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Sunday, February 18, 2018

Links - 18th February 2018 (1)

Australia offers to help US with gun reform - "While gun violence has not disappeared, there have been no further mass shootings, in contrast to the United States where they remain common. A survey published in 2016, which examined intentional firearm death rates from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, found gun-related deaths and suicides had declined since 1997... All guns in Australia must now be registered, although many arrive illegally from overseas through organised syndicates and tens of thousands of the weapons are still believed to be on the streets."

Student 'forced to leave' university after saying extremist Islamic groups kill LGBTI people - "‘The topic of one student being engaged to a Muslim came up. It was alleged that you made offensive comments about Islam to that student.’"

George R.R. Martin Is Tired of Marvel's Movie Bad Guys Already - ""I am tired of this Marvel movie trope where the bad guy has the same powers as the hero," he wrote. "The Hulk fought the Abomination, who is just a bad Hulk. Spider-Man fights Venom, who is just a bad Spider-Man. Iron Man fights Ironmonger, a bad Iron Man. Yawn. I want more films where the hero and the villain have wildly different powers. That makes the action much more interesting.""

The Data That Turned the World Upside Down - "Remarkably reliable deductions could be drawn from simple online actions. For example, men who "liked" the cosmetics brand MAC were slightly more likely to be gay; one of the best indicators for heterosexuality was "liking" Wu-Tang Clan. Followers of Lady Gaga were most probably extroverts, while those who "liked" philosophy tended to be introverts. While each piece of such information is too weak to produce a reliable prediction, when tens, hundreds, or thousands of individual data points are combined, the resulting predictions become really accurate. Kosinski and his team tirelessly refined their models. In 2012, Kosinski proved that on the basis of an average of 68 Facebook "likes" by a user, it was possible to predict their skin color (with 95 percent accuracy), their sexual orientation (88 percent accuracy), and their affiliation to the Democratic or Republican party (85 percent). But it didn't stop there. Intelligence, religious affiliation, as well as alcohol, cigarette and drug use, could all be determined. From the data it was even possible to deduce whether someone's parents were divorced. The strength of their modeling was illustrated by how well it could predict a subject's answers. Kosinski continued to work on the models incessantly: before long, he was able to evaluate a person better than the average work colleague, merely on the basis of ten Facebook "likes." Seventy "likes" were enough to outdo what a person's friends knew, 150 what their parents knew, and 300 "likes" what their partner knew. More "likes" could even surpass what a person thought they knew about themselves... Kosinski and his team could now ascribe Big Five values based purely on how many profile pictures a person has on Facebook, or how many contacts they have (a good indicator of extraversion). But we also reveal something about ourselves even when we're not online. For example, the motion sensor on our phone reveals how quickly we move and how far we travel (this correlates with emotional instability). Our smartphone, Kosinski concluded, is a vast psychological questionnaire that we are constantly filling out, both consciously and unconsciously"

10 Ways Reading The Silmarillion Makes The Lord of the Rings Better, Part 1 - "there’s one thing the elves in the Third Age don’t talk about — that almost everything bad that happens in Middle-Earth happens because of elves. One elf in particular: Fëanor. Fëanor was one of the sons of Finwë, one of the three original elf kings. Fëanor had it all, looks, skill, strength. He created the Silmarils (as well as the Palantiri, more on those later), three gems that contained the last remnant of the light of the two lamps the Valar used to light Valinor. They were incredibly powerful and beautiful gems, and Fëanor grew proud and jealous, hiding them and getting paranoid that the Valar would steal them. There’s a lot more to the story, but basically Fëanor convinced his followers to leave Valinor for Middle-Earth, and in doing so they murdered another group of elves to steal their ships. And Fëanor made his sons swear an oath that they would never allow anyone else to have the Silmarils. This oath led to countless betrayals and tragedies, as the Sons of Fëanor turned against their fellow elves, all to get their hands on those gems. All this served to aid Melkor (later known as Morgoth), the dark and evil Valar that spent his entire existence working to destroy anything beautiful the Valar made."

Why We Should Resist Calling the Las Vegas Shooting “Terrorism” - "There is no single definition of terrorism, but most scholars agree on several broad criteria. The Irish political scientist Louise Richardson, who now serves as the vice-chancellor at Oxford, has set out seven key characteristics of a terrorist act: it is politically inspired; it involves violence or the threat of violence; it aims to send a message rather than defeat an enemy; the act and the victim have symbolic significance; the act is carried out by “substate groups” rather than state actors; the victims of the violence are distinct from the audience for which the terrorist’s message is intended; and the act deliberately targets civilians. The F.B.I. uses a much less precise definition of terrorism, but it, too, specifies that the perpetrator must be pursuing a political objective... Part of the appeal of claiming an affiliation with, say, ISIS, is that it automatically raises a potential terrorist from thug to enemy combatant"
"almost universally, the muslims on my fb who commented on the vegas incident are focused on the "why the shooter is not called a terrorist" angle
not the horror of the tragedy
not what should be done to prevent it moving forward
but instead... omg they nv call him a terrorist... it is so unfair to ME"

OMG! It Started in 1917 With a Letter to Churchill - WSJ - "John Arbuthnot Fisher (Jacky to his friends), a septuagenarian who had served as the Royal Navy’s first sea lord in World War I, was the first known person to rattle off “OMG”—and not some texting teen... “People who are decrying the demise of the English language through its terrible practice of initializing neologisms regard it as characteristic of the early 21st century,” Katherine Martin, head of U.S. dictionaries at Oxford University Press, told me. But the U.S. has had its own abbreviatory fads, going back to the late 1830s when a Boston newspaper first published “O.K.” as shorthand for the jokily misspelled “oll korrect” (“all correct”)"

First, They Came for the Biologists - WSJ - "Who would have guessed that when America cleaved, the left would get the National Football League and the right would get uncontested custody of science?... Extremists on the left are going after science. Why? Because science seeks truth, and truth isn’t always convenient... Postmodernism, and specifically its offspring, critical race theory, have abandoned rigor and replaced it with “lived experience” as the primary source of knowledge. Little credence is given to the idea of objective reality... In a meeting with administrators at Evergreen last May, protesters called, on camera, for college president George Bridges to target STEM faculty in particular for “antibias” training, on the theory that scientists are particularly prone to racism. That’s obvious to them because scientists persist in using terms like “genetic” and “phenotype” when discussing humans. Mr. Bridges offers: “[What] we are working towards is, bring ’em in, train ’em, and if they don’t get it, sanction them.” Despite the benevolent-sounding label, the equity movement is a highly virulent social pathogen, an autoimmune disease of the academy. Diversity offices, the very places that were supposed to address bigotry and harassment, have been weaponized and repurposed to catch and cull all who disagree. And the attack on STEM is no accident. Once scientists are silenced, narratives can be fully unhooked from any expectation that they be put to the test of evidence... Science creates space for the free exchange of ideas, for discovery, for progress. What has postmodernism done for you lately?"

Modern Liberalism’s False Obsession With Civil War Monuments - WSJ - "liberals make a fetish of Civil War monuments because it feeds their hallowed slavery narrative, which posits that racial inequality today is mainly a legacy of the country’s slave past. One problem with these assumptions about slavery’s effects on black outcomes today is that they are undermined by what blacks were able to accomplish in the first hundred years after their emancipation, when white racism was rampant and legal and blacks had bigger concerns than Robert E. Lee’s likeness in a public park. Today, slavery is still being blamed for everything from black broken families to high crime rates in black neighborhoods to racial gaps in education, employment and income. Yet outcomes in all of those areas improved markedly in the immediate aftermath of slavery and continued to improve for decades... Are today’s black violent-crime rates a legacy of slavery and Jim Crow or of something else? Unfortunately, that’s a question few people on the left will even entertain."

Why the Left Can’t Let Go of Racism - WSJ - "The writer Walker Percy once wrote of the “sweetness at the horrid core of bad news.” It’s hard to witness the media’s oddly exhilarated reaction to, say, the death of Trayvon Martin without applying Percy’s insight. A black boy is dead. But not all is lost. It looks like racism. What makes racism so sweet? Today it empowers. Racism was once just racism, a terrible bigotry that people nevertheless learned to live with, if not as a necessary evil then as an inevitable one. But the civil-rights movement, along with independence movements around the world, changed that. The ’60s recast racism in the national consciousness as an incontrovertible sin, the very worst of all social evils... redemption—paying off the nation’s sins—became the moral imperative of a new political and cultural liberalism. President Lyndon Johnson turned redemption into a kind of activism: the Great Society, the War on Poverty, school busing, liberalized welfare policies, affirmative action, and so on."

The Case for Uniform Dressing - WSJ - "Longing for the ease with which her male colleagues dressed, she went shopping and defined her own work look: a stylish white silk blouse, black slacks and a thin leather necktie... If you feel yourself rebelling against the uniform concept, consider the approach of the late author Jackie Collins, who kept a closet full of dozens of black tank tops in her Beverly Hills home. She rotated them beneath jackets she had custom-made in varied colors and fabrics, but always with the same sharp-shouldered silhouette... People who have settled on personal uniforms say their co-workers—and even their families—rarely seem to notice them. The effect, much as with school uniforms, is to bring the focus to the person rather than the clothes. “No one ever talks about what I wear, except my shoes, and that’s exactly how I want it,” says Ms. Engberg. Ms. Kahl negotiates a discount for buying in bulk, 15 blouses at a time. “You have to ask for the manager,” she says, noting that she spends less in the long run by not shopping for work clothes for 18 to 24 months.

Happiness in modern society: Why intelligence and ethnic composition matter - "Recent developments in evolutionary psychology suggest that living among others of the same ethnicity might make individuals happier and further that such an effect of the ethnic composition on life satisfaction may be stronger among less intelligent individuals. Data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health showed that White Americans had significantly greater life satisfaction than all other ethnic groups in the US and this was largely due to the fact that they were the majority ethnic group; minority Americans who lived in counties where they were the numerical majority had just as much life satisfaction as White Americans did. Further, the association between ethnic composition and life satisfaction was significantly stronger among less intelligent individuals. The results suggest two important factors underlying life satisfaction and highlight the utility of integrating happiness research and evolutionary psychology."

(9) Why do societies with higher average cognitive ability have lower income inequality? The role of redistributive policies - "Past studies suggest that, across nations, the average cognitive ability of a population is negatively associated with income inequality; societies with higher average cognitive ability tend to have lower levels of income inequality. However, it is not clear why. This paper proposes that social transfers from the wealthy to the poor may be a major mechanism by which some societies achieve lower income inequality than others, because more intelligent individuals may be more likely to have a preference for such transfers. The empirical results in this study replicate the earlier finding that societies with higher cognitive ability have lower levels of income inequality, but the association is entirely mediated by social transfers. Social transfers therefore appear to be the primary mechanism by which societies with higher levels of cognitive ability achieve lower income inequality"

Same-sex twins are taller and heavier than opposite-sex twins (but only if breastfed): Possible evidence for sex bias in human breast milk

Student: Mainstream feminism 'excludes' many feminists - "Noa Rubin, a dual-degree student at Barnard College and the Jewish Theological Seminary, recounts the disillusionment she felt when she learned that many of Columbia’s clubs target Israel. “As a Jewish student who identifies as a Zionist, I felt unwelcomed by the network at ‘Disorientation.'"
This won't stop the alt-right blaming (((them))) for everything

Largest study to date finds powerful evidence that gun control actually works - "As the US continues to stall on gun control talks, the largest study ever conducted on the topic has found a clear link between firearm regulation and fewer gun-related deaths around the world. Until now, studies on gun laws have been limited to just one city or country, and have failed to reach consistent conclusions. But the new research took a broader view - the team reviewed 130 high-quality studies conducted in 10 countries over the past 60 years. And while they stopped short of saying they've conclusively proved that gun restrictions equal fewer deaths, the research provides pretty powerful evidence to suggest that it's the case."

Bruce Pardy: Law society’s new policy compels speech, crossing line that must not be crossed - "All lawyers, it said, must prepare and submit a personal “Statement of Principles” attesting that we value and promote equality, diversity and inclusion. According to the advisory, “The intention of the statement of principles is to demonstrate a personal valuing of equality, diversity, and inclusion with respect to the employment of others, or in professional dealings with other licensees or any other person.” My first instinct was to check my passport. Was I still in Canada, or had someone whisked me away to North Korea, where people must say what officials want to hear? Forced speech is the most egregious violation of freedom of expression, protected by section 2(b) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms... It is not enough that we obey. Now we must also agree and actively promote. The late Alan Borovoy, former general counsel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, said that the greatest threat to liberty is not from without but from within. “The source of the most insidious peril,” he said a decade ago in a speech at Queen’s University, “is not evil wrongdoers seeking to do harm, but parochial bureaucrats seeking to do good.”"

Benetton's most controversial adverts

10 year old commedian Saffron Herndon - Album on Imgur - "Online dating is tough. Every time I meet someone new, they end up in jail"

Syonan Gallery - "The dropping of “Syonan” has soothed ruffled feathers. Along the way, it has reinforced the Singapore Story presentation of the Japanese Occupation in Singapore history, and confirmed the entrenchment of echoed memories in a generation of Singaporeans who did not personally experience war. It remains to be seen if the sentiments driving the outrage can buttress a Singapore society that is sufficiently mature and self-confident to confront the less pleasant aspects of its past."

This Frog Can't Hear Its Own Calls - "it appears the pumpkin toadlets are not able to hear the sounds they make. Goutte and her colleagues playing recordings of the calls to the frogs to look for reactions. The researchers also traced electrical impulses from the frogs' ears to their brains, and even dissected the frog inner ear. And it turns out, the frogs just don't have the equipment to hear their own voices"

Call to strip gender talk from sex-ed classes - "Gender could be stripped from classroom talks about sex and anatomy, with body parts described according to their function rather than being considered “male” or “female”, in a proposal by two academics to make school sex education more inclusive of transgender youth. The terms “penis” and “vagina” could be replaced with gender-neutral terms, while reproduction and safe sex could be taught without referring to “sperm and eggs”. In a paper published in the Journal of Sex Education, Damien Riggs and Clare Bartholomaeus of Flinders University in South Australia have called for sex education programs in schools to extend beyond the “norm of … a male with a penis and female with a vagina”. The report, which points to sex education policy in New Zealand where “gender diversity and identities are explored”, has been seized upon by same-sex marriage opponents who have argued that changing marriage laws would lead to a resurgence of Safe Schools-style programs in schools. Coalition for Marriage spokesman Lyle Shelton described the report as a “smoking gun”. “We have them advocating for the degendering of sex education of all students and confirming the concerns raised by parents about how radical LGBTI sex and gender education would infiltrate their children’s education,” he said... Another subject suggests the term “erectile tissue” could describe both the penis and clitoris... "the language of sperm and eggs can produce dysphoria for some young transgender people. It is entirely possible ... to speak about combining the two gametes as resulting in a pregnancy, without referring to egg and sperm per se.”"

Crash Override Network and Robert Marmolejo: How an Online Abuse Helpline May Have Enabled Sexual… - "Alarmingly, some of the victims have indicated hesitation to speak out about the harassment they received from Marmolejo due to his reputation as being a “popular male feminist”. If these accusations prove to be true, they will regrettably not be the first instance of a man adopting the rhetoric of progressive politics and women’s representation in order to further their own sexual agenda. Jian Ghomeshi, Hugo Schwyzer, Charles Clymer, Devin Faraci, and Matt Hickey have been similarly indicted."

Patton Oswalt on Twitter: "The "male feminist ally turns out to be a creeper/harasser" is the "family values politician turns out to be gay" for millenials."

Another Day, Another Male Feminist Outed as a Creep - "I'd love to say this is the first time a male feminist was accused for sexual misconduct in some way, but it's not. In fact, Kilstein's behavior is downright pedestrian compared to what some male feminists have been accused of in the past. Yes, I know, accusations don't mean he did it according to objective reality -- but according to the playbook Kilstein advocated for so long, he's already guilty. So I offer him no sympathy."
Joss Whedon, Robert Marmolejo, Hugo Schwyzer... There're very interesting parallels with anti-gay advocates caught doing funny things with men

Distributor of campus rape documentary paid sexual-harassment hush money for decades - "For more than two decades before he distributed the heavily disputed campus rape documentary “The Hunting Ground,” Harvey Weinstein bought the silence of younger female employees and actresses who had accused him of sexually harassing them... The man who “presents himself as a liberal lion [and] a champion of women” distributed “The Hunting Ground” the same year that an employee, Lauren O’Connor, shared her and others’ allegations with Weinstein Company executives in a “searing memo asserting sexual harassment and other misconduct by their boss.” He regularly invited young women trying to break into the business to private meetings in his hotel rooms, asked for or initiated massages with them and asked them to watch him shower, according to their accounts."

Black Lives Matter Students Shut Down the ACLU's Campus Free Speech Event Because 'Liberalism Is White Supremacy'

Dentists Have Better Ways To Prevent Cavities In Adults - "One way fluoride helps is by seeping into the enamel and drawing the calcium and phosphate that's naturally present in the saliva. The minerals boost the teeth's natural healing process and make them more resistant to future decay. But there are other theories about how fluoride works. It strengthens the enamel before the tooth erupts, which is why it's so important for children. And it attacks the acid-producing bacteria in the mouth. One study shows fluoride makes it more difficult for these bacteria to stick to the teeth."

Vegetarian diets and depressive symptoms among men. - "Vegetarian men have more depressive symptoms after adjustment for socio-demographic factors. Nutritional deficiencies (e.g. in cobalamin or iron) are a possible explanation for these findings, however reverse causation cannot be ruled out."

Meat Consumption During Pregnancy and Substance Misuse Among Adolescent Offspring - "Lower maternal meat consumption was associated with greater problematic substance use among 15 year old offspring in dose response patterns"

Michelle Obama On Our Political Problems: 'All Men, All White' - "Governmental dysfunction and public distrust in politics is a function of too many white men in government and politics, said Michelle Obama on Tuesday. Obama received applause for her racial and sexual activism as the featured speaker of the Pennsylvania Conference for Women. The former first lady began by speaking of “diversity” on the bases of race, ethnicity, and sex, framing the implementation of diverse identities as necessarily delivering a diversity of views among those affected. She essentially called for voluntary implementation of racial, ethnic, and sexual diversity quotas in all sectors of society"
Great job for Trump 2020

Mumbai stampede triggered by rush to take cover from rain - "A morning rush-hour stampede killed at least 22 people and wounded 36 yesterday during a sudden monsoon downpour at a busy railway station in India's commercial hub of Mumbai"

Was Stalin As Bad As Hitler? In Many Ways, Yes. - "Conservatives have long complained of a double standard for Nazi and Communist crimes... It is a question of particular personal relevance to me, as a Jew born in Soviet Russia, where I lived until coming the United States as a teenager in 1980. There were victims of both Communist and Nazis barbarism in my own family. My paternal grandparents were survivors of Stalin’s gulag, imprisoned for trying to escape to Israel and thankfully released early because of Stalin’s death. My father’s uncle was killed in one of Hitler’s death camps. In the closet-dissident, mostly Jewish milieu where I grew up, the belief that Stalin was as bad as Hitler and that Communism was Nazism’s equally odious twin was entirely commonplace. More than that: there was a not-uncommon view that Communism in its Stalinist incarnation was worse... Later, in the United States, I had the jarring experience of seeing American liberals use “anti-Soviet” and “anti-Communist” as pejoratives, and frustrating conversations with people who thought Ronald Reagan’s description of the Soviet Union as an evil empire was crude warmongering... For many, it’s the ends that make a key difference. As British historian Orlando Figes wrote in his 1997 book, “A People’s Tragedy: The Russian Revolution 1891-1924,” Communism is viewed as an expression of “humanity’s historic striving for social justice and comradeship,” a noble dream turned to horrific nightmare. Nazism, on the other hand, stood for racial supremacy and brutal oppression of “lower” races. Thus, Figes argues, the Communist experiment inspires some sympathy or at least respectful understanding, while the Nazi project “can only fill us with revulsion.” But how meaningful is this distinction? Figes himself shows that from the first days of the Revolution, terror was an essential part of Bolshevik creed... Nazi racial supremacism was often masked with proclamations of freedom, brotherhood and justice for (German) workers... Stalinism had its own distinct evils, including random terror that struck down even those most loyal to the regime. An ordinary German who either supported the Nazi regime or took no interest in politics generally had no reason to fear arrest... [some] ways in which Communism was the worse poison: for instance, it destroyed civil society—social bonds and institutions independent of the state—in a way Nazism did not, which made recovery from Nazism easier. Moreover, “Nazism could not be duplicated” (other fascist states did not even come close); on the other hand, “Bolshevism was exportable, and produced near-identical results elsewhere”... The goals of communism, and left-wing radicalism in general, may not be as blatantly repugnant as the goals of Nazism, fascism, and right-wing radicalism. But that makes left-wing radicalism more seductive to men and women of good will — and in that sense, perhaps, most dangerous."

Chaos during Social Justice and Feminism Debate at Milwaukee Atheism Conference - "“I think anything that happens in real life is way worse than a tweet,” Sargon said. During a discussion on affirmative action, of which Smith is a proponent, Sargon accused him of advocating for Marxist social engineering. “Freedom allows white men to control everything,” Smith said in response. Audible gasps in the audience were heard. Smith explained that it is the state’s rightful role in taking away some freedoms in order to curtail discriminatory sentiments in the public. If two applicants are the same but one is non-white, the position should go to the non-white person, Smith elaborated... Reflecting on the conference debate, Sargon expressed particular frustration with Smith’s continual demand that he apologize for the tweet to Jess Phillips. “I’m sorry, I’m not going to do that — especially not to a feminist who does not care about the male suicide rate and laughs at the idea of men having problems”"

Rukmini Callimachi on Twitter: "1. After ISIS claimed Vegas, I was waiting for them to release Naba, their weekly newsletter, to see if anything new emerged. Naba is out:" - "'ISIS has rarely claimed attacks that were not by either their members or sympathizers... I've been covering ISIS since 2014 and since then I have kept a timeline. Everytime ISIS claimed an attack in West, I jotted it down. Month later, I've gone back over list & annotated what investigation found My list is not complete but of the more than 50 cases I have annotated, I could only find 3 false claims... Beyond the attacks they've claimed, there are many more they could have claimed but didn't. These are attacks where we know it was them... Given ISIS' insistence, I'm with @AmarAmarasingam: Have any reporters asked Paddock's brother and other family members if he converted?'
'Practicing Muslims don't drink or gamble. Paddock did. Apparently never stopped. No evidence he prayed 5 x a day, either.'
'Ali Soufan cites that fighters will tend to go on sprees of the usual forbidden things before attacks. Not a negative indication.'"

This Pro-Abortion Fanatic Presented A Thought Experiment 'DESTROYING' Pro-Lifers. Here Are 4 Reasons He Fails Dramatically. - "1. Moral Instinct Does Not Always Mean Correct Moral Decisionmaking.
2. Tomlinson’s Thought Experiment Does Not Reveal The Value Of Embryonic Life.
3. Most Pro-Lifers Freely Admit The Supreme Value of Already-Born Human Life, But That Doesn’t Make Prenatal Life Valueless.
4. The Hypothetical Isn’t Reality."

Shapiro Dismantles Pro-Abortion Author's Argument. What Happens Next Is Hilarious. - "On Tuesday, Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro thoroughly dismantled a pro-abortion thought experiment posted by comic and author Patrick S. Tomlinson that went viral on Twitter. In response, Tomlinson tried to dismiss Shapiro's reasoned, meticulous response by vaguely saying Shapiro somehow "missed the point" — ironically proving that Tomlinson actually "missed the point" of the entire debate — and then, predictably, Tomlinson blocked Shapiro...
The responses online to Tomlinson's claim that Shapiro somehow proved his point was brutal, with even pro-abortion followers slamming Tomlinson for failing to understand the discussion he had started. At first Tomlinson replied but then quickly disappeared"
I guess Patrick S. Tomlinson can claim that "In ten years, no one has EVER answered it honestly" because he blocks everyone who does

WALSH: Here's The Reason Why Pro-Aborts Rely On Worst Case Scenarios To Argue Their Point - "Patrick explains that everyone would choose the child, which proves that human embryos have less value, which proves, somehow, that abortion is OK. Patrick then goes on to declare repeatedly that NO pro-lifer has EVER or will EVER answer this question honestly. He's employed the very constructive (and totally honest!) debating tactic of accusing his opponents of lying before they even open their mouths...
there is a huge difference between leaving someone in a burning building because you cannot save them, and killing them outright. It is morally permissible to commit a good act (saving a child) which may indirectly lead to something bad (the embryos burning). In that case, my intention was to save the child, not to kill the embryos. Indeed, I did not kill the embryos. I just failed to save them from being killed. This is called the principle of double effect. So, just because it would be justified for me to leave the embryos to die does not mean it would be justified to kill them directly...
for some reason our discussion of abortion ignores the 99% and focuses exclusively around situations that never happen or rarely happen."

Embryos and Five-Year-Olds: Whom to Rescue - "The possibility that resources might be used and even, perhaps, lives risked to save the frozen embryos calls to mind the story with which we began our book Embryo: A Defense of Human Life. In 2005, in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, a police crew in New Orleans did save a canister of fourteen hundred human embryos from a hospital. Our book began with Noah, one of those embryos, who sixteen months later emerged, via Caesarean section, into the light of the world and his parents’ love. But if those officers had never made it to Noah’s hospital, or if they had abandoned those canisters of liquid nitrogen, the toll of Katrina would have been fourteen hundred human beings higher than it already was, and Noah, sadly, would have perished before having the opportunity to meet his loving family. The story of Noah shows, we believe, that the choice to rescue human embryos is not necessarily fanciful or unreasonable... imagine that Jones is faced with the choice of rescuing three comatose patients or a five-year-old girl. Many people who disagree with us about the moral status of embryos agree that comatose persons are human beings entitled to full moral respect. Yet no doubt many of these same people would opt to save the girl rather than the three individuals in comas. Does that mean that they would consider it legitimate, in a different case, to kill one or more of the comatose individuals to harvest vital organs needed to save the five-year-old girl? Not at all. Choices about whom to save are subject to particular facts of the situation without requiring a comparative valuing (or devaluing) of lives. But choices to kill are always devaluing choices... suppose you could save 1,000 comatose strangers or your own five-year-old child; and suppose further that the strangers will only come out of their coma if they are provided food and shelter for nine months. But you are quite confident that no one will, in fact, provide that food and shelter. Then, once again, it seems entirely reasonable for you to save your conscious five-year-old, without this indicating in any way that the comatose strangers are less than fully human, or deserving of less than full respect. Rather, the choice to save the child will at the same time be a sad commentary on a society that is unwilling to provide the necessary resources to nurse the temporarily incapacitated back to full health."
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