13 April 2023
American Cold War Gen. Thomas Power was once credited as saying, “Restraint? Why are you so concerned with saving their lives? The whole idea is to kill the bastards. At the end of the war if there are two Americans and one Russian left alive, we win.”
It appears Nevada pro-abortion advocates have adopted this ethos in the culture war regarding abortion policy by promoting the most radical change to our state Constitution in history with proposed SJR7. Under the guise of what they are calling “reproductive freedom,” they are throwing off any restraint in policy that would allow the government to carefully weigh the decisions women make regarding pregnancy versus the right to life of the unborn person in utero until the date of birth.
Government is supposed to protect the vulnerable and the weak. Instead, SJR7 abandons the most vulnerable people in our society for perceived political gain at the expense of the little bastards who can’t speak for themselves. The intent of this column is to provide the bastards who are often overlooked in the debate, but bear the brunt of the consequences of the policy being advocated, with a voice in the ongoing abortion debate in our state.
“Bastards” are defined as “the illegitimate offspring of unmarried parents.” Bastards have been reviled by civil society for thousands of years. Sometimes they are conceived from the passions of lovers without a long-term commitment to one another or to the support of a child their passions might conceive. Other times bastards are conceived from a loveless union or a one-night stand. Under the worst of circumstances bastards are conceived as a result of commercial sexual exploitation, rape or incest. All too often, bastards are conceived by adolescent girls.
In all events, bastards are said to be burdensome, inconvenient and unwanted. In most societies, including ours, bastards typically bring shame upon their mother, their father and themselves just because they exist. So much so, that the word itself is often used a profanity to describe an offensive, annoying and unlikeable person. More often than not, mothers must raise bastards on their own without any help or support from the father or from civil society.
According to the Pew Research Center on Jan. 11, 2023, the vast majority of women who had abortions in 2020 were unmarried (86 percent), while married women accounted for 14 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Abortion laws are not really a means to the end of “greater reproductive freedom” and “profession mobility” for women as they have been marketed to be by pro-abortion advocates as much as they have been an effective tool to reduce the birthrate of “illegitimate” children. Indeed, historically, those advocating for abortion have not hidden the fact that they were trying to reduce the number of illegitimate children being born, especially in low income and minority communities. According to the Guttmacher Institute, 67 percent of abortions are obtained by minority women. The Guttmacher Institute has also conceded the fact that abortion rates are 5.5 times higher among black women than white women, while denying that the efforts of abortion providers to market abortion to minority communities is driving this disparity.
The abortion industry relentlessly targets minority groups who have a higher rate of “unintended pregnancies.” To abortion advocates, this is a euphemism for inconvenient bastard children that need to be eradicated like a deadly disease. Planned Parenthood, birthed in racism and elitism, has always sought to diminish minority populations. Initially, the efforts of these eugenicists was through contraception, but eventually those efforts turned into advocacy for unlimited abortion-on-demand.
While many conservatives refuse to support government programs that address systemic poverty and economic disadvantages of mothers who give birth to bastards and they adopt destructive political rhetoric of shaming and blaming pregnant women and their children for a variety of social and cultural problems in our society, progressives stigmatize bastards by vigorously advocating for their extermination in the name of “choice” and/or “reproductive freedom.” There appears to be bipartisan consensus that bastards present a variety of problems. Bastards are costly to society. They are at greater risk of poverty and need for public assistance. They are more likely to drop out of high school. And, they are more likely to commit crimes and go to prison.
Some readers might argue, “Jason, bastards aren’t alive until they are born and, therefore, don’t have any rights for the government to protect?” But, this argument ignores the science according to many doctors, including the late Emile M. Scarpelli, who was a professor of pediatrics, physiology and biophysics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and adjunct professor of pediatrics (perinatal medicine) at Cornell University College of Medicine.
Dr. Scarpelli argued that understanding the nature of the offspring from conception to birth is the fundamental requirement upon which clinical practice and laboratory research of perinatal medicine is based. Thus, the definition of the person is essential, and “personhood” is not an arbitrary convention. Rather, it is a verity of nature, known and documented by biologists and understandable to all.
“The fundamental approaches of biomedical and social practice must begin with the understanding that the subject before birth is a person and that ‘personhood’ is conferred by successful fertilization of the egg.” Scarpelli EM. Personhood: a biological phenomenon. To hide from this in silence or ignorance is unacceptable as stressed by Scarpelli.
As Scarpelli pointed out, outside the realm of religious dogma, there has been no one whose existence can be traced back to any entity other than the fertilized egg. In this regard, he reasoned that the biological line of existence of each individual, without exception, begins precisely when fertilization of the egg is successful. Among the many other activities of this new cell, most important is the recognition of the new genome, which represents the principal information center for the development of the new human being and for all its further activities.
For the better understanding of the very nature of the zygote, two main features are to be at least mentioned here. The first feature is that the zygote exists and operates from singly on as a being, ontologically one, and with a precise identity. The second feature is that the zygote is intrinsically oriented and determined to a definite development. Both identity and orientation are due essentially to the genetic information with which it is endowed. This cell represents the exact point in time and space where a new human individual organism initiates its own life cycle.
The political mantra “my body, my choice” is a truism in the sense that each of us have a right to choose whether and when to have sexual intercourse or not. However, the natural consequence of such intercourse is conception of a new life. Once that new life begins to grow and develop, then the rights of a bastard’s body must be honored, respected, and protected too.
In my generation, Generation X, 8.7 million members were unwanted bastards eliminated by abortion. As I discussed in a previous column, I am one of the lucky bastards who avoided the early death sentence common for those with my stigmatized existence and was given a chance to live. I would like to believe that my life has inherent value and that it would not have been better for society if I had never been born.
On balance, with the love and support from individuals in my community, I hope my 50 years of life has, thus far, been more of a benefit than a burden to everyone I have shared life with, including my friends who are strident abortion advocates. But, the demand of abortion advocates for unfettered “reproductive freedom” codified in the proposed changes to our Nevada Constitution in SJR7 devalues human life, including mine and millions like me who were born bastards under similar circumstances, and should be opposed.
Jason D. Guinasso is the managing partner of law firm Hutchison & Steffen’s office in Reno. He is a litigator and trial attorney who also maintains an appellate practice, which includes petitions for judicial review of administrative decisions, extraordinary writs, and appeals to the Nevada Supreme Court. He also is legal counsel for the Reno/Fernley Crisis Pregnancy Center and an associate pastor at Ministerio Palabra de Vida where he serves a diverse multicultural church.
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