The Anti-Choice Movement Is a Denialist Movement


The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) released a report this month recommending that “unnecessary restrictions on abortion should be removed and governments should provide access to safe abortion services.” It’s not really a big surprise—UNFPA has been making solidly pro-choice recommendations for a long time now—but perusing the document, I realized the thing that really jumps out is how much this recommendation is based on facts and research; the report looks at abortion through a public health lens instead of through an ideological one. While the UNFPA wants to reduce the overall abortion rate—and the group recommends the fact-based method of improving contraception services to get there—it accepts as fact that not every unwanted pregnancy can be prevented. Uruguay is held up as a country that has made great strides in reducing the maternal mortality rate by decriminalizing abortion, bringing its maternal mortality rate from unsafe abortion down to zero.

What becomes clear is that the abortion debate has shifted away from being a clash of values and is now better understood in many ways as a struggle between the evidence-based worldview and the fantasy-based worldview. Just as evolution happened and climate change is a man-made phenomenon, the fact that safe, legal abortion is necessary for women’s health and safety is unassailable, if you have respect for reality. Which means that anti-choicers shouldn’t just be regarded as sex-phobic misogynists, though there will always be that, but also as denialists, just as those who deny things like climate change, evolutionary theory, and the safety of vaccinations.

This isn’t to say that there isn’t a clash of values between pro- and anti-choice sides, of course. But that’s also true when it comes to other issues where denialists hold sway. The climate change battle is a fight between those who value the environment and those who value profits and convenience over long-term sustainability. The battle over evolutionary theory is between those who value scientific research and those who value arbitrary religious authority. The clash over vaccines is between those who value science-based medicine and those who appear to value their own egotistical need to feel they’re invincible against germs, or that’s the best read I have on it.

But the difference between a denialist and someone who just has a reactionary or unpleasant opinion is that a denialist realizes that their actual values are so repulsive they cannot be stated out loud, and so instead resorts to distorting or even outright lying about the facts instead. The climate change denialist will not admit to being indifferent to environmental destruction, since that’s borderline evil, but instead will claim that greenhouse gases are not a problem. Creationists do the same thing, pretending that there’s a scientific dispute to avoid admitting out loud their true motivations.

So it goes with abortion denialists. As the evidence accumulates to show that safe, legal abortion is necessary to prevent maternal mortality and injury, anti-choicers are ramping up the false claims that safe, legal abortion is the real cause of maternal mortality and injury. The favorite strategy of anti-choicers lately, most evident in Texas, is to pass medically unnecessary abortion restrictions that shut down clinics while pretending that it’s for women’s safety. It’s as if climate change denialists decided to start arguing that we need more greenhouse gases and started to pass laws requiring cars to have low gas mileage. (Not to give them any ideas.) It’s actually quite a bit like creationists fronting like they are science-based critics of evolutionary theory, when, of course, close examination shows they are just making a bunch of stuff up. Lying has become such a central component of the anti-choice strategy that the Susan B. Anthony List is suing to be able to use blatant lies in violation of campaign laws.

The thoroughly denialist bent of the modern anti-choice movement was on full display in the reaction to this UNFPA report. LifeNews.com went after this in its typical way, misrepresenting the arguments to give the false impression that maternal mortality from illegal abortion is not a big deal. It claims, based on the fact that the absolute number of abortion deaths is going down worldwide (which is because of increased contraception use, something LifeNews generally opposes), that “there is every reason to think that maternal mortality can be reduced by the full 75% called for by ICPD, and all without creating a right to abortion.”

Except that is not what the report says at all. On the contrary, the report is clear that while maternal mortality is going down overall, abortion death actually seems, percentage-wise, to be going up:

As of 2008, an estimated 47,000 maternal deaths were attributed to unsafe abortion, a decline from 69,000 deaths in 1990. But given that the number of deaths due to unsafe abortion has declined more slowly than the overall number of maternal deaths, unsafe abortions appear to account for a growing proportion of maternal deaths globally.

If LifeNews wanted to be intellectually honest, it could simply argue that a high death rate from illegal abortion is a price the site and its followers are willing to pay to send the message that abortion is wrong by banning it. (It would also admit that abortion bans are about nothing else but “sending a message,” as abortion bans are correlated with higher abortion rates.) Instead of just owning these beliefs and the consequences of them, and admitting that dead women is a price these anti-choicers are willing to pay in order to maintain sexual control and shame, LifeNews instead misleads and distorts. As with other denialists, this choice to favor dishonesty appears to be due to the fact that stating one’s moral priorities bluntly—admitting that one is more worried about policing sexuality than saving lives—makes a person seem pretty awful. So, in order to seem less awful, denialists lie. Which, ironically, makes them more awful, adding dishonesty to the list of moral transgressions necessary to uphold their ideological worldview.

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  • Arakiba

    This article hits the nail right on the head. Thank you for posting it, and showing what these anti-choice, anti-woman, anti-sex liars are all about.

  • expect_resistance

    Thanks Amanda great article!

    The anti-choicer/forced-birthers are living in a magical fantasy-land and ignore reality at all costs. They are in hardcore denial of reality right along with the creationists, and climate change deniers. What will it take for them to get a smack of reality?

    • TheBrett

      Those that do eventually come around tend to get hit by a Clue-By-Four when it hits near home, like if their daughter, sister, or lover needs to get an abortion. I’ve actually heard people talk about how they knew some ostensibly anti-abortion nurses and family members help direct family members to get an abortion in places like Texas.

      • fiona64

        There is a great site called “The Only Moral Abortion is My Abortion,” which is about how *frequently* the anti-choice seek abortions, because their case is “different.” http://mypage.direct.ca/w/writer/anti-tales.html

        • lady_black

          I love that essay. I read it years ago. Of course they think they are “different.” It’s a part of their psychosis.

          • HeilMary1

            An abortion provider recounted exactly that on C-Span: two Catholic patients recognized each other in the waiting room and started screaming, “What are YOU doing here?!” The doctor made them duke it out in a private room. Finally, they left the room together in good spirits because they agreed to car pool for their follow-up visit.

          • anja

            It often works the same for any “forced moral issue”. Alcohol, meat, pork… It’s sometimes funny to watch but mostly just frick’n scary as it shows just how weak and baseless these morals are.

    • Göran Lund

      Nothing will help since they do not live on the same planet as we others do but in a dream world.

      • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

        Ridicule works. Make funny at them. Laugh at them hard. Laughter is mightier than the pen, the sword and the law. It seems to be the only thing that penetrates their daze.

        • HeilMary1

          And public shaming and arrests over their own sex offenses and forced abortions.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling
          • HeilMary1

            Yes, and Democratic candidates should make these monsters the center of their voter education campaigns. That’s why I mention Notre Dame’s convicted molester “Father” James Burtchaell who established much of the demonization of contraception use by wives while he fondled their neglected sons!

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            I am going to look him up. Maybe I will make him Molester of the Month. HM, you are inspiring.

          • lady_black

            You have a Molester of the Month? How cool. Yeah make those worms squirm.

          • HeilMary1

            I posted some links here but they disappeared.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling
          • HeilMary1

            I’ll try again:

            http://articles . latimes . com/1991-12-07/entertainment/ca-613_1_notre-dame

          • HeilMary1

            Retired Washington Post columnist Colman McCarthy exposed Burtchaell.

            http://www . americanswhotellthetruth . org/portraits/colman-mccarthy

          • Mirable

            dansama is so dumb

            i am conversing with it using nothing but song lyrics from a playlist I recorded to CD like 10 years ago

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            I know – you have been keeping me laughing.

        • lady_black

          That’s why I even comment in Life Site. For shits and giggles.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            You are good. I got booted from that site but I follow you, so I see your comments. You are an excellent troll thumper.

          • expect_resistance

            I watched you in action there and you are good. Like Plum says “an excellent troll thumper”

        • BJ Survivor

          Ridicule works. Make funny at them. Laugh at them hard. Laughter is
          mightier than the pen, the sword and the law. It seems to be the only
          thing that penetrates their daze.

          True that. Nothing enrages an authoritarian more than being ridiculed. And since forced-birthers and other RWNJs continue to believe and say such facile things, they leave themselves wide open to ridicule.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            When they are mad, they say what they really mean.

  • TheBrett

    (It would also admit that abortion bans are about nothing else but “sending a message,” as abortion bans are correlated with higher abortion rates.)

    That would not even slightly surprise me. So much of the Christian Right’s social stances are basically “taking a stand” regardless of the merits, pointlessness, or verifiable hard of doing so (see Sex Education everywhere in Republican-dominated states).

    I almost wonder if bans will become completely pointless in the next couple of years. We’re probably not far from automated medical help applications on your computer and smartphone that could help you pick the right dosage of the Cytotec or RU-486 you ordered online or got in Mexico to take to end a pregnancy while minimizing complications. It’s still not as good as seeing a doctor about it, but better than nothing.

    • Amanda Marcotte

      Problem is that, if you have complications, they will arrest you at the hospital.

      • TheBrett

        Yeah, that worries me, considering it happened in Ecuador after they passed strict anti-abortion laws (for poor women in public hospitals). Forced-pregnancy folks generally try to avoid the public impression that they’re trying to target women with criminal penalties, though – at least in the US.

        • jruwaldt

          Yes, they think abortion should be illegal, but can’t decide whether they’ll send the poor (victimized) women to jail. If asked what the penalty should be, they hem and haw about how they aren’t politicians or judges, so shouldn’t have to make that decision. It also seems like they think identifying it as first-degree murder, second-degree murder, manslaughter, or a similar crime misses the point or cheapens the matter. Of course, most of them don’t have any understanding of the law but just know, “I don’t like it, so it should be illegal!”

      • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

        Happened to me in 1963. My Sister age 16 took quinine to abort, had her stomach pumped, the hospital called the police. We were not technically under arrest. We were interrogated while my Sister was passing out from weakness, for a long time. And then left to walk home ourselves.
        Life before legal medical abortion/contraception was a horror show for women.

        • lady_black

          That story made me cry. To think a young girl would be desperate enough to poison herself…

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            Only the truth. That is why I am grateful for comrades like you in this struggle. We cannot go back there.

        • Ineedacoffee

          How horrific, your poor sister and your poor family
          This is why abortion needs to be safe and legal

        • BJ Survivor

          FFS, that’s horrific! Thank you for sharing. We cannot go back.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            We will not go back. If necessary, we will gather the coven and operate the abortion underground again.

      • lady_black

        Only if you’re dumb enough to admit taking the pills.

        • L-dan

          Right now? Maybe. But other countries with bans see women jailed for miscarriages. It’s not like you can prove the difference between a natural and an induced miscarriage in most cases.

          You’d have trouble proving something in our legal system, but you know this would end up with ‘certain’ women being questioned and investigated and probably even tried, despite the lack of convincing evidence. Miscarriage profiling.

          • lady_black

            Yes, barbaric countries act barbaric. You can’t distinguish between someone who took pills and had an incomplete miscarriage, and someone who just had an incomplete miscarriage. The lady in PA was STUPID for admitting the use of the pills. She should have just said she had a miscarriage and something wasn’t right. I have never heard of any cases around here of miscarriages being prosecuted, because they need, you know, actual PROOF. If you’re going to give them a confession, you’re an idiot.

          • Shan

            That’s providing that they can’t detect any miscarriage-inducing drugs in the woman’s system. If they can’t, women need to know that so they don’t get coerced into confessing with “You’d better tell us the truth now before the lab results come back, otherwise you’ll get a tougher sentence” etc., (yes, I watch too much L&O, I wake up at 3-4 am and can’t go back to sleep)

          • lady_black

            Yes you DO watch too much Law and Order, LOL. Most women get through a miscarriage just fine with nary a trip to the doctor or ER. If a complication is going to arise, it will be much later, after the drugs are out of the system. The lady in PA who’s daughter had the problem, it was like 3 weeks afterward. She had abdominal pain from an incomplete abortion. She should have kept her mouth shut, and it would have been routinely treated. An early misoprostal miscarriage is like any other miscarriage, and no traces of the drug would be there 3 weeks later.

          • Shan

            Right, but…it would be good to know how long the stuff stays in the system. I mean, it’s possible to test “positive” for THC up to 45 days after ingesting it. And eating a muffin/bagel with poppy seeds will get you tested positive for opiates, not sure how long afterward. This from someone I know who has been through “the system” and HAD to know the rules (and not just in order to avoid getting caught, it was part of a mandated class).

          • lady_black

            I just looked it up. Misoprostal cannot be detected after 12 hours. Since nobody needs to go to the ER within 12 hours of the onset of a miscarriage, detection is nearly impossible, and will not show up in routine blood testing anyway. Your fears are totally unfounded, as I suspected. My guess was a day or two maximum, and I was pleasantly surprised to find out it’s actually much faster. THC is a special case, as it’s stored for a long time in body tissues, especially in chronic users.

          • Shan

            “Your fears are totally unfounded, as I suspected.”

            Excellent, thank you. I would have looked it up myself last night but I was busy recovering from a very bad day at work where I’d been verbally accosted and physically cornered (yet again) by a guy with some really vile male-privilege issues who simply can NOT accept the fact that he is not owed every single bit of attention he thinks he requires.

          • lady_black

            Have you tried telling him to piss off? You can’t be “polite” to some people. They don’t take hints, and it only encourages them. First try nice, of course. If nice doesn’t work, try not nice.

          • Shan

            I did tell him to go away, back off, LEAVE NOW. Multiple times and loudly. In an open office (no cubicles) in front of at least 2 dozen people. I think I also asked him how f*cking dumb he was that he hadn’t stepped back yet. Also, I believe I used the word “bully” at least once. Eventually he left, dragged a manager into a conference room (probably to whine about me) and then got piled on by MORE managers after they found out he’d had another episode. He’s been extremely subdued today but I don’t expect it to last because he has the typical abuser personality. He’ll be all nice-nice for a while and then something will set him off again. Yesterday, all it took was me just walking away because he was having a temper tantrum.

            Sorry, don’t mean to go so far off topic.

          • lady_black

            Hmmm. That’s stalker-creepy. They ought to fire him, and you ought to get a restraining order.

          • Shan

            Several problems. I live in an “at will” state. I work in construction and I’m a woman. We also don’t have a proper HR department. So it looks like it’s up to me to do what I did yesterday (yell at him and ream him when he offered a mealy-mouthed apology later) and today (when he tried to explain why he was in a “bad mood” all the time, just stared at him until he gave up and wandered away). Also, I’m going to find a manager tomorrow and set the record straight because I’m pretty sure they have no idea what ACTUALLY happened. Advantage is that everybody else who works there is totally fed up with his toxic negativity.

          • lady_black

            Yeah but this guy sounds really scary. SERIOUSLY. I don’t understand why management tolerates that kind of unprofessional behavior. This is the type that goes postal. Watch your back, girl.

          • Shan

            Management tolerates it because his projects always turn a healthy profit for the company.

            Okay, I’m done with the derail. Sorry, everyone! But thanks for allowing me a safe place to talk about it with people who understand.

          • goatini

            Yeah, I’ve experienced the “me income producer, you overhead” mindset before… over 20 years ago, in Texas, another glorious “at-will” state. I understand.

          • expect_resistance

            Yep, sounds like the typical abuser personality. Document everything the a-hole does. You shouldn’t have to deal with this kind of crap at work. Sorry.

          • L-dan

            Oh sure, in this case, it was dumb to admit. Though, to be honest, if it were my daughter bleeding in the ER, I’d also have worried about hiding any drugs taken for fear that it would interfere with treatment. On TV that seems to be one of the first things in medical procedurals “were they taking anything?” or they dig through pockets/purse/etc. or someone ends up worse from treatment because they didn’t know they were taking xyz, etc. So I don’t entirely blame her her for trying to be honest about it. We’re taught over and over again that you *should* be honest with doctors.

            I’m not sure why they then reported it to the police, frankly. It’s at about the level of someone offering some of their unused prescription for your similar ailment. Not wise. Doctors discourage the practice. But almost nobody is prosecuted for it.

          • lady_black

            In the case of miscarriage causing drugs, there is no difference in the treatment of incomplete miscarriage as compared to a natural miscarriage that’s incomplete. And they have no right to dig through your purse. I agree it never should have been reported to the police, even if she did confess to using the drugs. This was weeks after the fact. That was just pure nastiness on the part of staff. Usually I advise complete honesty with doctors, but what you actually know for a fact is sufficient. In this case what is known for a fact is that the daughter had been pregnant, had suffered a miscarriage (it makes no difference why) and is now having problems. Bleeding is expected in a miscarriage. Symptoms showing up three weeks later is NOT expected, but can happen in any miscarriage. The treatment is the same. Surgery to remove the un-passed remains and you can go home the same day.

          • Ella Warnock

            I understand everyone’s point about being honest so that no unwise or contraindicated treatment decisions are made, but I have found out the hard way that it’s not always in my best interest to be honest with either random or known medical personnel. That information stays with you forever, and while it may not immediately be detrimental, it can certainly come back to bite you in the ass later on.

          • lady_black

            The treatment for incomplete miscarriage caused by abortion drugs and incomplete miscarriage “just because” are exactly the same. The doc cleans you out with a D&C. It’s really THAT simple. The drugs carry the same risks as a spontaneous miscarriage, because there has been no invasive procedure done. The embryo or fetus dies and the woman’s body ejects it.

  • LisaC

    They won’t say it out loud, but a lot of anti-choicers clearly believe that women who die during abortion had it coming.

    • Lindsay

      Most won’t say it out loud, but some will. I have come across anti-choicers who have said that the babies saved by making abortion totally illegal in the US would be more than worth the (bad) women who would die from illegal abortions.

      • L-dan

        Most won’t say it out loud because they know only a small percentage agree with them, and they don’t want to piss off the larger number able to be swayed toward their position on items up for public vote. Personhood amendments keep getting voted down once the truth about what they would do is made clear, for example.

    • Kathi J

      I’ve heard many of them say a woman dying from an abortion deserved it and others who believe all women who get abortions should be prosecuted for 1st degree murder and executed.

      • fiona64

        Yep … which goes to show just how “pro-life” they really are.

    • lady_black

      Yeah they do think that.

      • HeilMary1

        They also believe women who die in childbirth also deserved death just for having marital sex!

        • Ella Warnock

          Yep, no sex for you if you’re not willing to make babies! Got to suffer those “consequences” they’re always bleating about if you’re going to have the audacity to ENJOY sex with your husband.

          • lady_black

            Yeah I just laugh at them and tell them to go get stuffed.

    • paganheart

      Yep. My father-in-law was a medical resident in Detroit in the 1960s, when women and girls turned up in the ER on a pretty regular basis, bleeding to death or dying from massive septic infections due to illegal abortions. And he vividly remembers a few times when nurses and even doctors came into the treatment room and, upon finding out what was going on, turned around and left, refusing to help. In one case, when he yelled for a fellow resident to come help him save a 14-year-old girl who was bleeding out, the man looked him in the eye and said, “No. That wh*re deserves to die,” and left the room. Ah, the “Good Old Days.” (NOT!!!) Because of incidents like that, my father-in-law, a man who is otherwise conservative as they come, is also militantly pro-choice, so much so that if abortion were to be made illegal again, he would perform abortions underground, even if it meant prison. He raised a son who is virulently pro-choice as well….for whom I am very grateful. :)

  • Donnie McLeod

    I have started to use those who have a false perception of reality can not change their thinking because of our fear based thinking process, system 1. Google “Thinking, Fast and Slow”

    • Mirable

      They fear non existence. They fear women having the power over life and death.

      • Jennifer Starr

        I actually once had a pro-lifer tell me that death was not a part of life. That was serious denial.

        • lady_black

          Oh wow, seriously?? So being pro-life means running from death? I have news for them. Death is as much a part of life as being born. Death doesn’t scare me. Dying in pain scares me.

        • expect_resistance

          What? How can someone not understand that death is part of the life cycle? They are living in an alternate reality of fiction to believe that.

          • L-dan

            These are the same people who are fucking terrified of evolution. They are the special people of God, not animals tied to the earth and the cycles like other dumb brutes.

          • Mirable

            Yeah. The idiots over at SPL keep saying that ‘humans deserve special rights and have intrinsic value precisely because they are exceptional creatures, cuz nature made them that way’

            sure doesn’t sound like a secular argument now, does it?

          • L-dan

            We ‘deserve’ special rights because we’re on top of the heap and can give them to ourselves, really.

            If we’re stupid enough to do so at the ultimate expense of the rest of the planet, we get to find out just how well we can do that “I’m not part of this world” stuff.

          • lady_black

            No, it doesn’t. I think humans are highly intelligent animals, but we ARE animals, and pretty weak ones at that. We’ve managed to thrive because of our superior intellect that allows us to thwart nature. What you’re saying sounds suspiciously religious to me. There is no such thing as “secular pro-life.” Scratch the surface and they’re all brainwashed religious nuts.

          • Mirable

            Yeah, the dude who writes the essays on human exceptionalism just happens to be a ‘secular’ pro-lifer who is also a Christian! But trust him, he ONLY uses secular arguments:P

            http://blog.secularprolife.org/2014/02/intrinsic-vs-instrumental-value.html

            You will get a laugh out of this too…someone is echoing PJ4’s pronouncements that pregnancy cures all ills:

            http://blog.secularprolife.org/2014/02/best-parasite-ive-ever-heard-of.html

            Yes, I am posting these links here so the denizens of RHRC can haz a laff at SPL.

          • BJ Survivor

            Yeah, I really love the new forced-birther/RWNJ tactic of spouting a religious argument, but not saying “Jesus” or “God” so they can claim it’s a secular opinion. Like the religiosity isn’t as transparent as glass.

  • lady_black

    No, LifeNews actually believes that making abortion illegal would make it go away, because abortion is a “service.” Sort of like making prostitution illegal makes it go away. LMAO. I advised them to drive by the red light districts in their cities to prove that untrue. All cities have them, and they are the worst kept secret in town. A few of them are fans of contraception and sterilization. Many of them say they “don’t like” hormonal contraception because of the potential of a fertilized ovum not implanting. I’ve pointed out that’s just too bad. If a fertilized ovum doesn’t implant, then mission accomplished. I do see a lot of denial over there. Denial of human sexuality, and denial of the humanity of women.

    • Shan

      I looked in and just couldn’t take it for long. I don’t know how you can keep replying to those people, it’s so disheartening and infuriating at the same time. You must be amazingly stoic.

      • lady_black

        I credit my experience raising ADHD boys, and taking care of Alzheimer patients. You have to have a sense of humor, or you’re dead. :)

        • Shan

          Your comparison made me LOL. Now I feel evil. Sort of.

          Okay, not really.

      • L-dan

        I have the same response there. I can only look so long at the vile excuses for reasoning and the severe cognitive dissonance.

    • L-dan

      I glanced at that one. I just…can’t wrap my head around their attitude.

      Due to the lack of ovulation, those on the pill actually see fewer fertilized eggs that fail to implant. But somehow making it harder for them to implant = murder. It goes right past the argument that abortion is different because you’re directly killing something…you’re not even allowed to simply tip the odds of a natural event in your favor

      This makes me even more certain that the whole ‘direct killing is morally different from allowing to die’ argument isn’t even made honestly, since they’re against even that in this case.

      • Shan

        “the whole ‘direct killing is morally different from allowing to die’
        argument isn’t even made honestly, since they’re against even that in
        this case.”

        That’s why they haven’t made any arguments against the laws that allow parents to refuse anything other than palliative care to infants born extremely prematurely or are unviable. But they support the 20wk abortion bans that force women to carry unviable pregnancies to term, give birth, and then watch their babies die. Oh, and watch them die in all the pain and suffering the 20wk bans are supposed to prevent.

        • L-dan

          This is one reason my friend who is a nurse was so horrified by the Munoz case. They would have considered it unethical to even try offering an attempt at life-saving measures to a fetus delivered at 14 weeks. So the grossness of literally using a woman’s corpse as an extreme (and very expensive) form of life-saving measure just struck her as disturbing on so many levels she could barely articulate them.

          If they really thought that the pain and suffering of fetuses was paramount, they would be advocating for mandatory C-sections. If a 9 month fetus can feel everything (rather than being anesthetized by the conditions in the womb as currently suspected), imagine how excruciating birth is. The crushing on every bone and organ, the skull deforming, etc. So for most of them, even the pain and suffering isn’t something they’re arguing honestly about.

          • lady_black

            I was horrified by the Munoz case because I have cared for a patient who was brain dead and on a ventilator. I feel really bad for the staff in that case who had to “care” for her. I can best describe it as disgusting. Even with ventilation and a heartbeat, the body knows what happened. The body is cold to the touch and immobile, with tissues breaking down all over the place. Eventually, they lose the ability to digest their tube feeding as all the organs begin to fail, and the stench of death is in the air, even with the best of odor control machines running 24/7. Of course, the forced birthers will tell you that nothing of the kind happens, and brain dead people are not rotting. I know what I saw, and I know what my 5 senses were telling me. I can’t imagine what Mrs. Munoz poor family was going through, seeing their daughter and wife slowly decomposing in front of them, and they couldn’t even take her and give her a decent burial. Then you have those on pro-life sites saying dumb things like they will adopt “the baby.” These folks are insane and cruel. I was glad the judge put a stop to that horror show.

          • Mirable

            Remember that dude who compared Mrs Munoz to a fishbowl? Yeah…that’s what we are dealing with here

          • Ella Warnock

            Nooo, I didn’t catch that one. Whaaat?

          • Mirable

            An arrogant secular pro-life philosophy student dude compared Marlise Munoz to a fish that merely needed to be ‘fed’ while the owners were away. And that if you set up the fishbowl to have food dumped inside it automatically, the fish will survive. Therefore, the Munoz situation is just like that of goldfish in a bowl while the owner is out of town.

          • Ella Warnock

            That’s just . . . ugh, I just can’t. They’re always going on and on about choicers attempting to “dehumanize” by referring to zefs as zefs. So I suppose they don’t see a fishbowl as dehumanizing a woman. Oy, it’s only noon and I could use a drink.

          • Mirable

            OH oh ! But, he says he uses terms like ‘gravid’ – which dehumanize the woman – to make a point – the point being that we dehumanize the zygote by not calling it a baybee!

          • Ella Warnock

            But a woman IS a woman, and a zygote IS a zygote. Sheesh.

          • lady_black

            Only in this case, the goldfish is dead, and stinking up the place. And instead of burying the dead goldfish, the “caregiver” just keeps feeding it.

      • Mirable

        A priest, on Dogma Debate (podcast) said that it would be morally defensible to let your kid die by refusing to give them an organ donation, because a) you were not responsible for the child’s illness 2) the illness is natural

        However, when asked if an emergency c-section should be FORCED on a woman giving birth to save the prenate’s life, he said well yes, c-section should be forced on a woman, whether she wants it or not, to preserve the life of the baybee.

        The interviewer then pointed out that natal death during childbirth = NATURAL. So, why the double standard?

        • Shan

          “So, why the double standard?”

          It’s not a double standard (i.e., doesn’t induce any cognitive dissonance) when one believes that it’s “natural” for women to get maimed during reproduction.

          • Mirable

            Exactly. Pregnancy – it’s what women are for. This is one reason why so many people have such a hard time even thinking that pregnancy might be harmful, that it might not be all kitties and buttercups – because goddamn it, life is beautiful, and it’s what women were made for! It’s NATURAL!

          • Ella Warnock

            It’s also merely “inconvenient.”

            When I found out what pregnancy and childbirth really entailed, plus just not being into kids, I vowed never for me. I don’t care what antis say about not caring whether one chooses to never conceive, most of them just don’t trust women who have opted out. Because all women lurrrve babies.

          • Mirable

            A very deluded woman over at Secular Pro Life just told me that she would have no need to be a pope or a bishop..when she could be a mom instead! (this was after she said the RCC considered women to be equals)

            This is the same person who, a few months ago, said that women were worthless unless they could haz baybeez with the only female body part that matters – the uterus.

          • Jennifer Starr

            There was a Russian man who once posted here, who claimed that only mothers could be considered women. All kinds of wrong with that statement.

          • expect_resistance

            I hate that crap. Like only “real” women reproduce. Gross.

          • expect_resistance

            Can you post the link? (Sorry, I have slower than dial-up internet access and searching takes forever.)

          • Mirable
          • expect_resistance

            Thank you.

          • Ella Warnock

            Sounds less like a desire to parent and more like some OCD control freakiness. She just needs a legitimate reason to go on a power trip.

          • lady_black

            Well are you absolutely sure she has any particular use other than having babies? These people don’t tend to be the brightest Crayola in the box. Many have babies because they can’t think of anything better to do, and they were raised that way.

          • Mirable

            Good point

          • goatini

            That’s EXACTLY the RCC party line on gender “equality”: Women can’t be priests because men can’t be pregnant, therefore “equal”. I kid you not. This is when they get into spouting all the flowery, convoluted nonsense of Wojtyła’s misogynist jihad, Mulieris Dignitatem – in which he clearly asserts that women’s “dignity” is ONLY as chattel property breeding livestock – stating that women’s “genius” resides in the uterus.

          • Shan

            That makes my brain hurt even TRYING to understand it.

            That reminds me, I need to call my folks and thank them again for NOT churching us.

          • goatini

            I have absolutely NO doubt that I would have been a more confident, self-assured person, had I not grown up as a female in the Roman Catholic Church. The term “recovering Catholic” is no joke.

          • lady_black

            From another recovering Catholic, Amen.

          • expect_resistance

            Me too.

          • HeilMary1

            If my mom hadn’t been Catholic, she wouldn’t have disfigured me and outsourced dad to hookers.

          • HeilMary1

            Another of his moral whiplash whoppers went something like: it’s not a sin to desire the same sex, but it is if you act on it; likewise, it’s not a sin to have sex with one’s opposite sex spouse, but it is if you desire it. Desiring one’s spouse is ADULTERY! Passionate fidelity is adultery! Who knew?

          • expect_resistance

            Another “opt out” here. I knew from an early age I did not want to have children.

          • Ella Warnock

            Childfree fist bump.

          • expect_resistance

            :)

          • goatini

            Same here.

          • HeilMary1

            Ditto.

          • lady_black

            I haven’t seen too much of that. Most of them don’t care if a woman never conceives, except for the birth rate fetishists. They’re a special kind of crazy, mostly rooted in racism.

          • L-dan

            I *hate* that shit. Arsenic is natural. Cholera is natural. Malaria is natural (and has evolved with us for a good long time). None of these are *good* for you.

            Sadly, many of these are the same idiots going “vaccines are baaad” for you. I mean, they’re using the naturally developed processes of our immune system (and in a slightly safer way than ‘natural’ ways of developing immunity at that).

          • lady_black

            That’s a common fallacy called Appeal to Nature. Of course, “nature” is brutal and we don’t need to bow to what’s “natural.” We’ve been thwarting nature since our ancestors left the hunter-gatherer lifestyle and took up agriculture. With modern medicine, we are thwarting nature all the time. No one ever tries to argue those are bad things (with few exceptions, such as the anti-vaccine movement and forced birthers.)

        • lady_black

          That’s a *real* hypothetical because it will probably not happen. Anyone who gets that far (to viability) obviously wants a baby. If the pregnancy needed to end (because of say, pre-eclampsia) and there was no time to allow a natural birth, most women will not refuse a C-section. I’m of the opinion that nothing should ever be forced upon any adult, regardless of consequences. People have a right to die, when it comes right down to it. And yes, a fetus that dies of complications of childbirth IS a natural death. It happened to my sister’s friend when the cord wrapped around the baby’s neck. Very sad.

          • Mirable

            Well, there are cases where women who have preferred a VBAC over a c-section, and the doctors have had the women *arrested*. In those cases, the priest would have agreed with the arrest and forced c-section.

          • lady_black

            As I said, no medical procedure should be forced upon any adult. They live with the consequences of their refusal. It should never be a cause for arrest, or the use of force. That’s barbaric.

          • L-dan

            I think I’d qualify that with ‘adults of sound mind’. Though then it’s getting into some grey areas that can be troubling.

          • lady_black

            You know that requires a court decree and appointment of a guardian, right? It’s not easy to get. The courts are loathe to remove self-determination rights away from people, even when they make unwise decisions. Merely making bad decisions doesn’t make a case for a finding of incompetence, and anyone who has not been adjudicated needs to be assumed competent.

          • L-dan

            Oh sure. It does (and definitely should) require a high bar for declaring someone so incompetent that they can’t decide on medical procedures. There are enough stories of over-reach here to be troubled that the bar isn’t high enough.

            I’m thinking more of emergency situations, where I suspect it does happen with some regularity, since they’re generally going to err on the side of saving someone’s life. I sort of assume there’s something there that covers ER personnel trying to work on the very injured person who’s drunk/on drugs/in the middle of some kind of altered state and telling everyone not to touch them.

          • lady_black

            You might think so, but that isn’t so. If someone is telling you not to touch them, you may not touch them. It doesn’t matter if they’re impaired. Look at the nut down in Kentucky who died of a rattlesnake bite while “snake-handling” in his church. The paramedics had to leave. They came back, but he was already dead. Had they found him unconscious, the legal “assumption” would be on the side of first responders, and care would have been given. These are issues faced by first responders, and medical personnel every day. You can try to reason with them, and tell them why it’s in their best interest to comply, but if they say no, it’s no.

          • Mirable

            A few months ago, RHRC reported on a story whereby it is now illegal to grope pregnant women’s bellies. It is now classed as assault. Apparently the woman in question had a neighbour who could NOT keep his hands off her abdomen. Fucking sickos. And it just goes to show you how pregnant women are viewed as public property.

          • Jennifer Starr

            I’ve never been pregnant, but if I was, the thought of a stranger touching and rubbing my stomach without asking just completely creeps me out. I don’t like strangers touching me without permission anyway, and certainly not when I’m pregnant.

          • Mirable

            when u spread ur legs and get the pregnant u haz already consented to hazing your belly rubbed, s2ut!

          • Jennifer Starr

            Yeah and at that point they’d be consenting to a punch in the jaw, It might hurt my hand, but it would all be worth it. Of course, I’d be courteous and ask them to take their hand away first :)

          • HeilMary1

            For many years, my burned skin produced no oil, so I had to slather on greasy shiny medicine to prevent painful cracking and bleeding. Disgusted strangers would often run their fingers down my face and shoot embarrassing close-up pics.

          • L-dan

            People can be so fucking creepy. Not to mention goddamn rude. WTF?

          • BJ Survivor

            WTF?! How could anyone ever think that would be at all okay?! If I witnessed someone doing such a thing, I would go off on them. I cannot imagine tolerating something so rude and cruel. Only a soulless asswipe would even consider doing such a thing.

          • lady_black

            I might smack someone who did that to me. I asked permission to touch my own daughter’s pregnant belly. Violating boundaries is creepy behavior.

          • L-dan

            OK, now I’m even more annoyed that someone tripping with a gunshot wound has more right to wave off treatment than a pregnant person who doesn’t want a C-section does. That’s messed up.

          • Shan

            Oh, yeah. Google the phrase “Arrests of and Forced Interventions on Pregnant Women in the United States, 1973-2005: Implications for Women’s Legal Status and Public Health” for some examples.

          • lady_black

            I’ve read many of the accounts and as a nurse, it’s disturbing to me.

          • Shan

            As it should be. The laws that were ostensibly enacted to protect pregnant women are instead being used to prosecute them.

          • L-dan

            I can see a doctor saying they refuse to take on the risk of a VBAC after C-section patient, particularly in cases of multiple C-sections. But there is never any cause to force one. That’s just gross.

          • lady_black

            My doc was willing to take that risk. She was wonderful. That plan went well until my daughter assumed the breech position and stayed that way. Then she said it was too dangerous and I agreed. I don’t think I’d want to try a frank breech (butt first) delivery even without a previous C-section. Too many things can go wrong, and too much risk to the mother

      • lady_black

        Yes I even told one of them about that and got her to agree with me. I said who will lose more zygotes, the women who ovulates, or the woman who doesn’t ovulate? And she AGREED with me.

        • Mirable

          Once you start s!ut-shaming, you can’t go back!

        • L-dan

          But couldn’t quite bring herself to agree that this meant being on contraceptives was, on balance, better than not being on them. (unless she did later, I can only read so much there). It’s mind-boggling.

    • Ineedacoffee

      Went to have a sticky beak at this lifenews
      My head hit the desk so much I have a baseball on my forehead now
      Bunch of loons

    • Ineedacoffee

      They didnt like my comments
      Ive been banned after only 3 lol

      • lady_black

        I keep thinking I’ll get banned. But it doesn’t happen.

        • Ineedacoffee

          They didnt like me pointing out the fact that Charlotte Dawson’s suicide was not solely cos she had an abortion in 99 or that it wasnt the sole cause of her depression
          They didnt like the fact that I pointed out she was a victim of horrific online abuse to this day over everything from her looks, age to her mental health
          Cant let facts get in the way of a good rant over there though

          • lady_black

            From what I’ve read, it was all about the harassment online. She even left a note to that effect on a previous attempt.

          • Ineedacoffee

            Yeah thats it, she tried to stand up to the online haters, did tv interviews and everything. In the end they got to her like a tweet of hers from a previous attempt
            ‘you win xx’
            Her efforts to stand up for victims of bullying were amazing

      • Jennifer Starr

        I was banned for saying that brain dead is really dead. I also was called an ‘evil pro-abort feminist robot’.

        • Ineedacoffee

          lol
          How dare you state facts!
          Wonder how much brain power they lost thinking up ‘evil pro abort feminist robot’

        • Shan

          ‘evil pro-abort feminist robot’ !!!

          I think they must have sites like the all Shakespeare Insult Generator ones. I’m surprised whoever it was didn’t throw in the word “scut” for good measure.

    • Ella Warnock

      You tilt at windmills beautifully. ;->

      • lady_black

        Every once in a while, I get one of them to think. Believe it or not, they aren’t ALL insane. Just most of them, and those I laugh at.

      • Mirable

        I read LB vs LAN just to hear PJ4 accuse LB of being a racist, genocidal maniac. And of course, to hear PJ4 proclaim that pregnancy cures all illness.

        • Shan

          Ack! PJ4 is a spittle-flecking nutjob! Makes my teeth hurt just remembering his posts.

          • Mirable

            Her.

          • Shan

            That just makes it worse…

        • Ella Warnock

          PJ4 is so unhinged. I feel sorry for those perfect kids of hers.

          • Jennifer Starr

            Assuming they actually exist. I’ve watched many kids over the years, good kids all, in my opinion–but I’ve never met kids that perfect, who never drop anything, break anything, spill anything etc. It reminds me of a TV movie from my teens–The Stepford Children.

          • Ella Warnock

            If they exist and are “perfect,” you’ve got to wonder what she’s doing to make them that way.

  • Mirable

    About the s1ut shaming element to the PL movement, I came across these two quotes on another blog, and I would like to share them:

    “”I’m a little scared to jump in here, but the theme is being honest about sex, right?
    After I gave birth to my daughter in 1987, I suffered PTSD, actual trauma, after labor and childbirth. For quite a while, I associated sex with childbirth, to such an extent that just the thought of sex terrorized me. I didn’t talk about it though and I wondered if what I was feeling was at all “natural”.
    When my daughter was about 2 months old, however, I was taking a walk to the grocery store when I came upon a woman pushing a tram with her two children. One baby looked about my daughter’s age, 2 months, and the other baby looked about 9 months old. I looked at the children, and then at the mother, and I blurted out “weren’t you terrified?” She looked at me, and said “Yes!” with such vehemence that it took me aback while at the same time, validated my own fears. She continued “But my husband … [she shrugged] … just didn’t understand my fears … .” I asked her, “So, what was this pregnancy like, with that fear … and … childbirth … ?” She said it all was just terrible. Traumatic. Nightmarish. We looked at each other, two women who had connected accidentally, over terror of sex after labor and childbirth. Knowing exactly what the other was thinking and feeling. But *no one* ever talked about this.
    So, I started thinking about my grandmother and the way she talked about sex and pregnancy, labor, childbirth. She was born in 1915, in a small farming town, when women still died in childbirth (and for a myriad of reasons. I shouldn’t leave out infant mortality, but bear with me). She always had this haunted look in her eye when she talked about such things, and she spoke in a hushed, slightly tremoring voice.
    And I started wondering whether she had associated sex not just with fear, but with death. If she did, I wondered whether women her age actually thought sex was a sin, (e.g., that women who had sex drives were shameful), when in fact it might just be a cover for what women didn’t want to talk about: sex associated with death during labor and childbirth. To make this clearer, maybe she felt that women who liked sex were basically a little nuts, because if you had sex and got pregnant you really could die — and so … therefore, liking sex was ignoring a harsh reality. Which women didn’t talk about. What if being afraid of pregnancy and childbirth was shameful, made you less of a woman, and you weren’t a “strong” woman if you had these fears? Or if there were religious connotation that because of original sin, women had to labor during childbirth and that was just life? What if shame was just a cover for being scared to die? What if shaming women for liking sex wasn’t about shame at all, but fear of death?
    I don’t know. I had a Medieval history prof (in the early 80’s) who said that Catholic priests preached against sex for pleasure, in an attempt to keep men from impregnating their wives too often. Because, women died in childbirth, or after having too many children; and the death of a woman who left 6 children motherless was a tragedy. So, priests preached the shame of sex to save women’s lives. I wasn’t sure if the prof was trying to update his lecture for the sake of paying lip service to this new movement called feminism but after I gave birth myself, I had to wonder.
    Of course, I can’t go back and talk to women from hundreds of years ago, and I can’t talk to my grandmother, who passed away in 2004. I know that, even today, PTSD after childbirth isn’t talked about widely, and if it is, it doesn’t always address sex as a specific fear. But, 26 years after the birth of my daughter, I still wonder if shaming women about their sex drive really has to do with — or grew from — fear of death associated with pregnancy and childbirth.
    I also wonder whether … women who experience PTSD after labor and childbirth, aren’t going to be silenced by memoirs like this; and feel that their fear of sex is a shameful aberration in these times when women are “free” to have a healthy sexual appetite.

    You know, as long as we’re being *honest*.””

    “”I had PTSD after childbirth too, and it’s something most people these days — including women who have easy or easier births — simply do not understand. I actually study the Middle Ages, but the experience I had — one that would have left me dead a few hundred years ago — changed how I look at the past completely. For example, while I understood that convents often offered women education and a modicum of safety, I had never before thought how appealing a life without sex might be to women who had grown up assisting at childbirths, and probably watching a good number of women and babies die. This is to say nothing of the injuries, which are *also* not spoken about.””

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2192214/Can-having-baby-Post-Traumatic-Stress-Disorder-Yes-say-mothers-suffered-flashbacks-nightmares-crippling-depression-.html

    http://www.birthtraumaassociation.org.uk/

    What breaks my heart about these stories is that one of the women didn’t have a choice. She apparently *had* to have sex again, even though she was terrified. And she had another baby. Because she probably didn’t have a choice – in either matter. And it bugs me how PL’ers will talk about how the men need to ‘take responsibility’ but that’s nothing but hot air. The man doesn’t risk life and limb and a loss of bodily autonomy from engaging in sex. And it is *expected* (especially in some evangelical circles) that women are there to serve their man as, for lack of a better word, fucktoy. She exists to be there to fulfill his sexual urges, and if she gets pregnant – it’s HER fault for spreading her legs!! There is one fellow on Patheos who believes that his wife must ‘put out’ for him sexually, but that abortion is murder. I have come across a few such men in my internet travels, and it’s clear that they only care about controlling female sexuality. The woman is there as an object – for his sexual gratification and to have his babies. Now, obviously, this isn’t true of ALL PL’ers, but, it’s still there. This attitude, to a certain extent, also explains their hatred of contraception – because contraception gives women control over their fertility.

    PL’ers act as if women are ALWAYS in a position to say no. And that if they are poor, or disabled, or in an abusive relationship, that they can just ‘have that baby’ and everything will be hunky dory cuz babies = cute!!!! Hence the ‘sex is a choice’ meme that keeps popping up. Because, you know, it’s not like power dynamics exist in relationships or anything. It’s not like many men demand sex. No, because, just like with racism, sexism no longer exists!! We are all equal! So clearly, women should just stop spreading their legs!

    • lady_black

      Some very good points you made. Number one: This is why godess invented epidurals. I was pleased to witness the birth of my fourth granddaughter this past August. Mt daughter had an epidural and slept through most of the hard part of labor. It was SO serene, compared to my own experience back in the “natural birth” movement. Natural birth?? HA! You can HAVE it. The pushing part went so much quicker too, because it’s really REALLY hard to concentrate on pushing when you’re in agony. Also another thought for the forced birthers: I was married to a man who drugged me and raped me once, because I had the flu and refused him sex. No I didn’t get pregnant, but that was the end of the marriage. I started making plans to leave that very day. I swallowed my pride and called my parents to wire me money. Then while he was at work I packed up and fled with our son. I know all too well that sex isn’t always a choice, and fear isn’t consent. But these people don’t care about rape. They still think the woman should have the baby, no matter how traumatic the thought is to her. She doesn’t matter. She’s nothing but an invisible, walking womb. People like this make my skin crawl in a feeling very reminiscent of how I felt knowing my ex-husband raped me. Like all the soap in the world won’t clean it up. It’s something you learn to live with, but you NEVER get over it. NEVER, EVER.

      • L-dan

        That’s horrific, and I’m so glad you were able to escape that shit.

        And none of that matters to them. It’s always the pregnant woman’s fault to them. So of course the precious baby shouldn’t be made to suffer because she wasn’t smart/modest/protected enough not to end up in that situation. Nevermind why an insensate blob’s ‘feelings’ matter more than the actual suffering of the one who’s pregnant.

        • lady_black

          Yes. It was my fault because I should have known that he was an abuser. Except that he wasn’t an abuser until I was pregnant with our son. I’ve heard this is common, and it makes sense. If the abuser acts like an abuser while you’re dating, he’ll never get another date. They don’t let the mask slip until they perceive that the woman is sufficiently “trapped.”

          • expect_resistance

            We make the best choices we can at the time. Please don’t blame yourself for his abuse, his actions. He made the decision to be an abuser not you. I’m sorry for what you went through. Sending you a very big hug.

            Many times, I ignored the “red flags” of abuse and brushed it off to “he’s having a bad day” or whatever his excuse was at the time. I saw him beat his dog and made excuses for him, not thinking at the time that it would be me months later. I’m horrified by my past. I think how could this have happened? After many years of therapy and a lot of work I feel “somewhat normal.”

          • lady_black

            I don’t blame myself, and this guy never beat his dog. That I would not have ignored. Except for the rape, his abuse was more on a mental and emotional level. Openly flirting in front of me, denying that our son was his, refusing to take care of our son so I could work, etc. I’m saying the pro-life wing-nuts see it that way. Women are supposed to have crystal balls and see into the future, and you WILL have that baby, because the baby is “innocent.” That kind of vile reasoning that strips women of their dignity and worth outside of their role as incubators.

          • expect_resistance

            I should have seen the “reg flags” of abuse but violence was somewhat normalized for me. Looking back I see things more clearly.

      • Jennifer Starr

        Glad you escaped–so sorry that happened to you.

      • expect_resistance

        lady_black I like what you said, “sex isn’t always a choice, and fear isn’t consent.” Having survived abusive relationships and some other eff’ed up stuff I understand. Sometimes you do what you have to do to survive. It’s something you learn to live with but your never forget. It hits me unexpectedly, like when I fell rollerblading and my first thought was remembering getting beat-up by boyfriend, years ago. The body remembers even it the mind tries to forget or recover. I have PSTD from abuse and it impacts every part of my life. I have serious trust issues and I’m hyper-vigilant.

      • BJ Survivor

        Goddess, what a nightmare, lady_black. I’m so glad you and your got out of that horrendous situation!

        I agree. Forced-birth ideology makes my skin crawl. Especially forced-birth “feminist” (gag) dogma. As if involuntary reproductive servitude could ever be a feminist ideal.

    • L-dan

      Really good points. It’s hard to say exactly what would have been going through medieval minds. But given that a lot of the sex shaming seems to have roots with Paul, I don’t know that it was really for so benign a purpose as sparing women the pain of childbirth. There might well have been individual priests who came at things from that angle, particularly those who grew up in agricultural areas and knew what happened if you bred livestock to exhaustion.

      It’s a powerful read.

      • Mirable

        Yeah, I think that this is mostly wishful thinking on her part. From my understanding, the RCC was against sex – period. But, they couldn’t stop people from wanting to have sex and make baybeez. So, they decreed that sex was ONLY acceptable for baybee making, and nothing else.

    • Ella Warnock

      My grandmother had eight kids, and I always wondered if that’s what she really wanted or if she just accepted that it was the price for loving my grandfather. My mother romanticized the idea of a large family and was disappointed that she only ended up with two. If my grandmother greatly influenced my mother’s view of parenthood, then I suspect that what she really liked was babies; kids and teenagers, not so much.

      Even as a child the notion of eight kids seemed ludicrous. My mother also romanticized motherhood. Her actions told a somewhat different story, though, and I wonder how much of my own disinterest in the whole thing was, partly, a result of how much her subconscious telegraphed a very clear ambivalence.

      • lady_black

        That’s a big problem in our society, Ella (and other societies as well). The romanticizing of motherhood. We all buy into this notion that motherhood is wonderful. It isn’t. It has it’s rewards and it’s drawbacks like anything else in life. Nobody ever tells you that though you’ll always love your kids, sometimes you won’t like them very much (and they won’t like you very much either.) Nobody tells us that children are miniature wrecking crews, or that for the millionth time you’ll have to hiss at a child who’s “mommy-ing” you to death “Can you SEE that I’m on the phone!” And they ALL do these things. Nobody tells us raising teenagers is very hard work. Therefore we have this unrealistic expectation of ourselves and our children. I tried not to over-sell the joys of parenthood to my own kids. That’s just setting them up for disappointment.

    • HeilMary1

      “…convents often offered women education and a modicum of safety, I had never before thought how appealing a life without sex might be to women who had grown up assisting at childbirths, and probably watching a good number of women and babies die….”

      Feminist theologians / authors Uta Ranke-Heinemann and Karen Armstong pointed out this scary squalidness to explain the attraction of Christian celibacy that was co-opted from Rome’s vestal virgins. Families lived in one room huts with no bathrooms, safe cosmetics, STD antibiotics, or ob/gyns for c-sections and fistula repairs. Such squalor would be much worse if arranged marriages were forced by relatives.

      Catholic celibacy is the heretic invention of closet gay husbands and playboys stuck with incontinent wives.

    • expect_resistance

      Yeh, talk about denial. I’m so sick of hearing the “Stop spreading your legs” crap. They don’t understand the power dynamics of an abusive relationship. They don’t understand what’s it’s like to be poor or having a disability. But yet they shame and blame women. It’s sexism plain and simple

      Thanks for posting. I love your lengthy posts. I have a horrible internet connection and appreciate it when you post links or story info. :)

    • Goldenblack

      Still have PTSD after birth, still have nerve damage that will never go away. I love my partner, but what is the point of sex? I have so much scarring that everything hurts. I can’t imagine willingly going through this again.

      • HeilMary1

        The RCC wants you to be injured so that you vigorously avoid sex for the rest of your life. Only priests and GOP playboys are allowed to have safe recreational sex.

  • Guest

    Maternal mortality is going down because of better access to medicine.

    • Jennifer Starr

      And? Your point?

    • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

      And better education. And better access to contraception and abortion.
      Illegal abortion is one of the foremost killers of women worldwide.

    • Shan

      Not in Texas. The maternal mortality rates have quadrupled over the past 15 years or so. I expect it to get even worse, very quickly.

    • lady_black

      Actually, the maternal mortality rate is declining in some places. But not in the United States. In the USA, it’s climbing.

    • Mirable

      Pregnancy is still not zero risk.

    • HeilMary1

      Deaths are highest in Catholic poverty pits, and the U.S. now ranks 50th in maternal safety thanks to you unholy mother-killing fetal idolaters. Did you know commonplace obstetric fistulas only became somewhat fixable 150 years ago because of Dr. Marion Sims’ gruesome experiments on slave women? Even so, 50% of mothers need Depends as they age, thereby explaining our 50% divorce rate by disgusted husbands and why the Vatican still bans priests’ marriages to “piles of dung” MOTHERS.

    • HeilMary1

      Childbirth remains the leading cause of death for women worldwide.

    • fiona64

      Actually, no. The maternal mortality rate is climbing in the US … we are #50 in the world. http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/metro/why-are-so-many-u-s-women-dying-during-childbirth/article_dd916b4b-38f0-5bae-ba42-ddee636e4cf4.html is just one of many articles on the topic.

  • Green Mug

    I’m pro-life and I disagree with your assertion.

    • Jennifer Starr

      You disagree with what about our assertion? Elaborate, please.

      • Green Mug

        I don’t think pro-lifers are liars. I think both sides here want the same thing, for people, women especially, to be live long happy lives. We just disagree on whether abortion helps or hinders that goal.

        • lady_black

          It certainly doesn’t hinder that goal, and it doesn’t matter if it helps.

          • Green Mug

            If a woman regrets her abortion, wouldn’t that hinder her ability to live a happy life?

          • Shan

            Women make lots of choices in life they may regret later. That doesn’t mean the ability to make those choices should be taken away.

          • Ella Warnock

            Everyone lives with regrets. People usually deal with them in an adult manner and move on with their lives. I know some who haven’t, and they’re choosing daily to have miserable lives.

          • Green Mug

            That is my point. To say that it “certainly” doesn’t hinder a woman’s happiness isn’t true. Abortion tends to be something women have to “get over.” People don’t need to “get over” things that are inherently good.

          • lady_black

            Who do YOU know who has never done anything they later regretted? Because I don’t know ANYONE like that.

          • Ella Warnock

            Not all women need to “get over” an abortion. Some do. Some women’s happiness is hindered; some aren’t. And that’s the reason women should gather and consider all the information and make the best choice they can at the time. That’s what we all do every day concerning any number of decisions.

          • Jennifer Starr

            That’s not necessarily true. I’ve had regrets over certain things that I’ve done, even while knowing that I was absolutely doing the right thing. The fact that you regret something doesn’t mean that it was bad or wrong.

          • Mirable

            Yeah honey…childbirth is naturally ‘good’ therefore women don’t ‘need’ to get over it..right?

            “”I’m a little scared to jump in here, but the theme is being honest about sex, right?
            After I gave birth to my daughter in 1987, I suffered PTSD, actual trauma, after labor and childbirth. For quite a while, I associated sex with childbirth, to such an extent that just the thought of sex terrorized me. I didn’t talk about it though and I wondered if what I was feeling was at all “natural”.
            When my daughter was about 2 months old,
            however, I was taking a walk to the grocery store when I came upon a woman pushing a tram with her two children. One baby looked about my daughter’s age, 2 months, and the other baby looked about 9 months old. I looked at the children, and then at the mother, and I blurted out
            “weren’t you terrified?” She looked at me, and said “Yes!” with such vehemence that it took me aback while at the same time, validated my own fears. She continued “But my husband … [she shrugged] … just didn’t understand my fears … .” I asked her, “So, what was this pregnancy like, with that fear … and … childbirth … ?” She said it all was
            just terrible. Traumatic. Nightmarish. We looked at each other, two women who had connected accidentally, over terror of sex after labor and childbirth. Knowing exactly what the other was thinking and feeling. But *no one* ever talked about this. So, I started thinking about my
            grandmother and the way she talked about sex and pregnancy, labor, childbirth. She was born in 1915, in a small farming town, when women still died in childbirth (and for a myriad of reasons. I shouldn’t leave out infant mortality, but bear with me). She always had this haunted look in her eye when she talked about such things, and she spoke in a
            hushed, slightly tremoring voice. And I started wondering whether she had associated sex not just with fear, but with death. If she did, I wondered whether women her age actually thought sex was a sin, (e.g., that women who had sex drives were shameful), when in fact it might just
            be a cover for what women didn’t want to talk about: sex associated with death during labor and childbirth. To make this clearer, maybe she felt that women who liked sex were basically a little nuts, because if you had sex and got pregnant you really could die — and so …therefore, liking sex was ignoring a harsh reality. Which women didn’t
            talk about. What if being afraid of pregnancy and childbirth was shameful, made you less of a woman, and you weren’t a “strong” woman if you had these fears? Or if there were religious connotation that because of original sin, women had to labor during childbirth and that was just life? What if shame was just a cover for being scared to die? What if
            shaming women for liking sex wasn’t about shame at all, but fear of death?
            I don’t know. I had a Medieval history prof (in the early
            80’s) who said that Catholic priests preached against sex for pleasure, in an attempt to keep men from impregnating their wives too often. Because, women died in childbirth, or after having too many children; and the death of a woman who left 6 children motherless was a tragedy. So, priests preached the shame of sex to save women’s lives. I wasn’t
            sure if the prof was trying to update his lecture for the sake of paying lip service to this new movement called feminism but after I gave birth myself, I had to wonder.
            Of course, I can’t go back and talk to women from hundreds of years ago, and I can’t talk to my grandmother,
            who passed away in 2004. I know that, even today, PTSD after childbirth isn’t talked about widely, and if it is, it doesn’t always address sex as a specific fear. But, 26 years after the birth of my daughter, I still wonder if shaming women about their sex drive really has to do with — or grew from — fear of death associated with pregnancy and childbirth.
            I also wonder whether … women who experience PTSD after
            labor and childbirth, aren’t going to be silenced by memoirs like this; and feel that their fear of sex is a shameful aberration in these times when women are “free” to have a healthy sexual appetite.

            You know, as long as we’re being *honest*.””

            “”I had PTSD after childbirth too, and it’s something most people these days — including women who have easy or easier births — simply do not understand. I actually study the Middle Ages, but the experience I had — one that would have left me dead a few hundred years ago — changed how I look at the past completely. For example, while I understood that convents often offered women education and a modicum of
            safety, I had never before thought how appealing a life without sex might be to women who had grown up assisting at childbirths, and probably watching a good number of women and babies die. This is to say nothing of the injuries, which are *also* not spoken about.””

            http://www.angelfire.com/moon2/jkluchar1995/

            So you value a clump of DNA more than a woman’s right not to suffer? Asshole.

          • paganheart

            Yes. This. Unbelievably spot-on. Thank you. ‘

            I would also add that the only woman I know who had an abortion and regretted it (a former boss of mine) was a woman who was basically browbeaten into having one. She became pregnant in high school and wanted to keep her baby, but her high-achieving, very WASP parents had her path all laid out for her and didn’t want the social stigma and shame of a pregnant teenage daughter, something that was not supposed to happen in a “nice,” two-parent, churchgoing, well-to-do family like theirs. Her father gave her an ultimatum; she would have an abortion, or she would be on her own, cut off from the family. Her boyfriend also made it clear she’d get no help from him; he told her he’d dump her if she didn’t have an abortion, because he feared having a kid would ruin his chances of getting a scholarship to college and having a pro hockey career (he went on to play in the NHL.) So reluctantly she had an abortion, and went on to go to college, marry a man her parents deemed “suitable,” and become a successful professional who–surprise surprise–is also vocally and virulently anti-abortion, because of the “deep remorse” she feels over the one she had.

            IMO, if she has regrets, it is only because the *choice* to keep her baby was taken away from her. Much the same way that many, many women who are denied the choice to have an abortion, go up to regret having their children and become terrible, abusive mothers (or suffering deep guilt and rage if they were forced to give their babies up).

            I wonder how many women who claim to regret their abortions and are now “pro life” are like my former boss, basically projecting her own issues on everyone else, and selfishly assuming that “I regret my abortion, therefore all other women must regret theirs, too?” What she fails to understand is that what she actually regrets is having her CHOICE–in her case, keeping her baby–taken away from her by others who thought they knew better than she did what was best for her. Now, she is essentially trying to do the same thing to other women. Projection is reflection.

            IMO, in many ways the abortion and birth-control fight–especially among the anti-choicers–is one of those issues where people need to grow up, become self-aware, and work through their own personal sh!t instead of projecting their issues and dysfunctions on others.

          • Mirable

            Very well said. The stigma surrounding sexuality can go both ways – to forced abortion AND forced pregnancy. It’s about taking choice away from people because one group thinks it knows whats best for everyone else.

          • Jennifer Starr

            When I was twenty-six years old, I received a marriage proposal from a very nice guy that I was dating–and after much thought and reflection I turned him down. While I liked him very much and he was a wonderful person, I ultimately realized that I didn’t love him, and I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life with him–to get married would have been a huge mistake. I’m sorry that I had to do it. I still regret that it hurt him and that I caused him pain. But I still know that what I did was the right thing.

          • lady_black

            There are very few things that are “inherently good” or “inherently bad.” Example: marriage. Everyone agrees that marriage is a good thing, right? Except that it isn’t, if you happen to be a ten year old girl named Nujood who lives in Yemen. You would very much like the world, and life, to be black and white. Who could blame you? It saves you time spent thinking. But the world and life don’t work that way. Nothing happens in a vacuum, and every experience is colored by who you are, and where you are in life.

          • Mirable

            Pregnancy is so inherently good that 20 million women worldwide are permanently disabled every year as a result of pregnancy. 1.2 mill in the usa alone. 800 dead in the USA per year, and 300k dead per year worldwide.

            Well, I guess if the women are dead they can’t regret pregnancy can they? YOU WIN

          • goatini

            “People don’t need to ‘get over’ things that are inherently good.”

            Utter and complete nonsense. For just ONE example, patients most definitely need to ‘get over’ a successful course of chemotherapy.

            You’re just making it up as you go along now, and it’s just ridiculous.

          • BJ Survivor

            Right? It took several weeks to get over my hysterectomy surgery, and the overall experience (of being rid of my fibroid-riddled uterus) was one of the happiest of my life. No more abdominal pain. No more urinary obstruction. No more worries about contraception. No more risk of cervical cancer. A vastly reduced risk of ovarian cancer (I had the surgeon remove my Fallopian tubes, because I had learned that the majority of ovarian cancers arise from them). And no more bleeding every 3-4 weeks!

            My only regret is that I never got to follow through on having my IUD removed just to get pregnant and laugh in the face of the forced-birthers as I walked into the abortuary and then walked out and took the pill in front of them.

          • HeilMary1

            Forced childbirths that grossly maim and bankrupt women, leave them with miserably disabled infants, and incite their looksist fed-up husbands to abuse, cheat on and abandon them sure leave far more regrets than any abortions. There is nothing inherently good about pregnancies that leave women with bladder and bowel incontinence, lethal face and breast cancers, organ failures, beatings, divorces, homelessness and molested-by-priests kids.

          • Ella Warnock

            No, your point is that *some* women regret abortion to the degree that they don’t function well, so *every* woman should be denied access to abortion. Hey, I got fat eating ice cream. Ban ice cream for everyone else whether they got fat or not!

          • goatini

            I’d casually estimate that 85% of the VAST MINORITY of patients that experience regret after a safe, legal pregnancy termination, would NOT feel any regret whatsoever, had they not been brainwashed and harangued by radical theocratic misogynist forced-birther LIES.

          • Ella Warnock

            Exactly. It’s actually perfectly okay to have an abortion, as long as you spend the rest of your life hanging on the cross for it.

          • goatini

            I know I’ve related here the story about some bogus “counselor” dame I heard on Catholic radio a few months ago, trolling for more dough for her phoney baloney tax-free “ministry” scam for “counseling”, ahem, so-called “post-abortive” women.

            The theocratic misogynist big (tax-free!) money scam went like this: “If you’re hurting, call me NOW to start your healing journey! And even if you’re NOT hurting – ESPECIALLY if you’re not hurting – you need to call me NOW, because you really ARE hurting, you just don’t KNOW that you’re hurting!”

            There is no difference whatsoever between the vicious lying nonsense this dame was pitching to line her pockets (tax-free), and the scams that fortune tellers do where they convince their customers that they have some “curse” that only a big donation of cash money can take away. All LIES.

          • Ella Warnock

            The notion that any sane person creating a crisis where none existed being completely ludicrous. I can’t imagine anyone with a scintilla of self-respect falling for such a thing.

          • HeilMary1

            Munchausen by Proxy psychosis was named after Baron von Munchausen who fabricated crisis so he could play act as the hero rescuer.

          • Ella Warnock

            Never thought of it that way. Excellent analogy.

          • L-dan

            You mean like relationships? (specifically romantic ones)

            Statistically, most relationships one gets into are going to end. The number of folks who end up partnered with the first person they date is miniscule.

            Most people have to ‘get over’ a breakup when one ends. And yet…we keep on thinking relationships are a good thing. So I guess we do sometimes have to get over things that most people think are inherently (or at least generally) good.

          • fiona64

            Abortion tends to be something women have to “get over.”

            Citation needed.

            People don’t need to “get over” things that are inherently good.

            You presume, therefore, that childbirth is “inherently good.” I suggest you explain your rationale to me in particular, since my pregnancy nearly killed me … and I had to ‘get over it’ on numerous levels. Should my tubal ligation fail, there will be an abortion so fast that your silly head will spin right off; I will NOT endanger my life in that fashion again. Period.

          • lady_black

            I’ve done lots of things I regret. Married the wrong person, taken the wrong job, kept toxic people in my life far past their expiration date, said the wrong thing at the wrong time, drank too much and made an ass of myself, etc. You probably have regrets too. Do you allow them to hinder your life, or do you learn from your mistakes and move on? Do you think we should make every action that might be regretted later illegal? Because some women regret having children. Should that be illegal?

          • Green Mug

            No. I don’t think we should make every action that might be regretted illegal.

            I think abortion should be illegal because it harms a child. But I think it should also be discouraged because it is bad for a woman to harm her child.

          • lady_black

            No children are harmed in a safe. legal termination of pregnancy. The only thing that happens is the removal of non-viable and unwanted human tissue from the uterus of a woman who is unwilling to be pregnant at that time.

          • Green Mug

            Here we disagree.

          • lady_black

            Then YOU should probably never have an abortion. That’s my advice to you.

          • Green Mug

            No one should have abortions. That is my advice to everyone.

            The humanity of the unborn isn’t just my opinion. It’s readily apparent.

          • Ella Warnock

            You’re certainly free to dispense your advice as much as you like. And women, of course, are free to ignore it.

          • lady_black

            It’s also readily apparent that these humans are not viable outside the body of another who is actually human too. Who are you to attempt to direct someone else? You have enough problems handling your own life. Stick to what you know.

          • Green Mug

            Okay. What I know is that human beings should never be intentionally killed. Whether they are viable or not.

            I am not speaking as an authority. We live in a society. Within that society are rules that have been agreed upon. One of those is our right to life.

          • lady_black

            You have no right to life at the expense of the body of another. You lose.

          • Green Mug

            Do you have a right to bodily autonomy at the expense of the life of another?

          • Mirable

            Yes you do. Which is why you can kill your rapist.

          • Ella Warnock

            Yep, self defense.

          • lady_black

            Yes. You can legally kill someone to protect yourself.

          • goatini

            Absolutely, if that person is threatening your life.

            A zygote, blastocyst, embryo, or fetus is NOT a person.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            The right to self defense is absolute.

          • HeilMary1

            When that life is an uninvited parasitic tumor threatening vaginal, bladder and bowel shredding, and a zillion other deadly gruesome injuries, HELL YES!

          • L-dan

            Yes. I have the right to my body even if denying the use of it to someone causes them to lose their life. I’m not required to donate blood, even if my actions put someone into a state where they need it.

            I’m not even required to risk my life holding out my hand to the person dangling on the edge of the building. It’s noble to do so, but not required.

          • fiona64

            An embryo is not “another.” It is connected to a woman’s uterus via an umbilicus and is using her organs. And yes, I have the right to bodily autonomy WRT my organs. Thank you for asking.

          • Mirable

            So if someone is raping you, you cannot ‘intentionally’ kill them to save yourself, is that what you’re telling us?

          • lady_black

            I know if I possibly COULD kill them, I would.

          • Green Mug

            Morally, your can’t intend to kill someone. You can intend to stop them from raping you, which might lead to their death as a side-effect, but you can’t kill people intentionally.

          • Mirable

            Self-defense is intentional killing whether you like it or not. And abortion = self-defense, considering what pregnancy does to a woman.

            We don’t require people to put life and limb at risk to saver others. How would you like a bowling ball shoved up your ass to save a life? I doubt you’d like to be FORCED to undergo that just to save a life. And if you were forced to do it, that would be slavery.

          • lady_black

            Oh I beg to differ. Death isn’t “a side effect.” And if you shoot someone, or hit them in the head repeatedly with a rock, or shove a screwdriver into their ear while they’re trying to rape you, I’m pretty sure you intend to kill them. But it’s self-defense.

          • Guest

            Exactly, you can’t intend to kill them. If the only means you have available to get them to stop are lethal means, you can use them, but only because your intent is to stop the rape. Your intention can’t be to kill them. Not morally.

          • Mirable

            The intent of abortion is to end the pregnancy. Because the price for having sex should not be possible maiming, death, and involuntary servitude. It just happens that the ‘undeveloped’ human organism dies because it no longer has use of the woman’s body. A right that NO human has. If I don’t have the right to use your body for my own needs, then explain why a clump of cells should have a right that I don’t have ?

          • lady_black

            That’s just made-up malarkey. If someone is assaulting you, you intend to stop them. To STOP THEM. Do you think when a cop shoots someone, they don’t intend to kill them? What does “deadly force” mean? It means you intend to kill someone, by definition in self-defense. I would be indifferent to their life, which if not done in self-defense, is actually murder.

          • HeilMary1

            Then you better criminalize “baby-killing” coffee, tea, cola, and wine consecrated by pedophile priests at your Masses, because their abortifacient properties are well known. Also, you better ban all sex with women over age 35 because they increasingly miscarry as they age.

          • L-dan

            Um no. Depending upon state, there might be a legal definition that goes that way. But morally? Intending to kill in self defense is moral by my book. Knowing myself, chances are I wouldn’t really be thinking clearly enough to have an intention beyond stopping them well and decisively, but that doesn’t mean I think there’s anything wrong with being clear-headed enough to decided that killing is the way to stop them well and decisively.

            Are you going to tell me there’s an objective morality I must adhere to or the thought police will tell me what for?

          • goatini

            The ONLY person, citizen, patient, and entity with rights in a safe, legal pregnancy termination is THE WOMAN.

          • Jennifer Starr

            This is sounding suspiciously like the doctrine of double-effect where people think it’s permissible to impair a woman’s future fertility as a treatment for a tubal ectopic pregnancy by removing the entire tube instead of using the safer and much less invasive methotrexate. Not a doctrine that I’m crazy about.

          • Shan

            Yeah, that guy made my eyes cross.

          • Jennifer Starr

            Yeah, I take serious exception to any rule that puts adherence to doctrine over my best interests as a patient.

          • HeilMary1

            She sure sounds like a brainwashed Catholic.

          • fiona64

            And that is why I used it against ze. :-)

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            We have rules that killing is acceptable in some situations: defense of self or others, execution, assisted suicide, war, police work, fertility treatment, abortion for example.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            I would abort the spawn of a rapist in a New York minute, fully aware that the embryo would die in the process. Cry me a river.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            Sure you can. Depends on the context.

          • HeilMary1

            All abortions are moral removals of bodily threats.

          • fiona64

            Well, that’s lucky. Because, you see, abortion terminates pregnancy by making the uterus inhospitable for a brief time. That the product of conception dies is secondary.

          • Ella Warnock

            Oh, I’m absolutely speaking as THE authority of what happens in my life.

          • goatini

            Rights accrue to citizens at birth. Zygotes, blastocysts, embryos and fetuses have NO rights, and are NOT persons or citizens.

          • HeilMary1

            They have no more rights than tumors.

          • goatini

            Correct.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            Your argument is bogus. Try again.

            There is no right to life. If there were, the government could execute no one.

            We have rules that killing is acceptable in some situations: defense of self or others, execution, assisted suicide, war, police work, fertility treatment, abortion for example.

          • HeilMary1

            Do you support self-defense against intruders and tumors? — because that is exactly what all abortions are: SELF-DEFENSE.

          • fiona64

            Are you a vegan who is against the death penalty? Just curious about your consistency of conviction.

          • Mirable

            The humanity is apparent is it:

            1) http://scm-l3.technorati.com/11/10/27/55025/zygote.jpg?t=20111027092220

            2) http://www.exploratorium.edu/exhibits/embryo/embryoflash.html

            Tell us how the ‘humanity’ is apparent in both photos, Einstein.

          • Green Mug

            1.) This is a living organism and (assuming it’s a picture of a human zygote) it is a genetically human living organism. Which is essentially what we are all.

            2.) The human embryo in this picture is a human being. We don’t intentionally kill those is civilized societies.

          • Mirable

            The humanity is not apparent if you have to do a DNA test, cupcake.

          • lady_black

            2) Only one of those is a human embryo. And I’ll bet you can’t tell the difference. They are all embryos. You can’t tell a human embryo from a dog embryo, from a chicken embryo. That’s the point. They all look alike.

          • Green Mug

            We don’t determine humanity based on what things look like. We base it on what they are. Something is either a human being or it isn’t, regardless of what it looks like. A deformed human being is still a human being. An undeveloped human being is still a human being.

          • Mirable

            It’s an undeveloped human, this is true. But it isn’t a person. People have BRAINS. A zygote is literally nothing more than a genetic blueprint. And until it is fully formed and functional and can actually EXIST as a sentient being, it is of less value than the woman in which it resides.

          • lady_black

            Yeah, we kind of DO determine humanity based on how something looks. The key word here is “undeveloped.” If it’s undeveloped, it’s not “a human being.” It’s human tissue. There is a difference.

          • goatini

            Your “WE” most certainly does not include me, or any other US citizen who respects the civil, human and Constitutional rights of other US citizens, particularly female US citizens.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            hu·man be·ing
            noun
            1.
            a man, woman, or child of the species Homo sapiens, distinguished from other animals by superior mental development, power of articulate speech, and upright stance.

            A human being can stand next to me on the checkout line at the market. A fetus is not a human being. If it survives to birth, it will accrue all the rights and duties of legal personhood and the status of human being.

          • cjvg

            It, however, does not have all the human rights the living have, just like a corpse or a beating heart cadaver does not have all the human rights of the living.

            It most certainly should not have rights that supersede those of actual living beings (may I remind you that a woman is a living human)
            No one already born has the right to use the body of another for their own benefit, even if the refusal to do so would cause death!

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            And they are both human beings born.
            There is a big difference between in and out, legally and medically.

          • HeilMary1

            You’d abort any fetus threatening you with face-rotting skin cancer, organ failure, sepsis limb amputations, etc. and you know it.

          • goatini

            Human beings have been born. Zygotes, blastocysts, embryos, and fetuses have not been born and are only POTENTIAL human beings.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            No it is a fetus. “Human Being” is a philosophical term and has no meaning in medicine and public health.

          • HeilMary1

            Just because your favorite priests are running out of fresh altar boys doesn’t mean we owe them the shredding of our lady parts to restock their victim supply.

          • L-dan

            When I see one of those walking down the street, I might find your position somewhat compelling.

            Of course, if one of those is walking (slithering?) down the street, the world has gone very, very wrong, and it’s probably not the first thing I”ll be concerned with.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            We certainly do kill implanted embryos selectively in fertility treatment.
            Stop lying.

          • fiona64

            How much do you want to bet that ol’ Greeny here is too embarrassed to admit that s/he thought the skink was the human embryo …

          • Shan

            “The humanity of the unborn isn’t just my opinion.”

            Well, of course when human women are pregnant they are pregnant with humans. Nobody thinks they’re pregnant with lizards. However, when I was pregnant with my daughter, it FELT like a nest of snakes at first.

          • goatini

            You are not undead; ergo, you are alive and not dead.

            The “unborn” are not born; ergo, they are potential and potential ONLY; they are NOT citizens, NOT persons, and have NO rights.

            Rights accrue to citizens at birth.

            These are FACTS that should be readily apparent to any intelligent person who respects the civil, human and Constitutional rights of other citizens.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            What is an “unborn?” Is that like The Undead?

          • cjvg

            So what makes you more qualified to make that decision then the actual woman in question?

            Science agrees that there is no child until at least 2 weeks after viability (24 weeks)

            It has now become very apparent that these so-called “regrets” of the woman you are parading about, is a straw argument that you use to obscure the fact that it is all about how you “feel” about it
            The feelings of the woman in question are obviously of no concern to you if she is not displaying the “regret” you want her to have!

          • Ella Warnock

            Truth.

          • HeilMary1

            Then may Goddess Karma bless you with pregnancies that shred your vagina, bladder, bowels, marriage, employment, and mortgage. That’ll give you a clue why abortion is humanity’s oldest emergency medical procedure.

          • L-dan

            Apparent how? Evidently I’m dense. Do tell me what defines the unborn’s humanity, by which I assume you mean ‘makes them a person.’

            I seriously can’t feel an ounce of empathy for a blastula. It’s as complex as a fish egg–interesting, but I’m not overly fussed about making sure every one of them continues development. Certainly not fussed enough that I’m going to force anyone to risk their health to ensure it gets a chance to continue developing.

          • P. McCoy

            Here is my opinion, don’t have an abortion. If you try to make it illegal for me, if you try to throw your religion onto me, then I’m coming at you ;to see that you’re arrested as a religious terrorist.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            There is NO CHILD until I make it. I get to decide when and if to do that.
            The homunculus theory went out in the Middle Ages.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            Illegal abortion is one of the four leading killers of women worldwide. Abortion is a human right.

          • HeilMary1

            Fetuses grossly maim and murder their captive hosts by the billions. ALL abortions are SELF-DEFENSE. And you probably oppose contraception and sterilization.

          • L-dan

            And I think that making a child should be a volunteer activity. We have a right to decide what is done to our bodies.

            Nobody has a right to be created.

            But, basically you’re just going to keep moving the goalposts argument by argument.

            Abortion should be illegal because it harms women!
            –nah, it’s safer than giving birth
            Well, it should be illegal because they’ll be haunted by regret.
            –really? You’re going to regulate every decision in people’s lives because it should be illegal that they ever regret things?
            Well obviously it should be illegal because it harms a child, nobody has the right to hurt children.
            –except children are born, fetuses don’t feel anything so it’s hard to argue harm, and they threaten the health and sometimes life of the one doing the hard work of gestating them. I mean, you can turn this right around and say children shouldn’t harm their mothers thus

            pregnancy should be illegal.

          • fiona64

            All children, everywhere, have been *born.*

          • Jennifer Starr

            I respect that a woman might regret an abortion, and I respect her feelings. However, that doesn’t mean that every woman will feel like that, or that we should legally take that choice away from other women.

          • lady_black

            Most women do NOT regret their abortions. Unless they’re convinced by people like you that they should regret them. Two of my relatives had abortions and don’t regret them. One was my mom, and it saved her life. No regrets there, I’m sure. One was my sister who was 17 and still in high school. She regretted being in that position, but she did the best thing at the time. She later had three children that are the center of her universe, and she’s a really great mother. She wouldn’t have been at age 17, or even age 25.

          • Shan

            Every single woman I know who’s had an abortion has gone on to have children she wouldn’t otherwise have had.

          • cjvg

            If a woman regrets her educational choices would that not hinder her ability to live a happy life?

            If a woman regrets not having an abortion would that not hinder her ability to live a happy life?

            If a woman regrets getting married would that not hinder her ability to live a happy life?

            Are you going to insist you should have the right to determine all these choices for a to you complete stranger that happens to be a woman?

            So if you make the wrong choices for her can she sue you for damages and the emotional, physical, financial and social damages your decision caused her?

          • Mirable

            A woman is not allowed to have dreams or a happy life if she chooses to have teh dirty sex. The moment a woman spreads ‘em, she has forfeited her right to her body and the right to her future. Pwecious DNA trumps a woman’s right to be happy and to choose her own identity. Cuz nature!

          • Shan

            You scared me for a second, there, Mirable. I thought I was on the wrong discussion board LOL!

          • Mirable

            Actualy, to add to that, when the woman consents to sex, she has consented to giving up her dreams/future/health etc. She made her choice!

            And as LB recently learned, life begins at erection – pre-fertilized baybeez already exist!

          • lady_black

            ROFL.

          • HeilMary1

            There was a semen nut case who stored all his spilled seed in jars. I’m never eating at his house!

          • HeilMary1

            Is Green Mug paying for all the fistula repairs needed around the world? Is she minding the millions of abandoned forced birth kids so that priests can’t molest them?

          • P. McCoy

            Does she regret it because some religious fanatic told her she should in order to get right with God, as if that person be he the pope or not thinks they’re God.

          • fiona64

            If a woman regrets having children, wouldn’t that hinder her ability to live a happy life?

            The majority of women feel *relief* after an abortion.

          • BJ Survivor

            I had an abortion 29 years ago and the only regret I have over it was having had sex with the sperm donor in the first place. I would have regretted being an ill-equipped, single, teenage mother who never got to complete her education or have the great time I subsequently did throughout my teens and 20s.

            Anyway, I’ll try to play along with your fantasy of preventing women from having any regrets. So, let’s ban childbearing because I know so, so many women who admit to regretting becoming mothers! I know many, many people who regret having gotten married at a young age and at all, so let’s ban marriage! I know many people who regret their choice of trade school/degree, so let’s just ban all education so that we can spare anyone from that happiness-hindering regret!

        • Mirable

          Pregnancy kills and maims women. Pregnancy can permanently rob a woman of her wellbeing.

          So clearly, you don’t give a flying fuck about women leading long happy lives. You value a clump of DNA over a woman’s right NOT to suffer.

          • lady_black

            Exactly.

        • cjvg

          So why do you not leave it up to the individual woman to decided what would be best for her?
          Or are you of the opinion that competent adult women just don’t know what is best for their individual lives as well as you (a total stranger) do?
          If you believe you and your ilk are better able to decide what women that are unknown to you need or want to be happy, then it stands to reason that those same unknown to you women would make better decision on whether you should be permitted to procreated or have a mandatory vasectomy!
          What is good for the goose is good for the gander. After all women do not need to know your emotional , health, financial or social circumstamces to make those decisions for you. Just like you do not need to know theirs to make their personal far reaching medical decisions for them

        • Göran Lund

          I think pro-lifers are liars. Even their labelling of themselves as “pro life” is a lie since they do not hesitate to advocate a policy that kills women en masse where it is law. And it is a lie calling oneself “pro life” when any woman does not have the right to decide what should happen with her life. You do not want women to live long happy lives. You want women to live in a subordinate position without the right to decide over their own lives, that is why pro life should be renamed anti-women.

        • lady_black

          Then what are you doing telling lies here?

  • BJ Survivor

    Thanks for another excellent expose on forced-birther “thought.”

    Ya gotta love how the forced-birthers who have infested this thread only prove Amanda Marcotte’s point. They are such caricatures.