Are unborn human beings parasites?

pro-choice-baby.jpgOf course not, but pro-legalized abortion advocates sometimes make that desperate claim in an attempt to de-humanize the unborn.  See Hookworms, Mosquitoes, and Embryos – Sifting Reality for a good analysis.

I actually like when pro-aborts use the “parasite” argument. It may get virtual high-five’s from other pro-aborts, but it is so transparently bad that it reveals to the middle-ground folks just how perverse the pro-abort thinking is. It is like a concession speech.

This doesn’t always work, but I typically point out that their view would mean that the baby could be fully delivered but still be attached via the umbilical cord and she would still be a “parasite.” Therefore, you could kill her any way you liked. They have usually painted themselves in a corner by that point and may actually agree that they’d be OK with that. Again, I’m glad to let the middle ground see that kind of immoral thinking.  People who advance that argument are extremely unlikely to be moved from their position, but they aren’t the target audience of most pro-life reasoning.

Most pro-legalized abortion arguments — and especially ones like the “parasite” argument — are based on emotions and ignore the humanity of the unborn (human zygote, human fetus, etc.). They trade on sentiments how the woman (or child) will be impacted in the areas of poverty, education, love life, etc.

When doing pro-life reasoning training I always start by distinguishing between the psychological complexity of the abortion issue (financial, educational, family pressures, etc. issues are real and powerful and need to be addressed) and the moral simplicity of it (you shouldn’t kill innocent human beings for any of those reasons, regardless of how intense they are).

7 thoughts on “Are unborn human beings parasites?”

  1. In addition to delivering the baby attached, a breast-feeding baby is still technically a parasite by the pro-abortionist’s definition. That gives them about six months more to decide if they’ll choose a post-natal abortion.

    They may argue that it’s different because the child is already born, but if the argument is that the fetus can be killed because it is parasitic then it doesn’t matter if it’s been born. By their argument it is a parasite and can be killed.


  2. There’s nothing more disgusting (or ignorant) than the notion that a child is a parasite. From a scientific or biological standpoint, the idea that one’s own offspring could be considered a parasite is simply obtuse.


  3. From a biological perspective, pregnancy is extremely wearing on a woman’s body. It drains minerals from her bones, shrinks her brain by about 4%, and causes a major overhaul in much of the structure of her body (one of her organs, for example, grows to 1,000 times its pre-pregnancy size; her feet swell; her breasts grow). Biologically, it’s a tough, tough process. Most of my woman friends – even those who are thrilled to be mothers and couldn’t wait to have kids – talk about “having my body back, finally” when their babies are born or done breastfeeding.

    As pro-lifers, we shoot ourselves in the foot if we do not acknowledge that.

    But, as other commenters point out, an infant is also a “parasite” by that definition, as is any child, adult, or elderly person in need of the care of other people. Few humans are truly self-sufficient, and no one is through the course of his life. The question then isn’t about whether or not babies cause a huge stress on a woman’s body (which it does), but about the proper way to deal with the problem. My take is that if you don’t want to be pregnant, don’t get pregnant in the first place. I think that any time we forget that pregnancy is a choice, we implicitly concede a lot of the argument to the anti-lifers.

    Use all the birth control you want, do whatever you want between the sheets, but stop pretending that an unborn child is like pertussis, hitting you out of nowhere. Your volitional act and lack of responsibility created this “parasitic” situation, so…. personal problem, not the baby’s fault.


    1. Excellent points. I borrowed an old anti-parasite quote of yours at that blog and the only objection was how rape wouldn’t apply. I told him I’d be to address the rape/incest issue if he was willing to concede how fallacious the parasite argument was for 99% of pregnancies based on the volitional part alone. I’m expecting a change of subject . . .


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