A few US states, in a desperate attempt to create obstacles, require ultrasound before abortion. Not for safety, but to show women their fetus, with a heart beating and little arms and feet.  To make women feel bad about killing such a little thing, even if it still has no functioning brain, no capacity to feel pain, no conscious will to live.

On the other hand, the same conservatives try to shield the agricultural industry, so that unconscious consumers of eggs, or hamburgers, have no awareness of the cruelty towards feeling adult animals involved in the creation of the meal. No pictures of sick caged hens on supermarket egg cartons or of movies of slaughterhouses at the butcher’s!

The new ultrasound law not only requires the medical procedure, but also requires that women know they have the option to hear a description of what is seen in the ultrasound, to receive a photograph of the ultrasound image and to view the ultrasound.
There is no exception for victims of rape or incest.
The lawsuit argues the ultrasound requirement is “unconstitutionally vague” because it doesn’t explain whether a person performing the ultrasound exam must try to force the woman to accept the envelope containing the photograph. The lawsuit also says it could violate a patient’s right to confidentiality by “exposing their private information to the risk of delivery by third parties.”
During legislative debate, supporters of the new law said they hoped the ultrasounds could dissuade women from getting an abortion by having to learn more about their pregnancies. Opponents said requiring a procedure that might not be available at a free clinic nearby will make it more difficult and costly for women to get
The Center for Reproductive Rights has challenged similar ultrasound laws in other states.


Normally, human-stupidity is in favor of increasing consciousness. Though, this is more about emotional sentimentailsm then about intellectual awareness.  We also agree with abortion foes, in that i t would be better if abortions could be avoided. If not by abstinence then responsible sexuality with diligent use of birth control. We think these abortion ultrasound movies should be shown BEFORE women have unprotected sex that gets them pregnant in the first place. Of course, consciousness raising would also require showing movies about the hardship of unwed pregnancies and child rearing.

Now, interestingly, the same conservatives who want to increase women’s consciousness about their fetuses and their abortions, often decry birth control education in school sex ed.

The anti-abortion conservatives also normally back up the meat industry who actively hides their cruel activities  from the general populace.  The average meat eater would be appalled and turn vegetarian if he were constantly reminded of all the cruelty in industrial caged animal raising and slaughtering. Peter Singer, and many TV stations were consistently denied access to filming US industrial animal farming enterprises.

The Way We Eat: Why Our Food Choices Matter by Peter Singer $25.95 157954889X (get a free sample online or on your kindle)
“the company does not allow photographs inside the barn because many people would not understand why the birds are ein a cages.”
.. textbook Contemporary Issues in Animal Agriculture … “For modern animal agriculture, the less the consumer knows about what’s happening before the meat hits the plate, the better ….   Of of the best things modern animal agriculture has going for it is that most people in the developed coutnries are several generations removed from the farm and haven’t a clue how animas are raised and processed” […] if urban meat eaters were to see the raising and processing of  industrially produced chickens, “they would not be impressed”. Many of them might even “swear off eating chicken and perhaps all meat”. […] “You’re not going to see a beef-packing plant to be transparent. They can’t. It’s so shocking to the average person”.

So why not put the meat industry to the same standards as abortions in Louisiana? Require McDonalds customers, before having a Big Mac, to watch a movie about industrial cattle raising in tiny stalls and slaughter houses. And before having a scrambled egg, make it mandatory to watch a movie about caged hens. Put drastic images on egg and beef packaging, like the gruesome lung cancer pictures on cigarette packs.  This would help getting us a population of vegans, or vegetarians. Or at least of getting more human poultry raising, with free running chicken instead of caged hens. Peter Singer isn’t even radical about vegetarianism, he would find eating happy range cattle far more acceptable then eating animals that suffered unnatural torturous confinement all life long.

If we are untroubled by boiling an egg where we would not dream of doing the same to a live adult chicken, this should tell us something about the so-called “right to life” of the unborn foetus. utilitarian.net/singer/about/20030714.htm

Peter Singer’s utilitarianism is concerned with maximizing happiness and minimizing suffering in all creatures. Young early embryos do have hands and feet but – unless one postulates a religious “soul” that science has no knowledge about – are biologically, physiologically incapable of consciousness, of will to live, and pain.  Animal livestock does have all these emotions, all life long.

This is why movies of animal suffering depict real suffering, while movies of tiny embryos are nothing but playing with women’s emotions.

One Comment

  1. Columnist says:

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    Also, animals don’t live in your belly.

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