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Jack Sisson's Life Ethics Blog

We must find new ways through many ethical issues, especially regarding bioethics, medical ethics, and criminal justice. Jack Sisson's 'Life Ethics' blog focuses on numerous areas of concern, including the philosophical and ethical dilemmas surrounding stem-cell research, abortion, medical research, and health care.

'The Onion' logoYou probably know of the satirical "publication" The Onion, one of my favorite sites. If so, you probably think of its point of view -- understandably -- as leftist, for the most part. (Among the featured headlines for this week: "Heartbroken Bush Runs After Departing Rove's Car.")

But to its credit, The Onion isn't reluctant to poke fun at extremists on the other side of the aisle. This week's edition contains one such article, reducting ad absurdum a certain fringe belief of abortion-rights subscribers: the belief that pregnancies (and babies) are obstacles to a woman's happiness.

Headlined "Woman Overjoyed by Giant Uterine Parasite," the article's tone is one of head-scratching disbelief that the (fictitious) mother-to-be profiled might actually be happy with her future. Excerpts:
"I'm so happy!" Crowley said of the golf ball–sized, nutrient-sapping organism embedded deep in the wall of her uterus. "I was beginning to think this would never happen to me."

Crowley's condition is common and well-documented, with millions of women between the ages of 12 and 50 diagnosed every year. Studies have shown that while the disorder strikes without prejudice across racial, ethnic, and class lines, it bears a very high correlation with the consumption of alcohol at the time of infection. Although there is a low-cost daily medication available that can prevent the harmful symbiote with 99 percent efficacy, many women inexplicably choose not to use it.
Crowley has reportedly refused a simple inexpensive outpatient procedure that would completely rid her of the detrimental organism in about an hour, effectively sparing her from the host of complications that will burden her and her family for the rest of their lives.
"Just think, in a couple of months I'll be able to feel it kicking," Crowley said of the creature that will soon be writhing restlessly inside her, increasingly and disproportionately robbing her of her strength and stamina. "It's truly a miracle."

Though Crowley is otherwise healthy, the fact that she is in her late 30s makes it much more likely that the parasite has already split and multiplied within her womb.
(Read the whole thing, if you'd like.)

For the record
, other stories in this issue also bear (albeit less directly) on the importance of human life:
  • This Monster Problem Is Distracting This Town From The Real Issues: A parody of the monomaniacal zeal with which some people pursue their favorite hot buttons.
    People, people, people! Put down your torches for a second. I
    know you're all angry that, after days of bloody and terrifying
    rampage, the monster still hasn't been caught. Your outrage is
    not unjustified; however, it's misdirected... You fear a monster
    you can't see because it lurks in the shadows and strikes from
    out of nowhere. But right under your feet is the real monster:
  • Texas Executes 400th Convict (this week's Onion "poll"): Says "Jane Davidson, Secretary":
    "I commend Rick Perry for having the courage to protect his
    constituents. Well done, Governor, and please don't kill me."

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