Tiller Understood the Complexity of Women’s Realities


Below the breathless rhetoric
of anti-choice extremists, there has been a quiet – yet swelling – murmuring
this week.  These are the voices of women who seek later abortions,
the voices of Dr. George Tiller’s patients.  These are
the voices that matter. 

The stories emerging are of
women and men and couples and families, some of whom would never have
considered themselves supporters of abortion access.  Some are
stories of extreme poverty that prevented women from reaching abortion
providers within the first trimester -a s low-income women, rural women,
and young women are far likelier to seek later abortions due to the
significant obstacles they face in obtaining care.   

Others are stories of severe
health risks, medical necessity, fetal abnormality.  But whatever
a woman’s (or couple’s or family’s) reason was for entering the
Women’s Health Care Services in Wichita, she encountered only kindness. 
Understanding.  Respect.  Professionalism.   

One person standing in front
of another, asking for help, and finding compassion. One person saying,
"I need this," and the other person saying, "I will provide you
with what you need."   

The high-pitched keening of
"baby killer" is utterly irrelevant here.  Irrelevant, too,
are our own biases about which abortions are necessary, justifiable,
or merciful. When faced with real families and real stories and the
dazzling complexity of women’s lives, the one-dimensional slogans
and false righteousness of the extreme anti-choice movement are revealed
again as flimsy and hollow distractions that disregard women’s realities
and dignity. 

Women’s reasons for obtaining
abortion care are as varied as the spectrum of human experience. 
And while Dr. Tiller was a compassionate caregiver for thousands of
women in crisis situations, he believed strongly that abortion was a
right belonging to all women.  In a rare 2001 public statement,
Dr. Tiller said, "This battle is about self-determination by women
of the direction and course of their lives and their family’s lives.
Abortion is about women’s hopes and dreams. 

"Abortion is a matter of
survival for all women."   

A climate in which any woman’s
sovereignty over her own body is questioned is a climate hostile to
the rights and futures of all women.  Access to competent
and compassionate abortion care-financial access, medical access,
legal access, and cultural access-is an issue of dignity and human
rights.  Dr. Tiller understood this. 

There is a certain hubris to
claiming that we can anticipate our reactions to every future situation. 
And true humility comes from respecting that women’s lives are their
own-only they truly know what they can handle.  Dr. Tiller was
a champion to those who needed him, and a symbol of integrity and nobility
and grace to many others.  May we all be so fortunate as to find
a compassionate champion like Dr. Tiller in our times of need.   

At the request of Dr. Tiller’s
clinic and our friends and supporters, the National Network of Abortion
Funds created the George Tiller Memorial Abortion Fund on late Sunday
evening after Dr. Tiller’s murder.  Information about the Fund
can be found at www.nnaf.or/tiller.html

The National Network of
Abortion Funds is an affiliation of 104 abortion Funds in 41 states,
the District of Columbia, Mexico, Canada, and the UK, including an international
web-based Fund.  The Network and our member Funds worked closely
with Dr. Tiller’s office for decades.

Like this story? Your $10 tax-deductible contribution helps support our research, reporting, and analysis.

  • invalid-0

    “Abortion is a matter of survival for all women.”

    A statement that would be more meaningful had Tiller run a not-for-profit clinic. But at $6000 for a late term procedure, we can only surmise that his business must have been pretty healthy. He testified in 2003 that he did over 300 late term abortions a year.

  • invalid-0

    Ina’s comment is a non sequitir. Whether “abortion is a matter of survival for all women” or not has zilch to do with whether or not Dr. Tiller made a living providing this service under the conditions which have, finally, killed him and the hope of relief for women in extremely, unimaginably painful situations.

  • emma

    Ina, he also took patients who couldn’t afford to pay.

    I’m not sure exactly what it is with anti-choicers who seem to expect abortion providers to work for free. Do you expect the same from other types of doctors, Ina? You’re not being a hypocrite, are you?

  • invalid-0

    Listening to those who can’t speak for themselves is instuctive, Like the voices of women how don’t have the backing of old money to make their voices heard, to the little girls in countries who don’t allow abortions have children before they are ready for it mentally or physically, to women who were taken before their time by cancer or other treatable problems because they didn’t know they had options, because that infomation was witheld from them.

    I would love to hear those voices, but I doubt I ever will.

  • invalid-0

    Thank you, Erin Kate Ryan, for reminding us that this is about women’s lives–all women’s lives. Why do women seek abortion care? This is a distraction. It matters not why women seek abortion. A woman has the right to seek abortion care, and Dr. Tiller provided that care, in the face of intimidation, vandalism, harassment, and death threats. He is a hero who respected and trusted women and their choices and his death is a devastating loss.

  • invalid-0

    Abortion is a matter of survival for all women? I find the rhetoric of the pro-abortionists duplicitous. What about the women who will never be born because of “choices” their parents made to snuff out their very existence? I think about my two girls I have. Two girls I had in spite of financial worries. Two girls I had in spite of the fact that both pregnancies were considered “high risk” due to a medical condition my wife has. Choosing life or death isn’t for us to decide. If abortion was truly a matter of survival for all women, every feminist on the planet would be adamently against it.

    The killing of Tiller is a tragedy, but so is the killing of countless girls and boys not yet born.

  • invalid-0

    Just stumbled upon this page and don’t normally comment on these things. But the quote: “Abortion is a matter of survival for all women” seems woefully inaccurate, since millions of women have been aborted in the past few decades. I’ve heard in some countries babies are actually killed simply because they ARE girls and the couple wanted a boy. Abortion undermines the survival for “all” woman.

  • invalid-0

    Thank you, Erin Kate Ryan, for a well-written piece which points out that which desperately needed to be said. Anti-choicers continue to perpetuate the false assumption that late-term abortions are some kind of birth control and nothing more. They refuse to see the truth of just how complex the reasons are behind this legal medical procedure.
    Dr. Tiller was a rare man who in simple terms supported a woman’s right to control her own destiny. Remember – “trust women” (which he put on buttons), was his motto. I hope this tragedy won’t succeed in intimidating other doctors.

  • invalid-0

    The term “anti-choice extremists” reveals how little the author actually knows about the people of the pro-life movement. I wonder if she has ever had any meaningful dialogue with them? The term is not only hateful, it’s libelous and shows her ignorance about any views but her own.

    The pro-life movement is passionate about being opposed to abortion because we believe it is the killing of an unborn boy or girl. Medical science and our own U.S. Senate support this fact …

    * Between 18 and 25 days, the baby’s heart begins to beat.
    * EEGs are able to detect electrical brainwaves as early as 43 days. If the lack of brainwaves indicate death, what does their presence mean?
    * By eight weeks, all of the baby’s body systems, including the brain, are present. They are all functioning one month later.
    * Also at 8 weeks, the baby becomes alert and has a need for sleep. He/she is able to move his hands and arms and make a fist or suck his thumb. The baby can even hiccup!,
    * The baby has his own unique finger prints by the end of 9 weeks.
    * The baby is sensative to heat, touch, light, noise — not to mention pain — by the 11th or 12th week. All body systems are working, and he weighs about 28g and is 6-7.5 cm long.

    Before the mother even notices she’s pregnant (except for obvious indicators like missed periods, etc.), the baby is fully developed.

    The pro-life movement is a loving movement that believes in the sactity of all human life from conception to natural death. Just as God’s Word and all civilized societies say murder is wrong, we too believe that murder is wrong. However, we also believe in patiently telling the truth to those who have been given erroneous information about their pregnancies. We also believe in forgiveness.

    We do not condone taking the law into your own hands. What happened to Tiller was wrong. However, just as those who abort their children need forgiveness, so does the man who killed Tiller. The idea of forgivenss often runs contrary to the way people think, but it is the way the pro-life movement thinks, and fortunately for all of us, it is the way God thinks.

    Note: The reference to the U.S. Senate above can be found in the Official Senate report on Senate Bill 158, the “Human Life Bill”, which states the following: “Physicians, biologists, and other scientists agree that conception marks the beginning of the life of a human being – a being that is alive and a member of the human species. There is overwhelming agreement on this point in countless medical, biological, and scientific writings.”

  • invalid-0

    Look at them, all so concerned for the “women who were never born.” Makes me wonder if they still care about those women once they ARE born. Their record says a big fat no.

    Matthew 7:16 says “By their fruits you shall know them.” We’ve seen the fruits of the anti-choice movement: women being denied affordable and accessible health care; women denied contraception, information, compassion in the face of rape, basic humanity, social services for impoverished women and their children; women at risk from batterers, women being sent back to batterers, and now another murder of a man willing to help women faced with a wanted pregnancy gone horribly, horribly wrong.

    Pro-life my shapely ass. Pro-controlling-women’s-lives is much closer to the truth.

    By their fruits you shall know them. Indeed.

  • therealistmom

    “Physicians, biologists, and other scientists agree that conception marks the beginning of the life of a human being – a being that is alive and a member of the human species. There is overwhelming agreement on this point in countless medical, biological, and scientific writings.”

    Yes, those are the words of SENATORS, not physicians. Also, any biologist will say zygote/ embryo is alive… so are the egg and sperm that joined together to make the zygote. It is a unique member of the human species- of course it is, it’s a new set of DNA that has never been seen before. The joining of a human egg and human sperm isn’t going to result in a canine zygote. That is the context- not that “it’s a baby”.

    Now, let’s go over some of these other falsehoods. If all these things you claim occur so early really DID happen this early, why would Homo sapiens need a 40 week pregnancy?

    * Between 18 and 25 days, the baby’s heart begins to beat. *

    From the “Visible Embryo” website, a non-biased pregnancy and fetal development resource:

    SIZE: 2.5 – 3.0 mm

    TIME PERIOD: 23- 25 days post-ovulation

    Thirteen to twenty pairs of somites are present and the embryo is shaped in a modified S curve. The embryo has a bulb-like tail and a connecting stalk to the developing placenta.

    A primitive S-shaped tubal heart is beating and peristalsis, the rhythmic muscle contractions propelling fluids throughout the body, begins. However, this is not true circulation because blood vessel development is still incomplete.

    In other words, that’s not a heartbeat in the sense we conceive of it. There is no blood to circulate, and the tube that is a beginnings of the heart simply contracts. This is less complex than the circulation of an earthworm.

    * EEGs are able to detect electrical brainwaves as early as 43 days.

    This is based on a misinterpretation of a presentation given in 1964, and repeated in obscure texts for some time before it was attached to by the anti-choice movement. This activity that was detected was bipole electric activity across the surface of the brain, and was at closer to 50 days or more. Actual “brain wave” activity is measurable much later. From a New England Journal of Medicine article, “Pain and its effects on the Human Neonate and Fetus”:

    Functional maturity of the cerebral cortex is suggested by fetal and neonatal electroencephalographic patterns…First, intermittent electroencephalograpic bursts in both cerebral hemispheres are first seen at 20 weeks gestation; they become sustained at 22 weeks and bilaterally synchronous at 26 to 27 weeks.

    This is completely in line with the current medical belief that the ability to feel pain probably begins around 27-28 weeks when the central nervous system “hooks up” completely with the brain.

    I could go on but dissecting these kinds of posts gets wearying when I know the person is copy/pasting whatever non-scientific BS they find in “pro-life” literature. If someone truly wants to believe a fetus at less than one inch long, intestines still outside the abdomen, eyes on the sides of its head, no chambered heart, etc is equivalent to a “baby” there isn’t a lot you can do.

  • invalid-0

    What you’re saying about the zygote/embryo is the following:

    1. it’s alive.

    2. it’s a unique member of the human species

    3. It has its own unique blueprint or DNA. It’s an individual.

    4. It can only be a human being, not a canine or some other animal.

    5. BUT, it’s not a baby?

    Aren’t you attempting to play with semantics here? We can call it a baby, zygote, embryo, or fish food. What we call it isn’t important. The fact that it IS a life — and you agree it is — is what’s important.

    If it makes you feel better not calling it a baby, then go ahead and call it what you like, but it doesn’t take away from what is being done to those children. You can’t make it something other than what it is just because what it is doesn’t conveniently fit into your argument.

    What about partial birth abortion? Many of those babies — or embryos — while premature, could have survived. There have been cases of premature births that have survived that are much earlier than what is allowed for the late term, partial birth abortions.

    Have you heard of the case of the botched abortion where the baby didn’t die? They threw it in the trash! But I guess no one wanted it, and what we want apparently defines reality.

    Also, your argument of why a 40-week pregnancy if the heartbeat, etc. began so early is a non sequitur. Just because the baby needs 40 weeks to be born doesn’t mean it isn’t a baby before then. The implication of your statement is that if it can’t sustain itself, it isn’t a human. In that case, babies/children aren’t human for quite a few years after they’re born! If you follow your logic to the end, the elderly in nursing homes aren’t human either because they can no longer care for themselves. Since when do we define the value of life as the ability to care for one’s self?

    You know, there’s a bird nest out in my yard that has one small chick in it. That bird will be ready to fly away on its own in 7-8 weeks. My children will take 18 years or more! Does this mean there’s something wrong with my children? Does this mean they’re not really human until they can survive on their own? Life processes vary from species to species. Pregnancies for humans happen to be 40 weeks, but what if the baby is born at 35 weeks? Is it not yet a baby for another 5 weeks? Gestational periods in no way determine when a baby is a baby.

    On the point of the heart beat and EEG, ultrasounds and other medical devices that my wife and I had access to in hospitals proved without a shadow of the doubt there is a heartbeat. We heard it as early as 10 weeks with both are daughters although the doctor informed us that the heartbeat actually starts much earlier. You just can’t detect it. And the brainwaves? Well that was evident with the equipment the hospital was using also.

    Finally, it comes down to the fact that God values all human life. I noticed one of the other comments mentioned Matthew 7:16. An interesting verse selection from someone who uses “colorful language.”

    Indulge me by quoting one more passage from Scripture:

    “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” (Psalm 139:14-16)

    If God values the zygote/embryo/baby this much, maybe we should too.

  • invalid-0

    Why is it not ok for Pro-Life people to use scripture, but then it is ok for you to use scripture. Not only that, you are using it out of context. That scripture was to the early church regarding false prophets. I am pro-life and have a mother who dedicated a lot of her life to helping women in poor circumstances. You are completely wrong in your assumptions about women.

  • amanda-marcotte

    AMEN!  It’s a travesty that women who are suffering such dire medical conditions that require intensive, expensive surgery should have to pay so much on top of all the other pain they’re suffering.  I’m 100% with you, Ina.  Abortion—birth control, all medical care should be free. 

     

    Of course, doctors have to be paid.  I think we’re all in agreement that such skilled and difficult work should be fairly compensated.  We don’t expect people who offer free services like police and firefighters to do so for free, either.  

     

    The only solution is national health services, such as the kind you find in Canada and England.  But a good first step is repealing the Hyde Amendment, which prevents women on Medicaid from accessing abortion under it. 

  • colleen

    Not only that, you are using it out of context.

    I disagree.

    That scripture was to the early church regarding false prophets.

    Precisely

     

     

     

     

     

    The only difference between the American anti-abortion movement and the Taliban is about 8,000 miles.

    Dr Warren Hern, MD

  • therealistmom

    Well, I’m an Atheist, but I can do that too! Your quotes are about specific pregnancies resulting in Biblical figures. Let’s see how the good ol’ Bible values fetuses.

    If you think your wife is cheating on you, you can perform a “magic spell” that will make her miscarry:

    Numbers 5:19 And the priest shall charge her by an oath, and say unto the woman, If no man have lain with thee, and if thou hast not gone aside to uncleanness with another instead of thy husband, be thou free from this bitter water that causeth the curse:

    5:20 But if thou hast gone aside to another instead of thy husband, and if thou be defiled, and some man have lain with thee beside thine husband:

    5:21 Then the priest shall charge the woman with an oath of cursing, and the priest shall say unto the woman, The LORD make thee a curse and an oath among thy people, when the LORD doth make thy thigh to rot, and thy belly to swell;

    5:22 And this water that causeth the curse shall go into thy bowels, to make thy belly to swell, and thy thigh to rot: And the woman shall say, Amen, amen.

    And here we have the punishment for causing a miscarriage, it is NOT the same as the punishment for murder:

    Exodus 21:22 If men strive [fight] an hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit [fetus] depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.

    The story of Tamar- as horribly misogynistic as it is also shows that a fetus is not considered an independent being, if so her execution would have been postponed until after the birth.

    Genesis 38:24 And it came to pass about three months after, that it was told Judah, saying, Tamar thy daughter in law hath played the harlot; and also, behold, she is with child by whoredom. And Judah said, Bring her forth, and let her be burnt.

    (she did end up not being killed and gave birth to twins, but they were still willing to kill the woman and the unborn fetuses)

    Then there’s all the genocidal stories in the Old Testament where this Jehovah guy tells the Jews that they should get a specific area of land, so go forth and kill everyone and rip the babes from the wombs of the women…

    But back to your cute little question. A baby or infant is a developed human from birth to about age one. What resides in a woman’s uterus is a zygote/ embryo/ fetus, a developing human, having human DNA but completely dependent on being within the womb for its continued development and survival. It is not yet an independent being. Playing coy about “what if it’s 35 weeks” is being silly. The medical establishment says the average human pregnancy is 40 weeks, though an infant can be “full term” as early as 38 weeks and 36 weeks is still considered a healthy pregnancy in many cases. There is a reason it takes extraordinary measures to keep infants alive who are born prematurely- because they are not ready to be born and are not fully developed.

    • airina

      This is slightly off-topic, but I think that all the comments you’ve made in this entry have been awesome, and you gave me some information about fetal development that I didn’t know.  Thanks!

  • invalid-0

    The abortion debate often dissolves into semantics, which I think is beside the point. It becomes a moral issue, but the wrong issue is discussed. The questions, “Is it a baby?” and “Is it a life?” are irrelevant in the broader context. Whether or not abortions are legal, they are going to happen. There is little relationship between the number of abortions in a country and laws restricting access (Abortion in Context, Guttmacher Institute). So if making abortion illegal does not mean abortion will end, what does it mean?

    It means problems for women. If abortion is legal it will be safe. If abortion is illegal, it will often be induced by unskilled people in unsafe ways. So the moral issue is the protection of women, not the protection of the fetus.

    Unsurprisingly, the relationship that does exist is one between the number of unplanned pregnancies and the number of abortions. If we lower the rate of unplanned pregnancies by providing comprehensive sex education and increasing access to contraception, the number will likely decrease. I wish that the anti-abortion rights people would come out in droves on this issue! Here is our potential common ground.

    The debate is also about bodily autonomy. The anti-choice crowd argues that if your actions created the pregnancy, you should be responsible for them. Generally, this is a really great concept in life; I’m a big proponent of accountability. But if I get into a car accident and the other person is injured, I’m not legally required to donate blood, or undergo any type of medical procedure to help them stay alive. I’m not obligated to do this for strangers, friends, family members, or the President of the United States. So the idea that an unwelcome fetus has the right to use my body for nine months as an incubator is legally unprecedented.

  • invalid-0

    Interesting. It’s the same kind of arguement that parents use who say “My kids are going to get drunk and smoke pot, so I’d rather them do it in my house so its safer.” Its just another fundamental difference of values. You said, “So the idea that an unwelcome fetus has the right to use my body for nine months as an incubator is legally unprecedented.” I say, you also aren’t obligated to have sex either…THAT was when you had a choice. You could grow up and be responsible, rather than kill an innocent life becuase you don’t really want to be an incubator. Man, I’m glad my mother is nothing like some of the women on here. She is an amazing woman!!!!

    • invalid-0

      I like to think that if my mother had not wanted to have a child at that point in her life, then she would have had the option of abortion rather than being forced to gestate.

      I am not so selfish as to view the world only in terms of my own existence. If my mother had aborted me then no, I wouldn’t be here to mind. Similarly if my mother had had a headache that night then I wouldn’t have existed either.

  • invalid-0

    The anger from you pro-choicers is unreal. There are good answers to all of the quotes from the Bible. I’ll answer a few for the sake of time, but for all of them, you must read it in the proper context, otherwise you can make the text say anything. (This is true of any literary work.) Let’s talk about the passage from Numbers 5:15-28.

    The woman was suspected of adultery. If brought before a judge, she would have been executed if found guilty. By bringing her to the priest, this was actually an act of mercy since her punishment if guilty would have been far less than death.

    The point of this passage is that sin is serious and must be dealt with. Fortunately, God dealt with sin once and for all with his Son Jesus’ death on the cross (and resurrection.) As Christians, we don’t need to worry about the condemnation for our sins because Jesus took our place. This does not mean, however, that sin doesn’t still have consequences.

    One issue never brought up by pro-choicers is that many woman, after abortions, have to deal with the emotional trauma of the procedure. Why is this? Many girls/women feel tremendous guilt for terminating their pregancies? Why is this? The reason is simple. Instinctively, they know what they did. And just because something is legal doesn’t make it right. There’s a myriad of examples throughout history where the legal thing wasn’t the right thing, but I won’t go there. I’m sure you can use your imagination.

    Let’s take a look at one more — Exodus 21:22-25. You said the punishment for miscarriage is NOT the same as the punishment for murder, but you need to read the whole text in context. The next few verses say, “But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.” Please note that the act of causing the miscarriage may have been accidental , but that doesn’t matter. Thus, in the proper context, if it is proven that any man or woman in America (or anywhere else) accidentally or purposely causes a miscarriage, the punishment is “life for life.” (I in no way am condoning what happened to Tiller. Based on this text, Tiller should have been properly tried in a court of law. I have no time for vigilante justice from anyone.)

    Regarding your comment about my “cute little question,” having to take “extraordinary measures” to keep someone alive does not define their value as a human being. It doesn’t determine whether or not a baby is a baby. If this was the case, there would be a lot of people in emergency rooms that would have suddenly been demoted to something other than human.

    In addition, you can give the living thing inside the womb any definition you want. You can call it a zygote, embryo, baby, or fish food. You can also define baby any way you want. It still doesn’t change the reality that is right in front of you — that the thing inside the womb is a living being that has DNA that is distinctively different from its mother or father. It’s an individual that can wiggle around and think. It can sense its surroundings and can feel pain.

    It comes down to this. I can’t make you accept something that’s right in front of you if you don’t want to see it. There are many destructive behaviors that people hang on to simply because they want the freedom to do it. No one telling them otherwise is going to make them stop.

    I can’t make you stop a destructive behavior, but I can at least warn you about it.

    It’s my prayer that you keep reading the Bible. It’s got some life-changing things in it.

    • invalid-0

      Please can we stop getting so hung up on the idea that individual DNA is a requirement for personhood. Firstly, the genetic makeup of gametes contains a unique selection of the man/woman’s DNA and yet sperm and eggs are not given personhood rights (and I sincerely hope your not suggesting that as it would make women morally obliged to be pregnant constantly from the onset of menarche to the menopause to prevent the ‘killing’ of the egg)

      Secondly, identical twins do not have unique DNA, they share it with their twin. Your logic leads to the absurd conclusion that it is wrong to abort a single pregnancy but to abort one of a multiple pregnancy would be fine as the fetus wouldn’t have unique DNA, being merely a ‘duplicate’ of the other twin.

      These are the contradictions that occur when you try to bend scientific facts to your own ideological ends.

  • invalid-0

    Your efforts to use scientific words to prove that a baby is not a baby fall so short! Do you not see it?

    To those of you using the Bible to support killing a baby:
    I fail to see what “By their fruits you shall know them” has to do with the subject. Perhaps this one:

    “For you (Psalm is addressed to God/Lord) created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;” -Psalm 139:13-14a

    Or this one:

    “The Word of the Lord came to me, saying, ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart'” -Jeremiah 1:4-5

    Is God talking about an impersonal collection of cells here? How can we even THINK about killing someone whom God created and KNEW? Does God here sound like killing a baby in the womb would be a “choice” He would grant us? The obvious truth speaks so loudly here, doesn’t it?

    God forbids murder. That goes for killing a pre-born baby as well as the baby’s killer. Exceptions are government authorized war and punishment, self-defense. It was wrong to kill Dr. Tiller. It is wrong to kill pre-born babies.

  • invalid-0

    “I can’t make you accept something that’s right in front of you if you don’t want to see it.”

    And clearly it doesn’t work the other way, either, because here I am, telling you that my life is complex and full and I carry with me the weight and knowledge of three decades of living, and that I am a moral agent who, in the author’s words, knows what I can handle, knows works in my life, in my circumstances, and yet there you are–telling me that my life and my future and my judgment are worth less than a blatocyst’s.

    It’s extremely silly for someone to claim to know my life better than I do. But I guess I can’t expect that someone who shows such fundamental mistrust women of would have any regard for a word that I say.

    (And if, so help me, you say something idiotic like “don’t have sex!!!!!1111″ then you prove yourself to be exactly as ridiculous as you appear to be.)

  • invalid-0

    “Once shallots have softened and become transparent, add kale and cook only until wilted.” –The Joy of Cooking, p.180

    What does that have to do with your comment, you might ask? About as much as the Bible passages that you quoted have to do with my life and my future. Thanks for playing, though.

  • invalid-0

    First, I said that it was legally unprecedented to force someone to undergo a medical procedure of this magnitude. I choose to drive; if I get into an accident I am still not responsible to donate my organs or tissue.

    Second, I find your “grow up and be responsible” argument myopic. You’re ignoring the myriad of reasons women have abortions, many of which are posted on this site.

    I find the anti-abortion, anti-sex ed position very confusing. This is a genuine question:

    If unplanned pregnancies are the cause for the need for abortion services, then how is utilizing scientific, evidenced-based programming that is proven to reduce those pregnancies not completely in line with the anti-abortion stance?

  • emma

    I wasn’t aware you could abort an adult woman. How does this work?

  • invalid-0

    You are preaching to the choir. I believe in education that doesn’t indoctrinate. I think the option of abstinence should be taught, with a very strong education of safe sex techniques and measures. Anything else isn’t education; it s indoctrination. There are some fundamental differences that I have with pro-choice people. Did you know that less than 10% of abortions are theraputic…the rest are elective. Most pro-choicers don’t care about this though, becuase they view it as an attack on women’s rights. That is where we agree, i don’t think it’s women’s rights, and think there should be increased regulation limiting abortions to theraputic ones and outlawing elective ones. Thanks for your opinion! :)

  • invalid-0

    Pardon; I meant to say that is where we disagree. Thanks.

  • invalid-0

    Sounds good! Now I’m hungry.

  • invalid-0

    You don’t do yourself any good by ignorantly making fun of what was a valid point. He never said you abort adult women, he stated that female babies were being aborted. Everyone knew what he was attempting to say. Congratulations on making yourself look ignorant and mean.

    • emma

      Stefan wrote:

      millions of women have been aborted in the past few decades

      The generally accepted definition of ‘woman’ is ‘adult female’, is it not? Apparently you misread Stefan’s comment, because he did indeed reference ‘aborting women‘.

       

      I’ll concede that I was being bitchy, and I don’t particularly care. Ignorant, though? I don’t think so.

  • invalid-0

    What is it about you (and others like you) that makes you so angry? Where have I shown a “fundamental mistrust of women?” Some of the people in my life whom I trust the most are women! Just because I’m against abortion doesn’t mean I mistrust women. What it means is that I don’t believe anyone should have the right to take someone else’s life. What it means is that I don’t accept the jargon from pro-choicers that say that it’s their body, and they can do what they want with it.

    I believe the baby inside is an individual being protected under our U.S. Constitution just like all the rest of us. (I know there are laws now like Roe v. Wade that say otherwise. I believe laws like these contradict the intent of America’s Founding Fathers.) I believe the baby inside is a human being loved by God like all the rest of us and therefore deserves the same opportunity to live as the rest of us. (This has already been discussed in some depth in previous posts, so I’m not going to go into the details of this position here.)

    You talk as if you are the only person in the world that has problems. Life is tough. You don’t know anything about me either. I find peace in God’s Word, and I’m simply inviting you to do the same. Is there something about my suggestion that makes you angry?

    I understand not everyone reads the Bible. I personally wish they would (in its proper context).

    If anyone should be angry, it’s the pro-life movement. For you, a blatocyst is just a bunch of cells that you can dispose of like unwanted trash. For me (and others like me), it is the very beginning of a human baby’s life.

    It’s been said to me in the past (by others who uphold your position) that the decision to terminate a pregnancy isn’t that easy for pro-choicers. There’s a lot of emotion with it. If this is so, why? If it’s just a bunch of cells with the potential to be human but not yet human, why the emotional attachment?

    I understand our disagreement, but follow me on this one. If you think you’re simply getting rid of an unwanted growth and I think your killing a person, who should be more angry? Yet, it is you who are so angry!

    On your comment about a blatocyst, I don’t think your life and your struggles are worth less than a blatocyst. You are just as important as every other human being — born or not. You are also loved by God like every other human being whether you love God or not. However, since I believe a blatocyst is a very tiny human life, I don’t think the blatocyst’s struggles (especially when it is being killed through abortion) is any less than yours either. I’m not trying to offend with this statement. I’m just stating what I believe.

    As a side note, I am connected with a children’s organization that helps impoverished children all over the world. (I’m talking about children whose families live on $1/day or less and who live in some of the worst slums in the world.) They may be younger than you, but their struggles are not any less than yours just because they haven’t lived as long. It’s the same with the youngest of life in the womb. If someone makes a decision to terminate its life, it’s struggles are also no less than mine or yours or that impoverished child.

    If your life is hard, I’m sorry. If you are angry with God or don’t believe he can exist in an ugly world, I understand. But I’m telling you, God’s Word — the Bible — is the only place you will find peace. That’s why I’m inviting you to give Him a try. After all, what’s the worst that can happen?

  • invalid-0

    Have you tried the health care in Canada and England? You may want to try it before you subject yourself and the rest of us to it.

    Also, who’s going to pay for it? Please don’t say the government because you know as well as I do that by saying “the government” you simply mean the taxpayer.

    Last I checked, we are in a recession. Unemployment is almost at 10% (which means tax revenues are already down) and we are acquiring a national debt so large that we are passing the tab on to our grandchildren.

    Do we really want to increase taxes on the other 90% who are already struggling in this recession? Please don’t say “tax the rich.” The income level used to define “the rich” is dropping faster than the market has dropped, so pretty soon, any of us who has a job will be “rich” and will have our taxes raised.

    As for me, I already have enough bills and taxes to pay — including medical bills. I don’t need a government bureaucrat telling me when, where and how I can get the medical treatment I need.

    You think this doesn’t happen? You think health care in Canada is better than in the U.S.?

    People who support nationalized medicine believe that it will give everyone a “right to health care.” This just isn’t true. In Canada, if you’re waiting patiently in line for services, it doesn’t mean you will get the service in the order in which you’re standing in line. Other people can and do go ahead of you. Why? They have insurance! So in reality, you don’t have a right to any particular service. You’re just another number that will have to wait its turn (and hope someone doesn’t jump the line in front of you). According to the Fraser Institute, almost 900,000 Canadians are on waiting lists to get into hospitals. With a population of 33,487,208 (July 2009 est.), or roughly the population of California, that’s a high percentage of Canadians.

    And what about higher quality?

    Both British and Canadian officials have told their citizens for years that their medical systems are the envy of the world. Fact: Canadian and British doctors see 50% more patients than American doctors do. The result is less time per patient.

    Equal Access?

    In 1980, the British goverment put out a report that said essentially that they hadn’t made much progress in equalizing health care since 30 years prior when Britain’s National Health Service was started.

    More efficiency?

    A good way to measure efficiency is hospital length of stay. If this was the measurement used around the world, the current system in the U.S. would be the most efficient. However, in Britain, where as many as 1 million people could be waiting for hospital admission, 15% of the beds are empty and another 15% are used by patients who have chronic disease who really are using the hospital bed as a very expensive nursing home facility!

    A study that compared Kaiser in California with Britain’s program also showed that while both programs were spending about the same per patient, the Kaiser patient was getting more services.

    Please research the different programs around the world carefully. I don’t want to wait in line for medical services that my family desperately needs when, right now, I can walk right in and get it.

    Nationalized medicine? NO THANKS!

    • emma

      Americans already pay more per capita for health care than people in any other developed country, and 40 million American people have no health insurance. Don’t let right wing scare tactics re ‘socialised medicine’ terrify you into supporting a system that screws over the majority of the population while costing them more money. :)

       

      France is probably a better example of an extremely good national health care system than the UK NHS, though.

  • invalid-0

    So he charged money for the procedure, Ina. And? $6000 is hardly unreasonable, when the guy also provides free medical care to those in need, AND, he had an extremely high overhead thanks to his securty needs.

  • invalid-0

    Roughly 14 million Americans, or more than 1/3 of uninsured Americans that are eligible for Medicaid or State Children’s Health Insurance Programs don’t bother to enroll. Why is this? There are a number of good reasons, but none of them have anything to do with the unavailability of programs.

    So before you impose on all of us a program that will make it more difficult for the other 360 million Americans who have insurance to get the services they need, you may want to have a better understanding of why the uninsured in this country are not covered.

    Also, why is it that every time somebody disagrees with you, you assume they’re using “right wing scare tactics?” My information comes from a reputable organization that would hardly consider itself right-wing.

  • invalid-0

    Please excuse my typo in the last post. I meant 260 million Americans. I’m well aware the U.S. has 303,824,640 people (July 2008 estimate) in it!

    One additional comment/question … How does one measure cost per capita for health care when the government pays for it? Especially since the government gets its funds from the citizens of the country through taxes. There’s no doubt that if we had universal health care for everyone in this country, taxes would go up considerably, so, I ask again, how does that fit in your per capita figures? While it may be less for those who already pay no taxes, what about those who do?

    Cost isn’t everything either. You need to look at quality. Why do people from all over the world (that can afford it) still flock to the U.S. for medicine if the programs in other countries are superior? Do you really think the U.S. can maintain its current quality of medical care if the goverment runs it? Have you stood in any lines lately at goverment-run offices?

  • invalid-0

    Have you ever been presented with an argument that has, at its core, such an illogical foundation that it almost becomes harder to argue than a strong, sound argument?The “logic” you use for the justification of aborting twins and then trying to pin it on me is so absurd that it almost doesn’t deserve an answer, but there are a few points I’ll make.

    First, DNA is just one of many requirements for “personhood.” It is not the end all. The baby in the womb meets many other requrements for “personhood” as well, but I will not go into that here as it has already been discussed in other posts.

    Second, you obviously support abortion, and yet you’re trying to take the moral high ground by placing the blame for the hypothetical death via abortion of a twin or twins on me! Of course it is possible for two people, in the case of twins, to have identical DNA, but who, in their right mind, would concoct such a crazy scheme as to throw out the “copy?” Even if I had a sibling with the exact DNA, I’m still an individual human being loved by God and deserving of all the protections under law. Do you know any identical twins who have very opposite personalites? This is because they’re still individuals, so when it comes right down to it, they’re not EXACT copies, are they?

    You guys make this way too easy! Your arguments get more ridiculous as this conversation continues. I would hope that everyone who is following this blog would know better than to accuse me of justifying the aborting of twins. Just in case it isn’t clear, though, I WOULD NEVER JUSTIFY THE ABORTING OF TWINS!!!

    Regarding your comment about a woman always being pregnant? Must I comment about this? Do you really think I’m suggesting this, or does this comment just give us all more insight into your personal insecurities? I know many women who consider it a blessing to have a baby (in fact I don’t know one that doesn’t), but no man or woman would ever think a woman’s duty is to be pregnant every second.

    For the record, I think everyone agrees that an unfertilized egg is not yet a baby since both egg and sperm each have only have of the genetic requirement to make a baby. (Don’t we all learn this in life science in seventh grade?)

    What it comes down to is this. You will use any argument, no matter how ridiculous, to protect what you perceive to be your “right” to do what you want with your body. You ignore evidence and facts to the contrary that the baby in your body is NOT your body, so you don’t have to be tied down by the concerns or needs of someone else.

    It’s sad. The more you try to protect your womanhood, the more you lose it.

  • invalid-0

    God has made WOMEN responsible for bearing life.

    A fetus while inside a woman is dependent on the woman for its survival and will die without her. It needs to stay inside for long enough to mature into a fully independent human being. Before this, it is not one. It remains dependent on the decision made by the woman of whether or not to bear it to term.

    It is ridiculous to attach emotional terminology to bits of tissue which have formed PART of the BODIES of the women concerned regardless of which week the heart starts beating. They were not independent human beings.

    God gave women the right to bear life. With that comes the right to deny life.

  • http://www.emofree.com/eft-training/eft-training.html invalid-0

    Well I don’t know why abortion is so broad on topic did God tell us the killing is a mortal sin. We needed to fruitfully multiply be happy and be content. We are not mostly permanent here in the world that we are living. I know people doesn’t have such confidence in life this is were eft training comes along really help us to continue living.

  • http://www.softwiseonline.com invalid-0

    Great Post, thank you for all the infomation!