Opinion: It’s my body, don’t legislate it


By Kathryn Reed

I have not had an abortion.

But I would. I likely would have had one had I gotten pregnant when I didn’t use protection. I would have gotten an abortion – even today – if I were raped and impregnated.

I have friends and family members who have had abortions. It is probable some of my younger friends and family members will one day be added to that list.

Talk to any woman who has had an abortion. No one I know says it was an easy decision. No one I know laughs it off. While the physical aspects of the procedure are long gone, the emotional angst never quite fades away.

It is a monumental decision to bring a life into the world or not to. And the person whose body is affected is the only person who should be making that decision. Whether the woman consults with the man involved, family, friends, clergy, personal physician – whomever else – it is ultimately her decision.

It is shameful that in 2013, especially on this 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, I am even writing about abortion. While idealistically it would be great if there were never an unwanted pregnancy, that will never be a reality. I can type until my fingers are numb about contraception and still there will be unwanted pregnancies. There will always be medical reasons for an abortion as well as those in the case of rape.

In May 1989, Phyllis Schafly, who was the backbone behind defeating the Equal Rights Amendment, and Sarah Weddington, who defended Jane Roe in the 1973 Supreme Court decision, squared off at Harveys in Stateline as part of the casino’s lecture series.

I was there. I was 23 years old. I was covering the debate for the Tahoe Daily Tribune, where I was in my first job out of college. I know I did not grasp the significance of the women I was listening to or the debate. For me, I thought abortion had always been legal because it had been since long before I started having sex.

I think back now on that room filled with nearly 800 people and wonder if that many locals would come out today for a similar lecture.

Then I wonder why people aren’t angry that 40 years after abortions were legalized states are one-by-one limiting a woman’s access to a safe abortion. It isn’t about whether or not you would have an abortion. It’s about a woman having the right to make decisions about her body.

Government does not belong in anyone’s bedroom – as long as they are consenting adults.

People should have the choice to have sex (protected or not) with whom they want. And if a woman wants to terminate a pregnancy – for which there are myriad reasons – she should be able to do so. She did not need her parents or the government’s permission to get pregnant, nor should she need either of their permissions to get “unpregnant”.

This video says it so well. It’s not about taking sides or about being pro life or pro choice. Those labels are too limiting for our world today.

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Comments (59)
  1. Snowbum says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Because religion and when a fetus becomes ….well…you name the time and condition…. comes into the picture; together with more or less traditional men’s view of controlling women’s rights; and the political hot potato is is; the controversy will likely be around for a very long time.

  2. Biggerpicture says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Just another issue where the “less government” folks are screaming for MORE government. The GOP, the party of do as I say, not as I do!

  3. Old Long Skiis says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Kathryn Reed,
    Well written opinion piece and I’m In agreement with you. I can’t believe we are still having this debate after all these years.
    It’s a hard choice to make but that’s just it. It’s a choice. Done it myself in the past with former girlfriends and after much talking it’s not a simple decision and it’s a difficult time for the woman as well as the man. It still is on my mind all these years later. Was that the right thing to do? Yes it was.
    Keep up the good work Kae. Old Long Skiis

  4. Dumbluck says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Good opinion piece. You’re right, it’s not black and white, not life or choice. A personal decision where all options should be considered.

  5. Dogula says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Of course you should be able to do with your body as you please.
    But you do not have the right to force other people (the taxpayers) to pay for your choices.
    How can you say the government should stay out of your bedroom, but needs to pay for your abortion?

  6. K9woods says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Nice piece, Kae. After all these years, it is still a brave thing to do.

  7. Dogula says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    If life ends when the heart stops beating, doesn’t it start when the heart starts beating?
    You can hear the heartbeat 18 days into a pregnancy.

  8. John S says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Dogula — I do not see any mention in the article of her asking the govt to pay for abortions. If you want to bring costs into this discussion lets talk about the cost of an abortion VS the cost of an unwanted child being on the welfare rolls.

    Pro choice is not pro abortion.

  9. Biggerpicture says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    And then there is Paul Ryan (and the Catholic Church) who view contraceptives as a form of abortion!

    Hey GOP, stop trying to legislate to fit your warped sense of morality. More guns and less female productive choices is just plain CRAZY!

  10. Ernie Claudio says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    The answer to the abortion question is easy, just consider for moment that men were ones giving birth. A man would never let a government or anybody else tell him what he could or could not do with his body.

  11. Ernie Claudio says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    According to the Bible, it looks like life starts with the first breath and not the beat of the heart:
    Genesis 2:7, “And the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living soul.”
    This verse sets a pattern in the Bible where breath is often equated with life itself.

  12. Bijou Bill says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    If men could get pregnant abortion would be a sacrament in pandering paul’s church.
    Of course taxpayers being forced to pay for legal abortions is just more nonsense from the Pro-Birth crowd.
    I refer to them as pro birth as opposed to pro life because once the child is born they reject any societal responsibility for their lives.

  13. youhavegottobekiddingme says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    http://www.180movie.com/

    This movie is on the same topic and worth a watch. If your open to discussion about the topic.

  14. Really? says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Born again propaganda. Disgusting.

    Mr. YouHaveGotToBeKiddingMe, stay out of my womb.

    Don’t link the Holocaust and abortion and God.

    Clearly you are not open to a discussion based on posting that link.

  15. Rick says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Dogula:

    Again I suggest you check facts before firing off a missive. I am not sure where you get the notion that gov funds abortions but here is a site for you to read on the Affordable Health Care Act and the abortion issue.

    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2012/mar/21/blog-posting/does-barack-obamas-health-care-bill-include-1-abor/

    Now if you are referring to the health care offered to military women who have been raped by their colleagues, then tech yes, gov health insurance does in some cases fund abortions

    Rick

  16. Rick says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Additional facts regarding the fetus, since some have a preconceived notion not based in fact, like life begins at conception.

    See for example:

    “Fetuses become conscious at 8 weeks.”
    “Brain Scan”Photo: Copyright © 2005 Patrick Denker. Licensed under Creative Commons.
    False. Fetuses begin to develop a minimal brain stem at 7 weeks, but are not capable of consciousness until the third trimester and most likely remain unconscious until birth. As one brain scientist puts it: “the fetus and neonate appears incapable of … experiencing or generating ‘true’ emotion or any semblance of higher order, forebrain mediated cognitive activity.”

    Rick

  17. Janice Eastburn says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Well written and thoughtful editorial Kay. I, too, cannot believe that reproductive rights are still under attack 40 years after Roe v. Wade. And then we have the latest insanity perpretrated in the form of Paul Ryan’s legislative bill which would make certain forms of birth control the legal equivalent of homicide and would open the door for rapists to sue their victims for obtaining abortions. As for the tired old argument of “I don’t care if women get abortions but I as a taxpayer shouldn’t have to pay for it”, since when do taxpayers have the right to decide what healthcare pays for? Can I, as a taxpayer, refuse to cover heart attack care if it appears the patient has poor dietary and exercise habits? Can I refuse to pay for chemotherapy for the lung cancer patient who smoked cigarettes? Can I refuse to pay for the care of the broken leg suffered by the person who took a fall while skiing? Or the care of the head trauma suffered by the driver whose momentary inattention caused an accident? Of course not, and abortion care is no different. This is one slippery slope we are best avoiding!

  18. John says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Rick, what you are putting up here may be true but it misses the point.

    If sex is only within marriage, and only for purposes of procreation then there is no need for abortion. Any other sex is a amoral and is a result of the moral decline of the country.

    If we were to have a moral country then abortion would be unnecessary.

    The anti-choice crowd is really uninterested in the debate about consciousness because it does not address the abhorent behavior of having sex out of wedlock.

  19. LilPeter says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    John- I feel the same way a lot. Whenever I have bad thoughts I like to go shoot my guns off until they pass- it works for me.

  20. Lisa says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    John, In the first place, it is not up to you to decide when other people have the right to have sex and more than it is my right to decide when you eat, drink or any other human function. Please remember in the Bible, a baby wasn’t a human until either “quickening or birth (depending on which verse you believe) but eating pork is a clear abomination. Second (and I am not calm here), my mother nearly died the year before I was born because her Catholic hospital (the only one in her area)would not perform an abortion even though she had a fetus dead and rotting inside her, slowly poisoning her to death. She had been married over ten years and the father of the twins was my dad also known as “her husband”. Had you had you way, neither I nor my amazing child would be here today. It was the most traumatic event in her life and she never got over it. Your lack of both knowledge about pregnancy risks and lack of compassion are what I call immoral.

  21. Janice Eastburn says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Wow, Lisa….well said….thank-you. My heart hurts to hear your mother had to go through that. May no woman ever have to endure that experience again. Outlawing abortions has never made them go away. Women (even “married women” will obtain them under illegal, unsanitary, dangerous conditions). Also, John and LilPeter, what about pregnancies that occur as a result of rape or incest? Are the women who get pregnant under these conditions immoral in your opinion?

  22. John says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    I guess I have to take the anti arguement.

    Lisa, there is no moral prohibition against removing a dead fetus from the womb. That is of course not the taking of life, but was clearly malpractice. I am glad it worked out as well as it did.

    However, I do have to comment that your parents behavior was apparently moral and it appears they did not want an abortion, but had to get help because the fetus was dead.

    What we see is that abortion is more common because people have lost their moral compass and have sex out of marriage and divorce. Between abortion and no fault divorce we have allowed the country to decline.

  23. Rick says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    John: I completely agree with Lisa. Everyone has the right to decide if and when they wish to have sex and when and if that occurs when they are married and if they wish to have a kid or not. It is extremely naive to suggest that sex is not just for procreation – that may be the Catholic and evangelical version, but I can guarantee you it is not the non-orthodox Jewish (95% plus of Jews in other words) or most mainstream Christian perceptive. While it can lead to kids, it does not need to and often does not. I have been married for nearly 30 years and have one kid – I have managed to do it more than once.

    Many married women choose to have an abortion for various reasons. Including the choice to abort in cases of down-syndrome or other genetic diseases, in some cases do to the health of the women when the women’s life is at risk and in some cases the family can not afford it or other personal reasons. Neither I nor the gov should

    If you want to reduce abortions, the best thing you can do is wholeheartedly support easy access to inexpensive birth control.

    C Everett Koop, the evangelical Surgeon General under Reagan, long recognized this are thought the evangelical community had it all wrong.

    Sex is personal and the gov should not be involved and choices a women makes regarding the health of her body and whether or not she chooses to carry a fetus to term, is hers – who she involves in that choice is hers alone – e.g., Dr. sig other, friends, her clergy,etc. Clearly the government should stay out.

    Rick

  24. John says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    I understand that correlation does not indicate causation. But, it is impossible to ignore the decline of the family, particularly in inner-cities and increase in crime. In my youth poor inner-city minorities were known for their strong family and religeous values and honesty. Now look at the inner cities. Drugs, crime, a proliferation of single parent households now dominate once good but poor neighborhoods.

    It is obvious to many that this decline in inner-city communities is directly tied to the decline of the family and the value we as a society place on family, sex, life, drugs etc.

    We all pay for this. As taxpayers and as a society we pay for crime, we pay for welfare, we pay for the decline of schools and the loss of community. All of this is associated with the decline in family values. Abortion is a part of that. Sex outside of marriage is a part of that. Clearly no fault divorce is a part of that.

    Government should be involved, as we in society should be involved, with anything that is as apparently desctructive as the loss of values that once made this country so strong.

  25. John says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    By the way, thats the best I got. There are obvious flaws in the arguements, but it is the strongest anti-choice arguement I can make.

  26. Rick says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    John: You are correct correlation does not equal causation.

    One, crime has been declining for the last 20 years and this last year showed it first uptick.

    The rising crime rates may signal that decades of steady crime reductions may have finally bottomed out — and that the stagnant economy may be driving more Americans to break the law, said Eugene O’Donnell, a professor at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York.

    So your impression that crime is some how associated with sex out of marriage, is simply false to begin with.

    The world is a more complicated place yes, but actually for many groups, life is better not worse, due in large part to an increase in tolerance.

    Even though the teen pregnancy rate has declined over the past few decades, the fact of the matter is that the United States has the highest teen pregnancy rate of the Western industrialized world. It is true that the teen pregnancy and birth rate was much higher prior to 1980 (and especially in the 1950s and 1960s), but at the time young women were getting married and having children before the age of 20. Most of the teen pregnancies occurring before 1980 were to married women; now most of today’s teen mothers are unwed.

    So in short, sex out of marriage is not causing society to collapse. If you want to decrease abortions do what the rest of the industrialized world does, educate kids and people to use birth control unless they are actively trying to become pregnant. The number of unwanted pregnancies decline and so does abortion. We all win.

    Government should be encouraging the promotion of women’s health, such as easy and inexpensive access to birth control, let each women decide what works for them and we as a society benefit in having fewer unwanted pregnancies, less strife and fewer abortions. While there will always be a need for access to the safe medical procedures like abortion to deal with women’s choices regarding the health of the mother (which is well documented), genetic issues, and rape and incest, by encouraging thoughtful family planning, society will be much better off. So gov should stay out of the bedroom.

    Rick

  27. Janice Eastburn says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Rick: Please run for political office. You would have my vote!

  28. Dan Wilvers says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Quote[And the person whose body is affected is the only person who should be making that decision.]Quote

    would this include second-third trimester pregnancy?

    Seems to me by this stage there most definitely is another body affected aside from the woman’s.

  29. Ernie Claudio says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Two men are fighting and one of the men accidentally kills a pregnant woman. That man is put to death according to Exodus 21:22.
    BUT, if the woman lives and the fetus dies the man is NOT put to death.
    If the fetus was considered to be a life, then the man would have to pay with his life, because in those days the law was, “An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth”.

  30. Dogula says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Mr. Claudio, that’s the Old Testament.
    We eat shell fish now too.

  31. Parker says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    This issue, this sensitive issue, gets distorted. It has two parts: #1 The Moral and #2 The Legal.

    Morally, while respecting those that believe abortion is wrong, I believe it should be legal in most instances. I would be willing to go to the polls and vote for that to be the law of the land! And that’s how the issue should have been, and should be, dealt with!!

    But Legally, The Supreme Court was wrong to say the right to an abortion exists in our Constitution! Where?? If someone believes that right exists, then one has to believe the right to purchase and possess any type of firearm is unquestionable!

    The consequence of the flawed Roe v. Wade decision is that citizens too often look to the courts, instead of the voting booth, to resolve issues! And thus, that leaves the abortion still unresolved!

    One may not like Barack Obama. I didn’t vote for him. But he’s unquestionably our newly reelected President, because people went to the polls, and made it so!

  32. Chief Slowroller says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    the power of God and the forgiveness of sins.

    will take away the guilt

    from personal experience, I would suggest
    that you do not have an Abortion

  33. Hmmm says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    Personal experience?

    Chief, no man has had an abortion. Get real.

  34. thing fish says - Posted: January 22, 2013

    What makes anyone think that their made up religious text should be used as the basis for policy that dictates the actions of people who do not follow that made up text?
    Your book, your rules. Great. Tell as many people about your angry loon loon sky man as you want. Great. If other people don’t believe in your angry sky man, leave them alone, your rules do not apply to them. Angry sky man has plans for them, right? Murder, torture, volcanic hemorrhoids, etc.

  35. Alex Campbell says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    KAE good for you!!!
    NY Times Opinion OP-ED Contributor
    Kate Manning 1-22-13
    Leeches, Lye and Spanish Fly
    Desperate to end pregnancies,women have endured agony.
    Really a horror piece on what has happened and no doubt will continue.

  36. Ernie Claudio says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    “thing fish”

    Your comments included some wording that fits into the category called,”Name Calling”. This is a violations of the rules set in place by the administration of this website.
    What you need to do, is to reword your comments in a way that will get your points across without the name calling. Because the subject of abortion is so emotional, we tend to respond with emotion. The negative emotional feelings in your comments actually de-rail the reader from the points your are trying to make.

    I am looking forward to reading more about your points of view. But I ask that you not distract me and the other readers with emotional comments. As Sergeant Joe Friday used to say in series Dragnet, “Just the Facts, Ma’am, Nothing But the Facts”.

  37. Gus says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    America treats pregancy as a illness. The United States Centers for Disease Control report that 54,559,615 children have been aborted since 1973. That is an average of 3,300 children per day, 137 per hour and almost one every 30 seconds. In the time I spent writing this two innocent images of God were taken. If you were born after 1973 one-third of your classmates are missing. Our hearts are broken everytime a child’s life is taken in violence, through illness, or by accident in this country; yet we are blind to the holocost of abortion. How did we come to this?

  38. Ernie Claudio says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Although the number of “Induced Abortions” appears to be staggering, it is tiny when compared to the number of “spontaneous abortions” and “stillbirths” and “miscarriages” and “intrauterine fetal demises” or IUFD’s.

    Spontaneous abortions are a very common experience for women. It is estimated that between 25-50% of conceptions spontaneously abort. Researchers do not have an exact figure because when this occurs many women do not know they were ever pregnant.

    In some cases, the embryo or fetus may be only partially expelled. The spot on the uterine wall where a part is still attached may continue to bleed.

    Many women who have had miscarriages, object to the term “abortion”, because in everyday English the word is strongly associated with “induced abortions”.

    This is a very complicated subject and best taken out of the hands of the average Joe, or in my case the average Ernie.

  39. Rick says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Gus, I suggest you then advocate what other industrialized countries have demonstrated by practice. Educate teens and adults about family planning and make access to birth control easy, accessible and inexpensive and the number of abortions will drop as does the number of unwanted pregnancies. Pretty simple actually, and works in the rest of the industrialized world pretty well. The evangelical right has fixated on stopping sex, instead of fixating on good thoughtful family planning – to the maximum extent practicable, make every pregnancy desired. Rick

  40. thing fish says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Ernie, no I didn’t, I will not reword anything. Angry is an adjective that describes the entity, Sky is a the place where it is, Man is a impersonal pronoun that implies gender. Loon Loon the name of an entity, loon having its root in the word lunar.

    If we are going to talk about ‘nothing but the facts’, then I am assuming there will be no mention of God, Loon Loon, or Angry Sky Man, Odin, etc? Because they are ideas and can not be treated as or confused with facts. Good, we should start there.

  41. Ernie Claudio says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Thank you “thing fish”.

  42. Dan Wilvers says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    quote[What makes anyone think that their made up religious text should be used as the basis for policy that dictates the actions of people who do not follow that made up text?]Quote

    Thing, have you read the declaration of Independence lately?
    Seems to me our founders established their entire future on the idea of a Creator.

    No one is free from another man’s values, or God’s for that matter.

  43. Biggerpicture says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Mr Wilvers, weren’t many of the founding fathers deists?

  44. Janice Eastburn says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Whatever a person’s view of God is or is not cannot be the basis for legislation in a country where we (rightfully) pracice the separation of church and state. The constitution allows for “Freedom of religion” which has also been interpreted by our supreme court as “Freedom from religion”. In other countries religious dogma is used to justify the (perfectly lawful) killing of “adulterous” women and gay/lesbian people. Even if we did not have the separation of church and state, whose religion gets to make the rules? In this country, we celebrate many religions with many different rules. Who makes the rules? The Christians? The Jews? The Muslims? The Baptists? Protestants? Jehovahs Witnesses? Mormons? Christian Scientists? Seventh Day Adventists? And, even if we were to all agree to, or specify, a given religion (i.e. Christianity) what version of that do we legislate by; Old Testament, New Testament, Fundamentalism, New thought Christianity? Laws are laws. Religion is religion. If your religion prohibits a certain action, then don’t do it. I will do what is legal in society and true to my own relationship with God. And that decision is mine alone to make.

  45. Dogula says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Janice, Old Testament is not Christianity.
    So, if you believe in separation of church and state, do you believe it’s okay for Muslims to practice honor killings in our country? Because they do.
    Most of American law comes from English common law and the Magna Carta. It’s worked well for a very long time. Multi-culturalism and the false “dogma” of the left that there is no absolute right or wrong are what have led us to our current quagmire.

  46. Biggerpicture says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    ‘Multi-culturalism and the false “dogma” of the left that there is no absolute right or wrong are what have led us to our current quagmire.’

    So Dog, are you actually insinuating that LESS societal diversity is better? Or in other words are you saying ‘white is right’?

    And your analogy using Muslims is WAY off base, because those killings are still a felonious crime, as are any murder committed, regardless of the the intentions behind the murder. It’s funny you didn’t mention some christian sects that forego any medical care and let their sick children die.

  47. Ernie Claudio says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    I’d like to take a moment to thank everyone who has contributed to this hot topic. I have learned a lot from all of you. Our lives are different, and these differences have led us to our own individual set of values.
    We have all received much food for thought that we can use to reach a compromise. This is what makes our country great; we can voice our opinions without the fear of reprisal. We are the people and we all have a chance to influence the majority and the compromise the majority will settle on. My duty is to respect the decision of the majority.

  48. Janice Eastburn says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Dogula, thank you for your correction about my reference to the old testament, but take that mistake out and my point still stands. As for “honor killings”, no I do not believe (nor did my last post even imply that I believe) in the intentional killing of any person who has already been born, regardless of the reason and (with few exceptions, i.e. capital punishment or assisted suicide in some states) our laws do not support that either. By the way, for the record, I fully support your right to NOT obtain an abortion or anything else that violates your personal or religious beliefs. All I require is the same respect. According to the law of this country, where abortion is concerned, that is my right and that right is not subject to your approval.

  49. Rick says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Dogula: your statements continue to be ill-informed and disingenuous at best and nutty/dangerous at worst. Whether you had intended it or not, a fair reading of your post makes you out as a racist.

    1) Christians claim to pay homage to both the old and new testament and in fact in you buy a Christian Bible it comes with both; you have to go out of your way to buy only the New Testament. Many of my Christian friends will tell you how their clergy every Sunday base sermons around the writings of the Old Testament.

    In fact, the Old Testament is the basis for the evangelical right for denouncing gays (Deuteronomy) – funny thing they forget to quote the rest of Deuteronomy).

    As a Jew, what you refer to the old testament is what we Jews refer to as the Torah (five books of the bible, Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy) and Haftorah. Also not mentioned by Christians, but the Talmud is also a critical and sacred to Jews.

    Both Christianity and Islam originated from Judaism.

    2) Any murder, religious or not in this country are considered illegal by U.S. law and when discovered are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

    The KKK was protestant lead and supported by Christian churches in the South. The wacko Army of God who have killed Drs. that have preformed legal abortions and were hidden by Christians, the far right Christian killer in Norway that injured 151 and killed 77 in his attacks, other Christian militia groups known to be domestic terrorists include (but not limited to) Hutaree, The Covenant, The Sword, Arm of the Lord, Defensive Action and on and on and on. So sadly it appears that all religions can lay claim to some complete wack jobs that are nothing more than murderers.

    Working in the Bay Area, I happen to be friends with a number of Muslims, Hindus, Siks, etc. and I can say without question they are about 100 times more moral, ethical and tolerant then you and your oh so righteous group.

    You might actually think next time before you post and not portray the stereotype of what most of us already suspect about the far right. Rick

  50. Lisa says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Actually Dogula… A lot of people DON’T eat shellfish.

  51. Lisa says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    John, your facts are not correct. Many women have conditions that imperil their health where abortion will save them and for me an existing life always trumps a potential one. When life begins is a religious not a scientific decision. You talk of our decline into an immoral society. That moral marriage of my parents?…yeah it was, when he was sleeping with my mother, but not at other times in his life. Thing are not always what they seem. Actually the number of women who are not virgins at the time of their wedding has not changed in FOUR generations (so maybe Grandma and Grandpa were more wild that you like to think). At least 20% and most think about 35% of women were pregnant at the time of their marriage in Colonial times. Abortion was totally legal in America until the mid/late 1800s and the first “abortion laws” were in fact to protect women from abortion practitioners who had no training and were performing abortions later than was safe at the time. Ads for abortifacients (drugs that cause abortion)were regularly and legally in the papers. As Rick pointed out, crime rates have steadily gone down and neighborhoods change. That which was nice, deteriorates and that which was deteriorated become gentrified. It is the way of cities. What makes me moral or immoral is not what I do with a few square inches of my body, but how I act and treat others.

  52. Dan Wilvers says - Posted: January 23, 2013

    Bigger, yes, some. which makes my point I believe.

    Rick, concerning your comment [In fact, the Old Testament is the basis for the evangelical right for denouncing gays

    OT Levitical law was written for the nation of Israel. Within it are Moral, Civil, Ceremonial, and Dietary laws. NT theology embraces for the most part, only the Moral law, i.e. the ten commandments.

    Within the NT, in the book of Romans Chapter 1 vs. 18-26 and 1 Corinthians Chapter 6 vs. 9-11 is where Paul wrote concerning homosexuality. The context of which is debated somewhat between strict prohibition and allowable for monogamous relationships, though the latter is a minority interpretation, and has no historical validity in Christian theology.

    That would be a more accurate assessment of the debate I believe.

  53. Dogula says - Posted: January 24, 2013

    Rick, personally, I wouldn’t put Hindus and Sikhs in the same classification as Muslims. The Muslim text is not one of peace, regardless of what they might tell you. Hindus and Sikhs have generally been much more peace loving over their history, with an occasional skirmish here and there. It’s pretty much Muslims and Christians who have been at war for the souls (and riches) of the world. And at least Christianity preaches against killing, even if we so often fall short.
    Your claim that the KKK is a Christian organization holds as much weight as claiming the Nazis were Christian. Just ’cause you claim to be, doesn’t make it so.

  54. thing fish says - Posted: January 24, 2013

    Hi Dog. At some point in time you said that you were proud to be Islamophobic. What was that blatant propaganda film on youtube called?
    Is that still the case? Would you still recommend that film to someone?
    The reason I ask is that you said “And at least Christianity preaches against killing”
    Which makes me wonder if your knowledge of Islam has increased, or remained the same. That statement implies that Islam does not preach against killing. Which isn’t true.
    People and beliefs are subject to change, I am hoping you did.

  55. Rick says - Posted: January 24, 2013

    Dogula:

    you lack any grasp of reality. Your education of the Muslim religion is clearly Fox driven, and it simply skewed and wrong. My Synagogue works with the local Mosques and Christian Churches and all of these groups have formed a strong bond of support for the different houses of worship.

    To claim that the KKK did not have it seeds in the protestant churches of the south is to deny facts and truth. NO, the white churches of the south were the key support for the KKK. It is hardly the same thing as Hitler was not a christian nor did he support christian theology, the KKK was made up of the Christians of the community and tacitly supported by the white churches. As a Jew, I can say with certainty not many SS staff meetings opened with prayer, but all KKK meetings did (and those that occur still do). So your claim that it is not steeped in Christianity is laughable.

    Rick

  56. Bijou Bill says - Posted: January 24, 2013

    Some people like their Constitution the way they like their bible… Cherry pick the parts that fit their delusion, while ignoring or reinterpreting the parts that are inconvenient.
    I think we should tax the churches to pay for sex education in schools, contraception and Planned Parenthood programs which would lead to improved women’s health and far fewer unwanted pregnancies.

  57. John says - Posted: January 24, 2013

    Bijou Bill, so I think we should tax the Sierra Club, League to Save Lake Tahoe and Center for Biological Diversity and use the money for actual environmental improvement. However, I do realize that maybe there should be tax exempt programs that I dont agree with.

    If we tax churches it means all charities have to go, including the red cross, and salvation army. Seems like maybe putting up with the messiness of the current system is a better plan.

  58. Rick says - Posted: January 24, 2013

    John:

    What qualifies as a charity is also dependent on % of the $$ used to political lobbying (there are a number of other test also). That is why a number of NGOs create defense funds which are separate from the parent organization as they are not a 501(3)c charitable group. These defense funds are then able to spend their money as they see fit as they are not exempt from the IRS.

    We presently exempt places of worship if they stick to theology. A number of churches have crossed the line to becoming a political arm by advocating voting for certain politicians. That is actually a violation of the IRS rules, but so far the IRS has chosen not to target those churches. I personally wish they would as they are clearly violating the conditions of their tax-exempt status. I am aware of some evangelical churches in SoCal (I have seen the written text of the sermons that one parishioner was so proud of) who told their parishioners they were sinners if they voted for Obama (I am sure examples exist on the other side and are equally wrong).

    Places of worship are welcome to take on whatever political position they so desire; however they should simply accept by doing so they should loose their tax-exempt status.

    Rick

  59. Toughen Up says - Posted: January 29, 2013

    You can buy Bayer daily birth control at any pharmacy in South Korea for roughly $8/month without insurance. Why are we so dependent on big pharma? It can be done, the powers that be, mandate our choice to be responsible, and then tax the ever loving hell out of us. We are all sheep providing lawn service, wool, milk and meat for these greedy shepherds. When will we wake up?