Reply

OC,

When I’m reading your writing I get the impression that you’re actually buying into the half-truths and partial logical narratives. Alternately it’s as if you’re ADD and don’t get to the substance before you get busy and moved on to other thoughts so you just write a witty conclusion and push send. Could that be the case – despite your little insult about us being the kids? Worse – and I’m not saying this is your situation – it appears that you don’t know you’re not making the case – that you’re omitting substance. Perhaps  you don’t consider us thoughtful opponents so you don’t need to say much to us. In any of these cases my solution is to respond to what you’ve written and tell you more about why I think you’re incorrect. So here goes:

RE: “No RTL commits violence, by definition” That’s exactly what muslims say about muslim terrorists. “They’re not really muslims because islam is peace, by definition!” It flops for muslims, and it flops for you.

We have to disagree here. The “Flop” you hear is the logical flip-flop required to explain your opinion. Let’s examine “I’m Muslim; Islam is a religion of peace; I am peaceful; therefore Muslim terrorists are poor Muslims and don’t reflect on me.” This logic stands. A person who breaks the ethics of their group (premise #3) does not redefine the group’s ethic. They repudiate it.

I hold and you disagree that persons of any faith background can know abortion as its practiced now is a horrible wrong. If any of those persons claim to be ProLife and then commit a violent act it does not somehow support the theory that we’re all violent.

Moving on: you say government doesn’t inflict childbirth on women. That’s true today, because USA is pro-choice. If, however, government were to prevent a woman who wanted an abortion from getting one, then that government WOULD BE inflicting childbirth upon her.

Sir, Could you believe that the government doesn’t cause childbirth (let alone inflict it)? Sex causes childbirth.

It’s like, I see that a piano is falling towards me. I try to get out of the way. You block me, and becuase I can’t get out of the way, the piano kills me. Then you say “I didn’t kill OC; it was the piano!”

This analogy is only apt if you continue it to where the pregnant woman (not you) is lifting the piano with her own hands (sex). She then discovers that this force of nature that she put in place – the potential energy of the falling object (the natural process of procreation) is difficult and that the rope is slipping. The man involved has pulled the rope but can be partially, completely or possibly maliciously clear of the piano’s path of fall.

I cannot be faulted for “blocking the way.” If anything I’m putting up a fence around the piano lifting site with warning signs that say “If you lift the piano you might find its heavy.” Girls who accompany their boyfriend into the fence are often surprised at how this culture has lied to them.

Another flaw to your analogy is that most (80%+) abortions occur when there is no danger to the health let alone the life of the mother. They’re done for social and economic reasons. This clearly weighs against the argument that we’re putting women in danger then blocking their exit path. You argue that the very inconvenience of pregnancy –even a healthy one – warrants a woman’s right to kill the child. Reasonable people can disagree but in your explanation there is no substance.

And I am still not an anarchist; I am an ADVOCATE OF LIMITED GOVERNMENT. You know, like the Founding Fathers, and the folks who signed Magna Carta. You, I assume, object to the Chinese “one-child-per-family” law. Does that make you an anarchist? No.

Sir, I claim the right to this slight exaggeration of the very apt one word condensation of your (admitted as yet undiagnosed by a licensed philosopher) proclivity toward severely limited government as “anarchy.” If you do not allow me this then you have no literary license to call me a “murderer.” No?

Even if your heroes are Alexis de Tocqueville or Robert Heinlein’s characters there are few true anarchists. The problem is that you’re selective. Hollywood’s cinematic folks correctly depicted Heinlein’s most free society as racists (or more correctly xenophobic) NeoNazis. From where we stand that amount of government control of life is unthinkable. However there are things that government does and it varies on the situation. Your declaration for limited government is dishonest when you and I know that sometimes you declare war, outlaw a drug, tax a product or ban (that word again) an unwarranted medical procedure.

You say “government can and should protect and regulate the good”. Well, sobriety is good. So should government re-institute prohibition of alcohol? If not, why not?

Again you cite the extreme. From where you view things – or at least from how you present them – you are the anarchist proclaiming any government action beyond defending the coasts and delivering the mail as intrusionist. I firmly believe we should raise the drinking age to 25 and make is a serious felony to furnish alcohol to a minor. There’s no chance of that in today’s society, however I see good science and practical experience support this. There’s less chance prohibition even as shaky as the last attempt would ever be enacted much less succeed. It’s not the government’s role like regulation and discouraging (banning!) abortion should be.

I suspect we actually agree more in this area than you’d like to hear right now. But this isn’t about political philosophy it’s about a specific – abortion.

Almost forgot–you say right-to-lifist is only 1/100 of the violence committed by pro-choicers? So far, pro-choicers have murdered ZERO right-to-lifers, bombed ZERO right-to-lifist workplaces, etc.

Sir, You have missed the argument. If you get to say that Scott Roeder is a Right-to-Life activist (and he is not; the necessity defense cannot and should not apply) then I clearly can use the data on violence by Abortion Rights activists. Deflating that data by 99% I still get more violence by Abortion activists than Anti-Abortion activists.

Finally please comment on the essay concerning abortion prayer activism as a protective circle around clinics. You won’t like it but comment on the human power of people who say “violence hurts everyone so we won’t and we’ll stand here – possibly being subject to violence – to say that.” You don’t have to concede that the prayer part works; just the physical realities protect people.

PLEEEEZ try to argue on a higher level. I already spend too much time explaining things to kids.

I do trust that if you do this ‘splainin’ as part of paid employment that you have proctors, supervisors and other paid staff present to keep you from warping the poor little ones’ minds. It is a professional hazard for the teacher that they can get to pontificating instead of teaching the skills of critical listening and analysis. At least you are serving as a bad example for the brighter of them.

And I’m not proposing to “re-define” marriage. I’m proposing to DE-define it, and let the participants do the defining in future.

As I wrote previously “marriage” is already defined. Go choose another word. This one is taken. Its participants have correctly and properly understood its definition for hundreds of generations. Your “de” is just “re” with you getting to choose the new definition. Even more ironically you the anarchist are asking the government to do the redefining.

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23 Responses to Reply

  1. Laura says:

    Is OC saying we’re murderers because of that piano analogy? Isn’t that like holding us responsible for all auto accidents, including drunk driving incidents, because we happen to own cars and believe that vehicle operation laws are prudent, reasonable and just?

  2. [editor’s note. Good job OC. Your views are – more or less – clearly expressed. However, I’m not making much headway at helping you see your errors but you have done great work at explaining them. There is very little chance that you’ve done any convincing of others to your views.
    My only question.; won’t you be a bit tired when you tend to those young impressionables today?
    peace. -DE]

    RE: “non violent by definition”.

    So you’re saying you ACCEPT it when muslims say Osama bin Laden isn’t really a Muslim because he’s not peaceful??? You ACCEPT the claim that 9111 had nothing to do with Islam, at least, nothing to do with REAL Islam? You accept the claim that those muslims who kill ex-muslims in obedience to instructions from the Koran and from their Imams, are not really muslims? Wow. How far does it go? Can I burn a cross on a black person’s lawn in the deep south, and then say “that wasn’t violent because the cross is by definition a symbol of peace”? How about when Russian Communists say: “Communism by definition means prosperity, so it wasn’t really Communism which made USSR an economic basket-case, because that wasn’t real Communism, and we know this because real Communism would BY DEFINITION have brought prosperity?” Would you listen to such gobbledygook? But you are making the same argument about yourself!

    RE: “SEX causes childbirth”. That’s not quite the whole story, is it? What causes childbirth is sex PLUS not getting an abortion. In the falling-piano example, sure, the person who pushed the piano out the window would be responsible, but, you who stop me from getting out of the way would ALSO be responsible. There’s blame to go around.

    You wrote: “I cannot be faulted for “blocking the way.” If anything I’m putting up a fence around the piano lifting site with warning signs that say “If you lift the piano you might find its heavy.””

    That’s not the whole story either. You are also putting up signs that say “If you lift the piano, and find it’s uncomfortably heavy, and try to put it down again, then I will have you arrested and jailed, and perhaps charged with murder or whatever” (hard to be exact about what punishment you’re threatening to inflict for putting down the piano–you won’t answer questions about punishment, for reasons best known to yourself).

    RE: “Another flaw to your analogy is that most (80%+) abortions occur when there is no danger to the health let alone the life of the mother.”

    Sure, being forced to give birth is not as bad as being killed by a falling piano. The point of the piano was to illustrate that by stopping me from preventing X, you become responsible for X. Sheesh. Just because I make an illustrative parallel between two things does not mean I’m saying they’re the same. Analogy is not the same as equation, and metaphor is something else again, a little like simile. If you are smart enough to read Aquinas, then you should already understand this!

    RE: literary licence. So your position seems to be, you admit that I am not an anarchist, but you claim the right to exaggerate and call me one anyway? Well, I’m sure you’re not a child molester, but I’m gonna take literary licence and call YOU one anyway. And I’m gonna tell your boss that you are one, and your neighbors, and your parents, and your church-officers, and your fellow churchgoers, and the cops, and the judge, and the jury. If YOU want licence to exaggerate, then you must give the same to me. Maybe I’ll tell them you’re a child molester BY DEFINITION.

    RE: the data on violence by abortion-activists. WHAT data? WHAT violence? Committed by whom? Occasionally, a right-to-lifer gets assaulted by an angry patient or whatever. Some right-to-lifers have even suffered serious injury because of such assaults. A week or so ago, a patient threatened a protester with a knife! Oooooooooh. Cry me a liver. Where are the anti-right-to-lifist workplace shootings, the in-church shootings, the home-snipings, the bombings, the arsons, the blockading of workplaces, the public group-prayers for opponents to suffer “execution” and “calamity”? There are none, except for one outlying blog, one lone voice crying in the wilderness for justice and equality, or, if that’s too much to ask, just the proverbial level playing-field.

    Do please say where you are getting your “data” on violence by abortion-activists. (I could make a pretty shrewd guess, but I’d rather you tell me.)

    RE: Prayer circle around abortion clinics. Your argument was correct at one time, when anti-abortion terror was just a drawing-room hypothetical and there was no reason for abortion workers to fear unknown right-to-lifers. But today, anti-abortion terrorist activity is rampant and regular. Your particular group may BE non-violent, but the patients and workers have no way of knowing that. Every unknown must be assumed to be dangerous, and you are morally responsible for understanding that you MIGHT appear violent and therefore backing the f*ck off. Sure, you have free-speech rights, but in a climate of regular terrorist threats, you should not be choosing to EXERCISE those free speech right. Suppose you were getting regularly beaten up by a gang of Irish immigrants. Would you want other Irish immigrants following you around saying “Well I’M not violent”??? How about “Well I’m not violent, but, the violence against you is no worse than your work” (that’s the longer version of “abortion is murder”).

    Turning to the practical question, no, right-to-life picketers and protesters do nothing to stop or prevent violence. They don’t make anyone safer, and they don’t make anyone FEEL safer. They make it necessarity for security to waste time and energy monitoring them, which makes everyone LESS safe. And they present other risks as well: patients have to worry that they may being photographed or whatever, which compromises confidentiality.

    If your goal really is to make everyone feel safer, you can accomplish that by spending your time elsewhere. Sending money to help your local abortion clinic pay for security costs wouldn’t hurt, either.

    RE: Prohibition. No, I’m not citing an extreme case. Your argument “Government can, and should, regulate the good” leads directly to prohibiton, of alcohol in the past, but equally outrageous prohibitions today. I can decide what I experience as good without any help from Uncle Sam, thank you very much. Uncle Sam should spend his time regulating what is DANGEROUS, not what is good.

    RE: explaining to kids. Yes, it’s part of my professional work, and no, I’m not supervised. One-on-one. The parents are in the apartment and within shouting distance but usually not in the room (although that’s up to the pupil).

    RE: Marriage. You are right, marriage is already defined. And one thing it does NOT mean is: married by Catholic priests. The Catholic Church gave up her authority to solemnise and validate real marriages a long time ago. There are no married Catholics alive today, only Catholics who mistakenly believe themselves to be married. (It follows that all Catholic children are illegitimate.)

    Finally: Robert Heinlein??? Please. There maybe a more over-rated writer somewhere in world history, but I can’t think of one right now. Ayn Rand is worse, but at least every one ADMITS she sucks; same with JK Rowling. OK, here’s a more undeserving one: Hugh Lofting (author of the original DOCTOR DOOLITTLE. I say “undeserving” rather than “overrated” because no one reads the original any more, happily.) Oh, and another: Madeline L’Engle–someone I know characterized her work as “worse than Harriet the Spy, in Mordor where the Shadows Lie”. Jack London is severely overrated, too.

  3. Laura says:

    Matt – “Abortion as it’s practiced now…” – PLEASE address the implicit suggestion that abortion could ever be not horrible, if we’d just find a better way of doing it?

  4. Laura says:

    OC – you are still seriously wrong when you speak of pregnancy as a pathological, parasitical condition. Being pregnant after sex is natural and healthy; NOT being pregnant is the pathology. Procreation is THE primary goal of sexual intercourse; I think only human beings enjoy it at times other than the female’s estrus, when Nature compels other animals to mate.

    Human beings, on the other hand, have taken sex and exploited it for personal gratification, mass marketing, and other wholly selfish uses – without regard to its unitive value or its role in creating new life.

    In fact, I rather suspect that men support abortion “rights” not out of a concern for women’s rights, but out of a selfish desire to be able to access uncomplicated, consequence-free sex on demand.

    [Laura, you don’t have to suspect it. It’s fact. It’s such an obvious fact that – like water to a fish – it’s lost on many people. – DE]

  5. Laura, your above post contains two errors. I’ll address them in opposite order:

    1. RE: “Only humans enjoy sex other than during the female’s estrus”

    Have you ever watched dogs frolicing in the park? They try to bone each other ALL THE TIME! The males try to bone other males! Haven’t you ever been embarrassed by a friend’s dog trying to hump your leg? Were you experiencing estrus at the time?

    2. RE: “…when you speak of pregnancy as a pathological, parasitical condition”

    Only one problem here: I have NEVER spoken of pregnancy as a pathological, parasitical condition. As you say, it’s normal, not pathological, and it’s not parasitical because parasites are by definition of different species from their hosts, but the fetus is the same species as the mother. I don’t say pregnancy is pathological nor parasitical. I say only that it is DANGEROUS. And it is!

    And if my support for abortion rights is supposed to get me uncomplicated, consequence-free sex, it’s not working. No, I support abortion rights because forcing a woman to endure childbirth is an unconscionable violation.

  6. Matt, you forgot to post where you are getting your “data” about “violence by abortion advocates”. Did you forget, [blah, blah, blah… edited – DE]

    [OC, try our previous posts. Some of the same ones you may think you’ve rebutted but that you don’t know much about.
    I have read your website; even as it is – laced with non sequiturs and rude unhelpful language. You at least could take a look around here for some content. – DE]

  7. Laura says:

    Well, it’s certainly not a Politically Correct statement, to be sure. Odd how the radical feminists have sold out our female dignity, in the name of female liberty, by rendering us worse sex objects than we were before.

  8. Laura says:

    Trying again:
    Matt wrote: “I hold and you disagree that persons of any faith background can know abortion as its practiced now is a horrible wrong.”

    I’m afraid this is a misleading statement, in that little clause, “as it’s practiced now.”

    It doesn’t matter HOW abortion is practiced. If science could come up with a way to cleanly, painlessly, simply scoop out the fully intact baby – even in the earliest stages where the development is yet wholly unrecognizable – it would still be the willful taking of an innocent human life –

    and it would still be “a horrible wrong.” World without end. Amen.

    [To clarify: “as its is practiced now” = “horribly freely and without remorse.” I do not suggest that abortion is ever now or ever has been a moral good. -DE]

  9. Hmmm. Matt seems to be censoring my answers to you again, Laura. Sorry.

    [OC, Nope. I’m just having a life. Can’t sit here waiting for your pithy comments. -DE]

  10. Laura says:

    OC –
    (1) If humans are reduced to treating sex as an exercise in establishing pack dominance, then we as a whole human race are in terrible shape and worse trouble. (Granted, I’m not sure that what Madison Avenue, Hugh Hefner, et al. have conspired to give us isn’t equally bad, or perhaps worse).

    (2) EVERYTHING is dangerous. Getting out of bed in the morning is dangerous; for some people, getting into bed at night is. The point is, pregnancy is generally a very healthy condition, one for which women’s bodies are designed. Elective abortion has a far greater mortality and morbidity rate than normal pregnancy, childbirth, and even spontaneous miscarriage.

    Have you ever been pregnant? I have. I’ve given birth twice and miscarried once. And prior to that I was told I probably would not be able to have children – a situation I assure you far more painful, more distressing, and grievous than anything that followed.

    Life is hard. Life is full of risks. We take them anyway. For a woman to whine about enduring a pregnancy she basically volunteered her body for, in having consensual sex, is cowardly and selfish. To decide that her convenience is of greater importance than another person’s life is unconscionable.

    For a man to support such an attitude is selfish, imprudent, and weak – a dishonor to both my sex and the best calling of his own to be strong, decisive, and a protector of the weaker. If I were a man, I’d be ashamed to own such an attitude as you express.

    Oh – and Matt has no need to censor any comment you may make to me; if he feels something you say is inappropriate for the general audience here (which includes people of all ages, including minors) then he will, I am sure, contact me behind scenes and make me aware of what you have said. And I, in my turn, will respond as I wish.

  11. Laura, you wrote: “Elective abortion has a far greater mortality and morbidity rate than normal pregnancy [and] childbirth,…”
    WRONG! Mortality and morbidity of elective abortion is less than ONE TENTH that of childbirth. Don’t take my word for it–read the source the doctors read: the Annals of Internal Medicine! http://www.annals.org/content/140/8/620.full

    [OC, Laura made an error. Or perhaps she didn’t. To avoid childbirth is 100% fatal & is a death sentence; for your progeny.

    Which brings me to a significant point. YOU DON’T GET IT. You avoided answering any of the important viewpoint content of her comment to make a correction on this data point which isn’t completely relevant anyway. Please reply.]

  12. Matt says:

    OC,
    Let’s try something.

    Please read this question literally. Then I ask, would you please answer it? “Could you believe that the government doesn’t cause childbirth (let alone inflict it)?”

    Could you comment then on my statement, “Sex causes childbirth.”?

  13. Matt says:

    OC,
    This is another topic for us to discuss.

    Please give us supporting logic for,
    “I support abortion rights because forcing a woman to endure childbirth is an unconscionable violation.”

    It appears you’re mad at God for making us what we are rather than at any bad government that forces women to gestate.

  14. Matt says:

    Concerning a protective ring. Please read the linked essay we posted at:
    https://deliberateengagement.wordpress.com/2009/05/15/violence-is-pro-choice/
    for a starting point.

  15. OK, now for your two links about violence.
    The first one describes ONE event, a minor assault. That’s much less than the murders, attempted murders, bombings, arsons, and endless acts of minor terrorism which have been regularly perpetrated against abortion workers since the late 1980s.
    Your second link describes NO violence, just some stuff about exaggerating the danger of the anti-Obama protesters at Notre Dame, and, some stuff about the dangers of innumeracy. The latter is ironic indeed, coming from you!

    I’m aware of what they say. I wrote them. Can you comment on the CONTENT of what they say? With facts and statistics of your own? No? – DE

  16. Regarding the “protective ring” link, i don’t see anything in it beyond what we have already discussed. For right-to-life picketers to pretend they are preventing violence is just silly. In the current climate of terror, their presence signals a THREAT of violence.

    “Climate of Terror” is hyperbole and foolish.
    So you didn’t read the article. -DE

    RE: “Can’t we love them both?” Yes, we can love them both. We can love that fetus until we’re blue in the face, and feel sorry for it, and say it’s a shame its mother decided not to let it remain in her body. We can love it. What we CANNOT do, morally, is prevent the mother from aborting it. We are not entitled to do that, EVEN THOUGH we love it.

    Didn’t read this one either? -DE

  17. Laura says:

    Re: Stats

    There can be NO DENYING that abortion is nearly 100% fatal for the baby. There are those cases where the baby survives – Gianna Jessen being probably the most well-known – saline, occasionally, and induced labor and hysterotomy more frequently – which is why President Bush established the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act, another decent bit of legislation threatened by FOCA in its various manifestations.

    However, I also stand by my assertion that abortion is also a greater threat to maternal health and overall well-being than childbirth.

    First of all, the statistics on childbirth are skewed and leave a great deal unreported. How many incidents of morbidity in childbirth are iatrogenic (medically caused, doctor-induced?) When my older daughter was born, our local hospital had a C-section rate of too close to 50%. (I went elsewhere to have both my children.) There is something terribly wrong with that figure, and I can promise you that any statistics coming out of this hospital at that time were seriously flawed in their representation of the true state of their obstetric patients’ health and recovery.

    Secondly, statistics on abortion mortality and morbidity are even more seriously flawed for being UNDER-REPORTED. Since so many of the procedures occur in outpatient clinics, subsequent issues often are not properly documented or attributed to their actual cause. We frequently hear of clinics where complications are suppressed – patients transported inappropriately (by private transport rather than local EMS) to hospitals where their complications become not the clinic’s but that hospital’s. This has been a major complaint for a very long time – and one of the arguments against FOCA, for that legislation would have made the documentation and regulation issues even more flimsy.

  18. Laura says:

    CONTINUED –

    It must also be admitted that, because of the underreporting of issues, and the manipulations of research and data by abortion-rights groups, we may never know the truth about the actual morbidity associated with abortion. Subsequent sterility as consequence of the procedure is and will be debated. A recent post by Matt on China’s statistics revive the passionate debate here about the link to subsequent breast cancer incidents – hotly contested by pro-aborts.

    That doesn’t even BEGIN to address the mental health issues.

    No – abortion is an unnatural state, and it is not so safe and simple as its proponents and supporters would have us to believe.

  19. Shortypie says:

    Health risks of pregnancy:
    http://www.thelizlibrary.org/liz/004.htm
    Even the common ones range from unpleasant to debilitating, and the common long-term effects are close to terrifying.

    [Life is hard. So our mothers should have given up before they had us? – DE]

  20. Matt, RE: your request for “supporting logic” for my assertion “forcing a woman to endure childbirth is an unconscionable violation”.

    I will tell you how to generate the supporting logic you have requested. First, write down your own supporting logic for the proposition: “Preventing someone with a broken leg from going and getting his leg treated by doctors, is an unconscionable violation.” Then, take an eraser, erase the prase “Preventing someone with a broken leg from going and getting his leg treated”, and in its place write “Forcing a woman to endure childbirth”. Now you have the supporting logic you requested. QED, Quite Easily Done.

    OC, your logical premise is missing a key element. A broken leg is not a pregnancy. An injury is an unnatural state; a pregnancy is the most natural state there is. Its an elemental step in procreation. You cannot support your logic with that argument. Please try again.

  21. Matt says:

    OC,
    You object to my holding your long comments to reply to them as I approve them. Yet you ask me to be deliberate. Is there another way to be deliberate – another definition – that you have in mind?
    Your “merciless mocking and taunting” truly don’t affect me. Though they do make you look far from deliberate.
    -DE

  22. You say you’re not censoring, but holding until you can read the long comment? OK, I’ll check back and see…. this has not been your pattern in the past.

    If I have a ‘pattern’ my significant other, my friends and my therapist have not been able to discern it. I welcome your open minded willingness to be patient.

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