Jessica Valenti proves stupidity once again

Why would you trust a teen to raise a kid, but not to have an abortion?

Because one is the ending of another life and the other is not the ending of another life.

We do, after all, have a rather more rigorous process leading up to the execution of someone than the process by which we decide to do nothing to someone. That latter, often enough, just being the decision to not do anything.

64 thoughts on “Jessica Valenti proves stupidity once again”

  1. Also ‘proving stupidity’ in that carrying to term / giving birth is not exactly passive and the equivalent of ‘doing nothing’ – indeed giving birth alone typically involves a lot of pushing and shoving and quite a bit of cost and personal risk.

    Tim, I wonder would you accept similar imposition, cost and risk to ‘not end another life’. If so please cancel your plans for the next 9 months and report for duty tomorrow at 9. You will be saving lives (or at least whatever I deem to be a human life). Oh, it will probably hurt a lot and injury is almost assured, but there is only a small chance that you will be killed or disabled. Also it will probably cost you a considerable amount but what’s that compared to (whatever I deem to be) a life?

  2. FOD:”Tim, I wonder would you accept similar imposition, cost and risk to ‘not end another life’. If so please cancel your plans for the next 9 months and report for duty tomorrow at 9. You will be saving lives (or at least whatever I deem to be a human life). Oh, it will probably hurt a lot and injury is almost assured, but there is only a small chance that you will be killed or disabled. Also it will probably cost you a considerable amount but what’s that compared to (whatever I deem to be) a life?”

    If you share responsibility for putting that life into motion–esp if that was because you nor your “partner” couldn’t be arsed to use contraception–then you DO have some obligation. The law says you can duck it. Hoo-fuckin’-ray.

  3. Now the sexual harassment, and in one case rape, of dozens of women has shocked Germany.

    What is particularly disturbing is that the attacks appear to have been organised. Around 1,000 young men arrived in large groups, seemingly with the specific intention of carrying out attacks on women.

    Angela Merkel has organised the greatest mass rape of German women since the Red Army.

  4. FOD
    Women don’t stop their lives for 9 months when they get pregnant. At least the women I know don’t. They get on with life. Surprising what pregnant women can manage to do.

    Not a lot of shame left any more to use as a reason. We’ve nearly all gone beyond that now.

    Birth is painful? You bet, like getting beaten up (the real deal, not slapped around a bit, try it, it hurts and for weeks after. It is also psychologically crippling), or having half-a-dozen cancer ops which involve having ribs broken… Or maybe not quite as bad as that. It’s actually part and parcel of the marvellous tapestry of life.

    Having an abortion or not, is not a question of trust.

    I can understand, but don’t share, the opinion that abortion is merely like blowing your nose. Seems warped to me, but it takes all sorts.

    Can you understand that some of us have the problem that at some point (we all argue about when the point is, some say from conception), the fetus is a new human, is not part of a woman’s body and therefore has a right to protection?

    The worst I have heard is that its rights begin once it has left hospital, from a democrat senator in the States, I think. A lot of people have a problem with that and it is not a religious stance (although I know what the Catholic church thinks and in that case, I coincide).

    I’m not telling 16 year olds not to fuck (I’d be a hypocrite if I did), but do use protection if you don’t want a child. If not, accept the consequences of your irresponsibility. I no longer accept claims that there isn’t enough sex education out there. All you have to do is watch prime time telly and you can soon pick it all up if your parents are too stupid to tell you. We all seem to learn where the dick goes and all seem to laugh at rubber jokes!

    For you, those consequences are going for an abortion which is nothing like going to term which is apparently sheer hell and (I imagine) a patriarchal torture imposed on….

    For me, the consequences are respecting the rights of the new as yet unborn human and going to term. If you don’t want the responsibility of raising the child give the child up for adoption.

    There is no way for both views to co-exist other than giving way and society has already done that for me. Just don’t ask me to applaud.

    And yes I know about war rape victims and deformities and all the other bad stuff that happens. But it’s not the subject under debate, here.

  5. Mr Ecks:

    “If you share responsibility for putting that life into motion–esp if that was because you nor your “partner” couldn’t be arsed to use contraception–then you DO have some obligation.”

    That’s begging the question again. And I notice as soon as something might be required of you then it’s not about saving lives after all.

    Anyway, since you are not ‘responsible’ for the situation of some random fetus, you can just ignore it and do nothing about that too.

    “The law says you can duck it.”

    Translation: you don’t have any obligation.

    Nor is there any legal obligation in any similar case, not since slavery was outlawed.

  6. Around 1000 men is a battalion?

    Large groups are platoons or companies?

    Converging on a planned objective.

    Still, the world is clearly better off for them sponging off the German taxpayer than defending their own countries.

  7. bilbaoboy

    “Can you understand that some of us have the problem that at some point (we all argue about when the point is, some say from conception), the fetus is a new human,”

    When the life of a ‘new human’ begins is pretty much a matter of perspective – but a zygote can turn into anything from 0 to 6+ walking, talking children, and the most likely outcome is 0. Also since two zygotes can fuse into one and become a human chimera, conception is the one point you could pick that completely fails to mesh with either common sense or reality.

    “There is no way for both views to co-exist”

    Well, you could try paying women to give birth. Maybe 10 or 20k would convince some woman who wasn’t facing an immediate threat to her life.

  8. Totally fucked up the HTML. Sorry.

    Very interesting link, though. That picture of Max and Carolin with the muslim economic migrant – sorry, refugee – does, as you say, suggest cuckoldry. Perhaps little Max likes to watch.

  9. FOD

    “conception is the one point you could pick that completely fails to mesh with either common sense or reality”

    You have an interesting take on common sense and reality, not to mention logic. Nothing that you say about zygotes supports your position: instead it bolsters your opponents’.

    Conception is the point at which a new human life (or lives) becomes possible: not a guarantee of anything, but without it there’s nothing. It’s perverse to choose any other point on the timeline, because any such arbitrary point is just that: arbitrary.

  10. Frank

    Interesting and quite hellish view of childbirth you express here. One wonders why tens of millions of women sign up for it every year. And then do it again. And cry with rhe most exquisite please at its conclusion. And seem to regard it as the most joyous of experiences.and yes, I speak from personal witness.
    Perhaps in your desire to make the case you’ve made since before whenever you have lost sight of our common humanity.

  11. Fen Tiger

    “Conception is the point at which a new human life (or lives) becomes possible: not a guarantee of anything, but without it there’s nothing.”

    The same is true of meiosis. Indeed the difference between an fertilised egg and an unfertilised one isn’t very much, and clearly many of *those* turn out to be what everyone would agree are “human lives”.

    The same is true of lunch for that matter. “[Lunch] is the point at which a new human life (or lives) becomes possible: not a guarantee of anything, but without it there’s nothing.”.

    Therefore life begins at lunchtime.

    “It’s perverse to choose any other point on the timeline, because any such arbitrary point is just that: arbitrary.”

    Including yours.

    Which not even you claim is the start of a human being’s life, just the possibility of such.

  12. Ironman,

    “Interesting and quite hellish view of childbirth you express here. One wonders why tens of millions of women sign up for it every year. And then do it again. ”

    So what? People volunteer for all sorts of risks like donating bone marrow or entering burning buildings, because they freely decide it’s worth it. But generally we don’t force people to do so because someone else thinks it a good idea.

    Another difference is perhaps that we generally applaud such people as charitable and heroic rather than, as is the ‘pro-life’ tendency, calling the people involved sluts, benefits scroungers and the like.

  13. It’s an oddity that many who support the right to abortion are opposed to the death penalty.

    And vice versa

  14. AndrewC – the way I see it, babies are innocent and deserve protection while murderers deserve to hang.

    Not really an oddity, the vast majority of people throughout history believed the same.

  15. There is of course a view that abortion is OK up until the foetus is capable of independent life. So can we abort the unemployed?
    On the off topic, I love the Justice Minister’s confidence that the recent events in Cologne etc. have nothing to do with the recent wave of migrants.

  16. What Steve said – except 99% of those in favour of the death penalty think *some* murderers deserve to hang. Ancient societies distinguished between accidental killing and murder, (e.g Dt IV, 41, weregild in mediaeval Scandinavia, “not guilty on grounds of insanity” etc.)
    Conversely various patriarchies permit abortions in cases where it seemed justified.
    Feminists want abortion at will and claim that we want to execute all homicides, regardless of guilt.

  17. Frank

    If you can find me anywhere, anywhere at all, describing pregnant women that way then I will take you seriously. If, however, you rely on creating a straw man to make your case then you will need to forgive me sneering at your inadequate grasp of the discussion.

    Again, comparing childbirth, for which tens of millions of women willimgly sign up every year, with entering a burning building – which given the intense heat is in reality more akin to suicide than “Backdraft” heroics – is risible.

    So to Ms Valenti’s stupidity. Tim actually misquotes her; she doesn’t as such suggest we trust teens to raise the child, but rather to choose to put it up for adoption. Her contrast, however, is with undergoing a “10 minute proceedure”. A wholly inadequate way to describe the moral decision being taken; ergo she – with our strawman-sowing friend Frank – needs to find an anodyne term far removed as she can from the enormity of the decision.

    We are though, as usual with her, in ‘pick your stupidity from the list’ territory. I think the idea that a judge – any genuine jurist – would grant an abortion to a teenager without knowing any details at all of name or background is just beautiful.

  18. Surreptitious Evil

    1000 men could pass for a regiment in the modern British Army.

    As I said – it the unit is a “battalion”. We do have one-battalion regiments, particularly in the Guards and the Cavalry, but the line slime have gone to big regiments (5 + 2 reservist battalions) and the Corps call their 800-1000 person units a variety of things.

  19. The vast majority of people through history have gone with “quickening” as the point of ensoulment, not conception. Even the Catholic Church only changed to life begins at conception in the 1800s.

  20. Commentard from El Reg

    My wife, currently pregnant for the first time after assisted conception (so there is no doubt that she (and I) want children, is having such a hard time with the pregnancy that she reckons that if men had to go through it, we would have invented in vitro gestation by now. Incidentally, she is extremely pro-choice – “no-one tells a person how their body is to be used”.

    Regarding people telling people what they should do, there is some resonance here on the topics of abortion and Syrian immigration – it seems that there is a bit of an attitude of “I think people should do the risky thing” around it. Women should go through pregancy that they don’t want, and Syrians should stay and fight in a war they don’t want, regardless of the personal cost. How did those of you who hold this view become so arrogant?

    On a final point, I’ve been involved in these discussions professionally for some years, and I lean very much to the point of view that, at the earliest, birth is the point at which a foetus becomes a life with legal protection.

  21. Ironman,

    “If you can find me anywhere, anywhere at all, describing pregnant women that way then I will take you seriously.”

    I didn’t say you had (what was that you were you saying about strawmen?). I said it was the ‘pro-life’ tendency, and it is. You can find examples all over, even some people in this thread are already talking about ‘shame’ and ‘irresponsibility’.

    “Again, comparing childbirth, for which tens of millions of women willimgly sign up every year, with entering a burning building – which given the intense heat is in reality more akin to suicide than “Backdraft” heroics – is risible.”

    Strawman again. No such ‘comparison’ was made. I pointed out that just because some or even millions of people choose to do something does not imply that it is safe or a good idea for everyone. The risks are there whether some people willingly accept them or not.

    In any case, it is still true that pregnancy and childbirth are among the leading killers of women, especially teenagers, worldwide (including the third world). And that is just risk of death. Even in the first world, morning sickness is so common that it is considered normal. Gestational diabetes is common and can result in a woman being on bedrest and a drip. Episiotomy and stitches are common too. Yes, there is a reason that childbirth very often takes place in a hospital. And that’s just the immediate personal risk – raising kids isn’t free either.

    These are all real costs and risks and if you don’t understand them you have no business glibly requiring, or even suggesting, that someone else accept them because of your morals.

  22. O/t

    On The One Show Anita Rani has just referred to Adrian Lester as a “BLACK” actor.

    We await the Twitter storm.

    Don’t we?

  23. Ironman,

    Interesting and quite hellish view of childbirth you express here. One wonders why tens of millions of women sign up for it every year. And then do it again. And cry with rhe most exquisite please at its conclusion. And seem to regard it as the most joyous of experiences.and yes, I speak from personal witness.

    Well, it can be quite hellish. I’m acquainted with a woman who had tried with her partner to become pregnant for quite some time, to no avail – that was hellish. Then she became pregnant with quadruplets and was told by doctors that the circumstances were such that there would be a high risk that none of the babies would survive, that she ought to consider terminating two to give the other two a better chance. After much tearful and heartbreaking discussion with her husband, they decided to follow the medical advice. Subsequently, the two remaining babies were born very prematurely and died within days. Quite hellish.

    Of course, you think she is a murderer so you probably don’t have a jot of sympathy.

  24. Surreptitious Evil

    Of course, you think she is a murderer so you probably don’t have a jot of sympathy

    I don’t think she’s a murdress and, even if she were, I would have sympathy (err, autoincorrect suggested “stoat hub”?) for her. I have sympathy for some people who are blatantly murderers – a controversial example being ex-Sgt Blackman. Clearly a murderer. Justly punished. Loads of sympathy.)

    We’re not as monolithic a block as people might think. We even have some sane lefties. Although they are heavily outnumbered by the nutters (from all sides.)

  25. I rationalise abortion by pinching an idea from an archaeology book I read ( Lucy: Edey and Johansson ) that to be human is to love, to go out of your way for another living being far more than any of the Great Apes do that we’re related to.
    I think Fen thought human life begins at conception – the fusion of two gametes clearly does at that point – but love does not begin then. Love begins when the mother decides she wants to carry the child to term.
    So if the mother decides at less than 20 (?) weeks she doesn’t want to commit that love, then the aborted foetus wasn’t human. The poor foetus, but it wasn’t meant to be.

  26. Andrew – that’s an interesting view, but what if (maternal) love starts later than 20 weeks, or never? I am not sure if the 20 (and following parenthetical “?”) weeks was just an example of a possible cut-off point, or do you see that as an inevitable limit? If not, does that allow for up-to-delivery (or even post-birth) procedures?

  27. Bloke not in Cymru

    As has been mentioned people talk about abortion as being a 10 minute no worries procedure and ignore the mental aspect, what I haven’t seen is that those suggesting term and adoption are also over simplifying this experience. Giving up a child for adoption can have a big impact both at the time and over the rest of the mothers life, that’s even allowing for what happens if the child isn’t adopted.

  28. Hi dcardno – the parenthesis was just to reflect ignorance of the limit when a foetus cannot viably be born. Love from dad, and the grandparents et al, potential adoptive parents too, this all becomes possible when the child is born, but mother’s love is the strongest.
    Perhaps sticking to ‘a woman’s right to choose’ is an easier rationalisation for a bloke.

  29. So Much For Subtlety

    Commentard from El Reg – “Incidentally, she is extremely pro-choice – “no-one tells a person how their body is to be used”.”

    Poor you. No matter. As it happens we tell people what they can and cannot do with their bodies all the time. We tell them what they can put into them for instance – like recreational drugs. We tell people how much they are allowed to charge for using them for physical labour for instance. Does your wife go the full 100 yards with this and is opposed to any restrictions on prostitution, minimum wage and the like?

    “Regarding people telling people what they should do”

    No one is telling women what they should do – except the doctors advising abortions. What some people are saying is what people should not do. They should not take an action that is going to end another human life.

    “How did those of you who hold this view become so arrogant?”

    We thought about it.

    “On a final point, I’ve been involved in these discussions professionally for some years, and I lean very much to the point of view that, at the earliest, birth is the point at which a foetus becomes a life with legal protection.”

    Being involved with this discussion professionally means what? You are paid to toe the line? Why do you lean to that point? What is the logic? And so you accept that an abortion is perfectly acceptable right up to and including when the woman has gone into labour? 8 months, three weeks, six days, twenty three hours and 59 minutes?

  30. So Much For Subtlety

    Andrew Carey – “Love from dad, and the grandparents et al, potential adoptive parents too, this all becomes possible when the child is born, but mother’s love is the strongest.”

    You would have to demonstrate to me that maternal love existed at all before claiming this is a sensible argument. Followed by that of the father, the grandparents etc etc. That looks like an unwarranted assumption to me. How do you know that parental love is not just a social myth?

    “Perhaps sticking to ‘a woman’s right to choose’ is an easier rationalisation for a bloke.”

    It is not a rationalisation. It is an act of cowardice. We all know what is right and wrong. We just don’t want to be bullied by insane feminists or thought a dork so we evade this question.

  31. So Much For Subtlety

    ukliberty – “After much tearful and heartbreaking discussion with her husband, they decided to follow the medical advice. Subsequently, the two remaining babies were born very prematurely and died within days. Quite hellish.”

    I am not sure hellish is the right word there. It sounds much worse. However I wonder about the relevance. Are you saying she listened to the Pope for too long and so could not have the children that she wanted to have? Or perhaps that more abortions earlier in life would have helped her? Or what?

    “Of course, you think she is a murderer so you probably don’t have a jot of sympathy.”

    Ahhh, now we see your motivation. Her story has nothing to do with this topic at all, but you need to maintain your hatred against The Enemy To The Right. You need to believe that Conservatives are all heartless [email protected] So you introduce a story only tagentally related to the topic just so that you can finish with that line. What looks like the cynical exploitation of some woman’s horror story so you can make some cheap point on a blog. Out-frickin’-standing.

    Now I have no idea what caused this woman’s suffering, but I doubt the abortion did a damn thing to help her in this story. Maybe if she had tried to keep all four and all four had died, she would have regretted not having the abortion. Then you would have had a real horror story to exploit wouldn’t you?

    But let’s think about the most likely causes of her problems. She is likely to have waited too long. The feminists attack women who marry and have children young. They tell them to put it off until they are 40. The media constantly pushes this message. Naturally a lot of women end up missing their chance. She may have had a previous infection such as chlamydia which makes later pregnancies difficult. She may have had previous abortions. It may be none of these things.

    From where I sit it looks like the most likely causes of her problems come down to one – not listening to the Pope. If women marry earlier, before having lots of random sex with people who may or may not be carrying STDs, if they do not live a morally disordered life, they are likely to end up living a much better and satisfying life. Abortion is a part of the larger problem – the problem that causes thousands of women like your friend to suffer these things.

    But hey, it is probably just all our fault for not voting for Corbyn, right? I doubt my opinion will break through those narrow iron walls of hatred you keep your mind in.

  32. So Much For Subtlety

    Frank O’Dwyer – “I pointed out that just because some or even millions of people choose to do something does not imply that it is safe or a good idea for everyone. The risks are there whether some people willingly accept them or not.”

    Then your point is a stupid one because no one here is suggesting that women should be forced to become pregnant if they do not want to. If it is not a good idea, don’t do it.

    “In any case, it is still true that pregnancy and childbirth are among the leading killers of women, especially teenagers, worldwide (including the third world). And that is just risk of death.”

    Which is irrelevant as abortion is not going to make them any safer. Countries that cannot provide safe child birth cannot provide safe abortions. Besides, there is no real demand for abortion outside the West. Third World women have the children they want to have by and large.

    “Even in the first world, morning sickness is so common that it is considered normal.”

    Because it is normal. What’s your point? You don’t want to take the risk, don’t become pregnant. A lot of young men ride powerful motorcycles. They often have accidents. If they are unhappy about this, the solution is not to buy a motorcycle. It would not be moral if they could prevent their own accidents by randomly killing a passer by.

    “These are all real costs and risks and if you don’t understand them you have no business glibly requiring, or even suggesting, that someone else accept them because of your morals.”

    Sure they are. But they remain irrelevant to the topic. You just prefer to talk about them because you know you have no actual argument that deals with the actual topic. Again, no one here is suggesting women should be forced to be pregnant against their will. If they want to risk gestational diabetes, that is entirely up to them.

  33. “no-one tells a person how their body is to be used”

    I think abortion is the only instance where this statement applies in the UK today. We are bombarded 24/7 by the State, fake charities and the media on how our bodies are ‘used’ by us.

  34. “Of course, you think she is a murderer so you probably don’t have a jot of sympathy.”

    ukliberty

    I would frankly have expected a little better; I am sadly sadly disappointed. If I had wanted to call her a murderer I would have called her a murderer. I didn’t, I wouldn’t, I have the utmost sympathy for someone facing such an agonising decision.

    So you just carry on playing with yourself.

  35. “Then she became pregnant with quadruplets and was told by doctors that the circumstances were such that there would be a high risk that none of the babies would survive, that she ought to consider terminating two to give the other two a better chance. After much tearful and heartbreaking discussion with her husband, they decided to follow the medical advice. Subsequently, the two remaining babies were born very prematurely and died within days. Quite hellish.”

    Heartrending and worthy of the deepest sympathy. Not, however, choice; true choice is unencumbered.

  36. “On a final point, I’ve been involved in these discussions professionally for some years, and I lean very much to the point of view that, at the earliest, birth is the point at which a foetus becomes a life with legal protection.”

    Oh really. So your ‘professional’ knowledge leads you to believe legal definitions define life itself do they? Then you and your fellow professionals have learnt nothing. Take a child 10 minutes before its birth and try to terminate the pregnancy, killing the child. Then contemplate what a load of bollocks your definition, acquired through deep professional discussions, truly is.

  37. Frank accuses.me of calling g pregnant wen sluts; I didn’t. ukliberty accuses me of calling a pregnant woman facing an agonising decision a murder; I didn’t. I do.say you cunts are quite typical of the pro-choice lobb, you can’t make you case without descending to these levels.

  38. @Ironman, you’re the one that needs to learn something.

    Birth is the point at which a foetus has legal protection. That is totally different to the definition of life. The legal aspect need something to define the point at which protection kicks in. Birth is a natural (sic) point at which to do this. Otherwise it becomes a subjective issue and law doesn’t like that.

    When it 10 minutes before birth? 10 mins before contractions start or 10 mins before crowning or 10 mins before the cord is cut. Anyway, the law doesn’t allow termination that late, that’s why there is so a large amount of time before birth when termination isn’t allowed.

    Law is bollocks.

  39. Andrew – Perhaps sticking to ‘a woman’s right to choose’ is an easier rationalisation for a bloke.

    SMFS made an excellent point there about why so many men duck out of this issue, but also, perhaps there’s a clue in the word “rationalisation”.

    When you find yourself having to rationalise something, you’re almost certainly in the wrong.

    Like how people rhetorically tapdance around the humanity of the unborn. But no parent has ever brandished pictures of their prenatal ultrasound scan and announced “look at our foetus!”

    Babies are tiny, helpless humans. Unborn babies are the most innocent and vulnerable of all. It’s our responsibility as supposedly civilised men to protect them. It’s not a women’s rights issue, it’s a human rights issue.

  40. So Much For Subtlety

    SadButMadLad – “Birth is the point at which a foetus has legal protection. That is totally different to the definition of life. The legal aspect need something to define the point at which protection kicks in. Birth is a natural (sic) point at which to do this. Otherwise it becomes a subjective issue and law doesn’t like that.”

    Conception is just as natural. Perhaps more so. The law deals fine with subjective issues like the number of weeks after conception. Traditionally British law recognised that a lot of bad things can happen to a foetus and so even if it did not deny it was a person, it did not extend the full protection of the law to the pre-born.

    “Anyway, the law doesn’t allow termination that late, that’s why there is so a large amount of time before birth when termination isn’t allowed.”

    You have just contradicted yourself. Apart from the fact that the law does allow termination that late. You said that birth was natural – and yet on paper the law protects an eight month old foetus. It doesn’t but it pretends to.

    “Law is bollocks.”

    But practice is vile.

  41. I’ve watched this argument go on so many times – it always boils down to the same thing once you remove all the straw men, specially difficult cases and the like.

    In the straightforward case (which applies to most abortions in a UK context) of an unplanned pregnancy that is proceeding normally and healthily, where the child was conceived in a consensual setting (notice how one of these conditions is always absent in any example given by the pro choice lobby) why should we kill the child for the convenience of it’s mother?

    These children are not being left strapped to their mothers for nine months because of the actions of some vengeful stalk which turns up at random. It’s not like getting an unfortunate disease.

    The mother and father of each sprog in these situations did something that they knew could lead to a pregnancy – if they weren’t happy with that idea, then they could have always refrained from bonking, or invested in a box of condoms. If we didn’t have abortion on demand, perhaps people would think a bit more, which would be no bad thing.

  42. *Thinks*

    Actually.. the real, and underlying problem is the fact that teenage girls *do* manage to get pregnant in this day and age.

    Personally, I feel that the first to blame are the damned parents.
    Not teaching girls that unprotected sex = pregnancy, and the ways to prevent it, especially the modern *3 year* implants, is criminal.

    Really.. we’re so lucky that the female fertility mechanism is so detached from the rest of the hormonal balance system that we *can* interfere with it, and not mess up the rest of the body, as opposed to males.
    And yet there’s hordes of people who fail to use it for , frankly, *insane* reasons.

    The issue is, that abortion as a last-ditch measure is mostly kept alive by *the very people who oppose it in the most vehemous way*.
    And that is truly sad beyond words.

  43. Bloke in Costa Rica

    Grikath: you’re begging the question. You’re assuming that some teenage slapper doesn’t “want” her baby. Sure, after it’s born and has become a burden, she might cool on the idea, but a large number of not-terribly-bright young women in the West get pregnant because they fancy the idea of having something to cuddle. The depths of fecklessness of the underclass have never been thoroughly plumbed. Theodore Dalrymple has written extensively on this.

  44. Abortion is always one that gets the blood boiling. There’s never any middle ground there – nobody argues ‘well, it sorta is a human – but I can see how a women’s rights come into it’ – no, it’s all either ‘it’s a human baby’ or ‘it’s a clump of worthless cells’.

    The truth is it’s various degrees of both (with a huge grey area) – one day a person will argue abortion is perfectly fine – the next day the same person will argue that attacking a pregnant woman is the most heinous crime ever “how dare someone attack an unborn child and a woman who is trying to carry it”, etc, etc, etc, etc.

  45. Bloke in Costa Rica

    BiM: I’m that rara avis (apparently) who very much dislikes abortion but thinks it should be legal, if not too frivolously obtainable.

  46. BiCR – I’m the same. I mean, my oldest son was born 3 months premature, my wife had quite bad health issues during the pregnancy and they offered us a termination up until about 2 weeks before the birth (for the sake of the mothers health).

    If we had of decided to end the pregnancy on August 5th then that was our legal right. If I had of stuck my fingers into the incubator on August 20th and strangled my child I would have probably been convicted of murder. Such are the moral vagaries.

    So, I’m uncomfortable with abortion – I don’t think it’s morally free – I don’t subscribe to the feminist notions that we are not allowed to even think that deeply about it (as in it should be unquestionably morally free). But I believe that given the more awful scenarios of backstreet abortions or half-wit parents having children they can’t raise, then it’s often (on balance) the lesser evil.

  47. So Much For Subtlety

    Grikath – “Actually.. the real, and underlying problem is the fact that teenage girls *do* manage to get pregnant in this day and age.”

    Indeed they do. The question is why. The likely reason is that the middle classes are no longer willing to preach what they practise. They are not willing to say, publicly, that it is not a good idea for people to sleep together very young and have children before they get married – things they teach their own children not to do but which they would not be caught dead telling the feckless workshy.

    “Not teaching girls that unprotected sex = pregnancy, and the ways to prevent it, especially the modern *3 year* implants, is criminal.”

    There is not a single person in these Bless’d Isles who is unaware of this. Where have you been living? If you go to the furthest Outer Hebrides, where people have not even learned to speak English yet, and find the most reclusive recluse you could possibly discover, and ask his frickin’ sheepdog, the dog knows this.

    This is a non-starter as a cause. Everyone knows.

    “The issue is, that abortion as a last-ditch measure is mostly kept alive by *the very people who oppose it in the most vehemous way*.”

    No it isn’t. The Muslim community takes single parenthood seriously. And so they do not have any. The Irish Catholic community used to. And so they had little. The Indians and Chinese still do not. Abortion is caused by people who tell other people that we should be living in a pornutopia – where all sex is great and everyone should be doing it, in all possible ways, starting at the earliest age. The Left in other words.

    Bloke in Malta – “There’s never any middle ground there – nobody argues ‘well, it sorta is a human – but I can see how a women’s rights come into it’ – no, it’s all either ‘it’s a human baby’ or ‘it’s a clump of worthless cells’.”

    I don’t see it is a useful argument, but the law has always accepted that a foetus is not quite a person but still it is something. That is why infanticide, when it was a crime, was not quite the same as murder. But by all means, let’s assume it is something in between. And then opt for the precautionary principle – perhaps it is a clump of cells, perhaps it is a human being. Should we kill what might well be a human being just because we want to look good in a bikini this holiday? Is it worth killing what might be a human being for a promotion?

    Suppose that I gave you a button and told you it was connected to an electric chair in China. If you pressed it, you would get a free hot dinner. But you would also kill a person in the chair in China. Now you don’t *know* it is connected to a chair in China. It might not be. Do you press the button?

  48. So Much For Subtlety

    Bloke in Malta – “But I believe that given the more awful scenarios of backstreet abortions or half-wit parents having children they can’t raise, then it’s often (on balance) the lesser evil.”

    Why is the back street abortion argument never an argument for regulating back street rape? We could reduce the murder rate by about 80%. By letting husbands kill their wives for any reason at all. I don’t think that is a good idea.

    Half-wit parents have children because even dimmer “human rights” advocates insist that it is their right to have sex, marry, have children and raise them. If they were cared for properly in an institution they would not be having children. But of course the same people who want abortion to be legal want half wits to have fulfilling married lives.

  49. -SMFS

    Actually.. I’ve a feeling quite a lot of the drama exists because parents tend to go Ape when daughter-dear wants to bring up the concept of contraception.
    It’s the Little-Girl-Isn’t-So-Little-Anymore moment each parent is dreading, and even amongst the most liberal and otherwise-intelligent specimens of our species it gives lovely little kneejerks. Especially when Daddy realises his Little Girl is close to deciding which snot-nosed punk is going to Touch her..

    Combine that with the Myth of the Sinfulness and Badness of sexuality, and you’ve got a powder keg that makes the people who *should* be approachable about the matter the least likely candidates a teenager would and could talk to.
    Especially since getting contraception all too often involves getting the permission of the Parents, due to Bureaucracy.

    Just north of the river where I live is the southern part of the dutch Bible Belt.
    Guess where the “Weekend Sluts at the Disco” generally live, or where the incidence of teenage pregnancies, “curetages” , or venereal diseases is the highest?
    But, of course, that all “doesn’t happen” , because Sin… And stuff..

    If it were purely anecdotal, you could shrug it off. Unfortunately the whole mess is validated by various official institutions, who are, of course Wrong… *shrug*

  50. Ironman, I thought you had indicated in earlier threads that abortion is murder. If that is not your view then I unreservedly apologise.

    SFMS, you don’t know this woman and you’re wide of the mark – try not to get so carried away with your know-it-all tendency, yeah? You don’t even seem to understand that addressing a specific person is not the same as addressing a set of people (I the pseudonym of the addressee at the top, yeah?). And sure, she could have decided against medical advice and continued with the four, high risk pregnancies. A horrible position to be in, I am sure you wou-, no, you wouldn’t agree, non-sociopaths would, though..

  51. You would have to demonstrate to me that maternal love existed at all before claiming this is a sensible argument… How do you know that parental love is not just a social myth?

    Strange, I’d have thought Tim would be the last blogger to use robot-generated comments to drum up traffic.

  52. FOD

    Apologies for my absence.

    I note that you do not respond to my point about your agument, but instead put out yet more smoke, deploy what is probably the least apt analogy I’ve ever seen deployed by anyone on any subject, and end by misrepresenting what I said.

    Bravo.

    And thanks: it’s been a lesson to me, not to waste my short time on this earth engaging with those who cannot or will not argue honestly.

  53. Commentard

    I am intrigued by your use of the phrase “at the earliest.” How late does your range of possibilities run?

  54. SMFS: Bloke in Malta – “But I believe that given the more awful scenarios of backstreet abortions or half-wit parents having children they can’t raise, then it’s often (on balance) the lesser evil.”

    Why is the back street abortion argument never an argument for regulating back street rape? We could reduce the murder rate by about 80%. By letting husbands kill their wives for any reason at all. I don’t think that is a good idea.

    You don’t seem to understand why back street abortions are bad. There was a very good chance that the mother would lost a lot more than just their child. “Unsafe abortion is believed to result in approximately 69,000 deaths and millions of injuries annually.” (from wonkypedia, but it’s sourced from a reasonable looking study). Abortion was legalised to save lives.

    You can definitely argue that they’ve gone too far with it, but try not to lose sight of the fact that there is a good reason for some legal abortion to exist (i.e. that mother and child will die otherwise).

  55. BiM

    I agree with you: I’m certainly not an abolitionist.

    But I do feel that the true nature* of what is being done should be acknowledged. Because the truth will out.

    Someone very close to me had an abortion in her teens: altho’ she still feels that it was the correct choice at the time, I know that she feels real grief even now, decades later.

    * Yes, yes, I know, begging the question blah blah.

  56. SMFS,

    “Then your point is a stupid one because no one here is suggesting that women should be forced to become pregnant if they do not want to.”

    Plenty suggest that she should be forced to remain pregnant.

    Yes there is a risk of pregnancy from sex, indeed even abstinence from consensual sex is no guarantee. But after all, pregnancy can be ended.

    “Which is irrelevant as abortion is not going to make them any safer”

    An early term abortion is about one or two orders of magnitude safer than carrying to term. That’s just risk of death, and that’s in the first world. And obviously it completely avoids all the other risks (and costs) of continued pregnancy for a woman who doesn’t want to take them on.

    “A lot of young men ride powerful motorcycles. They often have accidents.”

    That doesn’t mean they consented to any and all consequences which can still be avoided. They do not have to bleed to death by the side of the road because somebody else thinks that stitches injure some misunderstood life form.

    Similarly somebody who becomes pregnant doesn’t have to stay pregnant. Pregnancy can be ended.

    “I don’t see it is a useful argument, but the law has always accepted that a foetus is not quite a person but still it is something.”

    Yes, but the issue is of what it is, is in almost all cases moot because of where it is.

    Even if the foetus was a 30 year old plumber and an excellent raconteur with 3 children of its own and a mortgage, it would still have to go its separate way if it was inside the body of a woman who didn’t want it there, wouldn’t it? (And no that does not imply any right to kill, and abortion *isn’t* a right to kill, it’s just a right to end pregnancy. There is no need to kill a viable fetus in order to end a pregnancy, and the law reflects that).

  57. SMFS “Why is the back street abortion argument never an argument for regulating back street rape? We could reduce the murder rate by about 80%. By letting husbands kill their wives for any reason at all. I don’t think that is a good idea.”

    Well you clearly feel that an unborn baby should have the legal protection of a full grown adult. As I said it’s a big grey area – I certainly don’t feel that a morning after pill is murder, but I do feel that killing a 30 week-in fetus should be considered a murder. There is some arbitrary point in-between where we do bestow ‘human’ status to that baby – I’d argue 24 weeks is too high, but then this is subjective.

    But yes, from a utilitarian point of view the likes of back street abortions cause a lot of human misery – ending a pregnancy early may lessen human misery. Reducing the sum total of human misery sounds like the pragmatic moral goal (and don’t start me off on whether ‘potential’ human happiness of the unborn child should be counted – considering there is a huge amount of potential human happiness wasted every time I have a wank.)

    I feel it’s important also to deal with the world how it is, and not how you think it should be – it would be great if everyone was responsible and dutifully took up parenthood, but there are quite a few flawed people and we need to work around those flaws.

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