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Pro-choice quandary

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Actually, I wrote, "...FUNNY hat". Try to get it right, please. And to be fair about this, I could just as well have been describing faculty (me included) and students at any number of college and university graduation ceremonies...equally ridiculous from a certain perspective.

But that is a digression. Beavah, life began several billion years ago and hasn't stopped yet. If you think the human egg is not alive, or if you think it isn't human, then don't let ignorance stop you from concocting any number of other irrational statements and ideas about it. The funny hat is optional.

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Ed, technology is what will ultimately defeat any and every effort to regulate reproductive rights.


That's why I asked


Why do reproductive rights need to be regulated?


And it's Pittsburgh, not Pittsburg. That city is located in Kansas or New Hampshire & neither have any professional football teams.

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Yah, pack, generally speakin', when a writing refers by quotation to a previous author, the writin' is probably respondin' to that author. "Pointy hat" was ASM915, eh? Though I can certainly see how you'd be self-conscious about that sort of comment. ;)


Still waitin' on your well-reasoned and testable position on when life begins and is worthy of protection, eh! Surely you're not one of those professors who ridicules the work of young lads like TheScout but fails to hold yourself to the same standard?




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Beavah, I guess I missed that other 'hat' comment. I apologize.

As for the other question, I answered it I thought. I repeat, "Beavah, life began several billion years ago and hasn't stopped yet." I think I can demonstrate in a number of different ways that unfertlized human eggs that are capable of being fertilized, are alive. I can test this, for example, by measuring the metabolic rate, or watching the internal cytoplasmic motion, or perhaps by using vital stains that are specific for certain living processes. Those are just a few. The claim that "life begins at conception" is demonstrably false.


As for your comment about protection, I thought I had been clear on this many times by now. I think the decision should be left to those who bear the responsiblity. The woman should be free to make that choice, with her doctor's assistance if that's what she wants. The trimester system that is employed now seems to be workable for doctors and their patients. Or am I wrong?


Edited part: Oops, Sorry Ed abuot teh mispelign. Reproductive rights don't need to be regulated by anyone but the individuals engaged in the commerce and who bear the responsiblity, certainly not by a government.(This message has been edited by packsaddle)

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Beavah and Pack,

I made the comment about the pointy little hat. Being Catholic, I don't mind making fun of me and my religion on occasion. We also call him the Vatican's Rottweiler, all in fun and jest.


Beavah, the assisted suicide was in jest also. The one thing I love to throw out to the ICU and CCU staff, is that when a ventilator dependent patient keeps trying to pull out their breathing tube or trach tube, are they considered to be attempting suicide, knowing well that this may cause them to die, and do they need a Psych consult. That question definitely gets some funny looks.


Pack, twas I who tossed out the doner issue. Rumor has it that China has a great organ doner program in place. They don't execute their death rowers, they supposedly just take them to the OR, and retreive suitable organs for transplant. What a novel consept. At least we know that our organs aren't drugged or infected.

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ASM915, not exacly PC but I thought it expresses a great sense of humor, the rottweiler thing! Enough about hats, already.


Yeah, I almost wrote about that other source of organ donations but I thought the topic of 'outsourcing' would be off-topic.;)

Not to mention that it really makes those of us who ride on two wheels just a bit nervous...we do need, after all, to be politically correct and protect the tender sensibilties of all those bikers.

You won't catch ME making cracks about THEIR hats! :)

Have a nice day.

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Pack, I may not have the resources to ask this well enough to have you comprehend, but if you don't I know its because I haven't formulated the question well.


I can see your argument that unfertilized eggs are alive. They are alive just as my blood cells are alive, brain cells are alive and even the follicles down at the end of my remaining hairs are alive. But none of these cells, even the unfertilized eggs have the ability to develop into a human. But the fertilized egg does have the ability to develop into a human. When sperm and egg unite, there exists the potential of a human, at what point do these mass of cells become worthy of state protection?

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Beavah, the term is "heroic measures" or at least that was the term I was taught. Heroic measures would be taking a brain dead patient, placing them on a ventilator while hooked up to a dialysis machine and the patient would continue to breathe, create blood cells and the kidneys would filter blood. The patient could be deemed "Alive" except for the lack of brain activity. A 93 year old patient with failing kidneys and with poor liver function may be diagnosed with breast cancer and decide not to have chemotherapy and not have a mastectomy. In that situation, the heroic measure would be treating the breast CA. There is nothing wrong with allow the patient to chart her course of health care.


The inevitable reality is that all life ends in death, the issue becomes who gets to administer/regulate that end point

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OGE, the problem with your question is with the word, "worthy". If I phrase it, 'At what point should this mass of cells come under state protection?' then I can answer more easily although the answer seems glib. It should come under state protection whenever the people decide they want the state to protect it. Right now, in most states, the people have decided. And sometimes they change their minds.


Inserting the concept of 'worth' adds an element of judgement that demands further detail. For those who hold that there are moral absolutes, the fact that the 'people' of a state can change their minds on this issue - is troubling.

As for me, I am troubled by the whole concept of 'worthiness' when applied to human life. It makes me think in terms that would be contrary to Godwin's rule.;)


If the question is phrased a bit differently: to ask, for example, when the 'soul' enters the embryo? I have no idea. No one else does either, in any objective or demonstrable manner. Anyone who would like to assign a 'point' where this happens would have to contend with many equally valid alternative 'points' that might be in conflict with their beliefs. Not to mention the fact that many see the concept of a 'soul' in terms of mysticism and magic - fun to play with but not real.


As a practical matter, you must understand by now that no matter what the situation or decision on the abortion issue, some portion of the 'people' are not going to agree with it. The current status of, state-by-state, the people allowing or limiting access to abortion is workable. I don't agree with it but I accept it, especially with the unlikely prospect of even greater limits placed by government on personal freedom.


So my answer is that I would not pick the 'point' at which the mass of cells is worthy of state protection. The state should butt out. I would leave the decision to the woman - and her physician if that is her choice. Again, except to alter the cost and convenience, it's an unavoidable reality anyway.

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I knew that no matter how I asked the question, my syntax and phraseology would get in the way.


Yes, I was asking when the "soul", when that mass of cells becomes human. All the genetic material a person has is in the first two cells, the egg and sperm. When they unite, the persons frame, eye color, bloof type are decided (so I have been told). What is contained there is a potential human. To articially end its exitence is to end the existence of a human. At least to my thinking. I don't know the law nor do I play anything on TV.


The argument that a woman can make that it's my body and I can do with I want with it is false, is not suicide agains the law? And I mean civil Law. Even then, it suicide was not illegal, is not the terminating of a potential human, someone who could live outside the mother when fully developed ending the life of a human? SOmetimes the argument is made that sucking up a mass of cells is not terminating human life, its just sucking up a mass of cells that might develop into cells, but what about partial birth abortions? Babies who can survive outside of the mother are terminated with parts of the body outside the mother. Babies that could survive out of the mother are terminated because they happen to be in the mother.


I guess I dont understand the terminating of another life in any situation. Then again, as I look at that statement I understand I have my exceptions. Enter my abode with intent to maim/kill/harm me and mine and yes, I may kill you. As a soldier in a war, as I face the opposition, yes I will kill that person. So, am I consistent? heck, I run behind my humanity, I dont have to be

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TheScout, yes you can. You will also risk punishment by the state. However, if he happens to be a lost Japanese student who is trying to find a Halloween party in Georgia, you'll get away with it. If you can make a credible claim that you felt threatened by him, in some states you'll get away with it. I think that NY is not one of them so you'll need to cover your tracks.


OGE, suicide is not against the law in all states. Besides, what is the punishment for suicide? Duh!

As far as who makes the decisions, are you ready to take on that responsibility for everyone else? No matter what the circumstances? Are you ready to confront the incredible number of complicating factors for these decisions...on behalf of all other people? Do you think this is an easy, simple task?

If not, what makes you think that goverment can do this better than you can?

If you DO think you're ready to make the decisions for everyone else, what makes you better at it than those for whom you are making the decisions?

Are the answers to these questions coming to you quickly and easily? I hope not.

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OGE, let me give you a couple of morsels for thought from someone who's been on the other side.


Just because an egg has been fertilized is by no means a guarantee of a live birth. The standard statistic is that only 3 out of 4 pregnancies are successful, but that statistic may be lower as we have the ability to detect conception at an earlier and earlier stage. There has been some counterbalance as we have also been getting better in being able to salvage pregnancies that would have otherwise spontaneously terminated. So when something only has a 75% chance of actually becoming "life", perhaps some people only see abortion as possibly doing what nature would have done anyway.


A significant percentage of abortions are procured by married women who have had at least 2 children, and, despite their best efforts at birth control, find themselves with an unwanted pregnancy. What exactly is a married woman to do if she doesn't want any more children? All birth control has a failure rate. Even so-called sterilizations (which many can't even get because insurance won't pay for it) fail. Should she force her husband into abstinence? Despite the jokes about the (non)sex life of married people, there are plenty of marriages where that would be a deal breaker. Many people talk about adoption as if that's an easy thing. That is not an easy decision, either, especially if there are already children at home.


Again, contrary to the stereotype promoted by many anti-choice groups, the decision to terminate is not easy for the vast majority of woman or couples who chose it. It is an agonizing decision, even when one has a very valid medical need.


As someone said in the other thread, and was my first answer when asked my stance by my parents long ago, I wish we lived in a perfect world where no woman or couple had to make that decision. But because we don't, there are too many extenuating circumstances, and too many complex variables to make me comfortable with a blanket ban on abortion. And because we also can't write laws to take all those circumstances into account, I think the decision is best left among the woman, hopefully the man, their doctor, and their god(s).


And again with the partial birth abortion meme that gets brought up frequently by anti-choice groups. Do you know the percentage of abortions performed as D&X (the actual medical term for the procedure)? It's estimated at less than one percent of total terminations. And usually, it's done because of a medical necessity (death in utero or threatened maternal death).


I, like most people who favor choice, have no problem with restrictions on timing of terminations (with medical exceptions). And we could probably eliminate almost all terminations outside of the first trimester through better education and (ironically) better access to terminations. Most women who wait do so because they didn't know enough or didn't have access.


There are those who support abortion bans who would force a woman battling cancer for her life to attempt to carry a pregnancy to term, even if it meant she could not undergo essential treatments for the cancer. Did you know that many drugs used in cancer treatment interact to negate the effects of birth control pills?


I would much rather see the time, money, and energy spent trying to find ways to reduce abortions through better support, better education, better access to birth control (including research on better forms on birth control).

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A rose by any other name would still smell as sweet


Whether it calling it Partial Birth Abortion, or D&X, it is what it is, and I say its wrong no matter what percentage of times its done.


So, I kill an elderly gent, and my defense is, hey, he was on his last legs, how do you know he wouldn't have died that night anyway?


Yes, I know that not every fertilized egg becomes a human, I am saying that that fertilized mass of cells deserves the right to either develop or not develop unencumbered by saline solution or vacuum cleaner.


Yes many women find the decision to abort difficult, because they know what they are doing and know its wrong, but expedient to do so.

If you can't rise the child adoption is viable, you don't have to see the baby.

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