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Why Roe Vs. Wade is, itself, unconstitutional

by: Rights

I won't bore you by reviewing the Preamble to the Constitution. We all know that life is considered one of the inalienable rights of all men.
No Supreme Court Justice would accept the Constitutionality of the murder of a fully grown, fully reproductive citizen (at least not without due process).
No Supreme Court Justice would accept the Constitutionality of the murder of a not yet fully grown, but fully reproductive citizen.
No Supreme Court Justice would accept the Constitutionality of the murder of a not yet fully grown, not yet fully reproductive citizen.
No Supreme Court Justice would accept the Constitutionality of the murder of a largely ungrown, but not yet ambulatory citizen.
Each of these changes in a human being is recognized as a stage in human development. No one argues that a pre-pubescent and post-pubescent person are somehow two different people. We do not cease to be what we were when we have moved into the next stage of development. In fact, the reaching of a stage such as puberty, while it might appear to be rapid and dramatic, is actually only the culmination of long years of development. During those years the reproductive organs steadily move toward maturity. The growth hormones continue unabated. With the release of the first reproductive hormones, the growth hormones begin to diminish until further growth no longer occurs.
For the Supreme Court to have reached the decision that was Roe Vs. Wade, there had to be some way to separate that mature, fully grown, fully reproductive member of "all men" from its previous appearance at various stages in its development. It was not Constitutionally possible to allow the destruction of that person; so it was necessary to prove that the mature adult was somehow not the same person at an earlier stage.
And in that lies the Constitutional error. The process of development of a human being begins with the division of a single cell and continues for the next 20 years or so. Despite some appearances to the contrary, there are really no sudden leaps in a process that requires all of those roughly seventy thousand days.
So the Justices employed some arbitrary standards that have no place in Constitutional law. There is no way to determine when a native born citizen was not a citizen. There is no way, therefore, to determine whether or not an unborn citizen is a citizen. And, failing to prove that, we must grant the same rights of citizenship to the citizen at all stages of his development. Even if there were a way to separate the citizen from his previous self, a Supreme court Justice would not be qualified to make that determination.
Roe vs. Wade set the dangerous precedent of allowng laws involving the rights of citizens to be based on unprovable concepts. We are fortunate that none have yet attempted to make use of that precedent to argue that those among us who have not developed to a state of self sufficiency may be destroyed because it is the right of those imposed with their caretaking not to have to deal with any who can be said not to be covered under the Constitional definition of "all men".
I honestly believe that, when the matter is again returned to the Supreme Court,
the Court will recognize the errors of the Roe Vs. Wade decision. Unfortunately,
I also realize how little a consolation that is as the slaughter continues.

reply from: yoda

There are many thorny problems with the process by which Roe was reached, and with the actual result, including the one you mention. But Justices making arbitrary decisions is nothing new, Blackmun himself called it an "exercise in raw judicial power", as if he was bragging about throwing his weight around illegally. Unfortunately there is no legal redress for this sort of illegal social engineering on the part of the justices, other than for congress to suddenly find the courage to rein them in. They could impeach some of them, or they could simply pass a law that the whole area of abortion law was off limits to the federal courts. But I don't look for either to happen.

reply from: Rights

I hear what you're saying. As I often put it myself, "There is no law, there are only judges". The same is true, I know of the Supreme Court.
But the current court is a different court. And I really do believe this court might view the matter differently.
Unfortunately, the checks and balances established by the Constitution left far to much unbridled power in the hands of the Judicial,

reply from: Sigma

I think you need to read the Preamble a bit more closely. It mentions nothing of life.
"Due Process" refers to what the State must do to lawfully take rights away, not what private citizens must do for each other. Killing a burglar does not require "due process" as the death penalty does.
They can. It's called "birth".
I'm a bit puzzled over the logic of this sentence: There is no way to determine when a native born citizen was not a citizen.
If the subject in question was not native born, they could not be a native born citizen, could they? The Constitution lays some guidelines as to who is and is not a citizen. One way, as you mentioned, is to be born in America. The fetus obviously does not fulfill this requirement. What criteria are you using to call the fetus a citizen?

reply from: dignitarian

Good post "Rights".
However, I would differ with you on the point about the universal consideration for the inalienability of the fundamental rights of human existence.
Just because this particular notion constitutes truth in the perspective of the natural law, doesn't mean that everyone recognizes it as such. For that matter, some people don't even seem to understand that this concept exists at all.
You don't have to convince me though. Moreover you wouldn't have to convince our nation's founders and all the deepest thinkers since the age of reason first began.
Nevertheless, others remain in various states of denial or ignorance. Insisting instead upon personal perception and subjective standards of right and wrong bounded not by principle nor even by reason.
Thus (in their minds) whatever they deem to be right or true must then on that basis alone be right or true. And the unborn child is justifiably denied (again in their minds) the recognition as a "Person" deserving of protection under the law simply because they deem it must be so since it suits their personal subjective passions. With thinking like this, what use would anyone have for a universal principle such as inalienable rights?
Welcome to the forum.
Regards,
Dignitarian

reply from: Rights

Quite right about many things Sigma. But the State can murder a citizen (as with murderers) after applying due process. Is the difference in your mind that abortion is not performed by the State, and that, therefore, ending a life is acceptable as long as only private persons are involved?
If such is the case, then Roe vs. Wade is invalid because it is not a Constitutional issue. Hmmm..............good argument against Roe Vs. Wade. Ending a life is not a Constituional issue and should, therefore, be left up to the States.

reply from: Rights

You are quite right dignatarian. And I certainly recognize the existence of the concept of "Right is what I think it is"
But Roe vs Wade is a legal issue. And my hope is to generate enough thought on the subject of the Constitutionality of the issue, that those whose job will be to demonstrate that aspect to the Supreme Court on the next go-round (and there will be one) will have new ammunition to offer.
I think it was Lavoisier who said, "Chance favors the prepared mind ".

reply from: Rights

By the way you are right. The Preamble does not mention life. That right is, instead, granted by the Sixth Amendment with the words;
nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law
But you have a good point. The several States have laws regarding such things as the killing of a burglar. Those laws vary from State to State. I don't know what cases have been brought to the Supreme Court to test those laws. But, it seems likely that the Supreme Court would choose not to hear such a case as long as due process was involved.
Roe vs. Wade was a test of statute denying a woman her choice of abortion. Perhaps those same states should now pass laws denying a father or grandparents the right to prevent the destruction of living embryos whose DNA could be proven to have come from the father. That is effectively the case now; but I know of no Statutes to enforce it.
Such a Statute would give a father the ammunition to force the Court to decide whether a father has the right to prevent the destruction of his progeny. Of course, there may be such laws, so I will have to research it further. And I will also try to find out if such a law has been tested.
In the meantime, thanks for what just might be a great idea. If I find no such existing law, I know just the State Rep who would be happy to help me get such a law on the books of my State.

reply from: Rights

Oh yes, and by the way, if your definition of a citizen requires "birth" it brings up some difficult issues. For example, is surgery "birth"? I guess your answer would have to be yes; otherwise those removed surgically could never officially be called citizen.
And what about a situation in which, for whatever medical reasons, doctors decided to halt the contractions of a woman whose infant would likely have survived and then later the doctors allowed the birth to continue normally.
Shall we tell that person later in life, "Your mother's doctors prevented you from becoming a citizen for several days?" The problem is you still see that separated infant as somehow essentially different from what it was the moment before the detachment of the placenta. But birth is not black magic. Puppies do not turn into kittens. And if you take a DNA sample before and after birth, the match will hold up as proof of identity in any court in the land.
How surprised Doctors must be to remove an "it" from a mother's body, cut the cord, and suddenly have a citizen appear in their hands.
As for "There is no way to determine when a native born citizen was not a citizen. " Obviously you can determine at what time a naturalized citizen becomes a citizen. But for a native born citizen, there never was a magic moment (not even birth) at which that person suddenly changed from something else into a person. And, therefore. if it is a person, it was a person. Call me cynical , but I just don't believe in magic.

reply from: Rights

I will apologize for one thing. I realize the term "citizen" involves a legal concept. So I accept that a citizen does not exist until birth.
But "human" is not a legal term and I do not accept the concept that a human being does not exist until birth. Perhaps that is exactly the problem. Perhaps America, which proudly proclaims its support for human rights, does not actually support human rights at all. Perhaps our real support is only for "citizen's rights".

reply from: pray4em

I agree, the S.C. not just interpreted the law they straight out changed it.

reply from: dignitarian

Just a note for whatever it is worth: In the United States, if the general question is whether someone is free to kill you or not, your citizenship is really not the issue.
Dig

reply from: Sigma

That was not really the point of what I said, I was pointing out that "due process" is binding on gov't, not private citizens. Ending a life can indeed be acceptable, depending on the State and depending on the situation.
In a sense; however, the State restricting the rights of its citizens is a Constitutional issue. In the case of Roe, SCOTUS found that the State did not have a "compelling interest" in restricting a woman's freedom or to infringe upon her privacy. The issue wasn't abortion itself, it was whether the State could restrict a woman's access.
Those words are actually found in the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments. Read literally, neither phrase guarantees a "right to life" but instead denies the gov't the power to take such away without due process of law.
Outside of a woman's body there certainly is a case. However, I doubt that such could be construed as to infringe upon a woman's freedom in this matter.
I don't know, would surgery be considered birth? Who would decide that question?
There is certainly an important difference. Before the cord is cut or the placenta birthed it is connected to another, living off of her bodily functions. After birth, it is physically connected to none; it becomes an autonomous individual.
Few would deny that what the woman carries is human.

reply from: pray4em

The law does not give us the right to life.
The constitution does not give us the right to life.
The government does not give us the right to life.
Mankind does not give us the right to life.
The constitition recognizes that the right to life comes from our Creator. Denying anyone the right to life is against the law of our Creator, and against the law of the Constitution of the United States.

reply from: dignitarian

pray4em:
Well said.
Dig

reply from: pray4em

( a short essay )
Q. How can we tell when someone has been denied the right to life?
A. they never existed
B. they're still living
C. they're dead
D. is for Denial

reply from: pray4em

If I'm driving 40 mph in a 25 mph zone and drive past an officer, but the officer thinks the law is unfair and decides not to enforce the law.
I'm I still braking the law?
Is the law unfair?

reply from: yoda

Exactly, pray4em. If your right to life has not been denied, you are still alive. That simple little principle tells us why the right to live is the premier "right" of all rights.

reply from: Sigma

The Constitution recognizes no such thing. A belief in a God is just that, a belief. If anything, the Constitution Preamble mentions the Blessing of Liberty, but not life.
And if there is no such law? Are you still breaking the law?

reply from: pray4em

The constitution specifies the right to life is protected by law and the declaration of independence specifies the source of this right comes from our Creator. Nowhere in the constitution dose it mention any exceptions to the rule. The 14th amendment specifies the right to life as a privilege of citizenship but dose not deny this right to non-citizens. If left to natural law the unborn would not die.

reply from: Sigma

The Constitution specifies no such thing; the passage, read literally, prevents the gov't from taking life away without due process. A 'right to life' is, at best, interpreted into the Constitution.
There are absolutely exceptions. Due process is the exception. Inalienable rights are, flatly, not supported by the text or meaning of the Constitution.

reply from: yoda

Sort of like the "right to kill" was interpreted?

reply from: pray4em

Of course there is such a thing as natural law, if an apple falls from the tree it will hit the ground, if you plant the seed it will grow. Sex makes babies and, without the deliberate act that kills, the baby will be born.
Of course the "right to life" is protected by the constitution, and there is no exception like "except people without fingers."
Justice is based on the Truth the whole Truth and nothing but the Truth, so help me God. Not denial and half truth, if I can get away with it.

reply from: Sigma

There are exceptions like "except those killed by due process".

reply from: yoda

Oh NO....... not another EUPHEMISM!!
"Due process" = Abortion

reply from: Rights

Unfortunately another part of the problem, yodavater. The Constitution speaks of the illegality of depriving one of life "without due process". That means such things as Grand Juries, arrest warrants, the right to a defense, the concept of innocence before proven guilty, a trial by jury, a sentence of guilty, endless appeals, etc., etc, etc. Then, after perhaps a dozen years of due process, the State may actually deprive one of life.
But to end a life by abortion requires no process whatsoever. A woman is not required even to fill out a deposition that explains why she feels that continuing to term is not in her best interests.
But the argument is always the same, "The fetus is just a part of my body which I am, therefore, entitled to remove." Oh really? Then by that reasoning, the State should be required to honor the request of anyone who wanted to have their heart or their lungs or their kidneys removed. Such a decision by the Court would certainly resolve the euthanasia issue.

reply from: yoda

No human being has an organ called a "fetus". If a fetus was a part of a woman's body, she could be both male and female, black and white, middle aged and a few days old, two different blood types, rh positive AND negative, have and not have a genetic disorder, two distinct DNA codes, and be both a host and a parasite, all at the same time.
It's an extremely dishonest canard.

reply from: Sigma

"Due process" is not binding on private citizens, it is binding on the State and Federal Gov't. The State has no involvement in the woman's decision whether to abort or carry her pregnancy to term.
More like: "I have no legal obligation to allow any one or any thing to live attached to me against my will and I am, therefore, entitled to remove that other even if that other will die"

reply from: Rights

By the way, Sigma. I have, many times, read your "Faith is a substitute for knowledge". So let's test the knowledge involved in the abortion issue.
We'll start by drawing a straight line to represent the development of a human being. We'll segment the line into increments representing months. At the beginning of the line, we'll write "conception". At the end of the line, we'll write "full maturity". Then we'll ask 1000 people to mark the line at a point where they believe the protections of the Constitution begin. We won't bring up the legal concept of citizenship; because we all know that the Constitution is not applied separately to citizens and non-citizens. We do not deprive an alien killer of life without due process.
When the people have registered their "knowledge", we'll examine the line. One would expect that a large number will have chosen the moment of conception. Certainly it will also be a large number that will have chosen the end of the ninth month. It seems certain that quite a few will have chosen the beginning of the third trimester. There will probably be marks in places that will surprise both of us.
So now we will have the basis of a statistical analysis. Of what? Of knowledge? Absolutely not! Those who have chosen the conception point have done so on faith (with or without the capital "F"). Those who have selected the birth month have done exactly the same thing. Consensus is not knowledge (we once universally believed the world was flat). Nor is any single piece of "scientific" evidence ("It now breathes on its own"). The issue for both sides is one of belief, not knowledge.
One side believes that we have condoned a slaughter of innocents unprecedented in the history of mankind. Nothing conceived by Adolf Hitler or Atilla the Hun comes even close.
The other side is equally convinced that we do no such thing; but that to deny abortion would be to deny a basic right to women.
But there is no real proof, no "knowledge".
So here is my question. When it is necessary to make a decision on a subject for which no proof exists, and when that decision could, therefore, result in condoning an evil practice either way; might it not be better to opt for the lesser evil?
I am a man of Faith. But I base my Pro-Life stance not on faith, but on knowledge.
That knowledge is of the fact that no one can offer the proof (with or without reasonable doubt) of their response to the question, "At what stage in the development of a human being is that human being entitled to the protection of the Constitution?"
My decision is based on the knowledge, that, without proof, I could be wrong. And, if I am wrong, I choose to deny a right to women rather than to condone the slaughter of innocents.
Those who are convinced they have the proof will now trot out that proof. And I will say, "No. You only have the belief that there is proof."

reply from: yoda

An excellent question, rights. Men and women with an ounce of compassion for their fellow human beings will always err on the side of caution, on the side of the lesser damage to innocent life. Sadly, our society is only partially made up of such men and women.
As well you should. Sadly, there are no posters here who will defend their advocacy of the practice of killing unborn babies with any genuine attempt to prove their correctness. There are only cold, unfeeling legalists who will tell you the law is on their side, regardless of right or wrong.

reply from: Sigma

This is not exactly the case, but I won't debate the issue as it is not the point of your post.
There is certainly "knowledge" of the facts involved. You are right that it is opinion whether the fetus deserves rights (beyond legalities), but that does not mean that there is no knowledge involved. It is how this knowledge interacts with morals and values that lead to these opinions. I, for example, hold the value that those with an individual consciousness and personality are worthy of moral consideration. I know that during the time-frame that the majority of abortions are performed there is not the machinery necessary to support consciousness. Therefore I am of the opinion that the fetus is not worthy of moral consideration during this time-frame.
Violating the rights of women, even for a noble cause, is not something I intend to condone. I believe allowing abortion is the lesser evil.
Your knowledge may be wrong, but your belief cannot really be wrong. It is an opinion.

reply from: Rights

Sigma, you keep saying that "due process' is not binding on private citizens". You
are, of course, right. But that ignores the fact that those offenses granted to the State only after "due process" are completely forbidden tp private citizens under common law. The Constitution provides for incarceration only after "due process".
That means the Constitution considers incarceration inherently wrong without such legal processes. It does not mean it is unconstitional for the States to make laws forbidding private incarceration.
And, as for "I have no legal obligation to allow any one or any thing to live attached to me against my will and I am, therefore, entitled to remove that other even if that other will die" , does that mean that if it is against my will to have my heart attached to me I have the right to remove it?

reply from: Sigma

I'm afraid I'm a bit unclear what you are driving at here.
Side-stepping the "kill yourself" issue, if a hospital is willing to remove your heart and allow you to live on a life support machine, is there any law to prevent this?

reply from: Rights

"I believe allowing abortion is the lesser evil. "
I thank you for your admission that it is your belief and not your knowledge.

reply from: Sigma

I never intimated otherwise. Morality is a function of belief, though the moral reasoning to reach such a conclusion is a result of knowledge and logic.

reply from: Rights

Sigma
There is probably is no law that would prevent a hospital from doing so. Of course, Dr Kevorkian might argue with me.

reply from: Rights

Sigma:
I find this statement:
"Violating the rights of women, even for a noble cause, is not something I intend to condone."
So interesting, that I would like to adopt it for a moment, the better to explore it.
So. let's see. I am a pregnant woman, carrying a female child; and I choose to abort. And what is the result of my choice ? I have no daughter. So far, so good, that is clear.
But what if I make the other choice? Then I have a daughter. And what if she grows up and makes the same choices I made? Then she becomes pregnant.
And now she has the right to an abortion.
But wait! I chose to have an abortion. By so doing I prevented my daughter's birth. And, by denying her birth, I denied her the choices which would lead to her pregnancy. And by denying her those choices I have denied her the right to have an abortion.
But wait! Now I will have no granddaughter. And that child has, in turn, lost the same rights. And that child will have no daughter................................
It seems to me that by exercising my rights, I have denied rights to an endless line of women. So I have exercised my right; and by so doing have violated the rights of perhaps tens of thousands of women.
It's an interesting approach for someone who does not intend to condone violating the rights of women.

reply from: Rights

Sigma:
I just saw the error of my reasoning. You will of course say, "No one except the mother who aborted lost any rights. After the first abortion, none of those other woman ever existed."
And that is an interesting concept. Esentially it says "There is a differnce between removing you from your rights and removing your rights from you."

reply from: Sigma

Or something similar Though I will go one step further and say the fetus being aborted never existed as a person either. Legally, it did not fulfill the requirements for Constitutional protection, and either "you from your rights" or "removing your rights from you" would be correct, depending on the perspective. Violating the certain rights of the pregnant woman for such an entity makes no logical sense.
Morally and philosophically speaking, however, there would be no 'you' to afford rights to since there is no unique individual consciousness, no feeling or thought, no existence in actuality. A body with no brain would have no individuality to afford personal rights to. Thus it would not be immoral, imo, to abort such a creature to remove the detriment of the woman involved.

reply from: Rights

With such a well developed sense of "now" and "me", I guess we should just be happy that Eve didn't have an abortion doctor handy. But then, if she had, none of us would ever have have a consciousness, would we?
And Roe Vs. Wade would never have happened.

reply from: Sigma

Nope, but it would quiet down the religious nuts would it not?

reply from: pray4em

Life is Self Evident ..... ummm
Life is Self Evident ..... ahhh
Life is Self Evident ..... it's so confusing

reply from: yoda

Ah, a peek into your own private moral/philosophical dictionary.......to give us your personal definition of the WORD "YOU"!!!!!
Where do you keep it when you're not using it? In a dark, damp place perhaps?

reply from: Rights

Sigma, despite your defense of your beliefs which circled the wagons and ended up declaring your beliefs were based on knowledge, I'm still unclear about your knowledge.
So help me out. You said earlier that you could identify the point at which an embryo developed consciousness, or at least the point at which the mechanisms for consciousness did not exist. I'm sure you are aware that at two months the fetus is very active. So here is my first question. Is it your belief (based, of course, on your knowledge) that motor capabilities exist in the absence of consciousness? And can you direct me to the study which supports your knowledge in that regard?
My other question deals with the subject of Eve and abortion. You responded to that with the nicely turned phrase:
"Nope, but it would quiet down the religious nuts would it not?"
My question here, I guess, is whether or not you believe (based on your knowledge, of course) that there was an Eve.

reply from: Sigma

To be clear, I do acknowledge that it is my opinion that the fetus, during the time frame the vast majority of abortions are performed, does not deserve moral consideration (as a born child would). Knowledge of fetal cortical development combined with other principles of mine led to this conclusion.
What sort of motor capabilities are you looking at?
Good question No, I have little to no evidence of the existence of God and without that I doubt the existence of an Eve persona as described in the Bible.

reply from: Rights

"What sort of motor capabilities are you looking at?"
Well sigma, I'm a liitle surprised that with your knowledge of fetal development you would even need to ask the question. But, so be it. I tried to be careful in my choice of source to ensure they were not Pro Life. This group will not give referrals for abortion; but they seem otherwise neutral. They do offer all manner of counseling including post abortion. But, feel free to check out other sites and see if they disagree with this timeline.
From:
http://www.wprc.org/about.phtml

Week 5
The embryo's tiny heart begins to beat by day twenty-one. The brain has developed into 5 areas and some cranial nerves are visible. Arm and leg buds are visible and the formation of the eyes, lips, and nose has begun. The spinal cord grows faster than the rest of the body giving a tail like appearance which disappears as the embryo continues to grow. The placenta begins to provide nourishment for the embryo.
Week 8
The embryo is reactive to its environment inside the amniotic sac where it swims and moves. Hands and feet can be seen. At the end of week 8, the embryonic period is over and the fetal stage begins.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Notice that significant brain development has already occurred by week 5. Also note the words "has developed" clearly imply that there has been brain development before week 5. Since I am not sure at which stage of brain development your knowledge indicates consciouness has arisen, I'll limit my comments to just these statements of fact.
Other sites take the description of motion even further to describe the opening and closing of the fist. Also note that this occurs, not at the end of week 8, but during week 8, which means it can occur as early as the end of the 7th week.
If I have answered your question, now would you answer mine? Is it your belief that being "reactive to its environment" occurs in the absence of consciousness?

reply from: Sigma

Come now, such a dig is not needed.
I appreciate that, and trust that it is not.
Brain development begins fairly early and continues throughout gestation, but awareness and pain is generally accepted not to occur until the end of the second trimester/start of the third trimester. Consciousness is generally associated with the cortex, which develops its characteristic convolutions in the third trimester, as well as begins to recieve signals from other parts of the brain around then.
From http://www.advisorybodies.doh.gov.uk/genetics/gtac/inutero.htm
Such very early interventions do not raise the issue of fetal awareness and pain (The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists Working Party Report on Fetal Awareness, October 1997 [2], concluded that it is not possible for the fetus to be aware of events before 26 weeks' gestation
Yes.
From http://www.parliament.uk/post/pn094.pdf
The fetus is capable of movement from a very early age. At 7 weeks it can move its head in response to a stimulus around the mouth. At ten weeks, the palms will flex or toes curl if touched. Spontaneus jerks of limbs and squirming movements become routine and towards the end of the fourth month, these are detectable by the woman. These movements are automatic and serve to sort the developing neurons into efficient organisational pathways; without them, limbs would not develop. At 17-18 weeks, they start to subside, as the developing brain regions start to inhibit the primitive activity of the existing central nervous system. Ultimately movements are brought under brain control and from six months onwards, the level of fetal activity increases again.
The spinal cord and brain stem differentiate earlier than higher brain function and structures. Reflex and awareness are separate.

reply from: yoda

Seems to me that talking about the amount of pain an unborn baby feels in a abortion is a little like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. The ship is doomed anyway.

reply from: Rights

"Come now, such a dig is not needed"
If it came across as a dig, I apologize. I was just a little surprised to hear you asking the question when I was quite sure you had, long ago, examined all the physical issues involved, including the point at which motion on the part of the embryo could be detected.
First, let me state that I have always been involved in technical pursuits. In the 60s it was word processors and data processors (yes, both did exist). By the late 70s it was industrial robotics. In the 90s it was telecommunications. And, throughout, I had a great thirst for knowledge ranging from the scientific theory, through the empirical proofs, to the practical applications.
And that was where my problems began. The theory of fire had evolved from phlogiston, through Lavoisier's "assumption of oxygen", to molecular chemistry's "oxidation". Nor is the term "evolved' an adequate description for what happened to the old theory. Initially, attempts were made to hang on to the old theory in face of new observations. Thus, the phlogiston theory backers at first attempted to handle Lavoiser's observation that burned material gained weight by suggesting that phlogiston was lighter than air, and its loss, therefore, resulted in a heavier material. And while the theory required to explain the observations of Lavoisier was never abandoned, it required major modifications to describe the latter observation that oxidation didn't require oxygen.
At first, I was convinced that the revelation that the old empirical proofs were false, could not apply to the empirical proofs of the enlightened 20th century. The theories were right, and proven by the enlightened empirical proofs. Then, that began to change. I was taught that light was an energy form which traveled in waves. There was empirical proof. But Einstein had expounded the quantum theory of light (particles, not energy waves) There is empirical proof. What to do? They did what any reasonable scientific person would do. They clung to both. But some felt compelled to combine them by saying. "Well, it is a wave form with some of the characteristics of a particle." That description causes its own problems because it defies accepted definitions of both
Today I chuckle at the logical convolutions theorists have to go through to defend their theories. Nothing can exceed the speed of light. But in the first ten billionths of a second of the "Big Bang", the universe expanded at fantastic multiples of the speed of light. Reading their handling of that one is enough to quiet the loudest of dissenters who will feel intense dizziness at having been spun around with great mental violence.
In the end, I conclude that there is no such thing as empirical proof. It is an illusion, and, over time is always recognized as such. Man is a wonderful observer. And he is certainly capable of making use of his observations. Mankind has gone to the Moon. But it was not Newtonian physics that got us there. We had Newtonian Physics in Goddard's day. But Goddard did not go to the Moon. It took decades and tens of thousands of failures which led us to trial and error modifications. Eventually, the modifications we made based on observation resulted in success.
I realize just how vastly I diverge from our discussion. I felt it necessary to set the stage for what I am about to say.
If you place a probe in my brain and find that when that probe is activated, I cannot move my arm, you would say, "That portion of your brain controls the movement of your arm". I would not disagree. But how do you locate my consciousness? Do you stick a probe in my cortex, activate it and then say, "Hello, are you there?'. And if then I do not answer, do you say "Aha, we have found the seat his consciousness." Or do you stick the probe in while monitoring my brain wave activity, and, seeing it flatline, say, "Aha, we have found the seat his consciousness." If that's the case, I think it's a pretty rough test.
Or is it thought that defines being? Shall we say then, "I think, therefore, I am, and also. "I move, but do not think, therefore I am not." And can existence really be boiled down to a small collection of neurons? Of that I say, there is no empirical proof.
I consider it the ultimate arrogance of mankind that we consider ourselves so wise that we have convinced ourselves that, not only are we great observers, but that we also clearly understand the basic principles which result in our observations. Yet, for all our wisdom. we still cannot cure most cancers, or Aids, or Hepatitis, or Malaria or.......................................................
I will not indulge in the arrogance (although, honestly, I once did). It is for that very reason that I believe neither side in the abortion debate can offer empirical proof. Indeed, I believe empirical proof of anything to be mere fantasy. And, since I am not wise enough to discern the truth, I will abide by my election of the option to side with the decision which offers the least potential for evil. I am Pro Life.
I am sure you would not debate religion. You would be totally frustrated by the inability of the other side to offer empirical proof of their position. Likewise, I must withdraw from this debate. To the extent that man labels his ideas as "theory", he is being honest. When he offers his "proof" of such theories, he is being arrogant. Refusing to accept the existence of empirical proof is closed minded. And a closed minded person should not debate.
So I won't.

reply from: yoda

I happen to think that you are perfectly correct in your position that "proof" is in the eye of the beholder, and further that there is no "empirical proof" of any value to the abortion debate.
This debate is not about science, as long as no one misrepresents science to try to gain an advantage. This debate, if conducted honestly, would be totally about emotions, values, and feelings. Those are abstract things that are not subject to proof of any kind, nor authority of any kind.
The immediate topic, "brain development", is an irrelevant diversion, IMO, and should be considered a red herring argument. Regardless of it's stage of development, a baby is a baby is a baby, and it's still a human being. The species classification of unoborn humans is not contested by honest debaters.
And logic itself has a very limited role in this debate. The only way one can employ logic about abortion is by comparing people's emotions, values, and feelings about similar things, and trying to analyze the differences and the similarities.
Stick around, your honesty and sophistication are appreciated.

reply from: Sigma

Indeed it would be. While the evidence is not as rough as that, it is not definitive.
In response to your post, I must agree with yodavater that you are very honest and I respect that. It was very insightful, and perhaps I am in error trusting current knowledge as much as I do. In any case, however, I look forward to future debates with you.

reply from: Rights

"This debate is not about science, as long as no one misrepresents science to try to gain an advantage."
And I agree with that yodavater. But there is a problem.
Few humans walk around thinking, "I am in favor of killing innocents". Such thoughts are not in the interests of our emotional well being. So we need an acceptable way (to ourselves as well as others) to justify the actions we advocate.
Some might call it "denial".
But the justification becomes very real. Those who find it believe genuinely that their actions are fully justified. They harbor not even the smallest doubt that they are right. And how do they do that?
One way, certainly, is to rely on science. If science says, "At this point the embryo does not think, is not aware of itself and can not feel pain", it becomes easier to separate this non-cognizant entity from mankind, who, we all know, does think, is aware of itself, and does experience pain.
From the time we first enter school, we are immersed in the knowledge of man. Most reach a point at which that presumed knowledge becomes irrefutable. Knowledge seems to be the only truth. For some it has become God.
It is not surprising, then, that when science draws conclusions that an embryo is, at some stage, no more than a fish, that scientific data will convince many that abortion at that stage amounts to no more than the elimination of a fish.
I know all of this because my life long immersion in science once had me close to that point. I was fortunate that the same insatiable curiosity which drove me to pursue scientific knowledge also drove me to look at its cracks and inconsistencies.
And, in that process I discovered that man is fallible. And since science is a product of man, science is just as fallible.
So to you and I, yodavater, science is not the debate. But to many abortionists lack of cognizance becomes the shield against thinking of babies. And to the extent that science supports the concept of lack of cognizance, I will attack science.

reply from: Rights

Nice comment, Sigma. And greatly appreciated.
And please understand that, unlike some, I don't see Pro Choice as "the bad guys"
Instead, I see it as a dillema. I appreciate the desire to realize the concept of human rights and equality. Where we differ is in our understanding of the validity
of the evidence to help us resolve the dillema. And if I end up with no clear evidence in a dillema I can only resolve it by comparing the results of error in either choice.
Your comments lead me to believe you understand that

reply from: yoda

Yes, and denial is not a river.
There's a very telling point there. Probabykilling advocates as a group are a political action group looking for a moral justification for what they already have decided they want to do. They are not open-minded researchers, they are closed-minded people with an axe to grind. And the will grasp at almost any straw, scientific or not, to justify killing babies.
Except that "science" doesn't make those kinds of comparisons, only probabykilling advocates do that. Humans are never "no more than a fish", and no scientist worth his test tubes will say that.
I think you are attacking the wrong target there. Scientists only tell us what their instruments tell them, they never support the idea of a "dividing line between what's worthy of life and what's not".... that's strictly a probabykilling philosophical concept. Yes, there absolutely is a time when we consist of just one tiny cell, complete with nucleus, organelles, and a thin wall. And at that time, we are precisely what human being are suppose to be! That is the normal state of a new human being, and has been for millions of years.
So regardless of how undeveloped we in fact are at that stage, we are indeed full-fleged members of the human race. So any suggestion that our "worthiness for life" is dependent upon our developmental stage is pure hogwash promulgated by those seeking a rationalization for killing babies.

reply from: Sigma

That is an understandable and morally defensible position to take. However, even in that we would disagree, likely because of the differing values we hold. I would rather error on the side of personal freedom than allow our gov't to hold this authority over us, even in such a noble cause of saving a life. To violate the personal rights of one to save the life of another is not something I would generally support.

reply from: Sigma

Careful there, yodavater. You're generalizing an awful lot.

reply from: Rights

I will admit that our difference in values makes it difficult for me to debate the issues.
You see a woman as having a right to decisions regarding her own body. But you see no reason not to deny that she should have a body in the first place.
I see a person denied life as being a person denied all rights.
The concept that killing a woman on her way into an abortion is a denial of her rights, while killing her on her way out of an abortion is not, somehow entirely eludes me.
If those who insisted on creating a legal basis for human rights in the Constitution had been aborted, the government may legally have been entitled to deny all individual rights. And that, in your view, would have been OK because the mothers of those who insisted on providing that legal basis had the right to prevent the birth of those who would defend those rights.
To me it grants women far more power than was ever in the hands of any individual dictator or of any government. For if every woman decided to abort every embryo, civilization, and the every species of mankind would shortly disappear. I am not prepared to legally grant such limitless power either to government nor to individuals.
In my view the subject of human rights is entirely without significance until, first, there are humans.
Many of the signers of the Declaration of Independence also had input into the Constitution. If they failed to incorporate the view of human rights as expressed in the Declaration into the legitimizing format of the Constitution, I can only consider it an oversight. There is no historical account which indicates that between the writing of the two documents, they changed their minds.

reply from: Sigma

I don't understand this sentence. You appear to be saying that I believe killing a woman on her way to an abortion clinic is wrong, while killing her on her way home from an abortion clinic is not wrong. I do not believe this.
If every woman on the planet feels that having an abortion is the preferred option we have more problems than abortion alone. Such a problem should be solved, abortion should not be made illegal. Our goal should be making sure abortion is not the preferred option, not oppression to ensure our survival. That is not our way.
They would not need to change their minds. The Declaration was not intended to provide the basis of a workable society, the Constitution was.

reply from: Rights

"You appear to be saying that I believe killing a woman on her way to an abortion clinic is wrong, while killing her on her way home from an abortion clinic is not wrong."
I was careful not to use the words right or wrong. The issue was your sense of violation of rights. You have already stated that we have no right to life. Therefore
I would assume that the killing of a woman on her way into an abortion would be a denial of rights since it would prevent her from carrying out an abortion. But since there is no right to life, it would not be a denial of her rights to kill her after she had exercised her right to an abortion.
"If every woman on the planet feels that having an abortion is the preferred option we have more problems than abortion alone. Such a problem should be solved, abortion should not be made illegal"
My problem lies with vesting the power of life and death to anyone. The State does not claim such a power for itself (except by due process). I, as a man, have no such power. I cannot force a woman to abort my child (nor would I if I could, but that is not the point). The embryo may be "in' a woman's body, yet it is still part of a man. I would not support his life and death right either. Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.
Granting such a power does nothing to encourage responsibility. Before a woman chooses surgical abortion, she has made several choices, She has chosen not to abstain. I support her right to do so. She has chosen not to employ contraceptives. I support her right to do so. She has chosen not to employ early chemical abortion. I support her right to do so (though many would not) She has chosen not to give a child up for adoption. I support her right to do so. But now, having exercized several rights, she chooses to terminate a life. I do not support her right to do so.
The Constitution supports my right to bear arms. But if I use my gun to take a life the Constitution will not protect me. The Constitution grants me freedom of assembly. But if I turn it into a riot and kill someone the Constitution will not protect me. I could go on and on, but I'm sure you get the point.
I do not consider abortion a right, any more than you consider life a right. Abortion is a special privilege, granted only to women, and applicable only to those who have already made four previous choices
You say there is no right to life. I say the Declaration of Independence clearly indicates that those who wrote the Constitution clearly believed there was. And I say there is no right to denial of life.

reply from: Sigma

Actually my point was that there is no explicit right to life in the Constitution.
To continue with this hypothetical we would have to ignore two things. One, murder and justifiable homicide generally fall under State jurisdiction. The illegality of the killing falls under State law, not Constitutional law. Two, a right to life has been interpreted to exist in the meaning of the Constitution. I generally use the point of an explicit right to life in response to those who dispute the existance of other interpreted rights yet believe in a right to life.
With your example, the killer violated the woman's various freedoms (since we generally have the liberty to do what we wish without violating others rights), and thus would still be wrong with no right to life.
You do, in certain situations. To prevent your rights from being violated States allow various levels of defense. If you are being subjected to bodily harm, many States allow you to kill the one harming you. If your property rights are being violated, some States allow you to kill the one violating them.
And yet, I claim absolute power over my thoughts. None have the right to tell me what to think, so would I not have absolute power over my mind? I claim absolute power over how many use my body. None have the right to use my body to live except myself.
I'm not sure it is the business of the gov't to enforce personal responsibility. Encourage? Certainly. Enforce? No.
Adoption is a parenting choice, not a pregnancy choice. Since medical and surgical are two different methods of abortion and one may be more appropriate for certain situations, I am not sure why you separate the two.
Actually, I am not sure of your point.
The freedom necessary to acquire an abortion is a right.

reply from: Rights

BTW Sigma
The rights mentioned in the Constitution referred to those things in which it was felt State law might try to interfere. Common law forbids murder. The framers of the Constitution saw no need to specify a right to life. That did not mean they believed one had no right not to be murdered. They simply believed such things were covered in common law.
They likewise did not grant a right not to be raped, conned, burgled, beaten, tortured, etc. but failing to grant you the right to freedom from these things does not grant others the right to subject you to them. Which is why I say that if we have no right to life, we also have no right to terminate it.
Roe Vs Wade added that right to the perceived rights of the Constitution. That is not the mechanism of amendment called for in the Constitution. The wording of Roe Vs Wade is careful not to give the appearance of that having happened. But I see no other way to describe a process which grants the power of life termination
to a select few.

reply from: Rights

"To prevent your rights from being violated States allow various levels of defense. If you are being subjected to bodily harm, many States allow you to kill the one harming you. If your property rights are being violated, some States allow you to kill the one violating them"
Precisely my point about special privilege. I do have these rights. And so does everyone else. And if a woman's life were threatened by pregnancy, I would support her right to defend her life. But abortion rights are not based on rights available to all.
"Adoption is a parenting choice, not a pregnancy choice. Since medical and surgical are two different methods of abortion and one may be more appropriate for certain situations, I am not sure why you separate the two. "
Adoption is a pregnancy choice. You can not give a child up for adoption if you abort. If you choose adoption, you have chosen to carry full term. The parenting choice (you, or someone else) can only apply to a specific pregnancy choice.
As for medical vs. surgical, I was referring to the "morning after" pill. Some Pro Lifers see it as being the same as a surgical abortion. For me, since all fertilized eggs do not necessarily implant and grow, I see it more as a discouragement of implantation. I would not argue it with a Pro Lifer, but I am more comfortable with that thought than I am with the thought of waiting until surgical intervention becomes necessary.
"Actually, I am not sure of your point."
My point about arms and assembly rights is that my rights usually end where life and death issues begin. Even in self and property defense cases I have no life and death rights. It is true that courts will often turn from prosecution when they view a death as the inadvertent consequence of my defense. But they will scrutinize what options I may have had. And if they determine that I bypassed some reasonable option shy of taking a life, I will still stand trial. And if I got a gun and knowingly entered a confrontation which would result in my life being threatened, the court will likely see things differently. And finally, if I entered any situation in which death was the known, and therefore, premeditated consequences, I would do well not to mention "rights" at all.
"The freedom necessary to acquire an abortion is a right "
I've missed some subtlety here. Not sure what it was.

reply from: Sigma

Rights, I replied before your post above, so do not think I missed your previous post.
This is not the case. Before the ratification of the Fourteenth, the Constitution (or more specifically, the Bill of Rights) was not considered in force against the States, unless specifically indicated. The Bill of Rights (including unenumerated rights guaranteed by the Ninth) were a barrier to the Federal gov't, not State gov't. The Federal gov't could not infringe upon your right to bear arms, but the State could. This changed with the ratification of the Fourteenth in response to slavery, since the Constitution as it stood allowed States the authority to allow or disallow it. They no longer have that authority.
All of those things can be forbidden as they interfere with an individual's liberty. We do have the right to the freedom to remove another attached to us.
Roe added nothing to the Constitution. Roe was a question of State justification, not directly of abortion.

reply from: yoda

I think that the postings on this one forum alone bear that out. I've seen so many trite, flimsy little excuses offered as a rationalization for the taking of an innocent human life that I think the conclusion is inescapable that probabykilling advocates have an attitude and are looking for a validation for it.
Taking innocent human life ought to be treated very seriously, not dismissed as a mere exercise in "constitutional freedom" or some such esoteric concept. It's real human beings we're talking about here, not philosophical concepts..... which btw is another flimsy excuse given for killing babies..... "philosophical concepts".

reply from: Rights

Sigma:
A discussion of any aspect of human life is entirely without value in the absence of some common ground for the debate.
Regardless of your value system, it is impossible to uphold an opinion of what conditions should or should not exist until you have established the framework of what conditions can exist.
When your basic assumptions exclude the potential arguments, what argument can there be?
So, to me, the issue of human rights depends first on Human being. Note that I use the lower case for being, as I intend it for a verb. If there is any right that transcends the right for a Human to be, it becomes a contradiction of terms.
In order for us to evaluate the right to seek an abortion we first need to enquire of your mother whether she, given a second opportunity, would have chosen abortion. If her answer is yes, we then need to examine whether your mother's choice was freely made or whether, in some way, it was a violation of her rights. If, in that examination, it is discovered that her rights were violated, she could, of course, seek recourse.
Now the valid form of that recourse is arguable. If her right to seek an abortion transcends your right to exist, she may be within her rights to request a postpartum termination. Of course, that seems a little extreme. So in the interests of reason, she may ask that her right to make of you a non-entity in the legal sense be enforced. That seems a reasonable request, since, had she been allowed to do so in the first place, the result would have been the same. You would then, of course, have no rights. But the important thing is that her rights would have been upheld, at least as a matter of recourse. Or would it be your position that we have no right to have our denied rights redressed post facto? Or would it be your position that your rights existed postpartum and cannot be denied post-facto? Why not? We deny released felons the right to bear arms.
Does all of that seem absurd? Of course! But I see it as no more absurd than to argue that Human rights transcend Human being (again the small b). With Human being factored out, it ceases to be an issue of Human rights, and becomes only a question of your right. And, your right, outside of the issue of Human rights becomes a question of special interests.
I am reminded of one of the classic philosophical issues that went:
Assumption: God is all powerful.
Test of Assumption: Can he then make a rock so big he can't move it?
Some of the ancients who examined this considered it to be proof that God could not exist. I would hope that enlightened people will recognize that it has nothing at all to do with God.
In the end, I'm afraid I view your stance as the same kind of logical dislocation.

reply from: Rights

yodavater:
And I agree with what you have said.
Unfortunately, my agreement or lack thereof has no significance. The fact is that it occurs because our laws allow it to occur. And our laws allow it to occur because those who interpret our laws make their decisions based on precedent, logical argument, even at times, philosophy.
Guerillas can be defeated using guerilla tactics. But we won't do that. Terrorists can be defeated using terrorist tactics. But we won't do that. Crime can be defeated using criminal tactics. But we won't do that. So we have to settle for the fact that we will forever be plagued by guerilla warfare, terrrorism and crime.
That is why I choose to fight abortion using the same tactics that pro abortionists
used to attain their goal. I likely will never become master at their game. But I can try. It may be trite, it may be esoteric, but I see no other hope of ending legal abortion.

reply from: yoda

Interesting observation. But I hope you don't mean that literally, because that would require you to employ dishonesty.

reply from: Rights

Their arguments don't hold up to moral examination. They claim they hold up to logical examination. I'll keep trying to show them just how illogical they really are.
No dishonesty necessary.

reply from: tabithamarcotte

I had a teacher who asked that question, and all of us were stumped. So I thought about a lot, and I figured free will was quite a rock that God can't lift. Or at least he just doens't want to...
Anyways, sorry for getting off track, just had the need to say it...

reply from: Sigma

Rights, I must apologize for the delay. I have had little time recently.
Surely they are. Bodily integrity is available to all. Preventing another from using your body to live is available to all. If anything, giving the fetus the right to live attached to the woman against her will gives the fetus special privilege.
Adoption isn't an option during pregnancy. There are only two choices during the time frame we are speaking of: continue or abort.
With that logic, though, not all pregnancies naturally continue. One-third of all pregnancies end in natural abortion, so induced abortion could be viewed as a discouragement.
Yes, you do in a sense. You can kill someone trespassing upon your property in some States.
Some States more than others. Whether you must exercise other options (such as retreat) is not a hard and fast rule. Some States require no retreat whatsoever. Florida, for instance, allows you to shoot an intruder who is running for the door.
Freedom is a right. This includes the freedom to acquire an abortion.
What assumptions of mine exclude potential arguments? I have laid down the argument I employ.
"Transcends" in what way? Contraception, for example, prevents a Human from being. In my view abortion does as well, at least during the time frame the vast majority of abortions are performed. However, at some point we must consider the rights of the Human that is, instead of those of the Human that will or may be. If they are in conflict, at least.
This is rather outside of our discussion. Reparations for the violation of rights are a separate issue that may or may not be valid. The only recourse we speak of is changing the system so her rights are no longer violated.
Of course not. It has to do with logic.
yodavater,
Regardless of how justified you believe it may be, you did agree not to generalize in that way.

reply from: Rights

"What assumptions of mine exclude potential arguments? I have laid down the argument I employ."
The assumption is that fetus is somehow outside the protections of the Constitution. Justice Blackmun referred to it in his majority opinion. He argued that the fetus is not a "person" in the Constitutional sense. Without that, abortion would be seen as the taking of a life.
By making the statement that the fetus was a "non-person" the opinion negated any arguments that may have been made on the basis of conflicting rights. The door was closed with what, essentially was the statement, "The fetus has no rights". Period.
And, make no doubt that it is exactly this definition that is the basis for the entire Pro-Choice, Pro-Life disagreement. I know you argue that it doesn't matter. I know you point to my right to defend my home and my life by killing if necessary. But the burglar can avoid death by not being in my home. The fetus had no choice but to be where it is. The attacker can avoid death by failing to be a threat to my life. If the fetus is a threat to life, I think most Pro-Choicers would agree with the woman's right to remove the threat. Most States which had anti-abortion laws granted just such an exclusion.
And you may yet argue that the assignment of "non-person" status was not an assumption. But in reaching that conclusion the opinion refers to the fact that covered "persons" are mentioned only in the context of those who had been born. There was no such mention relative to the unborn. The assumption is, that if no such reference exists, it was never intended. And with that we have a new legal tenet, "lack of evidence is evidence".
Most Pro-Lifers do not see the fetus as a "non-person". Instead, they see a fully
qualified "person" entitled to the same rights as all other "persons", and, therefore. the act of abortion as simply murder which cannot be prevented by law. Pro-Lifers do not see the distinction between a "person" and "non-person" as being a matter of human development. They can see no moment at which, through smoke and mirrors, a "non-person" suddenly becomes a "person".
"Adoption isn't an option during pregnancy. There are only two choices during the time frame we are speaking of: continue or abort. "
I agree with the statement. There are many situations which require immediate decisions. But determining the legality of those decisions in the vacuum of future ramifications makes little sense either. A right which is validated for today is surely open to question if the result of that validation is the denial of a thousand rights tomorrow. I started another post which you may not have read, so I reproduce it here.
The Roe Vs. Wade decision yields some fascinating legal ramifications. Let's take a look at a hypothetical case and you'll see why.
The case presented:
Jane Doe contends the following:
On January 23, 1973, the day after the rendering of the Roe Vs, Wade decision, the plaintiff sought access to an abortion and was denied.
Unaware of what else she might do, the plaintiff simply continued the pregnancy to term. Her daughter is now 22 years old.
Ignorant of the law, the plaintiff was, until recently, unaware that she might be entitled to redress of her rights. Since she has recently become aware of that fact, she now asks the court for the following relief.
a. That the State be required to reimburse her for all costs associated with raising of a child.
b. That the daughter be terminated in compliance with the plaintiff's original decision.
It might be argued that the redress could not be directed at the daughter since she was not involved in the alienation of rights. However, Roe Vs. Wade states that a fetus is not a "person" as the term applies to the Constitution. So, if not a person, what is it? Well, the classical interpretation of that which is under your custody and control, thereby granting you the right to dispose of it as you see fit, is "property" And if the fetus is property, then the State, by denying the Mother her rights, illegally transferred that property to the custody and control of another (the daughter).
That, in turn, means that the daughter is in receipt of stolen goods. And, while the theft did not occur with her knowledge or complicity, she can still legally be required to divest herself of the stolen goods.
Now the Pro Choice people feel that there is no such thing as a right to life. So they would naturally support a decision to terminate the daughter; particularly since many of them believe that the right of the mother transcends the life of another anyway.
And would the Supreme Court intervene? Of course not. Don't forgot that the Constitution condones killing by the State, as long as there is "due process". And the upholding of such a well established precedent as that requiring a recipient of stolen goods to divest themselves of the those goods must surely be considered "due process".
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
When some of the same men who were later involved in the writing of the Constitution, wrote "all men are created equal" did they think of creation as birth? Or did they recognize that there was no magic in birth and that the creation had actually occured nine months before?
To me, the real Constitutional issue rests on the answer to that question, rather than on "lack of evidence is evidence".

reply from: Sigma

I disagree. Had this decision not happened, or the decision was that the fetus is considered a person under the Fourteenth Amendment (though still would not and could not have full Constitutional protection), the decision of whether abortion is justified would be left to the States. Pro-life people would not be content with certain States allowing abortion.
And thus your examples are negated. The fetus cannot choose not to be a threat to the woman's life, yet that is irrelevant when the woman can choose to kill it. Whether the fetus can choose to be in that position is irrelevant as to whether the woman's rights are being violated.
Not so. The dispute was over the meaning of "person" in the Fourteenth amendment. The Fourteenth mentions "citizens" having "prividges and immunities" of the Constitution. It also defines citizens as born in America or naturalized. The fetus, flatly, does not qualify for full Constitutional protection. The passage also mentions "persons" to refer to those born outside America but within its jurisdictions. It is no stretch, and not outside the logical realm, to presume the birth requirement.
This is where your logic breaks down. Even giving the fetus complete and full Constitutional protection would not and should not allow it to live attached to the woman against the woman's will. You do not have this right. I do not have the right. You would be giving the fetus extra protection to require the woman to share her body in this way.
Oh? Why do I see "person at conception" everywhere then?
Not really, no. If a situation is presented, such as a burglar in your home, where you may justify killing, that ability may not be present outside of that situation. That you may kill in some situations does not imply that you may kill in all situations.
(A) could be a possibility, but (B) could only be if the daughter was still in the same situation that justified the killing (ie, be a fetus). Since the current situation does not justify that outcome, she could not require this.
What property was transferred? The fetus, as far as I know, isn't defined as property
Abortion does not try to redress the "stolen property" already taken, it prevents future burglary.
This is an error.
In a certain situation, yes. After birth that situation no longer exists.
I don't think it matters.

reply from: yoda

I'm quite sure I did not. I recall my statement being very different from a promise not to generalize, I agreed not to make one particular statement that you quoted, and that's all.

reply from: yoda

Now a fetus is reduced to the status of a burgular?
But really, EVEN A BURGULAR gets a trial!
Abortion is worse than a KANGAROO COURT!!

reply from: Sigma

I see. You claim to be 'an honest man', yet you try to justify insults with "I didn't technically agree" when it is clear you did indeed agree. This is not what an honest man would do.
I said: Then no broad generalizations such as "all pro-choice people care about is killing babies". That is personally insulting.
You agreed.
You said, in this thread: [Pro-choice people] are not open-minded researchers, they are closed-minded people with an axe to grind. And the[sic] will grasp at almost any straw, scientific or not, to justify killing babies.
However justified you believe your statement to be, you agreed not to use broad and insulting generalizations such as the example I provided. If you cannot help but do so, perhaps you should follow the saying: If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all.

reply from: Rights

"Pro-life people would not be content with certain States allowing abortion."
Absolutely right. I didn't say resolving the question at any one level would resolve the arguement. I just said it is the arguement. And many, if not most States, would pass laws making abortion a criminal act. Then it would be the Pro-Choicers turn. once again, to argue the laws. But how would they do so bereft of a definition of the fetus as somehow being less than a citizen? The laws of most States don't permit one citizen to take the life of another except for protection of life or property. And, in most sates even those killings are subject. at least. to proof of the threat. The argument would go on because both sides can not agree on the nature of that which is killed. And the issue of criminality depends on that definition.
It is only that definition that makes the debate. Your argument that a fetus does not have the right to share your body falls flat if you grant that the fetus has rights. You granted the right to share your body when you failed to abstain. You granted the right to share your body when you failed to employ contraceptives. You could not invite someone into your home and then shoot him as being an intruder. And if you allow the argument that the fetus has the same rights as a "born' person whom you invited in, your right to murder is cancelled
So the only argument you have is to say that the fetus has no rights. It is the entire argument.
"You would be giving the fetus extra protection to require the woman to share her body in this way."
The young are protected under the law in ways you and I are not. It is my right to buy you a drink in any place that is not "dry". But if you are underage, I am liable for prosecution for the same act.
"Oh? Why do I see "person at conception" everywhere then?"
You can easily trace a continuity from a fertilized egg to a newborn and back. There is no disconituity. But from the moment before conception to the moment after, there is a definite discontinuity. Before there are two entities, and neither of them will ever receive citizenship. After, there is only one entity, and if all goes well, it will someday vote. As you know, I don't necessarily espouse this as the criteria for granting rights. But those who do are correct in arguing that all the ingredients of an individual representative of mankind exist at that moment and not before. That cannot be argued for the moment before or after birth.
"Since the current situation does not justify that outcome, she could not require this. "
I say she could. It is a well established precedent of the property laws.
"What property was transferred? The fetus, as far as I know, isn't defined as property"
But it is an implied definition. By refusing to define the fetus as a "person", the Court has left definition up to customary usage. That which is under the custody and control of a person (and the fetus is definitely under the custody and control of the mother), and whose disposition resides legally in the hands of the custodian (and the court has said it cannot be illegal for the mother to dispose of the fetus) has always been defined as property. The courts would buy that definition in a minute (because they customarily do).
"Abortion does not try to redress the "stolen property" already taken, it prevents future burglary."
Every one of the fifty State Legislatures would love it if that were true. But the fact is that you have a right to sue. And if you can demonstrate to the satisfaction of the court that you were not handled in compliance with State statute, you will likely win. The hypothetical case is an absurdity, but it would cause a few legal fits. There is enough precedent in it to cause defense attorneys to scurry for the cover of the lack of an appropriate State Statute permitting the taking of a life under the circumstances. or perhaps they might cite a Statute of Limitations argument. The plaintiff might then argue that the State grant her immunity from prosecution for recovering the stolen goods herself. That would be followed by more legal hash. In the end of course, the daughter would not be killed but several new precedents would have been set.
As for recovering the cost of raising a child, I betcha that one would fly; although not to the extent of the State paying the full costs.'Twould be fun to watch.
"I don't think it matters."
Of course not. You are not really concerned with the Constitution or with what it says or doesn't say, or with what was or was not the intent. You have made that clear. If the Constitution made a claer and undeniable statement that it was not the right of a "person" to abort a fetus, your stance would not change at all
And I do understand that, if the shoe were on the other foot (and to a large extent Roes Vs Wade makes it so) Pro-Life would not change its stance. It occurs because the Court says it's Constitional. But the question of whether it should occur is a matter of individaul feelings about right and wrong.

reply from: yoda

The generalization I made in this thread was not one "such as" that one, it was a different sort of generalization. If you meant "no broad generalizations", period, then you should have said "no broad generalizations, period"! But you chose to put in a "such as" example, for whatever reasons.
Yes I did, and I stand by that statement.

reply from: pray4em

Exactly Rights,
Any DECENT and SENSIBLE person will recognize "evidence of life" and respect the unborn as persons. Persons with the "right to life"

reply from: Sigma

Rights,
Very easily. Even given all rights and protections of the Constitution, no adult has the right to live attached to another against the other's will. Unless the fetus is given greater protection than the Constitution affords, it may be justifiable to kill a person in that situation.
This, of course, is debatable. You an invite someone into your home and then have them forcably removed if they refused to leave. You may not be able to kill them (depending on the situation and the State), but you can have them removed. If the fetus has the same rights as a born person, you may be able to have them removed.
Not really, no. The decision is part of the debate, of course, but is not the whole. The legality is one aspect of the debate and whether the fetus is legally considered a person is one aspect of the legal debate, but it in no way comprises the whole.
My argument reaches beyond whether the fetus is considered a person.
In some ways. They also have fewer freedoms.
Few pro-life people would admit that disallowing abortion would provide the fetus with greater rights than the woman in question.
And to whom was it transferred?
And so you sue the State. I did not dispute this. I disputed that abortion is justified to redress stolen bodily resources. In your example you are trying to say that abortion the born would be justified to redress "stolen property" if the State prevented the woman from aborting. Since abortion is not justified for that reason, I fail to see the connection you are making.
That is untrue. I don't believe the intent was what you believe it is. I absolutely care what the Constitution says.
I don't think it matters whether they believed creation was birth or conception or somewhere in between. For our purposes, what matters is when rights are bestowed. For the vast majority, it is certain at birth. For the rest, it is reasonable to require birth.
If the Constitution specified that abortion is illegal I would not believe that portion to be in line with the general theme of the Constitution, much as I believe the inclusion of portions originally included to continue slavery were not in line with the general theme of freedom.
yodavater,
The example I provided was a generalization about pro-choice people in a negative light. You agreed not to post such generalizations.
Am I to understand that you intend to use whatever ambiguities you can find to wiggle out of the agreement not to insult one another? Why go through the farce of agreeing in the first place, then?

reply from: pray4em

WOW, your all heart sigma! What is it about killing another human being that makes some whole?

reply from: Sigma

I'm afraid I do not understand the question. "Makes some whole"?

reply from: yoda

And the one I posted was not "such" a generalization, it was a different kind.
Well just think about it Siggy, you've been justifying the slaughter of little innocent babies with every AMBIGUITY you can find......... so WHAT'S YOUR PROBLEM???

reply from: Sigma

It was an insulting generalization, which was something you agreed you would not do.
I see. Just to be clear, you intend to use whatever ambiguities you can find to wiggle out of the agreement not to insult one another?

reply from: yoda

YOUR interpretation of "the agreement" is illigimate and void. No such agreement was ever made.
And your coldness towards the lives of innocent babies belies your hypersensitivity to my so-called "insults". How can anyone be so thin-skinned while cold-heartedly justifying the slaughter of babies?
You uphold the practice of killing babies, and then complain because I point that out? Oh how cruel of me

reply from: tabithamarcotte

Where in the Constitution does it say that a person doesn't have the right to be attatched to another?

reply from: Sigma

I see. So what did you believe you were agreeing to?
You can point out that I justify abortion, and I do not complain about the "killing babies" nonsense because I agreed you could use that. Broad and insulting generalizations, as well as insulting rhetorical questions and sarcastic remarks were prohibited.
If you did not wish to stop insulting others, why agree to stop insulting others? I have not insulted you, so you cannot use that as justification

reply from: Sigma

A right to bodily integrity is considered to exist and be covered by the Constitution. We do not have a right to violate other's rights.

reply from: tabithamarcotte

Now where is the "right to bodily integrity" mentioned? I've never seen it. If a right is not in the Constitution, it doesn't exist! All the rights we need are in there.

reply from: Sigma

This is debatable, but the Ninth and Tenth Amendments allow for the protection of rights not mentioned in the Constitution.

reply from: tabithamarcotte

What, the right not to be raped, be robbbed? Those were obvious rights that society had always had. If the founders thought abortion and "bodily autonomy" was important enough, then they would have put rights in there.

reply from: pray4em

I'm afraid I do not understand the question. "Makes some whole"?
Make someone whole like; fulfilled, satisfied or complete. Why would anyone think that killing another human being would make there life better. Killing is a cold hearted action, considered by the DECENT and SENSIBLE to be the worst of crimes against humanity.
"attached against there will"? Again, what about the baby, how did they get there against the mothers will?

reply from: pray4em

Airline pilot at ten thousand feet comes on the radio and says "Would passenger thirty four please step outside of the aircraft, there seems to be a hole in the manifest and you slipped on board by mistake, oh and have a nice day!"

reply from: yoda

Yep. And as passenger 34 steps up to the door, the pilot says "you got on here by accident, so I have the moral right to put you off any time I wish to".

reply from: yoda

Oh, I LOVE that question!

reply from: Sigma

Such things generally fall under State law, but it can conceivably be covered by the "liberty" guarantee of the Constitution.
They did not need to. We have these rights. They can be limited if they affect other's rights, otherwise the States are not justified in infringing upon them.

reply from: Sigma

Why do you believe abortion does this? Relieved may be a charge correctly levelled, but I doubt many if any would feel this at having an abortion.
Ah. A pacifist?
Long story short, it implanted in her uterus.

reply from: yoda

Ah. A pacifist?
THAT's it? THAT's your response??? ARE you a computer program?

reply from: NalaP

"Long story short, it implanted in her uterus."
That answer would only apply to rape victims who become pregnant.
Saying that "it" implanted in her uterus against her will is just like saying the calcium from the milk I drank today absorbed through my intestinal tract against my will, or the alcohol I consumed destructed my liver and impaired my cognition against my will. Certain actions have obvious consequences. If you choose to take a risk, that is your choice. But to then say the outcome happened against your will? That is obviously not true.

reply from: Rights

Sigma:
A couple of busy days. But I think I have caught up on all the posts. Just thought I'd like to say a word about this one:
"Even given all rights and protections of the Constitution, no adult has the right to live attached to another against the other's will."
Time for another hypothetical. I'll make this one short.
Siamese twins.............Martha & Mary. Both have brains, hearts, digestive tracts.
But that is all Martha has. Mary has a complete set of organs. Surgically separated, Martha will die. So, as I understand you to say, Mary has a right to demand surgical separation?

reply from: yoda

I can and will point out whatever I wish.
And if you think that killing babies is "nonsense", why DO YOU support it?

reply from: Rights

Sigma:
One more issue on which we have never touched is the question as to exactly when our rights must be granted. We have a right to bear arms. Still, If I wish to carry a handgun, I usually have to be licensed. Most licensing processes require a waiting period. Is that unconstitutional?
If you feel that it is, I will understand. On the other hand, if you do not think it unconstitutional, would you agree to having women apply for the right to have that which is attached to them removed? And to have that application approved after a suitable waiting period.............say nine months?
My point is that your issue really is not a matter of having that which is attached to you removed. That issue is automatically resolved in nine months. So the issue really is a matter of how quickly you can legally have it resolved. I think Pro Lifers would roundly support you if you weren't in such a hurry.
I know I would. Be willing to wait nine months; and if that which is attached remains so, you would have my entire support of your right to remove it.

reply from: Sigma

Rights,
To even ask that question reveals a fundamental misunderstanding of my argument.
To answer your hypothetical, we would have to determine a couple of things. In the case of siamese twins, which was born with the body in question and thus has a claim to its use?
Short answer: no. Long answer: no, but there is debate on whether or not it could be under the Fourteenth Amendment.
This case cannot be made under the same logic that a waiting period for firearms is made. The Second Amendment was not Incorporated against the States, which is why no Constitutional issue is made.
Your semantics argument nonewithstanding, it continues to be a matter of choice of having what is attached to you removed. Whether it resolves itself in nine months is irrelevant to this, since you would be taking the choice of whether to continue the pregnancy out of the hands of the woman.
yodavater,
If you cannot be bound by your agreement not to insult others, then there is nothing further we need to discuss. Good day to you.

reply from: yoda

There never was anything we "needed" to discuss, and certainly not your lying interpretation of our "agreement".
Just keep up the drumbeat of your probabykilling lies, and I'll keep pointing them out. Your response is optional, as always.


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