An interesting article

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....about the Rowland case in Salt Lake City--you know, the one where the mother refused a c-section because she didn't want the scars? Anyway, here's the link: When Choice Becomes Tyranny.

It's interesting, because the author says he is a pro-CHOICE law professor.

Here's an excerpt worth reading:

The willingness of pro-choice groups to embrace Rowland reflects their extreme view of abortion as an absolute right in our constitutional system. But in our system, there are no absolute rights; our constitution is based on a balancing of interests.

Even the oldest and most fundamental rights like free speech or religion must yield in some cases to compelling state interests.

Yet, when it comes to reproductive rights, NOW and other groups reject even the most basic limitations --- leaving reproductive rights so sacrosanct that even the most depraved acts by a mother cannot limit her "right to choose."

And here's another:

The decision of NOW and other groups to defend Rowland is only the latest evidence of how far these organizations have moved to the extreme. This month, NOW, the ACLU and Planned Parenthood opposed a parental notice law in Florida as a threat to the right to abortion even though most pro-choice voters support parental notice. Lynn Paltrow, executive director of the National Advocates for Pregnant Women, has declared the charges against Rowland an "assault on motherhood." But the case is no more an assault on motherhood than an embezzlement case is an assault against capitalism.

Even referring to "the twins" or the "babies" has drawn the ire of these groups. Indeed, Paltrow has vehemently objected to any effort "to personify the fetus."

Personify the fetus? Wait a moment, while I go throw up my lunch.

11 Comments

Can anybody argue that we are living in the times where "evil is called good and good is called evil"?

first note that i believe that Rowland is barely human and the fact that PP and NOW are championing her is hardly surprizing. however, i do believe this particular case has the potential to be a frighteningly slippery slope. it must be maneuvered with incredible caution.

Move over. Make room for my lunch.

Mick, I understand some of your concerns I think. And this next rant is not directed at YOU, but at NOW and the like. Begin rant-mode:

But the comment in the article about "not personifying" the fetuses was just beyond the pale. In ANYONE's book--pro-"choice" or pro-life alike, these babies were far into any "viability" criteria anyone could come up with. Even arguing from a pro-"choice" position (and I used to be, pre-Catholicism, a pro-choicer, I'm ashamed to say), many of those choicers of my ex-ilk held to some (somewhat) slippery concept of "viability." These babies apparently met even that somewhat elusive standard. To call them less than people at that point is not even a stand that most people calling themselves pro-choice would take. It just reeks of Nazism or slavery to me. "We will decide who is human and who is not."

The battle for the words is important. And we are too often losing it. Even to the pro-choice group there is, for 99% of them, a point where even they would agree that it's a BABY in there. Though the war cannot be won just by that concession (and some statistics show that even when they admit it's a baby, many women considering abortion will still abort), but without that concession there is nothing to argue ABOUT.

End rant mode.

There are legitimate issues to discuss about what a pregnant mother might be compelled to do, what medical treatments she might be compelled to seek. What she might be compelled NOT to do. I'd like to see the discussion on that topic, too. Because if we as pro-lifers agree that it is a PERSON from the moment of conception, doesn't it have the right to the medical treatment necessary to save its life? It's a hard question.

'Member those joined at the head Muslim babies over in Dallas? They waited more than a month for surgery while the imams went and discussed the issues of whether the surgery could be undertaken--in case the surgery jeopardized the weaker twin's life. I was impressed that the discussion was done FIRST. The parents were willing to wait. Too often that is not the case, and technology rushes on past discussion.

So, the time for discussion is in the here and now, not in the face of a difficult case. But I will find it hard to conceive of a way that what Ms. Rowland did was not criminal in some way. 'Course *I* think it is criminal to give birth to a baby with drugs in his system, regardless of whether you've turned down a c-section to save his brother's life or not.

Whew. Sorry you revved me up, aren't you?

i'm glad someone is gettin revved up about this issue.
here's my fear - who decides what a mother is or is not compelled to do during pregnancy? the church? the state? the medical community? the mother? her spouse? her one night stand?
once we decide who, other than the mother, has a say...what do we do when their say is immoral? for instance, when the doctor tells the mother, "in my expert opinion, this fetus isn't viable. i strongly recommend abortion."

this is a very sticky wicket indeed.
the church actually has some pretty clear guidelines.
let me see if I can find a copy online.
People are tending to forget that this mom eventually did agree to the cesarean - which was apparantly considered necessary since she had been subjected to two prior cesareans.
I just wish I had access to the medical info on this case, because without that we are all spinning our wheels.
the majority of court-ordered cesareans turned out to have been unneeded or unwise (leading to a worse outcome than expected from a vaginal birth), so I am really skeptical about the purported 'facts' here.

I believe it was two weeks later.

Talk about a slippery slope. Once you remove the kids' right to live, there are a lot of things that are plausable to order of the mother for "health reasons".

Fair is foul and foul is fair.
Hover through the fog and filthy air..

ain't that the truth?

Mick, you said above:

"once we decide who, other than the mother, has a say...what do we do when their say is immoral? for instance, when the doctor tells the mother, "in my expert opinion, this fetus isn't viable. i strongly recommend abortion."

Understood--but isn't it that "it's always up to the mother to decide" thing that got us into the abortion mess??????

But with abortion we Catholics know it's never up to anyone to decide to directly kill the baby. Following a certain course to avoid predicted harm to the baby is something that demands a decision to be made, a line to be drawn about acceptable risk in individual cases -- with abortion the line is clear in every case.

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This page contains a single entry by MamaT published on March 22, 2004 3:01 PM.

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