Pilot Letter: Not a simple matter

https://www.pilotonline.com/opinion/letters/vp-ed-lete-0821-20190821-55eyt2lxjffr7ddkofkm7va4pe-story.html

The writer of this letter appears to be confused. He addresses the philosophical question, What is life? while ignoring the observable fact that a particular life can be traced back to the moment of conception, and no further.

Put another way, the distinction between life and non-life involves one set of philosophical questions, whereas the identification of the moment a certain life begins involves a different set of questions.

Biologists consider eggs and sperm to be living things, as is the earliest product of fertilization. However, it is when fertilization occurs that the development of a new individual organism begins.

Contrary to the LTE, that is the significance of the moment conception.

14 thoughts on “Pilot Letter: Not a simple matter

  1. I believe that this sentence from the letter explains his opinion quite well: ““Life begins at conception” is an arbitrary statement that serves agendas for religious groups that want to control others’ lives. It is not a scientific statement.”

    Scientifically speaking, a new organism does form at conception. But until such time that said fetus can survive without the support of the mother, it is not a “life”.

    I will always stand by the choice of women to do with their bodies what they see as best for their personal situations. It is not up to anyone to judge the choices they make. And it would be criminal to take away a woman’s right to choose. – IMHO

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Viability would be a compromise. Except that if a woman is that far along, 24 weeks or so, her decision to abort is not about convenience or whimsy. Circumstances, medical problems or a host of other reasons would be weighing heavily on what would most likely be a much wanted child.

      The current drive towards personhood at fertilization is extreme and fraught with issues. There have been a few attempts at prosecution for miscarriages.

      Might as well register the womb with the state and keep coital records to determine dates of fertilization.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. RE: “Scientifically speaking, a new organism does form at conception. But until such time that said fetus can survive without the support of the mother, it is not a ‘life’.”

      Fetal development continues after birth, after the newly formed organism is no longer a fetus. In general, too, human offspring cannot survive fully on their own without support (or reproduce) until they reach adulthood.

      These considerations make birth an unlikely candidate for the moment life begins. One wouldn’t want to say, for example, that a pre-pubescent female is not an individual human being, or not a living thing at all.

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      1. Comparing an actual child is who about to enter puberty to a fetus that is still under development is a complete red herring to a choice a woman has to make. The important word there is CHOICE.

        Third trimester abortions should only be considered if the life of the mother or viability of the fetus is in jeopardy. I stand by the axiom that abortion should be safe, rare and legal. And not up to the whimsical review of men who only want to control women.

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      2. RE: “Comparing an actual child is who about to enter puberty to a fetus that is still under development is a complete red herring to a choice a woman has to make.”

        I don’t see how it is a red herring. The concept of stages of development is central to the significance of conception as I have been discussing it so far. It is the very thing I accuse the original LTE of ignoring.

        I’d be more inclined to think of public policy on abortion as peripheral to the science which shows that a human life begins at conception.

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        1. …” the science which shows that a human life begins at conception.” Your opinion and you are entitled to it. I don’t agree. And to remain civil I will leave ti there.

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  2. You pretty much summed up my thoughts on this topic with this statement:

    “I will always stand by the choice of women to do with their bodies what they see as best for their personal situations. It is not up to anyone to judge the choices they make. And it would be criminal to take away a woman’s right to choose. – IMHO”

    I thank you for that, and I would hope that are most people understand that a decision to end a pregnancy isn’t a thing where all women feel the same way about it.

    Some women I’m sure have a very hard time with it, while others never seem to labor (no pun) over their decision. But, many women immediately find out they’re pregnant and know what they are going to do, DO IT and move along. Of all my close friends only two have made me aware of their intentions – one a young girl and one a women in middle-age who did not want to raise another child. Both couples were fully on-board, and being one of the very few people who knew of their decision – they never indicated in any way to me that they regretted their CHOICE.

    Things change as we get older, and perhaps they have had regrets at some point – but, don’t we all move along in life and at time wish we’d done this or that, or NOT done this or that? Sure, we do. But, these two women never told me if they regretted it, and I knew them well enough to know they’d have discussed it.

    As long as safe, legal abortions are available, I fully support women in their right to have the final say-so over their bodies. And, the minute ‘safe, legal abortions’ are deemed illegal, I will still support women who have to make the same type of choices. I say that, because this is not going to change and all pregnancies will not be welcomed. That is simply a fact that has been the case all my life and will continue.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I didn’t know which “Jane” you were. Apparently you are the real one. Or if this were the script for “Dances With Wolves”, you could be “woman with three names”. 🙊

      Welcome to the site. I am not in charge.

      Just like at home come to think of it.

      Don is the owner and has graciously allowed some liberals to post and debate. Of course he is a hunter and we might be target practice.

      Just kidding. Really.

      John Roberts was kind enough to show us how to start threads, etc. But I think you are an experienced poster if I recall.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I do not believe this is the same “Jane” from the Pilot comments section. “She” is vehemently opposed to a woman’s right to choose and would never have posted a comment such as this.

        Just an observation from one who sparred with “Jane” about many issues, including a woman’s right to choose.

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  3. Adam, I’m the ‘Jane’ from the old site, and ‘Jane’ was (and, still is) my middle name. I have always gone by Jane as opposed to my 1st name which is what most people called me at the old site. To make things even muddier, Initially loved on here with my middle name and last name, but didn’t write down the info. Soooo, I just signed in again as plain ole ‘jane’.

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    1. Wrong Jane. I was thinking of the “Jane Chavis” …um…”person”, not Lil…..Welcome aboard!

      One of my families closest friends shared your first name. I think you would have liked each other a lot.

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