“Debate: Sex, Contraception, Consequences” – The Dialogue Ep. 37

Debating the issues of premarital sex, contraception, and consequences.  Cal stands firm on the secular argument, going even further by casting doubt on the trustworthiness and credibility of Catholic teaching while Tim offers evidence that disproves the credibility of the secular argument


  1. Thanks Tim and Cal for the debate…sorry, Cal, but it was far worse than I expected.  This time you brought zero to the topic which was:  “Sex, contraception, consequences.”  Your opening remarks were toward the  Catholic Church?  For a smart young man who seeks science for answers, why would you not begin with science instead of something to the idea of:  Why does the Catholic Church think about sexuality and sexual intimacy and why do they think “everybody” wants to hear what they have to say since you don’t, as long as it isn’t hurting anyone?  It just sounded like you forgot to do your homework, so why not begin with a kick in the side. 
    IF you thought it necessary to start the debate with the Catholic Church, should you not have first given a good, thorough reading of Humanae Vitae  because, it is right there in black and white as to “why” the Church considers a topic.  So, my question is, have you read Humanae Vitae?  This is a link to this very brief but incredibly deep encyclical —
    I’m certain this tone isn’t jovial, but Cal, did you see Tim’s expression during or hear in Tim’s voice following your opening remarks?  This Vericat and perhaps others were in disbelief as well.  What happened?

  2. catholicchild  I’m not sure what you were expecting, to be honest. I mean, at any point did you think I was going to say something so good during the debate that it would shake your faith? Don’t be ridiculous, you’re holding me to an unfair standard. You didn’t like my opening statement or what I had to say. Well, that’s the point. Even if something I said did make you think “Maybe cal is right and the Chruch is wrong” would you admit it out loud? Of course you wouldn’t you’ve already made up your mind about this subject.

    And all due respect but please don’t say I brought nothing to the debate. I mean, do you not remember when I answered questions for you guys for about a half hour and what about all the arguments I made during the debate itself? You can say you didn’t like what I had to say, but don’t be dishonest and say I brought nothing to the debate. 

    Take care


  3. Great, great, great debate guys.  You know that I am extremely critical of this show – didn’t I say I wasn’t even going to listen to it anymore? But the quality of your conversation this time was top notch.  
    I do think that there was an interesting phenomenon on display.  
    Tim, your arguments frequently ranged into consequentialism.  You would say that the Catholic Church is right about something because there are objective, material consequences to not following Catholic teaching (e.g., increased rates of condom use actually increase STI rates.)  But this is a secular argument!  As a Catholic, my wife and I use NFP and not contraception because, at the most basic reason, Jesus Christ died for us.  If I believe Christ suffered torture, humiliation, and death for us how could I possibly do something to deliberately prevent a human life from forming?  I pray to God that I will someday be with Him in heaven and maybe then I will find out that contraception would have been A-OK, but my love for Jesus makes me very willing to err strongly on the side of not doing anything to diminish, prevent, thwart, or destroy a potential human life.  (We use NFP to space out our kids…if we weren’t willing at all to have more children, we would abstain, although we’re not as old as Tim so that would be really difficult. Not as difficult as dying on the Cross though.)
    Tim I’ve said before…I worry that by engaging in these debates you put your soul at risk.  Of course you go to confession way more than I do (unfortunately – I wish I could go more).  But there is such a danger, when trying to make an argument to people who disagree with Catholic teaching, that by putting yourself in the mindset to communicate with them you stray from Catholic teaching.  Please be very, very careful, my Brother in Christ.  I know that you offer materially consequentialist arguments because you are pretty sure religion won’t convince Cal (or other atheists).  And I think you’re right to do so, but please, please be careful.  If you cede too much in the argument there is no way to go back.  Can I just say that I was NOT at ALL convinced of the evil of contraception until I converted to Catholicism.  I do see a lot of costs to contraception and a lot of benefits to a non-contracepting marriage and broader culture, but at the end of the day we don’t contracept because I love Jesus (and my wife loves me and is willing to go along with me in this.)  That’s really it: it is solely my overwhelming gratitude and love for Jesus that causes me to live this way.
    And Cal…where is the consequentialism?  You subscribe to a form of utilitarianism (minimizing human suffering and so on)- your arguments ought to be based on consequences!  I didn’t hear any consequences in your argument!  Sorry, but Tim tore you apart on this, offering actual studies and data as to why things like condom use don’t actually achieve their stated aims.  I would have thought a reasonable response from you would be that we need better education on how to use condoms, and so on.  I mean I don’t think you’re right overall, but in the context of your argument that sort of thing would make sense.  What happened?
    I think your error, Cal, was in ceding the argument to Tim.  You opened with, “why ought we listen to the Catholic Church on this topic”?  But Tim offered a very convincing response: the Catholic Church has been consistently right on this topic.  Your response of what is essentially “well of course you’d say that” isn’t really an argument. The way this ought to work is that you offer a materialist standard that doesn’t require a religion to defend it, and then Tim plays defense and tries to explain why you still need the Church anyways. It’s freaking weird to see you ceding the offense at the beginning of the match.  I’m a little concerned Cal because as I’ve said before I do believe your intelligently inquisitive atheism is going to lead you into the arms of the Church eventually, especially if you ignore stupid predictions like that from random commenters like me.  So I don’t like that you basically lobbed a series of softball questions at Tim in this debate.  Next time I’d like to see you really rip into his arguments.  I think he needs that and it would be good for you as well.

  4. CalKane catholicchild I have to agree with Cal on this one.  I mean of course I agree overall with you catholic child.  But I think it’s a bit unreasonable for us to expect Cal to not be Cal.  I do think Cal could have done _better_ in the debate but so could Tim (see my comment).  I certainly don’t expect Cal to stop being himself. As Cal implies, I’m certain that I’ll never concede that Cal is right.  So I don’t expect him to convince me.  But I can still be objective in listening to Cal’s arguments.  As far as I can tell, in the context of Cal’s worldview most of what he said in this debate made sense.
    Remember Catholic Child that neither Tim, you , or I are going to convince Cal that he’s wrong.  That’s the Holy Spirit’s job.  That’s why I always root for Cal to make a really good argument.  Goodness and truth come from God, so the closer Cal gets to a good and true argument, the closer he is to conversion.  For the time being, I do agree with Cal that it’s unreasonable for us to expect him to blow us Catholics away with his atheist arguments.  I think in context he did a very good job of explaining and defending his point of view.

  5. Farmereighthirtyone Well, of course, you think Tim won the debate, how else did you think it was going to go? Did you really think there was a chance that I could convince you that the Church has it wrong on the subject of human sexuality and everything that comes with it?

    It’s also no surprise to me that you didn’t like my arguments. Again, what were the chances that you would walk away from the debate thinking “Wow, Cal really showed Tim what’s what and my faith is shaken”

    All I can hope for is that you enjoyed the debate which you seemed to so my work here is done haha 🙂

  6. Farmereighthirtyone CalKane 
    Really?  At both of you…Really???  Wow, where do I begin with your replies?  I have not much time because I volunteer at a Pro-baby/mommy/daddy/family resale shop, but I can at least begin with a few items.
    1.  Cal, if you are concerned about stating something that will perhaps “shake my Faith,” allow me to calm your concerns…I am quite certain that will not happen.  That wasn’t my comment.  Rather, you didn’t address the topic but instead did a kick in the side to the Catholic Church and that to me is street fighting not debating.  FARMER, I stand by this.  One who debates:
    a.  Researches both sides of the issue or premise.  The way to check out Church teaching/position is the encyclical that has been prophetic and address the error (of which there are none) one thinks they find within it; or,
      b.  After researching both sides, bring sound reasons backed by statistics of your side.
    I believe Cal did neither.
    FARMER, I disagree with your words to Tim.  This is a debate about a topic.  To me, the content is essential in two minds coming to an understanding  of truth…this is not necessarily a blow one or the other away with our argument (although, I must confess, Tim did a fine job of presenting a solid argument and refuting Cal’s weak:  Why should I listen to the Church?  I don’t care what happens in the privacy of bedrooms and you shouldn’t either.  And, the height of weakness, the:  Well, they need to be using it correctly, and then…  oy vey!  Cal presenting something beyond what he did to at least have us consider something he said is what I expect…not that it would alter what is.  
    Tim knows the job of the Holy Spirit…don’t condescend (is there humor in that…it wasn’t intended if there was).  Persons have intellects that need awakening by Truth.  The Catholic Church blows me away with the profundity of the Truth!  If I was not Catholic, and if someone sketched the Wisdom of Humanae Vitae on a screen before me, I may not like it, but I would have to at least acknowledge it makes some remarkable claims and was quite insightful!  The Holy Spirit works as Tim fulfills the mission he is given.  Reconsider standing between him and his work…he knows what he is doing most probably through his prayer, others prayers for him, and his Spiritual Advisor.
    Anyway, I do enjoy the interaction between the 2 gents!  God bless you all!

  7. Farmereighthirtyone CalKane catholicchild  Thanks man I’m glad you get what I’m saying 🙂

  8. Farmereighthirtyone CalKane 
    I just did a replay of the first 22 minutes, and so, Cal, what you are saying is basically the “atheist point of view is sex, contraception, and what people do and why they do it with whomever they do it no matter the consequences isn’t worth thinking about, discussing, debating, because everyone should just mind their own business.”  Do I have that right by the “atheist” position?

  9. catholicchild Farmereighthirtyone To be honest, there is no such thing as the atheist position on anything since atheism just describes people who don’t believe in God. But yeah you have it pretty much correct. What consenting adults do with their own bodies in the privacy of their own homes is no one else’s business. Obviously, there are exceptions to this rule (abortion being the main one) but yeah you have it pretty much spot on 🙂

  10. CalKane Farmereighthirtyone  
    Thank you, Cal!  So now we are getting somewhere.  But as a lover of science, does it not make sense to take a look into all of the consequences, ramifications, long-term complications, etc., of these behaviors?  Where is your thirst for the depths of this?  Your thirst for the philosophy, sociology, psychology, biology, chemical alterations, etc., of said topic?  That is what I was expecting to potentially gain some further insight into since you state you are so totally into science.  That is why I was so incredibly let down by your total lack of sharing and your stated disdain/lack of openness to information, statistics, and out and out beginning to end reasons with regard to said topic.  That is where I’m coming from on this side of ocean, does that make any sense?  You didn’t answer my question…have you read Humanae Vitae?  Thank you, by the way for responding.  I do enjoy you and Tim dialoging, your respect for each other, your really knowing so much of how the other thinks…it’s lively, enjoyable and entertaining!

  11. Melinda Selmys in her book “Sexual Authenticity: A Catholic Perspective of Homosexuality” said that the primary reason for our oversexualisation is loneliness.
    There have been studies showing that we do in fact need human interaction to be healthy – mentally, physically, and spiritually. Do you agree that our sexual culture is a product of loneliness?

  12. ChesterKhan44 I think loneliness has a lot to do with it, but I also think it’s part of a wider system of brokenness in our culture.  I think human brokenness contributes to sexual issues, which contributes to loneliness, which adds to the sexual issues, which contributes further to general human brokenness.  I think other components are a culture of narcissism, over-exposure to the human body (ads, on TV, etc) and an under-exposure of the human person (detachment, un-social “social” networking that replaces humanity with binary), a culture more and more imposed upon by authoritarian agencies, which contributes to feelings of vulnerability….and so on and so on.  SO I think loneliness is an operative component, but I also think it’s broader than that.  As complex as the problem is, I think the solution is simple, because it’s powerful enough to be simple: We must see ourselves through the lens of God’s love for us personally. That requires grace, cooperation, and understanding; it isn’t a switch we ourselves can just flip on.  But I think everything else falls into place for an individual when they achieve that understanding, and that leads to culture of healing over time.

  13. Farmereighthirtyone Hey there. Funny, I was hoping you’d actually catch this episode lol.  So I’m really glad you did, and I’m glad you enjoyed it.  Regarding some of your comments/statements:
    “Tim, your arguments frequently ranged into consequentialism…But this is a secular argument”
    That is correct.  And a couple of folks are calling me out for my strategy.  I am rethinking it.  But the reason why I do it is because I try to beat the opposers in their own camp.  This isn’t a debate against Cal, per se. I see it as a debate against any non-believer who watches it, and I want to invalidate, and best their argument on their own terms. If I try to best their argument on my own terms, which would involve theology, I’m speaking in a language they don’t understand, and the “psychological impact” of being bested in their own camp is no longer there.  They’d dismiss the loss as a fluke, they’d continue to believe their views and perspectives to be superior, because they would’t be able to comprehend exactly how they’ve been bested.  I argue the way I argue so that there is no excuse for not seeing the flaw in their thinking.  Now, they may not see it anyway, but if they don’t see it when I’m speaking their own language, they certainly won’t see it if I’m speaking mine.  I think most modern-day atheists are too far away from even basic truths, and including basic theology in my argument would be like talking to them in a foreign language.  Again, maybe it’s a limited strategy, or maybe it’s not limited, but not as good as an alternative strategy. I’m just explaining why my strategy is what it is.  In the “old days” I always brought theology to my arguments, and atheists were able to follow it.  These days that same strategy is like talking to a wall, because modern-day atheists are nothing like their “intellectual predecessors”.  I mean there are atheists bringing witch hunts to their arguments for Pete’s sake!  As out of touch with basic history as they are, they’re even more out of touch when it comes to the comprehension of basic theology.
    Now, that’s not to disrespect Cal. I’m talking about modern-day atheists in general—whether they’re what I call “Modern atheists” or “Classical atheists [in modern times]”.  Cal is more capable than his atheist peers, but he’s still 1000 miles departed from theology, where his peers may be 1500 miles departed lol.  So I don’t bring to the table what I know can’t be digested.  
    I’m open to hearing your input/feedback if you have some thoughts about improving my strategy. I always want to improve.  
    God be with you.

  14. I agree on all points, Tim. I would go just a bit farther and say we – especially Christians – ought to see others in thst same light, and treat them that way, too. That’s easier said than done, of course, but that is, I think, an answer.

  15. ChesterKhan44
    I just referenced you and Tim in Fr. Dugandzic’s homily comments.  Always great reading your comments and Tim’s replies.  God bless you abundantly, Khan!

  16. catholicchild JediMasterTim
    It’s hardly my own idea. I got it, not only from Melinda Selmys, but also Marc Barnes over at Bad Catholic. He writes:
    “St. Thomas Aquinas says we should assume the best in people. He does not call this a work of charity, as if it were a gift to our neighbor to assume the truth and integrity of their actions. He calls this a work of justice — a work due to every human being. (http://www.newadvent.org/summa/3060.htm)
    we doubt the goodness and authenticity of our neighbor’s actions, we
    abdicate our role as co-creators of their identity. We leave our
    brothers and sisters in the lurch, unable to really be who they are —
    for who they are is social, in need of our creative contribution. This
    is suspicion, the vicious opposite of a childlike faith in the
    authenticity of our neighbors, and it’s a tricky demon. It worms its way
    into everything. It whispers: “He didn’t really understand that book
    the way you did,” and “she isn’t really so committed to helping the poor — she just needs to feel accepted.”
    suspicious man is always triumphantly validated in his suspicions, for
    he plants in his neighbors the very failures of authenticity that he
    Source: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/badcatholic/2016/04/against-suspicion.html

  17. I thoroughly enjoy the dialogue, I did think a little bit that during the discussion that Cal sounded like he was playing devil’s advocate, even though he is coming from th opposite side, I think Cal gives the show valuable insights overall, but wasn’t really pushing Tim.
    Anyway it’s a really terrific show, and it’s very much appreciated.

  18. Fr Dugandzic said in a recent Credo episode that he’d have made some different arguments on this subject if he was debating Cal. Would Cal be interested in debating Fr Dugandzic on this issue some day? That would be interesting to watch, I think, especially since I’d imagine Father’s got a much better knowledge of NFP (since Tim himself admits he’s not an expert), plus the two of them could approach it from a more philosophical position etc.

  19. Cal, people are capable of refraining from sex.  A recent study has shown that teenagers having sex is at it’s lowest level in twenty years.  Why they are refraining wasn’t brought out.  Maybe it’s a backlash from the hypersexual society.  If something is in your face constantly, people tend to get sick of it.

  20. Pretty good show guys!
    While Cal did bring up some good points, I found it a bit odd that from the beginning he seemed more concerned with making the Catholic Church look foolish than trying to prove his side of the argument. Though, to be fair, he admitted he didn’t have strong feelings about “what people do in their bedrooms” and so perhaps his argument was more about pointing out what he disagrees with “the Catholic Church” and not argue about the moral implications of premarital sex, contraception and consequences from a secular point of view. I haven’t seen The Dialogue show before, so perhaps my expectations were off. 
    Towards the end Cal said people should listen to science but throughout the debate disregarded the science, facts, and stats Tim brought up. At one point saying, “I just don’t believe you.” Yet, provided none of his own. More notably in this regard, for me, was the brief discussion about “a clump of cells” not being a baby/child or that it is “a potential life”. Science tells us that the fertilize egg is alive and is human. Whether you call it a baby or a zygote it’s still a living human, with it’s own distinct DNA and set of chromosomes. There is no potential of life here, it is an actual living human organism. There is not a mysterious point between conception and birth at which a clump of cells with a potential for life transforms into a living human organism. 
    Overall, I really liked the show! I particularly enjoyed the spicy bits.

  21. KristaLynneH  Hey glad you enjoyed the show. A few things I want to respond to if you don’t mind 🙂

    “More notably in this regard, for me, was the brief discussion about “a clump of cells” not being a baby/child or that it is “a potential life”. Science tells us that the fertilize egg is alive and is human. Whether you call it a baby or a zygote it’s still a living human, with it’s own distinct DNA and set of chromosomes. There is no potential of life here, it is an actual living human organism”

    Yes, it has it’s own DNA and other things but calling it a living human being is still pretty confusing to me since there is no brain and therefore no thoughts, feelings, consciousness or anything else that make a human being able to do things that make us, well, human. I see no problem with calling it a “potential life” since that’s exactly what it is. It starts out with no human traits at all and then slowly over the course of 9 months develops more and more human features. If you consider an egg in the very early stages of fertilisation an actual living human being, then other things of the same complexity must also be considered living and worthy of our love and care as well.

  22. CalKane Hi Cal! I don’t mind at all 🙂
    Here’s the thing, the fertilized egg is one of the stages of human development; and so that is what all humans look like at that stage.  You and I looked like that.  A 23 week preemie looks different than a 12 month baby, and a 12 year old, and a 22 year old.  The more we grow and develop we look and act different and are capable of doing more things, in general. But we were living humans from conception.

    Why do you not considering it living or human?  Because it doesn’t have a brain at that stage?  It seems you’re putting the burden of proof on the little clump of cells incapable of thought (but not on science).  If it’s not alive or human how can it “slowly over the course of 9 months develop more and more human features”?  As far as not having human traits, it’s overwhelmingly obvious to me that human DNA is a defining trait of a human being.
    It’s alive because it’s growing and multiplying cells, a non-living thing cannot do that. It’s an organism just as you and I are.  It’s human because of, not only where it came from (a human egg and human sperm), it’s DNA.  It cannot have “potential life” if it is already living.  (Which it is.)

    Other types of organisms that have this complexity are important to a degree.  Though, I suppose, depending on what it is.  Humans need other organisms, like plants and animals, for survival.  However, human beings have intrinsic value and dignity.  A dog may be able to learn cause and effect, learn cues, and even be able to communicate to their human caretaker – but they will never be able to reason.  They will never be able to ponder the meaning of life and have a philosophical conversation/debate.  They will never be able to innovate or create things.  And certainly never find cures for diseases or build orphanages or schools or hospitals. Humans are much more complex and valuable than other organisms.

  23. KristaLynneH CalKane  See, I agree with 99% of what you said. The only bit I have a problem with is when you refer to the fetus in early development as a human in the same way that we are human. The reason I don’t consider it living or human is best put like this. Say you have a human being who has been in some kind of accident and it’s brain has been mostly destroyed and it’s body is smashed up. The only thing keeping it alive is machines. To me, that’s a human being that is kept alive with machines. To simply call it a person like you and me are persons would be misleading since without a working brain, all the things you mentioned that make human beings special (creativity, pondering the meaning of life and so on) are gone. I basically apply the same thing to the fetus at the moment of conception. Can it feel anything? Can it have conversations? can it ponder its own existence? No, it can’t. I understand that it will be able to do all those things one day and that’s why I don’t like abortion and would love to see a society that has less of it but calling a fetus in that stage of development a human or a person in the same way that you and me are humans makes no sense. I think this disagreement I have with Catholics is really just semantics. I doubt very much that anyone actually thinks that a fetus at the moment of conception is the exact same thing as a child moments after birth.

  24. CalKane KristaLynneH Interesting Cal.
    Well, you’re right (don’t get too excited!), I do not think that a fertilized egg is the exact thing as an infant moment after birth, at least in appearance. I also don’t think an infant moments after birth is the same as a toddler, teenager, or adult. But all are human (at different stages of development 😀 ). 

    Does an infant ponder it’s own existence? Can it have conversations? Nope, sure can’t. Is it less human then? No. What about a person with autism or cerebal palsy who can’t have a conversation or maybe adequately feed themselves? That’s the problem, once we start demanding that certain requirements (beyond being a living human organism) are needed in order to be considered a human being then lots of people won’t qualify. Perhaps someone thinks they should be able to breathe air first before they’re considered a “real” human being. All of it becomes subjective. If everyone can have their own definition of what a human is, or when human life starts, then one can easily do as they wish to something they don’t consider human. Sadly, there are people who think it’s okay to kill a child moments after birth, if the mother wants to. Because they have to. It is completely illogical to be okay with late term abortion and not be okay with killing the baby once it’s born (like in a botched abortion where the baby is born alive). It’s also illogical to not be okay with late term abortion but think it’s okay with early term abortion.
    Going back to my original point, it seems terribly inconsistent for you to value science, and say we should listen to it, yet reject the scientific facts of a human embryo.  If it’s not alive and it’s not human, then what is it? It certainly doesn’t have the potential to turn into a plant, or a horse. To say it has “potential life” completely ignores the fact that it is currently living, which is nonsensical.

  25. KristaLynneH CalKane  Me saying potential life was bad wording on my part. What I should have said was something like “an embryo at that stage is extremely different from a baby that has just been born so calling abortion at the earliest stage possible child murder makes no sense” It’s worth noting that this whole conversation is in the context of abortion and how Catholics call it an act of murder. I wouldn’t really have that much to say on this subject if Catholics would stop calling early stage abortion and the murder of a child the same thing. Of course, I’m not saying that an embryo at any stage isn’t living and shouldn’t be treated as such, I’m just saying that the differences at the stages of development need to be kept in mind.

  26. CalKane KristaLynneH Hm. So, I don’t think the whole conversation was in the abortion context. In fact, my first comment was in regards to the value you place on science but then disregard science. As I said it’s inconsistent.
    I was merely trying to point out that science proves the fertilized egg is a living human being. You, my friend, brought up abortion (and only recently). I think it’s essential to understand when life begins – moreover, that there is objective truth in regards to that matter. I understand that the words “child” and “baby” bring a certain image to mind, and each have their own proper definition. There are lots of expressions for and about pregnant women, such as: with child, eating for two, and even baby showers (not fetus showers) – so those terms aren’t just for Catholics who are trying to speak to others’ humanity when discussing pregnancies and abortions.

    The fact remains that a human embryo is a living human organism. The human zygote/embryo/fetus/infant/baby/etc should all be valued and protected. (I’ll still call them babies.)

    Now, murder, (which again, I didn’t bring up… but here we are), is the pre-meditated killing of another human being. Well, abortion certainly falls in that category because it’s not something done by accident (at least I’ve never heard of such a thing – nor do I think it’s possible). It’s a pre-meditated action, it’s a conscious decision. There’s time that lapses from decision to execution. Then a living human being is killed, or put to end. Regardless of the terminology used, the once living human is no longer living at the hands of another human. That’s textbook murder. 

    After reading your comment again, “It’s worth noting that this whole conversation is in the context of abortion and how Catholics call it an act of murder.” Perhaps you just meant your most recent comment – and not this whole thread. So, apologies if I misunderstood. But I already wrote all this good stuff ^^^ and I don’t want to delete it. 🙂
    I really appreciate your comments – really good discussion!

  27. KristaLynneH CalKane  “Now, murder, (which again, I didn’t bring up… but here we are), is the pre-meditated killing of another human being. Well, abortion certainly falls in that category because it’s not something done by accident (at least I’ve never heard of such a thing – nor do I think it’s possible). It’s a pre-meditated action, it’s a conscious decision. There’s time that lapses from decision to execution. Then a living human being is killed, or put to end. Regardless of the terminology used, the once living human is no longer living at the hands of another human. That’s textbook murder.”

    This is the of the only parts of the Catholic view on abortion that I have a problem with. I agree that life is sacred and that it should be respected. I too would love to see a world where people took more responsibility for their sex lives and didn’t get pregnant if they didn’t want to. That’s all fine. But calling abortion textbook murder in the same way that a serial killer is a textbook murdered makes no sense. There are huge differences between a women getting an abortion at the earliest possible stage and the same women stabbing someone to death and the differences between them need to be said very loudly when talking about this subject. That’s really the only point I’m trying to make.

  28. CalKane KristaLynneH Yes, the circumstances are very different. But when you look at the bare bones of each situation you have one (at least one) human premeditating (premeditation is the key to defining the word and action of “murder”) and following through with the ending of another human life. 

    Even if that human life is in the very early stages of development – it was still killed at the hands of another human being. You seem to be very caught up in how things look, a living human organism at the very early stages of development doesn’t look like a living human organism with a brain and mouth and therefore it should be okay to end it’s life. Abortion to kill that early in a pregnancy should be allowed because it doesn’t look like some one stabbing someone else to death. The problem I have with all of that is it’s very superficial and can be relative to each individual. 

    Poisoning someone can be very quiet and possibly undetectable. But the intent to end the person’s life is the only reason to do such a thing. Taking pills to end a tiny human’s life can also be very quiet and undetectable. But the intent to end that tiny human’s life is the only reason to take those pills. 
    I *think* we’ve exhausted our arguments. But I can’t say I won’t respond to any additional comments… I have a hard time letting things go, clearly.

    All the best to you Cal!

  29. KristaLynneH CalKane  Oh it’s got very little to do with how the embryo looks. If there was any reason at all to think that the embryo at that stage felt anything (and I don’t just mean pain, I mean emotions as well ) I would be 100% against abortions and this conversation would look every different. The reason stabbing someone is so different from early term abortion is because getting stabbed hurts, both physically and emotionally.

    I think you might be right by saying we have have exhausted this conversation but it’s been a pleasure and one of many hopefully 🙂

  30. CalKane KristaLynneH

    “Just when I thought I was out… they pull me back in…”, a la Al Pacino.

    So, if I’m understanding you correctly, a person is a person only if they feel emotional and physical pain? Why? Why is that a requirement for you to be against early term abortion – or rather, to see that early term living human organism with as much value as you see a later term living human organism?

    What if someone had the inherited nerve disorder Congenital Insensitivity, which causes them to not feel physical pain? What about a psychopath/sociopath who can play the part very well but doesn’t feel emotional pain? If it’s your requirement to have both traits are these individuals not human? AND WHAT IF one person possess both of these disorders? Are they not human? (and I’m talking about fully developed post-birth human organisms.)

  31. KristaLynneH CalKane  “So, if I’m understanding you correctly, a person is a person only if they feel emotional and physical pain? Why? Why is that a requirement for you to be against early term abortion – or rather, to see that early term living human organism with as much value as you see a later term living human organism”

    This is it in a nutshell. If you can show me any suffering involved at all in an early term abortion for the fetus, I will switch my position and become 100% against abortion. If you can’t, then the fact that you can’t but you easily could show me suffering in a 1-week old baby, for example, leaves us with a simple question “What should we care more about and try to avoid; Suffering or no suffering? In this case, I think that question answers itself.
    That’s why I think we should prioritize the life of a baby rather than a fetus, though it wouldn’t hurt us to do both if we could, which takes me back to my original comment about not liking abortion very much.

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