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Old February 21, 2013, 02:44 PM   #46
Evan Thomas
Join Date: July 7, 2008
Location: Upper midwest
Posts: 5,182
Originally Posted by lcpiper
He was saying if the woman's claim was legitimate then abortion was acceptable, but now if her claim was false and illegitimate.
No, that's not what he says.

I can't think of a better way to get this thread shut down than to bring abortion into it, but in the statement you quote, he says very clearly that even in the "unlikely" event that a woman gets pregnant from a "legitimate" rape, abortion should not be an option: "...punishment ought to be on the rapist and not attacking the child." [My emphasis.]

He's saying pretty explicitly that if a woman gets pregnant after being raped, the chances are that it wasn't really rape, and that even if it was, abortion isn't acceptable.

What the man had such a hard time saying was that under extreme stress women frequently will not conceive.
And he should have had an even harder time saying it, because it is false.

It is, quite literally, a medieval belief.
The false belief that pregnancy can almost never result from rape was widespread for centuries. In Europe from medieval times well into the 1700s a man could use a woman's pregnancy as a legal defense, "proving" that he could not have raped her...
And the study you cited is irrelevant, because it looked only at long-term stress, not at the immediate, short-term, effects of stressful events. The participants were women who had been trying unsuccessfully to get pregnant. (And the markers they used are correlates of stress; there's no evidence of what the actual mechanism is. It's that correlation vs. causation thing again...)

(Apologies to the mods, but I'm unable to let this pass. I won't pursue it.)
Never let anything mechanical know you're in a hurry.

Last edited by Evan Thomas; February 21, 2013 at 02:53 PM.
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