Thursday, April 9, 2009


So here's where I show my conservative roots.

I'm Pro-Life.

Yes, that's right, I'm anti-choice. Anti-abortion.

I believe life begins at conception, and should be protected at implantation as much as possible.

Women have a choice. To not have sex. To try something called birth control.

To say, "its not fair that men don't have to carry the baby..." blah blah blah. Its not fair. Its nature. Tough. There's always adoption.

But Pro-Life goes beyond just abortion.

The consistent life ethic, or seamless garment, or even total pro-life standpoint is about supporting life from birth to death.

That's why I'm also against torture and rendition. And unjust wars.

From wikipedia's consistent life ethic entry:

This viewpoint was especially emphasized by Pope John Paul II in his encyclical, 'Evangelicum Vitae' (1995). In it he emphasized the value and inviolability of human life. In the United States, several organizations have promoted the "consistent ethic of life" approach, including both Catholic groups (e.g., the National Conference of Catholic Bishops), and broader coalitions, such as Consistent Life, founded in 1987 as the Seamless Garment Network. The ethic and its organizational expressions are difficult to define in terms of the conventional U.S. political spectrum, since those who subscribe to the ethic are often at odds with both the right wing over capital punishment, war, and economic issues, as well as the left wing over abortion, embryo-destructive research, and euthanasia.


Dave Miller said...

The seamless garment issue has always been difficult for religious conservatives who want to preserve the sanctity of life for the unborn, while at the same time, eschewing that POV for others.

Either life is sacred, or it is not.

Even a life lived, shall we say, badly, is sacred, isn't it?

Susannah said...

Seamless garment is a nice phrase, though there are a few snags. You're right, Dave, I'm one who remains conflicted about capital punishment, to a small degree. The snag revolves around the issue of innocence. The unborn are innocent. The convicted murderer is not.

Consider my mother-in-law's best friend (a VERY liberal Dem.), whose daughter was raped & murdered by a serial killer.(True. Happened in NC in 1990.) While these parents admit that the death sentence did not bring back their dau., the sentence was 'gratifying' (for lack of a more delicate term), in that their dau.'s murderer would get what he deserved.

Katherine's life was just as sacred as her attacker's. Scripture tells us to abide by the laws of our land. This guy had 'due process', fair trial, all that. In that way, scripture was followed. The laws of our land provide a death sentence as LEGAL remedy for the rape/murder of Katherine. In that way, scripture was followed also.

SPIRITUAL remedy is altogether another matter. I absolutely believe that Jesus died for all, even that guy sitting on death row who raped & murdered Katherine. The provision for spiritual redemption is available to this man, regardless of the legal claims on his life.

It's the innocence/guilt issue relative to the law-of-the-land. (Yes, I know abortion is legal. But why should an innocent die, such that another can live conveniently? I know it's not always convenience which guides the decision to abort. But largely, it is...)

That's how I sort it all out, at least to this point in my life. Not trying to troll, just trying to have an honest discussion.

James Wolfer said...

Susannah, you are welcome to comment here anytime you like. And you aren't trolling. Thanks for your comment.

Time said...

The simple act of banning anything eliminates choice, which diminishes freedom.
What about the choice of those who simply disagree with your position?
Should your position (no matter how heart felt, honest and passionate it is) be the justification for taking away someone else's right to their choice?
Should we force a woman to carry and deliver a child due to rape?

A few States have now stopped their capitol punishments, not because they find that sentence immoral, but because they have found that a few put to death, were innocent. The State has found that a few convicted murders are innocent.

There is a difference between the moral implications of a decision made by the State (which speaks for all of us) and a decision by an individual that affects only that individual.

Having a difference of opinion about the definition of life, is not a legal justification to stop their right to choose what is best for them.

James Wolfer said...

But to those that believe life starts in the womb instead of at birth, it is murder.

Should we allow someone to murder someone if it makes them feel better? Why do we limit their choice in murdering?

What about a smaller issue, Time?

What about those that would like the choice to drive 100 miles per hour. By making that illegal aren't we also diminishing their freedom?

In terms of abortion you are also taking away the choice of the infant. If the mother doesn't want to be a mother due to rape or incest, there are plenty of people looking to adopt. Just give Angelina a call.

Time said...

It's an opinion when life starts. Your opinion is rejected by the majority of the American people and the Supreme Court of the United States.
I agree with the current law because it allows choice and sets limits on protecting the unborn.
That is the kind of compromise that fits a free society respecting differing opinions.
I would call forcing a woman to have a child due to rape, cruel punishment.

Susannah said...

Thanks, James. You make me feel welcome. Good call on speaking up for the rights of an unborn infant.

About something 'smaller'. How about the right of someone to "choose" smoking? That limits the freedom of someone to choose something for themselves...What about the choice NOT to wear a seatbelt or a helmet? Those are certainly choices that do no harm to anyone but the individual person...I'm not a smoker & always use my seatbelt - because I've made choices for my own life (following Time's logic). And yet, the gov't feels entitled to tell me what to do/how to do it w/ these things. I ask, who's going to speak for the unborn's right to live in the face of a woman's right to choose not to be pregnant? Believe me, I've lived thru 3 VERY difficult pregnancies - would have died each time were it not for the blessing of modern medicine, thanks be to God. I understand what an inconvenience pregnancy can be & is for some. But someone else's right to live in this world is at stake. That, IMO supercedes a woman's right to choose HOW she'll live her own life. Like James said, there's always adoption.

Susannah said...

Oh, and it makes no difference whatsoever what gov't or the supreme court says about 'when life begins'. If you've ever seen the beating heart of your own 7-week-gestation embryo on ultrasound, you'd be hard pressed to tell yourself (or your wife) that the baby isn't alive. Or suffer the loss of a baby at that time & tell your wife that the baby 'wasn't alive anyway...'

Good night, all~

Susannah said...

One more thing... the whole problem w/ Roe v. Wade was that "the majority of the American people" never even got to "choose" (Time's logic again) on the issue. It NEVER should have become law by the Supreme Court. It should have been a state-by-state decision, made only by voters, not the judiciary. That's why we have separation of powers, so that Judges don't get to make laws not 'vetted' by the people.

okay ~ bye

TAO said...

I would like to believe that all of us lived with the concept of 'a seamless garment' and that life does begin at conception, and that all life is a gift to be cherished regardless of who is doing the living or how they are living.

Until we can be 110% sure that every person put to death is truly guilty then the death penalty needs to be stopped.

I remember as a young man being told by my parents that having sex and getting a girl pregnant would ruin MY future and MY life...

I think it might have been better if they had said, having sex and getting a girl pregnant will create life and YOU are not prepared for such responsibility.

Of course it was years later when I realized that I was not born premature.....and I always wondered if my parents were talking about their lives...

Shaw Kenawe said...

I've always advocated free and universal birth control. That would eliminate a lot of abortions.

Life is not perfect. If we accept the deaths of pregnant women, fetuses, and living babies from wars, just and unjust, I don't understand the double standard in people who are so adamantly opposed to abortion. I have listened to the conservative right talk about nuking the militant terrorist Muslims in the Middle East, which would mean killing pregnant women, fetuses and living babies, but these same people are militantly opposed to abortion. Doesn't make sense to me.

I also would like to know what your opinion is on the 9 year old child in Brazil whose step-father raped her and impregnated her with twins. Her mother had the embryos aborted and the Catholic Church ex-communicated her and the doctor.

Would you force a 9 year old child to complete this pregnancy that could possibly kill her? What about a woman with 2 small children who finds she has cancer during a third pregnancy and is told the continuation of the pregnancy because of hormone issues, would kill her, leaving her living children motherless? [This has happened.] Your choice and that mother's choice might differ, but should the state make the decision for that family?

Emilee said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
James Wolfer said...

Personally, I believe that saving the mother is better than letting both the mother and the fetus die. If you can save one, do it. If that means aborting one, then so be it.

I just hate the "convenience" factor and the "choice" part frustrating.

In issues of rape/incest rape, there is always the morning after pill. If you don't take that and suddenly decide after you've been pregnant for awhile that you can't handle it, well then, tough.

James Wolfer said...

I accidently posted under my wife's google account...came home and didn't realize she was signed on still...oops!

Shaw Kenawe said...

So if I understand you correctly, you can condone abortions in certain cases. And that is a reasonable position. I, too, think that using abortion as birth control is reprehensible, therefore, my proposal to allow for free birth control. It is better than using abortion for that reason.

But just as we have to accept the deaths of innocents in just and unjust wars, we have to accept that life is complicated, messy, and unjust as well. We cannot let the state decide what is best for a woman in something as personal and life-altering as an abortion.

People who believe in the sanctity of life must be totally against all wars, just and unjust. This is a difficult position to take, especially if one's country is attacked without provocation--we believe people have the right to defend their country. So absolutism cuts both ways, and, in my view is untenable. There are always horrid circumstances that must allow difficult choices.

James Wolfer said...

Yes, I can condone it especially in cases where if the abortion wasn't done both the mother and the child would die.

In the case of the girl in Brazil: She was nine years old. The doctors made that choice for her because they believed she would most likely have died to carry those children to term. In that case, I do not judge the poor little girl. I condemn the father that raped her. I condemn the Vatican for excommunicating her and not her father.

She is nine years old.

Pamela D. Hart said...

Blogger TAO said...

I think it might have been better if they had said, having sex and getting a girl pregnant will create life and YOU are not prepared for such responsibility.

Tao: I have a 16 year old and I’m going to tell him what YOU said. My husband and I speak with our son about sex and the ramifications, however, I don’t think we said it quite like that. Using the words “creating life” are profound. I’m very open with my children and have good relationships with them. But I’m embarrassed I didn’t think to use those enlightening words.

Toad734 said...

While I respect the concept of someone who is prolife also respecting the life of brown people in other countries I have to disagree with the premis that life begins at conception because it doesn't.

I mean, if you don't ever want to have an abortion Ill support you on that but if you count what the joining of two cells as "life" then you shoudln't be eating plants, vegtables or meat either because those are far more complex forms of life than a zygote or blastocyst.

I agree that after the first trimester there is a nervous system and a heart beat and I agree that if someone should be able to make the decesion by that point weather or not to have an abortion. But as the gun nuts say, if you let them take away fully automatic street sweepwer with armor piercing bullets from 9 year olds the next thing you know they will be going door to door taking rifles away from hunters.

What I am saying is that it has the potential to start an avalanche of right trampling that women just got in the last decade.

And how does any man think he knows whats best for a womans life or private parts?

You have a point, if you don't want to get pregnant don't have risky sex but I know plenty of people who have been safe and still gotten pregnant. Sex is a part of life and part of nature, you can't stop it, its going to happen and mistakes are going to be made. So you really think the best option for everyone is that a 16 year old who lives in the projects should be having babies? Statistics say that the chances are high that that kid will end up on death row anyway not to mention ruin the mothers life and any chance she had at getting out so I can say that I am prolife for the 16 year old girl becuase her life is exactly what you take away when you outlaw abortion.

Personally I am prochoice, pro death penalty or anything else that keeps traffic moving.