Abortion stats

June 20th, 2012 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Stats NZ has published the annual abortion stats. Looking at the graph the rate seems to have been dropping since 2007 and is now a 12 year low.

The abortion rate per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 has dropped to 3.6 – it was last this low in 1994.

In terms of pregnancies, 1.7% of pregnancies end in a termination. That is a pretty low rate.

62% of women who had an abortion, had never had one previously. 13% had two or more previously. This rate is growing – it was 10% a decade ago.

18.2% of abortions are on teenagers. 28.1% are to those aged over 30.

The age range with the highest abortion rate is 20 to 24 year olds and then 25 to 29 year olds.

45% of women having an abortion have no chidren. 55% have at least one child and 34% have at least two.

94.3% of pregnancies occur within 13 weeks.  55% are within 9 weeks.

They supply crude numbers of abortions by ethnicity, not not the rate by ethnicity. A quick contrast to the population states finds that Maori, Pacific and Asian ethnicities both have around double the abortion rate of Europeans. The Middle East, Latin American and African rate is around 1.5 times the European one only.

Finally we have the abortion rate (per 1,000 women 15 – 44) by country:

  1. Germany 7.3
  2. Netherland 8.7
  3. Finland 10.2
  4. Scotland 12.3
  5. Denmark 15.5
  6. Norway 16.2
  7. England 17.1
  8. France 17.2
  9. NZ 18.1
  10. US 19.6
  11. Sweden 20.9

It would be interesting to see a fuller set of international data.

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138 Responses to “Abortion stats”

  1. Luc Hansen (4,573 comments) says:

    An abortion is just another medical procedure, no more.

    But wait for males fixated on the reproductive organs of our women to flood this thread with evidence of their perversity.

    Say, why don’t we get stats on male vasectomies?

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  2. big bruv (13,935 comments) says:

    Given the number of kids born to feral parents I don’t think we have enough abortions in NZ.

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  3. Michael Mckee (1,091 comments) says:

    Luc you are such a plank!

    If it were just another medical procedure why do so many women suffer from depression as a result?

    It is perverse to dismiss a significant event in a man & woman’s life such as an abortion, as just another medical procedure.

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  4. dubya (236 comments) says:

    Luc,

    “Nationwide, 25 percent of married men and 18 percent of single men across all social and income groups have had the snip. Middle-aged men are the highest represented group, with a whopping 57 percent between 40 to 49 having been vasectomised.”

    -From

    Have 18-25% of women had an abortion?

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  5. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    Luc

    It’s a cornerstone of the Abrahamic religions that women should be kept in their place. One of the means to this end is to ensure that they are kept fully occupied with bearing children. They are thus unable to devote sufficient time & effort to the struggle to raise their status above the family goat.

    Heretical ideas such as control of their own fertility put patriarchal dominance at risk.

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  6. graham (2,335 comments) says:

    Luc – what Michael said.

    Leaving religious and ethical viewpoints out of it, the question has to be asked – why the hell did 15,863 abortions need to be performed? I would be interested to know the reasons.

    I can’t see many women choosing abortion as a realistic method of birth control (ie they have sex without using any protection, thinking, “If I get pregnant I’ll just have an abortion.”) So why are women having so many abortions? I assume that they are:

    a) unwanted pregnancies due to rape and other violence
    b) pregnancies where the woman and her partner just couldn’t be bothered to use birth control, couldn’t afford it, or just plain didn’t know about it.

    I *assume* that more people fall into category (b) than category (a), which leads to the question – why the hell aren’t these idiots learning? Do they not get taught about such things at home, by family, whanau, television, whatever?

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  7. MD (62 comments) says:

    I’m struggling to reconcile your second paragraph “The abortion rate per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 has dropped to 3.6″ with the country stats which show “the abortion rate (per 1,000 women 15 – 44) by country … NZ 18.1″. These appear to me to be identical measures but very different results.
    Luc, you’re correct, it’s just another medical procedure – as long as you aren’t the feotus.
    There isn’t even any question as to whether the feotus is alive. That’s clear it’s growing, moving, developing. The whole question revolves around when the feotus has reached a sufficient stage of development that we should accord it separate rights and recognition in law as a person, and from that how we handle a conflict between the rights of the mother and the rights of the feotus.
    You would think if there was a moral or ethical justification for your position on this you might be a little more willing to address the actual issues involved.

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  8. jonnobanks (148 comments) says:

    Michael Mckee, really? Depression? Have you any evidence to prove this? The evidence shows the opposite, that abortion does not lead to depression. But why listen to the evidence?

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100924122537.htm

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  9. Battier (10 comments) says:

    @Luc

    If you can convince yourself that it isn’t simply the prioritizing of a living woman’s desires (For whatever reason) over the desire of an unborn child to live, then of course it can be reduced to a medical procedure.

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  10. Scott Chris (6,155 comments) says:

    The abortion rate per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 has dropped to 3.6 – it was last this low in 1994.

    You appear to have misquoted the statistic David. According to the report:

    The general abortion rate was 17.3 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years, down from 18.1 per 1,000 in 2010.

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  11. Scott Chris (6,155 comments) says:

    An abortion is just another medical procedure, no more.

    No, it isn’t.

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  12. graham (2,335 comments) says:

    jonnobanks:

    The report you quote is talking about one specific group – teenagers.

    It does not say that “abortion does not lead to depression”. It actually says, “teenagers who have abortions are no more likely to become depressed or have low self-esteem than their peers whose pregnancies do not end in abortion.” There is a difference.

    They used data from 289 respondents. I’m no statistician, but that doesn’t seem a huge base to me.

    And the lead author says “”We know most teen pregnancies are not wanted pregnancies and an unwanted pregnancy can be very stressful.” What would be interesting to know, is how many of those respondents in total reported depression.

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  13. graham (2,335 comments) says:

    Also, jonnobanks, there are other studies that would disagree with that study.

    There’s a study published in the Journal of Pregnancy and involving 374 women who had abortions, which found women having high rates of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms for women having both early and late abortions.

    Approximately 52 percent of the early abortion group and 67 percent of the late term abortion group met the American Psychological Association’s criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms (PTSD).

    And a 2010 study put out by researchers at the University of Manitoba in Canada found women who have had abortions are about four times more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol as those who carried their pregnancy to term. The authors confirmed a link between abortion and the substance abuse issues.

    The study appeared in the April issue of the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry and it showed women having abortions were 3.8 times more likely to have substance abuse disorders.

    So … yeah … forgive me if I don’t exactly seem persuaded by the study you report.

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  14. Mark (1,488 comments) says:

    nasska WTF has Abrahamic religion got to do with killing children? Personally I am simply relieved and grateful that my mother chose not to kill me off before I got the chance to breathe. I cant see what religion has to do with in frankly. It seems to me that a child whether pre or post natal deserves our protection from being killed simply because they are an inconvenience.

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  15. Fletch (6,410 comments) says:

    Leaving religious and ethical viewpoints out of it, the question has to be asked – why the hell did 15,863 abortions need to be performed? I would be interested to know the reasons.

    Not sure about here, but in the U.S (2008 stats) the main reason, 98%, is convenience.

    This report reviews available statistics regarding reasons given for obtaining abortions in the United States, including surveys by the Alan Guttmacher Institute and data from seven state health/statistics agencies that report relevant statistics (Arizona, Florida, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Utah). The official data imply that AGI claims regarding “hard case” abortions are inflated by roughly a factor of three. Actual percentage of U.S. abortions in “hard cases” are estimated as follows: in cases of rape or incest, 0.3%; in cases of risk to maternal health or life, 1%; and in cases of fetal abnormality, 0.5%. About 98% of abortions in the United States are elective, including socio-economic reasons or for birth control. This includes perhaps 30% for primarily economic reasons.

    You can see the actual tables HERE

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  16. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    Mark

    The comment could be seen as a preemptive strike given that the opposition to abortion( & in many cases, use of contraception) is driven by the religious fruitloops who haunt these forums. Unless a woman holds a personal faith, religion should not be used to influence any decision that she makes over the use of her body.

    I’m naturally happy that my mother saw fit to carry me full term….I am even happier that my parents were able to provide me with a decent upbringing. I’m also aware that if her decision had been to abort I wouldn’t have known about it one way or the other.

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  17. graham (2,335 comments) says:

    Fletch at 10:30 am:

    Wow. I find that quite shocking. I wouldn’t have thought the first word to cross a woman’s mind when you mention “abortion” was “Convenience”.

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  18. graham (2,335 comments) says:

    nasska: Speaking as one of those religious fruitloops :), I don’t think you necessarily have to be religious in order to have a negative opinion about abortion, do you?

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  19. simonway (387 comments) says:

    pregnancies where the woman and her partner just couldn’t be bothered to use birth control, couldn’t afford it, or just plain didn’t know about it.

    If that were really the case, first-time abortions wouldn’t make up such a large proportion. Not that I care either way – that a pregnancy is unwanted for whatever reason is all that anybody need to know in order to approve of the procedure.

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  20. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    graham

    Certainly it is not mandatory……but from my observation it helps!

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  21. RRM (9,933 comments) says:

    Graham – speaking as one of those atheist fruit loops – you are correct.

    Wife & I don’t oppose abortions being done, but we would never choose to have one ourselves.

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  22. graham (2,335 comments) says:

    nasska, note also that different fruitloops often think wildly differently about issues. I know of some Christians, for example, who say abortion is an absolute no-no, never mind the circumstances. I disagree with that. If a woman has been raped and abused, and is pregnant as a result, I’m certainly not going to stand and preach to her about not getting an abortion.

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  23. cha (4,036 comments) says:

    A reminder about where the nutters want to return to.

    http://archive.org/details/when_abortion_was_illegal

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  24. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    graham

    In that case I’ll happily concede that the mantle of fruitloopery does not suit you. :)

    I also concede that I don’t consider that abortion should be touted as an alternative to contraception. My stance is that the decision, be it for or be it against, should be up to the individual & not restricted by those who do not walk in her shoes.

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  25. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    To say that an abortion is just a medical procedure (like a root canal) is like saying that the death penalty is just a legal system function (like a parking ticket).

    It is a medical procedure that is a direct and lethal intervention against a biologically alive human being. You can rationalise it , as DPF and others do, by saying that the convenience of the mother outweighs the life of the unborn while the latter is dependent on the former. That contention is pretty flimsy and generally isn’t sustained under logical scrutiny (unless you are willing to accept the conclusions of Peter Singer – as very few decent people do).

    Nevertheless, that is a far cry from justifying abortion on the basis of it just being a “medical procedure”.

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  26. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    I am a Christian and I think abortion is wrong. One marvels at the callous and bureaucratic way it is portrayed in the official statistics. Like there is a baby there. If you don’t believe me then look at a scan. Believe your own eyes. There are little hands and little feet. After 6 weeks there is a beating heart. It is just a fact that I would have thought even the unbeliever could see.

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  27. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    “My stance is that the decision, be it for or be it against, should be up to the individual & not restricted by those who do not walk in her shoes.”

    This kind of comment misses the point entirely. After all – who is in the position to decide for the unborn? Who walks in their shoes? A third party is involved and it is the consideration we afford to him that is the basis of the discussion to be had.

    As long as pro-choicers prefer to debate strawmen, the sides will be at cross purposes and the pro-life side will continue to gain strength with millennials.

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  28. RRM (9,933 comments) says:

    Believe your own eyes. There are little hands and little feet. After 6 weeks there is a beating heart. It is just a fact that I would have thought even the unbeliever could see.

    When there are no eyes, ears, or mouth, and minimal brain function, you can ask yourself whether there is really a person there who would notice if (s)he went away again. A lot of people don’t though…

    (Yes, beyond a certain stage they appear to be self-aware enough that they try to push the needle away, and that is heartbreaking to see I agree… )

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  29. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    (Yes, beyond a certain stage they appear to be self-aware enough that they try to push the needle away, and that is heartbreaking to see I agree… )

    Indeed-so why do we put up with it? All those human lives snuffed out. Just one seems bad enough. But 15,000. Like that is a whole town. I honestly cannot understand why we allow this.

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  30. dubya (236 comments) says:

    “Just one seems bad enough. But 15,000. Like that is a whole town.”

    If that town is Flaxmere, then I’m all for it.

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  31. kowtow (8,524 comments) says:

    .

    nasska is a religious fruitloop himself.his obsession with it puts him into that category,fruitloop.And luc,well pfft.

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  32. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    “Like that is a whole town. I honestly cannot understand why we allow this”

    It is conjectured by some that it will be as incomprehensible to future generations as chattel slavery is to us today.

    Certainly, the history resonates – slave owners in the old South commonly invoked the separation of Church and State in their justification for opposing the abolition or forced manumission of slavery proposed by various Christian organisations.

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  33. graham (2,335 comments) says:

    nasska at 10:53 am:

    Oooh, I’d be careful about that! Maybe you should meet me before deciding I’m not a fruitloop …

    As I say, if a woman has been raped and abused, and is pregnant as a result, I don’t see how I can tell her not to get an abortion. But for the people who fall into the categories of “it’s convenient”, “we couldn’t be bothered using birth control”, etc. – in my opinion, abortion is wrong. The end.

    I don’t preach to people, and I’m not going to pass judgement on anybody. But that’s my opinion. Other than a very few cases, such as rape, abortion is wrong.

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  34. simonway (387 comments) says:

    who is in the position to decide for the unborn?

    The person whose body they’re occupying without consent, obviously. Would you mind if I took up residence inside of you?

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  35. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Graham @ 11.22:

    So why not execute the rapist? It seems odd to execute the unborn child under some cold utiltarian calculus.

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  36. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    kowtow

    …”nasska is a religious fruitloop himself.his obsession with it puts him into that category,fruitloop.”….

    It is your privilege to define my beliefs or the lack of them as you see fit. I see myself more as a moderating influence on those who feel that their belief in the supernatural gives them a mandate to dictate the lives of others.

    Vive la difference.

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  37. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    “The person whose body they’re occupying without consent, obviously. Would you mind if I took up residence inside of you?”

    Well – it’s not as if the unborn child asked to be conceived in the course of the natural function of conjugal relations, so it’s hard to classify it as ‘occupying’.

    The unborn child suffers the permanent disability of death under the abortion. The mother, in most instances, suffers the heavy but temporary disability of pregnancy (after which she is free to give up the child). Where does a civilised society we draw the line? That’s the debate to be had.

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  38. graham (2,335 comments) says:

    Cato: However you choose to punish the rapist, ultimately doesn’t matter. He’s not the one who has to either:

    (a) live with a child and all that entails for the rest of his life; or
    (b) make what may be a horrible decision to have an abortion

    The woman is the victim here. She is the one who may (depending on her perspective) look at that child every day and see the face of her rapist.

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  39. simonway (387 comments) says:

    So why not execute the rapist?

    The woman’s not pregnant with the rapist, she’s pregnant with the fetus.

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  40. Ryan Sproull (7,205 comments) says:

    Would you mind if I took up residence inside of you?

    Odd Kiwiblog pick-up lines.

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  41. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    I am a Christian and I think abortion is wrong

    Are these two facts supposed to be related?

    The deity in the Christian belief system is very big on murdering children, remember.

    It actually makes more sense for someone to say “I am not a Christian, so I think killing children is wrong.”

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  42. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    @ Luc

    It’s worth pointing out that abortion in NZ is the only ‘medical procedure’ where genuine informed consent doesn’t occur.
    It’s also the only ‘medical procedure’ where a doctor ‘does harm’, rather than ‘does no harm’.
    And it’s the only ‘medical procedure’ that a number of general medical professionals do NOT want anything to do with.

    “But wait for males fixated on the reproductive organs of our women to flood this thread with evidence of their perversity”

    Typical pro-choice bully words of someone too scared to look at the facts and legitimately debate the issue.

    As Michael McKee said. You’re a plank.

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  43. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    “The woman is the victim here. She is the one who may (depending on her perspective) look at that child every day and see the face of her rapist.”

    She is a victim, but using joined up thinking should lead you to acknowledge that abortion creates a further victim.

    Think about it like this: if the termination of an unborn child for de facto reasons of convenience (the undisputed grounds for most of common terminations) is unjust, then what is the injustice? It’s the same reason as why other forms of homicide are wrong. That is to say, it is the unjust denial of possible future experiences to an innocent human being.

    When a rape is committed, a great evil has been perpetrated. But homicide is worse than rape. So, unless you have a strong belief that the ends justify the means, you are advocating fighting an evil with a greater evil.

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  44. Northland Wahine (667 comments) says:

    Getting an abortion in New Zealand does not involve going down to your chemist to get an aspirin. There’s the initial pregnancy test, then another appointment and a discussion with your GP. Appointment booked at the clinic to see a counsellor, and if needed, another. Then the termination procedure date.

    This could take a matter of weeks. I am sure there are women who have used abortion as a means of contraception. I have no doubt they are the minority. To some, probably many, it is NOT just another medical procedure. They understand what they are doing and it haunts them. Ask a women who has had one, and ask them how old the child would be now. Bet she could tell you. Chances are she could also tell you the date of the termination.

    It’s sad that any child has to be aborted. What’s even sad that most abortions that take place are necessary.

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  45. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    “I am a Christian and I think abortion is wrong” Are these two facts supposed to be related?The deity in the Christian belief system is very big on murdering children, remember. It actually makes more sense for someone to say “I am not a Christian, so I think killing children is wrong.”

    Wat Dabney-not going to debate with you sorry. Unless you can come up with some reasonable response just not going to take the bait.

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  46. kowtow (8,524 comments) says:

    simonway
    consent?
    granted when 2 people decided to copulate. consequences.

    Question to the secularist pro abortionists who believe in individual choice and personal responsibility.

    Why should the taxpayer have to pick up the tab for the majority of these abortions which are clearly lifestyle choices and a matter of inconvenience ?

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  47. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    “It’s sad that any child has to be aborted. What’s even sad that most abortions that take place are necessary.”

    How is that so? We all agree it is very sad. The unborn child or fetus trying to push the needle away is heartbreaking. Most of us would agree on that.

    Why is it so necessary? What’s wrong with adoption for example? At least that child would have a chance.

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  48. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    “It’s sad that any child has to be aborted. What’s even sad that most abortions that take place are necessary.”

    That, I think, is more frustrating than the explicit arguments for the pro-abortion argument. It is a complete abdication of thought on the matter. Yes, it would be nice if nobody was ever put in the position of having an unwanted pregnancy. Guess what, though? The biological function of mating is to produce offspring – so as long as people engage in mating, we are going to have to address the question of abortion.

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  49. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Scott,

    You’ll recall that it was you, not me, who raised the subject of Christianity in relation to children.

    If you are unable to defend the mass-child-murdering antics of your belief system’s deity then I suggest you don’t mention it in future. Otherwise, be prepared to be called on it, just as you’d be challenged if you said “I’m a Nazi and therefore a good person.”

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  50. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Scott,

    I wouldn’t advise responding to Wat Dabney. He is clearly of a type with no real interest in the history of religion. It would be just as futile as a math teacher trying to explain calculus to someone who has yet to master multiplication.

    I keep coming back to the Terry Eagleton quote about Dawkins: “Imagine someone holding forth on biology whose only knowledge of the subject is the Book of British Birds…”

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  51. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    No Wat, I think you will find it was the previous commentators who used words such as “religious fruit loops”who started this.
    So I needed to identify myself as a hopefully non-fruit loop religious person.

    Again your comments are so provocative and unreasonable they are just not worth answering. The “mass child murdering antics of your belief systems deity” is just such an awful comment that one is awestruck by your audacity.

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  52. graham (2,335 comments) says:

    Cato at 11:42 am: I believe there should be no abortion, at all.

    However … I don’t like putting myself in the position of preaching to people, or passing judgement. What I’m saying is, I’m not about to stand in front of a woman that has just been raped, is pregnant as a result, and had her whole world turned upside down, and tell her, “Don’t you dare have an abortion, you murderer.”

    Whether you consider it murder or not is a very contentious point. I honestly don’t know at exactly what point I would consider that a foetus is a human. Fortunately, I’ve never had to consider the issues that deeply. Is it murder if you have an abortion at 1 week? Honestly, I don’t know what to think.

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  53. Northland Wahine (667 comments) says:

    Wasn’t aware I had abdicated anything Cato. For every woman who has to personally address the question abortion, as you put it, you will find a different reason or reasons as to why she believed terminating her child’s life, is her final option.

    And Scott, and what happens if this chid isn’t adopted? Because that does happen. What happens if a woman already has too many children that she feels she can cope with mentally but physically and is too afraid to tell her husband for religious reasons. The rape scenario is just another. Infidelity another… Answering your questions will create more questions.

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  54. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    I agree with most of what you say Wahine. I don’t believe there will ever be a zero abortion rate, nor should there be. There are some horrible genetic abnormalities out there and you wouldn’t wish children with these on your worst enemy. I do believe you can go through some spiritual process and decide it is better for the child not to be born when future healthy children could be born. However I also believe there are a lot of “live and let live’, types out there right up until their foetus tests positive for Downs. Maybe there should be more of a discussion around how much of an abnormality Downs is. Especially considering that by the time most of us make a half century we’re getting pretty wrecked from various ‘ills’. I have a functional friend with Downs.
    I do believe there are some women who have been sold down the river by a generation of political feminists. We deserve full disclosure and to know what a foetus looks like after 8 weeks so for the sake of 2 people the best decision can be made. It doesn’t bother me particularly before brain function commences and I’m also not into having an opinion on rapeseed.

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  55. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Graham – did I advocate calling such a woman a murderer? It’s certainly a form of homicide (a class of actions that includes murder but also other killings).

    What’s at issue is whether we should approve of an action that we would otherwise hold to be unethical on the basis of the fact that it was caused by another unethical action, but now involves the life of an innocent third party.

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  56. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Scott,

    The “mass child murdering antics of your belief systems deity” is just such an awful comment that one is awestruck by your audacity.

    I think you mean “honesty.”

    What happened to all the children in Sodom when it was destroyed by Yahweh?

    Answer: All murdered.

    What happened to all the firstborn of Egypt – including those still young?

    Answer: All murdered.

    What happened to all the children when Yahweh magically flooded the entire planet?

    Answer: All murdered.

    So please spare us your fake outrage and instead face up to the barbaric realities of your hideous creed.

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  57. Northland Wahine (667 comments) says:

    Monique… I agree regarding knowing what a fetus looks like at 8 weeks. Every consideration should be given towards making this decision. I also use to be of the mindset…no womb, no opinion. That too has changed.

    I just don’t like the idea that a woman should be made to feel guilty by anyone, regarding a decision that is already a difficult one.

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  58. kowtow (8,524 comments) says:

    what dumbney

    According to your lot the bible is sky fairy myth. Why are you referencing it? I’ll start quoting from Grimms fucken fairy tales to back my arguments if you like.

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  59. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    kowtow

    Finally a breakthrough…..you are on the point of conceding that one fairy tale is as good as another.

    Keep trying. You’re nearly there!

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  60. bringbackdemocracy (427 comments) says:

    Your suggestion that only 1.7% pregnancies end in an abortion is nonsense.
    In the year ended Dec 2011 there were 15,863 abortions.
    In the year ended Sept 2011 there were 62,260 live births.
    Do the maths, that means one in five children conceived, have their lives terminated by an abortion.

    What the stats show is that both the number of live births and the number of abortions is falling.
    Also that one in five children are considered expendable.

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  61. kowtow (8,524 comments) says:

    nassie

    Not by a long shot!

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  62. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    Grimms fairy tales that’s the one where witches eat children
    Does that mean we can sell aborted foetuses for food

    The natives used to like their man meat.Used foetuses could be good for a renascence in cultural food
    num num a bit like veal

    Abortion gay rights cue the f undies and the god made us myths

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  63. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    kowtow,

    I’ll start quoting from Grimms fucken fairy tales to back my arguments if you like.

    Are you going to claim Grimms’ support for your moral positions when in fact it completely contradicts them?

    Are you going to selectively quote Grimms, leaving out the mass of atrocities and cruelty?

    And on the basis of such gross misrepresentations and distortions, are you going to call yourself a Grimmian, wallow in the feeling of piety it bestows, and condemn others from your position of moral superiority?

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  64. iMP (2,387 comments) says:

    Human Rights for unborn women and gays!

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  65. kowtow (8,524 comments) says:

    Renaissance,interesting term,Catholic Italy.

    Brought about by Catholics fleeing the fall of Constantinople.We owe them so much!

    You are the fundies with your hate filled literal interpretation of the bible that you claim is a myth.
    I don’t know anyone ,other than whack jobs who take that stance.

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  66. Harriet (4,990 comments) says:

    A woman is not just un-pregnant when she has an abortion, she also has to deal personaly with a dead child – forever.

    Just because something is legal does not make it moral, reasonable or right.And we now have an entire generation which seems incapable of basic reasoning or moralising – as slavery was of course at one time fully legal.And just like aborted unborn babies – black unborn babies didn’t get a say in their outcome either!

    Pangs of conscience here girls ?

    It’s a free country – people should be allowed to do whatever they want, including killing their own babies, so thanks for sorting us out on this girls.

    And now that we have the moral and intellectual go-ahead for all this, let’s just go and kill some more. After all, it is your choice.

    SOooooooooo by the way, pick me up a few more slaves when your on your way home from getting an abortion, will ya?

    And before you start name-calling in response to this – what did you name your dead baby ?

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  67. Harriet (4,990 comments) says:

    Nasska #

    “….It’s a cornerstone of the Abrahamic religions that women should be kept in their place. One of the means to this end is to ensure that they are kept fully occupied with bearing children….”

    SOooooooo then – you are now saying that nature, human nature, is a religion ?

    If that is the case, then that means God exists ! Or arn’t women human ?

    Thanks for sorting that out for mankind.

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  68. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    Nope – still not rising to the bait Wat. I think the subject of abortion is so important that we need to debate that. Many people with differing religious views can agree that the sight of the unborn child or fetus trying to get away from the needle is heartbreaking. So let’s concentrate on abortion today.

    I am not interested in debating the events in Egypt of 1500 BC. Or the flood. Interesting as those events are. Let’s concentrate on the matter in hand shall we?

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  69. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    kowtow,

    your hate filled literal interpretation of the bible

    Since when did quoting the Bible become equivalent to a “hate filled literal interpretation”?

    Are you trying to tell us that, in the Bible, the deity called Yahweh doesn’t murder all the children in Sodom; doesn’t murder all of Egypt’s firstborn; doesn’t murder virtually every child on the planet when it magically floods the place?

    Surely the real question here is why are you so keen to bowdlerise and cherry-pick the Bible; to discard the 90% you happen to disagree with. Isn’t that the most arrogant and sacriligious thing imaginable for a believer?

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  70. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    We are talking about abortion in NZ today Wat. Let’s stay on track shall we?

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  71. Northland Wahine (667 comments) says:

    Harriet… Why would anyone start calling you names? Young have a strong opinion ad you’re entitled to it. Go you.

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  72. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Scott,

    It’s fine to debate the matter in hand, until one effectively starts the sentence with “As a Christian…” In which case it is essential to be clear about exactly what the Bible says, and it is typically very far removed from the comforting Sunday School version. In Grimms, children are killed and eaten. In the Bible they are just killed.

    So.

    In the paradox of the heap, grains of sand are removed one at a time. At what point does there cease to be a heap?
    Similarly with pregnancy. One day after sex a woman may be pregnant but she is not carrying a baby, just a smear of cells.

    If there is to be an abortion, better to do it before the grains become a heap.

    And on that Confucian note…

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  73. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    Harriet

    …”you are now saying that nature, human nature, is a religion ?”…..

    No….what I’ve always said is that it is a quirk of man that he cannot comprehend eternity or infinity but he can invent gods by the barrow full. Once a god has been invented another human quirk comes in to play…..the simple belief has to be backed by an infrastructure involving priests, churches, temples, writings, popes & so on. Eventually the way a simple goatherd explained to himself something that he was not equipped to understand becomes a juggernaut of rules, canons & laws backed by vast wealth, tradition & even military force.

    Abrahamic religions started amongst tribal Middle Eastern societies where women were considered property & treated like shit. Change has varied from the semi equality enjoyed by most Christian women to the barbaric cruelty experienced by Muslim females.

    Whether women are human or not is a question that should be put to the heads of the various religions & sects. You might not be happy with the answers.

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  74. CraigM (694 comments) says:

    RIP 15,863 innocent souls
    taken through the choice of others
    by those who swore an oath to do no harm

    Our nation was ‘defined’ by the sacrifice of many who died to protect our freedoms as they understood them at the time.
    One of those freedoms must be freedom of choice, or for those who believe, exercising our God given free-will.

    Whichever way you look at it, I don’t believe that freedom of choice, or free-will, was ever intended to be used as an excuse to kill innocents.

    Just because we can, it doesn’t mean we should. How did society get so sick, that the killing of the most innocent of us, our babies, is accepted by so many as normal.

    So go ahead and celebrate that only 15,863 BABIES were killed by their Mothers last year. After all, it’s lower than previous years. Hoofuckinray

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  75. Northland Wahine (667 comments) says:

    Apologies for the typos. Blogging from the phone is not a good idea.

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  76. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    RIP 15,863 innocent souls

    You see what I mean, Scott?

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  77. Michael Mckee (1,091 comments) says:

    This is an abstract from the good old state of China, hardly a prolife supporter looking at both induced abortions and spontaneous ones.
    http://www.psikofarmakoloji.org/pdf/22_1_8.pdf

    This from the APA in the USA
    http://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/features/amp-64-9-863.pdf
    Abortion as a Traumatic Experience is an interesting sub heading for the “just another medical procedure crowd”.

    Personally I think women who have abortions need all the help they can get, just as those who carry their children to full term do.

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  78. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    God given free-will.
    fuckin f undies
    According to the fairy tale (the bible not Grimms)
    We made use of free will and got kicked out of paradise for the crime of stealing Knowledge
    love it how the god squad change the meanings and their history to suit the occasion
    Free will is the woman’s not the churches property

    Butt out of others lives abortion is not compulsory yet
    maybe it should be for all unchristian Christians

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  79. ISeeRed (236 comments) says:

    The Christian god endorses and orders abortion and infanticide:

    Hosea 9:11-16 Hosea prays for God’s intervention. “Ephraim shall bring forth his children to the murderer. Give them, 0 Lord: what wilt thou give? Give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts. . .Ephraim is smitten, their root is dried up, they shall bear no fruit: yea though they bring forth, yet will I slay even the beloved fruit of their womb.” Hosea desires that the people of Ephraim can no longer have children. God obeys by making all their unborn children miscarry. What’s terminating a pregnancy unnaturally called again?

    Hosea 13:16 God promises to dash to pieces the infants of Samaria and the “their women with child shall be ripped up”.

    2 Kings 15:16 God allows the pregnant women of Tappuah (aka Tiphsah) to be “ripped open”.

    1 Samuel 15:3 God commands the death of helpless “suckling” infants.

    Psalms 135:8 & 136:10 Here this god is praised for slaughtering little babies.

    Psalms 137:9 Here this god commands infants should be “dashed upon the rocks”.

    Judges 11:30-40 Jephthah killed his young daughter by burning her alive as a burnt sacrifice to the Lord for he commanded it.

    2 Kings 6:28-29 “And the king said unto her, What aileth thee? And she answered, This woman said unto me, Give thy son, that we may eat him today, and we will eat my son tomorrow. So we boiled my son, and did eat him: and I said unto her on the next day, Give thy son, that we may eat him: and she hath hid her son.”

    Too easy.

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  80. Lucia Maria (2,473 comments) says:

    Oh for goodness, sakes!

    Murder is when human beings unjustly kill other human beings.

    God, the Creator of all that is, decides when it is time for every single one of us to die. That’s not murder. When a person decides to take any one else’s life before his allotted time, that is murder.

    Abortion is murder, miscarriage is not.

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  81. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Oh dear.

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  82. Lucia Maria (2,473 comments) says:

    Yeah, well, that’s what you get when you turn an abortion conversation into a theological discussion.

    With Bible quotes and all. Who is using the Bible quotes? Not the Christians.

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  83. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Are you saying that abortion isn’t a theological matter?

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  84. Weihana (4,557 comments) says:

    Lucia Maria,


    God, the Creator of all that is, decides when it is time for every single one of us to die.

    You have evidence of this? :)

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  85. Weihana (4,557 comments) says:

    Lucia Maria,


    When a person decides to take any one else’s life before his allotted time…

    Isn’t that a contradiction of your first statement that God decides when everyone will die?

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  86. Weihana (4,557 comments) says:

    How does one know whether or not a killer is simply the instrument of God, carrying out his wishes and marking the end of one’s “allotted time”?

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  87. Lucia Maria (2,473 comments) says:

    Weihana,

    No, it’s not a contradiction. God knows how long everyone will live and how long He wants everyone to live and what will be salvaged from what He wants and what happens.

    The best thing to assume is that if you want to kill someone is that it’s a good idea not to, even if God can bring some good out of it. If you do it of your own free will, it’s still murder.

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  88. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    2 Northland Wahine. Yeah I think a women should never be judged or blamed or held to account which is effectively what Lucia Maria is saying. I believe that if a woman ‘chooses’ abortion then it can be the case that society has done the choosing for her. I know countless cases where someone in their early 20’s has had an abortion because they are “too young”, to have a child.When I was in my early 20’s it was a common procedure because it was deemed “early cell division”.
    Then I had my oldest child’s first scan at eight weeks, I couldn’t believe they would see much. I didn’t even feel ‘pregnant’. I saw him kicking and waving his “arm bud thingy’s”. Loved it. Still. had he or I been real sick, he might not have made it through the pregnancy. And that’s life.
    Every day above ground is a good day and while we’re here we should be exercising our wisdom for the greater good without falling into the trap of being a sanctimonious prick.

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  89. Lucia Maria (2,473 comments) says:

    Wat,

    Are you saying that abortion isn’t a theological matter?

    I used to quite easily argue against abortion before I believed in anything much at all. Theology just adds more, that’s all. But without it, we’ve got more than enough to prove it’s wrong and that it’s murder.

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  90. Weihana (4,557 comments) says:

    Lucia Maria,

    If God knows how long we will live then how can we have free will? How can we choose to kill if God knew beforehand that we were going to kill? If someone’s action can be determined beforehand then the action is deterministic, i.e. there’s no free will.

    As to assuming it’s not a good idea to kill.. what if God commands it? What if he speaks to us and tells us to kill? And how do we know whether or not such commands have been given?

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  91. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    Nah actually it’s not murder. It’s abortion. You may equate it with murder but it has never been accorded legal status as such.

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  92. leftyliberal (651 comments) says:

    Thanks DPF – been fun to watch the show – I have no doubt it’ll continue well into the evening.

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  93. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Lucia,

    Clearly a smear of cells is not the same thing as a person. So whatever else you might call it, it is not murder to flush them.

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  94. Lucia Maria (2,473 comments) says:

    Weihana,

    I don’t quite have time to answer your question completely right now, but have answered something similar (on God commanding people to kill) on my blog yesterday. Specifically my last several comments to Psycho Milt on this thread: Christian Culture and the Baptised Modernist.

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  95. simonway (387 comments) says:

    We deserve full disclosure and to know what a foetus looks like after 8 weeks so for the sake of 2 people the best decision can be made.

    You mean, “pregnant women deserve to be guilt-tripped and emotionally manipulated into making the decision you’d prefer them to make”.

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  96. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    “Clearly a smear of cells is not the same thing as a person. So whatever else you might call it, it is not murder to flush them”.

    That’s where we disagree on this issue. The abortion counsellor will say yes this is just “a smear of cells” as you so charmingly put it. However if one looks at a scan then at six weeks we have a beating heart. And I know, having seen my own daughter at the 10 to 12 week mark, we have a body with little arms and legs and little hands and little feet. So there is a baby in there.

    That’s what we seem to be missing. It is good that abortion is coming down. But 15,000 young lives in 2011! Like I think that’s terrible. Why do we put up with this?

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  97. simonway (387 comments) says:

    However if one looks at a scan then at six weeks we have a beating heart. And I know, having seen my own daughter at the 10 to 12 week mark, we have a body with little arms and legs and little hands and little feet.

    Terri Schiavo had hands and feet and a beating heart.

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  98. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Scott,

    It’s a matter of timing. You can’t deny that the process starts as just a smear of cells.

    And at six weeks the foetus is still at the stage where is looks pretty much like that of any mammal.

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  99. chiz (1,145 comments) says:

    Michael McKee:This from the APA in the USA
    http://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/features/amp-64-9-863.pdf
    Abortion as a Traumatic Experience is an interesting sub heading for the “just another medical procedure crowd”.

    Did you actually read that pdf?:

    The most rigorous studies indicated
    that within the United States, the relative risk of mental
    health problems among adult women who have a single,
    legal, first-trimester abortion of an unwanted pregnancy is
    no greater than the risk among women who deliver an
    unwanted pregnancy. Evidence did not support the claim
    that observed associations between abortion and mental
    health problems are caused by abortion per se as opposed
    to other preexisting and co-occurring risk factors. Most
    adult women who terminate a pregnancy do not experience
    mental health problems.

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  100. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    I have so much more respect for pro-choicers who are able to say: “yes, it is obvious that abortion is a fatal intervention against a human life – but I think it is justified.”

    There’s no reasonable doubt that, as a matter of biology, that a human life is created by the fusion of gametes. 23 chromosomes merge with 23 others to create a new and individual entity from which nothing more is added or substracted. This entity, which is genetically a human being, grows and develops and, absent a fatal intervention, will die as an old man or an old woman.

    If you’re cognizant of the foregoing and you don’t accept that it’s a human life, then it must be because you’re defining human life by reference to some flexible standard of utility or usefulness – something which is ultimately quite dangerous.

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  101. Alan Wilkinson (1,878 comments) says:

    I would be surprised if the incidence was equally likely across the range of age 15-44. Therefore the international comparisons are weak without adjustment for demographic distribution differences.

    My dog had a beating heart too when we had to put her to sleep today, as well as bright eyes and a love of treats. Sadly her body had succumbed to old age.

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  102. Scott (1,805 comments) says:

    “Terri Schiavo had hands and feet and a beating heart”.

    I totally agree. From what I understand that case was a difficult one where the husband wanted the feeding tube removed and Terri’s parents wanted it to stay. If I remember rightly Terri’s parents would take on the job of feeding their daughter? It did seem a harsh decision by the courts to remove life-support against the wishes of her parents. However I accept it was a difficult case. Whether it has direct application to this issue of abortion is not particularly clear to me?

    “It’s a matter of timing. You can’t deny that the process starts as just a smear of cells.And at six weeks the foetus is still at the stage where is looks pretty much like that of any mammal.”

    I would agree that the process starts with a small group of cells. I’m not sure that I would accept your point about the fetus looking like pretty much any other mammal. That’s probably another point we would disagree on. A theist believes that human life is created in the image of God and so therefore is different from say a cow or a pig.

    Also if I remember correctly there has been a lot of junk science around this issue. That the human embryo does look quite different. If I remember rightly there was a German scientist who fudged the drawings to make the embryos of different species look the same? But I cannot recall the details sorry.

    (Just looked up on Wikipedia –Ernst Haeckel was the fellow. The article there comments on the controversy regarding the accuracy of the drawings of the embryos.)

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  103. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Cato,

    A smear of cells is a potential person. It is not a person.

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  104. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    As long as you realise that applying that rhetoric to fused gametes (as opposed to separate sperm and eggs) is based on a medieval understanding of biology.

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  105. RRM (9,933 comments) says:

    Abortion thread hits 100 comments – there’s a surprise! :-)

    (Keywords: homosexual, abortion, beneficiary)

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  106. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Cato,

    That reply was completely meaningless.

    If you wish to push the religious argument that an invisible deity sprinkles its magical pixie dust at the moment of ejaculation to create something essentially human then do that. But if you are sticking with biology you are left with the fact that the content of a just-fertilised egg is not a person.

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  107. chiz (1,145 comments) says:

    Cato:There’s no reasonable doubt that, as a matter of biology, that a human life is created by the fusion of gametes. 23 chromosomes merge with 23 others to create a new and individual entity from which nothing more is added or subtracted. This entity, which is genetically a human being, grows and develops and, absent a fatal intervention, will die as an old man or an old woman.

    No. When gametes fuse to produce a zygote that zygote does not always develop into a human being. It may die. It may split into two (or more) in the case of twinning. It is also possible for two embryos to fuse together to produce a single individual.

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  108. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Based on what?

    Why must you insist that everybody who disagrees with you make an explicitly religious argument? Why so insistent on avoiding a purely ethical argument?

    The question is – what is a human being? What is a person? If you’re wedded to the ideas of, say, 400 AD, then it is completely reasonable to argue that a distinct human doesn’t emerge until late in the pregnancy.

    In 2012, however, the burden is on you to explain why a separate entity that is genetically human and completely unique, that is growing (and so isn’t dead) isn’t a human being.

    To date, you’ve never addressed that – and it seems that its because you prefer to dispense tired cliches about organised religion.

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  109. Monique Watson (1,062 comments) says:

    @Simonway.

    For me, if it’s on screen and it’s kicking then it is more than likely more human than mere cell division. So, yes it would expect the observer to sway towards preservation of the embryo/foetus. However, if it’s a choice between me and the foetus then guess who I award the greater right to life.
    The foetus gets it and I get to live another day. This is in line with that most basic of laws describing human nature, that of self preservation at all costs.
    What I don’t believe in is pandering to anyone in case it makes them feel baaad and not disclosing the gravitas around such a decision.
    What a dickhead link. As If. And even if that were to happen you imply that women would not stand up and say fuck off in droves.

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  110. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Chiz at 5.00 pm – irrelevant to the fact that, biologically speaking, a zygote is human being in a very early stage of development. It is an entity that is living and one that has fully human DNA. It is at any rate something quite distinct from a collection of individual cells. I suppose it is reasonable to draw the line some days or even weeks afterwards, for example, once the folding of the embryonic disc has started – but it seems pretty arbitrary to do so.

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  111. RRM (9,933 comments) says:

    Year to December 2011: 61,400 live births, 15683 abortions.

    That’s 20% of all pregnancies. I was surprised to see the rate anywhere near as high as that.

    http://www.statistics.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/population/births/BirthsAndDeaths_HOTPYeDec11.aspx
    http://www.statistics.govt.nz/browse_for_stats/health/abortion/AbortionStatistics_HOTPYeDec11.aspx

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  112. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Put it this way – a zygote is indisputably an individual living being of some description, rather than a smear of cells. Does anyone seriously dispute that? It also has a fully human genetic code distinct from that of the mother and father. Does anyone seriously dispute that?

    So it’s something. It’s not the functional equivalent chopped off toenail or lock of hair as the clearly antediluvian wat dabney keeps insensitively saying.

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  113. chiz (1,145 comments) says:

    A zygote is not a human being in an early stage of development, that’s the point. It may be the start of two humans, or the start of none, or it may not be viable and self-abort after a few days. You cannot attach any notion of personhood to an embryo. Yet many people oppose abortion because they mistakenly think that life (i.e. personhood) starts at conception.

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  114. chiz (1,145 comments) says:

    Cato:a zygote is indisputably an individual living being of some description, rather than a smear of cells

    So a hydatiform mole is a being rather than a mass of cells?

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  115. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    Predictably the argument has been spun into the area where pro life supporters feel most comfortable….that of when the sperm & egg omelette gains human status. Largely ignored are the circumstance of conception & the right of the woman to control over her own body, not to mention the health & viability of the baby should the pregnancy carry on uninterrupted.

    Perhaps it is time to consider the fate & care of the spastics & mongoloids carried full term in less enlightened times.

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  116. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Human life does begin at conception. Personhood is a philosophical notion, which is a separate question. It is not unreasonable to grant personhood to every living human being from the point of conception – indeed it is consistent to do so from a philosophical perspective. I agree thay chimerism seems difficult conceptually at first, but the fact is that whether or not fertilized eggs fuse together naturally – each of them are living human beings. Neither becomes less alive or less human.

    If you only bestow personhood on, say, the self-awareness – can I ask if your living will states that your body may be destroyed at any time you are declared not to be self-aware, even if it is likely that you will become self-aware in the future?

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  117. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    I assume you mean a molar pregnancy? That’s a tricky bio-ethical question but it’s likely that it was a person, but is no longer.

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  118. chiz (1,145 comments) says:

    Personhood may be a philosophical notion but it is the one that is relevant to the abortion debate. Most antiabortion people would presumably have no objection to abortion to, say, a hydatiform mole. If you believe that life begins at conception then do you believe a mole to be alive? There is a technical biochemical sense in which it is alive but it isn’t what most people really mean when they talk about life.

    If you grant personhood from conception then how do you handle twins or chimeras?

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  119. eszett (2,417 comments) says:

    Human life does begin at conception.

    Your whole argument hinges on this very one sentence. Take it away and everything else collapses as it has no basis whatsoever.
    Therefore you need to cling to it, no matter how absurd, illogical and baseless it is.

    There is no one single moment where human life begins. It’s somewhere between conception and birth. This whole “begins at conception” is nothing but a fantasy, a conveniently made-up fictional point to suit your argument.

    You very well understand the concept when it comes to defining an adult. There is nothing special about the 18th birthday, you wouldn’t call someone a day before the 18th a child and a day after an adult. It’s an arbitrary, agreed upon deadline in a process.

    Your argument is akin to saying a new born is an adult and needs to be treated as such.

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  120. Battier (10 comments) says:

    @wat dabney

    So what arbitrary point are you choosing to recognize the transition from “non human smear of cells” to “live person”. Once a baby has left their mother physically? The arbitrary 20 weeks of gestation after which abortion is mostly illegal? When its hands sprout fingers you can recognize?

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  121. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    But the examples you cite are irrelevant. The fact that a human entity merges or duplicates doesn’t mean that the resulting entity or entities are any less of a human being.

    And as to your repeated bringing up of molar pregnancies – are you referring to complete or partial molar pregnancies? I mean, if it’s a complete molar pregnancy then there isn’t a child, after all. If it’s a partial molar pregnancy then the death is usually caused by nature, not human intervention – and where it’s not the double-effect principle comes into play.

    And to keep denying a human life is involved is absurd given that a zygote is a) indisputably a living being and b) genetically human. Pointing that out isn’t absurd, illogical or baseless.

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  122. Northland Wahine (667 comments) says:

    Nasska @ 5.31.

    That’s not entirely true that all prolifers think that. If a woman has no idea she is pregnant until she is say, 3 months, is the fetus any less a fetus pre her knowledge that she was carrying? Couples trying to have a child will grieve any miscarriage no matter how long the gestation. Realizes this is slightly off topic, but depending on a womans circumstances, she can justify, if only to herself when the fetus becomes a baby that she is carrying.

    And like Monique… My health or a fetus at the early stages of gestation, the fetus will lose. Will I grieve? The answer is yes. I reserve the right to chastise, punish, beat myself over this decision. Or not.

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  123. eszett (2,417 comments) says:

    So what arbitrary point are you choosing to recognize the transition from “non human smear of cells” to “live person”.

    Welcome to the problem, Battier.

    Yet you admit that choosing conception as the defining point is also completely arbitrary and has no basis in logic or reason.
    It is merely convenient because it is easily definable and measurable, which is not a compelling reason at all to choose it.

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  124. eszett (2,417 comments) says:

    And to keep denying a human life is involved is absurd given that a zygote is a) indisputably a living being and b) genetically human. Pointing that out isn’t absurd, illogical or baseless.

    Being alive and being genetically human makes you a human being? That would apply to nearly every single cell in your body.
    By that definition you could give your liver personhood.

    Is that not absurd, illogical or baseless enough for you?

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  125. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    Northland Wahine

    For what it’s worth I hold that the entire decision should be left to a fully informed woman…..I stated as much in my 10.32am & 10.53am comments. I realise that in most case their is a bond between a woman & the potential new life she is carrying & I find it incredibly condescending to think that a woman would make other than a carefully considered choice.

    Everybody else should butt out.

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  126. Northland Wahine (667 comments) says:

    I saw those posts nasska… And yes… It’s about being fully informed. Any woman who makes this decision also needs to be aware of possible physical, mental and emotional consequences. And be prepared to deal with them.

    And once that informed decision has been reached… Yep, everyone else… Butt out

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  127. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    They can not butt out nasska the f undies have to push their morals on us all.
    Never mind that G#D did not live by them

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  128. nasska (11,587 comments) says:

    Griff

    I reckon that they have an absolute right to their beliefs & a similar right to practise them.

    What I disagree totally upon is their presumption to the right to speak for the rest of us.

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  129. Scott Chris (6,155 comments) says:

    Yet you admit that choosing conception as the defining point is also completely arbitrary and has no basis in logic or reason.

    No less arbitrary than choosing the moment of birth as the beginning of personhood.

    [chiz]If you grant personhood from conception then how do you handle twins or chimeras?

    So presumably, following your line of reasoning, once the certainty of the existence of a single viable fetus has been established, personhood is then bestowed upon the being? (yes, I know your answer, that a person is defined by what it isn’t)

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  130. eszett (2,417 comments) says:

    No less arbitrary than choosing the moment of birth as the beginning of personhood.

    Of course. Any point you choose will be arbitrary, simply because there is no one single point where personhood occurs. It’s a continuous process.

    However defining it at the very beginning of the process has less way merit than at the end of the process.

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  131. Michael Mckee (1,091 comments) says:

    eszett (1,246) Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 5:47 pm
    Your argument is akin to saying a new born is an adult and needs to be treated as such.

    No mater what your philosophical position is, the reality is if you leave it alone and feed it (the mother) properly, at the end of 9mnths or so out pops a baby. It’s only by interfering with it does that change.

    Now, that baby is in need of care and protection for some say 18 yrs, some say more, some less, again the reality is it still needs our care and protection.

    Why not while it is in the womb?

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  132. Michael Mckee (1,091 comments) says:

    chiz (434) Says:
    June 20th, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    yep I’ve read them both and many more, I try and stay away from both side’s so called websites on the issue.
    That’s why I posted those.
    They both recognise that it isn’t cut and dried and not just another simple little medical procedure, which is what I object to with LUC.

    It’s not and not just to the fetus/baby/child/mother/father but also to grandparents/sisters/brothers etc.
    It is life and death for some.

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  133. eszett (2,417 comments) says:

    No mater what your philosophical position is, the reality is if you leave it alone and feed it (the mother) properly, at the end of 9mnths or so out pops a baby. It’s only by interfering with it does that change

    Not quite correct, Michael. About a third of all pregnancies end in a miscarriage one way or the other. There is a huge number of things that have to happen after conception to actually become a baby.

    Conception is but one step.

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  134. Harriet (4,990 comments) says:

    Eszett#

    “…There is no one single moment where human life begins. It’s somewhere between conception and birth. This whole “begins at conception” is nothing but a fantasy, a conveniently made-up fictional point to suit your argument…”

    That’s crap !

    You can’t START the process DURING pregnancy !

    Idiot.

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  135. Battier (10 comments) says:

    @Eszett

    Miscarriages are irrelevant to this discussion

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  136. chiz (1,145 comments) says:

    cato:And to keep denying a human life is involved is absurd given that a zygote is a) indisputably a living being and b) genetically human. Pointing that out isn’t absurd, illogical or baseless.

    You don’t seem to be paying attention. The question isn’t whether a zygote is alive or not, it is whether or not it constitutes a person. Since a zygote sometimes develops into a mass of cells that has no chance whatsoever of developing into a person it seems silly to attach personhood to a zygote, and that personhood must attach some time later. Your claim that of a mole that “it was a person, but is no longer” would strike most people as bizarre.

    The fact that a human entity merges or duplicates doesn’t mean that the resulting entity or entities are any less of a human being.

    That isn’t the point. Again you are confusing life with personhood. The point about twinning and chimerism is that you can’t describe an embryo as a person because it might in fact develop into two, or only a half. Suppose for example that the Government passed a law stating that once a zygote became an embryo it was legally recognized as a person, the kind of law that some antiabortion advocates want. Would twins therefore constitute one legal person?

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  137. chiz (1,145 comments) says:

    Scott Chris:So presumably, following your line of reasoning, once the certainty of the existence of a single viable fetus has been established, personhood is then bestowed upon the being?

    Personhood requires a single viable fetus, plus other factors (the degree to which the nervous system has developed for example). Like others, I don’t think it magically appears at a specific time, instead that occurs in degrees. As eszett pointed out, its a continuous process.

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  138. mini (1 comment) says:

    Abortion is a very bad procedure and should never be taken, if so you are just a selfish bitch every life is precious and if it is bad at the start you will life on to love your child 4 who they are. :)

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