Thursday, September 09, 2010


Via Megan at the Abortion Gang blog comes an explanation for why she believes that life begins at birth:
My blood boils when I encounter anti-choice propaganda, but I realize that I'm on the feminist fringe when it comes to abortion rights. For me, life begins at birth. Not conception. Not implantation. Not when the fetus' heart begins to beat or when it develops the semblance of human phalanges. Life begins at birth because I care about women.

1 comment:

  1. "Life begins at birth because I care about women."

    Those two concepts don't logically belong together.

    "Life begins at birth..." = An (incorrect) claim to objective, biological fact.
    "... I care about women." = A subjective statement about values.

    How can an objective fact be determined by someone's values? It would make just as much sense for me to say, "Life begins at conception because I enjoy watching Mythbusters." Both claims are nonsense. The beginning of life is a matter of science. One's values are a matter of philosophy, culture, and a whole swarm of other factors.

    Of course, having read the whole article now, I don't think that Megan's point is really about the beginning of life. It seems more likely that Megan's point is something more like, "Women should be allowed to do whatever they want to do until birth -- no questions asked -- because I believe that women's rights are absolute."

    It's not so much that she's trying to obfuscate the beginning of life; it's more that her absolutist vision of women's rights leaves no other possibility. The life of the child doesn't matter. It might be alive. It might not be alive. If the child's rights conflict with the mother's rights, then the child has got to go. (Assuming that Megan would credit children with any rights at all....)

    It would be interesting to see if Megan would be willing to extend these absolute rights after birth. What if the doctors miss some massive birth defect, and a woman "accidentally" gives birth to a "defective" child? Can the child make a claim upon her simply because the child has been born? Why?

    Why does a woman have an absolute right to kill her child before birth, but no rights whatsoever after birth?