Saturday, January 13, 2018

#1948: Keith Mason

Keith Mason is, together with Cal Zastrow, the founder of Personhood USA, an anti-abortion organization that seeks to (legally) define the term “Person” as starting from the moment of conception. The organization’s first target upon forming in 2008 was the Colorado Constitution (repeatedly unsuccessful), but they have expanded their target rapidly since then, with variable results. Mason is also affiliated with Operation Rescue.

Well, one thing is the goal. Another is the insane and tortured reasoning going into the campaigns to achieve those goals. “I think it’s important to note with the term fertilized egg, that’s the same thing as using the N word for an African American,” says Mason. It is not. According to Mason, however, it is so, “[b]ecause it’s a dehumanizing term and it’s not based in science.” Mason is not a scientist, which shows. Of Roe v. Wade, Mason maintains that “it’s a bad law,” because “[i]t was not based in reason. They ignored the concept of the pre-born child being a person.” Since Mason’s critique of the phrase “fertilized egg” is that it is not “based in science”, it seems to follow that he thinks “pre-born person” is. Science and reason are not Mason’s strongest suits.

Of course, like so many anti-abortion activists, Mason’s prime target seems to be contraception, and in particular women controlling their own sexuality. Because religion. No surprise there.

Not surprisingly, Mason and Personhood USA are also supportive of a wide range of other religious rights issues, including anti-gay legislations. And like so many rightwing groups, they have also taken their agenda abroad, where various religion-based efforts to write discrimination and oppression into law may find more sympathetic audiences than in the US. Mason’s group is for instance active in fighting reproductive rights advances at the United Nations and has been pouring money into unspecified projects in Europe. Mason is also a regular at the fundamentalist anti-LGBT activist World Congress of Families.

Diagnosis: One can have a reasonable debate about the moral status of abortion, but not with Keith Mason, who is a deranged loon fueled by bigotry and fiery religious fanaticism. He and his group are certainly influential, however.


  1. Like all the forced birthers, this clown ignores the fact that 1/2 of all fertilized eggs fail to implant and that a further 10% of those that do implant are spontaneously aborted. Since god is in charge, that makes him/her/it the worlds champion abortionist.

    1. Those numbers are even higher, according to several sources.

      "The basic fact is that life simply is not as miraculous as we choose to deem it. According to University of Utah Professor of Pediatrics, Human Genetics, and Obstetrics and Gynecology John M. Opitz in his 2003 testimony to the President’s Council on Bioethics, 60 to 80 percent of embryos (i.e. unique fusions of genes from mother and father that encode distinct human beings) simply never develop further. They are either flushed out of the mother’s system without implanting into the uterine wall or are voided because of chromosomal abnormalities. Of this immense number of failed embryos, roughly half do not have gross genetic errors, and in fact carry the information for the creation of a viable human being. But they simply do not continue to exist, and their characteristic combination of genes, which will never again be formed in quite the same way, is lost."--"Abortion Under The Microscope"; The Harvard Crimson

      I've read that the CDC estimates that 25% of pregnancies spontaneously abort. IVF clinics estimate 35% based on their experience. March of Dimes estimates that upwards of 50% of pregnancies spontaneously abort.