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DT: come reap
Posted on 2006.14.01 at 19:29
How I feel about it all: sadsad and angry
A while ago, patchfire linked me to this post on the Mothering Dot Commune forums.

The outcome of the situation is here on post #159. How sad and pointless this decision was.


This incident is just--oh, I don't know. Not right, on so very many levels, one important one being that the accuracy of this Gender Mentor Monitor is very much in question, and in a lot of ways sounds like so much snake oil.


It's really got me thinking about the politics and bioethics of sex-selection abortions, partly because the mother chose to abort because he was a boy, rather than a girl, which is more common and is often perceived as a feminist issue.


Caveat: This post is NOT a statement about Roe v. Wade, or circumcision as a practice at all. It's about a very specific incident, and the ethics thereof. After all, just because someone has a legal right to do a thing doesn't make it ethical to do it.

patchfire has also posted about this. You can read it here.

Comments:


robinhoo at 2006-01-15 01:04 (UTC) ()
Why is it perceived as a feminist issue when a baby is aborted because he's a boy instead of a girl? I totally understand why it would be in the opposite case, but I think I'm missing something.

That's a horrible tragedy, that they decided to abort because they couldn't agree on the issue of circumcision. My God, how irrational it seems to me that someone would be more willing to cut off the potential for an entire life than a piece of flesh. Granted, I'm not militantly opposed to circumcision. But it seems to me that there's a massive, massive difference between a foreskin and a life.

BTW, thank you for the links to those pages with articles on gender disappointment. I'm a few years from having a baby yet, but it's an issue I've been thinking long and hard about for many, many years. I'm still at the point emotionally (financial and practical circumstances totally notwithstanding, of course) where I don't want to even try having a child, because I know how horribly, terribly disappointed I would be if the baby turned out to be a girl. I'm sure that sounds terrible, but it's true. I'm hoping one day I'll get to a point where I could be happy if I had a daughter, but I think I'm still a long way from that -- my overwhelming hope is for a boy. But it's awfully nice to know I'm not the only person who struggles with this issue; I honestly thought I might be, until I read those articles.
try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2006-01-15 01:26 (UTC) ()
The point I was making was just that--sex-selection abortion because the zygote/embryo/fetus is female is brought up more because it's often considered a feminist issue if the ZEF's female (and because it happens more often with girls). The fact that this is about a male is unusual, because it doesn't often happen.

But it seems to me that there's a massive, massive difference between a foreskin and a life.

Absolutely.


Also, I have daughters and sons...both are amazing to have and behold. *g*
(Anonymous) at 2006-01-15 14:03 (UTC) ()
That's a horrible tragedy, that they decided to abort because they couldn't agree on the issue of circumcision.

I can't see this incident as having anything really to do with gender issues. I don't think the couple give a flip what the gender of the child is, except that one gender might upset their (I'm guessing here) orderly lives. I have an image in my head that these people are exactly like that yuppie-anal-control-freak-perfectionist couple in "Best in Show". Ie, they can't see beyond themselves on anything, nor would they ever want to.

I wonder if they have a girl, and then get to the point they can't resolve their conflict over, let's say, what pre-school she goes to ... are they going to put her up for adoption?
The Foo Queen
erebor at 2006-01-15 14:04 (UTC) ()
The above is mine ... didn't know I wasn't signed in!

Also, maybe not apparent I'm agreeing with you on the nature of the tragedy.
try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2006-01-15 14:55 (UTC) ()
I'm wondering if they already might have had a girl, since those stupid tests aren't accurate at ALL. They not only are stupid and selfish; they were being stupid based on dodgy information, as well.

And you're right. Spoilt, control freak don't-want-to-deal-with-it people, these idiots are.
Latter-day Jezebel
nmalfoy at 2006-01-15 01:47 (UTC) ()
Well, the fact that neither parent would go into counseling to try to resolve the issue re. circumcision... doesn't sound like they have the child's best interests at heart anyway. So somehow the outcome doesn't surprise me.

and hey... look at India and China. Female infanticide is rampant over there.
try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2006-01-15 02:43 (UTC) ()
India and China do sex-selection abortions and infanticide, and they're all girls. :(
Jess
aphephobia at 2006-01-15 02:13 (UTC) ()
I just think it's surreal, personally... I don't see an embryo as the same thing as a human being. I don't really see it as being much different from any other sex-selection stuff- but I think the fact that the circ issue was allowed to turn into that sort of an outcome is just really weird. It made me think a lot about how people percieve gender and little girls and little boys. I've personally never really understood the desire for one sex over the other with regards to kids, myself. (Unless there is an illness like haemophilia or something sex-specific in the family. *shrugs*)

I can see prolifers using this as an argument, though (stupid as it is, and as much as it's not about abortion, like you said, but about a specific situation) and I think that's a Very. Bad. Thing.
try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2006-01-15 14:06 (UTC) ()
Some decisions that are legal aren't ethical. I've always thought that the decision to become pregnant, as well as the decision to have an abortion, is a life-changing, very serious one. This couple is making a mockery of both, as far as I can see.
Jess
aphephobia at 2006-01-15 22:38 (UTC) ()

I'm scared because it has broader implications...

I agree on that- they're doing serious shit and they have a very throwaway attitude to it from what I've seen. It, funnily enough- reminds me of a news report I saw the other night about C-sections and the increase in people wanting them for convenience rather than medical neccessity, and not thinking about the seriousness of what they're doing if they don't actually need one. (And this isn't a stab at people who have- by no means. Honest. I realise people DO need such surgery enough of the time. The report- and me- aren't talking about that.)

While it's not my place to judge, I feel that terminating an "imperfect" pregnancy is just... well, it doesn't gel with my personal ethics. (That said, I realise for a lot of people, it's not a decision that's made lightly- like this.) One day it might be a boy they don't want, next minute it might be a fetus that might turn into someone who's gay... or who has Asperger syndrome... what next?

The idea of abortion as a way to work eugenics sickens me.

And... I can't help but think- if people want a pregnancy on their terms- ie, it has to be a boy, or be super-intelligent, or what-have-you... doesn't that make parental love conditional? And what happens when things don't turn out as predicted?

try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2006-01-17 20:50 (UTC) ()

Re: I'm scared because it has broader implications...

ne day it might be a boy they don't want, next minute it might be a fetus that might turn into someone who's gay

When the gene for homosexuality is found (and I think it might be), there will be abortions like this, I know there will. How sad.

Eugenics is evil, I don't care what's bloody politically correct. Personally, I refused all the testing for fetal abnormalities out of preference and protest. Who's to say who's better than anyone else? :/
Kupukello
kupukello at 2006-01-15 05:26 (UTC) ()
"Whaaat?" was my first reaction, but then, the possibility of trolling is not that far away either.

Would you care to explain to me why the "father" was so much FOR circumcision? I understand (sort of) if it's a religious issue, but what other reasons for that are there? Kid getting teased in gym changing room? Hygiene? Tradition?

It's sort of funny; quite many people have serious trouble having any kids at all, and then they want to choose their gender, IQ, eye colour, height and shape of nose too :D It would be quite ironic if that couple couldn't get any babies at all after that ;) I still think it's a troll.

(Am very much pro-choice, and against circumcision, although my pro-choice ideology doesn't stretch quite that far)

(Hee, I've seen all of two circumcised peckers in my life, and my, are they ODD :)))
try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2006-01-15 14:07 (UTC) ()
(Hee, I've seen all of two circumcised peckers in my life, and my, are they ODD :)))

Here it's the norm, although things are changing, fortunately.
(Anonymous) at 2006-01-15 10:49 (UTC) ()

Appalling

*chants "Thou shalt not judge, thou shalt not judge, thou shalt not judge..."*

How insidiously horrifying. This may be one of the most selfish acts that I have ever heard of. In my eyes, the problem here is that when one conceives, it stops being about you and starts being about the child. For nine months (and beyond) you are that child's voice. I am not raging pro-life, nor am I militantly pro-choice. There are situations where both are appropriate. But to go into a conception knowing that there is a 50/50 chance that you'll be aborting based on something so fundamentally insignificant is...well, so far beyond wrong as to not have a word to describe it. Obviously I don't know these two personally, but that they would make such a decision indicates they are far too wrapped up in themselves to see that bringing a child into the world isn't just about them.
peacey at 2006-01-15 10:51 (UTC) ()

Re: Appalling

And yikes, forgot to log in. The above was mine. :)
try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2006-01-15 13:56 (UTC) ()

Re: Appalling

I am not raging pro-life, nor am I militantly pro-choice. There are situations where both are appropriate. But to go into a conception knowing that there is a 50/50 chance that you'll be aborting based on something so fundamentally insignificant is...well, so far beyond wrong as to not have a word to describe it.

Darling, you have pretty much summed up exactly how I feel about it. *loves* I don't think circumcision is insignificant (I'm strongly opposed to it, actually). But ending a pregnancy that was started on purpose based on the sex and not being able to make a decision about circ is beyond appalling. It's the REAL meaning of abomination, IMO. As robinhoo said, a foreskin is not worth a life. The whole thing is so bloody offhand of this couple. I also don't think it's a troll because the OP has been a member of the MDC forums for a long time.
alexisyael at 2006-01-15 14:57 (UTC) ()
Personally, I don't think that was a real post... the update comes too quickly (4 days earlier her sister hadn't had the 6 week or the 10 week "gender" tests.)

I think that either a) there was a lot more going on that the poster wasn't aware of (her sister didn't want to have a baby, actually, and was using this as a smokescreen) or b) it was made up in order to get sympathy. I do realize the poster is a long term member, but... this is just too bizarre a situation for me to be able to believe.
try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2006-01-16 22:47 (UTC) ()
It's very bizarre. I hope it's something besides what it looks like on the surface.
alexisyael at 2006-01-16 23:01 (UTC) ()
me, too.
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