A Federal Employee Expresses Outrage on Stupak


This article appeared in the Fall 2009 issue of Ms. Magazine and is reprinted here with permission from Ms.

“Our medical experts have determined that your life was not in
danger and you could have carried the pregnancy to term. And, by the
way, you owe us $9,000.”

Her voice
breaking, D.J. Feldman, a Washington, D.C. federal employee, recently
spoke to the press about her struggles with her insurance company after
she aborted a much-desired pregnancy because of a fetal diagnosis of
anencephaly (the absence of a major portion of the brain, skull and
scalp). The insurance would only cover abortion in the case of rape,
incest or a threat to her life, so the fact that if Feldman had
continued the pregnancy, it would have been both physically and
emotionally grueling—resulting either in a fetal demise, a stillbirth,
or a live birth of a newborn who would quickly die—had no effect on the
insurance company’s decision.

The
primary culprit in this situation is not really Feldman’s insurance
carrier, however, but the U.S. Congress. For decades it has imposed
such unconscionable restrictions on abortion coverage for federal
employees, as well as on women in the military, Native Americans using
government provided health facilities and women on Medicaid in a
majority of states.

Feldman is speaking out
now because of her outrage that the notorious Stupak-Pitts amendment to
the House health reform measure would extend such federal bans on
abortion coverage to the millions of women who are enrolled in the
private insurance market. Under this amendment,
any insurance plan that wishes to be part of the new national
health-care exchange would be prohibited from offering abortion
coverage, although most insurance plans currently offer this coverage.

As Nancy Northrup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights,
which organized the press conference at which Feldman spoke, put it:
“The ban on abortion coverage represents an enormous and unprecedented
incursion into the terms of the private insurance market….Stupak-Pitts
would regulate abortion coverage for people working for private
employers or those who are self-employed.”

The press conference also featured a television advertisement that has just been produced by the Center
which effectively points to the unfairness—if not the absurdity—of such
a ban. The ad will run on MSNBC, other cable stations and media
websites.

As traumatic as D.J. Feldman’s
story is, she acknowledges that she is more fortunate than many other
women in her situation, since she and her husband were able to pay for
her abortion themselves. But she doesn’t want other women forced into a
similar situation, especially those without extra financial resources.
Feldman has not only spoken to the press but also visited various
Congressional offices to speak against Stupak-Pitts. “I realized I had
a moral obligation to speak out,” she said.

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To schedule an interview with Carole Joffe please contact Communications Director Rachel Perrone at rachel@rhrealitycheck.org.

  • progo35

    The insurance company and the US government is ABSOLUTELY RIGHT to barr coverage for late term abortion where there is no threat to the woman’s life. It is very tragic when a fetus develops without organs, but that still does not constitute a threat to the woman’s life or make that fetus less worthy to be carried to term. I would NEVER, EVER support an ammendment to help a woman end a pregnancy in the case of fetal anomaly. Not only does it violate my beliefs about abortion, but it is a form of prejudice. I feel like stories like these are being used to manipulate people into thinking that abortion because of fetal anomaly equates to abortion because of catastrophic health concerns facing the woman. It’s jsut not true, and the distinctions between life saving abortion and abortion done to save a woman from something that is emotionally grueling should be maintained. If getting an abortion is the way the woman wants to handle her situation, than she and her loved ones should have to pay for it or find another way to handle the situation, such as through post natal hospice care.
    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    It is very tragic when a fetus develops without organs, but that still does not constitute a threat to the woman’s life or make that fetus less worthy to be carried to term.

    Less worthy? What does this have to do with the WORTH of the fetus? What we are talking about here is having the woman spend another four or five MONTHS growing a pre-dead fetus larger (and more difficult to deliver). How considerate of you to acknowledge that continuing to carry a grossly deformed fetus is “emotionally grueling”. It’s too bad that you can’t also recognize that it is totally POINTLESS. Certainly you don’t seem to feel that the woman’s enormous physical contribution during those four or five months has any value and you don’t seem to feel she is has enough ‘worth’ to deserve any consideration whatsoever.

     

    There isn’t much need for post-natal hospice care in these cases – the majority of anencephalic fetuses result in spontaneous abortion or stillbirths, and it is rare for anencephalic fetuses to survive more than a few hours.

    How does anencephaly affect the pregnancy?
    The diagnosis of anencephaly may be suspected if the alpha fetoprotein level is elevated. The diagnosis is confirmed by a targeted ultrasound performed by a tertiary care facility qualified to make a definitive diagnosis of anencephaly. If other anomalies are noted, amniocentesis may be offered to evaluate the chromosomes. The diagnosis of anencephaly in the fetus poses a slightly increased medical risk to the mother. Because of this fact and the fact that this anomaly is uniformly fatal for the baby, the treatment options offered are termination of the pregnancy or palliative care at the time of birth. One of the risks for the mother is development of polyhydramnios or an increased volume of amniotic fluid. This can be uncomfortable to the point of interfering with breathing. Polyhydramnios may increase the risk for preterm labor. The labor and delivery process is sometimes complicated by a failure of the cervix to dilate and the fetal presentation may not be head down which makes for a more complicated vaginal delivery and contributes to the dysfunctional labor or the failure of the cervix to dilate. There is a slightly increased risk of postpartum hemorrhage and placental abruption (placenta pulling away from the uterine wall), which also carries a risk of hemorrhage. Each of these risks, while low, is slightly higher than is associated with a normal pregnancy.
    http://www.chw.org/display/PPF/DocID/34371/Nav/1/router.asp

    Women who choose to give birth to anencephalic babies usually undergo a C-section, increasing the likelihood of a live birth; however, in over 55% of these cases the child is stillborn (1, 2). Curiously enough, there have been documented cases of anencephaly in twin births: while one twin may be healthy, the other may suffer from anencephaly. In such cases, women may choose to undergo a partial abortion, which carries some risk to the healthy twin. Other women choose to complete their term and deliver both babies with few complications.

    The physical stress of carrying an anencephalic child is significant on the mother; besides experiencing great emotional distress, some women suffer polyhydramnios. Polyhydramnios is a condition in which an excessive amount of amniotic fluid leaks into the amniotic sac, causing a woman’s abdomen to exceedingly swell up. This is a somewhat painful condition, and can lead to the umbilical cord slipping in front of the baby, the placenta to prematurely separate from the wall of the uterus, and the fetus’ death.
    http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/node/54

  • colleen

    Time to cue at least one ‘pro-life’ woman going on about how the doctors who tried to get her to kill her baby were wrong and HER anencephalic child is now 5 and reading at a 5th grade level.

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

    Dr Warren Hern, MD

  • crowepps

    Sure, along with the enormous number of former miracle babies born alive at 20 weeks who somehow escaped the problems of retinopathy and retardation so that they actually can see and think and use a computer to participate in this forum — the internet is a wonderful thing, ALL of us can represent that we epitomize what ‘should’ be true no matter how unlikely that actually is in reality.

    Wood et al. report that the most common outcome of pregnancies that end between 20 and 25 weeks of gestation is stillbirth or death before admission to a neonatal intensive care unit (79 percent), the cheapest outcome, followed by death before discharge (12 percent) and survival to discharge (8 percent, with <1 percent dying after discharge but before 2 1/2 years of age). Among the survivors at 2 1/2 years of age, roughly half had some disability (about half of these had severe disability), and half had no disability. These findings will help inform parents about their baby’s chances for survival, normal function, and handicap and will make it possible for insurance companies and courts to compare the outcomes of this technology with other expensive procedures. Because of the substantial morbidity among these infants after discharge and their frequent need for specialized educational services as they grow older, (4) the rates should also be used by health care and education planners to estimate the need for services in populations with known rates of extreme prematurity.

    http://www.edwardhumes.com/articles/editorial_nejm.shtml

  • christie

    "the distinctions between life saving abortion and abortion done to save a woman from something that is emotionally grueling should be maintained."

    Using your own reasoning, why are there exceptions in the case of rape or incest? Could it be because society recognizes that carrying a pregnancy that is the result of rape or incest is an "emotionally grueling" thing to impose upon a woman?  Carrying a fetus with a death sentence is equally as emotionally grueling.

     

    Christie

    http://www.ourheartbreakingchoices.com

     

  • progo35

    Crowepps-
    Your post supports my point. The issue of whether or not carrying a fetus for another four or five months is “worth it” is a matter of subjective opinion. I think it is, you think it isn’t. But what we do agree on is that if a woman’s life is in jeopardy, her abortion should be covered. But, if it’s not in jeopardy, than I disagree with you when you argue that not paying for a late term abortion of a disabled fetus devalues the woman or treats her as if she has no moral worth at all. It simply reflects the consensus that abortions that are not necessary to save a woman’s life should not qualify for federal funding via my taxes or yours. And, if you care that much about making sure that women who have late term abortions for fetal anomaly get coverage, than set up a charity and use your own money.

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    The vast majority of taxpayers in this country absolutely support abortions in these cases, and I don’t see why the sentimentality or religiosity of a tiny minority should be given a veto over what MOST people don’t mind covering with their tax dollars. Anencephalic fetuses are NOT ‘disabled’ – they are PRE-DEAD. They have absolutely NO chance of ever being conscious at all. Confusing that with ‘disability’ is pretty insulting. I know a lot of ‘disabled’ people, including my late mother, my sister and my son-in-law, and they all have actual working brains which provide them with personalities and consciousness.

  • jimeo722

    This is yet another example of of how ideological extremists on both sides of the abortion issue cause such misery. Any reasonable person would acknowledge that this woman should have the right to abort this unfortunate fetus. Any reasonable person would be outraged at the the abortion of a healthy fetus in her ninth month by delivering her legs and lower abdomen, and then reaching into her "mother’s" vagina and sucking her brains out, because "mother" was able to get a doctor to sign off on the claim that giving birth would cause post traumatic stress disorder. But idealogues control this issue, because politicians fear idealogues. I don’t know how you idealogues live with yourselves. I really don’t.

  • kate-ranieri

    Progo35, your responses on this site are disturbing to me. To be so absolutely sure, to be so concretely black and white, frightens me. Nothing is life is certain, really. But it seems that you have an innate ability to draw black/white or good/bad boxes around life issues with little contextual information, little humility, and, certainly, with little regard for the human particularities of women’s lives. 

     

    Your perspective on women and fetuses is beyond my comprehension. How you can be judge and jury about reasons for abortion illustrates you inability to walk in another’s shoes. Your fastidious but mindless adherance to some moral notion that places primacy of the possibility over the primacy of the real is beyond bothersome. In other words, it seems to me that your worldview (or is it your religion?) ensures that the fetus is the priority while the woman is the fodder/servant/incubator for the machinations of your ideology.

     

    Lastly, you reference stories being used to manipulate. This country has a long history of propaganda and persuasion. Many of our early propagandists were instrumental in getting this country involved in WWI and both Iraq wars. The prolife movement is no different. They use outrageous storytelling to manipulate women.

     

    Bottom line, I suggest that you are a neophyte in this larger conversation. I look forward to watching you mature or burn out. 

  • jodi-jacobson

    An actual explicit instance of someone here who has advocated this, and/or an actual case, with documentation, where you know this to have happened.

    Any reasonable person would be outraged at the the abortion of a
    healthy fetus in her ninth month by delivering her legs and lower
    abdomen, and then reaching into her "mother’s" vagina and sucking her
    brains out, because "mother" was able to get a doctor to sign off on
    the claim that giving birth would cause post traumatic stress disorder.

    This is the ultimate in spreading misinformation and rumor regarding late abortions, of the variety where people contend that women who carry a child into their ninth month wake up one day and decide over coffee they no longer want to be pregnant.

     

    Until you prove you are a medical doctor who has served women in this capacity and know this to happen, this claim is not only insulting to the women who have had to endure late abortions for catastrophic and devastating reasons, it is insulting to all women and their partners and families who must go through this and to the professionals that serve them.

     

    Your contention is, I am sorry to say, ideology at its worst.

     

  • julie-watkins

    was that since newborn babies get thrown away in dumpsters, "of course" there are women who will kill a healthy baby just before birth — there are women who will kill a healthy baby just after birth. QED. He was one of those "doesn’t trust anyone" people — at least not women with unwanted pregnancies … or doctors who trust women.

    That doesn’t prove that even if a pregnant woman wanted to kill her fetus that far along that a doctor would do it. Maybe a back-alley — and the occasional scandals that happen (and Life Site would like readers to think they happen All The Time; and Mr. "what about dumpster babies?" would like me to think that happens All The Time) the instances are very rare. And shouldn’t be acting as if all doctors who provide abortions are like the scandals.

    Even when there were abortion wards pre-Roe, the illegal abortions were attempted much earlier.

    Even if there are some occassional morally questionable abortions, that’s not a reason for all the TRAP laws (and now Stupak-Pitts) limiting access. What about the 98%, 99%+++ women & girls who are unfairly being burdened? It’s more a reason for medical standards (not laws) & reintergrating full reproductive services into general OB-Gyn & general hospitals.

  • catseye71352

    The only way the likes of Progo35 will ever get it about late-term nonviable pregnancies is if she herself suffers one. Even then, after she terminates the pregnancy, she will be right back out in front of the clinic with her "aborted-fetus" signs and deceptive literature. Catseye  ( (|) )

  • catseye71352

    There has NEVER been a documented case of a healthy pregnancy being terminated after the 2nd trimester. (Lies from anti-abortion sites DO NOT COUNT!) I don’t know how you people live with yourselves after inspiring terrorists within your organizations to murder living, breathing, BORN clinic staff and doctors.

     

    Catseye  ( (|) )

  • catseye71352

    A pregnancy that threatens the functioning of a major organ system in the WOMAN is NOT a healthy pregnancy. Do you think a woman should be forced to carry a pregnancy that would reduce her heart function by 90% just because it _might_ not kill her outright? It would seem that you do.

     

    Catseye  ( (|) )

  • progo35

    Crowepps-

    Your outrage over my assertion that a fetus with anancephaly is disabled seems disingenous and ignorant within the context of disability rights. I have a learning disability, but I don’t run around feeling offended because the universal symbol of someone in a wheelchair is used to denote disabled parking spaces, and I don’t try to argue that someone with Down Syndrome isn’t disabled because I have 26 chromosomes and he or she has twenty seven. To argue that your disabled family members have fully functioning brains and that therefore, a fetus missing part of it’s brain is not disabled ignores legal and social definitions of disability, and strikes me as a strawman attempt to make what I said seem insulting to disabled people in general when it is in keeping with the disability right’s movement’s inclusion of anyone whose condition impedes a major life function. 

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    Catseye-while you’re demanding that I get a clue about the abortion issue, get one of your own-I have never stood outside an abortion clinic with aborted fetus signs or even gone near one in my life.  

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    A fetus with anencephaly is dead, for all intents and purposes, and it disgusts me that you think my sister should have carried a doomed pregnancy to term, at the expense of her body, her health, emotional well being, and yes… her family life, just to satisfy some sick belief in "godly grace."

     

    No slack this time, progo…

     

     

  • progo35

    Ahunt- First of all, I made no mention of God or grace in my discussion of this issue, so you’re the one bringing those issues into the discussion, not me. Secondly,there is no such thing as "dead for all intents and purposes," at least from a scientific standpoint. Either someone/thing is dead, or he/she/it isn’t. You can have the opinion about when death occurs, but that’s an opinion, not a scientific fact. Moreover, this thread is about funding for abortion because of fetal anomaly-in the case of the woman it concerns-anancephaly. For the purposes of this thread, I am not saying anything about what your sister should have done, I am saying that I am not willing to help pay for abortion procedures for women who find themselves in your sister’s position. I would be willing to help pay for an abortion that the woman needs to save her own life, but not otherwise. For that matter, I find it disgusting that you support aborting fetuses that are almost full term because of anancephaly or another kind of disorder. So, we’re both disgusted together.

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    Pardon me if I wish the nightmare and tragedy of anencephaly on you and yours, Progo…just to see how you and yours would  bring the doomed pregnancy to term, and wax eloquent about the "life-affirming" experience of minutes or hours spent with impending death, assuming that death did not occur months earlier.

     

    And what is this "almost full term"? Anencephaly is usually identified  by 20 weeks…

     

    Disgust? Your contempt for women and their families and their actual lives is what is disgusting. You would do it, if you could, wouldn’t you? You would legally mandate that women facing doomed pregnancies carry to term? Yes? No? Maybe?

  • progo35

    See, that’s what I love about some of  the "pro choice" people on this website. You claim to be compassionate and then wish tragedy and death on those with whom you disagree. If that did happen to me, I’m sure you’d be happy, ahunt, which is disgusting. Once again, THIS THREAD HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE LEGALITY OF ABORTION, IT HAS TO DO WITH WHO IS FUNDING IT, so stop distorting the issue. This isn’t about whether I would legally mandate that a woman carry a fetus with anancephaly to term, it is about whether I would be okay with my tax dolars being used to fund such a procedure. Legal or not, I don’t want my tax dollars involved. That places no requirements upon what a woman does with her own money or her family’s money. 

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    There is a ton of crap I do not want my tax dollars paying for, Progo…but when it comes to the well being of poor women who are in the position of my sister…the freakin’ one tenth of one penny of our personal tax obligation that would help them is good money well spent.

     

    But while we’re on the subject, Progo…would you, if you could…legally prevent women like my sister from ending the pregnancy?

     

    Curious minds want to know.

  • progo35

    Ahunt-but this is what the issue with Stupak Pitts is. SP is supposed to maintain the status quo on no federal funding for abortion by not providing abortion coverage in the public option and not providing subsidies for plans to cover abortion. That is consistent with the Hyde ammendment. I’m willing to bet money that you want Hyde overturned. I do not. You really wanted a public option that would fund elective abortion, I did not. So, I don’t buy that the issue here is whether or not I would legally compell women to carry a anancephalic fetus to term.  Moreover, you know enough about my feelings about late term abortion and handicap to guess about how I feel about the legality of late term abortion that is not done to save a woman’s life. 

     

    Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    SP goes far beyond the mandate of the Hyde Amendment, and you know it.

     

    SP prevents women from paying for their own reproductive health coverage with their own money.

     

    Moreover, you know enough about my feelings about late term abortion
    and handicap to guess about how I feel about the legality of late term
    abortion that is not done to save a woman’s life.  

     

    Well heck, progo…come right out and say it…women carrying an anencephalitic fetus should be forced by law to carry the pregnancy to term…or to the stillbirth…regardless of the maternal health risks…

     

    Just say it. You can do it, progo.

     

     

     

     

  • progo35

    I won’t say something that’s not true. You are conflating anancephaly with a pregnancy that threatens a woman’s health.  

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    For that matter, why don’t YOU come right out and say, "I think Hyde should be overturned. I really want federal funding for elective abortions." 

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    All pregnancies threaten a woman’s health, progo, or didn’t you know that?

  • ahunt

    A dead fetus in utero is in fact a life threatening condition.

  • jayn

    Progo, two things:

     

    One, legality and access are two different things.  Hyde, and now Stupak, work to reduce access, and further victimizes those who are already victims.

     

    Secondly, there have been several different groups analysing Stupak (and not just pro-choice ones) who have said that the likely outcome down the road will be NO abortion coverage AT ALL, because it won’t be worth it for the insurance companies to provide it, regardless of how it’s paid for.

     

    These two things together means that your support of Stupak would likely result in many women being forced to carry to term, because they are unable to afford an abortion, or attempt to induce a miscarriage themselves.  You’re pretty much splitting hairs–the end result is pretty much the same, regardless of if you’re saying "it should be illegal" or "I don’t want to pay for it".

     

     

    You also seem to take issues relating to disability (and I disagree that anacephaly is a ‘disability’, in the sense that it is a far worse condition) way too personally–somewhat understandably, but none of this is about you.  Any woman considering an abortion –whether for health reasons or any other–is already in a shitty situation.  Laws like Stupak only make those situations worse.

  • progo35

    Honestly, ahunt, the way you just twisted facts to suit your agenda disgusts me. An anancephalic fetus that has not expired in utero is NOT "a dead fetus in utero." Until the fetus has actually expired, it is still alive. A healthy pregnancy does not present a grave threat to an individual woman’s life, a distinction which I’m sure you understand, unless you plan to argue that a woman should, say, be able to get an elective abortion in her nineth month because the healthy pregnancy "threatens her health." 

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    You cannot be suggesting that anencephaly constitutes a healthy pregnancy.

  • crowepps

    Oh, geez, if we’re going to include stuff like learning disabilities there’s a whole bunch more disabled people in my family. My mother and sister and son-in-law all have serious mobility disabilities, the kind that require operations and canes and wheelchairs or allow the use of only one hand. If we’re going to include learning disabilities and similar neurological problems then I have a daughter, a niece and 6 nephews that probably should be counted. Heck, I probably qualify myself – since I had a stroke a while back I’ve had a real problem with agnosia that really interfers with doing my job. I would argue, though, that in my opinion all of these things, even the ones that are pretty severely handicapping, are both qualitatively and quantitatively pretty different than having most of the brain missing and being unable to attain consciousness!

     

    One of the ‘requirements’ for humanity, and life, is to have a cerebral cortex. A fetus with no cerebral cortex does not have a "condition that impedes a major life function"; they have a condition incompatible with life itself. Your assertion that four or five months of using her own substance to maintain and grow and carry away the waste of such a pre-dead fetus doesn’t affect her health ignores the fact that just being pregnant affects her health adversely and anenchephaly adds another layer of possible complications which you would insist aren’t your problem and don’t want your money used to prevent.

     

    Fine, dedicate your tax money to grants funding performance art or sending crop price support payments or advertising McDonald’s in France or The War On Drugs. I hereby officially give permission for the federal government to use my tax money to help women in these horrible situations.

  • ahunt

    I hereby officially give permission for the federal government to use my tax money to help women in these horrible situations.

     

    Ya think? This is what just sends me into emotional overdrive: my sister had coverage, a loving husband, and the support of extended family.  Imagine what the broke, uninsured, abandoned, isolated woman thinks…upon hearing a diagnosis of anencephaly.

     

    .

  • progo35

    Once again, there is no such diagnosis as "pre dead." That is something that you, crowepps, are using to describe a fetus with anancephaly. I am stating the irrefutable scientific fact that a fetus that is animated inside the womb is still alive in the womb and does not constitute a "dead fetus."

     

    Moreover, this little tidbit is charming "Oh, geez, if we’re going to include stuff like learning disabilities there’s a whole bunch more disabled people in my family." Swell. Obviously you have no idea what it’s like to live with a serious learning disorder, otherwise you wouldn’t be so ignorant as to not include it in your definition of disability. In fact, I’m HAPPY that you don’t understand that, because if you did, than people like you would start campaigning for prenatal tests to diagnose LDs in the womb.

     

    Finally, you are willing to give money to help women have abortions in these situations. If you feel so strongly about that, set up a charity with ahunt and use your OWN MONEY to help pay for these procedures. People like me will use our money to help women who are too poor to get the prenatal care they need and women who need financial support to continue their pregnancies after diagnosis of a fetal anomaly. 

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    No, I’m not, but you may as well have, since when I pointed out that you are conflating an anancephalic fetus with a pregnancy that threatens a woman’s health, you replied by saying that all pregnancies threaten a woman’s health. By that logic, we should abandon the health requirement entirely and simply allow abortions up until birth because all pregnancies threaten womens’ health.  

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    Well Gosh, progo…I’m certain uninsured women carrying anencephalitic fetuses are ever so grateful that you are willing to use your own money to help them do what you think they should do, and not what is in the ACTUAL best interests of their own physical, emotional, familial and social well-being.

     

  • ahunt

    The distinction being that the anencephalitic fetus is known for dying in utero….

  • progo35

    I’m talking about women who WANT to continue their pregnancies and who thus would accept an offer of financial help after, say, their insurance company demands that they have a late term abortion or suffer the loss of prenatal coverage.  

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    WHAT…THE…HELL?

  • progo35

    LOOK…IT…UP!

     

     

  • mechashiva

    There are many reasons why there are higher instances of pregnancy-related complications when abortion becomes less accessible. I won’t belabor that point, because there is no arguing it.

     

    What I suggest is this:

    It is bad when the biggest problem related to abortion is one of public health. It is better to enact policies such that the primary concern can stay one of benign morality rather than safety of the population.

     

    Taxes are used to benefit the population on a whole. Personal outrage over abortion is not important. As a practical matter, it is better for the nation to keep abortion accessible (physically and financially). Abortion should be federally funded for that reason.

  • crowepps

    Well, of course there is no diagnosis of pre-dead, just as there is no diagnosis of pre-born. The medical term is “fatal birth defect” or “congenital abnormality incompatible with life”. Your insistence that removing the fetus from the mother kills it ignores the fact that this is just as true at 40 weeks as it is at 20 weeks. As I’m sure you’re aware, since you know so much about pregnancy, the fetus gives the signal for labor to begin. One of the problems with anencephalic fetuses is that apparently their defect prevents them from sending that signal and so labor does NOT start. Since inducing labor artificially through medication and having them be born leads to their death, should instead their development just continue until the woman’s uterus finally just ruptures? After all, until that point her life isn’t actually precipiently at risk.

  • crowepps

    Moreover, this little tidbit is charming “Oh, geez, if we’re going to include stuff like learning disabilities there’s a whole bunch more disabled people in my family.” Swell. Obviously you have no idea what it’s like to live with a serious learning disorder, otherwise you wouldn’t be so ignorant as to not include it in your definition of disability.

    Oh, geez, it’s really a bad idea to make this kind of assumption about another poster. My extended family is special education central. My daughter has ADD, dyslexia, dysgraphia AND dyscalculia. We spent many hours at the pediatric neurologist and the behavioral therapist, at IEP meetings and talking with teachers. We spent tons of time and money researching and buying assistive technologies like Franklin Reader, microrecorders and talking calculators, and coordinating textbooks with Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic. I certainly do know exactly what it’s like, but perhaps the problem is that I was apparently taught a radically different idea of what happens after the diagnosis of disability.

     

    In my family, considering that my mother was disabled by polio in 1940 and my sister was born disabled before I arrived, I was taught from before I remember that disability was something which one had the responsibility to overcome and that exactly the same things were expected of the disabled person as of anyone else. Both my mother and my sister worked around their handicaps, even ignored their handcaps. They kept their homes, held down jobs, had and raised their kids, and succeeded in having lives pretty much like those of everyone else.

     

    My daughter had to work very, very hard to become educated, and deserves a lot of credit for it. Sure, I gave her lots of help, but it was by her determination that she learned the information she was expected to know, got very good grades, graduated and went on to college. Our family tradition that handicaps are a barrier to work around allowed her to reach her potential. She certainly never got the idea that being learning disabled defined her as being special or was an excuse to give up, but instead wasn’t going to let them get in her way.

     

    My mother would have been outraged at the idea that anyone should feel sorry for her or take care of her or give her special consideration, (poor thing) just because she happened to have atrophy of several major muscle groups and found it hard to stand or walk or use her arms. Unlike many of the people she met during her year in the hospital, she hadn’t died, she wasn’t in an iron lung, and she wasn’t in a wheelchair. She always said she was really lucky to have recovered, dismissed the fact that she had limited mobility, cherished the muscles she had that still worked, and was very proud of the fact that she didn’t let her disabilities get in her way or prevent her from doing what she wanted to do.

     

    Before you make snotty remarks about how somebody doesn’t really know what they’re talking about or is ignorant it would be a really, really good idea to ask them a few questions about the basis of their information first.

  • progo35

    You’re still making the assumcption that disabilities are something bad and that certain disabilities are significant only in terms of how they relate to other disabilities. Disability rights ideology espouses the view that disability is something to be embraced, like one’s culture or sexual identity. Thus, it doesn’t need to be "overcome," as you say, rather, it is the social barriers in front of disabled people that must be overcome. In that context, "overcome your disability" is like saying "overcome your race," and is very insulting. It would be inappropriate for me to run around thinking, "Oh, thank GOD I’m not in a wheelchair!" because being in a wheelchair isn’t something to be ashamed of and/or desired. It just is. Being cognizant of that fact empowers people with disabilities to do just what you say you want us to do: be who we want to be. So, you ought to be educated enough to understand that learning disorders are disabilities just like anything else, and you shouldn’t have excluded them from your initial definitions of disability. Doing so is like saying "you’re not really disabled," to someone who is, just like it would be inappropriate for someone to say, "you’re not really Latina" to somoene who is half African American and half Cuban.

     

    Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    Well, actually, I have to say that I find this post pretty judgmental and condescending. You’re still making the assumption that you know what I assume. Disabilities "substantially limit one or more of the major life activities" and I’ve got to tell you, most people do consider limits bad. I thought my post was very clear that I was relating my mother’s opinions right from the horse’s mouth, so to speak, and for you to conclude that her happiness at not being in a wheelchair means that she thought people in wheelchairs should be ashamed of that fact is just bizarre. This isn’t about whether people in wheelchairs are more or less worthy than other people – it’s about the fact that people would rather have their bodies work correctly and that wheelchairs are a darn inconvenient way to have to get around.

     

    There is an echo in your accusation of the ‘traditional’ idea that people who are ill or disabled or poor (or have unwanted pregnancies) must have done something wrong and deserve what happened to them, but that certainly isn’t an accurate reflection of my thinking. You might want to check your own underlying assumptions about bad things happening indicating bad people.

     

    The ideology that "disability ought to be embraced" and allowed to define a person doesn’t square with my personal experience of people with disabilities at all. Most of them strenuously resist being defined by their disabilities, prefer to be "Bob in Accounting" or "Pat With the Sense of Humor" rather than "Bob With MS" or "Pat the Paraplegic" and they absolutely LOATHE people who want to focus on the disability first and themselves as persons second.

     

    The idea that all disabilities should be considered equal strikes me as pretty silly. A person missing their little toe and a paraplegic are not equally disabled, a person with 20/40 vision and a blind person are not equally disabled, and they certainly face different barriers and need different levels of intervention and support. To me what is insulting to saying that it’s discriminatory to rank disabilities on an impairment scale because that sounds to me very much like people with minor disabilities feel they have an entitlement to a share of social and governmental support that in my opinion ought to be going to those who actually need more help.

     

    Your statement that you are trying to "be who we want to be" in the context of this board is ironic, since you are apparently claiming for yourself consideration from society and a level of support that you absolutely deny to pregnant women. If all disabilities are equal, then a woman who’s pregnant certainly has "a physical…impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of such individual" and she should qualify as well. Denying her necessary medical attention in cases where her health is at risk is discriminating against her because of her disability. If you’re going to restrict social support for therapeutic abortions only to women whose life is at stake and those whose health or sanity is at risk have to rely on private charity, then to be consistent social support for disability should be restricted only to those whose life is immediately at risk and the rest will have to survive on whatever private charity can raise.

  • progo35

    "There is an echo in your accusation of the ‘traditional’ idea that
    people who are ill or disabled or poor (or have unwanted pregnancies)
    must have done something wrong and deserve what happened to them, but
    that certainly isn’t an accurate reflection of my thinking. You might
    want to check
    your own underlying assumptions about bad things happening indicating bad people. "

     

    LOL. That’s it. I definitely think that I did something WRONG and that’s why I learn the way that I do. I definitely think that GOD must HATE my guts, and that is why HE made me the way that He did. Your statement, once again, indicates that you, yourself, see disability as something that is bad, so that the only way it can be embraced is if one is harboring some self-deprecating idea that the disability is a punishment.

     

    "If all disabilities are equal, then a woman who’s pregnant certainly
    has "a physical…impairment that substantially limits one or more of
    the major life activities of such individual" and she should qualify as
    well. Denying her necessary medical attention in cases where her health
    is at risk is discriminating against her because of her disability. If
    you’re going to restrict social support for therapeutic abortions only
    to women whose life is at stake and those whose health or sanity is at
    risk have to rely on private charity, then to be consistent social
    support for
    disability should be restricted only to those whose
    life is immediately at risk and the rest will have to survive on
    whatever private charity can raise."

     

    Disability entails pregnancy when it substantially limits a life activity, but accommodation for it does not entail "curing" that disability via abortion. As long as proper medical care is recieved, carrying an anancephalic fetus does not substantially limit life activities any more than carrying a normal fetus does. You can’t use disability as a train unto which you can jump whenever your ideology suits you. What you just said about people with disabilities relying on private donations not only ignores the fact that many disabled people get accommodations that cost nothing, it also reaks of this attitude: "Unless you’re dying, we don’t want to hear from you. In fact, if you are dying, please hurry up and do it, because we don’t want to have to actually care for you or do anything HARD like that."

     

    "The idea that all disabilities should be considered equal strikes me as
    pretty silly. A person missing their little toe and a paraplegic are
    not equally disabled, a person with 20/40 vision and a blind person are
    not equally disabled, and they certainly face different barriers and
    need different levels of intervention and support."

    Please explain how missing one’s little toe or having 20/40 vision, other than needing glasses or avoiding sandles "substantially limits a major life activity."

     

    "To me what is
    insulting to saying that it’s discriminatory to rank disabilities on an
    impairment scale because that sounds to me very much like people with
    minor disabilities feel they have an
    entitlement to a share of social and governmental support that in my opinion ought to be going to those who actually need more help."

     

    Crowepps, not everyone who is disabled NEEDS the kind of social and government support you are talking about. He or she might just need the shield of the Americans with Disabilities Act in order to qualify for completely FREE accommodations at school that have absolutely no financial impact on the school, the school district, or the government.

     

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    People whose visual acuity is 20/40 or worse aren’t allowed to drive.  People who are missing their little toe have problems keeping their balance.  People who have learning disabilities have a range of difficulties from minor to severe with different types of academic work.

  • ahunt

    You claim to be compassionate and then wish tragedy and death on those with whom you disagree.

     

    Well, at least we agree that anencephaly IS tragedy and DEATH. My compassion, unlike yours, lies with the people actually experienceing the tragedy and death. Where DOES your compassion lie?

    95+% of anencephalitic pregnancies are terminated. 55+% of non-terminations are stillborn. The majority of those carried to term are delivered via c-section.

     

    Yes…I do wish you had to walk the long mile in the shoes of those actually dealing with anencephaly. Because just as "the only moral abortion is my abortion"…when anencephaly is YOUR problem…the rules abruptly change.

     

    Unless of course…you believe that anencephaly only happens to pro-choice people.

  • ahunt

    The profound distinction being that anencephaly is a death sentence, and such being the case, continuing to to threaten a woman’s heath against her will is pointless, misogynistic, and utterly cruel.

  • crowepps

    LOL. That’s it. I definitely think that I did something WRONG and that’s why I learn the way that I do. I definitely think that GOD must HATE my guts, and that is why HE made me the way that He did. Your statement, once again, indicates that you, yourself, see disability as something that is bad, so that the only way it can be embraced is if one is harboring some self-deprecating idea that the disability is a punishment.

    Good Golly, you sure have some bizarre ideas. Disability IS, it has very little connection to the character of the person who has it, and the effects of it are indeed negative – that’s why the word DISABILITY is used.

    “Disability – inability to function normally, physically or mentally; incapacity”
    medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/disability

    That doesn’t have anything whatsoever to do with disability being a punishment or God hating the person nor does it indicate that the person is ‘bad’. You’re the one reading all that into it. Birth defects, developmental disabilities, and disabilities as a consequence of accident or disease are distributed pretty randomly in the population, and if people live long enough to get really old, EVERYONE ends up ‘disabled’.

     

    You seem to be asserting that it doesn’t matter a bit that the disability puts the person in a situation where their life is substantially limited in an important area. I seems to me that it is a very bad thing to have one’s life substantially limited. If disabilities don’t have a negative effect on people’s lives then why bother trying to prevent accidents or spend money doing research to try to cure disabilities?

  • crowepps

    Crowepps, not everyone who is disabled NEEDS the kind of social and government support you are talking about. He or she might just need the shield of the Americans with Disabilities Act in order to qualify for completely FREE accommodations at school that have absolutely no financial impact on the school, the school district, or the government.

    Special Education costs have a huge financial impact on schools (which ARE a subdivision of the government). They would have a much greater impact if they were fully funded. They fall under IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), not ADA.

    My daughter’s school ‘hadn’t heard about’ the accomodations that I discovered would help her, refused to pay for them, and was incredibly passive-aggressive about giving me sufficient lead time for things like ordering textbooks from Recorded Books for the Blind and Dyslexic or allowing her to use various technologies even though her father and I financed them in full. Some of the teachers even made incredibly stupid statements like “I don’t believe in dyslexia. There isn’t much you can tell me about Special Ed that I don’t already know.

    First, special programs are universally more expensive than their general education counterparts. While special program expenditure levels vary widely, a consensus estimate that they cost roughly 2.3 times that of a general program is emerging. Second, special education expenditures now represent a significant and growing proportion of most every school district’s total budget. Finally, it is generally evident that aggregate special education costs are rising at a rate faster not only of that of inflation, but at a pace that exceeds even the already accelerated rate of general education.
    http://www.wildwood.edu/institute/knowledge/evaluating.html

    About 90,000 special education students in the United States attend private schools at a cost to taxpayers of about $5.3 billion
    http://www.cwunbound.org/2009/06/the-cost-of-delaying-a-special-education.html

  • crowepps

    “Unless you’re dying, we don’t want to hear from you.

    Isn’t that EXACTLY what you’ve been saying to women whose pregnancies have disastrous complications? Sounds pretty heartless applied to the disabled, doesn’t it? Sounds pretty heartless applied to those women too, in my opinion.

  • crowepps

    It’s even MORE insulting when it’s granted that she can do what she wants on her own as long as it doesn’t take any money out of your pocket.  Making it crystal clear that the point isn’t the fetus but instead the moola.

  • ahunt

    Diggin’ the claws, Crowepps, but I think progo is serious. She would, if she could, force women carrying anencephalitic pregnancies to go to term, undergo cesarian more likely than not, and then have them just…deal with it.

     

    For progo, the filthy lucre is not a consideration,

     

     

  • progo35

     

    LOL. That’s it. I definitely think that I did something
    WRONG and that’s why I learn the way that I do. I definitely think that
    GOD must HATE my guts, and that is why HE made me the way that He did.
    Your statement, once again, indicates that you, yourself, see
    disability as something that is bad, so that the only way it can be
    embraced is if one is harboring some self-deprecating idea that the
    disability is a punishment.

    Good Golly, you sure have some bizarre ideas. Disability IS, it has
    very little connection to the character of the person who has it, and
    the effects of it are indeed negative – that’s why the word DISABILITY
    is used.

    "Disability – inability to function normally, physically or mentally; incapacity"
    medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/disability

    That doesn’t have anything whatsoever to do with disability being a
    punishment or God hating the person nor does it indicate that the
    person is ‘bad’.

     

    Anyone who can read can tell that what I said about God and punishment and disability was said SARCASTICLY! Moreover, you know I was being sarcastic and are twisting my words to suit your own argument. You are the one who is acting as if disability is a punishment from God, or something. You think that in order to embrace one’s identity as a disabled person, one has to believe that he or she is being punished from some sort of sin. That is ridiculous and totally antithetical to the disability rights movement.

     

    Actually, I think that there is too much money spent on bogus crap with promises that the blind will see and the lame will walk. For instance, embryonic stem cell research has not yield a SINGLE CURE OR TREATMENT for any disability, yet our country continues to DUMP millions of dollars into it every single year. It would be nice if some of that moeny was spent actually IMPROVING the lives of those with disabilities instead of trying to make such people go away by "curing" them while they languish in physical, psychological and/or spiritual pain because of how society treats them in their current state.  

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    Please explain how accommodations for disabled people take a life, potential or otherwise, Crowepps. That’s the difference.  

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    Crowepps-you’re stating all this stuff about special education and IDEA as if I don’t already know about it. I went through my entire public school career in special education and now I volunteer as a special education advocate for kids in foster care. I KNOW about IDEA and about the stupid crap that schools pull in order to bilk students out of their accommodations. I’m still dealing with that NOW, in grad school, even though the accommodations I require are FREE. My point is that a lot of learning disabilities can be accommodated without cost to the school system. For instance, one of my accommodations in school was that I was allowed to sit in the first seat in the first row of every classroom, regardless of whether the teacher had organized seating by last name or some other method, so that I wouldn’t get confused about which seat was mine. You know how much that cost the school system? Zilch. Zero. Nada.

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    Sure, just as soon as you explain how removing a fetus with fatal deformities at 40 weeks instead of 20 weeks can be construed as saving a life.

  • progo35

    Okay: an anancephalic baby might die upon birth, or it might not. Removing a living fetus from the womb at 20 weeks causes it’s death. Removing it at forty has to be done to preserve the woman’s health-she certainly can’t continue carrying the fetus inside her, and, secondly, a fetus is ready to be born at 40 weeks, and that fetus/baby dying in the birth process or shortly thereafter happens naturally. The fact that it’s a being with it’s own organ systems, etc, means that in my opinion, the woman does not have the right to determine when that fetus/baby dies. The issue isn’t  about SAVING a life, it’s about NOT TAKING a life. Getting back to the funding issue, which is the crux of this article-if someone feels that an abortion is the best course of action and pays for it with their own money, than I have no problem with that from a financial standpoint. I just don’t want to be involved.

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    Moreover, you know I was being sarcastic and are twisting my words to suit your own argument.

    I would never presume to assert that I could read your mind or be arrogant enough to leap to the conclusion that you didn’t mean exactly what you said.  Most people who are being sarcastic in posts, well aware of the problem of such posts being misinterpreted, use little parens and put something like (sarcasm on) and (sarcasm off).   Usually these ironical posts are pretty clear, but I personally have a pretty difficult time identifying yours since some of the statements in your posts that seemed to me to be outrageous irony turned out to be serious statements of your position.

    You are the one who is acting as if disability is a punishment from God, or something. You think that in order to embrace one’s identity as a disabled person, one has to believe that he or she is being punished from some sort of sin.

    This statement is an excellent example of what I meant by mind reading and conclusion leaping.  Not only did you ignore my clear statements in my post – you actually reversed them!  Since I don’t think God punishes people for ‘sin’ by disabling them, or that people can ‘sin’ before they’re born, it’s pretty silly.  I will admit that I think the whole idea of "embracing one’s identity as a disabled person" is hogwash.  The disabled people that I know do not consider themselves ‘identified by their disability’.

    For instance, embryonic stem cell research has not yield a SINGLE CURE OR TREATMENT for any disability, yet our country continues to DUMP millions of dollars into it every single year.

    "Our country"?  "Every single year"?  Are you talking about the federal government?  You must not be aware that President Bush stopped all federal grants for stem cell research and that only recently has the new administration reauthorized them.  If you’re talking about privately funded research, certainly the upcoming human trials on Stargardt disease are promising:

    http://www.dbtechno.com/health/2009/11/20/stem-cell-therapy-may-reduce-vision-loss-in-patients-with-stargardt-disease/

    And the animal tests on spinal cord injuries seem promising:

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091109121345.htm

    although the tests in humans haven’t quite started:

    http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/587411

    Strange, isn’t it, that even when a line of research is protested and restricted and shunned it STILL can produce results through private funding.  I believe a large percentage of the funds for researching spinal cord injuries came through the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation.

    It would be nice if some of that moeny was spent actually IMPROVING the lives of those with disabilities instead of trying to make such people go away by "curing" them while they languish in physical, psychological and/or spiritual pain because of how society treats them in their current state.  

    Personally I think the money is well spent both when it’s spent curing people and when it’s spent on support of disabled people.  I am a little confused about why you think making people healthy again is "trying to make such people go away".  Their value as humans does not come from their disability and after they are cured they still exist – they just are now able to join the mainstream of life on an equal basis with no handicap.  If they can "take up their bed and walk" that seems to me like both a good thing and what they personally would prefer.

     

    How society treats the disabled is a whole ‘nother ballgame and has a lot more to do with primate xenophobia than it does anything else.  Check out this study for Special Olympics:

    http://info.specialolympics.org/Special+Olympics+Public+Website/English/Initiatives/Research/Attitude_Research/Multinational+Study.htm

  • progo35

    Now it’s your turn to explain how accommodations for the handicapped take a life, potential or otherwise, Crowepps.

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    Generally speaking, though, in a world of finite resources where people scream bloody murder if there’s even a hint that their taxes might be raised, every dollar that is spent by the government on ‘accomodating’ the disabled diverts funds from the general pool so that it isn’t available for other uses – such as providing social services or health care for children or funding foster homes or even funding support, prenatal and obstetric care for women who are getting abortions because they are poor.  Every trained social worker doing a job as a case manager for the disabled instead of as a child protection worker saving children from their abusive parents costs lives.  Every personal caregiver doing a job supporting a disabled person in the home instead of providing foster care costs lives.  Every dollar put into disability accomodations instead of funding medical care for pregnant women costs lives.

     

    To forestall a leap off the conclusion cliff and a response about how horrible I am to advocate that the disabled be ignored, I want to make it clear that I am NOT saying the disabled shouldn’t be given support and necessary accomodations.  I am reminding you that advocates should always remember that the amount of social support/money is zero-sum – money directed to meet one goal comes at the expense of other goals.

  • crowepps

    Okay: an anancephalic baby might die upon birth, or it might not.

    They ALL die before, during or very shortly after birth. They don’t have a BRAIN.

    Removing a living fetus from the womb at 20 weeks causes it’s death.

    To me it’s a lot more like turning off the respirator when the brain wave is flat.

    Removing it at forty has to be done to preserve the woman’s health-she certainly can’t continue carrying the fetus inside her

    Why not? You’ve already made her do it for 20 totally unnecessary weeks. Why allow her to “cause its death” now?

    and, secondly, a fetus is ready to be born at 40 weeks

    An anencephalic fetus isn’t “ready to be born” and often doesn’t signal the start of labor. It seems to me it’s just as ‘unnatural’ to induce labor at 40 weeks as it is at 20.

    and that fetus/baby dying in the birth process or shortly thereafter happens naturally.

    It happens just as ‘naturally’ if labor is induced at 20 weeks. Or is the unnatural part the fact that the woman and her doctor and her husband have made a decision to end the pregnancy? (sarcasm on) I can see your point there. We can’t be letting people just take it upon themselves to start making DECISIONS all over the place based on actual science and common sense. Who knows where that would lead? Next thing you know, people will start advocating that that they be allowed to actually LEARN stuff and they might come up with NEW IDEAS. We all know how dangerous THAT kind of behavior is! (sarcasm off)

  • progo35

    Frankly, ahunt, I find you wishing anancephaly on someone else’s child disgusting. I’d say that that kind of thinking is sick, but that would be insulting to sick people. Nobody knows what would happen if their circumstances changed, but I am 99 percent sure that unless I was totally out of my mind, I would NOT have an abortion under those circumstances. The reason that I am not 100 percent sure is that I don’t have a crystal ball and therefore can’t predict what I would do with absolute certainty. For instance, I am adamently against assisted suicide, but I can’t completely dismiss the very slim possibility that I might kill myself if I had a bad enough depressive episode. I don’t believe in abruptly changing the rules just because you or someone you care about is in a certain situation, at leasdt in terms of one’s moral convictions. If I lept off a bridge tomorrow, that wouldn’t make my former stance against suicide wrong and the act of jumping off the bridge right. I believe that experiencing difficult situations oneself can deepen empathy for why people make the choices that they do, but it doesn’t change the fundamental nature of certain acts as right or wrong.

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    Crowepps:

    "Every trained social worker doing a job as a case manager for the
    disabled instead of as a child protection worker saving children from
    their abusive parents costs lives. Every personal caregiver doing a
    job supporting a disabled person in the home instead of providing
    foster care costs lives. Every dollar put into disability
    accomodations instead of funding medical care for pregnant women costs
    lives."

     

    Okay, let’s turn that around, in order to see how illogical that argument is. Instead of disabled people, let’s insert women into the equation:

     

    Every trained social worker doing a job as a case manager for a poor woman and her family instead of a case worker for a disabled person in a hospital costs lives. Every doctor who dedicates his or her life to providing gynecological healthcare for women instead of care for disabled children costs lives. Every dollar put into funding prenatal care for poor women instead of funding cancer drugs for those in the end statges of their cancer costs lives."

     

    This formula doesn’t work because it is stupid, because both people groups have a right to services. (Are you clear that my inversion of your argument in the preceding  paragraph was meant to show how ridiculous your argument is, and not an endorsement of that argument. If you weren’t you are now. Just in case were weren’t clear.)  Your argument  does not answer my initial question because a) it requires us to pit one disenfranchised group of people against another disinfranchised group of people, b) it refers to possible indirect effects, not direct effects, namely, directly causing someone’s death and c) because it does not refer to direct effects, it does not relate to what I asked you, which is how accommodations for the handicapped take life, potential or otherwise. If your answer is that the money spent on those services MIGHT INDIRECTLY IMPACT the proportion of resources spent on other services, than you have not answered my question

    Moreover, are you aware of how much the disabled get screwed in terms of funding? If funding is going to be cut somewhere, it’s going to be in disability services. I’ve seen situations were funding for the handicapped students was cut BEFORE funding for sports and music were cut, and that was in an affluent community. So, your resource equation in which you saddle disability services as taking life from someone else via their indirect impact on other services isn’t particularly compelling. The fact still remains that a late term abortion directly takes the life of a fetus that is still alive, whereas the "loss of life" you’re citing is theoretical and impossible to relate directly to the money spent on disability services.

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    Oh, so when your particular advocacy group doesn’t get support, they’re getting screwed because they deserve support but when it somebody else in trouble you don’t want a penny of your taxes to go to helping them out. I’m sure you’re aware that there are a whole bunch of people who don’t want their taxes to go to support a “bunch of people who make excuses about being disabled because they don’t want to work”.

     

    If you can’t grasp the lack of compassion in insisting your tax dollars shouldn’t go to treat a woman whose pregnancy has gone disastrously wrong because halfway through the pregnancy she discovers her fetus has a condition resulting in ‘alive only so long as using the mother as a support system’, which will die as soon as its removed, whether it’s removed at 20 weeks or 40 weeks, and have no sympathy for the toll that last 20 weeks takes on the woman, then why should anybody agree that the disabled have “a right to services”?

     

    And, yeah, my example does indeed pit one needy group against another, although it would be more correct to say that BOTH groups are pitted against the taxpayers reluctant to support any of them. But then so does your position, where you pit the continued, pointless, development of the fetus against the health of its mother.

  • progo35

    Wait a sec-are you saying that the woman involved is already a mother to the fetus she is carrying? Doesn’t that support my contention? If she’s a mother, isn’t the fetus she’s carrying a child, and doesn’t it have some rights independent of the woman herself?
    And, once again, you’ve totally sidestepped the issue of disability accommodations not taking a life vs. the late term abortion taking a life. That’s the fundamental difference. The law gives the woman the right to decide whether that difference is significant for her, but it does not allocate my money to help her do it, and that’s the way it should stay.

     

    Moreover, any woman in this position DOES deserve support, and I want my tax dollars to help her, just not in the particular way you want them too. If my money is used to pay for a C section, that is fine. If my money is used for medication or other medical intervention to prevent complications related to the anancephalic pregnancy, that’s fine, too. I’ll even be happy to see my tax dollars pay for the entire prenatal, gynecological, delivery, hospital, funeral, and grief counseling bill, just not the bill for an abortion.

     

    BTW, I also wouldn’t pay for someone else’s assisted suicide in a state where it is legal, although there’s no need-insurance companies in Oregon, Montana Washington are MORE than happy to cover those costs.
    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    You are aware that these are almost always WANTED pregnancies, aren’t you? You are aware that these women are looking forward to being mothers and are heartbroken when they find out their wanted baby is terribly deformed and has no chance at all to live?

     

    What ‘rights’ does the a fetus with ‘congenital anomylies incompatible with life’ NEED? Is it ‘fine’ if the C-section is done at 20 weeks? Is cutting the woman open, with all the risks that entails, a penalty she has to pay in order to get her uterus empty, perhaps because she didn’t do a satisfactory job of gestating? Or is there some magical process involved where morality can only be satisfied by the fetus being BIGGER when it dies?

  • progo35

    No, it would not be ‘fine’ to deliver an anancephalic fetus at 20 weeks via c section or any other method, any more than it would be okay to deliver a non-anancephalic baby at 20 weeks. "the magical process" involved in "satisfying morality" in this instance is the difference between Nature taking the baby’s life or the obgyn deliberately taking the baby’s life.

     

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • janine

    <blockquote> Removing it at forty has to be done to preserve the woman’s health-she
    certainly can’t continue carrying the fetus inside her, and, secondly,
    a fetus is ready to be born at 40 weeks, and that fetus/baby dying in
    the birth process or shortly thereafter happens naturally.  </blockquote>

     

    Is this because of the anencephaly?  The reason I ask is that pregnancies go to 42+ weeks in our family (mine were 42 and 42 1/2 with the second being longer, my sisters was 43 weeks).  Natural labor for me started at 42 weeks.  In our cases none of these were risks to our health, just very uncomfortable.   Granted I have no experience with anencephaly per se – but delivering at 40 weeks has not been required nor has 40 weeks been natural/normal in my immediate family. 

  • progo35

    Janine-don’t friggin distort the issue. We’re talking about full term vs. not full term. Obviously the woman cannot carry the baby indefinitely for the rest of her/it’s life.

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • janine

    I’m not distorting the issue, nor am I suggesting that a woman can carry a fetus indefinitely (that surely didn’t happen in my comment – 43 weeks does not equal indefinite).  Just wondering why you chose to make the statement you chose to make about the womans health being at risk after 40 weeks  (is it an anencephaly issue as I asked?) – and about it being acceptable to terminate a pregnancy at 40 as if 40 weeks were natural in all pregnancies.

  • janine

    I’ll quote crowepps from up above

    <blockquote>An anencephalic fetus isn’t "ready to be born" and often doesn’t signal the start of labor. It seems to me it’s just as ‘unnatural’ to induce labor at 40 weeks as it is at 20.</blockquote>

     

    Agreed.

  • mechashiva

    Why does it matter if an anencephalic fetus is carried to term? I seriously don’t understand why it is necessary to do so.

     

    The c-section would be decided at an arbitrary point. There would be no reason other than, "Oh, it’s been long enough now, so it’s okay for this kid to die now." The c-section would be a death-sentence to the baby, and it’s timing would be one of human convenience. By removing it from the womb to die from its abnormalities, you have killed it just as surely as you would if the death were from an abortion. It would just take longer, cost more, involve more risk to the mother, and cause suffering to the baby if it were ever conscious.

     

    It just makes people feel better to make a woman go through the motions of delivery. Just like it makes people feel better to remove feeding tubes from comatose patients and let them die "naturally" of dehydration than it would to inject them with a substance to kill them quickly. It is pretending natural death. It is pretending you have no hand in the death, but that is a lie.

  • progo35

    Just for the record, I think that starving and dehydrating anyone, comatose or not, is barbaric and disgusting. I don’t that should ever be done, period. But, neither should be ‘inject them with a substance to kill them quickly.’ What’s the matter with you ‘right to die’ folks? You’ve messed up your party line-either starving and dehydrating to death is "peaceful" or it isn’t. Ah! Is it because you’re using S and D as a segway into giving lethal injections to unconscious, nonconsenting patients? I think so.  

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • mechashiva

    Good job not actually addressing the points about abortion vs c-section for an anencephalic fetus.

     

    I don’t follow the right-to-die movement, if there is one. So as far as the party line goes, I don’t know what it officially is and I don’t care. I have my own thoughts on the subject, thank you very much. Rather than putting words in my mouth and making assumptions based on some other group’s political positions, you should read what I actually said to determine what I support and what I don’t. 

  • crowepps

    She had Alzheimer’s for years, and when she decided she had tolerated enough of its indignities, she absolutely refused to eat and she refused to drink and actually it was very peaceful. She just slipped peacefully away. Luckily, she had a living will and there was a ‘do not resuscitate’ order, so nobody insisted on dragging her over to the hospital and starting IV’s. Obviously she gave ‘consent’ since it was her idea, but I’m not sure if from your point of view this would be considered ‘suicide’ since it certainly was ‘unnatural’.

  • crowepps

    To be precise, Nature took the baby’s life when the neural tube failed to form properly.  It doesn’t seem to me to matter a whole bunch at which week it is removed and allowed to ‘naturally’ die.  Whether it is removed at 20 weeks or 40 weeks or 60 weeks, it’s still going to die as a result of anencephaly, and there is nothing the doctor or the woman can do to improve its chances.

  • crowepps

    We’re talking about full term vs. not full term. Obviously the woman cannot carry the baby indefinitely for the rest of her/it’s life.

    Why not? Wouldn’t it more ‘moral’, more ‘respectful of life’ to wait until Nature signals the pregnancy should end? And if labor never starts, wouldn’t it require having her blood pressure spike or her heart stutter or her kidneys failing so it could honestly be said that her “life is at risk”? After all, the rationale for forcing her to remain pregnant is exactly the same whether it’s continuing the pregnancy from week 22 to week 23, from week 39 to week 40 or from week 50 to week 51. “If her life isn’t immediately in danger then abortion is wrong.” There isn’t anything about reaching a certain number of weeks that puts her life in danger.

  • crowepps

    Due to damage from polio, my mother never had labor start naturally.  Her first pregnancy ended with an induction at 42 plus weeks, she had the same doctor for the second and was induced at 38 weeks, but then moved and had a new doctor for the third, a doctor who didn’t believe what she told him, and had another induction at 42 plus weeks delivering an almost 11 pound baby.  The same doctor induced the fourth pregnancy at 38 weeks.  As I recollect, the two miscarriages she had both had to removed by abortion as well, because whatever mechanism in the uterus is that triggers spontaneous abortion had apparently been atrophied by the polio.  Apparently in dealing with actual real women having actual real pregnancies, there are all sorts of quirky and unique physical differences, so that medical care can’t be identical for every case.  Maybe that’s why so many actual real doctors believe the Stupak Amendment is going to adversely affect their ability to provide medical care.

     

    It is interesting to speculate, though; the right-wing has made it very clear that they find it outrageous that their tax dollars are being diverted to support of the ‘undeserving’ poor.  Is this perhaps a subtle plot to cut down on number of poor outright, withholding medical care and then blaming the poor women for their "bad choices" after they die from pregnancy complications?  After all, Republican wives and daughters can continue to have their ‘problems’ taken care of during a quick trip to Europe.

  • progo35

    Well, one of the editors here is very involved in the right to die movement, and this site has trafficked in a lot of right to die logic, so, I find it more surprising that you don’t know about the RTD movement than I would be if you had said that you were totally invested in it. I did address the issue of abortion vs. c-section. A c section is done at delivery. Full term is considered to be between 36 and 40 weeks. There is no moral imperative for the woman to carry an anancephalic fetus any longer than she would a full term baby, because at that point, the baby has come to the point when it would normally be born if it were healthy. So, allowing it to be born via c section or induction is does not constitute a disrespect for life or constitute a taking of life in the way that abortion does. 

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    Oh, NOW I understand. She has to serve her full SENTENCE!

  • colleen

    She has to serve her full SENTENCE!

    See, now, if you were properly socialized you would recognise that the mandatory suffering of others = respect for ‘life’.

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

    Dr Warren Hern, MD

  • progo35

    " Oh, NOW I understand. She has to serve her full SENTENCE!"

    Oh, please, crowepps. That is NOT what I’m saying, and you know it.  

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    A person who is not hungry or thirsty because he or she is already dying and thus refuses food and fluids because of the natural dying process is NOT the kind of person I am talking about, Crowepps. I am talking about cognitively disabled people who  are not dying and need a feeding tube to eat and then are starved and dehydrated to death by having that source of nourishment removed. Your mother’s case an apple to their oranges. 

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    Full term is considered to be between 36 and 40 weeks. There is no moral imperative for the woman to carry an anancephalic fetus any longer than she would a full term baby

    I am not aware of any moral imperative that would require a woman to carry an anencephalic fetus one minute longer than when she finds out that the poor thing is doomed. Certainly there isn’t any logic whatsoever to the idea that removing it by c-section at 35 weeks (and having it die) is immoral but removing it by c-section at 36 weeks (and having it die) is perfectly okay because a magic dividing line has been crossed and this week for the first time it can be considered ‘full-term’. If 35 weeks squeeves under the line as possibly ‘moral’, why would 34 weeks be ‘immoral’? If 34 weeks is okay, why not 33? I’m sure you won’t be able to grasp just how silly it is to set an arbitrary line after which the woman is finally allowed to stop growing a fetus with “congenital anamoly incompatible with life”, but I think most people would be pretty stunned by your inhumanity towards the women in those terrible situations.

     

    IMO, incompatible with life is pre-dead, and once that diagnosis has been made, that’s it – the woman should not under any circumstances be REQUIRED to continue the pregnancy nor should she or her doctor be considered ‘immoral’ for doing the sensible, safe thing and ending the pregnancy before any other complications arise that could compromise her health. There is just absolutely no justification for leaving her in the situation except the desire to ignore the complexities of the situation so that there can be nice, clean-cut, black and white rules.

  • crowepps

    She was not dying. Alzheimer’s patients can last for years and years past the stage she was at. She deliberately made the choice to ignore her hunger and her thirst because she no longer was willing to suffer from the disease. This was HER choice memorialized before she became ill at all.

     

    So far as I’m aware, cognitively disabled people are not able to make such choices because so far as I am aware “cognitively disabled” means brain damaged and/or retarded. People with those conditions congenitally are never able to make those choices. People who become cognitively disabled because of damage from accidents or illness and who have stated their wishes in advance should have their choice respected. It certainly isn’t the business of anyone else to butt in and insist that they continue to suffer.

     

    You might want to read the entirety of the letter from Piergiorgio Welby to the President of Italy but in case you don’t take the time I’ll provide this excerpt:

    “His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, has said that “to the claim often put forward that it is necessary to resort to euthanasia in order to eliminate suffering, we must corroborate the inviolable dignity of human life, from conception to its natural end.” But what is “natural” in a reanimation room? What is natural in a hole in the belly and a pump that fills it with fats and proteins? What is natural about a hole in the windpipe and a pump that blows air into the lungs? What is natural about a body kept biologically functional with the help of artificial respirators, artificial feed, artificial hydration, artificial intestinal emptying, of death artificially postponed? I believe that it is possible to play with words for reasons of power or faith, but I do not believe that it is possible to “play” with the life and pain of someone else for the same reasons.

     

    When a terminally ill patient decides to forego emotions, memories, friendships, and life, and asks to put an end to a survival that is cruelly “biological,” … I believe that his will should be respected and heeded with the compassion represented by the force and consistency of secular thinking.

     

    http://assistedsuicide.org/blog/2006/09/26/piergiorgio-welbys-open-letter-to-the-italian-president-full-text/

  • progo35

    I’ve read it before, and once again, your citing of it is typical RTD bambuzzling. First of all, although it’s deplorable, removing food and hydration does not take the active step of ending a life. At least we haven’t gone that far off the cliff as a society, although, dying of thirst and hunger isn’t any better, and it takes a cold society to allow that kind of thing to be perpetuated against the handicapped. It IS society’s business to prevent suicide, whether the person trying to kill themselves is sick or not.

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • emma

    Progo, that is an absolutely vile, grotesque sentiment. Are you seriously claiming that terminating a pregnancy because a foetus is anencephalic constitutes discrimination against the literally brainless? Please tell me the point of continuing a pregnancy when the foetus is definitely going to die. Seriously. Why should anyone be required to do that? How does it benefit anyone involved – including the doomed foetus?

     

    You know, I would never, ever wish that situation on anyone, including you. And I would never, ever consider imposing my beliefs on anyone in that situation. Ever. You are a fundamentalist, Progo. I’m not meaning in the religious sense; I’m meaning in the sense that you seem to be convinced that there is a Right Way, and a Wrong Way, no exceptions, that you know the Right Way, and anyone who doesn’t do what you know is Correct is Wrong. Sometimes there is no Correct answer, Progo. And sometimes you are wrong.

     

    Do you understand why people get angry at you? It’s the fact that you don’t seem to have any concept of ambiguity; that sometimes, the most moral choice for someone else isn’t what the moral choice would be for you, but it’s still a moral choice. I really wish you would understand that, but at the very least, please try to understand why some of us are so offended by the beliefs you’re expressing. You come across as having no empathy – and you may have plenty; I don’t know – but that is how you come across.
    Can you really not distinguish a person with a disability from a foetus with no brain, that has no chance at living? Anencephaly is not comparable to a learning disability.

     

    Why in the name of whatever do you think it’s ok to impose pointless suffering on women? Because requiring women carrying foetuses that are definitely going to die is an imposition of utterly pointless suffering. I don’t understand it. Why would you want that?

  • crowepps

    It isn’t ‘society’s’ business to micromanage every moment of a person’s life and then force them through lengthy torture before their death. I am pretty appalled by the fact that you can’t see any difference between ‘I’m ready to go, turn this thing off’ and suicide. In your ideal world, are people allowed to make ANY choices? Are they allowed to refuse treatment when they absolutely do not want it?

  • progo35

    Crowepps,
    “I am pretty appalled by the fact that you can’t see any difference between ‘I’m ready to go, turn this thing off’ and suicide.” That is EXACTLY what you don’t seem to be able to do. We suddenly went from not removing food and fluids from the cognitively handicapped to Welby’s request for active euthanasia. You are the one that argued that the two are one and the same, NOT me. I argued against denying food and fluids to people who aren’t dying. You went off into the totally different aren of active euthanasia when you cited Welby’s letter.

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    Well, it’s a little difficult to discuss “removing food and fluids from the cognitively handicapped” when so far as I’m aware, nobody is actually doing that or promoting doing that. I’m sorry if it distresses you to have a conversation shift focus away from your bullet points, but the point I was trying to make when I cited Welby’s letter was that he IS extremely disabled, and he wanted the various artificial aides removed because he no longer found them tolerable, and so far as I am aware that is NOT “active euthanasia” but instead his right to refuse treatment. Since he had no cognitive handicap whatsoever, in my opinion his refusal of treatment should have been honored without a whole lot of argument. Insisting on keeping people’s bodies alive through artifical means when they themselves state their soul is ready to go on is cruel and intrusive. People who insist that’s necessary for ‘morality’ should stop trying to manage the decisions of strangers and go get some therapy to deal with their own anxieties about death and self-worth.

  • progo35

    No, Crowepps. I’ve seen the video recording of that letter on youtube, and, at least in that particular version, he explicitly requests active euthanasia, not just turning off his machines. People already have the right to do that in Italy, where he lives.

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

     

    Here is the link:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43UtSageNlY

    At the very end, at 13:34 or therabouts, you will see that he is trying to get the Italian president to legalize euthanasia just as it is practiced in Switzerland and the Netherlands. So, he is not talking about shutting off his machines and dying as a result, he is talking about a lethal injection or ingestible poison used for the specific purpose of ending someone’s life. You may think this is fine, but it is definitely a step beyond "turn this thing off, I’m ready to go." Moreover, if you weren’t aware that the cognitively handicapped are being starved and dehydrated to death in hospitals across America, than I can’t blame you-the media never shows it to us, but it is there, and, like active euthanasia, is of particular concern to disability rights advocates, such as the group Not Dead Yet. 

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    P.S.-less special education students would NEED to attend private schools if the public schools would get their rear ends together and provide the FREE accommodations that would enable such students to succeed in regular school. 

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    Emma,

    No sarcasm intended-I have to say that I appreciate you not wishing anancephaly upon my future children, in contrast to ahunt, who cannot seem to stop herself from doing so.

    You ask if I want women to endure pointless suffering. I do not. I do not want women to have to carry anancephalic fetuses to term, I just don’t think that abortion is an acceptable solution to the problem of an anancephalic fetus, which, in turn, results in my opposition to paying for procedures to prevent women from carrying such pregnancies to term. I would be happy to help pay for such procedures if they were not so directly antithetical to everything I know about human life and dignity. It’s not because I want women to suffer that I oppose helping to pay for such procedurs, and it’s not the money, either. I am happy to help pay for prenatal care, grief counseling, funeral arrangements, and anything else the woman needs. I just don’t want to help fund an abortion.

     I’m sorry that I come across as not having empathy, as I do feel a lot of compassion for people in this situation. I feel that I do understand that women who choose to terminate such pregnancies may be doing what they are doing out of love for themselves and their child. I am not so cruel as to assume that women who make this choice are shallow people who don’t care about their offspring. I just can’t, in good conscience, have my tax dollars be a part of it.  That is what makes abortion such a complicated issue-even people who care about women who would gladly help them get abortions otherwise, feel that abortion is a step to far for them in what they can support because of the nature of that particular procedure. 

    I wish that things were easier and that I could just say, "Sure, I understand. Of course I want my tax dollars to help you with that." But, I just can’t. It is not compatible with my ethics. My ethics tell me to help women in these situations, but not in that particular way. I just can’t live with that, and I don’t think that I and other tax payers who want to help women but are morally opposed to abortion should have to. That, to me, if what complicates the abortion issue-some of us may want to help the woman exert her choice in this situation, but we feel that we are morally compelled not to. It would be easier if everyone saw abortion as a way to help women out of a terrible situation, or if everyone regarded abortion as wrong, but that is not the case. So, please don’t assume that every tax payer who does not want to fund such a procedure is doing so because he/she doesn’t care about the woman and her suffering. Positions on this sort of issue, like the positions people take in supporting abortion in this circumstance, are a lot more complicated than that.  

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    You might want to do a little looking around at what schools specializing in special education provide.

    http://www.iser.com/

    Certainly the necessary level of support for children with severe learning disabilities, the highly trained teachers or tutors and the various assistive technologies, are not something that can be provided free by public schools.

  • crowepps

    I just can’t, in good conscience, have my tax dollars be a part of it.

    I don’t have any problem with your insistence that your tax dollars can’t be a part of it. I have a real problem with your insistence that MY tax dollars can’t be a part of it.

  • ahunt

    But you DO wish pointless suffering on women, progo…particularly poorer women lacking resources. How else can you reconcile:

     "I do not want women to have to carry anancephalic fetuses to term" with "I
    just don’t think that abortion is an acceptable solution to the problem
    of an anancephalic fetus"

     

    You DO want women to have to carry anencaphalitic pregnancies to term…to be forced to undergo the physical trauma  of cesarian, etc…BECAUSE there are no alternatives other than abortion.

     

  • ahunt

    I appreciate you not wishing anancephaly upon my future children, in
    contrast to ahunt, who cannot seem to stop herself from doing so.

     

    Guilty as charged. Think of it as the response of someone who has actually been a part of the  familial devastation of anencephaly, and has absolutely no tolerance for ANYONE who would subject me, my loved ones, or anyone else… to pointless, dangerous physical trauma, and the overwhelming emotional  toll…simply because doing so makes one feel good about one’s beliefs.

  • progo35

    But, Crowepps-the federal government makes no distinction between pro choice and pro llife tax dollars. They all go to the same place.  

     

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

     Ahunt-I’m sorry, but the fact that your sister went through anancephaly does NOT give you the moral right to wish it on someone else. That is profoundly misanthropic and immature. I deal with a lot with my learning disorder and depression, but I don’t go around wishing it on someone else- or someone else’s CHILD, for God’s sake-just so they will change their mind about how to respond to those issues. And no, I’m not comparing LD to anancephaly, I’m saying that it is wrong to wish one’s own misfortune upon someone else, and that going through a misfortune does not entitle someone to wish it on someone else with impunity.

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    You are not pardoned, ahunt.  

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    People don’t get to decide individually where their tax dollars go — of they did, there wouldn’t be so many of them included in the defense budget.

     

    What do you think? Should we set up a check-off system, where each taxpayer gets to allow or disallow categories in the budget where their couple grand in taxes can be spent?

     

    I think it’s pretty arrogant to take the view that every single penny in the entire $2,900,000,000 is your penny and that you are the only one who is important – that you personally get to pick what’s funded and what isn’t, since the corrolary is that other people aren’t important and they don’t get to fund anything unless you also approve.

     

    I know I sure as heck never was asked whether my tax money could go for nonsense like abstinence education, the promotion of marriage, providing Viagra to sex offenders, crisis pregnancy centers or ‘Come to Jesus’ rehabilitation programs in the prisons led by ex-cons like Chuck Colson.

  • progo35

    Well, Crowepps, here’s what I know:

    Given that I live in MA, my tax dollars have been funding abortions for as long as I have been earning them-so, states clearly DO provide abortion funding through their own coffers. I’m not refusing to pay my taxes in response to them being used for such purposes, but I am certainly not going to stand up for my tax dollars being used to fund abortions on a federal level. My taxes are already being used to fund such procedures, and since I find such procedures abhorent, I am not going to cheer for more of them to be enabled through federal funding.

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    I didn’t ask for your pardon, progo. There is no excuse for what you wish on women who have no resources and no defenses against the harm people like you would inflict on them. You won’t get the well-insured, well-supported women: you’ll only get the poor…the uninsured…the abandoned…the alone…sacrifices on the altar of your holy imperative.

  • crowepps

    You must really be doing well for a grad student if your taxes were $25.5 million. Or do you think down at the Revenue office they separate out YOUR tax dollars and send them right down to provide abortions? Maybe, knowing how you feel, they segregate every penny and make sure they go into the over a $1,264,362,905 spent on support of the disabled.

  • progo35

    oh, im sorry. i did not know that being of a different opinion than you on this issue meant that i was asking for my future kids to have anencephaly. My bad. 

     

    Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • progo35

    don’t be weird. i never said that i paid a lot of taxes from my part time job at barnes and noble, just that my state does fund abortions via its medicaid program, and that obviously, since taxes go toward anything the state pays for, my taxes already fund abortions.

    ot"Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    No progo…I was the one wishing the experience on you…

    You get to ask for anything you want.

  • crowepps

    Tax dollars are just like all other dollars, they can only be spent once and once spent, they are gone.  I don’t think the taxes from a part time job at Barnes and Noble would be sufficient to pay for much more than a couple of expense account lunches where department heads suck up to the legislators on the budget committee.

  • crowepps

    Some people consider that an unwillingness to act compassionately towards someone in a terrible situation might encourage the universe to see to it that you get to experience that situation firsthand. Personally I think it’s a lot more random than that, and hope nothing bad happens in your life, but I wouldn’t be surprised to find that a direct personal experience where you get to walk in those shoes just might make you a little more humble and lessen your self-righteousness about the actions of the rest of humanity.

  • progo35

     

    Well, by that logic, I guess I can feel free to take the position that we "shouldn’t be surprised" that Dr.Tiller was shot-after all, he did kill thousands of late term fetuses and then he was killed; and, you can feel free to take the position that  Mr. Poulin got what he deserved for displaying pictures of aborted fetuses outside high schools. Hey, it’s just Karma. I don’t think that, I think that’s an evil way to think, but isn’t that just as logical as you saying that because I disagree with ahunt and you on the issue of anancephaly, I "shouldn’t be surprised" if I experience it?

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • crowepps

    I didn’t say you “shouldn’t be surprised” if you experience a disaster in a pregnancy or that I thought you should experience it. I specifically said that I hope you never do. I also said it wouldn’t be surprising if your feelings on the issue were changed by having the experience directly. I disagree that believing you are capable of learning compassion from direct experience is “an evil way to think”. Wrong maybe, attributing to you abilities beyond your scope possibly, but I just can’t see how that’s evil.

  • ahunt

    Oh just walk the damn mile, progo.

  • progo35

    Yes, you did ask for my pardon, ahunt, when you said, "pardon me if I wish the nightmare of anencephaly on you and yours, progo." You are not pardoned. 

     

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • ahunt

    Sarcasm being lost on you…an’ all.

  • emma

    Progo – Thank you for the very civil response. (also no sarcasm intended.) :)

    I’m not feeling at all combative tonight, lol. I don’t agree with you, but I appreciate your taking the time to respond.

  • emma

    ahunt, I meant to say before that I’m so sorry your family went through such a tragic experience. xxxx

  • progo35

    What, Crowepps, no comment? Afraid to respond when something tangible, such as Pierro’s youtube testimony,contradicts your statement?

    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich