Mar 2, 2009

Mission Failed! Abort! Abort!

No doubt that abortion is one of the most touchy debates in today's society. Though the debate is not restricted to Christian vs. Liberal arguments, it sure has become the typical manner of these debates. The typical Evangelical Christian argument usuall falls along lines of abortion being "murder of infants" and statements of the like, and the typical Liberal argument falls along abortion begin the choice of the mother or the embryo being a "lump of cells" without consciousness or feelings. Once again, a debate has fallen into the black and white of American politics. Republicans are pro-life and Democrats are pro-choice. Because obviously cooperation and communication is not an option when it comes to politics. Is it possible to come to an agreement between pro-life and pro-choice? Most Americans say no. The terms have become black and white, simply restricting the ideals to just No Abortion and Yes Abortion. There is a complete lack of understanding from both sides of the argument. Propoganda and twisted information is the number one tool for this debate. I am frustrated by the ignorance.

I mentioned earlier that I was pro-choice "to a degree". What does this mean? It means that I am pro-choice, but I prefer life. If you still don't get it, it's like this: I believe that abortion should be legal, even though I am of the preference of the mother choosing life over abortion. It may seem like a bit of a "fence rider" approach, but I do have my own position on the whole subject. Allow me to explain bit by bit. I personally am not fond of abortion, I do not like the idea of a human being rejected life. Yes, I said "human". I don't care if it is just a lump of cells or not. I also concern myself with the various effects abortion can have on the mother, and the views of those that survived abortion.

The majority of Protestant Christians in America identify themselves as advocates of the pro-life movement. The typical Christian argument is that abortion is murder, or that it is the destruction of God's plan. Many of these Christians are concerned over the souls of the unborn. Whether or not you believe in a soul doesn't concern me at the moment. Those that assert that abortion is murder are faced by those with scientific research to state that the embryo is not "human", and that it doesn't have thoughts or feelings. Another argument is the right of the embryo, which philosophers will argue that the right belongs to the mother; and the third most common argument is the idea of abortion being sinful, dealing with the soul.

As a Protestant Christian myself, I am pretty much expected to follow the mainstream views and arguments. However, I see several problems with these. First, the idea of abortion is not adressed by the Bible. There is something about the body being designed by God before birth, but this description is a part of Psalms, a collection of song and poetry for worship, not as God's actual words or law. Now, Christians, let's apporach the idea logically (stop laughing). Nowhere in the Bible is a detailed account of when the soul is inserted into the vessel is given. So, why do we assume that the embryo has a soul? If God is the perfect Judge, why would he give a soul to something that will never see life? That wouldn't make sense. Now, I am pretty sure some Christian out there is ready to type about how God's ways aren't our ways. Okay, sure. Still, what is the point?
For this point we have to take two approaches:
- If you're a Christian who believes that souls of the young go to heaven because they do not understand sin, then why argue against abortion? According to this logic, the unborn souls will go to heaven anyway. If you argue about the lack of getting to experience life, I have to ask why would you want them to live through all this sin? What if the person becomes an atheist and dies without God? As a result, you believe that the experience of life is better than the eternity in Heaven, despite the horrible effects of life. Then what's the point of pushing for no abortion?
- Okay, now, let's address those that believe souls are born with sin and are judged despite of age. Basically, you believe that God creates the soul, puts it in a vessel, only for it to be killed and have the soul judged even though it never did anything in the first place. Since you believe the soul is born in sin, this soul goes to Hell. There is no sense in that. Before you give me a "God's ways are not our ways" argument, then think about this: In the long run, the soul is never really given a decision to accept or reject Jesus, so how is it judged? Is the soul born knowing God? If so, how can it be sent to Hell without experiencing sin? By this logic, Jesus could not be perfect. After all, the soul is born into sin. Yet Christ was without sin. We reach a paradox. I've heard that Jesus was without sin because he was born not through Adam's seed. Okay, fair enough. However, that refers to the physical body and not the soul. The soul is created by God, not by biological means. Now, don't confuse this with the nature to sin, which is caused by the physical psychology of man. Jesus was faced with temptation and the physical ailments of man, too. Because he was resistant to sin shows us that the soul can not be born in sin. To create a soul only to have it sent to Hell is a waste of God's power and creation. What beauty is there to appreciate if a soul is wasted?
Okay, that aside, let's adress something else. Christians believe that God is the ultimate Judge. He is perfect and without fault. How can God judge something that has not been given experience? I believe that God will not insert the soul into a vessel if the embryo is to be aborted. God knows the future, and as such he knows who will live. God does not waste. To create a soul only to have it sent to hell without experience is a waste. It is like someone opening a can of playdoh and shaping it only to throw it away two seconds later. At least if the soul is given to the life of the atheist is time given to admire God's creation and is given the choice to accept God. If a soul is created without the choice then that removes the God-given freewill of man. Now, if I'm wrong and God does add the soul to a vessel, then I believe that God does not make waste of the vessel: he either brings it to be with Him in Heaven or saves the soul for another vessel.

Okay, so that was my argument on the spiritual level, so let's take this to the physical level. Mainstrem pro-life advocates assert that abortion is murder. Merriam-Webster defines abortion as "the crime of unlawfully killing a person especially with malice aforethought". By this, the assertion that abortion is murder equates to the idea that those who perform abortion kill the babies with the desire to cause pain. Does a doctor want to kill the baby? Maybe if he's a sicko. However, this means that all doctors who perform abortion are murders with the intent to do harm, but a doctor's goal is to heal, not harm. Doctor's take the Hippocratic Oath, the oath not to inflict deliberate harm. If a doctor is performing abortion, then he/she must believe that no deliberate harm is being done. In fact, the doctor might be trying to save the mother's life. To say that abortion is murder is to say that these doctors are murderers, but if these doctors are knowingly murdering then they break the Oath. Not only does the assertion labels doctors, it also undermines their intentions. Now, many pro-life advocates will use statistics comparing abortion to murder and suicide rates. This is the same assertion. It is also a flawed argument, akin to comparing the year's tomato sales to the number of missiles produced, and using this as an argument that tomatos should not be on the market.

Is the fetus alive? Depends on how you define being "alive". If you state that the fetus is a living organism, then you are scientifically correct. However, skin cells are also living organisms. Every time you scratch your nose, you destroy millions of skin cells. Did you kill? Did you know that skin cells have been discovered to be able to develop into embryo? Sperm is a living organism. If your body expels sperm during a wet dream, are you killing? Either way, you have ended an organism's life. However, these are not sentient beings. Is an embryo a sentient being, is it able to process thought? Brain waves can be detected during the sixth week of pregnancy, and the first detected activity in response to pain stimuli appears on the ninth week into pregnancy. So, the embryo has a heart beat and is responsive to pain. This seems to convince pro-lifers that the fetus is indeed alive and is therefore on the same level as a baby. The problem with this is that these features do not make the being sentient. Sentience is the ability to percieve emotionally, spiritually, etc. The embryo is merely as alive as a worm. It does not have complex thought or feelings. It just functions. It is not until the twelfth week of development is the brain fully formed, and the fetus is able to silently cry. Most every pro-choice advocate I have met believes abortion after the first trimester is not humane. At this time, the fetus is conscious of its surroundings and many organs have developed into complex systems.

Now, where do I have problems with abortion? Under a number of circumstances does my stance on abortion change. If a woman has taken part in voluntary sexual intercourse and wants abortion simply because having a baby would be a burden, then I cannot support the abortion. The intention for abortion is for selfish purposes. I suppose its really the laziness of the person that fuels my frustration. Now, if a woman planning to get an abortion is doing so because she cannot financially support a child or pay the hospital bill, or any reason where the concern falls on the child, then I support the abortion, as long as it is within the first trimester. Rape victims fall under this, too. By the end of the first trimester, three months, the mother has been given plenty of time to make her decision. At this point, I cannot support abortion under most circumstances. The only cirumstance where I would support abortion is if it is discovered that the child suddenly serves some kind of fatal danger to the mother. In the event this occurs, the mother's life should take priority. If premature birth can occur, then it needs to be done.

FOCA, the Freedom of Choic Act, was promised to be signed by Obama. I have several concerns about FOCA:
-Parental notification laws will be nullified
A teenager can fight in a war, get pregnant, have an abortion, smoke cigarettes, and still can't have a beer. Honestly, though, this part of the act is bit promotional of dishonesty, is it not? Also, it puts all of the governments funding towards sex education to waste.

-Reversal of the Partial Birth Abortion Act of 2003
So, a baby can be healthfully delivered up to the neck, and then brain tissue is removed through a tube. It's kind of sickening, really. The baby is ready to be born, it has filled pretty much any requirement anyone has for what a human needs to be "born", yet this will allow the baby to be aborted just because the head hasn't come out of the womb yet.

-Reversal of Hyde Amendment
Now our taxes fund abortion. I don't mind if it is save the mother's life or to support someone financially, but if it is because a baby would be an inconvienence, then why not allow my taxes to support celebrity plastic surgery?

-Religiously affiliated hospitals will be forced to provide abortion or face shutdown
This right here is totally infringing on our rights. If a hospital is founded on moral beliefs and view abortion as immoral, why should they be forced? It may not be murder to you, but to them it's the same as telling them to shoot a child or lose thier jobs. This sickens me. We have the right to express our religious beliefs, yet this act will force people to disrefard their morals and beliefs. Now, I understand that many hospitals are religiously affiliated, but many of them already provide abortion.

-Abortions will no longer require a liscensed physician to be performed
...Okay, this is just plain stupid. I don't want a dentist to perform heart surgery on me. Also, if unliscensed characters are allowed to perform abortion...can...can you just see how stupid this is? Hey, I have a great idea: let's allow taxi drivers to fly our commercial planes, even though they don't have a liscense! Eh? Eh?

-Doctors and nurses that object to performing abortion are no longer protected from lawsuits
Again, infringing on morals and personal beliefs.

There is still so much more to say on the abortion issue, but I'll leave it here for now.

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