Author Topic: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality  (Read 8909 times)

Offline saw50st8

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #45 on: May 20, 2019, 06:09:49 PM »
If you think I am disputing that rape causes trama (and that that trama is increased when a pregnancy results) you haven't read a word I wrote.

The point I made repeatedly is that trama, or pain is not a reason to take a life. Obviously if that trama is a risk to the mother's life (as defined by Torah and assessed by a competent posek) then we return to the discussion of rodef.

Yes it is (with exceptions and nuance).

Of course you can. What is the teen pregnancy rate in Williamsburg, Boro Park or Lakewood?

What you can do is bombard kids with sex in culture 24/7 and then expect a sex-ed class with the gym teacher to counter what they see every day on TV.

The bigger problem with this argument is that it pretends that teen/pre-marital sex is fine as long as it doesn't end in pregnancy. That idea certainly doesn't come from Torah...


Many frum women have been given heterim to abort including for reasons relating to trauma and rape.

The Torah does not agree with the American pro-life version.  Unless you think every Rabbi who gives a heterosexual is wrong.  The Torah supports abortion based on circumstance and the pro-life lobby does not really. 

As to abstinence only education,  I'm not sure if you are being facetious or not.  Williamsburg doesn't rely on just abstinence only education.  They sequester boys and girls to completely avoid each other.  They are not together at school. It is also ludicrous to expect that of society at large.  And kids from those communities do get pregnant and have abortions but they are largely not discussed (and at a rate lower than in general society).

Quite honestly,  I think that the recent swing to the pro-life side of abortion in the frum community just means that catholic values have infiltrated the Jewish community. 

Offline Shkop

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #46 on: May 20, 2019, 06:21:16 PM »
You mean this?Any moreh hora'a who can ignore that probably shouldn't be paskening.

My point was, in zh cohen's words, trama, or pain is not a reason to take a life.
And as I believe is inherent in your words, in all cases an extremely competent moreh hora'a should be involved
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Offline mmgfarb

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #47 on: May 20, 2019, 07:01:28 PM »
The Torah does not agree with the American pro-life version.  Unless you think every Rabbi who gives a heterosexual is wrong.  The Torah supports abortion based on circumstance and the pro-life lobby does not really. 


Quite honestly,  I think that the recent swing to the pro-life side of abortion in the frum community just means that catholic values have infiltrated the Jewish community.
Exactly. Both of these points are what I was trying to say in the other thread but people here seem unable to grasp either of these concepts.
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Online yitzgar

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #48 on: May 20, 2019, 07:56:20 PM »


[quote author=saw50st8 link=topic=103824.msg2094072#msg2094072 date=1558390189).

Quite honestly,  I think that the recent swing to the pro-life side of abortion in the frum community just means that catholic values have infiltrated the Jewish community.
[/quote]

Possibly. But I would think that the Torah view is closer to pro life than the pro choice side espoused by today's liberal politicians and media

Offline Definitions

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #49 on: May 20, 2019, 08:49:48 PM »
As to abstinence only education,  I'm not sure if you are being facetious or not.  Williamsburg doesn't rely on just abstinence only education.  They sequester boys and girls to completely avoid each other.  They are not together at school.
I know this is off topic. This is one of my biggest ( rage inducing) pet peeves and related to this

Me and the word teenager don't get along very well.

Are you saying that it's because they separate boys and girls and not due to the beliefs of those young adults?
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Offline Shkop

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #50 on: May 20, 2019, 09:00:51 PM »
The Torah does not agree with the American pro-life version.

Well, lets compare. Checking Wikipedia on Anti-abortion movement it reads: Anti-abortion movements, also referred to as pro-life movements, are involved in the abortion debate advocating against the practice of abortion and its legality. Checking out R' Moshe's tshuvah, it reads:

לברר שהריגת עובר אסורה באסור רציחה בין בעכום
בין בישראל... ולכן לדינא... איכא איסור רציחה מלא
תרצח גם על עובר ורק שפטור ההורגו ממיתה

So it seems pretty compatible.

Quite honestly,  I think that the recent swing to the pro-life side of abortion in the frum community just means that catholic values have infiltrated the Jewish community.

What recent swing are you talking about? Frum people always abominated the pro-choice movement. Actually what we are seeing, based on what happened in Alabama, is the opposite.

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #51 on: May 20, 2019, 09:13:31 PM »
-1 feeling would be I want it so I take it, logic dictates that I own something and if you take it you are a thief.
I'm not following. Are you saying my question is wrong or my answer?
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Offline AussieMan

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #52 on: May 20, 2019, 09:16:42 PM »

The Torah does not agree with the American pro-life version. 

Quite honestly,  I think that the recent swing to the pro-life side of abortion in the frum community just means that catholic values have infiltrated the Jewish community.

Pro-life may not be 100% a Torah value, but pro-choice is clearly much further away. The Torah clearly doesn't give us a "choice" regarding our body.

We shouldn't push Torah values on American society, but we can fight the extreme liberals. The problem in politics is that you can't be anti-choice unless you subscribe to pro-life

As a side, a couple of questions related to the topic
Do pro-choice give the dad the choice to abort? or are they only pro women's choice?
What's so bad to say that abortion is murder which we allow for convenience, just like we don't get involved in the murder of animals out of convenience.

Offline zh cohen

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #53 on: May 21, 2019, 12:25:47 AM »

What's so bad to say that abortion is murder which we allow for convenience, just like we don't get involved in the murder of animals out of convenience.

I think the word you are looking for is "killing" not murder. (Although it depends on your definition of "lawful")

Offline saw50st8

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #54 on: May 21, 2019, 02:26:42 AM »
Well, lets compare. Checking Wikipedia on Anti-abortion movement it reads: Anti-abortion movements, also referred to as pro-life movements, are involved in the abortion debate advocating against the practice of abortion and its legality. Checking out R' Moshe's tshuvah, it reads:

לברר שהריגת עובר אסורה באסור רציחה בין בעכום
בין בישראל... ולכן לדינא... איכא איסור רציחה מלא
תרצח גם על עובר ורק שפטור ההורגו ממיתה

So it seems pretty compatible.

What recent swing are you talking about? Frum people always abominated the pro-choice movement. Actually what we are seeing, based on what happened in Alabama, is the opposite.



Torah is against the free choice of pro-choice movement, but Torah does allow abortions. You would be surprised at how many frum teenagers and women have had abortions because it is not discussed at all within the community. They range from teenage pregnancies to rape to fetuses incompatible with life. If you want a frum woman to be able to follow the psak of her Rabbi if she needs an abortion, you cannot be anti-abortion. They won't be available.

As to the Catholic infiltration - it is only in the last ten years or so that I've heard frum people being so anti-abortion. In years past, everyone I knew was pragmatic and believed abortions should be available for when necessary. I think with the same swing to the right of religion in general, Catholic puritanism has infiltrated in a much more mainstream way.

Pro-life may not be 100% a Torah value, but pro-choice is clearly much further away. The Torah clearly doesn't give us a "choice" regarding our body.

We shouldn't push Torah values on American society, but we can fight the extreme liberals. The problem in politics is that you can't be anti-choice unless you subscribe to pro-life

As a side, a couple of questions related to the topic
Do pro-choice give the dad the choice to abort? or are they only pro women's choice?
What's so bad to say that abortion is murder which we allow for convenience, just like we don't get involved in the murder of animals out of convenience.

I agree that we shouldn't push Torah values on the American public. I also believe that until fetus is viable, abortion is a much murkier area than anyone likes to talk about. Until a fetus is viable outside the womb, it is essentially a parasite. That makes it a health issue (mental health included) for the women carrying the baby. Unless you think a woman should be able to order a man's vasectomy, this falls squarely into a women's rights issue. The father has rights once the baby is born.

We definitely kill animals out of convenience and desire. Are you a vegan?

Offline zh cohen

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #55 on: May 21, 2019, 07:15:09 AM »
Torah is against the free choice of pro-choice movement, but Torah does allow abortions. You would be surprised at how many frum teenagers and women have had abortions because it is not discussed at all within the community. They range from teenage pregnancies to rape to fetuses incompatible with life. If you want a frum woman to be able to follow the psak of her Rabbi if she needs an abortion, you cannot be anti-abortion. They won't be available.

As to the Catholic infiltration - it is only in the last ten years or so that I've heard frum people being so anti-abortion. In years past, everyone I knew was pragmatic and believed abortions should be available for when necessary. I think with the same swing to the right of religion in general, Catholic puritanism has infiltrated in a much more mainstream way.

I agree that we shouldn't push Torah values on the American public. I also believe that until fetus is viable, abortion is a much murkier area than anyone likes to talk about. Until a fetus is viable outside the womb, it is essentially a parasite. That makes it a health issue (mental health included) for the women carrying the baby. Unless you think a woman should be able to order a man's vasectomy, this falls squarely into a women's rights issue. The father has rights once the baby is born.

We definitely kill animals out of convenience and desire. Are you a vegan?

Do you have any torah source for the distinction between before viability and after?

It's really interesting to see that those who are blaming outside influences for the Jewish view are clearly basing their views on a secular culture.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2019, 07:59:33 AM by zh cohen »

Offline AussieMan

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #56 on: May 21, 2019, 07:57:12 AM »
I think I agree with everything you wrote.

Even if pro choice is further away from Jewish value than pro life, pro choice wil give us more flexibility regarding living life the way Torah mandates, as the government is less involved.

However from a moral perspective, pro choice to me is evil.
I think the government should permit it since there is no magical way to determine when human life begins. I  just think the dad should also have a choice to kill the fetus (in theory, if he was able to do so without hurting the mother).


Offline ADG

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #57 on: May 21, 2019, 09:25:29 AM »
Religious matter? Would you argue that the government should look away in a case where a man shoots his neighbor because it is a religious matter? After all, the sin of murder is based on the concept that man is created in G-d's image. Not even a liberal would argue that. In fact, one of the 7 Laws of Noah is to establish court systems, so they better not look away.

The argument of the sanctity of life is very different them murdering your neighbor, as is abortion.

Even the Torah does not equate the two. (Only one has a din of redef until the baby is born)

Offline Yonah

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #58 on: May 21, 2019, 09:33:19 AM »
My personal position is (still formulating but) I do believe in the sanctity of life but its probably not the government's place to protect that because it is a religious matter.  If someone made a horrible mistake, I think they should be able to get abortion early on- not late in the game. (pretty much on the side of roe I guess)

According to the CDC (the stats are the most recent from 2015) 91% of abortions happen before the 12th week, and 67% before the 8th week (they don't break it down further than that).

There is also no rationale breakdown on their site - i.e. why did this woman have an abortion. I would imagine that most of the later term abortions are because of medical reasons, but I can't offer any proof to back it up.

Offline dealfinder11

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Re: Thoughts on abortion, religion, and morality
« Reply #59 on: May 21, 2019, 09:34:05 AM »
A very interesting thread . Thanx to all who have expressed and articulated their opinions.

I have a few observations/questions:

1.

Winston Churchill has been quoted as saying: " A young conservative has no heart, an old liberal has no brain".
 
The fact that the liberal position on abortion has been established as "pro choice" i find to be interesting. If emotion is what guides your position, often at the expense of reason, then why would the entire party gravitate to the emotional anguish of a person who wishes to preform an abortion - for whatever reason - as opposed to the extreme unfairness and horror dealt to the unborn?

Likewise, If free choice is the rallying cry for most conservatives, and the government should not be dictating decisions for the citizens of this country, then why are conservatives almost unanimously "pro life"?

I'm inclined do believe the reason behind this is more to do with the religious divide between the parties but that seems to be only a small part.

2. I think the advent of technology has significantly affected, and will continue to effect, the debate. Not only from a social media standpoint, but also from the advance of photographic ability. The ultrasound picture quality that exists today is exponentially more vivid and graphic than those from even a couple years ago. I think that it is possible that some of the emotionally charged positions may be dynamic for this reason.