Tuesday, October 6, 2009

My Position on Abortion

OK, First things last... What's with all the Right-Wing advertising on this site?! First I had to look at Ann Coulter's ugly mug, now it's Campus Reform and their "End Left Wing Bias in the Classroom!" (Yeah, I mean GOD FORBID we do any THINKING about things like FACTS in the CLASSROOM! If that happens, 98% of the Republican voter base might come their senses and stopping voting that way! The horror!) Anyway, I couldn't care less, actually. Let 'em advertise here. It just means that THEY are paying ME to make fun of THEM. Kinda cool how that works, huh? LOL. So please feel free to visit any of my numerous right-wing sponsors. Make sure to tell 'em "Niceguy Eddie" sent you! LOL. HAHAHA!


OK... ABORTION.


Up front, let me say that this is nothing more than a statement of my position. There's no arguments here, no attempt to convince anyone, and no logical philosophical proofs - like what I had in the ESCR thread. This is just my OPINION. Yes, it happens to be what I think is he most reasonable position; the "way [to borrow a phrase from Rush Limbaugh] things ought to be," if you will. And, JUST LIKE Rush in, "The Way Things Ought to Be," I'm not going to make much of an effort to explain WHY they "ought to be" that way. I'm just going to put it out there, and then hear y'all have to say.


One thing I'd like to clear up first... PRO-LIFE vs. PRO-CHOICE. This is, as every liberal already knows, a completely bullshit way to define one's position. I've never met ANYONE who I could reasonably describe as ANTI-LIFE or PRO-DEATH or even PRO-ABORTION. This isn't a moral debate - everyone I've ever met concedes the point that it's immoral; that's it's arguably the worst possible choice. The debate is not about it's morality, but rather about how to define it's LEGALITY. IOW: Does I feel the need to take away SOMEONE ELSE'S right to make a choice, just because I FEEL a certain way about it? Is it any of my business? No, not at all. (Not that that ever stopped social conservatives from sticking their nose into other people's business!) So there's really only ONE WAY to define the camps: PRO-CHOICE and ANTI-CHOICE. "Pro-life" is a bullshit label and the fact that it has caught on is yet one more piece of evidence against the existence of the "liberal media." (If you want more, you can read THIS, or just check out MMFA.) And, as anyone who has read my Doctrine of Choice post (or know about my 5th principle,) should be able to infer: While I strongly believe that abortion is, in fact, immoral, I am PRO-CHOICE.


Here's how I would set it up. (And yes, I realize that there are both conservatives and liberals who will disagree with a lot of this. That's fine.)


1) Partial-Birth Abortion is banned. Period. If one of you is an MD and can give me a clear example of when this would be NECESSARY to save a mother's life - that's NECESSARY now, not PREFERABLE - then I'll reconsider. What's more, I would ban all third trimester abortions anyway or, if you prefer, since trimesters are kind of arbitrary, all abortions after the earliest point of viability unless the mother's LIFE (that's LIFE, not HEALTH) is in danger, and this threat to her life cannot be averted via a Cesarean Section delivery. (And don't bring up the ectopic pregnancy example here, because if you let one of those go to this far, the mother will already be dead! Those have to be dealt with RIGHT AWAY! So they don't apply at this point!)


2) In the Second Trimester, (or from the beginning of it until the point of viability if you want to go that way, I'm flexible there) abortion will be permitted if there is a threat to the HEALTH of the mother. We can quibble about how broad or narrow to make this, of course, but the guiding principle in the second trimester is that there must be a diagnosable, documented threat to the mother's HEALTH. And if this were made into law, I would have those specific conditions listed out. The debate can then shift to what belongs on the list and what doesn't. Obviously anything that can KILL YOU goes on it, but things like depression, for example, which are more sympathetic than fatal, or like high-blood pressure, which is usually addressed with bed-rest can be debated. (And I know how lousy bed-rest is - my wife dealt with it for about the last five months or so. It sucks. In and of itself though, it is not a justification for abortion, IMHO. Not unless it can't be controlled that way.)


3) In the first trimester, there will be no restrictions placed on abortion at all. Abortion by choice, therefore, MUST be a decision that is made NOW. It's a tough decision, I realize, but the clock ticks very fast, and if you're considering an abortion, it's time to get your shit together and make a choice. The area gets grey VERY FAST, and no one can look at a 10-week ultra sound and tell me that's not a BABY:


So I'd let you have the choice, but you don't have all the time in the world to make it. Just a few weeks really, since most people are already several weeks along by the time they find out. What's more: No exceptions for rape or incest are needed, since these can be dealt with in the first trimester, without need for such justifications.

Just as an aside: Why do we say, "rape or incest" anyway? If the "incest" was not consensual, isn't just a more specific form of rape? If it was consensual, then why would a "pro-lifer" allow an exception for it? Is an embryo OK to destroy provided that it's conception was sufficiently icky? And, if one wants to be truly principled about this, why should any pro-life position allow for these exceptions? If you believe that an embryo is a child, and abortion murder, then tell me: What did the child do to deserve to be killed? This is why I'm basically pro-choice. Because there is no principled, logically consistent pro-life position that any moderate person can stomach, or that voters (outside of South Dakota) would approve of. "Rape or Incest" exception are a pro-lifers cop-out to appeal to moderate people. But make no mistake: These are PRO-CHOICE exceptions. So, as I said before, it's not about PROTECTING LIFE, it's about LIMITING CHOICE. So "Pro-Life" is, again, a bullshit label. "Anti-Choice" is the only moniker we should use.

3 comments:

  1. The Doctrine of Choice is pretty clear on this, then. For a certain amount of time, the mother's choice can't be violated. After that point, excepting medical concerns, the "baby" has rights. I agree that it can be cut back to the first trimester.

    "Is an embryo OK to destroy provided that it's conception was sufficiently icky?"

    Don't you think that incest has a very strong element of abuse inherent to it? We recognize age as a mitigating factor in whether "consent" exists, so why shouldn't familial relations be a factor as well?

    "'Anti-Choice' is the only moniker we should use."

    You're not actually advocating the use of "anti-choice" from the left, it's just a "way things ought to be" comment, right?

    By the way, you have "1)" listed twice.

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  2. I forgot to mention the so-called "partial-birth abortion" part. What if that is considered "preferable" because it decreases the odds of harm or death for the woman? Even if you're talking about a few percentage points in difference, then there are women being harmed or killed because that procedure is banned, while other abortive procedures would still destroy the fetus. Does that principle hold up under those conditions? That would seem to be an effect on people based on the "ickyness" of the procedure.

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  3. With regards to the 'doctrine of choice,' you've got it dead on. It's not a perfect compromise, but it is a principled one.

    Regarding the "abuse" aspect of incest, it's like I said: If the sex is forced (non-consesual) then already meets the requirement for rape, the with extra baggage is superfluous. If it's consensual (say, a brother and sister, 18 and 17 years of age) now that's INCEST, but why grant an exception for abortion over it? Why not just say rape, and codify that this includes ANY non-consensual form of concepcion, regardless.

    As for partial birth... Like I said, if an MD can provide a scenario, then fine, I can be pursuaded. But I've just never been presented with one. You say "a few % points," and yes, I realize that can mean a lot of people... But I'd like spmething more specific. If it's used 10,000 times a year, to decrease the number of death by 1... I don't see that as 'worth it', especially when that level of reduction could just be within the sampling margin of error. If it's restricted to only those high risk cases, and used 100 times to save 10 lives? Yeah, I could see that. But I haven't yet heard the numbers or scenario's yet that would change my mind.

    Also my biggest beef with partial-birth is the LATENESS that it tends to be used, and the fact that two inches farther you a LIVE BIRTH. If you're talking about doing it in the first trimester, then yeah, I guess I could see that. But my understanding is that it's typically used later on. I could be wrong about that, like I said: I could be talked out of it, but I'd need some numbers to go by.

    (And thanks for "two #1's" catch! I'll fix that!)

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