I gotta say, somehow this was news to me, and I kinda appreciate Trump bringing the inconsistency to light. Some pro-life activist was on NPR this morning spelling out her organization’s position, which was essentially that women who get abortions are actually victims of evil abortion doctors. It all sounded very patronizing.
We could get the Mexicans to build the prisons… and pay for it, too!!!
Trump did manage to demonstrate the bankruptcy of the pro-life side. If abortion is a crime, who is the criminal? No criminal, no crime. It also shows how we treat abortion differently than other medical issues, which is why I’m always skeptical when pro-choicers say, “it’s about women’s health”. If it was, we’d look at it like any other medical procedure. We don’t. We’re perfectly happy to throw women into prison for “doctor shopping” to illegally acquire pain pills. So to the extent abortion is illegal(and under certain circumstances it is already, even in blue states), a woman who searches far and wide to find a doctor willing to do it, let’s call this doctor Bermit Frosnell just for the sake of argument, is criminally complicit.
Despite how I bash abortion a lot, I do believe it should be between a woman and her doctor in the first trimester. After that, it should be restricted, and as with any other restriction, doctors and patients that conspire to get around it should be criminally culpable.
But the laws were not written like that. It was:
It’s illegal for taxi drivers to give rides to men over 30.
Plan B is something that is available, but still there are hurdles. Here’s one article with some roadblocks, including misinformed pharmacy workers, it being out of stock, and the cost. None of those sound like huge hurdles, but the pill needs to be taken within 72 hours, so any extra hoops to jump through makes it harder for the woman and less likely she’ll get it in time. Especially for a woman who has just gone through the trauma of rape and is having a difficult time as it is. There is also misinformation about the pill, with many thinking that it is an abortion pill instead of basically being a stronger birth control pill that is just taken after the fact. Someone could be for birth control and against abortion and not want the Plan B pill since they think it causes an abortion.
Also, is there anywhere now that has the “rape exception” as part of the law? And does a police report need to be shown? A large number of rapes are never reported for various reasons, and I can imagine a number of women don’t report and then find out later that they are pregnant.
Why don’t we make this less complicated:
Abortion is already illegal under certain circumstances. If a woman knowingly seeks an illegal abortion, is she criminally responsible?
I have to agree with the OP. It seems to me that Trump’s original position makes more sense than his amended position.
Like the OP, I am pro-choice. I think abortions should be legal. But if abortions were illegal, I don’t see why a woman who chooses to have one should be immune from criminal charges. It seems to me that the woman who chooses to have an abortion is just as guilty as the doctor who performs it.
It appears to me that this distinction is just a political issue rather than a moral one. Pro-life advocates are okay with singling out doctors who perform abortions but they know if they extended the liability to women who receive abortions they’d lose too many votes.
What if a doctor gave herself an abortion?
Or the woman who isn’t a doctor? It isn’t a very complicated procedure, and women were known to self abort in the past when it was illegal.
If we prosecute the abortion provider and not the woman who obtained an abortion, what do we do with women who punch themselves in the stomach or fall down stairs or drink raw milk or douche with Lysol? Banning abortion doctors will pretty much ensure these behaviors become commonplace.
Yup, and when pressed on this by the interview, the woman I mentioned earlier hand-waved it all away by insisting that we’d get pregnant women the help they needed (as in, counseling/aid/adoption servers). Because the pro-life crowd has been sooo supportive of women’s support services in the past :rolleyes:
But that leaves unresolved the issue of a 30+ man, say, finding an abandoned taxi and driving himself somewhere in it. Is that illegal, or not?
(Analogy is, as DrCube notes, with women self-administering abortions by procuring abortifacients, or the infamous coathanger technique, or whatever.)
If the point of the law is to ensure that men over 30 don’t ride in taxis at all, because we think that a man over 30 riding in a taxi is intrinsically a bad thing that ought to be avoided, then it doesn’t make sense to leave a loophole where it’s perfectly legal for a man over 30 to ride in a taxi as long as somebody else isn’t driving it.
Taking your OP at face value: the woman might “choose” all she wants but someone has to actually perform the abortion, if abortion is illegal the one performing the act is the doctor.
Well, and suppose in this world most people don’t drive, other than professional drivers, so the guy who gets into a cab to drive himself is doing something dangerous-- he’s not licensed to drive, and doesn’t really know how. The loophole is bad because it encourages 30+ men to do something that can harm them.
Historically, that was the case at least in the US. When abortion was illegal, doctors were sometimes prosecuted, but my recollection is that no one has ever found a case of a woman who received an abortion being prosecuted for it. It’s analogous to a regime where the sellers of illegal drugs are prosecuted but not the buyers.
I think the logic is that if illegal, the woman is a victim of unjust laws. This has nothing to do with the pregnancy, she’s a victim in the same way that people arrested for the laughable non-crime of smoking pot are victims of an overly harsh and prudish justice system.
Both examples may be unfortunate, unjust or unfair, depending on one’s point of view. But it’s a stretch to call either person a victim. To me, the word victim expresses someone who suffered some sort of damage due to actions beyond their control. Someone smoking pot knows beforehand it is illegal, just as someone having sex knows the potential consequences beforehand, and presumably the laws surrounding contraception and abortion. It seems to me fair to say that one can be the victim of a robbery or natural disaster, for example, but not a victim of unfair laws. Perhaps I’m drawing to fine a point.
Or, according to the pro-life rhetoric, one where a hitman is prosecuted but not the person who hired him.
Wrong, it’s pretty simple. If abortion is murder, then the woman is a murderer. If a woman can be charged for a dui, she can be charged for murder (abortion). Not all blame goes to the bartender, in fact, most blame goes to the woman for making a conscious decision. The bartender never forced her to drink in the first place, same goes for the abortion doctor.
Trump just inadvertently took the issue to its natural logical conclusion, the reason for the uneasy feelings is because the ‘pro-life movement’ knows their ‘abortion is murder’ position is a sham and is simply political posturing.
That’s the same misinterpretation of the OP that I originally made (though I think in its own right it’s valid reasoning).
But it turns out that what the OP was actually criticizing is the position that abortion should be criminalized (e.g., maintaining that abortion bans are not unjust) while simultaneously opposing criminal penalties for women who procure abortions.
That position is essentially claiming that abortion is wrong and should be illegal but the only people who should be punished for it are the abortion providers.
Which, interestingly, is the reverse of most versions of decriminalizing prostitution: the “buyer” or john may still be liable to penalties but the “seller”, i.e., the prostitute, is not.
Based on this thread, I certainly see logical inconsistencies in the pro-life position, if women who seek an abortion are seen as victims.
However, I think there is a perfectly consistent pro-choice position:
A woman has complete control over her body.
Abortion is a purely medical procedure, and regulated by health standards and physician trading requirements like any other procedure.
The physician provides the medical service to a patient, based on medical standards, just like any other medical procedure.
There are no laws which restrict access, other than purely medical standards just like other medical procedures (doctor must have appropriate training, facility must have appropriate equipment, etc to perform the procedure safely, just like any other procedure.)
What is illogical about that?