Scott Roeder, claimed "savior of children" (actually semi-viable protosplasm-unable to live independently- with no brain signals) finally got the book thrown at him as the Judge in the court convened inWichita, KS didn't accept his nonsense excuse for butchering Dr. George Tiller at the very church he attended. (The original plea by Roeder's defense was to have been manslaughter- instead he got Life in prison for murder)
Of course, the Fundie maniacs will continue on their faux warpath despite this, and not process the irony in killing a full human to save proto- humans. They will also continue to claim that abortion is tantamount to "murder" - despite the fact that no nation has awarded a fetus at any stage human rights., and only 1 or 2 states feature laws that make the killing of a pregnant woman equal to two homicides.
Consider for a moment that those who insist a fetus is a full human person are guilty of committing the genetic fallacy. As Antony Flew notes in ‘Thinking About Thinking’, p. 101:
“The genetic fallacy consists in arguing that the antecedents of something must be the same as their fulfillment. Or, that a fetus, even from the moment of conception- must really be, because it is going to become – a person. In the same way they might argue that an acorn....because it will become an oak tree....is actually an oak tree".
When one thinks about this seriously, it doesn’t square with the facts at hand. It puts an essential biological parasite (inasmuch as it can’t sustain independent existence) on the same level as say….a fully formed nineteen-year old fighting in Afghanistan. It thereby also puts the death of the latter person – who has formed hundreds of mature relationships, performed thousands of duties, and created numerous creative works- on the same level as eliminating an agglomeration of cells with a rudimentary human shape but no personality, no conscious awareness that rises to the level of say, a three-month old chimp.
Now, anti-abortionists will insist that from the instant of conception the zygote is a human person. This is not correct, because while it may have some semblance of rudimentary humanness it is no person. There is no authentic consciousness, nor is there any ability to communicate in even the most crude fashion.
In the April 22, 1990 issue of PARADE, one of the most audacious articles on abortion appeared, co-written by Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan. The authors, using sound science, attempted to steer a midway path between the contentious extremes of the abortion minefield. What they sought to determine is whether there was some point after which NO abortion should ever be performed.
They used as a threshold criterion the onset of recognizable human thinking. As they noted (ibid., p. 7):
“In fact, this is a very conservative definition. Regular brain waves are rarely found in fetuses. To make the criterion still more stringent, to allow for precocious fetal development, we might draw the line at six months. This amounts to prohibition in the last trimester, except in cases of grave medical necessity. It strikes a fair balance between the conflicting claims of freedom and life”
Ramping up their case, the authors accurately note that the greatest “abortionist” of all is not Man, but Nature. She aborts with a frequency that boggles the mind, compared to human intervention and artifice. Thus, totally purist pro-lifers are left to defend their position against the vicious vagaries of Mother Nature, while they attempt to erect absolutist sanctions against poor women, or those lacking access to proper birth control.
Finally, in what can only be described as a coup-de-grace, Sagan and Druyan note that the Catholic Church itself held that abortion was allowable up to about the first three months of pregnancy – “according to the Catholic Church’s first and long standing collection of Canon Law” – citing John Connery, S.J. a leading historian of the Church’s teaching on abortion.
The authors noted: “it was not until 1869 that abortion for any reason became grounds for excommunication”
Interestingly, the “papal infallibility” doctrine was first proclaimed in 1870. Clearly, the fact the Church already changed its doctrine on abortion shows it can do so again. Hence, one must question whether either of its positions (before and after 1869) embodies any kind of "absolute moral" position.
Obviously, if you can alter a position, it is hardly "absolute". In his marvelous book, Infallible?, Catholic Theologian Hans Kung observes the following (p. 143):
“..no one, neither Vatican I, nor Vatican II, nor the textbook theologians, has shown that the Church - its leadership or its theology - is able to put forward propositions which inherently cannot be erroneous."
Which brings up the question: When will the fundie evangelicals and their lot also recognize that they can't make statements or claims which "inherently can't be erroneous"?
These fundies will also wish to ask themselves if such a right to life really exists, is there not also a natural right to life for the already born?
They might consider that the next time they and their conservative cohort vote down health care bills that would provide for the 25 million uninsured children in this country, or prohibit new legislation that would enable free child care provisions such as exist in Barbados and many other nations.
In other words, until they get serious about the needs of the already born, their wallowing and whining about the lives of the "unborn" will not be met with tons of sympathy or reinforcement. They may also want to get hold of the book Freakonomics, which makes the serious claim (and case) that all the abortions in the U.S. since Roe v. Wade in 1973 have actually controlled the recorded number of rapes, homicides, vicious manslaughters....by virtue of the fact that those criminals never got born. Had Roe v. Wade not been in place, millions of deficient mal-formed humans(think millions of Jeffrey Dahmers), born into poor homes or from lousy incompetent parents - would have grown to become criminal adults: murderers, rapists, gang bangers and robbers. Their remaining unborn not only saved hundreds of thousands of lives, but also billions in the cost to imprison them.