Supreme Court skeptical of abortion clinic buffer zones
January 16th, 2014
11:29 AM ET

Supreme Court skeptical of abortion clinic buffer zones

By Bill Mears, CNN Supreme Court Producer

(CNN) - The Supreme Court waded cautiously back into the larger debate over abortion on Wednesday.

A number of justices raised concerns about a Massachusetts state law preventing activists from crossing a 35-foot buffer zone around reproductive health clinics.

During an intense hour of oral arguments, Massachusetts officials said the issue was more about public safety and pedestrian access on local sidewalks. Anti-abortion supporters countered their free speech rights were being violated.

What the high court decides in coming months could affect a broader range of free speech arenas - over issues such as war, taxes, corporate bailouts and elections - where the location of the message is often key.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Abortion • Courts • Culture wars • Ethics • gender issues • Health • Protest • Women

soundoff (1,188 Responses)
  1. Live4Him

    Where do babies come from? From pregnancies.
    How does a woman get pregnant? From sex between a man and a woman.
    Can a woman get pregnant from a one-night stand? Yes.

    So how can a baby get created from a one-night stand if the person isn't created from that act? Therefore, logically, a person is created at conception, not at some later point in gestation cycle (regardless of when it is). This is why the man is responsible if a baby results from his seed. It is because a person, who needs financial support, is created from his act.

    January 17, 2014 at 10:02 am |
    • Sorry

      Sorry, Sorry Povich, but "So how can a baby get created from a one-night stand if the person isn't created from that act? Therefore, logically, a person is created at conception, not at some later point in gestation cycle (regardless of when it is)."
      is a very sorry argument.

      January 17, 2014 at 10:07 am |
      • Live4Him

        so you claimed but were unable to provide any evidence.

        January 17, 2014 at 10:16 am |
        • Johnny

          The best evidence that it was a bad argument is that you made it, Live4Him.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:19 am |
        • Ted

          Oh, the irony, L4H whining about someone else's lack of evidence. ROFL!

          L4H, you have never been able to produce a shred of testable evidence for your crazy religious beliefs. You have dodged and skipped out of requests for evidence every time. Frankly, you suck.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:47 am |
    • lunchbreaker

      How does a woman get pregnant?

      From se x between a man and a woman.


      Artificial inseme/nation

      January 17, 2014 at 10:43 am |
    • ME II

      "So how can a baby get created from a one-night stand if the person isn't created from that act? Therefore, logically, a person is created at conception, not at some later point in gestation cycle (regardless of when it is). "

      What? "if the person isn't created from that act?"
      A person may eventually exist because of that act, but is not immediately created. At a minimum, fertilization is not immediate.

      January 17, 2014 at 10:48 am |
      • Live4Him

        @ME II : A person may eventually exist because of that act, but is not immediately created.

        Then why hold men responsible for that which they have no control over?

        January 17, 2014 at 10:53 am |
        • ME II

          What are you talking about?
          Of course, the man has control; he didn't have to have se.x, but he doesn't have control over the woman's body. Once he made his choice, if a child is produced, then he has a responsibility toward it.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:57 am |
        • TDM

          What is your position on this? First you complain because men aren't a part of the decision to abort, (even though they most always know and have either run away or are driving the woman to the clinic) or you are giving men a free pass out of the decision at all.
          You're all over the page with your opinions.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:58 am |
        • TDM

          Meant for Live.

          January 17, 2014 at 11:01 am |
        • Live4Him

          @ME II : Of course, the man has control; he didn't have to have se.x

          We're talking about the creation of a child. Does he or does he not have control?

          @TDM : First you complain because men aren't a part of the decision to abort

          Never have. My posit is that an inequality exists in the decision to abort. If there was equality, then it isn't solely the woman's decision (which is what is often argued). If it is solely the woman's decision, then the man shouldn't be required to pay child support. So, my argument is to expose the flaw in my opponents' position.


          January 17, 2014 at 11:29 am |
        • Maryann

          Live4Him wrote "We're talking about the creation of a child "

          Are you talking about what may start the creation of a child or are you talking about providing care for that which has developed into a human being that can survive outside of its mother's body? Two different things don'tcha know...

          January 17, 2014 at 11:47 am |
        • ME II

          "We're talking about the creation of a child. Does he or does he not have control?"

          Absolute control, no, because he doesn't hare eggs or a uterus.
          However, that does not absolve him of responsibility towards what he can control, i.e. sperm, and the possibility of it producing a child.

          January 17, 2014 at 12:01 pm |
        • TDM

          @TDM : First you complain because men aren’t a part of the decision to abort

          @Live4Him: Never have. My posit is that an inequality exists in the decision to abort.

          Then you are complaining that men aren't a part of the decision to abort.

          January 17, 2014 at 12:02 pm |
  2. Live4Him

    abortion = avoidance of responsibility for men!

    January 17, 2014 at 9:50 am |
    • The Live4Him Collection at Macy's


      January 17, 2014 at 9:54 am |
    • sam stone

      salvation = avoidance of responsibility for christians

      January 17, 2014 at 10:01 am |
      • devin

        I'm all ears Sam. Please do tell how this is so?

        January 17, 2014 at 10:23 am |
        • it should be

          pretty obvious, devin. hiding misdeeds from the law, but getting an advance easy-pass around those misdeeds from the christian savior (confession for certain flavors); need we remind you of the issues the RCC is plagued with as an example?

          January 17, 2014 at 11:04 am |
        • sam stone

          devin: i have had blog christians tell me that they are sinful and deserving of hell.

          do you agree?

          if so, how is salvation not avoidance of responsibility for sin?

          January 17, 2014 at 11:08 am |
        • sam stone

          If you can get around to an answer, i would sure appreciate it

          But, you cannot seem to grasp the inconsistency of an omniscient god and freewill

          So, I am not holding out much hope for a rational response

          January 17, 2014 at 11:18 am |
        • devin


          First, no need to get testy over what was a previous question which either you did not see my response or perhaps just didn't like. I'm guessing the latter.

          Second. I'm a blog Christian and I'm a sinner, I'm also an annihilationist so I will disagree with the last part. In spite of my views on hell, I will explain your confusion. If an individual adheres to Christianity, in most cases they derive their moral and ethical compass from the bible. So, while the bible says we are created imago dei, it also reveals are sinful condition. And, to borrow a line from Paul Harvey, you know the rest of the story ( Jesus/sacrifice/resurrection/redemption/justification). Bottom line: If you are going to concede the point that christians base their sinfulness on what they read in the bible, then you must readily admit that they also accept the solution the bible provides for their sin,

          January 17, 2014 at 11:44 am |
        • devin


          Before I respond, could you clarify " hiding misdeeds from the law"?

          January 17, 2014 at 11:58 am |
        • devin

          Well that's rather strange. In my quote of Paul Harvey, there are spaces between each word, almost as if it I were trying to show cadence or inflection in how he said that line. I have no idea how those spaces got there.

          January 17, 2014 at 12:04 pm |
        • sam stone

          You are correct that I did not agree with your answer to the question about freewill being consistent with an omniscient god, just as i would not agree with fuschia being the correct answer to the question "what is the square root of 9?"

          as far as the rest, i concede that christians who derive their view on sinfulness from the bible also accept the biblical view salvation and forgiveness from sin from the bible. that doesn't make it any less an avoidance of responsibility from said "sin".

          January 17, 2014 at 12:11 pm |
        • Pete

          I find the idea of letting someone else take your punishment to be immoral. Which makes all Christians immoral because they have no problem with letting Jesus take their punishment. If you are a sinner and fell that you deserve hell then stand up and take it like a man.

          January 17, 2014 at 12:34 pm |
        • devin

          "It doesn't make it any less of an avoidance of responsibility from said sin". Of course it does. If you establish that the bible is the framework, which we have, then it's definitions should be followed. Christ was the propitiation for our sins, the bible's remedy, not some individual looking to shirk responsibility.

          For someone who denies the very concept of sin ( I apologize if that is a wrong assumption) this whole conversation seems irrelevant.

          January 17, 2014 at 12:37 pm |
        • devin


          Now that's a new one.

          January 17, 2014 at 12:43 pm |
        • sam stone

          you are right, it is irrelevant

          you are still wrong about freewill, though

          January 17, 2014 at 1:06 pm |
        • Pete

          The fact that the bible says it is o.k. to let Jesus take your punishment is proof that in the end Christians aren't actual held responsible for their sins. That is the whole point of the Jesus sacrifice. How do you not see this?

          January 17, 2014 at 1:27 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Avoidance of responsibility for men?
      Men do not and cannot control abortion.
      Whether for or against the child being born, ultimately, the decision rests with the mother (except in extreme cases of violent assault to force miscarriage or forcible confinement to force gestation).
      Biologically speaking, a male's contribution to a gamete is over as fast as you can say "zygote". If nature was fair, all women would contribute would be an egg and something else would carry it to term.
      When my partner and I found out she was pregnant, we had long and heatfelt discussions about our options – all of them. I let my opinion be known, but I always knew that the choice was not – and could not – be mind to make. My choice was whether I would support her decision (whichever way it went) or run away form the situation.
      Don't try and paint abortion as something that is always forced on women by an overwhelming patriarchy.

      January 17, 2014 at 10:22 am |
      • Live4Him

        @Doc Vestibule : Men do not and cannot control abortion.

        Let's follow this logically. Abortion is one of the possible results of a pregnancy. A pregnancy is one of the possible results of sex. Therefore, you're argument appears to be claiming that men do not and cannot control sex. This argument is plain ludicrous. Would you like to restate it?

        January 17, 2014 at 10:32 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          An STI is another possible outcome of s.ex.
          When someone finds out they have such an infection, the choice of whether or not to seek treatment is with the individual.
          The one who gave the infection does not and cannot control what the person they infected chooses to do about it.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:48 am |
        • Doris

          Live4Him: "Therefore, you're argument appears to be claiming that men do not and cannot control sex."

          That was not his claim at all. What's ludicrous is your logic which continues to suffer in trying to twist another's words. It's pretty obvious that Doc is talking about the ultimate decision for a woman regarding her body once she is pregnant.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:52 am |
        • Live4Him

          @Doc Vestibule : The one who gave the infection does not and cannot control what the person they infected chooses to do about it.

          And yet they can be held responsible in a court of law for giving it to the person. Thus, the person is infected by the contact, and likewise a person is created from the contact. Which is why the courts rule that men pay child-support even for one-night stands.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:57 am |
        • TDM

          Live, which is it? Do you want men to be a part of the decision to abort or not? It's hard to tell.
          Those same men could step up and raise the baby, but rarely do...why?

          January 17, 2014 at 11:05 am |
  3. Live4Him

    If abortion were outlawed, just think of all the immature men who would need to abstain or be responsible! 🙂

    January 17, 2014 at 9:47 am |
    • lunchbreaker

      And women, let's not be se xist about this 😉

      January 17, 2014 at 10:03 am |
      • Live4Him

        Of course, women wouldn't need to give sex for intimacy and people would have to go back to building honest relationships.

        January 17, 2014 at 10:19 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Do I detect a bit of projection here?
          In my youth, I was with several women with whom I wanted a much closer, more intimate relationship but they were the ones who wanted nothing more than sweaty rutting.
          There are other women who use their se.xuality as a barganing chip, dangling the prospect of intimacy as a means of attaining their selfish ends.
          When women aren't raised in the traditional Christian mindset of subservience, they are far less likely to allow themselves to be exploited.
          There are users and exploiters of both genders.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:42 am |
        • Live4Him

          @Doc Vestibule : I was with several women with whom I wanted a much closer, more intimate relationship but they were the ones who wanted nothing more

          When women become afraid of commitments, it is because of a history (or perception) of men walking away. Thus, it is better to be the one leaving than the one left. Also, sometimes they could be pretending you were someone else.

          @Doc Vestibule : There are other women who use their se.xuality as a barganing chip, dangling the prospect of intimacy as a means of attaining their selfish ends.

          Yep, just the reverse of men – who dangle a 'committed relationship' in order for their lusts to be satisfied. Why wouldn't you expect women to try similar tricks. Women are just as human (and sinful) as men.

          @Doc Vestibule : When women aren't raised in the traditional Christian mindset of subservience, they are far less likely to allow themselves to be exploited.

          That would be hard to quantify in today's world where women are exploited non-stop in their youth. The media (TV, advertisements, etc.) always reveal women as sex-objects. How often do you see women treated with respect and common courtesy?

          @Doc Vestibule : There are users and exploiters of both genders

          True, women can learn too 🙂

          January 17, 2014 at 10:51 am |
        • TDM

          You have a very skewed perception of women, L4H. You seem to have a somewhat Madonna complex going on.

          I'll say this: you're entertaining.

          January 17, 2014 at 11:12 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          "When women become afraid of commitments, it is because of a history (or perception) of men walking away."

          Either that, or they just don't want a commitment.
          You are assuming that all women primarily seek committed relationships when that simply isn't the case. You're painting all women with the same brush. I have always been attracted to independent, self-aware, determined women (I dated a lot of punk rock girls in my youth) and as a result, I've been in what you would consider the stereotypical "female" role of wanting commitment while the woman doesn't.
          That is, in fact, the status of my current relationship. We've been together, raising a family for a decade. We share a home, a bank account, power of attourney, are the beneficiaries of each other's wills, etc. And yet we aren't married not becuase I'm "afraid of commitment", but rather because SHE doesn't want to get married.
          So far as she is concerned, we'll be together until we don't want to be.

          Your second point again betrays a number of (se.xist) assumptions on your part – namely that any mind of manipulative behaviour in regards to relationships exhibited by women is nothing more than a justifiable reaction to evil, patriarchal manipulations.

          How often do I see women treated with respect and common courtesy?
          I am and always have been a nerd. The media I've primarily consumed since childhood has been absolutely rife with positive female role models whose se.xuality is barely a part of their chracaterization. Star Trek's Captain Janeway, Heinlein's Friday, Agent Scully from the X-Files, Sarah Connor in Terminator 2, Ripley in Aliens.

          January 17, 2014 at 11:44 am |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      It is possible to be responsible and still end up pregnant.

      January 17, 2014 at 10:14 am |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      Because when it was outlawed men and woman were responsible and abortions didn't happen.

      What fantasy world do you live in?

      January 17, 2014 at 10:26 am |
      • TDM

        If abortion went back to being outlawed, back street abortions would uptick, and it would make it just that much easier for people like Live4Him to be able to demonize women worse than she already does.

        January 17, 2014 at 11:16 am |
  4. Doc Vestibule

    A Candid Conversation between Two Species
    The Man: I am the predilect object of Creation, the centre of all that exists…
    The Tapeworm: You are exalting yourself a little. If you consider yourself the lord of Creation, what can I be, who feed upon you and am ruler in your entrails?
    The Man: You lack reason and an immortal soul.
    The Tapeworm: And since it is an established fact that the concentration and complexity of the nervous system appear in the animal scale as an uninterrupted series of graduations, where are we cut off? How many neurons must be possessed in order to have a soul and a little rationality?
    – Santiago Ramon y Cajal, Recollections of My Life

    Is each and every foetus and infant precious to God?
    It seems to depend on one's definition of "precious".
    Newborn males are worth 5 shekels and females (of course being inferior) are worth 3. (Leviticus 27:6)
    The low estimate isn't too surprising as they are not to be counted as real people yet (Numbers 3:15).
    This is fairly practical assessment given the infant mortality rate 2,000 years ago.
    But if the child was conceived out of wedlock, God suggests burning the mother and foetus together (Genesis 38:24).
    Does that mean that they go to Hell together, or does the unborn go to purgatory, limbo or Heaven?

    But at what point does a blastocyst get divinely endowed with a soul?
    Thomas Aquinas said males get a soul after 40 days and females after 80. Therefore, they aren't people in the early stages of gestation. Many Jewish theologans believed that ensoulment took place with the first breath of air – the soul enters the body at birth at leaves at death, in other words. Muslim scholars traditionally taught that God sends an angel to form a foetal soul after 42 nights.

    But beyond debating mytholigical minutiae, there are real world consequences and considerations when taking a hardline pro-life stance. The nation of Chile absolutely bans abortion is any circu/mstance, including in the case of an 11 year old whose father-in-law ra/ped her last year. Despite popular protest, she is being forced to carry to term.

    And what of a mother's right to self-determination? There are no laws stopping a pregnant woman from adversly affecting foetal development by smoking, drinking or poor diet. Should all pregnant women be required by law to do everything possible to encourage optimal foetal development?

    Even amongst staunch pro-lifers, there are vast seas of contradictory views.
    All life is sacred – until it is born. A good portion of Republican pro-lifers want the kids born, but not thereafter fed, housed, clothed, or educated. This is evident by the way in which they consistently vote against social programmes that would assist at risk youth.
    At the extreme end of the spectrum is the outright hyprocrisy of folk like The Army of God and other (self-professed) Christian groups who kill doctors that deign to discuss abortion with their patients.
    And such confusing messages are being taught to young women in the US.
    We say “here, have a condom. No, I can’t tell you more, or your parents will sue. Sure, you’ll have s.ex anyway, but we can’t give the impression that we approve, so we just won’t tell you about how to handle it if it does happen.”
    People think that being a mother is good, except we tell them not to get pregnant. Motherhood is grand, but it’ll wreck your life. If you give up a kid for adoption, you’re a failure! If you get pregnant, you’re a failure! Young, unwed women get demonized, and yet the same people make the choice to carry to term and give the kid for adoption seem worse than abortion.
    We need to encourage people to have abortions if they must, and make damn sure that the next generation doesn’t have to. Or that giving up children for adoption is a mature, honourable choice. Or that getting sterilized and adopting is even better.
    We need to stop arguing about the semantic evils of abortion and concentrate on making it unnecessary.

    January 17, 2014 at 9:22 am |
  5. Honey Badger Don't Care

    Bodily autonomy is the issue. The mother has the LEGAL right to choose to abort a fetus. Plain and simple.

    January 17, 2014 at 9:20 am |
    • Live4Him

      And she has the right to give birth to the child and force her partner into a 18-year commitment via child support. Sounds good to you? You don't have any say in the issue.


      January 17, 2014 at 9:46 am |
      • Damocles

        You still sound like you are pro-abortion in this case.

        Give birth... unless the guy says no, then you better come up with some other plan.

        January 17, 2014 at 10:05 am |
        • Live4Him

          I'm pro-responsibility. Put childhood behind and be responsible, build honest relationships (not just use one another).

          January 17, 2014 at 10:22 am |
      • Damocles

        I agree, now if only it needed to be said just once to bring it about.

        January 17, 2014 at 10:26 am |
    • devin

      Do you really think there would have been 40 years of cultural and societal dissension were it as " plain and simple" as you say?

      January 17, 2014 at 9:52 am |
      • tallulah13

        The law is plain and simple, but a lot of men, and some women, seem to think that pregnant women are property of the state. As you might guess, most of those those pregnant women do not agree. The ones who do agree end up being supported by the state, which leads to more complaining by the anti- abortion crowd. Go figure.

        January 17, 2014 at 10:03 am |
        • devin

          In that "birds of a feather flock together" I would imagine at least 75% of my friends and fellow church members share my same pro life position. I can assure you not one of us considers a " pregnant woman as property of the state." In fact, I'm certain there are virtually no individuals that are pro life who would espouse this. You have many different angles from which to argue your positon, no need to resort to fabrication.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:14 am |
        • tallulah13

          Trying to enact laws which prevent women from controlling their reproductive cycle is nothing more than proclaiming that a woman is property of the state. There is nothing more personal than one's own body. Losing the right to chose how your body will be used is just the same as being told that you are not a citizen, but are instead something to be used and controlled.

          January 17, 2014 at 10:50 am |
  6. hearties

    They are your growing babies within you and they need your love to live, when they are most helpless.

    January 17, 2014 at 1:02 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      If a blastocyst is a baby than an acorn is an oak tree.

      January 17, 2014 at 8:23 am |
      • Reality # 2

        But acorns don't fertilize and grow within their mother's womb whereas human womb babies do.

        January 17, 2014 at 8:29 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          Exactly, and who gets to control the womb and what happens there?

          January 17, 2014 at 9:12 am |
        • Reality # 2

          Mom and Dad have full responsibility of what happens in the womb. Fathers become Fathers at the moment of conception aiding and protecting the growing child.

          January 17, 2014 at 11:25 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          I didn't ask who was responsible for what happens in the womb....I asked who has CONTROL of the womb.

          Big difference.

          January 17, 2014 at 12:03 pm |
        • Reality # 2

          Who has control of the womb? Tis a three-way control system, Baby, Mom and Dad.

          January 17, 2014 at 12:11 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          Really? And why does a fetus have control over a mothers organs but a 10 year old doesn't? Can a 10 year old force his mother to give him/her a kidney? Why not? He/she has a right to life....right?

          You are infering a fetus has more rights than a 10 year old. Logically that makes no sense. And don't get me started over a man having control over a womans body.

          January 17, 2014 at 12:26 pm |
        • Reality # 2

          It is called Team Control !!!!

          January 17, 2014 at 5:53 pm |
      • lngtrmthnkr

        Doc, An acorn can lie dormant for a great period of time before taking root and becoming an oak whereas a baby is in the growth process of cell division from the first and is continually developing into a baby.

        January 17, 2014 at 10:42 am |
  7. Bootyfunk

    the christian god supports abortion.
    the bible never says anything bad about abortion.
    there is even an abortion recipe in the bible.

    January 16, 2014 at 10:49 pm |
    • Anonymous

      God may not actively support it, but He certainly doesn't FORBID it.

      January 16, 2014 at 10:53 pm |
      • Bootyfunk

        weird to put a recipe in your guide book for something you don't actively support...

        January 16, 2014 at 10:54 pm |
        • Anonymous

          Nah, I think it was more of the fire and brimstone God punishing a woman whose husband thought she cheated...men did write the Bible, after all.

          January 16, 2014 at 11:05 pm |
  8. MW Online

    Austintaciousness   noun

    Synonymns   ostentatiousness

    January 16, 2014 at 8:41 pm |
  9. Austin

    Here is the sad truth about humans.

    Sin permeates every person in every way.
    Mans will is in bondage
    John 1:9-11
    9 The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him
    2 Corinthians 4:3

    3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing..
    1 Corinthians 2:14

    Natural Man=MORON spiritual ignorance
    14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

    John 3:3 spiritual blindness

    3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

    spiritual inmity / HATRED
    John 3:19-20

    New King James Version (NKJV)

    19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.
    Romans 3:12

    New King James Version (NKJV)

    12 They have all turned aside;
    They have together become unprofitable;
    There is none who does good, no, not one.

    John 3:36

    36 He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”


    21 For as the Father raises the dead and gives life to them, even so the Son gives life to whom He will.

    Ephesians 2:1

    2 And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins,

    Colossians 2:12-13

    New King James Version (NKJV)

    12 buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. 13 And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircu.mcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses,

    January 16, 2014 at 7:57 pm |
    • Damocles

      You say bondage is bad, yet offer up a deity who demands it? Kind of strange.

      January 16, 2014 at 8:14 pm |
      • Austin

        total depravity and incapability without the as.sistance of the Holy Spirit to avoid eternal separation.

        of course God would never send anyone to torment, people choose to go there.

        there is no injustice when it comes to eternity. Just like you are free to choose now.

        On the other hand, killing babies is injustice. This world is a death manifestation aside from the Seed of Life.

        January 16, 2014 at 8:22 pm |
        • Austin

          this countries debt is comparable to its spiritual condition. totally depraved vacuum and black hole..

          January 16, 2014 at 8:24 pm |
        • Cherilyn B

          Austin - I am just curious. Is english a second language for you? No offense meant but I can't follow most of your statements.

          January 16, 2014 at 8:41 pm |
        • Blip

          Interesting... Considering how many babies (and children, adults, animals, etc.) God has killed. ... Hmmm, very interesting, indeed.

          January 16, 2014 at 8:59 pm |
        • Bootyfunk

          you have a dour view of humanity - mine is not so bleak.
          humans are basically good, not horrible sinners.
          you have a very depressing view of your fellow brothers and sisters.
          cheer up - humans aren't that bad.

          January 16, 2014 at 10:51 pm |
        • Anonymous

          I don't think you have a firm understanding of the word 'depraved', Austin, seeing that you frequently use the word improperly. Are you just using it for shock value?

          January 16, 2014 at 10:56 pm |
        • Bootyfunk

          yay depravity! 🙂

          January 16, 2014 at 10:56 pm |
        • Bootyfunk

          "of course God would never send anyone to torment, people choose to go there."
          +++ completely false. no one chooses to go to hell. they are sent there. they may have chosen to commit actions you deem "sinful", but that's not choosing hell. no one is asking if they want to go. god sends them there when they do what he deems naughty. your loving god sends people to be tortured for all eternity if they break his rules. sadistic.

          January 16, 2014 at 11:00 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          "of course God would never send anyone to torment, people choose to go there."

          Stalin does not send anyone to the Gulag.
          It is those who have hardened their hearts against him who send themselves to the Gulag through their bourgoise atti/tudes and counter-revolutionary actions.
          This was not Stalin's plan at all.
          He truly wants everyone to go to the Worker's Paradise and it grieves him that so many harden their hearts against him.
          But he will not force anyone into the Worker's Paradise against their wishes.
          He respects their free will.
          If you don't want to go to the Gulag, just open your heart to the love of Stalin.

          Sound familiar at all?

          January 17, 2014 at 9:44 am |
    • Bootyfunk

      "Sin permeates every person in every way."
      +++ sin is a disgusting concept meant to control you. guilt, fear and ignorance are the pillars of religion. all humans aren't born terrible and evil like your bible teaches. we don't need to be redeemed from birth. you don't need god to be a good person. treat your brothers and sisters of this world with compassion and you'll do just fine.

      January 16, 2014 at 10:47 pm |
  10. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    A buffer zone around women's clinics is entirely reasonable. I've been honoring a large buffer zone around places of worship for some time now.

    January 16, 2014 at 7:48 pm |
    • Austin

      if God sees abortion as murder, the men should break the law and break down the altar of death. God's law is above mans law.

      January 16, 2014 at 7:59 pm |
      • TDM

        Not in this country, sport. Maybe in a theocracy. Sorry you don't get to interfere with women's choices.

        January 16, 2014 at 8:08 pm |
      • Damocles

        If you think along the lines of nothing happens with a deity's tacit approval, then it seems it's ok with murder on a grand scale.

        January 16, 2014 at 8:11 pm |
        • fred

          " Psalm 139:15-16 says, “My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in Your book were all written; the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them.”

          =>You are correct God knows and provides because all things work to the good of those who believe and are in Christ.

          January 16, 2014 at 8:45 pm |
        • Tom, Tom, the Other One

          In the depths of the earth? You should read critically before you post, fred.

          January 16, 2014 at 8:56 pm |
        • Damocles

          Hear that boys and girls? Murder is now a good thing.

          Wizard's First Rule

          January 17, 2014 at 9:57 am |
      • Observer


        The Bible NEVER mentions abortion.

        Please read one.

        January 16, 2014 at 8:14 pm |
        • fred

          Take note it was the ungodly leaders of governments that ok abortion:
          Pharaoh commanded all his people, saying, "Every son who is born you are to cast into the Nile, and every daughter you are to keep alive."

          January 16, 2014 at 8:32 pm |
        • midwest rail

          That is absurd, fred. By that definition, an adult prisoner who is executed has just been aborted. Nonsense.

          January 16, 2014 at 8:40 pm |
        • fred

          Exodus 21:22-23 states, “If men struggle with each other and strike a woman with child so that she gives birth prematurely, yet there is no injury, he shall surely be fined as the woman's husband may demand of him, and he shall pay as the judges decide. But if there is any further injury, then you shall appoint as a penalty life for life . . . .”

          January 16, 2014 at 8:40 pm |
        • fred

          A fetus is more than organic matter: Jeremiah 1:5 says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,

          January 16, 2014 at 8:42 pm |
        • MW Online

          "Jeremiah 1:5 says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,"

          good grief, fred, I've heard of robbing the cradle, but that's ridiculous

          January 16, 2014 at 8:45 pm |
        • Alias

          ther is no question that a true bible thumper can't answer by taking a bible quote out of context.

          January 16, 2014 at 8:47 pm |
        • Cherilyn B

          for MW Online: Thanks for the funny.

          January 16, 2014 at 8:52 pm |
        • Observer


          Pick a Bible. Others say she MISCARRIES.

          January 16, 2014 at 9:45 pm |
        • TDM

          Mine says miscarriage. And the fine is paid if the wife that was assaulted is fine after the miscarriage.

          This is an assault issue. I am unsurprised that you would try and co-opt it to fit your idea that this is remotely about abortion when plainly it is NOT.

          January 16, 2014 at 10:04 pm |
        • fred

          There is no question life has value before birth. The object of loss was the baby and civil / tort remedy was based upon the loss of the baby.

          January 16, 2014 at 10:35 pm |
        • TDM

          "When men strive together, and hurt a woman with child, so that there is a miscarriage, and yet no harm follows, the one who hurt her shall be fined, according as the husband shall lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judge determines.

          If any harm follows, then you shall give life for life, eye fir eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe."

          Fred, this passage is clearly talking about the woman.
          If the woman suffers a miscarriage, and additionally gets her eye plucked out, an eye will be taken out from the perpetrator, etc.
          Why would that addendum "if no harm follows" be added?

          January 16, 2014 at 11:28 pm |
        • sam stone

          yep, fred, no one knew more about biology than iron age sheep molesters

          January 17, 2014 at 10:10 am |
      • Alias

        as soon as we all agree on which god is the right one, then you can have god's law above man's.
        Until then, man's law must be followed even by you.

        January 16, 2014 at 8:50 pm |
      • sam stone

        man's law is above god's law

        it has been shown that man can throw people in jail

        with god, it is more blah, blah, fvcking blah empty proxy threats

        January 17, 2014 at 10:07 am |
  11. Russ

    "anti-abortion supporters" is oxymoronic.
    CNN: why such an aversion to the group's self-designation: "pro-life"?

    preferring a negative term over against a group's self-articulation gives an appearance of bias.
    would you instead label advocates of "marriage equality" as "anti-traditional marriage supporters"?

    if the goal of journalism is unbiased reporting, why not use EVERY group's self-designation?

    January 16, 2014 at 6:07 pm |
    • Javier

      The term 'anti-abortion' sounds a little more forceful and menacing while the term 'pro-life' sounds peaceful.

      January 16, 2014 at 6:12 pm |
      • Javier

        That was just an opinion, but agree generally with your post @russ.

        January 16, 2014 at 6:14 pm |
    • Anonymous

      Um...be cause idiots like to call pro-choice advocates "pro-death"?

      The should call themselves what they really are: pro forced birth that will vote against any program that will help hungry children and cut education, while the REAL pro-death people support unnecessary wars and the death penalty.

      January 16, 2014 at 6:33 pm |
      • Russ

        @ Anonymous: thank you for unintentionally demonstrating my point.

        January 17, 2014 at 10:17 am |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV


      of the set of "pro-life" / "anti-abortion" people, how many of them also support the death penalty?

      Are these people still "pro-life"?

      How many of them also support reducing food stamps, health-care or unemployment benefits and do not support increases in the minimum wage?

      Are these people still "pro-life" – particularly when you consider that better access to health care and nutrition leads to improved livelihood for the beneficiaries?

      "Anti-abortion" is a much more accurate term for the discussion in question, even if it involves a negative. They are o.p.p.o.s.e.d to abortion. That is precisely their stance.

      And just in case you are keeping score, in this case, the opposite of anti-abortion is pro-choice, not pro-abortion. 😉

      January 16, 2014 at 6:49 pm |
      • RB

        True, what should we do with murderers? What would be a true minimum living wage?

        January 16, 2014 at 7:30 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        The whole crime and punishment thing is out of hand in this country. The existence of deterents clearly do not work completely – people still steal, rob, violate and kill with heavy penalties in place, but I do believe in rule of law. A punishment must therefore exist for violation of the law.

        I am pro-life – at least as it regards the death penalty. The execution of one innocent man is too many. So we are left with jails. Meaningful sentencing is important. The overcrowding problem in jails is completely unrelated to violent crimes (violent crime is down dramatically while incarceration rises almost exponentially) and the most expensive part of the prison is 'death row'.

        January 16, 2014 at 8:50 pm |
      • Russ

        @ GOP:
        1) some 'pro-life' advocates are actually against the death penalty as well. and some also are ardent supporters of helping the poor. are all? no. but i doubt you'd seriously claim there is any less of a spectrum among their opponents.

        2) you can't have it both ways. you want to maintain one group's positive self-designation while determining (read: restricting) the other group's ability to self-designate. the reciprocal label for "pro-choice" (from their opponent's perspective) would instead be something along the lines of "anti-unborn child's choice", etc.

        that is the primary point the pro-life movement is making: this is a human life being taken. it's the heart of their argument. if put in terms of choice, the unborn child has no choice. pro-choice advocates argue the child is not a human life yet, and therefore the mother's choice is the primary concern. but in BOTH cases, failing to see the *positively* stated motive is failing to hear each group's primary motivation and fundamentally different convictions about what is happening.

        and that's my point. the negative term is a selective highlighting that assumes a particular perspective (i.e., bias).

        January 17, 2014 at 10:57 am |
        • Observer


          The entire point of the hypocritical "pro-life" name is the not-to-subtle idea than any opponent must be "anti-life" which is a complete LIE due to the concerns of pro-choice supporters for the MOTHER who is often IGNORED by the so-called "pro-life" side.

          January 20, 2014 at 3:56 pm |
        • Russ

          @ Observer: that's a two-way street. "pro-choice" clearly implies the commensurate "anti-choice" label, whereas your opponents would claim this never gives the child a choice.

          again, clearly ANY label conveys bias, so why choose to use one side's self-designation & NOT the other's? that's the journalistic faux pas.

          January 20, 2014 at 4:03 pm |
    • Observer


      EVERYONE is "pro-abortion" if things get horribly bad enough.

      EVERYONE is "pro-life". It just depends if that life is the mother or fetus.

      The sides are PRO-CHOICE and ANTI-CHOICE.

      January 16, 2014 at 6:57 pm |
      • TDM

        Anti-choice. Good turn of phrase.

        January 16, 2014 at 7:15 pm |
        • Observer



          January 16, 2014 at 7:31 pm |
      • RB

        Pro-life or pro-murder.

        January 16, 2014 at 7:18 pm |
        • TDM

          Hyperbole much?

          January 16, 2014 at 7:21 pm |
      • Russ

        @ Observer: read what I wrote GOP above. you are demonstrating my point. pro-life advocates would say so-called 'pro-choice' is 'anti-choice' for the child.

        again, these negative labels betray a particular perspective. it's better to stick to each group's self-designation.

        January 17, 2014 at 10:59 am |
        • Observer


          "it's better to stick to each group's self-designation."

          Not when they are misleading. Unless you are opposed to EVERY abortion, you are "pro-abortion".

          The ISSUE is CHOICE. You are either FOR choice or AGAINST choice. An embryo doesn't have a clue in the world what "Choice" is. It is the MOTHER that does.

          January 20, 2014 at 2:11 pm |
        • Russ

          @ Observer: your inability to even *hear* your opponents' point of view actually detracts from any points you might make.

          1) i am for choice – making the right choice. i think one choice is clearly better than another. this is not chocolate versus vanilla but life & death. hence the term "pro-life." but again, you're not hearing that – which is why your arguments fail to engage the most basic aspect of the divide here.

          where we disagree is not being "for choice" but the BASIS of one's choice. for example, take what you *agree* to be an example of pre-meditated murder. there are clearly choices before the murderer – so why is he/she held accountable for making the *wrong* choice?

          2) your entire argument for an "embryo" not having a choice is equally applicable for children under 1 year of age. but somehow i doubt you'd advocate that the mother's choice is the only one that matters in that case.

          3) you said "if you're not opposed to every abortion, you are 'pro-abortion'."
          that's like saying "if you're not opposed to every murder, you are pro-murder." even by your own definition of murder, that's ridiculous. would you argue that extreme self-defense makes someone pro-murder?

          SUM: your categories make dialogue functionally implausible. not only is a conversation genuinely engaging one another's points almost impossible (because of your refusal to hear differences), but the inability to admit a bias when it exists makes the conversation disingenuous from the outset. as i said before: you are demonstrating my original point.

          January 20, 2014 at 6:31 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      The appropriate labels are properly descriptive ones. I think anyone sane would want to be known as pro-life. Life is something most of us value dearly. But the term actually means anti-abortion to most people who are anti-abortion.

      Yes Russ, fetal life has value, but not superseding the value of a woman's right to control her own life.

      January 16, 2014 at 7:46 pm |
      • Russ

        @ TTTOO: i also would encourage you to read what i wrote GOP above (as I did for Observer). your response is inherently closed to your perspective. pro-life advocates would equally claim they are pro-choice... give the child a chance to have a choice.

        again, the entire debate runs back to a fundamental divide over what actually is happening here. the positive labels imply a negative reciprocal (how each sees his/her opponent: anti-choice of the mother vs. anti-life of the child). that's what is MOST descriptive here – but it ALSO why each group should be allowed to *self*-designate.

        selectively applying the negative label betrays a particular perspective. would you want to be labeled (in your own terms) "anti-fetal life"?

        January 17, 2014 at 11:05 am |
    • Saraswati

      Pro-life as a label implies to many a person who generally values life: vegetarian, opposes the death penalty, supports access to health care... The label applied to just abortion issues is not really applicable. Pronatalist would describe those generally pushing people to have more babies, but that isn't really what these folks are about either. They are simply anti-abortion.

      January 16, 2014 at 10:21 pm |
      • breathe deep

        I would go one step further and ascribe the term anti-choice.

        January 17, 2014 at 12:51 am |
        • Saraswati

          Anti-choice as a label has the same issue as Pro-life: it describes a wider belief than that to which it applies. Anti-abortionists do not oppose all choice, just this one in particular. The labels should be as accurate as possible "anti-abortion" and "pro-abortion-choice" or "pro-reproductive-choice". Most of the rest is just propaganda on each side.

          January 17, 2014 at 9:31 am |
      • breathe deep

        My mother had a choice, and she chose not to abort. Was that the right decision? Who's to say? That doesn't take away her right to choose.

        January 17, 2014 at 12:52 am |
        • Russ

          @ breathe deep: "who's to say?" you! do you seriously expect us to believe you have NO vested interest in that question?

          January 17, 2014 at 11:10 am |
      • Russ

        @ Saraswati: "pro-choice" in the hands of your opponents equally has that problem: it is "anti-child's choice."

        again, it is a failure to hear the argument of your opponents to selectively apply negative labels & disallow the reciprocal negative. journalism certainly should strive for at least an appearance of greater objectivity. why allow one group to self-designate but not the other?

        January 17, 2014 at 11:08 am |
  12. Alias

    @Reality #2
    You keep posting the failure rates of birth control AND saying that abortions would not be an issue if people used birth control.
    Could we have some consistency please?

    January 16, 2014 at 4:43 pm |
    • Reality # 2

      Read again, The Brutal Effects of Stupidity as obviously you missed the data on actual failure rates of condoms and The Pill vs. perfect use failure rates.

      January 16, 2014 at 4:58 pm |
      • You're a liar.

        Shut up. You can't regulate s.ex and never could. Tedious badger.

        January 16, 2014 at 5:25 pm |
      • Reality # 2

        o It is obvious that inte-rcourse and other se-xual activities are out of control with over one million abortions and 19 million cases of S-TDs per year in the USA alone.

        from the CDC-2006

        "Se-xually transmitted diseases (S-TDs) remain a major public health challenge in the United States. While substantial progress has been made in preventing, diagnosing, and treating certain S-TDs in recent years, CDC estimates that approximately 19 million new infections occur each year, almost half of them among young people ages 15 to 24.1 In addition to the physical and psychological consequences of S-TDs, these diseases also exact a tremendous economic toll. Direct medical costs as-sociated with S-TDs in the United States are estimated at up to $14.7 billion annually in 2006 dollars."

        How in the world do we get this situation under control? A pill to temporarily eliminate the s-ex drive would be a good start. (Andy Rooney of 60 Minutes, 4/18/2010 described them as anti-desire pills). And teenagers and young adults must be constantly reminded of the dangers of se-xual activity and that oral s-ex, birth control pills, co-ndoms and chast-ity belts are no protection against S-TDs. Might a list of those having a S-TD posted on the Internet help?-Said names would remain until the S-TD has been eliminated with verification by a doctor. Lists of s-exual predators are on-line. Is there a difference between these individuals and those having a ST-D having s-exual relations while infected???

        January 16, 2014 at 11:59 pm |
  13. Kelly

    Scaly a was offended that the protesters were called protesters, preferring the term "counselors". Sure.

    January 16, 2014 at 4:41 pm |
    • Kelly

      I read that. I laughed.
      Scalia is so....scalilian.

      Great name. 😉

      January 16, 2014 at 4:44 pm |
  14. vikingwoman

    Yes, people should be able to excercize their free speech! But when it becomes bullying, intimidation & people getting in your face, then it's not 'free speech'! Also, the people who are using the clinics for whatever reasons, have their free speech rights & have the right to not be accosted! This situation is not about pro-life or pro-choice, religious or free speech rights, but about being able to excercize ones free will without being bullied! The Scotus should recognize that!!

    January 16, 2014 at 4:04 pm |
    • Alias

      I think the real issue here is how the law was written.
      You have to go about restricting rights correctly, not just arrive at the correct balance.

      January 16, 2014 at 4:12 pm |
  15. CommonSensed

    Supreme Court punts!

    January 16, 2014 at 1:27 pm |
    • Nope

      Yeah, but it's late in the 4th qtr; they are winning 49 to 0; and looking at a 4th and 32.
      I'd punt too.

      January 16, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
  16. Yup

    Funny how silent the court is on the issue of "free speech zones" that keep protesters miles away from politicians.

    January 16, 2014 at 11:50 am |
    • You betcha

      You betcha. Funny how that doesn't apply to them.

      January 16, 2014 at 12:09 pm |
    • Kelly

      That's one of the arguments that the lawyer representing the WH used.

      Does the SCOTUS have a buffer zone?

      January 16, 2014 at 4:48 pm |
  17. Responding to the Pride

    "Congress shall make no law * * * abridging the freedom of speech(.)" Because the Mass. law is context driven, it most certainly will be struck down. (Why is this article here–it really isn't about religion?)

    January 16, 2014 at 11:45 am |
    • Responding to the Pride

      Oops.."content" driven.

      January 16, 2014 at 11:53 am |
    • Live4Him

      It is because the topic tends to be a hot button issue that many religious people feel strongly about (atheists and Christians).

      January 16, 2014 at 12:40 pm |
      • No Evidence

        Ya had to sneak that one in there didn't you. Atheists are not "religious people" Unless you are attempting to twist the definition of "atheist".

        January 16, 2014 at 1:52 pm |
        • Live4Him

          According to your definition. However, according to the dictionary, the US Supreme Court, and most people – it is.

          January 16, 2014 at 3:44 pm |
        • igaftr

          They and you are wrong.

          Theists believe in god, but theism is not in itself a religion.

          A-theism...does not believe in gods, which not believing in itself is not a religion.

          You yourself are an atheist, since you do NOT believe in thousands of gods... only YOUR one god. Is your NOT believing in Ra a religion,? of course not.

          January 16, 2014 at 4:09 pm |
        • Skippy P. Nutbudder

          "Religion: the service or worship of a god or the supernatural."

          No way atheism can be a religion.

          January 16, 2014 at 4:17 pm |
    • Nope

      Your understanding of the law is lacking.
      there are many restrictions on free speach.

      January 16, 2014 at 12:59 pm |
      • Nope

        And on free 'speech', too

        January 16, 2014 at 1:02 pm |
      • Live4Him

        But only when that benefits to the public out-weighs the restrictions on free speech. Obviously, there are doubts among the Justices that this law falls under this exception.

        January 16, 2014 at 1:23 pm |
        • Kelly

          This law concerns didn't only concern abortion facilities. A wise person will remember that.

          January 16, 2014 at 1:27 pm |
        • Kelly

          Well, that was sloppily written. Sorry.

          January 16, 2014 at 1:32 pm |
        • Live4Him


          What other places does it cover?

          January 16, 2014 at 3:48 pm |
        • Kelly

          Anywhere a 35' buffer zone is desired.

          January 16, 2014 at 4:36 pm |
      • Responding to the Pride

        My understanding is firmly intact thank you. (J.D. 20+ years practice). Content driven restrictions are almost never allowed. I'm not referring to strictly time, place and manner restrictions-the carved out exception noted by Scalia is the law's undoing (You have to read the whole article).

        January 16, 2014 at 1:32 pm |
    • No Evidence

      I the article is here because the religious attempt to change abortion laws based on their chosen brand of delusion.

      January 16, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
  18. palintwit

    If Sarah Palin wasn't such a selfish, self-centered cow she would've had that Trig aborted. Poor thing doesn't even know he's here.

    January 16, 2014 at 11:41 am |
    • Responding to the Pride

      Christ died for you too.

      January 16, 2014 at 11:55 am |
      • palintwit


        January 16, 2014 at 11:56 am |
      • Nope

        The jesus you sre referring to dies because he caused trouble at a festival, and the local governmant was not tollerant.

        January 16, 2014 at 12:39 pm |
    • igaftr

      Does Sarah Palin pay you to keep her name on blogs?
      No one else brings her up, only you...why are you so obsessed with her? Not so secret crush?

      January 16, 2014 at 12:02 pm |
      • palintwit

        No crush. But I do despise her and her kind.

        January 16, 2014 at 12:21 pm |
        • CommonSensed

          You are her mirror. You only have one message and stick to it no matter the facts or reality. Your fixation on her and her family borders on psychotic. Seek help.

          January 16, 2014 at 12:25 pm |
        • Responding to the Pride

          You despise her because she allowed Trig to be born? Do you despise everyone who knowingly allows a D.S. baby to be born? Sick. Twisted. Evil. Selfish. Empty. Lost.

          January 16, 2014 at 12:35 pm |
        • palintwit

          @ CommonSensed... I am a professional. Others come to me seeking help with their "fixations".

          January 16, 2014 at 12:36 pm |
        • igaftr

          So you decided to embrace the negativity. It is consuming you. Let it go. Especially on these blogs. No one else cares bout her.

          January 16, 2014 at 12:39 pm |
        • OTOH


          In effect, though, you are giving her free publicity and validation that she is at all important.

          An old saying, attributed to P.T. Barnum:
          "I don't care what the newspapers say about me as long as they spell my name right."

          January 16, 2014 at 12:48 pm |
        • You betcha

          Professional? Physician, heal thyself.

          January 16, 2014 at 1:10 pm |
        • palintwit


          January 16, 2014 at 2:03 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.