Thursday, May 03, 2007

I'm loathe to engage in intra-dextrosphere blogwars, but I just wanted to add my bit about Dean Barnett's shots at pro-lifers (which, amazingly, seem to come as shots at John McCain, and appear to be a moral defense of the Dresden firebombing). I cannot hope to surpass Ross's, Mark Shea's (a hero of mine from years gone), or our own Alexham's (here and here). But I did want to add this:

One of the biggest dangers of respectable blogging is walking the line between being good partisans (or boosters for candidates) and good -- for lack of a more precise term -- ideologues. Put differently, if all you're getting is Wales, it doesn't always make sense to sell your soul. I therefore take issue with this:

Murder requires what those in the law refer to as a specific mens rea. That little Latin phrase in this context means you need a precise and knowing intent to kill someone in order to qualify as a murderer. The typical mother who has an abortion and the doctor who provides it have no such intent. They don’t feel they’re taking a life. I feel they’re wrong, and most of the readers of this site probably feel they’re wrong. But because they lack that specific and knowing intent, they’re not murderers.

What drives me crazy about the abortion debate, specifically on our side, is our stridency. There’s little attempt to understand the other side, and little effort to comprehend why a mother-to-be might desperately want an abortion. One of the reasons we toss around terms like “murder” is because they’ll end conversations, not begin them.
Let's just get this out of the way: If I kill a black woman, with the intent to kill her, but honestly believe that because she's black, she's not a human being, have I committed murder? And might -- just bear with me -- pro-lifers call such a thing "murder" not as a means to end debate, but rather as an expression of their honest beliefs?

The post in question is basically a long-winded way of taking a shot at one of Mitt Romney's opponents John McCain, and is apparently a long-winded way of getting there. In the process of traveling that road, it was apparently necessary to take some shots along the way.

I liked you guys so much better when you were just ballplayers.

Just because.