Shit, foeti aren’t actually guppies?

Nothing like being called “evil” to warm my heart on a freezing Wellington night.

But there’s something that keeps cropping up that I need to address.

It’s this notion:

Even women who believe in abortion would know down deep what they’re doing and try to block out that side of it.

Women are in denial, people (or the more common alternative, women don’t realise it’s a Baby(TM)).

Women just don’t know – or pretend not to know – that what’s growing inside them (and using their bodily resources and permanently altering their body and potentially damaging their health or even killing them) is a precious rosy-cheeked infant just waiting to compose symphonies and cure cancer.

Women, you see, are a bit thick.*

Oh, wait.

Maybe women do actually know It’s A Baby.

Maybe that’s why they want a fucking abortion.

Maybe that Baby is the result of rape.  Maybe that Future Beethoven will forever connect her to an abuser and give him another weapon to use – heck, another victim.  Maybe that Precious Life is going to kill her.  Maybe that Gift From God is going to take resources and energy to raise which she can’t give – oh, and fuck off especially on this one, fundies, unless you have honestly never bitched about women getting welfare to raise the children you want to force them to have.

Maybe she really, really wants this child, has planned for this child, has prayed for this child, and there are complications which mean its life will be nasty brutish and short.  Or she gets diagnosed with cancer and if she doesn’t get chemo they’ll both die.  Or she has a family history of illness that she doesn’t want to pass on.  Maybe this is the most fucking heartwrenching horrible decision she has ever made, and yes! Yes, spucwits, maybe she WILL regret it, and feel terrible, and hate herself, and feel like she thoroughly deserves the harsh judgment you so like to pretend you’re not passing out.  And yeah, she probably doesn’t want to think about The Horror She Is Committing.

But she still knows it’s a fucking Baby(TM).  She still knows it would, with time and frankly luck on the health front, be born and become an autonomous human being.  She knows that by having an abortion she will stop that Innocent Potential from ever being fulfilled.

The only thing that is certain, when people start saying “women hide the truth from themselves” and “women need to understand It’s A Life Growing Inside Her [against her will]”?  Is that those people think women are stupid and thus denying them choice is a-okay.

When women seek an abortion, they know they have a Baby(TM) growing inside them.  They’d like it to stop.  That’s why they want an abortion.

~~~

PS.  Chris Trotter seems oddly defensive about me commenting on his post, with that whole “OH I AM SO HONOURED YOUR MAJESTY” shtick (oh man, don’t I qualify as a “Comrade”?).  Dude, you quoted me.  That’s how these Internets work.

And he still doesn’t understand this “numbers without context are meaningless” concept.  Did y’all know that in the past two years my salary has doubled?  Quick Chris!  Draw conclusions about the economy and state of NZ workers’ rights without bothering to find out if it’s because I finished uni and changed jobs, that’d get in the way of soulful rhetorical questions!

Also (dammit woman, get some impulse control) apparently Chris’ post could not possibly contribute to stigmatizing abortion.  This is because Chris is a pansy effeminate bitch, and in saying that I cannot possibly have contributed to societal discourse which devalues the non-masculine because society already does that.

~~~

PPS.  I also love the way some people have reacted entirely predictably to my shits-and-giggles comment.  It’s hard to pick what’s really funny about “abortion images” though;  is it the obviously fake stories attached (the doctor put it in the microwave and drank it through a straw!!!)?  Is it the way that a smudge of jelly really fails to make the antichoicers’ “it’s a BABY!!!! With feet and an appendix!” arguments?  Is it the fact that, in the age of Saw movies, even real-looking gore doesn’t really pack a punch – thus revealing the images’ creators for the out-of-touch privileged old wankers they are?

~~~

*And isn’t it fucking amazing how yet again, the reactionary forces of privilege use the same bloody arguments in every single issue?  See also, “fat people don’t realise they’re fat.”  Because they live in basements, apparently, with no access to mass media.

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29 comments

  1. ZenTiger

    You take the argument “women are in denial” which could more fairly be a discussion on not understanding the emotional consequences of their action, to “they don’t know it’s a baby”. Nice move.

    Even then, once we acknowledge “it’s a baby” you take every opportunity to reinforce “the lump of cells” perspective.

    Do you have a line in the sand as to when a mother can terminate the baby?

    Is it any moment up until or during birth?

    Is it even after birth? (That is a serious question, given some people argue for this. Some just do it, like the mother who tried to flush her baby down the toilet recently))

    • QoT

      Your first point is a fair one in that the comment calling me “evil” only made the denial argument; but the “need to realise it’s a baby” one comes up even more often and late at night I couldn’t be arsed trawling through stuff.co.nz comments.

      Try reading my previous posts, note that I have pretty clearly spelled out that my support for abortion rights is premised on the fact that no person, born or otherwise, has the right to demand the use of another’s body, and draw your own conclusions.

      As to your “serious question”? It’s farcical bullshit, on the same lines as “but if we let men marry men, will we let people marry their dogs???” It’s antichoice derailing 101 and it’s frankly boring.

  2. RedLogix

    the fact that no person, born or otherwise, has the right to demand the use of another’s body,

    From this I have to conclude that you support abortion rights for the full 9 months of gestation.
    I’m happy to be corrected if I’ve assumed wrong.

    And given that all human children are innately dependent on the efforts of their parent’s bodies for many years AFTER birth…this argument must logically include the right to dispose of any unwanted child up to the age of physical independenc; .maybe 14 yrs old.

    It’s not the same question as “will we let people marry dogs”; given the the long human history of infanticide….females especially…its a perfectly valid question. Of course the right to kill dependent children is an absurdity, but your argument on it’s own does not seem to exclude it.

    • Boganette

      “And given that all human children are innately dependent on the efforts of their parent’s bodies for many years AFTER birth”

      – Um no they’re not.

    • QoT

      You wouldn’t think the difference between an umbilical cord and a bassinet would be so difficult to grasp, would ya, B?

  3. steph

    The whole ‘if only women knew what they were really doing and that being pregnant means there will eventually be a baby’ thing is ridiculous. In the US it is taken to such an extreme; trying to make it mandatory for women to view an ultrasound before having an abortion, with the stated reasoning that women might not realise there’s a potential life inside them (but with the ACTUAL reason of trying to pull a childish guilt/shame trip). Basically it implies that women are thick. Like, super mega dumb. As you said, women get that what’s in them will become a baby. It’s insulting to act like the only reason we have abortions is because we don’t know what an abortion really is, or what being pregnant actually means.

  4. Julie

    “And given that all human children are innately dependent on the efforts of their parent’s bodies for many years AFTER birth…this argument must logically include the right to dispose of any unwanted child up to the age of physical independenc”

    Ah yes, but the kicker in this argument is that until birth there is only one person whose body can support the fetus. Trust me, I’ve done this a few times. But from the moment of birth, once the baby is on the outside, as it were, then actually what they need can be provided by anyone at all. Otherwise babies whose mothers die in childbirth (yes it does happen, even in NZ) would be doomed, when that is usually not the case unless there are other medical difficulties.

    Keep it up QoT, don’t let them get you down, you are doing good stuff 🙂

  5. The Megapope

    But womens just HAVEN’T REALLY CONSIDERED ALL THE IMPLICATIONS quite like men can, QoT. It’s because we have bigger brains due to being hunter gatherers. If you womens actually REALLY THOUGHT about the consequences, you’d totally want to have that rape baby! This is why men write abortion legislation, it’s for your own good.

  6. RedLogix

    But from the moment of birth, once the baby is on the outside, as it were, then actually what they need can be provided by anyone at all.

    But society generally expects the birth mother (and father indirectly) to take full responsibility for raising their offspring; adoption (ie anyone else providing their needs) being generally deprecated these days. Which in practise more or less closes off that line of reasoning.

    But it’s my understanding, and again please correct me if I’m wrong, most women seek a termination because they feel they are in no economic or social position to undertake the consequent lifetime demands and responsibilities of parenting for this child. That’s something I can identify with; that’s why I’ve always understood the prime roots of this fractious issue to lie deep within social and economic inequalities.

    But if as you say, anyone can provide for the needs of any child, and if open adoption were a commonplace and satisfactory option, where would remain the logic for abortion? Aside from the desire to avoid 9 months of gestation?

    • QoT

      Society’s “general expectations” are hardly the same thing as having another organism physically attached to and dependent on your body, RL. That only “closes off” that line of reasoning in the minds of those who want to pretend that pregnancy is “just” 9 months of time (and even if it were, I’m not obligated to give anyone so much as 5 minutes’ use of my organs).

    • RedLogix

      Society’s “general expectations” are hardly the same thing as having another organism physically attached to and dependent on your body,

      But abortion if nothing else is all about ‘society’s expectations; divorced from that context the very word abortion is totally meaningless. The fact remains that society that demands of parents, mothers in particular, care and responsibility for their children. Infanticide is a criminal act and even adoption, if still legal, is nowadays rather hard to arrange.

      Both of these ‘expectations’ effectively lock parents into 20yrs of child-raising, a responsibility most people would describe as far more onerous than 9 months of pregnancy.

      I’m not obligated to give anyone so much as 5 minutes’ use of my organs

      While it has great rhetorical force, simply doesn’t line up with the actual reasons most young women find themselves attending clinic.

      Worse still it logically implies that an abortion could be performed, hypothetically at least, at any time right up to within 5 minutes of birth. Well in practise that’s pretty unlikely, but again the argument does not exclude it.

      But certainly most people are going to be very resistant to the implication that it’s ok for the mother to retain the unilateral right to terminate a viable child within weeks ,or days even, of birth. Personally I know that I would see little difference between that and infanticide, and it strikes me as plain willful to defend the right to abortion with reasoning that has such an obvious and egregious objection.

      A reasoning that far from being absolute, inherently becomes less and less viable as each week of the second and third trimesters march by.

      It is the prospect of an ill-equiped, undesired parenthood, not the prospect of someone else using their organs for 9 months, that is surely prime reason why abortions occur. Which is why the no person, born or otherwise, has the right to demand the use of another’s body argument simply doesn’t line up for me. And likely won’t for most folk.

    • QoT

      You seem to be confusing two separate things, RL. A woman’s reason for getting an abortion may be many things; health, finance, a life choice to not reproduce. The justification for allowing her to get that abortion is where her autonomy as a human being who controls her own biological resources comes in.

      And I tend not to form my opinions based on what “most folk” may or may not think.

    • RedLogix

      I guess my starting point is that in a perfect world, abortion would be largely unecessary, that all women would have access to better choices; better contraception, better options for adoption, orfar better prospects around parenthood. Ideally abortion might be something only minimally necessary. But in the very imperfect world we do live in, the paucity of these options has its roots deeply buried in economic inequality.

      To my mind abortion should be legal and tolerable because injustices of the economic system we live under, renders parenthood an intolerable and unjust burden for many women. An argument that directly points toward a solution.

      By contrast abortion is were her autonomy as a human being who controls her own biological resources comes in is merely an argument for more of an ancient and clumsy form of post-conception birth control. It points nowhere to anything better.

      as would be the wishes, desires, demands, needs and potential of any human being who walked up to me and said “Give me your cardiovascular system.

      Surely if someone demanded such, it would be fatal to you, and obviously unacceptable. Yet if the same person needed vital medical care to survive, if they needed to share with you shelter and sustenance at only a modest or minimal cost to you…it would be a cold person to rebuff the request, condemning them to certain death. Indeed in many circumstance failing to offer such assistance would be criminally prosecutable.

      Inevitably there will remain the view that a woman’s biological autonomy does not always and absolutely trump the rights of the individual life embedded in her. For the reasons ZT outlines below, I don’t think that response will ever go away.

      What we do have is a tolerable compromise; that during the first trimester the right of the mother to seek a termination is trumps; past that point the rights of the feotus as a human life begin to gain force. It’s a reasonable, workable solution in an unreasonable, unjust world.

      Remind me now, why are we rocking this boat again?

    • QoT

      why are we rocking this boat again?

      Thanks, RL. I was all ready to respond to your points as regards “perfect world” scenarios and the irrelevance of whether continuing pregnancy is the “nice thing to do”, but then you went and ruined everything by revealing, yet again, that this has fuck all to do with the arguments around abortion. It’s about “rocking the boat” and forcing people to actually think about issues that affect women and articulate their position. How naughty of us!

  7. ZenTiger

    Try reading my previous posts, note that I have pretty clearly spelled out that my support for abortion rights is premised on the fact that no person, born or otherwise, has the right to demand the use of another’s body, and draw your own conclusions.

    OK, had a quick look. Regarding your premise: I don’t see where a baby is “demanding” the use of the mother’s body though. The baby has been placed in that situation without any specific action on it’s part. Indeed, generally, the mother had something to do with the fetus getting there in the first place.

    Your language throughout is to treat the fetus as some kind of alien invader that is out to feed off you, rather than your offspring. I think if that’s the way some women see things, it is no wonder they wish for the right to terminate the life.

    As to your “serious question”? It’s farcical bullshit, on the same lines as “but if we let men marry men, will we let people marry their dogs???” It’s antichoice derailing 101 and it’s frankly boring.

    I’ve found a post where you seem to say a women can terminate the fetus up until the moment the umbilical cord is cut. Thanks, that puts things in perspective.

    • QoT

      “the mother had something to do with [it]”

      Thanks for the already-predicted-by-me response, ZT, and for establishing, yet again, that this is far less about “life” and a lot more about women having sex you don’t approve of.

    • QoT

      Tell you what, ZT. Just for you, let’s pretend the verb is “requires” or “needs” or “is dependent on”. Argument remains completely the same and your derail into The Baby(TM) Is Innocent territory is negated. Now run along.

  8. ZenTiger

    That actually changes the meaning behind the words though considerably doesn’t it?

    note that I have pretty clearly spelled out that my support for abortion rights is premised on the fact that no person, born or otherwise, has the right to need, depend upon or require the use of another’s body, and draw your own conclusions.

    The problem is, it’s not so much a right that is expected, it’s just the way life is. The very nature of the cycle of life “forces” this upon the mother.

    And once the cycle of life has started, then what you are demanding, on behalf of pregnant women, is the right to terminate it on account it is their body, and their decision, are you not?

    When women seek an abortion, they know they have a Baby(TM) growing inside them. They’d like it to stop. That’s why they want an abortion.

    That was your final point of the post, and well made. That is the essence of it.

    Although note that your point above made out that the The Baby(TM) is making “demands” on the women, and really, your argument to me seems to be less to do with that, and more about about a women’s sovereignty over her own body trumps absolutely any other argument that might come along.

    If that is the case, I don’t have an answer for that opinion that I think would sway you, in a small comment box here on this blog.

    It is too restricted a space to try to wrap up the threads that could possibly hope to acknowledge the need for empathy and understanding to women in a tough situation you have outlined so well in other posts. Not to mention that our society is pretty much deficient in so many areas that touch this topic.

    And yet, with all that commentary, I’d still not want to lose sight of my own viewpoint that there is a need to affirm the intrinsic value of all life, and seek ways to encourage that basic philosophy, because I’ve read so many stories from women who wished they weren’t so quick to choose an abortion.

    Who would want to sit by and say nothing after reading those personal accounts?

    • QoT

      I don’t think it changes anything, ZT, because the wishes, desires, demands, needs, potential, ANYTHING of the foetus is irrelevant to me, as would be the wishes, desires, demands, needs and potential of any human being who walked up to me and said “Give me your cardiovascular system.”

      I like to think it’s entirely the compassionate, sympathetic, and right thing to *not* demand women jump through bureaucratic hoops while making what we can all agree is usually *not* an easy decision.

  9. Boganette

    So just to be clear – if we change the abortion laws in NZ women will flush their newborn babies down the toilet. Yep, that makes sense.

    About the shits and giggles comment – I laughed. I mean I know I’m an evil Satan Worshipping ball stealer but I saw the comment for what it is – and the tragic humour in the whole fake abortion photos internet collection. The “foetus” pictures sent out by anti-choicers are a way to really understand how their side works. These are people who get 30 week plus miscarried foetuses and stretch out the limbs and try to force a thumb into a mouth and then claim it’s a 12 week-old aborted foetus. I mean they’re sick fucks. And that’s what people should think about when they see those photos. Almost all the ‘famous/infamous’ foetus pics championed by anti-choice groups have been discredited by medical experts who can look at the image and *know* it’s not that of an under 25 week foetus. Or an aborted foetus. Almost all are miscarried foetusesat the later stages of pregnancy or stillborn babies.

    But shhhh don’t say anything right? Because you’re evil if you even question the context of those photos. But of course you’re not evil if you take a miscarried baby and manipulate it’s body so that you can abuse women with it.

  10. Ari

    You know, I just spent about an hour trying to find SOMETHING on tapeworm anatomy on the internet, and I still don’t know if the little parasites have hearts or not.

    I’m kind of disappointed, it would have been a lovely line.

  11. Chris Trotter

    Whooaa! Her Majesty really doesn’t appreciate irony, does she?

    FYI, QoT, all that elaborate “courtesy” was just my way of saying “thank-you” for being officially listed as “scum”.

    If you dish it out, Comrade, you got to be willing to take it.

    So, man-up – you big girl!

    • QoT

      Ladies and gentlemen, tonight’s poll question: is this comment a really good, if belated, impostor, or is Chris Trotter seriously the kind of real-life troll who takes two weeks to come up with the line “you big girl”?

  12. Chris Trotter

    “Chris is a pansy effeminate bitch, and in saying that I cannot possibly have contributed to societal discourse which devalues the non-masculine because society already does that.”
    – QoT

    “Man-up – you big girl” – Chris Trotter.

    Nope, Her Majesty really does NOT get irony.

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