I get your take on the progressive perspective, and I am not surprised to note your lack of sympathy. That’s not a political battle I want to get involved in as, like all political battles, winning is prioritized over debate, as we all know.
‘Taking another’s life’ is obviously a highly contentious view of abortion. But do any of us even recall being born? Would we have suffered if we were aborted? In an ideal world we would not even have to deal with this question. As it is wide open, it does not seem like a good starting place or focal point if we want a result to the debate.
The start of ‘life’ and the supposed ‘rights’ that go with it is a matter of great controversy, just as you state. The idea there is some ‘real’ line-in-the-sand when life begins strikes me as a philosophical nonsense. If that is to be argued about sans fin, there is no possibility of agreement. Society is condemned indefinitely to the ideological can of worms we currently have.
The good thing about debating with you is that you always come out with something I want to challenge:
Most societies and people accept that human life is sacrosanct and that you only have the right to take another person’s life in self defence if that person is directly threatening your life.
I know what you are saying, in that this is the official dogma and seems morally reasoned. But if you look at the reality, people find it very easy to look the other way about atrocious ‘murder’ perpetrated by their own governments — everything from suspect food and drugs to pointless wars on less powerful nations. The Nazis showed just how easily the human mind ignores the conventional idea you voice. We are all suckers for flattery — both from self and from others, and politicians know how to exploit this. But nature is raw and more profound than any such spin. If murder itself knows no morals, then nothing really does. As they say, civility is just a skin.
So less dramatically, many women who really want an abortion will only be tempted into back street clinics if the procedure is made illegal.
None of [this] has anything to do with either religion or economics.
Agreed, as regards the philosophical impossibility of resolving the start-of-life question mentioned above. But given that impossibility, the cultural reality we are in does seem to concern one’s accepted religion/morality, or lack of, and perhaps to a lesser extent, commercial issues of who will pay — laws being obviously the result of all the related arguing amidst competing political agendas.
Much as people talk about ‘human rights’ — a daft concept in my mind — the truth is that there is no agreement about what these are. For example, we are in effect both agreed that the matter is about when the fetus acquires life and its supposed rights, but we are faced with the impossibility of settling such things amongst different people.
So, in effect these supposed ‘human rights’ end up being dictated by politicians, inasmuch as we are constrained by the laws they pass. This is why I have no time for the concept: outside of those laws, the only reality behind the concept of ‘human rights’ is just the PR and spin of those in power trying to tell us they will defend us in the face of a hostile world. There is no more substance to them than the padre telling the dying soldier he has a seat in heaven. It might be comforting to believe that, but kids find it comforting believe in Santa. These ‘rights’ are just Santa for adults. Try getting them respected if you are native to a third world country.
So if you are with me, the mother, the child, and you and I actually have no ‘human rights’. Life is inherently uncertain and unless we survive our experiences and also have enough money to hire a good lawyer, we are at the mercy of the minimalist protection of the police — which is sometimes illusory in itself.
For the these reasons, I have no faith that any laws will sort problems around abortion. There has been a lot of come and go in different countries over the last half century, but all that emerges is the intractability of solving such matters through laws.
The roots of the problem can be traced back to the 60s ‘free love’ ideology, as well as the commercial exploitation that immediately hijacked that mentality. Hence, much as I think the whole matter of abortion is very unfortunate, I am a bit suspicious of the motives behind the conservative anti-abortion movement. All sorts of murder and cruelty are parts of ‘respectable’ society as well as many nationalist policies that such conservatives happily ignore. Why then are they so vociferous on this issue if not as part of a reflexive slap-down-the-left tactic?
Big business effectively sponsored feminist ideology to give us the sex-mad culture that we now have. So why is the business world not under attack, as opposed to the victims it has produced? $$$!
As regards those ‘victims’, note that you do not need to agree with someone’s ideas in order to understand that they are nonetheless victims of external manipulation. As regards the frequent attacks that you, me, Ron, One Tongue Johnny, arthur lecuyer and others make on feminism, there is a point where you can see that the systematic indoctrination and exploitation of minds is the real problem — and it is definitely not all driven by feminists. Power likes confusion among the peons. Or as is said in parts of the UK, where there’s muck there’s brass.
Sorry. I know this reads like a bit of a ramble, but treating issues in isolation seems to me more and more like a failed way of thinking.