Who Decides?

An exchange between Planned Parenthood Alisa Snow and Representative Jim Boyd: "So, um, it is just really hard for me to even ask you this question because I’m almost in disbelief," said Rep. Jim Boyd. "If a baby is born on a table as a result of a botched abortion, what would Planned Parenthood want to have happen to that child that is struggling for life?" "We believe that any decision that’s made should be left up to the woman, her family, and the physician," said Planned Parenthood lobbyist Snow.

Alisa Laport Snow, the lobbyist representing the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood Affiliates, testified that her organization believes the decision to kill an infant who survives a failed abortion should be left up to the woman seeking an abortion and her abortion doctor. She supports infanticide.

Why are we surprised? I covered this last April when I observed that we are quickly marching to being a society that sanctions infanticide. In the Journal of Medical Ethics, the following was written, “Abortion is largely accepted even for reasons that do not have anything to do with the fetus’ health. By showing that (1) both fetuses and newborns do not have the same moral status as actual persons, (2) the fact that both are potential persons is morally irrelevant and (3) adoption is not always in the best interest of actual people, the authors argue that what we call ‘after-birth abortion’ (killing a newborn) should be permissible in all the cases where abortion is, including cases where the newborn is not disabled.”

And there is “ethicist” Peter Singer who wrote, “Human babies are not born self-aware, or capable of grasping that they exist over time. They are not persons”; therefore, “the life of a newborn is of less value than the life of a pig, a dog, or a chimpanzee.” The slippery slope that is abortion is becoming a reality as human life has become cheaper and cheaper. Ask most Pro-life legislators what restriction would you allow in law, and they most likely agree that the life of the mother should be protected and many pro-lifers would also add babies born of rape or incest. Yet, ask any pro-abortionist, would you disallow abortion in the final trimester? Many pro-abortionists would say no. I purposely use pro-abortion as opposed to pro-choice for anyone who routinely supports the abortion of babies after the six month mark, other than to save the life of the mother, as supporting infanticide. During the course of the debate about abortion, we forget that there are two lives involved and somewhere, the rights of the unborn to be born have to be considered. Exactly when does society say to the unborn, you will be granted right to life? While the left says, here are the limits that society will set on when abortion should be legal and when the rights of unborn takes precedence.

In the debate about Same-sex marriage, again no limits are being set by the left and a few libertarians. Exactly what adult arrangements can society outlaw if marriage is a fundamental right? Judge Sonia Sotomayor asked Ted Olson during the recent Supreme Court session, “Mr. Olson, the bottom line that you're being asked -- and -- and it is one that I'm interested in the answer: If you say that marriage is a fundamental right, what State restrictions could ever exist? Meaning, what State restrictions with respect to the number of people, with respect to -- that could get married -- the incest laws, the mother and the child, assuming they are of age -- I can -- I can accept that the State has probably an overbearing interest on -- on protecting the a child until they're of age to marry, but what's left?”

While everyone suspects how Judge Sotomayor will vote to support the right for gays to marry, she ask the question of Ted Olson that many conservatives have asked: what limits can society legislate when it comes to family structure? If gays have a fundamental right to marry, will society still be able to outlaw polygamy, bigamy and as Judge Sotomayor noted, incest? It is one thing for society, through Democratic process, allow gays to marry and society will still have the right to outlaw polygamy or maintain age of consent? It is not enough to argue as Olson did, same sex marriage is based on behavior and polygamy is conduct which can be outlawed. What will stop a future court stating that Polygamy is as much a fundamental right as same-sex marriage, especially since Polygamy is allowed worldwide and has support in religious tradition? (A simple reading of the Old Testament will support this.) This is not an argument against same sex marriage, but advocates supporting same-sex marriage must be prepared to allow society to set limits, family arrangements that will be disastrous to society. The slippery slope of abortion is leading to infanticide, and whether same-sex will lead to a slippery slope, is a question that will be answered shortly. Will those who support same-sex marriage support society's ability to restrict marriage to strictly an affair between two individuals?

Many supporters of gun rights have many reasons not to compromise with their opponents for the simple reason that gun rights supporters know that the other side is using any compromise as a stepping stone toward the elimination of gun rights. Gun rights in both Heller and McDonald came within one vote on the Supreme Court of being eliminated, and gun rights supporters know that the left is looking to use the Courts to overturn the Constitution and the Second Amendment. Abortion is turning into infanticide, we have Mayors who think it is their duty to dictate the size of pop drinks and refuse to set limits to what government should do or sanction.

Red State John Hayward noted in a recent piece, “In truth, slippery-slope concerns are perfectly reasonable. They are a standard part of the 'progressive' battle plan. A core tenet of progressivism is to take incremental, but irreversible, steps toward the total State. They hope that each new expansion of government will swiftly acquire a dependent constituency that will fight much harder to protect their favorite programs than weary taxpayers will struggle to terminate them. Diffuse taxation pays for specific benefits. Who knows where each dollar paid to the tax man goes? But everyone receiving a dollar from Uncle Sugar most certainly knows where it comes from… The purpose of the Constitution was to establish a set of inalienable rights that would never be infringed at all, and thus could not be rolled downhill. There are supposed to be some aspects of individual freedom that are forever off the table, no matter how urgently benevolent politicians and super-intelligent regulators want to violate them for the 'greater good.' Once concessions have been made from an absolute right, it is no longer absolute, and its further dissolution becomes negotiable.” The Constitution was designed to limit the appetite of the governing class and those they ruled, but in today’s America, the appetite is unlimited but the ability to satisfy those appetites is not.

On both abortion and gay marriage, Jonah Goldberg recently wrote, “I’ve been in favor of civil unions for more than a decade — back when it was considered a left-wing position, not a fallback right-wing one. And I’d probably still prefer civil unions if we had settled on some arrangement that conferred the economic and legal benefits of traditional marriage without calling it marriage. Still, gays have an entirely understandable reluctance to settle for that and, besides, I think the argument over whether or not to call civil unions 'marriage' has been all but lost, though there’s a glimmer of hope the decision might eventually be left to the states (which I favor)…. As for abortion, my migration has less to do with religious arguments and more to do with my growing distrust of the government. Who is and who isn’t a human being with unalienable rights is just about the biggest question there is…ell, I consider a fetus a human being. It has done no harm, nor has it committed a crime punishable by death. More important, I don’t like it when governments start getting clever about who counts as full human beings and who doesn’t (See: Slavery, U.S.; or Holocaust, Nazi). There are few areas where a bright line is more vital or necessary.” Goldberg's point is that same-sex advocate may have a case, but then when government decides who is human, it is a bridge that leads to a cul-da-sac in which government becomes the final arbitrator of rights. When government can dictate rights, it can easily remove those rights!

The issue here is that Society will make changes in the norm, but Society also has a right to determine those norms, and those norms should not be imposed from above. Abortion was imposed by the Courts and now we are facing infanticide. The courts are now threatening to impose their definition of marriage, while the debate is still swirling. Had the Courts favored the unborn in 1972, we would have come up with a solution that majority of Americans would have agreed upon, and the rights of the unborn would have been better balanced than it is today. If the Courts leave this debate alone, we may come up with a better solution that the majority, including many gays will be able to live with or accept. The Courts have set the course toward infanticide, and the Courts are now setting a course that any relationship will be approved from above with Society having no recourse. Nor can those who view this as a stepping stone toward Polygamy be dismissed as there are constitutional legal theorists who are already preparing to have Polygamy equal to a two parent household, straight or gay. The real issue before us is can Society set limits? The answer so far is discouraging.



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