...if a fetus is a person, and abortion indisputably kills a fetus, then abortion is murder... But we punish people for murder. We sentence them to long prison terms, often for life. Sometimes we execute them.... What if they have multiple abortions? What if they had access to all the literature and information that anti-choicers believe women considering abortion should be required to receive? What if they acknowledge that they know exactly what they are doing and they feel no guilt or shame for terminating their pregnancies?
...If women are so infantile that our bad acts toward fetuses must be punished with counseling or left to God, does that apply when our bad acts are directed at born people? If I kill my next-door neighbor, can I simply say that because of my tiny lady-brain and tinier lady-morals, I just didn’t know any better? Can I get counseling or some smiting instead of jail time?
...If a fetus is a person with all the same rights as you or I, then killing that fetus — or paying someone to kill that fetus — is murder. Deliberate, pre-meditated murder. How can it possibly be legally (or even morally) consistent to attach full rights to a fetus and then treat its death as somehow less important, or different, than the death of a born person?
...To complicate things a little more: If life starts at conception, and from the moment of fertilization an egg is a full-fledged human being with the same rights as you or I, what do we do about calculating the death rate? The miscarriage rate?
...If a fertilized egg is a full-fledged person under the law, what other legal activities — other than abortion — would have to go? ...Any medical treatment that could potentially harm a fetus, even if foregoing it meant that the woman would experience severe health complications or death?
...What about pregnant women engaging in behaviors that are risky for the fetus? Can she be prosecuted for child abuse or negligence if she, say, drinks coffee while she’s pregnant? ...goes binge drinking every night and survives off of Cheetos?
...These are a lot of questions, but they absolutely must be asked. And those who want to see abortion criminalized need to think long and hard about the consequences of their ideal policies.
And a commenter says:
And these *would* be legitimate questions if abortion was outlawed and criminal cases against doctors/women went forward. The idea of forensic vagina inspectors poking the former contents of my uterus under a microscope to determine how many, if any, murders occurred is simultaneously hilarious and terrifying.
Brilliant stuff people! Forensic vagina inspectors. Gosh I love the blogosphere.