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More on the pro-life position

Posted by Chance on May 16, 2006

I wrote this in a stream-of-consciousness manner, but I think it still properly spells out my thoughts….

Let me discuss my last posting a little bit. As you can guess, I am adamantly pro-life. I understand that not everyone is. However, some pro-choicers annoy me more than others.

First of all, why am I pro-life? Because, quite simply, I believe a fetus deserves the right to live. Many liberals and libertarians talk about a woman’s right to choose. What is ironic about this is that many times they supposedly use libertarian principles to support their right to choose. However, a libertarian argument is more convincing when an action only directly affects the person engaging in the action. Examples of this would be drug use or the act of prostitution. I am not saying I support the legaliziation of these things, I am saying that when someone states that it is “my body, my choice”, it makes a lot more sense when discussing these types of things. When it comes to abortion, this argument does not really work, because the abortion action ends the life of another being, other than the woman.

But this is where the crux of the argument is. It is not an issue of “civil liberties”. It is an issue of whether or not the fetus deserves the right to live. Either you are pro-life, believing that the fetus has a right to life that should be protected by the government, or you are pro-choice, believing that the fetus should not be protected. It is as simple as that.

I understand that some people do not believe the fetus is a human being. I have more compassion for those people’s arguments than someone who says abortion is especially heinous, yet supports abortion rights anyway. Jimmy Carter says that he does not think Jesus would support abortion, yet still supports the law of the land. I understand that some people simply do not think the fetus deserves the right to live, even though I hate that opinion and adamantly disagree. I hate even more those who go on and on about the horrors of abortion, yet, support it anyway.

I can’t quite get out what I am trying to say. I have many libertarian ideals, but I am not a Libertarian. I am limited government due to my belief in the corrupting nature of power, that the evil things people do when they are free is a better alternative than the evil committed by those in power. I will come out and say it. I think when it comes to debating abortion in the political arena, I think it must be done so on the stage of libertarian politics. Why do I think this? Because abortion is one of the few issues where a liberal will wax libertarian, talking about the right to control one’s own body, and the right to make a decision for themselves on whether abortion is okay or not. Conservatives do not meet this argument head on. I don’t think they really address the liberal’s argument. To a conservative, abortion is wrong, so, quite simply, it should be outlawed. A conservative thinks abortion should be outlawed, but they state the argument in the same manner that they think tattooing should be wrong. I am not saying conservatives see these as the same, but that they use the same argument. They need to say “look, we respect individual liberties of the woman, but we respect even more the right of a fetus to live”, and some do this to some extent.

Here is what I am trying to say. The liberals think that laws against abortion limit personal freedom, and that conservatives are trying to limit personal freedom by passing laws against abortion. I think we need to show that outlawing abortion is still consistent (in reality, a prerequisite for) a society of maximum individual liberty. One must show that individual liberty can still be respected while respecting the life of the fetus, and in fact, that respecting the life of the fetus is necessary in respecting individual liberty for all.

Let me say this again. Pro-lifers need to demonstrate that laws against abortion are compatible with a completely free society (in reality, they must go together, but we must crawl before walking).

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9 Responses to “More on the pro-life position”

  1. The Prophet said

    I hope you aren’t annoyed by me changing the direction of the post. I am pro-life as well. Pro-life all across the board.

    What is the Libertarian stance on the death penalty?

    I used to be for it but have recently been challenging my opinions.

    Who am I to say that a baby has the right to live and a murderer must have their life taken away?

    It’s just something that’s been rattling around in this little head of mine. Good Post.

  2. Chance said

    I’m actually not sure, I tried looking up stuff from the Cato Institute and the lp.org website and did not find much. Probably the most helpful is http://www.theadvocates.org/ruwart/questions_list.php?Category=44&PHPSESSID=b737854b5625f67219910e5182b96b16 , which says there is some disagreement.

    No problem changing the topic, in fact, I was going to post my opinions, but I think I’ll just do it in another post. In short though, I think morally, the state may have the right to put people to death, but from a practical standpoint, the rate of innocent convictions worries me.

  3. Lee said

    I believe philosophically, that if someone with premeditation intentionally takes somebody’s life, and ends that person’s existence here on earth forever, it is fair and just to deny earthly existence to the perpetrator as well.

    The devil may be in the details, but philosophically I’m cool with the death penalty.

    But… if I had to choose between my pro-life stance and my pro-death penalty stance, it wouldn’t even be close. Pro-life.

    If folks had to choose between their pro-choice stance and anti-death penalty stance, I think I know what many would choose as well.

  4. The Prophet said

    You both bring up great points.

    I think that my problem may be with the justice system in America today. And a lot of it has to do with whether a person can afford their own attorney or whether the state has to provide them with one.

  5. Chance said

    I was going to do an article on this, but my opinion on this is probably not well-informed enough.

    The question is, does the gov’t have the moral authority to enforce the death penatly. I think it probably does. However, as I said earlier, my problem is the rate of innocent convictions. And Josh, you bring up a good point about people affording a decent lawyer. I’ve heard arguments against the death penalty that says it is not enforced consistently. For Moussai, or however you spell his name, I think he deserved the death penalty, but at the same time, I like the thought of him dying with a whimper sitting in jail, as opposed to having a big publicized execution, which he would have loved.

  6. Chance said

    I agree with you Lee, since I don’t feel that strongly one way or the other on the death penalty, but even if I did, I would gladly eliminate the death penalty if it meant protecting fetuses.

  7. The Prophet said

    How about we round them all up and send them to a deserted island where they can just commit crimes against eachother? Oh wait… That’s Australia… my bad!

  8. Chance said

    Hmm, and Australia didn’t turn out that bad! Makes you wonder.

  9. Lee said

    I vote lunar colony.

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