Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Congressman Says Abortions Should Be Banned Because Male Fetuses Masturbate

For years, there have been some compelling arguments on all sides of the nation's ongoing abortion debate, and some arguments that are, well, not so compelling.

Or at least compelling in an unusual way.

U.S. Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas has come up with the most novel argument against abortions after, say 15 weeks gestation. Some fetuses are already working off their sexual frustrations, and we shouldn't interrupt them, he essentially says.
Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas has some
novel ideas about the life of a fetus in the womb.  

"They stroke their face. If there is a male baby, they may have their hand between their legs. If they feel pleasure, why is it so hard to believe they could feel pain?"

OK, I get part of his argument. He thinks fetuses feel sensations, and abortion is a painful way for a fetus to go, in his opinion. (Experts disagree on this)

But, um, fetuses masturbate? Where do they get the idea? While in the womb, do they overhear their parents watching porn videos?  What exactly is the fetus thinking about while "freeing willy"?  It's not as if they have a whole lot of sexual experience to remember to add to their enjoyment.

And if what Burgess said were true, it opens up a whole other set of problems.

First of all, has Burgess seen sonogram videos of fetuses beating off?  Viewing children in sexual situations is basically violating child pornography laws. So is our wanking fetus an example of  child porn? Should adults face criminal charges if they see such a thing willingly? After all, I think we can all agree aggressive enforcement of anti-child pornography laws is a very, very good idea.

Some religious conservatives really, really frown on masturbation. Sex, any sex, should only be for procreation, say a  few fundamentalists. So, is our wanking fetus violating moral dictates? If so, how shall we punish him?

In  any event, I doubt the debate about whether or how to regulate abortions will go on forever. But if we must continue discussing the issue, can we just be a little less ridiculous about it?

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