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June 25, 2013

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Obama just made an important speech about climate change and Texas Repulbicans are obsessig about proving their "pro-life" cred.

Fifty years from now, which act of political theater will look like an attempt to serve our society's best interests, and which will look like a bunch of self-aggrandizing assholes wanking themselves to distract attention from selling their political party to the oil companies?

You go, Senator Davis. I'd send testimony, but a string of four letter epithets is generally not persuasive.

On another note, I see the Supremes (not the singing group)showed once again that the concept of "original intent" is nothing less than political scumbuggery. Shame on them. Shame.

Perhaps Kermit Gosnell could provide some testimony. I'm sure he has something to say on the subject that Senator Davis would be happy to repeat.

Not smart enough to tell time, though.

Perhaps Adam Lanza's testimony could be brought to bear on those very, very late -term abortions to which the Texas legislature turns a blind eye.

Then they wash their mouths out with a rape kit.

Perhaps Kermit Gosnell could provide some testimony. I'm sure he has something to say on the subject that Senator Davis would be happy to repeat.

Send abortions underground and see how many more Kermit Gosnells you get.

Or, we could wait until the fetuses grow up and see which ones become Federal employees tasked with implementing nationwide stringent gun control measures and then have Kermit Gosnell, Ted Nugent, and various militia types shoot just those ones.

The problem with Kermit Gosnell, beside the fact that his mother's choice of a first name was not strictly regulated to preclude confusion with a Muppet, was that he apparently was a libertarian who believed regulation of his activities was an infringement of his rights by the state.

We could also mandate the placement of Skittles in the tiny fists of fetuses in utero and permission for them to vote twice in every election sans ID and see if that has any impact on mortality and also observe how that might play out in State Legislatures across the country.

I'm anti-abortion and pro-choice.

Maybe someone could write a post about fetal masturbation. Suggested title: 'Fetus, don't flail us now'

Brett:

I honestly don't get how invoking Gosnell is supposed to be an anti-abortion-rights argument. Gosnell's career is *exactly* what we pro-rights people have been trying to prevent. His practice brought back the Bad Old Days, when large public hospitals all needed entire wards for septic abortion cases.

Count:

I'm anti-abortion and pro-choice.

What the heck do you mean, "anti-abortion"? How are you opposed to this particular medical procedure -- one which, AFAIK, you could never have? I mean, I'm opposed to prostate surgery, too -- at least for myself.

Do you mean you think my friend was wrong to have the abortion that saved the life of her son, and quite possibly herself?

Or perhaps you mean you're opposed to it the way I'm opposed to colonostomy: I've never had one, I trust (or at least hope) I'll never need one, I find it icky to think about, I don't see how someone could have one casually, and the world would be a better place if it were never necessary.

Way to address the substance of Doc Science's post, Brett. Gold star!

I have good friends who went through something similar. In their case, the ailing twin did not die in utero, but it was clear that he would only live for minutes/hours after birth. The other twin was normal. They chose - CHOSE - to proceed and things worked out as well as could be reasonably expected (both born, one died in ~3hrs, the other is healthy and well, along with his Mom). All of this was in consultations with doctors, of course. I can't recall if the state legislature was consulted. It was a bittersweet day for them, but I believe strongly that it helped that they were able to choose a course of action. [note: if things had gone south for the fetus w/the defect before mom went into labor, I do believe they'd have had to go with a "partial birth abortion" to save the healthy one, but I wasn't necessarily privy to all the details of the scenarios).

People tend to find these things out right around 20 weeks. IIRC, the screening is done on or about 18 weeks (but given appt scheduling it can easily be 19 instead of 18) and the results take at least a few days to come back. You absolutely can face a situation where you find out, right at 20 weeks, that you are carrying a fetus with chromosonal defects that make it unviable (like, organs outside the body, abbey-normal heart/brain, and so on and so forth). Forcing women to bring such fetuses to term in service of your ideology is some twisted sh*t.

I also consider myself as pro-choice anti-abortion. What I mean with that is that there are far too many abortions that were justified at the time but were also the result of preventable circumstances. To be anti-abortion is to strive against those type of conditions. And I am of the firm opinion that a lot of those conditions are created by self-styled 'pro-lifers' who are often also anti-sex-ed, anti-contraceptve, anti-welfare, pro-'moral' etc.

pro-choice, anti-abortion = abortions should be legal, save and RARE. And the means are to reduce the conditions that make abortions the least bad choice.

I would counsel anyone who asked my opinion against having an abortion for convenience (i.e. one with no medical reason beyond avoiding the risks of a minimally risky pregnancy or personal reason such as rape/incest) while supporting her legal right to have one, anyway, since it shouldn't be my decision. I am also of the opinion that it would be better if unwanted preganacies could be avoided in the first place. I suppose that's a very narrow sort of anti-abortion position to have, but there it is.

I've seen some on the anti-choice side of the debate argue as if pro-choice people just love them some abortions, so I don't see any reason not to disabuse them, or anyone listening to them, of such notions.

Like many, my position is not set in stone at the moment of conception (until birth). Someone somewhere once said "pregnancy is a process" and man is that dead on. The trimester thing is a little clumsy, but does capture the basic truth that a 8-wk pregnancy != a 30-wk pregnancy.

Personally, I don't have any qualms with the idea of folks aborting early (yes, I know, "define early"). As things progress, my moral calculus begins to change. But - and this is KEY - it's *my* moral calculus and I'm extremely unwilling to have that put into legislation. I also very much doubt many women have abortions "for convenience" at 20+ weeks.

Also, too: define "convenience." Is "I'm poor, will probably lose my job and I'm just plain not ready to parent" constitute "convenience?" Is "I just found out the baby will have significant special needs" a "convenience" thing? How significant do those needs have to be for the decision to be acceptable? Quality of life factor (e.g., the baby will be born and live for hours/days/weeks/a few years/perhaps a decade... and so on)?

These aren't easy questions, and likewise they are very difficult to answer via legislation. Especially when the people crafting the legislation view "nuance" as a dirty word.

I honestly don't get how invoking Gosnell is supposed to be an anti-abortion-rights argument.

troll has trolled.

Way to address the substance of Doc Science's post, Brett. Gold star!

Damn, my snark meter just went off again. Reading: Darned good, but not toxic. Does that match your calibration?

Doc:

Your abortion=colonostomy comparison would be the accurate one.

I would also bring the Federal government into the mix for both procedures, in the first instance through subsidized universal health care insurance modeled on the Federal Employees Healthcare System, minus the prohibition on abortion, with incentives for mothers to bring the healthy baby, at the mother's choice, to term with superlative prenatal care, subsidized daycare for the child, whether raised by the mother or adoptive parents, a federally subsidized college education for the child and lifetime medical insurance for the entire family.

In the second instance, my prostate would receive all of the above, including daycare, but excepting the college education.

Maybe trade school.

"I honestly don't get how invoking Gosnell is supposed to be an anti-abortion-rights argument."

He got his business by referrals from supposedly legitimate clinics nominally committed to operating in a lawful manner. Thus demonstrating that legal abortion isn't an alternative to the Kermit Gosnells, it's cover for the Kermit Gosnells. Given a regime of legal abortion, pro-choicers sheltered the late term criminal abortionist. Saw to it that he, for years, walked right through inspections which should have shut him down almost instantly. Provided him with a steady stream of women who wanted to murder their viable infants, and who got victimized along with their own innocent victims.

Kermit Gosnell, and the circumstances that enabled him for so long, really eviscerated the argument that you had to have easy abortion in order to prevent back alley butchers. Easy abortion just let the butcher set up shop in a store front, instead.

Given a regime of legal abortion, pro-choicers sheltered the late term criminal abortionist.

Bullsh*t. The Pennsylvaniate GOP 'regime' barely tolerated abortion. There is a state regulatory structure in place that outlaws what Gosnell did. Conforming to GOP ideology, the regulations were not enforced. Using your logic, bank robbery is the result of the legalization of greed.

If abortion was the unhindered responsibility of the woman, if access to the procedure was unhindered, and if we had a public policy for such as part of a sane health care system, then the only clients for the Gosnells of the world would be religious kooks, or their parents, seeking to secretly terminate their "shame" and keep their hypocrisy intact.

If we could openly murder our children as they were about to be born, we wouldn't have to do it in secret. True enough. The Gosnells would find some even more extreme market niche to be sheltered in by the nominal centrists. Perhaps outright infanticide.

The regulations were not enforced, because the regulatory apparatus was captured by pro-choicers, determined that it not be enforced.

Hey, legal infanticide is a proud conservative tradition, provided it is done by the male head of the household before legally recognizing his paternity. All went downhill when (pagan) Rome abandoned this holied tradition (at least, if we believe what Roman conservatives had to say about it*). Even Christian Rome at times tolerated the practice (when Scandinavia joined).

*interestingly it was one of the main reasons Tacitus considered the Jews an immoral, reckless bunch. They did not tolerate the practice as any sane culture did.

Way to continue to ignore the points made by Dr. Science and me, Brett.

The regulations were not enforced, because the regulatory apparatus was captured by pro-choicers, determined that it not be enforced.

Ah, I see. Since they are so ineffectual at governing, there really is no point in electing Republicans.

Get the word out.

Gosnell was ammoral, a cost cutter, a profit maximizer, and undoubtedly greedy as all hell. Insofar as he exemplifies the capitalist entrepreneur ideal, and given cover by the Chamber of Commerce, our economic system and its supporters stand condemned.

Hey. This game is fun, Brett. Kanz we have more, please?

I wonder how a person who is upset about the possible murder of children could have voted for Bush the second time he ran for office?

If abortions were carried out by people wearing uniforms and acting under orders of the Commander in Chief (orders based on lies or misconceptions), would the Republican party beccome pro-abortion?

Is it murder to get an abortion after a rape, if the mother is a child herself, after incest, or if the mother will die without the abortion? Because if a self-proclaimed "pro-life" person thinks abortion might be necessary under any of those situations, than the sin-of-prider is actually pro-choice.

As most sin-of-priders actually are.

And, of course, many sin-of-priders are also perfectly willing to help kill children after they are born.

I think for some people the self-perception of being of superior morals is more important that the issue of abortion, certainly more important that any concern for the lives of children.

Hey, legal infanticide is a proud conservative tradition

I cry bullshit.

"Hey, legal infanticide is a proud conservative tradition"
"I cry bullshit."

He's talking about the Romans 2000 years ago. I didn't know that about Tacitus. Actually, there's a lot of things I don't know about Tacitus, but now there's one less.

Count:

Your abortion=colonostomy comparison would be the accurate one.

And you should notice that it makes you look *stupid*, not witty.

Saying "I'm anti-colonostomy but pro-choice" is baffling and dumb. *No-one says this*, because colonostomy has no moralistic qualities.

When a woman says, "I'm anti-abortion but pro-choice", what she's *really* saying is, "I'm not a slut but I claim not to judge other women. Much." When a man, like you, says it, it's wrapped up in so much bullshit I can't even translate it into reality.

The Only Moral Abortion Is My Abortion is a collection of examples of abortion doublethink, mostly from "pro-life" activitists who decide that their abortion is the different one.

HSH:

I would counsel anyone who asked my opinion against having an abortion for convenience (i.e. one with no medical reason beyond avoiding the risks of a minimally risky pregnancy or personal reason such as rape/incest)

I trust that you're lying to yourself. By the standards you give, "having an abortion for convenience" includes reasons such as:

  • being 15
  • not being able to afford raising another child (most American women who get abortions *are already mothers*)
  • working a job that isn't compatible with pregnancy, or where you might be laid off at any moment and pregnancy would increase that chance
  • you're already exhausted all the time
  • your partner has threatened to hurt and/or leave you if you get pregnant
  • your parents have threatened to throw you out if you get pregnant
  • the pregnancy is the result of consensual sex with someone other than your husband or partner
  • the pregnancy is the result of consensual sex with someone you don't actually like very much and who doesn't really deserve offspring
-- and that's just a partial list.

I hope that, in reality, you would counsel someone to do *what's best for her*, not to do what you bloodlessly imagine would be best in some clean, ideal world.

What's best for her in whose opinion? I wouldn't offer an opinion were I not asked to. And there may be circumstances under which I wouldn't offer an opinion even if asked because I wouldn't feel as though I knew enough to form an opinion (for example, one requiring medical knowledge that I lacked).

I expected a "what about this?" and "what about that?" response to my comment, which couldn't possibly have been comprehensive and exhaustive, but that's the internet for you.

Let's try this: to anyone who asks, short of my earlier exception, I would say, "If you think you can deal with this situation reasonably well without having an abortion, don't have one. You might regret it later, and a lot." I would say that because that is what I would think was best for her,even if she was 15. (I don't bloodlessly imagine clean, ideal abortions - not that I think you do, either).

Keep in mind, I'm discussing solicited advice, not interjecting my opinion, and not law.

That is the extent of my narrow anti-abortion position, as best as I am currently able to express it. I probably wouldn't bother trying to express it in any sort of public way if I didn't feel it was important to do so for the sake advocating for a liberal reproductive-rights regime.

Well, Doc, I take your point, I think.

My point, muddled, poorly thought out and expressed, perhaps because I worked within the examples you set out, or set up, whichever, was merely that I'd prefer abortion, the medical procedure, was not necessary for so many women, for so many reasons, including those in your list to HSH, of which I'm not competent to judge because I'm not in the shoes of the women in each of those situations (and I would hope that women in those situations could be surrounded by more enlightened, reasonable, and less judgmental people) therefore the need to keep the abortion procedure (and birth control methods) legal, accessible, and safe ("safe", as in regulated, like all other regulated medical procedures, moralistic or not) from the Texas Legislature and the Gosnells, but perhaps the need for which could be ameliorated by a la carte incentives to widen the choice of alternatives, of which the choice of accepting or not would be each individual woman's choice -- ie. what's best for the individual woman.

I read your link. It was enlightening.

I'll let you and Brett hash out the use of the word "slut".



Many people who are against abortion take that position because they believe that abortion is homicide.

What would you think of someone who argued that being exhausted all the time was a justifiable reason to commit homicide?

He's talking about the Romans 2000 years ago.

Romans and conservatives are the same?

Who knew?

You've got to really hate the Romans...

All I know is, I want the helmet with the brush on top.

the helmet with the brush makes for productive swirlies.

Hey, if you guys don't knock it off, you're not going to be allowed to sit together anymore.

"Many people who are against abortion take that position because they believe that abortion is homicide."

I don't think so. I think that many people who are against abortion claim to believe that it is homicide, but don't in fact believe that. There is good research data which indicates tha the majority of people who call themselves "pro-life" actually think that abortions hould be an optoin under some circumstances. Well, if it is homicide to abort a fertilized egg because the mother doesn't want to be pregnant for one reason than it is homicide to abort the egg for for another reason.

IT's either homicide or it isn't.

The only people who honestly believe that abortion is homicide are the ones who ALWAYS oppose abortion under all circumstances.

Other wise they are arguing that abortion is homicide, but that homocide is acceptable sometimes.


Nope, I think your typical "pro-lifer" is an anti-thinker. They get a kick out of getting all puffed up with outrage and bragging about how opposed to homicide they are, but don't stop to think about how they actually support the so-called homocide if the egg was fertillized by rape or incest.

There are lots of things that a person who is seriously opposed to abortion could do: support Planned Parenthood's birth control programs, spread truthful information about Plan B, promote sex education that includes birth control, support options for wome who can't keep the baby (which includes supporting WIC, Food Stamps, foster care funding, Medicaid...)

But how many of the vocal sin-of-priders do any of that?

"Texas is a state with one of the nation’s highest teenage motherhood rates, where a majority of women who give birth are poor enough to qualify for Medicaid. So, naturally, its political leaders have declared war against the right of women to choose whether or not they want to be pregnant. Funding for family planning has been slashed. This month, Gov. Rick Perry tried to pass a new law that would have shut down almost all the abortion clinics in the state, under the guise of expanded health and safety requirements."


From Gale Collins, NYT

And how many pro-lifers in Texas support the Innocence Project?

I don't know Laura, how many? Or do you just need to manufacture stuff for your senseless, apoplectic rants?

Let's narrow the question, Marty. Does Rick Perry support the Innocence Project?

We probably don't have hard data on how many pro-lifers in Texas (500th execution - that's killing someone, btw) support the Innocence Project. But maybe you could honestly hazard a guess of your own. Do you think Texas pro-lifers tend to support the Innocence Project? Honestly?


hsh,

I should have quoted, I was really responding to the previous sin of prider question. I am not find of the terms pro-life or pro-choice. Both manufactured to avoid using the word abortion.

I, however, support the innocence project and limiting, by law, late term abortions.

Supporting the innocence project seems to be a low bar.

(Not directed at you Marty)

Well, yes, I hate the Romans and their heirs in spirit, aka US conservatives. The Cato Institute is just a symptom.
---
The traditional Jewish position on abortion uses the principle of self-defense. The unborn may be killed when it threatens the mother up to the point of birth (once the head is out that option is off). For the first trimester there is a tendency to follow Aristotle (80 days rule of soul infusion) but imo that's not settled opinion universally.
So this makes a distinction between homicide and justifiable manslaughter, more than the loudest pro-lifers tend to do.

Ugh, but many do not even get over that low bar and are fully willing to have innocents executed when it saves money or would otherwise inconvenience them (executions serve other purposes too, e.g. allowing to close a case or getting ahead of one's rival for that vied elected position that only the toughest-on-crime will win).

I, however, support the innocence project and limiting, by law, late term abortions.

That's cool, but it appears you fall well short of thinking that abortion - regardless of how far along a pregnancy is - is homicide.

I'm not particularly opposed to limiting (not banning) late-term abortions by law, either. But that doesn't exactly make me a typical pro-lifer.

Something to consider, on the scary side, is that people who do consider abortion to be homicide must conclude that abortion clinics are getting away with mass murder, and that there is no legal remedy in sight. This justifies killing abortion providers, assuming it's okay to kill one person to prevent the murders of many.

But most self-proclaimed pro-lifers don't do that, and I don't think it's just a matter of lacking the guts. I think it's a matter of lacking the deep-down conviction that abortion truly is homicide. That's just my opinion, of course, FWIW.

hsh,
I believe in several forms of justifiable homicide. I may have said before that our society has adopted the position that abortion is justifiable homicide. I believe it is reasonable to discuss the bounds of that justification.

I may have said before that our society has adopted the position that abortion is justifiable homicide.

So, if a doctor performs an abortion not within the conditional restrictions in place in whatever jurisdiction the doctor performed the abortion, would he then be charged with murder, since that abortion would not be a justified homicide according to the position our society has adopted?

I should add though that we're not necessarily talking about society's position, as determined through semi-democratic means. We have been discussing what individual people think, some of whom (claim to) believe "abortion = murder, period." Murder is not justifiable homicide, by definition.

Nobody who is "pro-life" has yet explained how the situation I've outlined (which mirrors the one Dr. Science discussed) should work. Maybe that's just because Brett is the only full on pro-lifer here and he's busy. I dunno.

What I do know is that whenever I raise these sorts of sticky situations, it's mostly ignored (not just talking about here, obviously).

In the context over here (Germany) I am fully willing to discuss reasonable limits because I can be pretty sure that it will not end in an 'inch given yard taken'. If I were in the US I would go for all or nothing too since I know that there can be no common ground with the politically influential other side.
I have no problem with individual women being 100% against abortion as far as they themselves are concerned. And if someone forces them to have one then that is a crime that I would rank equal to infanticide. In general I hold to the rule: no morally justified abortion after the unborn becomes viable* outside the womb unless the mother would die or suffer permanent injury.

*truly viable, not 'will inevitably die in agony within a week'-viable

Well, yes, I hate the Romans and their heirs in spirit, aka US conservatives

It is nice to know that you are letting your hate flow through you. Emperor Palpatine would be proud.

hsh,
I don't know the answer on what the doctor may be charged with currently, yes is my assumed answer and answer of choice.

I think your comment on people homicide/murder is little disingenuous. However, I think there are people who believe there is no justification, but not that many.

I was however responding directly to your comment

"That's cool, but it appears you fall well short of thinking that abortion - regardless of how far along a pregnancy is - is homicide"

Where you didn't make that distinction. I believe at any point after conception it is homicide, I am not uncomfortable with some minimal justifications along the way. Differing acceptable justifications based on number of weeks.

I favor axes. Maces will do when no proper axe is available.

Man schlage ihnen ihre Fressen
Mit schweren Eisenhämmern ein.

But as a wishy-washy liberal I will in some cases limit myself to the smashing of elbows and knees.
Seriously, there are some conservative loudmouths that wake in me the very strong urge to hit them in the face with a blunt instrument and be it just to wipe the smug grin away. Salon bolsheviks begging for the same treatment have become rare but the con supply seems limitless.

Other wise they are arguing that abortion is homicide, but that homocide is acceptable sometimes.

When someone starts shooting at a police officer, and the police officer returns fire killing the assailant, a homicide has occurred. Many people find that to be completely acceptable in that situation.

If instead the police officer shot and killed someone solely because he was exhausted all the time, even in America people might consider that to be going to far.

So, if a doctor performs an abortion not within the conditional restrictions in place in whatever jurisdiction the doctor performed the abortion, would he then be charged with murder

Of course, what else?

If instead the police officer shot and killed someone solely because he was exhausted all the time, even in America people might consider that to be going to far.

Key differences: The "someone" isn't an embryo, and doesn't live in the policeman's body.

"Because they were dependent on me" is not sufficient justification for homicide.

A "dependent" is a child or adult who can't live without the financial and/or emotional support of another person.

A "parasite" is something that lives on your body. It isn't merely "dependent". It takes away from the health of its host.

It's nice to have children, and many women choose to harbor parasites, who become dependents, who become adults. Some even become their mothers' care providers, and the terms can be reversed.

But dependents and parasites are not the same thing.

You're not helping your case.

You have no case.

The woman has the inalienable right to make the choice. This is not hard, folks.

So, Duff, want to address the 18 week screening issue?

No? I'm shocked.

I don't know what manufactured stuff you are referrig to, Marty. I asked a question. I did not manufacture an answer to it.

I don't have any problem with conceptualizing abortion as the killing of a person. I also don't have any problem discussing when that killing should be legal and when it shouldn't. Or when other killings should be legal and when they shouldn't.

Nearly everybody thinks it is OK to kill other people under some conditions.


My objection is to people who label themselves as morally superior based on one life/death issue, especially if the basis of their position is a claim that they don't seem to really believe anyway.

Can a person be "pro-life" and a global warming denier?

Seriously, there are some conservative loudmouths that wake in me the very strong urge to hit them in the face with a blunt instrument and be it just to wipe the smug grin away.

And people say that conservatives are too overtly violent.

Nearly everybody thinks it is OK to kill other people under some conditions.

That's the starting point for a discussion.

Can a person be "pro-life" and a global warming denier?

People can be nearly any combination of something and something-else. Even when being such a combination presents a contradiction.

That's humanity, in a nutshell.

Laura,

By any commonly accepted definition of pro-life in our country today, which is a term used almost exclusively to mean antiabortion, there is no real problem in also being a global warming denier or a global warming acceptor. They're just not really very related.

Laura doesn't want to have a discussion with you, Marty, she wants to tell you how completely wrong you are. Which you are, obviously and incontrovertibly. So suck it up, man.

That's the starting point for a discussion.

That discussion, as it relates to abortion, was reported quite eloquently in Roe v. Wade. You might wish to put it on your reading list.

And, just in case you don't like to read much, you can start with this part:

"It perhaps is not generally appreciated that the restrictive criminal abortion laws in effect in a majority of States today are of relatively recent vintage. Those laws, generally proscribing abortion or its attempt at any time during pregnancy except when necessary to preserve the pregnant woman's life, are not of ancient or even of common law origin. Instead, they derive from statutory changes effected, for the most part, in the latter half of the 19th century."

Or maybe you'd rather skip over to this part:

It is undisputed that, at common law, abortion performed before "quickening" -- the first recognizable movement of the fetus in utero, appearing usually from the 16th to the 18th week of pregnancy -- was not an indictable offense. The absence of a common law crime for pre-quickening abortion appears to have developed from a confluence of earlier philosophical, theological, and civil and canon law concepts of when life begins. These disciplines variously approached the question in terms of the point at which the embryo or fetus became "formed" or recognizably human, or in terms of when a "person" came into being, that is, infused with a "soul" or "animated." A loose consensus evolved in early English law that these events occurred at some point between conception and live birth. This was "mediate animation." Although Christian theology and the canon law came to fix the point of animation at 40 days for a male and 80 days for a female, a view that persisted until the 19th century, there was otherwise little agreement about the precise time of formation or animation. There was agreement, however, that, prior to this point, the fetus was to be regarded as part of the mother, and its destruction, therefore, was not homicide. Due to continued uncertainty about the precise time when animation occurred, to the lack of any empirical basis for the 40-80-day view, and perhaps to Aquinas' definition of movement as one of the two first principles of life, Bracton focused upon quickening as the critical point. The significance of quickening was echoed by later common law scholars, and found its way into the received common law in this country."

They're just not really very related.

Way to miss the point, Marty.

(When did you go back to being Marty, as opposed to CCDG? I just noticed that.)

That discussion, as it relates to abortion, was reported quite eloquently in Roe v. Wade. You might wish to put it on your reading list.

You think legality and morality are the same thing.

I don't.

Although Christian theology and the canon law came to fix the point of animation at 40 days for a male and 80 days for a female, a view that persisted until the 19th century...

Well, that's pretty fncking weird.

You think legality and morality are the same thing.

I don't.

You think dogs and horses are the same thing. But so do I!

Well, that's pretty fncking weird.

No kidding.

You think legality and morality are the same thing.

I don't.

Actually, I agree with you. You can think whatever you want about the morality of abortion, including refraining from it. Just don't force your morality on everyone else by way of the law.

You're still not getting it.

Actually I wasn't thinking about Marty until he attacked me and I don't recall his specific comments previous to the attack.

Sure people can combine all kinds of attitudes. However, the reason the Republican party leaders decided to invent the term "pro-life" was to obscure the possiblity that one person could have ( and vote based on) multiple attitudes about multiple issues.

The use of the term obscures what the person using the term believes. It substitutes a claim of moral superiority for a discussion of the ideas of the person claiming to be morallly superior.


It's a divisive term that prevents conversation about the common ground that exists, the common ground that most Americans are, in fact, in favor of allowing abortion under some circumstances.

But that's how wedge issue framing works: to divide and polarize, rather than to promote discussion.


Knock-knock, hello? Anyone "pro-life" actually want to take on the example I laid out?

This is not something I made up. This happens in real life. If you cannot deal with it, I have to question your seriousness.

Actually pro life was "invented" by marketers, the same people who invented pro choice, because in tested better than anti-abortion.

Just like pro-choice tested much better than pro-abortion.

These aren't broad concepts rolled together to "hide" something. They are terms used to create mass acceptance of a marketing concept, yes. But they are both specific to a particular issue.
I think trying to hold people accountable for some larger philosophical position based on either identification is a stretch.

Knock knock, life isn't perfect. Tests can be done in time. Anyone can create one hypothetical for any issue. If you can't imagine that the testing would be done based on a deadline I have to question your seriousness.

It's not a f*cking hypothetical, Marty. It's real life.

If you can't imagine that the testing would be done based on a deadline

Here I would have to defer to doctors who know more than I, but it's entirely possible that the timing of the test has to do with biology and it cannot be altered because a legislature has imposed a deadline.

I could be wrong on this. If the testing can be backed up to, say, 16 weeks with no adverse effects, then the specific example I laid out is less relevant. IF.

That still leaves other issues, of course. But thanks for at least responding in some way to repeated attempts at imposing real life situations on grand theory. Hat-tip.

My attemps at googling up the answer to "why at 18 weeks?" are not going well. I will note that some sources say "16 to 18 weeks" strongly suggesting the (quad screen) test can be done at 16 weeks. In both of my wife's pregnancies, it was done at 18. The CDC document says "18 to 20 weeks." So there is some fuzziness around exactly when it should be done. What I can't seem to get at is the why behind the timing. Which is why we'd need a doctor to explain it, I guess.

Ok, according to one source

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/007311.htm

"This test is usually performed between the 15th and 22nd weeks of the pregnancy, but it is most accurate between the 16th and 18th weeks."

So most accurate between 16 & 18 weeks. My wife's doctors always seemed to go for 18 weeks.

And again: the quad screen is, like the name implies, screening. If it comes back abnormal, there are more tests to do.

They are terms used to create mass acceptance of a marketing concept, yes. But they are both specific to a particular issue.

What about that "the party of life" crap thrown around during the Bush era? Not the same term, I know, but it was putting forth a larger philosophical position, even if pro-life wasn't (though I think it was, as I also do about pro-choice).

One last comment, because I'll end up adding more heat than light if I don't stop soon.

I seriously don't understand the idea of banning at 20 weeks, because I don't understand what scenario ya'll are thinking about. Are you seriously under the impression that women are aborting babies at or beyond the edge of viability just for "convenience?" If so, what are you basing that on?

Also, Marty, one more question: let's say they do a quad screen at 16 weeks, and further tests confirm the fetus has horrific defects such that it will not be viable (will live for hours at most, if it even makes it to term). Are you against aborting that fetus (let's say at 19 weeks)?

hsh,

I abandoned ccdg when it dawned on me that the dg part had really been taken from me by sapient subject to the counts assessment of course.

As for the labels, well IMHO, they really don't represent any more holier than thou attitude than their liberal counterparts. "We care more than you" is the underlying message of both sides, all the time.

Any actual discussion is only used to collect evidence of this against the other side.

"Are you seriously under the impression that women are aborting babies at or beyond the edge of viability just for "convenience?" If so, what are you basing that on?"

The variability of human motivation. Liberals are so hot on "diversity", and then, all of a sudden, it's, "But nobody would ever opt for a late term abortion unless it was genuinely necessary."

BS. Humans are diverse, and I'm not talking about the cosmetics, I'm talking about what goes on in their heads. Humans range from sacrifice their lives to save their children, to delivering them in the bathroom, and drowning them in the toilet.

Yes, blast it, there are women who'd have a late term abortion just to be rid of a child they want dead. There are women who'd pick the kid up after it was born, and strangle it.

Gosnell didn't lack for customers, and late term elective abortion was his specialty.

It is true that "pro-life" and pro-choice" are both labels that obscure the issue: abortion.

However, "pro-choice" is a label that has a real connection to the position re abortion taken by the idividual: pro-choice folks are indeed pro-choice about abortion (Not unlimited choice. Just choice within Roe vs Wade).

No, "pro-choice" is not a way of dodging the label "pro-abortion". There isn't much of a pro-abortion lobby. There is a lobby for letting people make choices about abortion, one of which might be to NOT have one.

But what about "pro-life"? A person who thinks abortoin should only be a choice under a more narrow range of circumstances than someone else isn't more "pro-life", they just fewer choices to be acceptable. The only basis for claiming to be "pro-life" is the assumption that there is someting morally superior about accepting a narrower range of choices.

It's a framing device that has done us all a great deal of harm. Opinion surveys show that there is actually quite a bit of common ground on abortion in our society, but that's been forgotten in the overheated rhetoric: pro-life,party of life, babykilling doctors, the misinformation about partial birth abortion, the claim that rape won't result in pregnancy, the equating of abortion with murder, the acts of domestic terrorism. "Pro-life" was the the beginning. The rhetoric, fueled by that assumption of moral superiority, has been getting more and more extreme as the years go by.

Heck, Planned Parenthood is a respectable, responsible mainstream organization. Attacking PP is like atacking the League of Women Voters. But all of a sudden they are baby killers!

Both sides say they care, of course, but one side has a much more pronounced history of claiming superior morals, and of using inflamatory rhetoric, rhetoric that has provided the rationale for violence.

"Both sides say they care, of course, but one side has a much more pronounced history of claiming superior morals, and of using inflammatory rhetoric, rhetoric that has provided the rationale for violence."

Yes, the history is clear that liberals and progressives and Democrats have regularly, up to and including today, spent much more time, energy and volume on proclaiming their moral superiority. All of my lifetime anyway.

The rest is your rationalization of why your marketers are, oh wait, more moral than the other guys.

Opinion surveys show that there is actually quite a bit of common ground on abortion in our society

So opinion surveys determine morality, now?

Laura is not contributing to overheated rhetoric one bit, except for that nearly all of her posts are attacking conservatives in the end.

Which somehow doesn't mean she's attacking Marty. Or me. Just...conservatives. You know...those guys.

To hell with civility, apparently. As long as we're not attacking each other by name, it's civil, no?

You should probably take a break, Mr. Slartibartfast.

IMHO.

Well Duff, she does wear on you after a while.

So opinion surveys determine morality, now?

Maybe not surveys but 'morality' is what a significant majority considers to be moral. We consider the mores of our ancestors and of other cultures often abhorrent but so they (would) do in reverse. As mentioned before selective infanticide was once seen as the moral option and our 'keep them all' as profoundly immoral, if not outright criminal. That's a skeleton in Plato's cave most prefer to ignore. And there's the 'spare the rod...' thing too for a less bloody example. Sorry but 'moral' is a rather fluid thing. The only thing one can hope for is that the current idea of it causes not too much of collateral damage (which in turn is a concept that would have abhorred at least some of our forebears, those who had hope in the Hague conventions being more than the sick joke the became).

'morality' is what a significant majority considers to be moral

I don't agree with this. If 75% of people decide that rounding up all the Jews and gassing them to death in camps is moral, you will consider that to be the moral thing to do? Or will you instead think that society is making an immoral choice?

selective infanticide was once seen as the moral option

Context is important. People had to choose between "the child dies" and "the whole family starves". They made the choice they thought was best. If a woman has to make a choice today between "the unborn child dies" and "the unborn child and the woman die" and chooses the former, I would consider that to be justifiable homicide.

In the Middle Ages it was the kill or starve, in Rome and Greece it was a moral question. If you read up, important thinkers openly beat the drum for copying the Spartan model where the decision was taken from the parents (who were obviously biased) and made instead by a state committee. Iirc some 'stone age' societies do essentialy the same but with them it is about survival of the group. Our society takes children away from their parents in case of neglect and not that long ago also in cases of 'moral weakness/turpitude/etc.' (primarily of single mothers). Today those kids are given to foster parents. In the cases from antiquity the state claimed the duty to kill of the 'weak' kids when he parents lacked the moral strength to do it themselves. That had little to do with hunger but with what we call today eugenics. We find that abhorrent, they did not and would find our ways morally unacceptable. Generally accepted (at the time and place) moral standards have killed innumerable people. What made the holocaust an anomaly is that it was not traditional at that time and place. A few centuries earlier (or a few hiundred miles east) the only objectionable part would have been that it was run as a secular operation.
Good and evil, if such absolutes exist, run at an angle with the moral/immoral frame, they are not identical. Evil deeds can be fully moral by contemporary standards and good ones completely immoral.
Kant used the example of hiding a person pursued by a murderer. When the murderer would come and ask you, if you hid the intended victim, it would in Kant's opinion not be acceptable to lie and deny the fact because for him a lie was an absolute no-no, although that would seal the fate of the victim and helping a murderer was obviously not a moral act.
Nazi morality is by the standards of most of the rest of humanity simply evil (and admittedly extremly self-serving). For the true aderents it was a 'new morality' that over time should have become the standard replacing the 'old morality' (same in the Sovie Union btw). It had not the time to fully catch on, thank whatever-higher-being. Different and incompatible systems of morality can exist at the same time at the same place but usually one takes dominance. But that can switch, cf. Christians in the Roman empire before and after Constantine. What we have today is a mix of both even if not offcially subscribing to either.
---
A famous example how a slightly different set of rules can determine a 'moral' outcome is from Scandinavia in the Viking age. A wandering Viking stays over night at a farm and in the morning leaves with some stuff before the farmer wakes up. His bad conscience catches up with him. He returns to the farm and...kills the farmer. Then he walks away with the goods still in his possession but with a clear conscience. Theft is a vile deed, taking by force from someone (who is awake and could defend himself) you kill with your own hands on the other hand is honorable.
Hey, when mighty states do it and not individuals it is still seen as legitimate (just ask any non-Latino Texan. 'By right of conquest' is still a favorite. I think I have heard that even here on ObWi a few times).

It had not the time to fully catch on, thank whatever-higher-being.

You kind of gave the game away at that point.

No, I do not concede that what the nazis did was not in line with some kind of 'morality', although neither I nor most other people share it. Systems of morality can be and often are horrible things with terrible consequences. I hope that I do not become a subject to such a kind of system. What I have to add at this point is a disticntion between enforced or shared morality systems. The Nazis for the most part did not get from the former to the latter but I think this was just because they had not time enough for that. The RCC on the other hand managed to impose its system long enough in many places that it became self-sustained (=shared). I do not subscribe to the opinion that ALL morality systems are shackles imposed long enough by the elites until the governed don't recognize them as that anymore but there are numerous examples of that (and numerous examples of failure). The strength of a system of morality lies, alas, not in its benevolence but in its ability to self-sustain, and constantly feeding human beings into the (metaphorical or literal) meat grinder has often be a part (often an integral one) of successful ones.
Withstand the wish for saints* to run the show; the butcher's bill will be worse than with open crooks at the helm.

*I consider some official saints to be equivalents of Adolf Hitler or at least Adolf Eichmann, proponents and fomenters of wholesale slaughter and genocide (while being mostly free of the desire to personally gain from it).

We disagree then. I think what the Nazis did was immoral. I don't need to count votes to know this.

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