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Last night was one of those nights. Getting into a touchy subject. Abortion. I was asked if I would ever have an abortion. I don't know if others think the way I think but here was my response:

No I wouldn't just have an abortion. If I was told I was certainly going to die then yes I would. Why? Because I couldn't leave my three soon to be 4 children without a mother. Call it what you will.

My thoughts on abortion:

You go out, have sex, get pregnant because you are too stupid to use protection, then NO you are not entitled to get one. Tough shit, suck it up and grow up. I don't think an innocent child should die because you wanted to get your rocks off without being an adult and protecting yourself.

Now the other side the fence. I don't think a woman that was raped should have to carry that child. If a man rapes a woman and she gets pregnant I think she should have that choice. So many women get raped and they resent that child. Why should she sacrifice her body for this man that took what he wanted? If a woman was told this baby will kill you I think she should have that choice especially if she has other children.

During a protest outside an abortion clinic in New Orleans in 2004 that I just so happen to walk by. I saw these men and women holding signs calling these women baby killers. Now I got on the defensive because these people didn't know their story on WHY they were getting an abortion.

I calmly walked up to the men and asked them, "What gives you any right to hold a sign when you aren't the one sacrificing your body, time, health, energy?" What gives a man any right to say what a woman should and should not do to their bodies. The woman gives her whole body to this child. What does the man do, gets an orgasm. They don't go though the pain, morning sickness, labor, child birth.

Anyways, they ended up leaving and the women followed them. If it wasn't for a woman nobody would be here. Just food for thought there. So in conclusion. What are your thoughts about abortion?

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If a woman gets pregnant because she or he fails to protect there is always adoption.

Have you any idea how much 9 months can disrupt your plans for the future? There are some opportunities that will not wait for you to have a child and put it up for adoption. Some women are career oriented, and not family oriented.

We have reached a point in our evolution where reproduction by every last member of the species is not required for the survival of the species. At 7 billion people, it's probably time to cross that "go forth and multiply" thing off the to do list. Maybe we can get on to that "Love thy neighbor" thing now.

We shouldn't judge. It's hard to not judge. My opinions aren't judging people.

You are judging, Savannah. This is the most damning and incorrect judgment you are making:

"I don't think an innocent child should die because you wanted to get your rocks off without being an adult and protecting yourself. [...] I saw these men and women holding signs calling these women baby killers."

The same science that sends robots to Mars, transplants living organs, peers back to the origins of the universe, and builds supercomputers, also tells us there is no child. Not yet. Not in the case of virtually every abortion performed in this country.

Consciousness makes you human. Not your beating heart. Not the shape of your hands. Not the functions of your body. Your death as a human being occurs with the cessation of your higher brain functions and the irreversible end of your consciousness: 'brain death'. Conversely, your life as a human being begins with the commencement of your brain functions and the starting of your consciousness: 'brain life'.

Science has established that the structures of the brain that are required for "fetal awareness of noxious stimuli" do not begin forming until 23 to 30 weeks. This medical science is the basis for state, federal and international law which typically sets abortion limits at 20 weeks.

It is living human tissue, but without consciousness and a fully-formed nervous system, removing a fetal sack is no more concerning than removing an appendix. (Or it's actually less concerning, since the body is incapable of producing another appendix.) It's incorrect to think of a fetus as "a baby who just hasn’t been born yet”. A fetus will become a baby, if the would-be mother decides to let her body continue the process to the point of fetal viability.

It's also worth mentioning the other factors: the massive guilt trips of religion and the unfair judgments that women face in society, and millions of years of evolution. They're all hammering away, all saying that baby-making is the purpose, the biological destiny of women, and going against that is the wrong move.

Hogwash, I say.

A woman's purpose is 100% up to her. A woman's body is 100% her own. Scientific studies of fetal consciousness, and statistics which show 98% of abortions occur in the first trimester, prove that in reality there is virtually no ethical dilemma associated with having an abortion. At least, no more than is involved with having a tooth pulled.

The anti-abortion crackpots are just as wrong about abortion as they are about young earth creationism and evolutionary biology, and for the same reason: denial of science. It's not a child, it's a choice.

Abortion: on demand, without apology, and without regret.

Well said.

You have made a judgment or you wouldn't have made the original post. You can judge by acting as a judge or by making a negative judgment about someone's behavior.

I say what I have to say and continue to support.

This is laudable. I wish everyone would be aware of their judgments of others, yet carry on their support of others.

I think your thoughts are good ones.

Too often the abortion debate becomes a polarized thing between individual rights and rights to life, rather than a compassionate thing about caring for young and old, both.  Ultimately people do have a choice.  Even if abortion is illegal they still have a choice, though it's riskier.  The real question should be how we with understanding and compassion help people faced with hard choices.

I suspect most of us would oppose abortion for the sake of gender or phenotype selection, of just not wanting to have a girl because boys are somehow "better", or only wanting children with blue eyes.  I suspect most of us would oppose abortion for eugenics reasons as well.  I suspect most of us would also accept abortion to save the life of the mother, or honor the choice of a woman in the case of rape or incest.

So most of us fall between the poles of abortion on demand and abortion never.  The debate doesn't reflect our real mores, or the personally difficult nature of this choice.  Most people are in the middle somewhere, and in the middle are the hard personal struggles with values and ethics that make us human.

Now as a man, I think I should have some say if the child is my own, and our activity was consensual.  I think two people choosing to have sex are choosing to be open to the possibility of pregnancy.  Even when using "protection", we know that is still a non-zero risk, and choose to incur it.  I don't think my opinion should be dispositive, but I do think I have a right (and an obligation) to be included in the decision.  A woman cutting a willing partner out of that decision seems as wrong to me as a man cutting and running and leaving the woman alone with the decision.

You are correct. Having a child is a mutual decision. I don't think it would be right for the woman to say oh well i'm aborting if the father of the child is willing to take on full responsibility.

But this is your opnion, and when opinions are involved then right and wrong go out the window. By that I mean actual right and wrong. To speak of right and wrong and opinion in the same breath is an oxymoron.

Now as a man, I think I should have some say if the child is my own, and our activity was consensual.  I think two people choosing to have sex are choosing to be open to the possibility of pregnancy.[...] I don't think my opinion should be dispositive, but I do think I have a right (and an obligation) to be included in the decision [to abort a pregnancy].  A woman cutting a willing partner out of that decision seems as wrong to me as a man cutting and running and leaving the woman alone with the decision.

If it's not dispositive (enforced by law) for a pregnant woman to include the male partner in her abortion decision (and it isn't) then it's not his right at all.

A man engages in the consensual activity of sex with this knowledge: pregnancy is possible and it's entirely up to the woman on whether or not to include him in an abortion decision. The right is hers alone.

Also true. So true Gallup. I think Dr. Bob was speaking from the standpoint of a couple in a consentual relationship (a narrow view, but thus a Catholic view).....

I didn't get that impression necessarily, but even so, it doesn't change anything. A woman still has 100% control over her own body, happily married or not. Hubby gets no say unless wifey gives him one.

I think (most of the time) abortions arise when women are in crisis.

This is true. Research shows an abortion decision is usually for multiple and interrelated reasons, with the top reasons being: interference with education, work or ability to care for dependents (74%); can't afford a baby (73%); single motherhood or relationship problems (48%); wanted no more kids (40%); and not ready for motherhood (33%). Very few cited parents' or partners' desire (under 1%).

Examples like myself or my friend (described below) ...........among many many more....I could write a book about women I've met who are in domestic vioilence situations who would benefit from an abortion vs being forced to carry to term. Women who are trying to leave often get pregnant because their abusers intentionally try to impregnante them. This happened to me, and almost every woman I've met (in group). It's a very common tactic of abusive men.

This, a thousand times. Abortion bans do little to preserve human life, but forcing pregnant women to full term is the subjugation of women. Reproductive rights are primarily women's rights and worthy of ferocious defense against those who would deny them.

Now as a man, I think I should have some say if the child is my own, and our activity was consensual.

As a husband, I had no desire to put my wife through another pregnancy, if she considered it too much of a hardship. And certainly, law should not intervene. (I mention law because I wouldn't put it past some lawmakers to attempt such intervention.) I'd rather adopt, if I wanted a child that badly.

I don't think an innocent child should die

That's the terminology that right-to-lifers use. It's not really a child, not at least until it has a human brain with activity. Until that point, it has just about as much in common with a salamander as it does with a human child.

Anyone who really believes that it's the death of a child at stake should be even more concerned with the many more fetuses and fertilized eggs that die naturally.

So people can hold various opinions about how laws should govern fetal rights, and I think it's okay to leave a lot of that up to the states. The states also define end-of-life for humans, e.g. with technical definitions of lack of brain activity. I think states should consider applying those same end-of-life definitions to beginning-of-life decisions.

I abhor abortion, but I think women need to have access to it anyway.  I became pregnant with my oldest child when the protection I was using failed.  I was in the 1% or whatever percentage it is that get pregnant while using that particular kind of protection.  Also, I am allergic to or cannot tolerate the other forms of birth control available, (and yes, I tried them).  I agree that, even though I was contraceptively challenged, I could have chosen to not be pregnant, just by being abstinent. My other two offspring are evidence that I didn't choose to go that way. 

As much as I think abortion is awful, I think that people who do not have the resources, either emotionally and/or financially, to care for the child, may be showing some good judgment by having an abortion no matter how the woman became pregnant.  Yes, there is always adoption, but I don't think a woman should be forced to carry a baby to term in a world that is overpopulated and, for millions on the planet, brutally cruel. 

That being said, I could not have had an abortion in the circumstances under which any of my children were conceived.  However, had I known then what at least one of my children was going to have to deal with in life, I would not have had any children at all.  Life doesn't work backwards, though. 

I think that the example of the woman who has had seven abortions shows a woman with something seriously out of whack.  My guess is that there is some benefit to society for some people, possibly like her, to self-select out of parenthood.  Whether this is right or not is irrelevant to me - I think she still should have the right, as sad as it is, to have an abortion. 

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