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PeaceNikki

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Gender: Female
Current location: Wisconsin
Member since: Sat Apr 14, 2007, 05:49 PM
Number of posts: 22,763

Journal Archives

why I think fetal homicide laws are bullshit...

The "Protection of Unborn Children Act", fetal homicide, et al are pure BS.

A forced abortion or miscarriage is totally an assault against the woman, not the fetus. It should not center on the fetus at all, which is part of the woman's body. A woman's pregnancy becomes part of HER identity and personhood while she's pregnant. Laws that bypass her and give any status or protection to the fetus regardless of gestation are harmful and discriminatory against women, and devalue women as persons.

Also, I think the issue of 'choice' in this situation is a red herring. If an assaulted woman's pregnancy is unwanted - even if she gets assaulted on the way to the abortion clinic and miscarries, it's just as serious a crime as an assault against a woman with a much-wanted pregnancy.

Fetal homicide laws are a slippery slope and wrong.

Like "Unborn Victims of Crime Acts"

http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=171ab1e2-a77b-4791-a646-0ebc27512b9a

Fetal homicide laws are not the answer

Margaret Somerville ("New life matters, Nov. 6) and others in these pages have called for legal recognition for fetuses when pregnant women are murdered, which has occurred five times in Canada since 2004. The victims and families of such horrific tragedies deserve our deepest sympathy. However, creating a "fetal homicide" law that would allow murder charges to be laid for the death of a fetus would be an unconstitutional infringement on women's rights, and would likely result in harms against pregnant women.

When pregnant women are assaulted or killed, it's a domestic violence issue and it's well known that violence against women increases during pregnancy. What we need are better measures to protect women in general, and pregnant women in particular, from domestic violence. A "fetal homicide" law would completely sidestep the issue of domestic abuse and do nothing to protect pregnant women.

Canadian women have guaranteed rights and equality, while fetuses do not. Legally speaking, it would be extremely difficult to justify compromising women's established rights in favour of the theoretical rights of fetuses. The Supreme Court has ruled (in Dobson vs. Dobson, 1999) that a womanandher fetusareconsidered "physically one" person under the law. Separating a woman from her fetus under the law creates a harmful, adversarial relationship between a woman and her fetus. For example, if pregnant women are threatened with arrest for abusing drugs, they are less likely to seek pre-natal care.

...

In the U.S., pregnant women have been arrested even under fetal protection laws that exempt the pregnant woman herself from prosecution. That's because a law that recognizes fetal rights creates a confusing legal contradiction. If a fetus has the right not to be "murdered" in the womb by a third party, why doesn't it have the right not to be "murdered" by its own mother? In practice, these contradictory laws create a dangerous slippery slope towards criminalizing pregnant women for their behaviours while pregnant.



In Canada, the judicial system routinely takes aggravating circumstances into account. In the case of an assault or murder of a pregnant woman, even though a third party cannot be charged separately with harm to the fetus, prosecutors may recommend more serious charges, judges may impose harsher penalties and parole boards may deny parole to convicted perpetrators.

Exactly. Opposing bigotry is not bigotry.

“Tolerating intolerance is not, in fact, tolerance. It is merely the passive-aggressive enabling of intolerance.”

When a religious relative passes away - revisiting the church in which I was raised.

My uncle passed away last weekend. His kids are close to the ages of me and my siblings and we spent a lot of time with his family growing up but have drifted away over our adult years. We were all raised in the WELS (Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran church) and attended WELS grade schools. My immediate family 'got out' when I was a teenager and we have all settled in a very happy place of being atheists/agnostics with very bad memories of the church and feelings of resent against organized religion as a whole. And we are all flaming liberals.

My uncle came from a family with money and had experienced a great deal of rather massive medical issues over the past 15 years or so. I won't go into the specifics, but he tapped into social safety nets and had the means to ensure he had top-quality health care during this time. For which I am glad. So, when I read his obituary that asked that donations be made to the church, I was really bothered. He had a large network of family and friends and the fact that, given his experiences, he/they chose not to ask to help ensure that others in need receive health care services makes me sad. But it speaks to the vibe of the WELS church in general. They are incredibly selfish and keep all charity within their own small little world. My siblings and I chose to send flowers.

I knew that his passing would mean revisiting this chapter of my past. His funeral was, as expected, at the church. Also as expected, it brought back a lot of bad feelings and solidified my position. I walked into the church to attend the visitation and was on the fence about whether I would stay for the service. There was a receiving line that extended to the entrance. My eyes wandered onto the bulletin board full of announcements and chick tracts type materials. One jumped out at me. It was titled "Liberalism: Its Cause and Cure : The Poisoning of American Christianity and the Antidote".

Sigh.

Yeah, it was advertising a book written by a Lutheran pastor. It discusses the evil poisoning of "liberalism, evolution, the charismatic heresy and feminism" on American society. I didn't get a chance to discover what he thinks is "the cure".

I offered hugs and condolences to my family and did not stay for the service. I don't want to be part of that world any more. They think we are the enemy, poison that needs an antidote.

sigh.

Thanks for listening.

Abortion: Not easy, not sorry

Nearly one in three American women will have an abortion by age 45. Why are we so afraid to talk about it—or to acknowledge that our lives would have been so much less than we hoped for without it? Why are we pressured to feel that we should regret our choice, and that there's something wrong with us if we don't?

...

For a small segment of women—and the number is small, by any reasonably scientific account—abortion is indeed a tragedy, a trauma with long-lasting reverberations. But I want to tell a different story, the more common yet strangely hidden one, which is that I don't feel guilty and tortured about my abortion. Or rather, my abortions. There, I said it.

"Abortion. We need to talk about it," Pollitt beseeches in Pro. "We need to talk about it differently. Not as something we all agree is a bad thing about which we shake our heads sadly and then debate its precise degree of badness, preening ourselves on our judiciousness and moral seriousness as we argue about this or that restriction on this or that kind of woman. We need to talk about ending a pregnancy as a common, even normal, event in the reproductive lives of women."

...

How normal? Nearly one in three American women will have terminated a pregnancy by age 45, and six in 10 abortions are performed on women who are already mothers. They're not—we're not—"other." Those numbers are from Pro, and when I call it "revelatory," I want to add, oddly so. You can't live in the abortion-is-murder culture for all of your adult life and not have it affect you, even if you're pro-choice. So while I already knew much of the basic information Pollitt imparts, I'd "forgotten" some facts, and lost track of how the facts informed my pro-choice convictions.

...

In an interview with ELLE last month, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said that she thought that the country would "wake up" and realize that the state-by-state restrictions on abortion were untenable and that we "can never go back" to the situation before Roe, when abortions were only "for women who can afford to travel to a neighboring state." Yet it seems to me that we have gone back to that time; right now poor women are in effect being denied abortions because they can't afford them, or can't afford the gas to get to a clinic that is hundreds of miles away—or can't afford all that and to stay overnight in a hotel to comply with a 24-hour waiting period.




Much more at link, a great read: http://www.elle.com/life-love/society-career/the-abortion-choice

I've heard it here on DU: "We don't have to *pretend* abortion is a good thing". I'm not pretending, it *IS* a good thing. Women have to control their fertility for 30-40 years. That is an awfully long time not to make mistakes, to not have any failure in process or judgement. Abortion allows us to decide the direction, to allow our education, careers and health to go the way that is best for ourselves. Abortion allows us to decide to become parents when we are ready to be good parents.

Abortion is a moral and positive choice that liberates women, saves lives, and protects families.

The Notorious RBG is correct. We need to wake up. We're losing our rights.

What Ben Affleck missed in the Islamophobia debate

http://ffrf.org/news/blog/item/21513-what-ben-affleck-missed-in-the-islamophobia-debate-with-bill-maher-and-sam-harris

The missing piece of this puzzle is a basic assumption about religion Ben et. al. are mistakenly making. Their analogy of religion to race fails. Religion is not like race. Religion is an idea—a faith-based idea lacking any evidence—or a set of ideas to which one willingly adheres. Race can't be changed; religion can. All you have to do is change your mind. Think for yourself and you can be free from religion.

.....

Ideas dictate behavior, skin color does not. And religion is a set of common ideas to which one willingly subscribes. The caveat to this, and perhaps the hang up for Affleck, was noted by Maher and has been noted by Harris many times in the past. Religion is often an accident of birth and, in the case of Islam, leaving that religion can be lethal. Maher correctly observed that some Muslims are afraid to leave their religion and are even "afraid to speak out because 's the only religion that acts like the mafia, that will fucking kill you if you say the wrong thing, draw the wrong picture or write the wrong book." This spiritual blackmail is disgusting, but it belies the simplicity of treating religion only as a set of ideas. In other words, leaving Islam and saying that you are no longer a Muslim—that you no longer adhere to that set of ideas—is not easy for that religion. However, this caveat is not enough to substantiate Affleck, Kristal, and Steele's claims of bigotry against Maher and Harris.

Affleck himself admitted that we must criticize bad ideas, "of course we do!" Harris and Maher see Islam, as Harris put it, as "the mother lode of bad ideas" and criticize those ideas. But Affleck sees Harris and Maher as attacking Muslims. Harris and Maher are attacking Islam, the set of ideas which Muslims self-identify as subscribing to. Without doubt, there are internecine conflicts within Islam—arguments about which is the true Islam. But both sides recognized this. Harris laid out concentric circles of people who consider themselves Muslims with the ISIS–like extremists at the middle. And Kristal and Steele noted people and friends they know who are in Harris's outer circles. But again, Kristal and Steele's anecdotal evidence does not invalidate Maher and Harris's criticism of ideas: such as the idea that apostasy should be a capital crime. An idea that more than 3/4 of Egyptian Muslims agree with (that statistic actually embodies the differences among Muslims and the anecdotes raised).

Of course Islamophobia exists. A self-appointed vigilante killing a Sikh after mistaking him for a Muslim—he wanted to go out and "shoot some towelheads"—is an example of that fear running wild after 9/11. But criticizing the religion itself, pointing out its barbaric tenets, and explaining the penalties for apostasy are not examples of Islamophobia. What Maher and Harris were saying was not Islamophobic, they were simply speaking critical truths about a set of cruel, misogynistic ideas.


- See more at: http://ffrf.org/news/blog/item/21513-what-ben-affleck-missed-in-the-islamophobia-debate-with-bill-maher-and-sam-harris#sthash.53QeJT85.KylQ0Dvb.dpuf

I agree with Andrew.

Are welfare, food stamps, open heart surgery and root canals not "good things" because they aren't

the ideal outcome?

These and abortion ARE all "good things".

Excellent rant on the ridiculousness of "Salutegate"

https://www.facebook.com/Stonekettle/posts/731530420215697

America has become the land of the perpetually offended. We are the forever outraged, we Americans. It's a bullshit first world problem that afflicts those who face no real difficulty in their day to day lives. No difficulty? What's that you say? Yeah, listen, when you have to lug the day's water four miles from the nearest river on top of your head, get back to me.

This outrage, it's a disease common to those who have enough to eat and a warm place to sleep and endless access to cheap goods and more TV channels than they could view even if they did nothing else. Yesterday, I stood in line behind an angry disaffected hipster at the coffee shop who spent ten minutes ordering a pumpkin spice chai tea latte with various ingredients, a drink that totalled - and I shit you not - $14.98. He held the line up for twenty minutes with his bullshit. Fifteen dollars for a cup of tea. Fifteen dollars for a cup of tea, folks. Twenty minutes of screwing around, and the pretentious little prick STILL wasn't happy. And we all had to listen to him complain to the barista about his goddamned tea. I wanted to snatch him up by his nasty little goatee and smash his fucking head on the counter.

That's what America has become, right there, a bunch of privileged snots mad because our chai tea latte isn't hot enough.
We're outraged all of the time because we've got nothing better to do than be outraged all the damned time.
Listen to me, when the worst thing that happened to you today is that the president waved at a Marine with a cup of coffee in his hand, when THAT's what you've got to be offended by, then you really don't have any actual problems. You're just being an asshole.

It's a symptom of the larger disease.

When the only thing you've got to be upset about is that two gay people want to get married, if that's what offends you, you're just being an asshole.
When the only thing you've got to be pissed off about is that other people worship a different god from yours, or go to a different church, or don't believe in gods at all, then you're just being an asshole.
When you're outraged at the idea that some woman somewhere is getting an abortion, but meanwhile the thought of millions of children starving to death, or dying of preventable and treatable diseases, of suffering from poverty and neglect, or dying under the fall of our bombs doesn't bother you, you're just being an asshole.
When the only thing you've got to be outraged by is that you feel you're being persecuted for your religious beliefs, or your race, or your gender, or your sexual orientation even though you're a member of the overwhelming majority and you provably benefit from that fact every single day, then you're just being an asshole.
When the worst thing in your day is that we're not at war enough, that we aren't bombing or invading or killing enough, if that's your beef, then you are an asshole.
Other countries? Other places in the world? Their leaders are chopping off heads. Literally chopping off heads. Chopping off hands. Murdering. Raping. They're gunning people down in the streets. They're invading their neighbors. People are starving to death and they've got no choice but to drink out of the same river they shit in.
America? We're outraged that the president waved at a Marine with a cup of coffee in his hand.
THAT's what WE've got to be upset about.
_________________
Addendum:
Folks, let me clue you in on something: BY CONSTITUTIONAL DEFINITION, THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA IS A CIVILIAN.
He shouldn't be saluting at all.
Reagan started this idiotic bullshit, no president before him raised a salute, not even Eisenhower.
The president is a civilian. There is no law, statute, regulation, or US Code that requires him to salute. Period. Nor should he. And in point of fact, the people who set up this country SPECIFICALLY didn't want the president to be a member of the military - which is why we put civilians in charge of it.
The president shouldn't be saluting in the first place. Period. A nod, a verbal acknowledgement to the military folks guarding him is sufficient.
Listen to me carefully: We don't want the president, this one or any other, acting like they are a general. This is the United States of America, and it's long past time for you to remember that.
______________________
Addendum 2:
Folks, something I'd point out to you, the President is left handed, as am I.
The president was descending the steep boarding ladder of Marine 1, very likely he was holding on to the rail with his dominant hand, as would I, i.e. the left one. Out of habit, likely he was holding his coffee in his right, as would I. Both without thinking about it - because, and I'm guessing here, the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES just might have other things on his mind than which hand to hold his coffee cup in.
This exact thing happened to me, as a military officer, more than once. Holding my coffee cup, moving through the ship, step out on the deck, and get saluted and have to switch hands or nod or just plain fuck it up and salute with my cup. Because, you know, we're all human. Some of us are left handed humans operating in a right handed world.

Again, if this is what you have to be outraged by, you're an asshole and I don't care which hand you're using.

Why Reverse Racism Isn't Real

This came across my FB feed this AM and I couldn't help but put it in the context of DU.

I spend a lot of time on the internet. I write in various places on the internet, I interact in lively and active commenting communities at different websites, and I partake in a multitude of online forums that have an ongoing and pretty continuous stream of communication between the contributors. Ya know what I’ve noticed? Any time a PoC starts to talk about their experiences with racism, a white person chimes in to derail the conversation and talk about their own experiences with ‘reverse racism.’ And yes, I’m going to say ‘any time’ and not ‘sometimes’ because I have never once been in an internet dialogue amongst commenters and observed a PoC bring up their experience with real, actual, systemic or overt racism and not encountered a white person trying to make it all about their experiences with perceived racism. Not once. It happens every time. Ya know what else? That shit is tired, played out, and incorrect. So let’s talk about why reverse racism isn’t real and why white people need to let that one go.

Racism exists when prejudice+power combine to form social constructs, legislation and widespread media bias that contribute to the oppression of the rights and liberties of a group of people. Racism is systemic, institutional, and far reaching. It is the prevalence of racism within social structures and institutional norms, along with implicit and explicit enforcement by members of a group, that allows racism to run rampant and unchecked. America is a country seeped in white privilege, and our social structure is built on colonization and forced slave labor that then turned into further systemic and ongoing oppression of PoC. We have a culture that presents whiteness as the norm and all else as ‘other’ or different. White is presented as the beauty ideal, the main face in the media (unless we’re talking about criminals, then PoC get unfairly misrepresented), the standard, the regular. It’s a structural problem that affects the perceptions of jurors in criminal cases, admissions to colleges, funding for public schools, welfare and food stamp programs, the redrawing of district lines that affect where we vote, who we see represented on T.V. and how, what schools people have access to, what neighborhoods people live in, an individual’s shopping experience, access to goods and services; it’s extensive and a part of the fabric that let’s whiteness remain dominant in American culture.

When I’m online talking to people and a PoC is sharing their experience with racism, I’m listening and I am learning. This is an experience I will probably never have in my lifetime, simply because of the skin I was born into. I need to know what I can do to be a better ally and to make the world a more equal place one interaction at a time. So I observe, I listen, I join the conversation, and I try to understand. Inevitably, here comes a white person either claiming that they have a similar experience because they grew up in an all black neighborhood and got chased on the way home from school a few times, or because their black friend tried to touch their straight hair one time without permission and OMG THAT IS SO RACIST and it is the exact same thing, or some other such bullshittery, and they expect that ignorance to be suffered in silence and with respect. If you are that kid who got chased after school, that’s horrible, and I feel bad for you. And if you are that person who had another person try to touch you without your permission, that was wrong of them, and I’m sorry that happened to you. But dudes, that shit is not racism.

The situations in which you, fellow white person, were involved were unfortunate and inappropriate, this is true. But to claim that these experiences were ‘reverse racism’ both diminishes and minimalizes the real and actual experiences of PoC who really do encounter racism. There is no system of oppression in America that actively works to oppress and subjugate white people. Sorry to break it to you, but your individual suffering is just that, individual. The individuals acting against you do not have the institutionalized power to actively oppress you in every facet of your life, nor would their racism be upheld and supported by government, media, and legislation if they did. Because you’re white.


More a link: http://feminspire.com/why-reverse-racism-isnt-real/

I wonder what her DU name is. I also think the same can and should be said about sexism.

Seriously, move on, Hassin. Move. On. Change the tone. You're a host. Be an example.

Please stop with the 'bashing' of alerters. You don't 'get paid' by the snarky shitty comment that you make. Watching you, rhett and Autumn continue it while others are actively trying to make it better is really sad.

Grow the fuck up.
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