Author Topic: This is illogical to me...  (Read 5099 times)

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Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #70 on: August 05, 2013, 09:51:21 PM »
Well, I hope now you have a better idea at what is meant by "personhood" and that it's a very heated debate as to what makes a person (and why it is the crux of the abortion question).
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Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #71 on: August 06, 2013, 09:32:46 AM »
If a fetus is considered to be a person from conception, where are all the funerals for stillbirths?  I don't ever see them or hear of them.  Never seen one announced in any newspaper or any church bulletin.  Ever.

I mean, I'm sure that some people probably have them, in small private ceremonies.  But if the belief that a fetus is a person is what lies behind the conservative viewpoint that abortion should be illegal, we should see plenty of such funerals, because stillbirths happen all the time.
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Offline sueño

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #72 on: August 06, 2013, 09:44:19 AM »
I've known a few women who had stillbirths and they had funerals for their babies.

No funerals for miscarriages; there's not much to bury.  But the death of their future babies can hit women pretty hard, as well.  I have friends who've lost more than one child that way and they grieve like they lost a two-year old.  :(

I don't think whether someone has a funeral is a really good factor on which to base "personhood".    :|
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Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #73 on: August 06, 2013, 10:57:34 AM »
I don't think whether someone has a funeral is a really good factor on which to base "personhood".    :|
That, lots of people die without getting a funeral but they're still persons.
"All great works are prepared in the desert, including the redemption of the world. The precursors, the followers, the Master Himself, all obeyed or have to obey one and the same law. Prophets, apostles, preachers, martyrs, pioneers of knowledge, inspired artists in every art, ordinary men and the Man-God, all pay tribute to loneliness, to the life of silence, to the night." - A. G. Sertillanges

Offline soundgarden

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #74 on: August 06, 2013, 12:16:13 PM »
Can you give me a better definition of "person" than something that is conscious?
That's obviously controversial and is really the issue behind deciding whether or not a fetus is a person. If a fetus meets the requirements of what it takes to be a person, well, there you go, abortion is murder. It's easy to recognize some sufficient conditions which satisfy personhood (i.e. consciousness) but it's difficult to identify all the necessary conditions for personhood.

But the religious person will typically say that a fetus possesses an immaterial soul/mind which transcends the physical stuff the fetus is made of, and that this soul/mind is a sufficient condition for personhood. That's the route I would take anyway.

Why at conception? 

Claiming conception as the point of "en-souling" fall under the same reasoning as why pagans may claim that the god of the oceans must be ocean-like.  Humans easily draw connections from what they naturally perceive; in this case from (scientific) studies and media showing how the process physically happens.

Assuming the Christian perspective, it would seem far more logical to me that the "en-souling" happens when the last pairs of chromosomes link up.  Before that, even at hte moment the sperm penetrates the egg, its not a human at all, no matter what argument.


Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #75 on: August 06, 2013, 12:33:16 PM »
I don't think whether someone has a funeral is a really good factor on which to base "personhood".    :|
That, lots of people die without getting a funeral but they're still persons.
I understand that, but it seems weird to me that there is basically a void on this subject from the people who espouse this POV.
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Offline sueño

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #76 on: August 06, 2013, 12:35:18 PM »
Why?
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Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #77 on: August 06, 2013, 02:24:47 PM »
It represents an inconsistency on their part. Hef is saying that if they recognize abortion as killing a person, they should also recognize a miscarriage/stillbirth as the death of a person. (I agree.)
"All great works are prepared in the desert, including the redemption of the world. The precursors, the followers, the Master Himself, all obeyed or have to obey one and the same law. Prophets, apostles, preachers, martyrs, pioneers of knowledge, inspired artists in every art, ordinary men and the Man-God, all pay tribute to loneliness, to the life of silence, to the night." - A. G. Sertillanges

Offline sueño

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #78 on: August 06, 2013, 02:45:45 PM »
It represents an inconsistency on their part. Hef is saying that if they recognize abortion as killing a person, they should also recognize a miscarriage/stillbirth as the death of a person. (I agree.)

On whose part?

Many do recognize it.  If you're talking about a law defining that, I'm not sure what to say.  Can you tell a family who delivered a stillborn child that it wasn't a person?

Again -- miscarriages are usually described as such during the first trimester, I believe.  Definitely harder to quantify but no less a tragedy for the family.  A stillbirth is basically a baby born dead.  I don't know if parents go about getting death certificates and all that.  But they certainly consider a stillbirth as the death of a person.

We're probably talking about two (or three) different issues here.  But most definitely the lack of a funeral in no way defines whether the deceased was a "person" or not.
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Offline rumborak

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #79 on: August 06, 2013, 03:28:09 PM »
A stillbirth is basically a baby born dead.  I don't know if parents go about getting death certificates and all that.  But they certainly consider a stillbirth as the death of a person.

In my experience, and I recently experienced it first-hand because a friend of mine had a miscarriage, there is a huge difference mentally between a miscarriage in the first trimester and one post first trimester. A doctor won't usually even see you before the second trimester starts, simply because the chances of miscarriage are so high (I think >20% or something). Woman are usually advised to not tell anyone until the second trimester, for the same reason.
I think couples perceive anything in the first trimester a gamble, and afterwards the "real thing" starts.
It is of course still a sad thing to have a miscarriage in the first trimester. But most of the sadness I think stems from the utter disappointment, not so much from the consideration that somebody died.
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Offline sueño

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #80 on: August 06, 2013, 03:38:08 PM »
A stillbirth is basically a baby born dead.  I don't know if parents go about getting death certificates and all that.  But they certainly consider a stillbirth as the death of a person.

In my experience, and I recently experienced it first-hand because a friend of mine had a miscarriage, there is a huge difference mentally between a miscarriage in the first trimester and one post first trimester. A doctor won't usually even see you before the second trimester starts, simply because the chances of miscarriage are so high (I think >20% or something). Woman are usually advised to not tell anyone until the second trimester, for the same reason.
I think couples perceive anything in the first trimester a gamble, and afterwards the "real thing" starts.

Ermm...as a parent I can tell you that is not true.  From the first visit to find out if you're pregnant you are encouraged to begin pre-natal care, which includes regular visits to the doctor (usually twice before the second trimester).  Whether to wait to tell others of the pregnancy is one thing but there is all kinds of health info a woman should give her doctor *before* the second trimester.  EDIT:  Actually after thinking about it, the very fact that miscarriage *is* a possibility early in a pregnancy, most doctors are keen to keep track of their patients and encourage communication about any "weird" things that might occur.  Doctor would want to try to prevent any mishaps.

Certainly, different people react to a terminated pregnancy in different ways.  A lot may depend on (here I go again) how much the pregnancy was longed for.  I've seen women practically lose their minds after miscarriages, simply because they wanted a baby so badly.

It is likely more traumatic to lose a pregnancy the further along the mother is.  But as every family is different, there is no fair way to qualify levels of devastation (or none) when it happens to a woman/couple.  :(
« Last Edit: August 06, 2013, 03:52:00 PM by sueño »
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Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #81 on: August 06, 2013, 06:42:36 PM »
It represents an inconsistency on their part. Hef is saying that if they recognize abortion as killing a person, they should also recognize a miscarriage/stillbirth as the death of a person. (I agree.)

On whose part?

Many do recognize it.  If you're talking about a law defining that, I'm not sure what to say.  Can you tell a family who delivered a stillborn child that it wasn't a person?

Again -- miscarriages are usually described as such during the first trimester, I believe.  Definitely harder to quantify but no less a tragedy for the family.  A stillbirth is basically a baby born dead.  I don't know if parents go about getting death certificates and all that.  But they certainly consider a stillbirth as the death of a person.

We're probably talking about two (or three) different issues here.  But most definitely the lack of a funeral in no way defines whether the deceased was a "person" or not.
On the part of the people that regard abortions at any stage as murder. To be consistent, they ought to regard miscarriages as a person's death as well.
"All great works are prepared in the desert, including the redemption of the world. The precursors, the followers, the Master Himself, all obeyed or have to obey one and the same law. Prophets, apostles, preachers, martyrs, pioneers of knowledge, inspired artists in every art, ordinary men and the Man-God, all pay tribute to loneliness, to the life of silence, to the night." - A. G. Sertillanges

Offline theseoafs

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #82 on: August 06, 2013, 07:02:58 PM »
I am not pro-life but I am unconvinced the funeral argument is a good one.  What would a funeral for a miscarriage look like?  Who do you invite to a miscarriage funeral?  What would the funeral attendees talk or reminisce about?  What kind of religious ceremony is appropriate for someone who wasn't born?  The whole idea just seems kind of ludicrous to me.

Offline sueño

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #83 on: August 06, 2013, 07:11:38 PM »
It represents an inconsistency on their part. Hef is saying that if they recognize abortion as killing a person, they should also recognize a miscarriage/stillbirth as the death of a person. (I agree.)

On whose part?

Many do recognize it.  If you're talking about a law defining that, I'm not sure what to say.  Can you tell a family who delivered a stillborn child that it wasn't a person?

Again -- miscarriages are usually described as such during the first trimester, I believe.  Definitely harder to quantify but no less a tragedy for the family.  A stillbirth is basically a baby born dead.  I don't know if parents go about getting death certificates and all that.  But they certainly consider a stillbirth as the death of a person.

We're probably talking about two (or three) different issues here.  But most definitely the lack of a funeral in no way defines whether the deceased was a "person" or not.
On the part of the people that regard abortions at any stage as murder. To be consistent, they ought to regard miscarriages as a person's death as well.

Maybe they do.  I have no political thoughts on the matter, just personal.  But I do think there is a difference between intentional and unintentional termination.



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Offline hefdaddy42

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #84 on: August 06, 2013, 11:27:56 PM »
I see some confusion here that is my fault.  I said stillbirths, and I meant miscarriages.

If both an abortion and a miscarriage are the death of a person, there should be a lot of conservative miscarriage funerals.  But there aren't.  Talk about a logical inconsistency.
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Offline eric42434224

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #85 on: August 07, 2013, 05:37:35 AM »
I see some confusion here that is my fault.  I said stillbirths, and I meant miscarriages.

If both an abortion and a miscarriage are the death of a person, there should be a lot of conservative miscarriage funerals.  But there aren't.  Talk about a logical inconsistency.

There should also be investigations and a trial in the death of any person, like sueno advocates, right?  The mother should be investigated to see if she was negligent in her prenatal actions or care that might have contributed to the miscarriage and death of a person.
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Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #86 on: August 07, 2013, 08:45:05 AM »
I see some confusion here that is my fault.  I said stillbirths, and I meant miscarriages.

If both an abortion and a miscarriage are the death of a person, there should be a lot of conservative miscarriage funerals.  But there aren't.  Talk about a logical inconsistency.

There should also be investigations and a trial in the death of any person, like sueno advocates, right?  The mother should be investigated to see if she was negligent in her prenatal actions or care that might have contributed to the miscarriage and death of a person.
Probably.
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Offline sueño

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #87 on: August 07, 2013, 09:50:31 AM »
If that's what would satisfy your curiosity.  :)
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Offline eric42434224

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #88 on: August 07, 2013, 11:15:22 AM »
I have no curiosity on that point.  Just expounding on Hefs point regarding the logical inconsistency.
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Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #89 on: August 14, 2013, 11:39:12 AM »
The problem is that the abortion issue is misconstrued more often than not. Both parties believe that a woman has a right over her body. Both parties believe that murder is wrong. Both (hopefully) believe that a woman's right over her body is trumped by another person's right to life, should the two conflict.

So really, the real questions we ought to be asking are: is a fetus's body part of a woman's body, or not? Is a fetus a person with a right to life, or not?

And it seems to me that the answers to those questions would not be dependent on the particular woman's opinion on the matter, or whether or not the conception of the fetus was an accident, or whether or not anyone cared about the fetus at all. (When we ask ourselves why we as adults have moral status and have human rights, or when we ask the state, it doesn't matter if we are disliked and unwanted, or unplanned by our parents. We have the same rights as the loved, popular kid whose parents named him before he was even conceived. Being unwanted doesn't take away your rights.)

So why it is left up to the woman to decide whether or not aborting her fetus is murder is beyond me. Her opinion doesn't determine whether or not a fetus is a morally significant person.
« Last Edit: August 14, 2013, 11:45:54 AM by Ħ »
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Offline rumborak

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #90 on: August 14, 2013, 12:04:13 PM »
You misconstrue the current situation, H.

The question you describe was established by the federal court in Roe vs. Wade, based on medical input, by looking hard at which point the fetus ceases to be a mere extension of the female body, and instead becomes its own entity. That point was deemed to be the start of the second trimester based on a ton of factors.

That is the framework of whether a woman commits murder or not. Whether she chooses to do it in the first trimester is her own moral decision, but it is not murder under federal law. In the eyes of the law she is destroying a part of her body, but that's her to do if she wants.
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Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #91 on: August 14, 2013, 12:29:19 PM »
No, I think I construed the issue correctly, that the question revolves around whether the fetus is part of the woman (and can therefore be treated as an extension of the woman's body) or the fetus is its own independent person. You implicitly seem to agree that this is, in fact, the big question behind the abortion issue by supplying an answer to the question when you hold to the decision made in Roe v Wade.

In discussing this issue, I am personally not interested in what the law currently says about abortion, but what the law ought to say about abortion. I'm interested more in the moral component of abortion, and from these moral considerations we can come to conclusions about how the law should reflect that moral component.
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Offline theseoafs

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #92 on: August 14, 2013, 12:35:09 PM »
So why it is left up to the woman to decide whether or not aborting her fetus is murder is beyond me. Her opinion doesn't determine whether or not a fetus is a morally significant person.

Well, no, she doesn't decide whether aborting her fetus is murder.  Aborting her fetus is never murder, legally speaking.  She only decides whether she wants to do it, just like everyone else decides whether they want to do any legal thing.

Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #93 on: August 14, 2013, 12:45:55 PM »
So why it is left up to the woman to decide whether or not aborting her fetus is murder is beyond me. Her opinion doesn't determine whether or not a fetus is a morally significant person.

Well, no, she doesn't decide whether aborting her fetus is murder.  Aborting her fetus is never murder, legally speaking.  She only decides whether she wants to do it, just like everyone else decides whether they want to do any legal thing.
If the answer to the question were that a fetus is nothing but a physical appendage to the woman, I'd agree with you. But this takes us back to the big question of whether or not a fetus is an independent person or not, which was my main point in the first place. But too often, the issue is misconstrued, and many pro-choicers (like President Obama) will say that the answer to this big moral question should be answered by the woman and not by the state. That's sounds backwards to me.
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Offline rumborak

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #94 on: August 14, 2013, 12:49:13 PM »
I'm not sure what your hangup is, H. The federal court has established the legal question. What remains is the moral question for the woman. But there's a lot of things in life where you are legally allowed to do something but might have moral reservations to do so.
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Offline theseoafs

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #95 on: August 14, 2013, 12:51:51 PM »
So why it is left up to the woman to decide whether or not aborting her fetus is murder is beyond me. Her opinion doesn't determine whether or not a fetus is a morally significant person.

Well, no, she doesn't decide whether aborting her fetus is murder.  Aborting her fetus is never murder, legally speaking.  She only decides whether she wants to do it, just like everyone else decides whether they want to do any legal thing.
If the answer to the question were that a fetus is nothing but a physical appendage to the woman, I'd agree with you. But this takes us back to the big question of whether or not a fetus is an independent person or not, which was my main point in the first place. But too often, the issue is misconstrued, and many pro-choicers (like President Obama) will say that the answer to this big moral question should be answered by the woman and not by the state. That's sounds backwards to me.

That's the same with any other potentially moral or controversial question that the state has given a liberal answer to.

A lot of people think that killing animals for their meat is murder.  Obviously, eating most animals is legal, so eating those animals is never murder.  But the moral choice is up to you -- you decide whether eating cows is okay, not the state.

Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #96 on: August 14, 2013, 12:52:50 PM »
To both of you - of course there are permissible wrongdoings under the law. But, supposing abortion is murder, would you think that that decision should still be left up to the woman, or it should it be illegal by law?
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Offline theseoafs

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #97 on: August 14, 2013, 12:53:26 PM »
If abortion were murder then it would be illegal.  The court has decided that it is not murder.

Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #98 on: August 14, 2013, 12:55:10 PM »
If abortion were murder then it would be illegal.  The court has decided that it is not murder.
Now you're just reasoning in circles. Abortion is not murder because the law says so; the law says so because abortion is not murder.

It could easily be the case that abortion is murder yet is still permissible under the law. Just like slavery was morally wrong but not illegal. There's nothing logically inconsistent about a) something being wrong and b) something being legal.
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Offline theseoafs

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #99 on: August 14, 2013, 12:58:20 PM »
 ???  There's a legal conception of murder, which is what the abortion debate is about.  Everyone also has a personal conception of what "murder" means.  The law has taken a liberal approach to the abortion issue so everyone is free to not have abortions if they think it is murder.

Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #100 on: August 14, 2013, 01:02:51 PM »
I see your confusion. I'm talking about the moral sense of the word "murder", where one could still "murder" someone else even in a lawless society. So, even if the law doesn't say that abortion is murder, it could very well be murder.

The correct conception of the abortion issue is primarily that of a moral dilemma - are fetuses independent persons or not? From the answer to that moral question, we derive our law. So it makes no sense to invoke the law to answer that question - that's circular reasoning.
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Offline rumborak

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #101 on: August 14, 2013, 01:06:58 PM »
How is the woman's view on this relevant now?  :huh: That's between her and her body. The law is what matters, basta.

Frankly, H, hopefully not offending you here, you're fishing for arguments at this point. You've done this before for other discussions, where you're constantly generating more and more far-fetched angles, in the hope one might stick.
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Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #102 on: August 14, 2013, 01:25:48 PM »
I don't think I've changed any arguments. Honestly rumborak, something I've noticed about you is that you don't pay attention. Why don't you go ahead and tell me what my main point has been this entire time? Tell me what I've argued for.
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Offline Ħ

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #103 on: August 14, 2013, 02:06:51 PM »
I didn't think you would answer.

My argument is simple - the crux of the abortion debate is whether or not a fetus is a person. That's it. That's how it always was - you accuse me of changing my position, but I've kept to it from the beginning. And you seem to agree with my position in recognizing this central question!

Frankly, it doesn't matter what the law says. All we need to do is to change the law to say what it ought to say. This is the task of an amendable legal system in a democracy. Things aren't wrong because they're illegal; they're wrong because they're wrong. The law doesn't define what is right and wrong, it identifies it. Because we all know that murder is wrong no matter where you go.

So the question before us a democracy is whether or not abortion is literally murder. If it's not murder, abortion is an amoral matter, like deciding what to eat for breakfast. But if it is murder, it shouldn't matter what a particular impregnated woman has to say about it. It's not up to her.
"All great works are prepared in the desert, including the redemption of the world. The precursors, the followers, the Master Himself, all obeyed or have to obey one and the same law. Prophets, apostles, preachers, martyrs, pioneers of knowledge, inspired artists in every art, ordinary men and the Man-God, all pay tribute to loneliness, to the life of silence, to the night." - A. G. Sertillanges

Offline kirksnosehair

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Re: This is illogical to me...
« Reply #104 on: August 14, 2013, 02:15:08 PM »
Whew!  Good thing it's not murder then, because we'd definitely have a HUGE prison population problem!   :eek