Monday, August 10, 2009

Life Links 8/10/09

Frank Beckwith notes the concerns of Charles Lane in the Washington Post surrounding the health care reform legislation’s end-of-life counseling. Beckwith writes,
Supporters of H.R. 3200 claim that its end of life counseling provision, section 1233, is merely voluntary for the patient. But a closer look shows that section 1233 includes conditions and financial incentives for physicians and other health care providers that create a setting in which an elderly patient’s decision to appropriate this option is likely to be less than voluntary.

MercyMe, a Christian rock band, cancelled a performance after their tour bus collided with a car and killed a passenger, the pregnant driver and her unborn child.

Abortion clinic founder Merle Hoffman, in a rambling piece regarding how pro-choicers should respond to sex-selection abortion, shares a story of a Russian woman who came into their clinic for her 36th abortion.
Some believe that the choice of abortion is wrong in all places for all time. But attitudes about abortion are situational, historic and geographic.

My work to open Choices East, a satellite of Choices Women’s Medical Center in New York, in the former Soviet Union was inspired by a 35-year-old woman who came to our medical center for her 36th abortion. Like so many other Russian émigré women living in New York, she was violently opposed to using birth control because her Russian doctor taught her that "the Pill" was far more dangerous than repeat abortions. This misinformation benefited Russian physicians because they could earn extra money doing abortions on women in their homes to supplement their three dollars a month salary. Other forms of contraception were unavailable for all practical purposes. For these women, the "issue" of abortion posed no questions of morality, ethics, or women's rights versus fetal life.

Jill at Feministe has a truly odd post regarding Esquire’s profile of abortionist Warren Hern. After quoting a diatribe by Hern at length in which Hern calls the prolife movement a “fascist movement” and blames George Tiller’s murder on the “hate-speech” of prolifers, she writes about how dangerous it is to compare people to Nazis,
But one thing that Maddow points out is that the rhetoric used even by supposedly “mainstream” groups is intented to incite violence, even as they claim to abhor it. Nazi comparisons are the easy example — I think it’s one thing to say that someone’s views or beliefs are so extreme that they are reminiscent of popular views in Nazi Germany, or even to point out the similiarities between certain regressive, frighteningly controlling policies and the polices of fascist states. But accusations of Nazism, or being just like Hitler, evokes a particular response. It crosses a line to start arguing that a Democratic leader is basically a Nazi, or to say that healthcare is a “Hitler-like policy being heralded like a Hitler-like logo” and “Obama is asking citizens to rat each other out, just like Hitler did” (those are Rush Limbaugh quotes, for the record; apparently Hitler was extremely concerned with universal health care). As Maddow says, “He’s just like Hitler. And you know what that means he deserves, right?”
The argument seems to go something like this: prolifers shouldn’t compare abortion to genocide or used Hitler/Nazi comparisons because they could incite violence.

But in the next two paragraphs of the Esquire piece from which Jill quoted Hern, the writer briefly defends Bill O’Reilly's right to free speech and then Hern responds by saying this:
He's full of (expletive). This is not a debate, it's a civil war. And the other people are using bullets and bombs. I think O'Reilly is a fascist, and he would fit right in in Nazi Germany as far as I'm concerned.
According to Jill, Hern is correct to call prolifers “fascists” and deplore their use of hot rhetoric and saying Bill O’Reilly would have “fit right in in Nazi Germany” is not comment worthy but if prolifers claim that abortion providers kill babies and slaughter innocents, we’re over the line. Double standard anyone???

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