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August 21, 2007

Comments

Brian Miles

I think both her letter of endorsement, and her thoughts on her previous work, reveal a woman with a very rich interior life.

Jarnor23

What she is saying, I would have said two years ago. I still feel what she says, especially seeing how some people are conservative first, Catholic second, at least in lip service.

However, there are some deal breakers. I'm gonna throw the Hitler card out right away, because unlike some people think with silly Internet debate rules, the Nazis are one of the best examples of the 20th century of how not to be. So, that said, if someone was for helping the poor, balancing the budget, making the economy strong, and had a great plan, yet supported other positions the Nazis did such as euthanasia, genocide, and fascism, it's kind of a deal breaker. You can't say, "hey, candidate x is great, except for that whole racial hatred thing, but we can get past that" and not be a bit hypocritical.

I also disagree that voting for a third party should the two main ones be unacceptable being wrong. One should vote for a candidate that does not violate these non-negotiable principles. If that means someone lousy wins anyway, at least it wasn't with the help of your vote and you did everything you could legally do.

I really do feel where she's coming from, and once thought a bad war with a person I thought had bad judgment was running it was apt reason to vote against my conscience on another matter. It's not, some things just are not negotiable in the equation. And as horrible as war is, abortion kills a heck of a lot more.

Dan

I think that her position represents a great lack of faith. Just look at the premise. She says that Roe can't be overturned. Who says it can't? God can do what He wants, and if people rise up in faith we certainly can do it with God's help. Anytime someone says can't, and tells you they have faith, you have to stop and question what they mean by faith. I think she is more of the giving up and giving in mentality, but I wouldn't say she has great faith at all.
If her point is that we need to hold our leaders that tell us they are pro-life more accountable, I would second that. But to endorse those who openly oppose her stated position is simply a lie. I think Anne Rice may have some mental problems, or she is simply a plant of the pro-abortion side. But her logic is lacking and her faith seems to have gone missing.
She reminds me of the wolf in Little Red Riding Hood. She looks like grandma, but her teeth give her away.

Jrose

I have to echo Jarnor23's position on this as well. Regardless of qualities that may exist, too much is not negotiable with Hilary. Also, unlike when most use the terms Nazi, Fascist, Commie etc. in a conversation about someone they disagree with, Jarnor23 made a great point about focusing too much on one aspect of a candidates platform.

As Anne Rice stated, the separation of church and state is great and allows religious freedom for all peoples, however, we do not need to erect a wholly new Jeffersonian wall of separation between the two. The concept was never intended to be used in the way it is today. It was intended to keep the nation as a whole from founding a national church and religion, not much more. Mentioning religion and living your own as a candidate does not violate Church/state relations, we need to stop behaving as if it does, it will be detrimental to us all in the end as we cooperate with those who wish to eliminate the voice of the faithful from all political arenas.

SDG

While I think that Anne Rice is profoundly wrong in her reasoning, I appreciate what seems to be her good-faith effort to think through the issues seriously and to act with integrity, including her willingness to potentially alienate a large part of her desired Christian base by voicing what will surely be an unpopular POV. It seems to me that she is sincerely trying to be a faithful, thoughtful Catholic and citizen. She is making some serious mistakes, possibly inevitably, but she is trying.

Of course she is right that rolling back Roe isn't going to "stop abortion" all by itself. What I don't know if she appreciates is that it is an absolutely necessary step in the struggle for life. Yes, as she says, if Roe is overturned, there will be some laws passed enshrining a right to abortion, particularly at the state level. There will also be laws passed at the state level restricting abortion -- laws that currently cannot be passed in spite of popular support and legislative willingness, because they keep getting zapped at the judicial level by Roe.

When the people want good laws, and legislators are willing to pass them, but judges won't let them, something has gone awry, and something needs to be fixed. A move from abortion law by judicial fiat to abortion law by democratic process is a move toward justice.

It is not the case that Roe continues to be the de facto law of the land because Americans don't want to give up abortion rights. Pro-choice sentiment, while firmly entrenched, is not as powerful as that. The reason Roe continues to be the de facto law of the land is that our judicial oligarchy has not thus far seen fit to overturn it.

That needs to end, and for that reason -- among many others -- we need judges who are willing to interpret the Constitution in the light of the hard words on the page rather than the ethereal "prenumbras" and "emanations" that activist judges have for some time divined in the air around it.

unlike some people think with silly Internet debate rules, the Nazis are one of the best examples of the 20th century of how not to be.

FWIW, it should be pointed out that "Godwin's Law" (and the forfeiture rider) acknowledges the possibility of a valid and meaningful comparison to Hitler/Nazis in a handful of very rare circumstances. It is because overapplication of this analogy in comparatively trivial matters weakens its force in those few circumstances where it actually is a valid point of comparison that those who use it where it is not truly warranted are deemed to have lost the debate.

Abortion is one of the few cases where the analogy actually is warranted.

I think that her position represents a great lack of faith. Just look at the premise. She says that Roe can't be overturned. Who says it can't?

I don't think this is a fair reading. She doesn't say Roe can't be overturned. She says she doesn't think this is the solution, since overturning Roe won't convince Americans to give up abortion rights. She doesn't say that the abortion problem can't be solved -- only that she doesn't know how to solve it. But she also says that she believes it can and must be solved. In light of that, I think the accusation of lack of faith is very much unwarranted.

Nick

Here here Jrose, Doesn't anyone know what 'separation of church and state' means? I hate when that line gets thrown around. I guess many 'learned' people would be shocked to hear that the Declaration of Independence even mentions God and the Creator and makes an appeal to the 'Supreme Judge of the world'.

Dan Schaertel

I think that SDG has looked at what it literally being stated and not grasped what Rice means. I think you missed the Little Red Riding Hood thing. "She looks like grandma" Or you could say she looks like she cares.

While she doesn't actually say "can't" she is using the basic hand out condems argument. We can't stop the kids from having sex, so give them condems. We can't stop people from having abortions so give them Hillary. It's the same thing.
I don't think that the reading is unfair at all. I think that you know someone by their fruits. Rice supports an openly pro-abortion candidate. 'nuf said

Mark

On the one hand, who doesn't know that democrats are craven? Ann Rice knows. Doesn't care. One the other hand, who will say, "I vote for republicans because they have limited the number of abortions in the USA to just forty eight million?

These politicians are not doing what is right. Americans need to show discernment, and it's not difficult, but are instead caught up in a dance of death.

Scott W

I remember some commenting on the The English Patient and saying it struck them as a three-hour justification for selling maps to Nazis. Granted, this isn't as long, but it seems like a lot of consequentialist verbiage to justify voting for pro-abortionists whom she, as far as I can tell, have routinely voted for anyway. I guess the good news is that the pro-lifers are generating enough cognitive dissonance about voting for abortionists that there is now a need to offer such rationalizations however convoluted. Concupiscence darkens the intellect once more.

And every time I hear people talking about Roe v. Wade and effectively ending abortion, it sounds like Saruman telling us that against the power of Mordor there can be no victory. Therefore we must join them.

Mike Sieber

Isn't Catholic Democrat an oxymoron?

Kathy

Essentially, she is putting into different words the old argument that we can't legislate social change. Of course we can do so. For one huge example, look at the slavery issue.

Kyl

From a strictly scientific point of view, there is no doubt that the development of an individual human life begins at conception. A four-week embryo has a heartbeat a seven-week embryo has arms and fingers. Look at the pictures (If you don’t want to see the graphic pictures, don’t look at them) http://prolifetraining.com/Abortion-Pictures.htm and here is a video that shows the inhumanity of elective abortion http://prolifetraining.com/Abortion-Video.htm We must be very straight forward about the question “what is the unborn?” and very straight forward in regards to using graphic visuals in a wise way (i.e. giving people the option not to look). Graphic visuals are a standard and highly effective means to good education with other moral issues such as the Civil Rights movement, the Holocaust, and other issues). Every person in the U.S. (and other places) should know that “what is the unborn?” is the key question in the abortion debate. If your child comes up behind you while you’re in your kitchen and asks, “Mommy?Daddy, can I kill this?” what one question must you ask before you can answer his question? You must first ask “What is it? If it’s a cockroach, he can smash it. If it’s the funny looking boy that lives down the street, you are going to have to have a major talk with him. I have taught most of the people I work with the mentioned key question. The unborn has a unique genetic fingerprint. The unborn is a distinct, individual, living human being See T.W. Sadler, Langman’s Embryology, 5th ed. (Philadelphia: W.B. Saunders, 1993) p. 3; Keith L. Moore, The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology (Toronto: B.C. Decker, 1988) p. 2; O’Rahilly, Ronand and Muller, Pabiola, Human Embryology and Teratology, 2nd ed. (New York: Wiley-Liss, 1996) pp. 8, 29. Elective abortion clearly, clearly shouldn’t be allowed (just as slavery of black people shouldn’t be allowed). People must vigorously use education, etc., to contribute to making elective abortion so that it isn’t allowed. There can’t be any “Well…we shouldn’t really try to say or do anything that might make it so that elective abortion wouldn’t be allowed” type statements.

Hillary Clinton

Rice supports an openly pro-abortion candidate.

"I have met thousands and thousands of pro-choice men and women. I have never met anyone who is pro-abortion. Being pro-choice is not being pro-abortion. Being pro-choice is trusting the individual to make the right decision for herself and her family, and not entrusting that decision to anyone wearing the authority of government in any regard."

joann

I think we should be patient with Ms. Rice. She is a new Christian and we can't expect such a dramatic turn in a person's mind and heart that she should become both Christian and Conservative overnight. By sincerely seeking truth she found Christ, and as long as she continues to sincerely seek truth she will eventually find the fullness of His will. A religious conversion is a big thing, yet it may take several years for it to spread into the political realm of a persons being. She's still a "young" Christian, remember?

Kyl

(continued)
(New York: Wiley-Liss, 1996) pp. 8, 29. Elective abortion clearly, clearly shouldn’t be allowed (just as slavery of black people shouldn’t be allowed). People must vigorously use education, etc., to contribute to making elective abortion so that it isn’t allowed. There can’t be any “Well…we shouldn’t really try to say or do anything that might make it so that elective abortion wouldn’t be allowed” type statements.

Leo

As I understand her, Ann Rice argues, in a soft voice, that Democrat policies are more likely to result in fewer abortions because 'demand' would be lower.

I do not think that Americans will give up the legal right to abortion. Should Roe vs Wade be rolled back, Americans will pass other laws to support abortion, or they will find ways to have abortions using new legal and medical terms.
I am also not convinced that all of those advocating anti-abortion positions in the public sphere are necessarily practical or sincere. I have not heard convincing arguments put forth by anti-abortion politicians as to how Americans could be forced to give birth to children that Americans do not want to bear. And more to the point, I have not heard convincing arguments from these anti-abortion politicians as to how we can prevent the horror of abortion right now, given the social situations we have.
... the Democratic Party best reflects ... Gospel ... values ... feeding the hungry, giving drink to the thirsty, clothing the naked, visiting those in prison, and above all, loving one’s neighbors and loving one’s enemies.

I don't think it is an either/or between legislation and other means.

The number of abortions per 1,000 pregnancies varies greatly, even between states/countries which have equally permissive laws. Within the same state/country it varies between women of different financial and other backgrounds. Changing abortion law on its own will at most have a limited effect on saving lives for the reasons given by Rice. Even if abortion were illegal, we would still need de facto protection of those threatened by illegal abortion (whether committed by doctors or others). Restrictive/protective legislation alone is way too little.

The debate has become too polarized. Although there is an irreconcilable conflict of values, not enough effort has been made to find common ground in reducing the 'need' for abortion. Most pro-choicers say they would prefer if abortion was not 'necessary'. Some women become pregnant accidentally, others intended to become pregnant but their circumstances have changed (eg financial, relationship, health, diagnosis of twins or disability). I find it especially tragic when married couples have an abortion for financial reasons.

If we are truly pro-life we will also be willing to pay taxes to ensure effective biological, psychological and moral education; as well as effective financial support, jobs, childcare, healthcare etc. to support families.

Kyl

Sorry about my accidental double post above. The pro-life rationale is clear:

1)Intentionally killing an innocent human person is a moral wrong.
2)Elective abortion is the killing of an innocent human person.
3)Therefore, elective abortion is a moral wrong.

We are not talking about killing cockroaches. The key question is (once more) “what is the unborn?” People shouldn’t be allowed to intentionally kill an innocent human person.

Tom

First make abortions illegal, then birth control illegal, then all that's not Catholic. Is that how it goes?

Mike

"Being pro-choice is trusting the individual to make the right decision for herself and her family, and not entrusting that decision to anyone wearing the authority of government in any regard."

And here I thought that the reason we have laws, any laws, is that we don't trust the individual to make the right decision.

Would the pro-choice crowd be OK with it if I determined that "the right decision" for me and my child was to send him to school with a gun (and without his bike helmet)? Would they trust me in that case?

Ellen

Would the pro-choice crowd be OK with it if I determined that "the right decision" for me and my child was to send him to school with a gun

That would be trusting a child, not an adult.

Vic

Catholic values must be legislated into law. Persons of other religions must conform to the Catholic view or go to prison. Doesn't matter if they and/or their religion doesn't hold a fetus to be a person. They must agree with the Catholic view or go to prison.

MIKE

There was an author from Hollywood
Who said she converted from evil to good
she said "Jesus the Christ is the way of Ms. Rice,
because he has always been misunderstood."
-a work in progress

These types of conversions always remind me of the parable of the sowing of the seeds. It is difficult early in the year in a garden to tell what is a weed and what is the seedling, and how I have to turn to my gardening books to make the right decisions. Pray for all of our brothers and sisters who are lost on the journey and don't know it.

Memphis Aggie

I think there's a couple of issues here echoed by Jarnor23 in the comment "conservative first Catholic second", which I read as classic projection. Throwing the principle of life out to embrace a Democratic candidate is the very definition of being left wing first and Catholic second. Liberation theology is a similar case in point.

Also there is a very common myth perpetuated by the left that those on the left care about the poor and downtrodden more than those on the right. That is false and easily refuted - the left uses the poor and it's false charity welfare while encouraging class envy for political gain. Real solutions that show promise but loosen the political dependency on the left like school choice are blocked.
Obviously there are many individuals with leftist political views whose personal actions are authentically charitable but the policies of high taxation extensive government intrusion and welfare does not equal charity. It's manipulation. Dr. Sowell has a new article on the subject and of course he's a much better communicator than I am. I recommend it.

Jordan Potter

I think SDG and joann said what I would say: Anne Rice is a new Christian, and she's trying. She's seriously mistaken, but she is honestly trying to work through the issues.

First make abortions illegal, then birth control illegal, then all that's not Catholic. Is that how it goes?

Yes, that's basically how it goes. Of course, that's a very long-term project, and it means that this country will eventually have to become a Catholic country, like all peoples of the earth should become. But in the short-term, induced abortion and "birth control" (no birth, no control) will again have to become illegal, which (as you may or may not know) they once were not all that long ago, and in a country that has never been a Catholic country too.

Mark

It doesn't surprise me that a woman who has spent her adult life writing about vampires would endorse Hillary Clinton.

Wesley

She doesn't like vampires any more. She's moved on.

Sarah

"The Church proposes; she imposes nothing. She respects individuals and cultures, and she honors the sanctuary of conscience."

Sarah

"The Church proposes; she imposes nothing. She respects individuals and cultures, and she honors the sanctuary of conscience."

Scott W

"First make abortions illegal, then birth control illegal, then all that's not Catholic. Is that how it goes?"

"Catholic values must be legislated into law. Persons of other religions must conform to the Catholic view or go to prison. Doesn't matter if they and/or their religion doesn't hold a fetus to be a person. They must agree with the Catholic view or go to prison."

There is an error in these two statements--that opposition to abortion is a Catholic or religious preference (the implication also is that it is arbitrary). The fact of the matter is that abortion is wrong by any reasonable standard. That is why there are atheist anti-abortion sites.

Vic said: Persons of other religions must conform to the Catholic view or go to prison.

It is the Catholic view that murder and stealing and fraud are sins. Should we legalise those things just because the Catholic view is that they should be against the law?

Doesn't matter if they and/or their religion doesn't hold a fetus to be a person. They must agree with the Catholic view or go to prison.

There are many people on this earth who think that it is okay to kidnap, murder, torture, or blow up people in the name of their religion. So, it doesn't matter that their religion holds that it is okay to do those evil things: if they do those things and we catch them, they are to be held responsible, whether in the courts or on the battlefield.

Same with killing unborn babies. It doesn't matter what they mistakenly believe, if they believe that it should be legal to do something horrendously evil.

Have you heard of a guy named Michael Vick? You know, in our country dogfighting is illegal, because it's cruel and inhumane towards the dogs (non-persons) and dehumanising to those involved in it. It doesn't matter that some people think there's nothing wrong with watching dogs tear each other to pieces: it's twistedly evil, and it's against the law as it should be.

But we can do to our own unborn babies what we're forbidden to do to non-persons. That's the logic of your position, Vic.

You also may not have noticed that Catholics aren't the only ones who believe that unborn babies are persons and shouldn't be killed.

Jordan Potter

Sorry, forgot to include my name on that post.

John Kasaian

Horrible, just horrible. Every life is s precious thing, too precious for this kind of lip-service. The "Ave Maria" sound track was schmaltzy and quite frankly, insulting.

Kay Cee

"I have met thousands and thousands of pro-choice men and women. I have never met anyone who is pro-abortion. Being pro-choice is not being pro-abortion. Being pro-choice is trusting the individual to make the right decision for herself and her family, and not entrusting that decision to anyone wearing the authority of government in any regard."

There's a question I ask people who claim they're "pro-choice":

A single mother with five children is living on welfare. She discovers she's pregnant. What should she do?

Every "pro-choice" person I've asked this has answered the same way--"She should have an abortion."

Strange how none of them, not a single one, has ever answered "She should make a choice."

They're not "pro-choice." "Pro" indicates what one is in favor of. If they were truly "pro-choice," that is, in favor of choice, they would answer that she should make a choice.

They're pro-abortion.

Penny

The fact of the matter is that abortion is wrong by any reasonable standard.

Not every religion holds a fetus to have the full rights of a person.

BenYachov(Jim Scott 4th)

Well she has revieled acurratly what in the mind of Catholics who continue to vote democrate. I am not convinced by her arguments but she obviously believes what she wrote.

JoAnna
A four-week embryo has a heartbeat a seven-week embryo has arms and fingers.

You need to be careful with your terminology here. An embryo has a heartbeat four weeks after conception.

It's confusing, I know, but the way it's "counted" by medical professionals right now, pregnancy technically begins with the first day of your last menstrual period. Thus, a woman is technically "two weeks pregnant" when she conceives, four weeks pregnant when she has a positive home pregnancy test, six weeks pregnant when a heartbeat becomes visible, etc.

If you say things like, "A four-week-old embryo has a heartbeat," a lot of pro-abortion people will jump on that and claim you don't know what you're talking about.

(I'm nine weeks pregnant, by the way, which is why I've very recently read about the issue with dates and such! I had an abdominal ultrasound when I was almost eight weeks pregnant, and we clearly saw a baby with a beautiful heart beating at 171 beats per minute.)

Lisa

Being Catholic does not mean one is supposed be either Republican or Democrat as if either party is the "right one."

Memphis Aggie

A "fetus" is a genetically distinct demonstrably (again by genetics)human organism that is highly dependent on it's mother for survival. That's scientific fact not religion The only real distinctions between a fetus and a baby are the developmental stage of life (human life without doubt) and the degree of dependence on the mother. A baby can be cared for by someone else but a fetus is wholly dependent on it's birth mother. This Scientific fact. The humanity of the "fetus" is irrefutably real in terms of intrinsic DNA sequences that are novel in each child or pair of twins.

JoAnna

Penny wrote:

Not every religion holds a fetus to have the full rights of a person.

By your logic, not a single Jewish person died during the Holocaust.

At the time, Jewish people weren't considered human under Nazi law. They were classified as "subhuman."

Would you then agree with the assertion that no Jewish people were killed during the Holocaust since they weren't legally considered human beings, and didn't legally have any rights, by the country's lawful regime?

Lisa your right - both parties are flawed. I think that Republicans are less seriously flawed than Democrats.

Ted

The humanity of the "fetus" is irrefutably real in terms of intrinsic DNA sequences that are novel in each child or pair of twins.

To many people, humanity is more than DNA.

AnnonyMouse

" What I have are hopes and dreams and prayers --- that better education will help men and women make responsible reproductive choices, and that abortion will become a morally abhorrent option from which informed Americans will turn away. "

Ok, I have to stop here. This is so sad because this is basically the same thing that Margaret Sanger claimed and we know that she paved the way to abortion on demand.
How sad.

Penny

By your logic, not a single Jewish person died during the Holocaust.

No, it's your logic which is comparing fetuses to Jewish persons. I was referring to fetuses. Not all religions hold a fetus to be on par with an independent human being.

Memphis Aggie

Obviously I believe that humanity in it's complete form (exemplified by Christ) is more than DNA. But I was trying to make a physical scientific argument. Further no one is as complete in their humanity on Christs scale. In order to prevent subjective sliding scales of humanity we need objective measures and DNA is one such measure that allows us to say with certainty that a fetus is human and not ape or elephant or cow.

thomas tucker

I have hopes, dreams, and prayers.
Wow. That's pretty insubstantial and not helpful at all to the poor baby being aborted and thrown into the garbage pail.

Memphis Aggie

Penny

A fetus is a dependent human being , but still human.

JoAnna
No, it's your logic which is comparing fetuses to Jewish persons. I was referring to fetuses. Not all religions hold a fetus to be on par with an independent human being.

And not all legal regimes have had similar standards as to what comprises a human beings. History has deemed the Nazi regime, for example, to be incorrect in their assessment as to what constitutes a human being.

What makes you so sure that YOU'RE right about what comprises a human being? What's your authority to make that judgment?

Mine is the Creator of the world.

JoAnna

Sorry, forgot to close my tag.

Ted

we need objective measures and DNA is one such measure that allows us to say with certainty that a fetus is human and not ape or elephant or cow.

Your need for certainty will not be met by science, which neither declares anything certain nor does it cast itself as the judge of humanity.

Penny

A fetus is a dependent human being , but still human.

That's your view of what's human. Someone else may also say it's human, but that's not to say you and the other person will agree that the fetus has the same rights as another human. In some religions, an unborn human does not have all the rights of a born human.

yellow alert

Possible troll - don't leave bait. Keep to the main subject.

Penny

What makes you so sure that YOU'RE right about what comprises a human being? What's your authority to make that judgment? Mine is the Creator of the world.

Lots of religions claim to be in communication with God. What makes you so sure that YOU'RE special?

Memphis Aggie

I'm a Scientist by profession. We do not absolutely declare certainty I agree. However we frequently state in terms of statistical confidence or from multiple lines of evidence that the probability that x is x is .9999 etc. Some of this definition. There is no doubt in an serious person that the DNA in a fetus is 1) functional 2) human relative to all other organisms by differences of thousands of nucleotides. The probability of a human mother giving birth to anything other than a human child is essentially zero. We can be certain enough to act.

Ted

There is no doubt in an serious person that the DNA in a fetus is 1) functional 2) human relative to all other organisms by differences of thousands of nucleotides.

As long as humanity is more than a bunch of cellular matter, then the line between human and non-human is not determined with any certainty by DNA.

Tom

On that Judgment Day, each of us living in these times will no doubt be asked: How could you have let the innocent killing of 48 million + babies occur during your lifetime? Will it be enough to say: I didn't get an abortion or help another procure one? One knows deep down that we'll all be asked -What did you personally do to bring about an end to this greatest of all human atrocities to this point in history? Did you speak out publicly against abortion? Did you pray the Rosary to end the killing? Did you take part in peaceful, public demonstrations against abortion? If not, why not? [Confession: I have not participated in the annual march in Washington, but feel we should all be doing so, and intend to next time].

I would hate to be in the position of telling our Lord that I voted for anyone whose platform was based in any way on supporting the right to continue to obtain abortions. It is a non-negotiable issue which simply cannot be marginalized or rationalized away as Ms. Rice attempts to do. We should pray for her.

SDG

Hi Ted, er, Art, Q, Elmar, whatever the troll you're calling yourself today.

Scott W

Possible troll - don't leave bait. Keep to the main subject.

Agreed. Kyl posted the pro-life logic. The terms are clear, the propositions true, and the argument valid. Everything else is an attempt at distracting noise.

Bart

People shouldn’t be allowed to intentionally kill an innocent human person.

Does God allow you to do it?

Barbara

In my neighborhood, we call Alice's view, narrishkeit.

Not only is there a second clause to the First Ammendment (...nor shall she prohibit the free exercise thereof), but her assessment of the message of the Gospel is not the exclusive interpretation of the Democratic party. Republicans obviously think theirs is the most compassionate expression.

SDG

Does God allow you to do it?

B'Art, you can change your name, but not the distinct waft of gnostic sensibility that permeates all your empty questions.

In keeping with the spirit of Jimmy's sig rule, perhaps you would be good enough at least to stick to one sig per thread.

Kevin

People shouldn’t be allowed to intentionally kill an innocent human person.

Does God allow you to do it?

--No... He does not.

"Thou shalt not Kill (murder)"

To allow the physical possibility of me killing the mailman is not 'allowing it' in the moral or legal sense --any more than I would allow my children to go play in traffic! Now my saying "do not play in traffic" my not allowing it --may not actually keep them from it --but it has to be said!

So to must it be said--to kill a little child is not to be allowed ...it is murder of the innocent.

Memphis Aggie

Back to the main point. Ms Rice holds political beliefs at odds with those proposed by the Church. I also vary with the Church on some topics: death penalty, validity of the War etc. I asked my priest if it was a sin to believe in the death penalty. He said I needed to be open to hearing the Church teaching, but that this was not dogma and some disagreement was acceptable because the Church's position has changed on this point. My understanding is that the abortion question is much more clear in church teaching and less negotiable.

JoAnna
Lots of religions claim to be in communication with God. What makes you so sure that YOU'RE special?

And this comment shows that you have never read any other post on Jimmy's blog, nor do you know anything about the Catholic faith (or you have some pretty severe misconceptions about it).

Why don't you come over to the forums at Catholic.com and post a thread about this subject there -- I'll gladly answer your question. That way we can keep this combox on-topic. My username there is wanner47.

Bart

To allow the physical possibility of me killing the mailman is not 'allowing it' in the moral or legal sense

If God doesn't allow it in the moral or legal sense, then it's already not allowed in the moral or legal sense.

Scott W

And I am disappointed because our visiting abortion defenders are behind the times. More and more abortionist defenders are recognizing that they can't win with question-of-humanity card. So they concede the point: she's human, she's innocent, but guess what? It's justifiable to kill them in circumstances. This explains the rise of the advocacy of euthanasia (where the humanity and innocence is not in question.) It also explains why the pro-abortion position is weakening: it is a position for the truly hardened and fewer people are willing to follow them into the abyss.

Beau

Amendment V of the Bill of Rights, of the United States of America:

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Now the really important part of that Amendment is where it says "nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law", and I think it's this point that our politicians and judges (and voters!) should really pay attention to.

So, all religion aside, the question of the legality of abortion can be settled by answering one question: When does a human being become a human being?

I have a thought experiment that I like, that I think makes the case that a human being is a human being from the moment of conception. It goes like this (maybe someone can point out flaws?):

Is it OK to end the life of a baby that was born five minutes ago? Would that be "abortion" or "murder". I think most people would conclude that to be murder.

If it's not OK to end the life of a baby that was born five minutes ago, is it OK to end the life of a baby that will be born five minutes from now? Would that be "abortion" or "murder". I think that most people would still conclude that it is murder.

At this point, we've concluded that even though a child is still in the womb, to end it's life CAN be murder. So then, is there a point when we can end it's life and it's NOT murder? For the sake of argument, let's pick an arbitrary time when it's OK. If for example we say that an abortion is OK any time during the first trimester of pregnancy, the question then becomes how do you define the first trimester?

Suppose hypothetically that you knew the exact second of conception, and that you knew that without a shadow of a doubt that the first trimester would end at midnight on a particular day. Is it OK to end the life of the developing fetus at 12:01? By definition, that would be murder. Is it OK to end the life of the developing fetus at 11:59? By definition that would be abortion, but by pointing out a ridiculous scenario, we see the ridiculousness of setting an arbitrary time for when it's OK to have an abortion. You can stretch it to even more ridiculous lengths: What about at 11:59 and 59 seconds? How about 11:59 and 59.99 seconds? You can keep going but at a certain point we have to ask the question, how do we know if we really got the abortion done before midnight?

Of course, the above is hypothetical and always will be because we don't really know the exact moment of conception, and we don't know the exact moment that the first trimester ends. The same above argument works with any arbitrary time. "If the infant could survive on its own outside of the womb it's murder, if not it's abortion". How do we know when it could survive? If we can definitively say that it wouldn't survive before midnight on a particular day, is it OK to have an abortion at 11:59 and 59.99 seconds?

Our law, particularly as it pertains to capital punishment demands that the guilt of the defendant be proved beyond a shadow of a doubt. On the first hand, these unborn children aren't accused of any crime (capital or otherwise). Second, if they were so accused they aren't being given the benefit of a trial. Why should religious beliefs even come into play on the subject of abortion? Why don't we simply point to our constitution and let our laws defend these innocents?

Thanks for letting me rant at length...I'd be interested in hearing about holes in my logic, but to me it seems pretty tight.

SDG

Thanks, B'Art.

Just wondering now... Is it possible that ALL the confused/confusing voices on this thread are one person?

Penny, Sarah, Vic, Tom... Hillary Clinton... is ANY of you NOT B'Art?

Jimi Hahn

Excuse my candor, but AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! This is so unbelievably frustrating to read, I can't imagine any sane or logical person holding positions such as these.

bill912

I noticed how often she wrote "I feel" and only rarely wrote "I think". That would explain the illogic, as feelings don't have IQs.

SDG

Jimi Hahn: Can you be more specific?

Jimi Hahn

"And much as I am horrified by abortion, I am not sure --as a student of history – that Americans should give up the right to abortion." Let's give this (il)logic a test drive. "And much as I am horrified by rape, I am not sure -- as a student of history -- that Americans should give up the right to rape." Ooh, that's a smooth ride--smooth as Bush's acceptance at a NOW rally.

Kevin

If God doesn't allow it in the moral or legal sense, then it's already not allowed in the moral or legal sense.

....hum. Well then I will let 'Planned Parenthood' know that what they are doing is illegal as well....

But seriously -- what I said stands.


Memphis Aggie

Beau your logic works for me. The only way around it is by forcing the definition of a human being to include birth, which is what the Supreme Court has done. If a person is driven enough by their own will they warp the sense of words and ignore logic. Then they wrap their "reasoning" in complex language to hide their illogic and viola! We have Ros vs Wade.

Memphis Aggie

Devastating illustration Jimi

Tim J.

One reason (one) that I can not support any pro-choice candidate is that the pro-choice mindset to me reveals a deep and serious inability to reason and to think logically.

In other words, holding a pro-choice position is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of demonstrating an individual's ability (or willingness) to think.

If a person can't or won't think logically, they don't deserve to run anything, let alone the whole country. Abortion isn't just immoral, it is logically untenable... unsupportable by even the most flimsy rules of evidence, and I don't trust the judgment - on any issue - of anyone who CAN support it.

I used to support abortion "rights", and at the time I couldn't reason my way out of a wet paper bag. I'm glad I wasn't in charge of anything serious.

Jimi Hahn

p.s. What's the deal with using the term "anti-abortion," as opposed to "Pro Life." Why would someone who is allegedly Pro Life use a term which every Pro Lifer I've ever met see as a pejoritive term?

kevin

To quote a friend about the article:

"In a still, quiet voice...she is wrong."

Memphis Aggie

When I was young and foolish, and agnostic, I used to buy into the idea that it was a women's choice and that men had no say in the subject. It was a convenient excuse. I hadn't thought seriously about abortion and it was easier not to.

francis 03

Ms. Rice is right that there's no end in sight to abortion in the United States-- even if they could, only a few states would ban it outright, and even there some few desperate women would seek out the infamous back-alley abortions.

But by simply shrugging her shoulders and saying she doesn't know the answer, she's failing to recognize the true magnitude of the issue-- namely, that probably the most fundamental function of any government is to protect the lives of the human beings within its jurisdiction. If fetuses are human beings, then our government has massively failed to perform this function. This failure is even more catastrophic when the government actually pays for killings, as Hillary Clinton would have it do.

Of course, if the government must protect "human beings" then it must have a way of deciding who is and is not human. Thus, although this may be partially a religious question, it is also an indispensible civic question-- in a way that other religious questions, such as dietary or prayer obligations, are not. So the commenter(s) who think(s) that Catholics shouldn't be able to support laws to protect the lives of the unborn because it's a "religious question" might just as well argue that no person whose religious convictions prohibit murder or theft can ever advocate laws against those actions, because they are subject to religious prohibitions as well.

Having said all this, I also disapprove of the narrowmindedness of equating Catholicism with conservatism. As a wise man (I think it was C.S. Lewis) said, all revealed religions must be conservative dogmatically-- when God tells you something, you don't go messin' with it. But as Ms. Rice points out, the values of the Gospel (feed the hungry, visit the imprisoned, support widows and orphans, etcf.) are in many ways very "liberal," in modern terms. Whether you want the government involved in enacting these values is a prudential question, but whether these things should be done is emphatically not. If abortion (and possibly gay marriage) wasn't an issue, I wouldn't fault anyone who mad the prudential judgment that the citizens of a mostly-Christian nation can most effectively care for the least in their midst by government action, and then concluded that the Democratic Party was best at this.

In fact, even the pro-life argument fits into the classic liberal paradigm of government forcing the strong and wealthy to sacrifice in order to support the weak and needy: compared to her fetus, a pregnant woman is immensely powerful and wealthy.

As I argued above, for government to permit her to hire someone to take the fetus's life is an abdication of duty of the first magnitude, that genuinely threatens the existence of any society that permits it. By failing to recognize this tidal wave that is overwhelming all of Western civilization, Ms. Rice has shrugged her shoulders at the impracticability of building a seawall or levee and has turned to piling sandcastles on the beach instead.

Memphis Aggie

Very nicely stated Francis.

bill912

She's saying, essentially, that we can't be successful. Mother Teresa, on the other hand, said: "God doesn't expect us to be successful; He expects us to be faithful."

Carla

by simply shrugging her shoulders and saying she doesn't know the answer

But she didn't. She said, "if we are to find a solution to the horror of abortion, it will be through the Democratic Party." She's being active in advancing what she believes is the answer.

bill912

Tolkien said the same thing a little differently when he had Galadriel speak of having "fought...the long defeat", which, of course, eventually led to victory.

Michael

Just some comments on the faith of Anne Rice. It is my understanding that she is not Catholic herself and so would not in her own mind even be accountable to Catholic moral teaching. Also to my knowledge, her current literary projects in writing about the life of Jesus draw heavily from gnostic sources (Nag Hammadi library) for material. She is a long way from orthodox Christian belief today though she may end up there before her journey is complete.

In a sense it may be unfortunate that her stature allows her to take the mantle of Christianity and speak as if she is a prophet and perhaps she should be publicly refuted for taking such a stand. However, there ought to be some charity shown or else she may deflect herself from the path in reaction or maybe even worse those who listen to her might find themselves repelled by the nastiness they might perceive in Christians who rightly reject her conclusions.

Laura

It is my understanding that she is not Catholic herself

FYI, she said she returned to the Catholic Church.

T Shaffer

Anne can dance around the issue of life all she wants. She can say that she is seeking a "solution". She can believe that there is some miracle that will come to end the "horror of abortion" but yet she must support Roe v. Wade until such a time comes??? I frankly don't believe her and I think she's being disingenious. Overturning Roe v. Wade will save children's lives, that's a fact. It's as simple as that. Will it save most of them? No, it won't. But it will save some and that's enough for me to support overturning it. She's a typical liberal whose emotions have gotten in front of her ability to reason. Where in her post is the pity and sorrow for the children who are ripped limb from limb every single day in this country??? Doing something to save even one of them is an act of heroism. Anne Rice, shame on you.

Hal

I have struggled with this sort of question myself: for whom to vote in the primary. No realistic presidential candidate on the Democratic side if pro-life. On the Republican side, there is a mix of publicly pro-life and pro-choice candidates. If I vote in the primary for one of the pro-life candidates and he is nominated, does it seal victory for the pro-choice Democrat? It could happen if the pro-life candidates are all much less electable in general. If I vote in the primary for one of the pro-choice Republicans, do I get someone publicly pro-choice, but on record promising to appoint "conservative" judges who might go my way on Roe? What if, come November, all I have is pro-choice options? That's what happened in the last gubernatorial race here. Do I stay home? Vote for myself?

On the other hand, I think Ms. Rice is wrong on the Democrats being better at governing according to Gospel values. She is enamored of the government welfare state and thinks that Iraq was a bad war. I won't argue these points, but the totality of the Democratic platform in the current election cycle doesn't work for me.

For what it's worth, I met Ms. Rice at a book signing for a few seconds. She struck me as alright, though kind of frail and tired that day.

Jimmy Akin

TO THE POSTER MOST RECENTLY CALLING HIM/HERSELF "LAURA" AND "CARLA":

From your IP address I can see that you have been very active in this and other comboxes under a wide variety of pseudonyms, as has already been guessed by other readers.

RULE 21 states: "Commenters in the combox are to use either their real name or a (non-offensive, non-spiteful) handle that distinguishes them from others when posting comments."

Following a suggestion made above, I am hereby issuing an AUTHENTIC INTERPRETATION of this rule: Commenters are to restrict themselves, at least within any single combox thread, to ONE (non-offensive, non-spiteful) handle that NOT ONLY distinguishes them from others but also IDENTIFIES them as one and the same person when they post repeatedly.

Users who post repeatedly within the same combox thread under multiple names may be presumed to be seeking to create an artificial impression of a wide variety of conflicting opinions on multiple sides. This activity will result in the poster being disinvited to participate in the blog.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Laura

Users who post repeatedly within the same combox thread under multiple names may be presumed to be seeking to create the impression of a wide variety of conflicting opinions on multiple sides.

That's the impression the world gives, a wide variety of conflicting opinions on multiple sides.

SDG

That's the impression the world gives, a wide variety of conflicting opinions on multiple sides.

Then there should be no need to stack the deck, or stuff the ballot box, or whatever, with a battery of quick-change secret identities. Should there? Just let the world be itself.

Mark

I wonder if Ms. Vampire, as a student of Vampire history and as someone who is endorsing a Vampire for President, thinks Michael Vick should give up his "right" to torture puppies. After all, how can we be sure that all of those advocating anti-puppy torture positions in the public sphere are necessarily practical or sincere?

Mark

Tom's next post:

"First make puppy torture illegal ... then all that's not Catholic. Is that how it goes?"

Hal

"I wonder if Ms. Vampire, as a student of Vampire history and as someone who is endorsing a Vampire for President..."

Ms. Rice has stopped, as far as I know, writing her vampire fiction. The last book I know of from her was about Christ, and was a decent read I thought. Move on, I think, and stick to the issue of her political statement.

Laura

Just let the world be itself.

I am.

jp

So Hillary,

Are you pro-choice with respect to one's decision to have slaves?

Ed Pie

I think Ms. Rice is wrong on the Democrats being better at governing according to Gospel values.

I think the Democrats have the advantage of a more transparent form of compassion--it's more obvious that you're meeting an immediate need if you give a man a fish than if you stop and teach a man to fish, even if you have to come back and give him another one tomorrow because he can't get one himself.

I think Rice is right about abortion not being ended without the Democratic Party, though--in the sense that it will require Democrats to stop supporting abortion, Republicans not being powerful or numerous enough to do it without help from across the aisle. Is that what she meant?

Memphis Aggie

As much as I disagree with Ms Rice here. Her return to the Church and her authorship of a Christ centered book shows a great deal of improvement and shows an openness to change. Who knows, maybe in time she'll come the rest of way.

Foxfier

JP- Hey, you stole my line... although I was going to say simple murder.

After all, despite all the laws against it, desperate people still see murder as the only possible solution to their problems, and many people take the risk and go outside the law to do it, despite the risks to their lives and freedom. Why what right do we judge that they are wrong? It's not fair of us to force our views on them. We should work to make sure that murder is much safer for the murderers......

Next up necrophilia, cannibalisms, any other perversion you can think of.....

Tim J.

Deception is the refuge of the weak and cowardly. That's about all I need to know about "Laura", or whoever.

Tim J.

JP and Foxfier -

Yeah! Lots of people feel the need to murder... and they are likely already under a great deal of stress... who are WE to make CRIMINALS of all these unfortunate people?

By legalizing murder we can regulate it and keep it in a more controlled environment, making it safer and more sanitary for everyone.

I mean, wouldn't you rather get a nice quick injection than be beaten to death by a blunt instrument? Think about it.

No more back-alley murders!

I suggest that as our protest symbol we adopt a "no" sign over a club or baseball bat of some kind.

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