05 February, 2010

A "Silent Scream"

If you hold to the view that an abortion is not the killing of any innocent life, I invite you to watch this short movie that was produced by Dr. Bernard Nathanson.

I warn you that it is an EXTREMELY graphic presentation of the abortion of an 11 week old pre-born child, viewed through ultrasound imagery. I do not know how anyone can view this film and hold that abortion is little more than a woman's right to make decisions for her own body.

Take the challenge - watch the movie, and share your thoughts below.

You can reach the movie site by clicking here or on the title of this post.

19 comments:

  1. Certainly a dramatic video depiction of a late 1st trimester suction abortion. I would never argue that it isn't the killing of a live being. I would never argue that abortion is not a serious undertaking or that the it should be undertaken without serious consideration. Hopefully, at some point, the societal punishment heaped upon women who become pregnant without the traditional societal sanctions, largely at the urging of organized religion, will cease and abortion will become rare, maybe even unnecesary, except in cases of medical catastrophy.

    I've already made known to you my feeling concerning the oppression that organized religion places upon people in an attempt to keep them docile and under control and that this oppression has been especially brutal towards women.

    Many of these brutal practices have been stopped over time but not before the Church fought with every vile maneuver in their power to maintain them.

    By virtue of repeated acts of foul ignomy over hundreds of years, the church has lost all credibility on the issue of women's reproductive rights. Members of the church routinely ignore the churches teaching in this area. Parents teach it to their children, just like they teach them to never be alone with a priest and rightly so.

    The church is attempting to regain some small measure of validity for itself by making a last push against abortion, which is the easiest of women's recently won rights to rail against. They will never be able to push back the clock against all they have lost but a victory here would allow them to save a small amount of face. In reality, the old, self loathing, closeted Gay men who make up the priesthood of the Catholic Church could care less about abortion.

    Eventually, the people will take back their church and all of its functions will be carried out by those who are part of the church and not above it. People with normal, fulfilling sexuality, who interact with all of their brothers and sisters in the church on the basis of equality and inclusion.

    Someday a woman will be Pope. If she wants to be Gay married, that will be OK. If she wants to have a baby, that will be OK too.

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  2. I saw this short movie some time ago last year. It left me with a sick feeling inside me.

    I never had an abortion. Nobody ever spoke to me about their abortion personally.

    Fr. Tim....about abortion, I know you may pray, do sacrifices, and encourage others to do the same.

    Father Tim, what else can you as a priest do to stop females from having abortions? What would you like to see done to females who wants and had abortion(s)? What would you advise people especially Catholics do? Do you have a realistic platform/plans in place that would encourage females not to seek abortion(s)?

    Fr.Tim, Would you like to see this happened to females/women & girls? This is a quote from a Catholic pro-lifer called Andy:

    Andy.."I believe that a law should be passed to protect the rights of unborn babies, and if a woman requires an abortion on medical grounds or who has been raped then this should be decided with all the facts by a judge, if an abortion is required for any other reason other than the two reasons above than this should be deemed as unlawful and any woman having an abortion or doctor performing it outside of these legal guidelines must be charged with murder."
    **************************************
    It doesn't matter which way one looks at the abortion issue, it is so sad and tragic.

    Lina

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  3. Lina: I do not believe that abortions should be legal in Canada or anywhere else. For me, it is the killing of an innocent life.

    Do I think that women who have abortions should be charged with murder? No, I think that goes way too far. Women who become pregnant and do not wish to raise the child should be encouraged to birth the child and then place it for adoption. There are literally thousands of couples in Canada who want to conceive but cannot and would give almost anything for the chance to adopt an infant.

    You ask what a priest can do? I believe that we should:

    1. preach and witnesses to the truth about abortion: that it is the killing of an innocent life.

    2. work to ensure that the social services necessary to support a pregnant woman exist from coast to coast to coast.

    3. PRAY, PRAY, PRAY for women who feel trapped in a pregnancy so that they will find the grace to not kill their unborn child.

    You are certainly right in saying that no matter how one looks at the abortion issue, it is sad and tragic for all concerned, especially the for the life that is snuffed out before it has a chance.

    Fr. Tim

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  4. "I do not believe that abortions should be legal in Canada or anywhere else. For me, it is the killing of an innocent life."

    That's all well and good for you. But others do not share your feelings. The issue now becomes one of whose feelings are more important -- mine or yours? Let's go back to basics and first ask, "Whose body is pregnant and how does she feel about it?"

    No one is saying that a pregnant woman must have an abortion. But if she chooses to do so -- for whatever reason, why do you argue?

    Insisting on this point of view is nothing more than trying to force one person's "morality" (another term I have some problem deciphering adequately) onto another, who does not share the same definition of "morality."

    My body, my choice. Your body, your choice. No one else's decision.

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  5. Lady Janus,

    Fr. Tim made very good points, yes, pray, pray, help females with options etc..

    Lady Janus, you made several statements that many people agree with. Nevertheless, many people are afraid to say so out loud especially many Christians/Catholics ...Because they are afraid of the repercussions from people like Father Tim and some very radical or I should say very passionate driven people in the pro-life movement and other anti-choice groups.

    Lots of folks do not share the same beliefs and I am alright with that. I for one believe you may have 10 females who had an abortion and God is the only one that knows the situation thoroughly and will deal with each person in a way that is far better than any person here on earth, that includes Fr.Tim, his brother priests and our Pope Benedict with his all male entourage.

    Before anybody is ready to jump in and start saying to me; 'you are a feminist, you are pro-abortion, a person with no heart', not a true Catholic etc.., oh please, do not play that deflection card with me. There are many feminist groups that share the same belief and goals as Fr. Tim, his brother priests and the pro-life movement.

    I am a cradle Catholic, I will take FULL responsibility for my actions and sins. I trust in God and God's wisdom knows way more beyond the human hierarchy of the Holy Roman Catholic Church.

    I never had an abortion. I am bless not to have been in a situation like some females are, in facing and dealing with the dilemma of abortion.

    I am sure many abortions can be avoided that is a given fact.

    To face the termination of a pregnancy for any women/young girls and even little girls is a tough one. Some people seem to think,...whoever has an abortion it's like having a fun day at the local mall and enjoying getting one's hair and nails done. That is so presumptuous and so crass.

    I am glad to exercise my right to vote and not to be afraid where I mark my x without being intimidated by a clergy or like some people yelling to females, 'I regret my abortion, don't kill your baby, you are a murderer!...when all the while the poor woman is going in the medical building for a pap test and a mammogram'.

    I do not like abortions but the bottom line is, if a decision needs to be made to have an abortion, like it or not. The women comes first and God in all His wisdom and mercy and compassion will see to the care for all the unborn, that were not given a chance to life here on earth. This same God will also include His wisdom, mercy and compassion to all females for whatever reason they did not want to become mothers.

    I believe Jesus died, rose from the dead for everybody not for a special group. God has the final say, thank-you Jesus! It is not me.

    No need to be discourage for justice for the unborn. God is in controlled, and these little martyrs as I see them will not be forgotten by God even though these unborn babies seem to come across unimportant and forgotten in the eyes of so many here on earth.

    Finally, I will let this person's statement speak for itself what numerous people think and say about the abortion issue:

    "I will politely say (females)women/girls should not have abortions.
    I will strongly oppose you and everyone else who tries to take that decision out of the hands of(females)women/girls involved and place it in the hands of the government. That is all I am saying"

    Lina

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  6. Lady Janus and Lina, you make sincere and valid points, and I respect you for stating them in a forum where the animus does not run wild. Many on the pro-life side are not patient in listening to these concerns.

    I wish however to make a statement to correct a misunderstanding about the pro-lifers and their motives.

    Many take the view, and as a veteran in the pro-life movement, I concur with this approach, and that is that we do not want to force women to give up the choice to have an abortion. We want only for the girl/women to have access to all information such as ultra-sounds, information about the danger of breast cancer, about the physiological effects it has on women. If the women have access to these vital facts, she may not choose to have an abortion, or she may still chose to go ahead with it.

    The pro-choice side loses all credibility when they use rhetoric from the 60's with no science or research to back them up. That is why this information is so important in making the right "Choices".

    Cliff

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  7. Cliff, access to information and shoving someone's interpretation of information in somebody else's face are two different things.

    It's nice that you think I should have access to an ultrasound. It's not nice if you insist on it after I tell you I have no interest in it. And it's really not nice if you scream into my face about it. Maybe you, personally, don't do that. But others do. And I won't stand for it.

    But as for harking back to the 60's for rhetoric, I'm quite sure that's where the "breast cancer" link came from. It is not true. In other words, it is a lie.

    People can only make such choices for themselves. They cannot make such choices for others. But each choice for each person is the right one. The woman who has an abortion makes the right choice for herself. The woman who remains pregnant and gives birth makes the right choice for herself.

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  8. Lady Janus, 'to Cliff's post about getting access to information to help make the right "Choices"'.

    Your response to Cliff's post is way better than I could have had written. I totally agree with all you said!
    Lina

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  9. Lady Janus, I thought I could give more credit to you, but your recent post shows that you typify the pro-choice side. You are anti-science, anti-research and anti-intellectual, as you have NO interest in facts. The access to information is not shoving it down your throat or screaming in your face, it is simply that FACTS!

    But I see you are not interested in dialogue, only in the same old 60;s rhetoric that has plagued your cause in the past. We will only make progress on this issue when we have open minds, and not selfish desires.

    Cliff

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  10. I am impressed by the dialog you have caused to take place here. It seems to me that the subject is no longer only abortion but personal autonomy and free will as well. I think that most will agree that human persons are endowed with free will and the use of it to exercise personal autonomy.

    You, Fr Tim, believe that we were gifted with free will by an old man in the sky, who both created us and knows all that transpires in our hearts. That's fine, I can work with that.

    You also believe that even though we were endowed with free will by the old man, it is entirely appropriate for an Earthly institution, in his name, to suppress the free will of some human persons because other human persons believe God does not agree on how they wish to exercise it, in certain cases. Is that about how it goes for ya?

    I have problems with that. If God had wanted to be the arbiter of life he would have simply made himself so. He did not. He chose women, according to you, as the vessel by which new life is brought into the World. By virtue of this, do not women then become, irrevocably, the arbiters of when and under what conditions that new life emerges among us? I think it does. If God had wanted it otherwise, he would have made it otherwise. If God wants to reveal his desires to pregnant women, he can do that. If you feel that you are moved by God to be the revelator of his desires for others, well, you are free to express yourself. Remember that by doing so, you are also telling us that you think God is not adequate in personal communication skills. I think somebody may be lacking skills but it's not him.

    The difference between you and some others is that you believe you have the right to speak for God and to act as his surrogate directly to chastise, coerce and punish others if they exercise personal autonomy that you feel is in opposition to God's plan.

    I say to you. You have no license from God or anybody else to quash the free will of others, simply because you feel your understanding of the Deity is superior to theirs. God did not grant free will only to those with a certain orientation as to what is right and natural. He gave it to everyone. That's the plan. If you don't like it, take your disapproval to God, not some poor distraught pregnant girl.

    I think what we have here, between you and the old man in the sky, is a failure to communicate. Somebody needs to get their mind right, Fr Tim, and it's not him.

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  11. Cliff, of course I am pro choice. What else did you think I was?

    But you've spoiled what had promised to be an interesting exchange of views with personal attacks.

    'Bye, Cliff.

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  12. reddog, you sound like a veteran campaigner in the wars of "keep your religion out of my nose." You certainly have an eloquent take on things!

    I do try to keep things on a not-personal level. I don't think it serves anything to make assumptions about people I don't know, like Cliff just did.

    But the fact is that religion is always a very personal thing -- it seems that most people need to define themselves and their relationships to the universe in some way, and for some people, religion is the way to do it. And it is soooo very easy to adopt one that has alreaady been designed and test-run and is out of Beta mode than it is to make each and every little detailed decision for oneself.

    I just wish that, along with religion, people were taught manners, as well. It's not mannerly to go about offering complete strangers a lick of your favorite ice cream cone, so why would they make that offer when it comes to religion?

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  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  14. "...surely we can agree that the rights of being a 'person' under the law precedes the point of a full gestation - ergo the right to existence outweighs the rights of choice."

    No. And the reason is what you stated at the beginning of the comment -- there is a problem in the framing of the question.

    You cannot grant new "rights" over existing rights. The woman has a right to self-determination. Therefore, as the uterus is inescapably within her body, it belongs to her, and she gets to determine when are if it is ever occupied by a fetus.

    People who argue for "fetal rights" have an annoying habit of forgetting that there's already a living person attached to that uterus! If you want to remove choice of the use of that uterus, you must first find a way to remove the uterus from the body of the woman and detach its function and dependence on an unwilling body and mind.

    There must always be choice. If the current choices are unpalatable, the answer is to expand and improve the available choices, not remove existing ones.

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  15. It is no simple matter but a matter of precedence, none the less. The fetus, for most of its existence, cannot maintain life force without the active participation of its mother. The mother does not require the fetus in order to thrive. The Mother may in fact decide that the continuance of fetal development impedes her ability to survive. In this situation the Mother has control, not the fetus.

    When you presume to withdraw the exercise of freewill from the mother, in favor of the life of the fetus you impose upon her something which can never be the prerogative of another.

    I'm not saying I don't understand why you would want to do such a thing. I'm not saying that your motives are not honorable. I'm saying it's not allowed. It's not your place. It's the backdoor to tyranny of Man in the name of God and counter to the way in which we were created.

    Once again, this is not just about abortion and the right to life. This goes to the very heart of civilization and in what light we choose to regard those of different, gender, race, culture, religion and life choice.

    You bring among us a bag and say, "Within this bag is truth enough to suffice but to get it you must accept all of its contents."

    I recoil from your mixed bag in fear and loathing. You may keep your bag and all it contains for yourself and we will live together in peace but if you attempt to force its contents upon me, I will fight you.

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  16. Reddog: Thank you for the compliment for the blog. 

May I suggest that the problem is really a question of how the argument is framed.
    Your position is rooted solely in the capacity of a person to effect that which they would choose. This personal utilitarian mindset will ultimately support the conclusion you desire.

Understand, I admit to the same sin. However this still leaves the both schools as equals in contesting the understanding of what is “right,” “legal” or “lawful” for any human. If we can bring those rights means "into the womb" so to speak, then we have pierced the veil of choice with a wisdom gleaned from the ages. We have brought human rights in defense of a ‘person‘ pre-born in the womb.

This approaches the question from its most primordial level, that being the sovereign right existence. Thus it can logically and rationally be argued that the right to life super-cedes the right of choice.
    Abortion rights have legally been founded upon a persons right to privacy. Justice Harry Blackmun, asserted that the "right of privacy, whether it be founded in the concept of personal liberty and restrictions upon state action, or, rights of people, it is broad enough to encompass a woman's decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy. At what point does ‘privacy’ yield to the right to “life/personhood”?
    Again I assert by way of summary; if the right to existence can be established by the litmus test of viability (a human who can breathe and survive independent of its mother, even if needing intensive medical pre-natal care), how can the right of choice be measured as superior to the right to life. It’s like that old folk wisdom: when the chicken suggested a breakfast of bacon and eggs to the pig. “No thanks” replies the pig “the price is too rich for me.” “For you to prepare such breakfast” he continued, “is a ‘choice.’ It requires a ‘real commitment’ from me!”) For every moment closer to the point of conception a human comes into existence, is a victory for all humans
    Thus even if I concede the question prior to viability, we can agree that there is merit in promoting the rights of being a 'person under the law’ that precedes full gestation? Is it possible to agree with this case? Does looking at this question from this perspective stand up to the conclusions that I am drawing from it?
    The right to privacy does have its limits. We cannot conspire to commit a criminal act for example, expecting that somehow our right to privacy protects us. If we look at the question from the other side - from the pro-choice perspective, can it not be also argued that it merits being subject to the triage standards of how we spend our limited health care dollars, especially in the face of future threatened cuts to government revenue in general. Why should state pay for a fully elective medical procedure ones own body simply because it is desired? If I want to have my left kidney or my appendix removed for no reason other than because I desire it (the legal justification for abortion as practiced in western countries today)?
    BELIEVE ME, I BESEECH YOU!!! I intend no insult to feminists or feminism. I honestly search for language that can define that which I intuit with such clarity but find so complicated to explain. Working through the restricted window of this comments wind doesn’t aid in making editing easier either. I sincerely hope that what I have written will be understood as nothing more than a frank exchange of ideas and concepts in the terms and language common to us as citizens of the 21st century.
    If we strip aside the emotional rhetoric from each side, can we agree at least that those who hold to a pro-life argument do so upon a solid, rational base; equal in form and merit to the argument of choice, allowing that one might not agree with its conclusions? Does it not deserves equal consideration as a means of rational and legal ordering our society?

I hope everyone feels free to respond.



    Fr. Tim

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  17. Lady Janus, you are very adept at sidestepping any meaningful debate, as you probably realize that in an intellectual discourse you would have a difficult time defending your position. But of course I understand your attempt at retreat because Science, research and technology fully support that life begins at conception.

    I would wish you would be more willing to participate as withdrawing only causes polarization, and that is something that should not happen in a free country such as Canada.

    Cliff

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  18. Reddog: You state that you would "fight" me over this issue. I have no problem accepting the challenge. All that I have ever wanted this blog to be was a place where these questions can be tested and debated, using the tools of logic and law, rhetoric philosophy/creed and reason.

    I choose not to take offense at anything that is proposed to me and to believe any argument is offered with conviction and charity to the truth. I ask the same in reading my posts.

    There are precious few places, real or virtual, where people can 'meet' over a hot cup of coffee or tea, and have a civil discussion about something other than opinions about "Avatar" or some other tedious details of the latest TV offering. I am sincere in my invitation to 'pull a chair, grab your beverage of choice and join the conversation. I live by the standards that I ask of you. I have shared much of who I am (and what I believe) on a variety of subjects. I welcome any such civil contribution, irrespective of your beliefs. If my faith cannot stand when confronts by opposing creeds, then it serves me not. I simply have the confidence of my convictions to hold my own in creatively spending some time together.

    Thank you for your past and future contributions.

    Fr. Tim

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  19. Thank you, Tim, for putting up with my belligerence and bombast. Perhaps like the red hair and sloping brow, they are remnant of Neanderthal heritage.

    I'll do what I can to keep the club in the coat closet.

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