Off The Couch And Into The Fire

Those cognoscenti of blogdom, SC&A, have decided to adjudicate on the topic of Abortion. Unfortunately mistaking the arbitration of taste for the serious business of discussing ethics.

In the effort to “tick off” people’s thinking on the issue, an essay was written which began, “We are of course, always in the right as our positions are unimpeachable and exquisitely well reasoned.” Well, belly up to the bar, boys, because debate in the ethics arena is going to demand more support and logic than that brave statement proffers.

Let’s see what’s on the table so far.

“Not happy with legal abortion? Too bad. Until you come up with volunteers to raise children put up for adoption by millions of women who will be unable to have abortions, well, your voice is irrelevant.”

Like abortion has eradicated the problems of how some children are raised?

“your voice is irrelevant”-“your voices don’t mean a thing” when discussing the rights of unborn children and the way abortion impacts women, and what the real issues are in the larger picture of teenage pregnancy or unwanted pregnancy or the difficulties of parenting? irrelevant? Because, why? Because you say so?

So far the reasoning leaves me unimpressed. Is there a clear correlation between abortion rights and better parenting? Is there a correlation with the fact that there are lots of people who want to adopt and no children for them? Or does volunteering to raise those children stop the flow of problems – of which a pregnancy is only one factor? And what about the fact that an abortion is not always a lasting solution?
Any ideas on that? Then maybe I will consider that my voice would be irrelevant.

But probably not, because the two sides of the equation aren’t remotely related. If it were, there wouldn’t be so much emphasis further on into the essay on personal responsibility. And in the spirit of that thought, sex education is addressed which is just a red herring in the abortion argument. Abortion is not acceptable as ongoing contraception -any responsible doctor will tell you that.

We are told: “Don’t bitch when you get hit by a car, and don’t expect the government to defend your stupidity.” oh. yeah. Like all pregnancy is so predictable. Like all contraception works 100%.

Like every woman in tough circumstances is stupid.

Not every car wreck results from going against the light.

“here’s the deal” So SC&A want to broker a deal.

“Keep abortion legal. There are a few circumstances for which the procedure is necessary. A few. By all means, let’s keep the option available. Let us not, however, provide abortion on demand, as a form of contraception.”

Um. wait…wasn’t that the case BEFORE Roe vs. Wade? Wasn’t abortion performed for those cases where there were a few outlined circumstances?
And are the Abortion Rights proponents going to accede to that? Isn’t that exactly what they don’t want? And isn’t abortion on demand exactly what they want to “keep”? Like the ‘legal abortions’ of today? So what’s your deal, guys? That those who have ethical concerns for unborn human beings just put up and shut up and go away?

Isn’t that a bit patronizing and downright unreasonable?

But then where does SC&A go with all this? I am not sure. It founders in some economic nowhereland somewhere. Like dollars and cents hold the key to the reality of our ethical convictions. Not all decisions get lined up on the spreadsheets of taxes and income. Otherwise, we could most likely get by on our ethical conundrums far more easily than we seem able to. Throw some money at the problem? Solved! Oh, wait, we keep trying to do that, and it hasn’t worked very well.

All this because of the tinyness of the premature baby in the news. Well, that tiny baby did show something. She showed the humanity of the fetus that normally doesn’t get born into the big cruel world at that stage. Yet, she was born and she did survive and the prognosis is “good”.

It’s good for that little person to grow up and perhaps become what we recognize as someone worthwhile, possibly happy.

And that might just be why that article on abortion and the various protests within it was inspired. Because there is something highly disturbing about seeing that cute helpless little baby and intellectually know that your insistance that we keep the present ‘legal’ abortion policies intact is going to result in the end of many like her. The ones who would’ve made it to full term, but were deemed dispensible, whose mothers were encouraged to deem them dispensible.

That’s what is at the bottom of it, I believe, not the economic “bottom line”. The ethical questions that we need to revisit.

And that is where -I have said it repeatedly- the greatest enmity to the Abortion Rights cause will come: from the amazing leaps of science and research. People have an inner repugnance of killing their own young, normally, when they can plainly see it. And this is what I think is behind the great turnaround in the political camp rhetoric of the Pro-Abortion advocates. They know they are on a sinkhole of public opinion, especially as there are more Human Interest and Science stories on the fetus formerly known as “tissue”. It is simply an adjustment of the angle: promote the idea that we are ideologically against the killing of unborn infants, say that we just want better contraception ( as if that were all the problem) and keep the killing going. The abortion industry is happy, the political proponents get to look good, the status quo is preserved and everybody is happy. The Salon article called this “repositioning”.


Except for all those unanswered issues of abortion: the babies, the woman’s health, the right and wrong of society.

Except for those things.

The answer given is that women have to be “responsible”. Well, what if they are not?
What then?

What if your utopia of every woman who has sex is “responsible” doesn’t happen? Who is going to make what happen? The Salon article raised the spectre of the policies of China and Romania. Well, guess what? these were Totalitarian societies. They provided the force to ensure their elitest ideas of “responsible”. America doesn’t go that way… we go the way of freedom to choose for ourselves, even to choose being stupid on occasion. And most of our family policies that protect our freedom will be truly voluntary. *see note below*

That means people, being what they are, will often not be idealistically staying out of trouble. Back to square one with “unwanted” pregnancies and economic consequences.

So, guys, here’s my deal: the matter is one of morality in society. Raising the bar, that produces the responsibility, that makes progress, that eradicates the problem. -Over time- and dealing with the consequences with good information and compassion along the way. It’s hard, it’s slow, and it costs us, but if we value freedom it is the only way we are going to go.

And the “quick solution” of abortion has never been easy, quick, or a solution.

Time to face up.

*( Please don’t try to hijack the concept of an adult choosing for themselves with that of choosing to end anothers life)*

4 thoughts on “Off The Couch And Into The Fire”

  1. Your piece is well written and thoughtful- and still leaves one minor detail out.

    From a religious standpoint, we are endowed with free will. All of us and each of us. That is, you don’t necessarily get to decide what I choose to do. You may not like that, but God, in His infinite wisdom, gave that free choice to all of us. You don’t get to take away free will.

    So while you preach what in effect, will be a choice, no matter how sharply written, is just that- preaching. It will remain a choice for many women.

    My position is simple. There are too many abortions. We need to address that.

    You may want to force the issue down some throats. In reality, that tactic has failed and is going nowhere.

    Please understand, I’m no fan of abortion. Unlike you, however I am a realist. Lets build a foundation before you start the interior decoration.

    I will pick this tomorrow, again.

  2. Thanks for stopping by- I appreciate your time.
    First off I have to say I am not forcing anything down anyones throat, I merely dissected your essay.

    I didn’t write from a strictly religious view, and I included free will, maybe more than your piece did. I am not preaching, but reasoning and there is a difference. I think I can support my stance, but can you support yours? You had more of a position that we keep the status quo on abortion, than reduce them. You submitted prevention, but if prevention was all the answer we wouldn’t have the abortion question at all.
    Both free will and freedom to exercise it are part of the situation.
    I think it is time to look again at the pro-abortion platform- what it says and what its results are.

    I know you say you no fan of abortion, but your essay defends the present policy. That is supporting abortion upon demand as it is now practiced. I am questioning in this post how much of a realist you actually are- and if we go deeply enough into the topic I think my realism, my respect for secular requirements, etc will be evidenced.

    Again, though my religious views color my opinions, I am not arguing from a theological position here.
    That’s a straw man in the discussion.

    I look forward to your next segment.

  3. I discovered you through our mutual blogging friend Greg, Mr. “What Attitude Problem.” I’m enjoying your blog — always thought provoking.

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