Thursday, April 19, 2012

We Might As Well Play The Sims

I suppose I should not be surprised and there's probably a reason why I never really spend any time on NationState's "General" subforum, and stick largely to the roleplaying sections of the board. The website is, at any given time, consumed with debate over socialism, abortion, or a children's show called My Little Pony... in any and all possible combinations of any or all of the above, up to and including aborting socialist ponies, though I suspect that was quite a bit of satire.

It probably goes to show that we do tend to get a little more mature as we age that I've manageed nt to get myself sucked into any of these arguments. If I respond at all, I include a line to say I won't be actively following the topic, and that anyone who wishes to debate details should send me a message to my inbox (what we call a TG or Telegram) to let me know that they've responded. I don't have the time or the inclination to spend days upon days, quite literally, following a single topic waiting for people to tell me why I am wrong, so that I can simply tell them how they didn't understand my argument. My style of discussion has matured, along with my need for it, I guess.

However there's always been something that bothered me about the abortion debates, and that's the language used by the pro-choice crowd, using words like tumor and parasite to describe the foetus, and words like disease and disability to describe the pregnancy. Topics spring up all the time (in an attempt, I suppose, to get the not-inconsiderable right-wing portion of the forum to start admitting conditions where abortion would be "Okay, I guess", such as one topic that sprung up late last night asking if, and I quote the original post in full:
 If a doctor found a way to with 100% accuracy pinpoint the sexual orientation of fetuses, would an abortion be OK if the parants found out that their baby would be born gay?
Let's ignore the natural asshole-factor of taking two issues like homosexuality and abortion and stapling them together (expecting to get logical responses), and take as read that a great many members of the forum gave one-word answers and posted pictures of the famous jet-pack "nothing to do here" image. Essentially, this is an argument from eugenics.

Eugenics is, of course, the idea that we can basically breed better people by eliminating genotypes we consider to be "subversive" or "undesirable". In the past it's been used to justify genocide and at present it's a justification for aborting children with birth defects and mental disabilities, such as those who show signs of developing Down Syndrome. Admittedly, some of these diseases, acquired during foetal development,  are entirely unsurvivable. Many others aren't, and questions like this one and the current practice of aborting children with the genetic markers for mental illness are an indication of what people have been telling me for years and I've been refusing to listen to:

We, as a society, are sick.

Now, I'm not going to get up on too high of a moralistic horse, being, generally speaking, who I am. It's hard to take a firm moral stance when you're as close to a live-and-let-live mentality as one can ever actually be without giving up one's own identity. But the fact that we've got it into our minds that, unless the baby is precisely the one you want, carrying it is a disease  which needs to be "cured". One female poster called any limitation on abortion an "attack on bodily sovereignty" and "forcing women to essentially be blood donors for 9 months".

Now, I've always been in the "I'd never abort" crowd, but being male that's easy for me to say as the closest I ever get to being pregnant comes from eating too much red meat. Even then, respecting the right to abort when the child is actually in-viable or the mother's life would be put at risk is an easy step to take. I've argued long and loud when I was younger for total legality and freedom of this particular choice. It's funny that it's the language of what was, for a long time, my own side, is what's convinced me to be about as anti-abortion as I'll likely ever become.

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