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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Remember The Women And The Children

Saturday, September 25, 2010, marked the 30th Anniversary of the One-Child Policy in China. Lifenews.com featured an article that reminds of us the consequences of this law. For years we have heard horror stories of forced sterilization and even forced abortions.
Family planning officials frequently jail couples who refuse to comply, sentence them to house arrest or labor camps, revoke jobs or governmental support, use physical harassment or violence and often target other family members.

We are talking about countless women being taken from their homes, beaten, tied down to a chair, and having the life inside them taken against their will.

This is something that I believe everyone should be concerned of. Even those who call themselves Pro-Choice. This violates life and choice. Pro-Lifers are often accused of not caring about the woman.
Congressman Chris Smith of New Jersey, one of the leading pro-life and human rights advocates in Congress, joined today with Harry Wu, former Chinese political prisoner and president of the Laogai Research Foundation and Reggie Littlejohn, president of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, for a press conference on the dark anniversary.


Congressman Smith along with other Pro-Life leaders demonstrate time and again that Pro-Lifers do not ignore the women. We are the ones out there fighting to change policies like this. Policies that force women to be subjected to regular and painful examinations. Policies that degrade women. Policies that lead to thousands of born girls being abandoned or even killed for being nothing but the "wrong sex".

Not only are the unborn being slaughtered for being nothing but "second conceived" but young girls as well for "being girls."

What can we do to help?

Smith also appealed to President Obama and called on him to "speak out in defense of the Chinese people tomorrow, especially women and children, on this terrible anniversary." Doing so, he said, would provide encouragement for millions of Chinese people, "to suddenly feel that the leader of the free world understands and empathizes with their plight."

28 comments:

Yonmei said...

This is something that I believe everyone should be concerned of. Even those who call themselves Pro-Choice.

Oh, Michelle. I am pro-choice, so I have no ethical difficulty at all about opposing both forced pregnancy and forced abortion.

I notice that it does not bother you in the slightest when pro-life governments kill women by denying them access to safe legal abortion, so yeah, I don't think you care about either the women or the children.

Yonmei said...

Consequences of unsafe abortion in Kenya

No of women hospitalized for induced abortion complications in eastern Africa (2000): 612 940.

Percentage of maternal deaths due to unsafe abortion in eastern Africa (2003): 17%.

Reaction of American pro-lifers: Let the carnage continue!

Support for any claim that you oppose access to safe legal abortion, whether voluntary or forced, because you care about women: zero.

Nulono said...

I've already explained that the fact that the perpetrator can be harmed in the process of committing a violent crime does not legitimize said crime's legalization.

secularprolife.org said...

I have explained this numerous times, but I'll give it one more shot.

In developing countries, the cause of high maternal death rates in abortion is a poor medical infrastructure. Making abortion legal does not cause this infrastructure to rise to Western standards. It does, however, lead to MORE women getting (legal but unsafe) abortions.

In other words, the poor medical infrastructure is a confounding factor. But it's an easy enough factor to account for-- just look at developed countries instead. You'll find that those with abortion restrictions have lower maternal mortality rates. In fact, the lowest in the world belongs to Ireland, where the right to life from conception is protected in the nation's constitution.

secularprolife.org said...

As to the original question about what we can do to help, it seems that the only thing that ever gets the Chinese government's attention is negative international press. We cannot let this massacre become "old news." We need to do whatever we can do to put a new spin on the story, so that it keeps running in the papers. The recent pieces on Chen Guancheng are a good example. I want to see him nominated again for the Nobel Prize next year-- and this time, win it!

Michelle Ye Zhang said...

@Yonmei

Is their anything we can do or say that will change your preconceived notions of us?

Yonmei said...

Nulono said: I've already explained that the fact that the perpetrator can be harmed in the process of committing a violent crime does not legitimize said crime's legalization.

See, Michelle? Nulano is so far from caring about women and children that he regards a woman who has an abortion as a "perpetrator committing a violent crime".

SecularProlife: In developing countries, the cause of high maternal death rates in abortion is a poor medical infrastructure.

And yet, in developing countries where abortion is legal and available, maternal death rates are lower.

Though you have a point: in El Salvador, women who need abortions and who are educated/have access to the Internet, know about safer means of abortion than women in Kenya. Better medical infrastructure makes illegal abortions safer, though throughout the world, it is always less safe for women to force them to have illegal abortions rather than including abortion access in the normal medical infrastructure.

Not least because of course when abortion is included as part of normal family planning services, women who need to abort an unplanned pregnancy can get contraceptive advice about how best to prevent future unplanned pregnancies. Women forced by pro-life legislation to go to illegal abortion providers, will receive no such advice, thus keeping the abortion rate high and unsafe, as pro-lifers prefer.

darkcougar555 said...

Well, I often lol'd at her phony comments and ignored her.

But really... I don't see what is the point of explaining to Yonmei when she is clearly not interested in civil discussions. All she do is blaming and making more personal attacks against you guys.

It is not your worth time to bother her, in my opinion.

Yonmei said...

Michelle: Is their anything we can do or say that will change your preconceived notions of us?

I am pro-choice because I believe everyone is born with reason and conscience, that a woman's right not to have her body used against her will means she has the right to decide whether to terminate or continue her own pregnancy, and no one - not her father or her husband or her rapist or her government - has the right to force her against her will.

Do you believe that? Or would you stand with the Chinese government if they changed their minds and became as pro-life as SecularProlife himself - if the force and abuse was applied to ensuring women were not able to choose abortion, were not able to access safer methods of abortion - and instead died of ruptures, of poison, or died later in pregnancy because doctors in a pro-life state were forced to ignore their failing health.

SecularProlife has explicitly said he opposes the idea that a doctor shall have the legal right to provide an abortion to protect a woman's health - he's willing to have women permanently disabled, fertility destroyed forever, rather than allow safe legal abortion. Matthew has supported this, and has further said that he thinks it's a wonderful option to force a woman to have a baby against her will in order to take the baby away from her and give the baby to a better-off couple to raise.

Nulano has said repeatedly that he thinks once a girl or a woman has been raped, the rape victim is no longer an "innocent life" and should be forced through pregnancy - he's admitted in this thread that he thinks a woman seeking abortion is the perpetrator of a violent crime. I don't see you arguing with him.

So, you want to know what you could say.

You could publicly support the right of every woman to decide for herself to terminate or continue a pregnancy, and not to have a baby against her will: to have access to abortion as part of family planning services, so that she can have honest options, abortion, pre-natal care, contraception, all safe, all legal.

If you think women everywhere have the right to decide for themselves - say so. Support freedom, and human rights, and life. But if you support forcing women to have babies against their will, how are you any different from the Chinese government you pretend to decry? You both believe in force, whatever the cost in human life.

Yonmei said...

But really... I don't see what is the point of explaining to Yonmei when she is clearly not interested in civil discussions.

Well, it seems you aren't interested in any kind of discussion, DarkCougar. Although you are pro-choice, I've never seen you try to engage the pro-lifers here when you disagree with them...

Michelle Ye Zhang said...

@Yonmei

Then I guess I see no point here. You've already made up your mind on what Prolifers are and what we believe. You already have a strong prejudice that isn't going to change. Your mind is already closed to is so then I will no longer engage in dialogue.

If the only way for you to learn to respect me as an individual with my own ideas and beliefs without prescribing preconceived notions about me based on such a broad label as "Prolife" is if I suddenly became prochoice then there's really nothing left to say here.

darkcougar555 said...

Lol. OK, all right... You are really pain in butt, you know. Seriously. Do you realize not every pro-lifer fit the pro-life stereotype, don't you? Well, this is my last post to reply your comment, so I don't bother to reply back in future.

I'm a pro-life because aborting a child is definitely immoral and cruel. I may or may not agree on everything pro-lifers agreed on. I only agree on some pro-choice views, not all of them. That is why I'm a moderate. If all people are different, then all pro-lifers have different opinions as well. It does apply to pro-choicers.

Since you don't believe in any woman who regret her choice... Just because you think abortion is tears free, rainbow, and joyful choice, that does not mean women can't feel regret. Whatever you said does not make it is true, either.

Let me ask you... Isn't it possible for some women to regret having abortions and some women not regret them? I think it is YES. I've seen this go both ways! Pro-lifers who tend to assume that all women who have had abortions must necessarily regret them, while pro-choicers who tend to assume that if a woman regrets an abortion there must be something wrong with her. Like, she's been brainwashed by pro-lifers or something.

Com'on... Why the insistence on telling other people what they're supposed to feel?

In my opinions, both pro-choice and pro-life need moderates because I don't always trust both agendas. I quited being feminist cos I realized how much it sucks. No, I'm not an anti-feminist because I'm for equality, not the revenge against men.

On the another hand... I know you're very anti-adoption. So how could you be pro-choice if you just support abortion and are against adoption? Please keep in mind, I don't agree with pro-chociers 100%. Reasons? I don't agree abortion is better than adoption, but I don't agree adoption is better than abortion either. Both are really horrible, so I don't like them.

I can tell more reasons why I really prefer pro-life to pro-choice. *shrugs*

darkcougar555 said...

My last reply (for Yonmei) seems go in the spam. I guess I'll wait for it until it show up.

@Michelle
Yeah. That is why I don't take her personally. We should lol and ignore them, someone will feel idiot. But if we react to someone's comments, he/she will feel good about him/herself. Because that is what he/she wants to see your reaction.

Yonmei said...

You've already made up your mind on what Prolifers are and what we believe.

Based, you note, on what pro-lifers on this blog have explicitly said they believe.

If you feel differently from those who have already spoken, already argued for the suffering and death of women, you have only to say so.

If you don't feel differently - if like Nulano you feel that raped women should be forced through pregnancy, like Matthew you want the pro-life carnage to continue in Kenya, like SecularProlife you think that women's health doesn't merit preserving - then please at least note that I'm not going with "preconceived views": I'm judging the pro-lifers on this blog by what they have said of their own views.

If the only way for you to learn to respect me as an individual with my own ideas and beliefs without prescribing preconceived notions about me based on such a broad label as "Prolife" is if I suddenly became prochoice then there's really nothing left to say here.

Why yes: I can't respect your claim to care for women and children, if you actually believe - as your co-bloggers have so far made clear they believe - that women can be used against their will to produce babies, that women have no right to make their own decisions about their families.

If you have your own ideas and beliefs about respect for women, and those conflict with your co-bloggers' disrespect and misogny, I'm not the one stopping you from making clear you respect every woman's right to decide for herself whether to terminate or continue a pregnancy.

Michelle Ye Zhang said...

@Yonmei

"I'm not the one stopping you from making clear you respect every woman's right to decide for herself whether to terminate or continue a pregnancy"

Again. Seems like the only way you will respect us is if we were Pro-Choice. There's no more to talk about then.

secularprolife.org said...

Wait-- Yonmei thinks I'm a dude?

secularprolife.org said...

Sorry about that, darkcougar. Everything should be up now.

I'd just like to point out that, for all this trouble, the Blogger filter has not captured a single piece of actual spam.

Yonmei said...

Wait-- Yonmei thinks I'm a dude?

No, I think you're a misogynist.

But you're a female misogynist rather than a male one? I apologise: I'll remember to use the correct pronoun in future.

Yonmei said...

Michelle: Again. Seems like the only way you will respect us is if we were Pro-Choice.

Why yes. I don't respect people who believe in forcing women through pregnancy/childbirth.

You believe that it's right for the state to control women's bodies and force them if they will not obey. I don't, and I don't respect that, and I absolutely do not respect someone who makes a post like this claiming to care for "women and children" while in fact supporting state control of women and forced use of women's bodies.

Yonmei said...

DarkCougar: I'm a pro-life because aborting a child is definitely immoral and cruel.

You don't abort a child; You abort a embryo or a fetus. Your belief that it would be "immoral and cruel" to abort an embryo or a fetus is too sweeping to be of any value.

A 9-year-old child, pregnant from repeated rapes by her stepfather, who will die from a pregnancy her body is too immature to bear? You think it's "definitely immoral and cruel" to abort her pregnancy? Really?

A 14-year-old girl, working as a prostitute in Kenya, made pregnant by one of her customers, who is the only support for her HIV+ mother and her younger sisters? She wants an abortion, and you think it's "definitely immoral and cruel" for her to have it?

A 29-year-old woman, discovering when 5 months pregnant that her much-wanted fetus is dying inside her - that if the fetus survives to be born, the baby will die in pain within hours of birth? You think it's "definitely immoral and cruel" for her to have an abortion?

A woman whose cervix is so damaged that she will never be able to carry a fetus to term, who might well not survive pregnancy, who became pregnant due to contraceptive failure? You think it's "immoral and cruel" for her to have an abortion?

Those are all actual examples - all but one were able to have safe legal abortions and survived: one was denied an abortion due to pro-life feeling in her country and died.

Yonmei said...

Since you don't believe in any woman who regret her choice...

When did I say that?

What I have said, repeatedly, and I know you agree with me, is that every woman must have the right to make her choice. The only person who can decide whether to terminate or continue a pregnancy is the pregnant woman herself.

Pro-lifers believe that the pregnant woman herself shouldn't be allowed to choose: that in free countries where she has the legal right to choose, she should be denigrated and abused if she decides to abort.

Pro-lifers may not believe women are endowed with reason and conscience. But their beliefs cannot take the ability to choose away from a woman. All they can do is ensure that women have no access to safe legal abortion. Pro-lifers can and do ensure that women die in unsafe illegal abortions, or that women whose pregnancies have become threatening to their health die in hospital, not allowed to preserve their health by terminating the pregnancy.

A woman may regret her choice. But that does not mean she shouldn't be supported to make her choice from the maximum available range of possible options - not driven like an animal to give birth against her will and have the baby "wonderfully" removed from her.

Yonmei said...


Com'on... Why the insistence on telling other people what they're supposed to feel?


Why are you saying this to me?

If you think that people shouldn't tell other people what they're "supposed" to feel, why aren't you arguing with your pro-life buddies, like the pavement bully who spends her Saturdays telling women who've decided to have an abortion what they're "supposed" to feel?

I quited being feminist cos I realized how much it sucks. No, I'm not an anti-feminist because I'm for equality, not the revenge against men.

No, if you're for equality, you're a feminist. That's what being a feminist means. If you've been conned by anti-feminists into thinking that wanting equality means "revenge against men", you need to hang out with more feminists, that's all.

On the another hand... I know you're very anti-adoption. So how could you be pro-choice if you just support abortion and are against adoption?

Because I have talked to women who lost children and women who had babies when they couldn't really afford to support them and staggered from financial crisis to financial crisis, and I've read widely on women who lost babies - and while it's certainly possible for a woman to decide she's going to give birth to give her baby to some other parents to bring up, for the most part: women who lose babies to adoption suffer. It's a deeply painful experience to lose your child.

Low-income women in the US end up getting coerced by crisis pregnancy centers into having the baby so that they can have it adopted. It's clear that it's often really not a free choice on their part - they don't want to lose their baby, they've just ended up in a situation where they're made to feel that they have no alternative. It doesn't make losing their baby any less painful.

Yonmei said...

On the another hand... I know you're very anti-adoption. So how could you be pro-choice if you just support abortion and are against adoption?

I mean seriously: I don't even understand this question. How could anyone who isn't deeply, dehumanisingly misogynistic about women, not be against adoption?

A newborn baby belongs with the mother. Both of them need each other. A newborn baby can go to another person to be cared for, but the baby has at that point no active memory - they need to be cared for and loved and fed and kept warm, and a baby can receive that from any one person and flourish - they get an extra health boost if they're breastfed by their own mother, but it's not essential for survival.

But a woman who loses her baby suffers a devastating loss. I don't understand how anyone not completely inhuman can call that loss "wonderful". I don't understand how anyone could support it as an "option" that women should be encouraged to "choose". Choose pain and loss and suffering?

Allow a woman in poverty to be coerced into "choosing" that agony of loss because if she opts to keep her baby with her, as every instinct requires, she and the baby will leave with nothing - no means of support, no healthcare for herself and the baby, maybe no job or nowhere to live? I don't have words to express how awful I think that is, that the pro-life movement actually supports that kind of agony and separation and calls it "wonderful".

Yonmei said...

I can tell more reasons why I really prefer pro-life to pro-choice.

But you've made clear you actually prefer the reverse: you don't support forcing women. You, as a pro-choicer, believe every woman should have access to safe legal abortion, not forced to give birth and lose her baby to adoption.

So why do you feel the need to pretend you oppose it?

Michelle Ye Zhang said...

@ Yonmei

"You believe that it's right for the state to control women's bodies and force them if they will not obey."

No. I don't actually. Just like I don't think it is a right for the State to follow every person out of the bar grab them and make sure they get in a cab or walk home instead of driving.

I just believe the state has a right to prosecute that person if they choose to do so.

I don't believe the state has the right to strap a woman down and force her to sit there while she is pregnant.

I just believe the State should not be sanctioning the killing of a human being who hasn't been through court and found guilty of a crime.

Yonmei said...

Michelle: No. I don't actually. ... I just believe the state has a right to prosecute that person if they choose to do so.

So you do believe in state control of women's bodies.


I just believe the State should not be sanctioning the killing of a human being who hasn't been through court and found guilty of a crime.


But you're just fine with the State sanctioning the killing of a woman who is pregnant and decides to have an abortion - and can't get a safe abortion because the State is pro-life?

When you say "human being" - you clearly are excluding women and of course raped children. Hence my disrespect for your claim in the original post that you want people to "think of the women and children" - when plainly you don't.

Michelle Ye Zhang said...

"But you're just fine with the State sanctioning the killing of a woman who is pregnant and decides to have an abortion - and can't get a safe abortion because the State is pro-life?"

Nope. This is why I believe in harsh punishment for anyone performing illegal abortions and believe that hospitals should be well equipped to take in emergency cases of women who have undergone illegal abortions.

Just like hospitals are always prepared to treat patients who have overdosed on drugs or have gotten shot during a gang fight. Etc.

"When you say "human being" - you clearly are excluding women and of course raped children."

Again, how am I? When I'm talking about protecting the lives of both women and the unborn child inside them?

The only person here who is excluding human beings is you. Because they somehow fall short of worth for you when it comes to life.

Yonmei said...

This is why I believe in harsh punishment for anyone performing illegal abortions and believe that hospitals should be well equipped to take in emergency cases of women who have undergone illegal abortions.

So you're well aware that your demanding the state coerce and control women by "harsh punishments" will only result in more and more women ending up in hospital, damaged and at risk of death, because you want to ensure people who can perform abortion safely are scared away: ensuring, with your approval, that women who need abortions end up having them as unsafely as possible.


Again, how am I? When I'm talking about protecting the lives of both women and the unborn child inside them?


No, you're not, you just made that clear. You're talking about risking women's lives by driving them to highly unsafe illegal abortions, because you hate the idea that a woman can go to her ordinary healthcare provider and have an abortion safely and legally, without risk to her health. You're evidently well aware that your "harsh punishments" do not prevent abortions but only ensure they're far more hazardous to women.

The only person here who is excluding human beings is you. Because they somehow fall short of worth for you when it comes to life.

Coming from someone who regards any woman who wants an abortion as falling short of worth for life, that's... almost insulting, if it were possible to feel insulted by someone like you. You don't regard fetuses as worth saving: you're only interested in punishing women.