Couple With "Birthornot" Site Asking for a Vote on Their Abortion Revealed to Be Anti-Choice Trolls

 A few days ago, a website called "birthornot," in which a couple called "the Arnolds" asked readers to vote up or down on whether they should abort or keep their pregnancy to term, began making the rounds on gossip and media blogs, mostly appalled or bewildered. 

Pro-choicers, though hesitant to judge, were immediately suspicious . The idea that anyone would let others make such an important and personal decision didn't seem consistent with pro-choice values. The website,as Amanda Marcotte put it, was a perfect set-up for a "conversion" experience commonly manufactured by anti-choicers to make their point. She wrote:

"At first blush, I gave it 9-to-1 odds that it's an anti-choice stunt, just on the fact that the couple running it have the pro-choice view completely backwards. Putting what you do with your body up to a vote is the anti-choice view. Treating women's bodies like they're public property is the anti-choice view. True, most anti-choicers think a woman's rights should be voted on in order to force childbirth, and they're making this more open-ended, but the underlying sentiment--that women's bodies are public property, that their choices should be determined by strangers--is what the pro-choice movement rejects."

Still, the Arnolds  insisted they were genuinely earnest with their social experiment. Fortunately, a little snooping by bloggers and the conspiracy was unmasked.

As Jeff Fecke wrote after taking us through his web search on these folk's internet histories, he discovered a few red flags for Pete Arnold. And then he hit a gold mine, discovering that in fact, someone using the Arnold husband's preferred handle used to vandalize Wikis calling abortion "killing.": "And…we’re done here. Pete Arnold is an anti-choice troll," Feck wrote. The ostensible reason behind the prank, bloggers surmised, was to reveal pro-choicers as heartless, or to show that pro-choicers hate baby-killing too---depending on how people voted.

Call it an attempted web stunt gone wrong. And read more at Care2,  Blog of the Moderate Left, and DoubleX.

AlterNet / By Sarah Seltzer

Posted at November 19, 2010, 3:47am

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