Thread: ARTICLE: Abortion Holocaust?
May 3rd 2004, 08:32 PM #106Originally posted by deepwillidig
There is a gray area, which even if it didn't exist still leaves you begging the question.
I gave some criteria for knowing the difference between organisms and tissues, but let me cite a helpful article on this point: Maureen Condic's "Life: Defining the Beginning by the End" (http://www.firstthings.com/ftissues/...es/condic.html). Condic is an Assistant Professor of Neurobiology and Anatomy at the University of Utah. She provides a helpful definition for organisms and her definition clearly applies to the unborn:
"From the earliest stages of development, human embryos clearly function as organisms. Embryos are not merely collections of human cells, but living creatures with all the properties that define any organism as distinct from a group of cells; embryos are capable of growing, maturing, maintaining a physiologic balance between various organ systems, adapting to changing circumstances, and repairing injury. Mere groups of human cells do nothing like this under any circumstances. The embryo generates and organizes distinct tissues that function in a coordinated manner to maintain the continued growth and health of the developing body. Even within the fertilized egg itself there are distinct “parts” that must work together—specialized regions of cytoplasm that will give rise to unique derivatives once the fertilized egg divides into separate cells. Embryos are in full possession of the very characteristic that distinguishes a living human being from a dead one: the ability of all cells in the body to function together as an organism, with all parts acting in an integrated manner for the continued life and health of the body as a whole."
Again, if the zygote is not an organism, what is it?
The brain dead corpse in her example is a human organism. Is it a person?
And if the fetus, with its own set of organs and arms and legs, is not an organism, what is it?
And if the zygote and fetus are organisms, they must be human organisms (since they are organisms with human parents and a distinctly human DNA structure). Again, if the developing thing in the womb is not a human organism, what is it?
What is biologically human is not necessarily a human being, as per the brain dead example.The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be.
May 3rd 2004, 08:35 PM #107Originally posted by anthrogirl
Originally posted by Queen
Queen doesn't see all life as equal, no one does.
I see nothing wrong vegetarians. Please don't misunderstand my post. I am/was being absurd to point out absurdity.
May 3rd 2004, 09:07 PM #108Originally posted by Gilgaron
Our Western paradigm is strongly rooted in Cartesian duality; it's very hard to escape--but not impossible. However, it has shaped the way that we view the body such that the mind and body are totally separate. I suppose religion seeks to unite this in some ways, but, Religion itself is not seen as a credible structure in which to order the secular world.
anthrogirlHow can I understand God, when I haven't even achieved pure virtue?
May 4th 2004, 01:31 AM #109Originally posted by Queen
May 4th 2004, 01:36 AM #110Originally posted by anthrogirl
May 4th 2004, 01:36 AM #111Originally posted by ajohnson
Emphasis mine -
Queen doesn't see all life as equal, no one does.
I see nothing wrong vegetarians. Please don't misunderstand my post. I am/was being absurd to point out absurdity.
I have seen other pictures. Pictures of horrible deformities of babies who were born and died during child birth or just after it. Let me discribe one for you, one that made me cry for this child and I than knew how good it is that we have legal abortion:
This baby had an open mouth. It's brain grew out of it's mouth, so it wasn't in it's skull but on the outside of it's body (I use it, because I don't know the gender....not because I see this child as a 'thing'). A complete developed brain. It had lived in the womb. The baby felt everything, a complete human being! It was horrible to see.....so, should we allow that kind of pain and suffering?
And being a supporter of elective abortion is pro-choice.......just in certain cases.
Abortion in the Netherlands:
There is a worldwide interest in why the Netherlands has the lowest abortion rates in the western world. This study has been based on a comparison of the differences between practices in New Zealand and the Netherlands. Nevertheless I believe the findings in this report should be of interest to any country which would like to see a reduction in the extent to which women seek to terminate unplanned pregnancies by abortion.
These conclusions bring together the various strands in the research I began when I visited the Netherlands in April 2000.
It is clear that the law has little bearing on abortion rates in these two countries. While abortion is available as a woman's right to choose in the Netherlands, it remains a criminal offence in New Zealand unless the mother's life or health is seriously endangered by pregnancy.
Despite these differences in the law, the 1999 abortion rate — based on abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 — in New Zealand was 2.4 times the Dutch rate for the same year.
I did however come to the conclusions that provisions with regard to counselling services were an important factor governing the differences between the two countries.
Counselling for women considering abortion:
Even though counselling is not mandatory under the New Zealand law, counselling services are an integral part of the work carried out in the country's four abortion clinics where some three-quarters of all abortions are performed.
There are significant differences between the two countries in the procedures for counselling. First there is the legal requirement in the Netherlands that the woman's doctors shall discuss alternatives with her and if the woman decides on termination shall make certain she is making the decision of her own free will and not to please some other person.
There is no such requirement in New Zealand. Counsellors are however offered guidelines as to the professional standards of social workers.
Mrs de Boer from the Ministry of Health in the Hague pointed out that only 3 or 4 of Holland's 17 abortion clinics provide a counselling service. Most counselling is independent of the clinics. Much of it is provided by the woman's own doctor, by independent counsellors, psychiatrists, psychologists, spiritual advisors or groups such as VBOK and FIOM. This provides for a much greater diversity in attitudes compared to those prevalent in New Zealand where counselling is concentrated in a small group of social workers employed to work in abortion clinics or registered hospitals.
It is interesting to note that during 1999, 5,787 women were counselled by the pro-life agency VBOK and that the Dutch Government was prepared to pay the salaries of 4.5 of their social workers. In New Zealand this has so far been unthinkable although some public funding is made available to groups like Pregnancy Help because they provide a support services for mothers and pregnant women.
All of which highlights what I regard as another major difference between the two countries and that is the tolerance which is a feature of the Dutch culture.
It saddens me to have to say this but on the whole New Zealanders tend to be intolerant of those the establishment and the media choose to marginalise. Here, winning is everything.
When New Zealand's All Blacks lost out to France during the Rugby World Cup in 1999 and when our Olympic athletes received only one gold medal at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, our churlish behaviour towards those involved was an embarrassing example of the country's intolerance.
As a nation we seem to have been shaped by our first– past–the–post political history, which means that winners take all. Many New Zealanders struggle with consensus and compromise.
By contrast, consensus is an integral part of the Dutch culture. Even though the pro-abortion movement won out when the abortion laws were enacted in 1981, the Government offered the pro–life movement an opportunity to be involved in the counselling services. It is the same with the work VBOK does in providing a pro–life education programme, which reaches about a third of the students attending secondary schools in the Netherlands. As with the provision of counselling services, it is very hard to imagine the N.Z. Society for the Protection of the Unborn Child being allowed to take a pro–life education programme into one third of our state secondary schools without protest from teaching professionals.
While there are teachers prepared to allow school counsellors to take students to abortion clinics without the knowledge or consent of the girl's parents, there is often considerable intolerance towards those who promote chastity for young women.
In Holland there are teachers who say to VBOK we don't agree with your stand on the abortion issue but our students have the right to make up their own mind on this matter.
I am in no doubt that those students who have been given an opportunity to consider the programme provided by VBOK are in a better position to make an informed decision about the impact abortion could have on their own life or that of a friend than those deprived of such information. They are in a better position to evaluate for themselves the downside of abortion with its attendant physical and emotional complications. They are also in a better position to reflect on the value they consider should be placed on the life of a child before birth.
Given the widespread concern at abortions levels in many countries, it would surely be prudent to follow the lead set by the Netherlands in this regard.
Having studied the use of contraception in New Zealand and the Netherlands it seems to me there are two overriding issues. One concerns the methods that are used and the other concerns the extent to which contraception fails.
In comparing the use of contraception by women in their twenties and thirties in the Netherlands and New Zealand, two striking differences emerged:
• New Zealand women in their twenties place a much greater reliance on the condom than Dutch women despite the evidence that this method has a very high failure rate.
• New Zealand women in their thirties rely on sterilisation much more than Dutch women. Sterilisation has a significantly lower failure rate than the pill which is used by most of the Dutch women.
From the information available it seems there is not a significant difference in the extent to which teenagers at first intercourse in both countries rely on the pill, the condom or indeed non-use of contraception.
The other key feature concerns contraceptive failure. From my discussions with Dr Janey Rademakers it seems the Netherlands is absolutely up–front about contraceptive failure. In New Zealand, contraceptive failure is one of our best kept secret. A significant focus of the approach adopted in the Netherlands is to minimise levels of contraceptive failure. New Zealanders generally are unaware of the extent to which the condom and the pill can fail.
It was recently suggested in the New Zealand media that the condom had a high failure rate. Family Planning responded by saying it is irresponsible and misleading to claim that condoms fail.
In 1997 I met with Sue Ineson from the Family Planning Association and asked her why they keep on telling young people they can have sex safely if they used contraception when she knew as well as I did the extent to which it failed. Ms Ineson replied: “We don't say it is safe, we say it is safer.”
I replied: “When you say safer, they hear safe.”
Those countries which are serious about wanting to reduce levels of induced abortion have to take an honest and hard headed look at the extent to which so called 'efficient' contraception fails. People need to know they cannot rely on contraception and they need to know the risks they face if they do rely on them. The evidence is clearly set out in this report.
They also need to acknowledge the importance of teaching girls how to recognise the signs that tell them when they are ovulating.
The Family Planning Association
Another significant difference between New Zealand and the Netherlands is the status of the Family Planning Association. Dr Janey Rademakers told me the association plays a very small part in Dutch society today. Their role has been taken over by general practitioners.
That cannot be said of New Zealand where the Family Planning Association, is a major player in the whole spectrum of issues related to reproduction. It is the country's major pro–abortion agency, referring many women and girls for abortion from the network of clinics it operates throughout New Zealand. It also plays a major part in providing sex education resources for schools and sexuality courses for young adults.
Its power was displayed in an interesting way in 1999 over the issue of informed consent.
In 1998, when Bill English was the Minister of Health he published an informed consent booklet which was distributed to all GP's and medical centres as a resource to assist women who might be considering a termination of pregnancy. The booklet was the one which had originally been prepared for the Abortion Supervisory Committee and which had been dumped because staff in the abortion clinics did not want this informed consent booklet.
Bill English was to encounter a remarkable degree of intransigence from within his department when he wanted this book published. Staff from the Ministry of Health did all they could to block its publication.
Nevertheless, by October 1998, the Minister had achieved his objective. Some 25,000 copies of the informed consent booket had been published and distributed throughout New Zealand. The N.Z. Family Planning Association returned the copies it received.
The booklet was well received by most of the country's doctors. They found it helpful to have a simple, clear, neutral resource they could give to their patients. Providing patients with informed consent material is a standard part of medical practice in New Zealand today.
During 1999, Bill English moved out of health portfolio and became the Minister of Finance. Soon after he took up his new responsibilities, the Ministry of Health withdrew the informed consent booklet. When I rang the Ministry to ask about this I was told there had been complaints about it from the Family Planning Association which disputed the accuracy of the foetal photographs in the book. They had been taken by the world renowned medical photographer Lennart Nilsson. There were three photographs. They showed the foetus at the seventh, eleventh and twelfth week after conception.
Dutch cultural values
For all of that I have come to the conclusion that one of the most important difference between New Zealand and the Netherlands springs from those aspects of the Dutch culture which influence the extent to which teenagers and young women are sexually active outside a committed relationship.
Data provided in the Latten and de Graaf Report provided a picture of a country in which a surpringly large proportion of young women are prepared to safeguard their fertility and avoid the risks associated with premature and casual sexual relationships.
Similarly, the 1995 survey of 7,299 Dutch teenagers reported in Jeugd en seks — Youth and sex revealed a significant difference in the age at which young girls first become sexually active.
The research showed that young Dutch women are much less likely than New Zealanders to place themselves at risk. There appears to be a strong cultural emphasis on individual responsibility, on avoiding unplanned pregnancies and on respect for unborn life. Abortion is regarded as a last resort.
The data also showed that young Dutch women tend to be older than their New Zealand counterparts when they first become sexually active and those who enter into de facto relationships are much less likely to do so while they are still in their teens.
Those who argue that it is unrealistic to encourage young women to postpone becoming sexually active, need to think again. Convincing research from the Netherlands show it has happened there much more so than it has in New Zealand. This is taking place in a thriving, modern democratic country where the young people are intelligent and very well educated.
It provides a logical explanation as to why Holland has the lowest abortion rate in the Western world. It was Dr Janey Rademakers who said to me, “the more I talk to people from other countries, the more I think we are liberal but we have all kinds of boundaries.”
Last edited by Queen; May 4th 2004 at 01:44 AM.
May 4th 2004, 01:54 AM #112
procedures of termination of life on request and assisted suicide in the Netherlands
Just in case someone wants to know:
Review procedures of termination of life on request and assisted suicide and amendment to the Penal Code (Wetboek van Strafrecht) and the Burial and Cremation Act (Wet op de lijkbezorging)
We Beatrix, by the grace of God, Queen of the Netherlands, Princess of Oranje-Nassau, etc., etc. etc.
Greetings to all who shall see or hear these presents! Be it known:
Whereas We have considered that it is desired to include a ground for exemption from criminal liability for the physician who with due observance of the requirements of due care to be laid down by law terminates a life on request or assists in a suicide of another person, and to provide a statutory notification and review procedure;
We, therefore, having heard the Council of State, and in consultation with the States General, have approved and decreed as We hereby approve and decree:
Chapter I. Definitions of Terms
For the purposes of this Act:
Our Ministers mean the Ministers of Justice and of Health, Welfare and Sports;
assisted suicide means intentionally assisting in a suicide of another person or procuring for that other person the means referred to in Article 294 second pragraph, second sentence of the Penal code;
the physician means the physician who according to the notification has terminated a life on request or assisted in a suicide;
the consultant means the physician who has been consulted with respect to the intention by the physician to terminate a life on request or to assist in a suicide;
the providers of care mean the providers of care referred to in Article 446 first paragraph of Book 7 of the Civil Code (Burgerlijk Wetboek);
the committee means a regional review committee referred to in Article 3;
the regional inspector means the regional inspector of the Health Care Inspectorate of the Public Health Supervisory Service.
Chapter II. Requirements of Due Care
The requirements of due care, referred to in Article 293 second paragraph Penal Code mean that the physician:
holds the conviction that the request by the patient was voluntary and well-considered,
holds the conviction that the patient's suffering was lasting and unbearable,
has informed the patient about the situation he was in and about his prospects,
and the patient hold the conviction that there was no other reasonable solution for the situation he was in,
e. has consulted at least one other, independent physician who has seen the patient and has given his written opinion on the requirements of due care, referred to in parts a - d, and
has terminated a life or assisted in a suicide with due care.
If the patient aged sixteen years or older is no longer capable of expressing his will, but prior to reaching this condition was deemed to have a reasonable understanding of his interests and has made a written statement containing a request for termination of life, the physician may cant' out this request. The requirements of due care, referred to in the first paragraph, apply mutatis mutandis.
If the minor patient has attained an age between sixteen and eighteen years and may be deemed to have a reasonable understanding of his interests, the physician may cant' out the patient's request for termination of life or assisted suicide, after the parent or the parents exercising parental authority and/or his guardian have been involved in the decision process.
If the minor patient is aged between twelve and sixteen years and may be deemed to have a reasonable understanding of his interests, the physician may cant' out the patient's request, provided always that the parent or the parents exercising parental authority and/or his guardian agree with the termination of life or the assisted suicide. The second paragraph applies mutatis mutandis.
Chapter Ill. The Regional Review Committees for Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide.
Paragraph 1: Establishment, composition and appointment
There are regional committees for the review of notifications of cases of termination of life on request and assistance in a suicide as referred to in Article 293 second paragraph or 294 second paragraph second sentence, respectively, of the Penal Code.
A committee is composed of an uneven number of members, including at any rate one legal specialist, also chairman, one physician and one expert on ethical or philosophical issues'. The committee also contains deputy members of each of the, categories listed in the first sentence.
The chairman and the members, as well as the deputy members are appointed by Our Ministers for a period of six years. They may be re-appointed one time for another period of six years. `philosophical issues' -- in the original text the Dutch word `zingevingsvraagstukken' is used to describe the discussion on the prerequisites for a meaningful life.
A committee has a secretary and one or more deputy secretaries, all legal specialists, appointed by Our Ministers. The secretary has an advisory role in the committee meetings.
The secretary may solely be held accountable by the committee for his activities for the committee.
Paragraph 2: Dismissal
Our Ministers may at any time dismiss the chairman and the members, as well as the deputy members at their own request.
Our Ministers may dismiss the chairman and the members, as well as the deputy members for reasons of unsuitability or incompetence or for other important reasons.
Paragraph 3: Remuneration
The chairman and the members, as well as the deputy members receive a holiday allowance as well as a reimbursement of the travel and accommodation expenses according to the existing government scheme insofar as these expenses are not otherwise reimbursed from the State Funds.
Paragraph 4: Duties and powers
The committee assesses on the basis of the report referred to in Article 7 second paragraph of the Burial and Cremation Act whether the physician who has terminated a life on request or assisted in a suicide has acted in accordance with the requirements of due care, referred to in Article 2.
The committee may request the physician to supplement his report in writing or verbally, where this is necessary for a proper assessment of the physician's actions.
The committee may make enquiries at the municipal autopsist, the consultant or the providers of care involved where this is necessary for a proper assessment of the physician's actions.
The committee informs the physician within six weeks of the receipt of the report referred to in Article 8 first paragraph in writing of its motivated opinion.
The committee informs the Board of Procurators General and the regional health care inspector of its opinion:
if the committee is of the opinion that the physician has failed to act in accordance with the requirements of due care, referred to in Article 2;
if a situation occurs as referred to in Article 12, final sentence of the Burial and Cremation Act.
The committee shall inform the physician of this.
The term referred to in the first paragraph may be extended one time by a maximum period of six weeks. The committee shall inform the physician of this.
The committee may provide a further, verbal explanation on its opinion to the physician. This verbal explanation may take place at the request of the committee or at the request of the physician.
The committee is obliged to provide all information to the public prosecutor, at his request, which he may need:
for the benefit of the assessment of the physician's actions in the case referred to in Article 9 second paragraph;or
for the benefit of a criminal investigation.
The committee shall inform the physician of any provision of information to the public prosecutor.
Paragraph 6: Working method
The committee shall ensure the registration of the cases of termination of life or assisted suicide reported for assessment. Further rules on this may be laid down by a ministerial regulation by Our Ministers.
An opinion is adopted by a simple majority of votes.
An opinion may only be adopted by the committee provided all committee members have participated in the vote.
At least twice a year, the chairmen of the regional review committees conduct consultations with one another with respect to the working method and the performance of the committees. A representative of the Board of Procurators General and a representative of the Health Care Inspectorate of the Public Health Supervisory Service are invited to attend these consultations.
Paragraph 7: Secrecy and Exemption
The members and deputy members of the committee are under an obligation of secrecy to keep confidential any information acquired in the performance of their duties, except where any statutory regulation obliges them to divulge this information or where the necessity to divulge information ensues from their duties.
A member of the committee that serves on the committee in the treatment of a case exempts himself and may be challenged if there are facts or circumstances that may affect the impartiality of his opinion.
A member, a deputy member and the secretary of the committee refrain from rendering an opinion on the intention by a physician to terminate a life on request or to assist in a suicide.
Paragraph 8: Report
Not later than 1 April, the committees issue a joint annual report to Our Ministers on the activities of the past calendar year. Our Ministers shall lay down a model for this by means of a ministerial regulation.
The report on the activities referred to in the first paragraph shall at any rate include the following:
the number of reported cases of termination of life on request and assisted suicide on which the committee has rendered an opinion;
the nature of these cases;
the opinions and the considerations involved.
Annually, at the occasion of the submission of the budget to the States General, Our Ministers shall issue a report with respect to the performance of the committees further to the report on the activities as referred to in Article 17 first paragraph.
On the recommendation of Our Ministers, rules shall be laid down by order in council regarding the committees with respect to
their number and their territorial jurisdiction;
Our Ministers may lay down further rules by or pursuant to an order in council regarding the committees with respect to
their size and composition;
their working method and reports.
Chapter IV. Amendments to other Acts
The Penal Code shall be amended as follows:
Article 293 shall read:
Any person who terminates another person's life at that person's express and earnest request shall be liable to a term of imprisonment not exceeding twelve years or a fifth-category fine.
The act referred to in the first paragraph shall not be an offence if it committed by a physician who fulfils the due care criteria set out in Article 2 of the Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide (Review Procedures) Act, and if the physician notifies the municipal pathologist of this act in accordance with the provisions of Article 7, paragraph 2 of the Burial and Cremation Act.
Article 294 shall read:
Any person who intentionally incites another to commit suicide shall, if suicide follows, be liable to a term of imprisonment not exceeding three years or a fine of the fourth-category fine.
Any person who intentionally assist another to commit suicide or provides him with the means to do shall, if suicide follows, be liable to a term of imprisonment not exceeding three years or a fourth-category fine. Article 293, paragraph 2 shall apply mutatis mutandis.
In Article 295, the following is inserted after '293': first paragraph.
In Article 422, the following is inserted after '293': first paragraph.
The Burial and Cremation Act shall be amended as follows:
Article 7 shall read:
A person who has performed a postmortem shall issue a death certificate if he is convinced that death has occurred as a result of a natural cause.
If the death was the result of the application of termination of life on request or assisted suicide as referred to in Article 293 second paragraph or Article 294 second paragraph second sentence, respectively, of the Penal Code, the attending physician shall not issue a death certificate and shall promptly notify the municipal autopsist or one of the municipal autopsists of the cause of death by completing a form. The physician shall supplement this form with a reasoned report with respect to the due observance of the requirements of due care referred to in Article 2 of the Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide (Review Procedures) act.
If the attending physician in other cases than referred to in the second paragraph believes that he may not issue a death certificate, he must promptly notify the municipal autopsist or one of the municipal autopsists of this by completing a form.
Article 9 shall read:
The form and the set-up of the models of the death certificate to be issued by the attending physician and by the municipal autopsist shall be laid down by order in council.
The form and the set-up of the models of the notification and the report referred to in Article 7 second paragraph, of the notification referred to in Article 7 third paragraph and of the forms referred to in Article 10 first and second paragraph shall be laid down by order in council on the recommendation of Our Minister of Justice and Our Minister of Health, Welfare and Sports.
Article 10 shall read:
If the municipal autopsist is of the opinion that he cannot issue a death certificate, he shall promptly report this to the public prosecutor by completing a form and he shall promptly notify the registrar of births, deaths and marriages.
In the event of a notification as referred to in Article 7 second paragraph and without prejudice to the first paragraph, the municipal autopsist shall promptly report to the regional review committee referred to in Article 3 of the Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide (Review Procedures) Act by completing a form. He shall enclose a reasoned report as referred to in Article 7 second paragraph.
The following sentence shall be added to Article 12, reading: If the public prosecutor, in the cases referred to in Article 7 second paragraph, is of the opinion that he cannot issue a certificate of no objection against the burial or cremation, he shall promptly inform the municipal autopsist and the regional review committee referred to in Article 3 of the Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide (Review Procedures) Act of this.
In Article 81, first part, '7, first paragraph' shall be replaced by '7, first and second paragraph'.
The General Administrative Law Act (Algemene wet bestuursrecht) shall be amended as follows:
At the end of part d of Article 1:6, the full stop shall be replaced by a semicolon and the following shall be added to the fifth part, reading:
e. decisions and actions in the implementation of the Termination of Life and Assisted Suicide (Review Procedures) Act.
Chapter V. Final Provisions
This Act shall take effect as of a date to be determined by Royal Decree.
This Act may be cited as: Termination of Life on Request and Assisted Suicide (Review Procedures) Act.
We hereby order and command that this Act shall be published in the Bulletin of Acts and Decrees and that all ministerial departments, authorities, bodies and officials whom it may concern shall diligently implement it.
The Minister of Justice,
The Minister of Health, Welfare and Sports.
Upper House, parliamentary year 2000-2001, 26 691, no 137
May 4th 2004, 10:07 AM #113Originally posted by Queen
You DO NOT see all life as equal. It would be impossible for you to see all life as equal - because you would end up dead. And I was calling you an this statement - not your way of life.
And again you refeused to answer questions put forth.
May 4th 2004, 10:35 AM #114Originally posted by deepwillidig
The whole picture that I was referring to was the reality of already living, breathing and sometimes suffering beings who need our attention.
May 4th 2004, 11:15 AM #115Originally posted by ajohnson
The fact that I need food to survive and I need medication or else I would indeed die doesn't make me feel differently about all life. That would be silly, doesn't it. Because I respect all life......and see it as equal. All life started out the same way and every creature is unique through evolution. Every living creature is struggling to survive. No difference between any one of them. THAT makes them equal. And every living creature in this universe is still evolving. The fact that some humans think that they are special is selfish and nonsense. Because we are just part of the universe and, if I might add, not that special. Because we lack respect for our own species....something most species on this planet have. We think, therefor we are dangerous to this planet. And that we think that we know the truth is totally arrogant.
So, yes...all life is equal.......simple how my mind works, isn't it.
May 4th 2004, 03:52 PM #116Originally posted by studyhoundOriginally posted by anthrogirlHow can I understand God, when I haven't even achieved pure virtue?
May 4th 2004, 05:02 PM #117
No fear of picturesOriginally posted by Ramonda
Can you make the case that the unborn is not living?
Can you make the case that breathing is morally significant?
Can you make the case that if the unborn doesn't suffer it cannot be harmed?
Unless you can defend these notions, you have given me no reason to think abortion is justified. But notice, that whether born children starve and suffer neglect has no bearing on whether the unborn is human. So shoulddn't we answer this question before discussing admittedly horrible social circumstances?
May 4th 2004, 05:16 PM #118
human rightsOriginally posted by Love-Warrior
In short, I don't think human beings are valuable because they are persons. I think they are valuable because they are human. Historically, distinguishing between person and human has resulted in discrimination against certain humans who are weak or defenseless (see http://www.cbrinfo.org/Resources/abortion.html). It seems that if we can rule over a group of people, we call them non-persons so that we can oppress them with a clear conscience.
In contrast, one fact leads me to believe we are valuable in virtue of the kind of thing we are. That fact is this: human beings should be treated equally. When people assent to this rule, they usually mean "born people." That's fine with me. We know only equals should be treated equally. Yet, there is nothing about all of the born humans that is truly equal. We differ in size, development, dependency, location, interests, pain sensitivity, desires, skin color, ethnic identity, disabilities, and intelligence. But there is one significant quality that we have that is equal: our human nature. Notice that all of the differences between us are degreed qualities (we can have more or less) and are accidental properties (we can gain and lose). But notice also that our human nature is *not* a degreed or accidental property. It is something you either have or don't have. This is the sort of thing that must ground equal rights if they are to be equal. If degreed properties ground our rights, then we will also have those rights to a greater or lesser degree.
Grounding our rights in human nature seems to make sense of one other thing: our incessant focus on "human" rights. Notice we don't use the phrase "person rights." Perhaps this is for linguistic ease, but I think it reflects our concern for humans as humans. We are not concerned about genocide or murder or rape or inequality because of the accidental properties of the victims. We think nothing of their intelligence or whether they were as self-aware as a chimpanzee. These crimes are crimes against humanity. And we describe it that way for a reason. We believe that humans have a special dignity.
But notice, we have our human nature from the moment we begin to exist. It can't be something developed or degreed. It is this all or nothing characteristic of human nature that makes it a stable ground for human rights claims. We either have it or we don't. And as newly conceived human beings, we surely had it. This is why I focus so much on whether the unborn is a *human* being. If she is, she should be protected. Of course, science shows clearly that she is human (having a human DNA structure and human parents), so surely she should be protected (for more reasons to believe the unborn is a human being, see http://www.theologyweb.com/forum/sho...859#post538859). The struggle to protect the unborn is then really no different than the struggle to protect the African-American, the Jew, the disabled person, or the elderly. All have an underlying similarity that defies the external differences: they are human beings.
Originally posted by Love-Warrior
Last edited by deepwillidig; May 4th 2004 at 05:21 PM. Reason: title
May 4th 2004, 05:26 PM #119
maybe we're getting somewhere...Originally posted by ajohnson
There is an extreme pro-life position, according to which there are compelling arguments (based on continuity from baby to fetus to embryo) why we must treat embryos right back to the moment of conception as human with full right-to-life, and the claim is that these arguments are so strong that any rational person should agree with them.
The first thing I am saying is that the continuity argument is not so convincing that any rational person ought to be pro-life.
The second thing I am saying is that actually this extreme pro-life position is difficult to follow consistently, because awarding the embryo these rights implies that one should do much more than just advocate an end to voluntary abortion: one should try to save the much larger number of these embryos that perish through "natural" causes.
Originally posted by ajohnson
Originally posted by ajohnson
I was just saying that rights and laws typically involve somewhat arbitrary thresholds and dividing lines, and it is not unreasonable to treat the right to life in the same way.
I am saying that continuity of baby to fetus to embryo is not an argument, in and of itself, for treating all of them the same way under the law.
Originally posted by steadele
May 4th 2004, 07:15 PM #120
It'll be a few days before I can get back to you. Say, around Thurdsay - evening.
By Epoetker in forum Civics 101Replies: 0Last Post: September 4th 2009, 05:16 PM
By Trout in forum Editorial Dept.Replies: 75Last Post: July 2nd 2007, 12:05 AM
By Bill the Cat in forum Civics 101Replies: 25Last Post: June 23rd 2006, 12:48 AM
By The Laughing Man in forum Civics 101Replies: 47Last Post: May 3rd 2005, 04:07 PM