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#1
Something I was wondering.

Lets say a guy kills one person on purpose. It could be while he was robbing a store and someone got in his way or something along those lines. Obviously some form of action should be brought to make sure he doesn't do this again. Now I think a lot of people here might say that if he killed not one, but two people during this, he should receive perhaps a more harsh punishment or course of action brought to him. After all, killing one life is just awful. Multiply that by 2, and it's much worse, and a whole list of reasons.

Do you think a person should get a harsher punishment if he kills a pregnant woman and her unborn baby, as opposed to just killing one person?

I don't think this is inherently an abortion argument, as I think it's pretty easy to believe that because he killed two people he should get a harsher punishment, while still supporting the pro-choice cause.

I personally think that it does matter where in the pregnancy she's at. If it's only been say 5 weeks into the pregnancy, I really don't think it's any worse than killing one person. If it's 8 or 9 months in the pregnancy, then I do think it is worse than killing one person. At that point it indisputably has sentience. As for what punishment should be brought, I'm still debating, and that's really a whole 'nother criminal justice argument that I don't feel like getting into this late.

Also, fetus' tend to be a pretty touchy subject, so if this thread is a bit too provoking (and abortion threads sometimes get locked) just say something and I'll delete it.
Last edited by The Madcap at Oct 1, 2010,
#2
I agree with you, if it is 5 weeks in it isn't really another person, if it is 8 months it should count as 2 people.
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#4
Well morally, I think it's 1 person if the woman doesn't know or if she intends to abort it, and 2 if she is aware and is planning on keeping it. Legally, however, I'm not sure.
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#5
Quote by rgrockr
Well morally, I think it's 1 person if the woman doesn't know or if she intends to abort it, and 2 if she is aware and is planning on keeping it. Legally, however, I'm not sure.

So if I get what you're saying you would consider someone who is 5 weeks old another person?
Assuming the mother wants to keep him.
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#6
But the mother would be dead so you wouldn't have a clue if she wanted it or not. Regardless if someone killed a pregnant woman, if there was no evidence she planned to abort then it should be treated as two because not only was the mother robbed of her life but also robbed of her child. What about the father? He lost his child too. At that point the killer should be tried for double homicide as well as punished for robbing the father of his child.
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#7
Quote by Ishiga
But the mother would be dead so you wouldn't have a clue if she wanted it or not. Regardless if someone killed a pregnant woman, if there was no evidence she planned to abort then it should be treated as two because not only was the mother robbed of her life but also robbed of her child. What about the father? He lost his child too. At that point the killer should be tried for double homicide as well as punished for robbing the father of his child.

That is silly, she probebly discussed it with her husbund or close friend and she set her mind on it.

A fetus who is 5 weeks old isn't a person yet, if you had a chicken egg would you call it a chick?
You would call it an egg.
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#8
I think the goal should be to rehabilitate the person rather than punish them. That way instead of losing 3 lives you end up just losing 2.
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#9
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
That is silly, she probebly discussed it with her husbund or close friend and she set her mind on it.

A fetus who is 5 weeks old isn't a person yet, if you had a chicken egg would you call it a chick?
You would call it an egg.

It's not hard to believe that the woman had not made up her mind yet, abortions can be given as late as the 24th week of pregnancy. 5 weeks in she still has theoretically 19 weeks to make up her mind. She may have also not told anybody she was pregnant. Both are very unique cases but it's still a possibility
#10
Just fry the bastard. I could care less why.

Back in my day we'd a strung him up by his toes and let the mountain lions have their way with him. And that would just be for shoplifting.
#11
Quote by LightxGrenade
It's not hard to believe that the woman had not made up her mind yet, abortions can be given as late as the 24th week of pregnancy. 5 weeks in she still has theoretically 19 weeks to make up her mind. She may have also not told anybody she was pregnant. Both are very unique cases but it's still a possibility

Well if it is a woman who for months has tried to get pregnant and finally became pregnant, you know that she will keep the baby because she has tried having one for a while.
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#12
If the guy didn't know she was pregnant, then no.
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what's the point in being "philiosophical"?

Interesting question...
#13
It depends on the fetus..


Did he died?
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#14
Quote by Vornik
If the guy didn't know she was pregnant, then no.

How would that change anything?
If he saw that she was pregnant would he suddenly just stop, put all the stuff he has stolen and leave?
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#15
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
How would that change anything?
If he saw that she was pregnant would he suddenly just stop, put all the stuff he has stolen and leave?



It matters because we don't punish people for things they have no control over. Taking one life is wrong almost all the time, but if the robber didn't know she was pregnant, than he is only choosing to take one life. Maybe he should still get punished for killing the child, but it isn't first degree murder.

Also, I don't think fetuses are people, the are the potential for people. So are sperm, but sperm doens't become a person without any action, a fetus does. So no, I don't think there should be a harsher punishment for killing a pregnant woman.
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#16
A fetus isn't a person.

<Cue abortion debate>

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That is silly, she probebly discussed it with her husbund or close friend and she set her mind on it.

A fetus who is 5 weeks old isn't a person yet, if you had a chicken egg would you call it a chick?
You would call it an egg.


Correct. I wouldn't call a chick a chick until it's out of the shell. I'm not calling a baby a baby until its passed the cervix. 8 month old fetus is a highly developed fetus, not a baby.
Last edited by Bearded_Seth at Oct 1, 2010,
#17
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
Well if it is a woman who for months has tried to get pregnant and finally became pregnant, you know that she will keep the baby because she has tried having one for a while.

Despite what anyone says, we never truly know what's going to happen until a person does it. I've had friends who were dead set on keeping a baby and ended up deciding an abortion was best and I've had friends who've thought they'd never have the kid and ended up keeping it.
Personally I think it should be counted as another life because you took away the possibility of life. The murder itself destroyed the possibility of that choice being made which should belong only to the parents since they're the ones that contributed the genetic material needed.
To be honest though, most laws aren't incredibly specific because a certain degree of ambiguity is needed in order to make laws work, they're usually blueprints that the judiciary system can use to prosecute people that's why we have varying degrees of prosecution for something that is essentially the same act. For example manslaughter and murder are both the act of killing under different circumstances.
I believe the outcome would be 1 count of murder and 1 count of manslaughter because it's questionable as to whether the killer knew the woman was pregnant.
#18
I think you shouldn't kill people at all, that's not rock 'n roll. Unless you kill yourself by doing it in a very mysterious way that you become a great legend.
#19
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
How would that change anything?
If he saw that she was pregnant would he suddenly just stop, put all the stuff he has stolen and leave?

Because people shouldn't be punished for non-intentional consequences of their actions. If she meant to kill her, then she should be punished for killing her. Her pregnancy is a factor beyond her control, and she shouldn't be reprimanded by society for being ignorant of some fact that she had no way of knowing. If she saw that the woman was pregnant and killed her anyways, then it would probably be fair to say that she intentionally killed 2 (or 1.5) people.
Quote by The_Sophist
It matters because we don't punish people for things they have no control over. Taking one life is wrong almost all the time, but if the robber didn't know she was pregnant, than he is only choosing to take one life. Maybe he should still get punished for killing the child, but it isn't first degree murder.

Also, I don't think fetuses are people, the are the potential for people. So are sperm, but sperm doens't become a person without any action, a fetus does. So no, I don't think there should be a harsher punishment for killing a pregnant woman.

This is different than a sperm, because presumably the expectant mother had a family who was waiting and planning for this child to finish gestating. It's an entirely different issue than abortion when the baby is wanted. Particularly from the perspective of the father -- as far as he is concerned, it's a bun in the oven. A bun in the oven is a bun.

It would be interesting if the robber was the father, though.
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what's the point in being "philiosophical"?

Interesting question...
#20
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Because people shouldn't be punished for non-intentional consequences of their actions.


So drunk drivers are cool then?
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#21
Quote by LightxGrenade
Despite what anyone says, we never truly know what's going to happen until a person does it. I've had friends who were dead set on keeping a baby and ended up deciding an abortion was best and I've had friends who've thought they'd never have the kid and ended up keeping it.
Personally I think it should be counted as another life because you took away the possibility of life. The murder itself destroyed the possibility of that choice being made which should belong only to the parents since they're the ones that contributed the genetic material needed.
To be honest though, most laws aren't incredibly specific because a certain degree of ambiguity is needed in order to make laws work, they're usually blueprints that the judiciary system can use to prosecute people that's why we have varying degrees of prosecution for something that is essentially the same act. For example manslaughter and murder are both the act of killing under different circumstances.
I believe the outcome would be 1 count of murder and 1 count of manslaughter because it's questionable as to whether the killer knew the woman was pregnant.

Look at the bolded part, Possibility of life, it isn't a life yet it's a possibility.
sperm has a possibility of life, so when someone masturbates he should be punished?
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#22
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
So if I get what you're saying you would consider someone who is 5 weeks old another person?
Assuming the mother wants to keep him.

Not at that moment, but you're removing what would have been a person. Basically I'm saying a wanted, conceived baby is a person. I dunno, I can't think straight right now and I'm having trouble describing it. Basically the pro-life argument modified to accept abortion.
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#23
Quote by Zombee
So drunk drivers are cool then?

Drunk drivers intentionally drove drunk, didn't they?
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what's the point in being "philiosophical"?

Interesting question...
#24
Quote by Zombee
So drunk drivers are cool then?


Driving when drunk is an obvious fault of the person. Let's say a person trips and lands on the road in front of your car and dies, thats called manslaughter. I don't think it's fair for someone to get jailtime for a complete accident.
#25
[quote="8 month old fetus is a highly developed fetus, not a baby.[/QUOTE"] But it's alive in every way that humans classify an organism as living. It has cognitive brain function to a certain extent, it has a heart beat, it carries on metabolic processes. Whether you call it a baby or a fetus, you cannot deny the fact that it is alive at that point, at least in a scientific sense.
#26
Quote by LightxGrenade
But it's alive in every way that humans classify an organism as living. It has cognitive brain function to a certain extent, it has a heart beat, it carries on metabolic processes. Whether you call it a baby or a fetus, you cannot deny the fact that it is alive at that point, at least in a scientific sense.


Still isn't a person.
#27
If the mother was planning on keeping the baby, then yes, i do believe it should be given a harsher punishment.

(But at the same time, i'm pro choice, so does this make me hypocritical? )

With that said though, there is no real way of proving that the mother wanted to keep the baby. especially if it was quite early in.

EDIT: That said though, i believe that murder should warrant life imprisonment anyway, with the option for parole after 30 years or so, depending on a number of circumstances etc. Also, i do not believe in the death penalty (except for maybe massive crimes against humanity, like genocide etc), so there is not much worse you can do to someone, other than life in jail.

I get the impressuion i have contradicted myself many times in this post
Last edited by jimmy_neutron at Oct 1, 2010,
#28
Quote by Zombee
So drunk drivers are cool then?

The punishment for driving whilst drunk should be the same regardless of whether you have the misfortune to kill someone or not.

EDIT:

With that said though, there is no real way of proving that the mother wanted to keep the baby. especially if it was quite early in.
And even less ways for the robber to know that she wanted to keep it.
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Last edited by FrenchyFungus at Oct 1, 2010,
#29
Quote by Bearded_Seth
Still isn't a person.

Neither are dogs but Michael Vick went to jail for killing a bunch of them. Laws don't just protect human lives, they protect life in general
#30
I came in here thinking this was about someone killing one man and a midget.

Must say I'm disappointed...
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#31
Quote by LightxGrenade
Neither are dogs but Michael Vick went to jail for killing a bunch of them. Laws don't just protect human lives, they protect life in general

Dogs may not be people but they are still life, unlike a 5 week old fetus the dogs communicate with people, they help people and alot of more useful stuff, a dog is a life, a fetus WILL be a life.
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#32
Quote by Bearded_Seth
Still isn't a person.


If the potential is there then the suffering is the same.
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If only you could back that statement up.
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#33
Quote by LightxGrenade
Neither are dogs but Michael Vick went to jail for killing a bunch of them. Laws don't just protect human lives, they protect life in general

Uh. Not really. Vick got 2 years for multiple murders as well as felony gambling and illegal money shit.
Quote by BeefWellington

what's the point in being "philiosophical"?

Interesting question...
#34
Punishment shouldn't vary according to the result imo. You could have two situations, one with an armed robbery where the robber shoots one person who impedes him, and another situation, where the robber has to shoot three people who impede him.

When both have shown the same intent, then why is it that one gets a harsher punishment? If prison is used for rehabilitation, then shouldn't it take both the same amount of time? I'm aware that there are implications to this, but that's my view.
#35
Quote by Zombee
If the potential is there then the suffering is the same.

What? No, the foetus does not suffer in any way.
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#36
Quote by LightxGrenade
Neither are dogs but Michael Vick went to jail for killing a bunch of them. Laws don't just protect human lives, they protect life in general


We're animals just like dogs, try not to forget that. They suffer and have intelligent thought. A fetus is a group of cells slowly becoming a person. As a fetus you're about as self-aware as a tin opener.
#37
Quote by Zombee
If the potential is there then the suffering is the same.

Potential, it is potential it isnt a life yet, refer to my egg example from the first page.
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#38
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
Look at the bolded part, Possibility of life, it isn't a life yet it's a possibility.
sperm has a possibility of life, so when someone masturbates he should be punished?

Sex isn't illegal but rape is, because the victim had that choice of whether they wanted sex or not taken away. Sperm is different- it's a single cell, a fetus (if kept for long enough) is technically alive and even if it isn't, you took that choice away from a person. The sperm is just a single cell until combined with something else, a fetus if left unharmed will inevitably result in a child. But I do understand what you are getting at.
Perhaps is because I'm trying to empathize for the person that I see it as another life being taken. If it was my pregnant wife and she was murdered you're god damn right I'd want that bastard charged for two counts of murder. It's easy to stay technical until it's someone you care about involved.
I'm not saying my argument isn't without it's flaws but your argument has flaws as well
#39
Quote by LightxGrenade
Sex isn't illegal but rape is, because the victim had that choice of whether they wanted sex or not taken away. Sperm is different- it's a single cell, a fetus (if kept for long enough) is technically alive and even if it isn't, you took that choice away from a person. The sperm is just a single cell until combined with something else, a fetus if left unharmed will inevitably result in a child. But I do understand what you are getting at.
Perhaps is because I'm trying to empathize for the person that I see it as another life being taken. If it was my pregnant wife and she was murdered you're god damn right I'd want that bastard charged for two counts of murder. It's easy to stay technical until it's someone you care about involved.
I'm not saying my argument isn't without it's flaws but your argument has flaws as well

Be more circular.
Quote by BeefWellington

what's the point in being "philiosophical"?

Interesting question...
#40
Quote by LightxGrenade
Sex isn't illegal but rape is, because the victim had that choice of whether they wanted sex or not taken away. Sperm is different- it's a single cell, a fetus (if kept for long enough) is technically alive and even if it isn't, you took that choice away from a person. The sperm is just a single cell until combined with something else, a fetus if left unharmed will inevitably result in a child. But I do understand what you are getting at.
Perhaps is because I'm trying to empathize for the person that I see it as another life being taken. If it was my pregnant wife and she was murdered you're god damn right I'd want that bastard charged for two counts of murder. It's easy to stay technical until it's someone you care about involved.
I'm not saying my argument isn't without it's flaws but your argument has flaws as well

If something like this happened to someone he would want the murderer to sit for double murder obviously, he isnt objective about his punishment because he lost a pregnant wife.
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