Comments

  1. says

    It’s even more à propos than the cartoonist intended. If the woman gets sick, it gets passed onto and hurts the foetus, something the extremists never think about.

  2. hjhornbeck says

    I don’t think they even care about fetuses.

    If you don’t believe me, ask someone who’s anti-choice what they’d do about ectopic pregnancies. Roughly I% of the time, a blastocyst tries to embed outside the uterus, typically in the fallopian tube but occasionally in the abdominal cavity. It starts automatically drilling into tissue which isn’t intended to be drilled into, which not only leads to malnutrition but even with modern hospital care it frequently results in the death of both mother and infant.

    There’s only one cure, abortion, and not using that cure usually results in the death of two people. To put a number to that, I figure a dozen Canadian women would die every day due to ectopic pregnancies. Faced with this, most anti-choice people concede that the unborn can be killed.

    That creates a bit of a problem: how do you permit something you think should never be premitted?

    One way that Benson’s covered here is to throw up arbitrary boundaries. Say that life must have a heartbeat, refuse to abort anything with a heartbeat, and cover up the corner cases that show how silly that requirement is. Alternatively, invent a moral code called the “principle of double-effect,” selectively apply it, and declare they are justified in saying that ripping the unborn from the mother’s body and letting it slowly die by depriving it of nutrients is not an “abortion” and therefore ethical.

    Another way is.to redefine “abortion” to mean what you want it to mean. I had someone declare that everyone agreed the term “abortion” only referred to medically unneccasry abortions. No amount of counter-examples from medical reports, dictionaries, anti-choice websites, or even their own sentences would cause them to give up the point.

    So truth be told, anti-choice people only care about fetuses sometimes. When that care is not politically expedient,, they’ll permit the unborn to be killed in gruesome ways.

  3. Stevarious, Public Health Problem says

    Oh, and isn’t he just bowing with the maximum of politeness and civility, yes?

    They are always just so damned proper in their vile cruelty.

  4. says

    hjhornbeck@3:

    There’s only one cure, abortion, and not using that cure usually results in the death of two people.

    Can I be a terrible pedant and point out that we ought to be very careful of using language that appears to list a foetus as ‘person’? Because we know how eagerly that will be seized on.

    Okay, pedantry over.

  5. hjhornbeck says

    David Hart @7:

    Can I be a terrible pedant and point out that we ought to be very careful of using language that appears to list a foetus as ‘person’?

    Duly noted, but realize such language is a double-edged sword. Anti-choicers love to use loaded language instead of argument, but that creates problems when your uncompromising position needs to compromise. They talk of the “unborn” and drop all talk of the mother when referring to most abortion, but suddenly obsess over the mother and talk about “hard moral choices” when it comes to ectopics.

    By using their loaded language back at them, we use verbal judo to point out their double-standard. Handy, in some contexts, even if it does endorse the foetus = person meme.

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