Archive for Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Colo. ballot measure would define fertilized egg as person

November 14, 2007


— The Colorado Supreme Court cleared the way Tuesday for an anti-abortion group to collect signatures for a ballot measure that would define a fertilized egg as a person.

The court approved the language of the proposal, rejecting a challenge from abortion-rights supporters who argued it was misleading and dealt with more than one subject in violation of the state constitution.

If approved by voters, the measure would give fertilized eggs the state constitutional protections of inalienable rights, justice and due process.

"Proponents of this initiative have publicly stated that the goal is to make all abortion illegal - but nothing in the language of the initiative or its title even mentions abortion," Kathryn Wittneben of NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado said in a statement. "If that's not misleading, I don't know what is."

Wittneben and others said the measure would have would hamper in-vitro fertilization and stem cell research and would effectively ban birth control.

Proponents of the measure disagree.

"It doesn't outlaw abortion, it doesn't regulate birth control," said Kristi Burton, 20, of Colorado for Equal Rights. "It's just a constitutional principle. We're laying a foundation that every life deserves protection."

Burton said the initiative would simply define a human.

"It's very clearly a single subject," Burton said. "If it's a human being, it's a person, and hey, they deserve equal rights under our law."

Colorado for Equal Rights must collect 76,000 signatures in six months to get the measure on the ballot.


jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

tanzer: God gets put on trial, hires a big shot lawyer, gets off, then gets sued in Civil court for restitution.

Joe Hyde 10 years, 6 months ago

Many thousands of couples who were unable to have children "the usual way" have had success using invitro fertilization, followed by implantation of the fertilized egg in the woman's body. Still, it is the nature of pregnancy that most fertilized eggs self-abort: full term pregnancies are the exception not the rule.

So...let's suppose this microscopic "legal person with equal rights" (the invitro fertilized egg) is implanted in a woman then lost due to spontaneous self-abortion. Is the state of Colorado then bound by law to charge the doctor, medical staff and both parents with manslaughter?

50YearResident 10 years, 6 months ago

Next in Colorado: Man sentenced to 20 years for having wet dream and killing 100,000 potential children!

imastinker 10 years, 6 months ago

You people are ridiculous. People die all the time from natural causes.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

Right-thinker: No, one side is anti-abortion, the other says that it's a personal choice. Pro-life is a crap term with no meaning, since they can't prove that they are truly defending life as we as a society defines it, and anti-life would imply that all babies should be aborted, and all people should be killed.

Why do the contextually correct labels offend you? Maybe because you're consistently deluding yourself?

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

Make that a "pre-assumed yet unproven term." It's probably more accurate than "crap term."

lucky_guy 10 years, 6 months ago

I don't suppose anybody in Colorado sees the irony that they are fighting for every egg, viable or not, when GW vetoes SCHIP and the Health bills as too expensive. What about an extra million births every year (the number of yearly abortions that the right says happens every year). This is just like Iraq, lots of shock and awe and no planning for the anything else. This may be a ploy by the Dobson folks in C.Springs so he can distract the population in an election year. This could also be the springboard Dobson uses if he runs for Prez.

sourpuss 10 years, 6 months ago

The real question is, what if said person (fertilized egg) doesn't WANT to be implanted in a uterus? Do we have to get it all in writing? Can a zygote hold a pen? My advice: don't get pregnant in Colorado. Also, some people enjoy sex, especially early in the pregnancy (but some straight through). Can we jail these people for exposing themselves to a minor (well, just the men, obviously)? Should we put them on the sex offenders list? If a woman develops health problems due to the pregnancy, can she sue the zygote for damages?

I think His Noodliness is having a good laugh somewhere.

shockchalk 10 years, 6 months ago

Jonas..........actually pro-choice is the real crap term because you are denying the child any choice on whether or not you murder them.

staff04 10 years, 6 months ago

r_t, I prefer pro-choice and anti-choice...what do you read into that?

Frederic Gutknecht IV 10 years, 6 months ago

If a fertilized egg is not human, what is it???

Don't tell me. I know this. Ummmm... A fertilized egg?

staff04 10 years, 6 months ago

Yep, it really is just as cut and dried as that, isn't it 4th? Must make your world so much easier to think in such uncomplicated terms.

preebo 10 years, 6 months ago

...essentially what this shows is Colorado's Supreme Court is made up of individuals from the more conservative era in Colorado (New Life Church and Focus on the Family supremacy) while the public has become progressively more moderate. They have elected a Democratic Governor, Senator, and a couple of Representatives since 2004. In effect, changing the political landscape in Colorado as in much of the West.

Unfortunately, this is a test in futility as this law has no Constitutional backing whatsoever. If the US Constitution doesn't recognize fertilized eggs as people, then the Colorado State Constitution won't either.

preebo 10 years, 6 months ago

"...unless it's "anti-life" and "anti-abortion"."

How about "anti-pregnancy"? Is that acceptable?

Chris Golledge 10 years, 6 months ago

Just thinking...

Personally, I don't believe that the moment an egg and a sperm get together to form a zygote, that the zygote (fertilized egg) is a cognitive human deserving every protection that society can offer. However, late term fetuses can and often do survive situations which cause them to leave the womb prematurely, and they come out clearly having thoughts and wants, just not able to express them very well; so, I don't like the idea of late term abortions (barring danger to the women's physical health; tough choices regarding one life over another have to be made). But this only points out that the real problem is defining at what stage of development a proto-human (for want of a better term) becomes a human. So, while I disagree with this group's definition, I think it is a good idea to come to some common one. At least that way we can have some consistency on how many other laws are written and enforced.

I think currently that birth is considered the transition time by law. This group is arguing for conception. I don't think it's supportable, but it may be worth considering.

Oh, btw, if you are thinking to pick up on my reference to cognition and take it to the other extreme, yeah, if my body is brain-dead, please unplug my tired, old carcass. I'm not there anymore.

staff04 10 years, 6 months ago

"'anti' needs to go, unless it's "anti-life" and "anti-abortion""

Read: "Unless it fits my narrow agenda."

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"right_thinker (Anonymous) says:

Jonas, your post again demonstrates how the left would rather dictate who says what and how they say it."

Not at all. You were the one dictating words being used, I merely summed up their relative contextual accuracies. You should try and stop projecting.

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

What about an embryo produced not be fertilization but by somatic cell nuclear transfer? Would these have the full rights and privileges as a human being?

The liability and criminal issues surrounding this would be large. In vitro fertilization doctors could be charged with murder by freezing embryos, not all of which survive the freezing.

Mothers could be charged with murder if they choose to have an abortion or do anything that might harm the embryo.

Criminal liability hearings could be held about "spontaneous" abortions or fetal inviablity. Who says it is not the fault of the mother? Every embryo or fetus death would require an investigation, just like any human being's death now does. A jury would decide based upon evidence.

It is easy to say "Oh, those things would never happen". Anyone familiar with our justice system would think otherwise.

These types of issues could be and would be raised, and they would be hashed out in the courts just as all other constitutional and legal issues are.

This is the nature of passing a law or changing a Constitution. There would be real, tangible effects of this ideological crusade by abortion opponents.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"shockchalk (Anonymous) says:

Jonas:::.actually pro-choice is the real crap term because you are denying the child any choice on whether or not you murder them."

All choices invariably affect and infringe on someone or something else. Choice is for the mother, not the fetus, in this argumentative viewpoint. Feel free to protest the viewpoint, but you can't deny the accuracy of the terminology.

Maybe the problem is that we don't have the technology to allow the fetus a choice in the matter. Why don't you get on figuring out how to communicate with the fetus in order to give it a choice or a voice in the matter.

sourpuss 10 years, 6 months ago

Ultimately, life is complicated, and no one is guaranteed anything. The "unborn" deserve as much protection as yesterday's newspaper. If they are carried to term and get born and are viable, good for them. They have a lifetime of suffering and taxes ahead of them. If they are a person and don't get born, they get to go be with the FSM. Again, yay! And if they aren't a person, then it is just a bunch of cells that weren't viable (for whatever reason, including uninterested parents) and they get broken down into their elements and made into something else, just like everyone else will be.

As it is, we -know- very little about the nature of life. You can -believe- all the things you like but that doesn't affect whatever the reality is. Passing feel-good legislation only muddies the waters. I don't even see this as an issue the government needs to be concerned with. I don't see abortion as an issue the government needs to be concerned with. But then again, I don't care if someone gets a wart removed either.

And while we're at it, if we're all about "potential" in our fellow humans, why do we let so many brilliant children fail in poor schools? Why do we let money determine who is worthy of a higher education? Why do we let skin color be a basis for judgment? Seems like we have a lot of fix with people who are already alive, rather than worrying about ones which may or may not be.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"the other side is pro-abortion."

Again, the term pro-abortion implies that abortion is always the correct choice. No one is advocating that position that I know of. If you want to support it, then show us people who think that abortion is always the correct choice.

Confrontation 10 years, 6 months ago

So, will these eggs be allowed to drive cars, get jobs, and provide for themselves? Will the conservatives adopt these eggs and keep them warm? They could even have a petri dish library in their homes.

manbearpig 10 years, 6 months ago

I didn't read most of the comments that are on here because I can guess as to the content and know that it is mostly useless . . . from both sides.

I have two thoughts on this measure:

First, the group should change the wording of their amendment in some way so as to define a person as a fertilized egg implanted in the uteran wall (those with a background in medical science or more knowledge in reproduction should feel free to elaborate). This would get around those messy complications with IVF techniques.

Second, if this succeeds, it will pose the first really interesting challenge to Roe v. Wade. If any of you have actually read that case, and have a background in constitutional law as it applies to old cases where a pregnant woman was murdered and the state tried to charge the perpetrator with two counts of murder, then you would know that the common law derived from those cases is that the states have the right to define exactly what is and what is not human. In Blackmun's opinion in Roe v. Wade, he, interestingly, pretty much avoids the issue that it is a state's right to define what is and is not human. The Roe ruling basically robs that established power from the states, so this would be an interesting test if it were to succeed.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"Confrontation (Anonymous) says:

So, will these eggs be allowed to drive cars, get jobs, and provide for themselves?"

Unfortunately, statistically speaking, these eggs will often drift through school aimlessly, join egg-gangs in early to mid-youth, get into drugs and start a downward cycle of illicit sex, heavy narcotic use and violence. They will be, in the end, rotten eggs. (ba dum ching)

Had to ruin it with that pun.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"Who can say it is not a politically driven topic?"

Is there anyone saying that? Personally, I think the problem is that this topic is too politically driven.

preebo 10 years, 6 months ago


While you have addressed the issues of Federalism and States rights, you have conveniently ignored the real issue here. That is, application of the 14th Amendment and the Equal Protection Clause to the unborn. Contrary to your statement, no State has the authority to identify humanity, while it can classify people (suspect classes) within the amendments framework it cannot personify. The terms clearly enumerated in the 14th amendment are "born or naturalized". This clearly lays out a starting point that the amendment takes effect. Equal Protection as deciphered by the Supremes only takes hold at birth or Naturalization.

guesswho 10 years, 6 months ago

I guess this would outlaw some forms of contraception, such as IUDs (if they are still used) and morning after pills, correct - as both of those prevent fertilized eggs from implanting in the uterus. How would one know when the egg implants itself?

manbearpig 10 years, 6 months ago


Your point is well taken, but I am referring to the cases where the Supreme Court has ruled that a state can determine at what point a an embryo 'quickens' or becomes human. Obviously, a state cannot personify a tiger or a rock and bestow upon it 14th amendment rights to equal protection and substantive and procedural due process, but a state can clarify the exact moment when an embryo becomes human thus bestowing upon it some degree of rights.

The main thrust of my argument is that Blackmun, in Roe v. Wade, completely sidesteps the most important part of the debate. That is, "when does human life begin?" He did this because he knew at the time that the Court had no power to declare such a standard, that it rested solely within the power of the states, and that only be sidestepping could he reach his desired result.

The fact is, that this is still an extremely important question that can only be resolved by individual states according to the will of the constituents of those states. Until this question is answered, at least legally, let alone morally or medically, we really can't begin to have a serious debate about the 'right to an abortion'. This has to be where the debate begins, I'm not sure how we just jumped past this part.

Now, before I get jumped all over, I want to state that I am not asserting what the answer to that question should be, I am merely stating that Roe v. Wade was a poorly decided case, not necessarily because of the outcome, but because it skips the first logical step in analysis. A step, that is rightfully left to the states to answer.

moo 10 years, 6 months ago

  1. Terminology - RT, you are correct, all of the names for opponents and proponents of the legality of abortions are nothing more than politics. The left says, "pro-choice" and "anti-choice" or "anti-abortion," the right says, "pro-life" and "anti-life" or "pro-abortion." This is all just politics. However, simplifying the terms to pro-abortion and anti-abortion is not correct either, 4th grade; as many people have already pointed out, "pro-abortion" suggests that the person is actively in favor of the act of abortion itself. This is a misnomer, however, as most proponents are in favor of the legality of abortions, not necessarily the procedure itself. So I would suggest the terms "pro-legal abortion" and "anti-legal abortion." These, unlike the others are not propaganda designed to manipulate people's emotions and do in fact describe the people they are meant to describe.

  2. The law itself - This is just silly. I have studied developmental biology and a fertilized egg is human tissue; however, it is in no way a human being. It has the potential to become one, but until it is viable to live outside of the uterus, it is not. Rather, it is a parasite. People may object to that terminology, but in a strictly biological sense that is exactly what an egg becomes as soon as it implants. It is not dead, of course, it is a living organism that unlike a human cannot live on its own. The fetus cannot make a choice, and we cannot assume that it would choose to live if it could. Instead, the parents are responsible for making this decision. A fetus is human, but it is not a person.

RawkChawkJHawk 10 years, 6 months ago

Right_Thinker: Newspapers follow AP Style. Last time I read the entry (and it's been a while), The AP Stylebook said the "Pro-Choice" and "Pro-Life" labels were inflammatory. The guide suggests saying "supports abortion rights" or "opposes abortion rights." This seems to be the most even-handed approach. But it's long, and newspapers like short. So it gets abbreviated to "anti-abortion."

The real problem is it's an inflammatory subject. There are no easy answers for that.

sdinges 10 years, 6 months ago

The voting public has no business in my uterus. Please stay out.

No amount of moralizing, word play or righteousness will give you the right to make choices about -my- body for me.

This bill is ridiculous on a basic level - many couples who undergo fertility treatments have fertilized eggs left over. By giving these eggs rights, you are, in essence, stating that the couple is violating those rights by not giving the egg a fair chance at life by implanting it. So what? We force the couple to implant them all, regardless of the consequences?

Once again - stay out of my uterus. Stop trying to control my fertility. It's mine, not yours. It's -my- choice.

Confrontation 10 years, 6 months ago

jonas: Great post! I didn't think of the egg gangs!

manbearpig 10 years, 6 months ago


I understand the point you are making, and, while I don't have any medical expertise to really address that point, I can tell you that what is medically true and what is legally true are often quite different things. A great example is the insanity defense. The way the law defines insanity in most states is completely at odds with how psychiatrists and psychologists say the brain actually functions.

Therefore, just saying that science says it is not human is not the end of the story, The law takes far more into account than just science. Like it or not, the law is a reflection of the beliefs of the populace to a large extent.

Finally, I will reject the somewhat finality with which you say science has shown that the fertilized egg is not human. First, you are attempting to use science to define something that inherently requires a some sort of value judgment. For instance, you can define 'blue' as a certain frequency of light, but you haven't truly defined blue in the way that 99.9% of the population understands it. Second, you seem to hinge your argument on viability outside of the uterus. I don't think I really need to go into a long-winded argument about the fallacies inherent in that kind of assertion, but I will anyway, just to be clear. A baby's, embryo's, zygote's, etc. ability to survive outside of the womb is constantly changing along with our medical capabilities. This is not so much a definition of humanity as it is a definition of the extent of our knowhow and capabilities. Also, the obvious reply is that a baby that has been in the womb for nine months cannot survive on its own outside of the womb.

The thrust of my argument is that the definition of 'human' depends upon a quality that can only be measured through some kind of value judgment that cannot be measured scientifically. It is a value judgment, one that must be made, and, therefore, it is a judgment that must be left to legislatures to decide. The legislatures should weigh religious, ethical, and scientific arguments when making this determination. Science can't answer everything.

In case you should want to respond, which I would like as your first post was thought-provoking and free from the kind of reactionary crap that usually thrives within this topic, I would ask that you define for me the exact moment at which an embryo becomes human, and what measure you used to reach that conclusion.


Frederic Gutknecht IV 10 years, 6 months ago

Palm Beach County Circuit Judge James Carlisle upheld a US$ 109,300 fine. Carlisle and two other circuit judges ruled that eggs had to be what the legislators had in mind when they chose the phrase "unit of marine life." Source: UPI Press Release, March 1990. A sea turtle egg is independent of its mother. How is a turtle egg relevant? Sea turtles are an endangered species because of the massive footprint of the human race, so destroying sea turtle eggs illegal. What's your mumbo jumbo point?

gccs14r 10 years, 6 months ago

Human eggs and sperm are human and alive, they just happen to be haploid organisms. Anyone up for a "Save the Sperm" campaign or for a "rescue" of feminine hygiene products?

Frederic Gutknecht IV 10 years, 6 months ago

Oh, by the way, humans are animals who were not placed here by your Gawd, IMHO. Our government has rules in place to try and keep not so humble opinions out of the law.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"The fact is, abortion is morally wrong."

Morals aren't facts, they're opinions. Guess we're done, huh?

Paul R Getto 10 years, 6 months ago

logicsound says

And for the record, I've never heard a pro-choice person argue that eggs "weren't alive", but rather, they aren't human beings (even though they represent a potential human being).

You said all that needs to be said in this paragraph. Well done.

usesomesense 10 years, 6 months ago

I'm pro-life for me and anti-abortion, but I'm pro-choice for everybody else. But I'm certainly NOT pro-abortion or anti-life (?) for ANYONE - that's up to them. That being said, how long before men are incarcerated for masterbating without donating it to a sperm bank? Wouldn't want to be charged with a MWD! There has long been the question of what a responsible parent should or shouldn't do. It is certain the a fertilized egg has no brain for a certain period of time, and no conciousness whatsoever until some stage of development. It is therefore arguable that life (as we know it) does not exist and abortion at or before this stage is arguably 'prevention'. While abstinence is a wonderful fantasy, it is not, never has been and never will be a legitimate solution. It becomes the responsibility of the prospective parent to determine if a child born unto them will have a reasonable chance at a good life. Our society is alreay heavily burdened with people who can't or won't take care of themselves and those they are responsible for. Children are already born into

"Every Sperm is Sacred" - Monty Python

Rationalanimal 10 years, 6 months ago

I actually think it's amusing how the zealots think it's a victory to get a petition signed.

AskTiller how amusing he thought a few signatures on petition can be.

Rationalanimal 10 years, 6 months ago

What is utterly stunning in all of the liberal posts on here is the comparisons of human life in gestation to poultry eggs. It is no wonder liberals look the other way as doctors perform late terms abortions with economic efficiency.

The fact is, abortion is morally wrong. It is the height of selfishness for a woman to end a human life in gestation because she has a choice. Making it a choice blurs the line between what is moral and agency. The two are not the same. Every human alive began as a fertilized human egg. To say now that since you have successfully passed through gestation (as if it is something you acheived on your own merits) and arrived on the human scene as a result of two people who sacrificed, endured pain, went without, ideally nurtured, ideally loved, and if not, you at least were given the gift of existing however miserable, that you now have the right to limit others because of choice made possible through agency is the grand epitome of solipsitic selfishness. The highest, noblest and greatest duty is to usher in the next generation of human life. To have an abortion betrays the duty incumbent upon each generation to rear the next.

Women who have abortions endure severe guilt, and rightfully so. What they have done betrays the species. They have destroyed what nature inescapably and instinctively tells them to protect. Male humans who support it or perform it are no different than male lions who turn on their own young.

Both should be looked upon narrowly by subsequent generations as those who contributed to the destruction of human life rather than its creation.

Chicken eggs. That is the value liberals place upon human life.

blackwalnut 10 years, 6 months ago

What if all this money and activism were devoted to protecting children already born?

Child abuse and neglect are rampant and there is not enough manpower or money to follow up even on cases that are reported - the tip of the iceberg.

The right-to-life movement is pretty selective in what life they choose to cherish. And they aren't too keen on preventing unwanted pregnancy or holding men accountable.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"When a majority of people's opinion was that slavery was okay, did that make it morally right?"

Clearly, at the time, yes it did. A better question would be: when slavery was finally abolished, was it because of moral outrage, or because our society and economy had reached the point where it could function properly without it?

moo 10 years, 6 months ago


You are correct, what is medically or scientifically true does not necessarily dictate the law. However, I think it should. What I have seen scientifically is what dictates my opinions on many subjects, and thus which legislation I support. The law IS a reflection of the beliefs of the populace, as you say, (often to a small extent) and as a citizen of this country, I am simply stating my opinion on a particular law. I personally believe this law is a bunch of politically-motivated bologna aimed at restricting reproductive rights, but many other laws I do not like have been passed, and perhaps this one will join that list.

As for the this specific case: I did not say an egg was not human, what I said was that it is not a human being, not a person as the law would claim. It is a clump of human tissue with the potential to become a human being. In all likelihood it won't. Most pregnancies end in very early spontaneous abortion. You say that the quality of being human requires a value judgment. I disagree. I think the quality of being a person requires a value judgment. Human means to have 23 pairs of chromosomes and the genetic material that encodes the development of a human being. (I know this gets sticky when you consider genetic disorders and mutations, but lets keep this simple) In this way a fertilized egg is of course human. However, after watching the development of organisms with an almost identical process (yes chickens embryos are almost indistinguishable for a long time, but science has a well-known liberal bias : ) I have made the personal determination that a fertilized egg is not a person. It is a diploid human cell that may go on to divide and if all goes correctly it will one day become a person. It cannot survive without its mother, making it by definition a parasite: a human parasite.

Pinpointing the exact moment when a fetus becomes a person is very difficult, making birth the only clean-cut option. Development is gradual and definition before birth requires the legislature to decide which organ makes a human a person, and at what level of functionality does it do this. I believe that when a fetus has developed enough to survive outside of its mother, enough to be born, that is when it becomes truly a person. Honestly I don't think babies are "people" either as they can't really have complex thoughts, but for legal purposes I do think that as human organisms performing all necessary physical functions to survive, infants are people. Now I realize that this definition is somewhat flawed: as you point out, an infant cannot care for its own needs. However, at this stage in development even if the parents choose not to take care of it, in our society the infant will be cared for other adults (foster parents, etc.).

Your post was also very thought-provoking, thanks for making me consider my opinions more in depth.

Frank Smith 10 years, 6 months ago

Um, if the ballot measure somehow passes (if all those former Haggard buds inveigle their assemblages of finger-waving tithers to support it), does that mean that if a fertility clinic has embryos not wanted by their parents, does the state's child protection service have to take custody of the frozen bits of protoplasm?

For the Right non-Thinkers of the world, this is a serious question as are many others that this idiotic ballot attempt would provoke.

Colorado voters should not be encouraged to pass "The Law of Unintended Consequences."

Lastly, it should be noted that the whackjob fundamentalist ultra-right is determined to get back in power in Colorado. The "R"s are in a one-vote minority in the state House I think, with a centerist and possibly bribed-off, anti-labor, anti-reform Democratic governor. That's not nearly good enough for them. They want to run their theocracy just the way their god intended (and their god is not Mitt Romney's god, as many including Brownback, are anxious to remind us).

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

From what I gather, those who want to equate a human embryo with a human person believe that God puts a soul in a human embryo thus making it a person.

When does this occur? At fertilization? Before? After? When?

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

Why a fertilized egg? Is this when God ensoulates the human embryo, making it a person?

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

"All I said was that it works both ways: If that were true, then those in favor of allowing abortion must also be in favor of allowing capital punishment."

No. I do not think a human embryo is a person, and therefore abortion is not murder.

I am not morally opposed to the death penalty. I am practically opposed to it.

The finality of the punishment coupled with documented cases of error, prejudice, unfair application, and high legal cost in dollars are why I oppose the death penalty.

There are people out there who "deserve" to die. The selection process is flawed, however.

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

When does God place a soul in a human embryo? Is it at fertilizagtion? Is this why this measure is so important?

Left_handed 10 years, 6 months ago

Y'all got the question wrong. It ain't whether a woman gets to have "reproductive freedom" or "choice" or any of that clap-trap. The question is, does what gets aborted constitute human life? When I was in high school, I learned in science class that life begins at conception. If you take DNA from the cells of a day old embryo and have it blind analyzed by a DNA testing lab, they will tell you that the DNA is from a human being. Ergo, abortion kills a living human being. Having established that, the question is, does that human being deserve to live or can his/her life be arbitrarily thrown away in the name of choice, convenience or reproductive freedom? What is the answer?

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

I am mystified. No one seems to know the answer. When does God place a soul into a human such that the mortal coil becomes a person?

Surely those with such strongly-held beliefs can enlighten me.

tvc 10 years, 6 months ago

If your God can kill every first born child, I don't think I will use him as my moral authority.

Frederic Gutknecht IV 10 years, 6 months ago

Dollypawpaw says: You are using the old endangered species trick with humans? They are not endangered so kill away?

Darn! You caught me...the OLD endangered species trick...

Ah, but I was actually using the old tweak the digit with humor trick and you stepped right into it. Hold on. My shoe phone is ringing and I think it's for you. Here.

Dollyasiminatriloba says... It's agent 99. She says you stepped in dog poop.

I think what she actually said is that we're not talking about killing humans and you have poop in your ears.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"While morals may not be "facts" in the same sense as saying Lawrence is in Kansas, they are more than opinion. They are fundamental principles having to do with the nature of right and wrong. Not everyone agrees as to what actions belong in which category, that is true. But just because, say, in the opinion of a pedophile there's nothing wrong with having sex with a child, it is still morally wrong."

Personally, I feel you're simply slighting the power and relevence of opinions. The rest of this is all certainly true. My point was really that "simple fact" and "morally wrong" are paradoxical. You could say "It is a simple fact that I (and, of course, many other people) believe abortion to be morally wrong." That would be a correct statement.

Rationalanimal 10 years, 6 months ago

Thatfemale said

"I'm sure he is slightly amused.

I'm sure Tiller thought it was a big joke the whole time. And since the Kansas Supreme Court has only put it on hold in order to find any possible way to twist out, no harm done. Your point was stupid and betrays your lack of exposure to the legal process, especially when a person faces even the possibility of charges being brought.

As to the chicken and liberals making analogies to them, see beavis' comments below

"But is that truly enough to make a chicken: or a human being? Is the joining of two cells enough? Or is more required?

Think real hard before you answer, Rationalanimal:"

Sorry Eggnostick, I haven't grayed ethics to the point that I no longer can distinguish between chickens and humans, you're on your own in answering this conundrum. I'm sure it will take some "hard thinking" though. And, you're just the fertilized human egg successfully passing through gestation for the job.

Rationalanimal 10 years, 6 months ago

"When a majority of people's opinion was that slavery was okay, did that make it morally right?"

If you apply liberal logic on ethics, yes.

Rationalanimal 10 years, 6 months ago

"Even when we are one day able to stick the fetus in an acrylic womb and bring it to term without a mother, the fetus will still be the same. It is not the idea that a fetus can't survive without the mother that lies at the crux of this argument, but rather the fact that a fetus can't survive without some form of womb/host/closed environment."

Stunning, absolutely stunning. Your lack of humanity speaks for itself. You're logic commits you to killing infants, children, elderly and anyone else who cannot survive without the assistance of others. How merciful of you to "put down" the feable in society o benevolent socialist liberal.

bondmen 10 years, 6 months ago

"It is now an established fact that the DNA in the fertilized ovum bears the code for both human life and individuality which is passed on to every cell in the development of the embryo. Every cell, whether it be blood, brain, skin, liver, heart or any organ at any stage of existence can be typed to identify that particular human being. The important thing to remember is that the fertilized egg or zygote contains all of the genetic material needed to create the fully expressed individual and includes inherent complex encoding for individual human interjection and all the other associated qualities characteristic of human personhood."

"The conceptus is a separate and distinct human being and contains its own 46 individualized chromosomes different from that of the mother throughout all stages of development. They each have a separate circulation, separate organs as brain, heart, kidneys, liver, the same or different blood types, and are of the same or different sex. The conceptus is as much a part of the father as it is of the mother."

"The mother only provides shelter, nutrition and oxygen and does not direct the development of the conceptus. The latter is completely directed by the genetic code of the conceptus."

"Proponents of abortion argue that merely proving that the conceptus is a human being does not make it a human person. My response to them would be likened to that of Hamlet in response to Polonius' question, "What do you read my Lord?" "Words, words, words." The simple fact is that the two terms are inseparable. A human being is a human person, It has a basic Inherent capacity to function rationally but lacks the present immediate capacity to function rationally."

"In 1907, Oliver Wendell Holmes put things in proper perspective when he said "The great act of faith is when a man decides he is not God" and to borrow a phrase from William Shakespeare. "Woe to the hand that shed this costly blood"....the hand(s) that signed the Roe vs Wade Death Warrant."

There is more at:

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

Dollypawpaw "answered": "The rules of Science apply to the fertilized egg up until baptism. Then Science and God co-rules the human being.

How's that."

That is not an answer. In fact I cannot figure out what you are trying to say. How about answering a simple question in plain english without resorting to cryptic speech and half-answers.

When does God place a soul in a human embryo?

Ralph Reed 10 years, 6 months ago

The major thing I don't see in this discussion is any mention of adoption as an option.

Situation. A guy gets a girls pregnant, then ghosts on her. She's young, realizes she's not ready to be a parent, and is scared.

Discussion. The decision is ultimately hers (sometimes forced by her parents) as to whether she keeps the embryo (foetus after 7 to 8 weeks following conception). If she carries the foetus to term and gives birth, and she knows she can't care for the baby and provide for it as the child grows, what are her options? Does she keep the child and let her parents raise it as her sibling? Does she keep the child and raise it as her own while she finishes school? (As a note, I know only a few women who have done this successfully. They were and are stong women, and I respect them for that strength.) What's wrong with her giving the then child up for adoption? The requirements to adopt are more stringent than the requirements to make a baby (everything works, they know what goes where, and there's nothing in the way).

The petition in CO defining a person is an attempt to build towards outlawing abortion outright. If that happens, are the citizens in CO willing to care for the children, adopt them, educate them, provide medical care for them. They should be careful what they ask for, because they might get it. Further, it also sets the groundwork for bringing a second set of charges on somebody, or for, '... getting them one way, when they couldn't get them the other.' Let's say there's a traffic accident and a pregnant woman is driving a car. She rear-ends another car and is at fault for causing the accident. As a result of the accident she spontaneously aborts the foetus (miscarries). Can she now be charged with vehicular manslaughter? I've not read the petition, but from the discussion above it seems that she can be.

(ThatGirl: You're either a solicitor or an advocate, maybe both. Is my question about vehicular manslaughter valid?)

Abortion is a personal matter, grounded in religion and culture. Personally, I do not like abortion for abortion's sake. However, I cannot in good conscience support legislating someone else's decision about her / their life. If the woman decides to abort, then that decision is hers and she must live with it. She should be provided objective information from all sides so she can make her decision. Scare tactics should not be used from any side ("You'll go to He!!", bloody pictures, pictures of starving children, pictures of young girls working in sweatshops because they had a child too early, etc.)

(Maybe Monty Pyhton was prophetic with the song, "Every sperm is sacred.")

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"Well, obviously the economy of the Confederacy was still heavily invested in it."

Of course, and since the economy of the North at the time was no longer invested in it, they could freely oppose the practice. The rest is obvious, ne?

"But your point is valid - morals change. What one group thinks is moral at one time and place is not necessarily what another group thinks moral at another time and place."

The point is deeper than that, in my opinion. Morals are not necessarily simply a view of what people hold to be right or wrong. They are guidelines, reached through consensus, that illuminate and reinforce what the society at the time needs in order to be stable, functional and secure. It's not an overwhelming difference, but it changes the spin on the ball a little, so to speak. The question in my mind is whether or not we can say our society depends on the availability of abortion in order to remain stable. I think an argument can probably be made that it does, at least to some degree. I suppose that what I'm really trying to say is that morals are in some respects a luxury as opposed to a commodity. It was easy for the North to declare slavery morally wrong, as they didn't depend on it. It's easy for us now to say it was morally wrong, and believe me I do, as we no longer depend on it. (Or, perhaps, we do, it's just that the slavery is of a more subtle nature, and largely located outside of the United States) It's easy for people who are not in the grips of poverty or instability to make it a moral issue, as we not likely to be required to sacrifice anything for the sake of our morality, whereas many people in other walks of American life certainly will have to.

"So why are people in Kansas arguing over what people in Colorado want to do?"

Well, moral views don't shift or change without public discussion. Really, though, I think we're mostly arguing here as something to do.

"And what about Roe v. Wade - shouldn't the states get to decide for themselves?"

Perhaps. The problem that I see is that the people who's lives (or livelihoods, perhaps) depend on the availability of abortion are the ones least likely to be able to migrate to where it is acceptable and available. In this issue, though, State's Rights could become sticky as it's not often a simple matter of intrastate issues. National interest groups, seeking conformity, meddle as much as the government does. States rights, though, is probably the best solution at this moment in time. Long term, should the goal be the lessening or removal of abortion, which I feel is certainly a worthy goal, I still believe that the best method is reinforcing existing alternatives, and developing new ways to keep people from needing an abortion in the first place.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

Answer 2nd part, note the transition from issues of slavery to issues of abortion in last few lines. Sorry for any confusion.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

Dollypaw says "The rules of Science apply to the fertilized egg up until baptism. Then Science and God co-rules the human being. How's that."

So, morally, we can abort a baby until it's baptized? 27th trimester abortions might get a little messy.

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"Terri Schiavo? What did she do to "justify" taking her life?"

Well, for one thing, she died first.

sfjayhawk 10 years, 6 months ago

I think abortion is a bad thing, but also believe that its none of my business - and definitely none of the governments business - to tell others what to think or do - so am I anti aborton or pro choice - or both?

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"The basics of this difficulty is that the EEG has trouble recording the electrical signal of the fetus through the many layers of the mother's tissue as well as the amniotic tissue. Due to this, I'm pretty sure that the only way to measure this activity is on fetuses which are no longer located in the placenta."

Or you could try and install a window. Just a small one, ya'know.

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

The strength of conviction displayed here by anti-abortionists suggests that they know the exact moment when God places a soul in the human body thus making it a person. Yet, none of them are willing or able to share this information with the rest of us.

Please, tell us the precise moment that God places a soul into te human body thus making it a person.

BTW I was doing my parents taxes at 10 weeks.

Rationalanimal 10 years, 6 months ago

Thatfemale said:

"My 3 years of law school and 6 years of practice must be betraying me."

And I bet you win every motion and argument by showing up and telling the judge you're a law school graduate and have six years of practice under your belt. Three years of law school and six years of practice mean very little, especially if you need to wear that on your sleeve for validity. If you are in fact a lawyer then you realize how dumb your original comment was.

Eggnostik said:

"Life begins at conception, but that doesn't make it "human." It becomes human, over time, a time of development, of wonder, and most of all: a time of luck. Nothing is guaranteed."

Apparently it didn't take you long to solve the chicken and human riddle. Please bless us all with your profound conclusions.

I suppose now that you're on the human scene it is luck, survival of the womb's fittest. You dodged the scapel in your mother's womb whereas the other lesser fertilized eggs weren't so lucky. You're the brightest and best of all the other fertilized eggs Egg--a credit to the human race. What would we ever do without you now that you're here. You are the most special person in all the world, a wonder, incredible, a marvel, number one, me, me, me.

Rationalanimal 10 years, 6 months ago

logicsound said:

"Even when we are one day able to stick the fetus in an acrylic womb and bring it to term without a mother, the fetus will still be the same. It is not the idea that a fetus can't survive without the mother that lies at the crux of this argument, but rather the fact that a fetus can't survive without some form of womb/host/closed environment."

Rational responded:

"Stunning, absolutely stunning. Your lack of humanity speaks for itself. You're logic commits you to killing infants, children, elderly and anyone else who cannot survive without the assistance of others. How merciful of you to "put down" the feable in society o benevolent socialist liberal."

I take your silence as assent.

erod0723 10 years, 6 months ago

Life begins at birth, not in the womb. Everybody's birthdate is the day they were born, and that legally signifies their first day alive.

bondmen 10 years, 6 months ago

If you are always in search of good reasoning and informative, up to date information on important, meaningful topics I recommend three people at three places:

Good background information on cloning, embryos, bioethics and life's fragility in our dangerous culture, read an article penned by Wesley J. Smith .

For the best and most thorough current arguments in favor of life (and against abortion) read Greg Koukl . For our liberal friends, Greg's comments on clear thinking and effective arguments would be most useful but alas, probably not heeded.

On religions in general and Christianity in particular watch this interview of John Warwick Montgomery .

Frederic Gutknecht IV 10 years, 6 months ago

How old is someone born on February 29th, 1980?

Old enough to be able to figure out how our calendar works...???

The JJE007 Calendar declares that second following12:59:59 p.m. on the 28th of February to begin the 29th of February. Thus all 29ths of February are either one second long or one second longer (in a Leap Year) than all days, except for the 28th of February, which is one second shorter than all days but the Leap Year 29th of February, which is two seconds longer than all February 28ths.

Oh, and happy Bertha Bluster day, in case I miss the artificial anniversary of your initial breath of life in this world!~)

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

Still no answer. Why the fear of answering this question? When does God place a soul in the human tissue thus imbuing it with personhood?

Navel-gazing rationalization such as "a human is a human and can be no other thing" won't do. This measure would equate a fertilized human egg with the status of a person.

When does God put the soul into the embryo (or sperm and eggs?) thus making it a person?

lawrenceofkansas 10 years, 6 months ago

Soon I will be able to sell life insurance to "fertilized egg" by the dozen in Colorado.

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

"Uh - nightmare - I'd hate to point out the obvious here, but you seem to be the only one talking about souls in the first place, and the only one defining humanness by the addition of a soul."

Are you saying that humanness is not defined by having a soul? If not, when does this soul enter the human vessel?

If so, at what point does a human person form, and why do you judge it to be this point?

Again, rationalizations such as "a human embryo can be nothing more or less than a human" is not convincing or correct. A human embryo is a human embryo. When does a human life become a person? Why do you think this? Explain.

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

My suspicion is that like most ideologues, there is a fear to explore the truth and reality of their beliefs because they might not match. Or, there is a deliberate masking of the basis of their beliefs because they know they do not hold up to reality and empirical observation.

Thus the hesitancy to answer my simple little questions...

Frederic Gutknecht IV 10 years, 6 months ago

Dotslines says... I was merely pointing out the foolishness of defining humanity according to a date printed on a birth certificate.

I understood that. We all have foolishness to bear and ridicule!~) It's almost like we're ALL foolish. Nah... ?


By the way, this notion of humanity and its possible intersection will a "soul" does seem to be at the base of the vitriol in the abortion argument. Otherwise all human(e?) on human gentility would seem to be conspecific courtesy, and a desire to keep the beast in our hearts from blood-lusting anger; which would leave all "legitimate" destruction of identifiable, or presumably unique, human genetic material to governments.

I'm not saying that a fertilized egg or a fetus or a child that knows no evil is necessarily "human". I'm not even saying that an adult homonid of our species is human. That "human" term always seems to have an angel on its shoulder, not to mention that blood-lusting devil inhabiting its other.

All I know is the notion that a soul arrives by stork, angel or Mind of God and is placed in some protoplasm or entity at some point during its development seems like a ludicrous sprookjesachtig, whatever that means!~)

If we are ordained and then manifest then we are ordained and manifest. If not, then can I finish my test and recess?~) We're just plain old social animals as far as I can see, torn between our necessary selfishness and altruism. I've got an idea. why don't y'all stay out of my body! Don't worry about assimilating or indoctrinating citizens while they're still in utero. What happens in uterus... Anyway, you have no right to sperm, unfertilized or fertilized eggs, blastulae, fetuses, with or without nervous tissue or electrical activity, toes, fingers, button noses, scarlet cup ears , etcetera...and "NO! You cannot have my homunculi!, y' b@$+@^d$!~)"

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"Because there is an objective and measurable line for where a person's life begins-at birth."

There are really two that you can use, depending on your perspective, with no ambiguity involved. At birth or at conception. Both are clear cut defining stages in the making of a baby, per se. Clearly, though, neither are particularly ideal in terms of practical application. Thus, other methods of delineation have to be found. My, I throw my vote in for self-sustainability. If a fetus can be removed and survive, it's a baby. We can even help it live with the technology we've developed. Hell, maybe we can get to the point, with proper initiative, where babies can be removed from the womb on conception if desired and grown in incubators. Of course, that's kind of creepy.

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

This "when a dog becomes a dog" argument is simply more casuistry and navel-gazing rationalization. We are not talking about cows or dogs here. We are talking about humans.

Indeed the same argument could be made about these organisms in the absence of a soul.

When does a dog become a dog? A cow a cow? Please tell me.

It does not even help the argument (if there is even one that is admitted to).

The answer is "no one knows for sure the exact moment". Which is why it is ridiculous to define a fertilized egg as a human being with all of the legal rights thereof.

Or does God put a soul in there? If so, when does that soul enter? Why are you afraid to answer?

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

Funny all of these christians on this thread turning their backs on God's placement of a soul in the human embryo.

Why is this? Are you ashamed of your religion?

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"all of these christians on this thread"

You're being overly assumptive. I don't, scrolling up, see any self-proclaimed Christians on this thread at this time. Not everyone who can or will make an argument against abortion is a Christian, or does so for religious reasons.

Rationalanimal 10 years, 6 months ago

" might have found the reasons why my line of logic does not require 'every' person who requires assistance in living to be put down."

So, in your compassionate and benevolent universe where the right to life turns on assistance, who among the class of people needing assistance makes the cut and who is to be "put down"? Look, I'm just pointing out what your logic commits you to, don't get TO'd at me. It's the fallacy of your logic as is obvious even to you based on the ends it leads to that needs reevaluation. Surely you can rescue the soundness of your logic if indeed it is sound.

Thatfemale said:

"No baby, I win most of my motions because I know how to formulate a logical argument. My only point was this-it's obvious you're not a lawyer, so don't try to act like one."

Your objective in saying you have three years of legal education and six years of practice in defending your original dumb comment was to let me know I am "not a lawyer and to not act like one." I'm beginning to see your trademark legal modus operandi--make so little sense that the judge and opposing attorneys think you couldn't possibly not know what you're talking about. You're like a three year old saying one new dumb thing to cover the last. Shovel, digging, shovel, digging.

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 6 months ago

"You're being overly assumptive. I don't, scrolling up, see any self-proclaimed Christians on this thread at this time. Not everyone who can or will make an argument against abortion is a Christian, or does so for religious reasons."

Possibly, but I doubt it. I have had other experiences with posters on this thread, and many of them are self-proclaimed christians.

It puzzles me why they are hiding it here, why they fail to explain the exact point at which God places a soul in the human form to generate a human person.

A fertilized egg is not a human being/person; it is a human embryo.

There are good arguments to made that a third trimester fetus is a human being/person.

When this happens in between, who knows? This is why I (and many other conservatives) support reasonable restirctions on late term abortions.

Or maybe I am wrong and a human form becomes a person when God inserts a soul? When does this happen?

Frederic Gutknecht IV 10 years, 6 months ago

When did you begin? Were you invented by another? Are you from your mother and your father? When did you take your body? When did you take your singular soul? In fact, you're quite everlasting in a sense, Always have been. Nothing has been created or lost. The body, a simple beast, comes and goes like the beasts, like days. A soul is what is shared with you, a realization of sharing. A piece of soul resides in all forms. A piece resides in the beasts of the field. A piece resides in the furnace of a body's creation, Too small to think alone grow or think without the body's time. That is until they are born into the realm of a new consciousness. We do not understand that there is no horror and death beyond the beast. We do not comprehend the insignificance of death. We do not appreciate the sharing. Carry on in your form. Do not worry. Carry on. Soon you will be free and without outline. The power has been shared with the lives of beasts. It is there until its sharing is understood in the body of the lesson ...............................and returned.

Wait! It's not Friday! Never mind...

Frederic Gutknecht IV 10 years, 6 months ago

think alone or grow without

i think


the top of my head is earthly flat

Rationalanimal 10 years, 6 months ago

Female editor and chief said:

"Pathetic, troll, pathetic, troll."

Impressive defense.

Eggnostik said

"Your criteria certainly suggests itself over here:

Agnostick agnostick@excite.c http://www.uscentrist.o http://www.americanplan.o"

Wow, you shamed me. Stick with the chicken and human conundrum Egg, logic and facts may blow your mind. Never forget, you're the most special fertilized egg to make it through the gestation gauntlet of chance.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.