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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • I won't reveal my own opinion on the pro-life vs. pro-choice debate, but I will pass along a report of a very recent court case here in Michigan (came by way of a good friend who is a lawyer).


    Boyfriend has fight with his girlfriend, who is 16 weeks pregnant (boyfriend impregnated the girlfriend). Boyfriend begins punching girlfriend in the stomach and girlfriend reacts by taking a knife and killing him. She's charged with manslaughter. At trial, her lawyer attempts to argue self defense -- not that she feared for her own life, but that she was protecting the fetus(es) (quadruplets). The trial judge did not allow that defense, ruling that at 16 weeks the fetuses were not viable, therefore there was no "other" life for her to be defending.
     


    The court of appeals this past week reversed the trial court and ordered a new trial allowing the self-defense argument. The appeals court noted specifically that the viability of the fetus should not be the deciding factor -- she had the right to protect her unborn child.


    Although the court tried to make the ruling a narrow one, limited only to the self defense issue, the pre-choice v anti-abortion advocates are already considering its possible ramifications. As one legal expert in the area observed: "One is left with a most peculiar legal situation.... Although she may use deadly force to protect the viable or nonviable fetus, thereby ending someone's life, she also has the constitutional right to terminate the pregnancy herself without consequence."


    The prosecutor said she will be asking the Michigan Supreme Court to review the matter. As I said, interesting case.

    --
    Jeff Boes Hyper-real techno priest of Perl