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What is it about the word "choice" that you don’t understand?

I don’t follow the British popular press very closely, but Josie Cunningham must have done something truly evil.

To read Cunningham’s mentions on Twitter is to explore a world of medieval morality I didn’t think still existed in the UK. The "murdering cow" needs "locking up", you see. "It’s a mental institute you need," explains one man. One woman tells her to throw herself off a cliff, while a man named Warren patiently explains that, "someone needs to throw acid on you." "I sincerely hope this woman is flattened by a lorry," prays another. Women who’ve never met her call her an "ugly no good cunt," a "rank slut," who "doesn’t deserve the ability to conceive" and needs "a good hard kick in your piss flaps." Many talk erroneously about murdering babies or children, one woman asking if she can feel the 18-week-old foetus kicking inside her.

What did she do? She chose to state on television that she was pregnant and was going to get an abortion. She had a mix of good reasons — not wanting to be tied to the father, wanting to focus on her career — and bad reasons — her chosen career is to be a TV celebrity — but that doesn’t matter. The whole point of being pro-choice is that women get to make their own decisions about their own bodies. You can also have bad reasons for wanting to have a baby, but we shouldn’t also vilify women for making that choice (it’s a double-whammy: a single career woman who chooses to have a baby can also be vilified for selfishness and not fitting the maternal stereotype sufficiently well).

I don’t know much of anything about this woman, but if she wants to have an abortion, that’s her decision, not mine. And it doesn’t really matter why she wants it.

Comments

  1. atheistblog says

    Good way to start my morning reading this sick christian anti-abortion culture. Why are these christian people are so obsessed and possessed with this anti-abortion when the rest of the world behaves normal in this matter ?

  2. says

    While it being abortion certainly adds fuel, I’m inclined to think that the “outrage” is the combination of “I wouldn’t do this, so you shouldn’t be allowed to do it, either” and “You’re a public figure so the public gets to dictate your actions.” If she had announced getting some other elective procedure, I suspect that the hateful comments would have been similar.

  3. twas brillig (stevem) says

    Yes, it is HER decision, and nobody should care. BUT why ANNOUNCE it on TV??? Not meaning to imply that abortions are okay iff secret. It is the media’s fault; for prying into every aspect of every celebrity’s lives. When presented by such a widespread announcement, some audience members will go bonkers; THEN the media will play up the bonkers responses, etc. etc. never ending…

  4. burgundy says

    Why is her chosen career a bad reason to get an abortion? I guess you could argue that it’s a bad career to choose, but “having an abortion will help me achieve my career goals” seems like a pretty good reason to me. (To the extent that there even are such things as bad reasons to get an abortion, which I’m not at all sure of. The only ones that come to mind as being clearly bad also don’t seem like things people would actually do. If you get an abortion just to upset the father, that’s a bad reason because it’s motivated by cruelty, but I doubt anyone who would otherwise choose to continue a pregnancy would do that.)

  5. gc12847 says

    British people are generally pro-choice and abortion itself is not a particular controversial issue and is certainly not a partisan issue.

    However, I think people, while supporting the right to abortion, are shocked and angered when it is treated flippantly. Many people have been angered by the way she has done it, not the fact she has done it.

    If she had just decided to do it, and was relatively low profile about it, people wouldn’t care. I think it’s because people perceive her as doing it for the publicity.

    I don’t of course agree with some the comments people have put, which are wrong. But people react badly when angry I suppose, not that that makes it right.

    But generally, abortion is NOT an issue in the UK, and the majority of people are pro-choice or just don’t care. So this isn’t about people denying her choice.

  6. ajbjasus says

    As back story – according to the tabloids, this is the girl that persuaded the NHS to provide her with somewhat over the top breast enlargements and expensive dental work to help her meet her stated ambition to become a glamour model.

    The abortion and desire to appear on Big Brother ( which is a pretty sordid reality tv show) are playing into the tabloids’ agenda to stir up outrage about the mis-spending of NHS funds.

  7. gc12847 says

    Also, I think the media play it up more than it is. I don’t think that many people actually care. You’re always going to get religious people their mouths off and a some people jumping on the band-wagon, but that’s the same everywhere.

  8. The Mellow Monkey: Non-Hypothetical says

    twas brillig @ 3

    Yes, it is HER decision, and nobody should care. BUT why ANNOUNCE it on TV???

    Speaking about stigmatized identities/choices/experiences can help break down that stigma and provide support for others, as they see that they aren’t alone. Silence makes it easier to be divided and conquered, because there’s no mutual support and no shared connections and communication.

    I wish more people with some sort of public platform would speak out about their abortions.

  9. says

    Yay, victim blaming! Why couldn’t she just have shut up, right?

    Also here: We support choice as long as the women chosing wrong shut up.

    Additionally: Hey, she’s a vanity star so she had it coming.

    Finally: Its not that bad that she gets harrassed a little, after all thats only a minority opinion.

    Seriously, reading the first 8 replies here left me red hot fuming with anger. Angry enough to register to post after years of lurking. -_-

    PS: Bonus question: Point out the non-christian culture (alluded to in reply no.1) that is ok with public announcements of having an abortion.

  10. says

    They understand choice in general. In general means applied to men. They don’t understand choice in relation to women. We have as much choice, in their view, as they want to grant us, and we’re not to forget it.

    Seriously, reading the first 8 replies here left me red hot fuming with anger.

    Several of the comments here reflect the sense of entitlement to women’s bodies and lives that our culture perpetuates.

  11. davidnangle says

    Since I’m a raging wingnut, I have to register my glee that this fetus-citizen is receiving the liberty it deserves, so that it can stand on its own and work hard and succeed! No fetus deserves to be locked into the tyranny of some ‘mommy state’ that controls what nutrition it receives, what blood is filtered and how, what hormones it receives at certain times in its gestation… all at the dictator’s whims… Give it liberty!

  12. Amphiox says

    BUT why ANNOUNCE it on TV???

    Well that too is a choice, and there can be both good reasons and bad reasons for it. And in the end, those reasons don’t matter to anyone except her.

  13. says

    Are we not allowed to talk about abortion on TV now? Or is it only verboten to talk about one’s own decision to have an abortion? Would it be okay if she talked about it after the fact?

    The obsession with creating ever more humans continues to baffle me.

  14. unclefrogy says

    this one story does touch on a bunch of stuff. The story is more than just abortion choice. It is also how and when she announced her decision. It is easy to judge the reason as a shallow one but that is without any knowledge of her life at all. There is also the very public nature of the announcement, it was her choice but it also brings up privacy issues. There is also I admit . a kind of shock at this first one because of the very public nature of it, it is something that is usually advocated as a decision made by the individual woman with consultation with her doctor a private decision. She seems to be living in public we already know that real privacy is not that easy to maintain, it may be at this point in time largely an illusion so why would she fight it especially if you are pursuing a celebrity career.
    That it generated a lot of heated public negative comments is something that seems to becoming normal in this electronic connected always on world. The next time someone makes a similar decision public may not have the same effect.
    uncle frogy

  15. The Mellow Monkey: Non-Hypothetical says

    SallyStrange @ 15

    Are we not allowed to talk about abortion on TV now? Or is it only verboten to talk about one’s own decision to have an abortion? Would it be okay if she talked about it after the fact?

    As I’ve gathered from comments, in the UK “abortion itself is not a particular controversial issue”, so long as anyone who might have an abortion shuts the fuck up about it. If someone who can get pregnant–or gasp! IS pregnant!–should speak about it publicly, well, of course they’re going to be harassed and threatened and subject to misogynistic slurs. Sure, people can have abortions, but they need to be ashamed and silent, to assure everyone that they don’t utilize their bodily autonomy flippantly.

    (Thanks for the education on the topic, gc12847 @ 6!)

  16. Louis says

    An excuse to spew anti-woman hate, be a classist pissant, and complain about other people’s entirely immaterial-and-irrelevant-to-me life choices?

    LET ME AT IT!!!

    Or, you know, not.

    Bread and fucking circuses.

    Louis

    P.S. OFF SWITCHES ARE HARD. OTHER PEOPLE’S DIFFERENCES AND CHOICES THAT DON’T AFFECT ME IN ANY MEANINGFUL SENSE MAKE MY PEEPEE SOFT.

  17. atheistblog says

    @Avera Bregen

    Only christians and christian cultures are obsessed with fetus and pro-choice BS. Other than christian culture rest of the world doesn’t give that much F about abortion, first go and visit the rest of the world first before defending your christian culture.

  18. hexidecima says

    yup, we have more evidence that supposedly “pro-life” people are anything but that when it comes to people who don’t agree with them. Then they are as vicious and violent as anyone can be with no care about life at all.

  19. gc12847 says

    @17 I never said that these were my views or that I agreed with it or that I think it was justified, I was just stating why I think other people have reacted in a particular way.

    Also, I never said anything about women having to be quite. Women have gone on tv and spoken about getting abortions, including doing it for career reasons, and these have never caused a stir.

    Also, flippant was probably the wrong word to use. I think it’s the fact that people perceive that she is only doing it for the media attention, especially after the whole thing with the NHS funded best implant situation before. Several complaints have been from women who have had abortions themselves.

    Again, I haven’t said that I advocate any of this. I do believe it is her right to choose to have an abortion and if she wants to announce it on tv, I don’t really care as it has nothing to do with me.

  20. Kevin Kehres says

    Color me cynical.

    I had no idea who Josie Cunningham was before this. Now I know — she’s like Paris Hilton or “Snookie”. A person with no obvious talent other than the talent of making herself famous.

    Seems to me she succeeded beyond her wildest imaginings. One wonders why others haven’t gone before her. I sense an avalanche in the very near future.

    I think the announcement was calculated to garner exactly the type of response it got. “I don’t care what you say about me as long as you spell my name correctly.” If she wasn’t famous before — she’s famous now!

    However, oddly enough, I also think this might lead to a longer-term benefit. Not that I want every celebrity or celebrity wanna-be to announce their private medical decisions on television — but it’s going to continue to happen. And then we’ll become inured to it. Bored, even. I’m almost bored by it now.

    Frankly, I see this along the same lines of an athlete declaring himself to be gay (male, of course. Female athletes coming out is already no big surprise.) There was a little flurry of front-page media attention when the first few came out. Now, it barely rates a couple of paragraphs on page C6 — at least that’s where the last one I saw was reported (some college football player — don’t remember his name).

    Oh sure, there will continue to be the weeping and wailing and flailing about from the religi-nuts. But people will pay less and less attention to them.

    When it’s not front-page news or blog fodder, then you’ve won. Ho hum, another celebrity abortion.

    So, even though I think Cunningham had no thought in her head other than the calculus of celebrity; she may have done the pro-choice community an enormous favor.

  21. Loud - warm smiles do not make you welcome here says

    I’ve already had this out on Facebook with some of my fellow Brits. One person described it as ‘morally and ethically wrong’, another as ‘VILE’ (complete with ALL CAPS), and there were others slut-shaming her and also looks-shaming her (as she wanted to be a glamour model).

    Just par for the course unfortunately :(

  22. Gerry Delonzo says

    Just wondering if PZ believes in “choice” if the mother chooses to get an abortion in, say, the 38th week of pregnancy.

  23. says

    #24, Gerry Delonzo:

    Yes.

    Especially since the reason for the choice that late in pregnancy is almost always medical. But even if not, I do not have the right to oppose it.

  24. says

    and bad reasons — her chosen career is to be a TV celebrity

    This jumped out at me somewhat, and I feel it needs some qualification. I think I understand the gist of it – not having a baby because of the effect it might have on one’s appearance seems possibly shallow – but we don’t get to choose the world we live in.

    I don’t know much of anything about this woman, but if she wants to have an career in TV, that’s her decision, not mine.

  25. nrdo says

    Thankfully in the UK, it seems to be generally understood that fetuses aren’t people and rights don’t depend on the perceived value of the person asserting them, so asserting them in a public manner helps cement the perception of as “normal”. I also wouldn’t be so quick to assume she didn’t a least consider this; just because she looks and plays the starlet role doesn’t necessarily mean she’s stupid in her private reasoning.

    But you could also make a case that if you live in a community where the rights of your fellow women are under legal threat, publicizing an abortion *might* be unethical if you can reasonably expect that it would sway public opinion to restrict that right for people who don’t have the advantages of money and fame. It’s a moral dilemma that could vary based on circumstances.

  26. says

    Just wondering if PZ believes in “choice” if the mother chooses to get an abortion in, say, the 38th week of pregnancy.

    Do women have the right to induce labor or get c-sections, you mean? I think to onus is on you to explain why they wouldn’t have that right.

  27. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Just wondering if PZ believes in “choice” if the mother chooses to get an abortion in, say, the 38th week of pregnancy.

    Has that ever happened, except due to the onset of catastrophic medical issues?

    Can you name even one time?

  28. ajbjasus says

    The threats and reactions quoted in the OP are terrible. As many said previously her right to choose regarding the abortion should be sacrosanct. However, the UK press are stirring things up, because NHS funds appear to have been used to help her further her initial career as (by her own admission) a prostitute, and she appears to use each of these “controversies” to generate maximum, career enhancing publicity.

  29. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Can you name even one time?”

    Might want to do even the barest bit of research before saying something like this, don’t you think? Sorry to burst your bubble so publicly, but you deserved it.

  30. says

    Yesssss, with Gerry Delonzo going for the 9th month abortion and Gosnell I have a full BINGO!

    I don’t care who she is, why she is pregnant, why she wants an abortion and I think it’s good that she doesn’t hide

    Also: Haven’t we been informed that in the UK c*nt isn’t a misogynistic slur hurled at uppity women? Didn’t those people get the memo?

  31. nrdo says

    @ Gerry Delonzo
    You can’t post one unusual situation, in which criminal charges were involved, and assert that something is a common occurrence based on that alone.

  32. gc12847 says

    @30 Yes I think that’s it. I don’t think the outrage really has that much to do with the abortion, but to do with her as person (although it doesn’t justify it at all).
    And yes, you are right, her right to abortion is sacrosanct. And she has a right to say it on tv.

    However, I’m less inclined to agree with the publicly funded breast enlargements. Did she have a medical reason for it? I really think that NHS shouldn’t fund purely cosmetic surgery really, and that is definitely something that has led to the angry reaction, I’d imagine.

  33. burgundy says

    @ Gerry Delonzo – Oh wow, no one at Pharyngula has ever heard of that before… oh wait. Were you actually interested in a good-faith dialogue? If so, you might want to do even the barest bit of research before saying something like this, don’t you think? Sorry to burst your bubble so publicly, but you deserved it.

  34. Marc Abian says

    Don’t care about abortions (in fact, I think the more the better), but I’ll vilify anyone who makes a choice which makes them a villain, even if they have the legal right, like Kehoe fighting Clair Patterson over lead.

    You can also have bad reasons for wanting to have a baby, but we shouldn’t also vilify women for making that choice

    Don’t necessarily agree. If someone wanted to have a baby, just so they could torture it, that’s villainous.

  35. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Oh wow, no one at Pharyngula has ever heard of that before… oh wait. Were you actually interested in a good-faith dialogue?”

    Derp, that’s my point. The fact that it was even covered here makes it all the more strange that Azykroth asked if this has ever happened, “even once.” Strange, isn’t it?

  36. opposablethumbs says

    an abortion in, say, the 38th week of pregnancy.

    It happens quite frequently beyond the 24-week

    And whoosh! Those goalposts sure move fast, don’t they? From 38 weeks to 24 weeks in the blink of an eye!

    Gerry Delonzo, you are not a very clever liar. Try harder.

    Oh, and Gosnel? That kind of malpractice is the result of preventing access - which ought to be easy, straightforward and affordable – to early abortions. You duplicitous douchenozzle.

  37. Marc Abian says

    Also: Haven’t we been informed that in the UK c*nt isn’t a misogynistic slur hurled at uppity women? Didn’t those people get the memo?

    Nothing about its usage in this context means it’s not essentially interchangeable with asshole, which is what I suspect most people have said to you. It’s more commonly said about men than women, and as a slur in those cases it is not interchangeable with other slurs such as pussy or vagina (which imply cowardice and whinyness, respectively).

  38. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Gerry Delonzo, so 21 times–all performed by the same unscrupulous physician–now constitutes “quite frequently”. So, Gerry, give me a $50 dollar bill and I’ll give you a dollar “quite frequently”.

  39. Gerry Delonzo says

    “You can’t post one unusual situation, in which criminal charges were involved, and assert that something is a common occurrence based on that alone.:”

    I didn’t say it was “common.” I said it happens “quite frequently.” In the Northeast United States (which is where Gosnell “practiced,” there is no shortage of competent medical institutions at which an individual can get an abortion prior to the 24-week mark. The point of my original post is to glean whether PZ supports the “choice” to abort beyond the current viability period and, if so, whether it matters to him that the fetus is 25 weeks or 38 weeks, since both fetuses are viable. Since PZ’s post speaks in absolutes, I wanted to see how far those absolutes actually extend.

  40. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Oh, and Gosnel? That kind of malpractice is the result of preventing access – which ought to be easy, straightforward and affordable – to early abortions. You duplicitous douchenozzle.”

    You’re displaying your ignorance here. Access to abortion is not an issue in Philadelphia or the surrounding areas. At all.

  41. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Those goalposts sure move fast, don’t they? From 38 weeks to 24 weeks in the blink of an eye!”

    From a physician’s perspective, both a 24-week and a 38-week fetus are viable, so I’m not sure the goalposts have really been moved at all. If you would like to draw a medical distinction, then please enlighten us.

  42. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It happens quite frequently beyond the 24-week viability period

    Which is irrelevant as at no point until birth is the fetus even equal to the women its inside of. Besides, once viability is reached, medical reasons, not choice, is why pregnancy is terminated. Which may involve early birth.

    Now, show me solid evidence where your involvement should come between a woman and her medical team.

  43. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    If you would like to draw a medical distinction, then please enlighten us.

    Try shutting the fuck up and listening, not preaching.

  44. burgundy says

    Well Gerry, I can’t speak for PZ, but for myself, yes, I am an absolutist. At whatever point a woman decides she no longer wishes to be pregnant, she should be able to stop being pregnant. It may be that the best way for her to become not-pregnant is to induce labor or perform a c-section. The key point is the termination of the pregnancy. The details should be worked out between her and the relevant medical staff (and she should be able to access properly-trained, above-board medical staff, and not be forced to seek out people like Kermit Gosnell.)

    I’d ask you to do some research into the reasons why women have late-term abortions and to reflect on what these imaginary 38-week abortion scenarios say about your opinion of women, but since you don’t seem to be able to tell the difference between 38 and 24, I think that would be a waste of time.

  45. Gen, Uppity Ingrate and Ilk says

    From a physician’s perspective, both a 24-week and a 38-week fetus are viable, so I’m not sure the goalposts have really been moved at all. If you would like to draw a medical distinction, then please enlighten us.

    Hey asshat, what about the distinction between Ending a pregnancy and killing the fetus? Because these are not the same things, you see, and Gosnell was a criminal who killed babies after they were born and was convicted properly, so I don’t see why you brought him up.

  46. spamamander, internet amphibian says

    The reason those women went to a butcher like Gosnell IS because they didn’t have access. Many were immigrant women who may not have known where to go to have a safe procedure, and he was in their neighborhood, and cheap. Others didn’t have transportation or access to care before they scraped up enough money to even afford his hellhole of a ‘clinic’. Do you honestly think women went there, instead of a safe, clean legitimate clinic, because they felt like they had options?

    And do you honestly think there’s women out there who decide out of the blue at 38 weeks, “you know what? I don’t want this, think I’ll abort?” Especially since abortion at that stage would be inducing labor or a c-section? (Abortion is the ending of a pregnancy- that is what would be done to end a pregnancy at that stage)

    You’re completely not arguing in good faith if you can’t see the difference between a 24 week fetus that has a chance of possibly surviving with intensive medical care, and a 38 week full-term fetus. And if you have such a low opinion of women that you honestly think late term procedures are conducted for convenience.

  47. says

    I’ve gotten to a point where I’d like to slap every idiot who comes along with “38th week, gotcha!

    And Delonzo, take a moment out from being an idiot and learn to quote properly – use <blockquote>place text here</blockquote>

  48. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Which is irrelevant as at no point until birth is the fetus even equal to the women its inside of.”

    You might think so. Many disagree, especially since except for the location of the baby, there is no medical difference between the fetus inside the mother at 32 weeks and the baby outside the mother at 40 weeks or thereafter. It’s a completely arbitrary distinction, which is why most laws focus on the concept of viability, which due to advances in medical technology is being pushed back in time further and further.

  49. Gerry Delonzo says

    “The reason those women went to a butcher like Gosnell IS because they didn’t have access”

    Yes, they did. Philadelphia is replete with options for women to obtain safe abortions before 24 weeks. You seem to know absolutely nothing about the area in which Gosnell was located. I happen to love there, ace.

  50. Gen, Uppity Ingrate and Ilk says

    Many disagree, especially since except for the location of the baby, there is no medical difference between the fetus inside the mother at 32 weeks and the baby outside the mother at 40 weeks or thereafter.

    Hey, you nailed it! The answer is BECAUSE OF ITS LOCATION! No one has the right to use someone else’s body without continuing consent, regardless of how old they are.

    Also, an “abortion” at 38 weeks would result in a live baby unless theere was something horribly, tragically wrong with the pregnancy.

  51. Gen, Uppity Ingrate and Ilk says

    Yes, they did. Philadelphia is replete with options for women to obtain safe abortions before 24 weeks. You seem to know absolutely nothing about the area in which Gosnell was located. I happen to love there, ace.

    Hey ace, did you miss the ongoing war to make abortion access harder and harder with more and more hoops to jump through?

  52. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Gerry Delonzo: “Many disagree, especially since except for the location of the baby, there is no medical difference between the fetus inside the mother at 32 weeks and the baby outside the mother at 40 weeks or thereafter.”

    Oh for fuck sake. Dude, there is a huge difference. The fetus still inside the mother must still survive birth, and that cannot be taken for granted. A whole helluvalot can still go wrong even at 32 weeks, even at 38 weeks, even at 40 weeks. Whatever happened to “your rights end at your nose?” And why the hell do are you so interested in poking your nose up the birth canal?

  53. Ariaflame, BSc, BF, PhD says

    So how many abortions have you managed to easily obtain in Philadelphia Gerry?

  54. chrisdevries says

    I think the way she did this, publicly, is actually very courageous and even righteous (in the non-80s surfer-dude language sense). She went out on a limb and in doing so showed society that many people in the UK still have an issue with a woman’s right to choose not to continue a pregnancy (regardless of her reasons for doing so). She also, by being a public figure, is helping to both normalise abortion and make other women realise that they CAN choose to put themselves and their own aspirations first without feeling guilty or selfish. This is feminist activism at its best; if only there wasn’t the very real risk to her own career path, that she might be stigmatised in an industry where public perception is everything.

  55. The Mellow Monkey: Non-Hypothetical says

    Gerry Delonzo @ 51

    Many disagree, especially since except for the location of the baby, there is no medical difference between the fetus inside the mother at 32 weeks and the baby outside the mother at 40 weeks or thereafter. It’s a completely arbitrary distinction

    The difference between a 32 week fetus and a full term newborn is arbitrary? So doctors are just doing it for shits and giggles when they put people on bed rest to try to prevent preterm labor? People are staying pregnant for nearly two months longer than they need to be, just because doctors thought 40 weeks sounded so much nicer than 32? When preterm labor can’t be stopped, those steroid shots to prepare the fetus’s lungs before delivery are to milk a few more dollars out of the delivery?

    The wealth of material on the dangers of preterm deliveries and the fucking thousands of years humans have been paying attention to how long a healthy pregnancy should last is all just arbitrary?

    Just because modern NICU care gives good survival odds to moderately preterm babies doesn’t mean there’s no fucking difference between a 32 week fetus and an independent, air breathing, food ingesting, newborn.

    The most important difference is that the newborn isn’t hooked up to anybody’s body and can be cared for by any capable person willing to do so.

  56. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Many disagree, especially since except for the location of the baby, there is no medical difference between the fetus inside the mother at 32 weeks and the baby outside the mother at 40 weeks or

    Then YOU do some real research, like this: Changes at birth. To say ther is no difference is a deliberate and stupid lie. You and your attitude loses every time. You don’t make any decision for anybody else.

  57. Gen, Uppity Ingrate and Ilk says

    there is no medical difference between the fetus inside the mother at 32 weeks and the baby outside the mother at 40 weeks or thereafter.

    That is an out and out falsehood.

  58. spamamander, internet amphibian says

    Tell you what Gary, when you complete a pregnancy and give birth you can come back and tell me how the location is no big difference. I have had two early abortions and then three pregnancies I carried to term, and I can tell you there is all the difference in the world.

  59. Gerry Delonzo says

    “No one has the right to use someone else’s body without continuing consent, regardless of how old they are.”

    Except for the baby that would be viable, right?

  60. Gen, Uppity Ingrate and Ilk says

    Except for the baby that would be viable, right?

    Nope. Carrying a baby to term means there is ongoing consent.

  61. Holms says

    Oh shit, gang. Gerry Delonzo has found a single case of malpractice, guess we need to pack up the entire practice of providing abortion options.

    Gerry, you may not be able to help being an idiot, but do try to avoid it where possible.

  62. opposablethumbs says

    except for the location of the

    Oddly enough, there’s quite a lot of difference between something being located inside you and something located elsewhere. Try it with a watermelon, I’m sure you’ll notice.

    “Abortion” at 38, 39, 40 weeks is called induction, cesarean etc. and results in a live baby unless there was some medical disaster.

    Nobody has the right to use someone else’s blood and organs against their will; a pregnant person has the right to terminate the pregnancy at any time. In practice, of course, late terminations are always the result either of medical emergency (requiring the termination of a wanted pregnancy) or of lack of access to an early abortion.
    Just look at the stats from civilised countries which don’t make early access so hard to obtain – the percentage of late abortions is tiny, and they are medically indicated terminations of wanted pregnancies.

  63. AsqJames says

    gc12847 (#35),

    However, I’m less inclined to agree with the publicly funded breast enlargements. Did she have a medical reason for it? I really think that NHS shouldn’t fund purely cosmetic surgery really, and that is definitely something that has led to the angry reaction, I’d imagine.

    1. There are valid medical reasons for breast enlargement surgery.

    2. An individual’s medical records (including the reasons for any particular procedure) are nobody else’s business. Decisions about, and the reasons for, any treatment are between the patient (or their representative) and his/her doctor(s).

    3. Sharing any amount of information about yourself does not entitle anybody else to other information you have chosen to keep private.

    If you disagree with any of those statements, please indicate which one(s) and why. If you don’t disagree, can you understand why you do not have the right to dispute her access to health care?

    The right wing and their rabid press, who are desperate for the destruction and dismantlement of the NHS, are positively giddy about the existence of this woman. She could only be a more perfect hate figure for them if she were an immigrant lesbian with dark skin. I give it a few months at most before some politician is citing this story as a reason for tighter restrictions on treatments, and who is entitled to them, through the NHS.

  64. says

    there is no medical difference between the fetus inside the mother at 32 weeks

    A pregnant woman is not a mother (unless, of course, she’s mothering children). She is a pregnant woman.

  65. Gerry Delonzo says

    “The most important difference is that the newborn isn’t hooked up to anybody’s body and can be cared for by any capable person willing to do so.”

    In most circumstances, so can the 28 or 32 week fetus There are risk factors with pre-term delivery, absolutely, and no one is suggesting otherwise (certainly not me). But the 28 week fetus the 40 week fetus share the most important common trait – they could both survive outside of the womb with the proper care. If you’re arguing that the extent of the care that the baby received outside of the womb should make a difference when it comes to the legal dividing line for abortions, then I would say your argument is incredibly weak and laughable. Again, this is why most physicians and medical professionals agree with the concept of working the concept of viability into the law, a concept which seems to escape you, for some reason (although based on your response, I think the appeal to emotion fallacy is in full effect here).

  66. opposablethumbs says

    there is no medical difference between the fetus inside the mother at 32 weeks and the baby outside the mother at 40 weeks or thereafter.

    Now, now, Gerry, hasn’t anybody told you you shouldn’t tell lies? Because that’s an outright lie (or, charitably, it’s monumentally stupid. If you’re that ill-informed, you shouldn’t say another word until you’ve taken steps to obtain medically accurate information). The Mellow Monkey @#58 pretty much said it all; and really – nobody is that ignorant, so you’re just lying for effect. Well done, you achieved the effect – of demonstrating that you couldn’t care less about the truth.

  67. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Nope. Carrying a baby to term means there is ongoing consent.”

    I was talking about the right to “use” the body of the baby by destroying its body via an abortion past the viability period. I guess you’re ok with having an internally inconsistent ideology when it comes to individual rights. I’m not.

  68. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Nobody has the right to use someone else’s blood and organs against their will; a pregnant person has the right to terminate the pregnancy at any time.”

    Except, apparently, when the body of the otherwise viable fetus is destroyed. That seems to me to be a very extreme “use of someone else’s blood and organs against their will.” The inconsistency in your viewpoint is astounding.

  69. opposablethumbs says

    Viability and advances in medical technology have no bearing on the fact that there is no such thing as a right to use someone’s blood and organs against their will.

  70. The Mellow Monkey: Non-Hypothetical says

    I want to point out a medical difference between a fetus and a newborn, aside from the most important difference, which is a newborn isn’t physically attached to a gestating person. This medical difference is one that’s causing a lot of heartache in my family on this very day.

    See, my niece is having a 20 week diagnostic ultrasound today, to try to determine if the fetus she’s carrying has a potentially fatal heart condition or not. Her last pregnancy ended in a stillbirth because of this condition. However, because the heart functions differently after birth, this ultrasound can’t entirely rule out the condition.

    She will have to wait until she gives birth to find out for certain if the condition is present or not. This is a huge, life or death difference between a functioning fetus and a dying newborn. Heart surgery could be necessary and it can’t be ruled out until after birth.

    Because there is a difference between a fetus and a newborn, Gerry. My entire family is on pins and needles and no one will be able to entirely relax until after the birth because we know that difference. Don’t you dare lie about this.

  71. gc12847 says

    AsqJames #35
    Sorry, I should have made it clearer. What I meant is if there is a medical reason then of course you should have completely free access to it. I completely support the NHS and the principles of universally free medical care, payed via taxation (I am a socialist).
    However, if it is for completely cosmetic reasons (no health reasons or if it isn’t reconstructive surgery), I don’t think it is right to waste resources on it when those resources/finances could go somewhere else.

    If there was a medical reason behind it (which I’m not saying there wasn’t, I don’t know, and I haven’t actually condemned her for it, I was just commenting on what other people think on it) then that’s fine.

    If it is literally because she just wants larger breast then it shouldn’t be free on the NHS. There is only so much money/resources to go around.

  72. Gerry Delonzo says

    “that there is no such thing as a right to use someone’s blood and organs against their will.”

    Oh, but there is, and you support it! It’s a right in any jurisdiction where it is legal to abort an otherwise viable fetus. Because then you manifestly are using the blood and organs of the fetus by destroying them.

  73. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    <blockquote.Except for the baby that would be viable, right?There is no such thing. A baby is born. A fetus is inside of the mother. If you lie about that, what else will you lie about? And why should we take your word for anything on this subject?

  74. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Gerry,
    The vast majority of abortions that take place past viability occur because something goes terribly wrong with the pregnancy. Do you really think women decide on a whim to have a late-term abortion, you ignorant foodtube?

    This hits close to home for me, because some friends of my wife recently went through this. Over 30 weeks into the pregnancy, they discovered the blood was circulating in the wrong direction and the fetus was badly deformed and probably not viable. They could: a)carry the fetus to term and have it die, also risking the life of the mother, b)carry out a late-term abortion. Now for option b) they had to go across state lines to a really dismal clinic and wait for the procedure. So, in addition to their grief about losing the fetus, they also had to contend with a long trip, harassment from clueless protesters, surgery and recovery in dismal surroundings and the trip back. All because douche canoes like you want to solve a problem that for all practical purposes doesn’t exist. So, go fuck yourself, Gerry.

  75. Gerry Delonzo says

    “I want to point out a medical difference between a fetus and a newborn, aside from the most important difference, which is a newborn isn’t physically attached to a gestating person. This medical difference is one that’s causing a lot of heartache in my family on this very day.”

    I guess context is unimportant to you, since I have repeatedly made it clear that I am saying there is no medical different for purposes of determining the legal dividing line for abortion. But I guess that’s unimportant when someone simply wants to engage in ad hominem attacks. Carry on.

  76. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Gerry,
    The vast majority of abortions that take place past viability occur because something goes terribly wrong with the pregnancy”

    Citation, please.

  77. Gerry Delonzo says

    “There is no such thing. A baby is born. A fetus is inside of the mother.”

    Stating that “a baby is born” is not an argument. Do you have substance to your argument for why abortions, outside of circumstances where it is medically necessary for the health of the mother, should be legal if the fetus is otherwise viable?

  78. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Gerry, do you really think someone is going to wait until viability and then suddenly decide on a whim to abort? Are you really that clueless? Tell me, because so far, you aren’t passing a Turing test.

  79. Gerry Delonzo says

    “All because douche canoes like you want to solve a problem that for all practical purposes doesn’t exist.”

    This is almost funny. Why do you think the problem doesn’t exist? It’s because in almost all jurisdictions there is a dividing line, based upon the medical concept of viability, past which an abortion is illegal. The truly scary thing, from a human rights perspective, is that you and several other individuals on this forum think the dividing line shouldn’t exist.

  80. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Do you have substance to your argument for why abortions, outside of circumstances where it is medically necessary for the health of the mother, should be legal if the fetus is otherwise viable?

    Do you have any evidence you and your anti-choice opinion has any need to be in a a room where a woman and here doctor are discussing her medical conditions? Either put up or shut the fuck up. And there is a difference between a baby and a fetus. One is born, the other isn’t. Basic biology. Are you really so stupid as to not see the difference?

  81. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    , based upon the medical concept of viability, past which an abortion is illegal.

    Gee, here in the US there is something called medical indications, and abortions are done to save the life of the mother, or in cases where the viability of the fetus or baby is in question. You are one stupid fuckwit.

  82. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Gerry, do you have a problem with late-term abortion (past normal term of viability) when the life or health of the mother is at risk?

    Do you have a problem with late-term abortion when the fetus would likely not survive, would have a genetic disease that would result in its early death or would be severely deformed, etc.?

  83. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Gerry, do you really think someone is going to wait until viability and then suddenly decide on a whim to abort?”

    It doesn’t have to be “on a whim,” but there are certainly people who would do so on a whim if it were legal. Circumstances could change and someone who initially wanted to carry the baby to term decides that they no longer want to due to inconvenience. Based upon the fundamental selfishness of most people, I wouldn’t be surprises in the least of someone decided to abort past viability for any number of reasons related to their own convenience.

  84. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Gerry, do you have a problem with late-term abortion (past normal term of viability) when the life or health of the mother is at risk?

    Do you have a problem with late-term abortion when the fetus would likely not survive, would have a genetic disease that would result in its early death or would be severely deformed, etc.?”

    No and no.

  85. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Gerry: “Circumstances could change and someone who initially wanted to carry the baby to term decides that they no longer want to due to inconvenience.”

    First, citation fucking needed.

    Second, Dude, do you want people who would opt for a late-term abortion on a whim to be raising children?

    Third, do you think late-term abortions are fun?

  86. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Do you have any evidence you and your anti-choice opinion has any need to be in a a room where a woman and here doctor are discussing her medical conditions?”

    It’s called believing in a philosophy of basic human rights, which, in my view, should encompass the rights of a fetus that would otherwise be viable outside of the womb.

  87. Gerry Delonzo says

    “First, citation fucking needed.”

    Citation to what? That someone could change their mind? What are you talking about?

    “Second, Dude, do you want people who would opt for a late-term abortion on a whim to be raising children?”

    They don’t have to raise the children.

    “Third, do you think late-term abortions are fun?”

    I don’t think that any abortions are “fun.” Do you?

  88. The Mellow Monkey: Non-Hypothetical says

    Gerry @ 81

    I guess context is unimportant to you, since I have repeatedly made it clear that I am saying there is no medical different for purposes of determining the legal dividing line for abortion. But I guess that’s unimportant when someone simply wants to engage in ad hominem attacks. Carry on.

    The medical and ethical differences are being explained to you again and again, but you continue to handwave them away. You pretend as though terminations of viable pregnancies aren’t called births. As though late-term terminations aren’t a private medical decision that you should trust the patient and medical team to handle without your fucking input. I sincerely hope that somewhere deep down inside your smug mind is just a flicker of empathy. And later when you leave this thread, you feel shame and try not to hurt people like this in the future.

    Sorry, Horde. I thought I was up for this today, but I’m not. I’m going to go cry.

  89. kevinkirkpatrick says

    “Except, apparently, when the body of the otherwise viable fetus is destroyed. That seems to me to be a very extreme “use of someone else’s blood and organs against their will.” The inconsistency in your viewpoint is astounding.”

    If any person in the world should become attached to my body (regardless of how they became so), I have every right to have that person detached; even if doing so results in that person’s death. Furthermore, I have every right to do so with the method that poses the least risk to my body.

    If I were attached to your body, Gerry, and the only safe means to detach me would result in my death, you absolutely have the right to do so. If I had kidnapped you and surgically hijacked your organs by plugging tubes from my body into your liver, it would absolutely be your choice as to whether or not you’d allow me to remain attached. Irrespective of my “viability”. Irrespective of my “personhood”. Irrespective of our relationship (you’d have the same choice, legally, if your own child were attached).

    It is your body, and I simply have no right to use it without your ongoing consent.

    Do you dispute this?

  90. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    OK, Jerry, if a woman were that doubtful about the pregnancy that she would go back and forth on whether to terminate, do you really think she’d wait 8 months? Do you actually know any women?

  91. opposablethumbs says

    A foetus is not a person. And even if it were, it would not have the right to use another person’s body. Nobody can force you to donate blood or a kidney even if it means the would-be recipient will die without them.

    Or of course, Gerry, if you really mean to be consistent, and what matters is the life of another, you would be in favour of legally obligatory blood/marrow/organ donations across the board? Why shouldn’t you and indeed every man be legally obliged to donate bone marrow or a fraction of your liver? Even at risk to your own health and in some cases to your life?

  92. says

    You see, women don’t really have autonomy. A pregnant woman is the “mother” of a “baby” she now owes. If she exercises her bodily autonomy and aborts the pregnancy, she’s selfishly using the fetus. It makes perfect sense, in Misogyny Land.

    The truly scary thing, from a human rights perspective, is that you and several other individuals on this forum think the dividing line shouldn’t exist.

    We could even go down the road of Canada, that terrifying cesspool where human rights aren’t respected.

    From a human rights perspective, abortion restrictions do nothing but violate women’s human rights and harm and kill women. Women have human rights, and one of the most fundamental is the right to make decisions about our own bodies and reproduction.

    (I’m almost amused that the indulgence of Delonzo’s trolling of me on the other thread has contributed to this…)

  93. Gerry Delonzo says

    “You pretend as though terminations of viable pregnancies aren’t called births.”

    I’m not pretending anything, you’re completely misrepresenting my argument because you’re too emotionally weak to be rational or discuss the issue logically. That’s a pretty significant personal failing on your part. There are several people on this thread that are absolutists and would like people to have the right, at ANY time prior to birth, to abort/terminate a pregnancy. That’s fucking stupid. And if you agree with them, you’re fucking stupid, too. So please, go cry if you have nothing of import to add.

    “As though late-term terminations aren’t a private medical decision that you should trust the patient and medical team to handle without your fucking input.”

    Grow up. Society absolutely should have input if there is no medically necessary reason to terminate the pregnancy past the viability period. You obviously just don’t give a shit about whether a post-viability fetus is allowed to survive or not. That’s fine, but don’t pretend you’re on some kind of high horse.

  94. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    73
    Gerry Delonzo

    “Nobody has the right to use someone else’s blood and organs against their will; a pregnant person has the right to terminate the pregnancy at any time.”

    Except, apparently, when the body of the otherwise viable fetus is destroyed. That seems to me to be a very extreme “use of someone else’s blood and organs against their will.” The inconsistency in your viewpoint is astounding.

    Dumbfuck, no one is using the fetus. It’s being removed from violating someone’s body and the fetus dying is merely a side effect.

    89 Gerry Delonzo

    It doesn’t have to be “on a whim,” but there are certainly people who would do so on a whim if it were legal. Circumstances could change and someone who initially wanted to carry the baby to term decides that they no longer want to due to inconvenience. Based upon the fundamental selfishness of most people, I wouldn’t be surprises in the least of someone decided to abort past viability for any number of reasons related to their own convenience.

    So fucking what? Do you think forcing a woman to stay pregnant is going to fix anything? One more unwanted child and a woman violated, knowing her body isn’t her own.

    What a fucked up world you advocate for.

    Did you look at the low rates of late term abortions in places like Canada where there is no restrictions on abortion? Your “problem” isn’t an actual cause for concern.

    And I really hate this “viability” shit. It’s so vague. It keeps creeping closer. No wonder forced birthers love the term so much. You know what isn’t vague? BIRTH.

  95. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Women have human rights, and one of the most fundamental is the right to make decisions about our own bodies and reproduction.”

    And the post-viable female fetuses should have rights, too. Oh, that’s right! You don’t care about them! I forgot that you only care about women’s rights when it can somehow benefit you. My mistake.

  96. zenlike says

    Gosnell?
    Birth is somehow ‘arbitrary’?
    Fetus has as much human rights as an adult human being?

    I think my bingo card is filling up quite fast.

    Garry, for someone who tries to give of the veneer of not being against all abortions, you truly sound like your average pro-life idiot.

  97. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Did you look at the low rates of late term abortions in places like Canada where there is no restrictions on abortion? Your “problem” isn’t an actual cause for concern.”

    Citation, please.

    “One more unwanted child and a woman violated, knowing her body isn’t her own.”

    Citation, please.

  98. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Garry, for someone who tries to give of the veneer of not being against all abortions, you truly sound like your average pro-life idiot.”

    I realize that having a nuanced position on a matter is difficult for some of the posters here to understand. Sadly, you seem to be a part of that group.

  99. kevinkirkpatrick says

    Hi Gerry – I don’t want to impute motives, so I’ll just ask: any particular reason you chose not to respond to my question in #95? Do you dispute anything I said about the legal rights you’d have in the hypothetical I described?

  100. David Marjanović says

    “The reason those women went to a butcher like Gosnell IS because they didn’t have access”

    Yes, they did. Philadelphia is replete with options for women to obtain safe abortions before 24 weeks. You seem to know absolutely nothing about the area in which Gosnell was located. I happen to love there, ace.

    So you didn’t click on the link? You definitely didn’t read the comments there. Have a look:

    “Another Gosnell patient [...] noted in an Associated Press article that she intended to go to Planned Parenthood for an abortion procedure, but was scared away by anti-abortion protesters picketing outside the clinic. An acquaintance suggested she go to Gosnell, where protesters (ironically) were not an issue.”

  101. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    99

    I’m not pretending anything, you’re completely misrepresenting my argument because you’re too emotionally weak to be rational or discuss the issue logically. That’s a pretty significant personal failing on your part. There are several people on this thread that are absolutists and would like people to have the right, at ANY time prior to birth, to abort/terminate a pregnancy. That’s fucking stupid. And if you agree with them, you’re fucking stupid, too. So please, go cry if you have nothing of import to add.

    Grow up. Society absolutely should have input if there is no medically necessary reason to terminate the pregnancy past the viability period. You obviously just don’t give a shit about whether a post-viability fetus is allowed to survive or not. That’s fine, but don’t pretend you’re on some kind of high horse.

    How about you fuck off? Mellow Monkey and every woman I know including myself and thought a fuck lot more about this than you. We live this shit.

    Why should society have an input? Because we’re at a risk of dying out as a species? *snort*
    And no, I don’t give a shit if a “post-viability” (What time frame? 24 weeks? 22 weeks like some states? Or the heartbeat states?) fetus dies or not. Why should I? It’s a clump of cells and unless their host wants to continuing hosting them, that’s all they ever will be.

    Do you cry for tumors? Tapeworms?

  102. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I guess context is unimportant to you, since I have repeatedly made it clear that I am saying there is no medical different for purposes of determining the legal dividing line for abortion.

    When a evidenceless fool keeps making the same well refuted claims over and over, their word isn’t taken for anything other than bullshit. Or, is that your problem? Your inane and stupid word isn’t being taken as seriously as you think it should, by some of us who have been arguing abortion since before Roe v. Wade, since you won’t back your claims?

  103. says

    @opposablethumbs #67:

    Oddly enough, there’s quite a lot of difference between something being located inside you and something located elsewhere.

    I guess Gerry has never been constipated.

  104. David Marjanović says

    They understand choice in general. In general means applied to men.

    Very well said.

  105. opposablethumbs says

    you manifestly are using the blood and organs of the fetus by destroying them

    What a silly thing to say. If you detach another organism from your body (as in kevinkirkpatrick’s example at #95), you may be unable in practice to do so without damaging it but you most certainly would not be making use of it; you are ceasing to allow it to make use of you.
    Do you “use” the mosquito you brush off your arm?

  106. zenlike says

    ‘You are too emotional / you are not using Total Vulcan Cold Logic’

    Bingo, I guess.

  107. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    There is nothing nuanced here, Gerry. Either a woman has bodily autonomy or she does not. Now, personally, as a man, I don’t feel like I should be telling a woman what to do with HER body. And you have yet to cite even a scintilla of evidence that late-term abortion is performed with any sort of frequency when the health of the woman is not endangered or the fetus is not compromised.

    Gerry, it is you that is insisting that women must give up bodily autonomy. If you were doing so for any reason other than to oppress women, I would hope you would have the decency to provide evidence that your justification for doing so were actually real.

  108. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Hi Gerry – I don’t want to impute motives, so I’ll just ask: any particular reason you chose not to respond to my question in #95? Do you dispute anything I said about the legal rights you’d have in the hypothetical I described?”

    Your argument completely falls apart if the individual consented to the attachment in the first place. Changing your mind is not sufficient cause to allow for separation that results in other person’s death. Your line of thinking is absurd, because you’re violating the reasonable expectations of the person who is attached to you. You’re stuck with that person. I won’t even get into how your hypothetical would spell doom for many conjoined twins, since it’s self-evident. Think of better ridiculous hypotheticals, please.

  109. Gerry Delonzo says

    “If you were doing so for any reason other than to oppress women,”

    Supporting the post-viability termination of female fetuses is oppressing women. It’s the most oppressive action that you could possibly take. It’s just sad that you don’t realize this.

  110. AsqJames says

    gc12847 (#76),

    If it is literally because she just wants larger breast then it shouldn’t be free on the NHS. There is only so much money/resources to go around.

    I absolutely agree. In fact that’s a point the NHS itself makes:

    Cosmetic surgery is rarely available through the NHS. There must be overriding physical or psychological reasons for considering it as a treatment option.

    As long as the guidelines were followed and the clinicians involved made the determination about “overriding physical or psychological” reasons in good faith with strong evidence, I’m fine with it. I’d be angry too if she received the surgery for spurious reasons.

    I’d be angry with those who made the decision to fund it, not with her for asking for it.

    Treatment is rationed on the NHS. This is an undeniable fact. At best it is rationed in a transparent and rational way based on clinical need and with public input on priorities. Which I’m sure you’ll agree is better than basing it ability to pay or how cleverly an insurance company lawyer can word their policy documents.

    The best way to ensure NHS rationing is transparent and fair is to have clinically trained people audit hospitals & funding groups (CCGs) to ensure their decisions are made on the best evidence and clinical need, and to make those audits public. That could have been a major positive from the Care.Data programme if they’d got the anonymity side right and not been so obviously looking to make money from the sale of (aggregated) health records.

    Maybe the worst of all possible ways is for untrained and ill-informed journalists and members of the public to harangue individual patients based on their lifestyle, career choices and looks.

  111. says

    I can’t add anything to the valiant work going on here, except to thank you Horde members for fighting the good fight. I would’ve lost my temper and started screaming incoherently long since.

  112. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Think of better ridiculous hypotheticals, please.

    Your stupid and inane hypothetical of calling a fetus a bay is ridiculous. You must upgrade your fuckwitted and outdated arguments to reality. Which is oh so sorely lacking. Your anger at being challenged with reality shines through.

  113. Gerry Delonzo says

    “How about you fuck off? Mellow Monkey and every woman I know including myself and thought a fuck lot more about this than you. We live this shit.”

    This made me chuckle. And it doesn’t matter how MUCH you’ve thought about the subject if the quality of your thinking is shit (*laughs*).

  114. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Supporting the post-viability termination of female fetuses is oppressing women. It’s the most oppressive action that you could possibly take. It’s just sad that you don’t realize this.

    This from some fuckwit who can’t and won’t prove that the have any business coming into a decision between a woman and her medical team. Typical of those without cogent arguments.

  115. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Gerry, you have yet to show that women choose late-term abortions for frivolous reasons. Until you provide some scintilla of evidence for that contention, the only possible motivation you have is oppression of women by denying them bodily autonomy.

  116. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Your anger at being challenged with reality shines through.”

    See, I’m not in the least angry, I’m thoroughly amused!

  117. azhael says

    Gerry, which part of “when the fetus is viable the termination of a pregnancy, i.e.an abortion does not imply killing the fetus” is too hard for you to understand?

    You have presented ONE case of a murdering criminal killing viable fetuses post-partum. That has fuck all to do with the reality of legalizing abortion. If a woman was to end her pregnancy past the point of viability, the fetus would not die….

  118. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    And it doesn’t matter how MUCH you’ve thought about the subject if the quality of your thinking is shit (*laughs*).

    Laughs at the pot calling the kettle black. Your arguments were refuted forty years ago. What an ego if you think by force of your anger they are any less refuted.

  119. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Gerry@119, Well, now we see what you truly think of women. The woman-hating beast unsheathes its talons.

  120. opposablethumbs says

    So, Gerry, do you think that if someone agrees to donate a kidney to someone else and later changes their mind (for any reason, anything from getting cold feet up to and including discovering that the risk to their own health is greater than previously anticipated) they should nevertheless be legally obliged to donate that kidney and dragged off to theatre by force if they won’t go voluntarily?

    Do you think fathers should be legally obliged to donate organs to their children if they need them? Siblings to siblings? Children to parents? Anyone to anyone? Just trying to get an idea of what importance you place on lives, here.

  121. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    See, I’m not in the least angry, I’m thoroughly amused [stupid]!

    Fixed that for you. You are angry. Otherwise, you would shut the fuck up, unless you are deliberately trolling. Then you should be banhammered for terminal stupidity.

  122. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Gerry, you have yet to show that women choose late-term abortions for frivolous reasons.”

    You don’t get it – I don’t care if the reason is frivolous or not. It is a gross violation of human rights to terminate a post-viable fetus except in the limited circumstances that were previously noted. I don’t care if someone wants to terminate a post-viable fetus on a whim, or if they really, really, really, really, honest-to-goodness want to terminate the pregnancy. I don’t care, and neither should you if you want to have an internally consistent view of human rights.

  123. Gerry Delonzo says

    “So, Gerry, do you think that if someone agrees to donate a kidney to someone else and later changes their mind (for any reason, anything from getting cold feet up to and including discovering that the risk to their own health is greater than previously anticipated) they should nevertheless be legally obliged to donate that kidney and dragged off to theatre by force if they won’t go voluntarily?”

    No, because the person who need the kidney may have several other means for survival. The post-viable fetus, if terminated, does not.

  124. AsqJames says

    gc12847 (#76),

    Sorry, I just typed a response, but I think WordPress ate it. I think we basically agree, and the NHS agrees with us too:

    Cosmetic surgery is rarely available through the NHS. There must be overriding physical or psychological reasons for considering it as a treatment option.

    I said more in the lost comment, but the thread’s rapidly filling up with Gerry’s nonsense and lots of people countering him. Another reason this story is ideal for the right wing anti-NHS agenda – abortion and breast enlargement both generate more heat than light.

    Just to add, if the enlargement surgery was not based on clinical need as laid down in NHS guidelines, it would be the doctors/managers who made the decision to allow it that we should be angry with, not the woman who asked for it.

  125. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    114
    Gerry Delonzo

    Your argument completely falls apart if the individual consented to the attachment in the first place. Changing your mind is not sufficient cause to allow for separation that results in other person’s death. Your line of thinking is absurd, because you’re violating the reasonable expectations of the person who is attached to you. You’re stuck with that person. I won’t even get into how your hypothetical would spell doom for many conjoined twins, since it’s self-evident. Think of better ridiculous hypotheticals, please.

    1.) Consent is ongoing. It can be withdrawn at any time. For instance, if you agree to donate to save someone’s life you can withdraw consent the second before you go under anesthesia for the operation. My body isn’t a reasonable expectation. With your logic it’s not rape if a woman agreed but then wants to stop having sex.

    2.) Being pregnant isn’t automatically consent. There’s a reason there’s so many birth control options and none of them are guaranteed. Of course, this shows you’re true colors of “Those dirty sluts are killing babeeeeees”.
    Even if it takes a while for the woman to arrange to have the abortion, it doesn’t mean that she consented to the pregnancy, ever. With the cost, time, travel, recovery and wait times it can take months before she could get an abortion even if she wanted an abortion the moment she found out she was pregnant. That pregnancy was never consented to.

    3.) No matter the reason NO ONE has a “reasonable expectation” to use someone’s body, even if it results in their death. If that were true, we’d be a society for harvest organs. But no, it’s just men who have bodily autonomy, hence this stupid forced birth “argument”.

  126. David Marjanović says

    I’ll try again: terminating a pregnancy after the fetus has become viable results in a newborn baby, unless there are medical complications – or unless access to earlier abortion is so restricted that people can only wait and go to Gosnell.

  127. says

    After some of his snipes at SC in the polls thread I was kinda wondering if Gerry was just here to pick a fight and end up banned. I’m much more certain now.

  128. AsqJames says

    gc12847 (#76),

    Third attempt (at least I copied this to the clipboard before submitting). Previous comments may be awaiting moderation as they included link to NHS website. Google block quote below to find the link

    Sorry, I just typed a response, but I think WordPress ate it. I think we basically agree, and the NHS agrees with us too:

    Cosmetic surgery is rarely available through the NHS. There must be overriding physical or psychological reasons for considering it as a treatment option.

    I said more in the lost comment, but the thread’s rapidly filling up with Gerry’s nonsense and lots of people countering him. Another reason this story is ideal for the right wing anti-NHS agenda – abortion and breast enlargement both generate more heat than light.

    Just to add, if the enlargement surgery was not based on clinical need as laid down in NHS guidelines, it would be the doctors/managers who made the decision to allow it that we should be angry with, not the woman who asked for it.

  129. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Being pregnant isn’t automatically consent.”

    Not automatically, of course not. No one is claiming this. But if someone consents to the act that leads to the pregnancy, that’s consenting to the pregnancy. If the person wants to terminate prior to viability, I don’t have a problem with that.

  130. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    130
    Gerry Delonzo

    No, because the person who need the kidney may have several other means for survival. The post-viable fetus, if terminated, does not.

    If the fetus is viable, they can be cared for by someone else after the abortion. If they can’t be, they aren’t fucking viable now are they?

  131. Gerry Delonzo says

    “With your logic it’s not rape if a woman agreed but then wants to stop having sex.”

    LOL! Sorry, but that doesn’t “logically” flow from my argument at all. You’re an idiot.

  132. zenlike says

    Gerry,

    I might point out to you that your particular brand of ‘internally consistent human rights’ include violating the bodily autonomy of male toddlers because you are pro-circumcision (see the ‘sand’ thread), but you would probably not get the point I’m trying to make.

    Also, this view is consistent with the average ‘pro-lifer': pro-fetus rights, but as soon as they are born, who gives a fuck about their rights.

  133. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Of course, this shows you’re true colors of “Those dirty sluts are killing babeeeeees”.”

    It’s funny how you really, really want me to be saying this. I think you might have some of your own issues to deal with if you think it’s acceptable to use the phrase “dirty sluts.” Try actually being more respectful of women rather than just pretending to be.

  134. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Gerry, you have already said you have no problem with abortion to save the life/health of the woman or in the case the fetus is severely compromised (malformed, a genetic disease, etc). How often is late-term abortion performed when these conditions do not apply. If you cannot provide evidence that it is frequent, then you haven’t shown that your concerns are grounded in reality.

    And frankly, the disrespect you have shown women on this thread and others suggests that you’ve never had a serious conversation with one. You aren’t providing much of a case, old chum.

  135. zenlike says

    133, D
    After some of his snipes at SC in the polls thread I was kinda wondering if Gerry was just here to pick a fight and end up banned. I’m much more certain now.

    And in the ‘sand’ thread he is advocating for male-circumsision of toddlers. Never heard of him before he appeared these last days in these three threads, so curious indeed. Amateur contrarian? Idiot? Just a shithead? Could be all three of course.

  136. Gerry Delonzo says

    “If the fetus is viable, they can be cared for by someone else after the abortion. If they can’t be, they aren’t fucking viable now are they?”

    Are you serious? Have you not been paying attention at all? Several people on this thread have come out in support of allowing for a fetus to be terminated (as in gone, dead, no longer living or capable of living, whatever phrase doesn’t offend you sensitive soul) PAST the viability dividing line. THAT’s what I am opposing.

  137. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    135
    Gerry Delonzo

    Not automatically, of course not. No one is claiming this. But if someone consents to the act that leads to the pregnancy, that’s consenting to the pregnancy. If the person wants to terminate prior to viability, I don’t have a problem with that.

    Nope. Consenting to sex is not consenting to pregnancy. Consenting to pregnancy requires getting pregnant on purpose or deciding to continue being pregnant if it’s unplanned. Just because a woman couldn’t get an abortion before 24 weeks (you have yet to actually declare your “viability” terms), because of forced birther laws, doesn’t mean the fetus owns or is owed the use of her body until birth. That’s a short time frame to get anything done, even with great access, because most women don’t find out they are pregnant until 3 months along.

    That’s playing right into the forced birth camp. They create laws to make it impossible for women to get an abortion early, making them give birth or getting one late, which turns the wish-washy “viability moderates” against women. Because women don’t automatically get to control their body. Instead it’s left up to society, since obviously we’re property – walking incubators in waiting.

  138. octopod says

    Dude, Gerry Delonzo, people (e.g. David Marjanović) keep saying this and you keep missing it.

    Termination of a late-term pregnancy is usually done by inducing labor and delivering the baby, unless there are medical complications or a Gosnell-quality medical hack involved.

  139. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Uh, Gerry, if the fetus is viable, do you really think they are going to kill it during the procedure? Do you have any evidence of this occurring in reputable family planning clinics?

  140. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Nope. Consenting to sex is not consenting to pregnancy. ”

    I guess you’re ignorant of the legal theory of proximate causation. Moron.

  141. jefrir says

    I won’t even get into how your hypothetical would spell doom for many conjoined twins, since it’s self-evident. Think of better ridiculous hypotheticals, please.

    You know we do in fact separate conjoined twins, right, even if it means death for one of them?

    No, because the person who need the kidney may have several other means for survival. The post-viable fetus, if terminated, does not.

    Again, this is not necessarily true. People die on the transplant waiting list all the time. If you are so bothered about tiny numbers of fetuses potentially dying, the least you could do is go donate a kidney or some bone marrow to an actual human being who is suffering, and will die without it.
    Also, “viability” is not some magical line where after that point everything will be fine and the fetus is guaranteed to survive. At 24 weeks, only around 50% survive; at 23 weeks, less than 25%. And even babies that survive are unlikely to be healthy. Various complications are routine; for example, intercranial hemorrhage, which can cause permanent brain damage, occurs in 1/3 of babies born at 24-26 weeks. In those circumstances, I can totally see a woman who’s pregnancy is unsustainable and on the borderline of viability deciding that an abortion would be the better option. And I would support her right to make that choice, in consultation with her doctor.

  142. azhael says

    Jesus fuck…it has been pointed out SEVERAL TIMES that terminating a PREGNANCY after viability is not TERMINATING THE FETUS.
    You are extremely dishonest for ignoring the repeated attempts to make this crystal clear and still pretending that anyone has even remotely hinted at deliberately killing fetuses past the viability point.

  143. octopod says

    I think he may have forgotten, as many people seem to, that pregnancy is a process that can be terminated, the process of creating a new human being, rather than some kind of enforced waiting-period between conception and birth.

  144. zenlike says

    Yep, and we’re now discussing the minutiae of legal theory. That’s what we were, discussing right?

  145. says

    “Did you look at the low rates of late term abortions in places like Canada where there is no restrictions on abortion? Your “problem” isn’t an actual cause for concern.”

    Citation, please.

    This is older data and the original report doesn’t seem to be available, but here. (I couldn’t care less if millions of women in any country were having or wanted elective late-term abortions for any reason at all, but this isn’t the case for reasons that should be obvious to anyone. It’s simply not a significant phenomenon. Restrictions on late abortions affect truly few elective decisions, but talking about and instituting them does plenty of harm to real women – it shows contempt for us, provides a demonstration of control over our lives and reproduction, and often puts our health in the hands of people who don’t care about it. It’s a particularly vicious sort of rhetoric. I would compare it to the rhetoric about welfare cheats and voter fraud, but these at least would be actual problems if they were real, unlike women’s exercising their autonomy, which is not a bad thing inherently or on any scale.)

    “One more unwanted child and a woman violated, knowing her body isn’t her own.”

    Citation, please.

    WTF?

    And the post-viable female fetuses should have rights, too.

    No, they’re fetuses. Inside women. There’s no right to be born.

  146. says

    If you eat barbecued meat, sausages, or pickled anything, you are willfully consuming known carcinogens, and are therefore consenting to cancer.

    Because, after all, there’s no possible reason people would put charred food or food with preservatives in their mouths, other than to give themselves cancer.

  147. azhael says

    Actually for the sake of clarity, that should be “deliberately killing fetuses past the viability point, barring extreme medical circumstances”.

  148. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Because women don’t automatically get to control their body. Instead it’s left up to society, since obviously we’re property – walking incubators in waiting.”

    As someone who seems to support eliminating post-viable female fetuses for any reason, I don’t think you’re in a position to lecture about women’s rights. It smacks of hypocrisy.

  149. David Marjanović says

    You know we do in fact separate conjoined twins, right, even if it means death for one of them?

    …If they want to be separated and are aware of the risks, yes…

    I guess you’re ignorant of the legal theory of proximate causation. Moron.

    Then please do share your wisdom. A case could be made that someone who consents to sex without contraception and hasn’t gone to school in the US consents to becoming pregnant at a certain (low) probability; that’s rather different from what you seem to be claiming.

  150. Gerry Delonzo says

    “If you eat barbecued meat, sausages, or pickled anything, you are willfully consuming known carcinogens, and are therefore consenting to cancer.”

    It is a known risk, and if it does lead to cancer, you are inevitably responsible for causing the cancer via your poor decision.

  151. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    140
    Gerry Delonzo

    It’s funny how you really, really want me to be saying this. I think you might have some of your own issues to deal with if you think it’s acceptable to use the phrase “dirty sluts.” Try actually being more respectful of women rather than just pretending to be.

    Idiot. I wasn’t calling anyone a dumb slut, I was saying that’s most likely behind your reasoning because consensual sex=consensual pregnancy. It was in fucking quotes and everything.

    143
    Gerry Delonzo

    “If the fetus is viable, they can be cared for by someone else after the abortion. If they can’t be, they aren’t fucking viable now are they?”

    Are you serious? Have you not been paying attention at all? Several people on this thread have come out in support of allowing for a fetus to be terminated (as in gone, dead, no longer living or capable of living, whatever phrase doesn’t offend you sensitive soul) PAST the viability dividing line. THAT’s what I am opposing.

    BULL.SHIT. You started this thread by bring up 38 week abortions, which by the way don’t always mean dead fetus, and Goslow.

  152. octopod says

    Terminating viable pregnancy IS NOT THE SAME THING AS destroying the fetus.

    Holy shit, dude, how many times does it need to be said? If you don’t think this is true, tell us why.

  153. opposablethumbs says

    But if someone consents to the act that leads to the pregnancy, that’s consenting to the pregnancy.

    Again, what a very silly thing to say! So … if you consent to get into a car, you consent to the risk of a car crash and the resulting damage; if you consent to go skiing you consent to having your legs broken; if you consent to going to a pub you consent to the risk of getting glassed because somebody didn’t like the look of your face? If you consent to holidaying in certain parts of the world, you consent to the risk of amoebic dysentery?
    No, silly lad, having sex is not consent to pregnancy.

    Also, you can’t have it both ways: if the foetus is viable, someone else can look after it after termination. If that’s not possible, then it wasn’t viable.

    And re my earlier question:

    So, Gerry, do you think that if someone agrees to donate a kidney to someone else and later changes their mind (for any reason, anything from getting cold feet up to and including discovering that the risk to their own health is greater than previously anticipated) they should nevertheless be legally obliged to donate that kidney and dragged off to theatre by force if they won’t go voluntarily?

    Do you think fathers should be legally obliged to donate organs to their children if they need them? Siblings to siblings? Children to parents? Anyone to anyone? Just trying to get an idea of what importance you place on lives, here.

    I’m frightfully sorry old chap, I’d better clarify this for you: if there were no other source available should this hypothetical volunteer-who-changed-their-mind be forced to donate a kidney against their will? Should a father be legally obliged to donate an organ to his child if there is no other source available? If not, why not?

  154. Gerry Delonzo says

    “No, they’re fetuses. Inside women. There’s no right to be born.”

    Actually, in many states, there is a right to be born past the viability point. Try again.

  155. says

    And in the ‘sand’ thread he is advocating for male-circumsision of toddlers. Never heard of him before he appeared these last days in these three threads, so curious indeed. Amateur contrarian? Idiot? Just a shithead? Could be all three of course.

    Indeed, it could.

  156. Gerry Delonzo says

    “I wasn’t calling anyone a dumb slut, I was saying that’s most likely behind your reasoning because consensual sex=consensual pregnancy. It was in fucking quotes and everything.”

    There it is again. Maybe you should just refrain from using the word entirely. How about that?

  157. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Terminating viable pregnancy IS NOT THE SAME THING AS destroying the fetus.
    Holy shit, dude, how many times does it need to be said?”

    Wow. Pay attention, since this isn’t getting through your exceptionally thick, Neanderthal skull: NO ONE is talking about terminating pregnancies where the fetus is not destroyed.

  158. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    162
    Gerry Delonzo

    “No, they’re fetuses. Inside women. There’s no right to be born.”

    Actually, in many states, there is a right to be born past the viability point. Try again.

    Which is wrong, because of consent and bodily autonomy issues, i.e. taking another person’s body and using it without their consent.

    If men had the same bodily autonomy that women are currently afforded by U.S. laws, we could hook up for months at time against their will. Shit, let’s transplant fetuses up in there then it’ll be the man’s fault! Clearly, he consented to pregnancy and caring for the fetus since he had sex too so it’s perfectly fine by Gerry’s “logic”.

    Law doesn’t equal right. Or are you going to start defending lynchings and genocide now? Guess what people? All those lynchings and all that genocide was a-okay! No need to worry about what’s going on in other parts of the world today either because it’s THE LAW.

    Whew. Isn’t that a fucking relief!?!?

    /sarcasm, since Gerry is particularly dense.

  159. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Again, what a very silly thing to say! So … if you consent to get into a car, you consent to the risk of a car crash and the resulting damage”

    You are absolutely consenting to the risk, as long as you are aware of the risk. I don’t even see how it is arguable that you are not consenting to the risk.

  160. Gerry Delonzo says

    “Law doesn’t equal right.”

    Since you opened the door, please go ahead and tell us how you determine what a “right” is. I’ll wait.

  161. says

    Actually, in many states, there is a right to be born past the viability point. Try again.

    Rights aren’t created by states. Laws are created by people, often based on prejudice. If you don’t recognize this, then you have to accept rights granted and not granted in Canada or Afghanistan as equally legitimate. It’s completely intellectually dishonest and inept to try to conflate rights derived from a rights philosophy, which is what you’re pompously claiming, with actually existing laws in whatever places. You’re trolling.

  162. azhael says

    eliminating post-viable female fetuses for any reason

    Not for the first time you have introduced a “female” where noone has put it. This, plus the astonishing number of times that you have ignored the fact that terminating a pregnancy when the fetus is viable does NOT mean killing the fetus, so that you can repeat over and over your beloved “you want to kill viable babies!!!!!” bullshit makes it very clear to me now that you are in fact a troll. I do believe you are having a big old laugh…mind you i also believe you are a monumental arsehole that is wasting everybody’s time with very transparent dishonesty.

  163. says

    @19 atheistblog

    Sorry I’m kinda late with this (and have calmed down considerably :) ) but take a look at this:

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

    Most of the countries south of the equator don’t allow elective abortion or have very stringent restrictions with it. A lot of them aren’t christian at all. From the same wiki link (which has further sources).

    Performing abortion only on the basis of a woman’s request is allowed in 29% of all countries, including in North America and in most European countries.

    Considering that the number of christians in the world is what, a third or something? you can’t absolve all the other religions from that. (Blanket statements are a bit of a pet peeve of mine.)

    ———————————————————————————————————————

    One thing about the argument from viability of the fetus that always annoys me is that its a timed argument. Eventually (I believe) medical sciences will be able to keep the vast majority of fetuses alive and bring them to term in the future (even if we had only 4 cells after conception for example). So would those that argue with viability now say that we have a moral obligation to bring all those fetuses in to the world? Or is there some limit they would accept?

    What about the thousands of left over embryos left over from artificial insemnation? (In certain nations afaik they always produce leftovers). Do we owe them all life as soon as technology would allow us the make them viable?

  164. opposablethumbs says

    Should a father be legally obliged to donate an organ to his child if there is no other source available? If not, why not?

    Gerry?

  165. octopod says

    OK, if you’re willing to say that smoking or eating grilled food is “consenting” to cancer, I’m willing to go with the idea that consensual sex is accepting some risk of pregnancy (risk adjusted to your method of contraception). But if you smoke, then get cancer, does the fact that you smoked mean you’re then ethically obligated to not get treatment for the cancer?

    Pregnancy is a medical condition, and one of the possible treatments for it is abortion.

  166. zmidponk says

    “Terminating viable pregnancy IS NOT THE SAME THING AS destroying the fetus.
    Holy shit, dude, how many times does it need to be said?”

    Wow. Pay attention, since this isn’t getting through your exceptionally thick, Neanderthal skull: NO ONE is talking about terminating pregnancies where the fetus is not destroyed.

    Yeah, and the only person talking about such terminations where the foetus is deliberately destroyed when it’s unnecessary is you, using a single doctor who was guilty of severe medical malpractice on multiple occasions to try to make out that this happens all the time. So you are seemingly talking in circles, for no reason at all, other than to try and make abortion sound bad.

  167. azhael says

    You are absolutely consenting to the risk, as long as you are aware of the risk. I don’t even see how it is arguable that you are not consenting to the risk.

    You are accepting the risk, yes, but if the accident happens, hopefully, inmediate medical intervention will be provided to try to minimize or prevent any damage to you. Accordingly, if you are female, you have sex and you are not 100% sterile, you accept some probability, however tiny, that you might get pregnant, at which point, medical intervention can prevent the pregnancy from going further.
    What you are suggesting is that if you have sex, you accept the risk of pregnancy, so you have to live with it. In the car accident scenario that would saying that since you knew the risks of driving a car, if you have said accident no medical intervention should be provided. Which is fucking evil, both in the car accident AND the unwanted pregnancy scenarios.

  168. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    164
    Gerry Delonzo

    “I wasn’t calling anyone a dumb slut, I was saying that’s most likely behind your reasoning because consensual sex=consensual pregnancy. It was in fucking quotes and everything.”

    There it is again. Maybe you should just refrain from using the word entirely. How about that?

    ….What? You’re really, really dumb. Guess the term slut shaming is out now since we can’t even use it to describe talking about people punishing women for acting outside societal sexual norms.

    165
    Gerry Delonzo

    Wow. Pay attention, since this isn’t getting through your exceptionally thick, Neanderthal skull: NO ONE is talking about terminating pregnancies where the fetus is not destroyed.

    ……That’s the first fucking time you’ve specified that, which mean you should shut the fuck up about late term abortions. Those are usually induced and only result when something has gone terribly wrong and the wanted fetuses dies.

    If forced birthers didn’t have so many laws on the books, Gosnell probably wouldn’t have happened. And there’s already laws on the books against what Gosnell did: murder. You can use one case and then force women from…what 22 weeks? 24 weeks? First heartbeat? First brainwave? on to continue a pregnancy. Especially not, when women can’t fucking get an abortion the moment she wants it.

    If a fetus dies from an abortion, it’s a side effect not the goal. She still has the right to choose abortion at any time. I don’t care if the fetus is 2 days or 22 weeks, no one has the right to use my body against my will.

    167
    Gerry Delonzo

    “Again, what a very silly thing to say! So … if you consent to get into a car, you consent to the risk of a car crash and the resulting damage”

    You are absolutely consenting to the risk, as long as you are aware of the risk. I don’t even see how it is arguable that you are not consenting to the risk.

    So if you’re in a car accident, you have to pay for your own damage and no medical care for you since you knew the risks.

  169. jrfdeux, mode d'emploi says

    So…because a fetus is viable the pregnant woman should automatically become an incubator for the state?

  170. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    NO ONE is talking about terminating pregnancies where the fetus is not destroyed.

    YOU ARE hypocrite.

  171. Gerry Delonzo says

    “What you are suggesting is that if you have sex, you accept the risk of pregnancy, so you have to live with it.”

    Nope. Only after viability of the fetus and only if carrying to term will not pose a serious health risk to the mother or the other extreme circumstances already mentioned.

  172. opposablethumbs says

    Should a father be legally obliged to donate an organ to his child if there is no other source available? If not, why not?

  173. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    179
    Gerry Delonzo

    “What you are suggesting is that if you have sex, you accept the risk of pregnancy, so you have to live with it.”

    Nope. Only after viability of the fetus and only if carrying to term will not pose a serious health risk to the mother or the other extreme circumstances already mentioned.

    And if the woman cannot get an abortion early enough?

    Too fucking bad then, you’re a mommy now *hands screaming newborn*
    Good fucking luck!

    It’s not like adoption or foster care is easy, quick and painless. Or side effect free or socially acceptable. And if you need help taking care of the child forced upon you, well if you were born in a red state you’re just fucked now aren’t you? Hell, you’ll be struggling to survive in the liberalist of states.

    All because *magic fetus potential*.

    Guess Gerry really took that “You can be anything you want to be when you grow up!” and forgot how to think. Probably still believes in the American Dream too.

  174. Gerry Delonzo says

    “So if you’re in a car accident, you have to pay for your own damage and no medical care for you since you knew the risks.”

    No, because (assuming the accident wasn’t your fault) there was an intervening agent who is more responsible for the accident.

  175. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    So, Gerry, you’ve already said that you have no trouble with late-term abortion to protect the life/health of the woman, right?

    You’ve also said that if the fetus is significantly deformed, genetically diseased, etc., you have no problem.

    You’ve also said that if the fetus is not destroyed and is in fact viable, you have no problem with terminating the pregnancy.

    So, Gerry, how many late-term abortions don’t meet one of the above–and if you can’t say, then what the fuck are you talking about?

  176. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    182
    Gerry Delonzo

    “So if you’re in a car accident, you have to pay for your own damage and no medical care for you since you knew the risks.”

    No, because (assuming the accident wasn’t your fault) there was an intervening agent who is more responsible for the accident.

    But if it is your fault, you can pay for it all and be left to die in the streets?

    So, like, a birth control failure means a woman could get an abortion any time she wanted? Because she took precautions and it wasn’t her fault it failed…

    Oh, no, wait this is your “reasoning” behind letting rape victims get abortions, isn’t it?
    Because it’s not about the fetus, it’s about the sex but you can’t just say that out right.

  177. ajbjasus says

    @ 68

    There are valid medical reasons for breast enlargement surgery.

    Indeed, that is undoubtedly true, but not for all breast enhancements. What would be the valid reasons for an increase to DD ?

    2. An individual’s medical records (including the reasons for any particular procedure) are nobody else’s business. Decisions about, and the reasons for, any treatment are between the patient (or their representative) and his/her doctor(s).

    Unless you make a point of publicising them; you may be happy to accept support, but not criticism.

    3. Sharing any amount of information about yourself does not entitle anybody else to other information you have chosen to keep private.

    What has been implied from private information here ?

  178. consciousness razor says

    Gerry Delonzo:

    No, because (assuming the accident wasn’t your fault) there was an intervening agent who is more responsible for the accident.

    But assuming that person were the one responsible, they shouldn’t get medical care? How the fuck is that supposed to follow? Is it because our laws are supposed to enforce what some jackass like you thinks that person “consented” to, not what’s good for everyone in a society? And how the fuck is responsibility the same thing as consent?

    And would they have to fill out a questionnaire or some shit first, so we can get inside their heads? Why would the state have any interest in getting inside a person’s head? What difference does it make in the real world if a person gets an abortion for reason X or gets an abortion for reason Y? What the fuck are these laws supposed to be enforcing, how the fuck are they supposed to do it, and why the fuck would anyone want such laws?

  179. Al Dente says

    We’ve got Gerry Delonzo, another forced birther lying about late term abortions and pretending they’re common.

    I can understand the forced birthers making reasonable arguments but it doesn’t help Gerry Delonzo’s case when he continues to lie and lie about abortions and pro-choice people. Maybe Gerry Delonzo knows he doesn’t actually have any reasonable arguments about forcing women to be incubators and so he has to lie in hopes nobody notices his lies.

  180. says

    Gerry

    See, I’m not in the least angry, I’m thoroughly amused!

    You find this subject amusing? Fuck you. As someone who has had an abortion: FUCK YOU.

    You’re having an amusing time about a very serious subject matter that actually affects real woman. This isn’t an “amusing” subject: THIS IS REAL LIFE.

    What the fuck is wrong with you?!

  181. Nepenthe says

    Has Gerry gotten around to explaining why he thinks post-viability abortions are wrong yet? I saw that he alluded to it being against the law in 162, but I admit that I just skimmed and may have missed it if he pulled out a decent argument.

  182. Cynickal says

    @171 Avera Bregen

    The Wikipedia statistics are misleading.

    Abortion in China is legal and is a government service available on request for women.[1] In addition to virtually universal access to contraception, abortion is a way for China to contain its population in accordance with its one-child policy.[2]

    And since China accounts for 12% of the world’s population…

  183. says

    And in the ‘sand’ thread he is advocating for male-circumsision of toddlers. Never heard of him before he appeared these last days in these three threads, so curious indeed. Amateur contrarian? Idiot? Just a shithead? Could be all three of course.

    At this point I’m going with classic trolling (and classic misogyny – they’re not mutually exclusive). There’s been a lot of gish galloping; not providing citations, demanding them from others, and then ignoring them; ignoring evidence, comments, and questions; expressing amusement and general callousness; using concepts and terms inconsistently and then asking other people to define the terms he introduced; and persistent willful stupidity.

  184. says

    No, because (assuming the accident wasn’t your fault) there was an intervening agent who is more responsible for the accident.

    So if it was your fault, we should deny all medical care and leave you to die in the streets, because you obviously consented to it? You wouldn’t happen to be a libertarian, would you?

  185. zenlike says

    So we’ve now gone from ‘consistent view of human rights’ to ‘if it’s the law, it’s moral, morality doesn’t exist without the law’. Yawn, yeah, fucking boring troll who gallops about the place without a single coherent point.

  186. says

    I’ve missed the developments in this thread. Tell me, has the douchebag said anything so far that hasn’t been addressed a dozen times before in other threads? I don’t expect so, but I’m asking, just in case.

  187. says

    Yer boring, Gerry. If stirring up shit amuses you, well, that’s pathetic. You’ve presented nothing here that can reasonably be termed an argument.

  188. Steve LaBonne says

    I’m not convinced there is any such thing as a “secular” forced-birther who isn’t a troll.

  189. says

    Steve LaBonne #200
    Really? An organization like Secular Pro-Life has been going for years. That’s a bit much for a joke, don’t you think?

  190. Gregory Greenwood says

    zenlike @ 139;

    Gerry,

    I might point out to you that your particular brand of ‘internally consistent human rights’ include violating the bodily autonomy of male toddlers because you are pro-circumcision (see the ‘sand’ thread), but you would probably not get the point I’m trying to make.

    Well, Gerry is consistent on one point at least – he really, really hates the notion of bodily autonomy for entire segments of society who aren’t like him. Whether it is women who are having abortions contrary to the wishes or Gerry, or toddlers with the temerity to have uncut penises, he is very quick indeed to adopt a proprietary attitude toward their flesh and to tell them how they should be living their lives.

    Oddly enough, I somehow doubt that he would be quite so eager to surrender his own bodily autonomy. Getting circumcised as a necessity was one thing, but what about the suggestion made in jest on a thread a few weeks ago about instituting mandatory vasectomies for all men, after provisions are made to store sperm samples, as a means of redusing the need for abortions and avoiding unwanted pregnancy? I wonder if Gerry would place such a low value on bodily autonomy then?

  191. says

    @ 68 “There are valid medical reasons for breast enlargement surgery.”

    Ha ha ha, NO THERE AREN’T!

    Seriously, name just one medical condition that requires breast enhancement.

    Transitioning (MtF)? Nope, the hormones alone will make them grow, just like any girl going through puberty. We’re not guaranteed a “great rack”.

    Mastectomy? Nope, still not a “need enhancements” situation.

    And there aren’t any legitimate psychological conditions that require enhancement or other cosmetic surgery, either.

  192. latsot says

    @AsqJames

    Yeah, I look forward to our beloved politicians wiping away tears as they tell us of the many people who seek abortions for cosmetic reasons in order to garner fame. This one instance will become an insidious plot against all we (so we’re told) stand for. This woman will come to stand for All That Is Wrong With Young People Today as though shaming women into risky abortions or having babies they didn’t want was What Was Right About Old People When They Had Their Roll Of The Fucking Dice.

    The only bad reason for a woman to have an abortion is if she’s pressured into it against her will. The fact that it’s also a leading bad reason for women to have a child they don’t want is hardly coincidental.

  193. chigau (違う) says

    And there aren’t any legitimate psychological conditions that require enhancement or other cosmetic surgery, either.
    google “reconstructive surgery” and look at the images

  194. chrisdevries says

    Gonna repost this because it got lost in the clutter of the Gerry-induced debate, sorry if you read it already but I think it’s an important point and is related to the actual topic of the post:

    I think the way she did this, publicly, is actually very courageous and even righteous (in the non-80s surfer-dude language sense). She went out on a limb and in doing so showed society that many people in the UK still have an issue with a woman’s right to choose not to continue a pregnancy (regardless of her reasons for doing so). She also, by being a public figure, is helping to both normalise abortion and to make other women realise that they CAN choose to put themselves and their own aspirations first without feeling guilty or selfish. This is feminist activism at its best; if only there wasn’t the very real risk to her own career path, that she might be stigmatised in an industry where public perception is everything.

    *************

    As for the late-term abortion issue, I have seen no evidence that it’s really an issue at all since so few post-viability abortions take place and in many cases they amount to inducing pregnancy and delivering a living baby. But the path chosen should be a medical decision, made by the pregnant woman based on medical advice rather than a legal one.

  195. ajbjasus says

    @ 208. Yes there are psychological conditions that require enhancement or other cosmetic surgery. Its hard to see how this applies here, though as Josie was a very healthy looking woman prior to surgery, and indeed garnered another round of publicity by telling journalists that the implants had caused her psychological trauma, and wanted the NHS to remove them. Unfortunately spending money on these cases means it reduces the funds available for truly deserving cases

  196. Anri says

    Ah, Gerry has played the ‘birth is arbitrary’ card.

    Ok, Gerry, the Post Test:
    Find a fencepost. Preferably a 4 x 4.
    Stand near it, put your hand on it.
    The post is now outside of your body.
    Now, shove it up your ass.
    The post is now inside of your body.
    Is this an arbitrary distinction?
    Do you believe you could determine the difference?
    Do you feel you have no right to change your mind about having inserted it?
    Does your answer change based on the gender of the subject?

    …please don’t let answering these complex and difficult questions distract you from your numerous references to non-medical, post-viable, fetus-destroying abortions, which I’m completely certain you are just about to produce.

  197. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    ajbjasus @ 210

    Unfortunately spending money on these cases means it reduces the funds available for truly deserving cases

    So, basically, she made the choice to get implants therefore she should have bore the brunt of the effects of her decision because she knew it was a possibility she might regret it later but did not have any reasonable expectation that she would regret it. I suppose it’s in order to teach her a bit about personal responsibility. Is that the gist of what you’re trying to say?

  198. Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened says

    Gerry Delonzo #24:

    Just wondering if PZ believes in “choice” if the mother chooses to get an abortion in, say, the 38th week of pregnancy.

    Azykaroth #29:

    Has that ever happened, except due to the onset of catastrophic medical issues?

    Can you name even one time?

    Gerry Delonzo #31:

    It happens quite frequently beyond the 24-week viability period. Surprised that you don’t know about this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kermit_Gosnell

    You really never heard of this? Wow. I guess ignorance is bliss, huh?

    Fuck me, where’d those goal posts go? I swear they were right here! *scratches head*

    Nb// bolding mine.

  199. ajbjasus says

    I happen to live in the same area as Josie. The original story broke at the same time I was struggling to get decent palliative care for my terminally ill father out, of the stretched NHS budget. She asked the NHS to fund a cosmetic operation, which a few months later she said she wanted to be reversed. At the same time she said she’d like to have “lots more cosmetic surgery”. She then consulted a no-win no-fee lawyer to try and sue the NHS for Compensation for going ahead with the enhancement: ‘I want in excess of £10,000. Anything I can get over that is a bonus.’.

    So yes – I think there is a bit here about personal responsibility, in terms of abusing the healthcare services which everybody in the UK contributes to for the good of the sick and vulnerable.

  200. Amphiox says

    Only after viability of the fetus….

    Once a fetus is viable, pregnancy termination if done by a properly trained medical professional is done through induced birth.

    The so-called late term abortion is only done in cases where the fetus is not viable due to a defect or other problem or if the woman’s life is at risk and an induced birth is simply not possible.

    With respect to the general abortion access debate, the whole issue is an irrelevant side-point.

    Gosnell is an example of medical malpractice. Nothing more.

  201. David Marjanović says

    Huh. Fucked up the CS somehow. My bad.

    You also fucked up Azkyroth’s name. :-)

  202. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    *off topic*
    At the moment, the picture of the rift is showing on my screen with the latest posts. The picture reminds me of the pictures from the Mars Rovers, with cliffs, sand, and ejecta. Until the glacier/river in the background.
    *resume topic*

  203. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Apologies, my #219 should have been posted in the Rifts thread. Mea culpa. *walks off mutter hail Ramens….*

  204. Crimson Clupeidae says

    If someone consents to the act that leads to the pregnancy, that’s consenting to the pregnancy. If the person wants to terminate prior to viability, I don’t have a problem with that.

    Gerry dodged a similar question earlier by trying to blame someone else, but by this ‘logic’, if he’s in an auto accident, and it’s his fault, then he shouldn’t be allowed medical treatment, right?

  205. opposablethumbs says

    I’m still pissed off that Gerry hasn’t answered anybody’s questions.

    Should a father be legally obliged to donate an organ to his child if there is no other source available? If not, why not?

    I just bet Gerry had some real pearls of wisdom, but perhaps we’ll never know.

  206. chris61 says

    @222

    A father shouldn’t be legally obliged to donate an organ to his child under any conditions but neither should he be surprised if friends, relatives and Internet strangers judge him harshly for failing to do so.

  207. nich says

    chris61@223:

    Everything in your answer before the “but” was sufficient. What was the point of everything after?

  208. opposablethumbs says

    A father shouldn’t be legally obliged to donate an organ to his child

    Yes, I know that and you know that – but I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for Gerry to admit that he knows that (you may have noticed that the question was addressed to him; it arises specifically out of his blether). Gerry (upthread a ways) is a forced-birther, you see, hence my question to him. Which is why, of course, I don’t really expect him to give an honest answer to this question or any other one like it.

    neither should he be surprised if friends, relatives and Internet strangers judge him harshly for failing to do so.

    This is likely – but it’s also, I would argue, irrelevant to the point at issue (since before birth, of course, there is no child but a foetus. And there are some very significant differences between a foetus and an infant, not the least of which are brain oxygen levels).

  209. chris61 says

    nich@224 The point of everything after is that being judged harshly is what is happening to Josie Cunningham.

  210. nich says

    @226: Except the question was asked of Gerry Delonzo, and even related back to the OP it was also pretty pointless or at least trivial?

  211. opposablethumbs says

    There may perfectly well be things Cunningham has done that are open to criticism, but having an abortion isn’t one of them. On the contrary, if someone doesn’t want to continue a pregnancy that’s a bloody good reason not to do so. Abortion is the responsible course of action (and the argument that many people have made in the media, that Cunningham appears to them to be an irresponsible person, is all the more reason not to oppose her choice in this matter). (As should be obvious, my own (and indeed anyone’s) opinion of her character is completely irrelevant).

  212. chris61 says

    opposablethumbs@228 & nich@227

    I don’t pretend to have read all the discussion about this but my impression from what I’ve read is that at least some of the flack that she is getting isn’t because she’s decided to get an abortion (which is purely a personal decision) but because the manner in which she has publicly announced she’s planning on getting an abortion (or at least the manner in which the media has reported it) leaves the impression that she’s open to reconsider if the right offer comes along.

  213. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    226
    chris61

    nich@224 The point of everything after is that being judged harshly is what is happening to Josie Cunningham.

    Threats, sexist insults, slut shaming and ablism goes far beyond judging harshly and is never okay. Any father judged for not donating to their child won’t face the awfulness of what happens to women so it’s not really comparable. Plus abortion has huge stigma, which donating/not donating doesn’t have, so any judgements about a woman’s choice should be told to fuck off anyways in hopes of making abortion socially acceptable.

  214. ButchKitties says

    If someone consents to the act that leads to the pregnancy, that’s consenting to the pregnancy

    People can back out of organ donation after signing the consent forms. They can do this even if it means the intended recipient will die. There is only one reason to sign a organ donation consent form: to become a donor. There are all kinds of safeguards in place to keep people from being coerced into donating.

    There are lots of reasons to consent to sex that have nothing to do with procreation. People are raped, and they are raped with alarming frequency. People can have sex while taking actions to avoid pregnancy, only to have those actions fail.

    So why should having sex be irrevocable consent to pregnancy when a signed donation consent form is not an irrevocable obligation to donate to the person who needs your organ or tissue to live?