Taking on Ayn Rand and Objectivism on abortion: A moral atrocity cannot somehow be a political sacrament.

From September of 2012, this is me at Richard Nikoley’s FreeTheAnimal.com talking about abortion in the context of nominally egoistic moral philosophies.

Quoting a comment from Richard:

Greg Swann has the best and only valid argument counter abortion: you have to live with yourself. Can you? Are you going to celebrate that act? Are you going to adore yourself over it?

I was half-disappointed that the big-O Objectivists at the 21 Convention did not attend to me. My assumption is that they simply had no idea who I am, although it’s plausible that Diana Hsieh or someone has spread the word about me. But I was only half-disappointed because, as we both know from days of yore, some big-O Objectivists can get ugly when they’re cornered. This is not a criticism of the specific individuals there. Eric Daniels seemed like a sweet guy, and Yaron Brook was quite a bit less of a True Believer than I was expecting. Even so, I was happy to do my stuff unmolested.

But my argument about abortion is something the big-O Objectivists need to address:

Politically, as a matter of human liberty, other people’s families — or pets or property — are none of my damn business. But having an abortion, performing one, encouraging one or paying for it are all morally-reprehensible acts. They cannot advance or enhance your own self-adoration, and, necessarily, they must retard and diminish your self-love, in the immediate moment and enduringly thereafter. It is not even necessary to look for real-life evidence of this argument, but, of course, that evidence abounds.

Do you want to dispute this? If one abortion enhances your self-love a little, will six abortions cause you to love your self a whole lot more? How about strangling kittens? Whether you like it or not, seeing your self committing atrocities is abhorrent to your mind, and no amount of rationalizing self-destructive behavior will turn vices into virtues.

You could argue that abortion or exposure can be exigently necessary — as, for instance, in extreme emergencies or when your family is already starving to death. But even then, the action cannot make you love your self more and must make you love your self less. Again, existentially, in real life, there are no counter-examples. Too much the contrary.

By considering the issue solely as a matter of politics, Objectivism (and the entire pro-abortion movement) misses the real news, which is always the self. The rest of the world deliberately overlooks the obvious fact that every purposive human action is taken first and most fundamentally by the self upon the self, but Objectivism is a putatively egoistic philosophy. Papering over the uncontroverted anegoistic consequences of abortion — in order to make a political sacrament of a personal atrocity — is unacceptable.

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