Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Opening The Casket

The political landscape has changed in this country. The consequences of these changes -- especially for the unborn -- are not hopeful. They are horrific. We need to stand up and do something about it. I don't say that to lay a guilt trip on anyone. I say it to offer a reality check.

I want to offer a challenge to the pro-life among us (and that includes me) who are educated and aware of the horror of abortion but continue to sit quietly by as it goes on. To do so, I will offer the same challenge that Scott Klusendorf does both in his talks and in his new book, The Case For Life. I want to challenge anyone who reads this to open up the casket on abortion. Here, in Scott's own words, is that challenge:
In 1955, Emmett Till, a 14 year-old Black youth, traveled from Chicago to visit his cousin in the town of Money, Mississippi. Upon arrival, he bragged about his white girl friends back in Chicago. Now this was surprising to his cousin and the cousin’s friends because blacks in Mississippi during the 50s didn’t make eye contact with white people, let alone date them! Both actions were considered disrespectful. Later that day, Emmett, his cousin, and a small group of black males entered Bryant’s Store where, egged-on by the other males, 14-year old Emmett flirted with a 21 year-old white, married woman behind the counter. After purchasing candy, he either whistled at her or said something mildly flirtatious. (Reports vary) The cousin and the others warned him he was in for trouble. A few days later, at 2:00 a.m., Emmett was taken at gunpoint from his uncle’s home by the clerk’s husband and another man. After savagely beating him, they killed him with a single bullet to the head. Emmett’s bloated corpse was found three days later in the Tallahatchie River. A barbed wire fan had been shoved over his head. His face was partially crushed and beaten almost beyond recognition. The local Sheriff placed Emmett’s body in a sealed coffin and shipped it back to his mother in Chicago. When Mamie Till got the body, she made a stunning announcement: There would be an open-casket funeral for her son Emmett. People protested and reminded her how much this would upset everyone. Mamie agreed, but countered, “I want the whole world to see what they did to my boy.” The photo of Emmett’s mangled body in that open casket was published in Jet magazine and it helped launch the Civil Rights Movement in America. Three months later in Montgomery, Alabama, Rosa Parks refused to go to the back of the bus when ordered to do so. She said the image of Emmett Till gave her the courage to stand her ground.
Most Americans are blissfully unaware of the reality of abortion. Their knowledge of it is intellectual (at best) and far removed from anything concrete. So I agree with Scott. Unless people see the reality of abortion, they will never be truly motivated to end it. I offer the following links as a way to bring that reality to the forefront. Click on any one of them and be prepared to gag with revulsion ... and then consider what we all can do to stop it.

"Looking Abortion in the Eye": Father Frank Pavone

Life Training Institute Video and Still Shots

The Abortion Gallery

That's enough ... but there is plenty more. The question is:

What will we do?

80 comments:

  1. How dare you bastardize a movement for freedom over

    Anti-abortionists like you are the same kind of religious zealots who would have been burning crosses and meting out this kind of savage violence claiming that the bible backed you up and that your right to not be whistled at was being infringed. Now you want to take away the right of a woman to control what happens to her own body to impose your morality onto someone else. I am a christian and no fan of abortion by any stretch of the imagination, but if you are not a vegetarian then you are looking at a big fat hypocrite everytime that you look in the mirror. Look at what we do to animals http://www.goveg.com/factoryFarming.asp
    You wouldn`t dream of giving up your big Mac though oh nooooo but when it comes to someone else having to give up choice over their body well bring it on!!! What if I wanted to make your Big Mac illegal you would be the first to jump up and down and howl about me imposing my values and morals on you, you jumped up moron.

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  2. Ahh -- the abortion-vegetarian link. I never thought of that one. I only approved your comment to show the tolerance and respect inherent in your view. Thanks for making my point better than I could have -- especially in your unwillingness to put your name on the comment you left so lovingly.

    In case you missed it, my beef with abortion is NOT dependent on "taking away" anyone's "rights" -- except those of the defenseless unborn human being you are so willing to destroy as you protect the "right" to "control what happens to [a woman's] own body."

    If a mother was abusing her toddler would it be OK with you because denying her that ability "imposes my morality" on her? I hope not. But if not, and before you go off on another of your vacuous rants, you need to demonstrate that the fetus you are willing to destroy is not a member of the human family. Until then, I'll eat my Big Mac with a smile on my face.

    Thanks for the "thoughtful" comment ...

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  3. BTW, Anonymous, you claim that you are "... a Christian and no fan of abortion by any stretch of the imagination."

    Why are you not a "fan of abortion"? I would love to know.

    Thanks ...

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  5. I always love how anti abortion campainers are men !!!

    Anyway, I am a fan of abortion, I am male as well.Its a womans choice to decide, no-one elses.

    Black Rights and Abortion are 2 separate issues and people should have the freedom to pursue both without discimination. More power to you.
    Kanga999
    Not sure how to add a URL, but I am trying not to be anonymous.

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  6. What I will share with you is simply that anti-abortion laws are not the solution. Whether you are pro-life or pro-choice, take a look at history and see that you won't achieve your goals in this case through legislation. Prior to Roe v. Wade, women who needed abortions were forced to seek them out from the unscrupulous and/or unqualified. Most of those women were poor; the wealthy simply flew to other countries where abortion was legal and had those abortions performed by qualified physicians in those countries. Education is a good thing; birth control needs to be a part of that. This is where the Catholic Church needs to reform itself; with the human population on the rise and the knowledge that preaching abstinence has not been an effective approach, coupling education with birth control is the most sensible way to reduce abortion. I doubt if it can ever be completely eliminated.

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  7. ANd so what would you have done with those who did this and countless unspeakable acts to thousand and thousand of african americans in this country for decades? If you even entertain the thought of subjecting them to the same punishment (capital punishment!?!) then you need to rethink your position. So many of our conservatives on the right carry the banner of pro life for our unborn children but they turn the other cheek when it comes to criminals. You can't have it both ways!!!

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  8. It doesn't matter how snide your response; I see the logic in that response.

    The assumption that being revolted will ALWAYS lead people toward justice is wrong. Surgery is revolting, but it saves lives. The body of Till could have lead people to indiscriminately seek revenge. But that wouldn't have been just.

    I don't know where I stand on abortion, but I know where I stand on your post. It's trying to apply logic/evidence to what is essentially a gut reaction to an issue.

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  9. With so many children being abused and killed on a regular basis, why don't you deal with saving the children that are already here?

    For all the women that you scare into not terminating their pregnancies, do you bother to help them take care of these babies or do you take off after your cause is complete?

    If it's all the same to you....stay out of my womb.

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  10. First, What does anyone's sex have to do with the moral questions surrounding abortion. Does my sex invalidate my ability to make moral judgments? If so, it also invalidates yours.

    By the way, Jill Stanek, a woman and former nurse, is one of the finest pro-lifers in the country. This in itself invalidates your claim ("all anti abortion campainers (sic) are men") but also makes your implied reason for making the claim ridiculous. Jill became a foe of abortion because she saw the horror of it close up. That's WHY she is pro-life -- she knows the reality of abortion better than you for precisely the reason I addressed in this post.

    Second, why are you a "fan of abortion"? Why is abortion something to root for? Please explain.

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  11. I haven't told you my position on capital punishment so you have no idea what it is. That said, those who differentiate between unborn children and death row murderers do so because the former are INNOCENT victims while the latter are not.

    I understand your argument (more than you know) but you cannot deny that there is a moral distinction between the two by trying to make them morally equivalent. It doesn't fly ...

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  12. I have no idea if all the "anonymous" commenters here are the same person or not. (Must not be because one claims to be a male and later wants me to "stay out of [her] womb"). It would be helpful to make up a name (so I could properly direct my responses) if you are unwilling to attach your real name to your ideas.

    That said, all these comments miss the point by changing the subject to questions of sex invalidating a moral position, slavery, womb incursion, surgery etc. None of these have anything to do with answering the central question: "What is the unborn?"

    If the unborn is not a human being, destroying it requires no justification. If it is a human being, no justification for destroying it is adequate.

    THE QUESTION IS NOT ABOUT THE WOMAN OR THE CREDIBILITY OF THE PRO-LIFER. THE QUESTION IS ABOUT THE VALUE OF THE UNBORN.

    The point of the post was not to evoke an emotional "gut reaction." The point was to show the reality of what abortion does -- it kills a human being. All the rationalizations and diversions you anonymous commenters have brought up do nothing to answer the central question: "What is the unborn?" In fact, your evasiveness at answering that question and your being so horrified that I would suggest we show the reality of abortion go a long way to proving my point.

    I appreciate your help!

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  13. The government tells us all the time what we can and can't do to our bodies. I think most people who are against abortion aren't doing it out of an attempt to exert control over a woman. The fact that pro-lifers are as likely to be women as men belies the idea that it's men exerting control.

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  14. My body, my life, my choice. Being pro-choice often prevents bringing a child into a world where the mother either can't or won't care for them. But you fail to see that, because you're blinded by whatever "faith" you claim to have. You should be ashamed!

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  15. Well (latest iteration of) "Anonymous",

    I'm sorry to disappoint you with my lack of shame for speaking in defense of the most vulnerable members of the human community (the unborn), but I am not in the least bit ashamed of doing so. In fact, I do so precisely because people like you refuse to even discuss the fact that the unborn deserves protection in virtue of what it is -- a distinct, living, human being.

    Your latest comment is proof of the selfishness inherent in your view. While you want to engage in the "my body, my life, my choice," sloganeering, you fail to see how (sadly) ironic it is that you have absolutely no regard for the defenseless, "body, life and choice" of the unborn. You don't even consider it, let alone offer a reasonable defense of your position or a thoughtful critique of mine.

    That being the case, if you want to see someone who ought to be ashamed, I'm afraid you'll have to look no further than your own bathroom mirror ...

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  16. Do we need more people? If a human life can be ended before it even knows its a life. I'm for it.

    There are 6 billion little miracles walking around now.

    I say one less selfrighteous person driving a car/ making trash/ starting a blog.

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  17. Wow-what a story to use as your platform for your so called "pro-life" views.

    You should be ashamed of yourself.

    Thankfully, in America women have access and a right to reproductive health. I know this threatens some people, but thankfully women,in America, do not need to have 3rd world health care because of a few individual's religious belief.

    Again, shame on you for using Emmett Till to bolster your so called "pro-life" views.

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  18. Guess what Av8torBob-this is not a theocracy-so if you really feel so strongly about the cause of the unborn move to a country where abortion is illegal.

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  19. In response to three anonymous "commenters" since my last response (taken in order) ...

    1. No response required: This commenter finds the elimination of people with whom he/she disagrees (or, horror of horror, has to share the planet) as a personal affront to his/her personal autonomy. Not much to say to that. It speaks for itself. I think we call that a misanthrope at best -- a dictatorial megalomaniac more likely -- and then accuses OTHERS of "self-righteousness." Wow.

    2. I've already addressed my complete lack of shame. It would be more productive if you addressed my actual arguments and questions about the status of the unborn and did NOT just keep regurgitating the same primacy of your own personal inconveniences.

    3. Please tell me where my theology has even been mentioned -- by me. My stance against abortion is not dependent on ANY specific religious view ... but it is a neat (and common) way to avoid answering my ACTUAL view.

    Bob

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  20. Hi Bob,

    I just happened across your blog as I was refreshing my memory about the Emmett Till case as he is currently being mentioned in the news again. So, I just skimmed over the responses and find them quite typical. It appears that you used the horrific murder of the young Mr. Till as a comparison in both the innocence, injustice, and the visuals (I'm assuming)of your abortion stance/photos. By the way, I didn't look at them, as I've seen some before and was horrified by them as well.

    Certainly you know that people would be furious at your comparison as most cannot ethically connect these two without serious reflective thought of their OWN actions toward those in our time who have no rights--meaning the unborn. It appears that you are relatively unfazed, so hang in there. This is America, and, for right now at least, we are entitled to express our opinions whether they differ from others or not!

    Oh, and, by the way, for all you haters. I AM a Christian but am not "religious." I am a woman and I don't believe in abortion and when I was separated from my first husband and pregnant by my boyfriend and future husband, I chose to live with the consequences of my behavior rather than making my unborn child pay for it. I lived through humiliation, yes, but my youngest daughter just turned 22, built her first house at 21 years old, works full time time as a detention offcer and attends school full time and will receive her Bachelors degree in Criminal Justice in December 09. She and her sister are my sunshine and I could never live with the what-ifs or my conscience if I had killed her or, as these photos probably show, ripped her little body to shreds.

    Dina

    PS I voted for Obama, and I hope he doesn't make me regret it regarding abortion!

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  21. Thanks Dina ... and thanks for sharing your story. I wonder what kind of response the anonymous commenters would have for you. I also appreciate your pointing out that one doesn't have to be "religious" or use religion to ground his/her pro-life views. Those views stand on their own based in science and philosophy (see earlier posts).

    Unfortunately, Obama has already shown his stance and lack of moral courage regarding abortion ... and it ain't going to get any better.

    He says he wants to reduce the number of abortions -- to which we should ask, "Why?" If there is nothing wrong with it, and it is up to the woman to decide for herself about her body (and all that rot ...), what reason would he give for doing so? Don't expect an answer from him on that one anytime soon (or any of the anonymous commenters above for that matter).

    Anyway, thanks again ... and all the best to you and your daughters.

    Bob

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  23. There will come a day when every human being, regardless of who they are, how important they consider their opinions, or what intellectual prowess they have obtained, will have to answer to the One True and Living God...before whom the whole earth will tremble.

    Debra

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  24. He is unfazed, because he thinks god is on his side.

    Because the bible told me so...

    The idea has killed more people than abortion ever will. When you think you can't be wrong you most likely are.

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  25. The civil rights movement.
    Abortion rights

    The only similarity I see between the two issues is the fact that they are both very voilitile subjects.
    Personally, I take offense with anyone that spouts strongs "anti-abortion" views, especially if they have never had to deal with the heartbreak of making the decision between abortion and giving birth.
    Having said that, I CAN speak about both sides of the abortion issue. I had an abortion. I also have given a child up for adoption. I walked through protestors SCREAMING "how can you kill you baby" in my face.
    I handed the child I carried in my womb for 9 months to a stranger.
    Today, I regret the adoption decision. I have never regretted the abortion decision. It was much easier. It was also my right to choose.

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  26. Sorry Bob, but you're in the wrong here. I can see why people are offended that you connect a lynching murder of a 14 year-old boy (which became a catalyst for the civil-rights movement and NOT the anti-abortion movement) and abortion. Why don't you just post articles about other inspirational people who haven't been killed by racists to prove your point? Ah, because the truth is you want to use something that commands our deepest sympathies, not just something that elicits a gut reaction. Unfortunately, you're not really accomplishing that goal and you're actually offending and insulting some people.

    Personally, I believe in women having the option to have an abortion because I don't believe most women want to have them and that they probably have a lifetime of guilt or regret. I believe that children should not be born into a world that more often than not does not have a place for them where they'll be nurtured and raised properly.

    If all the pro-lifers want abortions to be stopped, figure out a way to deal with all the orphans and unwanted children in this world, THEN make it against the law. Until then, you're saying that you're OK with creating life, just not having to assume the caring/responsibility for it.

    Anyhow, would I ever want my wife, or any of my friends and family to have an abortion? No. But is it my right to force another woman not to? No. And lastly I would not judge them for having an abortion either; that's something individuals who have them have to live with for the rest of their life.

    On a side note, I read your intro to your blog and faith has had a bad rap because it makes people stop embracing empirical evidence (because empirical evidence only takes us so far, and that's where faith comes in nicely) and those who have faith try to push their beliefs on those who don't have/want it.

    By the way, "Obama has already shown his stance and lack of moral courage regarding abortion" is pretty catty. You're probably not going to convince someone (who doesn't believe the same things as you) of the validity of your argument by passing judgment. If you were a fan of Bush, where was his moral courage when he sent thousands of soldiers to death and is responsible for thousands of civilian deaths? "Pro-life"-ers like him are some of the biggest hypocrites around.

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  27. 1. Because the bible told me so ...

    I don't know how many ways I can say the same thing without you understanding ... my stance against abortion is NOT reliant on the Bible or any religious idea. It is based on the scientific FACT that a unique, living human being is created at conception, and on the philosophical proposition that human life is valuable in virtue of the kind of thing it is. The only ones bringing religion into this debate are the commenters.

    2. The idea has killed more people than abortion ever will. When you think you can't be wrong you most likely are."

    Factually incorrect. If you want statistics you can go here: http://true-horizon.blogspot.com/2008/02/naturalism-worldy-end.html

    Abortion has killed ~ 37 million in the U.S. alone since Roe-v-Wade in 1973. Show me anything remotely equivalent to that which can be attributed to Christianity.

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  29. Anyhow, would I ever want my wife, or any of my friends and family to have an abortion? No. But is it my right to force another woman not to?

    Let me read back what you just said, Neil. You appear to think abortion kills an innocent human being, or that it is wrong in some morally unacceptable sense ... yet you don't want to want to force that view on anyone else.

    Would it be OK with you if some women wanted to kill their two-year olds? You may think it's wrong, but who are you to impose that belief on them?

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  30. I can see why people are offended that you connect a lynching murder of a 14 year-old boy (which became a catalyst for the civil-rights movement and NOT the anti-abortion movement) and abortion ... Unfortunately, you're not really accomplishing that goal and you're actually offending and insulting some people.

    First of all, I am not "linking" abortion and the lynching of Emmitt Till. If you read the post, the point is that people were outraged by the killing of Emmitt Till because they saw the actual, physical result of what had been done to him. It made it real and motivated people to end the horror of racism. And why did they see that, Neil? The answer is because his mother wanted them to!

    My point was that showing video or images of abortion makes people confront the same kind of evidence and see what abortion actually does. Once they see it, it is hard to engage in the slogans and empty clichés like those that have been repeatedly offered by commenters here. If that "offends" and "insults" people by hurting their feelings that is not my intention, though I don’t quite understand how it would hurt someone’s feelings. It's telling that they would be "offended" by the talking about such things but they are apparently NOT offended by abortion itself.

    If it offends their moral sensibilities – that’s the whole point.

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  31. I read your intro to your blog and faith has had a bad rap because it makes people stop embracing empirical evidence (because empirical evidence only takes us so far, and that's where faith comes in nicely) and those who have faith try to push their beliefs on those who don't have/want it.

    Well, Neil, your comment contradicts itself -- and everything I have said about faith. Don't impose the views and practices of others on me and then hold me accountable to a different standard.

    Yes, some practice a blind, wishful "faith" that they then try to "impose" on others. Not me. My definition of faith (and the Biblical definition by the way) is an active trust based on evidence. I don't just run out of evidence -- I base my trust on the evidence.

    As for "imposing my view," I do no such thing. I started what I do because I believe these things are worth thinking about. I try to convince others likewise. I didn't put a gun to your head to make you come read this blog, you came here on your own. If you don't like what I say, that's your perogative ... but please quit trying to impose your views on me.

    As it relates to abortion, all I can do is try to make the case that my view is correct and convince others to stop what I consider to be an immoral practice. It is YOUR side that has imposed its view on me by the brute force of a law based on a phantom "discovery" of privacy in the Constitution.

    I love it when you (and others like you) accuse me of doing the very thing you claim to abhor.

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  32. If all the pro-lifers want abortions to be stopped, figure out a way to deal with all the orphans and unwanted children in this world, THEN make it against the law. Until then, you're saying that you're OK with creating life, just not having to assume the caring/responsibility for it.

    Sorry Neil, but this really doesn't make any logical sense. Why do you think these two objectives are mutually exclusive? Why can't we do both? FYI, there are many people who are working diligently in both areas. And, whether they are or aren't, this does NOTHING to justify or explain away immorality of abortion itself.

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  33. By the way, "Obama has already shown his stance and lack of moral courage regarding abortion" is pretty catty. You're probably not going to convince someone (who doesn't believe the same things as you) of the validity of your argument by passing judgment.

    Well, Neil, maybe this will help: http://true-horizon.blogspot.com/2008/09/audacity-of-nope.html

    I'd love for you to read that post about what Obama has actually done (not what he's said -- what he's done) where abortion is concerned and tell me he is not a moral coward where the issue is concerned. Even if you agree with him, he doesn't have the spine to stand up for his own alleged convictions. If telling that truth is unpopular, so be it.

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  34. Bob, the use of Emmett Till as an example of bringing an issue to the forefront via a picture of reality might seem like a good idea, but if you want people to see the reality of what abortion is, just use pictures of a discarded fetus or something to that extent. I think people would understand the point you are making by simply showing what abortion is (or the result of it is). And I think that though many people support the right to have an abortion, they are not necessarily "for" it.

    With my point of telling other women what they can or can't do, certainly I don't agree with a woman killing a 2 year old. However, a fetus is still a part of a woman's body and she still has domain over her body, NOT THE STATE. Would you rather a woman kill the fetus in a safe/sanitary enviornment, or in a back alley, by drinking excessively, starvation, using drugs, punching herself, etc. etc. etc.? Would we try to have a legal system set up to punish them and treat women who had killed the fetus themselves like criminals? Would a court be able to ever prove it? Again, I'm not saying I agree with abortion at all, but women who get preganant who are willing to not go through the pregnancy should have options. And yes, I'd rather a woman have an abortion than having the kid and abusing him, killing him by neglect or some other way, or being a drug addict and killing the fetus that way. (I'm not saying most women who have abortions are like this; I'm sure the vast majority aren't but it's an example.)

    Speaking of options, what do you believe for a woman who's become pregnant by rape or incest? Or has a baby that has become extremely disabled or is threatening the mother's life? Are you saying you wouldn't make exceptions? If not, I'm glad they have laws that give women the option which the pro-lifers would not.

    I'm sorry if you think my comment about taking care of children once they're born is illogical. I see it as pretty simple: kids around the world are being born into a world of violence, with AIDS, abusive parents, etc., but no one is taking care of them. If abortion were outlawed, how can pro-lifers be OK with brining more children into those things when those women wanted to have an abortion? So, it's essentially OK to brink kids into a world of pain and suffering, as long as you don't kill them before they're born. Sorry, but I'm not sure which one is worse. And if abortion were outlawed, pro-lifers should have to adopt the kids from women who wanted abortions. I don't agree with the possibility of: well, the kid's born, so let the government take care of it now because I didn't want the mother to have an abortion.

    Again, I don't think most people agree with having abortions, but should it be against the law? No.

    Btw, I rarely like or trust politicians and my preference for one over another is based on a scale of how much one is worse or not than another. I'm a fan of Obama in the sense that he's a way better President (so far of course) than Bush Jr. was. You sound surprised a politician has failed to deliver or says one thing and does another....

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  35. I'm not telling you to do anything. The law exists for those who want an option. No one is forcing YOU to have an abortion. And I am most certainly not forcing anything on YOU. You're the one who a problem with the law. If you don't like it, go somewhere where you'll feel more comfortable.

    I don't agree with the idea that you can't take your own life or ask a doctor to do it for you, but I don't tell anyone what to believe and I don't pass judgement on them if they disagree with me. And I'm not going to start crying about belief systems being imposed on me.

    You are entitled your opinion and I am mine, but don't act like a victim if things aren't the way you like them to be.

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  36. Well, Neil, I have to admit this is getting tiresome. You apparently are not really reading what I actually write and prefer to respond using the same old lines your side likes to regurgitate over and over again. For instance ...

    If abortion were outlawed, how can pro-lifers be OK with bringing more children into those things when those women wanted to have an abortion?

    I asked you why you think these are mutually exclusive. No response. I said that there are plenty of pro-lifers doing both. No acknowledgment. If you don't want to respond to what I actually say, this seems rather pointless.

    Second: certainly I don't agree with a woman killing a 2 year old.

    You fail to see that the only differences between the 2-year old and the unborn are matters of location and level of development. Where you are, or your level of development do not change what you are. I believe that human beings are valuable and should be protected in virtue of the kind of thing they are. I don't see how you justify killing the unborn while simultaneously thinking it's not OK to kill a two year old. They are both human beings. Why do you defend one and not the other?

    Which brings me to my final point:

    a fetus is still a part of a woman's body and she still has domain over her body

    Wow. If you really believe that "a fetus is still part of a woman's body," you need to retake high school biology or at least read someone who is a little more competent in the field.

    Your mother's egg provides half your DNA. The other half comes from your father's sperm. At the moment of fertilization the two combine to form a NEW, DISTINCT, DNA-COMPLETE, LIVING human being which develops from that moment forward until the day it dies. If you really think that an unborn baby is some kind of parasite, you need to get a hold of an embryology book and do a little studying.

    That FACT, and that reality, is the basis of my defense of the most defenseless human beings. It's as simple as that. All the heart-wrenching circumstances and hypothetical situations you offer do nothing but deny or obscure that simple reality. I find the fact that you would defend such a practice for reasons of inconvenience or personal hardship sad.

    I don't know what else to say ...

    But, in the future, if you want to dialogue, I welcome it. All I ask is that you respond to my actual points (you STILL don't get the reason for mentioning Emmitt Till) by actually reading them and not continue to react to what you've heard others say. The old cliches get old.

    Thanks ...

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  37. No, I do get the reason you mentioned Emmett Till; I not only explained why it wouldn't be a good idea to use that analogy, but what you probably should've done instead to avoid some of the backlash. My original comment stated that I felt like you were using the analogy to elicit something more than a gut reaction by using Emmett Till to evoke more sympathy to your cause, which ultimately failed because it bothered many of us instead.

    If you want to take my comment about the fetus being a part of a woman's body literally, fine. But I think the vast majority of readers would understand what I meant. Thanks for the biology refresher though, it's not condescending at all.

    I understand the entire basis of your argument, and I explained why I believe you (and other anti-abortionists) are not thinking of other possibilities, or more importantly, solutions. AGAIN, I don't approve of abortions, but I don't think they should be against the law for women who NEED it, or who are willing to harm the fetus and themselves if they don't want the baby.

    Even though I choose to not respond to one of your points to give you some credit, you insist. You say anit-abortionists and caring for unwanted children or taking responsibility for their creation are not mutually exclusive(and I'm sure there are instances where they aren't) but generally speaking I don't think that anti-abortionists are taking in unwanted kids en masse. It's human nature to complain about something but not to fix it. Hence, I commented about solutions needing to be made other than outlawing abortions.

    Personally, I have nothing against you and what you believe. I just get annoyed by people who act like they're a victim of oppression when there are options. I'm not forcing anything on you and I'm very glad you aren't forcing anything on me. And I never said you in particular forced anything on me, but that people of faith do that to those who aren't. (Though both sides are guilty of doing just that, faith-based edicts are not usually based on something empirical which is why it gets a bad rap.)

    Btw, this is the last time I respond because it's obvious you read what I write, comment selectively, and then talk down to me. So, good luck irritating people and playing a victim in the process; judging by the responses here, you're doing a great job.

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  38. In a nutshell, Neil is saying: "I don't approve of abortion because it kills an innocent human being but I don't want to tell people they shouldn't kill innocent human beings."

    That's a summary of the entire morally relativistic aspect of the culture we live in. He and others here want to focus on the rights, and needs, and inconveniences, and problems of women. I understand all those and am completely aware of, and supportive of, programs and services meant to alleviate those difficulties -- like adoption and pregnancy support centers.

    But the problem is that, while focusing solely on those issues, people forget that there are distinct, whole, living human beings being ripped apart and thrown in the trash (literally) or cut up and used for "research" and "therapies." That is morally wrong and should be stopped.

    If pro-abortionists want to focus on the former and find it "irritating" that I choose to focus on the latter, so be it. It is also human nature to dismiss and ignore something as irritating or "insulting" and get angry about others pointing it out when we know in our hearts we are doing something wrong but want to rationalize it in some way to make ourselves feel better. But to do so in the face of hard scientific and philosophical evidence that we are perpetuating a horrific moral evil is the height of human arrogance.

    I just think it's worth pointing that out.

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  39. I agree with the person who said we need to teach birth control to stop abortions. Simply saying don't have sex and abortions are wrong is not a solution. I believe that birth control for women should be sold over the counter and that the topic of sex should not be such a taboo. There are so many young people having sex, but when you ask them to talk about it with you so you can inform them of proper birth control methods and ways to keep themselves safe, they blush and get embarressed. If people are to embarressed to talk about sex they definitley should not be having it. I think instead of spending so much time campaigning to make abortion illegal you should help find a solution to stopping an unwaned pregnancy BEFORE conception even takes place.

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  40. Christel -- you bring up a completely different topic here -- one which has proved to lead to MORE "unplanned" pregnancies (whatever they are) and therefore more of the same rationalizations and irrelevant discussions in favor of abortion.

    The topic here is abortion itself and the undeniable reality that it constitutes a grave moral wrong. Please read my previous comment (just above yours) and try to understand that each of those side issues has absolutely no bearing on the topic I am trying to address.

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  41. In a nutshell, Neil is saying: "I don't approve of abortion because it kills an innocent human being but I don't want to tell people they shouldn't kill innocent human beings."

    OK, THIS is my last response because there is so much more to what I've been saying which you've either missed or are now conveniently ignoring. Thank you for putting words into my mouth, though; I never said I don't want to tell other people what to do, but I did say I don't tell other people what to do, especially given they have legal rights.

    I do believe abortion is for the most part wrong, but I do not believe it is wrong if it is deemed medically necessary or the situation causes moral ambiguity. I am not going to make a moral judgment on people who chose it because I do not know their circumstances nor claim to do so. However, I do believe many who do have abortions probably have the punishment of a lifetime of shame, guilt, and/or regret.

    The morality/immorality of abortion is not a black and white issue; there is a grey area which most of the staunch anti-abortionists I've met don't seem to want to deal with. I may be wrong, but you seem to think it's a black and white issue. (I say this because you still haven't responded to the instance of a woman becoming pregnant by rape or incest, or being in mortal danger if she continues her pregnancy. If a woman gets pregnant after being raped, it is morally responsible to force her to go through with the pregnancy?)

    This is the reality of the situation; the sooner you realize that a moral conundrum exists within that grey area, the sooner you'll be able to have an intelligent and open-minded discussion with others (who don't think the same way you do) without sticking to your talking points and repeating yourself.


    Christel -- you bring up a completely different topic here -- one which has proved to lead to MORE "unplanned" pregnancies (whatever they are) and therefore more of the same rationalizations and irrelevant discussions in favor of abortion.

    It's good to see you provided empirical evidence which is objective and widely accepted among policy makers and public health advocates. Studies accepted by most public institutes show that poverty, lack of comprehensive education, underage drinking, etc. are the real drivers (other than simply not practicing safe/responsible sex) for the increase of unplanned pregnancies. (Google studies and findings from the JHA/SAM, JAMA, AMA, APA, etc. all reporting that for unplanned pregnancies (with definitions) to be reduced, sex education needs to be comprehensive and contraceptives need to be made more readily available.)

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  42. I do believe abortion is for the most part wrong, but I do not believe it is wrong if it is deemed medically necessary

    I agree. If a woman's life is in danger we have a gut-wrenchingly difficult decision to make, no doubt. In that case we have to make a moral judgment about which life to save if we cannot save both. But in making that decision, we are pressed by the reality that there are TWO lives at stake and that they are both valuable in virtue of what they are.

    But your next statement is a far different thing:

    I don not believe it is wrong if the situation causes moral ambiguity ... there is a grey area which most of the staunch anti-abortionists I've met don't seem to want to deal with.

    Please give an example of where you see having to make a morally ambiguous choice between KILLING an innocent human being and NOT KILLING an innocent human being. I can't think of any. You demonstrate that you miss the point, Neil, when you try to use the following as examples of 'morally ambiguous":

    I may be wrong, but you seem to think it's a black and white issue. (I say this because you still haven't responded to the instance of a woman becoming pregnant by rape or incest ... If a woman gets pregnant after being raped, it is morally responsible to force her to go through with the pregnancy?)

    First, this red herring constitutes a tiny fraction of 1% of all abortions. Most are done on demand for little more than convenience issues.

    That said, I am NOT saying this is an easy case. I surely would never want to face it. But to understand my position, you have to understand that you are asking to kill an innocent human being because of the disgusting and unfortunate situation that someone else has created. In other words, the only way you can justify such a thing is to assume that the unborn baby is a distinct, living human being -- and then hold that it is morally acceptable to make that innocent human being pay the price for a horrible situation, or ... you have to assume that the unborn is NOT a human being.

    I can't do either of those. If you found that your neighbors one-year old little girl was conceived in incest, would that justify killing her? The answer is no different than the one you give for the unborn.

    No one is going to "force her to go through with the pregnancy," Neil. You seem to think that pro-lifers are going to walk around with pitchforks making people have babies. (To be fair, there may be some like that, but I don't know who they are). All I'm saying is that the alternative is morally unacceptable and I am trying to convince others of the same.

    I personally know a woman who faced this exact situation (rape) who honored the value of the life inside her, had the baby, and gave it up for adoption. That is a courageous act that deserves recognition and respect. It deserves it because she placed that value of human life above her own personal inconveniences, desires and the horrible pain it brought to her.

    That is the position I'm arguing for and I hope you can admit it is not only reasonable, but desirable -- certainly more honoring of human life than the 99% of abortions that are done for reasons of personal convenience.

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  43. BTW -- I want to address one more thing Neil said because it is important:

    If you want to take my comment about the fetus being a part of a woman's body literally, fine. But I think the vast majority of readers would understand what I meant. Thanks for the biology refresher though, it's not condescending at all.

    Just for clarification, Neil (if you are still reading), after re-reading my comment, I can understand why you would find it condescending. For that, I apologize. But that was not my intent. The reason I went through the "biology refresher" is because there are many pro-abortionists who DO claim that the fetus is either a parasite, or a "growth," or a "lump of cells." Your actual comment (cut and pasted) was this:

    "However, a fetus is still a part of a woman's body and she still has domain over her body, NOT THE STATE."

    So I think it is fair to see why I assumed you agreed with that point of view.

    Anyway, my intent was to point out that the fetus is a separate, distinct individual with its own complete set of DNA and therefore -- in my opinion -- NOT under the mother's "domain" but that it exists as a unique person who also has rights and deserves protection.

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  44. Wow, this debate flared up incredibly fast and has reached levels I've scarcely seen in my years of debating such difficult issues.

    Bob - I'd like to commend you on remaining so level-headed during such a controversial and difficult to manage discussion as this.

    Neil - I have to agree with Bob with regards to your (seeming) unwillingness to provide a direct answer to the very specific question with regards to the absolute morality of the act of abortion itself. Biology confirms every step of the way that once fertilization has occurred, there is a distinctly unique being within the womb of his or her mother with its own genetic makeup.

    Further proof beyond basic DNA sampling and genetics can be found in the scientific fact that the child may even face difficulty in development due to possessing a different blood RH to the mother (RH- or RH+). This subtle difference, due to the initial sharing of blood, can cause the child to be treated by the mother's immune system as a threat because their blood is incompatible.

    Based on this wealth of scientific knowledge, what Bob and I are saying is that there is clear evidence that post-fertilization there is a completely different living being in the womb that is in principle no different than a child of any other [young] age. This is where Bob's references to mothers and their 2 year old children come into play.

    Whether the young child [fertilization to at least partial independence] is inside the womb or outside, you still have: 1) 100% genetic makeup, 2) total dependency on the mother/parents for survival, and 3) a HUMAN life.

    Given the above statements, assuming that we all agree that: 1) a HUMAN life is valuable, and 2) to take a HUMAN life is morally wrong [murder]; then it logically follows that abortion, despite its prettied up description as the "early termination of pregnancy/a fetus," is by clear direct logic murder and therefore morally wrong.

    This is the argument at the heart of Bob's original post and subseuent comments if I am reading it clearly. If I have misread or misconstrued anything, then I apologize and welcome correction. I too have seen numerous young women who have made the very difficult decision over how to handle an unplanned pregnancy, and seen how it has wrecked or brought joy to their lives. I can't speak for too many who have made the choice to abort, but I can tell you that those who had their babies have never loved so deeply or been so happy despite the small discomforts they have been made to bear for their choice.

    And another small note to go back to the topic of Emmett Till. Bob did not intend to elicit a primary response to the mention of Till's lynching, but rather used good journalism technique to show a pattern of societal action and reaction that he and many others hope may come in response to people's public exposure of the pictures and documented evidence of abortion's dark truth that he did link to at the end of his article.

    I'm done for tonight, but I do enjoy a good discussion and will probably follow this posting for a while. Thanks for the initial article, Bob.

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  45. Thanks hxchip,

    You give a great summary ... probably clearer than I offered. I also appreciate the blood RH factor point you make. I've had to deal with it 5 times so you'd think I would have thought of it myself! More scientific evidence on the pro-life side.

    I appreciate your input. Please stop back ...

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  46. what everyone seems to be forgetting here is that, yes, everyone is entitled to their opinion. everyone has the right to express their opinions. it is an entirely different thing to FORCE your opinions on everyone else. and to try to FORCE people to think the way you do. and to try to make laws that FORCE people to live the way you think they live. i do not believe in god, and frankly i find the whole idea of religion idiotic. but i'm not going out trying to ban the bible. nor do i go out telling people they are wrong for not thinking like me. you have your opinions, i have mine. so a woman goes out and gets an abortion...so what? who cares? so you think it's wrong? fine. that doesn't mean everyone else does. so you consider it morally wrong? fine. that just means your morals are different. doesn't make you wrong or right. what is wrong is when you try to legislate morality. no-one, and i mean no-one, is EVER going to tell me how to think. and don't even use the religious argument. not everyone is religious. just like the vegitarians out there. so you don't eat meat? fine, whatever. doesn't mean i don't and that does not give you the right to FORCE people give up meat. i sure never will. and, no, childbirth is NOT a miracle. there is nothing miraculous about it. just nature...nothing more. that's kind of like baking a pie and calling it miraculous. and people go on about the "rights" of the fetus. what "rights" would those be exactly? the right to vote? the right to peaceful assembly? the right to bear arms maybe? maybe that's what you can do...find the aborted fetuses, hand them a voter registration card and an ak-47 and send them on their merry way and all will be well. and don't even use the "it's murder" argument. who are you to say what is murder and what is not? be the definition of murder every time you pull a weed out of your garden, it'd murder. every time you swat a mosquito dining peacefully on your arm it's murder. by definition, EVERYONE on the planet is a murderer to some degree or other...even you. anyway...i never take people like you seriously. by people like you i mean people who mangle the english language, like substituting numbers for letters (like you do in your "name"). and by the way...here you are whining about people not using their real name. well let me ask you...why aren't you? what are YOU afraid of? so which do you want to be, the pot or the kettle? each one is just as black.

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  47. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  48. I was truly disgusted how hard black people struggled to even be considered humans in this country just so conservative retrograde white people can use they suffering whenever and however they can as an example in "zealots" fight like abortion.
    This man 's great grand pa was probably fighting against the civil rights for negroes.
    As for the abortion issue.. i think Abortion is a precious right that needs to be held by woman preciously!!!
    i am another anonymous who wants to remain as such just asking you white people to fight your fights but not to take any part of our difficult history as an example for your own battles.
    that's about all you try to share with us and we don t like that... use your history.. and experience of struggle and suffering if you have any!

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  49. Oohh...this is one of those blogs where contrary opinions that are hard to refute get deleted.

    My bad, I shouldn't have even TRIED to comment.

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  50. It's so ironically sad that you chose to remove Thembi's comment. I now understand the game which you are playing.

    Freedom of speech is free as long we agree with you.

    Abortion is wrong as long as we agree with you that it's murder.

    Emmitt Till's death can be likened to aborted fetal deaths as long as we can look at disfigured fetal remains and be "called to action."

    Here's another lynching you may want to liken to your cause:
    http://dallassouthblog.com/2008/10/04/howard-wittchicago-tribune-with-more-on-death-of-brandon-mcclelland/

    Good luck with that.

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  51. everyone is entitled to their opinion. everyone has the right to express their opinions. it is an entirely different thing to FORCE your opinions on everyone else.

    Correct, and my opinion is what you will find here. I am not forcing it on you. Conversely, I have argued here that abortion is the killing of an innocent human being. You have not refuted my argument. Therefore, those who promote abortion on demand are defending the taking of innocent human life by the force of law -- which, by definition, is imposing THAT view on society. Such an act is NOT morally neutral.

    Your argument that taking the life of an innocent human being is equal to swatting a mosquito on my arm or pulling a weed in my garden would be laughable if it wasn't so callously sick.
    i never take people like you seriously

    Then I'm not quite sure why you are so upset by my arguments?!

    by people like you i mean people who mangle the english language, like substituting numbers for letters (like you do in your "name"). and by the way...here you are whining about people not using their real name. well let me ask you...why aren't you? what are YOU afraid of? so which do you want to be, the pot or the kettle? each one is just as black.

    Misspellings and grammar aside, all you need to do is click on my screen name and you can find out more about me than you probably want to know. It's not rocket science.

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  52. @Thembi:

    Get 'em, girl! This blog post is sickening.

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  53. Not so fast there Thembi. In my response to "anonymous" I accidentally deleted your comment, but here it is in its entirety:

    Thembi said:
    This post is vile and disgusting.

    Whether I believe in abortion rights or not is irrelevant and I have no desire to debate that specific issue, but I will tell you where this piece fails.

    Emmitt Till's mother put his body on display to show people how DISGUSTING and VIOLENTLY he'd been treated. She called attention to HER NEXT OF KIN who'd lost his life in an ILLEGAL attack. This happened BECAUSE HE WAS BLACK, THREATENED HIS HUMAN RIGHTS and therefore it gave MAINSTREAM attention to the civil rights movement for those with their heads in the sand - black folks already knew what kind of terrors were going on.

    In your proposed propaganda campaign, where is the right of ANYONE BUT the next of kin to display aborted fetuses? Who are you or any movement to encroach on anyones privacy that way, especially if aborted fetuses are 'people' as you suggest? What rights are being ILLEGALLY violated in abortion? None. Not a single one. You blatantly twisted Mrs Till's words and intentions. She wanted the world to see the horrors of a CONSTITUTIONAL CRIME, not the horrors of a CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT. Further, the idea that seeing aborted fetuses, which is just as stomach turning as any other medical procedure, should be enough to 'gross people out' into being pro-life is not genuinely changing public opinion (epecially since most people have already seen such photos). That is not how you change a law. Mrs. Till was not aiming to gross people out. She was showing a reality that most of America did not know about. There is no common ground here with abortion.

    So as you attempt to muster support for your cause, all youve done is demonstrate that you arent thinking a single thing out, just emoting and trying to shock. Do better.

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  54. Thembi:

    "Hard to refute" :-)

    This post is vile and disgusting.

    Correct. So is abortion. It says something about a commenter when they find comments "vile and disgusting" but not the taking of innocent human life.

    Frankly, you don't understand the pro-life argument at all. Whether something is legal or constitutional or racist has nothing to do with whether or not it is morally wrong. In fact, slavery was all of those things. Are you suggesting that it was not morally wrong?

    Second, you said Mrs. Till was showing "the reality that most of America did not know about."

    EXACTLY.

    And that is what we aim to do with abortion -- precisely for people like you who think they are "arguing" in support of something they obviously know NOTHING about.

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  55. "Anonymous" #87 said:

    i think Abortion is a precious right that needs to be held by woman preciously!!! i am another anonymous who wants to remain as such just asking you white people to fight your fights but not to take any part of our difficult history as an example for your own battles.

    So killing innocent human beings (notice that I don't know or care what race they are) is NOT a grave moral wrong -- as I have said -- but a "precious right"

    ... and you think I am disgusting?! Interesting.

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  56. @Av8torBob

    Frankly, you don't understand the pro-life argument at all. Whether something is legal or constitutional or racist has nothing to do with whether or not it is morally wrong. In fact, slavery was all of those things. Are you suggesting that it was not morally wrong?

    As I said, I have no desire to argue about or even really discuss the abortion issue itself. In fact I didn't even make my personal views on abortion clear (unless impossible to be pro-life and disagree with your analogy). So please, dont tell me what I do and do not understand, nor what I know nothing about, especially when it comes to my personal experience on this Earth - for all you know I'm head aborted fetus disposer at the local hospital, or maybe I picket planned parenthood every day. Youre not the almighty, so dont be quite so presumptuous.

    Id even be willing to give you a mini-pass if youd compared published video of the horrors of slavery that helped change public opinion which led to law. That would stil be a weak argument considering no video could encapsulate that, but Id at least dismiss you as culturally insensitive and in need of a history lesson. But you didnt even do that.

    The pro-life argument is crystal clear to me and youre right, whether something is legal or not isnt the meter for morality. But the fact that this ambiguity exists does not give you free license to create analogy where there is none. What happened to Till is/was NOT accepted in our society and instead covered up for hundreds of years. Abortion, notsomuch. Zealots like you have already done a great job at exposing most of America to pictures of fetuses and things we'd rather not see. In fact Id be very surprised to find a person who'd never seen one online. And guess what? Your attempts have been failures, because this country is still upholds abortion rights.

    So in sum, zealot propoganda is all over, adding more wont help your shock and awe efforts at changing public opinion.

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  57. I also think its interesting that your STILL unable to establish YOUR right to publicize images of the death of an unborn child...the hubris of your 'movement' amazes me.

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  58. As I said, I have no desire to argue about or even really discuss the abortion issue itself. In fact I didn't even make my personal views on abortion clear (unless impossible to be pro-life and disagree with your analogy).

    Frankly, Thembi, your opinion is irrelevant to my argument. It really doesn't matter what you or I think about it. I don't need a "pass," and I couldn't care less if I am being "culturally insensitive."

    In fact, if this is what the "culture" finds acceptable, I HOPE you find my view culturally insensitive.

    I'll try this one more time ...

    I am simply making the case that:

    1) The taking of innocent human life is immoral.
    2) Abortion takes an innocent human life.
    3) Therefore, abortion is immoral.

    If you want to refute something, refute that -- or any part of it.

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  59. Aside from demonstrating that you dont understand the term "culturally insensitive," all youre doing is spouting dogma.

    As Ive said now three times or so: I'm not here to argue with you about whether or not abortion is wrong. I dont find that discussion to be productive, especially with people who feel strongly about it like yourself.

    What I am telling you is that your comparison to Emmitt Till is deeply flawed. If you have no desire to refute that statement then fine. Otherwise we're done here.

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  60. This is comical: I also think its interesting that your STILL unable to establish YOUR right to publicize images of the death of an unborn child...the hubris of your 'movement' amazes me.

    Well, Thembi, since when do I have to establish a "right" to publicize images of anything? Are you seriously suggesting that the "right" to kill an innocent human being supercedes the "right" to post a picture of the same thing?!

    A summary of Thembi's view:

    "I think it's OK to kill innocent, defenseless human beings. But you showing a picture of it demonstrates hubris because I shouldn't be forced to confront what abortion actually does."

    Talk about "hubris"!

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  61. Aside from demonstrating that you dont understand the term "culturally insensitive," all youre doing is spouting dogma.

    First, I fully understand what "culturally insensitive" means. I explained that I couldn't care less if it's culturally insensitive. Secondly, you are spouting politically correct "dogma." Why are you allowed to do that but I'm not?

    As Ive said now three times or so: I'm not here to argue with you about whether or not abortion is wrong.

    Of course, you don't want to argue about whether or not abortion is wrong! That's the point. It is indefensible -- but at least you admit that much.

    What I am telling you is that your comparison to Emmitt Till is deeply flawed.

    Vacuous assertions do not an argument make. You have not demonstrated that it is "flawed." You've only demonstrated that you don't like it. Does that mean that any argument that you don't like is flawed?

    ... and you accuse me of demonstrating hubris? Interesting.

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  62. Well, Thembi, since when do I have to establish a "right" to publicize images of anything? Are you seriously suggesting that the "right" to kill an innocent human being supercedes the "right" to post a picture of the same thing?!

    Wow I guess you never heard of photo rights. My point was regarding Emmitt Till...remember him, that topic youre trying to avoid? If babies have the same rights as humans, and you definitely dont have the right to distribute photos of someones loved one's mangled body, then how COULD you have the right? Thats treating aborted babies like objects or trash - isnt that the exact opposite of your brand of pro-life activism?

    A summary of Thembi's view:

    "I think it's OK to kill innocent, defenseless human beings. But you showing a picture of it demonstrates hubris because I shouldn't be forced to confront what abortion actually does."


    This is going to be my final comment because you STILL insist on telling me what my views on abortion are. Its laughable to everyone reading, I'm sure, and a huge waste of time, because never once did I say that abortion should be legal. I also made it clear that ive seen the kind of pictures your brilliant idea would aim to distribute. This is why the fringe of the pro-life movement struggles so much - you alienate people by telling them that if they dont agree with everything you say, they just want to kill babies.

    At no point did you actually respond to the Emmitt Till issue, just vomit up the abortion is murder script. Fine, abortion is murder - then what? Everything I said STILL has the same merit - the comparison to Till is just vile, and you dont have to be pro-life to believe that.

    Telling people what they think and then arguing with what youve conjured up is just not an effective debate technique.

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  63. Yeah after getting your last comment Im definitely done. If you read my first comment where I break down your analogy trait by trait and show how it fails, and only see opinion, I worry for your movement even more.

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  64. Oh Thembi, it is sad to listen to you try to pigeonhole me into a "movement" instead of facing the real issue. I also doubt the sincerity of your "worry about [my] movement." This is not about Emmitt Till, and it's not about pictures. It's about facing the reality of abortion -- just like Emmitt's mother made people face the reality of racism. But it is telling that you are more interested in photo rights than the killing of innocents.

    Fine, abortion is murder - then what?

    Then stop it.

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  65. t's about facing the reality of abortion -- just like Emmitt's mother made people face the reality of racism.

    It IS about E. Till! I repeat myself for the FIFTH time. Its so clear you just got a little ahead of yourself with this post. If you have no desire to discuss your comparison, FINE. Bow out on your own blog. Unless you address THESE points, with something other than "abortion is also wrong," youre simply out of gas:

    Emmitt Till's mother put his body on display to show people how DISGUSTING and VIOLENTLY he'd been treated. She called attention to HER NEXT OF KIN who'd lost his life in an ILLEGAL attack. This happened BECAUSE HE WAS BLACK, THREATENED HIS HUMAN RIGHTS and therefore it gave MAINSTREAM attention to the civil rights movement for those with their heads in the sand - black folks already knew what kind of terrors were going on.

    In your proposed propaganda campaign, where is the right of ANYONE BUT the next of kin to display aborted fetuses? Who are you or any movement to encroach on anyones privacy that way, especially if aborted fetuses are 'people' as you suggest? What rights are being ILLEGALLY violated in abortion? None. Not a single one. You blatantly twisted Mrs Till's words and intentions. She wanted the world to see the horrors of a CONSTITUTIONAL CRIME, not the horrors of a CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT. Further, the idea that seeing aborted fetuses, which is just as stomach turning as any other medical procedure, should be enough to 'gross people out' into being pro-life is not genuinely changing public opinion (especially since most people have already seen such photos). That is not how you change a law. Mrs. Till was not aiming to gross people out. She was showing a reality that most of America did not know about. There is no common ground here with abortion.

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  66. Oh and by the way, I have no choice but to pigeonhole you into a 'movement' because I made it clear that Im not going to debate you on abortion, which means I could easily be on your side. Yet instead of being positive and aligning common thinkers or even trying to bring me to YOUR side, you decide that I must be prochoice because I thought your comparison stunk, and that anyone who doesnt agree with your every word is wrong. You leave no room for a person who is also pro-life to disagree with you on how you further the cause. Smells like dogma to me.

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  67. Oh, I'm sorry, I thought you were "definitely done." Glad to engage ...

    Emmitt Till's mother put his body on display to show people how DISGUSTING and VIOLENTLY he'd been treated.

    Correct. And the dismembered fetus is also disgusting and violently treated. So far, we are in agreement that showing the public pictures of aborted fetuses EXACTLY parallels the reason that Emmitt Till's mother chose to do the same thing.

    She called attention to HER NEXT OF KIN who'd lost his life in an ILLEGAL attack.

    I'm not quite sure how the legal status of the attack is relevant. YOU already admitted that the legality of abortion does not justify its morality. Hitler gassed Jews "legally" (under his country's law) in Nazi Germany. Does this mean we should not be able to show pictures of Holocaust atrocities?

    This happened BECAUSE HE WAS BLACK, THREATENED HIS HUMAN RIGHTS and therefore it gave MAINSTREAM attention to the civil rights movement

    Fetuses are tiny, whole, innocent, human beings whose human rights are being violated in the most final and horrific way possible. This would seem to deserve mainstream attention to consider their human rights.

    Who are you or any movement to encroach on anyones privacy that way, especially if aborted fetuses are 'people' as you suggest? What rights are being ILLEGALLY violated in abortion?

    Once again, you've already conceded that privacy, and legality do not confer moral acceptability. This is not about the woman but the fetus -- a fact you keep trying to avoid.

    [Mrs. Till] wanted the world to see the horrors of a CONSTITUTIONAL CRIME, not the horrors of a CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT.

    YOU have already admitted that constitutionality does not supercede the question of moral right and wrong.

    You're 0 for 5. And every issue you raise is irrelevant.

    Hmmm. It seems that you are correct when you say that one of us does not want to discuss the salient issue.

    Also, I'm not sure how to "align common thinkers" on an issue like this. There are two views:

    1) Killing innocent human beings is OK.
    2) Killing innocent human beings is morally wrong.

    Can you suggest where the middle ground is there?

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  68. "Disgusting anonymous 87"

    Basically you have no business using Emett till's death in this fight simply because you are a white person.. I know this is very blunt and very simplistic but I ll say it again, your very own great grand pa probably owned slaves.
    Unless you yourself have campaigned for civil rights, Do Not USE example YOU white people have made of Us, KIlling us, treating us like less than Human, as an argument for any of the battles you feel you need to fight you understand???
    I ll say it one more time, Use your own experience of suffering and struggle, if you have any...
    And if the only pool you can dig from is the Black History.. THEN i proved my point.....

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  69. Though it could be a mistake, I allowed this last "comment" for only reason: To show the ridiculously vile lengths some will go to in order to rationalize their flawed thinking.

    Let me say this as clearly as I can. Those who killed Emmitt Till engaged in an evil, immoral act for which there is NO justification. I believe this is true because Emmitt Till was a human being created in the image of God.

    Abortion is also evil because it takes the life of a human being created in God's image.

    Showing the reality of either of the above for the purpose of pointing out how evil they are is warranted precisely because it rightfully evokes moral outrage in the observer. Notice that NONE of my reasoning here depends on the race, sex, religion, or any other accidental property of the victim.

    I AM campaigning for civil rights -- the civil rights of innocent human beings regardless of their color -- and I am doing so precisely because I believe in their inherent humanity.

    That you would avoid the truth of that reasoning by attempting to dismiss me because of the color of my skin is ignorant, ridiculous and, yes, RACIST TO THE CORE. The fact that you would ever consider such a thing says more about you than it ever will about me.

    I only allowed your vile remark to be posted here to demonstrate your ignorance. I can promise you that garbage like this will NEVER be allowed here again.

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  70. ...when your arguments don't hold water, this kind of devastating comment always works well.

    Thanks for playing.

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  71. Alright, so I've sat and read your post twice and I've also read every single comment, however, the point you're trying to make and the examples you're trying to connect still aren't coming together to me at all.

    I'm not saying that you're wrong and I'm not saying how dare you connect these two topics that have nothing to do with each other. I felt that you just half-hazardly placed the quote of Emmitt Till's brutal murder in with your stance of abortion and failed to deliver true explaination as to why these two topics connect.

    When you first open your argument, you explain your stance on abortion and you also explain your belief that in order for it to change people need to do something about it.

    You then introduce the quote about Emmitt Till and then abruptly ended your argument. At the end you explain that you agree with the author of the book you were quoting, however the quote showed no argument. Instead, it was a mere summarization of a historical event.

    The majority of your post seemed more like it was about the start of the civil rights movement and not about the evils of abortion. By not spending a little more time explaining the connection or at least showing the author's connection of the two topics, it opened up the door for people to misinterpret the point you were trying to make.

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  72. This was the last of a series of posts on pro-life issues. Maybe you need to go through and read them all to get a little more explanation.

    I'm not sure why you find it hard to connect the Emmett Till case with abortion. I'll try one more time ...

    The civil rights movement was started, in part, because the photos of Emmett Till showed people how evil racism actually was. The reality of the pictures struck a nerve with people because it made the horror of racism real.

    Showing people pictures/video of actual abortion will also show how evil abortion actually is. It would help people see that abortion is not some abstract right to privacy. It actually kills innocent human beings.

    When they see the reality of that, I believe it would motivate people to oppose abortion in the same way Emmett Till's pictures motivated people to stop racism. I'm not sure how else to explain it.

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  73. I am neither fully pro-life, nor am I pro-choice. For one thing, I don't believe in applying such overly simplistic labels to people, your beliefs cannot be conveniently summarized in four words or less. For another, the issue is is far too complex to take a rigid, black and white stand one way or the other. I believe that in some circumstances, abortion is the best option. I believe that in other situations, abortion is at least morally inexcusable. I therefore support giving women unconditional abortion rights in the following cases: rape, incest, and cases where the woman is risking death by continuing her pregnancy. I do not support "abortions of convenience", i.e. simply aborting the developing child because one or both of it's parents cannot be bothered to at least deal with it until birth and then give it up for adoption. Any other potentially complicated circumstances should be subject to review, by a group of experts (I would suggest doctors, lawyers, sociologists), and they should render a decision on whether or not abortion is appropriate.

    Btw, I am not religious by any means. Even athiests can be against abortion. I am more pro life than pro choice though however.

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  74. I always love anonymous commenters ...

    I am neither fully pro-life, nor am I pro-choice.

    Then you are pro-abortion.

    your beliefs cannot be conveniently summarized in four words or less

    Not sure when this became a criterion for assessing the truth or validity of an argument but, that aside, yes I can. It goes something like this:

    ABORTION IS MORALLY WRONG.

    Look! I did it!

    the issue is is far too complex to take a rigid, black and white stand one way or the other

    No it's not. It is psychologically difficult, no doubt. But that doesn't mean there is no right or wrong answer. Actually it is very simplistic and straightforward. Scientifically, the unborn is a unique, whole, living human being. That's a scientific fact. Philosophically, there is nothing of moral consequence that makes the being you are now any different from the being you were at some earlier stage in your development that would justify killing you then, but not now. Abortion is not complicated.

    I believe that in some circumstances, abortion is the best option. I believe that in other situations, abortion is at least morally inexcusable. I therefore support giving women unconditional abortion rights

    So, you admit that at least in some situations, abortion is morally inexcusable ... but you think woman should be afforded "unconditional rights" to perform morally inexcusable acts. Doesn't sound so "neutral" when you put it that way, does it?

    ... potentially complicated circumstances should be subject to review, by a group of experts (I would suggest doctors, lawyers, sociologists), and they should render a decision on whether or not abortion is appropriate.

    I see ... something like the Nazi medical experimenters then. A group of "experts" who gets to decide who lives and dies. Very nice.

    I am not religious by any means. Even athiests (sic) can be against abortion.

    Correct. You and I agree that anyone can know right and wrong. You don't need a religion or a Bible to know this. That is because every human being is made in the image of God and cannot escape the fact that moral right and wrong are not only written on their hearts, but written into the fabric of the universe. I would NEVER say that anyone had to be religious to know murder, or rape, or stealing ... or abortion ... are wrong.

    I am more pro life than pro choice though however.

    No you're not. Any level of pro-"choice" = pro-abortion ... because there is no gray area between "killing human beings is unacceptable" and "killing human beings is acceptable." You're either one or the other.

    Cheers ...

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  75. Also the bit about giving a group of "experts" having this a subject for review was NOT meant to say that they ENTIRELY get to decide who lives or dies but honestly, considering how many uneducated and stupid people are in the world, whose opinion on life and death are you going to believe more? A young teenager girl and her trailer trash bf that impregnated her? Or a group of educated and the most morally sound we can possibly agree on to be in terms of giving their opinion on who lives or dies? This is sort of like how I am for the death penalty for inexcusable and convicted criminals, and murderers. The decision has to come from SOMEWHERE, by the most educated people we can possibly get. That is what i meant.

    in terms of you saying that abortion is psychologically difficult. Yes it is but at the same time what you said about it makes no difference between a living human being versus an embryo. That is debateable because at a certain point, we have to realize that we are all in the heirarchy of living things. If I was going to save my mother or a small cluster of cells that is NOT sentient and barely developed, I will value the life of my mother more and I think most people will agree with me. People are willing to kill one thing over another when it comes to the level of intelligence (killing a chicken or a dog debate, dolphin versus a mackeral etc). I am not saying just because something is stupid we should kill it but honestly if we use that logic, than people should be able to kill other people as well. The debate goes on and on. What justifies kililng one thing over the other? That is a reason why we have morals and have a subconscious SET in the heirarchy of living beings.

    That is why I think abortion after a certain stage of development should be banned. By your definition, a woman should not even be able to eat a morning after pill because technically that is abortion. It washes away the fertilized egg, up to five days since conception.

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  76. Sorry. I think when I posted this it went terribly messed up so I will post this again. You can delete my other posts if it gets confusing. I had to break this into two parts because it got alot longer than I thought it would.

    hello I am the same anonymous person from above and i would just like to say, thank you for your reply but I think you took what i said completely out of context.

    I think I made myself clear enough but I would just like to say that you are wrong when it comes to this being black and white. It is not.

    There are people in this world who are 100 percent pro life or 100 percent pro choice. Then there are definitely people in this world who are not completely one or the other. That just makes no common sense. Have you ever heard the saying, people are complicated? Not everyone is black and white? Such is this debate.

    A different analogy which I hope you understand is, not everyone is 100 percent a bad person or a 100 percent good person. There are a trillion reasons and factors that shape up a human being and their characteristics. some of the things and choices they believe in may classify them as bad people more so than good but still, they may exhibit some good characteristics as well.

    For example, I know many pro choice people whom i disagree with btw, and to me I think they can be heartless monsters but at the same time I see how they live their life and many of them can be kind and help abandoned and sick animals and children. At that point, it is really hard to say if they are 100 percent BAD or GOOD. I hope you get where I am going with this so yes, some topics are forever controversial in which people can't simply 100 percent be ONE way or the OTHER way.

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  77. Anonymous -- please enlighten me as to the "middle ground" position between saying it is morally wrong to kill innocent human beings and it is not, morally wrong to kill innocent human beings.

    Would it be (as you stated in your earlier comment) that "sometimes it's OK to kill innocent human beings?" Or, as you put it, "morally excusable"?

    I think that's a scary statement, especially when you add to it by allowing some bureaucratic agency to be the decision maker.

    It is not a "cluster of cells," or a "blob of tissue," or a "choice." It is a distinct, whole, living, human being from the moment of conception. That's just a scientific fact. You can choose to ignore that fact if you want to. I don't.

    Saving the life of the mother is another story. In that case, our goal is to protect life (as it should be in every case) and save as many human lives as possible. That the unborn will most likely not survive when removed (say in a ectopic pregnancy), it unfortunate, but that is far different than going in on a seek and destroy mission to intentionally kill it.

    Beyond that, your examples constitute < 7% of abortions, so it's a smoke screen anyway. But since you brought it up, I assume you will agree with me that, since the other 93% of abortions are morally reprehensible, it would be proper to make them illegal.

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  78. Hullo again.

    In response to your post, I have already explained to you what I meant by the middle ground. I said that there are definitely people who are pro life who will excuse and condone abortion if it was in the following extreme circumstances. rape, incest, endanger mother or babys life, severe deformity etc.

    And yes I agree, as much as pro choice people push on the fact that almost all cases of abortion are those cases, they are wrong. It constitutes in total probably less than 8 percent. However, those factors and cases still exist, it would be at least 1 in 20 pregnancy cases.

    Now take those cases and try to think of it this way. What if the woman were exactly in one of those cases...but then its found that the baby in her stomach is already well on its way to being pretty much fully developed. Who should come in to make the decision to abort? Should that decision lie with the mother and mother alone? I disagree with that but where I come from in canada, it is ENTIRELY a womans decision, nobody else has any say.

    In a case like that, 100 percent pro choice people would agree that it is up to the womans choice, 100 percent pro life people may or would say that despite all those reasons, it is not the babys fault so the woman should be forced to deliver even if she was raped and even if she was going to possibly die from it etc. Then the people who are IN BETWEEN (in the middle yes), may lean towards one side more than the other or truly be neutral. Some may say that while they really do not wish for the baby to be aborted, in the end they may lean towards the mothers opinion or vise versa, while others would just be at a loss of what to say. This is why I believe there should be some sort of educated, the most morally sound experts we can possibly have in this world to give their opinion on how to deal with abortion. The fact that this debate exists, even WITHIN their own groups, pro life groups or pro choice groups, clearly shows that there is a spectrum and a hierarchy of this debate and PROVES that this issue is not black and white.

    Many people may feel that it is not morally right to abort, but because they value the life of the mother more, they may still choose that option. That does not mean they think its OK to kill the baby, or that they hated the baby or consider it to not have a right to life, it just meant that to them, they were forced to make a decision on whose life they value MORE. That is all. In a situation where some woman are forced to make the decision to abort her baby in order to save her life, many become anguished but they STILL made the choice to save their own life instead. Are you telling me that the woman is at fault at that point? No. She only made the best choice she possibly could given her situation and it is only human to value their life above all else.

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  79. I've already addressed the issue of the mother's life being at risk. That is the only exception that is defensible.

    Would you defend slavery by making the morality of owning a slave "entirely up to the slaveowner"?

    If you don't think it's morally right to take a defenseless human life, you shouldn't allow it to be taken. It's a pretty simple argument. All your what-ifs and circumstantial conditions are nothing but a smoke screen. I do not disagree that they are emotional, difficult, horrific decisions to make, but the question is, "Do you value human life more than you fear dealing with personal difficulties?"

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Though I do not moderate comments, I reserve the right to delete any comment that I deem inappropriate. You don't have to agree with me, but I don't tolerate abusive or objectionable language of any kind.