Think Outside the Abortion Box

I’ve talked to a lot of people about abortion. And they all want to bring up one kind in particular: partial birth or late stage. They always want to focus on the fraction of women who have them done. There are only four doctors who do those now, as Dr. Tiller was shot while attending church in ’09. The main issue with a lot of these women is either their death or the child’s or both, and the many other horrifying possibilities. What happens if your doctor tells you that your child will be born brain-dead? What if your whole family’s destroyed because you had to pay half a million dollars to keep your child alive for a few years, only to watch the baby waste away. People want to wallow in their self-righteous delusions about life, but it’s all hypocrisy because it isn’t right to damn women with hate and fear for making a choice most people can’t even comprehend.

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29 thoughts on “Think Outside the Abortion Box

  1. Well said, all though even if you were to erase certain religions from the ascension of man, there would have certainly been secular humanists who would have concerns about some abortions–look at the groups who fight for animal and ecological rights for possible examples. This topic should also receive some thinking about future technologies–for example, when it is possible to move the gestation period to a machine (a robot would probably be a better term, but worse visual) instead of a human mother, that could further dehumanize the fetus, or swing in the other direction, meaning, if there was no chance for the mother to be killed in the process, and modern technologies eliminate other fatal birth defects, then the incentives to abort would be lessened. Also, global population growth rates are plateauing and will soon be in decline. Someday humans will either be living twice as long or big families will be in vogue once more.

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  2. Its somewhat late i know, but what the “hell”. I actually think there is a good secular argument to be made against abortion. Science determines the beginning of human life at conception and Marry Ann Warrens personhood argument (the groundwork for the personhood argument in general) is, in my opinion, not thought through to the end.

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    1. It’s never too late, I’d just as happily discuss my very post. Personhood isn’t a very strong secular argument in my opinion. One, Scientists and Doctors are in debate about when life begins and if we are even alive at all. Personhood to me is more about splitting hairs: if it’s unethical to kill a group of cells then it should be equally unethical to have a period, or jerk off–miscarriage would be unethical, and so would taking antibiotics. Those cells could be considered life, but we piss them away daily. Personally, I think the big issue isn’t about “life” at all, it’s about a women’s right to make her own choice; the best choice for her life, health, and family. It’s very personal ethic choice that shouldn’t be made by the state.

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      1. “It’s never too late, I’d just as happily discuss my very post.”
        Good 🙂

        “One, Scientists and Doctors are in debate about when life begins..:”
        In the recent past science has made progress in that regard. Human life begins when a special haploid cell (called zygote) is formed. Haploid cells are composed of 46 chromosomes. 23 from one source (sperm) and 23 respectively from the egg cell. After the fusion process is complete, the newly created zygote has unique genetic information. Color of Hair, Eyes, risk of genetic conditions and so on can be determined.

        “…and if we are even alive at all.”
        This i cant seem to wrap my head around. Maybe you could try and clarify.

        “Personhood to me is more about splitting hairs: if it’s unethical to kill a group of cells then it should be equally unethical to have a period, or jerk off–miscarriage would be unethical, and so would…”
        This is pretty much the personhood argument. Since a zygote is not a person (consciousness and so on are not present, there is no ethical quarrel in terminating it. But there is one significant difference. This “clump” of cells is a human being in development. In all your examples there has never been another genetically unique being been introduced. Sperm will not develop into a human being by itself if you nourish and protect it properly. The zygote will. That’s what i meant by “not thought through to the end”.

        “I think the big issue isn’t about “life” at all, it’s about a women’s right to make her own choice;”
        I beg to differ. For you the issue might not be about life. To me it is. And of course i agree, a women’s right to control her own body is very important. But that doesn’t mean its absolute.

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        1. “In the recent past science has made progress in that regard. Human life begins when a special haploid cell (called zygote) is formed. Haploid cells are composed of 46 chromosomes. 23 from one source (sperm) and 23 respectively from the egg cell. After the fusion process is complete, the newly created zygote has unique genetic information. Color of Hair, Eyes, risk of genetic conditions and so on can be determined.”
          Sure some agree life begins with the zygote, but other think it occurs after the heart starts beating, others after the brain forms (which is when I would personally call it alive). Please, if you have a sources or links I could take a look at, share them.

          ““…and if we are even alive at all.”
          This i cant seem to wrap my head around. Maybe you could try and clarify.”
          I’m so sorry, the name of the book eludes me at this moment, but if I remember I’ll comment, but it was about current unsolved science mysteries. One of the best is about whether or not we are alive, example, you wouldn’t nessesarry call cell alive on it’s own, but the organisms that form out of clusters of them (like us, humans) seem ‘alive’. It’s a hard question to answer because we’re bags of chemicals, but we have brains. We know we’re just bio-electrical machines, but we feel there’s ‘more than meets the eye’ as they say.

          ““clump” of cells is a human being in development. In all your examples there has never been another genetically unique being been introduced. Sperm will not develop into a human being by itself if you nourish and protect it properly. The zygote will. That’s what i meant by “not thought through to the end”.”
          I think I get you, but I don’t view humans as special to any other plant or animal, it’s all just mutated star dust on a giant petri dish to me.
          “For you the issue might not be about life. To me it is. And of course i agree, a women’s right to control her own body is very important. But that doesn’t mean its absolute.”
          Absolutes are false promises, and life has no absolute definition.

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          1. “Please, if you have a sources or links I could take a look at, share them.”
            The oxford dictionary defines life as “the condition that distinguishes animals and plants from inorganic matter, including the capacity for growth, reproduction, functional activity, and continual change preceding death:”
            Also you can check here:
            http://clinicquotes.com/category/quotes/scientists-speak/
            http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2012/12/7300/
            Or simply.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zygote

            “…like us, humans) seem ‘alive’. It’s a hard question to answer because we’re bags of chemicals, but we have brains. We know we’re just bio-electrical machines”
            I think empirical evidence strongly suggests that we are alive by most definitions 😉

            “I think I get you, but I don’t view humans as special to any other plant or animal, it’s all just mutated star dust on a giant petri dish to me.”
            This is pretty much a depiction of reality. There are two comments i have on this.
            One. To an outside observer this holds true. But to someone who is directly affected, has the condition of being human, an argument can be made for specialness. Derived from a relative viewpoint. To humans, humans are special.
            Two. Being special is not a requisite to rights. Most people are fairly normal, still they have the same rights as anyone else.

            “Absolutes are false promises, and life has no absolute definition.”
            I agree. I just recently refuted an ontological argument for the existence of god, which obviously also touched on this subject. I came to the conclusion that absolutes can only exist in closed, human made systems. For example if you only look at basic math. Only the most simple calculations. Then 2+2=4 can be an absolute inside the system. But absolutes are human made and i’m reasonably sure they don’t exist in open systems.

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  3. People who use rare examples of late term abortions to advocate against abortion are no different than people who use the example of fraudsters to argue against a social safety net. The thing is, those are the exceptions and in the case of abortion, getting an abortion is hardly a walk in the park for women. It is a hard choice. Women dont go having lots of sex and not using birth control thinking “oh gee, im just gonna get an abortion if it happens.” it is a tough choice. Yet, everytime I hear some righteous asshole talk to me about abortion they employ these ridiculous strawmen

    The case of Marlise Munoz is an interesting one because she explicitly stated that she did not want to be kept on life support yet Texass kept her brain dead body alive for months to basically serve as an incubator for her deformed fetus. Why do we value a fetus more than the person carrying it?

    Her wishes as a grown individual were disregarded and some religious assholes were holding vigils and offering to adopt the child, calling pulling her off life support murder. The thing is, she is already dead and there currently are thousands of children – BORN, LIVING, EXISTING – that are orphans and suffering from physical disabilities and birth defects. Why dont these people who were offering to adopt Munoz’s deformed fetus not adopt those? Why insist on causing so much grief to the family of Munoz, disrespect her stated wishes to not be kept on life support so she can serve as an incubator for a deformed fetus which then some religious hypocrite can “adopt” and think he’s doing god’s work?

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    1. Normally, I’d delete a comment like this just because you should blog on your own blog, but I think I see what you’re saying and I agree, there are many ethical issues to be dealt with and many people only focus on the most absurd and impractical instead of dealing with the real problems. Hopefully someday people will get their heads out their asses until that time; keep up the fight against ignorance.

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      1. i was responding to your abortion comment and elaborating – not making another blog entry. If you dont want to have conversations and engage in discourse on your blog, then disable commenting. Feel free to delete my comment too as i would not want to take away from your blog by posting a thoughtful comment.

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        1. Look, don’t take it personally, I love engaging in conversation. It’s just good etiquette on the blogosphere to keep it simple with commenting. I didn’t say anything bad about what you posted, I agree with you. It doesn’t stop the fact that too many people do use others blogs as a stage for their own personal act instead just having a conversation. I’m not saying you are this kind of person. Just that good etiquette makes things better for all parties.

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          1. How do you distinguish what’s someone’s personal act and when someone is engaging in a genuine, good faith debate? Plus I have never heard of the supposed blogosphere etiquette that says comments should be kept simple. What is a turn off, however, is when a blogger jumps at peoples; throat and assumes bad faith because their commenting exceeds the imaginary word limit set by the blogger. At any rate, I am sorry I am not able to condense my thoughts into bumper sticker size. Not my style, so I guess this isn’t my blog then. Thank you for clarifying.

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            1. I’m sorry, I can clearly see I’ve offended you. I won’t go for the throat in the future, bad habit. But if you’re interested at all in etiquette check out Zero to Hero:http://dailypost.wordpress.com/zero-to-hero/ or go to: http://dailypost.wordpress.com/zero-to-hero/#17. If you don’t want to use those links, here’s the excerpt I’m talking about:
              Remember the basics of commenting etiquette: Stay on topic. Stay respectful. Be brief — if you have more than a paragraph, consider a post on your own blog, with a link to the original post. Avoid one-line comments like “Awesome!” or “Nice post!” Think of your comment as the beginning of a dialog, not a verbal emoticon. Don’t forget that you wrote a post in response to the same prompt — use your experience of writing it when you compose your comments.

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        1. it’s funny you bring that up, i tried to avoid drilling on the religious in the post, but it’s true. In my original edit I had written Christians instead of people, but opinions very so much from person to person, that I thought it best to not single out a group. Perhaps I wrong in not doing so?

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                  1. Well, when you look at it like that, the fact that they aren’t out stoning convenience store workers on Monday for having worked on Sunday should put them in the cheap seats on a bus to hell… but none of them have the guts for that… not the USA anyway.

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