The choice kerfuffle in MA-05

(Wait a minute -- a talk radio host didn't get his facts right?? Well I never. - promoted by Charley on the MTA)

Curiouser and curiouser.  As you probably know if you’re following the MA-05 race, at a recent debate Jamie Eldridge questioned Barry Finegold about Finegold’s co-sponsorship of a bill that would have required a 24-hour waiting period before a woman could have an abortion.  Short version: Finegold later withdrew his support, and the MA affiliates of NARAL and Planned Parenthood are both satisfied that Finegold is reliably pro-choice.  (See more background at Lynne’s and Dick Howe’s places.)

That, however, hasn’t stopped EMILY’s List from sending out, and then refusing to retract, an email wondering “whether a Finegold victory in the fifth congressional district House race would further tilt Congress away from support for a woman’s right to choose.”  The Tsongas campaign has also refused to back down:

[Finegold's] campaign issued a statement yesterday that called the e-mail “patently false” and reiterated his support for abortion rights.

The campaign released a copy of a letter it sent to Tsongas calling on her to have EMILY’s List retract its e-mail and to issue a public apology.

Finegold also asked Tsongas to distance herself from a negative tactic “that shows voters their elected leaders care more about using falsehoods and distortions to score ‘political points’ than working together to solve the big problems we face as a nation.”

Katie Elbert, a Tsongas spokeswoman, said the Lowell Democrat has received Finegold’s letter but would not ask EMILY’s List to retract the e-mail or apologize.

“He’s asking that in an attempt to change the subject,” Elbert said. “Everything in the e-mail is what was reported this week.”

Asked if Tsongas believes the doubts raised about Finegold’s commitment to abortion rights, Elbert said, abortion rights should be on a par with other serious issues in the campaign.

“Niki believes that an issue as fundamental to a woman’s freedom as a woman’s right to choose warrants the same level of serious discussion,” Elbert said.

Ellen Malcolm, president of EMILY’s List, said Finegold’s gaffe should give pause to abortion rights supporters. Her group would not apologize.

“We’ve completely and accurately portrayed Finegold’s record,” Malcom said. “I don’t see why we should apologize for his mistake.”

This strikes me as pretty poor conduct on the parts both of EMILY’s list and of the Tsongas campaign.  Jamie Eldridge, whose questioning started the whole thing, thinks so too; here’s a statement he released today:

Vigorous debate and discussion about matters of public policy are not only fair game in a campaign but are in fact necessary for democracy to work. The candidates in this Democratic Primary have legitimate differences on the issues, and the voters deserve to know those differences.

When a campaign or supporters of one of the candidates knowingly misrepresents the stance of another candidate that is plainly wrong and destructive to the process.

At a recent debate I questioned Barry Finegold about his co-sponsorship of the “Woman’s Right to Know” bill. Within 24 hours he and his staff had clarified that he did not support the proposal and both Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts issued clear statements confirming that he is a pro-choice candidate.  I am satisfied and I believe anyone who had a question on this matter ought to have been satisfied.

I am disappointed to learn that an organization supporting Niki Tsongas sent a fundraising email across the country specifically designed to mislead its members and misrepresent the position of Barry Finegold.  I am even more disappointed the Tsongas campaign has refused to renounce the tactic and distance itself from the organization.

To Niki Tsongas I would respectfully suggest that this kind of action hurts campaigns and, when done to other Democrats, hurts our party.  Barry Finegold did the right thing and fixed a mistake.  It is time for Niki Tsongas to do the same thing.

Thank you,

Jamie Eldridge

Finegold made a mistake by co-sponsoring the waiting period bill.  He has acknowledged his mistake, and he has withdrawn his support.  It’s now time for Tsongas and EMILY’s List to back off.

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71 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. It's pure gold for Mr. Eldridge

    In one statement he gets to remind people that for a sliver of time Mr. Finegold demonstrated a sliver of anti-choice behavior, and that Ms. Tsongas is behaving in an underhanded and misrepresenting way.

    When life deals you a two-fer, you take it my friend.  Excellent recognition, Mr. Eldridge.  That you're right on the matter is pure gravy.

    • good point, stomv.

      Eldridge is clearly a smart campaigner.

      On the question of the EMILY's list email, though, I have to say that I agree - Finegold's support-then-backpeddling does raise legit concerns*, in my mind at least, about the solidity of his dedication to unassailable choice.  Whether Emily's List should have made their statement on behalf of the Tsongas campaign is another matter.  I guess it's one I don't care enough about to argue over, seeing as I'm not in the MA-05, so am an armchair observer only.

      *My personal opinion: Finegold has trouble being fully truth full and straightforward.  I got a glimpse of this when he introduced his desire to channel huge amounts of gov't $$ to a few MA firms to develop H fuel cells, but had nothing intelligent to say about where the energy would be coming from the manufacture the fuel for said cells.

      • agree with whom?

        clarification: "I have to say that I agree"...with Emily's List, that Finegold is less than reliable on choice.

        sorry for the opacity of my original post.

      • The issue here

        I think you can safely say Finegold had no idea what was in that bill, and neither did his staffers, or they wouldn't have signed it. Given the recent history and hubbub here about that very thing happening on another bill, it's easy to see how it happened, though it's not a good reflection on Finegold at all.

        I do genuinely get the sense he's prochoice. He took his name off that bill within 24 hours. I don't think it was because he originally supported it and then when pressure came about he changed his position.

        This was a serious gaffe by Finegold and he should be taken to task, but NOT for what EMILY's List says. I meant it on my blog when I said I cannot for the life of me picture Jamie putting his name on anything he didn't understand. It's especially dumb in the middle of a hot campaign season! LOL

      • RE H cells

        I think maybe he's not 100% up on the problems and issues with H fuel cells, so his not being able to answer may be a problem of his not having thought it through. STILL not a good thing, but at least an honest mistake.

        I prefer my candidate, a policy wonk to the T! And I don't mean Tsongas. ;)

        • no pass from me

          Finegold was proposing a major, major financial investment of taxpayer's money.  Anyone doing that has the responsibility to know more about the issue than I do.  Also, he posted his H-cell stuff here more than once.  The first time I asked about H-fuel supply and got a fudgy answer was bad enough.  But the second time?  Absolutely no excuse.  Sorry, but he gets no pass from me.

      • How can you tell when a poltician is lying?

        Their lips are moving. You folks have short memories. What about Mr. Barrios?

        When will you realize that these people will do and say anything to get elected and once elected will turn around and screw you and hope you don't remember when the next general comes up.

        Seems to me that Sen. Kerry was called to task on this right here a week or so ago.

        On top of that, what a lame arguement. We are drowning in red ink, schools are in trouble again, we are at war, we have illegal aliens up the kiester, and you're concerned about some ethically challenged MD shoving a stainless steel shank in some six month old neonates brain.

        America is a beautiful place---and what distinguishes us from Neaderthal's?

        • what distinguishes us from Neaderthal's?

          the same thing that distinguishes us from monarch butterflies: we're different species.

          • Actually

            We're a separate subspecies from Neanderthal man.

            Most anthropologists classify Neaderthal Man as homo sapiens neanderthalensis, as opposed to our own homo sapiens sapiens.  There is a strong possibility that a neanderthal and a human could procreate were they so inclined.

            sabutai   @   Tue 4 Dec 7:00 PM
            • that's debatable

              Many anthropologists do classify humans and Neanderthals as different species of Homo.  As the sequencing of Neanderthal DNA progresses, we should have a clearer picture of where the truth lies.  Until those results are available, it is not possible to say with certainty that we were subspecies.

      • Laurel, you're NOT $quot;an armchair observer only$quot;

        Who represents Massachusetts in Congress is important to all residents of the Bay State.

        We can all support the true Democrat in this race by contributing to Jamie's campaign. Lynne has a post somewhere left of here, and I've also got my own appeal on my website so please go and give a few bucks in the name of common sense and decency!

  2. Refreshing

    It's refreshing that good politics can be synonymous with being a good person and have good ideas.

    Jamie was right on all accounts - and I'm glad that it plays well politically, too.

  3. Seriously...

    Do people really believe that Finegold's staff put his name to this bill by mistake this year, when his name was attached a nearly identical bill last year? I have my doubts.

    It does seem like the Eldridge people played this well, though. They get to claim discovery of the name on the bill (while the big-money Tsongas campaign somehow missed it), get to pull a pretty big surprise on Finegold at a well-attended debate hosted by the primary newspaper in the district, and then get to wag a finger at Tsongas for taking it too far. Well done. The downside for Jamie, though, is that with people for whom choice is a top issue, this has to largely benefit Niki more than Jamie for no other reason than that she's a pro-choice woman.

    The interesting question is did Jamie ultimately do Niki a favor here by discovering this.

    • Well

      That MAY be true, though I still think Eldridge gets more out of this.  But it certainly WOULD have been true if Tsongas had found it and brought it up herself.

    • Jamie got the trifecta...

      As you pointed out above.

      I don't think this spat does Tsongas any good since her campaign has been based upon riding the recognition of her famous last name to victory. Drawing attention to her in anything but a flattering light can only serve to chip away at the large, but likely soft, lead she has in this race. This latest flap closes the door to any "above the fray" image she may want to portray. She's in the thick of it now.

      Finegold's credibility on choice is shot now, no matter his actual position. Jamie Eldridge comes out looking shiny.

    • pro-choice woman

      as a pro-choice woman, i can assure you that at least one of us isn't favoring Tsongas in this just because she is a woman.  pro-choice is pro-choice, and a firm stance from a man is completely equal to that of a woman.  if Eldridge and Tsongas were complete equivalents in every aspect except sex, then i would support Tsongas out of the principle of leveling the playing field.  but i don't really see her as his equal in this campaign.  Eldridge is clear and responsive, Tsongas is less of both.

  4. To my candidate - well played, sir!

    I've been busy and was unable to pay attention these last few days - thanks for the synopsis and the links!  Trifecta - hat trick - whatever you want to call it, that was well done.

  5. can somebody tell me

    why a 24 hour waiting period for an abortion is bad.  It is a harrowing choice no?  Why wouldn't one want to "sleep on it?"

    • Well, gosh, EaBo,

      don't you think that the people who are headed into the clinic have thought about it, slept on it, discussed it with whoever they needed to discuss it, and have already made the "harrowing choice"?  Why in the world would an alleged conservative back a government-mandated period of reflection?  Sounds to me like that's the government assuming that people are such idiots that they can't be trusted to make important decisions without the government telling them how to do it.  I am constantly amazed at so-called conservatives' enthusiasm for big government when it suits their ideological objectives.  It would be hilarious if it weren't so sad.

      • See below

        If you belive it is murder, which I do, you believe that government can be involved.

        • Hmmm...

          If it's murder, then why support a 24 hour waiting period at all? I mean, I know you don't like the idea of choice at all and would repeal that, but then why also support a 24 hour waiting period?

          Even if we accept your premis (which I do NOT) that abortion is murder, a 24 hour waiting period still makes no sense. It's like saying that somebody shooting me should be illegal, but if they're going to do it anyway, the government should make them think about it for 24 hours before they kill me.

          • He's just making

            shit up.  Apparently it doesn't matter one iota if what he says makes any sense as long as he can spew some syllables that sound like a defense of his indefensible and nonsensical position. 

    • I refer you to another...

      ... discussion on BMG.

    • Not crying $quot;Nanny State!$quot; now?

      If a waiting period isn't NANNY STATE, I don't know what is.

      • nannericious statery

        nanny state nanny state nanny state

        • Dude,

          he's so busted.

          • I have been consistent

            When something affects you and only you I believe in no government involvement in your decisions.  Gambling, drug use, driving without a seat belt etc... affect you and only you.

            It is my belief that abortion is murder, plain and simple.  It is not a religious thing for me as I don't go to church and don't consider myself religious.  It is a position that I have come to based for scientific reasons.  A baby is a seperate life that is being nurtured inside of another person.  So yes I guess i think the least you can do before murdering your child is to wait 24 hours. It's not nanny state, anything that can be done to save that life that is not yours should be done.  It is a very libertarian argument.

            • My further thoughts on the subject can be seen


            • Horse manure

              It is my belief that abortion is murder, plain and simple.  It is not a religious thing for me as I don't go to church and don't consider myself religious.  It is a position that I have come to based for scientific reasons.

              Science says nothing about whether something is or isn't murder.  Your argument is about as dumb as the Social Darwinists, who argued that Darwinian evolution implied that the rich were rich because they were "better" from an evolutionary standpoint because they were rich, and that the poor were "worse" from an evolutionary standpoint because they were poor, and suggested social policies based on that analysis.  What the Social Darwinists, and you, seem to misapprehend is that science seeks to describe what is, not what ought to be.

              Should some action be considered murder?  That is outside the realm of science.  So don't even try to go there.

              • science says that the fetus is a seperate being

                Raj - Science says that a fetus is a different being than the mother.  If you believe that science says that, then you can come to a scientific basis for calling the killing of that life murder.  It is not science that calls it murder, as murder is a societal construct.  It is science that says that it is a life.  And if it is a life and in our society we term the premeditated destruction of life murder, then abortion is murder, and my belief in that is supported by my scientific understanding. 

                • Why, thank you for the instruction...

                  ...and I'm sure that you can provided a citation to a peer-reviewed paper in a scientific journal that supports your contention that

                  Science says that a fetus is a different being than the mother.

                  Some of us actually understand science.  Some of you do not.

                • $quot;Science$quot; does not say anything of the sort.

                  And if it did, "Science" wouldn't use such vague and lazy terms as "different" and "being" in any meaningful way.

                  I never saw one person make up so much crap on one website in a long time.  You just pull this stuff out from between your buttocks because it suits your sensibilities.  Why don't you just admit it? 

            • So what do you think...

              ... death penalty for the removal of a cluster of a few hunderd mildly differentiated cells from a womb for the doctor and life in prison for the patient?

              • That's nice huh

                few hundred mildly differentiated cells

                You too were a "few hundred mildly differentiated cells" at one point. 

                It never ceases to amaze me that people that are so "progressive" on human rights fail to see why they should stop infanticide.

                • Enough....

                  ...with the hysterics.  A fetus is not an infant and an abortion is not infanticide.  Those terms have specific meanings that are not consistent with your use of them.  If you think aborting a collection of cells that has not grown to viability is killing then say so, but they are not an infant and it is not infanticide, period.

                  • OK

                    Where do you draw the line? What is viability.  With advances in modern Science infants are living with shorter gestation periods than ever before.  21 weeks has shown to be viable.  With advances in modern science is 18 weeks far behind.  What is the line?

                    • The line is....

                      ...drawn where the line is drawn.  Viability.  When that ceases to be a reasonable line then another line will be drawn or the line will be renamed.  A cluster of cells is clearly not even close to that line.  I am content to let the line stay just where it is since "viability" hasn't really changed but rather the technology has changed.  Technological advances do not mean that the state gets to invade the uterus.

                    • If...

                      ...21 or 18 weeks means "viable" then remove the fetus and--um--place it in an environment in which it can develop.

                      I hate to ask you, though, but who is going to pay for that environment?  And how much are they willing to pay?  It's not as though we have unlimited resourses.

                    • 21 weeks, 5 days is a good guess

                      That's the youngest premie who survived.  T'was a Canuck in 87 IIRC.

                • Come on Mr. $quot;its murder$quot;,...

                  ... answer my question.  What should the punishment be?

                  • If not done to save the life of the mother

                    than jail time for both Doctor and the woman having the abortion is warranted.

                    • Jail time on par...

                      ... with capital murder?  Say,... decades to life in jail?  What about the death penalty?  Do you support the death penalty in capital murder cases?  If so would you also support it in abortion cases?

                    • On holiday??...

                      ... or no comment?

                    • You are trying to goad me into the you're not really

                      pro-life trap, you're anti-woman.  If I'm for the death penalty how can I be pro-life right.  Where is my consistency.

                      I'll tell you what I told my Intro to Poli-Sci(the only poli-sci course this engieering major ever took) professor when she tried to pull the same on me in the spring of 1992.

                      The criminal that commits a crime punishable by capital punshment, knows that his crime will cause death.  He knows in advance of his committing that crime if he knows the laws of the state he is committing the crime in.  Therefore he, or she, has made a concious effort to do something which terminates his or her life.  There is guilt there.

                      Abortion kills another human being who is innocent.  The only crime he or she can be guilty of is being the spawn of a sperm and an egg (John Howard stay away from this thread, please) through intercourse.  The child has a right to not be killed based upon its innocence.  The person who commits the crime has given up that right to life due to the concious action he or she has take to give it up.

                      I have also gradually moved towards a position of concious decision for assisted suicide, if the patient is cogent enough to make the decision, that at a certain pain threshold he/she wants to die.

                      Now to your point, I would support whatever the individual states have determined is the punishment for murder in the first degeree for the doctor and accessory to murder for the woman having an abortion.  Unless it can be medically documented that the life of the mother is at risk. 

                    • Its only a trap...

                      ... because most people are inconsistant on the issue.  What you have put forth is mostly consistant (still wrong in my opinion, but not for reasons of reasoning, but for its premises). 

                      The one piece I find is probably still inconsistant is the fact that you only advocate an accessory charge for the Woman.  Without her concent there is no abortion.  She's not just covering up for others who commit the act.  She's an active participant in the act itself. 

                    • And that's where the Achilles heel

                      is most evident.  They would prefer to prosecute (and persecute) physicians but there's definitely an ick factor when it comes to 18-year-old females who, in a moment of weakness, felt pressured into getting laid one night.  They don't want their sisters and daughters to REALLY have to be charged and convicted of murder.  It's those bad and evil physicians.  Proxy.

                      It's hypocrisy through and through with nary a principled belief to be found.  You can dig and scratch this tender underbelly, and you'll find a man who is positively unwilling to send his daughter or his sister away for life for murder because she elected to have an abortion.  It's bullshit. 

                    • Its the difference between...

                      ... making it an illegal medical procedure and making it an illegal act, in and of itself.  If you think its murder then it doesn't make sense to treat it as just an illegal medical procedure,... so it doesn't make sense to treat the doctor and patient differently if they are both equally culpable for the act.  If it is a procedure, then yeah... the doctor is more culpable.  If its murder, then that position doesn't make sense. 

                      If your instincts for 'justice' lean toward punnishing the doctor, but not the patient, then the premises that form the underpinning for those instincts cannot include an assertion that it is murder.  Asserting that it is while holding those ethical instincts is indicative of a well hidden congnitive dissonance.

                    • Actually, no.

                      The woman/doctor thing is analogous to the solictor/hit man thing.  The woman is soliciting a hit.  She hires a physician to kill her baby in this warped mindset. 

                      The word "procedure" becomes euphemism for "hit." 

                      And this is when they run away. 

                    • If I solicit a hit...

                      ... all I have to do is make a deal.  I can then walk away and take absolutly no part in the act itself.  By definition if a potential abortion patient walks away there is no act.  Its not just her request that is necessecary, but her active participation.  There is a huge difference between a request to "kill my business partner" and the act of holding my business partner down while my hit man shoots him.  Even more of a difference if, for some reason, the hit man couldn't shoot unless I hold him down.

                    • There is often more

                      to a hit than walking away.  Often there is planning, a ruse, a schedule, etc., especially when the victim is close to the person ordering the hit, like a spouse.  The level of participation is not, in my view and in the eyes of the law, particularly relevant.  Indeed, if I'm not mistaken, the law treats the hitman and the procurer of the crime essentially the same.

                      So, yes, we could nitpick the picayune or subtle specifics of the analogy, but, in my view, these are distinctions without a difference:  the physician is hired and provided an unfettered opportunity by the mother to kill her baby.  Very few anti-choice proponents want to go down that road for obvious reasons, which is why their murder characterization is specious.

                    • Let me see if I understand...

                      You are asserting that people who want to think of abortion as murder are inconsistant because their instincts for punnishing a recipient of an abortion do not rise to the level of punnishment for solicitaion for murder.  Similar to my argument that people who want to think of abortion as murder are inconsistant because their instincts for punnishing a recipient of an abortion do not rise to the level of punnishment for murder itself.  This turns into a distinction without a difference because you would assert that the punnishment for solicitors and murderers should be the same.  Is my understanding right?  This discussion reminds me of a paper I wrote in college for a philosophy class regarding attempted vs. actual crimes. 

                    • Yes, that's essentially

                      correct.  I'm saying that their unwillingness to actually treat a woman who secures an abortion as a "murderess" belies the hypocrisy of their positions on this issue.  If a abortion is murder, then it's murder, no?  If a woman secures an abortion, i.e., the murder of her "unborn baby," then she is, for all intents and purposes, as guilty of murder as the woman who hires a hitman to kill her husband.  But I would venture that the vast majority of those touting abortion as murder are loath to actually treat the female who has secured the "murder" of her "baby" with the full force of law.  I am saying these folks are full of rhetoric that is both contradictory and hypocritical because when faced with analogous criminal situations, they back down in calling for the criminal punishment for murder to which they would hold anybody else. 

                      The woman who hires a hitman who successfull kills her husband?  Death penalty or life in prison for most of these folks.  The woman who hires a physician who successfully aborts or "murders" her "unborn baby"?  The death penalty or life in prison suddenly seem a bit, uh, extreme?  To these folks I say, yeah, I know, that's why you're full of shit on this murder thing. 

                      I firmly believe the crux of this issue for anti-choice folks is actually the control of women's sexuality and the unspoken notion that the punitive pregnancy should not be circumvented. 

                    • ???????

                      First off I think women are being manipulated by an abortion industry when they are going in for an abortion.  That's why I thought differing crimes were being committed.  Look in most states accessory to murder, i.e. hiring a hitman probably does carry close to the same penalties as murder. 

                      Second to the point below.

                      I firmly believe the crux of this issue for anti-choice folks is actually the control of women's sexuality and the unspoken notion that the punitive pregnancy should not be circumvented.

                      Let me spell it out for you. You let the penis in your vagina, you can get pregnant.  It ain't punitive, it's what the act is meant to produce.  If you can't deal with that, then you are not mature enough to be allowing the penis into your vagina.  Plain and simple.  There are causes and effects to actions.  The cause is sex, the effect is pregnancy.  You got a problem with that blame evolution.

                    • Thanks for illustrating my point

                      so succinctly here:

                      Let me spell it out for you. You let the penis in your vagina, you can get pregnant.  It ain't punitive, it's what the act is meant to produce.  If you can't deal with that, then you are not mature enough to be allowing the penis into your vagina.  Plain and simple.  There are causes and effects to actions.  The cause is sex, the effect is pregnancy.  You got a problem with that blame evolution.

                      In other words, if you're not strong enough or smart enough or principled enough or "moral" enough to control entry into your vagina, you have to deal with the consequences, and, in your view, that means carrying a pregnancy to term.  You have articulated exactly the mentality that views an unwanted pregnancy as a just punishment for allowing yourself to get pregnancy. 

                      Natural consequences are often circumvented when the result is undesireable.  If you eat too much fatty food, you'll gain weight.  Should there be a law that makes you remain obese?  You get a little drunk and take a tumble, something drunk people often do, and break a bone.  Should there be a law that makes you endure your broken bone because "evolution" has determined that humans become impaired by too much alcohol and often fall down, hurting themselves?  IOW, your notion that natural consequences are somehow to be endured is ridiculous.  There are innumerable examples of how we, as people, rectify unfavorable consequences to occurrences over which we both have and do not have control. 

                      Since we've determined that natural consequences in virtually all other aspects of human life are mutable and subject to remedy or intervention, then you have no recourse but to inject the fetus back into this argument as somehow making a difference--which leads us back, of course, to the ridiculous notion that abortion is murder, doesn't it?  Your arguments are specious and hypocrital.

                    • Fat cells are not human beings

                      You've laid out very interesting points, but they all fail to mention that you are not killing a human being when you choose those points.  You are through abortion.

                    • As I predicted, you

                      must inject (and have injected) the fetus back into this argument because you must concede (and have conceded) that natural consequences are not in any way privileged by their nature.

                      So, are you willing to treat women who get abortions as first-degree murderers?  If you are a death penalty supporter, are you willing to advocate the death penalty in much the same way you might if a mother had her toddler murdered?  If not, why not? 

                      You see, you can't have it both ways.  You can't claim the fetus is a human being and then not afford it equal treatment under the law.  In your view, then, if abortion is murdering a human being, aborting a fetus is tantamount to having the mother arrange the murder of her, say, 3-year-old child.

                      So what are you going to do to her?  Life in prison?  Lethal injection? 

                      Dooooooo tell.... 

                    • ??? indeed.

                      If you can't deal with that, then you are not mature enough to be allowing the penis into your vagina.  Plain and simple.

                      And yet, somehow, this same female is magically mature enough to bear and raise a child, all by herself, even.

                      You make absolutely no sense unless your wish is to punish a woman for acting as a sexual being.

                    • You should not be

                      "acting as a sexual being" if you cannot cope with the consequences of your actions.  Sorry but murder is not justified because the person having the murder performed is not mature enough to cope with the person being murdered.

                    • If murder is really what you....

                      ... care about then the sexual act shouldn't even come up in coversation as it isn't relevant.

                    • Yeah,

                      it's amazing how fast he took that bait, didn't he?

                    • And I suspect that my last

                      request for him here to reconcile his contradictory points of view will remain unanswered. 

                      As usual, when these folks are forced to confront the fact that their "moral" compass on this issue is based solely on the vagaries of their viscera and what "feels" right or wrong, they tend to disappear. 

                    • You're exactly right, and I will give you two words...

                      ...Pam Smart, who procured the services of her teenage lovers to kill her husband in New Hampshire.  Why should an abortion procurer be treated any different than an abortion provider?  Or, for that matter, the person who pays for the abortion?

                      The reason that the advocates of only making physicians culpable is that they know that they would not get anyone to vote for a law that makes the woman, the financier or the impregnator culpable.

            • Except....

              ...the state does not consider the act to be murder, does it?  After all, that is who gets to decide that legal question, the legislature, the executive and the judiciary, i.e. the state.  So there is no "murder" since murder is a legal concept.  What you are really saying is YOU think that abortion is killing.  So, when YOU think something is repugnant it is not a nanny state but when YOU don't it is.  There are any number of reasonable arguements that support the notion that people not wearing seat belts is very bad for everyone, not just that one individual but YOU don't see the harm or don't feel the harm is great enough to justify state action, so, "nanny state," "nanny state" but YOU are certain of the harm of abortion so "great protector state" instead.  You are walking a very mealy, hypocritical line here.  You either endorse state intervention into the private acts of citizens or you do not.  If YOU think abortion is killing don't get one, that is where your opinion ceases to be valid since it is not under any definition murder.  You are not espousing libertarianism here but rather Eaboism.  It is time to stop the ridiculous trend of every person who has a thought or belief inconsistent with their general ideology or the ideology of their party calling it "libertarian." 

              • Best line of this whole debate:

                You are not espousing libertarianism here but rather Eaboism.

                Fantastic, and absolutely right.  The notion that a government-imposed 24-hour "waiting period" is a "libertarian" idea is laughable on its face.  Sorry, EaBo, but you're going to have to do WAY better than that around here. 

            • Nonsense.

              Gambling, drug use, driving without a seat belt etc... affect you and only you.

              Ask non-gamblers in AC if gambling affects them.  Ask Mrs. Benoit if her husbands' drug use affected her [hint: you can't -- he seems to have gone on a drug-induced rage and murdered her].  Ask the medical industry [and the insurance industry] about how we all pay additional costs to deal with the added serious injuries of seatbelt-less accident victims.

              No man is an island, and many of our choices have significant impacts on others.

              And no, it's not a libertarian argument.  The two possible libertarian arguments are: 1.  The woman can do whatever she wants to her own body, and the fetus is part of her body. 2.  The woman can do whatever she wants to her own body, and the fetus is not part of her body and therefore can't act to intentionally harm that fetus.

              There's no other libertarian argument to make.  Just ask Ayn.  :rolleyes

              • I have chosen two. and have stated so.

                That is the libertarian argument.

                • If you choose 2

                  then mustn't you support this woman's right to not have to support another human being?  After all, that fetus has no right to the nourishment taken from the woman without consent.  If she's at the point where she wants an abortion, it's clearly no longer consent.

                  So, shouldn't she have the right to immediately prevent this other person from taking her nutrients?  I don't get to eat the food out of your fridge without permission...

              • I point you

                here where argument two was made.  Argument two presupposes that abortion is murder because it is not a part of the mother's body but it's own being. So my argument above still stands as a libertarian, albeit expanded version of your argument two.

                • Um...

                  Argument two presupposes that abortion is murder because it is not a part of the mother's body but it's own being.

                  ..if a fetus is its own being it could survive on its own, not requiring sustenance from another person.  Depending on the state of gestation, that's the case, but it isn't for all fetuses.

                  If you want to resolve this issue, sponsor research into decanters*.

                  *Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

        • Anxiously awaiting

          your support for elimating any distinction in law based on age.  Driving, voting, drinking, owning and using firearms, marriage, consent.

          Children require nannies.  Adults do not.

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Fri 24 Feb 6:58 PM