Every sperm is sacred: open thread

Well, duh.

Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee on Monday endorsed a proposed Colorado Human Life Amendment that would define personhood as a fertilized egg.

Of course, Preacher Huck hasn’t stopped to ponder all the practical and logistical nightmares this kind of silliness would engender. For instance:

  • If my wife is pregnant, can I claim Unborn, Jr. as a tax exemption?
  • Does this make the legal drinking age 20 years, 3 months?
  • Can kids get their driver’s licenses 15 years and 3 months after exiting the womb?
  • If a kid if 17 years and 3 months old by traditional reckoning come November, we have to let him vote, right?
  • Can a pregnant woman drive in the HOV lane?
  • Ooh – this has implications for when you can be tried as an adult, doesn’t it?
  • Would pregnant women have to pay for an extra ticket when they go to amusement parks?
  • Could a pregnant woman be arrested for sneaking an underaged person into an NC-17 rated movie?

Your turn.

Thanks to KagroX and Oliver Griswold for a couple of the better ideas above…

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13 thoughts on “Every sperm is sacred: open thread”

  1. This, from Crooks and Liars:
    http://www.crooksandliars.com/2008/02/26/huckabee-endorses-egg-as-person-concept/

    “Well, it’s actually a little stickier than that, Huckabee. After all, would we consider a woman who had a miscarriage (also known medically as a “spontaneous abortion” *gasp*) a murderer? What if she conceives ectopically? Would the doctor who operates on her to remove the pregnancy so that the mother will not die also a murderer? Michael Froomkin points out another issue: citizenship.

    “Aside from the not-so-small point that citizenship is a federal issue and it is not clear from first principles whether the federal rule should or would follow the state rule, there’s obviously something powerful about this logic especially if the Colorado model were ever to be adopted on a national basis.

    “In that case, if a noncitizen female conceives a child in the US, presumably it would be wrong to deport the blastocyte or fetus. And that means we can’t deport the mother either. At least until the kid is born after which we are, as news reports from all over show, perfectly willing to deport mothers of small citizens if the mothers lack proper documentation.”

  2. Here’s a few more unintended consequences that are a little less tongue in cheek, I’m afraid:

    Given that something like 50% of all fertilized eggs naturally fail to implant in the uterus, does that mean we should bring God up on charges of mass murder?
    Do we charge pregnant women who are drinking alcohol with providing alcohol to a minor?
    How about child abuse when a pregnant woman is a drug addict?
    Or attempted murder when a pregnant woman takes prescription drugs that could cause severe birth defects (like a lot of anti-depressants, allergy medicines, and other psychological stabilizers)?
    Since the fetus is a person, that makes all sex with a pregnant woman menage-a-trois.
    It also makes all sex with a pregnant woman both incest and statutory rape.
    A doctor who prescribes an abortifacient could be an accessory to murder, and the pregnant woman to takes said drug becomes a murderer.

    Oh, wait, never mind. That last one is actually an intended consequence of the law….

  3. “After all, would we consider a woman who had a miscarriage (also known medically as a “spontaneous abortion” *gasp*) a murderer?”

    Actually, that would technically be manslaughter. If she smoke or drank or otherwise didn’t take care of her body while pregnant and then had a miscarriage, that would be murder.

    On a related note, I lived in the small island country of Samoa for a few months (a very devoutly Christan country, by the way) and a married couple I was good friends with told me a story about a teenage girl who came to them for help. She was pregnant and didn’t want to keep the baby. The couple was very proud that this girl trusted them enough to confide in them and they told her of a folk remedy. Take very cold showers every day and drink lots of strong bitter tea without milk or sugar. The girl took showers constantly and couldn’t been seen without a cup of tea in her hand for a few weeks and sure enough, she miscarried.

    This wasn’t meant to be medical advice, of course, but it is good to remember how universal this problem is.

  4. Let’s talk logistics. If a soul (for argument’s sake) weighs 21 grams, can it even fit inside an embryo?

    What does God want with a soul in a helpless physical form for months on end? Isn’t that like being in a coma?

    People who believe the soul enters the body at conception are giving God credit for neither mercy — nor efficiency.

    Fundamentalists, if you’re listening, kindly explain.

  5. Tried as an adult, indeed – considering that down here we’re now trying 12-year-olds as adults, the fetal incarceration industry could well be the next big growth market. After all, when Mama robs that convenience store, isn’t that little guy riding shotgun?

    It’s about responsibility, people.

  6. I guess I’m wondering why they don’t go the full distance and personify an egg and a sperm. Oh wait… that would mean that every time a man masturbated or a woman had a period it would be reckless abandonment.

    Possible ramifications:

    A pregnant woman caught speeding could also be charged with reckless endangerment of a minor.
    A woman who is not aware that she is pregnant and takes harmful medications could be charged with attempted murder.
    A woman who is not aware that she is pregnant while engaging in a harmful activity of any kind could be charged with neglect.
    A woman could qualify for extra welfare and food stamps.
    It also could mean that a person is of legal age to move out of their parents home and work a full time job at 17 years and 3 months after birth.
    They could also be married at 17 years and 3 months after birth.
    And vote.
    And be drafted.

  7. > If my wife is pregnant, can I claim Unborn, Jr. as a tax exemption?
    Some places you can already.

    > Does this make the legal drinking age 20 years, 3 months?
    This is an age limit, and I think all age limits are immoral discrimination.
    http;//www.YouthRights.org/

    > Can kids get their driver’s licenses 15 years and 3 months after exiting the womb?
    Ditto.

    > If a kid if 17 years and 3 months old by traditional reckoning come November, we have to let him vote, right?
    Ditto

    > Can a pregnant woman drive in the HOV lane?
    Yes, because the unborn child does not occupy another seat.

    > Ooh – this has implications for when you can be tried as an adult, doesn’t it?
    Another age limit

    > Would pregnant women have to pay for an extra ticket when they go to amusement parks?
    No. See the HOV lane response. Though she should be careful not to go on the more intense rides; most amusement parks won’t let you on certain rides if you’re pregnant.

    > Could a pregnant woman be arrested for sneaking an underaged person into an NC-17 rated movie?
    First of all, this is an age limit. Secondly, no. The unborn child can’t see the movie or understand any of the dialogue.

  8. How can some people be so stupid! This amendment would be made specific to apply to abortion issues. It would not receed age requirements. Im sure that the politicians that propose this amendment would concider stupid legal implications like the ones above, and guard against them.

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