Pro Life in TN

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Pro Life thoughts in a pro choice world through the eyes of a convert. I took early retirement after working in the social work and Human Resources fields but remain active by being involved in pro life education, lobbying and speaking .



Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Nashville PP hosts speakeasy fundraiser... $35/one drink & chance to cry in your beer with them...

PP Middle and East TN is advertising a fund raiser for drinks in the back room of a local bar entitling it 
"Speakeasy for Planned Parenthood
For $35 you get one drink and the opportunity to "cry in your beer" about how bad it is for the women of Nashville  to go to the Metro Health Dept. for cancer screenings.  National PP  advices focusing on re branding  themselves  and not talk  about the "A"  word  cause that makes people uneasy and  uneasy people tend to close their wallets. So how does  a speakeasy image fit that challenge??   Well perhaps they are saying  they are not the pretty girl but the back room girl .  Does that fit the re branding charge given by headquarters??

Holland House Speakeasy
PP fundraiser ad

"After the aggressive legislative session that had the Tennessee state legislators "go home with the pretty girl," (meaning they defunded Planned Parenthood in TN by blocking Federal Title X Family Planning funding), you'd think it's an all out Prohibition-style criminalization of reproductive rights and access to critical care like cancer screenings, sexually transmitted infection testing and treatement(sic) and birth control!"
So, we invite you to join us Saturday, July 30th, at Holland House Bar & Refuge - a bar reminscent (sic) of the Prohibition Speakeasies of the jazz age - celebrate what we do have: our commitment to serving the women, men and teens who need us and the best supporters and volunteers who are committed to keeping our doors open.
Tickets are $35 per person and include one drink.
Meet us in a secret room in the back and we will enjoy throw back drinks like Vodka Longs and Gimlets while ensconced in jazz age ambience (sic), including the unforgettable music -- no need to dress like a flapper, but we won't discourage it either!"


Thomas Kopp said...

I'm sure you're reaching into your wallet now to help care for all those unplanned babies. What, no?

Well, maybe then you're supporting educating teens and young adults about how to avoid unplanned pregnancies. Are you? If not, why? Do you think making something illegal is going to make it go away?

I don't support abortion; I do support the right of a woman to choose for herself whether to have one or not. I support teaching young adults how to avoid unwanted pregnancies. I don't see you supporting anything... just opposing.

Susie Allen said...

Actually since you asked....yes I do support with my time and money those very causes. I sit on the board, volunteer and contribute to all those causes. In fact I spend equivalent to a full time job plus doing so.
And interestingly enough I never see the pro choice crowd there but I do see many pro life people doing the same. I don't support abortion because it takes the life of an innocent human being. I don't understand when you say you don't support abortion but you support the right of a woman to choose one. So it is like saying I don't support beating and killing my wife but if you want to do it I support your right to do so.
Please rethink why you oppose abortion.....because it is the brutal killing of another human being. Women deserve better than abortion, don't you agree. We can help them make a choice that they both can live with.
Thanks for your comment.

Thomas Kopp said...

I have to split this into two posts, since it exceeds the character limit.

Well, I don't have as much time as I'd like, but I'm going to first address what I see is one of the major problems with your approach.

You ask if I think that women deserve better than abortion, and say that we can help them make that choice. In other words, you don't believe that women are fully capable of making the "right" (in your opinion) choice. Are they then somehow less equipped to think for themselves than men? Being a woman yourself, do you then believe that your judgment is less informed, less logical, and in need of approval or adjustment by someone else? The someone else being not-a-woman, since your sentence "Women deserve better..." does not specify any subset -- it includes all women.

So you believe women -- yourself included, by your own words -- are not capable of making valid choices regarding their own bodies. I don't think you understand how patronizing that is -- and I use that word, with its male-specific root, quite intentionally.

Now, you say you support those very causes. I take it to mean educating teens about how to avoid unplanned pregnancies, and helping care for the unplanned babies that are born. Okay. How exactly do you support those causes? Through what organizations and activities? Please specify. If you think, say, abstinence-only education is helping teens avoid unplanned pregnancy... well, you're wrong. The majority of peer-reviewed studies show little impact if any. Most show no impact. (, ). Of course, maybe that's not one of your areas of activity, so I won't pursue it unless you indicate otherwise. The point being that you can say that you actively support this cause or that, but your idea of support may well not be another's idea of support. So, how do you further the causes of educating teens to prevent unwanted pregnancies and of caring for unplanned babies whose parents do not have the resources to care for them as well as they would like? Again, please be specific. Do your "Right to Life" beliefs begin at conception then end at birth?

You say you never see the pro-choice crowd there. First, that brings us back to my previous point. Where? If it's abstinence-only education, you don't see them there because they know abstinence-only *doesn't work*. And, since Planned Parenthood helps low-income women get preventative care and provides birth control, they're preventing unwanted pregnancies. What they do works. Maybe the pro-choice people are there. Second, how do you know there aren't any pro-choice people there (wherever there is)? Does everyone wear stickers bearing their stand on abortion?

Thomas Kopp said...

It is possible to not support something without trying to stop people from doing it. Abortion really does sicken me. It sickens a lot of people. That's why we try to prevent it with education and try to care for the babies who need care. Pro-choice doesn't mean pro-abortion. A couple points: first, you consider abortion taking a human life. So does life being at conception? If that's the case, do you realize that every time you have sex, whether it results in a pregnancy or not, you're creating then killing human beings? A number of eggs can get fertilized during each sex act, and the great majority of them never attach to the wall of the womb, and are expelled from the woman's body. Now, if you want to go with science, hey, we can discuss it. But you can't rationally argue that abortion is the death of a human unless you acknowledge that you have killed a number of humans yourself by having sex. Which leads us to the second point: your wife-beating analogy is pretty simplistic. But if you want to go with it, then you need to stop beating your wife before you can tell someone else not to beat theirs. On a more adult level, I'd be interested to see what activities of yours I disapprove of, and how many of those I view as doing harm to others. Let's pursue that exercise, in both directions, and we can see how many aspects of each others behaviour we would force them to change against their will, were we to take your attitude equating "not supporting" with "actively trying to force people to act according to your beliefs."

I'm pretty sure I've addressed all your points. Now I'm going to take a shower and go to the speak-easy to spend time in the company of people who care enough to help in ways that are effective rather than dogmatic. I'll probably be late, but it's been worth it.

Thomas Kopp said...


Okay, this is what happens when I'm in a hurry and don't research all my points. I was under the impression that multiple eggs can and are likely to get fertilized with each unprotected sex act. Technically this is true: people have twins, etc. But it does not definitively happen with each unprotected sex act. I must have dreamt the information I had or otherwise misinterpreted some information I was exposed to. However, it is true that a large percentage of fertilized eggs fail to implant and are flushed out of the woman's body. So the more accurate phrasing would be that if the number of times you've had unprotected is greater than the number of children you have, you've very likely created then killed a human being, if you belief life begins at conception. Anyway, this is a sidetrack from my larger points. I look forward to them being addressed.

Susie Allen said...

You are correct that once the sperm and egg unite the product is now called a zygote and not all zygotes result in progressing to the next stage but are flushed out by the body. There is a difference in nature failing to implant and grow to the embryonic stage and me taking proactive measures to end this life in its earliest stages. You say you do not support abortion. Why is that?

Thomas Kopp said...

I was aware of the argument you just made; I was wondering if you'd make it. First, we need to establish: do you or do you not believe that life begins at conception -- that is, the fertilization of the egg? Because if you do, you're in ethical trouble. See, you've now qualified the definition of life based on *intention*. Is a zygote a human being or not? If it is, your intentions just don't matter. If you have sex and an egg is fertilized but does not result in a pregnancy, that's the termination of a human life if you believe a fertilized egg is a person. Whether you "consciously" made an effort to end the life is wholly immaterial. It still ended. As an exercise, try finding someone who recently lost a loved one to, say, an act of nature -- and telling them that nature wasn't trying to kill their loved one, so their death is less important. Yeh, that's extreme, but it's also exactly the argument you're making.

Besides, you're missing something. If a fertilized egg truly is a human (no grey area of intention allowed), then it's incumbent upon you to do everything possible to avoid creating then destroying such a human life. That means always using birth control unless you are specifically trying to conceive. Of course, there's always the birth control method most heavily promoted by religious conservatives: just don't have sex. Then you'll know you've not killed a human being lately. I don't know offhand the success rate of test-tube fertilization; if it's higher than the natural probability of conceiving, then you ought to have test-tube babies if you want babies. Then your chances of being a murderer decrease yet further.

This all sounds very extreme, of course. And calling you a murderer is pretty dramatic, right? But this is the reasoning of the "zygote=human" crowd carried out to its logical end. And since you and most other anti-choice people seem to bandy about the word "murder" pretty freely, I thought we'd see if you like how it felt when applied to you. See, it's all perfectly reasonable.

I'll answer your question: I don't support abortion because it's traumatic, sickening, and in many cases would have been rendered unnecessary by sufficient education and a reduction of widespread poverty. As I explained, I support the things that reduce the need for abortions; not supporting abortion does not mean denying it as a right. If you start legislating what a woman can and cannot do with her body, you might as well cut to the chase and declare women the property of the Church and/or State. Because that's *exactly* what criminalizing abortion does.

Now, I've answered your question, and you have yet to answer any of mine. What organizations are you involved in regarding educating young people about how to avoid unplanned pregnancies? Do you support sex education, then? Please name the organizations and their purposes.

Do you think women are less capable of making decisions regarding their bodies than men are? Do you think women need "help" in making such decisions? If so, do you need help in making such decisions? And if so, how is it that you feel qualified to tell other women what decisions to make?

Your turn. Please answer the questions. Avoiding them is intellectual dishonesty, and a sign that you are not as secure in your beliefs as you would like to believe.

Susie Allen said...

Yes, I accept the scientific evidence that human life begins at conception.
Human life begins with the 1-celled embryo
•“A zygote is the beginning of a new human being.”

Moore K. The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology. 4th ed.
Philadelphia, PA: W.B. Saunders Company; 1988.

Biology and embryology textbooks state that human life begins with the 1-celled
embryo, or zygote, which is formed with the union of an egg and a sperm:
•“Life began for each of us with the fusion of...a sperm and an ovum.”

Curtis H. Invitation to Biology. Second ed. New York, NY: Worth Publishers;
Yes, I know how pregnancies occur and use birth control if I was not ready to accept conception.
I do realize no birth control is 100% effective and also realize that every zygote will not advance to implantation by natural means not by my action.
You describe abortion as traumatic and sickening. Interesting descriptions but you are supportive of the nation's largest abortion provider.
I do believe a woman has a right to decide many things concerning her own body. Interesting that we tolerate laws against prostitution, illegal drug use and even suicide. But with abortion there is another body involved...her offspring(fetus) with a separate DNA etc. So I guess I would say her rights cease where the other body begins. Many women given proper support and accurate information would not choose abortion. I am privileged because I am in good health with the time and resources being retired to be able to do many volunteer worthwhile things with non profits that give tangible help before and after birth including adoption, education etc. I also sit on the board of a non profit that gives factual and not opinion based information on all options once a pregnancy occurs. Having this information upfront often causes the teen (the target audience) to carefully consider their actions once the consequences of each option is explored. No, I don't support organizations that come in and give safe sex talks to teens. First of all no birth control is foolproof and besides there are the effects of STD's etc. So if that is your thing, we will have to agree to disagree. Working with non profits that deals with pregnant teens and some older women most come in and state they were on bc when they got pregnant.
So I appreciate your courtesy but feel we may have to agree to disagree on some things but do agree that abortion is sickening, traumatic etc. But as someone who has traveled extensively outside of the US we have no idea what poverty is. Many wonderful people have been born into poverty and made wonderful contributions to society and our lives are better because they were born.
Well you are a busy man and I am also quite busy but again thanks for your courtesy and I guess this is where it ends.

Thomas Kopp said...

No, I don't think it's quite ended. You've not answered the questions I've asked. I've answered yours. With all due respect, you initiated the conversation by mocking a Planned Parenthood event. Have the moral commitment to continue the conversation and answer the questions. It's easy to slip away with an "agree to disagree" excuse without honestly dealing with the consequences of your words. That's what you're doing. How strong are your beliefs? Are you not willing to be honest and fully engage in a discussion?

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