Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Ellen Goodman, a noted supporter of "a woman's right to choose", has this to say about the decision of fertility doctors to help the mother of octuplets to conceive and deliver (from "The ethical failures of fertility treatment") :
If, as we are told so far, Nadya Suleman was implanted with eight embryos left over from her earlier treatments, it is something akin to malpractice. If she wanted all eight implanted knowing she would refuse to terminate any, it's close to mal-mothering.

The reason why we haven't seen Nadya's fertility doctor on "Larry King Live" (yet) is that it's against all guidelines to implant more than one or two embryos in a woman under 35. Given our experience with the extraordinary high risk of multiple pregnancies for mothers and babies, anyone who endangers patients ought to lose their license.

This is more than an individual decision.

Is it? If you read through the entire piece, Goodman seems to be saying several things: (1) the decision to help the mother conceive is questionable because the mother was unemployed; (2) she already had several (6) children; (3) such procedures put the mother and the child at risk and (4) the $cost to society is very high.

I assume that all this is what leads Goodman to call for a discussion of some of those very ethical issues that, as she says, "make us queasy."

So, I'm wondering, why can we question this woman's "right to choose" and "children on demand" and sound an alarm about the ethical and moral issues involved for both the woman and the doctor; but we must not ever even begin to question the concept of "abortion on demand"--even though some of the same ethical issues are relevant--lest we be labeled anti-woman? As far as feminists of her kind are concerned, no discussion can be permitted.

I submit that the entire societal "ethical" issue involved in both instances entirely disappears when there is one simple consideration:

An individual woman has the perfect right to choose what she does with her body--when that right does not infringe on anyone else to pay--financially or otherwise--for that choice.

I have no serious problem with octuplet mom doing what she did--I don't necessarily approve of her choice; nor do I have a problem with her or anyone else having as many children as she wants--as long as she does not expect me to pay for it. By paying for her choice--or being forced to pay for it-- I am in conflict which my own ethical code.

Likewise, any individual woman can choose to have an abortion; and anyone who wants to, may help her financially to do so; but why should I or anyone who thinks this is ethically and morally wrong be forced to pay for her individual choice?

Paying for something automatically means you have given your sanction for it.

If that is not the case and perfectly obvious to almost everyone, then why is President Obama simply outraged at the incredible bonuses and outlandish salaries of CEO's and executives of companies that have received Federal bailout money? He is annoyed at their irresponsible, unethical and inconsiderate behavior toward American taxpayers who are footing the bill. And rightly so. I could care less about their irresponsibility and generally bad business practices--as long as they are the ones who have to pay the consequences, not me.

President Obama is not noticably outraged that taxpayer money is being used to fund abortions for irresponsible women who can't be bothered to use birth control; or, if they can't afford birth control, to behave responsibly. In this day and age, there is NO EXCUSE for not being aware of birth control, its consequences, or its ethical issues. Our entire society has been immersed in a "culture war" about the issue for many decades now. Only an amazing level of entitlement; supreme indifference to reality; or catastrophic stupidity lead to an unwanted pregnancy in the 21st century in the U.S.

Forcing Americans who believe it is morally reprehensible to abort a baby for any reason, to support a "woman's right to choose" is only adding insult to injury. Just as it is to pay for octuplet mom's irresponsible, narcissistic and ethically challenged choice to have litter after litter of human children. I'm sure there are people out there who are willing to support her "right to choose" (in fact, I'll bet there's a $$$ million book/movie deal soon to be announced); but I don't particularly want to, do you?

And that option ought to be MY right to choose. Somehow the Pro-choice movement has got it wrong (why am I not surprised since today's feminist movement is so completely f***ed up?).

These ethical and moral issues ARE individual decisions and of right, ought to be. The government has no right to use my money to support either abortion or fertility treatments (or birth control or male enhancement etc. etc.). These are all personal, private decisions and the consequences of them ought to be the burden of the individual making them.

When you conceptualize the problem in this way, all of a sudden both positions: pro-choice and pro-life are suddenly politically compatible.

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