Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The puzzling silence of the unborn human community

This news story is about a man who had hired a hit man to injure his pregnant girlfriend to the point that she miscarried. Fortunately, the hit man was actually an undercover cop. The man was found guilty of solicitation to commit manslaughter and sentenced to 76 months in jail. In the state of Washington, a "viable fetus" counts in such a charge. In other words, the state recognized the humanity of the unborn human in this instance. This story brings up something that occurs to me from time to time, and that is the lack of outrage from the unborn human community over these kinds of stories that recognize their humanity in one instance, but then ignores it in another instance.

The unborn human community (UHC from here on) suffers an image problem in our day and age. The very definition of their humanity is subject to the whims of the state and to their mothers like no one else in our society. Can you imagine any other group or community tolerating having their humanity being defined so arbitrarily? Why doesn't the UHC do something about this? Why don't they rally to have their rights recognized? With so many victims groups out there, you'd think that the UHC would have organized something by now.

For instance, the UHC could contest that the arbitrary nature of their rights are largely based on their location - namely, in their mothers' wombs. This necessity of human reproduction is totally beyond their control. If they could pick and choose which womb they could grow in, don't you think that they'd pick the womb of someone who would be willing to carry them to term? Thus, why are they being made to feel disenfranchised over something that they have no control over?

Another thing that the UHC could protest is the death sentences that are carried out against them by their mothers (and often other people responsible or otherwise connected to their existence), and often for the most arbitrary of reasons. For instance, they're not the gender that the parents want. Or they MIGHT have some sort of medical condition (diagnoses HAVE been wrong, even for those made of the born community). Or, their birth would complicate their mother's or father's life in some form or fashion. Or the mother might not be able to "handle" giving birth. In other words, all reasons that the member of the UHC had no control over, and yet is being made to pay the ultimate price for it. Their only crime? An inconvenient existence.
Boy, I'm starting to feel really outraged over the lack of response from the UHC. Injustices are being levied against them all around, and yet not a peep from them.

Now let's look at the issue of embryonic stem cell research and the lack of reaction from the UHC over this controversial issue. Here the very young members of the UHC are being sacrificed much like guinea pigs for the sake of scientific research. An embryo, the youngest of the UHC, is destroyed in the process of doing this form of stem cell research. The UHC should be in an uproar, because it's not just the rights of these very young members that are being violated, they're also being exploited and executed all for the sake of science! The UHC should be bringing up the fact that there are alternatives available to the usage of embryos in stem cell research, and none of them are fatal to them.

Adult stem cells, for instance. Also, the placentas that remain after one of the members of the UHC leaves their ranks. Both of these forms of stem cells actually work while the embryonic stem cells are yet to work at all, despite the promise that they'll be so adaptable that they can become any cell that is necessary. Thus, the UHC should be all over this like flies to honey so as to protect the members of their own community from the scientists' instruments.

But no, the UHC is still stone silent. How big an outrage is it going to take, one has to wonder, for the UHC to say something - anything - over the many violations that are being put against them? If these threats to their rights and to their very lives isn't enough to rouse them, then nothing will.

By now you've caught on to the point that I've been making: The UHC does not say anything because it can't. The UHC is years away from even forming basic sentences, much less grasping concepts such as rights and violations and outrages. The UHC, in other words, is wholly dependent upon the ranks of the already-born. Hopefully you've seen what an unenviable position that the unborn are in: Their existences - and their very lives - hinge on the whims of those whom they should be able to fully depend on.

If those they depend on fail to live up to their responsibilities, then it is the UHC that pays the price. During their 9-month existences, the UHC lives silently, and they can die silently, without a word or whimper of protest over events that they have absolutely no control over. If that realization doesn't break your heart, I don't know what will.

The UHC, then, is totally helpless and totally at the mercy of others who may or may not have their best interests at heart. Imagine belonging to any other group in which your humanity was defined so casually that it could be turned off and on like a light switch. Wouldn't this arbitrary definition of your humanity scare the hell out of you?

For the supporters of legalized abortion, the heart of their argument is the "right to choose" - that is, the mother must have the full right to choose whether she wants to carry her pregnancy to term or to end it. That's it. There are no exceptions to this, and the humanity of the unborn is irrelevant to the question; so irrelevant in fact that the unborn are usually defined as a "fetus" so as to dehumanize it in such a way that making this "choice" doesn't look so unpleasant.

For opponents of legalized abortion, the heart of their argument is the humanity of the unborn. They recognize that if they don't constantly remind others of the humanity of the unborn, then very few will. For them, the issue regarding abortion is not so much "choosing", but making the right choice.

A pregnant woman can indeed choose to have an abortion. Just like someone can choose to set a building on fire, or can choose to "cook the books" so as to embezzle from a company. Yes, people can choose to do these things. However, merely having the option to do something does not mean that they should do it. The issue of the humanity of the unborn can - and MUST - be discussed.

But the UHC is not in a position to discuss the issue. By the time they are able to discuss the issue, they will have been born for many years, which would makes their pleas to be born a moot point. No, only the rest of us can discuss the issue of legalized abortion for the unborn when they are still unborn. Many a brave soul fought for the humanity and the rights of slaves, of women, of immigrants, and many other groups that were greatly wronged, and their bravery is recognized and rewarded today. Now new brave souls must rise to the occasion today for the unborn, a group that won't be able to thank them for many years. They must be the voice for the ultimate group of the voiceless. History judges the civilizations of the past by how they treat the powerless among them. How will history judge us?

1 comment:

JB said...

I'll give you a reason why people have two minds on this stuff. It is manslaughter to kill a WANTED unborn, and it is abortion to kill an UNWANTED unborn. It is the intent of the mother that decides the legality of the situation. So the focus is not on the rights of the unborn, but the rights of the mother.

It's a classic solution for a society rooted in relative morality.