I’m a pro-abortion patriot, and I say anti-choicers are with the terrorists.

Let me start out by urging all pro-choice (or pro-abortion) women and men out there to stop referring to people who want to restrict women’s right to decide what to do with their own bodies as “pro-life.” They made that bullshit name up, and the opposite of it is “pro-death,” which they intended. Also, I think calling them “anti-abortion” is too lenient. Even “anti-choice” might be too generous. I say we just start calling them anti-American. Hey, it’s working for the Republicans. My reasoning is as follows: as of now, our Supreme Court (however tenuous the status of this decision may be) holds that a woman has the right to decide how she wants to utilize her uterus (the name of the next Guns ‘n’ Roses double album?). The Supreme Court is an American institution and has been one for much longer than apple pie, NASCAR, or fake Belgian beers, ergo anyone who disagrees with the Supreme Court’s decision is anti-American.

But seriously. It’s time for me to lay out my position on abortion. This is a feminist blog, is it not? I’m pro-abortion. I don’t mean that everyone ought to abort every fetus that happens to lodge itself in the lining of every uterus, but I do mean that my motto is: if there’s any doubt, abort!

What do I mean by this crazy motto of “If there’s any doubt, abort!”? I mean if you are a teenager and are afraid to tell your parents you’re pregnant, if you think you don’t have time or room in your life for a child, if you don’t think your partner will make a good parent, if you can’t stop drinking/smoking/doing blow, if you aren’t sure whether you can afford a child, if you have any doubt at all about whether you want to be a parent, DON’T BECOME ONE, and have the abortion. Trust me, it’s probably best for everyone involved. Sure, there are plenty of people who have had children that they didn’t expect and had things turn out fine (my parents, for example), but there are a lot more people who have had children they ought not to have had and made life hell for both the child and themselves, and there are an awful lot of fuck-ups who have carried drug-addicted babies to term and placed them into the completely fucked child welfare system. (Adoption may be an option for some people, but I’ll have to get into uterus-rental in another post.) Besides, there are too many people on Earth as it is, and we need to be figuring out ways to reduce the population without millions of people having to starve to death, not ways to bring more consumers into the world.

I once had to watch a movie for Chinese class called Gua Sha (which I recommend only for those in second-year Chinese who need practice, or those who love a good unintentional comedy) that highlighted something important about anti-Americans for me. This movie revolves around a Chinese grandfather giving some kind of traditional Chinese medicine to his grandson that left what looked like bruises on his back, a treatment called gua sha (I’ve had it, it’s not a big deal and it doesn’t hurt, nor does it work). After the marks are seen on the boy, child services comes in and takes him away from his parents, who they believe have hurt the child. During court proceedings, the prosecutor asks the boy’s father, “Is it not true that your wife nearly died giving birth to your son, and that the doctor came in to ask you which of them you wished to save?” (Yeah fucking right, I know). And the father replied, “Yes, and I said to save my wife, because we could have another child.” Here’s something that (fictional and essentialized) Chinese people seem to understand that anti-Americans don’t: an adult human being has become a full person and has formed attachments that should be much more painful to sever than those between an as-yet non-existent human being and its parents-to-be. Ask any anti-American what to do in such a situation, and they’d tell you to save the child and let the mother die. People who believe in sin see more potential in a new life than one in which many sins have likely already been committed.

I’m not religious, I think religion is a bunch of tomfoolery that is unfortunately a necessary element of life for many people who find cosmic uncertainties to be more than they can handle. As such, I don’t need to worry about what a dude in Birkenstocks with a Band of Horses beard thinks about when a human life begins. All I have to care about is whether something can live on its own. Until then, it’s not a human being, but rather a growing set of cells that cannot exist or continue to grow without the aid of its host. Therefore, fetuses exist at the pleasure of their hosts, the women in whose uteri they reside.

Anyone who thinks otherwise is anti-American and is probably an al Qaeda sympathizer.

* Update: I knew calling myself “pro-abortion” would get me some unwanted attention, but so far at least three anti-American blogs have linked to me as if they’ve won some kind of prize for finding a pro-choice person willing to “admit” they’re pro-abortion. One of them even called this “the mother of all pro-abortion rants,” which is funny, because it means I’m all about abortion, but I’m also a mother. How odd. All I can say is, thanks for the traffic!

103 thoughts on “I’m a pro-abortion patriot, and I say anti-choicers are with the terrorists.

  1. I agree that abortions should be allowed.

    What I *don’t* like about abortion is lack of accountability.

    One would think, after one, you’d be pretty traumatised or something. But there are free abortion clinics, with a clientéle of mostly teenage girls that go there several times.

    What this means, is that there’s some asshole telling the girl “I refuse to wear a condom. If you get pregnant, just get an abortion.” He probably used the line “If you love you’ll have sex with me.” to get her into bed in the first place.

    I do believe in abortion because there are some seriously fucked up people out there and their common thread is more often than not crap parents.

    By the way, you’re really on a roll today.


    1. If you don’t want an embryo or fetus in your uterus, and it’s already there, you have the right to remove it. Period. No matter how many other times you have already done so.

      Otherwise you’re saying it’s OK to make a mistake one time, but if you make a mistake again your kid has to pay for it, to the tune of five or six kids paying for it while you sit back all slackjawed wondering what happened.

      People who say “I don’t believe in abortion as birth control” are wankers, even Nine Deuce, whom I otherwise like. Abortion can’t be anything BUT birth control. It prevents live birth.


      1. If you don’t want an embryo or fetus in your uterus, and it’s already there, you have the right to remove it. Period.

        Yes, this. A thousand times yes.

        If there is no consent, then there should be no contact. Period. That’s why we have laws against sexual and physical battery.

        A fetus is not entitled to the mother any more than a rapist is entitled to make contact with or enter the body of a victim. That’s why we have laws against battery and rape, and why we need to protect abortion or even create laws to protect women against fetuses that may kill or damage them in ways nobody thinks or cares about.

        The argument about whether abortion is birth control has always been a false one, IMO. Birth control is being debated now because of the conflation of abortion with birth control. Abortion is about a woman’s right to self-sovereignty over her own body, a very basic human right that men take for granted every day.


        1. Oh, and FYI as a non-reformist feminist – I am absolutely pro-abortion from the standpoint that the human race is hosed and the last thing we need is more of “us” going around. As it is, we’re all headed for the precipice so creating yet more people is akin to creating yet more suffering, IMO.

          On a side note:

          I also get tired of seeing the argument “OMG you might have aborted Mozart.” It is probably the most flagrantly deceptive and ridiculous statement to make considering that most people born into this world of abuse tend to become abusers or victims of abusers, not saints or world famous concert musicians.

          Life in the Patriarchy is hell. Let’s stop bringing more people into it.


          1. I was having a conversation with some idiotic hipster dude who is exactly one-half “progressive” (when it suits his needs) and one-half traditionalist (where, of course, women’s needs are concerned), and he was on this tangent about how some secret, evil, faceless group of elitist homosexuals are attempting to destroy the world by decreasing the population. o_O

            Now, this is coming from a guy who, on occasion, enjoys playing a female avatar on Second Life, and engaging in “lesbian” roleplay with actual females (and has also engaged in various sexual encounters with men, on and off the internet). *cough* So, that is some seriously inconsistent bullshit flying from his keyboard, right?

            He’s one of those pseudo-intellectual snotheads who never stops talking about himself and the latest high-brow, artsy-fartsy flick he is/was watching. He worships at the alter of soured vomit with legs, AKA Quentin Tarantino. Never misses a chance to gush about how “intellectually stimulating” or “profound” a certain movie/song/whatever is, that he has chosen to watch….because his taste in media is superior to everyone else (in his own egotistical mind). Prefaces nearly every sentence with “I find…”. And, unfortunately, he’s also a DJ (freakish techno mixes, designed to induce a splitting headache). Of course, he thinks that shit is “profound” too. Lolz.

            That was just a little background info on the douche. Anyhow, more to the point…. despite all of his proclamations of being “enlightened”, he still holds the belief that women are designed to be fuck-toilets & baby incubators, and anything that interferes with that is inherently evil. Yet, he still denies that he is a traditionalist (I’m guessing this is because of the old “kinkster = progressive” mentality). Lots of flip-flopping gibberish pawned off as intellectualism but, upon further examination, nothing more than tin foil hat syndrome.


            1. Ain’t male privilege grand? It allows dudes to pick and choose which forms of progress are more important than others – the ones affecting men being a crises to immediately attend to, of course. “Bigotry is bad, so watch while I defend poor men who are rapists and treat all women like whores and tell them what overbearing bitches they are when they complain.”

              I want to say that he’s likely a Libertarian, because only a moral wasteland as above described usually festers in the minds of one of them. However, as a Democrat I can honestly say that way too many Democrat men resemble this description. A bunch of “progressives” who sit on their thumbs doing nothing while women have lost and continue to lose the progress we’ve worked so hard for the past four decades. These are supposedly our “allies,” right? As if!

              And [email protected] homosexuals and population decline. What a load of horseshit. I mean really. Has he even googled the world’s population or seen what all these people are doing to the Earth – AND TO EACH OTHER? FFS.

              Sorry about caps but shit, dude. His head sounds like it’s shoved up so far in his ass he can whistle through his ears by farting. The only explanation I can think of for such stupid statements is that it’s the same angsty rant Republican men make when they complain about gays and abortion clinics reducing the number of white english speaking Americans.


  2. I agree that abortion ought not to be used as birth control. If we lived in a perfect system, there would be safe and reliable birth control that was freely available and that people didn’t have to be ashamed to ask for (and that wasn’t gross to use).

    I have a feeling this post is going to get me in some serious shit. I’m trusting my readers an awful lot to know what to take seriously and what not to.


  3. Ben – I’m pro-abortion for the sake of everyone involved in scenarios in which a child would not be born into a good situation. What that amounts to is pro-choice and anti-religion mixed together. If we didn’t have nonsense religious figures telling us otherwise, we’d all know that abortion amounts to removing a cluster of cells, and people could make the right choice for themselves and their potential children without the detritus of 2000-year-old fairy tales getting in the way and making them feel guilty about it.


  4. Well, if they don’t know your sense of humour, then they are not very loyal readers.

    I’m waiting in anticipation for all the people that get led here through Google searches on “pro-life”.

    Tee hee hee.


  5. I so agree with you. And ever since they invented the term, I always thought “pro-life” was a ridiculous name. As you said, it insinuates that the rest of us are pro-death; and it’s also absurd because of that rash of killings and bombings (yes, terrorist activities!) where the pro-life people were murdering the abortion clinic people.

    Great post.


  6. Your argument in favor of abortion makes sense to me.

    Agreed with Windstorm as well. Funny how the people that call themselves “pro-life” are the ones beating the war drums and encouraging the most killing.


  7. “…clientéle of mostly teenage girls that go there several times.”

    Sources, please? And if some dude is using coercive bullshit to get a girl into bed with him, perhaps we should be more concerned about his behavior.

    I am not at all fond of the idea that women should not be allowed abortions because pregnancy is an acceptable punishment for Being Bad.

    Totally fabulous post, Nine. Anti-American talk makes me think of Stephen Colbert which makes me smile.


  8. Zombie – I think Patricia would agree with you on that one about the dudes being the ones we should be concerned about. I like my ideal situation above, but I’m with you 200% that pregnancy-as-punishment should not be the alternative.


  9. The human species is a failure. We are mean, selfish, greedy, angry mess, only capable of destroying this planet.

    Abortion should be MANDATORY, as part of a plan to “wind down” our presence on this otherwise beautiful planet. As long as there is even ONE breeding pair on this planet, the Earth is at risk.


    1. “Abortion should be MANDATORY, as part of a plan to “wind down” our presence on this otherwise beautiful planet. As long as there is even ONE breeding pair on this planet, the Earth is at risk.”

      You are an enemy of mankind and should be treated as such if you are serious.

      Aside from that, I’d like to hop in and say that being pro-forced birth (great term btw,) isn’t illogical per say. Pro-forced birth comes from a different set of presuppositions that one logically follows from, namely, life is sacred, and life begins at conception, Aquinas be forgotten. This isn’t mere semantics — saying it is illogical denies the people you are arguing with the ability to produce logic. It slowly moves towards the tone of “You are wrong because you are stupid.”

      Further, a person with a statement of faith doesn’t mean that person possesses beliefs about cosmic certainty. Quest religiosity, etc.

      By saying that that anyone who is not agnostic or non-religious is stupid and weak, you are in a sense being anti-American, and you might want to check out Sweden. In the same sense, being a feminist is anti-American — you oppose the beliefs of the majority. Oh well, it is a loaded term. If you aren’t anti-American in at least some sense, you’re not being very American!

      Anyway. I myself am pro-abortion, and I liked your rant so much that I nitpicked it. Have a good one.


      1. Pro-forced birth is not based in the belief that life is sacred, it’s based in the belief that the rights of fetuses are more important than those of adult women. That business about life being sacred is a ruse in 99% of cases, even when it isn’t consciously so. If these dildoes were really all about a “culture of life,” they’d care about those lives for longer than it took for them to be delivered. And they’d be against war. As for anti-Americanism, that was a bit of a joke. I was poking fun at the climate of bullshit that existed at the time when I was writing the post in which anyone who disagreed with Republican ideology was basically accused of treason. I wrote an entire series based on that premise (see the War on Terr’r category).


        1. Aha, I indeed missed the timestamp and I thought it was current when it popped on stumbleupon. Sounds like the time of the flag pin nonsense.

          And yes, you are dead on about the pro-forced birth and pro-war position being dissonant. From that addition you can certainly argue that it’s illogical, and I wager it’s also one you take for granted as known by your audience too.

          Anyway, thank you for the response, and have a nice day.


      2. Seriously? Sweden? Everyone is anti religious in SWEDEN? Have you been there? Do you know where it is on the map? I was actually sort of agreeing with you until that bit. For your information, over 70% of the Swedish population is a member of the Church of Sweden, which is protestant. Do you know how I know? I read the fucking wiki page. And no, I’m not Swedish, I just don’t like using random European countries in discussion on the assumption that no one in America will know where it is anyway and you’ll sound clever.


  10. Patricia said: “What I *don’t* like about abortion is lack of accountability.”

    Wow, really? For one thing, being pro-choice means not requiring women to convince you that their decision is “right.” It means allowing women, whatever their age, access to means of controlling their bodies.

    Yes, I do think that there’s a problem if a woman is having sex with a man who is coercing her into unsafe, unprotected sex. But that doesn’t mean the woman’s access to abortion should be restricted, just because her situation is more fucked up than others.

    I’d also like some sources about the clientele of “mostly teenage girls.”

    This is a great post, ND. You’ve inspired me.


  11. L and Z – I’ll wait and see what Patricia has to say about that one. I’m in complete agreement with you both.

    L – Thanks. It’s already gotten me some fairly funny attention from an anti-American guy’s blog.


  12. I try not to be a fan-boy, but I have to say that this is another great post!

    Not to derail the discussion, but I just wanted to mention something about your post that reminded me of a thought I once had. I have never been able to decide whether I should call myself atheist or agnostic. I pondered the situation and decided that there should be some fractional rating in between. From now on, if ever approached on the subject, I will declare my spiritual understanding as ‘Uncertain’. This for the same reason that I would mark ‘None’ on any survey requesting my religious affiliation. I am uncertain and always will be undecided. That is one thing that I am certain of.


    1. use free-thinker. it is an old term, it does not refer to a deity etymologically, and it is wonderfully descriptive of oneself as a person.


  13. Yeah abortions! The irresponsible woman’s #1 choice of birth control! Fetuses are a renewable resource, ladies. There is no need to anthropomorphize them, because you can always make more.


  14. chlorophyll – I hate to say this, but what about the men? Are women supposed to be punished for irresponsibility with children they can’t/don’t want to raise while men can irresponsibly fuck and impregnate with impunity?

    I agree with you that abortions ought not to be seen as a form of birth control, if only for health reasons, but access to them is essential to women’s ability to control their own destinies. Feminism is about women’s equality and freedom, and that means having the right to decide one’s own destiny.

    As for whether fetuses should be viewed as a renewable resource, I don’t think that’s what I’m saying here. I’m arguing that people who will make poor parents ought not to have children, and that women who aren’t ready to be parents ought not be forced to become parents. I personally vote that we all refrain from having children, so don’t accuse me of the “you can always make more” argument.


  15. Wowza, what is up with all the woman-hating, anti-abortion bullshit on this thread? Aren’t these folks — chlorophyll, Patricia — feminists? I cannot believe what I’m reading. Criminy.


  16. I guess I thought, based on some of chlorophyll’s other comments on this blog, that zie was being very snarky/sarcastic in a very complicated way. But maybe I’m wrong.

    Either way, zie had it wrong — it is my understanding that women only have a certain number of eggs. Whether or not this is true, I DO know that sperm and eggs both begin to “degrade” after a certain age (40ish?), so the OPTIMUM fetus really is available for a Short Time Only.


  17. Actually everyone, my post wasn’t being satirical. I was being serious. I should have clarified though, because re-reading it does make me sound like an MRA or Xtian activist. Sorry for the confusion.

    I do view abortion as a tangible means to solve a night of “irresponsibility”, or a way to maybe undo a big mistake (IE: deciding to get pregnant too early on in the marriage). For me, personally, there aren’t too many political or moral string attached to the act of abortion. I fully support the women who have gotten or are considering one, and while I haven’t experienced the procedure myself, I’ve used the morning-after pill in enough instances that it would be deemed “irresponsible.” I choose to keep the Plan B pill as one of my options because it’s less of a commitment than the Pill while still allowing you to skip the inconvenience of a condom use. Mind you, I use this pill when I’m with a monogamous partner; it’s not as though I go for condomless STD smorgasboard sprees. Which, I mean, is fine if you’re into that sort of thing.


  18. And just as a follow-up, please keep in mind that I’m only 19 (20 on August). Re-reading my last two posts has made me realize that some of the things that I take for granted now are things that hold more gravity for others. I understand that pregnancy is an incredibly intimate decision for most women, and belittling the reproductive rights issue is probably something I won’t be doing five to ten years from now. I’ll probably feel and think noticeably different about abortions, and will most likely view the issue with less laxity than I do now.


  19. Just one small nitpick about atheism — most atheists, including myself, would never say that we know there isn’t a god. We just operate under the assumption that none exist, because assuming the existence of something for which there’s no evidence makes no sense, practically speaking.


  20. I don’t think I can really have a very good stance on abortion being the age I am. I can’t say weather I’d have one or weather I’d keep the child and put it up for adoption or something, I’ve never even come close to being faced with that decision(thank god). But I do know I’m pro-choice, and that I think it’s disgusting people want to take that choice away from women.

    We’re not here just to have babies, and I hate that that’s what these people are trying to tell us. That we’re here to just breed, and if your life gets in the way of that then boo sucks for you, you gotta have that baby.

    Although, thankfully, there seems to be a lot less people in England that are “pro-life”. I could just be being niave of course.


  21. I like the term “pro forced birth” I’ve heard used for anti-americans elsewhere.

    I couldn’t be happier with my decision(s) to abort fetuses I never wanted. An avowed tokophobic, I would never ever want to be forced to reproduce because of an unintended, unwelcome, unplanned & most definitely unwanted pregnancy. I don’t have a problem with abortion as birth control, either. It’s maybe just not the best “first resort” method, but that’s essentially what abortion is: birth control.


  22. To explain myself:

    With regards to the clientéle being teenage girls, that was a news article I read that interviewed one of the nurses in an abortion clinic in a township area in South Africa, I would not be able to give the exact source now, it was years ago. But in South Africa you are allowed to get an abortion at 13 without letting your parents know.

    And as for claiming I am on the Other Side, did you not read my whole comment? I am fine with abortion, but a lot of girls (note: in South Africa) would rather go for repeat abortions than tell their boyfriends to fuck off when they don’t want to wear a condom. In this country, many men refuse to have sex without a condom (as it is less ‘manly’) and for a girl a free abortion is a cheaper alternative to birth control.

    I’m sure we’ve all heard horror stories about backyard abortions.

    My issue is not that abortion is wrong or that you’re killing a baby (puh-leese). I firmly believe that you do a lot more damage by raising a fucked up child than just getting rid of it in the first place.

    My issue is that it takes TWO people to make a baby but it’s up to the girl to possibly fuck up her body (because cheap, free or illegal abortions can go wrong) while the man can gloat about his virility.

    So you see… we were arguing the same point all along…


  23. It does sound like sarcasm, but I think sometimes things that I say seriously are things some people might say sarcastically. I once seriously suggested during a satirical class discussion on hunger in Africa that the U.S. should refrain from giving any aid, because Africa’s hunger was due to infrastructural problems, and foreign aid would only be a band-aid solution that would prolong it. I thought it was a reasonable contribution, but it was considered to be tasteless. Which, looking back, I suppose it was.


  24. So when does killing become murder?
    In the second trimester?
    In the third trimester?
    Can babies be exposed at birth as the ancients did?
    Can we dispense with defective children before the age of reason, up to maybe, age seven?
    Can we get rid of any “useless eaters” or “lives unworthy of life?”
    What about social parasites like telemarketers, finance capitalists, and winos — can we cull the herd of them?
    When EXACTLY does killing become murder?


  25. In order to understand what it means to be “anti-American”, one must fully comprehend what it means to truly be “American.” Since America was founded upon the principles of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” being “American” – a patriot – can be defined as being in compliance with those principles – the very principles upon which the nation was founded. Supporting abortion does not align in accordance with the principles of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” as abortion terminates life, denies a whole class of persons the freedom to be born and prevents persons from fully developing to realize their own potential. Abortion, therefore, not being in accordance with the very principles America was founded upon, is anti-American.
    Abortion, which is tragically rationalized under the guise of “choice”, is a perversion of the full meaning of freedom, and is instead tyranny. It is tyranny because it subjects a whole class of human beings to the status of mere property that can be disposed of if inconvenient. Subjecting a person to the status of property is called slavery. Is it suddenly “American” to support tyranny? And advocating life is all of a sudden “anti-American” because it somehow does not comply to the ideals of “LIFE, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” You need life first and foremost to have liberty.
    You pose abortion as useful to solving an over-population crisis, claiming that it is a better idea to not bring anymore “consumers” into the world. Have you even pondered the possibility that many of those reputed “consumers” could be a potential scientist who reduces the threat of over-consumerism? Or perhaps that one of those aborted lives could have become a paramedic who saved your life, a doctor who treated your illnesses or a fire-fighter who saved you or a loved one from burning rubble. Perhaps even one of those aborted lives could have been your closest friend, or a great musician, artist or humanaterian. Of course, we will never know, because tragically those lives have been cut short in the name of choice and it is somehow “anti-American” to protest this and advocate for a culture of life.
    And so the “anti-Americans”, the patriots who actually believe in the right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” continue to protest tyranny, in even its most subtle and rationalized forms. For if being “American” means supporting tyranny, then I’m “anti-American.”


    1. You bloody terrorist you. I squirt dead fetuses at you.

      All seriousness aside, what about all the misanthropes in the world like myself who could potentially kill themselves over what one of those little bastard children did? Where’s the pro-life now, bee-yotch!


  26. First of all, am I taking advice from someone from Australia on what it means to be American? Your e-mail address points me in that direction, and if that is indeed the case, you can piss right off.

    You are right, one does need to take the foundational concept of liberty into consideration. Women need the freedom to determine their own destinies, and being punished for having sex by being forced to mother unwanted children does not fit the bill. Why must women suffer limits on their freedom when men do not?

    As for the concept of “life” in the founding documents, it did not then, nor does it now, refer in any way to some supposed “right” of an unborn fetus to be born. Abortion was legal at the time that document was written, and was commonly practiced. Look it up.

    A culture of life? Let me guess, you support the Iraq War.


  27. Sure, that fetus could eventually develop into a human being that could eventually be a doctor or firefighter, or it is more likely to be born to a mother who does not have the emotional or financial means to take care of it, so it ends up with any variety of emotional problems and becomes Hitler, or even if it makes it out ok mentally, it was certainly never afforded the privileges it takes to become a doctor in this country — mainly, money. Most likely, that fetus is going to develop into another Average Joe/Jane, working low-income jobs (which it seems the majority of jobs are these days, unless extraordinary circumstances have allowed you to become Donald Trump), struggling to make ends meet, and not saving anyone’s life through curing any disease or fighting any fires.

    Most of us are not these great heroes you paint fetuses out to be. I mean, are you?


  28. Perhaps you need to take advice from someone from Australia or indeed elsewhere, because your conception of patriotism and being American does not even align to the principles your nation was founded upon. The principles of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” How can you go on all about being “anti-American” and yet your own definition of patriotism does not fall into accord with the written text of one of your country’s most important and foundational documents! You need life first and foremost to have liberty.
    You state that women should not be punished to bear unwanted children for having sex. How about the children? Should they be punished then? Should their lives be degraded and devalued to the status of property? Why should they be denied humane treatment? Why should they be the victims of the death penalty when they had not even committed any criminal offense… unless you consider being conceived to be a criminal offense… I guess we’re all guilty then.
    You make reference to abortion being commonly practiced at the time the document in reference was written. Abortion has been ‘commonly’ practiced, whether legally or illegally, throughout many ages. But so has torture. Does that make it right or any less a form of tyranny? No it does not. As I have previously mentioned, abortion subjects a whole class of real human persons to the status of property.
    You make the radical assumption that I support the Iraq War. You are actually incorrect.


  29. purple-orange –

    Your argument that abortion is a violation of a man’s right to life rests entirely on the premise that life begins at conception. That premise is untrue insofar as it is disputable from various viewpoints of various interests.

    PS – if you ever come to America for an extended stay, you’ll find that the American government does in fact support tyranny, and that many people would no longer balk at being called “anti-American.”


  30. Quote: “Have you even pondered the possibility that many of those reputed “consumers” could be a potential scientist who reduces the threat of over-consumerism?”

    I didn’t think it took science to get people to realize that cheap junk from China and a shit-built McMansion isn’t the way to happiness, but whatever….besides, the probability of someone growing up to be yet another “customer service representative” is much, much higher than someone growing up to be one of those lofty souls that you’re blathering on about.


  31. I love it when people take a line from the Constitution and twist its meaning in order to make a point. It’s one of the key tactics of the right, and it works really well for convincing simple-minded people. Too bad I’m not simple-minded.

    How is forcing a woman to carry a fetus she does not want to carry not a form of tyranny? That to me seems like a much more obvious example of the term, whereas I just can’t see the removal of a cluster of cells from the body as someone exercising tyranny over those cells. Why is it that the cluster of cells has the right to its life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, as well as its future potential, but its mother does not? Why don’t women deserve the same “rights” you argue are due to a cluster of cells? How does forcing women to give birth not amount to “subjecting a whole class of human beings to the status of mere property”? Women in your book are baby-making machines first, people second. How does that not amount to slavery?

    Potential – maybe an aborted fetus could turn out to be a scientist that solves all the world’s problems, if the fetus was being aborted by Wonder Woman. Be serious. What about its mother? If I’m forced to have a baby against my will, isn’t my potential being limited? What if I were on the path to being that scientist, fire fighter, or paramedic you speak of, and being forced to have a baby would derail me? I bet you don’t think of it that way because all those fine people you referred to were male in your mind, weren’t they?

    You argue that things that were common practice back when the Constitution was written shouldn’t necessarily be now, but you act as if the Constitution were written yesterday, with all the benefit of modern knowledge behind it. Right-wing types love to trot out lines from the founding documents as if they were the final word on all moral issues, in effect treating the Constitution like the Bible. Whatever your opinion of the Bible, the Constitution is not the product of divine revelation. Its framers were mere mortals, and their word was not infallible. There are problems (yes, I said it) with our Constitution as it is written. It did not anticipate a lot of the problems we face today. But that is neither here nor there. The framers did not intend that their three principles be applied to fetuses. They didn’t really intend them to apply to black people or women, either, but I suppose their intent is only of interest to you insofar as you can use it to make Fox News-esque arguments. You want to extend the meaning of the foundational principles in the document for one group (fetuses) and not for another (women), and that’s just plain illogical and nonsensical.

    And as to when life begins, did I miss the meeting when we all agreed it was at conception? As chlorophyll said, that has yet to be decided definitively, and since that’s the foundation of your whole argument, you’d better give it some thought.


  32. Is it just me, or does purple-orange exhibit a serious inability to detect satire? In calling anti-choicers anti-American, I am making fun of that tactic, as it is commonly used by right-wing types in lieu of actual data or logic. But I shouldn’t expect an anti-choicer to be into real logic, otherwise they’d see the error of their ways, no?


  33. First of all, let me clarify, I am not a “right-wing type” as you continually portray me to be. I’m not even a “left-wing type.” I don’t even like the idea of a left-right paradigm. In reality, it’s two sides of the same coin and functions only to polarize public opinion into two camps that constantly attack the other.
    You also misrepresent my views on my more than one occasion. For example, you state that “Women in [my] book are baby-making machines first, people second.” Like you said, some simple mind may find that convincing, but any amount of critical thinking can see transparently through that straw man argument for what it is. In another straw man, you state that: “I bet you don’t think of it that way because all those fine people you referred to were male in your mind, weren’t they?” Actually no, I anticipated those wonderful people I mentioned to be of both sexes. Which leads me to another problem with abortion. Who is to say that abortion will not be used against a particular sex? What if in some culture it is considered more favourable to have male children and so female children are persistently unwanted and their fetuses therefore aborted. What would feminists say to this unequal treatment of women? What you have done is simplified my statement to say something that it does not so as to easily knock it down and frame me in a negative light in the eyes of your readers. Again, any amount of critical thinking can see past that. I did not even imply as such.
    Nine Deuce, you continually refer to the fetus as a “cluster of cells.” Indeed it may be. But that “cluster of cells” is the beginning of a unique and distinct PERSON. If we believe that persons are infused with innate dignity, then does that not also apply to persons who are developing in arguable their most vulnerable stage of life? Or is it because that they are the most vulnerable, indeed incapable of defending themselves, that we can justify their removal in the name of “choice”? You too were once a cluster of cells, developing through the stages of the lifespan. Indeed, if you were never a cluster of cells, you would have never developed into the fully grown individual that you are. Which brings me to answer your question: “Why don’t women deserve the same “rights” you argue are due to a cluster of cells?” When does someone’s freedom end? Logically, one’s freedoms end where another’s begin. In other words, you have freedom so long as you do not impede on the freedom of other persons. Having already established that the “cluster of cells” you speak of is the beginning of a unique and distinct person, aborting it is effectively intruding on the right of another person to be born and to live.
    You also seem to cast doubt on whether life begins at conception. Let me ask you then, where and when does life begin?
    In your last reply regarding myself you write: “But I shouldn’t expect an anti-choicer to be into real logic, otherwise they’d see the error of their ways, no?” Perhaps then I should call you anti-life and anti-liberty? There are choices, but when one’s choices impede and intrude upon the life and liberty of another unique and distinct person, then are those choices ethical?


  34. How is my saying you see women as baby-makers first, and people second, a straw man? That’s exactly what you’ve said here. Their freedom, in your argument, ends when an egg implants in the uterine lining, because you think that’s when their freedom begins to impinge on that of the “life” in their uterus. I do not consider life to have begun until it can live on its own. You disagree with me on that fundamental point, which means we can’t discuss this issue fruitfully, doesn’t it?

    I’m glad you saw scientists and fire fighters as being of both sexes, because that’s a rare outlook. As for people aborting fetuses of the “wrong” sex, people do that every day in India and China, just to name two places. It’s unfortunate, and I think it will come back to bite them in the ass when they come to find themselves in a situation in which the only way they can marry all their men off is to start allowing polyandry. But that doesn’t mean that I would tell Chinese or Indian women, who live with their own set of problems, what to do with their own bodies and lives. They face unique circumstances. Not that I think this excuses gender-based abortion, but in rural developing societies, sons often bring their mothers power in the family (which is hard to come by) and afford the family an extra pair of hands, while female children end up costing the family money in the form of dowry. We make the choices we make after evaluating all of the circumstances we face, and it isn’t my or your place to do someone’s evaluating for them.

    It’s supposedly illegal to have abortions in most western countries based on sex, but it happens. I don’t want to see widespread sex- or other characteristic-based abortion, but I doubt that would ever come to pass in the developed world. Sure, it’ll happen here and there, and that’s unfortunate, but I’d rather that than all women being stuck in a regime of mandatory pregnancy in which men can escape responsibility for their sexual behavior and in which women are required to shoulder all of the burden.

    You think a cluster of cells is the beginning of a person, and maybe it is. Or maybe it’s the beginning of a miscarriage. Maybe it’s the beginning of a tragedy for its mother. Maybe it’s the beginning of three people being trapped in a situation that will make all three of them miserable. Why do you care more about the potential of the fetus than the mother? I need you to answer that question, because it’s fundamental.

    Don’t accuse me of oversimplifying your logic. I was inferring, based on experience, what usually goes along with statements like the one you made. And you don’t need me to make you look bad in the eyes of my readers. For the most part, they aren’t too into anti-Americans, and the use of the ludicrous argument that our Constitution guarantees fetuses the right to “life, liberty, and happiness” wasn’t going to fool them no matter what I had to say on the subject.


  35. You claiming that I see women as baby-makers first and foremost is a drastic straw man as I never make such a statement nor even implied that I saw women as merely useful for reproductive purposes. In a similar way, you made the assumption that all those wonderful people I aforementioned were all male, when I NEVER implied that. How is that not a misrepresentation of my views?
    You also state that you believe that life has not begun until it can live on its own. A very general statement. I say it is general because an infant could arguably not live on its own. Does that justify infantacide?
    In terms of development throughout the lifespan, development is considered to be a lifelong process, beginning at conception and ending in death. Take note that development is LIFElong and begins at conception. If it didn’t, would we all be here? Fact of the matter is, each of us comes from one single genetically unique cell. You may argue that this is not the beginning of a person, but you have really provided no reasoning for such logic other than bare claim. When did your life begin?
    “Don’t accuse me of oversimplifying your logic. I was inferring, based on experience, what usually goes along with statements like the one you made.”
    You didn’t infer, you simply assumed based on my opinion and packaged me into a neat little box titled “right-wing type.” In future, take note that not everyone who takes a pro-life (“anti-American”) stance is right-wing, a Republican or pro-war.


  36. Yes, my body *can* always make more fetuses. In fact I’m one of those horrible “killers” who had an abortion, and oddly enough, instead of being punished by the Great White Sky Father, I ended up getting pregnant again not quite two years later in better circumstances and having a beautiful healthy son! Yes I know, though the “pro-life” crowd women like me are unicorns. I’m supposed to be crying myself to sleep every night 15 years later over the precious little “life” I murdered, thus ruining my one and only chance at ever becoming a mother, bemoaning my childless state, wracked with guilt and living in wild promiscuity to try to drown my pain *cue emo sobbing*.

    I’ve grown increasingly weary, too, of the “moderate” position on abortion, that women should be accountable. As far as I can see, women are accountable already. It’s their body that is pregnant and therefore their body that has to undergo the unpleasant abortion procedure, and that should be enough. But on top of that, it is usually them (or sometimes the guy who knocked them up in the first place) who has to pay for it out of pocket, since the “pro-lifers” have managed to make sure this important part of birth control – like other forms of birth control – is not covered by most medical insurance companies. But this isn’t enough for them! They also want women to undergo a form of public humiliation in order to obtain an abortion, in the form of going to court, having to tell any number of people, from the desk clerk to the lawyers they may deal with to the judge, that they are pregnant, that they don’t want the child, a detailed account of whatever unpleasant circumstances regarding their personal situation and the conception of the fetus in an attempt to rationalize their desire to be fetus-free, and may they have permission to get rid of this one this time in a neat and tidy fashion without trying to harm or poison themselves pretty please? All of these people putting out the “clever” idea that “there should be restrictions” are asking for a return to this era, which was how abortions were obtained legally in the 1960s. Women or girls had to go to a judge and talk in court abouthow they were raoped, or go to a psychiatrist and convince them they were “too crazy” to have a baby, in order to get male approval for their abortion. Clearly this isn’t about “life”, since if it were, those reasons would not be enough to murder a person. The fact that most people against abortion believe that in certain hard circumstances it should be allowed shows that deep down they recognize this is not murder. It is, purely and simply, a way to control women, and they know this – thus they only wish to extend abortion services to women who could not possibly have gotten pregnant by having sex of their own volition. Combine that with the simultaneously held belief that rape is rare and most women are just liars or really wanted it and you end up with the “hard case” that gets brought up, generally depicted as “well what about a 13 year old who was raped by her father?” that divides the truly insane abortion opponent from the merely standard abortion opponent. The standard abortion opponent will agree such a girl is innocent enough to deserve the right to rid herself of her fetus. The real crazies insist she must give birth to the product of rape.


  37. purple-orange – Noted. Not all anti-Americans are pro-war. At least you aren’t a hypocrite. You are, however, a poor rhetorician.

    I’m tired of discussing this issue with you. If you read my last reply, you should have noted that I felt we were at an impasse due to a fundamental difference in our views on when life begins. You’ve asked me to clarify something I’ve already stated clearly: life begins when the fetus no longer requires its mother’s body to live. To extend that to infants who have already been born is nonsense and a dishonest tactic.

    And you’ve still refused to answer my question from the previous reply. Why do fetuses deserve more “rights” than women do in your book? If you say a woman’s rights end when they meet the rights of a fetus, why don’t a fetus’s rights end when they come up against a woman’s?


  38. Nonsensical is a word that perhaps best describes the notion that life begins when it is able to survive on its own. The words you used, ‘survive on its own’ is very general, as I previously said, and hence could even be used to justify the killing of an infant who could not ‘survive on its own’ without some form of parental care. If that is not what you intended to say, then I’m glad that you are more specific in your reply where you claim that “life begins when the fetus no longer requires its mother’s body to live.” However, that too does not seem to stand up to scrutiny. If you believe that someone who is alive is one with a beating heart, then the fetus is very much alive and living a life. If you believe that someone who is alive is one with neural impulses firing from nervous hardware, then by that definition, the fetus is living a life and its life has indeed begun. If you believe that life is, as one would say from a biology perspective, “the condition that distinguishes organisms from inorganic matter, including the capacity for growth, reproduction, functional activity and continual change, prior to death,” then the “cluster of cells” is very much a life, and by its genes it is very much a distinct and unique human life. So to argue that life begins when the fetus is capable of surviving beyond its mother’s body does not fall into accord with what life actually is.

    In answer to your question, a very difficult question indeed, we are talking about people here, and there is no easy answer. I don’t see how I’m saying that fetuses deserve more rights than women, but I don’t understand how it is considered a women’s right to terminate another human life. Who really has the right to terminate anyone’s life?


  39. Your definition of life, purple-orange, is a matter of opinion derived from a religious belief, and is not a fact (and if you want to take a heartbeat or neural pulses as life, then abortion should be cool with you up to the 8th week or even later in some cases). I’ll say this once more, and then I’m done talking to you: until it can live on its own, a fetus requires its host’s body to continue its existence. If she does not wish this condition to continue, she ought not be forced to allow it to. You aren’t going to convince me otherwise, no matter how many definitions and phrases you misuse. Some biologists may define “life” – as in the condition when something can be termed live organic matter – as you quoted it above, but that does not mean that science agrees with you that a fetus has a “right” to live off of (or at the expense of) its mother if she does not wish to allow that to happen.

    Your misuse of other people’s authority is an insult, and your arrogance when it comes to your own supposed authority on this matter is obscene. Where do you get the idea that you ought to be telling anyone what to do with her own body? Why don’t you make sure your own life is free of sin of any kind before you come out and start telling everyone else what they ought to be doing? The difference between me and you on this is that I say we ought to preserve people’s freedoms, and you want to limit them. It takes a lot more than religious beliefs, which is what your position on life amounts to, to convince me that a freedom ought to be taken away from someone. Religious beliefs are, by nature, anti-logical, otherwise they wouldn’t be religious beliefs at all. I can produce logical reasoning to support all of my opinions and don’t have to rely on overblown rhetoric that misconstrues basic terms and misrepresents secular authorities (such as the framers and the scientific community). Because it is clearly impossible for us to engage in fruitful discussion, this conversation is officially over.


  40. purple-orange – I told you in my last reply that I was done talking to you. Do you know whose website this is? That’s right, mine. You don’t have any “right” to be heard here. If you think my readers are missing out on your perspective, start your own blog and see if they come and read it.

    As for your claim that you are anti-abortion because of a belief in “human rights” rather than religion, I say you’re being disingenuous. If you tell me your “human rights” position isn’t influenced by some sort of religious doctrine, I may fall down dead of a heart attack.


  41. Nothing gets the fire flamed like abortion discussions. Although my opinion isn’t at the far end of the scale, the woman’s right to do what she wants with HER OWN BODY should win above all else. And I truly do not understand how it doesn’t in some people’s opinions.

    (Spending my Saturday getting caught up on your blogs of the last week and a half!!)


  42. The term “pro-life” is not only laughable, it is an oxymoron.

    Anti-choice people are not pro-life. You cannot be pro-life when you eat, for eating ends the lives of plants and animals.

    You cannot be pro-life and believe in the death penalty, as many anti-choicers seem to.

    You cannot be pro-life when you ignore the impact of unwanted and forced continuation of pregnancy on a woman.

    You cannot be pro-life when you don’t give a shit what happens to the “baby” after it’s born. I never see any of these zealots stumbling over themselves to adopt all those unwanted kids. Even if they did, a woman is NOT a brood mare for folks who do want to adopt.

    What they are is “pro-human fetus”. And even that’s debatable.

    I think the whole anti-choice movement is really an anti-woman movement in (very poor) disguise.


  43. I disagree with you completely.

    “All I have to care about is whether something can live on its own. Until then, it’s not a human being, but rather a growing set of cells that cannot exist or continue to grow without the aid of its host. ”

    A newborn baby or small child cannot live on their own.

    Children born to parents that “aren’t ready” , yes, may have a harder life. But you assume that they are better off not being here… Think about that conclusion you jumped to. ..


  44. That’s a weak argument. See my War on Terr’r part 4 post and its comments for a discussion of whether a newborn is comparable to a fetus.

    It isn’t a jump to say that people who aren’t ready shouldn’t have kids. I don’t care whether the kid would be better off not being here, but I do think it matters whether the parents would be better off with children or without them.


  45. i disagree with you still.

    Having children changes a person, and unless you have been giving birth that I do not think you will understand that it is not about being “ready”. Having a child often changes people for the better (at least from what i have experienced and seen).
    how can one ever be “ready” for such a life changing experience.


  46. Here’s my pro-choice argument, some may see validity in it, some may not. Either way, put your reading glasses on, I tend to be verbose.

    First off, the obvious white elephant in the room of abortion discussion is the fact that nobody can define “human” or “humanity” in such a way that is agreeable to the vast majority of people. Compounding this problem is the fact that some societies/people, because of their religious beliefs, believe that birth control is morally reprehensible. So if preventing the sperm and egg from uniting is a sin, then surely killing a united sperm and egg must be.

    But excluding the anti-birth control argument from my position, which I think is entirely invalid since it’s based solely on religious preference and not any arguable position of secular morality, my argument goes as follows:

    A human being is an animal, although we tend to want to think of ourselves as “higher” than animals or “unnatural” as compared to animals in behavior. To examine how and where we should draw the line between cruelty to animals/humans and justifiable extermination of an organic life form, let’s begin by taking a look at what laws and practices already exist in our society. We have laws set in place to protect infants, children, adults, the elderly, the mentally disabled, the mentally insane, and in some cases even the brain dead from cruelty, debilitating harm, and neglect. So likely, if we come to some consensus about whether abortion is morally acceptable or not, it will not affect how we treat people in the above categories. In addition to these laws, we have laws protecting animals, in most cases, from physical abuses, neglect, and cruelty. The demographics for animals appears generally the same, with the exception that:
    1) Consent is not possible with an animal, as a result of some combination of lack of communication and lack of intelligence on their part, and therefore we choose to spay and neuter them against their consent, if they can even have consent with such a thing.
    2) We often choose to euthanize animals when medical treatment becomes too expensive, the animal is in too much pain, or the animal has committed an offense that demonstrates its incompatibility with our ideas about proper animal behavior. Euthanization is used as a substitute for imprisonment, since imprisoning animals won’t change their behavior (does it ever even change people’s?).

    So although one might argue that “all life is sacred,” from the above we can conclude that despite this, not all animals are given the same treatment. All life may be sacred, but it is certainly not equal, in terms of rights and morality.

    Now let’s consider some life forms we regularly slaughter without much regard, from the majority of us at least. Starting with mammals, we quite regularly kill rats and other animals for the sake of experimentation. Not on purpose of course, but without animal testing it is very, very difficult to gain complete understanding of how chemicals, medicines, and other things impact animal physiology and health. So the deaths of these “test” animals can be considered collateral damage in the grand quest to protect our own lives, and perhaps by extension/noble intent other lifeforms, from dangers that are present in our environment, and dangers we inadvertently might create by trying to protect ourselves from other dangers. Despite this, there are some people who still object to animal testing on moral grounds. The argument against animal testing more or less falls on the resolution of the problem of whether the ends justify the means. While some might argue that the ends never justify the means, everyone chooses otherwise continually throughout their lives, in small, forgivable matters, and so the real truth is that the problem’s solution comes in shades of gray; it’s not a black and white thing. As such, some have decided that, even though animal testing may be necessary to preserve our race/the rat’s race from eventual extinction on this planet, it’s an unacceptable sacrifice to hurt or kill rats for this cause. Interestingly enough, however, there are some life forms we kill without a second thought.

    Although some people might still complain about this, humans often kill insects and rodents in the wild, as “pest control,” and in addition we will kill animals that pose a threat to our own lives, clearly choosing not only that survival violence is justifiable, but that a single human life is “more valuable” than a single animal life. In addition, we often kill trees for wood, and kill plants even for the most superficial of reasons as landscaping (aesthetic plant formations), i.e., the killing of weeds, crab grass, and other undesirables. Now in addition to these “pests” and trees that we kill, there are lifeforms that we kill that NOBODY feels regret about: microscopic life forms. Our own bodies are constantly killing bacteria and small cellular organisms, and arguably a human being is not a human being without factoring in the addition of the trillions of said organisms that necessarily inhabit our own bodies. It appears there is absolutely no moral position on the killing of microscopic organisms. So without too much more rambling, we can conclude that sometimes the destruction of life is justifiable, and even in some cases is devoid of moral reprehension.

    But where do we draw that “other” line between justifiable killing of organisms, and wanton cruelty? Looking at what we protect with our laws and customs, in the very vast majority of cases, those organisms deserving of protection and the property “value” generally fall under the following guidelines:
    1) The organism is multicellular, complex, has a functioning brain, and isn’t an insect
    2) The organism can feel pain
    3) The organism is intelligent (and the more intelligent, the more valuable; just look at how we treat pigs versus, say, chimpanzees)
    4) The organism is not suffering (if it is, the rules change, and instead we kill the organism from a moral standpoint)
    5) The organism is not presently threatening the life of a more valuable animal, and especially the organism cannot be threatening the life of a human being.
    6) The organism is a pet (a human has emotional attachment to said organism)

    If the organism in question has any of those characteristics, typically we extend our “value of life” virtue to them. Otherwise, fungi, trees, bacteria, viruses (we still haven’t even decided whether a virus is a life form or not), or any animal that must justifiably die to protect humans or aid in human technological growth, gets the shaft. To illustrate a point about #6, if you have two people in a room, one who stomped on a tarantula in the jungle, and one who stomped on your son’s tarantula, who committed the greater crime? Both crimes are inherently equal, but because of our concept of ownership of animals and because our feelings about animals largely govern our perception of their value, killing someone’s pet is a sin whereas killing this insect in the wild might raise some brows from those who think all life is precious, but for most, it’s an icky spider. Kill it.

    Now I apologize for the lengthy, lecturesque discourse on human perception of the value of lifeforms, but heres where I tie in to our discussion of the fetus. First off, the latest you can legally get an abortion varies from state to state in the US, so we must acknowledge that under current legal guidelines, it’s possible to abort a fetus with a beating heart or partially developed brain. While arguing against the morality of this is outside the scope of my stated position on abortion here, it’s relevant enough to mention as a consideration. For the sake of this argument however, we will assume the fetus is completely undeveloped, and that the undeveloped brain has not developed sufficiently to develop any kind of consciousness necessary to experience any kind of pain or suffering or fear that may or may not even be developed neurologically at this point. In this state, the fetus fails to qualify for meeting any of the 6 general requirements for having value as a life form, except perhaps the 6th. While mothers don’t typically think of their fetus as a pet, undoubtedly all mothers, pro choice or pro life, usually have some emotional attachment to their unborn baby, even as early as the fetus stage. As such, the value of the fetus inside the womb in this case is largely defined by the woman who holds the fetus in her body, as well as the male partner who may have attachment to the fetus as well. Taking a closer look at this relationship, it becomes clear right away that the basis of this attachment is that human beings tend to view unborn infants as human beings, even to the point of viewing an unconscious multicellular blob as a human being.

    Now again as a reminder, we exclude the religious anti birth control arguments, and so with that in mind I will now proceed to point out that in mainstream society, birth control is not only seen as acceptable, but in some cases birth control is viewed as a right human beings have and is viewed as a decision that benefits potential children, even though it prevents sperm and ova from uniting, and thus, prevents a potential human being from being born. But present in the argument that a fetus is a “human in development” is a steep slippery slope. Where is the boundary between in development and not? What is the technical, scientific, logistic foundation of this distinction? Essentially humans seem to view a fetus as a developing human, a zygote as a developing human, and sperm and ova as “reproductive cells.” But isn’t a zygote or an underdeveloped fetus little more than a collection of parts? If we imagine the building if a human being as the unpacking of furniture in a house, and if we analog a bunch of cells meeting the requirements for “being human” with the house meeting the requirement for “being furnished” we have an interesting revelation. We can imagine sperm and ova, separate, as furniture in the moving fan. We can imagine a zygote as having all the boxes and furniture brought into the house, and we can imagine an underdeveloped fetus as having some of the major pieces of furniture moved to their relative final resting positions, with the vast majority of boxes still packed and sitting against walls at odd angles. In this state, is the house furnished? No. In this state, is the house in the process of being furnished? Yes. Is it technically a “furnished house in development”? And there is the big semantics problem that helps aid in the confusion of how we label things “alive” or “human” or “having value intrinsic to life.” The house is not a “furnished house in development” but is actually a “unfurnished house going through the process of being furnished.” In this same way, although we may say a fetus is a “human in development” in reality, it is a chunk of cells that doesn’t meet any of the unwritten currently standing moral or legal requirements necessary to bestow it protection (namely the 6 things listed earlier). It is however, “a chunk of cells in the process of becoming a human” rather than a human in development.
    Now to be fair, nothing is black and white, and using our furniture example again, if 95% of the boxes are unpacked (and how many people manage to get even this much unpacked within the first year? Or ever :P), we will often consider the house unpacked, even though this is not strictly true. As such, we can assume that somewhere during that 9 months, the developing chunk of cells graduates to the condition of “human being” sometime before the human is actually born. When unpacking the house, however, usually the distinction between “unfurnished” and “furnished” rests on the qualification that most of the “essentials” are unpacked and in their proper places. The definition of how many “essentials” will vary from person to person, but the majority of people would be able to draw a line at a certain point where most would justifiably say the house is still unfurnished. As such, no sharp line can exist in defining when a human being becomes a human during the developmental process, but no line can ever exist at all until scientists, religious leaders, and thinkers abroad come to a consensus about what “essentials” constitute a human being. And clearly, an underdeveloped fetus does not have these essentials.
    So to recap, here are the major points of the argument, which you may snarl and disappointingly assert that I could have used to briefly summarize my position, but I feel that all of the above was necessary to “set the stage” for these points:
    1: A fetus is not a human being, and in fact is less complex and intellectually capable than most bugs we regularly squash without second thought.
    2: A fetus does not meet the unwritten qualifications we humans most often employ in determining whether a life form has value or not, with the exception of the last qualification, in that a woman and/or man may have an emotional attachment to the fetus, which then gives the fetus value in the same way that a pet lizard or tarantula has value (the value comes solely from our emotional attachment to the organism, and not the other 5 qualifying factors)
    3: At some point during development in the womb, the unborn child reaches the condition of humanity. This boundary line is completely undefined in modern society, and as a result people confusingly associate a bundle of cells with a human being, and other people believe it is justifiable to abort a new born baby.
    4: The most important thing to recognize is that abortion is a legal issue, not a religious one. Abortion is about the legal rights of unborn human beings, and whether or not adult humans have the right to determine whether a fetus should live or not, pending our societal decision of where the boundary between cellular chunk and human being lies. Abortion is not about “what Jesus would do” and it is not about “valuing all life,” because in the case of the latter, I have laid down the foundation for a huge argument indicating that a fetus actually falls under the qualifications of those organisms we DON’T award any value to.
    5: Abortion should and will remain a viable birth control option. Since the majority of society acknowledges that condoms, the pill, and other forms of contraceptives are not only morally justifiable but in some cases morally preferred, the expulsion of a cluster of cells that does not qualify as a human being, or even a lifeform of value at that, is justifiably birth control, and is no worse than using spermicide.
    So that’s basically my case for pro-choice. Verbose, I know, probably could use a lot of condensing, and I’ll forgive all the “tldr”s and lack of commenting indicating having not even bothered to read it as a result.


    1. Wow. That was really good. I just liked being pro-abortion because I like the idea of homemade jam and because I’d probably kill myself if I couldn’t suck the thing out. Yours actually made sense.


  47. Wow that was really verbose… I’m sorry >_< Deuce, if you want to delete that, I’d be happy to rewrite and repost it more concise and readable.


  48. I think you might want to read my War on Terr’r Part 4 post. There’s a hidden, and sometimes unconscious, agenda within the anti-abortion stance. The anti-abortion and anti-birth control types tend to have an unspoken (though sometimes spoken) assumption that women who have sex ought to face consequences, so talking to them about science or law won’t work.


  49. Whether or not there’s a purposeful agenda, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if some of the people who are anti-abortion also have sexist view points; it comes with the territory. Especially die hard catholics who don’t advocate any kind of birth control… consider that the pope just a week or so ago announced that anyone who ordains a woman priest will be excommunicated. When the foundation of your belief system is a book of stories, many of which are covertly or in most cases overtly sexist, its not a surprise that sexism will dominate your beliefs. Thanks to women, who not only betrayed God but betrayed Adam’s trust as well (he just took the apple because he trusted her), man fell. The hierarchy preached in many Christian churches is God, Jesus, Man, Woman.
    That an infinitely intelligent being would purposefully create one gender to be inferior to the other blows my mind. I guess God truly is an awesome God.

    So religious bull crap aside, I still maintain one of the biggest holes in the pro-life argument is this distinction that the fetus is supposedly a human being.

    Here’s an idea: why don’t we hold women legally accountable for their miscarriages? Isn’t it callous to assume that the embryo “just didn’t develop right”? I mean, how many miscarriages are due to a woman making bad diet choices leading up to and during the pregnancy? If abortion is murder, isn’t miscarriage murder by neglect? If abortion is the murder of a human being, where is the paperwork we have to fill out when miscarriages happen? Clearly, a human being has died here.


    But of all the problems with pro-life, my biggest one is this:

    Why, WHY, does a pro-lifer CARE about what other people are doing?

    I love the bumper sticker “Don’t like abortion? Don’t get one.” I really don’t understand how people can justify themselves in telling other people that they’re wrong for killing a bundle of unconscious cells.

    “Someone out there wants that child, even if you don’t” Bullcrap. How many poor, impoverished kids don’t get adopted, from our country or others? And sure our population can just keep rising forever. At current growth rates, the population doubling rate is less than a century. But didn’t God say “be fruitful and multiply”? Surely God wouldn’t let something happen to us if we continued to do just that.

    Urgh. Now I’M starting to rant :P


  50. Very interesting string of responses, provided a good read :). I just laugh in the faces of “pro-lifers” and point my finger, and walk away.
    If these “pro-lifers” care so much about life, then they should spend their wasted hours taking care of the millions upon millions of children in orphanages in Russia or China, or the children in Africa who are dying for lack of water, food, or medical care. Until they prove to me that they REALLY care for life, I just see how many creative ways I can piss them off.


  51. I realize I’m coming rather late to this conversation, and that my comment is somewhat besides the point of (and by that I mean ‘completely besides the point’). As both an athiest and an agnostic (they are not mutually exclusive), I’d like to respond to this specifically:

    “(I also don’t think much of atheism for the same reason — anyone who claims to know there isn’t a god is just as arrogant and silly as anyone who claims to know there is).”

    Atheists (at least the ones I know and whose work I’ve read) don’t claim to know there is no god, they only claim to believe there is no god. It may seem like splitting hairs; perhaps it is, but, while a line may be fine, it’s still a line, and in this case, an important one.

    This blog entry illustrates the difference between belief and knowledge far better than I ever could:


    I think this is a distinction too many people (especially those on the theist side of the debate) miss, purposefully or otherwise, but it’s a very important distinction to make.


  52. Young girls and women do use abortion as birth control. I almost had an abortion, and not one, but two women sitting next to me confided this was their ump-teenth time. One woman was @ 40, black and poor/unkempt looking. The other was @15, white, lower/middle class(with her mom on her 3rd visit in one year to get an abortion- what is wrong with that picture?).Why is it abortion makes people start telling you their crap life stories. UGH. I’m wondering now if the reason I didn’t abort my daughter is because I wanted to get the hell away from the other women in the room.

    Anyway, children are rarely convenient and certainly my life would be different if I’d had the balls to have an abortion, which I didn’t. I was raised in the bible belt by non-religious parents and STILL it’s taken me to the age of 30 to think abortion is okay. I’ve always been pro-choice, but there is a difference between believing/supporting an ideal and doing it. I couldn’t do what I believed I had the right to do. The pro-forced labor camp brainwashes through osmosis or something, I don’t know, but the guilt is inescapable and undeserved.

    On a positive note, I saw a young girl come into PP while I was waiting and literally dump the entire basket of free condoms into her over-sized purse. I was like, “hell, yeah! Go girl, get you some.” :)


  53. You’ll probably never read this, but atheism isn’t claiming to know there isn’t a god or gods, its lack of beleif. And there is a difference.


    1. Well…there are a number of mutually incompatible definitions used about that. What you are describing often falls under agnosticism.


  54. Stumbled here.
    I love this post by the way. It really says a lot of things I’ve been thinking recently. I like the anti-american branding. It’s like a hilarious reverse of the Glenn Beck crazies. It also reminds me of Colbert, which is quite the compliment.
    For anti-abortionists to say that they are “pro-life” is often a lie, because they don’t care about the lives of the mothers, or of the children after they are born, and most of them support the death penalty as well, which is ridiculous. And even if they do think that abortions are so terrible, what gives them the right to force that opinion on everyone else, and to deny the option to others? It’s like the people who oppose gay marriage. Their religion might say it’s wrong, but mine doesn’t, so why should I have to follow their moral wishes? The job of the law is to protect people, not to decide personal morality.

    And I know everyone has already said this, but atheists don’t “know that there is no god.” They think that the concept of a god is not likely enough to merit belief, in the same way that you do not believe in an invisible elephant in your room. It’s possible that one could exist (just as it’s possible a god could exist) but it isn’t probable enough for you to worry about. I personally have never met an atheist that is 100% sure there is no god. Even Richard Dawkins doesn’t make that claim, and he’s about the most prominent atheist you’ll find.

    But other than that, it’s a fabulous article.


  55. “I also don’t think much of atheism for the same reason — anyone who claims to know there isn’t a god is just as arrogant and silly as anyone who claims to know there is”

    Atheism is a belief or assumption there is no god, it doesn’t claim to know anything. Gnostic atheists know there is no god, agnostic atheists accept there could be a god but choose not live their life on the assumption there is, which is what a lot of people live as. Don’t bother with the ‘butit’swhatsomepeopledefinetheiratheismaskthnx” thing, Atheism isn’t a philosophical position.

    Yeah, did you just try to offend as many people as possibly in this arrogant post? I find your tone incredibly irritating, to be frank, if you want to educate the uneducated, calling them anti-American and terrorists isn’t going to work, and you’re just going to put people off your stance altogether, that’s just the way it is.

    I happen to agree with most of your points, the over-population of the earth, the choosing an adult over an unformed child. But really, did you have to make yourself sound so intellectually retarded? You sound like a troll attempting to write an essay.


    1. “Atheism isn’t a philosophical position.”

      Except when it is…there are lots of people who use the word in conflicting ways, it’s not a mater of a small group using it incorrectly.

      “if you want to educate the uneducated, calling them anti-American and terrorists isn’t going to work”

      Correct, but there’s nothing much that ND can do that would. And…”terrorists” isn’t an incorrect label for quite alot of them (though, yes, not all of them fit that heading).

      Anti-American…I’d say that ND is more guilty of that, in that she obviously hates freedom. Specifically the freedom to discriminate against women, which is one of the most important freedoms people/men in America have. C’mon, ND, it’s in the Bible and everything. Washington wasn’t a feminist so it’s obviously wrong.

      “I happen to agree with most of your points, the over-population of the earth, the choosing an adult over an unformed child. But really, did you have to make yourself sound so intellectually retarded? You sound like a troll attempting to write an essay.”

      Ok, yeah, I tend to agree with you on this, and it’s a technique that ND, IMHO, overuses immensely.


  56. I just disagree with you on one thing…disagreeing is part of what being an American is–even if you are wrong or right. They are terrorists because they blow up clinics and scare women and coerce them into believing they are soulless monsters if they make the choice to not bring another life into the world unprepared and utterly destroying their own in the process.

    Men are coercing women through education [or lack of] and through strict dogma. It’s more complicated than you can imagine.


  57. I’ve already published my pro-choiceness elsewhere on this blog. For the sake of staying on topic, I’ll summarize:

    Abortion is the act of deciding who gets to be in my body. Rape is wrong, it is wrong because I am forced to share my body against my will. Compulsory pregnancy is wrong because I am forced to share my body against my will. No one has the right to access my body without my express consent. My body is not a democracy. You do not get a vote.

    Terrorism of women by men. There is a book called Coercive Control: How Men Entrap Women in Personal Life. I don’t remember if I posted about it elsewhere on this blog; I’m tired. This book examines domestic violence through a lens usually reserved for kidnapping, prisoners of war, victims of hostage situations, and frames it for what it is: domestic terrorism, through which men control women in millions of households against their will and against their basic human dignity. It covers domestic violence. It’s important to underscore that this book examines at length female-against-male violence and still determines that there exists no synonym for what males do to females, and why this is so. It goes on to point out in detail how society is structured to collude in male entrapment of females, for example, pointing out that people often ask “Why doesn’t she leave him?” instead of “Why won’t he let her go?” and other victim-blaming practices that willfully fail to challenge male abuse of female rights to liberty in all forms. Motivations, psychological effects upon survivors, social stigmatization of victimhood – it’s all there. An expose of the modus operandi of manly privilege incarnate. If I already talked about it here, sorry – I submit humbly for moderation. Otherwise…

    Check it out.


  58. I’ve just started reading this blog and am trying to catch up by reading backwards, so I imagine few other readers will see this comment. It is mostly humor and idle speculation and I hope that you will respond to whichever of the various ideas appeal. First of all, let me say that the definition that a person once it can /exist/ without infringing on another person, i.e., once it is born, is logically as obvious to me as it should be to anyone who believes in human rights. It does lead to an interesting train of speculations, though: what about the possible near-future technology of uterine replicators? If we had those available, would a pregnant woman be required to place her embryo in one rather than aborting it? I /think/ the answer should be “yes, as long as she does not have to pay for it” (and she already doesn’t have to raise the baby if she doesn’t wish to).

    I don’t mind admitting that I would love to have a child of my own using a uterine replicator. But surely when we do get them they will be expensive, so not available to every fetus. That means that there is effectively no difference from a fetal-rights perspective between the fetus whose mother says “I want to use an artificial uterus to gestate this child and can pay for it” vs. “I don’t want to gestate this child in my body [so it is the public responsibility to ensure that it is born]”. After all, the child can live without a human host, so it now has a right to life: but that life will cost money. Does it boil down to a health-care issue because the uterine replicator counts as medical support? You know, the kind of thing where rich people can get replacement organs and thus survive…

    Also, I don’t understand why people who make the argument that a fetus has the potential to be a person see conception as the magic point and not anything earlier. What about the potential in each of the million ova in a woman’s body, in possible combination with the million sperm in each of a man’s ejaculations? Not to mention the fact that you’re missing out on possible children by not forcing every male and female pair to have sex with each other.


  59. “First of all, let me say that the definition that a person once it can /exist/ without infringing on another person, i.e., once it is born, is logically as obvious to me as it should be to anyone who believes in human rights.”

    You mean “I’m right, so everyone else is obviously wrong”? Not a very useful statement.

    Throughout history, there’s been any number of views about this issue.

    For example, when you say “once it can exist”, what does that mean? Exist totally unaided? Exist with an arbitrary amount of medical care, possibly whatever happens to be the most advanced at the time?

    Millenia ago in Greece, a foetus wasn’t considered a baby (IIRC) until several days after birth, because of the massive amount of deaths that would occur during that time. That seems like a reasonable viewpoint to me.

    Additionally, due to the length of development after birth, there’s the view that it takes some time for a baby to become a person, rather than a potential. Also not an unreasonable viewpoint.


  60. I thought it should be obvious because anyone can take care of a new-born baby, whereas the developing fetus is dependent specifically on its mother. Thus if the fetus is to live, she has no choice but to keep it in its body. On the other hand, the survival of a new-born (or, as I was speculating, a fetus in an artificial uterus) can become the public responsibility because it does not depend on any /particular/ human. I depend on the current economic systems of the world in order to survive; I don’t think I would do very well hunting and gathering. However, much as I love her I don’t need my mother anymore; thus my right to survive does not infringe on her right to live as she wishes. I don’t understand why this is not the obvious deciding factor. Care to clarify further?


  61. Hmm- where would I be without abortion rights? Fucked, that’s where.

    I fell pregnant to my (now ex) boyfriend at 17 or 18. I absolutely knew this was not the right thing for me life and that if I had a child while still BEING a child myself, I would screw it’s life up… and anyway, I didn’t WANT a kid!

    Also, I found out at 19 that this boyfriend of mine had gone to a strip club. He KNEW how against all that kind of stuff I was and that I was a rad fem. S0 I broke up with him. What would have happened if I had a kid with him? Would I have had to STAY with that creep? Wreck the child’s life by not having a father around?

    Whatever. My life would have been ruined. I’m am so glad abortion exists.


  62. I consider myself pro-life, but not necessarily anti-abortion. To label all who don’t share your same viewpoint “anti-American” seems very close-minded to me. The mother is the most important person when it comes down to the wire, especially if going through with the birth could be harmful to her health. It should be her decision to go on with the pregnancy, but the welfare of the child should be taken into consideration. I’m the result of a failed abortion, and my mother said to me after I found out that she couldn’t be happier that it failed. No hard feelings, at all. I love her to death, but it gives me perspective on the issue I think sometimes gets lost. The mother has a choice, but the unborn child has rights to. How many? Well, in the end, that’s the essential question, and no one is going to agree.


  63. “During court proceedings, the prosecutor asks the boy’s father, “Is it not true that your wife nearly died giving birth to your son, and that the doctor came in to ask you which of them you wished to save?” (Yeah fucking right, I know). And the father replied, “Yes, and I said to save my wife, because we could have another child.” ”

    This bothers me because it reminds me of a story I heard from a co-worker. This lady is in her 70s, and she had her only child (a girl) back in the early 60s. Her daughter was a wanted child, and this lady and her husband tried to have get pregnant more than once, but suffered infertility problems. Anyway, the daughter’s birth was extremely difficult, and at one point, the doctors did not think my co-worker would survive the birth. The doctors asker her husband, “If we can only save one-your wife, or the baby-which one would you choose?” Her husband said, “My wife, of course!” My co-worker and her husband were and are happily married, and it was great her husband chose her. However, I assumed my co-worker was in a coma or otherwise incapacitated somehow where she couldn’t make that choice. To my horror, my co-worker said that she was awake and aware of her situation the entire time. She didn’t even know they asked her husband that question until after she gave birth! I mean, I know this was the 60s, and abortion was legal, but I couldn’t believe she wasn’t even given that choice! Yet, her husband was? WTF? In fact, why was he even asked at all? Even if the mother was in a coma, you would think the assumption would be to save the mother’s life at all cost over that of the baby UNLESS THE MOTHER’S WISHES WERE STATED OTHERWISE BEFORE THE BIRTH. But the fact that this lady was conscious, aware, and could talk the whole time, but wasn’t even asked makes me want throw-up! That really upset me! That just sounds so fucked up! I couldn’t get over it.


  64. If my mother had successfully aborted me, I wouldn’t know the difference.

    That’s another really important “point to keep in mind.”


  65. I didn’t read every comment, so this argument may have already been voiced by another commentor, but here is how I see abortion:

    No one would force another to donate half of zer liver–even if doing so would save someone else’s life, even if that other person was a child, and even if that person was a relative. Like organ donation, pregnancy is dangerous. Your uterus belongs to *you* not the fetus or anyone else. If we don’t force people into organ donations, how can we force wimmin to donate their entire bodies for 9 months?

    Also, I’ve heard this before but it should be repeated: If men could get pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament.



  66. Nine Deuce – I’ve just recently over the last few weeks/months began reading your blog after seeing it linked to a thousand times on other feminist sites. It’s been taking me a while to read through everything because I also try to read all the comments (though I may skip the occasional dissenting derail when it gets too whiny) since they’re often as good as the posts themselves. I agree with you on almost everything, but not much of it (porn and BDSM critiques, etc.) blows me away because I’ve seen it a thousand times before. That’s not an insult by any means. You’re a great writer and I’m so appreciative of you and all the other feminist bloggers that take the time to write this shit out. This post however just officially made you a hero of mine.

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen another person refer to themselves as pro-abortion, which is exactly what I am for all the reasons you’ve stated here. I also love the un-American spin you put on it (as un-American as I am myself).

    Today I was listening to the radio on scan (which I always do because I can never find anything good) when I happened across a talk show where the host was interviewing someone who hosts some nutjob anti-abortion website. Apparently this site lists, among other things, the locations of all abortion clinics in the country. The host (a woman, which I find even more sad) was saying how great it was that people can find these places if they want to organize a protest or “counsel” women. And all I could think is “how do these people not see that this is terrorism?”

    A few weeks ago on my way to Planned Parenthood for the follow up for my medication abortion, there were a few of these nutjobs standing on the road outside with their ridiculous signs and such. I’m happy to tell you that I was screaming “fuck you!” through my window as I drove past.

    Really, when I hear this stuff on the radio or see these people outside, I want to call in or stop and ask them “So you’re against abortion? What have you done today to stop unplanned pregnancies? How many birth control prescriptions did you pay for or how many free condoms did you hand out? What are you doing to improve sex education so women don’t get into these situations in the first place?” Or to really rile them up for kicks, as my boyfriend suggested, stop on the way out and say “Hey guess what?! My abortion worked!” If only I wasn’t fearing for my life because you have no idea what these maniacs – I mean terrorists – will do.

    Sorry to be so long-winded. This sums up my pro-abortion stance quite nicely (since I had a miscarriage while waiting for my abortion appointment about 5 years ago):

    Insurgence: 2, Fetus: 0


  67. Abortion is caused by men. Literally because they chose to ejaculate when and where they did, and figuratively because they have treated women so badly and abandoned and/or abused so many women and children that abortion was going to end up happening more. Also, abortion does serve males. They can fuck and run, as it were. They don’t have to be responsible for their dick snot. They don’t have to pay for the kids. They can even demand that a woman abort a child and if she refuses, kill her. Yep, that’s happened. Abortion is a “get out of fatherhood free” card. They can fuck with wild abandon as many women as they want, it is truly a great gift to men everywhere.


  68. I have very radical thoughts on abortion. VERY. And undoubtedly everyone (without exception!) will be offended by what I think concerning it.
    This is my opinion formulated over 40 years of life on this planet with all the bullshit that goes on. For better or worse wrong or right and whatever that even means.
    I am not pro or anti anything concerning abortion in general. I can’t possibly equate my position to either label. One foot is on the “pro life” side and one is on the “pro abortion choice” side.
    On the one hand I use science to tell me if a fetus is alive. Yes, it is. I use science to tell me if it’s human. Yes, it is. I use science to tell me what will become of it if left to its own devices. It grows into what we label a “person/baby/kid/child/eventual adult”. No other cells combined this way in the human body will ever do this on their own, so this is a unique set of cells. (This is important.)
    So we have a living, human set of cells dividing and growing on its way to viability.
    Some say it is a parasite, but I don’t see it that way. A parasite to me is something foreign that latches onto a body and takes from it until that body can not sustain it anymore. The parasite is not or need not be infantile. The parasite can be a fully mature or adult entity with no more growth happening. It can just be sustaining itself. One could say it would be more like a grown adult latching on to another and taking resources from them until they are drained dry. A parasite lives off the host but doesn’t necessarily need the host to mature and once mature the parasite does not drop off and go to college. It continues nourishing itself on the host.
    I’m not a microbiologist and that’s my understanding of a parasite. I don’t see w human fetus as the same thing because the fetus is not meant to be attached to the host for the duration of its life, nor does it drain the host to the point of death. I see the fetus as having a symbiotic relationship to the mother. It is growing exactly where it naturally is meant to (there IS no other place it can grow). Calling it a parasite takes away its nature and seems to label it as something hostile, something foreign. It’s not foreign. It is doing exactly what it was always meant to do, the only thing it CAN do. The natural reproductive process is what it is. I believe that because of males ruining life for females, females have come to see their own reproductive process as a hostile thing which is acting against them.
    Biology allows males to walk away. It does not allow females the same option. So we created abortion to level the playing field.
    Now I have already decided that “it” is human and alive. If it were not alive, you would not need an abortion. If it were not human it would be a foreign object and would not ever grow into an infant/toddler and so on. If it were not made of those special cells that can only comprise a human being, it would be a tumor and you wouldn’t need an abortion.
    So it’s a human offspring/baby. Not developed enough to live independently from the mother, but growing toward that eventuality. It is inevitable because those cells are designed to do just that.
    What do I do now that I consider this a human baby (easiest language for me so I’m using it)?
    Well I read Roe v Wade and what really struck me was that they even acknowledged that no one could decide on the “soul” as it were, the “personhood”, the moment when the cells went from being nothing to something, and something that should be allowed to grow to viability. No one, NO ONE was capable of knowing this.
    So the case was decided on the implied right to privacy. The woman was granted the right to decide for HERSELF if the cells were valuable to her or not. And I use this word a lot because it’s the most important word in the abortion debate: VALUE.
    There is either value in those cells or not. Roe answered the question of who gets to decide that value, and it’s the woman who would have to gestate the cells to viability, being there is no other option at this time. This is I think what women mean when they talk about choice and having control over your own body.
    Now to me, if you abort those cells, you’re aborting a baby. But I also acknowledge that you have the legal right to decide the value of that baby. (And I’m not using “baby” to be provocative, I just think of it that way.)
    I DO have a problem once the cells reach the time of viability since the crux of the matter always seemed to be the “parasitical” nature of the fetus needing the mother. What happens when it no longer needs the mother? I believe at this point an abortion would be most akin to a murder since there is no longer a symbiotic need and the cells have grown enough to be independent of the mother. If the mother’s body is no longer necessary in that equation, allow the separate human to be free of her and to live independently of her body. This makes things very sticky because the separation between baby and mother is completed, and we have to acknowledge this thing has a life of its own now.
    (It does not take into account how the women will raise the kid or provide/pay for etc. That’s another aspect I don’t have time to talk about just yet).
    I understand wanting and needing autonomy over your own body. I do think that in cases where it’s either the baby or the mom, the mom should not be ashamed to put her own life first. (I admit I am not the saint I wish I was and if faced with that decision I can’t say I’d put the baby ahead of myself. My mom would be APPALLED.)
    I have a lot of opinions concerning birth control and other stuff but this is where I am on abortion right now. I’m not about saving the life of the baby at the cost of the mother in every circumstance or shaming her for wanting to live, and I’m also not about saying the baby is a parasite which is an enemy of the woman. I’m not about saying it isn’t alive or isn’t human because I think you have to be a special kind of moron to insist on something so unscientific. Naomi Wolff called abortion “justifiable homicide.” I suppose I must stand tentatively in that camp. I hate the idea of having to abort a kid. I think abortion should be RARE but not because we stop women from having them but because we are more capable of preventing pregnancies in the first place.
    The other question I consider a lot is who will take care of all the unwanted children? It’s not enough to say let them live when their parents for whatever reason may be unfit or unable to care for them. I’m a huge believer in women having careers and money BEFORE having kids. BEFORE having a man in her life. Find yourself first. Protect yourself first. THEN bring others in. Don’t get married thinking HE will provide and protect and be everything you need. A lot of the time even married women have to deal with their husbands acting like children when they have children because they become jealous of the mother’s attention to the child. Which is batshit nuts and proves my point that males are just babies in man suits and wives simply become “fuckable mothers” to them. They don’t want a baby competing for attention and toys.
    This is just the tip of the iceberg on the subject of abortion. All in all right now I don’t tell any woman to get one or not. I would tell her to talk to her doctor, weigh her options etc. If it’s truly her decision then it would be wrong of ME to impose my opinions on her in that moment, anyway. I could no more tell her to abort than not.


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