Brandon Vogt

Why the President is Wrong on Abortion

President Obama
 
A few minutes ago, President Obama released a brief statement regarding the anniversary of Roe v. Wade (1973), the Supreme Court decision which dissolved most restrictions on abortion.
 

Statement by the President on Roe v. Wade Anniversary
 
Today, as we reflect on the 41st anniversary of the Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade, we recommit ourselves to the decision’s guiding principle: that every woman should be able to make her own choices about her body and her health. We reaffirm our steadfast commitment to protecting a woman’s access to safe, affordable health care and her constitutional right to privacy, including the right to reproductive freedom. And we resolve to reduce the number of unintended pregnancies, support maternal and child health, and continue to build safe and healthy communities for all our children. Because this is a country where everyone deserves the same freedom and opportunities to fulfill their dreams.

 

Though relatively short, the President’s statement is packed with several confusing assertions. I’d like to respond to some of them:
 

“[W]e recommit ourselves to the decision’s guiding principle: that every woman should be able to make her own choices about her body and her health.”

It’s true that every woman should have liberty to make decisions regarding her own body, but not the body of another. Modern embryology affirms that a new human life is created at fertilization (i.e., conception.) Therefore abortion intentionally destroys the life, and thus the body, of an innocent human being. We all should have choices, but nobody should have the freedom to murder anyone else.
 

“We reaffirm our steadfast commitment to protecting a woman’s access to safe, affordable health care.”

Everyone agrees that women (and men) deserve safe, affordable healthcare. That’s not the question. The question is whether the restrictions put in place by Roe v. Wade constitute healthcare. Unfortunately, they primarily concern the right of mothers to uninhibitedly take the life of their children. It’s not healthcare to disrupt a healthy and normally functioning process (e.g., pregnancy) nor is it healthcare to destroy the health of unborn babies.
 

“[We reaffirm a woman’s] constitutional right to privacy”

Like many Constitutional rights, the right to privacy is not absolute. In the eyes of the law, what a woman does with her own body in her own environment is her own concern. Yet when her choices threaten the lives of innocent others, the common good trumps her right to privacy. We all intuitively understand this. It’s why we agree that invading drug labs trumps a drug dealer’s right to privacy. The same principle applies here: women have a right to privacy, but not at the expense of innocent lives.
 

“[We reaffirm a woman’s] right to reproductive freedom.”

I agree! Women should be completely free to reproduce however and, with certain qualifications, wherever and with whomever they will. But Roe v. Wade doesn’t concern reproduction at all. It regards what happens *after* reproduction occurs, after a new, unique, individual human has already been produced by his or her parents. I agree we should promote reproductive freedom but not the freedom to terminate any resulting children.
 

“[W]e resolve to reduce the number of unintended pregnancies.”

Although there are many ways to achieve this noble goal, the restrictions of Roe v. Wade should not be included. Greater access to abortion *increases* the number of unplanned pregnancies. This is because when abortion is a viable “fall back plan”, more couples have sex even when they’re not ready for a baby. Therefore, promoting abortion increases unintended pregnancies.
 

“[We resolve to] support maternal and child health”

I struggle to see how the Roe v. Wade decision supports child health when it seems that 100% of the children it directly affects are no longer alive.

Yet it doesn’t support maternal health either. By violently disrupting a healthy bodily function, abortion leads to increased depression, cancer, mental illness, future pregnancy complications, and more.

Also, note the President’s chilling word choice here. He didn’t resolve to support women’s health, but specifically “maternal” health. The word maternal connotes motherhood, and you can only be a mother if you have a child. This subtle choice insinuates that the President knows well that pregnant mothers carry children, not some abstract clump of cells, and therefore abortion is not a neutral surgical procedure. It involves a mother intending the death of her child.
 

“[We resolve to] build safe and healthy communities for all our children.”

Again, I struggle to see how the Roe v. Wade decision supports children. Abortion doesn’t result in safe and healthy communities for children. It results in less children.
 

“Because this is a country where everyone deserves the same freedom and opportunities to fulfill their dreams.”

I wholeheartedly agree! And that’s why Roe v. Wade should be overturned. The misguided court decision crushes the rights of unborn citizens for the sake of born citizens. It smashes their freedom and opportunity on the altar of false liberty. Everyone in this country deserves the same rights—men, women, and children—especially the smallest and most vulnerable among us.

  • Joe Purkart

    you are missing one crucial point. in the eyes of the law a fetus is not a human until it takes its first breath. So, your arguments for an “innocent” life are a moral/philosophical/religious on. Now if you believe that abortion is wrong then by all means don’t do; don’t have be involved with anyone that finds it okay. however if you want to argue it make sure that you know all the laws surrounding it.

  • GW

    I am pro-life, but I have a point of view that, for some
    reason, gets me censored or deleted from web sites such as this one. I posted a Comment describing my point of
    view two nights ago on the Catholic Church facebook page, but my comment was
    deleted. I wish I understood why, but I’ll
    leave it for another discussion.

    My point of view is that we as Catholics have ceased to be
    the conscience of the nation and have sublimated ourselves to the Republican Party. It’s the only explanation for articles such
    as this one; articles that continually repeat pro-life themes while never
    actually proposing real alternatives for people who feel they must get an
    abortion.

    It seems obvious that if abortion were universally outlawed
    tomorrow, the effect would be that wealthy, well-connected, or just plan
    intelligent women would still find doctors who would perform abortions. Poor women would find other, more dangerous
    ways.

    We as Catholics apparently don’t understand why a woman
    would want or feel she needs an abortion, and as a result we’ve never
    articulated other alternatives that include real support. Of course, the woman can give the child up
    for adoption through Catholic Social Services, but there’s no national
    infrastructure where pregnant women can get actual support. The social safety net of this nation has been
    decimated by our elected representatives.
    Our educational system has been starved, and worse: our public school
    teachers and administrators have had their innovative spirit taken away by
    micro-managing ideologues (witness the creationist crowd).

    The solution to the problem of abortion will entail a
    multi-faceted approach, including justice for those who engage in the practice,
    support for pregnant women who need it, and continuing support for those children
    born as a result of the banning of abortion.
    I’m a lifelong Catholic, and I’ve never heard a Catholic leader eschew
    an opportunity to demonize their opposition to advocate for a Catholic way.

    “Whatsoever you do to the least of my brethren.”

  • karenzainal

    Yes. Not only was the word “abortion” not mentioned even once, President Obama’s statement was just laden with confounding euphemisms.

    It inspired me to write this post on abortion euphemisms: http://karenwriteshere.com/2014/01/23/enough-with-the-endless-abortion-euphemisms/

  • Anthony

    So lets be clear Im not choosing either side so don’t take anything I say personal because in reality it isn’t. I agree with most every point in this article. Part of being human is being spiritual. Without spirituality in your life something is missing from you as a person. But spirituality set aside sometimes there are extenuating circumstances in which what feels right in your heart isnt necessarily the right choice. Of course there is the whole deal with what if the mother was raped or something bad in that nature. But a huge thing that seems to be overlooked is the quality of life the kid being “saved” will have. Just because the child is born it doesn’t garuntee them a happy or fair life. That all depends on circumstance. For example.. The mother is a drug addict and its an unintended pregnancy. The baby already has a high chance of birth defect due to the drugs but once the child is born there probably wont be loving arms there to hold it. Sure there is Foster care but look how that is going. There are too many kids and not enough people to take them in. And sadly not all of the people that take them in are good people. Its an overcrowded and degrading system that offers a very bleak future for the kids involved.And if you go the route of ok parents. You had the kid, you take care of it. Yea the kid avoids foster care but there was a reason the parent or parents wanted to abort it. So do you really think the child is going to have a happy life? Its like taking an accused innocent and throwing them in a lions den and saying “If you survive then your free to live your life”. Its not fair nor morally right. Everyone has a right to be happy and be free to live their lives respectively. And everyone has the right to an opinion. But noone has the right to dictate someonelse’s life wether live or unborn because they feel by their own standards and morals that it should be a certain way. Live your life as honest and best as you can and let other people live their lives

  • Karla

    I understand where most of your points are coming from, even I don’t see the same light, but one comment I feel I must discuss.

    You talk about unwanted pregnancies and how normalizing abortion will increase them. Why do you think this? What literature or statistics say such a thing? Because to me, it’d be the opposite. By legalizing and normalizing abortions we would virtually eliminate illegal/back alley abortions, which is definitely a good thing. So if those people that would have gotten illegal ones now would get legal ones, yes the numbers would show an increase but its statistically the same amount of people doing it; now its just 100% safe (as opposed to the illegal ones I don’t want to get into safety of the fetus/child in this post).

    Also, I highly, *highly* doubt it would raise unprotected sex between partners. No sane woman would go “Ah, yes, they have legalized abortions and it is supported by the community, I will have all the crazy unprotected sex I want now because I can just drive on over to a clinic later!” Because having a partner wear a condom or taking the pill, etc., is so much easier, quicker, less traumatic, cheaper, and painless in comparison to getting an abortion. If they opened up a clinic on the corner of every street I would still make my partner wear a condom every time until we want a child. I am going to give credit to the majority of women and say they would do the same.

    Basically, I just do not think your comment holds water, and I know it is a comment a lot of people make, so this is my argument as to why it is a weak point.

    Thank you for your time!
    -Karla

    • Alexis Boulet

      History absolutely supports that prohibiting or restricting abortions doesn’t prevent them or protect women. The best way to prevent abortions is to empower women so that they feel secure in their ability to provide for themselves and their families.

      • “History absolutely supports that prohibiting or restricting abortions doesn’t prevent them or protect women.”

        Are you suggesting that prohibiting or restricting abortions increases the number of abortion? If so, please provide evidence for this shocking claim.

        “The best way to prevent abortions is to empower women so that they feel secure in their ability to provide for themselves and their families.”

        Without evidence this is mere conjecture. Please provide data proving this claim, otherwise we’ll have to assume it’s a well-intentioned but baseless opinion.

        • Alexis Boulet

          http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_IAW.html
          Here are is are just a few of the facts supported by studies from the WHO and
          other organizations. Please view the link for a more comprehensive understanding of these results.

          ABORTION LAW

          • Highly restrictive abortion laws are not associated with lower abortion rates. For example, the abortion rate is 29 per 1,000 women of childbearing age in Africa and 32 per 1,000 in Latin America—regions in which abortion is illegal under most circumstances in the majority of countries. The rate is 12 per 1,000 in Western Europe, where abortion is generally permitted on broad grounds. [1]

          • Where abortion is permitted on broad legal grounds, it is generally safe, and where it is highly restricted, it is typically unsafe. In developing countries, relatively liberal abortion laws are associated with fewer negative health consequences from unsafe abortion than are highly restrictive laws. [2]

          • In South Africa, the annual number of abortion-related deaths fell by 91 % after the liberalization of the abortion law. [2]

          • In Nepal, where abortion was made legal on broad grounds in 2002, it appears that abortion-related complications are on the decline: A recent study in eight districts found that abortion-related complications accounted for 54% of all facility-treated maternal illnesses in 1998, but for only 28% in 2008–2009. [3]

          • Between 1997 and 2008, the grounds on which abortion may be legally performed were broadened in 17 countries: Benin, Bhutan, Cambodia, Chad, Colombia, Ethiopia, Guinea, Iran, Mali, Nepal, Niger, Portugal, Saint Lucia, Swaziland, Switzerland, Thailand and Togo. Mexico City and parts of Australia (Capital Territory, Victoria, Tasmania and Western Australia) also liberalized their abortion laws. In contrast, El Salvador and Nicaragua changed their already restrictive laws to prohibit abortion entirely, while Poland withdrew socioeconomic reasons as a legal ground for abortion.

    • “You talk about unwanted pregnancies and how normalizing abortion will increase them. Why do you think this? What literature or statistics say such a thing? Because to me, it’d be the opposite. By legalizing and normalizing abortions we would virtually eliminate illegal/back alley abortions, which is definitely a good thing.”

      Karl, thank for the comment! I clearly explained the answer to your question in my article. When abortion is a legal option, couples tend to engage more often in sexual behaviors resulting in pregnancy. They use less contraception, or abstain less often, because abortion is seen as “backup contraception.” Therefore the wider availability of abortion, the higher rate of unplanned pregnancies.

      The second part of your comment misconstrues my point (and the President’s.) Nobody said that legalizing abortion would increase illegal/back alley abortions. We said it would increase unplanned pregnancies, which the President (and most people of good will) are eager to reduce.

  • consumingflame

    Good intelligent response Brandon. Politicians on both sides need to be challenged when they doublespeak.

    For those who have already had an abortion I recommend http://www.rachelsvineyard.org/

  • Alexis Boulet

    None of the quotes provided in your embryology link are newer than 1997 and several are much older than that. Talk about confirmation bias. Science becomes more precise and reevaluates itself as new information becomes available. Statements that are nearly 20 years old (plus) are out of touch with our current, more nuanced, understanding of nearly any scientific field.
    Even if we take the quotes that you provided at face value they are not claiming that a human “life” begins at the moment of fertilization. What they are stating is that the development process starts then. It’s an important distinction. As an example: in a plant seed the ovule and gymnosperm (egg and sperm) have already been combined and has already undergone some cell division and growth to become an embryo. When you look at an acorn do you think “Oh that’s definitely an oak tree.” or do you think “Here is a something that if given time has the potential to DEVELOP into an oak tree.”? It’s not clear when the exact threshold is between the developing potential and life. What the current medical science can and does tell us is the time of viability of a fetus. The time at which, should the fetus be removed from the mother, that it can survive on its own without serious medical intervention. You are entitled to your own opinions but not your own facts. For your own personal purposes you are entitled to define the start of human life at whichever point in human development you choose but we shouldn’t be using opinion to legislate the rights of approximately 50% of the population.

    • Thanks for the comment, Alexis! I’d like to offer some thoughts in reply:

      First, you accuse me of confirmation bias for posting a link to studies dating to 1997. You then say, “Science becomes more precise and reevaluates itself as new information becomes available.” Please share with me the new scientific information that contradicts the mainstream embryology views I affirmed. In other words, what new scientific discoveries suggest an origin of human life at any period later than conception? If you’re unable to provide any, I can only assume this part of your comment was mere conjecture.

      Second, you analogize the beginning of life to the development of an oak tree. You ask whether people staring at an acorn think “Oh that’s definitely an oak tree” or “Here is a something that if given time has the potential to DEVELOP into an oak tree.” However, the analogy is flawed because “tree” is a developmental term; it’s a stage in the development of an oak. It would therefore be more accurate to analogize “tree” with “embryo”, “baby”, “teenager”, or “adult.”

      In other words, an acorn and an oak tree are both considered oaks, no matter their stage of development. Likewise, a fertilized embryo, a toddler, a teenager, and an adult are all consider human, no matter their stage of development. Because of this linguistic flaw in your comment, your analogy fails as a counterargument.

      Third, you say, “It’s not clear when the exact threshold is between the developing potential and life.” But this begs the question because it assumes that a living being cannot have the potential to develop. We know that infants still have developing potential, but they also have life. Therefore, posing the two against each other is to set up a false dichotomy. This too fails as a counterargument.

      Fourth, you assert, “What the current medical science can and does tell us is the time of viability of a fetus.” That is indeed true, but I struggle to see how it’s relevant. Assuming that you’re insinuating viability determines when life begins, please show why we should accept that developmental threshold. What principled reason do you have for believing life begins at viability? Without one, this is an arbitrary dividing line.

      Fifth, you suggest, “you are entitled to define the start of human life at whichever point in human development you choose.” I couldn’t disagree more. It’s an objective fact that each life begins at a certain, specific point in time–it’s that moment when a human goes from non-existence to existence. Even if that point is tough to determine, it still objectively exists. We have no more liberty to determine that point than to subjectively decide our own birthdays.

      Finally, you claim, “we shouldn’t be using opinion to legislate the rights of approximately 50% of the population.” I definitely agree. We should reference the relevant biological data on when life begins, and it overwhelmingly supports the truth that life begins at conception. Ironically, it’s those who support Roe v. Wade who use opinion–namely their opinion of when life begins–to legislate the right of mass amounts of unborn people. Let’s let the biological facts of life drive our legislation, and when we do, we’ll curb the legalized killing of unborn children.

  • funhouse

    So I was a product of a c-section, therfore I was not born, I was taken. I tell people I was plucked not born. Now does that mean I an not a preson because I was never born? Don’t get hung up on the birth = person thing. Now if we found one celled body on Mars there would be dancing in the streets because we found life on mars. Why not a unborn baby.

  • It’s interesting that Obama knows everything you are saying, yet ignores it. From an interview ( http://wonderingzygoteemeritus.blogspot.com/2009/06/abortion-is-just-war-for-obama.html ), Obama said, “…As a Christian, I have a lot of humility about understanding when does the soul enter into (Stephanopoulos interrupts: As respect to Augustine) It does. It’s a pretty tough question and so all I meant to communicate was that I don’t presume to be able to answer these kinds of theological questions. What I do know is that abortion is a moral issue. That’s it’s one that families struggle with all the time. And that in wrestling with those issues I don’t think that the government criminalizing the choices that families make is the best answer for reducing abortions. I think the better answer, and this was reflected in the Democratic platform, is to figure out how do make sure that young mothers or women who have a pregnancy that’s unexpected or difficult have the kind of support they need to make a whole range of choices including adoption….” He really thinks abortion is a just war.

    • ktoo

      How can you call something a “moral issue” while completely ignore the morality of abortion. There is NO moral argument for abortion.
      What I guess the President is saying, is that if you like your baby, you can keep your baby. But if you don’t…it’s all good.

  • Casey

    Well handled Brandon. First blog I have read from you. I am a religious person, however I think abortion is more of a moral argument than a religious one and yes there is a difference between the two. I cannot wrap my head around the opinion that aborting a child because of convenience is acceptable. I can at least listen to the debate on rape or incest, but as many other people have stated that is a very small percentage of abortions. I can’t say I have the answer to this issue but I do very much value my own opportunity of life

  • Kate33

    Here is Gianna Jessen’s story for those who are interested…. her story changed me from pro-choice to pro-life….

    http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Gianna+Jessen&qpvt=Gianna+Jessen&FORM=VDRE#view=detail&mid=67DBC4A72369A8D4470267DBC4A72369A8D44702

  • Kate33

    And just FYI… did you know that “Jane Roe” of Roe vs. Wade is pro-life now is has spoken up about how her initial intent and case was completely politicized and taken off track. The Roe in Roe vs. Wade doesn’t agree with the decision which was a winning decision for her 41 years ago! It’s a fascinating story!

    http://www.priestsforlife.org/clippings/99-07-99mccorveyriograndecatholic.htm

  • SA

    Also, note the President’s chilling word choice here. He didn’t resolve to support *women’s* health, but specifically “maternal” health. The word maternal connotes mothers, and you can only be a mother if you have a child. This subtle choice insinuates that the President knows well that pregnant mothers carry children, not some abstract clump of cells, and therefore abortion is not a neutral surgical procedure. It involves a mother intending the death of her child.

    Brandon, Thanks for this! With most public figures in high places of authority (such as the President), there is a team of wordsmiths behind the scenes purposefully crafting the message used in speeches and official statements. I agree with you Brandon, the most disturbing part of this statement is the implied admission that pregnant women are mothers. Whether a supporter or opponent of Roe v. Wade, this statement is much more than an insinuation, it’s a clear statement. The definition of Maternal Health refers to the health of women during pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period. If the woman is not a “mother” during pregnancy, the definition would be different. The meaning of the word “maternal” implies motherhood as you correctly point out. We could ask what the woman is a mother of, for those who deny life at fertilization, as you suggest an abstract clump of cells. If a pregnant woman was not in a state of motherhood during the time between fertilization and childbirth, then why is this definition of maternal health so commonly accepted?

  • Angela

    Brandon, thank you for your articulate and cogent reply. What I most appreciate is your sincerity. You did not employ sarcasm or any other derisive manner of speaking. You told the truth frankly using the power of logic. Yours is exactly the type of “voice” I wish to represent me as a Catholic respecting life. Thank you!

  • Jon

    This is article was a very poorly formed argument that repeats the same point over and over again. That point is that “any form of a fetus is a baby and therefore abortion is murder.” That being said, all you really even argued about was the semantics of the President’s speech which proved nothing whatsoever.

    • Jon, thanks for your comment. Would you agree that a fetus is a human fetus and not a canine, bovine, or feline fetus?

  • Lost brain cells reading this

    So clearly took every line out of context. Your beliefs have clouded what you are even hearing from the statement. And you really should check your facts- just because you believe something doesn’t make it a fact.

    • I’m not sure how I took anything out of context since I included the entire context. I posted the President’s statement in full.

      I agree that just because you believe something, it isn’t necessarily fact. But where did I claim otherwise?

      • Lost brain cells reading this

        You should ask the American Cancer Society if in fact, having an abortion increases any risk of cancer. They say otherwise and well, they are the experts and their findings are based on studies, not their beliefs. Also, not sure where you received your education but…when you go sentence by sentence like you did (you know how you worked it in your favor), it doesn’t depict the true nature of the message that was given. Also bringing your education into question, commas typically mean the person is talking about more than one thing. When the President says “as we reflect” that does not mean he thinks that Roe V. Wade is expressing what he is about to say. “Maternal and child health” means just that. The health of mothers and babies. I will dumb that down a bit- he ALSO wants to improve healthcare for mothers and babies.
        Hope that better helps you understand.

        • Thanks for your second reply, “Lost brain cells”. First, I neglected in my earlier response to apologize for your loss of brain cells. I never intended my writing to contribute to your mental degeneration. For that I sincerely apologize.

          Second, while it’s true that the American Cancer Society and other Western cancer-advocacy groups deny the connection between abortion and breast cancer, several recent studies provide startling evidence to the contrary. For example, the Breast Cancer Prevention Institute has an exhaustive list of all major recent studies which shows 57 reporting a positive correlation between abortion and breast cancer. Thus scientific studies, not beliefs, strongly affirm the point in my article.

          Third, you criticize me for “going sentence by sentence” because it “doesn’t depict the true nature of the message.” But I included the entire message, in full, at the beginning of the piece. I’m not trying to hide anything. The President’s comments are presented complete and unaltered. I simply thought it was easier to follow my reply if I broke it down into small chunks. If you disagree, feel free to read my comments sequentially as a single narrative.

          Fourth, the President *was* referring to Roe v. Wade when he said “as we reflect”, a fact made clear by the subsequent words: “as we reflect on the 41st anniversary of the Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade.”

          Fifth, I agree that “maternal and child health” refers to the health of mothers and babies. But how does Roe v. Wade concern mothers? As far as I can tell, the only way is if abortion involves real babies with real mothers, not just clumps of cells carried by childless women.

          Thanks again for your comments!

  • Jeannie

    This is crap. Complete, total, unadulterated crap. Your brain has to be the size of a pea, literally! Your arguments are flawed and skewed. I think my favorite part is when you falsely state that modern science has determined life begins at conception. Are you just stupid?

    What do you not understand about CHOICE and children? Do you have any children? Do you know the economic and emotional strife that children entail? Did you really say abortions increase unwanted pregnancies? WHO CARES? We aren’t talking about aborting CHILDREN! See you later embryo that has no personality, no hands, no fingers, no toes, no brain, no body. I am so happy that our government as ridiculous as they often can be is that much more intelligent than you and your random jesus speak.

    • Jeannie, thanks for the comment!

      You accuse my arguments of being flawed and skewed, but then provide no evidence for those assertions. I can only assume they are baseless.

      To answer your question, I have four children. I fail to see how that’s relevant to the points I made, however.

      Finally, you criticize my “random Jesus speak.” I find that deliciously ironic for two reasons. First, my words were not random. They were designed. Second, I never mentioned Jesus in any part of my post. The only person that has is you.

    • Francis

      There is healing after abortion. Based on your comments I hope that you will seek out some of the resources available to you…Project Rachel or Rachel’s Vineyard for example. Denial of basic embryology will get you far in the pro abortion movement, but it will not bring you peace. Seen my own miscarried 6.5 week old baby, and I can assure you he had a body, hands, fingers, heart, etc. This would be roughly the same age when many abortions occur in this country. I will pray for you.

    • burn burn

      Would you be surprised to know that there is NO physiological difference between an unborn child moments before birth and moments after delivery?

      Do you judge worth based on level of development? In that case, is a mentally handicapped individual of less importance to you than someone of the same age and normally developed?

      It is a scientific fact that life begins at conception. Don’t just spew out what you hear from liberals. The real abortion debate is whether an unborn child constitutes a “person.”

      Your logic is flawed. Did you magically become a child at birth? What happened? Were you not human before that? If not, what were you? Were you not living? If not, how did you grow in a way that is unique from your mother? Please explain in detail. Thanks for your ignorance, its fun!

    • Guest

      And why the hostility?!

    • ktoo

      Let’s look at your rebuttal, Jeannie. First, you start with this reasoned refutation of the scientific portion of the author’s proposition. How could anyone argue with THIS?

      “This is crap. Complete, total, unadulterated crap. Your brain has to be the size of a pea, literally! Your arguments are flawed and skewed. I think my favorite part is when you falsely state that modern science has determined life begins at conception. Are you just stupid?” …BRILLIANT!

      Then there’s THIS:”What do you not understand about CHOICE and children?” What do YOU not understand about human reproduction. The purpose of intercourse is to propogate the species…you know; make babies? When you CHOOSE to screw, you have made the CHOICE to tempt fate…AND nature. Deal with your choices.

      “We aren’t talking about aborting CHILDREN! See you later embryo that has no personality, no hands, no fingers, no toes, no brain, no body.” For the first 6-8 weeks, you may have a point. But what you can’t deny, is that from the moment of conception, the “thing” you happily flush down the toilet is human. And it has it’s own DNA, seperate from yours.

      Finally there’s this gem: “See you later embryo that has no personality, no hands, no fingers, no toes, no brain, no body. I am so happy that our government as ridiculous as they often can be is that much more intelligent than you and your random jesus speak.”
      Finally, I look at your last two “sentences” and think…THIS quasi-literate, Grade School level, grammar challenged, mean-spirited zealot is trying to tell us SHE’S trhe smart one? Har…LMAO!

  • Mike Richards

    “The freedom to terminate any unwanted children”. What is really frustrating about this already polarizing debate is that pro-life folks are 100% stuck in some religious and/or moral position that any embryo is a life and that “life” regardless of how it was created should be brought full term. What about the children who are the product of incestuous relationships? Or those that are brought forth by rape? What about those who are obviously too young who made a terrible mistake and would do nothing more than be a further burden in society or worse yet, be put in foster care and have a miserable life themselves? Finally, what about the “life” that if allowed to come to full term will kill the mother? I don’t believe abortion should be used as birth control but an outright ban on it does infringe on a person’s freedoms. The author is clearly basing his argument from religion not science and clearly not rational real world thought. It’s frustrating because those that argue this point from a purely religious standpoint don’t seem to ever consider circumstances that may warrant such a drastic act. To them it’s never an option.

    • Nyaboke

      You are 100% stuck with an incorrect understanding of freedom and forget that religious beliefs can be rooted in logic and reason.

      • Mike Richards

        Do tell me how I’m stuck with the incorrect understanding of freedom. Please. I’m all ears. Logic and reason prevail when one cos users all circumstances. One sided arguments that utilize onesided and archaic beliefs are generally devoid of logic and reason. My understanding of freedom, just to jump start your argument is that a woman has a right to do with her body and life what she pleases. I don’t feel that she should be sidled with a burden that was forced upon her or that will take her life due to some ideology that it’s “the right thing to do”. Remember, to have logic and reason you must be willing to logically reason through all arguments.

        • Mike Richards

          Considers*. Apologies for auto correct.

          • Jen S

            Mike, it’s late so the only thing I’m going to respond to is the argument for the life of the mother. Even the Catholic Church would agree that the life of the mother is indeed infinitely valuable, as well as her unborn child’s, and must be considered if it is truly in danger due to a prenancy. The teaching is that, the mother would not be wrong to choose to have her medical condition treated, and if in the course of that treatment, the unborn child perishes, that is still a morally acceptable choice. Direct abortion itself, however, is not really ever medically necessary according to many medical professionals, and that’s another issue.
            To you others (hexxuss and Stewart) who assume that it is “old men” with archaic beliefs who don’t agree with abortion – you obviously missed the March for Life today (not surprising, since the mainstream media where you probably get most of your information, ignored it again). Many, many, beautiful young women – as well as men – were there, in fact hundreds of thousands of them. The math is just not in favor of those who contracept and abort their offspring out of existence – but it is with those who love, accept and embrace life. You pro-choicers are the ones who are aging archaics!

          • Patricia Miller

            In addition, if the baby is viable (around 23 weeks) it is much safer to have a Caesarean section than to have an abortion. In fact, the reason many women have a C-section is because the pregnancy is life threatening.

          • ktoo

            I think the increasing desperation of the Pro-Death crowd shows they know they’re losing the argument. Their talking points are decades old and demonstrably incorrect. More and more they resort to emotion based, mean-spirited attacks.
            Their time is coming. And deep down they know it.

        • Nyaboke

          How can you logically argue that I should have the ability to end one life for the sake of mine? Where does it stop? Can I then kill a two year old because he/she can’t take care of herself or reason as well as I can and is a burden to my life? There is no logic in abortion. How sad is it that the most dangerous place for a baby to be is inside his/her mother’s womb, because she is “free” to terminate his/her life?

          • ktoo

            It’s hard to admit that, even at the most basic level, it’s all about you. So they cling to their delusions, because that’s all they have. But deep down they know…and it’s grows inside them like the babies they kill.

        • ktoo

          So you
          support abortion only in cases of rape, incest (“a burden that was forced
          upon her”) and/or will take her life? OK…cool.

          We also
          agree that a woman should have the complete and total freedom to control her
          own body…there should never be any questioning of that.

          What’s
          disingenuous about your (and Obama’s )argument is that you claim the mantle of
          logic and reason. Logic, reason AND science tell us that an “entity”
          with its own, unique DNA and the ability to self-replicate, is NOT a part of a
          woman’s body. It’s a new life.

          It’s
          YOUR position that’s outdated. Why would the Pro-Abortion side fight so vehemently
          against ultrasounds? Why must you deny scientific facts? Realistically, your
          entire argument is rooted purely in denial.

          My sense is that most of you intrinsically
          know abortion is flat wrong. To compensate, you create a false reality. Science
          is chipping away at your rationalizations, thankfully. Soon your side will be
          forced to admit this is almost entirely about convenience and/or avoiding the consequences
          of bad decisions. Sooner or later though, you’ll have to face the facts. Good
          luck with that.

    • doc

      “what about the children who are brought forth from…..” I suppose we could ask them. Oh, no- no we can’t. Actually, there have been cases where these children actually thanked their mom’s for having made the courageous decision to give them/spare their life. The argument is whether anything and everything trumps the value of another individual’s life. Once again we hear the argument that religion and science are at odds. Science, is on “our” side on this one. Both in how it defines “what is living” and in statistics which reveal that abortion leaves at least two victims.

    • Tess

      You are talking about approximately 1% of abortions. I think most pro-lifers would welcome making abortion illegal with exceptions for rape and the endangerment to the mother’s life. It would decrease the 1.2 million abortions that take place every year by 99%.

    • Herkpilot

      Mike, you raise some excellent albeit emotional points. If at all possible take a minute to refocus the line of logic that compels you to endorse terminating a life in progress. In the chain of events that lead to pregnancy men and women have freedoms and choices abundant. However, like a car moving down a highway at a high rate of speed, once the process is underway the choices narrow. That’s not religion, that’s science. Agree that incestuous and forced pregnancy is horrific – an aggressor should be punished so other uncivilized predators are deterred from committing this barbaric act. Also, underage pregnancies can make life more difficult for parents who “travel at a high rate speed” during teen years. In all these cases the “sexually” mature get cart blanche as a result of Roe v Wade to terminate a new life “moving down the highway”. Is that the right posture for a civilized society? What mechanisms are available to make the arguments you’ve just made on behalf of the unborn? “Because this is a country where everyone deserves the freedom and opportunity to fulfill their dreams.” Who is everyone? While we MUST consider the points you raise, I submit we must also find a way to give the unborn a say in this conversation. Too many women live their lives in regret after they make an emotional decision to end a life.

    • Mike, thanks for your passionate comment. A few things in reply:

      First, you claim that “pro-life folks are 100% stuck in some religious and/or moral position that any embryo is a life and that “life”.” But I didn’t resort to morality or religion at all in any part of my article. The question of life is a biological one that most embryologists agree on: life begins at the moment of fertilization (i.e., conception.) The link I referenced in my article provides excerpts from the most popular, mainstream embryology textbooks that affirm this fact.

      Second, you ask “What about the children who are the product of incestuous relationships? Or those that are brought forth by rape?” I agree that rape and incest are extremely difficult and usually traumatic situations for families, and mothers in particular. But why should we kill an innocent child for the crimes of others? We all agree that rape is horrendous and that rapists should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. But killing any resulting children only adds more victims to the heinous crime.

      Third, you ask “What about those who [will] be put in foster care and have a miserable life themselves?” Well first, it’s impossible to know what kind of life someone will lead. Many people have escaped poverty and abuse to have full and flourishing lives. But even if we knew with certainty a child’s future, do they deserve to die instead of living a difficult life? To frame it another way, should we kill two year olds living in poverty of abuse-riddled homes? If we wouldn’t kill a two year old living a difficult life, why would we kill an unborn child who *may* prospectively live a difficult life?

      Finally, you claim that I’m “clearly basing [my] argument from religion not science and clearly not rational real world thought.” Please show me where I once referenced religion, God, the Bible, or the Church. If I “clearly” did this, as you assert, your task should be easy. Likewise, please show how my article is not based on reason or reality. Again, if I “clearly” did this, you should have no trouble.

      Thanks again, Mike!

    • Kate33

      I can only say that I used to feel the same way as you and then I heard the stories of people like Gianna Jessen, Pam Stenzel and Rebecca Keissling… Gianna survived a saline abortion and the other two were conceived in rape… the stories are staggering and Pam Stenzel very specifically states in one of her presentations “Why should I pay because my father is a rapist?” I started to think about that idea, “how would I like to have to be punished for my parent’s bad choices?” It isn’t fair for children to be punished for their parent’s crime. I have heard many stories of women who aborted due to rape where the depression and after affects of the rape were only intensified and made worse by the abortion… the misconception is that abortion makes a bad situation better when in almost all cases it makes a bad situation even worse… Like I said, I know from my own experience that this is a hard concept to get your brain around but it really is worth looking into the stories of those I mentioned above and others. Mike Huckabee did a DVD with Citizens United called “The Gift of Life” and I also have a DVD called “Except in cases of Rape? 12 stories of survival” Hope this is helpful for you!

    • ktoo

      Did the author mention religion? I guess I missed it. He did mention science. On the other hand, while you recite the hackneyed talking points, the percentage of abortions due to rape, incest and to protect a mother from potentially fatal medical complications is less than 0.05%…COMBINED! If that’s your REAL concern, I don’t think there are many people who would insist you carry a baby conceived under such circumstances to term. BUT, the baby is still a baby.
      If you would propose to outlaw or severely limit purely elective abortions, you would quickly find yourself shunned by the freedom loving Pro-Choice community.
      When you get right down to it, the only Choice they’re concerned with is abortion. So the President can dance around the awkward truth of his intellectually dishonest statement, but what he’s REALLY saying is that the ability to legally kill a human entity is sacred. To me, THAT’S as much a religion as any other.

    • Carolyn Laughlin

      Mr Richards, I would have to disagree with you. I am a young woman, and I found myself in a situation as you mentioned. My boyfriend and I found ourselves pregnant unxepectedly. We were terrified by our mistake, and discussed what the best option would be to take. We wern’t ready to become parents, neither could we afford a child. We couldn’t take care of ourselves. We decided on the Adoption option. I knew of a couple who couldn’t have children of their own naturally, and arranged for our daughter to become part of their family. She is now 2 months old healthy and happy. Her adoptive parents are happier than words can describe.
      We made this choice, not because of some religious standpoint, but a human one. Our baby deserved to live, regardless of how she was conceived, or how we felt about the matter. Is not Life, an “inalienable right” protected by our own Constitution? Yes, it was very difficult to give away my baby, but she’ll have a fuller and happier life with parents who love her and give her every opportunity I can’t. The heartache I’ve experienced is nothing to what I’d feel if I’d have aborted her. Even though she’s with another family, I can still enjoy her smiles and participate in her life. I would have lost that opportunity with abortion. Every woman in similar situations should be informed of ALL her options, but sadly, many women who choose abortion haven’t been given all the facts about its side effects, physical and mental. Give them every opportunity to make a right, informed choice. That’s the real Right every woman should have.

  • Cheri Smith

    “Because this is a country where everyone deserves the same freedom and opportunities to fulfill their dreams.” That is only true if the baby isn’t aborted. Otherwise, that aborted fetus/baby will never have freedom or the opportunity to fulfill their dreams.

  • Stewart Gruey

    Modern embryology has done no such thing as to say life begins at conception lol. Life begins when an organism can live on its own without a host which is why viruses aren’t considered living things.

    • hexxuss

      Exactly – I love when religious people try to get involved in science. I’ve always viewed this as more of an issue of middle-aged men losing control over females – and this is just ONE more thing they’ve lost control over us on. Get over it old guys, and look at the bright side,you’ll be dead soon (bright side for ME anyway).

      • Katelyn

        Science and religion compliment one another since science is the study of God’s own creation. It is only a recent trend that they are pitted against one another.
        This article does a great job of explaining the pro-life position as it relates to Mr.Obama’s statement which seems to be riddled with irony.
        Our Lady pray for us! God save America!

      • Jen S

        Lovely, hexxuss. I can see you are a true apostle of the “culture of death”, wishing death even on those who merely disagree with you.

      • cool

        You are a bit misguided. Maybe you’d step out of the cocoon and look at the true picture. If science is your argument, go for the facts on post abortion persons. Interrogate them and see the better way.

      • ktoo

        So this is ANOTHER instance where you support the death of someone who inconveniences you? OK. At least you’re consistent!

    • Gina101

      You must have flunked Biology. That’s okay. I know liberals try to rewite not only history but science as well. You couldn’t live on your own when you were born either. You still needed someone to feed and care for you until you could care for yourself. But you were still a life, albeit in your case a senseless one. “lol”

    • doc

      sorry Stewart and Hexxuss, but you are wrong about the actual definition of what constitutes a living organism. A virus is non-living because it cannot grow, respond to stimuli, on its own. It must enter another cell and use the cells genetic material to do this. ie, it cannot do this with its own component parts. An fetus, on the other hand, grows, is multi cellular and responds to stimuli (yes, this is a proven fact). It requires food and shelter within its mom, but its growth is directed by its own cellular makeup. This is the biological definition. You are stretching the meaning of host beyond its actual definition. Google what defines “living”, if you want. And btw, Hexxuss, Science and religion are not in opposition. More and more, science is proving out the reality of the human person. It is culture which lags far behind.

    • Stewart, thanks for the comment! Did you read any of the statements from the embryology link I provided, which takes you to Princeton’s website? Which of those expert embryologists do you disagree with and why?

    • eduardo

      So when you were a new born…how exactly could you live on your own? Did you know where to look for food? Did you teach yourself to walk? communicate? By your definition of life…..you are not a part of the latter….

    • funhouse

      If a virus is not alive, why do they tell you the flu shot is a dead virus?

      • Eoin Moloney

        For the sake of convenience, because the difference between “dead” and “this was capable of movement/reproduction to an extent, but it isn’t anymore” isn’t relevant to the giving of a flu shot.

    • bob

      you’re an idiot there are plenty of living organisms that really solely on a host for sustenance. its called a symbiotic relationship and it is very different from reproduction. In a symbiotic relationship both organisms benefit as well, viruses are totally irrelevant.

  • Mark Malik

    This article was fantastic! I really only focused on the last line that Obama gave, but I love how this goes statement by statement! If Pro-Life people would get these statements drilled into their head, we could change lives even more rapidly

    • carol

      I wish Obama would read the comments on his statements. If he truly believed what he says he would not be afraid to come to the March for life and say them publically; He hides every year.

  • Here’s the early Christian history of abortion abolitionism for those of you looking for a deeper perspective on these debates:

    http://cosmostheinlost.com/2014/01/22/abortion-natural-law-antisemitism/

    • Marge Simpson

      Link doesn’t work.

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