Thursday, July 25, 2013

Guest Post - How Being Anti-Abortion Is Like Being Anti-Slavery: An appeal to the Pro-Life movement

As I mentioned Tuesday, I was going to be the day I announced a hiatus from blogging to give more time to preparing for my upcoming wedding...then my good friend and fellow blogger The JC_Freak posted two great articles for his blog on the subject of abortion.  Today I am happy to feature the second.

As a strongly pro-life individual, I am always pleased to pass along a simple, well articulated statement of how to properly debate with a Pro-Choicer.

I am not the kind of person who is frustrated when my opponent makes a point that I am not prepared for. My reaction is usually, "Huh. I should research that." But what really grinds my gears is when an ally makes a really bad point.

I'm sure as fellow pro-lifers you can empathize with that. Here we are, trying to stop people from killing babies, and somehow we are treated as horrible people. With a vast majority of the media on one side, all they have to do is quote any pro-life advocate that misspeaks, or when a stupid person who happens to be pro-life... well speaks. This is why it is incredibly important for us to really focus on messaging, because there are millions of lives that count on us communicating our message well.

So I propose a two piece plan. First of all, we need to associate ourselves with a historical movement which was not only successful, but recognized as a good thing by the general public, as well as one that we have a legitimate association with. And lo and behold this isn't that difficult: slavery.

So similarities between Pro-Life and Abolitionism:
  • Both have to do with human rights. At the end of the day, that is all that we are fighting for: that the rights of a particular group of humans is recognized and respected. And not just the right to speak or anything like that, but the right to be treated as human beings.

  • Both have to confront dehumanization. I want to make it perfectly clear that I do not think that being Pro-Choice is anything like being Pro-Slavery. Abortion and slavery are very different institutions, and thus the defences for them are very different. That said, since both abolition and Pro-life are based on recognizing a group's humanity, opposition to us must include why that group isn't fully human. This means that we can look to how such dehumanization was combated in the 19th century, and see if any of it is translatable. And of course maintain the campaign of showing people how these children really are children through pictures and other such means.
  • Both are religiously motivated. I am not ashamed of this, but it is important to point out how religion plays a role in this debate. It is because the issue which really divides the two sides is whether or not an unborn child is human, and defining what a human is outside of religious circles is difficult. Indeed, the very notion of human rights was founded by religious circles, and it is questionable whether the concept can really survive when societies shift to secularism. But philosophy aside, when we are accused about being overly religious, we can look back and point out how important religion was to the abolitionists.

  • Both are driven by an uncompromising ethic. It is as difficult to compromise on the killing of children as it is to compromise on men, women, and children living in chains. Which means that we should be the first who are appalled by sex-trafficking, bigotry, and all denials of humanity that exist around the world. Don't let the liberals own those issues. Those should be our issues.

  • Both are movements championed by the Republican Party. Just saying. 
Right now the Pro-Choice movement gets a lot of distance by connecting itself to the feminist movement. We really should be using the same kind of rhetoric since we are really grounded in the same tradition as the abolitionists. So let us celebrate that heritage and proclaim it. 
The second piece of the plan is to stay on message. We are about human rights. The unborn child has rights. That's it. Any objection, and I mean "any", can and should be answered from that basic viewpoint. 
PC: What about in the case of rape?
PL: Does that justify killing the offspring?
PC: What if the mother's life were in danger?
PL: Yes, she also has the right to life. We don't ignore the women, and therefore there is not simple answer, but such a question should recognize that both lives are equally precious.
PC: It is the woman's body?
PL: There are two person's bodies in question here. Both should be respected
Just this simple rule would prevent us from saying anything dumb. Nothing more needs to be said. The argument stands for itself. If the conversation shifts to why is the child human, than that is exactly where we want it to go! Focus all of our energy on that one point. The Pro-Life movement stands or falls on that point. Therefore let it!

Thank you.

The JC_Freak's blog can be read at each week.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Guest Post - Abortion Is Not About Equality: An appeal to the Pro-Choice movement

Today was going to be the day I announced a hiatus from blogging to give more time to preparing for my upcoming wedding...then my good friend and fellow blogger The JC_Freak posted two great articles for his blog on the subject of abortion.  Today I am happy to feature the first.

As a strongly pro-life individual, I am always pleased to pass along a simple, well articulated statement of what the Pro-Life movement really believes.

OK, a couple of caveats. I don't want to be deceitful, so I'll come right out and say that I am Pro-Life and I am sure that affects how I view Pro-Choice rhetoric. But, to any Pro-Choice person out there, please don't reject my point here until I have actually stated it, because I may not be saying what you think I will be saying.

First of all, I completely acknowledge that it is proper to understand the Pro-Choice movement as defending rights, specifically women's rights. What I reject is the idea that just because we are dealing with women's rights that we are therefore dealing with equality. In reality, we are dealing with a moral issue that happens to only directly affect women.

Here is where I think you (that is pro-choice people) have a point. In most contexts, a person has the right to decide what medial procedures will and will not be done to them. The government should not have the right to say that a smoker who develops lung cancer should just deal with the cancer because it is the natural consequences of their choices. In fact, I think we pro-lifers actually undercut our message when our arguments seem to ignore this.

However, there are other notable exceptions to this: suicide and drugs for instance. I would also include prostitution here, though it isn't a medical procedure. But it is still true that there are exceptions to the idea that we are allowed to do whatever we want with our own bodies. It is also important to note that the above activities are illegal for both men and for women. It is not gender specific.

And, quite frankly, neither is the illegality of abortion. The fact that it only influences woman is a consequence of biology, not patriarchy. Any Pro-Life person would equally abhor a man killing a fetus if he were pregnant; it just only happens in movies. The morality of the thing falls on our belief that the fetus is a human being and thus should have human rights. I want the full rights and privileges of the mother to be maintained in tension with the full rights and privileges of the child.

But here is the Pro-Life position, and I'll wrap it up really tight so that there is no confusion: fetuses are children. To me, the distinction between a fetus and a newborn is no different than a newborn and a toddler. Morally they are equivalent. So in a nutshell, we want human rights for fetuses. That is it. Period.

I regret that making abortion illegal will force a long term medical situation on the mother, and that is not shallow regret. I really regret it. It is a horrible thing to force on someone, especially since pregnancy shouldn't be something horrible. It is the most beautiful thing in the world, and I hate the fact that it can become something ugly in a woman's life because it was forced on her. That is appalling to me. But so is killing children.

And that is what we are against: killing children whether by men or women. This particular means is only biologically available to women, so naturally restricting it would only affect women. Thus, it is legitimately a matter of women's rights: how should the mother's rights and the child's rights be resolved when they are in direct conflict? That is a very difficult question, but it has nothing to do with mean at all, and thus has nothing to do with equality or inequality. I believe that equality is a very important thing, and tying abortion into the category of equality both waters down the word, and can hinder legislation that is truly about equality under the law between men and women. This issue is a separate issue, and should be kept separate.

Thank you for your consideration.

The JC_Freak's blog can be read at each week.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

If Zimmerman hadn't shot...

Just hypothesizing here...
Can anyone legitimately, honestly tell me this isn't precisely what would have happened if George Zimmerman had not defended himself?

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Reactions to Zimmerman Verdict

On Saturday night, a jury in Florida pronounced George Zimmerman not guilty on all charges.

The reactions are pretty much expected from the Left -- "FLORIDA IS CLEARLY RACIST!"  Of course, the individuals in question seem to only get their news from MSNBC and CNN -- who continue to feature increasingly younger photos of Trayvon Martin to continue to promote the falsehood that Trayvon was an innocent, 13 year old boy and not a 17 year old pseudo gang-banger. (I'm still waiting for a picture of Travon in a diaper or swaddled in an infant-sized blue blanket.)

The evidence -- which has been largely ignored by the Drive-By Media -- shows a story where Zimmerman was getting the living tar beat out of him by Trayvon and then shot in self defense. The Drive-By Media also ignored the fact that innocent little Trayvon was suspended from school three times for infractions including being found with drug paraphernalia and a bag with marijuana residue, once for vandalism and being caught with presumably stolen women's jewelry, and once for truancy. He was also reported to attempted to assault a bus driver.  Not exactly the bright eyed little boy presented as having freshly outgrown playing with action figures.

Despite frequent race-baiting by the Left, it looks like George Zimmerman's story was actually true -- Trayvon attacked Zimmerman and after Trayvon had beaten Zimmerman thoroughly, Zimmerman fired his gun to save his life.  The simple fact that Zimmerman had suffered severe trauma to the back of his head and a broken nose while Trayvon Martin's only injuries were bruised and bloody knuckles and a gunshot would means that the forensics back up Zimmerman's story.

I strongly suspect that if Zimmerman was a black man and Trayvon a white boy -- despite the way the Left race-baits -- there would be no trial. The Media would have actually...oh I don't know...REPORTED the forensic evidence months ago...there would have been a very different reaction from those who claim racism. Then again, people like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton will always jump to claim racism to ensure their own continued relevancy.

The reality of the situation is that -- surprisingly -- a jury of George Zimmerman's peers found him not guilty on all charges and accepted that Zimmerman did act in self-defense rather than racism.  In short, justice was served.

Now the Drive-By Media is dying to make this into a race-riot in line with the Rodney King story in 1991 -- because if we don't keep the race-baiting going in a case that had no racial overtones, how will Democrats get elected?

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Liberal Rhetoric 101: Get Things Done!

"Those obstructionist Republicans -- they won't let President Obama get things done!"

This common cry from the Left...blaming the lack of progress in our nation on Republicans who won't just go along with President Obama's agenda...because it would so totally work if we just let him do it!

Let's set aside for a moment the fact that a) President Obama had two years in his first term with no opposition and got to pass 100% of his agenda and it didn't solve our nation's problems and b) the American people purposely elected divided government and deal with the crux of the issue -- the Founding Fathers intended government to move slowly.

This is why new laws must pass through both the House and Senate (both at the committee level and then at a full body vote), and in the latter body can be stopped in it's tracks by a filibuster requiring a 60 vote super-majority to break. Then, the President must sign the bill to make it a law. If the President vetoes the law it requires a 2/3 majority of both the House and Senate to override the veto. (For those of you from Palm Beach County, FL just click here for a more appropriate explanation.)

It was SUPPOSED to be hard to pass a new law. The President isn't supposed to get his laws passed immediately because the President says so. Actually, many of our founders didn't even believe the President should set the agenda AT ALL but rather that this right fell to Congress. For this reason, the first six Presidents of the United States only used the veto 8 times over the course of a total of 40 years (this included John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and John Quincy Adams who did not use the veto AT ALL). These six Presidents made all their vetoes on Constitutional grounds ONLY...believing that the bills past were Unconstitutional. It wasn't until President Andrew Jackson did we see Presidents veto duly passed bills because they simply opposed them. (In fact, the first 14 Presidents only exercised the veto 19 times in the first 68 years of the Constitution.)

The point of this lovely history lesson? The Founders WERE NOT worried about "getting things done." They recognized that if the nation rams through laws it's very possible the nation ends up with unenforceable, impossible laws that end up causing more problems than they solve -- if they solve any at all (see: Obamacare).

Furthermore, the system of checks and balances created in the Constitution actual means there will be deadlock to ensure that the American people actually WANT the laws put into place rather than one party ramming through their agenda. If there wasn't the system of checks and balances there would be an upheaval of our society's laws each time the balance of power shifted in Washington.

In addition, allowing the party in power to just "get stuff done" and ram through their agenda would lead to the tyranny of the majority. If the majority decided to vote away the rights of men to wear red shirts, then that would become the law of the land until a new majority voted to change that law. After all, that would be letting that party "get things done" right? Outlawing red shirts on men is in fact a thing that got done.

No party has a right to ram through their agenda, regardless of whether or not they claim that it would so totally work. That is not how the Constitution was written and how our nation was founded. Liberals can whine and moan about poor President Obama being obstructed and stopped from getting things done, that's the way the Constitution was written. Liberals should feel free to deal with it.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Liberal Rhetoric 101: Ignorance

"Republicans are obstructionists! They won't let poor President Obama GET THINGS DONE!"

When you spend time on Twitter, you will hear this sort of line from the typical liberal. The source? Usually getting 100% of news from MSNBC, CNN or the Daily Show.  Whether it is unitentional or willful, many liberals simply are unaware that a) Congress is not required to pass a President's agenda b) our Constitution provides a system of Checks and Balances to ensure that a President DOESN'T have pure control over government therefore c) Republicans are within their Constitutional authority to reject the President's agenda.

Of course, the same liberals saw zero problem with minority Democrats during the first six years of the Bush Administration blocking President Bush's judicial appointees. This was perfectly fine!  It was within the system checks and balances that the Founding Fathers intended in the Constitution!

While this is of course hypocritical, the typical liberal is actually completely unaware of this phenomenon! In most cases it's not at all willful hypocrisy but rather hypocrisy through ignorance.MSNBC or CNN is spoon-feeding them today that it's obstructionist for the GOP to stop President Obama's agenda, just as they spoon-fed those same liberals that it's perfectly Constitutional for the Democratic minority in the aughts to obstruct then President Bush. (For those of you from Palm Beach County, FL, "the aughts" are 2000-2009.)

I will never forget seeing a famous liberal whose entertainment value I enjoy aside from politics lambasting Harry Reid for "giving up" to GOP "obstructionism" during battles over the last year or so. He was apparently blissfully unaware that poor, put upon President Obama was getting about 75% of what he wanted from the GOP who were, in fact, bending over backwards to compromise.

It is my opinion that this individual was literally unaware of this reality because, as he posts on his Twitter regularly, his news source is MSNBC. He is blissfully unaware of the reality of government, and will likely happily support the next Democratic minority in obstructing the next Republican President (when these two circumstances next occur simultaneously).

How do we deal with these liberals? That's a tough question. Most are Neighborhood Liberals, so don't forget your gentle kid gloves. Those who are Activist Liberals are basically a lost cause in this case (as in many cases). Your best bet if it's an open, willing person is to present the alternative view and present the simple facts of the issue. It may work, it may not.  Ultimately, as Rush Limbaugh has stated on many occasions, nothing can overcome willful ignorance.