My dreams become more bizarre as time goes on, I swear. Without going into hideously long and boring details the latest one involved: me, Hitler and JFK at a table mocking JFK’s accent- then all the sudden a fleet of bombers nuked our city and we ate Hitler alive.
Oh, and I escaped on a helicopter flown by a guy who owns a stationary store. So that was fun.
Moving on to more mundane matters, I went to Arvest’s home branch yesterday (Arvest is a local bank for those who don’t know) because they called me in for an aptitude test for a clerical position. I figured it would be something like a preliminary interview where they try and get a feel for what kind of person you are, and if you would mesh well with the company and other corporate jack off, but it turns out I was wrong. They sit you down at a computer, and give you a multiple choice test. That honestly doesn’t bother me, they’re a little tedious but nothing I haven’t done before online. I applied to Arvest online, and they make me drive to their home branch to administer a test that uploads its results to their server via the internet. Wouldn’t it just make it easier and faster for everyone involved if they made that test part of the online application process? I know I’m not a business whiz or anything, but making your employees take the time to set us all up for this test when you could just have them do it online seems like a bit of a waste. But what do I know?
Jumping tangents now, abort73.com is perhaps one of the most asinine anti-abortion websites I have ever seen. (No, I’m not calling them pro-life, for a long boring list of reasons first of which is that by calling your self ‘pro-life’ you automatically put your opponents in the position of ‘pro-death’ or ‘anti-life.’ Is that like the Anti-Monitor?) Aside from confusing the issue of what pro-choice (I don’t like that term much either, to be honest) advocates are going for, they present some really absurd logic. Let me show you:
By all appearances, abortion-advocates are attempting to distance themselves from the actual act of abortion, by arguing that they don’t support abortion, they only support a women’s legal right to choose abortion. But does that change anything? Is there a moral distinction between supporting abortion and supporting the right to abortion?
To answer the question(s) asked in that paragraph, in short, yes and yes.
First of all, a caveat, as a man I will never fully understand what it is like to experience an abortion; nor to be confronted with the choice of it. I will have partial understanding, but since I won’t have full understanding the lion’s share of responsibility should always be on the woman in instances of potential abortion, for good or ill.
In the long, I will say that no there is not a moral distinction between abortion and the right to abortion because the right to choice isn’t a ‘moral’ issue. In the paragraphs preceding the one I posted abort73 argues that there is a difference between bad choices and criminal choices and leaves no room for the two to overlap. In their minds a bad choice can’t be a criminal choice, and a criminal choice can’t be a bad choice. The problem with this logic is, of course, that criminal choices and bad choices are not the same types of choice, they are completely different from each other. A choice of bad (or good) is a choice which falls on a moral scale, or in the realm of moral choices. A criminal (or legal) choice is a choice which falls under the review of government. Now, there is nothing that about these two categories of choice that denies them the chance to overlap: a good criminal choice would be shooting armed men who have attacked you or your family. It saves your life, and the lives of the ones you love. But it is still, technically, a crime to do so. A bad legal choice might be to decide that you want to get so drunk that you end up dying from alcohol poisoning, it is perfectly legal to consume so much alcohol that you die from it. But few of us would say that is a ‘good’ choice.
So now that we know that criminality and legality are not the determinate of moral right or wrongness, a distinction I hope all of you already knew, let’s look a little further at to why abort73’s logic just doesn’t make any sense in a legal or moral way.
For the same reason that we don’t swoop in and stop suicides, at least most of the time, we don’t stop women from getting abortions: it is a choice that affects the woman’s body, and no one else’s. It may emotionally effect other people, but if we legalized or banned decisions that may emotionally effect people one way or the other we would pretty much have to legislate everything. Now abort73 would say that it affects another person’s ‘body’ as well, the body of the unborn child! Until such a point that science can prove that the ‘baby’ inside a woman is sentient, and could feel pain, I will never support the argument that life starts at conception. From a medical perspective, for the first few months of conception a baby bares a striking resemblance to a tumor. There is certainly a point when the baby is sentient, and if the pregnancy makes it to that point the woman probably wants to keep her baby. Until science can make a convincing argument that a baby is alive and sentient inside the womb, at all stages, there is no legal onus to ban abortion.
Now, what about the moral issues behind abortion? If you subscribe to the ‘life begins at conception’ argument, you are killing a human being and that is morally wrong. First of all, a little aside on my part, 50 percent of all conceived eggs are spontaneously aborted by the mother. Or so. If that is the case, then probably a vast majority of sexually active straight women (and probably all mothers) have at some point “killed” a child. Just so you know. Anyway, the first problem with the ‘life beings at conception’ clap trap is this: what about the mother? If the pregnancy is an immediate threat to the mother’s health whose ‘life’ gets priority? The unborn child who has, at this point, nothing to define it as a human? Or the mother, who is probably decently young, has a family, friends, lover(s)?, a husband, maybe a wife; people who care about her. And what happens to the baby after her mother dies and it lives? It goes to a foster family, or lives in an orphanage, or grows up with people who resent it (maybe the father, who knows?) Is that kind of life better than simply never being? And what about the moral issue of how the woman is treated? If you say that a pregnancy should go through even if it risks the mother (more so than normal anyway) then aren’t you saying that a woman is only a good as her uterus? That seems a little immoral to me.
And what about unwanted pregnancies? Despite how abort73 and other anti-abortion outfits make it seem, it isn’t as easy as saying “Well I don’t want this baby, give it to some random people.” from either an emotional or legal stand point. You don’t just snap your fingers and WOOSH the baby has a new home. Nope. So who knows how long this child will be wrapped up in a home that doesn’t want it, or stuck in the hands of a state run orphanage? It could be years. And if the child isn’t adopted, the mother (and father, though that is a whole different story) have the responsibility of raising the child even if they didn’t want it. So now we have at least two people whose lives have taken on a sudden, and unwanted, financial burden, and are loaded with the emotional and social responsibility of raising a child. We’ve seen, time and time again, that child raised in houses like these, on average, tend to have bad lives or become bad people. Thanks abort73! You’ve either ruined a child’s life, a family’s life, or the lives of others because you don’t want abortions to happen!
And here’s my final question: what about teenagers (who having no proper sex education) get pregnant? Some teenager mothers do find a way out, but these are normally in families who have the time, money, and people to invest in raising the child. Most teenager mothers don’t have these things. If these mothers can’t get abortions their chances of graduating from high school, much less college, drop to amazingly low numbers meaning that they will probably become dependent upon someone else solely, dependent on the state, or work terrible hours for terrible wages, neglecting their child simply so they can both survive. By trying to ban abortion you would be literally ruining the lives of thousands of women, and their lovers and families, simply because they had the audacity to have sex. (And no, abstinence doesn’t work. The numbers in America have shown sharp spikes in teen pregnancy and STD spread in the areas where abstinence is taught. Teens are going to fuck, and you can’t stop it.)