Monday, September 22, 2008

Barack Obama's opposition to Born Alive Act

I've tried keeping my religious opinion on this race out of the blog since some of my friends, specifically Patrick, are quick to rightly point out that the topic of abortion is a red herring during elections. I am who I am though, and after taking in the discussions of Obama's view on the Born Alive Act, I have to comment on this. The MSM has been very quick to batter Sarah over the head because of her religious views and views on abortion. I would like to think that I support abortion in cases of incest, but then I hear things like that poor woman in Austria that has six kids by her crazy father and was kept locked up in a basement for years. I have to wonder, does she love her children anyway? Are they the only reminders of what her father did to her? I don't think so. I would imagine that even if she never had a child, she would never ever forget the violations that she endured. But, I digress.

When I first heard about the Born Alive Act, I got physically sick. I don't know what rock I have been hiding under, especially considering that I am such a strong advocate for pro-life, but now reading about the fact that there are abortions being carried out at such an advanced stage that the fetuses can actually survive outside the womb just astonishes me. The fact that these babies are left to die, brings me to my knees. I'm not trying to be dramatic here. I've seen and heard lots of horrible things and taken them with a strong stomach. Reading about the 31 year old woman who survived an abortion and the stories of what goes on today actually made me vomit. IMO, the moral highground is gone. It is strictly infanticide and to try to call it anything else is just ridiculous. If an abortion results in a live birth, just have the mother sign her rights away and let her get on with life. Thousands of childless couples would give their eye teeth to have these unwanted children as their own. I don't want to hear anymore of this "my body, my choice" crap. If this baby is surviving outside of your body, it is no longer your choice, so just shut up and go home. Never think about this child again if that is what you want. But if you order a living baby's execution, then you deserve whatever hell you get.

Obama, no matter how he tries to spin it, voted against medical treatment for these unwanted children. Then he lied about it. A truly vile human being if there ever was one. I can't pretend to be unbiased anymore. My scale has been tipped irrevocably and heaven help us all if this immoral murderer takes charge of our country.


Doc Brown said...

I have never been a big fan of late term abortions either. I've always felt that if a woman can't figure out what she wants to do by the end of the the third month, then she's not worthy of being a parent.

I can understand having a child may not be an easy decision, but any woman who decides to chicken out at the last minute ought to be legally obligated to have her tubes tied because it's obvious they'll be a lousy parent.

Of course, I think a lot of abortions could be avoided if we could just get those religious cock ups out of everyone's private business and endorse morning after pills.

These people whine about life beginning at conception, but act like the woman gets pregnant two seconds after the man shoots his load. Maybe if these people learned a little science rather than sticking their heads in the good book hoping to pray their hormones away, they'd learn that conception takes many hours and can sometimes take a few days. Morning after pills prevent conception. (Which is not what RU486 does.)

But I guess that rant is not germane to this discussion. As for Obama, it's obvious there's no way to tell what's going on here without reading both the Illinois version of the law and the Federal version.

The problem with pundits is that it is their job to cherry pick information and slant it to their will. Which means you never get the full story from one of them and I sincerely doubt you can glean it from both sides combined. It's actually really sad that they can't just admit that it is their personal feelings. Instead, they try to pass off their feelings as though it's objective.

It's sad really. Kudos to you Polly for at least admitting it first thing.

Polly TickedOff said...

I support the morning after pill. You are absolutely correct in the conception time line. Woman have miscarriages all the time and never even know that they were pregnant. The body itself can be a real hostile environment in the early stages. But if a woman who has carried a child seven months wants an abortion, that is just sickening. Compounding the matter are the doctors that perform the botched abortion and then let the living baby die without any kind of medical response.

I linked just two of the many sites available that discuss this particular situation with Obama. The first one, because the young woman tells the story in her own words. The second because you can see from Carville's squirming that the dems are desperately trying to spin and deny Obama's position.

When Pastor Rick Warren asked Barack Obama "at what point does a baby get human rights," Mr. Obama hesitated and answered, "Well, you know, I think that whether you're looking at it from a theological perspective or a scientific perspective, answering that question with specificity, you know, is above my pay grade."

I'm not sure why he thinks that this matter is above his pay grade. The question is quite simple. When is a baby afforded human rights? His answer tries to make it sound as if it is a theological debate, but it really isn't. He wasn't asked at what point does a baby have a soul. The presidential wannabe was asked a question about human rights, a subject that he will definitely have to address in some manner at some point during his presidency. He was not asked to explain the difference between a fetus and a baby. IMO, a fetus stops being a fetus and becomes a baby if it is born alive. Since it has been proven that a woman 28 weeks pregnant can still get an abortion and a baby born at 24 weeks can survive and flourish with medical assistance, how can you sit there and try to tell me that the 28 week old should not be afforded some basic rights if it is strong enough to survive the abortion procedure?

"In 2001 and 2002, then-state Sen. Obama vigorously opposed a bill which defined very specifically when babies get human rights. The Born Alive Infant Protection Act (BAIPA), both the federal and Illinois versions, conveyed legal personhood to infants who accidentally survived an abortion. As if to answer Rev. Warren's question long before it was asked, Mr. Obama provided the rationale for his position in a 2001 speech on the Illinois Senate floor:
"No.1, whenever we define a previable fetus as a person that is protected by the equal protection clause or the other elements in the Constitution, what we're really saying is, in fact, that they are persons that are entitled to the kinds of protections that would be provided to a - a child, a 9-month-old - child that was delivered to term. That determination then, essentially, if it was accepted by a court, would forbid abortions to take place. I mean, it - it would essentially bar abortions, because the equal protection clause does not allow somebody to kill a child, and if this is a child, then this would be an antiabortion statute."

No it most certainly is not. The act, in any of its forms, never seeks to take away the right to have an abortion. The language speaks solely to the right to give medical assistance to a baby born alive if it survives the abortion procedure. There is no ambiguity in the wording at either the state level or the federal level. To make the claim that there is, is just BS.

Obama's problem is that he either (1) didn't bother to read the material in the first place carefully enough to determine the accurate language, or (2) really just doesn't give a crap about the actual murder of a living child breathing outside of its mother's womb. I'm not sure which I find more troubling in a presidential candidate.

Doc Brown said...

Hehe, well considering we agree on this matter for the most part, I'll just say that those aren't the only two options for Obama's thinking. More likely, he's being a politician and is looking to not get backed into a corner on a volatile issue. I know I could find other issues that McCain has backed away from. I seem to recall him getting into a spot of trouble a few months ago by something one of his female representatives said and when he was asked about it point blank he was caught so off guard he was speechless and could say nothing. As I recall, it was also about female health care issues. (I'd provide a link, but I saw it on The Daily Show and am too lazy to look into it.)

Anyway, when it comes to hotbed issues like female health, men back peddle like seasoned linebackers and if they can get away with not taking a stand, they will. Obama just had the misfortune of getting it caught on a governmental record.

I kind of like Obama's response about such determinations being above his pay grade. It's rather clever.

Is it true? Well, you know how nitpicky I can be and I'll just say the question is ill formed and not worthy of answering because it assumes that a baby and a fetus are the same thing. Asking when a baby obtains human rights is absurd because a baby is a human and therefore already has human rights. The proper question is "When does a fetus become a baby?"

This, I suspect, is what Obama is backing away from (or should be) because in our society a fetus does not have any rights. So how can you answer such a loaded question to people who think a baby and a fetus are the same thing? (Or worse, to people who don't know the proper distinction.)

Sadly, I can answer this question, and you know the answer already. A fetus becomes a baby when it is properly birthed. At least, that is the legal de facto definition.

Is it right? Is it moral? I have my opinions, which are more strict than what I would be willing to accept from the laws, but at the end of the day I have to allow people to make their own choices. I may not like them, but I can't take them away no matter how stupid I know they are. It is my number one _belief_ and trumps my _opinion_ that a fetus becomes a baby once the heartbeat begins.

I guess in the end, the "no choice" religious people are getting a does of their own medicine. They forsake books like Harry Potter because it is supposed to represent a slippery slope of our morals (a logical fallacy aptly named the slippery slope fallacy) but in this case people refused to allow this bill to pass because it represented a slippery slope of a woman's right to choose.

And so we bust up another myth. Two wrongs don't make anything right. They're both just wrong and there is no right. At least not one suitable for everyone.

Polly TickedOff said...

My problem with Obama in this matter is his blatant lie about the language. This is the relevant text from the federal BAIPA document. Part C is especially significant in opposing his position on negating abortion.

(a) In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, or of any ruling, regulation, or interpretation of the various administrative bureaus and agencies of the United States, the words ''person'', ''human being'', ''child'', and ''individual'', shall include every infant member of the species homo sapiens who is born alive at any stage of development.

(b) As used in this section, the term ''born alive'', with respect to a member of the species homo sapiens, means the complete expulsion or extraction from his or her mother of that member, at any stage of development, who after such expulsion or extraction breathes or has a beating heart, pulsation of the umbilical cord, or definite movement of voluntary muscles, regardless of whether the umbilical cord has been cut, and regardless of whether the expulsion or extraction occurs as a result of natural or induced labor, cesarean section, or induced abortion.

(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to affirm, deny, expand, or contract any legal status or legal right applicable to any member of the species homo sapiens at any point prior to being ''born alive'' as defined in this section.

This sounds pretty clear to me. I have no doubt that he doesn't want to take a stand on a volatile issue. That's the problem. I want a president that will take a stand even when it is not popular. I'm not sure what incident with McCain you are referring to, but I'm sure it happened. He waffles too, just like any other politician. However, it is one thing to say "The economy is ________" or "The war in Iraq is ___________". It is something altogether different to say that a living breathing baby has no right to keep living outside the womb because a doctor botched an abortion. I will never be pro-choice, but I can at least stomach the argument that if a fetus cannot be born alive outside the womb at the time of an abortion, the survival of said fetus was entirely dependant upon the mother's biological functions, thus making her willing participation in the survival of the fetus a necessity. When you start talking about that fetus being born alive, the willing participation is no longer required and the decision of granting medical intervention in sustaining that life should no longer be that of the mother.

What I would like to see is a law that bans late term abortions entirely. At the very least, a law that requires the pregnant woman to waive her rights to interfere with any medical response in the event of a live birth. Of course, that waiver would also strip the mother of any legal rights or responsibilities for the infant. Believe me, I would not want a child saddled with that kind of mother for any reason whatsoever. Of course the problem would be the argument for some that the mother would now change her mind and say "well, its still my child and I don't want to know that there is a child of mine growing up in the world somewhere". EEEEEEE! Wrong answer and thank you for playing Worst Mother Ever. IMO, these women give up their rights the minute they lay down on the table and say "get rid of it". Sorry ladies, can't have it both ways.

Polly TickedOff said...

By the way, this is a good site about the wording of the Illinois BAIPA that Obama killed. It is identical to the federal wording. That is where the lie came in.

Doc Brown said...

Yeah, I had already looked that info up. I decided if I was going to be discussing it, then I ought to be mildly familiar with what I was talking about. ;-)

It certainly doesn't look good for Obama, but I doubt it's an election killer, if only because 99% of the people out there have their unswayable opinion and won't bother to look it up, no matter how simple and painless a process it may be.

For me, this just puts everything back the way it was. Politicians are liars. I'll always be pro-choice, but since the age of 17 I have always qualified that with "It's the choice of a well informed, well thought out woman." (I'm not even going to get into teenage abortions, I use the word "woman" for a reason.)

I've said this before, for me, I have always felt life begins once the fetus' heart starts beating because up to that point it's just a glob of cells stuck to the wall of a uterus. As you said, people don't even realize how often the body naturally aborts prior (even after) this point.

If it were up to me, abortions wouldn't be allowed after the heart starts beating. Sadly this happens around day 8 or 9 after conception. Which is not usually long enough for a woman to find out about the pregnancy and then make an informed decision. Because of this, I'm willing to let it go as long as 3 months.

I know it's not always possible to tell exactly, but that's where I've always drawn the line. If it takes a woman longer than that to learn of the pregnancy and then make a decision, then they ought to be legally obligated to decide one way or the other and live with the consequences. Heaven forbid people take responsibility for themselves and their actions.

Abortions in the last trimester, shouldn't even be available, but I agree that if the fetus comes out alive, then they ought to be considered a baby. Doctors who let the new born fetus/baby die are, in my opinion, violating their Hippocratic oath.

Now why couldn't God have made the fetal heart start beating around week 5 or 6. Just picking the 3 month mark is an unsatisfyingly arbitrary point to make the cut off. There is nothing arbitrary about a heart beginning the beating process, that would have made the perfect cut off point for the legality of abortions.

I'm rambling now. I'll stop.