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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Critical Thinking and Avoiding Logical Fallacies

[Today's guest post by Nate Sheets in the first of a series. The next post in the series will arrive sometime next week.]

One pattern I often see online is that people shape their worldviews in black and white. It doesn't matter what the subject is: abortion, euthanasia, gay marriage, Dr. Who, the President, or pumpkin spice lattes--everyone seems to have an opinion, and that opinion seems to rarely declare: "there is grey area here!"

This is striking--at least in my mind--because at no other time have the majority of people (in the US) had virtually all of the wealth of human knowledge literally available at anytime, in virtually any place. We have the internet, with countless dissenting opinions and information, and yet we cling to our perspective with such clarity and confidence, often with little desire to dig into the thoughts of those whose opinions differ from ours. 



I have only recently begun to think critically using certain logical skills. While I have been an atheist for at least 5 years, and a pro-lifer since being a teenager, I only began to recently understand what it means to really think critically. What I found was a whole new world of perspective, leading me to fewer sure opinions, more "I-don't-know"s, and increased wonderment at the universe. 

Over the next few weeks, I will be working out the concept of logical fallacies with all of you. I am by no means an expert in logic or critical thinking, but one thing is clear to me when I read any abortion-related article, blog post, or comment thread on the internet: people revel in their own logical fallacies. If you point it out to someone, they likely will not care, or they will change the subject. I used to react this way myself when my own logical fallacies were pointed out, because I was not familiar with the big-picture of logic and critical thinking, nor was I appreciative of them. 

Assertions and Evidence
It is easier to assert without evidence than it is to assert with evidence. Because of this reality, we often employ logical fallacies to "enhance" our assertions. What ends up happening is that assertions are made that the other side can quite easily take down. So we scramble and move on to the next argument, or we try and enhance our position with another logical fallacy. (Sometimes we don't respond or we block people from our Facebook pages, because those things are easier to do than to abandon our original assertions.)

Politicians often rely on logical fallacies and making assertions without evidence. (From xkcd)
We need to make Arguments, not assertions. 
The difference between an argument and an assertion is probably obvious: arguments give reasons for why we believe our position. Logical fallacies come into play here as well--our brains often justify our positions using seemingly-reasonable lines of thought. However, when closely examined, these lines of fault end up being fallacious, and we have to start again. Unless we're on the internet, in which case we're already 200 comments in and it's too late. 

Examples

"Abortion is wrong."
This is an assertion. There is no argument, nor is there any evidence. In other words, it sucks.

"Abortion is wrong because God says so." 
This is an argument with unacceptable evidence. There are many gods, many versions of his supposed writings, and many interpretations of those said writings. It is not a compelling argument.

"Abortion is wrong. Many biologists and doctors believe this."
This is an argument with a logical fallacy. Do you know which one? We'll talk about it in the coming posts!

I am writing these posts just as much for me as for those of you who are interested in critical thinking. Personally, I enjoy having my worldview, my beliefs, and my strategies challenged. This series of posts isn't meant to reach out to pro-choicers, nor to every pro-lifer. My hope is that when you encounter a bad argument on either side, you can identify it and (hopefully!) correct it in an effective way. My bigger hope, however, is that you begin to see these logical fallacies in yourself. 

I invite other pro-lifers with more seasoned abilities to contact me with corrections, clarifications, or other thoughts you have. You can reach me by email at skepticalprolifer@gmail.com.

455 comments:

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JDC said...

This is the second time in about a month or so that I've seen a xkcd comic in a SPL blog post. I love this blog.

The Nun said...

Nate, I am looking forward to your articles.

Ann Morgan said...

Forced gestationers tend to engage in all sorts of complex arguments, when occam's razor dicates that all their positions (until fairly recently) are far better and more simply explained by wanting to punish people for sex.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Sorry, but Occam's Razor does not dictate "blithely ignore all evidence and instead maliciously fabricate an absurd ulterior motive that exempts pro-choicers from having to think about the moral implications of views or arguments outside their ideological comfort zone."


This "punish people for sex" crap is absolutely nothing more than, "if I pretend nobody else really believes abortion is murder, then I don't have to consider the possibility myself."

Gaiuse Strome said...

The naturalistic fallacy is my fave. Calvin, below, applies it liberally.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Example, please?

Ann Morgan said...

Umm, no. A 'belief' does not create reality. Some people 'believe' that killing animals for meat is murder. A schizophrenic might 'believe' that taking apart a doll is murder. So no, first of all, I don't have to consider 'beliefs' with no evidence, secondly, I don't have to consider 'beliefs' which are firstly explained in an overly complex way when a far simpler explanation explains it better, and secondly, is contrary to the facts. In this case, the rape exception that most pro-lifers offer is contrary the facts of to your claim of 'really believing that abortion is murder', but is in line with wanting forced gestation as a punishment for *voluntary* sex.

Ann Morgan said...

And your precious pro-lifers talk continual nonsense, they basically talk the talk but don't walk the walk when it comes to their supposedly 'valuing human life'. Case in point, the pro-lifers here who claim they would be willing to have their entire brain removed, to save 50 'tiny innocent vulnerable fertilized eggs' knowing full well that they will never be called upon to do so. Yet, when asked why they don't give up something far less valuable than their brain, such as 9 months of their life, to pregnancy (which they claim is no more difficult than eating a bag of doritos) in order to save a 'tiny innocent vulnerable frozen embryo' in an IVF facility, suddenly they are all full of excuses why they aren't doing that.


The only time they EVER value 'human life' is when it will punish others for having sex. They aren't letting homeless people into their houses. They aren't giving away all their extra money to feed starving 3rd world children. The only 'lives' they want to save are those they are using as hostages to try to control other people's sexual behavior.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Wow. So much nonsense to unpack.


First, of course believing abortion is murder doesn't in and of itself make abortion murder. My comment suggested nothing of the kind. I wasn't calling you out for disagreeing with that view, but for impugning its sincerity and choosing to swap a malicious straw-man in its place.


Second, I cannot fathom the depths of ideological prejudice it must take for someone to believe "abortion opponents actually want to punish women for sex" (which no, you don't have evidence for) is somehow simpler than "people who call abortion murder really think abortion is murder." In purporting to find the shortest distance between two points you're adding a wild detour to the trip while pretending you took a straight line.


Hint: the definition of "simple" is not "whatever reinforces my prejudices."


Third, the way your side spins the rape exception is especially demented. It doesn't show what you pretend it shows on any level. For one thing, it may be accepted by "most pro-lifers" if you're going by polls of the general public, but among activists and commentators I've certainly never seen a consensus for it. I don't make it an exception.


For another, there are numerous perfectly understandable explanations (well, perfectly understandable to those of us who aren't pro-choice zealots) for it that have nothing to do with your sex-persecution complex. For some it simply makes sense given that rape is the only scenario in which unwanted pregnancy is actually difficult to avoid. For some it's a pragmatic/strategic decision to focus on preventing the abortions that the general public is most open to reconsider (seriously, ever heard of political compromise?). And for some, banning rape abortions is an emotional bridge they simply can't bring themselves to cross.


These motives should be obvious to anyone without ideology in their eyes and malice in their hearts.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Sorry, but moral high ground doesn’t come that cheaply, the primary reason being that it doesn’t change the tiny details of (a) who’s making children they don’t want in the first place, and (b) who’s actually killing them and perpetuating that killing. Can anyone think of any other scenario where “I should be able to harm someone unless you aid me in some way” would be taken even remotely seriously as moral reasoning? If I forbid somebody from stealing my neighbor’s car, am I therefore obligated to let the would-be thief borrow my own?

Of course not. It’s preposterous. You are (intentionally) confusing the difference between abstaining from harm and going out of one’s way to do good. Our obligation to the former doesn’t necessarily entail the latter. And just because Person A won’t help Person B, it doesn’t give Person C a license to kill Person B. So even if this objection were to reveal that we're are somehow negligent in this area, it wouldn’t legitimize legal abortion.

It’s certainly true that all people, pro-lifers included, should do their part to help the sick and poor, to adopt, to help women in crisis pregnancies, etc. But, at the risk of ruining a perfectly good narrative by asking the obvious question, how do you know we already aren’t? Do you have any reason other than malice to suggest that pro-life Americans aren’t, say, adopting at a perfectly respectable rate compared to the rest of the population? Heck, how do we know pro-lifers aren’t adopting more than our “choice”-minded brethren? After all, there is plenty of reason to believe conservatives are generally more charitable than liberals:

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2006/11/who_really_cares.html

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0812/79888.html?hp=r5

Oh, and I have NEVER heard a pro-lifer claim pregnancy's "no more difficult than eating a bag of doritos." Honesty problem, Ann?

Ann Morgan said...

** "people who call abortion murder really think abortion is murder.**


So, what you're trying to say, is that these people who supposedly 'really think abortion is murder', simply stand outside a building where - according to what you claim they 'really think' - is full of psychopaths who are 'really tearing 3 year old toddlers apart', and rather than doing what *I* would do, if I heard of a building where 3 year olds were being ripped apart and charging in there with my gun to stop it, instead simply stand around outside the building carrying signs, and try to get government officials to pass laws to prevent it.


Sorry, not buying it. Either your pro-lifers are immoral and don't really care all that much about something they 'really think is murder'; or they are simpering cowards, or their real concern is punishing people for having sex. Most decent people will risk their lives to stop a 3 year old from being ripped apart, but people who are really concerned with punishing others for having sex will generally NOT risk their lives to do that, but instead try to get the government to point a gun at the other people.

Ann Morgan said...

**how do you know we already aren’t?**

Because when Myintx was asked why she wasn't offering to have extra frozen embryos implanted in her, she weaseled out of it by saying it was the 'parent's responsibility'

**And just because Person A won’t help Person B, it doesn’t give Person C a license to kill Person B.**


No person, A, B, or C, is obligated to allow another person to occupy their body, regardless of whether they need it for their 'very life'.

**Oh, and I have NEVER heard a pro-lifer claim pregnancy's "no more difficult than eating a bag of doritos."**

Again, that was stated by the pro-lifer, Myintx on this forum. I will expect an immediate apology from you for your accusation of dishonesty.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Good grief, this argument is nuts. And it's more sleazy "heads I win, tails you lose" garbage. When lone fringe pro-lifers do shoot an abortionist, it's supposedly prove we're all trigger happy violence lovers. But when we don't fit that malicious caricature, that condemns us too. Somehow.


Though I suppose we really shouldn’t be surprised that those who advocate the power to kill their own young can’t grasp that pro-lifers really do revere the sanctity of every human life and our duty as citizens to respect the rule of law, that we genuinely hold ourselves to higher standards than “the end justifies the means.” Though it does show you just how desperately far they’ll go to avoid grappling with challenging beliefs.

The US is a free society living under a constitutional government. In the social compact theory we’re founded on, forming such a government means the people cede the power to unilaterally punish injustice to representative institutions that will dispense justice impartially. By agreeing to live under government’s protection, we agree to submit all such questions to a political process whose outcomes we’ll obey no matter what.

As long as the process remains available to us, we don’t have the right to pick and choose which wrongs are evil enough to justify vigilantism, since even if the effect might be good in the short term, in the long term it damages the very concept of rule of law, setting a precedent for others to take the law into their own hands and eroding the people’s confidence in, and respect for, our system of government. No small-scale, temporary victory is worth starting down the road to anarchy.

Violence is only justified when the process breaks down and people no longer have a legal way of righting wrongs. The Founding Fathers didn’t cast off colonial rule because they simply hated King George’s policies, but because the King’s “long train of abuses” included crimes like taxing the colonies without allowing them representation in Parliament and dissolving colonial legislatures. Similarly, Holocaust comparisons fails for the simple fact that Nazi Germany was a police state without free elections. It’s not as if Germans could have passed a save-the-Jews referendum, or run an anti-genocide candidate against Hitler.

If these concepts are still stumping you, I suggest brushing up on some Civil War history. According to your logic, more than a few of the diplomatic and pragmatic judgments Lincoln made (considering compensated emancipation, hoping for a gradual state-level abolition of slavery, wanting a magnanimous reunion with the South, etc.) would mean he didn’t really care about slavery or really think it was a horrible injustice.

Calvin Freiburger said...

So it turns out the much-ballyhooed “facts” and “evidence” are nothing more than the lone comments of one random person on the Internet? Even assuming you’ve accurately characterized what Myintx said (which, given your…creative…approach to the truth so far, is a shaky assumption), nobody who sincerely values critical thinking should need it explained to them why it’s so blatantly fallacious to pretend they’re representative of the broader pro-live movement.

No person, A, B, or C, is obligated to allow another person to occupy their body, regardless of whether they need it for their 'very life’.

(1) You’re assuming your conclusion, rather than making a case for it. Why does no person have such an obligation? Where does the right you’re asserting come from? Even if there is such a right, how would it follow that lethal force is a just remedy for infringements on it? (2) It’s odd to classify pregnancy as an “occupation,” since most “occupied” people don’t knowingly create their own “occupiers” and put them precisely in said “occupied territory,” through no will or control whatsoever of the “occupiers” themselves.

Ann Morgan said...

You want to talk legal language? Ok. What is the seat of rights? Is it the brain? Or having human DNA and looking cute. If some mad scientist puts my brain in a racoon body, and puts the racoon's brain in my body, which has the rights? My brain (in the racoon body) or the racoon's brain (in my body).


If the brain is NOT the seat of rights, then were do rights exist? What part of the body? The left arm? Do amputees lose part of their rights? Cuteness?


I think you are unclear on the notion of what 'rights' are, anyways. 'Rights' do not simply descend from the sky in a golden light, and get magically granted to anything alive because it's 'human'. They are contractual and reciprocal in nature, and an embryo flat out cannot have rights, partly because it has no brain, partly because it's existence is violating the right of bodily autonomy of someone else, partly because it has no agency and is completely unable to choose NOT to kill (or otherwise do harm).

Ann Morgan said...

Oh, and btw, Lincoln did NOT in fact, care about eliminating slavery. His main concern was forcing the South to remain part of the US, and to pay an unfair share of taxes. Go study some real history.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Oh, so you'e a Civil War historical revisionist, too? Very revealing bit of context.

Calvin Freiburger said...

So, I can't help but notice that you're changing the subject to your theory of rights and say nothing more about the original subject being debated, which was your cockamamie conspiracy theories about pro-lifers' "true" motives. Seems kind of like a tacit admission of what a failure your arguments on that score were.

The seat of rights is in being a human being.

I think you are unclear on the notion of what 'rights' are, anyways.

One of us certainly is. But given that I've studied this stuff academically but haven't heard anything from you traceable to an educational source more distinguished than Tumblr, I'm gonna go out on a limb and guess it's not me.

'Rights' do not simply descend from the sky in a golden light, and get magically granted to anything alive because it's 'human'.

Actually, US constitutional law is based on a premise that (mocking rhetoric like "golden light" & "magically" aside) sounds very close to that. Read the Declaration of Independence lately? Read any John Locke?

The entire pro-choice theory of rights is circular, arbitrarily designed to give yourselves the answer you wanted in advance. You're not making a good-faith effort to objectively, rigorously apply a previously-embraced moral theory to the abortion question, then simply following wherever reason leads.

They are contractual and reciprocal in nature, and an embryo flat out cannot have rights, partly because it has no brain

You're assuming your conclusions again. WHY are rights "contractual and reciprocal in nature"? WHY is a brain a prerequisite for having rights?

partly because it's existence is violating the right of bodily autonomy of someone else



Assuming your conclusion yet again. "Pregnancy violates bodily autonomy" is an assertion that needs backing up, not a self-evident truth. And I already addressed some of the problems with this comparison (to which you didn't respond). The mother PUT her son or daughter there. In the vast majority of pregnancies, she "violated" HER OWN bodily autonomy. (After all, as you yourself admit, the embryo "has no agency.")

someone45 said...

If you don't want to punish women for having sex why do you support forced pregnancy and forced birth?


If a woman gets pregnant from having sex for a reason besides baby making how is it not a punishment to force her to carry to term?

expect_resistance said...

Yes, this x 1000

expect_resistance said...

Gestional slavery is not the moral high ground. Anti-choicers see pregnancy as a punishment for sex. For your last paragraph I've heard this type of sentiment over and over from anti-choicers like myintx for example. Calvin are you a Virgin?

expect_resistance said...

myintx thinks pregnancy is all sunshine, rainbows, and magical unicorns. (Excuse me while I barf on that one.)

expect_resistance said...

Do you think women who've been raped should be allowed to have an abortion?

expect_resistance said...

Great post well said!

expect_resistance said...

Just curious, can you type a response that isn't a four paragraph word salad?

expect_resistance said...

Ann is correct.

expect_resistance said...

Women have a constitutional right to abortion. Deal.

expect_resistance said...

Yep.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Probably when you say that women who don't want to be pregnant should 'blame nature' and not people such as yourself who want to ban abortion.

Ann Morgan said...

**The seat of rights is in being a human being.**

Nice assertion. But you haven't backed it up. Why is the seat of rights in being a 'human being' specifically, rather than a raccoon or a centipede? Did someone, somewhere, spin a roulette wheel to decide which species randomly got rights, and 'human beings' just happened to come up on top.

**But given that I've studied this stuff academically**

Kind of like how you studied the civil war, and yet know absolutely nothing accurate about it?

**The entire pro-choice theory of rights is circular, arbitrarily designed to give yourselves the answer you wanted in advance.**

Nope. Trying to claim that rights are somehow magical, and have nothing to do with the brain, yet at the same time, apply only to 'human beings' and not animals, is circular. As is the premise that it's possible to have a right to violate rights, such as the 'right' you want to give to the embryo to violate the mother's body. Sorry, no such thing.

**WHY are rights "contractual and reciprocal in nature"?**

Because they are not a magical golden light, they are negative in nature, and a social contract. The 'right to life' really means a 'right not to be murdered unjustly'. It does not mean a 'right to whatever you might need to sustain your life, if it belongs to someone else and they don't want to give it to you willingly. That means, you don't have a right to steal food to keep from starving to death, to break into someone's house to keep from freezing, or for an embryo to occup[y someone else's body.

When you violate someone's rights, by raping, stealing, or occupying their body, you break this contract, and thereby lose your rights. If someone exists in a state where they 'can't help' violating someone's rights, and/or are literally unable to choose not to injure or kill someone, they cannot have rights so long as they exist in that state. Whether or not they exist in that state intentionally is irrelevent.

WHY is a brain a prerequisite for having rights?

A brain is necessary (along with not violating someone else's rights' to have rights because objects and animals have no agency are unable to abide by a contract.

**In the vast majority of pregnancies, she "violated" HER OWN bodily autonomy.**

Not possible, your statement is the equivalent of claiming that masturbation or consensual sex are the same thing as rape, and you are trying to pretend that my body doesn't belong to me, so doing acts you don't like is somehow 'violating' it.

It's also irrelevent, even it it WERE possible. If I choose to cut off my left arm, it may or may not be a foolish choice. It isn't violating my own bodily autonomy, and doing so does not somehow magically give other people the right to cut off my right arm against my will.

**The mother PUT her son or daughter there.**

And I'm sure that you can show me videotapes of all these women stuffing children up their vaginas and PUTTING them into their uterus. You cannot PUT an object or person ANYWHERE, if the object or person doesn't even exist at the time you performed whatever action supposedly 'put' them in whatever location you claim they were 'put'.



I'd suggest you get your money back from whatever place you 'studied academically' at, as you lack some very basic concepts like a theory of mind, rights, and time binding ability.

expect_resistance said...

She gave you an example. Just curious as to your response.

Ann Morgan said...

**Sorry, but moral high ground doesn’t come that cheaply, the primary reason being that it doesn’t change the tiny details of (a) who’s making children they don’t want in the first place, and (b) who’s actually killing them and perpetuating that killing. Can anyone think of any other scenario where “I should be able to harm someone unless you aid me in some way”**


Sorry, YOUR 'moral high ground' doesn't come that cheaply. Pro-lifers want to do handwaving about how it's not 'their responsibility' to save all those 'tiny innocent vulnerable defenseless lives' by volunteering to get implanted with excess frozen IVF embryos.


Can YOU think of any other scenario where people would get away with the attitude: I will sit around and let a 'baby' die, because I didn't PUT it there, so it's not my responsibilty. Would a pro-lifer simply let a baby drown in a swimming pool, rather than volunteering to go in and fish it out, because they didn't put the baby in the pool?


Or do pro-lifers realise that embryos aren't really babies, so they have no real concern with 'saving their tiny very lives', but merely *pretend* that they are 'babies' when it comes to trying to force action on others?

expect_resistance said...

Calvin has no uterus or no skin in game. He should just shut up.

anotheranonymous said...

Pregnancy is a consequence of sex. A pretty normal and natural one. Not a punishment. Geesh.

anotheranonymous said...

I suppose a car accident is forced on the driver who chose to drive drunk?

Gaiuse Strome said...

Is having sex while in possession of a uterus a criminally negligent act?

Gaiuse Strome said...

STDs are a consequence of sex. A pretty normal and natural one. Not a punishment. Geesh.

anotheranonymous said...

Okay, the major injury is forced on the person who didn't wear a seatbelt. Going for actions have consequences here.

anotheranonymous said...

Well, you called it.

Gaiuse Strome said...

So the person who did not wear a seatbelt should be refused medical treatment as punishment?

anotheranonymous said...

Never said a pregnant woman should be refused medical treatment. Only the medical treatment that destroys the life she was part of creating.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Logical fallacies - you are tripping over your own feet to make them

anotheranonymous said...

Explain?

Gaiuse Strome said...

Pregnancy is a medical condition. A condition that can kill and maim. Abortion is safer than pregnancy.

anotheranonymous said...

I'm assuming you are considering STDs (and pregnancy) punishments. The idea of punishment assumes a punish-er. I am claiming they are consequences, which would be the result or effect of an action or condition.

anotheranonymous said...

Since you do not believe in "natural fallacies," there is no point in carrying on this part of the discussion.

Gaiuse Strome said...

If you force someone to remain pregnant against their will, to risk life and limb, you are punishing them yes.

And what if the pregnant person dies from the pregnancy that you would force her to gestate. Does she deserve the death penalty for having sex?

Gaiuse Strome said...

Pregnancy is a "natural" consequence of sex, therefore, it is good and women should be forced to remain pregnant against their will.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Are you familiar with fallacies of nature?

anotheranonymous said...

If she has an abortion and dies from it, did she deserve the death penalty for having an abortion?

Gaiuse Strome said...

You can't answer a question with a question.

anotheranonymous said...

No and yes. No, she does not - sex is not a criminal act. Yes she does - as part of the circle and cycle of life. To "deserve" something is beside the point.

expect_resistance said...

Abortion is as old as pregnancy. Having an abortion is being responsible if one doesn't want to remain pregnant.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Naturalistic fallacy again with the circle of life bullshit.


And you are effectively treating her as a criminal for having sex if you force her to "live" with the consequences of her action. Women do not forfeit their bodies, lives and health simply for having sex. You want to hold women strictly liable for having non procreative sex.

anotheranonymous said...

Okay, and here's the disagreement we cannot fix. She does not deserve punishment. Neither does the little human she created. If it were up to me, I would hold both women AND men liable for having non-procreative sex, yes. Why? Because I view sex as an intimate, connected, vulnerable, and committed action. And that within that domain it is healthy and good and whole and safe and wild. And that any child created within that space is one that is safe and cared for. A completely different worldview than yours. One which you cannot understand.

anotheranonymous said...

And it makes me sad that you can't. Because it reflects the horrible way we have distorted relationships and sex and humanity all to serve our own hedonistic individualism.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Men can't be held liable unless you also deny them their bodily autonomy for 9 months and then kill maim or injure them along with the woman.

And mindless embryos are not punished by abortion. They can't think, they can't feel, they have no self.

Women and men can suffer. Embryos not so much. It is beyond cruel to cause suffering to sentient sapient people for something that is less aware than an amoeba.

And again, you and your naturalistic fallacies. Sexual intimacy goes beyond mere reproduction. It exists for social bonding. People can be intimate without reproducing.

And why would you want a so called selfish couple to have a kid anyway? Doesn't that sort of defeat the purpose of your arguments?

Gaiuse Strome said...

You are living in a fantasy world. Sex is not purely for reproduction in humans. Stop romanticizing pregnancy and relationships. People like to have sex for fun and bonding. This need not involve reproduction. Grow up.

expect_resistance said...

You think women who have an abortion just be executed. One in three women have abortions including anti-choice women who argue against it. You're saying they deserve death for having an abortion?

Ann Morgan said...

Wow! So much nonsense to unpack. How about the following nonsense from you:

**Where does the right you’re asserting come from? Even if there is such a right, how would it follow that lethal force is a just remedy for infringements on it?**



Gee, I don't know. Where does the magical rights YOU are asserting come from, specifically the 'right to life' of something without a brain, and the 'right to another person's body'? You keep asserting all these magical rights for an embryo, based on it being a 'human being', as if that were some sort of magical state, without giving any sort of reason whatsoever why 'human beings' and not rocks or centipedes should have rights.

anotheranonymous said...

Sez who? :)

Gaiuse Strome said...

It is an evasive dodge. If you are going to involve yourself in a discussion, you should do so honestly, and address the comments, queries and concerns that are on the table.

If you refuse to do so, it is no longer a two way exchange, which is what discussion is all about.

anotheranonymous said...

There is so much to unpack in this argument and to be honest, I find it difficult to express it sometimes.

Men cannot be held liable; that does not mean they should not. A great deal of heartache, pain, and poor choices exist in the world because of men who fathered children that they abandoned. Hard to prove because the evidence is in people's lives and not necessarily measure-able or quantifiable. That does not mean it does not exist.

There is documented evidence that embryos and fetuses experience pain. But you didn't mention pain; you mentioned suffering.

From everything I've read and seen (and experienced), pain and suffering are very different. Neither are inherently bad or good; they are just things (although probably most of us would choose to do without either of them). Pain indicates physicality and the need
for change - for instance, break an arm and the pain indicates you have a problem that needs fixing.

Suffering, on the other hand, is the emotional response to the physical pain. Break an arm and there's often fear, anxiety that it won't repair, etc. That's the suffering part.

And I agree; suffering has to do with the sense of self, and we do not
know how early the sense of self develops. But probably far later than
embryonic and neonatal stage. That doesn't make it okay to kill a human, but that's ANOTHER huge argument to unpack. Obviously.

I would assume you know that there is choice involved in suffering. While a person may experience pain, and have to live within that pain, they do not necessarily have to "suffer." A person can live well and fully even with pain; it is when that person chooses to wallow and despair that suffering occurs. I'm sure you can think of people who have had pain and not suffered; likewise, you can probably think of people who haven't had pain (or had minimal pain) and suffered a great deal (perhaps more than necessary, at times - or, if not more than necessary, certainly more than SEEMS appropriate for a situation).

So, ultimately, pregnancy does not "cause" suffering. It's a person's choice to suffer through it or live within it.

Power of choice, yes?

I have had two very horrible pregnancies. Hated every minute of them. They caused pain, discomfort, and emotional distress - and I did suffer at times but found that when I chose to bear it hopefully instead, the suffering lost its misery. And before you say that the difference was my desire for these pregnancies, they were not both wanted.

I never said anything about "mere reproduction" being the only purpose for sexual intimacy. Certainly not. Recreation? Absolutely. Emotional bonding? Sure. But social bonding? Can we not "socially bond" over coffee? And if we choose to "socially bond" in a way that is riskier than just having coffee, can we not be held responsible for assuming the risks and consequences? Is that not the definition of adulthood and "being grown up" - assuming responsibility for our actions without inflicting our responsibility on someone else?

Finally, why would I want a so-called selfish couple to have a kid? I never said I wanted everyone to have kids, only that aborting kids is immoral. There's a big difference.

Postscript. I am very aware that there are a lot of philosophical assumptions in my statements. Likewise there are in yours. It would take essays to get into both of them and we still may not agree.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Took me a bit to track down where I said anything like that. I found this: http://liveactionnews.org/case-of-pregnant-brain-dead-mom-has-pro-aborts-unwittingly-making-concessions-about-sanctity-of-life/


As readers will see, I didn't say "women who don't want to be pregnant should blame nature," but rather people who resent the fact that men can't should blame nature. Nor did I suggest "nature’s unequal distribution of reproductive processes" somehow ends the debate in my favor; simply that it's an insufficient reason to end the debate in yours.


Try again.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Ah, nothing like rank sexism to settle lingering doubts about who to take seriously.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Pro-lifers want to do handwaving about how it's not 'their responsibility' to save all those 'tiny innocent vulnerable defenseless lives' by volunteering to get implanted with excess frozen IVF embryos.

Probably not the best example, since pro-lifers actually do this. Google “snowflake children” sometime. And when pro-lifers do adopt & promote adoption of IFV embryos, does your side credit us with doing what you say you want us to do? No, you attack that too, just like with your constant CPC demonizing.

Can YOU think of any other scenario where people would get away with the attitude: I will sit around and let a 'baby' die, because I didn't PUT it there, so it's not my responsibilty. Would a pro-lifer simply let a baby drown in a swimming pool, rather than volunteering to go in and fish it out, because they didn't put the baby in the pool?

Of course not. I didn’t say pro-lifers don’t have a moral obligation to save a life if they can; I was explaining the difference between being a good Samaritan and not being an aggressor.

merely *pretend* that they are 'babies' when it comes to trying to force action on others?

I’m still waiting for evidence of this assertion that doesn’t suck.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Gestional slavery is not the moral high ground.


Hysterical euphemisms do not a compelling argument make. They are, however, a handy indicator of ideological extremism and irrationality. Thanks!


Anti-choicers see pregnancy as a punishment for sex.


Again, repeating your made-up talking points over and over again doesn't magically make them true. What part of that are you struggling with?


I've heard this type of sentiment over and over from anti-choicers like myintx for example.


Frankly, what you claim to have heard carries little weight because you seem to have a problem accurately representing and interpreting things you disagree with.


Calvin are you a Virgin?


Yes. What of it?

Calvin Freiburger said...

as if that were some sort of magical state, without giving any sort of reason whatsoever why 'human beings' and not rocks or centipedes should have rights.

Wow. Did you just admit to not understanding why humanity warrants more innate respect than a rock? If that’s not a shining example of how ideology closes off the mind to thought, I don’t know what is.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Do you think women who've been raped should be allowed to have an abortion?


I already answered this in the "word salad" you apparently found too hard to read. The answer was no.

Calvin Freiburger said...

If you don't want to punish women for having sex why do you support forced pregnancy and forced birth?


Because I believe all human beings have a basic right to life, and killing them before birth is a grave evil. You're not really that unfamiliar with the basics of the abortion debate, are you?


Of course, if you want to be really accurate, I don't support "forced" pregnancy. I support a woman's right to use whatever means of pregnancy prevention she chooses, except methods that kill someone else. This is the same standard everybody's personal freedom is subject to -- “Your right to swing your arm ends where my nose begins," as the saying goes -- and I've never seen a convincing reason to carve out a special exemption for pregnant women to have their sons or daughters executed.


Yes, it's lamentable that once an unwanted child's been created, there's currently no non-lethal way to alleviate the situation. Yes, that could be described as de facto "forced birth" -- except for the fact that aside from cases of rape, the woman had it fully in her power to prevent putting herself in an unwanted pregnancy in the first place. But it's not as if pro-lifers can just conjure new medical technology out of thin air, and just because someone's in a position they don't want to be in doesn't mean ethics go out the door in deciding what to do about it.


If a woman gets pregnant from having sex for a reason besides baby making how is it not a punishment to force her to carry to term?
Because the purpose of denying her an abortion isn't to teach her a lesson, but to prevent an innocent human being's death.

Calvin Freiburger said...

I'm sorry, does someone need their reading dumbed down? Believe me, I wish your and your pals' responses weren't crammed with so many falsehoods and un-logic to dissect.

Calvin Freiburger said...

No they don't. No intellectually honest reading of the Constitution finds a right to abortion. Even many pro-choice legal scholars admit Roe v. Wade is little more than a sham: http://washingtonexaminer.com/the-pervading-dishonesty-of-roe-v.-wade/article/1080661

Calvin Freiburger said...

I applaud your patience with this crowd. It can't be easy.

Gaiuse Strome said...

p, that actually makes another part of my case for me: since certain
parts of the body function not solely for the woman’s health, but for
the health of her son or daughter, we could just as easily say they’re
jointly owned by mother and offspring during pregnancy.




You and your naturalistic fallacies.


Women have uteri, uteri were made for baybeez, therefore, baybeez are entitled to women's uteri.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Yeah...the quote in full:

I’m sorry guys can’t get pregnant, but your quarrel is with biology, not some patriarchal boogeyman. The fact that liberals have devolved feminism into a perpetual temper tantrum about nature’s unequal
distribution of reproductive processes isn’t a good enough reason to ignore the unborn life at stake.



Yeah ladies...you were made to gestate unborn babyeez...so you should be forced to...and you should blame nature, not those of us who would ban abortion.


Because, you know, we *never* override nature, no, not ever!


--------


I"m sorry guys, but prostate cancers are special. They should be protected. Treatment for prostate cancer should be illegal - but your quarrel is with *nature*, not those of us who want to force you to suffer.

expect_resistance said...

It's not sexism. Forced gestational slavery is sexism. I could care less if you take me seriously as I don't take what you say seriously.

expect_resistance said...

Ah poor baby.

expect_resistance said...

You can only argue with personal attacks calling me "hysterical, extreme, and irrational." None of this is true.

Forced-birthers are all about punishment for sex. This is not a made up argument as you claim.

I've argued with myintx personally at great lenght before, so yes this us not hearsay but personal experience.

For your last paragraph my condolences.

Lastly, I will have awesome mind-blowing sex, I will use birth control, and if I don't want to be pregnant have an abortion. You will not have any say over what goes in or comes out of MY uterus.

expect_resistance said...

Another personal attack that I can't make sense of your word salad. I'm using a phone to post on so I prefer shorter posts and I think people who are good writers don't need to type a long word salad to get their point across.

You clarified your statement that women who get pregnant as a result of rape, which is a horrible violent abusive act, should be forced to gestate a pregnancy. This is gestional slavery and a violent act against women. No woman should be forced to gestate and give birth against her will, especially a woman who was raped.

A friend of mine was kidnapped by gunpoint held against her will and raped for hours over and over again. You think someone who has endured such horrible violence should face more violence by being forced to gestate. I find this sick and revolting.

expect_resistance said...

Yet another personal attack. We are dumb liars? No. Like I said in my earlier post I'm reading this and posting on a phone. Good writers can make their argument in a sentance or two. I probably have more education than you do and I know I'm older and wiser than you are. Personal attacks don't make good arguments. You don't know me and have no basis to call me stupid, hysterical, or anything else. You dig?

Gaiuse Strome said...

Typing on the phone has helped me considerably. I tend to be overly verbose at times. Concise = good

expect_resistance said...

I agree. I have a computer but horrible wifi internet access. It's annoying. Hopefully I will get cable access this winter. :)

expect_resistance said...

No.

expect_resistance said...

"Patriarchal boogeyman.....feminism is a perpetual temper tantrum" that's eff'd up. Thanks for posting Calvin's post.

People override nature all of the time. Cancer treatments, treating diseases, fracking the earth for oil, etc, etc, etc. I for one was not put on this earth to breed. Screw that.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Biology is not destiny.. Unless you are born with a uterus

expect_resistance said...

It would be more beneficial for society to adopt a child from foster care that needs a home than a "snowflake baby." I think this would be a more selfless act that would do more good in the world.

expect_resistance said...

Applause!

expect_resistance said...

Like the saying goes, "if men could get pregnant abortion would be a sacrament." (Again another awesome post glad you are here.)

expect_resistance said...

A zygote, embryo, fetus is not guilty or innocent and certainly not a person. On the other hand a woman is a person and like men have bodily autonomy. She has the civil right to decide to procreate or not, to carry a pregnancy or not. She is a person with all the rights of personhood a ZEF is not. There is no obligation for women to procreate and certainly no obligation to do so against her will.

expect_resistance said...

Abortion existed and was legal during the Colonial period. Who knows why it wasn't written into the constitution at the time. Maybe because it was legal at the time they felt no need to specifically codify it in the constitution. Some of the founding fathers remarked about the wisdom of Native American women to control their fertility by plants and herbs. Abortion had existed for thousands of years. If abortion is made illegal in the U.S. abortion will not seize to exist. Women like me will help to restart the Jane Collective and help women get safe abortions.

Of course women without privilege and access will be forced to gestate against their will or seek an illegal unsafe abortion or self abort. These options are more medically harmful to women.

Ann Morgan said...

Obviously, but the goal here is not to help real people who have real suffering and needs, but to use the pretend needs of zefs as an excuse to control people.

Ann Morgan said...

I've already given you evidence, the fact that you disagree with it doesn't mean it sucks. But here's some more evidence. NOBODY in our society, including pro-lifers, treats 'tiny innocent vulnerable defenseless fertilized eggs' as if they actually thought they were 'babies' EXCEPT when pretending that they are 'babies' allows them to punish other people for having sex.


When people have REAL babies, and the babies get sick, almost all people will engage in frantic action, rushing to doctors, selling their houses, going across the country to see specialists, anything to keep their baby from dying of natural causes. If the baby does die, the parents grieve for a long time and have a funeral.


Yet, NOBODY treats zefs like this. 80% of those tiny innocent vulnerable fertilized eggs that pro-lifers claim are 'babies' either die before, or shortly thereafter implanting on the uterus. Where are all the pro-lifers selling their houses and quitting their jobs and frantically seeing specialists in another state to prevent all those precious zef 'babies' from dying? Where are the pro-lifers bringing bloody tampons in for funerals and burying them in a cemetery. Where are all the tears for months and years for those bloody tampons?


The assertion that 'miscarriage is natural and abortion is not' is bullshit. People with REAL babies (unless they are the minority who are sociopaths) do not react with no concern whatsoever when the REAL babies die of 'natural causes'. The fact that pro-lifers do not engage in the frantic actions I described, when their precious zefs miscarry is proof that they do not regard the zefs as the same thing as 'babies', regardless of what they claim. The ONLY time they pretend the zefs are 'babies' is when doing so gives them a justification for punishing other people for having sex.

Ann Morgan said...

Oh yeah. Also, a healthy white infant is a valuable commodity, and very expensive in terms of time and money to adopt. If the pro-lifers actually wanted to 'save the babies' they would probably end up with an older child, a non-white child, or a child with illness or disabilities. Which they most emphatically do not want themselves, despite insisting that everyone else must take on such 'responsibility'. If they want a healthy white infant, a 'snowflake baby' is probably cheaper for the same reason that a parrot egg is far cheaper than a hand-fed fledging baby parrot.

Gaiuse Strome said...

The excuse given is that *intellectually and factually*, zygotes have the same value as infants, its just that its really really hard to cry over lost zygotes. But since PLers are all about "science", zygote should be granted the same rights as infants.

expect_resistance said...

Fantastic post! I've brought up tampon funerals to myintx and other antis. They brush off this idea with telling me I'm a sick person. Yet they don't get the point that many fertilized eggs fail to implant and are sloughed off in a woman's cycle.

Ann Morgan said...

Which is absolute bull. If they really thought that zygotes were 'babies' then it should not be hard to cry over them. Either that, or are they claiming that they wouldn't cry over their month old newborn dying in the crib?


As for 'science', using pure science, there is not such a thing as rights. You can't take out the 'rights' from a person and weigh or measure them, or even perform mathematical equations on them that predict physical reality. It's a social and ethical construct. And their personal behavior regarding their own zefs (vs other people's zefs) is inconsistent with a social or ethical belief that it is actually a 'baby'. If you actually, really believe that something is a 'baby', you don't have to SEE it in order to cry about it. Case in point, suppose I performed a magicians trick, and convinced you that I had put a baby in a large box. Then I put the box through a woodchipper. You'd start screaming, because you really believed that a real baby was dead. Even though you didn't really see the baby, you just saw a box go into a woodchipper. But you really BELIEVED the baby was there, so reacted accordingly.

Ann Morgan said...

**They brush off this idea with telling me I'm a sick person.**


Ad hominem fallacy, in order to avoid answering the question. I'm not impressed by people who refuse to answer the hard questions.


Oh, and I'm sure they DO get the point. They just don't want to address it, because it exposes the fallacy in their claim that the zef is a 'tiny innocent vulnerable defenseless real human baby'.

Ann Morgan said...

**A pretty normal and natural one. Not a punishment.**


sorry, no. Punishment is a subjective concept. Whether or not it is 'natural' is irrelevent. Anything you force a person to do against their will, such as remaining pregnant, is a punishment. It doesn't matter how cute you think an embryo is, if the person doesn't want it, it is a punishment.


How about a nice cup of tea? A good brand? Steaming hot? Served on a nice saucer with enamelled flowers and a halo of light around it, like the picture of the baby somewhere on this site? Sound good? Tea is a natural beverage and drinking is a natural process, right? Only thing is, for me, drinking tea is a punishment. My father used to force me to drink tea when I was sick, and spank me when I wouldn't drink it. So don't babble at me about cute, normal, or natural. If the person doesn't want it, and you force it on them, it's a punishment, pure and simple.

Ann Morgan said...

Did someone force her to get the abortion? If not, your question is nonsense.

Ann Morgan said...

**Neither does the little human she created.**

First of all, it's impossible to 'punish' something without a functioning brain. Secondly, the embryo is violating her body, claiming that she is 'punishing' it by removing it from her body is like claiming you are 'punishing' a toddler who wandered off with your wallet by taking your wallet back from them. And, btw, this would also apply if the toddler took something that they needed for their 'very life', such as food, if they were starving. If it's your food, you are not under an obligation to let the toddler take it without consent, no matter how cute people think the toddler is.

**If it were up to me, I would hold both women AND men liable for having non-procreative sex, yes. Why? Because I view sex as an intimate, connected, vulnerable, and committed action.**

Your 'views' are firstly contrary to evolutionary reality, since human beings are constructed to have and want sex many more times than they can reproduce, and at times when they are not fertile. Secondly, your particular emotions regarding sex don't dictate other people's rights. Thirdly, people can and do have intimate sex without having or intending to have children.

**And that any child created within that space is one that is safe and cared for. A completely different worldview than yours. One which you cannot understand.**



I understand that you want to use sad feelies about children to control other adults who have sex in a way you don't want them to have it. And unless children can keep themselves alive without adults, starting from being able to gestate outside a uterus and ending with being able to perform all the jobs necessary to keep them alive from farmer to truck driver to doctor, the world is going to continue to be run for the convenience of adults, not children.

Ann Morgan said...

**I never said I wanted everyone to have kids, only that aborting kids is immoral.**


You want to create a false dichotomy in which everyone else is forced to choose between either complying with your particular views on sex, or being punished for failing to comply with them by having a child they don't want.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Wrong person. Repaste that to the person who said it.

Ann Morgan said...

And hedonistic individualism is evil by definition because why, exactly?


Defining it as evil is nonsense. I'll explain why. Let's say I have a cake. According to you, it's 'hedonistic individualism' for me to enjoy eating the cake myself, and in order to be 'unselfish', I should instead give the cake to someone else, and be miserable by not getting to enjoy my cake.


Only thing is, wouldn't it ALSO be 'hedonistic individualism' for that other person, to then eat the cake, thus making THEM evil, by your contention?


About the only way to NOT be evil, by your absurd standard, would be for NOBODY to get to eat the cake, unless, like a zef, they had no brain and were thereby unable to enjoy the cake. Which I guess is pretty much your point, you want every real person to be miserable, and use the pretend suffering of brainless zefs as an excuse.

Ann Morgan said...

**If you’re seriously stumped as to what sets human beings apart from other species, if you see no difference between animals and the one species capable of rationality and moral reflection, then your ignorance and prejudices are far beyond my abilities to heal**


You are talking contradictory crap. You have claimed that the seat of rights is NOT in the brain, but rather in 'being a human being'. Now you claim that our abilities of 'rationality and moral reflection' are what give us our rights.


Explain this: how does 'being a human being' give one the ability of 'rationality and moral reflection' in some way that does NOT involve our brain?


God, you're dumb.

expect_resistance said...

I agree. I take it you've had the "pleasure" of arguing with myintx. I'm using her as an example of antis I've come across that live in forced birth fantasy land. Their arguments are based in magical thinking.

expect_resistance said...

Yes and yes!

expect_resistance said...

Truth.

expect_resistance said...

Someone at MJ told me I was anti-science because I'm pro-choice. I had a laugh over that one.

P.s. A raccoon just ran by me as I was typing this.

expect_resistance said...

I'm sorry for what your father did to you. What you've said is truth. I thank you for your candor.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Yeah. I ran into those asshats.

Gaiuse Strome said...

http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/cat_proximity.png

Gaiuse Strome said...

http://i.imgur.com/Lq7PkkD.jpg

Jennifer Starr said...

Why is that sexist?

someone45 said...

You believe all human beings have a right to life, but a zygote/embryo/fetus is not a human being. It is a developing potential human being.


No one should be forced to donate any part of their body to sustain the life of another, but yet you support forcing women to do it for what is only a potential human.


Why do you want to give rights to the embryo that no actual human on this planet has? Why don't you support forced organ donation as well?


Regardless of your reason for wanting to force her to stay pregnant, if you succeed you are still ruining her life and are punishing her.


Also your ethics don't get to govern how I live my life. You can live your life by your values but stop telling other people how to live.

Jennifer Starr said...

She's right. The main impetus behind the US Civil War was preservation of the Union, not about stopping slavery.

someone45 said...

When unwanted pregnancy is a punishment. How can it not be a punishment when it is going to disrupt the woman's life for a minimum of 9 months? Pregnancy isn't nine months of fun.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Yeah ladies...you were made to gestate unborn babyeez...so you should be forced to...and you should blame nature, not those of us who would ban abortion. Because, you know, we *never* override nature, no, not ever!

Um, you do realize that people who actually click on the link can see for themselves that your characterization is a lie, right? I already explained my “you should blame nature” line, and nowhere in that article do I say or imply anything like women “were made to gestate unborn babyeez.” Whether you continue to be intentionally dishonest will make clear what kind of person you are and whether any productive discussion with you will be possible.

I”m sorry guys, but prostate cancers are special. They should be protected.

Biological Know-Nothingism, check. It never ceases to amaze me how many on your side would rather make themselves sound like snide, ignorant fools than make the slightest admission that the world isn’t as simplistic as you want it to be.

Calvin Freiburger said...

I've already given you evidence, the fact that you disagree with it doesn't mean it sucks.

No, the fact that you’re taking your prejudiced, rambling inferences and calling them “evidence” is what means it sucks. You have offered nothing that would be compelling to anyone who doesn’t already share your fanaticism.

NOBODY in our society, including pro-lifers, treats 'tiny innocent vulnerable defenseless fertilized eggs' as if they actually thought they were 'babies' EXCEPT when pretending that they are 'babies' allows them to punish other people for having sex.

I see you’re conveniently leaving out those who protest the destruction of embryos to obtain stem cells. Or protest IVF because it creates so many human lives only to dispose of them. Or who actually do adopt snowflake babies. Or who protest aborting your child for having a disability. Or who mourn or even hold funerals for children lost to miscarriage.

When people have REAL babies, and the babies get sick, almost all people will engage in frantic action, rushing to doctors, selling their houses, going across the country to see specialists, anything to keep their baby from dying of natural causes.

What rock are you living under? Ever heard of prenatal health guidelines? Fetal surgery? In the average pregnancy (i.e., one where Mom hasn’t marked her kid for death), the standard reaction to fetal ailments is no different than how we treat anyone else — that is, proportional to our ability to know there’s a problem and to do something about it.

Yet, NOBODY treats zefs like this.

Ooh, a caps-lock “NOBODY”? Serious business here. Except not really, since a few seconds with Google debunks it.

Where are all the pro-lifers selling their houses and quitting their jobs and frantically seeing specialists in another state to prevent all those precious zef 'babies' from dying? Where are the pro-lifers bringing bloody tampons in for funerals and burying them in a cemetery.

Inasmuch as I’m quickly losing patience explaining things to a bigot who’s clearly not going to consider anything she doesn’t want to hear anyway, here’s an interesting recent article on the subject that normal people reading this may find informative: http://thefederalist.com/2014/08/12/yes-people-believe-abortion-is-murder/

Let’s cut to the chase, Ann. None of the crap you’ve spewed here has been anything resembling “proof.” What you’re really doing is conjuring up a never-ending set of hoops a pro-lifer must jump through just to get the simple decency of being acknowledged as sincere. You’re looking out not for the truth but for your own ego. So rabid is your bigotry that you don’t even allow for the possibility that people you disagree with might simply be mistaken, rather than evil boogeymen with secret agendas.

I don’t know how or how long you’ve had this fanaticism and persecution complex drummed into you, but I see they’ll be very difficult to break free of. I wish you luck in doing so someday.

Calvin Freiburger said...

That wasn’t the point. Her point is that pro-lifers actually are doing what Ann accused us of not doing and claimed (apparently insincerely, based on her latest reply) we should be doing.

Calvin Freiburger said...

You can only argue with personal attacks

I merely responded with candor once I saw you and your cohorts setting a tone of malicious, dishonest hostility. If you instead made an effort toward civil, good-faith discussion of where we disagree, I would have given you the benefit of the doubt.

This is not a made up argument as you claim.

Then where’s the evidence?

yes this is not hearsay but personal experience.

With ONE PERSON. Gee, for someone who claims to be so educated, you’re stumped by awfully simple logical concepts.

For your last paragraph my condolences.

No condolences necessary. It’s hardly a tragedy to those of us who aren’t obsessed with sex and worship it like some golden calf.

Calvin Freiburger said...

I think people who are good writers don't need to type a long word salad to get their point across.

Well, succinct didn’t get through the thick skulls in the crowd, so I tried going a little more in depth to correct the many errors and distortions you and your friends offered and preempt further misconceptions. Apparently that was a wasted effort too, since it’s not the method of delivery that’s the problem. The problem is that none of you are willing to process ideas and arguments you don’t want to hear.

No woman should be forced to gestate and give birth against her will, especially a woman who was raped.

True, but until medical technology gives us a way to get out of an unwanted pregnancy without killing an innocent third party, that’s the least wrong, least harmful options.

You think someone who has endured such horrible violence should face more violence by being forced to gestate.

Millions of pregnant women would take issue with your characterization of pregnancy and childbirth as “violence.”

I find this sick and revolting.

You’ve also been parroting Ann’s “punishment for sex!” crapola, and part of her inane reasoning is that favoring a rape exception is proof of that ulterior motive. So according to her logic, not favoring the rape exception is evidence against her proposition. Are you willing to connect the dots she refuses to?

Calvin Freiburger said...

A zygote, embryo, fetus is not guilty or innocent

How silly. Of course he or she is innocent. Unless you believe they can somehow will themselves to be conceived or consciously target women for “occupation.”

and certainly not a person.

You’re assuming your conclusion. Again. I’m tired of repeating myself, so could you at least try to think as we go along?

Calvin Freiburger said...

a zygote/embryo/fetus is not a human being.

Since this is a thoroughly discredited scientific falsehood, and the rest of your comment is predicated on it, I don’t see why I should take is seriously.

Calvin Freiburger said...

We are dumb liars?

Well, I’ve repeatedly identified you making dumb arguments and telling lies, and if it quacks like a duck…

I probably have more education than you do and I know I'm older and wiser than you are.

If that’s true, then why have you gotten so many facts wrong, and when do your arguments progress above the level of “petulant high-schooler?”

Personal attacks don't make good arguments.

Then why do you and your pals make so many of them? Unprovoked, no less?

Calvin Freiburger said...

I wasn’t disputing that. I was disputing Morgan’s historically illiterate claim about Lincoln didn’t care about eliminating slavery. Good grief, learn to read.

Calvin Freiburger said...

You are talking contradictory crap. You have claimed that the seat of rights is NOT in the brain, but rather in 'being a human being'. Now you claim that our abilities of 'rationality and moral reflection' are what give us our rights.

No, I said they’re indicators that point to something fundamentally unique and special about humanity (I grant it’s a somewhat subtle distinction, and pro-choicers tend not to do well with nuance). There are countless examples of animal brains to look at, yet none of them produce morality or rationality? Then humanity must be the key variable. Again, it may be lost on you, but here is further elaboration on the subject: http://blog.secularprolife.org/2013/08/on-brain-requirement-for-personhood.html

God, you're dumb.

It may seem that way to a simpleminded bigot. Fortunately, it’s never too late to aspire to something better. The choice is yours whether you’d rather sincerely think about concepts outside your comfort zone, or simply indulge your psychological need to hate us.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Your knee-jerk repetition of “naturalistic fallacy” might be an easy way to look smart for rubes, but it’s not a substitute for refutation (neither is sarcastic misspelling). She’s the one who brought up ownership, which implies a natural component, but it seems neither of you want to tease out the full ramifications of your own arguments.

And if you’ve got a better basis for human rights than natural-law theory, let’s hear it. I’m getting a little tired of pro-aborts coasting through the debate without showing their work.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Abortion existed and was legal during the Colonial period. Who knows why it wasn't written into the constitution at the time.

This is hilarious. You boast about education and wisdom, then show you haven’t the slightest idea what you’re talking about. First, the alleged legality of abortion around the the time in no way establishes a constitutional right to abortion. Hell, you even admit “it wasn’t written into” or “specifically codif[ied]” in the Constitution! Not giving a damn about whether anything you say is true may be liberating, but you might want to consider how easy it is to embarrass yourself when you come across someone who isn’t faking it.

Second, your claim that it was legal during the colonial period isn’t true either. It was generally illegal under common law after quickening, laws in (at least) Virginia and Delaware specifically criminalized it, and abortion’s de facto legal status before quickening was ambiguous not because of any belief in a “right” to abort, but because they were so hard for prosecutors to confirm. James Wilson, whose legal scholarship the rest of the Founders typically recognized as authoritative, said: “human life from its commencement to its close, is protected by the common law. In the contemplation of law, life begins when the infant is first able to stir in the womb. By the law, life is protected not only from immediate destruction, but from every degree of actual violence, and in some cases, from every degree of danger.”

Abortion had existed for thousands of years. If abortion is made illegal in the U.S. abortion will not end.

Utterly pointless statements. Theft, rape, torture, molestation, and infanticide have existed for thousands of years too, and making them illegal didn’t end them either.

Women like me will help to restart the Jane Collective and help women get safe abortions.

Bragging about a desire to participate in black-market murder of people’s own sons and daughters? Simply evil.

someone45 said...

It seems as if it is only the anti-choice crowd that considers it to be a falsehood and you only provide links to more anti-choice sites to prvoes your point.


The zygote/embryo/fetus cannot survive unless it is attached to its host and the woman should have the right to decide if she is going to risk her life to carry it to term.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Thank you for admitting how little you read on the subject. Do you think that all the embryology textbooks were secretly written by "the anti-choice crowd"? Do you think Peter Singer's an anti-choice plant?

someone45 said...

So when I took all my biology classes and a genetics class and the professors called the embryo "life form" a "potential" human you are saying they know nothing?

Gaiuse Strome said...

Your explanation is inadequate. It's clear that you believe that biology = destiny for those born with uteri. And that such a "destiny" should be enforced by law, should the uterus owner find themselves pregnant. In which case you tell them to take the complaint to *nature* and not you, who wants to force the pregnant person to remain subservient to biology.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Well Calvin, tell us, are unborn humans entitled to women's bodies? If so, why? Natural law???

someone45 said...

An embryo is a potential human because there is nothing to guarantee that it will make it to term, even if it is wanted. Pregnancy is nine months so the zygote/embryo/fetus can develop into a viable human.

I don't need you to be convinced about what my professors called it.


I think I would have laughed at them if they called it a fully developed viable human as you people seem to think it is.

mariel said...

wow, you sound incredibly misogynist. pregnancy equals subservience to female biology, huh?


thanks, asshole.

Calvin Freiburger said...

I think we've just found the source of your misunderstanding.


"Making it to term" and "viable" are not part of the definitions of "human being." If it were, countless people who are terminally ill or on life support wouldn't be human beings either.


Also, I never said embryos are "fully developed" or "viable." Tell me, is seeing things in what you read that just aren't there a recurring problem with you? It seems like the sort of thing that would warrant professional help.

someone45 said...

The difference though is that people on life support aren't attached to the body of another person. They are attached to a machine. Now I know that you people view women as incubators so I guess that kind of makes sense for you to compare them to a machine.

Also you might not have said embryos are fully developed or viable but many other anti-choicers have.

Seriously why can't you people stay out of the life of women who you don't know. You all claim you want small government but yet you want to regulate the body of women.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Something wrong with your reading comprehension?

FORCED pregnancy = subservience to biology. As in...you must remain pregnant against your will because you are woman and woman was designed by nature/god to make babies.

^is objectification, and it is deeply misogynist.

fiona64 said...



Calvin are you a Virgin?

Yes. What of it?


Quelle surprise.

A male virgin wants to dictate the behaviors of sexually active women.

You have more issues than National Geographic, dude.

fiona64 said...

It’s hardly a tragedy to those of us who aren’t obsessed with sex and worship it like some golden calf.

I'm sorry no one wants to f**k you, Calvin. Really, I am. But you know what? My husband and I will have sex swinging from the chandeliers if we feel like it. And if my tubal ligation fails? There'll be an abortion ... whether some little prude named Calvin approves or not.

fiona64 said...

Please explain how being forced to remain pregnant against one's will (and perhaps contrary to one's health) is anything other than a punishment. I'll wait.


No love, a woman who was nearly killed by a wanted pregnancy and will not risk that again (and no, I won't be celibate just to satisfy your voyeuristic beliefs that I should do so)

fiona64 said...

It must really frustrate you that you can't just ban us here for presenting information that contradicts your nonsense ...

someone45 said...

What part of you don't get to tell other women how to live their life are you struggling with?


You do view women as incubators otherwise how do you explain the fact that you support gestational slavery.


No matter how many times you say it the embryo does NOT have a right to the woman's body. It is her choice and she can remove it from her body if she wants. It has no right to her resources and body and life unless she agrees to risk her body and health for it.

fiona64 said...

Pregnancy is 14 times more dangerous than abortion. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22270271

I do, however, notice that you deflected the question.

fiona64 said...

I would hold both women AND men liable for having non-procreative sex

What are you going to do? Peep in at windows and screech if you see people using contraception?

mariel said...

problem is there is nothing wrong with my reading comprehension.



you believe pregnancy is a form of slavery. not for all women, but for some.


well aren't you lucky not to be "born with uteri" as you call it! what dreaful, enslaving organs.


[your view is deeply misogynist. think about it.]

fiona64 said...

There is documented evidence that embryos and fetuses experience pain.

Oh, FFS. There is no such thing, *especially* where embryos are concerned. Until myelination is complete, which does not happen until approximately 29 weeks' gestation, the fetus is *incapable* of experiencing pain. The system that allows it to do so does not exist. And, in case you missed the memo, no one is getting an abortion at 29 weeks' gestation absent medical necessity.

Christ on the cross; is biology no longer *taught*?

fiona64 said...

Yep. Pregnancy, according to myintx, is like having a teenager eating Doritos on the couch. It's just how life goes and it's no big deal to clean the orange crud up.

fiona64 said...

Calvin thinks we're nothing but the meat around our uteruses and should be forced to gestate regardless of circumstances.

This is because Calvin is an angry little boy who couldn't get laid in a women's prison with a fistful of pardons, and so all women should be punished for daring to have sex with a) men who are not him and b) perhaps without intent to procreate.

Calvin also appears to believe that pregnancy is all fairy farts and ice cream ... and when it isn't, well, the woman should just be willing to die. Because Calvin is a misogynist.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Pregnancy is a form of slavery if forced. It isn't rocket science.

And you and Calvin are arguing that uterus owners must NOT be permitted to override biology through abortion.

fiona64 said...

the woman had it fully in her power to prevent putting herself in an unwanted pregnancy in the first place.

Allow me to acquaint you with something that you clearly do not know, Calvin: all forms of contraception, including surgical sterilization, have *known failure rates.*

fiona64 said...

If it were, countless people who are terminally ill or on life support wouldn't be human beings either.

Oh, here's the problem: You don't know the difference between a born, sapient, sentient person and a zygote.

Much is now explained.

Gaiuse Strome said...

What is Calvin...a fourth wave feminist?

fiona64 said...

FFS, Calvin. A zygote/embryo/fetus is neither guilty nor innocent. It is incapable of *either* state.

Personhood is a legal concept; it attaches at birth.

I guess you missed that in civics class; revisit the 14th Amendment if you're confused, okay?

mariel said...

Please keep discussion classy. Use critical thinking, not insults, to further debate.
Acting like an incensed ape isn't cute.

fiona64 said...

Funny ... the only dumb liars I ever see here are the anti-choice.

fiona64 said...

Acting like an incensed ape isn't cute.

You tell me not to use insults, and in the next sentence you write this?

Wow. You just broke my irony meter.

Especially since pointing out that someone clearly has issues is NOT an insult.

fiona64 said...

You are making a lot of assumptions about Gaiuse. And it's make me laugh.

fiona64 said...

I've already been refuting your hateful crap ad infinitum on this thread

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!


Seek help for your misogyny and anger issue, Calvin.

I don't hate you; I pity you.

mariel said...

Actually, I argued nothing of the kind. Making assumptions, aren't you?


I merely read your proclamation that "pregnancy is a form of slavery" and called you out on your misogny.
At least you honestly admit that you do believe female biology is a form of subservience. That's nothing to be proud of though.

Gaiuse Strome said...

*if forced*

Arguing by misquotation is extremely tacky and dishonest. Bless your heart, dear.

mariel said...

Just trying to help you argue with class. : )

Gaiuse Strome said...

I love it when they accuse me of wanting to fuck and run.

Why do you think I hang around RHRC?

I get more ass than a toilet seat!!eleventy111

Gaiuse Strome said...

Then stup arguing by misquotation. That is not classy, dear.

mariel said...

not a misquotation. you don't believe 100% of pregnancies are enslavement. Just some of them. [um, yay?]

mariel said...

i didn't misquote. does it upset you that a woman calls you out on your errors? uh oh...

Calvin Freiburger said...

Misogyny?

If you don't like being called a liar, then I suggest you stop lying.

Gaiuse Strome said...

Here's the thing, sweetie...there are many people who are born with uteri who do not identify as women. They are LGBTQ etc. They identify as transgender, genderqueer etc. I use the term 'uterus owner' in order to include them.


Now, they do not view 'biology as destiny', and nor should they. You, and your PL buddies, would happily force such a person to remain pregnant against their will simply because they were born with a uterus


That is reproductive objectification. That is reducing a person to a body part. To ignore their free-will, and to tell them that they *must* be subservient to the biological function of their bodies.


We humans override biology *all the time*. Have you ever been to a doctor? So, explain to me why those born with a uterus cannot be permitted to override biology, and why they must be subservient to the contents of their uteri?

Gaiuse Strome said...

you don't believe 100% of pregnancies are enslavement. Just some of them.




Yeah. That should be obvious. If you force someone to labour on behalf of another, to risk life and limb on behalf of another or the state, to treat their bodies as property, you are in effect enslaving them.


Fiona nearly died to give birth to her son. That was *her* choice. If she had been forced to do so, that would have been slavery.

Calvin Freiburger said...

No, it's not clear to anyone who actually read what I wrote. You keep repeating yourself without backing up your assertion -- in the same breath that you complain about "inadequate explanations," no less!


Again, that you continue to keep intentionally lying says it all.

Calvin Freiburger said...

See my actual words, liar.

Calvin Freiburger said...

That's the legal definition of murder. But murder is neither exclusively nor primarily a legal concept. It's a philosophical/moral/ethical one that denotes unjust killing.


"Abortion isn't murder because the law currently doesn't recognize it as such" is so blindingly circular that I can't believe we're actually debating it, but I guess your intellectual faculties aren't quite capable of grasping that.

Calvin Freiburger said...

You're seriously presenting "I know you are but what am I" as an argument? On behalf of pro-lifers everywhere, I thank you for making your side look like petulant eight-year-olds.

Calvin Freiburger said...

And you continue to indict your own maturity.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Nice try, but as you know, I've never banned anyone "for presenting information that contradicts" my side.

Calvin Freiburger said...

It's funny how you rant stuff like this yet (a) don't know why nobody but your fellow fanatics takes you seriously, and (b) expect people to believe "presenting evidence" had anything to do with why you were banned.

Jennifer Starr said...

I was told by an male anti-choicer not too long ago that some men are upset that they can't carry babies--and then he called me cruel when I wished him a pregnancy of his own. *snort*

Calvin Freiburger said...

I never said otherwise.


Reading comprehension, people.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Oh, here's the problem: Fiona makes crap up about arguments she's too lazy to engage.

Jennifer Starr said...

We saw your actual words. Hence our reply.

Calvin Freiburger said...

I've already addressed all of this. You're refusing to counter any of it, and just restating your position in the hopes that will magically make it valid.


Better luck next time.

Jennifer Starr said...

If they are unwanted what would you call them?

Jennifer Starr said...

I don't see how that's misogynistic at all.

Calvin Freiburger said...

I seem to recall correcting your ignorant nonsense about the 14th Amendment, too. Pity it didn't take. The short version: CITIZENSHIP attaches at birth. Citizenship =/= personhood. A Russian visiting the US wouldn't be a citizen and therefore couldn't do things like vote in US elections, but he wouldn't somehow stop being a person just by setting foot on US soil.

Calvin Freiburger said...

An unborn human is entitled to the parts of his or her mother's body that conception that function to sustain his or her gestation.


This does not mean, as your incessant, inane "biology=destiny" bleatings seem to pretend, that women don't have a right to prevent their son or daughter from coming into existence in the first place.


Natural law does seem the obvious starting point, inasmuch as we're debating within the US constitutional framework of which natural law is the foundation. But like I said, if you prefer another starting point, let's hear it. Put up or shut up.

mariel said...

why the swift change of subject and abandonment of our previous post discussion?


we agreed that you believe that some pregnancies are forms of enslavement. that means you believe that those born with uteri are more naturally prone to biological enslavement than males.
and that, my friend, is misogny.

Jennifer Starr said...

You do realize that not every woman desires a pregnancy, correct?

someone45 said...

You haven't addressed anything. You only repeat the anti-choice nonsense over and over again. You have yet to prove why they actual women is worthless and the fetus is everythinng.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Hint: when you're already racking up falsehoods by the pound, adding a new & especially egregious one -- that I think "women is [sic] worthless" -- doesn't help your credibility.

someone45 said...

If you think a woman should be punished for having sex by having her life ruined you obvious don't place much value on her life.

Calvin Freiburger said...

Careful, you're gonna get dizzy from all this circular reasoning.


Even if you'll never admit it here, I hope you end up learning something from today's exchange.

someone45 said...

I've learned that you haven't changed. You are still the same bitter woman hating man that I remember...

Calvin Freiburger said...

More hate-mongering lies.


Game, set, match.

someone45 said...

Tell yourself whatever you need to so you feel better.

expect_resistance said...

Calvin when have I attacked you? I have been civil even when you have not been civil to me.

expect_resistance said...

I'm sure it does. :)

Gaiuse Strome said...

That's crazy talk Jennifer!


if you are born with a uterus you *should* automatically desire to be pregnant from puberty til menopause because why thwart your biology???

Gaiuse Strome said...

we agreed that you believe that some pregnancies are forms of
enslavement. that means you believe that those born with uteri are more
naturally prone to biological enslavement than males.





What you are doing is looking at something that women *can* do, and saying that it is something they *should* be forced to do (should they find themselves to be pregnant) simply because they happen to be born with a uterus. It is reproductive objectification.



Think of it this way...women were born with vaginas. Vaginas were made for penises. Women must submit to any penis that wants to use their vagina, because vaginas were *made* to be used by penises, and any woman who chooses to thwart that biology is a misogynist. That's your reasoning, in a nutshell.

Gaiuse Strome said...

An unborn human is entitled to the parts of his or her mother's body that conception that function to sustain his or her gestation.

Yeah. No. I might need your bone marrow to sustain my life, that doesn't mean I am entitled to it.

that women don't have a right to prevent their son or daughter from coming into existence in the first place


You are saying that biology = destiny once fertilization has occurred. That once her body is 'in use' that she cannot thwart biology, because she must obey 'natural law'. Funny, because we humans thwart biology all the damn time. Why the special rules for pregnancy? Why must we *only* be subservient to biology in the case of pregnancy?

mariel said...

yikes - try to stay on subject gauise!


like i said, you believe those with uteri are more naturally prone to subservience/enslavement than those without them.


care to defend that belief, or do you just not care that it is blatantly misogynist?

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