Friday, December 28, 2012

Abortion, Bibles and Communism

There's something quite ironic about American anti-abortionists, but before I get to it, let's settle this "life is sacred" issue.

Life is not sacred. Nothing is sacred. "Sacred" is a designation intrinsically tied into religious doctrine and therefore unfit for any rational discourse. Privately, I might consider intellectual advancement sacred but I cannot justify using the word to attempt a moral coup against my opponents in any argument simply by subverting their mental processes using the childhood religious indoctrination to which most humans have unfortunately been subjected.

Life just is. We end life on a continuous split-second basis and I've brought this up in a previous ramblant (that'd be a rambling rant, let's hope it catches on) because we are capable of discerning the value of various flavors of "sacred" life. The idea that humans are somehow a "thing" apart from the rest of the natural world, Yahweh's own children made in his image, is also as obsolete as stoning people to death for working on a Saturday. There are some humans who should be killed because their very nature is detrimental to the rest of us. Most serial killers (and I don't mean the famous ones, but your run-of-the-mill gangbangers with half a dozen deaths on their conscience) are irredeemable. They will never be anything but a burden or danger to the rest of us and it is in self-defense that we should execute them. I'm not even going to worry about health concerns to the mother, rape, incest, and all other supposed justifications for abortion because first-trimester abortion, that killing of a lump of cells which cannot form even the simplest thought like 'hungry' or 'scared' before it becomes an unwanted child, needs no justification. If the mother is unwilling or unable to commit to caring for it, kill the damn thing. It's not an ugly word. Kill that foetus.

The basic, logical principles of coexistence dictate that we should refrain from murder. We cannot cooperate if we live in constant fear of each other. This is not, however, an absolute. Not all life is equal. Even the strictest of vegans cannot afford to hold the lives of algae and wheatgrass sacred. Not all humans are equal either. A baby eats, shits and emotionally manipulates its parents into giving it whatever it wants, usually food and clean diapers. It exists on a mental level below that of monkeys and far below that of apes. It's not until two years of age that we can overtake chimps intellectually, and many adult humans can barely be said to do that much. A first-trimester mindless parasite is much, much less than even that. It does not think. It is a lump of cells. The self, the personality, the individual which is the incredibly complex pattern of neural impulses in a fully-developed brain, cannot exist at that stage. It's no more human, in the existential sense, than the shrimp you had for lunch.
That potential baby's mother, however, is a whole different story. She can perform physical labor, at the very least. She can derive enjoyment from complex situations, from mental stimulation, however rudimentary. She can converse, cooperate, maybe even create (artistically or scientifically, not biologically) and generally has a lot more potential to enrich the lives of others. That is, unless she's saddled with the care of a screaming, reeking, selfish little monster that'll suck the life out of her for the next eighteen years. Killing that vicious, life-sapping parasite before it can become a thinking being, before it can realize that it's an unwanted, neglected child is a much loftier goal than adding another miserable, unfulfilled, aimless and hopeless life to this already crowded planet, and ruining at least one other life in the process.

Let's do away once and for all with the pretense of rational argument against abortion. Stop letting anti-abortionists re-brand themselves "pro-life" and stop pretending that they should be heard on equal footing with rational decisions to end life before it becomes sentient, before we are obligated to treat it as an equal. Unwanted pregnancies destroy lives. They create, by and large, miserable new lives. It is no accident that this clamor against abortion can almost always be heard from dedicated irrationalists, from bible-thumpers, koran-thumpers or veda-thumpers.

It is no accident that reproductive rights become codified into pretty much any and every religion. It is a quick and ruthless process which seems to take place as soon as a religion is founded. Religion is a tool of social control. Humans will do almost anything for reproductive rights. Controlling this most powerful instinct and its attendant behaviors, tendencies and rituals is intrinsic to controlling not only the currently copulating generation, but also its offspring. Of course they're going to push for all-out abstinence even in the 21st century when we have so many safe and convenient ways to limit reproduction. Sexual frustration is good from the viewpoint of a religious leader. It'll make you do anything and everything to secure marriage rights. Large, starving families are much easier to control than small, self-sufficient ones. The key to maintaining control over the lower tiers of a power structure is to keep them disparate and desperate, as I said in an earlier post. Starving people have no principles. A family which has to split a loaf of bread nine ways instead of three ways will do anything, murder, lie, cheat, steal, whatever you and your soldiers order them to do. Cheap labor, cheap canon fodder, and the more desperate they are the more they'll cram into churches for you to feed them false promises.

Here's  the chuckle-inducing bit though. It's sometimes pointed out just how ironic it is that the "pro-life" (sorry, threw up a little in my mouth at having to call them that) crowd is also the pro-execution crowd. It also tends to be the pro-war crowd, for god and country! For about half a century, it would also have been the anti-communist crowd, god's chosen fighting the godless red menace. Oddly enough, while the red menace was certainly anti-religious, methodically wiping out that competing power structure in its territory, its stance was decidedly pro-cheap-labor, generally not crazy about elective surgery, and frequently discouraged abortion. In the mid 1930s, with five-year plans already in full swing, Stalin decided a fresh generation of proletarians was necessary to escalate the development process and outlawed abortion, reversing Lenin's earlier populist legalization of it. The same scene was replayed two decades after WWII in the satellite state of Romania, for the same reasons. *

By whatever delusion the religious right is trying to sell anti-abortion legislation to its brainwashed kneelers and chanters, their leaders' motivation is the same cold-blooded attempt to maintain the pyramid scheme of human hierarchies. The base needs to be wide enough to support disproportionate wealth and power at the top.

* I skipped a step there because I didn't want to get all "Godwin's Law" up in here, but it does bear mentioning that the Nazi regime also outlawed abortion for pedigreed German women, even as it thinned "impure" populations elsewhere.

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