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Saturday, August 23, 2008

"Saving women's lives"

Edelin is an OB/GYN doctor that works on behalf of keeping abortion safe and legal.

He points out that McCain is an avowed "pro-lifer," while Obama is "pro-choice."

Since abortions will continue even if they are made illegal, Edelin wants to keep them legal.

Abortion is one of the few controversial subjects on which the Libertarian Party takes no stand. The reason is the "non-aggression principle" and how to apply it.

A fundamental tenet of libertarianism is non-aggression. We do not believe in initiating force. (But we believe like hell in returning it if someone else starts it.)

The "pro-life" libertarians apply the principle of non-aggression in favor of the unborn baby. Aborting the unborn is an act of aggression against the unborn.

The "pro-choice" libertarians apply the principle in favor of the mother. Since it is her body, any law restricting her ability to control it is an act of aggression against her.

BlueCarp will play devil's advocate, because he does not have any way to solve this conundrum.

When and to whom one applies the non-aggression principle is a value judgment.

The "pro-life" faction, in general, wants to give the same rights to the unborn as we give to the born. Since we can not intentionally stop an infant from breathing, we should not be able to terminate life while it is still in the womb.

If we really believe that the unborn, at the moment of conception, have the same rights as the born, why do we not list miscarriages in the obituaries? Why do we not have funerals for miscarried fetuses? Should not the census takers count pregnant women twice? (Or more if they are carrying twins or triplets). If we truly value the unborn like we value the born, should we not give the unborn all the same accoutrements of death as we give the born?

BlueCarp does not pretend to know.

The "pro-choice" faction believes that it is the pregnant woman's absolute right to choose what to do with her body. If she wishes to abort a pregnancy, any government restriction on that choice is morally wrong.

BlueCarp asks that if we really believe in the right to chose, do we also not believe that the choser must live with the consequences of that choice? For better or worse?

If so, what about the woman's right to chose abstinence? Or birth control? (BlueCarp is specifically addressing only consensual sex. Rape is a different issue, since choice was not part of the equation.)

If a woman's right to choose what to do with her body is of paramount importance, how can we ignore her choice to have sex? The choice to have sex has consequences. One of those consequences is the chance that a future living person might be created and need a womb for nine months. That future person is not a trespasser in a woman's womb. That future person was invited in when the woman chose to have sex.

So, "pro-lifers" proclaim that all life - born or unborn - is sacred, but they do not treat it that way.

And "pro-choicers" proclaim that a woman must have absolute choice over her body, but ignore the choice - and consequences - of having sex.

1 comment:

  1. Some time ago, dunno when, it was decided that a baby lost in the last trimester is a stillborn. A baby lost at any point in the first two trimesters is a miscarriage. My understanding is that the last trimester was called stillborn because babies born (alive) in the last trimester have a damn good chance of making it to adulthood.

    Personal experience leads be to believe that a third trimester abortion is akin to infanticide, so I look at it this way:

    They're both right. if she chooses to go through that critical six month period without getting an abortion then, sometime in the last three months changes her mind and says "Whoops, I didn't want it after all! Cut it out." as opposed to, say, having an induced labor (which she'll have to do anyway) and giving the baby up for adoption (there are thousands of childless couples who want nothing more than their own child) . . at that point, it's her own problem. She did the deed that got her pregnant, waffled with the decision until the baby was old enough to live outside of the womb. . . if you don't want it, fine. Give it up for adoption to a nice couple who desperately wants a child. Don't murder it.