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Author Topic: Abortion  (Read 12176 times)

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Offline Torch

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #175 on: October 11, 2009, 10:37:44 PM »
All fathers, biological or otherwise, can relinquish their parental rights. All it usually requires is an affidavit of waiver, which usually has to be brought before a judge who signs off on it, and there all responsibilities end, financial and otherwise.

However, in a few states, I know Illinois is one of them, a man can, under certain circumstances, be forced to continue to pay child support even after rights have been terminated. But those are handled on a case by case basis. For the most part, once parental rights have been extinguished, all responsibilities by the father are ended.

Offline Kotah

Re: Abortion
« Reply #176 on: October 12, 2009, 12:03:53 AM »
In Illinois, you can be forced to pay unless you relinquish your parental rights. This can happen before birth. Unless you are married to the woman at any time during the child's conception or life. Men  can also refuse to have their names applied to birth certificates, again unless you are married.

It all comes down to if you are married or not in this my beloved state.

Offline Kate

Re: Abortion
« Reply #177 on: October 12, 2009, 09:13:02 AM »
This does concern the father's rights if the mother wants to proceed with the birth but the farther is against it.

Offline MercyfulFate

Re: Abortion
« Reply #178 on: October 12, 2009, 06:34:05 PM »

To Those in Favor of Allowing Abortion:
- What about people who use abortion as birth control?
- If you are okay with terminating the life because it's "on someone else's property" and "it isn't human yet"; how do you reconcile this with your view on animal rights? (i.e. fetus = not human = animal = animal murder)
- Do you believe in a soul?  If so, how can you know the unborn child doesn't have a soul?
- Why should the woman get the decision solely on whether or not to abort the child, when the man is equally responsible if she chooses to keep it?
- Typical trite "woman's body" arguments aside (which are more of a slogan than an actual justification); do you believe abortion is justified based on the fetus not being self-aware (or conscious, sentient, etc.) yet?  And if so, what about people who suffer from certain mental illness or reach a certain degree of senility?  Is it possible to support Abortion and not Euthanasia?

Abortion as birth control? I'd need to see real life examples, because it sounds like one of those things that barely ever happens and is blown into the end of the world. If it does, it's messed up, but it's not like most women would see it as contrite as ordering drive through.

The fetus isn't a living thing, so reconciling it with animals and how I fee about them doesn't really fit. It's not about it being non-human, it's about whether it's living at all.

Soul? Can't say

The woman is the one responsible for it, men don't really have the right to make the decision unless she chooses otherwise. That's like saying women should have as much say in a man's vasectomy.

Abortion is justified in cases of massive brain damage, retardation, etc. in my mind. Call it callous, but...

Offline Kenshin

Re: Abortion
« Reply #179 on: October 12, 2009, 07:25:45 PM »
-People who use abortion as a type of birth control piss me off. However it should not be the government’s decision whether or not they should be able to have an abortion. There is a problem also with having many abortions as it cause issues with the body that can be fatal, such as cervical cancer.
-I am not an animal rights activist in any way; I enjoy meat and don’t see why people who don’t eat it don’t. However I suppose I do understand, killing an animal is killing what is known as a persons in philosophy, which means they feel pain and pleasure, respond to pain and pleasure and more complicated stuff that I don’t know. A fetus is a non person, doesn’t feel pain or pleasure, doesn’t react to them etc. It is an embryo, not a living breathing being yet.
-I don’t know what to believe about souls, if they exist or not. What I do believe is if we have a soul, it goes back into the world. Atomism I think it’s called.
-I don’t know how to answer that because it doesn’t seem right. I think you mean why should the women only have the right to abort the fetus and not the man? Even so, I don’t know how to answer that.
-I do not believe that abortion is right nor wrong, nor is it good or bad..at least not set as one or the other. It depends, and with that I will say that it is justified on several things, like the fetus not being a “persons” yet and the circumstances of the reason. I also support Euthanasia, although I do not know how it would be acceptable. Maybe if there was an extreme case of something horrible. If life is more painful to live than to rest perhaps dying would be better if not being about to be treated?

Offline SleepyWei

Re: Abortion
« Reply #180 on: October 12, 2009, 07:36:58 PM »
Quote
-People who use abortion as a type of birth control piss me off. However it should not be the government’s decision whether or not they should be able to have an abortion. There is a problem also with having many abortions as it cause issues with the body that can be fatal, such as cervical cancer.

When was there even a mention that it was the government's decision?

Quote
-I don’t know how to answer that because it doesn’t seem right. I think you mean why should the women only have the right to abort the fetus and not the man? Even so, I don’t know how to answer that.

He meant shouldn't the man get a equal say in aborting the child if he gets the woman pregnant.




Offline Trieste

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #181 on: October 12, 2009, 07:52:17 PM »
I really think the 'woman who uses abortions wantonly as birth control' is about as much of a myth as the so-called Welfare Queen who serves as the spectre of welfare reform (and those opposed to over-reform). I would need to see hard stats from a reputable source to believe she exists.

Offline Serephino

Re: Abortion
« Reply #182 on: October 12, 2009, 09:05:15 PM »
I do know someone who, though she didn't go to a clinic for an abortion, she'd do it herself.  How do I explain this....  Basicly, if she had any kind of inkling she was pregnant she'd go on a drinking binge to get rid of it.  Now this girl has been a heavy drinker since she graduated high school and has a high tolerance.  She'd drink until she made herself sick.  That pisses me off. 

I also know someone who was raped at 11 and got pregnant.  Her father, a hardcore Mormon, made her carry it to term.  He also wanted the baby to go to the father, who was a friend of his.  I guess every individual is different, but she had no ill feelings toward the baby.  In fact, she somehow made sure the baby went up for adoption to save him from the hardcore Mormon lifestyle.  The rape itself affected her, but carrying the baby didn't.  She even said something to me about trying to find him to meet him when he turns 18.  She can't before that because she's worried of what her father might do if he finds out where the kid is.

I've been raped myself.  I'm not really sure how I feel about it though.  It happened while I was drunk and passed out.  The only reason I know it happened is because one of the guy's friends who walked in on it had a guilty conscience and told me months later.  So I can say that if you have no memory of the event it's just confusing.  I do feel violated, but not much other than that.  Maybe I'm strange...  I just can't get all that upset over something I can't remember.  Obviously I didn't get pregnant.  I'm not sure how I would feel if I did though.  I've been thinking about it all day and I honestly can't answer that.   



Offline Kate

Re: Abortion
« Reply #183 on: October 13, 2009, 05:22:05 AM »
"A fetus is a non person, doesn’t feel pain or pleasure, doesn’t react to them etc. It is an embryo, not a living breathing being yet." - Arcaina

A - like I i do beleive that abortion is ok. Don't be quick to justify it in terms that are not mandatory for your reasons though, as a view like this may cause those to choose to go full term if it does experience pain during a procedure.

I think that late in the pregnancy it would be able to experience pain, for example if a new born is sleeping and i go up to it and crush its foot and walk away chances are its crying, if i did so hours before hand in the womb chances are it would feel something very similar, birthing doesn't suddenly flush it with a new-wiring in the brain for that matter.

Late term abortions I do beleive should assume it can feel pain and procedures should be adopted that are painless (ie lethal injection with something pleasant .. then do whatever you want etc)

Is abortion a form of birth control ?

In short ... yes, by definition as it can control what one births.

Is it one that woman use as a STANDARD form of birth control ?

No.

Why ?

Even if they cared nothing for the child, its an unpleasant experience psychologically, expensive and dangerous, for these reasons it is used as a last resort
 

Offline MercyfulFate

Re: Abortion
« Reply #184 on: October 13, 2009, 01:07:00 PM »
I really think the 'woman who uses abortions wantonly as birth control' is about as much of a myth as the so-called Welfare Queen who serves as the spectre of welfare reform (and those opposed to over-reform). I would need to see hard stats from a reputable source to believe she exists.

Exactly, the welfare thing almost never exists yet people act like it's a rampant problem. Same with the abortion stuff.

Although there are women that give birth, dump the baby in a trash can and go back to the prom and dance.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #185 on: October 13, 2009, 01:11:18 PM »
Yes, but ... the reason it gets on the news when it happens is because it's unusual. You don't see births on the news every day - a new baby isn't shocking, isn't news. Unusual things are. Most people would never conceive of doing that. I don't understand why 'most people' (if you want, you can try to throw 'reasonable' in there, but most people aren't 100% reasonable) can't be factored into the equation instead of the wackos. You don't regulate documentaries based on Michael Moore, and you don't regulate abortion based on That Woman.

Offline MercyfulFate

Re: Abortion
« Reply #186 on: October 13, 2009, 01:45:16 PM »
Yes, but ... the reason it gets on the news when it happens is because it's unusual. You don't see births on the news every day - a new baby isn't shocking, isn't news. Unusual things are. Most people would never conceive of doing that. I don't understand why 'most people' (if you want, you can try to throw 'reasonable' in there, but most people aren't 100% reasonable) can't be factored into the equation instead of the wackos. You don't regulate documentaries based on Michael Moore, and you don't regulate abortion based on That Woman.

Well said.

Offline Salomé

Re: Abortion
« Reply #187 on: October 13, 2009, 06:20:48 PM »
Jouzinka, I'm going to use what you posted as a launching pad for what I have to say. :-)
"Both you and Odin are talking about sacrifices in one way or another, but truth be told the issue can hardly ever really touch you, because you are both men and in any case you can always turn on the heel and walk away, while pregnancy or abortion is an issue that (theoretically) touches every woman who can't run from the responsibility."

The whole "abortion doesn't concern men" argument only works in a limited way because you're already arguing from the implicit assumption that abortion is not infanticide. If abortion were morally equivalent to infanticide--and many of those opposed to abortion argue from this point--then the issue would be less about pregnancy and unfairness than about the preservation of human life.(Yes, it's unfair that the preservation of human life must involve inconveniencing a woman for 9 months, probably more--but it's not enough justification for abortion, IF abortion = murder).
Infanticide is an issue that touches everyone, regardless of whether they can or cannot have babies.

Of course, I'm not necessarily arguing that abortion = infanticide.

But I do think that many of the disagreements stem from the fact that people argue with fundamentally different assumptions about what abortion is. Sorry to state the obvious, but many people who are arguing "pro-choice" seem to take it for granted that aborting a fetus is completely different and separate from murder. There are many people still believe that abortion is essentially infanticide.

If you consider this fundamental difference in approach, then you can knock out all the "superficial" arguments concerning women's rights and rape. As callous as it sounds, if abortion, measured on some imaginary scale of morality, were equal to murder, then even if the fetus were a product of a rape, the "right" thing would be to allow it to live. Even if the mother's life was at stake, if the fetus' life were deemed to be equal to the life of a mother, it would be one life against another--not a simple one way choice. And of course, aborting a fetus simply because it might be inconvenient would be out of the question. Even social issues, like poverty or overpopulation, would not be a consideration. (Killing people is the most straightfoward, obvious solution to overpopulation, but what government would ever seriously consider that as an actual solution? None, because it's firmly fixed in our minds that killing people is wrong.)

Before you protest this, and argue that abortion is not infanticide because a fetus is not a baby...
Then what  differentiates a fetus in a significantly moral way from a baby? What difference makes it so that it's justifiable to kill a fetus but not a baby? Physically a fetus is less developed, but a baby is physically less developed than an adult human being. Does that make infanticide less morally repugnant than say, parricide?

I'm throwing this question out there for everyone--can anyone mark a specific moment in the life of a fetus (from its conception to its birth), and throughout its development within the womb, when it ceases to become merely a bundle of cells, and becomes a sentinent human being? This is not a rhetorical question, by the way.
If one is going to argue for abortion, then one must draw the line somewhere. Not many, I'm sure, would simply draw the line at birth, and claim that it would be acceptable to abort a fetus a day before birth while simultaneously speaking out against infanticide.

Jude, you bring up a lot of practical considerations in your original post. But I think moral considerations come first. What I mean by that is--you can throw all these horrible case scenarios at me, illustrating the impracticality of banning abortion--the social problems, the potential wars. But unless you can first persuade me that abortion is not murder, the purely practical arguments in support of it are useless. In the context of general uncertainty today (that is, lack of consensus) over whether abortion can or cannot be classified as murder, the idea of say, waging war on Cuba for legalizing abortion seems ridiculous. But imagine if Cubans were legalizing the murder of all senior citizens over a certain age(or any other example you can think of, where there is absolutely no vagueness)--that's ageism.

The pragmatic considerations are important, but you can't exactly use them in arguments--it might be more practical to NOT wage war on the countries that legalize abortion, but to justify doing so you would first have to prove that legalization of abortion = NOT mass infanticide. So many of your more pragmatic points, while intriguing, would not really deter a "pro-life" argument that equated abortion with murder; they're similar to the argument that "a woman has the right to her own body" because they ignore(whether explicitly or implicitly) the perspective which argues that abortion might be as wrong as killing a baby.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #188 on: October 13, 2009, 07:13:17 PM »
We do not have the right to police other nations in their laws, no matter what Dubya tried to say.

Similarly, I do not believe that I have the right to police what other women do with their bodies. It is not advocating murder - it is called 'pro-choice', not 'pro-abortion'. I am also not trying to jump on you, Salomé, but I do not have to justify my stances by your morality. While there are certain things that are Just Wrong, you do not get to decide what they are for me, nor I for you.

Offline Salomé

Re: Abortion
« Reply #189 on: October 14, 2009, 08:50:59 AM »
Quote
We do not have the right to police other nations in their laws, no matter what Dubya tried to say.

What about humanitarian intervention? It's true that the Bush Administration pursued an aggressive, interventionist foreign policy. But I don't think the mention of Dubya was appropriate here; it just makes it seem like you're trying to simplify the debate and lump "pro-life" with Dubya. When I think intervention in a more positive sense I think along the lines of UN Peacekeeping & the ICJ. I'm not against the principle of UN intervention in genocides. I believe it's more important to stop genocides then it is to protect state sovereignty. The idea of state sovereignty, and even the concept of a state itself, are relatively recent, and I believe them only in the utilitarian sense--respect each state's sovereignty so that they're all happy. :-) There's no inherent moral value in respecting state sovereignty except because of the practical benefits (no war, etc)--a state is not a human being.

But I don't think the issue is even whether you or I believe or do not believe in intervention--particularly not the Dubya brand of it. My point is that if abortion is positively, undoubtedly not murder, then certainly intervening in another country's abortion laws would be unjustified. But if abortion = infanticide = genocide--then would you still be averse to intervention?

Quote
Similarly, I do not believe that I have the right to police what other women do with their bodies.
Neither do I, to a point. I believe no one has the right to police what people do to their own bodies, if their own bodies are the only bodies involved.
But my point was that some people believe that abortion is not just an issue concerning women and their bodies, but that they believe the issue involves another body--the body and life of a fetus. I'm sure many of these people also believe in the right of people to do what they  want with their bodies--except when their actions harm another (i.e. the fetus). In your above claim, there's already an implicit simplification of abortion to merely an issue of women and the right they have over their bodies. You avoid entirely the possibility that the fetus might be considered a third party--a body separate from the body of the woman, and posessing its own right to live. You argue from the assumption that abortion is not murder without addressing the assumption directly at all--and once again, I repeat, I don't claim that it is, or isn't.

I'm only saying that such assumptions are problematic, because much of the debate revolves around the disagreement over whether abortion is or is not murder.

Since you, as someone who believes in pro-choice, think abortion is most emphatically not murder, could you explain why? And where would you draw the line? At what point in the fetus' development would it be acceptable to abort it, and at what point would it be unacceptable? And why?

That's really what I was trying to ask, above.

Also, I don't mind that you used my name, or "you" --it makes it easier to argue--but for the record, I haven't specified my personal stance on the issue. I don't necessarily think that "pro-choice" = baby killing.  I was following a certain line of logic and questioning assumptions that I found problematic, but really, I'm more curious than anything.  "Pro-life" argues that because a fetus is an innocent human life, it should be protected--just like the life of a baby, a child, a teenager, an adult...etc. How would you respond to this?

Quote
I do not have to justify my stances by your morality. While there are certain things that are Just Wrong, you do not get to decide what they are for me, nor I for you.

Sounds like moral relativism. But what if I decided that I had the right to kill anyone that called me "dear?" What if my personal moral code said murder was acceptable as long as I didn't murder brunettes? It sounds completely arbitrary, but must I justify my stances on murder by your stances on morality? Sorry if that came across as flippant--the example was silly, but I hope you get my point.

In any case, this is irrelevant. I generally don't expect others to justify their stances against my measuring stick, but at the same time, whether we like it or not, there are certain universally accepted moral precepts in today's world that you cannot ignore when debating things like abortion. One of them is the idea that human life is precious and should not be harmed.

To reiterate with a point I made several times already: I don't think either "pro-choice" or "pro-life" support murder; both sides agree that murder is bad. The issue is in their disagreement over what "murder" is. So perhaps it doesn't have to do with morality at all. It's a technical issue, perhaps a scientific one. So I'll ask again. If abortion is not murder(and therefore acceptable, and not a contradiction of the belief that human life is precious), why? What makes killing a fetus acceptable, but killing a baby, or an adult, unacceptable?

Quote
It is not advocating murder - it is called 'pro-choice', not 'pro-abortion'.
I used the term "pro-abortion" because I think "pro-choice" (the term) ignores the crux of the point of debate. And it implies that those who are "pro-life" are against CHOICE, while "pro-life" implies that those who are "pro-choice" are against LIFE--which is not true at all. Both sides simply have different ideas of what constitutes "choice" and "life."
You could argue that pro-abortion implies that the woman will necessarily abort her baby, but the term could also simply refer to support of abortion, although not necessarily choosing it.

I didn't want to be repetitive, believe me. But hopefully I did make myself clear.

Online Lilias

Re: Abortion
« Reply #190 on: October 14, 2009, 09:05:21 AM »
What about humanitarian intervention? It's true that the Bush Administration pursued an aggressive, interventionist foreign policy. But I don't think the mention of Dubya was appropriate here; it just makes it seem like you're trying to simplify the debate and lump "pro-life" with Dubya. When I think intervention in a more positive sense I think along the lines of UN Peacekeeping & the ICJ. I'm not against the principle of UN intervention in genocides. I believe it's more important to stop genocides then it is to protect state sovereignty. The idea of state sovereignty, and even the concept of a state itself, are relatively recent, and I believe them only in the utilitarian sense--respect each state's sovereignty so that they're all happy. :-) There's no inherent moral value in respecting state sovereignty except because of the practical benefits (no war, etc)--a state is not a human being.

I haven't seen any such humanitarian intervention in the cases of systematic late-term abortions in case the fetus is female, a common practice in India and China for decades. India was left to finally outlaw the practice by itself, and is now struggling to enforce the law, while China remains an untouchable holy cow.

Before intervening to stop genocide, one needs to define it first.

Offline Kate

Re: Abortion
« Reply #191 on: October 14, 2009, 09:39:12 AM »
Genocide is the deliberate attempt to destroy a particular race or sub-race of humanity.

Although attempted by Nazi's and elsewhere since (Africa), and beforehand
(btw in South America the conquistadors DID have armour the bronse tipped arrows and spears and sword could puncture but that wasn't why they conquered ... they sort of did it
by disease alone .. something like 90 percent of the astec's I think died from smallpox and something else hitting them at the same time they had no tolerance for.

Btw although they practiced sacrifice ...  when the spanish they saw the capital they literally thought they were in paradise it as so beautiful - the emperor had his best men without weapons to meet them - as a sign of strength - which the spanish saw as an opportunity - and massacred them then took the emperor hostage ... burned the wooden bridges etc .. raised the city (i think they burned it ...) and the rest is history

but  only one time was an attempt at genocide "successful" (Shudder) - that is by the English.

(In tasmania (part of australia) all those living there had blonde hair and were literally killed off ... every single one - as such native title claims in that area don't really exist.

beforehand in history though ... it was attempted a lot !

(Romans realised it wasnt a hot idea ... and that just taking power by marring into the existing nobility and accepting whatever culture was already there PLUS adding roman gods and goddesses worked pretty damn well (... as long as roman citizens were held in high regard and taxes went to rome ... rome = happy )... much easier way to get others under your yoke and shackle.

One thing done in the last 3 generations though is the institutionalized cultural use of slavery of another race ... slavery it still happens (child labor etc) but it is not culturally organized en-mass top down like it used to be.

MASSIVE step forward.... long way to go ...

Offline Salomé

Re: Abortion
« Reply #192 on: October 14, 2009, 09:53:59 AM »
Lilias,

From the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide:
Quote
The Convention defines genocide as any of a number of acts committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group: killing members of the group; causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.


Genocide is pretty clearly defined, compared to abortion, so I'm not quite sure about what you  mean by "one needs to define [genocide] first."
If you mean that the UN can seem hypocritical and selective in its intervention of genocide, then I agree, but the UN is inevitably limited in what it can do;  China is on the Security Council & there's an obvious conflict of interest.

I'm also not sure about how the examples you bring up concerning China and India are relevant to the argument on abortion I discussed at length above, because China and India were heavily criticized for their laws regarding systematic, sex-selective late-term abortions. It is possible to be "pro-choice" without supporting late-term abortions, and many people are.

But then again, rethinking it, I suppose it's adds another intruiging dimension to the argument. Obviously, "pro-life" would be unconditionally opposed to the sort of abortion rampant in China & India; "pro-choice" would most likely be divided. But why? It once again leads back to the original question I asked about that elusive LINE that must be drawn, dividing the fetus from the baby, dividing life that is (relatively) acceptable to extinguish and life that is not.
So I think the question still has more to do with defining (acceptable) abortion.

Online Lilias

Re: Abortion
« Reply #193 on: October 14, 2009, 10:04:10 AM »
Genocide is pretty clearly defined, compared to abortion, so I'm not quite sure about what you  mean by "one needs to define [genocide] first."
If you mean that the UN can seem hypocritical and selective in its intervention of genocide, then I agree, but the UN is inevitably limited in what it can do;  China is on the Security Council & there's an obvious conflict of interest.

I'm also not sure about how the examples you bring up concerning China and India are relevant to the argument on abortion I discussed at length above, because China and India were heavily criticized for their laws regarding systematic, sex-selective late-term abortions. It is possible to be "pro-choice" without supporting late-term abortions, and many people are.

'Heavily criticised' is nowhere near 'humanitarian intervention', and if the cases of India and China don't qualify as genocide, then nothing that's happening in the first world does.

I'm just reminding everyone participating that a) abortion happens everywhere, not just where people have the leisure to debate on it, b) morals are absolute, so incompatible with any 'conflicts of interest', and c) no international organisation is qualified to act as a moral authority.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2009, 10:07:24 AM by Lilias »

Offline Oniya

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #194 on: October 14, 2009, 10:53:57 AM »
I used the term "pro-abortion" because I think "pro-choice" (the term) ignores the crux of the point of debate. And it implies that those who are "pro-life" are against CHOICE, while "pro-life" implies that those who are "pro-choice" are against LIFE--which is not true at all. Both sides simply have different ideas of what constitutes "choice" and "life."
You could argue that pro-abortion implies that the woman will necessarily abort her baby, but the term could also simply refer to support of abortion, although not necessarily choosing it.

I didn't want to be repetitive, believe me. But hopefully I did make myself clear.

The problem is that the very structure of the term 'pro-abortion' implies that interpretation.  It is very difficult to find a short, pithy term involving the prefix 'pro' that doesn't imply an 'anti' and vice-versa.  Pro-life implies that its counterpart is anti-life.  Pro-choice implies that its counterpart is anti-choice.  Anti-abortion implies that its counterpart is pro-abortion. 

Use of 'pro-' and 'anti-' attempts to compress an incredibly complex decision and range of views into black and white, and that just isn't going to be accurate, any more than an arrangement of the 1812 Overture for recorder and xylophone.

Offline Valerian

Re: Abortion
« Reply #195 on: October 14, 2009, 11:43:19 AM »
Use of 'pro-' and 'anti-' attempts to compress an incredibly complex decision and range of views into black and white, and that just isn't going to be accurate, any more than an arrangement of the 1812 Overture for recorder and xylophone.
*cringes at the very idea of such music*  But I agree wholeheartedly otherwise.

Salomé, If you're going to continue to use this math:
But if abortion = infanticide = genocide--then would you still be averse to intervention?
no one is ever going to take up that side of the argument.  By the definition you quoted, abortion is most emphatically NOT genocide.  As a categorization, neither infants nor fetuses represent any sort of "national, ethnic, racial or religious group".

You seem to be stating that somewhere, right now, Group A is forcing abortions on all pregnant women from group B in an attempt to wipe out group B, and I don't think that's what you mean to say.

Offline All Powerful Nateboi

Re: Abortion
« Reply #196 on: October 14, 2009, 02:26:08 PM »


To Those in Favor of Allowing Abortion:
- What about people who use abortion as birth control?

I'd have to start seeing some reliable proof of this happening. I'm sure there are some people who do, but I'm sure there are some people who purposely get sick to get off of work. "Some people might do X" is never a good reason to make a law.

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- If you are okay with terminating the life because it's "on someone else's property" and "it isn't human yet"; how do you reconcile this with your view on animal rights? (i.e. fetus = not human = animal = animal murder)

Those aren't actually my reasons for being alright with abortion, so it works out for me.

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- Do you believe in a soul?  If so, how can you know the unborn child doesn't have a soul?

Actually, I rather presume an unborn child *does* have a soul. That's why I Have to be alright with abortion. See, it's like this. I've been homeless. I've seen the unfiltered *shit* some children have to go through. I have, personally, seen newborns left to die and babies traded for baggies of crack. Until this country has an infrastructure in place so that this kind of thing doesn't have to happen, then I have to accept that sometimes, letting an unborn child go back to be with the divine is a more merciful and loving choice than making them live the horrible, abuse and shit filled life that they'd be living otherwise.

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- Why should the woman get the decision solely on whether or not to abort the child, when the man is equally responsible if she chooses to keep it?

Because the other option is that a man can make a woman get an abortion.  Plus, many states do have the option of a man waiving all paternal rights.

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- Typical trite "woman's body" arguments aside (which are more of a slogan than an actual justification); do you believe abortion is justified based on the fetus not being self-aware (or conscious, sentient, etc.) yet?  And if so, what about people who suffer from certain mental illness or reach a certain degree of senility?  Is it possible to support Abortion and not Euthanasia?

Well, as I implied earlier, yes. I do think that that's part of the justification. When a child is a newborn, we leave everything up to their parents. THat's because we feel that the parents are in the best place to be able to judge what is and is not best for that child. And since death is more merciful than continued life in some cases...well, there it is.

I'm honestly not sure if it's possible to support abortion and not euthanasia. I do support it (as you might have guessed), so that's not really a question that's come up for me.

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Re: Abortion
« Reply #197 on: October 14, 2009, 03:08:31 PM »
Since you, as someone who believes in pro-choice, think abortion is most emphatically not murder, could you explain why? And where would you draw the line? At what point in the fetus' development would it be acceptable to abort it, and at what point would it be unacceptable? And why?

That's really what I was trying to ask, above.

It boils down to when it becomes feasible for this thing, this collection of protein and enzymes and cells, to live outside the womb of another. I suppose you could call it murder, if you want, but you murder ticks when you remove them from your body and flush them down the toilet. You murder viruses when you take antibiotics (and it's closer to the genocide to which you've been referring, too). 'Murder', if you define it as 'to intentionally kill' is something we do all day. I resent its use because it is an attempt to bring loaded language into a debate. 'Murder' is a dirty word.

Removing unwanted matter from the body should be the decision of the host, not random people who live six states away.

Sounds like moral relativism. But what if I decided that I had the right to kill anyone that called me "dear?" What if my personal moral code said murder was acceptable as long as I didn't murder brunettes? It sounds completely arbitrary, but must I justify my stances on murder by your stances on morality? Sorry if that came across as flippant--the example was silly, but I hope you get my point.

Many, many theses have been written arguing that moral relativism is a) evil or b) wonderful. It's something debated up until this very day in academia, and so dismissing something as 'moral relativism' is essentially an unfair dismissal of what was said.

Also, if you decided that you want to kill all blondes and spare brunettes, you would be arrested, because enough people believe that you would be in the wrong to have made it against the law. Law follows majority belief, and that is the only reason this is even an issue- because enough people have morals that differ enough that they cannot agree on a law. Unfortunately, there isn't much room for moral relativism where the law is concerned, so something that is not black and white is forced into the black and white rigidity of illegal versus legal.

And for me, legality is about the only reason to debate widespread reasons for allowing abortions.

Offline Salomé

Re: Abortion
« Reply #198 on: October 14, 2009, 03:50:59 PM »
'Heavily criticised' is nowhere near 'humanitarian intervention', and if the cases of India and China don't qualify as genocide, then nothing that's happening in the first world does.
I'm just reminding everyone participating that a) abortion happens everywhere, not just where people have the leisure to debate on it, b) morals are absolute, so incompatible with any 'conflicts of interest', and c) no international organisation is qualified to act as a moral authority.
I'm not excusing lack of humanitarian intervention with the fact that there was heavy criticism; I'm not sure why you juxtaposed the two. The lack of humanitarian intervention in the cases of China and India I chalked up to the inevitable limitations of the UN. And I don't mean to demean the points that you are making, but I don't realize what their significance is--or at least, why you wrote them in response to my post--unless by "everyone participating" you mean that your points were intended to be completely unrelated to what
I wrote.
In any case--
Concerning "a) abortion happens everywhere, not just where people have the leisure to debate on it"... yes, this is true, but what is meant by that? The statement seems to insinuate that debating the right or wrong of such a commonplace happening is the only possible because of the leisure that wealth/economic stability brings... in other words, it seems to undermine the existence of such a debate itself(because regardless of the debate, abortion happens, period), but even if discussing the morality of abortion is a privilege of the leisurely, if it's truly a moral issue--which is what some people believe--it's a matter that should be discussed. That was a bit speculative, yes, but it was my attempt to understand where the statement was coming from.
For b)-- If you believe that morals are absolute, that certain actions are absolutely right or wrong, then many people (including Trieste, I think) might disagree with you. ("While there are certain things that are Just Wrong, you do not get to decide what they are for me, nor I for you.") In any case the pertinent point is that in politics & policies, morals are not regarded as absolute; many states and state-like entities manipulate 'morals' to act in ways that might have been considered immoral before. China uses cultural relativism to excuse its actions, actions that much of the world views as humanitarian crimes. Laws are often said to be the bare minimum of morality, but quite often laws are not written in accordance with what many people perceive as (im)morality--for example, the death penalty.
c) No international organization is qualified to act as a moral authority? It depends on what you mean by 'moral authority.' But the UN is technically qualified, in the sense that many of its conventions are considered to be the standard for international codes of 'moral' conduct. Sure, the UN can't arbitrary say, "purple is the color of evil"--moral authority does not stem from the UN. But it was grated to the UN by an agreement by its member states, who agreed to its conventions. E.g. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The problem is that the very structure of the term 'pro-abortion' implies that interpretation.  It is very difficult to find a short, pithy term involving the prefix 'pro' that doesn't imply an 'anti' and vice-versa.  Pro-life implies that its counterpart is anti-life.  Pro-choice implies that its counterpart is anti-choice.  Anti-abortion implies that its counterpart is pro-abortion. 

Use of 'pro-' and 'anti-' attempts to compress an incredibly complex decision and range of views into black and white, and that just isn't going to be accurate, any more than an arrangement of the 1812 Overture for recorder and xylophone.
Yes, you essentially summed up my more specific criticisms of the terms "pro-choice" and "pro-life" with more general statements about why the very use of the prefixes "pro" and "anti" can be problematic. While to a certain extent I agree with your general statements about "pro" and "anti," we cannot simply end with criticism; for practical purposes we need a handle for "pro-choice" and "pro-life." I was attempting to use a term that I thought was more accurate (even if only more slightly so). "Anti-abortion" and "pro-abortion" might not fit the bill perfectly, but I thought they were relatively better;  I was not attempting to compartmentalize the spectrum of opinions into "black" and "white." One can argue that "pro-choice" does not necessarily support abortion; it only believes that people should be free to make the choice concerning abortion--but in this very consent to a choice there is an implicit acknowledgement that the act of abortion is not an act that harms others. Anyway, from a practical standpoint I guess I was wrong; my using the term only sparked tangential debates... but if you've noticed, I switched back to the more widely used "pro-choice" and "pro-life" if only to avoid confusion.


Salomé, If you're going to continue to use this math: no one is ever going to take up that side of the argument.  By the definition you quoted, abortion is most emphatically NOT genocide.  As a categorization, neither infants nor fetuses represent any sort of "national, ethnic, racial or religious group".
You seem to be stating that somewhere, right now, Group A is forcing abortions on all pregnant women from group B in an attempt to wipe out group B, and I don't think that's what you mean to say.

I should not have used the equal sign, which, after all, is a mathematical symbol, but I was hoping that you'd infer from context that by "abortion = x" I merely meant "abortion is the moral equivalent of x." If you take the equal sign literally, certainly infanticide =/= genocide, but neither does abortion =/= infanticide. I can imagine people using it as a slogan, no one would argue that abortion WAS infanticide, because by definition one refers to the killing of fetuses and the other, to the killing of infants.
But there are people who DO argue that killing fetuses is just as morally reprehensive and wrong as killing infants--a point that no one seems to be addressing directly. And if it were established that mass abortion were morally equivalent to mass murder, then comparisons to genocide would not be out of the question. Perhaps infants don't belong to a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group--but they belong to an age group, and ageism is a form of discrimination too, just like racism. 




Offline JudeTopic starter

Re: Abortion
« Reply #199 on: October 14, 2009, 04:04:07 PM »
I have a hard time delineating what makes Abortion OK even though I'm not in favor of its outright banning.

I'd like to say it's a matter of sentience, but there's compelling evidence to show children are not sentient until sometime after birth.

Then there's the social contract argument, claiming that only those who agree to it are offered the rights therein, and fetuses cannot agree to a social contract.  Again, nor can infants, so it's difficult to use that as a justification.

Then there's the point of view that "the fetus cannot survive without the mother's support" and this gives terminating its existence validity.  If you take this moral statement to be this specific, then yes, a fetus is the only "human-like" organism that cannot survive without the specific biological mother's support (as infants can be raised by other people).

But if we make this moral argument a bit more general instead of having it be an incredibly specific notion, the principle becomes, "It is okay to terminate human life if it is dependent on others for survival."  This is where euthanasia and outright infanticide come into play.  You can disagree with the widening of the moral criteria, but it does make you wonder why such a narrow action is okay, but if you try and broaden it at all, it isn't.

I honestly can't think of a single logical contradiction to draw out or even identify the morals that are at play here.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2009, 04:05:29 PM by Jude »