Monday, June 01, 2009

Recognizing an aberration

Whenever an abortionist kills a patient, the response of the abortion lobby is to dismiss the death as an aberration. These deaths happen about ten times a year. (That the CDC admits to.)

No matter how heinous the malpractice -- having a "hand holder" assist with general anesthesia, shoving a hemorrhaging patient out the door in a wheelchair to bleed to death, massively overdosing a patient then leaving her unattended to lapse into a coma -- we're told that we're not to let these "few bad apples" color our opinion of abortion practitioners in general. Think of the hundreds of abortionists who didn't kill patients this year!

But when an abortionist gets shot, the perspective changes. Suddenly the act of JUST ONE PERSON is a reflection of the roughly 160 million other people who object to abortion. His actions are representative. All those antichoicers are JUST LIKE HIM. We're not to look at the actions of the 160 million prolifers who have done nothing violent. We're only to look at this one guy. He's representative.

Ten dead patients a year aren't a sign that abortionists are sloppy.

One dead abortionist every ten years, however, is a sign that prolifers are violent.

Which is just the sort of logic I'd expect from the movement that asserts that you honor motherhood by killing babies.

25 comments:

Tlaloc said...

You conveniently leave out that abortion is a medical procedure, it is in fact a form of surgery. That means there are risks. Should a sloppy abortion provider be reprimanded and even shut down? Sure. That's why we have medical review boards, and I don't think you'll find many pro-choicers who object to them doing their job.

Had Roeder been an airplane pilot and his flight crashed killing Tiller that'd be a lot more analogous to an abortion doctor losing a patient.

Tlaloc said...

The other thing you leave out is that while this may be the first murder in ten years targetting an abortion provider, there is plenty of other acts of violence and intimidation that occur regularly sponsored by pro-lifers.

Here's a short article about previous tactics taken by pro-lifers to bully Tiller and his staff:

http://obsidianwings.blogs.com/obsidian_wings/2009/06/operation-rescue.html

It's a charming read and puts a little perspective on the matter (which is to say, as I've said before, this was a witch hunt against a man in which every possible tactic was to be used to prevent him providing a legal service to women that wanted it).

GrannyGrump said...

We're talking about "One bad apple isn't representative!"

There would have to be 160 million abortionists committing one fatal act of heinous malpractice every ten years for abortion quackery to be as rare as antiabortion violence. And that's hardly the case.

GrannyGrump said...

Oh -- and the guy who shot Tiller has been arrested and will be tried. So the system works, right?

Tlaloc said...

"There would have to be 160 million abortionists committing one fatal act of heinous malpractice every ten years for abortion quackery to be as rare as antiabortion violence. And that's hardly the case."

You just cannot compare the two, Christina. One is a function of trying to do something complicated that has risks but which is entered into voluntarily by both parties. the other is a deliberate attempt to inflict harm by one party without the other's permission.

Just very different things.


"Oh -- and the guy who shot Tiller has been arrested and will be tried. So the system works, right?"

I have no problem with the handling of the murder investigation. Should I?

GrannyGrump said...

Tlaloc, if you can't tell the difference between gross malpractice and "shit happens" there's no point in carrying on the conversation.

Tlaloc said...

"Tlaloc, if you can't tell the difference between gross malpractice and "shit happens" there's no point in carrying on the conversation."

I'm willing to leave it to the professionals to make that distinction.

bmmg39 said...

"You just cannot compare the two, Christina. One is a function of trying to do something complicated that has risks but which is entered into voluntarily by both parties. the other is a deliberate attempt to inflict harm by one party without the other's permission."

Not that I'm condoning his having been murdered, but Dr. Tiller inflicted plenty of harm on innocent parties without their permission.

GrannyGrump said...

The point is what defines a group of people. You abortion supporters insist that heinous malpractice is rare and hardly typical, since there are only a couple of cases a year of abortionists doing things like shoving hemorrhaging patients out the door to die or having their receptionists administer anesthesia.

But when one person out of 160 million who disapproves of abortion shoots somebody, suddenly this is TYPICAL behavior and we're all tarred with the "extremist murderer" brush.

Well, if we're all extremist murderers, all abortionists are quacks.

Tlaloc said...

"The point is what defines a group of people. You abortion supporters insist that heinous malpractice is rare and hardly typical, since there are only a couple of cases a year of abortionists doing things like shoving hemorrhaging patients out the door to die or having their receptionists administer anesthesia."

I do think that the rate of malpractice is low, but I'm happy to allow medical review boards (or failing that the civil or criminal justice system) to deal with those that occur.


"But when one person out of 160 million who disapproves of abortion shoots somebody, suddenly this is TYPICAL behavior and we're all tarred with the "extremist murderer" brush."

Who has been saying that murder is typical behavior for prolifers? Certainly not me. What I have said is typical is a certain level of dehumanizing invective that routinely gets thrown at abortion providers and which, coupled with an absolute certainty that prolifers know the guilt or innocence of a fellow's soul, promotes violence and enables murders like what happened to Tiller.

It's not a coincidence that it was Tiller who was murdered.

bmmg39 said...

Gee, by "throwing dehumanizing invective at abortion providers," you wouldn't happen to mean "calling a duck a duck," would you?

Abortion ends a human being's life. That some loop-job with a 12-gauge and a vendetta will now face a murder trial doesn't alter scientific fact.

And I LOVE watching as someone who consistently dehumanizes preborn human beings accuse others of "dehumanizing." Simply perfect.

Tlaloc said...

"Gee, by "throwing dehumanizing invective at abortion providers," you wouldn't happen to mean "calling a duck a duck," would you?"

No, I wouldn't.


"Abortion ends a human being's life."

No, it doesn't.


"That some loop-job with a 12-gauge and a vendetta will now face a murder trial doesn't alter scientific fact."

Not a scientific fact. Nice trifecta of err.


"And I LOVE watching as someone who consistently dehumanizes preborn human beings accuse others of "dehumanizing." Simply perfect."

Sweet, glad to bring a little perfection into your day.

bmmg39 said...

Let us know when you enter the seventh grade and begin to study human reproductive biology. I'm SO excited for the world of discovery in your future. Oh, the places you'll go!

SegaMon said...

"No, it doesn't."

Tlaloc, simply stating your opinion is certainly not an argument. You have done this in many instances; it certainly doesn't help your cause.

Tlaloc said...

"Tlaloc, simply stating your opinion is certainly not an argument."

Look what I was responding to (hint- they did exactly the same thing). So, yeah, when one person boldly states their subjective opinion as objective fact I have no problem returning the favor, and you're absolutely right that it doesn't do a damn thing to prove either of our points (unless they pick up on the subtle hint).

Naaman said...

We seem to have a difference of opinion over what a "human being" is. So I'll try to articulate the pro-life viewpoint.

"Human being" is an objective term. That is to say, it is a term with an objective meaning which does not change no matter what the philosophical, ideological, or religious preferences of the viewer might be. That's the first -- and most important -- point. Human beings are human beings, and your "point of view" doesn't really matter.

So what is a "human being"? Well, the word is a compound word, so let's look at each part. A "human being" is:
* human, and
* a living being.

Both of these terms are used in scientific, objective ways. A "human" is defined by DNA. If you have human DNA, then you are human. Other factors -- such as size, appearance, and age -- may vary, but human DNA makes you human. Clear enough?

A "living being" is also used in its scientific meaning. Living beings grow, consume, excrete, and reproduce. They are unique, organized, and ... well ... alive. They are not parts of other organisms, so sperm is not a living being. They may live inside other living beings, but they still maintain their own identity.

Therefore, when a pro-lifer says that abortion kills human beings, we mean that abortion kills:
* living beings, who are
* human.

I hope this comment adequately explains our definition of human being and why we believe that abortion kills human beings. Does anyone have any questions?

Tlaloc said...

"We seem to have a difference of opinion over what a "human being" is. So I'll try to articulate the pro-life viewpoint."

I understand the pro-life view. Honestly, I do. And in the case of "whole cloth" pro-lifers I even can admire the earnest attempt to make the philosophy consistent. I just don't agree with the premise.


"A "living being" is also used in its scientific meaning."

The term you want is "organism." "living being" is not a scientific term. The problem is that the thing in question is not actually an organism of the species Homo Sapiens from conception. This is trivial to prove at the most extreme end- HS are most definitely multicellular and a fertilized egg is not. In addition until late development a fetus carries on the life processes on the cellular level but not as a human organism does (As an example- it's digestive track for instance is not capable of processing food, and it relies on the mother's digestive track, which means it is merely an extension of the mother). This means it is just as alive as any tissue in your body, all of which carry on life processes at the cellular level but none of which alone can carry on the processes at the organism level.

At some point in late development the fetus reaches a stage where it is capable of carrying on all those processes if it were removed from the womb. At that point, and not before it is an organism. Consequently that's the most logical time to call it a human being.

army_wife said...

So, people with a colostomy have an incomplete digestive TRACT... so they're not human, right? Since they rely on a colostomy bag (outside medical intervention) they can't excrete "on their own".

A diabetic can't adequately process the insulin from their food/in their bloodstream. They rely on supplemental insulin injections and special diets to keep their blood sugar in check. I guess my grandmother ( a diabetic) must not be human.

Fetal Development (not exhaustive, space does not permit that) highlights: Week 4 (LMP dating): Mother misses first period. Baby's circulatory system is well established. Week 5: Baby's heart has four chambers and circulatory system is fully functioning - ultrasound able to show beating heart. Week 6.5: Baby makes first autonomous movements. Baby's brain waves can be recorded. Baby's kidneys begin to produce urine. Week 9: Baby can make a fist, suck its thumb, and produce a variety of facial expressions. Week 10: All organs are formed and starting to work together.
(Source: AmazingPregnancy.com)

Need I go on?

The person with damaged kidneys who needs dialysis is no less of a person than you or I. Yet his body is not functioning at 100%. The diabetic. The colostomy patient. Just because someone's body doesn't work the same way as a healthy, young adults' body normally works, does not make them less of a person. If I get into a car accident and need temporary life support, that does not make me subhuman, simply a part of the machines keeping me alive. I do not become an inhuman machine simply because I am dependent upon them temporarily.

Watch 4D ultrasounds of infants early on in the gestational period. They display distinct, autonomous movements, expressions, even preferences.

Is the mother's body producing their brain waves and dictating their movements? NO! A fetus ("embryo", for the ones before 12 weeks) is its own distinct, unique individual organism. Not part of the mother's body. "Dependent upon" does NOT equal "the same as" or "an indistinct component or part of" the mother's body.

Lest you think I don't know what I am talking about because I have never been there: I am the mother of two beautiful children and I am about five weeks pregnant with a third. I have seen all the early ultrasounds. And the 20-week ones. I have been part of this. I have lived it. These children have been dependent on me for their sustenance in one way or another since the moment of conception. They have never been just "tissue", or just "part of my body". They have never been a parasite, a cancer, or any other illness. I have played games with a child still in the uterus (don't believe me, but ask women who have carried children to term... I guarantee many of them could testify to this). They are now and always have been distinct, unique, wonderful individuals completely separate from my husband and I. I have an 18-month-old who is completely dependent upon me to provide his food and drink (and clean diapers) because these are things he cannot take care of himself yet. Let me assure you that he is definitely his own person.

When did I first get the feeling that something was really not right about the pro-choice argument? When I saw the first early ultrasound of my first baby. A clump of cells? Yeah, OK. Try a recognizable, sweet, little human being. Ask a geneticist about it -- Jerome Lejeune (hope I spelled his name right) once said that at conception, a new organism is formed -- that it is no longer a matter of taste or opinion, but plain experimental evidence. He testified to this in front of the U.S. Senate.

Need I say more? Whether or not any of this is good enough for you, well... that's your problem, not mine. I know the truth. I have seen it with my own two eyes and lived it. The truth is the truth, even if many choose not to believe it.

Tlaloc said...

"So, people with a colostomy have an incomplete digestive TRACT... so they're not human, right? Since they rely on a colostomy bag (outside medical intervention) they can't excrete "on their own". "

Technically they're a cyborg, if you are inclined towards sci-fi. I have no problem calling such a person a human being. If we want to get technical as far as whether they meet the criteria for an organism then we have to say they are a damaged organism. And indeed they are- they would likely die without the intervention of a device to take over part of the normal life processes.


"Need I go on?"

I don't know, do you understand from above why this argument is a non-sequitor?


"Is the mother's body producing their brain waves and dictating their movements? NO!"

You are correct, the fetus developing brain is producing brainwaves. So? Obviously the fetus is in the process of developing into an organism and there is every reason to believe that various parts will develop at different rates. It may have a functioning circulatory system before the nervous system is finished, or vice versa.

But that really doesn't make the slightest bit of difference. Until it is able to live disconnected from the mother or any machine meant to substitute for her it's not its own organism.


"Watch 4D ultrasounds of infants early on in the gestational period. They display distinct, autonomous movements, expressions, even preferences."

Funny a bunch of prolifers said the same thing about Terry Schiavo. They were wrong then, seeing in random nerve action something deliberate and planned.


"Lest you think I don't know what I am talking about because I have never been there: I am the mother of two beautiful children and I am about five weeks pregnant with a third."

Great, I have two kids of my own.


"They have never been just "tissue", or just "part of my body""

That's a subjective belief on your part. And you;re totally entitled to hold it, but I will and do point out the logical holes with it, and I refute any pretense that it is fact or scientific.

Kathy said...

Don't bother arguing with tlolac -- he's just a troll who gets his kicks out of professing opinions he doesn't hold, merely to get a rise out of people.

Tlaloc said...

"he's just a troll who gets his kicks out of professing opinions he doesn't hold, merely to get a rise out of people."

What has given you the impression that I don't believe what I'm saying?

Kathy said...

Oh, I dunno, the same thing that gave you the impression that "Joshua" I mentioned before was just a troll who like to get his kicks out of expressing opinions not his (i.e., that the parents' right to kill their offspring should not end at birth, but should be carried forward until the child was "self-aware"). You completely disbelieved his very lengthy comments, dismissing them out of hand as just being a troll. You sound just like him, so I am going to therefore assume that if you're right about Joshua being merely a troll and not really believing in child murder, then you don't really believe what you're saying either.

Tlaloc said...

"Oh, I dunno, the same thing that gave you the impression that "Joshua" I mentioned before was just a troll who like to get his kicks out of expressing opinions not his"

I was just pointing out that you shouldn't believe everything that someone says online.


"You completely disbelieved his very lengthy comments"

Technically, I disbelieved your characterization of his comments since I never actually read his comments. Since this entire point arose from you freaking out over my choice of handle I didn't really feel any need to treat the matter as important.

Kathy said...

"Technically, I disbelieved your characterization of his comments since I never actually read his comments."

Oh, that's priceless! Just priceless! You're even worse than I thought.

Oh, wait. I can't believe everything I read online. I guess I shouldn't believe you when you say you never read his comments? Let's see, to keep this from being too confusing, from now on, I will come to you and ask you what I should and shouldn't believe, since you have SUCH great powers and knowledge in order to know whether everyone else is a troll or not, without even reading their comments! Yes, I'm dripping sarcasm here.

And, just for the record, I didn't "freak out" over your choice of a screen name -- I merely noted the irony of you choosing the name of a god who demanded infant sacrifice, and I wondered if you agreed with killing babies...just like Joshua...who you wouldn't even read... but just disbelieved what I said about it, although it would have taken you half a minute (maybe more, if you're a slow reader) to find that what I said was true.

You think you're so smart, but you're really just pretty pathetic.

Tlaloc said...

"Oh, that's priceless!"

Just trying to be accurate, ma'am.


"Oh, wait. I can't believe everything I read online. I guess I shouldn't believe you when you say you never read his comments?"

You should retain a health skepticism, certainly.


"Yes, I'm dripping sarcasm here."

I think there are topical creams to help with that.


"And, just for the record, I didn't "freak out" over your choice of a screen name -- I merely noted the irony of you choosing the name of a god who demanded infant sacrifice, and I wondered if you agreed with killing babies...just like Joshua...who you wouldn't even read... but just disbelieved what I said about it, although it would have taken you half a minute (maybe more, if you're a slow reader) to find that what I said was true."

This is you not freaking out?


"You think you're so smart, but you're really just pretty pathetic."

I am pretty smart. I can also be quite diplomatic. But I also feel free to mock people who decide they're going to be all high and mighty. Call it the duality of man if you like.