Recommended Pages

A friend from high school suggested that I like a page called, “North Carolina Values Coalition,” which just goes to show that the definition of “friend” on FB is nothing like the definition of a friend outside of social networking.

It has occurred to me that there’s nothing quite as “un-value-like” as an organization that claims to promote family values, which, of course, just means a group of conservative church-folks forming a coalition to push their own agenda. The religious right is good at that, at forming groups to criticize, condemn and complain about what other people are doing. If you need proof of who is running the show, take a look at their website. (Be sure to read their “values” and their “strategy.”)

The first thing I noticed when I viewed the North Carolina Values Coalition page was that it was mostly addressing one issue: abortion. The second thing I noticed, which I’m sure you guys already know, is that, for people who claim to love fetuses and all of God’s creatures, they are the most vulgar, hateful group I’ve ever seen. If you need proof of that, too, check out the stones these nice followers in Christ are throwing at Chelsea Clinton for expressing her views. In the absence of intellectual horsepower, name-calling seems to be their only option. Of course, no one on this FB page addressed the most important issue associated with limiting a woman’s choice: If the fetus is saved from the evils of abortion, whether he is healthy or disabled, who is stepping up to the plate to care for him until he is 18 or older?

(Silence.)

Which brings me to the next point, an article I read recently about a woman who had an abortion at 23 weeks, a woman who struggled mightily with her decision. Whether a woman is terminating a pregnancy because she cannot afford a baby or because her boyfriend is in jail or because the baby is not developing properly, who are we to judge? It is clearly a personal struggle for women, and it’s a burden on her body, even when conceived intentionally and out of joy.

Why would we let our personal feelings get in the way of someone else’s decision that does not even remotely affect us? An abortion seems like a horrible experience, an experience that, apparently, sticks to your conscience forever. I have no idea, if faced with an unwanted or difficult pregnancy, what I would do, but I sure as hell would not want some stranger making me feel even worse. I wonder what percentage of pro-lifers have actually had abortions themselves, and now, with a guilty conscience, feel that this is their cause.

This coalition–and others like them–claim to be pro-parental choice. But you can’t have it both ways. You can’t say we want government out of our lives, except when it comes to pregnant women. Unless you’re saying, “We want government out of our lives, but we (God’s crusaders) want to stay in your life.” You can’t say, “God tells me not to judge,” and then try to bully others into making choices that you would not necessarily make for yourself. Of course, either way–in judging others or in physically preventing a woman from entering a doctor’s office–you’ve just stepped into “God’s” shoes. And for those of you who live where I do, I’m sure you’ve seen the right-to-lifers (and their embarrassed children), standing on the corner of Eldorado and Highway 75, picketing Planned Parenthood. Pathetic.

What I don’t understand is the vehemence with which some of these folks fight to make choices for someone else’s fertilized eggs when there are children in need all over the world. Hungry children. Sick children. Abused children. Children caught in the crossfire of war. The Catholic Church is one of the loudest voices, and it makes sense that, once upon a time, they wanted to fill their churches with as many babies as possible–that was the church’s future source of revenue (or potential pool of priests and nuns).

But, why, when so many children born today will not grow up to be Catholic or Protestant, do the religious work themselves into a frenzy? There is no Biblical support to suggest that saving fetuses will buy you a ticket to heaven.

I guess that’s why we need groups like North Carolina Values to throw a bone for its followers to chase after. They make people feel useful, feel purposeful, without giving them real responsibility. Every organization needs something that unifies its members, even if it just means getting into everyone else’s business while ignoring your own flaws and limitations and hypocrisies.

Oh, and about FB. I suggested a page, too, for the first time ever. I sent my “friend” a recommendation for the Freedom From Religion page. I’m sure the devil made me do it.

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123 responses to “Recommended Pages

  1. Shocker… NCVC is also against same-sex marriage. They have a list of videos under “Resources” entitled “Harms of Same-Sex Marriage.” I forced myself to watch a few, and I can honestly say that I feel ill. Mr. Glenn Stanton seems to be shouting from his pulpit, “I am a bigot and that’s fantastic for America, but don’t worry, I’m not racist!” Hmmm….

  2. Oh, Deb. The thing that caught my eye when perusing the values of the NCVC was “Pro-Religious Liberty” :
    “we believe in freedom of religion and that people of faith should not have to check their faith at the door when they enter the public square. We also believe that private business owners have the right to refuse service to customers on the basis of their religious faith.”

    And I say Ha! You think if a muslim business owner denied service to “good” christians, the proverbial You wouldn’t get up in arms? Wouldn’t take to their biblical soapboxes? Or if a group of muslims wanted to pray in a public square? Underneath the good, old stars & stripes? And what about other religions? How long before they asked their public officials to intervene and get rid of those [hari krishnas? buddhist monks? pagans?] (Actually, how cool would a group of sufis be, doing their dervish whirling in an American public square??)

    But you are specifically addressing the abortion thing. There need not be so many people involved in what is essentially a personal issue between one woman and her health care provider. The hypocritical nature of these “pro-life” fanatics is what astounds. Grinds my gears, that’s what.

    • @MelissaM I saw that, too! I wasn’t just addressing the abortion topic, but also the whole idea of these coalitions and how they don’t want gov’t intervention, but they want to intervene in everyone else’s lives. Good point about other religions and having businesses and praying in public—we’d hear no end of it from mainstream religions….

  3. Not so sure, Adopting children from other countries is very in right now with the christian set. Especially if they don’t look anything like you. You get brownie points in your church for being so loving to open your home to another child. Don’t get me wrong, adoption is an extremely awesome thing to do but I have noticed lately many christian families growing the church in this way. I personally know of a family that has adopted 6 children, so far from China and Ethiopia. She spends most of her time with them instead of her other children and loves dressing them up identical like little dolls.

    • @ Amy B That’s a lot of children to adopt, especially if you already have some. Not sure you do them justice when you have so many….

    • Amy, I think I know them, and I’ve wondered how you can effectively parent that many children. Especially since they all have “issues.” Why are international adoptions so popular? Maybe it’s because no one can tell how good of a xtian you are for adopting if they actually blend and look like your family…?

  4. “I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a child fed, not a child educated, not a child housed. That’s not Pro-Life. That’s Pro-Birth.”
    Sister Joan Chittister

    • @MichaelB Good quote from Sister Chittister.

    • @MichaelB -

      x2

    • Beautifully said.

    • @MichaelB, that is a really good quote. Like Sister Joan, I’m Catholic, so this topic is a slippery slope for me. I really think abortion would just be sooooo traumatizing for a woman to go through, and I would hate for someone to have to make that choice and live with it the rest of their life. But on the other hand, we’ve all seen kids that are hungry, abused, starved to death, beaten to death, just HORRIBLY taken care of….. and you wonder if they are better off being born or not? But there again, who gets to make that choice? I wish there was a test everyone had to pass before getting pregnant – some sort of qualification you have to meet – but as is evident from shows like 16 & Pregnant, there is no discrimination with fertility. If you can have 30 seconds of fun you can potentially create a life, whether you can care for it or not. Sad. :-(

      • @Molly, it’s definitely not a black and white issue, which I think was partly Sister Joan’s point. I have two daughters, aged 16 and 10, and a son who’s 13, so this topic hits home with me. We try to educate each of them as best we can and maintain an open door policy about discussing sex, but I’m sure stuff goes on that I don’t or won’t ever know about (if *my* teenage years are any indication ;-) ). That’s when you have to trust that discussions you have had with them about consequences stuck enough for them to make the right decision *before* that “30 secondaries of fun”. I don’t pretend to have all the solutions, but I also don’t think that taking away the choice to have an abortion is an option because it may be the best (albeit, extremely difficult) choice for some.

        • @MichaelB, don’t depress me for my life with three teens in 14 years. I thought parenting was supposed to get easier. ;-)

          • @Molly, I thought so too. My next fantasy is that they turn 18, move out, and you don’t have to fret over them anymore…please, don’t anyone dash that for me just yet.

  5. Just went on the page. The usual lack of reasoning and common sense. A lot of “God’s word is the same today as 50 years ago!” These cretins probably mix fibers and shave!!! lol

  6. Quite often those railing the most about an issue are looking to provide cover themselves. Many gay bashers are guilty of that. As far as the abortion issue goes, US Rep Scott DesJarlais (R-TN) is at the forefront of hypocrites in this regard.

    see: http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2012/oct/11/transcript-rep-desjarlais-pressured-pregnant-to/

  7. Please add this to the discussion: Last night I read on ABC News that 23% of U.S. children live in poverty. Twenty-three percent. So that means that one out of every four to five kids is born into a family that cannot provide for its most basic human needs. At birth, the cards are stacked against almost a quarter of our nation’s children. And that’s just from an economic standpoint. Bringing a child into the world under those circumstances — is that not the ultimate in parental irresponsibility? In child cruelty?

    • @Amy Thanks for sharing that stat. For sure, that is cruel to bring a child into the world that you cannot even provide for….And the stress that those parents will be under…that will make it even more difficult for the kids.

  8. Great post. Glad you sent your FB “friend” the FFR page. I live in NC and I don’t think I am brave enough to do that.

  9. Amen. Er, I mean, exactly! I wrote a piece on my blog once about abortion and in it I pointed out that, if you go with the “free will” think that all Christians hang their hats on, then you have to admit that that makes God pro-choice. The Christians didn’t like my saying that too much. ::scratching head::

    Plus there’s the fact that the bible is full of anecdotes where God kills innocent babies and children. So, really, not sure where Christians get this idea that God values lives at all.

    • @Lisa Good point! ” I wrote a piece on my blog once about abortion and in it I pointed out that, if you go with the “free will” think that all Christians hang their hats on, then you have to admit that that makes God pro-choice”

      • Ahh but sticking with that line of thinking he may also be pro “suffer the consequences of your own actions” so thats not a real good justification.

        • What consequences? The consequences the government decides on? At this point in time, abortion is legal, so there are no legal consequences. Or are you referring to the consequences “God” has decided upon? What consequences, exactly, does the bible say God places on abortion? Seriously, with “God’s” fondness for offing people, you can’t possibly call him “pro-life” can you? So how exactly do Christians rationalize their rabid anti-abortion stance?

          In any case, consequences or no consequences, free will is free will. And that, my friend, is pro-choice.

  10. The first thing I noticed when opening this page is that the two couples in the pictures are man and woman. AND, both man and woman of each couple are of the same race.

    Is it just me, or shouldn’t the “Freedom of Religion” mean more than they make it out to be. Freedom of Religion should be that the religious can worship whatever they like in the privacy of their own home and I will not worship whatever I want in the privacy of my own home. How about Freedom of Religion should mean that we ALL have the freedom to believe what we believe.

    As far as abortion, I know in my bones I couldn’t do it. But, that’s for me. A choice for me. I make that choice for me. I certainly don’t presume to know how someone else feels, for crying out loud! I’m so tired of that pro-life nonsense. How about, if we save the child from death, the state will have to pay for the child when the mom is on welfare OR when the child is abandoned to the system. What happens when the state pays for the child? Oh, right! Your taxes go up! GOOD THINKING.

    Something else for them to bitch about.

  11. And, I just got to their 10 ways same-sex marriage harms. And now … I’m pissed off.

  12. What bothers me about the right-to-lifers is that they don’t react to what happens in many in vitro fertilization procedures. Typically a woman is given something to make them produce as many as 12 eggs which are then fertilized with sperm. (That makes them zygotes and they don’t become embryos until they implant in a woman’s uterus.) Those zygotes are fed and watched over and then, usually, 4 of the 12 are implanted and the OTHER 8 are thrown away. And nobody says a word. Apparently it’s OK to discard 8 fertilized eggs as long as a woman gets pregnant. And when the right-to-lifers call a fertilized egg a human being they must recognize that every time they eat a fertilized chicken egg they are eating
    a whole chicken, guts, feathers, feet and all.

    • @pir faqir, just so that you have accurate information… this is not what the Catholic church teaches (I can’t speak on behalf of other pro-life religions). The Catholic church teaches that in-vitro or any sort of artificial fertilization is wrong where a zygote is destroyed. In fact even the “casual disposal” of semen, without giving it the opportunity to fertilize an egg, is considered wrong. (Yeah this eliminates a lot of sexual activity…. masturbation, use of birth control, etc…) So, the Catholic church, at least, is very black-and-white in its pro-life stance. I’m not telling you I vehemently agree with all aspects of this strict stance (I think if I were desperate for a child, I would try ANYTHING to get pregnant), but this is the stance of the Catholic church.

  13. “Freedom of religion is an oxymoron.”…pir faqir

  14. I think your profile image is going to grow horns now :-)

    It’s been my experience as well that the conservative Republican view is “pro-fetus”: life begins at sex and ends at birth. In my opinion, it’s not an issue of compassion, mercy, or “family values” (whatever that supposedly means to them), but about punishing female sexuality. Just look at the biblical treatment of female victims of sexual assault.

    It irritates me to no end to see them trying to appropriate the “pro-choice” terminology when talking about having the freedom to choose where to school their child. In most cases, it’s because either science classrooms having the audacity to teach modern evolutionary theory or the prospect of our children being “taught how to have sex” when they’re still in grade school … or, as the rest of the country calls it, “receiving comprehensive, age appropriate sex education”. They would rather keep their children and others in the dark about the principles, the mechanics, and the very real risks of sexual activity because they think this will somehow protect them … only to discover that they will just find out on their own … with each other … and end up potentially pregnant, sick, or dying from something for which we have no cure.

    And then there’s abortion. With apologies to Derek Bok: if you think sex education is harmful to your child, try ignorance. People like these wonder why the teen pregnancy and abortion rates are so high … all the while yanking thier kids out of sex-ed, promoting the dangerous misinformation given abstinence only “education” programs and de-funding Planned Parenthood. Real classy. They refuse to believe that they themselves are making the problem worse. Such blind adherence to their ideology is forcing them to keep their children ignorant and dangerously unequipped to handle what’s waiting for them in early adulthood.

    Again, though … it’s not about life. It’s about sending a message. (Yeah, shameless plug, but it’s actually on topic.)

    • @Senator Jason Good points and good post, BTW. I always find it ironic that the adults who don’t want to teach sex ed don’t hold themselves to the same standards they expect from their kids. I guess if they don’t teach them about sex, they think the kids won’t ever do it….

  15. And this is why I don’t miss Facebook. I still have an account. Still pop in now and again. But when I see the tripe that my believing “friends” post, I just shake my head. Who are they *really* trying to convince? (Rhetorical question.)

    • I have evangelical family. I silence them so they don’t show up in my feed, and it has made my FB usage far more enjoyable.

    • @MichaelB I’m rarely on FB, but this recommended link came directly to my email box, so of course, I saw it. I actually don’t mind too much all the religious stuff because it gives me a true sense of what people are really thinking, and I know not to make any smart-a** remarks around my religious friends!

      • @Deb Yeah, I’d probably feel the same if it was an email notification. Since I haven’t been active on fb for over three years, my “friends” are almost entirely former church friends and high school or college friends, most of whom seem to be way more religious than they ever were when I knew them. The ones who aren’t religious about God are just as religious about something else (running, health food products, politics, etc.).

  16. Cheryl McDonald

    I have friends from high school who are religious, too and I’ve been sent recommendations for pages that are the polar opposite of my beliefs (which anyone who has ever visited my wall know immediately!) I guess I just reject the recommendations out of hand or ignore them because the friends I’ve kept know the person I am, and while I am tolerant and open minded, anyone who truly knows me knows I don’t suffer fools gladly, so they don’t tend to send that rubbish to me (unless they want my honest opinion)… and those who don’t know me very well quickly find out that I can be devastatingly, wickedly honest with comments.

  17. First, as a male, I really have no place in the abortion discussion. If I decided to have a vasectomy, I am not sure I would want that debated on the floor of congress. Women should be allowed to decide their own health needs without interference from anyone. End of debate as far as I am concerned.

    To paraphrase something I stated recently, belief is fine until it gets together in groups and forms religion. Religious organizations tend to be an echo chamber where all they hear are their ideas. They support one another in forming a parochial view (in the most real sense), and often to the exclusion of the tenets of their religion. Because no one challenges the virulence of their ideas, the notions tend to gather strength. Also, because people are social animals, we tend not to want to upset the boat, so I am sure there are many who may find the idea presented in their religions repugnant, but don’t have the courage to stand up to it.

    My sister recently left a church because she thought they were too extreme in wanting to rule other people’s lives. She loves the idea of community, but isn’t real keen on collective hatred. She also didn’t like the hatred they were trying to pump into her kids heads. Kudos to her for seeing the light!

    I am reminded of a couple of biblical phrase:

    “Judge not lest ye be judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” (Mathew 7:1-3)

    “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.” (John, 8:7)

    Some folk need to pay better attention to their supposed holy books.

    • I totally agree with Derrick.

      For what I´ve understood, terminating pregnancy is a decision not taken lightly and anyone claiming that it is used as an alternative to contraception is just evil. The closest to those feelings I´ve come to is that we encountered two miscarriages before our daughter – yet I felt a bit like an outsider then. That is all the more reason why we meen should have NO SAY in anything that directly only affects women.

      Objecting HPV because it might increase teenage girls´promiscuity is one of those…GRRR!!! Altogether I am more and more convinced that fundie religiosas are the most intolerant, most immoral and most evil people on this planet.

    • @Derrick I like your vasectomy analogy. I also agree with this, “…belief is fine until it gets together in groups and forms religion.” There is the pack mentality, and also the problem that, religions seem to have problems with boundaries. When they start gaining strength, they want political power, too.

  18. In debates with christians I constantly get evidence that bullying and harassment are “good christian virtues”. I assume it is the command to spread the gospel that causes them to act as they do. If you don’t want their “good news”, they will try to force it down on you in any way. They want abortion to be illegal, homosexuality to be illegal…

    I could have had an understanding of their arguments to ban abortion if the number of children being born was too low. But not as long as the world is overpopulated and thousands of children born each day never gets a good life. The day they make sure that every child born is ensured a good life with all the care and nurturing they need, that day I’ll consider if the christians standpoint could mean something positive for humanity.

  19. Deborah,

    A few comments or corrections.

    1. You stated, “The second thing I noticed, which I’m sure you guys already know, is that, for people who claim to love fetuses and all of God’s creatures, they are the most vulgar, hateful group I’ve ever seen.”
    - While this may be the personalities in the North Carolina Values Coalition, it is hardly what I have encountered amongst the majority of pro-life advocates I’ve encountered. There are, as in any group, fringe aspects but I provide the following as an example of non-violent stone throwers… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1OJaCB9gW8

    2. You asked, “…the fetus is saved from the evils of abortion, whether he is healthy or disabled, who is stepping up to the plate to care for him until he is 18 or older?”
    - It seems you are insinuating it is ok to kill a human being because their life might suck? We should not terminate the life of a little baby when their parents lose their job and their family ends up homeless because someone thinks the child’s life is going to suck. Can you explain to me why we should we do it to unborn human beings?

    3. You stated, “Whether a woman is terminating a pregnancy because she cannot afford a baby or because her boyfriend is in jail or because the baby is not developing properly, who are we to judge?”
    - Why do you state this is judging the woman? Could it not just be people protecting the innocent human being? There is a very big difference between the two.

    4. You stated, “Why would we let our personal feelings get in the way of someone else’s decision that does not even remotely affect us?”
    - This is the crux of the argument. The science of embryology tells us that a new human being is formed at conception. I have cited it in multiple sources previously on this blog and I can do it again if you like. But the bottom line is not a matter of emotion or personal feelings. It is a matter of whether or not we think it is beneficial to society to allow the killing of some human beings, specifically those human beings that are the most vulnerable and innocent among us. Is it not the role of government to protect the weakest among us from the strongest?

    5. You state, “What I don’t understand is the vehemence with which some of these folks fight to make choices for someone else’s fertilized eggs when there are children in need all over the world.”
    - Interesting you state they are someone else’s fertilized children as if human beings are a commodity to be discarded and used at will. Maybe that’s the problem?

    6. “There is no Biblical support to suggest that saving fetuses will buy you a ticket to heaven.” It has nothing to do with a ticket to heaven. It has to do with preventing the killing of vulnerable and innocent human beings.

    • Joe, you skirted the issues. First of all, embryology DOES NOT state that life begins at conception. There are most likely days after the ejaculation before that and yet another hurdle to climb is for the zygote to attach the wall of the uterus. Prior to that there are no reasons to claim that life had started.

      I am an outsider to your debates but I have yet to see an article or hear news in which these Pro- Lifers had anything but themselves and their salvation as a motive. You call these wackos fringe when in fact they and their ilk form the majority. It is quite unfortunate that they bully desperate women at the clinics or shoot doctors but it is still somewhat benevolent, right.
      I cannot contain my disdain towards these hypocritical, evil self-righteous and self-centered “people of the good book”.

      • saab93f…I think you might be confusing with the medical definition of when pregnancy starts. I would agree that pregnancy does not start at conception from a medical perspective. But human life very much begins at conception.
        From Princton’s (a fairly reputable university in America) website…
        http://www.princeton.edu/~prolife/articles/embryoquotes2.html

        • LanceThruster

          @Joe K –

          Is this calculus, or addition and subtraction? I get confused.

        • Those were not the “official” stance of the Princeton Uni but quotes that support pro-life agenda (as the url nicely showed).

          When about 1 in 6 pregnancies end up in miscarriage, why is xian God never put on trial for being the biggest abortionist of all? Why the double standards?

          • @saab… Could you elaborate on what your trying to get across here. I think I’m missing it. Specifically, just because an individual with a pro-life agenda has colated information from Scientific texts does not change the validity of the science. Second, what does miscarriage have to do with this. I have not brought God into this equation at all. It am merely asserting based on science that human life begins at conception and that therefore a medically induced abortion is directly killing a human being. That is all. Where I would apply a religious belief to this matter is the belief that killing innocent and vulnerable (the most vulerable by the way) human beings is inherently wrong. That is where the discussion should lie in this exchange. Specifically…”Is is right or wrong to kill a perfectly innocent and exceptionally vulnerable human being?” Thats the honest discussion.

            • Well, you let believe that Princeton has somehow taken a stand on the issue. I brought miscarriages because they terminate pregnancies like no other and 99 percent of so called Pro-Lifers (a guess) are that because of their faith. They do not care whether unwanted pregnancies could be avoided, whether the child has supportive parents, whether the society takes care of those who cannot take care of themselves. All they want is to have a say in an issue that is the woman´s and her alone.

              • @saab93f “They do not care whether unwanted pregnancies could be avoided, whether the child has supportive parents, whether the society takes care of those who cannot take care of themselves. ”

                I agree with you–they want to make choices for others without the responsibility.

        • @Joe K That statement doesn’t make sense. If pregnancy does not start at conception, than how can life?

          • Pregnancy is a specific medical term which corresponds with implantation. So while human life exists at conception as discussed somewhere else here, if there is no implantation then there is no pregnancy from the medical perspective. That being said, it is relevant to be aware that implantation doesn’t necessarily have to be in the correct position as occurs in an ectopic pregnancy when a zygote or embryo and then fetus implants in the fallopian tube.

            • @Joe K “…and then fetus implants in the fallopian tube.” In which case, the pregnancy and the fetus is not sustainable.

              I’m going to end my discussion with you here, having already been through this with you before.

              You are free to believe that it’s your right to make decisions for a woman, and I am free to believe that it is not my decision to make. Fortunately, our laws support a woman’s right to choose to remove a fertilized egg from her body.

    • @JoeK “Is it not the role of government to protect the weakest among us from the strongest?” I really like that. That’s a good comment. The abortion discussion is just a difficult one with two very opposing (and passionate) views. Clearly I think abortion is a horrible thing, both for the baby AND the mother. But to @Deb ‘s point, I would hate to make a woman feel even worse about that decision. I just don’t think its fair for @saab93f to say that all pro-lifers are selfishly-motivated. I think a lot of them are previous abortion victims, like @Deb mentioned, and they want to save other women from suffering the pain that they themselves suffered. The motives of at least SOME pro-lifers is love. Love for the women considering abortion and love for the unborn child. Maybe some are hateful, but all are not. Generalizing an entire group is just ignorant.

      • I would like to re-quote Michael B in my defence:

        “I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a child fed, not a child educated, not a child housed. That’s not Pro-Life. That’s Pro-Birth.”

        Sister Joan Chittister

        That is the way Pro-Life groups show to an outsider. All they care about is that the pregnancy is not terminated. More often than not the same people are the staunchest conservatives who are more than willing to attack “socialized medicine” or spreading welfare. They are hypocrites.

        • @saab93f This is absolutely the case in TX, where we have reduced services like healthcare for indigent children: “More often than not the same people are the staunchest conservatives who are more than willing to attack “socialized medicine” or spreading welfare. They are hypocrites.”

    • - Interesting you state they are someone else’s fertilized children as if human beings are a commodity to be discarded and used at will. Maybe that’s the problem?

      As a supporter of legal abortion rights, I think the problem is that some people believe that a zygote – a single-celled fertilized egg with only a 50% chance of eventually implanting – should have rights that supercede those of the woman carrying it. When this happens – especially with people in power who show little regard for these same lives once they pop out of the womb – you easily end up with situations like the death that occured in Ireland last November.

      It’s true that genetically, a zygote is human, and that it’s made of living biological material, but there is a vast developmental gulf that exists between it and a fully developed, born person that is not dependent upon anyone else for its biological resources. These factors inevitably make a woman’s pregnancy both her right and her responsibility to carry to term or terminate as she sees fit.

      • I totally agree with you!

        • @Senator, It seems wrong to me to place more value on a human being that is “not dependent upon anyone else for its biological resources” than a human being who IS dependent. Now you’ve not only de-valued the life of a zygote, but also have de-valued the lives of infants, toddlers, and adults who are handicapped, mentally disabled, on respirators, have debilitating diseases, etc… My 1 year olds are in many ways just as dependent on me NOW for their biological resources than they were in-utero. Yes, they are not literally feeding off of my body, but if I just left them to fend for themselves for a couple of weeks, they would die. They can’t feed themselves, they can’t get themselves water, they can’t change their diapers. Is their life less valuable than mine? Or other living humans? On contrast I’d sacrifice my life in an INSTANT if it meant saving my kids (and I think that is true of most parents – believer or non-believer). There is just SO MUCH gray area in this discussion which is why it is such a difficult topic. I think anytime we try to de-value a life, or place a hierarchy on whose life is more important, or who should be saved at the expense of another, its just a bad ethical place to be.

          • Molly, I covered two aspects: the issue of biological dependency, and the developmental difference between a zygote and a fully formed born human.

            There is, in pregnancy, a situation of exclusive and unidirectional biological dependence that is not present in the other examples you provided. This bestows upon the host a right to determine whether and how their biological resources are being used. For example, there is no law (as far as I know) that compels parents to donate blood / tissue / organs to their children if they are in need of them … even if their survival is at stake and there is no other potential donor. Compare this with the ramifications for not providing generally accessible resources like food, water, clothing, etc. This is why I will maintain that it is a woman’s exclusive right and responsibility to do what she deems to be most appropriate regarding her own pregnancy.

            However, it’s not that characteristic that leads me to “de-value” unborn life, rather – as I said earlier – the clear difference in virtually every measurable way between a fertilized egg and a born person. All of life is a continuum. Even the cells that combined to form a zygote are alive, at least functionally speaking. As such, it’s true that they have some inherent value … but there comes a point when the rights inherent to living, breathing people will come into direct conflict with those that we apply to zygotes and blastocysts and a decision will need to be made.

            To make such a decision thinking that the two are equal says, to me, that we are instead de-valuing the lives and the personal autonomy rights of every woman who has the capacity to bear children, treating them as nothing more than expendable vessels for the next generation of humans.

            • @Senator Jason Excellent points, as always. I agree that it’s “…a woman’s exclusive right and responsibility to do what she deems to be most appropriate regarding her own pregnancy.”

              Let me share something:

              My mother had a difficult pregnancy with me. And my father told the doctor, if it comes down to choosing the life of the child or the life of the mother (his wife), choose the mother. You can always replace a child–a mother can have another child, but you cannot replace a child’s mother. This makes sense. The mother is already in existence; she is using her own resources, risking her life. (Ironically, I saw a news clip last night that said child birth is more dangerous than abortion.) Regardless, the mother takes 100% of the risk when having a child, and it should be her right to decide if she wants to carry a fetus to term or not. No one else’s.

              • It is most definitely more dangerous to carry a pregnancy to term than it is to have a legal abortion in a facility equipped to handle the procedure. As you know, though, the risk of complication increases significantly with every week that goes by, making it all the more imperative that abortion – if chosen – is done as quickly as possible. It’s this and other things that make me scratch my head when I hear of another hurdle or roadblock put up by members of the GOP to make abortions more time consuming and expensive. As with so many other aspects of their overall strategy, it’s not pro-life.

                A family member of mine faced a similar situation to your mother’s a while back. It was recommended she have an abortion because of what later ended up being identified as a relatively low-probability event (I can’t remember what it was in particular). She decided against it but knew from the beginning, like your mother, that her own life took priority. Especially in situations where there are already children in the family, what possible practical, moral, or ethical justification is there to sacrifice your life for your unborn child, if it means abandoning all of your children through your death?

              • @Deb, just curious…. what did your MOM say? Did she argue with your dad and say “no, save the baby?” Or was she not conscious or coherent when this conversation between your dad and her doctor took place? It should’ve been her decision, right? Haha… just kidding. But seriously I remember going into labor with the twins and telling my husband “no matter what happens, if something goes wrong make sure to save the babies over me.” And I think he agreed with that decision. There was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to die if it came down to a choice between me and the babies. And I don’t consider myself THAT good of a person; I’m inherently flawed and selfish. I just think most women have that inherent desire to save their off-spring at any cost… and at any stage of life. And yes, you can “replace a child” numerically, but in all honesty what parent could really think a child could be replaced. I know you don’t think one of your sons could be replaced.

                @Senator, @Deb – But this digresses from the argument at hand… is that decision up to the MOTHER or up to the GOVERNMENT? That is really where the debate lies, not on whether abortion is “wrong” or “right”, on whether its “murder of a child” or just “termination of a pregnancy”. There is “scientific evidence” to support both stances and ultimately it comes down to an individual’s opinion. The debate really is, “who gets to decide?”. If the answer is the mother gets to decide, then do parents also get to decide on treatment of their children after birth? We’ve all read about those wacky religious/granola parents who don’t believe in medical intervention and whose children die because they aren’t given treatment for simple things like flu, or even more complex things like cancer. So is this those parents right to make that decision for their children? I’m not ENTIRELY sure on the laws but I believe its illegal for a parent to refuse medical treatment for their child in life-or-death situations. If we decide abortion is the mother’s choice, then we enter into a gray area on what other stages of life we can “play god” and make decisions about treatment for people who are sick/ old / terminally ill / handicapped.

                I think that’s the “fear” of most pro-life groups. They fear that if abortion is okay, then euthanasia will be okay, then assisted-suicide will be okay, and we will just develop into a culture of death, a culture of “playing god’. I hope that is a somewhat exaggerated fear, and that in reality we would be able to draw the line at some point, but I think that is the fear. Where do we stop?

                • @Molly I support your belief that your children’s lives are more important than yours, and I support my parent’s belief that the person already in existence, the mother, trumps the fetus (or, closer to full term, the child’s). I see the logic that a mother can have more biological children, but a child can not have another biological mother. In addition, the mother already has others who might need her, whether it is a husband, an elderly parent, other children or coworkers. I’m not going to judge either position.

                  Your second paragraph throws together a lot of different issues. There is no scientific evidence to support that abortion is “murder of a child,” no matter what the right-to-lifers say. If this were true, our democratic society would have collectively found abortion to be illegal. It is no coincidence that the majority of those who believe it is murder also happen to be religious.

                  Wacky religious parents are not the same as granola parents, but that’s not what we’re talking about. Again, the religious parents who withhold treatment believe that god can help their children instead. These are very rare cases, and we usually hear about them because, the parents have been able to exercise their judgments and their rights, and so the kids die.

                  These are all different arguments here. As for the elderly and the terminally ill….decisions are made ALL the time to let them live or die. Yes, even the terminally ill are put down to save on suffering and resources. And I agree–why spend limited resources on someone to maintain pain and suffering? The healthcare community is constantly deciding who gets to live and who gets to die. You only hope that they do so humanely and with the best interests of the patient and society. When a nurse doubles and triples morphine for a terminal patient, she is engaging in euthanasia. And what is wrong with that? What is wrong with assisted-suicide if that’s a person’s will? These things do not make us an inhumane or immoral society.

                  People play god all the time. When doctors treat for cancer, they are playing god. They are intervening in what an all-knowing and all-powerful god has chosen/allowed for a patient, and they are artificially prolonging the life that god has given. Isn’t it for god to decide when to terminate life?

                  • @Deb, yes good points. I think all of those decisions – abortion, “putting down” old people, stopping medical treatment, prolonging life, etc… those are difficult, heart-wrenching, guilt-inducing, and ethically-unclear decisions…. regardless of what your beliefs are. I don’t have all the answers, although I wish I did. And I hope I don’t have to make many of these decisions in my lifetime either.

                • First, there is scientific evidence to show when *pregnancy* begins. As for life, I believe there is a fair consensus on the idea that life itself is a continuum, making it correspondingly difficult to pin down any sort of starting point. This is why markers like implantation and viability are so important because they’re some of the only objective standards we have.

                  I think we’ve seen, through the precedent of law, that those parents who don’t give their children the care they need by way of medical attention, food, shelter, etc., are held criminally responsible for whatever happens to them. As I stated earlier, these situations are different from what is seen in pregnancy, in which there is an undeveloped / developing human embryo that is wholly and exclusively biologically dependent on one specific person.

                  Those conditions are what makes the difference, and that is why there’s little worry that legal abortion access will lead to sending other people out to pasture because we don’t feel like caring for them.

                  (I also don’t see a problem with assisted suicide, but again, that’s an issue of personal autonomy that is encountered primarily during grave terminal illness or some other situation in which there is either present or inevitable suffering of a profound nature. That said, I’m not sure this particular issue is relevant to the topic at hand.)

            • Senator Jason…First and foremost I want to commend you from the top of all the mountains of the world for being honest. You are one of the few Pro-Abortion advocates I have come across that acknowledges that a fertilized egg is, in all scientific reality a human being. I acknowledge you view it as one with less right than another human being. For that I commend you. That is the discussion we as a nation desperately need. One you are clearly willing to have. Honoring your beliefs I’d like to proceed down that rabbit hole if you don’t mind. Or if you’d like to take this offline Deborah can send you my email since I include it when posting.

              Specifically….

              1. You stated, “This bestows upon the host a right to determine whether and how their biological resources are being used.”
              - How does the fact that the situation is exclusive and unidirections bestow the right “…to do what she deems to be most appropriate regarding her own pregnancy…” in all cases. More bluntly stated, if the life of a mother is NOT at risk, why do you think one human being has a right to happiness over another human beings right to life.

              2. Do you see a difference between taking the life of a human being and not providing a human being the medical treatment needed to help fix a medical condition? I ask this in a effort to clarify how you equate providing blood donation to another human being in an effort to correct a medical deficiency with removing a human being from an environment required to live or directly terminating its life.

              3. You state, “…there comes a point when the rights inherent to living, breathing people will come into direct conflict with those that we apply to zygotes and blastocysts and a decision will need to be made.”
              - What is that point?

              4. You state, “To make such a decision thinking that the two are equal says, to me, that we are instead de-valuing the lives and the personal autonomy rights of every woman who has the capacity to bear children, treating them as nothing more than expendable vessels for the next generation of humans.”
              - I don’t see how you come to this conclusion.

              • @Joe K I’m not trying to put words in Senator Jason’s mouth, but it seemed to me that he was only acknowledging that a fertilized egg is indeed genetically a human being. I don’t think you’ll find argument there from anyone. (Just as a chicken egg is genetically and potentially a chicken.)

                And I’d also like to comment on your point #1. As Derrick mentioned earlier in this thread, the choice to carry a fertilized egg to term should be, ultimately, a woman’s choice. You (and those who think as you do) are assigning rights to something that cannot live, breathe, talk or make decisions on it’s own. You are giving the same rights to a clump of cells as you are to a living, breathing, thinking woman. That is offensive, and it is not legally or morally sound.

                • Not sure I see the logic behind your conclusion. We are all a clump of cells that make up a human being. What makes one clump of cells more deserving of a right to life than another?

              • 1 – More bluntly stated, if the life of a mother is NOT at risk, why do you think one human being has a right to happiness over another human beings right to life.

                First of all, while a fertilized egg is human from a genetic standpoint, it’s still a potential life whose existence is, as I said, wholly dependent upon another. These two factors (gone into detail in other comments to Molly, for example) combined with my belief in the maintenance of personal bodily autonomy lead me to conclude that a pregnant woman should retain the rights to do what she sees fit with regard to that potential life inside of her.

                2 - … how you equate providing blood donation to another human being in an effort to correct a medical deficiency with removing a human being from an environment required to live or directly terminating its life.

                In both cases as I described, they involve the potentially compulsory use of biological resources to provide sustenance to another, as I mentioned earlier.

                I don’t think we’re going to see eye to eye on this because the way you’ve worded some of your questions (like this one) and statements says you see no difference between a fertilized egg and a fully developed, born person. True, I can’t necessarily justify removing a human being from life support, but it depends on the circumstances. If, for example, this person were wholly dependent upon my life to survive, then I would want the right to do what’s best for me. If we then move from a born person to a recently-implanted blastocyst … there’s really no debate, in my opinion.

                3 & 4 – If we give full personhood rights to zygotes, and say that their right to life supersedes the rights of the mother, we still have to define their relative limits. In the clinch, who wins out? Inevitably, we will encounter a medical situation where both mother and fetus are dying, and something can be done to allow one to survive. Then what? Do we protect the unborn because they have no advocate? What if she’s a single mother who has other children? Is this unborn child’s life worth more than two or three other children, including this one, becoming orphans?

                See, if experience is any indicator, those who wish to protect the sanctity of unborn life will do so at the expense of the health, safety, and even the life of the woman carrying it. I bring up the situation in Ireland again, where medical staff refused to remove Savita Halappanavar’s dying fetus because they still detected a heartbeat … unmoved by the fact that if they didn’t, both of them were going to be dead. Well, both of them did die, because they were afraid of running afoul of the law. Then there’s Danielle Deaver, whose water broke at 22 weeks and began crushing her unborn child to death. Doctors were legally forbidden from helping her because Nebraska state law decided that fetuses can feel pain at 20 weeks. Instead of inducing labor to end her pregnancy, she had to wait … with the full knowledge that until premature labor occurred on its own, she would be crushing a child that she very much wanted with her own body.

                So yes, there’s going to be a point where a choice needs to be made. And, if we treat the unborn as somehow equal to fully developed, born, living people, then we’re going to see an overall shift in the way women are treated as a result.

          • @Molly Your twins are still capable of surviving on their own without you, however. Your husband can care for them. While they were in their early stages of development in the uterus, no one could step into your proverbial shoes. If you and your husband were to die, I’m not so sure any other parent would give their life for another’s child, especially if they had their own children to raise. So there are definite benefits to a child who is raised by the biological parents.

            I agree with you: “I think anytime we try to de-value a life, or place a hierarchy on whose life is more important, or who should be saved at the expense of another, its just a bad ethical place to be.”

            That’s why we should make decisions or judgments on other women who decide to terminate their pregnancies. This is a “gray area,” and if it were universally accepted that a zygote should have the same rights as the mother, our laws would reflect that.

      • As a point of fact the Irish Health Service Executive published a report recently documenting the causes of Savita Halappanavar’s death. Not much news about it, maybe it has something to do with not complying with an agenda. You can find it here: http://www.hse.ie/eng/services/news/nimtreport50278.pdf

        • I promise this is the last time I´ll address this but skimming through the report just made me angry. 100 pages of processual enhancement suggestions when all that would´ve been needed was to say that when a mother´s life is at grave risk, quit being stubbornly pro-fetus. If she had died in a litigation-prone society such as the US, her husband could have sued everyone for gazillion and for once, rightly so. Yes, there are good Christians just like there are good muslims, Hindus and just possibly Mormons but THIS IS WHAT RELIGION CAN DO in extreme cases!! This is little better than those horrible creeps who let their kids die and just use magic….prayers.

          What I cannot comprehend is why evry believer left right and centre will not condemd both these medical “professionals” who allowed a young woman die anymore than the faith-healing parents. They are unfortunate or extreme or not Real Christians ™. No they are not, they are what even as binign religion as xianity allows for.

  20. @Deb K – Two interesting links, thanks for sharing.

    Re the story about the woman pregnant with twins who aborted one… what a horrible ordeal. Having endured a twin pregnancy myself (that, thankfully, ended with two healthy babies), I just can’t even imagine the suffering her and her husband endured. They faced a really, really difficult decision. And I don’t want to make that mom feel worse for the decision than she already does (I imagine the experience will haunt her forever). But, I feel like in some ways what she did was fearful. What she did was faithless. I realize, what she did was “rational” – she weighed her options and followed what science and medicine told her to do. But why didn’t she have more faith? I’m not even saying she needed to have faith in God. Why didn’t she have faith in her son? If there was a 1% chance he could pull through and recover, isn’t that risk worth taking? And I hope I never have to face this decision. And I realize opinions like mine just deepen this mother’s turmoil, and for that I am truly sorry. But… how many stories have you heard about doctors saying “this baby won’t make it”, and 20 years later that baby is a healthy, happy adult? In fact I have two personal experiences with friends who had twin pregnancies, both of which were told one of the babies wouldn’t make it and were advised to terminate one. In both cases, the women refused and today they have healthy twins. Yes, they had some premie stages and some rough surgeries and some challenges along the way, but now they are healthy.

    I just think in our human pursuit of knowledge and science, in our pursuit of “answers”, somewhere along the way this taught us to give up. We lost that element of hope. That element of faith. That element of miracles. And again, if you don’t believe in God, I’m not even saying these things have to be God-related. Just that universal way of nature surprising you by its resilience.

    There are no clear answers. This is a hard situation. I hope this woman finds healing and peace.

    • Hi Molly…No worries on the Deb K. Maybe you meant Deb, OK? :) I don’t know too much about the specifics of the diagnosis, but I do have faith in science. Sure, there are mistakes, and those are usually the things you hear about. I understand what you’re saying about having hope that the doctors are wrong, but it would be a burden on the family to have a child so severely disabled. And it’s not much of a life for him, if he would even have awareness. I don’t know. I just think it should be up to the mother (and father, secondarily) to decide….

      • LanceThruster

        @Deb, OK?

        “For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.”
        ― Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

        – AND –

        “One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

        ― Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

        from: http://www.goodreads.com/work/quotes/252618-the-demon-haunted-world-science-as-a-candle-in-the-dark

        Lot’s of good ones there, but what I was looking for and couldn’t find was Sagan saying that science makes more accurate predictions than any astrologer or mystic.

        • @LT Love those Sagan quotes, especially “If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle….Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

          • LanceThruster

            @Deb – Yeah, but I should have read your comment more closely as your “I have faith in science” statement had a little more context than I allowed for when I quote-blasted you.

      • @Deb, I get what you’re saying. Its a tough situation and they had to choose between two potentially horrible outcomes. And it doesn’t sound like it was a decision they took lightly or made easily.

  21. @Deb I don’t know why I’m calling you Deb K today? Sorry! Haha.

  22. Excellent article Deb! Whole heartedly agree with all of it.

  23. LanceThruster

    So when do the supposed “pro-life” advocates address the value of contraception in preventing these unwanted pregnancies (or are they still in “slut-shaming” mode)?

    • Pfft! Are they still in slut-shaming mode?? Come on! As long as the bible has Eve foisting the apple on Adam, they will be in slut-shaming mode. She was strutting around nekkid, you know. The original Jezebel!

      • LanceThruster

        ‘You’re pretty uptight for a naked chick. You know what would loosen you up? A little fruit.’ – Homer. (as Adam in “Simpson’s Bible Stories”)

        xD

  24. I can never be thankful enough that I live in Canada. We seem to have a more limited and manageable number of religious nutters up here. Maybe the cold keeps them away….

  25. Deb…
    I acknowledge that I love a good argument and often make snarky comments, admittedly not up the standards of LT, with the goal of ruffling feathers while trying to make a point but in this case I am not doing that. I’m passing this on with the utmost intention of charity, I am not saying this to demonize anyone, merely point out how our world view subtly changes over time. Please please please take it as such…

    “You can always replace a child” …. Each and every human being is uniquely individual. None of us can be replaced. The thing that can be replaced to some extent, but not all, is the happiness one gets out of a child. I think that is what you mean when you say a child can be replaced. And that, albeit very subtle in nature, is appalling. Not that YOU are appalling, we are all very much a product of the world around us. I’m not denying that there is a challenging moral dilemma when a mother or child life is in the balance but, this “replacement” statement and the philosophy behind it, more so than anything else associated with abortion is why I have ALWAYS (even before identifying as a Catholic three years ago) been opposed to abortion. No human should ever be treated or viewed as the object of another’s happiness. Abortion requires this world view for it’s justification. If abortion has a danger to society it lies there. We can argue all we want about the logical technicalities, but what it really comes down to is that abortion results in the development of a world view that makes human beings a material quantity to be traded, discarded, disposed of, used and/or abused to support the happiness of the other in a position of power. Please Please Please don’t take this as a personal attack on you. That is not my intent in any way what so ever.

    • @Joe K No offense taken at all. It is interesting to read your perspective. I understand that you are saying a human life should not be seen as expendable, but as something sacred. I do think that we are all expendable, all replaceable in a way. We may not be replaceable to a handful of people, but in the grand scheme of things, the universe and its history are indifferent to whether you or I lived or not. It doesn’t mean that I won’t reach out and help others in any way I can. But that is because those folks are already here, and I think it’s all of our responsibility to make the world a better place for those in it.

      I’m not saying that everyone who is a believer or a right-to-lifer is like the NC Coalition, but I am saying that groups like that tend to focus on manipulating others, on judging others, on trying to usurp other’s rights, while not taking the responsibility of making the world a better place for the children already here.

      You might have seen this article about the abortion debate here in TX: http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/26/politics/texas-abortion-bill/index.html?hpt=hp _t1

      And the irony of the last sentence: “‘In Texas, we value all life,’ Gov. Perry TX. Said on the eve of the state’s 500th execution.”

      • I do see the irony of it and I suspect we would both agree on the subject of capital punishment. But the topic of capital punishment and abortion are two completely different things. Dealing with human beings that are perfectly innocent and exceptionally vulnerable is substantively different than dealing with those that have committed a heinous disregard for human life.

        • @Joe K Absolutely not. There have been innocent people put to death. Moreover, in taking life, you are playing “god,” judging, choosing who lives and who doesn’t. These are some of the same arguments used in the abortion debate. You just happen to define life at a different point than I do.

          AND according to the religious doctrine religions subscribe, too, we’re all born with sin.

          • I find it oddly curious that most of the non-believers in this forum seem to keep refering to God yet the believers (all 2 of us) have yet to bring God into the equation at all. Kind of funny in a ironic sort of way…

            In the specific case of a flawed trial, you are correct there would not be an objective difference between the ACT of an abortion and the ACT of killing a murderer. BUT the intent of the killer (i.e. the judge) in this case is substantivly different than the killer in an abortion. The people executing the capital punishment verdict have the intention of killing a guilty human being to protect society from further harm by that individual or by other individuals who learn a lesson because of an act they have already taken. Whereas, the object of abortion, i.e. the innocent and vulnerable human being, is not being killed with the intention of protecting society based on an act by the individual being killed.

            By the way your flawed trial example is a perfect example of the existence of Objective truth vice one of the subjective “we all define our own reality” truth you have previously claimed to adhere to.

            • @Joe K. Again, not true. It is mentioned several times throughout these comments that Catholicism is a reference point. More over the sanctity of life that you use to buoy your argument is grounded in the idea of (as you mention) each life being special, each person being unique. (I’m paraphrasing here.) Those are religious terms, not scientific. Science does not look at the individual life but of life, does not look at the “soul” but what gives one consciousness. We refer to your “god,” not God.

              Clearly if there were an Objective Truth, then a man would not pay the price for a crime he didn’t commit. Not only do we define our own reality, but we are also capable of manipulating the reality of others.

              • So are you saying that the only way you can justify the sanctity of life is through religion? Does life deserve to be treated with sanctity, Yes or No?

                Just because there is an objectivly true answer as to whether the person commited a crime or not does not logically conclude that the jury would find that truth out.so your statement doesn’t logically connect.

                • LanceThruster

                  So if one is convinced of the sanctity of human life, a God that drowns babies (& puppies and kittens) because said God botched the whole creation deal and couldn’t find the “UNDO” button, would be a pretty despicable entity, no? Yes?

                  The sanctity of the life of nature beyond the natural order is a separate issue.

            • LanceThruster

              I find it oddly curious that most of the non-believers in this forum seem to keep refering to God yet the believers (all 2 of us) have yet to bring God into the equation at all. Kind of funny in a ironic sort of way…

              I don’t find it curious at all since you’ve declared by fiat that God is to be considered the default position, but to attempt to support such a claim is not practical because it would be over our heads.

              If you’re saying that ethics can be derived without any need for a God, then maybe we finally agree on something.

    • LanceThruster

      I snark therefore I am.

      ~ LT

      Snarkito ergo sum

  26. LanceThruster

    Couple of interesting pieces (at least I thought they were)

    “Bono’s Faith Offensive” — http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/06/26/bonos-faith-offensive/

    – and –

    “Pro-Life, My Left Tit!” — http://herlanderwalking.wordpress.com/2013/06/20/pro-life-my-left-tit/

  27. Deb, I’m curious… how did your “friend” react to your recommendation for the Freedom from Religion page? Is she still your “friend”?

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