I don’t like this bill…
President Bush, eager to hand another victory to the social conservatives who make up his most loyal base of political support, decided on an elaborate ceremony to sign into law legislation expanding legal rights of the unborn.
The Unborn Victims of Violence Act makes it a crime to harm a fetus during an assault on a pregnant woman. Bush was signing the bill, which took five years to get through Congress, on Thursday in the Rose Garden.
People on both sides of the fetal rights and abortion issue have said the new law will have far-reaching consequences.
Abortion opponents welcome it as a step toward more sweeping protections for the unborn, while abortion-rights proponents say the measure represents the first recognition in federal law of an embryo or fetus as a person separate from the woman.
Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., Bush’s opponent in this fall’s election voted against the bill.
No, it isn’t because I am in favor of killing ‘unborn babies,’ but because I think this bill is stupid for a number of reasons, chief of which is that the bill is so limited, that this is clearly nothing more than pandering. It only applies to federal crimes, which the story itself refers to as a “terrorist attack or drug-related shooting.” With all due respect to pregnant victims of terrorism, there does not seem to be a really big need for this legislation.
I think you missed the larger picture. The bill isn’t important for what it will do, but for who voted against it.
There was an interesting article on Slate a couple of days ago, which basically stated that pro-choice lawmakers have become so beholden to their lobbies that they cannot even conceive of a fetus as a being. The problem with this is that it is self-evident to practically all Americans that a fetus happens to be a little bit more than just a lump of cells. The gist of the article was that if the Dems. and other pro-choice elements cannot bring themselves to at least acknowledge that a fetus is something more than an inanimate object, then they risk alienating a large swath of the population, who (rightfully) consider such attitudes to be lunacy.
Kerry voted against the bill, which has specific provisions in place to ensure that it in now way affects current legislation regarding abortion. Kerry cannot hide behind the old just-protecting-reproductive-rights canard, since it is clearly false. The bill itself says so. So now he’s not just a flip-flopper, he’s someone so out of touch with mainstream values that he cannot even deign to call a fetus anything more than a “thing”.
I think it’s pretty clever stuff, actually. Political Ju-jitsu, as they say.
Here’s a link to the Slate story I mentioned. I think you’ll find it an interesting read.
Apart from his vote-counting error, there’s a lack of evidence in the piece that his suggestion would have affected the outcome.
Just ask yourself this one question: If a pregnant woman is murdered, how many victims are there, one or two? Your answer will define you.
You must not have any children. If you did, you could not possibly feel this way. I loved my baby the day I found out she was coming. If her mother lost her due to an assault, I don’t think I would have taken, “there was no victim here” well at all.
Please re-think your stance here. Forget the minute legalisms and think it about its meaning from a real world perspective.
Brian- If a pregnant woman is murdered, most states have the death penalty, as does the federal law.
If someone murders a prgnant woman, I presume you want to execute the murderer twice?
This is nothing more than grandstanding, not that much different from idiotic hate crimes legislation.
I understand your concerns but do not accept your analogy. Hate crimes is a thought crime, designed to protect the politically correct, i.e. everyone except white Christian heterosexual males. I am talking about protecting babies here, a big difference. One of the things you are not understanding is that even if the pregnant woman isn’t killed, but her baby is, the law said before that there was no crime because there was no victim. I find that difficult to accept. Take a second to read my whole post on this issue. If you still disagree, then that is fine. I just hope you’ll think about this issue more, and give this more credit than you do now.
Best, Brian G