Daily GUIDE-ance:

Monday, January 21, 2008

My thoughts

Happy MLK day. Several years ago I read MLK’s autobiography, and while I can’t say I am an MLK expert, I found his book to be… inspiring, and the man impressed me. (He was a Baptist preacher BTW- weren’t we just talking about Baptists?) Christianity gave us Martin Luther King Jr, Islam produced Malcolm X. Make of it what you will. (MLK was also influenced considerably by Gandhi who was, I believe, a Hindu) Anyhow if you have never watched his “I have a dream” speech, here it is. I cried the first time I watched it, believe it or not.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PbUtL_0vAJk

I’m not sure MLK would be really pleased with what has happened to his movement since his death. In my inexpert opinion, he really was a uniter, and so much of the so-called civil right movement of today seems to be focused on division. It’s sad.

So on a slightly related note, for several years I have been wanting to write out some thoughts I have had about… well I will tell you in a sec- and today seems like a good day for it. Here goes:

Another thing I am not an expert on is the Civil War, and the years and attitudes leading up to it. But, I’m not a total numskull there either- I have read several books on the subject, and I find that period of history very interesting indeed. And I think it is monstrously relevant to our time.

One thing that is continuously astonishing to me, as I look at the past, is how so many people were able to justify in their minds and souls that which is universally recognized by us as a deeply evil practice: Slavery. Half the country accepted and defended the idea that a human being could be property. Half the country not only put up with the practice, but, were deeply, even passionately convinced that they were in the right to do so. How?! People are very good at tricking themselves but what kind of person can convince themselves that slavery is ok? It wasn’t just a few mentally ill sickos- it was a topic that half the country was willing to go to war with the other half over. It was a topic debated with all gravity by the most respected thinkers of the time. Fredrick Douglas in his “Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglas” (he was a runaway slave, his book is awesome) states that it was commonly known among the slaves that you were far better off with an irreligious master than with a churchman for a master- because the religious masters were convinced on a religious level that slavery was a moral practice.

Question: If you had lived in those times, which side of the slavery issue would you have been on? If you were a white born in the south, are you the type of person who evaluates yourself honestly and deeply enough that you would have rejected slavery? Would you have been like Robert E Lee- a man who thought slavery was wrong, but fought to defend it anyway? Would you have been like Lincoln- believing slavery to be wrong, but who ran for president as a moderate- in essence saying “Yes its bad, but there is nothing we can do about it today“? Would you possibly have been an ardent abolitionist? Maybe you would you have been like John Brown?

You can’t really know what you would have done or thought, but I believe I have a yardstick that is a good indicator of what side of the slavery issue you would have been on and it is this:

Where do you stand on the abortion issue of in our time?
I believe that history will look back on abortion in our time with the same revulsion and horror that we regard slavery with in our time. I believe that if you are pro-choice now, you probably would have been all about states rights in the 1850’s.

Take a look with me at the arguments in favor of each- If you embrace one, you embrace the other.
1) A Negro is not exactly human, so we can treat it differently.
An embryo is not exactly human, so we can treat it differently.

2) While slavery is not desirable, it is an economic necessity. (Not true as it turns out)
A young girl would be justified in getting an abortion, so she can get an education, for reasons of economics.

3) A woman’s body is her property and she can do as she wishes with it.
A slave is a man’s property and he must be allowed to as he wishes with it.

Slavery was an issue that divided the country. Half thought it was wrong, half thought it was right. There was no middle ground acceptable to either side. The tragedy is that we found a middle ground anyway, for so long. And while it was debated, the atrocities continued to pile up. There are enough abortions committed in America to make a 9-11 disaster every week. Easily.
http://www.abortionfacts.com/online_books/love_them_both/why_cant_we_love_them_both_17.asp

We have our John Browns today. He was the man who thought he had been ordained by God to start a war that would purge slavery from the land, so he just started shooting. It didn’t work. We have people who bomb clinics. Not a good idea.

But I do believe it is as pressing an issue in our time as the slavery issue was then. It’s been almost 150 since the war, and we almost have the mess cleaned up. That’s why I am as rabidly pro-life as I am. This next president may appoint Supreme Court judges with a clear eye on this issue- he will certainly appoint lesser court judges. And there are many other things a president can do- President Bush has refused to allow US tax money to fund programs that sponsor abortion, for example.

I’m not exactly saying vote Republican. What am I saying is this :
Evaluate yourself rigorously.

63 comments:

Anonymous said...

Very well put, John. I think the South was right on states rights, wrong on slavery, but my family fought for the North during the civil war. Obviously I'm pro-life. The thing I fear, is that the country is so divided at this point, that we may be in for another civil war. People are so rabidly one-way or the other anymore, that we have a tendency to demonize each other as people instead of trying to persuade others of our viewpoints in a civilized manner. And I understand. I wanna beat sense into people who disagree with me politically and morally, because I'm obviously right, and how can anyone be dumb enough to think any other way? But I like to think that if we are polite but firm, we will win more people to our way of thinking than if we're hateful and ugly (flies with honey). I have heard so many stories of people who have left a certain left-leaning party because they've become disillusioned with the ugliness in their own party that they are constantly accusing others of.

I hope that somewhat went along with the topic du-jour.

The amazing thing to me is: Where did the religious people find justification for slavery in the Bible? Even when it talks about slavery in the OT, you can only take slaves of people who owe you something (I think?) but then you are only allowed to keep them for 7 years, then you have to let them go. Plus, I think you have to still pay them something. (I haven't really studied that passage much...never really had a need for slaves.) And you have to treat them nicely. Justifying slavery by using the Bible is like justifying polygamy because King Solomon had a zillion wives. (Even though, we learn that his wives were his downfall.)

MC

Anonymous said...

Aren't they always?!

J

timpani76 said...

I think that the reason why it was so hard for the South to let go of slavery was because it had been going on for hundreds of years. The rest of the western world (Europe, England) had let go of slavery in the 1600's, but we were just holding on to it. It was "right" in people's minds by virtue of longstanding practice.

Abortion has only been going on (legally) in America for 35 years, but people make it sound already like an inalienable right that has been around since the Founding Fathers came up with it. Some high level democrats used to be pro-life, and are not pro-choice. Why? Why has this issue changed so much in such a short period of time? Still 35 years is long enough for 2 generations of Americans to have grown up with this being legal? How long before no one remembers what it was like to NOT have this option.

Why do women do this? When we have so many different forms of birth control, so many choices in the case of accidental pregnancy, and so many choices with education, careers, and our lives, do we have to resort to this ugly act of violence to the most helpless of all creatures?

My sisters, and so many other people say "It's a woman's right to choose, this is between a woman and her doctor, if we get rid of abortion, what's next?"

If we get rid of abortion, what could be next? Are they afraid of eugenics? Or enslavement? Didn't we already go there?

My sister has said "I would never get an abortion, but I would never take away a woman's right to choose!" Why would you abdicate something you yourself would never do? Would you or I say "well, I would never drink and drive, but I'm not going to stop my friend from killing himself!" Or, "Suicide is a valid option."

The abortion rate has gone down from 1.7 million a year to 1.3 million a year. There have been 4 times as many babies killed as people were killed during the holocaust (40 million babies vs 10 million people killed during the Holocaust).

This needs to be stopped! We need to unhinge this before Abortion becomes "right" in people's minds because it has been around so long. It already frightens me how easy it is for a 14 year old girl to get major surgery (that can cause infertility and several other complications later in life). Why is this legal for young girls to get this done when nothing else of this scale would be legal. Does this scare the crap out of anyone else?

ps I was pro-choice before I had kids, what does that say about me on the slavery issue?

lizS said...

hey!!

lizS said...

that last was directed at my loving husband.
it doesn't make sense to me that people don't take abortion seriously anymore, except for those of us who are intelligent, but i think that timpani has a good point in that people have just gotten used to the option being there. i have known girls in high school who had abortions on their lunch hour, and were back in school for their next class. it's just so easy! the thing is, it's just as easy to get contreceptives, so i just don't get it. i was on the fence for this issue for a long time, because i couldn't see taking away someone's right to choose, but then i realized the thing is is that the woman who has the abortions is doing a couple of major things wrong: she is taking away someone else's right to live, which no one has the right to do. class A no-no. also, she is not taking responsibility for her actions. abortion is the easy way out, which might have just answered my question of "why do people do it?" you can get it done in an hour, you can be back to work at the very most the next day, and it's like nothing ever happened. it's a classic no responsibility option, so what does that teach the younger generation? instant gratification is happiness, and no matter what you do, you can get away with it with no reprecussions. that breeds a weak generation doesn't it?

Renae said...

The thing that these pro-choice people aren't getting is that, the vast, vast majority of the women / girls who get these abortions have already blown their choice. The choice comes in when you are having unprotected sex. That was your choice. Sure, there are some out there that will say, "I got raped. I didn't have that choice." Well, I'm sorry, that is a terrible thing. I certainly wouldn't want to be in that situation. However, because someone took away your virtue, does that give you the right to take away the life of another person? I don't think so. I'm sorry, it's not pleasant, but there are thousands of couples out there that would be overjoyed to adopt your baby. But I repeat, the vast, vast, vast majority of the people out there getting abortions made their choice the day they decided to have unresponsible sex. Adoption is a great option for them too.

timpani76 said...

I read in Time magazine recently that the age group that supported abortion the most were 18-30 year old males. I think that these women may feel a great deal of pressure from the people who got them pregnant in the first place (the young males).

I honestly believe that the rate of abortion in this country is a sign that America is failing these women. There partners are failing them, society is failing them by not offering them education (to keep from getting pregnant) or support (in the case of someone giving a baby up for adoption). They feel trapped, alone, and pressured by the partner who probably convinced them to have unprotected sex in the first place.

I just saw a great chick movie called "Juno" that had some crude parts, but basically showed a 16 year old girl having to deal with things that only adults should have to deal with. She had thrown herself into the world of adults because she had not used protection, and she decided to not have an abortion and give the baby up for adoption. The scene where she was in an abortion clinic was actually disturbing (before she ran out).

It was, though, a great portrayal of why teenage girls should not get pregnant in the first place. They have very little idea how to deal with the results! Teenage girls hear about abortion and think it is there only way out, so they take it! They very rarely hear about the adoption option, or if they do they hear about how hard it is. Also, abortion clinics do not give facts about the baby or offer ultrasounds for women to see what the baby looks like. Both these options I think would cut the abortion rate in half. Maybe they should pass legislation the forbids abortion clinics from making a profit because they seem to be so centered on getting the deed over with that they are blinding these women to some very real facts and dangers.

90% of women regret having an abortion!

Anonymous said...

The reason the surgical abortion rate has gone down is the availability of the abortion pill RU-487, which they don't technically count as an abortion when collecting this kind of data. We can get a more accurate idea of the number of abortions if we can get a look at the number of RU-487 prescriptions filled. Yes, it does scare the poop out of me. And as an interesting aside note: most Americans are actually opposed to abortion. The problem is, they DO look on it now as a "women's rights" and not a "human rights" issue. The pro-life movement made a fatal mistake by allowing the pro-abortion movement to define the terms of the argument. They use terms that make them sound loving and caring: "Pro-choice" and a "woman's right to choose," and make pro-lifers sound hateful: "Anti-abortion." For years I have been trying to think of a good "Anti" name for the abortion machine, but all I can think of is "anti-life" for lack of a better idea. So much of the argument is actually symantics. If they can add a negative to the beginning of our title as pro-lifers, the mind automatically thinks negatively about that person's view, even if it's a GOOD negative. How many Germans or Austrians wouldn't have personally tortured and starved Jews, but would not try to stop someone else from doing it?

As a woman who has had a miscarriage that ended with a D&C, I have to say, I don't know how a girl could have something like this done without anyone knowing. This is a serious procedure, and very painful, with recovery time needed. The thing is, no one is informing these girls, and so many of them who have had abortions have no idea what they're doing, and end up feeling violated all over again. Someone very close to me wound up pregnant (date rape situation) in high school in the late '70s, and the nurse who confirmed the pregnancy told her in the same breath,"Well, it's true, honey, you are pregnant, but don't worry, I'll get you an appointment, we'll have this taken care of in no time, and you can get back to your life." And when this young girl told her she wasn't going to have an abortion, the nurse made her feel like a fool,"What do you MEAN, you're not going to have an abortion?! You're going to ruin your life! etc..." I think the reason many young girls have abortions is because they truly believe they have no other choice, because no one is giving them any other options, and many of them are bullied into it (by those advising them or the ones who are also responsible for their predicament). These poor young people don't think they have any other choice. "Choice" to them is not having any other viable option available. (This young lady put her baby up for adoption, and last she heard, he was actually in the ministry somewhere near Las Vegas.)

You make a good point, Timpani, about the abortion clinics not offering ultrasounds or other options, of course if they did that, it would be bad for business. I have a friend who goes down to the Hopeless Clinic in Granite every time the doors are open to try to plead with the girls not to go through with it. She offers ultrasounds so they can see their babies, and she also offers support to those who choose to keep their babies or put them up for adoption (including helping them find families). The problem is, they have these "deathscorts" to usher the girls in and out (to keep them "safe" from my friend who's trying to help these girls) of the office and keep them from seeing and hearing the people who truly can help them. It's a nightmare. I know it's wrong, but I used to go down there weekly, and I just couldn't do it anymore. It's so sad and demoralizing. I have so much respect for the ones who can go down there day in and day out and not grow weary. I know they have their treasure stored up in heaven. She has saved many, many babies from slaughter over the years because she works tirelessly because of her love of the unborn, and their mothers. (Yes, there are those who scream curses and judgment upon the girls who go in, but they are few and far between, and sometimes I wonder if they aren't planted there. We do not advocate that kind of behavior. There's always the fringe element, though.)

MC

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, here's another point: The biggest advocates of abortion before it was legal had racist reasons for wanting it legalized calling those races "human weeds" that they wanted to see exterminated. (Margaret Sanger- white supremacist and elitist, beloved by abortion advocates nationwide.)

MC

timpani76 said...

Good point Mary, about the racist (pro-eugenics) people who were pro-abortion. Ann Coulter talks about that in one of her books (I can't remember which one because I've read like 5 Ann Coulter books).

Anonymous said...

Sad news on the political front: Thompson is out of the running.

MC

timpani76 said...

Was Fred Thompson ever really in the running? I just don't think his heart was ever in it (but he did pull votes away from Huckabee!)

Anonymous said...

Yeah, he wasn't ever a big frontrunner or anything, though lots of people like him. I really hope at this point that Romney gets the nomination. I don't think I could happily vote for Huckabee, and I for sure won't vote for McCain or Giuliani.

MC

timpani76 said...

I think Guiliani is out of the running for the most part too. McCain went from being a moderate to being a RINO (republican in name only) and I was really disappointed in him on a lot of things this year. I would have voted for him the first year Bush ran because I used to like him so much.

Anonymous said...

Yeah. While we're on the subject of abortion, I'm sure you know about McCain-Feingold (because you seem well informed), where McCain, and 4 FAR left senators tried to keep a pro-life organization from being able to take out ads reminding people of candidate's views and voting records on the abortion issue within 90 (or was it 60?) days of an election within the district the candidates were running in. (This was supposed to include any special interest group, but the target was this particular group.) The Supreme Court blocked it by only one vote. Which I think is shocking, since the first amendment was written specifically to allow freedom of political speech, especially in print.

MC

Anonymous said...

Actually MC although i have heard the Mcain-feingold name bandied around I did not know what it was so thanks.

Good comments all- thanks everyone-

I do wish we had a serious prochoicer to chime in on all this though. Not so we could tear him her it apart, but pro-choicers are pro-choicers for reasons, and I'd like to hear those reasons articulated clearly. I have yet to hear a life/choice debate not turn into a snit-fest.

I did once read an article by a choicer who articulated some fair talking points, the main one being - if abortion becomes illegal, how and on who will the law come down when a woman has an illegal abortion?. I dont have time right now to chat this point up but I would like to later.

J

Anonymous said...

Did you know that Judy Garland's mom and dad tried to have her aborted? Her parents went to a family friend who was a doctor and asked him to do it. He told them that he wouldn't do it, because it would be the biggest mistake of their lives, and they would regret it forever. No wonder the girl was messed up-she was just a paycheck and prestige to her folks (besides the fact that her mom got her addicted to drugs...hag). I guess they would prosecute like they did in the pre-abortion days when they found out about them. As to the safety issue: Women die in abortion clinics. Many of them are young, underaged, uninformed girls, so in my opinion, the "safety" issue, is kinda dumb. Yeah, it's safer than using a coat hanger in a back alley, but if a girl goes home after having an abortion, has complications, and her family doesn't know about it, they may not have time to figure out what's going on before she's dead. I've heard stories over the radio, in interviews with families about this happening. I know you didn't mention the safety issue, but to many people it's a big argument for abortion.

Here's the bottom line to me: There are so many options these days. There's no excuse for someone to get pregnant who didn't want to get pregnant in the first place. The resulting baby didn't make the decision to exist, and shouldn't be the one to pay the penalty for it. The baby is the most innocent of the entire process- conception to gruesome murder-all without the benefit of even some kind of pain-killer while they are torn to shreds or burned alive with saline.

If only we knew a serious anti-lifer who wasn't afraid to lose an argument.

GOOD NIGHT! I have become a John Sever Fan Club junkie- I'm your biggest fan, John! WOOOOO!

MC

timpani76 said...

Here John, here are Danielle's arguments for pro-choice (part of an ongoing debate Danielle and I have)

... their pro-life stances were really insane sounding. Phrases like "anit-life" and "baby killers" come off like propaganda. I couldn't believe that most of the reasons behind voting republican were pro-life and that seemed to be one of the few points coming up. What about global affairs, the WAR IN IRAQ, education, the health care crisis, immigration, decriminalization of marijuana (which would help our prison system crisis immensely), etc. We should all consider several sources of media - liberal and conservative, and not just from the US.

I appreciated that you seemed to understand that there are other issues out there at least. I'm sorry if I seem angry, but I could easily use words like "anti-choice" or "anti-women, anti-feminism, counter production of women's rights", but I never have and I never will because I don't believe it's right to use word play to cause guilt like that. I feel terrible for what women who have had abortions must go through because of that. I believe everyone has a right to believe what they want to believe and choose for themselves what they believe is right inside the law. You can't force a woman to believe in God anymore than you can force a drug addict to stop doing drugs (outside of imprisonment).

(Danielle's opinion of abortion clinics, which she was inside when she took a friend to get the morning after pill. We were discussing the movie Juno, when this came up.)

I thought the abortion clinic scene was pretty f***ing accurate... sterile environment, lots of women sitting around nervous, the jar of free condoms, an annoying clerk who doesn't seem empathetic or helpful at all. Have you ever been in an abortion clinic? They're terrible. I wouldn't wish that choice on anyone.


(This was a letter from a a few months ago)

I don't have time right now because I'm at work, but I have just as many shocking statistics that I could show you that is pro-choice rhetoric. There's always going to be something shocking for either side. What I really don't like is that the last bill that was anti-abortion had absolutely no exception for the health of the mother.

Also consider that in the first trimester, the fetus isn't even a fetus yet - it's a grouping of cells with no heartbeat, and no brain activity. Call it killing a baby if you want, but you've taken birth control which means that for the first few months, you were still ovulating, so all you were doing was evacuating potential groupings of cells. What about the morning after pill? It's basically like an uber dose of birth control - are you against that?

Would I personally have an abortion? No, never. I never have, and I never will (remember when I asked you if I ever got pregnant if you would adopt my child?). Do I feel that our government has any right to put their nose in my doctor's office and tell me what I can and can't do with my body? F*** no.

Why not instead of putting all this money into trying to pass legislation to ban abortion, we use that money to say... I don't know, educate people, give more affordable birth control to poor families.

(Danielle has some websites she said she wanted to refer me to, but she has to look them up)

lizS said...

hmm, interesting points on danielle's part. however, there is one fact that she's not right about, and i'm surprized you didn't mention this to her timpani. babies have a heartbeat WELL before the first trimester is over. i'd have to get my little book out and look it up, but i do know they are "only a ball of cells" for a surprizingly short period of time. have a high risk pregnancy some time, you learn all kinds of neat things. you may not be able to hear that heartbeat, but you can see it on an ultrasound, and it's only a matter of weeks before they have a heart that beats. also, only someone who has never been pregnant would desribe a baby in the first trimester as a "ball of cells", which as i said before, is only that way for a very short time. i can see danielle's point of view in that everyone deserves freedom of choice, but she's forgetting that the pregnant person made that choice when they had unprotected sex. i do like her point though in that maybe we should throw some goverment money towards education and supplying women with contreceptives who couldn't otherwise afford it. i like that alot, then it really does put the decision in the woman's hands BEFORE there is a pregnancy. and addressing her question as to whether i/we/whoever is against the morning after pill because it is just an overdose of birth control or whatever. i am actually against some forms of birth control because they are too close to abortion, like an iud device, which makes the lining of your uterus too irritating for a fertilized egg to implant, so i'm gonna say yes there, for my own personal opinion. anyway, just some observations from liz. tah!
timpani, you should have danielle weigh in herself! that would be so much fun!

Anonymous said...

I guess my 1st question in response to this would be what are the author's reasons for saying that you would "no, never" have an abortion yourself?

J

ps: I feel like I am talking to danielle through a Timpani filter. If the real danielle shows up I shall guarantee her safe and courteous passage through Sherwood forest-

Speaking of safe passage, I enjoyed MC's polygamy dig... heh heh heh

timpani76 said...

Liz,

I did not post my responses to Danielle's arguments, which were many. I did tell her that I saw BOTH my babies on ultrasounds at 8 and 10 weeks and they both wave their little arm buds at me and make me tear up.

I just read an article a few months ago that stated that babies do not start to feel pain until around 20 weeks, though. The article was saying that if a woman has an abortion after 20 weeks she should be given the option to give the baby a painkiller before they aborted it. This was about a law that was going to be passed in Colorado, I think, where the mothers were going to be required by law to be asked if they would like to give the baby said anesthesia.

So, are babies not really sentient spiritual beings before 20 weeks?

Danielle said that she might weigh in later, but she was afraid of being attacked for her position.

Anonymous said...

I just looked it up: A baby's heart beats at 5 weeks. Most people only find out they're pregnant a week before this. Not enough time to have an abortion pre-heartbeat.

As for the argument against using "anti," I suppose that's a 2-way street. What's fair for one should be fair for another.

I agree with Liz about the IUD. (Besides, they can be dangerous - with the potential to cause TSS or the uterus to grow around the IUD, eventually needing surgical removal.) I also used to take birth control pills when I was first married because I was uninformed about the fact that they can allow fertilization of an egg (I was told by my doctor, who lied to me, that they didn't.). I have since quit using them. My husband and I am quite happy with our choices of contraception, and our intimate life. We don't have to use pills to keep from having another baby if we don't want to.

I do have to say I'm sorry about the comment about someone being afraid to lose an argument...is that what John meant by getting into a "snit-fest"? Sorry.

And we could discuss all of those other issues mentioned by Danielle, because I don't necessarily think that the Republicans have all the right answers to them either, and so often, one party just mirrors the other, or they have different ideas to get us equally screwed up either way we go. What I'd really like to see is maybe term limits, so we can get fresh blood all the way around? I don't know if that's really constitutional, but I think it could help with poll rigging across the board, and dynasties would have to end. I sure hope to never see another Clinton or Bush in the White House again, even in 50 years, 100 years, or 150 years. We need govt. out of our business and our pocketbooks. If there weren't so many entitlements, the majority of us could afford to buy all our own food, save our own money, or pay for private health insurance.

And J- Oh yeah...I'm talking to a bunch of Mormons aren't I? ;)

MC

Anonymous said...

I always think of something else to say right after I hit the "publish" button. Sorry. You know, abortion is a really emotional issue, and it's a hard one not to be passionate about, and I think that's why so often it becomes a snit-fest. Because we have reasons for our beliefs on both sides. Many of them are from personal experience or from the experience of friends of ours. Here's the question I would pose to Danielle: You've been inside an abortion clinic. Your friend had to endure the humiliation of being there, and the callousness of the staff. Would you recommend this experience to any of your other friends, after what you've seen? I know she didn't have a surgical abortion, so it's a little different, but the girls are all treated the same. The biggest issue I have with the abortion industry (besides the obvious life/death issue) is that SO MANY young ladies are not fully prepared for what they are getting themselves into, because they are not fully informed, and as a result, the vast majority of them come out feeling worse than they did before they went in there, and they carry that baggage around with them for years, and many times the rest of their lives. That's a high price to pay for one poor decision. Abortion ruins relationships. Abortion ruins how many women view themselves. I have known several people who had abortions, and never forgave themselves or the person who they felt pressured them into it. I've known ladies who had abortions, then never could have a child when they wanted to. I have only known one person, and I've met several people who've had abortions, one person who was glad they did it.

MC

timpani76 said...

Ok, Danielle said she will chime in this weekend. I think you all should understand how intimidating it would be for someone who was of a certain mindset to be in a group of people who were of the opposite mindset.

You know like when Erik has to hang out with my whole (liberal) family!

lizS said...

please try to reassure danielle that we are not going to attack her! i already said i AGREED with several of her points! i'm not going to agree with everything, but she already came up with stuff i hadn't thought of, and it made me rethink a few things. that's how we learn and grow right? i don't think anyone's going to get mad, or jump down her throat. we might try to change her point of view, but that's because we're right. :) not that she's not going to try to change ours, right? cause that's not part of the deal. she can't try to sway us to the dark side. otherwise she's OUT!! just kidding obviously!

lizS said...

plus, if we only talk to people who agree with us, how boring is that?

Danielle said...

Hey guys,

I just wanted to chime in real quickly. It's hard to go into everything because frankly, between work and certain social situations, I am very stressed out and stretched between different things. It boils down to a lack of time. Things are quiet at work, so I wanted to jump in during one of my few free moments (I'll find informational links when I can).

Someone asked why I would never have an abortion. When it really boils down it it, I believe that it's morally wrong. I know that sounds shocking coming from someone who is so heavily invested in women's rights and the pro-choice movement, but it's how I feel. I couldn't have an abortion because I don't believe I would be able to handle the emotional and spiritual repercussions. I believe there is something out there greater than ourselves, I believe in the soul, and I pray nightly.

I will say this, I don't believe there is anything wrong with the birth control pill, and if I was raped right now, I guarantee you I would be requesting the morning after pill while getting my rape kit done. That falls with in your time line of the baby's heartbeat because you have to take the morning after pill with in 72 hours (or something like that) of intercourse. The grouping of cells argument regarding the first trimester is something I will have to consider in the future when talking about these things.

I tend to separate my moral beliefs from my political beliefs. I don't believe it is my place or anyone else's place to judge someone for their decisions for their own body, nor I do I feel it is wrong for someone to make that choice for them self. What is wrong for me is not necessarily wrong for someone else. I consider myself to be agnostic because while I believe in God (or some sort of higher power), I don't believe it is my place to say that someone else should or shouldn't have that same belief. I believe that everyone in this world has their own spiritual path that they may or may not pursue. In my mind, I very much believe in the scripture that says that judge, less ye be judged (yeah, I'm hacking it up, but this is being typed rather quickly) and I believe there is something in there about ye who have not sinned, cast the first stone... that's what I think about when I see these protests outside abortion clinics yelling at women as they enter... women who might not feel that have any other choice. I see these terrible signs with pictures of aborted fetuses, and I know that children can see these signs. I wouldn't want a child to see a gory movie, and I likewise wouldn't want a child to see those signs. They are hateful and disgraceful to good people and Christians everywhere.

Have you ever been raped? Do you believe that women who have been raped should be forced to have the child, and/or should not have even the morning after pill as a choice? Do you believe girls who have been raped by a male family member should be forced to carry that child? Do you believe that if the life of the mother is at risk that she should be forced to carry that child? Do you believe that if both the mother and the child would die that the mother should be forced to carry the child?

The reason I ask those questions is because I have yet to see any legislation passed that takes things like rape, incest, and the health of the mother into account. If you know of something otherwise (that's been passed), please let me know because I find it very disheartening.

The abortion issue has unfortunately become an all or nothing line in the sand that political parties use to throw against one another - this is both the fault of the left and the right wing. I find it disgusting.

I wish that there were less abortions. I wish women who had abortions had to notify the potential father first so that he has a say. I wish there could be a way to limit the amount of abortions some women have. I wish that there was more education for lower class families that don't realize that they do have access to cheaper birth control (It's not just single women contributing to that abortion rate). I wish that there were more government programs in place to educate people on safe sex - especially kids. Most kids think that the pulling out method will prevent them from getting pregnant. I wish a lot of things and I write my senators and representatives frequently regarding this and several other issues (I'm on several mailing lists). Unfortunately, I don't always get what I wish would happen, so I only have to work with the world the way it is. I do what I can, and I keep moving forward.

So in this all or nothing type of mentality towards the abortion argument, I have to vote on the side of choice. Not because I would personally have an abortion, but because I believe in protecting the rights of both the extreme cases and womens right to privacy in the doctors office.

I've seen quite a bit of talk around less government - while most of you would agree that the government has too much say over our pocketbooks, my concern is that our government is overstepping their bounds by walking into my doctor's office.

I'll try to touch more on any questions I have missed later. I was hesitant to post because not only have I been roped into several arguments regarding this, and it is such an emotional issue. If this truly is a means of open debate with out repercussions such as being called a "baby killer", then I would definitely love to participate.

I have more to say, but work is now over, and I still have a few e-mails to answer to my employees before leaving.

Thanks gang!

... Danielle

Anonymous said...

Haven't read it all yet Danielle but I will- just wanted to say quickly thanks for having the nerve to have a say here- I appreciate that it takes something to express a contrary opinion at this point- thanks-

ever seen the scence in the Patriot where Mel Gibson steps into a radically anti-English pub in pre-rev war America and shouts: "God Save King George!"?

J

Anonymous said...

Danielle,

I can only speak for myself, but I don't believe that anyone here thinks that if a mother or a mother and her child both will die, that she shouldn't be allowed to have the option of an abortion if necessary. I'm sure you haven't had the time to read everything we've said, and I've probably said the most inflammatory stuff here, but the truth is, that we aren't here to bash anyone personally. I can take issue with your position on an issue, and still respect you as a person. The thing is, they are teaching sex-ed in school. All a child has to do is walk into a school nurse's office and ask for contraception, and they are either provided it, or told where they can get it. There's a new problem raising it's ugly head, where kids believe that oral sex is not sex, and young ladies are coming down with throat cancer because they are getting horrific diseases from those activities. I guess it DOES come down to a need for more education, but I take issue with the idea that kids'll be kids, and they're going to do it anyway. I think that if kids understood the gravity of their actions, they wouldn't be so eager to start these behaviors so young. It seems to be expected of them, and kids will do what's expected of them.

As for the scene outside abortion clinics, I addressed this earlier, NO ONE likes the buttheads that scream and yell at the ladies going into the clinics. They make us look bad. The signs, though, may be the only time a woman actually sees what is really happening inside the clinics. So many girls have no clue what they're doing, because no one has told them, and if they are kept from the people who can offer the other side of the issue to these ladies, how are they to make an informed decision? I have a friend who is a nurse, and she is often outside of the local clinic. She never screams at the ladies going in and coming out. Her whole goal is to try to give these frightened girls more options. She has her own ultrasound machine, and she can show them their babies. Once a girl can see her baby, and sees that they are not just carrying a blob of tissue, they usually change their mind. Girls are not getting compassionate care at these clinics, you've seen that yourself, what they need very often is someone to come along side them to let them know, they are not alone. This friend of mine gives every girl she helps a shoulder to cry on, help with their health care, help feeding and clothing their babies after they are born, and if they need it, help finding a home for their child once it is born. People outside of abortion clinics are generally compassionate, loving people, who want to help,if only given a chance, and are given a bad rap by scum bags who have no business being out there. Saying that everyone outside an abortion clinic is spewing hatred, is like saying all Baptists stand outside military funerals holding up "God Hates Fags" signs.

Mary (MC)

Anonymous said...

I forgot to address the idea that it's a woman making a choice for her own body. This absolutely baffles me. It is not the woman's body in this situation that ends up:
1) Torn limb from limb
2) Burned (through a saline solution)
or
3) Delivered breech, then scissors inserted into the back of their skull, brains sucked out, and skull crushed.

However it IS the woman's body that many times ends up mutilated, scarred, or sometimes even dead itself.

Would I have the right to walk up to someone on the street and tear their limbs off? No. Why are we allowed to do it to these little people? Is it because they can't speak for themselves? Animals can't speak for themselves, should we be allowed to burn them? No, that's disgusting. Why are we allowed to do it to baby humans?

MC

Anonymous said...

Gravy I do enjoy this!

Civil but without worrying about PC. (I do loathe political correctness).

The "Momens" (rich southern accent)official doctrine (dangerous ground now- official to the best of my knowledge, that is- and my knowledge is -well- not OFFICIAL- but I do know basic what I am talking about)that abortion is morally wrong in all cases except rape and incest where it is strictly between the mother and God, and in the case where the mother life is threatened.

If we could eliminate all other abortions besides those 3 cases, well we could all join hands and ... I dunno have a huge orgy or something- a party anyway. But the simple truth is that the 1.3 million a year (a cool 9-11 weekly) is not mainly rape/incest/dieing mother cases. Maybe a couple percentage points are but the rest are ... fatalities. back to my original post, arguing that these rare cases justify the rest is the moral equivalent of the pro-slavery argument that some of these slaves - the mentally handicapped, the elderly, and the cripples- would not be able to take care of themselves in the world- I provide for them- and if I require work in return I am with in my rights. (This argument was taken perfectly seriously back in the day)

I dont like big government- the less rules the better- the only thing I want the government for is to protect and enforce a few basic rights- No stealing, No cheating, etc etc and No murder.

J

Anonymous said...

At what point, if not at conception, does a human deserve human rights? If you draw that line at 90 days, what about the last second of the last minute of 23rd hour on the 89th day?

It seems to me to be a thin line to draw between abortion and infanticide.

j

Anonymous said...

I am torn on the rape issue. I understand how awful it would have to be to carry the child of such a violent and horrible act, on the other hand, if all you had to do was say,"I was raped, I need an abortion," then we'd have a problem with people reporting rapes that never occurred. (Artificially inflating the crime rate.) That also means that young men who did not rape their accuser could be prosecuted for a crime they never committed (Duke U. anyone?), or at least be under suspicion of the people around them. How is that fair to them?

MC

timpani76 said...

Something most people don't realize

1873-US criminalizes birth control (Comstock Law)

1930 Catholic church declares birth control a sin. (I would have thought this was an older idea by the Catholic church, I did not realize it was so recent)

1951 anti-birth control laws fought, and won by most clinics (biggest clinic Planned Parenthood with over 200 clinics in USA). Women gain greater control of their reproductive rights.

1959 First forms of "The Pill" invented by Margaret Sanger (using early research from her dead husband as well as getting new funding)

1960's several forms of "The Pill" now available.

1973 Roe vs Wade Abortion is legalized.

Why didn't we keep going with better forms of birth control? Maragaret Sanger seemed to have a great idea, lots of availability for married or single women. Why did progress stop in one area and take such a destructive turn?

The pill used to be considered "obscene material" along with other forms of birth control but now I can't name anyone who has not tried it. It seems to have come a long way, and yet women still do not use it enough to prevent 1.3 million abortions a year.

Also, do all people consider the "morning after" pill an abortion? Mark Crane is rabidly pro-life and he says he's fine with it. I thought it was the same as an abortion, but I am having my doubts.

Thanks for posting Danielle!

Anonymous said...

I don't know if anyone else caught this, but I was just thinking about it. A week or 2 ago I was listening to the news and they had a quick blurb about a woman on meth who gave birth to a still-born baby. She's now being charged with manslaughter for the death of her not-yet-born baby. I'm curious to know what people who want abortion to stay legal think about this? How is it any different from an abortion? The child still had not breathed their first breath, and who knows if the mother even really wanted the child? From what I understand, people heavily involved in drugs really don't care about much else...

Timpani- I really like how you put it: "Why didn't we keep going with better forms of birth control?...Why did progress stop in one area and take such a destructive turn?" Those are very thoughtful questions. I don't know if they were rhetorical, but my guess would be that they no longer had the sense of urgency to come up with better options once abortion became "safe and legal."

MC

Mary said...

Whether or not you consider the Morning After Pill abortive, depends on your definition of when life begins. If you think it begins at the moment of fertilization, then it's abortive. If you think life begins at implantation or later, then it probably isn't.

Anonymous said...

I was the one who asked about why you personally would "never" have an abortion, Danielle.

Your response was that you considered it morally wrong, for you.

My second question then is- why?What, for you, makes it morally wrong?

J

lizS said...

wow! this is enormously cool. welcome danielle!! thanks for putting forth your thoughts, it makes us all a little smarter. i'm going to put forth an opinion on the rape issue. so far no one has commented that has actually been raped, so i'll give an "insider" point of view. this is one i've thought long and hard about. what if i had become pregnant during one of several rapes? for myself, i don't think i would have been able to handle it. i was young, very young as in pre-teens, and my life would have been in danger to carry a child, so i guess i was double whammied. i had two possibly exceptable reasons for abortion. but my life aside, i was not mentally or emotionally prepared for something like this. there is no way i could have come out of that situation sane. i was barely holding on to my sanity to begin with, that would have just blown it out of the water. now, i am not saying that all women who are raped and carry their babies are risking insanity. i have great and deep respect and admiration for those women who can do it. i am saying that the abortion option, and i think maybe the morning after pill is a great solution, definitly needs to be in place for those victimized women who can't handle it, or are young enough that their lives are in danger. i know that that is a very hard point of view to understand. there is at least one who has commented that there is no reason for abortion, including rape, but i'm gonna go out on a limb here, and say, with experience behind me, that rape and incest and danger to mother and child are three situations where i think it would be forgiven. do i think every woman should? i don't know. that is between her and God. now that does raise the question of how is anyone to be sure the woman was raped? or victim of incest? i dunno. that's a question that has been asked of me lots and lots. prove it. prove that what you say happened did in fact happen. and i can't. if i had gone to a doctor right afterwards, it could have been proven, but i was a little girl, and so did what i was told and cleaned up and told no one, until i was much much older. and that will happen to alot of victims. they wash away the evidence in the shower trying to feel clean when inside they feel so dirty. so, i don't have a solution to that one. i do know that innocent victims of the "rape!" accusation won't get prosecuted if the woman doesn't press charges, or give a name. you can't force someone to prosecute. anyway, that's all for now!

timpani76 said...

Mary,

My questions were mainly wanting a weigh in because I was pretty baffled about why the pill SEEMED to lead to abortion being legalized. It did seem that there was an awfully short space of time between the two.

I think that the pill led to sexual freedom for many women, and that abortion led only to irresponsibility. It makes me wonder why they were so closely related (by looking at a time line)

Wasn't the 80's a time of many people having unprotected sex? And then the AIDS wake up call came?

Another thing that worries me about abortion is teenage girls not only exposing themselves to pregnancy (which they are not capable of dealing with) but they are also exposing themselves to life-threatening and sterilizing diseases (not just throat cancer but AIDS, chlamydia, gonorrhea, and many other things that can cause a woman to become sterile or even die if untreated).

I agree that education is very important when dealing with this issue.

Danielle said...

Jumpin in real quickly on lunch.

I was the one who asked about why you personally would "never" have an abortion, Danielle.

Your response was that you considered it morally wrong, for you.

My second question then is- why?What, for you, makes it morally wrong?

J


Morally wrong might have been the wrong way to put that. I think my main concern would be the emotional impact. I honestly don't know if I would be able to handle that. When it boils down to it, we don't know at what point the child has a soul, or when what's growing in your body is more than a grouping of cells. When it boils down to it, I know I would take the morning after pill (depending on the circumstance), but I don't know if I could really bring myself to going much further than that. Again, it's a personal choice... I hope that I'm never put in the position where I feel that I have to consider abortion as an option, but at the same time, I can't ethically take that right away from anyone else (well, what I consider ethical).

Oh, and just so you guys know, partial birth abortions are almost unheard of in the US at this stage. I can't remember if most states made those illegal except where the life of the mother is threatened, or if it's just something that most doctors refuse to do. I'll have to get back to you on that one. I think the imagery from the partial birth abortion is what a lot of people on the pro-life side of things tend to use as a deterrent, but since it's so rare, I don't think that's a good example to use - just a personal opinion.

Danielle said...

Why do women do this? When we have so many different forms of birth control, so many choices in the case of accidental pregnancy, and so many choices with education, careers, and our lives, do we have to resort to this ugly act of violence to the most helpless of all creatures?

Timpani, I still don't understand how you can be pro-life and pro death penalty. Would you be able to pull the switch in good conscience? That's still something that sits in teh back of my mind during this argument.

Also, you believe that all drugs should be legalized based on the logic that you don't care if some crackhead wants to be a crackhead as long as they stay away from you. If someone has the choice of the drugs they can or can't do which could easily kill them (especially in the case of heroine addicts) then why wouldn't someone's ability to take the moral responsibility of what they choose to do with their body fall into that umbrella? Anyway, it was just a thought.

When I looked up the meaning of my name "Danielle", it said that my name means that "God is my only judge"... isnt' God everyone's only true judge? I guess my main point is that if God gave us the right to choose, is it really our place to place judgment and decide what someone should or shouldn't do with their own body, even if it effects the potential life of their child? Doesn't forcing someone to be good sorta sound like the other side of things? The road to hell is paved with good intentions... which may end up being the category I fall into, who knows?

Theres so many interesting questions and ideas on here that I would love to reply more to. I really appreciate that you guys are looking at this with such an open mind, despite some wording that I personally wouldn't use. :)

lizS said...

man, good discussion everyone! good points danielle. i'm a fence sitter on the death penalty myself, because as an angry abused woman i can see killing as punishment for some crimes, but that judgement of life and death is supposed to be God's only. as mortals, we're supposed to forgive because we can't know or understand all the issues involved like God can. and he did give us the freedom to choose, and for a long time i was a fence sitter for abortion too because i believed it was the woman's choice, but don't you think she has made the choice before she gets pregnant? now, i'm setting aside rape, incest and possible fatal danger here. maybe we could do better on sex education, maybe we could do better on making contreceptives available to poorer families, that is a very very good point. maybe we could educate a pregnant woman better as to what her options are at the clinics so she can make an educated and informed decision. maybe if we had people who cared in those clinics that would help. i think there is alot of work to do in this area, and i don't think that it's possibly a black/white issue. i do think there is alot of gray, and maybe instead of lumping all accidental pregnancies together, they should be viewed more as individual cases. every person is unique after all, as is their situation in life, and possibly their particualar accidental pregnancy. we should not lose sight, however, that we are talking about a child here, not a ball of cells. the same reason for my feelings on the death penalty hold here. the choice for life or death falls to God. he knows best, better than anyone, he knows us individually, and he has all the information on each case he needs to make the perfect decision. a thought occured to me this morning as i woke up(yes, this blog has me DREAMING this stuff!) that if everyone just had more faith, we wouldn't need contreceptives at all, we could just trust that our Father in Heaven would send us the babies when it was the perfect time for them, and not before. however, since we are mortal and imperfect, i think i'll just cover all my bases, and keep using the protection. ;)

Danielle said...

Rene wrote: But I repeat, the vast, vast, vast majority of the people out there getting abortions made their choice the day they decided to have unresponsible sex.

What about the people that used a condom or the spounge or whatever else and that method failed them (condom breaks, spounge isn't full proof, etc)? What if they made the right choice to use protection, but that protection failed them? What about young girls who's parents don't explain to the the implications of these acts? What about misinformed people that think that methods like "pulling out" are effective? (I'm sorry if that's a crude term, but I don't know any other way of phrasing it. I'm trying really hard to watch my language for you guys)

You don't seem to have much sympathy for rape victims... what do you think the emotional impact could be if a woman carried a child (a constant reminder) that was the result of being raped? What about the emotional impacts on the child if that mother raised that child? What if the mother simply felt that she couldn't handle the impacts of carrying the child to full term.

Don't get me wrong, I think adoption should always be considered first and foremost, but I don't expect everyone to see things like I see them. Just like I can't expect to see things from someone else's point of view. Hell, I can't say that the opinions I have now will always be my opinions... I know they haven't always been my opinions.

I still stand by my point that we need more education in this country. I went through sex ed in high school - they didn't even talk about how to use a condom. My mother never had the sex talk with me, so when I did loose my virginity, I was completely not prepared for it - not only because I wasn't emotionally prepared for it, but because I was not expecting the person who I felt that I loved at the time to just go for it... I don't believe that I was raped because I didn't say "no", but I certainly wasn't prepared for it to happen, and had my mom sat me down and talked to me about sex and everything that can lead to sex prior to that happening, I think I might have been better able to prevent it.

There was no condom, and there was no time to react... had I gotten pregnant from that experience, I don't know if I would have felt I had many options. I didn't choose not to use the condom because I didn't have the choice if I wanted to have sex. I'd like to think that in that situation, had I gotten pregnant, I would not have had an abortion, but considering my state of mind at the time, I can't honestly say that for sure. I was very suicidal during that time. If you call me a baby killer for questioning that, that's your choice, but I know exactly what it's like to be a scared young woman and not know what your options are.

Also, someone said something about how you can go into your nurses station in high school and request free condoms. I don't know if you remember what it was like to be in high school, but that's just not something kids would feel comfortable doing - adults are the enemy, remember? How scary would it be to worry that your parents might find out.

Also, how are girls getting throat cancer from oral sex? I saw that somewhere (sorry, so much text) and I'm throughly confused by that one. Do you have any sources to cite for that? Don't get me wrong, I don't think high school kids should be having oral sex or sex period, but regardless of what I think, kids are still going to do it. It's not just a matter of kids will be kids, it's a matter of kids are going to do what they want to do without proper guidance regardless.

Danielle said...

Great stuff Liz. I love the idea of taking things on an individual basis. I think that should be how the justice system is ran period.

I also think that there should be more education at the actual abortion clinic. I think sometimes people go in there unsure if they actually want to have an abortion or not, but they feel some sort of pressure - either personally or socially. I would love it if there could be counselors who would talk to the women (particularly young girls) about the emotional impact... letting them know that it's not too late for them to change their minds and the other options like adoption.

Another thing occurred to me about the time I've been inside an abortion clinic - there were several girls there with their apparent significant others (boyfriends and what seemed to be husbands)... I wonder how many women feel pressure from the other person?

Danielle said...

Oh, and PS, I find the term "pro-abortion" to be really offensive. I'm not pro-abortion because it's not like I want women to have abortions and I think you'll find that most people who are pro-choice are along that same belief.

Danielle said...

MC Wrote: Here's the question I would pose to Danielle: You've been inside an abortion clinic. Your friend had to endure the humiliation of being there, and the callousness of the staff. Would you recommend this experience to any of your other friends, after what you've seen?

I just ran across this (still going back and re-reading instead of skimming). I wouldn't "recommend" an abortion to anyone... what I would do is support my friend in whatever decisions she felt she needed to make and let her know that I love her unconditionally regardless of her choice. My hope would be that she would choose to give up the baby for adoption (this is considering if the woman was pat the morning after pill stage), but that would still ultimately be the woman's choice to make; not mine to make for her. I would also make sure that she was informed on all the potential implications, and I would make sure to put my two cents in about informing the father.

I know so few women who have had an abortion or used the morning after pill, so I don't know if that situation would ever come up.

Also, abortion clinics do offer discounted contraceptives and birth control. I think the Hope Clinic in Granite City, IL offers it depending on how much you make - you just have to bring in a paycheck (this is what my friend Kate used to do). So not everyone going there is going there to get an abortion... but could you imagine how uncomfortable it would be to go to the one place you know you can get cheap contraceptives and having protesters giving you judgmental looks when all you want to do is prevent the pregnancy? I was uncomfortable and I wasn't even there for me!

I do like the idea of women having to have an ultrasound before making the choice. Perhaps if more women realized that there is a child living inside of them, that might make them reconsider their choice.

I'm not debating the number of abortions - there should be less abortions, and there should be more information out there and programs that would prevent this from happening as much.

My real debate here begins and ends with if abortion should or shouldn't be legal. Considering the all or nothing attitude of the current 2 party political system, I believe that abortion should remain legal. I also believe that the system is flawed, and needs a serious reconstruction, but that's a talk for a different day. :)

lizS said...

maybe we should not have "abortion" clinics at all, but rather...what? pregnancy clinics? sex clinics? pregnancy education clinics? somewhere that a woman with an accidental pregnancy can go and get ALL of her choices laid out, with ALL of the information on those choices, including ultrasounds and adoption agency info. maybe that is the solution.

Anonymous said...

Hi Mary, just caught your comments (I think I addressed most of them; just not directly).

I think that if kids understood the gravity of their actions, they wouldn't be so eager to start these behaviors so young. It seems to be expected of them, and kids will do what's expected of them.

I completely agree with this portion of your statement. That is exactly why I put such an emphasis on eduction.

Saying that everyone outside an abortion clinic is spewing hatred, is like saying all Baptists stand outside military funerals holding up "God Hates Fags" signs.

I didn't say that everyone outside of an abortion clinic is spewing hatred... they're just the ones that stick out in my memory. That's the impact it gave me - hateful, hurtful, ignorance, which doesn't deter anyone.

I already addressed the earlier portion of your point there.

and we all know that not all Baptists are even remotely like those horrible Westboro folks. I don't even consider them to be real Christians.

Alright, sorry for all the comments, but I just didn't know when I would get a chance to post again. Thanks again gang!

Anonymous said...

whoa- did some one just dis the death penalty? Could I pull the trigger in good conscience? ummm YEAH... sometimes its more of a matter of resisting the urge to pull the trigger.

I know its off topic, but its a hot button (PUNNY!) for me.

j

timpani76 said...

Danielle,

Abortion kills an innocent life. Death penalty kills a killer (who could kill again, in prison or out).

Danielle said...

Timpani worte: Abortion kills an innocent life. Death penalty kills a killer (who could kill again, in prison or out).

Yes, but based on your argument about killing being a sin, isn't the death penalty still taking judgment into our own hands and killing someone? Also, you never answered my question - would you be able to pull the switch, or would you want someone you loved like Erik pulling the switch? Wouldn't you worry about the spiritual consequences?

I guess I've just never seen the sense in the eye for an eye mentality. Like mom always said, "two wrongs don't make a right". While I do believe there is a special place for the criminally insane, I don't know if it's truly our obligation to kill these people. I'm not saying you're wrong for your belief - I'm just saying that I believe something different.

Wouldn't the world be a great place if we could all just accept that what is wrong or right for one person may not be wrong or right for someone else?

Crap, I guess I just opened up the death penalty can of worms. Sorry John!

timpani76 said...

Danielle,

If someone killed someone I love, I would have no problems flipping the switch myself. I wouldn't want Erik to do it, though, he's too good hearted.

There are several examples in our religious books where God tells people to kill someone else. There are cases where people need to be put down like the wild animals they have become.

Although we have made it illegal to impose the death penalty for rape and other crimes, I still believe murder should be punishable by death. I kind of sit the fence on child rape (this has come up recently in Florida? I think) since there might be some redemption on this earth for that person (though I doubt it).

Anonymous said...

The death penalty is not about punishment. so "penalty" is a misnomer. Execution is sometimes the best way to protect the innocent. It has nothing to do with an eye for an eye- its just a form of self defense.

It seems far more inconsistant to me to allow that it might be ok to kill and unborn child but not ok to kill a rapist (to pick a crime) than to say that the rapist should be protected and the unborn child should not.

J

PS: I love the death penalty.

Danielle said...

There are several examples in our religious books where God tells people to kill someone else. There are cases where people need to be put down like the wild animals they have become.

Right, but I don't exactly see a whole lot of people having revelations from God these days about support of the death penalty. :)

What is the church's stance on it?

Danielle said...

The death penalty is not about punishment. so "penalty" is a misnomer. Execution is sometimes the best way to protect the innocent. It has nothing to do with an eye for an eye- its just a form of self defense.

It seems far more inconsistant to me to allow that it might be ok to kill and unborn child but not ok to kill a rapist (to pick a crime) than to say that the rapist should be protected and the unborn child should not.

J

PS: I love the death penalty.


Do you feel that the criminally insane are fully aware of their actions? I can't say that I do. What really bugs me about the death penalty is those cases where they found that the accused was innocent years after the fact. I guess I can't imagine killing someone w/out a shadow of a doubt and I have a hard time thinking that every person who has gone to the chair or whatever was killed with out a shadow of a doubt. Given our current political system, I just think it's a slippery slope.

The mentality behind abortion is that I wouldn't personally be able to do it, just like I wouldn't personally be able to flip the switch to kill someone for a crime I was unsure they did or did not commit. Also, if you read me correctly, you'll see that I don't believe abortion is right, but it's comes down to personal liberties and personal choice (in my honest opinion).

Tell me something that would change my mind because I'll be completely honest with you - I have not fully studied up on the death penalty, and I'm totally open to learn more... Hehe, you know, besides that you love the death penalty.

Anonymous said...

you dont need a revelation from God for it to be ok to kill someone.

J

Anonymous said...

Woah- lots of things to address here: I was going to leave her anonymous here, but the young rape victim, who was reamed by the nurse for NOT having an abortion was my mom. I have a lot of sympathy for rape victims. It makes my stomach turn to imagine what they must be going through. There are other options for them, however. Babies only develop for 9 months, and then they can be given up for adoption. There is no way I expect a woman who has been raped to live daily for the rest of her life looking at the evidence of such a horrible experience in her life. I also said I didn't quite know where to come down on the rape issue. I can see both sides of the argument, and if carrying the baby is something that will send someone over the edge to insanity, well, I don't know what to say to that. It would be great if they could take things on an individual basis, but who would make the determinations? That's one we'd have to really think out to make it workable (I'm not saying it's not workable, I'm saying it'll take a lot of thought.)

Death penalty- the scum bags who get themselves put on death row are NOT in any way, shape or form innocent. If you get yourself put on death row, you are one messed up, diseased individual. On the other hand, a child who has never been born and therefore has done not one thing to anyone (except *gasp* exist), doesn't deserve what they get at an abortion clinic. Even the most hardened death row inmate- the one who raped, mutilated, and held for months his victims before killing them, dismembering their bodies and burying them under his house, is gently put to sleep using lethal injection. - Which is being put on hold in several states because it may be "too cruel" for these poor misunderstood lambs. Now I do concede that some states still have the electric chair, and maybe Utah still uses a firing squad on occasion? But usually, it's lethal injection. Besides, getting rid of murderers will also help with prison overcrowding, and as a bonus, might deter anyone sick enough to commit a heinous crime, but cowardly enough to want to live.

Girls are getting throat cancer because they are getting VD in their mouths and throats from swallowing infected *ahem* emissions (same way they get cervical cancer - I believe it's from HPV). But I have to say one of the things that kept me from getting too physical in high school was the fear of disease. I don't believe that kids don't know you can get really nasty diseases from having sex. As far back as I can remember in school we talked about communicable diseases. I was fortunate enough to have parents who talked to me about these things, and that I felt comfortable enough to ask anything I needed to know. I know that not everyone has that kind of relationship with their parents, and it's sad, because if parents really cared about their kids, they would do everything in their power to warn them and keep them healthy.

I agree that there should be more education at abortion clinics, but I don't see that happening, because the sole purpose of their existence, and the only way they make money, is if babies die. They are too powerful in the political system for a legal measure like that to pass through our severely corrupt government. On the other hand, I've never seen anyone trying to put themselves out of business like the cigarette companies, because by law they have to put warnings on their packages and take out ads against themselves, so I guess it IS possible- you can't say cigarette companies aren't powerful. As an aside, don't you think it's strange that at the same time they're trying to make cigarettes illegal, many people are trying to make marijuana legal? (I'm not saying that's you, Danielle, I don't know where you come down on the cigarette issue.)

Danielle, that's a fair answer to my question about going with a friend to an abortion clinic. I think that a good friend would at least make sure her friend knew all of her options and their potential implications before making such an important and life-changing decision. And I know the Westboro Baptist folks were an over the top comparison, it was just the first thing that came to mind. It did seem you were saying all people standing out there were awful. Like I said before, we don't like those guys screaming at the girls, either.

It seems to me that everyone here agrees that the best solution to this debate would be:
1) Better education.
2) More easily available (less expensive)contraception.
3) Abortions should be available to women who will die if they don't get one, and in some cases, rape.

I think we disagree on the execution of these points.

I'm trying really hard to be respectful of feelings here, but I find the term "pro-choice" really offensive, and I'm trying hard not to use any "anti" terms here, so what am I supposed to do? I actually sat on the "pro-abortion" term and stared at it for a long time trying to think of a better word that I could use, and it was the best I could come up with.

MC

Anonymous said...

Ugh...

Kids I have to tell you that trying to follow the ... like VOLCANO of chat... (like volcano on IO- like liquid Hydrogen or whatever IO is volcanic with) ...I have the worlds greatest headache.

Thanks for commenting all, but I, for reasons of my own sanity, am taking a good long break from trying to monitor my own fanclub for a while. (ok a day or two most likely.)

Unfortunately I am no closer now than I was when I began this thread to understanding how anyone can condone abortion without condoning infanticide. By condone I dont mean in one own's personal life- I mean in the legal arena.

I may never introduce a serious topic again.

J

Anonymous said...

John- you went awful quickly from "this is fun" to "ugh, I'll never do this again." ;) I know this topic has gone on for a long time now, but it's a shame you're tired of it now, 'cuz we finally got an intelligent person of the opposite persuasion to weigh in. Oh well, don't be a stranger, Danielle.

MC

Danielle said...

Thanks Mary! I really enjoyed the conversations and would love to share more, but I guess I overkilled. Sorry if I overloaded the subject John! Thanks guys!

Hobble said...

Geez! I'm late to the party again. Many good points were made in this discussion. So many, in fact that I actually skipped part of them and skimmed others because I just had serious lack of time. First I would just like to make a few comments on the history of abortion and birth control in general. Many people have said that it has only been legal for the last 35 or so years. Perhaps that is true, but it has been a desperate practice among women for much much longer. Remember for hundreds of years if you became pregnant out of wedlock, regardless of how it happened, you lost basically everything. Your family disowned you. No one would hire your for work. All avenues were effectively closed. Unfortunately, this often left young mothers and their poor little ones in dire straights to say the least. During those times it was no wonder that women might have considered abortion. They had definite reasons to fear. But now that we have a system to aid single moms and ways to prevent pregnancy and very few people who would actually disown you, you would think the fear would have gone. It hasn't. The fear originates from exactly the same place - worry about the future. Unfortunately, our society has been encouraging selfish behavior for so long that they think that it is ok to value your own life and your own freedom above anyone else's. They have forgotten that when you enrich someone else's life you enrich your own. It really disturbs me that so many people have so little regard for life at all. This includes not just the issue of abortion but animal rights, children's rights, and environmental issues. Scary.
The point is that all injustices begin with one mindset that the American public is very good at sustaining - MINE, MINE, MINE or ME, ME, ME. Slavery was sustained because of it. Abortion is also fueled by it.
Personally, I think both practices are deplorable and disgusting, and don't advocate either one. I don't hate those who have done it, but I don't know a one who doesn't regret it every day of their lives.
It constantly amazes me how willing teens who are unprepared to handle the rigors of pregnancy psycologically or otherwise will enter into situations which can only result in it eventually. I was on a chat once that had a similar discussion on the subject, but had many younger people. The comment I had made then and I stand by it now is that having intercourse is like skydiving. Those who skydive accept two truths 1. There is a chance the chute won't open and 2. The ground is mercilessly hard. Maybe if more people were taught respect and responsibility we wouldn't have so many problems. Ok, enough rant.

AS

timpani76 said...

AS-who are you? Sorry, I can't figure it out.

I will have to remember that skydiving analogy for when I have some of those talks with my kids. Or when I actually go skydiving.

timpani76 said...

AS- is Alisha, duh! She just told me.