7 April 2005

Should we be protecting unborn children?

| johnboy
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Steve Pratt has put out a media release on his planned introduction of a Crimes Amendment Bill 2005 which is intended to make it “an offence to injure or kill an unborn child through assaulting or poisoning a woman who is known to be pregnant and who, as a direct result of the offence, loses her child”.

My first reaction, in my turbo-charged super-cynicism, was that this was a back-door abortion assault.

But (in his statement at least) Mr. Pratt stresses this is not the case.

What do you lot think about this sort of thing?

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But we don’t get paid for it

Not unlike many of us!

indeed. He has a great many things to say about which he knows little

I dunno VG, older still than incompetent politicians is politicians who say one thnig while doing the opposite.

and he wouldn’t be the first to use popular sentiment to drive unpopular measures.

Another example of an MLA not knowing what exists in the law in the first place

I’ve been thinking about this.

I really can’t see how any acknowledgment of unborn children as legal entities in need of protection can be consistent with legal abortion.

Extreme acts of assault on any person should be met with extended custodial sentences.

An assault which leads to the termination of a pregnancy should fall into that category.

Do we really need this law which creates a new category of people in the “unborn”?

Its quite a can of worms, but I agree that if the proper loopholes are closed off, what’s the harm?

Someone can assault and kill an unborn child and its not considered to be human because it is in utero, even at a late stage of gestation. Even though if it were to be born at that same time, it would be premature and have a high chance of survival.

These people should face the consequences.

Disclaimer: I am 27 weeks pregnant and biased.

Just as the debate about reducing abortions is really a stalking horse for reducing womens rights, the debate about the rights of the unborn is just a stalking horse for reducing womens abortion rights.

I support the intent of the Bill if it does what it claims to do above – but the wording will have to be very careful indeed if this isn’t going to be a way of prosecuting doctors who perform abortions.

Even if Mr. Pratt says this isn’t so, that doesn’t mean it couldn’t be interpreted as such in future.

I think it is a long time coming, and support it 100%. Providing, of course, that it ISN’T affecting abortion.

Rather: does it count as poison if it doesn’t hurt the *mother*?

This is good. It doesn’t sound like it applies to the mother terminating the pregnancy, so what’s the problem? Closing the loophole Tx7 mentioned is pretty important.

The weird edge case would be aborting someone else’s baby by spiking a drink (or doing something similarly uninvasive). Would that be assault?

Probably piggy backing on the NSW response to the situation earlier this year when a guy allegedly punched a woman in the stomach and killed the child and walked away scott free

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