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Anti-abortion Democrats navigate divide between March for Life and the Women’s March

Anti-abortion activists rally on the National Mall in Washington, on Jan. 19, 2018, during the annual March for Life. Thousands of anti-abortion demonstrators gather in Washington for an annual march to protest the Supreme Court's landmark 1973 decision that declared a constitutional right to abortion. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

WASHINGTON (RNS) — In 2017, Kristen Day was one of relatively few women to attend both the record-breaking Women’s March, whose organizers voiced strong support for abortion rights, and the March for Life, an anti-abortion gathering a few days later.

But this year Day, a Democrat, says she’s only returning to one of them —  and it won’t be the rally that last year drew millions across the country, largely in protest over the way President Trump talked about and treated women.

“I’m not going to the Women’s March this year,” she said. “I don’t feel welcome.”

Day, a Catholic and executive director of Democrats for Life of America, explained that her decision was the result of a “bad experience” at last year’s Women’s March. She said that as the demonstration drew to a close, she was accosted by a marcher who disliked her sign, which read “Pro-life for the whole life.” The attacker allegedly began yelling and banging on her car until police eventually intervened.

Day is one of many progressives who oppose abortion while also touting left-leaning views on other issues, a position she says is increasingly tenuous in today’s polarized political climate.

“A lot of Democrats believe in science, climate change and that life begins in the womb,” Day said. She later added: “These are liberal people. They’re not conservative at all: They support minimum wage increases, maternity leave and immigration reform.”

Yet political strategists are still grappling with how to engage Day and other anti-abortion Democrats, many of whom root their anti-abortion position in their religious faith. And as Democrats express hope of sweeping the U.S. House and Senate this November at the hands of an energized progressive base, it’s unclear whether the party will muster robust engagement of this subgroup, or if doing so is even in their interests.

The number of Democrats who are ambivalent about — or even outright opposed to — abortion is sizable. A 2017 Pew Research survey reported that 22 percent of Democrats believe it should be illegal in all or most cases.

According to 2014 polling data provided to Religion News Service by the Public Religion Research Institute, 24 percent of that group are black Protestants; white evangelical Protestants and Hispanic Catholics account for 14 percent each; 12 percent are religiously unaffiliated, and the rest are small slivers of various religious groups such as white mainline Protestants, Jews, Muslims and others.

But these numbers don’t answer the question of what progressives can do to accommodate this group, or if doing so would be a boon at the ballot box.

Erica Sackin, director of political communications for Planned Parenthood Action Fund, says headline-grabbing controversy obscures an energized progressive electorate galvanized around what she called a “mainstream political belief” — namely that most Americans believe abortion should be legal in all or most cases, a claim backed by data from Pew Research.

A group of women hold up their artwork. They were among the many to carry images of the uterus in protest against statements by President Trump, at the Women’s March on Washington near the National Mall on Jan. 21, 2017. RNS photo by Jerome Socolovsky

“At the end of the day, everybody has different personal feelings about abortion,” she said, noting that Planned Parenthood has its own religious advisory board. “What people across the board can agree on is that it’s not the government’s job to make that decision for people.”

Nevertheless, the Democratic Party remains embroiled over the issue. Tensions came to a head last July, when Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chair Ben Ray Luján declared there would be no “litmus test” on abortion for Democrats seeking office in 2018. The line outraged NARAL Pro-Choice America President Ilyse Hogue, who described it as “an ethically and politically bankrupt strategy.” It also appeared to contradict Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez, who said in April that “every Democrat” should support abortion rights, adding, “That is not negotiable and should not change city by city or state by state.”

Luján’s comments echo those of other prominent progressives, however. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said in April that “of course” it’s possible to be a Democrat and hold anti-abortion views, and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., even endorsed an anti-abortion Democrat in Nebraska.

“We have got to appreciate where people come from and do our best to fight for the pro-choice agenda,” Sanders told NPR. “But I think you just can’t exclude people who disagree with us on one issue.”

According to Day, the back-and-forth may be less about what the majority of Americans think and more about efforts by Democrats to win back conservative parts of the country. She pointed to a 50-page report released in January and co-authored by three-term U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill. The report, “Hope From the Heartland: How Democrats Can Better Serve the Midwest by Bringing Rural, Working Class Wisdom to Washington,” notes that liberal-leaning Americans in Midwestern rural areas often express anti-abortion views. Former Ohio state Rep. Nick Barborak reportedly told the authors that if Democrats expel anti-abortion Democrats, “we might as well write off eastern Ohio.”

PRRI data suggests this assessment would resonate with at least some of the party faithful. According to PRRI’s 2014 poll, 35 percent of Democrats in the South believe abortion should be illegal in all or most cases, as do 27 percent of Democrats in the Midwest.

But looking ahead toward the midterms, the real question is whether anti-abortion Democrats in these regions prioritize the issue as much as their Republican counterparts. Planned Parenthood’s Sackin cited the recent U.S. Senate race in Alabama as evidence they do not: After all, Democrat Doug Jones, who advocated for abortion rights, defeated Republican Roy Moore, who was strictly anti-abortion, in deeply red Alabama. Moreover, she noted some pollsters argue abortion only played a minor role in the election, as Alabama voters who cast their ballots solely on the issue were overwhelmingly Republicans and never “gettable” voters for Jones in the first place.

Day read the results differently. She argued Jones never would have beaten an anti-abortion candidate in the heavily evangelical Christian state were it not for the numerous allegations against Moore of inappropriate behavior toward teen girls.

Regardless, Day isn’t giving up her fight anytime soon. She said she’s considered leaving the Democratic Party in the past but was always brought back by phone calls and messages of encouragement from people across the country.

“There are (millions of) pro-life Democrats out there who want me to fight for them, and bring the party back to life — in two senses of the word,” she said.

About the author

Jack Jenkins

Jack Jenkins is a national reporter for RNS based in Washington, covering U.S. Catholics and the intersection of religion and politics.

218 Comments

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  • It’s going to be interesting to see if the Democrats’ drive for ideological purity will overwhelm their desire to retake the House this year.

  • Thanks for this article. I often feel swept under the rug — if not shamed — by the Democrat party, although I consider myself a progressive activist. Put me in the “ambivalent” category, but I’m one who believes this is not the government’s choice. But seriously: if anyone truly believes that abortion is murder, I would hope they would be marching in the streets!

  • The fact that there have been anti-abortion Democrats for some time means that it has not been much of an issue.

    “Ideological purity” hasn’t entered the picture in over a generation for Democrats (but probably should have). The attempts to enforce such ideas on the GOP have been disastrous for any sense of responsible governance despite having majorities and virtual control of all branches of government.

    Fact of the matter is _INO’s are generally the one’s least respected by their parties and most likely to look at bipartisan efforts.

  • The arguments laid out in the article should demonstrate that a litmus test is bad strategy. The Democrats will have a hard time ever winning the presidency without states like Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan. Simply allowing people to run is not going to automatically reverse reproductive rights. I look at it like the Bernie Sanders question (who is not actually a Democrat but bear with me). I had no intention of voting for Sanders, but he should have been treated fairly and, more importantly, his base should feel good about being and voting for Democrats. Otherwise you’re constantly going to have left-leaning third parties that will hurt the Democratic nominee.
    Bottom line, if there can be pro-choice Republicans, there can be pro-life Democrats — even if I won’t likely vote for them.

  • Those who oppose women’s right to choose to end problem pregnancies show no respect for women’s rights of conscience and religious liberty. If you don’t approve of abortion, then don’t have one. The majority of anti-choicers want government to impose their narrow theologies on all women. — Edd Doerr

  • I’ve struggled with this issue since Roe v Wade and have finally reached an uneasy peace with it.

    I do believe life begins at conception and that the unborn, at whatever stage of development, are human beings whose lives should be considered sacred. At the same time, I recognize how uniquely personal an issue this is for a woman and I can’t justify taking away her autonomy in making it.

    I’ve come to the conclusion that there is no state-sponsored solution. Abortion will never be solved by either legislation or the courts. And, most assuredly, it will never be solved at the ballot box.

  • There’s not a thing wrong with being opposed to abortion. Using the force of law and government to enforce it however, is wrong and bad policy.

  • To add: Amendment 1 – Freedom of Religion, Press, Expression: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion”……..

  • “There’s not a thing wrong with being opposed to [allowing mothers to kill their babies]. Using the force of law and government to enforce it however, is wrong and bad policy.”

  • By the same logic, there should be no bar to human sacrifice because it may well be a part of someone’s dearly-held religious beliefs, if you don’t approve of human sacrifices, then don’t perform one. To oppose others’ right to perform them is to impose your narrow theology on others.”

  • However, when I learned about a nurse who was forced and/or harassed into assisting a doctor in performing an abortion, and given the ultimatum that if she didn’t assist she would lose her job, this made me realize the nurse’s freedom to not participate and keep her job was denied. Justice and human rights were not served to either the nurse or the unborn child (this was also a late term abortion). No respect for a women’s rights of conscience and religious liberty was given to this woman! Talk about narrow theologies on women! This was using the force of law and government. Hopefully, there will be a law that will respect women’s rights to keep their oaths to protect life (nurses take oaths for this), and this law should protect a woman’s right to not participate in an abortion which is the termination of life (there is proof of viability after witnessing babies who lived after botched abortions and today are thriving and are in pretty good health, thank goodness to nurses who intervened and saved their lives, and didn’t leave them for dead).

  • Should a nursing mother, in a “uniquely personal” relationship with her 5 day old daughter. have the “autonomy” to kill her infant?

  • No. Now that I’ve answered your question, please answer mine. Are you in favor of imprisonment for women who have abortions?

  • However, when I learned about a nurse who was forced and/or harassed into assisting a doctor in performing an abortion, and given the ultimatum that if she didn’t assist she would lose her job, this made me realize the nurse’s freedom to not participate and keep her job was denied. Justice and human rights were not served to either the nurse or the unborn child (this was also a late term abortion). No respect for a women’s rights of conscience and religious liberty was given to this woman! Talk about narrow theologies on women! This was using the force of law and government. Hopefully, there will be a law that will respect women’s rights to keep their oaths to protect life (nurses take oaths for this), and this law should protect a woman’s right to not participate in an abortion which is the termination of life (there is proof of viability after witnessing babies who lived after botched abortions and today are thriving and are in pretty good health, thank goodness to nurses who intervened and saved their lives, and didn’t leave them for dead).

  • However, when I learned about a nurse who was forced and/or harassed into assisting a doctor in performing an abortion, and given the ultimatum that if she didn’t assist she would lose her job, this made me realize the nurse’s freedom to not participate and keep her job was denied. Justice and human rights were not served to either the nurse or the unborn child (this was also a late term abortion). No respect for a women’s rights of conscience and religious liberty was given to this woman! Talk about narrow theologies on women! This was using the force of law and government. Hopefully, there will be a law that will respect women’s rights to keep their oaths to protect life (nurses take oaths for this), and this law should protect a woman’s right to not participate in an abortion which is the termination of life (there is proof of viability after witnessing babies who lived after botched abortions and today are thriving and are in pretty good health, thank goodness to nurses who intervened and saved their lives, and didn’t leave them for dead).
    I posted the above message a few hours ago; however, when I returned to this website, this message wasn’t there. Thank God that I copied and pasted my message again

  • That is not even a logical question – there are no other options to thriving for a fetus. If that nursing mother is killed, the baby can still thrive.

    Should then a person who burns down a fertility clinic be charged not only with arson but felony manslaughter of the frozen unwanted, left-over stored embryos housed in the building?

  • I also posted the following comment by replying to Kangaroo52 and edddoerr; however, my message was reported as spam and didn’t post which doesn’t seem fair. Do you know why it was reported as spam? Here is the message I tried to post:
    However, when I learned about a nurse who was forced and/or harassed into assisting a doctor in performing an abortion, and given the ultimatum that if she didn’t assist she would lose her job, this made me realize the nurse’s freedom to not participate and keep her job was denied. Justice and human rights were not served to either the nurse or the unborn child (this was also a late term abortion). No respect for a women’s rights of conscience and religious liberty was given to this woman! Talk about narrow theologies on women! This was using the force of law and government. Hopefully, there will be a law that will respect women’s rights to keep their oaths to protect life (nurses take oaths for this), and this law should protect a woman’s right to not participate in an abortion which is the termination of life (there is proof of viability after witnessing babies who lived after botched abortions and today are thriving and are in pretty good health, thank goodness to nurses who intervened and saved their lives, and didn’t leave them for dead).

  • If there is nothing wrong in using the force of law and government then there is a simpler way to resolve the issue of abortion. Simply mandate vasectomies for all adolescent males with a grandfatheri clause for all currently fertile males that is reversible only by proof of marriage including partner’s consent to become pregnant and socioeconomic stability.

  • I would no more be willing to mandate vasectomies than I would to mandate abortions. Leave people free to make their own decisions, but hold them accountable for the results.

  • Honey, embryos are not “human beings”. You wombsniffers sure come up with weird analogies to try and deny women their civil rights and liberties.

  • If they aren’t human beings, what species are they? It never ceases to amaze me the lengths the anti-lifers go to, to avoid seeing the truth.

  • Honey, you don’t even think that women are human beings. You would accord women with less rights than a corpse.

    Humanist Action: “One cannot harvest the organs of a corpse without the consent of that corpse while it was still living. In contrast, women are expected to donate their body and all of its organs, against their will, if necessary, to support the growth of a fetus. There are even cases in which dead pregnant women are kept on ventilators in order to keep the corpse pregnant for as long as possible. Tellingly, women and girls who are still alive are denied personhood, as evidenced by the United States’ failure to ratify the ERA, even while proposed legislation to accept fertilized eggs as deserving of full human rights circulate through state legislatures.”

    It never ceases to amaze me the deficiency wombsniffers exhibit of basic reproductive biology. Most embryos end up on women’s hygiene products, or straight into the toilet. Human DNA does not bestow special rights on evanescent non sentient embryos.

    “What I’m concerned with is how you develop. I know that you all think about it perpetually that you come from one single cell of a fertilized egg. I don’t want to get involved in religion but that is not a human being. I’ve spoken to these eggs many times and they make it quite clear … they are not a human being.”–Dr. Lewis Wolpert, world renowned developmental and evolutionary biologist, author of “Principles of Development” and “Triumph of the Embryo”

    “I’m also confident that the freshly fertilized zygote is not [a] human [being], either. There’s more to being [a] human [being] than bearing a cell with the right collection of genes.”–Dr. Paul Myers, developmental biologist

  • You might want to to check your logic, accepting that unborn babies are human beings doesn’t require denying that status to their mothers. And appealing to authority with constant quotes doesn’t help you. Science can provide facts, but when it comes to babies’ humanity it can’t make a final determination — that is ultimately society’s decision, and the polls showing majority opposition to elective abortion shows what that decision ultimately is. And that has been a trend against the anti-lifers, for literally millennia. It used to be that slaves weren’t considered human beings, and babies didn’t become human beings until their fathers chose not to have them exposed. We’ve learned better, and we’ll learn that basic truth yet again.

    And anti-lifers are so wrong, when they insist that the DNA of those newly-formed lives doesn’t mean they are human beings. There is no other species they can be a part of, and rights aren’t determined by capabilities alone — there’s a reason eugenics has had to go underground since WWII. That doesn’t mean rights aren’t balanced against each other; most pro-lifers recognize that women shouldn’t have pregnancy forced on them, that’s why we accept exceptions to abortion bans for rape and incest along with the life of the mother, at least if the abortion is performed before the baby is aware. But when women choose to risk pregnancy of their own free will, once they become pregnant those babies’ own right to live factored in.

  • “the polls showing majority opposition to elective abortion shows what that decision ultimately is.”

    What polls? Reference please. I think you are fibbing!

  • Janet, there’s no god there to thank. You alone get credit for your copy and paste skill. And your anecdote is just that, so far just a story. Reference the case or we’ll conclude you made it all up.

  • Names of real people who are abortion survivors; these are the ones who get the credit; not me: Melissa Ohden from Gladstone, MO. Someone intended to scald her to death from the inside out; however, by the grace of God (yes that is with a capital G!) she is more than a statistic because in August of 1977 she survived a failed saline infusion abortion, and was born alive. Two nurses on staff that day found out about her and fought for medical care to be provided to her which saved her life. Also, Gianna Jessen is an Abortion survivor. If you have it in your heart, you can find out about other abortion survivors on the abortionsurvivors.com (the Abortion Survivors Network). I believe them over Planned Parenthood’s claim that they weren’t involved in selling baby body parts. Ephesians 4:18; Matthew 13:14-15; and Isaiah 6:9-10. Yes there is a God!

  • I replied to you further down in these posts as proof that there are abortion survivors who were and are human beings. The definition of a fetus is an unborn child, and to even imagine that anyone could think that an hour, or even a minute before they came out of their mother’s womb they weren’t human beings is unbelievable. However, the names of the nurses who were treated unfairly are Cathy De Carlo from New York who was forced to help with an abortion, and a lady by the last name of Mendoza who lost her job .in 2015 at the Winnebago County Health Department because of her convictions that prevented her from taking a person’s life, including through abortion.

  • Re: “unborn babies”: Honey, embryos are not “babies”, not “children”. You and other wombsniffers start from this false premise. Recall–upwards of 80% of embryos fail to implant within 6 to 12 days after fertilization. Whoosh! Plop! OMG, there goes the “unborn baby” that would have cured cancer! Whoosh! Plop! OMG, there goes the “unborn baby” that would have brought about World Peace! I repeat: each of those millions upon millions of embryos that are lost every year had their own unique human DNA, and it did not bestow special rights on them.
    ——————————-
    Re: “exceptions to abortion bans for rape and incest”: There is no difference between a viable embryo that is naturally flushed from a woman, or a viable embryo conceived in a rape, or a viable embryo that a woman chooses to abort. You are passing judgement on the type of sex a woman has had. The wombsniffer rape exception, sweetie, demonstrates that: “if you support a woman’s right to choose an abortion, only if she’s been raped, you’re saying that a woman needs to be dominated, violated, and humiliated by a man before she deserves the right to control her own body.”
    ——————————–
    Re: “polls showing majority opposition to elective abortion”: No, dear, they do not. You must only look at religious polls like the catholic Marist poll.

    For example, a NBC poll states that 70% of the American populace want to see Roe v Wade stay in place.

    “What’s more, seven in 10 respondents oppose Roe v. Wade being overturned, which is the highest percentage on this question since 1989. “These are profound changes,” says Republican pollster Bill McInturff, who conducted this survey with Democratic pollster Peter D. Hart and his colleagues….McInturff adds that the abortion-related events and rhetoric over the past year – which included controversial remarks on abortion and rape by two Republican Senate as well as a highly charged debate over contraception – helped shaped these changing poll numbers.”

    From Mark Murray: NBC/WSJ poll: “Majority, for first time, want abortion to be legal”.

    Also: “Large majorities want a woman who has decided to have an abortion to have the experience be safe, legal, affordable, and available in her community. They also want the experience to be informed by medically accurate information, respectful of her decision, without pressure, supportive, and without shame. Voters do not want access to be difficult in terms of travel and logistics or expensive.”–Perryundem Research Communication

    https://www.nirhealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/Memo-NIRH-Poll_Final_3.pdf
    ——————————-
    Re: “appealing to authority with constant quotes”: Sweetie, I quote my fellow scientists to demonstrate that I am not alone in supporting a woman’s bodily autonomy. Besides the majority of scientists being pro-choice, our mainstream medical associations support safe legal access to abortion. Polls show that people, who have a graduate level education, are overwhelmingly pro-choice. Yep, people who actually DO science support abortion as reproductive health care.

    Have you noticed that there isn’t a single scientific organization like the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, or National Academy of Sciences demanding an end to abortion? Nope. These organizations have only support for science-based medicine. Note also, dear, that organizations that deny climate change science, call evolution “evilution”, and are anti-vax, are almost unanimously on the ignorant religious anti-choice side.

  • Ephesians 4:18 and Matthew 13:14-15 .. I choose to believe God over science-based medicine, especially when it comes to late-term pregnancies (a fetus is an unborn child). I will keep listening to the abortion survivors as proof that they were viable, and are now living healthy fulfilling lives, although someone tried to kill them during a saline infusion abortion.

  • You can get a hint of it in polls like the latest CBS poll on abortion (Jan 13-16) that found 32% that want stricter restrictions on abortion and another 21% that want it banned entirely, a 53% total. But for the clear proof you need to find the few polls that ask about specific reasons abortions are carried out. The NBC News/WSJ poll in April 2013 kinda did that by asking if abortions should be illegal except for rape/incest and to save the mother’s life, and had 42% say “yes” with another 10% that want it banned even then, another 53% total. But for the best poll on the question you need to go all the way back to a Fox News Poll in 2007 that asked about specific reasons, and found for pregnancy as a result of rape/incest it was 70% legal/21% illegal, for the mother’s life at risk 73%/15%, for the mother’s mental health at risk 56%/28%, fatal birth defect 53%/30% … and for “the pregnancy is unwanted” 39%/50%.

    You can find all these polls at mixed in with all the others at http://www.pollingreport.com/abortion2.htm

  • That’s like saying if you don’t approve of lynching, don’t lynch. Abortion is a violent, lethal attack against an unborn baby.

  • In other words, you too recognize a distinction between abortion and murder. Otherwise, you’d punish women who have abortions the same as you’d punish mothers who kill their children after birth.

    Your position is morally inconsistent. It’s basically the same as punishing a hit man but letting the person who hired him go free.

  • But they are not persons. The Bible (Gen. 1:27 and 2:7) posits personhood beginning at birth. Science shows that the functions of personhood (consciousness and will) are not possible until permitted by brain development, some time after 28 to 32 weeks of gestation.

  • More important is G en. 1:27 and 2:7, which posit the beginning of personhood at birth. Read your Bible.

  • Most aborfions occur between 8 and 12 weeks, when the embryo/early fetus is the size of a raisin to an olive. This is not a “baby”–no EEG waves, not free-living. Abortion is universal and has been going on since there was pregnancy. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that upwards to 56 MILLION WOMEN PER YEAR WORLDWIDE obtain abortions. Undeveloped country or developed, illegal or legal, if a woman doesn’t want to be pregnant, she doesn’t want to be pregnant.

  • Re: “life at conception”: I keep pointing out to people that this is silly, since upwards of 80% of embryos fail to implant within 6 to 12 days after fertilization and are simply shed from sexually active women. Does this mean that “heaven” is packed with gelatinous non sentient embryos wafting about?

    “The majority of embryos die within a few weeks of conception. This fact is widely known within medical circles, but is a surprise to many in the general public… the riskiest time is before the embryo has implanted in the uterine wall (which typically occurs between 8–10 days after conception (Wilcox et al. 1999). During this early stage, the proportion of surviving embryos drops off rapidly and only approximately 50% of them successfully implant…. A mother of three children could be expected to have also had approximately five spontaneous abortions. An embryo’s survival to term is the exception rather than the norm.

    It might seem surprising that these dramatic death rates for early embryos could remain unknown to the general public. However, the reason for this is that most embryo loss occurs before the pregnancy has been detected, and the woman is unaware that anything out of the ordinary has happened. The embryo simply passes out of the uterus with the next menses.”— oby Ord, The Scourge: Moral Implications of Natural Embryo Loss: The American Journal of Bioethics, 8(7): 12–19.

    http://www.amirrorclear.net/academic/papers/scourge.pdf

  • If I respect a woman’s right to choose, what difference does it make what I believe about when life begins? Personal belief isn’t always a matter of empirical evidence. Sometimes it’s a matter of faith.

  • There are many “common expressions” that are not medically accurate.

    “The argument that a fertilized egg or embryo is somehow a prepackaged human destined to be born contradicts all that scientists have learned. Knowledge of human embryology is why biologists use words like “zygote,” “blastula,” “embryo” and “fetus”, not “baby.” Possibly the public’s attitude toward abortions would have been more mature and reasonable if students had learned some basic human embryology in school. But instead, in dozens of states students are only taught that “abortions murder babies” and legislators continue to pass laws based on medieval theologies and pseudoscience that in effect, treat women as obligatory breeding machines. Who is asking the question: when will women, themselves, achieve full personhood?”
    –Charles L. Rulon, Emeritus, Life & Health Sciences

  • Honey, your belief in an invisible megalomaniac middle-east deity has no power over the physical rights of women, who actually exist on this earth. It’s so pathetic when you people invoke this ‘god’, that supposedly slaughtered every pregnant woman and innocent child on earth in the fable of Noah’s Flood, yet claim this bloodthirsty deity cares about the “unborn”.

  • DoughH prefers poorly written polls that favor his notions. The polls I’ve read show a majority of our voters prefer that Roe vs Wade to stand and that abortion remain safe and legal for women.

    It’s amazing how many people are unaware of the overbearing abortion restrictions imposed on women in bible-humping states. This PerryUndem research poll asked specific questions on abortions and informed their audience of restrictions being put in place.

    “Large majorities want a woman who has decided to have an abortion to have the experience be safe, legal, affordable, and available in her community. They also want the experience to be informed by medically accurate information, respectful of her decision, without pressure, supportive, and without shame. Voters do not want access to be difficult in terms of travel and logistics or expensive.”

    https://www.nirhealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/Memo-NIRH-Poll_Final_3.pdf

  • The definition of a “fetus” can refer to a plant seed.

    Embryologists don’t even think a gelatinous non sentient evanescent embryo is a “human being”.

    “What I’m concerned with is how you develop. I know that you all think about it perpetually that you come from one single cell of a fertilized egg. I don’t want to get involved in religion but that is not a human being. I’ve spoken to these eggs many times and they make it quite clear … they are not a human being.”–Dr. Lewis Wolpert, world renowned developmental and evolutionary biologist, author of “Principles of Development” and “Triumph of the Embryo”

    “I’m also confident that the freshly fertilized zygote is not [a] human [being], either. There’s more to being [a] human [being] than bearing a cell with the right collection of genes.”–Dr. Paul Myers, developmental biologist

    Sweetie, zygotes, blastocysts, embryos, and fetuses have a high failure rate—medically it’s known as “fetal wastage”. Abortion is the norm in sexually active women. To understand that not every “human” embryo is a human being, you really should read up on the subject of reproduction. I recommend: Toby Ord, 2008, The Scourge: Moral Implications of Natural Embryo Loss: The American Journal of Bioethics, 8(7): 12–19; it’s free online

  • This belief in “life at conception” appears to bother you, so I posted a reference. I appreciate your ‘respect’ for a woman’s right to choose, but I see that it gives you no ease of mind to know that most embryologists/biologists do not have this belief in “life at conception”.

  • Truly appreciate your respect for women’s rights, but, as a pro-choicer, I want to ask, if I may, what do you mean by “won’t be solved by legislation or courts”? Despite differences in opinions, the law has to be clearly defined, no? when termination of pregnancy is legal, when not, conditions, etc

  • you cornered your opponent it looks like 🙂 I tried many times to ask their ilk about those frozen embryos that get discarded… crickets. Thats some main gap in their logic i guess

  • Sweetie, being composed of human DNA does not make a non sentient evanescent embryo a “human being”. The conscious, free-living (not attached by an umbilical cord), breathing WOMAN is the “human being”.

    Here are the words from the world’s most renowned embryologist:

    “What I’m concerned with is how you develop. I know that you all think about it perpetually that you come from one single cell of a fertilized egg. I don’t want to get involved in religion but that is not a human being. I’ve spoken to these eggs many times and they make it quite clear … they are not a human being.”–Dr. Lewis Wolpert, world renowned developmental and evolutionary biologist, author of “Principles of Development” and “Triumph of the Embryo”

    Others who study and work with embryos also do not view embryos as “human beings”.

    “I’m also confident that the freshly fertilized zygote is not [a] human [being], either. There’s more to being [a] human [being] than bearing a cell with the right collection of genes.”–Dr. Paul Myers, developmental biologist

    “The idea that “life begins at conception” is not a scientific one. Since the disproof of ‘spontaneous generation’ (1668-1859), we have known that life only derives from life. Life arose billions of years ago and has continued since as a cycle. Assigning a beginning to a cycle (like the year) is arbitrary.”–Dr. Robert Wyman, neurobiologist

    Zygotes, blastocysts, embryos, and fetuses have a high failure rate—medically it’s known as “fetal wastage”, or “pregnancy wastage”. Abortion is the norm in sexually active women. To understand that not every “human” embryo is a human being, you really should read up on the subject of reproduction. I recommend: Toby Ord, 2008, The Scourge: Moral Implications of Natural Embryo Loss: The American Journal of Bioethics, 8(7): 12–19; it’s free online

  • My point is that, while I consider abortion tragic, at the end of the day it must remain a matter of personal choice. I don’t believe that the state can eliminate it by force of law. And the dirty little secret in Washington is that most members of Congress agree with me but many won’t admit it because they want abortion as a wedge issue during elections.

    That said, you are right that the law must be clearly defined. Exactly what the parameters should be, I’m not qualified to say.

  • “Disproven: The Myth of Infants ‘Born Alive’ After Abortions”

    …there is no evidence of a pattern of infants being “born alive” after an abortion, much less of doctors killing infants in those circumstances. In responses from 38 attorneys general to date, not one AG [Attorney General] office provided evidence that it has ever had cause to prosecute a physician for delivering and then killing a viable fetus, indicating that this notion—that there are multiple cases of fetuses surviving an abortion, only to be killed by a doctor—is a confection of the anti-choice camp, designed to replace fact-based arguments with the lowest form of fear-mongering.

    Many of the responses from the attorneys general sound much like this one, from the Utah attorney general:

    We did not find any cases in which a person was prosecuted for the deliberate killing of a newborn who was delivered alive in the process of an abortion. Similarly, prosecutors did not indicate that they had prosecuted any cases because a woman died or suffered serious complications as a result of an abortion. Finally, we did not find any cases in which a person was prosecuted for performing abortions after the statutory period.

    https://rewire.news/article/2013/08/22/disproven-the-myth-of-infants-born-alive-after-abortions/

  • You reveal your utter stupidity with that phrase “baby body parts”. That is what Robert Dear uttered, “no more baby body parts”, when he killed three people at a Planned Parenthood in Colorado springs and wounded nine others. Should we be watching you, honey?

    Donating tissue from aborted fetuses has been LEGAL for decades. Scientists can use the biological material, which is a rich source of stem cells, to develop new ways to treat AIDS, spinal cord injuries, diabetes, cancer, and eyesight loss such as macular degeneration.

    Medical research using fetal tissue has been used in pharmaceutical drug development since the 1930’s.

    “Human fetal kidney cells were used to develop the polio vaccine that led to the 1954 Nobel Prize in Medicine…Fetal tissue research has already led to major advances in human health care. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “some vaccines such as rubella and varicella [were] made from human cell-line cultures, and some of these cell lines originated from aborted fetal tissue…”–American Society for Cell Biology

    Planned Parenthood is not selling “baby body parts” for profit. I watched the first three supposed “sting videos” by that charlatan David Daleiden, and all I saw was doctors discussing what doctors do. Costs discussed are transportation and preservative costs of human tissue to tissue banks, which are LEGAL, honey. Attorney Generals from red- and blue-held states have found no wrongdoing on the part of Planned Parenthood.

  • My beliefs don’t bother me. What does bother me is that an unsolvable issue has so divided the body politic, been exploited by politicians for 45 years and helped the likes of Donald Trump become president. That’s what bothers me.

  • The fact that tRump was elected bothers me also. I used to have faith that there were more well-educated sensible voters than not. I was certainly disavowed of that notion!

  • Most biology texts seem to recognize mammalian life as having a cycle that commences with conception and ends with death.

    Do you have some citations to “embryologists/biologists” who dispute this, or this simply another one your attempts to dress up personal opinions as “science”?

  • Dr Wolpert is a known major depressive curmudgeon and all-around eccentric.

    Dr Myers is not expert on philosophy or theology, which are the areas your quotation addresses. He is out of his lane.

    “Human being” is a moral and legal definition. The relevance of what embryologists think about it, other than to allow us to determine where in the human life cycle a topic of discussion is, and whether or not its DNA confirms it is human, is not at all clear.

    You seem to find this “fetal wastage” fascinating as it appears in every discussion on the topic of abortion.

    Since the discussion invariably deals with moral and legal issues, try to explain to us the relevance of it to either or both.

    Is the argument basically that since it happens naturally, and in fact is common, taking it into your own hands and performing it can’t be immoral, sort of a spin off Magnus Hirscheld’s “what is natural cannot be immoral”?

  • Sweetie, Wolpert is a world renowned embryologist and developmental biologist, whose textbooks are used in university biology classes. Yep, he battled depression and wrote a book about it. You seem to think that his bout with depression negates his international reputation as an outstanding scientist.

    Re: “philosophy or theology”: Honey, you think that the “soft science” of philosophy, and the total nonsense of theology, has something to do with denying a woman her physical rights to her own body. No, dear, abstract concepts in some people’s heads have nothing to do with a woman’s ownership of her body. I keep reminding you that it’s the 21st Century. Not biblical times. Sweetie, I suspect you are far, far lost down the road of what my escaped-catholic mother refers to as ‘catholicuckooism’. Not everybody subscribes to your particular religious dogma, dear. Many of us view patriarchal misogynistic religion as downright laughable. We are not going to be ruled over by your superstitions, dear.

    Re: “fetal wastage”: You can’t grasp the basic fact that evanescent non sentient embryos are not sacrosanct. There is no magical “life at conception”. This is silly since upwards of 80% of embryos fail to implant, and according to the CDC, IVF clinics, and organizations such as March of Dimes, an estimated 25 to 35 to 50% of pregnancies spontaneously abort. Trillions of people might have existed, but they don’t. So, yes, dear, abortion is a routine natural bodily process in a woman’s reproductive system. Since implanted as well as un-implanted perfectly viable embryos are shed from sexually active women, what difference does it make if a woman chooses to un-implant her own embryo? NONE.

    Morals are highly subjective, dear. Speaking of Magnus Hirschfeld, for example, you may have the silly notion that homosexuality is a “sin”, when it is a common behavior within the animal kingdom.

  • Sweetie, when Wolpert becomes a world philosopher, theologian, or jurist be sure to let us know.

    The question “Is the argument basically that since it happens naturally, and in fact is common, taking it into your own hands and performing it can’t be immoral …” was actually a Yes or No question.

    Your bloviating “Re: ‘fetal wastage’: You can’t grasp the basic fact that evanescent non sentient embryos are not sacrosanct. There is no magical ‘life at conception’. This is silly since upwards of 80% of embryos fail to implant, and according to the CDC, IVF clinics, and organizations such
    as March of Dimes, an estimated 25 to 35 to 50% of pregnancies spontaneously abort. Trillions of people might have existed, but they don’t. So, yes, dear, abortion is a routine natural bodily process in a woman’s reproductive system. Since implanted as well as un-implanted perfectly viable embryos are shed from sexually active women, what difference does it make if a woman chooses to un-implant her own embryo? NONE.” did not answer it.

    So, answer it.

    Btw, the fact that upwards of 80% of embryos fail to implant does not answer the question of ‘life at conception’.

  • The gospel of Luke says that the unborn John the Baptist leaped for joy in the presence of the unborn Jesus.
    But this is not strictly a religious issue. It’s wrong to murder innocent little babies even if there is no God.

  • The “pro-choice” people are ignorant individuals who we should pity and keep away from innocent little babies.

  • Abortion is wrong at any stage of pregnancy. Rape is universal, too, but it shouldn’t be permitted.

  • Life begins at fertilization. Who cares about the “opinions” of stupid people. This issue is not debatable or a matter of opinion.

  • How about you stop being melodramatic? If you think I’m misrepresenting your position, explain why you don’t think women who receive abortions should be imprisoned.

  • “…a biology textbook…shows life as a cycle. There is no start point. Fertilization is just one of the events going around the cycle. This is the essence of sexual reproduction.”–Dr. Robert Wyman, neurobiologist

    There is no “start point” in figures depicting the “cycle of life” of humans in my university biology textbooks. I wish we could post figures here. The cycle shows meiosis, the haploid stages of our gametes, to fertilization and formation of a zygote, a diploid stage, through mitosis and the adult stage.

  • “Life”, my dear, began 3.6 billion years ago. Humanity can genetically trace its lineage to 1.6 billion years.

    Honey, embryologists/biologists are not “stupid people”–you’re thinking of bible-humpers.

    “Despite many claims to the contrary, life does not begin at conception: It is an unbroken chain that stretches back nearly to the origin of the Earth, 4.6 billion years ago. Nor does human life begin at conception: It is an unbroken chain dating back to the origin of our species, hundreds of thousands of years ago. Every human sperm and egg is, beyond the shadow of a doubt, alive. They are not human beings, of course. However, it could be argued that neither is a fertilized egg. ” – Carl Sagan, astrophysicist, astrobiologist

    “…a biology textbook…shows life as a cycle. There is no start point. Fertilization is just one of the events going around the cycle. This is the essence of sexual reproduction.”–Dr. Robert Wyman, neurobiologist

  • There’s so many infantile types here, honey, terms of endearment is just coming naturally–like talking to little children.

  • Re: “Abortion is wrong at any stage of pregnancy.”: Says a male, who lacks a vagina, uterus, who doesn’t gush blood once a month, or who will never endure an unwanted or complicated pregnancy, who is a bible-humper, not a doctor.

    There are over 100,000 ectopic pregnancies a year in this country, and an abortion saves the woman from hemorrhaging to death from ruptured fallopian tubes. Abortion saves the lives of women suffering from placental abruption, pulmonary hypertension, preeclampsia, and other pregnancy complications.

    Abortion is basic reproductive health care for women, and is considered so and supported by our major medical health organizations such as the American Medical Association, Academy of Family Physicians, American Medical Women’s Association, Physicians for Reproductive Health, and American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

    Wombsniffing males are so ridiculous. Feel free to gestate every single pregnancy that takes place in your body. When you get pregnant, then you get to make decisions about your pregnancy. Oh, you don’t have a uterus? Then the decision whether to gestate or not is up to the person who is actually pregnant. See how that works?

  • Lewis Wolpert is far, far more valuable as a scientist, than any theologian or philosopher. Scientists have contributed to society more so than any theologian.

    Honey, you just don’t like the ‘answers’.

    “The idea that “life begins at conception” is not a scientific one. Since the disproof of ‘spontaneous generation’ (1668-1859), we have known that life only derives from life. Life arose billions of years ago and has continued since as a cycle. Assigning a beginning to a cycle (like the year) is arbitrary.”

    …a biology textbook…shows life as a cycle. There is no start point. Fertilization is just one of the events going around the cycle. This is the essence of sexual reproduction.”–Dr. Robert Wyman, neurobiologist

  • Science tells us no such thing, dear. There is no scientific consensus as to ‘when’ a fertilized egg is a “human being”.

    Wannabe womb regulators have the notion that the nanosecond sperm penetrates egg that POOF! there’s a “human being”. Most undereducated and/or fundie religious folk hold to that notion, even though upwards of 80% of embryos fail to thrive and are simply shed from sexually active women. Other people, biologists/embryologists, recognize that within 12 days that the fertilized egg may split to generate one or more embryos, so they view gastrulation as the start of new one or more “human being(s)”. Some scientists view viability of the fetus as the start of a new “human being”, especially at the development of EEG waves at around 25-26 weeks, or at the development of thalamocortex connections and higher brain functions at around 29-30 weeks. Others take the start of a new “human being” as being at birth, with the intake of breath to activate the lungs, changes in the circulatory system, heart, and accompanying changes in other organs.

  • Honey, Sweetie, what is truly pathetic is that you have no regard, love, or care for the innocent abortion survivors who were born alive and left for dead. Abortionist are the ones who are bloodthirsty.

  • Medically accurate information is that innocent viable little babies are being born after botched abortions, and with caring, loving people lived through this ordeal.

  • When will abortion survivors, regardless if they are male or female, achieve full personhood? How many roads must they walk down before they are called humans?

  • We did not end legalized child prostitution as we moved from the pagan era into the Christian era because of scientists.

    Scientists were not at the forefront of opposition to Stalin or Hitler.

    What you’re engaging in is called “scientism”:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientism

    I am glad, however, that you provide a citation for life is a cycle, although if it’s a cycle, it can hardly have “no start point”, can it?

    Oh, those silly neurobiologists.

  • It can’t be a cycle if does not have a start point and an end point.

    Just like one shouldn’t bring a knife to a gunfight, apparently one shouldn’t bring a neurobiologist to a philosophical or ethical discussion.

    Perhaps he was thinking of the “Lion King”?

  • You believe in myths, dear. But then…you probably think that dinosaurs romped with Adam and Eve in Eden.

    “Disproven: The Myth of Infants ‘Born Alive’ After Abortions”

    …there is no evidence of a pattern of infants being “born alive” after an abortion, much less of doctors killing infants in those circumstances. In responses from 38 attorneys general to date, not one AG [Attorney General] office provided evidence that it has ever had cause to prosecute a physician for delivering and then killing a viable fetus, indicating that this notion—that there are multiple cases of fetuses surviving an abortion, only to be killed by a doctor—is a confection of the anti-choice camp, designed to replace fact-based arguments with the lowest form of fear-mongering.

    Many of the responses from the attorneys general sound much like this one, from the Utah Attorney General:

    We did not find any cases in which a person was prosecuted for the deliberate killing of a newborn who was delivered alive in the process of an abortion. Similarly, prosecutors did not indicate that they had prosecuted any cases because a woman died or suffered serious complications as a result of an abortion. Finally, we did not find any cases in which a person was prosecuted for performing abortions after the statutory period.

    https://rewire.news/article

  • Re: “pagan era into the Christian era’: Oh those silly crusades and inquisitions, the English Civil Wars and French Wars of Religion. Christianity–such a peaceful religion. Snort.

    Honey, there are still pagans; there are still animists…and of course, there are still all sorts of religious wars–what was that you said about theologians?

    Sweetie, considering the ‘child sexual abuse by catholic priests’ scandals, I wouldn’t boldly state that child prostitution ended in the Christian era.

  • Embryos are genetically human tissue and cells. Trying to pretend they are a member of a species is just plain ridiculous

  • Abortion is not murder, there are no babies involved, and its impossible for a mindless, nonviable collection of cells and tissue to be innocent or guilty. Trying to hide behind emotionally manipulative language is dishonest and tedious

  • No baby involved. Unborn baby is an oxymoron. The embryo / fetus is genetically human. All you are doing is trying to pretend everyone should have to see the fetus the way you see it and feel about the fetus the way you feel about it. And no one is anti life so that just makes you look stupid. Braying about WWII makes you look stupid too. You are the one with the fascist mind set. By the way agreeing to sex is not agreeing to pregnancy and children arent the way women get punished for screwing, although your mother would probably argue that point with me.

  • JanetMoron 99% of abortions take place by 22 weeks, over 95% by 16 weeks, over 90% in the first trimester, nearly 70% by 8 weeks. Id suggest you learn what the term ‘viable’ means when it describes a fetus. And every one of those ‘abortion survivor’ stories are full of contradictions, inconsistencies and flaws.

  • jerrycanthink youre the one proving ignorance and a serious lack of intelligence here. If you think everyone who is pro choice must have had an abortion or think that pro choice women do not have children you really are laughably simple minded.

  • Jerrycanthink no, its not like that. Stop being stupid. Unborn baby is an oxymoron and there is nothing ‘violent’ about a typical abortion. Trying to compare lynching to a womans right to decide if she does or does not continue a pregnancy is moronic. I notice the woman has no part at all in your absurd melodramatic arguments

  • Why do you imagine you are somehow in a better position to decide if a woman can deal with the demands of a pregnancy than she is?

  • the_idiot_loves _ stupid_questions – virtually anyone can take care of an infant. No one cant take over a pregnancy even for a single moment.

  • Jerrycanthink the egg and sperm are living before conception so no, life does not begin at conception. You are the one whose opinion doesnt matter, Jerry, because ignorance and stupidity seem to be its foundation

  • Oh please. There arent enough of them to matter. And starting another forced birth pro control freak misogynistic pig part is hardly a reasonable political move

  • Why woman should use their right to choose not before but after pregnancy? It makes no sense, except for those who want to see abortion business striving.

  • Jerry seems unaware of contraceptive failure, women’s changed circumstances, or late discovered fetal or women’s medical problems. And why is it any of HIS business as a male?

  • Life may begin at conception, but personhood is not possible until affer 28-32 weeks of gestation. That’s what scientists have told the Supreme Court.

  • And there are still ninnies, which you seem determined to illustrate.

    You’ve basically run out of runway, and “silly crusades and inquisitions, the English Civil Wars and French Wars of Religion”, “’child sexual abuse by catholic priests’ scandals” make that clear.

    As to “child prostitution”, I wrote “legalized child prostitution”. You missed “legalized”, so apparently being a “scientist” is unrelated to reading comprehension, and as far as I am aware abuse by the various rabbis, minister, priests, and especially school teachers – the most prevalent form – do not involve prostitution.

  • …and there are still religious wingnuts, alas, plaguing our society with their superstitions.

    It must annoy you to no end, honey, to know that every day, women are exercising their rights over their bodies, and receiving reproductive care that they choose–not what you, a religious nutter, would choose for them. Stamp your feet and pout, dear, you are irrelevant in women’s medical decisions to obtain abortions.

  • Since I’ve never presented a religious argument, your cheese appears to be slipping from its cracker.

    What I have pointed out is:

    – you do not have your facts straight

    – what facts you do get straight do not support your conclusions

    – you’re doing scientism, not science

    – you keep citing people whose credentials do not appear to support their expertise on the matters on which they pontificate

    The question being discussed is a moral and legal one, and you bring essentially nothing to that discussion except insults and slogans – e.g. “religious nutter”, “women are exercising their rights over their bodies”.

    Ho hum.

  • You don’t know what you’re talking about. At fertilization a life separate and distinct from the mother begins to exist. You can think what you want but we have to give our unborn sisters and brothers legal protection to protect them from your thinking.

  • The life of an individual begins at fertilization. You are confusing when your find life worth protecting with when it technically begins. A feline life begins at fertilization. A canine life begins at fertilization. A human life begins at fertilization. When you think life is ethically killable is a separate issue.

  • A thirty year old person is genetically human tissue and cells. This person began to live at fertilization.

  • Just a bit of advice. If you’re going to call someone else stupid, you really should proofread your message for proper punctuation.

  • Personhood isn’t a scientific issue anyway. God is a person, the devil is a person, angels are persons but no one claims they are human beings. However, ONE of the definitions of “person” is human being, so all human beings are persons by definition.

  • So what? The sperm and egg are not separate individuals with their own DNA.They share the life of the person who produces them. The life of the particular unborn person BEGINS at fertilization.

  • Re: “The question being discussed is a moral and legal one”: Then there’s nothing to discuss, dear. Morals are subjective, and abortion is legal.

    Re: “I’ve never presented a religious argument”: You’re a giggle, honey…considering this is a religious website. Don’t make Jesus sad.

    Re: “you do not have your facts straight”: “There are none so blind as those who will not see.” Sweetie, facts have been laid before you that do not agree with your deeply held religious misogyny, hence you ignore the fact that abortion constitutes reproductive health care for women.

    How absolutely ridiculous that you claim biologists, from Wolpert to Myers to Wyman to Hemnes to Kiely, etc. etc, who actually do research in the field of embryology and developmental biology and heart disease, lack “credentials”! Honey, these are the people who understand the health of women’s bodies–not “theologians”.

  • No, the first step in creating a ‘new human being’ is NOT fertilization, but when ova and sperm are created through meiosis.

    Your mother and father started in your grandmothers wombs, where germ cells originated ..and this is the start of your life.

  • I would love to hear your scientific truths.

    For example, you mentioned the “scientific truth” that 50% plus of concepti miscarry.

    He asked you the moral/legal significance of that – does that mean if nature does it all the time can we do it as well without moral qualms? – and got a tapdance.

    I’d love to read the “scientific truth” about what the moral implications of that are.

  • Are there any circumstances, getting back to the cycle of life thing, where an ova or a sperm by itself takes off and implants and a birth results?

  • If morals are subjective as you argue, then abortion may be immoral.

    And abortion could become illegal easily as public opinion shifts against it, so that’s not a very productive point in the context of what we *ought* to do or advocate for.

    He’s never presented a religious argument – why would that make you or Jesus sad?

    And he did not say they credentials, he pointed out they lacked credentials – just like you lack them – as experts in morality or law. I’m still giggling over your “expert” who claimed there was no beginning to the life cycle for example.

  • Can either – by itself – result in a birth?

    Or does it require that they unite?

    That’s pretty much a “yes” or “no” question.

  • No, sweetie, hair is composed of human DNA; that does not make hair a “human being”. Nails are composed of human DNA; that does not make nails a “human being.

    Recall, honey, that upwards of 80% of embryos are simply shed from sexually active women within 6 to 12 days after fertilization. The CDC, IVF clinics, and health organizations such as the March of dimes estimate that anywhere from 25 to 35 to 50% of pregnancies spontaneously abort. Hence, possession of human DNA does not constitute a “human being”–which is the WOMAN.

  • That’s an evasion, not an answer.

    And we both know why you’re evading it.

    So much for “scientific truth”.

  • Yes, the life cycle begins at fertilization. Prior to that there are ova, and sperm, and neither by itself can ever under any circumstances result in a new life. Once they join the basis for a new human being exists, with its own DNA and blueprint.

  • ‘Mistaken’ in exactly ‘what’, dear? I have presented you with basic biological reproductive facts.

  • Jerry, honey, sperm and egg do each have their own unique DNA. I take it you’ve never had a university-level developmental biology course?

    Re: “The life of the particular unborn person BEGINS at fertilization.”: Yet most fertilized eggs, i.e., embryos, remain “unborn”–they go Whoosh! Plop!, onto women’s hygiene’s products or straight into the toilet. Is heaven full of gelatinous non sentient embryos wafting blindly about?

  • No, it is not.

    Sweetie, you’ve been informed over and over again that upwards of 80% of embryos fail to implant in a uterine wall within 6 to 12 days after fertilization and are flushed from sexually active women during menses (Drs. Michael Sandel, John Opitz, former President’s Council on Bioethics). Too many of your ignorant ilk have this simplistic notion that once a month only one unfertilized egg is ejected from a woman, but no. If a woman is sexually active. embryos are also flushed in menstrual flow. Gynecologists state that half of those embryos, had they implanted, could have developed into viable fetuses. March of Dimes estimates that half of all pregnancies end in spontaneous abortion. Hence, abortion is a natural bodily process in a woman’s reproductive system. It is illogical to accuse a woman of murder for choosing to abort at the same gestational stage as a natural abortion.

    If you’re okay with the will of nature, or an invisible ‘god’, aborting “unborn babies”, but not a woman having control over her own reproductive system, then you’re just a hypocrite.

  • Having their own DNA is only relevant if either – by itself – could implant and eventually be born.

  • Hair is comprised of keratin.

    The moral implication of “Recall, honey, that upwards of 80% of embryos are simply shed from
    sexually active women within 6 to 12 days after fertilization.” seem to be that if nature does it all the time, choosing to do it yourself is no big deal, right?

  • “Theologians”, who think their silly mythological beliefs should be imposed on the entire populace, ought to be illegal, but alas, our country is littered with them.

  • If morals are subjective, then the case of those against abortion is per se as good as those who tout it, and nothing stands in the way of making it illegal.

    You presented biologists opining on morality, which they cannot be experts on, particularly since morality is subjective.

  • Re: protect them from your thinking.”: No, dear, WE have to protect WOMEN from you religious-based wingnuts, who believe in an invisible friend and an invisible enemy, and have the insane notion that you personally speak for the will of that megalomaniac middle-east deity “friend” of yours.

    Re: I’m a well educated person too, stinky.”: Somehow, “theology” just doesn’t translate into “well educated” for me, especially when you “theologian” types have the inane belief that women should be forced to breed. Are we trading elementary school insults, honey? Shall I call you “poopy pants”?

    You need discourse with other more sensible “theologians”, such as in the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, or The Christian Left, or Catholics for Choice.

  • Sweetie, hair has human DNA. How else do lab personnel extract human DNA from hair follicles? The hair shaft may host degraded DNA, but nevertheless, DNA can be extracted from keratin.

    You haven’t had biology courses, have you?

    Re: “if nature does it all the time, choosing to do it yourself is no big deal, right?”: Ah, now you’re “evolving”, dear. I have already stated as such:

    “Abortion is a routine natural bodily process in a woman’s reproductive system. Since implanted as well as un-implanted perfectly viable embryos are shed from sexually active women, what difference does it make if a woman chooses to un-implant her own embryo? NONE.”

    Plus:

    “Early pregnancy loss is important for our species. As many as 70% of human conceptions may never develop, and a third of recognized pregnancies terminate spontaneously through miscarriage…From a biological perspective, induced abortion is an extension of miscarriage—a continued winnowing designed to ensure that children are well born….healthy, wanted, and loved.” ― David A. Grimes, M.D., Every Third Woman In America: How Legal Abortion Transformed Our Nation

  • Re: “moral implications” that “50% plus of concepti miscarry.”: You must have missed my prior posts, dear. I have already addressed this by stating that it is quite silly to rant on and on and on about how every embryo is a baby, child, human being, person, whatever, when every year, millions upon millions of viable implanted as well as un-implanted embryos are routinely shed from sexually active women–what difference does it make if a woman chooses to un-implant an embryo herself? NONE.

    Many scientists have spoken about the basic fact that most embryos are never born–so why is it that if a woman chooses not to gestate an embryo, it’s suddenly a catastrophic ‘evil’ act to bible humpers?

    “Early pregnancy loss is important for our species. As many as 70% of human conceptions may never develop, and a third of recognized pregnancies terminate spontaneously through miscarriage…From a biological perspective, induced abortion is an extension of miscarriage—a continued winnowing designed to ensure that children are well born….healthy, wanted, and loved.” ― David A. Grimes, M.D., Every Third Woman In America: How Legal Abortion Transformed Our Nation

    “If the embryo loss that accompanies natural procreation were the moral equivalent of infant death, then pregnancy would have to be regarded as a public health crisis of epidemic proportions: Alleviating natural embryo loss would be a more urgent moral cause than abortion, in vitro fertilization, and stem-cell research combined,” declared Michael Sandel, a Harvard University government professor, also a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics.

  • Sweetie, those of you who object to abortion, simply don’t have to have one. This basic concept constantly eludes you bible humpers. You do NOT own women’s bodies. Women make their own medical choices in the modern world, and abortion is a medical choice.

    Honey, you perform a pathetic laughable dance. All our major mainstream medical organizations support safe legal access to abortion as reproductive health care.

    American Medical Association: “[We] oppose legislative interference with the practice of medicine and a woman’s relationship with her doctor… Access to safe and legal abortion is an important aspect of women’s health care. Abortion is one of the safest medical procedures performed in the United States.”
    ——————————-
    “”The American Medical Women’s Association [AMWA] will oppose efforts to overturn or weaken Roe v. Wade, either directly or indirectly, as in the case of legislation which burdens access to the abortion procedure. AMWA considers all such laws and court rulings to interfere with the doctor-patient relationship, and thus to violate medical autonomy and pose threats to the individual as well as the public health.”
    ———————————
    “Safe, legal abortion is a necessary component of women’s health care. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists supports the availability of high-quality reproductive health services for all women and is committed to improving access to abortion.
    ———————————
    Association of Reproductive Health Care Professionals: “Abortion care is a critical component of comprehensive reproductive health care, and ARHP supports a woman’s right to choose to have an abortion. The decision to continue or terminate a pregnancy belongs to the pregnant woman. ARHP opposes any judicial, legislative, or administrative attempt at the local, state, or federal levels to ban any abortion procedure or medical procedure to terminate a pregnancy.”
    —————————-
    Academy of Family Physicians:
    “RESOLVED, That the American Academy of Family Physicians support chapter efforts that oppose legislation that imposes on abortion providers unnecessary requirements that infringe on the practice of evidence-based medicine, and be it further
    RESOLVED, That the American Academy of Family Physicians oppose national legislation that imposes unnecessary requirements on abortion providers, reducing doctors’ ability to provide evidence-based and patient-centered care…”

  • **If you’re okay with the will of nature, or an invisible ‘god’, aborting “unborn babies”, but not a woman having control over her own reproductive system, then you’re just a hypocrite.**
    Well, that’s an interesting point. There are people who are concerned about endangered species, and threats to them. Oddly enough, they do not dance around in glee and do nothing when there is a NATURAL threat to an endangered species. For instance, I saw a documentary a while back about an endangered fish that existed only in one stream. The stream got clogged with ash due to a NATURALLY occurring wildfire, and rather than simply shrug and do nothing, a concerned ichthyologist caught as many of the endangered fish as he could, and put them into aquariums for several months until the ash cleared out of the stream.

  • Honey, you’re so incredibly misogynistic, I have come to the conclusion that you resent the hell out of mere women controlling the most important facet of humanity: the continuation of the species.

    “If all the men on earth died tonight, the species could continue on frozen sperm. If the women disappear, it’s extinction.”–Dr. Greg Hampikian

  • Your mentality is the same way slaves were treated: nothing unfair about asking them to do their jobs. Also, your mentality is the same as a man who goes to a female prostitute, and the prostitute is told to perform a sex service that is against her moral conscience, and the prostitute had already provided a sexual service to this man that wasn’t against her conscience; however, the man insists that if the prostitute doesn’t provide the other sexual service, he will make sure that her pimp fires her. Taking or destroying life is not health care.

  • Honey, Sweetie, actually shouldn’t be names for you. My joy would NEVER come by harming someone like you who thinks they are superior to every other human being. I actually have compassion and pity for people like you, although YOU are the one WE should be watching. I am going to do my best to no longer waste my time with you because it is better served with people who open their hearts, ears, and eyes to the TRUTH, and yes, there are those who have decided to open their hearts, and are happy they didn’t go through with an abortion. Like Schumer said, it’s just like talking to jello!

  • You are totally misled. I choose to believe the following:
    Names of real people who are abortion survivors; these are the ones who get the credit; not me: Melissa Ohden from Gladstone, MO. Someone intended to scald her to death from the inside out; however, by the grace of God (yes that is with a capital G!) she is more than a statistic because in August of 1977 she survived a failed saline infusion abortion, and was born alive. Two nurses on staff that day found out about her and fought for medical care to be provided to her which saved her life. Also, Gianna Jessen is an Abortion survivor. If you have it in your heart, you can find out about other abortion survivors on the abortionsurvivors.com (the Abortion Survivors Network). I believe them over Planned Parenthood’s claim that they weren’t involved in selling baby body parts. Ephesians 4:18; Matthew 13:14-15; and Isaiah 6:9-10. Yes there is a God!

  • To some narrow minded people it makes a difference what you believe about when life begins because it keeps them from controlling what your conscience tells you and belittling your faith.

  • Nope, I’m not ‘wrong”; I have posted basic biological facts. Your personal feelings, morals, and patriarchal religion have nothing to do with a woman’s physical rights, or her civil rights and liberties.

    So, honey, are all our major mainstream medical organizations, who support access to abortion “wrong”? Are the major global health care organizations–the World Health Organization and the World Medical Association–who work to enlighten developing countries of women’s human rights and the importance of reproductive health care, which includes abortion–“wrong”? Is the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the National Academy of Science, “wrong”? All these medical and science organizations are “wrong” in the face of fundie patriarchal bible humpers? Snort.

  • Same answer to you as to Tapioca, er, Carioca: “Nope, I’m not ‘wrong”; I have posted basic biological facts. Your personal feelings, morals, and patriarchal religion have nothing to do with a woman’s physical rights, or her civil rights and liberties.

    So, honey, are all our major mainstream medical organizations, who support access to abortion “wrong”? Are the major global health care organizations–the World Health Organization and the World Medical Association–who work to enlighten developing countries of women’s human rights and the importance of reproductive health care, which includes abortion–“wrong”? Is the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the National Academy of Science, “wrong”? All these medical and science organizations are “wrong” in the face of fundie patriarchal bible humpers? Snort.”

  • Glad that you are acknowledging God. Yes, God created man in his own image .. male and female… and formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul. This is how Adam and Eve were created. They were the first man and woman, not the first babies. There are many other chapters in the Bible that regard life in the womb as precious, and regard all human life, as well as all new born babies.

  • You are a person who makes a lot of sense; however, many narrow minded people don’t consider you liberal enough.

  • No, sweetie, people’s beliefs are their own. We need to keep people like you from imposing your spurious beliefs as laws over women’s bodies.

  • Honey, I have posted scientific truths. Sweetie, I don’t think I’m ‘superior’ to other human beings. What I do know is that the personal dogma of certain people is irrelevant to a woman’s physical rights.

  • The basic argument you’re making is nonsensical.

    It’s like saying that is quite silly to rant on and on about (pushing old people off bridges, killing defectives, nuking small countries, you fill in the blank) when every single person alive today is going to die, millions upon millions of lives ending monthly.

    What difference does it make if someone decides to (push old people off bridges, kill defectives, nuke small countries, you fill in the blank)? NONE.

    Argument by declaration.

  • Thanks. Sadly, in this political climate, I’ve come to expect people to be angry and unreasonable, especially about abortion. It’s always been a head scratcher to me, but there are people on both sides who’d rather be righteous than reach an understanding.

  • Well, logic is not your strong suit.

    Sweetie, those of you who object to murder, simply don’t have to commit one.

    Sweetie, those of you who object to genocide, simply don’t have to perpetrate one.

    Sweetie, those of you who object to …..

    Yes, and thank you for another blast of your blah blah depository, all equally pointless opinions.

  • No, dear, you silly wombsniffers go off the deep end, wanting to off old people, and people in comas and wheelchairs. Sweetie, embryos reside inside of a woman; old people do not. They are perfectly safe from an individual woman’s medical decision.

  • Re: “you’re wrong”: So, you’re saying that I am just ‘wrong’ about something, but all our national and global medical and science associations are right about the health benefits of abortion? How does that work in your bible-impaired mind, dear?

  • Like I said, the basic argument you made was nonsensical.

    Your response is even more nonsensical.

    You have an opinion. Period.

  • Since I haven’t quote the Bible, or mentioned it, I assume you pulled this out of ….

    You’re wrong.

    How you fit that into “national and global medical and science associations” touting making it legal – NOT its “health benefits” – is not my problem.

  • Re: “I haven’t quote [sic] the Bible”: Another *Big, Big Roll of the Eyes*. Honey, honey, honey–you’re very religious. You have the notion that your own personal idiosyncrasies, er, your “morals”, should be forced up the vaginas of all women.You are free to live your life according to your belief system that you have built around you, and other people are entitled to be free from your idiosyncrasies, er, religious beliefs.

    Re: “Sweetie, you must have missed the text I posted from various health care organizations, stating the health benefits of abortion. For one example:

    The WMA (World Medical Association) recognizes the benefits for women who are able to control their fertility…unwanted pregnancies and pregnancies that are too closely spaced can have a serious adverse effect on the health of a woman and of her children. These adverse effects can include the premature deaths of women. Existing children in the family can also suffer starvation, neglect or abandonment resulting in their death or impaired health, when families are unable to provide for all their children.

  • Honey, it is not “opinion” that old people do not reside inside of a woman. Get a grip, dear.

  • Re: “abortion could become illegal easily”: Nope…abortion is legal throughout enlightened Western Civilization.

    States were legalizing abortion years before Roe vs Wade, which has stood for 45 years. Our medical organizations support safe legal access to abortion as reproductive health care for women. Religious extremists, who desire to strip pregnant women of their basic civil rights, such as the catholic cult, are losing members, not gaining. How absolutely ridiculous that those opposed to abortion, also oppose contraception! It just goes to show that you wombsniffers aren’t concerned about embryos–for whatever weird reasons of your own, you desire to control women’s social behavior, sexuality, and fertility.

    Sweetie, every woman is the “expert” over her own body–not Internet strangers, not religious wingnuts–certainly not “theologians”.

  • Sweetie, you oppose abortion; and you also oppose contraception, which reduces abortion. Honey, you own the word ‘illogical’!

    Abortion is not murder, nor genocide. Abortion is an individual woman’s medical decision.You and others of your ilk demand that women with unintended pregnancies subordinate their entire life plans, and risk sacrificing possibly their very health and lives, to reproduction.

    Women are not forced to donate a kidney, or liver, or other parts of her body to people who are dying for lack of organ donations. Nope. A WOMAN can choose what to do with her body and bodily contents, and that includes removing an embryo if she so desires.

    How weird that you wake up every day, fretting over the pregnancies of total strangers. Don’t have much of a life, honey?

  • You apparently don’t know the difference between ethical and religious, or between philosophy and religion.

    Hope when you’re senile …. which apparently is not far off …. and helpless your care is under someone who is ethical.

    As to “unwanted pregnancies and pregnancies that are too closely spaced can have a serious adverse effect on the health of a woman and of her children”

    – explain in some detail the adverse effect on the health of her children

    – wouldn’t the solution to premature deaths be healthcare, per se?

    – wouldn’t the solution to families being unable to provide for their children assistance in agriculture and industry?

    The World Medical Association is a confederation of associations (including, oddly, the World Veterinary Association) partnered with Bayer Pharmaceuticals, Eli Lilly and Company, GlaxoSmithKline, and Pfizer, Inc. – all purveyors of birth control meds and abortion-related drugs.

    Where could we find the record of deliberations, including considering of alternatives and the ethicals implications of this purported position?

    Or are we just supposed to roll over and play dead because the organization has the word “medical” and is therefore “scientific”?

    Buck v. Bell, 274 U.S. 200 (1927), resulted from a “science-based” law written by Harry Laughlin of the Eugenics Record Office (ERO) at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, and Virginia eugenicist Joseph DeJarnette testified against Buck in the original trial. All “scientists”.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buck_v._Bell

    Most people today find it abhorrent, and it turned out later that Carrie Buck was a woman of normal intelligence.

    Ah, science in lieu of ethics.

    Works every time.

    Reporters and researchers that visited Buck later in life claimed she was a woman of normal intelligence.

    This is the sort of thing that your approach leads to.

    Science, per se, does not speak at all to ethics. It can support ethical considerations, but it is not a substitute for them.

    Trying to use this wrong tool for solving things it cannot is the very definition of scientism.

    Which pretty much wraps up our conversation, eh?

  • Well, I think we’ve wasted enough of each others’ time.

    After reading your “information”, analyzing it, and responding to it I’ve zeroed in on your approach enough to understand it’s neither scientific nor particularly interesting.

    – people who see things your way are “enlightened Western Civilization”

    – people who don’t see things your way are “religious wingnuts” and “wombsniffers”

    – what you call “science” consists of two things, and two things only: personal opinions of folks whose credentials don’t support expertise in ethics or law, which are the relevant required disciplines for weighing the issues to be decided – e.g., a “geologist” opining that “every woman is the ‘expert’ over her own body”; facts – such as the large number of conceptions that are naturally lost – which while true either don’t support an ethical position, or don’t support the position you’re taking

    At the end of the day the routine turns out to be the typical loud, anti-religious, pseudo-scientific, uber-feminist, and inane sloganeering we’ve all been listening to for a half century. The fresh content appears to be nil.

    That’s not interesting enough to keep me in the conversation.

  • Re: “headscratcher”: How can an “understanding” be reached when there are people who demand their noses belong up women’s vaginas, dictating their reproductive health care? As a woman, I find this highly insulting. My body isn’t public property. My uterus is not public property.

  • Understandings are reached between people who are willing to see things from perspectives other than their own. The kind of people you describe wouldn’t qualify. Frankly, I doubt you would either.

  • Re: “explain in some detail the adverse effect on the health of her children”: In light of your belief that women should die along with an inviable fetus in pregnancy and childbirth complications, I’m not surprised that you, a bible-impaired male, would ask such a dumb question that is easily researched, and frankly, is well known among groups of women, such as our own Moxie Moms. Honey, when women can space out their children, they are born with healthier birth weights. If you want further “details”, go the Mayo Clinic, or March of Dimes, or the World Health Organization sites.

    https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/getting-pregnant/in-depth/family-planning/art-20044072

    You’re such a waste of time–which was clearly demonstrated when you were presented with medical statements that abortion was one recommended treatment for pulmonary hypertension, and you absolutely refused to wrap your mind around the fact that doctors know more than you about their pregnant patients.

    Re: “Buck vs Bell”: For some reason you’re comparing involuntary sterilization with a woman choosing to have an abortion? That does not compute. The decision to have children or not have children belongs only to the woman.

    Re: “philosophy and religion….wrong tool”: Honey, I’ll take science any day over people’s superstitious irrational beliefs.

  • Re: “I doubt you would either.”: This is true. The decision to have children or not have children belongs only to the woman. For me, there is no compromise that a woman in the United States of America is entitled to the same civil rights and liberties as males, which includes bodily autonomy, medical privacy, and the right to make one’s own medical decisions.

  • I think you’re confusing understanding and compromise. Understanding doesn’t mean you surrender your values or your position. It just means that you strive to respect those who see things differently and engage in civil dialogue without polemics and without demonizing them.

    I’m moving on. Peace.

  • Re: “required disciplines for weighing the issues to be decided”: Honey, the law states that abortion is legal. Get over it. It’s the 21st Century, not biblical times. Yep, abortion is legal in countries not held hostage by religious fanaticism. Go figure.

    Re: “credentials”: You and Arnsen are so ridiculous. Embryologists/developmental biologists/medical doctors, who state that non sentient evanescent embryos are not “babies”, not “children”, not “human beings”, to you lack “credentials”, when they are, indeed, the experts in reproductive biology.

    Re: “every woman is the ‘expert’ over her own body”: Yep. Do you have the insane notion that YOU, a male, lacking a vagina, uterus, who doesn’t gush blood once a month, or who will never endure an unwanted or complicated pregnancy, is an expert on the bodies of total strangers? Snort. Let me pick myself up off the floor from laughing!

    Re: “anti-religious”: Let me borrow more words from my favorite embryologist:

    “I’m only against religion when it starts to interfere with other things, like telling people they can’t use contraception, or banning abortion, or stopping euthanasia. These bloody religious nuts in Parliament! Nobody else, other than the Catholic Church, ever went around saying a fertilized egg was a human being, and now people are starting to believe it. Authority plays a big role in our beliefs.”–Dr. Lewis Wolpert, evolutionary biologist, author of “The Triumph of the Embryo”:

    I’m a very spiritual person, honey. Nature is my church.

  • “Buck vs Bell” pointed out how “science” does NOT inform ethics.

    Swish! right over your head.

    Then trying to palm off a cautionary preventive in keeping with “don’t get pregnant” as an “emergency” in Phoenix.

    I’ll let you and the World Veterinary Association ride off into the sunset now that you’ve confirmed in spades that our conversation has pretty well wrapped up.

  • Re: “how “science” does NOT inform ethics”: Sweetie, you can’t seem to discern between pseudoscience, e.g. forced sterilization and eugenics, which you are apparently harping on, and real science.

    It is not up to you, or other bible humpers, who should and should not reproduce. Women will decide for themselves.

  • Thank you for your additional slogans, insults, and unsupported declarations.

    I provided the names of the scientists who drafted the law and who testified. People with lesser credentials seem to be “experts” when you agree with them.

    I could have used Alfred Kinsey, or Margaret Sanger, and made the same point.

    On the positive side, you finally recognize science does not inform ethics.

    I realize we’re done, and why, and only hope you will as well, sooner rather than later.

  • **and frankly, is well known among groups of women, such as our own Moxie Moms. Honey, when women can space out their children, they are born with healthier birth weights.**
    Yeah. I learned THAT in 7th grade, when the female mouse owned by the biology teacher started having premature offspring and cannibalizing them, and the teacher said it was because she was having babies too often.
    But apparently fetal fantasizers are carefully protected as children from such unpleasant facts of life, in favor of being taught that plump fat babies pop out in painless puffs of smoke every 9 months.

  • Re: “respect”: Or rather, “lack thereof”. I trained as a clinic escort in the days when it was fisticuffs and blood to get a patient to the door of a clinic that provided abortions. We clinic and patient defenders trained to link our arms to form arches for the patients to duck under to get to the door to enter the clinic through the rabble, er, “believers”.

    Why in the world would I have any “respect” for arrogant, bible-impaired louts, who have the narcissistic hubris to insert themselves into private medical decisions of women, who are considering or resolved to access a LEGAL medical procedure as personal–and again–PRIVATE–as an abortion?

    As a fellow pro-choicer, Barbara Zierle, put it so well: “These uninvited intruders turn a totally quiet, well-studied, well researched, carefully and thoroughly decided PERSONAL procedure into a political, PUBLIC, spectacle that is the business of NO ONE except the woman experiencing it. If any woman is undecided or uninformed and desires advice — there are a million therapists, physicians, libraries, internet sites, family members & friends, support groups ….etc. They certainly do NOT need or want intrusive , usually superstitious, fanatical, under-educated people verbally assaulting them or physically approaching/ harassing them. How much ‘respect’ are given the women who are perfectly intelligent enough to make their own decisions about their own bodies, lives, and futures?”

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