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Bob Marshall Responds

By Greg L | 22 February 2010 | 13th HOD District | 49 Comments

The blogsosphere, particularly on the left side of the aisle, went into quite a frenzy today as a result of Delegate Bob Marshall’s comments at a recent press conference.  Virginia Virtucon has the scoop on Delegate Marshall’s response to the controversy, which should help clarify to those who misundersood what Marshall was talking about that indeed, Bob Marshall is not hostile to families with disabled children.  Seriously, could anyone have actually believed such complete rubbish?

“I don’t believe that disabled kids are God’s punishments, period, end of discussion,” said Marshall. “I have defended disabled kids. I was almost kicked out of the Republican caucus because I forced a vote on a bill, because autism parents did not get a vote in a subcommittee.”

. . .

Marshall cited articles in medical journals, which he claimed showed an increased rate of cerebral palsy, low birth weights and premature births among women who have had prior induced abortions.

. . .

“These are both peer-reviewed medical journals,” said Marshall. “This is not Pat Robertson, this is not the Pope, this is not some yahoo preachers in a right-wing fever swamp.”

Sometimes it seems that some really do try to go out of their way to attribute motives to Delegate Marshall that he clearly doesn’t hold.  I expect that from liberals, but I don’t from fellow Republicans.

UPDATE: Skeptical Observer points out that Bob Marshall must be doing something right, and The Virginia Conservative provides an excellent analysis of the brouhaha.

UPDATE 2: Here is the video from the press conference.  I think Delegate Marshall is getting a raw deal here and the press is mischaracterizing his statements.  Watch for yourself, and see if Delegate Marshall is being treated fairly here.

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  1. michael said on 22 Feb 2010 at 8:05 pm:
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    If the statement is true….however much it is spun later as not meant be be what it sounded like, it is still religious politcal oppression on individual rights to choose…I’m really not hearing something that Christ would ever say or advocate in this debate over abortion…

    Sometimes things are just to0 important to not put my view on both blogs so I apologize for the repeat…

    Idiots….this is so wrong it doesn’t deserve my time…but I can’t let such lunacy go unanswered… I’m a Christian, so Christians in the Republican Party….LISTEN UP!!!!…

    Bob Marshall you need to go read the Bible a little closer…No-where in it, can I find a single scripture that says “God says disabled children are Gods punishment to women who had an abortion…” This is what drives me unbelieveably angry at the Republican Party, almost as angry as I am at the Democratic party, for such blatant ignorance in how parties get their most incredibly stupid people elected…to follow the most incredibly stupid political agendas of greed, ethnic racism, religious oppression, and party hatred of humans being human…

    This is why we are going to have a religious war someday, and this is why religious people who are running the Republican party are so dangerously undermining Democracy and replacing it with Religious autocracy…idiots, idiots, idiots…

    Along this same theme…I owe an answer to Wolverine whose comments and intellect I highly respect, in this otherwise wayward group of bloggers from both the left and the right extremes…


    Michael —Just out of curiosity, how would you handle this one? One of my second cousins on my mother’s side just died a couple of years ago. I found out that he was a lifetime Free Mason and a very active one. He was also a lifetime member of an evangelical Baptist church and a very devout member at that. Moreover, before he retired he was a high-level executive in a major oil company. How would this guy fit into your theory?

    Bob Marshall is just one example of a evangelical extremist, but an example of one who has mixed church and state and can’t tell the difference, along with many who attend the tea party…

    Your cousin fits this way…It is possible to be a free-mason, a man of good character (unlike Bob Marshall), and be an evangelical Christian. Mason’s believe in seperation of church and state…Mason’s believe in religious tolerance and Mason’s can be religious people (most are and were). The difference between a Liberator Christian (which I am), and Bob Marshall (who is an idiot and dangerous Obligation Keeper Christian), is that Obligation Keepers, want the Levitican Law of the old testament, imposed on modern people by use of goverment, the Republican Party and tea party platform as a religious oppression mechanism, full of religious hatred and anger at all things not religious, just like the chirch has always done historically when led by extremist popes, criminals, and greedy politicians posing as church diocese. They are kind of like Muslim extremists, who use the party platform of their own country to oppress the religious freedom and religious tolerance needs of the people and want the law of Mohammad (also derived from levitican old testament law), imposed on modern people…using political force, and death if necessary….

    Both of these institutions (most obligation keepers are Catholics, but not all, many are charasmatic and evangelical protestants) are oppressive in history. Historically, the Free Masons saw the results of that oppression and the impact it had on wealth and liberty, and happiness, and so mandated that Mason ideology would follow the Democratic concepts of the Greeks, tolerate religious freedoms and religious differences as long as NO RELIGION had control of the government and political control over the rights of individuals to choose for themselves, the pursuit of life, liberty and freedom, all of which are basic and fundamental principles on which this country was founded and for which we fought a revolutionary war to free ourselves from (British, Catholic, Church of England OPPRESSION).

    Free Masons are also free market advocates, believe that commoners (the people) have a right to start business, do not have the right to wealth as a function of privilige by race or ethnicity, or sex, or royal birth, and can invest in banking and trade that makes the merchant as wealthy as the royaly, by abolishing slavery and serfdom, which monarchies, class, and cast systems politically created, protected by law, and imposed as oppressive political systems on others. The Democracy of the Free Masons abolished such oppressive states and oppressive religious laws in the forming of this nation. (Think of our return to priviliged, 8a, protected class political systems that give privilige by race and ethnicity and sex, and Hindu class structures that keep people oppressed and poor as slaves and serfs by birth)…

    So your cousin could be all of these, believe in God, seperate church and state, and advocate for free market…and not ever be close to the modern day tea party Republican obligation keeping evangelistic political animal that wants to punish women for having abortions, even when not one word of abortion is mentioned in one word of scripture as a sin specifically identified by God as one that would prevent you from getting into heaven…

    Only idiots and people who will be punished by God later for misunderstanding God’s word will be punished for hurting people and keeping people living in oppressive misery, because they cannot separate their personal relationship with God (if they even have one), from the fear and hatred they have of other’s political views and morals, which may be decided by God on a case by case basis to be very different for each according to his individual needs and circumstances….

    A liberator Christian understands these permissions and these rights, and fundamental concepts of Democracy, as an individual right and permission that comes directly from personal conversation with God and only from God’s personal answer, not from the government…or the Republican party….or the people attending a tea party… A Liberator Christian is a Liberator of oppressive states through the concept of individual rights and democracy.

    This country is going to hell until somebody learns to pay attention to want is scripture and what is not, what is freedom and what is not and what is Democracy and what is not…

    The Masons had it right…Republicans and Democrats represent the extreme socialist, racist, oppressive views, and have it all wrong…that makes them both extremely dangerous to Democracy…

    Tell me Christians, or those of you who think you are Christian…which concept is more Christ-like? Liberation from oppression or obligation keeping of levitican law?

  2. Greg L said on 22 Feb 2010 at 8:18 pm:
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    Michael, I think you are way off base ascribing motives, intentions and allegiances to a group of Christians you quite obviously don’t understand very well.

    Why would it be wrong for someone’s moral views to be informed by Scripture, instead of some ephemeral and ever-changing notion of what is acceptable to society? Those who have held such scriptural beliefs were the core of the abolitionist movement, the core of the civil rights movement, and now are the core of the movement to end the murder of pre-born babies. Much of what you rightly celebrate as the best America has done in our history is a result of Christians applying their understanding of morality, as informed by Scripture, to their political outlook and actions.

    Now that you don’t seem as comfortable in the present with applied Biblical principles as arguments used in the past, you want to seemingly tar believers as a negative aspect of modern society. That’s been done before, but not usually in a way that history reflected very kindly upon.

    I’m not sure what you consider to be an “obligation keeper”, but if that means people who feel an obligation to lead a God-pleasing life as best as their sinful nature allows, well, you better consider me one of those. I’ll always fall short of keeping my obligations to the Lord, but darned if I won’t try my best to do so.

  3. local gop said on 22 Feb 2010 at 8:29 pm:
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    “Those who have held such scriptural beliefs were the core of the abolitionist movement, the core of the civil rights movement”
    hahahahahahahahahaha–Yes because the Bible belt was really pro civil rights….thats funny. Church remains the most segregated place in America, you’re statements are grossly mis informed.
    There is a difference between going to church and following the Bible, and building government policy on the Bible. Thats why we have separation of church and state, for this reason right here.
    You want to “lead a God-pleasing life as best as their sinful nature allows” thats fine, knock yourself, BUT DONT FORCE ME TO BY USING THE GOVERNMENT TO IMPOSE YOUR BELIEFS ON ME. America is not a theocracy, it is a democracy.

  4. Greg L said on 22 Feb 2010 at 8:43 pm:
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    local gop, you really ought to go to Church sometime so you could disabuse yourself of such ridiculous notions.

    By the way, we don’t actually have “separation of church and state”, we have “freedom of religion” in this country. Don’t confuse a private letter that Jefferson wrote with the First Amendment. It just makes you look less informed than you probably are.

  5. michael said on 22 Feb 2010 at 8:48 pm:
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    Greg, none of my comments are directed at you personally…I believe you will understand my answer, my objection, and belief about this and other issues the closer you read the Bible, and the less political you become…
    I may have been where you are, I don’t know…but I am not going to impose my beliefs on your beliefs, or claim to know where you are, and where you should go, only you and God know that…

    I am only voicing what I believe is the way I see scripture to me and my life and others around me affected by my life..

    This is my fundamental objection to such abortion concepts…when levitican law creates misery and oppression as it has often in history…Christ railed against it…

    Christ followed a principle of Democracy based on individual need to have protection from government and religious oppression (he often opposed levitican law when it left the individual in personal misery)…

    I honestly don’t know what he would have done about abortion, but I find scripture and get feedback from prayer to side with the women who do not make this choice lightly, but need to make that choice for their personal life, liberty or happiness. I certainly believe that decision is up to each woman’s personal conversation with God and not up to Bob Marshall, religious fanaticism or the politically religious oppressive people currently in charge of the Republican party….I’m not too happy with the racism of the Democratic party either, also something I believe Christ would not have approved of…

    I write what I write based on my personal beliefs and my own prayer on what is right and what is not, what is scriptural and what is not…You must do the same, and it may not be the same as my belief and my conviction, because it will be for you and not for me, likely based on your personal interaction’s with God…

  6. michael said on 22 Feb 2010 at 8:53 pm:
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    I also have seen Christian, whether it be abortion, liberty, religious tolerance, racisim, or greed, create oppression and misery through their hatred in the name of God…this does not come from scripture… these by my definition are the obligation keepers and I can spot them a mile away…they advocate for oppressive religious law through government.

    They rarely focus inward…and they are almost always involved in politics…

    [Ed note: I’d respond in a comment here, but it would end up quite a ways down the list. What you’re referring to here is sick and twisted, but lumping abortion in this list, which is pretty darned clearly proscribed by scripture seriously undermines your argument and makes it somewhat inane. Please don’t treat the Bible as a buffet, where you pick and choose what to believe. I’ll understand fallibility in following or even understanding it, but this seems borderline willful misunderstanding. “Oppressive religious law?” Please.]

  7. local gop said on 22 Feb 2010 at 8:55 pm:
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    Who said anything about the 1st amendment? What exactly are you insinuating by that comment? That the United States government has a right to impose biblical morals on the people? Really? Please come out and finally say that is what you want to happen….cause we all know it to be true….

  8. Greg L said on 22 Feb 2010 at 9:15 pm:
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    local gop, Christans have a right to vote their moral conscience as informed by scripture to support laws and elected officials that share their beliefs. That collective opinion, in a democracy, can shape the laws we have.

    You’re the one bringing in the fallacy argument of “separation of church and state”. You know that’s not in the Constitution or any of our laws. It’s simply the opinion of one man shared in a letter with a Baptist society. Why bring it up? It’s an irrelevant argument.

  9. Greg L said on 22 Feb 2010 at 9:24 pm:
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    Michael, when you throw around unfamiliar labels like “obligation keeper”, which appear to apply in the context in which you spoke to anyone who tries to lead a God-pleasing life, you bet I’m going to figure that label applies to me. Since I support much of what Delegate Bob Marshall does, I can’t escape thinking you’re taking a swipe at me and a lot of the friends I have here who share my beliefs.

    Just for clarification, Christ did not throw out God’s laws. He just redeemed us from the sins of breaking them that result from our sinful nature.

    If God’s laws were abolished, would there really be much value in redemption? Redemption only makes sense in the context of our breaking God’s laws, otherwise we wouldn’t need it. Christ’s suffering and death on the cross would be pretty meaningless.

    The ceremonial laws no longer apply, as evidenced by the tearing of the temple curtain in two when Christ died. The Ten Commandments and the rest of God’s moral laws are still something we are expected to follow, even if we can’t keep them perfectly. We follow them as a thank offering for the sacrifice of Jesus, as a way of doing our best to follow the law after being forgiven for our sins, out of love for God, and knowing that our imperfect attempts to keep those laws will be forgiven through our faith and the grace of God.

  10. local gop said on 22 Feb 2010 at 9:25 pm:
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    Vote how you want, but dont impose your beliefs on me through legislation. That is what anti abortion laws are, a religious argument, nothing more, nothing less.
    And there are dozens of Supreme Court cases that have established the legal precedence of separation of church and state. the treaty of tripoli which was ratified by the senate also clearly states the united states is not a christian nation. the constitution states that politicians cannot be given a religious test to run for office. To say that separation doesnt exist is a gross oversimplification of the truth.
    And i also find it laughable that you downplay TJ’s opinion whn is suits you and praise it when it suits you. He was the author of the declaration of independence, the constitution, and was the president. he’s not just ‘one man.’ I’ll be sure to remind you of that next time you try to use jeffersons ‘opinions’ to justify anything. Like the tea party for example, the whole watering the tree of liberty with blood thing, yeah thats just ‘one mans’ opinion….doesnt really matter right??

  11. Greg L said on 22 Feb 2010 at 9:35 pm:
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    “Don’t impose your beliefs on me through legislation”

    Gosh, excuse me for potentially misunderstanding, but isn’t that the definition of Democracy? Or does a minority have the right to veto legislation in this country, even if it is constitutional?

    By that definition, perhaps we should revisit the murder statutes in Virginia. Maybe there’s some constituency that thinks a right to conduct human sacrifice is being unjustly infringed because a majority “imposed their beliefs through legislation.” Perhaps we shouldn’t have any laws, since they’re the oppression of the majority on a minority in every instance.

    C’mon, you can do better than that.

  12. local gop said on 22 Feb 2010 at 9:41 pm:
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    Smoking is a sin….so then by your logic smoking should be banned, right?
    So if Muslims gain a majority control on Congress they can impose Muslim values on America? Is that ok with you?
    We have protections in place for a reason, this is one such case. Let me rephrase it to make it easier for you….using the federal government to impose religious laws on people is unconstitutional and wrong. There, easier?

  13. local gop said on 22 Feb 2010 at 9:44 pm:
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    the difference here is that there is no argument against abortion that isnt religious….and laws that can only be justified by looking through a religious scope are laws that are not fit to be passed. laws against murder can be easily justified even when christianity (or any religion) didnt exist.
    In fact, WAY before jesus was born, it was illegal to murder.

  14. Greg L said on 22 Feb 2010 at 10:22 pm:
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    Actually, if you’re going to apply scientific principle to the definition of life, you have to state that it begins at conception. No other definition meets any scientifically valid criteria. There’s a host of reasons to believe that abortion is plainly murder, and not all of them have to be rooted in religious faith.

  15. Patty said on 22 Feb 2010 at 10:41 pm:
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    local gop,

    First of all Jesus existed before the creation (John 17:5, John 8:56-58). In fact through Jesus all things were created (Colossians 1:16)

    Let’s use our brains. It is a fact that all religions contradict each other even the religions of humanism and atheism. Only one can be true. Jesus declared Himself to be the truth (John 14:6).

    I would surely like to see our laws reflect truth.

    To look deeper at your statements, you can not possibly justify laws against murder without borrowing from the Bible. You have no perfect authority to appeal to. If you want to try a futile attempt to appeal to man’s reason then what makes your opinion better than anyone else’s? Are you absolutely perfect in every way? By what authority do you make your case? Your own? And what makes you better than anyone else? Are you perfect in knowlege, wisdom and power? Can you be everywhere present? Are you self existing with no beginning or end? Do you exist outside of time or are you bound by it?

    By the way everyone has a belief system (as you would say religion) even you. You can not live your life without a belief system. It is impossible.

    God set it up that way.

  16. local gop said on 22 Feb 2010 at 10:56 pm:
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    You exhibit the classic Christian argument, ‘its that way because the Bible says so.’–Sorry, but this is not the way of the United States. We do not derive legal authority from the Bible or any religion at all. Not all belief systems are religious, at all. If shows your narrow view when you say things like that. This is not a theocratical government and though you may think it is a Christian nation, the United States Senate says otherwise. We are a country and government free from religion and will remain that way. No amount of bible quiting will change that. give it a rest please.
    “you can not possibly justify laws against murder without borrowing from the Bible ”
    Really? So in nations like Saudi Arabia (an islamic theocracy), where it is illegal to murder, it is because Jesus says so? I am really trying to not laugh right now. think for yourself please.
    Like I said, have your own opinions, go out and preach what ever you want, like Jim Jones did, but do not use the federal government to impose your teachings on me.

  17. Tobias Jodter said on 22 Feb 2010 at 11:05 pm:
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    We are already living in a post-Christian society in the US and thanks to the hate-filled intolerance of anti-religious bigots like michael, Christians are only a generation or two from becoming an officially persecuted minority in the US.

    The goal of such bigots is not religious freedom but the total and complete sanitization of any Christian expression in the public domain and eventually the elimination of privately held inadmissible points of view.

    It is true that an insignificant minority of Christians have visions of a Theocratic Government in the US - but a) it’s a small small number of people and please consider that most Christians do not hold this type of view, even conservative Christians and b) it’s a pipe dream - it will never happen. The battle has been lost - so I say to you hysterical hate-mongers of fear that are sucking their thumbs in the fetal position under their desks at the mention of the Religious Right - RELAX, you have already won the war.

    Yes, you may lose a few battles yet, here and there, but they will only be Pyrrhic victories for your hated enemy - the right-wing Taliban Christians. I mean, really, my kids aren’t even allowed to sing Christmas Carols in school so why should you be afraid of us Christians?

    Be happy, your grandchildren will have the privilege of feeding my grandchildren to the lions…

    Have a nice evening.

  18. Greg L said on 23 Feb 2010 at 1:36 am:
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    “local gop” said “We are a country and government free from religion and will remain that way.”

    My, how we have changed since the founding of this nation to have people honestly believe that. Such an opinion must make it difficult to understand the preamble to the Declaration of Independence.

    Life, liberty and property will not long survive when separated from being the endowment of our creator, and subjected to the vicissitudes of contemporary public opinion. While people generally get wiser with age, apparently nations do not. This nation certainly isn’t displaying any growing wisdom when our progeny don’t understand the fundamental nature of the government we founded.

    We are in deep trouble. It’s time to watch “Idiocracy” again to understand what’s coming, and know what to prepare for.

  19. Mom to Many said on 23 Feb 2010 at 8:50 am:
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    “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you” I believe God said that.

    Freemasons, please, what a group of Catholic haters and bashers they are, as we see by previous rants they are alive and well still, do a little research into those folks and then we will talk.

    Bob’s remark is being used by the lefty loons to bash him, his point is correct and backed by medical evidence that first pregnacy abortions cause problems later on - why keep sticking up for a practice that is murder?

  20. Groveton said on 23 Feb 2010 at 8:51 am:
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    This is what the dipstick actually said:

    “The number of children who are born subsequent to a first abortion with handicaps has increased dramatically. Why? Because when you abort the first born of any, nature takes its vengeance on the subsequent children. In the Old Testament, the first born of every being, animal and man, was dedicated to the Lord. There’s a special punishment Christians would suggest.”

    He made the remarks while talking about de-funding Planned Parenthood. He was speaking on a topic of state-wide importance as a legislator.

    Pretty stupid.

    GregL’s “cut and paste” portrayal of Marshall’s explanation would lead you to believe that Marshall was clearly discussing medical statistics and that the statistics had been proven true by peer reviewed journals. In fact, he was putting forth his own extreme religious views in a clumsy attempt to criticize abortion. Unfortunately, his “mumbledy - peg” statement sounded to most people like an attack on either children with disabilities or their parents.

    Perhaps Mr. Marshall would be well advised to communicate through writing rather than speaking. In this, he would have good company. Thomas Jefferson was painfully shy, stuttered and was never even an average orator. His writing, on the other hand, was world class. Unlike Mr. Marshall, Mr. Jefferson had sense enougth to understand his limitations.

    In other words, “Marshall! Just shut up!”.

  21. Conservatives Worst Nightmare said on 23 Feb 2010 at 10:15 am:
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    Ron White says it best about Mr. Marshall’s remarks, “You can’t fix stupid.”

  22. Jeff Hunter said on 23 Feb 2010 at 11:39 am:
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    Let’s see if we have this straight . . . Bob Marshall uses clumsy theological language to suggest that abortions may increase the chances of birth defects in subsequent children, which is supported by scientific studies, and he’s a “stupid” “dipstick” “evangelical extremist”. Yet Barak Obama says the following:

    “I’ve got two daughters. 9 years old and 6 years old. I am
    going to teach them first of all about values and morals.
    But if they make a mistake, I don’t want them punished
    with a baby.”

    and he’s a thoughtful pragmatist?

  23. ... said on 23 Feb 2010 at 1:28 pm:
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    If it weren’t for double standards, Dems would have none at all.

  24. local gop said on 23 Feb 2010 at 3:02 pm:
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    go be dramatic and water the tree with blood somewhere where people will buy into it. your doomsday predictions are right wing fear mongering drivel that gets us no where. as the treaty of tripoli clearly states, we are not a christian nation, we are a secular nation. that doesnt mean that religion doesnt exist, but that the government doesnt operate off of some religious right or divine purpose.

  25. Greg L said on 23 Feb 2010 at 3:31 pm:
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    “right win fear mongering” somehow seems strange coming from someone using “local gop” as a moniker. Reminds me of someone who referred to herself as “Compassionate Conservative” that nevertheless is hip deep in the illegal alien lobby and an admitted Obama supporter.

    I’ll just remember the “We are a country and government free from religion and will remain that way” line from you and leave it at that. I figure that is a pretty clear statement of belief regardless of whether you choose to argue that a snippet of the peace treaty to end the Barbary War somehow nullified broad swaths of the Declaration of Independence.

    Liberalism is once again proven to be a mental disorder.

  26. ... said on 23 Feb 2010 at 3:32 pm:
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    That, folks, is what’s wrong with the “local gop”.

  27. local gop said on 23 Feb 2010 at 7:34 pm:
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    Charles Darwin also said that a ‘creator’ was the reason behind the existence of the earth. he was none the less opposed to creationism….unfortunately, you cannot seem to grasp the simple fact that things aren’t black and white, there is a lot of grey area….

  28. Patty said on 23 Feb 2010 at 9:35 pm:
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    local gop,

    It is impossible to have a serious discussion with someone who is totally ignorant of history and government, especially the founding of this country. It is a fact that this country was founded on Christian principles. Even your liberal buddy, President Obama, has acknowleged that. It is even in his book. Most of the founding fathers were active Christians. Most of them went to seminary. They understood the spiritual nature of man and that he is prone to evil and that even Christians can succumb to temptation. They knew that: “The human heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick….” Jermiah 17:9. That is why we have different branches of government with a system of checks and balances so that no one branch of government can have total control. Did you attend history and government classes in school?

    Belief systems are a religion. Look up religion in the dictionary. Here I will help you: religion, n, 4: a cause, principle, or system of beliefs held to with ardor and faith. Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Tenth Edition.

    As far as Islam goes you again have failed in history. Muhammad the founder of Islam was born in 570 A.D. (Latin for the year of our Lord). Judaism and Christianity were well established before he came on the scene. He borrowed quite a bit and twisted truth.

    The real reason you’re throwing your comments at me is that you are avoiding my questions. You’ve committed a Red Herring fallacy and an Ad Hominem attack (i.e. Jim Jones). You can not answer my questions because you haven’t any good answers.

    God made this world. He set up the physical laws and moral laws. If they are violated there are consequences. He is truth. I would want the laws to reflect truth.

    I would rather follow a perfect God than an imperfect fallible man. Those are really the only two choices available.

    You say you wouldn’t want my beliefs legislated on you. Whose beliefs do you want, yours? Are you perfect? Do you know all things? Do you know what will happen tomorrow or one hundred years from now? Can you determine what people are thinking in their minds? Can you heal people by your word? Can you raise the dead? Can you? And please answer the questions.

  29. Alexandrian said on 23 Feb 2010 at 10:24 pm:
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    There are 34,276 ways to speak out against abortion.

    Then there is Bob Marshalls way.

    shall we here at bvbl agree that Bob could have done better????

  30. Jeez said on 23 Feb 2010 at 11:54 pm:
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    Way to wage the good fight, Local GOP. Greg L is always at his weakest when he talks about religion and history.

    He says that people following scripture were at the core of the relatively short-lived abolition movement. But he doesn’t mention that this “core” consisted of religious dissenters who had to overcome centuries of support for slavery by people who used scripture as their justification for it. He says people using scripture were at the core of the Civil Rights movement. But again, he ignores that when they emerged they were fighting a much larger group of people who for two hundred years had used scripture as the basis for opposing civil rights. He doesn’t seem to understand that the fundamental premise of separation of church and state is that without it freedom of religion is impossible. He doesn’t seem to recognize that there are plenty of churches where what you say is right on–how quickly he forgets Obama’s Jeremiah Wright. And he shows a fundamental misunderstanding of our democracy, which has built-in protections for the rights of the minority precisely to avoid the potential tyranny of majority rule. Greg either has only an elementary school understanding of the subjects or has willfully chosen to cherry-pick his facts or take them out of context to support his point.

    As for Bob Marshall, the comment is no surprise, and it is not the first of this type he has made. I don’t believe that he meant to disparage disabled children, but I am very confident that he considers them to be the penalty of a vengeful God. He is a right-wing, religious ideologue who like Robertson, Dobson, and our old local friend Steve Chapman, would, if they could, impose the implications of their own particular religious beliefs on all of us. Thankfully, our founding fathers, mindful of Europe’s religious wars, gave us some protections from these folks. But those protections are constantly under assault, including on this blog, it appears. So keep up the good work Local GOP. If you go down, so eventually does our party.

    Patty, which particular Christian path to salvation do you subscribe to? The one at Patrick Henry College? The Catholic one? Some other one? Many of them are mutually exclusive you know. Or, I am guessing, you don’t.

  31. local gop said on 24 Feb 2010 at 1:32 am:
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    Im ignoring your ‘questions’ and ‘claims’ because NO ONE can have a logical fact based debate with a person that quotes the Bible as an absolute truth. When I offer a counter point, you will dig into the Bible and say “God says you are wrong.” Do you even know where the Bible came from? If you did, maybe you wouldnt be so quick to use it as a piece of evidence in a debate. I can’t argue against religious people because you have a belief that I dont share. You think you are right just as much as I think I am right. Unfortunately, I dont have the luxury of chocking up claims to a God that seems to always have my back. Heck, I wish I could say “I’m right because God says so.” But I cannot, because I believe something differently from you. I can present the most perfect logical and fact based argument that it irrefutable. All you have to do in your mind to refute it is to say “God says you are wrong.” I cant question God, because, well, for obvious reasons. God doesnt post on BVBL, he doesnt call me up on the phone. In fact, the only thing that exists that is even remotely close to the word of God is the Bible. A book that was translated hundreds of times over thousands of years. A book that was assembled by a council of men for political purposes. Sorry, that doesnt carry much credibility in my opinion. But despite these historical facts, you can just say “God says you are wrong.” So no, I will not waste my time trying to have a logical fact based discussion with you because after all, all you have to say is “God says so.”
    Here is a piece of advice, look into all the hundreds of times the Bible contradicts itself. You’d be amazed by what you find. You will discover that it is IMPOSSIBLE for the Bible th be 100% truth because one part says that the other wrong.

  32. Greg L said on 24 Feb 2010 at 1:56 am:
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    You could have just left this as people having differing opinions and beliefs and there’s a degree of tolerance we should exhibit towards each other, but you just felt compelled to start attacking the Bible and believers. Not too impressive, and it kind of undercuts many of your arguments. I suppose the “inclusiveness” you demand has it’s limits, or perhaps special qualifications that a lot of people aren’t going to be able to meet. Maybe agnostic or atheist democrats will, but conservative Christians apparently will not.

    During a recent Rush Limbaugh program Rush said that self-described “moderates” attack conservatives far more than they do Democrats in reference to John McCain’s recent attacks against J. D. Hayworth compared to the way McCain laid over and played dead when running against Obama. I wasn’t quite sold on that idea until just now, when “local gop” claiming to be a “moderate” Republican, but more frequently toeing a pretty darned liberal political line typical of Democrats decided it was time to attack Christians and their faith. As I’ve concluded at other times on other subjects, I suppose Rush is right.

    “local gop”, I really hope that the scales fall off your eyes some day. Faith is a unique comfort during troubling times and a real source of joy when times are good. I’d love to see you enjoy that. I’d really like to see you as happy with life as some of my Christian friends like Patty who can easily find comfort and peace, even in tough times and when faced with an uncertain future.

    Otherwise life can be a pretty lonely journey.

  33. local gop said on 24 Feb 2010 at 3:07 am:
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    What about my statement to Patty is an ‘attack’? having a different opinion isnt an attack, its a critique. having faith is one thing, using that faith as a reason behind enacting public policy in a secular country (whether or not you choose to recognize it, we are) is another. i am against the latter. believe what you want, have faith in what you want, but dont get offended when i have a problem with you using the government to impose your faith onto me (abortion policy in particular). out of my grade school education (k-12) i spent 12 years in christian schools, both in this country and in great britian. i can quote the bible like everyone else can, and if i choose, i can use it tpo back up my arguments like everyone else can. but i dont want my religion dragged into the public square as justification for the infringement of the rights of others. i am willing to recognize the faults of the bible and what i was taught as a child. being a republican isnt about being christian or pro life, its about working within a party system and getting like minded (notice i didnt say identically minded) individuals elected to office. thats what the party system is around for. i am happy, i dont need religion to be happy. i choose to not subscribe to the beliefs i was taught as a child because i saw first hand how intolerant people with those beliefs are to contrary opinions. because of my experiences, i have the opinions i have. i didnt like it when i had religion and christianity shoved down my throat in school by teachers. i know how that feels and i sympathize with those who see that same thing happening to them with regards to religious based pro life arguments, they see a religious policy being forced on them and its wrong. i dont want to live in a country that forces people to make the moral decision all the time. like i said earlier, smoking is a sin as outlined in the bible because it desecrates the temple (the body), but you defend smoking rights because you believe in the rights of the people. the same for me and abortion, i defend it because i see it as right for the people. would i want to have one? would i encourage another person to have one? no to both. but that is not my decision to make and it is especially not a governments decision to make. thats not to say that all laws that essentially are based on morals are wrong, but because of the high level of conflict between sects of society over abortion, the beginning of life, the point at which an embryo becomes life, etc, etc, etc, the government doesnt have the right to side with a small portion of the population (18% th be exact) and say that their morals are better than everyone else’s. its not bashing religion, its not an attack. my view is actually heavily in ethics and morals. i dont view it as ethical and moral to force people to make ethical and moral choices, neither did Jesus or God. if they did, we would all be christians because then we would all be saved. but He gave us free will and the ability to make our own choices, the government should do the same.

    What gives me faith in america and humanity are the stories that i hear about success, about people coming to america with $50 in their pockets and making something of themselves. that is what this country was founded upon, the principle that you can make something of yourself. yes, the founding fathers (and all the brits for that matter) were christians. all the founding fathers prayed before meetings of the constitutional convention. i can go on and on about the religious heritage of this country. i can also go on and on about the debate over whether or not they should have prayed at the conventions. or the fact that jefferson would not issue religious proclamations as President (nor would Madison i believe). i could also talk about the immense political pressure that jefferson brought to force the separation clause to appear in the bill of rights. we can go back and forth forever. what doesnt change though is the fact that the founding fathers came to this country to escape religious oppression. a religious oppression that was brought about under the guise of ‘its the moral thing to do.’ just like pro life policy ‘its the moral thing to do.’ you may believe that 100%, and thats fine. go out and lobby for it, go and preach it, go out and raise awareness for it. but dont expect the government to side with you because that is simply the government choosing your religious views over the views of others and is establishing a law respecting a religion. its a dangerous slope to get on. if they do that, then whats to stop them from forcing women to wear hijabs? after all its the ‘moral’ thing to do according to islam. of whats to stop them from banning the slaughter of cows? after all its the ‘moral’ thing to do according to hindus. i can name dozens of things that are moral according to dozens of religions, but the government doesnt have a right to cherry pick them and impose laws that respect them. you, as a christian, would say that life morally begins at conception. i as a non christian would say that life begins at the first breath. another person would say that life begins when the heart starts beating. yet another would say that it begins when the brain waves begin. what gives the government of the people, by the people, and for the people the right to side with any of us over the other? in fact, in this scenario, if a vote were taken, it would be 3:1, 3 against and 1 for your definition.

    Basically, the government doesnt have the right to jump in the middle of an intense philosophical debate that has transcended generations to no avail. it isnt simply about abortions, it impacts so much more than that. I found this answer and its pretty close to accurate in my book:

    “The question of when a human life begins is a profoundly intricate one, with widespread implications, ranging from abortion rights to stem cell research and beyond. A key point in the debate rests on the way in which we choose to define the concepts of humanity, life, and human life. What does it mean to be alive? What does it mean to be human? Is a zygote or an embryo alive? Is a zygote or an embryo a human being? These are intricate philosophical questions that often incite intense debate, for their answers are used as evidence in the answers to questions about the moral status of a zygote, embryo or fetus. The question of when human life begins has been pondered throughout history and in a multitude of cultural contexts. The “answer” is fluid, in that it has been changing throughout history, because any answer about when human life begins is deeply integrated with the beliefs, values and social constructs of the community or individual that drew the conclusion. Throughout history there have been several “answers” to the question of when human life begins, but the only consistency among the answers is that they are always changing as social contexts change, religious morals fluctuate, or new knowledge about the process of embryo development is obtained.”

    An issue like the one spelled out above is none of the governments business to get involved in, at all.

  34. Greg L said on 24 Feb 2010 at 11:38 am:
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    Attacking her, and my faith isn’t going to win you a lot of friends here. Honestly, if you want to argue that Christians are deluded fools who take mythology too seriously, you probably could pick a better venue.

    As for the beginning of life, I think there are a lot of folks who see a pretty simple answer here — that life begins at conception, and that answer makes a ton of sense from a scientific standpoint. It is the one and only time in human development where the genetic composition of a human being is completed.

    As for whether government should be involved in defining when life deserves legal protection, well, that bus left the station long ago. It’s entirely appropriate for government to protect life, and liberty, and the pursuit of happiness as well. It is pretty much a core reason why governments are instituted among men in the first place, to paraphrase.

    I suppose you’re more of a “living document” person. I’m not. The Constitution and our founding documents to me are not at all living, or perhaps more elegantly stated, enduring.

  35. local gop said on 24 Feb 2010 at 12:32 pm:
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    there you go again… accusing me of attacking. saying i disagree isnt an attack.

    and if you cannot recognize the difference between a living breathing 50 year old human and a zygote then i’m sorry for you.

  36. Big Dog said on 24 Feb 2010 at 1:51 pm:
    Flag comment

    In fairness to Delegate Marshall, he isn’t the first elected official
    to seek to interpret the will of God. Lincoln, in his Second Inaugural,
    opined that the “war was God’s punishment on both North
    and South” for the evil of slavery.

  37. Jeff Hunter said on 24 Feb 2010 at 3:06 pm:
    Flag comment

    local gop: “if you cannot recognize the difference between a living breathing 50 year old human and a zygote then i’m sorry for you”

    Other than being 30 lbs. overweight and having a dyspeptic disposition exactly what are the differences that makes a zygote something other than a Human Being? At what point in the human gestational process does the zygote receive the necessary characteristics of a Human Being according to your definition?

  38. local gop said on 24 Feb 2010 at 4:21 pm:
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    Really?? If you cannot figure that out on your own you have some bigger problems. Here’s a start:

    1) One has a moral compass, the other does not.

    2) One has values and ethics, the other does not.

    3) One has the ability to think, the other does not.

    4) One can survive on it’s own, the other cannot.

    5) One has consciousness, the other does not.

    6) One can provide for itself, the other cannot.

    7) One has the ability to perform analytical thinking and utilizes higher brain functions, the other does not.

    8) One can breath, the other cannot.

    9) One has a heartbeat, the other does not.

    10) One has a brain wave, the other does not.

    11) One has memory retention, the other does not.

    I can go on if you like.

    The logic that you employ would also state that there is no difference between a 3 year old and a 30 year old. Thats utterly absurd.

    My PERSONAL definition is that life begins when brain waves begin, as that is the definition of death (when the brain waves cease). So, it would seem logical that since the cessation of brain waves is death, their commencement is life. Brain waves typically begin after 25 weeks, or right at the end of the 1st trimester.

    BUT, and i emphasize the BUT in this case, I dont want my definition forced upon others who define it differently with the help of the government. Pro lifers dont give a crap about the debate surrounding the issue, you are convinced that you are right and refuse to recognize the controversy surrounding the issue. And screw anyone who disagrees with you, even though its about 80% of the nation, their opinion doesn’t matter, only our opinion is the real one.

    And whether or not you are willing to admit, its based in religious belief, its a religious moral. Religions are not the basis for morals, morals and ethics were around LONG before religions showed up, especially christianity, read a history book if you dont believe me.

  39. Greg L said on 24 Feb 2010 at 4:27 pm:
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    Big Dog, I think it’s also worth mentioning that the Second Inaugural address is inscribed on a wall in the Lincoln Memorial and is considered one of the most influential presidential speeches in American history.

    Of course Lincoln’s prepared remarks were more thought out and more deeply considered than Bob Marshall’s extemporaneous comments at a press conference.

    Looking at the video of the press conference, I think it’s pretty clear that Marshall’s remarks are taken out of context to a large degree and didn’t seem to upset a single pastor among the crowd standing behind him. Had Marshall actually said what the press is attributing to him, I imagine there would have been some reaction from them.

  40. Greg L said on 24 Feb 2010 at 4:57 pm:
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    Let’s assume for a moment that we define life as beginning when brainwaves can be detected as our standard. It’s not an implausible standard and it is an absolute one, so kudos for coming up with something at least somewhat reasonable.

    If that were the case, how would one measure the presence of brainwaves in an in utero fetus to ensure that an abortion isn’t actually murdering a legal person, and do so without harming the infant or the mother? If you’re going to have a scientific standard, which I agree is a good idea, you have to be able to apply it. I don’t see a way to actually do that in this case. You’re not going to propose we surgically implant electrodes on the skull of an in utero fetus and take a reproducible measurement before allowing an abortion to proceed, are you?

  41. local gop said on 24 Feb 2010 at 6:48 pm:
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    Im no scientist, but to my understanding nothing has to be physically placed on the skull to detect brain waves.

  42. Greg L said on 24 Feb 2010 at 9:42 pm:
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    Amniotic fluid is electically conductive, so I don’t see how you could read a signal by not only putting elecrodes on the skull, but somehow isolating those electrodes from the amniotic fluid. You might even have to deliver the baby in order to isolate the electrodes sufficiently. These are really, really low voltage microcurrents, and not easy to detect.

  43. sahdman said on 24 Feb 2010 at 10:21 pm:
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    Seems to me its probably best not to cut little babies out of their mommies, Regardless of the science.

  44. Patty said on 24 Feb 2010 at 11:24 pm:
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    local gop,

    You are correct. You are no scientist and you are no historian. I see you are sticking to the same argument about morals. That doesn’t hold water. The Bible is a history book.

    To answer your arguments about the Bible would take up a lot of space and time. I will refer you to two excellent books on the subject: Alleged Discrepancies of the Bible by John Haley and When Critics Ask by Norm Geisler. In fact on page 329 of When Critics Ask under the heading of Matthew 5:17-18 - “Did Jesus come to do away with the Law of Moses?” Dr. Geisler gives an excellent answer to those who like to accuse Christians of trying to impose Levitical law. It’s all about context!!! The Bible is the best selling book of all time and the most abused.

    There are a couple of basic questions you have to answer when it comes to the Bible, God’s Word: Can a perfect God perfectly reveal Himself? and Can a perfect God preserve truth throughout generations? The answer would have to be yes.

    As I have said, God made the world. He instituted the natural physical laws and moral laws. If they are violated there are natural consequences. One only has to look at the newspaper to understand that. Look at Tiger Woods and the consequences he is suffering because of his adultery. His wife may never be able to completely trust him again. His children will have a hard time facing the fact that their dad cheated on their mom. That is a hard pill for his kids to swallow. I can go on with many other examples but I don’t have the time or space. Just pick up the newspaper tomorrow and you will see for yourself.

    The founding fathers, who you finally acknowledged were Christians, understood there are certain fundamental absolute truths from God’s Word. That is why we have the form of government based on checks and balances. They knew man has a natural tendency to do evil-Jermiah 17:9. Did they believe that people need to be forced to convert to Christianity (many Christian haters like to falsely accuse Christians of doing that today)? Absolutely not! See the Constitution. Even God Himself doesn’t force Himself on us. It is strictly a personal decision. He calls us to reason together with Him - Isaiah 1:18. He stands at the door of your heart and knocks - Revelation 3:20. The founding fathers understood that a system of government based on the absolute truths from God would benefit all people even those who would not receive Christ as Savior. You have to admit that to be true since we still live under that same system of government.

    The concepts of life and liberty come from God’s Word. The value and worth of the individual created in the image of God was a guiding principle of the founding fathers. What system of government can compare to ours? Where else can you have the freedoms that we have? Name a system of government that has proven to be superior to ours. As a contrast, look at socialistic/communist countries whose official religion is atheism. They take away individual rights for the good of the collective all. They believe that the government is the savior of the people. They in effect make government out to be a god. Look at Cuba and China. Would you like to live in those countries? We wouldn’t be able to have this discussion there. How about the former Soviet Union. It completely collapsed.

    Your biggest objection seems to be abortion. You are correct. You are no scientist. Science has said that life begins at conception. All that makes one a human being starts at conception. So when you claim life does not begin at conception you are at odds not just with God but also science. Let’s look at one of your line items - “one can provide for itself, the other cannot.” Does that mean Christopher Reeve, the actor, was no longer a live human being after his accident?

    There are physical and emotional consequences of abortion. I do know abortions can cause infertility. I had a miscarriage a few years ago. My doctor would not do a D&C because she said in her own words: “that D&Cs have been found to do more harm than good.” I have heard that from another doctor also. They do not do D&Cs unless they absolutely have to. I know someone in my family who had a D&C and almost bled to death. Evidently Delegate Marshall has seen reports on possible birth defects after a first abortion.

    But I’m sure there are those who hate Delegate Marshall so much that if he said a curse word they would condemn him. I’m sure the local Unitarian Universalists (BRUU members such as Bruce Roemelt, John Bell and Jeanette Rishell) along with others on the Anti-Christian blog are bashing Bob Marshall with a vengeance. How hypocritical they are. They would be the very ones who would approve of a baby being aborted if it was discovered that the baby had some physical handicap while in utero. Yes, UUs are all about abortion on demand at any time during pregnancy. They are all for homosexual marriage. We could talk about the damage that life style has caused - AIDS in particular. I get tired of hearing that stupid argument about what two people do in the privacy of their own bedroom….well AIDS got started in the privacy of a bedroom. Also UUs are advocates for cap and trade. Yep, they do not want you to exhale because you produce too much CO2.

  45. local gop said on 25 Feb 2010 at 12:41 am:
    Flag comment

    like i said, impossible to argue with someone who uses god as a defense. have a nice day.

  46. charles said on 25 Feb 2010 at 1:50 am:
    Flag comment

    local_gop: you make quite a list of things that I presume you think importantly distinguish the fertilized embryo from a “human”. The problem is that most of your list doesn’t distinguish between a specific “time a” and “time b” which could be used to determine some scientific “difference”.

    I believe your error was that you ignored the context of “no difference”, that being the determination of whether a fetus was a human being deserving of the right to life. That’s what we are arguing here, and that is the only difference therefore that is applicable.

    With that in mind, let’s look at your list:
    1) One has a moral compass, the other does not — That is true of born children to a certain age; but only the most rabid leftists think it would be OK to kill a 2-year-old because it doesn’t have a moral compass yet.

    2) One has values and ethics, the other does not — Again, true of born children.

    3) One has the ability to think, the other does not — fetuses have the ability to think at an early age, and it develops both in the womb, and through their life outside the womb. How much “thinking” must a person do before you would say they were ‘human’ and deserve protection?

    4) One can survive on it’s own, the other cannot — leave a month-old baby by themselves, and tell me how long the survive. IN fact, a born baby is harder to care for than a fetus. If you meant “someone other than the mother could care for them”, that is true way before birth, you just need to deliver the baby.

    5) One has consciousness, the other does not — that develops in the womb.

    6) One can provide for itself, the other cannot — same as 4 really, and not true for born humans until they are rather old.

    7) One has the ability to perform analytical thinking and utilizes higher brain functions, the other does not — same as “thinking” or “consciousness”.

    8) One can breath, the other cannot — One has to breath, the other doesn’t. One can take nourishment through fluids, the other can not. Both are the same genetic material.

    9) One has a heartbeat, the other does not — One needs one, one doesn’t. I won’t discount this totally, as it is at least a measurable line to use; most abortions happen after the heart is beating though.

    10) One has a brain wave, the other does not — Given recent discoveries about brain-dead people being conscious at a level unmeasurable without an MRI, I don’t think this is a reasonable determination of what is “human”. It is at least a real yes/no determination.

    11) One has memory retention, the other does not — Are you saying that if an old person can no longer remember anything, they are no longer human?

    I can go on if you like — I doubt it. In your 11 items, there were only 3 or 4 real categories. Which proves the point — in virtually all ways that matter, the embryo is human, and will never do any more than grow in it’s entire life. There are virtually no times between fertilizatoin and death where you can draw a line and say “before this is clearly just a lump of cells, and after this it is clearly a person and deserving of the right to life”.

    We know that an unfertilized egg, left to itself, will never “grow up”. We know that a fertilized egg, left to itself, will “grow up”. The mother does nothing more than shelter and feed the fetus, both before and after birth. That is the clearly scientific differentiation — fertilized or non-fertilized. Everything else is a matter of degree, and opens the door for situational ethicists to claim that babies, old people, infirmed people, and undesirable people aren’t really human and can be enslaved or killed as the “real humans” see fit.

    Since we cannot clearly establish any scientifically certain line except for fertilization, and since (despite all the protests) there is really little harm done in allowing a fetus to grow up and be born, the RIGHT thing to do is to err on the side of the one clear line we can draw, which is that a fertilized egg is human.

  47. sahdman said on 25 Feb 2010 at 8:19 am:
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    I hope this verse isn’t taken out of context but I just happened to be reading it.
    1 Corinthians 1:18-20 also 1 Corinthians 2:12-16

    I came across a website that asks the question

    Why can’t we love them both? mother and unborn baby.

  48. Jeff Hunter said on 25 Feb 2010 at 9:46 am:
    Flag comment

    local gop:

    1) One has a moral compass, the other does not.

    Really, having “moral compass” makes one a Human Being? Which “moral compass” would that be? Any ole “moral compass”? Because yours and mine seem to be pointing different directions and if it’s a specific “moral compass” well then once of us is human and the other is just a slab of meat.

    2) One has values and ethics, the other does not.

    See #1

    3) One has the ability to think, the other does not.

    4) One can survive on it’s own, the other cannot.

    So, if whatever comes out of a human mother’s womb was left to its own it would survive on its own? All that a child at birth needs to survive is nourishment, warmth, and love . . . exactly what a child in the womb receives from her mother, nothing more or less.

    5) One has consciousness, the other does not.

    So if I konk you on the head and knock you out then you cease to be a Human Being?

    6) One can provide for itself, the other cannot.

    See #4

    7) One has the ability to perform analytical thinking and utilizes higher brain functions, the other does not.

    Are you trying to say Congress is not Human? (sorry, couldn’t resist).

    8) One can breath, the other cannot.
    9) One has a heartbeat, the other does not.
    10) One has a brain wave, the other does not.

    Fact: Virutually all abortions happen after 6 weeks of pregnancy (the “doctor” has to be able to see what’s he’s burning with saline, etc.). By now the child is considered an “Embryo” instead of “Zygote” and has a hearbeat by week 4.
    Fact: By week 20 they can sense pain, the child can be seen in an ultrasound resiting being torn apart by the forceps.
    Fact: The child will practice breathing by week 24, which is why this is considered the point of viability. Yes, it’s amniotic fluid they’re breathing, but it’s the act of breathing nontheless. Most children born at this point have a good chance of survival and many don’t even need to be in the NICU very long if at all.

    11) One has memory retention, the other does not.

    What were we talking out again?

  49. Jeff Hunter said on 25 Feb 2010 at 10:05 am:
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    local gop:

    I think I see you’re hang up now . . . you’re an “ageist” - meaning you believe that someone’s worth as a human being is measured by their age, life experiences, value to society, etc.

    I say because of your comments:

    “if you cannot recognize the difference between a living breathing 50 year old human and a zygote then i’m sorry for you”

    “The logic that you employ would also state that there is no difference between a 3 year old and a 30 year old. Thats utterly absurd.”

    Well duh! Of course there’s a difference between a zygote and a 50 year old, between a 3 year old and and a 30 year old. There’s also a vast difference between 2 different 30 year olds as there are between 2 different 3 year olds (or zygotes and 50 year olds for that matter). Those differences are what makes us INDIVIDIUAL human beings, or ADULT human beings, or CHILD human beings, or UNBORN human beings. But they are all HUMAN BEINGS.

    Our HUMANITY, and the DIGNITY that comes with being a HUMAN BEING, is not measured by age, ability, cognition, or contribution to society. This little phrase may or may not be familiar to you:

    “We hold these TRUTHS to be SELF-EVIDENT, that ALL MEN are CREATED EQUAL, that they are ENDOWED BY THEIR CREATOR with certain UNALIENABLE RIGHTS, that among these are LIFE, LIBERTY and the PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS.”

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