Saturday, August 19, 2006

The Electric New Paper, Singapore - The Electric New Paper News: We must make kids realise the value of life

I now blame CL for telling me about the post, it's worst than I thought. Full of emotion rhetoric and general BS. Here's why I think her arguments are bad.

I'm taking my information from Religious Tolerance

DO you know how babies are killed inside their mothers' wombs? Well, let me tell you.

No you don't, you simply give an emotional and grotesque description that vastly oversimplifies the issues and ignores something I like to call...oh, reality and facts?

The fact you call them "babies" show very clearly what you do not know. I challenge you to hold up a blastocyst and call it the equivalent of a real baby. In fact I challenge you to say that you will save a petri-dish of 15 blastocysts over a one-day old baby from a burning building.
Once a baby is three months old, he can feel a pin prick. He likes to dance. He swims and kicks in the tiny pool his mother made for him.

I call bullshit. There simply isn't enough synapse connections to do all these things you ascribe to the fetus. It's a fetus and not a child for that very simple reason and thus there isn't the sort of higher level thinking that enables all these stupid emotive and charge verbs you ascribe to it. Dance? Bollocks. Feel a pin prick? Only in the same way a touch-me-not closes up when you touch it. Swim? Bull. Sorry, science doesn't help you here lady, only your personal attribution based on your religious belief.

Human life, as we should recall, it defined as anything with human dna with it, that includes your hair and your nails and your epidermis. So you kill "human life" every single time you wash your hands.

What we're taking about is a human person and that's where the mess comes in. When does personhood occur? And you know she's on shaky grounds when you refuses to answer the question. No go jose, then your entire piece becomes yet another just so story.

Because if a fetus is not a person, then you simply cannot put a false equivallency of abortion with murder. And it becomes like any othe action that ends human life.

His death is by dismemberment - his warm cave is prised open, his head scrapped off. Then everything - the tiny torso, hands too small for nails, and legs which will never tread on anything other than water - is sucked out.

Yet more emotional rhetoric. A clear sign of argumentative weakness if I ever saw one.

Here's something to keep in mind. Half of pregnancies don't even come to term because of spontaneous abortions. Even where abortions are volitional, the vast majority come prior to week 9 where abortions are often induced chemically through pills. So yes, go on and push your reality of how things work in lieu of actual arguments.
His mother never felt him kick. She can almost believe her son never existed.

Another foetus makes it to 24 weeks - or six months old. She pats her tummy, scratches her cheek and rubs her nose. She can almost open her eyes.

Surely she is too old to be killed. Or is she? In Singapore, she could still be aborted. Did you know this?

Many of you would have averted your eyes, shuddered at the graphic details.

But don't. Don't look away because you need to know.

Now I'm mad, this is smug sanctinomy at its best and it's a damning indictment of her character. This ain't about love or what not, this ain't about trying to prevent abortion, this is about a holier-than-thou attitude.

And yeah, I say that abortions up till 6 months are perfectly legitimate because the fetus isn't viable yet (granted that science is pushing the limits), but unless you want to surgically remove the very pre-mature "baby" and artificially incubate it and risk its health and future, I say the choice is ultimately the mother's.

The state could come in but beware the slippery slope there. Once the coersive power of the state comes in, there is no guarantee where it's going to stop. Perhaps it starts with a ban on smoking and drinking, then maybe it creeps into a total prohibition on mothers' travelling by car, and hey while we're at it, let's just keep them in birthing centres so they can't eat fast food or risk the fetus' life.

Abortion is not about sucking out a mass of cells and then flushing it down the loo. It is not about regaining your freedom to pursue your own life.

It is about ending the life of a baby. I have known this since I was a teenager.

More than 20 years ago, I remember a group of us CHIJ Toa Payoh girls huddled in a dark room, looking in horror at the tubs of little bloody babies - dead, eyes shut and arms twisted. The tubs stood as high as a man, and there was no dignity, no grief from the multiple tiny deaths.

We were watching a video on how abortions were carried out. Then and there, we were confronted with the consequences of wrong choices.

Yet more handwaving.....
Today, teenage sex is real. A survey last year showed that 8 per cent of local women had unplanned pregnancies before they were 16.

So what?

I'm currently writing an article and one of its core premises is that an examination of principles is vital if you want to derive an "ought" from an "is" or in other words, a normative statement froma positive one.

She doesn't have one beyond a "pious" "life is precious" assertion.
Aborting their baby is one way of escaping their responsibilities. Abandoning their newborn is another.

And your sanctimonious article makes things worse.
The latter, of course, is a far more horrific course of action. Death is slow but certain - and completely unnecessary, since there are groups willing to take in unwanted newborns.

How many babies abandoned died in that fashion? Or is another one of your just-so stories?

How do we address the problem?

And here we go into the depths of non-logic.

First, most immediately, we have to make mothers aware that someone will care for their unwanted babies. Just give birth safely, make a phone call, and someone will come and get the baby.

*Roll eyes*, let's engage in reality here. And in the process they have to destroy their lives by a) gettting kicked out of the family or b) forced to marry a man she does not want, c) suffers complications from pregnancy (because something the anti-choice side doesn't like to take about is the 5% severe complication risk that threaten fatal repecussion for both baby and mother), d) forced to give up school etc. etc.

Or hey, there's always the back alley abortion clinic which could kill her.

"Destroying" one "life" apparently is very bad. In which case I say two is worse.

Second, a more long-term issue, parents must teach their children the value of life.

I do, which is why I support a mother's right to choice.
Conception is one possible consequence of sex, even protected sex. If you insist on having sex before you are married, then you have to be prepared to be a parent.

Getting into an accident is one of the possible consequences of driving a car or riding a bike, and yes people died or suffer various injuries. Now, I doubt anyone would legitimately argue that we should let those people suffer and refuse treatment to them for whatever reason, even if it were pure stupid negligence.
Getting an abortion is too easy now. Teenagers do not have to tell their parents. They walk into a hospital or a clinic, get counselled and then two days later, go in for the procedure.

Ease of access does not equate to ease of abortion. Note how easily she glides over the fact that a) there's a counselling session and b) a waiting period.
Many people support abortion because they think it is about the rights of the mother versus the rights of the baby. Or esoteric arguments about when an egg and a sperm, surely lifeless things, become a life.

But abortion is not about whether a woman - a girl sometimes - has the right to choose what she wants to do. It is about whether she takes responsibility for what she has already done.

Translation: I don't have a principle to stand on.

Shall we also force the guy to marry her? Or maybe let's take a leave from the old testament and get the rapist to marry her if necessary (and oh yes, making payment to the father at the same time).

There are many ways to take responsibility, one of which is to learn from the mistake rather than committing it again. Or worse, to force the person to live with the mistake and destroy her life.


There are three things that should be changed to help her do that.

First, anyone who wants an abortion must be made to watch a video about the procedure. Second, parental consent should be compulsory. This is already the case in 28 states in America.

Why? Another assertion and worse still, one that would hurt the most vulnerable section of women seeking abortions i.e. the young.

Also, the percentage of abortion seekers under the age of 18 is less than 10%, so can we say unfair discrimination?

Now, I could make an argument on why it is constitutionally not prohibited or one based on in loco parentis (although given that the parent is not obliged to maintain the child and the child's child, I'm not certain why this necessarily applies) but that's to confuse the status quo for the necessarily good.
In Singapore, which has a more conservative stance on so many things, a pregnant teenager who wants an abortion doesn't even need to alert her parents.

For good reason. It's a vulnerable class of persons that the law should help protect. Stop destroying more young lives already!
Third, we ought to encourage religious groups to share their stance on abortions and family life. In temples, mosques and churches, religious leaders should teach what their holy books say about sex and babies.

*Bwah ha ha ha* Bloody fundies and their code words. But seriously go ahead, but I don't think you'll like the answer. Muslims believe that ensoulment occurs just before the 3rd trimester, so it sure as hell ain't murder. Jews believe personhood occurs at childbirth.

I personally think if I were an omnibenevolent deity who cares, I wouldn't make the rate of spontaneous abortions as high as 50%.
In all schools, students - boys as well as girls - should be shown tapes of what abortion is like. What it does to a baby, as well as to the girl's body.

Sure, but that's only one half of the solution.

If you expect a pro-abstinence policy to work (which seems to be the implication from the first statement), then you naivity is just plain stupid. Put in a comprehensive sex-education policy, make contraceptives even more widely available and promote their usage and then we'll come and talk.
At home, parents should show their children pictures of themselves fresh out of the womb.

'This is you as a baby. We love you, because you were made from our flesh and blood,' parents should say.

The most important lesson of all?

If you love babies, you will not kill them, no matter how 'inconvenient' they appear to be at the time.

*Roll eyes*....I'm so going to puke. Yeah, abortions are taken very very lightly, and yes here I go to get pregnant so I can get an abortion and plan a post-abortion party.

Fuck it.

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