Abortion: Official discussion v.4

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by KnightWriter, Nov 5, 2005.

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  1. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    The impending retirement of Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, confirmation of Justice John Roberts and nomination of Judge Samuel Alito has rekindled the debate over Roe v. Wade in ways that arguably haven't existed since 1992's Planned Parenthood v. Casey. Instead of changes to the existing law being mere conjecture or hypothesis, there is the possibility that the Supreme Court may (with the retirement of O'Connor and confirmation of Alito, and a case to actually work with) someday change the abortion debate in dramatic (or not so dramatic) ways.

    It goes without saying that the debate over abortion is one of the most contentious in politics today. However, what sometimes gets overlooked is the uncertainty and debate within each main camp (pro-life and pro-choice). The nuances of the abortion debate are something we should all keep in mind as we give our opinions on the issue, rather than relying on concrete, boring and cliché arguments that have been made countless times throughout the world and the web.

    Abortion obviously means a great deal to a lot of people, and so of course there is emotion on all (i.e. more than two) sides. Please keep this in mind as we discuss abortion itself, the law as it relates to abortion, possible changes to those laws and the political ramifications if changes are made to the law in the future.

    With that, I open version four of this discussion.
  2. Darth Mischievous Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 12, 1999
    star 6
    Roe is bad law, not simply because of the moral implications of abortion. The case was a strech from Griswold v. Connecticut which stated that a married couple had a right to take birth control pills, and the State law invading the rights of married couples to take such pills were violated. It had nothing to do with termination, nor with single women or any other woman having an abortion.

    If Roe is overturned, it will simply go to the States, where legislatures will pass it into legal law or ban it based upon the democratic will of the people.

    Nowhere in the US Constitution does it convey the right of a woman to an abortion.

    There is a process for granting rights not stated within the Constitution, and that is the Amendment process. The same applied to slavery in the U.S. before the document was Amended to ban it, as the USSC had no authority to throw it out.

    They had no authority to impose such societal change when no such right exists within the document. So, they legislated law into effect granting rights.

    I personally am opposed to abortion; however, I am fine with the law if it passes via legitimate means (by the people). If the Constitution is to be lasting, it must be followed and not amended and streched to oblivion by personal political opinion of justices on the court.

    Do it the right way if it has to be done legally.

    The same goes for gay marriage and a host of other social issues that aren't granted rights within our Constitution. Let the legislative process work to grant the right as it is meant to be done if that is the will of the people.
  3. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 9
    Just a minor note; could you please in future refer to the alleged moral implications of abortion?

    Some view abortion as murderous and immoral, some do not. We shall therefore try and find a way of speaking that doesn't automatically and therefore arrogantly presuppose one side is right and the other, wrong.

    E_S
  4. Darth Mischievous Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 12, 1999
    star 6
    It isn't arrogant for one to take on a firm belief in something and abide by that belief, and that includes the belief that abortion is amoral and evil when used as basically a contraceptive when no threat to the life of the mother and/or no situation involving forcible rape or incest exists.

    However, that was besides the point in my above post which had more to do with the legal nature of the situation rather than any personal feelings I have towards the subject.
  5. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 9
    No, but it is arrogant when you decide you're right and others are wrong. That's what I'm suggesting we avoid, to give this discussion a chance at not dissolving into yet another petty slugfest. ;)

    E_S
  6. Darth Mischievous Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 12, 1999
    star 6
    I don't wish it to turn into some petty slugfest, either.

    However, my personal beliefs are not negotiable in this issue, and I see it as a definitive right and wrong situation in the case I mentioned above. It isn't arrogant to believe proclaim belief in definitive right and wrong.

    I'm more concerned with discussing the process in this particular version of the thread, as I feel it is of utmost importance to uphold the nature of our Constitutional system by adhering to what is contained within the document as law and guidlines for granting rights and separation of powers.

    Social issues such as these are legislative in nature (as was slavery, for example) and the judiciary has no authority in amending the Constitution to include rights that do not exist within the document.

    If the people vote for legalized abortion en masse, then I would be content with that even as much as I may personally disagree with granting such a right. The same goes for gay marriage or any of these other social issues which have no rights conferred within the actual Constitutional document. Cases were decided upon personal beliefs and societal pressures in said issues, not formulated under any solid basis in Constitutional law.

    My concern is for the continuing stability of the Democratic Republic, and that the judiciary does not become an end-all oligarchy with political quasi-legislative creatures inhabiting the bench instead of those who uphold the law of the Constitution.
  7. DARTH-SHREDDER Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2005
    star 5
    Nowhere in the US Constitution does it convey the right of a woman to an abortion.

    But it also doesn't say she can't have an abortion.

    There is a process for granting rights not stated within the Constitution, and that is the Amendment process. The same applied to slavery in the U.S. before the document was Amended to ban it, as the USSC had no authority to throw it out.

    They had no authority to impose such societal change when no such right exists within the document. So, they legislated law into effect granting rights.


    Well, isn't that different since the constitution tells what the government can control, i.e. banning slavery, but legalizing aboritons does require the government to control anything so therefore the people can automatically do it unless the constitution says otherwise, right?

    I personally believe that abortion should be kept legal. I don't think it's killing because it's only a fetus at that stage and a fetus has about as much intelligence as cocroach, so if you're going to say that's killing you should say it's also killing to kill insects. And a baby would be better not living if it would grow not being wanted, or grow up with a mother who can't take care of it. More than that, it's not your decision what somebody else wants to do with their body. Some things are contraversial enough to leave it up to the person. Murdering a fully-grown human being is not one of them. Neither is stealing, but abortion is so contraversial I think it should be left up to the person instead of making a widespread law against as you would make for murdering a fully-grown human. We should respect the mother's decision in this case and not force our morals on her. :)

    shred edit: KnightWriter should be a Senate mod. :p
  8. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 9
    He was. :p

    E_S
  9. EnforcerSG Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2001
    star 4
    The 14th amendment says that one must be born to be subject to the jurisdiction of the USA (it?s the first words in that amendment). With that in mind, it is clear that the rights of the obviously already born mother should take president over what rights the unborn might have. How is it constitutional for a state to have laws opposing abortion when the Constitution so clearly states that?

    Also, the question of whether or not (or how) it is legal ignores the question of whether or not it is wrong. There could be nothing or everything wrong with having an abortion; the question of legality can ignore that.

    And there is the question of other nations. That has been something that many pro-life people have sort of ignored it seems (then again, I live in America so I may just do not notice those in other nations who are working through their legal constructs). If abortion is wrong, then it should be banned in all nations, so anything dealing with the Constitution and Sate vs Federal rights is rather weak in the large picture. With that in mind, it is much easier to debate if it is right or not in order to possibly get a clear answer to this debate.

    Also how would such a state law work? To actually save the unborn, it would have to be a crime to attempt an abortion, which gets into a very gray area. Would thinking about it be a crime? How would such a law to save the lives of the unborn work and how would it be enforced?

    Besides, I seriously doubt that anyone is opposed Roe only because of (possible) state right violations. I mean, is there anyone who is pro-choice and feels abortion in most cases is ok, but still feels that Roe was a bad court decision?

    Edit: Apparently I type very goodly.
  10. Cyprusg Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2002
    star 4

    Even though I'm 1000000% AGAINST abortion the Roe vs. Wade ruling was still a good ruling in a legal sense. If the war against abortion is going to be won it has to be won by winning over the people, not through conservative judges forcing their own idealogy onto the populous. I think the war CAN be won, but it has to be won with reasonable and sound arguments not with pure emotion or "because jesus told me so".
  11. WormieSaber Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 22, 2000
    star 5
    The war can be won with politics but that doesn't make abortion right or wrong, not just because a party is in agreement after a long while when it hasn't been. Though, call me Liberal, and I hate to say this, but if the abortion law is put back into order that will only suppress the female race once again. Unless the government wants to pay for all the medical costs of having a child when you are well over your head and so on of actually having the kid, not to mention the health risks and how is she going to work while being pregnant? So it's murder if you do, and if you don't, well then, deal with it. If you're married, happy cool. But if that's not always the case, as what Roe VS. Wade was all about, living in a trailer park with three kids and neither father paying child support. It'll just open the doors to suppression and the female race will be thrown back into the old days -- we'll see dead young girls in alleys and young guys fresh out of high school who have to pay child support.

    Some view abortion as murderous and immoral, some do not. We shall therefore try and find a way of speaking that doesn't automatically and therefore arrogantly presuppose one side is right and the other, wrong.


    It's in the grey because there is a time when it's right and when it's wrong. If we started instigating laws that would enforce huge life decisions and limitations on what a male could do with his own body, and then let's go hold up picket signs and bomb places about it what men are doing with their bodies? You can't get a visectomy if you wanted to, let's vote against that because you killing sperm that can make a baby. And another issue, what if the male can't afford child support? It can go the other way too. Until it's 18, guys. That's the law. I'd rather argue against Bush and what Bush has enforced...that once a fetus has been aborted, by law you must place it in an incubator. ? Ok, incubators will do good to an ill infant. But to a 2 month old fetus that is doomed to die anyway? Let's get real. That's not saving human life, that's opening the doors to the frankenstien times. Abortion is in the grey, and I don't think there will ever be a wide open agreement, or a win or a lose. There is a time when it's right and when it's wrong. Don't advocate with the dumb women who use it as a form of birth control, but they are what's bad about society. That's not helping the others who are sincere, and according to statistics, most abortions occur due to failed birth control...according to statistics. And, according to statistics, women have more miscarriages than abortions every year and it is a natural process. Obviously, the world isn't a perfect place and so we'll see dead young girls in some alley in the very near future just like in the good old days. Abortion is as clean and safe today as it's ever been. Nobody would give up a child for no good reason. Anyhow, I wouldn't give up my own but I wouldn't supress someone else either.
  12. DARTH-SHREDDER Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2005
    star 5
    that once a fetus has been aborted, by law you must place it in an incubator. ? Ok, incubators will do good to an ill infant. But to a 2 month old fetus that is doomed to die anyway? Let's get real.

    :confused:
  13. Suzuki_Akira Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 13, 2003
    star 7
    Tenth Amendment?

    You can't get a visectomy if you wanted to, let's vote against that because you killing sperm that can make a baby.

    A weak argument. A zygote is not comparable to a gamete at all. A zygote, genetically, is a human. Period. A gamete is not, it is just another - albeit crucial - part of the reproductive system.
  14. Darth Mischievous Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 12, 1999
    star 6
    The 10th Amendment says nothing concerning abortion nor gay marriage.

    Certainly, neither was considered a right when the Constitution was formulated, no?

    Nor did the Supreme Court have the right to throw out slavery, either, under that Amendment.

    You cannot insert meaning that doesn't exist within the Constitution to suit personal political whims.

    If one wants the rights granted under Constitutional law: then Amend the document to include the following:

    Amendment XXVIII

    Section 1. No citizen of the United States shall have their reproductive choices and rights denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account by method of contraception, abortion, and adoption.

    Section 2. Congress shall have the power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

  15. Obi-Wan McCartney Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 17, 1999
    star 5
    I don't think a zygote is a human anymore than a seed is a fruit/tree/plant.
  16. Suzuki_Akira Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 13, 2003
    star 7
    Which is completely incorrect. The entire purpose of the Tenth Amendment is to limit the powers of the federal government to those expressely stated in the Constitution, for good or ill. You use the example of slavery, which proves my point - an amendment was required to make that illegal. I am not 'inserting' anything when I say that the right to abortion has been given to the people, as it is now. Do I agree with it? No. But that's federal law.
  17. Darth Mischievous Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 12, 1999
    star 6
    But you're simply mistaken.

    There was no right to an abortion when the Constitution was formulated, and the USSC conveyed the right via their judgement above what was in the law. If no right existed until 1973 and no right specified within the Constitution, the States had the absolute right to determine that it was an illegal practice.

    Since no right is conveyed in the Constitution to such, the USSC overstepped its bounds by relying on a weak precedent set by Griswold v. Connecticut versus actually going by what is in the Constitution.

    If the legislature approves a Constitutional Amendment respecting the rights of reproductive choice, then that is a different story.

    They did it to allow women to vote and equal protection for the races minorities post slavery (the basis of Brown v. Board of Education).

    There simply is no reference to abortion within the document; therefore, the Amendment process is required to convey such rights. You simply want the document to say what you think it should say instead of what it actually does say, and ignoring the separation of powers in the process.

    The USSC's role was supposed to be limited in situations like these.
  18. Jansons_Funny_Twin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2002
    star 6
    Not does it convey the right for any yokel to own as many guns of any type as he wants.

    Seems very specific about needing to be in a well regulated militia.

    However, we can infer that, since militias are no longer necessary to the security, that people should still be able to bear arms.

    Likewise, we can infer from other Amendments that there is a right to privacy, and the ability to do with one's own body what they will.




    Squ33k!
  19. Darth Mischievous Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 12, 1999
    star 6
    The 2nd Amendment is a certain Constitutional guarantee for an individual (not an insulting term 'yokel' to describe gun owners) to own a weapon, unlike any granted abortion rights.

    It specifically states:

    the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.


    Many just simply wish to ignore it, and do what is generally in that frame of political thought: stretch the Constitution into ways that coincide with a political point of view.

    Regardless of that, the 2nd Amendment has nothing to do with the topic on hand.

    ---

    Think of it this way:

    You're demonstrating that it is a right for women to obtain medical services for termination of a pregnancy.

    If that were not so, then is it an inherent right of a woman to take a stick and beat her stomach until the unborn within is expelled? If a woman had an inherent right to such a practice, that would also include such barbarity.

    However, it isn't seen in that light: it is said that woman have a Constitutional right to termination of a pregnancy involving healthcare procedures.

    No such conveyence of that right exists within the document.


    First, there is no reference to inherent reproductive issues like contraception or abortion in the document. Therefore, it is an issue for the States or for the Amendment process.

    Second, there is no inherent right to healthcare found within the Constitution.

    Therefore, to convey those rights - in appropriate fashion in our Constitutional system - it is necessary for the document to be amended to include those types of rights. These were not rights at the formulation of the constitution (nor were allowing women the right to vote, another case of the document having to be amended where the court has no jurisdiction to act).

  20. darth_paul Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 24, 2000
    star 5
    Is the beating-self-with-stick thing illeal? Could a woman be prosecuted for doing that? Because I agree, it seems to me that the constitutional argument would have to permit that -- right-to-privacy issues where one's body are concerned clearly do not apply only inside the doctor's office. But has the right really been interpreted only to exist in a medical environment? This is a totally informational question, as I have little idea on the subject; if that's the way it's been read, I'd be interested in names of cases that established that.

    -Paul
  21. Darth Mischievous Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 12, 1999
    star 6
    In the ruling Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the USSC implied that a woman does not have a right to self-abort.

    See here.

    Self-abortion is a personal act performed by a woman on her own body. Despite its private nature, self-abortion is not a fundamental right. Under the Glucksberg analysis, a right cannot be considered fundamental unless it is "deeply rooted" in American history and tradition. The history of abortion law in England and the United States shows that self-abortion was not a "deeply rooted" right. Moreover, a state has also traditionally been able to enact paternalistic laws protecting a citizen from himself, as seen through the legal history of suicide. This traditional power of a state to protect a woman from herself further shows that self-abortion, an act that can result in serious injury to one's self, is not a fundamental right. Although the wisdom of criminally sanctioning a woman who would resort to such a dangerous and desperate measure is questionable, the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment does not encompass a right to self-abort at any time during pregnancy.


    Do you not see the paradox here?

    The Court is saying that a woman has a fundamental right to a healthcare procedure (abortion) for terminating a pregnancy based upon an inherent implied Constitutional right to do so, when such was illegal from the formulation of the Constitution until the USSC legislated the law into effect by unilaterally Amending the US Constitution in 1973.

    The right has been established to involve a medical environment, where no such right exists to any kind of healthcare to begin with.

    It is a paradox because of the claim of some inherent right to privacy but involving the right of a person to a medical procedure. There are no inherent rights stated within the US Constitution that grants citizens the right to specific healthcare procedures due to privacy issues.

    Simply stated, you can't demand healthcare based upon any inherent right for you to have a medical procedure performed on you.

    I don't have an implicit right to demand that my appendix be taken out if it ruptures, do I?

    What if I get testicular cancer? Do I demand that a hospital remove it?

    Can I claim a right to 'Due Process' to get a surgeon to remove my cancerous testicles if I have no insurance or no money to pay for the procedure?

    What if I need my wisdom teeth removed, and they could cause irrevocable harm to my gums? They could get infected and kill me. Can I demand that an oral surgeon or dentist remove my teeth based upon 'Due Process' because of potential harm that could come to me?

    Do you see the obvious bad law that Roe is, notwithstanding the fact that there is no Constitutional basis for said decision?

    There is no right to abortion found within the Constitution, it was a stretch made upon personal political opinions and societal pressure applied wrongly (to the judiciary instead of the legislature).

    There is also no right to healthcare within the United States, as it is not demonstrated to be so in the Constitution as well.

    Congress has approved measures to supplement funding for the poor for healthcare services (Medicaid, et al., perfectly legal), but no one can go into a hospital demanding a Constitutional right to 'Due Process' for any medical procedure.

    ----

    Again: If the people of the United States feel that reproductive choices such as abortion and so on are an inherent rights to the individual, then such should be explicitly stated in an Amendment to guarantee such rights.

    It was the same thing with allowing women the right to vote. There was no ability for the court to utilize 'due process' in that issue: the Document had to be amended to grant the right.

    You want the right granted, Amend the document. It isn't the Court's job to do so and invent rights that do not exist.

    Rights to healthcare do not exist within the framework of the Constitut
  22. Obi-Wan McCartney Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 17, 1999
    star 5
    Think of it this way, DM. The government has no right or power to declare the removal of testicular cancer illegal. They also have no right or power to make abortion illegal.
  23. beafet Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 12, 2001
    star 5
    My thinking has evolved.

    I have always been 100% against abortion. I view it as murder to destroy the life of an innocent baby.
    I disagreed with Liberal Republicans (example: Bush) who were against it except to save the mothers life. Who is the mother to decide whose life was more important? Then I evolved. My thinking became, if either just the mother would live or neither would live, then abortion may be okay.

    I have evolved further than that, though. I know think it is acceptable if the mothers life is in danger. I will explain why.

    The mother has a right to self-defense. If someone is attacking me, I will protect my self. If it comes down to that person or me living, I will try my hardest to make sure I am the one left standing.

    Same way with the baby.


    In other news, both Suzuki and DM are correct. Leave abortion laws up to the will of state legislatures (and thus the people) rather than the Supreme Court.

    As far as



    Does personal responsibility mean anything anymore? I would rather people pay child support fresh out of high school, and learn from their mistakes.



    [face_plain]


  24. Jediflyer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 5, 2001
    star 5
    Perhaps the one thing that has caused me to loosen up in my views and agree that humanity is not confered at conception is the thought experiment of a hospital on fire and the choice of rescuing the 4 year old child or the 10 embryos inside.

  25. Jansons_Funny_Twin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2002
    star 6
    I did not use the term "yokel" to describe gun owners, I used it to describe the yokels who think it is their god given right to own 100+ guns, including assault weapons.

    As a future gun owner (as soon as I'm living on my own), it would be odd to insult myself, don't you think?

    Wrong.

    You are wrong.

    It specifically states:
    My emphasis, of course.

    The arguement can be made that the Second Amendment is outdated, as militias are no longer necessary to the security. Instead, people like you and I have decided that we retain the right to bear arms, for reasons not explicitly found in the Constitution.

    Likewise, I have decided that women retain the right to have an abortion.

    But it does. You brought up that the Constitution does not explicitly allow for abortions, and I brought up that it doesn't have to.



    Squ33k!
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