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June 28, 2011 12:34 AM UTC

CO Pro-Choice Advocate Draws Ire of National Pro-Lifer

  • 89 Comments
  • by: naralprochoiceco

(So they DO want to ban birth control now? Tell Ken Buck quick! – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Last week, HuffingtonPost Denver featured a commentary from NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado Political Director Toni Panetta raising the point that anti-choice politicians aren’t just out to restrict abortion anymore – they’re going full-bore after birth control during their quest to solidify their pro-life credentials. Today, national pro-life voice Judie Brown, president and co-founder of American Life League (operator of the multi-year “pill kills” campaign opposing birth control) used her weekly column on RenewAmerica.com to attack Panetta, ostensibly defending the burgeoning “personhood” movement that pushed for constitutional rights for fertilized eggs here in Colorado in ’08 and 2010. Brown’s piece mischaracterizes summarizes Panetta’s commentary by, among other things, likening pro-choice Americans to slaveholders. Excerpts after the jump.

According to Brown:

Whether a woman wants or does not want to be pregnant, in Panetta’s world, depends on the equal opportunity to cherish or dispose of her baby. That’s what “reproductive rights” are all about.

This is a ridiculous, prejudiced viewpoint when one considers that, just like those who chose to turn a blind eye on blacks because they were slaves a couple of centuries ago, today people like Panetta turn a blind eye on their fellow human beings because they are not yet born. Panetta is incredulous as she tells her readers that “anti-abortion extremists are doing their best to accomplish” the banning of contraceptives through dangerous, deceptively-worded personhood measures that she says would grant “constitutional rights to fertilized eggs.”

For the record, the term “fertilized egg,” is very misleading since “there is really no longer an egg (or oocyte) once fertilization has begun. What is being called a ‘fertilized egg’ is not an egg of any sort; it is a human being.”

Brown refrains, however, from tackling the heart of Panetta’s argument: that anti-abortion, anti-birth control politicians sit in the majority in a frighteningly large number of places, from the U.S. House of Representatives to state Legislatures that have considered upwards of 1,000 bills restricting everything from access to comprehensive sex education to publicly funded birth control and prenatal care to safe, legal abortion.

Comments

89 thoughts on “CO Pro-Choice Advocate Draws Ire of National Pro-Lifer

      1. In order to overrule Roe vs. Wade they have to get rid of the right to privacy.  When they do that, both Casey and Griswold (the case that declared contracep-tion bans in Conn illegal based upon the right to privacy) goes away as well.  If there are any of you who actually still believe that the Republican Party doesn’t want to outlaw contraception in all its form, then you haven’t been paying attention for the last 35 years.  Ask a bishop.  He will tell you and so will any number of right wing politicians.  The only thing the Tea Party has done that is good is to allow these out-of-touch idiots to say what they mean.  And they will.  Thank God, the veil is finally off their real, utlimate goal.

        Greetings from Denali in Alaska.

        1. The way Roe is overturned, is for the Court to find that abortion is a medical issue to be regulated by the states, not a federal issue.  Then each state will determine its own regs on abortion….that may or  may not include outlawing some forms of contraception.  SEE: White’s dissenting opinion in Roe.

          I don’t know if this would necessitate overruling Griswold, because after Griswold was decided, abortion was still outlawed by most states.  Casey would have to overturned.

          The abortion issue is part of the overall strategy to strip the federal government of many of its powers to protect civil rights.  It is a strategy.  the repubs don’t give a rat’s ass about abortion….they want to protect property rights…the states are the easiest way to do that.

          1. You are half right, but you position ignors the fact that 4 justices simply reject the concept that the Constitution contains any “right to privacy.”  The legal foundation of Griswold, Roe and Casey is the “right of privacy.”  If these four can convince Kennedy, then the “right” to access to birth control could very well be in jeopardy.  Then, the only thing protecting the availablity of birth control would be the billions of dollars in profits PHARMA makes marketing the pill and IUD.

            On the other hand, even pro-choice advocates admit that Roe was a poorly reasoned compromise decision.  So, yes, Kennedy could author another poorly reasoned decision which strips the constitutional protection of a woman’s right to choose without impacting Griswold.

            Be scared – very scared.

            1. All I hear from the right is “states’ rights.” There is a strategy to downgrade the power of the federal government. I think the goal is to turn all these issues over to the individual states and each state would decide.

              When the repubs were in power (Bush 2002 to 2006) there was no attempt to pass a constitutional amendment outlawing abortion.  As a matter of legislative fact, no Republican has ever had to vote on a so called Human Life Amendment since 1982.

              I think it is important not to realize the scope of the effort, of which abortion is a side issue.

              1. This is my mistake:

                I think it is important not to realize the scope of the effort, of which abortion is a side issue.

                I meant to type:  I think it is important to realize the scope of the effort, of which abortion is a side issue.

              2. There are ways to outlaw abortion which are much more effective than futile efforts to pass a national constitutional amendment.

                Abortion can be eliminated by heinous waiting periods combined with mandatory biased counselling by counselors who refuse to apply for the job (South Dakota), unreasonable restrictions, inspections and licensing on clinics that have nothing to do with patient safety (Kansas), or preventing liability insurance from being available to providers (Louisiana), as well as the ubiquitous laws preventing or limiting abortion after 20 weeks based ideologically on the notion that a fetus is capable of feeling pain  without a shred of scientific evidence.

                This onslaught of state level legislation is making it impossible or prohibitively expensive to get an abortion in broad swaths of middle America.  A push for a constitutional amendment banning abortion would pass the House, not the Senate, and wouldn’t get through 3/4 of the states.

                I don’t think you’re stupid, but your “don’t worry be happy” message that because there’s no movement to ban abortion nation-wide that abortion is just a political football, and there is no threat to women’s access to a constitutionally protected medical procedure is just plain ignorant.  

                1. by simply passing  new rules with which clinics have to comply and closing them if they can’t comply with two days notice. Legal challenges through suits already mounted, of courses

                2. Look,  my concern in the constitution of the United States and how the 14th amendment and other civil rights provisions, including Roe, are being attacked and eroded.

                  (Note:  Roe has always allowed the states to restrict abortion or prohibit abortion during the third trimester.)

                  I sounded the alarm on the strategy of the republicans to take control back in February of 2009…and was greeted with much the same distain you are showing now….

                  If concern were abortion, there would be other ways to proceed to outlaw it, I argue that the main thrust of the repubs is not to outlaw abortion it is to champion states rights at the expense of the federal government and our federal constitution.  As I understand it, one of the concerns of the pro-choicers is that legal challenges to these restrictions could be used by the Supereme Court to overturn Roe and return the issue to the states.

                  I am also curious as to how many abortions are performed in these states by doctors who do not practice in clinics, but merely offer this service as part of their gyn/ob or general practice.  I don’t know.

                  My message has NEVER been “don’t worry be happy.”  My  message always has been ” the repubs are coming, the repubs are coming and they will damage our constitution.”

                  1. It sounds like you’re saying that Rs don’t really care so much about banning abortion as they do altering the political power balance between the Federal Government and the States re:Federalism.  Abortion is a means to that end.

                    I say bull!  Banning abortion is their end, by all means necessary, and an intellectually logical and consistent framework by which that end is achieved is an unnecessary frill as far as they’re concerned.  Ultimately why they seek to deprive women of their rights is irrelevant to the women who can’t access the services they need.

                    I am also curious as to how many abortions are performed in these states by doctors who do not practice in clinics, but merely offer this service as part of their gyn/ob or general practice.  I don’t know.

                    I’ll damn well wager it’s zero.  Operation Rescue is crowing that Kansas will be an abortion free state if the existing clinics can’t comply with the new arbitrary licensing and inspection laws.  A Planned Parenthood clinic which can expect to do 10 terminations a day can be built to the new code as regards hallway and door widths, ventilation systems, etc. but a private doctors office that does one a week isn’t going to make those changes.  In a largely anti-choice community, it’s a simple business decision for a doc who might be pro-choice not to offer the service to avoid being ostracized by other patients or pro-life referring doctors.

                    Poor women with unplanned pregnancies are not pawns in some federalism battle about states’ rights, their bodies are the battleground, and they are the victims.

                    1. You are right, we are not in agreement over the goal of the repubs.  Let us agree to disagree.  Debating the issue with each other does not help either cause.

                    2. I remember when abortion was illegal as was contraception, even for married couples.  ( I remember also when men got drafted at 18 or 19 and couldn’t vote until they were 21)  I don’t respond to crocodile tears.

                      What I do find hard to believe is that all repub women in Kansas are pro-life and in no need of abortion.  What I find hard to believe is that all repub men in Kansas eagerly await the arrival of all children they father….in, out, of wedlock..rich, poor, employed or unemployed.  If the ‘NEED” for abortion has been absolutely eliminated in one large part of the population, that is news indeed.   If not, then there is one hell of a silent suffering majority in Kansas.

                      I suspect that abortion clinics are having a rough time, but abortion is still available quietly.

                    3. having a hardened heart? I agree if one is rich, the rules often do not apply to them (or they think they don’t). America has too many stories to prove it (many, but not all of them in the professional sports world).

                      Reminds me of a news story I was just reading. When I was a kid, we were pretty traumatized by the Oakland County Child Killer abducting and murdering at least four kids. One was a little girl in my neighborhood. Thirty years later, they are still looking for the perpetrator(s). DNA evidence recently linked the perp with one of the Chief execs at General Motors’s sons. Apparently, this guy was arrested many times for rape, and his father bailed him out and got him reduced pleas many times.

                      OUTRAGEOUS, but typical. The rich get richer; the poor get prison (or murdered).  

                    4. I don’t think rich repubs are flying to Puerto Rico as they used to….in my day.  I think that first trimester abortions are being performed in Kansas by private doctors in private facilities, with no announcement.

                      What do you mean “poor” people? Abortions are not free in any place, abortion clinics or private offices. Federal monies cannot pay for abortion  Medicaid in Kansas does not use state funds to pay for abortions.  So prior to all of these regulations, abortions still cost money, just like they do now.

                      I said republican women, not rich women.

                      If the restrictions on abortions in Kansas are total, and the republican men and women have accepted these restrictions on their personal lives w/o protest…that is a real accomplishment.  I just don’t think that is what happening.

                      As for the rest of it, nc, sometimes, you just go off into the wild blue yonder…..I have no idea what you are talking back…or its relevance…do you?

                    5. when you were talking about kabuki theatre. When the thread stops indenting, it is hard to know who is responding to whom.  

                    6. I let you have the last word and now I have to flog you some more

                      If a woman has an abortion in Kansas, the room temperature will have to be comfortable – between 68 and 73 degrees – under a new state health department rule taking effect in July.

                      The room will have to have at least 150 square feet, excluding “fixed” cabinets, and come with its own janitor’s closet with 50 or more square feet. The provider will be required to keep 13 types of drugs on hand, along with blood pressure cuffs for adults, children, infants and premature babies. Patients will have to remain in a recovery room for at least two hours afterward.

                      The new regulations for abortion providers in Kansas are more specific in places than they are for hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers, and more detailed than the rules for most clinics and offices in which doctors perform many surgical procedures.

                      Furthermore

                      Violation of subsection (a) or (b) is a class A nonperson misdemeanor and shall constitute unprofessional conduct under K.S.A. 65-2837, and amendments thereto.

                      Which means that a physician practicing in the “wink-wink, nudge-nudge” manner you describe is jeopardizing their medical license.  Now this ain’t 1823, ain’t even 1970 when under the radar abortion providers were at the forefront of a civil rights movement to expand access as the vanguard of a popular movement.  This is an era in which more than 900 anti-choice laws have been proposed in state legislatures, and the anti-choice movement is sending undercover actors into abortion clinics posing illegal scenarios to entrap providers.  The gain to a doctor is far outweighed by the potential negative consequences, and your “don’t worry be happy” contention that somehow abortion access continues unfettered in Kansas is belied by the facts

                      This is a poor woman’s problem because all of these restrictions make abortion more difficult and expensive to get, and while they are not currently free, many are covered by insurance.  Of course the current  Republican onslaught includes bans on tax credits for private insurance which covers abortion and bans on abortion coverage in insurance sold through the new state insurance exchanges mandated by PPACA.

                      I could fly my wife to New York for a 22 week abortion if I needed to.  Most of my patients couldn’t afford that.  Even if the sort of sub rosa abortion access you describe exists, those doctors would only be providing care to their existing patients they knew and trusted, not any desperate woman who called for an appointment.  Denying that this dispoproportionately effects poor women is just plain ignorant.

                      I hope you’re right that some day a Republican or two will realize that all of these restrictions violate their belief in abortion only in the case of “rape and incest, life, and me” and there is a rebound against these severe restrictions, but it is a long day off.  Colorado polling from a few years back showed that among people who considered abortion access to be their top issue, 10% of pro-choicers would base their vote on this issue alone, and ~80% of antis would.

                      They hate abortion.  This is not a semaphore for a larger states rights issue.  If “all you hear” from the right is states’ rights, you’re listening to the wrong sources.  Go here and enter your email in the “subscribe” box in the far right column.  Read this and this, and seriously dude, try to buy a clue.

                    7. RE: the following:

                      The new regulations for abortion providers in Kansas are more specific in places than they are for hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers, and more detailed than the rules for most clinics and offices in which doctors perform many surgical procedures.

                      Does this law pertain  only to free standing abortion clinics or does it attach to any doctor performing an abortion?

                      Are abortions prohibited by law (not hospital or medical practice decision) in hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers?

                      If abortions are performed in hospitals do they have to meet these standards?

                      Do you need a special license to perform abortions in Kansas?  

                    8. (Hello from Washington-Dulles, by the way. FYI, DIA is now shutting down metal detectors and doing millimeter wave scanning only late at night. I believe I speak for most people who like the Constitution when I say “fuck that.”)

                    9. I have all the luck with air travel these days. I gotta stop going to places that start with D and end in S with two Ls in the middle.

                      Last week was no big though because I was flying standby and knew I might get bumped, and what’s one more day of getting some sun and hanging out with my pony, right? This time I’m peeved. Apparently they’re waiting for the crew to show up in White Plains to fly “my” plane to Dulles. I guess United has never heard of the “Hey, can you cover a shift?” phone call. Or, say, scheduling enough people to cover shifts without delay.

                      (Not SW. I’ve actually never flown Southwest! I like American and Frontier.)

                    10. It only flies into Dulles, but the fare appears to be sooooo much cheaper, plus you can check all those bags for free…

                      What happened to us was we flew into Dulles, were there forever and finally got a shuttle to DC and spent as much on that fare as if we had flown into National…..god, I am such a pushover for anything cheap…

                      all of this is off upmost interest to you, I am sure….

                      So what does your administration plan for ColoPols?????

                      god, we don’t have a debt ceiling, do we?  

                    11. …We won’t really need to worry much about debt around here.

                      My plans… well, the reign of terror wouldn’t be very terrifying if it was announced in advance, would it?

                      Really, I’m mostly excited that I can add little editor comments when I promote things. In limerick/haiku form even, if I feel like it! Rork is a serious diarist and I kind of try to be the comic relief around here, so it’ll be interesting to see how things play out.

                      Unfortunately the most deliciously abusable moderator features are reserved to the Govs alone. I can’t delete comments or penalty box people. So much for locking the Beej up with Ralphie’s coloring books…

                    12. Hardly matters to a housekeeper with three kids and an undesired pregnancy in Kansas.

                    13. There wasn’t a single question mark in any of your previous posts.

                      Repeatedly exposing the ignorance that informs your Panglossian belief that all is well in Kansas for women who seek abortion, followed by queries about a law to which I provided a link is extraordinarily tiresome.

                      You don’t like the metaphor of flogging?  OK no more metaphors.  I will resume with exposing your tiresome ignorance of a subject about which you profess to have a concern, which I find to be more about “damage to our constitution” than it is about harm to real live women.

                      The Kansas law does require a license, which applies to the facility.  The same laws apply to hospitals and surgery centers.  A procedure done in an operating room costs in the thousands compared to the hundreds it would cost for the same one in a clinic.  Once again, poor women are disproportionately harmed.

                    14. Does this law pertain  only to free standing abortion clinics or does it attach to any doctor performing an abortion?

                      Are abortions prohibited by law (not hospital or medical practice decision) in hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers?

                      If abortions are performed in hospitals do they have to meet these standards?

                      Do you need a special license to perform abortions in Kansas?  

                      Those were my questions…you can tell by the question marks.

                      I don’t think  hyperbole and hysteria is constructive.

                      I am trying to determine the extend of this restriction.

                      Do repubs hate poor women. Yeh. so what else is new?

                      Is planned parenthood a target, as our many organization that support Democrats? YES

                      It is rare for doctors to restrict their own practice of their own speciality …usually there are intramural fights against the newcomer or a commercial chain, etc.  or some other competitive threat.  Attacking free standing abortion clinics strike me as part of that pattern, with politcal gains, too.

                    15. And you know this how?

                      Doctors who do abortions lose referrals from anti-choice primary care docs.  This is a fact I know from personal experience.  I don’t imagine there is much to be gained from doing two abortions a month as a private OB in Kansas.

                      Are you suggesting the Kansas restrictions are the fault of OB/GYNs who want to keep their own abortion business from the clinics? It sounds like that’s what you’re arguing, and that’s just plain clueless.

                      Where’s the hyperbole and hysteria?  Abortion rights are under unprecedented attack from religiously motivated lunatics.

                      Go down to Planned Parenthood any morning and ask Jo Scott about federalism and the constitution.  She’ll look at you like you’re a martian.  God told her to save the little babies, and that’s all this is about.

                      p.s. It’s kind of ridiculous to say I don’t answer your questions when you haven’t asked them yet.

    1. Many are upset at party politics yet, most of those individuals will make their decisions by blindly accepting one solution proposed over another.  The work required to ascertain, for themselves, what is right or wrong or one preferable over another, they don’t want to do.  For all too many, it is simply “too hard”.  Those such as Mr. Buck, while they pretend to have answers, all too frequently have not bothered to ask the proper questions and, even when those are presented to them, do not understand them or the implication of their answers.  Unfortunately, that does not prevent them from telling others, not only what they should do, but what they should believe.

      1. Unfortunately, that does not prevent them from telling others, not only what they should do, but what they should believe.

        A dangerous world we live in when not only have our potential legislators not done their homework before attempting to persuade us in legislative policy, but also try to force their dogmatic doctrine upon the rest of us (hence, keep Ken Buck OUT of my uterus).  

        1. actually do not think.  They enter believing that they already know all of the answers, most frequenlty based more upon theory and very little experience (It also makes a big difference what type of experience they have had and in what field).  

          Even Aristotle, as have many other past thinkers, recognized that there is no substitute for experience, and of the right kind.  Theory is nice, but it is not the real world.

          Some of us make an effort to listen very carefully to what people say, no matter which political party or organization they belong to as we know and recognize that nobody is always right.  

          In so doing, we make every attempt not to filter whatever another says through some ideological prism of any type, and thereby hear what it is we want to hear or see what we want to see. Nor do we want to be provided the interpretation along with factual information.

          In other words, we choose to do our own evaluation.  And that, will most frequently require that we dig out actual facts and “follow up”, and for ourselves. Those not willing to do so often complain that they are being “lied to”.  

          Well, anyone who waits to be told what are the facts and what is true or not true, is the one at fault as he/she has set him/herself up to be deceived. Therefore, they have nobody else to blame but themselves.

          Robert I. Laitres (D)

    2. and I was pretty thoroughly chastised for being “vulgar”. Many who defended him said I should have stuck to the word “uterus”. I chose my words carefully. These people not only want to limit access to medically- necessitated abortions, but also to birth control and all family-planning resources. They worked overtime to limit funding for Planned Parenthood, and many of their cohorts in other states have passed the most draconian measures to limit women’s rights to their own bodies we’ve seen in one hundred years. They are doing things… and succeeding… in ways we never thought possible.

      Still other bloggers, many of those here, kept saying, “It’s all for show/ they’re doing it to suck up to the radical right/ they’d never really vote with them”, etc. Well, that is not at all what happened. When Republicans swept Congress in 2010, they did come with a vengeance to take away every civil right a woman had that they possibly could. They said they would try to get everything they could, and they did.

      Most Americans believe in reproductive freedom — for men and for women. To sit back and not take these fanatical extremist nutjobs seriously is to be a lazy citizen. Keep blogging, keep emailing, keep donating, keep organizing, or we can kiss reproductive freedoms — along with many others — good-bye.

      1. That anyone could ever think that they could make such an intimate decision for someone they don’t even know. Could I ever have an abortion? I really don’t know. Thank god I have had free access to birth control that has (probably many times over) prevented me from getting pregnant. Access to education on birth control, and to birth control itself, ultimately results in lower income people having more children further straining the welfare system.

        Furthermore, many social conservative evangelicals, while using Jesus as their shield, seem to forget that Jesus gave us all free choice. And yeah, that includes the choice to “sin”. Explain to me again how, if your Christ wished to give  human beings the right to make free decisions, you can step in and restrict that choice in his name?

        Thanks for your work on this Nancy

        1. We all do it here.

          I agree with you completely, ColoMod. It is unconscionable that Republicans — especially rich Republicans — want to force women to have babies they cannot afford to feed.

          I’ve shared here before I grew up in a working class neighborhood three miles outside of Detroit, that was filled with huge Catholic families. My own family (not Catholic but still religious) had nine children.

          Most of the time, I was not aware how broke we were, but it was a constant source of worry for my parents. I remember times when I owned exactly two outfits. I remember when my pet rabbit disappeared — we probably had to eat it when times were tough. I remember not going to the dentist until I was 14 years old, and when I did, I needed teeth pulled and my parents could not afford novacaine. So, I had all my dental work done without any painkillers whatsoever. To this day, I am terrified of dentists and the sound of drills. I couldn’t even take my kid to the orthodontist, my fear was so strong. But I thank goodness I had the work done — thanks to the Union of Automotive Workers who finally won a victory and got us a little dental insurance (not great, but a little).

          Each of my siblings is a blessing in my life, and I could not imagine living without any of them. Had my mother chosen not to have all of her children, I would not hold it against her, though. I could never blame someone for choosing NOT to have a life of constant worry and heartache, wondering where the next meal would come from for her children. Each woman deserves to make this decision for herself. Not allowing her to do so is barbaric. Allowing unwanted children to come into this world only to starve or have pain or be medically neglected is the worst former of inhumanity, IMHO.  

      1. The diagram below shows blastocyst formation in the female body.

        Angry face

        The egg is fertilised following ovulation from the ovary and the embryo goes on to divide (cleave) as it travels along the fallopian tube. Blastocyst formation occurs as the embryo reaches the uterus.

        1. abstinence only stance crowd.  It’s not as if all of these anti-birth control activists and Republican pols mainly have 10 or 20 children.  I seriously doubt that they were all chaste virgins before they got married and then stopped having sex after having the modest number children most of them have.  It’s hard to see it as anything but hypocritical and cynical.  

          1. are the kinds of privileges that should only be given to those who can afford them. And if you can’t afford them, obviously you aren’t pious enough. Lazy SOBS….

        2. http://www.medterms.com/script

          Zygote: The cell formed by the union of a male sex cell (a sperm) and a female sex cell (an ovum). The zygote develops into the embryo following the instruction encoded in its genetic material, the DNA.

          The unification of a sperm and an ovum to form a zygote constitutes fertilization.

          1. They work primarily by providing a hormonal cocktail that prevents ovulation, the release of the egg into the fallopian tube.  No egg, no fertilization, no zygote, no blastocyst, no embryo, no meeting of egg and sperm in the first place, just as with the rhythm method only much, much, much more reliable.  

            1. But considering that pregnancies occur to women on the pill, some do ovulate, and some sperm does make it through.  Given the known effects of contraceptives on the endometrium (uterine lining), to rule out any post-conception effect is impossible.  Very rare, yes, impossible, no.

              1. in the overwhelming majority of cases the pill works the way it’s supposed to and where women get pregnant while taking the pill it’s usually not pill failure but sloppiness in sticking with the regimen.

                True, it’s possible for failure resulting in the release of an egg in spite of taking the pill as directed, in which case failure to attach is more usual than pregnancy but much, much rarer than anti-birth control activists would have you believe, as witness the number of women who never get pregnant over many years on the pill in spite of stats such as 99% effective which ought to result in at least one pregnancy over the years for most women who, say, have sex once a week on the pill for 5 years, many more than 100 times. That isn’t the case. That’s why when Bristol Palin claims she got pregnant while taking the pill  for cramps on an innocent camping trip during which her virginity was stolen (though she makes no allegation of rape and initially planned to marry the “thief”) while drunk I tend to take every one of those alleged facts with a grain of salt. Except the drinking.

                Spontaneous early miscarriages are comparatively common.  But we don’t see any effort on the part of the anti-birth control activists to outlaw for all women of childbearing age all the various risk factors that can contribute to failure to maintain a pregnancy. They also often are against programs that make condoms more easily available, another method of birth control that prevents the meeting of sperm and egg but one that cannot result in any harm to a fertilized egg in the case of failure. Is it just me or do they seem to have some fundamental aversion to the idea that anyone might be having fun without suffering guilt and self-loathing?

            2. The birth control pill prevents pregnancy in three ways:

              1.  It inhibits the release of the egg into the fallopian tube.

              2.  It makes the cervical mucus sticky to inhibit the sperm.

              3.  It thins the wall of the uterus so as to inhibit implantation of the zygote or blastocyst.

              The anti-birth control types point to this latter effect to argue that the birth contol pill is an “abortion pill.”  This is their primary “admitted” argument for wanting to ban all birth control but the barrier method.

              1. That’s how it works most of the time. Yes it also works in all the ways you describe. Mainly, though, egg just doesn’t meet sperm. But these same anti-choicers don’t seem overly concerned about fertility clinics that treat unused embryos as garbage. Oh they suggest adopting embryos but they don’t get their undies in a bunch over it.  Why not? They oppose condom distribution, a pure barrier method that doesn’t harm fertilized anything.  Why? Because it isn’t really about the sanctity of life. It’s about wanting to impose their screwed up attitudes toward sex on everybody.  

          2. …That says a zygote and a blastocyst are identical where?

            Zygote becomes embryo is not the same as zygote is embryo.  

            If there is a post-fertilization effect of the pill as claimed by the most fervent RTLers it is to prevent implantation of an embryo, not a zygote or fertilized egg.

            “Fertilized Egg” is political speech which polls well, and I recommend continuing to use it.  It is not, however, biologically accurate.

            1. the second title is called a fertilized egg. It happens before it implants.

              I said that it is a zygote before it implants, it is an embryo when it implant. It is a zygote before that.  

            2. There is and can be no such thing as a fertilized egg.  I suppose that this is your point.  Just know that most of us and the Bible don’t agree with your interpretation.

              1. Says that an egg has 23 chromosomes and is capable of fertilization.

                A zygote has 46 and is not.

                That’s a fundamental biological difference which puts it into an entirely other category of living tissue.

                “Fertilized Egg” like “Death Tax” is a political creation not connected to the reality under argument which tilts the debate to the side using it.  It’s a powerful phrase which polls well against personhood, and I will continue to use it.  I will not pretend to mean it as a factual statement.

                    1. The definition of life might matter though.

                      In Cathlocism and many fundamentalist-leaning branches of Christianity, it is conception.

                      In Orthodox Judaism, it is when the egg/zygote/blastocyst/fetus/baby/etc breathes on its own (i.e. the “breath of life”).

                      To many spiritual-leaning people I know, it is when the sentient being feels pain, which is difficult to ascertain scientifically, but may be determined by the sophistication of the nervous system development.

                      To liberal Judaism, it is when the baby completes medical school.   🙂

  1. That Chevy dealership should just let me walk away with a Camaro since I have the potential to become a millionaire which means I’ll obviously have the money later to pay for it.

  2. While we have been listening to this debate every single election cycle, and for decades, the definitions used are faulty.  For instance, I hav never met anyone who is “for” abortion, as the so-called “pro-lifers” attempt to portray those whom they consider their adversaries.  Therefore it has nothing to do with life itself, but rather with the ultimate freedom of the individual to make his/her own choice; i.e. govern their own lives.  And, if an abortion occurs, the war was lost a long time before that even occured, specifically the battle waged in that individual’s mind.  To then attempt, and with the power of the state, to compel another to behave as some believe they should, primarily through the use of emotion is, to say the least disingenuous. There are many things people say and do that upsets us all, but the way to change an individual’s behavior is to change his/her thinking and not compel them by brute force.  That is true no matter what is the issue or how one personaly “feels.”  What is unfortunate is that these so-called “social conservative” issues are used by politicians, not because of any real moral or ethical considerations, but to divert attention away from what we should be considering.  How this tactic has been so succesfully used for decades, yet still remain largely unrecognized by so many, has to boggle the mind of any thinking person.  The time has long since passed when it should be.  However, the basis of their campaigns being primarily emotional and neither logical nor reasonable, and it having been succesful for so long, it is doubtful if it will anytime soon be abandoned.

  3. What amazes this individual is at how so many are obsessed about anything having to do with anything remotely connected to the subject of “sex” (in particular the sex lives of others) and the reproductive process.  Of all the animals, it is only the human animal (supposedly the “superior” one) who has made it into a religion, or at least a very important part of it.  Some of us might go so far as to consider this obsession not only neurotic but actually a form of voyeurism. While some will expound, and “ad nauseam” about such things as the “sanctity of life”, the truth is that neither they, nor anyone else what “life” actually is or where it resides.  It would seem that that question first needs to be answered and, then and only then, could it even be rationally discussed.  

    1. then why aren’t they picketing fertility clinics where embryos become waste? Why aren’t they all for condoms which prevent pregnancy without harming a single  fertilized anything? Why aren’t they pushing for laws forbidding things like alcohol and cigarettes being sold to women of childbearing age because those things can and do harm the unborn and can lead to spontaneous abortion otherwise known as miscarriage, sometimes before a woman even knows she’s pregnant?

      You’ve hit on something with “neurotic”.  Bet it has more to do with neuroses, guilt, self loathing and resentment of those who can enjoy healthy sex for pleasure without all the angst.

        1. Just walk right into the stereotype of heartless, bitter baby haters who just love abortion because pregnancy is the equivilant of a parasite infestion. Way to do the pro-choice movement a lot of good there, Irish P. For the record, it doesn’t even make sense as parasites are as alive as any other life form.

          1. when there are artificial uteri for those cell to develop in, you might have a point.

            Medically if you understood what a parasite i, you’d understand that pregnancy mirrors a parasite infestation. How does a fetus get nutrients, get waste removal etc; it is through the host.  

              1. An obligate parasite is a parasitic organism that cannot live independently of its host.

                There is no species specification.

                When they have artificial uteri then you can say  the fetus isn’t a parasite.  

                1. You just keep making it better and better, don’t you? You completely don’t get it. And you’re the one who is light on your understanding of definitions. You said it’s not life if it needs a host.  Not that that is in any way relevant to my point but that’s also not part of any field of science’s definition of life.  So, not germane even if it was true, which it isn’t. Basically, my point is that pro-choicers who sound like you, bitter and nasty, do the cause way more harm than good.  

                2. You see, IP, all parasites live in or on a host of a different SPECIES.  An obligate parasite is just one type of parasite.

                  I sincerely hope that you nor anyone else has made a personal decision based on inaccurate information about the nature of parasites and fetuses.

                    1. pregnancy is just being a parasite host thing is ridiculous for such obvious reasons, to try to list them would be a waste of space and is not at all helpful to any discussion of choice vs anti-choice.  

                    2. In all of this conversation, where is the mention of the one we KNOW is a life — the mother? Doesn’t it concern any of you how little regard anyone seems to have for her life?

                    3. Not our fault that the choice was to keep stubbornly hammering on equating carrying a child to harboring a parasite.  Not our fault how beautifully that fits with the stereo-type of baby hating, abortion loving, godless, commie, death panel and lord knows what else (the devil?) worshiping liberals. Do you think the whole parasite argument is at all helpful? Seriously?  Really, now?

      1. Except that fertility clinics are popular with the supposed “pro-life” crowd.  Same goes for smokes and drinks.  Going after those would make the group too unpopular; they may be neurotic, nuts, or just plain fanatical, but the people with the money have probably judged the cost/benefit balance on just which positions to take to a fine hair.

        (PS – this statement is for some definition of “sanctity of life” which doesn’t necessarily include post-birth situations.)

        1. supposed sanctity of life, right to lifers are also death penalty proponents. Even supporting the death penalty for the mentally challenged. A strange mix of blood lust and life worship.

  4. Poll after poll after poll says most Americans support reproductive freedom. I can’t wait until these tea-party crazies are defeated at the election booths.

    “Thank you, Michelle Bachman, Sarah Palin, and so many others. We love you.” Signed, a Democrat.

    1. Getting the base out, year after year since the passage of Roe v. Wade, requires some level of demagoguery, and Republicans have kept it up effectively for 35+ years now.  With their base intact, they can go after the independents who mostly think that government is too pervasive or corrupt – nevermind that Republicans seem to be at least as corrupt and eager to spend money as Democrats.

      And because many people aren’t one-issue voters, they’ve even managed to make some gains on the legal front and in scaring away doctors from even learning about abortion procedures.  I can only hope the economic pain they’re inflicting on voters in some states this year wakes some folks up to the true cost of running government, and just which party is trying to be responsible about it.

  5. the repubs hate women and particularly poor pregnant women. You hate religious lunatics.  What is your plan….other than screaming at me…which evidently gives you some kind of relief….

    If there is a successful strategy against the attack on federalism;..ie

    1) The 14th amendment is NOT rewritten to eliminate birthright citizenship, rights for women and handicapped, and return civil rights to the states for protection, the abortion rights will be protected under this umbrella…

    IF there is not a successful strategy against the attack on federalism..

    Then, we lose not only abortion rights, but civil rights and birthright citizenship

    The legal chess game goes on with the abortion issue, as it has for decades, I do not see this particular fight advancing the protection of other civil rights or  birthright citizenship…

    I find your self-righteous attitude off-putting.  I am not the enemy, I just think you get your rocks off yelling at me.

    I am outa here.

    1. Is to educate poorly informed voters of the threat that Republicans represent to their rights, every time it rears its head.

      I also plan to ignore pollyannas who tell me not to bring up social issues against Republicans because it is bad advice  If you want me to shut up about abortion when a 100% anti-choice Republican is running (as you did during Buck v. Bennet) then you are the enemy.  Furthermore your implication that because some woman somewhere can get an abortion things aren’t so bad reminds me of Anthony Kennedy’s opinion in Gonzales v. Carhart

      Constitutional fights can be had at the federal court level, or they can be fought bill by bill and jurisdiction by jurisdiction.  We’re where we are now because of 40 years of corporate funded right wing think tanks producing position papers, and politicians funded by the same interests who know the long game is re-shaping the federal judiciary and regulatory apparatus.  The victory you seek is decades away, while I’m trying to protect the interests of the vulnerable women I see and treat today.

      What’s your plan?

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