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Friday, November 30, 2007

Save Us from Fools

I've been trying to stay away.

Other than the minor fact that abortion is still a legal medical procedure in this state when performed by a licensed physician and with the concurrence of the woman , is there anything about this post by Jessica McBride that even resembles logical thought ... oh hell, how about adult thought?

An Appleton man is correctly charged with "first-degree murder of an unborn child."

So why aren't women who abort their unborn children charged with the same offense?

The only difference is who's taking the life. But the life is the same no matter who's taking it. If it wasn't a life, he wouldn't have been charged. So, logically, if it's a life, as the system has thus conceded, why do some people have the right to take it? Can you think of any other crime where the victim is the same, and there is the intentional taking of life, but there's different legal consequence for different perpetrators? The only analogy I can think of is for mentally ill defendants or juveniles - same victim, different punishment.
Another example of the “brilliance” and “genius” of the right side of the cheddarsphere, I guess.

29 Swings of the bat:

Dad29 said...

You might make an ATTEMPT to defeat her logic...

But that would be a problem, no?

Other Side said...

Come on, daddio ... if there were any logic involved. In any case, I think the practice still being "legal" sums it up nicely.

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

I *gasp* agree with dad29. You didn't even attempt to defeat her argument. You just passed on it as if her alleged illogic was obvious. I don't care for Jessica McBride, and I consider myself pro-choice (although I sometimes waiver on that) but I think that it is inconsistent that a mother can terminate a pregnancy but if someone else causes the death of the unborn child they are charged with murder. If you really believe that an unborn child is not a person, you should also believe that murder is not the appropriate charge in the Appleton case she mentiones.

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

"In any case, I think the practice still being "legal" sums it up nicely."

Well, no. It doesn't. McBride is talking about policy. The issue is what should be legal. Or how should an attack that leads to the termination of a pregnancy be classified in the criminal code.

To just note that abortion is legal isn't very helpful in sorting out these issues. It's like the protectionist right-wingers that constantly say "illegal immigrants are breaking the law" as if that says anything when the issue is what the law should be.

John Foust said...

OK, how about the notion that a woman gets to control her own body?

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

Yes, that is another factor that many people take into account when discussing abortion policy. It is one thing to weigh against McBride's point. However, that does not make McBride's argument illogical, as you suggested it was. It also doesn't do dick to explain the more specific issue McBride was addressing, which is whether or not a fetus is a person.

For the pro-choice argument to hold up, basically two things need to be true. (1) Women have a right to control their own bodies, and (2) A fetus is something less than a person. McBride was only questioning the second one. Your bringing up the first one doesn't really undermine her point in any way.

Other Side said...

This was the question:

An Appleton man is correctly charged with "first-degree murder of an unborn child."

So why aren't women who abort their unborn children charged with the same offense?


And the answer is what I have stated ... abortion by concurring women, with the assistance of legally licensed physicians is legal. That is why women are not charged with murder.

This man from Kaukauna put drugs in this woman's food, drink, what have you with the express purpose of stopping the pregnancy.

He is not a legally licensed physician nor did she concur. Big difference.

It was not her choice to have the pregnancy terminated.

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

So why was it murder? Why not "destruction of property" or "assault"?

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

And it's not like there's a statute (that I know of) that says "abortion is legal with a doctor and consent" or whatever. There's just a constitutional prohibition against passing laws that say the opposite. There apparently is a statute governing "murder of an unborn child." McBride is asking the question of whether or not this makes sense. For you to say "yeah but that's the law" doesn't really address whether the policies behind the two statutes make sense or are consistent.

elliot said...

This has always been a flaw in pro-choice logic.

Either it's a human being, protected by the law.

Or it's nothing but a bunch of skin cells NOT protected by the law.

He could be charged with assault, or illegally administering a drug, or something else like that.

But it can't be murder when he does it, but a Constitutional right when she does the exact same thing. At least, not and still have any logical validity.

Other Side said...

This is an intereting discussion, but it has nothing to do with McBride's original question. She asked a question and I answered it. Now onto the philosophical underpinings.

Patel is being charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide of an unborn child.

Patel, without permission of the woman, plyed her with drugs that caused her pregnancy to be aborted. In this case, the woman had made the choice to have the pregnancy go full term.

She has been denied this choice and the child she hoped to bear.

I can understand the charges in this case based on the above. However, why attempted homocide? Wasn't Patel successful?

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

"This is an intereting discussion, but it has nothing to do with McBride's original question. She asked a question and I answered it."

Well, technically you answered it. But your answer really sucked:

Q: "Why is abortion legal?"

A: Because abortion is legal.

"Patel, without permission of the woman, plyed her with drugs that caused her pregnancy to be aborted. In this case, the woman had made the choice to have the pregnancy go full term."

But he was charged with a crime against the fetus, not a crime against the mother. Consent isn't really relevant if you believe that a fetus is a person.

"why attempted homocide?"

GOod question. The fact that you asked it also shows that you regard the crime charged as one against the fetus and not against the mother.

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

"Consent isn't really relevant if you believe that a fetus is a person."

That should be, THE MOTHER'S consent isn't really relevant if you believe the a fetus is a person.

Other Side said...

Well, technically you answered it. But your answer really sucked:

Q: "Why is abortion legal?"

A: Because abortion is legal.


No, she asked why the man was being charged with attempted homicide, but women who have abortions are not.

I have answered that question a number of times ... none were as simple as what you quoted.

I do regard it as a crime against both the woman and the fetus. Her choice to continue the pregnancy lent viability to her fetus. She believed the fetus was a person. This man denied her this choice and this fetus. The charge should have been charged with homocide.

But don't get this confused with legal abortion. The woman has the choice ... period.

Other Side said...

That last one was awkwardly written, but that will happen when holding a baby (for which the choice was happily made).

David Casper said...

Whoah there...

"She believed the fetus was a person."

So, that solves the age old question of when a fetus becomes a person? When the mother decides it to be?

That was a lot easier than I thought!

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

Look what you did Other Side. here I am defending Jessica McBride and agreeing with Dad29 and Casper. Did you really have to try to make such a confused (dare I say dishonest?) point?

"No, she asked why the man was being charged with attempted homicide, but women who have abortions are not."

Which is just a simplified way of saying, "why has society/government/courts determined that a fetus is a person when a third party kills it but not a person when the mother kills it? Or put another way, "why is it legal for a mother to kill her fetus when it's not legal for other people to kill her fetus?" Your answer basically was that it's legal because it's legal.

"I do regard it as a crime against both the woman and the fetus."

Well, it would be pretty hard to commit a crime against an unborn fetus without also commiting a crime against the mother. But they're different crimes and we're not talking about the latter crime.

"Her choice to continue the pregnancy lent viability to her fetus. She believed the fetus was a person. This man denied her this choice and this fetus. The charge should have been charged with homocide."

The vast majority of people in the world don't believe the question of whether a fetus is a person is a subjective question. And for once, I agree with the vast majority of people. Regardless of how you feel about abortion rights, do you really think the mother gets to decide when her fetus is a person?

"But don't get this confused with legal abortion. The woman has the choice ... period."

Ahh, the old trick of ending your sentence by spelling out p-e-r-i-o-d. No surer sign of a bad argument. Phil Collins is the greatest President in the History of Canada... Period. The woman has the choice ... period. Except except except when the fetus reaches the point where everyone agrees it's a human being. So here's the breakdown:

Religious right says fetus is person... period.

Criminal code says fetus is person when it is killed by third party.

Constitution as interpreted by the Supreme Court [basically] says fetus is not person.

Typical leftist says fetus is not a person.

Other side says fetus is a person when mother decides it's a person.

Jesusisjustalrightwithme says fetus is person when it has a brain and/or can servive outside the womb. (I'm torn between these two points in time. I'm working on it.)

EVERYONE agrees that Fetus is person when fetus is born.

Other Side said...

I should never try to get involved in questions like this when I am taking care of the baby.

The woman's right to choose is absolute. You can debate this however you want, but this is, IMO, a done deal.

I cannot control how a DA decides to act. Done deal.

I answered McBride's question. Done deal.

Perhaps another time when I am not distracted, because, I will admit my answers have been all over the place. However, I do resent the "dishonest" tag being applied to me (even hypothetically).

I'm honest enought to provide this forum, let you discuss this, and take your thoughts seriously. Unlike some of the righty sites where the name-calling would have begun almost instantly.

Damn it, she's in the pots and pans.

I gotta go.

capper said...

I think the problem lies in the fact that as each major side (pro-choice and pro-life) has had control of the government, the definition has been so convoluted that many of the laws are contradictory to each other.

I think that the DA probably overcharged the defendant in order to set up a plea deal on a lesser charge.

In regards to the larger question. The fetus is part of the mother, biologically, until the time of birth. JIJAWM is probably closest with the viability of the fetus stance. But the biggest thing is that the if one considers it part of the mother, she should have the control of her own body. What the defendent in this case did, IMO, is assault a part of her body. If the fetus was viable at the time of the miscarriage, a murder charge might be appropriate, but difficult to prove in an objective manner.

On a personal note, I believe abortion to be wrong, with the exception of rape or health of the mother being in jeopardy, but I also don't believe that my beliefs should be foisted on others.

Other Side said...

I should have left this discussion for a different time becayse I was too distracted, and ultimately made some conflicting statement.

Oh well.

However, capper, I'm with you. I don't like abortion ... I mean, really, who does? However, I am a firm beliver that it's the woman's right to choose how to proceed with any pregnancy.

That's a good point about the DA. Plus it was guaranteed to get some media attention. That's always helpful for career moves.

Dad29 said...

And the answer is what I have stated ... abortion by concurring women, with the assistance of legally licensed physicians is legal. That is why women are not charged with murder.

Late returning here because I had to be revived after reading JIJ's concurrence with my remark. Still taking smelling salts.

You did NOT answer her question, which WAS philosophical. Instead, you responded with the facile (and philosophically inconsistent) "because the law SAYS so." This from an individual who hates "...X said so"???

Please.

Then you slide further into a pit:
Her choice to continue the pregnancy lent viability to her fetus. She believed the fetus was a person

So if I don't believe that YOU are a person, then executing you is...what? No harm, no foul?

And, adding no credibility, you then state: The woman's right to choose is absolute. You can debate this however you want, but this is, IMO, a done deal

Dred Scott was "a done deal." But what's right and what's "done" ain't always the same.

Capper jumps in with a nuanced position, and says: The fetus is part of the mother, biologically, until the time of birth. Unfortunately, that's inaccurate, as either the fetus IS or IS NOT a person. Capper's argument really means that "birth" is personhood (but since babies can be "born" at 5 months gestation and do just fine, there's this..."when" problem.)

Another way to put it is that Capper's is an argument from dependency. That effectively means that a 1-year-old, who remains utterly dependent on Mom and Dad (or SOME adult) is "not a person."

You know, like the one in the pots and pans...

Other Side said...

I see where you are coming from dad and JIJ, if we are assuming that what the man did was an abortion. But is it an abortion when it is performed without the woman's consent?

And dad, you keep smelling salts around the house? Do you need them often? :)

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

"I see where you are coming from dad and JIJ, if we are assuming that what the man did was an abortion. But is it an abortion when it is performed without the woman's consent?"

Huh? I don't think you do see what we are saying. The issues is why we call it an "abortion" in one instance and a "murder" in another, based on who's doing the "killing." You keep talking about consent, but if the fetus is regarded as a person, the mother's consent shouldn't matter, should it? I mean a mother can't kill a newborn because the newborn is undoubtedly a person. That's the same reason a third party can't kill a newborn.

So, if one section of the law regards a fetus as a person, and for that reason it considers killing the fetus to be murder if committed by a third party, why does the mother's "consent" even enter the picture if the law says the fetus is a person?

capper said...

Dad-

I don't know which is more egregious. That you take my words out of context or that you distort them to fit your opinion.

I did not state anything about dependence. I did mention viability which you either missed or ignored.

And in a biological sense, I still feel I am correct. Especially during the first few weeks, the fetus in not developed into anything but a cluster of unassigned cells and would not survive out of the host body. I recognize and acknowledge the pro-life position that life begins at conception, but that is their opinion, just as what I stated is my opinion. It does not mean that it is right, and it does not mean it is wrong. It just is.

JIJAWM-As I pointed out, the law has become complex and contradictory with itself, much like the Bible. The same question could be asked in reverse. "If one section of the law doesn't regard the fetus as a person, why would it be considered murder if the abortion is done by a third party, regardless of the wishes of the mother?"

It comes down to who's rights are greater, the fetus or the mother, and in which stages of pregnancy do these rights change, if at all. If a woman is raped, or has her health and life threatened by a continuance of the pregnancy, does she have to forfeit her rights to that of a fetus?

Other Side said...

We don't ... the DA did. And, I was only asking a question ... is it an abortion when it is performed without the woman's consent?

Dad29 said...

I recognize and acknowledge the pro-life position that life begins at conception, but that is their opinion, just as what I stated is my opinion. It does not mean that it is right, and it does not mean it is wrong. It just is.

Hmmmnnnn....

The right rule to apply is that of "prudence." You have a serious auto accident and the Sheriff's deputy thinks you're dead. But his training is to call the ambo, anyway, and attempt to revive/sustain you until you are actually, clinically dead--in a morally certain sense.

That's prudence.

Same (mutatis mutandis) to the "cluster of cells." You don't KNOW with moral certainty that the "cluster" is or is not a human being--but applying "prudence" you assume it IS until proven beyond a doubt otherwise.

Otherwise, the Sheriff's deputy could just step over your body or shovel you out of the way.

Capper, I did not mis-represent your argument. You state "part of the body." I state that you are wrong, and confusing 'habituation' or 'dependency' with "part of."

ANY med student will tell you that the baby is NOT a blood vessel, or leg, or esophagus.

Living someplace does not make you "part of the house."

Finally, OS, I started with the smelling salts when I started reading your blog.

Other Side said...

You're too kind, daddio.

Other Side said...

You're too kind, daddio.

JesusIsJustAlrightWithMe said...

"JIJAWM-As I pointed out, the law has become complex and contradictory with itself, much like the Bible. The same question could be asked in reverse. "If one section of the law doesn't regard the fetus as a person, why would it be considered murder if the abortion is done by a third party, regardless of the wishes of the mother?""

I think that is how I asked that question. Half-empty, half-full, wahtever. I'm just looking for consistency here.

"It comes down to who's rights are greater, the fetus or the mother, and in which stages of pregnancy do these rights change, if at all. If a woman is raped, or has her health and life threatened by a continuance of the pregnancy, does she have to forfeit her rights to that of a fetus?"

Yeah, obviously it's about the conflicting rights. But a HUGE part of that question is how the fetus is defined. It's rights are certainly different if it is considered a person, which is what we're talking about.