Abortion

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What do you think of Abortion?

Its murder no matter which way you look at it
30
46%
Its only murder if it has fully developed
21
32%
There is nothing wrong with it it isn't truly alive
14
22%
 
Total votes: 65

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TF.
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Re: Abortion

Post by TF. » Tue Oct 26, 2010 7:44 pm

Current wrote:Just to clarify something, do you accept the following?
A mental process can take place without anyone being conscious of it (consciousness of X happening is distinct from X happening)
Consciousness of consciousness is indistinguishable from consciousness itself. (consciousness is an exception to the rule above)

Can't really make an argument unless I'm sure I get you.
ummm... :thinking:
Yeah. Unconscious/subconscious thoughts can occur automatically without our conscious awareness. (like how our brain regulates heartbeat and recognises the individual letters in a sentence and so on). And yes, I would equate consciousness to a consciousness of consciousness. (which is probably a circular premise but it backs up my disregard for animal sentience :) )
Current wrote:I meant the classic version of using the mirror to recognise oneself, not using it as a tool. I.e. if we can tell an animal recognises itself, then we know it has self-awareness. Which is just kicking the problem back another step, but I don't know of any better tool, and a perfect one likely won't exist until we understand the neurological basis of consciousness.
Definitely. When a chimp looks in the mirror and is able to recognise itself and play around in front of it I'm pretty convinced that he or she is both self-aware and sentient. When pidgeons and pigs just find food or follow their training based on reflected images I'm not as impressed. But then, could a chimp's behaviour be automatic as well? I don't think so but I'm not sure why. How is automatically recognising one's physical position in relation to food any different from recognising oneself in a mirror? This actually seems like a pretty big hole in my argument unless you assume that there is no proof of the chimp's self-awareness. I'm going to think about this though because I'm still convinced of that self-awareness.

It could actually turn out that there is no physical basis for selfawareness or consciousness. Our own consciousness could be illusory since we perceive, quite intimately, the desires, perceptions and thoughts of our minds but cannot be sure that they are generated from ourselves. We are able to think but perhaps, like Hume established back in the day, it is all an automatic process and our notion of the 'self' is an illusion. But that removes the issue of whether animals are sentient because even sentience and self-awareness are automatic functions. And now it's even more complicated. Oh dear.

Nevertheless, it can't really be proven without doubt that any creature external to the mind is acting automatically or consciously. I suggest we call it a draw until some time in the future when neurologists might find a physical basis for consciousness. Maybe. ;)
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Re: Abortion

Post by Current » Wed Oct 27, 2010 5:51 pm

TF. wrote:
Current wrote:Just to clarify something, do you accept the following?
A mental process can take place without anyone being conscious of it (consciousness of X happening is distinct from X happening)
Consciousness of consciousness is indistinguishable from consciousness itself. (consciousness is an exception to the rule above)

Can't really make an argument unless I'm sure I get you.
ummm... :thinking:
Yeah. Unconscious/subconscious thoughts can occur automatically without our conscious awareness. (like how our brain regulates heartbeat and recognises the individual letters in a sentence and so on). And yes, I would equate consciousness to a consciousness of consciousness. (which is probably a circular premise but it backs up my disregard for animal sentience :) )
I dunno, all I can say is that it seems to me as if consciousness should be able to exist without consciousness of consciousness. Can't really lay out the details of that.

Then again, perhaps I am simply wrong and the general use of self-aware means something different than my impression of it. But I do maintain that consciousness of consciousness is a relevant moral category, by whichever name it is called. Something that can't think of its thinking cannot hold a desire to continue to think, after all.
It could actually turn out that there is no physical basis for selfawareness or consciousness. Our own consciousness could be illusory since we perceive, quite intimately, the desires, perceptions and thoughts of our minds but cannot be sure that they are generated from ourselves. We are able to think but perhaps, like Hume established back in the day, it is all an automatic process and our notion of the 'self' is an illusion. But that removes the issue of whether animals are sentient because even sentience and self-awareness are automatic functions. And now it's even more complicated. Oh dear.
Sounds like behaviourism. Though, I wonder, how is it that consciousness can be illusory at all, what is it that is undergoing the illusion? Are you saying that you believe you can be not-conscious yet believe you are, but you can't be conscious and not realise it?

It sounds like the opposite of the usual way things work. Normally, "idea of [X]" can exist given [not-X], but not without the ability to have ideas.
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Re: Abortion

Post by TF. » Wed Oct 27, 2010 6:35 pm

Current wrote:I dunno, all I can say is that it seems to me as if consciousness should be able to exist without consciousness of consciousness. Can't really lay out the details of that.
It is a fairly dodgy assumption that it can't exist. If I think of a decent reason why it can't I'll let you know. *partial surrender* :(

Current wrote:Sounds like behaviourism. Though, I wonder, how is it that consciousness can be illusory at all, what is it that is undergoing the illusion? Are you saying that you believe you can be not-conscious yet believe you are, but you can't be conscious and not realise it?
I've been grappling with this idea for a while. Maybe the belief that you are is an automatic perception and not truly derived from your consciousness. Again, I don't have a definitive solution or reason for this. I do know that Hume explains that a consciousness need not exist since perceptions could just exist as a loose collection that are only attributed to a single self by language and understanding, but I can't remember the mechanics of it. :thinking:
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Re: Abortion

Post by Current » Wed Oct 27, 2010 8:42 pm

From what I can find of Hume, he endorsed something called bundle theory of the self, which essentially argues that there is no substantive self, only perceptions rapidly succeeding one another. That is, there is not so much a "self" as a chain or bundle of perceptive states that have no underlying property in common, but experience being part of the same person. There, I agree with him, I sort of thought of that one independently some months (years?) ago. But it still seems to me that he agrees that there is consciousness, that something is perceiving those, um, perceptions. Just that the something need not be a self. Maybe a self-reflecting mechanism with no individual properties beyond the brain it appears in? I dunno, this is the part that really confuses me about consciousness and I don't want to start ascribing my own half-baked ideas to Hume.

There's apparently a book out there called Hume's Theory of Consciousness which, one presumes, would help clarify the matter of Hume's ideas on the subject, but I haven't read it.

And it would seem we have deviated from the thread topic quite a bit....
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Re: Abortion

Post by TF. » Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:08 am

That's the one all right. It's supposed to be a direct response to John Locke's old fashioned ideas of the self, and it works pretty well.

But it does make the whole idea of consciousness even less tanglible. And yes, this has almost nothing to do with abortion.
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Re: Abortion

Post by Tachi » Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:26 pm

Tobias_Marco wrote:I think it could only possably be ok if someone was raped.
I agree with this. There is no reason to punish the mother by forcing her to carry the child for 9 months. She has been through enough already. She should not have to continue to pay for something someone else did. Rape is painful enough, she shouldn't have to go through the pain of giving birth also. There's to many things that continue the punishment of being the victim of a rape if you're pregnant. For one, the amount of money that people burn through due to excessive munchies for totally off the wall random foods. An attempt at a sad dry joke, though I'm not entirely sure if anyone will laugh. :wall: I'm not well versed in humor, but I do try!

Back on track. There's also the cases where the fetus is in a location that if allowed to continue growing, would kill both the mother and the child. Which would be better in that situation? Allow the fetus to grow and allow two lives to be lost? Or abort and give the mother a chance at having another child later? I say the latter.

Humans and dolphins both have sex for pleasure, so you can't just assume that one WANTS a child while having sex. People also need to keep that bit in mind. Though at the same time, it is wrong to attempt to use abortion as a form of contraceptive. THAT is what I object to. I believe that was used in California by (um I don't know if there's a politically correct term...) those who are paid for their "services"? While no contraception is 100% guarantee, you also shouldn't just assume it will fail. Also should not then resort to abortion due to lack of attention to basic preventative measures.

In the end a woman's body belongs only to her. She should be able to choose what to do with it. If she fails to use contraception and gets pregnant as a result, she should LEARN from that and not repeat that mistake. But she should be able to choose for herself and learn for herself.

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Re: Abortion

Post by TF. » Fri Nov 05, 2010 9:53 pm

Which is more important, the mother's well being or the child's potential life in poverty? The mother's relief from a sexual assault and unwanted pregnancy or the child's dignity? Lack of pain or pleasure?

I doubt that there's a universal solution to the questions of abortion- though I do disagree with anyone knowingly (or negligently) getting pregnant and then going for it.

This could even be referred to the 'Utilitarianism' or 'Are the animorphs good...' threads.
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Re: Abortion

Post by Tachi » Sat Nov 06, 2010 12:41 pm

TF. wrote:Which is more important, the mother's well being or the child's potential life in poverty? The mother's relief from a sexual assault and unwanted pregnancy or the child's dignity? Lack of pain or pleasure?

I doubt that there's a universal solution to the questions of abortion- though I do disagree with anyone knowingly (or negligently) getting pregnant and then going for it.

This could even be referred to the 'Utilitarianism' or 'Are the animorphs good...' threads.
Random story time,
I was at a bar and talking with some people about movies a while back and we got onto the topic of a horror flick that came out with a director's cut in it. The rape scene was the only thing that was dragged out if I recall. It was about 10 min. of rape for a movie. (I don't recall the name, but it was the one with a mother and father who find out their daughter was rapped and almost the victim of murder before she managed to sneak back home. Her father was a doctor and managed to save her life. But before they could go back in town due to weather, they killed their daughter's rapist and would-be murderer) This whole thing brought up an interesting convo. between people in the group. The guys said they didn't see what the problem with the scene was. The females stood up and said that nobody can understand how entirely embarrassing and PERSONAL something like that can be. Just watching a scene like that for a female is hard because we know EXACTLY what it would feel like. It's hard to relate for others who don't have that same possibility of weakness. Needless to say after a while the guys left with guys and the chicks left with the other chicks that night. Heads needed to cool down.

Forcing a woman to go through more indignity than she already went through is a crime in my opinion. When my mother was seventeen and going to school still, she was raped. Except she chose to go through the pregnancy and give the baby up for adoption. She named him Joseph before they took him away. I didn't learn about his existence till I was a sophomore in high school. Not everybody is strong enough to go through that nine months of continued humiliation and they shouldn't be forced to either. That's why it should be choice. People know their limits better than somebody across the country in the government does.

"Which is more important, the mother's well being or the child's potential life in poverty?" I grew up in a house that had a cracked foundation and my bedroom was in the basement. We had two to three inch mushrooms growing out of the carpeting most of the time due to the moisture (now you know why some of my books are missing from my Animorphs series... mold). That's just one problem with the house. I honestly say the well being of the mother is more important. She may get on her feet later to be able to support a child. A child in poverty is no way to live. People may try to do it all the time, but it's nothing somebody should have to be forced through. Though I may be speaking to much from personal experience. I resent my mother for not pulling her head out of her butt and going to college to support her kids better. She may have done her best, but the kids (myself and my brother) didn't exactly end up better for it.

But yes, I agree. There is no SINGLE answer to the problem. Can't say "yes" across the board but also can't say "no" across the board either.

Edit: Sorry for constantly having novel length responses/posts. I see most other people around the boards giving three sentence responses and I think I've been trained by my english classes to drag things out entirely to long. I do apologize for that! :oops:

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Re: Abortion

Post by TF. » Sat Nov 06, 2010 9:42 pm

Tachi wrote:Sorry for constantly having novel length responses/posts. I see most other people around the boards giving three sentence responses and I think I've been trained by my english classes to drag things out entirely to long. I do apologize for that! :oops:
So far, I'm pretty sure you've got nothing on the rantings of capnnerefir and some others- even me on the topic of Cassie. I wouldn't worry about post length until you reach about 3000 words. ;)
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Re: Abortion

Post by Current » Mon Nov 08, 2010 2:53 pm

Tachi wrote: Though at the same time, it is wrong to attempt to use abortion as a form of contraceptive. THAT is what I object to.
Ethically wrong or pragmatically wrong?
Surely abortion in lieu of other birth control is a bad idea, it's dangerous and expensive, and for most people emotionally traumatic. But is it somehow morally worse than abortion in the case of, say, broken condom?
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