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Title: Wanted: Some intellectual consistency on abortion
Source: Washington Examiner
URL Source: https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/ ... ectual-consistency-on-abortion
Published: Mar 10, 2019
Author: Kylee Zempe
Post Date: 2019-03-10 21:11:46 by Gatlin
Keywords: None
Views: 87
Comments: 3

Libertarians and the Left have long advocated for keeping morals out of politics. But when it comes to abortion, that position just doesn’t hold up.

The abortion debate is very different now from what it once was. It has been advanced recently by the appointment of Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, New York’s unrestricted full-term abortion law, infanticidal remarks by Virginia's governor and attempts in Richmond to enshrine abortion as a right up to the very moment of birth.

What's more, politicians and doctors are no longer unsure about the science, as they were in the day of Roe v. Wade. Nor are the Left and the Right squabbling over a woman’s access to contraceptives; they are instead fighting about full- term, third-trimester abortion bills and even whether or not already born babies’ lives can be terminated, or simply neglected, after they are born alive.

This isn’t an exaggeration. On Feb. 25, Senate Democrats, including all six high-profile 2020 presidential hopefuls, blocked the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, a bill intended to ensure that babies born after surviving botched abortions receive medical care. Note that this isn't even an abortion question, properly speaking.

Most Republicans oppose legal abortion in most cases, and most Democrats support it. Sixty percent of Independents think abortion should be legal in all or most instances, according to a 2018 Pew Research survey. But this isn’t the only concerning plight. While vociferous pro-abortion activists who “stand with Planned Parenthood” present their own problems, at least we know where they stand. Their priorities begin and end with “women’s reproductive rights.” Of deeper concern are the passive pro-choicers who call themselves “moderates.”

These tend to be conscience-pricked Democrats, libertarians and non-religious Republicans. They’re middle-of-the-road on abortion, and they are quiet on the issue. Though I’ve engaged in many versions of this “hands-off” conversation, the predictable rationale for the half-hearted argument they offer: "I would never personally have an abortion, but I would never dictate another woman’s choice." This argument was recently articulated by writer Annie Reneau in an Upworthy article entitled, “It is possible to be morally pro-life and politically pro-choice at the same time.”

This sounds like music to a libertarian's ears: non-aggression and small government. It’s appealing for blue dog Democrats: self-righteousness without ostracization from an increasingly progressive party. It’s easy for weak conservatives, especially on college campuses: No need to defend a controversial position. It makes everybody happy, no?

Defenders of this belief can appeal to a number of rationalizations for what amounts to a morally and politically convenient position. Some babies, if born, will suffer neglect; there are too many gray areas; criminalization of abortion doesn’t make it go away; I don’t want the government telling people what to do.

Some of these lines hardly merit engagement. But that last reason, the “hands- off” argument, creates a unique paradox. Libertarian ideals are based on the premise that government should leave individuals alone so long as those individuals are not infringing on the rights of another. This rationale holds up for many issues, such as the typical drug legalization debate, for instance. The substances you put into your own body are your choice, you weigh the risks and benefits, consciously or not, and live with the consequences, good or bad.

In true libertarian fashion, one's actions become the concern of the government or another person only when they begin to interfere with his or her rights. Smoke weed to your heart’s content, but when you drive under the influence and hit a pedestrian in your impaired mental state, your actions are no longer lawful. You reserve no right to deprive an innocent person of his or her rights.

But, this paradigm does not apply when it comes to infanticide or even just abortion. Abortion necessarily deprives the rights of an innocent third party in every single case. Of the more than 50 million abortions since Roe, not one has never been performed in which only the mother’s rights were in question.

If you are in this fickle “morally pro-life and politically pro-choice” demographic, you have embraced the intellectual equivalent of standing on the sidelines. You still have a choice to make. Your decision not to seek an abortion for yourself does not make you pro-life. or pro-choice; it just makes you pro-abortion for other people.

If you still think that a fetus is just a clump of cells, your head is in the sand as regards modern science, going back to the discovery of DNA. On the other hand, if you understand that a fetus is a living human organism, and you still willfully choose not to protect it, you are not “morally pro-life and politically pro-choice.” You are simply a moral coward.

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#1. To: Gatlin (#0)

Libertarians and the Left ...

blah, blah blah.

buckeroo  posted on  2019-03-10   21:17:31 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  

#2. To: Gatlin (#0)

aborTion is

a million Times worse

Than slavery

mosT slaves

we're wined - dined

compared To chopped up - murdered

you would Think

afTer 50 million

people would wake up


If you ... don't use exclamation points --- you should't be typeing ! Commas - semicolons - question marks are for girlie boys !

BorisY  posted on  2019-03-10   23:12:00 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  

#3. To: BorisY (#2) (Edited)

Spot on, Boris.

During the last forty years, there have been any number of prominent pro-life activists, judges, and politicians who have repeatedly invoked the history and legacy of slavery in America to illuminate the main aspects of contemporary abortion politics.

Thank you for joining with them to once again bring this analogy to the forefront and it is my fervent hope that we can at some near future date look back with the same passionate intensity to view abortion as we view slavery today.

Gatlin  posted on  2019-03-11   2:36:02 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  

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