Okay, Fine, Abortion Again.

Pretty much bullshit, son. You oppose abortion, and that’s fine. That’s your opinion. But don’t try to claim that “Between a woman and her doctor” is “appeal to authority.” That’s a load. Instead, it’s an invocation of the right to privacy, and of doctor-patient privilege, as enshrined in law.

Democrats believe that medical procedures can and should be regulated. Abortions are included. There is a proper and safe way to provide one, just as there is a proper and safe way to prescribe pain pills.

Some places, like Texas, are pretending to use “safety regulations” as a means of making abortions totally impossible. That’s a gross violation of women’s constitutional rights.

(And there’s some irony in someone unloading a lot of political talk…and then complaining about political talk.)

ETA: belongs in Great Debates, not Elections; have requested a move.

Saying abortion should be between a woman and her doctor is like saying murder should be between a man and his hired assassin. Right from the start, you are deliberately trying to hide the fact that there are three parties, not two: the woman, the doctor and the unborn child.

My own view is that abortion SHOULD be between a woman and her doctor, and so should everything else, subject to regulations based on science. Regulations based on “we don’t actually trust doctors”, which is what’s happening with opiod prescriptions, flies in the face of what Democrats say they believe, but then we knew that the “doctor” part was about as sincere as the “rare” part of “safe, legal, and rare”.

As for the Texas regulations, there’s a greater principle at stake there as well that Democrats only support tactically in this particular case. But the Supreme Court has an opportunity here to make a more sweeping ruling: that regulations intended to put businesses out of business are unconstitutional.

All we need to do is really just get liberals to admit that a large part of their positions on issues are based on coalition politics rather than any real principles. So Democrats, normally pro-government, will become all libertarian if a particularly loud interest group wants it that way.

And actually, rather than explore abortion again, what I’d really like to explore are political parties’ internal conflicts between ideology and coalition politics. The same politics that force Democrats to be libertarians on abortion also forces Republicans to be pro-government on abortion. But we see similar conflicts on immigration: Democrats, normally wanting to place reasonable limits on things like corporations taking advantage of cheap labor, have recently found the need to prioritize the desires of Latinos over everything else. And Republicans, normally paragons of free trade(which includes open borders), trying to appease a nativist base.

Being pro-abortion is not a libertarian stance, because protecting people from the actions of others (in this case, protecting the unborn child from the mother’s desire to have him or her killed) is a legitimate use of government power to even the staunchest libertarian.

Off to GD per request of OP.

The trouble with this argument is that it assumes that the fetus is a person from the moment of conception. Personally, I don’t believe that it attains personhood until later in development. If I lay a brick on the ground and then smash it, I’m not destroying a house. A mass of cells the size of a slug is not in my view a person though it has the potential to develop into one. Since we will never agree on when the fetus becomes a person with rights, there is no way for us to agree on abortion.

Like, protecting women from having their bodies commandeered?

This is one of those issues in which I have one foot on the left side of the political spectrum and the other on the right side.

For the first 3 to 4 months I have no issue with the woman making the decision what is best for her. For the last 3 months I am quite troubled by late term abortions. Those months in between I just don’t know.

Not when something/someone is inside another person and they want it/them out. It’s pretty simple – if someone or something is inside you, and you want it out, you should have the right to get it out no matter what. The circumstances don’t matter – in any and all cases, you have the right to get that person/thing out of you if you want it out, and if they won’t leave on their own, then you have the right to use force.

There doesn’t seem to be anything more libertarian then full control of one’s own body, including full control of who and what gets to go inside and stay inside.

I’m similarly troubled by late-term abortions. But my troubles don’t matter – what matters is how a woman feels about who/what is inside her body. I trust women to make these decisions rather than government.

i am just stating my thoughts on this, I am not advocating either way.

There are two questions to consider here:

• Is abortion a bad thing? Would it be better for everyone if they were somehow magically not an option?


• Should abortions be illegal? Would it be better for society if they were against the law, such that people who seek them and/or who perform them are arrested and prosecuted?

Le’ts dispense with the easy one, which is the second question: HELL no. Making abortions illegal doesn’t stop abortions from happening (although it reduces their number somewhat). The people seeking illegal abortions are less safe. It would do for organized criminal activity what dumping a truckload of hi-yield Scott’s fertilizer does for a field of hay. It would be expensive to enforce. It makes society more coercive and invasive. There would be a substantial risk of people who have miscarriages becoming criminal suspects at the same time that they are mourning their loss.

Now let’s look at the first one. Pretend we can make abortions “go away”. Parallel universe in which the medical technology for doing an abortion simply doesn’t exist. Better world? I vote no. Sure, some abortions seem to me to be selfish, and the people involved in obtaining them to be on very questionable moral grounds. Imagine an upper middle class high school junior, well on her way to a competitive college, got her life in front of her, and her parents find out she’s pregnant. They pressure her and corner her and implore her and wear her down until she agrees to get an abortion although she doesn’t want one. I could come up with others. You can probably do so, too.

I know some of you have judgmental attitudes towards women who are cavalier about pregnancy and abortion, women who don’t seem to do much to prevent pregnancy from occurring and who get multiple abortions. Some of you see that as tragic, some of you see it as disgusting, some who don’t are at least disturbed by the lack of gravity with which some women seem to approach this decision.

But then there are the many many women who took precautions and used birth control and still got pregnant under circumstances where being pregnant is disruptive and destructive to the life they are living. And who do consider themselves to be making a life or death decision, a heavy decision that they take seriously. Life itself involves hard choices sometimes. In our culture, although the default rule on killing another person is that it constitutes murder, we acknowledge that there are exceptions. You should not kill casually but sometimes a woman’s gotta do what a woman’s gotta do. Men do it too. Not have abortions, but kill people when they decide that it really needs to happen, that it isn’t murder, that it’s necessary. That it may not be a pure good thing but that overall it is what needs to happen. They do it when they feel they have to. They do it whether it would get them arrested for murder if found out or not, if that’s what it comes to.

Meanwhile, the question at hand is not limited to the effect it has on the person who is having (or is not able to have) an abortion. It’s the effect on society as a whole. Biology and sociology intersect at the junction of sexuality and reproduction. Men want sex because they’re wired to have an appetite for it and it feels good. Women want sex because they’re wired to have an appetite for it and it feels good. We all have our ideals and our pickinesses and our tastes and we seek out sex in the format that we think will be most personally fulfilling —perhaps a loving companionable ongoing relationship, perhaps a hungry grasping at some deliciously hot person, perhaps somtimes one and sometimes the other. None of this so far is intrinsically adversarial between the sexes. If only one sex had a sexual hunger and the other were being pestered, bothered, exploited and pressured for it without having any semblance of a reciprocal interest, that would be awful, a nasty hateful adversarial war between the sexes. And right square into the middle of all that comes the fact of pregnancy. And abortion. In the absence of being able to negate a pregnancy through abortion, the threat of an unwanted pregnancy makes sex an adversarial battleground. This is not a theoretical point. We know this from experience, we’ve been there. It’s better with abortion available. The sexes are less adversarially poised.

So no. I would be totally against making abortion “banished”, even if you could eliminate it without the messy ineffectivnesses and the side-effects of trying to do so by making it illegal.

I am in favor of abortion being available to anyone who wants one. I may not agree with the desirability of every abortion performed, but I think the pregnant person should always have it available to her as an option, period, end of story. Her choice.

I don’t shy away from the assertion that it is killing and that what is being killed is a human life. I am in favor of pregnant women having the unrestricted right to kill their living human embryos and fetuses if they find it necessary to do so. I don’t regard it as murder. If she deems it necessary, it’s necessary killing. It’s a woman doing what she’s gotta do.

Women should have that right acknowledged. (They have that right. Acknowledge it). Nature has subjected women to PMS and periods and a few other things in order to vest in them the power to bear life and nurture it physically within themselves, and with that power comes responsibility. And with that responsibility comes authority.

It is women’s right to abort, not a doctor’s right to perform a procedure as he sees fit. Doctors should have the legal freedom to provide safe procedures that facilitate a woman’s exercise of her right to an abortion, but the rightness and propriety of the decision itself comes NOT from the doctor’s medical opinion or decision but from HER choice to abort. It would not be a particularly safe thing for her to abort herself at home with herbs and concoctions at home, but she has the right because the authority belongs to HER.

Sure. And when next-of-kin (or a power of attorney designee) make decisions for an unconscious person in consultation with a doctor (or sometimes doctors), the decision is between (or among) them, even if the decision is to let the unconscious person die, and become an organ donor. Maybe the person had an advance directive. Maybe not. Maybe there were conversations with the next-of-kin, or maybe not. Maybe the unconscious person in the underage child of the person making the decision.

My point is, the embryo doesn’t get a vote, because it can’t, and that’s the crux of the matter. The embryo is too immature to hold an opinion. I know some religious people like to say “Of course it would choose to live,” but we don’t know that. First embryos don’t think, or hold opinions, and if they could, we don’t know what their thought process would be like any more than we know what a dead person’s theoretical thought process would be like. “Of course it would choose to live,” is based on an adult’s experience of being alive, with no memory of being in utero.

I can postulate that embryos are in a state of bliss, and those that die in utero, by whatever means, proceed directly to another state of bliss, and get to skip over the hell that is life on earth. Sure, in the afterlife, there are some jokes they don’t get, but it’s a small price to pay. I can also postulate that dead people would not, for love or money, choose to come back to life. Those are just as fact-based as the postulate that an embryo, if consulted, would choose to be born.

It’s all ridiculous, because you can’t consult the embryo.

This is correct.

Of course, it equally applies to the “between a woman and her doctor,” line. In each case, the argument attempts to assume the truth of the underlying assumption.

However, as distasteful as it is, it is worth noting that from a policy perspective, the country has spoken on the issue: the courts have determined that while government has an interest in the life of a fetus that will become a human, that interest is not stronger (during the first trimester) than the interest the mother has in controlling her own body. That determination was made in 1972 and generally affirmed, with slight modifications, in subsequent rulings.

So the task in front of those opposing abortion is convincing the electorate that this view is untenable or wrong.

As it now stands, abortion is protected, and BobLibDem’s “slug” analogy is the correct one.


You know, there’a a vacancy on the Supreme Court right now, and that’s exactly the kind of thinking that that institution favors. Do you have any political connections to call in?


Is there any factual support for this statement? Considering that there were plenty of US jurisdictions where abortion was illegal prior to Roe v Wade, and that there are/were plenty of countries where it remained illegal for long after it was legalized in the US (Ireland, for example), there should be some data points to indicate whether underground abortions were a significant organized criminal operation.

To expand on that, there is no way for me to say that a person who believes a zygote is a person with rights is morally incorrect. If that is your belief you’re certainly entitled to it and have every right to fight that battle in the political system. We’re not going to agree on this ever but one side or the other is going to prevail legally and that side may change back and forth over time. That being said, it is one thing to fight for the right to abortion on principle and to get the Constitution or court rulings to change and to throw up petulant legal roadblocks to prevent women from accessing a procedure that is legal.

Apparently not, and I’ve been caught talking out my ass on that one. It made compelling logical sense (still does) but apparently now that I look for cites on it, what I"m finding is cites to the contrary. Usually prefaced by “surprisingly enough”. Doesn’t mean there wouldn’t be were abortion to become illegal again, but it apparently can’t be extrapolated from any historical record of such in the US.

I never cease to be amazed at how the pro-abortion crowd cannot understand what a poor argument “control” is.

After all, when I hit somebody with a baseball bat, all I am doing is exercising my right to be in full control over my own body and what it does.

The abortion argument is willfully blind to the fact that rights are not absolute.