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  1. #1
    SamanthaCobalt
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    Question Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Ok so most of us can agree that abortion is WRONG
    but...not always?

    The arguement that i'm trying to put forth here is as follows:

    Is Abortion considered the Right Choice if you are a drug taking,16-year old who will have to give up your whole future to nurture the child?

    Everyone has the right to live, but if giving this baby the chance to do so will not only mess up the teenager's life who will then in response be unable to take care of the baby's needs but also result in making the child's life miserable (poor,violent,neglected,abused in some cases, or left for adoption) would it make abortion the right choice in that case?
    And that doesn't just apply to the scenario mentioned above, but also let's say if a girl got pregnant and her health is poor, should she risk her life and have the baby anyway? And what if it was a woman who already has kids and giving birth will probably be at the toll of her own life. Should she give the baby her life and leave her kids motherless?

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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    It still comes down to how you see the person-hood of a fetus unless you are an advocate of mercy killing adolescent children growing up with drug addicted parents. If you see a fetus as a full person, then it is morally the same act. hey, you are saving them the trouble they will no doubt have later on right?

    I don't see an early fetus as a full person, I see it more like a potential person that every day becomes more of a full person. I don't even see a baby or a child as a full person in certain respects. So how far back do you go to say "at this stage there is no justification for termination of life."

    I don't think its an easy question and its been discussed many times here but you should definitely have a go at it. I just wanted to have you think about why you think its OK to terminate a fetus, but not a child of say 3 years of age because you are fairly sure their life will not be a happy one under the current circumstances.
    Feed me some debate pellets!

  3. #3
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by SamanthaCobalt View Post
    Is Abortion considered the Right Choice if you are a drug taking,16-year old who will have to give up your whole future to nurture the child?
    A drug-taking 16 year old doesn't seem like someone overly concerned about their future, nor do they seem like someone with the capacity for nurturing a child, nor the insight to understand that they ought to provide such things for a child.

  4. #4
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    A drug-taking 16 year old doesn't seem like someone overly concerned about their future, nor do they seem like someone with the capacity for nurturing a child, nor the insight to understand that they ought to provide such things for a child.
    I don't quite understand this argument. The probable lack of care the mother would give to the potential future child is used to justify literally destroying that potential future child? Abortion literally destroys every potential person the fetus could grow into. That seems contradictory; if you truly care about the probable potential person this child grows into, and that motivates you to consider the quality of life it would have, why would you ever permit destroying that probable potential person?

    And that doesn't just apply to the scenario mentioned above, but also let's say if a girl got pregnant and her health is poor, should she risk her life and have the baby anyway? And what if it was a woman who already has kids and giving birth will probably be at the toll of her own life. Should she give the baby her life and leave her kids motherless?
    Let's flip that around. Suppose the mother is very healthy, financially well-off, and so forth. Now suppose that the mother learns her pregnancy is certain to fail--say, the mother has some rare condition that doesn't impact any other aspect of her health--unless she undertakes a procedure that will result in her--the mother--being poor and unhealthy, and might risk her life.

    I would hope the mother would have the moral fortitude to risk her health and her life for the sake of her child. If the mother has other children, then the issue becomes thornier, but I don't think I could fault someone who makes the choice that keeps the most number of his or her children alive.
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by CliveStaples View Post
    I don't quite understand this argument.
    It's not so much an argument against the OP a statement about the caricature presented in the OP. The average persons seeking abortions are drug-taking 16 year olds who are super-concerned about their own future? Give me a ****ing break. A person might as well start a thread claiming that the average Christian's beliefs in God are just like believing in Santa.

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  7. #6
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    It's not so much an argument against the OP a statement about the caricature presented in the OP. The average persons seeking abortions are drug-taking 16 year olds who are super-concerned about their own future? Give me a ****ing break. A person might as well start a thread claiming that the average Christian's beliefs in God are just like believing in Santa.
    I see what you did there, and I thoroughly approve.

    But I think that the drug-addled 16 year old who seeks an abortion is thinking about the future--at least, her own. That she is giving proper weight to the interest of her (future) child is less clear.
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  8. #7
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by SamanthaCobalt View Post
    Ok so most of us can agree that abortion is WRONG
    but...not always?

    The arguement that i'm trying to put forth here is as follows:

    Is Abortion considered the Right Choice if you are a drug taking,16-year old who will have to give up your whole future to nurture the child?

    Everyone has the right to live, but if giving this baby the chance to do so will not only mess up the teenager's life who will then in response be unable to take care of the baby's needs but also result in making the child's life miserable (poor,violent,neglected,abused in some cases, or left for adoption) would it make abortion the right choice in that case?
    Please support that death is better than adoption.

    And that doesn't just apply to the scenario mentioned above, but also let's say if a girl got pregnant and her health is poor, should she risk her life and have the baby anyway?
    This scenario involves 1% or less of all abortions. So...

    1) It is irrelevant when discussing whether or not abortion should be an elective method of birth control.
    2) In just about all states and just about all cases, it is agreed that if the mother's health cannot sustain the birth, then abortion is a necessary medical response. I don't know of any pro-life advocacy groups that promote birth of a child even though the mother will die.

    The fact of the matter is, adopted children are more likely to live in neighborhoods that are safe, have amenities and are in good physical condition than are non-adopted children. To suggest that it is better then for a child to die...and this be decided by a raving 16 yr old who is inexperienced, drug addicted, self-absorbed...well, it just doesn't sound too reasonable to me and seems nearly impossible to adequately defend.

    An irresponsible girl/woman who gets pregnant doesn't have to keep the child. In fact, I'd argue that they probably shouldn't keep the child. Giving the child up for adoption is a much better solution than aborting for selfish reasons.
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  9. #8
    SamanthaCobalt
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    An irresponsible girl/woman who gets pregnant doesn't have to keep the child. In fact, I'd argue that they probably shouldn't keep the child. Giving the child up for adoption is a much better solution than aborting for selfish reasons.
    I totally agree with the part about the mother having to give up the child, there's so many cases like that at my school and although some have families that support them and help them, there are those who end up having the child without knowing what they're getting into and the way they handle things really makes it seem like the child is better off dead then living the life they are now.

  10. #9
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    This scenario involves 1% or less of all abortions. So...

    1) It is irrelevant when discussing whether or not abortion should be an elective method of birth control.
    Wrongful execution involves a small percentage cases of capital punishment. Does that mean the scenario where a person is executed for a murder they did not commit is irrelevant in a discussion concerning whether or not capital punishment should be an elective method of punishment in the United States?

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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    Wrongful execution involves a small percentage cases of capital punishment. Does that mean the scenario where a person is executed for a murder they did not commit is irrelevant in a discussion concerning whether or not capital punishment should be an elective method of punishment in the United States?
    No. Capital punishment as it is practiced in the United States ought to be stopped IMO because of that margin of error.
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  12. #11
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    No. Capital punishment as it is practiced in the United States ought to be stopped IMO because of that margin of error.
    Ok, so do you agree that a low percentage of an otherwise relevant circumstance does not in and of itself entirely remove the relevance of that circumstance?

  13. #12
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    It isn't any particular # or statistic Dio...it's the reasoning process itself. We are saying "One ought to believe the conclusion because of this reason". So let's examine the arguments.

    These are the two arguments broken down:



    Abortion

    Conclusion: Abortion ought to be allowed.
    Reason: 1% of all abortions are a result of a medical emergency

    The argument: Elective abortions ought to be allowed because 1% of all abortions are a result of a medical emergency arising from the birth of the child.


    My point #2 in the post you quoted further expanded on the idea of "medical emergency" vs "elective birth control."



    Capital Punishment

    Conclusion: Capital Punishment in the US ought to be outlawed.
    Reason: 1% of all Capital Punishment cases involve the wrongful execution of an innocent person being confused with the actual perpetrator of the crime.

    The argument: Capital Punishment in the United States should be stopped because 1% of all executions are wrongful executions (innocent people being sentenced insetad of the actual criminal).




    Summary

    In the abortion issue, the reason does not support the conclusion. A medical emergency is not an elective form of birth control...it is a medical emergency. In the capital punishment issue we have the lives of innocent people at stake and we value the lives of innocent people in this country, especially when they do not need to be ended (people guilty of a capital offense can be imprisoned for the rest of their lives).

    In the former argument (abortion) the reason offered is entirely irrelevant to the conclusion because the reason has absolutely nothing to do with "elective birth control." If the conclusion were instead "Abortion for medical emergencies ought to be allowed" it would be a different story...for the reason would then be actually supporting the conclusion. But as it stands, as it was originally stated, it just doesn't.

    In the latter argument the reason for outlawing CP is directly linked to the conclusion. The prescriptive assumption is the value of innocent life (which is in itself, yet anothe reason for the conclusion of course). The latter argument is adequately supported by the stated reason, the former argument is not.


    -------


    It's interesting that you bring this up now. I've told the staff that I'm currently working on a paper "All about evidence (or 'Why should I believe it?')", it is currently about 33% done and I hope to have it posted next week.
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  14. #13
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    It isn't any particular # or statistic Dio...it's the reasoning process itself.
    Yes, I agree, which is why I took issue with your reasoning and the statistic YOU introduced. You said that BECAUSE the percentage was so small, the scenario was irrelevant. (See the bit I orginally quoted, and note that I didn't disagree with your 2nd point, which is why I didn't quote it).

    Now, if you meant that because no one condones forbidding abortion in the scenario described it's not relevant, then you should simply said that and left the percentage bit out. You could have said "In just about all states and just about all cases, it is agreed that if the mother's health cannot sustain the birth, then abortion is a necessary medical response. I don't know of any pro-life advocacy groups that promote birth of a child even though the mother will die, so I don't see that your scenario is relevant when discussing whether or not abortion should be an elective method of birth control.", but you didn't say that. You said "This scenario involves 1% or less of all abortions, so it is irrelevant when discussing whether or not abortion should be an elective method of birth control." which means that because the scenario itself is so uncommon, it's not worth considering.

  15. #14
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    You are right. It doesn't matter if it is 1% or if it is 99%...if this # represents medical emergencies and it is being used to support elective birth control, it is bad reasoning. All we really need to do to refute the argument is point out that medical emergencies =/= elective birth control. So in that sense, my response could have been worded better (as you have pointed out). I think I posted the statistic because it's a knee-jerk reaction to the typical pro-abortion argument offering rare instances to support the whole.

    However, let's examine the issue of 1% in each case. I think there is still a sound argument that can be said against abortion here that cannot be said of capital punishment when using the 1%.

    The 1% represents a particular segment of the subject in our argument. Specifically, when we say 1% in the abortion scenario...we are speaking of only of those women who we know are going to be harmed during the pregnancy or the delivery and would be better off (health wise) by aborting the fetus. We know who these women are. We can separate them from the rest of the 99%. It is how we are able to both recommend and justify this segment of "all those who get abortions" to get an abortion. This 1% does NOT represent the rest of the women who have abortions.

    When we say 1% in the capital punishment issue, we referencing unknown persons. We don't know how they are, but we do know that they exist and by executing known capital offenders we are also putting to death innocent people. Because we do not know who this 1% is (because they are found out after the fact), this 1% DOES represent a potentiality in 100% of the entire group of people being executed.

    In the abortion issue we have actual representation. In the capital punishment issue we have potential representation. To be more clear: in the abortion issue we know that there is a difference between the 1% and the rest of the 99%, the two are not the same. Each person having an abortion must be either the 1% or the 99%. But in the capital punishment issue the 1% can be any of the 100% of those being executed. Each person can potentially be an innocent person (due to our flawed, but admittedly, best possible legal system).

    What this means is the following as it pertains to both arguments (offering the pro side for abortion and against for capital punishment to show the distinction of use of 1%):


    Abortion:

    Abortion ought to be allowed for all women because 1% of those women face medical emergencies during pregnancy or child birth.


    The 1% does not represent all women having abortions. This argument is not compelling because this 1% is irrelevant to the 99% who happens to be the real subject of the argument (their well-being was being said to be represented by the 1%).

    Let's raise it to 90%...

    Abortion ought to be allowed for all women because 90% of those women face medical emergencies during pregnancy or child birth.

    We have a different argument now. This argument becomes compelling! We have enough of the segment of women who will be placed in harms way through pregnancy or child birth. This 90% can be said to represent nearly all women! So much in fact, that we have reason to believe that the very act of child birth (or pregnancy) is a very dangerous situation. And when it comes to reasonable harm (of which, 90% certainly is), we have not only the right but an obligation to protect ourselves and our society. If it were the case that 90% of all women will die during pregnancy or child birth, then it is the case that abortion would be made legal in this country with very little resistance IMO. It would be considered by virtually everybody to be an extremely risky, dangerous (and perhaps even irresponsible) act as anything that has a 90% to result in death does.

    It matters here whether 1% of women will risk their lives during child birth or if 90% of women will. If the former, then child birth itself isn't necessarily all that risky (especially considering we can foresee or predict the outcome and make adjustments...such as recommending aborting the fetus). But in the latter (the 90% scenario), the act itself is quite risky. The argument has changed based on the risk factor of the act that the subject is involved in.


    Capital Punishment:

    Capital punishment ought to be outlawed for all people because we will wrongfully execute an innocent person 1% of the time.


    The 1% does potentially represent all people being executed.

    Let's raise it to 90%...

    Capital punishment ought to be outlawed for all people because we will wrongfully execute an innocent person 90% of the time.

    The argument doesn't change. It is true that we are significantly less accurate in our judicial system, but what stays the same here is the loss of innocent life. Whether it is 1 innocent life or 90 innocent lives, an innocent should never be lost when it doesn't need to be (we can incarcerate for life those found guilty...thus allowing time for the innocent to be found)...this was the prescriptive/value assumption identified previously. Of course, one could attack this additional reason that an innocent life should always be protected, but that's a different issue and is really irrelevant to the argument's comparable use of the 1% stat to the abortion issue.

    Again, it comes down to how the statistic is being applied. It is true that the statistic can be used improperly, but it is also true that the statistic itself can be irrelevant in one argument but relevant in another (as I believe I have shown in this post).
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  16. #15
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    You are right. It doesn't matter if it is 1% or if it is 99%.
    Awesome. That's all I needed to hear, because that's all I was concerned with. I agree with you that the scenario isn't relevant, and I agree because the scenario isn't something pro-choice advocates anyway (that's why I said I didn't disagree with your point #2 earlier). If "X" isn't relevant, it's because of the context that "X" does or does not provide, not because "X" is rare.

    Also, as Sig pointed out before, if you'd spend more time addressing what a person says rather than what you think they're arguing beyond what they've said, you'd save yourself and everyone else an awful lot of reading/typing.

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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    As pointed out further into the post...

    However, let's examine the issue of 1% in each case. I think there is still a sound argument that can be said against abortion here that cannot be said of capital punishment when using the 1%.

    Meaning just because it is 1% doesn't mean it cannot be applicable in an argument. I explain how it is irrelevant when it comes to the abortion issue but it is relevant when it comes to capital punishment.

    ---------- Post added at 03:58 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:58 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    Also, as Sig pointed out before, if you'd spend more time addressing what a person says rather than what you think they're arguing beyond what they've said, you'd save yourself and everyone else an awful lot of reading/typing.
    The 1% objection I made (and you correcting that) has absolutely no bearing on this.
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  18. #17
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    As pointed out further into the post...

    However, let's examine the issue of 1% in each case. I think there is still a sound argument that can be said against abortion here that cannot be said of capital punishment when using the 1%.

    Meaning just because it is 1% doesn't mean it cannot be applicable in an argument. I explain how it is irrelevant when it comes to the abortion issue but it is relevant when it comes to capital punishment.
    I know you did, and you're wrong. Whether or not an occurrence of "X" is rare is not, in and of itself, enough to say that "X" is irrelevant to a discussion.

    The scenario is "if a girl got pregnant and her health is poor" or "sick, pregnant girls".

    You said "This scenario [sick, pregnant girls] involves 1% or less of all abortions, so it is irrelevant when discussing whether or not abortion should be an elective method of birth control.", which is you saying that because instances of "sick, pregnant girls" are rare, "sick, pregnant girls" isn't worth considering in the argument.

    This is no different than me saying "This scenario [wrongful execution] involves 1% or less of all executions, so it is irrelevant when discussing whether or not capital punishment should be an elective method of punishment." Obviously the fact that "wrongful execution" is rare doesn't mean that wrongful executions have no relevance in a discussion about capital punishment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    The 1% objection I made (and you correcting that) has absolutely no bearing on this.
    Bearing on what?

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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    I know you did, and you're wrong. Whether or not an occurrence of "X" is rare is not, in and of itself, enough to say that "X" is irrelevant to a discussion.

    The scenario is "if a girl got pregnant and her health is poor" or "sick, pregnant girls".

    You said "This scenario [sick, pregnant girls] involves 1% or less of all abortions, so it is irrelevant when discussing whether or not abortion should be an elective method of birth control.", which is you saying that because instances of "sick, pregnant girls" are rare, "sick, pregnant girls" isn't worth considering in the argument.

    This is no different than me saying "This scenario [wrongful execution] involves 1% or less of all executions, so it is irrelevant when discussing whether or not capital punishment should be an elective method of punishment." Obviously the fact that "wrongful execution" is rare doesn't mean that wrongful executions have no relevance in a discussion about capital punishment.
    This is incorrect and misunderstands what the 1% represents (actual vs potential representation of a group) and how it changes the argument in one yet not in the other.

    Bearing on what?
    Dio: Also, as Sig pointed out before, if you'd spend more time addressing what a person says rather than what you think they're arguing beyond what they've said, you'd save yourself and everyone else an awful lot of reading/typing.


    In other words, your "observation" is wholly irrelevant and inapplicable here. And the fact that you think both posts contain the same argument appears to me, like you need to heed your own, misplaced advice here.
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  20. #19
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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    This is incorrect and misunderstands what the 1% represents (actual for potential representation of a group) and how it changes the argument.
    No it isn't. It's you misunderstanding what I'm saying about what you said and how you said it. You didn't make all those clarifications in the original statement. You said that because "X" is rare, "X" isn't relevant. That's not true. Now, if by your clarification you are correcting your original statement, then that's fine and I accept that. But if that's what you meant the first time, you should have said that the first time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Dio: Also, as Sig pointed out before, if you'd spend more time addressing what a person says rather than what you think they're arguing beyond what they've said, you'd save yourself and everyone else an awful lot of reading/typing.

    In other words, your "observation" is wholly irrelevant and inapplicable here.
    Not really. Your responses are you thinking I'm arguing against the pro-choice position when in fact I'm quite sympathetic to the arguments you're otherwise making (as indicated directed to you at least 3 times now). I only used capital punishment because that's the first thing to come to mind, but you're making capital punishment/abortion arguments because you think I'm trying to defeat your pro-choice position by invoking capital punishment. I'm not.

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    Re: Can Abortion be Justified by Circumstance?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    No it isn't. It's you misunderstanding what I'm saying about what you said and how you said it. You didn't make all those clarifications in the original statement.
    Of course I didn't. That's why I admitted it could have been worded better and THEN created a different argument to illustrate how the 1% could be legitimately used. YOU are not reading carefully what is being said here Dio.

    You said that because "X" is rare, "X" isn't relevant. That's not true. Now, if by your clarification you are correcting your original statement, then that's fine and I accept that. But if that's what you meant the first time, you should have said that the first time.
    ....we aren't talking about the "first time". That issue was squashed, hashed out, completed, is kaput. It's the 2nd argument that apparently, you couldn't bother yourself with reading...

    Not really. Your responses are you thinking I'm arguing against the pro-choice position when in fact I'm quite sympathetic to the arguments you're otherwise making (as indicated directed to you at least 3 times now).
    ....wrong again. I'm not thinking anything of the sort. You are arguing beyond what I've said and then magically telling me what I'm thinking...when it isn't what I'm thinking at all.

    I only used capital punishment because that's the first thing to come to mind, but you're making capital punishment/abortion arguments because you think I'm trying to defeat your pro-choice position by invoking capital punishment. I'm not.
    I'm not thinking anything of the sort "Mr. Psychic." I'm illustrating how the 1% can be effectively used in one scenario yet not in another as well as just because it is used to represent a smaller segment, is insufficient as a means to evaluate a particular argument and instead we need to know what the 1% represents, how it represents and if it changes the argument by increasing that segment size.

    Stick to what is actually said...not with what you think I'm thinking. Minding your own advice would be greatly beneficial to you at this point.
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