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VooDooChild

Visionary Womanhood attempts logic to save the baybeez

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VooDooChild

Visionary Womanhood attempts logic in Defending Babies 101

 

Honestly, as much as I would love to pick their argument apart, logic isn't one of my strong suits. The first point ticked me off, though. My first thought was, "But it's a parasite!" Perhaps, one of you smarties can have some fun with this.

 

visionarywomanhood.com/defending-babies/

Edited by OnceUponATime
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salex
Visionary Womanhood attempts logic in Defending Babies 101

Honestly, as much as I would love to pick their argument apart, logic isn't one of my strong suits. The first point ticked me off, though. My first thought was, "But it's a parasite!" Perhaps, one of you smarties can have some fun with this.

visionarywomanhood.com/defending-babies/

Happily we have another virgin giving us her notes from an anti abortion workshop. Now I have to check to see if cause me to remember is another sahd site and what her continuing education might be focused on.

About the Contributor

Stephani, her parents, and six younger siblings make their home on a hobby farm in Minnesota where Stephani enjoys growing vegetables in the garden, acting in Christian dramas alongside her family and friends in their barn, and singing around a sink of dirty dishes with her sisters. Since graduating high school several years ago, Stephani has been passionately pursuing opportunities to serve her family, minister to the body of Christ and unbelievers, and continue her education. The Lord is filling her heart with awe for His glory and has given her a desire to share the matchless “treasure in the field†(Matthew 13:44) with others – particularly young ladies! For several years Stephani has been involved in young women’s ministry by organizing events, leading discipleship groups, teaching classes, and coordinating Christian fellowship opportunities. She is eager to remember the sweetness of the gospel, the works of the Lord, and the beauty of biblical femininity with young ladies on her blog Cause Me To Remember.

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Olive Plant

It's not really "begging the question" to state that a fetus doesn't have the same rights as a newborn or an adult because pro-choice people obviously do believe that a fetus isn't a human being any more than they believe a jellyfish or a virus is a human being. A virus, a living organism with its own drive to live, depends on you to survive and has the evolutionary potential (in theory) to eventually become a sentient being. You still kill it. You don't ask how many cells it has or how complex it is or how long until it might develop a conscience. At least up to a certain point, a fetus has more in common with a virus than it does with a newborn. You could say pro-choicers assume certain things about the nature of life and humanity, but that doesn't automatically mean they're making any logical fallacies. The comparison to the coat on the side of the road is totally absurd, because you're not going out of your way to run something over when you have an abortion. It's more like a breaking and entering scenario, and I bet you that these people aren't screaming "OMG IT MIGHT BE A PERSON WHO JUST SET THE ALARM OFF, MAKE SURE YOU DON'T KILL A PERSON." No. They're shooting at every noise that might be a person because they think their security has been violated.

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tanksmom

Hm, interestingly enough while she wouldn't listen to me I can shut down most of her arguments with the statement "It's not yet a person. It might become a person but at this point it is not" Is it a tax deduction? No? Not a person.

Someone who needs glasses is not the same as something that requires another persons body to survive. Oh & to the question about would you drive over something that might be a person or might be a coat? I would avoid it if possible. The same as I would do if it was an animal. However if I saw a carton of eggs in the middle of the street I wouldn't swerve at all. After all to me a carton of eggs holds less meaning than my car. Guess that makes me evil, huh? Something that is an actual living, breathing being I would avoid.

And in case of the separate DNA argument. Cancer has it's own DNA yet we try to eradicate it.

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2xx1xy1JD

1. Begging the Question

Quite frankly, this is a logical fallacy that pro-criminalization of abortion (I don't accept that their position is, in fact, pro-life) folks use.

Second, the question is wrong.

Is a fetus human? Well, if the pregnant woman is human and no weird science experiments are taking place, then yes, it is a human fetus and not a fetus of another species. Human simply describes the species.

The prime example of begging the question occurs here:

However if the unborn is human, her right to life must be held equal to the unborn child’s right to life. In that case, abortion is murder.â€

This ASSUMES that the right to life of a living human pregnant woman cannot trump the right to life of a human fetus. That's a position statement, not an argument.

A good clarifying question, btw, may be "how is a fetus different from a baby after birth?" My answer would be, "a fetus cannot survive outside the womb prior to viability, and even after that point is best off remaining in the womb until term unless there are exceptional circumstances. While in the womb, the fetus takes nutrients from the pregnant woman via the placenta, and her body bears the burden of supporting the growing fetus and giving birth."

A follow up question could be, "Is it possible for a fetus to survive if the pregnant woman dies prior to 23 weeks gestation?" Since the answer is "no", the issue is not choosing between one life and another in those cases - it's choosing between loss of a fetus, versus loss of a fetus AND loss of a pregnant woman.

2. SLED Argument:

Nice straw man arguments and false analogies.

All of the comparisons involve people who are already born, and not fetuses. The scale of comparison is off. If you are going to defend the rights of a single fertilized egg, be honest about it. You can have a belief that it has a soul - but that is a religious position, not something that is scientific, and it is also a position that varies by religion. You can say that it has the potential to grow into a baby - but you need to be honest about the steps that need to occur before this happens.

Dependency - a good question to ask is, "should we legally compel people to be tested for registries, and to donate their bone marrow, kidney or portion of their liver if they are a match for someone in need?" Remember, the definition of fetus involves depending on another human being in order to live. What if another human being can only live by receiving a body part that you don't absolutely require for your own survival?

Further question: "Since the fetus can only survive in the mother's womb, is passing legislation an effective way to ensure that the womb is a safe place for the fetus? Are there better, more effective ways to accomplish this - such as better comprehensive sex education, better access to birth control, better protection for pregnant women and better social services and supports for pregnant women and families?"

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Mama Mia

A follow up question could be, "Is it possible for a fetus to survive if the pregnant woman dies prior to 23 weeks gestation?" Since the answer is "no", the issue is not choosing between one life and another in those cases - it's choosing between loss of a fetus, versus loss of a fetus AND loss of a pregnant woman.

I'm more conservative regarding abortion than most people here. , but I completely agree with this. It makes zero logical sense to forbid abortion to save the life of the mother when the fetus will quite obviously die without the mother. It is particularly nonsensical in the case of ectopic pregnancies that are so very early in the pregnancy that there is no possible rationale that the fetus could survive.

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Minerva

Uh boy...

To engage in defending babies, do we need to be professional scientists, theologians, or philosophers? NO!
Mind you, defending any idea generally works better when you know what you're talking about, know what your opponent (actually) thinks, and know how to use logic. Stephanie doesn't seem to know any of these. She writes badly, too. I don't understand why so many people don't write well, can't write knowledgeably about any subject, and have blogs.

Science, Scripture, philosophy, and logic are on the side of LIFE.
Nope.

Science is neutral because it's science, though it supports the pro-choice side when applied to most common ideologies. If you believe bodily autonomy trumps life (i.e. if you'd be against mandatory organ and tissue donation), science tells you you're pro-choice. If you believe things need to be sentient and/or conscious to have the right to live, science tells you you're pro-choice. On the other hand, if you believe that anything alive, genetically unique and with the potential to be born as a human baby ought to have rights, science tells you you're anti-abortion, anti-menstruation, and possibly anti-non-procreative ejaculation. But science alone doesn't have anything to say about philosophical issues.

Scripture is not anti-abortion. The only times the Bible discusses the value of fetuses, it treats them like property.

Saying that philosophy has a single position on any issue is ridiculous. There are many different schools of philosophy, and each will have its own conclusion about abortion. Discussing philosophy as if it were an entity with a single position betrays Stephani's level of education.

Logic is also not a thing that can take sides in complex social issues; it is merely a process by which conclusions are reached by applying sound reasoning to assumptions. You can use logic to back up whatever view you want, but you'll only be right if your underlying assumptions are correct.

1. Begging the Question – Defending Babies by Challenging Assumptions

When someone argues that it is the right of a woman to choose abortion, their argument is often based on the assumption that the unborn are not human.

No, it isn't. This is a logical fallacy called a strawman argument.

This assumption is not argued, it is merely assumed in their arguments. Begging the question is a term used to identify this type of logical fallacy.
It's unclear what exactly Stephani is trying to say here, but there seem to be two possiblities:

a) Stephani has never heard an actual pro-choice person defend their position. She thinks "it's ok to kill fetuses because they're not human" is a common pro-choice argument.

It isn't, of course. Very few people think fetuses are not human; certainly no one who has taken grade 9 science. However, even if this were an honest representation of the pro-choice position, it would only be begging the question if pro-choicers never argued that fetuses aren't human. Begging the question is simply [link=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Begging_the_question]"when a proposition which requires proof is assumed without proof"[/link]. Your proposition can be incorrect without you begging the question.

b) Stephani has never heard someone claim that fetuses aren't human, but believes that pro-choice people secretly base their pro-choiceness on this claim. Which is, of course, silly.

Example: Begging the Question Conversation

Abortion advocate – “This woman has the right to decide whether to abort or not. It is her body.â€

The statement begs a question. The one who made this statement is assuming that only one body is involved.

No, they aren't. They said "it is her body", meaning that her body belongs to her and she can decide what happens to it, and who or what uses it. Hearing "it is her body' in this context and assuming the speaker is negating the presence of a second body is absurd. Taking your opponent's ambiguous statement and claiming that it means something stupid when it probably doesn't is making a strawman argument. So is representing your opponent's complex opinion on bodily autonomy with a simplistic blurb that could be interpreted to mean something stupid. For someone so keen to sniff out logical fallacies, Stephani sure is making a lot of them herself.

Because this assumption has not been argued and proven in the discussion, a clarifying question should be asked:

Pro-life advocate – “I agree that this woman has personal rights, however what about the unborn within her? What rights does he/she have?â€

Abortion advocate – “A fetus is different and doesn’t have rights.â€

Many pro-choicers do argue that there are things about a fetus that makes it ineligible for rights. A rational anti-abortion person could counter this argument by asking that it be expanded upon and attacking its explanation, or by explaining what a fetus has in common with people that gives it rights. Instead, Stephani advises that they derail the conversation:

Pro-life advocate – “Before we talk about whether this woman has a right to abort or not, we need to answer this question first – Is the unborn human? If not, she has every right to abort. In that case, abortion is no different than having a tooth pulled. However if the unborn is human, her right to life must be held equal to the unborn child’s right to life. In that case, abortion is murder.â€
The pro-choicer you are talking to will laugh at you, and then proceed to point out that, by your logic, having a tooth pulled is also murder. They may also tell that they do consider the fetus' right to life equal to that of the pregnant person, leaving you puzzled because you never bothered to figure out what "it's her body" actually means.

Instead of giving abortion advocates a free ride when they sneak assumptions into their statements, address them. Ask a few questions. Expose the root of their argument.
I agree with Stephani that people should be called out when they sneak false assumptions into their statements. Which is why I'm pointing out her various strawman arguments and the fact that being human does not guarantee something rights. I'll also point out that she's been taken for a ride if she thinks an entire movement can base its ideology on such easily refuted claims. Poor thing.

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OnceModestTwiceShy

Dear fundies: You can either reject science altogether, or embrace it even when it contradicts your worldview or - and I know this is terrifying for you - presents a gray area. What you cannot do is scoff at science, education, knowledge and intellect when it suits you, and then turn around and claim "science is on our side!" when it's convenient. Just like you can either reject university education or fawn over Ivy Leaguers and advanced degrees within your midst. Not both.

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2xx1xy1JD

Continuing on....

3. At What Point Does a Fetus Become Human:

I didn't think it was possible, but this part makes even less sense than the first two.

The gist of the argument is "if you aren't sure, err on the side of caution when it comes to life issues."

Um, ok. Let's do a little thought experiment here, shall we?

A friend of mine is Jain. If fundies are obsessed with seeing human souls is fertilized cells, then Jains see them in all living creatures. ALL of them. So, imagine a fundie meeting a Jain who uses this argument:

- What happens to your soul when you die?

- Well, I think it goes to heaven, if you're lucky.

- But you can't be SURE that you won't be reincarnated, right? Imagine you are driving at night, and see something in the road that may be a coat or a person. Wouldn't you drive around that thing, just in case? Well, if you aren't sure that a bug isn't the reincarnated spirit of your great-aunt Agnes, shouldn't you take precautions to avoid killing it because it might be a person?

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Minerva

I shall now brace myself for the second wave of stupid.

2. Identify the Irrelevant – Defending Babies with the SLED Argument

At this point in the discussion the abortion advocate may suggest one of four reasons that they believe the unborn are not human.

I see we're still using the "not human" strawman.

These can easily be remembered by the acronym SLED.

Size

Strawman.

Level of development
Relevant to the question of fetal rights; irrelevant to the question of whether something is human, as anyone with even rudimentary intelligence could tell you.

Environment
Strawman.

Degree of dependency
This is a strawman because it intentionally uses language that misrepresents the pro-choice position.

Don’t fear! These are irrelevant arguments. Begin asking questions:

Size – Do we have a greater responsibility to protect adults more than children merely because adults are larger than children?

A strawman, of course. Nobody argues that abortion is ok because the fetus is small. Furthermore, from one paragraph to the next, Stephani seems to have forgotten the point she is trying to make. She stated that "SLED" is used to argue that fetuses aren't human, but she is now treating it like it argues that fetuses simply less worthy of consideration. Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy.

Level of development – Should the oldest child in a family be considered more human than the youngest because they are more developed?
Stephani is correct in saying that development has no bearing on something's species. However, if you replace the "fetuses aren't human" strawman with "fetuses should not be persons with rights" - a real pro-choice position, the fetus' degree of development becomes relevant. You see, often when something gains rights, it diminishes the everyone else's freedom. This is a good thing; your freedom is supposed to be limited by other people's rights. But it means that we don't give things/individuals rights they won't benefit from, since this would me limiting people's freedom for no reason. Things that are unconscious, unaware of their own existence and unable to know or experience anything would not benefit from having rights. A 1st or 2nd trimester fetus's brain is so underdeveloped that it falls in this category. Therefore it shouldn't have rights. Equating the developmental difference between a baby and a 2nd trimester fetus with that between the youngest and oldest in a family is dishonest.

Environment – Are people who live in the rain forest more valuable than people who live in the dessert simply because of their environment?
Strawman, and Stephani has once again forgotten that she's supposed to be discussing the humanness of fetuses. Furthermore, her argument assumes that fetuses are people. What do we call that, again? Oh yeah, begging the question.

Degree of dependency – If someone needs glasses to see clearly or an inhaler to counteract asthma attacks does that make him/her less human because he/she has a greater degree of dependency?
Duh, but let's pretend Stephani wasn't still using the "human" strawman. Dependency is only indirectly related to whether abortion should be permitted. I can depend on my glasses to see clearly, and this has no impact on my rights. My life can depend on a device and this has no impact on my rights. Finally, my life can depend on someone else's body and this has no impact on my rights, but it also has no impact on their rights. Meaning that they have the right to end my life by cutting me off from using their body. Abortion is a right because fetuses depend on people's bodies, not simply because they depend. Pretending the pro-choice position is the latter is dishonest, and is a strawman argument.

All of these arguments are irrelevant when answering the question, “Is the unborn human?†Ask questions to expose their illogical foundation.
Here's the problem: none of the questions Stephani proposes will serve to expose the supposed foundation, not just because the supposed foundation is a lie, but because they're not designed to make someone admit that they don't think fetuses are human.

That's the second time Stephani does this. She claims to be giving the reader tools to expose their opponent's underlying assumption that fetuses aren't human. Instead, she instructs her reader to ask questions that have nothing to do with humanness, then bring up humanness out of the blue and act like their opponent has been talking about it all along. I really hope she didn't spend money on that seminar...

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Minerva
3. Defending Babies With the Question: At What Point Does a Fetus Become Human?

Some will argue that because there is not a general consensus on whether a fetus is a human or not we should allow women the option of elective abortions because there is no known marker for determining personhood.

Wrong. There is a general consensus that fetuses are human. There is a known marker for determining personhood: the law. However, this is the closest Stephani has come to representing an actual pro-choice argument. Individuals often should get to make their own choices when it comes to issues that are morally complex or morally ambiguous and will affect them in profound ways. For instance, we let birth mothers decide whether to keep their child or give them up for adoption, even though there are strong arguments for and against either, and even though people are strongly for and against either.

Abortion advocate – “In the medical world there is no consensus on whether the fetus inside a woman’s womb is really a human.â€
No one with even minimal intelligence would argue this.

Pro-life advocate – “You’re right. There is a lot of debate over that question. At what point do you think a fetus becomes human?â€

Abortion advocate may give any number of answers – “No one knows for certain… Probably at X number of weeks gestation… At birth… I don’t know….â€

Stephani comes close to telling the truth here. There is no debate over whether fetuses are human, and personhood as a legal concept is whatever the law says it is. But the question of whether a fetus is a human being or a person in the general sense, that question is ambiguous by nature, being a philosophical question.

Pro-life advocate – “If you were driving home late one night and saw the outline of what looked to be either a man or a coat laying on the road, would you drive over it? Its appearance is similar to the shape of a man, but you aren’t sure. What would you do?â€

Abortion advocate – “Obviously I would try to avoid it because it might be a person.â€

Pro-life advocate – “If you are not sure when a fetus becomes a human, shouldn’t you take precautions all along the way to avoid harming it because it might be a person?â€

I'll just point out the key difference between abortion and the coat analogy. In the coat analogy, there can be one of two things on the road: a human being, or an inanimate object, and we can't tell which it is. We could potentially do something we know with 100% certainty to be bad, therefore it is logical not to take the chance. With abortion, there is a different kind of unknown. We know exactly what we're doing, we just don't know with certainty whether that thing is bad because the evidence available to us can be interpreted many different ways.

Furthermore, suppose I have an abortion, and suppose someone invents a way to know 100% whether ambiguous things are right or wrong, and suppose it turns out that the abortion was wrong. I still didn't run someone over. I didn't crush someone's body under the weight of my car, causing them pain and snuffing out the existence they had wanted to continue. I would have killed something non-sentient and non-conscious. You can't compare the two, and slapping the label of "human being" on the fetus can't change that.

Also, the label "abortion advocate" is dishonest. To advocate means [link=http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/advocate?s=t]"to speak or write in favor of; support or urge by argument; recommend publicly."[/link] I would never recommend or argue that someone have an abortion, just as I would never recommend or argue that someone give birth. Because I'm pro-choice.

I sure feel bad for the poor reader who takes Stephani's recommendations seriously...

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VooDooChild

Thanks Minerva! That gave me some things to think about. Like I said, I don't do logic well. I just recently started studying it. But I don't remember crap, and would require a few days and note taking to be able to address her "points". That is just the way my brain works on Fibromyalgia. :shrug: So it helps me to see you smart people refute crap on here.

Anyway!! I particularly love this gem:

Taking your opponent's ambiguous statement and claiming that it means something stupid when it probably doesn't is making a strawman argument. So is representing your opponent's complex opinion on bodily autonomy with a simplistic blurb that could be interpreted to mean something stupid.

I'm assuming this is a textbook definition. :lol:

I remember getting my hair cut several doors down from a planned parenthood when my oldest was almost 4. During the time I was in the salon a group of "pro-life" protesters had gathered outside with their graphic cut up baby signs. I had to have daughter close her eyes until we had drove away from them to keep her from seeing that garbage. Not to mention they were crowded around the exit scowling and hollering at anybody going in or out that little strip mall. Fine example of christian pro-life that was!

I don't believe these people are pro-life at all. I appears to me as if they are just jumping on a religious (fundies, I mean) bandwagon to score Good Christian points with other christians....and maybe they think about god in the process.

Edited: to complete my thought.

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slickcat79

She also makes the assumption with the coat analogy that avoiding hitting the coat/person has no potential negative consequences. I mean, would you swerve to avoid the coat if it would put you in the path of an oncoming semi? Would you slam on your brakes if the road was wet/icy and you risked hurting not only yourself or your passengers but the potential person as well? What if you had your child in the car with you? Most women have nuanced reasons for choosing abortion, but as far as fundies are concerned abortion equals murder and "choosing life" equals sunshine and rainbows and unicorn farts :roll: It's not that simple.

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VooDooChild
She also makes the assumption with the coat analogy that avoiding hitting the coat/person has no potential negative consequences. I mean, would you swerve to avoid the coat if it would put you in the path of an oncoming semi? Would you slam on your brakes if the road was wet/icy and you risked hurting not only yourself or your passengers but the potential person as well? What if you had your child in the car with you? Most women have nuanced reasons for choosing abortion, but as far as fundies are concerned abortion equals murder and "choosing life" equals sunshine and rainbows and unicorn farts :roll: It's not that simple.

Oh, but it is! God said it, so they believe it. Though, I've never found it in the Bible.

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rward

I refuse to take "prolifers" seriously until they work just as hard to pass laws requiring organ donation, especially living organ donation. After all, it's a life!

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Minerva
Thanks Minerva! That gave me some things to think about. Like I said, I don't do logic well. I just recently started studying it. But I don't remember crap, and would require a few days and note taking to be able to address her "points". That is just the way my brain works on Fibromyalgia. :shrug: So it helps me to see you smart people refute crap on here.

Anyway!! I particularly love this gem:

I'm assuming this is a textbook definition. :lol:

Well, it took me a few hours, but I find picking apart bad arguments satisfying. Studying logic is really helpful. You know how you can read something and know it's wrong? Studying logic gives you the words to explain why it's wrong.

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merrily
I refuse to take "prolifers" seriously until they work just as hard to pass laws requiring organ donation, especially living organ donation. After all, it's a life!

They should ban all cancer treatment. It's a living being too, am I right? :roll:

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VooDooChild

They should ban all cancer treatment. It's a living being too, am I right? :roll:

Antibiotics must go too, then. Bleach, hand sanitizer, fly swatters <--- Fly swatters??? VooDoo....go take a nap.

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2xx1xy1JD

Antibiotics must go too, then. Bleach, hand sanitizer, fly swatters <--- Fly swatters??? VooDoo....go take a nap.

Yeah, fly swatters. A fly is also a living thing. It's no more logical or illogical to think that a fly can have a soul than it is to believe that a single fertilized cell can have a soul - it's just a different religious belief.

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VooDooChild

I know we can be sarcastic here. But when you follow fundie logic and just think about a little bit, well.....this is where their argument leads.

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2xx1xy1JD
I know we can be sarcastic here. But when you follow fundie logic and just think about a little bit, well.....this is where their argument leads.

I totally get you. I'm quite serious - in a snarky way, of course - about the bug argument though. My religion happens to say that full human rights are conferred at birth. I view the idea that they are present at the moment of fertilization the same way that I do the idea that all living things have a right to life: it's a religious idea, it's not MY religious idea, it's all well and good for someone who is part of that religion to follow the implications of that idea and they should have every right to do so for themselves, but it would impose high burdens upon those that I recognize as having human rights if we forced the idea on other people.

So yeah, I kill bugs. I'll occasionally wonder if I'm wrong and if the souls of mosquitoes count....but I'm not prepared to get bitten.

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