Fool’s Errand

So, the past 24 hours have reignited the abortion-in-the-case-of-rape firestorm. I’m not going to lie — a large part of me would like to see it doused and left for some other time to…..well, I suppose “resolve” might be overly optimistic.  But I’ve felt compelled to speak up this time. And, in the process, I appear to have ruffled a feather or two.  

Ultimately, I’d like to collect my tweets and thoughts on the matter into a more comprehensive essay, but a question was put to me this evening on Twitter that warrants a more immediate answer — one that won’t fit neatly into a 140 character tweet — or even several strung neatly together.  So, I’m going to try to address it here briefly, then hopefully expound upon it as time permits. 

Alright then, to the question: “But you can’t expect a woman to be raped and forced to go through with her pregnancy.”  (Or, I suppose, to make it a proper question, “How can you expect a woman who’s raped to go through with her pregnancy?”)  The answer is easy if one simply dismisses the notion of the life within her as life — or life that holds sufficient value to warrant consideration:  “You can’t.”  I’ve read all the arguments — even made them myself in days gone by.  How much more compelling a case for terminating a pregnancy can one make than pointing out that a victim of rape should be spared even an ounce of further trauma, if possible?

But what if one doesn’t simply dismiss that notion? What if one believes that all life holds value?  Even life in its infancy?  (Heck, some might even argue that that is precisely when it holds the most value — innocent, full of potential.)  If one holds that belief — that all life has value — then the question becomes what — if anything — trumps that?  What of mine justifies my taking that from you?  The only thing I can come back with is my own life — and even then, not always.  (For instance, if I could save my daughter’s life by sacrificing mine, then I would. In a heartbeat.)  But if we’re considering the notion of you threatening my life (or the life of another), then most would agree, I would be justified in taking yours.

Beyond that, I can think of no justification for taking your life away from you.  Because I do believe that all life holds value, and I do believe that unborn child is a life.  Which is how I can expect a woman who’s raped to go through with her pregnancy. As much as I abhor what was done to her, I abhor the taking of the innocent life which resulted even more.  

In sum, it comes down to the value one assigns to life, and when.  For those who assign little to it, or who only assign value to it after birth, or even viability, terminating it prior will seem justified — even preferred, in the case of rape.  For those who assign much to it, beginning with conception, or perhaps implantation, terminating it will never seem justified, unless it is to save the life of the mother.

I’d say, “and never the ‘twain shall meet,” but folks seem to fall a number of different places along that line.  I’m not naive enough to think I’ll persuade many to my way of thinking.  Then again, I was once over on the other side of things, and yet, here I am.  So, perhaps it is a fool’s errand…to think that by saying these things, I might actually reach a mind or touch a heart.  But I won’t regret trying. 

One thing I’ve often wondered, though, if true compromise were on the table — if those who fall in the “pro-choice” camp were assured that abortion would remain a legal option in cases of rape, incest and life of the mother — how many of them would agree to it?  


Some Quick Thoughts on Today’s Hearing

I was able to watch most of today’s hearing by the Congressional Oversight Committee, and I live-tweeted much of it.  I’d like to write something a bit more substantial on it all once I’ve collected my thoughts, but until then, I’ll use this post to collect my thoughts as I watched today:

“Does the word ‘REQUEST’ mean Request?” #Issa #Libya

“”The correct number” … doesn’t ring true….” #Issa #Libya

Hmmm… 3+2 vs. 5+2 #Libya

Wait – why are we asking about Cairo? #Norton #Libya

I’m going to have to go back & review the transcript of this. Lot of information covered.

#Kucinich weighing in with history lesson.

Wood: “AQ’s presence grows more every day….they are certainly more established than we are.” #Libya

Nordstrom: “We received a Danger Pay Increase.” #Libya

Wood: “There was frustration from the beginning….” #Libya

Nordstrom was told: “You CANNOT request an SST extension.” #Libya

Wood: “It was instantly recognizable to me as a terrorist attack.” #Libya

Safe to say Nordstrom’s not happy with the responses his requests for additional security received. #Libya

Wood: Special Forces Soldiers are well above the abilities of the “backfilling” resources put in their stead. #Libya

Issa’s giving Kennedy no quarter. #Libya

#Kelly isn’t puling any punches. #Libya

The problem, Amb. Kennedy, w your & Amb. Rice’s claims is that they flat out don’t pass the smell test. They didn’t then. They don’t now.

Still can’t follow the logic of the security reduction. #Libya

#Gowdy laying down the boom. #Libya

So Gowdy wants Rice & Carney to testify…. #Libya

#Farenthold w a great question: Are there other embassies similarly situated?

DAS Lamb: If Libya was so volatile, WHY the reduction? #Libya

Was there some sort of pissing match going on btwn DOS and DOD? #Libya

Wood: “Cookie cutter approach.” #Libya

Rorhrabacher to Kennedy: “You’re engaged in stonewalling or a coverup.” #Libya

Sandy Adams gets some names out of Lamb. Nicely done. #Libya

#Adams calls out Kennedy for helping out Lamb. #Libya

Issa points out the exclusion of Fox on the Press Avail. #Libya

Jake Tapper ‏@jaketapper
Frmr Regional Security Officer Nordstrom says of State Dept blocking his security requests: “for me the Taliban were inside the building.”

IF Amb. Rice was so concerned about qualifying her comments and protecting them behind “information as we know it” wall, why speculate…that it was a spontaneous response to the video? Why attribute a cause at all?

Dean Clark ‏@earldean71
@SmoosieQ yes, like in a deposition, “I don’t know” is always a great answer.
 SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ
@earldean71 They could have run with that for at least a week instead of trotting out the “The video maker acted stupidly” schtick. #BadCall

If *I,* sitting in my family room on 9/16 could see her comments were total BS, how could she not? #ImplausibleDeniability

Also, why did DAS Lamb keep trotting out the “limited resources” bit if, as she acknowledged, this wasn’t about $$?

The logic is lacking. Something drove this reduction in security personnel in spite of the heightened threats. What the hell was it?

RB ‏@RBPundit
@SmoosieQ They were trying to send a signal that everything was fine. It was a tragic error in strategy.

SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ

@RBPundit That’s the only thing that remotely makes sense. How they couldn’t see the disaster this could lead to is beyond me.

RB ‏@RBPundit
@SmoosieQ It comes from the mindset that we are the reason the extremists hate us. Our mere presence there incites them, they think.
 SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ
@RBPundit Which is especially ridiculous given the call to go into Libya in the first place. #AmateurHour


Editing in:  My Tweets in response to the 9/16 Sunday shows:


SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ

Already calling BS on Ambassador Rice. The President of Libya says the attacks were planned. Spontaneous my rear.

Liz Mair ‏@LizMair
I have no inside knowledge that enables me to say this definitively, but I have a sneaking suspicion Amb Rice didn’t quite tell whole truth.
Retweeted by SmoosieQ


Ellen Carmichael ‏@ellencarmichael
Truly mind-blowing that the Obama Administration is attempting to downplay the severity of what’s going on in ME, chalking it up to video.
Retweeted by SmoosieQ


SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ
They view us as weak, Madame Ambassador. You aren’t persuasive.

Matt Cover ‏@MattCover
Who decided to have Susan Rice give such air cover to Morsi? Weird.
Details Reply Retweet Favorite

@MattCover At least McCain is calling BS.

SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ
@Tenna0 With their RPG’s!!


SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ
I have to at least give Bob Schieffer credit for having the decency to appear perplexed by Amb Rice’s contradiction of the Libyan President.


SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ
Dear Ambassador Rice: So…we completely disregard what el-Magerif’s info tells him?


SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ
El-Magerif: “These attacks were premeditated.” Rice: “These are not the droids you’re looking for.”


SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ
What would be el-Magerif’s incentive to lie about the attacks being premeditated?


SmoosieQ ‏@SmoosieQ
It really sucks when I’m forced to assume it’s OUR leaders who are lying. And for political cover no less.


Monica Crowley ‏@MonicaCrowley
Amb Susan Rice this morning still blaming the video for the attacks, claiming they weren’t “premeditated,”& that “we’re not impotent.” #HELP
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@MonicaCrowley I find her credibility….lacking.

Don’t Count Your Big Birds Before They’re Hatched

The news is positive this fine sunny Tuesday, four weeks before Election Day:  Romney is still riding high off his rout of Obama at last Wednesday’s debate; poll numbers are shifting in the right direction; certain liberals (and Andrew Sullivan) are edging toward DEFCon 1; and the Obama campaign has resorted to having Muppet proxies fight their battles. (Muppets?  Seriously?!  As I observed last Thursday, I’d rather be clinging to my guns and Bible than a giant yellow Muppet with feathers….)  All this – why, it’s enough to give a fiscally conservative/socially moderate girl (dare I say it?)….hope! 

But, as I also just reminded my Twitter followers: 28 days is an eternity.  There are far too many variables in play, and momentum can turn on a dime.  So don’t let up, don’t lose focus and don’t count your chickens Big Birds before they’re hatched. Stay the course!!