Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby yurell » Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:54 am UTC

omgryebread, I could understand that argument if the cure destroyed human foetuses. I'm sure it would suck for guys, but if you believe that it is immoral to destroy the foetus and you are consistent in your application of that belief, then I understand. I disagree, but I understand.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby omgryebread » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:03 am UTC

Torchship wrote:Are "I'm glad I'm not poor; I enjoy eating regularly" or "I'm glad I'm not black; I enjoy not being oppressed based on my race" inherently anti-poor or anti-black statements, respectively? Identifying (and expressing relief at not having to deal with) real problems that members of a given group must death with is not anti-that group in any meaningful way.
No, they aren't inherently. But if you also opposed things like welfare or non-discrimination laws designed to alleviate those problems, then yes, they are anti-poor or anti-black.

yurell wrote:omgryebread, I could understand that argument if the cure destroyed human foetuses. I'm sure it would suck for guys, but if you believe that it is immoral to destroy the foetus and you are consistent in your application of that belief, then I understand. I disagree, but I understand.
I'd understand as well in that case. But were that true, and I opposed the testicular cancer cure on those grounds, I'd still be supporting an anti-male policy.

If someone were then to say "you're awfully casual about testicular cancer, since you can't get it," and I were to reply "yeah, good thing I can't, right?" then I would definitely be overly dismissive of the concern of men, and the statement would be misandrous.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Soralin » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:03 am UTC

Dark Avorian wrote:If someone believes life begins at conception [well implantation is the better standard even if you're pro life...] , then abortion is murder. I should take this sentence to point out I'm pro-choice. And I'm sorry, but as reasonable as the opinions of the pro-choicer's are is it that unreasonable to think that a replicating mass of cells with distinct DNA that is the beginning stages of a human is human?

Furthermore, another argument commonly used is that an unwanted baby raised in bad circumstances will live a horrible life. Quick point: how many people would advocate the killing of third world children in horrible circumstances to free them? I apologize for the hyperbole, but I only use it, because to a person who believes the life has already begun, those are perfectly morally equivalent. Why is it so unreasonable to think a life lived poor and miserable is better than no life at all?

It seems all of these are non-sequiturs. Something being alive does not make killing it murder, bacteria are alive, plants are alive. Something even being human life doesn't make killing it murder, human skin cells are alive, but there's not some huge outcry when someone scratches an itch. This may seem a bit pedantic, but I see this same thing over and over again. Asking if a fetus is alive, or asking if it's human, are the wrong questions. They're the wrong questions, because the answers to them don't actually matter to the situation at hand, they don't change anything ethically or morally, as evidenced by people's actions to things like human skin cells, which meet both of those criteria, but which aren't treated in the same way.

And to compound that, people may say, well, they didn't mean that definition of "life", or of "human", but that causes a problem, because when you try to figure out what they actually mean by it, they may just be going by some general sense or idea, often just based on what they see of the people around them, something which is vague and subjective, and may vary from person to person. Something which they don't even expect there to be an objective answer for, and often, they don't even intend to look for one. It's a problem, because the very way people are framing the idea, the way they're thinking about the issue in their own minds, is confusing and muddling the issue, even to themselves.

Now, "person" may not be all that unambiguous itself, but at least you can draw some sharper lines. And it's something independent of either of the questions of life or humanity. Something can be life, and human, and not be a person (eg. human skin cell). And something can be neither life, nor human, and be a person (eg. Strong AI). Generally, how we define a person, it seems a necessary condition is having a mind. It's not always a sufficient condition, even very simple animals can have a mind of sorts, and not be considered a person, but I would call it a necessary condition (i.e. you can't have a person without a mind). Looking at it from that direction, the answer is simple, a cell at conception does not have a mind, therefore, is not a person.

And if that isn't the criteria by which people judge what is of importance here, than what is? We already ruled out that human, or life, or human life are what's important, simply by looking at how people treat things which meet those conditions in general, and finding a lack of any consistency.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby yurell » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:12 am UTC

omgryebread wrote:]I'd understand as well in that case. But were that true, and I opposed the testicular cancer cure on those grounds, I'd still be supporting an anti-male policy.


I'd be a tad dubious about the word 'anti-male' here. While yes, it is clear that the people negatively affected will be males, which inherently makes it 'anti-male', I feel it does so in the same trivial sense that welfare is 'anti-rich' and supporting abortion is 'anti-foetus'. You can describe support for almost anything as anti-something else, but I feel it's a tad misleading if the reason isn't that. For example, if another woman said the cure for testicular cancer should be banned because it's 'just men', I would feel she is incredibly wrong, just as if a man said abortion should be banned because it's 'just women'.

To me, the label (while technically true) feels confrontational. I'm sure someone can couch anything in which anyone believes in 'anti-' rhetoric, and while true the connotations certainly don't sit right.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Torchship » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:17 am UTC

omgryebread wrote:No, they aren't inherently. But if you also opposed things like welfare or non-discrimination laws designed to alleviate those problems, then yes, they are anti-poor or anti-black.


If one opposes help for the poor, or for the black community, then one may (and absolutely not necessarily, for exactly the same reason that levying taxes against the rich specifically is not inherently "anti-rich" in any meaningful way) be anti-poor or anti-black. Identifying real, significant problems that members of these communities must deal with does not make one a single iota more or less anti-poor or anti-black than one was previously.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Qaanol » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:34 am UTC

I would like to mention that, as a result of threads like this one, and the Rape Culture thread before it, my awareness has vastly improved regarding the extent to which anti-woman attitudes permeate our culture. Many people hold beliefs and carry out actions that are thoroughly sexist, without realizing they do so. Through reading and participating in these discussions, I have begun to appreciate the depth of the problem. It is the sort of thing, much like the arrow in the FedEx logo, that once you see, you cannot unsee. You start to notice it every time an instance crops up in front of you, which is rather often.

Torchship wrote:Certainly, the perspective of someone who has endured the action under discussion (or has a significant chance of doing so) is significantly more valuable than someone who has not, in general (unless such a person is believed to be particularly biased by their experiences, which I don't feel is true here). This, however, does not mean that the opinion of someone (or a group of people) who have experienced the events automatically trumps the opinion of someone who has not, which I feel is the implication behind your repeated statements. In this case, I believe that the opinions of women who have had abortions (which, to my knowledge, are generally in favour of abortion) are entirely correct, but this is not the only factor to be considered.

Imagine if it were the other way around. Imagine if the people who directly experienced the action in question were not allowed to give their input. In Mississippi, among far too many states, that’s actually the case for a large number of issues. By which I mean, certain felons in Mississippi are not allowed to vote. On anything. And if this “personhood” amendment goes through, and it actually has the effect of making abortion count as murder, then a woman who has an abortion would not be able to vote. Ever. Unless the governor or both state houses granted her a special re-enfranchisement. She would not be able to vote for representatives who might act to change the abortion laws how she would prefer them. She would not be able to vote, period.

That, of course, is primarily a tirade against the practice of disenfranchisement in general. I firmly aver that every adult citizen should have the right to vote, and that right should not be subject to revocation for any reason whatsoever.

yurell wrote:omgryebread, I could understand that argument if the cure destroyed human foetuses. I'm sure it would suck for guys, but if you believe that it is immoral to destroy the foetus and you are consistent in your application of that belief, then I understand. I disagree, but I understand.

But the hypothesized cure for testicular cancer necessarily involves spilling the man’s seed upon the ground, which is an abomination punishable by death. Clearly this view is the correct one, as it is supported by a religious text, so it must be incorporated into the laws. So, tough luck guys. I’m a guy, and it totally sucks that if I get testicular cancer I won’t be able to get treatment, but it’s my responsibility to wear a tinfoil cup at all times, and if I abrogate that duty I deserve the consequences.

yurell wrote:I'd be a tad dubious about the word 'anti-male' here. While yes, it is clear that the people negatively affected will be males, which inherently makes it 'anti-male', I feel it does so in the same trivial sense that welfare is 'anti-rich' and supporting abortion is 'anti-foetus'. You can describe support for almost anything as anti-something else, but I feel it's a tad misleading if the reason isn't that. For example, if another woman said the cure for testicular cancer should be banned because it's 'just men', I would feel she is incredibly wrong, just as if a man said abortion should be banned because it's 'just women'.

The thing is, just about no one will own up to being “anti-men” or “anti-women”. The vast majority of the people in question do not even realize their positions are discriminatory. And when that fact is pointed out to them, most will deny it, and rationalize their belief with other justification. Overall, our society is slathered with anti-women sentiments, attitudes, behaviors, and traditions, and those who perpetuate the status quo almost never realize they are contributing to the problem, as they by and large remain oblivious to the existence of the problem entirely.

Raising awareness is an important component of moving toward a better, more equal future. But another important part is fighting back when attempts are made to restrict freedoms, reduce equality, and deny assistance.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby yurell » Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:08 am UTC

Qaanol wrote:But the hypothesized cure for testicular cancer necessarily involves spilling the man’s seed upon the ground, which is an abomination punishable by death. Clearly this view is the correct one, as it is supported by a religious text, so it must be incorporated into the laws. So, tough luck guys. I’m a guy, and it totally sucks that if I get testicular cancer I won’t be able to get treatment, but it’s my responsibility to wear a tinfoil cup at all times, and if I abrogate that duty I deserve the consequences.


If your problem is that it violates your morality, I can understand that. I disagree with the decision, but I do understand.

Qaanol wrote:The thing is, just about no one will own up to being “anti-men” or “anti-women”. The vast majority of the people in question do not even realize their positions are discriminatory. And when that fact is pointed out to them, most will deny it, and rationalize their belief with other justification. Overall, our society is slathered with anti-women sentiments, attitudes, behaviors, and traditions, and those who perpetuate the status quo almost never realize they are contributing to the problem, as they by and large remain oblivious to the existence of the problem entirely.

Raising awareness is an important component of moving toward a better, more equal future. But another important part is fighting back when attempts are made to restrict freedoms, reduce equality, and deny assistance.


Indeed, I do agree, but the problem is that 'pro-' anything can be called 'anti-' something else, and immediately attacking someone on it just makes them defensive and less amenable to compromise. If I'm discussing welfare, and someone comes up and accuses me of 'anti-rich', yes it's technically true that I am supporting anti-rich doctrine, but that's not the reason I'm doing it. I really do feel the reason behind it is more important here. An example I would like to use is the decision to make marital rape rape, rather than just telling us it's our duty to open our legs. This was a pro-women decision, I'm sure everyone will agree, because that was the intent behind it. It did, however, remove a 'right' (one that shouldn't have existed, but did nonetheless) of men to take their wives whenever the please — by that reasoning, it could be called an anti-men (or anti-married men) decision, since only men suffered 'negative consequences' as the result of the law change.

However, if someone called it that, I'd imagine you'd baulk, and rightly so. I guess I'm just in favour of lighter language — accusing someone of being 'anti-women' sounds more like a personal attack than 'your stance negatively effects women'. It's not the reason they're doing it, but it is something I agree that they need to be made aware of, and people who feel as though they've been insulted are far less likely to listen to rational discourse. It's even worse when you're accusing them of being anti-women, rather than their point — it's quite plausible that they aren't at all anti-women and didn't understand that their point was, as you pointed out.
"Overall, our society is slathered with anti-women sentiments, attitudes, behaviors, and traditions, and those who perpetuate the status quo almost never realize they are contributing to the problem, as they by and large remain oblivious to the existence of the problem entirely."
I agree with your point, and because they never realise is why they must be taught. I can imagine some guy dismissing an accusation of being 'anti-women' out of hand as the 'delusional ranting of a hardcore feminist', but would realise that his actions were sexist if it were those actions that were attacked, rather than himself.

An example is in computer games (I go to this topic because I get it a lot), when people harmlessly crack jokes about wanting to get married or go out. They don't realise that these things are sexist, and if they were accused of being 'anti-women' would, again, just shrug it off. But you can tell them that it is sexist, and how receiving it all the time really wears you down, and maybe they'll take from that to not do it again.

A pregnant woman is carrying another organism, and at what stage this organism should count as a person, and thus its destruction murder, is a very important point to establish. These people have chosen a point I strongly disagree with, but to dismiss their arguments out of hand (not accusing you of doing this) is just as bad as them dismissing ours.


I know what I wrote made a great deal of sense in my head, but I'm not sure how well that translated out. In short, I think 'anti-' rhetoric is confrontational, and that it's much more important to attack the point than the person. A person who supports an 'anti-woman' contention for reasons other than it being anti-woman (e.g. it being pro-foetus) isn't necessarily anti-woman themselves or 'being anti-woman'. A person who supports it because it's anti-woman is a bigot.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby morriswalters » Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:25 am UTC

Spoiler:
omgryebread wrote:
morriswalters wrote:Pardon me for asking, but how is taking responsibility meaningful if there are no consequences? It seems like I taught my children that taking responsibility meant accepting the consequences of their actions.



morriswalters wrote:I may well be wrong. It wouldn't be the first time. However I'm not a misogynist. But you are welcome to your opinion. I didn't invent the consequences, they come with the territory. The best ethicist can't answer the question posed by the proposed Amendment, which is when human life begins. I'm glad you have an opinion. So do I. Just to state my point of view, I believe life starts when the placenta is fully formedfunctioning. At which point the organism is a genetically distinct individual which would be destroyed by the woman's immune system if not for the protection of the placenta. In addition I have another mans children because he walked way from them so I believe I have a fairly good insight to the problems that children can present when one or both parents don't want them.
You didn't cause every single case of bad brakes in the world either (as far as I know, you haven't caused any cases). Yet you're fine with people using airbags? Your second post says you're not a misogynist, and brings up your actually valid (wrong, but valid) concerns about when life begins. I'm not railing against this argument. I'm saying your argument in the first quote is directly indicative of misogyny. I don't think you're "rawr women suck let's oppress them," but your argument about consequences is anti-woman. Your second quoted post doesn't address that.


Sex has a consequence, pregnancy. Unless another action is taken, abortion. Sometimes this consequence is undesirable, or less desirable than the abortion.

There are three reasons you would oppose allowing abortion.

One is absurd. You oppose all attempts to mitigate consequences to oneself of any actions taken by oneself. In this case, you'd have to support bans on treating people who have ODed on drugs (even with their own money), treating the injuries of people who crashed while driving drunk. You'd have to say it was morally wrong to help someone up if they tripped (they should know tripping is a possible consequence of walking. And it's morally wrong to mitigate consequences.)

Two is that you oppose abortion. This is your claimed position. In this case, note, you theoretically don't have any opposition to mitigating the consequences of sex. Let's assume that doctors developed a procedure that could transfer the baby from the unwilling mother to a woman who desired the baby. The operation has no risk to the baby, and is no more invasive than an abortion. If your opposition to abortion is truly only that you oppose the destruction of the fetus, then you would be okay with this.

Three is that sex without intent to procreate is morally wrong. Wrong actions should lead to negative consequences. Therefore, attempting to mitigate these consequences is morally wrong, in the same way helping a convicted criminal escape is wrong. Taking this position, one would oppose the magical operation above. This position is anti-sex. And since the consequences for sex fall overwhelmingly on the woman, this position is anti-woman. Misogynist.


The cool thing is that position two does not take any position on consequences directly. Their argument is that abortion is wrong because of what it is. They support enforcing the consequences of abortion only indirectly. Arguments about how people should "accept the consequences" are only relevant to positions 1 and 3. I'm going to assume you aren't holding position 1, because that's a very silly position. You claim to hold position 2, and you also claim to not be misogynist, so you don't hold position 3.

Yet you are using an argument that only makes sense in light of positions you don't hold! So either you are holding position 3, or you're just using an irrelevant and misogynist argument.


I spoilered the post from omgryebread to hold down the clutter.

1 I prefer prevention to remediation, but accept that prevention doesn't always work. However responsibility would mandate seeing where your protection failed, and making sure it doesn't fail twice, unless of course you wish to have multiple abortions and assume the risks associated with said procedure.

2 I suggest you reread my posts however I'll spare you the need by restating it. I am pro choice, but I find abortion as a primary form of birth control distasteful. I suspect fetal transfer would not be an ideal solution from my point of view, simply because women would see it as a intrusive procedure. Barring that I'd be okay with it.

3 It's always fun to have sex, or at least it is for me. What I actually said was that responsibility and consequences are inevitably linked. You can't always anticipate the consequences that go along with your choices. The sex act is relatively easy compared to some. There are some really serious and mostly preventable consequences, with pregnancy being the least of those.

I hope your satisfied, I used to think I could expose my thoughts clearly, but sadly it appears that I can't.

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morriswalters wrote:I support her right to do as she see's fit. But I accept as a possibility that the political battle could be lost. The electorate has done stupid things before and will again. So I wouldn't depend on them if I was a woman. But as you will.

Wouldn't depend on them? I'm sort of at a loss for what exactly your argument is here. Firemen can and have not responded quick enough to the scene of a crime, so I shouldn't depend on them (i.e., firemen are superfluous when fighting fire? Fire extinguishers are also a bad thing, because they circumvent the consequence of having flammable stuff!). In short, if you can't depend on the electorate to do what you seem to say is the right thing, then you are still arguing in favor of a woman's ultimate right to decide the best course of action for the consequence of getting pregnant. If you want to argue that the state shouldn't pay for it or have any say in it, then that's fine, but you yourself would have already admitted that you disagree with Mississippi's legislation. Basically, from reading your rapidly goalpost shifting arguments the last few pages, I'm now sure what you're even suggesting at this point.

I'll try to clarify for you. You shouldn't count on the current availability of abortions. If Mississippi succeeds in passing the amendment and it somehow passed muster with the Supreme Court, how long do you think it would be until a similar law passed in other conservative states? The availability of abortions becomes more restricted each year. And Conservatives are not likely to give up easily. Which moves this discussion back to where I joined it, as a discussion of the politics. The so called right to abortion didn't happen legislatively, it was by fiat. Roe v. Wade. And could be taken away just as easily. So you put you faith in politicians, I'll educate my kids, make sure they have the tools if they are going to be active, and tell them to be picky. Oh yeah and I don't like people who argue to extremes, showing me pictures of dead babies, calling me a misogynist, and on and on and on.

Cliff Notes version(do they still use these?)
I support abortion
I don't like it because it pits two lifeforms against each other
If you don't break it you don't have to fix it
If you have to fix it don't break it again
If you count on old men in the statehouse you will probably be disappointed sooner or later

I think that covers it

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Belial » Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:46 am UTC

morriswalters wrote: I am pro choice, but I find abortion as a primary form of birth control distasteful.


Okay. I'm trying really hard not to be super sarcastic here.

This does not happen often. At all. It's a right wing strawman along the lines of the "welfare queen". If you factor out cases where refusal of contraception is being used as a form of relationship abuse, and cases where contraception is unavailable, the number dwindles to a percentage not worth mentioning. The fact that it gets brought up in every abortion debate is just a testament to how good people are at conjuring outrageous spectres.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Izawwlgood » Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:52 am UTC

morriswalters wrote:So you put you faith in politicians, I'll educate my kids, make sure they have the tools if they are going to be active, and tell them to be picky.

Quite the contrary; I have no faith in our politicians to do anything correctly, so would prefer they keep their legislation off it. I would educate my hypothetical children to the options available; if our state decides to make abortion illegal, one of the options I would have to tell my hypothetical children was available was a savings account with enough money in it to get them a plane ticket to somewhere that was more sensible and to procure an abortion.
You dodged the question; what exactly do you think the 'tools available' are for kids? Because you do realize that if needed/wanted, an abortion WILL be had, and better it be done safely than not... As has been pointed out to you.
morriswalters wrote:Cliff Notes version(do they still use these?)
I support abortion
I don't like it because it pits two lifeforms against each other
If you don't break it you don't have to fix it
If you have to fix it don't break it again
If you count on old men in the statehouse you will probably be disappointed sooner or later

I think that covers it

You have no idea how unclear this was.
A) You support abortion but are arguing against people receiving it because it negates the ramifications of consequence?
B) You ignore... you know... biology. Protip: look up imprinting, even wanted pregnancy is very much pitting two lifeforms against one another.
C) What isn't broken here?
D) Why is our current state of having abortion be legal disagreeable?
E) What do you think the average age of politicians is? Hint! It's not 'past senility'.

EDIT: I also don't get something: you claim we shouldn't count on the current system for abortions, because the current system in Mississippi is trying to make abortions a CRIMINAL offense. If you support abortion, how on Earth can you say something like 'just don't trust the system'? That's like finding out your state has made buying movie tickets a criminal offense, and saying that while you support going to the cinema, you don't think we should trust in our current politicians to let us...
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Garm » Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:15 am UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:B) You ignore... you know... biology. Protip: look up imprinting, even wanted pregnancy is very much pitting two lifeforms against one another.


This becomes extremely clear when the child is past due and it's 90+ degrees in late July.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Izawwlgood » Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:24 am UTC

I mean on a more basic level too; a fetus, and particularly the father of said fetus, are genetically interested in growing as large as possible as fast as possible, pulling as much resources as possible from the mother. A mother, and particularly, the mothers genetic contribution to the fetus, are genetically interested in regulating growth and development, so that a mother may have other offspring.
It's off topic, but I'm saying this because the 'abortion is bad because it pits organism against organism!' is about as ignorant as saying 'cloning is bad because genetic copies of life is unnatural!'
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby iChef » Thu Sep 15, 2011 5:45 am UTC

Sorry I'm jumping back in about a page late but there are a few things I would like to clarify. First, sex is not something a man does to a woman, it is something two people do together. I'm from an unusual situation, but my father took care of my brother and myself when our mom left when we were very young, he raised us as a single parent until I was 18. Both partners are responsible for their actions. Either one copping out is just as disgusting as the other.Consequences are not the same as punishments. If two people have sex they don't deserve to have a kid, but it is something that might happen.

Doing something immoral is something we all do. I am never going to say someone who has an abortion is getting a express ticket to hell, but I am going to encourage anyone who is willing to talk about it to choose another option. Sex is a serious and dangerous thing. It can bring us a lot of happiness and it can bring heartbreak. Not just pregnancy but diseases, and failed relationships. I feel that many people don't give such a powerful act the respect it deserves. I am not claiming to be pious, in fact as I've touched on in other threads I spent many years being everything but. In the years since abstaining from sex has brought me more happiness and peace of mind than all the sex I'd had up until that point. The wait until marriage line won't get anyone anywhere in this day and age, but I feel that sex isn't given the respect it deserves. Much like drugs, alcohol, even food, and many other things that bring us great joy when used properly, but will destroy us when used irresponsibly.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby omgryebread » Thu Sep 15, 2011 6:25 am UTC

iChef wrote:Sorry I'm jumping back in about a page late but there are a few things I would like to clarify. First, sex is not something a man does to a woman, it is something two people do together. I'm from an unusual situation, but my father took care of my brother and myself when our mom left when we were very young, he raised us as a single parent until I was 18. Both partners are responsible for their actions. Either one copping out is just as disgusting as the other.Consequences are not the same as punishments. If two people have sex they don't deserve to have a kid, but it is something that might happen.
Funny that you talk about consequences for both partners, but only one partner has to carry around a living organism that hijacks their immune system, a lot of the food they eat, greatly alters the shape of their body, their internal chemistry, and oh, can kill them. I guess guys have to pay child support. Unless they get away with it, cause that's really easy.

Sex is a serious and dangerous thing. It can bring us a lot of happiness and it can bring heartbreak. Not just pregnancy but diseases, and failed relationships. I feel that many people don't give such a powerful act the respect it deserves. I am not claiming to be pious, in fact as I've touched on in other threads I spent many years being everything but. In the years since abstaining from sex has brought me more happiness and peace of mind than all the sex I'd had up until that point. The wait until marriage line won't get anyone anywhere in this day and age, but I feel that sex isn't given the respect it deserves. Much like drugs, alcohol, even food, and many other things that bring us great joy when used properly, but will destroy us when used irresponsibly.
As nicely as I can put it: Fuck that. I'm glad abstaining has worked for you, but maybe your personal experience doesn't apply to everyone? Sex is fun! Sex is nice! Right now, I like sex with mostly one person. Before that, I liked sex with lots of people! I liked sex with my boyfriend, then sex with another guy! I liked sex with guys I've known since before I could talk, and girls who last name I never learned (and vice versa.) It was fun! It brought drama, sure. So did playing Pokemon during lunch in middle school, but I don't see anyone clamoring about how Pokemon isn't given the respect it deserves (okay, it's not, but that's pretty OT.) Fuck this idea that sex should be conducted according to this arcane rules.


(also, I have to say it: I'd be more inclined to wait for marriage if the "wait for marriage" crowd didn't keep trying to keep it so I can't get married.)
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Elvish Pillager » Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:38 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:I support abortion
I don't like it because it pits two lifeforms against each other

So you support eating, but you don't like it? :|
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby DSenette » Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:51 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:
podbaydoor wrote:The thing is, every instance of anti-abortion activism I can recall recently does not also include efforts to provide parents for the people who don't want children. There is nothing about reforming Social Services (or giving it more money) or reforming the adoption process, or aid to women who can't afford children, or providing health care to women who wouldn't survive children. Your personal act of altruism has nothing to do with what's being pushed on a political level.

Also, you can't be impregnated.

I quite agree. But I not sure there is much that could be done that hasn't been done. Children are throwaways, and always have been. I've seen to much out my own front door not to believe that. Speaking in a general fashion I believe that acting is better than reacting. I also recognize that sometimes it isn't possible. What I did wasn't altruism, I accepted the kids because they were a part of her. As to your last I give thanks on a daily base to the sun God.

SOME people treat children as throwaway, not everyone does, and most people who CHOOSE to have abortions are actually doing the best thing for that fetus. it's completely impossible to negatively impact someone's life if they never have one. it's MUCH better to not have a child, than to have an unwanted child, or to have a child that cannot be adequately cared for.

Dark Avorian wrote:.

Furthermore, another argument commonly used is that an unwanted baby raised in bad circumstances will live a horrible life. Quick point: how many people would advocate the killing of third world children in horrible circumstances to free them? I apologize for the hyperbole, but I only use it, because to a person who believes the life has already begun, those are perfectly morally equivalent. Why is it so unreasonable to think a life lived poor and miserable is better than no life at all?

but here's the great thing about this! we don't have to come up with some retarded plan for killing children who have already been born, we can prevent them from ever being born into those situations in the first place.

people in 3rd world countries don't have access to the things that would allow them to choose NOT to have kids in their situation. in virtually all cases, having kids in abject poverty hurts everyone. each new child in any given family drains that many more resources from an already resourceless family, puts that much more burden on the family's economy and the local impoverished area's economy, etc... etc... etc... but, thanks to certain circumstances (including anti-abortion/anti-sex ed groups) these people don't have access to the tools required to prevent unwanted pregnancy.

such as:
general sex ed
contraception
abortion
rape prevention
any type of education whatsoever

iChef wrote:Sorry I'm jumping back in about a page late but there are a few things I would like to clarify. First, sex is not something a man does to a woman, it is something two people do together. I'm from an unusual situation, but my father took care of my brother and myself when our mom left when we were very young, he raised us as a single parent until I was 18. Both partners are responsible for their actions. Either one copping out is just as disgusting as the other.Consequences are not the same as punishments. If two people have sex they don't deserve to have a kid, but it is something that might happen.

Doing something immoral is something we all do. I am never going to say someone who has an abortion is getting a express ticket to hell, but I am going to encourage anyone who is willing to talk about it to choose another option. Sex is a serious and dangerous thing. It can bring us a lot of happiness and it can bring heartbreak. Not just pregnancy but diseases, and failed relationships. I feel that many people don't give such a powerful act the respect it deserves. I am not claiming to be pious, in fact as I've touched on in other threads I spent many years being everything but. In the years since abstaining from sex has brought me more happiness and peace of mind than all the sex I'd had up until that point. The wait until marriage line won't get anyone anywhere in this day and age, but I feel that sex isn't given the respect it deserves. Much like drugs, alcohol, even food, and many other things that bring us great joy when used properly, but will destroy us when used irresponsibly.

this is the deal that everyone keeps saying though. "having a child" is not a consequence of sex. becoming pregnant CAN be a consequence of sex.

falling off a bike and cracking your skull is a possible consequence of riding a bike. there are several ways to mitigate that consequence, one of them is to never ride a bike (abstinence), another is to never fall off the bike (contraception) , and another is to wear a helmet (abortion).

abortion as a legal and medically accepted method of mitigating a possible consequence of sex. just like medication to treat STDs is a method of mitigating a possible consequence of sex, and wearing condoms, and taking the pill, or not putting your doodad in someone's hoooha.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby PeteP » Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:03 pm UTC

DSenette wrote:falling off a bike and cracking your skull is a possible consequence of riding a bike. there are several ways to mitigate that consequence, one of them is to never ride a bike (abstinence), another is to never fall off the bike (contraception) , and another is to wear a helmet (abortion).

A helmet lessens the impact and it's a preventive measure wouldn't helmet= contraception fit better because you use it to lessen the chance of cracking you skull. Whereas abortion is more akin to letting doctors treat you to prevent long term effects from you injuries (like death if they are severe enough).

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby DSenette » Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:14 pm UTC

PeteP wrote:
DSenette wrote:falling off a bike and cracking your skull is a possible consequence of riding a bike. there are several ways to mitigate that consequence, one of them is to never ride a bike (abstinence), another is to never fall off the bike (contraception) , and another is to wear a helmet (abortion).

A helmet lessens the impact and it's a preventive measure wouldn't helmet= contraception fit better because you use it to lessen the chance of cracking you skull. Whereas abortion is more akin to letting doctors treat you to prevent long term effects from you injuries (like death if they are severe enough).

it's not a perfect analogy.

falling off the bike is the consequence, not the injury...the injury is a possible outcome of the consequence
getting pregnant is the consequence of having sex (possibly) having a baby is a possible outcome of the consequence

so,
never riding the bike = never having sex = not engaging in activity that has consequences
never falling off the bike = not getting pregnant = participating in the activity, but preventing the consequence (in the real world this is not 100% possible. condoms break, people fall off of bikes...however in both scenarios you can do a lot to help prevent the consequences)
wearing a helmet = not having a baby = preventing a possible outcome of a consequence
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Eowiel » Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:35 pm UTC

DSenette wrote:

SOME people treat children as throwaway, not everyone does, and most people who CHOOSE to have abortions are actually doing the best thing for that fetus. it's completely impossible to negatively impact someone's life if they never have one. it's MUCH better to not have a child, than to have an unwanted child, or to have a child that cannot be adequately cared for.


I find this quite a bold statement. I'm not against abortion but saying that abortions are mostly done in the best interest of the fetus is a bridge too far in my opinion. Generally, I don't think that people that once were unwanted children or children that didn't receive adequate care rather wouldn't have been born at all.

Abortions are mostly done because of the negative consequences on the parents and when fetuses are not considered persons, that's an acceptable practice. So the question should always be whether or not the fetus is more or less of a person than someone who is born. Once one comes to the conclusion that a fetus is a person and thus should have the same rights, I find it wrong to say abortions are still acceptable because it's better for the fetus, because in most cases, it's not.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Izawwlgood » Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:43 pm UTC

It is a bold statement, but it does illustrate the point well that what is best for the fetus can also coincide with what is best for the mother. Leaving a child as a ward of the state is NOT a very considerate option to most children, and raising a child in a situation where you cannot provide for it is not a good decision for child or parent. So, yes, indeed, aborting a fetus is often the responsible thing to do for the fetus. Trying to mince hairs over what action is for the child vs what action is for the mother is rather missing the point of the situation.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Heisenberg » Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:49 pm UTC

Whimsical Eloquence wrote:Are you at all familiar with the famous violinist thought experiment? We'd do the same were it a proper person.

That particular analogy fails to represent the situation in two important ways. The first of which I already discussed: There is no way to simply disconnect the violinist, you must instead stab him to death. If women could cross their fingers and isolate the fetus, that would be representative, but they can't, they have to pay a guy in a white coat to get up in there and kill it.

The second is why we keep coming back to responsibility and consequences. The violinist experiment involves being kidnapped and forced to be hooked up to the violinist, which while applicable to a rape scenario, does not represent the fact that pregnancy is a regular consequence of consensual sex. The analogy would be improved by mentioning that you'd been firing your gun into the air and accidentally winged the violinist, and are the only one who can save him. Hurting someone is a predictable, if not desirable, consequence of firing a gun wildly, just as pregnancy is a predictable consequence of having sex.

So when pro-choice advocates put forth scenarios involving evil fetuses sneaking into the uteruses of unsuspecting women, you're going to see a pro-life advocate point out that if the woman engaged in consensual sex, she shouldn't be caught totally unawares. This doesn't mean that person is anti-sex or doesn't enjoy sex very much, it simply means that this person is aware of the fact that choosing to have sex sometimes results in pregnancy.

And then, rather than acknowledge that point and modify the imperfect analogy, it seems the common thing to do is to then sling slurs and epithets at the individual who was simply trying to correct the gaping hole in your logic.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby DSenette » Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:57 pm UTC

Eowiel wrote:
DSenette wrote:

SOME people treat children as throwaway, not everyone does, and most people who CHOOSE to have abortions are actually doing the best thing for that fetus. it's completely impossible to negatively impact someone's life if they never have one. it's MUCH better to not have a child, than to have an unwanted child, or to have a child that cannot be adequately cared for.


I find this quite a bold statement. I'm not against abortion but saying that abortions are mostly done in the best interest of the fetus is a bridge too far in my opinion. Generally, I don't think that people that once were unwanted children or children that didn't receive adequate care rather wouldn't have been born at all.

Abortions are mostly done because of the negative consequences on the parents and when fetuses are not considered persons, that's an acceptable practice. So the question should always be whether or not the fetus is more or less of a person than someone who is born. Once one comes to the conclusion that a fetus is a person and thus should have the same rights, I find it wrong to say abortions are still acceptable because it's better for the fetus, because in most cases, it's not.

i didn't say most people who choose to have abortions are doing it in the interest of the fetus. i said they are doing the best thing for that fetus.

bringing an unwanted child into an unsustainable situation is at best stupid, and at worst cruel. is it possible to do it and end up with a great kid? fuck yes it is. but that takes work, preparation and a fuckload of luck.

if you're going to EVEN REMOTELY suggest that ANY woman, ever, should be required to bring any pregnancy to full term against her wishes, then you better damned well have taken care of the ancillary functions and responsibilities of having a baby. you better have funding for prenatal treatment, monthly doctor's visits, ultrasounds, blood work, actual delivery costs, coverage for possible complications, possible hospitalization for mother and infant, pre and postpartum counseling and psychological therapy for both mother and child, possible long term care for the mother (giving birth often isn't a transient effect....there can/are LONG term medical rammifications), etc... etc... etc...

you can't just say "welp, you did the dirty, now you need to lay in the bed you fucked in"

edit: also, you should be paying the woman's rent/mortgage, paying for lost wages, probably compensation for mental anguish and hardship
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Belial » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:06 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:That particular analogy fails to represent the situation in two important ways. The first of which I already discussed: There is no way to simply disconnect the violinist, you must instead stab him to death. If women could cross their fingers and isolate the fetus, that would be representative, but they can't, they have to pay a guy in a white coat to get up in there and kill it.


You could surgically obliterate and disconnect the placenta. It would be even more dangerous for the mother, much more difficult, and would result in a fetus that is just as dead though, so why?

The violinist experiment involves being kidnapped and forced to be hooked up to the violinist, which while applicable to a rape scenario, does not represent the fact that pregnancy is a regular consequence of consensual sex.


Among the other problems with this, I'd like you to return to "Rape exceptions, existence of (outside imagination-land)"
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Heisenberg » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:15 pm UTC

Belial wrote:You could surgically obliterate and disconnect the placenta. It would be even more dangerous for the mother, much more difficult, and would result in a fetus that is just as dead though, so why?
Why would you disconnect the IV going to the violinist, rather than stabbing him in the neck? Because the ends don't justify the means, and while one action is an assertion of one's bodily autonomy, the other is an attack on someone's life.
Belial wrote:Among the other problems with this, I'd like you to return to "Rape exceptions, existence of (outside imagination-land)"
That's a valid practical implementation issue that merits discussion and certainly appears to have no good solutions right now, but the violinist thought experiment is pretty firmly in imagination-land.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:22 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:
Belial wrote:You could surgically obliterate and disconnect the placenta. It would be even more dangerous for the mother, much more difficult, and would result in a fetus that is just as dead though, so why?


Why would you disconnect the IV going to the violinist, rather than stabbing him in the neck? Because the ends don't justify the means, and while one action is an assertion of one's bodily autonomy, the other is an attack on someone's life.


If for some reason you could not disconnect the IV without stabbing the violinist, you would be within your rights to stab him. He has no right to make demands on your body, and your are entitled to resist, forcefully if necessary.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Eowiel » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:25 pm UTC

DSenette wrote:
bringing an unwanted child into an unsustainable situation is at best stupid, and at worst cruel. is it possible to do it and end up with a great kid? fuck yes it is. but that takes work, preparation and a fuckload of luck.

if you're going to EVEN REMOTELY suggest that ANY woman, ever, should be required to bring any pregnancy to full term against her wishes, then you better damned well have taken care of the ancillary functions and responsibilities of having a baby. you better have funding for prenatal treatment, monthly doctor's visits, ultrasounds, blood work, actual delivery costs, coverage for possible complications, possible hospitalization for mother and infant, pre and postpartum counseling and psychological therapy for both mother and child, possible long term care for the mother (giving birth often isn't a transient effect....there can/are LONG term medical rammifications), etc... etc... etc...

you can't just say "welp, you did the dirty, now you need to lay in the bed you fucked in"


Most people that grew up as unwanted children or in families that couldn't fully support them are not unhappy to the point where they actually wish they wouldn't have been born. You're implying that in general, children growing up in those conditions will only exceptionally have a life worth living, while this is not true I think. They will probably almost all have issues, they won't be as succesful in life as other people, but most of them won't become complete wrecks either. Most will be quite happy to be alive.

That said I'm not against abortions either, but not on the grounds that it's in the best interest of a fetus not to be born but on the ground that a fetus is not a person. I understand that that drawing the line at birth is arbitrary, but wherever the line between being a person and not being a person is going to be drawn, it's always going to be a more or less hypocrital distinction and birth seems like the most practical point to draw the line (which of course doesn't hold much weight ethically). Personally I just hope I'm never going to be in a situation where I will have to make this sort of decision ever.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Elvish Pillager » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:26 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:Why would you disconnect the IV going to the violinist, rather than stabbing him in the neck? Because the ends don't justify the means, and while one action is an assertion of one's bodily autonomy, the other is an attack on someone's life.

No, you do it because just disconnecting it is easier. Even if you stab the violinist in the neck, you still have to disconnect the IV.

Do you really want to stretch the analogy until it works? Fine: Instead of just hooking up the IV, the violinist's benefactors caused the violinist to grow a giant tick head and induced the tick head to latch onto your skin. And then let's assume that the tick head lets go if you kill the violinist directly. So if you want to get rid of the violinist, you have two options: You can go to elaborate surgical procedures to pull out the tick head while it's still alive, at which point the violinist will die anyway; or you can just kill the violinist, which would be a lot less of an ordeal for both yourself AND the violinist.

My logical argument here is that if the first operation is acceptable, then the second operation must also be acceptable, because the outcome of the second option is superior for all participants.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby omgryebread » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:31 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:Why would you disconnect the IV going to the violinist, rather than stabbing him in the neck? Because the ends don't justify the means, and while one action is an assertion of one's bodily autonomy, the other is an attack on someone's life.
Why I hate deontology. From the viewpoint of the victim, Action A and Action B are identical. The violinist cannot tell the difference between removing his IV and stabbing him, just as the fetus cannot tell the difference between removing support and being aborted. Your bizarre deontological view requires a third party aware of the action, taking particular exception to one action and not the other, and it requires giving weight to the opinion of this third party, for reasons unknown.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby PeteP » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:33 pm UTC

There is another scenario from Thomson with People Seeds. Which has the "risked the situation" component. On the other hand the seeds grow on the carpet and isn't directly connected to the human (I guess you could replace it with some kind of parasite which grows on the woman and only exists in certain areas) and the scenario is purely fictional. (The violinist isn't realistic either but at least it only contains humands and not fictional seeds.)

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby DSenette » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:40 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:
Belial wrote:You could surgically obliterate and disconnect the placenta. It would be even more dangerous for the mother, much more difficult, and would result in a fetus that is just as dead though, so why?
Why would you disconnect the IV going to the violinist, rather than stabbing him in the neck? Because the ends don't justify the means, and while one action is an assertion of one's bodily autonomy, the other is an attack on someone's life.
if the end result is exactly the same, then they two options are morally equivalent. i don't see what the problem with stabbing the guy in the neck is. if you disconnect him from the IV he's going to die (probably slowly), there are 100% no chances of him surviving if disconnected from you. if you stab him in the brain, there is 100% no chances of him surviving because you stabbed him in the brain. it makes more sense to take the least "painful" route (or the one that results in the least amount of suffering*). in the case of the violinist, stabbing him in the neck (once you decide you don't want him connected) would be the most humane solution. same with an abortion, it's the cleanest, most humane solution that offers the least complications for the mother.

*defining suffering in a collection of cells that may or may not be considered human is not exactly easy so do with the concept what you will.


Eowiel wrote:
DSenette wrote:
bringing an unwanted child into an unsustainable situation is at best stupid, and at worst cruel. is it possible to do it and end up with a great kid? fuck yes it is. but that takes work, preparation and a fuckload of luck.

if you're going to EVEN REMOTELY suggest that ANY woman, ever, should be required to bring any pregnancy to full term against her wishes, then you better damned well have taken care of the ancillary functions and responsibilities of having a baby. you better have funding for prenatal treatment, monthly doctor's visits, ultrasounds, blood work, actual delivery costs, coverage for possible complications, possible hospitalization for mother and infant, pre and postpartum counseling and psychological therapy for both mother and child, possible long term care for the mother (giving birth often isn't a transient effect....there can/are LONG term medical rammifications), etc... etc... etc...

you can't just say "welp, you did the dirty, now you need to lay in the bed you fucked in"


Most people that grew up as unwanted children or in families that couldn't fully support them are not unhappy to the point where they actually wish they wouldn't have been born. You're implying that in general, children growing up in those conditions will only exceptionally have a life worth living, while this is not true I think. They will probably almost all have issues, they won't be as succesful in life as other people, but most of them won't become complete wrecks either. Most will be quite happy to be alive.
it has nothing to do with the potential possibility of an unwanted child becoming a functioning happy adult.

"wanted" in my scenario is in reference to a child being born (not specifically to a child that has been born). so an unwanted child is a child that has been conceived by a mother who has absolutely no desire to carry this child to term/birth. anything outside of that would be an unplanned child. as soon as someone has decided to birth a child instead of not birth a child, then the birth of that child is wanted, no matter what happens after the birth.

being born into less than ideal scenarios < not being born into less than ideal scenarios

the distance in that equation from ideal is relative and variable and inconsequential. it is always better to not be in a less than ideal scenario, ergo, not being put in that scenario is always better than being put into that scenario.


does that mean that if you find yourself in a less than ideal scenario that you should wish you were never born? no, it doesn't. and if someone chooses to have a child in a less than ideal scenario, that's ok, but they have to know that they've done that intentionally and work to make it a less than ideal scenario. however, the moment a woman decides on her own to carry a child to term and deliver it, then the child is "wanted" just not "desired" or "planned". even if the woman doesn't want to keep the child, she wanted it to be born (otherwise, you know, she had options). which makes this child MUCH different than a child ho was unwanted (i.e. the mother did not desire it to be born, but was forced into that situation)

you're talking about a different class of person. you're talking about either the unplanned or the underprovided. children who are born into scenarios where they were wanted but couldn't be provided for, or the children who were unplanned but ultimately not unwanted can surely grow up to be fine.

but try to imagine a child that was truly unwanted, as in, if given the proper choice the child would never have been born but the mother was forced against her will (either actually forced, or forced because of an abortion being illegal) and compare that life to someone who was at the very least, "wanted to be born"

Eowiel wrote:That said I'm not against abortions either, but not on the grounds that it's in the best interest of a fetus not to be born but on the ground that a fetus is not a person. I understand that that drawing the line at birth is arbitrary, but wherever the line between being a person and not being a person is going to be drawn, it's always going to be a more or less hypocrital distinction and birth seems like the most practical point to draw the line (which of course doesn't hold much weight ethically). Personally I just hope I'm never going to be in a situation where I will have to make this sort of decision ever.
it has nothing to do with the interests of the fetus. it has everything to do with the interests of the woman. that the outcome (i.e. child not born into a less than ideal situation) is better than the alternative (child being born into less than ideal situation) is a side effect of the actions of the woman, not a consideration for them.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby morriswalters » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:45 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
morriswalters wrote:So you put you faith in politicians, I'll educate my kids, make sure they have the tools if they are going to be active, and tell them to be picky.

Quite the contrary; I have no faith in our politicians to do anything correctly, so would prefer they keep their legislation off it. I would educate my hypothetical children to the options available; if our state decides to make abortion illegal, one of the options I would have to tell my hypothetical children was available was a savings account with enough money in it to get them a plane ticket to somewhere that was more sensible and to procure an abortion.
You dodged the question; what exactly do you think the 'tools available' are for kids? Because you do realize that if needed/wanted, an abortion WILL be had, and better it be done safely than not... As has been pointed out to you.



morriswalters wrote:Cliff Notes version(do they still use these?)
I support abortion
I don't like it because it pits two lifeforms against each other
If you don't break it you don't have to fix it
If you have to fix it don't break it again
If you count on old men in the statehouse you will probably be disappointed sooner or later

I think that covers it

You have no idea how unclear this was.
A) You support abortion but are arguing against people receiving it because it negates the ramifications of consequence?
B) You ignore... you know... biology. Protip: look up imprinting, even wanted pregnancy is very much pitting two lifeforms against one another.
C) What isn't broken here?
D) Why is our current state of having abortion be legal disagreeable?
E) What do you think the average age of politicians is? Hint! It's not 'past senility'.

EDIT: I also don't get something: you claim we shouldn't count on the current system for abortions, because the current system in Mississippi is trying to make abortions a CRIMINAL offense. If you support abortion, how on Earth can you say something like 'just don't trust the system'? That's like finding out your state has made buying movie tickets a criminal offense, and saying that while you support going to the cinema, you don't think we should trust in our current politicians to let us...


This is actually easy. For a girl a talk with her Mother with a candid discussion of the risks and rewards of sex. A trip to the Doctor to prescribe Birth Control pills as well as a trip to the store to purchase condoms. If all that fails, let her make up her mind about how to proceed, as well as testing for std's. As for a boy talk to him about the risks and rewards of sex, as well as making him aware of the risks to the other party. Provide him with condoms and encourage him to use them. For some reason you seem to think I wouldn't encourage my girl child to have an abortion. My point is that an abortion should be a last resort.

It works something like this. I don't like abortion because, you, or for that matter, anyone else, can't give me a satisfactory answer to the question of, when is the emerging organism human? I suspect I understand the underlying biology as well as you. But I'll clarify it this way. At some point that fertilized egg, will reach maturity if the underlying process works as natural selection says it should, then the result will be a child with all the "rights" we hold dear. Their is no mutually agreed upon point were that happens. If there was such a point that a majority could agree on we wouldn't be having this discussion. I would be happy if women could sort this out without my input at all. But hopefully you understand that that isn't going to happen. I'm stuck with it and I don't like. Particularly when I'm told I don't understand because I don't have a uterus or that I'm a sexist or women hater. I support the mothers ability to have an abortion since I believe, up to a certain point, her interests heavily outweigh the childs. I prefer birth control over abortion because modern methods are safe and relatively reliable. Of the 800,000 or so abortions performed in 2000 you have a hard time convincing me that a most were due to failure of their birth control. I'll retract that if you can show me otherwise. Given that then I say, man(or women) up and take care of business. I would guess that most women would also prefer birth control over abortion since abortion carries a non zero chance of mortality and side effects. I assume having once undergone the procedure they would be more cautious to prevent having to do it a second time. Since ultimately access to abortion is under attack politically and may well taken away from a woman, I recommend that she rely on birth control and her own resources. Those non senile old men aren't really interested in anything other than their reelection, and the electorate is hostile to unlimited abortion on demand. I suppose, that to me, it appears that you are a little naive. I trust no one and no thing that I don't understand, have no personal knowledge of, or can't totally control. I vote in every election because I believe in the process. But I understand that doesn't mean that everything that I hold important will be politically possible. So I live like a true Libertarian, I follow the law when it suits me and ignore if it doesn't. I'll take advantage of it but I don't depend on it unless their is no other choice.

On the idea of consequences. There seems to be a disconnect from reality here. Responsibility means doing what you should do to encourage a outcome that is advantageous for you(this is the selfish version). Pregnancy is a consequence. It can certainly be mitigated, but tanstaafl(there ain't no such thing as a free lunch). I point out sexual intercourse as a disease vector, a really good one. It doesn't care if you have a uterus.

I support abortion
I don't like it because it pits two lifeforms against each other(self evident)
If you don't break it you don't have to fix it(if you take care with BC you won't need an abortion, increase the odds by using two or more.)
If you have to fix it don't break it again(having had one take more care so you don't have to do it again.)
If you count on old men in the statehouse you will probably be disappointed sooner or later(I didn't vote for Bush but I had to live with his policies, if I lived in Mississippi and I thought I might need abortion services I would watch the outcome of the election carefully and be prepared to protect my interests if the electorate didn't.)

I can't make it any clearer than this, I'm done.(I hope)

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Belial » Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:46 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:
Belial wrote:Among the other problems with this, I'd like you to return to "Rape exceptions, existence of (outside imagination-land)"
That's a valid practical implementation issue that merits discussion and certainly appears to have no good solutions right now, but the violinist thought experiment is pretty firmly in imagination-land.


It's a tool for understanding a real situation, though, and in the real situation people are justifying bans that would affect rape victims too (because there's no effective ban that wouldn't). So pretending that this analogy is only about consensual violinist-fusion is incorrect. And pretending that you could usefully separate the consensual from the nonconesual cases is as well.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Heisenberg » Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:14 pm UTC

DSenette wrote:if the end result is exactly the same, then they two options are morally equivalent.
Elvish Pillager wrote:My logical argument here is that if the first operation is acceptable, then the second operation must also be acceptable, because the outcome of the second option is superior for all participants.

That's a philosophical argument, and you need Consequentialism and probably the Greatest Happiness Principle to make that fly.

And there's the breakdown: A consequentialist sees nothing wrong with stabbing the violinist, while a deontologist would refuse to stab the violinist (assuming an ethical system which disallows stabbing) but may not have a problem simply closing the connection.
Belial wrote:It's a tool for understanding a real situation, though, and in the real situation people are justifying bans that would affect rape victims too (because there's no effective ban that wouldn't). So pretending that this analogy is only about consensual violinist-fusion is incorrect. And pretending that you could usefully separate the consensual from the nonconesual cases is as well.
This depends on your definition of 'useful' and 'effective' as well. Can we effectively separate people who absolutely need morphine, or medical marijuana from those who are just seeking a high? It's certainly correct to say that there's no perfect solution, but that doesn't mean that a reasonable legal provision can't be reached. If you're ok with 10% of morphine going to addicts, while 90% goes to legitimate patients, is that acceptable? To a rules-oriented individual, the numbers may not even matter, so long as the principle (morphine/abortion are illegal) is intact. Simply saying that a rape exception would be ineffective, due to the fact that it would be easy for non-victims to utilize, does not necessarily mean that the whole system should be thrown out.

Of course, in reality, I don't think that this personhood amendment would give any exception for rape (except maybe as mentioned before Castle Doctrine, but arguing that that's only for non-consensual sex pregnancies would be walking a pretty fine line), but would most likely still allow lifesaving abortions.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby omgryebread » Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:26 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:
DSenette wrote:if the end result is exactly the same, then they two options are morally equivalent.
Elvish Pillager wrote:My logical argument here is that if the first operation is acceptable, then the second operation must also be acceptable, because the outcome of the second option is superior for all participants.

That's a philosophical argument, and you need Consequentialism and probably the Greatest Happiness Principle to make that fly.

And there's the breakdown: A consequentialist sees nothing wrong with stabbing the violinist, while a deontologist would refuse to stab the violinist (assuming an ethical system which disallows stabbing) but may not have a problem simply closing the connection.[quote]Woah, back up. You can't just say "yeah but a deonotologist would say that's wrong!!" You have to show why you have a deontological rule (stabbing is bad because God said so; stabbing is bad because we all agree killing is bad and stabbing is always intent to kill, etc) You then either have to be super-Kantian and accept no exceptions (leading to the Nazi at the door problem with Kantian deontology) or you have to explain your exceptions and say why one is okay and not the other. Saying there's a deontological objection is not a hand-wave that lets you call something immoral just because you feel that way.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:48 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:It works something like this. I don't like abortion because, you, or for that matter, anyone else, can't give me a satisfactory answer to the question of, when is the emerging organism human? I suspect I understand the underlying biology as well as you. But I'll clarify it this way. At some point that fertilized egg, will reach maturity if the underlying process works as natural selection says it should, then the result will be a child with all the "rights" we hold dear. Their is no mutually agreed upon point were that happens. If there was such a point that a majority could agree on we wouldn't be having this discussion. I would be happy if women could sort this out without my input at all. But hopefully you understand that that isn't going to happen. I'm stuck with it and I don't like. Particularly when I'm told I don't understand because I don't have a uterus or that I'm a sexist or women hater. I support the mothers ability to have an abortion since I believe, up to a certain point, her interests heavily outweigh the childs. I prefer birth control over abortion because modern methods are safe and relatively reliable. Of the 800,000 or so abortions performed in 2000 you have a hard time convincing me that a most were due to failure of their birth control.


Sure, let's crunch some numbers. The average failure rate of the pill is 0.3% per year assuming perfect usage. For a condom, it's 2% assuming perfect usage. For typical usage, they're 8% and 15% respectively. A "failure" in this case results in pregnancy. There are 11.6 million women who currently use the pill (p 19). Assuming perfect usage and regular sexual activity, 34800 will nonetheless get pregnant. Assuming typical usage and regular sexual activity, we're already up to 880,000. 6.7 million use male condoms (but not both), giving us 134,000 pregnancies for perfect usage or 1 million for typical usage. In other words, based on typical usage statistics, women using either the pill or the male condom (30% of all women aged 15-44), we're conceivably already up to almost 2 million pregnancies from contraceptive failure alone. This is an upper limit, to be sure, but it is not wholly unreasonable to expect that a significant number of unwanted pregnancies would be due to contraceptive failure. Even assuming "perfect usage" conditions, we still could end up with almost 200,000 unwanted pregnancies.

According to page 77 of the same report, about 23% of all women have been raped at least once...

[edit]One more calculation. Assuming a woman is fertile between the ages of 15-44 and keeping all other things equal: A woman using the pill with perfect use has a 10% chance of at least one unwanted pregnancy during her lifetime. For perfect condom, it's 45%. For typical usage, 99.1% and 99.991%, respectively. If anything, it's a wonder we don't have more pregnancies due to contraceptive failure.
Last edited by LaserGuy on Thu Sep 15, 2011 5:18 pm UTC, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Jessica » Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:55 pm UTC

I'd like to use an analogy to illustrate the problems with analogies, but unfortunately it wouldn't be accurate enough to describe all the real world problems with illustrating problems with analogies.
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Belial » Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:57 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:If there was such a point that a majority could agree on we wouldn't be having this discussion. I would be happy if women could sort this out without my input at all. But hopefully you understand that that isn't going to happen.


These points are contradictory. If you agree that it's impossible to determine, and that no one will ever agree on it, why can't individual women sort it without your input? How is your input any more valuable than their own? What does it add, exactly, to the conversation?

That is, if it's a question with no right answer as you seem to think, how are two people standing around going "Iunno!" better than one?

And if there's only going to be one, do you think it should be you or the person potentially undergoing the procedure?
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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Jahoclave » Thu Sep 15, 2011 5:06 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:If there was such a point that a majority could agree on we wouldn't be having this discussion. I would be happy if women could sort this out without my input at all. But hopefully you understand that that isn't going to happen.


Excuse me, but as a male I find it offensive to assume that I have some brilliant insight into how women should be running their lives. I do not have a vagina and do not have a wish to control one. For you to put me in a position to control the lives of others like this is putting me in a place I am uncomfortable with and you should be ashamed of that. However correct your presumptions that I am a brilliant person and better than most everybody else, I would take it as a kindness if you would not put me in such a position without my permission. It is for me to decide whose lives I decide I should have the ultimate say in and it is up to them to be a human being and tell me to fuck off.

So, with that in mind. Fuck off, women did not ask for your input.

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby Soralin » Thu Sep 15, 2011 5:20 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:It works something like this. I don't like abortion because, you, or for that matter, anyone else, can't give me a satisfactory answer to the question of, when is the emerging organism human? I suspect I understand the underlying biology as well as you. But I'll clarify it this way. At some point that fertilized egg, will reach maturity if the underlying process works as natural selection says it should, then the result will be a child with all the "rights" we hold dear. Their is no mutually agreed upon point were that happens. If there was such a point that a majority could agree on we wouldn't be having this discussion.

It's human starting about 7 million years back, (or wherever your dividing line for humans is, I used the Homo/Australopithecus division there). I mean, an embryo is human, but then the sperm and egg that contributed their genetics to it were also human, meaning it was human before that, and the cells that those came from were human, all the way back to the sperm and eggs of their parents, and so on and so forth. If you had said life, the answer would be about 4 billion years back, an unbroken chain the entire way.

If instead, you meant a mind, or a person, that's different. At the very least, you can't have a mind without a brain, and a functioning brain at that. For coherent activity in the brain, you'd have to wait for at least 6-7 months of development to get the beginnings of coherent activity in the brain. And if you want a mind that is more intelligent/conscious/self-aware than a chicken, you'd have to wait at least some months after birth to get that.

Also, mutual/majority agreement is not the proper criteria. Science is not decided by majority, it's decided by evidence.

And since you apparently missed the first time I said it: here

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Re: Mississippi's Personhood Amendment

Postby morriswalters » Thu Sep 15, 2011 5:57 pm UTC

I'm happy that everybody is mad.
Soralin wrote:Also, mutual/majority agreement is not the proper criteria. Science is not decided by majority, it's decided by evidence.
This is not a science problem, this is a political problem. The OP is about a Constitutional amendment in Mississippi.

Jahoclave wrote:So, with that in mind. Fuck off, women did not ask for your input.
How very adult. I'd like to be free of it to. However if the issue arises in my state and I don't participate and if others like me don't participate abortion will be banned here soon.
Belial wrote:
morriswalters wrote:If there was such a point that a majority could agree on we wouldn't be having this discussion. I would be happy if women could sort this out without my input at all. But hopefully you understand that that isn't going to happen.


These points are contradictory. If you agree that it's impossible to determine, and that no one will ever agree on it, why can't individual women sort it without your input? How is your input any more valuable than their own? What does it add, exactly, to the conversation?

That is, if it's a question with no right answer as you seem to think, how are two people standing around going "Iunno!" better than one?

And if there's only going to be one, do you think it should be you or the person potentially undergoing the procedure?

This very response shows why. Contrary to the popular opinion around here not everyone agrees with you. Women need supporters to make sure they keep the rights they have. The difference between me and people who oppose reproductive freedom for women is I that support them in spite of my reservations. It's also naive to believe that only women have a say about abortion. If the want exclusive freedom from any male participation other than as sperm donor are they prepared to assume the complete financial burden? Good luck with that. Ethically speaking, I find protecting the unborn similar to protecting other children. I'm not stupid or arrogant enough to believe that a babies life is more valuable than the mothers, neither do I believe that it has no value at all.
LaserGuy wrote:Sure, let's crunch some numbers.
I don't calculate when studies exist. See this. I have no idea regarding the bias of the source but I presume that the numbers are correct.


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