20-weeks-human-fetus3

The basic pro-life logic

To the sweet, beautiful, and intelligent young lady who came to me for help on her paper:

I would like to apologize if I gave you a hard time. I wanted to challenge your thought process, but since there is no such thing as not having a bias, I would like to take this forum to explain the reason why I am against legalized abortion. My hope is that you might consider my humble explanation with an open mind and a willingness to explore the facts and perspectives that make sense – even if you had never held them before.

Your paper topic was about finding strategies to make a moral decision about legal abortion, and I think the first strategy is to define. We must define what rights are and what life is. I continue to stress to you the importance of these definitions, because without them we cannot make an intellectually based moral decision.

Consider my logic:

1. Killing innocent people should not be legal.

2. Abortion kills innocent people.

3. Therefore, abortion should not be legal.

My first point is about the definition of rights. The pro-lifer makes the claim that all human beings have the right to life. It is apparent from the Declaration of Independence that God gave humans inalienable rights, one of them being life. It is also illegal to murder, and almost every civilization throughout time has had penalties and boundaries for killing human beings. In fact, sometimes murder laws are the most severe. Definitely there is evidence to establish that it is morally wrong to take away someone else’s right to life. Would you agree so far?

My second point is claiming that the unborn are living persons. They are alive, and they are human. The evidence that they are alive is found in the fact that if they were not, abortion would be unnecessary.

The evidence that they are human is found in biology. According to the Harvard Medical Institute, a human being has these traits: 46 chromosomes, human DNA, cell reproduction, reaction to stimuli, a metabolism, and growth. A baby, at the moment of fertilization, has all these traits. There is also a scientific law called The Law of Biogenesis which states that all creatures reproduce after their own kind. Dogs give birth to dogs, monkeys to monkeys, and humans to humans. So if a human woman is pregnant, we know by this law that she is pregnant with a human baby.

The unborn have their own heartbeat at three weeks, but abortions can be performed only at five weeks (at the earliest), so every abortion stops a beating heart. By the time many abortions are performed, the unborn can feel pain! Depending on their age, babies in the womb can laugh, cry, make faces, hear noises, and even pass gas.

So if I can prove that human beings have the inalienable right to life, and that the fetuses are living human beings, then I can logically conclude that abortion, since it takes away their right to live, is morally unacceptable.

A proponent of legal abortion must prove:

1. Why she has the right to choose to do whatever she wants with her own body. (If you recall, sometimes she does not have that right – as in the cases of suicide and drug abuse).

2. If a woman has a right to her own body, then doesn’t an unborn baby girl have that same right?

3. If women have a right to do what they want with their bodies, then legal abortion proponents must prove that the unborn are part of their mother’s body, and not a different entity (something I find impossible, seeing how the unborn have their own heartbeat, different DNA, a different blood type, a different brain from their mother’s – otherwise a pregnant woman would have two heads; four arms; and, if her baby is a boy, two different genders at once!)

Until pro-choicers address this, they have no intellectual grounds to accept legalized abortion. Anything else would be avoiding the question (a big question).

Last of all, my dear new friend, whose company I truly enjoyed, I must remind you of what you said: that having an abortion “just because” is cruel. I asked you why, and you said, “Because it’s killing just because.” Sis, it is the same cruelty to kill an innocent baby for any reason.

You also said something I thought was powerful. When I asked you if a mother could kill her toddler who was conceived in rape, you said, “No, because the mother has other options.” What a profound and wise response! I would like to add that mothers have those same options while they are still pregnant. Why should the baby get the death penalty for the father’s crime?

The truth is, the right to life that an unborn baby conceived in rape has is the same right that a toddler conceived in rape has – and not because she can talk, like you mentioned, but because she is a human being! The only difference between them is that the toddler is older.

I would like to end this by saying that government does have the moral right to impose its morality on others – but only when government’s morality is correct (remember, we talked about how government imposes its morality on us when it tells us not to rape or molest children). How we determine if government’s morality is correct…well, I guess that’s what your paper is about!

My dear, I wrote this for you because I was inspired by your intelligence and passion, and because I enjoyed our meeting very much. Like I said before, we write so we can influence our world. But before we write, we must truly believe and understand what it is about the world that we are changing.

With much love and tenderness,

Ana Benderas

P.S. If you’re up for it, here is a video that shows what an abortion really is. I think it’s important to know this before we can formulate an opinion. (Strong images. Discretion advised.)

And here is an article that explains exactly what is done in the abortion process.

Wishing you luck and success in all the good you do!

  • Jdjdjeeeeerrrryyy

    I think you have argument number three wrong. It’s not that the unborn isn’t its own entity, but that while its in the womb its still a part of the mothers body as it is literally attached to her by the umbilical cord, and its home for nine months is literally inside of the mother. That’s my understanding of that argument at least, as its what I’ve always heard. I don’t know where you got the multiple body parts argument.

    • Guest

      It’s a logical inference, since being part of something is necessarily a transitive relationship.  That is, if A is part of B and B is part of C then A is part of A.  Either the unborn is not really part of the mother’s body, or half of all pregnant women have penises.

      • Guest

         Sorry, that should read “if A is part of B and B is part of C then A is part of C”.

      • 12angry_men

        This doesn’t negate the fact that an unborn child is literally inside and attached to the mother, which I think was the point. 

        • Guest

          That doesn’t make it “part of the mother’s body”.  My computer is inside and attached to my wall, but that doesn’t make it part of the wall.

          It also doesn’t explain why it’s morally justified to kill them based on this relationship.

          • Jdjdjeeeeerrrryyy

            That wasn’t my intention. I don’t know why you can’t just address my comment without putting words into my mouth.

          • 12angry_men

            Why are you changing the subject? Can you not simply respond to what was said? I never said that it makes it “part of the mother’s body.” Do you deny the fact that an unborn is literally inside and attached to the mother, growing in part due to the sustenance it receives from the mother? These are facts, not opinions, facts. And I’m not attaching anything to them, I’m just stating them how they are. 

          • Guest

            When did I deny any of those?  I didn’t intend to do so, if that’s your understanding.  I was addressing the claim that the unborn is “still a part of the mother[']s body”, found in this post:

            http://liveactionnews.org/human-rights/the-basic-pro-life-logic/#comment-490653621

          • 12angry_men

            I was am more frustrated because of this:  “It also doesn’t explain why it’s morally justified to kill them based on this relationship.” This was never implied by me, or JDJ

    • Shelly200

      Yes, it is true that a baby is housed inside the mother during gestation, and is attached to the mother’s uterus through the umbilical cord. However, the argument that most pro-choicers use is simply “My body, My choice.” And many equate preborn babies to: moles, the appendix, an arm, etc. i.e. a PART of the mother. And if this was the case — that the baby was simply another part of the mother, like a mole on her arm– then they pro-choicers would have a lot stronger leg to stand on.

      However, growing inside of the mother does not make a baby a PART of her mother. And being attached to the mother through the umbilical cord also does not make a baby a PART of her mother. Take the example of conjoined twins. Twins could share any number of bodyparts: they could be attached through something simple like an arm or a foot… or they could share kidneys and lungs and have only one stomach between them. And yet, they are viewed as two separate people, not one.

      Also, the umbilical cord is not something that is always a part of the mother– a woman does not have an umbilical cord. The cord only comes into existence when a woman is pregnant. And the cord attaches to the lining of the uterus– something that is expelled every month if the woman is not pregnant (her period). The baby and the mother share the same space, and the mother helps the child grow by sharing her body’s nutrients with him/her, but that does not lessen the fact that the woman is one person and her growing child is another–they are not the same person. That is why the pro-life movement believes this argument holds no weight: it is not the mother’s body alone, therefore it should not be her choice to abort.

      • Bubba

        Hmmm…I don’t know the last time I saw a twin inside of another twin.

        • MoonChild02

          Conjoined twins usually share many body parts. That doesn’t make them one person, though. They are two separate people, i.e. Chang and Eng Bunker, and Daisy and Violet Hilton.

          Sometimes the life of one twin depends completely on the other, such as in the case of Anastasia and Tatiana Dogaru, in which Anastasia, although the stronger twin, has no kidneys, and depends on Tatiana for support.

          Another relevant case is that of Rose and Grace Attard, a.k.a. Mary and Jodie, where Mary completely depended on Jodie’s cardiopulmonary system, since her own was severely underdeveloped. Mary and Jodie’s parents had flown to the UK from Malta three months before the birth to save both of their children, since the UK is the leader in saving the lives of conjoined twins. However, according to UK laws, doctors have rights over parents. Against the girls’ Catholic parents’ wishes, but according to doctors’ wishes, the English Court of Appeals ordered the separation of Mary and Jodie, stating that Mary was sapping Jodie’s strength. As expected, Mary died. One of the justices hearing the case stated, “The moment the knife goes into that united body, it touches the body of unhappy, little Mary. It is in that second an assault.” The Archbishop of Westminster stated, “There is a fundamental moral principle at stake. No one can commit a wrong action that good may come of it.”

          • 12angry_men

            Haha you didn’t address the comment at all

          • Jdjdjeeeeerrrryyy

            It’s like twinception.

    • Isa241

      Technically, the
      umbilical cord is attached to the placenta which is then attached to the
      mother’s body. So fetus and mother are only indirectly attached by two separate
      temporary organs. Without these organs, a connection would not be possible.

      But what is the
      point? Does the fact that the fetus lives within the mother’s body mean that
      he/she is a part of the mother’s body? If so, than what about the countless
      different microorganisms that also live within your body? Would you consider a virus
      or bacteria a part of your body as well? What about an invading parasite such
      as a tapeworm?  They also live within
      your body but I have yet to hear someone claim that a tapeworm is a part of
      them. I guess it depends on how you look at it. They are within your body, yet
      they are foreign organisms that do not belong to your body.

      • 12angry_men

        Read the comment more closely. JDJ said ”
        It’s not that the unborn isn’t its own entity.” So there you go, question answered. 

  • Pingback: The Basic Pro-Life Logic | Foundation Life

  • Oedipa Mossmoon

    You lost me when you felt compelled to force the word “innocent” in the phrase “killing innocent people should not be legal”, thereby opting into the capital punishment mill of the prison industry, the war mongering of the military industry, and the horrendous outsourcing of protective lethal force (see Sanford, FL) to citizens with plenty of fears and plenty of guns. That is, of course assuming all those prisoners, blown-up people in Iraq and Afghanistan, and all the suspicious-looking folks who happen to be snooping around the house next to guy with the trigger-finger are all guilty.

    But then I’m glad I hung on to read this gem: “it is apparent from the Declaration of Independence that God gave humans inalienable rights”. Really? An article meant to be framed around logic uses a letter to the King of England in 1776 as proof of God? And what God’s purpose is for all of us? I mean, I dig Thomas Jefferson as much as the next gal, but that’s investing him with a little too much transcendent insight.

    • 12angry_men

      “I dig Thomas Jefferson as much as the next gal.” Just wanted to let you know that I quite literally laughed out loud at that line. I also spilled my coffee unfortunately; I must be tired. 

      • MoonChild02

        Despite how awful a person he may have been, you have to admit, he was a great writer, with great ideas. It’s just too bad he didn’t practice what he preached. Kind of like Richard Wagner and Michael Jackson – amazing writers/composers, terrible human beings.

    • Dolce

       One, you never know, the person she was talking to might believe in God.
      Two, do you not believe that humans have inalienable rights?

      • Oedipa Mossmoon

        Ms. Banderas is free to make the argument for God’s existence and the unalienable rights he has granted us. Just don’t appeal to the Declaration of Independence as proof, particularly if she is crafting the whole article as an attempt at sound logic.

        Look, there’s a strain in the tea-party/christian conservative nexus that conflates the divinity of scripture and the divinity of the founding fathers’ documents. That one line tells me Ms. Banderas is treading too close to that fallacy to make any claims of logical bona fides.

        • http://twitter.com/CalFreiburger Calvin Freiburger

          The sentence could have been worded better, but still, it’s a rather obtuse reading of what’s above to really think Ana was literally arguing that the Declaration of Independence proves God’s existence. From the context, it’s clear that all she meant was that “unalienable rights come from God” is the theoretical principle at the heart of American law. And she’s right.

          • Oedipa

            Not sure I agree with you (English common law is the bedrock of American Law), but since I’m not going to be in the business of arguing against John Locke (whose work inspired both Jefferson’s phrase and the Bill of Rights, and who was informed as much by social contract theory as he was natural laws handed down by a divinity), I’ll take your word for her intentions.

          • http://twitter.com/CalFreiburger Calvin Freiburger

            Thanks for mentioning Locke. God is at the heart of his conception of man, too: the 2nd Treatise presupposes that men are “all the workmanship of one omnipotent, and infinitely wise maker; all the servants of one sovereign master, sent into the world by his order, and about his business; they are his property, whose workmanship they are, made to last during his, not one another’s pleasure.”

    • Opinionated

       The Declaration of Independence, as a founding document of the United States of America, represents our highest ideals and virtues.  It’s not as “proof of God” as you state, but rather a reflection of our values and recognition that there is a Creator from whom certain unalienable rights are derived.  It is not a “proof of God” but a well-respected statement of the inherent value of human life as derived from a source of power and authority higher than the whims of man.  Do you deny that humans have certain rights, and the right to life being one of them?  You don’t actually have to believe in a Creator to believe in human rights.  I believe respect for human life should be something the USA should aspire to be known for and I would agree that we can do better living up to our ideals.  As for innocent human life, it is a graver moral situation to take the life of an innocent than one who has done some wrong act.  Capital punishment, military action, and other forms of killing are outside of the scope of this article.

      • 12angry_men

        Tell that to the families of the people wrongly put to death. 

    • MoonChild02

      Capital punishment is wrong, because it kills people who are otherwise incarcerated for life without chance of parole, and cannot harm others. Furthermore, several of those who have been killed have been posthumously exonerated, meaning, the state killed innocent people. Therefore, the statement “killing innocent people should not be legal” fits the description of anti-capital punishment just fine.

      Unjust war is wrong (i.e. Vietnam, both Gulf Wars, etc.), but just war is self-defense (i.e. both World Wars, Afghanistan, etc.). Unless you want to live under tyranny for the rest of your life, those in the military are trying to protect us. They know that they are putting themselves in harm’s way, but most of them choose to do so of their own free will. It is wrong, however, to force someone into war, which is why it should be illegal to recruit under false pretenses, and those who don’t want to fight should be given a non-combative job, out of the way of harm. However, it is not wrong for the military to fight and protect others from harm. It is wrong to injure innocent civilians in the midst of the war, as well, which is another reason, other than protecting our military, why so much scientific research has gone into military technology. Therefore, “killing innocent people should not be legal” fits the description of being anti-unjust war.

      Outsourcing of protective lethal force to citizens is wrong, as well. Zimmerman should not have used lethal force against Trayvon. You never know if the person who is gunned down, although suspicious looking, might be innocent. If they want to use some means of immobilizing a suspect, or keep the suspect from using lethal force him/herself, citizens should use pepper spray, or bring back police call boxes. At the absolute most, a stun gun could be used, but only in extreme circumstances. Zimmerman should not have been on his own, either. In any sort of protection detail, there should always be two, since they can keep each other from doing stupid things (like hunting down and shooting an innocent), it allows for there to be more witness to a crime, and it is easier to get the truth out of two than one. Therefore, “killing innocent people should not be legal” fits the description of being anti-lethal force.

      As for the Declaration of Independence, I think that she didn’t quite mean it like that, even if it was a noticeable error (everyone makes mistakes now and then). I think she meant to say that the Declaration of Independence could be used to establish a legal precedent making it apparent in a court of law that God gave humans certain inalienable rights, one of them being life. Thomas Jefferson’s letter to the Baptist churches is used as a legal document to establish the Wall of Separation. Therefore, the Declaration of Independence, a document considered legal by the forefathers of our nation, should be allowed, as well. I don’t think she meant that Thomas Jefferson knew God’s thoughts, that the Declaration proves God exists, or anything of the sort.

      • Oedipa

        Capital punishment is applied inequitably in this country. A guy could still be guilty and yet his death at the hand of the state can be the unjust result of his skin color, the station of his victim, inadequate legal defense, or the vindictiveness of politicians (see Perry, Rick). It only makes it worse that it’s just us and Japan in the industrialized world who still embraces the practice. War is applied profusely in this country. In response to watching 3,000 of our fellow citizens die in one day, our country went out and killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqi and Afghani citizens over the course of a decade. Some of them, I’m sure, were guilty of something. Some of them.And guns are an increasingly paranoid population’s salvation. Joe Horn in Pasadena Texas sure did stop two guilty guys in their tracks. Shot them in the back with a shotgun after they exited his neighbor’s window with a sack of goods. They were hardly innocent. But, then, so was Joe Horn because of Texas’s Stand Your Ground excuse to go shoot people.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1045287380 Stephanie Ray Johnson

    The strange thing is to me – why is it if someone kills a pregnant woman, that person is then charged with two counts of murder.  The mother and the child.  Case in point – Scott Peterson.  

  • KSchaffer

    The definition hinges on whether a forming human that is not able to survive on it’s own can be defined as a person who is alive. That is the crux of the debate.

     Any human that is in the stages of formation from the day of conception onwards must have a definitive point at which its life has become self sustaining. Until that point, it is merely a formation of growing tissue that by pure definition is a parasite. That parasite (please note I am being specific here rather than derogatory) is not yet “alive” in the sense of those of us reading as it is not able to breathe, think, feel or have any conscious awareness which forms the very basis of our humanity.

    So from a purely logical point sans emotion – no – a forming baby in the womb is not an alive person in any context that would result in it having a right to continue developing life without the ongoing consent of its host (mother). The only time in which it would gain “rights” would be at the point of full formation when it is able to self sustain outside of the womb.

    The underlying truth is that pro lifers don’t care for logic and tend towards viewing all forms of “life” (with the exception of sentient beings of the non human variety) as sacred. So it’s all a bit moot when emotion, religion and a skewed sense of ethics come in to play.

    • JOrsini

      Your “crux of the debate” is nonsense. None of us can “survive on [our] own.” From conception to death, we’re all dependent on others for our existence. Is your life truly “self sustaining”? When was the last time you foraged for your own food? Hunted for your own meat? Built your own house? Formulated your own medicine? How did you educate yourself? Did you read books written only by you? Whose language did you use? Do you have a family? Did you reproduce asexually? And on and on…

      • 12angry_men

        Once again, I think you are missing the point (not that I necessarily agree with it). See my comment above.

    • Isa241

      Something is alive
      if it moves, grows, reacts to stimuli, is capable of reproduction, can adapt
      and evolves. A fetus is all of those things. According to science, human life
      begins at conception. http://www.westchesterinstitute.net/images/wi_whitepaper_life_print.pdf

      The idea of “personhood”
      is based on philosophy not science. So by saying that the fetus is not a living
      person because they cannot sustain their own life, you’re arguing based on your own beliefs, not science.

      And based on your argument,
      you oppose abortion after viability?

    • Revel8r

       If the point abortion is wrong is when they can survive an their own, newborns cant’ survive on their own…toddlers can’t survive on their own.  Based on your “crux” killing newborns and toddlers is legal abortion.

      • 12angry_men

        I think he/she meant survive in the way that a newborn can breathe on its own, has a developed brain, etc. Not that it can get food on its own. 

        • MoonChild02

          No one’s brain is fully developed until the early to mid 20s, which is why it’s illegal in the US to consume alcohol until one reaches the age of 21.

          As to breathing on their own, many newborns are admitted to the NICU because they still can’t breathe on their own. Should it be legal to kill those children, or let them die, just because they cannot breathe on their own? Should it be legal to kill those who have to live on a ventilator, breathing tube, or some other form of unnatural respiratory system? No. They are people, they are human beings. Killing a human being is wrong.

          • 12angry_men

            Why do you keep replying to me with this negative tone when I merely state facts in my comments? Once again, what you said does not negate the facts in my comment; why are you replying to me in this tone when I am only clarifying somebody else’s position that is not necessarily my own? A simple, “Ah, okay I see that now, I’ll go respond to the original comment accordingly,” would suffice. 

          • MoonChild02

            I wasn’t replying in a negative tone. If my comments seem negative, I’m sorry. I usually write with more of an attitude of, “I hope that I can change the opinions of these people, and help someone”, than anything that would be negative and hurtful. I’m sorry if I come off that way, as I don’t mean to be negative or hurtful. I’m an empath, which means that I’m a compassionate person, and I feel what others do. Yes, this – sometimes – includes online interactions. It’s difficult to explain, but the pain of others actually causes me pain. Therefore, I hate it when someone hurts or is angry, frustrated, etc. I try to take care not to hurt others. Obviously I’m not doing a good enough job, and need to work on it.

            As to the reply, I thought you were in agreement with KSchaffer, so I thought it best to reply to both under your one reply. I’m sorry, I should not have assumed. In my defense, I’m getting over a cold right now, which tends to lower my reading comprehension, due to the increased headaches and stuffiness. While that is no excuse for my actions, it’s probably why I misread what you wrote.

        • Philippian449

          A newborn does not have a ‘developed’ brain — it is still developing outside the womb, and without a caretaker/”host” to feed/nourish it even outside the womb, it cannot survive.  Nor can a newborn always breath on his/her own, thus the medical advice that parents not put babies to sleep on their tummies…. 

          • Jdjdjeeeeerrrryyy

            Sighhhhh. I swear some people don’t read the comments carefully on purpose. Read the last sentence.

    • MoonChild02

      An unborn child is not a parasite. A parasite is of a different species than the host, and is harmful to the host.
      From the American Heritage Stedman’s Medical Dictionary:

      parasite  par·a·site (pār’ə-sīt’)
      n.
       An organism that grows, feeds, and is sheltered on or in a different organism while contributing nothing to the survival of its host.

      From the American Heritage Science Dictionary:

      parasite  (pār’ə-sīt’)
      An organism that lives on or in a different kind of organism (the host) from which it gets some or all of its nourishment. Parasites are generally harmful to their hosts, although the damage they do ranges widely from minor inconvenience to debilitating or fatal disease.

      If you really think that those whose life is not self sustaining are not worthy of life, then you’re saying that preterm babies should not be hooked up to equipment in the NICU, where they are spending money, and using hospital resources. You are saying that those who are quadriplegic should not be cared for, as well as those in vegetative states, those in the ICU, and those who have to live on a breathing and/or feeding tube. 

      Babies in the womb do think, feel, etc. Scientific studies have found that they play, as well as react to touch, painful sensations, sound, light flashed on the mother’s abdomen, etc. Scientific studies have found that newborns recognize their mother’s voice, remember music they heard in the womb, and cry in the tones of their mother’s native language. Just because a system is underdeveloped does not mean that system is not functional. The brain does not even finish developing until the early to mid 20s, which is why, in the US, it is illegal to drink until the age of 21. The respiratory system doesn’t finish developing until a baby is several months old. Babies breathe with their diaphragm muscles, instead of their chest and shoulder muscles, like most adults do. All singers, musicians, and actors have to unlearn the latter, while relearning the former.

      Here are a few relevant links:
      http://www.physorg.com/news/206164323-twin-fetuses-social-womb.html
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8346058.stm
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091105092607.htm
      http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/story?id=97635&page=1
      http://www.edu-cyberpg.com/Literacy/whatresearchwomb.asp
      http://health.howstuffworks.com/pregnancy-and-parenting/pregnancy/fetal-development/alertness-in-the-womb.htm
      http://www.pregnancy.org/article/babys-senses-womb
      http://www.eheart.com/cesarean/babies.html

  • Gopreds227

    I’m pro choice. We’ll suck that muck right out of you.

    • Sigh

      I bet you were too cool for school huh?

  • Student

    Hi Ana, 
    I am a medical student in Texas and as you may know, we are facing a lot of controversy regarding the suspension of federal funds to Planned Parenthood. This topic has become very relevant lately. Anyway, I am pro-life, but I do find that what you call an “intellectually based moral decision” has a lot of holes. Pro-choice folks will try to get you there. First, you need to establish medical or biological reasons why you believe that an unborn child is considered a person, and when he or she is considered a person, and also give facts as to when the child has a heartbeat, feels pain, etc. Simply stating you think he or she is a person with rights is an empty argument to someone pro-choice engaging in this debate with you. Please be specific, and don’t represent the pro-life community as one without their facts straight.

  • Dnorgaisse98

    This is the best argument that I’ve heard in a long time. Thank you, Ana, for sharing your reasons as to why you are a pro-choicer and for sharing them with us! God bless.

  • Sparky

    Could you be any more condescending and self righteous?  I can only hope that this student to whom you refer is as much a fiction of your imagination as the idea you have that you’ve presented a salient argument.  You are anything but humble and I just wonder what makes you think you can speak with such authority.   You should remember that stating the obvious is the last refuge of the unimaginative in an attempt to avoid the real question at hand.  Of course it’s a life and of course it’s human in the same sense that every cell in your body is a life and human.  The real question that seemingly escapes you is whether it’s a person entitled to protections separate from the life that sustains it.

    • http://twitter.com/CalFreiburger Calvin Freiburger

      “Of course it’s a life and of course it’s human in the same sense that every cell in your body is a life and human.”

      This statement is so biologically illiterate that one can’t help but shake their head at the insanity that pro-aborts are ever considered to be the pro-science side.

    • Jdjdjeeeeerrrryyy

      I think we can both agree a cell in the human body will not develop into a human

      • Sparky

        Really?  Do you think there’s something about the cells of sheep and other mammals that make them and only them uniquely fit for cloning?  We don’t clone humans for lots of reasons, but that they lack potential is not among them.  And in any event what are identical twins if not the result of a natural cloning process?

        • 12angry_men

          Oh come on Sparky. If I take a single cell from my body, leave it alone, it will not develop into anything. It’s one thing to use logical arguments to share/defend your position, and a whole other deal to completely ignore biology and science. You can’t deny that a fertilized egg, zygote, or whatever the heck you want to call it is different from the rest of the cells in our body. 

          • Sparky

            I would argue that you’re talking about a difference in degree and not one of essence.  Last time I checked you can’t take an ovum on its own and expect something to happen either.  You have to do something to it first.  I would also point out that identical twins occur after fertilization – on their own.  It’s also noteworthy that not that long ago it was commonly thought that stems cells could only be harvested from a limited number of sources.  Today we know that they can be harvested from a much greater number of sources.  My only point is that we should not confuse matters of degree or current technological limitations with the essence of a matter – and it doesn’t seem to me that qualifies as ignoring science.

          • 12angry_men

            Of course identical twins occur after fertilization. That’s part of what makes a fertilized egg different from a normal cell; the fact that it can do that in the womb without any prodding from outside sources (like scientists).  But I do agree that technology is advancing rapidly, and in twenty years who knows what we’ll be able to do.

    • Wade Felty

      Thank you. 

  • John

    1. Fetuses are not yet “people” using the legal definitions of law which the author erronously tries to assert using the Declaration of Independence, which is not law.

    2. Abortion terminates a pregnancy. 

    3, Miscarriage terminates a pregnancy. We do not charge women who have miscarriages with involuntary manslaughter.

    Fifth paragraph: Civilization throughout time have made sacrifices to various gods, nature, what have you. They have executed people in the name of God and by “legal” executions. 

    Six paragraph: All cells in one’s body are alive. A fertilized egg is not a living person.

    seventh paragraph: At the moment of fertization, a fetus still lacks the characteristics of a human being. Actually The Law of Biogenesis, attributed to Louis Pasteur, states that life arises from pre-existing life, not from nonliving material.

    eight paragraph: Heartbeats do not make a human and there is disagreement on when fetuses can feel pain (or to what exent).

    Suicide and drug use are legal in some countries (and suicide was even expected in cases of dishonor in some cultures). These are societal mores and subject to change.

    An unborn “baby girl” has no rights, any more than your three-year-old can drive a car, vote, or enter into contracts.

    The unaborn is attached to the mother through an umbilical cord and is a “parasite” in terms of it feeding and sustaining life solely through the mother. 

    I agree that, if you are “pro-life” that aborting a child because its parentage is contradictory. If you are “pro-choice,” then is it an abomination to force a women to carry a pregnancy inflicted on her by force.

    Unborn “babies” do not have the same rights as toddlers.

    Government imposes “its” or rather society’s morals on other as the author pointed out with the laws against drug use and suicide.  It is society’s morals that saw we shouldn’t steal, rape, molest children (and decide what age they are no longer children), etc. 

    • Guest

       1. Why are fetuses not “people”, and why do you think it is a good idea to separate the definitions of “people” and “humans”?

      2. A pregnancy is when you have a new human growing inside of you. So if abortion terminates a pregnancy, it kills a human when it is inside the womb.

      3. We also don’t charge a family with manslaughter if their grandfather dies of natural causes inside of the family’s home. If the family actively kills the grandfather, then we charge them with murder. Same idea applies to miscarriages vs. elective abortions.

      A “fertilized egg” is not a cell that is a part of the mother’s body. Also, “fertilized eggs” are NEVER aborted – abortions occur when the “fertilized egg” is much older – when it is an embryo or a fetus, so really you shouldn’t even be focusing on this argument because it does not apply to most abortions in practice. If anything, this argument does apply to contraceptive methods that could prevent implantation, but even then, the “fertilized egg” is much older than a single cell that has joined with a sperm.

      Certainly, laws are subject to societal norms and are therefore subject to change. I am unsure of what your point is. though. Do you mean that we should just do away with laws since they are transitory? Are laws devoid of any reason or intrinsic meaning because they tend to follow trends within a society? Should we not attempt to form laws that make sense and are founded on reason and principles because what we believe are reasoned principles are also subject to change? Does that mean laws that allowed slavery or any other atrocity are just as valid as the laws that did away with such things?

      Unborn girls or boys have NO rights at all. A three-year-old has a right to life, to health, to care, and to education. You cannot compare the two.

      You did not quite use the definition of parasite properly.
       

    • http://twitter.com/CalFreiburger Calvin Freiburger

      1. Once upon a time, blacks weren’t people under the law, either. We rightly take that fact as meaningless in determining whether they should have been treated as such. Fetuses under people under basic logic and biological fact. The Declaration isn’t law, but it is the nation’s fundamental statement of principles, making it not only appropriate but necessary to consider its conceptions of man, rights, liberty, and government in making political decisions.

      2. Abortion terminates a pregnancy by killing a human being.

      3. We don’t punish miscarriages simply because nobody is at fault. To refuse to understand something so obvious is pure sophistry.

      5. So?

      6. You’re positing a false understanding of biology that is either severely ignorant or deliberately dishonest. Body cells are only alive in the sense that they’re organic matter, but they’re functionally and genetically part of another human being. Fertilization is universally understood by biology textbooks to be the beginning of a new individual that is alive, grows, and genetically is complete and distinct from his or her mother.

      7. A fertilized fetus has every characteristic it needs to be defined as a live member of Homo sapien: complete, unique DNA that contains the information for all those other human characteristics, which will manifest if the baby is simply allowed to grow and his or her nourishment isn’t interrupted. Further, if you’re going to argue that certain characteristics make humans worthy of rights, then the burden is on you to explain why those characteristics are ethically significant.

      8. No, heartbeats don’t make humans human. HUMANITY makes humans human.

      Regarding baby girl’s rights to vote, drive, etc., you’re confusing natural rights with legal rights. A similar fallacy seems to be informing your apparent suggestion that all morality is the creation of social consensus.

      Regarding the “parasitism” of the unborn, unborn babies are not foreign entities of a lower species; they are every bit as human as their mothers, and they are the natural result of the human body functioning CORRECTLY (in most cases as a direct result of the mother’s willful actions). The umbilical cord is merely the delivery system for the very same nourishment every human needs at every stage of development. It is no more morally significant than spoons, straws, IVs, or iron lungs.

      Lastly, as horrifying as rape is, it has no bearing whatsoever on the question of whether or not the unborn baby is a human being with a right to life.

      • Guest

        We don’t punish miscarriages simply because nobody is at fault.

        Women have been punished for miscarriages: that’s what states do with fetal homicide laws.  People who advocate prosecuting women who have had miscarriages mostly claim that they only want to pursue cases where the pregnant woman engaged in conduct that is already illegal, like drug use (though they don’t have to prove that drug use actually caused the miscarriage), but they haven’t given any reason for the rest of us to believe that they don’t want miscarriages to be routinely investigated to be sure that no illegal conduct has occurred.  There’s always a police investigation when a child dies unexpectedly; if logic proves that the unborn have the same rights as born children, then why should a miscarriage be investigated any differently than any other child’s accidental death?

        http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jun/24/america-pregnant-women-murder-charges

        • Guest

           Annnd what exactly is wrong with a police investigation if there is evidence of wrong-doing? If the laws aren’t working and are punishing women for absolutely no reason, or are being used to target certain women for reasons OTHER than the purposeful death of their children, then by all means, change the laws. But if a woman purposely, through negligence or by actively killing her child, does something to cause her baby’s death then what exactly is the problem with a police investigation?

          Like you said, this happens with born children all the time. In those cases, are the police abusing the mothers and fathers and families of the born children who died by making sure that the child’s death was not a homicide? No? Then why exactly would they be abusing the mothers or fathers or families of the unborn children who have also died?

          • Guest

            Annnd what exactly is wrong with a police investigation if there is evidence of wrong-doing?

            But how will you know if there is wrongdoing, since currently miscarriage is a medical matter rather than a social or legal one?  We could say that doctors should inform on women who have had miscarriages, but that violates medical privacy laws.  Maybe there could be a hotline for people to call, or perhaps women should have to register with the police as soon as they have a positive pregnancy test, and then the police should investigate if there’s no baby within nine months. It’s the only way to be sure.

            The thing of it is, Guest, when people who support abortion rights say that women might be prosecuted for abortions if Roe v. Wade is overturned, pro-lifers accuse them of being alarmist.  When people who support abortion rights say that anti-abortion laws could lead to miscarrying women being subject to police investigations, pro-lifers deny that that is what they want.  But as you show, Guest, that is what they want.  Perhaps not every pro-lifer supports treating women who have lost pregnancies as potential criminals, but all that matters is that there are prosecutors out there who do.

  • Wade Felty

    Dear Ana, 

    No one has to “prove” anything for an abortion to be legal. They are legal. It is none of your business. Women don’t need to pass your test to have an abortion. They can have one. It’s their right. It’s your right to believe in your own mumbo-jumbo, but keep  your beliefs out of other people’s uterus.

  • you-are-false

    “unborn are living persons” . utterly false. An unborn, is an unborn. It’s not a living person, It has the potential to become a living person, but its not a living person. By saying that an UNborn is a living person, you are saying that each time you are not trying to conceive a child, you are killing an innocent person. The only logical reason base of the pro-life argumentation is that “I’m too emotional to abort this baby”, and that is a fair argument. But don’t try to justify logically the pro-life argument because its just based the emotional nature of people and not the logical.