At What Point in Pregnancy Does a Woman’s Personhood End?

“At work while pregnant? Driving? Working with chemicals or heavy loads? You better know the legal code, says Lynn Paltrow. In many states, if something were to happen to your pregnancy that could be traced to your behavior, you could find yourself dragged into jail under ‘fetal protection’ or ‘personhood’ laws.” (via GritTV with Laura Flanders)

  • Michaela Dasteel

    Would you please first acknowledge when a human being’s life begins. You don’t value someone’s life based on how it affects another. All human beings at any stage of development are persons because human and person are inseparable. First acknowledge that there are two people present when a woman is pregnant. Then, with justice and mercy, decide how they are both to be protected.

    • cjvg

      It does not matter to you when it begins, you have made up your mind and no facts will sway you from that.
      “human beings at any stage of development are persons”
      This clearly illustrates that you consider a single cell organism as just as much a person as the woman.
      That whole concept is incredibly ludicrous to anyone who has ever taken the time to look at a woman and at a fertilized egg!

      Personally I believe it begins at about 26-30 weeks of gestation.
      To explain my reasoning I will have to give you some science back ground.
      An EEG involves measuring varying electrical potential across a dipole, or separated charges. To get scalp or surface potentials from the cortex requires three things: neurons, dendrites, and axons, with synapses between them.

      The authorities accept that the end of an individual’s life is measured by the ending of his brain function (as measured by brain waves on the EEG).
      This is called clinical brain dead, at this point it is legal to begin organ harvest for transplants and to disconnect live support, no murder charges can be filed.

      Please note that this is NOT the same as no brain activity at all, since a person legally considered clinically brain dead can still have some brain activity (just not in the cortex) as well as a beating hearth etc.
      However no activity in the “thinking” (cortex) part of the brain (were your awareness and sentience originates) is present.

      It is reasonable and logical to conclude life begins with the onset of that same human brain function as measured by brain waves recorded on that same instrument.
      A fetus does not have a functional cortex before 20-24 weeks gestation, no neurons, dendrites, and axons, with synapses between them are physically present.
      Since these requirements are not present in the human cortex before 20-24 weeks of gestation, it is not possible to record “brain waves” prior to 20-24 weeks.

      Now for the 26-30 weeks point.
      Functional maturity of the cerebral cortex is diagnosed by EEG patterns.
      At 20 weeks gestation intermittent EEG bursts in both cerebral hemispheres are first seen.
      At 22-24 weeks they become sustained, and at 26-30 weeks they become bilaterally synchronous ( the pattern of a person who is alive).

      This is well after 24 weeks which is the latest that a legal abortion can be obtained.
      (barring exceptional circumstances were the mothers life is in danger or the fetus has severe abnormalities incompatible with life)
      So up to this point the only life person involved is the woman, the fetus just has the potential to eventually become equally a person like the mother already is.
      You do not have the right to mandate that another woman should have her body used for the benefit of a third person.
      What makes you believe it is alright to violate her human and civil right to the sanctity of her own body for a potential life that has not even manifested yet?!


      • Michaela Dasteel

        You said: “So up to this point the only life person involved is the woman, the fetus just has the potential to eventually become equally a person like the mother already is.”

        You are equating brain function with life. The fetus was alive before the EEG patterns emerged. It’s individual life began at a discreet point when the sperm and egg merged. I think what you are trying to say is that personhood doesn’t begin until there are brain waves of a certain pattern because when that pattern ends, doctors can harvest organs. You must realize that “life” has begun earlier. You want to say that some human lives are not persons. That’s what this whole fight is about. Are there humans who aren’t persons?

        About mandating that women’s bodies be “used” by a “third person”. That’s not up to anyone. That’s a fact of nature. That’s how we all get here. Sorry, women are not men. Nature “uses” us to bring on the next generation. That’s our dignity and our “cross”. If you want to talk about civil or human rights, you are leaving out the rights of the unborn. And you can do that by denying their personhood.

        • Carla Clark

          So are a sperm and egg alive before EEG patterns emerged. Yet, even for those anti-choicers who say that a person cannot come from nothing, they cannot conceive of how a person can come from eggs and sperm that are persons.

          By minimizing the threshold by which someone becomes a person, you do realize that you are minimizing the value of becoming a person, thereby minimizing not only women’s but men’s (THE HORROR) value as persons?

          Do we mandate that women’s bodies be used by a second person because a vagina was created to have a penis inserted in it? Do we mandate that they give birth, vaginally, because that is also the natural use of a vagina? Where’s your talk of women not being men and their natural uses when talking about rape or c-sections? Nope, you are simply using the natural law fallacy.

          We do not blame men for their biology. So why do we blame women for theirs? See, by keeping abortion legal, EVERYONE has equal rights. And when everyone has equal rights, NO one is being blamed for biology, but when we deny them those rights, we ARE blaming them for their biology.

          So, really, as noted above, the only ones being denied the status of persons with full rights are women and the only ones denying them that status are anti-choicers. The only ones who are not leaving out civil or human rights are Pro-Choicers. The only ones NOT being denied civil or human rights by (rightfully) being denied the status of persons are fetuses (WITH abortion legal). Kthxbainow.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            Yes, sperm and egg are alive, but they are not unique members of the species homo sapiens. That’s the point I was trying to make. Life is a continuum, But, sperm and egg, they are germ cells (haploid). A unique self-organizing individual human being/s identity begins at fertilization. From their union. Check our your embryology text book. No one’s “blaming” anyone. However, a man’s paternity can be determined by a DNA test. Our founding fathers said we are all CREATED equal. Fertilitzation is where our lives beging-where we are CREATED.

          • Carla Clark

            Please read more carefully, next time. Did I specifically say YOU were saying that a person can’t come from nothing? No, I don’t believe I was.

            If a woman and man are genetically unique then so are their eggs and sperm, respectively. Whoops.

            A fetus is not an individual. If it were, it’s component parts could not be divided any further while still remaining a complete member of the human species.

            My embryology text book defines a fetus as human/human being, not human being/person. I think YOU should go back and read it.

            Yeah, they did. By making abortion illegal, YOU are trying to make women unequal and fetuses ‘more’ equal.

            And, yes, you are. If you are saying that a mere biological ACCIDENT that occurs in female bodies means that women can be denied their rights to bodily autonomy, then you are blaming women for the way they were CREATED.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            you said: “If a woman and man are genetically unique then so are their eggs and sperm, respectively. Whoop” The genetic uniqueness is not what makes a person. Identical twins have the same genetic identity, but two individuals are present. They are individual human organisms and not gametes because they possess 46 chromosomes and not 23 as gametes do.

            You said: “My embryology text book defines a fetus as human/human being, not human being/person. I think YOU should go back and read it”.

            You are right, embryology texts give the biological identity: human being. Strange that the Roe V. Wade decision denied this fact and said that scientists couldn’t agree on the beginning of “human life”.(sort of unscientific). Human embryologists were only a small percentage of the “scientists they were consulting”, so no wonder there was no agreement.

            So, embryologist note fertilizatoin (or first contact) as the beginning of a human being’s life. So what do citizens of the United States do about that fact? Ignore It? Again, that’s what the fight is over. That’s what the question is. Are all human beings persons? Which are and which aren’t and who decides?

            You called the beginning of human life: “mere biological ACCIDENT that occurs in female bodies “.
            Guess we’re all mere biological accidents. Does that fact mean we’re not people?

          • Carla Clark

            YOU’RE missing the point, which is business as usual, for antis. When you first discussed uniqueness, you did NOT say that uniqueness applied ONLY to a self-organizing human. Now, you’re changing the goal posts. Typical. Besides, what right do YOU have to determine what uniqueness applies and which doesn’t? I prefer the Pro-CHOICE method. Whereby I evaluate the measurement of a principle that applies to all humans, not just humans at and beyond a gestational age, not just those that fit into an arbitrary definition of personhood, all of which eventually end up discriminating against SOME form of human life. In the former case that would be eggs and sperm. In the latter, that would be WOMEN (why would that discriminate against women, you ask. Because an equal valuation of women with fetuses, would necessarily negate any value that women hold SEPARATELY from fetuses, that being, of course, their reciprocal empathetic, bond-forming, discrete recognition and social values). The Pro-Choice principle being INTERESTS.

            Do you lack reading comprehension? If you had read, properly, you would have noticed that I was pointing out the difference between *separate* definitions of human being. The FORMER being the ones to which textbooks are ACTUALLY referring to. Note, after all, that they never give a definition for the term human being, yet they use it interchangeably with human, NOT person?

            No, scientists can’t agree when human life begins. After all, sperm and eggs are ‘alive’ in the same sense that fetuses are alive. So, deciding when human life begins would necessitate that we include sperm and eggs in that designation, and, thereby give them the same protections that antis would give to fetuses. Yet, for some reason, antis never deign to do so. Maybe because that wouldn’t only affect a woman’s body, but a MAN’S, as well? Maybe because antis are hypocrites? It’s also more evidence of the continuum on which human life falls, after all, necessarily NEGATING a beginning of human life.

            No, again, reading comprehension, please. I was NOT saying that the beginning of human life was a mere biological accident. And reading properly would have informed you of that. Even though it may not have told you that I WAS referring to the fact that it’s a biological ACCIDENT that women have uteri upon which a fetus depends for life support or that it’s a biological accident that separation from the uterus results in the fetus being incompatible with life, it’s still your responsibility to read PROPERLY and not assume.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            I think the word unique is getting us tangled up.

            The question of when human life begins has also got a lot of people mixed up.

            That’s why I has trying to restate the question – when does an individual human being’s life begin? If the embryology texts use the term “human being”, then lets go with that. They say it begins at the first contact of sperm and egg. Now, of course, life comes from life. But, in sexually reproducing species, a new self-organizing individual organism’s (aka human being) life begins with union of sperm and egg. Gametes are not organisms. Zygotes are.

            I apologize if I haven’t been deciphering your meaning PROPERLY, but how is a woman having a uterus a biological accident? If that’s an accident, then all of life is an accident, as is all of the universe. So what? Women having uteruses i (uteri?) is an existential fact. And, how is the deliberate separation of the fetus from the mother an “accident”?

            Finally, I think it’s a scandal that “scientists” refuse to admit that there’s a clear definition of the biological beginning of an individual human being’s life. They haven’t been asked the right question. Being asked when human life begins is a vague question that can be ducked. Ask the question more precisely and the answer is clear.

        • goatini

          Thanks for letting us know that you consider women to be livestock.

        • cjvg

          I’m not denying their person hood since their is NO personhood to deny until the fetus actually has the brain structure to be sentient and considered a person as much as the woman.
          Alive is not the same as sentient.
          My arm is alive and so is a tumor, no one advocates that these can not be removed when needed.
          You are playing a dishonest and inane game of semantics that is fooling nobody.
          You are not explaining why the rights of a fetus without personhood potential can superseded the rights of a living breathing feeling sentient and fully aware woman!
          Quit possible because there is no way to make it even remotely reasonable to argue that a life that exists right now should have far less rights then a potential life that has not realized, and may never realize.
          To promote the abrogation of bodily sanctity with the reasoning that a potential body could possibly have its bodily sanctity violated before it can even claim a body is insane.
          And no we did not all “get there” by forcing a woman to gestate an unwanted fetus.
          Most of us “get there” by explicit consent and agreement of the woman who actively tried to get pregnant!
          In case you do not understand what that means, it is not the mandated use of a womans body against her will, but an informed and wanted choice made by the woman with her full agreement and consent!
          Also you can not have it both ways either the people or fetus’s who are (still) clinically brain dead have civil rights or they do not.
          You can not give these two examples a different right because of your personal feelings on the subject since they are the exact same thing.
          So you believe organ harvest for transplant is murder because they are killing a person?
          I must insist that you start carrying a formal directive refusing to accept any and all organ transplants since you would not want to be the cause of a murder.
          Also if a woman can and must be forced to donate her body, health, life, wellbeing and finances for the good of a third party then you must be subject to the same.
          People like you who feel so strongly that a woman’s right to her body is subject to third party approval, should be mandated to be life organ donors.
          Your selfish and cruel refusal to donate kidney, a piece of liver, bone marrow, a cornea (no one needs two eyes) skin grafts, etc is costing the lives of many who are on the transplant list today.
          Actual lives of kids and adults here now, breathing sentient and more deserving of life then a potential could ever be.
          You have no right to keep your own body inviolate to third party use, but to advocate laws denying the same rights to a woman who is pregnant,
          It is the pinnacle of hypocrisy that you are not trying to pass laws that remove your objections to said use of your body by third parties against your will.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            There is no such thing as “potential” life. Glad to hear you use the word “sanctity”. Do you mean it? At what point does the human body begin? We’re not talking about brain waves now. We are talking about genetic identity expressed outwardly. Our genes direct the unfolding of life. Germ cells (sperm and egg) go nowhere without fertilitzation. They can’t. They are haploid. This is not a game a semantics. It’s a game of logic and searching for truth. Allowing deliberate abortion has has thrown a curve at our logic. The poor doctors who are supposedly men of “science” can’t handle it.

          • Carla Clark

            Embryos go nowhere without implantation. Fetuses go nowhere without birth. More fetuses are aborted by miscarriage than by induced abortion. Hmm, sounds like the right place to grant personhood is at birth, after all! Thanks for making our point FOR us.

            And, I see, that your ‘logic’ has thrown a curve at you, so meaning you must evade any points that demonstrate how making abortion illegal does NOT fit into a logical worldview, as cjvg pointed out:

            Also if a woman can and must be forced to donate her body, health,
            life, wellbeing and finances for the good of a third party then you must
            be subject to the same for the sanctity of “person hood” of others
            like you who feel so strongly that a woman’s right to her body is
            subject to third party approval, should be mandated to be life organ

            Your selfish and cruel refusal to donate kidney, a piece of liver,
            bone marrow, a cornea (no one needs two eyes) skin grafts, etc is
            costing the lives of many who are on the transplant list today.
            Actual lives of kids and adults here now, breathing sentient and more deserving of life then a potential could ever be.

            You have no right to keep your own body inviolate to third party use,
            but to advocate laws denying the same rights to a woman who is
            It is the pinnacle of hypocrisy that you are not trying to
            pass laws that remove your objections to said use of your body by third
            parties against your will;

            If abortion was meant to be illegal, after all, all those things above would be LEGAL, along with rape. They’re not. So, guess who’s logical and guess who ISN’T, now? Hint: the latter does not refer to US. Whoops.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            You said: “Embryos go nowhere without implantation”. You could just have easily said “Babies go nowhere without nursing”. If you deprive any human being of shelter and nutrition, she will go nowhere. If you give a sperm or egg shelter and nutrition, it’s natural course will be to die UNLESS it unites with another germ cell (donated by a parent of the opposite sex). Then, it’s DNA lives on, but as part of a newly created individual human organism.

            You said “About most embryos dying before implantation”
            Where do you get this information? It’s a myth being disseminated by the ART technologists to rationalized their industry. Animal studies show that a small percentage die before implantation.

            If you say that following the natural order of things, that rape would be natural because we possess reproductive organs, that would also justify anything we can do with other parts of our bodies. You are denying that human behavior isn’t also part of the natural order. Behavior is as much a part of evolution as our physical bodies. Problem is, humans have “open programs” (free will) which requires that we consciously search for the right behavior. That our minds (consciences) govern our actions. Some groups/individuals get it wrong.

            As for organ donation being mandatory if abortion is outlawed, you are denying the unique role of parenthood in the evolutionary scheme of things. Organ donation is dependent on high technology and is not the only way to save human life. It certainly doesn’t generate it. Human reproduction is not dependent on industrial society and is the only way for human beings to get into this world.

          • cjvg

            And there is the rub, you believe that just because a woman’s body can be used to create live it must be obligated to do so at all costs to her.

            Newsflash, you were arguing that the fetus was a totally separate entity from the woman, and as such had a right to sanctity of its body (although a woman does not ?!)
            If that is the case why can a woman be mandated to provide and donate the use of her body for the benefit of a third person, but you can not be mandated to have your body used for the benefit of a third party like the living people on the transplant list?

            Afterall these are living breathing people who are already here, is their life not as “sacred” as that of a fetus?

            And NO, there are no other ways to save people who need a organ transplant, if that was the case we would not have 18 people die each day waiting for transplants that can’t take place because of the shortage of donated organs.!!!!!

            So you decided that the life of a third person who is already born and needs an organ transplant is less “sacred” because saving them requires medical interventions?
            Well then, I guess we can do away with hospitals altogether since living breathing people who need medical interventions to continue living are not really that important!

            By that reasoning a pregnant woman who is about to miscarry should let that fetus die since it needs medical intervention to live and thus is not “worthy” of life?!

            As for human reproduction being the only way to get “in the world”, does that justify forced pregnancy and childbirth?!
            So a man who can not get a woman to marry him and who can not afford a surrogate would be justified in raping a woman and forcing her to birth his child?!
            Afterall that is the only way he can get his biological child “in the world”

          • Carla Clark

            Seriously, quit changing the goal posts and maybe we *might* take you seriously. I was replying to YOU. I was using YOUR logic. By YOUR logic, babies can’t be persons. NOT mine. Again, thanks for proving OUR point that your definition of personhood is discriminatory.

            Really, studies show this? Why have you not linked to any? I am using an oft-cited, medically-accredited, peer-reviewed claim, after all. It’s the general consensus among medical PROFESSIONALS. Therefore, not linking to any of the sources that you say claim otherwise, merely gives rise to the suspicion that these are not claims to be given equal weight, much as is the case with non/anthropomorphically-generated climate change deniers.

            Two animal behaviours that you seem to have ignored are self-abortion and spontaneous abortions in humans, specifically. Seems to me that our wills really ARE following the natural order of things, at least to some extent. And, again, rape is what YOU are justifying, NOT us. Allowing for one violation, because it only applies to women, specifically, is the most repugnant form of misogyny.

            Actually, you are forgetting IVF and that women have depended on society, whether industrial or not, to give birth, safely, for thousands of years. Any steps taken to mitigate the risks of pregnancy, have used some form of technology. And, really, there is no difference between ‘high’ technology or any other form of technology, when it comes to the ‘natural order’. Almost half of the people on the organ transplant list die waiting for an organ to be donated. Roughly equivalent to the number of abortions being performed compared to the number of pregnancies being maintained. Finally, parenthood has nothing to do with pregnancy. Child-rearing is not comparable to childbearing. Not only due to the fact that parenting can be carried out by ANYONE, while organ donation and childbearing can only be carried out by a select few. More to the point, any unique role that is attributed to parenthood in an evolutionary scheme of things, is arbitrary and simply YOUR opinion.

          • cjvg

            There most certainly is such a thing as potential life.
            Since you apparently have a very hard time with comprehension, let me elaborate in a simple and easy to follow story.

            An egg is a potential chicken but not yet a chicken, it is “alive” but not yet living.
            It could potentially continue on its road to development and become a live chick, or something might interrupt that development and it will never be.
            A tumor or my arm has all the genetic traits I have and is considered alive, it is not however a sentient and selfaware organism with separate rights from me, the owner of the body it grows in/on.

            If I need to have my tumor removed I can do so, because I am a sentient and aware lifeform, and my rights trump that of a non sentient, non aware, but alive, separate organism growing in my body.
            Why; because it is my body and I have a level of awareness that the tumor does not have (who knows, it might develop it if we let it, should all cancer patients now be obligated to let their tumors grow?!)

    • goatini

      All persons, ever, have already been born.
      Rights accrue to persons at birth.

    • Ruth Rivera

      Even you don’t believe that fertilized eggs and embryos are persons, Michaela. No forced-birther really does. I know this because NONE of you hold funerals for your/your partner’s used maxi pads and tampons. If you are sexually active, then those used feminine hygiene products could very well be holding a microscopic person. We typically hold funerals for our dead, even our indigent dead, so it stands to reason that you would hold funerals for your used maxi pads if you are sexually active.

      If you’re so concerned about microscopic human life, I’m even willing to send you mine, so that you can hold funerals for them. Won’t you think of the poor, unborn babies?!

      • Michaela Dasteel

        Sperm and eggs are alive, not “potentially” alive. When these germ cells unite, an individual human being is created. From animal and a very limited number of human (less than 10) studies, five to 10 percent of humans die before implantation. If you are sexually active, you are probably using birth control. Most people are. With the pill, there might be an equal percentage of break through ovulations. Some of those will be fertilized and then can’t implant because the lining of the uterus has been thinned by the pill. Yes, those would come out with menses. And, yes, if one cared about the sacredness of human life, one would mourn those deaths, and many do. I work with women trying to get pregnant and I see them mourn. Our culture worldwide has been corrupted by the acceptance of abortion. It’s not only a “choice” now. In order to accept others doing it, we all have to deny the sacredness of human life from it’s beginning. And so we act like this tiny little microscopic spec is nothing. And so women forget to demand to be treated with the utmost respect.

        • Ruth Rivera

          I fail to see how forcing women to remain pregnant against their will or demanding that they die along with their fetuses if their bodies are unable to sustain a pregnancy shows “utmost respect” to women.

          You must be aware that not every woman wants to procreate, right (points to self)?. And that even most women who do want to be mothers want to have only as many as they can properly care for, when conditions in their life are such that they are fully able to be the best mothers they can be, right? Why should YOUR ideas about what’s right for their bodies, their lives, supercede THEIRS? How, exactly, is that respectful of any particular woman?

          • Michaela Dasteel

            This new meme, “forcing women to remain pregnant” is the new alternative to “a woman’s right to chose”, right? That one’s losing it’s umph, so we have a new, more compelling euphemism for killing, opps, I meant “termination”.

            It’s fine to try to limit your family size but we are creatures – we don’t have total control. To be so determined to control your life that you are willing to deny your unborn child’s humanity and do away with her is what I reject. It’s the way of the world, but I reject it. I think women are called to something higher.

            Also, admitting to the personhood of the unborn doesn’t mean that the child is chosen over the mother in matters of medical intervention. The idea is to try to save them both.

          • Carla Clark

            No, what’s losing it’s umph, is antis false equivalence of terminating a pregnancy with killing. Because, then, they would have to acknowledge that the intent of abortion is to terminate a pregnancy, not kill a ‘child’, and, would, in that case, have to go even farther to demonstrate that a fetus is an individual, therefore a human being/person. They would no longer be able to deny that pregnancy involves a fetal placenta interfaced with the maternal placenta, thereby limiting, if not foregoing it completely, their ability to demonstrate fetal individuality.

            How is preventing women from choosing whether or not to terminate a pregnancy, anything BUT forcing women to remain pregnant? No, the issues are the same and always have been. The fact that antis can’t acknowledge that THAT is what they are in the business of doing, is losing it’s umph and raises the need for a new, more compelling euphemism for misogyny.

            No, the only one denying ANYONE’S humanity is you. Women’s, in general. Pro-Choicers are aware of the humanity of a fetus, however.

            A fetus is not a ‘child’ (but, any thinking that that denies humanity to a fetus, is wrong, because calling something what it is not, is just another form of applying a euphemism, which means YOU, yourself, believe that there is no humanity inherent to any gestational age, therefore the need to classify a fetus as something MORE than it actually is. Pro-CHOICERS recognize that a fetus is inherently human, therefore have NO need to call it anything other than that. Hmmm….)

            I think women are called to something higher, myself. However, I don’t understand how denying a pregnant woman the right to control her body is anything other than lowering her status. It reduces a woman to mere livestock, as she, unlike her male counterparts, is held to what her body dictates. A woman must have no dreams, hopes, wishes, desires or wants beyond that. In FACT, she’s not even allowed to make a decision to continue or terminate a pregnancy based on whether she can be a parent or not that an extant child would need. No, it’s not a higher ‘calling’ that you exhort women to. It’s a higher form of enslavement to the dictates of her body and what her ‘masters’ deem her ‘duty’.

            The idea is to try and save them both? You DO realize that maternal mortality contributes to the infant mortality rate, as well? You DO realize that pregnancy is the second leading cause of death for women, WORLDWIDE. You DO realize that by the time the majority of risks to a woman’s health and life are identified and realized, it is too late to save the woman AND the fetus? This is what comes of equating a woman’s value with a fetuses. SICK.

        • Ruth Rivera

          Furthermore, Michaela, an “individual” does not reside within another person. By definition, an individual is actually separate. In any event, no born person has any sort of right to commandeer another person’s body, not even blood and bone marrow, the extraction of which is far less risky than pregnancy and labor, so why should insensate clusters of barely differentiated human tissue get special rights that no other ACTUAL, SENTIENT person has?

          FFS, not even death row inmates may be compelled to donate tissues (blood, bone marrow, etc.) and organs, even if they caused the condition for which the prospective recipient now needs those tissues. We cannot harvest organs and tissues from corpses without the prior consent of the deceased or his/her family, even though doing so will not cause any harm to those corpses. But, somehow, pregnant females and only pregnant females must be compelled, at great risk to their well-being, health, and sometimes even their life, to create a child and give birth. And all at their own expense, too, unlike with organ donation.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            Ruth said “an “individual” does not reside within another person. By definition, an individual is actually separate.”

            So, a child (fetus in your terms) one day before full term delivery, is not an individual as long as she is still inside her mother?

          • Carla Clark

            Nope, a fetus by MEDICAL terms. A child by YOUR terms. A pregnant woman is not a mother to the fetus. And, yes, that’s exactly what she’s saying. The fetus is still inside her is not. It hasn’t changed ‘location’ as you so ‘delicately’ term a woman, now, has it? Seriously, why is this such a difficult concept for antis?

        • Ruth Rivera

          And still, since you don’t hold funerals for your used feminine hygiene products, it is apparent that you don’t even believe your own bullshit.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            If women knew when they had lost an embryo prior to implantation, more would probably have a ceremony. And if you’re contracepting, there would be far less chance, right – because it’s supposed to prevent fertilization?

            The high pre-implantation embryo wastage statistics (50%) you hear these days come from a study by Hertig and Rock in the 50’s .From 211 women who had just had hysterectomies , they recovered 34 “ova”. When 8 of those were examined, 4 were found to be abnormal. The study is skewed by the fact that the sample size was so small, the women were older, and had already had reproductive problems. Also, the study hasn’t been reproduced. Plus, “ova” have been known to cleave up to the blastocyst stage without fertilization, so those “ova” may not have been embryos. So far as I can see, that’s the extent of the “scientific research” that supports the modern meme that there’s embryos in your tampax, and that justifies the huge wastage going on with IVF.

          • Carla Clark

            “Plus, “ova” have been known to cleave up to the blastocyst stage without fertilization”

            Yet you would deny ova the chance of being persons…? Although, apparently, they are self-organizing. WHOOPS.

            Hmm, so, either egg fertilization and/or pregnancy does NOT happen all the time, or there are TONS of pre-implanted embryos that get wasted in someone’s Tampax. You antis sure love shooting yourselves in the foot, dontcha?

            Wtf does that have to do with using IVF, anyways? IVF is for INFERTILE couples, not what was reported to be a normal, expected occurrence. Oi. And, are you seriously going to tell me that my aunt and uncle have tons of children that they just haven’t told us about, after years of trying, with IVF and other methods, and before they adopted their first son? Oh, yeah, what was that about your claim that technology (and HIGH technology at that) isn’t needed to aid in reproduction, now?

            Antis are certainly anti-science, as well as anti-choice.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            Nodody’s denying a haploid ova the right to live. It dies after a few divisions and is extremely rare. It’s diploid and therefore is not a human organism. It’s like skin cells dividing, except it’s a germ cell dividing.

            If fertilization hasn’t occured, there’s no human being. If it has, there are not TONS of them that don’t implant. Maybe 5-10%. I don’t understand your logic re my shooting myself in the foot.

            Re IVF, to be profitable, ovaries are hyperstimulated and 8-10 ova fertilized in a petri dish. Of the ones that haven’t been damaged in the process, maybe 2 are inserted and the rest are either disposed of or put into frozen orphanages. People have to have forgotten what these embryos really are in order to do this. That’s what Roe V. Wade has done to us. Not only allowed women to “chose” to end an untimely pregnancy, but to intentionally kill or indefinitely freeze excess embryos in hopes of having a biological child instead of adopting. You ever read “Brave New World”? If you did, apparently that vision of the future didn’t bother you.

          • Carla Clark

            And no one is denying a fetus the right to live. DERP. The right to live YOU require for fetuses doesn’t exist anywhere else, that being the right to exist at all costs. And you JUST pointed that out with your haploid/diploid ova. Besides, it was YOUR contention that self-organizing humans should be considered persons, not mine. Please stop attributing things to me that were said by YOU.

            And, again, I ask, what magically makes a fertilized egg a human being as opposed to a self-organizing ova? Hmm…? You DO realize that women are born with all the eggs that they will ever have in their lifetime? And that every time they menstruate, they are flushing out the eggs she ovulated? And that it’s very hard, if not completely impossible, to determine when egg fertilization occurs? So, if a woman is sexually active, you can’t simply say that there was or wasn’t an embryo/person being flushed out during a miscarriage. So, either you don’t care about all the lives that may have been wasted, OR, as every anti I’ve met has, without fail, made the opposite claim to, egg fertilization and pregnancy DON’T occur all the time. Besides that, lives being potentially wasted was the ONLY thing Ruth was trying to explain to you. After all she said “there MIGHT very well be”. Kthx.

            Sorry, but it’s antis who support adoption only when they can force a woman to suffer for having unsanctioned sex. Every other instance where adoption SHOULD be available, is dismissed as being irresponsible, unless you’ve tried to have your own children, first. Pro-Choicers support adoption, abortion and birth, either vaginally or via C-Section.

            I’d think that forcing infertile women to adopt, and pregnant women to remain pregnant, would be far more heinous than anything portrayed as such in a book written over a quarter century, ago.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            I made a mistake. I said “It’s diploid and therefore is not a human organism”. Should have said,”It’s HAPLOID and therefore is not a human organism”. Sorry.

            You said, ” So, if a woman is sexually active, you can’t simply say that there was or wasn’t an embryo/person being flushed out during a miscarriage.” I assume you meant you can’t tell if you are having a miscarriage or a menses. OK. How does our perception affect what’s really happening? Also, those children that don’t implant, or die in the tube — many have a genetic or developmental defect that keeps them from continuing on. We have to accept death, but not intentional killing. Many don’t implant because their mother is low in progesterone. That can be treated.

            I am not familiar with “antis” opposing adoption if the couple hasn’t tried to have your their own children. Is that what adoption agencies say? I’m not familiar with that, nor have I ever heard an “anti” say that.

            What did you mean by “Pro-Choicers support adoption, abortion and birth, either vaginally or via C-Section.” Confusing. But on the subject, the statistics show that Planned Parenthood encourages or refers for adoption in only a miniscule number of cases.

        • Carla Clark

          Nope, YOU have to deny the sacredness of WOMEN’S lives in order to treat them as breeding livestock. You equate them with fetuses, regardless of the FACT that this infantilizes them. Women who demand respect refuse to be treated as such, therefore, YOUR ilk are the ones who don’t respect women. WHOOPS. Therefore, they ignore any demands a woman may make in order to be treated as a person beyond her capacity for motherhood. WHOOPS. Which brings us, of course, back to the question posed in the title.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            I don’t know what religion you are referring to. I think it’s some straw dog religion.

            You keep talking about breeding livestock. Is that what you think human procreation is? Is that what you are, a farm animal? Is that what your mother was? There’s a lot of dysfunction in families and between women and men because they are behaving that way. Like animals who’ve lost their natural courtship and nurturing instincts. Humans are more like wild animals except that we have to consciously chose the good, either through cultural norms passed on, or by ourselves (when our culture is corrupt). That’s the human dilemma – the challenge and the glory. To discover the good and be ready to sacrifice for it. Barnyard animals have been bred to be slaves.

          • Carla Clark

            Wrong, it’s the same religion I’M a part of. Christianity. Should have asked, before making it clear that you, erroneously and foolishly, believed that I had no idea what I was talking about, eh? So sorry.

            Humans ARE animals.

            But I’m not the one who thinks women are merely breeding livestock. YOU are, by forcing women, as any farmer would do his own livestock, to carry pregnancies to full-term, in order to create more livestock to be lead to the slaughter or to create more breeding females to inseminate, just as you would do to create more fertile human females or to create more soldiers to die on the killing fields.

            My PRO-CHOICE mother is FAR more nurturing than a Pro-Life woman who would think it’s her DUTY to carry a fetus to term no matter what the circumstances are under which she would be bringing up the child, who would think it’s her DUTY to carry a fetus to term no matter WHAT her wishes and wants may be.

            The dysfunction you speak of, only occurs in families that are Pro-Life, not Pro-Choice.

            The only corrupt culture is one that treats it’s women like livestock, like the Pro-Life movement would have us, and the only good culture, or way to consciously choose the good, is to follow the path of Pro-Choice.

            Yes, discovering the good and being ready to sacrifice for it, is the human dilemma. But the path that forces one group of humans to sacrifice more than the other, such as Pro-Life would do, has NOTHING to do with choice, and EVERYTHING to do with misogyny and breeding women to be slaves.

          • Michaela Dasteel

            I am tempted to say “Let’s agree to disagree”. BUT your way of thinking IS representative of a lot of people. PRO-CHOICE is how we are made. That’s being human. A human animal. With free will. No one’s denying that. What we are disputing is how do you make those choices? Anything goes? Or are there underlying realities we try to cooperate with? Or do you euphamisticlay manipulate those realities because of your subjective world view?

            When you speak about DUTY … would you say it’s the DUTY of a mother to care for her child? Are all duties to be rejected? What we are arguing about here is WHAT IS A HUMAN CHILD? When does her life begin? Answer that from the best scientific evidence and then go on to decide what your duty is.

            My mother was probably pro-choice, too, at one point in her life. So was I (because I excepted rape and incest). I love(d) her very much and argued with her too. We enjoyed using our brains. We are Irish. That’s why I keep on arguing with you.

        • cjvg

          The utmost respect that you feel they should not own their own bodies but should be subject to the believes and religious interpretations of others.
          Spare me, I would rather not be subjected to your kind of “respect”

          • Michaela Dasteel

            I didn’t mention any religious idea other than using the term “sacred”.

          • Carla Clark

            And what, other than religion, purports that there is a divine (sacred) feminine, yet not a divine (sacred) masculine? It’s the same organization that believes all men to be divine, yet has to coerce women into becoming livestock, by calling it something sacred so all women will attempt to achieve it, like the cattle the Church ‘masters’ believe them to be, after all.