Monday, January 21, 2002

"My doctor told me to avoid water sports, so I don't Roe or Wade"-Tomorrow is the 29th anniversary of Roe V Wade, and the rhetoric will fly in Washington. However, there isn't too much debate there, just shouting between the anti-abortion and abortion-rights crowds. Trashing abortion by quoting Isaiah or Jerimiah doesn't do it for me. What does do it for me was weighing the 6-7 months of crap the mother will have to put up with (assuming she's a few months in) versus the snuffing out of a young life. Very few people will want to look at a fetus as just a blob of protoplasm that can be discarded without any queasiness. The fact that this queasiness is not intellectual but a gut feel doesn't disqualify it. Most people will try to make a decision they can live with, not knowing exactly what the right answer is. They will pick the lesser of the two evils, instinctively judging the bogon count on each of the options. On other reproductive-based issues such as embryo research, libertarians will argue that there is no right answer and that they should not slow down research just because of queasiness. If an out-of-the-womb human life has a value of 1.0, what fraction of that is a fetus at 3 days? 3 months? 8.99 months? It's greater than zero, but less than one. Running an INT(baby) function that truncates the value to zero isn't proper. For those of you who are truly "pro-choice" in that you don't like abortion but don't want to force that on people, look at that value you place on the unborn unit and compare that to the burden of pregnancy. When faced with that question, many pro-choice people will be pro-restriction instead, wanting to keep abortion legal in the tougher cases as in rape, danger to the mother or severe deformity and banning it in others. Give your gut a hearing, it's right more times than its wrong. [Update-(1/22 10PM) Got my first slam mail, questioning my salvation. I am solidly pro-life, and if you read my bio, solidly born-again. The only possible situation I would sign off on an abortion is where both mom and baby would die without it. The quote above was a quip from the Justice Souter hearing , not my personal opinion. I was trying to pose a non-Bible-thumping argument against abortion. One guy didn't get it.]

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