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Pro-choice quandary

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I must confess I do not get the rape, incest, or health of the mother exception.

 

It seems to me you believe it is a life and it is wrong to end it, or not? With all due respect it seems to smack of a bit of hypocrisy.

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Hmm my wife is adopted. She worked with a county health agency as a lactation consultant. She had the cream of the teenage mothers. I was pretty surprised by her thoughts - no child at 14 can be a good mother - even those who played at it and tried did not have the tools or maturity. Now throw in a former drug addict kid -- yep that kid would be so lucky to be raised in that environnment. She is sure people will now want to tell us all about the EXCEPTIONS - but that is what they are exceptions. She thinks it is worse to punish the baby by having in grow up in a situation that does not have much of a chance of a good outcome. After working with lots of teen moms - she will give them credit for trying, but she believes adoption or abortion. She thanks God her birth mother did not keep her. A child does not have the ability to think far ahead enough to decide what is best for the baby in the long run - if they did they would give them up to families who can offer more than childish love and a chance at a life.

So the question is: who really pays for the poor choices a young person makes?

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Talk about playing the state $$$$$ game, bring in Ms California. 8 babies, WOW. Then we find out that she has 6 more at home. What doctor in their right mind would approve giving this woman fertility drugs when she already has six at home???

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I already said I don't know what the outcome would have been for this young girl I'm talking about. I only know what the outcome WAS: Dead fetus, and a very depressed girl who was back on drugs and back with the loser boyfriend within days. She'd been clean and sober for 3 months before the abortion. Would it have stuck? Would she have been that exception who became an ok mother in the long run? I don't know. I don't believe she was an "addict" at the time -- just a girl making wrong choices. I haven't heard what's happened to her in the last 10 years or so, but my guess is that she's an addict by now.

 

The other part of the story is that her best friend was also pregnant at the time... a few months ahead of her. The friend gave birth and gave the child up for adoption. I do think adoption is probably the best choice for the vast majority of these young girls who are pregnant. In any case, I think it's a bunch of BS to talk about CHOICE when girls are forced or coerced into these situations. I don't care if other people say "it was for the best" that she had the abortion. What happened to this girl's choice?

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"She thinks it is worse to punish the baby by having in grow up in a situation that does not have much of a chance of a good outcome."

 

Wow.

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This is an issue with many facets, and to try to bring it down to only pro-choice vs. pro-life fals into a mass media level of trivialization.

 

On a personal level, my son came to me by adoption so I am grateful to his birth mother for not thinking he was a mistake to be disposed of.

 

As has been pointed out, the federal funding issue involves a gag order, not really funds for abortion. If an organization even mentioned abortion in the process of counseling a woman on her options in an unplanned pregnancy, then they faced the possibility of loss of ALL federal funds for whatever else they did, from family planning to prenatal care to breast and cervical cancer screening. That is just for words, not actions. I am a physician, and, depending on which hospital or clinic I am in, have had to dance around those linguistic prohibitions. It is equivalent to not mentioning birth control to post-partum women at the Catholic hospital, although in that setting it is out of respect for the doctrine and faith of the people in charge of the facility, not in obedience to some federal pronouncement based on political expediency.

 

The federal governemnt is not in the business of paying for abortions (separate orders and pay codes and other unfathomable red tape wound have to be unwound for Medicaid to pay for something like that). It has been in the business of suppressing information about abortion, even within the confines of the doctor (and nurse and nurse-practitioner and PA and patient educator and social worker and etc.)-patient relationship in facilities receiving federal funding.

 

Meanwhile, as as been pointed out in other posts, there is limited federal (or state) support for prenatal care (Many women without health insurance do not qualify for Medicaid. Some may qualify for a watered down version called CHIPS perinate. It is "woman as vessel" Medicaid, very narrowly defining what it will pay for and what it will not for example, not Pap smears since changes that could lead to cervical cancer will not affect the pregnancy in the short run.) Further, even though there are multiple listings for antiabortion groups in the yellow pages in my community (alphabetically listed before abortion providers), I have rarely had much success in actually finding help for the low income women with unplanned pregnancies who I care for. There might be a bag of diapers here or there, but not the mentoring that I think would be needed for some of these women to become successful parents.

 

One could say then, people who can't afford them shouldn't be making babies, which makes logical sense but avoids reality (although maybe young girls believing there really was a future for them might go a long way to postponing teen sexual activity and delaying or preventing teen pregnancy). On the other hand, governmental groups have had no trouble pushing a marginally effective HPV vaccine on teen girls and young women when the best way to prevent HPV is to limit the number of lifetime sexual partners (preferably to one). The whole HPV campaign seems to assume that all of these young women are sexually active.

 

Maybe it's all the sides of the issue that make it hard for people to see any of them clearly, but trivializing down to any kind of us vs them battle is not helpful. There are way too many diffenert shades of "us" and as many diffenert shades of "them". For me, I fall on lots of different edges of the issue all the time.

 

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I think it is not fair to trivialize the pro-life position as such.

 

If one truely believes that abortion is murder, none of the pre-natal care/ responsibility/ funding issues matter.

 

All that matters is innocent babeies are being murdered.

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Education never killed a baby. Counseling, listening to what the young woman has to say and explaining ALL the options for her pregnancy will not kill the baby. SHE may make a choice for abortion, but she also may not if it and her other options are explained to her. The leave the elephant in the room out of the discusion does not make the elephant go away.

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"Education never killed a baby. Counseling, listening to what the young woman has to say and explaining ALL the options for her pregnancy will not kill the baby. SHE may make a choice for abortion, but she also may not if it and her other options are explained to her."

 

I agree. I think that ignorance is never an enhancement to the search for solutions to problems in life. This is a rational approach regardless of which political stance one takes. Speaking of which...

 

"...you make it a lot harder than it is."

"Life starts at conception."

The Scout, that is a political stance, not a biological one. I would like to see your support for it even to be a religious stance.

 

It isn't simple. Your statement is the kind of thing people think about with great certainty and confidence while watching the sun and stars orbit the earth.

 

I can make a more credible argument that life is a continuum and you have no biological counter-argument unless you also believe in spontaneous generation. But the political stance that you stated isn't even workable, for that matter, because while you think you know what 'conception' is, in the above statement you have left its meaning to be some nebulous fantasy that everyone else is free to interpret in their own way. Any definition you propose has equally valid alternatives. And that's just the beginning...you haven't addressed any of the other issues. Fill in the details if you want to intrude your political views and big government into the lives of others.

 

Edited to respond to pinkflame (I'd like to know more about that nickname)(This message has been edited by packsaddle)

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If you take such an approach, there really are no "other issues." For example, pre-natal care is not part of the debate because it does not affect the fact that there was a murder.

 

The government punishing the crime of murder is not intruding on the lives of others sir or "big government." Unless you do not think the government should be involved in punishing crime.

 

I don't know if there are such 'equally valid" methods of saying when conception is. Sounds to me like someone who is a moral relativist and can say a variety of moral arguments are equally good.

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2eagles: I think most professionals in the public health trenches agree with your wife. I know I do. A 14 year old giving birth to a baby she cannot care for and cannot afford into a life of poverty, drugs, gangs, and unemployment is child abuse, pure and simple. Perhaps we should lock up and/or sterilize the mothers so they can't make the same "mistake" again. To those who think abortion is "murder" and an absolute mortal sin, what have you/are you personally doing to help? How many have you adopted? How many thousands of dollars are you donating to support these "mistakes" (other than your taxes)? How many hours have you personally volunteered (standing in front of the clinic with bloody pictures doesn't count)? It's easy to preach anonymously on a forum and tell people that they are sinners from your gilded pulpit. If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem. No, I don't like abortion. But I HATE what I've witnessed in the 'hood. NO CHILD should have to live and grow up like that.

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Somebody made some comment about men being taken out of the issue. I find that almost funny, since the vast majority of both politicians and doctors and religious leaders in positions to control access to information have been men. You know who I think often gets over-looked in this debate are women who, when faced with an unexpected pregnancy (for whatever reason), make the decision to have the baby. Some get married, some do not. Some of those marriages stand the test of time, some do not. Some put the baby up for adoption, some do not. But it isn't such an uncommon situation. And it isn't only 14 year old girls from inner cities we're talking about here either. I'm willing to bet that almost everyone on this board knows somebody whose family started out that way. And you know what? I've found that women who have walked a mile in those shoes, no matter what choice they made and no matter how it worked out for them and for their child, tend to be a little bit more uncertain about ALL of the options, a little less high and mighty and dogmatic. And a lot more compassionate to others who find themselves in a difficult position. Hmm.

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I know several people who got pregnant before marriage. Some of them chose abortion, and lived to regret it. Others chose to get married, and are still married 20+ years later. Each one of these friends who kept their babies and married the baby's father can not imagine not having their first child. My friends who had abortions lament the fact that society back then did not do much to educate people on the reality of abortion. My friends take full responsibility for their decisions, but would likely have made a better choice if provided with better information. Each of my friends who chose abortion are vehemently pro-life, now, and if they could go back in time, they would choose adoption. Marriage was not an option for them at that time, but they realize now, that killing their baby was the absolute wrong decision.

 

My parents have a friend who encouraged his daughter to have an abortion when she got pregnant out of wed-lock 25 years ago. She instead kept the baby and luckily for her, married the child's father and is still married. The grandfather became pro-life as soon as his grandchild was born, and tells anyone who will listen, how wrong he was to encourage abortion. Every time he thinks of his grandchild, he thanks God that his daughter did not listen to him!

 

Of course, not all pregnancies end up with happy stories, so that is where adoption comes in. I have several friends who are adopted and I am thankful their parents did not choose abortion.

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Scoutldr, you are right that many pro-lifers do not put their money where their mouth is. Much more is needed to help pay for the care of women with unwanted pregnancies.

 

My family has very little extra money since we have chosen for me to be a stay-at-home mom. The ONLY charity, besides church, that I give money to, is to help unwed mothers. If I were rich, I would "adopt" as many of these women/babies as I could afford, but alas, I can only responsibly afford to provide for the 2 children that I chose to have. I wanted more kids, but knew I would need to work in order to afford more kids, so we stopped at two.

 

Since we didn't have much extra money, I usually donated gently used baby/child items since I couldn't afford to be buying new items for my own kids as well as somebody else's. I recently filled a baby bottle with cash and spare change for the God's Gift program of Crisis Pregnancy Center. I wish I could do more. Just imagine what could be done if every pro-lifer gave even the small amount that I do, each year!

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