Friday, November 11, 2011

Enough now with the "Personhood" Amendments!

Well, for the third time in three years the "Personhood" amendment has failed across these United States. Indeed, its most recent incarnation even flopped in the heart of the "Bible Belt" namely in Mississippi and in the area around Mississippi College, affiliated with the state Baptist Convention.

But according to today's WSJ (p. A6): "in the three county metro area that encompasses Jackson, the 'personhood amendment' was rejected by almost 69% of the votes cast."

Meanwhile, statewide, 58% of voters cast votes against the amendment and the resistance was across age, race and class lines. In some places, especially college campuses, the tensions were so severe that it was being described as "Christian against Christian". The reason? Evidently, many critically thinking Christians properly saw this amendment as a step too far, and way..way beyond the bounds of simply protecting life.

This bollocks appeared before in 2010 and also in 2008. On both occasions here in Colorado it was roundly defeated, and so badly the last time, one would have thought its proponents would have tucked their tails between their legs and finally found something better to do with their time. But see, because they are zealots, they're unable to do that. So they simply "regroup" for the next election cycle, wasting taxpayers' money and time as they do so. They aren't motivated by facts, data or logic but specious beliefs.

Accordingly, their amendment states that a "fertilized human egg is a person, whether in a woman's uterus or in a test tube."

Let's leave aside for the moment the fact that no sane person in his or her right mind can possibly regard a "zygote" as a person. There is simply no standard by which that passes even elemental laws or tests of logic, or science. A person, a human person, must have at least minimal capacity for basic cognition and rudimentary choice. It must possess a brain, at the very least, which evinces definite brain waves. Anything that doesn't is a proto-human entity, but clearly not a person. The logical error made is called the "genetic fallacy". That is, arguing that because a thing is going to become something, it IS something. It would be like me picking up an acorn and claiming it's an oak tree. Nope. No way.

Then there is the aspect of unintended consequences, which I actually believe drove most sane Christians to vote against it. Consider here, that if (by the dicates of the amendment) the destruction of fertilized eggs is outlawed then that would mean wholesale banning of various birth control devices. For example, it would ban the use of all IUDs, or intra-uterine devices, by virtue of the fact that while they permit fertilization they impede the attachment of the fertilized egg to the uterine wall. Hence, any woman using one would -by the letter of the law- be eligible for imprisonment, perhaps up to five years or more.

The morning after pill would also be criminal to use, because its primary benefit is to destroy a fertilized egg after the fact, e.g. the morning after. Beyond that, it is certainly plausible that any pregnant women deemed to exhibit "dire disrespect for the life of the zygote" might be taken in by the fertilization cops. For example, if caught having one too many at a bar, or lighting up a toke - say at a party. Even if they participate in an event (say 5K run) deemed not to be in their best interest.

The worst thing is that even with such passage, the psychotically driven lunatics behind it likely won't be satisfied and may be encouraged to go one step further: say outlawing the slaughter of sperm cells as "potential living persons" (i.e. after being united with eggs). In this hellacious case, all male masturbators would be fined and imprisoned merely for performing a vital function which many medical practitioners recommend (to reduce the risk of prostate cancer, see e.g. Dorothy Baldwin's monograph 'Understanding Male Sexual Health').

DO we really, really want to go there? Have some possible poor guy in some dark, zealot-driven future emerge as a test case to face execution for committing a "holocaust" via release of semen outside of an act of potential conception?

I don't think so!

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