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There’s a secular argument for wearing underpants on your head. So?

Sarah Moglia points out that David Silverman has been saying some weird things recently.

Yesterday, an article was published about atheists at CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference). Featured prominently in the article was Dave Silverman, president of American Atheists. In it, Dave was quoted as saying, “I will admit there is a secular argument against abortion. You can’t deny that it’s there, and it’s maybe not as clean cut as school prayer, right to die, and gay marriage.” Is that so?

I’m trying to figure out what this ‘secular argument’ actually is; he didn’t say. I have encountered anti-choice people tabling at an atheist convention, and they couldn’t say either — I got the impression these were actually religious people trying to evangelize to the atheists with a pretense, and they stood out oddly from the rest of the crowd…rather like an atheist shilling at CPAC. So speak up, Dave, tell us what these secular arguments are.

I’m also wary because in my business we’ve run into folks peddling religious bullshit under the guise of being secular before: we call them intelligent design creationists. No one is fooled. Similarly, the anti-choicers who claim to be making a rational secular argument are easy to see through, since they ultimately always rely on some magical perspective on the embryo.

But here’s the bottom line: it is not enough to make a purely secular argument. It has to also be a good argument, unless atheism is to become a smokescreen for nonsense, to be accepted purely because of its godless label. And then atheism might as well just be another religion.

Comments

  1. A. Noyd says

    chris61 (#492)

    yet we don’t run around sanctioning the killing of human beings in comas.

    We do, however, sanction disconnecting them from life support plenty often.

    (#495)

    Second term and later abortions require injections to stop the heart of the fetus before it’s extracted.

    Only if they’re not viable. Removal of a whole, viable fetus via cesarean or induced birth does not require the death of the fetus. The Gosnell case actually proves this.

    Gosnell got in trouble because he was an incompetent abortionist.

    He got in trouble for killing newborn babies. See here:

    Philadelphia abortion provider Kermit Gosnell was convicted Monday of three counts of first-degree murder for the death of three babies that prosecutors said were delivered alive and subsequently killed. [emphasis added]

    Why are you lying, chris? Also, why did you ignore #482?

  2. John Horstman says

    Oh, also especially Athywren deserves thanks. And everyone else, but I wanted to give particular props to those going above and beyond to lay the rhetorical smackdown on the forced-pregnancy brigade.

  3. anteprepro says

    What makes a baby more sentient than a fetus?

    What makes a lizard more sentient than an ant?

  4. chris61 says

    #496 Again we get back to the difference between failing to act and acting. A skin cell can only become an embryo with a lot of scientific intervention. And it doesn’t work for human cells, nor is it likely to. Because the efficiency of the process is so low that you would likely need dozens if not hundreds of surrogates to get one viable fetus. A fetus left where it is, where it belongs at that stage of human development, has a high probability of developing into a child, teenager and eventually an adult.

    #498 No I wouldn’t force a woman who was the victim of rape to continue a pregnancy. As far as I know in states where surrogacy is legal surrogates have the same rights to and constraints on abortion as biological mothers carrying their own pregnancies do.

    #499 No I don’t consider an egg or sperm to be a human being because I am as capable as arbitrary definitions as you or anyone else is. My reasoning would be that the probability of any individual egg or sperm (and especially sperm) to become a neonate is vanishingly small and requires an act of commission.

  5. says

    No I wouldn’t force a woman who was the victim of rape to continue a pregnancy.

    Good thing to know you allow for justifiable baby murder

  6. Valde says

    #496 Again we get back to the difference between failing to act and acting. A skin cell can only become an embryo with a lot of scientific intervention.

    And a zygote can only become a human being with the blood, sweat and tears of a human being. A prenate takes an enormous amount of resources from a woman’s body. If a zygote has potential and needs help to fulfill it, so does that skin cell. Basically, just about everything that has a potential to take place also has a barrier preventing that potential from being fulfilled right now. The existence of barriers in no way affect the fundamental fact regarding the existence of a potential. For a specific example, consider the a long staircase, with an christ61 at the top. The potential exists for that person to fall down the stairs and break the neck. It doesn’t matter if there is a nothing but the physical sense-of-balance between the person and the potential, or a railing, or a gate, or even ten locked gates, between the person and the potential –the potential still exists, and can be fulfilled if the barriers are overcome.

    No I wouldn’t force a woman who was the victim of rape to continue a pregnancy.

    Why not? What about that ‘special relationship’ that you keep talking about. Does it not apply here?

  7. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    No I don’t consider an egg or sperm to be a human being because I am as capable as arbitrary definitions as you or anyone else is. My reasoning would be that the probability of any individual egg or sperm (and especially sperm) to become a neonate is vanishingly small and requires an act of commission.

    In other words, you are trolling for the sake of trolling, and have no evidential argument to bring to bear on the subject, and your misogynistic position is dismissed without evidence….

    Either woman are full human beings with full bodily autonomy, or you ARE a misogynist fuckwit ignoring the woman…..

  8. anteprepro says

    A fetus left where it is, where it belongs at that stage of human development, has a high probability of developing into a child, teenager and eventually an adult.

    I notice that the mother is conspicuously absent from your equation. If fetuses develop into adults so naturally, what’s pregnancy for? Just let the fetus be all fetus-y all on its lonesome, rugged American individualist that it is, and it will just pull itself up by its fetal bootstraps and become an adult, without any handouts from anybody. Because that’s how life works, right?

  9. Valde says

    I like how chris pretends that those refutations that destroy his arguments do not exist.

  10. chris61 says

    #508 Which is why I said a fetus LEFT WHERE IT IS, WHERE IT BELONGS AT THAT STAGE OF HUMAN DEVELOPMENT.

    #506 I wouldn’t expect a woman who was the victim of rape to continue a pregnancy if she chose not to because the ‘special relationship’ between a woman and her fetus includes the conditions under which the pregnancy occurred.

  11. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I like how chris pretends that those refutations that destroy his arguments do not exist.

    Chris, are women fully human with bodily integrity, which is a human right?
    If not, show that the alleged humanity of the fetus is greater than than of the woman with solid physical evidence–like a live birth certificate.
    Otherwise, you show yourself with prima facie evidence to be a misogynist fuckwit….

  12. Valde says

    #506 I wouldn’t expect a woman who was the victim of rape to continue a pregnancy if she chose not to because the ‘special relationship’ between a woman and her fetus includes the conditions under which the pregnancy occurred.

    So what makes a rape baby less valuable than a wanted baby? Can a rape victim kill her rape baby once it’s born since that ‘special relationship’ does not exist due to the method of conception? After all, you consider a zygote to have the exact same moral value as a born baby, right?

  13. chris61 says

    #506 Raising a child also requires an enormous amount of work and yet we don’t allow parents to kill their children up to the point they become legal adults. My point is that choosing ‘birth’ as an arbitrary point at which to confer a ‘right to life’ is just that, arbitrary, and choosing some other point in time doesn’t require religious reasoning.

  14. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    My point is that choosing ‘birth’ as an arbitrary point at which to confer a ‘right to life’ is just that, arbitrary, and choosing some other point in time doesn’t require religious reasoning.

    You fail misogynist bigot, as in requiring birth, you deny the full humanity of the woman. What a mother fucking lying shitweasel you are….

  15. says

    No I don’t consider an egg or sperm to be a human being because I am as capable as arbitrary definitions as you or anyone else is. My reasoning would be that the probability of any individual egg or sperm (and especially sperm) to become a neonate is vanishingly small and requires an act of commission.

    “Arbitrary.” Uhuh. You’re arguing that women should be forced to give up their autonomy based on an arbitrary definition of when “potential” should be considered. and it hasn’t occurred to you that, maybe, you should put a little more self-examination into such basic things as whether your position is anything more than gut-feeling about the poor wee “potential” babby’s right to “potential” existence. It’s nice to know you’re willing to give women’s autonomy up on the grounds of such slim reasoning…

  16. chris61 says

    #512 No Valde I don’t consider a zygote has the exact same moral value as a born baby. I’m actually okay with Roe v. Wade and the idea that as a pregnancy progresses the state has an interest that at some point outweighs the interest of the mother.

  17. Valde says

    My point is that choosing ‘birth’ as an arbitrary point at which to confer a ‘right to life’ is just that, arbitrary, and choosing some other point in time doesn’t require religious reasoning.

    I am not choosing birth. Nice strawman. I am only talking about legal abortion, as it is. But then again, people such as yourself have to talk about killing viable feti and toddlers in order to make your point. Why is that? Why can’t you talk about a zygote and give it the exact same moral weight as a toddler? Is a zygote not as valuable a person as a toddler?

    #506 Raising a child also requires an enormous amount of work and yet we don’t allow parents to kill their children up to the point they become legal adults.

    Raising a child is completely different from having something living inside you that actively harms you in order to sustain it’s own life. The prenate dampens the woman’s immune system, raises her blood pressure, takes sugar and iron from her blood (which can lead to anemia and diabetes) and basically tortures her in order to be born. All of the above are things that people actually get treated for, because none of the above is healthy.

    Last I checked, born children do not do any of the above. Furthermore, talking about born children is completely irrelevant, because abortion only exists due to the nature of pregnancy. Pregnancy, which may come as a shock to you, is completely different from raising a teenager.

  18. chris61 says

    #515 I just don’t buy the whole woman’s autonomy argument. As I said a woman’s relationship to her fetus is unique so I don’t see how one can argue a woman should have bodily autonomy from a fetus because men do. You’re arguing that a woman’s body autonomy outweighs the right of a fetus to be born. It’s as arbitrary an argument as the converse.

  19. anteprepro says

    #508 Which is why I said a fetus LEFT WHERE IT IS, WHERE IT BELONGS AT THAT STAGE OF HUMAN DEVELOPMENT.

    Which is a very peculiar phrasing of “allowed to continue leeching nutrients off of the woman that it is inside of until it is grown enough to be birthed”. But yes, you obviously weren’t disappearing the pregnant mother out of the picture at all! My mistake entirely! Assclown.

  20. Valde says

    As I said a woman’s relationship to her fetus is unique so I don’t see how one can argue a woman should have bodily autonomy from a fetus because men do.

    Saying it’s unique isn’t a justification. It is just discrimination based on location. Also, this reasoning, as I pointed out earlier, should forbid abortion in the case of rape (since, according to you, life outweighs bodily autonomy, and said relationship is unique).

    You’re arguing that a woman’s body autonomy outweighs the right of a fetus to be born.

    The right to life does not include the right to use another person’s body as life support. If it did, as a general principle, we would force a lot more people to donate blood/organs/tissue to preserve life. Again,, you are engaging in special pleading on behalf of the fetus. Don’t do that. Also, the right to life does not include the right to assault another human being – and pregnancy, though natural, is an assault on the woman’s body. And birth – 6-72 hours of painful contractions, and something the size of a bowling ball being shoved out of your nether regions is, in fact, a form of torture. If someone was to shove a bowling ball up your ass, that would be torture. So, why isn’t it torture if a fetus does it? Because ‘nature?’ Because ‘special pleading for fetus’?

    Again, if you are a scientist, I am not very impressed.

  21. says

    You’re arguing that a woman’s body autonomy outweighs the right of a fetus to be born. It’s as arbitrary an argument as the converse.

    Observe an average woman. She is self-aware, conscious, and has desires, plans, a character. She is a person.

    Observe this fetus: It is, at the very most, only vaguely self-aware. It has no character. It has no desires, no dreams for the future. It is not a person, any more than a blank sheet of paper is War And Peace.

    Damn right I think the rights of the former trump any which you might wish to extend to the latter.

  22. chris61 says

    #517 The vast majority of women are not harmed by pregnancy. 100% of fetuses are killed by abortion. Besides I have no problem with contraception. Although if we’re going to argue potential harm, full term pregnancy, especially at a relatively early age, appears to reduce a woman’s chances of developing breast cancer.

  23. anteprepro says

    I just don’t buy the whole woman’s autonomy argument….You’re arguing that a woman’s body autonomy outweighs the right of a fetus to be born. It’s as arbitrary an argument as the converse.

    Well “right to born” is a nonsensical concept, so I think bodily autonomy wins! But thanks for letting us know that you are not interested in the idea of women having control over their own bodies. Very nice of you to warn us. You can fuck off now. Kthnxbai.

  24. Rex Little, Giant Douchweasel says

    Observe this fetus: It is, at the very most, only vaguely self-aware. It has no character. It has no desires, no dreams for the future. It is not a person, any more than a blank sheet of paper is War And Peace.

    Daz, that’s irrelevant. I think Athywren @141 put it best:

    Even if we do grant that a foetus is fully human with a full suite of human rights, even if we grant that it’s conscious and sentient and likes to play the drums on the weekends, until the ability to use another person as life support against their will becomes a human right, then a foetus doesn’t have the right to use a woman’s body without her consent.

  25. Valde says

    #517 The vast majority of women are not harmed by pregnancy. 100% of fetuses are killed by abortion. Besides I have no problem with contraception. Although if we’re going to argue potential harm, full term pregnancy, especially at a relatively early age, appears to reduce a woman’s chances of developing breast cancer.

    Since you didn’t read the thread…allow me to re-paste this for your lazy, ignorant self:

    Pregnancy and health:

    “That means each year in the U.S., about 700 women die of pregnancy-related complications and 52,000 experience emergencies such as acute renal failure, shock, respiratory
    distress, aneurysms and heart surgery. An additional 34,000 barely avoid death.”

    Data modeling suggesting 21/100,000 US maternal mortality rate

    In 2004/2005, 1.7 million women per year suffered adverse health effects

    http://search.worldbank.org/data?qterm=us%20maternal%20mortality%20rate&language=EN

    http://www.amnestyusa.org/our-work/campaigns/demand-dignity/maternal-health-is-a-human-right/maternal-health-in-the-us

    http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/metro/why-are-so-many-u-s-women-dying-during-childbirth/article_dd916b4b-38f0-5bae-ba42-ddee636e4cf4.html

    http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2010/dec/10/torn-apart-by-childbirth

    http://ca.news.yahoo.com/blogs/daily-buzz/opera-singer-suing-hospital-episiotomy-left-her-severe-162302400.html

    Normal, frequent or expectable temporary side effects of pregnancy:

    exhaustion (weariness common from first weeks)
    altered appetite and senses of taste and smell
    nausea and vomiting (50% of women, first trimester)
    heartburn and indigestion
    constipation
    weight gain
    dizziness and light-headedness
    bloating, swelling, fluid retention
    hemmorhoids
    abdominal cramps
    yeast infections
    congested, bloody nose
    acne and mild skin disorders
    skin discoloration (chloasma, face and abdomen)
    mild to severe backache and strain
    increased headaches
    difficulty sleeping, and discomfort while sleeping
    increased urination and incontinence
    bleeding gums
    pica
    breast pain and discharge
    swelling of joints, leg cramps, joint pain
    difficulty sitting, standing in later pregnancy
    inability to take regular medications
    shortness of breath
    higher blood pressure
    hair loss
    tendency to anemia
    curtailment of ability to participate in some sports and activities
    infection including from serious and potentially fatal disease
    (pregnant women are immune suppressed compared with non-pregnant women, and are more susceptible to fungal and certain other diseases)
    extreme pain on delivery
    hormonal mood changes, including normal post-partum depression
    continued post-partum exhaustion and recovery period (exacerbated if a c-section — major surgery — is required, sometimes taking up to a full year to fully recover)

    Normal, expectable, or frequent PERMANENT side effects of pregnancy:

    stretch marks (worse in younger women)
    loose skin
    permanent weight gain or redistribution
    abdominal and vaginal muscle weakness
    pelvic floor disorder (occurring in as many as 35% of middle-aged former child-bearers and 50% of elderly former child-bearers, associated with urinary and rectal incontinence, discomfort and reduced quality of life — aka prolapsed utuerus, the malady sometimes badly fixed by the transvaginal mesh)
    changes to breasts
    varicose veins
    scarring from episiotomy or c-section
    other permanent aesthetic changes to the body (all of these are downplayed by women, because the culture values youth and beauty)
    increased proclivity for hemmorhoids
    loss of dental and bone calcium (cavities and osteoporosis)
    higher lifetime risk of developing Altzheimer’s
    newer research indicates microchimeric cells, other bi-directional exchanges of DNA, chromosomes, and other bodily material between fetus and mother (including with “unrelated” gestational surrogates)

    Occasional complications and side effects:

    complications of episiotomy
    spousal/partner abuse
    hyperemesis gravidarum
    temporary and permanent injury to back
    severe scarring requiring later surgery
    (especially after additional pregnancies)
    dropped (prolapsed) uterus (especially after additional pregnancies, and other pelvic floor weaknesses — 11% of women, including cystocele, rectocele, and enterocele)
    pre-eclampsia (edema and hypertension, the most common complication of pregnancy, associated with eclampsia, and affecting 7 – 10% of pregnancies)
    eclampsia (convulsions, coma during pregnancy or labor, high risk of death)
    gestational diabetes
    placenta previa
    anemia (which can be life-threatening)
    thrombocytopenic purpura
    severe cramping
    embolism (blood clots)
    medical disability requiring full bed rest (frequently ordered during part of many pregnancies varying from days to months for health of either mother or baby)
    diastasis recti, also torn abdominal muscles
    mitral valve stenosis (most common cardiac complication)
    serious infection and disease (e.g. increased risk of tuberculosis)
    hormonal imbalance
    ectopic pregnancy (risk of death)
    broken bones (ribcage, “tail bone”)
    hemorrhage and
    numerous other complications of delivery
    refractory gastroesophageal reflux disease
    aggravation of pre-pregnancy diseases and conditions (e.g. epilepsy is present in .5% of pregnant women, and the pregnancy alters drug metabolism and treatment prospects all the while it increases the number and frequency of seizures)
    severe post-partum depression and psychosis
    research now indicates a possible link between ovarian cancer and female fertility treatments, including “egg harvesting” from infertile women and donors
    research also now indicates correlations between lower breast cancer survival rates and proximity in time to onset of cancer of last pregnancy
    research also indicates a correlation between having six or more pregnancies and a risk of coronary and cardiovascular disease

    Less common (but serious) complications:

    peripartum cardiomyopathy
    cardiopulmonary arrest
    magnesium toxicity
    severe hypoxemia/acidosis
    massive embolism
    increased intracranial pressure, brainstem infarction
    molar pregnancy, gestational trophoblastic disease
    (like a pregnancy-induced cancer)
    malignant arrhythmia
    circulatory collapse
    placental abruption
    obstetric fistula

    More permanent side effects:

    future infertility
    permanent disability
    death.

    ———-

    1) Pregnancy is not a state of wellness

    2) Birth itself harms the woman

    3) Many of the side effects can take decades to show (why do you think so many women are incontinent in old age)

    4) A pregnancy can go wrong at any time. The woman can suddenly start bleeding from every orifice and die. A post partum hemorrhage can come out of nowhere and kill her – PPH being the #1 killer of pregnant women worldwide. 300k women die worldwide from pregnancy per year. 20 million are permanently injured. One of the top killers of women of reproductive age is in fact pregnancy.

    5) Pregnancy has non-zero risk, and only the person taking that risk should decide how much risk they are going to expose themeslves to. Considering the risk, and the pain involved, pregnancy should be completely voluntary, and busybodies such as yourself do not have the right to tell uterus owners how much harm and pain they should put up with .

  26. chris61 says

    #521 If one were pitting the life of the woman against the life of the fetus I agree with you, the life of the woman trumps the life of the fetus for all the reasons you mention plus of course that if the woman dies the fetus will most likely die as well. But in most cases that is not what we’re talking about – we’re talking about potential harm to the woman against certain death for the fetus and that’s the part I think a lot of people, including me, have trouble with.

  27. Valde says

    But in most cases that is not what we’re talking about – we’re talking about potential harm to the woman against certain death for the fetus and that’s the part I think a lot of people, including me, have trouble with.

    My right to live does not include the right to harm you. So, why does a fetus’ right to live include the right to harm a woman? And, it would appear that you are in fact saying that a *potential* person has the right to harm an actual person. Need I remind you, an actual person can’t harm an actual person in order to preserve their life.

    So why the special pleading for feti? And why does that fetus suddenly lose it’s right to life based on method of conception? You still have not adequately explained this.

    Oh, and special pleading:

    Special pleading is a formal logical fallacy where a participant demands special considerations for a particular premise of theirs. Usually this is because in order for their argument to work, they need to provide some way to get out of a logical inconsistency — in a lot of cases, this will be the fact that their argument contradicts past arguments or actions. Therefore, they introduce a “special case” or an exception to their rules.

    While this is acceptable in genuine special cases, it becomes a formal fallacy when a person doesn’t adequately justify why the case is special.

    ——
    You have failed to adequately justify why a fetus should get special consideration – consideration that you would grant to no other human on this earth. You have stated, repeatedly, that the right to life overrides the right to 1) bodily autonomy 2) not to be harmed. Yet you will ONLY apply this to pregnancy, and not in cases of rape.

    So, clearly, you do NOT believe that the right to life overrides the right to not be harmed/bodily autonomy, otherwise, you would not make a special special case for prenates created through consensual sex.

    I would suggest, before you post further, that you think your argument through, because you are embarrassing yourself.

  28. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    the idea that as a pregnancy progresses the state has an interest that at some point outweighs the interest of the mother.

    Which never happens misogynic shitweasel, until the fetus is born, at which point abortion is moot. Acknowledge women are full human beings with bodily integrity as a human right (articles 3 and 4), or shut the fuck up as liar and bullshitter.l

  29. chris61 says

    #525 Actually I did read that. 21/100,000 women (or ~150/100,000 if you consider serious morbidity as well as mortality) versus 100,000/100,000 fetuses.

  30. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Typical of anti-choice misogyinist fuckwitted weasels….(sorry about that weasels).

  31. chris61 says

    #528 I said I agree with it but it’s not my argument, it’s the argument of several US Supreme Courts based presumably on their interpretation of the US Constitution and its various amendments. Read Roe v Wade and some of the subsequent decisions as well.

  32. says

    Rex Little #524

    Aye, I agree. Still an’ all, this hypothetical fully-aware tiny person doesn’t exist, so the two arguments are functionally equivalent. The right to autonomy of the mother trumps any rights the foetus might be extended.

    chris61 #526

    we’re talking about potential harm to the woman against certain death for the fetus and that’s the part I think a lot of people, including me, have trouble with.

    You’re talking of potential harm to the woman. I’m talking of her right as a human being to bodily autonomy. And another person, either in potentia or the drum-playing superfoetus mentioned above, does not have the right to demand, or have it demanded on their behalf, that she give that right up.

    And yeah, if we add in potential harm to the woman, we have even less justification to force her into such a situation.

  33. carlie says

    because the ‘special relationship’ between a woman and her fetus includes the conditions under which the pregnancy occurred.

    And there you go. Behind almost every “but the fetus is a sacred special HUMAN” argument is the real belief: if she opens her legs she’s asking for it and deserves what she gets. Anyone who makes a rape exception is saying that.

  34. Valde says

    Chris believes in potential. He believes in the potential ability for a zygote to become a person.

    However, Chris discards his belief in the power of ‘potential’ when it comes to the risks and harm that pregnancy can cause.

    Again, more special pleading on behalf of the prenate. Special pleading that chris61 has utterly failed to justify. And no, ‘unique relationship’ is not an argument, sorry.

  35. anteprepro says

    The vast majority of women are not harmed by pregnancy.

    Ignoring things as obvious as, you know, fucking childbirth itself (stats for U.S.):

    Postpartum depression: 5 to 25%
    PTSD from childbirth: 5.9%
    Miscarriages: 11 to 22% (related: ectopic pregnancies and early pregnancy hemorrhages)
    Maternal mortality in the U.S: 24 per 100,000 live births
    Stillbirths: 1 in 160
    Pre-eclampsis: 6-8%
    Post-partum hemorrhage: 13%

    Pregnancy worsens lupus, thyroid disease, and diabetes.

    Also, high risk for anemia.

    And that’s just the shit that I can easily find via Googling.

    Pregnancy is not fucking magic. It is not a simple and easy process. It is not a smooth ride along a rainbow, to a land of sunshine and candy canes. And either you are laughably ignorant of that fact, or you are an absolute piece of shit, dismissing the harm that pregnancy and childbirth actually causes.

  36. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Read Roe v Wade and some of the subsequent decisions as well.

    Read the UN Declaration of Human Rights. Not one mention of your imaginary person, the fetus. But it does mention things, like bodily autonomy and anti-slavery, which is not the anti-choice misogynist fuckwits considerations….

  37. says

    I wouldn’t expect a woman who was the victim of rape to continue a pregnancy if she chose not to because the ‘special relationship’ between a woman and her fetus includes the conditions under which the pregnancy occurred.

    So the “unborn baby” should undergo (by your reasoning) a death sentence for the crime of rape which it didn’t commit?

    Either this thing is a human being with rights—which include the right not to be held accountable for others’ crimes—or it is not. Make your mind up.

  38. chris61 says

    #530 What kind of answer do you want? Do I think women should have the choice and the means with which to prevent conception or to end pre-viable pregnancies? In fact I do. Not because of a woman’s body autonomy but because I think legal abortion is good for society, in part because making abortion illegal discriminates against the poor since the rich can always transport themselves to some location where abortion is legal. Do I think women should have the choice to abort a fetus at any time during pregnancy, no I don’t. As best as I can tell the majority of Americans take this position.

  39. Valde says

    @anteprepro

    Your post was most def not irrelevant. I added the stats you provided to my handy list of pregnancy risks. So ty for that.

  40. Valde says

    Not because of a woman’s body autonomy but because I think legal abortion is good for society, in part because making abortion illegal discriminates against the poor since the rich can always transport themselves to some location where abortion is legal.

    Why should bodily autonomy be a thing that is denied to women, specifically, if they engage in consensual sex?

  41. Rex Little, Giant Douchweasel says

    Oh, and Chris: if the fetus’ survival needs trump the mother’s right to her own body, does a kidney patient’s need for a transplant trump your right not to have him cut you open and take yours? I’ll be sure to keep that in mind should the need arise; mine aren’t in the greatest of shape.

  42. anteprepro says

    Valde: Thanks. And I guess it is really two different messages: Mine were a few of the most common problems and how many women they affect, yours was the massive list of possible problems! They both paint a very similar picture, in different ways. Either way you slice it, pregnancy is nothing to scoff at and take lightly.

  43. anteprepro says

    Not because of a woman’s body autonomy but because I think legal abortion is good for society, in part because making abortion illegal discriminates against the poor since the rich can always transport themselves to some location where abortion is legal.

    ….abortion should be legal….because rich people will just go get abortions elsewhere….and because that isn’t fair….

    I don’t think you have a very coherent moral framework, chris.

  44. chris61 says

    #534 No I don’t think any woman ‘deserves’ an unwanted pregnancy anymore than I think any child deserves to be born in a situation where he or she isn’t wanted but I think a lot of people would be a lot less conflicted if abortions were something less than 20% of live births. I support contraception and I support making it freely available.

    #538 Acknowledging a fetus has rights doesn’t have to mean a woman doesn’t, just that perhaps the rights of one have to be weighed against the rights of the other. In any case it’s not so much the fetus’s rights but society’s rights.

    #537 Did a quick search of the UN Declaration of human rights. You’re absolutely right – not one mention of fetuses. But neither is there a mention of abortion as a human right probably because slavery requires intent.

  45. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    @540 chris

    That is one of the more inane statements I’ve ever seen here. How does it benefit society to legalize a thing just because a percentage of the population has the means to travel someplace where it’s not illegal? By that logic, if there was a place where murder was legal, you’d have to legalize murder in the US lest you discriminate against poor people since rich people can just bring their desired victim to that hypothetical place.

  46. anteprepro says

    I think a lot of people would be a lot less conflicted if abortions were something less than 20% of live births.

    Ahahahaha, bullshit . Even if only three women a year were doing it, there would people like you sticking your noses in their business, disingenuously handwringing about “weighing” the rights of the fetus, and saying that you would finally butt out if we could bring it down to two per year.

    Fuck. Your. Bullshit.

  47. Valde says

    #538 Acknowledging a fetus has rights doesn’t have to mean a woman doesn’t, just that perhaps the rights of one have to be weighed against the rights of the other. In any case it’s not so much the fetus’s rights but society’s rights.

    No, you are saying that a fetus’ right to harm, and possibly kill, a woman, outweigh her right to bodily autonomy. And that this principle, of the right to life overriding bodily autononomy, is only conveniently applicable in cases where a slut spread her legs!

    Do tell us more about ‘society’s ‘ rights? The right to treat women as a mere means to an end? That end being the creation of more taxpayers/soldiers and consumers?

  48. says

    In any case it’s not so much the fetus’s rights but society’s rights.

    Huh? I don’t even know what you mean by this. It seems you’re saying that society’s rights to something or other are actually more important than any the foetus may have. I don’t see how you could be meaning that though; it’s certainly not a position I’d take, regardless of how many or few rights I extended to the foetus.

  49. anteprepro says

    I don’t think chris really believes in much of anything aside some from obstructionist handwaving. He’d make a great Republican useful idiot some day.

  50. chris61 says

    #547 And if there were an artificial uterus in place then abortion could be made illegal and everyone would be happy. Real world arguments for real world problems.

    #545 I don’t think the legality of abortion should be a moral issue although the morality of killing fetuses is certainly a large part of what makes people ambivalent about it.

    #543 I know I’ve said this before but acts of commission (deliberately aborting a fetus) versus acts of omission (not signing an organ donor card) are generally not considered morally equivalent.

    #542 Women are allowed body autonomy in the same way that men are. Pregnancy is a special circumstance that men don’t undergo. There is no equivalent.

    #527 (Sorry I missed this previously). Your right to live does not give you the right to deliberately harm me. A fetus is incapable of conscious decision.

  51. anteprepro says

    Chris thinks that abortion is okay in case of rape, and that abortion is a right of society because otherwise we lose out on the lucrative abortion market!

    ….but thinks that a fetus is a human being and that bodily autonomy isn’t a thing, and that pregnancy complications don’t matter.

    All signs point to “misogyny”.

  52. Valde says

    #543 I know I’ve said this before but acts of commission (deliberately aborting a fetus) versus acts of omission (not signing an organ donor card) are generally not considered morally equivalent.

    Again, ignoring the general principle that you keep espousing – if the right to life overrides the right to bodily autonomy, then it will NOT just apply to pregnancy. Furthermore, simply ‘letting someone die’ is NOT an ethically superior position. And furthermore, the prenate dies because it can no longer use the woman’s body as life suppport – it can’t use her lungs for oxygen, and her kidneys to process it’s waste.

    #542 Women are allowed body autonomy in the same way that men are. Pregnancy is a special circumstance that men don’t undergo. There is no equivalent.

    More special pleading. The fact that there is no equivalent does not in fact bolster your position. It works against it. Saying ‘pregnancy is unique, therefore, women must risk life and limb’ is NOT an argument. I am still waiting for you to make a proper argument, kiddo. What you are in effect saying, is that women must be subservient to biology. That in fact, in ONLY this one case, should humans be utterly subservient to biology.

    #527 (Sorry I missed this previously). Your right to live does not give you the right to deliberately harm me. A fetus is incapable of conscious decision.

    So? Intent is immaterial. The fact that you are being harmed is all that matters. The fact that your body is being violated is the ONLY thing that counts here. A bacteria doesn’t ‘intend’ to harm you – yet you are within your rights to take antibiotics to preserve your health. A sleepwalking person also lacks intent – by your logic, you can’t kill a sleepwalker if ze is harming you, because ze lacks intent.

  53. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    @chris61

    What color is the sky on your planet?

    Also, #542: Trans men would beg to differ.

  54. Valde says

    I actually find it more difficult to ‘debate’ people like Chris vs. someone who is actually schooled in anti-abortion arguments, because Chris doesn’t have a fucking clue what he is going on about.

  55. says

    I know I’ve said this before but acts of commission (deliberately aborting a fetus) versus acts of omission (not signing an organ donor card) are generally not considered morally equivalent.

    These two acts surely aren’t morally equivalent. The first is a choice to have control over one’s living body, the second is a selfish desire to deny needful people access to a lump of meat you will no longer have any use for.

  56. anteprepro says

    Real world arguments for real world problems.

    No, utter insincerity. If you really believed the shit you spew, you’d put restrictions on what rich people can do abroad, not make killing precious pre-born proto-adults legal just because the Koch family can afford a trip to a clinic in a Canadia.

    I don’t think the legality of abortion should be a moral issue although the morality of killing fetuses is certainly a large part of what makes people ambivalent about it.

    Like I said: utterly insincere. If you really thought it was as immoral as you are pretending, you wouldn’t want it legal. But you don’t believe the shit you are spewing, so it doesn’t matter.

    I know I’ve said this before but acts of commission (deliberately aborting a fetus) versus acts of omission (not signing an organ donor card) are generally not considered morally equivalent.

    That doesn’t address the actual comment. Because it wasn’t about abortion: it was about forced birth.

    Also: gotta love the irony of someone saying that “acts of omission” are not as morally serious, considering how concerned you are with whether or not the woman deliberately had sex when she got pregnant. Again, you don’t believe the shit you are spewing. Which is disgusting to us, because we actually care about the world, and other people.

    Your right to live does not give you the right to deliberately harm me. A fetus is incapable of conscious decision.

    “Your right to live does not give you the right to harm me”? Well most rights end where other people’s rights begin. It’s not clear that that is true for right to live. But, then again, I doubt even you think it is true, and you are just throwing shit against the wall and seeing what sticks. I don’t expect that this one will.

    Speaking of which, admit that you were embarrassingly wrong about Gosnell yet? I noticed you may have skipped over that comment at 501. I know, I know: you were too busy being wrong about sooo many other things, that it just slipped your mind.

  57. chris61 says

    #556 I said abortion being legal was good for society (not a right) because illegal abortion discriminates against the poor. I said a fetus is a human being and that bodily autonomy as applied to pregnancy wasn’t a valid argument in my opinion. Pregnancy complications matter but should potential pregnancy complications outweigh the death of the fetus.

    #554 Chris has two X chromosomes and the accompanying hormones and secondary sexual characteristics so whatever beliefs are involved are HER beliefs.

    #555 This is an opinion that abolishing abortion would violate the 13th Amendment. You agree with the argument because you like the conclusion. Pro-lifers have their own opinion writers and they agree with the arguments of those opinion writers because they like their conclusions.

  58. A. Noyd says

    chris61 (#510)

    the ‘special relationship’ between a woman and her fetus includes the conditions under which the pregnancy occurred.

    Like others have noted, it sounds like you’re trying to sneak in, without justifying it, the idea that consenting to sex means a woman consents to pregnancy. Why should anyone have to consider sex and childbearing coupled in a world where you can conceive without sex and abort a pregnancy?

    (#513)

    yet we don’t allow parents to kill their children up to the point they become legal adults.

    Because outside the womb, anyone else can sustain the life of the child. That’s not arbitrary. (And how does your own contention about pregnancy being “unique” not apply here? You’re contradicting yourself.)

    (#518)

    As I said a woman’s relationship to her fetus is unique so I don’t see how one can argue a woman should have bodily autonomy from a fetus because men do.

    Why does it even matter that it’s “unique”? You keep making all these value claims without backing them up. You’re begging the fucking question all over the place. Shouldn’t the uniqueness of the arrangement mean that the pregnant woman gets a greater say in what happens to that fetus than the state or anyone else?

    What you’re actually saying is that you want someone to step into that relationship if the woman makes a choice you disapprove of. You’re saying that this unique relationship between a woman and her fetus necessarily includes other people. You’re saying that I could not decide that the morally superior outcome for my potential offspring is for it to die before it becomes aware of its own life.

    (#522)

    100% of fetuses are killed by abortion.

    100% of everything ever conceived dies at some point. The aborted fetus, however, gets to die without experiencing suffering. As death is inevitable either way, abortion actually prevents the greater harm. Like I asked before, why are we not asking people to justify the act of bringing mortals capable of suffering into a world that will hurt and kill them? Why do we instead ask people to justify ending life before it can suffer or be aware of its own doom?

    (#553)

    Real world arguments for real world problems.

    Speaking of which, why did you lie about late term abortions and Gosnell?

  59. anteprepro says

    I said abortion being legal was good for society (not a right) because illegal abortion discriminates against the poor. I said a fetus is a human being and that bodily autonomy as applied to pregnancy wasn’t a valid argument in my opinion. Pregnancy complications matter but should potential pregnancy complications outweigh the death of the fetus.

    “A fetus is human being whose livelihood trumps a woman’s right to her own body, and trumps any harm that might arise due to pregnancy. But you better believe that we should still abort them if other countries are still doing it!”

    Disingenuous to the fucking core. Do you even understand how you are coming off? Do you realize how blatant it is that you are just arguing out of both sides of your mouth?

  60. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I said a fetus is a human being and that bodily autonomy as applied to pregnancy wasn’t a valid argument in my opinion.

    Three lies here fuckwitted misogynist. One, that we give a shit about your unevidenced OPINION. It is dismissed without evidence. Second, there is no second full human being present, unless it is the woman. Third, you ignore bodily autonmy, a human right. What a fuckwitter loser you are. Shut the fuck up. You add nothing cogent to the discussion.

  61. Valde says

    I said a fetus is a human being and that bodily autonomy as applied to pregnancy wasn’t a valid argument in my opinion. Pregnancy complications matter but should potential pregnancy complications outweigh the death of the fetus.

    Then why is bodily autonomy a valid argument in the case of rape, sweetie? And if a prenate is a human being, why the rape exception at all?

    And no, you don’t think pregnancy complications matter one whit, otherwise, you wouldn’t keep saying that the right to not be harmed is overriden by the prenates right to life.

    We do not force people to risk their health and their lives to save another. You have still failed to justify as to why this principle does not apply to pregnancy. Saying the relationship is unique is NOT a justification. The very fact that the ONLY way a woman can preserve her health is to remove the prenate, which results in its death, bolsters the PC position, not yours. If someone is actively assaulting you, and you have very good reason to know that they will torture you (birth), and the ONLY way you can escape is by using deadly force, then you have the right to kill to preserve your health and life. I will be blunt here: if you were on a boat with someone, out in the middle of the ocean, and you knew with 100% certainty that they were going to shove a bowling ball up your rectum, and the ONLY way you could escape was to push them off the boat, into the water, ending their lives, you would be within your rights to do so. Because the right to life does not include the right to hurt another human being.

    You agree with the argument because you like the conclusion.

    Forcing someone to labour on behalf of another is slavery, kiddo. At the very least, it is indentured servitude. Pregnancy is not all unicorns and faeries, as has been repeatedly explained to you.

  62. chris61 says

    #563 How did I lie about Godnell? He was an incompetent abortionist but the service he was providing and desperate women paid him for in spite of the horrendous conditions of his clinic was late term abortion. None of them reported him for murdering babies, did they? What separates what he was doing and what a legal late term abortion would have involved is that the latter would have included a step to kill the fetus before allowing it to be born.

    Yes it’s true that everyone dies at some point but if you’re going to argue that we should kill people to prevent suffering then presumably you would agree with killing victims of accidents who are going to suffer before eventual recovery or those of us who’ve had surgery for one reason or another and gone through painful recoveries.

  63. A. Noyd says

    Valde (#549)

    Do tell us more about ‘society’s ‘ rights? The right to treat women as a mere means to an end?

    Not just the means to any old end, but an end that might be in direct opposition to the moral beliefs of the woman being used. Yet we allow people in many places to opt out of participating in activities they morally oppose but that do not constitute a risk to themselves. (And is it really a coincidence that the most obvious example is refusal to sell contraception?)

    (#567)

    The very fact that the ONLY way a woman can preserve her health is to remove the prenate, which results in its death, bolsters the PC position, not yours.

    Perfect.

  64. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    What separates what he was doing and what a legal late term abortion wo

    Fuckwit, there isn’t such a thing as an elective late term abortion. Look at reality, not your idea of reality. Late term abortions are due to fetal deformity, fetal death, or necessary to save the life of the woman you don’t give a shit about. Prove otherwise with solid and conclusive evidence. Your mere OPINION is dismissed as misogynist fuckwittrery.

  65. says

    What separates what he was doing and what a legal late term abortion would have involved is that the latter would have included a step to kill the fetus before allowing it to be born.

    I’m only aware of this happening in cases of medical need. Are you claiming that the foetus is routinely killed in all late-term abortions? If so, citation very much needed.

  66. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Oh, and Chris the misogynists fuckwit, late term abortions also include early birth….

  67. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    It’s almost as if chris61 is trying to communicate with us.

    @chris61 568

    if you’re going to argue that we should kill people to prevent suffering

    Point me to where someone argued that.

  68. Valde says

    What separates what he was doing and what a legal late term abortion would have involved is that the latter would have included a step to kill the fetus before allowing it to be born.

    Canada does not have an abortion law. There is no limit on how late a fetus can be aborted. But you know what? Women don’t get abortions in Canada past 24 weeks unless life/health is at risk. Because, here’s the thing, women aren’t so stupid that they will purposely gestate a fetus to 30+ weeks, and then suddenly decide they need an abortion because they can’t fit into their bikini. And in Canada, abortion is taxpayer funded – which is why we have no Gosnells – because low income women don’t have to spend months scraping together the money for the abortion.

    The reason women went to Gosnell is because they were poor and it took months to save up the money. They went to Gosnell because pro-life protestors outside the other clinics scared the shit out of them. They were so fucking desperate that they submitted to the butcher Gosnell. You’re a fucking moron if you really really believe that women will just CASUALLY go for what is a very dangerous late term abortion.

    Yes it’s true that everyone dies at some point but if you’re going to argue that we should kill people to prevent suffering

    A prenate isn’t a person. Bringing a child into the world, under certain circumstances, can cause great suffering. This is why people use contraception. Precisely BECAUSE they do not want to bring more people into the world. As long as the prenate is incapable of sentience, it ain’t a person – just a mindless body. And there is nothing immoral about killing a mindless animal organism, specifically if it is infringing on your rights.

  69. chris61 says

    #567 Valde No ‘sweetie’ I didn’t say that the right not to be harmed is overridden by a fetus’s right to life. I said that I agree that it is reasonable to put some limits on abortion based on gestational age (i.e. Roe v Wade). I also said that I think making contraception more freely available and encouraging its proper use could reduce the number of abortions and leave everyone happier. Forcing someone to labor on behalf of another is slavery when it involves autonomous human beings but whether pregnancy which involves no intent whatsoever on the part of the fetus is slavery is a matter of opinion. As far as forcing people to risk their lives to save another you are forcing a fetus to die to save potential harm to the mother. I understand that if you don’t believe a fetus is a human being then that argument carries no weight but not everyone feels that way and feeling that way does not require a belief in religion.

  70. Valde says

    Forcing someone to labor on behalf of another is slavery when it involves autonomous human beings but whether pregnancy which involves no intent whatsoever on the part of the fetus is slavery is a matter of opinion

    If the state forces women to remain pregnant, the state is forcing women to labour on behalf of the fetus. Illegal abortion = forced gestation and birth.

    As far as forcing people to risk their lives to save another you are forcing a fetus to die to save potential harm to the mother.

    The right to life does not include the right to violate another person’s body, harm that person, and torture them. A prenate is not *unjustly* killed in an abortion. Women, believe it or not, have the right to self-defense.

    I said that I agree that it is reasonable to put some limits on abortion based on gestational age (i.e. Roe v Wade).

    No one here is arguing that women should be dismembering feti Gosnell style post-viability. Whey do you insist on arguing a strawman????

  71. Valde says

    And chris, you still have to explain to everyone why a prenate loses the right to life based on method of conception (rape)

  72. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Chris, why can’t you acknowledge a woman is a full human being with full human rights, including bodily integrity? WHY?

  73. Valde says

    #579

    “”Its correct plural is “fetuses”, not “feti”, as Latin fētus is fourth declension and its Latin plural is fētūs.””

    I hang out with people who use’ feti’ and ‘fetii’:P

  74. anteprepro says

    The proper spelling is fetti. Hence we have a word “with multiple tiny pre-born children”, the term “confetti”.

    (Alternate spelling: feta)

  75. Rey Fox says

    I’m actually okay with Roe v. Wade and the idea that as a pregnancy progresses the state has an interest that at some point outweighs the interest of the mother.

    I just don’t buy the whole woman’s autonomy argument.

    Yeah, you pretty much suck.

    and that’s the part I think a lot of people, including me, have trouble with.

    So don’t get an abortion. That’s the beauty of pro-choice.

  76. chris61 says

    #577 Valde The state is not forcing a woman to remain pregnant, the state is refusing to grant access to legal abortion after a certain gestational age and in most states also refusing to allow the use of public funds to pay for abortion. As a society I think we mostly agree that the right to take action when feeling threatened is not absolute. Otherwise there would have been no hue and cry over Zimmerman’s acquittal for killing Trayvon Martin.

    #580 Nerd. Pregnancy as I’ve noted several times only affects women but men don’t have the absolute right to bodily integrity either – ie. physician assisted suicide which I note is illegal for all sexes and genders in most states.

  77. Rey Fox says

    The state is not forcing a woman to remain pregnant, the state is refusing to grant access to legal abortion after a certain gestational age

    I’ll just leave that there.

  78. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    @585 chris61

    “The state isn’t forcing a woman to remain pregnant, they’re just refusing to grant access to [the means to not be pregnant anymore]…” Do you even read this shit before hitting submit?

  79. Valde says

    The state is not forcing a woman to remain pregnant, the state is refusing to grant access to legal abortion after a certain gestational age and in most states also refusing to allow the use of public funds to pay for abortion. As a society I think we mostly agree that the right to take action when feeling threatened is not absolute.

    I am not talking about abortion post-viability and never have been. So kindly STFU about that.

    And if abortion is illegal, (which makes it a crime), then yes, women are forced to act as gestational slaves. When the only other alternative is to attempt a risky self-induced abortion which could result in their death, it sure as hell is forced birth.

    The right to self-defense is not absolute, no. But neither is the right to life. However, as I keep telling you, if you are being assaulted, and have good reason to fear that you are going to be tortured (labour and birth) , and the ONLY way to escape will result in the death of your attacker, then yes, you are completely within your rights to use deadly force to preserve your own health.

    And as I keep explaining to you, we don’t routinely force people to risk life and limb to save others. We don’t. Any idea why?

  80. Amphiox says

    The state is not forcing a woman to remain pregnant, the state is refusing to grant access to legal abortion after a certain gestational age.

    The state is not prohibiting the ownership of firearms. The state is merely refusing to grant access to legal possession of firearms of a certain type.

    The state is not forcing a dissident to remain silent. The state is merely refusing to grant access to legal expression of a subset of the dissident’s views.

    The state is not subjecting the citizen to house arrest. The state is merely refusing to grant access to legal travel beyond a certain geographic area.

  81. Amphiox says

    As a society I think we mostly agree that the right to take action when feeling threatened is not absolute. Otherwise there would have been no hue and cry over Zimmerman’s acquittal for killing Trayvon Martin.

    If Martin had ACTUALLY threatened Zimmerman’s wellbeing to the same extent that a pregnancy could threaten a woman’s well-being, there would have been no hue or outcry over his acquittal. The hue and outcry was because Martin had NOT actually threatened Zimmerman at all.

  82. Amphiox says

    If the state forces women to remain pregnant, the state is forcing women to labour on behalf of the fetus.

    In truth the state is forcing women to labour on behalf of the state, rather than the fetus. Since the fetus has not asked anyone or anything to labour on its behalf.

    It is the state that, with its coercive powers, arbitrarily assigns value to the fetus, and the state, with its coercive powers, that compels women to labor for the value that the state, with its coercive powers, so arbitrarily assigned.

    It is indeed slavery through and through. The state enslaving women so that they will produce a resource the state wants, regardless of what the women or the fetuses actually want.

  83. Rex Little, Giant Douchweasel says

    Chris @585:

    As a society I think we mostly agree that the right to take action when feeling threatened is not absolute.

    Around here we mostly agree that the right to decide who lives inside your body and who doesn’t *is* absolute, whether or not you feel threatened.

  84. chigau (違う) says

    We have Zimmerman/Martin as part of a discussion about abortion?
    Really?
    Seriously?
    chris61
    Fuck off.

  85. A. Noyd says

    chris61 (#568)

    How did I lie about Godnell?

    You said, “It’s also why late term abortions require killing the fetus before extracting from the uterus and why Kermit Gosnell got himself into so much trouble.” What got him in trouble is not that he failed to kill the fetuses, it’s that he delivered them live and then killed them. The important act is that he killed them outside the womb (which, incidentally, contradicts the first half of your claim). There are three options here: 1) kill the fetus inside the womb, 2) kill the baby after it’s born, 3) leave the baby alive after it’s born. Gosnell got in trouble because he chose 2 and not 1 or 3. You’re lying because you’re saying Gosnell had only options 1 and 2.

    if you’re going to argue that we should kill people to prevent suffering

    I’m not arguing that. I’m pointing out you lack justification for your contention that forcing a fetus to be born is superior to killing it. My questions, which are meant to provoke you into supplying an argument, are pretty damn straight forward: Why are we not asking people to justify the act of bringing mortals capable of suffering into a world that will hurt and kill them? Why do we instead ask people to justify ending life before it can suffer or be aware of its own doom?

    I’m asking you to explain, rather than assume, why anyone should assign greater moral good to the option that guarantees suffering when an option exists that guarantees a lack of suffering. You cannot refer to death because death happens in either case.

    Also, are you going to address the other things I brought up in #563? (That you’re implying sex=consent to pregnancy without justifying it, your inconsistent use of the premise of “uniqueness,” why “uniqueness” should matter in the first place, how you’re inserting extra people into a relationship you characterize as being between mother and fetus, and why you lied not just about Gosnell but also about how late term abortions work.)

    (#576)

    As far as forcing people to risk their lives to save another you are forcing a fetus to die to save potential harm to the mother.

    This right here is why you need to justify forcing the fetus to be born and live. You want to remove a woman’s bodily autonomy on the assumption that the morally superior option is forced life. That it’s so morally superior we should restrict other rights to make sure it happens. I disagree.

  86. says

    yeah, pulling out Gosnell as an argument FOR abortion restrictions is vile. Considering the desperation of the patients, it’s rather obvious that what should happen is fewer restrictions (see also: Canada and its complete lack of Gosnell’s)

    As a society I think we mostly agree that the right to take action when feeling threatened is not absolute. Otherwise there would have been no hue and cry over Zimmerman’s acquittal for killing Trayvon Martin.

    again:
    unavoidable bodily harm (because all pregnancies harm pregnant people; it’s just that some lucky and well-cared for pregnant people only get temporarily harmed and end up with minimal permanent damage) is not the same thing as being a racist threatened by the existence of black people.
    having a being inside your body against your will is not the same thing as being a racist threatened by the existence of black people.
    pregnant people are not “feeling threatened”; they’re having their bodies occupied, used, and harmed.

  87. A. Noyd says

    anteprepro (#583)

    (Alternate spelling: feta)

    Remind me never to eat cheese at your place.

  88. says

    As far as forcing people to risk their lives to save another you are forcing a fetus to die to save potential harm to the mother.

    because using another person’s body is not anyone’s right. killing in defense of one’s own body on the other hand is (and don’t give me that shit about a “unique” relationship. that’s by definition special pleading)

  89. says

    if you’re going to argue that we should kill people to prevent suffering

    I am in fact arguing that it is acceptable to kill another when that other is causing you suffering by violating your body and making them stop might result in the violator dying. and I don’t care at all whether the violator is doing that “on purpose” or not.

  90. Koshka says

    #522

    The vast majority of women are not harmed by pregnancy

    Have you spoken to many pregnant women? Of the approximately 50 women I know well enough to talk about their pregnancies, all of them have been harmed by their pregnancy. Some significantly so.

    Although if we’re going to argue potential harm, full term pregnancy, especially at a relatively early age, appears to reduce a woman’s chances of developing breast cancer.

    You are suggesting women get pregnant at an early age to reduce chance of breast cancer? That is the stupidest thing I have read all week.

    The state is not forcing a woman to remain pregnant, the state is refusing to grant access to legal abortion after a certain gestational age …

    Sorry – that is the stupidest thing I have read all week.

  91. says

    The state is not forcing a woman to remain pregnant, the state is refusing to grant access to legal abortion after a certain gestational age

    This phrase belongs in the dictionary, as an exemplary instance of the phrase lying through one’s teeth…

  92. Amphiox says

    The vast majority of women are not harmed by pregnancy

    Every woman is harmed by pregnancy. Many recover from most, but not all, of the harm. Some do not.

    If I take a baseball bat and break your arm, a month to a year later, with a little rudimentary medical care, and you might be fully healed with an arm that is almost as functional as it was before being broken.

    Does that mean that you were not harmed by having your arm broken?

  93. says

    chris61 @516:

    “I’m actually okay with Roe v. Wade and the idea that as a pregnancy progresses the state has an interest that at some point outweighs the interest of the mother.

    You’ve just said that you’re ok with women possessing full bodily autonomy, but at some point during pregnancy, other people* have the right to impose their will on the woman, thus trumping her bodily autonomy and denying her her humanity.

    What is so damned special about a fetus that you would deny women their right to bodily autonomy?

    * ‘The State’ is made up of people, no?

  94. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Ok, I’m only up to comment #551, and it just dawned on me that chris61 doesn’t understand the concept and significance of the right to bodily autonomy.

    There are many things chris61 doesn’t understand, apparently including the fact that words mean things.

  95. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    chris

    The state is not forcing a woman to remain pregnant, the state is refusing to grant access to legal abortion after a certain gestational age

    I don’t think you actually realize this, but you just argued for Gasnells and coat-hanger abortions and women throwing themselves down the stairs in the desperate hope they will abort.

  96. says

    chris61 @576:

    #567 Valde No ‘sweetie’ I didn’t say that the right not to be harmed is overridden by a fetus’s right to life. I said that I agree that it is reasonable to put some limits on abortion based on gestational age (i.e. Roe v Wade).

    You really haven’t given this much thought.
    Your second sentence is the same thing as saying at some point during a woman’s pregnancy, the fetus gains rights that override her right to bodily autonomy.

    As I’ve already noted, I don’t think you understand the concept of bodily autonomy, nor its importance.

    Bodily integrity is the inviolability of the physical body and emphasises the importance of personal autonomy and the self-determination of human beings over their own bodies. It considers the violation of bodily integrity as an unethical infringement, intrusive, and possibly criminal.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bodily_integrity

    The right to bodily autonomy/bodily integrity/right to self-determination *includes* a woman’s right to full control over her body.
    The right to bodily autonomy does not mean:
    Women possess the right to full control over their bodies, except at some point during their pregnancy
    It means:
    Women possess the right to full control over their bodies-with no exceptions.

    I think you’re also unclear about what abortion means:

    Abortion is the termination of pregnancy by the removal or expulsion from the uterus of a fetus or embryo before viability.[note 1] An abortion can occur spontaneously, in which case it is often called a miscarriage, or it can be purposely induced. The term abortion most commonly refers to the induced abortion of a human pregnancy.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abortion

    Please note that this definition does not include the words 100% of fetuses are killed by abortion (your own words @522).

    Going back to your #576, you believe that at some point during gestation, it is reasonable to put limits on abortion. It is at this point that-while you’re not saying it in as many words-you feel that other people can impose their will upon a pregnant woman.
    At this magical, super special moment during gestation, the pregnant woman will no longer have the right to make decisions about her body.
    She will no longer have the right of bodily autonomy.
    She will have less rights than men.
    She will lose full equality.
    The needs of her fetus will override her wishes.

    In effect, she becomes a walking incubator.

    ****

    Valde:
    Seconding what carlie said about you upthread. I think you’ve made some awesome contributions to this thread (as have many others).

    ****

    Rex Little:
    There have been times you’ve said things I strongly disagree with and I’ve criticized you for it. This isn’t one of those times. I’ve read the things you’ve said in this thread, and I want to thank you.

  97. says

    chris61 @585:

    Pregnancy as I’ve noted several times only affects women but men don’t have the absolute right to bodily integrity either – ie. physician assisted suicide which I note is illegal for all sexes and genders in most states.

    I don’t think you want to go there. You probably won’t like the response.

    Oh fuck it-physician assisted suicide should be legalized as well. It falls under bodily autonomy.

  98. says

    but men don’t have the absolute right to bodily integrity either – ie. physician assisted suicide which I note is illegal for all sexes and genders in most states.

    So…outside of physician assisted suicide, what are the restrictions on male bodily autonomy? I’d like a list please.

  99. says

    ::waves at Inaji and realizes that #611 is a much better way to point out the flaw in chris61′s “argument” (that bodily autonomy is not absolute so it is acceptable to infringe on a pregnant woman’s autonomy by imposing the will of others on to her)::

  100. says

    So to step away for a moment from once again debating whether people who can get pregnant are entitled to full human rights, I’m gonna rant a bit about this “there is a secular argument against abortion” thing.
    Generally, when someone says something like “well, she’s got a point” or “well, there is an argument against that”, they tend not to mean “someone strung words together in an attempt to convince you”; phrasing it like that, without a modifier, tends to mean sensible argument/point that needs to be seriously taken into account. That’s why “he’s got a point; it’s a stupid point, but it’s a point” is considered humor (stale humor, but still): it fucks with common expectations of what the phrase means.

    Of course, I’m sure there’s folks who use it really just to note that someone at some point tried to convince others of their standpoint (that would be the “there’s an argument for the existence of lizard people” definition). If all we knew about Silverman’s comments at CPAC was that one line, “I will admit there is a secular argument against abortion”, then we could have the inane conversation over whether he meant it the former way or the latter way. But that’s not all he said and we know the context of that sentence. The context is that a secular argument exists, that abortion is a gray area, and that it’s not like e.g. gay marriage.

    This is where I point out that by the latter definition, you can’t make that claim sensibly. Because people have defended anti-gay-marriage stances without using religion explicitly, just as much as they’ve defended anti-abortion stances; in both cases the defense is utter bullshit, but if one counts as an argument, then so does the other.

    IOW, Silverman said (whether he meant it, who knows) that there’s a difference between the natural law “arguments” against gay marriage, and the precious babeeez “arguments” against abortion; he gives the latter more credit, because they make abortion a gray area, whereas the former somehow don’t make gay marriage a gray area.

    So again: whatever Silverman wanted to say, what he communicated is that abortion is not like the social conservative hobby horses which he wants the Republican party to separate itself from.

    “I will admit there is a secular argument against abortion. You can’t deny that it’s there, and it’s maybe not as clean cut as school prayer, right to die, and gay marriage.”

  101. says

    but men don’t have the absolute right to bodily integrity either – ie. physician assisted suicide which I note is illegal for all sexes and genders in most states.

    the point aside that it damn well should be legal, if a right is curtailed in one way for everyone, but in another way only for one group of people, the outcome is still more rights restrictions for that one group. IOW, that group is still treated as less entitled to their rights and is in effect less free and suffers from inequality.

  102. says

    Jadehawk:

    IOW, Silverman said (whether he meant it, who knows) that there’s a difference between the natural law “arguments” against gay marriage, and the precious babeeez “arguments” against abortion; he gives the latter more credit, because they make abortion a gray area, whereas the former somehow don’t make gay marriage a gray area.

    (bolding mine)
    It’s fucking sad, scary, and horrible how they’ve made abortion a gray area. By appealing to ‘natural law’, ickiness, personhood, or arguments from emotion, anti-choicers have controlled the public discourse for too fucking long. They’ve made it all about the fetuses, rather than womens’ rights.

  103. rq says

    Once again to all those rocking this thread for bodily autonomy. Comment #500 pretty much says it all for me, too. (Seriously, some of you are amazing – the reg’lars who hopefully know by now (well there’s carlie and SallyStrange and Jadehawk and Daz and anteprepro and Amphiox and A. Noyd and Nerd and Rex and Rey and Seven of Mine and Inaji and chigau and sorry if I missed anyone… and a special mention goes to Valde, you are excellent – please stick around!)

    Pregnancy is hard. Babies don’t just walk out of the birth canal (what a way to erase women from the picture – it ain’t called labour for nothing!). Harm is done to my body (at all stages, at various levels) as well as my mind. There is a large amount of risk, with no guarantee of a live baby at the end.
    I am glad there are people who insist that it is my risk to take, and mine only. Thank you.

  104. jefrir says

    By that age the embryo has a heart, it has limbs, it has eyes and a primitive neural system. The internal organs have started to develop.

    So does an ant, or a cockroach. Are you also against pest control?

    Do I think women should have the choice and the means with which to prevent conception or to end pre-viable pregnancies? In fact I do.

    So why was the above quote talking about fetuses at 7-12 weeks, who are definitely not viable?

  105. maddog1129 says

    I’m just wondering, granting that there is an absolute right of a pregnant person to decide they don’t want to be pregnant any more, what is the standard of medical practice in fulfilling the patient’s wishes?

  106. kalirren says

    Giliell@446, rowanvt@447:

    …wait, I’m sorry, I don’t actually understand the structure of these arguments against fetal personhood. It was offered twice, too, so I dare conclude that I’m missing something. Can one of you two spell out for me how not identifying with your past self kills the idea, without also killing the idea of considering yourself a person before you had your first experience that you remember?

    Sure, I’m not the same person I was before, and I’m also not the same person I will be. People change. And past some certain point in development which we call “majority”, and legally fix at 18 years here in the US, we hold people accountable for how they express their views, and how they manage themselves and their obligations, etc., in exchange for recognizing the rights that we think of as appurtenant to personhood. That’s where the concept of personhood comes from.

    That said, people changing neither absolves from duties nor abridges rights. If it did, not identifying yourself as being the same person as you currently are would be a defense to every crime – “you’re charging me now for a crime I committed in the past, but I’m a different person now.” – and that’s absurd. Children are still persons, albeit with a restricted set of both rights and obligations because they’re young and suck at things. Is a mature baby, delivered by c-section but with its umbilical cord not yet cut, not a person until that cut is made? Because while that’s true, it’s still sedated, right? The sedation is administered through the connection between the placenta and the fetal bloodstream?

    I think that that baby is a person. I can think of no reason why that baby is meaningfully different from the fetus while it’s still inside the mother in terms of a personhood claim, and this seems to me to be true all the way back until the first sign of autonomous activity that doesn’t require specialized equipment to measure, which is quickening by definition. That’s why I offered that demarcation, despite its imprecision. Valde, @ 450 you raised that this autonomous activity is not the result of brain activity, but I don’t see why that should matter for a personhood claim. It’s not the mother’s brainstem that’s creating those impulses, it’s the fetus’s.

    For goodness’ sake, since Santa Clara Railroad, brain activity has not been a requirement for legal personhood in the US. Neither has being alive been, for that matter. A fetus beats a corporation out on both of those counts – “potential” is better than “categorically never.” (And to anticipate the objection that it’s absurd to compare the status of fetal and corporate personhood under the law and argue that fetuses should be persons if corporations are, it’s just as valid to argue that uterus donations shouldn’t be required if bone marrow donations aren’t. Both are statements relying on the current state of law in the US.)

    LyleX@451:

    Seems to me that this is a situation that requires the ongoing consent of the woman. If at any point she withdraws consent, that’s it. I don’t see how the initial decision to have the child revokes her rights.

    You’re right, that does solve everything. Sometimes I just need to be hit over the head with a blunt object, I guess. Thank you, and thank goodness. I don’t know why I didn’t think of that, and got hung up on consent at a single point in time. A doctrine of a fetal person’s right to life being contingent upon the mother’s continuing consent, rather than initial consent, protects the mother’s autonomy all the way up to viability despite fetal personhood, and so a sensible moral and legal framework for abortion is independent of fetal personhood. That’s the conclusion I -wanted- to reach. Yay!

  107. maddog1129 says

    @Valde, #588

    And if abortion is illegal, (which makes it a crime),

    I think that’s the intent and effect of some anti abortion legislation, but not necessarily or always

  108. says

    Wow! You guys have been busy.

    @Jadehawk #613
    That was part of what I was trying to get at earlier. Pretending that Silverman hasn’t really thrown women’s rights under the bus is disingenuous. He might not have been driving the bus, but he sure gave them a good push into the street.

  109. carlie says

    I’m just wondering, granting that there is an absolute right of a pregnant person to decide they don’t want to be pregnant any more, what is the standard of medical practice in fulfilling the patient’s wishes?

    The actual practice, depending on the state, is to:
    -give her a lecture about how it’s a baby
    -get some literature about how it’s a baby
    -force her to get an ultrasound tube shoved up her vagina and make her listen to a description of the embryo/look at a picture/hear a heartbeat (varies depending on the state and the humanity of the doctor)
    -leave and wait up to three days to come back for the procedure just to be sure she won’t change her flighty little mind

    Ideal practice? To figure out how to get it out with the least damage to the woman in question, adapted for the situation. Before maximum viability, that means abortion following whatever method the doctor deems most appropriate. Post viability, that depends on the reason. The only times it’s ever happened is due to severe medical necessity, that either that the woman is dying or the fetus is, so whether or not that results in a live birth depends entirely on the circumstances and how urgent it is to get it out right now and how that has to happen. If you’re talking about that hypothetical 8.5 month fetus and a woman who suddenly just decides she doesn’t want to be pregnant any more? Sure, live birth, but induced right then and in the method the woman desires.

    People (I’m not saying you, but many others in this thread) get it backwards – the goal of abortion isn’t fetal death, it’s to not remain pregnant any longer than you want to.

  110. says

    chris 61

    Also failure to donate an organ is an act of omission, abortion is an act of commission and human beings, for whatever reason, generally have more problem with the latter than the former.

    You know, that’s the laziest argument ever for several reasons.
    1. “For whatever reasons” does not mean “good reasons” For whatever reasons we have more problems with eating dogs than pigs. For whatever reasons we have more problems with eating locusts than shrimp. For whatever reasons people like Linking Park.
    2. From the perspective of the affected organism, it doesn’t matter shit. Dead is dead. Indeed, the suffering of an actual person who’s dying while waiting for an organ, or indeed bone-marrow is much bigger than that of any fetus ever aborted.
    3. Quite a lot of countries hold people responsible for things they don’t do. In Germany you have to provide first aid if you can do so safely. And unless you’re a medical rpofessional who should be competent in the procedure you may not be prosecuted for the harm you actively inflict on that person.
    4. It may never have occured to you, but women are not senseless vessels who don’t notice pragnancy. It’s also not just happening inside of their bodies, but they have to actively sustain that pregnancy 24/7. And then there’s also the little problem of getting the critters out of that somehow diconnected from the woman’s body. I know, I know, I’m only a woman, so you’re totally excused if you dismiss my opinion as “anectodata”, but there’s nothing passive about birth.
    5. Do you think I’m justified in removing a nest of mice from my flat? Or am I only justified in not feeding them?

    I wouldn’t expect a woman who was the victim of rape to continue a pregnancy if she chose not to because the ‘special relationship’ between a woman and her fetus includes the conditions under which the pregnancy occurred.

    How can there be a special relationship between a woman and an embryo due to something that happened when the embryo did not exist at all?

    Raising a child also requires an enormous amount of work and yet we don’t allow parents to kill their children up to the point they become legal adults.

    Are you that stupid or do you only act as if you were?
    Money =/= body
    Work =/= body
    We also, in case it has escaped your notice, allow parents to give up their children. Because there’s that very minor detail that after birth anybody can provide for a baby.

    The vast majority of women are not harmed by pregnancy.

    You’re either very ignorant or a liar.
    Every woman’s body is in worse conditions after a pregnancy than before. All pregnant women are at risk of death. Without medical intervention, 1% of women die in childbirth. Even if modern medicine can prevent her from dying, that is definitively harm. 30% of babies are born via c-section which is in the overwhelming majority done for the benefit of the baby. Birth harms. You cannot seriously argue that horrible excrciating pain is not a form of “harm”. Ever heard of vaginal tears? Fistulas? Pregnancy depletes the maternal organism of nutirents so they are at a great risk of losing teeth and of suffering from ostheoporosis. Pregnancy often triggers auto immune diseases, something you cannot even predict before it actually happens.
    Yes, 100% of pregnant women are harmed. The harm increases the longer the pregnancy exists.
    But since you don’t grasp this concept:
    How much pain, harm and damage does a woman have to endure for the sake of the fetus

    No I don’t think any woman ‘deserves’ an unwanted pregnancy anymore than I think any child deserves to be born in a situation where he or she isn’t wanted but I think a lot of people would be a lot less conflicted if abortions were something less than 20% of live births.

    That’s basically the same as saying a lot of people wouldn’t oppose gay marriage if gay men stopped having so much butt sex. Why on earth should the life-changing decision for a woman take somebody else’s fawning over statistics into consideration?
    Oh, you know what is way more than 20% live births? Miscarriage. Clearly, pregnancy is ineffective and we should ban it.

    But neither is there a mention of abortion as a human right

    The UN HAVE declared abortion access a human rights issue. At this point there’s no doubt that you’re living under a rock, the question is what planet that rock is on.

    Women are allowed body autonomy in the same way that men are. Pregnancy is a special circumstance that men don’t undergo. There is no equivalent.

    That’ 25 words and you manage to contradict yourself in them. Either women have the same bodily autonomy men have or they have a special one due to pregnancy. Let’s go with 3/5th of the bodily autonomy men have.

    ’ I didn’t say that the right not to be harmed is overridden by a fetus’s right to life.

    So, what’s your argument?

    kalirren
    I’m not sure what your argument is.
    I think we agree that we are not our past selves. And as we go back in time, the consciousness gets less and less until we arrive at an unfeeling clump of cells. The properties of a person emerge gradually, but that is why birth is the only sensible and clear line we have. Again, nobody’s talking about babies, whether their cord has been cut or not. Outside of the body, capable of being alive without using somebody else’s body= cool stuff.

  111. opposablethumbs says

    I just want to second what rq said in #616. I am eternally grateful that you all are here and demolishing the anti-choice “arguments” with logic, statistics, compassion and a passionate love of justice.
    .
    My two kids are alive because I positively chose to have them; and they are only alive because where I live abortion is free and relatively readily accessible. Because if I had not been able to have an abortion on the two occasions when I had unwanted pregnancies earlier in my life (note to the idiots: even the most reliable methods of contraception – such as the IUD – are not 100% reliable. You can handwave and dismiss “just a few percent” all you like; that “few percent” happens to include actual human beings, of whom I am one) then there’s no way I would have been actively seeking to get pregnant later, and have the two kids I do have. DaughterSpawn and SonSpawn owe their lives to my having had good access to abortion.
    .
    And yes (well said, rq), it’s my risk to take and mine only. And that applies to every pregnant woman ever, under all circumstances and at all times.

  112. says

    The commission vs. omission bit is also not actually as clear as you might think. E.g. if a woman takes a drug that causes her body to cut off blood supply to the placenta, is that commission (because she took a drug) or omission (because the effect is to not supply blood to the fetus)?

  113. opposablethumbs says

    Minor parenthesis to kalirren @ 620: I think we have two separate issues here – one, the fact that as with all biological processes there are no dividing lines but a continuum; the other, the fact that when framing laws, of necessity we invent and impose artificial dividing lines (such as the age of 18 for legal majority, when of course one 17-year-old can be more mature than another 19-year-old). So our need and best course of action is to decide what legal framing gives the best approximation for the purposes of maximising well-being and justice, which in this case would be recognising and protecting the right to bodily autonomy for all (i.e. women too).

  114. opposablethumbs says

    PS and of course, the obvious place to draw a legal dividing line in this instance is birth – when the foetus ceases to use the woman’s body. Since what this is all about is the woman’s bodily autonomy and her right to defend herself against her body being used.

  115. A. Noyd says

    kalirren (#620)

    If it did, not identifying yourself as being the same person as you currently are would be a defense to every crime – “you’re charging me now for a crime I committed in the past, but I’m a different person now.”

    Well, that goes to what the goal is in prosecuting crime and the morality of carrying out that goal. Is the goal retribution or is it restoration? There are huge problems with retributive justice given that people are not the same person throughout their lives. We shouldn’t take it for granted that it’s appropriate, for instance, to punish the 40 year old self for something the 20 year old self did. Far better to base justice around the safety of and benefit to society.

    We can decide that in return for certain privileges, everyone has social obligations that involve respect for the rights and privileges of others and contribution of a reasonable proportion of their money or time to the maintentance of the society that sustains us all. A criminal offender has failed in those obligations such that, for the time being, we cannot trust them with privileges. However, we can give them an opportunity to restore that trust through compensation and self-correction. If they succeed, their privileges are reinstated. If they fail, then, for so long as they continue to fail, they are kept without privileges and are removed to some degree from society—not because of what the past self did, but because the present self continues to prove unworthy of trust and privileges.

    If they are enough of a danger to others, then we can even curtail their rights. But that should be determined based only on present danger, never past action. And revocation of rights should be kept to the absolute minimum necessary to ensure safety.

    Restorative justice makes it possible to keep society safe and productive while still acknowledging and respecting the fact that individuals are not the same person throughout their life. Retributive justice fails to do that. Rather than trying to rationalize retributive justice by enforcing identity with the past self, we should get rid of retributive justice entirely.

  116. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I can think of no reason why that baby is meaningfully different from the fetus while it’s still inside the mother in terms of a personhood claim, a

    Then you aren’t thinking. Changes with birth (irreverible), so there are major differences, including jump starting the brain with working lungs and better hemoglobin. You don’t look at FACTS, but rather your perceptions, prejudices, and biases, and listen to slogans.

  117. Maureen Brian says

    kalirren @ 620,

    I can think of no reason why that baby is meaningfully different …

    Then I think it is time you read this – http://reclaimingjudaism.org/teachings/when-does-life-begin-jewish-view – on the Jewish doctrine that the point at which life begins is at birth and as the baby draws its first breath.

    As there was no more evidence for a god then than there is now but, on the other hand, this is about as far back as we can trace a teaching in continuous use then we can ask how it arose, how an unscientific people came to understand this to be an important threshold.

    We can only suppose that the direct observations of many midwives over centuries showed that some mightily significant change happened with exit from the birth canal and that first breath. In time this knowledge would pass into the folklore and at one of the several points when Judaism was re-codified the knowledge – for that is what it is – became not just general knowledge but a religious teaching.

    Much of what the ancients were sure they knew has been swept away, starting with Galileo’s telescope and Hooke’s microscope challenging an earlier understanding. But not everything! When in the twentieth century we at last had the ability to check we discovered that this old teaching, based on observation, was right – even if the reasons given were doubtful.

    At birth huge and irreversible changes happen and this makes it a very reasonable point from which to date a significant change in status.

  118. says

    The commission vs. omission bit is also not actually as clear as you might think.

    it’s also nonsense because you can withdraw consent for a donation as well. That’s commission.

  119. rq says

    At this point there’s no doubt that you’re living under a rock, the question is what planet that rock is on.

    Sometimes, Giliell, you rock my world planet. :)
    (Certainly not this planet, at any rate.)

  120. vaiyt says

    My point is that choosing ‘birth’ as an arbitrary point at which to confer a ‘right to life’ is just that, arbitrary, and choosing some other point in time doesn’t require religious reasoning.

    Birth is when the child’s right to life stops interfering with the woman’s bodily autonomy. You know the woman? The one carrying the child inside her, which you insist on removing from the equation? She’s a human being too, and she has personhood.

  121. says

    Another version of this:

    When a woman is pregnant, the fetus will implant and start sucking nutrients all on it’s own, without any conscious decision (or even knowledge) on the part of the woman. When she learns of the pregnancy, she still performs no conscious act; the pregnancy proceeds on it’s own.

    The pregnancy necessarily constitutes an imposition on the woman. The fetus is using her body to sustain itself. To make that lawful, it requires the deliberate and ongoing consent of the woman. I.e. it requires an act of commission on part of the woman to make the pregnancy “legal”.

    Omitting the giving of consent leaves the fetus in the place of an aggressor. Note that this is not an act of commission. The woman doesn’t “make” the fetus into an aggressor. Being an aggressor is the natural status of the fetus, seeing as how the implantation always occurs before the woman even knows about it.

    If the woman does nothing (i.e. does not give her consent), then the imposition of the fetus (however unconscious and natural) constitutes an assault on the physical integrity of the woman. At that point, the woman is under attack and has the right to defend herself by whatever means necessary to stop the assault.

    As it happens, the necessary means include severing the connection to the fetus and removing it from her body. In early stage fetuses, this inevitably leads to the death of the fetus, since it cannot sustain its own life. That may be regrettable (if you’re very attached to fetuses), but it’s most definitely within the rights of the woman to do so.

    The commission of the abortion takes place after the fetus has begun its assault on the woman. It’s a clear-cut case of self-defense. We don’t allow any other person to impose on a human being the way a fetus imposes on a woman. In any other case, if a person did that, we’d immediately recognize that the person so imposed on would have the right to protect themselves, even at the expense of the life of the other person.

    Yes, I realize that I’m basically just saying the same thing again in a different manner, but these people seem to be quite dense, so maybe this phrasing will get through.

  122. Rex Little, Giant Douchweasel says

    Tony @608: You’re welcome, and thanks for the shout-out. At the risk of spoiling the good feeling, I’ll mention that the views I’ve expressed in this thread follow directly from the principles which make me an apathetic monster and an empathy-challenged asshole (can’t find that comment to link to).

  123. Valde says

    Valde, @ 450 you raised that this autonomous activity is not the result of brain activity, but I don’t see why that should matter for a personhood claim. It’s not the mother’s brainstem that’s creating those impulses, it’s the fetus’s.

    Because what makes you a person is in your frontal lobs and cerebral cortex. Not your brainstem. Brainstem is responsible for automatic, reflexive movements etc. nothing more. Terri Schiavo – whose cortex was essentially a soup at the time of autopsy still had a working brainstem. But the seat of her personality, her mind, was gone. An anencephalic fetus – which also lacks a cortex and frontal lobe, but has a functioning brainstem, is also capable of reflexive movements – but, because a mind did not develop, and will never develop, due to the complete absence of the frontal brain, is not a person, and will never be one.

    If, according to you, the brainstem is what makes us people, then I guess non-sentient creatures, and creatures without minds can *also* be people – because the ability to react reflexively to one’s environment is the only trait needed to be a person! So yay! Personhood for house flies!

  124. says

    maddog @ 621:

    I think that’s the intent and effect of some anti abortion legislation, but not necessarily or always

    Yes, it is the intent and and effect of all anti-abortion legislation, and if you think otherwise, you don’t have the slightest idea of what legislation so far has done. Abortion is illegal, in practice, if not in fact, in South Dakota. The same legislative nastiness has been done where I live, too – North Dakota.

    I have an idea that you don’t have the slightest fucking idea of what it takes for a women to cut through the snarl of shit, and still manage to take time off, have money for travel, and money for a medical procedure, then having to work out the logistics of how to get to the clinic, where to stay for the mandatory wait, and to be sure to be at the *one* clinic in each state (SD or ND) on the few days each month they are allowed to perform termination procedures. All of that must be done inside an extremely narrow window, one which barely allows time for a woman to find out she’s pregnant in the first place.

    I had an abortion in the ’70s, and I can tell you from personal experience what it was like before people decided my body was their business – easy, safe, and accessible. It is no longer easy or accessible, and for many women, it’s not safe, either.

  125. chris61 says

    Last comment because I am too far behind to get caught up.

    “The reasons women give for having an abortion underscore their understanding of the responsibilities of parenthood and family life. Three-fourths of women cite concern for or responsibility to other individuals; three-fourths say they cannot afford a child; three-fourths say that having a baby would interfere with work, school or the ability to care for dependents; and half say they do not want to be a single parent or are having problems with their husband or partner.”

    The above is a quote from the Guttmacher Institute website based on a survey they did regarding why women who get abortions do so. I notice two things. First concern for health is not a major reason (if you go back to the original survey about 12% of women cited concerns for their health as a reason for their abortion). Second “they cannot afford a child” or “having a baby would interfere with…” suggests that these women are not having abortions because they don’t want to be pregnant but because they don’t want, for whatever reasons, to have babies at this time. If a pregnant person’s body autonomy or concern for their health are such overwhelmingly compelling reasons for legalized abortion, why don’t more women (or individuals who identify otherwise but are biologically female) who actually have abortions cite these as reasons for their own abortions?

    I also notice from the latest Gallup poll I could find on the issue (May2013) that the proportion of women who identify as prochoice (47%) is only slightly greater than the proportion of men who identify as such (42%), which to me at least indicates that in referring to any restrictions on abortion as a misogynist attitude means you’re calling a hell of a lot of women misogynistic. I also note that 49% of Americans consider it morally wrong (as opposed to 42% who consider it morally right) and that number hasn’t changed much over the last ten years or, as far as I can tell, over the last 40. You may draw your own conclusions but I conclude that name calling aside the arguments made by either side have, as yet, failed to be compelling.

  126. Rex Little, Giant Douchweasel says

    Apropos of the numbers in Chris’ last paragraph, I remember reading once that the demographic with the greatest support for abortion rights (by percentage) is young, single men. Don’t know if that’s true or just apocryphal.

  127. Forelle says

    I’ve stopped at 576. I don’t have the time to read any further right now. So many things… but I’ll choose this statement of chris61′s at 576:

    I understand that if you don’t believe a fetus is a human being then that argument carries no weight but not everyone feels that way and feeling that way does not require a belief in religion.

    So when cornered, because she can’t really argue very well her opposition, chris61 resorts to ‘feelings.’ But we can’t legislate exclusively from feelings. Not less because many people will be extremely hurt if we can’t apply some reason, which sounds quite unfeeling, and so on.

    Speaking of feelings, I might have linked before to this harrowing article about raped women in Rwanda and their offspring (in Spanish, sorry). It’s heartbreaking to read about these unfortunate women, who have at best an ambivalent relationship to their children, and it’s impossible not to pity those children. I couldn’t help wondering: if people like chris61 a) don’t find any significative differences between fetuses and born children and b) accept abortion in case of rape, does it mean that these children could have been killed, I don’t know, when toddlers, with at least moral impunity?

    More about feelings. This bit by Stephen Minhinnick about problems to conceive impressed me:

    You really have to have experienced what it is like before you can judge. It is like experiencing a death in the family every month.

    The fact that no one commented on this comparison made me suspect: 1) you’re more considerate people than I am; 2) we’re so steeped in the fetus=person identification, that we don’t bat an eyelid anymore at such hyperbole. I have several examples of childlesness around me, and I’ve known about miscarriages in my own family, plus a stillbirth, and I understand that all these can (not must) be extremely painful, but really? Is this like losing a baby, a young child, an adult… every month?

  128. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    If a pregnant person’s body autonomy or concern for their health are such overwhelmingly compelling reasons for legalized abortion, why don’t more women

    Irrelevant fuckwittery. Either a woman is fully human with full human rights, including bodily autonomy, or she is a second class citizen. Why do you require women to be second class citizens? Show your work, that doesn’t involve a fetus, because that fetus changes nothing.

  129. anteprepro says

    If a pregnant person’s body autonomy or concern for their health are such overwhelmingly compelling reasons for legalized abortion, why don’t more women (or individuals who identify otherwise but are biologically female) who actually have abortions cite these as reasons for their own abortions?

    Because they were structured interview questions that didn’t give “bodily autonomy” as an option and where health was only one question, that specifically phrased it as “having health problems”.

    which to me at least indicates that in referring to any restrictions on abortion as a misogynist attitude means you’re calling a hell of a lot of women misogynistic.

    Yes, women can never support patriarchy or be sexist against other women. Amazing. That argument was bound to come up eventually.

    You may draw your own conclusions but I conclude that name calling aside the arguments made by either side have, as yet, failed to be compelling.

    For the longest time, you could have said the exact same thing about gay marriage. You can still say the same thing about religion. Argumentum ad populum. People are stupid, biased, underinformed, and illogical. Their opinions on a subject is no indicator of the quality of arguments or the validity of positions that they take a stance on.

  130. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    suggests that these women are not having abortions because they don’t want to be pregnant but because they don’t want, for whatever reasons, to have babies at this time.

    Not wanting to have a baby sort of entails not wanting to be pregnant, you incoherent fuck.

  131. Valde says

    I also notice from the latest Gallup poll I could find on the issue (May2013) that the proportion of women who identify as prochoice (47%) is only slightly greater than the proportion of men who identify as such (42%), which to me at least indicates that in referring to any restrictions on abortion as a misogynist attitude means you’re calling a hell of a lot of women misogynistic.</blockquote

    And lots of women perform FGM and believe that Islam is right to consider women second class citizens. However, Islam cannot be misogynistic, by your reasoning, because women support it!

  132. says

    @chris61

    these women are not having abortions because they don’t want to be pregnant but because they don’t want, for whatever reasons, to have babies at this time.

    Seriously, do you read this stuff before you hit “post”? Or is it just that nobody ever explained to you the connection between pregnancies and babies?

    If a pregnant person’s body autonomy or concern for their health are such overwhelmingly compelling reasons for legalized abortion, why don’t more women (or individuals who identify otherwise but are biologically female) who actually have abortions cite these as reasons for their own abortions?

    Actually, they sorta do, you just didn’t notice. The bodily rights are implicitly invoked whenever a woman expresses any opinion on the matter. The reason why her opinion is important is because it’s her body. That’s incidentally also the reason why your opinion on someone else’s pregnancy isn’t important; because it’s not your body.

    It seems like you don’t quite understand what the right to bodily autonomy is actually about.
    Bodily rights are not contingent on physical harm being done. It’s not about whether your health is in danger. It’s about the fact that it’s your body and you get to decide what people get to do with it.

    Bodily rights aren’t about what you do, but about who gets to decide what you do. Understand the difference? Asking why women don’t cite bodily autonomy as a reason for having an abortion is like asking why the President doesn’t cite his title as a reason for a specific policy. The title is what allows him to decide policy, but it’s not a reason for picking one policy over another.

  133. says

    If a pregnant person’s body autonomy or concern for their health are such overwhelmingly compelling reasons for legalized abortion, why don’t more women (or individuals who identify otherwise but are biologically female) who actually have abortions cite these as reasons for their own abortions?

    You don’t know what bodily autonomy is, or what it means, do you? (By the way, I’m still waiting on that list of male bodily autonomy restrictions.)

    Having the right to bodily autonomy means that a woman is able to obtain an a safe, legal abortion, full stop. The rest of it is none of your fucking business, and it’s not anyone else’s either. Pregnancy is a medical condition. Terminating a pregnancy is a medical procedure. Giving birth is a medical procedure. Are you noting all the ‘medical’ in that? It’s important. You don’t get a say over what takes place between me and my neurologist every 6 months. You don’t get a say over the procedures I choose to avail myself of at the pain clinic every month. You don’t get a say as to my physical therapy. Why not? Because I am granted full human status in that regard, with full rights to bodily autonomy. *My* choice, with no interference from you, or the government. No one is busy legislating ‘Inaji’s choices in regard to neurological treatments of her spine.”

    Having autonomy is being granted full human status, full stop. That autonomy doesn’t stop (well, it shouldn’t) because I got pregnant and will now make some medical decisions. The reasons any woman might choose to terminate a pregnancy are her business, and hers alone. Why in the fuckety fuck do people like you think you have a right, not only to legislate a woman’s autonomy when it comes to contraception, terminations, and other various conditions of being pregnant, but get to dig into her head and demand the reason why for any decision? Instead, mind your own damn business, and I assure you, no one will force you to terminate a pregnancy which takes place in the confines of your body.

  134. says

    There are plenty of secular ‘arguments’ against abortion. The problem is each and every single one of those arguments works equally well as an argument in support of rape.

    If you think of women as actual people, you will never find a convincing argument against abortion.

  135. Rey Fox says

    If a pregnant person’s body autonomy or concern for their health are such overwhelmingly compelling reasons for legalized abortion, why don’t more women (or individuals who identify otherwise but are biologically female) who actually have abortions cite these as reasons for their own abortions?

    I’ve been beaten to this already, but the answer is that their bodily autonomy is taken for granted. Funny that.

  136. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    If a pregnant person’s body autonomy or concern for their health are such overwhelmingly compelling reasons for legalized abortion, why don’t more women (or individuals who identify otherwise but are biologically female) who actually have abortions cite these as reasons for their own abortions?

    Their bodily autonomy is not the reason they have an abortion. It is the reason why they are entitled to cite ANY DAMN REASON THEY SEE FIT for having an abortion.

  137. says

    So…outside of physician assisted suicide, what are the restrictions on male bodily autonomy? I’d like a list please.

    Of the top of my head:

    1. Cases in which the bodily movement would hurt another. (theft, rape, murder etc.)
    2. Cases in which potential harm to another has been deemed to outweigh the respecting of the autonomy, i.e. drunk driving.
    3. Cases in which the legal enforcement of the decision made would be highly problematic, indentured servitude, voluntary “slavery” etc.
    4. Cases of euthanasia in which the person is not dying.
    5. Cases of property rights generated by a person’s labor not being fully respected. I.e taxes.
    6. Cases of what substances that are allowed to be consumed generally, i.e. war on drugs and age restrictions on alcohol, and “sin” taxes.
    7. Cases of working for standards below legally mandated minimums, but above indentured servitude.
    8. Cases in which the autonomy is regulated because of the annoyance to others but does no substantial harm, i.e. noise pollution ordinances.
    9. Cases in which certain things must be purchased, i.e. individual mandate in ACA.
    10. Cases in which the bodily movement does harm to non-human living things, i.e. animal cruelty laws

  138. rq says

    Interesting…

    Three-fourths of women cite concern for or responsibility to other individuals; three-fourths say they cannot afford a child; three-fourths say that having a baby would interfere with work, school or the ability to care for dependents; and half say they do not want to be a single parent or are having problems with their husband or partner.

    Those all sound like excellent reasons to me for having an abortion. But no, I have been schooled!
    And so, knowing that I may be unable to support a baby at x point in time makes me a horrible person for choosing abortion, even though, if I did have that baby, everyone’s lives would be miserable! Excellent. And fair, of course, because everyone is miserable. Except Fetus, because Fetus is #1 in this scenario, and all those other children / sick elderly parents I may have depending on me being capable to care for them will take care of themselves from now on. And because I’m carrying Fetus, I will have no health problems whatsoever! (Excuse me while I go puke from laughing too hard.)
    And here I always thought that having the appropriate resources to care for a baby after birth was important – those resources including time, energy, education, and financial means, among others. Not to mention the support of those close to me.

  139. rq says

    michael kellymiecielica @657
    I think the question was for restrictions to bodily autonomy specific to men and their bodily autonomy. Your list applies equally to all people. Where are the restrictions that only apply to male bodily autonomy?

  140. says

    rq @660

    1) I don’t see anything that turns on the gender differences on this point, at least as far my underlying position goes. I don’t see how a person can think a woman’s bodily autonomy is absolute in terms of abortion to the point that the fetus does not warrant any (legal) consideration* but woman’s autonomy can ALSO regulated, legally, in the above ways.

    2) Obviously my list can be made more specific, i.e. 3) can become male-male voluntary sex “slavery”

    *I’m one of those “horrible, shameful” people, at least according to some commentators here, who is Pro-choice-with-fewer-choices in that I don’t think the position of abortion at any point in the pregnancy is sustainable without an absolute understanding of autonomy which logically entails other positions that are poisonous. That is something I cannot support. I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point. I think viability is a relatively OK line to draw but it is problematic, obviously.

    I should also say, as I’m about to be savaged, a women’s life always override consideration of the fetus and I think we should be handing out birth control and condoms like candy. We should start doing this around 7th grade. I also think many of the reasons why abortion is considered, i.e. poverty, should be addressed a hella of lot more than they are now.

  141. says

    @657:

    Of the top of my head:

    Congratulations, you don’t know what bodily autonomy means! We are not talking about people breaking the law and encountering consequences here. I would like a list, please, of all the specific bodily restrictions put on men, where they are not allowed to make specific medical decisions for themselves, or have specific physical conditions subject to legislation, wherein a male person would be forced to do something they do not wish to do, such as carry a pregnancy to term and give birth. Or, please list for me all the ways in which male people are denied the contraception of their choice.

    Don’t play games here, either. The thread is too fucking long, and no more doucheweasels are required.

  142. says

    @michael kellymiecielica
    Are you seriously telling me that you think telling someone to turn the music down is a restriction anywhere near the level of telling them they have to carry another organism within their body?

    I also note that several of your points relate to property, which isn’t a part of your body. Seriously, are we going to have to draw a chart, here?

  143. says

    I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point.

    It’s just amazing, isn’t it, Cupcake, how easy that position is to hold, when one can’t get pregnant. It’s also easy to hold that position when you callously don’t give a shit about anyone else’s life past the point where you get to feel all superior as to what you think they may or may not do.

  144. Gen, Uppity Ingrate and Ilk says

    That is something I cannot support. I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point.

    Well at least he says it plainly: Women are supposed to be slaves to a potentiality.

  145. Amphiox says

    If a pregnant person’s body autonomy or concern for their health are such overwhelmingly compelling reasons for legalized abortion, why don’t more women (or individuals who identify otherwise but are biologically female) who actually have abortions cite these as reasons for their own abortions?

    Because bodily autonomy is the right to choose what happens to one’s body for ANY REASON. No one cites “bodily autonomy” as A specific reason, but it covers ALL reasons.

  146. Amphiox says

    I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point.

    That point, such as it is, is the point of viability, when induced birth becomes the proper medical procedure and abortion ceases to be indicated except in rare, exceptional circumstances. And even here the consideration of the fetus NEVER overrides the woman’s autonomy absolutely, since induced birth satisfies both considerations. The only autonomy that is taken from the woman is the autonomy of choosing the precise method by which her pregnancy should be terminated – ie she can’t demand an abortion when induced birth is deemed medically preferable.

    But that is a level of autonomy that no one actually has. One cannot go to a physician and demand an amputation of one’s leg and get it if the physician does not deem the procedure to be medically indicated.

  147. Amphiox says

    re 657;

    Only one of your entire list is actually a case of bodily autonomy. The rest are autonomy of action. And the level of justification for limiting autonomy of action is much lower than the level of justification needed to violate bodily autonomy.

  148. says

    michael kellymiecielica#661

    I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point.

    Given that your status as an actual person doesn’t override anyone else’s bodily autonomy, you’re going to need a much stronger case than you’ve made so far that possible personhood does. You won’t, of course, because a) there isn’t such a case, as has been exhaustively noted in this thread, and b)the fetus doesn’t actually mean a damn thing to you, in the end. You make some vague slippery slope allusion about how late term abortion leads to ‘unacceptable’ things (like what?), ignoring the fact, which has been pointed out at least a dozen times in this thread, that standard abortion practice for a viable fetus, in those rare cases where it actually occurs, results in a live baby except in cases where the woman’s health prohibits this. In practice, late term abortions effectively universally occur in cases where there is no possibility of a live, viable baby occurring regardless of medical intervention, or in cases where an earlier abortion was desired but made unavailable, which pretty much voids your pathetic excuse for an argument on the facts even if it was tenable on principles, which it isn’t.
    TL;DR: You’re a disingenuous fuckweasel who needs to shut your ignorant noise hole and read the fucking thread.

  149. ajb47 says

    michael kellymiecielica @661

    That is something I cannot support. I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point. I think viability is a relatively OK line to draw but it is problematic, obviously.

    Someone else who hasn’t read the thread very closely. I’ll try asking the question this time: If we can force a woman to use her body for the fetus, why can’t we force people to donate a kidney or a lung, or half a liver? We can’t even force a a parent to donate blood to their child, yet you think that at some point it’s OK to force a woman through a pregnancy she doesn’t want. Why doesn’t an actual person’s life override your autonomy such that you should be forced to donate a kidney if yours is the best match?

  150. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point.

    In other words, women don’t count, just your potential property called children. Typical libertudian bullshit.

  151. says

    WithinThisMind @654:

    If you think of women as actual people, you will never find a convincing argument against abortion.

    ^This.
    It doesn’t matter if the argument is religious or secular. All of the arguments against abortion are predicated on denying women their full rights as human beings.

  152. A. Noyd says

    chris61 (#644)

    Last comment because I am too far behind to get caught up.

    Then you shouldn’t be making this comment. Why the fuck do you deserve to be heard if you’re not going to listen to others? That’s not how things work around here. (Indicating you’ll get caught up later like Forelle did in #646 is fine.)

  153. A. Noyd says

    michael kellymiecielica (#661)

    I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point.

    So why should people who are not the woman force her to stustain it? Maybe you can do better than chris in answering why forcing a fetus to be born is superior to killing it.

  154. ChasCPeterson says

    So Silverman merely pointed out that secular arguments against abortion exist. I had the temerity to suggest what one of them might be, without defending it (and then the SIWOTI to address a few of the stupider responses to me).

    If anybody is interested in reading somebody who actually believes and makes such arguments, here you go.
    Chew it!

  155. A. Noyd says

    Lyke X (#663)

    I also note that several of your points relate to property, which isn’t a part of your body.

    Why do I have a feeling we’re dealing with someone who thinks property is actually more precious than one’s body?

    ~*~*~*~*~*~

    Tony (#673)

    All of the arguments against abortion are predicated on denying women their full rights as human beings.

    And funny how the arguments almost never state the premise behind all of them, that women are untrustworthy and irresponsible and will kill a viable fetus for no good reason at all and have magical powers that convince doctors to go along with it.

  156. says

    michael @661:

    I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point. I think viability is a relatively OK line to draw but it is problematic, obviously.

    I should also say, as I’m about to be savaged, a women’s life always override consideration of the fetus and I think we should be handing out birth control and condoms like candy.

    You deserve all the savaging you’re likely to get.
    There is not situation wherein women should lose their rights to bodily autonomy. The presence of a fetus within a woman’s body doesn’t cause her to lose that basic right.

  157. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    I’m waaay too late to this, and not remotely in the mood to argue so I’m just going to repeat what some others have said regarding Silverman singling out abortion.

    He singled out abortion. He specifically claimed that there is no secular argument against gay marriage or the right to die, but there is for abortion.
    If you interpret this as him not stating his personal preferences or saying anything about the validity of the argument, then what about all those non-religious people who are against marraige equality or right to die? Is he so ignorant not to know of their existence? A bit hard to believe.

    The second interpretation is that saying that secular arguments against abortion exist meant valid secular arguments against abortion exist. Which is just bad. He was in the middle of a conservative conference, trying to “convert” in a sense, and he decided to give them ground on abortion? Yay. Nice to know his priorities.

    I don’t feel particularly betrayed, since I never considered him my “leader” anyway, but I understand why other women who feel (or used to feel) they belong to the movement do.

    So anyway, that’s what I don’t get. You can’t actually claim he only meant to say there exist some secular arguments against abortion (no value assigned) without acknowledging he’s a bloody idiot if he genuinely doesn’t know there exist secular arguments against gay marriage and right to die too.

  158. anteprepro says

    Chas, again, go fuck yourself. We had probably managed to mostly forget your contribution to this thread, and yet you have to go and step in it all over again. Just shut the fuck up already.

  159. rq says

    Chas’ link: Fetus fetus, fetus fetus fetus fetus. Fetus – fetus fetus fetus fetus; fetus fetus fetus.
    It’s a secular argument, alright: fetuses have rights. So do women who bear them. But sometimes fetuses should have more rights! Yay!

    The end, though, she may have a point – a good secular argument against abortion is more and better sex.ed. But limiting or denying access to abortion in the meantime is not the answer.

  160. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    Chas,

    I don’t agree with Mehta either. I skimmed the article, since I’m half asleep, but I’m afraid it will just be more nauseating on a more thorough read tomorrow.

    I do love me some schadenfreude, but there are different levels. You now seem to be deriving pleasure from Mehta being against abortion? That’s… really nasty.
    (taken from the tone of those two sentences)

  161. chris61 says

    #594 Noyd

    You say “This right here is why you need to justify forcing the fetus to be born and live. You want to remove a woman’s bodily autonomy on the assumption that the morally superior option is forced life. That it’s so morally superior we should restrict other rights to make sure it happens. I disagree.”

    You are making that decision based on an opinion or perhaps a moral imperative if you prefer (that some people hold regardless of their religious affiliation or lack thereof) that destroying a human life requires a good reason. In this case pregnancy may impinge on the body autonomy of the woman (generally but not always temporarily) but abortion removes forever the body autonomy of the fetus.

  162. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    I do note that a C Peterson made a (pro-choice) comment on Mehta’s article. Appreciated.
    Still, no need to go into asshole mode when here.

  163. rq says

    the body autonomy of the fetus

    The fetus has no bodily autonomy. By definition. It is a fetus, not an individual,autonomous human being.

  164. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    but abortion removes forever the body autonomy of the fetus.

    Gee, can’t you ever stop lying? First of all, late term abortions of a viable fetus is called birth. It is also an abortion if the pregnancy is terminated early for any reason. That is reality.
    Second, the fetus is not a person, and won’t be until it is born. Until you can show it separate from the woman and breathing on its own, it doesn’t have its own autonomy.

  165. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    Thanks for the correction, rq.

    Well, shit.
    I will amend my previous post. I don’t agree with Kristine Kruszelnicki, and really, I don’t understand what the fuck Mehta was thinking. He supports her position? He just likes to support different views, because diversity, valuing dissenting opinions, blah?

  166. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    abortion removes forever the body autonomy of the fetus

    Defending yourself against someone who is violating your body does not violate anyone’s bodily autonomy, not even that of a fetus because nobody, INCLUDING FETUSES, has the right to use another person’s body for life support.

  167. chris61 says

    #690 Seven of Mine,

    Why doesn’t a fetus have the right to use its mother body for gestation? Its life depends on it.

    #688 Nerd & #687 rq

    If the fetus has no body autonomy in law that is because of the law. It is not some kind of engraved-in-stone fact.

  168. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Why doesn’t a fetus have the right to use its mother body for gestation? Its life depends on it.

    For the same reason you can’t march up to someone and forcibly confiscate their kidney from them if you need a transplant. Even if they caused the condition resulting in your need for a new kidney. Even if they’re your parent.

    Have you read ANYTHING that has been said to you in this thread? Seriously What. The. Actual. Fuck.

  169. says

    the body autonomy of the fetus

    Oh FFS. A fetus is a fetus, it isn’t a person. It has no bodily autonomy. You are aware, are you not, that birth is a termination of a pregnancy? Do you want to outlaw those terminations, too?

    Learn to think, instead of relying on your personal ickometer.

  170. says

    Why doesn’t a fetus have the right to use its mother body for gestation? Its life depends on it.

    LEARN TO THINK, PLEASE. Failing that, at least read the godsdamn thread, which has covered this ground extensively, and try to fucking comprehend the words people have spent much time typing.

    Yes, a fetus is dependent on a woman, which is why a woman has the right to expunge it from her body. A fetus does not have the right to my body, does not have the right to dictate how my life will go, etc., any more than a tumor does.

  171. says

    chris

    First concern for health is not a major reason (if you go back to the original survey about 12% of women cited concerns for their health as a reason for their abortion). Second “they cannot afford a child” or “having a baby would interfere with…” suggests that these women are not having abortions because they don’t want to be pregnant but because they don’t want, for whatever reasons, to have babies at this time.

    Do you understand that there is a difference between reasons somebody has for wanting a procedure and reasons why such a procedure should be legal?
    I’m honestly asking, because so far you didn’t demonstrate to be the sharpest knife in the drawer.
    If you asked people why they eat ice-cream, would you expect them to tell you about the legal philosophy why ice-cream eating was permitted, or give you a treaties on how ice-cream does not endanger their health?

    +++
    beatrice
    I said the same in the other thread: Silverman singled out abortion. He surely knows the stupid secular reasons against gay marriage or assisted suicide, because they exist as well. By saying that abortion is not so clear cut he rightfully dismisses the secular reasons agaist those issues and gives those against abortion validity.

  172. says

    Why doesn’t a fetus have the right to use its mother body for gestation?

    Oh, and this? Lose it. I was pregnant at one point in my life. It was a short pregnancy, terminated as quickly as possible. I was not then a mother, nor have I been a mother since. I have never wanted to be a mother. I was a woman who was pregnant, not a mother. Do not presume that every woman who ends up pregnant is a mother, or wants to be one. A mother is someone who has a child, not someone who has a fetus.

  173. anteprepro says

    Yes. The bodily autonomy of the fetus. Right. Well if some parasite invades the fetus and starts sucking nutrients from it, affects its health, and is guaranteed to leave its body in a quite painful manner when it is fully grown, I fully support the fetus’s right to remove that parasite!

  174. anteprepro says

    A mother is someone who has a child, not someone who has a fetus.

    And this is why I come here. I would have never thought of this point before and have mistakenly referred to women in these situations as “the mother” before. Thanks Inaji!

  175. rq says

    If the fetus has no body autonomy in law that is because of the law. It is not some kind of engraved-in-stone fact.

    Actually, the fetus isn’t autonomous. That’s a fact.
    Even if it was, it cannot make its right to life contingent on the woman carrying it. As has been addressed in this thread multiple times.

  176. says

    Why doesn’t a fetus have the right to use its mother body for gestation? Its life depends on it.

    Christ, here we go again. You’re actually just going to pretend that the entire preceding thread doesn’t exist, aren’t you?

    My rights don’t disappear because you need something. Once again for the really hard of hearing: That’s not how we do things in any other circumstance! No born human being has the rights that you so freely want to grant fetuses.

  177. cuervocuero says

    Good to see the secular arguments for uterus owners to cede bodily autonomy to the State that will then not support the consequences of forced pregnancies on its citizens consist of…

    …well, how about that, same register dog whistles as religious arguments that dismiss the personhood and suffering of those foolish enough to be born with the biological equipment to brood offsprogs (and using the same lousy scientificish ‘evidence’).

    The Ideal Baby uber alles, hoist upon the selfish spear tips of those who just don’t understand the Natural (Fallacy) Benefit they are forfeiting by being such un-natural creatures.
    Is there an evolutionary element to all this? Do those that want to control the pregnancy of others have some primal fear that the discard of a fetus means their own genetics are in danger, because if uterus owners are willy nilly free to punt pregnancy, ergo at some point, whoops, there goes Jr. and all of immortality?

    If ‘rational’ people want to worry about offsprogs, why isn’t emphasis shifted to making the species/tribal environment pregnancy and baby-raising friendly? Why the emphasis on forcing pregnancy on the uterus owners of the species to gestate in what they decide is high stress, low survival benefit times and surroundings, as if they have no faculty for higher thinking themselves?

    How did forced pregnancy come to be considered a species Good? What thinking concludes that offsprogs developed under such forced conditions are better prepared to survive and thrive than offsprogs developed under conditions the natal mother finds better suited? Other animals are built to abort when conditions are shit and if they can stop conception, they do and their survival tilts higher when an abortion is sooner than later. There will be no future generations if existing breeding adult/potential natal mothers are dead/debilitated, especially in species where offsprogs require long term tending.

    Horrible, forced pregnancy puppy/kitten/whatever farms get anti-cruelty groups on the warpath. Yet for our own human species, too many people want to both force gestation on fellow sentients *and* allow crappy living environments for the born, while ignoring reality to invoke Potential Magic that Everything-Will-Be-Fine if uterus owners just lay back and think of Utopia once they’ve crossed the threshold of Baby Bliss.

    I just don’t get it.

  178. Valde says

    Kristine once made the argument, to Matt Dillahunty, that abortion is wrong because the uterus was made for the fetus.

    Basically, her entire argument revolves around special pleading for the fetus. Pregnancy is unique, it’s what uterus owners were made for, therefore, birth should be forced.

  179. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    So. Anyone asked Mehta why he promoted Kruszelnicki?

  180. says

    @Valde
    She seems to have gotten a bit more sophisticated since last time. However, if you scratch the surface, the arguments are still the same old favorites: Naturalistic fallacies, special pleading, emotional appeals, and misrepresentation.

  181. says

    Pregnancy is unique, it’s what uterus owners were made for, therefore, birth should be forced.

    Fucking hell I hate people who try to generate teleology from biology. (I realize this is not your argument Valde; my comment is aimed at Kristine)

  182. says

    Cuervocuero:

    I just don’t get it.

    It’s all about control. For centuries, misogyny was all comfy happy because, “hey, women’s nature!” and with dicey birth control and not such a sure thing abortifacients, it was considered a woman’s lot in life to get knocked up and have the babies.

    Now we have a situation in which women have potential access to things like an education, and contraception that works well, and in situations where it fails, the ability to terminate safely. Lotsa people don’t much like the fact that a woman can just up and decide to have sex and not have to pay the natural price for doing so.

    People now whinge and wring their hands over the fetuses because it goes over better than “damn sluts must pay!”, but it’s not about the fetuses, and it’s not about the infant you forced a woman to birth, either. They don’t give one thought, let alone a shit, about what happens after a woman is forced to carry and birth.

  183. says

    Is there an evolutionary element to all this? Do those that want to control the pregnancy of others have some primal fear that the discard of a fetus means their own genetics are in danger, because if uterus owners are willy nilly free to punt pregnancy, ergo at some point, whoops, there goes Jr. and all of
    immortality?/

    I doubt it’s that direct. I think it really is an instinctive “but, babies!” response, which they then rationalize and try to defend with whatever they can grab hold of. The instinct to protect children is obviously tied to evolution, but that’s as far as it goes, I think.

  184. Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought says

    I browsed the prolifehumanists site a bit. *headdesk*

  185. says

    That was supposed to be:

    Is there an evolutionary element to all this? Do those that want to control the pregnancy of others have some primal fear that the discard of a fetus means their own genetics are in danger, because if uterus owners are willy nilly free to punt pregnancy, ergo at some point, whoops, there goes Jr. and all of immortality?

    I doubt it’s that direct. I think it really is an instinctive “but, babies!” response, which they then rationalize and try to defend with whatever they can grab hold of. The instinct to protect children is obviously tied to evolution, but that’s as far as it goes, I think.

  186. A. Noyd says

    chris61 (#684)

    You are making that decision based on an opinion or perhaps a moral imperative if you prefer…that destroying a human life requires a good reason.

    What decision? I’m not deciding anything. And YOU are the one using that as a reason. I’m not granting you that, I’m contesting it holds true in the case of a fetus. I’m disagreeing that the superior moral imperative is to force a fetus to be born. You need to give good reason for forcing a fetus to be born—a reason that is also sufficient to justify overriding the wishes and bodily autonomy of the woman carrying it.

    Are you really too dumb to grasp what I’m saying? It’s not like I’m asking you to agree with me.

    but abortion removes forever the body autonomy of the fetus.

    You’re still not acknowledging that abortion does not require the death of the fetus. Some fetuses survive abortion. Why the fuck are you still lying about this? Also, the whole reason a fetus would die is that its body is so dependent on the woman’s it cannot survive without using her. Which is the opposite of autonomous.

    Words. Have. Meaning.

  187. says

    Kristine once made the argument, to Matt Dillahunty, that abortion is wrong because the uterus was made for the fetus.

    Honestly, if I ever become pregnant again, the fetus can keep the uterus. I just need both of it removed from my fuckin’ body. Would get me rid of all those useless periods with their cramps and everything.

  188. Valde says

    There are some people on that TFA thread saying that women who abort should go to jail, and one guy is even comparing female sexuality to dangerous driving.

    I always ask them the dangerous driving question to see how much they despise women.

  189. anteprepro says

    Oooo. Pro-life atheists can claim notable liberal Christopher Hitchens. Oh my word, my whole worldview is shattered!

    Prolife Humanist:

    When it comes to normal human reproduction, sperm and ovum merge to form a new whole. They cease to exist individually and become a new substance that is not the mother and not the father but a new body altogether,…

    But why isn’t a fetus self-aware or sentient? Why hasn’t an embryo developed a functioning brain or the capacity to breathe on its own? Isn’t it merely because she or he is younger? Isn’t that just the way human beings at their age and stage naturally develop and function? While we wouldn’t give our car keys to toddlers on account of their current capacities, neither would we kill them for not having reached a developmental milestone yet

    Yes. They think a zygote is fully human. Because ageism. Secular arguments against abortion, people!

  190. anteprepro says

    There are some people on that TFA thread saying that women who abort should go to jail, and one guy is even comparing female sexuality to dangerous driving.

    *eye twitch*

    What the fuck is wrong with this planet?

  191. nich says

    Kristine once made the argument, to Matt Dillahunty, that abortion is wrong because the uterus was made for the fetus.

    Ugh ugh effing ugh. And homosexuality is wrong because teh virginas go with the penisez and not the buttholez.

  192. Amphiox says

    suggests that these women are not having abortions because they don’t want to be pregnant but because they don’t want, for whatever reasons, to have babies at this time.

    And I thought it would be impossible for chris to say anything stupider than “The state is not forcing a woman to remain pregnant, the state is refusing to grant access to legal abortion after a certain gestational age.”

    Oh how wrong I was!

    Oh FFS. A fetus is a fetus, it isn’t a person. It has no bodily autonomy. You are aware, are you not, that birth is a termination of a pregnancy? Do you want to outlaw those terminations, too?

    You know, consider how bitterly they wail, and how near-universal such crying is, it would seem that the vast majority of fetuses probably DIDN’T WANT to be born and turned, against their will, into babies.

    In fact, we even see physiological evidence of a “trauma-line” in the fingernails and teeth that corresponds to the moment of birth.

    Every birth is a gross violation of a fetus’ bodily autonomy. Their head is squeezed like toothpaste until the shape changes from round to oblong. Their umbilical cord, their source of all nourishment and support, gets cut off. The placenta, which they have been intimately attached to for their entire existence, is ripped away. The very pattern of their heart and blood vessels gets altered by that first blast of oxygenated air. And it is all against their will, without their consent.

    If fetuses had bodily autonomy, no delivery could be ethically performed until informed consent had been first obtained from the fetus.

  193. A. Noyd says

    Valde (#713)

    and one guy is even comparing female sexuality to dangerous driving.

    Maybe he should take that up with nature, then. Nature’s the one that locks cishet women into a car with no brakes and then demand we go places. Men are the ones who jump in the car asking for a joyride.

  194. says

    chris61 @684:

    You are making that decision based on an opinion or perhaps a moral imperative if you prefer (that some people hold regardless of their religious affiliation or lack thereof) that destroying a human life requires a good reason. In this case pregnancy may impinge on the body autonomy of the woman (generally but not always temporarily) but abortion removes forever the body autonomy of the fetus.

    I see you did not read my #608.

    Abortion is the termination of pregnancy by the removal or expulsion from the uterus of a fetus or embryo before viability.[note 1] An abortion can occur spontaneously, in which case it is often called a miscarriage, or it can be purposely induced. The term abortion most commonly refers to the induced abortion of a human pregnancy.

    Abortion is NOT the termination of a fetus. It is the termination of a pregnancy.
    If you’re going to take part in this discussion, you damn sure ought to understand what words mean.

    Your misunderstanding of abortion aside, rq made an excellent point @687.

    I notice your focus is exclusively on the rights of the fetus to life. You ignore the right to bodily autonomy that women possess. Your position is that under certain circumstances, a fetus’ rights can override a woman’s rights. You resolve the conflict by handwaving the woman’s rights.
    Conflict resolution doesn’t work that way. You have to provide sufficient justification for overriding the woman’s bodily autonomy in favor of the fetus’ right to life. Given that the fetus resides in the woman’s body, and given further that no human being can be compelled to donate organs or otherwise be forced in any way to save the life of another human being, the woman’s right to bodily autonomy trumps the fetus’ right.

  195. says

    If the fetus has no body autonomy in law that is because of the law. It is not some kind of engraved-in-stone fact.

    Yes, it is an engraved-in-stone fact. This is the internet, y’know. Locate an online dictionary and look up the words autonomous and autonomy, as you seem not to have the slightest fucking idea of what they mean.

    A fetus is not autonomous, it is utterly dependent on another lifeform, which is the stellar opposite of autonomous. All the laws in the world will not change that. You said yourself, earlier, that a fetus is utterly dependent on another for gestational life. Now you want to say the law is why fetuses don’t have autonomy? Are you truly that stupid, or are you just playing games?

  196. Amphiox says

    Why doesn’t a fetus have the right to use its mother body for gestation? Its life depends on it.

    NO human has the right to use another human’s body for anything without consent, regardless of whether its life depends on it.

    To grant such a right to a fetus implies either (or both) of two things.

    1) The fetus is MORE than human, and deserves rights THAT NO HUMAN IS ENTITLED TO.
    2) A pregnant woman is LESS than human, such that the rights that ALL HUMANS ARE ENTITLED TO do not apply to her.

  197. Amphiox says

    Abortion is the termination of pregnancy by the removal or expulsion from the uterus of a fetus or embryo before viability.

    Note also that the definitions states “before viability.”

    Once we reach fetal viability, we’re not talking about abortion anymore.

  198. says

    It’s also important to note that even if we grant the fetus full bodily autonomy, it wouldn’t rule out abortions, since bodily autonomy doesn’t grant you rights to other people’s bodies, only your own. If you’re imposing on another person’s bodily autonomy (as the fetus is unquestionably imposing on the woman), your bodily autonomy doesn’t grant you the right to continue imposing on them in the face of their lacking consent.

    The argument that chris is trying here would also rule out any use of force in self-defense. As I’m getting hoarse from repeating: That’s not how it works in any other case.

  199. rq says

    I learn a lot on these threads, too. A lot. Enough to feel brave enough to throw in a comment or two. I’m just sad these kinds of threads have to occur at all.
    Thank you, Horde!

    (As serious as it is, A. Noyd @718, thanks for the pre-bed giggle. Beautiful imagery.)

  200. says

    If a pregnant person’s body autonomy or concern for their health are such overwhelmingly compelling reasons for legalized abortion, why don’t more women (or individuals who identify otherwise but are biologically female) who actually have abortions cite these as reasons for their own abortions?

    you’re very confused. “bodily autonomy” is not a reason for abortion, bodily autonomy is a reason for the absolute right to one.

    - – - – - – -

    Obviously my list can be made more specific, i.e. 3) can become male-male voluntary sex “slavery”

    1)s/D relationships like that ere entirely legal. the fuck are you talking about. 2)presenting male examples of something that applies to men and women equally doesn’t make it male-specific.

    I don’t think the position of abortion at any point in the pregnancy is sustainable without an absolute understanding of autonomy which logically entails other positions that are poisonous.

    of which you’ve provided no examples, since not a single thing in 657 has to do with bodily autonomy. bodily autonomy isn’t a term for “do whatever the fuck you want”. it’s a term for “have full control what happens TO your body.”

    Issues of bodily autonomy are things like right to die, abortion, informed medical consent, freedom from bodily harm, right to give or withdraw medical and sexual consent, etc. The sole ethical “restriction” here is when two bodily autonomy rights interfere with each other, at which point standard rules for “self-defense” apply.

    I think at some point the fetus’s stasis as a (possible) person must be taken in account and this must overrides a women’s autonomy at some point.

    I’m glad you at least admit you’re ok with temporarily enslaving women.

    Why doesn’t a fetus have the right to use its mother body for gestation? Its life depends on it.

    for the same reason I don’t have the right to steal your kidneys even if my life depends on it (and even if you caused that fact, by e.g. drunk-driving right into me and sending me to the hospital)

    - – - – - -

    So Silverman merely pointed out that secular arguments against abortion exist. I had the temerity to suggest what one of them might be, without defending it (and then the SIWOTI to address a few of the stupider responses to me).

    oh shut the fuck up chas. it’s already been explained multiple times why “merely pointed out that secular arguments against abortion exist” is bullshit. in short: with the comment on abortion being more of a gray area, he made it clear that there are secular arguments against abortion that are more serious than the secular arguments against assisted suicide and gay marriage.

    But keep on fucking lying to us and to yourself about what you’re doing here.

  201. Valde says

    @antepepro

    I am using the stats you provided me with for childbirth side effects on that TFA thread. Thanks. A fella just said that pregnancy does not harm women because the human race would have gone extinct if it did.

    /facepalm

  202. says

    the discussion about fetal autonomy is a bit of a red herring. the rules for how self-defense works generally state that there’s an initial aggressor and a defender. It’s not possible for the pregnant person to be the initial aggressor.

  203. says

    valde

    A fella just said that pregnancy does not harm women because the human race would have gone extinct if it did.

    The stupid, it burns
    Is that person aware that there are species were both parents usually don’t survive procreation?

  204. says

    Since apparently Hermant now decided to give “equal time” to secular “arguments” for bigotry, I hope he invites some stormfronters next to talk about secular arguments for “racial realism”; and some secular homophobes to discuss how icky and unnatural Teh Ghey Sex is. [/extreme cynicism]

  205. anteprepro says

    Musing: I just realized that it’s been almost five years now since I last regularly visited The Friendly Atheist.

    I am using the stats you provided me with for childbirth side effects on that TFA thread.

    Sweet! Glad I can help!

    A fella just said that pregnancy does not harm women because the human race would have gone extinct if it did.

    Circumcision doesn’t harm men, because if it did, there would be no children from Jewish fathers.

  206. says

    Valde:

    A fella just said that pregnancy does not harm women because the human race would have gone extinct if it did.

    Fella seems blissfully unaware of a history with extremely high percentages of women dying during/after childbirth and infant mortality. Still going on in too many places in the world. The more educated women are, and the more access they have to contraception, the fewer children they have. I expect Fella has never thought about that at all.

  207. says

    the discussion about fetal autonomy is a bit of a red herring. the rules for how self-defense works generally state that there’s an initial aggressor and a defender. It’s not possible for the pregnant person to be the initial aggressor.

    Indeed. The situation is that the fetus has attached itself to the woman and is using her body as a life support system. The abortion isn’t an act of aggression because it’s a response to a situation where the fetus is already engaged in a non-consensual imposition on the woman’s body.

    There’s a self-defense argument here, but it’s for abortion rights.

  208. Valde says

    The situation is that the fetus has attached itself to the woman and is using her body as a life support system. The abortion isn’t an act of aggression because it’s a response to a situation where the fetus is already engaged in a non-consensual imposition on the woman’s body.

    Very well said. However, anti-abortionists frame it as if the woman committed an act of aggression by choosing to have sex. Which is why I ask them if you should be forced to donate your body to someone that you have injured in a car accident. They say well, only if you’re drunk driving! I say so…female sexuality is the moral equivalent of drunk driving?

    Yep, that’s how they see it.

  209. ChasCPeterson says

    with the comment on abortion being more of a gray area, he made it clear that there are secular arguments against abortion that are more serious than the secular arguments against assisted suicide and gay marriage.

    wtf? Did you see the poll results posted on the other Silverman thread? Those support the “less clear cut” comment (“gray area” are your words) without any need to impart implications of “seriousness” of the arguments.

    But keep on fucking lying to us and to yourself about what you’re doing here.

    bizarre.
    Get your mind-reader checked.

  210. says

    Valde:

    Abortion threads are clickbait. Which is why every blog has one every few months.

    Oh yes, it’s done solely for the hits. Why it’s not as if it’s a serious issue for women, whether they are going to be treated as full humans or not, and of course, no one gives a crap about seeing the sort of shit going down in places like where I live. Nope. Just a matter of hits.

  211. ChasCPeterson says

    And wait a minute: When Silverman said that secular arguments against abortion are not as clear cut as secular arguments about school prayer, right to die, and gay marriage, he’s essentially saying that the abortion argument is less “serious.

    I sincerely can’t believe the way that certain issues interfere with people’s abilities to read for comprehension and think clearly. It’s fascinating.

  212. chris61 says

    I find it curious that people frame abortion rights in terms of self defense and removal of an aggressor. Nobody justifies treating cancer this way. It would seem pretty silly because a tumor has no more capacity for agency or intent than a fetus does. So why is anyone supposed to consider this a serious argument to justify abortion rights?

  213. says

    Ok, so I took a look Chas’ example of someone who thinks they have secular arguments against abortion.
    My comment.

    In the end, nothing has changed. This so-called secular argument against abortion is no more valid than religious arguments against abortion. As I said earlier, it is predicated on denying women the rights they possess as human beings.

  214. David Marjanović says

    bizarre.
    Get your mind-reader checked.

    Well, you’re really easy to misinterpret, Chas, and there are things you’ve never thought through either. I’ll leave a long comment in the [Thunderdome] later this week – no time lately, and my spoons are going into a grant proposal.

    I sincerely can’t believe the way that certain issues interfere with people’s abilities to read for comprehension and think clearly. It’s fascinating.

    Fascinating?

    Being triggered interferes with all kinds of things. You keep underestimating how much shit so many people here have been through, and what it does to them.

  215. Valde says

    I find it curious that people frame abortion rights in terms of self defense and removal of an aggressor. Nobody justifies treating cancer this way. It would seem pretty silly because a tumor has no more capacity for agency or intent than a fetus does. So why is anyone supposed to consider this a serious argument to justify abortion rights?

    Wot.

  216. David Marjanović says

    My comment.

    Could you please link directly to the comment? (The URL is in the timestamp.) There are 670 comments on that thread, and according to Ctrl+F there’s no “tony” on the first page.

  217. says

    I find it curious that people frame abortion rights in terms of self defense and removal of an aggressor. Nobody justifies treating cancer this way.

    Only because we don’t have people going around seriously proposing that cancers shouldn’t be treated because of the cancer’s right to life.

    If the fetus is a human, then abortion is justified because the fetus imposes upon the bodily rights of the woman. If the fetus isn’t human, then abortion is also justified because non-human parasites don’t have rights.

    You’re the one arguing that the fetus is human, so why are you suddenly surprised that we take that into account when we respond?

  218. says

    chris61:

    I find it curious that people frame abortion rights in terms of self defense and removal of an aggressor. Nobody justifies treating cancer this way. It would seem pretty silly because a tumor has no more capacity for agency or intent than a fetus does. So why is anyone supposed to consider this a serious argument to justify abortion rights?

    FFS!
    It’s because assclams like you treat fetuses as if they have the full range of human rights. One of the many “arguments” against abortion is that fetuses are persons. I know it’s hard for you to follow through on logical implications, so take my hand and we’ll walk through it:

    If we grant that fetuses are persons, then this person is within the body of a woman and presents a clear threat to her health. Therefore, abortion is an act of self-defense.
    I hope I don’t need to explain to you all the ways that pregnancy harms women. It’s been done more than once in this very thread.

  219. says

    @662 Inaji

    You said:

    “Congratulations, you don’t know what bodily autonomy means! We are not talking about people breaking the law and encountering consequences here.”

    In my understanding, bodily autonomy refers to a person being able to do what they want with their body, without facing legal consequences; perhaps in context there is an implied “as long as you harm another” which would undermine only my first example not the rest. Are we not discussing whether abortion should be legal? Quite obviously a woman always has the (bodily, formal) autonomy to receive an abortion. The question, then as always, becomes whether the law should respect that bodily autonomy or curtail it in light of competing values.

    Given that I was using bodily autonomy to refer to the board category of “having control your body and having that control respected” every single example I gave does in fact restrict bodily autonomy in that ways in which a person may use their body face legal pressure and penalties for them if they do use it in those way. Now perhaps you meant something more robust, but as I was reading the thread that seemed to be the general concept being picked out. I’m at a complete lost to explain why a woman’s bodily autonomy is completely beyond reproach in the context of abortion, but we can be curtailed in numerous other ways, i.e. voluntary sex “slavery” contracts.

    You said:

    “I would like a list, please, of all the specific bodily restrictions put on men, where they are not allowed to make specific medical decisions for themselves, or have specific physical conditions subject to legislation, wherein a male person would be forced to do something they do not wish to do, such as carry a pregnancy to term and give birth. ”

    I gave you a few above, but here is a couple of more: Men can not castrate themselves and sell the their testes on the market. Men (people generally) can’t have of their organs removed and sell them. Men, if they commit a crime, are required to be in jail/work for the state. Sex offenders, in some contexts, are required to undergo medical treatment and/or trade chemical castration for an earlier release. Men can not have a doctor kill them if they don’t have a terminal disease. Men cannot sell his life to a person who wishes to kill another for pleasure.

    But beyond this, I do not see why medical decisions (generally) should always be considered beyond reproach for anyone (men or women) because bodily autonomy in light of the numerous ways we, do and should, regulate bodily decisions.

    you said:

    “Or, please list for me all the ways in which male people are denied the contraception of their choice. ”

    I happen to think all laws regulating contraception (including Plan B) are generally unjust and should be removed. Furthermore, I think it is prudent to remove any barriers that women (especially) and men have to contraception of their choice.

    I am not pro-life, let along anti-contraception.

    @663 Luke X

    You said:

    ” 1)Are you seriously telling me that you think telling someone to turn the music down is a restriction anywhere near the level of telling them they have to carry another organism within their body?

    2) I also note that several of your points relate to property, which isn’t a part of your body. Seriously, are we going to have to draw a chart, here?”

    1) Of course not. But the argument for abortion at any point is most strongly argued for in terms of bodily autonomy. This argument requires that the women’s autonomy is such that you can never override it for any reason. If you move down to saying the women’s autonomy is worth more than the (possible) person, you give up the the stronger claim and we can then haggle over the relative merits of the conflicting rights. Until such a time any sort of discussion between a person with my position and the general mood of this thread is going to be at odds as I simply don’t accept the general claim that bodily autonomy can never be overridden (not just in abortion but in a lot of cases). I see the argument as basically questions: 1) when does bodily autonomy (generally) warrant curtailing because of other competing values? and 2) when does a fetus warrant more consideration than the mother’s claims?

    The problem, for me, is if you accept that in the case of abortion, bodily autonomy rights are absolute I see no way of chopping those off in any other cases, especially given the stakes of the argument in abortion.

    2) I’m well are that there is a difference between your body and your property. I am, however, confused by how one can generate such strong bodily rights without necessarily entailing extremely strong property rights in the products of your labor. Now, I guess, we can haggle about how one separate those two claims cogently, but I have never seen a convincing argument. I think it does pretty much follow that if you have absolute control over your body, you have absolute control over the value generated by your efforts. (side note: I’m also deeply suspicious of the alleged difference between bodily autonomy and the so-called autonomy of action. It’s a fuzzy line.)

    @671 ajb47

    You said:

    “If we can force a woman to use her body for the fetus, why can’t we force people to donate a kidney or a lung, or half a liver? ”

    I’m sorry, but were we only taking about cases of women who were raped or are unaware of the biological nature of pregnancy? Pregnancy is known possible outcome if you have Penis-in-virgin sex, you consent to the risk of getting pregnant. (this topic has been covered before obviously, but whatever, I’m saying my peace) As such I don’t see the analogy of the two cases. A person who forcibly removes my liver is not the same thing as my contracting HIV if I have unprotected sex in terms of me being forced to endure something as in the first case there is nothing even approaching consent. In the second case I knowingly and willing take a chance of contracting HIV, and in that sense that I knew of the risk and thought the sex was worth the trade-off, I agreed to that outcome. I fail to see how the case of pregnancy is relevantly different from this. Again note, I’m a pro-choice-with-fewer-choices person. So I have no problem at all with a woman getting an abortion at any point before, for the sake of argument, the start of third trimester (or viability). If a women truly doesn’t want to be pregnant for the full term, she has two chances to avoid doing so, A) not have PiV sex, or B) get an abortion sometimes before 7 months in, as most women in fact do.

    @670
    You said:
    “Given that your status as an actual person doesn’t override anyone else’s bodily autonomy, you’re going to need a much stronger case than you’ve made so far that possible personhood does.”

    I expressed my view badly on this point. I think a fetus is a person after the point of viability because most of the relevant criteria (, feels pains, has brain waves, can exist semi-independently etc.) are present at that time, to some degree. My (possible) wasn’t in reference to me thinking the fetus is possibly a person, but that my understanding of personhood is wrong. We can, of course haggle over this. I think personhood of the fetus at this point overrides the mother’s autonomy (except for life/death cases) because:

    1) persons are of extreme moral importance, as much as possible you should directly harm them. (i.e. cause them pain)

    2) an abortion or a botched force birth causes the fetus undue pain and suffering, which harms them. Denying a women an abortion at this point is not directly harming her…the cause of the suffering is the pregnancy itself, not anything any one did that she did not consent to

    3) the woman, except in cases of rape/incest, consented to the risk of pregnancy and this create a not-quite-consent situation that lowers the respect for the women’s autonomy.

    you said:

    You make some vague slippery slope allusion about how late term abortion leads to ‘unacceptable’ things (like what?)

    As I have stated above, I think if we accept absolute bodily autonomy in terms of abortion, then there is no way to prevent things like allowing voluntary “slave” contracts. My problem isn’t that I think late term abortion, in of itself*, causes a slippery slope for other worrying positions, my problem is if we accept that understanding of bodily autonomy here we have to accept it everywhere.

    I’m well aware that late term abortions are a) very, very rare, b) almost always done for the life/health of the mother, c) the fetus isn’t viable anyway in most cases and c) not what activist pro-life people want to settle for. They instead what to out law abortion completely. To which, I must say I find the no-abortion-ever position more troublesome and abhorrent than the abortion at any time one.

    *if you argue abortion is always ok because a fetus never has any aspect of personhood, that would be a different argument, but weak in other ways.

    I jumped into this thread because of being a pro-choice-with-fewer-choices person I thought it worthwhile to respond to some arguments that I kept cropping up.

    You said:

    “TL;DR: You’re a disingenuous fuckweasel who needs to shut your ignorant noise hole and read the fucking thread.”

    I actually did. I’m also semi-well versed in the debate given my academic background.

    Anyway, my TL:DR there’s a lot of people in this thread are who are forwarding a broadly evictionist position in regards to abortion at any point. This is hysterical as that position is mostly found in libertarian principles and circles.

    This is doubly funny in that I’m already been called a “liberturdian” despite not being a libertarian.

  220. anteprepro says

    chris is still being a fuckwit.

    Chas is still being a self-absorbed douche.

    Hooray!

  221. A. Noyd says

    chris61 (#741)

    Nobody justifies treating cancer this way.

    Nobody has to because nobody stands up for the rights of the cancer to keep invading someone’s body. And yet, we do talk about cancer in terms of its aggressiveness and removing it for the sake of survival.

  222. says

    wtf? Did you see the poll results posted on the other Silverman thread? Those support the “less clear cut” comment (“gray area” are your words) without any need to impart implications of “seriousness” of the arguments.

    1)this is utterly irrelevant to my point about the meaning of “argument”
    2)”gray area” are Silverman’s words, no mine. That he used them is evidence that he didn’t mean “there are shitty arguments”.
    3)what the fuck do numbers of people believing something have to do with whether there’s an “argument” (defined as something different than the secular “arguments” against gay marriage, to stick to Silverman’s usage)?

    like I said. keep on telling yourself you’re being the reasonable one here. it’s not true, but keep on telling yourself that.

  223. says

    @chris61
    Wait, I get it. You want to have it both ways. When we’re discussing what happens to the fetus, it’s human. When we’re discussing what the fetus does to the mother, suddenly it’s just a mindless lump of flesh.

    Not acceptable. Agency isn’t a relevant distinction because we accept that people have a right to defend themselves, even from unintended attacks. If I’m hallucinating and don’t realize that I’m swinging a knife in your face, that doesn’t mean you don’t have a right to defend yourself.

    The important thing is the fetus’ effect on the mother and the way in which its presence imposes on her body. Intent doesn’t enter into it. In fact, the lack of intent is exactly why a forcible removal of the fetus is the only way to deal with it.

  224. says

    I missed type a couple of sentences.

    first:

    this “perhaps in context there is an implied “as long as you harm another”” should read “perhaps in context there is an implied “as long as you don’t harm another.”

    second:

    “persons are of extreme moral importance, as much as possible you should directly harm them. (i.e. cause them pain)” should be “persons are of extreme moral importance, as much as possible you should not directly harm them. (i.e. cause them pain)”

  225. says

    more idiocy from michael @748:

    Pregnancy is known possible outcome if you have Penis-in-virgin sex, you consent to the risk of getting pregnant.

    Consent to sex does NOT mean consent to pregnancy.
    Even if it did, women have the right to withdraw consent at any point they choose. Unless you believe that women do not have the right to make decisions concerning their own bodies. In which case, fuck off.

  226. says

    @755 Tony
    Read the goddamn thread!
    Everything you’ve said has been dealt with exhaustively.

    I need a fucking drink.

    I AM aware of this, the points I made are always exhaustively dealt with. Abortion is probably the most rehashed topic ever. I have not found the arguments convincing. I, at this point, am not willing to give up the cause.

  227. says

    This:

    persons are of extreme moral importance, as much as possible you should not directly harm them.

    is an argument FOR abortion rights.
    It is well within the realm of possibility to end the harm done to a woman’s body by a fetus.
    It’s called abortion.

  228. anteprepro says

    And speaking of fuckwits and douches

    I gave you a few above, but here is a couple of more: Men can not castrate themselves and sell the their testes on the market. Men (people generally) can’t have of their organs removed and sell them. Men, if they commit a crime, are required to be in jail/work for the state. Sex offenders, in some contexts, are required to undergo medical treatment and/or trade chemical castration for an earlier release. Men can not have a doctor kill them if they don’t have a terminal disease. Men cannot sell his life to a person who wishes to kill another for pleasure.

    Selling testes is not bodily autonomy. Selling organs is not bodily autonomy. Imprisonment is not bodily autonomy (just regular autonomy). Forcible chemical castration is rare and already objected to as a cruel and unusual punishment. Right to die affects both genders and blocking is also something a lot of liberals oppose. And again with the obsession of what one can buy and sell.

    Mission failed. Try again.

    Pregnancy is known possible outcome if you have Penis-in-virgin sex, you consent to the risk of getting pregnant. (this topic has been covered before obviously, but whatever, I’m saying my peace)

    *eye roll*
    Just like if you drive a car, you consent to car accidents.

    Go fuck yourself.

    there’s a lot of people in this thread are who are forwarding a broadly evictionist position in regards to abortion at any point. This is hysterical as that position is mostly found in libertarian principles and circles.

    Sometimes you have to talk to clueless, disingenuous fuckwits in their own language. In order to make it obvious that they DO understand you, they just don’t want to.

  229. says

    @tony 758

    “Consent to sex does NOT mean consent to pregnancy.”

    ?? I’m at loss to explain what this has to do with the point I made. I went out of my way to denote the thing I was talking about as risk, and the concept as not-quite-consent.

    “Even if it did, women have the right to withdraw consent at any point they choose. ”

    But of course, however engaging in an activity that carries a known risk obviously should play into to decision-making process and it does make the question more complicated. A woman does agree to the risk of pregnancy if she has PiV sex, and it seems suspect to me to say that is analogous to a person forcible removing my liver when she later aborts. It’s not quite consent, but it’s not quite forced either.

    Regardless, there are time when people (generally) can not revoke consent once give, i.e. breach of contract.

  230. says

    michael kellymiecielica #736

    A woman does agree to the risk of pregnancy if she has PiV sex,

    “Sorry, we have reason to believe that your broken arm is the result of voluntary activity, to whit climbing a tree. Under these circumstances, we are obliged to tell you that you must live with the consequences of your decision. Treatment denied.”

    Regardless, there are time when people (generally) can not revoke consent once give, i.e. breach of contract.

    When you find me a foetus which has been given a signed contract, we can re-examine this analogy.

  231. ajb47 says

    michael kellymiecielica @748

    I’m sorry, but were we only taking about cases of women who were raped or are unaware of the biological nature of pregnancy? Pregnancy is known possible outcome if you have Penis-in-virgin sex, you consent to the risk of getting pregnant. (this topic has been covered before obviously, but whatever, I’m saying my peace)

    So women should be punished for being slutty-slut-sluts? Glad we cleared that up.

    As such I don’t see the analogy of the two cases. A person who forcibly removes my liver is not the same thing as my contracting HIV if I have unprotected sex in terms of me being forced to endure something as in the first case there is nothing even approaching consent. In the second case I knowingly and willing take a chance of contracting HIV, and in that sense that I knew of the risk and thought the sex was worth the trade-off, I agreed to that outcome. I fail to see how the case of pregnancy is relevantly different from this.

    Wow. You can’t see the similarity between “A person who forcibly removes my liver…there is nothing even approaching consent” and “A person who forcibly makes me remain pregnant… there is nothing even approaching consent”? Or is this just another way of saying women should be punished for being slutty-slut-sluts?

    Again note, I’m a pro-choice-with-fewer-choices person. So I have no problem at all with a woman getting an abortion at any point before, for the sake of argument, the start of third trimester (or viability). If a women truly doesn’t want to be pregnant for the full term, she has two chances to avoid doing so, A) not have PiV sex, or B) get an abortion sometimes before 7 months in, as most women in fact do.

    So the woman has rights until she doesn’t? And she loses these rights with respect to the fetus as a special case why?

  232. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    But beyond this, I do not see why medical decisions (generally) should always be considered beyond reproach for anyone (men or women) because bodily autonomy in light of the numerous ways we, do and should, regulate bodily decisions.

    None of your examples equals a pregnant woman bringing a baby to term. And your prisoner fuckwittery is exactly that. You haven’t present any real example, and you probably can’t, and you know that. So you make up shit from a liberturdian perspective….

  233. says

    When Silverman said that secular arguments against abortion are not as clear cut as secular arguments about school prayer, right to die, and gay marriage, he’s essentially saying that the abortion argument is less “serious.

    are your really that fucking dense? or are you arguing in complete ignorance of what Silverman actually said (which is that there all arguments against right to die and gay marriage are religious, but abortion is a “gray area”)?

    It’s absolutely impossible to interpret the following as meaning that there are stronger secular arguments against gay marriage than against abortion:

    “I came with the message that Christianity and conservatism are not inextricably linked,” he told me, “and that social conservatives are holding down the real conservatives — social conservatism isn’t real conservatism, it’s actually big government, it’s theocracy. I’m talking about gay rights, right to die, abortion rights –”

    Hold on, I said, I think the Right to Life guys who have a booth here, and have had every year since CPAC started, would disagree that they’re not real conservatives.

    “I will admit there is a secular argument against abortion,” said Silverman. “You can’t deny that it’s there, and it’s maybe not as clean cut as school prayer, right to die, and gay marriage.”

    so he starts by saying opposition to gay rights, right to die, and abortion are “theocracy” and not “real conservatism”, and then he backtracks on abortion and says that there’s a secular argument and it’s not as “clear cut” (you’re right “gray area” was mine; I think I got it from an interview Silverman gave about the CPAC appearance, but I can’t find it now so let’s say it’s my words). this cannot mean he thinks there anti-gay-marriage secular arguments; it means he doesn’t think there are, which means he cannot be using “secular argument” in the sense of “some people are against this even without using religion”.
    Hell, he even repeated this assessment elsewhere when he said he meant to say:

    He clearly knew he was right, and so did I – there is a secular argument (one with which I firmly disagree) whose existence I cannot deny.

    Rather than take the road to discussing abortion, I acquiesced to his correct counterpoint, returned to my point, and said that school prayer, LGBT equality, and Death with dignity were better examples of purely Christian positions

    secular anti-assisted-suicide and secular anti-gay arguments don’t exist in Silverman’s mind, so either he’s ignorant as all hell, or he isn’t using “argument” to mean “someone said something”.

  234. says

    Something else the forced birth camp hasn’t explained:
    Even if we grant fetuses the rights to life and to override the wishes of the pregnant woman, why does the fetus lose that right upon birth?

    In other words, this extra special right granted to fetuses vanishes upon birth. Why?

  235. says

    in other words: you’re fucking making it up that Silverman said that secular arguments against abortion are “less clear cut” than secular arguments against gay marriage. He clearly said that anti-gay-marriage arguments are “theocracy”, but abortion is less clear cut.

    Jesus fuck.

  236. carlie says

    I wasn’t saying you want to have sex with women – I was saying it was a pretty funny messup, for values of “funny” that include “women are either virgins or whores, and once they switch from one to the other they deserve the punishment of pregnancy and childbirth”.

  237. says

    @ antreprepore

    two things on my first point you responded to. First, do you think it should be legal for a healthy person of sound mind and judgment to request to be euthanized and have that request honored? This is not the standard right to die case obviously and being sick can change it. I don’t think that should be allowed. That is currently not allowed any where, and I highly doubt it ever will be. But regardless, I don’t see how that can be denied if we assent to bodily autonomy required for abortion-at-any-point.

    Second, my obsession about buying and selling things, as I said above, is a I don’t buy the distinction between bodily autonomy and autonomy of action and as such I, as I defined above, understand “using my body in anyway I want to.” This should include selling and buying body parts. Now you can avoid the example by either: a) providing a reason to split bodily autonomy and autonomy of action, or b) giving up absolute bodily autonomy.

    Second, why yes if I drive a car I do consent to taking on the risk of car crashes. In fact I don’t drive because, me being a terrible driver, I don’t consider the risk of a car accident worth driving for. I also blatantly stated above that if I get HIV from unprotected sex however we want to cash this out I still consented to the risk of getting HIV. I’m not sure why this is controversial.

    Finally, I’m arguing against the evictionist position. why? because I’m not a libertarian.

  238. says

    LykeX @ 753:

    When we’re discussing what the fetus does to the mother

    Could we please stop this bullshit? (See # 696)

  239. anteprepro says

    “Hello sir. Sorry to see that you already turning blue. I was informed that you were choking. I know this is a very much an inconvenient state of affairs, but I’m afraid that neither the restaurant nor anyone at any of the tables can do anything about it. You see, you consented to the risk of choking when you decided to eat a steak. So I would love to use the Heimlich maneuver to clear your obstructed airway, but I’m afraid you had already agreed to the risk of choking and I can’t in conscience terminate that contract before it has been fulfilled, to completion. My sincerest apologies. I will send a coupon to your widow.”

  240. says

    @ tony.

    calie’s point is, or so I take it to be, I don’t consider women people as I don’t hold to the evictionist line, and I somehow revealed this when I mistyped vagina as virgin because obviously I must only think as women as devices to gratify my sexual lust. virgin-whore stereotype

    Naturally this is undercut by me not having any lust for women. Sometimes a typo is just a typo.

  241. says

    michael kellymiecielica #777

    First, do you think it should be legal for a healthy person of sound mind and judgment to request to be euthanized and have that request honored? This is not the standard right to die case obviously

    Wut? That is exactly the standard right to die case.

  242. says

    Pregnancy is known possible outcome if you have Penis-in-virgin sex, you consent to the risk of getting pregnant.

    Oh, those rascally virgins!

    Anyway, Cupcake, consent to sex is NOT consent to getting pregnant. Now I know you didn’t read the thread, because Maureen O’Brien posted a court case in Canada, where a woman consented to sex as long as she did not get pregnant. The man in question sabotaged the condoms. He was found guilty of sexual assault, and the supreme court upheld that ruling. So, try again, but not too much, your fail rate is spectacular.

    Also, on the penis/vagina intercourse front, are you even aware of people who happily made the choice to be sterile? I’m one of those people, so it’s inaccurate, to say the least, that it’s an automatic risk for everyone who indulges in the oh-so-great crime of penis/vagina fuckin’.

  243. says

    michael:

    First, do you think it should be legal for a healthy person of sound mind and judgment to request to be euthanized and have that request honored?

    Yes.
    Do you have any other asinine questions to ask?
    Also, I don’t want to wander off topic, so perhaps you could come to the Thunderdome and explain your [I'm sure] well reasoned justification for infringing on the bodily autonomy of all human beings in case of euthanasia.

  244. anteprepro says

    First, do you think it should be legal for a healthy person of sound mind and judgment to request to be euthanized and have that request honored?

    Yes.

    I don’t think that should be allowed.

    I would ask why, but I don’t give a shit. It’s just an excuse for you to go off topic.

    Second, my obsession about buying and selling things, as I said above, is a I don’t buy the distinction between bodily autonomy and autonomy of action

    If you don’t see the distinction between being allowed to do what you want TO your body, and being allowed to do what you want WITH your body, affecting ANY and EVERY thing else, are the SAME question, then you are far more fuckwitted than I could have imagined.

  245. says

    Anteprepro:

    “Hello sir. Sorry to see that you already turning blue. I was informed that you were choking. I know this is a very much an inconvenient state of affairs, but I’m afraid that neither the restaurant nor anyone at any of the tables can do anything about it. You see, you consented to the risk of choking when you decided to eat a steak. So I would love to use the Heimlich maneuver to clear your obstructed airway, but I’m afraid you had already agreed to the risk of choking and I can’t in conscience terminate that contract before it has been fulfilled, to completion. My sincerest apologies. I will send a coupon to your widow.”

    Quoting, with emphasis, for the hard of thinking.

  246. ajb47 says

    Also, just so it’s clear, I am going to repeat what Tony posted at 608 (it was actually to chris61, I think, but there still seems to be a misunderstanding):

    As I’ve already noted, I don’t think you understand the concept of bodily autonomy, nor its importance.

    Bodily integrity is the inviolability of the physical body and emphasises the importance of personal autonomy and the self-determination of human beings over their own bodies. It considers the violation of bodily integrity as an unethical infringement, intrusive, and possibly criminal.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bodily_integrity

    The right to bodily autonomy/bodily integrity/right to self-determination *includes* a woman’s right to full control over her body.
    The right to bodily autonomy does not mean:
    Women possess the right to full control over their bodies, except at some point during their pregnancy
    It means:
    Women possess the right to full control over their bodies-with no exceptions.

    I don’t know, maybe it will take this time.

  247. says

    @anteprepro.

    My point isn’t the women consenting to the risk of pregnancy removes all bodily autonomy, that only it muddles the issue enough that it factors into the consideration. In the choking parody, setting aside life of the patron, if the food somehow magicked subjective conscious-states but only when in the choked position it would be a interesting question if you could remove it. The person did consent to the risk of choking.

    I could be convinced that viability does not confer personhood onto a fetus, and in which case I would no longer have any qualms about abortion-at-any-time.

  248. says

    First, do you think it should be legal for a healthy person of sound mind and judgment to request to be euthanized and have that request honored?

    Yes. In case it hasn’t dawned on you, what someone of sound mind and judgement decides to do is none of your fucking business.

  249. says

    I find it curious that people frame abortion rights in terms of self defense and removal of an aggressor. Nobody justifies treating cancer this way.

    if there were people insisting that cancers had a right to life that overrides the right to autonomy of their victim, that’s exactly how people would frame it.

    You’ve now basically reached the “if atheists don’t believe in God, why do they keep on talking about him so much”? stage of trying to defend your bullshit.

    - – - – - – - -

    bodily autonomy refers to a person being able to do what they want with their body, without facing legal consequences

    this is false. it’s about what happens TO your body, not what you do WITH your body.

    I’m at a complete lost to explain why a woman’s bodily autonomy is completely beyond reproach in the context of abortion, but we can be curtailed in numerous other ways, i.e. voluntary sex “slavery” contracts.

    once again: none of your examples are of curtailment of bodily autonomy, and sex “slave” relationships are entirely legal as long as they’re consensual, meaning as long as they don’t interfere with anyone’s bodily autonomy.

    Men can not castrate themselves and sell the their testes on the market.

    you can absolutely castrate yourself. Plenty of examples of people with that extreme body mod.selling is not an issue of bodily autonomy.

    Men, if they commit a crime, are required to be in jail/work for the state.

    which is not an issue of bodily autonomy unless they’re physically abused in jail.

    Sex offenders, in some contexts, are required to undergo medical treatment and/or trade chemical castration

    this is a valid example; of abuse of bodily autonomy that needs to end. Forced sterilization/castration is a violation of human rights.

    Men can not have a doctor kill them if they don’t have a terminal disease.

    neither can women, so not a valid example. Aside from that, introducing another person into your suicide has to do with the ethics of that second person; suicide isn’t illegal and shouldn’t be.

    Men cannot sell his life to a person who wishes to kill another for pleasure.

    neither can women so not a valid example.

    I’m sorry, but were we only taking about cases of women who were raped or are unaware of the biological nature of pregnancy? Pregnancy is known possible outcome if you have Penis-in-virgin sex, you consent to the risk of getting pregnant.

    and now we’re back to pregnancy being a punishment for sex. And it’s a claim I’ve already refuted; you can’t take the organs of people who drove drunk either, even though causing a serious accident is a well-known possible consequence of drunk driving. Saying that consent to sex is consent to pregnancy is treating sexuality as an offense worse than drunk driving.

    If a women truly doesn’t want to be pregnant for the full term, she has two chances to avoid doing so, A) not have PiV sex, or B) get an abortion sometimes before 7 months in, as most women in fact do.

    translates in effect to “if you’re poor or rural, you must be punished for sex”

    I think a fetus is a person after the point of viability because most of the relevant criteria (, feels pains, has brain waves, can exist semi-independently etc.)

    the fetal pain argument is counterfactual; and a person exists independently (physically speaking), not semi-independently.

    Denying a women an abortion at this point is not directly harming her…the cause of the suffering is the pregnancy itself, not anything any one did that she did not consent to

    that’s amazingly nonsensical. the pregnancy absolutely is something the fetus is doing to the woman.

    the woman, except in cases of rape/incest, consented to the risk of pregnancy and this create a not-quite-consent situation that lowers the respect for the women’s autonomy.

    this is the “wore a short skirt and got drunk” argument for implied consent. consent doesn’t work that way; it’s always specific, non-extendable, and withdrawable at any moment.

  250. says

    michael kellymiecielica #788

    In the choking parody, setting aside life of the patron, if the food somehow magicked subjective conscious-states but only when in the choked position it would be a interesting question if you could remove it. The person did consent to the risk of choking.

    WTF is this, Salvador Dali Paints Morals?

    I could be convinced that viability does not confer personhood onto a fetus, and in which case I would no longer have any qualms about abortion-at-any-time.

    Except in cases of medical emergency, post-viabilty “abortion” is what we commonly know as “birth.”

    Fuxake.

  251. nich says

    @783:

    Anyway, Cupcake, consent to sex is NOT consent to getting pregnant.

    I think it was mentioned earlier in the thread that driving is consenting to the risk of getting into an accident. The difference is, if the worst happens and I get into a wreck, I can take my cracked up vehicle to the mechanic or buy a new car. The woman is being told she has to drive that hobbled piece of shit around for nine months before anything can be done about it.

  252. says

    @injani

    “Anyway, Cupcake, consent to sex is NOT consent to getting pregnant. Now I know you didn’t read the thread, because Maureen O’Brien posted a court case in Canada, where a woman consented to sex as long as she did not get pregnant. The man in question sabotaged the condoms. He was found guilty of sexual assault, and the supreme court upheld that ruling. So, try again, but not too much, your fail rate is spectacular. ”

    The woman in question entered sexual congress under false pretenses (i.e. they would use non-sabotaged condoms), the guy did not inform her that he sabotaged the condoms. Ergo, she didn’t know all the risks entailed in the sexual congress, therefore she did not consent. hence why the sexual assault charge stuck as it should have.

    This disproves me how?

  253. says

    “and now we’re back to pregnancy being a punishment for sex. And it’s a claim I’ve already refuted; you can’t take the organs of people who drove drunk either, even though causing a serious accident is a well-known possible consequence of drunk driving. Saying that consent to sex is consent to pregnancy is treating sexuality as an offense worse than drunk driving.”

    It is not a known risk of drunk driving that your organs will be harvested.

  254. nich says

    It is not a known risk of drunk driving that your organs will be harvested.

    Because society has deemed it so, brainiac.

  255. opposablethumbs says

    Why doesn’t a fetus have the right to use its mother body for gestation? Its life depends on it.

    Chris61 @691, you don’t have the right to demand my blood or kidney and take it by force, even if your life depends on it. Even if I personally caused you to become anaemic or caused you to have kidney damage. Hell, even my own children don’t have that right (though in their case I might well choose to undergo even a painful or harmful donation process. Note the choose). Why should a foetus have MORE rights than you or my children? And this has already been made clear a dozen times in this thread alone, ffs. You can’t be bothered to fucking read, can you.

  256. says

    It is not a known risk of drunk driving that your organs will be harvested.

    nor is it a known risk of sex that you will be forced to continue being pregnant against your will.

  257. says

    “explain your [I'm sure] well reasoned justification for infringing on the bodily autonomy of all human beings in case of euthanasia”

    Briefly, I don’t think it is either possible to be of sound mind and judgment and healthy and want to kill yourself, or even if this is possible I don’t think it is knowable that a healthy person requesting euthanasia is, as fact, of sound mind and judgment.

    Now the way I asked the question that may be a bit of a dodge, but in the end there’s also I don’t think you can not rationally will (act autonomously) by deciding to end your autonomy.

  258. Valde says

    The woman in question entered sexual congress under false pretenses (i.e. they would use non-sabotaged condoms), the guy did not inform her that he sabotaged the condoms. Ergo, she didn’t know all the risks entailed in the sexual congress, therefore she did not consent. hence why the sexual assault charge stuck as it should have.

    So kindly tell us which women deserve abortions and which do not:

    1) victims of rape

    2) victims of sexual coerction (poked condoms)

    3) women who have chosen to have sex without using birth control

    4) women who had drunk sex

    5) women who used birth control and it failed because of user error

    6) women who used birth control perfectly, but it still failed because of breakthrough ovulation

    Tell us, please, which of these 6 women deserve to have an abortion.

  259. says

    Nich:

    The woman is being told she has to drive that hobbled piece of shit around for nine months before anything can be done about it.

    Oh, she doesn’t just get stuck with it for 9 months.

  260. says

    My point isn’t the women consenting to the risk of pregnancy removes all bodily autonomy, that only it muddles the issue enough that it factors into the consideration.

    When I consent to hetero sex, it means that I consent to sex. Inherent to sex is the risk that if I get pregnant, I have to choose whether to abort the pregnancy or carry it to term.

    How exactly is my bodily autonomy “muddled” by the fact that I accept the risk of having to decide what to do with a possible unwanted pregnancy?

    BTW, I don’t quite agree with Inaji’s framing on this (Hi Inaji! <3). If a fertile cis woman has hetero sex, there is a risk that she may become pregnant even if she makes an effort to avoid it. Any woman who has sex knowing of that risk can be said to have accepted the risk of becoming pregnant. That doesn’t mean that once she is pregnant, she has to accept being pregnant, because, hey, modern medicine, we don’t have to stay pregnant if we don’t want to. That’s what I believe Inaji means when she says that sex doesn’t mean consent to pregnancy–sex means accepting the risk of pregnancy, but not childbirth.

  261. says

    or to put it differently: neither in the case of drunk driving nor in the case of sex is losing your bodily autonomy an expected risk. what I’m talking about is the spurious claim that because people did something that’s well-known to sometimes cause a situation of dependency of another (severe injury in the case of drunk driving; pregnancy in the case of sex), they should have their bodily autonomy restricted for the benefit of that other.

  262. says

    “Because society has deemed it so, brainiac.”

    Well, then in the counterfactual case in which society has not deemed it so, and one can harvest organs of drunk driving people, then yes it is a known risk. I’m not even saying that this consideration by itself is decisive, but only it is in the mix.

    “nor is it a known risk of sex that you will be forced to continue being pregnant against your will.”

    So there are no late term abortion bans on the books anywhere? shocking.

  263. says

    My point isn’t the women consenting to the risk of pregnancy removes all bodily autonomy, that only it muddles the issue enough that it factors into the consideration.

    again with the “short skirt” argument for “muddled” right to bodily autonomy.

  264. Valde says

    Inaji wrote:

    Oh, she doesn’t just get stuck with it for 9 months.

    They always say that every single baby can be given up for adoption. Therefore, the 18 years and hundred thousand dollars it takes to raise a child is *not* punishment for having sex. But, only 2% of women ever decide to give their babies up for adoption. Because it’s really really fucking hard. Women get attached to the child they have birthed. So, essentially, forced birthers want to force an identity, and a new life, on a woman, for the crime of having sex.

  265. says

    SallyStrange:

    That’s what I believe Inaji means when she says that sex doesn’t mean consent to pregnancy–sex means accepting the risk of pregnancy, but not childbirth.

    Yes, and thank you for clarifying.

  266. anteprepro says

    Briefly, I don’t think it is either possible to be of sound mind and judgment and healthy and want to kill yourself

    So you don’t support the right to die because you have thoroughly stigmatized the idea in your own mind that you don’t know how anyone would want to without being mentally ill. Got it.

    I don’t think it is knowable that a healthy person requesting euthanasia is, as fact, of sound mind and judgment.

    You think it isn’t possible to judge if a person isn’t mentally and therefore oppose euthanasia, and yet aren’t using this heartfelt belief to rally against the idea that anyone can enter into legal contracts of any kind period. People join the military, join Congress, get gun licenses, get car licenses, get put into mental institutions and get taken out, all on the assumption that we can assess someone of sound mind and judgment. But suddenly it is a problem if that person just wants to die in peace. You are only free to endanger others, and free to put yourself at incredible risk of dying. However, you are not free to die. Welcome to America.

  267. says

    @799

    Umm? all of them? I’m pro-choice, even if I’m pro-choice-with-fewer-choices. I just think it is a) reasonable restriction to ban late term abortions, except in cases of the life of the mother, and c) the question is not entirely decided on the question of the woman’s bodily autonomy because no other question is.

  268. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I could be convinced that viability does not confer personhood onto a fetus, and in which case I would no longer have any qualms about abortion-at-any-time.

    Ass backwards, you must convince us you are right. evidence that the fetus is more of human being than the woman. or shut the fuck up.

  269. says

    Briefly, I don’t think it is either possible to be of sound mind and judgment and healthy and want to kill yourself

    that is actually not relevant. bodily autonomy means you get to kill yourself even when you’re not mentally healthy.

    but hey, at least you’re consistent with your belief that people should be abused in accordance with your squeamishness. [/sarc]

  270. says

    c) the question is not entirely decided on the question of the woman’s bodily autonomy because no other question is.

    this is not true.

  271. nich says

    Inaji@805:

    They always say that every single baby can be given up for adoption.

    It’s not just the child itself that can be the burden. You could, ya know, give up your life? What if it came out via caesarean? Not to mention little things like stretch marks. Hell, my SO, who otherwise had very uneventful pregnancies, cringes whenever my hands wander anywhere near the area of her epidural 10 years after the fact.

  272. says

    michael kellymiecielica #809

    a) reasonable restriction to ban late term abortions, except in cases of the life of the mother

    Again: Except in cases of medical emergency, post-viabilty “abortion” is what we commonly know as “birth.”

    and c) the question is not entirely decided on the question of the woman’s bodily autonomy because no other question is.

    (Where did ‘b’ go?)

    Name one other question in which bodily autonomy is ever denied in favour of the needs of another person.

  273. says

    or rather: “no other question” is untrue. it’s not true in cases where prejudice and squeamishness have finally been eliminated. bodily autonomy is unjustly restricted on the basis of prejudice and people feeling icky about other people’s rights all the time. but in cases where that has been rightly eliminated, a question concerning bodily autonomy tends to be decided on bodily autonomy exclusively.

  274. Amphiox says

    Even in paleolithic times there were plenty of known ways of terminating an unwanted pregnancy, which were routinely used. In fact it is likely that our lineage had and routinely used methods of terminating unwanted pregnancies even before we were H. sapiens. (There are in fact quite a number of species that have the physiologic ability to actively terminate pregnancies in times of metabolic stress. Kangaroos are even known to throw joeys out of the pouch if the female finds she does not have the physiological reserve to raise it successfully.)

    In other words, there was likely no time in our entire history as a sentient entity where the “natural” order was that pregnancy = no choice but to gestate the fetus all the way to birth.

    So when a woman consents to sexual intercourse, sure she consents to accept the risk of a potential unwanted pregnancy. But that does NOT mean, in any way shape or form, that she consents to being compelled to carry the pregnancy to term.

    The risk of an unwanted pregnancy means she must deal with the cost of *terminating* that pregnancy – ie the cost in resources, time, and health risk that is entailed in getting an abortion.

  275. says

    Briefly, I don’t think it is either possible to be of sound mind and judgment and healthy and want to kill yourself

    It’s just adorable how you utterly erase agency on the part of those who may have a mental illness. Just because a person does have a mental illness does not mean they are incapable of making rational decisions in regard to their life.

  276. says

    I just think it is a) reasonable restriction to ban late term abortions, except in cases of the life of the mother,

    Great, so let’s ban late term abortions and have legislators instead of doctors deciding what constitutes a threat to the life of the pregnant woman. This sort of legislation has already killed women so I guess you’re okay with killing women so long as it saves, I guess, some OTHER women’s fetuses (usually the death of the pregnant woman means the death of the fetus as well). I notice you don’t include “health” in there so in your mind, a woman who discovers a serious illness that will cause her to, say, become paralyzed from the waist down, or infertile, or get brain damage, were she to give birth, would be shit out of luck. Tough luck, you have to live in a wheelchair, and you never get to have those other children you wanted, and you have to spend the rest of your life with cognitive impairments, because some dude who never met you thought that the fetus inside you “muddled” your right to bodily autonomy.

    and c) the question is not entirely decided on the question of the woman’s bodily autonomy because no other question is.

    You still have to explain why consenting to sex, and the risk of pregnancy and therefore deciding whether to give birth or not “muddles” my right to decide what organisms get to hang out inside my body, using my lungs to get oxygen and my bloodstream to get nutrients.

  277. says

    @Ante

    “So you don’t support the right to die because you have thoroughly stigmatized the idea in your own mind that you don’t know how anyone would want to without being mentally ill. Got it.”

    Do you have trouble reading what I am writing? I’m talking about a very narrow subset of the right to die here, I support it generally.

    The case I was talking about was this:

    “Briefly, I don’t think it is either possible to be of sound mind and judgment and healthy and want to kill yourself, ”

    The operative word in that sentence is ‘healthy.’ I find it extremely puzzling why a person without being in a lot of pain and no obvious mental health issues (that are known to occur) would wish to die. If we change the case to something like “a person who is dying of cancer but is of sound mind and judgment” the case becomes understandable, and incidentally I support in that case. It also becomes understandable if the person is suffering from clinical depression, but which case I do not support that (and it should remain illegal) because a clinically depress person is not of sound judgment.

    “You think it isn’t possible to judge if a person isn’t mentally and therefore oppose euthanasia,”

    in extreme case, in which the person requesting to die is (physically) healthy and does not have any apparent mental health issues, it is so puzzling that yes I think it does make problematic our notions of mental health. Tough cases make for bad law, meaning my doubt here does not confer concerning typical mental health issues and judgments of mental soundness. Maybe I find the case more puzzling than most, but I can’t help I find it so odd.

  278. says

    so apparently michael’s argument is that bodily autonomy is less important than him feeling icky about things. late term abortion bad cuz precious babeez! suicide bad cuz crazy people!

    swell. I fucking love people who find their feelz more important than my human rights.

  279. Amphiox says

    I just think it is a) reasonable restriction to ban late term abortions, except in cases of the life of the mother,

    You really should READ these threads in their entirety before interjecting into a threat as late as you have. This was covered well before the first 100 posts. Past fetal viability, induced birth is the procedure that terminates a normal pregnancy, which satisfies the woman’s right to bodily autonomy AND preserves the fetus, allowing it to become a baby. Even in cases where the woman’s life is threatened, if induced birth is possible, it is still the preferred first option.

    Abortion is only even considered if induced birth is not possible. That typically means that either woman or fetus cannot or is unlikely to survive the procedure of induced birth. And in both these cases the fetus is doomed regardless.

    In other words, there *already exists* a reasonable limitation on late-term abortion, enforced through medicolegal ethics pertaining to the availability of induced birth as a procedure, wherein medical professionals that perform abortion when induced birth should be indicated are guilty of malpractice at the very least.

    No ADDITIONAL restrictions are required.

    c) the question is not entirely decided on the question of the woman’s bodily autonomy because no other question is.

    The question is decided entirely on the balance of the woman’s bodily autonomy on the one hand, and the utter absence of any imaginable circumstance on the other hand that outweighs the woman’s right to bodily autonomy to a degree that would justify any restriction of abortion access beyond that which already exists with respect to the induced birth issue as already described, in the first 100 posts of this thread.

  280. says

    michael @788:

    My point isn’t the women consenting to the risk of pregnancy removes all bodily autonomy, that only it muddles the issue enough that it factors into the consideration.

    You have an exceptionally low opinion of women.
    Pregnancy only muddies the waters if you think fetuses are Bearers of Special Rights. *You* clearly have issues with abortion. Stop projecting your issues onto others.

  281. says

    Oh and this:

    I could be convinced that viability does not confer personhood onto a fetus, and in which case I would no longer have any qualms about abortion-at-any-time.

    Why the hell is the fetus more important to you than the pregnant woman?

  282. says

    I’m talking about a very narrow subset of the right to die here, I support it generally.

    yeah, we’ve already noticed you’re only for human rights when they don’t confuse you or squick you out.

    I find it extremely puzzling why a person without being in a lot of pain and no obvious mental health issues (that are known to occur) would wish to die.

    you being “puzzled” is a shittastic reason to deny someone bodily autonomy.

    a clinically depress person is not of sound judgment.

    fuck you and your bigotry.

  283. Amphiox says

    in extreme case, in which the person requesting to die is (physically) healthy and does not have any apparent mental health issues, it is so puzzling that yes I think it does make problematic our notions of mental health.

    A person who is physically healthy without apparent mental health issues is fully capable of committing suicide on his or her own. He or she *does not need* euthanasia. This is just another one of those ridiculous hypotheticals that do not have any grounding in real-life situations.

  284. says

    @Jadehawk

    “that is actually not relevant. bodily autonomy means you get to kill yourself even when you’re not mentally healthy.”

    That only covers people committing suicide by themselves. The thread of this conversation is about whether a doctor should honor the request for the healthy person being asked to being euthanized.

    a healthy person who kills themselves directly? should not be illegal.

    a doctor euthanizing a person who is healthy and appears to be of sound mind and judgment? should by illegal.

  285. Amphiox says

    I could be convinced that viability does not confer personhood onto a fetus, and in which case I would no longer have any qualms about abortion-at-any-time.

    Abortion BY DEFINITION (and the definition was given several times upthread already) is termination of a pregnancy BEFORE viability. After viability pregnancy termination is BIRTH, induced or otherwise.

    Viability is irrelevant to the abortion debate.

    Late-term abortions, unless in cases of medicolegal malpractice, ONLY occur in non-viable pregnancies.

  286. says

    Ahem.

    You still have to explain why consenting to sex, and the risk of pregnancy and therefore deciding whether to give birth or not “muddles” my right to decide what organisms get to hang out inside my body, using my lungs to get oxygen and my bloodstream to get nutrients.

  287. says

    a need for clarification: assisted suicide is an issue only because it involves a second person, and issues of pressure might arise. Meaning, issues of bodily autonomy being violated.
    There’s absolutely no non-bigoted argument against a person’s right to suicide.

  288. Amphiox says

    a doctor euthanizing a person who is healthy and appears to be of sound mind and judgment? should by illegal.

    It would be illegal NOT because of any issue of the person’s bodily autonomy. It would be illegal for the simple reason that a healthy person of sound mind and judgment is capable of committing suicide on his or her own, and therefore does not need euthanasia. And as a general principle, physicians should not offer or perform procedures on patients that the patient does not need.

  289. says

    @jadehawk

    “you being “puzzled” is a shittastic reason to deny someone bodily autonomy.”

    it sure is when puzzling means “I doubt this person is actually rational.”

    “yeah, we’ve already noticed you’re only for human rights when they don’t confuse you or squick you out.”

    I am for human rights insofar as they are equally applied and developed with systematic cohesion.

  290. says

    a doctor euthanizing a person who is healthy and appears to be of sound mind and judgment? should by illegal.

    which is not an issue of bodily autonomy, and therefore irrelevant to the conversation.

  291. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    a doctor euthanizing a person who is healthy and appears to be of sound mind and judgment? should by illegal.

    Wrong answer. The only correct answer is that it is none of your mother fucking business, and your opinion is trash. That is reality.

  292. says

    it sure is when puzzling means “I doubt this person is actually rational.”

    no, it actually isn’t. your squeamishness is, once again, not an argument. you don’t get to decide for others what actions are rational when it concerns their own body.

    I am for human rights insofar as they are equally applied and developed with systematic cohesion.

    your argumentation in this thread shows otherwise.

  293. Amphiox says

    a clinically depress person is not of sound judgment.

    On the contrary, the question of mental illness diagnosis and the question of soundness of judgment are TWO SEPARATE ISSUES, and MUST BE DETERMINED SEPARATELY. This is basic psychiatry.

    A clinically depressed person can EASILY be of sound judgment. In fact most are. Most are fully aware of their diagnosis and modulate their judgments in full accordance with that knowledge. Most can recognize when a certain emotional impulse is “the depression talking” and in fact try to suppress it, if for example it is an impulse self harm.

    A person can be clinically depressed and not of sound judgment as a result of the symptoms of clinical depression.

    A person can be clinically depressed and not of sound judgment as a result of something completely unrelated to clinical depression.

    A person can be clinically depressed and completely of sound judgment irrespective of the symptoms of clinical depression.

  294. Amphiox says

    I am for human rights insofar as they are equally applied and developed with systematic cohesion.

    Your problem here is either you do not understand the meaning of the words “human rights”, “insofar”, “equally”, “applied”, “developed”, “systemic” or “cohesion.”

    Either that or you are flat out lying.

  295. ajb47 says

    yeah, we’ve already noticed you’re only for human rights when they don’t confuse you or squick you out.

    Thank you, Jadehawk, for getting there ahead of me. “It squicks me out, so you can’t do it”, indeed.

  296. says

    The thread of this conversation is about whether a doctor should honor the request for the healthy person being asked to being euthanized.

    A person “healthy in mind and body” may, and often does, leave instructions as to what should be done, should they later be deemed unable to make such a decision informedly. That is why healthy people “ask to be euthanized.”

  297. says

    I am for human rights insofar as they are equally applied and developed with systematic cohesion.

    spending an entire thread trying to carve out exceptions to human rights based on your feelz is the opposite of trying to apply human rights equally and systematically.

  298. says

    @jadehawk

    “which is not an issue of bodily autonomy, and therefore irrelevant to the conversation.”

    Ok. ..we are running into my disagreement about bodily autonomy and autonomy of action being basically the same thing. yes yes yes they are consider very different but I disagree. If that is going to be your line on the right to die debate, the obvious move here is to make the same exact move regarding the abortion debate.

    So for the sake of argument, let me grant I have been wrong up until this point (big stretch for you I know), and a woman’s bodily autonomy does absolutely secure the right to for the woman to abort the fetus from her body at any time. On what basis do doctors have the right to perform an abortion? I can not think of one that does not entail at least considering the moral status of the fetus.

  299. says

    another thing: people should be able to acquire safe means of suicide (which tends to mean medical supplies), because again, it’s their body and therefore none of anyone else’s business. Assisted suicide, meaning when another person is involved in the actual act, is tricky because of that other person. Restrictions on that are sensible insofar as they prevent non-consensual death. Restricting depressed people just because they’re depressed is not sensible; restricting people with no obvious reason because they must be crazy is not sensible.

  300. says

    yes yes yes they are consider very different but I disagree.

    that’s nice. I don’t care. using the wrong definition to deny people actual bodily autonomy is not an argument.

  301. says

    AHEM.

    Could we possibly take a break from the derail?

    michael kellymiecielica still has to explain why consenting to sex, and the risk of pregnancy and therefore deciding whether to give birth or not, “muddles” my right to decide what organisms get to hang out inside my body, using my lungs to get oxygen and my bloodstream to get nutrients.

    Thanks in advance.

  302. says

    @jadehawk

    “no, it actually isn’t. your squeamishness is, once again, not an argument. you don’t get to decide for others what actions are rational when it concerns their own body.”

    No, I assure you the example is such that I find the person action to be highly suspect in the rationality department. How do you understand rationality? I understand mainly as instrumental rationality and I simply cannot construct a case in which death does indeed outweigh being alive and healthy. enlighten me.

    @daz

    The case under discussion is not conditional, i.e. not kill me later when I get sick. It is kill me now.
    @Amphorix

    I misspoke in regards to the clinical depression thing and it was judgmental and wrong for me to phrase it that way. I hope I did not offend anybody, if I did my bad I’m truly sorry. I was trying to construct a quick example and slipped in to abliest language.

  303. says

    On what basis do doctors have the right to perform an abortion?

    on the basis that a pregnant person can’t safely do so herself. See also my previous comment about what I consider sensible restrictions on assisted suicide; in the hypothetical case of abortion and suicide being equally possible and effective to self-administer, restricting/regulating involvement of authority figures to prevent pressure would be sensible.

  304. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    michael kellymiecielica:

    it sure is when puzzling means “I doubt this person is actually rational.”

    Do you consider pregnant women to be rational? At what moment, during a pregnancy, is a woman no longer rational?

  305. says

    No, I assure you the example is such that I find the person action to be highly suspect in the rationality department.

    and I assure you that your opinion of people’s rationality is not a sound reason to restrict their bodily autonomy.

  306. says

    a clinically depress person is not of sound judgment.

    Oh, he spins, bounces, and plays a flaming doucheweasel bigot kick! A person with clinical depression can most certainly be capable of sound judgement. Why, there are people in this here thread who have clinical depression, and make sound, rational decisions and judgements every. single. day., oh my! Those people are also kicking your pathetic arse in the sound thinking and logical, rational argument department.

    If anyone in this thread is reading as if they have no ability to make a sound judgement, it would be you, Michael.

  307. says

    THANK YOU TONY!

    Folks. Please cease responding to michael’s off-topic postings on euthanasia. At least until he answers my question. Preferably at all, except in the Thunderdome.

  308. says

    ANYway: end of derail about dying. Let’s get back to the part where apparently bodily autonomy can be reduced by wearing a short skirt and being drunk fucking: care to explain why you think others should be allowed to use my body without consent just because I consented to something different? care to explain why I’m not allowed to withdraw consent? Care to explain how that doesn’t deny me basic human rights?

  309. says

    SallyStrange & Tony, my apologies.

    Hey, Michael! You are engaging in a derail, which is against the commenting rules. Take any discussion which is not about abortion to Thunderdome.

    See those words in pretty blue? Well, those are links. Just use your mouse, Cupcake, and click.

  310. says

    shit, that’s what i get for not previewing. again:

    ANYway: end of derail about dying. Let’s get back to the part where apparently bodily autonomy can be reduced by wearing a short skirt and being drunk fucking: care to explain why you think others should be allowed to use my body without consent just because I consented to something different? care to explain why I’m not allowed to withdraw consent? Care to explain how that doesn’t deny me basic human rights?

  311. says

    @Sallystrange,

    It’s off point now, but what I was thinking off is that if a woman consents to the risk of pregnancy then it is conceivable to me that an obligation on her part to the fetus had developed. This does not remove autonomy for the woman but it may condition it in some cases, as I was arguing that autonomy (bodily or otherwise) is not absolute for anyone.

    @jadehawk

    I’m well aware of the normally made distinction between bodily autonomy and autonomy of action. In my second post I spelled out how I was using the terms and I flagged it was a deeper disagreement I was having with people. I even indicated that if someone wants to discuss why this distinction should be maintained, we could. I don’t like the distinction because there are things you can do with your body that are regulated (i.e. drunk driving) which only have the potential for harm, and I think the whole distinction between body/action generally is deeply, deeply suspect in that we are far more defined by what we do then by the structure of our body.

    But in any case, having for the sake of argument conceded that a woman has an absolute right to reject a fetus irrespective of the fetus status as a person, on what ground can a doctor act against a fetus regardless of its status?

  312. David Marjanović says

    *blink* What? 853 comments?

    *runs away screaming*

    Now I wonder if I’ll spend literally all weekend reading this thread.

  313. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    on what ground can a doctor act against a fetus regardless of its status?

    Easy fuckwit. The patient in front of him is a full human being with bodily integrity. There is no other human being it sees. What part of reality don’t you understand?

  314. ajb47 says

    Too fast for me, SallyStrange. Your request came through my email just after I realized the topic had drifted. As much as I dislike it: Me, too.

  315. anteprepro says

    I don’t like the distinction because there are things you can do with your body that are regulated (i.e. drunk driving) which only have the potential for harm, and I think the whole distinction between body/action generally is deeply, deeply suspect in that we are far more defined by what we do then by the structure of our body.

    That’s a lot of bullshit to grapple with. Would it actually have any bearing on Fetus Rights cheerleading if you wrong about the above ridiculous fucking muddle?

  316. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Has MKM ever presented the conclusive evidence that the fetus has more human rights, and is more human, than the woman carrying it? Or is he just an over-opinionated windbag that can be dismissed without evidence…..

  317. A. Noyd says

    michael kellymiecielica (#748)
    [Only up to #800 so far, so excuse me if you've since reconsidered any of these.]

    I’m at a complete lost to explain why a woman’s bodily autonomy is completely beyond reproach in the context of abortion, but we can be curtailed in numerous other ways, i.e. voluntary sex “slavery” contracts.

    Do you know what the word “voluntary” means? Do you understand the implication of putting “slavery” in quotes? S&M does not curtail anyone’s rights or violate bodily autonomy. It’s a consensual activity that simulates a non-consensual one, but consent is given ahead of time and signals are arranged so consent can be withdrawn at any time thereafter. If I were going to donate a kidney to my mother, would you call that voluntary participation in the “theft” of my kidney?

    I am, however, confused by how one can generate such strong bodily rights without necessarily entailing extremely strong property rights in the products of your labor.

    We are our bodies (and the experiences we have with them). We are not our property.

    think it does pretty much follow that if you have absolute control over your body, you have absolute control over the value generated by your efforts.

    Value is relative to market forces. It’s impossible to give everyone absolute control (or anything close to absolute control) over it. I can’t, for instance, demand five thousand dollars an hour for trimming the nails of other people’s pets and have that respected. Who the hell is going to enforce it and on what basis would they justify doing so?

    Pregnancy is known possible outcome if you have Penis-in-virgin sex, you consent to the risk of getting pregnant. … I fail to see how the case of pregnancy is relevantly different from [contracting HIV].

    And abortion exists to correct for the possible outcome of unwanted pregnancy. Thanks to abortion, we do not have to consent to staying pregnant any longer than we wish to. And pregnancy is different from HIV because we have an 100% effective cure for it, so the risks are different.

    persons are of extreme moral importance, as much as possible you should [not] directly harm them. (i.e. cause them pain)

    Forcing them to be born will guarantee them more pain and suffering then ending their lives before they’re even conscious. You failed to answer my #675, so I’ll ask again: why is forcing a fetus to be born is superior to killing it.

    (#763)

    A woman does agree to the risk of pregnancy if she has PiV sex

    A woman agrees to the risk of pregnancy only for the period of time between conception and however long it takes to accomplish her preferred method of removing the embryo/fetus from herself. She can consent to the full 9 months and give birth. Or she can refuse to consent to be pregnant that long and request an earlier termination. You’re absurdly trying to argue that refusing that request is grounds for refusing that request.

    (#777)

    This should include selling and buying body parts.

    Bodily autonomy is satisfied so long as you are able to offer up your parts to someone else. We do preserve this right in many cases, like donation of blood, marrow, kidneys, liver pieces, etc. Whether or not you can do it for profit is a matter beyond bodily autonomy.

  318. says

    @jadehawk

    “On the basis that a pregnant person can’t safely do so herself.”

    That seems to be a non sequitur to me as the question doesn’t turn on the woman safety of doing so but only if she is allowed to do it. Granting that a woman bodily autonomy does being able to reject a fetus at any point, I’m still confused how her safety is enough of a consideration to not at least warrant some consideration to the fetus?

  319. says

    I don’t like the distinction because there are things you can do with your body that are regulated

    you don’t like the distinction because of things that are the result of these being distinct things? lolwut.

    I think the whole distinction between body/action generally is deeply, deeply suspect in that we are far more defined by what we do then by the structure of our body.

    I highly doubt this to be true. My actions are “mine”, but my body is “me”. Aside from that, bodily autonomy is not a distinction between action and body, but a distinction of actions TO the body and actions WITH the body. They concern bodily integrity. And aside from even that, it’s not an issue of what people are “defined by”, but about what causes more harm. Restrictions of outward action cause less injury and psychological stress than restrictions on actions that concern bodily integrity.

  320. ajb47 says

    David Marjanović @858

    You don’t have to read it all. You can read from where either chris61 comes in or where michael kellymiecielica comes in because the posts all repeat from there.

  321. says

    @Ned

    “Easy fuckwit. The patient in front of him is a full human being with bodily integrity. There is no other human being it sees. What part of reality don’t you understand?”

    Thank you. You do not consider a fetus a person as is implicit in the above That would mean a doctor is able to always act against a fetus regardless of the woman’s bodily autonomy. That is a cogent response to my question. I, however, disagree with the the fetus not being a person.

  322. Rey Fox says

    #741:

    I find it curious…

    Chris, please don’t try to sound smart. It’s embarrassing for everyone involved.

    Amphiox #668:

    That point, such as it is, is the point of viability, when induced birth becomes the proper medical procedure and abortion ceases to be indicated except in rare, exceptional circumstances. And even here the consideration of the fetus NEVER overrides the woman’s autonomy absolutely, since induced birth satisfies both considerations. The only autonomy that is taken from the woman is the autonomy of choosing the precise method by which her pregnancy should be terminated – ie she can’t demand an abortion when induced birth is deemed medically preferable.

    Well, clearly you can see the problem here. Leaving these decisions up to the womb-bearer and associated medical professionals? Far, far too sensible. We need ignorant grandstanding politicians and spirit-talkers to weigh in on this.

  323. says

    michael kellymiecielica

    Do you stand by this statement, made in your #788?

    I could be convinced that viability does not confer personhood onto a fetus, and in which case I would no longer have any qualms about abortion-at-any-time.

    If you do, why have you ignored the many statements in this thread, explicitly saying that, outside of medical emergencies, abortions do not happen post-viability, but rather live-births do?

  324. says

    That seems to be a non sequitur to me as the question doesn’t turn on the woman safety of doing so but only if she is allowed to do it.

    the issue of being able to do so with the desired result (i.e. safely) is absolutely relevant: restricting access to HELP is a restriction of bodily autonomy if there’s no reasonable way to do something without help.

    Granting that a woman bodily autonomy does being able to reject a fetus at any point, I’m still confused how her safety is enough of a consideration to not at least warrant some consideration to the fetus?

    this is completely irrelevant to the question of doctors being allowed to help with abortions vs help with suicide.
    aside from that, it’s already been answered: consideration of the fetus simply never overrides bodily autonomy. where consideration for the fetus and the pregnant person’s bodily autonomy can be both preserved this should be done and can be done entirely without artificial gestational age restrictions. See also: Canada.

  325. anteprepro says

    I, however, disagree with the the fetus not being a person.

    Congratulations. Who gives a shit?

  326. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I, however, disagree with the the fetus not being a person.

    Since it is an unevidence mere opinion, it is dismissed without evidence. Your word is dismissed….

  327. says

    That would mean a doctor is able to always act against a fetus regardless of the woman’s bodily autonomy.

    since this is impossible, it is irrelevant.

  328. says

    michael:

    Thank you. You do not consider a fetus a person as is implicit in the above That would mean a doctor is able to always act against a fetus regardless of the woman’s bodily autonomy. That is a cogent response to my question. I, however, disagree with the the fetus not being a person.

    My gob is smacked. I really, Really, REALLY, had no clue that you would disagree with that. Honestly.
    At this point, you may need to wipe the sarcasm off your screen.
    (now for my non snarky response)
    In your opinion (hopefully it is an opinion backed by evidence, rather than your personal feelings), what are the qualities that define personhood?

  329. Amphiox says

    on what ground can a doctor act against a fetus regardless of its status?

    On the ground of doing what is best for his or her patient. In this case it is the woman.

    Let me repeat. The fetus is not the physician’s patient. It only becomes a patient if the woman consents to it being so, and instructs the physician to regard it as so (ie it is a wanted pregnancy).

    I misspoke in regards to the clinical depression thing and it was judgmental and wrong for me to phrase it that way. I hope I did not offend anybody, if I did my bad I’m truly sorry. I was trying to construct a quick example and slipped in to abliest language.

    You “misspoke”, did you?

    Fine then. Here is your chance to speak again. Repeat it with better phrasing and language so that it ISN’t judgmental.

    “I hope I did not offend anybody”

    You do realize that this is the classic dishonest non-apology apology, do you?

    “Ableist” language

    Your problems with that statement go FAR beyond merely “ableist” language. Among other things it betrayed a complete failure to understand what clinical depression IS and what it entails. ie You proved yourself completely ignorant of the subject you tried to speak about.

    Perhaps you should consider this a lesson – instead of trying to “construct quick examples” maybe you should instead TAKE SOME TIME TO THINK about what it is you are saying?

  330. Amphiox says

    That would mean a doctor is able to always act against a fetus regardless of the woman’s bodily autonomy.

    Only if he or she could do so without involving, going through, or interfering with the woman’s body in any way without her consent.

    And unless that doctor was telekinetic and/or had access to a matter transporter more advanced than the ones depicted in Star Trek, that’s impossible.

  331. ajb47 says

    michael kellymiecielica @857

    But in any case, having for the sake of argument conceded that a woman has an absolute right to reject a fetus irrespective of the fetus status as a person, on what ground can a doctor act against a fetus regardless of its status?,/blockquote>

    On the grounds that the woman is a fully realized person and the patient and the fetus is the one doing the assaulting. “Self-defense” includes defense of others. Even if (and I don’t agree with this) the fetus is given full personhood, it is impinging on the woman’s bodily integrity, and that is not allowed anywhere else in society. You still have not explained why it should be different in the case of a pregnant woman.

  332. Amphiox says

    I, however, disagree with the the fetus not being a person.

    1. Your positions entails that a fetus is not just a person, but MORE THAN A PERSON. Or else it entails that a pregnant woman, at some point in her pregnancy becomes LESS THAN A PERSON.

    Please clarify, which is it?

    2. Ultimately, what you think is irrelevant except for the singular circumstance wherein you are pregnant and needing to decide what to do with your own pregnancy and fetus. Otherwise, the only opinion that matters is that of the woman involved. If she wishes to think of her fetus as a person, then she can carry it to term. It is her CHOICE.

  333. says

    michael:
    re-fetal personhood

     

    Even if fetuses were people, there are no circumstances where one human being can make use of the body of another human being without their consent. The fetus/person still has to derive sustenance from the pregnant woman. The pregnant woman can withdraw her consent at any time bc it’s her body.

    (and no, none of the above has been dealt with, in exhaustive detail in this thread. Nope. Nosiree.)

  334. David Marjanović says

    I think the whole distinction between body/action generally is deeply, deeply suspect in that we are far more defined by what we do then by the structure of our body.

    “Defined by”?

    I am. My existence is a brute fact. I’m an individual, not a category that could be defined. Not being a sponge or indeed a blastocyst, I’m pretty easy to tell apart from everyone and everything else…

    What are you talking about?

  335. anteprepro says

    Remember, in all of this debate about fetal personhood: michael claims to be pro-choice.

    “lolwut” is my only response.

  336. says

    What are you talking about?

    he’s philosophising about (self-)identity and character(or personality)-definition. which indeed has fuckall to do with this topic.

  337. anteprepro says

    “More defined by what we do then the structure of our body” = Creationist level denial of biology and neuroscience.

    Basically dualism with an extra dollop of incoherence!

  338. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Nobody justifies treating cancer this way. It would seem pretty silly because a tumor has no more capacity for agency or intent than a fetus does. So why is anyone supposed to consider this a serious argument to justify abortion rights?

    That’s because no one, at least no number of people of consequence, is so fucking stupid as to consider there to be a secular argument against treating cancer.

  339. Amphiox says

    I think the whole distinction between body/action generally is deeply, deeply suspect in that we are far more defined by what we do then by the structure of our body.

    Every individual defines for himself or herself what his or her self-identity is.

    Some may CHOOSE to define themselves by what they do. But others do not.

    And it is just about the most deeply PERSONAL choice any individual can make.

    Who the hell do you think you are to dictate to others how they should be defined?

  340. Amphiox says

    Nobody justifies treating cancer this way. It would seem pretty silly because a tumor has no more capacity for agency or intent than a fetus does. So why is anyone supposed to consider this a serious argument to justify abortion rights?

    Nobody is out there trying to systematically outlaw cancer treatment. If there were you bet that the argument from self-defence would be an appropriate one to use, among many others.

  341. says

    Excuse me. You are not answering the question.

    The question is, HOW does consenting to sex and the possibility of pregnancy, which means either continuing or terminating the pregnancy, “muddle” my right to decide what goes on inside of my body?

    Your response:

    It’s off point now, but what I was thinking off is that if a woman consents to the risk of pregnancy then it is conceivable to me that an obligation on her part to the fetus had developed.

    This is not an explanation. It is just an assertion of the same assertion as before, that my bodily autonomy can be at least partially abrogated by the act of engaging in consensual hetero sex while fertile.

    This does not remove autonomy for the woman but it may condition it in some cases, as I was arguing that autonomy (bodily or otherwise) is not absolute for anyone.

    If my right to decide what happens inside my body is conditional on what anybody thinks about it but myself, my right is being curtailed. Again, you merely repeat the assertion, but without explaining. And regardless of whether you think conditions besides pregnancy can abrogate a person’s right to decide what happens to their body, you STILL need to explain why consenting to sex and the possibility of pregnancy “muddles” my right to decide what happens inside my body. The closest you’ve come is some sort of “obligation” to a hypothetical fetus. Why? Considering that I am already clear that an unplanned fetus would not be welcome, on what grounds do you assert my obligation?

  342. says

    I got to get to bed, this has been a very interesting discussion but there is two things I want to clear the air about just in case I don’t get the time to respond in more depth tomorrow (which is possible as I have papers to grade):

    @amphoix

    RE: Clinical Depression example.

    I thoughtlessly, carelessly betrayed a lack of empathy and understanding on my part in regards to people with mental illness. What I was trying to give an intuitive example of an impairment to mental faculties which would remove a person from being considered of being of sound mind and judgment. I, senselessly, parroted an incorrect and indeed hostile view of what clinical depression entails. I should not have done so.

    I am sorry for any and all offense my slipshod words and invoking an abliest mind set caused. This was not my intent, but even so that does not remove any fault for any pain my careless action may have caused. I deeply regret and apologize for any pain I may have caused anybody reading this thread.

    @all

    I realize this is my first really major conversation on this blog as I have been a lurker here for awhile. I would like to thank everyone for the discussion that I found thoroughly stimulating and given a lot to think about. Have a good night.

  343. says

    michael:

    http://www.psych.upenn.edu/~mfarah/Neuroethics-Personhood.pdf
    The earliest explicit definition of personhood came
    from the sixth-century philosopher Boethius, who equated
    a person with “an individual substance of a rational nature”
    (Singer 1994). Cognitive capacities such as rationality have
    remained important features of most subsequent accounts
    of personhood,
    1
    including the two most influential accounts
    of personhood, those of John Locke and Emmanuel Kant.
    For Locke, there were three essential characteristics of
    personhood: rationality, self-awareness, and the linkage of
    this self-awareness by memory across time and space. In
    his words, a person is “an intelligent being that has reason
    and reflection, and can consider itself the same thinking
    being in different times and places” (Locke, 1997). Kant’s
    formulation also includes intelligence, but mainly for its
    role in enabling one to act morally. At the heart of moral
    action, for Kant, was the ability to distinguish between
    persons and things and treat them accordingly. Whereas
    things may be valued because they are desirable or useful,
    persons have an intrinsic value, in Kant’s terms a “dignity.”
    In his words “ every rational being exists as an end in
    himself and not merely as a means to be arbitrarily used
    by this or that will . . . rational beings are called persons
    inasmuch as their nature already marks them out as ends
    in themselves” (Kant 1948)

    {…}

    A few other contemporary definitions of personhood
    will be quoted here for the sake of indicating their funda-
    mental similarities, both in the human traits singled out as
    relevant to personhood and in the difficulty of translating
    any of these sets of traits into operational criteria for decid-
    ing which entities are persons and which not. From Tooley
    (1972): something is a person “if it possesses the concept of a
    self as a continuing subject of experiences and other mental
    states, and believes that it is itself such a continuing entity.”
    From Feinberg (1980,189): “persons are those beings who
    are conscious, have a concept and awareness of themselves,
    are capable of experiencing emotions, can reason and ac-
    quire understanding, can plan ahead, can act on their plans,
    and can feel pleasure and pain.” From Englehardt (1986,
    107): “What distinguishes persons is their capacity to be
    self-conscious, rational, and concerned with worthiness of
    blame or praise.” From Rorty (1988, 43): “A person is
    …(a)
    capable of being directed by its conception of its own iden-
    tity and what is important to that identity, and (b) capable of
    interacting with others, in a common world. A person is that
    interactive member of a community, reflexively sensitive to
    the contexts of her activity, a critically reflective inventor of
    the story of her life.

    [...]

    Please note that there is no definition of ‘personhood’ that is agreed upon universally. That said, there are several qualities of personhood that can be agreed upon. How many of the various qualities of personhood does a fetus possess?

  344. says

    yeah, I’d still like a response to these, too:

    ->explain why bodily autonomy should ever ethically be made conditional, without using an inaccurate definition of bodily autonomy that includes things unrelated to what happens TO one’s body.

    ->explain then how consent to thing A is partial consent to thing B, and how that’s not also an argument for rape of drunk/sexually titillating people.

  345. Amphiox says

    What I was trying to give an intuitive example of an impairment to mental faculties which would remove a person from being considered of being of sound mind and judgment.

    See, your first error was in arrogantly presuming that “intuitive” examples of impairments to mental faculties which would remove a person from being considered of being sound mind and judgment actually exist to be so flippantly given.

    Because the question of being of sound mind and judgment is actually pretty essential to the concept of humanity itself?

    And it is such a complicated and loaded issue that the so-called “intuitive”, which is actually the “lazy, I don’t want to think hard on this hard issue, so I’ll just say whatever pops into my head,” is actually more likely to be completely wrong than anywhere approaching even the shadow of the hint of the accurate?

    Perhaps, again, you should take this as an indication that you should, perhaps, THINK a bit about what you are saying before saying it?

  346. says

    SallyStrange:

    Considering that I am already clear that an unplanned fetus would not be welcome, on what grounds do you assert my obligation?

    On the basis that “sluts must suffer the consequences!” It’s what Michael keeps saying, while trying not to say it in those words, preferring to wrap that sentiment in masses of incoherent bullshit.

  347. says

    I would like to thank everyone for the discussion that I found thoroughly stimulating and given a lot to think about.

    I’m so happy that my ongoing struggle to maintain the basic human rights for which the previous generation of women fought so desperately, and which is currently being beaten back by a widespread misogynist backlash, has given you so much delicious food for thought.

    I mean, it’s not like any adult women’s lives are on the line here.

    /bitter, bitter sarcasm

  348. Valde says

    On the basis that “sluts must suffer the consequences!” It’s what Michael keeps saying, while trying not to say it in those words, preferring to wrap that sentiment in masses of incoherent bullshit.

    There is this very very angry dudebro on TFA who won’t stop accusing me, and others, of being the B word – because, apparently we are total abject failures for having failed to reproduce – because reproduction is the BEST THING A WOMAN CAN DO IN LIFE.

  349. says

    On the basis that “sluts must suffer the consequences!” It’s what Michael keeps saying, while trying not to say it in those words, preferring to wrap that sentiment in masses of incoherent bullshit.

    It’s bloody obvious to everyone but him.

  350. says

    I would like to thank everyone for the discussion that I found thoroughly stimulating and given a lot to think about.

    well I’m glad discussing whether I deserve human rights was so fun to you. :-/

    I fucking hate people.

  351. A. Noyd says

    michael kellymiecielica (#809)

    I’m pro-choice, even if I’m pro-choice-with-fewer-choices.

    You’re not pro-choice if women are only allowed to select from the options you’re comfortable with. That’s as stupid as people who say they’re for marriage equality because gay people and straight people are equally free to marry someone of the opposite sex.

    I find it extremely puzzling why a person without being in a lot of pain and no obvious mental health issues (that are known to occur) would wish to die.

    You’re the one stipulating they are of sound mind. That their reasons might be incomprehensible to you does not mean the reasons are nonexistent. No one should be required to give up their bodily autonomy because you insist on measuring the soundess of their mind against your comprehension of their choices. (Given the general level of comprehension you’ve displayed in this thread, the rest of us can appreciate just how much of a tragedy for human rights that would be.)

    (#833)

    I am for human rights insofar as they are equally applied and developed with systematic cohesion.

    Bullshit. You keep dodging the question of why fetuses, and only fetuses, get the right to use someone’s organs without permission. Or if you think obligation covers it, see below. Also, answer the related question about why forcing a fetus to be born is superior to killing it.

    (#842)

    On what basis do doctors have the right to perform an abortion?

    On the basis that they’ve been asked to by the woman. Appointing agents to carry out our will is the rule of human society rather than the exception.

    (#846)

    How do you understand rationality?

    Clearly far better than you do.

    (#857)

    then it is conceivable to me that an obligation on her part to the fetus had developed

    So why can’t I choose to fulfill this supposed obligation by killing the fetus before it can suffer?

    I think the whole distinction between body/action generally is deeply, deeply suspect in that we are far more defined by what we do then by the structure of our body.

    Then how do you justify defining a fetus as a person? In terms of what they all do, people outside the womb have far less in common with fetuses than they have with dogs, cats, kangaroos, whales, etc.

  352. says

    For those who have uttered the following (or variations):

    I’m pro-choice, but women shouldn’t be able to get pregnant and abort the fetus when they want

    I’m pro-choice, but at some point during pregnancy, the rights of the fetus must be taken into account

    I’m pro-choice, but women should consider the consequences of their actions

    I’m pro-choice, but late term abortions are wrong

    I’m pro-choice, but this is a grey area. I think the rights of the fetus conflict with the rights of the mother

    I’m pro-choice, but at some point during pregnancy, the interests of the state outweigh the wishes of the pregnant woman

    I’m pro-choice, but women ought to take into account the desires of people who want to adopt

     

    You are not pro-choice.

    If you utter the words “I’m pro-choice, but…”, you have found a scenario in which you think it is acceptable to deny women their rights.

    There is no scenario in which it is acceptable to deny women their rights.

    Being pro-choice means you support the right of women to make decisions about their reproductive health, no matter the circumstances. Being pro-choice means supporting a woman’s right to bodily autonomy, with no exceptions. Bodily autonomy is a right that all humans persons possess. That includes pregnant women.

  353. says

    michael

    Pregnancy is known possible outcome if you have Penis-in-virgin sex, you consent to the risk of getting pregnant.

    Traffic accidents are a known possible outcome of leaving your house, you consent to the risk of being run over. No medical care for you! Also, no seatbelts.
    Hell, this is stupid. Fertile women are well aware that no contraception method is 100% safe. We know pretty well that we might become pregnant. We’re not asking for somebody to magically prevent pregnancy. This is about the right to deal with unwanted side-effects, i.e. pregnancy.

    the woman, except in cases of rape/incest, consented to the risk of pregnancy and this create a not-quite-consent situation that lowers the respect for the women’s autonomy.

    So, once women have PIV they become less human, probably 3/5th of a human.

    I just think it is a) reasonable restriction to ban late term abortions, except in cases of the life of the mother,

    Yeah, I have three friends who had to terminate their pregnancies early because of HELLP. In two cases the baby survived, in one case it died. Tell me, how big did the women’s chances of dying have to be in order to being allowed to have the medical care they needed? Does it have to be 50/50 life or death? The risk of losing a kidney apparently doesn’t count, because that doesn’t kill you…
    How big? 50%? 30% 10% 1%? Choose your percentage, because it tells me exactly how many women you’re willing to kill for the sake of the fetus.

    I’m still confused how her safety is enough of a consideration to not at least warrant some consideration to the fetus?

    That’s because you’re still confused about the concept of women as people

    Valde

    But, only 2% of women ever decide to give their babies up for adoption. Because it’s really really fucking hard. Women get attached to the child they have birthed.

    It’s not even attachment. I once witnessed how a woman is treated who wanted to give her child up for adoption. She became a monster. People said the most horrible things about her. While adopting a child is seen as a heroic act, giving a child up for adoption is social suicide, even worse than having a child in a situation where you’d rather stay childfree.

    There is this very very angry dudebro on TFA who won’t stop accusing me, and others, of being the B word – because, apparently we are total abject failures for having failed to reproduce – because reproduction is the BEST THING A WOMAN CAN DO IN LIFE.

    Wait, I have reproduced. And I’m raising those children. Which means that I am fully aware of the fact that having another one would probably completely ruin my health (yay auto immune diseases triggered by pregnancy!) and if it didn’t would ruin our lives. Hell, I just broke my foot and that’s a matter of six weeks and it is already a huge problem because I cannot fulfill my duties as usual. I have a pretty good concept what a potentially complicated pregnancy and a baby would do…

    amphiox

    In other words, there was likely no time in our entire history as a sentient entity where the “natural” order was that pregnancy = no choice but to gestate the fetus all the way to birth.

    When I first became pregnant I got a full laundry list of herbs and spices I was advised to use with moderation. Why? Because in large quantities they can induce a miscarriage. Guess how we know that…

    Late-term abortions, unless in cases of medicolegal malpractice, ONLY occur in non-viable pregnancies.

    Not exactly true. There is a very small subset of viable but very ill fetuses where the pregnancy is terminated with the specific goal to kill the fetus, and there’s a very small subset where you have to remove the fetus via D&E, which kills it, because everything else is too risky for the woman. But these scenarios have nothing to do with the forced birther unicorn-abortion* where Sl*tty McSl*t decides at 8 months that she no longer wants to be pregnant and that she also wants the fetus killed and prepared for the barbecue.
    Late term abortions are heartbreaking affairs, because they happen to women who very much want to be pregnant and have a baby, and I find people who feel the need to regulate and control the medical care they get to be even greater assholes than the usual forced birthers.

    *everybody talks about it but nobody has ever seen it happen

    Tony

    I’m pro-choice, but at some point during pregnancy, the rights of the fetus must be taken into account

    You know, if people were so much in favour of the fetus, there are many things they could work on, like making sure every pregnant woman gets free prenatal care. They could fight for laws that would allow women whose pregnancy is threatened by their job to have a paid leave. A friend of mine had to stay in bed for a whomping 14 weeks (!) in order to avoid a miscarriage or very early premie. They would generally fight to make the world safer for pregnant women. But the thing is, the women would benefit from these things as well, therefore they are totally against them, because we all know that sl*ts must suffer the consequences of their actions.

  354. maddog1129 says

    @ Carlie # 623

    Thanks for your reply to my query

    I’m just wondering, granting that there is an absolute right of a pregnant person to decide they don’t want to be pregnant any more, what is the standard of medical practice in fulfilling the patient’s wishes?

    The actual practice, depending on the state, is to:
    -give her a lecture about how it’s a baby
    -get some literature about how it’s a baby
    -force her to get an ultrasound tube shoved up her vagina and make her listen to a description of the embryo/look at a picture/hear a heartbeat (varies depending on the state and the humanity of the doctor)
    -leave and wait up to three days to come back for the procedure just to be sure she won’t change her flighty little mind

    These sound to me like political priorities of politicians, and not anything that arises from what medical practitioners think the standard of care is (except, of course, for the general principle of informed consent, which doesn’t seem to necessarily require any of the above).

    Ideal practice? To figure out how to get it out with the least damage to the woman in question, adapted for the situation. Before maximum viability, that means abortion following whatever method the doctor deems most appropriate. Post viability, that depends on the reason. The only times it’s ever happened is due to severe medical necessity, that either that the woman is dying or the fetus is, so whether or not that results in a live birth depends entirely on the circumstances and how urgent it is to get it out right now and how that has to happen. If you’re talking about that hypothetical 8.5 month fetus and a woman who suddenly just decides she doesn’t want to be pregnant any more? Sure, live birth, but induced right then and in the method the woman desires.

    Ok, thanks. I was wondering about maybe slightly more detail on the “how it has to happen” choices that doctors and their patients have to choose from, and, from a medical practitioner’s standpoint, how much of the selection is up to the patient, and how much to the practitioner.

    People (I’m not saying you, but many others in this thread) get it backwards – the goal of abortion isn’t fetal death, it’s to not remain pregnant any longer than you want to.

    Right, understood.

    P.S. yours is the first reply to my query that I saw, and I wanted to make a response, even though it’s several hours later. I haven’t scoured the following posts yet to see if anyone else answered.

  355. maddog1129 says

    @ Inaji #643

    maddog @ 621:

    I think that’s the intent and effect of some anti abortion legislation, but not necessarily or always

    Yes, it is the intent and and effect of all anti-abortion legislation, and if you think otherwise, you don’t have the slightest idea of what legislation so far has done. Abortion is illegal, in practice, if not in fact, in South Dakota. The same legislative nastiness has been done where I live, too – North Dakota.

    Illegal, yes. I was drawing a distinction between a civil prohibition and the definition of a crime. Some anti-abortion legislation creates crimes; others simply make civil regulations. TRAP laws in a number of jurisdictions do, as you say, make it impossible, or nearly so, to get legal access to what is, after all, a constitutionally protected right. I first read several years ago about the virtual extinction of access to abortion services in Mississippi, and S.D. and N.D. have followed suit. The legislators are getting more *creative* all the time. I’m not quite sure how they’ve gotten away with that, though — burdening constitutional rights out of existence.

  356. Maureen Brian says

    maddog1129 @ 903,

    What Carlie says was wonderfully sarky and, as she knows, represents the state of confusion the US is getting itself into – where the right to an abortion, or rather to make that decision privately and without political interference, is legally protected but enforcing that right is being made ever more difficult.

    By contrast, you might like to see this page from bpas, one of the two main abortion providers* in the UK – an outline of the thinking process their trained counsellor would help you through, if you’d not already decided, all with a view to making wanted abortions happen as swiftly as possible and under the supervision of a specialist doctor.

    http://www.bpas.org/bpaswoman/pregnancy-choices

    * In the early days after legalisation, abortions were carried out within the National Health Service or, as had always been available to the rich whatever the law said, in private “nursing homes.” A review some years later showed that the quality of care / availability of service was very patchy. Here and there it was just plain godawful. Now the majority of elective abortions are performed by two non-profits, of which this is one. Medical emergencies would still be dealt with in an NHS hospital and by a senior obstetrician.

  357. opposablethumbs says

    Tony, have I said lately how much I like you? and Inaji and SallyStrange and Daz and Dalillama and LykeX and MaureenBrian and Jadehawk and, well, all of you. You rock.
    .
    I still want to know why a foetus should have more rights than any adult or child ever born …

  358. Pteryxx says

    quoting Giliell @902:

    So, once women have PIV they become less human, probably 3/5th of a human.

    I wondered about that so I checked the math. A full-term pregnancy being 40 weeks, 3/5 of that is 24 weeks. (The second trimester is from 13 to 27 weeks.) And via pfft, the Roe vs Wade decision allows restrictions after viability which

    “is usually placed at about seven months (28 weeks) but may occur earlier, even at 24 weeks.”[2]

    So 3/5 of a human is actually a rather accurate estimation. <_<

  359. Maureen Brian says

    I know @ 904 wasn’t addressed to me but, in reply to your final paragraph …

    * you need more women in your legislatures

    * you need more backbone in your medics.

    Do you realise that no national college of any branch of medicine anywhere I can think of would put up with the bullshit laid upon US docs by ignorant anti-abortion fanatics? (Very few countries would elect quite so many of them.)

  360. says

    I’m not quite sure how they’ve gotten away with that, though — burdening constitutional rights out of existence.

    it’s because Roe v Wade isn’t actually the precedent/Supreme Court Case used to decide what is or isn’t constitutional in regards to abortion; it’s Planned Parenthood v Casey, and what qualifies as “undue burden” has been nibbled away to almost nothing over the decades.

  361. carlie says

    The legislators are getting more *creative* all the time. I’m not quite sure how they’ve gotten away with that, though — burdening constitutional rights out of existence.

    That’s one of the things people have been highlighting on the other Dave Silverman thread – they’ve gotten away with it by virtue of the fact that so many people see “I’m pro-choice but with restrictions” as a reasonable compromise. Because the only major party that even says abortion is ok went with the phrase “Safe, legal, and rare”. Because all of the rhetoric has been ceded to the concept that abortion is always a sad and tragic thing and those poor women who have to choose it because they have no other options. The slippery slope isn’t legal abortion to aborting a 39 week fetus, it’s abortion is tragic to legislating them out of existence.

  362. carlie says

    I think I linked to this in the other thread: Ophelia has an article about how doctors can’t find training for abortion, and if so often aren’t allowed to practice it.

    only 40 percent of OB-GYN programs in the country offer comprehensive abortion training.

    In 2011, she published a paper in which she found that, while 97 percent of OB-GYNs encountered patients seeking abortions, only 14 percent provided them.

  363. says

    only 40 percent of OB-GYN programs in the country offer comprehensive abortion training.

    Which is plain frightening since many abortion procedures are part of women’s healthcare. Hell, I had an abortion after a miscarriage (also known as not really sl*tty sl*t and legitimate abortion. How that affects the medical process is beyond me).
    Will they notice something is wrong when their “good women” are suffering the consequences of ruining OB/Gyn care?

  364. says

    Will they notice something is wrong when their “good women” are suffering the consequences of ruining OB/Gyn care?

    don’t be silly. dying because there’s no more safe abortion is a wonderful opportunity to share Jesus’ pain [/Catholic]

  365. vaiyt says

    So, once women have PIV they become less human, probably 3/5th of a human.

    Hit the nail on the head.

  366. says

    @Jadehawk

    Now, just to be clear, what you are looking for are cases in which is it ethically permissible to do something to an another’s body without their consent correct? Or in other words, are there cases where other ethical considerations which override the person’s right to bodily control? I think I have a few classes of examples, through a couple of them can be haggled over.

    1) Children: Should children be allowed to refuse medical treatment that is proscribed by their parents and doctors? To be clear I mean children below like the age of 13, not a 17 year-old. I think this is probably the best case in which another’s bodily control can be overridden in that children, very young children especially, lack the necessary abstract reasoning capacities to the point where their decisions about their body shouldn’t be the final word. Now, I guess a one could argue that children, generally, lack bodily autonomy because of the same reason I am citing. But I find that to be specious and rather slipshod because we always ask when is bodily autonomy present for a kid? What age?

    Of course there a whole bunch of trivial examples in the same vein. I.e. parents making their kids take baths, eat their vegetables, or get a haircut.

    2) Performing necessary medical treatments on person who is not in a position to consent: Probably the second strongest case set, but what I mean is someone who has drank far, far, far too much, has blacked out and is suffering alcohol poisoning. They need their stomach pumped, right? They are not capable of even saying yes if they are passed out drunk, and certainly not of sound mind and judgment. They are not consenting to having their stomach pumped, but I think it is intuitively the case that the doctors are obligated to provide the necessary treatment and in doing so they must violate bodily autonomy.

    3) Cases of benign paternalism: Perhaps a weaker class, but there is a decent argument that, say, quickly tackling a guy who is unbeknownst to him that he is about to walk off a cliff is permissible if not obligatory. In the tackling, you are clearly interfering with his bodily autonomy (you may even injure him) but in light that you are saving his life I think don’t a decent case for this action being morally impermissible can be made.

    4) Minor individual violations, major group benefits: I’m not at all committed to this one, but I think it is interesting and maybe a case can be made. I think, maybe, something like mandating vaccines because of herd immunity might be warranted in some contexts.

    Now, these might not be exactly analogous to abortion, but that is not the main point I driving it at here and I’m not claiming that they are. It does no good to object that men’s bodily autonomy is also conditioned in the above ways because that simply raises the problem why should a women’s autonomy be absolute vis-à-vis abortion but not absolute in the above cases. The main point I am driving at is we don’t treat bodily autonomy as an absolute right that can not be conditioned by other values. I think if these examples are accepted, something beside bodily autonomy needs to be added to the case to explain why abortion is a place where bodily autonomy should be always respected regardless of other considerations. Finally, I’m not claiming the above are the same exact level of violation, but if bodily autonomy is absolute it should never be able to be conditioned any degree.

    In regards to why a woman consenting to have PiV sex does consent to the risk of pregnancy and what that entails is different from being raped while being drunk, meaning getting drunk does not entail the risk of rape, and thereby “consenting” to rape. I think there are two fundamental reasons why the two are not analogous. First, a woman having PiV sex, while fertile and not using protection* necessarily carries a risk of getting pregnant. The risk is intrinsic to the act itself. You cannot have PiV sex unprotected while both partners are fertile and not risk pregnancy. You quite obviously can get drunk without risking being raped (you get drunk alone). Secondly, and more importantly, there are two volitional acts in the drunk case separated by several moments in time. A woman consents to get drunk and a man then wills to violate her. Getting drunk is the act the women herself engages in and this not sufficient to entail a risk of rape because rape occurs as the result only of the man’s will. In the pregnancy case, there is either a shared volitional act, or two volitional acts that occur at the same time. The consent of the women to have unprotected PiV sex while fertile is sufficient to place her at risk of pregnancy. In short, choosing to get drunk is neither necessary nor sufficient to risk rape, whereas having PiV sex unprotected while both partners are fertile is both necessary and sufficient to risk pregnancy. This stronger connection in the pregnancy case among will-act-outcome is why the two cases should be considered differently in a moral context.

    *insert necessary commentary about how using protection mitigates but does not remove the risk of pregnancy.

  367. says

    Important note: PP v. Casey was decided (mostly) wrong and it has led to a horrible situation in which a women’s right to choose is de facto banned in far, far, far too many places (one is too many) and if not de facto banned so burdened that it really, really hurts women of limited means. I hate that. Abortion laws in this country need to be liberalized not made more restrictive. The vast majority of the laws passed post-Casey are unjust.

  368. says

    1. No contraception is 100% effective, so ALL hetero sex between fertile individuals entail the risk of pregnancy. The only question is how large is the risk.

    2. You still have explained where the obligation to the fetus comes from.

    We are left to conclude that it comes from “sluts must pay for their sluttery.”

    Fuck you.

  369. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    @ michael #916

    1. Pregnant people are not children lacking necessary abstract reasoning capabilities and fuck you sideways for even trying to draw that analogy.

    Of course there a whole bunch of trivial examples in the same vein. I.e. parents making their kids take baths, eat their vegetables, or get a haircut.

    You need to get your head out of your ass and stop equating bodily autonomy with being able to do whateverthefuck you want. I have no fucks to give if they seem like the same thing to you. Bodily autonomy has a very specific meaning in the context of human rights and your subjective impression of what the words mean colloquially when you use them together is utterly irrelevant.

  370. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    You quite obviously can get drunk without risking being raped (you get drunk alone).

    And this? Fuck you. If you get drunk while not alone you’re risking rape? You are a piece of shit.

  371. Amphiox says

    re @916;

    1) and 2) are cases of an individual with a reduced capacity to provide their own informed consent. Are you suggesting that a pregnant woman, as a sole result of being pregnant, has reduced her capacity to provide informed consent?

    1), 2), and 3) are all also cases where the presumed violation of individual bodily autonomy is done for the sake of and benefit of the individual whose autonomy is violated in the process. The violation is not done for the sake and benefit of a third party. In what way then does forcing a woman who does not wish to to carry a pregnancy to term benefit that woman, individually?

    3) and 4) are all also cases where the terms “benign” and “minor”. The DEGREE of violation of individual autonomy must be SMALL relative to the benefit to be justifiable. In what way could forcing a woman to bear the physical risks and burdens of a 9 month pregnancy be considered SMALL?

    You may tackle a stranger who appears to be walking off a cliff, but you are far less justified in trying to shoot him in the leg. You are even less justified in chaining him to his bed just because you are afraid that he is going to accidentally walk off a cliff.

    You should also note that we do NOT, in fact, mandate vaccinations for the general public. Even something as minor as vaccination and as beneficial, is not *compelled*. Furthermore, the PRIME benefit of vaccination is protection of the individual, not herd immunity. Herd immunity is a beneficial secondary effect, but the REASON compulsory vaccination might be justifiable in some cases is for the individual’s OWN benefit.

    I think if these examples are accepted, something beside bodily autonomy needs to be added to the case to explain why abortion is a place where bodily autonomy should be always respected regardless of other considerations.

    Except of course that abortion is NOT a place where bodily autonomy is always respected regardless of other considerations as it is. If a woman’s life is threatened by her pregnancy, and she is not mentally capable of providing informed consent, whether from age or impairment, a surrogate decision -maker CAN consent on her behalf to an abortion even if she herself expresses a desire to continue with the pregnancy, for example. If a child became pregnant through abuse, she may be too young to fully comprehend what is happening to her, and a decision to abort may well be made without her consent.

    All the reasons that apply to the examples you have given ALREADY apply to the abortion issue also. NONE of them are sufficient grounds to compel an adult woman of sound mind and body to carry an unwanted pregnancy to term.

  372. Amphiox says

    You quite obviously can get drunk without risking being raped (you get drunk alone).

    Notwithstanding the risk that if you get drunk alone and pass out, someone may come upon you/break into whereever you are, etc later while in that state and rape you, how is choosing to get drunk alone any different from having sex at a time when you think you’re not fertile, but actually are? Because occult fertility is the biological reality of the human condition.

    Incidentally, the actual risk of becoming pregnant per act of unprotected intercourse for humans is 2%. Depending on the location, the risk of being raped after getting drunk can easily be higher than that.

  373. says

    Michael, your failure to stick the flounce is hardly unexpected, however, why not try something novel?

    First, go and read the definitions of bodily autonomy until you actually comprehend what those words mean, and what the concept means, rather than insisting on your own definition. This would demonstrate intelligence, a willingness to learn, and that you do have comprehensive faculties.

    Second, instead of showing up again and tossing bullshit like there’s no tomorrow, read and comprehend replies to your previous bullshit, and before tossing more shit, sit until you actually comprehend them, then spend time thinking before you type. Ta.

  374. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    MKM 916 & 917, not one link to third party evidence, which means backing your inane fuckwitted opinions with reality. Your screeds are therefore ignored as they should be, as nothing but hot air.
    Your challenge has been, to provide conclusive evidence, from legitimate sources outside of yourself, that the fetus is more of a human being with more rights than the woman carrying it. Who is a full human being with full human rights.

  375. says

    @Inaji

    “First, go and read the definitions of bodily autonomy until you actually comprehend what those words mean”

    You mean this from wiki:

    “Bodily integrity is the inviolability of the physical body and emphasises the importance of personal autonomy and the self-determination of human beings over their own bodies.”

    Or do mean the material from Standford which goes over the richer notions of autonomy?

    http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/personal-autonomy/

    Both of which I have read. You do you mean Nussbaum’s definition? which includes ““Being able to move freely from place to place; being able to be secure against violent assault…having opportunities for sexual satisfaction and for choice in matters of reproduction.” (Sex and Justice). I think this definition begs the question FWIW.

    If we take bodily integrity to mean the the physical body is inviolable regardless of context or other factors, I do not think that principle should be accepted on a normative basis, for the cases I have cited. Now it very well might be the case that a women’s bodily autonomy is so strong in the case of abortion that it does defeat any other consideration and a women’s choice must be unconditioned. But that is not the same thing as saying a women’s bodily autonomy is so so strong that it is not a question to wonder if her choice can be conditioned.

  376. says

    And I don’t see how bodily autonomy meaning that “the inviolability of the physical body…” does not entail the always condition. If the physical body has the property of inviolability, this means that the body must be secure form violation or trespass. Something is not secure from trespass or violation if there is ever a case in which a trespass/violation is warranted. I guess one can argue that my examples above are not violations of bodily autonomy because they don’t count as violations or transgressions against the body. But then one would assume the argumentative debt to explain why the same physical act (like medical intervention) are violation against the body in case of say an adult man, of sound mind and judgment, being forced to receive an operation but it is not a violation of the body if a young child is compelled to receive the same operation.

    But, I think it is far better to say that while the body and its integrity are of extreme importance the body is not inviolable.

  377. Amphiox says

    But then one would assume the argumentative debt to explain why the same physical act (like medical intervention) are violation against the body in case of say an adult man, of sound mind and judgment, being forced to receive an operation but it is not a violation of the body if a young child is compelled to receive the same operation.

    Go look up, learn, and understand the concept of informed consent.

  378. Amphiox says

    By the way, it is completely possible that an operation forced upon the body of a young child COULD BE a violation of that child’s autonomy in the same way that such an operation forced upon an adult man of sound mind and judgment is.

    Depending on the nature of the illness and the operation under consideration, some young children DO possess the level of mature judgment needed to provide their own informed consent, and those children are fully capable of providing their own informed consent, or refusal of consent, to a medical procedure. Each individual case must be assessed individually, taking both child and procedure into account.

    It is not age that determines the ability to consent, it is judgment.

  379. Amphiox says

    And I don’t see how bodily autonomy meaning that “the inviolability of the physical body…” does not entail the always condition.

    Is it valid to call Fort Knox “impregnable”? Alcatraz “inescapable”? The Denver Broncos’ offense “unstoppable”? The holocaust “unimagineably (evil)”? Tom Brady “unflappable”?

    In common usage, words like impregnable, inescapable, inviolable, etc, do NOT require the “always” condition. They simply have to be “nearly always”.

    That’s just the way the English language works. If you don’t like it, you are free to try to convince the english speaking world to adopt a different language. Good luck with that.

  380. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    MKM, not one iota of evidence showing the fetus is more of human being, and with more rights, than the woman carrying it, who is fully human and has full human rights. What’s the matter? You prefer to wank about trivialities, and ignore the elephant in the room. Because that elephant refutes your sorry bit of wankery?

  381. Maureen Brian says

    michael kellymiecielica,

    I don’t think you’re ever going to grasp this concept of bodily autonomy. We have been trying to keep this discussion to one specific example of a point at which it matters and where there does seem to be a ridiculous amount of confusion – confusion which can only be exacerbated by people who feel the need to talk about falling off cliffs and kids getting haircuts. Anything rather than concentrate on the matter at hand, eh?

    It would, perhaps, be helpful to you to consider two questions. First, provided that I am conscious to whom should I be expected to cede the management of my own body? Second, how did that person acquire that authority and where did it come from?

    When you drill down that far you come up against the realisation that you’re thinking elders or doctors or authority figures of some sort. You are, in fact, back in the apples and snakes department and using a religious argument. It doesn’t make sense scientifically and it is anathema to an atheist.

    Why do you expect to get away with it here?

  382. Amphiox says

    I mean geez, MKM, just read your own post. You said adult man “of sound mind and JUDGMENT”. Well a young child by dint of immaturity may not have the JUDGMENT to make the decision. The child’s autonomy right still exists and is respected, it is just that a surrogate decision maker is given the power to make such choices on the child’s behalf. That decision maker is obligated to choose for the child’s benefit and based on what the child WOULD HAVE CHOSEN for him or herself if he or she had possessed the judgment needed to make that choice, to the best of that surrogate’s ability to discern what that choice would have been.

    And speaking as a surgeon who obtains such consent I can tell you flat out that I am not allowed to assume that every child is unable to give this consent directly. I have to speak to and assess each child as an individual to determine if they are or are not able to make that decision. Similarly I am not allowed to just assume that the parent or next of kin is automatically the surrogate decision maker. I have to speak to that person and assess whether they are suitable as the surrogate decision maker, to the best of my professional ability, before I can obtain that consent.

    Now, flipping this analogy back to the abortion issue, in what manner does being pregnant render a woman no longer of sound mind or judgment to make the decision regarding abortion for herself? In what way does being pregnant infantilize a woman to the point where she needs a surrogate decision maker? And why should the state take it upon itself to be that surrogate, which is what the state is doing if it restricts abortion access.

  383. says

    Maureen Brian:

    When you drill down that far you come up against the realisation that you’re thinking elders or doctors or authority figures of some sort.

    Male authority figures. It’s the good old patriarchy again, why those silly, ditzy wimmin, girls, really, can’t expect them to know what’s best for themselves. Nope.

  384. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Inaji:

    Well, of course it is only male authority figures. After all, when women get pregnant, they lose the ability to make rational decisions and have to be protected by their owner.

    (These abortion threads are so fucking tedious and repetitious.)

  385. says

    @Amphiox

    “Go look up, learn, and understand the concept of informed consent.”

    Informed consent, which is a different concept from bodily autonomy and requires different things to fulfill, is not the basis for the pro-choice argument I have been attacking. If you want to say a women always has the right to choice because she must always give informed consent because she is a person, good! That shifts the right away from the “inviolability of the physical body…” into a far richer notions which for a different set of arguments than mere bodily autonomy. This richer set of notions may indeed override any other consideration and the women’s right to choice is absolute not because of bodily autonomy but because she is a person. This is a far different set of argument then I was attacking. I have given this topic a great deal of thought over the last few days, no longer think my first position is the correct one. I no longer think that there is a reasonable restriction on abortion and in any case I think what people want to secure via bodily autonomy can be secured in other ways. I’ve never actually given the self defense argument at lot of thought but I spent sometime last night thinking it over. I cannot not give up deeper commitments (I’m a Hobbesian) I have while denying that argument. I’m only now pursuing this argument about bodily autonomy because I find the general topic interesting.

    anyway:

    “I mean geez, MKM, just read your own post. You said adult man “of sound mind and JUDGMENT”.

    This is like the above, if this is the move you are going to make than you move beyond the mere inviolability of the body and this require something more robust than the definition of bodily autonomy I mentioned above.

    “The child’s autonomy right still exists and is respected, it is just that a surrogate decision maker is given the power to make such choices on the child’s behalf.”

    I fail to see how the autonomy of the child is in fact respected when they are denied the power to self-direct their actions.

    “Is it valid to call Fort Knox “impregnable”?

    Was it valid to call the Titanic “unsinkable?”

    No it is not valid.

    “In common usage, words like impregnable,”

    we are not discussing the common usage, we are discussing usage of the world in law/politics/ethics.

  386. says

    Michael:
    I see you’re back and must have missed my comment to you. Although you could easily scroll back up and read it (it’s #891), I’ll repost it just for you:

    michael:

    http://www.psych.upenn.edu/~mfarah/Neuroethics-Personhood.pdf
    The earliest explicit definition of personhood came
    from the sixth-century philosopher Boethius, who equated
    a person with “an individual substance of a rational nature”
    (Singer 1994). Cognitive capacities such as rationality have
    remained important features of most subsequent accounts
    of personhood,
    1
    including the two most influential accounts
    of personhood, those of John Locke and Emmanuel Kant.
    For Locke, there were three essential characteristics of
    personhood: rationality, self-awareness, and the linkage of
    this self-awareness by memory across time and space. In
    his words, a person is “an intelligent being that has reason
    and reflection, and can consider itself the same thinking
    being in different times and places” (Locke, 1997). Kant’s
    formulation also includes intelligence, but mainly for its
    role in enabling one to act morally. At the heart of moral
    action, for Kant, was the ability to distinguish between
    persons and things and treat them accordingly. Whereas
    things may be valued because they are desirable or useful,
    persons have an intrinsic value, in Kant’s terms a “dignity.”
    In his words “ every rational being exists as an end in
    himself and not merely as a means to be arbitrarily used
    by this or that will . . . rational beings are called persons
    inasmuch as their nature already marks them out as ends
    in themselves” (Kant 1948)

    {…}

    A few other contemporary definitions of personhood
    will be quoted here for the sake of indicating their funda-
    mental similarities, both in the human traits singled out as
    relevant to personhood and in the difficulty of translating
    any of these sets of traits into operational criteria for decid-
    ing which entities are persons and which not. From Tooley
    (1972): something is a person “if it possesses the concept of a
    self as a continuing subject of experiences and other mental
    states, and believes that it is itself such a continuing entity.”
    From Feinberg (1980,189): “persons are those beings who
    are conscious, have a concept and awareness of themselves,
    are capable of experiencing emotions, can reason and ac-
    quire understanding, can plan ahead, can act on their plans,
    and can feel pleasure and pain.” From Englehardt (1986,
    107): “What distinguishes persons is their capacity to be
    self-conscious, rational, and concerned with worthiness of
    blame or praise.” From Rorty (1988, 43): “A person is
    …(a)
    capable of being directed by its conception of its own iden-
    tity and what is important to that identity, and (b) capable of
    interacting with others, in a common world. A person is that
    interactive member of a community, reflexively sensitive to
    the contexts of her activity, a critically reflective inventor of
    the story of her life.

    [...]

    Please note that there is no definition of ‘personhood’ that is agreed upon universally. That said, there are several qualities of personhood that can be agreed upon. How many of the various qualities of personhood does a fetus possess?

  387. says

    @Tony

    It is now moot because of what I just said, but the criteria I was thinking of was no where as robust as Kant’s or even Locke’s. I was thinking more along the lines of fetuses can feel pain and have brain waves after a certain point and are thus worthy of moral consideration.

  388. says

    Ogvorbis:

    (These abortion threads are so fucking tedious and repetitious.)

    Yes, they are. Different day, same idiots.

    Hey, Michael! I suggest you read Misogyny: The World’s Oldest Prejudice by Jack Holland. You’ll recognize all the shit you keep happily ingesting, then spewing back out. Perhaps it will wake you up a bit. Maybe.

  389. rq says

    the women’s right to choice is absolute not because of bodily autonomy but because she is a person

    Uh, a woman has bodily autonomy because she is a person. An individual. With rights. Bodily autonomy being one of them.

  390. says

    the women’s right to choice is absolute not because of bodily autonomy but because she is a person

    Jesus Fuck. A woman has bodily autonomy because she is a person, you flaming pile of stupid!

    I am my body. You want to make a dualistic hash out of things, but it won’t work. “I” do not not reside separately from my body.

  391. says

    @rq

    “Uh, a woman has bodily autonomy because she is a person. An individual. With rights. Bodily autonomy being one of them.”

    1st of all let me just repeat this:

    I no longer think that there is a reasonable restriction on abortion and in any case I think what people want to secure via bodily autonomy can be secured in other ways.

    Let me say this as clear as I can to upend any confusion: My initial position I have took in this thread is wrong. I cannot sustain it within my own philosophical framework and I now agree that a woman’s right to choose is absolute and cannot be conditioned for any reason, irrespective of the (possible) personhood status of the fetus.

    The only thing I am now disagreeing on is the basis on which that right is grounded. I don’t think bodily autonomy is the proper basis because I still don’t think that right is absolute. I now think the proper basis for this is the right to self-defense. If you wish to discuss this please take into account that I admitted I was wrong and am now pursuing a different line of arguments.

  392. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    The only thing I am now disagreeing on is the basis on which that right is grounded. I don’t think bodily autonomy is the proper basis because I still don’t think that right is absolute. I now think the proper basis for this is the right to self-defense.

    She has the right to defend herself because the fetus is violating….

    wait for it…

    HER BODILY AUTONOMY

    Jesus fuck dude.

  393. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Not to mention the fact that multiple people in this very thread have already described the interaction between pregnant person and fetus as self-defense and yet you seem to think that you just thought of it all by yourself. Good grief.

  394. rq says

    I don’t think bodily autonomy is the proper basis because I still don’t think that right is absolute. I now think the proper basis for this is the right to self-defense.

    You go ahead and let me know when someone comes along and tries to force you into doing something detrimental to your body, and explain to me how you go about separating those two concepts. If you don’t have bodily autonomy, then why are you defending yourself from someone else?
    Because I’m pretty sure I have a right to self-defense because I have bodily autonomy. Self-defense being the way in which I attempt to maintain my bodily autonomy, which is my right as a person.

  395. says

    MKM
    Your ‘argument’ is that
    a) a fetus is a person (you’re wrong, and this is a stupid position, but we’ll leave that aside for now)
    b) because of a), a woman has a moral obligation to donate her body to the support of said fetus, and should be compelled to do so by law, so long as you deem the chance of her dying to be acceptably low (which makes you an asshole, but we’ll leave that aside for now).

    Given those premises, there is no possible argument for why you should not be compelled by law to donate your kidney, blood, bone marrow, and possibly a lung to anyone who has need and is compatible. Do you support a law requiring any compatible donor to provide this support to anyone suffering a potentially lethal ailment that would benefit from it? If not, what is your justification for this?

  396. says

    michael:
    Before I go any further: THANK YOU for this:

    Let me say this as clear as I can to upend any confusion: My initial position I have took in this thread is wrong. I cannot sustain it within my own philosophical framework and I now agree that a woman’s right to choose is absolute and cannot be conditioned for any reason, irrespective of the (possible) personhood status of the fetus.

    Now, as for this:

    The only thing I am now disagreeing on is the basis on which that right is grounded. I don’t think bodily autonomy is the proper basis because I still don’t think that right is absolute. I now think the proper basis for this is the right to self-defense. If you wish to discuss this please take into account that I admitted I was wrong and am now pursuing a different line of arguments.

    The right to self-defense is a strong basis to support a woman’s right to an abortion.
    However, so is the right to bodily autonomy. That is a right that every human person has and you’ve not provided a scenario where infringing on that right is justified.

    I am still curious what qualities of personhood you feel a fetus may have, but as you say, that’s moot for the purpose of this discussion. I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts, but the Thunderdome is the best place for that (it is one of the two open threads at Pharyngula where anything can be discussed; the Lounge is the other, but for topics that could be contentious, the ‘Dome is the better choice).

  397. says

    @Inaji

    “woman has bodily autonomy because she is a person”

    Yes, yes she does. As does everyone. And yes bodily autonomy is rooted in being a person. She also has a many other rights which may be indexed to bodily autonomy or they may not be but they are rooted in personhood. As Informed Consent brings in more things to consider then the alleged inviolability of the body it is a richer notion. That was my point.

    As I have stated repeatedly I do NOT think anyone’s bodily autonomy is absolute. I DO think the right to self-defense is absolute for everyone. As several people argued above it can be construed (correctly in my view) that abortion is act of self-defense. I am only now disagreeing with the basis not the content.

    “You want to make a dualistic hash out of things, but it won’t work. “I” do not not reside separately from my body.”

    Nothing I said depends on dualism.

  398. says

    One more time, for the flaming bonfire of stupid:

    I am my body. You want to make a dualistic hash out of things, but it won’t work. “I” do not not reside separately from my body.

    I AM MY BODY. I ALONE, BEING GRANTED FULL BODILY AUTONOMY, HAVE THE RIGHT TO SAY WHAT HAPPENS TO MY BODY. The reasons for any decision I may make in that regard are none of your fucking business, nor the business of anyone else, unless I decide to include them in said decisions.

    Jesus Christ fucked a duck, the stupid is just too much to bear.

  399. says

    Tony:

    The right to self-defense is a strong basis to support a woman’s right to an abortion.
    However, so is the right to bodily autonomy.

    Aaaarrggh, no, no, NO. Unless one has bodily autonomy in the first place, there is no right to self defense. FFS.

  400. says

    @Seven of Mine

    “She has the right to defend herself because the fetus is violating….”

    the process of satisfying her desires and all such future desire satisfaction.

    ” Not to mention the fact that multiple people in this very thread have already described the interaction between pregnant person and fetus as self-defense and yet you seem to think that you just thought of it all by yourself. Good grief.”

    Oh no, the thought is isn’t original to me. I even went on to say this in a future post “As several people argued above it can be construed…”

    I gave a lot of thought to that argument last night in the chance to think it through.

  401. says

    And Tony, to clarify, take an example from when slavery was accepted. A slave was not granted bodily autonomy, and had no right to self defense because of that right being denied.

  402. says

    The right to self-defense for me is not rooted in being embodied or being a body. It is rooted in being able to satisfy my desires now and in the future.

    In a counterfactual world in which the mind was severable from the body the right to protect your ability to fulfill your desire would still be absolute. Now it isn’t the case the world is such that mind is separate from the body, there is only body I am my body, what I am protecting when I defend my life is my ability to avoid pain/enjoy pleasure not merely my kidney.

  403. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    the process of satisfying her desires and all such future desire satisfaction.

    1) Fuck you.

    B) FROM INSIDE HER BODY

    III) Fuck you.

  404. rq says

    the process of satisfying her desires and all such future desire satisfaction.

    Yes, in other words, her bodily autonomy. Which she has due to being a person.

    The right to self-defense for me is not rooted in being embodied or being a body. It is rooted in being able to satisfy my desires now and in the future.

    That second part there? That’s bodily autonomy you’re talking about! The right to making decisions about what you do! Bodily autonomy is the right of a person; you have the right to bodily autonomy by function of being a person! Being a body has nothing to do with it.
    You are not a body, you have a body. The body is yours, and as a person, you may decide what happens to that body. Including an abortion.

  405. says

    Inaji:

    Aaaarrggh, no, no, NO. Unless one has bodily autonomy in the first place, there is no right to self defense. FFS.

    Shit. For some reason I never connected the two until now.
    Thank you for correcting me.

  406. rq says

    To protect my future desire satisfaction.

    The pursuit of which is your bodily autonomy.

  407. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    GUYS GUYS GUYS! If I use a different combination of letters and syllables to identify a concept, it’s a TOTALLY DIFFERENT CONCEPT.

    Jumping Jesus on a pie plate, this guy.

  408. rq says

    Because you supported dualism! You’re trying to separate the person from the body. If I am a person, I have a body and I have bodily autonomy. You can’t separate the two, the person from the body. Right here:

    The right to self-defense for me is not rooted in being embodied or being a body.

    Your right to self-defense is rooted in being a person embodied in a body. Person being a key word here. A person being one with bodily autonomy by virtue of the fact of having a body!!!

  409. says

    At this point I think it’s safe to say that michael’s contributions are mostly the result of reflexive ego protection. Sure, he was wrong about almost everything he said, but there must be just one little thing that he was right about.

    There, there, michael’s ego. It’ll be all right.

  410. says

    @rq

    “The pursuit of which is your bodily autonomy.”

    No it is. I gave a definition above of what I mean when I say bodily autonomy.

    Here is it s again:

    “Bodily integrity is the inviolability of the physical body and emphasises the importance of personal autonomy and the self-determination of human beings over their own bodies.”

    What does that have to do with desire satisfaction directly? We could be creatures which didn’t have desires as is commonly understood, and this could still be a guiding principle, whereas the conception of self-defense I’m using couldn’t be. Conversely, we could be creatures that lack a body but have desires in which case my conception of self-defense would still apply.

    That we so happen to be creatures who are bodies and who have desires may, in practice, make no real difference. But conceptually they can be, and probably should be separated.

  411. Amphiox says

    KM, how exactly do you expect to be able to satisfy future desire satisfaction without a body?

    Re#959;

    Perhaps that is because your stated positions on this issue have been utterly incoherent? Perhaps you should have, once again, actually THOUGHT about the issue before blabbing nonsense onto the page?

  412. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    As I have stated repeatedly I do NOT think anyone’s bodily autonomy is absolute.

    Well, we think you are wrong. Checkmate. You lose.

  413. ajb47 says

    michael kellymiecielica @954

    The right to self-defense for me is not rooted in being embodied or being a body. It is rooted in being able to satisfy my desires now and in the future.

    You really don’t want to admit that women have bodily autonomy/integrity, do you? Or do you always debate using whatever definitions of terms you want to use at any given time?

    Abortion should be legal at all times but not because of bodily autonomy or integrity, because of self-defense, but not defense of the woman’s body, her defense of her ability to satisfy her desires now and in the future.

    I really get the feeling you are looking for some kind of a Gotcha! you can use to force women to be less than human or the fetus more than human.

  414. Amphiox says

    Even if one alleges the right to self defence in general is not rooted in having a body, there is an important subset of the right to self defence that is. That would be the right to defend one’s BODY from harm.

  415. says

    The right to self-defense for me is not rooted in being embodied or being a body.

    Uh huh. So, if someone came at you with a knife, you’d be fine with them stabbing and slashing your body, because your right to self defense lies elsewhere.

    You believe in shit like souls, heaven, and angels, don’t ya?

  416. rq says

    Bodily integrity is the inviolability of the physical body and emphasises the importance of personal autonomy and the self-determination of human beings over their own bodies.

    By pursuing your future satisfaction, you are, in fact, undergoing the process of self-determination – by using your personal autonomy on your body which you have as a person. Without this bodily integrity (also known as: bodily autonomy), you cannot pursue your future satisfactions and all other desires you mention in your comments. We are not hypothetical beings without bodies and/or desires. You can’t separate the two.
    Your bodily autonomy and its inviolability is what allows you to defend yourself, because without that bodily autonomy in your own, self-determining hands, you cannot pursue your future desires and satisfactions and wathavyus.
    And it’s exactly the same bodily autonomy that allows a woman (or other pregnant person) to defend herself from an intruder (also known as: an abortion!).
    Seriously.

  417. Amphiox says

    MKM, if you insist that bodily autonomy, self defence, and the right to future desire satisfaction are in fact three separate things, as opposed to three aspects of the same thing, do you not realize that a woman’s right to abortion access can easily be, and is, grounded in ALL THREE SIMULTANEOUSLY?

  418. says

    Conversely, we could be creatures that lack a body but have desires in which case my conception of self-defense would still apply.

    Proposing counterfactuals that violate the laws of physics is not convincing. Some sort of substrate is required for a mind and desires.

  419. rq says

    do you not realize that a woman’s right to abortion access can easily be, and is, grounded in ALL THREE SIMULTANEOUSLY?

    What’s more, at any time of her choosing!

  420. says

    @965

    “KM, how exactly do you expect to be able to satisfy future desire satisfaction without a body?”

    In practice? it’s impossible we are bodies.

    But within the conceptual framework, yes I think they should be separated and can be separated. Desire satisfaction is ultimately a mental state, right? While it is not the case the body and the mind are separable, there is no logical necessity that mind must be identical with the body, even through factually the mind = body. I think this allows us to use “mental” talk where it might better to get at the underlying issue.

    I think the definition I gave for bodily autonomy does indeed preclude the cases I brought up if accepted. One way around this difficulty is take the path I have been taking by switching what we care about from a person’s body to a person’s desire satisfaction (even through practically because of the type of creature we are there might be not much difference) as it a lot more understandable of making sense of children-as-agents-in-waiting if we don’t think in terms of a child’s autonomy as being expressed not in control of their body but as rational desire satisfaction.

  421. says

    michael:

    The right to self-defense for me is not rooted in being embodied or being a body. It is rooted in being able to satisfy my desires now and in the future.

    We are all human beings.
    We all have bodies.
    We all have the right to self-defense.
    Why do we have the right to defend ourselves from harm?
    Inaji’s comment @953 illustrates why the right to self defense is rooted in the absolute right to bodily autonomy.

    “why are you defending yourself from someone else?”

    To protect my future desire satisfaction.

    That’s bizarre. You’re not defending yourself because it’s your body, you don’t wish to be harmed, and no one has the right to do anything to your body that you don’t consent to?

    Denial of bodily autonomy has led to people being tortured:

    The UN Convention Against Torture defines torture as “…the intentional infliction of severe physical or mental pain or suffering for purposes such as obtaining information or a confession, or punishing, intimidating or coercing someone.” Torture is always illegal. “No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.”

    raped:

    Rape is a type of sexual assault usually involving sexual intercourse, which is initiated by one or more persons against another person without that person’s consent.

    and enslaved:

    Slavery refers to a condition in which individuals are owned by others, who control where they live and at what they work.

  422. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    I gave a definition above of what I mean when I say bodily autonomy.

    Knock it the fuck off with this fucking infantile bullshit. What YOU mean when you say ‘bodily autonomy’ means EXACTLY NOTHING if it doesn’t match what EVERYONE ELSE understands the term to mean. Words do not mean what YOU THINK they mean, they mean what other people understand them to mean when they read/hear them.

    If you mean X when you say a word or phrase that everyone else understands to mean Y, you are utterly failing to communicate coherently.

  423. says

    @971

    I said this a few times already. Let me repeat it:

    Let me say this as clear as I can to upend any confusion: My initial position I have took in this thread is wrong. I cannot sustain it within my own philosophical framework and I now agree that a woman’s right to choose is absolute and cannot be conditioned for any reason, irrespective of the (possible) personhood status of the fetus.

    and this:

    The only thing I am now disagreeing on is the basis on which that right is grounded.

    so yes.

  424. maddog1129 says

    @ Maureen Brian #905

    The thread has again galloped ahead faster than I can read, but thank you for your post/link

    maddog1129 @ 903,

    What Carlie says was wonderfully sarky and, as she knows, represents the state of confusion the US is getting itself into – where the right to an abortion, or rather to make that decision privately and without political interference, is legally protected but enforcing that right is being made ever more difficult.

    By contrast, you might like to see this page from bpas, one of the two main abortion providers* in the UK – an outline of the thinking process their trained counsellor would help you through, if you’d not already decided, all with a view to making wanted abortions happen as swiftly as possible and under the supervision of a specialist doctor.

    http://www.bpas.org/bpaswoman/pregnancy-choices

    * In the early days after legalisation, abortions were carried out within the National Health Service or, as had always been available to the rich whatever the law said, in private “nursing homes.” A review some years later showed that the quality of care / availability of service was very patchy. Here and there it was just plain godawful. Now the majority of elective abortions are performed by two non-profits, of which this is one. Medical emergencies would still be dealt with in an NHS hospital and by a senior obstetrician.

    Interesting history. OTOH, I guess I might feel leery about having only two major outlets for a particular medical service. OTOOH, absent the two non-profits, umbrella NHS would be only *one* outlet to look to for the service, so maybe that’s not as much of a problem as I might have thought at first glance. Are your two non-profits subjected to the same kind of harassment (e.g., picket gantlet) as USA providers are?

  425. says

    “Uh huh. So, if someone came at you with a knife, you’d be fine with them stabbing and slashing your body, because your right to self defense lies elsewhere.”

    I have a desire not to die and/or suffer that sort of death. I satisfy that desire by defending my self.

    @976

    “Knock it the fuck off with this fucking infantile bullshit. What YOU mean when you say ‘bodily autonomy’ means EXACTLY NOTHING if it doesn’t match what EVERYONE ELSE understands the term to mean. ”

    The definition I have been using was posted by others, it’s from wikipedia, and I gave a Standford link that goes over some of the difficulties.

  426. says

    michael:
    We get that.
    What you don’t get-for some reason-is that the right to self defense is grounded in your bodily autonomy. If you don’t have the right to determine what happens to your body, you don’t have the right to defend yourself from anyone.

  427. Amphiox says

    Re 977;

    What is the purpose of wanking on this when all rights are always grounded on multiple bases simultaneously?

  428. maddog1129 says

    @ Inaji #652

    Thanks for the link to “I’m Not Sorry.”

    I remember reading about a study, maybe 25-30 years ago, and I can’t recall now whether it was about people who chose abortion vs. people who chose to complete the pregnancy, or whether it was between the people who chose not to have children and those who chose to have children, but the upshot of the report was that each group of people was happy with their choice.

  429. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    I have a desire not to die and/or suffer that sort of death. I satisfy that desire by defending my self.

    The source of your personal impulse to defend yourself and the reason why society deems that you have the right to defend yourself are not the same thing.

  430. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    RE: 983

    Le horribad blockquotage… 1st line there is michael, lines 2 & 3 are me.

  431. A. Noyd says

    michael kellymiecielica (#943)

    The only thing I am now disagreeing on is the basis on which that right is grounded. I don’t think bodily autonomy is the proper basis because I still don’t think that right is absolute.

    But who said it was? Who framed it the way you’re framing it? I can’t find it. Your philosophical masturbation appears to be based on a strawman.

    (#959)

    first I get taken to task for alleging supporting dualism. Now I get taken to task for not supporting dualism.

    Yes, sorry about that. The echo chamber repairman is due by sometime tomorrow afternoon. You’ll have to treat us all as individuals till then. I hope you can manage.

  432. A. Noyd says

    Amphiox (#921)

    Furthermore, the PRIME benefit of vaccination is protection of the individual, not herd immunity. Herd immunity is a beneficial secondary effect, but the REASON compulsory vaccination might be justifiable in some cases is for the individual’s OWN benefit.

    Yes. Apparently my measles vaccination never took when I was a kid. I got to find this out via a titers test, not by contracting measles. Herd immunity protected me as an individual when my own vaccination failed.

    (#932)

    Now, flipping this analogy back to the abortion issue, in what manner does being pregnant render a woman no longer of sound mind or judgment to make the decision regarding abortion for herself?

    It galls me how anti-choice assholes like to go on about how responsible the woman is for her pregnancy, how obligated she is to her fetus, but then won’t let her make her own choices for dealing with the pregnancy or acting as the agent of the fetus. (The latter is also a major problem for women who do choose to give birth.)

  433. maddog1129 says

    @ Maureen Brian #905

    I forgot to add that the linked material at bpas seemed nicely person-oriented to me, helping the patient assess options in a rational way.

  434. Maureen Brian says

    maddoag1129,

    bpas has been subjected to campaigns of praying loudly outside their offices which on one occasion I know about got out of hand and involved harassment of people visiting the building. There has also been a hack of their computer systems and the threat to expose those who had been in contact. These were people ringing up about all sorts of things, not necessarily abortion. The hacker went to jail.

    In addition, there are a handful of politicians and a couple of newspapers which seem to be “out to get them” – triggering a lot of hot air and extra inspections but in the end without being able to establish that anything is being done wrong.

    The other main provider is Marie Stopes but I know less about their experience.

    The existence of these two non-profits doesn’t prevent anyone using a private doctor or the NHS – they just seem to able to produce a more accessible service using staff who actually want to be there. There have been one or two minor moments of chaos in the NHS with competing pressures, as on any busy hospital department.

  435. says

    Things are moving along here, but I’ll just pick up this one bit for a (quick?) comment:

    Informed consent, which is a different concept from bodily autonomy and requires different things to fulfill, is not the basis for the pro-choice argument I have been attacking.

    But it’s very relevant for the question of why sometimes we allow one person to make decisions on behalf of another person, like parents making medical decisions for their children. It’s because the child isn’t capable of making such decisions.

    Incidentally, this doesn’t abridge the bodily autonomy of the child, since the parent is supposed to act on the child’s behalf; as a guardian of their interests. As the child gains the ability to make decisions for themselves, the parents’ custodial role recedes.

    This even happens to some degree before complete autonomy. The child’s wishes is respected in proportion with their mental maturity. That’s because what’s in question isn’t whether children have bodily autonomy, but whether they’re capable of managing it themselves. The right still resides with the child, not with the parents.

    Ideally, the parents would always make the decision that the child itself would make if they had the mental capacity to do so. It doesn’t always work out that way, but that’s the principle that the practice is founded on.

  436. Valde says

    So on that TFA thread I have pasted the side effects of pregnancy approximately 10x, and 10x it has been completely ignored.

    Forced birthers have to ignore the damage that pregnancy does to a uterus owner – they have to pretend it does not exist, except as an abstract, low risk – otherwise, they will have to admit that what they are demanding of women is monstrous.

    Well, that and they believe that pregnancy is not something that uterus owners can do, it’s what uterus owners were MADE FOR.

    Kind of like how your easy bake oven is made for cooking pies. It doesn’t have a say in the matter. It’s just an object to be used and acted upon.

  437. Amphiox says

    Informed consent, which is a different concept from bodily autonomy and requires different things to fulfill, is not the basis for the pro-choice argument I have been attacking.

    Informed consent is 100% applicable, indeed essential, to the analogy YOU introduced to attack the pro-choice argument.

    If you are admitting that it is not relevant, then you are simply admitting that you yourself made an irrelevant argument.

  438. Amphiox says

    I don’t think bodily autonomy is the proper basis because I still don’t think that right is absolute.

    It doesn’t have to be absolute to be a proper basis. It only has to be sufficient to outweigh all the proposed concerns that are claimed to justify restricted a woman’s access to abortion.

    And it does that easily.

  439. says

    Well, that and they believe that pregnancy is not something that uterus owners can do, it’s what uterus owners were MADE FOR.

    Made by what or by whom? It’s really bizarre when you see atheists parroting this one.

    Kind of like how your easy bake oven is made for cooking pies. It doesn’t have a say in the matter. It’s just an object to be used and acted upon.

    Very much like that, yep. Textbook objectification.

  440. says

    SallyStrange:

    Made by what or by whom? It’s really bizarre when you see atheists parroting this one.

    Yeah, it really is.
    They’re dictionary atheists who refuse to think through the implications of their rejection of the god hypothesis. They act like “I don’t believe in god” is the end of rational thinking, without realizing that not believing in a god has a ripple effect on a host of other beliefs.

  441. A. Noyd says

    Amphiox (#994)

    It doesn’t have to be absolute to be a proper basis. It only has to be sufficient to outweigh all the proposed concerns that are claimed to justify restricted a woman’s access to abortion.

    I’m still trying to figure out whether anyone ever implied otherwise, as michael seems to think.

  442. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    This will be on page 3 before I get back.

    Then you better have a lot of free memory available. (dang, only 661 MB left).

  443. says

    Well, might as well get it flipped over, as I have no doubt Michael will be back later, with another mound of bullshit to toss at us, expecting us all to be dazzled.