feminism/abortion-state of the debate
Robert V. Scheetz
ay581 at yfn.ysu.edu
Mon Aug 14 18:17:21 MDT 1995
Henwood: "... The US anti-abortion movement was
founded in the mid-19C by physicians hot to improve their status and
increase their fees by shutting down midwives and non-degreed abortionists."
What about the Hippocratic "Oath"? Doesn't it argue a humanist
position on abortion for the medical profession and the general
culture? Additionally, of course, it pledges M.D.'s against Kevorkian,
re-inforcing, it would seem, the general humanist morality of the point,
i.e. the sacrality of life.
Re the lists growing impatience with this argument on the points of
(a) style and (2) purported lack of content/productivity:
All the cloacal stuff has issued from the mouth of one party only.
Rogers & co.'s idea of intellectual combat apparently comes from Maury Povich.
However, this format presents them with an unaccustomed difficulty...how
do you shout down an argument in cyberspace and how "ad hominem" an opponent
about whom you know nothing personal?
Secondly, I have consistently presented argument. The response
has taken the general forms: personal abuse; dismissivity, "uninformed"
"unserious" etc., ex cathedra, simply that it is an article in the "left" doxology,
and now sabotage. With the exception of Henwood's referred does none
of you feminists feel the least intellectual compunction at having offered nothing
but ad hominem and abuse.
Many here are apparently very cozy on the bosom of Mother Capitalism;
want to suckle serenely on scholarly issues, resent the breach in tranquility.
Feminism/abortion, along with nationalism, racism...these ideologies are the texts of
power. Challenging them invariably churns the deep. But lacking the stomach
and nerve for precisely this intellectual combat, you may be Marx scholars, I guess,
Anyway, here's the beginning of a thumbnail sketch of the Existential Marxist Humanist
Neitzsche proclaimed, "Great Pan is dead!", meaning (not "God" in the narrow sense - that
was Voltaire's "ecrasez..."), Western mythology, the Logos itself, the matrix of value and
meaning, most immediately the Enlightenment, the belief in the amelioration of mankind
thru the application of instrumental reason, science, is dead. The radical falsity of
Enlightenment weltanschuuang, Zarathustra's insight, was dramatically confirmed for the
rest of us by Freud, Weber, WW I,...etc. and seems reconfirmed daily for us (Bosnia,
Susan Smith, Waco,...etc).
The post-modern dillemma is nihilism, the meaninglessness, absurdity...etc, of human
history, existence. Like Zarathustra we have to create meaning, i.e. a
normative matrix, a circumambient Logos, mythology, that makes sense of our
post-modern existence (justifies the ways of God to man), coherently validates our
Heiddeger had one vision, Sartrean Marxism another,
while the hegemonic bourgeoisie, flush as they are with material gratifications, have
never been propelled to an authentic sensibility/consciousness and so perdure in the
fatuity of a degraded form of the Enlightenment myth of "progress", viz.
technocracy (the will to power in the faustian drive to subjugate nature - so decried
by Heidegger, and vividly imagined by Aldous Huxley).
This is daily more troubling with the advances of bio-engineering.
Child nurturing ("day care", etc.) is substantially capitalistic now,
commercial surragate gestation is now available, "motherless" (i.e. egg from an aborted
feotus) children are now possible. Soon they will offer the benefit of manipulating
the genetic program of eggs and sperm for "designer babies". And the commercial
harvesting of feotus's for tissue and organs is inevitable (probably already a growth
industry in some parts of the world). All of this will be done, of course, in the name of
"progress" and "rights" while our doubts are salved by "experts" who assure us that our
misgivings arise only from metaphysics, i.e.superstitutions. And, of course, the same logic
applies for "defectives". Science will assure us that alzheimer's victims, the severely
retarded, etc., are not, or no longer, "human beings"...just blobs of insensate protoplasm,
which we have every right ....
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