The abortion debate inevitably travels in the same issue-avoiding circles. I was recently on an ABC panel debating the courts blocking Florida’s 24-hour wait period for a woman to get an abortion after receiving counseling, providing time for her to weigh more information into her life-and-death decision.
Naturally enough, it devolved into a debate on abortion — as it always should. I was debating a pro-choice feminist and board member of the ACLU. And a friend. Our debate was feisty but civil — an important goal.
However, the debate continued on Facebook, where it became decidedly less civil. One of the great canards thrown at me all the time is that I cannot have an opinion on this because I am a man. This is so easily cut down and burned that there is never a response to my point. It’s just reiterated that I can’t. I’m male.
What this and so much of the rest of abortion debate dodgeball suggest is that rational thought, morals and, more than ever, science, make the pro-choice position completely indefensible. There is simply no way to defend a woman’s “right” to end the life of another human being for any reason she chooses, at any point in the pregnancy she chooses.
Canards flying everywhere
Hence we have the dodgeball arguments that this is a “choice”; that this is about “reproductive health rights”; that this is about “health care”; that a man cannot have an opinion.
No, the first and central issue is whether that which is in the womb is a human being with rights inherent as a human being. Most people actually see that is the case, at least after a month or two. Science gives us evidence with brain waves, heartbeats and in-womb pictures.
So when I make these points, they are really never refuted head-on. This is demonstrated with painful clarity in the Facebook debate that followed. It’s linked below.
Here is a sampling from Facebook, from both men and women:
“I watched it last night. I still don’t understand why men think they have a say in women’s health.”
“The next segment should be on prostate health. I’m looking forward to (a woman) expressing her opinion on that.”
“A man’s opinion on a women’s health and body issue is just not on equal footing with (a woman’s), no matter how eloquent and reasonable it may be.”
“What if women were up in arms because of men’s selfish refusal to get vasectomies?? What if we tried to FORCE men to get vasectomies for the safety of women?”
“Another man chimes in, lol.”
FYI, the response that men cannot have an opinion on this is astonishingly faulty thinking. Morals are not gender-dependent. Right and wrong is right and wrong. There is not a different set of rights and wrongs based on gender. It is not morally acceptable for a woman to steal from a man because she is a woman, because *stealing* is wrong. It is not morally acceptable for a man to kill a woman, or another man, because *murder* is wrong. Stealing and murder are wrong independent of which gender is doing it and which gender is considering its morality. In the same way, killing an unborn baby is either morally acceptable or not morally acceptable, independent of which gender is doing it or which gender is considering its morality.
Let’s play abortion dodgeball!
All of this is dodgeball. You see how all of the accusations avoid the central point. I’m convinced most know deep down this is the willful taking of an innocent human life. They know that is not defensible on any moral grounds.
So they play dodge the issue.
- I throw out “Is it a human life in the womb?” They dodge left with “It’s a woman’s choice!”
- I throw again “Is it a human life in the womb?” They dodge right with “It’s about reproductive rights!”
- I throw again “Is it a human life in the womb?” They duck with “It’s about healthcare!”
- I throw again “Is it a human life in the womb?” They spin sideways with “Pro-lifers don’t care about the life outside the womb!”
- I throw again “Is it a human life in the womb?” They slide down with “If pro-lifers really cared about abortions, they would support better sex education!”
- I throw again “Is it a human life in the womb?” They spin sideways with “You’re a man!”
I throw one last time “Is it a human life in the womb?” And one may finally answer with “No! It’s a clump of cells. Nothing more than a tumor.”
Finally. Someone admits to being a science-denier. But at least we can get on to debate the core issue with all the scientific evidence that it is indeed a measurable human being within weeks. We measure the death of a human with heartbeat and brainwaves. The baby has both of those in six to eight weeks.
That’s it. Dodge the ball of what abortion really is.
None of these remotely approach a defense for a state policy of allowing the willful killing of a human being with inherent rights by another human being for any reason, or no reason.
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EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on The Revolutionary Act.