Monthly Archives: January 2013
Sorry I’ve been on a bit of a blogging dry spell as of recently. Things haven’t exactly been going all that well in my neck of the woods and I’ve been dealing with the loss of my youngest sister (please don’t bombard the comments section with condolences, I’ve had plenty of that from my close friends!), so I hope you please excuse my lack of recent blogging.
Anyway, thinking of loss and death and whatever due to recent events, the topic of will and inheritance comes up. As it is, I don’t have any immediate family or anybody who I deem worthy of inhering my assets upon my death, so what am I to do? You’d think it’d be asinine for me to actually write a will, but I have in fact done just that. I’ve willed that upon my passing, whatever assets I have I want to go to my the care and well being of any animals I might be in ownership of upon my death.
Me dying doesn’t mitigate or cancel their need to be taken care of, and caring for animals requires some expense, so whoever takes ownership of my animals after I pass will be given a monetary equivalent of my assets to put toward their care and for no other reason. They won’t be allowed to just spend whatever they get on themselves. It will be closely monitored and controlled so that the money doesn’t get abused.
So that’s what I’ve willed. How about my fellow CFers? Do you have a will? If so, who inherits?
As a piper and a huge fan of Burns Suppers (I went to my first one less than a year after I joined my old pipe band and I’ve been a fan ever since) and Robert Burns poetry I decided I would try to organize a Burns’ Supper here. I didn’t know what kind of support I would get and this is the first one we’ve done here, but surprisingly the support has been there. The local pipe band (yes, we have one here as surprising at that might seem) seemed very open to the idea and from there we formed a board of directors consisting of the band officers and myself and have gone from there.
Anyway, for my UK readers and maybe some of my other readers, you know what a Burns Supper is like. Lots and lots of drinking, loud music, you name it. Put it plainly, definitely not kid-friendly! Talk about a great venue for childfree people who are looking for something fun to do. Well, maybe.
One thing we had discussed in our board meetings was an age limitation. Historically, every Burns Supper I’ve gone to has not had an age limitation specified, but people have had the common sense not to bring young children to them. I don’t recall seeing anyone under the age of about 14 at any Burns Supper I’ve ever been part of, but you never know. We ultimately decided to pass on putting an official age restriction thinking there’d be no risk in doing so, now I’m kinda wishing we hadn’t have and I’m hoping that it doesn’t come back to bite us in the ass.
I just hope that the people who attend will have enough common sense to leave their kids at home and realize this is not a kid-friendly event. Today’s parents seem to think that there’s no such thing as an “adult only” venue and don’t hesitate to take their kids into bars, R-rated movies, among other places children have no business being. See, back in the day parents actually had standards about this kind of thing. Nowadays they don’t.
I don’t know, I really think we should have said something like “12 and up only” or something on the tickets, but we didn’t and I think we were stupid to do so because now we can’t necessarily object to parents bringing little kids as we didn’t specify. We did NOT say kids get in free or that kids get in for a reduced price, so even if they do come they’ll have to pay full price for a kid. I’m hoping this should be enough to turn parents away from bringing little kids, because you know how they all think that kids should get in free or for a reduced fare (which both you and I know is a load of crap because it means we have to make up the slack by having the price jacked up on us).
Eh, whatever. Hopefully this goes off well. I’ve been stressed about this enough without having other crap to worry about. Meh.
This isn’t exactly a childfree topic, but I think it’s worthy of addressing here because it reiterates why antinatalism is the way, the truth, and the light.
A pair of Belgian twins born deaf recently started going blind. As they started to go blind, they requested euthanasia (euthanasia is legal in Belgium). After a legal battle, the courts ruled that they were suffering unbearably and granted their right to die, and they died via lethal injection, together. Here’s a link to the story: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2262630/Brother-deaf-Belgian-twins-killed-euthanasia-describes-final-words-reveals-live-learning-going-blind.html
First of all, on top of being an antinatalist, I’m a firm supporter of one’s right to die. I believe the right for (born) people to live also includes their right to die without any interference from the state. I support these brothers’ decision and would have definitely made the same decision myself if I were in their shoes. That said, I think euthanasia/assisted suicide should be legal whenever and for whatever reason a patient deems fit, and that includes just being tired of life. Voluntary euthanasia should be a protected right, for any reason. Period, end of story. There’s just no way to effectively argue against that.
That said, I said this story reinforces why I’m an antinatalist and I’ll tell you right now why. Had these brothers never been born, they’d have never had to suffer these devastating effects. They’d have been spared a lifetime of pain and suffering had they never been brought into existence. Their lives were not only not worth starting (nobody’s life is worth starting, though), they apparently also were not worth continuing. When there’s a risk of life that’s not worth continuing, why bring someone into existence whose life might possibly not be worth continuing? Once again, we see why procreation is immoral.
I’m just glad there are some forward-thinking countries in this world, and I hope the right to die will soon be advanced everywhere. Good job, Belgium.
You know, I’ve been thinking awhile about the discrimination childfree people face in the workplace: everything from having to take up the slack for the new mothers who have to go on maternity leave for (and getting no additional pay for it, I might add) to people who are lured into a job thinking it’s a permanent position only to be let go when the new mother goes back to work. I’ve also heard of cases where childfree people are denied jobs altogether because employers see being married with children as a sign of “integrity” or “good moral character” or whatever. Whatever the case, most of the time childfree people get shafted in the workplace, and it’s disgusting.
And that got me to thinking some, and I’ve come to the conclusion I would much rather hire only childfree people. Childfree people are more dependable. They won’t be taking maternity/paternity leave for any reason, they take fewer sick days, and they have no reason other than “I don’t want to” to complain about having to put in some additional hours.
I wonder how parents would react to a job ad that says “parents need not apply.” Quite frankly, there would be no law against it. Parenthood is not a “protected class” in any country that I know of. As long as you can prove that such a hiring policy affects men and women equally, it is acceptable in the eyes of the law to have such a stipulation. In my case, if I were an employer looking to hire people, it would affect men and women in the same way, so I could get away with it and I would do so and not think twice about it.
The goal of a business owner is to turn a profit. Hiring employees who will increase profit is thus the proper strategy, and childfree employees are the ones who are more profitable to a company. Thus I think childfree people should get preferential treatment. Hey, many businesses already give preferential treatment to parents, it’s time we evened the score a little bit. 😉
Concerning abortion, for ages the anti-choice community has (incorrectly, I might add) labeled pro-choicers as “pro-death,” I guess as a direct antonym to the term “pro-life” which they erroneously refer to themselves as. I personally don’t know any pro-choice individual who could be described as such, though as my understanding of the world and life itself has evolved, I suppose it is an accurate description of how my views on abortion have shifted over the years.
The pro-death view of abortion is merely a natural extension of the antinatalist view. Since coming into existence is the worst possible thing that could happen to an individual, it naturally follows that a pro-death view of abortion is the most logically consistent. Of course, the best possible thing is to prevent pregnancy at all costs so so that abortion doesn’t have to take place, but that’s the ideal world and we don’t live in the ideal world.
Now, some will argue that one has already come into existence at the moment of conception. Biologically speaking, I think, they are correct. I have never denied that biologically speaking a new life begins at conception. That said, I (and Benatar, I should add) reject the moral significance of a zygote and even an early-term fetus for the same reason I reject the moral significance of a plant’s life, namely that it is non-sentient. Sentience is a prerequisite to regard a life form as morally significant.
So now that we’ve established the moral insignificance of an embryo, we can hence build the case for a pro-death position on abortion. Since it is better never to have been brought into existence, and given that no life is worth starting, it naturally follows that aborting all pregnancies is the mode of least harm. The mother suffers some harm during the procedure in the case of pain and recovery, but these are much less than the harm she will suffer during labor and the nearly two decades following raising that child. Further, since coming into existence is the greatest harm of all, aborting an early-term pregnancy prevents the fetus from coming into existence in a morally significant way, thus sparing them the suffering that would await them in an earthly life.
Though Benatar doesn’t address late-term abortion in his excellent book, I will do so here briefly. Late in gestation a fetus attains sentience and thus a morally significant existence. At this point, I think for the most part abortion is indefensible even though I think abortion should be legal for the duration of pregnancy. I have multiple reasons for this line of thinking. In many cases, the family dynamic changes (loss of job, father walks out, etc.) that would put undue hardship on the raising of the child. There are also some deformities that don’t become apparent until the later stages of prenatal development, most of which would make life unbearably difficult. There is also the case where the mother’s life is in jeopardy, which I don’t think needs to be addressed. All that said, I still regard late-term abortion as a much lesser harm than a worldly existence, so that even though late-term abortion is reprehensible in my mind (in most cases, with the above notable exceptions) it is still a lesser evil than being born.
Thus is the case for the pro-death view of abortion, based on the antinatalist position of being brought into existence. Since being brought into existence in the morally significant way is the greatest harm of all, it can easily be concluded that the best possible thing would be to terminate all pregnancies in the early stages, but also that late-term abortion is a lesser harm than being born.