Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Standards, part 2

I've spoken before about media bias and media companies being propaganda machines.  There is some recent evidence of that in this subject, but that's not my main message.

You may have heard of the Kermit Gosnell trial.  Or you may not.  Kermit Gosnell (allegedly) has committed some atrocities as his work as an abortion provider.  Legal atrocities, this isn't me taking a moral stand against abortion.  Gosnell would instruct women to come in very late in their pregnancy and perform the "abortion" in a manner that often equated to a live birth, then kill the baby and sometimes cut off parts for keepsakes.

Again, this isn't me speaking out against abortion or reproductive rights, if you read about this man's actions he's obviously operating outside of legal abortion and purposefully so.  You may have not heard about it because most news companies have decided to not carry the story.  The reasoning is that by making the public aware of this man it could hurt abortion rights.  People may read the story and think that more regulation in that industry is a good idea.  They may want to restrict the right of abortion in some way.

The state where Gosnell operated already has some of the stricter abortion standards in the nation.  Abortion advocates would suggest that more restrictions, more laws, wouldn't have prevented this.  I am prone to agree.  But then I also agree that more laws wouldn't have prevented the school shooting at Newtown.  Newtown already possessed some of the more restrictive gun laws in the nation, and yet a person broke many laws to do something terrible.

As mentioned, the point of this post isn't the media blacklisting this story.  It's why.  The fear is that people will react emotionally to the story and allow some anti-abortion bill introduced by a backwoods Republican to gain traction and public support.  I think it's a rational fear, mostly because that's the standard operating procedure of politics today, to ride tragedy to push legislation.  We saw it with the attacks on 9-11 with the passing of the Patriot Act, probably the worst piece of legislation for civil rights we've seen in my lifetime.  We had Obama's head of staff blatantly say "You never want a serious crisis to go to waste".  We saw banks given billions of dollars because they were "too big to fail".  It's the worst way to solve a problem, with emotions.

Instead we should make decisions rationally, based on facts and trends.  Abortion is a relatively safe medical procedure in the United States.  As well, murder rates have been dropping for two decades.  An abortion provider knowingly delivering babies to kill them under the guise of abortion is very rare, an aberration.  But then again, so is a mad man opening fire on an innocent crowd.

This is my main point.  If you think we shouldn't increase restrictions on abortion because of the actions of Gosnell, but you do think we should increase restrictions on gun rights because of the murderer in Newtown, you are either a hypocrite or you don't understand logical thought.  Using an example of a law breaker to push more laws that wouldn't have stopped something bad isn't effective, no matter what the subject at hand is.  All it does is restrict rights without offering any benefit.

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