Kathleen Gilbert

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What the FOX? Personhood headline on Fox News chants ‘clump of cells’ mantra

Kathleen Gilbert

You wouldn’t know FOX was supposed to be a conservative news service from their awful headline on Wednesday: “Push to Declare a Human Egg a ‘Person’ Offers New Tack on Abortion Debate.”

Apparently enough people were outraged at this appalling misnomer that FOX budged, but only slightly. The updated story now calls newly-conceived human life a “fertilized egg.”

As a relatively mature zygote myself, I object to calling my neighbors, much tinier and more dependent at the moment than FOX News headline writers, such a dehumanizing slur.

But the reason for it is no big secret. Respecting life regardless of age is just too threatening to the one convenience even right-wing Americans now tenaciously cling to: birth control. The Fox article takes it as a given that new human life can be killed by common contraceptives, such as the morning-after pill and IUDs, the same argument advanced by progressives against personhood attempts.

150 years ago, promoting contraception was met with horror and punished as public indecency. Today, we have built a world that revolves around the Pill, and it’s things like Fox’s knee-jerk reaction against personhood that remind us we have been acclimated to a great evil. Forced to see that common anti-children technologies can actually kill the newest and most fragile children, all of a sudden the “it’s just a clump of cells” argument begins to sound really good.

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