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Terryl Givens Weighs in on Ethics of Abortion


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1 hour ago, Meadowchik said:

On the contrary, the United States Constitution is a federal document. Rights flow from it protecting individuals from undue violations by the states.

The state of the law now is that abortion is part of the bundle of rights protected by the US constitution.  The time is approaching where the Supreme Court will hold that abortion regulation should be left to the states.  

I support abortion on demand if a state approves it.  I am not God but I suspect there is little chance of forgiveness. 

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5 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Okay.  So what is the relevance of noting that a fetus "cannot survive outside the mother's womb without considerable intervention"?  It sounded like A) an attempt to deny the personhood of a fetus (because it "cannot survive..."), B) a justification for elective abortion (because the fetus "cannot survive" and is therefore not a person with a right to live), or C) a combination of A and B.

Thanks,

-Smac

The relevance is there in the paragraph that followed it:

1 hour ago, Meadowchik said:

In general, newborns can survive outside their mother's womb for a considerable amount of time, up to several days. This is why in some natural disasters, newborn babies will be discovered alive beneath the rubble. For fetuses, this is not generally the case. Most fetuses at any given moment of time cannot survive outside the mother's womb without considerable intervention. 

The difference that makes is what you are requiring of another human being to keep the helpless human being alive. Do we pull random people off the streets and put another human inside them to keep them alive? Does a woman have to put a newborn inside her body to keep him alive? No. What you're demanding is that one human being be forced to keep another human being inside their body.

 

 

3 minutes ago, smac97 said:

It is also possible for a comatose patient to be transferred from one hospital to another.  

And in any event, the reliance of that patient on the assistance/care of others does not negate the humanity of the patient.

Required, actually.  Not just "expected."

Sure.  

That's actually a fair point.  But you are required to refrain from killing your child.

The state also forces all parents to not kill their children.  Because the child is a person and has rights, even if those rights impose obligations on the parents.

Thanks,

-Smac

Again, I was not arguing for or against personhood. I am saying that there are even limits to what the state can require parents to do, there are limits to what we can require human beings to do for their children or any other human beings.

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9 minutes ago, smac97 said:

The answer is yes, the government can do that.  There are constraints, but the power to do it is there.

Thanks,

-Smac

For example?

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3 minutes ago, Bob Crockett said:

The state of the law now is that abortion is part of the bundle of rights protected by the US constitution.  The time is approaching where the Supreme Court will hold that abortion regulation should be left to the states.  

I support abortion on demand if a state approves it.  I am not God but I suspect there is little chance of forgiveness. 

It sounds like you are predicting decisions of the SCOTUS. We'll see.

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19 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

No, it is a substantial difference in what you are demanding and not at all nonsense.

If any person cannot care for a newborn, it is possible for another person to take over that care. Parents are expected to care for their children, to feed and shelter them. However, there are limits to what is required of them. You are not required by law to donate your blood or your kidney if your child needed it. I would happily donate either for any of my children, but I would not demand that the state forces all parents to do it.

Such bull.  That is not why people get abortions, and you know it.  This is just a bunch of legal BS that sidesteps morality.  Keeping a fetus is natural and is not a medical procedure like donating blood/kidney is.    A mother is not required by law to donate blood because it is a medical procedure...keeping a fetus is NOT a medical procedure.   

If I could make this into a comic strip, I would:

"That mosquito just violated my constitutional rights to privacy!"

 "Huh???"

"I did NOT consent to donate blood!"

:rolleyes:

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30 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

This is not about women's rights because they are female. It is about whether the government can be allowed to force ANY person to help another human being stay alive by keeping them inside their bodies. 

If they can "force" you to keep them alive outside the body, why not inside?  What difference does 1 day make ethically???  1 day they are in, the next day they are out.  

Yes, the government should be allowed to protect NATURAL HUMAN RIGHTS TO LIFE, which are more fundamental than any semantically murky "privacy" rights.

Edited by pogi
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6 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

Again, I was not arguing for or against personhood. I am saying that there are even limits to what the state can require parents to do, there are limits to what we can require human beings to do for their children or any other human beings.

Do you think there is a difference between A) the government compelling a parent to donate a kidney to save the life of her child, and B) the government prohibiting the parent from killing her child?

Thanks,

-Smac

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3 minutes ago, pogi said:

Such bull.  That is not why people get abortions, and you know it.  This is just a bunch of legal BS that sidesteps morality.  Keeping a fetus is natural and is not a medical procedure like donating blood/kidney is.    A mother is not required by law to donate blood because it is a medical procedure...keeping a fetus is NOT a medical procedure.   

If I could make this into a comic strip, I would:

"That mosquito just violated my constitutional rights to privacy!"

 "Huh???"

"I did NOT consent to donate blood!"

:rolleyes:

Hold on. Here you are telling me what I think again. Please do not do that.

2 minutes ago, pogi said:

If they can "force" you to keep them alive outside the body, why not inside.  What difference does 1 day make ethically???  1 day they are in, the next day they are out.  

Yes, the government should be allowed to protect NATURAL HUMAN RIGHTS.

They can only require it to a limited point. You won't be put in prison because you didn't donate your kidney.

I cannot speak for women who have had induced abortions, but I can say that the fact that the tiny human in them requires being able to stay inside them to live is a major part of the situation. 

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46 minutes ago, smac97 said:

What you are doing is denying the personhood of a fetus by characterizing it as something other than a "person."  Your postulation is explicit: "If a collection of cells known as a fetus is simply a growing seed and is not a person..."

I find this quite similar to the arguments advanced in support of slavery, arguments that denied the personhood of black African slaves by characterizing them as something other than "persons" (as "chattel," for example).

Now, nobody is going to come out and actually admit to this correlation.  Sure.  But the correlation is there.  And it's not silly.  You seek to justify elective abortion by denying the humanity of a fetus, the same denial of humanity that slaveholders used to justify their position.  

Its a silly unserious attempted correlation.  

46 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Your point was to deny the personhood of fetuses.  You were quite explicit on that point.

Yes.

Can we call a comatose hospital patient a "person" if they "simply wouldn't survive" without a ventilator?

Why would we do that?  Are you suggesting people who fall into a coma aren't really people?   

46 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Again, my son was born in February.  As of March of that year he was still 100% dependent on others to care for him.  Does this mean he was not a "person" in March?

No.  

46 minutes ago, smac97 said:

I think it's quite apt.  The issue, I think, is that it cuts close to the bone for the pro-abortion crowd.

This is not a one side vs another side thing.  As it is even the Church officially allows women to chose in some circumstances.  

46 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Actually, many fetuses can survive outside the womb.

I think they say at 22 weeks is about the time survival is possible.  So is abortion before that time ok?  

46 minutes ago, smac97 said:

But so what?  A comatose person can't survive on his own either, but that doesn't mean he is not a "person."

You are only proving my point.  Slaveholders thought their chattel property weren't "even people," either.  Except . . . they were.

Thanks,

-Smac

It's a matter of opinion.  You are stuck thinking pre-22 week fetus' really are persons.  I'd suggest they are not.  They are still just a growing set of cells in another person.  As such the ending of the growth is not the big offense it is to you, in my view.  And, as I pointed out previously, if there be a God he seems to agree with me.  

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11 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Do you think there is a difference between A) the government compelling a parent to donate a kidney to save the life of her child, and B) the government prohibiting the parent from killing her child?

Thanks,

-Smac

Exactly.  On top of that, donating a kidney and/or blood is a medical procedure.  Pregnancy is a natural human condition/state.  Big difference.  Protecting a baby's rights in utero is not equivalent to forcing a parent to have a medical procedure against their will to donate a kidney or blood.

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5 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Do you think there is a difference between A) the government compelling a parent to donate a kidney to save the life of her child, and B) the government prohibiting the parent from killing her child?

Thanks,

-Smac

Yes, of course there is. 

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8 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Every constitutional restriction on abortion currently in existence.

Thanks,

-Smac

So it is a circular argument. "Let's do more of what we are already doing because we are already doing some of it."

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14 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

Hold on. Here you are telling me what I think again. Please do not do that.

Ok.  Let me ask you then - do you think people are having abortions because they don't want to donate blood?  Do you think that really crosses their minds in the decision making process?

14 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

They can only require it to a limited point. You won't be put in prison because you didn't donate your kidney.

Being pregnant and donating a kidney are not equivalent.  One is a medical procedure which cannot be forced and ends in losing a healthy organ.  The other is a natural human condition which should be protected. 

Edited by pogi
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2 minutes ago, pogi said:

Exactly.  On top of that, donating a kidney and/or blood is a medical procedure.  Pregnancy is a natural human condition/state.  Big difference.  Protecting a baby's rights in utero is not equivalent to forcing a parent to have a medical procedure against their will to donate a kidney or blood.

As we've already gone over before and agreed upon, pregnancy is a unique human condition with no exact comparison. 

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10 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

As we've already gone over before and agreed upon, pregnancy is a unique human condition with no exact comparison. 

The fact remains, it is a natural human condition and not a forced medical procedure. 

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Just now, pogi said:

Ok.  Do you think people are having abortions because they don't want to donate blood?  Do you think that really crosses their minds in the decision making process?

Being pregnant and donating a kidney are not equivalent.  One is a medical procedure which cannot be forced.  The other is a natural human condition which should be protected. 

People have abortions for many reasons, and the biological toll on their bodies can be an important consideration. And that can have a cascading effect on all other areas of their life. 

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8 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

People have abortions for many reasons, and the biological toll on their bodies can be an important consideration. And that can have a cascading effect on all other areas of their life. 

You didn't answer my question. 

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8 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:
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This is not about women's rights because they are female. It is about whether the government can be allowed to force ANY person to help another human being stay alive by keeping them inside their bodies. 

The answer is yes, the government can do that.  There are constraints, but the power to do it is there.

For example?

Every constitutional restriction on abortion currently in existence.

So it is a circular argument. "Let's do more of what we are already doing because we are already doing some of it."

Not at all.  You asked "whether the government can be allowed to force ANY person to help another human being stay alive by keeping them inside their bodies."  Put another way, can the government place constrains on abortion.  The answer is plainly yes.  That's not an argument, circular or otherwise.  It's just a statement of fact.

Thanks,

-Smac

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Just now, pogi said:

The fact remains, it is a natural human condition and not a forced medical procedure. 

Sure, and spontaneous abortion is a natural human experience as well. And human beings have been choosing medical intervention in the natural processes of their bodies for as long as medicine has existed. If I women decides that she wants to intervene with her body's process of keeping a human being inside her, I believe it is her choice, not yours or mine.

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12 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:
Quote

Do you think there is a difference between A) the government compelling a parent to donate a kidney to save the life of her child, and B) the government prohibiting the parent from killing her child?

Yes, of course there is. 

I agree.  So framing constraints on abortion has being equivalent to the government compelling a parent to donate a kidney seems less than apt.

Thanks,

-Smac

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6 minutes ago, pogi said:

You didn't answer my question. 

I already said that I cannot speak for women who have had abortions, but I did say:

7 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

People have abortions for many reasons, and the biological toll on their bodies can be an important consideration. And that can have a cascading effect on all other areas of their life. 

Donating blood is one kind of medical procedure that cannot compare to what a woman's body provides for her unborn child. If there was some medical procedure that exactly corresponded to it, my answer would be yes. I certainly think that people take into consideration the biological toll events can have on their bodies.

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3 minutes ago, smac97 said:

I agree.  So framing constraints on abortion has being equivalent to the government compelling a parent to donate a kidney seems less than apt.

Thanks,

-Smac

That is because there is no other human experience that exactly corresponds to pregnancy. Hopefully that would give us all pause.

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15 minutes ago, stemelbow said:

Its a silly unserious attempted correlation.  

I think it's quite apt.  

15 minutes ago, stemelbow said:
Quote

Your point was to deny the personhood of fetuses.  You were quite explicit on that point.

Yes.

Can we call a comatose hospital patient a "person" if they "simply wouldn't survive" without a ventilator?

Why would we do that?  Are you suggesting people who fall into a coma aren't really people?   

No.  I'm suggesting they are people, and that they have rights even if they "simply wouldn't survive" without a ventilator.

Similarly, I am proposing that fetuses are people, and that they have rights even if they "simply wouldn't survive" outside the womb.

15 minutes ago, stemelbow said:
Quote

Again, my son was born in February.  As of March of that year he was still 100% dependent on others to care for him.  Does this mean he was not a "person" in March?

No.  

We are in agreement, then. 

So when does personhood attach?  When does it spring into existence?

15 minutes ago, stemelbow said:
Quote

I think it's quite apt.  The issue, I think, is that it cuts close to the bone for the pro-abortion crowd.

This is not a one side vs another side thing. 

I think it is.

15 minutes ago, stemelbow said:

As it is even the Church officially allows women to chose in some circumstances.  

Extremely rare circumstances, yes.

15 minutes ago, stemelbow said:
Quote

Actually, many fetuses can survive outside the womb.

I think they say at 22 weeks is about the time survival is possible.  So is abortion before that time ok?  

I don't think so.  But then, I'm not the one using "survival" as a metric of personhood.  Are you?

15 minutes ago, stemelbow said:
Quote

But so what?  A comatose person can't survive on his own either, but that doesn't mean he is not a "person."

You are only proving my point.  Slaveholders thought their chattel property weren't "even people," either.  Except . . . they were.

It's a matter of opinion. 

In a sense, yes.  My opinion is that slaves were persons, and that it was a great moral and legal wrong to enslave them.

Similarly, my opinion is that fetuses are persons, and that elective abortions are a great moral and legal wrong.

15 minutes ago, stemelbow said:

You are stuck thinking pre-22 week fetus' really are persons. 

I've said nothing about "22 week" anything.

15 minutes ago, stemelbow said:

I'd suggest they are not.  They are still just a growing set of cells in another person. 

Okay.  Could you clarify your reasoning here?  When does the "growing set of cells in another person" become a person in his/her own right?

Thanks,

-Smac

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9 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

Sure, and spontaneous abortion is a natural human experience as well. 

Which is why it is not illegal.

9 minutes ago, Meadowchik said:

And human beings have been choosing medical intervention in the natural processes of their bodies for as long as medicine has existed. If I women decides that she wants to intervene with her body's process of keeping a human being inside her, I believe it is her choice, not yours or mine.

Except the woman's body is not the target of an abortion.   The procedure is largely on another human body, killing it by torture.  If it was just about her body, I would agree.  Even that has legal/ethical limits though. We don't have complete legal medical autonomy over our own bodies.

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