I understand that people have the right to freedom of speech and freedom to assemble and protest, and I'm all for that, but some of the stuff that these "Pro-life" people have done has been absolutely fucking insane.
I know there have been incidents of violence, terrorism, and threats from people who are all for saving the human life. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-abortion_violence
I also have personall experience with this. I was recently walking my seven year old brother and his friend to Party City to get Halloween costumes and I let them go ahead. I turned the corner and I saw this lady speaking to fucking seven year olds about being pro-life and how abortion is murder. These kids hardly even know what abortion is, so I went up and took them and walked away. I didn't want a confrontation, but the fucking cook kept following me and pressing her ideas down seven year olds throats. That's just fucked up, she needs to mind he own business. I know some people will say she should be trying to convince seven year olds, but I don't think protestor towards little kids is right or ethical.
I guess what I'm getting at is, for people who are so "Pro-life" and good, they have harrassed people, and done much worse.
I'm not saying they don't have the right to protest, just what some of them do is completely fucked up, and having them harass seven year old boys just isnt' right.
EDIT: What does religion have to do with abortion? It's not stated in the bible and I really just can't understand why the protestors carry crosses.
Aren't there any normal reasonable people who are pro-life in America? There must be.
I myself am pro-life and pro-choice at the same time.
I know. In my country it's not a major issue so there hasn't been any of those crazy protests and rhetoric Josh described.
Basically, my thoughts are these:
First, I believe a fetus is more than just a woman's body part even though it's technically not a human, so it should have at least some rights. Not because of a religious believe as I am sort of an atheist (although the whole "killing one man means killing an entire world" really appeals to me and is the basis of my opinion). Basically, a fetus might not be a human now (less than 3 months of pregnancy, as discussed in another thread) but it will be. That has to count for something right?
So that is why I think there should be laws and codes that exactly define what are and aren't a fetus's rights. I guess the best way to describe my thoughts is to talk about animal rights. Legally, they aren't human but they aren't possessions either. They are defined as something in between and so law makers defined a list of legal rights especially for them. In a similar way I don't think fetuses are entirely human like what I understand many pro-life activists in the US claim, and I don't think they are entirely body parts/parasites like many pro-choice activists claim. Why does it have to be a zero-sum game?
To be more specific: I think there are are a couple of reasons why someone would want an abortion:
a. the fetus is compromising the health of the mother - in which case I am entirely pro-choice.
b. the fetus is discovered to have a health issue (i.e. genetic disease like doun syndrome, some disability etc) - in this case I have some reservations but am generally pro-choice.
c. if a couple decides on having a baby but something happens during the pregnancy (i.e. their marriage breaks apart, etc) - then I am also pro choice as their choice weather to abort or not was after a discussion between them and completely thought through.
d. if the pregnancy was an accident, especially of a minor - then I think I am mainly pro-life but not sure. First, if the woman is a minor how is she supposed to make a decisions like that? If she's not mature enough to vote or even drive, how on earth can she make such a decision on her own? Second, and this is the most important reason, in any case of abortion, but especially in an accidental pregnancies, the man has no say whatsoever in the decision. In the other cases at least in theory there was a discussion between the couple because the pregnancy was planed by both of them so the decision to abort is also a mutual one. I mean, if a woman decides to "steal sperm" the man has to pay alimony for the rest of his life but a woman could just as easily decide to abort without him even knowing let alone discussing the matter. I just think there's something wrong with that. Obviously I'm not advocating that a man can force a woman to have or not have an abortion. I'm saying that the rights of the mother and father should be readdressed regarding the decision to abort and the responsibilities on the child. I don't know exactly how though. That isn't something I have a well formed idea about.
You say that a fetus is not technically human, but consider this, a fetus has all qualities required for it to be considered living and also contains unique dna that is possesed by no other living thing on the planet. It could be said that the fetuses dependence on the mother for life makes it not human as it cannot survive on its own, but that dependence doesn't go away after birth, through the first year a child is highly dependent upon another human being, its mother, to provide it with what it requires for life.
I don't oppose abortion on religious terms, sure the bible says no murder, blah, blah, blah, but I think that that is common human morality and we shouldn't have to be told that. I oppose abortion because from a purely scientific, social, and moral point of view it is wrong.
I'm strictly pro-life in that I believe abortion is murder, but it's not like I go around and tell women who have had abortions that they are murderors, they've gone through enough already. I believe that women who have abortions don't see themselves as murderors and as a result cannot be held accountable for the action as such.
T'was replying to Verty, just so you know ; )
But to your point
And yet, the fetus is connected to the mother. The fetus is not independent, the fetus is not mentally aware. It cannot form a cognitive thought, it cannot sustain itself if you were to take it from the wombs environment without putting it within a test tube, therefore to suggest that the fetus is anything as like equal to a Human being, is complete and utter nonsense. It belongs to the mother, it is her responability, and her choice alone as to decide whether or not she should carry it to the end.
No one can move to override that Woman's freedom of choice, and still call themselves moral beings.
i'm not disputing the science. But it will become a human in the future, and I believe that has to count for something. maybe not equal to a human, but more than just a body part.
Moreover, shouldn't the father have at least some say in this, since he helped make it and the decision will affect the rest of his life?
The future is not now. Now, it is but a fetus, and the Woman's sole responability as to whether or not she keeps it. The fact that it needs sustained by the mother means that its simply another organism inside her. Meaning, she has the choice as to whether or not she keeps it.
As for the father, unless he can pop that fetus inside himself, he has no say whether she keeps the child. Although, if a Woman keeps said child, and the father was against it in the first place, I see no reason for him to pay for the kid when its being forced upon him.
As I said, I'm not disputing the science of it. I know that technically it's not a real human (although even that can can be argued as this is a question that digs into our core definitions of what does it mean to be human and what does it mean to be alive - which is another discussion altogether). The thing is, that fetus WILL become a human in the future, simply saying "well that's the future not now" is making it too simplistic. I just feel that becoming a human in the future has to be worth some rights. Look, I'm not saying abortion should be illegal completely, just that there needs to be some certain laws and regulations. For one it should be mandatory for a social worker to participate in the process.
And as for your second point, the law doesn't agree with you. If you are the father of a child, you should bare responsibility for it (unless you forfeit it like with adoptions). It is not a pet, but a living human child so it's needs come before yours. Which is why I believe the father must participate in the process of the decision about weather to abort or not (rape cases put aside as they are a special case). Obviously he can't force a woman to have the child, but there should at least be discussions with him in it.
In a perfect world I'd also say that there should be better accommodations and explanations about adoptions so people might not imagine Oliver Twist style orphanages or something. I don't know though, it depends on the country and laws regarding adoptions.