Wednesday, January 9, 2008

If They Say...You Say-from the Michigan, USA Right to Life website

ADDRESSING ABORTION

from the Michigan Right to Life website



If they say....You say....




If they say...

Why are you against a woman's right to choose?

You say...

A woman's right to choose what? Ask them to finish their sentence. This will hopefully move the conversation away from the empty rhetoric of "choice." Most everyone is for a woman's right to choose many things - where to work, where to go to school, whom to marry, etc. However, no one should be in favor of the "choice" of abortion because the sole intent of abortion is the death of an innocent human being.

Also, most women don't really "choose" to have abortions. Paying PHP8000 to have someone they've never met before end the life of their unborn child is not something that women freely choose to do. Most women have abortions because they feel they don't have the financial and familial resources to raise a child and feel they have no other options. When those in favor of abortion continually focus and rely on the word "choice," they make a woman's decision to have an abortion sound almost cavalier, like women want to have abortions in the same way that others choose to have chocolate ice cream instead of vanilla. This is horribly misleading and totally ignores the real problems women in unplanned pregnancies face.

Pro-life organizations and people want to offer real solutions to women in unplanned pregnancies.


If they say...

Women should be allowed to control their own bodies and make their own choices about their reproductive lives.

You say...

This argument fails to recognize the scientific reality that a pregnant woman has already reproduced and that the child growing inside of her is not part of her body but a completely different human being with a different body and distinct genetic code. From the moment of conception a new, unique human being is present.

The word "conceive" is actually a synonym for the word "produce." Just because an unborn child is temporarily living inside the womb of his mother and is dependent on her for sustenance doesn't mean that he is part of his mother's body or that he can be killed because he's defenseless and in the way.


If they say...

No one knows when life begins.

You say...

If no one knew when a distinct human being comes into existence or if the unborn are alive, wouldn't that actually be a good reason to make abortion illegal? Because if we're not sure if the unborn are living human beings, then don't women having abortions take the risk of possibly signing the death sentence of a living human being?

Before buildings are imploded, those destroying the building make sure that there are no humans inside or in the near vicinity. A person who claims that it's okay to have an abortion because no one knows when life begins is like a structural engineer thinking it's okay to implode a building before making sure no one is in it. If we're not sure if the unborn are alive then we shouldn't destroy them until we're 100% positive they're not. This is why in the first few days after September 11,2001 workers clearing the wreckage of the World Trade Center in the U.S. used their hands and buckets and not bulldozers because there was the possibility that there could be living human beings underneath.

However, the above argument doesn't really matter because people who take the time to actually try to find out when human life begins will find a ready answer in the scientific field of embryology. Major embryology textbooks and any scientist with the slightest knowledge of prenatal development will testify to the scientific fact that when sperm and egg combine at conception the life of a distinct human being has begun.

How can something be growing and developing and not be alive? What other things grow, develop, mature and are not alive?


If they say...

A fetus may be a human being but it's not a person

You say...

What's the difference between a human being and a human person? Are there other human beings that aren't human persons? Many people who say the unborn aren't persons will have no response to these question or they'll have to think for awhile. This means that they haven't really thought about what they just said. They're saying that the unborn don't deserve to be protected because they're not persons but they don't even know what they consider a person to be. This most likely means that they're just repeating something they've heard over and over again but haven't really thought about.

Any qualifications that disqualify unborn children from the arbitrary realm of personhood, such as self-awareness, consciousness, ability to survive on their own, etc. will also disqualify other human beings like infants, people in reversible comas, those on respirators, etc. These qualifications will also be wholly arbitrary and have no basis in fact. Why should these qualifications be accepted instead of other arbitrary qualifications like height, weight, IQ, skin color, and gender?


If they say...

A fetus is only a potential human being

You say...

An unborn child isn't a potential human being but a human being with a great deal of potential. If an unborn child isn't a human being now, what is it? A fish? A dog? Anything that is potentially something in the future has to be an actual something now. It's a scientific fact that human parents can only produce human offspring. At what time does an unborn child become an actual human being? Why does this stage of development make the unborn an actual human being as opposed to any other stage of development?


If they say...

How can you think that a one-celled zygote, smaller than the dot on the letter "i," is the moral equivalent of a fully-grown woman?

You say...

I believe in an inclusive view of humanity which says all human beings are created equal and deserve the same respect and protection. Human beings deserve to be protected regardless of their size or of the number of cells their bodies are made of. Fully grown adults don't deserve more respect and protection than newborn children simply because they have more cells or have greater mass. This argument is based on the notion that size and ability are what make humans valuable. The value of human life isn't based on our size or what we can or cannot do but rather based on the notion that human beings have intrinsic worth, meaning that humans are valuable because of what we are - humans - and not on what we are currently capable of doing. The life of every human should be respected and protected regardless of size and ability.


If they say...

A zygote doesn't even have a brain or brain waves. Don't we decide that people are dead by their lack of brain function? How can a zygote be alive if it doesn't have anything that resembles a brain?

You say...

There is a difference between not yet and never again. Mature human beings who lack a functioning brain are considered dead because at that stage of development they need a functioning brain to direct their development and to fully integrate their bodies. An early stage embryo, however, does not need a functioning brain to direct its development and integrate itself. An embryo doesn't need a brain to live while more mature humans cannot live without a brain.

We all recognize that other organisms that don't have brains are alive. Are plants and fungi not alive because they don't have brains?


If they say...

Statistics show that abortion is safer than carrying a child to term. Why should women be forced to risk their lives and health if they don't want to?

You say...

If a study came out which showed that women without children were less likely to die from heart disease than women with children, would women with children be justified in killing their kids simply because their lives would be a little safer? This is another argument in favor of abortion that only works if the unborn aren't human beings.

It should also be pointed out that deaths from abortion are commonly under reported or reported under different causes like "ruptured uterus" or "punctured cervix" while deaths from pregnancy are often recorded for the whole nine months of pregnancy, including deaths that might have nothing to do with the pregnancy, like a car accident. In the state of Michigan in the U.S., a girl named Tamia Russell died in January of 2004 from complications after a second-trimester abortion. Even though Tamia's death received a fair amount of media coverage, the Michigan Department of Community Health lists no deaths from abortion in its report on Michigan abortions in 2004.

Abortion advocates like Planned Parenthood claim that abortion is a safe procedure and have even claimed that it is 11 times safer than carrying a pregnancy to term. Even if we accept these statistics they don't prove very much. One statistic which Planned Parenthood uses is the claim that the death rate for abortion is 0.6 per 100,000 procedures. If carrying a pregnancy to term is 11 times more dangerous than abortion that means the death rate for pregnancy is approximately 6.6 deaths per 100,000 pregnancies. Which means if a woman has an abortion, she has a 99.9994% chance of surviving while if a woman carries her pregnancy to term she has a 99.9934% chance of surviving. The difference between these numbers, 0.006%, is not statistically significant, meaning there is no real statistical difference between the two numbers, especially when you consider the variety of variables that affect both abortion and childbirth.


If they say....

But certainly you would allow an abortion for women who have been raped or are victims of incest?

You say....

Rape and incest are horrific crimes and those who commit these crimes should be punished and their victims should be supported. While prolife people abhor the violence of rape, abortion doesn't undo the harm that has been caused. Every unborn child, regardless of how they were conceived, is a living human being who deserves to be protected. The unborn child is the second victim of the crime and shouldn't be treated as if she was the attacker.