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Abortion: Finding the Moral Balance

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The Supreme Court is about to become imbalanced in a way that will most likely favor the government’s increasing interference with our personal lives. I could of course be wrong, but I sincerely doubt it. It’s not that I don’t think Samuel Alito isn’t a qualified candidate – I do. He’s extremely qualified, one might even say he has been groomed for the position. But unlike Justice Roberts, Alito isn’t a letter-of-the-law kind of guy: he’s a dissenter and his court rulings speak volumes to me.

I am appalled, but not surprised that the Democrats aren’t putting up more of a fight over this guy, but the sad truth is we are a country in transition, without direction and without a real sense of leadership. Democrats are fumbling all over themselves to find a course to take, and the core conservatives are only listening to an extreme margin of society.

What a poor time to test our laws.

This week marks the 33rd anniversary of the landmark Roe vs. Wade legal decision, a case more about privacy than abortion, but which set in motion what has been a unique time in our nation’s history, where women have had an actual say in their reproductive paths. Of course, since that time we have been a divided country on the issue of abortion. Regardless of the media hype, you don’t have to be a religious fanatic to oppose abortion and you don’t have to be a bleeding heart liberal to support reproductive rights. You can come from any and every walk of life and arrive at diametrically opposed views on this frought matter.

It’s an issue of life for certain, but more specifically, I think it is an issue of the quality of life over quantity.

For as long as women have been able to conceive, women have sought control over their reproduction, and not just out of convenience. Before modern times, having too many children might have meant life or death to a woman or her other children. Whether the issue was a limit on the resources of food and shelter or her personal health, sometimes it just wasn’t possible to have another child. That didn’t mean she wasn’t forced to acquiesce to the desires of man/men). Essentially, for some women, having control over this function was inherent to their survival.

Go back about 30 years and women were finally given a safe and legal way to decide their fate over poverty, ridicule, survival of existing children, health and ultimately the path that the rest of their lives might take. Some might simplify and call this a convenience of a sort, but convenience is hardly the most salient issue when deciding to bring a pregnancy to term, or to terminate.

The issue of reproductive rights didn’t become a political one until the government took the practice out of the hands of opportunists butchering and scarring women in back alleys. Yes it wasn’t until the government had a say that anyone gave this issue its proper attention.

No one thinks abortion is a pleasant event: not the people performing them, or receiving them. Undoubtedly, the promise of a miracle is cut short, but simultaneously the potential of a better future is given back. The doctors are sad, the patient is sad, but the choice is typically perceived as a necessity.

I won’t pretend to not hold a very specific opinion on abortion. I am pro-choice, but not without limits. I love children, I want children to be treated like the miracles they are. Sometimes this means telling a women who has chosen to carry her child to term to stop smoking crack, having unprotected sex, drinking bourbon and beer like they’re water, or sometimes it means allowing a woman who knows she cannot properly care for a child to terminate that pregnancy BEFORE it is viable.

This is where the issue becomes cloudy. Some believe life begins at conception -and on some level, they are right. Some believe life begins when there is a heartbeat – there is no doubt that is also a sign of life. Others feel when a life can sustain itself outside the womb it deserves the inalienable rights of all humans. And there are those who think life doesn’t begin until an infant breathes its first breath on its own.

To me, this cloudy issue is where Americans must reach consensus and build law. We must meet in the middle. It is neither reasonable nor democratic to cater to the extreme of either side and leave the majority of opinion left out to dry. We can neither ban, nor have no limits on abortion. It is a moral issue that a moral society must agree to be moral and fair about.

Clearly, if more than 1 million women a year are seeking an abortion, there is an issue that needs to be addressed. The money spent by both sides on this issue would be better spent lobbying for better healthcare for women and children. They should be spending money on education that teaches abstinence and provides birth control that is reliable and easily attainable. The key to preventing abortion is to prevent unwanted pregnancies, and the best way to do that is to educate and give women options BEFORE they become pregnant. Even in the best case scenario, there will always be accidents, rapes, medical emergencies and pregnancies gone terribly wrong, and the option must be there.

We are a fallible race with fallible bodies, and as a society our goal should be to move forward and improve, not retreat back in time to where women were at war with their own bodies.

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About Dawn Olsen

  • http://euphoricreality.net Kit Jarrell

    I’d have to disagree with you. Statistics put out by Planned Parenthood’s own research firm states that only 1.5% of abortions stem from rape or incest. 47 million babies have been aborted since Roe, and 1.5% of 47 million is 705,000. This means that 46,295,000 babies were killed for reasons other than rape/incest.

    The other reasons cited by women seeking abortions included “I’m not ready for a child,” or “I can’t afford a baby,” or even that being pregnant interfered with their career. Whether we like to admit it or not, abortion is used primarily as a method of “after-the-fact” birth control.

    I agree that women should be educated about options, but I think currently there are plenty of avenues for education and prevention of unwanted pregnancy. There are a number of birth control options, and most of them are free or extremely inexpensive.

    The bottom line about abortion is that the “freedom to choose” begins before conception. A woman needs to make the correct choices before becoming pregnant, whether that choice be to use birth control consistently, or even to practice abstinence until they are in a position to raise a child.

    It’s a simple fact that if you have sex, you could become pregnant. We expect those who are HIV-positive to practice safe sex and to be responsible about their medical status, don’t we? Why wouldn’t we expect women to be responsible with their sexual practices as well?

    Women do have choices. They can choose not to engage in unsafe behavior that could result in becoming pregnant. Once they have a child growing within them, they have involved another human life. At that point, the only choice should be to keep the child or give him up for adoption.

    1.5% is not enough to justify 47 million deaths.

  • Nelson

    I don’t mean to get off the subject, but it is still the subject about a human life (or anylife). When did you so called pro-life people start to care about life and death when their are tons of existing children in the world you can save right now? Or people out there which have not “sin” but deserve to live? Lets not just look at abortions soo critically without looking at the big picture of things here.

  • Nelson

    And of course my view is to let women and only women to decide this issue alone.(No politicians or Priests and such) They are not dumb enough to mess this up for you doubter’s.

  • Nick Kitamure

    It is funny how the ultra conservations have got it into their head that that this “great” nation of ours was founded by a group of people seeking to escape religious persecution and who’s descendents later decided that this nation would be a safe haven for all religions, was founded on “Christian morals and should thus uphold them.” But how many Christian morals was our nation founded upon? Two, thou shall not murder, and thou shall not steal. Two UNIVERSAL laws. Christians are a MINORITY in this nation. Many great and wonderful cultures and religions make up the vast diversity of the American public. Why should we all be forced to amend to your doctrine? Why should we all be forced to accept your views? Only a fool would claim that that is not happening. Gay marriage has been outlawed on the bases that “marriage is a sacred bond.” But come on! Who are we kidding? In a nation who’s public spends their evenings watching fine television programs like, “who wants to marry a millionaire,” “Who wants to marry a midget,” “Trading Spouses,” “The bachelor.” In a nation where the divorce rate is sky rocketing. In this deprived nation there are actually fools who dare claim that marriage is scared?! Ha, marriage has never been sacred. Hell, for most of history all over the world marriage has been prearranged in exchange for a cow or two with no care as to the wedded couple’s wishes. The conservatives have an agenda to instill the narrow minded Christian morals in the hearts of Americas, and if they cannot do that, then they will just pass law forcing us to be like them for god forbid life be interesting, full of color and free choice. God forbid anyone enjoys themselves before their short time on this wretched planet is over. And this isn’t new, not at all. Look at the state laws that have been forgotten over the years due to the fact that they couldn’t be enforced –

    Arizona, Cottonwood – It is illegal for a couple to have sex in a vehicle with flat wheels. The fine is doubled if the sex occurs in the back seat.

    And:

    It is illegal for unmarried persons to have sex. The penalty is three years in prison.

    Arkansas – Adultery is punishable by a $20 to $100 fine.

    California – Adultery is punishable by a $1,000 fine and/or one year in prison.

    And:

    Husbands and wives are prohibited from having oral sex.

    Connecticut – “Private sexual behavior between consenting adults” is still illegal.

    Florida – Oral sex is punishable by a 20-year prison term.

    Indiana – It is illegal to entice someone under 21 to masturbate.

    And hundreds more…

    What right does the government or anyone else have to tell individuals what they can and can’t do in the privacy of their own homes! It does not hurt anyone if me and by lover, hetero or homosexual, are having anal/oral/constant consensual sex, it is our business, it is our bodies, for ****s sake stay out of it!

    Mark my words. Gay marriage, abortion, just the first of our rights to be stripped away. Gorge Orwell, Ann Rand and countless others wrote about it. It is just a matter of time until the technology and will is there. Those laws went out of practice because there was no way to enforce them. But, is that true today?

  • http://euphoricreality.net Kit Jarrell

    I’m not using the word “sin” at all, and I agree there are many, many children that need help. However, what you’re basically saying is that because there are ‘already enough children who need help,’ that somehow killing off some helps.

    As for the “women and only women” idea: I am a woman, I am a rape victim, and I chose to keep the child born of that rape. Therefore, I think I’m in a decent position to debate the topic.

  • Acke

    im not pro-life or pro-choice yet but from what i see Kit Jarrel makes a viable argument. Women should make the choice before they have sex because EVERYONE knows if u have sex without condoms or such you will get pregnant… women want to have they cake and eat it. Also in my opinion there is the male point of view… once a woman gets pregnant the man is helpless… he has no say in the matter… if they want to have a baby at that time its up to them and if they dont they dont have to… women have a choice but men are basically forced to live after how the woman decides. A man is left with all the responsibilities but none of the benefits if u get what i mean. At the very least the man should get a say in the matter because he is after all bound to the choice she makes for the rest of his life.

    Personally i hate the primitive direction America is takin. I mean there are alot of things suggesting America is becoming the next extremist religious country… what with the terry schivo case and the president getting to elect 2 supreme court judges that are problably gonna rule in the favor of the christian base that pulls his strings.

  • http://euphoricreality.net Kit Jarrell

    Nick,

    I never said you needed to conform to my religion, and I never mentioned gay marriage, either.

    I also can’t speak to the antiquated laws that in this day and age are obviously outdated and borderline ridiculous.

    I never said women–or men–can’t enjoy themselves. I simply said that if you choose to engage in behavior that can result in conception, you should either be willing to accept that risk or take steps to prevent it. That’s all.

  • Earl

    Its again a question whether the unborn child has the inherent right to live or it is up to the person who shares the body as a medium for the child’s survival to decide. I personally believe that the child has no basic right unless the child has the ability to breath in its own in this world. And I also believe a person must be the master of his/her own body. If someone wants to interfere with that, that interfering person must provide the necessary compensation – for every pain, productivity loss, treatments, etc of the person he or she is trying to control. And if that person doesnt want too, then that person just should keep quiet and mind his/her own body, ah business I mean…

  • Acke

    Oh yeah… i still belive women should be able to get abortions under certain conditions… like when they get raped and if the baby will suffer from drug addiction and birth abnormalities and such.

  • http://euphoricreality.net Kit Jarrell

    Earl,

    If a baby has no rights until it breathes on its own, how do you justify one baby being born prematurely at 6 months, and another being aborted at 7? Viability is no longer a cut and dry thing. Medical advances have made it possible for babies to live outside the womb far earlier than ever before, and there is no reason to think those advances won’t continue. At what point is the line?

  • Earl

    kit,

    then if someone asserts that that baby can live in his/her own, then that person should provide the monetary compesation/treatment to get the child out of the mother and will provide the child the proper healthcare that the child needs. if not, then i still believe its still the decision of the mother. i just believe if someone wants to take away ur rights, they must be willing to shoulder the responsibility for it.

  • Robert S.

    I am amazed at the reasoning on this issue. Once RvW is overturned and sent back to the states, each state will decide what it wants to do and let the people vote on it. After the people have voted, then the issue is over. That is why the UK doesn’t have all the self-flaggalation over this issue. Any issue where 5 people in robes decides for the whole country what is law, and not the elected officials, then you will have this problem. Let the people decide it.

  • http://euphoricreality.net Kit Jarrell

    Earl,

    That’s a perfect case for father’s rights, wouldn’t you say? If a mother wants to abort and the father is financially able and willing to care for the child, shouldn’t he have the right to stop the abortion and keep the child?

  • nixon

    no not just woman’s choice… its also man’s !!

    i think new rules should be this…
    other then rape or whatever, abortion should not allow… unles they can’t afford one then give a birth and give it away to the government…
    abortion is same as killing ! not murder but killing…
    so abortion should not allow unless rape…
    otherwise if womans are not careful , tahts their problem, cause abortion isn’t a joke…
    and another thing is that for sure if waht i said will happen , then i bet u there will a fake rape… just to abort, women will lie that their husband or boyfriend raped them, so tahts another issue but for now , I think abortion should not allow.
    i am not saying this as religion or politician…. It jsut not right…

  • http://www.freedomfolks.blogspot.com Jake Jacobsen

    In Rome there was a law, Pater Familias. The upshot of this law was that the father could, in essence, kill his family if they displeased him. It wasn’t invoked much, but it was the law.

    I’m sure that strikes everyone as appropriately barbaric, yes? What precisely is the difference between that and abortion? Except now women have become the killers of the innocent.

    I find it extraordinary in this day and age where contraception is cheap, plentiful and handed out like candy in schools among many other places that abortion is still so prevalent.

    If we’re all agreed that abortion is not to be taken lightly why are so many still happening? Does it not seem a contradiction in terms to talk about abortion being “safe and rare” and yet they still occur wholesale?

    I look forward to your responses.

  • Robert

    Wemon do not have to justife there reasons for haveing an abortion to any person or group (free country) and any who would consider taking that right away then I would say make each and every one of you Care for 46,295,000 babies. Not the State not welfare not some Orginazation that smacks of Perversion in the name of any god and then is covered up, BUT YOU! What would the impact of 46,295,000 babies born to families who were not ready, mature, or just plain Wanted, be to our country. Oh and Life begins at the Celular Level remember that the Next time you dessinfect your counter tops. It is the the most painfull thing to do to have an abortion to make that Choise lets not make it even harder for them
    lets support them by makeing sure that when they do make it that the Procedure is Safe and done with careing people. (Stem Cell reasearch will insure that Life will continue form that Chosie)

  • Earl

    Kit,

    Yes, you could say that. If someone wants to stand up and shoulder the responsibility then it should be okay, provided the mother and that person comes to a mutual agreement of the terms. The mother’s permission is very important bec. some things are not so black and white. Like rape cases wherein if the mother would think her child would be a reflection of the tragedy or if the mother is scared of dying and she views that having a child would be the end of her, or whatever reason she may have no matter how ridiculous it may seem to us. I believe the mother must not be obligated to give birth but just to convince her if she doesn’t want to. After all, it is her body we’re talking about. I believe giving birth is a sacrifice and not an obligation, and let’s just say some ppl don’t want to, no matter how illogical they may seem, its their right.

    On a side note, why I do believe that the unborn child really has no basic right to live… its because he/she has no choice about it. That is one of the things as humans we have no choice (aside from having no choice who are real parents). Some people may have wished that they were better off not being born at all bec. of the life they have lived… but sorry.. in that case… life is just unfair. This is just a case where one’s right overshadows another. Its quite sad but that’s reality.. and if someone wants to change that, bear the responsibility of it.

  • Nick Kitamure

    Kit Jarrell, I wasn’t speaking directly to you or anyone for that matter, but just putting my thoughts to paper (sorta?) In fact, when I wrote that you had not posted yet and I just ended up posting after you. But I agree, if people are going to have casual sex they need to realize there are consequences, however… should a “pure and innocent child” be an instrument of punishment? In my opinion, it should be up to the individuals involved and those affected as how to deal with unwanted pregnancy.

  • Nick Kitamure

    Farther more on the subject. Me and my girlfriend do indulge in the pleasures of the flesh quite often (everyday, many times, lunch breaks and every other option we get. Being separated three thousand miles for two years and then finally being reunited will do that to a couple.) However, knowing that we both had a great deal of lust for one another, and taking in account the fact that we do not want children, I got a vasectomy much before we began our sexual relationship. If only people would be responsible and reasonable this issue would be nonexistent. It is unfortunate we live in a world populated by rapists, people who engage in casual thoughtless sex, children/teenagers who foolish experiment with sex because it makes them fell cool/adult/mature or whatever BS, and so many other sad pathetic examples of why I will not shed a tear if and when the cruel reign of man comes to an end.

  • Nelson

    What is the basis for right or wrong? Bad or Good? Life or Death? If you think their is a basis then it is about time to change your believes. You can keep defending your believes but science (of all kinds) is about to change everything. You just have to realize it….I m daring all people to go out there and do some research. All I know is that life can NOT be run by rules along.

  • paul

    leave out the concepts of good and bad, right and wrong or moral and immoral. A woman can decide to abort because it’s not the “right time” to have a child and walk away from her responsibility, but if a man decides it’s not the “right time” and walks away the courts will put him in jail for at least not providing financial support. If you are going to have abortions being done as frequently as they are then the man should be able to just walk away also.

  • Silver

    Here is my take:

    Women do have choices: Not to have sex, to be protected DURING sex and to give the baby up for adoption.

    There are many MANY parents only too willing to adopt. I see NO need for abortion what so ever.

    A lot of babies are born to parents who can’t financially support them. Guess what, we have a system for that: ADOPTION.

    If a woman doesn’t want to go through the pain of giving birth, then THEY shouldnt’ have sex, or protect themselves during sex. If THEY are not careful, then THEY should live with the consequences. Just like anything. Take responsbilitity for your own actions.

    A lot of children are aborted just because it ‘inconviences’ the mother. WELL TOO BAD is what I say. If they are not willing or able to deal with the consequences, then simple, don’t have sex, or protect yourself. That isn’r rocket science.

    If a man can’t legally walk away from his child because he doesn’t want to support it, then neither should a woman. That is 100% fair.

    The ONLY way I can see abortion being justified is if there is a medical reason for it and there is no other medical alternative to solve the problem.

    For me, life begins at conception. If a girl doesn’t want a child, they should take steps to avoid it. If a mistake happens? their fault, and they shouldn’t run to medical technology to solve it. They should deal with it like a decent human being and not kill a child. Cause that is exactly what abortion is..killing and murder.

  • Flushingcomic

    First of all I am Male
    Second of all, What right does anyone have over someone elses body.
    My Mother Raised me and always chose what was best for me, and i Respect her decision, if it was in my best interest to never be born, i would not have been.
    Abortion is Nessasary, theres are the figures i get for failure rate of contracpetives when i just google it.
    * Implants and injectables
    2-4%

    * Oral contraceptives
    9%

    * Diaphragm and cervical cap
    13%

    * Male condom
    15%

    * Periodic abstinence
    22%

    * Withdrawal
    26%

    * Spermicides
    28%

    so the two biggest used contraceptives, the condom, and the Pill, have a average of 12% failure, Meaning 12% of all pregnacies were an acident.

    When abortion rates go above 12% of all pregnacies than ill start to worry.

    so, using the first posters number 700,000 people had an abortion because of Rape and Incest. That is an Aweful Lot of rapes. and you say 65 million people had an abortion on top of that. I say good. You people are sick, thinking that you should have any control over another person(and just think of it this way, less gay people because you care so much about sex you want to control every aspect of it)

    Abortion Is NOT a political Issue it IS NOT a Religious Issue, It is NOT an Issue at all

    How many Children are waiting to be adopted, now add the 65 million from abortions, thats got to be over 100 million children, and lets say at least 50 million were in foster care at the same time? that would be a 1/6 of the popluation of the US w/o parents do you think that is fair?

    If i had to live in foster care from the day i was born to the day i turned 18, i would kill myself.

    I believe the rules are currently fair, about first and second trimester abortions, and they shouldnt be changed.

    What Happened to Freedom in America, We are forgetting we founded this country to get away from oppression. so Stop oppressing people

    Leave the decision of abortion to parents, There should be some kind of balance between the decision of abortion though, if my Girlfriend and I got Pregnant lets say, The decision should be between us, I dont believe i am ready for a child, and neiter does she, but if one of us thought we should have it, we should have it. I will not become like my father, an Alcoholic and Spousual abuster, if she wanted to have it, i would.

    What has happened to the place where i grew up.

    by the way, My step mother had an abortion 3 years ago, after having 4 children with 2 men, the aborted would have been with the 5th man, currently the father of the supposed child is in Jail for Armed Robbery, She made the right decision, if you father is a felon, its just not right.

  • Eric Olsen

    very reasonable and sensible Dawn, I agree with your perspective entirely. Both extremes are neither viable (sorry) nor moral, I believe, for a society to impose on itself, which is what we are talking about with the law

  • Dawn

    Funny thing this post, compared to so many inflammatory ones on the same subject, it still provokes the same response from the right: there is never EVER, EVER a reason to have an abortion, so I am going to impose my moral imperative onto your body and life.

    To those who think that women make such decisions so cavalierly and without considering, weighing or accepting the moral implications of their decision allow me to be the first to set you straight: bullshit to that argument.

    Now, as for no rules on abortion – I am not for that either. I really felt that my article was to seek out a consensus that MOST, not all, but MOST could accept.

    Everyone wants fewer abortions, we all want fewer children in foster care, fewer children (zero would be nice) suffering at the hands of abuse, neglect and just plain old poverty.

    The key to this is PREVENTION. Oh, and to those who say that reliable contraception is just being handed out like candy, I say again: bullshit. Until drug companies and the government can make 100% effective birth control free for all who need it, abortions should and must be available – within reason.

    This isn’t hard and this isn’t an unfair proposal.

    I do know that the pro-Life people have their hearts in the right place, it’s their reasoning I worry about.

  • http://counter-point.blogspot.com Scott

    For full disclosure here, I used to consider myself Pro-life. But I couldn’t rationalize the extreme positions taken by the pro-life camp with what I knew to be true. There were too many logical disconnects in that way of thinking for me to hang onto it. Three things that always struck me on the abortion arguement and hand something to do with my change of mind:

    1. Pro-lifers believe abortion should be made illegal and most also believe in abstinence only sex education. There’s a disconnect there.

    2. Pro-lifers only care if the baby is actually born. What happens to it after that, whether it’s able to be cared for properly, they don’t really care about.

    3. Even if abortion is made illegal, it doesn’t mean abortion will end. They will still go on in some form, somewhere. So, my question to the pro-life camp is this: Are you more interested in prosecuting women who seek abortions or in stopping abortion?

    As far as my beliefs now, I believe abortion should be safe, legal and rare. There’s a way, I believe, to drastically reduce the number of abortions in this country without making it illegal. To do this, you have to address the issues of why women get abortions in the first place which go far beyond selfishness and inconvience. Of course, it’s something the pro-life camp usually doesn’t want to hear so they reject the argument out of hand.

    Just my two cents.

  • metal head

    Its hard to have a concensus on an issue that people feel so strongly about. I dont think you should have the right to kill an unborn child unless a medical nesisty for the same reason most people would frown on me killing my kids now if they annoyed me too much. It just doesnt make any logical sence to me to allow one kind of murder and not others to be fair. People like to talk about the great social implications of abortion … not as many kids being abused yada yada yada… ok look at the bad implications. One of those aborted chlidren could have grown up to cure cancer invent the next revelutionary device or many other things. In the middle east abortion is forbbiden so they have 50 bazillion kids so if a few of them blow themselves up to kill the infidels its no big deal they have plenty more whare that came from. Our generation “gen x” is in real trouble we have this attitude (or at least most do) that everything should just be given to us and there are no consequences for our actions. This is a direct result of the “sexual revolution” and all of the other femanazi crap that went with it. I am glad though that it seems the population is incrasing in spite of abortion. Moor people of the 30 somethings have more children than our parents did. If we didnt who is going to pay for our social security? Our parents have put a great burden on us for not wanting more children and it just might be the breaking point of our economy.

  • Dawn

    Metal Head – I don’t know, I just have a really hard time taking you seriously, for too many reasons to mention.

    But I do have to point out one thing regarding your flawed logic: comparing real statitics, about real children, suffering real abuse – to a what-if regarding children never born is without a doubt a failure on your part to make any kind of sense.

  • Robert

    Its hard for me to grasp why this is an Issue, we all have to be really drawn to Life/Death the beginnings of life the quality of life and the prusuit of happyness is an individual decision best left to each of us. Once we dictate 1 right to Religous fanatics (and there HItler like followers) we might as well all learn to speak German and follow the State to its inevitable end. The core issue is Choise do we let the Wemon chose? or do we make that choise for them.
    I belive that yes Abortion is Horrid to the extrem, yet there are times when that choise is made and I will never sit in judgment its not my place nor anyone else. But that will change now that Alito has been given a position for political reasons. wich makes me ill but in this sys its the Lobbyist that make Law what ever side wins the Wemon loses keep that in mind there are no victors here just losers, again all I can hope for is that there are caring and well trained poeple to runn this proceedure. And I really hope that what is lost during the Abortion is at least used to help cure others of there Ill`s, (Stem Cell reasearch)

  • Druxxx

    I too was once pro-life. I believed life was this grand gift that was not meant to be taken lightly. God gave you that gift and a pregnant mother should bow to god’s will and have the child.

    Now I am a little older and I hope wiser. I realized religion is no more then a control mechanism. I gave up my faith in religion and instead have put it where it belongs, in god. God gave man free will and I am not going to stand in the way of free will happening. I believe abortion is wrong and would try to convince my partner not to have one if she became pregnant. But I am not going to stand in the way of any other woman having an abortion. It is not my choice to make.

    I am sick of pro-life people talking about consequences. Pro-life people seem to think they are without sin. Life is full of getting out of consequences. I am sure many of us spend most of our time putting out the little fires in our lives to avoid as many consequences as possible. When you get pulled over for speeding, do you just ask the cop for the ticket, or do you try to get out of it. Our whole legal system is about getting out of the consequences. Say you slip on some ice and break your leg. Do you say to yourself, “I should have been more careful,” or do you sue the home or business owner for not salting their walkway properly.

    Stop trying to control people’s lives. If god thinks abortion is wrong, he/she will deal with you during the after life. And who is to say when the soul and body meet. What if it is not at conception? What if it is at birth? Maybe the soul creates the cancer curer. That would mean the aborted fetus couldn’t have cured cancer because it might not have had a soul yet. Maybe the potential soul moves on the next fetus if the fetus it was supposed to occupy gets aborted.

    The fact is we don’t know what is right or wrong in the eyes of god. And ours laws cannot be based on god’s will anyway. You know, that whole separation of church and state thing. I think a woman’s rights are more important then another’s beliefs. Pro-lifers say they want the error on the side of life. Until they can prove that abortion is murdering a full-fledged, living being, I will error on the side of a woman’s rights.

  • Nancy

    Obviously, what is needed is a 100% totally foolproof utterly dependable contraceptive; however, my medical research indicates that aside from a full hysterectomy, there is no such thing. Even vasectomies have been known to fail.

    So, the next most logical thing is a dependable contraceptive to prevent the egg from implanting in the uterus. That we have, if the FDA & BushCo would stop trying to foist their hypocritical religious mania onto the public at large and go ahead & release it.

    The RU morning-after is to date the most humane & widely acceptable procedure/solution available. If made available over the counter, it will almost certainly prevent hundreds of thousands of abortions simply by preventing the pregnancy to begin with. It will further render the objections of the fanatic Right To Life fringe who like to bomb womens health clinics moot, unless they intend to blow up or harrass every drugstore in the nation – a major setback for most of them.

    I find it hard to comprehend why the majority of more moderate right to lifers object, when in fact this drug does not terminate a pregnancy, but in fact prevents it from ever taking place. I should think this would be the ideal solution, in that it answers the moral requisite that no human, embryonic or otherwise, be killed. An egg that doesn’t implant is not killed, it simply doesn’t develop, a process that occurs constantly and naturally. One would think that this being the case, the moderates would therefore join in demanding that BushCo & the FDA stop stonewalling release of this pill, in that it does indeed contribute to a partial solution to their moral objections.

  • Dawn

    Nancy, I can’t argue with that logic.

  • Nancy

    What gives it away (for me at least) that the real issue with the lunatic RTL fringe is control & not moral issues is that they object to such an entirely logical & reasonable solution; by their standards, every woman who gets her monthly menses is therefore a murderer, since her egg failed to implant – and it might have whiffed a sperm cell.

  • RyMantys

    I believe in the right of people to live the way they want as much as they can. Personally, I wouldn’t abort for the life of me. I think you can raise a child when you’re poor, even more than one. I think you can love a child you had through rape, I think you should take responsibility for your mistakes, ans also, I think a child is a living thing since its conception, and like all living things, it wants to go on living. Because of that, I think it’s terribly sad to end its life.
    But who am I to judge people who don’t think like me? And more importantly, who am I to force them to act the way I see fit? I have no right to that, and neither does anyone.
    Freedom is the best thing we humans CAN have, since happiness and justice are so difficult to obtain. Let people decide for themselves and try to live true to yourselves.

  • http://screenrant.com Screen Rant

    “Obviously, what is needed is a 100% totally foolproof utterly dependable contraceptive”

    There are two:

    1. Hysterectomy.
    2. Abstinence.

    Vic

  • Dawn

    Yeah, Vic, that’s a big flipping DUH!

    Maybe something a little more feasible and less drastic, you know, maybe something that works within the human sexual cycle.

  • JR

    Screen Rant: 2. Abstinence.

    I’ve heard even that one has failed once or twice, but I’m not sure I believe it.

  • Eric Olsen

    I’ve heard of women who are so fertile they can get pregnant eating hot dogs

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    Talk about the Immaculate Conception. Which brand of hot dog is most dangerous of fertilizing an egg?

  • SonnyD

    I know a woman who says she can get pregnant if the wind blows the wrong way.

  • Alan

    I am from the UK where the debate about sexual issues are less polarized. We have had legal abortions since 1967, which allows an abortion to take place with the consent of two doctors. The original upper limit for abortions was 28 weeks, this was reduced too 24 weeks in the 90s. Recently there was a debate too further reduce the upper limit of abortions because of the advancement of medical science. However, experts concluded present upper limit was best.

    Under this law women per se still don’t have full control of their bodies, as 2 doctors must consent. There has been talk to remove 2 doctor consent from the bill.

    I believe in choice that legal abortions should be available to women, with expert advice and support too help them through this difficult decision.

    This should be paired with wide ranging sexual education. In the schools, colleges and youth centres to decrease pregnancies amongst the young. To abstain from sexual activity is not the only means to control unwanted pregnancies. I am not sure how you educate someone not too perform the most natural act in nature, it is how we survive and diversify as humans.

    Do u have the morning after pill widely available in the USA?

    Which can stop the sperm from pregnating the egg, thus no fetus is ever formed.

  • boneycat

    I’m new to this forum and read this thread with great interest. It gives a good insight to why people believe what they believe and the raionale behind it. Personally I am also in the middle between RTL and PC. Common sense dictates that a child that may not develop right, mother has been raped, mother is on drugs, etc. are all valid points for aborting a fetus. I do believe on the otherhand though, that every adult has a responsibility. Society aside, biologically our only functions as adults are to reproduce and care for our young. Please reread that last statement carefully as I used the term “biologically”. Sometimes to get to the root of an issue you literally have to get to the root.

    Obviously we do live in a society and in a country where people are allowed to voice their opinions and beliefs. I do believe in calling people a conservatist or a luney liberal. Each person has a belief and we must respect that belief. Our society is also based on morality. This morality dictates and influences our laws. Obviously one cannot go out and slug someone for any reason. Just one of countless examples. Abortion should also be based on common sense and morality. Who’s morality? That’s a very good question. The more I read on the topic though one thing is clear: abortion appears to be more of an excuse then to living up to ones obligation of being a parent.

    I don’t believe the government should be involved in this. Elected officials will do anything to get a vote (personally I think it’s the politicians who purposely stir the pot to polarize the populace). It is the choice of the parent, but I sure wish there was a way to give the fetus a voice as well.

  • alan_scotland

    I hope your judges, politicians and society can find concensus on this issue. Education and awareness are important factors to help develop concensus. Individual freedom is important, judges ruling what you can and cannot do to your own body flies in the face of freedom. Some want freedom, but on their terms.

  • YerAllNuts

    I read these posting and see the same thing over and over. Blame the right, its the rights fault, they are all religious zealot, They are trying to take away MY RIGHTS. Little clue kids “your rights” are an illusion. They Are merely priviliges disguised in a different name. The left wing is just as bad (and sometimes worse) Than the right wing in trampling “freedoms” and “rights”. It just the left uses political correctness as their favored method. You want freedom become an anarchist. No I am not talking the namby pamby lets all get along anarchist. I am talking the take/rape/do whatever the hell you want anarchist. Of course you would need actually strength to pull it off. Most of the people don’t have that strength. No instead we have a flawed government to be our strength for us. The we complain about the flaws. Actions are taken to remove these flaws creating bigger flaws in its wake. Until the whole thing get so big that it collapses.

    By the way I am pro abortion. That still doesn’t RvW good law. Its one of the biggest pieces of trash to come out of the courts in history. Its bad law and worse precedent. I am not talking the abortion aspect of it. I am talking the mechanism they used to pass it.

  • Rose

    I have just read some of your ideas and comments on this subject. I would like to say a few words and leave it at that. I know of a few people who had gotten pregnant in their early teens. Yes, they did keep these children but they also went through a lot of hardship. We’re talking financially, physically, and emotionally. Some of the ‘fathers’ were just children as well. Try and tell a 13 or 14 yr old that they need to help support a child they were not prepared to take care of and that their dreams of making something of themselves will have to be put on the backburner for however long that takes. I understand that not all birth control is not perfect and abstinence is up to the individual but also think about all the physicians that are asked to perform tubal ligation on women who already have 2 or 3 children(that’s all they want to have) and are told they need to have more children before the procedure can be done. That in itself is assinine. The women made a conscience choice and were not allowed to exercise that choice. I myself had my tubes tied after my third child. My doctor had the nerve to tell me I had to ask my husband for permission. I had a hard time with my pregnancies and almost died twice. I figured that at that point I was the only one who should have the choice. Also, during my third pregnancy my husband was cheating on me. If the doctor had not tied my tubes I would probably have had a couple of more kids if my husband had any choice in the matter. The choice should be the women’s whether or not she should have a child or not. Just remember these women also have to live with their decision and trust me, it can haunt you for the rest of your life. Before Roe vs Wade, women went to back alleys to have abortions. Alot of women died because they felt they had no safe haven to go to for a safer procedure. If you take away the choices they’ve been given, guess what will again be done in back alleys. Not only for grown women, but also, our young daughters who feel they have no other option. okay, it was more than just a few words.

  • http://bacalar.blogspot.com Howard Dratch

    Dawn. Good post. Good logic. Good thinking. So much was written after your post. So much of the pro-life dissent was written in such a semi-literate fashion that I will only add — Good post. Good logic. Good thinking.

  • Nelson

    I m back… I have read all of your posts so far and I like what is being said from all sides. But some of you really have to grow up and let your mind evolve and get out of the state that your in.(And you will as time goes by) I hate to ramble on about Life/Death, and life IS very very good, but convince me with a FACT that Death is a bad thing? I think it just creates fear out of not knowing what happens when you cease to exist…A GOOD FACT…..i hate periods………could you imagine for a second how wonderful our world could be without a fear of death? We all die and some die in weird ways, but it goes on in nature all the time (could we all not be natural?) Ok stop thinking in your minds for a second on trying to find excuses for the things I just mentioned. So what is there to prevent if the afterlife is great and tons of babies get sent there…I didnt send them there. The people that did send them are responsible, AND I DONT GIVE A FUCK WHAT HEPPENS TO THEM BECAUSE WE DONT FUCKING KNOW. SO THERE IS THE END OF IT. now why cant we all just get along?

  • Brandon

    ABORTION IS MURDER. Murder is defined legally, morally, and every other way I know of as the premeditated taking of a humans life. Nick Kitamure all you have done is bash Christians. This country was founded by Christians established by Christians and during our most prosperous years governed by Christians. So I guess you could say america only exsist to have the option of debating this issue because of Christians.

  • Nancy

    It’s all very well & good to say that every child wants to live; so does every creature on the face of this earth, including vermin like roaches & Saddam Hussein, but that doesn’t mean it’s axiomatically desirable they exist. Yes, some aborted embryos indeed could be the next Einstein – or the next Hitler; that argument doesn’t hold water, since it works both ways.

    My question is, is it desirable or even feasible to force anyone to breed against their will or even just reluctantly? Won’t this just engender resentment and abuse of the child – which is kind of counterproductive of the reason for living to begin with? I don’t see how the state or adoptions could handle all of them, either: the state doesn’t do a very good job from what I read concerning problems with either orphanages (or whatever they call them nowadays) or foster home systems; there aren’t enough people wanting to adopt the ‘extra’ unwanted kids, especially those who are non-white, less than perfect, or older than infancy; and leaving them with (frequently) horrifically abusive or absent parents or family members doesn’t seem to be a good solution to me, either.

    Are we saying that life is so precious that it’s worth it even if the subject will be treated to a loveless, empty life deviod of caring or comfort? I think of some of the case histories I’ve read (Henry Lee Lucas, the serial killer, comes to mind) of terribly abused children, and while granted few are going to go the route of the late Mr. Lucas, it still seems to me (and it did to him, too) that life would have been better unlived if it were going to be that bad.

    So…aside from warehousing unwanted kids, what do we do with them, if they are forcibly born? And what is the actual reason for forcing the mother to give birth: is it really “respect” for life, or is it vindictiveness/punishment for perceived sexual mistakes?

  • Paul

    Nancy,

    I don’t think it matters who the embryo will eventually become, but the fact fact that it will be and is a life is enough. You cannot make this a religious argument since not everyone is guided be the same principles. I am a conservative, a christian, and pro life. I do believe in abortions in some case like rape and the life of the mother being in jeopardy. Even if you say its ok for juveniles to have an abortion because they just didnt know, your still left with all the adult females who are taking the risk by having unprotected sex. Everyone keeps talking out birth control not being 100% or a vasectomy not working but how many of the aborted children where the result of that. Most unwanted pregnancies are the result of people not being responsible.

  • Nancy

    Ok, fine – but that still doesn’t address the problem: so what do we do with all these unwanted kids? Do we leave them to be abused? Warehouse them? Turn them into Soylent Green? What? How about some constructive ideas instead of moral suasion?

  • Paul

    I don’t pretend to have the answer to everything. I have a 10 y/o and a 7 y/o son and this stuff scares the shit out of me. I will raise my son so hopefully he will feel that even if the pregnancy is unwanted, the resulting child is not. That if he does not make sex a casual thing, then the women he loved so much to share the sexual experience with can raise the child together. I think if we can change the way our children our growing up without respect for them selves or each other, then they may be less abortions and unwanted children. There are tons of couples that want these children. We need to make the adoption process easier and cheaper. The old saying that “you need a license to drive, have to be of age to drink, and 18 to vote, but any butt head can be a parent” rings true. It all starts at home and its our jobs as parents to make a difference in our children and their future.

  • Mark

    Arguments like Nancy’s “what about all these unwanted children?'” argument tend to confuse me a little. I dont really understand why it is seen as a reasonible or even a viable argument to simply pose a hypothetical situation and then decide that only the worst is going to happen. I am sure that there have been some children who were not planned who have gone on to lead normal happy lives. I am sure that some unplanned children have had abusive, sad childhood but have overcome their trials and gone on to lead happy, well-adjusted lives through counseling. I am sure that there were some unplanned children who had abusive childhoods and grew up to be serial killers and wished they had never been born, but I am also willing to bet these are in the minority. To say it is better to kill a child before it has a chance that something bad might happen to it kinda rings a little crazy to me. Saying that these children wont have enough is stupid because more people in the world means more people to farm, more minds to invent, more hands to create. We dont live in a zero-sum world.

    I’m also a little confused by people who seem outraged at being forced to do things, like procreate. We are forced to do things every day like stop at red lights and drive on the right and NOT KILL PEOPLE. I know that many out there like to paint pro-life people as sexually repressed pathetic losers who want to punish sexually active people for all the fun we cant have, but for a second try to think of someone besides yourself and realize that what most of us think is how unfair it is to kill someone who is innocent. This is why we imprison people who kill other people, because its wrong. So unless you feel its okay to start offing others, keep quiet and you damn well better believe I’m going to tell you what you can and cant do.

  • KYS

    Sorry Mark,
    You’re really not in any position to tell others what to do. I will have sex with whomever I choose; how, when and why I choose. I will use whatever contraception I choose. I will marry, procreate, vote, dance, eat, sleep and sing whenever I want to without having to check with you even once. And in America, it is also legal to safely terminate a pregnancy. Again, nobody needs your permission.

    Just because YOU don’t want to have choices in your life doesn’t mean they are inherently evil.

  • Howard

    “I will have sex with whomever I choose; how, when and why I choose”

    And the result of your choices has been an epidemic of genital herpes, gonorrhea, AIDS, prostitution, pedophilia, pornography, etc.

    “Just because YOU don’t want to have choices in your life doesn’t mean they are inherently evil.”

    And you say these results are not evil in your mind?

    That’s because your mind is stuck between your legs.

  • Mark

    KYS, I said you can only talk if you think its okay to start offing people. Yeah….thats all I need to say I think. You didnt even refute anything I said, you just claim that I am not in any position to tell you what to do, but I am….so there. It fun to argue like your three years old.

  • KYS

    Okay, kids. Hostility gets us nowhere. This is a volatile subject, I agree, but if we’re trying to find mutual ground we’re going about it the wrong way (unless you guys just want to argue pointlessly….). Let me respond:

    In comment #55 Howard says: “And the result of your choices has been an epidemic of genital herpes, gonorrhea, AIDS, prostitution, pedophilia, pornography, etc.”

    Actually, you couldn’t be more wrong. Despite an active sex life starting in my teens I have never had an STD, been involved with any prostitution or engaged in pedophilia. Ok, I’ve seen porn a few times, but I was young and in college. ;). I’ve had some wonderful, loving relationships and a few flings here and there. Respect is the key; respect for oneself and respect for one’s partner no matter the circumstance.

    The point is that with choice comes responsibility, of course. That’s why we need to educate! As a kid, I had lots of questions about sex and my parents were open and honest about giving me the answers. Sex was de-mystified for me. When I decided to become sexually active I had all the information I needed to keep myself safe; physically and psychologically. So, Howard, can you at least consider the possibility that parental guidance and the availability of information will contribute to good decision making skills for our kids?

    In Comment #56 Mark says: “I said you can only talk if you think its okay to start offing people.”

    Mark, I’m sorry to burst your bubble but I’m simply not limited (or intimidated) by any ultimatums you make regarding when I can and cannot comment. If you’d like the rules changed I suggest you email Blog Critics directly.

    Mark goes on to say, “you just claim that I am not in any position to tell you what to do, but I am….so there. It fun to argue like your [sic] three years old.”

    What authority do you have, Mark? If you keep positioning yourself like this I don’t see how a mutual exchange of ideas can take place- and I think that’s what prevents us, as a society, from reaching effective solutions across social, political and religious divides.

  • Howard

    “Despite an active sex life starting in my teens I have never had an STD, been involved with any prostitution or engaged in pedophilia…”

    KYS, Don’t take my statements personally. I was referring to societal problems, not yours personally.

    There has been an epidemic of genital herpes, gonorrhea, AIDS, prostitution, pedophilia, pornography, etc, caused by libertines whose minds are positioned between their legs.

    And the societal effects have been evil.

  • http://www.supercinski.net Thomas

    There have been several issues addressed in the comments, many of which don’t quite matter to the real point at hand. The real issue about abortion isn’t primarily women’s reproductive health, choices or rights; it isn’t primarily about ‘human free will’ or being told what to do; it isn’t about any resultant societal burdens (hypothetical or actual), right wing nut jobs or communist liberals, or how well people on either side of the issue walk the conclusions of their talk.

    While all of these are important, the opinions and course of action one recommends all flow out of (or, at least should) what one sees the ‘thing’ inside a women is – is it a human or is it not a human?

    There are all kinds of statistics, anecdotes, and other data that support each conclusion. Some draw conclusions on their religious beliefs and some on scientific/medical grounds, not to mention all the opinions all along the spectrum masquerading as facts.

    Some things I’ve read suggest that a heartbeat is evident at 21 days, which is usually before or just around when a women realizes she may be/is pregnant. I personally see that as great evidence that the thing inside a women is a human. Now, you may not agree with that basis and I really understand how one might not see it that way. We can wrangle about when life really begins (at first breath, first decision, conception, implantation, X # of weeks in the womb, etc, etc). Many of these arguments don’t hold water, which really aren’t the point anyway. (Some of these taken to their logical conclusions really get to be absurdly humorous, by the way).

    Personally, I believe that life begins at conception.

    But here, I appeal to the idea that, left alone (excepting natural miscarriage, etc), that the thing inside a women will inevitably and eventually become a human being, no matter your definition of what a human is (first breath, conscience, et al). I believe that we all can agree on this. Further, I think we all should agree on this.

    Now for an imperfect analogy: let us say you were told that if you put several common items (say a water glass and a pillow) together in a dark closet and left the door shut for a certain amount of time (again, say, 3 weeks) that the items would become 1 million USD. What would you do? Most would put the items in the closet and be quite careful to keep the door shut for the 3 weeks time. Why? I think you would agree it is because you value 1 million USD, and the initial investment of time and effort was small and certainly not unenjoyable.

    If we really do value human life, we would do everything possible to help and nurture it, which, yes, does include supporting adoption, poor mothers/families, rape victims, etc. The fact that some who oppose abortion don’t truly follow through with this isn’t enough to dismiss their argument. Conversely, the fact that many who support abortion do a better job of loving and caring for people is not enough to support abortion either.

    Above, Nancy makes an interesting point about contraception that stops implantation and thus avoids all the wrangling about when life begins and makes all the debate moot. However, if one believes that life begins at conception, then the morning after pill offers an early abortion, ending the chance of life for the already rapidly multiplying group of cells.

    This point actually touches on another related issue that unfortunately gets lumped together with abortion and confuses many. This is the idea of separating the functions of sexual activity. My opinions on this are not as well organized in my mind, so I’ll simply state them and welcome more discussion.

    Sex has several functions – including, but not limited to: pleasure for the participants, procreation, emotional bonding, and societal stability. I think many of the problems we see today have come from our attempts to separate these functions that are designed to all be in effect simultaneously. On those grounds (and what I believe about the beginning of life) I couldn’t support Nancy’s view that the ‘morning after’ pill is a good solution as it separates sex from the procreative aspect and continues to support so many individual difficulty and societal ills.

  • KYS

    Howard,

    If you re-read I think you’ll find that your comment read quite personally, so that is how I responded. No worries, however. I have the skin of a BC commenter; armadillo-like! But I chose to use my personal experience as an example of the benefits of good sex-education. I’ve made great choices with that information!

    You say “There has been an epidemic of genital herpes, gonorrhea, AIDS, prostitution, pedophilia, pornography, etc, caused by libertines whose minds are positioned between their legs.” Since when, the Roman Empire? Yup, I’d agree with that (with the exception of AIDS). And yet we keep on truckin.

    Here’s the thing: there is no religion, political position or moral stand that will eliminate any of these issues. Education and open discussion are the keys. We teach our kids how to say no to drugs, not to smoke and drive safely; sex ed should be no different. Knowledge is power!

    For example, you are allowed to consume all the red meat you desire, despite the fact that it tends to cause health issues and even death for those at risk. So, should we eliminate red meat from America forever because some people don’t know how to regulate their intake? OR should we educate all people regarding the benefits v risks of consuming read meat and let them make their own decisions?

    When you use words like ‘evil’ it reads like biblical doom. If I told you that cholesterol was “evil”; the tool of the devil, wouldn’t you laugh? If you want to change the world, you need to reach out to people on neutral ground. STD’s aren’t “evil” to many people; they are simply the consequences of risky sexual behavior. Now that’s a message you can take to Christians, Muslims, Buddhists and atheists alike. Isn’t that what this thread is about?

  • Howard

    “Since when, the Roman Empire?”

    No, KYS. Since people dropped “evil” out of their vocabularies, starting about two generations ago.

    It is a historical fact that for the past four decades, there has been an epidemic of teen pregnancies, unwed mothers, single-parent families, genital herpes, gonorrhea, AIDS, prostitution, pedophilia, pornography, etc, caused by a libertine culture encouraging people to let their minds be controlled by urges emanating from between their legs.

  • KYS

    Historical fact?

    Please cite references to back up your claim that the last 40 years has seen a significant increase in genital herpes, gonorrhea, prostitution, pedophilia and pornography. Please also define “etc.” Seriously, you keep bringing it up, so where’s your proof?

    Please also provide proof that any of these increases have been caused by a libertine culture encouraging people to let their minds be controlled by urges emanating from between their legs. I am willing to support your OPINION as such, but if you want to treat this as FACT you’ll have to link to some sort of valid news source! ;)

    BTW, It’s just as valid to assume that single-parent families are on the rise because fewer women are having abortions than we thought, and they are raising their children despite their marital status. Isn’t that what the pro-lifers want? Jeeze, ya can’t have it both ways!

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    Howard, (comment 61) going with your premise, there could be two solutions:

    1) morally define (possibly even through legislation) as to what people can do

    2) educate as to the consequences and educate as to safe practices.

    Which is it folks?

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    Howard, you say since people dropped evil from their vocabulary and then talk about things like teen pregnancy. Would you advocate the teaching that sex outside of marriage is ‘evil’?

  • Howard

    You betcha.

  • KYS

    “Since people dropped “evil” out of their vocabularies”

    What do you mean by this? Are you suggesting that we can only define morality in religious terms? Feh, I say!

  • Howard

    KYS, when you ask me to cite references to back up claims that should be obvious to anyone who reads, I have to say its available to anyone who wants to seek it out.

    How old are you?

    Do you read much?

  • Howard

    KYS, natural law dictates that children should be born with both a mother and a father because that is what is best for society.

    Religion should only mimic natural law.

    If religion agrees with natural law, that should be interpreted as a coincidence.

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    Hmm, well, with comment 65, you lost me forever towards coming to see your point of view Howard. Count my vote towards your ideological opponent.

    Sex outside of marriage has been going on since before there ever was marriage. It occurred in the 50’s, it occurred in the 1800’s, it occurred in the 1500’s, etc.

    But even if we decide to set aside all realistic facets of human nature and just decide to go with your concept of forced morality…..you would advocate that sex is evil.

    Not an ideological I care to buy into!

  • KYS

    Howard,

    I’m not doing your homework for you. You’ve made some pretty strong claims you don’t seem capable of supporting with any facts.

    Peddle your wares in a more ignorant camp.

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    KYS, natural law dictates that children should be born with both a mother and a father because that is what is best for society.

    statistical proof please, or links at least to back up your claim that natural law dictates what is best for society.

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    Religion should only mimic natural law.

    Wow, perhaps you should sit down with the Pope and with Christan leaders in this country and tell them the purpose of religion.

  • Howard

    I feel I am dealing with a series of moronic statements.

    Do you also want me to prove that the earth is not flat?

  • KYS

    Howard says: “I feel I am dealing with a series of moronic statements.”

    Finally we’re in agreement!

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    I don’t need you to prove that the earth is flat, however I would like you to prove your claim that you know best, what the purpose of religion should be, and since ‘natural law’ is actually ambiguous, I’d like to see proof that you think it’s best for society.

  • Howard

    The proof can be seen if you stop focusing on your groin area and look at what is happening in the rest of the world.

  • http://www.landofthefreehomeofthebrave.org/wp/ Margaret Romao Toigo

    Howard writes, “It is a historical fact that for the past four decades, there has been an epidemic of teen pregnancies, unwed mothers, single-parent families, genital herpes, gonorrhea, AIDS, prostitution, pedophilia, pornography, etc, caused by a libertine culture encouraging people to let their minds be controlled by urges emanating from between their legs.”

    Perception being reality, nevermind the veracity of the statement itself, I am curious to know what those people who believe such things think we should do about it. Education, legislation or perhaps mandatory chastity belts for the unmarried (nowadays they could be really high-tech with biometric locks, the ability to log attempted break-ins and sensors that trigger an electric shock whenever the wearer becomes aroused)?

    I have read these sort of complaints before, but none of the people who make them ever seem to have any suggestions for solutions to the alleged increasing prevalence of these “evils” (also missing are the factual, historical references in support of these assertions, but that is another matter).

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    The proof can be seen if you stop focusing on your groin area and look at what is happening in the rest of the world.

    I’m not even thinking of my groin in this discussion. Apparently what this is saying is that you have nothing to substantiate your claim that commenter Howard knows what the Purpose of Religion should be. You would clearly like to define religion to meet an agenda, however I think a higher being might take issue with that.

    THroughout history the life expectancy of humans was much shorter than it is now. It was due to all kinds of diseases, viruses and what you would call ‘natural law’ (I’m assuming, since you refuse to define it).

    Since it has been prevalent since the dawn of man, I can only assume that it is actually part of natural law, rather than counter to it. But of course, with your refusal to elaborate and instead make an assumption about where my own thoughts lie, we will never know what you mean.

  • Howard

    Margaret, I am curious to know why the people who got us here now want others to come up with solutions.

    Of course, the easy way out is to say, “what problem”?

    The people who got us here are those who, starting around the mid-sixties, have used sex to sell everything from cars to cigarettes and have used sexual content in more and more titillating movies and TV programs.

    That is part of the problem and their profit motive is understood.

    But those who did not raise any voice against what Hollywood was doing to our culture, are the Liberals who couldn’t get enough of the Hollywood smut.

    For the simple-minded who cannot see the forest for the trees, I offer a simple fable.

    It is claimed that if you put a frog into a pot of boiling water, it will leap out to escape the danger.

    But if you put a frog in a kettle that is filled with water that is cool and pleasant, and then you gradually heat the kettle until it starts boiling, the frog will not become aware of the threat until it is too late.

    Like us, the frog’s instincts are geared towards detecting sudden changes, not slowly changing trends.

    Let’s say that every year, movies and TV programs show more and more risqué sexual situations and stimulate the mind in other ways that are antithetical to a morality that is conducive to acceptable behavior.

    A person would have realized there was a problem, if 40 years ago, a daytime TV program suddenly showed two adults jumping in bed and bouncing the springs.

    It took 40 years to get here and the liberalization of our culture can be laid at the feet of the Liberals.

    Now, they say, “what problem”?

  • KYS

    “A person would have realized there was a problem, if 40 years ago, a daytime TV program suddenly showed two adults jumping in bed and bouncing the springs.”

    Peyton Place had lots of sex, didn’t it? OH MY! They were having sex right smack in the middle of the day! Trust me, we’ve all been aware of the whole ‘sex’ thing for a while (insert meaningless comment about thinking with my groin here)

    Times change, my friend. With progress comes the responsibility of making adjustments.

    How many TVs do you have, Howard? Just curious.

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    For those who would blame all the evils on Hollywood, consider Africa where AIDS and a host of other communicable diseases run rampant, and they don’t even watch Hollywood.

    I don’t care to watch a lot of hollywood content, but I sure don’t need someone else trying to play parent to me and telling me what I should and shouldn’t watch so as to control behavior.

  • Howard

    Everyone is entitled to control their own sexual urges.

    Just be aware of the consequences when our media encourages children to stop controlling theirs.

  • http://www.landofthefreehomeofthebrave.org/wp/ Margaret Romao Toigo

    Well, Howard, those who ask, “what problem?” don’t see any need for a solution. And don’t blame me, I was born in 1963 and was not eligible to vote until 1981.

    The television networks and the film studios are just giving the public what it wants and asks for with its collective wallet. They didn’t create the demand, they supplied it.

    What gets me is how people complain about how “…TV programs show more and more risqué sexual situations and stimulate the mind in other ways that are antithetical to a morality that is conducive to acceptable behavior,” and yet they cannot demonstrate a direct causality between racy entertainment and any social problem.

    The other thing that gets me is when people assert that life in these United States was somehow better in the 1950s than it is now. We have it better today than we ever did in all of our history.

    Compared to even the 1980s, let alone right now, the 1950s was a dark age of racism, oppression illiteracy and ignorance — and hardly anyone would want to go back to the realities of those days that were nothing like their depictions in television and films.

  • Dan

    “Undoubtedly, the promise of a miracle is cut short, but simultaneously the potential of a better future is given back.”

    Amen sister! I’ve always thought that guys like Ted Kennedy, and Harry Reid have the potential to “come around”. But It would be a miracle. If we could simply eliminate them, just think how bright the future would be!

  • Howard

    Yes, Margaret, there is a problem.

    The television networks and the film studios give the public what the television networks and the film studios want to give us.

    They have the money and the organization to do it. Americans have never organized over a period of 40 or 50 years and they have been boiled like the metaphorical frog.

    The public did not create the demand — Hollywood and TV programs supplied it.

    If you cannot see a direct causality between racy entertainment and social problem, you are wearing blinders.

    Many aspects of life in these United States were much better in the 1950s than now. We may be better off today economically, but culturally, we are in a sewer.

    The “music” stinks, the movies are rotten, and the pervasive pornography sucks kids into what they think is “hip“ behavior.

    We solved racism by enacting laws to correct the problem. That could have been done without destroying our culture.

    Illiteracy and ignorance have increased. Kids glued to TV programs several hours a day don’t get smarter — but they do learn how to get their pants off in a hurry.

    To mention just a little bit of the better life, in the 1950’s a person could walk down the streets of any large city at night, house and car doors could be left unlocked, kids could ride their bikes on public streets without fear, sex crimes were rare, school teachers were in control of their classrooms, and parents didn’t let kids run amuck. The list goes on and on.

    Who would want to go back to the realities of those days?

    Anyone with a modicum of common sense.

  • KYS

    “Everyone is entitled to control their own sexual urges. Just be aware of the consequences when our media encourages children to stop controlling theirs.”

    Howard, the media to which American children are exposed is entirely under parental control. Stop trying to regulate the media and look towards sex ed, parental ed and adequate child care for all.

  • Howard

    I look and see nothing that works. We know that the prior methods worked.

  • Howard

    KYS:

    I don’t know who first said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”, but it’s true.

    And all you offer is an unprovable “cure”.

  • KYS

    Howard,

    You haven’t even proven your case despite requests from several of us. You have strong opinions and have expressed them repeatedly (stop thinking with your groins, people!) But I just don’t buy what you’re saying.

    Effective parenting is the only solution that will stand the test of time. Who knows what’s coming down the road? Today’s babies will encounter new challenges that you and I can’t anticipate. That’s true for every generation in a dynamic world such as ours.

    The prevention you want can be found by providing education and guidance to prepare kids for those challenges. As a fan of common sense, you should realize that you can never remove all potential dangers from a child’s path. So you teach them; don’t smoke, don’t drink and drive, pay attention in school, nurture your mind and body, pursue your bliss, perfect your talents, be a good person.

    A sheltered child, who doesn’t know how to make difficult choices, filter out the nonsense or develop a sense of self, simply won’t be as well equipped to navigate this world.

    You are exposed to the media every day here online. I assume you own a TV and read newspapers. You might have even read a few books. Yet you don’t seem to suffer the ill effects of the media. Why is that? What went right in your life?

    Prove your case: show me the correlation between the media and all the ills of society. You should have years of evidence to back your story. But since you won’t share it, at this point I have more faith in the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

  • Howard

    KYS,

    I look and see nothing you propose that works. We know that prior methods worked.

    All you offer is a “cure” which has never been proven.

    You propose “the only solution that will stand the test of time” — in place of what we know works.

    You reject what is proven and ask, “Who knows what’s coming down the road?“

    You admit you don’t have the answers. Which means you have a faith that’s known as “blind faith.”

    You say, “So you teach the kids; don’t smoke, don’t drink and drive, pay attention in school, nurture your mind and body, pursue your bliss, perfect your talents, be a good person.”

    Yah. Blah, Blah, Blah.

    You think that’s how kids learn?

    No. Preaching to kids doesn’t work. Kids learn by example. And when the kids of “hippie generation” parents grew up, they mimicked the parents. So we have an epidemic of teen promiscuity, teen pregnancies, kids on drugs, kids driving drunk.. you name it… If you can get something now, why wait? The current generation is infected with materialism and sex. Kids have a desire for instant gratification which they got from their “hippie culture” parents. As the twig is bent, so grows the tree.

    Now the Liberals who got us here won’t admit they are wrong, they want to “experiment more” and “see what comes down the road.”

    We are indeed exposed to the media every day.

    I don’t suffer the ill effects .Why is that? What went right in my life?

    Simple. I was fortunate enough not to have “hippie” parents with a libertine philosophy.

    I was taught by example. I am a product of my environment.

  • KYS

    Libertine? Is The King and I on HBO somewhere?

    So, you DO seem to agree with me that bad parenting produces these problems. Logic follows that GOOD parenting will decrease these problems.

    Thanks for proving my point.

    =)

  • Howard

    KYS, You just don’t get it.

    Kids learn by example.

    Good parenting is do as I do, not as I say.

  • KYS

    Yup, I agree. Good guidance (including example!) means good parenting.

    Media=one of any/many variables that can pose a challenge.

    Thanks again.

  • Howard

    KYS: You tend to miss the changes in our lives that have been introduced subtly over a long period of time. You don’t seem to understand the impact of TV and movies on our society and in particular, on our children.

    You have not looked back and realized that there are effects which are detrimental to society.

    They work silently to influence the way in which we interact with one another, and with society.

    One problem you want to ignore is deviant behavior in the media which is portrayed as acceptable and the resulting public acceptance of the deviant behavior.

    You have failed to look and seek the non-obvious changes or effects that are enabled by what is presented by Hollywood and the TV studios.

    Some change emerges from everything we see or hear. It is a process that can take years or decades. When we discover that a new medium has effects that might be detrimental to our society or culture, we must change what has taken place before the effects becomes pervasive.

    This we have been failing to do and have failed generation of children.

  • KYS

    Howard,

    Just because I don’t agree with your gloom and doom philosophy doesn’t mean I haven’t heard what you’re saying. I’ve made my point; parents are responsible for teaching their kids how to succeed in this world, no matter what the hurdles. You’ve supported my position (much to your chagrin, I’m sure). Get over it.

    Basta.

  • Howard

    KYS: It’s encouraging to hear that we think alike.

    But the hurdles you leave in place are too much for most families.

  • Brady Carothers

    someone said that christians are a minority in America in fact christians make up 76% of America thats more than 224 million wheras secualar or non religios only make up 13 percent these statistics are from 2004 check it out here
    By the way your history is way off Nick Kitamure
    you should go back to histroy class if you want to make any more claims about our fore fathers