Wednesday, December 20, 2006

A response to J.J. Thompson

A few weeks ago my "philosophy" teacher, Bob (his name has been changed for his protection), decided that he wanted start a fiery debate or at least spark some kind of life in a very bored, very uninterested class who apparently thought that Aristotle was just too hard. He therefore presented us with the issue of abortion. To give us an argument from the pro-choice side he gave us an article written by J.J. Thompson. Here is the main bulk of the argument to give you just a little taste of what I was up against as the only pro-life person in the room:

"... I propose, then, that we grant that the fetus is a person from the moment of conception. How does the argument go from here? Something like this, I take it. Every person has a right to life. So the fetus has a right to life. No doubt the mother has a right to decide what shall happen in and to her body; everyone would grant that. But surely a person's right to life is stronger and more stringent than the mother's right to decide what happens in and to her body, and so outweighs it. So the fetus may not be killed; an abortion may not be performed.
It sounds plausible. But now let me ask you to imagine this. You wake up in the morning and find yourself back to back in bed with an unconscious violinist. A famous unconscious violinist. He has been found to have a fatal kidney ailment, and the Society of Music Lovers has canvassed all the available medical records and found that you alone have the right blood type to help. They have therefore kidnaped you, and last night the violinist's circulatory system was plugged into yours, so that your kidneys can be used to extract poisons from his blood as well as your own. The director of the hospital now tells you, "Look, we're sorry the Society of Music Lovers did this to you—we would never have permitted it if we had known. But still, they did it, and the violinist now is plugged into you. To unplug you would be to kill him. But never mind, it's only for nine months. By then he will have recovered from his ailment, and can safely be unplugged from you.
Is it morally incumbent on you to accede to this situation? No doubt it would be very nice of you if you did, a great kindness. But do you have to accede to it? What if it were not nine months, but nine years? Or longer still? What if the director of the hospital says, "Tough luck, I agree, but you've now got to stay in bed, with the violinist plugged into you, for the rest of your life. Because remember this. All persons have a right to life, and violinists are persons. Granted you have a right to decide what happens in and to your body, but a person's right to life outweighs your right to decide what happens in and to your body. So you cannot ever be unplugged from him." I imagine you would regard this as outrageous,
[2] which suggests that something really is wrong with that plausible-sounding argument I mentioned a moment ago."

Now at first glance this analogy seems quite compelling and unique. I mean, no one would say that you are morally obligated to stay hooked up to a random stranger for the rest of your life. So Ms. Thompson is asking us to "check our moral compasses" when thinking about the pro-choice side. It would of course be very nice if you stayed hooked up to a violinist, analogous to a fetus, which she grants is in fact a person, but you are not morally required to do so. Therefore a woman, "hooked up" to an unwanted human inside her body, is not morally obligated to stay "hooked up" to it. Killing, is after all, not wrong when you are defending your own right to life, so are the situations between an unwanted pregnancy and an unwanted violinist parallel? No, they are not.
There are very large differences between being hooked up to the violinist and pregnancy. Being artificially attached to a violinist is not the same as an unborn fetus (which Thompson grants is a person) being connected to a mother. Pregnancy is a natural state. Women become pregnant all the time, it's how we survive. Being artificially attached to a violinist is not natural and frankly you don't see it very often. Removing oneself from the violinist is very different than having an abortion. In the violinist case, when you disconnect, you are withholding treatment and as a result, allowing the violinist to die, but there is no direct killing. Abortion is quite different because abortion is an active removal of a life. Someone has to perform the abortion by removing a living fetus piece by piece from the mother or inserting a chemical that would burn the fetus alive and cause the mother to prematurely deliver a dead child. If Thompson grants that a fetus is a person and persons feel pain, she has to grant that a fetus feels pain. I think our opinion concerning the violinist would be very different if she asked us to cut him up into little pieces in order to escape. Her analogy fails because it does not take into account that removing oneself from a tube and removing a growing life from ones body are two very different methods therefore not analogous.
Thompson's analogy fails again by trying to appeal to our sympathy, or lack thereof, towards the violinist. In that analogy, the man you are hooked up to is a total stranger. According to Thompson you do not have a moral obligation to keep him alive and inconvenience yourself in such an extreme way. It is very different in the case of a pregnant woman. What if she woke up and found herself "hooked up" to her child in the same way she was hooked up to the violinist? Does not a mother have a moral obligation to her children despite inconvenience? According to Thompson's analogy it would be ridiculous for a mother to be obligated to inconvenience herself for the sake of her own child. It equates a woman's relationship to a stranger to a mother's relationship with her own child. Thompson questions us further and asks, what if we were connected to the violinist for the rest of our lives, paralleling that to a mother connected to unwanted children for the rest of her life. If this is true and a mother has no obligation to her child while in the womb, she has no obligation to children outside the womb. Therefore if it is permissable to unhook yourself from the stranger violinist then it is permissable to unhook yourself from you children if they are in fact equal. No one would say that it is permissable for a mother to neglect her children because they inconvenience her therefore Thompson's argument fails again.

"Bob's" response to my response to the article, from what I can read;
"This is very nice discussion of Thompson. I think she CAN respond to your worries but i believe you have drawn out some very nasty consequences of the view. On the other hand , consider that Thompson thinks that though it might not be obligatory to carry the pregnancy to term, it MIGHT be indecent not to do so. As she points out, why do we think that this is less serious a charge? Also remember that this presupposes that the fetus is a person. This isn't really true (at least i think thats what he wrote.) Also note that the simple right to life (something) doesn't work against her criticisms. You ceased to invoke a.... ( I can't read the rest)

Thank you Bob.... apparently Thompson can respond...but fails to address it in her argument.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Apparently Jennifer Marie wants a post!

Here it is darling!!

Now, what to blog?

My new obsession is Dante's La Vita Nuova.
The passion and love of Dante for the beautiful, and possibly imaginary, Beatrice.

Now ladies and gentlemen, my favorite quote.....

Ego Dominus Tuus
Vide Cor Meum
Joyful Love appeared to me, in his hands he held my heart and in his arms,
my lady lay asleep, wrapped in a veil
He awoke her then,
trembling and obedient she ate that burning heart out of his hand.
Weeping i saw Him then depart from me.

Although you can't really get the full meaning or the full passion or idea he was trying to present or express because obviously he wrote it in Italian, the images are the same.
Even in English the language is beautiful.

In the beginning the reader knows that Beatrice is now dead. This gives Dante the liscence to make her into Divine Love. It also makes the reader wonder if Beatrice was even real or just an image. The Summa was "published" the same year Dante claims he first saw Beatrice at age 9 (a symbolic number and consistently used throughout the entire book) so it gives us reason to doubt whether or not she truly existed.

Either way the images are incredible and you can't help but giggle at Dante the entire time. Men obvioulsy haven't evolved much when it comes to passion and infatuation.
Its kind of cute...kind of ridiculous!

so there is my post!

and we strike the PULISH POST button like it was Amy Klobuchar's big fat nose!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

I find you so very repulsive.

Let's cover and issue here ladies and gentlemen, a very sensitive issue...

Let us talk about PORNOGRAPHY

I know, strange and uncomfortable issue.
Why do you think that is?
If it is so natural for a young boy to type in a website and view naked ladies to his hearts content, why do we never really address it? Why is it never really talked about? why is it done in secret?

Why is it a problem?

Why is it a very VERY BIG problem?

Why, that is a lovely question!
Lets take this step by step shall we? The word is greek. Porne- means captive woman, harlot or slave. Graphos- means writting or drawing.
So if we put the two together what to we get? A depiction or description of the activities of whores..........pleasant!

Ok, ok, so the word itself isnt so nice, but i mean, COMEON! who is it hurting honestly!
Well, little boy, you are hurting yourself. You are filling your head with impure images. Images of something that was once sacred, now perverted for your own sexual pleasure.
The problem with pornography is not that it shows too much. Its that it shows too little.
It doesnt show you the dignity of the woman (or judgements here!) you are looking at. It doesnt show you that woman as a young girl, playing with her barbies or sleeping in her crib with her little pigtails, sucking her thumb or sitting on her mommy's lap. You dont see those things. You see an object for pleasure. Something to look at. You dont see someones daughter or sister or niece or grandaughter. All you see are fantasies.
Now your mind works ONLY in fantasies. These images arent real. They are stories. They pervert your sense of reality. You will no longer know what a real and beautiful relationship looks like. Your expectations for your spouse are much to high. You compare her to a fantasy that is not a reality.
The other problem with a fantasy-life is now you have created a monster. A monster that cannot be satisfied. Your expectations for your spouse are too high, you turn to someone else. You go from woman to woman (or man) trying to fulfill your fantasy. Soon your options begin to run out. What do you have to turn to now? more pictures, more movies? How about the little girl sitting on the floor playing with her dolls.
Why yes, yes it is. You have become very, very sick. Who would hurt a child? Who would think of a child in that way?!
Well why not...the actress in that movie last night was once that child.
Your lust cannot be stopped. In your mind that little girl becomes nothing more than another object.
You dont believe me do you?
Ask a rapist, a murderer, a child molestor if they were ever involved in hard core porn. Youd be surprised how many say they were.
What happens is that you are desensitized.
Pornography which was once seen as shocking, taboo illegal or repulsive though still arousing, in time came to be acceptable and comonplace. Pornography disturbes the fragile bonds of family and marriage. It destroys you. It destroys healthy love, real love. it degrades women so that women are no longer people, but cattle.
Ever heard of child pornography?
Disgusting right? Vulgar, Immoral, un-ethical and just plain wrong.
Funny, thats how they used to describe pornography in general.

Pornography is dangerous and wrong.

It hurts not only you but those it depicts. It destroys you slowly till you are nothing but a desire. Everything else no longer matters.
Your family doesnt matter.
Your children dont matter.

What happens to that child that finds daddys magazine under the bed?
Who looks through it, not knowing what it is?
Wondering, why her dad has pictures of women that arent her mother.

you explain to her why you do what you do.

go ahead.

then tell her that she might be able to make a great living doing that one day.

Saturday, March 18, 2006


I am here. Fear not. Can you really trust me? I am a God of Power, as well as a Man of Love, so human and yet so divine.
Just trust. I cannot, and will not fail you. All is well.
Many are praying for you both.
Listen, listen, I am your Lord. Before me there is none other. Just trust Me in everything. Help is here all the time.
The difficult way is nearly over, but you have learnt in it lessons you could learn in no other way. "the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence and the violent take it by force."
Wrest from Me, by firm and simple trust and persistent prayer, the treasures of my kingdom.
Such wonderful things are coming to you, Joy-peace-assurance-security-health-happines-laughter.
Claim big, really big things now. Remember, nothing is too big. Satisfy the longing of My heart to give. Blessing, abundant blessing on you both, now and always.Peace.

Monday, March 06, 2006

I left my heart in the principal's office

Last friday we had adoration at school, we do so every first friday of the month.
I can always expect something to happen to me while in adoration. My mind is quiet and the people around me are quiet and thats when my souls likes to scream at me. During this particular adoration it hadnt even been 5 minutes before my heart began to stur and i suddenly started to cry which isnt THAT un-usual but these were different tears. I cant really describe them but suddenly in the back of my mind i suddenly heard very distinclty, "Go talk to mr. Ferdinandt," (our head of the upper school or principal.) It was so strange that i just decided to ignore it and not pay attention to something so ridiculous. But as i sat there and prayed the voice just kept nagging me and nagging me till i absolutly had to go downstairs and talk to him. When i asked the secretary she said he was in a meeting and that i could leave him a message if i wanted. I said fine and gave up on that endevour dismissing it for insanity. When i got back to the chapel, i suddenly became freezing. I was shaking so hard and i couldnt figure out why. I looked around at the other people in the chapel, and no one seemed to notice the temperature drop. i went another period of the school day in the adoration chapel and i couldnt shake the freezing feeling. Finally fourth period came around and just as i was walking into mrs. spears' very long very boring finance class, mr. ferdinandt came up behind me and asked if i still needed to talk to him. Now this would have been the best time just to back out and say "oh no, im fine, its nothing, im just crazy!" but i suddenly became freezing again and the voice was screaming, "talk to him you ignorant fool!" So i went downstairs with him to his office and sat opposite him while he sat in his desk. Coming into the room i had absolutly no idea what i was going to say to him or how i was going to explane the strange desire to talk to him. So i just sat down with an open mind and allowed him to speak first. He looked right at me and asked,"What is it, Erin?"
At that moment i broke down crying and began to spill my entire life story out to him. Every problem that had been eating away at me for years i began to confess to my highschool principal. I couldnt beleive how even his demeanor helped me. His just sitting there and listening, without any kind of bias or judgment or even his own issues to talk to me about was just the thing i needed. I desperatly needed to talk to someone who didnt have their own problems and who wasnt going to unload them on me when I needed help. I have never told an adult the things i told him before and it was very hard at first but before i knew it i was telling him everything. Everything he said to me after my outburst was exactly what i needed to hear. He suggested that i speak to someome, like a 'psychiotrist' i guess, and that he would happily pay for it and my parents wouldnt need to know because i am 18. I never ever thought of speaking to someone professional about my 'issues' but now that he suggests it, it sounds like the best thing to do and it can only help. He would talk to some of the people he trusted, who were reliable and most likely catholic so they wouldnt try to brain wash me and tell me i need to be sexually active in order to be healthy...( i dont know if that actuall happens but you get the idea)
So, anyway, i never ever thought i would be sitting down with my highschool principal discussing my deepest secrets with him. It really goes to show what kind of school Providence is. It truly has been providential in my life and is truly, truly a blessing, and i really hope to come back and teach someday or send my kids there.
im not quite ready to leave it...but at the same time i am.
Taking it day by day i guess!

Sunday, February 12, 2006

I am a feminist?

The word feminism comes from the word feminine, certain unique characteristics attributed to women. But when you look at women today, they aren’t quite feminine.In fact, Women aren’t women at all anymore.Radical feminism has managed to annihilate all that which makes us who we were created to be. Male and female He created them. Women have fought so hard to make themselves equal to men, when in fact; men and women are not equal at all. We are complementary.We fulfill each other. One was created for the other.If we were equal, we could not exist together as partners, as mates to complete one another. We were both given qualities and natures that accent each other and complement each other.When we eliminate certain natures and gifts that were given to us by God, we set ourselves up for ultimate failure. -We see actually that (to quote our dear Mr. Lasseter,) God’s final creation was his first intention. What was God’s final creation? WOMEN. -Women are the only creatures than can fulfill God’s Covenant. -Unfortunately today we don’t see women as true women anymore.Our society looks at mothers as weak, subordinate and unable to control their own lives. -So we also see so many single mothers today, who "don’t need no baby's daddy."-Marriages are crumbling because those involved have sought to use each other by sterilizing the other. -Sex is selfish and used only to benefit oneself. A lot of times if children are created as a result of a sex they are immediately destroyed, sometimes even if the couple is married.-Men no longer protect women or their dignity. Chivalry has become almost extinct. -- -Men do not respect women, they are taught to be predators and look at women only as sexual objects. -If men are not hunting after women, they are whining after them. -They are completely unmasculine, sissy and unable to defend themselves or others.So what do we do? How do we fix this?The answer is for us women to be women! We must protect our gifts given to us by God. We must be feminine and be what we were created to be. Who better to look at for an example at true feminity but the ultimate perfect women...The Virgin Mary.Mary is a model for all women. From the time Mary is immaculately conceived she shows the feminine attribute of openness and willingness to do God’s work. She reveals to women the unique feminine characteristic of receptivity to life and fruitfulness. Mary said ‘yes’ to God and conceived Jesus. With her ‘yes’ she becomes the new Eve, the woman God first intended. She said yes when Eve said no. Mary then becomes the model of true womanhood and true femininity.
Through out the old and new testament “Fruitfulness” and “fertility” are re-occurring themes. God first Commanded Adam and Eve to be “fruitful’ and multiply, it was his covenant with mankind. Fruitfulness and fertility are constant gifts and blessings given by God to his chosen people as a fulfillment of his covenant with us. Only women are fertile and only women can bear fruit, we fulfill God’s promise. What greater gift could we ask for?
Unfortunately today we see that radical feminism demoralizes and undermines true femininity by rejecting what is unique only to women, fertility. Our society now sees child bearing as a curse and an obstacle to the pursuit of SELF. Children get in the way of our careers and our excessive life styles. Fertility and life are being destroyed and it is being done through contraception and abortion.
Contraception takes away a woman’s God given gift of fertility and turns her into merely an object for sexual pleasure. Abortion takes away the life of a child given by God. Through abortion a woman is cruelly violated, a life is being torn from her womb, and she must live the rest of her life knowing deep down inside that she took the life of her own child. After Roe vs. Wade, statistics showed that suicide rates in women started to increase dramatically. There was an increase in rape cases and also a dramatic increase in pornography. There is no respect for human life and the dignity of women any more. Women are seen as cattle simply to be used merely for pleasure without worry of pregnancy. This is what radical feminism is fighting for. In an article written by Anne Mercedes Maloney PhD, professor of philosophy at the college of Saint Catherine’s she said:
The path to liberation, according to radical feminism, is to make women as much like men as possible. Thus the move toward contraception, which tells women they cannot be equal to men unless they chemically or surgically alter their bodies to be more like male bodies. The implication is that the female body needs fixing. Women can walk away from sexual encounters as easily as men. Thus, once again, the male model is offered as the paradigm. And when the contraception fails (as all forms do), the social culture offers a woman the "choice" to have her body surgically invaded and her unborn child torn from her womb so that she will not have to lose out in the public, competitive world--the male world. The road to freedom, equality, dignity, says the contraceptive and abortive culture to young women, is to stop acting like a woman, and start acting like a man. Above all else, the culture adds, do not expect the world to respect what is distinctively female about you....The feminist movement is no longer about the rights of women that men had, but it is now about turning women into men. Feminism has become exactly what women were fighting against in the first place. We see not only are women rejecting their true nature and gifts but men do so as well. Men are to protect women, protect God’s fulfillment of His covenant to mankind. Men do not do so any more. Many husbands encourage their wives to take birth control, pumping her full of chemicals so that he can be satisfied without the obligation to children.We also see this with Pornography.A man no longer sees women as a beautiful creation of God’s design, but a creature merely to be used for his own self-gratification. And once he is done, he moves on to the next fantasy as easily flipping a page or typing in a web address. Our beloved Pope John Paul II said of pornography that it does not show too much, but it shows too little. It does not show the true dignity of a woman, merely her body.

So, what do we do? What needs to be done? We need a new feminism, one that embraces and ultimately encourages true femininity. What is true femininity? -Femininity is being a mother, having openness to life, to love. - It is being modest; it is respecting your feminine body. Not only in dress but also in speech and action- it is being receptive to life, open to the love of husband and the love of God.- Men, stand up for women…for the love of God, BE A MAN!!! Do not be a pig.-Women, Feminism-- is being a WOMAN not a MAN!!!This is true empowerment of women. It is being the beautiful loving and unique creature God created to be the paragon of creation. THIS is feminism.