February 1st, 2002

Trevor baby stare

Here comes the sun, doo do doo doo do...

I arose at 4:30 am this morning, after a rousing four and a half hours of sleep. I donned (radiating out from my core) a long sleeve shirt, a sweater, a Green Man T-shirt, a navy wool cloak, undies, sweatpants, shell pants, one pair of socks, hiking boots, winter gloves, and a shark hat. I trudged down to Safeway to buy a bag of apples and a bag of bagels. The guy at the counter liked my cape.

I then met up with the rest of the merry pagans, got in a car, and drove to halfway house on Flagstaff Mountain. After about half an hour of trying to start a fire (somewhat successfully), we gave a close to accurate rendition of an Imbolc ritual. (Copied from the web, but I have misplaced my copy of the ritual, and thus lack the URL.) My dressing worked quite well in all respects except my feet. Two layers of socks would've been a good idea. But what do pagans do when they get cold feet? Drum the sun up and dance. The quarter-till-7 eastern sky was a lovely gradient of orange to light blue, and the moon was resplendant above the mountains. WIth the fire not performing up to snuff, we decided to retreat to Heather and Brian's house to warm up and have hot breakfast items. So much for trying to recreate our bagel and apple roasting experience of last year. Andy and I watched the sun rise from town. Only in Colorado would one watch the sunrise while facing west.

I didn't get too many stares for wearing a cloak around campus. I mean, when someone has a shark on his head, what conclusion are you to draw from a big black cape? Kaleigh said the two articles didn't go well together. But when it's dark and cold, I don't worry about clothes clashing. (What's that? I don't worry about clothes clashing when it's light and warm either? Point.)

But despite our weak encouragement, spring agreed to return. You can thank us later.

Now the only question is how little sleep I'll get while philosophizing all weekend.

(Interesting aside: My client appears to have a bug. There are 16 "Web" menus on the screen. 15 say the same thing, the other says "No Web menu available." Fun!)
  • Current Music
    Dance, dance, wherever you may be / I am the Lord of the Dance, you see! / I live in you, and you live in Me / And I lead you all in the Dance, said He!
Trevor baby stare

The Problems with Fetal Rights

Some potential probelms with defining life to begin at conception, in light of recent policy announcements by the Bush administration.

First, if this is done to provide prenatal care for mothers, why define life at such an arbitrary point as conception? Part of responsible mothering is proper planning. Should CHIP provide coverage for pregnancy tests (not sure if there's a fetus yet or not!), planning visits to the doctor, fertility drugs, etc? Can you take a health insurance policy out for your unborn child and then cash in when you miscarriage? There's gotta be a way to abuse that, though it may not be worth the annoyance.

If fetuses are persons, could a woman who miscarries be charged with involuntary manslaughter? If you shoot a pregnant woman, will you get two murder charges? What if the embryo is in the process of splitting into identical twins. Two and a half charges?

Further, upon what grounds is the fetus a human? Not on any functional grounds, and near conception not on any significant biological grounds. The Bush administration obviously doesn't want to protect it just because it's a living being. The only two things human about an embryo are its DNA and its potential. But if these were conditions for personhood, how can Bush oppose stem cells and cloning? A clone has human DNA and human potential.

But my real objection is as follows. The right to life is not just a bitter claim to shards of undesirability. The right to life is the right to a life worth living. Just as the right to liberty isn't met with a miniscule amount of liberty (you have the freedom to choose the color of your bedsheets), the right to life isn't met when you're forced to live in miserable conditions.

And what living conditions are more miserable than being an unwanted child? If your mother would prefer to stop the spread of her genes, revolting against innate urges of love and caring, would you really want her to be a part of your life?

All people will die. What matters is what a person does between birth and death. If life will be terrible for the get-go, the liver will likely cause problems for others, etc., the responsible thing to do is to end the project before anyone vests interest in it. The world is already full of enough problematic unloved children. Do not bring another to the faceless crowd.

Just remember, Hitler, Stalin, bin Laden, Harris, and Klebold could all have been aborted. Will you make the right choice?

This message has been brought to you by the 32 "Web" menus atop my screen.
  • Current Music
    The Doors - Riders on the Storm