Friday, January 4, 2008

More Answers to Silly Pro-Abortion Choice Questions [Serge]


5. Should fertilized eggs and embryos get social security numbers? What benefits should they be entitled to?
Social security numbers are assigned in order to gain some form of benefit for a child. The only benefit that the prenatal human being is looking for is not to be intentionally killed in their mother's womb. Therefore, the answer is no.

6. What responsibilities and legal consequences should pregnant women face? Should Child Protective Services be able to step in if a pregnant woman does something that could potentially damage the fetus — like eat tuna or drink coffee or exercise heavily? What if a woman isn’t pregnant, but makes her body inhospitable to a fertilized egg — say, for example, that she uses birth control, which thins the uterine lining and makes it difficult for a fertilized egg to implant? What if she’s anorexic? Some anorexics may be able to ovulate, but may not be able to sustain a pregnancy, or even have enough nutrients to allow for implantation. Can such a woman be prosecuted or otherwise punished for creating an environment that was deadly for an egg-child? What if a pregnant woman had a miscarriage, and it could be linked to some behavior — going skiing or flying or not eating properly? We already prosecute pregnant women when they use drugs during their pregnancies. If a pregnant woman otherwise does harm to her fetus, should she be prosecuted for child abuse? Neglect? If she miscarries, can she be tried for homicide?

These laws would remain exactly as they are now, except that they would be more consistent. With the obvious exception of legal abortion, we already treat wanted prenatal humans as valuable. We should continue to strive to provide everything that a pregnant mother needs to support her child.

For example, I just performed surgery under IV sedation for a number of young women. If one of them was pregnant, and I gave a medication that would harm their child (such as thalidomide or accutane), I would be held liable for the damage done to the child. If I did so intentionally, I would be help criminally liable for the death of the child. Likewise, men who give their female partners medications in order to cause an abortion are criminally liable for their actions.

The lone exception to this is legal abortion. I cannot give a medication that could harm a prenatal human, but with the mother's consent, a doctor can give a medication that would intentionally kill the same child. This is grossly inconsistent, and would be rectified. As far as the mother goes, any action which did not intend to end the life of her offspring would be of no significance.

7. I’ve asked this one before, but I rarely get a straight answer: If a woman intentionally terminates a pregnancy in a pro-life nation, how much time should she do? If a fetus is a person and a woman intentionally terminates the life of that fetus, should she go to jail? Be up for the death penalty? In almost any other circumstance, a person who intentionally kills another person — or who pays someone to do the killing for them — is prosecuted. Why should women who terminate pregnancies be exceptions? And if women who terminate pregnancies should be excepted because they just don’t know better, should the same hold true for women who intentionally kill their born children? For women who intentionally kill strangers?
I'm surprised that you have not gotten a straight answer, considering that NRO had an entire symposium on this very topic. I have previously answered this question here, but if you do not wish to read the whole thing, I'll even provide a quote:

Second, there is another reason why laws against abortion may be merciful to the mother. Although the number of illegal abortions that occur would probably be less than our pro-abortion choice opponents claim, it seems clear that some would occur. In that case there is a significant chance that women who received an illegal abortion would be at risk for serious medical complications. These complications would be best treated as quickly as possible in almost every case. If the law would mandate serious punishment for women who have illegal abortions, there would be a great disincentive to seeking medical care for any complication. It is reasonable to argue that the care of those who have made the poor decision to kill their child is paramount. Also, it is reasonable to hold the physician who caused these complications to a higher standard and to hold them primarily responsible for the injury.
Knowing that illegal abortions may occur, and that women would be harmed if they did not seek medical care for them, I believe it is best not to provide a disincentive for care by threatening prosecution. Is there anything wrong with this?

8. If a fetus is entitled to use a woman’s body to sustain its own life, should we begin researching other ways for humans to share bodily functions? It could save lives, after all. If, say, my kidneys fail and there is a way that you and I can be physically attached for about a year, can I can use your body to clean out my own? Sure, it will mean that you will be less physically mobile, it’ll require you to take time off of work, it will significantly alter your health, and getting me off of you when I’m ready will require you to go through a long and expensive process which re-defines the meaning of pain, but if a fetus has those rights, why don’t I?
You can read my article in the Christian Research Journal regarding this question.

I'll get to 9-12 when I have a chance.


  1. Social security numbers are assigned in order to gain some form of benefit for a child. The only benefit that the prenatal human being is looking for is not to be intentionally killed in their mother's womb. Therefore, the answer is no.

    Sometimes it's to gain a benefit for the parents, such as a tax deduction. I would have no problem assigning a tax ID number and offering a tax exemption to the parents of an unborn child -- they have expenses related to the raising of that child, such as prenatal care.

  2. Great answers! :)

    I answered these on Feministe and was really ready to throw up by the nonsense I got in return. It was horrible. If you feel like wading into a cesspool, go ahead - they could use it.

    I will link to these in my posts about them, if you don't mind.


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