i think i've figured out, at a certain level, the reason why debating things like abortion and the death penalty is so difficult. it's really not the big of a deal, i'm sure i'm not the first. it was just the first time i'd really looked within myself and at those who argue for/against it. Who tends to be for abortion? Your average civil rights activist, people with more liberal views. Someone who knows about the issues behind why many people get abortions, the conditions in which those kids could be born, the conditions behind why many of those people who get abortions get them. Who is against abortion? Mostly conservatives who believe every thing conceived has a right to exist. It doesn't matter if that being has no way of existing of it's own free will if left to its own devices, it still has the right to exist. The optimist versus the realist. So where does it occur that one gathers these differences in opinion on abortion? I think that the issue of abortion stems from a person's own value of human life. I shall use myself as an example. I'm fine with giving women the right to choose whether they want to keep a child or not. Is the child going to be my responsibility? No. So should I be able to tell her that she has to have it? Not at all. That would be like me telling a woman she had to have kids because that was what she was supposed to do. Alternately, does the woman have the right to decide "well, i don't want the responsibility of having a kid right now..."? I think she should. Albeit, yes there are teenage girls out there who use abortion as a way to justify being able to have sex. But wouldn't it be better to allow them to have an abortion rather than go through the emotional turmoil that is giving up a child to adoption or raising a child before having come of age? If society is to take away a woman's right to decide, then society should be willing to help take care of those children who were unwanted, those kids who otherwise would have been aborted. But society doesn't offer that solution. So why am I willing to say "yes, i'm pro-choice." Why am I for the termination of the process of creating a creature? Because i don't value human life as highly as others. I've also lived the life of a child that was not expected and wasn't much wanted by the father. Young people don't know how to deal with their own problems very well, much less those associated with being a parent. My father still remains in the mental state of a teenage boy because he didn't have time to grow up, to develop mentally and emotionally into an adult. Hell, my parents have been divorced for nearly two years now and he still hasn't grasped the idea that he can't get back my mother. His inability to cope with their divorce stems from the fact that he's never developed an individuality without her. He stopped his mental and emotional development at the point in which he had to help raise a child. My mother was/is quite similar, but fortunately enough for her, she began to develop a sense of identity through her children. Unfortunately, this came much later in life and was still stunted by my father's inability to grow up. Only recently has she really began to take on a mentality that is considered adult-like. Most people who are parents at a young age never achieve that point. And so their children grow up in a similar fashion. And so the cycle continues. Why did I break the mold? Too much reading and too much curiosity. And an unnatural dislike for my father (due to his activities, not some sort of Freudian need for love from my mother)...And so I've seen the other side of it, the life of a child who is, at a certain level, shown how much he's unwanted by even one of the parents. I know what kind of thoughts go through those children's minds. And i've known others who were born in similar situations who didn't make it through life nearly as well. Two are in prison. Another i've been told committed suicide. The others will never be well-adjusted emotionally, never settle down into any sort of comfortable situation, and will live the most of their lives (unless they work out their issues) unhappy and miserable.
My point? I am happy i turned out the way i am. but alternately, i would never wish to put a single soul through even a tenth of what i've had to endure, and my life has been fairly tame compared to many others. if a woman knows she is incapable of raising her child properly, or is not emotionally ready for the task, then she should have the option to prevent that from happening. It's her body, her life. I'll even concede that it may be immoral at some level, depending on your view of life and the unborn child. But isn't it up to that woman to decide whether or not it's immoral? If it is, then let her live with it on her concious that she aborted a child.
With the death penalty, it's similar. Rather than being concerned with the value of an unborn child, the concern is with whether or not someone should recieve the ultimate punishment. Once again, what is your value of human life? Do you feel that those who have committed extreme crimes should be treated with such extreme measures? Personally, i think they should endure worse than death. But the american prison system babies its inmates and treats them better than most hotels. The american education system is worse punishment than the prison system. But should we put men to death? I'm mixed on the issue. I would rather let that person endure a long, grueling life in a sweat shop as punishment, being forced to endure living with their crimes. I would put them through a series of conditioning where they are forced to be reminded of the wrongness of their crime. Some would consider it torture and a cruelty that is undue in our civilized society. But to highten that sense of guilt and self-loathing, justice is being done. Many criminals, if giving the proper rehabilitation and shown exactly what effect their crimes have had (at least, true criminals and not your lame insurance fraud character...), will feel some level of guilt, remorse...On the other hand, i'd have no problem with serial killers, terrorists, etc. being executed. Their minds are beyond that of repair. In the end, it should be based off of the psychology of the individual, of what we can do socially to repair their minds, or if we can, and what should be done from there. Concentrate a little less on the guy growing pot in his basement, concentrate a little more on repairing and returning people to society.
Then again, i'm a walking contradicition...I'll prolly go through and edit this and repost it later...off to work...