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Abortion 💔

Undoubtedly someone who reads this has had an abortion. I love you and would be honored to help you. If you are in a crisis pregnancy, I would be honored to help you (and have worked with crisis pregnancy groups in the past). But as our country is dealing with an issue that is so impactful, the discussion must be straight forward.

With the latest political developments, I’m so absolutely appalled at the horrific turn our country has taken that I’m breathless. I’m shocked. I’m angry.

A child is a human life. It is of infinite worth.

If a woman’s life is actually in danger, there’s an actual equal value proposition, and I understand that as a heartbreaking situation with different parameters than most we encounter. I also understand that women bear the far greater burden of pregnancy—and that is a complex part of the legality—but I don’t believe it’s a morally complex issue.

This subject came up today in a group I’m in and my thoughts were too long and unwieldy to post there. So—in a completely non-academic stream—here are the points that have formed over decades of thinking about this issue, watching our culture devolve, and being amongst those who long predicted the obvious end game of all of this.

  1. It’s not your body anyone is talking about.
  2. That life begins at conception is an issue of science, not religion. Per Maureen Condic, Ph.D.:

    The conclusion that human life begins at sperm-egg fusion is uncontested, objective, based on the universally accepted scientific method of distinguishing different cell types from each other and on ample scientific evidence (thousands of independent, peer-reviewed publications).

  3. There is no doctrine on when the spirit enters the body. I dare say that, “We don’t know, so it’s OK to kill it.” is a morally vacant position.
  4. I am the product of an unwanted pregnancy. I would not prefer to be dead. Even though life is hard and even though my birth mother didn’t want me.
  5. The pretty, purified euphemisms used around abortion are dishonest, at very least. This isn’t about “choice” or “women’s rights” or “reproductive health.” It’s about the “choice to end the life of a baby” or a “woman’s legal right to end the life of her baby” or “reproductive death.”
  6. Do you oppose sex trafficking? Do you think it should be illegal? I’m going to say there’s an unqualified yes to that. So…do you demand that all those who said yes (you!):
    1. Personally participate in child-rescue sting operations?
    2. Personally adopt all the rescued children?
    3. Personally pay for the stings and rescued children?
    4. Personally ensure that everyone who might one day buy a sex slave get adequate education and training about how to not buy a sex slave?

    I loathe when pro-aborts claim that in order to have a rational/ethical position on an issue one must take personal responsibility for all the actions of others.

    It’s utterly irrational and impossible. Of course, that’s the point. Purposefully demand something that cannot be accomplished as some kind of “proof” that the person with the position doesn’t “care enough” to be granted the right to have a position in order to avoid the actual discussion. It’s fallacious ad hominem that proves nothing.

    Most of you likely even opposed to drunk driving. But somehow you are not parked in front of every bar every night to drive home all the people who throw back too many.

    The logic is so incredibly flawed.

  7. If you support the legality of abortion (however you want to parse that), you should at very least be well informed on the actual medical process, just as you would be with any other procedure you were supporting. The baby is burned, dismembered, has their skull impaled, etc. It’s a horrific process for both the mother and the baby. But the baby dies.
  8. Claiming that you support abortion legally but not morally is untenable. We aren’t talking about drinking coffee or screwing around with whomever you choose. We are talking about life and death. It is the single most significant issue we deal with as a society.

    Do any of you claim that you “support wife-beating legally but not morally”? Or even that you “support men leaving their wives and children and refusing to support them legally but not morally”? None of you do. Yet when it comes to an actual human being brutally killed, you are suddenly passive about what immoral things should be legal. Because you’d never want to impose our morality on someone else. So, you’ll have to just tolerate the slaughter of babies and look the other way.

  9. Aborting a child because they might have pain or might have a hard life or might feel bad because they were “unloved” would be laughable if it were not lethal.

    Someone might have a tough life (who doesn’t?) so they will be better off dead, you know, so they don’t risk dealing with crap?

    Guys, that is what this is saying. This is the pretense of compassion for possible suffering that is addressed by killing the other person so they don’t have to risk suffering.

    All of you are going to suffer sometime during the rest of your lives. 100% certainty. Should someone else be allowed to decide to end your life if they don’t want to deal with that risk? (Because as of today, all of you are willing to deal with that risk…or you wouldn’t be reading this.)

  10. Aborting a child because they won’t survive long after birth isn’t compassion. None of us will survive indefinitely. Should someone else have the right to put us to death so it won’t be such a bother to them or so they won’t have to deal with our natural death?Which sounds worse to you personally?
    1. Live birth; palliative care; tenderness from people who love you; die naturally
    2. Dismemberment or scissors crammed in the base of your skull followed by brains being sucked into a bucket

    Which would you chose for yourself? Why would you choose differently for an innocent baby?

  11. Whether or not a pregnant woman has difficulty making the decision to abort a child doesn’t change the outcome to the child.
  12. If you believe God will not allow anyone to be robbed of life due to the actions of others in abortion, you cannot believe in murder—unless God sanctions it.

    In other words, there is no such thing as murder because everyone whose life is ended at the hand of another will be reincarnated (or something?) and still get to live that full life. So it doesn’t really impact the victim.But we do believe in agency. Even in agency that impacts others in the worst possible ways.

  13. Whether or not there is adequate (whatever that means) sex ed doesn’t change the moral value of a life.
  14. Whether or not there is “access” to birth control doesn’t change the moral value of a life. And, for the love of all that is holy, people, condoms cost 50¢ a pop—and work remarkably well when used correctly—how much “access” do you need?
  15. If someone hurts me, it does not justify me in hurting someone innocent.

May God have mercy on us.

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I’m Crying Over Temple Changes — In a Good Way

I’m just going to put this right here:

LDS Church changes temple ceremony; faithful feminists will see revisions and additions as a ‘leap forward’

While I only label myself a feminist with a lot of caveats (and typical feminists don’t accept me in the fold), fairness (real fairness, not some kind of reverse dominance or reparations) has been part of my psyche since I was four years old.

Since I was endowed in 1985, the temple experience has improved incrementally. But there was still enough inequity, subordination, and intermediary stuff that it has always been difficult and somewhat painful. I have tried to overlook those things that bothered me by simply noting historical sexism, recognizing that human perceptions and biases exist among humans whether they are leaders or not, and recognizing that systemic sexism in a large institution would likely change very slowly (like most all changes). But I have still always left with the inferiority of women being affirmed.

I have not seen the new ceremony—I intend to go this week, literally as soon as possible—but what I’ve heard has my heart utterly rejoicing. I was not sure I would see these changes—which I have long felt were needed are correct—in my lifetime.

It takes a certain…hmmmm…chutzpah for a leader to make massive changes in an established organization rather than just continue with the status quo. Those changes will be disruptive and are likely to create pushback (thus the need for chutzpah). I haven’t liked all of President Nelson’s changes thus far. But, boy, this one thing will cover a world of hurt for me.

Go ahead and abolish ‘Mormon’ from the lexicon, with all the costs and SEO involved (and, no, I’m still not changing my site name)! If you are able to see needs of this sort through it all, I can deal with just about anything.

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October 2018 General Conference

Here is your open thread to talk about all things Saturday, October 6th, General Conference. Of course, perhaps the only thing is the two-hour block.

Rumored for well over 20 years, this has finally, finally happened. I’m kind of overjoyed. Your thoughts?

What did you think of the General Women’s Session? Rebranding (yes, it is)? All the controversy? Social media fast (nope)?

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Two issues many members of the church—myself included—are struggling with are gender and sexuality. Both are highly charged. Here I am sharing some ideas that I’ve had to help me reconcile church positions with my own logic. I’m attempting to do so with respect and ask that any response be returned in the same way.

Systemic Disparity

Since I was four years old I have been confused, sad, disappointed, discouraged, angry, baffled by the gender disparity in the church. Just as I did not ever believe that God created a racial hierarchy in his kingdom, I have never believed in a gender one.  [click to continue…]

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Large institutions move slowly. Sometimes painfully slowly. When your own impressions of the need for change occurred decades before you saw an evidence of movement—and you’re afraid you will literally be dead before what you dream for comes to fruition—it can be excruciatingly painful.

gender-changes-lds-general-conference

To be clear, I believe our Heavenly Parents both love all of us infinitely. I do not believe they favor men over women, nor do I think they want men to be the sole decision-makers and women to be subordinate followers. I believe they are the quintessential equal partnership and hope for the same for all of us.

But, back to earthly reality, there were two small changes this spring and I think even small positive change is worth noting and celebrating. [click to continue…]

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Spring 2018 General Conference Thoughts

Happy Easter! Due to the long lack of substantive activity here, I realize few will see this. If, however, you have thoughts you’d like to add in the comments, you are more than welcome to. [click to continue…]

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My Favorite Mathematics Curriculum

Over the years (often as a result of my overt distaste for Saxon math) I have been asked again and again to share the homeschooling materials/methods we use to teach math. Multiple times just this week I’ve been asked for a list of my favorite math curriculum. So here they are. [click to continue…]

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Cannot Keep Track

Mom: How did your date go?

Monica (19): Fine, but I almost called Tanner “Tristan”!

Mom: Tanner? Your date was with Trevor?

Monica😲

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Righteous Sassing

Monica (18): I’m really good at sassing people in my head. I wish I could to it in real life and still be a good person.

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Easy Date

[Sam walks into my office late Friday afternoon.]

Sam: Hey, honey, do you want to go on a date?

Samson (16): Is is that easy?

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