Yes, yes, I know, it’s me that’s out of step here

Women always take the brunt’: India sees surge in unsafe abortion

There’s someone – OK, if you prefer, something – else which takes rather more of the brunt.

40 thoughts on “Yes, yes, I know, it’s me that’s out of step here”

  1. So Much For Subtlety

    In the case of abortion I think it is fair to say that random chance means that women, or potential women given they do not get to grow up, are at least half the victims. Given India’s gender preferences it is reasonable to assume they are more than half.

    It is hard to believe that feminists would be celebrating gendercide but there you go. Kanye was right – abortion is about getting rid of Black children. In India brown girls.

  2. I understand a religious objection to abortion; even ill defined sense of a soul, perhaps the feeling that the material explanation of the universe is somehow inadequate, and that an unborn child cannot be judged purely by its physical attributes or capabilities.
    I get that, I feel that way myself.
    It puzzles me is when aggressive atheists ( the sort of people who refer wittily to a sky fairy) object to women flushing away what for them is presumably no more than clump of cells. Its almost as if they just enjoy misery and if it can be inflicted on women all the better

  3. I wonder why a baby born is worthy of less consideration than unborn? As long as it is not aborted, it is all right for it to be abused because of resentment, suffer continual hunger and diseases untreated because of the poverty into which it is born, and if it is really lucky and survives long enough, it can enjoy being sold into indentured servitude to settle family debt and/or provide some income for its parents.

    And why is the mother worthy of less consideration, she who will suffer pain, discomfort, physical and emotional derangement? What about the siblings who get less to eat when there is another mouth to feed.

    Anti-abortionist consider the interests of only one Human, themselves.

    And millions of abortions take place daily without Human intervention. I blame God.

  4. You’re arse backwards as usual, newms. A belief in a supreme being derives from one’s innate sense of right and wrong, not the other way around.

  5. Not so much. Entirely possible to have an entirely non-religious objection. Say, one based purely on civil liberties. A human has the right to be free of capricious execution say…..

  6. Once again cis-women are bring prioritised while the likes of Carrie stand outside abortion clinics waiting for the appointment which never comes.

  7. Tim,
    Disagree. The objection is visceral, civil liberties is post justification.

    No normal person could calmly watch an unrelated toddler beaten to death. Why? What is it to you? Soldiers in war zones risk their lives to pull brown kids out of the way. Why? If you’re religiously inclined you favour a supernatural explanation, if not then huanitarianism. But the feeling comes first, then the rationalization.

  8. @rlj

    Related to that… Which animals do we think of as “cute” and feel a need to look after? Big-eyed ones that remind us of babies, quite often. Was an interesting piece on that a few years back: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-28036667

    Not sure how inherent the whole thing is bearing in mind all the cultures that practised infanticide apparently without any great regret, but growing up in Western culture we are generally horrified by the idea. A lot of that feeds back to the abortion debate, it’s why pro-life groups know the power of a cute “baby-like” foetus photo, and why pro-choice groups will try to remove that kind of image from the debate and try to express the developmental state in purely biological terms.

  9. A human has the right to be free of capricious execution say…..

    No-one thinks people should be capriciously executed Mr. Worstall, people disagree is about who, what and, ‘when’ is a person.

    *wags finger censoriously *

  10. Newmania, atheism is the absence of belief in God, or gods (or indeed sky fairies), which, frankly, is the only logical stance. It does not mean that they are therefore devoid of any concept of morality. And the idea that any such morality could come from such a nasty god as the christian god is hilarious!

  11. So Much For Subtlety

    John B July 13, 2020 at 9:00 am – “I wonder why a baby born is worthy of less consideration than unborn?”

    Immediately starting with a logical fallacy is not a good sign. No one says they are. But you are not comparing like with like. You are comparing unhappiness – as you see it – with death. The two are really not comparable.

    “As long as it is not aborted, it is all right for it to be abused because of resentment, suffer continual hunger and diseases untreated because of the poverty into which it is born, and if it is really lucky and survives long enough, it can enjoy being sold into indentured servitude to settle family debt and/or provide some income for its parents.”

    Strawmanning at its finest. Emotionally manipulative strawman at that. When your argument is this poor it is time to rethink.

    “And why is the mother worthy of less consideration, she who will suffer pain, discomfort, physical and emotional derangement? What about the siblings who get less to eat when there is another mouth to feed.”

    Let us consider the mother by all means. A fraction of all abortions can be said to have any of these sort of welfare implications. Most are for lifestyle choices.

    But the problem here is to fundamentally misunderstand what causes misery. It is not giving birth. It is disordered private lives. Households that are disordered, that make bad choices, are not made good by abortion. We can see this in Black America. Which have very high rates of child abuse, poverty, child neglect, STDs, single mothers – *and* abortion. Which is what you would expect – when you have a lot of people making bad decisions, encouraging them to be even more thoughtless and feckless is only going to make their situation worse.

    If your claim was anything more than a convenient pose you would oppose abortion.

    “Anti-abortionist consider the interests of only one Human, themselves.”

    A remarkably graceless bit of mind reading.

    “And millions of abortions take place daily without Human intervention. I blame God.”

    So they do. Thousands of people die on the roads every year. I suppose you think I can run any9ione I like down?

  12. So Much For Subtlety

    Nautical Nick July 13, 2020 at 11:35 am – “It does not mean that they are therefore devoid of any concept of morality.”

    Devoid of the concept? No. Devoid of any logical basis on which to construct any sort of morality? Yes. As we see with the long slow withdraw of religion in the 19th century being followed by two mass genocides in Europe in the 20th.

    Like most people atheists realise they need something and often there is a memory of Sunday School. But not much.

    “And the idea that any such morality could come from such a nasty god as the christian god is hilarious!”

    I encvourage you to name one nasty thing the Christian God does in the NT. You mean the Jewish God – and you should say so.

  13. I do find the anti-abortion moral argument about potential human beings on shaky ground. The logical end point of that has to be any sexual act not intended to produce a pregnancy is immoral. Even further, refraining from sex altogether is immoral. Which rather fucks the Catholic church up the arse. On the other hand, if you’re in favour of abortion on moral grounds, why not infanticide? A baby in a cot’s no more a human than one half formed in the womb. Not in the sense of being able to make rational decisions about its relationship with other humans. Not just its own needs. Which pretty well defines humanity. It’s just another young animal.
    But that’s the problem with moral arguments. Morals being nothing more than imposed personal preferences.

  14. “No normal person could calmly watch an unrelated toddler beaten to death.”

    Therefore, God.

    Wut?

  15. Looking at this from the outside – since I’ve never the slghtest interest in producing offspring – you have two conflicting pressures. One is the selfish biological imperative to reproduce. And the other’s the equally selfish desire not to be lumbered with the consequences of doing to. And a lot gets played out on that playing field. The abortion debate being part of it.

  16. So Much For Subtlety

    bloke in spain July 13, 2020 at 12:36 pm – “I do find the anti-abortion moral argument about potential human beings on shaky ground. The logical end point of that has to be any sexual act not intended to produce a pregnancy is immoral.”

    That is the Catholic position but is it the logical outcome or it is two separate arguments close to each other in their object? It does not follow for me that refusing to kill the unborn requires the greater creation of the unborn. The humanness of a fellow human being is not affected in anyway by me, say, watching some squirrel on squirrel action and jerking off.

    “Even further, refraining from sex altogether is immoral.”

    Again refraining from one action is not remotely equivalent to performing another. I may think you should be allowed to smoke in the street but that does not mean I have to club every lamb I see to death

    “Which rather fucks the Catholic church up the arse. On the other hand, if you’re in favour of abortion on moral grounds, why not infanticide?”

    The Netherlands has rapidly moved to drugging old women, holding them down and then killing them over their loud objections.

    “But that’s the problem with moral arguments. Morals being nothing more than imposed personal preferences.”

    If you wish to define them that way. Which is question begging

    Gamecock July 13, 2020 at 12:37 pm – “Therefore, God. Wut?”

    Presumably it could be used either way – therefore no God. We just have a natural instinct to justice. I would think the alternative to God is more common.

    It is nonsense because no one might admit it but we watch children suffer all the time. And we don’t care.

    Gamecock July 13, 2020 at 12:38 pm – “Was it okay to murder before Moses read the 10|13 Commandments?”

    Sure – outside the tribe. That is pretty much all pre-Christian literature. In the south-west they have found fossils that show some harmless Indians were killed by some other less harmless Indians. The latter ate the former, slept in their beds, got up in the morning, took a shit in their hearth and left. We know because human DNA is preserved in the coprolite.

    I am going to go out on a limb here and say no one thought it wrong

  17. So Much For Subtlety

    There is a philosophical argument that we have a moral obligation to increase human happiness. The best way to do that is have as many children as we can afford.

    An argument from the morally dense but apparently brilliant Derek Parfait. It is called the Repugnant Conclusion largely because Mr Parfait’s colleagues were not Catholics.

    “For any possible population of at least ten billion people, all with a very high quality of life, there must be some much larger imaginable population whose existence, if other things are equal, would be better even though its members have lives that are barely worth living”

  18. “And the other’s the equally selfish desire not to be lumbered with the consequences of doing to.”

    Until you have kids. Then you take care of them. It never occurs to you that you are lumbered.

  19. @SMFS
    Other things cease to be equal as soon as you increase the population. I assume that Mr Parfait was not a mathematician or logician.

  20. SMFS

    The Repugnant Conclusion was Parfit’s term to describe his reductio ad absurdum of a version of utilitarianism he called “total utilitarianism”.

  21. Bloke in Spain,

    “But that’s the problem with moral arguments. Morals being nothing more than imposed personal preferences.”

    To some extent, but there’s also making an argument and swaying people towards them. Personally, I see no reason for abortion to be legal beyond 12 weeks. It’s 12 weeks in many countries in Europe and there aren’t stories of women at 13 weeks seeking backstreet abortions, therefore 12 weeks is the top limit.

    Honestly, I don’t know why we still have so many abortions. The pill is free. Condoms are in every shop. Break the rubber johnny and there’s the morning-after pill. “I forgot my pill” well, after you’ve shagged the bloke, go and get plan B after breakfast.

    I suspect the real problem is that we try and interfere in evolution too much and keep too many idiots living on welfare who don’t care what their daughters get up to, because f**k it, there’s welfare. 150 years ago, if you shagged around as a woman it meant workhouse or prostitution. Big incentives for your father to keep a shotgun handy when the boys come calling on you, try and steer you into marrying well.

  22. Newmie: “It puzzles me is when aggressive atheists ( the sort of people who refer wittily to a sky fairy) object to women flushing away what for them is presumably no more than clump of cells. Its almost as if they just enjoy misery and if it can be inflicted on women all the better.”

    No, Painter of Face and AssBackwards Unreason….
    For one.. Atheïsm is like satanism.. It needs a divine being ( or at least the widely accepted conviction of its existence) to exist to rant against. It’s a religion in and of itself from a logical point of view.
    Agnosticism is in that respect a much more viable and logical stance, given that you can’t prove things either way when one side claims Dogma as an argument…

    And you’ll find that quite a lot of the non-godbotherers are against abortion as birth control as well.
    It’s a primitive and risky way to get rid of what can nowadays easily be prevented anyway, if people can get their mind out of the stone age for a bit.
    If you want actual “liberation” of women and give them a fair run at most of the same things us blokes can do in their lives, you prevent the damoclean sword they face in their lives and make sure pregnancy becomes a matter of reversible choice for the vast majority of them.

    It’s not about the clump of cells… It’s about how nowadays that clump should not have existed anyway, other than by choice of the female in question. At least in “civilised” parts of the world. There’s no helping the god-botherers and HolyBook thumpers.

  23. “We know because human DNA is preserved in the coprolite.”

    Pendant warning: this is ridiculous.

  24. “Personally, I see no reason for abortion to be legal beyond 12 weeks.”

    Personally, I have no problem with preventing a zygote from embedding in the uterus.

    Personally, I have a problem with aborting an 8 month fetus.

    Abortion is a singular case to me, where government must per force be arbitrary. 12 weeks cannot be differentiated from 13 weeks. Or 11 weeks. But a line must be drawn somewhere, even though it will be ARBITRARY.

    Liberty: Freedom from arbitrary or despotic government.

    Gentlemen, we have an exception.

  25. So Much For Subtlety

    john77 July 13, 2020 at 5:00 pm – “Other things cease to be equal as soon as you increase the population. I assume that Mr Parfait was not a mathematician or logician.”

    Do they? There may be some other side effects but the question remains – if we want to maximised human happiness do we not need to maximise human numbers? It is call repugnant because people can’t find a good counter argument.

    Theophrastus July 13, 2020 at 5:08 pm – “The Repugnant Conclusion was Parfit’s term to describe his reductio ad absurdum of a version of utilitarianism he called “total utilitarianism”.”

    I know. And …?

    Bloke on M4 July 13, 2020 at 6:14 pm – “Honestly, I don’t know why we still have so many abortions. The pill is free. Condoms are in every shop. Break the rubber johnny and there’s the morning-after pill. “I forgot my pill” well, after you’ve shagged the bloke, go and get plan B after breakfast.”

    By 1914 Britain was rapidly dropping towards zero population growth. What is remarkable about that is that divorce, abortion, and contraception were all pretty much illegal. But people were responsible. They took steps to make sure they had the children they wanted and, by and large, no more.

    The Sixties did not like that because they wanted everyone sleeping with everyone else. The Authorities have actively encouraged feckless behaviour around sex. The consequences are obvious.

    Abortion does not solve the problem of fecklessness. A disordered life is bad for children even if abortion is legal. We need to stop encouraging disorder.

  26. So Much For Subtlety

    Gamecock July 13, 2020 at 9:30 pm – “Abortion is a singular case to me, where government must per force be arbitrary. 12 weeks cannot be differentiated from 13 weeks. Or 11 weeks. But a line must be drawn somewhere, even though it will be ARBITRARY.”

    Neither Day 1 or Ninth Month is arbitrary. So it is not necessary.

    And of course it is one or the other. Otherwise a mother will turn up having put on 15 kgs in the previous 36 months and the doctor will sign a form saying it is 12 days old.

  27. You lost me, SMFS. To ME, Day 1 is fine, Ninth Month is not. Drawing a precise legal line is perforce arbitrary. Only if it is not allowed at all can it not be arbitrary.

  28. BoM4
    “Honestly, I don’t know why we still have so many abortions.”

    Over the years I’ve become increasingly convinced that the biggest determinant in most people’s decision making are contained in the words “It can’t happen to me” Once you accept that, you start to understand why people do what they do.
    Why do people think like this? Answer to that’s probably in why people have religion, morality and a lot of other stuff. They’re trying to construct a world that has some sort of narrative causality. That what happens over here has effect on what happens over there, although there’s not the slightest causal link between the two

  29. So Much For Subtlety

    Gamecock July 14, 2020 at 10:06 am – “You lost me, SMFS. To ME, Day 1 is fine, Ninth Month is not. Drawing a precise legal line is perforce arbitrary. Only if it is not allowed at all can it not be arbitrary.”

    Yes, your solution has to be arbitrary. But there are to start lines that are not – it is human from the moment of conception is the most famous one. Logical, clear cut and not arbitrary. Human from the moment of birth. Also clear cut and not arbitrary.

    bloke in spain July 14, 2020 at 10:25 am – “Why do people think like this? Answer to that’s probably in why people have religion, morality and a lot of other stuff.”

    And yet religous people have fewer abortions.

  30. Yes, SMFS, but religious people have their own particular fuck ups. I’m surrounded by people have been brought up “religious”. That there is a god interferes in their lives is one of the key assumptions they build their world on. Some of the decisions they make astound me. They ignore cause and effect.

  31. SMFS,

    Any basis of morality is the result of us humans being human. If we were praying mantises, our morality might permit biting off the head of ones husband. But we are human, so we don’t.

    The idea that religion is a logical basis for anything is hilarious! Religion changes to suit the changing concept of morality. We no longer think that religion justifies burning people at the stake, do we? Nor were the Crusades driven by a bunch of atheists. The genocides of last century were as much the result of the increased ability to carry them out, not to a decrease in religion. And yet, people are so driven by religion that they are prepared to die, flying aircraft into skyscrapers….

    Like most people, atheists think about doing the right thing, most of the time. But we don’t rely on crazy religions to guide us, not, most emphatically, do we need “something” to justify our choices.

    As for the New Testament nastiness, I am spoilt for choice!

    How about this, from the mouth of Jesus (allegedly!)

    13:41 The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;
    13:42 And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

    And of course, Jesus fully endorsed the Old Testament too:

    5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

    I’m an equal opportunities atheist. I don’t believe in any of them.

  32. And religious people have fewer abortions? Quelle surpris! They have a religion forbids it. But doesn’t seem bothered by all the girls have children they can’t afford or care for.

  33. ‘But doesn’t seem bothered by all the girls have children they can’t afford or care for.’

    Logical. The more children, the more religious types to carry on the religion, the more the religion flourishes.

    As is frequently pointed out, if some religion made it immoral to have children, it’d die out in a couple of generations. The reason for a decision doesn’t really matter, only the results.

    Evolution in action.

  34. “Any basis of morality is the result of us humans being human.”

    Civilization can be reduced to two principals.

    “You won’t mess with me and my stuff, and I won’t mess with yours.”

    “You will do what you agreed to do, and I’ll do what I agreed to do.”

    No religion there. Religion, as Hitchens said, would just poison it.

  35. Oh you can go further than that Boganboy. “The more children, the more religious types to carry on the religion, ” And the poorer they keep them the more dependent they are on religion. It’s hard to find a religion doesn’t preach virtuous poverty.

  36. Boganboy: the Shakers didn’t really approve of procreation. They died out.

    (Apart from their kitchens… 😉 )

  37. Gamecock’s First Corollary of O’Sullivan’s Law:

    “The objective of all corporations, even charities, even unions, will eventually be to make money.”

    The more children, the more money the church makes. Note that Catholics and Mormons push large families.

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