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Caesar’s Thumb

June 26, AD2014 102 Comments

“The sophistry is overwhelming: If I choose and desire my child, then ipso facto I have granted it the right to live, and it will live. But the inverse is equally the case, by means of nothing more or less than my choice: Caesar’s thumb is up, or Caesar’s thumb is down.”

Lord Nicholas Windsor, Caesar’s Thumb, First Things, December 1, 2010

Please picture in your mind, if you will, two murder victims, both females, who are both exactly the same age. Let’s assume that all the evidence is clear—in fact, the murderers admit to intentionally killing each victim—and let’s name one murder victim ‘A’ and the second murder victim ‘B’.

Imagine that A is murdered in a building on the north side of Main Street, and a B is murdered in a building on the south side of Main Street. A’s murder on the north side is investigated, prosecuted and the murderer is sent to jail because it is considered illegal, but B’s murder on the south side is held to be complete legal, merely because it occurred in that location, and is not prosecuted.

Imagine that A and B are killed by the mothers of A and B, but A’s murder takes place two weeks earlier than B’s murder. A’s murder is legal simply because it occurred at a different time than B’s killing, which is investigated and prosecuted.

Finally, ponder another scenario in which A is killed by her father and B is killed by her mother. The father is prosecuted and imprisoned according to the law, but the mother is never prosecuted because her killing of her daughter is held to be completely legal.

Ridiculous and arbitrary, wouldn’t you think? Why would one victim’s murder be illegal, and the other completely legal merely based upon factors of time, place and assailant? How is a killing not a killing?

Both A and B are “unborn members of the species homo sapiens.”

Under the Ohio Revised Code (as in most states), Section 2903.01 states that:

No person shall purposely, and with prior calculation and design, cause the death of another or the unlawful termination of another’s pregnancy. (A) “Unlawful termination of another’s pregnancy” means causing the death of an unborn member of the species homo sapiens, who is or was carried in the womb of another, as a result of injuries inflicted during the period that begins with fertilization and that continues unless and until live birth occurs. (B) “Another’s unborn” or “such other person’s unborn” means a member of the species homo sapiens, who is or was carried in the womb of another, during a period that begins with fertilization and that continues unless and until live birth occurs.

Note the mother need not die, only the fetus. If the fetus were not considered a life, Section 2903.01, an aggravated murder statute could not exist. Under Ohio law, an unborn member of our human species is considered worthy of protection, except when it is not. When the place is an abortion clinic, when the time is anytime before birth and the mother is the murderer’s accomplice, the victim is deemed not worthy of legal protection.

When slavery was abolished by law by the 13th amendment, it was thought to be the end of our arbitrary determination that some humans were citizens worthy of legal protection and some were not. The infamous 3/5ths compromise resulted from the conflict between southerners’ abhorrence to view slaves as citizens for purposes of legal protection versus their desire to count them as such for purposes of congressional seats. Common during that time as well were northerners who claimed that while they could never themselves keep slaves, they felt that it was not their business to tell southerners how to run their plantations. Abraham Lincoln challenged their hypocrisy in a speech made in 1860 in New York:

“You say that you think slavery is wrong, but you denounce all attempts to restrain it. Is there anything else that you think wrong, that you are not willing to deal with as a wrong? Why are you so careful, so tender of this one wrong and no other?”

It has been commonly claimed that more access to chemical birth control will cause a decline in the abortion rate. Not true. The rate of abortion has stayed essentially the same since 2008: approximately 20 per 1000 women and 54% of women who obtained abortions in the past year were using birth control during the month they became pregnant.

Chemical birth control has not prevented abortion, and abortion has not become “rare.”Rather it has it encouraged all of us to play Caesar, it has allowed us to be “not willing to deal with as a wrong” the murder of unborn children, and it has denigrated all of us. Each of us can legally and arbitrarily decide if a “member of the species homo sapiens” deserves to live or deserves to die.

Truly, we are no better than slave owners.

“Whenever I hear anyone arguing for slavery I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally.” (Abraham Lincoln, 1865). Just as all who promoted slavery were free; all who promote abortion are already living.

As history teaches us, whenever we are legally able to determine that one class of persons can live or die, all of us are at risk to be subject to the arbitrary turn of Caesar’s thumb.

Filed in: Law, Life, Social

About the Author:

After marrying her husband, Jim Roberts, in 1980, Cynthia Millen graduated from law school and practiced in Ohio for a short while. Excited about having a large family, Jim and Cindy were blessed more quickly than expected with the birth of five children in four years (two set of twins). Her love for reading and writing grew into the publication of several children's books (under the name C. M. Millen), poems and short stories (including a 2014 Tuscany prize winner). Millen earned her Masters in Literature from Trinity College, Dublin, and relishes the teaching (and learning) of reading, writing, and grammar with middle school students at Christ the King School in Toledo, Ohio. Most of all, she treasures attending Mass there with wonderful parishioners and truly marvelous priests.

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  • Phil Dzialo

    This comment is not intended to take exception to your position on abortion. It is intended to take exception to one fact you relate regarding the interaction between contraception and abortion: “It has been commonly claimed that more access to chemical birth control will cause a decline in the abortion rate. Not true. The rate of abortion has stayed essentially the same since 2008.” There is no source cited for this data.

    “A new study by investigators at Washington University reports that providing birth control to women at no cost substantially reduces unplanned pregnancies and cuts abortion rates by a range of 62 to 78 percent compared to the national rate.” This is a recent extensive study by the Washington University School of Medicine. The entirety is below:

    http://medschool.wustl.edu/news/patient_care/Contraceptive_Choice

    • Cynthia Millen

      My stats are based upon the most current Guttmacher study—-sorry, don’t have the cite handy—but I wanted to refer to studies that are not typically pro-life friendly and would give conservative statistics. Essentially, abortion sky-rocketed when it first became legal, and then has leveled off over the last several years. The point is that, in theory, birth control was seen as the “cure-all” for abortion. If it were easily accessible, abortion would be a thing of the past. That is definitely not the case.
      I don’t doubt your statistics, and I appreciate your thoroughness. Well done!

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Cynthia! -“but I wanted to refer to studies that are not typically pro-life friendly and would give conservative statistics”. Of course you do, everybody “quotes” stats that favor their position. i am glad you admit that you do that. Would yoy call all statistics that contradict yours “pro-life friendly”, even if they are neutral? I suspect so

      PS “Abortion sky rocketed when it first became legal” Any statistics about the drop in illegal abortions causing death and irreparable damage?

    • john654

      Yea, we really need are loving government to step in! Here are the “Acceptable” loses: http://choiceproject.wustl.edu/

  • Bill S

    This is just another one of those pro-life justifications for trying to deny an essential right of a woman to have access to safe and legal abortion services. Regardless of what you think about the rights of the unborn, in progressive countries, those rights are trumped by the rights of a pregnant woman. You can make all the comparisons you want to when it should be legal to kill another human being and when it should be illegal to do so. A young woman living in a progressive country is guaranteed certain rights by that country. If you don’t want to live in such a country, I suggest you move to a country like Ireland or Chile or some other country that allows its government to be influenced by religion.

    • Cynthia Millen

      Good morning, Bill. Thanks for your comments.
      First, I have lived in Ireland, and wrote a law book about their right of privacy. Ironically, their constitution, written by Eamon de Valera, was modeled closely on that of the U.S. Freedom of and “from” religion is strictly guaranteed and even more strongly protected than under our Constitution. All schools, whether they are Catholic, Church of Ireland, Jewish, or non-religious, are funded by the state. The entire environment of the nation is life-affirming—meaning that pregnant woman, no matter their marital status, are helped by public and private resources, and all Irish children are cared for. There are no Irish children who are adopted outside of Ireland as there is no need, and all are cared for very well.
      Second, you must see the hypocrisy of our current laws in which a life is, in one instance, determined to be worth saving and spending our public funds on to defend (by means of prosecuting unlawful deaths and imprisonment for the felon) versus another life of exactly the same age as not deemed worthy of protecting.
      In order to be consistent in your thinking, Bill, you should submit that states dispose of their aggravated murder statues for fetuses who are killed in crimes committed against mothers. If it is OK for a mother to kill her fetus, why is it not OK for an assailant to kill her fetus? Remember, the murder of a fetus during the commission of another crime is a separate offense in the majority of states.
      The fundamental question here is this: Why does a person have the right to determine if another living entity is worthy of life? What other living entities do you feel can be determined to be unworthy of life? I am not being flip here. You only need to look at the Action T4 program instituted in Nazi Germany in which hundreds of thousands of babies and children with disabilities were gassed and cremated between 1938 and 1945. When you answer these questions, Bill, then you can build the rest of your argument.
      You and I would agree that a pregnant woman is not carrying a tumor. I would further submit that right to “choose” ends where another’s right to “live” begins.

    • Bill S

      That’s probably one of the most knowledgable, well informed and rational responses I have ever received. You certainly make a good argument.

      What can be said about the rights of a woman that make them more important than the rights of a fetus (and even of a newborn)? As we experience life, it becomes more valuable to us. As you get to know people better, they become more valuable to us. To snuff out a woman’s dream of having a child is a terrible thing to do. If she doesn’t want a child that is an entirely different matter. To force her to carry and bear a child she doesn’t want is also a terrible thing to do. You don’t miss what you never had. A fetus never experienced anything more than life in the womb. And no one got to know it as a person. As personally you or I might feel about aborting a fetus, it’s not our call. The father might have some say in it but the mother has the final say on it.

      Exterminating people who have come to know and appreciate life and loved ones is far more inhumane than aborting a life that has yet to gain any self-realization or any appreciation of living in this world.

      That’s the crux of my argument. I appreciate having learned something about Ireland. Interesting.

    • Cynthia Millen

      Thanks for your kind response, Bill. You obviously have thought a lot about this, though it is true that we are coming from differing starting points.

      The problem that I see with your viewpoint, even if you don’t believe that a fetus has a soul or there is any God/god who created him/her, is where is your cut-off point? If your argument is that it’s permissible to abort a life before it has “experienced anything” or before “anyone has gotten to know it as a person,” at what age does that occur? Two months? Six months? What if the baby is disabled and really is not aware for many months? By your reasoning, it would be perfectly acceptable to kill a newborn up to about 2 months of age or even older.

      What about the other end? If a person has Alzheimer’s and doesn’t know anyone or anything anymore, is it permissible to kill that person? Wouldn’t our memories of that person be the same as if they were dead?

      That is the problem I have with your reasoning.

      Finally, pregnancy is not a disease (having had personal experience) and certainly not as violent or troublesome as death. Asking a woman to carry a baby for nine months and then give him/her up for adoption is far less of a burden than killing a life whom others could know and love and who could impact the world in unimaginable ways.

      Thanks again for writing.

    • Bill S

      Cynthia,

      I used to go to mass every day and some days I did all the mysteries of the rosary up to four times in a day. One day I decided that the whole thing was just a big waste of time because I didn’t see any good coming from it. I read The God Delusion and every other book by the New Atheist and here I am.

      I believe in terminating more lives than any laws in any countries allow. Particularly at the end of life and including what would be seen by many as eugenics. I have even attempted to end my own life.

      My wife is a devout Catholic and I say the rosary with her on her drive into work. Then I come home to a failing self-employment.

      I see the world much differently than you and I know why. I would say we should draw the line right where it is here and now, but maybe with Oregon’s death with dignity laws nationwide.

      I do understand where you are coming from but I don’t accept what is the product of your religious beliefs. You do make a good argument without referring to them. But when push comes to shove, I’m sure they influence your judgement.

    • Cynthia Millen

      Bill,
      You are correct, just as your beliefs affect yours and everyone is affected by their environment and the paradigm in which they live and were raised.
      That is one reason why I wanted to prove to myself that abortion was illogical and unreasonable without resorting to my faith. And I found that affirming life is true according to the Natural Law and is the clearly most logical position of the two.
      If we are going to support life, we can’t just rely upon faith because that presumes that people are coming from the same faith place as we are. We must be able to give coherent, logical arguments.

      Keep writing—-it’s nice to have civil discussion about this. You have obviously thought a lot about all of this.

      Take care and all the best to you.
      C

    • Bill S

      I am willing to admit that a secular person should be able to see the logic behind being pro-life. I am pro-choice because a mistake I made over 40 years ago was addressed by abortion being legal in New York.

      I carry guilt not for the abortion but for the circumstances that led to it. I don’t believe that being forgiven by the Catholic Church can be any kind of substitute for the forgiveness that I would love to receive from her if I could ever find her.

      Nonetheless, I see the need for safe and legal abortion even if there is really such a thing as “Natural Law” and abortion goes against it. It is a matter for which a judgement for or against it is too close to call and must therefore be left up to the individual.

    • Sample1

      I’m curious what you mean by secular person. Secular just means a citizen who supports the Constitution’s prohibition on basing public policy on religion. Of course there are secular people who are both pro choice and pro life.

      I belong to many secular organizations and they are comprised of Catholics and Muslims as well as faith free people too. I would argue secular is patriotic.

      Mike

    • Bill S

      I suppose I could also say atheist or agnostic instead of secular. What I mean is that you can use reason and logic to argue against abortion.

    • Sample1

      Well again, the term atheist doesn’t tell you much about a person. It’s a pretty short definition. There are atheists who are not good at logic or reason. There are atheists who practice sham medicine. And on, and on. It’s really a term that only exists because theists require it.

      Absolutely. I am sympathetic to all sides of the abortion debate. I used to be 100% pro life but I no longer am. I would be lying, however, if I said I was in favor of eliminating the pro life voice from the equation altogether.

      Mike, faith free.

    • Bill S

      I am pro-choice but that doesn’t mean I think pro-lifers are not also logical and reasonable. They have a different premise on which they base their beliefs about the value of life.

    • Sample1

      Actually I’m less swayed by their logical premises (such as the “life begins at conception” fallacy) than their acknowledgement that morals and emotion have persuasive reasons for being part of this discussion. Though I risk generalizing, in some ways, I would argue, emotions and morals are sometimes not emphasized enough on the pro-choice side. Don’t get me wrong, they can be but I’m trying to be equitable in my critiques of each side because I don’t want either silenced.

      Mike

    • Asemodeus

      “Actually I’m less swayed by their logical premises (such as the “life
      begins at conception” fallacy) than their acknowledgement that morals
      and emotion have persuasive reasons for being part of this discussion.”

      The foundational misunderstanding of this debate is trying to tie in abortion rights with the rights of privacy. Since those rights are not intrinsically written out in the Constitution, just heavily implied. This allows the forced birthers to pretend that this right to privacy either doesn’t exist or isn’t important.

      The debate should actually be around the strongest defense of personal liberty in the Constitution, the 13th Amendment:

      “Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except
      as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly
      convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to
      their jurisdiction.
      Section 2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.”

      If you try to label a fetus a “person”, then you are directly saying that this person can and does force another person into involuntary servitude if that woman doesn’t want the fetus inside of her. That is strictly forbidden by the Constitution.

      Another person in this country cannot force another into serving them against his or her will. Even if that would mean the death of a person. The 13th Amendment makes no exemptions along those lines for obvious reasons.

      The 13th is the ultimate pro-choice argument there is. Especially due to historical justifications. The only reason why slavery lasted that long in American history was that slave women had zero reproductive freedom. Their owners could and often did force them to carry the next generation of slaves for their profit. With the 13th Amendment is gave those slave women the right to their own bodies and how they can use it.

      That’s pro-choice.

    • Bill S

      I’ve never heard that argument before. Interesting.

    • Asemodeus

      It only works when you assume that a fetus is the same as a human person with autonomy and demands. Which is what forced birthers are trying to write into law. It’s ironic, since if they actually succeeded, they would be strengthening the case for abortion via the 13th Amendment.

      The forced birthers would actually be served better by not labeling a fetus as a person, since that brings personal liberty protections for the woman. But we are dealing with clearly irrational people here, so let them shoot themselves in the foot.

    • Bill S

      Forced birthers. Haven’t heard that one either. You have a unique perspective on the issue.

    • Asemodeus

      Baby fetishists also works really well.

    • Sample1

      Speaking of sayings like forced birthers, at the Reason Rally in 2012 on the DC Mall, I went to a talk afterward at the American Atheist convention. It was given by Darrel Ray (author of Sex and God, How Religion Distorts Sexuality).

      He made interesting claims that the official Catholic teachings about sex actually resemble insect behavior rather than mammalian love. It was hard to disagree with him. Anyway, like forced birthers, “insect sex” is another saying I hadn’t heard of.

      Mike

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Bill S:I am glad you hear it now. Asemodeus states many of the arguments that I would bring forward if he not already stated them better than I could.

    • Cynthia Millen

      There is one HUGE problem with your argument, and this is the word “involuntary.” In the vast majority of cases, the woman voluntarily participated in sexual activity through which the natural consequence is pregnancy. The fetus is not the cause of her “servitude.” The woman is. Furthermore, inherent in the definition of slavery is the intent on the part of the slave owner: a purposeful intent to prevent another from moving freely.
      The reason Bill has never heard of this argument is that it would never be offered in the court of law. It would be thrown out by the judge in a New York minute..
      To state that a fetus can intentionally and voluntarily enslave a woman because is forced to carry it is not only legally illogical, it is a ridiculous argument similar to the old Yiddish definition of chutzpah. (A man kills his parents and then pleads for mercy from the court because he is an orphan.) Here, you are having the woman create her own slaver owner. Nope.

    • CowsomeLoneboy

      There’s one HUGE problem with YOUR argument, Ms. Cynthia. If you’re one of the army that professes to speak for god or one who has no trouble substituting your own morality for everyone else’s, you, and not the woman you keep condemning for simply being a human being, are the slave owner. It is your purposeful intent to prevent another from moving freely.

      That you can’t see that is no big surprise, however, as blind spots are endemic in those such as you.

    • NurseTammy

      “the woman you keep condemning for simply being a human being” where the heck is anyone condemning anyone else for being human? Do you mean condemning her for being a sexual being? I don’t condemn that, but PART of humanity is the natural procreation that results our natural relationships. Non procreation is actually really odd when you look at it. I recently visited a former Shaker community…there are virtually no Shakers left…because they were all celibate. To see a literal ghost town because there were no babies…really sobering.

    • CowsomeLoneboy

      You’ve hit the nail pretty much on the head, NurseTammy. The author of this article, Cynthia Millen, repeatedly, in the article itself and then in her replies to other posters, chastises, berates, and condemns other women who have become pregnant and who then have the audacity to elect to have an abortion. Your question, “Do you mean condemning her for being a sexual being?,” is precisely the correct analysis of how this author piously disregards the humanity of those she wishes to scold, blame, judge, and punish. That she is herself a woman nearly makes a mockery of the old expression, “With friends like these, who needs enemies?”

      If every woman were only possessed of an aspirin, so Ms. Mullen seems to want to have it, to place between her knees at all times in the presence of men, then we good, knowing people would not have to hold forth on this issue of abortion. “YOU MUST BE RESPONSIBLE!” she gently tells her fellow women. Perhaps she’s written about this elsewhere, but in everything visible here she is mum about males. And of course it is males that never have to endure a pregnancy and all that goes with it, after they have impregnated the female. Where is her outrage at all the males? They knew that pregnancy was a possibility of intercourse, or should have. Where is her dismissive attitude toward them?

      And before you say that I have absolved anyone of responsibility because I fault Ms. Mullen for harping on responsibility, please trust me that I want everyone to be responsible in their lives and not just about avoiding pregnancy if it is not wanted but also in caring for others in whatever circumstances they find themselves throughout their lives. This means, to me and to many other responsible, thoughtful, and moral adults, supporting women who have chosen not to proceed with a pregnancy. The history of the human race is too overwhelming and too compelling on this issue to conclude that the simple moralistic injunction to just don’t have an abortion is ever going to keep desperate women from doing just that. I will choose the safety and health of the woman every time. Every time. And many good physicians who have committed their lives to helping alleviate the suffering of their fellow humans will do the same. All they ask is that those who do not want what they provide be decent human beings who will follow their own consciences for themselves alone and understand that that requires them to allow all others to do the same or they become not conscientious members of society but rather oppressors in it.

    • NurseTammy

      I re-read Ms Mullen’s comments and to me she simply sounds like a lawyer arguing a point of law (which she is and what she set out to do) for the sake of discussion. I don’t see any berating or condemning.

      While abortion rights advocates like to speak of health and safety, they seem unconcerned with the reality that abortion facilities are often not required to maintain the same standards as all other health care facilities and when lawmakers try to insure that they do, they are accused of “punishing” and trying to “close down” facilities. I have worked in hospitals for 30 years and if were not safe we do need to be closed down. Abortion advocacy is being used as an excuse to allow substandard care and the same folks who say they care about women’s health perpetuate it.

      This is not just an idea or philosophy its a MEDICAL PROCEDURE…a serious one at that.

      My daughter just turned 18 so she is not an adult for medical purposes but the fact that she could have obtained an abortion for YEARS without my knowledge (and put herself in SERIOUS jeopardy) is a serious lapse in our legal system. I see abortion rights folks so eager to underplay the seriousness of these procedures that women dont really understand the possible long terms effects …I have personally had to stick tubes and needles into premature babies whose mothers bodies could not hold them in properly because of repeated abortion procedures.

      Anti abortion folks often use examples of wild outliers (who perhaps do come across as oppressors) and speak of all prolifers as everyone is of that ilk. The average life-minded one of us is engaged in meaningful social discourse, kind to people who have suffered the ravages of abortion and likely very generous to organizations who feed, clothe and tend needy moms. You say above that you just want us to be “decent” and I argue that in the VAST majority of cases we are.

    • Asemodeus

      “While abortion rights advocates like to speak of health and safety, they
      seem unconcerned with the reality that abortion facilities are often
      not required to maintain the same standards as all other health care
      facilities and when lawmakers try to insure that they do, they are
      accused of “punishing” and trying to “close down” facilities. I have
      worked in hospitals for 30 years and if were not safe we do need to be
      closed down. Abortion advocacy is being used as an excuse to allow
      substandard care and the same folks who say they care about women’s
      health perpetuate it.”

      This is a common right wing zombie lie. Abortion clinics have a very good track record of safety.

      http://thinkprogress.org/health/2013/08/21/2502111/republicans-investigation-abortion-clinics/
      “This is not just an idea or philosophy its a MEDICAL PROCEDURE…a serious one at that.”

      One that is already well regulated and controlled.

      “My daughter just turned 18 so she is not an adult for medical purposes
      but the fact that she could have obtained an abortion for YEARS without
      my knowledge (and put herself in SERIOUS jeopardy) is a serious lapse in
      our legal system.”

      What? A 18 year old can be sent over seas and shoot people in the face, legally, and at the same time cannot make his/her own medical choices?

      The rest is gibberish. “Pro-life” is such a misnomer of a term since these self same people don’t care at all about poor children and are often in favor of the death penalty.

    • NurseTammy

      I meant to write that my daughter is “now” an adult for legal/medical purposes…the “not” was a typographical error, sorry.

      Abortion advocates should be as upset by the Gosnell tragedy as we are…are they? I have been exposed to powerful stories of abortion tragedies that I cannot speak of because they were within my nursing practice, so confidentiality prevents me from elaborating, but I will simply state that I dont agree with you.

    • Asemodeus

      Oh lookie, anecdotes. The ironic thing about Gosnell is that his marketing strategy wouldn’t have had been viable if abortions were cheap and readily available. He took advantage of women late in their terms knowing he could bilk them for lots of money.

    • NurseTammy

      What you say here is probably true. It doesn’t however convince me that late term abortions are EVER a good idea as an outpatient procedure.

      The ONLY valid reason to do a late abortion is if the pregnancy is seriously physically endangering the mother. I support women in maintaining these pregnancies if they choose but we cant and shouldn’t make laws assuming everyone is Catholic because they aren’t. In this case the sick mother would already be a patient in a hospital.

      By the time you get LATE into pregnancy, there are other solutions to problems. If the baby is sick, there is neonatal ICU, if the baby is unwanted, there is adoption, if the baby is dying from an untreatable condition, there is palliative care and if all 3 things are true (and I’ve seen this and provided care) then a nurse will rock the baby until it dies a peaceful death.

    • Asemodeus

      “It doesn’t however convince me that late term abortions are EVER a good idea as an outpatient procedure.”

      It’s a good thing then that late term abortions are exceedingly rare and only happen when the life of the mother is at risk.

      http://www.patheos.com/blogs/hallq/2013/01/dreaded-late-term-abortions-are-hardly-any-of-the-abortions-in-the-us/

      You are focusing on a non-issue like a good little anti-choicer.

    • NurseTammy

      in 2013 there were 1.200.000 abortions in the US and 2% of those were after 21 weeks which means that 24,000 babies were aborted after 21 weeks. I don’t wish that anyone ever got so sick in pregnancy that their pregnancy would have to end, but it does happen to some people. THere is no stat that I know of which tells which of these 24,000 were to save the moms life and which were not. Even if half of them were for that reason, it would still leave 12,000.

      I can’t make you see 12,000 dead babies as a “lot” if you dont define it that way, but to me 12,000 21+ weekers is a lot of death.

      Call me names and make fun of my arguments if you wish, my argument stands.

    • Cynthia Millen

      Thank you.

    • CowsomeLoneboy

      I’m both a nurse and a lawyer. As a nurse, you should know better than to make unprincipled statements about abortion facilities and providers: “While abortion rights advocates like to speak of health and safety, they
      seem unconcerned with the reality that abortion facilities are often
      not required to maintain the same standards as all other health care
      facilities and when lawmakers try to insure that they do, they are
      accused of ‘punishing’ and trying to ‘close down’ facilities.”. Your comment would imply to the uninformed that abortion clinics are not subject to state health department standards and regulations, but of course that is false, because they must abide by the same standards of safety and health as similar facilities, such as any other doctor’s office where procedures are performed. The great majority of providers are in compliance with all such laws and regulations.

      Again, as a nurse you ought to know the difference between what is medically appropriate and what bears no true relationship to medical practice but instead has some ulterior and unrelated motivation. The laws that you say are being enacted to “maintain the same standards as all other health care facilities” do nothing of the sort and as a health care professional I’d think you’d be ashamed to admit publicly on this forum that you don’t understand that. Why is it that ACOG and state medical societies have uniformly rejected such laws as unneeded and unwise? Why does an abortion clinic, with safety records that are better than most facilities that perform outpatient procedures with similar complexity and risk such as colonoscopies, oral and maxillofacial surgeries, cosmetic surgeries and the like, require these restrictive and burdensome regulations when those facilities performing these procedures with similar risks do not? You say it is not targeting abortion facilities but the groups that hatched the plans to get these laws enacted, offering the model legislation to pass from state to state, clearly had exactly that motive in mind. That is why in the reporting on this kind of legislation an acronym, TRAP–targeted regulation of abortion providers, has not been challenged as a mischaracterization. It is why if you had sat in the federal district court in Wisconsin, as I recently did, and listened to the experts provided by the state in their arguments trying to justify this kind of legislation, you would know despite months and months for the state attorneys to try to find competent experts who could support the legislation, the best their “experts” could muster was demonstrably inaccurate interpretations of studies that the judge, no doctor himself, had to finally jump in during the testimony and ask the “expert” if he really wanted to go on record with something so patently ridiculous.

      As a parent of two (now grown) daughters I understand your discomfort with laws that allow minors to go for procedures without parental knowledge. However, if you haven’t already, you should do some reading about how many times a father is responsible for his daughter’s pregnancy, often with the complicity of the mother, and then ask yourself why a girl placed in such a horrible situation should be required to have monsters give consent for a procedure they created the need for. Most of these laws regarding minors require some kind of guardian ad litem for the procedure to proceed anyway, so it is not as though no adults are taking responsibility.

      If you had been a clinic escort as I have, you would see how decent so many of the “pro-life” crowd can be. They scream at frightened young women, often young women who have no intention of getting an abortion but are coming to the clinic for other kinds of care. I’ve seen these folks–in the name of their “god’ and “Jesus,” with rosaries and crucifixes–shout obscenities and extremely hurtful epithets at clinic patients and workers. I had a good Irish Catholic family, with mom, dad, and 5 kids ranging in age from about 3 to about 15, stand behind me and my family at a bus stop and spit on us and spew a non-stop stream of vulgarity at us because we were wearing pro-choice T shirts.

      Look, I realize there are many conscientious people in the “pro-life” movement with good intentions and respectful behavior. My point about decency, though, is not about the kind of behavior I described in the preceding paragraph, but about the greater decency required of a functioning civil society where you don’t try to impose your beliefs and values on others who themselves are moral, decent human beings who believe differently from you. When so great a constituency in the society consistently demonstrates over a long period of time that their beliefs are held across the spectrum of religions and moral structures, cultures and subcultures, and all segments of that society, decency requires that you give those people the right to believe and act as they see right, just as you claim the same thing for yourself.

    • Nurse Tammy

      As for your first point. I cannot properly argue my side without saying things Im simply not liberty to share. You are welcome to disagree with me and our forum had given you fair space and opportunity to speak your mind about it.

      Point #2. Parental consent. Taking away my parental rights because some guy down the street is a rapist and a child abuser is wrong. Young ladies in that situation need refuge and the parents need to be arrested, but that is a criminal issue and limiting my parents rights (and creating absurdly inconsistent laws “you cant have your ears pierced but you CAN have an abortion!”) because other people are criminals is wrong and doesn’t even deal with the crime.

      POint 3 If you want to know the truth, I don’t publicly use the phrase “prolife” to describe myself because of some of the overreactions I have seen. I describe myself as a person who “does not advocate liberal abortion practices to solve problems”. In reality, there is lunatic fringe on both sides of this argument that are an embarrassment to the normal people in the middle trying to find reasonable solutions.

      What I see in my Nursing practice is pregnant women who are trying to figure out what to do after a diagnosis of a condition incompatible with life (in their baby) and they are very often given a very hard sell to abort even if doing so is inconsistent with their values. MDs will often call the baby “it” once the dx is made and pressure is applied to them without palliative care options being given. If “choice” is the goal, why the hard sell to abort?

    • CowsomeLoneboy

      Using your numbering system, as to Point #1: What I stated regarded matters of public policy and state laws and regulations. How you cannot be at liberty to discuss anything related to those topics is a mystery to me. And if you’re going to be coy and use patient confidentiality as a smoke screen to insinuate that you know horrible things that you cannot discuss because of your obligations as a nurse, we both know that is not the case. Doctors and nurses discuss patient situations all the time in public and they violate no oaths, codes, laws, or stipulations when doing so as long as they omit any patient-identifying information. If you have verifiable evidence that abortion clinics are not in large part observing health laws and codes you should be able to cite sources that can corroborate that. Again, where is your sense of principle when it comes to alleging things for which you offer no proof? And more to the point, why won’t you discuss the policy matters that are strictly in the public domain and have no risk of breaching any patient confidentiality?

      As to Point #2: You have such pat answers for so many things. There are many situations that are not so neat and tidy as you would have them be. Girls may be faced with having to bear the blame for breaking up their family in addition to having to deal with deciding on abortion. The incidence of girls using the minor without parental consent provisions is small. And the “criminal” angle you talk about is only one reason that affording girls the opportunity to get an abortion without parental involvement makes for good personal and societal policy. Finally, think about it: if parents have built a good foundation with their daughters, do you think that such a daughter would not want to seek the counsel and support of the parents in a decision such as this?

      I imagine there are some doctors who encourage women to abort fetuses without chances for viability more thoughtlessly and with less empathy than would be good medical practice, let alone just plain human decency. Those physicians I’ve dealt with, and there are many, who would be in a position to be offering counsel regarding terminating a pregnancy are almost all extremely compassionate and interested only in helping the woman make a decision that she believes right for her. If anything, they practice a philosophy of encouraging the woman to go slow and be certain of her choice. I’ve not witnessed a “hard sell to abort.” I have witnessed a hard sell at shaming women who want to talk about abortion as an option, however.

      What you fail to address here again is the most important question I raise: despite the fact that you say you do not identify yourself as pro-life, you have written enough to make it clear that you believe abortion should be restricted and wish to make all women subject to a constricted right to abortion that you favor, but I asked what gives you the right to substitute your morality for theirs? You cannot claim to be in the middle trying to find reasonable solutions unless you address that question head on.

    • Asemodeus

      “There is one HUGE problem with your argument, and this is the word
      “involuntary.” In the vast majority of cases, the woman voluntarily
      participated in sexual activity through which the natural consequence is
      pregnancy.”

      Which doesn’t change the argument that if you label a fetus a person you are forcing involuntary servitude on a woman that doesn’t want it in her. That’s a 13th Amendment violation.

      The actual reason why this argument has not been used in a court of law is that a fetus has never been labeled a person. I am simply using the forced birthers own argument against them in terms of personhood and what that would actually imply. Involuntary servitude.

    • Cynthia Millen

      Yes, a fetus HAS been labeled a person for purposes of aggravated homicide cases (the main point of my article). That is the hypocrisy. The fetus is a person if the mother wants him/her and the fetus is killed, but it is not a person if the mother does not want him/her and obtains an abortion.
      Logic begs the question: Can something be alive for one set of circumstances and the same thing NOT be alive for another set of circumstances. Either it is alive or it is not; either it is a person or it is not.
      By labeling a fetus a person, you are not forcing anything on anyone. Rather a consequence (a fetus) has occurred as a result of an action (sexual intercourse). What is the nature of that consequence and who is responsible for it? That is how I see it.
      I think that your point of view portrays women as quite stupid and helpless if you wish to portray a fetus as a slave owner forcing a woman into servitude. Again, no one is forcing a woman to get pregnant.
      With all due respect, I think this is where we must just disagree. I will always submit that all life is worth protecting, no matter what. And I view a women’s ability to carry a fetus as a gift and never a burden, even if the fetus was not wanted. The value of a life is much greater.

    • Asemodeus

      “Yes, a fetus HAS been labeled a person for purposes of aggravated homicide cases (the main point of my article).”

      But not labeled as a person with due process rights and treated the same as a actual person. That hasn’t happened yet.

      “The fetus is a person if the mother wants him/her and the fetus is
      killed, but it is not a person if the mother does not want him/her and
      obtains an abortion.”

      Which isn’t a argument against abortion. Just semantics.

      “Logic begs the question: Can something be alive for one set of
      circumstances and the same thing NOT be alive for another set of
      circumstances.”

      Logic begs the question as to why we are willing to give a clump of cells the same legal definitions as a actual alive human being with autonomy and brain functions.

      “By labeling a fetus a person, you are not forcing anything on anyone.
      Rather a consequence (a fetus) has occurred as a result of an action
      (sexual intercourse).”

      Nope, slut shaming doesn’t trump 13th Amendment protections.

      “I think that your point of view portrays women as quite stupid and
      helpless if you wish to portray a fetus as a slave owner forcing a woman
      into servitude.”

      I never implied that. I just pointed out the historical reality that the 13th Amendment expanded reproductive freedoms to women whom previous never had any. That’s pro-choice ideology written in the Constitution.

      “Again, no one is forcing a woman to get pregnant.”

      And you cannot force said women into serving another person against her will.

      “With all due respect, I think this is where we must just disagree. I
      will always submit that all life is worth protecting, no matter what.”

      That’s BS and you know it. You would run into a whole series of human rights violations if you were consistent in that worldview.

      “And I view a women’s ability to carry a fetus as a gift and never a burden, even if the fetus was not wanted.”

      Thankfully you are not in a position to make those decisions for other human beings.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      See above

    • ME

      Except, the baby has not forced servitude of the mother, since it was the mother’s voluntary (in 99% of cases) actions, that resulted in the conception of the child in the first place. So what you guys are really saying, is that adults should not have to hold any responsibilities to society for the actions they themselves choose in their life.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      See my previous post (or later post, things get mixed up whenthey are not posted time wise but under “reply”}
      Voluntary in 99% of the cases Is nonsense. Even if it answers a different post it applies here as well. I will repeat it here:

      Not realistic because it overlooks the sexual drives that is part of our nature. When we are overwhelmed by our primitive instincts for a moment, abstinence, preventive measures and caution are going out of the window. It is much like an addiction and very hard to resist. Should a woman be put into a situation that she must live by the consequences for the rest of her life because an irresistible primal urge caused by the actions of an even more aroused male? (I deliberately leave out, rape
      or abandonment cases and address this to sex between consenting adults only). Not every one can. That is not a flaw of character but a result of our natural instincts and drives, which are very hard to ignore.

      An autonomous woman is involved, who must live the rest of her life with her decision. We must not make that decision for her. If your religion deems it a sin, so be it, but is it not your responsibility.

    • Asemodeus

      Don’t respond to ME, he is just one of my regularly scheduled stalkers.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Thanks for the tip,

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      As usual you are correct again

    • Bill S

      Logic and reason has to trump emotion and morals (whose morals) when dealing with a controversial issue like abortion.

    • Sample1

      Emotion can be used, powerfully at times, to persuade people into action but I agree with you for one simple reason:

      Emotions can never add or subtract truth to or from a claim.

      Thanks for your thoughts,

      Mike

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      That’t why avoid the label “atheism” like the plague. It has so much bagage as well such as immoral, sacriligious etc,
      I call myself an unbeliever. Ido not believe in anything supernatural: god, ghost astronomy, faith healing, UFO aliens, Phsychic phenomina etc etc.

      I agree with you second paragraph as well. But what I object to is that one side wants to force their beliefs upon the opositionCrossing the line of State/Church separation

    • Sample1

      Thanks Bill. Yes, that’s why I’m a member of the FFRF.

      Mike

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Bill: You probably mean Secular Humanist:
      “humanism, with regard in particular to the belief that humanity is capable of morality and self-fulfillment without belief in God.”
      (Wikipedia, dictionary)

    • Bill S

      Yes. Secular humanist works. Your website doesn’t work on an iPhone. I will check it out on my laptop.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Secular humanist, I think Bill meant.

    • NurseTammy

      Bill, I work in end-of-life care mostly with (very) sick neonates but I do have experience in adult end-of-life care. Please know that end of life care that includes a natural (not rushed or forced) death can be an instrument of great Grace…one that might allow you to see amazing value in life itself.

      Im sorry that despair has led you to a place where life (even your own) isnt something of value to you. I respect that you don’t believe in God, but I hope you allow for the possibility that you might learn something along the rest of the life you have to live.

    • Bill S

      Thank you.

      When I was finally convinced by atheists that there are no gods, angels, demons, saints, afterlife, soul, etc. I felt liberated. But now I often say darn it.

    • NurseTammy

      My son told me that he felt a great sense of loss when he became an atheist – among his losses were the whole idea that the most downtrodden person in the world was “loved by God”. He felt sad that in fact this person ISNT loved. He went off on a path through living in atheist communes to living with Sufis and he now believes again that the Divine does exist, but he isn’t yet sure what the means to him. I trust that God has my son in the palm of His hand and his journey is his and I love and support him in it.

    • Bill S

      It has been the greatest loss of my life but I accept it as the real truth. My wife goes down at healing masses and gets mad when I attribute it to hypnotic suggestion. God is as real to her as he is imaginary to me. That is a big problem for us. I pray the rosary with her every morning and go to mass with her every week as a sign of respect for her beliefs which I no longer share. Funny thing is that it was I that led her back to the faith and then I lost mine. Alas.

    • NurseTammy

      I respect that you are where you are. I wont tell you that you are wrong, but would encourage you (rather than seeing this as “the real truth”) is to say “this is where I am right now”. Life is an endless process of evolutions and changes …all of them important. If there is a God, He knows how to speak to you. FOr my kids (1 still confirmed atheist and the other I spoke of)…my daily prayer is “Dear God, speak to them in a language they will understand and give them the courage and wisdom to respond when they hear You”.

    • Bill S

      That works for me.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Prayer doesn’t work, respectable research has been done on that subject. Look it up. My blog, second page on my website, has a lot you would be interested in. There are many going back more that a year, discussions many of the questions you find here.

    • Bill S

      I’ll check it out in a bit.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Hope you do, I went through a similar path that you did and the website is the result. Tell me if it helped.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Don’t feel that way. You didn’t lose! you gained profound insight that did liberated you. I get amused when people cannot see the fantasy they are living.

    • Bill S

      You’re right. It is good not to live in a fantasy. How good it would be were the fantasy true. But it’s not and there is nothing we can do about it.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Yes you can! Live a full life when you can and enjoy being aware everyday!

    • ME

      Its amazing how we think for a time that if there is no God and we are free to set our own rules, how liberated we think we are. Eventually most of us come to realize how important it is to have a set of rules defining the structure of society so that we need not live in anarchy. The rules of the Natural law fit so much better than any of us fallible humans can come up with, and therefore, when we follow the law God has written on our hearts, we know there is justice and mercy in those rules, and they give us a sense of peace. We may not always be “happy” following those rules, but in the end, we know that if we follow those rules, we can be assured of freedoms. If everyone were to follow those rules, we wouldn’t have to worry about people like Hitler or Stalin coming along, and enforcing their arbitrary rules and slaughtering millions of people because they believe one thing, that most of society does not believe. I hope you can eventually find your way back to belief in God, so that you can someday begin to feel God’s love and mercy.

    • Bill S

      Other than the Church being wrong on most of the key controversial issues, it is good to believe most of what you believe. I just happen to think that none of it is true.

    • ME

      Bill, thank you for your reply everyone outside the church has some issues with what the church teaches. It is natural to question the teachings but millions throughout history have researched those issues and found what the church says to be true and have chose to conform their lives to those truths. In doing so, people become liberated in their lives in ways that are often unimaginable. One I can think of that might be of interest to you is GK Chesterton. You seem to approach your beliefs from am intellectual perspective, as did he. You may wish to consider adding his book “Eugenics and Other Evils” to your reading list. He saw all the problems with abortion and Eugenics in 1912 when he wrote the book, and we are now seeing the “fruits” of tees evils in our society today.

    • Bill S

      A lot of people recommend Chesterton to me. Sooner or later, I will check him out.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Bill, don’t just check out the recommended books which tend to confirm their point of view. Check out other religions as well. My website http://www.origin-of-religion.com might help. Let me know if it does.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Research outside christianity as well please and the teachings of other religions. O jeah, you like to ignore those.

    • Sample1

      …millions have found what the church says to be true

      Argumentum ad populum.

      Mike

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      The rules of the Natural law fit so much better than any of us fallible humans can come up with” Who’s natural laws? The bible’s? Please read my previous posts.
      By the way it is amazing that people believe in God, There are over 4000 gods around all claiming to be the only correct one. The “god” you believe in is an accident of your birth and /or environment you are living in. If you were born in a Hindu environment you be believing in reincarnation/.

      The bible’s god love and mercy? Read NJumbers 31 and god’s treatment of the Medianites.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      I became a nonbeliever ( I do not use the word Atheist, because to many it means not only godless, but immoral and sacrilegious), because, after being brought up in a strict church, because of the many contradictions and certainly not out of despair, I came to realize that there is no supernatural, whether it be God, ghosts, UFOs, Horus, Zeus, belief in astrology or prophesies and so on and on. Bill, I can understand why you said “I often say darn it” because the idea that if you can live forever is very attractive. (don’t forget the Hell-part though). Of the “live forever” fantasies I like “reincarnation” better. You would believe in that one if you were born in a Hindu environment. Feel liberated and enjoy, having won the universe’s lottery, the only chance you will get to be aware, even if it is only for a relative short time. :-)

    • Bill S

      I say “darn it” because the sales pitch that draws people to particularly Catholicism and also other religions would be awesome if it were true but it isn’t.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      HELL ain’t awsome!

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      O my, where do I start.The historic view of Soul or spirtit (latin for breath) is that the baby was not human until the first breath (spirit) entered the baby and that the Spirit (last breath) left the body at death to join the great spirit (the atmosphere). God “breathed” in Adams nose to make him alive (Genesis). Later, Spirit became Soul, Holy spirit and a lot more. God did not create the baby, a sperm and an egg did, thanks to evolution. As far as “murder” is concerned, society determines the rules, not the Bible or any other ancient historical book. We kill all the time, capital punishment, wars, etc. Society determines what is acceptable and I disagree with some of those, but we can change them. Accepting religious morals is very dangerous. Whether the bible’s, God ordering Moses to kill the medianites (Numbers 31,which is genocide) or Sharia Law. Secular Society can do a better job because we can correct these morals (laws) when needed while religious one are written in stone

      “By your reasoning, it would be perfectly acceptable to kill a newborn up to about 2 months of age or even older.”
      There is no reason that you can conclude that by Bill S postings. That is just a conclusion you like to draw.

      ” at the other end” I am very familiar with that one. My mother died of altzheimers, In the end, brain dead with all bodily functions assisted, but a healthy heart When that body got a treatable virus, the family decided no treatment and she died. We are at peace with that decision.

      “Asking a woman to carry a baby for nine months and then give him/her up for adoption is far less of a burden than killing a life whom others could know and love and who could impact the world in unimaginable ways.”

      Sound great, but depends on many things, first many pregnancies have complications. Secondly it might affect the woman’s life forever, not only her career. Thirdly, assuming that the adopting parent are a forever loving couple which do not divorce, have enough money to give the child the best education is a gamble. Always loving parents, no child abuse, is a bit much to ask . “impact the world in unimaginable ways” is correct but it goes both ways, Einstein or Hitler

    • NurseTammy

      “To force her to carry and bear a child she doesn’t want is also a terrible thing to do. ” Our culture makes a grievous error when we measure anyone’s value based on “want”. “Want” has become its own god to us where we justify anything (including death and other serious things) based on “want”. Want can be momentary, vacillating and capricious. The baby in her already exists…the challenge would better be framed in helping her make prudent decisions for what comes next. In the US, there are MANY people waiting for an infant to adopt, even special needs infants.

      “You don’t miss what you never had.” I very much disagree with that. I miss a lot of things I never had

      “A fetus never experienced anything more than life in the womb.” Which is all the more reason for taking it very seriously that this already-existing being hasn’t had a chance to experience some of the cool stuff that life has to offer. I once read an essay by an atheist who proposed that people who DONT believe in the afterlife should reconsider their prochoice stance – if this is, in fact, the only existence this small being will ever have and they are fully wiped away at death, shouldn’t we take that death very seriously?

    • Bill S

      I can be convinced by your arguments never to support anyone I am responsible for in any decision to have an abortion. What you can’t convince me to do is try to prevent someone over whom I have no responsibility from having one.

    • NurseTammy

      For me, your use of the word “prevent” is critical. I realize I deviate form the standard Catholic argument but don’t think that a culture where abortion is truly rare will result from strict laws (preventing people from aborting) legal prohibition of anything from abortion to drugs to alcohol just pushes it underground. Abortion being truly rare will only result from better options being available to women.

      In my city we have NUMEROUS homes for women in crisis and we have palliative care for babies who are diagnosed with life limiting conditions…we lovingly offer options. We don’t have any abortion clinics in our city and (from what I know but I dont know everything) women are NOT showing up in our ED having suffered back alley procedures.

      Offering women better options than abortion will cost money…state medicaid for prenatal care, neonatology for the sick ones, social support for the mom during and after pregnancy. We will all need to put our money where our mouths are but again in my city, we have done that.

    • Bill S

      “Abortion being truly rare will only result from better options being available to women.”

      That I think we can all agree on. The money is a problem.

    • Cynthia Millen

      No again.
      We have universally available birth control (and I won’t go off on a tangent about the dangers of that.)
      We have all sorts of sex education.
      We all have the ability (in theory) to say no.
      We can spend many more millions on all of it, and it won’t change a thing.
      What will truly reduce abortion is a change of the view of life: that is is all worthy of saving, that women are not sex objects to be used for the pleasure of others, that each one of us is sacred and worthy of protection and love.

      That will reduce abortion.
      P.S. Prayed for you at Mass this morning, Bill. Thanks for sharing all of your views and writings here. While I appreciate that you are not a believer, I must share with you that when I ask Jesus for his grace, the feeling is the most wonderful feeling in the world, and I would be remiss and selfish if I did not share that with you. He can do anything, if we only ask Him.
      Take care.

    • Bill S

      “What will truly reduce abortion is a change of the view of life.”

      That is true. As an atheist, my view of life is different from yours. You probably know the atheist view of life. It has no value, meaning or purpose. It is up to us to give our lives those things.

    • Sample1

      There is no atheist view of life. There is only the definition of what an atheist is: a person who doesn’t believe in gods. From there every atheist has their own philosophy about life, meaning and purpose. Some have goofy ideas while others take the methodological naturalist approach.

      I do agree with you that it is up to us to give our life meaning rather than, for example, be told what it means by others.

      Mike

    • Bill S

      Yes. I said as an atheist, my view of life is … But I didn’t mean to imply that there is one representative view of life that applies to all atheists (other than not believing in gods, angels, demons, etc. ).

    • Sample1

      Fair enough.

      Mike

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      “What will truly reduce abortion is a change of the view of life.”. True, but like abstinence, not realistic because it overlooks the sexual drives that is part of our nature. When we are overwhelmed by our primitive instincts for a moment, abstinence, preventive measures and caution are going out of the window. It is much like an addiction and very hard to resist. Should a woman be put into a situation that she must live by the consequences for the rest of her life because an irresistible primal urge caused by the actions of an even more aroused male? (I deliberately leave out, rape or abandonment cases and address this to sex between consenting adults only). Not every one can. That is not a flaw of character but a result of our natural instincts and drives, which are very hard to ignore.

      An autonomous woman is involved, who must live the rest of her life with her decision. We must not make that decision for her. If your religion deems it a sin, so be it, but is it not your responsibility.

    • Sample1

      most wonderful feeling in the world

      This superlative is condescending. I am faith free, not autistic, and can certainly take in the wonder of the stars, deep time, or even shed tears over a poem among countless other experiences.

      The faithful do not hold the copyright to feelings or the numinous but sure act as if they do.

      Mike

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  • BillinJax

    The reason we have a rapidly evolving secular society is that currently a major
    portion of our citizens have been raised in homes without a mother and father
    who have or planned to be married to each other for life and were mostly
    educated in schools where God and prayer had been excluded from the curriculum.
    When family life where children were welcomed as a gift from God by two god
    fearing adult parents, one working and the other at home, and not seen as an
    accidental by-product of sheer physical passion there was a good chance for
    them to become responsible members of society. Unfortunately modern living, led
    by the uncontrolled lust in the hearts of mankind and liberalism’s always
    enticing boast of freeing mankind from the bonds of religious scruples, in the
    last century handed evil the lethal weapons to destroy families.

    The beauty and wonder of the Conception of a child in the
    womb of its mother was chosen as a target at the very beginning of socialism
    and its liberal agenda to accomplish the “fundamental transformation of America”
    way before the current regime and their announced messiah appeared on the
    national scene. The cry from the desert of dome was that the world God had made
    for us was in grave danger of Over Population. We had to save the earth from
    being over run with new life? The pictures accompanying every deceitful article
    echoing that cry were not of cute toddlers in their mother’s arms or on happy
    playgrounds or in pleasant classrooms learning of the beauty of God’s good
    earth. No, we were shown starving skin and bone figures in poor countries of Africa
    and Asia where Christian missionaries were trying to
    bring the truth of the gospels to the people. Ironically this deceitful
    campaign gained support at a time when tens of millions of innocent humans all
    over the world had just been ritually slaughtered by godless dictators and
    imperial rulers before, during and after World War II.

    Contraception in all its forms, as part of the selfish
    passion for freedom from individual responsibility, was hailed as a redeeming
    blessing for not only married couples who wished not to have the obligation of
    raising a family but also to any and all who desired to be romantically
    involved prior to or in lieu of marriage. The personal benefits and blessing of
    conjugal love which God had reserved for married couples to have families and
    procreate were transformed and disguised as simply human rights suddenly
    ordained and made available by the secular progressives to everyone without
    having to pledge eternal companionship or bare the obligations of parenthood.
    Giving those with a taste for such freedom, the media offered public cover by
    naming their cause a Sexual Revolution. Driven by the desire to avoid personal
    responsibility at any price¸ rejecting any mention of chastity, this was the harbinger of societal
    perversion as well as the precursor and foundation for what eventually became
    our own national plague, Abortion.

    One might easily define the demise of American family life by its two most
    revealing concepts, contraception and abortion. One opposed the creative nature
    God granted to the union of a man and a woman joined in Holy Matrimony and the
    other sought to challenge the very involvement of God in the equation. Both
    have at the center of its premise the denial that man is the product of the
    goodness and abundance of God’s love and that man was not made in His image and
    likeness. Therefore, there is no such thing as procreation and God had no
    purposeful design for the ability of mankind to reproduce.

    Liberalism, like Humanism, stops short of denying the existence of God least they lose the
    basis for the goodness of man which provides them some footing to espouse
    their false philosophy of life. This is the same as the satanic Temptation of
    Christ when he was asked to forsake his divine nature and simply be human
    and follow the commands of one who would provide him with all he would
    ever need. The lord of lies has hope; hope that we do not recognize him among
    those who have unknowingly followed him and wish to control us.

    The world witnessed recently the liberal dominated democratic national convention purposely attempting to remove all mention of God from their platform to proudly but foolishly proclaim what could be called a doctrine of the cultural of death. However, they reasoned prior to the
    election was not good timing for exposing the under belly of their agenda and
    leaders hastily overruled the mobs there present shouting for its approval.

    When in God’s name is the Body of Christ going to publicly admit
    we have many elitists in our fold as politicians, entertainers, educators, or
    media reporters who are giving aid and comfort to the evil enemies of our
    faith, identify them and officially notify them they can not be in communion
    with us and continue to cooperate in the erosion of our values and doctrines?
    Hopefully our new Pope Francis, with the fervent prayers of the faithful, can
    turn the tide of tyranny in the Church and if need be become a smaller but holier flock for him to shepherd.

  • BillinJax

    A message for men of Faith.
    It would be wonderful if all Catholics, especially the men,
    came to their senses and realized who and what they are once and for all.

    We are free men in a free society, at least for now, but we
    have lost our bearings listening to those mortals of corrupted ideology
    manipulating our understanding of ourselves.

    It is imperative for our families and nation that we get hold of our being in order to
    think, do, and say what is necessary to salvage the two things we all possess
    that are of any real importance.

    We have our life and our faith.

    I can say for myself that as a sane married Catholic
    American male equipped with proper knowledge of the faith that I must
    personally bear responsibility for what I think, do, and say each day of my
    life and there is a simple prayer we should say each day which I hope we all
    know that goes along with that understanding. It must be clear to all of us, as
    it is to me; we live and have accepted life under two sets of laws. The laws of
    our government as wisely ordained by the Declaration of Independence which guided
    the founders to set our nation on the firm foundation of our national
    Constitution providing us with religious freedom. That declaration with its
    constitution gave us the right and ability to live the life of faith which we
    as Christians acknowledge as the essence of our very existence.

    Hence, it is up to me and my free will graciously given by
    God to determine what I make of my life and how it may influence the world in
    which we live and in reality the only two people on earth who have absolute
    power to influence or control what I think, do, or say are the Pope and my
    loving wife. This is the line in the sand where Catholic men of faith must make
    their stand.

  • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

    Three days ago Cynthia stated “but I wanted to refer to studies that are not typically pro-life friendly and would give conservative statistics”.
    Of course you do, everybody “quotes” stats that favor their position. i am glad you admit that you do that. Would you call all statistics that contradict yours “pro-life friendly”, even if they are neutral? I suspect so

    PS Your quote:”Abortion sky rocketed when it first became legal” Any statistics about the drop in illegal abortions causing death and irreparable damage?

    PS2: Yes legal abortion IS seen as a “cure-all” for illegal abortion by non-medical butchers and coat hanger experts.

    • Cynthia Millen

      Hi all
      It is confusing where to reply so this is for Ben. Thank you for all of the thought-provoking replies.
      First, the Guttmacher Institute is a pro-choice organization. When I stayed that their statistics are conservative I meant that they are in the low side. They would represent the lower rates of confirmed abortions that actually looks more favorable for the pro-choice side. Many clinics do not report and do not report regularly to their respective state agencies because there is no national reporting center (like an American Red Cross or national cancer institute) for data collection. Also states have different requirements for reporting, health standards, medical requirements for abortion.
      Ben, I will disagree with you about abstinence in theory. Just like overheating or drinking, we know that the ideal is not to do it, but we do it anyway and receive the consequences (hangover, weight gain, etc). Men and women get carried away but that should not lower out standard. We should first and foremost refrain from sex unless we are ready to have a baby with that person in a committed lifestyle. That is the Church’s teaching and it truly is the best wY for all sorts of physical and emotional reasons. Others may not agree and therefore they should practice some sort of preventative measure. In marriage children can be successfully spaced through natural family planning. It is 99% successful if done correctly and has zero side effects.
      Yes humans have urges but I submit that we all have reason unlike animals that only follow instinct. We can use our reason to control our urges. I thinks it’s best to keep our standards high, allowing of course for human error, for which we should provide non-judgmental and compassionate help (which the Church does on many levels. ) and men of course are just as responsible. I am sorry I did not make that clear earlier but I was focusing more on the fetus.
      Nowhere in my writing do I denigrate women. I truly hope I have represented the Church’s teachings correctly because I truly believe in and accept them and submit that they ultimately are one the best interest of all persons, born and pre-born.

    • Cynthia Millen

      Sorry for the typos

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Don’t worry about typos or spelling mistakes, I make them all the time. I think much faster than I can type and since I read phrases and sentences in stead of single words I often don’ spot them when I read my post over before submitting

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      I apologize for misunderstanding the source of the statistics, however that does not invalidate my PS and PS2 and You didn’t comment on that.
      As far as abstinence is concerned you disagree “in theory” ,that fine but I was talking about reality. The Church’s teachings are not very practical (and even discourages or forbids the use of condoms) and certainly isn’t “best for all sorts of physical and emotional reasons”. When one fails (“allowing of course for human error”), the guilt feelings created by the church can be devastating and sometimes lead to suicide.

      Lets be realistic: Unwanted pregnancies, are going to happen, no matter how high a standard is set by the church and forbidding abortion only encourages the resurgence of illegal abortions (Coat hangers anyone?). I don’t object the church to discourage abortions but teaching impractical abstinence and discourage the use of condoms is NOT “in the best interest of ALL persons.”

      In marriage children can be successfully spaced through natural family planning. It is 99% successful” is also dreaming in spades and does have “side effects”: unwanted pregnancy! I know quite a few people in the church I grew up in, that used this method, who ended up with failures. (you can “count” on that.)

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Cynthia, you are such a nice person. Even when you disagree you are careful not to be offensive or insulting as so many posters are. I admire your idealism but I wish you would be more realistic. You didn’t acknowledge that legal abortions prevented many dangerous illegal abortions and that the “solutions” you mention such as abstention, adoption, and sex only for procreation in a fully committed couple , etc. although correct, are not practical solutions. Face reality please. Abortions are going to happen and will be driven underground with much more dire consequences than with legal abortions. Prohibition never works, whether it is for alcohol or prostitution either. You can want to have people be strong enough to avoid these societal problem through character and religion, but these problems will always be with us. Better to regulate and control than simply stating we should convince people not to do it. Be practical please, not idealistic. I am waiting for your comments on this post.

    • Cynthia Millen

      Ben– thank you. You too are very kind. I think it would be great to sit face to face–perhaps over a beer!–to discuss these things. I deeply appreciate that you discuss everything so respectfully and with reasons for your arguments and do not attack personally.
      Thank you.

    • http://www.origin-of-religion.com Ben Andrews

      Cynthia: Pardon me for being persistent but I find that whenever I get into discussions and make what I regard as a valuable point, dead silence on the subject itself is telling. Nice post, but it tells me (and other readers) nothing. If am wrong, tell me so with the reasons why you think so. If you agree, please acknowledge. I am very frustrated when I get unsubstantiated disagreements or deadly silences as a reaction to many of my posts. I’ll try again:

      Abortions are going to happen and will be driven underground with much more dire consequences than with legal abortions. Prohibition never works, whether it is for alcohol or prostitution either. You can want to have people be strong enough to avoid these societal problem through character and religion, but these problems will always be with us. Better to regulate and control than simply stating we should convince people not to do it. Be practical please, not idealistic.

      I am waiting for your comments.

    • Cynthia Millen

      Sorry Ben
      Just finished our sons wedding and am on the road. Will answer more when I at a computer.
      Thanks
      C

  • Stilbelieve

    Can a person be sued/charged with a crime for the death of a pregnant woman’s unborn child if the unborn child was killed in a car accident that the person caused while the pregnant woman was on her way to PPH to have an abortion in Ohio?