Wednesday, February 09, 2005

The Souls of Embryos

Via Alas, it appears that 60% to 80% of all naturally conceived embryos fail to implant in the uterus and end up in womens' monthly menstrual flow. If, as pro-life abortion opponents contend, embryos are human and have souls from the moment of conception, this would mean that the deaths from abortion pale in comparison to the number of humans who die naturally during menstruation. Logically, pro-life advocates should be freaking out over this loss of life, but they aren't.

Also, if embryos are automatically ensouled, then fertility clinics commit multiple murders for every couple they help, because more eggs are fertilized -- and embryos created -- than are implanted. The extras are simply thrown out. They could be used for stem cell research, but the Federal government has banned funding for fetal stem cell research in order to "save lives." But these embryos are created and destroyed regardless of whether they are used for stem cell research, and thus no lives are saved by Bush's stem cell research funding ban.

If you go down and read the comments on this article on Alas, it becomes quickly clear that pro-life advocates have no consistent position on whether an embryo is truly a human life. For instance, one pro-life advocate claims that there is not the same moral urgency in "natural" deaths of embryos and abortion, since abortion is an intentional sin and "natural" loss of embryos isn't. Which is like saying that it is better to spend millions to stop a single murder rather than using the money to provide food for millions who are starving due to drought (a natural condition). This is nothing more than a flimsy rationalization.

By the same token, when asked if they would save ten embryos in a petri dish or a three-year-old from a fire, the pro-life advocates choose the three-year-old, trying to justify it with language about how the three-year-old can feel pain and such. But this, too, is a rationalization, a way of explaining what pro-life advocates don't want to admit:

They don't think embryos are fully human and equivalent to a person either.

They see the difference. But they choose to ignore it in the case of abortion because it would conflict with their agenda, the agenda of controlling the sexuality of women. If pro-life advocates really were concerned with lowering the abortion rate, or "saving lives" as they put it, they would be in favor of birth-control and in favor of sex education, both of which are proven to be effective at lowering abortion rates. But, instead, the pro-life movement pushes "abstinence-only" education, which has been shown to do nothing to stem sexuality in young people, and increases unwanted pregnancies.

If pro-life advocates really believe embryos have souls, they would have to see the "natural" loss of so many embryos as the equivalent of Mount Vesuvius burying Pompeii every single day. But they don't, because if they tried to save all those embryos they wouldn't just be punishing the slutty women who have casual sex, but also married women with families. Since the whole point is to control the sexuality of slutty women in order to force them to become good, family-oriented breeders, they don't actually care about whether all these "naturally" lost embryos have souls or not.


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