Do Anti-Choicers Need to Get a Life?


At the NARAL-sponsored screening of 12th and Delaware last Friday in New York, the laughs were few and far between.  The documentary, which is slated for release on HBO on August 3rd, chronicles the tension between a Florida-based abortion clinic and the crisis pregnancy center that set up across the street.  Between the women seeking abortion because of often-untenable situations, the mean-spirited bullies on the anti-choice side, and the palpable fear in the abortion clinic, there’s not a lot of merriment onscreen.  But I laughed darkly to myself at one point, when the owner of the clinic, while expressing frustration with the protesters who plague her clinic, notes that the protesters seem to have nothing else going on in their lives.  How true, I chuckled to myself.  How sadly true.

It’s something that activists on the pro-choice side often find most exasperating.  I call it the “life differential.”  Not “life” as in the misnomer “pro-life.”  “Life,” as in the having of one.  The owner of the abortion clinic in 12th and Delaware puts it perfectly.  She wishes that they could get a group to go over to the crisis pregnancy center and protest them night and day, but the people who have the will to do that don’t have the time.  They have a life to live—jobs to do, relationships to tend, hobbies to enjoy.  Even those of us who work in the field of promoting reproductive rights have nothing approaching the endless time and energy that anti-choicers give to their obsession. 

The life differential is what directors Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady capture so well in this documentary, which is their follow-up to their 2006 smash hit “Jesus Camp.” In the first half of the movie, they follow the anti-choicers both in and out of the crisis pregnancy center, and the most startling thing they discover is how much they don’t seem to have a life outside of their obsession.  The woman who runs the crisis pregnancy center admits as much, talking about how she’s perfect for her job, because she has no family or any other responsibilities other than her dogs that could get between her and her day-in, day-out obsession with bullying pregnant women out of their choice to abort through emotional manipulation, lies, bribery, and even just making it difficult for women to leave the crisis pregnancy center. 

You also get to know the priest who offers leadership to the crisis pregnancy center, a man who grins wildly when recounting his finest moments of vicious bullying of abortion patients and clinic workers.  (It’s hard not to suspect that the Catholic church’s celibacy requirement feeds the anti-choice movement precisely because it creates a class of men who are especially attracted to bullying women who are quite obviously not celibate.) And of course, you have the bored old lady with nothing better to do than shake baby dolls at the clinic workers.

To round out the standard cast of anti-choicers any clinic escort knows from their own town is the angry dude who fronts like he’s a big man in his Harley T-shirts and tough guy talk.  Alarmingly, the filmmakers capture this guy following the couple who owns the clinic around and brags about he intends to publish the addresses of the doctors.  His pathetic bravado about how he doesn’t care what someone does with these addresses is so alarming it can distract from what else they capture.  But this man’s constantly simmering rage threatens to boil over the most when he talks about how the doctor goes home to his wife and his children and just goes about enjoying his life.  It’s hard to get into the mental space of someone who can shake with rage at the idea of a man hugging his children and loving his wife, but for a brief moment, you at least see a small slice of the anger that so often leads to acts of violence.

The filmmakers get out of the way, simply presenting their subjects in their own environment with no editorializing.  But the format, which covers the anti-choicers first and then the clinic workers, draws attention to the strong contrast between the evil image of abortion providers that anti-choicers concoct and the reality of what goes on in the clinic.  In the first half, we see the woman who runs the crisis pregnancy center teaching a class where she explains that women go in to a clinic and get a hard sell to get an abortion.  In the second half, we see the reality—the clinic owner reminding women over and over that this is only something they should do if they’re really sure.  The anti-choicers paint a picture of clinic workers who perform abortions because they’re just evil people full of demons.  But in the clinic, you meet compassionate people who spend their days caring for women who are often in miserable situations.

The anti-choicers in the film have spent so long painting themselves as saints fighting evil that they seem to have no idea how much they come across as heartless bullies.  That’s the only explanation I can come up with for how the filmmakers were able to capture their subjects badly misusing women.  The usual lies you expect from a crisis pregnancy center are bad enough—telling women they’re not as far along as they are, telling women they’ll get breast cancer if they have abortion, telling people not to use contraception because it doesn’t work—but in this film, you see even nastier lies that make those look small.  The crisis pregnancy center “counselor” tells a woman who is in an abusive relationship that her partner will quit abusing her if she has his baby.  (Luckily, the woman sees right through this lie, and seems a bit baffled that anyone could believe such a whopper.)  And, in the climax of the film, the anti-choicers talk a woman off the porch of the abortion clinic by promising her clothes, rent money, and food for her six existing children, as well as future support for child number seven. 

But when she follows them in to the crisis pregnancy center, we find that what she gets is a stuffed animal.  She’s told to pick one.  No doubt the people who donated that animal pat themselves on the back for their generosity, but the audience is left wondering why they couldn’t even spring to give her toys for all her children, especially when they promised her the moon. 

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  • critter

    I had an abortion in 1991.  I knew what I wanted, that’s why I went there.

     

    The counselor made a point of separating my from my SO and asking me if I had any doubts or second thoughts at all.

  • radicalhousewife

    YES.

     

    Slightly longer answer:

     

     HELL YES!

  • wendy-banks

    Yes! These people need to get a hobby, or maybe some couseling, or both.

    I just came in from trying to repair the stucco on the house– Hobby? No. Pain in the ass? Yes. I’d love to hire someone ELSE to do it, but I’m poor. So, I do a little every day, and by, oh, September, I’ll be done, maybe. Or not… And then I have to do my Dad’s… *groans* I’m never gonna get done… It’s like that guy in the Greek myth doomed to forever push a huge rock up the side of a mountain.

    So, I don’t have time to protest– Kid, sick parent, pets, hobbies, chores… When I have the energy, that is. Being cronically ill eats your energy, big time.

  • bei1052

    Funnily enough, most “anti-choicers” do have a life. You’d do well to read “The Making of Pro-life Activists: How Social Movement Mobilization Works”.

     

    …And, lol @ trying to play the “you have no life” game. I guess, following your logic, you have no life ‘cuz you’re constantly blogging, right?

  • amanda-marcotte

    An actual and frustrating imbalance.  Anti-choice activism is pitch perfect to become the obsession of lifeless losers, because it’s predicated on resenting people who clearly have a) a sex life and b) enough going on in their lives that unintended childbirth isn’t an option.  The hyper-focus anti-choicers have on college girls in particular points to how much resentment feeds the machine. 

     

    Which, of course, is why it’s the source of so much domestic terrorism.  Get enough people without much going on, and a few of them are going to determine that they have nothing to lose, so they might as well commit some acts of terrorism.

     

    One of the most fascinating aspects of the documentary was how the owner of the abortion clinic simply couldn’t wrap her mind around why it was so important to the protesters to ruin young women’s lives.  They were single-minded towards this goal.  It seemed that the more a woman had to lose by having a baby, the harder they worked at trying to convince her to do it.  A 15-year-old was a bigger score than a 24-year-old. Someone in an abusive relationship who needed that abortion to help her get out?  Break any rule of basic decency to get her further entangled in it.  It’s sick.

  • bei1052

    Forget the fact that you seem content to live in your own little world, and let’s forget the facts that 1.) Some pro-lifers do have kids and 2.) Most every pro-lifer has sex, and ignoring the red herring completely, do you ever really– and I mean really– read the very things you type out? That’s a serious question, for considering the things you’re prone to type out,  it’s hard for me to believe that you do. But moving on to something else.

     

    Tell me again what age demographic accounts for more abortions then any other group? In case you didn’t know, it’s the 20 – 24 range. That answers your “focus on college girls” question (And, yes, I humored it). Tell me again why people protest so vehemently against abortion (Yes, even those women whom you somehow think you speak for, even though you don’t even speak for a plurality of them). No, it’s not because they’re jealous of someone else, or feel any resentment towards someone else, but rather because abortion kills another human being, and they find the idea of one individual killing another solely at her discretion to be repugnant. If you honestly can’t wrap your mind around that fact, then there’s no debating with you, for you most assuredly don’t live in this world or any one I’m familar with.

     

    Anyway, you should read the aforementioned book. You might learn something you didn’t know, like in general pro-life activists have more going for them then the average American. But that would require doing a bit of reading, so I’m not going to get my hopes up.

     

    And, just to address this little tidbit, if you’re in an abusive relationship then– guess what?– leave the relationship. If the father is that abusive, then go to the courts and get a restraining order and petition for sole custody of your child. You don’t kill your child. That’s like a “duh” kind of thing. Or, at least, it should be, but your logic is so warped, the aforementioned never really crossed your mind.

     

    (Oh, and do you have a life? Seeing as how you blog and stuff so much, it’s hard to believe that you do *hint hint, wink wink*)

  • saltyc

    The more is known about what really goes on, the more people will realize that the control of one’s own reproduction is a fundamental right. This phenomenon functions on secrecy.

    I think you can pretty easily do a psychological profile of an anti-choicer, which would fit many in the “movement”. A profile cannot be done for women who get abortions, as they present a cross-section of the entire fertile female population.

    Be afraid, very afraid, of someone so monomaniacally devoted to what they believe is moral that they will not hear from their perceived enemy. They dare not ask a woman why she needs an abortion. That is a clue to their moral blindness.

  • invalid-0

    I’d like to thank Ms. Marcotte for reminding me that even if my chosen career doesn’t work out, I can always go into blogging.  I look forward to her exciting sequel to “Pro-Lifers need to ‘get a life'” – what could it be?  

    “Pro-Lifers are stupidheads.”

    “I know you are, but what am I?”

    or “Antiwomanjerkfacesayswhat?” 

    Amanda Marcotte, nothing less than professional, insightful and adult discussions about the legality and protection of women’s health issues.

  • rebellious-grrl

    And, just to address this little tidbit, if you’re in an abusive relationship then– guess what?– leave the relationship. If the father is that abusive, then go to the courts and get a restraining order and petition for sole custody of your child.

     

    Bei1052, wow is everything that simplistic in your world? That illustrates how out of touch you are with reality. Amanda’s right, “Get a life!”

     

     

    • faultroy

      I certainly agree with your comment. But it is also true that we as a nation spend tens of millions of dollars on these sick dysfunctional women that get involved in sick abusive relationships, have chldren and foist their illness on the rest of the members of society–including women.  The reality is that crisis shelters give these women money, food, clothing, a place to sleep and in 98 per cent  of the time they go back to these same men and perpetuate the same cycle over and over again. And yes, everything is just that simple–say no…say no to the booze, crack, heroin, cocaine, sex, and the pointless wasted life.  But the one thing they cannot do is take personal responsibility for their own mess–that is why we call them ill.  But Bei1052 is not wrong.  For when you are well, you can say no.  That is why the majority of Americans–that wind up footing the bill for these loosers–are not considered ill.

  • rebellious-grrl

    How mature of your arex. Is someone a little jealous of Ms. Marcotte? Did you know that Amanda Marcotte is a successful published book author? And sure you could go into blogging, I doubt you would be as successful or as well known as Ms. Marcotte.

  • bei1052

    Bei1052, wow is everything that simplistic in your world? That illustrates how out of touch you are with reality. Amanda’s right, “Get a life!”

     

    Indeed, I like to keep it simple. Now that you know, I’d like to ask you what’s wrong with my suggestion (which really is more then just a mere suggestion)? Do tell, because I’m all ears.

     

  • prochoiceferret

    Indeed, I like to keep it simple. Now that you know, I’d like to ask you what’s wrong with my suggestion (which really is more then just a mere suggestion)? Do tell, because I’m all ears.

    Wow! You’re really interested in learning about this, aren’t you?

  • crowepps

    The reason they don’t leave is because they have heard, over and over again, if they do he will kill her or kill the children. A threat given credibility by the daily news reports that men have done exactly that to more than 1,000 women annually, often along with the children or in front of the children. And, of course, the priest or pastor is usually telling her GOD doesn’t want her to leave, that GOD doesn’t want her to ‘destroy the family’, that GOD wants her to be “more submissive” so she doesn’t CAUSE the violence.

     

    It’s hard to believe you’re really this ignorant. If you’re just here for the fun of pushing people’s buttons, it is obvious you can be classified as one of those ProLifers described as “not having a life”.

  • bei1052

    The reason they don’t leave is because they have heard, over and over again, if they do he will kill her or kill the children. A threat given credibility by the daily news reports that men have done exactly that to more than 1,000 women annually, often along with the children or in front of the children. And, of course, the priest or pastor is usually telling her GOD doesn’t want her to leave, that GOD doesn’t want her to ‘destroy the family’, that GOD wants her to be “more submissive” so she doesn’t CAUSE the violence.

     

    First and foremost, please join us in reality. I’ve never known any priest tell someone that they should stay with someone who abuses them. Second of all, I really want to make sure I understand this correctly. So instead of leaving the guy and keeping the baby, she should stay with him and get rid of the baby? ‘Cuz I’m pretty sure you’d say no, in which case you’re probably going to say leave him and get rid of the baby, as staying with him isn’t an option. But then that begs the question as to why she should get rid of the baby if she’s going to leave him, anyway? Indeed, if she’s going to leave him anyway, then there’s no point in getting rid of the baby. Ergo, you shouldn’t have any problems with what I wrote as it’s– dare I say it?– common sense.

     

    Now I totally await your response to this, as this should be nothing if not interesting.

     

    It’s hard to believe you’re really this ignorant. If you’re just here for the fun of pushing people’s buttons, it is obvious you can be classified as one of those ProLifers described as “not having a life”.

     

    Before you try to call others ignorant, you’d best be doing a bit of self-reflection beforehand.

  • invalid-0

    Did you know that Amanda Marcotte is a successful published book author?

    Nope. Never heard of her outside RH. I’m sure it’s an exhilarating read, though.

  • ljdavid56

    I’ve noticed that besides the one woman of child-bearing age who carries the “I regret my abortion” sign (she regrets it so no one else should be able to choose) that the rest of the protesters at our clinic are old men and post-menopausal women, with an occasional priest thrown in.  Obviously these are people with nothing but time on their hands.

  • saltyc

    But they could be doing volunteer work that actually results in people thanking them. Every volunteer job I’e ever had, the people I come into contact with thank me, sometimes they go out of their way to do so. How can someone think they’re being helpful when they’re met with fear, tears and obscene gestures?

  • rebellious-grrl

    why she should get rid of the baby if she’s going to leave him, anyway? Indeed, if she’s going to leave him anyway, then there’s no point in getting rid of the baby. Ergo, you shouldn’t have any problems with what I wrote as it’s– dare I say it?– common sense.

     

    No, NOT common sense Bei1052. Common sense would be to get the hell out of the abusive relationship, get an abortion if pregnant, and not have any ties to an abusive man. Why would she want to be a single mom? Why would she want to have to fight him in court for child custody? It’s VERY expensive to raise a child as a single person. Not to mention trying to get child support from an abusive man. Being that restraining orders don’t work, court orders are not followed or are ignored — I would NEVER expect a woman to continue a pregnancy as she is trying to leave an abusive situation. That is the complete opposite of common sense.

  • colleen

    But then that begs the question as to why she should get rid of the baby if she’s going to leave him, anyway? Indeed, if she’s going to leave him anyway, then there’s no point in getting rid of the baby. Ergo, you shouldn’t have any problems with what I wrote as it’s– dare I say it?– common sense.

    So, where’s the male responsibility in this situation? One of the problems with the ‘gestate every zygote or else’ argument is that rapists and abusive men not only make shitty husbands, they make shitty fathers.

    I can see that for someone who brags openly about his fantasies of kicking a woman he disapproves of “in the uterus” and who has been consistently and openly abusive in this forum this might be difficult news to take but it really looks as if you’re suggesting that motherhood is mandatory and male responsibility is optional. Perhaps if you took an interest in feminism and  anti-poverty issues you would be able to stop making such a fool of yourself here.   Besides,  I am really wishing you would stop wasting our time.

  • crowepps

    First and foremost, please join us in reality. I’ve never known any priest tell someone that they should stay with someone who abuses them.

    Do you routinely sit in on pastoral counseling sessions?  I’ve personally known at least three women who were told it was their duty to endure and ‘offer up their suffering’. 

    Second of all, I really want to make sure I understand this correctly. So instead of leaving the guy and keeping the baby, she should stay with him and get rid of the baby? ‘Cuz I’m pretty sure you’d say no, in which case you’re probably going to say leave him and get rid of the baby, as staying with him isn’t an option.

    Well, that isn’t my decision, is it?  It’s her decision based on whether being pregnant at this time will make it harder to find work, harder to take care of the children she already has, harder to find help.

    But then that begs the question as to why she should get rid of the baby if she’s going to leave him, anyway? Indeed, if she’s going to leave him anyway, then there’s no point in getting rid of the baby.

    As I happen to currently be typing up an appeal transcript in which Mr. Abuser is trying to get ‘shared custody’ and insisting that his former girlfriend ought to have to ‘consult on important matters’ with him, like whether or not she breastfeds, actually, yeah, there is.  It prevents a situation in which he can use the child as a hostage to continue controlling her.  The law in Alaska is that a history of domestic abuse should only be ‘considered’ in deciding custody and visitation, because ‘a bad husband isn’t necessarily a bad father’.  Unfortunately, however good they are with the children, bad husbands who were abusers continue to be dangerous to their ex-wives.

    Ergo, you shouldn’t have any problems with what I wrote as it’s– dare I say it?– common sense.

    No, it’s not common sense.  It’s an argument out of ignorance.  And, by the way, those 1,000 plus women who are killed every year?  They WERE leaving.  Women DO leave.  That’s why just about every town in the country has a domestic violence shelter of some kind.  Unfortunately, since the men’s criminal actions do not often result in criminal convictions and serious jail time, they soon find a new woman who will go through the abuse cycle with them until SHE leaves.

    • faultroy

      I have to take exception to the term “abuse.”  Since you say that you are in the business, you know that the law is very clear.  There is Assault and Battery.  Regardless as to whether something is considered “abuse,” the reality is that society does not tolerate “Assault and Battery.” Abuse is something different than Assault and Battery.  When someone hits you, that leaves a mark.  And because of the misleading information by Feminists, abuse can be as little as criticism (I suggest you read the CDC Study–even it–as biased and bigoted as it is–specifically states this.)  As far as “controlling” is concerned, both males and females control each other equally.  There are no viable studies substantiating one gender having an inside edge on control.  Even unmarried couples just dating have issues with people wanting different things.  Women have to take some responsibility for something affecting their lives.  If things were just as you say, we would not be seeing a recividism of 98% of these dysfunctional females.  You’re not a fly on the wall any more than I am.  You don’t know who says what, or even whether the info you are given is accurate–it’s one person’s word against the other–a classic “he said/she said.” I have no problem with your personal biases, but I do have an issue with taking your personal anecdotal informaton and projecting it as fact when all the empirical evidence indicates just the opposite.  Even the flawed CDC Abuse Study concludes that in 17% of the Intimate Partner Abuse Incidents, it is men that are being abused by the women.  You also do not discuss the classic interdictions of abuse:  Drug Addiction, Alchoholism and Mental Illness–on both the women and the men’s part.  And yes, women do leave every year–but 98% go back.  And a 1,000 women per year dying at the hands of intimate partner violence–with all the drugs, booze, prostitution and illegal activity going on and with a total population of 330 million people–what percentage is that?  We kill 50,000 just in auto accidents.  250,000 die per year just because of one form of cancer.  A minimum of 75,000 people die because of doctor and nursing clerical error, and  women are the greatest abusers of children.  And Mothers are directly responsible for the Type Two Diabetes that is running rampant in our children today. How about putting your number in a little perspective?  Single Motherhood is the greatest cause of family poverty in the USA.  Who’s to blame for this?  The Father–when almost 85% of divorces are initiated by women?  Should a woman be held financially accountable for putting her children at financial risk through divorce?  Should we penalize her like we do men–if she doesn’t pay–she should go to jail?  Should we hold a woman financially responsible for the way her children turn out in society?  So if the kid becomes a financial burden, should we throw her in jail for being an unfit mother?  Where is the accountablity from the parenting aspect?  Since “your in the business,” and you are such an advocate–how about holding you personally responsible both legally and financially for the way her children turn out–after all, you’re the expert aren’t you–you have all the knowledge and the answers right?  Well we do the same to doctors–if they screw up we expect them to pay.  How about you advocating and taking personal responsibility for the “fallen angels” that you are so insistent are given a poor deal and we’lll charge you personally for their dysfunctionality.  Are you comfortable with that?  You’re good at running the mouth, but I will personally pledge $30,000 per year for every woman that you treat that you will sign over your personal assets to me if she fails. That should be no problem for you should it?  I mean if they are such victims just waiting to be saved you should jump at the chance right?  I can make it happen.  If you want to trade emails, I can make it this happen.  And no, I am not kidding.  I’ve made the offer before, but for some strange reason, when it comes time to sign on the dotted line, I fail to see the signature.  For some strange inexplicable reason, advocates never want to risk their own financial future for the opportunity to help someone in dire need–they always wail for “the government” to make it happen.  Well you and me–we are “the government.” Let’s  Make it happen. 

  • bei1052

    Do you routinely sit in on pastoral counseling sessions?  I’ve personally known at least three women who were told it was their duty to endure and ‘offer up their suffering’.

     

    The onus is on you to prove what you say is true, and anecdotal evidence is never sufficient proof of something being true. And I’m still calling BS on the aforementioned lol, ‘cuz that doesn’t even sound right.

     

    Well, that isn’t my decision, is it?  It’s her decision based on whether being pregnant at this time will make it harder to find work, harder to take care of the children she already has, harder to find help.

     

    And, pray tell, how is any of that even remotely relevant to leaving someone who is abusing her. The answer? It’s not. Funny that.

     

    As I happen to currently be typing up an appeal transcript in which Mr. Abuser is trying to get ‘shared custody’ and insisting that his former girlfriend ought to have to ‘consult on important matters’ with him, like whether or not she breastfeds, actually, yeah, there is.  It prevents a situation in which he can use the child as a hostage to continue controlling her.  The law in Alaska is that a history of domestic abuse should only be ‘considered’ in deciding custody and visitation, because ‘a bad husband isn’t necessarily a bad father’.  Unfortunately, however good they are with the children, bad husbands who were abusers continue to be dangerous to their ex-wives.

     

    Oh… I see. So your argument is that a woman should be able to kill her child because the father could be granted visitation rights and thus take that chance to abuse her? I’m going to tell you now that that makes little sense. Actually, scratch that. It makes no sense at all. If he was so inclined, he could do that in the absence of a child. As it is, you’re trying to use the child as a scapegoat instead of dealing with the larger problem. But such is the way with pro-choicers.

     

    No, it’s not common sense.  It’s an argument out of ignorance.  And, by the way, those 1,000 plus women who are killed every year?  They WERE leaving.  Women DO leave.  That’s why just about every town in the country has a domestic violence shelter of some kind.  Unfortunately, since the men’s criminal actions do not often result in criminal convictions and serious jail time, they soon find a new woman who will go through the abuse cycle with them until SHE leaves.

     

    Saying that a woman should leave someone who is abusing her and petition the courts for sole custody of her child is an argument out of ignorance? Really…? Elle. Oh. Elle. I’m really not sure what to say to that one, really.

     

    And, just so you know, the rest of that has absolutely nothing to do with anything I wrote out, so I’m not going to bother with it. Your propensity to go off on some completely unrelated tangents is kind of funny, really.

  • bei1052

    So, where’s the male responsibility in this situation? One of the problems with the ‘gestate every zygote or else’ argument is that rapists and abusive men not only make shitty husbands, they make shitty fathers.

     

    Yet they make excellent money mines. Well, moreso then women, anyway.

     

    I can see that for someone who brags openly about his fantasies of kicking a woman he disapproves of “in the uterus” and who has been consistently and openly abusive in this forum this might be difficult news to take but it really looks as if you’re suggesting that motherhood is mandatory and male responsibility is optional.

     

    Not bragging openly. Telling you how I felt towards her, ‘cuz she wasn’t too shy about telling people how she’d already had two abortions, how they weren’t a big deal and how she’d probably have more in the future.

     

    And, for the love of <enter diety here>, please show me where I said that male responsibility is optional. In fact, I want you to show me where I said this. Go ahead and amuse me, because I’m sure you totally pulled that out of thin air (which you seem to do a lot).

     

    Perhaps if you took an interest in feminism and  anti-poverty issues you would be able to stop making such a fool of yourself here.   Besides,  I am really wishing you would stop wasting our time.

     

    Relatively few people care about modern feminism, and with good reason. It’s stupid and can be summed up entirely as the support for abortion. I heard a joke once, and it was something along the lines of, “How do you clear a room?”, with the punchline being “Tell everyone you’re a feminist”.

     

    And as to the anti-poverty thing, well… I’ll leave you to believe what you will. You will anyway.

  • gordon

    No, it’s not because they’re jealous of someone else, or feel any resentment towards someone else, but rather because abortion kills another human being, and they find the idea of one individual killing another solely at her discretion to be repugnant. If you honestly can’t wrap your mind around that fact, then there’s no debating with you, for you most assuredly don’t live in this world or any one I’m familar with.

     

    You certainly describe me here, Bei1052.  Unlike me, you apparently live in some fairyland where the statement that a quarter-size blob of undifferentiated cells is a human being is not ridiculous on its face.  If you want to argue that a fetus is the moral equivalent of a human being, and its rights supersede, or at least compete with, those of the pregnant woman, well, I disagree, but at least that is a defensible position.

     

  • bei1052

    No, NOT common sense Bei1052. Common sense would be to get the hell out of the abusive relationship, get an abortion if pregnant, and not have any ties to an abusive man. Why would she want to be a single mom? Why would she want to have to fight him in court for child custody? It’s VERY expensive to raise a child as a single person. Not to mention trying to get child support from an abusive man. Being that restraining orders don’t work, court orders are not followed or are ignored — I would NEVER expect a woman to continue a pregnancy as she is trying to leave an abusive situation. That is the complete opposite of common sense.

     

    Funny. So why do the majority of women not abort their children borne from abusive relationships (indeed, iirc, the majority of rape victims don’t even abort their pregnancies), why do many woman take their abusive SO’s to courts, why have the percentage of single mothers gone up over the years if it’s so hard, and pretty much why do the majority of women not do what you somehow think is common sense? Could it be that, perhaps, what you deem as common sense isn’t? Have you ever stopped to think that maybe– just maybe– you’re outside of mainstream opinion?

     

    …No. That couldn’t be the case. Like, at all.

     

    Basically, your argument boils down to killing a child for something totally unrelated to that child, which is nonsensical. Indeed, what you *should* be doing is advocating for better laws, but that would actually address the problem and, apparently, that kind of stuff is frowned upon.

  • bei1052

    You certainly describe me here, Bei1052.  Unlike me, you apparently live in some fairyland where the statement that a quarter-size blob of undifferentiated cells is a human being is not ridiculous on its face.  If you want to argue that a fetus is the moral equivalent of a human being, and its rights supersede, or at least compete with, those of the pregnant woman, well, I disagree, but at least that is a defensible position.

     

    A fetus is a human being. If it’s not, then what is it? It’s no skin off my nose if you don’t like science. It’s kind of hard to call someone else’s position indefensible when you start off with a statement that is, on its face, incorrect.

  • beenthere72

    what is disturbing me just as much as bei’s insistence that it’s easy for a woman to leave an abusive relationship and still have the man’s baby while seemingly be able to afford to support herself and said child, fight him for custody in the courts, and outright escape his wrath is the fact that he mentions ‘funny’ so many times that he finds this conversation, or situation, out right humorous.  

     

    and to bei, what the heck is this supposed to mean:

     

    Yet they make excellent money mines. Well, moreso then women, anyway.

     

    i do say your true colors are showing, bei, making your “argument” ever less convincing.  

  • colleen

    Yet they make excellent money mines. Well, moreso then women, anyway.

    Well, no they usually don’t. Besides it’s difficult to get child support out of a man who would like to kill you and besides, the visitation and co-parenting is so difficult when one is forced to factor in guys who tend to “tell you how they feel” with displays of emotional, physical and/or sexual abuse. Like I said, rapists and abusive men in general make shitty fathers, husbands and boyfriends. I feel almost certain that other people have mentioned this to you.

    Not bragging openly. Telling you how I felt towards her

    Bragging openly. You weren’t “telling me how you felt”, you were telling us what you wanted to do and what you wanted to do was kick a woman in the belly because you disliked her position on abortion.

     

    please show me where I said that male responsibility is optional

    Despite the fact that you spend inordinate amounts of time disparaging women who aren’t willing to gestate every zygote you mention male responsibility so seldom that we have no idea what you imagine that responsibility to be (besides, presumably, not wearing condoms). You even manage to sound whiny and annoyed about financial support for the children you may have fathered upon some unfortunate woman. As far as I can tell your notion of masculine ‘responsibility’ is to constantly berate, insult and belittle women who don’t live in a manner you approve of while publicly fantasizing about kicking us in the belly.

     

    Relatively few people care about modern feminism

    I’m sure that is true amoungst your friends.

    It’s stupid and can be summed up entirely as the support for abortion.

    Certainly reproductive rights are important for women and just as certainly feminism isn’t limited to advocacy for reproductive rights. Perhaps if you kept up with “stuff like that” you wouldn’t be such a waste of time.

     

    And as to the anti-poverty thing,

    Yes, everyone can tell how passionate you are in your advocacy.

     

     

  • crowepps

    “PHILIPSBURG – Catholic Church Priest Manuel Antao’s statement that women should not leave their husbands because of a little slap has enraged members of his congregation, who believe the man of the cloth is promoting domestic violence.”

     

    http://sxmprivateeye.com/node/17060

     

    Unfortunately, says Keffer, most people in the pews and even many priests aren’t familiar with the Bishops’ pastoral letter and don’t know the church’s position on the subject.

     

    “The feedback we get from many women is that when they tried to talk about domestic violence with their priest, they were often told that marriage is for better or worse, and they just have to stick it out,” says Keffer. “But that’s not at all what the Bishops’ statement says.”

     

    http://www.divinity.duke.edu/programs/spe/articles/200710/light.html

     

    One mid-1980s survey of 5,700 pastors found that 26 percent of pastors ordinarily would tell a woman being abused that she should continue to submit and to “trust that God would honor her action by either stopping the abuse or giving her the strength to endure it” and that 71 percent of pastors would never advise a battered wife to leave her husband or separate because of abuse. footnoted as: Alsdurf, James and Alsdurf, Phyllis, Battered into Submission, Wipf and Stock, 1998, as cited in Tracy, Steven, “Headship with a Heart: How biblical patriarchy actually prevents abuse”, Christianity Today, February 2003, accessed January 24, 2007

     

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christianity_and_domestic_violence#Christian_theology_and_counseling_abuse_victims

     

    And if domestic violence is such a priority for the Church, why did Pope John Paul II beatify Elizabeth Canori Mora, a beaten, abused woman who had been subjected to both physical and psychological violence at the hands of her errant husband, for her “absolute fidelity” to the sacrament of marriage?

     

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/angela-bonavoglia/the-catholic-church-abusi_b_531184.html?page=2&show_comment_id=44378081#comment_44378081

     

    Some participants said that many priests advise women victims to be resigned to, bear and forgive their violent husbands so as to protect their family. Sister Nga is skeptical, saying that such attitudes “are suitable for Christian values but will encourage husbands’ violence.” Some priests admitted to UCA News that they only advised victims of violence to suffer and forgive their spouses since Canon law does not allow them to divorce. In the past they never thought of giving psychological healing and life skills to people suffering domestic violence, they said.

     

    http://www.ucanews.com/2009/05/21/pepetrators-and-victims-of-domestic-violence-both-need-help/

     

  • bei1052

    what is disturbing me just as much as bei’s insistence that it’s easy for a woman to leave an abusive relationship and still have the man’s baby while seemingly be able to afford to support herself and said child, fight him for custody in the courts, and outright escape his wrath is the fact that he mentions ‘funny’ so many times that he finds this conversation, or situation, out right humorous. 

     

    It’s a good thing I didn’t say it was easy. What I did say, however, is that the child shouldn’t be killed because of it. Killing someone else to make your life easier is downright appalling, and it’s so to the majority of Americans. You see, if you were to poll the majority of Americans and ask whether or not abortion should be permitted in the cases where the woman is without an abusive SO or is having relationship problems, you’d find that support for abortion in such cases is downright abysmal. But that doesn’t really matter or anything.

     

    and to bei, what the heck is this supposed to mean:

     

    i do say your true colors are showing, bei, making your “argument” ever less convincing. 

     

    It means that a greater percentage of men pay up when ordered to pay child support then do women, that’s what.

  • bei1052

    Well, now I know. See? Was it so hard to post sources?

  • bei1052

    Well, no they usually don’t. Besides it’s difficult to get child support out of a man who would like to kill you and besides, the visitation and co-parenting is so difficult when one is forced to factor in guys who tend to “tell you how they feel” with displays of emotional, physical and/or sexual abuse. Like I said, rapists and abusive men in general make shitty fathers, husbands and boyfriends. I feel almost certain that other people have mentioned this to you.

     

    Moreso then women? Why, yes, they do. I already said this.

     

    Anyway, you’re still going on about abusive men which, while fascinating and all, doesn’t explain nor justify killing a child. You see, if laws are set up in a way which make it easy for someone who is abusive to abuse his ex via the child, then you *change the law* (I said this already once, didn’t I?). Arguing that a woman should be able to kill her child to “escape” the man is so ridiculous on its face, as it ignores the *actual* problem by projecting the consequences onto another.

     

    Bragging openly. You weren’t “telling me how you felt”, you were telling us what you wanted to do and what you wanted to do was kick a woman in the belly because you disliked her position on abortion.

     

    No, I said I wanted to kick the girl who was using abortion as a form of birth control and bragging about it in the uterus, not every women I disagreed with. And, hell, I’m fairly sure I wasn’t the only one. But she was from Canada, so maybe I shouldn’t be surprised (Or was it California? lol. I’ve forgotten now).

     

    Despite the fact that you spend inordinate amounts of time disparaging women who aren’t willing to gestate every zygote you mention male responsibility so seldom that we have no idea what you imagine that responsibility to be (besides, presumably, not wearing condoms).

     

    I spend slightly less time disparaging women who aren’t willing to gestate every zygote I meant then you do going on about feminism this, patriarchy that, and how much I apparently hate women. Actually, I spend a lot less time disparaging women then you do that.

     

    You even manage to sound whiny and annoyed about financial support for the children you may have fathered upon some unfortunate woman

     

    Oh, really? You’re going to have to refresh my memory on this one.

     

    As far as I can tell your notion of masculine ‘responsibility’ is to constantly berate, insult and belittle women who don’t live in a manner you approve of while publicly fantasizing about kicking us in the belly.

     

    I think you really should try harder then, as that’s more-or-less fanciful dreaming on your part.

     

    …And the uterus is not the belly, fyi :P

     

    I’m sure that is true amoungst your friends.

     

    No, actually, it’s true in general.

     

    Certainly reproductive rights are important for women and just as certainly feminism isn’t limited to advocacy for reproductive rights.

     

    Limited to in actuality? No. Limited to by fact of the matter? Yes. There’s no better way to generate the ire of most mainstream feminist groups then speaking out on abortion. Everything else, they can turn a blind eye to.

     

    Perhaps if you kept up with “stuff like that” you wouldn’t be such a waste of time.

     

    Didn’t know I didn’t. That’s news to me.

     

    Yes, everyone can tell how passionate you are in your advocacy.

     

    My advocacy is limited to the odd can food drive here and there or time spent at the food kitchen. It’s not really high up on my list.

  • invalid-0

    Unlike me, you apparently live in some fairyland where the statement that a quarter-size blob of undifferentiated cells is a human being is not ridiculous on its face.  If you want to argue that a fetus is the moral equivalent of a human being, and its rights supersede, or at least compete with, those of the pregnant woman, well, I disagree, but at least that is a defensible position.

    Gordon, an embryo/fetus IS a human being by definition.  Just as much as a toddler, teenager or senior.  They are stages of a human’s life.  You, believe it or not, were once an embryo.

    Moral equivalent?  What the hell is that?  You believe that whether or not I treat someone like a human being can be based upon my own personal moral values?  I thought we stopped arguing that some humans weren’t equal to others years ago.

  • crowepps

    First and foremost, please join us in reality. I’ve never known any priest tell someone that they should stay with someone who abuses them.

    So you agree that my comment did indeed reflect reality?  That on this particular subject your knowledge fell short?  That the fact you don’t know something isn’t evidence it isn’t true?

    And I’m still calling BS on the aforementioned lol, ‘cuz that doesn’t even sound right.

    So you agree it’s not BS?  That the fact it didn’t sound right to you isn’t evidence that it isn’t true?

  • bei1052

    So you agree that my comment did indeed reflect reality?  That on this particular subject your knowledge fell short?  That the fact you don’t know something isn’t evidence it isn’t true?

     

    Yup, yup and yup.

     

    So you agree it’s not BS?  That the fact it didn’t sound right to you isn’t evidence that it isn’t true?

     

    Yup and yup.

  • squirrely-girl

    It’s okay arex – (like MANY people) Gordon just doesn’t understand why you would think a mass of cells INSIDE somebody is the same as a living, breathing, sentient human being. 

     

    Yes, I will TOTALLY agree with you that ZBEFs are human – women aren’t gestating other species (hopefully). And yes, every living person was once an embryo… but not every embryo becomes a person. Believe it or not, this IS logical reasoning. Thinking zygotes and embryos (I’ll admit I’m torn on late term pregnancies) are “full” human beings is like thinking an acorn is an oak tree. To live in a fantasy world where an early pregnancy is afforded the SAME rights or MORE rights than a living, breathing, autonomous being is… well… lacking in reasoning ability. 

    You say we stopped arguing that some humans weren’t equal to others years ago but your point about the different stages of a human’s life is inherently flawed. We DO argue that people aren’t equal to others based on age and cognitive development. Even toddlers, teenagers and seniors have different rights under the law. Toddlers and teenagers can’t vote, drive, drink, make legal decisions, etc. And, generally speaking, other people (adults and parents) make decisions for them because they lack the cognitive ability to make fully informed decisions for themselves. Seniors and cognitively impaired individuals can be declared incompetent and have decisions made for them as well. Even if you theoretically wanted to give “rights” to ZBEFs the law would necessarily have to recognize that this being is incapable of decision making in ANY sense thus leaving decisions and choices to the person whose body it is currently inhabiting. 


    Seriously, the inability to convince people that early pregnancies are the moral/legal/whatever equivalent of a living, breathing person is one of the biggest reasons the anti-choice movement has focused so rabidly on late-term abortions. Even though these groups could give two shits about whether the procedure is medically or ethically necessary, it’s easier to make people feel bad when it starts to “look” human and move around a bit. 

  • crowepps

    It is possible that on other subjects where you do not know the facts that other people might just possibly know a reality which you have not yet happened to run across, and that being so, it would be a good idea to do a little RESEARCH before asserting that they don’t know what they’re talking about.

  • crowepps

    Seniors and cognitively impaired individuals can be declared incompetent and have decisions made for them as well.

    Their guardians can even, if the absence of a living will or other end of life document, decide to put a “do not resuscitate” order on their chart, which could possibly end their life sooner than if expensive extraordinary measures continued, and everybody seems to be okay with that. Unless, of course, they’re in a Catholic hospital.

     

    I wonder, if the family specifically rejects extraordinary measures, and the hospital insists it has a moral obligation to ignore their wishes and provide care they don’t want, can the hospital possibly CHARGE them for that? I would think such unwanted care would have to be provided for free, myself. Why should the family be stuck paying for something they specifically said they did NOT want?

  • rebellious-grrl

    Funny. So why do the majority of women not abort their children borne from abusive relationships (indeed, iirc, the majority of rape victims don’t even abort their pregnancies), why do many woman take their abusive SO’s to courts, why have the percentage of single mothers gone up over the years if it’s so hard, and pretty much why do the majority of women not do what you somehow think is common sense?

    And were are your sources for this? Sounds like fiction to me, especially the part about “The majority of rape victims don’t even abort their pregnancies” Just the insinuation that a women who is raped should or would prefer to remain pregnant after a violent attack is sickening.

    Indeed, what you *should* be doing is advocating for better laws, but that would actually address the problem and, apparently, that kind of stuff is frowned upon.

    Bei1052, what you *should* do is quit telling women and other people what to do with their lives/bodies etc. You’ve proved Amanda’s point of “get a life” Stay the hell out of mine.

  • cmarie

    Unfortunately I haven’t seen the film myself so I feel uncomfortable commenting on the article but thought I would point out two examples Amanda mentions.  The man you mention (protesting) isn’t “simmering with rage because the Dr goes home at night to hug his small children and wife”, he’s simmering with rage because of the abortions the Dr performs during the day.  I know you disagree with his logic but surely you understand that its the abortions that are controversial.  Also just because a woman entering a crisis pregnancy clinic was offered a teddy bear doesn’t mean she wasn’t offered anything else.  Please just try to understand.  Imagine YOU BELIEVE murder is being committed in a building, legally.  Wouldn’t protest and prevention be a priority to you? Certainly concern wouldn’t mean you have no other life.  You don’t believe a first trimester fetus is a human being and the protesters do.  That’s where you disagree.  They don’t protest because they have no lives.   They protest because they disagree with you on this one very specific fact.  You would get further with your arguement if you focused on the fact yourself.  Let me give you an example.  I used to oppose gay marriage.  I thought that civil unions should be adequate.  My mind was changed by intelligent debate with someone who was willing to focus on the very specific arguements I brought up.  If he had just run around screaming names at me like a ten year old my mind would never have been changed,  at least not by that person.  This is clearly an issue vitally important to you.  You have a platform here so use it.  Don’t just preach to the choir and try to make fun of those who disagree with you.  I don’t even agree with you but I hate to see anyone with such an opportunity to present an arguement blow it week after week with random name calling.  I don’t consider myself pro life (pro lifers are against all abortions unless the mother’s life is in danger) but I am anti abortion.  Take on a challenge.  Change my mind.  Focus on the trimester where we all seem to disagree. 

  • beenthere72

    You most certainly suggested that a woman could easily leave an abusive relationship.    I’m not the only one that’s pointed that out.   

     

    If you polled Americans using your language, of course they would be against abortion – because it’s misleading, but if you polled Americans using actual facts about the viability of a zygote in early pregnancy, then the results would be overwhelmingly different.    And don’t forget to include the East and West coasts in your poll and not just conservative middle America.  

     

    And regarding child support?   By your tone, it appears you don’t agree with it?    If the mother is raising the child, should the father not be partially financially responsible?  I know many fathers that have little to do with their children and owe years and years of back support.     It’s sad and pathetic.   If you play, you ought to pay, or you ought to be forced to have a vasectomy.   (hey, now *that* would be a fair law if the right to abortion were ever overturned)    If your argument is that more men are forced to pay than women, that’s because more men only want to be part-time parents, if at all, than women do.  

     

    Let’s look up some facts:

     

    Over $106 billion is owed to custodial parents nationwide.”

    Each year only about 7% of the total unpaid child support is actually collected.”

    According to the US Census Bureau, approximately 25% of custodial parents who are not receiving the child support to which they are entitled live below the poverty line.”

    The purpose of child support is to ensure that the custodial parent and non-custodial parent share the financial responsibility of raising a child or children.”

     

    http://www.supportkids.com/child-support-help/facts

     


  • bei1052

    Thinking zygotes and embryos (I’ll admit I’m torn on late term pregnancies) are “full” human beings is like thinking an acorn is an oak tree.

     

    Why do pro-choicers constantly use this argument? You’re comparing a *stage of development* (acorn to tree) to species (the unborn to human beings). It’s like arguing that a newborn isn’t a human being because it’s not an adult. It’s rather disingenuous, and an affront to science.

     

    Seriously, the inability to convince people that early pregnancies are the moral/legal/whatever equivalent of a living, breathing person is one of the biggest reasons the anti-choice movement has focused so rabidly on late-term abortions.

     

    No, the reason they focus on late-term abortions is because the courts won’t allow them to restrict abortions before the second trimester.

     

    And, for the record, we don’t argue that a newborn has less of a right to live then a toddler, or a toddler a less of a right to live then an infant, or an infant less of a right to live then an adolescent, a teenager, a young adult, an adult or someone at the end of their life. But this is precisely what you argue in regards to abortion. If you cannot recognize the difference between the right to not be killed and the right to, say, vote (a negative right vs. a positive political right), then I don’t know what to say to you.

  • bei1052

    It is possible that on other subjects where you do not know the facts that other people might just possibly know a reality which you have not yet happened to run across, and that being so, it would be a good idea to do a little RESEARCH before asserting that they don’t know what they’re talking about.

     

    You really are wanting to try hard with this, aren’t you?

  • crowepps

    A few minutes of research might save you from having to backtrack again in the future, although I admit it took a little longer to wade through all the “priest rapes parishioner during counseling” and “priest abuses mistress” links to find the ones regarding domestic violence commited by someone else.

  • crowepps

    And were are your sources for this? Sounds like fiction to me, especially the part about “The majority of rape victims don’t even abort their pregnancies” Just the insinuation that a women who is raped should or would prefer to remain pregnant after a violent attack is sickening.

    Accurate statistics are very difficult to track down, because there is so much bogus anecdotal stuff out there, but as best I can track down, more than half of women who become pregnant after rape do indeed complete the pregnancy.  There is no information that I know of which divides these cases into ‘pregnant after raped by husband’, ‘pregnant after raped by boyfriend’, ‘pregnancy discovered so far along abortion was difficult to obtain’ or even ‘parents/self adamently ProLife so abortion never considered’

     

    The fact that a majority of women do complete their pregnancies after rape does not, of course, mean that doing so is easy for them, or that other women who have different psychological reactions to rape need to do the same thing.  The thing that people seem to be having a hard time grasping is that women are DIFFERENT and do not all NEED or WANT the same things.

     

    The eons long attempts to construct an image of a perfect ‘ideal woman’ which all women should emulate have led not to women being held in high esteem but instead to all the real, actual human women being despised because none of them can (or could possibly) reach the goal of perfection.

  • invalid-0

    Even toddlers, teenagers and seniors have different rights under the law.

    I agree that a [ZBEF?] should not be able to drive or enter into a contract.  Yet none of those are inherent rights under the law – they are created by the state.  But the right to one’s own life?  To be treated as more than property?  No classification of human beings has to worry about that in this country other than the pre-birth human being.  

    Forgive me if I’m being presumptuous, but it sounds as if you agree that the “ZBEF” may be scientifically classified as a human being, but argue that it is a human being that does not possess the same rights that you and I enjoy (through no effort of our own!).  As best I can tell from what you put forward, this is because they are not “living, breathing, or sentient”.

    Living. I agree that human beings that are not alive have no claim to a right to life – that would be silly.  Are you suggesting that the fetus is not ‘living’?  Why are we arguing then over whether or not it can be intentionally killed?

    Breathing. I admit that at least at very early stages of pregnancy there is no respiratory function for the pre-birth humans.  But honestly, I see no reasonably logical connection between the ability to breathe and the possession of basic human rights. 

    Sentient.  Well here’s something – the pre-born are mostly not sentient, and I can understand the reasoning behind the distinction (I disagree with it, but I  can see where you’re coming from).  But are you truly prepared to apply “sentient” as the standard qualification for human rights?  Certainly there are many “born” humans that lack sentience, including newborns, the comatose and some disabled individuals – may they be killed by their caretakers who no longer wish to care for them?

  • crowepps

    No classification of human beings has to worry about that in this country other than the pre-birth human being.  

    And that’s because, pretty obviously, no other classification of human beings is 100% dependent on cannibalizing one particular human being’s body in order to sustain and grow themselves.  If the host human body is unwilling to continue doing that, and removes the placenta, then the fetus dies.  By the way, at that point  the fetus doesn’t actually ‘worry’ about anything.  The worrying is all being done by other adult human beings strangers to the host human body who are projecting their own insecurities about their own value onto the fetus.

    Certainly there are many “born” humans that lack sentience, including newborns, the comatose and some disabled individuals – may they be killed by their caretakers who no longer wish to care for them?

    It is argueable that newborns don’t have sentience.  The comatose and severely disabled are not dependent on a PARTICULAR caretaker, but can be passed along to anyone willing to pay the money and take the time to sustain them.  Neither requires the use of one particular other person’s actual organs to sustain themselves.  Certainly the caretakers are legally allowed to decide that a “do not resuscitate” order is appropriate, in which case the patient will be allowed to die of causes which in a healthier person could be alleviated.  Alzheimer’s patients with DNR’s sometimes die of infections which would be successfully treated in a patient with a hope of recovery.

  • bei1052

    You most certainly suggested that a woman could easily leave an abusive relationship.    I’m not the only one that’s pointed that out.

     

    If you got it’s easy to leave an abusive relationship from she should leave an abusive relationship, then I dunno’ what to say to you. I thoroughly dislike red herrings. I really do.

     

    If you polled Americans using your language, of course they would be against abortion – because it’s misleading, but if you polled Americans using actual facts about the viability of a zygote in early pregnancy, then the results would be overwhelmingly different.    And don’t forget to include the East and West coasts in your poll and not just conservative middle America. 

     

    Yes, because the majority of Americans don’t know that a fetus isn’t viable until the third trimester.

     

    …Errr, wait. Yes, they do. There’s nothing “misleading” about asking people under what circumstances abortion should be legal/illegal. You’ll get a bit of discrepency based on geographic area, but the overall trend is that a majority of Americans would keep abortion legal in the case of incest, rape, maternal health and severe fetal defects while banning the rest. I’ve gone over this time and time again, and have presented numerous polls and writings on this issue. I really don’t know why I have to keep going over it. This has been known for the latter part of 40’ish years.

     

    And regarding child support?   By your tone, it appears you don’t agree with it?    If the mother is raising the child, should the father not be partially financially responsible?  I know many fathers that have little to do with their children and owe years and years of back support.     It’s sad and pathetic.   If you play, you ought to pay, or you ought to be forced to have a vasectomy.   (hey, now *that* would be a fair law if the right to abortion were ever overturned)    If your argument is that more men are forced to pay than women, that’s because more men only want to be part-time parents, if at all, than women do. 

     

    I have nothing against child support laws. Just pointing out the fact that women are more likely to skip out on them then are men.

     

    Also, we should force men to have a vasectomy when we force women to have a tubal ligation. That would fair.

  • bei1052

    You know, I’m actually really being nice right now, and not going digging for stuff you said which was wrong and proven wrong, only to have you flatly ignore it and run off. Of course, I don’t want to do that, ‘cuz it’s pointless. Just making sure you understand this, just for future reference.

     

    Also, I didn’t backtrack. I admitted I was wrong, which is more then I can say for some other people *hint hint, wink wink*.

  • invalid-0

    So, your thesis essentially reduces to: Biological dependency on another human being is a basis for removal of the right to live.

    Perhaps I can clarify further – you believe that one particular person (the mother) has the exclusive right to terminate the life.  In other words, if an abusive boyfriend kicks a pregnant woman in the womb, he may be held guilty of a murder?  In all, under what circumstances do we require Person A to provide life support to Person B?

    Is this accurate?

  • invalid-0

    Quick unrelated question: do you believe in forcing unwilling fathers to pay child support for children that the woman [unilaterally] decided to carry to term?

  • crowepps

    In my personal opinion, if the woman assured the man that she was sterile, or that her birth control was foolproof, and if BECAUSE he was relying on her assurance he didn’t use his own birth control method, then personally I would say he shouldn’t have to pay.  If, on the other hand, he did not use a birth control method because he never does or because he just took it for granted protection wasn’t his problem, then in my opinion that’s his negligence and he should have to pay.

     

    Being really clear, I do understand that’s not the state of the law at the present time, which is focused more on making sure society in general doesn’t have to support his kids.

  • crowepps

    So, your thesis essentially reduces to: Biological dependency on another human being is a basis for removal of the right to live.

    I would state that in the reverse – a human being has the right to cease supplying the biology on which another human being is depending.  If that causes them to die, we all die eventually.

    In all, under what circumstances do we require Person A to provide life support to Person B?

    So far as I am aware, there is no other circumstance outside of pregnancy where anyone ever is required to provide biological life support to another person.  Organ donation is never required even of biological parents.  Blood donation is never required even of biological parents.  On what basis does the ZBEF alone uniquely have this ‘special right’?  Why is this particular ZBEF entitled to preference over the ZBEF that could alternatively be created in six weeks or six months or six years?

  • crowepps

    You know, I’m actually really being nice right now

    I’m sure you could be much more snotty, dismissive and sarcastic than you are now, although you’re managing quite well.

    not going digging for stuff you said which was wrong and proven wrong

    Actually if I state something that is incorrect, I would much prefer that you point it out to me so that I don’t continue to state incorrectly in the future.

  • squirrely-girl


    Why do pro-choicers constantly use this argument? You’re comparing a *stage of development* (acorn to tree) to species (the unborn to human beings). It’s like arguing that a newborn isn’t a human being because it’s not an adult. It’s rather disingenuous, and an affront to science.

    Please reread my comments – I didn’t say ZBEFs weren’t human beings… I said they weren’t FULL human beings. And I use that example because both ARE referring to “stages of development” where zygote/embryo = nut, infant = sampling, adult = tree. Trees and babies don’t just magically appear out of thin air… there are stages in that development and those stages ARE important to distinguish among. That assertion is neither disingenuous or an affront to science. Any scientific study of development would agree with the basic assertion that humans possess different qualities and abilities at different points in their development. I would suggest that this is more an affront on your opinions and perspectives than science. 

    No, the reason they focus on late-term abortions is because the courts won’t allow them to restrict abortions before the second trimester.

    I get what you’re saying here and I think my point was a bit unclear. Yes, they focus their greatest LEGISLATIVE energies toward late-term procedures due to prior court rulings, but I’m referring to how they tout the “abortions on demand up until delivery” farce and run around with signs depicting late-term pregnancies while shouting/”sidewalk counseling” outside of clinics that DO NOT provide late-term procedures. I guess I’ve always just been curious that, if an overwhelming majority of abortions are being performed within the first trimester, why aren’t they trying to stop THESE by waving signs with 6-11 week embryos depicted? Why are they picketing outside of clinics that don’t perform late-term services?

    If you cannot recognize the difference between the right to not be killed and the right to, say, vote (a negative right vs. a positive political right), then I don’t know what to say to you.

    To be “killed” you have to be “alive” first. I think our fundamental difference in ideology is that you think this “being” possess the same “alive” status as an infant, toddler, adolescent, etc. I don’t. I don’t believe for even a millisecond that an embryo has ANY sense of “being” let alone a sense of “being” that would override or supersede the woman’s rights or choices. I just don’t. I liken this (somewhat) to DNRs, living wills, or “pulling the plug” on a person in a permanent vegetative state (no higher order brain functioning). <– major difference being that an embryo never even had awareness for even a moment.

     

    If you cannot recognize the rights of a living, breathing, sentient human being to decide whether to let another developing being to commandeer her body for 9 months PARTICULARLY when most of these “choices” are being made before the developing being has ANY awareness, feeling, etc… then I don’t know what to say to you.

     

    Just to be clear Bei1052 – I’ll never pretend that abortion is an AWESOME choice that we should all be happy about and throw parties for. But viewed in relationship to the woman’s rights and bodily autonomy and the potential life of the child… sometimes it IS the lesser of the evils. 

  • squirrely-girl

    …that her birth control was foolproof, and if BECAUSE he was relying on her assurance he didn’t use his own birth control method…

     

    I would argue that we all know that NO method of birth control is foolproof hence the big reason professionals suggest using multiple methods, thus wholly negating this potential argument. Also, relying on the “assurances” of somebody else is very rarely an acceptable legal defense in the event of “negative outcomes.” For example, if somebody dies during the commission of a felony, you’re on the hook for murder even if YOU didn’t kill them. Bank robbery drivers are often found as culpable as the people in the building. If you receive stolen property, despite the “assurances” of the person giving/selling it to you, YOU suffer the consequences. If your less than reputable accountant gets you in trouble with the IRS, YOU still have consequences. Hell, if you’re driving somebody’s car and their tags are expired, YOU get the ticket, not the owner of the car. 

     

    To be clear, I think it would be super awesome if every pregnancy was both planned and wanted by both of the people involved. <–yay for utopia! But we all know this isn’t the case. In the cases of unplanned pregnancies where men don’t “want to be fathers” there are several possible outcomes: 1) he “lucks out” and she aborts, 2) he “lucks out” and she miscarries, 3) he “lucks out” and she decides to pursue adoption, or 4) he gets “screwed” and she decides to carry to term. While this may be earth shattering for the man in question (I know it’s so HORRIBLE to be confronted with situations that don’t go the way we want them to go) but sadly that’s the way of it. Life isn’t always fair. <– let me be clear that I’m REALLY not trying to be “dismissive” of the situation as I’m CERTAIN from personal and professional experiences that exceptions to this scenario exist. But it’s the proverbial Catch-22 – he doesn’t have a right to exert his will over the woman’s body and once the child is born he doesn’t have a “right” to declare his financial preferences to be more important than a living, breathing, sentient human being HE helped create. Wallet =/= uterus. 

     

    Do I think there should be “exceptions” to the current system of child support. ABSOLUTELY! I think the current system is horribly flawed and even discriminatory on a number of levels. But I think these “exceptions” would need to be in writing PRIOR to engaging in sexual activity otherwise the exception comes across as reneging or “buyer’s remorse.” But alas, this IS a separate debate.

  • crowepps

    Actually, I stated that exception based on a case I personally know about where the woman decided (her words) that a guy had “good genes” and would make “a beautiful baby”.  During their affair, she assured him that she was using an IUD, as a I recollect, when she was doing nothing of the sort.  She was pretty open to me about deliberately lying to him about using birth control because she wanted to get pregnant.  I thought that was outrageous behavior and a total betrayal.  In addition, although she listed him on the birth certificate and welfare went after him for child support to repay her state-funded medical costs for pregnancy and delivery, she threw a major fit about his wanting to be involved with the child, asserting that she didn’t want anything from him and he had no right to interfere with ‘her’ family.  I doubt this happens very often, but in that particular case, based entirely on her being open about her actions, I really think the guy was shafted.

     

    That said, I don’t have any sympathy for guys who don’t use their own form of birth control and assume that somehow someone somewhere will do something so that pregnancy doesn’t happen.

  • colleen

    Do I think there should be “exceptions” to the current system of child support. ABSOLUTELY! I think the current system is horribly flawed and even discriminatory on a number of levels.

    40% of the births in the country are children born OOW. The divorce rate is, what? 50%?
    Of the children born OOW only a tiny portion has court ordered child support and 40% of court ordered child support granted in a divorce settlement goes unpaid. Thus one in 5 children in this country lives in a household at or below poverty level.
    The thing that intrigues me is that when we have strict laws about child support and when those laws are strictly enforced there is ALWAYS a dip in the number of children born OOW.
    It’s like magic.
    While I have no difficulty with women having abortions I have a great deal of difficulty with millions of actual breathing children living at or below poverty and an equally difficult time with taxpayers being forced to subsidize the lifestyle of young men who sometimes neglect to use a condom. It seems to me that the people being discriminated against are the single mothers and, even more, the born and breathing children. These aren’t issues that religious conservatives or the ‘pro-life’ movement ever discuss or address unless it’s to winge about the unfairness of being responsible for the children men have been at least 50% responsible for conceiving. It seems to me that men who feel strongly about this form of “discrimination” would be doing their best to develop a more effective form of contraception than condoms or vasectomies.

    The legal abortion=no child support argument presents a false dilemma. the money is not paying the custodial parent for his/hard work raising the children or for the enormous psysical contribution involved in gestating a child. it helps to pay for basic necessities (food, shelter) for the child. Heck, ‘fathers’ aren’t even required to pay the medical expenses. Taxpayers pick up most of that tab.

    If we want to be fair and have male responsibility be optional in human reproductive arrangements then we shouldn’t be paying men more than women in the workplace and/or we should have a robust welfare program targeting single parents and their children. As things are now men can (and sometimes do) father 30 or 40 children at no expense to themselves and great expense to the women involved, the children and society at large. Indeed I once took a class with a 35 year old former truck driver who openly bragged about having fathered 35 children with 5 women in different states.

  • crowepps

    The legal abortion=no child support argument presents a false dilemma.

    It presents a false dilemma on its face, since the aborted fetus doesn’t GET child support.  Arguing that women who complete their pregnancies should be punished economically and the men who fathered the children should be off the hook because an entirely DIFFERENT group of women aborted their pregnancies and let OTHER men off the hook makes no sense at all.

     

    If men don’t want to support children, then their responsibility at a minimum is to be sure that they have sex with women who also don’t want children.  A couple of minutes of conversation proactively clearing that up shouldn’t delay things too much.  Using their own form of birth control would keep ‘the power’ they’re so concerned about to themselves.

     

    And, yeah, our society as a whole has no problem condemning children to an impoverished, minimal lifestyle with a dismal future, so it’s a little hard to believe our society as a whole is really ProChild.

  • squirrely-girl

    Crowepps touched on a few points that I’m completely in agreement with namely the ability of newborns to be passed off to other caregivers, DNR/life support, etc. so I’ll just cover a couple of specific points you addressed to me. 

    But the right to one’s own life?

    The biggest problem with giving presumptive rights to ZBEFs (besides violating the rights of the woman) is that pro-lifers like to ASSUME that each of these ZBEFs would inherently desire to live. We don’t make that assumption for people who are already living (see: suicide in general) and I don’t think we get to make that assumption for ZBEFs. Suspending reality for a moment, imagine if we could somehow ask a ZBEF if they want to be born while presenting them with their “likely future life.” <– In other words, true informed consent.  While I agree that ZBEFs who would be born into financially stable, first world countries, with supportive parents would likely say “yes,” I think there are plenty of situations that might elicit a “no.” For example, if a ZBEF knew from the start that they would be born into severe poverty, violent and/or abusive situations, would have zero opportunity at happiness or success, have their very existence resented, or would suffer incredibly due to congenital defects… well, I think some of these ZBEFs might just say “no.”

     

    At one time I worked with children and adolescents in state’s custody, primarily juvenile sex offenders and drug offenders, and seeing first hand the lives some of these children had suffered through was beyond humbling and eye-opening. We, as a society, FAIL HORRIBLY at protecting and providing for these “throw away” children. As callous as it may seem (on the surface) I think some children have a right to not be born in the first place. The most heartbreaking experience I ever had, and one that I will honestly carry with me for the rest of my life, was listening to a 12 year old boy with who had spent most of his life thus far being bounced from one “home” to another after being removed from his mother’s “care” because of HORRIFIC sexual abuse at the hands of a number of her boyfriends and physical abuse and neglect by her, tell me, “She shoulda just got an abortion” and “I wish I was never born.” Before people start touting adoption as the cure for all woes, please realize this kid had been hoping to be adopted for YEARS but (not) surprisingly, very few people want to adopt an ethnic minority child with medical and behavioral issues stemming from a pregnancy that was poorly cared for/sabotaged and years of abuse. Only in “happy rainbow pony land” are all of the unplanned and unwanted pregnancies simply happening to white, educated, healthy young women who will otherwise properly care for their pregnancies just waiting to hand over that infant. When the majority of people adopting stop demanding or holding out for healthy, white, infants – I’ll start being less cynical about adoption as a “choice.”

    Are you suggesting that the fetus is not ‘living’?

    I’m suggesting that a fetus is only living because it’s living off of somebody else’s body. Having a child of my own, I loathe the term “parasite” to describe a pregnancy, but alas it is a scientifically accurate description. Just because it’s “living” doesn’t mean it has a “right” to do so off of somebody else’s body. 

    But honestly, I see no reasonably logical connection between the ability to breathe and the possession of basic human rights.

    I’m not really sure what you mean by this or if you’re just mistaken or mistyped. Your body NEEDS to breathe in order to survive. Not breathing = dying and/or not living. If a person isn’t breathing they’re reliant on another person to perform CPR or they’re hooked up to a artificial respirator. With regard to CPR/rescue breathing, it’s generally seen as voluntary on the part of the other person and the only people “required” to perform CPR are trained medical personnel… and exceptions DO exist to protect the life and health of the already breathing individual for compromised situations (lots of blood, unsafe locations/crime scenes, etc.). Speaking as a former Army field medic/EMT, in MASCAL situations triage SOP rates individuals with respiratory distress lower/more harshly/less “deserving” of assistance than most every other condition because of the sheer amount of effort required to sustain that person’s life. As depressing as it may be, there IS a hierarchy. 

    But are you truly prepared to apply “sentient” as the standard qualification for human rights? 

    For the most part, yes. I tend to view the unique and defining qualities of human beings, those which separate us from other species, as free will and CHOICE. One has to possess thought to exert their will and choice. The whole “I think therefore I am” concept. However, I DO see caveats in this position, which is why I also included living and breathing as qualifiers. I would also suggest that sentient already IS used as a qualification for some human rights. Right or wrong, some mentally incompetent people ARE sterilized and/or have medical decisions made without their consent or input. And, sadly, if a caretaker no longer wishes to care (i.e., can’t or won’t foot the bill) for an individual in a permanently vegetative state (comatose as a term is a bit simple and used to describe any number of conditions) MANY states will allow hospitals to “pull the plug.” Texas, for example, has a STELLAR track record on this issue. 

     

    Again, just so we’re clear here arex, I am not a “fan” of abortion. I’m not. In my “happy rainbow pony land” all pregnancies would be planned and wanted. Pregnancy complications, birth defects and conditions not compatible would life just wouldn’t exist and no woman would ever die in childbirth… thus there would be no need for abortion. :) I’m not a fan of abortion any more than I’m a fan of battlefield triage. Very rarely are these “ideal situations” and making tough decisions SUCKS… but somebody has to make them. I generally defer to the living, breathing, sentient person for whom the consequences or involvement are greatest. I can’t think of any more ethical way to do this. 

     

  • bei1052

    1.) The unborn do breathe. Only, instead of air, they breathe in amniotic fluid, so I’m not understanding the whole “breathing” contention. It’s a non-issue.

     

    2.) Sentience doesn’t mean anything. Are you saying that if I inject you with a buttload of anesthesia that you would somehow lose your rights because you’re not longer sentient?

     

    3.) And, most importantly, the unborn are already living.

  • colleen

    The unborn do breathe. Only, instead of air, they breathe in amniotic fluid, so I’m not understanding the whole “breathing” contention. It’s a non-issue.

    Look this stuff up and stop making a fool of yourself. ‘The unborn’ throughout the entire gestation period receive all their oxygen through the umbilical cord. In the third trimester they appear to ‘breathe’ because they’re sucking in amniotic fluid. They are not breathing in any real sense of the word.
    Just because you don’t understand something it does not necessarily follow that the thing you do not understand is a ‘non-issue’. It just means you’re poorly informed and ignorant.

  • bei1052

    Arguing that women who complete their pregnancies should be punished economically and the men who fathered the children should be off the hook because an entirely DIFFERENT group of women aborted their pregnancies and let OTHER men off the hook makes no sense at all.

     

    They wouldn’t be punished. After all, it would have been their choice to give birth knowing well the full consequences, right? And seeing as it would be her choice to remain pregnant and give birth, she should also bear the brunt of that responsibility if the man chooses he doesn’t want to bear any, right?

     

    To your consternation, there is no “false dilemma” here. Let’s assume we have points A, B and C, with those points being sex, pregnancy and the birth of the child, respectively, each with corresponding time periods of “choice”. A woman will only reach point C if she wants to reach point C. A man, on the other hand, will reach point C so long as the woman wants to reach point C. To somehow turn around and say, “Yeah, well, it’s not inequal ‘cuz at point C they’re both equal and will be held to the same standards!” ignores the fact that a woman reaches point C of her own will, and no “choice” she makes at point A will change this fact. A man, on the other hand, doesn’t have the same courtesy. Indeed, a man, by virtue of choosing to engage in sex at point A will reach point C regardless of what he wants. Your rationale for this? Because B is inherently inequal, and as men can’t get pregnant, then they shouldn’t get a choice in the pregnancy. However, this ignores the fact that not only does B come after A, where both the man and women are equal, but that even allowing the aforementioned to be true, that those same women aren’t just saying that he shouldn’t get a choice in pregnancy, but rather that he shouldn’t be allowed to decide what’s best for him even though this is the exact same things those same women base their arguments on. You cannot, on one hand, argue that a woman should be allowed to have an abortion because she can’t afford a child, while simultaneously argue that a man shouldn’t be allowed to opt out of caring for a child if he can’t afford it. It’s even worse when you try to rationalize the aforementioned away on the basis that the man not paying for the child is worse for the child then is killing it. It’s nonsensical, it doesn’t work, it’s hypocritical and it’s a glaring double-standard.

     

    Therefore, to make it equal we should either hold men to the same standard women are, in which case they can make the choice of whether or not to be a parent at point B, or we hold women to the same standard men are held to, in which case the decision to engage in sex at point A means that they’re agreeing to take care of that which arises from that decision. Of course, you’ll all cry foul if someone says that men should be held to the same standard as women as it’s not in the child’s best interest to do so (irony?), yet you’ll also cry foul at holding women to the same standard as men (claiming it’s inherently misogynistic, which would also mean that the current status quo is inherently misandristic (sp?)). I’d ask how that works, but it doesn’t, nor does it even provide any semblance of trying to work.

     

    It’s basically just making stuff up as you go along.

  • prochoiceferret

    And seeing as it would be her choice to remain pregnant and give birth, she should also bear the brunt of that responsibility if the man chooses he doesn’t want to bear any, right?

    Oh, boy, not another MRA.

     

    Sorry Bei, but if a child is born, both parents have to support it, either by being active parents, or paying child support. I know, paying child support isn’t fun, and it sure puts a crimp on a strip-club-and-beer-fueled lifestyle, but it’s a heck of a lot more fair than having the taxpayer pick up the tab.

    or we hold women to the same standard men are held to, in which case the decision to engage in sex at point A means that they’re agreeing to take care of that which arises from that decision.

    You really have some jealousy issues going with womens’ power to create new life, don’t you?

     

    Anyway, trying to argue against abortion by citing child-support laws is full of red herrings and not related to anything pro-choicers have typed out here. Your effort receives F, although you do get a C- in Comic Relief Skills.

  • colleen

    Oh, boy, not another MRA.

    A ‘pro-life’ MRA.

    When he talks about women he sounds so much like Rush Limbaugh.

  • bei1052

    Oh, boy, not another MRA.

     

    Sorry Bei, but if a child is born, both parents have to support it, either by being active parents, or paying child support. I know, paying child support isn’t fun, and it sure puts a crimp on a strip-club-and-beer-fueled lifestyle, but it’s a heck of a lot more fair than having the taxpayer pick up the tab.

     

    Oh, look. PCF and, unsurprisingly, it ignored a heck of a lot of what was typed, especially the part about how women won’t get the point where they have to pay child support unless they want to. Which was, actually, a pretty big issue.

     

    You really have some jealousy issues going with womens’ power to create new life, don’t you?

     

    I would only if women were sharks or the Virgin Mary.

     

    Anyway, trying to argue against abortion by citing child-support laws is full of red herrings and not related to anything pro-choicers have typed out here. Your effort receives F, although you do get a C- in Comic Relief Skills.

     

    Oh, look. How cute. As they say, imitation is the best form of flattery. But on to more relevant things.

     

    It’s, actually, not a red herring in the slightest, especially when you consider the fact that it wasn’t intended as an argument against abortion, but rather an argument in the way that either men should be held to the same standard as women, or women men, as the current system is entirely inequitable (sp?). You know, that equality thing that feminists care about? Well, supposedly and allegedly care about?

  • squirrely-girl

    1) If it makes you feel better I’ll let this one “pass” but even this “breathing” is the result of the woman’s body providing the amniotic fluid. Additionally, if you were to remove, intact and unharmed, an early term ZBEF from the uterus and disconnect it from the woman’s life support, this being would NOT magically starting “breathing” on it’s own. While it possesses the rudimentary anatomy, it is woefully lacking in the physiology necessary for actual conversion of oxygen. The primary developmental activities of the third trimester are weight gain and preparation of the lungs for breathing (development of surfactant). Without surfactant, lungs will not open and close on their own. One of the biggest problems for pre-term babies is the inability to breathe without medical assistance. 

     

    2) I think there are a great number of philosophers and scientists that would passionately disagree with you. I also think you’re either being purposefully contrary or you just don’t understand what the word means. I’ll assume ignorance. Sentience is the ability to feel or perceive. Sentience describes the ability to have subjective sensations or experience. This is distinct from other aspects of the mind and consciousness, such as creativity, intelligence, sapience, self-awareness, and intentionality (the ability to have thoughts that mean something or are “about” something). Sentience is a minimalistic way of defining ‘consciousness’, which is otherwise commonly used to collectively describe sentience plus other characteristics of the mind.

    In your scenario, a person injected with a “with a buttload of anesthesia” still had the ABILITY to perceive prior to the injection and anesthetized and unconscious people still have higher order brain activity (some even report dreaming). Your example is profoundly different than that of ZBEFs which, early in a pregnancy, DO NOT and NEVER DID have sentience. While neural connections continue to develop through childhood, THE ABSOLUTELY BARE-MINIMUM BRAIN WIRING NECESSARY FOR SENTIENCE IS NOT DEVELOPED AT THE POINT IN TIME WHEN THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY OF WOMEN ARE OBTAINING ABORTIONS. In other words, a mentally retarded gerbil has “more sentience” than a early-term ZBEF. I don’t particularly care if you don’t like this analogy but it is SCIENTIFIC FACT. 

    I’ll point out that I use sentience rather than other higher order brain activities because I see it as the minimal threshold – I’m not trying to hold a ZBEF to any higher standard than I would for any other being. But if you’re going to violate or deny the rights of person (in this case the woman) there needs to be SOME standard. I tend to lean toward Roe v. Wade and point of viability as a relatively fair standard/compromise. 

    3) I addressed this issue at length in a reply to arex if you care to read it. 

  • ahunt

    Purposefully contrary. Bei blows a lot of “philosophical” smoke around, but has yet to carry his convictions through to their logical conclusions.

  • bei1052

    So, you just corrected me by stating that the unborn breathe amniotic fluid, not air, when I just said that the uborn breathe in amniotic fluid not air? lol, really? Srsly now. If you’re going to try to nitpick, at least nitpick something which is an incorrect statement, as otherwise it’s just plain annoying.

  • prochoiceferret

    the part about how women won’t get the point where they have to pay child support unless they want to. Which was, actually, a pretty big issue.

    Yeah, MRAs hate that!

    an argument in the way that either men should be held to the same standard as women, or women men, as the current system is entirely inequitable (sp?). You know, that equality thing that feminists care about? Well, supposedly and allegedly care about?

    And we’re there! If there is a child, then both parents have to support it. If the dad does the single-parent thing, then the MOTHER has to pay child support! Ka-ching! MRAs don’t ever seem too keen on that option, however.

     

    Anyway, I’m so sorry that you were born with a penis instead of a uterus. Maybe, if you stop treating women like walking incubators whose bodies don’t belong to them, God will make you a woman in your next life—and then YOU will have the power to continue a pregnancy to term or not! (Plus, you’ll learn firsthand just how awesome it is to have a clitoris.)

  • ahunt

    Nitpick? Coming from YOU?

     

    Okay, the Tullamore Dew just came through my nose.  Thanks ever so much!

  • squirrely-girl

    But it’s so much more fun to assume ignorance :)

     

    And I might add that it IS a good exercise in crafting and sharing my thoughts and opinions with others. I think cmarie touched on this elsewhere, but I DO enjoy “debate” or whatever it is that we do here because it gives me the opportunity to see my arguments and beliefs from different angles and fine tune the presentation. So thank you all!

  • bei1052

    1.) Of course you’re going to let it pass, because I didn’t say anything wrong. Of course there’s a difference between breathing in amniotic fluid and breathing in air, which is why physiological changes occur almost immediately in the child after it’s born.

     

    2.) Science does not deal with sentience. It’s a philosophical construct.

     

    Anyway, before I begin, I have a simple question. Are insects conscious?

     

    As per what you wrote out, sentience describes the ability to have subjective sensations or experience (Thought it’s really the ability to feel or perceive subjectively). This can be taken to mean either “at that point in time” or “having the ability to do so at some point in time”. If it means the former, then your contention against my anesthesia example is invalid, for while someone may be able to perceive subjectively before they’ve been injected with anesthesia, they cannot perceive subjectively after they have been heavily sedated (Dreaming is a matter of consciousness, not sentience. Don’t confuse the two). Your logic would dictate that said individual is no longer sentient, for no longer do they feel. If it’s the latter, then you should oppose abortion unilaterally, for even though the unborn don’t have sentience right now, they will have sentience tomorrow, and the fact that they have the ability to be sentient is enough to give it the same basic protections as you would afford any other sentient being.

     

    Unfortunately, neither of these seem to be true, because you’re, in effect, arguing that it doesn’t matter whether or not you are sentient or whether or not you will be sentient, but rather whether or not you have been sentient in the past. You say that sentience is a minimal threshold, yet you argue that even if someone who is sentient falls below that threshold that they still have basic rights, which means that you’re not treating sentience as a basic threshold, but rather whether or not you achieved sentience in the past as a basic threshold. This doesn’t make much sense, especially when you consider the fact that there’s no fundamental difference between a 23-week-and-six-day-year-old non-sentient fetus who will become sentient tomorrow, and a twenty year old non-sentient male who has been sedated and won’t be sentient until tomorrow. They are both non-sentient and, following your initial logic, either both should have rights or neither should.

     

    Of course, we could play the “sliding-scale-of-sentience” game, but that would not only require you to be able to measure it, but then you’d have to define what an acceptable level of sentience is before someone is afforded rights. Neither of those are particularly easy to do, but I’m all ears.

     

    As it is, your standard is entirely self-serving, for first you say it’s about whether or not something is sentient, and then you backtrack and change that to whether or not something was sentient in the past. Why does that matter? I thought you cared about what something is, not what something was? Are you telling me that if, for some odd reason or another, the unborn became sentient briefly at the moment of conception, and then became non-sentient for the next six or so months, that you’d oppose abortion? I doubt it. You say that sentience is a minimal threshold for what? Consciousness? Well, it’s not, henceforth my insect question. Sentience is a minimal threshold for nothing. The only reason you use it is to define one subset of the population out of rights defined by another.

     

    It’s a common tactic used throughout history.

     

    3.) Yeah, I read it. And it reeks of an argument from moral autonomy (and personal opinion).

  • bei1052

    I’m sure you could be much more snotty, dismissive and sarcastic than you are now, although you’re managing quite well.

     

    Indeed, I could. But I’m in a good mood today :)

     

    Actually if I state something that is incorrect, I would much prefer that you point it out to me so that I don’t continue to state incorrectly in the future.

     

    Duly (sp?) noted.

  • invalid-0

    The correct answer is: If you contribute to the creation of the need for dependency, then you must provide assistance.  Pregnancy, then, is the one exception where someone who creates a dependency may terminate support.

  • invalid-0

    If men don’t want to support children, then their responsibility at a minimum is to be sure that they have sex with women who also don’t want children.

    You wouldn’t be imposing your own personal morality on other people here, would you?

  • colleen

    You wouldn’t be imposing your own personal morality on other people here, would you?

    The stubborn reluctance of ‘pro-life’ ‘men’ to admit to any responsibility at all in creating the 40% (and growing) OOW birthrate and it’s associated problems of poverty (but only for women and children) is really very telling. It’s as if, for conservative ‘men’, women procreate via parthenogenesis and should be punished for it.
    Why ANYONE should care about your useless notions of morality is beyond me.

  • prochoiceferret

    The correct answer is: If you contribute to the creation of the need for dependency, then you must provide assistance.

    Financial assistance, sure. Biological assistance, not so much—because people can’t be compelled to give that kind of support. (And you should be very happy about that if you value your kidneys.)

    Pregnancy, then, is the one exception where someone who creates a dependency may terminate support.

    Man, it’s like all the anti-choicers around here now want to have a uterus of their own! So was it really the ability to have an abortion that sold it for you, or just the whole multiple-orgasm thing?

  • crowepps

    Pregnancy, then, is the one exception where someone who creates a dependency may terminate support.

    No, this is not the only exception at all. A man with an extremely unusual bloodtype, who has a son with the same extremely unusual bloodtype, is under no legal obligation to give blood for that son. Nor is he legally obligated to donate a kidney or a piece of liver for that son.

     

    And going beyond biology, parents who spoil a child rotten and thereby contribute to them being unemployable as an adult are under no obligation to continue supporting them as adults.

  • crowepps

    I don’t think it’s a question of morality – more a question of warning others that sometimes there are unpleasant consequences for being STUPID.

  • invalid-0

    All this talk of having to live with consequences… if you don’t want to care for a child, don’t have sex?  You’re starting to sound like a pro-lifer, crow.

  • invalid-0

    I don’t think we get to make that assumption for ZBEFs

    Yes we do… sadly.

  • crowepps

    I said that if you don’t want to take responsibility for your own birth control AND don’t want to pay child support, you need to restrict your screwing around to the 50% of so of women who think abortion is acceptable backup birth control and leave the ProLife chicks alone.

  • harry834

    I believe that only an individual person has dominion over their body, meaning women are within their rights, morally or otherwise, to decide on their own whether or not they want their bodies to carry a child/fetus/zygote.

    I agree that wallet/finances does not equal uterus, but I do want to see more sympathy for a man who did the same accidental act as the woman. I’m not sure what this mean for law reform.

    More sympathy for a man, does not include men who try to control their women or blame them for the preganancies (at least blame them more than they are truly responsible. women can be stupid just like men).

    Also, pregnancy consumes more than just the uterus. The hormones, brain, physical mobility, physical freedom to move/enjoy life without fear of “hurting the baby”. Men don’t have to deal with this with their bodies.

    But I do believe non-controlling men who do want to do the right thing should not be treated like deadbeats simply for having a hard time adjusting. I don’t like words like “man up” and “suck it up”. He may not have to endure the woman’s body challenges. But he has to endure his own stuff. It may be less severe on the continuum than the woman’s body stuff. But if he’s wants to do what’s right, but is scared, then i feel he needs akind listener rather than a “man up”, “suck it up”, “she needs you to be strong” kind of lecture (which unfortunately may be how male responsibility gets preached in these cases).

    Not knowing further specifics, I see the woman and man as equally stupid/careless/whatever word you choose (I really hate the word “stupid”), in the conception of the child (which in this scenario the woman has chosen to keep, a choice that should be defended/not stigmatised by pro-choicers).

    Also, I don’t like women being accused of “trapping their man” just because they chose their pro-choice right to carry to term. We should all, including the men, support her choice to the best of our ability. Just know that even when a man is feminist-minded, when he wants to do what is right, when his body is still free, he still has issues of fear/uncertainty/ trying to hold on to SOMETHING that will stay unsacrificed in this process. He is not selfish. Both woman and man want to hold on to something(s) that will remain unsacrificed in this process. We need to help them.

     

    Personally, I hope the guy keeps his video game collection…to unwind after a day of carrying out adult/father responsibilities (but always hit “save” when your kid/mother-of-kid needs you)

  • harry834

    it really doesn’t need to be video games at the end of every day. I think more likely it will be once every couple of days or something.

    And of course, preg women/new moms like their games too.

  • harry834

    a “prochoice chick” might still want to carry to term. Each woman is different in the choice she might make. And she might not know until it happens. Besides, should men really try to extract that info of “would you abort or not?” while in the dating process? Sounds like men trying to pressure women.

  • harry834

    if this child-support issue is something feminists (at least the ones here) haven’t thought too much about? I don’t mean to indict anyone. I think each movement has enough to focus on, and can be justified in narrowing its focus. But perhaps an unintended consequence is that those in feminist circles may have unfamiliarity with men’s needs when they act as child support?

    None of this is a rebuttal of a woman’s right to autonomously control her own reproduction, and our social responsibility to defend/support that right.

  • squirrely-girl

    I’m one of those “pro-choice chicks” who happily carried to term. I’ve got an AWESOME son and although the pregnancy was TOTALLY unplanned (yay for hormonal birth control failure :/ ) I wouldn’t trade the experience for the whole world on a silver platter. That being said, I know that in my particular situation I was married, finishing up with grad school, and we had both sides of our family relatively close and eager to help out. It’s a far cry from some women’s experiences and thus I wholly consider myself to be pro-choice. I just don’t have a right to tell other women what to do with their bodies in situations like unplanned pregnancies. 

     

    As to discussions of abortion… I think people SHOULD be okay with having these conversations. At a minimum, the couple should be discussing birth control or contraception if they’re not trying to get pregnant and I don’t think it’s unreasonable for both sides to ask what the other would do if the birth control/contraception failed. That’s called maturity. People who aren’t able or willing to discussion contraception/birth control/potential parenting/abortion maturely with the person they’re having sex with probably shouldn’t be having sex. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Then again, that’s just my opinion :)

  • colleen

    Besides, should men really try to extract that info of “would you abort or not?”

    I don’t believe that you would have to “extract” a woman’s position on abortion  and certainly it would wise to know these sort of things about a woman before having sex with them. Indeed I would argue that not knowing such things about a person you’re having sex with is disrespectful.

    When I was still dating I never went out with a fundamentalist christian, a ‘pro-lifer’  or a republican because I didn’t want to waste my time and or invite such people into my personal life.

  • julie-watkins

    But I do believe non-controlling men who do want to do the right thing should not be treated like deadbeats simply for having a hard time adjusting.

    If a relationship has gotten to a point of threatening lawyers & lawsuits, or calling the police … the relationship has broken or wasn’t stable to begin with — almost all the time. The relationships I’ve observed that turned toxic, there were warning signs ahead of time. I also know of a few relationships were major “not fair” stuff happened, but the couples are still together because being together was more important to those couples, and they worked it out. And Person A now knows the warning flags if Person B is going to be clueless again and can mitigate the effects. So I think the men you’re thinking of who may get blind-sided — well, it’s a good defensive strategy for any relationship to have ground rules about communication, about requesting a reevaluation/renegotiation of agreements. I like whoever it was who quoted “Choose wisely, treat kindly” that’s very good advice.

  • crowepps

    Well, let’s see.  I have received child support.  I have helped my husband pay child support.  I worked for a time at a child support agency.  I was a legal secretary working on domestic cases involving child support.  I have been a court reporter for far, FAR too long taking testimony in domestic cases and typing up court transcripts of judge’s decisions about child support.  Yeah, I’ve thought about it a lot.  The present system stinks.

     

    My take on child support, and forgive me if I sound cynical, is that to SOME men child support is unfair because they don’t want to ‘use’ the kids right now when they’re young and boring.  Later, when the kids are more fun, then they might be interested in buying the child things directly once in a while, but they don’t want any of their money going to THAT WOMAN because women who ‘make demands’ are uppity, being told what to do by anybody whatsoever makes them feel emasculated, and besides, they aren’t getting any sex now so what would they be paying her for?

     

    It is has been my experience that many, many cases of men fighting for custody now have a new wife/girlfriend living with them, and so they figure since women are interchangeable for THEM, mothers are also interchangeable for children, and they can save a lot of money by getting the new gal to do all that work for free.

     

    Society in general believes that GOOD mothers should WANT to devote every second of their time to taking care of children if they REALLY love them and demands for financial help mean they are NOT good mothers because GOOD mothering is always done for free.

     

    Being a mother is the most important role in society, BUT mothers themselves should never, ever, ever ask for anything for themselves because being a GOOD mother is all about self-abnegation, surrending oneself to ego suicide so that you no longer have any independent existence or inherent worth but instead live entirely for others.  ‘We value mothers SO MUCH that we insist women kill their ‘selves’ and mutate into interchangeable mothers who provide free labor’.

     

    SOME women use withholding contact with the children as a punishment or motivator to get even with or to extort support from men, to the great detriment of the children.  The Uniform Child Custody and Support Act doesn’t cover this effectively, and men who are refused visitation (and the children who miss them) have little recourse.

  • julie-watkins

    Society in general believes that GOOD mothers should WANT to devote every second of their time to taking care of children if they REALLY love them and demands for financial help mean they are NOT good mothers because GOOD mothering is always done for free.

    This is the playbook of the status quo: women are meant to be servants. (I’m trying out using the ‘unfair taxes’ analogy because I think it has potential to maybe get through in “hearts & minds” discussions just how unfair many sexist expectations can be.)

    I think the child support situation will stay broken (as your examples show) as long as the government is all about money should go to corporate welfare rather than child welfare.

     

  • crowepps

    Besides, should men really try to extract that info of “would you abort or not?” while in the dating process? Sounds like men trying to pressure women.

    Speaking as a woman, I’d just soon men revealed their motivation of ‘getting laid without wanting to take any responsibility’ as early in the dating process as possible. That way they don’t waste my time.

     

    And, speaking entirely of my own experience, the amount of pressure men put on women to have sex in the first place is both unrelenting and a major annoyance.

  • invalid-0

    Is a doctor who nicks your colon not obligated to provide biological assistance to you while you are dependent upon him?

  • crowepps

    Is he going to fix your colon with a patch from his own?

     

    And interestingly, if I remember the various Good Samaritan laws correctly, he is only obligated to fix the colon if you are PAYING him to be mucking about in your innards.  If he is volunteering, as for instance as a passerby at a traffic accident, no, he is not obligated.

  • invalid-0

    Oh, come on.  Even if your “forced Samaritan” analogy – equating a mother refusing to give blood to her son to a woman asking a doctor to burn or dismember her child – held true, you wouldn’t dare apply it in all situations.  What are your thoughts on women who smoke or drink or do other recreational drugs during pregnancy?  We hold them accountable under the law for damage done to the fetus in any court in this country.  Where’s THEIR bodily autonomy?  Only if they are completely successful in killing the child do we let them off the hook.

    What we have is a situation where the woman has already consented to the child’s presence and then revokes it at a later date.

  • prochoiceferret

    What are your thoughts on women who smoke or drink or do other recreational drugs during pregnancy?

    If they’re not keen on giving birth to a (healthy) child, why on Earth would you not want them to have an abortion?

    What we have is a situation where the woman has already consented to the child’s presence and then revokes it at a later date.

    Yes, kind of like women who consent to sex, and then later decide to revoke it. Men who think that women shouldn’t be able to revoke that consent are usually called “rapists.”

     

  • crowepps

    What we have is a situation where the woman has already consented to the child’s presence and then revokes it at a later date.

    Some people have sex because they want to have a child.

    Most people have sex because it’s fun and it feels good.

    Having sex is not consent to pregnancy if you don’t want to be pregnant, that’s why people use ‘contraception’.

    A zygote is not ‘a child’.

    A blastocyst is not ‘a child’.

    A fetus is not ‘a child’.

    In just about every endeavor in which humans engage, consent can be and is withdrawn when the activity does not measure up to expectations or has bad results.  There is no reason, outside of the religious belief in human exceptionality, to make pregnancy an exception to that fact.

     

    If you’re not clear on the term ‘human exceptionality’ here’s an excellent example of it:

    “How any rational person could belittle the pivotal role that human life plays in the universe…”  Bill Donohue

     

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alex-wilhelm/bill-donohue-must-resign_b_613348.html

  • ahunt

    Besides, should men really try to extract that info of “would you abort or not?” while in the dating process? Sounds like men trying to pressure women.

     

    I just had to see this again. It seems to me…that in the course of the dating process, one’s moral/political/social foundations-viewpoints are among the first topics of discussion…and assuming one possess a minimum of perception, one should have no difficulty getting a strong sense of whether one would abort or not, or if one is conflicted.

     

    In any scenario, of course…one would probably be concerned with NOT inflicting an unwanted pregnancy on a woman one is “pressuring” for sex, correct?

  • arekushieru

    I believe that they can be forced to pay, because we can not conflate financial rights with right to bodily autonomy.   We CAN conflate financial rights with financial rights, and, if the rights cannot be conflated within that context, there is no contest.

  • harry834

    I have read all your responses to my comment. Thank you for the responses. Time permitting, I may or may not have some responses later.

  • harry834

    I apreciate your work and personal experience in the child-support field

  • crowepps

    I will admit, listening to dysfunctional people justify their irrationalities certainly gives you a good look at the ‘human nature’ that is usually decently hidden in civilized society.  And it sure does make a mockery of high-flown statement like “children are our future” or “motherhood is the most important job in the world”.  From what I’ve seen, most people figure the future, and the children, should look out for themselves, and motherhood is a lot LESS important than the almighty dollar.

  • arekushieru

    If it was really the abortions, themselves, that bothered them, all other examples of personal autonomy overriding the right to life would enrage them to that point.  Maybe ProLifers don’t consciously realize it, but abortions, themselves, are not what truly enrage them for the most part.

     

    When I refer to abortions, I mean the procedure that results in the loss of life for a fetus.

  • teedub

    A beautiful and elegant piece of writing SG. I agree – silently – with much of what you write around here, but today I just felt compelled to de-lurk for a moment in order to give this comment the kudos I think it deserves.

  • arekushieru

    We DON’T give ‘sentient’ human beings anywhere NEAR the same rights that PLers would grant feoti.  So, the question about sentience is moot, of course.  Would you prefer to treat everyone as a pre-dead corpse.  We are not basing anything, in this specific context, on potentiality, after all or what someone does, doesn’t, did or didn’t have in regards to sentience, consciousness, etc.  YOU are.

     

    And, of course, you completely missed her point.  She said nothing about birth.  She mentioned the removal of an early-term fetus from the uterus, where those physiological changes you mentioned…?  Will not occur.

     

     

  • arekushieru

    Actually, no.  It’s not.  You can only call feoti persons or human beings if you want to describe cells, tumours, parasitic twins and fetus in fetu as persons/human beings.

     

    It seems to me, you are the one who is basing their argument on personal opinion and moral autonomy.

  • arekushieru

    Okay, I guess my comments just can’t be seen by others, yet, which is why I didn’t see it before I logged in.  Whoops, though, I can’t delete this reply.

  • arekushieru

    Except that ProLife ‘chicks’ abort in high numbers all the while proclaiming that their abortion is the only moral abortion.  So, that might not help him much.

  • crowepps

    Because she would never TELL him about it so he could proceed in happy ignorance.

  • arekushieru

    Then why not make that assumption for those already born, hmmm…?  And who do you think should make that assumption for the fetus?  Completely unrelated strangers?  Why?  When have completely unrelated strangers ever had the ability to make one’s medical decisions?  Oh, that’s right… never…!

  • arekushieru

    consent to usage of one’s body is not consent to another action, as I’ve told you, before.  It is DEFinitely not consent to an entirely different right.

     

    To clear up your most probable confusion over explicit consent in the other thread, one is not a parent until one has taken the infant home from the hospital.  And, whether or not one is a parent, a woman must also provide financial support if the man decides to raise the child.  In both cases these are equal and related rights and explicit consent, as defined in this case, has already been given.

  • arekushieru

    True….

    *Slaps head*  Shoulda thought of that, lol!  :D

  • arekushieru

    I would still have great difficulty with men not paying financial support even in the cases you outlined, unLESS women were granted those same financial rights.  The only time I think that a man can forego providing financial support is if the women’s financial rights are somehow ‘superior’ to his own, legal-wise, of course, or the man was raped, so that the women could get pregnant (there is a case where this happened).

  • wendy-banks

    And of course, preg women/new moms like their games too.

    Single moms like their games too! The kid likes to ‘cyber-farm’ with me and trouncing bad guys is kind of grows on you!  Being a ‘super-person’ is awesome :)

  • crowepps

    If men have custody, or if the children are in State custody, women also have and pay child support obligations.

    More women are paying child support these days, according to a survey by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

     

    In all, 55 percent of the respondents have cited an increase in the number of mothers who have been assigned to make child support payments over the past five years. Additionally, 42 percent of the divorce attorneys have seen the size of overall payment amounts rise during the same period of time, the study found.

     

    “The changes in our society are almost always reflected in divorce courts and the legal system. The issues involved with child custody payments are certainly not an exception,” James Hennenhoefer, president of the AAML, says in a news release. “If one spouse is better suited to provide financial care, it is in the best interests of the court and all parties involved to put the needs of the child first.
    http://blog.syracuse.com/family/2008/10/study_finds_more_women_are_pay.html

  • crowepps

    For all he knows, every one of those times he failed to use birth control himself, there was an abortion shortly thereafter without him being clued in to the ‘secret’.

  • colleen

    Lets hope so. He’s even worse than the guy who goes on about what is and is not “permissible” or the guy who went on about about how we women urinate out of the vagina.
    He sure sounds a lot like Rush Limbaugh.

  • harry834

    gaming is fun :)

  • bei1052

    Yeah, MRAs hate that!

     

    Hate what? Inequality? Yeah, apparently feminists don’t hate it as much as they say they hate it.

     

    And we’re there! If there is a child, then both parents have to support it. If the dad does the single-parent thing, then the MOTHER has to pay child support! Ka-ching! MRAs don’t ever seem too keen on that option, however.

     

    So both are equal, so long as a woman chooses not to have an abortion during pregnancy and chooses to give birth because, unlike the man, a consent to sex isn’t a consent to pregnancy. Seems to me like you’re ignoring the fact how a woman only gets to the part where she has to pay child support if she chooses to get to that part, ‘cuz otherwise she’ll just absolve herself of parental duty long before then. So what’s wrong with giving a man a choice to get to that part?

     

    …Oh, wait. He chose to engage in sex. The fact that the women chose to engage in sex, though, is irrelevant. I see, I see.

     

    Anyway, I’m so sorry that you were born with a penis instead of a uterus. Maybe, if you stop treating women like walking incubators whose bodies don’t belong to them, God will make you a woman in your next life—and then YOU will have the power to continue a pregnancy to term or not! (Plus, you’ll learn firsthand just how awesome it is to have a clitoris.)

     

    Oh, PCF. What would you say to me if I were a woman? The fact that I’m a male doesn’t change my argument in the slightest. It really must bother you to know that you don’t have any real rebuttals to my arguments, so instead you try to make some pseudo-witty remark that would make even GWB look like Shakespeare.

  • prochoiceferret

    Ah, you decided to actually go back to my earlier comment and digest the point that I’d made, so that you could then poop out the following:

    So both are equal, so long as a woman chooses not to have an abortion during pregnancy and chooses to give birth because, unlike the man, a consent to sex isn’t a consent to pregnancy. Seems to me like you’re ignoring the fact how a woman only gets to the part where she has to pay child support if she chooses to get to that part, ‘cuz otherwise she’ll just absolve herself of parental duty long before then. So what’s wrong with giving a man a choice to get to that part?

    You have a real hard time understanding the fact that the only reason a woman gets to “absolve herself of parental duty” is because her body builds the baby in the first place. She doesn’t get to escape parenthood because we’ve given her a privilege that we deny to men; she can choose an abortion because her body belongs to her, and forcing her to bodily support a pregnancy against her will is a violation of her human rights. You know how Mommy and Daddy say to you “my house, my rules?” Well, with a woman, it’s “my body, my rules.”

     

    I’m so sorry that males’ bodies are not involved in the process of pregnancy (beyond, well, you know), so men do not have anything that they can withhold that would terminate an existing pregnancy. You may want to complain to the guy upstairs on how terribly unfair His whole reproduction scheme is for men.

     

    But, you won’t. You’ll continue to argue about how all this is irrelevant to what you typed out, that womens’ rights are just red herrings and yellow perch and rainbowfish in general, that my little ferret brain can’t possibly comprehend your brilliance and my report card is all Fs, and that it’s no skin off your chest if we just continue to live in our happy feminist pro-choice la-la land. Even when someone who has direct experience on some aspect of this debate all but pins you down and force-feeds you honest-to-God facts, you’ll misread, ignore, turn points around and Houdini your way out of actually learning anything (that was quite some maneuvering you did there, when crowepps spelled out for you the very burdensome nature of pregnancy and you managed to escape none the wiser).

     

    And we’ll continue to marvel at what a pitiful example of a human being you are, and wonder why you have this near-pathological need to keep debasing your intellect, debating skills, and at times, basic mental acuity on pro-choice Internet forums. We’ll respond to a post here or there, just so that you don’t get lonely and start bawling your little heart out. But of course, many of us have bigger fish to fry, what with reproductive health and all being on the line for so many people, so it really would be better if you went back with Mommy and Daddy. They love you, you know. They might just have a little trouble expressing it at times.

  • squirrely-girl

    Dear PCF,

    I <3 you

    Love, SG

  • cmarie

    If it was really the abortions, themselves, that bothered them, all other examples of personal autonomy overriding the right to life would enrage them to that point. 

     

    like what? 

  • eric-scheidler

    It’s interesting to me, as a pro-life activist, to be told to “get a life” by folks who’s own lives seem to be devoted to fretting about what I’m doing with my time. Who needs to get a life, again?

     

    There seems to be an obsession on the pro-choice side with what kinds of people pro-lifers are, especially pro-life activists. From where I’m sitting, this is the predominant concern of the pro-choice movement.

     

    Pro-choicers seem more interested in talking about what horrible people we pro-lifers are, instead of defending the legal status quo on abortion, or addressing any of the objections we raise to abortion.

     

    I don’t see a corresponding tendency on the pro-life side. We’re far more interested in addressing the abortion issue than demonizing our opponents. Sure, there’s plenty of demonizing going on, too — but there are many voices out there, like mine, calling on pro-lifers not to waste time bashing the opposition. I don’t see any such message coming from pro-choice leaders.

     

    Curious, too, that this theory that we “need a life” explains why the pro-choice side is so overwhelmingly outnumbered at the grassroots level.

     

    Even if Amanda Marcotte is right, what consolation is that? If it makes you feel better to think of your opponents as a bunch of losers, even as they dominate on the ground, how committed are you, really, to your cause?

     

  • crowepps

    We’re far more interested in addressing the abortion issue than demonizing our opponents.

    Isn’t that because the people you prefer to demonize are pregnant women?

     

    My interest is based in self-protection.  When people are murdering and burning and assaulting and harassing women on the street and actively attempting to get our hospital/doctor/pharmacist to aid them in promoting our unwanted pregnancies, hey, those of us you are proactive try to figure out just what’s going on so we can stop/incarcerate/evade.

     

    Many people have similiar feelings concerning the Army of God, the KKK, the Dominionist movement, the Moonies, all the various rabid proselytizers who feel called to impose tyranny in the service of their obsessions.  The average normal person is puzzled: ‘Those people think they’re entitled to control my life?  Who the heck do they think they are?  What’s WRONG with them?’

     

    Always have had an interest in abnormal psychology, and how it both arises out of and later perpetuates childhood abuse, and find it fascinating how the Authoritarian Personality both perpetuates itself and tries to spread its own internal pain around to everyone else.

  • eric-scheidler

    Crowepps says, “[T]he people you prefer to demonize are pregnant women.”

     

    Crowepps: You can cherry-pick statements from pro-lifers to support the belief that the pro-lifers prefer to demonize pregnant women if you want, but in reality, almost all of the demonizing that goes on on our side is of abortionists and abortion advocates, not the abortion-minded women we want to convert.

     

    As for me, I prefer not to demonize anybody.

     

     

  • squirrely-girl

    Incredibly interesting point on the possible role of the Authoritarian Personality in the pro-life movement. One of my former professors, Sam McFarland, has amassed a significant body of work in this area. I think you raise a rather interesting research question!  

  • prochoiceferret

    Crowepps: You can cherry-pick statements from pro-lifers to support the belief that the pro-lifers prefer to demonize pregnant women if you want,

    I think crowepps upgraded to a combine harvester a long time ago.

  • crowepps

    An interesting statement, and it certainly isn’t necessary to cherry-pick but simply to read your website:

    The Pro-Life Action League believes that sidewalk counseling is the most effective means of saving lives—both babies and mothers—from abortion.

    http://prolifeaction.org/sidewalk/

    I’d certainly be interested in your explanation of how harassing women going into PP wins ‘coverts’.  Actually, the fact that you used the term ‘convert’ makes we wonder, is ProLife then considered a religion?

     

    I understand everybody has to make a living, and this is the family ‘business’, and certainly I’ll never get a paycheck of $72,839 a year like you do in your job as “communications director” but instead struggle along doing actual real work for people who ASK for me to help them, but frankly, lots of people think it’s immoral to invade the privacy of other people in the effort to make a buck.

     

    http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=search.summary&orgid=9888

  • squirrely-girl

    I find your choice of words to be rather interesting/telling, “…not the abortion-minded women we want to convert.”

     

    While I’m totally down with people converting on their own (i.e., independently expressing interest and seeking further counsel), I’m incredibly leery of individuals and organizations that seek to convert others.

     

    You don’t have to look very hard or far back in history or religion to see that this has generally involved human rights abuses on the part of the individuals and groups doing the converting and ended VERY badly for those individuals and groups being converted. 

  • wendy-banks

    Always have had an interest in abnormal psychology

    Me too, it’s fascinating–And a little creepy! Human psychology really floats my boat– I really enjoy trying to figure out what make people ‘tick’. Some people like serial killers, I CAN’T seem to wrap my mind around what makes them tick– They are almost, well, too alien for my mind to understand.

    And speaking about ‘ticks’, I have a sneaking hunch that little Bei and Faultroy tried to get me to ‘friend’ them on Facebook– If Eric Salley and Slias Bemmerson are their ‘true’ names– Their Mo’s, pictures, and general attitudes sure fit, but, *shrugs* I’m not willing to ‘friend’ them to find out.

    *Yawns* I have an early day tomorrow, I have to have surgery *NO! I don’t wanna go in there! It’s gonna hurt! Buckack!* Did-did I just lay an egg? ;)

    Night.

  • eric-scheidler

    I see I’ll have to work a little harder to make my point clear through the prevailing attitudes of this community. Fair enough. “Convert” was a poor choice of words.

     

    By “convert” I mean only “change her mind” — specifically “change her mind about going through with the abortion.” I wasn’t referring to any sort of religious conversion at all.

     

    But whatever I mean by “convert” it ought to be obvious that harassment and demonizing only undermine that goal. No woman that I know of ever decided not to go through with an abortion because she was harassed or demonized.

     

    On the contrary, they change their minds because they experience the compassion of a pro-life counselor. Or do you prefer to dismiss the experiences of those women? If so, that seems rather contrary to the ethos of “choice.”

     

    As for my salary, I don’t hear any complaining about the MUCH larger salaries earned by my opposite numbers in the well-funded pro-choice movement. And try raising eight kids on my salary if you think I’m all about “making a buck.” I could do far better in the private sector.

     

    But isn’t that another red herring? I thought pro-life activists like me were motivated by misogyny, sexual frustration (odd charge to level against a father of eight), religious zealotry and/or just plain being a loser. Now I hear it’s money I’m after.

     

    You’re sounding a little desperate. I must — simply MUST — be motivated by something — ANYTHING — other than authentic compassion for women and their unborn children.

     

    But what if you’re wrong, and I really am so motivated? How far off track will the pro-choice movement be if you’ve completely misread what makes pro-lifers like me “tick”?

     

    Pretty far off. And I think that’s part of why you’re losing. Think about it.

  • julie-watkins

    If a worldview is misogynistic, someone who holds that worldview can, I think, be called misogynist even if the feelings aren’t concious. If you feel traditional sex roles protect women in some way, I can understand that you wouldn’t think of promoting traditional sexroles as being misogyny. However, saying compassion for “unborn children” is why you want women to change their minds about abortion … that’s using social coercion (or legal force, if you are campaigning for laws that restrict access to abortion). If attempting to give birth (give life) is considered an obligation rather than a gift then you are treating women and poor people as 2nd class, which I consider sexist and classist. Even if that’s not how you personally classify your motivation.

  • prochoiceferret

    By “convert” I mean only “change her mind” — specifically “change her mind about going through with the abortion.” I wasn’t referring to any sort of religious conversion at all.

    Does that also refer to “change her mind about going through the health risks of late pregnancy,” “change her mind about going through childbirth for a child she didn’t want in the first place,” “change her mind about going through the difficult process of giving up a child for adoption,” “change her mind about giving up her hopes of higher education to raise a child,” or “change her mind about giving her existing children all the resources she can provide them?”

    But whatever I mean by “convert” it ought to be obvious that harassment and demonizing only undermine that goal.

    Well, then, you may want to sit down with all the pro-life protestors and “sidewalk counselors” that do use these techniques, and tell them to knock it off. But you won’t, of course. Because it’s just not that big a deal for you to be “undermined,” is it?

    On the contrary, they change their minds because they experience the compassion of a pro-life counselor. Or do you prefer to dismiss the experiences of those women? If so, that seems rather contrary to the ethos of “choice.”

    Oh, so you do respect the experiences of the majority of women who do not regret their abortions? Excellent!

    As for my salary, I don’t hear any complaining about the MUCH larger salaries earned by my opposite numbers in the well-funded pro-choice movement. And try raising eight kids on my salary if you think I’m all about “making a buck.” I could do far better in the private sector.

    Money-wise, maybe. But what private industry gives you comparable opportunities of self-righteousness? In most professions, you get fired if you call your female clients “sluts” and “whores!”

    But isn’t that another red herring? I thought pro-life activists like me were motivated by misogyny, sexual frustration (odd charge to level against a father of eight), religious zealotry and/or just plain being a loser. Now I hear it’s money I’m after.

    This is why God invented the “All of the above” answer.

     

    And if you’ve only gotten laid eight times in your life, you’d be pretty sexually frustrated, all right. Isn’t it just terrible that God won’t allow you have spontaneous, multi-orgasmic, reliably non-precreative sex, like the rest of us heathens?

    You’re sounding a little desperate. I must — simply MUST — be motivated by something — ANYTHING — other than authentic compassion for women and their unborn children.

    Does “compassion” for someone include respecting their experiences, and their personal agency? Or are those optional components?

    But what if you’re wrong, and I really am so motivated? How far off track will the pro-choice movement be if you’ve completely misread what makes pro-lifers like me “tick”?

    Hey, who knows? Maybe we’ve completely misread why the Taliban bomb girls’ schools, and Saudi Arabia doesn’t let them go into public alone. Maybe it’s just that they have so much respect for women that they want to ensure they’re not put in harm’s way, whether by learning scary things or running into people they don’t know.

    Pretty far off. And I think that’s part of why you’re losing. Think about it.

    Yes, I guess that whole “womens’ rights” thing was just a passing fad. We’ll probably see the 19th Amendment get repealed at some point, too.

  • eric-scheidler

    Well, then, you may want to sit down with all the pro-life protestors and “sidewalk counselors” that do use these techniques, and tell them to knock it off. But you won’t, of course. Because it’s just not that big a deal for you to be “undermined,” is it?

     

    As a matter of fact, my organization works very hard to promote an ethos of respect, compassion and dialog not only among the hundreds of sidewalk counselors that we train, but throughout the pro-life movement.

     

    I cringe when I see the way that some pro-life people behave — especially in online forums like this where anonymity makes it easy to be rude. But I know from a great deal of experience that the vast majority of pro-life activists eschew such misguided — and un-Christian — tactics.

     

    [W]hat private industry gives you comparable opportunities of self-righteousness? In most professions, you get fired if you call your female clients “sluts” and “whores!”

     

    Actually, I don’t call anybody names, ever.

     

    But while we’re on the subject of self-righteousness, what about the self-righteousness of Amanda Marcotte’s article above? It’s inherently self-righteous to go around telling other people to “get a life.”

     

    And if you’ve only gotten laid eight times in your life, you’d be pretty sexually frustrated, all right.

     

    Uh . . . It doesn’t quite work that way.

     

    Yes, as practicing Catholics, my wife and I at times have had to exercise sexual self-control. This is a choice we have made in order to uphold what we believe to be inherent meaning of our marriage and human sexuality in general.

     

    And yes, sometimes that choice can lead to periods of frustration. But I count it a freedom to be capable of making, and sticking with, hard choices like these.

     

    It seems to me it would be far more frustrating to be incapable of making hard choices, especially over something as important — and as central to one’s identity — as sexuality.

     

    Hey, who knows? Maybe we’ve completely misread why the Taliban bomb girls’ schools . . .

     

    If you really want to equate offering abortion-bound women a last chance choose life for their unborn children with blowing up girls’ schools, I guess I can’t stop you. And in a way, I don’t want to.

     

    Maybe the less you understand what really motivates the pro-life movement, the better. You can’t effectively fight an enemy you don’t understand. And y’all just dont’ understand us.

     

     

     

  • prochoiceferret

    As a matter of fact, my organization works very hard to promote an ethos of respect, compassion and dialog not only among the hundreds of sidewalk counselors that we train, but throughout the pro-life movement.

     

    I cringe when I see the way that some pro-life people behave — especially in online forums like this where anonymity makes it easy to be rude. But I know from a great deal of experience that the vast majority of pro-life activists eschew such misguided — and un-Christian — tactics.

    You don’t get out much, do you?

    But while we’re on the subject of self-righteousness, what about the self-righteousness of Amanda Marcotte’s article above? It’s inherently self-righteous to go around telling other people to “get a life.”

    Why is it self-righteousnes? We’re genuinely concerned that you are leading a sad and pitiful existence by dedicating yourself to the pointless pursuit of denying women the right to control their reproductive systems. If you would just allow women to exercise agency over their own bodies, you could lead such a happier life! When we say “Get a life!” it’s only because we care.

    Yes, as practicing Catholics, my wife and I at times have had to exercise sexual self-control. This is a choice we have made in order to uphold what we believe to be inherent meaning of our marriage and human sexuality in general.

     

    And yes, sometimes that choice can lead to periods of frustration.

    There are many different kinds of frustration. Do these periods lean toward any in particular?

    It seems to me it would be far more frustrating to be incapable of making hard choices, especially over something as important — and as central to one’s identity — as sexuality.

    Hey, our thoughts exactly! That’s why we support enabling women to make these hard choices about their own sexuality… and their own reproduction.

     

    (Maybe you’re secretly a pro-choice advocate, deep down… sure, you have to pretend you’re anti-choice, to fit in with your family and friends. But wouldn’t it be great to one day come out of the closet and stop living the lie?)

    If you really want to equate offering abortion-bound women a last chance choose life for their unborn children with blowing up girls’ schools, I guess I can’t stop you. And in a way, I don’t want to.

    Well, hey, some protesters do firebomb abortion clinics. But I’m sure that they, and the Taliban, have no doubt that they’re doing what’s best for (young) women. (It’s not like they ever actually bother to listen to what the women have to say.)

    Maybe the less you understand what really motivates the pro-life movement, the better. You can’t effectively fight an enemy you don’t understand. And y’all just dont’ understand us.

    Yeah, I just don’t get why you get such a kick out of denying pregnant women rights over their own bodies. Abnormal psychology is a rabbit’s hole that goes very deep, and is best left to professionals. I’ll just be happy to help ensure that real-life women aren’t hurt by your personal issues.

  • crowepps

    I see I’ll have to work a little harder to make my point clear through the prevailing attitudes of this community. Fair enough. “Convert” was a poor choice of words.

    There’s really no excuse for a “poor choice of words” by a professional “communications director” pulling down a fat salary.

    By “convert” I mean only “change her mind” — specifically “change her mind about going through with the abortion.” I wasn’t referring to any sort of religious conversion at all.

    Convert is a word that in common usage almost exclusively refers to religion. The words for “change her mind” are CONVINCE or PERSUADE or INFLUENCE or TALK INTO or CON .

    But whatever I mean by “convert” it ought to be obvious that harassment and demonizing only undermine that goal. No woman that I know of ever decided not to go through with an abortion because she was harassed or demonized.

    That’s very true, which makes the whole ‘sidewalk counseling’ thing even more bizarre.

    On the contrary, they change their minds because they experience the compassion of a pro-life counselor. Or do you prefer to dismiss the experiences of those women? If so, that seems rather contrary to the ethos of “choice.”

    Sure, sure, and the muggers who stop you in alleys and ask for your wallet want you to experience the desperation of the poor in a street-theater demonstration that economic egalitarianism is the higher morality.

     

    They would love you in North Korea. “It’s true that it wasn’t until after days of ‘persuasion’ that the soldier disavowed his country but disbelieving the ‘confession’ he made shows contempt for him and his ‘choice’.”

    As for my salary, I don’t hear any complaining about the MUCH larger salaries earned by my opposite numbers in the well-funded pro-choice movement.

    I just was pointing out that your efforts to restrict women’s rights was your JOB, one that you were set up in by your FATHER, and that you live on tax-free donations that finance your life so that you don’t have to actually WORK and so are free to harass strange women on the streets.

    And try raising eight kids on my salary if you think I’m all about “making a buck.” I could do far better in the private sector.

    Really? How do you know? Have you ever WORKED in the private sector, or have you always worked for your dad? It’s a lot harder to satisfy a boss who actually expects benchmarks to be met and “communications” to accomplish more than successfully coaxing donations from the sentimental and deluded.

    But isn’t that another red herring? I thought pro-life activists like me were motivated by misogyny, sexual frustration (odd charge to level against a father of eight), religious zealotry and/or just plain being a loser. Now I hear it’s money I’m after.

    I have no idea what your motivations are, and am not particularly interested, since my only connection to your activities is a sincere desire that you STOP TRYING TO INTRUDE IN AND CONTROL THE LIVES OF FEMALE STRANGERS.

    You’re sounding a little desperate. I must — simply MUST — be motivated by something — ANYTHING — other than authentic compassion for women and their unborn children.

    I know lots of people motivated by authentic compassion for women and children who provide actual HELP to enable them to have better lives. They don’t follow them down the sidewalk, invade their privacy, or insist what they need is God in their lives. Frankly, I still can’t see the link between ‘compassion’ and harassment.  Genuine compassion does not elicit responses of “Get AWAY from me!  Stop FOLLOWING me!  Leave me ALONE!”

    But what if you’re wrong, and I really am so motivated? How far off track will the pro-choice movement be if you’ve completely misread what makes pro-lifers like me “tick”? Pretty far off. And I think that’s part of why you’re losing. Think about it.

    It doesn’t matter what makes you ‘tick’, aside from abnormal psychologists most people don’t care whether the beliefs of obsessives are rooted in religiosity, misogyny or are just a con (‘save lives, send your tax-free donation’), what matters is that your cause is doomed. Women who don’t want to be pregnant will use birth control, some pregnancies will still be unwanted and women will still find ways to end them. Whether it’s smuggled Plan B or RU-486, ‘secret sister’ circles passing around illicit manual aspiration devices for self-use, or doctors in back alleys, you are not going to be able to control ALL women by using their sexuality to hobble THEM with eight children ever again.

  • crowepps

    The history of the church demonstrates pretty conclusively that if there weren’t any people who refused to convert around available to torment, they started persecuting each other for the failure to ‘believe correctly’, buring people for heresy or repeatedly splitting the church by schism over minutae. I don’t think we’ve advanced very far since.

     

    Just started reading “Jesus Wars: How Four Patriarchs, Three Queens, and Two Emperors Decided What Christians Would Believe for the Next 1,500 years” but it certainly is fascinating!

  • ahunt

    Why is it self-righteousnes? We’re genuinely concerned that you are leading a sad and pitiful existence by dedicating yourself to the pointless pursuit of denying women the right to control their reproductive systems. If you would just allow women to exercise agency over their own bodies, you could lead such a happier life! When we say “Get a life!” it’s only because we care.

     

    Subtle.

  • squirrely-girl

    I’m in my final year of work/ABD on my PhD in Developmental Psychology and I teach courses on Women and Gender, Human Sexuality, and various developmental topics. I absolutely LOVE the field and studying people and I just can’t imagine doing anything else with my life. :)

     

    On a related note – the “true” psychopath/sociopath is an interesting creature to interact with. True = have a complete lack of empathy or ability to put themselves in another’s position and see people as mere animate tools to accomplish their wants and desires. I prefer the term creature over person or human because I truly believe there IS a missing link or element that makes them “other.” I came across a couple of “futures” with the children and adolescents I used to work with and off the top of my head I can think of three adults I’ve worked with/met that would meet these criteria. Ugh. I still genuinely shudder at the thought of these guys. 

  • crowepps

    Is it your experience that they all were abused/neglected as children? It’s my understanding that tends to be the etiology – having a parent treated them like a ‘creature’.

  • prochoiceferret

    I’m in my final year of work/ABD on my PhD in Developmental Psychology and I teach courses on Women and Gender, Human Sexuality, and various developmental topics. I absolutely LOVE the field and studying people and I just can’t imagine doing anything else with my life. :)

    No wonder you like to hang out here. It’s like this place is a watering hole for anti-choice sociopaths! What better place to observe them in isolation, and document their habits?

     

    Not quite as scary as the typical “pro-lifer”

  • squirrely-girl

    Most recent neuropsych research has shown that true psychopathy has significant neurological correlates. Quite simply, their brains are both anatomically and physiologically different than that of “normal people.” These individuals have reduced grey matter in their prefrontal/orbitofrontal cortex and functional impairments in their amygdala. The amygdala, in particular, is incredibly interesting given its critical role in both the fear response as well as the ability to process faces and emotions in others. In other words, it’s not that these individuals won’t display empathy… they can’t. They REALLY just don’t understand why people get upset with what they do. 

     

    There’s also an emerging line of research that shows a strong genetic relationship through the male side – specifically, male offspring of male psychopaths are particularly prone to display these neurological correlates. However, we’d be fools to just completely ignore the environmental issues as well. I have witnessed and firmly believe in the possibility of good outcomes from raising a genetically/biologically “bad” child in a good environment. Alternately, I’ve seen genetically/biologically “good” kids raised by complete psychopaths who turn out “bad.” Children CAN be taught. For example, despite the genetic and biological issues working against them, children with Aspergers can be taught plenty of social skills and individuals with mental retardation can develop work skills. If presented with strong moral and social role models and caregivers who understand what they’re working with, children with the neurological correlates of psychopathy can blend rather well with the rest of the world and their outward behavioral traits of psychopathy can be softened. Let’s not forget that not all psychopaths are “bad criminals” – plenty of them exist (and climb quite high) in legitimate career fields such as business, academia, politics, and the military. They’re never “cured” but they can contribute to society and minimize the damage they cause to others. Although I still wouldn’t suggest marriage or child rearing :(

     

    However, a “perfect storm” occurs when genetic/biological psychopaths are raised by psychopathic men or histrionic/borderline women. When these personality disorders “parent” any number of horrible outcomes can and do occur (although I will note that I’ve seen a few resilient exceptions). These parents do tend to treat children as “things”…things that can get them attention and provide benefits (e.g., social, financial). Psychopathic men are obviously emotionally distant and often overly demanding of their male children, all while failing to appreciate the role of physical, psychological, intellectual, and emotional development of children.  These men who actually stay around to parent often demand from their children physical and psychological abilities that the child is just woefully unable to do given their age.  Alternately, histrionic and borderline women often demand significant emotional/social attention from their children and look at their child as the one person that will “always love them” and “can’t leave.” But that doesn’t last too long because children grow up and have needs and ultimately start to think for themselves. Little girls grow up to be their “competition.” I’ve sadly heard this one way too many times to count  :(  one such experience that sticks out involved a “mother” who was obviously on something at the time refusing to attend any further visitations because, and I quote, her “little whore of a daughter was lookin’ at ma’ man like she wants to fuck him.” Keep in mind the girl was 9, this was the first time she’d ever met the “boyfriend” because it was a brand new “relationship,” and there was quite a bit of evidence to suggest her daughter had been sexually assaulted by a previous “boyfriend.” Special. :/

     

    On the other hand, for these women, little boys are often “too much a resemblance” to their fathers, who, if not in the picture anymore, makes that boy particularly vulnerable to profound emotional and physical abuse. I remember working with a 12 year old boy whose deranged “mother” routinely tried to “burn the memory of the asshole that knocked her up and left” by putting out cigarettes on his back (where people couldn’t readily see them). It was super awesome when she started letting other people do it too. Special. :/

     

    Some of the “luckier” kids I’ve worked with had parent(s) who provided them with plenty of deviancy training (nothing like using your 8 year old in home burglaries by shoving them through windows and having them unlock doors!) and restricted most every opportunity to engage with “normal” people (they don’t generally like the competition for “parent of the year” and if you haven’t guessed yet, it doesn’t take much to take that title from them.) These environments are the perfect storm for children with the neurological correlates of psychopathy. Sorry if I depressed anybody but sadly, this is reality for far too many children and adolescents. :(

  • eric-scheidler

    You don’t get out much, do you?

     

    So if I DON’T work to expand an ethos of charity and respect towards abortion-bound women I’m a hypocrite or worse, but if I DO, I “don’t get out much.”

     

    Oh well.

  • eric-scheidler

    [Y]ou are not going to be able to control ALL women by using their sexuality to hobble THEM with eight children ever again.

     

    You see? When it comes down to it, your position really has nothing to do with “choice.” If you were really “pro-choice” you wouldn’t dream of knocking the choice my wife made to mother a large family. You’d respect that choice.

     

    And don’t try to justify yourself by countering that she and I don’t respect the choice of some women to have abortions. I never tried to claim all choices are equally valid. Some aren’t — like killing your unborn child.

     

    In the end, this isn’t about “choice” at all. It’s about exercising a nearly absolute sexual license. For whatever reason — I won’t try to guess — that has become the overruling value in your life.

     

    What’s reprehensible to me about that is that you’re willing to lure so many women and men — who don’t share your radical devotion to sexual libertinism — into the pain and misery that comes from abortion, all under cover of caring for their welfare.

     

     

  • prochoiceferret

    So if I DON’T work to expand an ethos of charity and respect towards abortion-bound women I’m a hypocrite or worse, but if I DO, I “don’t get out much.”

    You missed one slight detail: If you DO, and you say that all the abortion protesters you come into contact with are “compassionate” and “respectful,” and/or you believe that your efforts have actually made a difference on the ground, then yes, you don’t get out much.

  • rebellious-grrl

    First off, I see nothing reprehensible about ProChoice Ferret, or any of us that are pro-choice.

     

    What IS reprehensible is your phony patriarchal authoritarian bs. What this article is saying and you don’t grasp, is that we can see through your crap. We can see that you don’t really give two cents about women’s equality or freedom unless it fits in your patriarchal definition. Who cares if your wife gave birth to eight children. That’s her problem. I’ve chosen NEVER to have children. The world is overpopulated and in light of the recent BP oil-apocalypse I’m even happier that my husband and I are not putting another person on this earth. I am much more concerned about the “baby” pelicans, terns, and other wildlife than I am about having any children.

     

    I’m far more concerned about the actual pain and misery that is being inflicted on innocent (actual living) animals in the Gulf of Mexico than your fetus worship. Pain and misery caused by a demand for oil, driven by over-population and over-consumption by Americans.

     

    I’m so so so tired of hearing anti-choicers whine about “the innocent fetus.” It’s not a fricking baby, it’s a fetus! It’s amazing how the same people who are “pro-life” are in favor of the Iraq war, drilling for oil in places we have no business drilling (like a mile under the earth) and ruining our planet so they can have more children. I’m so absolutely sick of hearing anti-choicers bully and badger women going into a health clinic say, “Don’t kill your baby..blah, blah, blah.”

     

     

    So yes Eric, you and your anti-choice friends need to get a life.

  • crowepps

    If you were really “pro-choice” you wouldn’t dream of knocking the choice my wife made to mother a large family. You’d respect that choice.

    Respecting that choice does not require emulating it or thinking it’s a good idea or believing that other women should be coerced into it unwillingly.    ‘Respecting’ someone’s choice means accepting that they have the right to do it themselves, not thinking that it’s a good idea for everybody else.

    In the end, this isn’t about “choice” at all. It’s about exercising a nearly absolute sexual license. For whatever reason — I won’t try to guess — that has become the overruling value in your life.

     

    What’s reprehensible to me about that is that you’re willing to lure so many women and men — who don’t share your radical devotion to sexual libertinism — into the pain and misery that comes from abortion, all under cover of caring for their welfare.

    You sure spend a lot of time obsessing about sex.  Sorry, dear, but I’m afraid ‘then you’re a slut’ leaves me unmoved, since I’m probably one of the most inhibited people most have met, and my two abortions were both done to prevent infection after miscarriages when the fetus was already dead.

     

    “Radical devotion to sexual libertinism”?  Really?  That does sound shocking, even though it’s totally inaccurate.  But, hey, at least I’m not a priest!

  • julie-watkins

    You didn’t answer my comment above about misogyny, but I’ll try another question.

    What’s reprehensible to me about that is that you’re willing to lure so many women and men — who don’t share your radical devotion to sexual libertinism — into the pain and misery that comes from abortion, all under cover of caring for their welfare.

    My observation about luring is that as long as there are multiple points of view available that people in general aren’t going to be “lured” to one path or another. They’ll choose. Long again — I wish I would have clipped the  article — there was a report in Science News of a study that had asked a group of people (students?) how much their decisions were determined by outside influence. The study participants consistently overestimated how much was outside influence and how much was their own choices.

    In other words, if there’s a difference of opinion on an issue (whether or not a pregnant women is obligated to attempt to bring a pregnancy to term, for instance) the woman isn’t “lured” by one side or another, she’ll find support with whichever side she agrees with. People who try to “lure” or “council” her to change her mind, that’s going to be perceived as harrassment or attempted intimidation.

  • crowepps

    so it really would be better if you went back with Mommy and Daddy.

    Why do you assume he left?  For all we know, he may still be living in their basement.

  • crowepps

    But unfortunately it’s not a surprise.  Which is why I cannot 100% support the idea that Choice includes the unfettered right to have children.  Some people do not just lack the mental health capacity to be good parents, they are known to have mental health problems that make them toxic parents and under our system their children suffer the consequences.

     

    Your description of the behavior of “histrionic and borderline” women sounded like both my mom and her mother.

  • crowepps

    As a reader of history, I’ve got to say that there sure didn’t seem to be any lack of sexual libertinism before abortion became legal. Just reading the vigorous opposition in England over increasing the age of consent at which parents could sell their daughters into prostitution from 9 years old up to 12 demonstrates that pretty conclusively.

     

    I find it really puzzling that so many ProLife advocates are just SURE that the motivation behind advocating that abortion remain legal is all about sex, sex, SEX! Personally, my advocacy is about women remaining alive. But then, I think a lot more about women and the risks of pregnancy than I do about sex.

     

    You sure can tell a lot about people by where they choose to focus their attention.

  • lbsimon

    I see that group-therapy for the walking wounded is proceeding along nicely!

  • lbsimon

    Because it was illegal to do so.

  • crowepps

    Which is that women have no moral agency of their own, that women don’t freely ‘choose’ to have sex, that instead debased people are taking advantage of girls/women and corrupting them away from the ‘pure’ state in which they have no natural, biological physical drives or desires.

     

    Since ‘good’ women only engage in sex because they want to have children and therefore a woman could never have an actual REASON to want to end a pregnancy (choosing in extremis to die a ‘noble death’ for even the potential of children), that OBVIOUSLY means women who consider abortion are victims being coerced (needing rescue), too stupid to know what they’re ‘really’ doing (needing rescue),  or,  ipso facto, BAD women (whose evil acts must be prevented).

     

    None of this, of course, is considered by the believer in the paradigm to be misogyny, because they have the greatest respect for the holiness of the mythical ‘good woman’, and their boundless contempt and open scorn for the inferior real women with whom they actually interact isn’t REALLY contempt for women but instead ‘rejecting evil behavior’.

     

    You can see this clearly when they use exactly the same logic trainwreck to argue that they don’t actually hate gays, it’s the BEHAVIOR of which they disapprove.

  • crowepps

    This may be a surprise to you, but many of us here have mothers who actually WANTED to have children!

  • lbsimon

    the advent of Feminism, wasn’t it?

    BTW, how do you know they truly wanted you and weren’t just forced by law, religion or tradition to have you?

  • crowepps

    Feeling insecure about your mom’s commitment to you?  Counseling can help! 

  • ahunt

    Actually Eric…some of us are simply indifferent,  and do not consider the size of anyone’s family a matter that concerns us.

     

    Absolute sexual license? Not following. Can you get us from believing that women are moral agents capable of managing their reproductive lives to “absolute sexual license?”

     

    Perhaps you might want to begin with the definition of “absolute sexual license.

  • lbsimon

    but YOU! What does that tell you? If you weren’t able to hang out on this website all day long, what exactly would you do? Besides talk with your friendly neighborhood moose, that is?

  • ahunt

    Nonsense crowepps. Roe v Wade must be overturned because all US women of childbearing capability have ceased having children.

  • ahunt

    As I understand, crowepps is a mother, grandmother, employed as a court reporter, an avid reader and crafter…and approaching her golden years.

     

    Other than that…she has no life.

  • crowepps

    When did I say I don’t need help?  We all need help sometimes.

     

    Since you’re so interested, I’ll share that I post when I’m at work, during breaks taken when I can’t stand listening to one more minute of attorney-speak.

     

    Moose are not friendly.  Moose are dangerous.  We keep a healthy distance or a window between moose and us at all times.  The babies they’ve been having the last couple weeks are absolutely adorable, though!  My daughter got great pictures of a set of newborn twins hanging out in her front yard.

  • bei1052

    I’m sure rebellious grrl wouldn’t know irony if carried around a big, flashing neon sign which read “IRONY!” with an arrow pointing downwards.

     

    At any rate, who is this “we” you speak of? I ask, because it’s certainly not the majority of Americans. I’m convinced that most pro-choicers (at least the ones who post here) are content to live in a world of their own fashioning where they speak for all women and most people believe the very things pro-choicers love to espouse, even if neither of the aforementioned two things are correct.

     

    …And coming onto the *internet* to tell someone else they need to get a laugh is all sorts of humorous.

  • lbsimon

    that counseling would help, you implied that you were in a position to determine that … on the basis of a concept you made up, termed “wantedness” (for which no definition currently exists in any dictionary).

    First you’re smug … then you fabricate … then you’re a literalist. ROFLMAO!

  • crowepps

    So to continue being literal, how does someone asking you a question about whether you feel insecure imply that THEY are in a position to determine that you are?  Isn’t the whole point of the question/question mark to ask YOU, as the expert on your own psyche, what YOU think?

     

    ‘Wantedness’ is a term of art in psychology – googling it with psychology and definition gives 1,260 results, many of peer-reviewed articles.  Samples:
    “Pregnancy Wantedness and Child Attachment Security: Is There a Relationship?”  and  “Pregnancy Wantedness and Subsequent Risk of Neonatal Death, Violence in Childhood, and Self-Esteem in Adolescence”.

     

    It’s actually a very interesting subject.

  • jrm83

    He might also want to google “projection” while he’s at it.  He seems to be doing a lot of that as well.

  • crowepps

    We’re at the point in summer vacation where they’re boooooored and can’t find anything to do. Coming on the boards and being able to anonymously be snotty to grownups is such a thrill at that age!

  • jrm83

    So he’s here for summer school?

  • lbsimon

    “So to continue being literal, how does someone asking you a question about whether you feel insecure imply that THEY are in a position to determine that you are?  Isn’t the whole point of the question/question mark to ask YOU, as the expert on your own psyche, what YOU think?”

     

    That was not a sincere question, posed in earnest, and you know it Shifty. You’re dissociatively pretending it wasn’t an oblique slur. How clever!

     

     

  • lbsimon

    … what hack quackery! [IMG]http://i396.photobucket.com/albums/pp43/trashymctrashtrash/2vvvo9k.jpg

  • lbsimon

    …. my sincere apologies!ahahahahahahahahhahhaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa …

    ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaaaaaahahahahahahhahhahahahahaahaah

    still laughing !

  • julie-watkins

    None of this, of course, is considered by the believer in the paradigm to be misogyny, because they have the greatest respect for the holiness of the mythical ‘good woman’, and their boundless contempt and open scorn for the inferior real women with whom they actually interact isn’t REALLY contempt for women but instead ‘rejecting evil behavior’.

     

    Of course. Besides, no one wants to believe their effort is wasted, so they have to believe others can “lure” the victim women so — since the women were obviously coerced — they can try to lure her back. They try hard and usually fail, but it’s worth the effort, and, well, it possibly has a satisfaction to achieve a secondary goal: to shame and scold women who don’t act the way they want them to act.

  • amyc

    Thinking zygotes and embryos (I’ll admit I’m torn on late term pregnancies) are “full” human beings is like thinking an acorn is an oak tree.

     

     

    Why do pro-choicers constantly use this argument? You’re comparing a *stage of development* (acorn to tree) to species (the unborn to human beings). It’s like arguing that a newborn isn’t a human being because it’s not an adult. It’s rather disingenuous, and an affront to science.

     

    She specifically said two sentences before that ZBEFs are human and that it is a stage of development. What she was trying to point out is that not all ZBEFs are viable or ever actually become more than a clump of cells. She was referring to the high percentage of miscarriages/failed implantations. Her argument was that you cannot call a ZBEF a living, breathing, sentient human being (yet agreeing that it is in fact of the human species) just like you cannot call an acorn an oak tree.

  • amyc

    How hard is it for the man at your so-call “point A” to talk to the woman before hand? My boyfriend and I had no problem discussing our views on children, pregnancy, and abortion before we ever had sex. All a man has to do to avoid paying child support is ask the woman A) Do you want kids anytime soon? B) If you got pregnant right now what would you do? C) What kind of birth control are you using? D) Just for the heck of it, why don’t I put on this condom?

    You see how easy that is. Four questions! Four questions is all it takes for a man to make sure he doesn’t have to pay child support for a child he didn’t want.

    FYI: the reason most men (and women, or at least the young ones) don’t have this simple conversation before having sex, is because they don’t know they should. Any comprehensive sex class would teach young men and women about the responsible way to discuss sex with your partner. But, alas, many teens these days don’t have the benefits of comprehensive sex ed.

  • amyc

    For God’s sake, ask those questions! If you are comfortable enough with a person to be having sex with them then you should have already asked these four questions A) Are you looking to have kids in the near future, B) What would you do if you got pregnant, C) What kind of birth control are you using, D) You know what, why don’t I put on this condom? Seriously, every credible comprehensive sex ed curriculum teaches teenagers to have this conversation (and many others) BEFORE they have sex.

  • bj-survivor

    Which is why I cannot 100% support the idea that Choice includes the unfettered right to have children.  Some people do not just lack the mental health capacity to be good parents, they are known to have mental health problems that make them toxic parents and under our system their children suffer the consequences.

     

    I struggle with this, too. I would much rather a drug-addicted mess have a thousand abortions than even one child that is doomed to abuse and neglect. I would much rather that Susan Smith and Casey Anthony and all the horridly abusive, broken people who give more thought to the color of their cell phone than to their ability to care for a child terminate a thousand million pregnancies than bring forth even one child.

     

    Even when I was a Christian, I felt this way. At that time (I was a child), I wasn’t sure if abortion was murder, but I was absolutely certain that it was preferable to the unforgiveable sin of bringing forth new life that was unwanted or that one could not properly provide for. Jesus sought to ease suffering in the world, not exacerbate it! I never could wrap my mind around the idea that unwilling women should be forced to create unwanted children. How does such a thing benefit society, the mother, or the child? Obviously (at least to me), it doesn’t!

  • julie-watkins

    I’ve thought on this occasionally, also … and gave up on pragmatics. I don’t think there would be any way to do it fairly, even if it might work in theory. What kind of uproar would there be if Mr. & Mrs Self-Righteous are told: no, you’re not good parent material? As long as government is for Big Business, not the people, it would just be a big mess.

    And since it’s all impossible anyway, I think things would go better if family law — civil law in general — was more based on “best practices” rather than “legal precident”. I think rich people having big pockets to buy the court ruling they want — then that gets into precidence — then the unfairness just gets spread around under the misnomer “treat everyone the same”. (or so it seems from what I’ve read in the news.)

    If there was a way to have judges we could trust (incorruptable) and then the good of the child might have more weight, even if her/his decision restricts one parent or another. It shouldn’t be decided by which parent has more money for fancier lawyers who can go find precidence of previous questionable decisions bought by a bad parent getting custody anyway because that bad parent had a lot more money.

  • crowepps

    There have been some court cases in which the custody of a child who is handicapped in some way has been placed with the extended relative or stepparent who is determined to be most able to meet their needs, but those are considered novel decisions in special cases and, of course, are all in cases where the children already exist.

     

    I am not aware of any laws whatsoever that restrict the right of persons known to be dangerous to children, such as child murderers, abusers or habitual pedophiles, to procreate, and the laws in Poland enforcing chemical castration of pedophiles have been objected to on that basis.  Personally, I don’t think that any of those ‘classes’ should have the right to, so to speak, ‘create their next victim’.  There are some areas where people just should not have a right to a ‘do-over’.

  • bj-survivor

    there isn’t any way to do this fairly, which is why I am pro-choice. I just don’t have the authoritarian, misogynist mindset of the forced-gestation idiot brigade. Nor that of an authoritarian , misandrist mindset which would reverse the current sexism and instead put the blame squarely on men, gelding and imprisoning them should they impregnate females and then refuse to provide care or financial support for the resulting children that are born (okay, I’ll admit that I DO fantasize about it! ;).

     

    I do think there are things we could do to mitigate, though never entirely defeat the problem. I believe that we can do a LOT better at protecting children than we currently do. Being poor is NOT a crime; being an abusive, neglectful parent IS or should be, anyway. Rotten parents should not get the seemingly unlimited chances to fuck up their children that they currently do.

     

     

  • kchan23

    paragraphs goddamn it! USE them!

  • crowepps

     I’ve made the offer before, but for some strange reason, when it comes time to sign on the dotted line, I fail to see the signature.   For some strange inexplicable reason, advocates never want to risk

    Faultroy, don’t have time to waste responding in detail to your typical ‘Wall of Text’ (bizarre facts always totally unsubstantiated) but I’ve got to say, the reason people don’t want to exchange e-mails with you is that unfortunately your posting style is that of someone who is both obsessive and violent, and what they are wary of risking is not their ‘financial future’ but having you know where they live.