Pro-Choice and Pro Disability Rights: How Do You Reconcile It?
Recently, I got dragged into an abortion debate on a forum. Most of the people there seem to be pro-choice, although I certainly wasn't the only pro-life person there. With the exception of one guy who supported infanticide, most of the pro-choice people were of the opinion that the right to life only applies after you are born.
And while they tossed around many arguments about the rights of the mother, what it finally seemed to boil down to, for most of them, was that embryos and in some cases fetuses lack certain cognitive traits that they felt determined personhood. Traits such as feeling pain, 'consciousness' (however that is defined), feeling emotions, etc.
One thing I jumped on immediately was that those are also traits many already-born people lack - namely, people with certain disabilities, such as insensitivity to pain, 'vegetative state', etc. When I pointed this out to them, I discovered that most of them were just fine with the way Terri Schiavo died - to them, she wasn't a person either.
But I know there are pro-choice disability rights activists. If you are one of them, I have a question for you. How do you reconcile denying certain rights to embryos, while granting them to people in vegetative states?