Patterico's Pontifications

11/24/2008

A Reader Poses an Interesting Abortion Hypothetical

Filed under: Abortion — Patterico @ 7:02 pm

Over at my new reader-written blog The Jury Talks Back, poster Not Rhetorical posits a fascinating hypothetical:

Though I know a lot of people have zero patience for them, I can never really get enough of trippy philosophical hypotheticals.

Here’s one I’ve been toying with for years: Suppose the technology existed to safely remove a fetus from a womb at any gestational stage for incubation elsewhere until birth. If such “no-death abortion” was available to any woman who wanted it, would most abortion rights supporters stand down?

I’m especially interested in what abortion rights supporters have to say, because I’ve always thought that their position is based on opposition to forced pregnancy (”Keep your laws off my body”).

I especially love this hypothetical because I too have been thinking about the same issue for years. Indeed, I asked a modified version of it in this post. But Not Rhetorical’s articulation is less inflammatory and more conducive to good discussion.

I’m especially fond of the hypothetical because I explicitly discussed it recently with two women: the first night with one who was pro-choice, and the next night, with one who was pro-life. (To my surprise, the pro-choice woman would most assuredly not accept the sort of “no death abortion” that Not Rhetorical posits.)

I have told people since (and said to the pro-life woman) that I wish I could have had a camera over my shoulder taking footage when I was talking to these women. I respect both of the women very much, even though I violently disagreed with the pro-choice woman on this issue. But I found the contrast between their points of view — and the reasons for them — to be transcendent and profound in a way I’m not sure I could ever adequately express.

I don’t feel comfortable saying more, even without naming the women, because the conversations were private. But the conversation solidified my view that this particular hypothetical cuts right to the heart of the debate in a way that few others do.

I also very much liked Not Rhetorical’s suggestion for commenters: “I’d appreciate it if you could keep the usual stuff about murder and evil and so forth to a minimum. Like zero. I’m more interested in a dispassionate discussion.” Indeed. Every discussion about abortion devolves into one side screaming Abortion Evil! and the other side screaming Abortion Is a Right! That can get tiresome, and I’m looking for something that addresses the concerns raised by the specific hypothetical.

Thanks to Not Rhetorical for her excellent post.

P.S. If you’re not reading The Jury Talks Back, you’re missing out. Good stuff over there. There’s a button on the sidebar on the right, just under “Recent Comments,” that you can use to jump over there. Once you’re there, you can click a corresponding button to come back here.

Easy as pie. And man, that’s easy!

P.S. I will add this factor to the hypothetical: assume that the law absolutely assures mothers that they will never bear any legal responsibility for the child, whether financial or otherwise. Comments that refuse to make this assumption may be deleted. It’s a hypothetical, and making arguments that ignore the governing assumptions is counterproductive.

153 Responses to “A Reader Poses an Interesting Abortion Hypothetical”

  1. I am reluctantly pro choice since being a male and never having to face that type of decision, I can’t bring myself to tell a woman what she should do with her body, regardless of how I personally feel about the issue. At the same time the male partner has no legal say in the choice.

    I would think that the majority of both sides of the issue would consider this a win. I certainly do.

    My only question would be what party would assume the legal and financial obligation for the child.

    rls (14b9d3)

  2. I’m pro life, but to me this is another Pandora’s box (as are most moral type dilemnas)
    Each horn of the dilemna requires the opening of multiple and cascading Pandora’s boxes

    The best solution is still not to get pregnant (unwanted) in the first place, and then no one outside has to think about or mitigate all the possible sequences of human behavior that follow.

    SteveG (a87dae)

  3. __________________________________

    (To my surprise, the pro-choice woman would most assuredly not accept the sort of “no death abortion” that Not Rhetorical posits.)

    I’m not so surprised, certainly if the pro-choice woman is of the left. That’s because I’ve become increasingly aware of how ass-backwards, phony and non-compassionate quite a few liberals really are.

    After all, these are the people who surveys indicate are less generous than conservatives in donating time and money. The same people who are more likely to believe the US (certainly under a Republican White House) is cruel, greedy and imperialistic, while the Middle East, Russia or Cuba are merely sad, misunderstood underdogs.

    And speaking of animals, these are the same people who are super supportive of the government imposing laws on how animals are to be treated — again, the sad, misunderstood underdog, literally so — yet would rather be left in the dark (legally, if not also symbolically) if their teenaged daughter went to a doctor for an abortion. In that case, I guess the analogy is such people’s sentiments make them see the human — the fetus, in this case — being to a cat or dog what America is to the Middle East, Cuba or Russia.

    Once again, an ideology where everything is ass backwards, so that good becomes bad, and bad becomes good.
    __________________________________

    Mark (411533)

  4. It will change nothing. The pillar of “pro-choice” is not the woman’s bodily autonomy. It is that the child has no value. Or that society has no right to value it. Take your choice. Such a procedure will be opposed as much as “punishing a woman with a child” is opposed now.

    nk (5fa892)

  5. I am reluctantly pro choice since being a male and never having to face that type of decision, I can’t bring myself to tell a woman what she should do with her body, regardless of how I personally feel about the issue. At the same time the male partner has no legal say in the choice.

    I would think that the majority of both sides of the issue would consider this a win. I certainly do.

    My only question would be what party would assume the legal and financial obligation for the child.

    Assume the state will assume all obligations.

    Patterico (cc3b34)

  6. Position: Prolife (with only a life of the mother exception)

    On the hypothetical: I like the idea of this technology, and look forward to the day when we have it available.

    One thought that comes to mind in this currently hypothetical technology: would the father be allowed to step forward, say ‘yep, that’s mine’, possibly go through a paternity test, and then get the child to raise?

    James (a03dff)

  7. The hypothetical handles viability, but not liability.

    I love that you shield the woman, but not the man, (not to mention the State and the medical practioners) from liability.

    The issue remains, for me, a moral one. If it is a human life (being?), all protections must be provided. If it is not, keep the State the hell away from my body.

    Ed (281252)

  8. Assuming that he mother has already said ‘I do not want it’.

    James (a03dff)

  9. James, while I suppose we’re getting past the point of the hypo, I’m sure that if the state is raising a bunch of children it would be delighted to permit good people to adopt them… especially near relatives. I think assuming the rules of the foster system would apply makes sense, and I’m sure an interested father would be given some preference in adopting his kids if the state had them.

    This is a good hypo. Of course, we’re all really just waiting for a pro-choicer to advocate abortion anyway. And why? As said above, because fetuses are not valuable.. and even have a negative value.

    Perhaps such an argument would claim that we are overpopulated and the government shouldn’t needlessly support children that parents didn’t want. Heinous. I think such a technology would simply put abortion on par with infanticide. And we know some major democrats, ahem, support that practice as well.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  10. OK, get ready, here’s the answer:

    If such technology were available, the woman would be in exactly the same position as the following:

    Grizzly Adams lives in a cabin in the woods, far away from civilization. A roving band of criminals breaks into his cabin and leaves a baby in his home, and then they run away. Grizzly Adams cannot throw the baby into the garbage, because he would be tried for murder. He would be required to take care of the baby until he could deliver it to the state. As long as he was the only one that could provide nourishment to the baby, he would be responsible to do it.

    Some guy (fd7c16)

  11. How about moral responsibility? Other than that, I’ve commented over there.

    htom (412a17)

  12. I love how folks contort themselves in fallacious intellectual arguments to try and find middle ground where none really exists. Anything on this planet can be justified if enough intellectual contortions are allowed. ANYTHING, as evidence but all of man’s horrid crimes against man..

    And by the way, “forced pregnancy?” WTF Patterico is “forced pregnancy?”

    As a principle, I am against all “forced” anything but this logic is fax intellectualism that light weight lawyering gets us too.

    I am against “forced taxes,” forced fathering, forced …… lightweight.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  13. fax = faux

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  14. Is Tupac and Biggie coming backs?

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  15. What I find creepy about this hypo is the idea of a lab full of growing fetuses, and the kind of huge medical and social machinery you’d have to set up to run that operation. There are over a million abortions a year, many times more than you have families willing to adopt and more than enough to swamp the already straining foster care system.

    If you put this in operation for say ten years, what happens to the millions and millions of kids who aren’t adopted? Put them in a bunch of huge state orphanages? Kick them out when they hit 18 with no support structure except maybe some money for college? How much is this going to cost, and where will the money come from?

    I don’t have a problem with the hypo otherwise — if this fetus removal system was as quick as getting an abortion — but I think you have to think through the implications of a million plus new babys every year with no one to care for them but the state.

    Aplomb (b6fba6)

  16. Some guy, I agree with you that that is a very comparable position.

    Is it OK to expect a parent to care for the baby for the minimal amount of time it takes to get that baby to the government? Assuming that it’s as easy to get the Gov as it is to get to an abortionist, I’d say it’s hard to see why not if a fetus has any value at all. Of course, a slippery slope could come up where mothers are responsible for not having crack-addicted fetuses, but not in this hypo.

    We all have to give up things for others. I have to stop and help out if I see a bad car accident, for example. I think expecting a mother to give up her fetus, alive, instead of aborting it, is such a light burden… but I’m already predisposed to value fetuses.

    Da Shiznit, maybe you didn’t understand the hypo? Regardless, why are you talking about lawyers and evil?

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  17. I don’t believe it would make a difference. Women have abortions because they have been inconvenienced and an abortion ‘removes’ the inconvenience. It also, in theory, leaves no trail or evidence testifying that a life had existed thus enabling a woman to ‘move on’. If a woman is able to have the fetus removed and incubated til birth and then adoption or whatever, there would be a continual reminder and evidence of what she had growing within her and what she gave up. This is not a light matter. Its devastating having to come face to face with what one is willing to sacrifice for their own convenience.

    Abortion rights people want not demand the right to end in their inconvenience under the guise of reproductive rights but also the right to a clear conscience.

    It is that the child has no value.

    What a debacle – it has value if a pregnant woman is shot and the baby is killed. The criminal would be justly charged with murder. But if she wants to abort the baby, then it has no value….

    Dana (79a78b)

  18. Abortion rights people want not demand = Abortion rights people demand the right end their inconvenience…and the right to a clear conscience….

    Dana (79a78b)

  19. Dana, you’re right… the fetus only is valuable insofar as the mother cares about it (which is ridiculous).

    I think you’re also right that there is some kind of hidden motivation behind ending fetuses. It’s a sign of adulthood and permanence to have a child. Perhaps the aborting woman doesn’t like the father and doesn’t want their genes combined forever? Something like that, anyway, probably is going on some of the time. I know a lot of women have a deep problem with their husbands donating sperm. There is some kind of idea that your next generation is your special thing… something that you should have utter control over. Of course, this argument vanishes pretty quickly when we bring up the father’s rights. Then it’s just about the woman’s body.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  20. Aplomb, I think it would be awesome if a foster care reform system required (yeah, I know, no one will agree) state raised kids who are now adults to adopt and raise some other foster kids. This would only be if the state raised children who had this huge burden were given an excellent upbringing much unlike what they often get now.

    Wouldn’t this take care of much of the problem? Would-be aborted children would be raised by would-be aborted parents. Their love of their parents would help prevent any self esteem problems if they learned their actual mom’s intentions. I guess the hypo simply asserts that this isn’t an issue, and that’s fair enough for this discussion.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  21. Juan, it is an idiotic hypothetical in order to find some “understanding” in the debate.

    It is the stuff of 1st year law school with some intellectual lightweight prof and even more lightweight students. It is also the line of reasoning folks use to justify grotesque things in life.

    Hey George, what if the deeply immoral could be made more palatable by suspending our conscience, our morality and humane reasoning …….. well golly Bill then I would just do it!

    To discuss a hypothetical of bringing a child into this world with no mother is akin to making ourselves robots. To ask a women if harvesting her is OK is just bizarre. It is the stuff of Huxley.

    To those who think it scientifically possible nd a way to “stop” abortion the I can not imagine a more cruel and empty soul than one who thinks gestating humans like microbes under a heat lamp in order to “stop abortion” makes this A OK!

    For God sake, get a moral compass — something most lawyers lack. The Abortion issue is as simple as does a mother have the right to kill her children because ….

    And any women who has had a baby starts treating “the fetus” like her baby the second she finds out. It does not take her much time to figure out she is caring for two,

    The rest is intellectual masturbation by morons who want to be popular.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  22. Dana – The right to a clear conscience is a great way to describe it.

    JD (5f0e11)

  23. Which by the way Juan is why the “equal protection” clause in the Constitution is bull shit. We should just get rid of it and be intellectually honest.

    A perfectly viable 6 month old in-utero child can be discarded like my dump in the morning because … well, because……

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  24. Da shiz, I am passionately pro-life. I don’t need some extremely unpleasant sort on the internet to tell me to get a moral compass.

    But there are also people who are passionately pro-choice.

    For some people, it’s boring to just tell eachother we’re right and they’re wrong… so we try to come up with hypotheticals to get to the prcise points at which our disagreement stems.

    Patterico is much less trying to convince anyone on abortion as he is simply trying to learn why people feel the way they do. Re read this post, and you will agree.

    We’re just trying to learn what makes a pro-choicer tick. You seem to find learning offensive, so please go to fark.com and yell at somebody instead of staying here and being offended.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  25. @ Juan in Comment #9 at 8:15pm

    Perhaps such an argument would claim that we are overpopulated and the government shouldn’t needlessly support children that parents didn’t want.

    The people who would claim overpopulation are the same people who want open borders. Would businesses really need to import the 20mil ‘undocumented workers’ if we wouldn’t have had the 40mil abortions since 1973?

    (BTW, that sounds harsh to my ears, and I can’t seem to word it any other way. My apologies if it sounds rude.)

    James (a03dff)

  26. p.s. to clarify, while the abortion rights people demand the right to a clear conscience (no evidence, no trail left behind) and believe abortion provide that, it is just an illusion at best.

    Dana (79a78b)

  27. @ Some guy in Comment #10 @ 8:18pm

    Grizzly Adams lives in a cabin in the woods, far away from civilization.

    All you’ve done is rephrased the Thomson’s Violinist issue. See L4L (LIbertarians for Life) answer to that.

    James (a03dff)

  28. “The people who would claim overpopulation are the same people who want open borders. Would businesses really need to import the 20mil ‘undocumented workers’ if we wouldn’t have had the 40mil abortions since 1973?”

    James – See, we could close the borders and deal with Aplomb’s issue of an army of unwanted 18 year olds under this scenario. All of a sudden we have a horde of people theoretically willing to do the jobs that (ahem) some people claim Americans are unwilling to do.

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  29. James, you’re right to point out that hypocrisy, and I agree that overpopulation is not a good reason to kill people or abort fetuses.

    Not sure what else to say… Abortion is full of hypocrisies. Many pro-choice advocates are also staunchly opposed to the death penalty because life is inherently precious… and some even think it’s wrong to eat meat. Of course, we all are victims of our own bias.

    Oh, and you don’t come across as harsh to me.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  30. Some Guy #10:

    You have completely misunderstood the hypothetical.

    To put it succinctly: what if there were a way to end a pregnancy and remove any legal, financial, or moral obligation from the woman, and yet the fetus would continue to gestate? What if a woman could walk away from a pregnancy without terminating the life of the fetus?

    Would that make terminating the fetus unnecessary? Or would you still want the fetus to be terminated?

    Steverino (db5760)

  31. steverino, I think you misunderstand Some Guy. Either that of I do.

    Even if you can get a fetus removed, you still have to go and get that done. Is it ok to require a mother to do that instead of killing the fetus? Similarly, is it ok to ask the Grizzly fella to care for a baby for a trivial amount of time before the government can take over instead of killing it?

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  32. One of the beneficial side effects of this approach is in causing research into “fetal care.”

    That is, we do reasonably well with ‘premies’ now. We have some success with ‘extreme premies.’

    But there isn’t an organized push for research into this area. There just aren’t that many labors that (through accident or nature) go sufficiently awry that we end up with an extremely premature baby.

    But, what if we’re saying this is the fine line:
    The woman has the privilege of having the fetus removed. (A ‘no fault divorce’) The fetus has the right to the best medicine can offer her immediately after removal.

    I like to think there’d be a lot of support for research into keeping the fetus alive.

    Lois McMaster Bujold has written about this topic in a non-confrontational fashion in a long-running science fiction series. There’s a “uterine replicator,” and natural childbirth is shunned. She discusses potential impacts on a couple types of society. (She isn’t the first, I just think she has some interesting takes on this.)

    Al (b624ac)

  33. “P.S. I will add this factor to the hypothetical: assume that the law absolutely assures mothers that they will never bear any legal responsibility for the child, whether financial or otherwise. Comments that refuse to make this assumption may be deleted. It’s a hypothetical, and making arguments that ignore the governing assumptions is counterproductive.”

    We must first assume that all attorney’s have been aborted with success, right?

    Ed said the rest, what about the assumed father or the subsequent real father?

    Anybody ever stop to think that not ALL conceived homo sapiens should be brought to life? I suppose I’m a bit tainted by a grandmother that was an OB nurse for 43 years and hearing some of her tales.

    But the continued reality 101 is that neither the Govt. or my neighbor has any business between my needs, Dr. or feelings or my bed sheets either. None, zilch, nada, EVER! No not EVER!! See, you may not “approve” of my desires/needs, but I could care less, I probably do not approve of some that you do as well.

    #19 Juan, gonna poke you here…It’s a sign of adulthood and permanence to have a child.

    Uh no, it’s a sign of a successful breeding, any idiot can do such. Too many women today use it as anchor with which to trap a mate and bind them into forced servitude till they are secure, then cast them out as they would the daily trash. Breed N bleed or seed n feed.

    #21 seems to also get it. Sans this “The Abortion issue is as simple as does a mother have the right to kill her children because ….” Probably should read unborn or potential children.

    One more time here, IT IS JUST NOT YOUR BUSINESS AT ALL!!! YOU DO NOT HAVE A RIGHT or even a NEED TO KNOW!!! ever!!!

    TC (0b9ca4)

  34. TC – I love how you got with the spirit of the hypothetical!

    Why did you even bother to post?

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  35. I am reluctantly pro choice since being a male and never having to face that type of decision, I can’t bring myself to tell a woman what she should do with her body

    It all comes down to how you choose to frame the question. Framed like that, the answer can only go one way. But that’s a curious way of framing it as the decision impacts many more people than the woman, even if you assume, as you do, that there is no human child involved.

    Subotai (645c9e)

  36. “I suppose I’m a bit tainted by a grandmother”

    TC – Was she a selfish mental midget who shouted “listen to me” all the time, as well, or what accounts for your obnoxious behavior?

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  37. Anybody ever stop to think that not ALL conceived homo sapiens should be brought to life?

    Sure. But we’re a long way from having to worry about that happening.

    Subotai (645c9e)

  38. A few problems with the hypothetical.

    Alive and healthy are two different things, for one. Babies that don’t develop naturally may not develop as well, although there might be, depending on the usefullness of the technology, reverse select situations where getting the baby the hell out of dodge may avert some kinds of morbidity or fetal demise.

    How dangerous is the procedure vs alternatives, to the pregnant woman? What if it is more dangerous than a conventional abortion, or has unique risks, creating a situation where persons can’t choose the safest or desirable course of action?

    FOr example, would a woman with an ectopic pregnancy be forced to have major abdominal surgery, when a few doses of methotrexate would spare the associated risks?

    The hypothetical would have to be a “perfect” situation where there were no unique risks, no extra risk to the individual woman, no unknowns or risks greater to the fetus than being left in the womb till natural birth, and that’s just impossible.

    SarahW (a6e80b)

  39. And it seems utterly futile and ridiculous in cases where there are severe or lethal malformations already.

    SarahW (a6e80b)

  40. Re the hypothetical – my reservation about is is the same as I saw with rls’s comment. It’s a bit excessively focused on the woman. But that could be altered easily enough as long we’re playing with our imagination.

    I think the next question is; If this were somehow possible, how many women would chose to bear and rear children? That seems to be the crux of the matter here. Increasing numbers of Western women do not want to do these things. Which is to say, they don’t want to be women.

    Subotai (645c9e)

  41. and that’s just impossible.

    In a hypothertical, anything is possible. Just go with the hypothetical.

    Subotai (645c9e)

  42. Even if you can get a fetus removed, you still have to go and get that done. Is it ok to require a mother to do that instead of killing the fetus?

    That’s nonsense, Juan. If a mother wishes to abort a fetus, she still has to go and get that done. I don’t see how going for one procedure is a burden but going for another procedure is not.

    Similarly, is it ok to ask the Grizzly fella to care for a baby for a trivial amount of time before the government can take over instead of killing it?

    That’s not how I read #10. I read it as Grizzly Adams has now been forced to care ad infinitum for a child which isn’t his and nothing he did made it come about. That’s very different from the hypothetical Patterico wrote about.

    Steverino (db5760)

  43. SarahW, with all due respect, unless you think Patterico is about to introduce his biomedical engineering invention that actually does what this hypo discusses, then those practical problems don’t matter.

    the point of the hypo is the core value of a fetus or an abortion. What’s going on when someone chooses to kill a fetus? Etc. The hypo is a tool to get there by eliminating most of the variable problems that can be used to distract us from the real issue. All the stuff you bring up about health of the fetus, legal problems, etc. are such distractions that we are avoiding on purpose.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  44. Steverino, as I thought, you indeed did misunderstand.

    Grizzly isn’t to care for the baby forever. That would not make any sense.

    You’re right that getting an abortion and getting a baby removed are, under the original hypo, similar burdens. But not being able to chose the abortion is a unique burden. Having to take your child to the government, against your will, is the burden that is similar to caring for the child until the government can take over (I realize these are drastically different levels of burden).

    Anyway, the point is that Grizzly doesn’t have a choice. He can’t kill the baby… he has to elect to save it until the government can take it (even if that’s a very easy task). Is that ok? I think that is the crux of the matter.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  45. [...] Compatable Abortions A Patterico reader has suggested…. Here’s one I’ve been toying with for years: Suppose the technology [...]

    Life Compatable Abortions « Something should go here, maybe later. (d0f290)

  46. Assume the state will assume all obligations.

    Also assume that pro-lifers are usually also anti-tax people and the hypothetical collapses.

    America could already set up a system where unwanted children were cared for decently by the state, but we don’t.

    Because the pro-life folks squeal like stuck pigs whenever taxes are raised.

    parsnip (1e884c)

  47. Parsnip-
    Quit snipping and just answer the hypo, since you’ve obviously managed to ignore the ton of support pro life folks *do* offer to crisis pregnancy mothers.

    My bet is that, unless there was a way to make it 100% untraceable to the mother, most pro-abortion folks wouldn’t go for this.

    There’d still be the evidence of their “accident” or “problem.”

    Foxfier (db0f51)

  48. “America could already set up a system where unwanted children were cared for decently by the state, but we don’t.”

    parsnip – What are you talking about specifically – Federal, state or privately run systems?

    daleyrocks (5d22c0)

  49. The average pro-lifer would have o kick in at least an extra $20,000 a year in voluntary taxes to support such a plan, fox.

    Given the choice, how man pro-lifers would check the the box their tax return that raised their income taxes $20,000 a year to support it?

    But, to answer the question, if such a method was available, I doubt many doctors would still perform abortions, and few mothers would opt for them.

    parsnip (1e884c)

  50. Parsnip-
    Nice on pulling numbers out of the air, since we don’t know how many kids would be in the program, how many would be adopted, how many would be fostered, and how many would die– because, sadly enough, a lot of kids *do* die.

    Go look up “Snowflake” babies some time.

    Foxfier (db0f51)

  51. Trolls like parsnip must feel compelled to be mendoucheous. You godbothering anti-tax jesus freaks will just have to deal with it.

    JD (5f0e11)

  52. I believe the technical term for the person who proposed the hypothetical question is “concern troll.”

    The small government conservatives who are pretending they would support the most massive expansion of the federal government in history are just being less than honest.

    A typical day on the internets.

    parsnip (1e884c)

  53. The small government conservatives who are pretending they would support the most massive expansion of the federal government in history are just being less than honest.

    *dryly* You do realize that one of the most popular responses to women who feel they’re not “ready” for kids is “put the kid up for adoption,” right? And that many states have a program to drop off unwanted babies? (you should– it’s been on the news the last few days because of a poorly worded law that resulted in teens being dropped off…..)

    Foxfier (db0f51)

  54. *doubletake*

    JD!

    Glad to see you about!

    Foxfier (db0f51)

  55. The news is also full abused foster kids, fox.

    Seems like there’s one raped or murdered every week in my neck of the woods.

    And the news is also full of the government departments in charge of looking after those kids cutting back on staff because of tax cuts.

    After the last round of cuts, each bureaucrat is now responsible for monitoring the wellbeing of a couple hundred kids each.

    In other words, a quick check once every year or so is the best a child can hope for within our current foster care system.

    And god help the government flunky who guesses wrong.

    parsnip (1e884c)

  56. _____________________________

    But the continued reality 101 is that neither the Govt. or my neighbor has any business between my needs, Dr. or feelings or my bed sheets either.

    Well, that government (at least in the state of Calif) now tells owners of horses that they don’t have the right to sell their animals to rendering plants.

    Now I’m aware that even when abortion was illegal, a number of people flouted the law. With that in mind, I certainly don’t mind the idea (and reality) of quite a few owners of animals (pets or otherwise) treating fussy, nanny-state laws regarding Fido or Secretariat in a similar manner.

    Mark (411533)

  57. 55.The news is also full abused foster kids, fox.

    And abused genetic kids, and abused elders, and raped-by-teachers school kids of unknown family.

    And the news is also full of the government departments in charge of looking after those kids cutting back on staff because of tax cuts.

    Amazingly, that’s one of the few things I *haven’t* seen. Reduce support for random programs? Yeah. Reduce support for orphaned (which, by the hypo, these kids would legally be) kids?
    No.

    Mark -
    It’s a US-wide law.
    My mom has been pissed since day one.
    It’s also illegal to euthanize said horses.
    There have already been many horses found with the area where a brand would usually be sliced off, and them left limping around.

    Foxfier (db0f51)

  58. The average pro-lifer would have o kick in at least an extra $20,000 a year in voluntary taxes to support such a plan

    Now I don’t mind your hard-nosed cynicism or acceptance of harsh reality if you’re a conservative. But if you’re actually one of those phony-baloney bleeding hearts of the left, who love getting teary eyed over homeless people, misunderstood felons, unwed teen mothers, gang members (in need of after-school programs!), the undocumented, etc, etc, then I request you at least be honest about what motivates you and what really is at the core of your political philosophy.

    Incidentally, I view the abortion controversy the same way I perceived — several years ago, since it’s no longer legally or politically relevant — the issue of school busing for integration purposes, certainly if it involved a case of de-facto segregation instead of de-jure. Simply put, having the public sector fuss and meddle over such things ultimately won’t work. That’s because most people will worm their way out of having to deal with legal requirements and restrictions of these particular personal, complex matters, be it judges forcing little Johnny and Susie across town on buses, or laws that force doctors and their patients to accept or reject very personal, private medical decisions and procedures.

    I just want people to be 100% honest with themselves about what is at the core of their emotions regarding the issue of abortion, and why they favor society dealing with it one way or the other.

    Mark (411533)

  59. It’s a US-wide law.
    My mom has been pissed since day one.

    And my perceptions of the abortion controversy have been affected by society’s growing nanny-state fussiness over the way animals — including friggin horses and geese (anti-pate laws!) — are being treated.

    And when Americans think they’re becoming so much more humane, so much more decent, so much kinder, so much nicer, so much more wonderful, so much more modern and progressive because they’re growing more teary eyed over the treatment of dogs and cats — and animals in general — even more so if they’re also becoming increasingly blase about the abortion of human fetuses (eg, voters in Calif not caring that underaged girls don’t have to receive legal consent from their parent or guardian when seeking an abortion), that is the essence of ass-backwards morality and compassion.

    Mark (411533)

  60. I’m halfway – I support first-trimester abortions, but nothing later short of immediate danger to the mother.

    I don’t see this as a tax issue, parsnip. You seem quite content to consign near-term babies to death, but the thought that they might be a drain on public coffers is a huge problem. I’d imagine pro-life people could probably raise enough money to endown the program. Do you have any idea how much money anti-abortion groups raise?

    I can’t see a problem with this proposal. With a bit of creative training, you could train people with specific vocational skills for a large company in exchange for sponsorship.

    OmegaPaladin (df0d78)

  61. There’s all the makings of a great distopian novel in this thread: disembodied wombs producing an army of cheap labor…very Dickens meets H.G. Wells….

    Bob Loblaw (6d485c)

  62. If the fetus can be transported to artificial support and if the woman has no legal responsibility nor may I add no legal rights thereafter I can see no moral nor ethical objections that could be made.

    The second the fetus leaves the woman’s body it is no longer part of it and has a independent legal existance and all the rights of any other citizen,

    Besides the fetus is not really part of the woman’s body DNA from it does not match the DNA of the mother.

    Dan Kauffman (c260a1)

  63. I think “Brave New World” (and “Logan’s Run”) dealt with part of this issue and we’ve forgotten the stories’ point: the dehumanizing effect of babies being “bred” and raised in artificial wombs and nurseries. This was all for the convenience of a pleasure-seeking culture, or a culture in which an all-powerful government determined what each person was and what function he performed. The outcome of this was uniformly negative, for obvious reasons. Life is not solely about our pleasure and convenience and function; it is about free will, struggle, hard work, pain and pleasure, and bringing forth the next generation. We may not all participate in that but without it, what are we? We cannot exercise free will if we deny ourselves the responsibilities of it.

    That said, my guess is the pro-life woman believes the pro-choice side would stand down because, to her, the hypothetical solves the inconvenience of gestation and birth of unwanted children for pro-choicers. (I don’t believe the pro-life woman likes the hypothetical because of the reasons in my first paragraph. Pro-lifers believe in free will and responsibility.) My guess is the pro-choice woman objected to the hypothetical but for different reasons – while it provides for care for unwanted embryos and fetuses, this is not the true reason that pro-choicers are actually pro-abortion. It would be unacceptable because she wants no progeny born that she has not specifically chosen; because the life she chooses to birth has meaning and the life she chooses to abort does not; because actions should be divorced from consequences; but also because abortion rights are not just about life and convenience but because pro-choicers’ stance on it has become a philosophical way of life on which all political and moral principles rest. Any woman who has been pro-choice (I was, when I was a lefty), knows this. Take away the need for abortion and you have removed the bedrock of liberal philosophy. I could go into the whole control-freak aspect of pro-choicers’ temperaments but that’s another issue. Suffice it to say that pro-choicers are terrified by the prospect of indiscriminate human breeding. They really do not like humanity.

    Just my ideas. Incidentally I also adore hypotheticals, often more than dealing with reality…

    Peg C. (48175e)

  64. Although it might not be fully in the spirit of the hypothetical, an unintended consequence would be the end of young women carrying to term babies they intend to deliver to give up for adoption. They would be likely to opt for this procedure instead. I am particularly aware of the women, and grateful for them. One of them in particular.

    By the way, those of you concerned about the cost. Don’t forget that people pay great sums to adopt babies. My daughter cost me $10 K. Best money I ever spent, tho I have 2 typically created babies.

    So much for that “how many babies have you adopted, pro-lifer,” crap.

    Dale (46b333)

  65. Medical Science is pushing the boundry of neonatal viability back further and further, this is not an invalid scenerio at some time in the future,

    For those who object to artificial gestation the question would be where exactly is the line you don’t want crossed?

    Dan Kauffman (c260a1)

  66. TC,

    One more time here, IT IS JUST NOT YOUR BUSINESS AT ALL!!! YOU DO NOT HAVE A RIGHT or even a NEED TO KNOW!!! ever!!!

    What if I’m the father of the child? Is it my business then? It is if the child is born, right?

    Pablo (99243e)

  67. Personally, I think that any discussion about abortion should be done with active healthy three year old children in the room.

    As for the ex-uterine hypothesis, it presupposes that society should take up the burden of raising these children or some how ensure that they are adopted. What if the children have genetic diseases, etc?

    Jack (d9cbc5)

  68. I’ve never known a liberal who opposes the Chinese policy and even Pat Robertson defended it. Assumedly, the hypo would allow for women to have a dozen offspring a year. White liberals would oppose the procedure on those grounds and I would oppose it as well because groups with parasite agendas to devour other groups would be pressured by their Imans and la raza spokesmen to have as much offspring as possible.

    jcurtis (afbc97)

  69. Look, I’m almost 60. The roe v. wade ruling took place when I was a young woman. I believed then and I believe now, women were either dumb or sold a bill of goods (same thing). Women were told go out, have “free” love, have sex with anyone, expose yourself to all kinds of diseases, violence, get pregnant, have a dangerous surgical procedure performed on you with little knowledge of even the dangers of anethesia explained to you, and keep doing this. And don’t hold any man accountable for any child you may produce (or even for your wellbeing, afterall it is free love). Now, all these years later, abortion is a thriving business, making all kinds of money, and I can only assume that the embryonic stem cell research plugs into this somehow (harvesting embryo’s for experimentation?). Always follow the money and there is a lot of money to be made in the abortion industry. And women are still lining up for more of the same. I hope we come to our senses before I die.

    Judith (76ca0a)

  70. The hypothetical, like any analogy, only has a few points of comparison. It’s not intended to illuminate everything at once in the abortion question. So I see no point to all the argument about other consequences and costs. The real point is to try to determine what the *real motive* for abortion is.

    IS it really just to shed the baby and the inconvenience? Or is the point of abortion to make sure the baby is dead? In my experience with pro-choice liberals it’s very important to make sure the baby is dead. Any other fate for the child is unacceptable.

    Adoption is out because it would require the mother to endure 9 months of discomfort (the dumb Grizzly Adams hypo above).

    But even this hypothetical early-delivery option would be rejected because, even if all responsibilities for the child are absolved, the poor woman would still know in her heart (assuming she has one) that she has a child out there somewhere, and she shouldn’t have to carry that knowledge the rest of her life.

    No, the majority of the pro-choicers I know would vote against this hypothetical technology for all the cost and complications mentioned above. But the REAL reason would be this: It might be a dead baby… but it’s MY dead baby.

    Gesundheit (9ca635)

  71. The quote I heard and still haven’t gotten over was: “Why not consider adoption?” “I’d rather it was dead than know it was out there somewhere.”

    rhodeymark (1aaf2a)

  72. But not being able to chose the abortion is a unique burden. Having to take your child to the government, against your will, is the burden that is similar to caring for the child until the government can take over (I realize these are drastically different levels of burden).

    You are missing the point of the hypothetical.

    The whole point of the it is to separate the death of the fetus from the termination of the pregnancy. If it were possible to terminate the pregnancy immediately without any harm to the fetus, and if that fetus were no longer the responsibility of the woman who conceived it, would someone who favored abortion rights take this course instead of terminating the fetus?

    “Having to take your child to the government against your will” in this particular hypothetical is IDENTICAL to “having to take your child to the abortion clinic against your will.”

    You can dance around the idea of being “forced” to carry a fetus for some infinitessimal time as a burden, but the reality is that no matter which path is chosen, the woman must carry the fetus for some amount of time until the issue is resolved. In other words, this is a red herring. It has nothing to do with the point of the hypothetical. So, address the hypo: if there were some parallel technology that allowed a woman to terminate a pregnancy without actually harming the fetus, what objection would someone who favored abortion have to such technology?

    Steverino (69d941)

  73. I have to admit that my first thoughts were of Aldous Huxley. Beyond that, I was trying to estimate the market for babies. I know from personal experience how difficult and expensive it is to adopt a baby in America. Various concern trolls posters above have alluded to the cost and abuse of ‘foster’ kidse here in the USA, which may be true. However, we are talking about babies here, and let’s be frank – they are more valuable than troubled 14-year-olds.

    There are already around a quarter-million or so adoptions per year, and that is even with the onerous requirements and high expense – $25 – 40K for most. Plus, many women spend that amount on fertility treatments trying to have their own baby.

    Given the tax advantages, I’d bet that a million or so yuppie couples would adopt these farm-raised babies, so fret ye not about who will care for the children. Women want babies, and these are babies. We wouldn’t have to go to Guatemala or China for them. It’s amazing and ironic that many Democrats are against free trade and abortion both, while the latter actually creates demand for cheap imports – of babies.

    I like the hypothetical, but can’t say how others would answer. I would be in favor of this.

    carlitos (84e862)

  74. And the strikeout fails me again.

    “Various concern trolls posters” = Various concern trolls posters.

    carlitos (84e862)

  75. Why won’t it work? “concern trolls” was strikethrough in the preview. Ugh.

    carlitos (84e862)

  76. A bit off OT, but I think this hypothetical procedure would be tantamount to child abuse without a complete overhaul of our child adoption system as it exists today.

    Also, bear in mind kids that over 40% of abortions are performed on single black mothers. For those caught up in how death row is racist because it dispropotionally affects african americans, I find it seriously hypocritical they don’t see the same with abortion.

    But always consider unintended consequences when looking at something like this. More than a few social scientists (including the authors of Freakonomics) have pointed to the effect Abortion has had in lowering and keeping down the violent crime rate in the US.

    If all those aborted babies, are now being raised in orphanages, foster, and group homes, does that mean a huge spike in crime could occur?

    Not advocating either way, just asking questions and stirring the pot.

    Joeboy (a8060f)

  77. The s tag doesn’t work, carlitos. You’ve got to add “trike” to make it strike.

    Pablo (99243e)

  78. Normal text.

    Text with “s” tag using button.

    Text with “s” tag manually typed out.

    Text with “strike” manually typed out.

    What’s weird is that all of the above lines except the ‘normal text’ shows as strikethrough in the preview.

    Back on topic, Mr. stir-the-pot “Joeboy” – why in the world do all these kids have to grow up in foster or group homes? Why don’t you believe there will be enough demand for adoption?

    carlitos (84e862)

  79. Your hypothetical sounds expensive.

    If a woman could afford your incubation contraption then perhaps she would keep her own baby to full term and then raise it properly.

    Your incubation contraption sounds great for people who have money, and choose a parent who wants to part with their baby and then adopt that chosen baby.

    What does the poor pregnant woman who will not be selected by the rich person do if she can not carry to full term?

    Why would any person who supports the right to choose “stand down” based on this hypothetical?

    Oiram (983921)

  80. assume that the law absolutely assures mothers that they will never bear any legal responsibility for the child, whether financial or otherwise.

    Oiram, Patterico addressed above your concern re financial responsibility.

    Dana (79a78b)

  81. I’m amused that so many people want to read far more into the hypothetical than really exists.

    The question is simple: is abortion fundamentally about a woman being able to walk away from a pregnancy, or is it fundamentally about terminating an unwanted life?

    The more people try to obfuscate the hypothetical with side issues, the more I am convinced that abortion isn’t about the former at all, it is about the latter.

    Steverino (69d941)

  82. Thanks Dana, I see that now.

    Then I ask this: Where are all of these incubated children going to end up? We’re talking hypothetical here so I guess you could say hypothetically that the “Law” will provide for them……. o.k.

    Dana, Patterico if you decide to adopt one of these incubated baby’s would you adopt one that had HIV or was addicted to heroin at birth? If you say yes, then I commend you. But do you think all people well off enough to adopt would make that decision?

    If all of these “hypothetical” incubated babies were guaranteed to have an adopted parent regardless of their health, gender, or race then perhaps most pro choicers would “stand down”. I would, as long as this program wasn’t paid for by my taxes :)

    Oiram (983921)

  83. #81 Steverino, I love how you and the hypothetical here assumes that abortion is that simple.

    “The question is simple: is abortion fundamentally about a woman being able to walk away from a pregnancy, or is it fundamentally about terminating an unwanted life?”

    Sometimes it’s both, and sometimes it’s about a thousand other reasons.

    Regardless it’s about choice, even under the above stated hypothetical scenario.

    It’s good to be American.

    Oiram (983921)

  84. I have heard women who have had an abortion, when asked the question “did you think about having it and giving it up for adoption?” answer: “oh, no, I could never have given it up.”

    I’m not sure a woman who thinks this way would go for the hypothetical “no-death abortion,” as it would be too close to the real-world option of giving the child up for adoption, which she has already rejected as too emotionally difficult.

    Missy (939906)

  85. #84 Missy the Woman you are referring to are not the sharpest tools in our collective shed.

    In the real world can you assume that every child who would of been otherwise aborted will be able to find a home?

    Oiram (983921)

  86. Shit! I am a naive, innocent idiot. I thought that libs simply did not give (sufficient) value to the child that outweighed the inconvenience to the mother. I did not realize that they had a “It’s better off dead” philosophy, as demonstrated by the creepazoids who have shown up here.

    nk (5fa892)

  87. Oiram, most of these women are quite intelligent (the conversations mostly took place in college). But that is not relevant. What is relevant is that these women didn’t want to have a baby nor did they want to give the baby up *to anyone* for adoption. So they chose to abort.

    I’m not convinced they’d have gone for Patterico’s hypothetical even if it had come with a guarantee that every child would be adopted and well-cared-for. Because, I repeat, the reasoning was that it would be too difficult for *them* to give the child up. It had nothing to do with what would have happened to the child.

    Missy (939906)

  88. nk, hope you’re not lumping me in with the creepazoids. I’m just repeating what pro-choice women have told me in the past. I certainly don’t see any moral clarity or logic in any of it.

    Missy (939906)

  89. #81 Steverino, I love how you and the hypothetical here assumes that abortion is that simple.

    It does nothing of the sort, blockhead. What the hypothetical attempts is to separate the death of the fetus from the termination of the pregnancy. Is that so hard for you to understand?

    I’ve never stated that abortion is simple, and if you inferred that from my comments, you’re even dumber than I imagined.

    Sometimes it’s both, and sometimes it’s about a thousand other reasons.

    That says it all: sometimes it’s about killing a fetus, for no other reason than you can.

    Regardless it’s about choice, even under the above stated hypothetical scenario.

    The “choice” — as we’ve been told for years — is for a woman to opt out of a pregnancy. That’s what this hypothetical allows, except that the fetus isn’t killed. But now, apparently, the choice is about being able to kill an unborn.

    Nk, you have it right: there are liberals who insist that the fetus is better off dead. I wouldn’t have believed it, either.

    All you who insist that it’s better the fetuses are dead because the country doesn’t have the resources to care for them: would you say that about illegal aliens? Or people on welfare?

    Steverino (db5760)

  90. Not fighting with you Steverino, especially when it comes to a Woman’s rights.

    You want to call me a blockhead fine…….. just tells me a lot about you.

    Come to think about it, I already do know a lot about it you. Your name sounds familiar here as I’m sure mine does to you.

    Just so you know, abortion would never be my choice……. but American Women do have that choice.

    It’s good to live in America isn’t it?

    Oiram (983921)

  91. Or disabled people, or gypsies, or gays, or Jews… (apologies to Godwin)

    Oiram, besides being a deliberately obtuse tool, could you please explain how a baby raised in a freaking laboratory would catch HIV or become addicted to heroin. I’m guessing that this hypothetical assumes enough advancement of science that we could cure such things in-utero. Just answer the hypothetical, without worrying about the money.

    carlitos (84e862)

  92. Oiram, you really don’t understand what the hypothetical is about, do you?

    But I wouldn’t call you a blockhead if you didn’t insist on mispresenting your opponents words. Please show us where the hypothetical assumed abortion was simple. Please show us where I did that.

    Can’t do it, can you?

    Blockhead.

    Steverino (69d941)

  93. No, Missy, I was not including you.

    nk (5fa892)

  94. Juan, there are plenty of interesting discussions between children but none that interest me.

    Wanting to dialogue with a Pro Deather Choicer is not about understanding it about making nice with folks who have no moral compass.

    I, for one, do not think it my obligation to justify a Pro-Life position ….. It is theirs to justify a Pro Death Choice position.

    Perverse how the good have to justify goodness while we tthe bad can simply utter stupid platitudes and get away without nary a critique in “Pleasant Society.”

    The abortion argument is simple (not complicated) …. Does a mother have the right to kill her child? Period end of story,

    Debate that and not sophmoric lawyer BS. Then, at least, you and many will have one intellectuals’ respect.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  95. Stupid Platitudes and Arguments We Accept to Justify Abortion =

    “A Women’s Right to Choose”

    “Control Her Own Body”

    “What Happens if It Is Incest or Rape”

    “Not Enough Money”

    “Society Will Have to Pay for the Child”

    Line’em up and I will shoot them down because they are all idiotic.

    The only real debate is “Does a Women Have a Right to Kill Her Child???”

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  96. The key question, as even Justice Blackmun of “emanations and penumbras” fame acknowledged, is whether or not the baby is a person. If it is a person, then the parents are responsible for his/her wellbeing, and the state reasonably should hold them accountable for the child’s well-being. If it’s not a person, then treat it like any other unwanted body growth! Having said that, as a pro-life Christian, if that technology is ever developed, I hope that pro-life people in general would step up to the plate and adopt those babies, as pro-life people are adopting unwanted frozen embryos wherever possible. When close friends had a baby through in-vitro fertilization, I had some qualms about the process, but no qualms in signing up (with my wife) to provide any leftover babies with a womb and a chance to live if necessary. Their parents made sure none of the embryos were wasted, so we weren’t asked to follow through on our commitment.

    Part of the reason Christianity grew so fast during its first three centuries, and in spite of persecution, was that the Christians of that era took in the babies abandoned on the roadsides of the Roman empire and raised them as Christians. (Abortion technology was not as highly developed and readily available, so infanticide was the norm.)

    Ken Burk (db735e)

  97. I don’t have a personal stake in this argument, nor do I have a hard and fast position.

    But I was struck by the legal trick implicit in the instructions to be “dispassionate”. It seems to me that Patterico has attempted to force the conclusion to the pro-choice side, in a lawyerly maneuver.

    That is, if you believe that an abortion is the murder of a human being, how do you propose to feel dispassionate about the issue? On the other hand, if you feel that an abortion is similar to a bloody nose, it might be difficult not to take serious offense with someone who wants to restrict your actions.

    It seems to me that some issues just can’t be addressed in a truly dispassionate manner. In this case, I imagine that there would be some who would argue that it is inhumane to even try.

    GaryS (1a3d23)

  98. #96 “The only real debate is “Does a Women Have a Right to Kill Her Child???”

    No she doesn’t Da’Shiznit, no one does. However, a Woman does have the right to choose to terminate her pregnancy.

    Oiram (983921)

  99. #92….. you crack me up Steverino.

    I already have shown you.

    Done with Steverino :(

    Oiram (983921)

  100. “”The key question, as even Justice Blackmun of “emanations and penumbras” fame acknowledged, is whether or not the baby is a person. “”

    Another red-herring the debate.

    What is a “Person?” When does “it” become a Person? I KNOW THE ANSWER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    “Honey, we are having a baby!!!!!!!!!”

    It just became a Person right there.

    A helpless Person but no more so than a Person on a ventilator.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  101. Oiram, you support murder. Enough said.

    Right to terminate her pregnancy = Right to kill a child.

    What is so hard for allegedly smart people to understand? Why use euphemisms?

    Whenever you want to justify killing the first thing you do is strip the human of their humanity by calling them “Pigs” or in this case “Fetus.’

    No one complains when you kill a fetus or a pig….. even if they are Humans.

    Dear God what have we become. We are ghouls fulfilling biological functions.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  102. GaryS, thank you.

    My family lived this in Nazi Germany. The use of words to perpetuate the most inhumane actions by smart lawyerly types.

    All justified and all legal. All deeply immoral.

    Maybe if folks would read some of the propoganda used in that time, also reference the Stalinist and Maoist propoganda.

    Again, all very legal and very smart people pushing immorality and inhumanity.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  103. The greatest truths start as heresy.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  104. #92….. you crack me up Steverino.

    I already have shown you.

    You didn’t show a single quote, all you did was make an assertion. Assertions are not proof, they are not even evidence.

    Nice try, blockhead.

    Steverino (69d941)

  105. But I was struck by the legal trick implicit in the instructions to be “dispassionate”. It seems to me that Patterico has attempted to force the conclusion to the pro-choice side, in a lawyerly maneuver.

    I don’t think Patterico meant it that way, and I certainly didn’t take it as such. I thought Patterico was trying to keep inflammatory language out of the debate, at least at first. But it has become clear that some on the pro-choice side really have no qualms about killing, and that the abortion debate isn’t just a matter of ending a pregnancy.

    Steverino (69d941)

  106. Thanks, nk @93. I was trying to be dispassionate per instructions and then wondered if it was coming across the wrong way.

    Missy (d108c1)

  107. Shiznit-head, did you miss this in the topic?

    I’d appreciate it if you could keep the usual stuff about murder and evil and so forth to a minimum. Like zero. I’m more interested in a dispassionate discussion.

    No one is forcing you to comment on this, although you do make one good point. As soon as she’s pregnant and says “I’m going to have a baby” it’s a baby. When the chick on Friends is pregnant, it’s not a ‘choice’ or a ‘fetus’ it’s a baby.

    Just as a reminder, our hypothetical asks whether the dynamics of willful pregnancy termination changes when the baby in question can live elsewhere outside the womb, free of charge, until birth.

    carlitos (84e862)

  108. changes = change

    carlitos (84e862)

  109. You mean Obama’s position isn’t really for reducing abortion? You mean the Obama’s Freedom of Choice Act will actually increase abortions because it’ll be easier to have one?!!!

    Well, knock me over and call me Kmiec. I thought Obama was pro-life!

    Roy Mustang (ad5f36)

  110. Let me be perfectly clear, Da’Shiznit, Missy and company.

    I am a Catholic plus I have my own personal feelings about life. I would never ever, under any circumstance abort my unborn child.

    I do however respect our laws that protect the rights of woman to terminate their pregnancy. (not the same as murdering a child).

    Even though I am a Catholic and am against the death penalty, I respect the rights of state’s that have the death penalty.

    You see I don’t go around calling many of the people who are pro life but also pro death penalty….. murderers……… hypocrites maybe, murderers definitely not.

    I also don’t go around calling many of the people that are pro-life but support abortion in the case of rape or incest murderers…….. do you all?

    Oiram (983921)

  111. I am a Catholic plus I have my own personal feelings about life. I would never ever, under any circumstance abort my unborn child.

    I do however respect our laws that protect the rights of woman to terminate their pregnancy. (not the same as murdering a child).

    Good old Oiram. Singlehandedly making the left look foolish.

    Subotai (09ad21)

  112. I am a Catholic plus I have my own personal feelings about life. I would never ever, under any circumstance abort my unborn child.

    I do however respect our laws that protect the rights of woman to terminate their pregnancy. (not the same as murdering a child).

    Even though I am a Catholic and am against the death penalty, I respect the rights of state’s that have the death penalty.

    You see I don’t go around calling many of the people who are pro life but also pro death penalty….. murderers……… hypocrites maybe, murderers definitely not.

    I also don’t go around calling many of the people that are pro-life but support abortion in the case of rape or incest murderers…….. do you all?

    Oh, Oiram, you are such a good person! (Swoons)

    nk (5fa892)

  113. Steverino at 81 said: I’m amused that so many people want to read far more into the hypothetical than really exists.

    The question is simple: is abortion fundamentally about a woman being able to walk away from a pregnancy, or is it fundamentally about terminating an unwanted life?

    The more people try to obfuscate the hypothetical with side issues, the more I am convinced that abortion isn’t about the former at all, it is about the latter.

    This is clearly the case. It’s not about the woman’s body being free… it’s not about poor opportunities for unwanted kids… it’s about power over the fetus.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  114. Steverino, I still think you don’t get what was meant with the Grizzly analogy. Remember, I’m just saying that the Grizzly scenario is not an undue burden… and therefore the incubation machine at the hands of the government is not an undue burden and abortion would be absolutely unjustifiable.

    I think you’re getting caught up in the less relevant aspects of the analogy. Not that it matters much, because this hypo isn’t meant for me or any other pro-lifer to answer.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  115. Right to terminate her pregnancy = Right to kill a child.

    No one would argue that the state should have the right to punish a woman if she chooses to cut off her arm, but this is not true if she chooses to abort a child.

    Someone objected to the term “forced pregnancy,” but that is exactly what we’re talking about – using the police power of the state to force a woman to carry her child to term against her own wishes.

    What should the proper punishment be for a woman who disobeys such a law? Imprisonment? Possible death penalty? Would we imprison her during her term to ensure she gives birth if she threatened to terminate her pregnancy in violation of the law?

    The terrible dilemma this issue brings is because it is unique. Analogies don’t hold. It is not the same as cutting off an arm certainly, but neither is it the same as killing a year old child.

    Similarly, arguing that it is just a manifestation of some “culture of death” incorporating suicide, euthanasia, etc. doesn’t hold. The women I have spoken to who have had an abortion have never done it without ambivalence and sadness and did not see any connection with euthanasia, etc.

    Most of the posters here are men, as I am. Mostly, I think we should butt out on this issue.

    Peccator Dubius (0a6237)

  116. The adjectiveless Dana wrote:

    It is that the child has no value.

    What a debacle – it has value if a pregnant woman is shot and the baby is killed. The criminal would be justly charged with murder. But if she wants to abort the baby, then it has no value….

    We already accord much less “value” to the child. Remember the Amy Grossberg-Brian Peterson case, where the young couple just flat murdered their unplanned and unwanted newborn and tossed his body in a dumpster? Miss Grossberg got a whopping 2½ years, while Mr Peterson had to serve a tremendous two years.

    That was hardly the only case. The Delaware state legislature then changed its law to include just a single action under its murder by neglect or abuse statutes, but when Abigail Caliboso and Jose Ocampo abandoned their newborn in a porta-john at a Bear, Delaware construction site, where the baby girl died of exposure when the temperature dropped to 38º overnight, the judge in the case, an idiot named Richard S. Gebelein protested the state’s attempt to charge the two with a crime that would have imprisoned them for ten years, giving the moronic excuse that it “would send the wrong message to minorities and those who cooperate with authorities.” Judge Gebelein wanted to give the two two-year sentences.

    These weren’t abortions; they were the killings of newborn babies who were delivered normally. But since no one — other than the “parents” — knew the babies, why there was no one who missed them, no one who valued them, so it was the dreadful penalties the poor, misguided teenagers faced which drew sympathy.

    The Catholic Dana (556f76)

  117. Steverino wrote:

    To put it succinctly: what if there were a way to end a pregnancy and remove any legal, financial, or moral obligation from the woman, and yet the fetus would continue to gestate? What if a woman could walk away from a pregnancy without terminating the life of the fetus?

    Would that make terminating the fetus unnecessary? Or would you still want the fetus to be terminated?

    That is the entire point of partial birth abortion, to kill the child. If for some reason the woman must be made “un-pregnant,” at a stage of development which would point to a PBA, the physical stress on the mother is actually greater when the “delivery” is “aborted” while the abortionist slaughters the child while still partially inside the “mother’s” body. If the pregnancy is causing a grave physical threat to the mother’s life, it would actually be easier to deliver the child alive than to stop to kill him.

    But that isn’t the point; the point is that the child must be killed so as not to inconvenience the mother.

    The very Catholic Dana (556f76)

  118. To answer our host’s hypothetical: My position is that the life of the child outweighs every consideration other than the life of the mother. The mother cannot, and should not, be forced to sacrifice her life for the life of her unborn child. And as a purely practical point, if the pregnancy kills the pregnant woman, her death will lead to the death of the unborn child as well.

    But no consideration less than the life of the mother can outweigh the child’s right to life, and, therefore, she should be required to carry her child to term; if she wishes to surrender him for adoption at that point, let her.

    Yet our host’s hypothetical presents the effect of the woman surrendering all parental rights, while not killing her unborn child. That, to me, is the moral equivalent of carrying to term and surrendering for adoption. I don’t particularly like the idea, but would have to support such a notion.

    The Mass-every-Sunday Dana (556f76)

  119. Oiram wrote:

    In the real world can you assume that every child who would of been otherwise aborted will be able to find a home?

    So, because an unwanted-by-his-mother child might not ever be adopted, do you think that he’s better off dead?

    While we don’t seem to take surveys of children who need parents but aren’t adopted, asking them if they’d rather be dead, we do know that most orphans do not try to kill themselves. The suicide rate is elevated, but the vast, vast majority don’t kill themselves.

    Perhaps we, as observers, might think they’d be better off dead, but few of them are so persuaded by that logic that they attempt to become dead.

    It’s very, very easy for us to say “I’d rather be dead than an orphan (or a quadriplegic or blind or whatever),” when the practical effect of such a statement does not mean that we are about to kill ourselves. Somehow, the people who do face such situations don’t take the “I’d rather be dead” notion to the extent of actually killing themselves, not to a significantly greater rate than anyone else.

    The pro-life Dana (556f76)

  120. #119 Dana your a Catholic right? Do you have the same passion for the murders that are committed under the death penalty that you do for the choice woman make with their bodies?

    Oiram (983921)

  121. #119 Sorry Dana I should of answered your question before asking you one.

    You know I’m a Catholic and against abortion personally.

    In the real world can you assume that every child who would of been otherwise aborted will be able to find a home?

    No I can’t assume that.

    I can assume that most people chose who they will adopt based on race and health.

    Look I have complete respect for your views, if you A. Would Adopt any baby.

    B. Are passionately against the death penalty.

    C. Are against abortion in all cases….. rape, incest, health etc.

    Oiram (983921)

  122. Dana your a Catholic right? Do you have the same passion for the murders that are committed under the death penalty that you do for the choice woman make with their bodies?

    Capital punishment as a punishment for murder is not on the same moral footing as the sanitized language you use for abortion. To equate the two morally is heinous.

    Steverino (db5760)

  123. Oiram,

    Yes the moral equivalency argument between the Death Penalty and Abortion. Another lightweight argument by the Pro Death folks.

    Let me be the first to say I think Murdering Humans is perfectly legitimate under many circumstances but as yet have not conceptualized how Abortion can be one of those.

    Maybe if they invented a time travel machine with a fortune teller who can predict the Baby/Fetus/Your Child would turn out to be Hitler then maybe I would reconsider.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  124. Carlitos, dispassionate? Already that but regardless my points are logical, emotion or not. I think the whole debate on the hypothetical is DUMB and a Trojan Horse in this debate to introduce “a middle ground” where none exists.

    The debate is simple — “Can a Women Choose to Kill Her Child?

    I am against a Women or Man choosing this option under any circumstance and find the debates presented to me to be filled with euphemisms and feel good mumbo jumbo.

    Chalk this thread to “Logic for the Barney Set.”

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  125. “if the pregnancy kills the pregnant woman, her death will lead to the death of the unborn child as well.”

    … again, this is false.

    You can kill a women in month 6 and still happily C-Section a healthy life from her.

    Which is why late term Abortion is even more gruesome and its practicants nothing more than Dr Mengele Cloneswith nice MD degrees.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  126. I dunno,
    Alot of the anit-abortion stuff I have read here tends towards making the original mother responsible for “Having screwed up” and they also seemed a bit put off by giving this hypothetical woman a ‘pass’.
    If we can be assured the child has equal chance of viablity, then it isn’t abortion in the current definition. The pregnancy is terminated, but not the life of the fetus. I mean pregnancy is terminated after birth right? And the desirable alternative is Adoption no?
    I view this hyopthetical as ‘Pre-emptive Adoption” rather than abortion.
    It sure as hell would put and end to the shouts of “Murderer!” No?

    paul from fl (4dd8c4)

  127. Oiram #121, Logic for Barney Alert …..

    Oiram, I would only respect you Liberal positions if

    1) You worked the rest of your life for food and shelter and gave all your remaining wages to the poor.

    2) You woke up every day of your life thinking about how you could help your neighbor regardless of you life

    3) You stopped trying to impose your views on me via the Legislative, Executive and Judicial Branches.

    Same concept and equally stoopid.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  128. “Alot of the anit-abortion stuff I have read here tends towards making the original mother responsible for “Having screwed up””

    Yeah, that is usually what it is called when you have unprotected sex with a man you don’t like enough to have a child with and don’t go after the morning after pill to clean up the mess.

    Girlies, all it takes is an OD of B-Control pills or a shot to avoid the pregnancy even after the event.

    There is no circumstance I can see in society today where a women needs to even get pregnant if she is responsible.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  129. Oiram asked:

    Dana your a Catholic right? Do you have the same passion for the murders that are committed under the death penalty that you do for the choice woman make with their bodies?

    I am opposed to capital punishment, period, if that is what you wish to know.

    However, I assume from your phraseology that you are concerned with how much passion I have for the two ends of the pro-life position. One of my humble site’s readers asked a similar question, which I addressed at some length here, a mere ten days ago.

    It should be noted that brevity is not among my virtues! But one point I made there bears repeating:

    There’s rather less urgency in the two problems. Only slightly more than 1,000 people have been executed in the United States since the resumption of executions in 1976 — and 17 states have executed no one at all — while five times that many unborn children will be executed every single day that the abortion clinics are open. Texas has executed 422 people since the resumption of capital punishment in Texas in 1982, but a Google search of “Houston””abortion clinics” came up with a map for ten abortion clinics in the Houston area alone. Somehow, when the state that executes more people than any other — an average of roughly 16 people a year — can support ten abortion clinics around just one of its metropolitan areas, it seems to me that the problem of abortion rather outweighs the problem of capital punishment.

    The Catholic Dana (556f76)

  130. Oiram wrote:

    You know I’m a Catholic and against abortion personally.

    Really? Let’s examine the logic of that statement, shall we? For you to be opposed to abortion, personally or otherwise, you must believe that an unborn child is a living human being. Adding Catholic teachings to that, since you said you were Catholic, you must believe in the absolute right to life from the moment of conception to natural death.

    Now, how can you square that with the “personally opposed” position made so popular by Mario Cuomo? In supporting laws which allow abortion, you are supporting what your own beliefs tell you is the murder of another human being, for any reasons given by another. We all know that you wouldn’t support repeal of our murder laws; you are very willing to impose your personal beliefs concerning murder on others. I’d even take a guess and suppose that you would not have said, in 1960, that you were personally opposed to slavery, but wouldn’t take such a choice away from those who did not believe as you did.

    I think that this would be a wonderful opportunity for you to explain something that has me absolutely baffled: how can anyone who actually believes that an unborn child is a living human being support abortion? To say you are “personally opposed” but wouldn’t prohibit others is tantamount to saying that you have a moral code in which you have absolutely no convictions. I’m not trying to be insulting here, but I cannot see any logical consistency in the position you have taken.

    The baffled Dana (556f76)

  131. Comment by Da’Shiznit:

    The debate is simple — “Can a Women Choose to Kill Her Child?

    No, the debate is simple – answer the hypothetical question posed above.
    A reminder: Suppose the technology existed to safely remove a fetus from a womb at any gestational stage for incubation elsewhere until birth. If such “no-death abortion” was available to any woman who wanted it, would most abortion rights supporters stand down?

    Shithead,
    The ‘dispassionate’ request was not mine. I was merely re-posting a request in the original topic. The poster asked that we please skip the good vs. evil thing. In addition to lacking reading comprehension, are you so lacking in self-control that you are forced to comment on a thread that asks you not to post what you are posting? Go start shiznit.com and put big, bold letters that abortion = murder. We get it.

    Oiram,

    Are you *ever* going to address the hypothetical, i.e., the topic?

    I wish a few more abortion-rights supporters would comment here, because I’m genuinely curious how the logic would flow.

    carlitos (84e862)

  132. Oiram,
    Apologies, I just noted the last sentence in your post #82, where you said “If all of these “hypothetical” incubated babies were guaranteed to have an adopted parent regardless of their health, gender, or race” then you, along with most pro-choicers, would ‘stand down.’ I think so too.

    carlitos (84e862)

  133. You see I don’t go around calling many of the people who are pro life but also pro death penalty….. murderers……… hypocrites maybe, murderers definitely not.

    Why the hell is that hypocritical?

    There is a difference — a big difference — between a human life that is innocent (which presumably is the case of a fetus or infant) and a life that is guilty (say, a psychopath who has killed 10 people, or a guy who has robbed and murdered an owner of a liquor store).

    To not understand the difference between the two is one reason a larger variety of people nowadays shed tears over the way we humans deal with animals (ohhh, so cute, so innocent! Fido should be treated like a human child, and maybe all of humanity should stop eating meat and become vegans!!). And the way that far too many of us humans — certainly of the liberal persuasion — deal with criminals (he may be guilty of murder, but he’s also a victim of a cruel, unforgiving society!…and a single mother who had to work to feed her 5 children, no thanks to stingy welfare and food-stamps policies!).

    Again, a case study of ass-backwards morality and compassion.

    Mark (411533)

  134. Oiram, what is there to comment on?

    Hypothetical: If your mother had ballz would she be your father?

    The hypothetical is on that level. So I choose not to engage in faux intellectualism.

    Real Questions to Real Problems get real Answers.

    Try again amature.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  135. Mark, thank you.

    We have lots of “smart” morons on this web site.

    Only supports my belief we have way too many College Grads in this nation with free time to ponder large issues with small minds.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  136. Amateur. Oh god I am semi-illiterate

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  137. I think we got away a bit from the hypothetical. I think, or I would like to think, that given the choice of equal time involved, inconvenience, etc. (I say this not to be snarky, but I do think that some shallow pro choice women would look at that) between both procedures and the caveat that Patterico introduced of no legal or financial responsibility, a more than significant majority of women would opt for the “birth” over death.

    The conundrum is that for most (I didn’t say all) women that opt for an abortion, it is not a moral dilemma but an act of convenience. As long as it is just as convenient to “test tube” the fetus, I think that most would not care.

    This is, after all, the opinion of a male who has never been pregnant and faced this kind of decision.

    rls (14b9d3)

  138. Shiznit – “I choose not to engage in faux intellectualism…”

    This from a guy who has posted 19 comments to this one topic. Are you insane? If your mother had balls, she’d slap you.

    carlitos (84e862)

  139. Carlitos, not Oiram. Eh. My bad. Point is the same.

    The hypothetical is completely idiotic and a trojan horse for making nice with Pro Abortion folks.

    With respect to reading comprehension, er, uh, I think I get it alright.

    This is like when I went out drinking with a female who wanted to be friends that I wanted to bang and of course I would start to talk to her about sex and feeding her drinks. The hypothetical was presented to the unintended “victim” in order to establish a “friendly dialogue” which eventually would “disarm her enuff” that she would come on back to my pad.

    Buenas noches jilipoya.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  140. 19 comments telling folks the same…..

    1) Don’t be confused by jibberish

    2) Focus on real stuff

    Does a women (or parent) have the right to kill their child?

    I think it a very interesting discussion. In some cultures the answer is yes.

    Unfortunately we like to think of ourselves as being so moral and high above it but frankly we use euphemisms to mask our in-human behavior. We is us Americans.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  141. I bet everyone reading this that Mr. buenas noches posts another comment in addition to the 20 it has already posted.

    I have never heard anyone say ‘jilipoya’ – did you get that from babelfish? Honestly, “ballz?” “enuff?” Are you in 7th grade?

    carlitos (84e862)

  142. Ah, it beat me to it.

    carlitos (84e862)

  143. …. plus I am waiting for a fair fight but I enjoy and greatly appreciate the sparring sport.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  144. Carlitos, yes.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  145. How in the world can we interpret “I choose not to participate” vs. 2 dozen odd comments vs. “good night” (last refuge of trolls who won’t leave)?

    carlitos (84e862)

  146. Yes to babelfish, or to 7th grade?

    carlitos (84e862)

  147. [...] around the blogosphere and the news: one of Patterico’s “Jury” bloggers poses an abortion hypothetical; and, in the face of the Freedom of [...]

    Why “Pro-Choice” Is Not an Apt Description for the Abortion-Rights Movement at Haemet (9b0c50)

  148. The hypothetical in question actually sums up my own pro-choice position almost exactly, as it has been for some years now, which is:

    I believe that the woman should have the right, at any time, to give up the contents of her womb to the state. If the fetus is viable to keep alive at that stage, it should be; if not, abort.

    If technology can take it back to the beginning, I’d be all for that, and yes, I believe I would stand down. I think there might still be hypotheticals where complications could ensue and abortion might be necessary to save the life or health of the mother, and I’d favor giving doctors the option to perform it under such extenuating circumstances.

    But if we could perfectly remove every fetus and incubate it to term? That’d be great, and fine by me.

    LYT (92d400)

  149. “At the same time the male partner has no legal say in the choice”

    Welllllll, keep your penis to yourself. That’s a 100% guarantee you won’t have to A. have your offspring aborted or B. pay child-support for an unplanned pregnancy up until the child is 18.

    So simple! ;p

    ButterCrumb (63e721)

  150. I can see keeping fertilized eggs viable in a petri dish but how in the hades do you keep a fetus from developing into a BABY and into a CHILD and then ADULT? That would quackery.

    So, would you clone the fetus and keep the cloned cells viable and kill the fetus? Oy vey! *smacks self*

    ButterCrumb (63e721)

  151. Welllllll, keep your penis to yourself. That’s a 100% guarantee you won’t have to A. have your offspring aborted or B. pay child-support for an unplanned pregnancy up until the child is 18.

    You can keep your legs closed and you won’t have to worry about killing anything! The choice is yours! So simple!

    Pablo (99243e)

  152. Simply put, lost.

    Da'Shiznit (089453)

  153. [...] PRO-ABORTIONISTS HATE LIFE PRO-ABORTIONISTS HATE LIFE AND WILL KILL A CHILD to get back at men, even if there were a way to remove a child from a womb without harming it. They don’t value life. [...]

    PRO-ABORTIONISTS HATE LIFE « The Salty Pundit (540cd7)


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