A brief discussion of abortion

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ThisDinosaur
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by ThisDinosaur » Sat Feb 24, 2018 6:54 pm

@brute
I think the connection is between abortion, "family planning" and wealthy societies. Wealth is connected to smaller families started later in life. This gives the mother more time to learn a useful productive skill set and fewer helpless mouths to drain resources.

The urban-liberal connection has to do with denser populations leading to more human interactions leading to more rules. (If you hardly ever see other humans, you rarely find reasons to regulate their behavior.)
It's probably also important that urban people are more specialized and so more interdependent on each other.

BRUTE
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by BRUTE » Sat Feb 24, 2018 7:40 pm

that sounds extremely reasonable. brute agrees.
Last edited by BRUTE on Sat Feb 24, 2018 10:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Kriegsspiel
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by Kriegsspiel » Sat Feb 24, 2018 9:33 pm

ThisDinosaur wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 6:54 pm
@brute
I think the connection is between abortion, "family planning" and wealthy societies. Wealth is connected to smaller families started later in life. This gives the mother more time to learn a useful productive skill set and fewer helpless mouths to drain resources.
Nobody would argue with you that it's easier to build wealth when you're not supporting children. To take that argument ad absurdum, why not let people kill their children at any point while they are draining resources?

ThisDinosaur
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by ThisDinosaur » Sun Feb 25, 2018 12:25 am

Because children aren't fetuses.

radamfi
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by radamfi » Sun Feb 25, 2018 6:02 am

Kriegsspiel wrote:
Sat Feb 24, 2018 9:33 pm
Nobody would argue with you that it's easier to build wealth when you're not supporting children. To take that argument ad absurdum, why not let people kill their children at any point while they are draining resources?
There's no need to kill them. There are plenty of adopters (aka mugs) who will take them off your hands for free.

It could be argued that abstinence = abortion. If I choose not to have unprotected sex with a fertile woman who isn't pregnant then that could be seen as taking away a child's chance of a life.
Last edited by radamfi on Sun Feb 25, 2018 7:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

Jason
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by Jason » Sun Feb 25, 2018 7:05 am

Oh man, now I'm going to weep every time I stand over my shower drain.

7Wannabe5
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sun Feb 25, 2018 7:53 am

ThisDinosaur wrote:I think the connection is between abortion, "family planning" and wealthy societies. Wealth is connected to smaller families started later in life. This gives the mother more time to learn a useful productive skill set and fewer helpless mouths to drain resources.
Depends on the basis of the economy. In a warrior/herder culture, your sons who survive to adolescence are a form of wealth. In a subsistence agricultural culture, children start "earning their keep" at around age 6. My extremely wealthy friend grew up as one of 13 children on 100 acre farm. He had to walk the cows along the roadside to get "free" pasture and pick fruit from the orchard all through the harvest. His mother was almost constantly cooking and processing food. This was less than 3 generations ago. Children still worked in factories in the U.S. less than 100 years ago. Modern children are "pets" because robots. Takes a lot of resources and years to educate a human to the level that he can make or maintain a robot vs. a cow.
radamfi wrote:It could be argued that abstinence = abortion. If I choose not to have unprotected sex with a fertile woman who isn't pregnant then that could be seen as taking away a child's chance of a life.
Right. That's the point I was trying to make by calculating that I could have had up to 20 children if I had never made use of various forms of birth control. I actually did get a teeny bit of grief from my educated-by-the-nuns/Jesuits-in-the-1940s father when I chose to have my tubes clamped after my second child was born.

Obviously, this line of thought is kind of like applying Bayes' Theorem to becoming a human.

Jason
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by Jason » Sun Feb 25, 2018 9:17 am

Based on this line of argumentation, you could also equate societal mores and legal restrictions as being abortive in nature. Human beings are capable of reproduction and desirious of the reproductive act for years before being "allowed" to (at least that was the story given to me by all the girls I knew in my youth, well with the exception of the one I met in band camp who years late I later learned had a catastrophically mentally impaired brother which simultaneously made me feel somewhat awful about it but kind of explained the why of it). This was obviously not always the case. I don't claim to understand it - society superimposing norms over sexual behavior when biology informs otherwise. I imagine it's also singular to humans as I don't recall seeing any doggie mother going over to its doggie daughter at the doggie run and scolding her for her serial indiscretions.

ThisDinosaur
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by ThisDinosaur » Sun Feb 25, 2018 12:13 pm

@7Wb5
Exactly. Traditional morality works in rural communities where people are generalists and children are wealth. Kids are both employees and retirement fund, because they peak in productivity just as their parents productivity is declining.

In urban communities, everyone is a subspecialist, which requires a long education. You have to delay childbearing to compete with your classmates in a prolonged adolescence.

Since there's an ambiguity about whether or not the unborn are Persons, their is room for competition between systems of moral value. The most successful system in a given environment is selected for.

@Jason
One of the functions of culture is to counteract maladaptive biology. If humans take, say, 13-40 years to reproduce, we may not evolve as quickly as the environment changes. Evolving culture can adapt more quickly than our physiology. There is nothing natural about abstinence, adolescence, birth control, or abortion. But culture (including technology) allows us to compete with each other and the environment beyond what biology could do alone.

Jason
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by Jason » Sun Feb 25, 2018 12:24 pm

(@) Dinosaur

So we are aborting in order that we reduce the number of future Kim Kardashian's followers on social media? You know, thinking of the issue from that standpoint might make me actually switch sides.

PhilosopherSarah
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by PhilosopherSarah » Sun Feb 25, 2018 12:59 pm

Like most political debates, I do not even understand why the debate gets framed the way it does. I tune out of most political debates, since I think most of it is just mass entertainment/spectacle. I agree with earlier points that it would make sense to re-frame this political debate as a debate about birth control methods and birth control education. Public agreement on how to provide birth control education and resources would go a long way toward lowering the number of abortions -- and unwanted children -- per year.

The jaded part of me thinks that neither side cares that much about actually reducing abortion and unwanted children; rather, it is a political red herring that gives people an excuse to not engage in more meaningful and time-intensive forms of politics and governance. *Being a single-issue voter allows you to deceive yourself into believing you are actually an engaged citizen.* Millennials (like myself) get a lot of heat for not engaging in national politics, but in my lifetime I have started a nonprofit and have been very engaged in the communities I am part of -- far more than my parents ever were. I only have so much time and attention to devote, and national politics seems like a major waste of time, mere spectacle.

I think most people do view abortion as unethical; however, people are allowed (by law) to do all sorts of unethical things. I have always found it odd that "pro-life" people support the large-scale torture of nonhuman animals in laboratories and factory farms. I have always found it odd that "pro-choice" people also often support legalized prostitution, though they normally will not go so far as to support selling one's own organs. The first group supposes that only *human* life matters; the second group seem to miss something about the sacredness of life and the living body. (I am not religious, but I do not think you have to be religious to recover some sense of the 'sacred'.)

As for personal ethics: I personally would only get an abortion in extreme cases -- probably death of the child or of myself. As a result, I have practiced very cautious sex. Since I view sex as a serious, possibly reproductive act (and not just "fun", though of course it is fun), it is not hard for me be cautious about sex. I also do not take hormonal birth control, because it hurts my body. I have a lot of love for my own body and spirit, so I choose not to engage in casual sex. I am amazed by the amount of violence the modern woman allows against her own body -- hormonal birth control, abortion, abusive sexual partners. (A lot of this is a result of cultural conditioning, sadly.) What is missing from this debate about abortion is our own noxious attitudes about sexuality and the female body that undergird the entire thing. Our attitudes toward sexuality and the human body look a lot like those in Huxley's "Brave New World". This scares me more than anything.

George the original one
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by George the original one » Sun Feb 25, 2018 1:19 pm

ThisDinosaur wrote:
Sun Feb 25, 2018 12:13 pm
Traditional morality works in rural communities where people are generalists and children are wealth.
Aren't you ignoring the many societies where a dowry for specific sex of child is required, often leading to infanticide to avoid having to pay a dowry 13-20 years in the future?

Kriegsspiel
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by Kriegsspiel » Sun Feb 25, 2018 7:37 pm

ThisDinosaur wrote:
Sun Feb 25, 2018 12:25 am
Because children aren't fetuses.
They're more resource-draining though*.

*also applies to radamfi, since someone's gonna have to pay for the goddamn things.

GandK
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by GandK » Mon Feb 26, 2018 6:47 am

PhilosopherSarah wrote:
Sun Feb 25, 2018 12:59 pm
Like most political debates, I do not even understand why the debate gets framed the way it does. I tune out of most political debates, since I think most of it is just mass entertainment/spectacle.
You're right. It's sports fan mentality.

Re the difference with politics in being a Millennial, I'm not sure there is one. I've heard members of my generation (Xers) postulate that the reason politics has become sports-fan-ish is because Millennials, because it wasn't this way when we were kids. But we forget that several things were different in the 80s and 90s, the biggest being the near-absence of the Internet and social media. Almost every piece of information that reached the general public back then had been curated.

luxagraf
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by luxagraf » Mon Feb 26, 2018 9:56 am

GandK wrote:
Mon Feb 26, 2018 6:47 am
I've heard members of my generation (Xers) postulate that the reason politics has become sports-fan-ish is because Millennials, because it wasn't this way when we were kids. But we forget that several things were different in the 80s and 90s, the biggest being the near-absence of the Internet and social media. Almost every piece of information that reached the general public back then had been curated.
As a member of generation X (I think), I completely remember political debate being this way from the first time I can remember politics existing, which happens to be the election of Ronald Reagan, which was the first time I'd seen my dad cry.

But to me it always seemed like just sports-fan style entertainment. Back then it was the volvo and granola team vs the polo-shirted yacht owning team. Status indicators change, but teams are more or less the same today. Me I like baseball so I got my sport-fan entertainment kick from that until even that got too farcical for me.

ThisDinosaur
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by ThisDinosaur » Wed Feb 28, 2018 12:42 pm

George the original one wrote:
Sun Feb 25, 2018 1:19 pm
Aren't you ignoring the many societies where a dowry for specific sex of child is required, often leading to infanticide to avoid having to pay a dowry 13-20 years in the future?
I'm sure I'm ignoring a lot of the potentially infinite combinations of moral systems. Like those where infanticide of the disfigured is acceptable. Or where women and certain social classes are considered less human. Or ones where eating meat is murder.

ThisDinosaur
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by ThisDinosaur » Wed Feb 28, 2018 1:02 pm

Kriegsspiel wrote:
Sun Feb 25, 2018 7:37 pm
ThisDinosaur wrote:
Sun Feb 25, 2018 12:25 am
Because children aren't fetuses.
They're more resource-draining though*.

*also applies to radamfi, since someone's gonna have to pay for the goddamn things.
People see abortion as progressively more repugnant the closer it is to term, meaning, the more the fetus looks like a newborn. There is science to show that morality is judged by our emotions, not by logic. We judge something as immoral if it strikes us as "gross," or "unfair," and then we use logical reasoning to justify those judgements.
Since an embryo doesn't look human, and you never see a preterm fetus unless it's already dead, there is a wide range of opinions as to the morality of abortion. I take this to mean that all morality is subjective. Not necessarily meaningless, useless, or arbitrary. But subjective.

CoffeeSnob
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by CoffeeSnob » Fri Mar 09, 2018 9:48 pm

Not to reignite an inactive thread, but here’s my two cents...

Any “state” you apply to a fetus to justify killing it can also be applied to adults in specific scenarios (ie; an adult in a coma that will eventually be cured).

If there is any interest I can lay out a more logical defense of the above view, but that pretty much sums it up.

I personally feel like pro-lifers would be better off using logic than emotion... they actually have the upper hand but never seem to use it, falling back on excuses like religion and “it’s just wrong”.

enigmaT120
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by enigmaT120 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:48 pm

If the live adult in a coma is somehow a parasite in another person, then your analogy might work.

BRUTE
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Re: A brief discussion of abortion

Post by BRUTE » Sun Mar 11, 2018 7:31 pm

well, the comatose human adult would still consume resources.. is the "in" part that important?

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