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Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?[W:150

Should women be free to brain-damage their fetuses with substance?


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Neomalthusian

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If yes, please explain the morality of this position.

If no, please explain how this should be enforced.

(P.S., assume this is a fetus that by all indications will be carried to term and delivered.)

Thanks.
 

SmokeAndMirrors

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

Gee, what an objective thread title, clearly looking for honest discussion. :roll:

If you're asking if we should just start tossing pregnant women in jail, absolutely not. What if she is early on and didn't even know she was pregnant? What if she is mentally ill?

This is a very slippery slope, and we have already seen cases of the descent down that slide, with crap like this being used to throw women in jail. A psychotic, mentally ill woman miscarrying after a suicide attempt and being charged with something insane a couple years ago comes to mind.

To employ laws like that is to say that the woman's body belongs to that state. Since you are clearly in support of this, and you also state your lean is "libertarian," I have no idea how you reconcile such an extreme degree of totalitarian hypocrisy in your own mind.

Outreach, education, and health care is a far better way to tackle this problem.
 

Neomalthusian

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

Gee, what an objective thread title, clearly looking for honest discussion. :roll:

If you're asking if we should just start tossing pregnant women in jail, absolutely not. What if she is early on and didn't even know she was pregnant? What if she is mentally ill?

You're launching way ahead here. What I'm asking is what I asked: should women be free to do this to their fetuses?
 

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

Gee, what an objective thread title, clearly looking for honest discussion. :roll:

If you're asking if we should just start tossing pregnant women in jail, absolutely not. What if she is early on and didn't even know she was pregnant? What if she is mentally ill?

This is a very slippery slope, and we have already seen cases of the descent down that slide, with crap like this being used to throw women in jail. A psychotic, mentally ill woman miscarrying after a suicide attempt and being charged with something insane a couple years ago comes to mind.

To employ laws like that is to say that the woman's body belongs to that state. Since you are clearly in support of this, and you also state your lean is "libertarian," I have no idea how you reconcile such an extreme degree of totalitarian hypocrisy in your own mind.

Outreach, education, and health care is a far better way to tackle this problem.

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Neomalthusian

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?


I should have added a third option: "This question makes me too uncomfortable to answer."

Unless you have an answer to the thread question?
 

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

I should have added a third option: "This question makes me too uncomfortable to answer."

Unless you have an answer to the thread question?

S&M basically echoed my thoughts on the subject.
 

Neomalthusian

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

S&M basically echoed my thoughts on the subject.

Obviously, but like her, you too are avoiding the simple question. Either women should be free to do this to their fetuses, or they shouldn't be.
 

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

Obviously, but like her, you too are avoiding the simple question. Either women should be free to do this to their fetuses, or they shouldn't be.

No, it's not that simple of a question.
 

Neomalthusian

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

No, it's not that simple of a question.

It really is a simple question. As a society we should interfere with the permanent damage some women do to their fetuses (and if so I ask how), or the alternative position (by default) is that there should not be an intervention and that women should be free to permanently damage their fetuses.

I wish I could modify the poll to include "too uncomfortable to respond."
 

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

You're launching way ahead here. What I'm asking is what I asked: should women be free to do this to their fetuses?

Yes, how do you reconcile the hypocrisy of your libertarian lean and advocating for state control over women's bodies?
 

Neomalthusian

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

Yes, how do you reconcile the hypocrisy of your libertarian lean and advocating for state control over women's bodies?

I have advocated for nothing in this thread. I asked a question.

You're the third person who has avoided the question altogether, and the second who has put words in my mouth and told me what my position was so that you'd have something to argue against without actually responding to the question.
 

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

It really is a simple question. As a society we should interfere with the permanent damage some women do to their fetuses (and if so I ask how), or the alternative position (by default) is that there should not be an intervention and that women should be free to permanently damage their fetuses.

I wish I could modify the poll to include "too uncomfortable to respond."

There are more nuances, and shades of grey to this question then you are willing to acknowledge. It's not my fault that you fail to realize this, and fail to see that your thread started out from a flawed question.
 

Paschendale

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

A woman's liberties should never be fewer merely because she is pregnant. Any right she possesses, any liberty, and choices she can make, must be exactly the same, whether she is pregnant or not. Anything else is discrimination against her merely on account of her sex. There is no escaping this situation, and there is no way to justify imposing extra legal duties upon a woman merely for becoming pregnant.
 

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

Yes, though with a caveat..... Any woman who can be proven to have been drinking, smoking, or using other substances which are known to cause potential harm to the fetus throughout the pregnancy should NOT be able to claim any sort of State Aid for any issues that child has which can reasonably be considered a potenital side-effect of the use of those substances. Basically - You drink/smoke/use drugs while you're pregnant and your child has some problem because of it - Don't look to the Government for any sort of assistance with those issues.
 

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

I have advocated for nothing in this thread. I asked a question.

You're the third person who has avoided the question altogether, and the second who has put words in my mouth and told me what my position was so that you'd have something to argue against without actually responding to the question.
Because your question is a false dichotomy that's based on an appeal to emotion fallacy, you left little doubt what your opinion is.
 

Mathematician

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

A woman's liberties should never be fewer merely because she is pregnant. Any right she possesses, any liberty, and choices she can make, must be exactly the same, whether she is pregnant or not. Anything else is discrimination against her merely on account of her sex. There is no escaping this situation, and there is no way to justify imposing extra legal duties upon a woman merely for becoming pregnant.

You really don't give a **** about kids, do you? Your defense of a pregnant woman doing things which are known to increase the odds of an unhealthy baby is sickening. What your moral beliefs are based on, I haven't got the slightest clue.
 

RabidAlpaca

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

It really is a simple question. As a society we should interfere with the permanent damage some women do to their fetuses (and if so I ask how), or the alternative position (by default) is that there should not be an intervention and that women should be free to permanently damage their fetuses.

I wish I could modify the poll to include "too uncomfortable to respond."

You're starting to be attacked by the pro-choice whiners that have absolutely no interest in actually answering your question. You posed a simple question, and they respond with nothing but "Well, it's complicated".

It's not really that complicated. I think a loose framework of laws to help encourage women to act responsibly wouldn't be a horrible thing. Why should a woman 8 months pregnant be allowed to take 10 shots at the club? It's ruining some poor kid's chances at a normal life. Though of course the pro-choice side will never admit that's actually a kid growing in there.

Yes, how do you reconcile the hypocrisy of your libertarian lean and advocating for state control over women's bodies?

To employ laws like that is to say that the woman's body belongs to that state. Since you are clearly in support of this, and you also state your lean is "libertarian," I have no idea how you reconcile such an extreme degree of totalitarian hypocrisy in your own mind.

There's nothing about protecting a kid from being abused and damaged by the mother that's incompatible with libertarian beliefs. You don't cry about the state owning your body when you're not allowed to drink under 21. Why can a woman drink while 8 months pregnant, but a child can't drink at say 5 years old? Or 15 years old? Does the state own everyone under the age of 21? What about disallowing you to drive without a license? Does the state own everyone in the US?

And moot, it's not surprising that you refused to answer the question and just started ridiculous personal attacks.

A woman's liberties should never be fewer merely because she is pregnant. Any right she possesses, any liberty, and choices she can make, must be exactly the same, whether she is pregnant or not. Anything else is discrimination against her merely on account of her sex. There is no escaping this situation, and there is no way to justify imposing extra legal duties upon a woman merely for becoming pregnant.

The state dishes out liberties to certain groups, while denying it to other groups all the time. Driving, drinking, voting, etc. etc. etc. In those situations the only person being harmed is the person partaking in the action. In this case another human life is being effected. So why is that so extreme of a position to say there might be some limitations to what a woman can do to her fetus?
 
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iangb

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

In terms of the crime itself - the situation should be judged by the effect on the foetus after viability. If there are significant negative effects that could be directly linked to the actions of the mother, she would probably be guilty of (at best) criminal negligance, and (at worst) aggrevated assault. While the foetus may not have been present as a person to suffer at the time of the substance abuse, to be born disabled because of the mother's act is a delayed harm - no different from if she had strung a tightrope at neck height on a path that her kids liked to ride bikes down, knowing that in a couple of weeks they would go out cycling. The exception to this would be ignorance of pregnancy (which would fall under 'disability by misadventure', if such a term were to exist) - and the standard caveats for the mentally unstable. Should the ZEF be aborted before viability (for whatever reason), no harm - no foul.

In terms of prevention - substance abuse should be strongly advised against while pregnant (and normally!) but not prevented through legal means other than those that are in place for everybody. I can envision potential exceptions for a known binge-drinker/addict, or situations which are much more likely to lead to harm, but those would probably fall for the addicts more under the prioritised provision of mental health than legality (though I could be convinced either way on that point). It gets too restrictive, otherwise - the logical chain supporting legal enforcement on the chance of future damage leads to all pregnant women confined to fixed state-proscribed diets which have been carefully calculated to maximise the health of her future offspring, locked in their rooms so there isn't a chance that they could fall over. A good parallel would be feeding alcohol to a young child - it's advised against, but there aren't laws preventing it until it has led directly to harm.

It's something of an ethical grey area, dealing with what-might-bes and hazy causality. If I had to draw a legal line in the sand, though, I think that's where I would draw it.
 
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HonestJoe

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

It depends on the purpose of consuming the harmful substances. Recreational drugs wouldn't be suitable, life-saving medication could well be. That would be a decision for the woman in question, hopefully with medical support and advice.

Just because some behaviour would be considered wrong doesn't necessarily mean it should or could be prevented by any kind of legal enforcement. I can only see a pregnant woman doing something harmful to their child without any other major benefit due to anything other than ignorance or mental imbalance and I'm not convinced either of those are best addressed via criminal law. I'm sure it already can be in exceptional cases (though generally after the fact).

It's a complex area (including the aspect you're leading to) which has no simple answers.
 

WCH

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

You're launching way ahead here. What I'm asking is what I asked: should women be free to do this to their fetuses?

I'm all for protecting the pre-born by any means necessary but...

The *law of the land* says women can out and out KILL those same fetuses so it would probably take some outstanding legal mind to sort through the minutia.
 

ttwtt78640

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

Tough question there, Skippy. "Should women be free to...?", um - yes. If the "damage" (during pregnancy) can be proven, in a court of law, and was either done with criminal intent or through gross negligence then that is already a crime. What exactly would you do to make women not free to do this? Will we assign all women a gov't nanny, upon "properly" reporting their pregnancy, to watch them 24/7 thus ensuring that they adhere to some gov't defined standard of behavior?
 

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

No, it's not that simple of a question.

How can it not be? Her body her choice. End of discussion. You've said that before.
 

ttwtt78640

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

A woman's liberties should never be fewer merely because she is pregnant. Any right she possesses, any liberty, and choices she can make, must be exactly the same, whether she is pregnant or not. Anything else is discrimination against her merely on account of her sex. There is no escaping this situation, and there is no way to justify imposing extra legal duties upon a woman merely for becoming pregnant.

That is not true, for either of the custodial parent(s) of any child either before or after the birth of their child. Child abuse/neglect is not waved based upon gender, or whether that abuse occured prior to birth. Extra legal duties/responsibilities indeed exist for all with children in their custody.

Child Abuse Information

The Bryan Times - Google News Archive Search
 

tessaesque

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

My mother was on Medicaid in Michigan when she was pregnant with my brother. During a UA at one visit she tested positive for marijuana and meth. She was told to cease her drug use immediately and advised that if she continued, particularly with the meth or other "hard" drugs, she would be considered guilty of child abuse against the then-6-month-gestated fetus. When she failed the next UA they put her in the hospital and blocked her access to the drugs. All visitors were screened.

Had she wanted to keep the baby it was pretty much guaranteed at that point that she would have been dealing with CPS/FPS and likely would not have been allowed to take the baby home immediately after birth. Because she was giving the baby up for adoption the state gave her a choice: therapy/rehab or jail time. She offered them a third option: She'd be sterilized if they dropped the charges. They agreed.

In answer to the question in the OP: If a woman has made it clear she intends to carry the child to term, whether to keep herself or give up for adoption, then ABSOLUTELY somebody should step in if the woman is actively participating in activities which she knows can/will harm the fetus. That is not to say she should be thrown in jail or forcefully sterilized or any other extreme "state-control" scenario. Therapy, rehab, counselling, and state intervention at birth are all viable and (IMO) necessary options that must be available. If the woman neglects the fetus or harms the fetus during pregnancy, there are serious risks of that harm continuing in other ways post-birth. The idea that we can't intervene while the baby resides in the uterus is ridiculous, especially when the precedent is set that we MUST intervene once the baby is born.

Now, if the woman doesn't WANT the pregnancy but lacks the means to acquire an abortion, if she rejects attempts to get her off the harmful substances then the state has a vested interest in helping her acquire one. A child born to a drug user or alcohol abuser will often be plagued by challenges that don't present themselves until early childhood (3-5)....from mental deficiencies to physical abnormalities to developmental delays...and it's mostly avoidable with the right approach.

I think it's a bit hypocritical to rail on about the rights of a woman over her body during the pregnancy, acting as if it's somehow sacrosanct..but the minute she gives birth we'll jump in and snatch the kid because NOW all of a sudden the risk to the child matters. I'm pro-choice in the sense that a woman should have access to a safe abortion prior to the point of viability unless the fetus is NOT viable or the mother's life is in jeopardy. At the same time, I don't think that necessarily means that we should have absolutely no say in sexual care (including prenatal care) and a woman's responsibilities. If we can pick organ recipients based upon their likelihood of risky behavior, if we can dictate behaviors for those undergoing weight loss procedures, if we can demand that doctors with specific specialties meet specific standards in EVERY OTHER AREA of health care...then we should be able to do the exact same things with pregnancy and sexual care. Nobody's "right" is trampled on by demanding better quality clinics or doctors, and a woman's "right" to abuse her fetus shouldn't be greater than her "right" to abuse her born child if she intends on carrying the child to term.
 

JayDubya

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Re: Should women have a right to brain-damage their fetuses (e.g. with substances)?

You're launching way ahead here. What I'm asking is what I asked: should women be free to do this to their fetuses?

They currently are, but that's incredibly stupid.

If you consume a teratogen when you know you're pregnant - alcohol, cocaine, etc - you're damn right you should be placed where you are monitored and can't access those things for the safety of the kid you assaulted.
 
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