April 26, 2007

So much for the dignity and value of every individual life

Jill of Feministe posts an anti-choicer's rant. The whole thing is deeply misogynistic for exactly the reasons she points out, but it also shades towards a self-defeating position:

What’s more precious, an innocent life of a child who has their entire life ahead of them or a grown adult who has had a fair opportunity to live their life and have whatever experiences they have been blessed to have?

(If you haven't read it yet, go check out the post to which this is a response. It's an extremely powerful anecdote.)

This is a rhetorical question. He's making a claim here, or at least trying to. He might be trying to claim just that he (and his wife) value the life of their future child over their own lives. But he's not. He's trying to make the blanket claim that the life of any (healthy?) foetus is always more valuable than the life of any adult. Which isn't just highly implausible; it's radically at odds with pretty much every contemporary account of ethics I can think of. Most relevantly, it's completely at odds with the `consistent pro-life', anti-abortion/anti-suicide/anti-death penalty position which bases itself on the notion that every single human being's life is intrinsically valuable.

Of course, we have no way of telling whether or not Anonymous endorses this `consistent pro-life' position. But it seems to me that it is the only one that even comes close to giving a coherent argument against the permissibility of abortion. And if it isn't Anonymous' position, how else is he going to justify himself? Explicit misogyny?

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