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Author Topic: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech  (Read 10082 times)

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Offline Rider of WindTopic starter

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I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« on: September 30, 2010, 03:26:26 PM »
http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=158348990848143#

She is...amazing. Her views are so strong and so well conveyed that my own views have shifted to accommodate hers. Not changed but...opened a bit. Enjoy.

Online Vekseid

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2010, 04:22:24 PM »
She keeps saying how she feels that people she annoys with her appeals to God are just 'jewels in her crown', as she says. She is a testament in her own right, and invoking grace does not strengthen her statements - it cheapens them. I can't say her faith disappoints me as such, but to me - it's just another crutch she uses where she can be standing on her own.

When I was still a Catholic, we watched a late term abortion where the fetus was strangled and had its cranium crushed as it was being removed from the womb. We saw it struggle and then the mess, and the gathered remains of its torn corpse as the narrator mentioned that they would be reconstituted to make sure they got the entire baby out.

I've never been comfortable with non-medically (including psychologically) necessary late trimester abortions since.



But pro-lifers are very keen on focusing on late term abortions, because that's when the fetus is most recognizably a human infant. 70% of pregnancies end in miscarriage, mostly in the first trimester - and that's when the majority of abortions are performed.

Offline Trieste

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Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2010, 05:47:07 PM »
I've never been comfortable with non-medically (including psychologically) necessary late trimester abortions since.

Then don't get one.

I know you're not coming out in support of either side, necessarily, but I think that this is a good example of "If your conscience bothers you, then listen to it. However, do not mistake it for someone else's conscience." Things like getting one's tubes tied are perfectly legal, but are not done helter skelter. Carrying marijuana has been decriminalized in my state; does that mean that everyone will do it just because they can? Hardly. Keeping abortions legal does not encourage anyone who wasn't thinking of one already to go out and get one; it simply allows those considering their options to listen to their own conscience, and make their decision based on their own feelings and situation, not based on some misguided excuse for ethical standards.

Offline Serephino

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2010, 09:06:27 PM »
She has an interesting story, and some good points.  I felt like I was sitting through a church service again.....  If I'm not mistaken, late term abortions are illegal unless the mother's life is in danger, and I'm okay with that.  I believe the limit is 12 weeks. 

Offline errantwandering

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Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2010, 09:29:28 PM »
I think the key problem with the abortion debate is that everyone disagrees at what point the child ceases to be a part of someone's body and becomes its own entity.  Even American law is divided on it, shooting and killing a pregnant woman is considered 2 different murders, but if said pregnant woman were to end her pregnancy, it is simply tissue removal.  Personally, I feel that anything other then a very early term abortion is a murder, because I draw that particular line at the moment it has a discernible heartbeat and brain activity, which is at the 6 week point. 

Offline alxnjsh

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2010, 09:32:48 PM »
Then don't get one.

I'm not sure that's the point. People who are anti-abortion aren't just doing it because of some flippant ethical guideline. Many could probably care less about the mother. They are focusing on the rights of the little creature growing in the belly and that little creature's right to live. Someone f'ed up and got pregnant and now there's a living thing that must suffer the consequences.*

To tell an an anti-abortion person to "not get one" is akin to saying - don't advocate for the little thing that can't advocate for itself. The crux of the argument isn't whether or not they have a higher standard for an ethical code...they believe that the mass of whatever in someone's belly is a living creature that deserves the right to live.

Your example of legalizing marijuana has the same litmus test for this argument. Marijuana doesn't have anything to do with LIFE, with someone's right to be born into the world and LIVE. An argument I think would be comparable would be capital punishment. I find it rather ironic/funny/disgraceful that so many right to life people are pro-capital punishment. If the crux of the argument is the right to life, why should we kill at any time? Anywho...

Now...my position doesn't really matter, I'm just saying that you're vastly oversimplifying the argument. Do I think the woman in the video has some issues of grandeur in her argument? Probably...then again I'm not an aborted child that survived.

*Understandably there are a minority of pregnancies that are due to incest/rape or medically crucial to save the life of the mother. The stat I found was 1% and 6% for these. 93% were social in nature (noted as unwanted, inconvenient, etc.).

Offline Asuras

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2010, 09:48:39 PM »
When I was religious, I regarded life as beginning at conception. Since I started questioning that I can no longer ethically (this being the key word) distinguish between the humanity of a clump of cells in an embryo, a toddler crawling in a cradle, or cattle in a farm. It is a harrowing question.

Offline Trieste

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Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2010, 09:54:17 PM »
To tell an an anti-abortion person to "not get one" is akin to saying - don't advocate for the little thing that can't advocate for itself. The crux of the argument isn't whether or not they have a higher standard for an ethical code...they believe that the mass of whatever in someone's belly is a living creature that deserves the right to live.

Tell you what. The advocates for the poor little fetus can pay for fetal removal. If the thing is at the point where it can live without the mother's support, then so be it; they can have it. If the thing cannot live without the mother, however, then it is not its own discrete organism, and external organisms have absolutely no business with it. None. Nada. At all. Period.

Your example of legalizing marijuana has the same litmus test for this argument. Marijuana doesn't have anything to do with LIFE, with someone's right to be born into the world and LIVE. An argument I think would be comparable would be capital punishment. I find it rather ironic/funny/disgraceful that so many right to life people are pro-capital punishment. If the crux of the argument is the right to life, why should we kill at any time? Anywho...

120th-trimester abortion is okay, but god help you if you do it in the 2nd one. :)

Offline alxnjsh

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2010, 09:58:20 PM »
120th-trimester abortion is okay, but god help you if you do it in the 2nd one. :)

*insert very inappropriate hysterical laughter*

Offline errantwandering

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Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2010, 10:14:49 PM »
I see a pretty big difference between capital punishment and abortion, actually.  In my eyes, abortion is the killing of an innocent, IE murder.  If there is overwhelming evidence of guilt in a capital punishment case, however, then that person is by no means innocent.  Some people do deserve to die, that isn't murder.  Have to be careful with that one, though...if there is even the smallest chance of innocence, capital punishment shouldn't be used.

Offline Trieste

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Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2010, 10:41:10 PM »
*insert very inappropriate hysterical laughter*

*winks*  :-*

I see a pretty big difference between capital punishment and abortion, actually.  In my eyes, abortion is the killing of an innocent, IE murder.  If there is overwhelming evidence of guilt in a capital punishment case, however, then that person is by no means innocent.  Some people do deserve to die, that isn't murder.  Have to be careful with that one, though...if there is even the smallest chance of innocence, capital punishment shouldn't be used.

I think most people can agree that capital punishment is all fine and dandy if you could trust the justice system. I think that most people can agree that you would be a fool to trust the justice system with human lives. Therein lies the rub, and the conflict is what to do about it.

If you want to discuss capital punishment in further detail, feel free to make a thread. :)

Offline Host of Seraphim

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2010, 11:48:23 PM »
At around like 3:45 in:

Quote
We are in an interesting battle, whether we realize it or not. It is a battle between life and death. What side are you on?

Oh, gimme a break. It is nowhere near that simple. Pro-choice people aren't on the side of death. I don't have a have a chalkboard that says "BABIES - ABORTIONS" and add another tally under the abortions side each time a woman gets one. I don't put on a party hat and blow a kazoo when I hear about a family member or friend having a miscarriage. I've never heard of pro-choice people following around pregnant women and pestering them to abort. And I'm pretty sure abortionists don't wake up gleefully rubbing their hands together at the prospect of killing fetuses.

I agree with Vekseid about her weakening her standpoint by bringing up religion. I also agree with alxnjsh that she seems to be suffering from some illusions of grandeur. o_O She was a bit creepy, and the fact that her voice reminded me of the medium from Poltergeist didn't help at all.

Online Zeitgeist

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2010, 12:11:19 AM »
I cannot provide any witty, inspiring responses, much less answers to this issue. But that our human society suffers the macabre practice of late term saline abortions, with only an exception of saving the life of the mother in a last ditch emergency case, is completely unfathomable to me. How in the world did we get to a place where we thought for even a moment that such a thing was remotely acceptable?

Online Pumpkin Seeds

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2010, 02:22:31 AM »
I find her arguments extremely predictable and a definite appeal to emotion.  Everyone can gasp in horror at the procedure of a late term abortion and then turn venomous eyes on this surgeon who has a passion for abortions.  She paints this picture of abortion clinics becoming chain restraints like McDonald’s or something.  Her words are meant to paint battle lines but then again she forgets so much else in her efforts to make villains.  Such as all the services that Planned Parenthood gives to women including access to information about adoption.  She also forgets that late term abortion was made illegal some time ago.  Easier to bring up later term abortion though because if you move further down the line, arguments becomes a lot more gray and uncertain.  She is definitely appealing to emotion.

As for the comparison to the death penalty, the woman did open herself up to that criticism with her statement about our arrogance in deciding life and death.  Capital punishment is certainly a reflection of that arrogance in deciding life and death.  What I find more humorous is that she is the one trying to decide life and death by denying people a choice.  She is trying to deny people a choice based on her own perceptions and beliefs.  Interjecting God into that argument is just solidifying that she wants to press her own beliefs and their consequences on others.

Offline Synecdoche17

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2010, 03:24:24 AM »
The stat I found was 1% and 6% for these. 93% were social in nature (noted as unwanted, inconvenient, etc.).

A truly stupendous number of these "social abortions" could be prevented if the United States were to implement comprehensive programs to assist poor people, teach teenagers about sex ed, enforce child support payments from deadbeat parents, and stop shaming young women who become pregnant. Religious conservatives have blocked all of these - as far as I'm concerned, many of these so-called "pro-lifers" ought to blame themselves for the abortion rate.

Offline Jude

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2010, 03:26:58 AM »
I think abortion is closer to animal rights than it is capital punishment.  If a fetus isn't a person, it's still an animal.  I find it hilarious that a lot of people who are pro-choice are also animal rights extremists.

Online Pumpkin Seeds

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2010, 03:40:48 AM »
The argument is not whether the fetus is human but whether the fetus is alive.  Going by that statement something that is not alive is therefore an animal?  Makes absolutely no sense.

I am also a key supporter of Syn just said regarding social changes.  If the environment of the United States was made more conducive to young mothers, made more friendly for babies to be born to mothers that need help caring for those children and had a better adoption system then perhaps a true argument for abortion being taken off the table could be had.  When we as a society have a massive protest because the President of the United States wants to mandate all children having health insurance, then we are not a society that can rightfully say abortion is wrong.

As George Carlin said they will do anything for the unborn but once you’re born, you’re on your own.

Offline Jude

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #17 on: October 01, 2010, 05:15:32 AM »
It doesn't make any sense to argue that a fetus isn't alive.  Those are living cells, it's an undeniable fact.  If you're arguing "alive" in any human sense (as in aware, etc.), that's a different topic, but animals aren't alive in that sense either.  I don't see how a fetus fails to match the criteria for an animal, so maybe you could enlighten me?

Online Pumpkin Seeds

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #18 on: October 01, 2010, 05:28:58 AM »
Composed of living cells does not making something alive.  I could remove a person’s heart, set it on a table and the cells will continue to function.  Nobody would tell me the heart is a living organism though.  In truth a heart would have more a right to being called alive than a forming fetus because at least the heart has specialized cells which are functioning as intended.  The cells of a fetus are still forming, being assigned their place and dividing to create more.  Were you to stop breathing the cells in your body are alive for more than an hour after you have stopped taking in oxygen.  Are you still alive?

As for the difference between a fetus and an animal, I don’t really catch your problem here.  A human being is an animal so far as I am aware. 

Offline Jude

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #19 on: October 01, 2010, 07:14:21 AM »
So, just to be exact, do you think a fetus that is capable of perceiving and responding to sound, kicking in the womb, etc. is not a living organism?

As far as I can tell the justification for aborting a fetus is largely that it's not a human being, and that's an argument I can get behind:  it's not.  I'm not against abortion, my point was just that it's silly to be an extreme advocate of animal rights (say, considering killing ants wrong) while being OK with abortion (because obviously a fetus is infinitely more complex, sophisticated, and "closer" to human than an ant).  Both are parts of the extreme left wing "profile" however, it just seems immensely hypocritical.

Not that the extreme right wing isn't guilty of something similar -- "WE DON'T NEED BIG GOVERNMENT TELLING US HOW TO LIVE, INDIVIDUAL LIBERTY -- except when it comes to mandating that women cannot have an abortion, people injecting drugs into their own body, and letting gays marry, then we want big government intervening whenever possible."

Offline DarklingAlice

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #20 on: October 01, 2010, 08:37:04 AM »
Nobody would tell me the heart is a living organism though.  In truth a heart would have more a right to being called alive than a forming fetus because at least the heart has specialized cells which are functioning as intended.
Careful here, cells in a fetus are differentiated and functioning properly. This is the reason that we need embryonic stem cells as opposed tofetal stem cells. Indeed the basis of organ formation has occurred by the time we reach the fetal stage.

So, just to be exact, do you think a fetus that is capable of perceiving and responding to sound, kicking in the womb, etc. is not a living organism?
First, the majority of abortions occur at <9 weeks gestation (Source: CDC Abortion Surveillance). At this point it isn't even a fetus, much less a human being. It is completely incapable of: "perceiving and responding to sound, kicking in the womb, etc." Please refrain from mischaracterising the subject of this debate. And this isn't just directed at Jude. The dividing line between embryo and fetus is not arbitrary. An embryo does not even have the basis of all organisms and has a pre-developed brain that is less sophisticated than an insect's. It is not capable of sensation. These are essentially little more than teratomas. It is not until the fetus that the area even begins to get gray (unless you think that conception is divine magic <_<).

From the same study we can see that only 5.4% of abortions are carried out at or after the second trimester.

Further, a fetus is considered to have no chance of independent survival until 22 weeks.

(because obviously a fetus is infinitely more complex, sophisticated, and "closer" to human than an ant).
Oh wow, no. Only one of these things is true, the other two are just absurd.

Offline Jude

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #21 on: October 01, 2010, 08:47:55 AM »
Could you elaborate on your last statement?  You're much better educated about this than I am, so I'm curious to hear more of what you have to say on the matter.

Offline DarklingAlice

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #22 on: October 01, 2010, 10:19:55 AM »
Could you elaborate on your last statement?  You're much better educated about this than I am, so I'm curious to hear more of what you have to say on the matter.

The developmental bio bit? I don't want to go too much into it cause it is a little off topic, but I will be brief and you can PM me about anything else. I will concede that we might be having a semantic disconnect, but presuming we are not, you have severely underestimated the complexity and sophistication of insects (which by extension I am assuming will stand in for all non-human animals), or severely overestimated that of humans. There is remarkably little variation in complexity across higher eukaryotes. Variation tends to come in matters of scale and timing.

-To grab the example on hand (since I am currently slacking off from preparing my presentation on it  :P) there is so much homology between the human and drosophila brain function that we can express mutantHtt or alpha-synuclein within the drosophila brain, generate the symptoms of Huntington's or Parkinson's respectively, and perform drug trials to determine treatments in humans.
-The study of apoptosis grew out of observations of C. elegans, a roundworm that has 18,424 protein coding genes, which is not very far off from your ~20,000 protein coding genes. One actual benefit of the human genome project was that it finally put to rest the human genomic super-complexity nonsense. And if you really care about raw genome size (coding and non-coding), flowering plants are more complex by at least an order of magnitude.
-If functional complexity and sophistication were a meaningful rubric, bacteria have significantly more complex and sophisticated metabolisms than any eukaryote.

With rare exception humans share a large degree of structural and functional organ homology with other animals, a proteomic functional homology, and an almost complete functional gene homology. The same biochemistry happens in all of us, the same building blocks are manipulated in the same way, to result in similar functions. Nothing about our systems is particularly more complex.

What makes humans (and indeed any other lifeform) unique is what is expressed and when. The embryo is significantly less complex than any organism, because it is largely undifferentiated and does not even have basal components of all systems. The fetus is more developed, but still lacking in a great deal of functional sophistication (which is why it can't live outside the mother). The born human is quite complex and sophisticated, in almost all ways as complex as the adult (there is still a bit of neural and immune development to be done), which is to say: not that much more complex than an ant  :P

So that wasn't as brief as I would have liked, but: It is incorrect to describe a fetus as largely more complex or sophisticated than other animals, it is absurd to describe it as "infinitely" so. It is correct to call a fetus closer to a human than an ant. Although, the same is not true about a human embryo depending on the stage of embryonic development. Which is why, incidentally, I find the idea of being against embryonic stage abortion confusing. And as we see from the CDC data the majority of abortions are of embryos, not fetuses.

Online TheVillain

Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #23 on: October 01, 2010, 12:09:32 PM »
Just wanted to say that whoever said "heartbeat and brain activity are discernible at 6 weeks" is wrong. The heartbeat one is about right, and been recorded in as little time after conception as the 22nd day.

The brain however is a different story. There isn't even enough working brain matter for higher processes to be even theoretically possible until week 26 to 28 varying between people. And modern neurological studies suggest that consciousness and sentience don't begin until after birth.

Offline Salamander

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Re: I'm Speechless...Abortion Speech
« Reply #24 on: October 01, 2010, 12:23:23 PM »
Quite true. The key issue here isn't so much the number of neurons as their connectivity. You can have as many neurons as you like, but if they aren't wired together, then you don't get cognition. The connections between neurons are called synapses, and the process by which they join up with each other to form a functioning network is called synaptogenesis. Its been a few years since I studied this stuff, and I can't remember exactly when the main phase of synaptogenesis starts, but its pretty late- something like the 25th week. Before then, the fetus is just a mass of cells, with no cognitive capacity at all.