Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Abortion Slacktivism And The White Savior Complex

The documentary film After Tiller is a fascinating look at the abortion industry, but it's also a fascinating piece of propaganda. It delves into the issue of late term abortions, a topic too grisly for most people to consider. 

The film focuses on a few of the few - the tiny percentage of abortionists who will do the procedure all the way into the third trimester of pregnancy. Only four doctors to be exact.




Dr. Hern is one of them. Most days he commits late term abortions in Boulder, Colorado. However, when reminiscing about how he got his start in After Tiller, he talks about his peace corp days in Brazil... 


What most people will conveniently overlook as he pulls at our heartstrings, is that he was looking at this community through a lucky set of eyes. A very lucky set of eyes. He chose to go to this impoverished country. He was not born there and forced to live there, like these women do day in and day out. He chose to tend to these underprivileged children for a set amount of time. He was not forced to conceive and care for them his entire life like the women of this village who he claims he was simply attempting to help. He chose to offer "safer" abortions as the "solution" to these women's problems, because he doesn't have to live with the fallout of the many more unplanned pregnancies and subsequent terminations that will continue to plague these mothers, sisters, and daughters since the real problem was never actually addressed at all. Meanwhile, he has flown back to the comforts of his American life and now uses their circumstances to justify his living extinguishing other human lives.

The pregnancies are only a symptom of - and abortion merely a BandAid for - the real problem: that women in many communities the world over live in a deeply patriarchal society where they have zero power, autonomy, freedom, or opportunity. We hear phrases like "baby machines" bandied about in the U.S., but here it might actually apply. Most of these women are going to grow up, be impregnated, and bear child after child, and there is nothing they can do about it.

Reproductive rights mean nothing if you ignore the fact that these women have no control over whether or not they will reproduce in the first place. And rather than addressing the true oppression these women are facing, Dr. Hern simply offers them an abortion after their rights have already been sufficiently trampled on. 

That is lazy activism from a privileged man who wants to pat himself on the back when really he's only compounding the problem.

I wish this were a unique story, but unfortunately this is how the west tends to treat most people not lucky enough to be born here in America (and of course those unlucky ones here who had the audacity to be born poor). Here's some pills, if they don't work, we'll kill your children for you. It's not that we don't care, it's just that we think these sorry excuses for "help" are the answer, when the real answer is to encourage economic health and self-sufficiency. "Give a man a fish..." We all know the saying.

Meanwhile, when we discuss abortion, we often hear the argument "But what about a woman's choice?" The response is pretty simple: "We are all for a woman's choice, but by the time there is an innocent human life inside her, the choice has already been made."

But what about the truly poor women of the third world, who don't get to choose whether or not they get pregnant, or raped by their husbands for that matter? Can your magical Western pills stop that from happening? I didn't think so...

It's difficult to see clips of a poor Brazilian woman, sitting outside a hut, no running water, no electricity, only the food she can grow or kill, with seven children playing around her in the dirt, and no say whatsoever in whether or not she has more. The ones she has are already hungry. Who on earth would say it's a good idea for her to keep having child after child she can't feed?

To the slacktivists, the answer is, of course, is birth control and abortion: send a (probably male) doctor over there to pat her on the head and scramble her baby up in her womb and suck it out and dispose of it and send her back to her life with a few hormone altering packets of class 1 carcinogens, where she will continue to have no power or control or real choice. Then if she gets pregnant again, and he'll go suck her next baby out, and so on and so forth. She'll still be poor and helpless, and he'll be a savior... to some. But certainly not to her. 

That is a sorry excuse for a solution. 

The answer, of course, is to advocate globally for women's rights, and for economic opportunity, which is the only way women will be able to access those rights. A world in which every girl can decide for herself what kind of life she's going to have; every woman can choose to marry or not marry, be a mom or not be a mom; every woman can wake up in the morning and have power and autonomy over her own body and her own life, from the moment it first exists.

Maybe it's just a dream, but that's the kind of world we are working toward.

These "saviors" in After Tiller do nothing but perpetuate the victimhood of women. They don't actually solve any problems. They just help keep a repulsive system running by propping up a patriarchy that preys on poor women.

After Tiller is absorbing, fascinating, and seductive. But it's propaganda. Don't let it fool you. Women - all women, everywhere - deserve much better than the desperate, wounding abomination of abortion. They deserve true liberation. 











- Post by Destiny & Kristen

37 comments:

  1. Exactly! I hope someday the eyes of those who are blind to all of this are finally able to see. Thank you for sharing, keep spreading this message!

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  2. Good job! Keep on telling it like it is. I'm grateful.

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  3. Yes, thank you. White male here; we are not your saviors.

    These people and their victims are deserving of pity. Different sorts of pity, tho'.

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  4. And before people think these are rate cases because late-term abortion accounts for 1% of all abortions... In real numbers that adds up to 12,000 a year (US). 1,000 deaths higher than the annual gun-related homicides that permeate every news outlet and political commentary.

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  5. White man savior complex? Lol oh, the irony. The entire Pro Life movement is comprised of mostly whites and even more predominantly, white men. In fact, the majority of the New Wave Feminists are middle-upper class and white who will never be affected by the criminalization of abortion, if that time came again, because they will have the means to fly out of the country to procure an abortion with impunity if any of them change their minds.

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    Replies
    1. Oh how I'd love to be this middle-upper class person you speak of. :)

      That said, you're right. The PLM is mostly white and that really freakin' sucks. It's something that I think about often. Abortion impacts women of color disproportionately more than it does us, yet where are they in this discussion? Nowhere to be found. On either side really.

      What's the solution?

      Delete
    2. Then you aren't paying attention. There are lots in the Pro Choice movement.

      I can tell you one thing that doesn't bode well for you: the way Pro Lifers view black women. I am regularly on the NPLA (National Pro Life Alliance) Facebook page. There are a handful of Pro Choice women who are black that are also regularly on the page with me, and I can tell you,I have never seen such FLAGRANT racism directed towards people in all of my life. That is the kind of thing I only see on the news or in a movie, but to see people in action? It's jaw-dropping. I've seen them called "nig," "porch monkey," "blackie," but most of all, they LOVE pointing out the fact blacks have a higher rate of abortions the moment a woman of color makes a comment. Do they ever mention to the white Pro Choice Christian women commenting that white Christian women have the most total abortions of all? Ha. No. Never.

      Abortion doesn't impact black people more so than other groups. They have a disproportionately higher rate of abortions than other groups, that part is true. They also have a higher birth rate than any other group.

      Why do YOU suppose that is?

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    3. Humanist wrote: "The entire Pro Life movement is comprised of mostly whites and even more predominantly, white men."

      What is your source for the statistic about white men?

      "the majority of the New Wave Feminists are middle-upper class and white who will never be affected by the criminalization of abortion, if that time came again, because they will have the means to fly out of the country to procure an abortion with impunity if any of them change their minds."

      From what I've seen, New Wave Feminists supports the criminalization of abortion in other countries. New Wave Feminists, would you like to weigh in on this?

      Delete
    4. I'm calling BS that PLM is all white men. It's predominately young people and overwhelmingly female.

      I also don't believe that the prochoice side is made up of such wonderful diversity as you claim because I've seen just the opposite with my own eyes. PP is good at putting women of color in the spotlight during ad campaigns, but that's hardly the case at their demonstrations and fundraisers. It's old white women.... and then the Lena Dunham fan club.

      I've asked my black friends why this is and the overwhelming response I've gotten is that abortion is a necessary evil that no one talks about. Not within their families and certainly not publicly. That's why we have amazing groups (run by people of color) working to address the issue within their communities.

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    5. Also, our goal has never been criminization. That won't stop abortion. We want it to become unthinkable because it's unnecessary. Globally.

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    6. Destiny wrote: "our goal has never been criminalization."

      Oh, sorry. What I remember specifically right now is these lines, which I took as support for laws protecting the unborn:

      http://newwavefeminists.blogspot.in/2013/07/an-open-letter-to-radical-pro-choice.html

      "Let me see if I can explain it another way… If I saw you holding up a sign, oh let’s say in the mid-1800’s reading, “My Plantation, My Choice!” or 'Keep The Government Out Of My Slave Trade Practices!' I would say, 'Hey Paula Deen, uh-no.' Because see, we’d be talking about another human being
      . . .
      your uterus ain’t nobodies business but your own, that is, until it’s used as a place to perpetrate injustice against the human race, then yeah, I’m gonna be up in your business, sorry."

      Isn't a goal of the March for Life to overturn Roe v. Wade?

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    7. It's not that I've changed my view, but I no longer believe laws alone will do the trick. Passing HB 2 here in Texas closed a lot of clinics and subsequently stopped women from getting abortions, but that doesn't address the root problem either.

      Why did they feel like they needed abortion in the first place? Let's address that. It's the mindset that has to change. It's another human being that you are killing for convenience. We have to make even the thought of doing that unthinkable because our culture must understand the intrinsic dignity of every human being from the moment they first exist. Once that happens so much will change in the world.

      Slavery is illegal but it still exists in the shadows. Why? Again, because people do not recognize the intrinsic dignity of every human being. Laws alone can't make them, it has to be a heart change, a mind change, and a culture change.

      Delete
    8. According to recent Gallup polls, and Pew Research, the majority of women identify as Pro Choice, 54%. That I can confirm. As well as most post college graduates are pro choice. I'll have to research the rest.

      Oh, like the Pro Life movement doesn't try to put blacks in the spotlight? What a laugh. I see them try to do it all of the time.

      I was asking why you believe blacks have a higher abortion AND birthrate since the Pro Life movement targets this ethnic group the most as some kind of proof that there is a Pro Choice agenda to harm women of color and rid the community of blacks.

      Why doesn't the Pro Life movement surmise whites are the target group of the Pro Choice movement to "eliminate" when whites have lower birthrates than minority groups?

      The Pro Life movement wants abortion to be considered murder. Murder is a crime. Our punishment for murder, in this country, can be as severe as death.

      To say the Pro Life movement doesn't want women/mothers, along with abortion providers, to be sent to prison for having and providing abortions is pure naivety. I have no idea why Pro Life women believe it will be good for women and children for mothers to be sent to prison for having an abortion leaving their children orphaned to a system with an exponentially higher rate of child suicide, sexual, physical and emotional abuse.

      But, I digress, am very curious as to your interpretation of the higher birthrates among blacks than whites and how this fits in with the Pro Life theory that the Pro Choice movement is targeting blacks in an effort to "eliminate" them from society through reproductive rights? Why aren't Pro Life groups examining white birthrates and surmising there is a Pro Choice racist plot against whites not to reproduce as their birthrates are lower than blacks and other minority groups?

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    9. HB 2 closed clinics, but Texans are still having abortions by crossing state lines, using DIY techniques and passing around Cytotec on college campuses.

      As long as comprehensive sex education and contraceptive availability as well as price points stay the same, the abortion rates will stay the same. They will just be more difficult to keep track of because they won't be accessing clinics keeping track of abortions in the state or they will cross state lines to have them.

      Delete
    10. *birth rate. Not birthrate
      *naïveté

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    11. Destiny, thanks for your clarification about criminalization. If I understand correctly, you do support laws to protect the unborn, but you observe that they will not bring about the heart change that will be more effective (and will be effective not only in saving the unborn): "people do not recognize the intrinsic dignity of every human being. Laws alone can't make them, it has to be a heart change, a mind change, and a culture change." "Once that happens so much will change in the world."

      I completely agree that laws alone can't create the heart change, but I think they have a necessary role in creating the heart change. How? Part of creating the heart change is to voice strenuously our own conviction about the intrinsic dignity of unborn human beings. When some in society are weak and defenseless, liable to be harmed or exploited by others, and society recognizes their intrinsic dignity, society responds by protecting them with laws. It seems to me that if in one case alone, the case of the unborn, we claimed that they had intrinsic dignity but did not demand that they be protected by law, our claim that they have intrinsic dignity would not be convincing.

      "Once that happens so much will change in the world."

      Yes! I'd like to invite you to check out something I wrote on that topic for Life Matters Journal, "What's in It for the Born?" -- http://www.NoTerminationWithoutRepresentation.org/whats-in-it-for-the-born/

      Humanist may doubt that laws even save any lives at all. Humanist, on the NWF Facebook page you can check out a recent Cosmopolitan tweet dourly admitting that they do:

      https://www.facebook.com/NewWaveFeminists/photos/a.342873355734792.79667.202144953140967/1097259826962804/?type=3

      Moreover, I once wrote up some of the evidence here (that laws save unborn lives):

      http://blog.secularprolife.org/2015/06/insight-into-american-moral-compass.html#comment-2107135107

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    12. @Acyutananda, when children, teens and women don’t want children, they will not have them.

      While Cosmo may be fun for advice like “5 Best Bras to Make Him Swoon”, I don't consider it a reliable source for this topic. I trust hard data.

      Did you know the crude birth rates for Ireland and the US were neck and neck from 2000 – 2008 at ~14 births/1000? How could this be when abortion is illegal in Ireland and they use contraceptives LESS than Americans?

      (http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/one-third-of-irish-women-do-not-use-contraception-259139.html)

      But that’s not all. Poland and Malta have some of the lowest birth rates in all of Europe at 10 births/1000. How could this be when in 1991 Poland stopped funding contraceptives and 62% of Maltese don’t use contraceptives? Are they better at using natural methods than the rest of humanity?

      Crude birth rates for 2015:

      Ireland 15
      United States 13
      United Kingdom 13
      Canada 11
      Poland 10
      Malta 10

      http://www.indexmundi.com/g/g.aspx?v=25&c=ei&c=mt&c=pl&c=us&l=en

      http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SP.DYN.CBRT.IN

      https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2054rank.html

      LATIN AMERICA
      What’s happening in parts of Europe is not a fluke. “In 1960, women in Latin America had almost six children on average. By 2010, the rate had fallen to 2.3 children.” This despite the fact Latin America has some of the most restrictive abortion laws in the world and abysmally poor reproductive health and family planning policies.
      Above all,“Brazil’s declining fertility rate has been particularly fascinating for demographers… the country’s fertility rate has fallen from 6.15 children per woman in 1960 to less than 1.9 today.”

      Why?

      “Women were empowered by a pro-democracy movement that rose up against a 1970s-era military dictatorship…women began to look for means of birth control, easily obtained without a prescription. Doctors in the public health service provided sterilizations, which became common, and women sought out pills that induced abortions long before those pills became the subject of controversy in the United States.”

      “Women nowadays, they understand that they have to change their lives. This idea of doing what she really wants to do, and having the power to do it, is the thing that has changed this country.”

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/fertility-rate-plummets-in-brazil/2011/12/23/gIQAsOXWPP_story.htmlIn

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    13. ISRAEL
      In Israel abortions are funded by the government and 98% of women who apply for an abortion are approved. Do these liberal policies make Israelis so hyper-abortion they’re gifting the applications at bat mitzvahs? No. Their crude birth rates are consistently high at around 19/1,000.

      Why is their birth rate so high? The answer can be found in the government’s pro-natalist approach to their national health care policies. State funded pre-natal and post-natal care as well as government funding in a wide range of contraceptives. Furthermore, “if you become pregnant and give birth while working in Israel you are entitled to a maternity leave and several benefits…” As a result, less Israeli women experience unwanted pregnancies.

      http://www.loc.gov/law/help/il-reproduction-and-abortion/israel.php

      Guess which group supports pro natalist policies in the US? The Pro Choice movement.

      NEPAL
      Due to unsafe abortion's significant contribution to maternal mortality and morbidity, in 2002 Nepal legalized abortion then introduced and scaled up safe abortion services in a remarkably short time frame. Did this suddenly make women desire abortions more? Was there a sudden drop in the year or so after abortion was legalized? No. They continued and still continue to have a very high birth rate.

      http://reproductive-health-journal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1742-4755-9-7

      This is just for starters. I haven’t even included extensive research the world over regarding the ineffective ability laws on abortion have in changing the hearts and minds of a society or a culture using abortion as a means of birth control.

      There is zero question in my mind or in the minds of researchers who have dedicated their entire lives to the study of abortion and maternity, including but not limited to, the analysis of systemic factors that drive women to abort and what drives them to have children. Banning abortion does not decrease abortion rates. It doesn't make women view abortion as immoral. The major factors affecting abortion rates are: 1.) comprehensive sex education, 2.) free (federal or privately funded), easily accessible contraceptives (particularly IUDs/Norplant), 3.) Pro-natalist governmental policies, 4.) Improved socioeconomics, 5.) Religion 6.) Modernization and the liberation of women


      The Pro Choice movement in the US has the greatest pulse on what drives American women to have abortions and what policies need to be implemented to minimize abortion rates. The Pro Life movement has the greatest pulse on how to use the law to punish women and providers for having and providing abortions.

      “Abortion rates around the world generally reflect the religious and political power in the country, the cultural values, and the availability of contraception.” – Encyclopedia.com

      Other sources used:
      The World Health Organization
      The United Nations Health Commission
      The United Nations Human Rights Council
      The Guttmacher Institute
      Amnesty International
      Human Rights Watch
      American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology
      The Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynecology

      To name a few.

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    14. Humanist, thanks for all the information. I will look into it and think about it. It all seems to apply pretty obliquely to the question, Do unborn child-protection laws save lives?, but anyway, I will look into it and think about it.

      Now let's suppose your data, though oblique, do show that there are a lot of abortions in places where abortion is illegal. I wasn't denying that. I had framed the question as whether unborn child-protection laws "save any lives at all."

      There are a number of specific points of yours that I should reply to, but better to go a little at a time. Two points for now:

      1. "While Cosmo may be fun. . . . I trust hard data."

      That's why I provided the second link, which is to formal studies with evidence that unborn child-protection laws save lives. Did you check it out? What did you think about the "Turnaway Study," for example?

      2. "Latin America has . . . abysmally poor . . . family planning policies. Above all,'Brazil’s declining fertility rate . . .' . 'Doctors in the public health service provided sterilizations, which became common'"

      Aren't you contradicting yourself here?

      "@Acyutananda, when children, teens and women don’t want children, they will not have them."

      Pregnant children are not a very big demographic group, but since you mention them, later I will tell you about a recent case in Paraguay.

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    15. How is that a contradiction? The health care system is not worse in those countries now than when children, teens and women were having 6 children as opposed to less than 2?

      Not exactly sure what you are getting at.

      It doesn't matter how small or large the number is of children who get pregnant.

      It is so odd to me when even in the comments section of this blog Pro Lifers will belabor the 1% of abortions that occur late term (as "still a lot" and the majority of those are because the fetus will endure an immense amount of suffering or death at birth. But, when a Pro Choice mentions ectopic pregnancies, pregnancies conceived from rape or incest, or mention children becoming pregnant, it's suddenly "Oh, that number is so small."

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    16. @Acyutananda

      I am highly doubtful the "closing Planned Parenthoods" has to do with an increase in birth rates. Are more impoverished women experiencing unwanted pregnancies without access to birth control? Perhaps. Will they start figuring out ways to either prevent pregnancies another way or have unsafe abortions, not performed in clinics, and not as easy to keep track of? There's no question in my mind. It's already starting to happen. Women are inducing their own abortions and in time they will become proficient and pass this knowledge off to other women.

      http://www.cbsnews.com/news/100000-texas-women-have-tried-to-self-induce-abortion/

      Texas experienced its highest birth rate in 2007. How could that be with Planned Parenthoods around? In fact, in 2007, Texas experienced the highest birth rates since 1970.

      "Live births in Texas totaled 399,451 in 2014, returning the state almost to its highest fertility, although last year’s tally is only provisional. If the number holds up, Texas won’t be far from its 2007 peak of 407,453 births statewide, the most since at least 1970.

      Officials at Parkland Memorial Hospital have reported a rapid decline in births since 2007, when the county facility was one of the nation’s busiest birthing centers. Parkland births peaked at 16,500 eight years ago but fell to about 10,200 in 2014.

      “When the economy goes, the birth rate dips,” Dr. Brian Casey, the hospital’s chief of obstetrics, said in a recent interview."


      http://www.dallasnews.com/news/metro/20150616-texas-fertility-rate-bounced-back-earlier-than-nations.ece


      Delete
    17. "How is that a contradiction? The health care system is not worse in those countries now than when children, teens and women were having 6 children as opposed to less than 2?

      "Not exactly sure what you are getting at."

      And I in turn am not sure what your 2nd sentence here is getting at. Are you asking me whether "The health care system is not worse in those countries now than when children, teens and women were having 6 children as opposed to less than 2" is what I'm getting at?

      One source of confusion is that my remark about a contradiction was in reply to a post of yours that did not mention health care as such, which you mention here. It mentioned REPRODUCTIVE health policies, which means abortion, contraception and sterilization policies. Health care as such tends to increase population. Euphemistically-named reproductive health policies tend to decrease a certain population.

      Please clarify what you mean.

      "It doesn't matter how small or large the number is of children who get pregnant."

      From your next paragraph --

      "It is so odd to me when even in the comments section of this blog Pro Lifers will belabor . . . as 'still a lot'. But, when a Pro Choice mentions . . . it's suddenly 'Oh, that number is so small'"

      -- it's clear that the first one means "whether the number of children who get pregnant is small or large doesn't change the moral seriousness of the hardship on them." But my "Pregnant children are not a very big demographic group" was not morality-related. It was related to your argument that low nationwide birth rates where abortion is against the law show the ineffectiveness of the laws. I meant that the number of children birthed or not birthed by children is not going to have a very big effect on the nationwide birth rate.

      I'll have to reply to your other recent post some time later. I haven't finished yet with the earlier set of posts.

      "Guess which group supports pro natalist policies in the US? The Pro Choice movement."

      I applaud anyone who supports pro-natalist policies, but is your point in relation to anything we had been discussing, or are you trying to make some new point?

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    18. @Acyutananda, no policies changed throughout Latin America as a whole particularly in Brazil. The fertility rate has been dropping at significant rates over the past 50 years. Reproductive health care didnt suddenly get better or worse NOR did Brazil liberalize reproductive health care policies or become Pro Choice (these a Catholic countries) which is why the sudden and drastic decrease in fertility rates had researchers and demographers stumped.

      ATTITUDES changed, not the law or "reproductive health care." Women started CHOOSING to having smaller families (2 or less children rather than 6).

      The WOMEN themselves decided they weren't going to have more children as they recognizing there is a life outside of breeding, quality of life matters, and they have the ability to control their lives and destinies through their reproductive choices IRRESPECTIVE of the law OR availability to those reproductive choices.

      Actually, reproductive choice and health care is life sustaining. That's why it IS health care. Family planning reduces early mortality rates significantly and improves the quality of life in society which is far more important than just birthing at high rates.

      Did Comstock Laws and illegal abortion stop women from accessing contraceptives by other means or controlling their fertility through contraceptives and abortion in THIS country? No and these laws are not working in Latin America either.

      Don't know how I can make it more clear. Perhaps try reading the article I posted? Here are several others: see links below


      If you applaud pro natalist policies then why are so many Pro Lifers against them? Most Pro Lifers don't want to pay for (through their taxes) prenatal, postnatal care or maternity leave. They also do not want to pay for contraceptives which prevents unwanted pregnancies and abortions.

      The point about children becoming pregnant is moot. Do children become pregnant? Yes they do. I never initiated an argument about the number of children becoming pregnant nor did I suggest it was a huge number or that it impacts abortion/pregnancy rates on a large scale. Children, teens and women become pregnant in this country. That is a truism. An irrefutable fact. It doesn't matter if only ONE child or 1 million children get pregnant. They should have a choice in whether or not they want to carry to term especially when a child's mortality rate increases more so than other age groups when they carry to term that young.


      https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/fertility-rate-plummets-in-brazil/2011/12/23/gIQAsOXWPP_story.html

      http://www.npr.org/2012/01/15/145133220/brazils-falling-birth-rate-a-new-way-of-thinking

      http://www.theguardian.com/money/2014/dec/10/why-arent-there-more-babies-us-fertility-rate-declines-economists-baffled

      http://www.economist.com/news/americas/21578710-traditional-demographic-patterns-are-changing-astonishingly-fast-autumn-patriarchs

      Delete
    19. Reply to Humanist's February 16, 2016 at 8:40 AM post
      installment 1/2

      First some questions on earlier posts of yours (if you reply, please make it clear which reply is to which question -- I will number the questions to make that easier):

      1.
      > In Israel abortions are funded by the government and 98% of women who apply for an abortion are approved.

      Do you mean that they require approval to get an abortion, or that they require approval to get funding?

      2.
      > Banning abortion does not decrease abortion rates.

      As far as I have understood so far, the studies you have been citing have shown correlations; they have not proved or disproved causality. For example, if some country has restrictive abortion laws and a low birth rate, that combination may be counter-intuitive, but it doesn't prove that the laws don't lower the abortion rates. The laws might be lowering the abortion rates -- thus raising the birth rate -- while some offsetting factor that hasn't been mentioned (such as good contraception) lowers the birth rate. Therefore, though many abortions have been deterred and lives saved by the laws, you won't notice that merely by looking at the birth rate.

      Yet "Banning abortion does not decrease abortion rates" is a causal claim, not just a correlation claim. You are claiming proof that there has been no law-abortion rate causality. Does any of those studies provide such proof, or only show correlations?

      > The major factors affecting abortion rates are: 1.) comprehensive sex education, 2.) free (federal or privately funded), easily accessible contraceptives (particularly IUDs/Norplant), 3.) Pro-natalist governmental policies, 4.) Improved socioeconomics, 5.) Religion 6.) Modernization and the liberation of women

      Do all those factors affect abortion rates in the same direction, or is the list inconsistent -- some factors affecting the rates in one direction, some in the other?

      3.
      > “Abortion rates around the world generally reflect the religious and political power in the country, the cultural values, and the availability of contraception.” – Encyclopedia.com

      How do they reflect political power except in the sense of political power in the form of laws?

      4.
      > http://www.cbsnews.com/news/100000-texas-women-have-tried-to-self-induce-abortion/

      Here is one article that claims to debunk that: "Zero Evidence That More and More Women in Texas Are Performing Abortions on Themselves" http://www.nationalreview.com/article/427303/zero-evidence-women-texas-are-performing-more-and-more-abortions-themselves

      Here is another: "No, study doesn’t prove Texas lawmakers caused 240,000 self-abortion attempts" http://liveactionnews.org/texas-self-abortions-study/

      Now your current points:

      5.
      > @Acyutananda, no policies changed throughout Latin America as a whole particularly in Brazil.

      You had quoted, “a pro-democracy movement . . . rose up against a 1970s-era military dictatorship. . . . Doctors in the public health service provided sterilizations, which became common . . ."

      Don't those sterilizations in the public health service becoming common reflect a change in policy?

      And doesn't "abysmally poor reproductive health and family planning policies" contradict "Doctors in the public health service provided sterilizations, which became common . . ." -- ?

      Delete
    20. Reply to Humanist's February 16, 2016 at 8:40 AM post
      installment 2/2

      6.
      > Did Comstock Laws and illegal abortion stop women from accessing contraceptives by other means or controlling their fertility through contraceptives and abortion in THIS country? No

      No one expects to "stop." Do you think you have proof that those laws didn't save SOME lives? Pre-1973, Rebecca Kiessling's mother, who had been raped, went to a couple of back-alley places but got turned off by what she saw. Kiessling's life was saved by the laws.

      7.
      > If you applaud pro natalist policies then why are so many Pro Lifers against them?

      What if I have no idea? Is this question relevant to anything we have been discussing, or is this simply a datum that you're curious about, and you hope I might know the answer?

      8.
      > I never initiated an argument about the number of children becoming pregnant nor did I suggest it was a huge number or that it impacts abortion/pregnancy rates on a large scale.

      Well, you said it in relation to nationwide birth rates, so you seemed to be suggesting that it had some significance in that relation.

      9.
      > It doesn't matter if only ONE child or 1 million children get pregnant. They should . . .

      And at that time you certainly weren't making the moral argument that you make now. "Should" is a moral claim. You are making this moral claim for the first time. Before you were arguing that unborn child-protection laws are ineffective: "@Acyutananda, when children, teens and women don’t want children, they will not have them." Now you are asserting that they are morally wrong.

      Okay, let's look at that moral assertion.

      > They should have a choice in whether or not they want to carry to term

      This is just an assertion without any argument, but . . .

      > especially when a child's mortality rate increases more so than other age groups when they carry to term that young

      . . . in the case of children (only), you give an argument: the risk to the child.

      I don't know much about this, but common sense would seem to say that any woman with a very small body is more at risk.

      In the US, I believe that the risk on average of dying in childbirth is only 15/100,000 (which happens to be much worse than in Europe). To my moral intuitions, women should be required to take that risk rather than kill one of our unborn sisters or brothers. The woman's bodily rights have to be considered along with the degree of risk. Considering everything, I feel a woman should be allowed to abort, if she wishes, if the risk in her case is significantly higher than that average. (I'm not sure exactly where my moral intuitions would draw the line.) If there are any countries where the maternal mortality rates are extremely high, abortion should be legal in those countries till the rates improve.

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  6. ". . . abortion merely a BandAid for - the real problem. . . . he's only compounding the problem. . . . These 'saviors' in After Tiller do nothing but perpetuate the victimhood of women. They don't actually solve any problems. They just help keep a repulsive system running by propping up a patriarchy that preys on poor women."

    There's usually a difference between a BandAid and compounding a problem / helping keep a system running. I agree with you that in this case the BandAid does compound the problem, and I have my own explanation of how it does that. But I'd like to hear your explanation.

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    1. You are exactly right. I worked In a pregnancy center and had a client who was 32 that had 13 abortions. She didn't want to have another but had 4 children and was struggling to handle her situation. She said she wasn't even sexually active- meaning for her she didn't want or like sex but would get pressured and give in to the guy and would not have or use contraception. You can see the multilayers of her issues. She wanted to place her baby for adoption but baby Dad said no and she ended up aborting. She stated she believed abortion was wrong. SO how has our society contributed to this tragedy? Poverty, Racism, sexism, stereotypes, laws that don't really support her( abortion is legal but adoption for your baby, not possible) The depression and self loathing were heartbreaking. We offered her free post abortion counseling but she never came because her family might find out. This is an extreme case but not that rare except for the amount of abortions. Lots of real work to do.

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    2. pragmaticbboomer56 wrote:

      "You are exactly right."

      Thanks. I had written: "the BandAid [meaning abortion, particularly as performed by Warren Hern] does compound the problem . . ." What you have written most closely related to that is: "SO how has our society contributed to this tragedy? . . . laws that don't really support her( abortion is legal . . .) The depression and self loathing were heartbreaking."

      So do you mean that the work of abortionists often ends up contributing to women's depression and self-loathing (even though technically the abortionists are only doing what the women requested)?

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    3. Carrying to term isn't easy or free. There is an incredible physical, financial, and emotional expense. People look at women with unwanted pregnancies and think, just adopt. You can't adopt out a pregnancy. Do you think gestating to term is easy then throwing your child into the arms of a stranger or our morally bankrupt foster care system - not because you want to, but because you have to due to your socioeconomic circumstances - is a social and moral good for children and their mothers?

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    4. Humanist wrote: "Do you think . . . throwing your child into the arms of a stranger or our morally bankrupt foster care system . . . is a social and moral good for children and their mothers?"

      It may not be good, but then once there's an unwanted pregnancy, no one argues that there is likely to be any really good outcome. We are all trying to find the least of the evils. Clearly you consider that here you have made an argument for abortion. You have argued that it is better, for children and mothers, for the mother to kill the child while it is unborn, than for her to give it to others. But often there are women who cannot care for children already born, also. By your same logic, the women should kill those children.

      Apart from that, Humanist, it seems to me that though some things that you say are logical, on occasion you should take more time to think it all through carefully. I'm not free right now to cover all of my evidence for saying this, but we have already seen a couple of examples, and here are two more:

      "According to recent Gallup polls, and Pew Research, the majority of women identify as Pro Choice, 54%. That I can confirm. As well as most post college graduates are pro choice. I'll have to research the rest."

      This, it seems clear, was an attempt to rebut Destiny's "PLM [Pro-Life Movement]. . . . It's predominantly young people and overwhelmingly female."

      But if you say that the majority of women are pro-choice, you are talking about what percentage of women are pro-choice versus pro-life.

      What Destiny wrote was about what percentage of active pro-lifers are women versus men.

      It's not the same thing. Please think about it.

      "To say the Pro Life movement doesn't want women/mothers, along with abortion providers, to be sent to prison for having and providing abortions is pure naivety."

      And this, it seems clear, was also an attempt to rebut some things that Destiny had said. But:

      1. she never tried to say what the position of everybody in the pro-life movement was regarding criminalization -- she only discussed her own position

      2. there are many, many in the pro-life movement who want only abortionists to be sent to prison, not women/mothers. If you have sources that generalize otherwise about the position of the whole PLM, what are your sources?

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    5. "There are many, many in the pro-life movement who want only abortionists to be sent to prison, not women/mothers."

      Not when the majority of Pro Lifers say abortion is "murder" and embryos and fetuses are "victims".

      "Victim" indicates a CRIME has taken place causing harm to a person.

      If you believe abortion is "murder" and zygotes,embryos and fetuses are "victims" then those involved in said crime are criminals. In the US, there are no instances when someone is involved in the crime of murder, but are not charged with a crime. The pregnant person is equally culpable UNLESS she was FORCED to have an abortion.

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    6. Humanist wrote:

      "the majority of Pro Lifers say abortion is 'murder'"

      What is your source for that information? Do you have a link to a study to that effect?

      Even if you do, I would still ask for a study supporting your assertion "Pro Life women believe it will be good for women and children for mothers to be sent to prison for having an abortion." But let's start with your assertion about "murder."

      "Victim" indicates a CRIME has taken place causing harm to a person.

      Unless the victim is a victim of circumstances, a victim of the system, etc.

      Anyway, first, what is your source for the information about "murder"?

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    7. @Acyutanada, I believe I explained it rather clearly. When you choose words like "murder" and "victim," you are using language indicating a crime has been committed. I have never seen a Pro Lifer go without saying one of these two words to describe abortion at some point.

      We punish those who commit crimes where a murder has been committed and/or a victim results from a crime committed (e.g. assault, murder). The punishments are typically severe.

      Let me ask you. Do you believe abortion is murder?

      Do you believe aborted embryos and fetuses (outside of miscarriages) are the victims of a crime.

      -Humanist

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  7. Not pity, empathy and compassion. Really put yourself in their place. It's the hardest thing ever to do because it forces you to want to act.

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