StateU.S. (I knew that!) Representative and probable presidential candidate, Ron Paul holds three views about abortion that are self-contradictory, as taken from his book Liberty Defined:
1. Life Begins At Conception (Or at sometime afterward).
Very early pregnancies and victims of rape can be treated with the day after pill, which is nothing more than using birth control pills in a special manner. These very early pregnancies could never be policed, regardless. Such circumstances would be dealt with by each individual making his or her own moral choice.
This is not a principled position but rather pragmatic one. It is Paul’s view that killing a baby the day after conception is just birth control. He is technically correct. Killing a baby 10 minutes before it is born is also birth control, but neither practice is contraception. He is also suggesting that any murders that can’t be prevented or detected should not be “policed”. This could also apply to any other abortion, as well as the taking of lives in nursing homes or hospices, where there is no family to watch out for the victim.
2. The Federal Government Can Step in When States Permit Infanticide
If anything, the federal government has a responsibility to protect life — not grant permission to destroy it. If a state were to legalize infanticide, it could be charged with not maintaining a republican form of government, which is required by the Constitution.
3. The Federal Government Can’t Step in to Protect Unborn Children.
Of course, the Constitution says nothing about abortion, murder, manslaughter, or any other acts of violence. There are only four crimes listed in the Constitution: counterfeiting, piracy, treason, and slavery. Criminal and civil laws were deliberately left to the states.
Apparently Paul accepts a ban on states allowing the private ownership of people. But he is not creative enough or dedicated enough to the protection of unborn children to see how it is Constitutional to ban the private destruction of people.
Let’s try to reconcile his these three viewpoints.
First, he is often considered pro-life because he can articulate the moral position against abortion from the standpoint of being offensive or irrational. But his own position is no less irrational. By allowing for abortions in certain cases (rape and incest) and permitting the destruction of human beings after conception (the morning after pill), it is clear that he has left no place for a consistently rational position.
Second, by allowing for the preventing of infanticide to be in the jurisdiction of the federal government, there is no reason not to allow federal jurisdiction in abortion, unless he concedes that human beings in the womb are less than persons.
Third, as many other self-labeling pro-life politicians do, he fails at the point of implementing his viewpoint on abortion. In turn, he must begin to twist his position on abortion to fit his actions. This is exactly backwards. Perhaps Paul would be the candidate of pro-lifers, if he really understood the inconsistency of his own viewpoint.
David is currently an adjunct instructor of Composition and Speech at Marshalltown Community College in Iowa. His wife and he have also owned a business selling antique and collectible postcards on eBay since 1999. David was an activist with Operation Rescue in the early 1990s. He is a member of Trinity Presbyterian Reformed Church in Johnston, Iowa.
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