I was wondering if at last night’s presidential debate whether the issue of ESCR or abortion would ever come up. It finally did towards the end.
DEGENHART: Senator Kerry, suppose you are speaking with a voter who believed abortion is murder and the voter asked for reassurance that his or her tax dollars would not go to support abortion, what would you say to that person?
KERRY: I would say to that person exactly what I will say to you right now.
First of all, I cannot tell you how deeply I respect the belief about life and when it begins. I’m a Catholic, raised a Catholic. I was an altar boy. Religion has been a huge part of my life. It helped lead me through a war, leads me today.
But I can’t take what is an article of faith for me and legislate it for someone who doesn’t share that article of faith, whether they be agnostic, atheist, Jew, Protestant, whatever. I can’t do that.
But I can counsel people. I can talk reasonably about life and about responsibility. I can talk to people, as my wife Teresa does, about making other choices, and about abstinence, and about all these other things that we ought to do as a responsible society.
But as a president, I have to represent all the people in the nation. And I have to make that judgment.
Now, I believe that you can take that position and not be pro- abortion, but you have to afford people their constitutional rights. And that means being smart about allowing people to be fully educated, to know what their options are in life, and making certain that you don’t deny a poor person the right to be able to have whatever the constitution affords them if they can’t afford it otherwise.
That’s why I think it’s important. That’s why I think it’s important for the United States, for instance, not to have this rigid ideological restriction on helping families around the world to be able to make a smart decision about family planning.
You’ll help prevent AIDS.
You’ll help prevent unwanted children, unwanted pregnancies.
You’ll actually do a better job, I think, of passing on the moral responsibility that is expressed in your question. And I truly respect it.
I think I agree with President Bush when after Kerry’s statement he said "I’m trying to decipher that." The argument that Kerry used makes a sophist look rational by comparison. Protecting life becomes just an article of faith as it was only some law in a homeowners association instead of something that is part of natural law and can be known by all those of good will. Their are many Democratic articles of faith that he is willing to take against the majority of those who don’t share that faith. For example the Kyoto treaty, tax increases, national health care, cloning, multilateralism instead of leadership, etc. By this view the only way you could represent the people in our republic is to only pass laws that have a 100% consensus. Then again maybe his taking every possible position on every idea is consistent with his view. He can represent both those against the Iraq war and for it as his voting reflects. He is personally against abortion but votes for it for those in favor of it. He is for middle class tax cuts but to help those against it he doesn’t show up for the vote. He is like the character Billy Pilgrim in Slaughterhouse Five but instead of being "unstuck in time" he is unstuck in opinions. From one moment to the next he never knows what opinion reality he is currently in. If a movie were to be made on John Kerry I would title it "A Man for All Reasons"
Then he says he will counsel people about other choices like abstinence. Oops an article of faith being imposed on the public. Maybe he is personally in favor of abstinence education but to be consistent on imposing moral views explains why he voted against the $75M for abstinence education.
I would also like to know how abortion reduces AIDS? Show me a country that increases "family planning" education and I will show you a country that has an increasing AIDS rate. And then we come to the unwanted children and unwanted pregnancy line. If children can be killed because they are unwanted after conception then why not killed if unwanted after birth? If society arrested and charged someone for being unwanted and then executed them how is that any different from charging an unborn child for having committed the crime of life that they should be executed for a someone’s disposition towards them?
And then Kerry responded with a follow up:
Well, again, the president just said, categorically, my opponent is against this, my opponent is against that. You know, it’s just not that simple. No, I’m not.
I’m against the partial-birth abortion, but you’ve got to have an exception for the life of the mother and the health of the mother under the strictest test of bodily injury to the mother.
Secondly, with respect to parental notification, I’m not going to require a 16-or 17-year-old kid who’s been raped by her father and who’s pregnant to have to notify her father. So you got to have a judicial intervention. And because they didn’t have a judicial intervention where she could go somewhere and get help, I voted against it. It’s never quite as simple as the president wants you to believe.
Funny how the health of the mother does not seem to matter when it comes to the Abortion-Breast-Cancer link. Or when women die in totally unregulated abortion clinics. The Supreme Court extended health of the mother to include psychiatric health and so again this ignores the psychological effects on those involved in abortions as chronicled daily at After Abortion. Then there is the fact that partial birth abortion is never medically necessary to save the life of the mother. How is the mother’s life endangered since in both cases a baby is delivered the only difference is that the PBA procedure produces the delivery of a dead baby. Even the AMA said PBA "is not good medicine" and "not medically indicated." Maybe these types of things are the most annoying part of the abortion debate. Politicians and others can make totally unsubstantiated claims and then not be ridiculed and mocked by the MSM. The MSM is more often accomplishes then reporters or fact-checkers. John Kerry keeps claiming that he would be a president who believes in science – perhaps he means junk science.
LONG: Senator Kerry, thousands of people have already been cured or treated by the use of adult stem cells or umbilical cord stem cells. However, no one has been cured by using embryonic stem cells.
Wouldn’t it be wide to use stem cells obtained without the destruction of an embryo?
KERRY: You know, Elizabeth, I really respect your — the feeling that’s in your question. I understand it. I know the morality that’s prompting that question, and I respect it enormously.
But like Nancy Reagan, and so many other people — you know, I was at a forum with Michael J. Fox the other day in New Hampshire, who’s suffering from Parkinson’s, and he wants us to do stem cell, embryonic stem cell. And this fellow stood up, and he was quivering. His whole body was shaking from the nerve disease, the muscular disease that he had.
And he said to me and to the whole hall, he said, You know, don’t take away my hope, because my hope is what keeps me going.
Chris Reeve is a friend of mine. Chris Reeve exercises every single day to keep those muscles alive for the day when he believes he can walk again, and I want him to walk again.
I think we can save lives.
Now, I think we can do ethically guided embryonic stem-cell research.
We have 100,000 to 200,000 embryos that are frozen in nitrogen today from fertility clinics. These weren’t taken from abortion or something like that. They’re from a fertility clinic. And they’re either going to be destroyed or left frozen.
And I believe if we have the option, which scientists tell us we do, of curing Parkinson’s, curing diabetes, curing, you know, some kind of a, you know, paraplegic or quadriplegic or, you know, a spinal cord injury, anything, that’s the nature of the human spirit.
I think it is respecting life to reach for that cure. I think it is respecting life to do it in an ethical way.
And the president has chosen a policy that makes it impossible for our scientists to do that. I want the future, and I think we have to grab it.
Would these embryo’s be used against the will of the parents? Mr. Kerry did not mention that he is also in favor of clone-and-kill laws for ESCR. This is also another example of why the Catholic Church is right about In Vitro Fertilization. The warehousing of people in liquid nitrogen is the direct effect of modern reproductive technologies in that to help people have children also helps them also to have frozen children doomed to a hibernated life and eventual destruction.
But to give equal to morally absurd statements – President Bush replies.
Embryonic stem-cell research requires the destruction of life to create a stem cell. I’m the first president ever to allow funding — federal funding — for embryonic stem-cell research.
Those two sentences taken together are just odd and even Senator Kerry called him on it. to which the President responded:
BUSH: Let me make sure you understand my decision. Those stem- cells lines already existed. The embryo had already been destroyed prior to my decision.
I had to make the decision to destroy more life, so we continue to destroy life — I made the decision to balance science and ethics.
Now possibly that is a good moral line of reasoning or at least is much better then purposely creating and destroying embryos or directly killing frozen embryos for the purpose of research. My problem with that line of reasoning is many. Say for instance that those 20 stem-cell lines had produced medical cures. This would have created a demand for embryonic stem-cells that those already existing lines of stem-cells could never satisfy and would directly lead to the demand for sources such as clone-and-kill.
Dawn Eden in reply to the debate wrote a post titled W.C. Fields Hated Children and Dogs:
John Kerry Probably Doesn’t Hate Dogs
I couldn’t help but think of John Kerry rhapsodizing in last night’s debate about how he wouldn’t make an "article of faith" into law. I’m sure Kerry wouldn’t see anything fundamentally wrong with the moral priorities of a society that gives a man 25 years for beheading a dog—but would allow that same man, were he a doctor, to stick a pair of scissors into the back of a six-month unborn-baby’s skull.
Now as someone who not only enjoys old W.C. Fields movies and has played him on the stage I can remember some of W.C. other quotes relating to children that fit in perfectly with society today.
"All the sounds of little feet around the house. Nothing like having midgets for servants."
Someone asked Fields: "How do you like children?" He responded:"Parboiled!" or sometimes "They are very good with mustard."
"There is not a man in America who has not had a secret ambition to boot an infant."
The last quote is not funny in the least, but sadly it is too reflective of the culture of death.
While doing research on the debate I ran across this Google parody page.
Earl of Times Against Humanity also has a Lessons Learned: Bush vs Kerry Round 1 (scroll down)