Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Abortion: A Woman's Right to Control Her Body?

[Today's guest post by Prayson Daniel is part of our paid blogging program.]

Women’s rights clearly include their right to health and to make fully informed decisions regarding their bodies. Does a woman's right to decide what she will and will not do with her body extend to cover actions affecting the fetus who may reside in her body? Does a woman’s right to control her own reproduction include a right to induced abortion?

Granting the notion that our bodies are our own property, does it follow that a pregnant women can choose to kill her fetuses because the fetus is also her own property? Or, if we grant that a fetus is a separate individual with future of value like ours, does it follow that women can choose to kill fetuses on the ground that they are trespassers?

These questions get to the heart of the abortion debate. At Secular Pro-Life, we do believe that women have a right to make reproductive decisions. They have a right to control their own bodies. They may exercise these rights by, for instance, using contraception or natural family planning. But do they have a right to do what they please to their fetuses?

Imagine the following scenario: Jane decides to chop off the legs of her embryo, at week 7. Believing that Jane has the right to choose what happens to her body, Dr. John, with help of modern technology, performs the operation and chops the legs off Jane's embryo. In week 10, Jane decides to chop the hands of off her fetus and Dr. John again performs what he reasons to be Jane’s personal choice and right. Taking it to an extreme, Jane decides to pluck her fetus’ eyes out. I'll refrain from continuing this gruesome tale, but it ends in one of two ways: Jane finally decides to have an abortion, or Jane decides to give birth to an blind, amputated child. This second possible outcome reveals the obvious fact that Jane's actions were not done to her own body, but to the body of another individual.

If it is true that a woman’s right to control her own body extends to her unborn child, then Jane's actions are permissible. Assuming we are not sociopaths, however, we naturally condemn Jane's hypothetical actions as inhumane and morally repugnant. Clearly, Jane's right to control her own body does not extend to her fetus. A woman's right to bodily autonomy does not go that far.

If it is not true that a woman's right to control her body encompasses a right to control what happens to her fetus, then the argument for abortion rights is fatally flawed.


MSS said...

I am amazed by the pro-choice people who are against the use of drugs that cause birth defect. If you allow an abortion then what does it matter if you take drugs that cause birth defects?

Ki said...

Because then the women would give birth to a disabled child. And that might cause her an inconvenience in her life. To the pro-aborts, it is better to have a dead baby than to inconvenience an adult woman.

Although, they won't just admit that. So they'll just pretend it's a 'mercy' killing instead.

Jameson Graber said...

This is a remarkably clever post. I've actually never heard this scenario invented before, so I have to applaud the author for coming up with it. (If it wasn't the author's invention, I highly recommend citing whoever did come up with it.)

The only thing a pro-choicer might use to save the argument for abortion is to the invader argument. If someone invades your home, you might have the right to drive that person out using violent force. However, you don't have the right to trap the invader in your house and torture him. So the reality is, killing might actually be justified in certain cases when torture is not.

To really get the heart of the matter would be to decide to what extent the fetus really is an invader.

Drew Hymer said...

Concerning a home-invader, you can't kill him unless he's actually a threat to your life.

Of course, the unborn baby is never an invader. Except in the case of rape, the woman has invited the unborn baby to be there by willfully engaging in the behavior that brings the baby into existence. Even in the case of rape, it's the rapist who is the invader. The baby is an innocent by-stander.

MrsJVR said...

If a preborn male fetus is part of his mother's body and she can do whatever she wants with her body, then would those who are pro-"choice" but anti-circumcision be more okay with it if baby boys could be circumcised in utero?

Alden Smith said...

This is a really good post. I believe that the Abortion debate and among other things have gotten too emotional and we all need to come to the table and talk with some much needed common sense

Max said...

Holy Straw Man, Batman!!

I own my own house. That is, I have a property right to the quiet enjoyment of my house and the right to exclude you from it. But, lets say you decide to trespass into my house and then want to hangout for the next, say, nine months and drink all of my beer. Can I call the cops and have you removed? Sure. Will the cops just let you stay if you don't want to go or will they forcibly remove you? They'll forcibly remove you. Can I cut off your legs or make a necklace out of your ears, Apocalypse Now-style. Uh, no. I can't do that.

Does this mean that the argument for property rights in real property is somehow fatally flawed? Of course not!

Now, you could argue that there are circumstances in which property rights do not include the right to exclude others, either generally or specifically. So, for example, you could argue that if you were to trespass into my house and you were in a condition that removing you would kill you, then you get to stay. Then the argument would go that fetuses get to stay for the same reason that some house invaders get to stay (the life of the home invader trumps my property rights in my house).

Or, you could argue that the fetus was invited in (a duty by consent argument) and, therefore, has some additional rights that tresspassers don't have have. This argument, however, would only help you some instances and not others, of course.

Or, you could argue that women (and men and fetuses) don't have "property rights" in their bodies. Perhaps human rights should not be thought of as analogous to property rights.

But your example does not get to the "heart" of the abortion debate-- whether the fetus's right to life trumps the woman's right to exclusivity of her body. That is, abortion debate is about whether or not a pregnant woman can forcibly remove the fetus from her body (killing the fetus) or whether we should require woman (against her will) to carry the pregnancy to term out of consideration for the life of the fetus.

LevelUpPlease said...

Assuming your argument is sound, it only covers surgical abortions which the embyo or fetus is dismembered, but not chemical abortion or other types of abortion that do not touch the embryo or fetus. Chemical abortion changes to *woman's* body, which eventually causes the embryo to die and be expelled. In this case, she would be controlling her body without directly touching, cutting, maiming the embyo attached to her uterine lining. Would this be OK?

Now, back to scissor-happy Jane. Bodily autonomy in the abortion debate usually covers the use of one's bodily fluids and organs to support another. How is Jane upholding her right to bodily autonomy by mutilating the embryo, but not removing it from her uterus, ending the dependence that violates her right to autonomy? The senario you propose is a non-starter, because it's not really about autonomy.

LN said...

I think in some states you can kill a home invader if you simply *feel* they are a threat to your life or health, and it will be upheld if that fear is seen as reasonable. (This seems to be for urgency's sake, though, and pregnancy doesn't draw this kind of comparison very well).

However I will add that though pregnancy doesn't have this element of urgency, every pregnancy carries some risk to health and life.

However (again haha), I agree that if the woman consents to the risk of this occurring, she shouldn't be able to kill the child to relinquish the resulting responsibilities incurred from her chosen risk. So the last paragraph really only applies to rape pregnancies.

LN said...

Great comment!

LN said...

Basically what Ki said -- in general, PCers would rather a person be dead than live with a disability. It's just effed up priorities.

Max said...

Is consent really captured by assumption of risk? I mean, there are a whole lot of things out there that might happen to me. I could get hit by a drunk driver or I could get food poisoning. Every time I leave the house and go out to eat, I'm at some risk for both. Does this mean that I'm (tacitly) consenting to being hit by a drunk driver or to being poisoned at dinner? I don't think so.

It seems to me that consent in this context (sex/pregnancy) requires something more active (intentional) than assumption of risk. Which is why it seems weird to talk about a woman consenting to being pregnant when either (a) she was raped (non consent to sex) or (b) when she (or he or both) used contraception (taking active precautions to avoid conception).

SynerGenetics said...

Imagine a country were pregnant women are monitored by the state to see whether or not they are pregnant.

The same state has the power to imprison women in maturity prisions because there is proable cause she will seek an abortion.

Women / married couples who do not have enough resources (wealth) to raise children will have their children removed from them and placed in automatic adoption. Children raised in improvised homes is child abuse in default.

All miscarriages will be investigated as homicides, women who miscarry will be considered guilty until proven innocent.

If a woman seeks over the counter pregnancy check she must register the device with the state. If the state doesn't receive the device the local police will investigate it a as possible homicide.

All unwed women under 21 years of age who become pregnant while living in their parents house, they will loose custody of the said child and the parents will be forced to adopt, if the parents themselves are unable to afford the child, the child will be adopted via a state adoption agency.

All women who are pregnant will be placed in a nation wide maturity database if women seek abortions in abortion friendly countries and they return to the states, if they are found to be pregnant and now they are not, doctors by law will have to report them to the police.

If any woman doesn't report she had miscarried to the authorities or visit a doctor she will be charged with murder.

SynerGenetics said...

who bears responsibility for raising that child? The state? nope. Do you really want to spend your life on handouts? Do you think the state or private agencies are going to help you? What is disabled to you anyway? what about people who don't have the resources?

Clinton said...

You're conflating two different kinds of claims. When a pro-choice person argues for bodily autonomy, they either mean that the woman can do whatever she wants with or to anything in her body (which is the claim Prayson is responding to, as evident by the first paragraph), or that the woman should not be forced to be a "life support" using her fluids and organs to sustain her life.

This article is mainly to refute the objection that a woman can do anything she wants with or to anything in her body. If she can't do that to the fetus, then the argument that she can do anything she wants to with or to her body doesn't hold true if it harms another human being.

The right to refuse argument, a la the violinist, is more about the use of bodily fluids and organs to support the unborn. Against that argument, Prayson's response would not be appropriate.
Additionally, it doesn't only cover surgical abortions. It covers any action she can take to kill the child.

Max said...

Well, you don't have to imagine what a hypothetical country with those policies would look like. All you have to do is abortion policy in Ceauşescu's Romania in the 1960s.

Max said...

Your argument is not valid. You are are arguing (a) either x or y; (b) not x; (c) therefore, not y.

From your post:

"When a pro-choice person argues for bodily autonomy,

they either mean that the woman can do whatever she wants with or to anything IN HER body... or that the woman should not be forced to be a "life support" using her fluids and organs to sustain her life. [either x or y]

This article is mainly to refute the objection that a woman can do anything she wants with or to anything IN HER BODY. [not x]

If she can't do that to the fetus,
then the argument that she can do anything she wants to with or TO HER BODY doesn't hold true if it harms another human being. [not y].

Crystal Kupper said...

Good point.

LN said...

The difference between consenting to something directly and consenting to the risk of something occurring *to you* are the ensuing weight of responsibility. If there's a person more directly responsible, (i.e. the drunk driver), then they are held accountable in some way-- not you.

Now what about consenting to the risk of food poisoning if you go out to eat? What does that mean? Does it mean you can't get help if you get sick? No. Does it mean it's your fault? No, it's the cooks fault. In this scenario, your consent to the risk really has no bearing on the responsibility element because you're not primarily responsible. But by eating out, you consented to the possibility of something bad happening to you, which only means that something bad might happen to you. That's it.

Consenting to a risk is only problematic beyond that if you choose to act in a way that *puts someone else in possible danger/dependency/etc* (if it affects someone else). If you act in a way that risks someone else's well being, and that risk comes to pass, you are held responsible. So the cook is held responsible, the drunk driver is held responsible, and the parents of a dependent child are held responsible (or should be).

When it comes to sex, there is NO consent if a woman is raped. At no point did she choose to act in any way that could even possibly be construed as "risking pregnancy."

However, there is consent if a couple *engages in sexual intercourse* even if they are using protection. All protection carries a possibility of failure and most everyone knows this. If you have sex with (x) protection, you have (y) chance of it failing and you becoming pregnant. "Ok, let's risk it, that's a small risk!" This is consent to the possibility of the risks coming to pass.

Random example: I want to drive my truck on a dirt road that isn't meant for vehicles because the turns are sharp and people walk on this path. Well, I mean, I used bright lights, I honked my horn the whole time so people would watch out for me. I obviously did not consent to risk hitting someone because I took precautions, right? Lol, no, I still drove on the road. Taking precautions to avoid hurting someone (or putting someone in a dependent state) does not relinquish your responsibility if that risk comes to pass. Why? Because you still chose to take those risks by acting.

LN said...

Yeah, right, I mean this is totally how the US was before the legalization of abortion. Good point.

SynerGenetics said...

What is the counter argument?

How do you plan to prevent women from having abortions and it doesn't threaten their Constitutional right of privacy?

Coyote said...

Romania back then also banned contraception, if my memory is correct.

SynerGenetics said...

How about this stop whining about abortion but instead start developing better incentives for women to have children.

Public child care
Paid family leave
Health coverage
Pre natal care
After school programs
Provide birth control at no cost

Create incentives for women to have children and if you do, remember that these incentives don't end at birth, but when the child becomes a adult and a vital member of society.

Seriously put you money where your mouth is!

Max said...

This goes both ways though. Both pro-lifers and pro-choicers seems relish the feeling righteous anger over the other side's position a whole lot more than actually working to get better solutions (from everyone's standpoint).

It seems to me that if pro-choice and pro-lifers were actually concerned with respecting women's autonomy and in reducing the number of abortions, they would spend more time advocating for legal and social changes to make the US more like the Netherlands instead of making arguments about violinists or fetus torture fetishists.

Max said...

Romania was pretty rotten!

The more likely result of banning abortion in the US would be that woman with any sorts of means would just go to Japan or Canada or pretty much anywhere else in the developed world to have an abortion. So, in a practical sense all we are really talking about is whether poor woman can get abortions.

Max said...

Interesting argument.

I don't think that I've ever seen someone explicitly make the analogy between tort liability and pregnancy liability, at least not someone who is pro-life since making that argument falls quite nicely into the pro-choice narrative that what pro-lifers really want to do is punish women for having sex by making them have babies.

But, in any rate, you seem to have confused a couple of first year law school concepts. What you are talking about is holding someone (a pregnant woman) liable for the foreseeable consequence (pregnancy) of the actions of her and someone else (the people who had sex).

You are not talking about consent, at least not in the way the term is used in any other context. Bad actors that are held liable for the forceable consequences of their actions are not consenting to anything.

If I drive may car around and hit you with it, I am not consenting to hitting you or consenting to pay damages. Rather, I am liable for hitting you because I did not take reasonable care driving my car and, therefore, I am liable to pay damages for whatever harm you suffered that was the foreseeable consequence of my (negligent) act.

LN said...

Revert to abortions being illegal, punish doctors who perform them, only investigate with probably cause and only arrest with sufficient evidence that didn't trample her rights. Basically as we function in other scenarios already.

"The same state has the power to imprison women in maturity prisions because there is proable cause she will seek an abortion."

We don't imprison people because of probably cause. We imprison people who carry out an illegal action.

"Women / married couples who do not have enough resources (wealth) to raise children will have their children removed from them and placed in automatic adoption."

What are you even talking about? No family would go without the basics, no family does right now. Government provides food stamps and I think most people at SPL are highly supportive of preventing the removal of children from their biological parents unless absolutely necessary.

"All miscarriages will be investigated as homicides, women who miscarry will be considered guilty until proven innocent."

See this is why it is hard to take you seriously and respond to your post. Why the heck would this be the case? People are never guilty until proven innocent, and it wouldn't happen if abortion became illegal. People like you exaggerate the consequences of prohibiting abortion and it's just not realistic, it's not what's being called for *at all*.

Ki said...

My younger brother is mentally disabled, and my family is not and never has been on handouts. Even when the economy was at its worse.

I don't know about the state, but there are private agencies (usually called charities) that are willing to help. If they'll help with non-disabled children, they'll help disabled children.

Adoption. Not the fostercare system. Adoption. They are two different things.

Having a disabled child does not ruin your life. Yes it's hard. But raising non-disabled children is hard too. Raising children at all is hard.

Max said...

I think that is a pretty fair criticism. In fact, my guess is that what would really happen is even less than what you've described. Performing an abortion (on someone else) would be illegal. So doctors (or others) performing abortions would be held criminally liable.

But its very unlikely IMO, even in the very unlikely event that abortion will ever be illegal in the US, that women who have abortions (either illegal ones in the US or legal ones in other countries) would be similarly imprisoned.

I guess its possible. Maybe. In the broadest sense of the term possible. But its hard enough to in-vision the US outlawing most abortions. It stretches the imagination a lot to think we'd go full Romania!

Clinton said...

You've completely misunderstood the nature of my comment. You should re-read the article for some illumination.

When someone makes a bodily rights claim, they mean one of two things: One, that a woman's body is her "sovereign zone"; that is, she has the right to do anything she wants with, or to, anything in her body. This is the claim that Prayson, the author of the article, was responding to.

Two, they could mean that, a la Thomson's violinist, a woman should not be legally compelled to be a "life support" for the unborn child. This is not the claim Prayson was responding to.

So your attempt at making a fallacious logical argument out of my comment is just silly, and did not represent what I was saying with my comment at all.

I was stating that Prayson was responding to one type of bodily rights claim, not the other. There's nothing fallacious about that.

Clinton said...

That's an interesting question. I might just pose that next time I encounter someone who holds both of those views.

Max said...

No pro-choicer makes a sovereign zone argument which is why the article represents a straw man argument.

Pro-choicers make a property rights argument in their own body and they make autonomy arguments. No pro-choice person has ever made the apocalypse now fetus ear necklace argument.

Also, Thompson's argument (your favorite) does not accurately reflect the totality of pro-choice concerns. Carrying a child to term, giving birth to the child, and the emotional and physical attachment mothers' feel toward their babies is more than mere life support, which I thought would have been obvious to you at least. You can just claim in your most authoritative voice, of course, that pro-choicers just have to accept Thompson's analogy because you say so, if you want.

As for your comment about my characterization of your post, I see that my post may have been inaccurate. Sorry for that. But that doesn't mean your argument works either:

"This article is mainly to refute the objection that a woman can do anything she wants with or to anything in her body.

If she can't do that to the fetus, then the argument that she can do anything she wants to with or to her body doesn't hold true if it harms another human being."

That conclusion (the second sentence) does not follow from the premise (first sentence). It does not because refuting the proposition that you can do ANYTHING to the fetus (proposition x) does not entail that you cannot that [i.e. ABORT] (proposition y) the fetus because it is a HUMAN BEING (proposition z).

Nobody argues you can do anything to the fetus, only that you can abort it. And whether or not the fetus is a human being (one claim) and whether this gives the fetus a right to a woman's uterine wall (a separate claim) is still up for debate.

Clinton said...

Actually, many people make the sovereign zone argument. I have talked to them personally. I talk to both pro-life and pro-choice people on a regular basis. I have learned what the different pro-choice arguments are, and I always ask clarifying questions to make sure I understand them properly.

There are also people who bite the bullet, and would actually make the argument that a woman should be able to dismember the fetus just because it's in her body. Just because it's an argument that you personally don't like doesn't mean nobody makes it.

I'm starting to suspect that you're nothing but a troll but I'm losing interest in responding to you. Thomson's violinist is not my favorite pro-choice argument, but after studying the pro-choice position and reading the best articles and books by pro-choice philosophers, I have come to realize that it's the strongest pro-choice arguments.

So yes, Prayson's argument does refute the claim that a woman can do anything she wants to or with anything in her body. That's a very strong claim and near impossible to justify, and usually the people who bite the bullets are just trying to save their claim. At least I would hope they are not sincere.

Look, I think you need to go take a basic logic class. You've thrown out logical fallacies without really understanding what they are. Plus, I can show you in a simple syllogism why the argument follows:

P1: If a woman can't dismember a fetus, then she can't do anything she wants to anything inside her body.
P2: A woman can't dismember a fetus, even if she could choose to kill it.
C: Therefore, a woman can't do anything she wants to anything inside her own body.

That is a valid argument. If someone makes a claim that a woman can do anything she wants to the fetus because it is inside her body, but we can show that the woman can't dismember a fetus, then that refutes the argument. Obviously she can't just do anything she wants to anything inside her body. That's why this is a strong claim but a very weak argument.

So once you've established this, you either need to jump ship and find a better argument, or come up with some reason why it's okay to kill a human fetus, but not to dismember one, since killing someone is worse than injuring them.

LN said...

Yeah I agree. But let's even give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he is envisioning the world that PLers would have if given the opportunity (as opposed to what would *likely* occur if abortion were outlawed) -- even in THAT case, it's extremely exaggerated! My response was within that realm.

Now as far as the likely scenario if abortion is outlawed, I think you are right Max. Doctors would be liable. Women would probably be fined at the most. Probably not even that if they testify against the doctor.

SynerGenetics said...


You're the guy like my coworker who doesn't understand why people simply don't go to college but then says his parents paid 100% for his.

Your parents were smarter, or richer,or came from a large families or had a greater pool of resources to draw from.

The US is a pretty big country geographically and not everyone has same access to charities and or other socials services beside such social services are being cut.

You're making a assumption all birth defects are the same and all families are just like yours.Because your family wasn't greatly impacted it doesn't mean that other are not.

SynerGenetics said...

If abortion is equaled to murder how would want the state to protect the “innocent” child in the woman’s womb?

What would be “probable cause?” Simply being a “pregnant women” is enough probable cause to have her monitored by the state. We live in world of “big data” it wouldn’t be hard to predict which women based on income, family, lifestyle, age, and education to see would more than likely get an abortion. We have over 40 years of post Roe v. Wade data to use.

>We don't imprison people because of probably cause. We imprison people
who carry out an illegal action.

Do you want to save babies or protect a woman’s privacy? Abortion is a crime
equal to murder, a baby greatest threat is its own mother. Placing women in prisons or institutions to protect the baby for later adoption, doesn’t seem like much of hardship, considering your guaranteeing the safety of the child. You do want
to save babies, don’t you?

>What are you even talking about? No family would go without the basics,
no family does right now

>>More than 3 million referrals of child maltreatment are received by
state and local agencies each year—that's nearly 6 referrals every minute.2

>> Cognitive development in children with chronic protein energy malnutrition

Malnutrition is associated with both structural and functional pathology of
the brain. A wide range of cognitive deficits has been reported in malnourished

>>The Thirty Million Word Gap

After four years these differences in parent-child interactions produced
significant discrepancies in not only children’s knowledge, but also their
skills and experiences with children from high-income families being exposed to
30 million more words than children from families on welfare.

If your going to make “saving babies” as your rallying cry then you also better be prepared to take responsibly for next 18 years of its life. There is no logical sense or rational to force women who do not want children to care
for said children. It makes no sense for people who are unable, unwilling, to raise their children the guardians of said children. If you make abortion
illegal then its your or the states to be responsible for these children for the
next 18 years of their life. You also don’t take account the recent battles in
the farm bill and how many politicians wish to cut or eliminate food stamps altogether.

You also seem to forget the US is the
one of the worst industrialized states in the world, when it comes to health
care, child care, prenatal care, paid family leave (young or old), considering
the recent budget cuts and underfunded pension liabilities of states, the funds
are simply not there.

>People are never guilty until proven innocent, and it wouldn't happen if
abortion became illegal. People like you exaggerate the consequences of
prohibiting abortion and it's just not realistic, it's not what's being called
for *at all*.

Abortion as murder is unique because the murderer and the potential victim
share the same body. Do you want to save babies ore don’t you? Saying that the
fetus growing in its mother womb should fear its own mother is not much of
stretch considering that 1.2 million abortions occur in the US each year.
If a mother is abusing the child its not hard to simply remove the child, but
if the mother will have an abortion how do you protect the child other than institutionalize
the mother in safe environment for nine months, to secure the babies safety, again you do want to save babies, don’t you?

SynerGenetics said...

PS: Women being arrested for miscarriages.

Chemical endangerment

Chemical endangerment is the crime of exposing a child to a controlled
substance or an environment in which it is produced. It was added to the Alabama legal code in
2006, with the intention of protecting children from methamphetamine
laboratories. **Since then, it has been used to prosecute women who give birth
to children that test positive for harmful drugs.**

If abortion was illegal its not a big jump to start investigating women for
abortions if they miscarry. Only one has to look a law enforcement behavior
when it comes to social ills like drug abuse as a precedence to realize that
you don't want law enforcement involved in regulating medical issues. We
have the highest incarceration rate on the entire planet. It is not a
great leap of imagination to come to if you want the police to start
investigating murder from miscarriage a lot of innocent women will be facing
jail time considering how many cases do not reach trail but are simply plea
barged at the cost of the innocents rights.

Dejected Embryo said...

This is a lie which unfortunately most people believe. When abortion was supposedly prohibited (1967-1989) official statistics recorded over 6 million procedures done in Romania. That is without counting 2 years for which statistics are not available.

The first link to a PDF shows the numbers obtained from the Ministry of Health and the National Institute of Statistics (which I think are not published online, government websites are notoriously bad), excluding many abortions done in private facilities for the past decade or so, as those do not have to be reported to the authorities.

Just like in the other socialist republics, communists legalized abortion to destroy the traditional family and send women to build socialism in factories, then 10 years later realized Romania was heading toward a demographic distaster, so they took measures in their usual way. Outlawing abortion would have been the correct thing to do, it would have simply reversed the legalization of abortion on demand, unfortunately it was not just that, the state did interfere in people's lives and treated women horribly. However, it is hypocritical to act all outraged by these actions, yet say nothing about the initial communist laws permitting and encouraging abortion, which showed the same disregard for human lives.

It is no coincidence that communists invented mass legal abortion (USSR decree signed by Lenin in 1927), they were experts in eliminating inconvenient human beings and calling it progress. Just like we do nowadays and don't like to think about it, just sweep it all under the rug. Anyone who is opposed to totalitarianism should be opposed to abortion.

Dejected Embryo said...

Saving babies and respecting people's privacy are perfectly compatible. I think SynerGenetics is simply being dishonest, his scenarios are like those feminists make about patriarchy trying to keep us barefoot in kitchen (never understood why barefoot).

LN said...

You sound like a troll. You make many assumptions about my positions and motives. The fact that you felt the need to say "you want to save babies, don't you" like 6 times is revealing. If you want to do much more than mischaracterize your opponent and vent online like a child, then get back to me when you've calmed down and learned to listen. Because as it stands, what I say and believe clearly has no bearing on your predetermined perspective of all pro-lifers.

LN said...

Yeah there's no point engaging him, he already "knows" what we all think, what our ultimate plan is, what our ideal world looks like. He's attacking a strawman.

SynerGenetics said...

Amazing, you don't have a counter argument, you simply name call ex, "your a troll, your a child," WOW!

Seriously if you have some good counter arguments, I would be glad to them.

SynerGenetics said...

>Saving babies and respecting people's privacy are perfectly compatible

Prove it.

If Roe v. Wade was overturned tomorrow the states would have the responsibility to regulate abortion.

California a prochoice
Nevada a prolife

If women could drive to California and have an abortion you would be fine with that?

If a woman you knew had an abortion would you report her to authorities?

What would be the penalties for women who have out of state abortions?

Since your main concern to save babies, would you just stand by and watch women crossing the border to have abortions and return as if nothing happened? Or would you take action against those women.?

SynerGenetics said...

Its impossible to know what you think if you talk around the argument instead of hitting head on.

Dejected Embryo said...

I live in Europe, so I am not familiar with your federation of states system. All I can say is that people who execute abortions or sell abortifacients should be prosecuted for murder and women assumed to be intimidated or coerced into it (as they usually are by lovers, parents, abortionists and society in general). So no need to check women, just cut the providers. As for women who single-handedly attempt abortion on themselves, they
clearly need and should receive physical and mental treatment, that is
what we do with people who self-mutilate.
But a country cannot impose its laws in other countries (again, not sure how this would work for American states), so theoretically a woman could go have an abortion in a place where this is permitted, as long as the state she is a citizen of is not involved (by providing medical coverage, for instance). It doesn't mean that the state does not protect its citizens, simply that it can only do so within its limitations. The state cannot prove what happened outside its field of action and going beyond it would make it a police state (I'll have none of that, thanks, been there, done that).
So stop projecting your totalitarian views on other people. We don't want any individual having a life and death right over another. If you want that, ask yourself what makes you so different from those oppressive authorities you reject.

SynerGenetics said...

Europe is not a country so what is your national origin?

California for me!

>So stop projecting your totalitarian views on other people.

Women in this country have rights and one of them is the right to have an abortion and the right not to have one.

Maybe the country you come from women do not have the same rights of men.

If anyone is a totalitarian is you, a woman who bares the burden of pregnancy should also have right to choose.

Max said...

Thanks for the link! But, unfortunately, I cannot read Romanian. I see the chart in the first PDF is in English, which demonstrates that abortions occurred in Romania. I'd like to know more about the policies that encouraged abortion first and promoted childbearing later in Romania. By any chance do you have more information in English? I see that the website you sourced took the time to translate its Christian mission into English. Perhaps there is a similar translation for the history you've described?

Thanks in advance if you have it and sorry about my ignorance of the Romanian language. Its not the first time that I've thought that picking a language to study in college other than Latin might have proven useful!

SynerGenetics said...

Having children period is a life changing event, the couples lives are totally transformed. Having a disabled child depending on the disability is even more so.

LN said...

Yet you keep telling us what we think. Funny how that works.

Max said...

Where is Europe? IMO there are several countries in Europe that deal with abortion better than the US-- better use of birth control, less unintended pregnancies, better resources for pregnant woman, more restrictions on the access to abortion, etc-- that US policy makers ought to take a hard look at, for example, the Netherlands.

SynerGenetics said...

You keep arguing away from the argument. Funny how that doesn't work.

LN said...

I laid out an explicit, reasonable legal framework for prohibiting abortion and explained why it wouldn't be as apocalyptic as you insist. And your response was to insist that, no, I really do want to imprison women who are pregnant as a precaution (& more). You don't listen to what I say; you take what I say and insist it's "not enough" for me. And again, it's funny how you ask what I think then after I tell you, you tell me I'm wrong. About what *I* think.

Dejected Embryo said...

My national origin is Romanian, we Romanians populate two countries: Romania and Moldova. It does not matter where I come from and where I live now, I prefer to remain incognito as I am about to launch my own website.

I'm all for letting women choose - before we become pregnant. The right to an abortion that you speak of is a communist invention and, yes, my country does have it, because of the communist legacy, just like you have it because of the marxists in your country. If it is such a good thing, why was it not legalized it before? Because people knew it is the execution of innocent humans. Now many people are indoctrinated with communist views, we were told a human embryo or fetus is just a bunch of cells and I even heard someone say that because the embryo goes through animal stages it is like killing an animal (in 2011's Moldova, Haeckel's fraud was being perpetuated in a 12th grade biology textbook which included his faked drawings of the human embryo evolution, for all I know that textbook is still in use).

I call you totalitarian as you advocate mothers being dictators in their family, deciding which of their offspring will live and which not, even against the wishes of fathers. If a man gets a woman pregnant and he wants the baby but she doesn't, she can kill his son or daughter and there is absolutely nothing he can do about it. She can however get child support from him if she keeps the baby against his wishes. Doesn't sound like equality to me.

Dejected Embryo said...

I would not look at the Netherlands, aren't they the ones legalizing euthanasia and prostitution? Don't seem to have much respect for human beings.

Dejected Embryo said...

I know, I am sorry I could not find that information in English. It is targeted at Romanians and so I imagine there was no need to translate it. I'll translate at least some of it myself when I have the time. The Bucharest Pro-Life Association has an Orthodox background, of course, but it's not a Christian mission, it is one of the most important pro-life NGOs in Romania, collaborates with Roman Catholics too. There are also other pro-life NGOs in Romania and in Moldova.

I don't know how to find more information about the legalization of abortion... articles written about population control in Romania concentrate on the famous 770 decree that limited abortion and the negative effects it had, they are strongly biased in favor of abortion rights. Here is a documentary about the decree, it also has some interesting parts about the abortive mentality instilled in women:

What are you excusing yourself for, few people learn Romanian as a foreign language, can't do much with it. :) There is always automatic translation, with all its faults you can still get the gist.

Max said...

I'm not sure I'm following you on how the legality of prostitution relates to how the Netherlands deals with abortion. How is the Netherlands position on prostitution related to secular arguments for pro-life positions generally, and anti-abortion positions specifically?

My point about the Netherlands is that people who do not want to have kids seem to be better than similar people in the US at not getting pregnant. Also, the Netherlands seems to provide better resources to pregnant woman so they don't feel economically "forced" into doing something, such as having an abortion, that they don't want.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but a country in which there are less unintended pregnancies and less abortions presents an improvement over one in which there are more unintended pregnancies and more abortion, right?

Max said...


SynerGenetics said...

I never made a claim that my post was based on a legal framework, and by the way are you a lawyer? Because your response wasn't that explicit as you claim.

There is a framework of what a post Row v. Wade US would look like, the regulation of abortion would fall back to the states, some states have trigger laws that would outlaw abortion at the overturn of Row v. Wade. Arizona would be prolife and California would be prochoice as examples.

If you lived in Arizona and abortion was illegal what does that mean? Would you want the death penalty if a woman had an abortion?
Would it be a crime for a woman to seek an abortion?

Remember if you hire someone to kill, as in a "contract killing" your just as guilty, so when a woman seeks an abortion is she just as guilty of murder of her unborn as the provider?

If you knew a friend of your was seeking an abortion and its only a 3 hour drive to Mexico or California would you contact the police to prevent her from leaving the state?

If you knew a woman who did have an abortion in another state, would you report her to the police? Because if she did commit murder there isn't any statues of limitations.

If you think abortion is murder, the mother of the child is the murderer, the child is in the mother, how do you protect the child from its own mother? If the mother is abuse to her child, the child is removed, how do protect child without monitoring the woman in some fashion?

Women have been arrested for miscarriages, if abortion is illegal why wouldn't the state not investigate miscarriages?

Wouldn't doctors have to report any miscarriages to the authorities?

Wouldn't Arizona have to set up a system to monitor women who had miscarriages? Because women could be using drugs like Misoprostol that would induce a miscarriage.

Pregnant Women Who Lose Babies Face Criminal Charges In Mississippi, Alabama

If you need for me to go into more detail I will, but I think we need to keep abortion legal, provide better methods of prevention, and those women who really want to have a child better access to paid time off, day care, prenatal care, after school programs etc.

SynerGenetics said...

In the US women have the constitutional right to an
abortion. Under the supreme court case Roe v. Wade the courts concurred a women's right to privacy overrules the states interest in the fetus.

I don't know where to go with this conversation because when you post stuff like this...

>because of the communist legacy, just like you have it because of the marxists in your country. etc, etc, et

your completely clueless of American history in the last 60 years.

Abortion is a legal issue in the US and such as it is, it's impossible to discuss topics about law when two countries in question are very very, different.

Jameson Graber said...

"Now, you could argue that there are circumstances in which property rights do not include the right to exclude others, either generally or specifically. So, for example, you could argue that if you were to trespass into my house and you were in a condition that removing you would kill you, then you get to stay. Then the argument would go that fetuses get to stay for the same reason that some house invaders get to stay (the life of the home invader trumps my property rights in my house)."

I actually find this argument largely convincing, don't you? In fact, let's take out the words "trespass" and "invade" and consider a situation more like a cast-away--that is, suppose you own a ship and someone drowning in the ocean happens to get thrown on board by the waves. What does that do to the situation? Now let's take it even further: let's say that the "invader" played absolutely no role in appearing on the scene, but that their very existence was caused by you. Doesn't that sound like even more reason to suppose that the "invader" might actually have a legitimate claim to impose on your property?

"Or, you could argue that the fetus was invited in (a duty by consent argument) and, therefore, has some additional rights that tresspassers don't have have. This argument, however, would only help you some instances and not others, of course."

I think this argument helps pro-lifers in pretty much all the cases most of us care about. I think the word "invitation" goes further than necessary in order for the argument to work. If it was something I did (willingly) that directly caused you to appear in my house, it becomes a little strange for me to call you an invader. Sure, I might not be expecting you, but I don't see what difference that makes.

Max said...

I agree that the invitation argument is the best bet if you want to argue that a woman's right to her body is analogous to my right to real property I own. In my opinion, this is one of the reasons that most people who are not solidly in the pro-life camp still find second trimester abortion restrictions less problematic than first trimester abortions-- I think the idea is that you can infer at some point that a woman's choice to continue her pregnancy obligates her to continue it to completion because, at some point, continuing the pregnancy is analogous to offering the home invader an invitation to stay.

Max said...

Yikes! I mean second trimester abortions are more problematic than first trimester abortions.

Whizzo76 said...

Because it is harming a person, even retroactively in this case.

MSS said...

But it "isn't a person" in their eyes

Whizzo76 said...

I said retroactively because if you harm someone before they are born you are still responsible for they damage you cause them after they are born. A fetus is not a human being because of a lack of brain function, if a fetus is never born then it will be as if it were never conceived in the first place. If however you do something to harm a fetus and let it become a damaged human being then you are responsible for those damages, because said fetus is a human being (as soon as EEG activity beings).

Kaliane Moloch said...

It isn't that a woman has the right to do whatever she wants with a fetus. It's simply that she has the right not to carry it inside her body.

It's basically self defense. Cutting it up is not least necessary force. Removing it is.

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