Abortion and Men

W.J. Astore

“My body, my choice” is a common refrain for women in the pro-choice movement. I happen to agree with it. What women choose to do when they get pregnant is truly none of my business.

Photo by Alex Brandon, AP

Yet the abortion debate swirls and twists and roars as if men played absolutely no role in getting women pregnant. As if all pregnancies were some kind of immaculate conceptions.

Our society and culture puts almost all the onus and responsibility (and, often enough, blame) on women for getting pregnant. For pro-lifers, a woman, once pregnant, is then obligated to have a baby and care for it until adulthood, else put it up for adoption.

But what about the father’s obligation? After all, unless we’re talking the Virgin Mary here, she didn’t get pregnant alone. (And even the Virgin Mary had help of a godly kind.)

I’d have a bit more tolerance for pro-lifers if they’d agreed to these rules:

  1. The biological father is also responsible, financially and legally and otherwise, for raising the baby until adulthood.
  2. If the father isn’t married to the mother in question, and the mother keeps the child, he is legally obligated to pay for child support. For argument’s sake, let’s say he’s obligated to contribute 20% of his pay until the child reaches the age of eighteen.

If men were held legally and morally responsible for all the children they fathered, and this was strictly enforced by society and the state, with deadbeat dads becoming society’s new outcasts, I wonder how long it would take for abortion to be made legal and universally available in America?

51 thoughts on “Abortion and Men

  1. Dear LtCol. Astore,

    I appreciate your views of the abortion issue facing America today. However, I see some flaws in your thinking as the abortion issue opens up a number of more related issues that your views need to be dealt with.

    First of all, what business does any level of government have in determining moral issues of any citizens? Once again, we see government overstepping it’s Constitutional duties by undertaking this issue. Answer this aspect of the debate first.

    Secondly, “My body, my choice” is true and applies to all of us. But, how does any role of government deal with the act of using your body to commit murder? As you know, life begins at conception. How can murder of an unborn be justified morally? It can’t be!

    Lastly, the key to all of this is that America has has become an immoral nation and abortion has encourage immoral activities by offering an easy way to end any self responsibility of women and men in their illicit personal conduct.

    And, when you think it through, there is no way government can ever enforce penalties for unwanted pregnancies, nor should government offer to provide for such. Abortion is nothing more than a selfish act!

    Joseph M. Grimm
    Major, USAF Retired

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 1. Yes, I agree government shouldn’t dictate morality. Thus it should stay out of abortion, which I see primarily as a medical issue and also one of bodily autonomy.

      2. “Life begins at conception.” Yes, as a Roman Catholic, I was taught that. And if one believes human life is fully realized at the moment of conception, then one could argue that abortion is murder. But not all people believe this; indeed, most Americans support abortion under certain conditions, e.g. rape, incest, life of the mother in danger, serious pre-birth defects. Are these also “murder”? Is the majority wrong? Who is to dictate here? If you say “the government,” see point (1).

      3. I agree, America is an immoral nation. I don’t think access to abortion encourages sex, which is what I think you mean by “immoral activities.” And who decides sex is “immoral”? The government? See (1). Religion? America is a land of multiple faiths.

      Abortion as a selfish act: How do you know? Have you had one? Seriously, talk to women who’ve had abortions. Listen to their reasons. I think you’ll discover it’s rarely a selfish act, nor is it an easy one.

      Thanks for your comment, which reveals the wide range of opinions on this matter in America.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. “As you know, life begins at conception.”

      That assertion is religious doctrine. No one should be bound by it unless he/she chooses to espouse that doctrine. And the state (meaning any government) should have no right to force the consequences of that doctrine on anyone.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Same thing I said before. Talk to women who’ve had abortions. Listen to their reasons. I think you’ll find it’s not about selfishness.

        To say that all abortions are selfish truly shows a lack of empathy and compassion.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. After reading days’ worth of analysis and speculation about the SCOTUS leak, I have a new pro-choice slogan:

    “Stop Abortion: Mandate Male Sterilization”

    But of course, men cannot be expected to relinquish control of their bodies like that. Sauce for the goose…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Unasked Questions About Abortion

    With abortion surging into the spotlite, almost everybody has “Yes” or “No” answers to the following standard questions:

    1. Does a Woman have a Human Right to an abortion?
    2. Does a Fetus have a Human Right to be born?

    But there are several arguably much more important Questions that nobody is even asking, let alone answering:

    1. Does the “Right” to an abortion include the “Right” to make somebody else pay for it? On what basis is somebody who is totally against abortion ~ for whatever reason, secular or sectarian ~ forced to pay taxes that fund the provision of abortion services? Has that question ever been asked by either pro- or anti-abortion advocates, activists, and actionists? Or any politician, pundit, propagandist, or anybody else?

    2. Does anybody believe that outlawing abortion will actually end it? Abortion clinics all over the nation report surges in patient-clients from out-of-state. And for those who can’t afford a trip out-of-state, there are always folks ready, willing, able, and available to bring back the good ole days of the back alley “clinics.” Coat hanger, anybody?

    3. How many Homes For unWanted Children and uWC Adoption Services have the anti-abortion folks set up as real world alternatives to what they like to call a “holocaust”? At this point, they obviously care more about the Fetus before it is born, than they do about what happens to the unWanted Child after it is.

    4. How is forcing a woman to carry to full-term a Fetus that she does not want any different than Involuntary Servitude, aka Slavery? Wasn’t there a Civil War and a Constitutional Amendment that supposedly eliminated that? At least when it came to former Slaves? But apparently not for Women when it concerns their own bodies.

    Questions 1 and 4 are the by-far more significant; 2 and 3 merely call attention to anti-abortionist ignorance of history [ie, Prohibition, our “War On Drugs,” and abortion before Roe v Wade] and their indifference to and hypocrisy about UnWanted Children.

    Question 4 lays it right on the line for all those folks who like to wrap themselves in the flag while carrying a Bible, and claim that abortion is “Anti-American”; and is a significant player in what is destroying this nation and preventing it from being “Great Again.” Or, we are now told, from becoming “Great Again, Again.”

    And Question 1 challenges pro-Choice folks to answer the bottom-line question: Should government funds at any level raised by taxes and/or debt be used to provide abortion services? And it challenges pro-Life folks to even ask it.

    Particularly if the same argument ~ that someone who is against abortion should not have to pay for other peoples’ abortions with their present and future tax dollars ~ is applied to other government spending. Such as having to pay taxes to pay for an undeclared, unconstitutional, illegal, and immoral 20-year “Forever War.” Or the US/Russia War in Ukraine.

    And one last Unasked Question: If a government has the authority and power to prohibit abortions, what will prevent that government from mandating abortions when it serves the purposes of the owners and operators of that government?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Not easy questions! But I’ll take a shot:

      1. A “human right” to an abortion: I’d say a woman has a human right to control her own body, including a right to abort an unwanted or dangerous pregnancy.
      2. To me, a fetus is not fully human until born. Speaking of “human rights” for the fetus is therefore nonsensical.

      More answers:

      1. Yes, this issue has been raised and is hotly debated, e.g. the whole issue of federal funds for abortion. Personally, the short answer here is “no.”

      2. The answer here is “no,” but abortion opponents don’t care. And if women die in back alley abortions, I think most of these “pro-lifers” would say she deserved it.

      3. Yes, this is true. The fetus has been idealized as an innocent child that must be protected from “murder.” Once the baby’s born, though, it’s largely on the mother to care for it. These are the same people who work to cut child care benefits, food stamps, etc. and who complain about the “wrong” kind of mother having too many kids. Consistency in being “pro-life” is not their strong suit. They’re more “pro-fetus.”

      4. They don’t see carrying a baby to term as “servitude.” They see it as a blessing from God. So they wouldn’t even understand your question here.

      Your last unasked question: The government used to involuntarily sterilize people so they couldn’t have kids, re: the infamous decision that “three generations of imbeciles are enough.” https://education.blogs.archives.gov/2017/05/02/buck-v-bell/

      Eugenics was quite popular in the U.S., so much so that Nazi Germany took some cues on eugenics from us in the 1930s.

      So, if the government can outlaw abortion, it can also make one mandatory. Because it’s really all about power. Power over women’s bodies and their autonomy. Who is to have that power, the state or the individual? I prefer the latter.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. LtCol. Astore, my 42-year old daughter is a gynaecologist in Madison WI
    I talked to her about how she deals with abortion.
    Here is a person who deals with the consequences of this on a regular basis – not some raving busybody moralist.
    She told me she only has 4-rules in dealing with the subject:

    1. I will only discuss the issue with my patients and their husbands in my office.
    2. All cases are different.
    3. What we decide to do in each case is NOBODY ELSE’S BUSSINESS!
    4. There is no right “answer” to the abortion issue.

    My rule is only one, and much simpler:
    1. Don’t approve of abortion – then don’t have one!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Abortion should not be a problem. Free contraceptives should be available to all. Women do not get abortions because they like them. Everything should be done to allow women to know ASAP when they are pregnant to end the pregnancy ASAP if they want to do so.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Personally, I strongly feel that abortions, as well as critical health services and long-term-care residences, should not be for-profit. (Why is it that nothing is off-limits to big business interests?) …

    Being free nations, society cannot prevent anyone from bearing children; society can, however, educate all young people for the most important job ever, even those high-schoolers who plan to remain childless. If nothing else, such curriculum could offer students an idea/clue as to whether they’re emotionally suited for the immense responsibility and strains of parenthood.

    As high school curriculum, however, it would be mandatory learning, unlike with ‘free parenting courses available for adults’ outside the school system. Certainly, some people will argue that expectant adults can easily enough access the parenting experience and advice of other parents via Internet literature, not to mention arranged group settings. However, such information may in itself be in error or misrelated/misinterpreted and therefor is understandably not as beneficial as knowing the actual child development science behind why the said parental practice would or would not be the wisest example to follow.

    As for the likely argument that high school parenting courses would bore thus repel students from attending the classes to their passable-grade completion, could not the same reservation have been put forth in regards to other currently well-established and valued course subjects, both mandatory and elective, at the time they were originally proposed?

    In addition, the flipside to that argument is, such curriculum may actually result in a novel effect on student minds, thereby stimulating interest in what otherwise can be a monotonous daily high-school routine. (Some exceptionally receptive students may even be inspired to take up post-secondary studies specializing in child psychological and behavioural disorders.) …

    I feel that by not teaching child development science to high school students it is like we, societally, are implying that anyone can comfortably enough go forth with unconditionally bearing children with whatever minute amount of such vital knowledge, if anything at all, they happen to have acquired over time. It’s as though we’ll somehow, in blind anticipation, be innately inclined to fully understand and appropriately nurture our children’s naturally developing minds and needs. …

    The health of ALL children needs to be of real importance to us ALL — and not just concern over what other parents’ children might or will cost us as future criminals or costly cases of government care, etcetera — regardless of how well our own developing children are doing. A physically and mentally sound future should be every child’s fundamental right — along with air, water, food and shelter — especially considering the very troubled world into which they never asked to enter. … Mindlessly minding our own business on such matters has too often proven humanly devastating.

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  7. I want to mod your closer and instead of the heinous outcome cited, give it an productive life-affirming focus: “If men were held legally and morally responsible for all the children they fathered, and this was strictly enforced by society and the state, with deadbeat dads becoming society’s new outcasts, I wonder how long it would take for”…crime to be drastically reduced and general quality of life dramatically increased, especially among those communities where large percentages of fathers are absent.” The best outcome you can posit for the presence of fathers is the improved availability of abortions? Progressivism!

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  8. The post above is quite literally whataboutism. I skipped past the commentary, which is undoubtedly fair yet pointless. Won’t be solved by criminalizing abortion, compelling women to give birth, or forcing men to pay up. Goes a lot deeper than any of those responses. Was predictable several U.S. Supreme Court appointments ago — despite protestations otherwise — that this settled matter of law (unsettled religiously, morally, socially) was coming back into the cross hairs. It’s one of several intractable issues that is plainly nonresolvable and no one’s long game will prevail. Guaranteed to cause more suffering either way it goes, as if we don’t have enough other problems with which to contend.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, it is quite literally whataboutism. 🙂

      Still, it’s fascinating to see how predominantly male legislatures make the rules on abortion, even as those same legislatures virtually ignore the role of the men involved in getting women pregnant.

      Sad to say there’s still the attitude of: Oh, you got pregnant? Your fault. Now you have to have the baby. No choice. Oh, the man skipped town, or maybe that man was even a rapist or family member? Again, too bad. Got to have that baby because, well, babies are precious!

      Oh, you need money and child care support now that the baby’s born? Get a job, sister! Oh, can’t find child care for your baby? Tough shit, sister. Should have thought of that when you were having sex/getting raped.

      If this isn’t the sign of a sick society, I don’t know what is.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. It is curious that a fetus which is not yet a person, is given priority at the expense of the actual person that carries the fetus. My take is that the desire to punish the mother is paramount, driven by the always satisfying feeling of self-righteousness felt by those convicting her. It puts me in mind of the Inquisition where those who judged were convinced they were doing God’s work (the ultimate in self-righteousness) by torturing/killing a person who had strayed from the path of salvation. As was proven by the many who failed to make a case in their defense, there could be no argument against those who possessed certainty.

        Liked by 2 people

  9. Meanwhile, in Other News:

    Biden Already Willing to Increase His $813 Billion Military Budget Request: Congress is pressuring the administration to increase the massive request to match inflation, which reached 8.5% in March
    by Dave DeCamp https://news.antiwar.com/2022/05/06/biden-already-willing-to-increase-his-813-billion-military-budget-request/

    Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks said Friday that the Biden administration is ready to increase the president’s massive $813 billion military budget request for 2023 to keep up with inflation.

    Biden’s request is more than $30 billion than what Congress authorized for 2022, representing a 4% increase. But with inflation reaching 8.5% in March, Congress wants to spend more.

    Hicks said the administration is willing to work with Congress to create a budget that matches current inflation numbers. “Where inflation will be in September, let alone this time next year, we don’t know, but we want to work with Congress on the ‘23 budget to make sure we have the purchasing power for this program,” she said.

    Hicks said if inflation soars higher than expected, the administration could always ask Congress for supplemental funds on top of the military budget.

    Hawks in Congress are also looking to increase the budget because they feel it does not do enough to counter China, which the Pentagon’s National Defense Strategy has identified as the top “threat” facing the US military.

    A group of lawmakers sent a letter to the leaders of the House Appropriations Committee calling for US Indo-Pacific Command to be given the full funds it requested after it appeared Biden’s planned budget didn’t give the command everything it wants.

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  10. Abortion is a selfish act? Really? Who are you to say such a thing?

    When I was thirty-five (my son had just turned three), I was diagnosed bipolar & I was on a cocktail of meds … too many to list here. I was also married & unable to take birth control because of said meds … I couldn’t use a diaphram because I was allergic to spermicide. Although we were very careful, I did become pregnant. I wanted that child desperately but both my OB/GYN & my psychiatrist advised me to have an abortion because of the dire affects of the medication I was taking … more than one of them would produce major birth defects, the kind that would require constant nursing for the duration of my child’s life.

    IT WAS NOT SELFISHNESS ON MY PART FOR DECIDING TO HAVE AN ABORTION.

    Women do not get pregnant & then one day wake up & decide to abort their babies, like they’re decided to cut their hair or get their nails done. This is a hard, gut-wrenching decision & it breaks your fucking heart!

    Anyone who thinks different just doesn’t know & doesn’t care & honestly, you should STFU.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I cannot imagine the kind of twisted mind that decrees that a severely physically or mentally damaged baby, who would need constant care and who might outlive his/her parents, must be born, only to be subjected to a life of pain and/or vegetative state. THAT is respect for life?

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Thank you SILVERAPPLEQUEEN. Anybody who holds the position that abortion is a selfish act by the woman is reprehensible. With zero understanding of the human condition, let alone a women’s position.
    I 100% agree with you that anyone who thinks this just doesn’t know & doesn’t care and should just STFU.
    Thank you for your comment my dear.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. The way the abortion issue has been approached in this country tells me that the issue is really about women. It’s about women’s freedom. If it were truly about abortion we would have to consider who is responsible. We would have to talk about rape and coercion.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. More thoughts on this issue:

    1. Stating the obvious, we have a thoroughly politicized and partisan court of “justices.”
    2. Gorsuch and Kavanaugh allegedly promised they wouldn’t rule against Roe v. Wade. So much for their integrity.
    3. The vehemence some people have in blaming women for getting abortions suggests the old Madonna/whore complex is still prevalent. A woman is supposed to be pure until marriage, but if she’s impure and gets pregnant, regardless of the reason (rape, incest, doesn’t matter), she’s a whore who’s forfeited her right over her body and has to have the baby. And if a woman who’s married wants an abortion, she must be deluded or selfish or sick.

    What happens if a pregnant woman carelessly trips down stairs and has a miscarriage? Is that negligent homicide? Sounds crazy, of course, but if the life of the fetus is supreme, you could see it happen here in Gilead.

    Reminder: 7 out of 9 justices are Catholic or former Catholic (Gorsuch). To be raised Catholic is to learn repeatedly that abortion is murder. Sotomayor is apparently the only Catholic justice who still supports Roe v Wade.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was raised Catholic. I was 13 when Roe became law. Even before it was codified, sermons at Mass had become unbearable. They weren’t about the readings, they were diatribes against feminism & “lewd” behavior & selfishness & the end of the family & if anything drove me out of the Church, that was it. & I was a really devote little Catholic girl at one time, totally devoted to the Holy Mother.

      & now … the whole talk about “my body, my choice” has been high-jacked by the GOP to justify their selfishness about almost anything at all … mostly not wearing masks while in close contact with other people … or refusing to get vaccinated … my Catholic family are among these people, even as they celebrate the end of reproductive choice.

      It’s really tough. I love these people but …

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Given that one of the central tenets of the Catholic Church has always been a Borg-like mission to create more Catholics, it would certainly seem as if the utter proscription of abortion and contraceptives has a practical basis. Same as with much other Church doctrine.

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      1. The Church is literally a patriarchy. If priests got pregnant, or if nuns had actual power and equality within the Church, things might be a bit different.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Undoubtedly.

          From my reading, I’ve seen that, over the centuries, the Catholic Church has instituted uncounted “rules” that have little or no basis in the Scriptures it’s supposedly based on. Your madonna/whore example is a case in point. To the Church, all women are whores; second-class citizens, essentially, and therefore, have no power over doctrine or Church structure. And yet, Christ chose Mary Magdalene to walk with him, right?

          As you said, Bill, it’s all in the name of patriarchy. Everything else is window dressing.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. “I say that homosexuality is not just a form of sex; it’s a form of love and it deserves our respect for that reason. In fact, when my children were young, I’d have been proud to have Stephen [Fry] as their babysitter and I’d tell them they were lucky. And if anyone came to my door as a babysitter wearing holy orders, I’d first call a cab and then the police” – yes Lt.Colonel, your old nemesis Christopher Hitchens again!

            Liked by 1 person

  14. Chris Hedges, tough and honest, as usual:
    “The Democratic Party – which had 50 years to write Roe v Wade into law with Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama in full control of the White House and Congress at the inception of their presidencies – is banking its electoral strategy around the expected Supreme Court decision to lift the judicial prohibition on the ability of states to enact laws restricting or banning abortions.

    I doubt it will work.

    The Democratic Party’s hypocrisy and duplicity is the fertilizer for Christian fascism. Its exclusive focus on the culture wars and identity politics at the expense of economic, political, and social justice fueled a right-wing backlash and stoked the bigotry, racism, and sexism it sought to curtail. Its opting for image over substance, including its repeated failure to secure the right to abortion, left the Democrats distrusted and reviled.”

    https://chrishedges.substack.com/p/jesus-endless-war-and-the-rise-of

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for the link, Dennis. Very interesting. Political power through religious outrage. Let’s pull together our “fringe Christian friends.” And here we are …

        Liked by 2 people

        1. And now back to war spending Bill….the theme of your site:

          “Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks said Friday that the Biden administration is ready to increase the president’s massive $813 billion military budget request for 2023 to keep up with inflation.

          Biden’s request is more than $30 billion than what Congress authorized for 2022, representing a 4% increase. But with inflation reaching 8.5% in March, Congress wants to spend more.

          Hicks said the administration is willing to work with Congress to create a budget that matches current inflation numbers. “Where inflation will be in September, let alone this time next year, we don’t know, but we want to work with Congress on the ‘23 budget to make sure we have the purchasing power for this program,” she said”

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  15. i’m curious, Colonel. Are You familiar with Florida Senator Rick Scott’s “11 Point Plan To Rescue America”? https://rescueamerica.com/11-point-plan/

    He released it on 22 Feb 22, right at the height of the pre-“special military operation” buildup to the invasion of Ukraine on 24 Feb. And as a result, it probably slipped past lots of folks’ attention. i know it certainly did mine.

    It immediately calls to mind Newt Gingrich’s “Contract With America” back in the early 90s and ~ given the fact that Scott is in charge of the 2022 GOP Senate Election Campaign, we are apt to hear more and more about his 11 Points.

    It is, needless to say, what folks in the business call a “target-rich environment” for review, examination, analysis, reaction, and response. Lots to chew on and mull over in it.

    I’m curious if You have any reaction and response to it; particularly his Point 11:

    “ We are Americans, not globalists. America will be dependent on NO other country. We will conduct no trade that takes away jobs or displaces American workers. Countries who oppose us at the UN will get zero financial help from us. We will be energy independent and build supply chains that never rely on our adversaries. We will only help countries that are willing to defend themselves, like Israel.”

    He then goes on to specifics:

    ~ We will unapologetically lead the world by example. A world without American leadership would be a very dark world.
    ~ Adhere to the New Monroe Doctrine – America will not allow any global enemy, such as China, Russia, or Radical Islam, to grow
    their presence in our hemisphere.
    ~ No foreign aid to any country that habitually opposes us at the UN.
    ~ We will not pay any dues to the United Nations or any international organization that undermines the national interests of the USA.
    ~ We will make our international allies pay their fair share for their own defense. We will not send our kids to do what their kids will not do.
    ~ Our military will not be used as a peace-keeping force, it exists to protect us by intimidating or killing our enemies.
    ~ Nation-building does not work, we will not waste our treasure or troops doing it.
    ~ We will always defend our allies, starting with Israel.
    ~ We will treat our enemies like enemies.
    ~ No adversarial foreign government or corporation controlled by an adversarial foreign government can purchase
    American land.
    ~ The weather is always changing. We take climate change seriously, but not hysterically. We will not adopt nutty policies that harm our economy or our jobs.
    ~ America will be dependent on NO other country. We will conduct no trade that takes away jobs or displaces American workers. Countries who oppose us at the UN will get zero financial help from us. We will be energy independent and build supply chains
    that never rely on our adversaries. We will only help countries that are willing to defend themselves, like Israel.
    ~ We will gradually end all imports from Communist China until a new regime honors basic human rights and freedoms.
    ~ We will build supply chains that rely solely on American workers and allies. We will not be at the mercy of our enemies for medications or any essential commodities.
    ~ We will terminate any trade deal that takes away American jobs.
    ~ America will be energy independent.

    Like I said: definitely a Target-Rich Environment, eh? Any thoughts on this or any of the rest of the 11 Points?

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    1. I love the repetition of Israel. Israel not only seems to be our most important ally; to Scott, it’s our only ally.

      And of course the confusion of climate change with daily changes in weather. If any state should worry about rising ocean levels and more intense storms, it’s Florida. But, nah, it’ll be fine, according to Scott.

      I’d like to see America end its imports from China! I hope Americans are prepared for a lot of bare shelves.

      I do think he’s largely right about nation-building and the need to protect American jobs.

      And leading by example? All depends on the example we set. It’s not a very good one, is it?

      Liked by 1 person

  16. And just read Your latest on Tom Dispatch, Colonel: “The Last Good Guys? Five Reasons Why Washington Can’t Break Its War Addiction.”

    Once again, You nailed it on all cylinders; this time five.

    And i got a big chuckle reading: “Despite the evidence of decline and dysfunction all around us, many Americans continue to take pride and comfort in the idea that the U.S. military remains the finest fighting force in all of history — a claim advanced by presidents George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Joe Biden, among so many other boosters.”

    This is the military that has not won a war ~ or even come close ~ in 77 years today, since “V-E Day” for Oceania and “Victory Day” for Eurasia.

    One can only wonder what the source of that “pride and comfort” could be.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You wrote: “In truth, the U.S. doesn’t really have to be involved in every war around and undoubtedly wouldn’t be if certain actors (corporate as well as individual) didn’t feel it was just so PROFITABLE. If my five answers above were ever taken seriously here, there might indeed be a wiser and more peaceful path forward for this country. But that can’t happen if the forces that PROFIT from the status quo — where bellum (war) is never ante- or post- but simply ongoing — remain so powerful. THE QUESTION IS, OF COURSE, HOW TO TAKE THE PROFITS OF EVERY SORT OUT OF WAR and radically downsize our military (especially its overseas “footprint”), so that it truly becomes a force for “national security,” rather than national insecurity.” [EMPHASES added.]

        Permit me to share something i wrote 12 years ago this coming Veterans Day, that addresses Your very Question.

        A Veterans’ Day Weekend Reflection, with an Indecent Proposal and a Question (circa 2010)

        “It was the Eleventh Minute of the Eleventh Hour of the Eleventh Day of the Eleventh Month…..”

        And next Year, 2011, it will be “of the Eleventh Year….” Ninety-three years to the minute since “The End” of “The War To End All War,” in many otherWays and Wise known as World War I.

        As a retired Centurion of The Empire ~ beginning, in this lifetime at least, Once Upon A Time, long, long, so Very Long ago in a place called Viet Nam ~ I spent my entire professional life (some 28years total, 22 on active duty) studying and waging war, or preparing myself and others to wage war. And during that lifetime, War has not changed. At all. Only the Battlefields have changed. And the Weapons. And the Enemies. And, above All, The Victims….. : “…the Names of the Places, and the Faces of the Wives and the Sons, and the Daughters; of the Pain, and the Horror, and the cost-price dis-efficiencies and externalities of the Slaughters…”

        But the Perpetrators of War have not changed. Nor have the Perpetuators. And certainly not the Justifiers.

        But beyond all Them, what (and thus who) really hasn’t really changed in any way at all are The Beneficiaries of War: The Chosen Ones; those who, by War, expropriate Wealth and Power, so as to extract and consume and generate even more Power and more Wealth, so as to extract and obliterate even more. And More. And ever and even MORE, and MORE… . These Ones have most definitively, definitely, and decidedly NOT Changed. At all.

        Since long, long, so Very Long before that eleventh minute of that eleventh hour of that eleventh day of that eleventh month, the Perpetrators, Perpetuators, Justifiers, and Beneficiaries ~ especially The Beneficiaries ~ of War have not changed.

        So, one might be moved to ask: So What? Now What?

        So. imagine ~ if you Can and Dare ~ if even for but a moment, that there are no Beneficiaries. That the answer to the simply elegant and ultimately eloquent Question of “War: CUI BONO?” is, quite simply elegantly and ultimately eloquently, “NoBody.”

        EnVision, if You can, a world in which NoBody gains AnyThing , at All, from War. At least not AnyThing Economic or Political; at least not Wealth or Power.

        EnVision, if You dare, a World in which no employer, supervisor, employee, stockholder; no politician, bureaucrat, political appointee, general or underlinging warrior; no imam or priest or rabbi nor any of their various and variously true believers; no conqueror, emperor, führer, or other self- (or media-)proclaimed would-be/wannabe god-on-Earth (or his Designated Liege)…… NoBody gains AnyThing from, by, through, with, as a result of, or because of War. NoBody. AnyThing. At all.

        Because if you can imagine that World: then, perhaps you will thus begin to Begin to see exactly How and Why, then, that the Perpetrators, Perpetuators, and Justifiers of War could and would be castrated: and thus rendered inert, irrelevant, and bankrupt; defeated, disarmed and dismantled, destroyed, dispersed, and disappeared.

        And, even more importantly, you would begin to Begin to understand exactly Why and How, then, that the Beneficiaries of War would and could be not merely similarly castrated and rended and thus rendered inertly nil, but indeed also thus crucified on a Cross of Gold, made in their own image and fashioned by their own hand.

        And that finally and thus, with NoBody to benefit, gain, or otherWays profit from War, that there would Be No War.

        So What? Now What? Any Suggestions? Oh, and the Question is: When will You weary of the all the BullShit?

        Happy Veterans Day. See you at 11:11:11 on 11.11.11. /s/ jeff

        Appendix: A No War-For-Profit Amendment to the Constitution of The United States

        1. Any and/or All organizations or individuals doing business with the Military-Industrial-FatherLand Security Complex (MIFLS-C) will and thus must be publicly-held NON-PROFIT enterprises.

        2. No individual, bank, and/ or any other financial or other institution (including foreign nations’ and their money-lenders) doing business with the MIFLS-C may earn any interest or other profit from loans, bonds, or any other fiduciary instruments used by the Government of The United States to finance or otherwise “pay for” this nation’s Wars-by-Credit Card of the 21st century.

        3. No print, electronic, and/or internet-based news or otherwise info-entertainment media organization may be owned and/or operated by any organization or individual doing business with the MIFLS-C.

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        1. I recall reading in the 1930s of WWI veterans working to take the profit out of war so as to prevent another WWI. A few years later, they got WWII.

          That doesn’t mean we give up. It just means we have to work and think harder. We must find another way, a better way, or we’re headed toward our doom as a species.

          Like

  17. What a joke Schumer, Pelosi, and the rest of them are. They’re just using the abortion issue to gain money and votes. From The Guardian:

    “Schumer seeks to capitalize on voters’ fury over abortion rights
    The US Senate will today channel a week of anger, acrimony and fractious debate over abortion rights into the formal step of setting up a vote to enshrine a woman’s right to the procedure into law.

    By passing cloture (the official term for cutting off debate), senators will move towards a floor vote Wednesday on legislation proposed by the Connecticut Democrat Richard Blumenthal. Abortion rights defenders have been demanding action ever since the supreme court’s draft ruling overturning the 1973 Roe v Wade opinion was leaked last week.

    Democrats know the legislation is doomed to fall, because it won’t reach the 60 votes it needs in the bitterly divided chamber.

    But Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer will not consider it an outright failure. He’s playing a longer game, in which he sees Republicans’ refusal to support abortion rights working in Democrats’ favor in November’s midterms. After all, polls show overwhelming support nationally among voters for abortion rights.

    “Every American will see how every senator stands,” Schumer said at a press conference Sunday in which he called the supreme court’s draft ruling “an abomination”.

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  18. A late comment, but I had a “what-if” epiphany today, along the lines of your “What if men could get pregnant” theme:
    What if we made abortion 100% legal throughout the pregnancy (for both women and men ; ) but required that the baby be delivered alive and whole and provided to the mother, who would then be required to kill the baby with her own hands? How much do you think the abortion rate would drop? Res Ipsa Loquitur.

    Like

    1. Somebody has been sampling the vino …

      Seriously, most abortions occur early, before week 15, so there would be no “baby” to hand to the mother “to kill.” Most late-term abortions are related to health issues, either of the baby or mother or both. So you’re suggesting a mother whose life is threatened by a pregnancy gone wrong should have “to kill” her (premature and aborted) baby? Or a mother should have “to kill” a fetus that already has serious birth defects, and which may not be viable outside the womb?

      What makes you think this is in any way compassionate, or sensible, or morally defensible?

      Basically, you want to tell a mother what to do in all cases. If she gets pregnant, she must carry the baby to term, even if it kills her, and even if that baby is seriously deformed.

      I find this incomprehensible. It’s just plain wrong — and wrongheaded.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. When Bracing Views proposes a thought experiment, it is ‘whataboutism”.
        When a reader does the same, they are sampling the wine.

        I’ll go with your line of thinking though, to extend this thought experiment: Apply my scenario in only those cases prior to 15 weeks (which includes ~95% of all abortions…mostly abortions of convenience). It is certainly feasible to extract a living fetus prior to 15 weeks. Then hand it off to Mom to complete the abortion. What would Mom do, knowing she is going to see that 14 week old baby in the flesh?

        As the old saying goes, if you can’t look your decision in the eye, something is seriously wrong.

        And so back to my original question (which you avoided answering):

        What do you think would happen under this model, to the rate of abortion for 95% of the cases?
        Again, Res Ipsa Loquitur.

        I do think of the mother. But you disregard the child in all cases. I find that incomprehensible, and morally bankrupt. And as an aside, the faulty generalization you push (justifying unlimited/unrestricted abortion based on a very small percentage of health-related situations) is a fallacy/faulty logic. But you know this.

        My wine tastes much better than that kool-aid you are samping, btw.

        Like

      2. What are “abortions of convenience”? Nearly all women who’ve had an abortion don’t find it “convenient.” It’s a very difficult decision for most. Again, have you talked to women who’ve had abortions? Their reasons? Their feelings? You haven’t answered this question.

        Also, a 14-week “baby” is a contradiction in terms.

        These women do look their decisions in the eye, perhaps not as literally as you’d like, but in their mind’s eye, they know what they’re doing, they have their reasons, and they deserve control over their bodies and lives, just as we all do.

        “I disregard the child”: A fetus is not a child. If you think a fetus is a child whose life is more important than the mother’s, we will never agree.

        Liked by 2 people

  19. I had a couple simple Rules if I ever gave advice to my two daughters, but they never needed any, but so here goes: simply put– Teach them: my body my rules…! A couple more for extra Credit : question everything, but your own intuition. Lastly from a Firefighter Dad who dealt with “Accidents” on the job: Don’t wear holey Underwear because we may have to cut your clothes off to see where you’re Injured.

    Liked by 1 person

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