Recently, while browsing through the groups, I came across a Pro-life group. It has only one member-it's founder, and that got me to thinking...Are there any pro-life atheists out there? And being that most, if not all arguments I've heard against abortions are usually religious in nature, what would be the atheists argument(s) against abortion?

Personally, I am pro-choice. I fully support every womans right to choose.

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Thanks. I got through to the Newsweek article and to your response.

I agree with most of your points. The journalist did not do her homework very well. She made sweeping statements which appeared to be largely based on guesswork.

I fail to see how she could describe Hitchens as a "pro lifer" on the basis of what she quoted. He was clearly in favor of avoiding abortion, not of banning it. He takes the stand taken by the majority of soft-line pro-choicers who believe that unplanned, unwanted, unwise pregancies should be avoided with the use of effective contraceptive methods.

Hitchens includes a method for preventing abortion which would not be accepted by the average "pro-lifer" because it is known to work by releasing an implanted embryo from the uterine wall or by preventing one from implantating itself here. Of course, all hormonal and mechanical methods of birth control do this to a varying extent. It is conceivable that even the Catholic ovulation method could result in an egg being fertilized on its way out of the womb (a problem which is, of course, denied by Catholics who advocate this method.)

Every method of contraception has a failure rate attached to it. The only safe way to avoid an abortion is never to engage in sexual relations at all.

Aside from the fact that the human race would die out if this were implemented on a world wide scale, sexual abstinence is not recommended because it has a documented history of leading to all kinds of human misery. A good sex life is an important part of mental health.

It also functions as a relationship builder and binder - something which has survival use for a species like ourselves who need to stay together for a long time in order to effectively raise our slow developing young.
I've posted the entry "Theocratic or pro-choice: Not much middle ground between them" by Amanda Marcotte more than once now and find it interesting that no one has actually bothered to refute the claims she makes.

While some of her comments made in frustration and an appeal to humor may be offensive, she does bring up some excellent points.
Becky, I agree. Amanda makes many excellent points which appear to be irrefutable. I enjoyed her article immensely.

I mentioned the article's failings in fairness. I was frustrated because I was, in fact, looking for an objective or at least logical "pro-life/anti-choice" argument which had no religious under-pinings. I hear them promised but they are elusive. Likely leads disappear in a puff of smoke.

There was a VERY long discussion which followed. It ended with some anti-choicer behaving extremely offensively.

The same pattern has crept into this site now. I have had lots of professional experience with unstable personalities with a strong and unsavoury drive to dominate. When they lose a sense of being in control they decompensate, disintegrate and spew invective all over the carpet. The anonymity of the web seems to excentuate this. It is very sad.

I think your last paragraph is an excellent summation as to the devolving nature of this 'debate' and thread.

Misogynists will eventually show their true colors the more they talk (rant) and if the right to choice were not so important, it would be comical.

For me, after a certain point is reached (and this is different for everyone, I realize) I refuse to give them the platform they so desperately long for, leaving them to twist in their impotent rage.

I would like to say, that in my opinion, you, George and Becky have been more than fair and patient when confronting the amount of contempt that is on this thread and I commend you all.
The term Pro-life is so misleading. I'm Pro-quality-life, a firm believer in "If you can't feed 'em, don't breed 'em". Being a man I believe I have NO right to be pro-life. It's not my body to make decisions about. Nor should any man be able to tell a woman she can't abort a child because it's 'his'. Being a sperm donor does not a father make. I think every pro-life proponent should be forced to provide, and fully fund, a quality life for a child that was logically destined to be aborted. Unfortunately they would probably raise them as pro-lifers.
Free RU486 for all!
EvilGod Wrote: I think every pro-life proponent should be forced to provide, and fully fund, a quality life for a child that was logically destined to be aborted.

That would be a great idea, EvilGod.

After I had my child, and I lived to bring him up, my Right To Life contact provided me with a basket of baby stuff and then turned tail and ran. She was no-where to be found during the next very hellish 18 months. My baby boy had ADHD and Asperger's and I had various medical problems, including 10 months of excruiating post-herpatic pain as the result of an accident during the emergency Ceasarian.

I choose to have that child for what I consider to be all the right reasons. I wanted to continue with my very accidental conception (less than 1 chance in about 6 million), believed that I had a reasonable chance of looking after the final result properly and was prepared to put up a lot of discomfit in order to get there and do so. It cost me dearly. I have permanent health problems as a result.

The parting remarks from the hospital gynacologist were (in paraphrase): "Well, you've got your little boy now but don't EVER do it again. If you turn up to this hospital pregnant again we will shoot you on sight. You would have problems from the very beginning, you would probably die and your fetus would definitely die. You would tie up hospital resources which are better given to people with problems that could not have been avoided. Be responsible and have your tubes tied."

I followed the doctor's tubal advice in spite of the RTL woman's attempts to convince me that such a course of action was immoral because it was preventing the conception of another new life. My stance was that it would be highly immoral to put the mental and physical well-being of my new born at risk by inviting a pointless death.

The whole incident highlighted the cruelty behind the RTL position.
I believe in quality of life. But I also believe "If you do breed 'em, don't kill 'em".
There are slow ways and quick ways to kill things. And there are cruel ways and humane ways.

Allowing a conception to develop until it reaches personhood and can breath, feel, think, emote and consider the future is laudable if there is a reasonable possibility that you, or someone else, can provide for its reasonable needs. If that is improbable, or even unlikely, then you are forcing a slow and cruel death on something instead of allowing it to die quickly and humanely. This may not be an easy choice, but we are talking about humane choices, not easy ones.

In contrast, the choice you perceive is falsely easy. The real choice is not between simple life and simple death but between the probable quality of life and the probable quality of death.

Nor is the real choice simply about the potential life of the conceived entity. It is about the effects which that conceived entity will have (with an estimated degree of certainty) on other human beings of worth.

We humans live in families and communities. Parents have responsibilities that go far beyond the life of a freshly conceived entity. They have responsibilities to themselves, to their spouse or partner, to their other children, to their wider family, to their community, to their nation and, more and more importantly in this time of dwindling and misuse of resources, to the world. It is not possible to make a mature and reasonable decision about continuing or terminating an unexpected or dangerous pregnancy unless you take the reasonable needs of other people into account, especially if you have bred them yourself. "If you breed them, don't kill them" should be applied to your fully formed existing children first.

As people mature they are generally able to make decisions which take into account a widening set of factors. In twenty years time, when you have children of your own, you may wonder how you could ever have been such a one-track thinker. For the sake of those future children, I hope so.
It's not the mother's body either. It's the child's.
At the stage when medical abortions are performed, it is an unreasonable anthropomorphic stretch to describe the conceived entity as having a "body". At that stage it is not a "child" (feeling, thinking, breathing, aware) and it does not have a "body."

If you have a wet dream and spill a few thousand sperm on your sheets you could be destroying more human life forms than an abortificant drug or a doctor performing an early abortion.

Should you deposit these sperm in some woman's virgina the chances are that one might impregnate an egg which fails to attach itself, or fails to remain attached, to the uterine wall. The resulting human "child" is usually lost in the tiolet. You might consider the idea of sifting through your household toilet bowl in case one of these baby bodies dropped in there. No? Then rethink your position.
I have a friend who is atheist and pro-life. It's the only thing we truly argue on.

He expresses many of the opinions mentioned here among the on-the-fencers or the ones who say things like a girl who doesn't use birth control and then has an abortion as a means of birth control.

My answer to him and to those mentioned above is that the abortion rights laws MUST be held up because those staunchly opposed will never stop until the very birth control pill itself is illegal.

What would that mean to a society such as ours? In the past, before the pill, we had some really neat automatic mechanisms that kept populations low, such as diesease, birth defects, exposure, wild animals and more. Oh the good old days.

We've got a good handle on many of those things today and I think the pill is really the great equalizer.
Without it, we would all be like the woman on TV last mother's day who was about to have her 18th child. They interviewed her with praise and admiration, immediately following a piece on "Your Human Footprint" (which I thought was the funniest thing). Imagine this woman's footprint! Whew!!!

I would also argue that the pill comes along at a time in history when woman are rising as equals to men. I think the pill gave many women in the 60s a chance to finish and education and start a career who may not have had the chance due to unwanted pregnancies.

Let the pro-lifers in, even a crack and you can eventually say good bye to the pill. Even the banning of the pill wouldn't be enough for them. Many on the far end of that argument would want capital punishments for the law breakers.

They use late term abortions, partial birth abortions and fetal rights (such as criminally charging a woman with child abuse if her baby is addicted to drugs) as crow bars to crack open the door but make no mistake, a crack wouldn't be enough.

For me the benefits of the pill far outweigh the consquences of removing it from society (not that you could anyway at this point).

On a side note, it's good to see that after the Atheist revolution is over, we will still have things to argue about. LOL
I think you raise many good points although some of them are a little exeggerated. Just because pro-lifers argue that abortion should be illegal it doesn't mean that any other forms of stopping conception should be; I can however see a danger where some people would indeed taking it too far but that doesn't mean that everyone will.

Also, isn't it funny how these pro-lifers always argue that if a woman gets pregnat she must take responsibility but yet refuse to argue for how the woman can learn how to act responsible during sexual relationships? Or I guess you should pray that all women suffer from such great pains when they perform vaginal sex that everyone will refrain from it. However, the truth looks rather differently.




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