Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

A place to bring a contemplative / Dharmic perspective and opinions to current events, politics and economics.
Presto Kensho
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Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Presto Kensho » Fri Mar 20, 2020 10:06 pm

I have voted Democrat my entire adult life, but now the Democratic Party has shifted so far in favor of abortion that I can no longer vote Democrat. The motto of the Democratic Party used to be that abortion should be safe, legal and rare.

Now Democratic politicians like Chuck Schumer take part in rallies where abortion is loudly cheered and judges are threatened for supporting any sort of restriction on abortion.

All the major 2020 Democratic presidential candidates support repealing the Hyde amendment, which prevents federal tax dollars from being spent on abortion. This includes Joe Biden, who for decades voted to keep the Hyde amendment.

Democrats in states like New York and Virginia have also proposed laws to end all restrictions on abortion, up until the point of birth, and Democrats in the Senate recently blocked a bill to protect children born alive from botched abortions.

An engaged pro-life Buddhist might practice activism by donating money to organizations like the Susan B. Anthony List, which campaigns for female pro-life congressional candidates.

Another option is for pro-life Buddhists to donate or volunteer at a crisis pregnancy center, some of which do not have a Christian affiliation. Crisis pregnancy centers help women in hard times, so they can have the choice not to abort a child.

There is also the organization Buddhists for Life, which takes part in pro-life rallies and other activities. Buddhism traditionally teaches that abortion is the taking of an innocent human life.

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mikenz66
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by mikenz66 » Sat Mar 21, 2020 1:51 am

I find issues such as abortion and, in particular, voluntary euthanasia, very personally problematic. I dislike the assumptions they bring, which is that if life is too difficult, it might as well be over.

However, this is my moral choice. I have the right to argue against such things, but I don't think I have the right to force my view on others. And I would not like to see such things driven underground, and made more dangerous.

I feel the same about a number of other issues, such as alcohol, other recreational drugs, and prostitution. Trying to ban them just drives them underground, fills up prisons, and makes money for gangs, etc. Working towards alleviating the causes of drug abuse, for example, would be more useful.

:heart:
Mike

Presto Kensho
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Presto Kensho » Sat Mar 21, 2020 2:03 am

Pro-choice used to mean the government staying out of abortion. Now Democrats and pro-choice activists insist on taxpayer funding for abortion. If one is opposed to abortion on moral grounds, why should one's tax dollars fund it?

Miorita
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Miorita » Sun Mar 22, 2020 5:33 am

Edit: This is bad what is happening in the world.
People don't tell you the truth, you have to discover it yourself.

For better or for worse, Donald Trump changed the way politics are done.
He inherited a system that was not moving, not helping him, probably not helping the little me.
That's why he tore down every makeshift of Obama's.

I don't know about Donald Trump but I didn't like Obama.
I can't look at the people, I can only look at them and their message.
I already committed to have no abortion. Why is this important and why they both approach it?
If you want to reconcile yourself with your past, you have to allow nature to take its course.
It's a thing of the beauty to let nature take its course. That's what I should have been teaching.
Not this nonsense with pills and visualizations!
Some people are good at visualization, some are not - what can you do?
Then, why should I select for the visualization when it's not even my given, but the qualities of the elements?

Thanks for reading/listening to my rambling and for having me here!
Om Tare Tuttare Ture Soha - they say she helps remove obstacles
Relax! Do your best!

justsit
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by justsit » Sun Mar 22, 2020 1:17 pm

Presto Kensho wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 2:03 am
Pro-choice used to mean the government staying out of abortion. Now Democrats and pro-choice activists insist on taxpayer funding for abortion. If one is opposed to abortion on moral grounds, why should one's tax dollars fund it?
"Planned Parenthood has received federal funding since 1970, when President Richard Nixon signed into law the Family Planning Services and Population Research Act, amending the Public Health Service Act. Title X of that law provides funding for family planning services, including contraception and family planning information. The law had support from both Republicans and Democrats.[73] Nixon described Title X funding as based on the premise that "no American woman should be denied access to family planning assistance because of her economic condition."[74] "

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planned_Parenthood. The cited numbered references are found in the link.

Presto Kensho
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Presto Kensho » Sun Mar 22, 2020 6:46 pm

Because of the Hyde amendment, Planned Parenthood is not allowed to use the tax dollars it receives for abortion services. Democrats today promise to repeal the Hyde amendment if they win the next election.

justsit
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by justsit » Sun Mar 22, 2020 9:10 pm

"Currently, 17 states extend abortion coverage to women enrolled in Medicaid through their own budgets, and 6 states extend abortion coverage when a woman's health is at risk." These are state funds, as noted, not federal; still, supported by tax dollars.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyde_Amendment

There are also exemptions in most states for abortions in cases of rape or incest.

Also, Planned Parenthood provides free or low cost morning after pills, which may actually prevent a fertilized embryo from implantation.

Nothing in politics is completely black and white; not all Republicans are "pro-life," nor are all Democrats "pro-choice."
Democrats can say they'll repeal the Hyde Amendment, but that's a far cry from actually repealing it.

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Ceisiwr
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Ceisiwr » Mon Mar 23, 2020 12:18 am

mikenz66 wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 1:51 am
I find issues such as abortion and, in particular, voluntary euthanasia, very personally problematic. I dislike the assumptions they bring, which is that if life is too difficult, it might as well be over.

However, this is my moral choice. I have the right to argue against such things, but I don't think I have the right to force my view on others. And I would not like to see such things driven underground, and made more dangerous.

I feel the same about a number of other issues, such as alcohol, other recreational drugs, and prostitution. Trying to ban them just drives them underground, fills up prisons, and makes money for gangs, etc. Working towards alleviating the causes of drug abuse, for example, would be more useful.

:heart:
Mike

Hello Mike,

I feel there is a false equivalency there. If I take drugs that’s on me. Having an abortion involves the destruction of another life. Personally I think abortion should be illegal after 8 weeks, as from a secular POV an argument can be made for the foetus having a right to life. From a religious POV I’m opposed to abortion from conception, but as I can’t form a secular argument for that I can’t argue for abortion being totally illegal.

Metta

:)

Presto Kensho
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Presto Kensho » Mon Mar 23, 2020 5:00 pm

The Buddha's teachings for both monastics and laypeople forbid abortion as the taking of an innocent human life:
The Vinaya
The Training Rules of Discipline for Monks and Nuns – to encourage the abortion is a major serious offense – a parajika offense that leads to expulsion of that person from the Sangha (the Community of Monks and Nuns), makes a monk or a nun defeated and can no longer be called a son or daughter of the Buddha. The Buddha was that serious about not engaging in nor encouraging abortion.
An ordained monk should not deliberately deprive a living thing of life, even if it is only an ant.

Whatever monk intentionally deprives a human being of life – even to the extent of causing an abortion – he becomes no longer a (true) recluse (samana), not a son of the Sakyans [i.e., no longer a follower of the Buddha].

As a flat stone, broken apart, is something which cannot be put back together again, so a monk who has deliberately deprived a human being of life is no longer a (true) recluse, not a son of the Sakyans. This is something not to be done by you as long as life lasts.
Remember, the precepts are protective – so this rule protects the baby’s life.

Now some people may say – oh, the first Sutra is for Bodhisattvas, the Vinaya is for monks and nuns, I am just a lay person. So what is the Buddha’s advice to lay people if they want to rise up to upholding the precepts in order to follow the Buddha’s path?

The Sutra of Precepts for Lay People

In the Sutra of the Upasaka Precepts, the Buddha says this for laypeople who uphold this precept:
If one destroys an embryo inside a woman by making her take poison, one is guilty of 2 sins – the act [of killing] and its associated elements.
So now we have the Buddha’s clear instructions on this and how serious of an offense it is.
https://essenceofbuddhism.wordpress.com ... -abortion/
Having said this, why should someone who believes in traditional Buddhist teachings be forced to pay for an abortion through their tax dollars?

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DNS
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by DNS » Mon Mar 23, 2020 5:28 pm

What about Malcolm's post over at DWM?

https://dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.php?f ... 89#p524505
Malcolm wrote:Your statement is false.

In Buddhism, abortion is only considered the taking of a human life after the 19th week. How do we know this? A bhikṣu etc., only commits parajika, a complete defeat, if he causes an abortion after the 19th week. Prior to that, causing an abortion is not considered killing a human being.

All of the arguments against abortion hinge on religious beliefs. Therefore, they violate the establishment clause of the first amendment
19 weeks is about 5 months pregnancy, which is around the time a fetus becomes viable, that is able to survive if outside the womb (born premature). It might be a sort of "middle way" position between the 2 camps on abortion, from a secular viewpoint.

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DNS
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by DNS » Mon Mar 23, 2020 5:31 pm

Theravada tends to be more conservative and pro-life from conception.

http://www.buddhisma2z.com/content.php?id=3

justsit
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by justsit » Mon Mar 23, 2020 6:27 pm

Presto Kensho wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 5:00 pm
The Buddha's teachings for both monastics and laypeople forbid abortion as the taking of an innocent human life:
Then, as a Buddhist monastic or layperson, you should not have an abortion. What others do is up to them.
... why should someone who believes in traditional Buddhist teachings be forced to pay for an abortion through their tax dollars?
For the same reason that "your" tax dollars go to finance war, nuclear weapons, and environmental degradation. That is, the US is a capitalist democracy, which is only nominally "Christian;" Buddhist principles are not a governmental consideration. The federal government allocates tax dollars according to directives of Congress and the Supreme Court.

Assuming you are a US citizen - You can always choose to think that YOUR tax dollars go to education or free lunches for public school kids or another worthwhile endeavor. You can also choose not to pay taxes, in which case there are consequences, which you may decide are or are not worth it. Indeed, there are people who go jail rather than violate their own consciences.

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Ceisiwr
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Ceisiwr » Mon Mar 23, 2020 7:48 pm

Greetings Justsit,

Then, as a Buddhist monastic or layperson, you should not have an abortion. What others do is up to them.
Abortion isn’t a victimless crime, like taking drugs. We have laws against the killing of innocent beings. That should apply to the foetus too imo.

Metta

:)

justsit
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by justsit » Mon Mar 23, 2020 9:11 pm

Ceisiwr wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 7:48 pm
Abortion isn’t a victimless crime, like taking drugs. We have laws against the killing of innocent beings. That should apply to the foetus too imo.
As Mike pointed out earlier, abortions will take place with or without laws against it. Having prohibition merely pushes the procedure into the back alleys, where it was for years, and more women will die. A bit ironic, really; no one seems to care about their lives.

Presto Kensho
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Presto Kensho » Mon Mar 23, 2020 10:18 pm

justsit wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 6:27 pm
Presto Kensho wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 5:00 pm
The Buddha's teachings for both monastics and laypeople forbid abortion as the taking of an innocent human life:
Then, as a Buddhist monastic or layperson, you should not have an abortion. What others do is up to them.
... why should someone who believes in traditional Buddhist teachings be forced to pay for an abortion through their tax dollars?
For the same reason that "your" tax dollars go to finance war, nuclear weapons, and environmental degradation. That is, the US is a capitalist democracy, which is only nominally "Christian;" Buddhist principles are not a governmental consideration. The federal government allocates tax dollars according to directives of Congress and the Supreme Court.

Assuming you are a US citizen - You can always choose to think that YOUR tax dollars go to education or free lunches for public school kids or another worthwhile endeavor. You can also choose not to pay taxes, in which case there are consequences, which you may decide are or are not worth it. Indeed, there are people who go jail rather than violate their own consciences.
As a Buddhist American citizen, do I have a right to oppose political candidates who promise to repeal the Hyde amendment?

Presto Kensho
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Presto Kensho » Mon Mar 23, 2020 10:19 pm

justsit wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 9:11 pm
Ceisiwr wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 7:48 pm
Abortion isn’t a victimless crime, like taking drugs. We have laws against the killing of innocent beings. That should apply to the foetus too imo.
As Mike pointed out earlier, abortions will take place with or without laws against it. Having prohibition merely pushes the procedure into the back alleys, where it was for years, and more women will die. A bit ironic, really; no one seems to care about their lives.
If the government should stay out of abortion, why should tax dollars pay for it? If women have a right to an abortion, why doesn't the taxpayer have a right to not fund it? Why is the woman's freedom of choice more important than the taxpayer's?

justsit
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by justsit » Mon Mar 23, 2020 10:53 pm

"As a Buddhist American citizen, do I have a right to oppose political candidates who promise to repeal the Hyde amendment?"
Yes.

The only control taxpayers have over the use of funds is voting for candidates who support their point of view. No individual taxpayer has a "right" to control how the money is used - that is not how the US, state governments, and courts have been designed and legislated. If you are not happy with that, take it up with your elected representatives.

Miorita
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Miorita » Mon Mar 23, 2020 11:17 pm

DNS wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 5:28 pm
What about Malcolm's post over at DWM?

https://dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.php?f ... 89#p524505
Malcolm wrote:Your statement is false.

In Buddhism, abortion is only considered the taking of a human life after the 19th week. How do we know this? A bhikṣu etc., only commits parajika, a complete defeat, if he causes an abortion after the 19th week. Prior to that, causing an abortion is not considered killing a human being.

All of the arguments against abortion hinge on religious beliefs. Therefore, they violate the establishment clause of the first amendment
19 weeks is about 5 months pregnancy, which is around the time a fetus becomes viable, that is able to survive if outside the womb (born premature). It might be a sort of "middle way" position between the 2 camps on abortion, from a secular viewpoint.
An abortion before the 5 months aleatory date is still murder of something beautiful that got green to go from the Holy Encounter on.

It usually is like in Romeo and Juliet: the universe conspires to separate the 2 lovers since it gets jealous of their love.

That's what master Shakespeare says.

:anjali:
Om Tare Tuttare Ture Soha - they say she helps remove obstacles
Relax! Do your best!

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Ceisiwr
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by Ceisiwr » Mon Mar 23, 2020 11:54 pm

justsit wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 9:11 pm
Ceisiwr wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 7:48 pm
Abortion isn’t a victimless crime, like taking drugs. We have laws against the killing of innocent beings. That should apply to the foetus too imo.
As Mike pointed out earlier, abortions will take place with or without laws against it. Having prohibition merely pushes the procedure into the back alleys, where it was for years, and more women will die. A bit ironic, really; no one seems to care about their lives.
Murder will take place with or without laws against it. Doesn’t mean we don’t have laws against it 🤷🏻‍♂️. The religious rule is not to kill a living being. The secular rule is not to violate the right to life. A woman having an abortion violates both, therefore it should be classed as murder. If a woman then goes to a back alley to have an abortion and dies that’s on her and the person performing the abortion.

Metta

justsit
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Re: Pro-life Buddhists & 2020 Democrats

Post by justsit » Tue Mar 24, 2020 12:26 am

Since I have nothing more to add to this discussion, I'll bow out.

Sarva mangalam!

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