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05:45 pm: When Can We Murder Grandma?

baby


Not a human


Many years ago, I was driving down the highway, from North Carolina to Maryland, in the company of a friend, with whom I was secretly in love, and we were discussing abortion.

I had told him my stance. I was very pro-abortion. (I realize that, since then, someone came up with cute little terms “pro-life” and “pro-choice”, but this was before that. We still called it pro-abortion and anti-abortion.)

My reasons were as follows:

I believed that all life was sacred, that to kill would be to break a commandment. I believed that this was in direct disobedience to the will of God. So, I personally would never have an abortion.

BUT, I felt I had made this decision on religious grounds. Thus, abortion should be legal so that everyone could make their own decision based on their own religion.

I felt very strongly about this. So strongly that I had voted a pro-abortion ticket one year.

I felt this was about defending religious freedom.

But, as I chatted about the issue with my friend, he brought up the word murder.

“Abortion’s not murder!” I scoffed.


But I was a bit unnerved. Never had I before heard abortion referred to as murder.

“Murder is the unlawful killing of a human being,” quipped my legal-minded friend, who was an atheist just out of law school. He then listed the times when it is lawful to kill a human being: self-defense, defense of others.

Laws in favor of abortion, he pointed out, did not make it lawful to murder a human being. They merely defined an unborn child as “not yet a human being” and, thus, not covered by these laws.

I countered by explaining how, sometimes, a young woman’s whole life would be ruined by having a baby—both the mother’s and the child’s life would be miserable.

If the mother has an abortion and waits to have a child until she is older and settled, all will be much better. For everyone.

These were not idle words to me.

A good friend had been raped and had an abortion. (I would say ‘decided to have an abortion’ but later I found out she was more pushed into it.)

A good  friend had gotten pregnant. The father was a boyfriend who was younger than her…too young to legally marry. She was bright but came from a difficult background. Had she decided to keep the child, everything in her life would have been thrown out of whack. She didn’t even have a place to stay.

Despite my personal objections to abortion—my personal religious views—I had gone with her to the clinic, so she would not be alone.

So, I did not speak idly when I talked of the cost to the lives of young women, should they chose to keep their babies.

My legalistic, atheist friend—who didn’t care one way or the other about abortion—countered thoughtfully with something like, “It’s a huge burden to have to take care of your aging grandmother. Some people’s lives are financially ruined by such burdens.

“Should we be able to kill our senile old grandparents?”

It was like being struck by lighting.

Because, of course, the answer was no.

Not even if it would be really, really convenient were we allowed to murder another human being.

So, why was having a baby different?

The baby would at least eventually grow up and live on its own. One’s aging relatives might never recover, and yet…

There was no argument by which doing away with unwanted human beings was not murder.

So…why was abortion different?

It took my fifteen years to make up my mind about this question and come to the conclusion that I had been wrong to be pro-abortion.

Now, you might ask: why did it take so long?

Simple question, right? Murder is wrong? How could you take so long to grasp that?

Because of my friend—the one whose hand I had held at the clinic, the one who had been raped, and others.

I felt that if I took a stand against abortion, it would be like betraying them.

And I didn’t want to let them down.

Eventually, however, I realized: We don’t do our friend any service by telling them that something is okay if it is not okay. That is not friendship.

That is cowardice disguised as friendliness.

But I also feel that taking a stand against something that is wrong does not mean that we have to be rabid about it.

I don’t have to call my friends and brow beat them about their past bad choices. Or even think badly of them for the choices they made with the best wisdom they have at the time.

After all, at the time, I approved, too.

On the third hand, allowing more children to be murdered because of not wanting to condemn the mistakes of the past is not good either!

Because killing human beings does something to our souls.

Once you dehumanize other humans, things go wrong in other parts of your psyche.

Once it is okay to kill a clump of cells, what about through the first three months?

What about right before the baby is born?

What about after it’s born? You can find papers on the Internet saying that a born baby isn’t so different from an unborn one, so we should be able to kill it, too.

There is something very, very wrong with that argument!

Did you know that for late term abortions they have, at times, turned a baby around, during labor, so that they can kill it as it comes out.

Because, according to the current crazy lawsin some states, if the head is still inside the mother, it’s not human and can be torn apart with scissors or stabbed in the brain. While, if the head comes out first, and the feet are still in, it’s human, and cannot be killed.

There is something very, very wrong with that, too.

And the methods for killing it involve scissors—on a baby who would be alive and breathing, if they waited a few minutes.

Can you imagine if it were legal to buy kittens and puppies and keep them while they were cute and fuzzy, but the moment they grew into dogs—we were allowed to cut they apart or stab them in the head with scissors?

Without any painkiller?

But that is not legal. We have laws against cruelty to animals.

If we, as a culture, know better than to treat animals in such a fashion, shouldn’t unborn human beings—with the potential to be just like you and me—be granted at least the same rights?

The advantage of not dehumanizing human beings—not killing them at any state, born, unborn, grandma or grandchild, young or old, sick or well—is: if our laws protect humans, even the marginal ones, they will stand strong.

Human beings will be protected.

The moment we start chipping away at the strength of the law to protect human life, we are all in danger.

You think not? You think we can keep just a few types of humans dehumanized and protect the rest?

It used to be that abortions were supposed to be safe and rare. That was the rallying cry of the DNC. “Abortion is a tragedy, but sometimes it is a necessary tragedy.”

This summer, the crowd at the DNC cheered an abortion.

They cheered because a baby had been murdered.

***

Run, Grandma, they'll be coming for you next!



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Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

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Comments

[User Picture]
From:keross
Date:August 16th, 2016 10:15 pm (UTC)
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Well said. I can tell that you really have thought long and hard about this very sensitive topic.

I know a couple of people whose position is that it is no murder since it is the woman's body. When I asked them why then was Scott Peterson charged with two murders the answer defied logic: Lacy, the mother, had not made the choice.

In effect what they were saying is that the mother is the only one who could decide to kill her unborn child. If anyone else does, it is murder. That's Double standards in my opinion. If it was murder when Scott did it, then it would have been murder if Lacy had done it.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 02:16 am (UTC)
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I might at some point do a second post just about those 15 years and some of the arguments I mulled over.

One was...when a mom loses her baby due to miscarriage, is she wrong to mourn? Was that not a human?

Yeah. Definitely agree.
[User Picture]
From:keross
Date:August 17th, 2016 11:25 am (UTC)
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My sister had a miscarriage -well, more than one actually - and she mourns the loss even to this day. Whether they were born or not, those were her babies
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 06:37 pm (UTC)
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I felt similarly. She has my sympathies.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 17th, 2016 09:07 am (UTC)
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It's illegal for you to break my leg. It's legal for a doctor to break my leg if it's part of a medical procedure. Is that also a double standard?
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 17th, 2016 08:59 pm (UTC)
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Of course it is a double standard. Do you know what double standards are?
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 18th, 2016 05:31 am (UTC)
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I was responding to the comment which said: "If it was murder when Scott did it, then it would have been murder if Lacy had done it."

As you can see from the example I gave, this is not necessarily true. It's assault if I break your leg; it's not assault when a doctor breaks your leg to reset it.

So it might not be murder if Lacy did it: it depends on the context and the legal framework; and of course the type of action that was undertaken.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 19th, 2016 12:24 am (UTC)
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The two cases are not equivalent.
[User Picture]
From:keross
Date:August 19th, 2016 08:53 pm (UTC)
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I see a flaw in your argument.

Compare who the harm being done to versus whose interest is being served:
If a doctor is breaking the harm is being done to you, but it is in *your* best interest.

In an Abortion the harm is done to baby, in the interest of .. .. well, not the baby.

If I break it your leg it won’t necessarily be classed assault. It most likely would either be the result of an accident, which is at worst negligence, or you were terminally stupid and tried to harm me or my kith and kin – at which point it would be self-defense – - still not an assault.

So, it is not a double standard - because there is no comparison. The first is with your permission, or the permission of your POA, and to help you. The second usually fails to meet the standards of simple assault.

Finally: It is very rare for a person to die as a result of a broken leg. You would have to break the leg in just such a way as to sever the femoral artery so the person bleeds out. Abortion always results in a death.
[User Picture]
From:oldmomlady
Date:August 17th, 2016 10:24 am (UTC)
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Thing is, the fetus is NOT part of a woman's body. The blood is different, even if it's the same type (which often it isn't. I have four children, only one has my blood type). The placenta and umbilicus keeps the baby separate from the mother (even while connecting them, and nourishing the baby) so her blood doesn't kill him/her. So the "my body, my choice" argument doesn't wash.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 09:29 pm (UTC)
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Exactly.
[User Picture]
From:jack_arcalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 04:43 am (UTC)
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If the fetus's brain is no more complex than an animal's then killing said fetus is no worse than slaughtering an animal.
[User Picture]
From:Joel C. Salomon
Date:August 17th, 2016 08:55 am (UTC)
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That “logic” holds for born children as well.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 17th, 2016 09:03 am (UTC)
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Yes, it does. What would be your counter-argument?
[User Picture]
From:keross
Date:August 17th, 2016 11:28 am (UTC)
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Ah, but we have people like PETA and ALF and a host of other groups, that get very upset about animals being killed, so why are they not getting as upset about taking an innocent human life?
[User Picture]
From:zaklog
Date:August 17th, 2016 12:02 pm (UTC)
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Is it okay to kill a senior citizen with dementia?
[User Picture]
From:juliet_winters
Date:August 19th, 2016 11:21 pm (UTC)
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I expect that will be permitted within a few years.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 17th, 2016 02:15 pm (UTC)

Coma

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If you were in a Coma, but improving and would be back in a few months?
Animals have actualized their potential, the baby has not.
Can I crush the eggs of an endangered species?
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 06:38 pm (UTC)

Re: Coma

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The fact that we protect the eggs of endangered species, to me, shows we should be protecting unborn human, too.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 09:31 pm (UTC)
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Is human-ness measured by brain power? Do you advocate killing people who are mentally limited, mentally ill, in a coma, senile, and asleep?

Or might there be more to a human that just that?
[User Picture]
From:minihaha
Date:August 17th, 2016 08:54 am (UTC)
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This journal entry was featured on Live Journal's home page.

I read this and a few other of your posts. Your writing is creative, thoughtful, and interesting so I added you as a friend so that I can continue to read future posts.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 06:36 pm (UTC)
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Thanks. ;-) And welcome.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 17th, 2016 09:09 am (UTC)
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I'm interested to know what it is about human beings that you believe makes them sacred?

I don't believe anything like that, although I do believe that life has value.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 06:40 pm (UTC)
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Look at it backwards...do you want to live in a society that protects your basic rights? Or one that thinks you are disposable?

The safest way to maintain that we are free to live good lives is to make sure that our laws protect people like us.

The broader the definition of human the laws protect, the more likelihood that we, ourselves, won't fall through the cracks.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 17th, 2016 07:39 pm (UTC)
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What is the definition of human that you would like the law to protect, that it would cover (for example) a blastocyt?
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 08:28 pm (UTC)
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What is the definition of Peregrine Falcon that we protect eggs, too?

If anything human is protected, nothing human will ever be dehumanized.

Safest option.

Baring that, I would pick around 22 weeks...when babies clearly feel pain and can survive on their own in an incubator as a cut off.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 18th, 2016 05:41 am (UTC)
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I agree with your criteria of "when babies feel pain and can survive on their own" - it seems reasonable to me.

Can you give me examples of states that allow late term abortions where the child is killed during labour?

[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 19th, 2016 12:27 am (UTC)
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I believe there are 8 states that allow this. Don't recall off hand exactly which ones. Colorado and Alaska are among them, unless laws have changed recently.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 17th, 2016 02:24 pm (UTC)

War

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You find an equal dehumanizing on the right for War. We can indiscriminately torture and kill "them" because they are not "us humans". The blobs on the Drone camera screens we incinerate. The 500,000 Iraqi children we sanctioned to death. What we wouldn't do to a kitten we have done at CIA black sites.
In Afghanistan and Iraq they were Hadjis. Vietnam, Gooks. WW2, Krauts and Nips.
Saddam and Quadaffi were inconvenient, but not an immediate or direct threat.
I'd add police who are made paranoid and see any object as a threat, so they are always justified shooting because they are constantly and irrationally "in fear of their lives" and think everything "was a weapon". They also shoot pets, look up puppycide.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 17th, 2016 06:37 pm (UTC)
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oh dear... when is a person's body their own body? The anti-abortion style of think will lead to involuntary organ "donation". It already leads to the unspoken belief that it's okay to rape women. (Because women aren't people like men are. After all, do you hear any laws telling men that they can't do something with their body?)

A fetus is a potential human being. A grandmother is an actual human being.

Nobody has the right to use another person's body against their will. There's a reason we have rape laws. That fetus, if you want to define it as a person, is guilty of the crime of body rape.

I don't have the right to take your child's kidney to save my child's life. I don't have the right to hit you over the head and steal even a drop of your blood.

But this is the kicker - we aren't even allowed to take organs from dead people. That is a right we maintain even though a person dies every day who would be alive if we could take that dead body's organ and implant it into a living person. We value the memory of that person so much that we draw a line and go "No - we do not take the body of a deceased person and use them for parts." But obviously - the anti-abortion advocate does think that women should have fewer rights than a dead person. And that's why I know that a world run by anti-abortion advocates is a world made of pure hell - a world where anybody can steal another body's kidney and no body will be horrified. A world where a woman can be raped.. and you will cheer because it could create a "baby". A world where people who look different will be treated like slaves. And this will all be because you chose to pretend that a woman doesn't have the same rights to her body as anybody else.

That fetus is guilty of a crime. It is stealing another person's body and using it against that person's will. It doesn't matter if the fetus cannot comprehend that it is committing a crime. The fact is that it is a criminal the moment the pregnant person refused consent to her body being used in that manner.

BTW - lawmakers explicitly added a law to make it a crime to kill a fetus. It was a cheater maneuver to bring about embryo person hood.

My motto - if we remove a woman's right to her own body, than you really shouldn't be whining about an imaginary creature's rights.

To women who miscarried - you had a dream. That's it. There's a difference between the death of your dream and the actual death of a living breathing child in your arms. You felt the death of your hope in having a child. But it wasn't a child. No birthdays, no tears, no loving touch... it was just the death of your dream. Get over it and stop sacrificing other women just to satiate your broken dead dreams.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 06:44 pm (UTC)
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The unborn child was invited there by the action of the parents. It is the mother's duty to protect it with her life.

As to rape, people keep shouting about how we need abortion in cases of pregnancy due to rape. But rape does not turn a woman into a monster--just because the man acted like a monster.

70-85% of women who become pregnant due to rape CHOOSE to keep the baby.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:August 17th, 2016 10:15 pm (UTC)

Tough subject but worth talking about

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What if abortion was illegal?
A woman would have no choice but to have the baby but she could still give it up after birth. Some would be adopted while the rest would go to the state and since all these unwanted pregnancies turn into unwanted children they go from a burden on the woman to a burden of the state.

And what about the women who don't want the pregnancy despite the law? We already know from history that they will find a way and a lot of times that way isn't safe for them.

Or the woman who does have the baby and keeps it only to be an unfit parent resulting in negligence and death of said baby? It could be argued that if she had been able to have an abortion while it was a fetus she wouldn't have been put in a situation to kill a baby she did not want and go to jail to then become a burden on the tax payers.

I think its fine for everyone to have their own opinion but I don't feel we should be making laws to dictate one sides opinions on the matter.

What makes this topic a tough one is that there is more than one scenario that would lead to an abortion.

[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:August 17th, 2016 11:33 pm (UTC)

Re: Tough subject but worth talking about

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What if murder was illegal? People with burdensome relatives would have no choice but to put them into nursing homes.

Of course, some people would just slip Gramps some poison, or mislabel his medicine. We know from history that many people do carry out murders.

They might keep Gramps at home, but turn out to be an unfit caretaker.

It's fine to have your own opinion about the elderly, but no one should tell someone else that they have to keep their grandparents alive...

Oh, wait...yes, they do. Because MURDER is illegal, even when you have really good reasons for wanting someone dead.
[User Picture]
From:juliet_winters
Date:August 19th, 2016 11:37 pm (UTC)
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It is the dehumanization that leads to genocides and slavery and executing women for crimes that men are allowed.

When a group is deemed not quite human, be they Native Americans, Jews, Irish, African America, or in the mother's womb, it's open season.

Civilized rules need not apply. Instead, it's down to a matter of convenience. And, once a society has started on that road, it is very difficult to turn around because so many are complicit.
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