Abortion Advocates and Absurd Arguments from Absurdity

According to the ever-reliable Huffington Post, the City Council for Wilmington, Delaware has passed a resolution urging for a “personhood of sperm” amendment. I’m sure the writers of this resolution consider themselves masters of satire. Because it is so patently obvious that a human embryo and a male sperm are so much the same that if a man can dispose of his sperm however he wishes, women should be able to do what they want with the genetically unique and independent organism that is growing in their bodies. That was sarcasm, by the way. In case you missed it.

These pieces of ridiculous legislation have been cropping up all over the place as protests against what many idiots believe is an encroachment on women’s rights. It was a diabolically brilliant move by the pro-abortion movement to link abortion to women’s rights. Now every attack on abortion is an attempt by chauvinists to drive women back into the kitchen barefoot. Every call for the end of prenatal genocide is just a veiled attempt by men to control women and their bodies. “End abortion today,” they say, “and tomorrow women won’t be allowed to vote.” It’s easy for an attempted argument from absurdity to become any number of informal fallacies (e.g., straw man, slippery slope, etc.) And as is often the case with people who desperately want to defend an untenable position, they resort to ridicule and rage far before they ever employ reason. Mostly because reason isn’t on their side.

Thus, irrational protest legislation abounds making it clear that the “war on women” will not stand. Notice that the Wilmington City Council did not fight for the personhood of an ovum. No. They want to make it clear: “You mess with our bodies, we’ll mess with yours.” Similarly ridiculous reductio ad absurdum legislation was proposed to protest a Virginia bill (which has passed since then) that required women to have an ultrasound before they were allowed to have an abortion. The protest bill, in typically self-satisfied style, required that men have a rectal exam and a cardiac stress test before they got treatment for erectile dysfunction. Apparently feminists have no problem implying that the common denominator between viagra and abortion is the continuation of consequenceless recreational sex. And here I thought it was about women’s rights.

No one seems to get it though. The vast majority of anti-abortionists aren’t trying to control women. They’re trying to save lives. Because we obviously think there is a significant difference between a sperm or an ovum on one hand and a human embryo—a human being—on the other. And honestly, whatever the abortion advocates might say to the contrary, they know there is a difference too. It’s hard not to recognize the difference. In an excellent article on the ethics of stem-cell research, I read these insightful words:

But are human embryos human beings?

Indeed they are, and contemporary human embryology and developmental biology leave no significant room for doubt about it. The adult human being reading these words was, at an earlier stage of his or her life, an adolescent, and before that an infant. At still earlier stages he or she was a fetus and before that an embryo. In the infant, fetal, and embryonic stages, each of us was then what we are now, namely, a whole living member of the species Homo sapiens. Each of us developed by a gradual, unified, and self-directed process from the embryonic into and through the fetal, infant, child, and adolescent stages of human development, and into adulthood, with his or her determinateness, unity, and identity fully intact. Although none of us was ever a sperm cell or an ovum — the sperm and ovum from whose union we emerged were genetically and functionally parts of other human beings — each of us was once an embryo, just as we were once infants, children, and adolescents. In referring to “the embryo,” then, we are referring not to something distinct from the human being that each of us is, but rather to a certain stage in the development of each human being — like saying “the teenager” or “the five-year old.”

If this were not the case, my hypothetical pro-abortionist, why would it matter if the embryo/baby/infant/toddler/teenager had already exited a women’s body? Hmmmm? What difference would that make? Do I have authority to dispose of my sperm only as long as it stays in my body? No. That’s stupid. Even (and maybe even especially) after it exits my body, it remains a terminal product of my body. Because our gametes are actually part of our bodies. In fact, a female child is conceived with her gametes already predetermined by her genetic makeup. There’s a conundrum for you. Does that unborn child have authority over her gametes? Apparently not, according to logic-anemic abortion advocates. In fact, she isn’t even entitled to her own life. How’s that for a war on women?

But if gametes and embryos are so much the same, why don’t you—Mr. or Mrs. Hypothetical advocate of abortion—praise Andrea Yates as a feminist hero rather than condemn her as a murderer? Why don’t you build a monument to Kermit Gosnell as a social crusader? Is it because he took your argument to its horrifically absurd logical conclusion, and you couldn’t bear to look? But don’t you know? This is what abortion actually is—it’s the murder of a human being. And there’s no way around it.

That’s why Gosnell was visibily annoyed by the guilty verdict read to him by a jury of his peers. Wouldn’t you be annoyed in his position? He’s thinking, “Hey! I’m getting some really mixed messages here. We all already knew it was murder, right? What did you think it was? I thought you guys were okay with that. I certainly was. What difference does it really make if I kill the baby in the womb or out of it?”

Comparing sperm cells to an embryo is not a valid argument from absurdity. It’s just absurd. It’s actually stupid. It’s stupider than the homosexual chicken petition to Chick-Fil-A. Because no lives were on the line then. We have so much blood on our hands already, and abortion advocates are over there making clever, self-congratulatory jokes to defend the brutal murder of the most innocent and guiltless members of our population. Wake up, people.