Should the term "person" be defined to include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning or the equivalent thereof?
Today. November 8, 2011. This is the question before the people of the State of Mississippi.
Initiative #26 is drawing national attention, and is being hotly debated.
For me, it all boils down to one question. One.
When does human life begin?
The Miriam Webster definition of "Kill"? To deprive of life.
Here I have before me, on my desk, hand sanitizer on which is written, "Kills 99.99% of germs."
Kill - to deprive of life.
I find it sad that as a culture, we are willing to grant the status of life to germs, but not to a very unique bundle of DNA that will grow into what we recognize as a human being. That tiny bundle of gametes now joined together as one with a single purpose: human life.
Human life begins at fertilization.
And if human life, a "person".
And that leaves me with one choice. I must vote Yes.
Of course the opposition raises many arguments . . . Forgive me if I feel they come across very much like scare tactics!
Initiative 26 could ban birth control.
Really? All birth control? The most common form of the pill, the combination pill, prevents ovulation. No ovulation, no fertilization, no person. Logically, that will not be banned, since it will not end a life. Some other birth control methods could face some challenges, but I'm willing to risk that.
Initiative 26 bans abortions without exceptions for rape, incest, or life of the mother.
I think we've already established my belief that this is a human life. This is a person. It is fundamentally wrong to take a human life. Rape and incest? Despicable. If a woman is raped and a week later kills her rapist (while he is causing her no further threat), she will be arrested for murder, but she can currently kill another human being, an innocent human being, a child, her child, with no legal repercussions. Life of the mother? We are establishing that this new life is a "person". Every human being has the right to self defense. If another "person" is threatening the mother's life, she has the right to protect herself. This law does not infringe on that right.
Initiative 26 could ban in-vitro fertilization.
This will probably be the most legally challenging area of this legislation, and is the most personally challenging for me; however, this legislation will not automatically ban in-vitro fertilization. There will be further legislation. My conscience will not allow me to vote no based on this possibility alone.
I ask all citizens of Mississippi today. Vote. Vote what your conscience tells you is right, even if you oppose me. But in doing so, make an informed decision. Do not vote based on scare tactics.
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