From the US? Considering an abortion? Go to, a database of abortion malpractice information in the USA.

"When we consider that women are treated as property, it is degrading to women that we should treat our children as property to be disposed of as we see fit." Elizabeth Cady Stanton



Friday, 17 August 2012

Sometimes I wonder

Sometimes I wonder why I have to care so much.

Life would be so much easier ...

If I didn't know that millions and millions of unborn babies have been violently killed.

If I didn't know that there are respected scholars that advocate for the use of infanticide.

If I didn't know that there are still people in this world who discriminate based on sex or ability.

If I didn't know that there are medical ethicists who believe that good parenting means babies should be screened in utero for "lesser genes" and then killed if they don't make the cut.

If I didn't know that people see no problem with implying that those with Down Syndrome are ugly or sub-par.

If I didn't know that Canada is on the verge of legalizing assisted suicide and euthanasia - because suicide prevention is only a noble goal if your trying to save someone young and healthy and healthcare is just so expensive.

If I didn't know that there are people who are being tortured, burned, stoned, crucified, and murdered for their beliefs.

If I didn't know that millions of girls are missing through female feticide and gendercide.

If I didn't know that women in China are forced to undergo abortions, or are fined ridiculous sums of money just for the right to remain pregnant.

If I didn't know that there are regular, everyday people who support all of the above things.

Sometimes the world just looks so bleak that I don't know what to do with myself.
My greatest dream in life is to become a mom, but when I get overwhelmed by the negativity I wonder what the point of having a child would be.
How could I bring someone else into this mess?
How do I keep my sense of hope alive?

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Canadian Doctors: "You Aren't a Human Until You're Born"

Found through a ProWomenProLife blogpost "When Doctors Get Political":

"More than 250 delegates to the Canadian Medical Association's annual general council meeting Wednesday supported maintaining a section of the Criminal Code that declares a child becomes a human being at the moment of birth."

Read more of the article here.

This is infuriating. Like Andrea says, what exactly is the point of in-utero surgery if life doesn't begin until after birth? Why does the baby kick, move, smile, cry, suck its thumb, learn to recognize voices, and practice breathing if it just isn't really alive until after birth? Why do premature babies survive?

This little guy is not a human being. It's true
because doctors said it!

So many questions because the logic here just defies reason.

I mean, I can allllllmost kinda / maybe / sorta understand not wanting to define zygotes, embryos, and really early-term fetuses as "alive" (where "alive" is really a euphemism for "person"). After all, they don't really look human, and our history is chalk-full of people looking at someone who is different, and decided that makes them non-human. It is common (sadly). It even makes sense in a supremely horrifying twisted-logic kind of way.

What doesn't make sense is the medical community's absolute, unbending official support for late term abortions. Not just late term abortions mind you, but late term abortions for any reason whatsoever. Because in Canada, we have absolutely no laws against those things. Oh, that baby you're currently giving birth to? Its life hasn't begun unless its teeny little pinky toe has finally wiggled its way all the way out of your vagina. That late-term fetus that can survive on its own if birth is induced? Not alive. That baby that is a couple of days past its due date but just doesn't seem to want to leave the warmth and darkness of your uterus? Also not alive. And btw, you can kill (no wait, terminate. They aren't alive so they can't be killed. Slip of the tongue, sorry!) all those babies if you suddenly decide at the last minute that you just don't want a child.

This just goes to show that the abortion debate is not solely about bodily autonomy and all those poor women whose birth control failed but they were SO responsible and just don't want to be pregnant, so they totally deserve a second chance (no one mentions that the "second chance" involves the destruction of their own family - but whatevs, that's the price we lowly women have to pay to be equal (I just feel SO empowered by the establishment that refuses to acknowledge the humanity of my children, don't you ladies?)!).

But to get back to my point. The abortion debate, at least in Canada, is not just about bodily autonomy. If it was, and the only issue with pregnancy was that the woman's child was using her body without her permission, then late-term abortions would be outlawed. As soon as a baby had an even slim chance of surviving, abortion would not be an option. Induced labour would replace abortion, and (problem solved!!!!) the woman wouldn't be pregnant anymore and *gasp* her baby would live!  

But for some reason that's just not okay. Even the slightest indication that some un-born babies could be considered "alive" is met with absolute hysteria by not only the self-proclaimed "feminist" movement, but also by the medical community. Feminists at least have an excuse in that they can force themselves to be ignorant of the facts - but doctors have no excuse. They study life and death, and they know that defining life to begin at birth makes no kind of logical sense.

They also know that some babies that are aborted can survive on their own. 

And if you don't believe that the suggestion that life doesn't begin at birth induces hysteria, just read this jewel of a statement:

"This attempt to modify the definition of a human being could legally recognize the fetus, which would give the fetus rights,” said Montreal physician Dr. Genevieve Desbiens. “This constitutes a recriminalization, not only of abortion, but any form of contraception."

Because trying to not get pregnant in the first place is totally the same as killing your son or daughter. Right. I wonder if she knows that she's spewing the exact kind of logic most people in North America reject as hopelessly fundamentalist Christian? ... or wait! Does this mean that she agrees that some forms of contraception can induce early abortion? I thought that was just pro-life scare-mongering?

Wait a second. She said "any form of contraception". Am I missing something here? How exactly do barrier methods and NFP harm unborn babies? Is she really implying that all forms of contraception induce abortions? Or maybe she just wants to be sensational to drum up popular support?

I'm going to go with the second one.

tsk tsk. A doctor involved in propaganda. Who would have thunk it.

This quote is also awesome:

"This could prevent a pregnant woman from traveling or taking certain drugs to protect the child she’s carrying."

 So lets get this straight. If I'm pregnant, and my baby is considered alive, I won't be able to travel anywhere? Anywhere at all? What if I wanted to drive a couple of hours into the next city? Or hop on an hour-long train ride to see my family? Or maybe hop on a plane to go to the Olympics (guess what, that happened in 2012, and a doctor had the professional opinion that the baby would be fine - so which is it doctors? Does traveling always hurt a baby and will it always be illegal for pregnant mum's to travel, or are there cases where travel makes no difference at all?) And I won't be able to take any drugs? None at all? Or just the kind that might hurt my baby and provide no real benefit for myself? We really need to quantify this statement here, because currently, its a blanket statement that can be shown to be false in some (if not many) circumstances and ... but wait. Is the good doctor really saying that my baby doesn't deserve protection?

Yes, I think she is.

I guess she's fine with pregnant mom's drinking and smoking then.


So guess what mom's-"to-be"? Those adorable little bundles of joy you've been lugging around with you all this time aren't, by definition, human beings (at least according to Canadian doctors and politicians). And they aren't alive, even though you can feel them move, even though you can treat them for diseases in utero, and even though they will be born knowing how to recognize your voice because they learned how while safe in your womb. And this is the consensus, because, well, science!!! And abortion makes women equal and contraception will be outlawed and all you pregnant women won't be able to travel if your babies are considered people and you won't be able to take drugs and all that. Those are totally scientific reasons to label unborn babies as "not human".



Some thoughts from Canadian pro-life groups:
Preborn Human Rights: CMA dismisses science in favour of feminist ideology
CCBR: Canadian Physicians: No To Genital Mutilation, Yes To Decapitation?
ProWomenProLife: When political statements supercede biology

Friday, 10 August 2012

Olympic Politics

I had to share this blogpost I found because reading it made me very annoyed.

Here is where my problem lies:

"... the media here in Australia began to pus the "female athlete as warrier" idea in the promotional videos ... it was difficult not to notice the mannish physiques of the female competitors - for the swimmers wide shoulders, flat breasts and narrow hips, for the runners flat breasts and six packs [interjection: google is trying to spell check 'breasts' into 'tits' ... f**k you google]. And then the notion was pushed that we were supposed to celebrate these body types as the new female sexy ... I told myself that it was only elite athletes who would disfigure their bodies in this way and that most women who took up running and swimming would just add a bit of tone to their physiques. And then the female boxing started. I just turned off the TV and pretended it didn't exist ... But last night I switched on and the first thing I saw was two women kicking each other's heads (I think it was Taekwondo). Enough. If that's the Olympics I don't care for it any longer. "

Seriously? Being healthy is somehow "disfiguring" one's body? Women taking part in boxing and Taekwondo is somehow a terrible thing (no mention, however, of how terrible it is that men also participate in such inherently violent sports!)?

Katie Taylor, Irish  four-time lightweight world champion,
and an apparently "disfigured" woman. I actually think
she's quite pretty.

No mention of how disgusting it is that all the media seems able to focus on is the athletes' bodies and worry about whether athletic women are "sexy" or not; when instead the real issue is whether or not they are actually good at what they have trained years and years to do. No mention about how extreme weightlifting (with all those popping out muscles!) somehow disfigures men's bodies.  No complaints over the crap women athletes sometimes go through - from the outright dismissal of women in sports (I can't tell you how many times I have heard people say that women's sports are just not as exciting to watch as men's sports - simply because they are women), to the inability of the media and the world to treat these women athletes as anything except sex kittens (and when women defy this notion, they are often treated with outright disrespect - from making fun of their "manly" bodies to making fun of their convictions).

Apparently Jessica Ennis is androgynous.
I just can't tell if she's a woman or not, can you?

The only legitimate point here is the author's issue with the reporter's reaction to rhythmic gymnastics - I agree that was stupid:

"I was very disappointed when I sat down with her [the reporters daughter] just now to watch the Olympics and NBC is broadcasting Rhythmic Gymnastics. That's five beautiful young ladies dressed in skimpy outfits, wearing too much makeup, each prancing around the floor tossing a ball in the air."

Those women are in the Olympics for goodness sake! Just because they look pretty doing it does not negate all the hard work and sacrifices they made to get to this point! And I'd like to see this reporter "prance around" the way these women do!    

Why do we have an obsession with women's bodies? Who cares if women are toned, with flatter breasts and smaller hips? Who cares if they're wearing make-up? Who cares if they aren't?
Gold-medal winner Meseret Defar just going ahead and
defying some more stereotypes! I heart her hugely! I wonder
if she would be "womanly" enough for this blogger?
What about focusing on how amazing our women athletes are, instead of worrying about whether they are "womanly" enough or "manly" enough? It's downright ridiculous. If I had spent years training for a single event, and all the world could focus on was my abs, my arms, my outfit, or my make-up, I would be extremely pissed off. What about my talent, my hard work, and my SPORT? Hello???

Apparently (according to some reporter) doing this means
you somehow are no longer worthy of admiration or status
as an athlete. Because this doesn't require hard work,
training, strength, and skill at all, right?

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Importing Strippers to Canada

I recently tweeted a news article from the HuffPo (originally released by the CBC I believe) on a Canadian policy change which does not allow foreign sex trade workers to renew their visa's. You can read the article here. The article was posted on Facebook by a friend of mine, a self-proclaimed pro-choice feminist, and it bothered me enough that I haven't been able to stop thinking about it.

The first thing that struck me about this article was the lack of information and analysis. I just read over the article now, and they recently changed it to include an "opposing view" - some sound bites from the Anti-Human Trafficking Action Group of Windsor, which are carefully quoted to imply that the girls in question in  this article are not in danger for exploitation. Beyond that, there is no inclusion of statistics or studies done on the psychological and physical well-being of exotic dancers, specifically exotic dancers brought in from other countries. This does a serious injustice to women who are involved in the sex industry, as it implies that all foreign dancers in Canada are living good lives, making good money, and are not being exploited by their employers. I can only suspect that this is far from the truth.

The second thing that I think people should focus on when reading this article is where the reporters are getting their information. Rob Katzman, the Director of the Adult Entertainment Association of Canada, is extensively quoted and his words are implicitly assumed to be true in the article.

For instance:

""there is not one bit of empirical data that there is exploitation going on in our industry," especially not at his two clubs.

In 2011, Katzman had 170 women dancing in his clubs and 30 of them were temporary foreign workers. The women came from Poland, Iceland, England, Estonia, and Germany. All have proper paperwork and credentials, he said. All are aware of their rights, Katzman claimed.

"They know the law as well as we do," he said. "Believe me, they complain if the soap dispenser is near empty." [...]

"They aren't the type of ladies who want to do anything but obey the laws," Katzman said. [...]

"We want girls who come from nice families," he insisted. "We just don't have enough Canadian gals to fill the positions." [...]

"The adult industry has no intention to recruit in high schools. That's not the way we do business ... I think [the Toronto strip club owner claiming he would recruit high school students] was a demonstration of his frustration of the situation.""

The article completely ignores the fact that he has a financial stake in the situation. The readers are supposed to take for granted that what he says is true. And the assumption is that stripping itself is not a demeaning and exploitative job - which is a question that anyone considering the safety and psychological well-being of sex workers should at least think hard about.

So we have the Director of the Adult Entertainment Association of Canada extensively quoted in the article. We have the article set up so that his words are implicitly assumed to be a true and accurate representation of the exotic dancer industry in Canada. Do we also hear from the girls themselves?

Sort of.

One exotic dancer from Iceland is quoted, but she is quoted on the condition of anonymity, and no other girls are discussed or quoted. This leads me to believe that the reporters indeed only spoke to one of the 30 foreign workers employed in Katzman's clubs. Hardly a decent representation, especially when the only girl willing to speak in an interview demands to not be named. And especially when this sole girl is speaking on behalf of her employer, who is the focus of this news article.

I have to say that this is a very one-sided news article on the Adult Entertainment Industry's recruitment of foreign "gals".

The worst part of the article?

"One Icelandic dancer, who spoke to CBC Windsor on the condition of anonymity, said she owned two businesses back home. But when the economy went south, she headed to Canada to become a dancer.

"That's why I became a stripper," she said. "We're making good money. We're not stripping for alcohol or drugs.""

What is the implication here?

First, that these women are desperate for money and so became strippers. Hardly a note in favor of the recruitment of foreign workers for exotic dancing.

Second, that in an economic downturn, a woman in dire straights can always just take her clothes off to make some money.

Why is the article satisfied that women must turn to stripping to make a living? Why does the article imply that making money by dancing in strip clubs is a "good" thing as long as it is "good money" and the women come from "nice families" and are not spending their money on things that we deem inappropriate? How is this a satisfactory set of circumstances for women's rights and equality?

One thing is for certain, it is definitely a satisfactory set of circumstances for Katzman.

Well, it was. Until July 4th, when it became illegal for any employer to hire a temporary foreign worker linked to the sex trade. Now he'll have to find Canadian women (who aren't in school) to work for him, which apparently is hard to do.

I wonder why?

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Quote of the Week: "Open hearts. Open minds. Fair-minded words."

I was re-reading Obama's controversial Notre Dame commencement speech, and there were many things that I found very interesting in retrospect, especially with all the controversy surrounding the health care mandate. Here's an excerpt:

"[We] must find a way to live together as one human family [...] no one person, or religion, or nation can meet these challenges alone. Our very survival has never required greater cooperation ... Unfortunatly, finding that common ground ... is not easy. [...] Is it possible for us to join hands in common effort? As citizens of a vibrant and varied democracy, how do we engage in vigorous debate? How does each of us remain firm in our principles, and fight for what we consider right, without demonizing those with just as strongly held convictions on the other side? Nowhere do these questions come up more powerfully than on the issue of abortion. As I considered the controversy surrounding my visit here, I was reminded of an encounter I had during my Senate campaign [with a pro-life doctor ...] He wrote, 'I do not ask at this point that you oppose abortion, only that you speak about this issue in fair-minded words.' [...] when we open our hearts and our minds to those who may not think like we do or believe what we do - that's when we discover at least the possibility of common ground. That's when we begin to say, 'Maybe we won't agree on abortion, but we can still agree that this is a heart-wrenching decision for any woman to make, with both moral and spiritual dimensions. So lets work together to reduce the number of women seeking abortions by reducing unintended pregnancies, and making adoption more available, and providing care and support for women who do carry their child to term. Let's honor the conscience of those who disagree with abortion, and draft a sensible conscience clause, and make sure that all of our health care policies are grounded in clear ethics and sound science, as well as respect for the equality of women. Understand - I do not suggest that the debate surrounding abortion can or should go away [...] the fact is that at some level, the views of the two camps are irreconcilable. Each side will continue to make its case to the public with passion and conviction. But surely we can do so without reducing those with differing views to caricature. Open hearts. Open minds. Fair-minded words."
-President Obama

Read the full speech at the Huffington Post

Friday, 3 August 2012

Opposing View of the Week: "Abortion and the Law" from Antigone Awakens

This post was brought to my attention by pro-choice tweeter @heather_parker during a discussion on the rights of the zygote/embryo/fetus (ZEF) vs. the rights of the mother. The blog is called Antigone Awakens (not quite sure what the author is going for there, but the "i" is a little washroom women figure - kinda cute!), and the title of the blog post is "Abortion and the Law".

For your background, here is our twitter convo:

 @heather_parker's first tweet was in response to a retweet of one of Life Reports podcasts - you can listen to that particular podcast, "What makes human beings valuable?", here.

Now, let me preface my response to "abortion and the Law" by first saying that I do not believe that either the ZEF's or the mother's rights are more important than the others - their rights are, in my opinion, equal in value and consideration. They are both, after all, human, and so both have basic human rights (including the rights to life and liberty).

The million dollar question therefore is: does the baby encroach on the rights of the mother, or does the mother encroach (through abortion) on the rights of the baby?

From the author, Heather's friend "J":

"Here's where what you believe meets what actually is."

Ugh. Don't you just love it when people are condescending? That being said, what "actually is" is actually what is under debate (btw, if you're wondering, I had fun writing this sentence!). What I, and other prolifers, believe is that the unborn baby "actually is" a person, endowned with all the basic rights born people should enjoy - with the addition of a right that children enjoy. That is, the right to basic care (and children deserve this right because, self-evidently, they are not able to achieve their right to life without the aid of someone older than themselves).

"The real issue is whether [the fetus] is a person [in the legal sense]. If it is a person, then it has a right to life. If it is not a person, it has no constitutional rights at all."

We agree on this one. It is very rare to find a pro-choicer willing to admit that this is the major question in the abortion debate. Awesome!

"The woman is a person. There is no issue with that. It is not a matter of debate."

It was once. And it still is in many corners of the globe. And this is one thing I find very disturbing about pro-abortion/pro-choice feminists - they are having the very same debate about their children that was once applied to them - that is, whether certain individuals are property or people.

"[The woman] has certain liberty interests that are constitutionally protected. One of those is privacy: the right to be left alone."

The right to privacy is very much a conditional standard. If you are committing a crime, and the police have probable cause, then you no longer have the right to be left alone. You get arrested, your house is searched (providing there is reason for the issue of a warrant), and you go to jail. Or, a more apt example would be child abuse. Should child protection services have reason to believe you are neglecting or abusing your children in some way, you no longer have the right to be left alone. The government enters your life, makes your business its business, and can even go so far as to take away your wanted children - all in order to protect your children's rights. And so we come back to the central question: does the unborn baby have rights, and are these rights worth protecting?

"The issues of abortion, pregnancy, and family are private matter which the woman is entitled to control and safeguard against government interference. So what you have now is a situation where a non-person would have greater rights than a person."

This is the author's premise (which, in the case of family, we have already established to be untrue in cases of abuse). "J" has not, in any way, shape, or form, proven or supported this premise. So forgive me if I ignore the "non-person having greater rights than a person" argument, because the author has not proven that the baby is not a person. While it is true that the baby is currently not defined as a person in US (or Canadian) law, that does not mean that the current law is correct. Otherwise women, blacks, Jews, Native Americans, people with disabilities (etc. ...) were all once non-persons who only became people once governments decided to define them as such. And I sincerely hope that we don't look to the government alone to define for us who is or is not a person, because they have (evidently!) been very, very wrong in the past.

The second thing that the author needs to defend, and has yet to do so, is why providing babies with a right not-to-be-killed (i.e.: a right to life) somehow gives the baby greater rights than the mother. I contest that this is not so. But right now, the burden is on Heather and "J" to explain exactly why an unborn baby is not a person, and why its right to life gives it greater rights than the mother (after all, the unborn baby, in the vast, vast (it cannot be said enough) vast majority of cases does not threaten the mother's life, nor her liberty, nor her pursuit of happiness - unless one wants to argue that pregnant women are willing slaves to their unborn children - and I hope that sounds as ridiculous to you, dear readers, as it does to me).

"There are major major problems with defining a fetus as a person ... [including] the government suddenly having the ability to control everything about a pregnant woman's life from her diet to her workout schedule specifically because the fetus now has liberty and life rights. The slippery slope there is too great. Every study that came out saying that mothers who watched TV while pregnant had higher incidence of miscarriage would potentially result in government intervention in the TV-watching habits of pregnant women - you know, because they have to protect the person that is the fetus."

Bravo, excellent job of fear-mongering, and excellent use of the fallacy form of the "slippery slope" rhetorical device. This is a fallacy here for two reasons: (1) The author ignores any possibility of a middle ground and (2) the author does not demonstrate a process which could lead to this extreme state of government control. This slippery slope is very obviously, ridiculous. To demonstrate, let us compare pregnancy to a natural, common relationship that is as close to pregnancy as possible - that is, the relationship between parents and the born children who are under their care. There are countless studies which show that the things that parents allow their kids to do every day may not be in the best interests of their kids' health: watching TV, eating candy, eating fast food and heavily processed food, playing video games, watching R-rated movies, drinking alcohol, smoking around their kids, raising kids as a single parent, raising kids in a home where both parents are working ... the list goes on. Kids who eat lots of junk food and sit around watching TV and playing video games are more likely to be fat, and have all the toher health problems that come along with poor diet and exercise habits. Kids who watch violent and sexually explicit movies at a young age can be adversely affected emotionally. Kids who are raised by single mothers are more likely to grow into a life of drugs and crime. Kids who have a sip of beer or wine from a parent's cup (and teenagers whose parents allow them to drink at home) have underdeveloped brains which could be adversely affected by alcohol. Working parents do not have as much time as stay at home moms and dads do to spend time with and care exclusively for their children. But do you see the government jumping in and controlling every aspect of these parents' lives, even once these children exhibit negative health consequences unto natural death? Do you see the government mandating that one parent must stay at home, that single mothers must marry to give their children fathers, that parents must serve only certain foods at certain times to their children, and that children are only allowed to sit in front of a TV for a certain number of hours a week - all this, of course, to ensure that children are cared for in the very best way possible that research can demonstrate?

No, you don't see this happening. And you don't see this, in spite of the fact that kids are considered people under the law, and kids really are at the mercy of their parents' habits and customs.

What you do see is the government becoming involved in the severe cases - cases where children's lives are threatened to an unnatural degree: where they are neglected, starved, beaten, and not cared for in even the most basic of ways.

That is when the government becomes involved in the care of vulnerable people (or rather, vulnerable humans - humans just like unborn babies).

So please, spare me the whole "women's lives will be controlled in every imaginable way" sob story. It is not true. If it becomes true, we'll have a lot more to worry about than just pregnant women being controlled by the government, because the exact same thing will happen to anyone who has a vulnerable person under their care.

"This is why, regardless of whether you find abortion morally or religiously offensive, you cannot legislate on it."

The vast majority of countries on this earth, who actually do have laws regarding abortion (including western countries who are largely considered to be "free" nations), would beg to differ. This also contradicts an earlier statement by the author - specifically, if unborn children are people then they have a right to life. "J" completely ignores this question and claims that they cannot be considered people, not because of any intrinsic characteristics of the unborn babies themselves, but because of the supposed consequences of this view, which "J" has yet to demonstrate as plausible.

"you don't like abortion, don't have one."

This is a tired, worn-out, ridiculous statement that, quite frankly, pro-choicers should stop using. Replace "abortion" with anything else, and you can see how ridiculous it sounds when the person you are talking to believes abortion is a grave human rights violation. You aren't convincing any pro-lifers by using this statement, after all, we can just shoot back: "Don't like rape? Don't rape someone. Don't like slavery? Don't own a slave. Don't like mobs? Don't participate in one. See how ridiculous that sounds?" ... and on and on we go, constantly talking past one another. 

"[T]he personhood status of women who are already here, already independent human entities, has to be eroded. You cannot have both women and fetuses be considered persons. It is a legal impossibility."

Why? Please, try to explain this without using a fallacy. And while you're at it, explain why conjoined twins also cannot be considered persons under the law.

"So if the "right to life" movement wants to end abortion, they're going to have to focus on alternative ways"

Oh gee, its a good thing we are already doing that then! (hint hint: pregnancy care centers are just one example of this).

"[P]rohibitions on abortion are notoriously ineffective in reducing the incidence of terminated pregnancy"

Given the difficulty of obtaining statistics for abortions performed legally vs. illegally, and (in Canada at least), the utter failure of the government to compile any kind of reliable stats on abortion at all, this statement is absolutely impossible to prove or disprove and should not be presented as absolute fact. This, or course, ignores the inherent fallacious nature of such a "it will happen anyway" argument. Just because something will happen anyway, does not mean that it should be legal, nor does it necessarily mean that it should be illegal either. Criminal activity happens whether we legislate against it or not - does that mean murder, theft, slander, drugs, domestic violence, or child abuse should be legal? Nope. "It will happen anyway" is a statement which neither supports nor denies a particular thesis, and should not be present in any discussion of the legality or the ethics of any action, including abortion.

"That's it, that's the abortion issue in a nutshell."

Actually, the author ignored pretty much every opjection that pro-lifers have to abortion, and the ones he or she did mention were not refuted. So no, this is not the abortion issue in a nutshell. This is the author's opinion, presented as argument, and supported by fallacies, in a nutshell. 

"All this other crap about people accepting responsibility for their actions, taking advantage of the abortion "faucet", respecting life, or whatever your emotional argument is, that's all completely irrelevant."

Right, because claiming that illegal abortion will lead to the utter and complete control of women's lives by the government is not emotional at all.

And if one dismisses "respecting life" as an emotional argument, one has relegated to the corner a compelling reason against murder and abuse. After all, are we not called to respect the people around us? And I would be seriously surprised if the author did not believe in personal responsibility. Otherwise, I hope she spends just as much time protesting against the legal system which assumes personal responsibility in order to charge people for their possible crimes and the consequences of such crimes (for instance - drunk driving. People who drive intoxicaed to not mean to get into accidents, and yet, if they do they are considered responsible for the destruction that their intoxication caused).

"... your purpose is to blame women for pregnancy in an effort to imply they are not really entitled to personhood status."

Hyperbole, ridiculousness, and a blatant attempt to completely disregard and misunderstand the actual pro-life position. Also, it is true that the vast majority of abortions are performed on women who risked the possibility of pregnancy by engaging in consensual sex. This is not a "blame" game - this is a fact. Pregnancy can lead to babies. Shocking, I know. But true nonetheless. Accepting reality does not mean you are "blaming" someone for something. And pregnant women, simply by virtue of being pregnant, are not denied their personhood, nor any of their rights. Unless you bleieve that people have rights which allow them to kill someone who does not threaten their own lives in any way. And from the standpoint that we all have a right to life, this is utterly ridiculous.

As for the "Note on international human rights, rather than US Consitutional rights": this is simply a reminder of what pro-lifers are attempting to change. We know that the unborn are not considered persons. We know that they currently do not enjoy a codified right to life. Quoting articles which are formed based off this understanding does not present an argument - it presents a conclusion, and as such, it is not something that will convince anyone who has an opposing view. 

Now, I spent most of this article demonstrating how the author(s) did not do a good job of arguing the case for legal abortion, but I did not make a complete case in opposition. So please refer to my blog posts here and here, which discuss whether or not a woman has a responsibility towards her unborn child. Also, please see discussions from Life Report here and here on this topic. I also am in the process of compiling essays and arguments for/against bodily autonomy as I have come across them (along with other issues related to the abortion debate) - you can find them here.

In conclusion, I wish to summarize what I believe Heather and J's main points are:

(1) Unborn children are not considered persons and are not endowed with the right to life in either the US consitution or in international human rights documents.
(2) Giving the unborn a right to life or personhood status necessarily degrades the rights of the pregnant women by subjecting her to government control and violating her privacy.
(3) Abortions happen anyway, whether illegal or legal.

Here are my main points in response:

(1) This is not an argument, it is a conclusion, and it is the very thing that pro-lifers are trying to change.
(2) This conclusion ignores any possibility of reasonable middle ground and is demonstrably false when compared to any other relationship in which one of the persons involved is vulnerable.
(3) This is not an arugment in favour of either legality or illegality; it is simply a statement which can by applied to any legal or illegal action.

But again, for an in-depth discussion of the pro-life perspective on this topic please read through the links I provided above.

That's all for now! Let me know if you think I have misunderstood Heather's and J's arguments in any way! Ciao :)