parents should be responsible to a child when it is born.  That the decision to carry a child to term comes down to the mother (remember, bodily autonomy) is just a function of anatomy and nature.

Any time a child is born out of a consensual sex act, that is a decision that a man had a hand in making.

Neither men nor women have the right to 'opt out' of caring for a child, except insofar as they might abandon the child at a hospital or put them up for adoption, which are cases in which both parents have the right to make a choice (and must make that decision in unison.)
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 03:16:40 PM by meikle »