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View Diary: My Response to Moiv's Abortion/Katrina Diary (64 comments)

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  •  Thank you OC for pulling the discussion (4.00)
    away from stare decisis and all the rest.

    What needs to be constantly pointed out is that overturning Roe or any number of other measures won't end abortion, they will just kill and maim women. By returning to the old days.

    It is a woman's choice.

    If someone wants to reduce the number of abortions, they should shut up and get behind expanding sex ed and family planning efforts.

    -7.88, -7.74 In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies but the silence of our friends.

    by melvin on Tue Oct 18, 2005 at 11:32:01 PM PDT

    •  you know what? (4.00)
      If you ask my 12 year old classmate who grew up in a white Republican Catholic upper middle class suburb of Chicago and didn't have enough to put in a training bra yet - I'm sure she'd have something to tell you that she learned in church that sounds something similar to what the AFA idiot told me the other day about that.  It's easy to have all of life's answers when you've experienced nothing.

      The thing about abortion is that we hear the extreme other side.  They are loud and shrill.  But I think there's a middle.  I think the majority of people realize that they are human and the women who seek abortions are only human too.

      I think the real questions start here.  They don't start with the nutcases holding up pictures of fetuses next to weather imaging of Hurricane Katrina.  I hope people do really jump in and talk about this.

      •  I think you're right. (4.00)
        There's a middle and we don't know where it is because the voices are so loud on the edges.  Particularly one edge.  But anyway.

        My best friend is an evangelical Christian who is in many, maybe most, ways politically liberal.  But she considers herself "pro-life."  When I say this is my best friend, I mean that I'm the only person she called while she was on her honeymoon.  I tell her things I don't tell anyone else.  But this conversation is too scary for us to have very clearly or directly.  

        I don't even know what she means by "pro-life"!  When her younger sister's friend was pregnant by a guy who'd treated her badly (the relationship started with date rape and went on from there), my friend asked me for advice on what her sister should do for her friend.  Gingerly, I asked what kind of option she'd want.  Abortion was the answer.  So I helped find a clinic and such.  

        I know a lot of people who claim they're pro-life make exceptions for people close to them.  But I don't believe, I really don't, that my friend would deny others what she facilitated for her friends.  So I don't know what she means by pro-life, and it's too hard to ask.  My best guess is that she'd support a lot of restrictions but not making it illegal.  But the fact that this is the big thing we can't talk about when we talk about everything else, that's a sad, scary thing.  It shows how polarizing this issue has become in places where it doesn't need to be.

        •  why does it always have to be about law? (4.00)
          Why does it have to do with restricting access? Does that prevent abortion?  And what about when you DO prevent abortion?  Now a woman who didn't want a child and possibly can't take care of it has a kid.  Great.

          This debate is SO not a zero-sum game and I wish people got that.

          Maybe by pro-life your friend could agree that it would be best to education people comprehensively about sex and birth control, and to make birth control readily available.

          Maybe your friend would agree that by expanding the middle class, more women who find themselves unexpectedly pregnant can feel confident they can provide for their child should they choose to have it.

          Whoever framed the debate here in terms of overturning Roe v. Wade was a dipshit.

          •  absolutely right. (4.00)
            These are all things we agree on.  And she would vote for a candidate who supported the legality of abortion - along with education about and availability of contraception, expanding the middle class, and other progressive issues - over one who did none of these things.

            But because the debate is framed, not just here but everywhere, in terms of pro and anti, for or against, it becomes difficult to introduce the topic at all in ways that allow us to establish our points of agreement.  So you're right, but it's a substantial re-framing task...

            •  Spot on (none)
              But because the debate is framed, not just here but everywhere, in terms of pro and anti, for or against, it becomes difficult

              Exactly....the extremes are not the majority on this issue and the frame muddies the picture so ridiculously that it has become almost undebateable on the reality of it in the public spectre.  The media is as much to blame as the fundies for that bullshit.

              I would consider myself pro-life if the term actually held literal value as being in favor of not having an abortion over having one as opposed to "abortion is of the devil and anyone who has one is going to hell".   On the other hand I'm vehemently pro-choice....I say "on the other hand" because of the frame...which is bullshit.   I have personal qualms with abortion but not in a black and white type of way but simply a religious belief type of way that the frames completely fuck to all hell and back.  The god I believe in doesnt mandate that every situation is the same nor should my own personal religious beliefs be imposed on others.

              If someone wants to get an abortion then that should be up to them entirely.   If I were in that situation then it would be a difficult time with me and the girl because I know this is a gray area from top to bottom with me....and her decision would be the one that mattered in the end.

              Those who make this a black and white issue (in respect to wrong vs. right) disgust me (and show their hand of complete lack of intellectual and moral capacity).

              George W. Bush, Resign NOW.

              by tlh lib on Wed Oct 19, 2005 at 12:52:41 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  i went off on a fundie last week (none)
                This guy was living a lie.  Sooo much written about him last week in my diary if you want details.  Eight kids.  Lawyer.  Flying first class.  At first he didn't want to give me the time of day (FYI: I look like I'm about 16 and I was sitting up in First dressed like a slob).

                Anyhow, he called our "side" Pro-Abortion.  Oh, I went off on him.  I'd been pretty polite until then.  I was still polite.  I pissed him off though because I bet him I couldn't make a bunch of statements about abortion that he agreed with.  I won.

                I said that I'd never wish an abortion on anyone.  I wouldn't.  I wouldn't wish an unwanted pregnancy on them either though.  But aside from the moral issue - who the hell can afford time off work, the money for the abortion and travel there, emotional trauma, pain, and all else that comes along with it.  Would I want someone to have to go through that? HELL NO.  There is no "pro-abortion" - unless you count Tom DeLay.  Oh shit, I shoulda brought that up to that fat hypocrite.

                •  money quote (none)
                  "This guy was living a lie."

                  They all are, honey. They all are.

                  "People seem not to see that their opinion of the world is also a confession of their character."--Ralph Waldo Emerson

                  by rioduran on Wed Oct 19, 2005 at 01:20:37 AM PDT

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                •  I'll admit that (none)
                  I've been pro-abortion in my words many times....and Tom Delay is only the tip of the iceberg of abortions I've verbally wished for.....of course....laws prohibit speech that goes about that in other ways so......I'll leave it at that.   :-)

                  The pro-abortion thing is just absurd...glad you called him on people even realize they're just walking talking points when they say shit like that?   They can't seriously think they could say that and actually defend it do they?

                  OTOH...I got this link in a comment in MOIV's diary to a site that linked to this site where women who have had abortions post their stories to give support to other women thinking about it....

                  I'm sorry but this story makes me ill.  I'll refrain from commenting further as I'd fill a few paragraphs if I were to rant on the utter inanity, hypocrisy, and both sides the mouth talking that this account includes.   It's stories like these that make me cringe as we continue to make abortion a major issue......and I cringe because it's only a major issue because we play into their extremist game and do as they do in making it a black/white issue in the debates.

                  I DO support a woman's choice as the ultimate end game of this whether I think it was the best decision or a display of her ultimate selfishness and vanity.   But this account seriously makes me ill.


                  Missy's Story

                  I had an abortion five days ago. I am a mother of a 3 year old little girl. I have been with my fiance for a year. He is not my daughter's biological father but in every respect he is her daddy. I took a pregnancy test a few weeks ago though I did not need the test to know I was pregnant being pregnant before I knew the signs. Before I took the test I knew that an abortion was the best answer for us.

                  Though my fiance at first said there was no way he could let me do it. We are in the process of buying our first home and, the pregnancy would put buying a house off for a few more years. I want our daughter to have a back yard, a swing set, grow up in a home not an apartment. So when I explained all this to my fiance as we can make our daughter's life better or live here with 2 kids he finally agreed.

                  So I made the appointment - at first I choose medical abortion but after reading up on it, I changed my mind. I decided I would rather leave the clinic knowing it was over rather than having to wait in some cases a few weeks.

                  I have read many story's from women who have had an abortion and, I can't believe some of the clinics out there. I was never treated like just another number I recieved counseling before the procedure and, it was even offered to my fiance. The doctor was very friendly even joking. That may sound harsh but he was joking about stocks not the procedure and, it helped to lighten the procedure.I had a support person with me the whole time who helped me through it by telling me when I was halfway through and telling me I was doing good.

                  In the recovery room there was 3 nurses who acted like their main focus was making sure I was comfortable and doing okay. I was given aftercare instructions before and after. Since I choose to have Valuim before I was told to have someone else drive me home and, they made sure I did. I was also told things to watch for that might indicate an infection and given a 24 hour number to call for problems or to talk to someone.

                  This is not something I ever felt I could choose for myself. I have gone with 2 friends as a support person when they have had an abortion and, our friendship has ended soon after because, I never could forgive them for their choice. Now looking back I want to tell them I am sorry and, wish I could have been a better friend to them. It wasn't an easy decision for either of them and, it wasn't for me either.

                  Because...well....even though they were baby killers when they did it I must apologize now because the threat of not being able to actually own our own home for a few more years put it into proper perspective for me and now they are no longer baby killers.

                  The audacity of someone to actually post that apology after saying that her abortion was based on buying a home is unbelievable to me.   Just unreal.

                  I am so lucky for my daughter - being with her is so hard to be sad with the love she gives me. I know I made the right choice for my family and, I hope someone will read this and know that this is not a selfish decision to make

                  Um.   You had an abortion in order to not put off buying a house.

                  Great that you had the choice but you sound like a fuckwit to me.

                   but, quite the opposite if we feel we are not ready for a child or, like in my case another child, then this is the right choice. I will always feel sadness for what I have done but, I also feel relief that as a family we have the choice to move on and, better our life for our daughter.

                  August 2004

                  Right.  Trust me.  They have ample accounts to use against us that make the arguement look foolish....They're wrong because the choice isn't something that should be debateable.....But the fact that most on the pro-choice side sit back and defend every abortion no matter the principle is absurd to me.  Yeah they have a choice...and yes they should have a choice....but some of them are just goddamned stupid choices based on nothing more than selfishness and vanity to avoid inconvenience as this account portrays.  That's not something to brag about as the site which the commenter in MOIV's diary pointed out somehow thinks is worthy's downright disgusting imo.

                  I'll probably get troll rated for this since some people here are as trigger happy on this issue as Freepers are to the "pro choice" argument....but if wer'e going to be intellectually honest....take the facts as they are and go from there.

                  I look forward to reading Moiv's response diary without a doubt.

                  George W. Bush, Resign NOW.

                  by tlh lib on Wed Oct 19, 2005 at 01:40:58 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  tom delay (none)
                    i do owe you the exact context of my remark - in case not everyone here listens to as much al franken as i do.

                    Tom delay supports the laws in Saipan that make it possible for women to be basically indentured servants in sweatshops (or sex workers) and they are forced to have abortions if they get pregnant.  THAT is being pro-abortion.

                    •  Wow (4.00)
                      I'll have to search that out and read up on it.  

                      Some days I feel like my outrage meter has turned into a nuclear fuckin bomb.  I think today might be about to qualify.

                      George W. Bush, Resign NOW.

                      by tlh lib on Wed Oct 19, 2005 at 01:56:29 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

        •  There was a NYT article (none)
          on an abortion clinic in Arkansas a few weeks ago (sorry, no link). One woman interviewed who was getting an abortion said she's pro-life but this was different.

          Orange C is right, it's hard to be extremist about real and concrete things. Good diary. I'd like to know more about exactly the kinds of questions listed here, and moiv would be the person to write it.

        •  My take on this (none)
          But I don't believe, I really don't, that my friend would deny others what she facilitated for her friends.  So I don't know what she means by pro-life, and it's too hard to ask.

          I sometimes think that it's just a matter of expressing very, very strong disapproval of abortion to many so-called "pro-lifers."  People like the idea of having the law reflect their personal values & beliefs-- it's like the ultimate validation, with the possible exception of the afterlife-- while rarely considering the practical consequences should such laws be enacted.  That's where we get the apparent inconsistency of a majority that wants Roe vs. Wade to stand while at the same time complaining about people actually getting abortions.

          Of course, my broader theory is that people in general, and conservatives in particular, like the idea of liberty but are fundamentally uncomfortable with the exercise of it, and that's especially true wrt this topic.

          Compromise is something you do behind the scenes. Stop doing it in public. -Atrios

          by latts on Wed Oct 19, 2005 at 07:51:38 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Ethics and Mother Nature (none)
        The way pro-criminalization people would figure it, I had an "abortion of convience". Meaning, the pregnancy was unplanned, I was/am married, finances could have been worked out (if it turned out we needed money, relatives would have helped). If I had let nature take its course, I could be a grandmother right now. But, no. I had an IUD (it failed); we had already decided "no kids now", which got revised to "no kids"; abortion, then tubes tied, and I'm starting menopause.

        I have read opinions that elective abortions are "ethically suspect". Well, that's arguable, ... and then some. OtOH, is it ethically suspect to accept systemic discrimination? Biology is, by definition, sexist. Human females are biologically assigned to expend energy towards the next generation whereas human males are not likewise biologically forced. Women can get pregnant from rape. That's a Problem right up there with the Problem of Evil.

        So ethics, in the special case of pregancy, is between a rock and a hard place. Nature likes gender roles. Nature enforces gender roles in a big way. Humans come along and we're self-aware. As an individual, I don't want to cooperate with Nature's plans; I want to make my own choice.

        This is the only ethical solution I can think of that doesn't discriminate: If a culture accepts that "life" does not begin until a pregnant woman accepts the potential child, then men and women may be equal, if the culture is not otherwise sexist (such as restricting access to birth control, etc.) I can't think of any other "compromise" that isn't some variation of "separate but equal" or "some people are more equal than others".

        If someone appeals to biology -- that I killed something that would have been a person (probably)  -- that person is asking me to accept that I am inherently inferior. A "community" decision about reproductive choices -- even looking for a "middle" -- is saying nature has made women inferior to men. I won't accept that*, not without some socially acceptable compromise what makes up for nature's sexual discrimination.

        * Well, pragmatically, I am resigned that there will be laws and restrictions, via votes & politics & other community-type actions. I'm not opposed to medical standards, if those standards are patient-focused, not politically decided. If someone was pressuring me to change my mind, I think I would answer, "Do you want men and women to be equal? For the sake of women's equality, I need to ask you to pretend that there isn't another potential life involved."

        10 Apr 2003 WH spokesman Ari Fleischer declares: "... That is what this war was about and it is about. And we have high confidence [WMD] will be found."

        by julifolo on Wed Oct 19, 2005 at 01:29:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  asdf (none)
          Well, pragmatically, I am resigned that there will be laws and restrictions, via votes & politics & other community-type actions. I'm not opposed to medical standards, if those standards are patient-focused, not politically decided.

          Talk about hitting the nail on the head.  And I see this again and again and again.

          In WI there's some law in the works that will require the doctor to lie to the patient.  Does that make sense?  No.  Are you shocked and horrified?  Probably.

          The law wants to require docs to tell their pts that the fetus can feel pain after a certin # of weeks (I forget how many).  The catch is?  It's not true.

          Nice job.  Make a woman who is already making a difficult decision feel worse because she's hurting her unborn baby - when she isn't.

          •  Assembly Bill 321 (none)
            Yes that Wisconsin bill is this one, Assembly Bill 321:

            Controversy sparks over bill requiring abortion doctors to inform women of fetal pain

            The hopeful news is if it does get out of committee and gets passed, the governor up there might veto it. He just vetoed another bill that was anti-reproductive rights.

            Governor Jim Doyle Vetoes Assembly Bill 207 - Legislation Would Have Allowed Medical Professionals to Deny Care Based on Their Own Ideological Beliefs.

            I'm not in Wisconsin and don't know much about the governor  but he certainly seems, upon quick glance, to be standing up for reproductive rights. If you're in Wisconsin remember him next time election day rolls around.

            •  I am in WI (none)
              I think Doyle typically vetoes this shit.  It's pretty routine around here.  Repugs find some bad legislation, everyone goes nuts, and Doyle's just like "Settle down guys, I'll veto it."  So the only time you need to worry usually is when they could override the veto.
          •  That doesn't surprise me (none)
            I suppose if you said that to the people writing the legislation they would say that it is the scientists that are lying. But it is forcing the doctor to lie, if the doctor "believes" otherwise.

            Pain? What about food animals? I tried being a vegetarian once because the thought of what happens to factory animals, but I didn't succeed.

            Without reproductive choice, women can't be equal. If there's any Middle, I want it working with doctors, not politicians, ... and the criteria has to be about a woman's choices, not something for voting and majority decisions.

            I believe life begins a pregnant woman accepts the potential child. Wanting a "community" decision is saying some people should be more equal than others.

            by julifolo on Wed Oct 19, 2005 at 08:46:16 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  pain - it's a scientific judgment (none)
              I mean, up to a certain point in development, the nerve structure to feel pain just ain't there.  I wouldn't be so opposed to finding out when a fetus can feel pain and educating a woman honestly but can you imagine ANY other circumstance when the government would make providers lie and some of the population would support it?

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