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Texas is looking to ban all abortions after 20 weeks with a few exception circumstances. My feeling is that people as a whole fall somewhere in the middle.

They don't want a woman who's 36 weeks pregnant to be allowed an abortion because she "no longer wants the baby" because at 36 weeks, that baby could live outside the womb.

At the same time I don't think most people have a problem with morning after pills or any procedure in the first 4 or 5 weeks.

So where do you fall?
No abortions, life begins at conception
No restrictions, a woman's body is her choice
No abortions after viability outside the womb (about 30 weeks)
No abortions after the first heart beat (around 10 weeks)
No abortions after 20 weeks (Halfway point of an avg pregnancy)

Click here to see results so far.

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I think viability is now around 23 weeks with a survival rate betwen 25-50%.

Wiki has 24 weeks @ 50%.
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I'm open to moving the viability date. Unlike the Abortion advocates, I'm not anti-science. Frankly I think a heart-beat might be enough, but again I can be convinced about where to draw the line in the 15 to 30 week range.

Although as science progresses, you might be able to have viability at day 1. Although we are probably generations away from that.
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Texas is looking to ban all abortions after 20 weeks with a few exception circumstances.

======================================

I don't think it's possible for a law to cover all the possible exceptions. The decision is with the woman and her doctor.

What I would like to know is who is going to pay for all babies if you make abortion illegal.

There was a thread on another board recently about a million dollar baby and who should pay. As near as I could tell the conservatives on that board believed the baby should die if the parents couldn't pay.
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The decision is with the woman and her doctor.

What I would like to know is who is going to pay for all babies if you make abortion illegal.

_____________

Is it still between a woman and her doctor at 35 weeks? If the baby can survive outside the womb, does she still have the right to terminate? Does the biological father have a say at anytime?

As for paying for the babies, I have an unpopular idea...let's start by limiting adoptions from foriegn countries. Currently we are adopting children from Russia, India, China etc. We're the only country on earth that outsources child bearing. As for the cost, are you saying a baby should be terminated because they are too expensive?
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This poll is better than most, though it could have done without the subjective flourishes. A proper examination of this poll should consider the following:

"No abortions, life begins at conception" is impossible for any thinking person to select. There are a lot of reasons to not like abortions, but "life begins at conception" is not one of them. Including this as the only reason to favor "No abortions, ever" does a disservice to hardcore antiabortionists who are, as often as not, driven by motives that have nothing at all to do with the health of the child.

"No restrictions, a woman's body is her choice" - this is of course the correct answer, notwithstanding the sanctimonious nod to women's rights. Exactly why will become clear through a discussion of the remaining items.

"No abortions after viability outside the womb." - Truthfully, I want to agree with this. But who defines viable? Does a child diagnosed in-utero with cyclopia count as viable? Antiabortion radicals don't want to recognize any exceptions to this and will reflexively invoke Gosnell as the Patron Saint of Late Term Abortions. Gosnell doesn't deserve the credit. And the doctors and mothers who find themselves forced to consider the possibility don't deserve the comparison.

"No abortions after the first heart beat" - that option is nice and clear so I have no comments there other than it is a mistaken attempt to equate "life" with observations of a particular physical process as deep in the brainstem (and therefore maximally separated from what we know as "consciousness") as a beating heart. If one personally imagines the heartbeat as being the spark of life, no one's going to stop them, and I suspect that the lack of scientific validity for their feelings is going to make a lot of difference.

"No abortions after 20 weeks" - again, an option that is unambiguous - good - though it reflects another arbitrary definition of "life" with no scientific basis for why abortions before 20 weeks are better than those after. See "bleeding heart radical antiabortionist 'feelings'" above.

This issue should be very simple for small-government conservatives to process. This is not a decision for big-government regulators to control. Abortion is a private matter between a woman, her doctor, and her partner (in that order). Note the lack of "government" in there. The infrastructure for that transaction to occur is already in place and (at least it was) properly regulated to ensure the public health. To support the anti-abortion movement is to want the government to put up walls between private citizens, their doctors, and the proper delivery of health care under a well-regulated capitalist framework. It runs contrary to everything else they say they're for.

I wish I knew what was really behind the anti-abortion movement. In all anti-abortion arguments there is undercurrent desire to punish the mother. To make her submit to God's will, as often as not. I think what a lot of these folks really want is a Sex-Law. Banning sex outside of marriage, or something like that. It's creepy that these people are so focused on the proper use, care and maintenance of bodily functions.
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As for the cost, are you saying a baby should be terminated because they are too expensive?
===================================

Not me, it was the folks against government funded health care.

What does "survive outside the womb" mean? Without medical attention?

http://boards.fool.com/hi-whafa-so-yes-then-let-them-die-rig...

http://boards.fool.com/not-just-cant-pay-but-also-put-themse...

I noticed you didn't answer the question. I don't see how limiting adoptions from foreign countries is going to pay for babies born here.
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This issue should be very simple for small-government conservatives to process. This is not a decision for big-government regulators to control. Abortion is a private matter between a woman, her doctor, and her partner (in that order). Note the lack of "government" in there. The infrastructure for that transaction to occur is already in place and (at least it was) properly regulated to ensure the public health. To support the anti-abortion movement is to want the government to put up walls between private citizens, their doctors, and the proper delivery of health care under a well-regulated capitalist framework. It runs contrary to everything else they say they're for.

I wish I knew what was really behind the anti-abortion movement. In all anti-abortion arguments there is undercurrent desire to punish the mother. To make her submit to God's will, as often as not. I think what a lot of these folks really want is a Sex-Law. Banning sex outside of marriage, or something like that. It's creepy that these people are so focused on the proper use, care and maintenance of bodily functions.


Further, it's an attempt to make people responsible for their actions. It doesn't matter if it makes things worse in the long run. That's the impression I got from some of the posts on the METMAR thread.
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This issue should be very simple for small-government conservatives to process. This is not a decision for big-government regulators to control. Abortion is a private matter between a woman, her doctor, and her partner (in that order). Note the lack of "government" in there. The infrastructure for that transaction to occur is already in place and (at least it was) properly regulated to ensure the public health. To support the anti-abortion movement is to want the government to put up walls between private citizens, their doctors, and the proper delivery of health care under a well-regulated capitalist framework. It runs contrary to everything else they say they're for.

I wish I knew what was really behind the anti-abortion movement. In all anti-abortion arguments there is undercurrent desire to punish the mother. To make her submit to God's will, as often as not. I think what a lot of these folks really want is a Sex-Law. Banning sex outside of marriage, or something like that. It's creepy that these people are so focused on the proper use, care and maintenance of bodily functions.


MV, have you ever really spoken to people with a firm belief against abortion IRL?

Almost every one I've ever spoken to equates abortion with infanticide. For them, even formulating abortion as a decision between a woman, her doctor, and her partner is missing the most critical person of all - the baby. Small-government conservatives would never consider infanticide to be a private decision outside the regulation of government, and those who are against abortion share in that decision.

So it's not really that hard to understand. They think that abortion kills a human baby. You (and I) might disagree with their starting point, but once you recognize where they're coming from, their policy positions aren't that tough to figure out.

Albaby
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I would say 20-25 weeks. Generally, this is plenty of time for a woman to make her choice of whether to terminate the pregnancy. This is also after the window when diagnostic tests can detect most serious birth defects, so the choice is informed.

Also, studies have shown that fetuses generally begin to show signs of consciousness only after the 25th week. Prior to this time, although structures of the nervous system are growing, they do not appear to have reached a level of complexity to be operational and there are no signals or brainwaves that indicate higher function.

I would make an exception to this rule when continuing the pregnancy would put a mother's life in danger.
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As near as I could tell the conservatives on that board believed the baby should die if the parents couldn't pay

The right wing has made this clear.
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If they believe it is infanticide then why do all their laws omit sanctions against the mother but only against the person performing the abortion?

I've heard them over and over again, when trying to sell Draconian anti-abortion laws, that there will be no sanctions agains the mother. You mean it's OK for a mother to commit infanticide?
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What does "survive outside the womb" mean? Without medical attention?

_____________

Better than 50% of survival with medical attention. Sure. If a child can live on it's own with the mother, why is it her choice? Isn't it a child at that point.

Although I'm open to hearing when that point can be. But nobody can tell me a woman asking for an abortion because she doesn't want a child in week 38 of her pregnancy should be allowed to have one.
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I don't see how limiting adoptions from foreign countries is going to pay for babies born here.

________________

Seriously, that's rather simple. Instead of adopting from overseas, people are adopting American babies. Adopt American should be a policy in this country. If you take away 10,000 Chinese adoptions and increase the number of adoptions of American born babies by 10,000 that's how it helps.
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Texas is looking to ban all abortions after 20 weeks with a few exception circumstances.

Texas is actually going much further by making access to clinics limited to only a handful of locations.
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MV, have you ever really spoken to people with a firm belief against abortion IRL?

Almost every one I've ever spoken to equates abortion with infanticide. For them, even formulating abortion as a decision between a woman, her doctor, and her partner is missing the most critical person of all - the baby. Small-government conservatives would never consider infanticide to be a private decision outside the regulation of government, and those who are against abortion share in that decision.
=============================================

Not, MV, but I do know some who are firm against abortion. The ones that I know are not the ones that say no gov paid health care.

Maybe those small government conservatives, who are against government subsidized health care are not anti-abortion conservatives.

I think there is too much of a tendency on the boards to lump people into the group based on one view they may have posted about.

That's why I tend to stay out of the discussions when it's "conservatives believe x" and "liberals believe y" when what individuals believe are all over the map.
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I can say that I've seen one family change their minds regarding abortion when they found out a daughter was carrying a fetus with a severe abnormality which would make it probably either die before being carried to term or during birth.
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If they believe it is infanticide then why do all their laws omit sanctions against the mother but only against the person performing the abortion?

When I've raised that question, the answer I've always gotten is that it is the doctor who performs the procedure and actually commits the infanticide. The other, more practical, response is that you only need to have severe penalties against the doctors - put the doctor in jail, and you don't need to jail the fifty or hundred (or however many) accessory mothers he practiced on.

I suspect that another real answer is that jailing mothers is politically unpopular, so that even anti-abortion advocates who do beleive that these women should be penalized can't get much support for including it in actual legislative proposals. I suspect (unfortunately) that another real reason is the same as the reason why we don't have very stringent DUI laws here in the U.S.: they're afraid that even though it's horrible and results in the (possible, in the case of DUI) death of another person, there's a good chance that someone they know and love might do it, and so they would rather not punish it to the degree it ought to be punished.

Albaby
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I suspect that another real answer is that jailing mothers is politically unpopular

Of course. It also knocks the cr@p out of their moral high ground.
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"This is not a decision for big-government regulators to control. Abortion is a private matter between a woman, her doctor, and her partner (in that order). Note the lack of "government" in there. The infrastructure for that transaction to occur is already in place and (at least it was) properly regulated to ensure the public health. To support the anti-abortion movement is to want the government to put up walls between private citizens, their doctors, and the proper delivery of health care under a well-regulated capitalist framework. It runs contrary to everything else they say they're for."

Perfectly stated, MV. I agree with you completely.
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Perfectly stated, MV. I agree with you completely.

As a civil libertarian, one has to also have some place in there for the rights of the unborn. That is the one individual that is not provided any consent in the procedure.

Everyone else involved has some choice or the ability to make a choice at some point.

This reminds me of the states that attempt to ban assisted suicide. By what right does a government have to get between a patient and their doctor?

Hawkwin
Pro-choice; and Pro-life.
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"As a civil libertarian, one has to also have some place in there for the rights of the unborn. That is the one individual that is not provided any consent in the procedure."

The difficulty with that is deciding at what point the 'unborn' becomes a person with rights. You are a person once you are born, in rare cases not long before birth. Beyond that, a blastocyst is not a person. With government issues, you have to come up with something clear and definable in the legal sense. The 'unborn' are not persons with rights (yet). To the state, they do not yes exist. Rightly so, in my opinion.

"Everyone else involved has some choice or the ability to make a choice at some point."

The people involved make the choice. A blastocyst or fetus cannot make a decision. To assign 'personhood' to a fetus is simply silly, and makes no sense at all.

"This reminds me of the states that attempt to ban assisted suicide. By what right does a government have to get between a patient and their doctor?"

In this case you are talking about a person - clearly a legal entity that the state can recognize and grants rights to.

These are very difficult questions. The only one I am quite sure of is that the government should NOT be making these decisions. As MV stated, "Abortion is a private matter between a woman, her doctor, and her partner (in that order)." I would add that no where in there is there a place for government, nor is there a place for someone else's religious views. This is a personal decision, and is rightly left to the persons involved.

We all know that we can do what is 'right' - as far as our personal views of ethics and morals. Where we cross the line is where we think we should force everyone else to live according to ours.
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Of course. It also knocks the cr@p out of their moral high ground.

I'm not sure I understand why - it's very common for folks to advocate legislative proposals that get part of what they want done, in circumstances where they can't get it all. Civil unions for same-sex couples, for example, were exactly that type of situation: the country wasn't ready for gay marriage, so advocates tried to get as much as they could given the political climate. I'd say that of the folks that I've spoken to who oppose abortion, most of them believed that if abortion is banned that there should be criminal penalties for women who get the procedure, but knew that would never be able to get passed.

Albaby
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MV, have you ever really spoken to people with a firm belief against abortion IRL?

Plenty. I get the impression that the primary opposition to abortion is that it's abused for the sake of convenience to facilitiate irresponsible sexual behavior. They would argue, in terms not dissimilar from this, that "if you're going to play, you have to pay." Their opposition is manifest in an expressed desire to punish people (mothers in particular) for reckless sexual behavior. Whether or not that is how they really feel, that's how it comes across.



Almost every one I've ever spoken to equates abortion with infanticide. For them, even formulating abortion as a decision between a woman, her doctor, and her partner is missing the most critical person of all - the baby. Small-government conservatives would never consider infanticide to be a private decision outside the regulation of government, and those who are against abortion share in that decision.

So it's not really that hard to understand. They think that abortion kills a human baby. You (and I) might disagree with their starting point, but once you recognize where they're coming from, their policy positions aren't that tough to figure out.


I'm going to let you in on a little secret. It is my personal gut feeling that abortion is a termination of life, or at least termination of the potential for life in a very probabilistic, or "meta" sense. What is the price for a life not allowed to happen? The implications are overwhelming to consider. I have a visceral reaction to the idea of abortion in general. If I visualize an alternate reality where my wife and I decided to abort rather than bring three beautiful children into the world, the thought makes me want to vomit, cry, and punch holes in the walls all at the same time - and then go hug my kids. I don't feel much differently about other people having abortions; elective ones, at least, where they might be denying this snuffing out the potential for another beautiful little person as a matter of convenience (the thought "what if that child is the next Hitler?" is a counterpoint, but I digress). I say this just to make it absolutely crystal clear that I'm not, in any sense, "pro abortion."

Having said that, the "saves the babies" blanket opposition to abortion is an emotional, uninformed, and selfish one. Selfish because it relies on personal belief (i.e. "life begins at conception") above an understanding of the situations actual women/doctors might be faced with in deciding an abortion is necessary. Regardless of what the opponents may "feel", there are situations under which any reasonable person would concede that abortion is the appropriate, even necessary, solution - as bad as that sucks. But at the core of it it's really none of their business.

Then when you consider the broader adverse effects of "anti-abortion" laws on undermining access to primary health care for millions of American women who will suffer (healthwise, financially, or both) without access to these services, it's no longer an abortion issue. Conservative Republicans have followed some weird moral hubris right over the edge on this one.
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What I would like to know is who is going to pay for all babies if you make abortion illegal.

There was a thread on another board recently about a million dollar baby and who should pay. As near as I could tell the conservatives on that board believed the baby should die if the parents couldn't pay.

_____________

Good question.

Who pays for abortions on demand if we go that route? Why?

If we keep the child, who pays for the upbringing, medical care, food, education, sitting and such? Why?

Once the child is born all kinds of expenses kick in and I don't think the public should bear the primary costs, just like I don't think the public should bear the primary cost of abortions.

People make choices and they have to learn to live with them responsibly.

Good luck legislating that.

Willy
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Seriously, that's rather simple. Instead of adopting from overseas, people are adopting American babies. Adopt American should be a policy in this country. If you take away 10,000 Chinese adoptions and increase the number of adoptions of American born babies by 10,000 that's how it helps.


Duh! Many American babies are black and there's competition for the white ones. Russian babies are white while Chinese babies are potential Nobel Prize winners.
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Speaking of adoptions...

After years of wondering why he didn't look like his younger sister or brother, a man finally got up the nerve to ask his mother if he was adopted.

"Yes, you were, son," his mother said as she started to cry softly. "But it didn't work out and they brought you back."
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Having said that, the "saves the babies" blanket opposition to abortion is an emotional, uninformed, and selfish one. Selfish because it relies on personal belief (i.e. "life begins at conception")
_______________

Actually that is not an emotional belief, it is a biologicial definition

When the life becomes a sentient being is a personal belief.

BiologySince there is no unequivocal definition of life, the current understanding is descriptive. Life is considered a characteristic of organisms that exhibit all or most of the following characteristics or traits:[29][31][32]

1.Homeostasis: Regulation of the internal environment to maintain a constant state; for example, electrolyte concentration or sweating to reduce temperature.
2.Organization: Being structurally composed of one or more cells — the basic units of life.
3.Metabolism: Transformation of energy by converting chemicals and energy into cellular components (anabolism) and decomposing organic matter (catabolism). Living things require energy to maintain internal organization (homeostasis) and to produce the other phenomena associated with life.
4.Growth: Maintenance of a higher rate of anabolism than catabolism. A growing organism increases in size in all of its parts, rather than simply accumulating matter.
5.Adaptation: The ability to change over time in response to the environment. This ability is fundamental to the process of evolution and is determined by the organism's heredity, diet, and external factors.
6.Response to stimuli: A response can take many forms, from the contraction of a unicellular organism to external chemicals, to complex reactions involving all the senses of multicellular organisms. A response is often expressed by motion; for example, the leaves of a plant turning toward the sun (phototropism), and chemotaxis.
7.Reproduction: The ability to produce new individual organisms, either asexually from a single parent organism, or sexually from two parent organisms.
These complex processes, called physiological functions, have underlying physical and chemical bases, as well as signaling and control mechanisms that are essential to maintaining life.

Now if you want to argue that a human fetus isn't sexually mature so that disqualifies it from being considered alive, then you are going to have to disqualify every child below the age of puberty and sterile adult as non-living, but they are certainly sentient beings.
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A blastocyst or fetus cannot make a decision.

Neither can a new born. Does that give people the right to kill a new born?


To assign 'personhood' to a fetus is simply silly, and makes no sense at all.

What if your pregnant wife was killed by some monster, which in turn killed the baby. There was no crime committed against the child she was carrying?

Then the flip side, if a woman has other children at home, and a decision has to be made in an emergency where one had to choose between the woman's life or the child she is carrying, what is the right decision. It depends on who you ask, and there is no wrong or right answer, but the Catholic Church thinks there is only one right answer, the baby is chosen.

I am just playing devil's advocate here. Calling people stupid and heartless no matter which side of the issue they are on is painting with a very broad brush.
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What I would like to know is who is going to pay for all babies if you make abortion illegal.

There was a thread on another board recently about a million dollar baby and who should pay. As near as I could tell the conservatives on that board believed the baby should die if the parents couldn't pay.

_____________

That is not funny.

I was told that by both of my older brothers.

Traumatic, I tell ya.

Willy
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Albaby..So it's not really that hard to understand. They think that abortion kills a human baby. You (and I) might disagree with their starting point, but once you recognize where they're coming from, their policy positions aren't that tough to figure out.

I respectfully disagree. Do you know one wingnut who would support feeding babies or giving them health care once they are born? Do you know one wingnut who would allow abortion causing pesticides to be controlled? Do you remember Romney saying he would get rid of the EPA? They don't care about facts or fetuses but they desperately want to control society.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-10-31/romney-seen-scuttli...


Do you remember Perry's double talk regarding the fact that his abstinence only position has increased teen pregnancies? Texas is ranked third in teen pregnancy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ngiJhmoFKkw

A few of these people may have legitimate concern for the unborn but the overwhelming majority simply want to be the rule makers and they don't care if their rules are fair or murderous just so long as they make them. Please don't give them credibility they in no way deserve.

proton
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This is a trick question posed by a male.

Any woman who's been pregnant knows there's uncertainty associated with when conception occurred. The due date is always given as plus or minus two weeks. A womans "cycle" can vary a lot - even if she's normally "regular".
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[ A blastocyst or fetus cannot make a decision. ]

"Neither can a new born. Does that give people the right to kill a new born?"

NO. But you knew that, surely.



[ To assign 'personhood' to a fetus is simply silly, and makes no sense at all. ]

"What if your pregnant wife was killed by some monster, which in turn killed the baby. There was no crime committed against the child she was carrying?"

No one said anything of the sort. What does your wild example have to do with my comment?



"Then the flip side, if a woman has other children at home, and a decision has to be made in an emergency where one had to choose between the woman's life or the child she is carrying, what is the right decision. It depends on who you ask, and there is no wrong or right answer, but the Catholic Church thinks there is only one right answer, the baby is chosen."

There is no wrong or right answer, as you say. But the decision should certainly not be up to the government, nor should it be made by any church.



"I am just playing devil's advocate here. Calling people stupid and heartless no matter which side of the issue they are on is painting with a very broad brush."

Agreed.
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Now if you want to argue that a human fetus isn't sexually mature so that disqualifies it from being considered alive, then you are going to have to disqualify every child below the age of puberty and sterile adult as non-living, but they are certainly sentient beings.



They are human beings because they have been born.
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A blastocyst or fetus cannot make a decision.
-----
Neither can a new born. Does that give people the right to kill a new born?




A newborn is a human being, and so the question is irrelevant.
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I respectfully disagree. Do you know one wingnut who would support feeding babies or giving them health care once they are born? Do you know one wingnut who would allow abortion causing pesticides to be controlled? Do you remember Romney saying he would get rid of the EPA? They don't care about facts or fetuses but they desperately want to control society.

Yes, I do - but that's not really relevant. Most (if not all) moral systems recognize that there can be different moral implications between action and inaction. There is a difference between not supporting social programs and infanticide. Indeed, many (if not most) folks who support those social programs have enough personal wealth that if they donated it all, it would save the lives of children in other nations. This does not mean that they are hypocrites, either - it just means that they fall on a different point on the spectrum of assigning moral weight to inaction vs action, and a different sense of what level of society (group vs. individual) that burden falls.

Make no mistake - every person I've spoken to IRL that opposes abortion genuinely believed that it was a form of infanticide, and one can oppose infanticide without necessarily supporting S-CHIP.

Albaby
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To the state, they do not yes exist. Rightly so, in my opinion.

But they do. States will often charge a person with a double homicide if someone kills a pregnant mother.

States also have penalties for pregnant women that terminate their baby without the aid of an abortion.
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Is it still between a woman and her doctor at 35 weeks? If the baby can survive outside the womb, does she still have the right to terminate? Does the biological father have a say at anytime?

How about the cases when you've put into legislation this "nothing after X weeks" and the medical cases come up - and they do come up - that no, the baby is not viable, and without the abortion, the mother's life is in danger as well.

This is what I loathe about these conversations. People want to put into place the "we want to control when X happens" forgetting entirely that Y also happens, which totally invalidates your line in the sand.

Also, it's between a woman and her doctor. There's a reason why there are only a handful of late-term abortion practitioners in the country, beside the fact that there are a bunch of murderous "pro-life" people running around.

It's because most doctors choose not to make these decisions, but the ones who do are the ones who believe most strongly that there are cases that it is the right thing to do in that circumstance.

So the woman who "wants an abortion because she doesn't want the baby" at 35 weeks is essentially a myth, but the ones who are faced with a heartbreaking and tragic medical circumstance are not, and your little either/or proposition is punishing people who are already devastated enough by the circumstances they find themselves in.

Enough. Stop attempting to pass legislation for problems that don't exist. There's enough heartbreak and tragedy in any situation that is leading to abortion without a bunch of people sticking their self-righteous noses in.

GSF
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Having said that, the "saves the babies" blanket opposition to abortion is an emotional, uninformed, and selfish one. Selfish because it relies on personal belief (i.e. "life begins at conception") above an understanding of the situations actual women/doctors might be faced with in deciding an abortion is necessary. Regardless of what the opponents may "feel", there are situations under which any reasonable person would concede that abortion is the appropriate, even necessary, solution - as bad as that sucks. But at the core of it it's really none of their business.

That's an interesting perspective, since I've most often heard the 'selfish' argument coming from the anti-abortion side. Issues of life and death of other human beings are almost always considered appropriately decided at the societal, not the individual, level. Doctors or relatives don't get to decide according to their own moral conscience what level of deterioration of bodily functions among the sick and elderly constitutes "death" for other people - society makes those rules, and they have to live by them. Heck, we impose limits on when people can choose to terminate their own lives, much less those of others. And of course, there's countless countless circumstances where society says, "no, we won't leave it up to the individuals involved to decide whether exchanging money for sex, or paying someone $5 an hour to mow your lawn, is moral or not" in far less important contexts than life or death.

So anti-abortion folks regard pro-choice folks as selfish - the idea that when you can kill another person should only be up to individual conscience which may or may not include what's best for that person, rather than a societal consensus which includes the interest of the person at risk of being killed, is very selfish to them. Again, all of that flows from the starting point that what's at stake is another human person in all cases of abortion (a starting point that I do not agree with personally).

As for the "situations," there are heartbreaking and tragic situations involving children and adults as well - children with devastating and unavoidably fatal (in the intermediate term) congenital disorders, adults utterly demolished by dementia and wasting illnesses - where we might all decide that allowing the passing of the stricken person would be best for all concerned. But we never leave it up to the conscience of individual relatives and doctors to take active steps to kill those people, and impose rules societally to ensure that the interests of the stricken individuals are taken into account in any decision even to withhold care.

Albaby
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this bears repeating

when you consider the broader adverse effects of "anti-abortion" laws on undermining access to primary health care for millions of American women who will suffer (healthwise, financially, or both) without access to these services, it's no longer an abortion issue. Conservative Republicans have followed some weird moral hubris right over the edge on this one.

also:

What is the price for a life not allowed to happen?

there are expenses, too, don't forget. i imagine the average net result of a life ends in the black after all operational expenses and earnings are fully accounted. ask an actuary. they probably have some kind of probability assessing rare producers like einstein, da vinci, darwin, bach, etc. or another for the hitler, pol pot, etc.
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As for the "situations," there are heartbreaking and tragic situations involving children and adults as well - children with devastating and unavoidably fatal (in the intermediate term) congenital disorders, adults utterly demolished by dementia and wasting illnesses - where we might all decide that allowing the passing of the stricken person would be best for all concerned. But we never leave it up to the conscience of individual relatives and doctors to take active steps to kill those people, and impose rules societally to ensure that the interests of the stricken individuals are taken into account in any decision even to withhold care.


these situations sometimes become a lot simpler when there's no health insurer and nobody can afford to sustain a tragedy with modern medicine any longer.
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[ To the state, they do not yes exist. Rightly so, in my opinion. ]

"But they do. States will often charge a person with a double homicide if someone kills a pregnant mother.

States also have penalties for pregnant women that terminate their baby without the aid of an abortion."

True, but these are extreme cases, and even then they do not have the same full rights of a citizen.

I think we are splitting hairs here. The point is that 'unborn' does not mean the same as 'person'. There is a necessary difference in status, before and after birth. You can argue the timeline details and determine viability, etc., but there still is no reason to cede the decision and responsibility AWAY from the individuals involved and TO the state. The only motivation for doing so is to promote once set of religious views onto everyone else.
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The point is that 'unborn' does not mean the same as 'person'. There is a necessary difference in status, before and after birth. You can argue the timeline details and determine viability, etc., but there still is no reason to cede the decision and responsibility AWAY from the individuals involved and TO the state.

You are presenting a strawman. I never suggested any of the above. I simply stated that the unborn should have some rights and they should have some protections at some point in the process.
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What a silly poll. Women should be able to do what they want to do with their own bodies. If there's an 8-month old fetus in said body, and the woman suddenly decides she doesn't want it, she should be able to find an abortionist to pull the baby out--in pieces if necessary--and throw it in a garbage can. What's the problem?
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[ The point is that 'unborn' does not mean the same as 'person'. There is a necessary difference in status, before and after birth. You can argue the timeline details and determine viability, etc., but there still is no reason to cede the decision and responsibility AWAY from the individuals involved and TO the state. ]

"You are presenting a strawman. I never suggested any of the above. I simply stated that the unborn should have some rights and they should have some protections at some point in the process."

The question is who has the right to make such a decision, the people involved or the government. I've clarified my reasons for saying the 'unborn' are not people, and the the government should not be involved in this kind of personal decision.
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The question is who has the right to make such a decision, the people involved or the government.

False choice.

The people have a right to chose, up until a point society, through government, deems otherwise. The unborn need not be a person for society and government to have a role and a reason in limiting a person's ability to terminate something that may be considered less than a person.

I find it rather amazing at times that people (not necessarily you but perhaps) have no issue with no restrictions at all on terminating an unborn human while at the same time extending far more rights and protections on what a person may do to an animal or pet that they own. The animal or pet is not a human but as society, we accept the fact that government has a role in limiting what we may do to that entity.
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I agree with ModernViking. Both in his conclusions and especially on his response to "viability". Let me quote his response:

Truthfully, I want to agree with this. But who defines viable? Does a child diagnosed in-utero with cyclopia count as viable? Antiabortion radicals don't want to recognize any exceptions to this and will reflexively invoke Gosnell as the Patron Saint of Late Term Abortions. Gosnell doesn't deserve the credit. And the doctors and mothers who find themselves forced to consider the possibility don't deserve the comparison.

So, let me start with the idea that I also instinctively want to agree with "up until viability". The naive (but understandable) response is "Once the fetus could independently survive on its own, then we have to start thinking of the fetus as an independent life. After all, if the mother prematurely delivered at 30 weeks, we would instantly change the status of the fetus to 'preemie baby', why shouldn't we as society starting thinking of the fetus as 'preemie baby' as soon as that is possible?"

Why is that naive? Firstly, because of the cases that ModernViking lays out. The most common case for a late term abortion, if I recall correctly, is that the fetus isn't going to be viable.

But I also know (please respect my privacy on why) that even in a fetus without complication, viability is a sliding scale. Babies born at 39 weeks aren't as healthy as babies at 40 weeks. Babies born at 30 weeks are much more likely to survive than they used to be, but thinking of a 30 week fetus as a fully developed baby is a complete fallacy. Who are we as a society to tell a doctor when a fetus is "viable". About when it is ethical to perform a procedure. As ModernViking says, that is for the woman, doctor, and parter to decide. (Maybe I put more of the burden on the doctor than he does.)

But, even more importantly, we have to think about why we are concerned with a woman choosing to have a late term abortion. Are we afraid that women went through 7 months of pregnancy only to make the sudden flip decision that they were sick of being pregnant and want to abort? That they will take the decision too lightly? That there is some kind of eugenics based decisions going on here?

But there is no evidence that I can see of any of that. Late term abortions are insanely difficult to obtain these days. And the doctors that do perform late term abortions legally endure great personal sacrifice in order to perform them. This isn't anything women enter into lightly, and they still do have to convince a doctor that what they want to do is medically ethical.

If someone could show me evidence that a cult in New Mexico was routinely performing late term abortions in an eugenics program, I would be more sympathetic. But there isn't any evidence of that. All evidence is that regulations about late term abortions only put women in impossibly difficult situations (like women with fetuses with horrible birth defects) in even more impossible situations. All evidence is that this "issue" of later term abortions is deliberately being introduced as an "ick factor" argument that pre-supposes bad behavior where no bad behavior exists.

Until someone can convince me that there is a problem, I don't want the government to be forcing solutions on anyone.

--CH
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If someone could show me evidence that a cult in New Mexico was routinely performing late term abortions in an eugenics program, I would be more sympathetic.

The logic you apply in your analysis is odd. You state that you generally agree with the arguement of viabilty but dismiss restrictions based on such because you don't believe such occurs with enough frequency to prohibit such.

To use a crass response to illustrate a point, just how many babies need die for you to be sympathetic?

The Guttmacher Institute (they advocate for abortion rights so their numbers are not likely biased against abortion) estimates that roughly 1000 late term abortions occur every year in the US, or less than 1% of all abortions. Is 1000 enough for you to be sympathetic? If not, how high would that number to be? Is 1000 a year considered a problem? If not, how high would it need to go before you would think there is a problem?
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[ The question is who has the right to make such a decision, the people involved or the government. ]

"False choice."

So I've been told, often, but the logic never seems to be there to support that idea. 'Because' simply isn't a valid reason. I would argue that it is precisely the choice.

"The people have a right to chose, up until a point society, through government, deems otherwise."

Society has already chosen. The right to choose has been the law of the land for decades. No one is forced in either direction. That is the hallmark of personal liberty. Those that champion the removal of those rights wish to force everyone to follow their beliefs.

The Supreme Court heard many challenges to abortion rights over the years, yet continues to uphold the idea that this is not a decision for government to make in a society that values personal liberty. The reason the struggle continues is that there are those who feel the need to force everyone else to follow their personal views on this. Most often it is based in religious belief, thinly veiled as a noble humanitarian stance. As it stands, the decision is left to the individuals involved, as it should be. Those that don't believe it is right are free to choose, as are those that do. There is no better solution.

"The unborn need not be a person for society and government to have a role and a reason in limiting a person's ability to terminate something that may be considered less than a person."

Sorry, but I see no reason to turn over this kind of decision to government. My rather admittedly cold hearted sounding response to the above is "Why"? On what basis do you think that the people directly involved, the woman carrying the fetus should not be allowed to make that decision? That the decision should be made by the government?

"I find it rather amazing at times that people (not necessarily you but perhaps) have no issue with no restrictions at all on terminating an unborn human while at the same time extending far more rights and protections on what a person may do to an animal or pet that they own. The animal or pet is not a human but as society, we accept the fact that government has a role in limiting what we may do to that entity."

Not sure what you mean here, but I don't think the treatment of animals is relevant to the question at hand.
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Society has already chosen. The right to choose has been the law of the land for decades. No one is forced in either direction. That is the hallmark of personal liberty. Those that champion the removal of those rights wish to force everyone to follow their beliefs.

Society can and often changes it's mind - or are you one of those people that believes in original intent and would never change the laws or the Constitution - you know, on things like guns or voting rights?

I generally consider you to be intelligent but if you are suggesting we live a society without any restrictions on personal liberty, then there really is nothing else for us to talk about. Nothing could be further form the truth. Government restricts many personal liberties and always has. We even sometimes change our minds by taking away liberties previously granted - or not explicitly prohibited.

On what basis do you think that the people directly involved, the woman carrying the fetus should not be allowed to make that decision? That the decision should be made by the government?

To state once again, because I believe that at some point, typically around high viability, the unborn has rights. Many states recognize that right in one form or another - can you admit that? I don't suggest that the mother must sacrifice her rights, only that there is a timer by which she must execute them or give up such right to the unborn (assuming healthy mom and baby).

Not sure what you mean here, but I don't think the treatment of animals is relevant to the question at hand.

Oh but it is. Society recognizes that the right of the animal or pet may by higher than your right as the owner of such. Your liberty to do what you like with it is restricted.

Lastly:

The Supreme Court heard many challenges to abortion rights over the years, yet continues to uphold the idea that this is not a decision for government to make in a society that values personal liberty.

I don't know every single case SCOTUS has seen on this but the above statement is not correct. SCOTUS has on at least two occasions ruled that states can place restrctions on abortions. Specifically:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayotte_v._Planned_Parenthood_of...

O'Connor's unanimous opinion[edit]In its ruling the Court found that the following three propositions were established:

1."States have the right to require parental involvement when a minor considers terminating her pregnancy."
2."A State may not restrict access to abortions that are 'necessary, in appropriate medical judgment for preservation of the life or health of the mother.' Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pa. v. Casey, 505 U. S. 833, 879 (plurality opinion)."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gonzales_v._Planned_Parenthood

Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for the Court that the respondents had failed to prove that Congress lacked authority to ban this abortion procedure. Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Samuel Alito, Justice Clarence Thomas, and Justice Antonin Scalia agreed with the Court's judgment, joining Kennedy's opinion.

-------------

Care to try yet one more time?
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[ Society has already chosen. The right to choose has been the law of the land for decades. No one is forced in either direction. That is the hallmark of personal liberty. Those that champion the removal of those rights wish to force everyone to follow their beliefs. ]

"Society can and often changes it's mind - or are you one of those people that believes in original intent and would never change the laws or the Constitution - you know, on things like guns or voting rights?"

Yes, society can and does change its mind, and has done so. The Constitution was written with an evolution in mind. However, you cannot deny that this issue has been challenged repeatedly, not by those who wish to exercise rights, but rather by those who wish to limit right of others. You'll find few examples where we have changed our minds that also meet that same description.

"I generally consider you to be intelligent but if you are suggesting we live a society without any restrictions on personal liberty, then there really is nothing else for us to talk about."

Of course I did not suggest that at all.

[ On what basis do you think that the people directly involved, the woman carrying the fetus should not be allowed to make that decision? That the decision should be made by the government? ]

"To state once again, because I believe that at some point, typically around high viability, the unborn has rights. Many states recognize that right in one form or another - can you admit that? I don't suggest that the mother must sacrifice her rights, only that there is a timer by which she must execute them or give up such right to the unborn (assuming healthy mom and baby)."

You've added a few qualifiers, and I appreciate that. Yes, I know that some states have legislated rights to the 'unborn'. Those rights range from zero to some very tricky definitions in various places. One wonders how we square that as a society. Maybe a drive across the border to a neighboring state would result in completely different 'rights'. Weird.

You say that the mother should be forced to abdicate her rights at some point, but that point is VERY difficult to define and pinpoint. You have also qualified that a healthy mom and baby be part of the equation.

I think there are very, very few late term abortions that would meet your criteria, assuming these qualifiers. Still, I have to restate my opinion here. This decision should be a between a woman, her doctor, and her partner. I know you disagree, but we'll just have to live with that.

[ Not sure what you mean here, but I don't think the treatment of animals is relevant to the question at hand. ]

"Oh but it is. Society recognizes that the right of the animal or pet may by higher than your right as the owner of such. Your liberty to do what you like with it is restricted."

True. How that is relevant really escapes w=me, though.

[ The Supreme Court heard many challenges to abortion rights over the years, yet continues to uphold the idea that this is not a decision for government to make in a society that values personal liberty. ]

"I don't know every single case SCOTUS has seen on this but the above statement is not correct. SCOTUS has on at least two occasions ruled that states can place restrctions on abortions. Specifically:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ayotte_v._Planned_Parenthood_of...

Understood. I didn't mean to imply SCOTUS never made any sort of rulings on this. What I meant was that overall, Roe v Wade (and the fundamental Constitutional interpretations on this issue) has been upheld repeatedly, despite numerous challenges.
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You've added a few qualifiers, and I appreciate that.


The qualifiers are not new. My first post with an opinion above I stated that everyone has choice.

Later I stated that I was pro-choice and pro-life. I would think that I have been clear that I support choice. Perhaps not.

but that point is VERY difficult to define and pinpoint. You have also qualified that a healthy mom and baby be part of the equation.

If it was easy, there would be no discussion. Most things worth doing are not easy, and often it takes a few mistakes before we get it right.
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[ You've added a few qualifiers, and I appreciate that. ]

"The qualifiers are not new. My first post with an opinion above I stated that everyone has choice."

The qualifiers I am referring to are when you said "I don't suggest that the mother must sacrifice her rights, only that there is a timer by which she must execute them or give up such right to the unborn (assuming healthy mom and baby)." The timer and the assumption of a healthy mom and baby is a big one. I don't know the stats, but I would guess that most late term abortions are related to a health issue. But your initial statement really is not true - you are indeed suggesting that the woman involved have her rights taken away if she violates the 'timer' (which we all understand is very difficult to define).

"Later I stated that I was pro-choice and pro-life. I would think that I have been clear that I support choice. Perhaps not."

Not sure how you can be both, but I suspect you didn't mean to say that. I also obviously support choice. To me, I still see no reason to cede this to government. This is personal, difficult, and should be left to the woman involved, her doctor, and her partner.

"If it was easy, there would be no discussion. Most things worth doing are not easy, and often it takes a few mistakes before we get it right."

I agree, this is a very complex and difficult subject. The "right" thing is sometimes hard. But what is "right' to put to into law is often very different than what is "right" to an individual person or persons. Law should only consist of what we all (or most) agree with as common values. That is the nature of democracy. Anything that does not meet that definition should not be forced on the populace.
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I am done since we are largely talking in circles but I wanted to focus on your last comment:

Law should only consist of what we all (or most) agree with as common values. That is the nature of democracy. Anything that does not meet that definition should not be forced on the populace.

Really? So if most of us, as part of our common values, believed that gay marriage should be illegal, you would be OK with that?

What if most of us wanted to go to war in Iran? Or most of us wanted to cancel ACA? Would you force ACA on the populace if the majority no longer wanted it?

Would you support a restriction on abortion based on weeks if there was majority support for such?

I don't think majority opinion is necessarily how we should make decisions. I don't know why you would support such.
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[ Law should only consist of what we all (or most) agree with as common values. That is the nature of democracy. Anything that does not meet that definition should not be forced on the populace. ]

"Really? So if most of us, as part of our common values, believed that gay marriage should be illegal, you would be OK with that?"

I see where you are going with these examples. What you are overlooking is that one of the common values we have is that we must abide by our own set of rules - the Constitution. So yes, and I believe you made the point earlier, that ultimately society can and does change the rules, based on what we all (or most) want. Gay marriage is a good example, because it IS changing, and within a generation or two no one will think twice about a same sex marriage.

As for going to war, that isn't something that is directly up to society. We've seen some recent examples that show a Commander in Chief can commit to wars that have not been approved by our society citizens at all. But we can correct those things we find in opposition to out beliefs at the ballot box. When we are divided, politically speaking, we are our own checks and balances, and power shifts between the parties over time.

"I don't think majority opinion is necessarily how we should make decisions. I don't know why you would support such."

Democracy is ultimately about majority rule, along with the rule of law requirement. Not necessarily on a decision by decision basis, though.

Thanks for a reasonable discussion.
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