Unworthy of Life

Discussion in 'Ethics, Morality, & Justice' started by SetiAlpha6, Sep 26, 2021.

  1. Vociferous Valued Senior Member

    No idea why you keep reading things as "hot-tempered," etc. C'est la vie. Probably just ham-fisted attempts to poison the well. Most posters here are solidly on your side, man. No need to fret.
    There's a difference between human life, a member of the species homo sapiens, and living human tissue. The organism can survive with a remarkable amount of damaged or missing tissue. Animate, living matter as opposed to inanimate, non-living matter.
    Children cannot develop without the assistance of providing food, water, shelter, etc. for many years. Your point?
    The wall of the blastocyst is one cell thick except in one area, where it is three to four cells thick. The inner cells in the thickened area develop into the embryo, and the outer cells burrow into the wall of the uterus and develop into the placenta.
    You were saying?
    Egg and sperm joining does not instantly become new human DNA, unless you really think humans can have 46 chromosomes. On the fifth day after conception, the new genome takes over development, after the maternal transcripts have been depleted. Don't take my word for it. Look it up for yourself.
    It doesn't "gain" anything, much less your latest ham-fisted straw man of personhood. It simply starts to develop as a new human life.
    Do children have all the human rights of an adult human? Obviously not, because that's just a reducio ad absurdum. The baby has no say in its conception, but the mother generally had some say in it. Why should the choice of one human require the death of another? Because it became accepted or the new norm? Slavery was once the norm too. Should we have kept that too? It also allowed some humans to decide if other humans should live or die, deciding who was property and who were persons. And all because choices the slaver made, not any the slave had a hand in. I say those slaves had human rights, regardless of the accepted norms. The moral difference is that an objective standard valuing human life is a safeguard against just such subjective definitions of persons.
    Most women know the risks of having sex, but they also know that, if they fail to routinely take the pill, don't demand the use of a condom, and don't use an emergency contraceptive, they can always resort to abortion. You know, as an emergency emergency contracep (oops, forgot the Plan B), an emergency contrac (oops, forgot to take a pill yesterday), as a contraceptive. That's at least three choices, to have sex, to not be responsible with contraception (if at all), and not use emergency contraception in a timely manner (if at all).
    Newborn babies still require other people for their survival, and if you're the parent, you can face criminal charges for failing to provide care, even without your permission. Imagine that. How does a 1-5 year prison sentence and up to a $3,000-10,000 fine compare to 9 months of freedom? That sure starts to sound like the newborn baby has more legal rights, even if abortion were completely banned.
    Yes, egg, sperm, and fertilized egg are not members of the species homo sapiens. A zygote certainly has all the contributing DNA, but until it is developing under the direction of its own new genome, it is only a combination of living human tissue, not a member of the species (any more than a wart is). Human tissue to human life, not "other than human" to human life. Once it is a unique organism, it is alive and a member of a species. If that species isn't homo sapiens, it's an absurd claim. Probably asking too much, but can you see how you twisted my claim? I said something other than human developing from human DNA and you twisted that into the straw man a zygote is something other than human. A wee bit of intellectual honesty please.
    I had already told Bells, and now I have repeatedly told you.
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  3. Vociferous Valued Senior Member

    Living human tissue is not the same as a human life, a member of the species homo sapiens. Are you claiming your kidney is itself a member of the species homo sapiens? Miscarriage is not intentionally killing a human life, but I'd challenge you to try telling the grieving woman that it didn't have the same value.
    People who are brain dead have no further possibility of sustaining human life. Usually in less than an hour after ceasing a ventilator the heart will stop. And even on a ventilator, some bodily functions can only continue for about a week. Very different from a baby in the womb.

    Did you mention any?
    So...your life would have value, even if your weren't alive? How's that work?
    No, just pointing out your appeal to authority.
    Then by all means, refute them with the "scientific definition." You know, if there really are different definitions that refute what I've given. Go ahead. We'll wait.
    Homo sapiens specifies modern humans (of which we are talking about with regard to modern abortion laws), but it's an irrelevant distinction to my argument. IOW, only a red herring.
    Abortion takes place in philosophy? I'm sure you meant the "abortion debate" takes place in philosophy. Yes, I can see why you'd want to avoid biology and facts in favor of squishy, subjective stuff like personhood.
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  5. billvon Valued Senior Member

    You are exactly correct. And a human life is not the same as a person, as the example of someone who is brain dead demonstrates.
    Nope. Nor is an egg cell or a zygote.
    And someone who is faced with the decision to pull the plug on a braindead loved one feels the same sort of grief. That's natural.
    Exactly. And a six week old embryo has no further possibility of sustaining human life once life support is withdrawn. The two are quite similar.
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  7. Vociferous Valued Senior Member

    Well, you can count yourself among slavers who also used their own subjective definition of "person" to deprive humans of their rights and lives.
    A fetus is more like a slave than the brain dead, as the two have the possibility for many more years of life.
    Good. At least you understand that distinction.
    The difference is that you'd be a complete asshole to tell the woman her lost baby didn't have the same value, and softening the blow of the inevitable by telling a family that their loved one has already moved on.
    You completely missed the point. The embryo can continue to develop and live many years, the brain dead cannot. Assuming they are the same, by way of the superficial similarity of support, to justify killing one that would not otherwise die, is intellectually dishonesty, at best.
  8. billvon Valued Senior Member

    You can try if you like - but surely you have better insults than that! That one was pathetic.
    Nope. Remove a brain dead person from life support - or a fetus from life support - and they die. They have no INDEPENDENT life.

    Remove someone who is a slave from their environment and they are still 100% people.
    [quoteThe difference is that you'd be a complete asshole to tell the woman her lost baby didn't have the same value[/quote]
    Exactly. And you'd also be a complete asshole to tell the family of a braindead loved one that they had no value.
    Oh, the braindead can live many years as well. A braindead child can even keep growing. But again - for both of them, they are not independent life, nor are they persons. Remove them from life support, and they die.
  9. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Until it is born a fetus is more like a parasite than anything else.
    Even after it is born it is totally dependent on the mother for a number of years, until it learns to survive on its own.
    All other species that require a similarly long gestation and dependence period are on the decline.
    OTOH humans are on the increase and require more and more natural resources to survive.
    By natural standards, man is an "invasive species" and replace native species where they settle.
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2021
  10. Bells Staff Member

    Oh look, you're gaslighting again. How strange and unusual!
    You're still not responding to what I am actually saying. You are literally inventing an argument to respond to. Perhaps you should address my actual point.
    Consenting to sex, does not mean she's consenting to months and months of her body being used against her will.

    I honestly cannot understand how this is so difficult for you to understand!

    What baby?

    How and why does the woman's rights suddenly become less?

    Why would I? I'm not American.

    And your pro-life link doesn't actually say they provide financial help, but instead link to organisations such as church groups and Medicaid..

    None of which pay the rent and address the rest of the costs of living.

    And once again, the father is still absolved of all responsibility during this and the burden remains hers.

    What part of this don't you understand yet?
    Why do you keep telling me about how you love to have sex with women or that you like women who like to have sex? Perhaps you should save that for your tinder account. No one here actually cares. Secondly, you're still forgetting the main crux of this discussion.

    Forcing a woman to be pregnant against her will is abusive and is a denial of her human rights. You have yet to address why the human rights of her blastocyst/zygote/embryo/foetus trumps her human rights.

    I really don't give a shit about whether you think she's responsible or not. You have reminded us more than enough times how you view women. That's on record.
    Did you not read the link?

    If a man's pregnant partner seeks to have an abortion, the father's consent isn't legally required; a woman may choose to terminate a pregnancy against the father's objections. The legal reasoning for this is twofold, based on a woman's right to privacy in her medical decisions, and the fact that the mother is more directly affected by pregnancy.

    The Supreme Court has found laws requiring a spouse's consent for an abortion to be unconstitutional. In Planned Parenthood v. Danforth, the Court reasoned that a husband's refusal to consent would in effect veto a woman's choice to terminate a pregnancy. While both prospective fathers and pregnant women have an interest in the decision, when the two disagree, only one partner's position can prevail. According to the Court, since the woman actually carries the pregnancy, "the balance weighs in her favor," preventing the husband from vetoing her choice.
    If the father's consent isn't required to abort a fetus, does he have a legal right to be notified before it happens? What if state lawmakers pass a law that says a married woman must inform her husband before she has an abortion?

    The Supreme Court addressed this question in Planned Parenthood v. Casey and found that such a law was unconstitutional. While most women discuss an abortion with their partners, those who don’t were much more likely to be in abusive relationships, according to the Court. The Supreme Court saw spousal notification requirements as placing an undue burden on women who may fear for their safety, or that of their children.

    Why did you misrepresent it to such an extent? Reading the passage you quoted in full, it comes to a completely different conclusion to what you just tried to convey:

    Private Agreements Between Partners
    Remember that a father may be able to come to agreement with his pregnant partner outside of the court system if he would like her to keep the baby. If a prospective mother seeks to abort a pregnancy against a father's wishes, an attorney may be able to draft an agreement where the father agrees to pay the costs of pregnancy and obtain full custody after birth.

    There's no legal requirement there. It's just a private agreement. The agreement is still fully dependent on the woman's decision. He gets no say in the matter and he can simply not pay a cent if he chooses not to. In other words, he's under no legal obligation, while she bears the full responsibility.

    I mean, I get that you're a dishonest hack, but come on dude! This is bad even for you.
    Which begs the question why you feel that women should have no right to have an abortion.
    You're the one that keeps veering all over the place and contradicting yourself. You tell us when you think human life begins.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2021
  11. Bells Staff Member

    Once again, the morning after pill can function in 3 ways. Delay ovulation, delay the sperm and/or essentially make the uterus inhospitable. The egg is fertilised in the fallopian tube. It normally takes 5 days or so to travel down to the uterus. How the morning after pill functions will depend solely on when she takes it in her cycle. If she has already ovulated, and she's had sex and she's taken it 1-5 days or so after she's had sex (it's recommended to take anywhere from next day to within 5 days), that fertilised egg, according to pro-lifers like you, is "life" and "a baby". The hope is that it makes the uterus inhospitable, but again, this depends completely on when she's taken the pill (depending on the type she's taken or used) and where she is in her cycle when she's taken it. Making the uterus inhospitable so the fertilised egg can't implant is rarely successful (for example, the doctor can also prescribe mifepristone followed by a prostaglandin tablet(s) that can essentially induce the period). But again, it depends on where she is in her cycle when she's had unprotected sex and can make her quite ill in the process .

    Do you understand now? You're looking at it from the standpoint that she's taken it before she ovulates. That's not always the case and every woman is different and every cycle is different. Some women have longer cycles, some shorter and some are irregular as all hell. And contrary to what you may believe or understand, women do have sex after ovulation as well.

    The morning after pill is only around 85% effective. It's effectiveness depends wholly on when the woman takes it and where she happens to be in her cycle. If she takes it after she's already ovulated, then it's effectiveness goes down quite a bit to basically being nil.

    You started ovulating before you took the pill

    Emergency birth control is all about timing. It's recommended that you take the pill as soon as you can—if you wait too long, you might miss the window during which the pill can be effective.

    If you take it right after sex, it can prevent you from ovulating if you haven’t started already (1). If you have sex on at the time you ovulate or after you ovulate, your emergency contraception pill won’t be effective (7).

    If you have unprotected sex again after you take the pill in the same cycle, it could also fail (7).

    Then of course it's effectiveness is also dependent on the woman's body type and size, as well as any other medication or herbal tablets/remedies she may be on.

    And if she puts it up for adoption, none at all. The greater burden remains on her, adoption or no adoption.
    Again, she bears the full burden throughout the pregnancy..
    Where did you debunk this? In one link you basically lied and misrepresented it and the other link was basically a pro-life site that linked women to church and charity groups which is hardly helpful in real life terms.
    If a woman does not wish to be pregnant, it is certainly a punishment and one that can cost her her life. If a woman wants to be pregnant, then she is consenting and is willing to take that risk.

    Not all pregnancies are a blessing. Women in domestic violence situations, for example, do not always consider it a blessing as it's used as a means to keep her there under the control of her abuser. Just as a rape and incest victim is not going to consider it a blessing. And if the woman does not wish to be pregnant, then it certainly is not a blessing.
    That's not what I said. You really are dishonest, aren't you?
    Because you are only looking at it from the standpoint that she's taken it before she ovulates. From Mayo Clinic:

    Using the morning-after pill may delay your period by up to one week. If you don't get your period within three to four weeks of taking the morning-after pill, take a pregnancy test.
    Normally, you don't need to contact your health care provider after using the morning-after pill. However, if you have bleeding or spotting that lasts longer than a week or develop severe lower abdominal pain three to five weeks after taking the morning-after pill, contact him or her. These can indicate a miscarriage or that the fertilized egg has implanted outside the uterus, usually in a fallopian tube (ectopic pregnancy).
    Planned Parenthood:

    Morning-after pills work by temporarily stopping your ovary from releasing an egg. It’s kind of like pulling the emergency brake on ovulation. Where you’re at in your menstrual cycle and how soon you take morning-after pills can affect how well they prevent pregnancy. Morning-after pills won’t work if your body has already started ovulating.

    In other words, it depends on where the woman is in her cycle.
    You're not responding to what I am actually saying and instead inventing strawmans.

    Can you please state when you think "human life" begins, just so we're clear in the context of this discussion, because you seem to keep changing your mind. You've gone from distinct DNA to when it develops a nervous system when calling it "the baby".

    You keep going on about the "baby". What "baby"?

    Definition of baby

    (Entry 1 of 3)

    1a(1): an extremely young child

    Definition of baby (Entry 2 of 3)

    1: of, relating to, or being an extremely young child

    A baby is a very young child, especially one that cannot yet walk or talk.

    Can you please link where hundreds of thousands of babies are being killed? Because you keep talking about "baby" in this discussion and you're barely making any sense since this discussion is about abortion. Not killing babies or infanticide.

    The woman is not guilty of any crime that would warrant her being forced to have her body used against her will.
  12. Bells Staff Member

    Which starts from when, exactly?

    Fertilisation? Gastrulation? When exactly? Because you've assigned life without actually saying when it starts. There are several stages where scientists suggests life begins, but this is not a scientific issue, but a political one. So when does life begin, Vociferous?
    Only if she keeps it. If she puts it up for adoption, you are not responsible to pay a single cent.
    Or, the cheaper alternative is to recognise the equal human rights of women.
    See above. This has already been addressed multiple times. You have only applied it from a standpoint before she ovulates. From Planned Parenthood, as linked above, just so you hopefully understand:

    Morning-after pills won’t work if your body has already started ovulating.​

    Do you understand now? So if she takes it after she's already ovulated, it won't work.
    I am following the science. Actual science. Not my problem you don't read what you link or understand how women's bodies actually work or how the morning after pill actually works!
    Good lord!

    This is tedious. What options are available to her if she has already ovulated?
    And if you aren't insured and don't qualify for such programs, what then?

    Abortion is a recognised part of reproductive healthcare. Why can't you understand that?
    No I don't think it's murder. Also a reason why I support abortion.
    Which does not work if she has already ovulated.
    Does being dishonest come that easily to you?

    I don't think you actually understand. I would never prevent any woman from doing what is right for herself with her own body. Unlike you, I recognise that we have equal rights and that it's a human rights issue.
    Who's making up science?

    Are you trying to suggest that it's not happening inside her body?

    Her uterus is inside her body and her bodily rights over her body exists. That encompasses the contents of her uterus.
    Oh look, another strawman..
  13. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Do you want to prevent a woman from having an unwanted pregnancy? Get a vasectomy, you selfish prick.
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  14. Baldeee Valued Senior Member

    In the UK the actus reus of murder requires that the victim was a "person in being".

    The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) word the actus reus of murder slightly differently:
    "Subject to three exceptions (see Voluntary Manslaughter below) the crime of murder is committed, where a person:

    • Of sound mind and discretion (i.e. sane);
    • unlawfully kills (i.e. not self-defence or other justified killing);
    • any reasonable creature (human being);
    • in being (born alive and breathing through its own lungs - Rance v Mid-Downs Health Authority (1991) 1 All ER 801 and AG Ref No 3 of 1994 (1997) 3 All ER 936;
    • under the Queen's Peace (not in war-time);
    • with intent to kill or cause grievous bodily harm (GBH)."

    However, the "in being (born alive and breathing through its own lungs)" is synonymous in the UK for being considered a person.

    So, in the UK, the victim of murder must clearly be a person, not just a live human body.
    In the UK, one is not granted status of person until birth.
    In the UK, abortion is not murder, by the actus reus for murder.

    We do have the crime of Child destruction, which requires that the fetus was viable and capable of being born alive.
    And of course there is the Abortion Act 1967.

    Now, maybe in the US, or Australia, the laws are different, and murder doesn't require personhood, but in the UK it very much does.
  15. sculptor Valued Senior Member

    The Unborn Victims of Violence Act of 2004 (Public Law 108-212) is a United States law which recognizes an embryo or fetus in utero as a legal victim, if they are injured or killed during the commission of any of over 60 listed federal crimes of violence. The law defines "child in utero" as "a member of the species Homo sapiens, at any stage of development, who is carried in the womb...

    and via the states:
    Currently, at least 38 states have fetal homicide laws:
    At least 29 states have fetal homicide laws that apply to the earliest stages of pregnancy ("any state of gestation/development," "conception," "fertilization" or "post-fertilization")
    see more at:
  16. Baldeee Valued Senior Member

    The point, that you handily help highlight, is that one needs to be careful before making accusations such as "you interjected [into the definition of murder] the completely arbitrary notion of personhood all on your own" when it (in this case the definition of murder) varies from geography to geography.
    While in Oz it may be the case that personhood is not part of the legal notion of murder (I don't know), in the UK, as I pointed out, the notion of personhood was interjected into the very definition in question.

    So while I understand that folk from the US like to think that everything revolves around them, and that they are all that exist, this is acually an international internet, and not everything for all of us is necessarily as it is in the US.

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  17. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Here's Vociferous's arbitrary definition of personhood:
    To summarise, Vociferous holds that a "baby" comes into being on the fifth day after conception, with conception being defined as the egg and sperm joining. On that magical Fifth Day, "human tissue" becomes "human life" and simultaneously is eligible for membership of the species Homo sapiens.

    Vociferous's usage of the term "human life" is no different from the standard way the philosophical term "person" is used. It is only that Vociferous's choice of when personhood is achieved is a somewhat idiosyncratic one.

    Apparently, for Vociferous, when it comes to granting a human being the right to use a woman's body for 9 months without her permission, the relevant consideration is whether that human has the potential to "develop under the direction of its own genome".

    At this stage, it is not clear to me why this potential is sufficient to grant the foetus rights than override the mother's right to decide what happens to her own body. Perhaps Vociferous can explain. It seems to me that the aforementioned potential existed at the moment of conception. I suspect that Vociferous has motivations for wanting to delay the date of personhood by 5 days, rather than simply adopting the majority position of his fellow pro-lifers that personhood begins at the moment of conception. But the same question applies at that moment, equally.

    That's the crux of the matter here, but I would also like to comment briefly on Vociferous's rather strained attempt to distinguish between "living human tissue" and "human life". In my opinion, any cell that contains a complete set of human DNA could be referred to as "human life". Nothing about a cell having a particular set of DNA should convey a special moral status on it, as far as I can tell.

    A cancer cell has the potential to "develop under the direction of its own genome" but that should not, in my opinion, give it a right to use a woman's body to grow and develop for 9 months without her consent. Perhaps Vociferous will argue that a cancer cell is not "human life" and that's why it doesn't deserve the special status he awards to foetuses. The key word, in that case, would presumably be "human". It follows that Vociferous accords special status to human life (only) that possesses the required potential to develop under the direction of its own genome, even if it is unable to do so independently. If that's the case, he has yet to explain where this special moral status comes from.

    I would also like to point out that the idea of species is not particularly helpful to this discussion. A species is often defined as a collection of independent organisms that can produce viable offspring that are themselves able to reproduce. Vociferous argues that on the magical Fifth Day, a foetus becomes "a member of the species". It is not clear why that "membership" does not accrue earlier, or later, according to the usual definition of "species".
  18. billvon Valued Senior Member

    That definition is, of course, as arbitrary and ridiculous as anything else he's claimed.

    But it's also a common one amongst the pro-life crowd, especially the religious sort. They have a serious problem when it comes to defining when life starts. As soon as the egg is fertilized it starts dividing; the first division happens within about 30 hours. So it's on its way. However, at that point it has not implanted, and stands a 40% chance of failing to implant. Then, even if it does implant, it has a further 30% chance of miscarrying fairly quickly. (The developing blastocyst has to signal the host to not start the next menses, and that communication fails sometimes.)

    This means that most fertilized eggs do not result in babies; in both cases they are flushed out with the next menses. Seen through a religious lens, that means that God intended those embryos to die. And when God intends most embryos to die, the argument that abortion is ungodly loses a lot of its strength.

    So instead they choose a point AFTER fertilization and implantation; that way they can claim "no, see, life starts at X days." (Sometime after implantation, perhaps even after the first missed menses.) That way they can claim "AFTER this point it's a person, and so it's AFTER this point that its death is a real ungodly tragedy."
  19. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

    In Canada, women were not regarded as "persons" until 1929 - https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/persons-case

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  20. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Thanks, billvon. That helps to make sense of Vociferous's ridiculous rationalisations.
  21. sculptor Valued Senior Member

  22. Bells Staff Member

    Mod Note

    Since this is the last thread Pluto2 has posted in, it stands to reason this goes here.

    Pluto2 has been permanently banned from Sciforums for threats against this site and staff after receiving an infraction.
  23. Capracus Valued Senior Member

    The embryo is a human organism at conception, it’s a little more complex organism on day five, but in either case there exists no functional capacity to do anything but to continue to gain in complexity over the coming days, weeks, and months. If Vociferous wants to separate himself from the human being at conception crowd, then he needs to pick a developmental stage months, not days after conception, that can be argued to posses sufficient human capacity to qualify as a human being.

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