August 24, 2012
It's the Democrats who are Extreme on Abortion
One of the latest talking points coming out of the left is that conservatives and Republicans are "extreme" on abortion. This from the party of gay marriage no less, but never mind that. As Rich Lowry points out, it's the Democrats who are extreme:
In the Illinois legislature, (then-Senator Barack Obama) opposed the "Born-Alive Infants Protection Act" three times. The bill recognized babies born after attempted abortions as persons and required doctors to give them care. Obama's stalwart opposition to the bill came up during the 2008 campaign, and his team responded with a farrago of obfuscation and distortions.
The bill was supposedly redundant. Except it wasn't. Protections for infants who survived abortions were shot through with loopholes, which is why the bill was offered in the first place. (Abortion doctors were leaving infants to die without any care.) The bill was supposedly a threat to abortion rights. Except it wasn't. Obama opposed a version that stipulated it didn't affect the legal status of infants still in the womb.
About a year after his final vote against the bill, Obama gave his famous 2004 Democratic convention speech extolling post-partisan moderation. But he couldn't even bring himself to protect infants brutalized and utterly alone in some medical facility taking what might be only a few fragile breaths on this Earth. Some moderation. The federal version of the bill that he opposed in Illinois passed the U.S. Senate unanimously. Some post-partisanship.
President Obama is an extremist on abortion. He has never supported any meaningful restriction on it, and never will.
He opposed a partial-birth abortion bill in Illinois, even as the federal version passed the House with 282 votes and the Senate with 64 votes and was signed into law by President Bush in 2003. He arrived in the U.S. Senate in time to denounce the Supreme Court's ruling upholding the ban.
In 2007, he told the Planned Parenthood Action Fund that his first act as president would be signing the Freedom of Choice Act. The act would enshrine in federal law a right to abortion more far-reaching than in Roe v. Wade and eliminate basically all federal and state-level restrictions on abortion. This isn't a point its supporters contest; it's one they brag about. The National Organization for Women says it would "sweep away hundreds of anti-abortion laws [and] policies."
All true. As I documented in 2008 during the campaign, Obama was the most pro-abortion candidate in our history. Yes that's right; pro-abortion, there's no "choice" about it. In his third debate with John McCain, Obama said that as a state senator he did not "vote to withhold lifesaving treatment from an infant" and was " completely supportive of a ban on late-term abortions, partial-birth or otherwise, as long as there's an exception for the mother's health and life."
All lies, as National Right to Life explained at the time:
-- The Illinois Born-Alive Infants Protection Act (BAIPA) was a simple three-sentence bill to establish that every baby who achieved "complete expulsion or extraction" from the mother, and who showed defined signs of life, was to enjoy the legal protections of a "person." As a state senator, Obama led the opposition to this bill in 2001, 2002, and 2003. On March 13, 2003, Obama killed the bill at a committee meeting over which he presided as chairman. In the October 15 debate, Obama said, "The fact is that there was already a law on the books in Illinois that required providing lifesaving treatment." This claim is highly misleading. The law "on the books," 720 ILCS 510.6, on its face, applies only where an abortionist declares before the abortion that there was "a reasonable likelihood of sustained survival of the fetus outside the womb." But humans are often born alive a month or more before they reach the point where such "sustained survival" - that is, long-term survival - is likely or possible (which is often called the point of "viability"). When Obama spoke against the BAIPA on the Illinois Senate floor in 2001 -- the only senator to do so -- he didn't even claim that the BAIPA was duplicative of existing law. Rather, he objected to defining what he called a "previable fetus" as a legal "person" -- even though the bill clearly applied only to fully born infants. These events are detailed in an August 28, 2008 NRLC White Paper titled "Barack Obama's Actions and Shifting Claims on the Protection of Born-Alive Aborted Infants -- and What They Tell Us About His Thinking on Abortion," which contains numerous hyperlinks to primary source
And the left has the temerity to call us "extreme" for our pro-life stance? Give me a break.
Read my 2008 post for the whole thing.
So What About the "Rape and Incest" Thing?
Here we are are forced to discuss, however briefly, things terrible and traumatic beyond most people's imaginings. This is a touchy subject and difficult to address. One's heart can only go out to the victims of such horrors, and we should do all we can to take care of them in their suffering.
The position of the pro-life movement on this needs to be explained in a clear fashion. Disagree if you will, but hear me out.
The logic is pretty straightforward: we believe that independent human life, complete with soul and spirit, is formed at conception. This does not of course mean that the new life can function outside of his or her mother, although scientific advances will one day make it possible, Aldous Huxley just being a bit ahead of his time. As such, it doesn't change the principle.
It does not, therefore, make any difference how that life started. It is not the doing of the pre-born baby as to how he or she was conceived.
No one would think that a 1 year old should be killed because he or she was the product of a rape, this because we would all agree that it is an independent being with soul and spirit. If you believe a pre-born baby to be an independent human with soul and spirit, then 1 year old = pre-born, therefore you can't kill either.
If you want to disagree on the status of a pre-born baby, ok, but at least please understand the logic before you go off half-cocked on the matter.
Again, the Real Extremists
So again, the real extremists are those like Barack Obama who not only won't ban partial-birth abortion, but are ok with letting living infants die who survived the abortionists attempt to kill them.
And it's just been announced that Sandra Fluke,Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL, and Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood will speak at the Democratic National Convention. The first is a nut, and if the other two aren't extremists no one is.
I'll end with this must-watch video of abortion survivor Gianna Jessen. She gives one of the most extraordinary speeches I've heard in my life. No matter where you are on this issue, please watch it.
Posted by Tom at August 24, 2012 9:00 PM
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This comment was originally left as "anonymouse, but it is from the same IP address as "RWNutjob," so I updated the comment to reflect that fact
If you really believe that a fetus should be considered a human being from the moment of conception, good for you. Don't have an abortion! Nobody's forcing you to have one. Tell all your family and friends (and former friends) all about your grand beliefs. Start a blog and preach it to the world! Go stand on street corners every weekend with signs containing gruesome pictures of aborted fetuses and try to save the world! But don't tell me and my family what we should do if we should find ourselves in a difficult, heartbreaking situation, and we happen to look at this extremely personal issue in a different way than you see it. And don't try to take away my family's legal rights to act in a way that we think is in our best interests. That's the truly conservative position.
Posted by: RWNutjob at August 25, 2012 9:02 AM
Well, anonymous, you have summarized the pro-choice position well, which is to say, it's all about you.
As such you miss the central issue. In fact, you don't even address it. If life begins at conception then by definition you cannot kill him or her. No one can legitimately choose to kill a 2 year old child, because we all agree that he or she is a person. So if you believe life begins at conception, then you cannot legitimately choose to kill a baby in the womb.
You simply cannot choose to do that which is wrong. You cannot choose to kill a 2 year old, and you cannot choose to kill a baby in the womb.
I tried to be at pains to recognize that these are heartbreaking, difficult situations. I know too many people who work at crisis pregnancy centers not to get that. But they council adoption as an option, and I am happy to say that many women who come and see them choose that option.
Posted by: Tom the Redhunter at August 26, 2012 9:34 PM
Ok, I'll address what you say is the central issue. I don't think human life, a life that is entitled to all the protections of a two-year old child, begins at conception, any more than I believe live sperm or a woman's unfertilized eggs deserve the full protection of the law. Therefore, if someone with my beliefs chooses abortion, they would not be choosing to do anything they considered to be wrong. Why are your beliefs about right and wrong more valid than mine or anybody else's, especially on an issue where there is such a wide range of opinion?
It's wonderful that adoption is a good option for the many women who choose to go through with their pregnancies, but what about the many women, who for very serious, and dare I say, "legitimate" reasons, decide that they cannot have the child? If it were your wife or daughter who were raped, are you telling me you would absolutely demand of them that they carry that child to term? Really?!?
As for your swipe at the pro-choice position being "all about you", I think that description would be more applicable to the Republican Party's economic policies...ME FIRST!
Posted by: RwNutjob at August 26, 2012 10:21 PM
You are correct that whether a person considers a baby in the womb to be a person or not is the crux of the matter, so that if you believe that he or she is not a person then abortion is acceptable. Thank you for addressing it.
"Why are your beliefs about right and wrong more valid than mine or anybody else's, especially on an issue where there is such a wide range of opinion? "
Just because there is a wide range of opinion doesn't mean that one of them is not correct and the others incorrect. I have studied the matter and think that mine is correct, that's all.
Rape is terrible and all compassion and love should be directed towards the victims of such a terrible crime. We must aide them in every way possible, which is what my friends try to do at their crisis pregnancy centers. The objective is that they can carry their babies to term without financial or other hardship. Undergoing an abortion is traumatic for women. Carrying the baby to term and giving him or her away as an adoption results in the best of both worlds; a woman doesn't undergo either the trauma of an abortion or of keeping a baby that she didn't want or can't care for, and the baby gets to live.
Now that we've each stated our positions on that, it's time for you to state whether you support
1) Partial birth abortion
2) Then-state Senator Obama's opposition to the Illinois Born-Alive Infants Protection Act
Posted by: The Redhunter at August 27, 2012 6:29 PM
Because there is such a wide range of opinion on abortion, is empirical evidence to me that this difficult deciscion is best left up to the individual. Generally, when governments make laws that more than half their citizens disagree with, the results are not very positive for society.
I don't know enough about the two other issues you asked about, but I do have a lot of reservations about later term abortions.
Posted by: Rwnutbag at August 27, 2012 9:40 PM
And, I must note, for the record, you did not give a direct answer to the question of what you, personally, would do, if your wife, daughters, sisters or nieces were raped and became pregnant. If you can't or won't answer that question truthfully, you have no standing on the issue at all, with me.
Posted by: RW nutbag at August 28, 2012 6:41 PM
Over at my blog Nutjob has insisted he is willing to compromise on abortion but never once is specific about what that means. Meanwhile, he always demands specifics from others.
I am gratified to see that he thinks individuals do have the right to make decisions for themselves. What a shame he doesn't apply to healthcare or the rest of the Democrat agenda which continues to demand total obedience.
Posted by: Mike's America at August 29, 2012 9:38 PM
"Because there is such a wide range of opinion on abortion, is empirical evidence to me that this difficult deciscion is best left up to the individual."
Good grief I already instructed you on this; just because there is a "wide range of opinion" does not meant all of those opinions are valid or true. Only one is true, and you are either a moral relativist (an illogical position), or an unthinking person unable to sift facts and reach a conclusion.
I thought I'd answered your question by implication, which is that I'd council them to carry the baby to term. Of course. In the end, of course, they are free people who can do as they choose. I'd tell them I'd be disappointed in them if they aborted (of course) but I'd still love them
Now you answer my questions about partial birth abortion and the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act.
Posted by: Tom the Redhunter at August 29, 2012 10:28 PM
Sure, they are free to do as they choose in today's America, but not in the one that you and Paul Ryan envision. And you say my position is illogical?
Posted by: Rw nutbag at August 30, 2012 12:44 AM
Ah so you are now refusing to answer my questions. You demand answers but refuse to answer them in return.
Lots of things are banned. Banning something is not in and of itself illogical.
What strikes me about this whole "rape and incest thing" is how far we even are from getting there. We live in a country in which you can have an abortion for any reason up to and including the day of birth, and we're debating this? It's like Christopher Columbus and his men debating how high to build the Hoover dam before they even set sail. Uh, worry about getting across the Atlantic first.
The left defends partial birth abortion, refuses to pass a "born alive act," and allows abortion in the second and third trimesters.
Let's be honest; very few abortions are performed for rape and incest. The vast majority occur because people are sexually irresponsible and don't want to take responsibility for the consequences. It's birth control by another means. I include the men in this; perhaps especially the men. Many or most of them want abortion so they can go out, have as much casual sex as they want, and if she gets pregnant they tell her it's not their problem and to go have an abortion.
Now again my questions for you: Would you agree to ban partial birth-abortions? How about abortions in the third trimester? Second?
Posted by: Tom the Redhunter at August 30, 2012 6:45 AM
If your side agreed to allow first trimester abortions, and stop wasting time trying to achieve a total ban, I could be convinced to prohibit second and third trimester abortions. See how easy that is...it's called compromise, something both parties have forgotten how to do. And while you're at it, if you'd give the LGBT community the same rights to marry as everyone else, I'd be willing to listen more seriously to a lot of your positions, like taxes and spending, school vouchers and health care, environmental and financial regulations...take away the silly arguments over the social issues that you guys insist on being part of the conservative package, and you might be surprised how many moderates, and liberals, would work with you for the good of the country.
Posted by: rwnutbag at August 30, 2012 4:38 PM
My side won't compromise? Please, put your crack pipe down before blogging. As if the Democrats are willing to even give up their support for partial-birth abortion, let alone ban third or second trimester ones? Give me a break.
Neither side wants to compromise because both sides are convinced they are right. It's called irreconcilable differences, and it's human nature 101. The Founding Fathers would understand, even if you don't.
Politics is not a math problem where it's only a matter of finding the right variables. There is no "right" answer for health care, gun control, or abortion, to pick three examples. One side thinks that health insurance should be guaranteed by the government and the other doesn't. One side thinks that individuals should not be able to buy pretty much any gun they want and the other does. One side thinks life begins at conception and should be protected and the other side doesn't
Posted by: The Redhunter at August 30, 2012 10:21 PM
So what do you suggest...civil war? Let's bring it down to the level of just you and me. I told you I would be willing to compromise, but I haven't heard you say that you would. So, what do you say?
Posted by: rwnutbag at August 31, 2012 11:24 PM
You need to read my comments policy, the link to which is at the upper right of the page.
Posted by: The Redhunter at September 1, 2012 9:15 AM
"Run, you guys, the speech police are here!". I guess we see which side really wants to compromise.
Posted by: RWNutjob at September 1, 2012 9:22 AM
Would I agree to a permanent compromise? Of course not. If you don't like my principles, fine, but at least I have them and I don't compromise. You, on the other hand, are willing to throw yours away for a cheap "compromise" on a blog. Or did you not have any to begin with?
Of course, not everything falls into this category (I can't believe I need to explain all this to you). One can and should at times compromise on matters that are not of core principle. For example, depending on the exact situation it may or may not be right to compromise on a particular tax rate or spending level, but to do so would not be a mortal sin.
This is not to say that I wouldn't vote for a law banning abortion in the third trimester, for example, with an exception for rape and incest. I'll take what I can get when I can get it. But it would not signal the end of the battle.
Now, before you throw the "extremist" label around any further, keep in mind that the "no abortion even in cases of rape and incest" is the official position of the Roman Catholic Church, among whose 77 million members include such Democrats as Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi (I am not a Catholic). As members, they are required to accept this non-negotiable stance (did you follow that link to "mortal sin?"). Are these Democrats "extremists" too? Or simply hypocrites for not accepting the required teachings of their own church? Bottom line is I'll put this up against Obama's support of partial-birth abortion and letting abortion survivors die any day.
Back to my comments policy, which you obviously did not read. Part of the reason I directed you to it was let you know that I am on to your game, which is called "entertain myself by baiting the blog owner into falling for a never-ending debate by demanding answer after answer, and lead him around like he's got a ring on his nose." Against my better judgment I let this one go on longer than I should have, so this is my last comment on this thread. I've explained the pro-life position quite well enough. My policy in these situations is also to let my guests have the last word, so if you want it it's yours.
Posted by: The Redhunter at September 2, 2012 7:35 PM
No, I think you've explained your role as an extremist quite well. I just wish all the elected officials who share your unrealistic, extreme position would be honest and up front about it.
Posted by: Rwnutbag at September 2, 2012 9:18 PM