limecat wrote:The biggest problems with these sorts of debates is that on the surface it appears that we are debating over one thing-- whether abortion is OK or not. But in reality, the discussion is hinging around a much bigger topic-- what each individual sees as the marker of personal value, the value of life in its different forms, your view of the world (religious vs athiest) and its origins, etc.
Im also noting that people seem to be treating pregnancy as if it is some sort of incidental affliction that accompanies sex, an aberration (re: the comment about birth control failing). I think it would be helpful to a rational discussion of the topic if we could agree that the functional goal of sex IS pregnancy. Whether or not someone wanted a pregnancy, or didn't think they were making that choice, they make it whenever they have sex.
On sex and reproduction: many things that I consider sex (masturbation, manual sex, oral sex, fisting, anal sex, lesbian sex, male gay sex) have no risk of pregnancy. Sex does not exist in order to make reproduction occur. When I have sex, it is not in order to have offspring. Sure, the evolutionary basis of sex drives is all about reproduction, but when I have sex, it's about my culture and my morals and my expectation, not about reproduction. Oral and manual sex are not replacements for some "real thing": to me they are much better and much more my actual point. If I were to get pregnant, it would be a failure of birth control, not a success of sex.
And this debate isn't about whether abortion is OK or not: it's whether abortion would be OK or not if a one-cell zygote could be easily raised to birth in a piece of technology and a fetus could be easily un-implated and put into that technology.
I've been thinking about this, and I have a few other questions on this topic.
If this technology could catch and grow miscarriages and implanted zygotes, then would failing to use it be morally the same as abortion? What amount of schedule disruption would a women have to undergo to save the "naturally" lost zygote or pregnancy before you'd consider it abortion? If failing to use it to save an implanted zygote or spontaneous abortion is never morally wrong, what is the difference between that and taking drugs to prevent implantation, a medical or a surgical abortion?
If you are pro-life or have a threshold at which you consider abortion wrong, would this technology change the stage at which you think abortion is wrong? (If you think preventing implantation is not wrong, would being able to artificially raise the zygote change your mind? If you think that 1st trimester abortions are not wrong, would being able to raise the fetus change your morals?)
I guess one of the reasons that I find this topic so fascinating is that the Catholic Church used to consider quickening to be the beginning of pregnancy. Technology has already radically changed societies' views of when pregnancy starts and what abortion is. It's very interesting to me that no-one (that I recall: I looked back over the thread and still didn't see anything) has openly and specifically said that this technology would change their moral views on abortion.