Wednesday, July 22, 2015

The Sociopathic Argument Against Abortion

When I was in college and first encountered Judith Jarvis Thomson’s violinist argument advocating for abortion I was greatly troubled. It was so sophisticated, and I so witless, that for even a long time after it remained beyond my ability to refute. “so what?” she said, “If the baby is a person? The victim here is the woman who has to put up with a pregnancy.” To which my inept reply was, “I’ll, uh, get back to you.”

Many years later I stumbled upon an article by Bnonn that clarified for me exactly what was wrong in a buzzfeed-esque title,4 reasons the consent argument for abortion is sociopathic.The main take away is this:
In all the analogies pro-abortionists give, the perpetrator is acting maliciously (sometimes by proxy, as in the violinist argument) toward a woman who did nothing to merit his actions against her... Yet in the vast majority of pregnancies, the “perp” is in fact acting helplessly toward a woman precisely because she caused him to do so. And moreover, she is not simply “a woman” and he is not simply “a perp”—rather, she is his mother and he is her child.
“Ah” says I in a vaguely pirate growl, “that be it entirely. Why didn’t I see it before?”
In an instant it became clear to me that Thomas’ callous stiff arm was the very weapon to be used against her. When she says,
A woman may be utterly devastated by the thought of a child, a bit of herself, put out for adoption and never seen or heard of again. She may therefore want not merely that the child be detached from her, but more, that it die.” the proper response is, “You’re a sociopath, and have no place in our society.” When someone comes to you with the serious argument that they should have the right to dismember their child because they may get depressed at the thought of someone else raising it, the comeback is, “Get lost, psychopath.”

And the more I think about it, the more I’m convinced that not only does the sociopathic argument prove to be outstanding against abortion advocates, but it also explains nearly everything surrounding abortion itself, from the suffering of women who undergo it to the limited number of doctors who perform it. Which is why we'll first look at using the observation as an argument, then as a behavioral tool.
"For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds"

Let’s start by showing how well the argument works in general, and here I can do no better than to repackage what Bnonn argues when he urges his reader to imagine they are alone on an Antarctic research base when a baby shows up at their door. “Are you morally obligated to take care of this baby, or is it morally permissible to close the door and let it freeze?”
The answer is obvious: only a sociopath would let the baby die.
Now what if, instead of a random stranger, the baby shows up on the doorstep of his own mother? Is it reasonable for her to take a surgical knife and hack him to pieces? Should we be sympathetic to her if she were to use forceps to crush him to death? No. What are you anyway, psychotic?    

The argument is not just powerful however, it’s simple. All the user needs to do is point out that the “fetus” in the womb of a pregnant woman is her offspring. You don’t really need to mention the fact that “fetus” will automatically inherit her love of certain foods, personality traits, behaviors, and coloring, and will, if given enough time, express those traits and enjoy watching indie films with her on Chinese food night. There’s no need to muck around with definitions, DNA, or ask where life really begins, it’s enough to point out the thing in there is her offspring and that makes her a mother. And if it’s wrong to let some stranger die when you can easily prevent it, how much more sociopathic is it to knowingly murder your own son or daughter? In point of fact you can’t get more sociopathic than that.

It also works well as a counter argument, and to prove it I’ll just jump to the strongest, most visceral argument the pro-abortionist has. The dreaded, “but what about rape?” rejoinder. “What about the scared 14 year old girl who was raped by her brother?” The pro-sociopath confidently asserts. “Surely abortion is permissible in this case?”
The sonic screwdriver of abortion arguments delivers the perfect answer: “Do you really think that the wisest course of action is to ask what a sociopath would do, and then do likewise? Do you think the world needs more people who are driven only by bloodthirsty psychotic urges? Are you honestly trying to argue that the best way for the mother to heal from the rape is for her to dismember her child? What are you, some kind of sociopath?

From what I’ve seen the vast majority of people who support abortion are not really reasoning out the implications of it, but are instead trying to defend freedom to do as they please, to be unconstrained by the obligations and bonds of being a normal human in society. That’s why they use language like pro-choice, because it advances the idea of freedom. To this the response is, “Is the freest person in the world the teenager who kills his parents without remorse for the inheritance money, since he’s loosed all the natural bonds of obligations upon him? Are you prepared to defend the proposition that happiness is found in having no conscience, and then doing as you please? That normal adults should behave in real life like junior high boys playing Grand Theft Auto?”
The sociopath argument wakes them up by dashing cold water on their face, and arresting their self-aggrandizement. It makes it evident that the goal they’re pushing towards—freedom from relational imposition—is itself sociopathic. All you need to do is point that out.

"Having their conscience seared with a hot iron"

In addition to providing a snappy the argument, there's a secondary, related feature of the sociopathic observation that's worth mentioning: it functions as a great explanatory model. That abortion is a fundamentally psychotic act does very well to explain the behavior of those involved.
Consider for a moment why the people who work in the industry become inhumane, (or the inhumane are attracted to it). Having a normal person engage in sociopathic behavior has one of two possible outcomes: either they become hardened and make peace with the psychotic behavior and come to accept it as normal, or they flee for their life. That’s why the Planned Parenthood executive was able to casually discuss selling baby organs over wine and salad. In her case the proverb is literally true when it says, “She eats and wipes her mouth and says, 'I've done nothing wrong.'” She’s a sociopath. Kermit Gosnell is a sociopath. Mary Gatter, senior medical director for Planned Parenthood is a sociopath. They are untroubled by aiding a mother in killer her child, or selling children’s body parts because their consciences have been seared thanks to so much bad behavior. They are past feeling now. The people who knowingly and openly lie on their behalf so that can get money from abortions, people like the legacy print media, are sociopaths.
If it came out that they were cooking the baby's flesh and feeding it to farm animals to "prevent it from going to waste" should we be surprised? No. Sociopaths.

This also explains why many women who abort their babies are traumatized by it and are regretful or miserable afterwards. They’re suffering because they’re normal people who just behaved like a blood-thirsty sociopath, and can’t very well reconcile the two courses of life. Of course it’s traumatic and takes time to get over. Of course that kind of thing can give you nightmares.

It's at this point that I turn the model over to you for some final considerations. Firstly, is it reasonable to extrapolate that institutions engaging in sociopathic behavior will have a negative impact on society? Is it reasonable to conclude that the impact of 55 million women murdering their children is larger than the loss of life to the children, but also extends to the deadening of our empathy generally? What happens if Minority Report is right when it says, “There's nothing more destructive to the metaphysical fabric that binds us than the untimely murder of one human being by another.” particularly a baby by its mother? What do you think happens to a community where more babies are aborted than born alive? When a people collectively decide it’s better to kill their children rather than see them born into this world, as if we were living in The Road by Cormac McCarthy? 
Don’t hear me overselling it or going into hysterics, and keep in mind sociopaths typically have good taste in music and a flair for culture. Acting like a psychopath isn’t identical to murdering everyone at the first opportunity. But please for a moment use the model to predict what the legalization of a murderous sociopathic urge would do to a society, and see if it doesn't explain at least a little of the moral unraveling of the last 50 years.
"The Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth."
So there it is. The sociopathic argument may very well be the most powerful argument out there, for hitting at the ego, rather than the head (which is where the problem is), and as a related bonus the model proves an excellent framework for understanding the behavior of abortionists and the effect on the women who receive them.
Sociopathic. It’s simple to use and cuts right to the heart of the matter. There you go, it's all yours now. Use it wisely.

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