I wandered over to Vox Nova (liberal Catholic blog) – Humpty Dumpty Land – where Kyle Cupp takes issue with laws which require women who are seeking an abortion to get an ultrasound before the they make their final decision as to whether or not they are going to go through with the abortion or not. The law would also make available the audio of the heartbeat, if audible and the physician would give a description of what the sonogram reveals including the size of the unborn baby and the presence of internal organs. Kyle rejects appearance per se as an epistemological criterion. But we go by appearance all the time and we can’t do without the use of appearance as an epistemological criterion. Kyle contends that this does not qualify as informed consent. But the physician is not only showing the woman a picture of the baby but informing the mother of what characteristics the unborn baby has at that point in time of the baby’s development. A heart, heartbeat, and organs are indicative characteristics of living human life.
I think we can agree that not all laws are moral. Roe v. wade is immoral because it asserts a lie, that a woman has privacy “rights” over another human being, thus having dominance over another human being. Roe v. Wade has also enabled the pro-abortion propagandists to propagate the lie that embryos are not human beings. But laws which require women who are seeking an abortion to obtain an ultrasound before having an abortion so the pregnant woman is able to have “informed consent” are ethically sound because they lead the pregnant woman to a moral truth. Whether there is a consensus ceding the moral truth is irrelevant. The moral truth and initiating the seeking of the moral truth that from the moment of conception the unborn baby is a human being is relevant.
I suspect that Kyle thinks that by showing a pregnant woman an ultrasound that it evokes an irrational response on the part of the woman. Is that really true? Is getting an abortion – ending the life of an unborn baby – without an ultrasound either making an informed decision or making a rational decision? Is it rational to deny a truth? A picture of the unborn baby, being able to view the heart, hear the heartbeat, and obtain information on which organs the baby has may be the trigger that evokes such rationality in the woman that she says “This is a baby, a human life”. Do philosophical discussions have to be won by solely using words? Or can a combination of pictures and words evoke a rational response? Kyle may also think that the ultrasound law is coercive. If you take a look at a number of Kyle’s previous posts he makes it abundantly clear that he is against methods which involve coercion.
Is it possible to re-enforce a known truth by viewing that being or object? We know a carrot is a carrot whether we see it or not. But when we see that long, orange looking vegetable known to be a carrot that re-enforces our knowledge that what we know to be a carrot is a carrot. The same goes for an embryo or an unborn baby. We know that an embryo is an unborn child, a living human being whether we see it or not. Whether another individual recognizes this reality does not matter for it does not diminish the truth, that an unborn baby is a living human being. But when the woman sees the unborn baby it re-enforces both an innate response and the innate knowledge that a unborn baby is a human being in the beginning stages of development.