Lucy on Abortion

 

NARAL, the National Abortion Rights Action League, has decided to sell abortion using dogs — because people are really comfortable with dogs, but not so comfortable with abortion. (In fact, we’re so uncomfortable with abortion that abortion advocates generally try not to use the word.)

Here’s an example of NARAL’s canine campaign currently making the rounds on the internet.

Bandit doesn’t say he’s pro-abortion, exactly. He’s pro-choice. And he isn’t anti-life, exactly: he just hates anti-choice disinformation, whatever that is.

Frankly, he doesn’t look like much of a hater to me. He looks like a happy dog, a thoroughly decent, loving kind of fellow. Frankly, he’s probably a lot more photogenic than the average NARAL booster, though I’m just guessing there.

NARAL talks a lot about “freedom,” but I suspect their idea of freedom is really just a clump of cells, not the full-throated living freedom that most of us who use the word mean by it. I doubt NARAL is big on ending lockdowns or letting people exercise all of their constitutional rights. But then, they’re the abortion people, even if they would prefer to describe themselves in more… pleasant… terms.

For the record: I’m pro-choice, in that I support the right to abortion very early in pregnancy. I would limit it far more than it is limited now, and absolutely not allow tax dollars to pay for it. NARAL, in contrast, is enthusiastic about public financing, and defensive about the form of infanticide descriptively sanitized as “late-term abortion.”

But all of that is heavier than I wanted to be. I’m here to talk about dogs and abortion.


This is Lucy. Lucy is what we like to call a “pure-bred Lab cross.” I had an opportunity to interview her recently about the NARAL campaign, and about her views on the very serious topic of abortion.


Me: Lucy, thank you for taking time to speak with me today.

Lucy:

Me: You’ve heard what Bandit has to say about abortion. What are your views on the topic?

Lucy:

Me:

Lucy:

Me: You were adopted from a shelter that had a no-kill policy. In that sense, I guess we could say that it was a pro-life animal shelter. Do you feel that Bandit’s views are reflective of dogs in general, and particularly of rescue dogs such as yourself?

Lucy:

Me: Speaking of that shelter, we were told that your parents were both Labradors, and yet you have the legs and ears of a Corgi. Would you care to comment on your ancestry?

Lucy:

Me: Well, we love you just the same. We should probably mention that you aren’t actually my dog. You belong to my youngest child, Darling Daughter, who chose you several years ago from internet pictures posted by the animal shelter. I raise you now that she’s away in college, but you’re really her dog.

Lucy:

Me: Yes, I feel the same way. We’ve grown close.

Lucy:

Me: Maybe we should also note that Darling Daughter is also adopted, in her case from China, where abortion — and particularly abortion of girls — is both common and publicly funded. At the risk of sounding like Pollyanna–

Lucy: Pollyanna was also adopted.

Me: Yes, you’re right. Anyway, at the risk of sounding like that young lady, I’ll observe that even China’s extraordinary enthusiasm for abortion wasn’t able to prevent me from standing in a Guangzhou hotel room cradling in my arms the nine-month-old infant who, fifteen years later, would select you from among your siblings based on the rich blackness of your nose — which she thought made you look intelligent.

Lucy:

Me: Of course, your nose turns pink in winter, as everyone can plainly see. It’s still lovely.

Lucy:

Me: My point being that even if NARAL manages to realize its ambitions regarding ubiquitous and tax-funded abortion, beautiful lives will still manage to run the gauntlet. If they can survive China, they can probably survive NARAL as well.

Lucy:

Me: No, I don’t like it either. Go get your ball. I’ll take you outside.

Published in Domestic Policy
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  1. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    Lucy the taciturn.

    • #1
  2. James Lileks Contributor
    James Lileks
    @jameslileks

    Me: Of course, your nose turns pink in winter, as everyone can plainly see. It’s still lovely.

    Lucy:

    Lucy looks a lot like my Birch, and has the same seasonal nose pigment shift. 

    This all reminds of an anodyne Twitter account called WeRateDogs. Just pictures of cute dogs and off-kilter remarks. For some reason the guy who ran the account decided to post some pro-abortion comments, or said he’d donate T-shirt revenue to PP, or something. He was surprised and dismayed to find that not everyone who liked cute dog pictures wasn’t an enthusiastic supporter of abortion. 

    Sorry, choice.

    • #2
  3. Pete EE Member
    Pete EE
    @PeteEE

    Huh. I guess dogs don’t voice much opinion on abortion after all.

    • #3
  4. ctlaw Coolidge
    ctlaw
    @ctlaw

    Did Bandit ask to be neutered?

    • #4
  5. Kephalithos Member
    Kephalithos
    @Kephalithos

    Geez. I didn’t think it could get worse than, “This morning, over breakfast, my three-year-old turned to me and said, ‘Daddy, our unwillingness to do the work of abolishing systemic racism is just unconscionable!'” but . . . I guess it can.

    • #5
  6. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    Henry Racette: For the record: I’m pro-choice, in that I support the right to abortion very early in pregnancy. I would limit it far more than it is limited now, and absolutely not allow tax dollars to pay for it.

    Why?

    • #6
  7. Samuel Block Support
    Samuel Block
    @SamuelBlock

    I think Bandit’s getting it a little easy. “Perfect,” they say. Has he even come to terms with racism?

    • #7
  8. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette: For the record: I’m pro-choice, in that I support the right to abortion very early in pregnancy. I would limit it far more than it is limited now, and absolutely not allow tax dollars to pay for it.

    Why?

    I wouldn’t let tax dollars pay for it because it’s a profoundly divisive moral issue and it would be disrespectful and, I think, unjust to compel people to pay for it against their will. 

    • #8
  9. Scott Wilmot Member
    Scott Wilmot
    @ScottWilmot

    Henry Racette: For the record: I’m pro-choice, in that I support the right to abortion very early in pregnancy.

    So you won’t use the word abortion either, as in being pro-abortion very early in the pregnancy.

    I usually like your posts but this makes no sense. There is no right in natural law or in our Constitution to justify taking the life of an innocent human being.

    You are uncomfortable using the word abortion. Why is that?

    • #9
  10. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette: For the record: I’m pro-choice, in that I support the right to abortion very early in pregnancy. I would limit it far more than it is limited now, and absolutely not allow tax dollars to pay for it.

    Why?

    I wouldn’t let tax dollars pay for it because it’s a profoundly divisive moral issue and it would be disrespectful and, I think, unjust to compel people to pay for it against their will.

    I was more interested in why you support abortion in early but not later pregnancy.

    • #10
  11. DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) Coolidge
    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!)
    @DonG

    Shall we assume that NARAL supports the killing of puppies?  That is a bold strategy.

    • #11
  12. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Scott Wilmot (View Comment):

    Henry Racette: For the record: I’m pro-choice, in that I support the right to abortion very early in pregnancy.

    So you won’t use the word abortion either, as in being pro-abortion very early in the pregnancy.

    I usually like your posts but this makes no sense. There is no right in natural law or in our Constitution to justify taking the life of an innocent human being.

    You are uncomfortable using the word abortion. Why is that?

    Stand down, friend. I don’t like abortion, but I am in favor of its legality. And I did use the word in the sentence that said as much. That’s something NARAL rarely does. My objection is not that Bandit uses the term pro-choice, but rather that he doesn’t use the word abortion.

    • #12
  13. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) (View Comment):

    Shall we assume that NARAL supports the killing of puppies? That is a bold strategy.

    NARAL would definitely support the choice to kill puppies. Strangely, they set up abortion centers parts of the country with high populations of black puppies. 

    • #13
  14. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    Black Labs Matter (white) - Dog Bandana | LaughingShirtsAndGifts

    • #14
  15. 9thDistrictNeighbor Member
    9thDistrictNeighbor
    @9thDistrictNeighbor

    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) (View Comment):

    Shall we assume that NARAL supports the killing of puppies? That is a bold strategy.

    That’s PETA.

    • #15
  16. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male
    @MiffedWhiteMale

    Does Bandit still have his testicles? 

    If not, did he affirmatively consent to their removal?

    If so, does Bandit get consent from any female dogs he “partners” with, or is Bandit a rapist?

     

    • #16
  17. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette: For the record: I’m pro-choice, in that I support the right to abortion very early in pregnancy. I would limit it far more than it is limited now, and absolutely not allow tax dollars to pay for it.

    Why?

    I wouldn’t let tax dollars pay for it because it’s a profoundly divisive moral issue and it would be disrespectful and, I think, unjust to compel people to pay for it against their will.

    I was more interested in why you support abortion in early but not later pregnancy.

    I thought that might actually be what you were asking, but enjoyed the ambiguity of your question.

    The point of the post was to poke some ridicule at NARAL’s shallowness on a subject that deserves, even demands, better. But I’ll comment briefly on the issue itself, since you asked.

    There are conceptions of human worth and dignity that spring from metaphysical assumptions. Mine does not, it’s more utilitarian, or perhaps instinctive. Within that conception is room for a narrow variety of trade-offs between individual liberty and human life.

    For example, I can see an argument being made within that context either for or against capital punishment. I happen to be in favor of capital punishment’s very limited use, but  I don’t see a strong moral argument for or against it. 

    On the other hand, within my conception of human worth and dignity, I can’t justify pacifism. I can’t reconcile it with the over-arching principles of worth and dignity.

    Abortion soon after conception can also be justified within my framework. I can see arguments for and against, and consider it a legitimate balancing act of liberty versus life, as I do capital punishment or war. (And yes, I know that there are important distinctions between each of these examples. I don’t think those distinctions invalidate their worth as examples.)

    I can’t fit late-term abortion or plain old infanticide with that moral framework, and so I oppose both. 

    • #17
  18. RufusRJones Member
    RufusRJones
    @RufusRJones

    This is the way this works. All of the public shaming and legal threats drive most abortion to Planned Parenthood. Basically all of it in some areas. They have executives that make a lot of money off of it. (The senator from Minnesota for example. I forget the figure, but it is just crazy money.) They have overhead to cover. (Google the Houston PP building sometime.) They have lobbyist bills to cover. So now they have quotas. Lila Rose proved that they have quotas. They literally need people to screw up so they can make money.

    Just make the moral case. Skip the legal threats. Then you will get more people to stop supporting the Democrat party so much and you will get a better world.

    This is the world after Roe v. Wade and all of the tactics.

    • #18
  19. RufusRJones Member
    RufusRJones
    @RufusRJones

    I’m not going to dig it up right now, but half of the pro abortion lobby in Minnesota is an incredibly weird bunch. What a bunch of fruit cakes. They use the most whacked language you could ever think of to make excuses for abortion.

    • #19
  20. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    It has the status of a sacrament among its most ardent supporters. I find that extraordinarily offputtRufusRJones (View Comment):

    I’m not going to dig it up right now, but half of the pro abortion lobby in Minnesota is an incredibly weird bunch. What a bunch of fruit cakes. They use the most whacked language you could ever think of to make excuses for abortion.

    It has the status of a sacrament among its most ardent supporters.  Given that it seems to be the centerpiece, if not the entirety, of their peculiar religion, the phrase “death cult” seems appropriate.

    • #20
  21. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    There are conceptions of human worth and dignity that spring from metaphysical assumptions. Mine does not, it’s more utilitarian, or perhaps instinctive. Within that conception is room for a narrow variety of trade-offs between individual liberty and human life.

    There are also metaphysical assumptions of human worth and dignity that spring from conceptions. If we assume a fetus is neither a criminal nor an unjust aggressor, I’m not really comfortable granting human worth and dignity to said fetus gradually over time on a kind of sliding scale. At my age, I get nervous about sliding scales of that sort. They can easily slide the other way.

    • #21
  22. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    There are conceptions of human worth and dignity that spring from metaphysical assumptions. Mine does not, it’s more utilitarian, or perhaps instinctive. Within that conception is room for a narrow variety of trade-offs between individual liberty and human life.

    There are also metaphysical assumptions of human worth and dignity that spring from conceptions. If we assume a fetus is neither a criminal nor an unjust aggressor, I’m not really comfortable granting human worth and dignity to said fetus gradually over time on a kind of sliding scale. At my age, I get nervous about sliding scales of that sort. They can easily slide the other way.

    Respectfully, your comfort is not required. A substantial fraction of the country is comfortable drawing a line somewhere, and I am in that substantial fraction. I’m fully cognizant of the risk of sliding scales, but I accept that sometimes they’re required in a large population composed of individuals with differing views.

    It’s a very serious topic, and I think the discussion should be open and robust. That’s why I object to idiocy like NARAL’s  dog campaign. The Supreme Court’s very bad decisions on the topic of abortion have damaged the national discourse on the subject. That’s a tragedy.

    • #22
  23. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Respectfully, your comfort is not required. A substantial fraction of the country is comfortable drawing a line somewhere, and I am in that substantial fraction. I’m fully cognizant of the risk of sliding scales, but I accept that sometimes they’re required in a large population composed of individuals with differing views.

    If you believe infanticide is wrong but someone else believes infanticide is right, does that make an act of infanticide wrong for you to commit but right for the other person to commit? 

    • #23
  24. Freeven Inactive
    Freeven
    @Freeven

    May I suggest replacing constitutional rights with constitutionally protected rights?

    • #24
  25. Scott Wilmot Member
    Scott Wilmot
    @ScottWilmot

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Stand down, friend. I don’t like abortion, but I am in favor of its legality. And I did use the word in the sentence that said as much.

    Stand down? Not a chance. Oh yes, you used the word abortion, except when it came to stating your position. You say you are pro-choice. That is what the Leftists and Progressives say. Why don’t you say you are pro-abortion, because that is the choice you are talking about.

    Abortion is the greatest human rights issue of our day. Abortion is ugly, demonic. I just can’t understand at all how someone can say they don’t like abortion, but are in favor of its legality. It makes no sense.

    This is where I stand:

    We Shall Not Weary, We Shall Not Rest.

    • #25
  26. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Respectfully, your comfort is not required. A substantial fraction of the country is comfortable drawing a line somewhere, and I am in that substantial fraction. I’m fully cognizant of the risk of sliding scales, but I accept that sometimes they’re required in a large population composed of individuals with differing views.

    If you believe infanticide is wrong but someone else believes infanticide is right, does that make an act of infanticide wrong for you to commit but right for the other person to commit?

    Basil, that’s an interesting but ambiguous question. Perhaps you can help me better understand what you’re asking.

    In general, do you think that moral behavior consists of acting in the way one believes to be morally correct, or do you think that it means acting in a way consistent with a moral framework the actor may reject, not understand, or of which he may be completely unaware?

    When you ask “is an action ‘right’,” what are you asking? Are you asking whether I think it’s a good thing, or whether I would be acting morally if I did it, given my own moral framework?

    Are you asking if any sane and undamaged human would consider the action morally acceptable?

    Help me understand your question.

    • #26
  27. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Respectfully, your comfort is not required. A substantial fraction of the country is comfortable drawing a line somewhere, and I am in that substantial fraction. I’m fully cognizant of the risk of sliding scales, but I accept that sometimes they’re required in a large population composed of individuals with differing views.

    If you believe infanticide is wrong but someone else believes infanticide is right, does that make an act of infanticide wrong for you to commit but right for the other person to commit?

    Basil, that’s an interesting but ambiguous question. Perhaps you can help me better understand what you’re asking.

    In general, do you think that moral behavior consists of acting in the way one believes to be morally correct, or do you think that it means acting in a way consistent with a moral framework the actor may reject, not understand, or of which he may be completely unaware?

    When you ask “is an action ‘right’,” what are you asking? Are you asking whether I think it’s a good thing, or whether I would be acting morally if I did it, given my own moral framework?

    Are you asking if any sane and undamaged human would consider the action morally acceptable?

    Help me understand your question.

    I’m asking whether the morality or immorality (good or evil) of an act can be determined objectively. Are there acts that are objectively and inherently evil even though they may be consistent with an individual actor’s moral framework? Or is there no such thing as an objectively and inherently evil act because everything depends on the individual actor’s moral framework?

    • #27
  28. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Respectfully, your comfort is not required. A substantial fraction of the country is comfortable drawing a line somewhere, and I am in that substantial fraction. I’m fully cognizant of the risk of sliding scales, but I accept that sometimes they’re required in a large population composed of individuals with differing views.

    If you believe infanticide is wrong but someone else believes infanticide is right, does that make an act of infanticide wrong for you to commit but right for the other person to commit?

    Basil, that’s an interesting but ambiguous question. Perhaps you can help me better understand what you’re asking.

    In general, do you think that moral behavior consists of acting in the way one believes to be morally correct, or do you think that it means acting in a way consistent with a moral framework the actor may reject, not understand, or of which he may be completely unaware?

    When you ask “is an action ‘right’,” what are you asking? Are you asking whether I think it’s a good thing, or whether I would be acting morally if I did it, given my own moral framework?

    Are you asking if any sane and undamaged human would consider the action morally acceptable?

    Help me understand your question.

    I’m asking whether the morality or immorality (good or evil) of an act can be determined objectively. Are there acts that are objectively and inherently evil even though they may be consistent with an individual actor’s moral framework? Or is there no such thing as an objectively and inherently evil act because everything depends on the individual actor’s moral framework?

    I can think of acts which I believe no sane individual would consider morally acceptable. I guess that might be a definition of “inherently evil.”

    I suppose that leaves open the question of whether a crazy person who committed such an act would be “evil,” per se.

    I’m not actually strongly interested in ascribing  evil to people or to acts. I *am* interested in regulating some behavior based on a popular consensus as regards morality. 

    • #28
  29. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Respectfully, your comfort is not required. A substantial fraction of the country is comfortable drawing a line somewhere, and I am in that substantial fraction. I’m fully cognizant of the risk of sliding scales, but I accept that sometimes they’re required in a large population composed of individuals with differing views.

    If you believe infanticide is wrong but someone else believes infanticide is right, does that make an act of infanticide wrong for you to commit but right for the other person to commit?

    Basil, that’s an interesting but ambiguous question. Perhaps you can help me better understand what you’re asking.

    In general, do you think that moral behavior consists of acting in the way one believes to be morally correct, or do you think that it means acting in a way consistent with a moral framework the actor may reject, not understand, or of which he may be completely unaware?

    When you ask “is an action ‘right’,” what are you asking? Are you asking whether I think it’s a good thing, or whether I would be acting morally if I did it, given my own moral framework?

    Are you asking if any sane and undamaged human would consider the action morally acceptable?

    Help me understand your question.

    I’m asking whether the morality or immorality (good or evil) of an act can be determined objectively. Are there acts that are objectively and inherently evil even though they may be consistent with an individual actor’s moral framework? Or is there no such thing as an objectively and inherently evil act because everything depends on the individual actor’s moral framework?

    I can think of acts which I believe no sane individual would consider morally acceptable. I guess that might be a definition of “inherently evil.”

    I suppose that leaves open the question of whether a crazy person who committed such an act would be “evil,” per se.

    I’m not actually strongly interested in ascribing evil to people or to acts. I *am* interested in regulating some behavior based on a popular consensus as regards morality.

    Popular consensus has found some shocking things to be moral.

    • #29
  30. Henry Castaigne Member
    Henry Castaigne
    @HenryCastaigne

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Respectfully, your comfort is not required. A substantial fraction of the country is comfortable drawing a line somewhere, and I am in that substantial fraction. I’m fully cognizant of the risk of sliding scales, but I accept that sometimes they’re required in a large population composed of individuals with differing views.

    If you believe infanticide is wrong but someone else believes infanticide is right, does that make an act of infanticide wrong for you to commit but right for the other person to commit?

    Basil, that’s an interesting but ambiguous question. Perhaps you can help me better understand what you’re asking.

    In general, do you think that moral behavior consists of acting in the way one believes to be morally correct, or do you think that it means acting in a way consistent with a moral framework the actor may reject, not understand, or of which he may be completely unaware?

    When you ask “is an action ‘right’,” what are you asking? Are you asking whether I think it’s a good thing, or whether I would be acting morally if I did it, given my own moral framework?

    Are you asking if any sane and undamaged human would consider the action morally acceptable?

    Help me understand your question.

    I’m asking whether the morality or immorality (good or evil) of an act can be determined objectively. Are there acts that are objectively and inherently evil even though they may be consistent with an individual actor’s moral framework? Or is there no such thing as an objectively and inherently evil act because everything depends on the individual actor’s moral framework?

    I can think of acts which I believe no sane individual would consider morally acceptable. I guess that might be a definition of “inherently evil.”

    I suppose that leaves open the question of whether a crazy person who committed such an act would be “evil,” per se.

    I’m not actually strongly interested in ascribing evil to people or to acts. I *am* interested in regulating some behavior based on a popular consensus as regards morality.

    Popular consensus has found some shocking things to be moral.

    Cannibalism was approved in ancient Mexico.

    • #30