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Are you a body part?

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles ) | May 08, 2003

Under US law, a pregnant woman can procure an abortion regardless of the father's wishes. But what if the father wants the abortion, and the woman resists? That's where the law gets complicated.

For a classic example, look at the gymnastic feats performed by Connecticut's Supreme Court, in a case involving a man who tried to make his girlfriend miscarry their child.

The court was in a quandary. If the baby is recognized as a baby, then the crime of abortion is obvious. If the baby isn't recognized as a baby, then what crime did the man commit?

The court's decision: The baby is a "body part," and the man's crime is akin to an unauthorized haircut.

Absurd? Absolutely! But if you start with an absurd premise-- that a baby is not a baby-- what other sort of conclusion can you reach?

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