The Instigator
brian_eggleston
Pro (for)
Losing
10 Points
The Contender
jjmd280
Con (against)
Winning
29 Points

Compulsory Abortion Orders should be imposed on pregnant women deemed unsuitable for motherhood

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/5/2008 Category: Society
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,600 times Debate No: 6146
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (6)
Votes (7)

 

brian_eggleston

Pro

The tragic reality is that while you need a licence to keep a dog, feral scum like Karen Matthews was allowed to give birth to child after child, even though the authorities were fully aware that she was totally unfit to be a mother.

http://www.guardian.co.uk...
http://www.timesonline.co.uk...

Thankfully, very few women are as criminally unsuitable to be a mother as Karen Matthews, but there are, nevertheless, tens of thousands of dangerously inadequate mothers in Britain that should never have been allowed to have children in the first place. The stats say it all:

* On average 1 child is killed by its parents every 10 days.
* 64,000 children are in local authority care
* 35,000 children, some not yet born, are considered to be "at risk of significant harm"

http://news.bbc.co.uk...

Most of these unsuitable mothers have some or all of the following in common:

* They have never had a job and have no intention of ever getting a job.
* They view having children as a means to obtain free housing and extra state benefits.
* They are substance abusers.
* They are not in a stable relationship and have numerous children by different fathers.
* They are poorly educated, and neglect their children's education by allowed them to play truant.
* They, or their partners, are violent and abusive towards their children.
* They allow their children to become involved in substance abuse and crime.

These factors dictate that both children will and the wider community will suffer as the result of allowing women who are unfit to be mothers to give birth with impunity.

But it is not just unfit mothers that fail children; it is the entire electorate for not insisting that a law should be introduced that would help prevent child abuse. In view of this, I would urge all British voters to lobby their local Member of Parliament and request that he or she submits a Private Member's Bill that makes provision for Compulsory Abortion Orders to be imposed on pregnant women that are deemed to be unsuitable for motherhood.

This law should make it clear to the judiciary that the potential future welfare of the unborn child and the interests of the wider society must be prevail in all cases and any consideration for the human rights of the would-be mother must not be allowed to compromise the decision to terminate a pregnancy.

Once this legislation has been passed, social services departments will, for the first time, be able to prevent an unsuitable mother's pregnancy reaching full term and thereby save a youngster from a life of misery and I therefore commend this important measure in the fight against child abuse to the House.

Thank you.
jjmd280

Con

Thank you to Brian for a timely and though provoking debate topic. The stories on Karen Matthews were heart-wrenching. Although I do not reside in the UK, I must say we have the same, if not worse statistics here in the US.

I agree with your summation of said events, but not your method of rectification. I am all for abortion - if chosen by the woman. BUT - never, NEVER if chosen by the state.

I wonder why you chose compulsory abortion as the only route to solving this worldwide problem? It is a tad extreme, to say the least. Who is to determine their unfitness? The state? That wouldn't work. Having the state deem a mother unfit would be cost-prohibitive, not to mention unfair for the mother, whom you wisely stated is most likely financially and educationally challenged anyway. How would such a woman mount a defense? Determining fitness would be near impossible in cases of first time pregnancy. (If you are including it.) Speaking of first time pregnancy, how is anyone to know UNTIL she is a mother just how unfit she is?

Your disregard for the ability for people to change is disturbing. Would someone have to meet all your criteria to be deemed unfit? Or are three enough? What if said woman is down on her luck, shacks up with her boyfriend whom is a druggie and abusive, gets on the dole, and works her way back up? Does the mother's will to change have any play in the argument? Is she branded for LIFE? Why not just sterilize her? - Less traumatic, and saves the state money on future abortions, doesn't it? She wouldn't even have to know. At the welfare office, when she is standing at a counter to complete forms, she can be exposed without her knowledge to sterilizing doses of X-radiation. - wait - I think the NAZIS had a similar idea...

"A practical procedure would consist in making the persons to be treated approach a counter where they would be asked to reply to certain questions or to fill out forms for two or three minutes. The person sitting behind the counter could work the apparatus by turning a switch which would bring two lamps into action simultaneously." (The radiations had to be transmitted from either side.)
"By installing two lamps, between 150 and 200 persons could be sterilized daily and, in consequence, with twenty installations of this type, 3,000 to 4,000 individuals could be sterilized every day." Taken from link below.

http://www.maebrussell.com...

Problem solved.

BUT -
What if this woman is Christian, or any other religion that forbids this? Her immortal soul doesn't matter to the state, now, does it? And what of the father? Does he get his cake, and get to eat it, too? Conceiving a child is a dance,(although horizontal) and it takes TWO to tango.

I have 2 better solutions, that will reap benefits for the state and the mom/child. Compulsory adoption and/or compulsory birth control. Augmented with a huge dose of education. Either way is so much more desirable, for all involved. Costly, for sure, but if your idea is the alternative, I'd much rather pay taxes to SUPPORT a child, rather than ABORT a child. A child given a chance, is a potential tax-payer, therefore repaying the state X-fold for its investment in him/her.

At least one countryman of yours has made this case -
http://www.timesonline.co.uk...

And a Dutch legislator -
http://www.bbc.co.uk...

You say,
"Once this legislation has been passed, social services departments will, for the first time, be able to prevent an unsuitable mother's pregnancy reaching full term and thereby save a youngster from a life of misery and I therefore commend this important measure in the fight against child abuse to the House."

Save a youngster from a life of misery? fight against child abuse? Easily not the best choice of words - but accurate if we only accept the either/or idea of motherhood. Orphanages would not be the best solution, but they sure beat being ripped apart inside your mom, and not having ANY chance to contribute to the world. I wonder how many children were born of unfit mothers and turned out to be caring and contributing members of society?

I know of at least one. The author of this rebuttal. Me.

Your proposed solution strikes me as far too draconian. Have we got the right to exercise pre-emptive "justice" – and could this be the first step towards a "minority report" approach to parental "precrime"?

I firmly and deeply reject the proposition, and hope my opponent can see the error of his words. Thank goodness they aren't 'WAYS' - yet.

Thank you.
Debate Round No. 1
brian_eggleston

Pro

I am indebted to my opponent for his gracious acceptance of this challenge and thank him for posting such an eloquent and ostensibly reasonable argument.

In response to my opponent's comments, I should first like to make it clear that, while the Government (state) would enact the law, a pregnant woman's suitability to become a mother would be assessed by professional social workers working under strict guidelines and would apply to the courts for an Compulsory Abortion Order (CAO) to be served in cases where allowing the pregnancy to reach full-term would place a child at risk and / or be socially undesirable. With these checks and balances in place, it would not be legally possible for the Government to decide who would and would not be subject to a CAO.

Furthermore, I would envisage that a CAO would only be granted in exceptional circumstances for first child cases, possibly only for extreme cases such as a woman addicted to drugs, living in a crackhouse that is frequented by violent criminals and who is willing to sell her body for the price of her next fix.

Please now allow me to explain the inspiration for my proposal. I was discussing Britain's underclass in general, and unsuitable mothers in particular, with some friends of mine. The consensus amongst them was that evil fat slags like Karen Matthews should all be sterilised (they were not my most intellectual friends and they had been drinking heavily, but still….) and my opponent suggested the sterilisation option in an attempt to discredit CAOs by associating them with Nazi birth control schemes. However, abortions are one-ff and do not, therefore, preclude the possibility of a woman having children in the future if her behaviour and circumstances are sufficiently improved.

My opponent then introduced two arguments, the first regarding religious objections. As Britain does not have a written constitution, no special privileges are accorded to people of faith, although their right to practice their religion (in accordance with the law) is protected under the Human Rights Act 1988.

http://www.opsi.gov.uk...

However, the right to freedom of religion would not endow a plaintiff with the legal right to refuse a CAO on the grounds of their religious beliefs, any more than it gives them the right to break any other Law of the Land.

The second argument concerned the father of the child. Ignoring the temptation to address the question of "horizontal dancing" (my opponent is clearly unfamiliar with "knee-tremblers"), the courts may decide that the child could be brought up in the father's care, if he is deemed to be a potentially responsible and stable parent.

My opponent had two alternative solutions, namely compulsory adoption and compulsory contraception. The former already exist in Britain and the second, while it has its undoubted merits, would be difficult to monitor and enforce.

Under my proposal, when social services do refer a case, the criteria the courts will use in order to make their assessment will mirror those of the Children Act 2004 and the pregnant woman (or her legal representative) must convince the court that, if she is allowed to give birth, the child will have every possible opportunity to:

- Be healthy, both mentally and physically
- Be safe from neglect, abuse and anti-social behaviour
- Enjoy, and achieve at, school
- Make a positive contribution to society
- Achieve economic well-being through employment as an adult

http://www.everychildmatters.gov.uk...

To end his debating round, my opponent resorted to an appeal to the voters' sense of compassion by implying that a child born to an unfit mother should be given a chance to become a worthwhile citizen. However, we must look beyond the emotional language he used and consider the matter dispassionately. Few of us would dispute that, even if someone did survive a childhood spent living in a crackhouse full of violent strangers with only an abusive, drug-addicted criminally-incompetent mother to rely on for support, they would be most unlikely to grow up to be some sort of paragon of virtue. If you examine the backgrounds of most murderers, rapists and child molesters, you will find that most were brought up in a dysfunctional household.

In conclusion, not only will CAO's safeguard unborn children from potential future abuse and reduce the rates of serious crimes; they will save the taxpayers significant amounts of money by reducing the numbers of women eligible for government-funded housing; income support and child-benefit payments.

Thank you.
jjmd280

Con

In rebuttal -

"In response to my opponent's comments, I should first like to make it clear that, while the Government (state) would enact the law, a pregnant woman's suitability to become a mother would be assessed by professional social workers working under strict guidelines and would apply to the courts for an Compulsory Abortion Order (CAO) to be served in cases where allowing the pregnancy to reach full-term would place a child at risk and / or be socially undesirable. With these checks and balances in place, it would not be legally possible for the Government to decide who would and would not be subject to a CAO."

I beg to differ. Strict guidelines or not, professional or not, it is not up to a Social Worker to determine a child's "SOCIAL DESIRABILITY." A child at risk, maybe, but social desirability????? Mr, Eggleston - my good sir, I am beside myself. Anyone working at the beck and call of a government order would have the goverment's interest in mind ABOVE the citizens'. We've seen laws such as these enacted in other countries - such aa Nazi Germany. And in Communist China and Tibet.
http://www.tibettruth.com...

"Furthermore, I would envisage that a CAO would only be granted in exceptional circumstances for first child cases, possibly only for extreme cases such as a woman addicted to drugs, living in a crackhouse that is frequented by violent criminals and who is willing to sell her body for the price of her next fix."

This would be near impossible to implement. Taking the child away solves the issue of this type of situation for the child. Abortion punishes the child. The state should never impose control over another's body, without the person forfeiting their rights. And as there is no right to forcefully remove parts of another's body without their consent in Western countries, well, my opponent has no leg to stand on! (FIGURATIVE language, my dear reader.)

"Please now allow me to explain the inspiration for my proposal. I was discussing Britain's underclass in general, and unsuitable mothers in particular, with some friends of mine. The consensus amongst them was that evil fat slags like Karen Matthews should all be sterilised (they were not my most intellectual friends and they had been drinking heavily, but still….) and my opponent suggested the sterilisation option in an attempt to discredit CAOs by associating them with Nazi birth control schemes. However, abortions are one-ff and do not, therefore, preclude the possibility of a woman having children in the future if her behaviour and circumstances are sufficiently improved."

Sterilisation equals Nazism and Forced abortion doesn't. Your reasoning is unique and quite dangerous, to say the least. My opponent's purpose is to punish the mother for her indiscretion and whorish ways, so he would like to see the state cut the child out. She can always have another. Why spend money on the child? What good would it be?

WOW. Parliament should henceforth deliberate in pubs!!

"My opponent then introduced two arguments, the first regarding religious objections. As Britain does not have a written constitution, no special privileges are accorded to people of faith, although their right to practice their religion (in accordance with the law) is protected under the Human Rights Act 1988.

http://www.opsi.gov.uk......

However, the right to freedom of religion would not endow a plaintiff with the legal right to refuse a CAO on the grounds of their religious beliefs, any more than it gives them the right to break any other Law of the Land."

My objection is based on US law, admittedly - I am not as familiar with British law. I concede this point. But human rights are human rights - as the UK is allowing ISLAMIC courts, it would be discriminatory to not allow the person's religion NOT to come into play in such a situation. It may not be her primary defense, but it would definitely play a part.

"The second argument concerned the father of the child. Ignoring the temptation to address the question of "horizontal dancing" (my opponent is clearly unfamiliar with "knee-tremblers"), the courts may decide that the child could be brought up in the father's care, if he is deemed to be a potentially responsible and stable parent."

Oh, I am familiar with "knee-tremblers" - I just prefer not to collapse on my back in the throes of said passion. As for my opponents point on "the Baby Daddy" - I have no issue. But a Pa that concieves in the upright position may have a problem being a "potentially responsible and stable parent." - - emphasis on STABLE. ;-)

"Under my proposal, when social services do refer a case, the criteria the courts will use in order to make their assessment will mirror those of the Children Act 2004 and the pregnant woman (or her legal representative) must convince the court that, if she is allowed to give birth, the child will have every possible opportunity to:

- Be healthy, both mentally and physically
- Be safe from neglect, abuse and anti-social behaviour
- Enjoy, and achieve at, school
- Make a positive contribution to society
- Achieve economic well-being through employment as an adult"

I applied the above to myself, and asked several friends to do the same. NOT ONE OF US had "every possible opportunity to" have more than 3 of these. I guess we aren't "socially desirable". *shudder...

But - fair enough, every child should be able to expect these - but the alternative is NOT abortion - but adoption. I say again - Abortion is punishing the child, mother and father. Adoption, contraception and education is so much more positive for all involved.

My opponent ended his last round by pointing out I appealed to emotion. He wishes you to look dispassionately at the situation. Then he resorts to predicting the future - "Few of us would dispute that, even if someone did survive a childhood spent living in a crackhouse full of violent strangers with only an abusive, drug-addicted criminally-incompetent mother to rely on for support, they would be most unlikely to grow up to be some sort of paragon of virtue. If you examine the backgrounds of most murderers, rapists and child molesters, you will find that most were brought up in a dysfunctional household."
Could the same be said of babies put up for adoption or foster parenting? I think not.
He'd rather you appeal to hatred, bias, and prejudice.

My final request of the reader is for them to place themselves into the shoes of the woman. The state imposes a CAO on you. What do you imagine your image of that state to be after this? Benevolence? Willingness to comply with the law?
Or would you be bitter, even to the point of hating the very country that is supposed to be in the business of your baby's best interests? Granted, there would be women and men that would welcome not having to take responsibility for their offspring. But they are the minority. Most would fight, and there would be no quick decisions in a case such as this.

Thank you to my opponent for this most interesting idea. But even a a Pro Choice supporter, I only support the woman's right to choose an abortion. Otherwise, NO. The only humane, supportive, and morally acceptable choice in this matter is to reject CAOs for what they are - Fascist Eugenics.

Thank you.
Debate Round No. 2
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by brian_eggleston 5 years ago
brian_eggleston
Reflecting on my opponent's first round rebuttals, I was inclined to think that compulsory abortions that mainly affect the poorest and most disadvantaged members of society are not wholly in keeping with my left-wing political principals!

But it was too late by then and I had to persevere and make life as difficult as possible for my opponent. However, Con argued humorously and intelligently and deserves the acknowledgment of the voters for this.
Posted by Derek.Gunn 5 years ago
Derek.Gunn
Brian, the ever-more-daring.
Posted by jjmd280 5 years ago
jjmd280
Okeydokey - please tell us your thoughts, and why you decided the way you did. Thanks for taking the time to consider our debate.
Posted by jjmd280 5 years ago
jjmd280
I've been looking for an opportunity to debate ya. here it is.
Posted by s0m31john 5 years ago
s0m31john
No kids for poor people, maybe if we just ignore them they'll die off.
Posted by JustCallMeTarzan 5 years ago
JustCallMeTarzan
Oh... he went there.... welcome to Brave New World.
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