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Woke Capitalism At Its Nastiest

 

Woke Capitalism at its nastiest: [1]

Executives in cosmetic, technology and media industries are standing up for reproductive health care as a mounting list of states moves to ban abortion.

Nearly 200 CEOs signed a letter opposing laws that restrict access to abortion saying they are “bad for business.”

The letter appeared Monday as a full-page ad in the New York Times with the title “Don’t Ban Equality.”

Among the companies represented in the letter were Yelp, H &M, M∙A∙C Cosmetics, Ben & Jerry’s Homemade, Inc, and Bloomberg L.P.

Here’s the text from the ad, and a link to the online version [2]:

Equality in the workplace is one of the most important business issues of our time. When everyone is empowered to succeed, our companies, our communities, and our economy are better for it.

Restricting access to comprehensive reproductive care, including abortion, threatens the health,
independence and economic stability of our employees and customers. Simply put, it goes against our values, and is bad for business. It impairs our ability to build diverse and inclusive workforce pipelines, recruit top talent across the states, and protect the wellbeing of all the people who
keep our businesses thriving day in and out.

The future of equality hangs in the balance, putting our families, communities, businesses, and the economy at risk.

Or, another way to put it:

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js [4]

It is past time for social and religious conservatives to get woke to the fact that Big Business is not our friend. Put that Reagan-era shibboleth under the ground with a stake in its heart and a rope of garlic around its neck. Those days are over. They ended in 2015, when Big Business bullied the State of Indiana into abandoning a minor religious liberty bill, because HATE — and Republicans surrendered. Woke Capitalists saw what they could accomplish.

Read the text of that ad closely. They frame exterminating an unborn child in the womb as “equality” — a term that strains credulity, but a term that the propagandists know resonates deeply with contemporary Americans. In what non-tortured sense is abortion rights “equality”? Even if you support them, the issue is not about equality. But it’s easy to see how they’re trying to sell it as such: it makes it more likely that they’ll succeed.

Curious, then, the timing of this Wall Street Journal story talking about how the South’s economy is faltering.  [5]Well, facts are facts, even if they are inconvenient. Still, a story appearing in the daily Bible of American capitalism, warning Southerners — where most of the pro-life legislation has emerged — that their economies are in peril, so they’d better not screw this up with their hatey-hate legislation, is interesting.

Preserving abortion rights and expanding LGBT rights (and therefore rolling back religious liberty) are the most sacred political values to American elites. Any polity that gets in the way of that will be crushed by Woke Capitalism. They hate us. It is true that the South is poor relative to the rest of the country, and it is also true that these rich folk may succeed in forcing us, in our poverty, to accept their rules, and surrender our dignity. But there is no poverty like the spiritual and moral poverty of these rich men and women. As St. Teresa of Calcutta put it, “It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish.”

To borrow a Walker Percy quote on abortion, to pro-abortionists [6]: You may get your way, Woke Capitalists, but you are going to be told what you are doing.

And who knows? We might even elect a politician who will put the screws to you as Huey P. Long put the screws to Standard Oil. Just keep on.

Not Diane von Furstenberg (Catholic Online screengrab [7])

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128 Comments To "Woke Capitalism At Its Nastiest"

#1 Comment By JeffK On June 13, 2019 @ 2:27 pm

@Lee says:
June 13, 2019 at 10:26 am

“It is not any more moral to ignore the plight of these women than it is to have abortions.”

Seems like many Conservatives ignore the plight of women seeking abortions of embryos/fetuses less than an ounce or two, not out of concern for the embryo/fetus, but with a desire to punish the woman for her sinful ways.

If conservatives were truly concerned for children, post-birth, they would graciously fund programs to help the woman raise a child if the woman does not have the financial means to do so. But they don’t. So they aren’t.

To me the real motives are clear. Control of a woman’s behavior by denying her control of her own body. From all I’ve seen in my 62 years that is the most obvious explanation. Nothing Conservatives have done to date will convince me otherwise.

When Conservatives start funding social programs to the levels required I will listen. Until then it’s all feel good virtue signalling.

#2 Comment By cka2nd On June 13, 2019 @ 2:39 pm

JonF says: “The pro-choicers may be wrong– I am not arguing their cause here– but for them the dividing line in discerning a moral claim on our attention is birth.”

It’s not even totally birth, Jon. Most supporters of abortion rights have no problem with pregnant women treating third trimester pregnancies differently from first and second trimester pregnancies, even if we don’t want the state to stick it’s big nose, or that of the religious right, into their personal business. I haven’t seen polling, but I think it is fair to assume that most of us oppose sex-selection abortions (again, even if we do not want to see it criminalized), and I really can’t imagine the vast majority of us not being appalled if someone in our family decided to get a third-trimester abortion for that reason. Birth may be the marker we have to use legally – although Roe left room for state regulation of late-term abortions – but it is not the sole marker morally or emotionally.

#3 Comment By A. G. Phillbin On June 13, 2019 @ 2:56 pm

@Elijah,

Sometimes, it amazes me how some people can not only hold two completely contradictory ideas in their head simultaneously, and not only not attempt to reconcile them, but not even see the absurdity involved. You started with:

This is about much more than pro-choice or pro-life: this is about whether or not we, as a society, are going to allow a bunch of rich, spoiled, privileged, and often ignorant business “leaders” to dictate public policy to us.

It seems obvious to me – a conservative – that CEOs are emblematic of a class of people who don’t deserve our trust and haven’t for decades. They have little vision, lousy leadership skills, and often mistake seniority or credentials for ability.

And then followed up with this howler:

This reminds me of Warren Buffett types clamoring for higher taxes: nobody is preventing you from cutting a check, pal, but stop trying to force your ideas on the rest of us.

Half the discussion in this thread, and part of the original post, were spent explaining that after years of using social “conservatives” as voting cattle for politicians that then promoted pro-business low tax policies for themselves, the same class of people now turn around and threaten boycotts against localities that pass socially “conservative” legislation. Now, how exactly does that remind you of Warren Buffett asking for the government to raise taxes on rich people LIKE HIMSELF, and how is “go write a check, pal” an intelligent answer, and exactly how was Buffett forcing anything on anyone? Practically all of his own class wanted these tax cuts, “conservatives” voted for the politicians that legislated these tax cuts for corporations and rich people, and it caused massive deficits and declining services. Buffet’s personal check would not alter any of that. But somehow, we’re supposed to trust your judgement about anyone’s “leadership skills?”

What your statement shows is that, as a “conservative,” YOU STILL DON’T GET IT. You’ve been played, and rewarded the very same people who are now actively opposing your “conservative” values, but still spout the corporate Republican party line: “go write a check, pal.”

Simply amazing!

#4 Comment By cka2nd On June 13, 2019 @ 3:18 pm

I see that just as the “pro-life” movement is abandoning the extremely successful legislative and regulatory gradualist approach of the last decade in favor of throwing a “Hail Mary” pass with these fetal heartbeat laws to overturn Roe altogether, so too are they abandoning the somewhat successful arguments over fetal development (viability, pain) that, along with the ultrasound, have worked to erode both public support for expansive abortion rights and private feelings about abortion as a personal option. In there place, to bolster the case for their fetal heartbeat laws, they have gone old school: a person is a person from the moment of conception through the moment of death, no exceptions, no shilly-shallying about viability or fetal pain or “partial-birth abortion,” unless they’re trying to shame pro-choicers.

Oh, they try to dress up the argument in scientific ways – it’s all human tissue and human life, whether it is a clump of cells or can’t feel pain or can’t survive outside the womb on it’s own – while side-stepping the fact that what it all comes down to is that they believe that a SOUL, a God-created soul, inhabits every “human being” from the moment of conception. There might be a few atheists who oppose abortion for whatever reasons, but the majority of the pro-life movement is working from a religious base when it comes to their ethical and moral stand on abortion. Their problem is that they have to hide this from the public, because the idea of the embryo having a soul runs up against overwhelming public support for legal early-term abortion, and the soul is just not a strong enough material argument – not against the ultrasound or fetal viability or proof about fetal pain – to get most Americans to support overturning Roe. But if they’re going to back their play to overturn Roe with these fetal heartbeat bills that would criminalize 90 or 95 percent of all abortions, they’ve got to go long with their arguments.

I could end up being all wrong about this, maybe the Roberts Court will use one of the fetal heartbeat laws to overturn Roe (questionable) and it won’t result in a backlash that could overturn GOP legislative majorities in a number (maybe a bunch) of states, but right now, I am truly hopeful that the “pro-life” movement is walking off a cliff that will set them back twenty years. Hail Mary, indeed.

#5 Comment By JohnInCA On June 13, 2019 @ 3:57 pm

@Daniel (not Larrison)

Really? I see rather that the pro-choice arguments “just aren’t very good”–especially the “abortion for any reason up until birth” position, which implies some kind of magical “personhood” to a lifeform that biologically does not differ in any way from what that lifeform was a day before.

Well of course your strawman is incoherent. That’s the entire reason you presented it that way.

But the actual arguments that pro-choice folks make? Well, there’s a reason the courts keep smacking down all these unconstitutional attempts to limit abortion.

@Rob G

Sorry, but the idea that any sizable percentage of the hundreds of Republicans that I’ve known over the past 40 years have been secretly anti-Constitution […]

Hold-up. Few folks who have blatantly unconstitutional views think of themselves as “anti-Constitution”. Humans are very good at rationalizing things.

Second-up, you’re the one who keeps trying to make this personal, about you and the folks you know. It’s not. Your ability to reassure yourself that the data is wrong with “well, nobody that I know […]” is pretty meaningless, even if you’re right.

#6 Comment By Rick On June 13, 2019 @ 5:48 pm

The religious South could have curtailed abortions decades ago. Instead the most draconian abortion restriction laws are in the states with the highest infant mortality rates and long term poverty impacts.

That’s by choice. A girl gets pregnant. She’s a sinner. She must take care of her baby in an economically marginalized region of the country.

With the millions of dollars sucked up into church coffers in that region, if any of those organizations gave a damn about children they would have offered support from cradle to college to any mother without judgment or restriction.

They could have, as an act of mercy, given women viable and caring options to choosing abortions. They could have worked with adoption agencies.

They could have set up long term child support systems for those not weren’t adopted.

They didn’t. They want the moral high ground at the expense of innocents. In that respect they’re just as responsible for abortions as anyone else.

They create the material conditions that make abortions a necessity economically and socially.

#7 Comment By RR On June 13, 2019 @ 10:36 pm

quote: “So no HIPAA for those on medicare or medicaid?”

Medical confidentially isn’t what the pro-choice rhetoric that “abortion should be between a woman and her doctor” is all about. Privacy in this context means free from government regulation or interference, the same way that we say the government shouldn’t interfere with other things in life described as a “private matter.” The problem is that if you take government funds, you open yourself up to government regulation. Federal money doesn’t come without strings attached. Pro-choice folks are hypocritical to demand that the government not interfere with abortion on the one hand, and on the other require taxpayers who disagree with abortion, but yet who have no choice but to pay taxes on the other hand, to support abortion. And if you try not paying taxes you will ultimately go to jail. So much for doing what you want with your own body. In short, you aren’t really pro-choice if you want other people who don’t have a choice to pay for your abortion.

quote: “Really? So, if you receive publicly funded medical treatment for colorectal cancer, that should now be considered NOT a private matter between yourself and your doctor?”

Medical confidentially isn’t the issue here. See my comment above.

quote: “True, but abortions are not generally done to merely make someone look better. But do please point me to the millions of people who have been polled favoring public funding for tummy tucks and nose jobs.”

Yes, but around 95%-97% of all abortions are not done to save the life of the mother, because of rape, incest or severe fetal abnormality. Rather, they are done because a women with a healthy pregnancy no longer wants to be pregnant. That makes them an elective procedure, which puts them in the same category as tummy tucks and nose jobs.

If you’re interested in polls on this, William Saletan, who is hardly pro-life, has a good, recent piece on how polls show a strong majority in favor of keeping the Hyde Amendment:

[8]

#8 Comment By David J. White On June 13, 2019 @ 10:41 pm

but the majority of the pro-life movement is working from a religious base when it comes to their ethical and moral stand on abortion.

The same could have been said for many of those who supported the abolition of slavery and worked for civil rights.

#9 Comment By Jefferson Smith On June 13, 2019 @ 10:59 pm

Contra Jefferson Smith, that’s a good question, not a merely rhetorical one.

The question of how abortion rights contribute to women’s equality is rhetorical when it’s posed by pro-lifers who claim that a fetus at any stage of development is a person. They’re obviously not really asking for arguments about what equality is or how it can be most fully achieved, because all such questions bearing on the social status of women are a distant second to the overriding need to save the fetal person’s life — and rightly so, if that’s your premise.

Which is why I say it all comes back to whether that premise is correct or not. If it is, then sure, the position of Disney and other companies reacting against the recent anti-abortion laws are morally incomprehensible. And if it isn’t, then the position of the legislators passing those laws is morally incomprehensible. So that’s where we are.

#10 Comment By Neophyte On June 14, 2019 @ 12:02 am

@JeffK

Suppose the Supreme Court was to rule that Americans have a constitutional right to kill (or in PC speak, “put to sleep”) illegal aliens. After all, Americans have a right to self-defense, and many illegal aliens have been known to rape and kill Americans. Furthermore, the Constitution doesn’t explicitly say that illegal aliens are “human persons” and who can really say what a human person is, it’s such a nebulous concept after all. Vigilante killings of illegal aliens increase 10 fold following the ruling.

One faction of Americans is horrified by this ruling declaring open season on illegal aliens and works to elect politicians to appoint judges that will reverse this decision. Another group of Americans reacts furiously at any attempts to restrict the “right” of Americans to put down illegal aliens. This second group argues if the anti-self-defensers REALLY cared about saving lives, they would support building a wall on the Mexican border, deport all illegals living in the country, and subsidize AR-15’s for every US citizen with taxpayer dollars. Now some individuals who oppose SCOTUS’ hypothetical decision think these policy proposals have merit. Others think they are delusional and will only make matters worse. Still others take a middle position. But what all “anti-self-defensers” have in common is the conviction that STOPPING HUMAN BEINGS FROM BEING KILLED IS A FAR BIGGER PRIORITY THAN ANY LEGISLATIVE PROPOSAL. Even if building a border wall, deporting all illegal aliens, and handing out free AR-15’s reduces the illegal border crossings to a trickle, the fact that any citizen can just butcher an illegal alien for any reason, no matter the age of the illegal alien, that is a national disgrace and a crime against humanity.

Now, you obviously do not think that the human embryo/fetus has any moral status, and I don’t expect to change your opinion with a single post. But I want you to consider how you would feel if the Roberts Court issued a ruling like the one I described above. Pro-lifers experience that feeling of horror, disgust, and shame towards their country every day. There is an obvious reason why conservatives oppose abortion, and it has nothing to do with something as petty as “controlling women’s bodies”.

#11 Comment By Rob G On June 14, 2019 @ 7:47 am

Jeff K, your 2:27 p.m. comment demonstrates that you are not worth talking to on this subject. These “objections” have been answered so many times here and elsewhere that only a troll would rehash them. Thus, you own yourself a troll, at least on this subject.

~~Few folks who have blatantly unconstitutional views think of themselves as “anti-Constitution”. Humans are very good at rationalizing things.~~

Irrelevant, as that was not what the initial comment was about. It concerned supposed conservatives who in polls were statedly approving of dismantling the Constitution. It had nothing to do with the rationalizing of possibly unconstitutional views.

~~Your ability to reassure yourself that the data is wrong with “well, nobody that I know […]” is pretty meaningless, even if you’re right.~~

Please. You would not be so dense about this if it were a poll that said that 57% of liberals reported that they were actually Communists who wanted to overthrow the government. Would you have the slightest inclination to believe that over half of your fellow libs were Commies?

#12 Comment By JeffK On June 14, 2019 @ 8:19 am

@Neophyte says:
June 14, 2019 at 12:02 am

Unfortunately, I had to take two courses in logic in order to get out of grad school. It scarred me for life. Those courses provided a foundation in critical thinking.

Regarding deductive reasoning, which your post uses, from the peer reviewed Internet Encyclopedia of Validity and Soundness (linked):

“A deductive argument is said to be valid if and only if it takes a form that makes it impossible for the premises to be true and the conclusion nevertheless to be false. Otherwise, a deductive argument is said to be invalid.

A deductive argument is sound if and only if it is both valid, and all of its premises are actually true. Otherwise, a deductive argument is unsound.”

Your premise, that SCOTUS could validate a law that allows Americans to kill undocumented aliens on site just COULD NOT HAPPEN. Not ever. Therefore, such an impossible premise invalidates your argument. Such arguments make interesting discussion, enhanced by a glass of smooth bourbon in front of a crackling campfire, but cannot, at the end of the day, be considered sound.

Here’s one. Assume the moon is made of cheese. Much fuel could be saved on a moon mission if only macaroni and milk is included in the cache of rations. Logistical problem solved. More room for crackers too. I think the NASA and the astronauts would disagree.

[9]

#13 Comment By JeffK On June 14, 2019 @ 8:27 am

@@Neophyte says:
June 14, 2019 at 12:02 am

“Now, you obviously do not think that the human embryo/fetus has any moral status…”

This is not a binary discussion. It’s not that I think an embryo or fetus does not have a moral status (whatever that means).

My belief is that the mother has status over the fetus for at least the first 20-some weeks. After that regulations can become increasingly strict. That is the majority opinion within the US.

#14 Comment By Elijah On June 14, 2019 @ 8:48 am

“Practically all of his own class wanted these tax cuts, “conservatives” voted for the politicians that legislated these tax cuts for corporations and rich people, and it caused massive deficits and declining services.”

You mistake yourself. (1) I do not equate conservatives with Republicans. (2) Buffett’s “own class” amounts to about six people (3) Buffett is all about the government requiring him to pay more taxes – without the force of law, he will apparently do nothing and (4) as a conservative, I disapprove of many of those tax cuts, crony capitalism, and a rapidly increasing deficit.

And, as an aside, I resent being scolded by the super-rich and privileged.

Like others here, you love a good rant without thinking through what you’re talking about. How tiresome.

#15 Comment By Siarlys Jenkins On June 14, 2019 @ 11:33 am

Suppose the Supreme Court was to rule that Americans have a constitutional right to kill (or in PC speak, “put to sleep”) illegal aliens. After all, Americans have a right to self-defense, and many illegal aliens have been known to rape and kill Americans.

Neophyte, you are playing a MAD Lib game, and it makes about as much sense as the similar MAD Lib games the LGBTQWERTY crowd plays. Stick an unlike noun or verb into a blank as long as the sentence remains grammatically correct, and you can turn up all kinds of absurd statements. When its done for fun, they are funny, because they are so absurd. When you try to do it as a serious argument, it just falls flat.

Attitudes toward race and attitudes toward sexuality have different histories, roots, rationales, motives, and effects. One is not like the other. “Illegal aliens” is a category of born human beings. Whatever you may think is the moral status of a fetus, it is simply not the same thing. The Supreme Court could not, and has not come close to, applying the same logic to these two unlike questions, because it would be utterly incongruous to do so.

Its a bit like if I said, I smash mosquites whenver they land on my arm, and you asked, “So, would you step on a puppy and crush its skull if it walked on the sidewalk past your house?”

#16 Comment By Siarlys Jenkins On June 14, 2019 @ 2:44 pm

Would you have the slightest inclination to believe that over half of your fellow libs were Commies?

Well I wouldn’t. Communists know better than to call themselves liberals. The working class has never trusted liberals, and for good reason.

They’re obviously not really asking for arguments about what equality is or how it can be most fully achieved

Jefferson Smith, you have never been so incoherent. “Equality” doesn’t hold a candle to “murder.” Obviously we have wide disagreement on whether abortion constitutes murder. I don’t. You don’t. Some of the people we’re talking with, including our gracious host, do. (More or less — they do quibble about whether a woman who voluntarily seeks to terminate her pregnancy is a criminal or a victim, and honestly there are good arguments for both in varying circumstances).

But IF the premise “abortion is murder” be accepted, then “equality” ceases to be a valid argument for murder.

All of which is irrelevant to my original statement, but this is how you chose to argue “equality.” Since I do not consider first or second trimester abortion to by murder (I’m open to moving the boundary from “quickening” to 20 weeks for the most part), I don’t really have to worry about that.

Which brings me back to my original point… men and women have substantially different roles in childbirth and pregnancy, and there is NO WAY to introduce “equality” into that process until a live baby is delivered. Even then, daddy can’t nurse the baby, there is no “equality” there, but he can change diapers, walk the baby to sleep, feed him anything else he’s ready to consume, etc.

#17 Comment By Jefferson Smith On June 14, 2019 @ 6:34 pm

“Equality” doesn’t hold a candle to “murder.”

Right, I said that: “….all such questions bearing on the social status of women [i.e. their equality] are a distant second to the overriding need to save the fetal person’s life — and rightly so, if that’s your premise.”

So yes, obviously, “‘equality’ ceases to be a valid argument for murder.” If it’s murder, then the “overriding need” (see my exact words above) is to prevent it, equality and all other considerations be damned. That’s exactly what I said. You just hate it when you can’t find some way to disagree with me. Well, sorry, but I can’t oblige you in this case.

#18 Comment By Thrice A Viking On June 14, 2019 @ 6:34 pm

CKA 2nd, you asked why Woke Capitalism didn’t mess too much with various states that curtailed abortion “rights” somewhat. I presume that you believe that the reason is that the newer laws are far more extreme. That may be the case, but couldn’t another reason be that Obama was there to protect them, and either Hillary or JEB! would have done the same. But the tide of discontent that propelled Trump to victory, and a close second for Bernie in the Democrats’ primary-caucus season, may have been discerned by them as a distinct threat. Time to pose as the good guys again! That’s why they had to become “woke”.

#19 Comment By Siarlys Jenkins On June 14, 2019 @ 7:25 pm

You just hate it when you can’t find some way to disagree with me. Well, sorry, but I can’t oblige you in this case.

Then what IS your point? You keep trying to tell us that equality for women is part of the abortion debate, and I don’t see it. I reviewed why just in case you missed it the first time.

#20 Comment By Neophyte On June 15, 2019 @ 1:06 pm

@JeffK @Siarlys Jenkins

You seem to have misunderstood the purpose of my post. I was not trying to provide a logical proof that abortion is immoral or that Roe v. Wade should be overturned. You seem to think I was making an argument along the lines of “A Supreme Court decision declaring a right to kill illegal aliens would be a terrible decision; therefore Roe v. Wade is a terrible decision”. That would be an awful argument, and it was not the argument I was trying to make.

I wrote my post as a response to JeffK’s earlier claims:

“If conservatives were truly concerned for children, post-birth, they would graciously fund programs to help the woman raise a child if the woman does not have the financial means to do so. But they don’t. So they aren’t.

To me the real motives are clear. Control of a woman’s behavior by denying her control of her own body. From all I’ve seen in my 62 years that is the most obvious explanation. Nothing Conservatives have done to date will convince me otherwise.”

I’ve also heard pro-abortion advocates claim that pro-lifers should promote universal contraception as the most effective way to reduce abortions. I think these are bad arguments, and my thought experiment was an attempt to illustrate why a genuine pro-lifer might be opposed to government provided contraception or increased funding for single mothers.

I do not think it is likely SCOTUS would declare a fundamental right to kill illegal aliens. All I am saying is if SCOTUS did issue such a ruling in a bizarro-world, not one of us would think building a Mexican border wall or handing out free AR-15s would be a priority. First and foremost, we would be linking arms to stop the vigilante killings of illegal aliens.

You don’t have to think the analogy is perfect. I just want to open your minds to the conservative thought process. I personally think increasing funding for single mothers or funding additional adoption services or even paying woman to not abort their babies are ideas worth considering. Of course, the devil is in the details (I don’t want to incentivize women to get pregnant just to make a quick buck). Conservatives have a range of prudential judgments on how much government funding would be appropriate to support single mothers, and a conservative that is stingy on social welfare does not necessarily have a secret agenda to “control women”. Conservatives simply view abortion the way you would view vigilante killings of illegal aliens.

I hope this clears up any confusion. Perhaps I should have been clearer about the post’s purpose. A writer should not assume his audience can read his mind.

#21 Comment By Siarlys Jenkins On June 15, 2019 @ 7:33 pm

Neophyte, you have now made it reasonably clear that you meant something much more complex than the analogy you offered. But you still haven’t really made a clear statement of what you ARE trying to say. It seems the conservative thought process is not your thought process, but you haven’t provided a reliable analysis to what “the conservative thought process” is exactly.

#22 Comment By Jefferson Smith On June 16, 2019 @ 6:56 am

You keep trying to tell us that equality for women is part of the abortion debate, and I don’t see it.

There are various people and agencies making the argument that women’s equality depends on abortion rights. I think it’s a fairly common position among pro-choicers, and I linked to a few examples. This was in answer to the question in the original post, “In what non-tortured sense is abortion rights ‘equality’? Even if you support them, the issue is not about equality.” Well, for some who support them, apparently it is, or so they argue.

Now, to what extent are those arguments correct? I didn’t take a position of my own on that. It’s not a question I’ve investigated very deeply, in part because I’m not a woman, and therefore do not have a felt sense of what kind of crisis an unplanned pregnancy would represent or how it would bear on my other aspirations. Therefore it’s hard for me to assess how relatively “unequal” that possibility would tend to make me.

In general, I’m in favor of political, legal and social equality for women wherever it’s achievable; I’m not opposed to early-term abortions; and I’m in broad agreement with the Roe formula as regards rights to privacy in medical decision-making. So if women want to argue that abortion rights help enable their quest for equality, well, that doesn’t set off my BS detector or strike me as obviously absurd.

But that’s as far as I’ve gone down this track. My “point” here, since you ask, was that there are, as a matter of fact, people who are offering answers to the question posed in the post, but the further question of what those mean for abortion policy depends entirely on whether we take early-term fetuses to be persons with their own rights or not. If we do, then women’s rights to equality obviously take a back seat to the fetuses’ right to life. If we don’t, and abortion is just a medical procedure with no larger moral meaning, then making it available seems like a good thing to do, if in fact this would contribute to some other worthy goal — like, helping women advance beyond the many centuries when they were treated as second- or third-class citizens and denied the rights that we now recognize they should have.

#23 Comment By Lee On June 17, 2019 @ 2:32 pm

@ Neophyte
“Conservatives have a range of prudential judgments on how much government funding would be appropriate to support single mothers, and a conservative that is stingy on social welfare does not necessarily have a secret agenda to “control women”. Conservatives simply view abortion the way you would view vigilante killings of illegal aliens.”

Which is to say they totally dismiss the woman’s right, needs, situation, value and humanity. She is an incubator and that is all. Which is why they can say things that are this ridiculous:

“(I don’t want to incentivize women to get pregnant just to make a quick buck).”

Have you ever known a pregnant woman??? There are rare women who are willing to be surrogates and such but, generally speaking, pregnancy is extremely taxing physically, causes major difficulties if you are working, going to school, caring for kids or pretty much anything else and causes permanent changes to your body, among other things. Would you deal with all of that (plus some) for “a quick buck”?

Ignoring the woman’s situation and ignoring the man’s responsibilities and only considering the fetus is morally wrong. Doing so while claiming to be compassionate and just “stingy with social welfare” is morally ***cheap and easy***.

#24 Comment By Neophyte On June 17, 2019 @ 10:51 pm

@Siarlys Jenkins

What I am saying is this: liberals that accuse conservatives of not caring for the unborn based on their opposition towards government provided contraception or increased social welfare programs are acting just as ridiculous as hypothetical “right-wing extremists” claiming if people really cared about illegal aliens, they would support a Mexican border wall and mass deportations so that Americans would not have to resort to vigilante killings.

The ‘right to kill illegal aliens’ thought experiment is meant to be provocative, far-fetched, and absurd. But the thought experiment is also structured in a way to resemble the abortion debate in America as closely as possible. In the thought experiment, there is a right to kill illegal aliens (no state can prosecute individuals that kill illegal aliens). In the US, there is a right to abortion (no state can prosecute individuals that commit or perform abortions). In the thought experiment, vigilante killings are justified by a right to self-defense. In the US, abortions are justified by the right to privacy (or the right to bodily integrity, or the right to be non-pregnant). In the thought experiment, one can personally oppose killing illegal aliens while also thinking it’s none of the governments business to restrict the practice. In the US, one can personally be opposed to abortion but not want Roe v. Wade overturned. In the thought experiment, one can argue if there were no ‘unwanted immigrants’ (thanks to a border wall and deportations) there would be no need for vigilante killings. In the US, one can argue if there were no ‘unwanted pregnancies’ (thanks to contraception and social welfare programs) there would be no need for abortion.

The expected response from a pro-abortion advocate should go something along, “Killing illegal aliens and getting an abortion are not at all similar! The former is murdering a human being while the latter is a necessary medical procedure!”

The pro-abortion advocate is partially correct in his or her response. The argument does not establish that killing an illegal alien or getting an abortion are morally equivalent. But the thought experiment is not trying to accomplish that goal. All the argument is implying is that if you accept the premise that human fetuses have the same moral status as illegal aliens (and the rights to privacy/bodily integrity no more override the fetus’ right to life than the right to self-defense overrides the illegal alien’s right to life) then typical liberal arguments in favor of abortion are just as bad hypothetical arguments in favor of killing illegal aliens.

We both agree murdering illegal aliens is wrong because illegal aliens have a fundamental dignity. We do not agree on the moral status of human fetuses. But liberals cannot blithely dismiss the pro-life position unless they can demonstrate that the human fetus lacks the moral status of illegal aliens. I think liberals fail in this argument, but that is a different debate that is independent of the thought experiment.

#25 Comment By Neophyte On June 17, 2019 @ 11:07 pm

@Lee

You are right to point out that pregnancy is physically taxing on a woman’s body. That is why the government cannot expect a mere $500 or $1000 bucks to dissuade a woman from getting an abortion. A surrogate mother can charge $50,000-$60,000 for carrying the child to term. By definition, a single woman (with no kids) below the poverty line is making less than $12,000 per year. If the government were to pay women 50-60k to carry their own children to term, a substantial number of women would get pregnant to score a big payday. It’s the same mindset women have when they sleep with rich celebrities and athletes so that they can collect child support for years to come. I am not claiming all women, or even a majority of women, would manipulate their sexuality in such a manner. What I am saying is that women are just as wicked as men, and like men, they will give into sin if it is advantageous. That is why it is difficult to judge how much money to hypothetically give to women in order to discourage them from getting abortions. Offer too little money and there will be no measurable effect. Offer too much money and you will have millions of additional out-of-wedlock babies that need to be taken care of by someone.

#26 Comment By JonF On June 20, 2019 @ 6:18 am

Re: Have you ever known a pregnant woman??? There are rare women who are willing to be surrogates and such but, generally speaking, pregnancy is extremely taxing physically

Not to mention that raising a child from infancy to 18 is more than a full-time job. (Yes, I know surrogates don’t do that part, but we are talking women who become mothers in general here). Anyone who has kids, even Scrooges and Legrees, should be able to agree on that. Why this weird devaluation of mothers? Are children and mothers not worth at least the bare subsistence paid by welfare? You can’t have it both ways. If children are worth nothing then why care about abortion? If children are valuable as human beings then why begrudge money spent on them? Again, YOU CAN’T HAVE IT BOTH WAYS.

#27 Comment By Dorota On June 22, 2019 @ 4:23 pm

Isn’t a conservative a person who values and respects the achievements of his civilization? Isn’t a liberal a person who – while there is nothing new under the sun – wants change for the sake of change (or he would say: social justice)? The conflict between people who reject abortion as an evil deed and those who consider it a civilizational accomplishment is not about economics. Many wealthy people choose abortion, and the wealthiest nations choose it most of all. It is abut the question: Who / what is man and why is man here? With the celebrations of anal pleasures in our schools and streets we have given an answer. By “we” I do not mean the remnant who consider a conceived human being a blessing from God, and an act of potential conception – a sacred matter, one involving a man and his wife.

Pro-lifers will not be successful until the view of sex as a fun activity will become a thing of the barbaric past.

A child is not comparable to some muscle spasms achieved (not infrequently) with the help of moving pictures, music and pharmaceuticals.

A winning argument is the truth. The truth is that women have not been liberated by abortion. They were made slaves to the rat race, to evil feminist / gender ideology and political correctness. They do not thrive while being forced to slave away in boring jobs, while their children (if they have any in place of cats and dogs) are on storage, cared for by other women stuck in low-paying jobs.

Both women and men thrive when they act according to their nature. This nature is not like an animal’s which has no reason to control its impulses. Humans have the ability of rational thought and free will (to those who do not believe in free will, why do you scream: I am pro-choice!?).

A woman is more powerful and fulfilled when she doesn’t invite just anybody who will give her spasms. When one has too much pleasure (too much cake, for example), one becomes bored and seeks more intensity. One becomes lazy and unhealthy, too.

A child is a blessing, not a pleasure. It binds man and woman and makes their love stronger and their lives – more meaningful. We used to know this. We used to value reason, discipline and virtue. We lived under the “patriarchal oppression” of absolute Truth. That “oppression” was nothing less than our conscience.

It is hard to argue against killing babies, because today the whole West is degenerate, including most so called conservatives. God said that He will send not another flood, but a cleansing fire this time. Get ready. And do not call a just God cruel. The way it is going, His creation is not worth saving.

When a woman (and then the whole government) demands that I pay for the extermination of her children (some conceived at drunken parties, where women were practicing equality to men and experiencing “empowerment), because that is good for her (she can attend more drunken parties) and for the economy, and when I who refuse to do that am public enemy, a hater, a woman hater, a backward Bible-thumper… By rejecting our Christian roots and ways, we have become like beasts.

Want a proof? Do not only look to organ harvesting, mediocrity in everything, self-centredness and hedonism, falling education results, look at an old movie… And weep, if you still can. We have not made progress, but thrown ourselves into a huge paddle of mud a feces, from where we make arguments for empowerment of women (so few have careers, and so many have sold their children for a minimum wage job) while slaving their lives away and denying themselves that which helps a woman find fulfillment and thrive – a family.

#28 Comment By Lee On June 23, 2019 @ 1:20 pm

@ Neophyte
“Offer too little money and there will be no measurable effect. Offer too much money and you will have millions of additional out-of-wedlock babies that need to be taken care of by someone.”

You want one simple solution to a wide variety of problems that require appropriate solutions. Providing free contraception, free healthcare for pregnant women and babies and free addiction treatment for pregnant addicts would help enormously without any of your feared “incentives”. Measures to hold fathers responsible, support for women suffering domestic abuse, and a list of similar programs would also help without incentives.