On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
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15-07-2013, 12:55 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
(15-07-2013 12:41 PM)Escape Artist Wrote:  
(15-07-2013 12:23 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  Being pro-choice is not being pro-abortion. It means that you'd leave the decision to the individual to decide and you stay out of it.

This probably belongs in the political section or maybe health. I'm not sure it really belongs in the Personal issues and Support section -- unless I have missed something -- which is entirely possible.

You haven't missed anything. This isn't something I'm personally struggling with, as in, I'm not dealing with abortion myself nor do I know of anyone with whom I'm personally acquainted that is considering an abortion. It's just a mindset I'm struggling with and I'm trying to find my own stance by hearing more from you guys on how y'all arrived at your own particular stance.

This section is geared more for "support" and is anti even respectful debate. If you were struggling with this question on a personal level -- that would be different and appropriate. I would ask a mod move it to an area more appropriate.


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15-07-2013, 01:02 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
(15-07-2013 12:29 PM)Escape Artist Wrote:  
(15-07-2013 09:26 AM)Logica Humano Wrote:  You are certainly not pro-life. Unless one is an absolute pacifist, no one is pro-life. If you are against abortion, you are either pro-natal or anti-choice.

Then what, precisely, have you got against abortions? Ninety-eight percent of abortions occur before brain waves are emitted. The latter two percent, which occur during the second trimester, are typically performed as a result of threatening medical problems.

So it's more of a term thing. Gotcha.

Anyway, I guess from what I had read, there was no clear way of knowing when exactly the unborn could perceive pain, or even that brain waves could be detected in these unborn. But that does make me feel better, though I don't know enough about brain activity to feel 100% better.

This is most likely a VERY stupid question, but I'm guessing that the start of brain waves is like the signal of the brain being "on"? In the sense that it can perceive pain, etc.? Is there never a time that the brain could in fact perceive pain but not emit brain waves? Again, I apologize for my lack of knowledge in this area.

(15-07-2013 10:47 AM)Hafnof Wrote:  In normal political discourse "pro life" = legislation to restrict or eliminate legal access to abortion, while "pro choice" = the abolition of such legislation. I think the evidence is that legislation to restrict abortion is consistently detrimental to the health and wellbeing of women and their children.

"pro choice" is not the same as saying that abortion is wonderful, or that finding yourself in the position of an unwanted pregnancy you would likely choose abortion. It just means getting government out of the way and letting women choose for themselves.

I don't like abortion, but I'm pro-choice.

Again, I guess I've had a severe misunderstanding of the terms thus far. In Christian-speak, "pro-choice" was synonymous with advocating murder or loving the slaughter of babies - it was a very loaded term and I guess I'm still carrying some of that around.

I do believe that women should be able to choose. I hate when others try and tell me what to do or how to run my life, so how could I trespass on someone else's choices? So I guess we're alike in that I don't care for abortion, but I don't want to limit someone else's choices.

(15-07-2013 10:59 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  Which point, exactly, in the long complex process of "sperm meeting egg" do you think an ongoing biochemical process becomes a human being ?
When exactly does it stop being "potential" human life", and "actual" human life ? Is a clump of cells with no neural tube, and no brain a human "person" ?

That's the question I struggle with, hence the post.

But, because I believe that the brain is what makes us who we are, is how we experience life, then if I knew exactly when the brain came to a point of being able to perceive pain (there's a theme here, I guess) then I could wholeheartedly agree, or rather - feel at peace - with abortions performed before that time. After that point, I would argue that they should not be done unless the mother's health is in danger.

Then all you need to do is study some Embrology. The answers are not that difficult, and it CERTAINLY is not when "sperm meets egg".

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15-07-2013, 01:13 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
(15-07-2013 01:02 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  Then all you need to do is study some Embrology. The answers are not that difficult, and it CERTAINLY is not when "sperm meets egg".

Any books you might recommend on the subject? Thanks!

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15-07-2013, 01:15 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
(15-07-2013 01:13 PM)Escape Artist Wrote:  
(15-07-2013 01:02 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  Then all you need to do is study some Embrology. The answers are not that difficult, and it CERTAINLY is not when "sperm meets egg".

Any books you might recommend on the subject? Thanks!

Unfortunately that depends - what background do you have in science(s)?

I don't know if there'd be a good review for popular audiences out there, but you can pretty much never go wrong with a solid first or second year university text for a wide introduction - and that'll be assuming no more than a good high school base and a will to learn.

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15-07-2013, 01:25 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
Pain signals must be perceived by the brain to actually be perceived as pain. Nerves without a brain do not cause pain as there is nothing to process the signal.

But you still don't know what parts of the brain is activated when the first sign of activity appears, it stands to reason that not all parts are activated at once, or, if they all are, none of them are working at full capacity.

Isn't there research on this?

Then you have the question still, at what time is an embryo a human? Everything with a central nervous system feels the same pain. At what point is a human embryo different from a mouse embryo?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Embryo

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15-07-2013, 01:26 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
(15-07-2013 12:29 PM)Escape Artist Wrote:  Anyway, I guess from what I had read, there was no clear way of knowing when exactly the unborn could perceive pain, or even that brain waves could be detected in these unborn. But that does make me feel better, though I don't know enough about brain activity to feel 100% better.

There are extremely clear indications of when brain waves are emitted. That's how abortion clinics can legally provide abortions. Second trimester abortions are almost exclusive to life-threatening medical complications because of that.

(15-07-2013 12:29 PM)Escape Artist Wrote:  This is most likely a VERY stupid question, but I'm guessing that the start of brain waves is like the signal of the brain being "on"? In the sense that it can perceive pain, etc.? Is there never a time that the brain could in fact perceive pain but not emit brain waves? Again, I apologize for my lack of knowledge in this area.

We define death by the absence of brain activity, so we clearly define life as the presence of brain activity.

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15-07-2013, 01:37 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
(15-07-2013 01:25 PM)Dom Wrote:  Pain signals must be perceived by the brain to actually be perceived as pain. Nerves without a brain do not cause pain as there is nothing to process the signal.

But you still don't know what parts of the brain is activated when the first sign of activity appears, it stands to reason that not all parts are activated at once, or, if they all are, none of them are working at full capacity.

Isn't there research on this?

Then you have the question still, at what time is an embryo a human? Everything with a central nervous system feels the same pain. At what point is a human embryo different from a mouse embryo?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Embryo

Exactly. And "unprocessed reflexes" are not pain.

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15-07-2013, 01:53 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
(15-07-2013 01:13 PM)Escape Artist Wrote:  
(15-07-2013 01:02 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  Then all you need to do is study some Embrology. The answers are not that difficult, and it CERTAINLY is not when "sperm meets egg".

Any books you might recommend on the subject? Thanks!

Not exactly. It depends on how much Biology and Chemistry you've had. http://www.openculture.com/biology_free_courses
There are a number of free online Biology courses, and in them there are likely intro to Embryology sections. Otherwise as cjlr says, any college intro text would be fine. Also any Anatomy and Physiology course (text), usually has a chapter or two on the subject. I think many colleges and universities use Kenneth Saladin's A and P textbook.

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15-07-2013, 01:55 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
(15-07-2013 01:15 PM)cjlr Wrote:  Unfortunately that depends - what background do you have in science(s)?

A blank one, lol. Other than what little I might have absorbed in high school from our woefully-inept science teachers, I'm afraid the rest of it was blocked out because my fingers were planted firmly in my ears. I very much bought into the "Science is evil" mentality that my church taught.

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15-07-2013, 02:03 PM
RE: On the fence regarding the abortion issue...
(15-07-2013 01:55 PM)Escape Artist Wrote:  A blank one, lol. Other than what little I might have absorbed in high school from our woefully-inept science teachers, I'm afraid the rest of it was blocked out because my fingers were planted firmly in my ears. I very much bought into the "Science is evil" mentality that my church taught.

That is a little more problematic...
Big Grin

I'd try to find a big, thick, first year university text. Start with your Biology 101 (or equivalent), and in all likelihood there'll be an introductory section on embryology and development. That's not like to say much about humans specifically, so if you're still interested, follow it up with an anatomy or phsyiology or human development text.

It's not my field, so I don't have a recommended text or author at hand. You could always check university course webpages? That should have textbooks listed. Come the start of the fall term you could just wander into the bookstore on a nearby campus. They might not sell course textbooks to non-students, but you could make note of titles.

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