The old discussion point about when life begins — at conception, viability, a certain trimester — appears to be resolved by some politicians. Apparently, life begins when they say it does.
Senators were not able to pass a bill that would make abortion illegal in the “4th trimester”. The Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act was meant to protect babies that somehow had survived an abortion attempt by compelling doctors to provide care for these patients as they would any other patient.
But far be it for anyone who has a commitment to the ideology of uninhibited sexual freedom to let surviving babies ruin their access to “reproductive health” and abortions at any stage. From The Federalist’s David Harsanyi:
Senate Democrats unsurprisingly struggled to find an effective way to lie about opposing a bill that prohibits abortion in the fourth trimester. Some of them maintained that Sasse’s bill was superfluous because all the things in it were already illegal. Others claimed the bill would “restrict doctors from making case-by-case decisions about what is best for infants and mothers.” Still others claimed the practice never ever happens. Other Democrats, who support government intervention in every nook and cranny of human existence, argued that tough choices should only be the domain of women and their doctors, not the state. Many of them saw no conflict between these ideas and argued all these things at the very same time.
Sen. Patty Murray claimed the bill was “clearly anti-doctor, anti-woman and anti-family” and that “proponents claim it would make something illegal that is already illegal.” This is untrue, regardless of a full-court press from Democrats and the media. As bills in both Virginia and New York clearly illustrate, the practice isn’t illegal. Both bills specifically provide legal protections for doctors who terminate babies who survive abortion attempts.
Honestly, what the hell is wrong with these people?
Political causes are real, and often worthy of their effort. But let’s be honest, this is ludicrous. This is an ideology’s ridiculous conclusion being absolutely ignored. My best guess is that voting against this bill is being used to gain political clout (notice how many presidential hopefuls voted against it!). This is being done to be able to later say, “You see! I’m on the side of women’s rights!” Even though in my mind, I can’t understand how a child that is born, survived an abortion, and is living and breathing on their own is still the “right” of woman.
We have unfortunately given our government so much power and looked to them for so much “assistance” that they now have a firm grasp on many of the most important aspects of our life.
In Canada, when a 13-year old student started to believe she was a male, a psychologists recommended hormone therapy to accompany her gender dysphoric feelings. While both parents were coming to terms with their daughter’s feelings, they both were against hormones. However, their daughter’s doctors decided that in this case, their daughter’s treatment was not up to them. From Jeremiah Keenan of The Federalist quoting a statement to the parents:
BC Children’s Hospital believed Maxine was a “mature minor,” who could receive treatment against the wishes of both her parents, according to section 17 of the BC Infants Act. Using Maxine’s male moniker, “Quinn,” Hursh explained:
“Quinn’s healthcare team has concluded that he possesses sufficient maturity and intelligence to be capable of consenting to his own medical care, notwithstanding the fact that he is only 14 years old. Furthermore, the team agrees that the proposed course of treatment is in his best interests. We appreciate that these conclusions differ from your own….We always strive to get parents to agree to support a proposed course of treatment, however, under these circumstances we are of the view that it is ultimately up to Quinn to give or withhold consent to his own medical care; neither you nor his mother can make this decision for him.”
Although the parents have brought this to court, it is not clear what will happen. This story is an example of the issue of parents’ legal protections for how they parent their children. There is almost no limit to where government feels they can or should dictate what is right and wrong.
Being hesitant to allow government to bring regulation into every area of our life might seem paranoid. But discounting concern as paranoia is a juvenile and short-sited point of view. You needn’t be all that mature to know that government is fallible and is often led by illogical arguments, or worse, improper motives.
For example, our government takes much advise from organizations like the American Psychological Association (APA). However, as Chris Ferguson, a member of the APA, explains, they and other organizations have ulterior motives. In an article regarding APA’s poor research on corporal punishment from parents, he writes:
Many people in the general public believe that organizations such as the APA or American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) are neutral, objective scientific organizations or that they are even part of the government. But they are largely professional guilds wherein members like me pay dues to support their profession (both, but particularly the APA, are also publication houses). As a result, such organizations tend to market their fields much like any business markets its products. Impressive sounding science brings the field prestige, captures the attention of policy makers and helps members with grants, newspaper headlines, and career advancement.
Ideologically loaded statements have become more common in recent years. The APA has had a particularly bad run of it. Just this past January, the APA’s practice guidelines for men and boys became a polarizing lightning rod, beloved by some cultural progressives, but largely panned in the centre and on the Right as stereotyping and arguably sexist in their portrayal of men and “traditional masculinity.” The guidelines were long on progressive terminology but relied on weak evidence and ignored entire fields of research related to the biological roots of gender.
The bottom line is that professional guilds such as the APA and AAP have a demonstrable track record of unreliability when speaking on matters of science. This means that parents, the general public, and policy makers may base decisions on erroneous pseudo-scientific claims that can’t be backed by good data. Perhaps the most egregious issue is when such bodies simply pretend no controversy exists in fields that are, in fact, highly controversial. This behavior, known as “citation bias,” has been described by some scholars as one of the seven deadly sins of research scholarship. As professors, we would give a student a failing grade for such behavior in an academic paper. And yet professional guilds engage in such behavior on a fairly regular basis, at least with respect to behavioral research.
When our governments stop listening to a large number of people who are calling out their ludicrous judgement, all while they are still relying on organizations like the APA who routinely depart from scientific standards, we must realize what we are working with. Sure we must vote for leaders who do not have such blind faith in government and research organizations, but we must also prepare for a life of heightened alertness to the potential dangers of these groups. We have truly put too much trust in princes1