Sometimes I read something that I simply can’t ignore. So I am responding. The original article is printed in black italic, my response in blue.
The Privileged Hype
Hype v Hypothesis
Wherein words matter and a hypothesis is “a supposition or proposed explanation made on the basis of limited evidence as a starting point for further investigation.”
Fetuses aren’t babies. Yet people will go out of their way to be rude, crude, and murderous on behalf of the hype that fetuses are babies.
I have a deep desire not to ever be rude, crude, or murderous, but this really triggered me. Since I have borne in my body four incredible fetuses who grew into fascinating babies, then morphed into curious children and have since transformed into amazing adults, I can’t agree. Obviously, the zygote, the embryo, and the fetus are only a few of the stages of human growth, but without those, a person cannot come into being. I sincerely want to know when you think the transition occurs from fetus to baby, because it is hard to define, but you didn’t address that. It occurs to me that your statement that “fetuses aren’t babies” may be a hypothesis based on limited evidence, so let’s investigate it.
As I’m sure we have all heard many times, the vast majority of babies born at 27 weeks gestation do survive outside the womb, and even a few born as early as 24 weeks make it. So maybe it would be reasonable to set a time somewhere during that stage as the point where the fetus becomes a baby? I have heard the opinion that a baby doesn’t actually achieve personhood until they can survive on their own. And since no newborn can possibly do that, it creates a problem. Some feel a full-term newborn baby isn’t a person, either. I know there are thinking people who have proposed that up until around two years of age, a child isn’t truly a person, and infanticide should be allowed until then, but most people aren’t on board with that idea. Hopefully anyone who has ever had the pleasure of knowing a one-year-old child is not okay with that.
So I guess the question I keep coming back to is this: When does a fetus become a baby? Considering the wide range of gestational ages at which humans are born, it’s a conundrum. It’s really a lot like asking when a baby becomes a toddler or a boy becomes a man. Yes, you can look back and say that it has happened, but can you actually pinpoint the moment at the time?
Would you say that fetus becomes a baby only when he/she comes out of the mother? Or perhaps when they first begin to breathe? Does a child have to be breathing without medical support in order to be an actual baby? Our advances in medicine have led into some rather difficult questions. And those questions are important, because they define what is murder (infanticide) and what isn’t. Does the child have to be wanted by its mother in order to be considered a baby?
Alabama’s anti abortion legislation is a real death threat to thousands of women who live in Alabama, and because it’s a push to overturn Roe, it’s a death threat to hundreds of thousands of women across fifty states. So the odds are, you’ll get death threats if you’re championing a bill that is near genocide in proportion.
I’m not trying to be contentious, but to me, this is true hyperbole. In what way exactly are these hundreds of thousands of women being massacred? They are not. Are you insinuating that any woman who conceives a baby she doesn’t want is as good as dead? Because that is just… degrading! As if these women’s lives are completely over, simply because they made a mistake or were raped? Doesn’t this completely negate all your supposed admiration of “strong” women? A strong woman will deal ably and equitably with the results of her mistakes, and a really strong woman can learn to overcome injustice and abuse that has been done to her. I’m not saying that it’s easy–not by a long shot!–but I am saying that you are severely underestimating the strength of the human female.
Seven knows that the anti abortion advocates compare abortion to genocide.
I don’t know what “Seven” means here, but a scenario where humans die is a fairly appropriate comparison to genocide. You just compared to genocide another scenario, one where humans do not have to die.
“Lot’s of my good friends are pro choice.”
Lots of his good friends? How can they be friends? How can they set aside a difference that is nearly as powerful as an atom bomb?
It’s nice and all that people can set aside their petty differences to be friends. At the same time, when those differences directly and adversely effect the lives of millions of people, you can’t just set down to cake by the ocean after that. … If they see me colluding with the enemy..
You sort of blew my mind here. So if we disagree, we cannot be friends? I am stunned by that. And very sorry. I have always thought of you as a friend. I certainly don’t want to be your enemy.
Of course, I don’t understand why you think of this issue as atomic bomb-sized, either. It IS a matter of life and death, to me anyway, but so are many other things that I disagree with people on. And life does go on. From your point of view, it’s not life or death at all, since you don’t seem to view a fetus as life. It’s about quality and difficulty of life, yes, but not actual death. So what makes it atomic to you?
If you do, then, either it’s not a real conviction, or, you don’t understand the arguments. If you believe in God, fine, I can set aside that difference. I have to, or else I would have no conversations. As long as you’re not hugely into God then we probably hang out.
I’m fairly certain my conviction is real. I’m fairly certain I understand the arguments. And though I am hugely into God, I don’t have to talk about him all the time. Can we be friends? I appreciate your thought process, and it is always helpful for me to consider all sides of an issue.
Back to your original title… I do realize how very privileged I am. I assume that you do, too. I have never been the recipient of an unwanted pregnancy, or even an unplanned one. But I know quite a lot of women who have. And I know that women can be very strong. And I know that you know that, too. I’m just begging you to recognize that–to retract the death sentence which you have proclaimed over unintentional mothers and instead encourage them to stand strong in confidence and dignity. They can be victors rather than victims. Let’s give them less hype and more hope. Because the words we speak over people… matter.