Home / Views & Opinion / An Acorn Is Not an Oak Tree Nor is a Zygote a Human
An Acorn Is Not an Oak Tree Nor is a Zygote a Human

An Acorn Is Not an Oak Tree Nor is a Zygote a Human

Since Mississippi voters failed to pass Initiative 26, the Religious Reich Republicans believe they know better than the Vulgar and plan to push HR212, known as the “Sanctity of Life Human Life”, nationwide.  This would not only give zygotes personhood and make abortion illegal, but also illegalize some forms of birth control.  In effect, this bill would make women nothing more than baby factories.

Personally, I am tired of this anti-woman, anti-science, draconian patriarch.

If Genesis 1:27 “So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” is true, then I dare anyone to refute these scientific findings below.  Of course, I will warn you now, if you do not desire an education, then I suggest turning back now, because it is true, reason and knowledge can destroy faith in the supernatural.

An acorn does not equal an oak tree.






Similarly, a zygote does not equal a human and I will tell you why.





Looking at the ultrasound below, one might think it is a human fetus.

 It is not. It is supposedly a puppy fetus.

Below is a video of fetal development and while the video concerns human development, other animals develop much the same way.

A lot could happen between zygote and blastocyst stages, including a miscarriage. The first trimester is generally when most deformities develop.

Secondly, can you tell which of these pictures below is human?











To the untrained eye, they all may look potentially human, because we all start out like this and DNA, if turned on at the right time, if at all, decides if development becomes chicken, elephant, dog, dolphin, human, kitten, or mouse.

For the record, the fifth picture is supposedly human and the rest are in order as previously stated, but even humans start out with tails, which eventually disappear and turn into tail bones, which are remnants of our primitive pasts as primates and animals in general.  The same is true of the limb buds, which develop much the same way, but DNA coding decides if the zygote develops human limbs or canine limbs.  We are no different from other animals in terms of development, which, if you think about it, is gross.

Therefore, I dare to take this argument further than my fellow non-theist and say according to this bill even dolphin, elephant, dog, cat, and chicken zygotes have personhood, because we do not know what they are, except for the mother’s physical features saying that this zygote might be a chicken or a dog.

This bill is great for animal rights and welfare activists, because even our pets will receive their rights as people if the Religious Reich succeeds in having their way.  How could their zygotes not receive personhood when they look exactly like human zygotes?

Humans resemble other animals until well into the second trimester, at least, unless certain DNA does not kick in and then you end up with…


This person supposedly lives in China and if he really does exist, then I hope, for his sake, his life possesses quality and not quantity.  If such a condition actually exists, it is extremely rare, but stranger things have happened in nature, so who knows if it does exist.

Likewise, given that dolphins develop vestigial limbs, which eventually fuse together into a “tail” and sometimes they do not. Sometimes they develop bulbs on their tails, which are remnants of their own evolutionary past.

Theoretically, humans could develop “mermaid” like lower extremities, as seen on the Elephant man link, because we are related to dolphins through evolution, but such a condition would also be extremely rare, if it does exist.  Development is a matter of which chromosomes switch on during development and in what sequence.

If the right sequence does not kick in, one, if successfully born, can live a few minutes to a few years with sever deformities.  Nice “god” the Religious Reich created, especially if such a deity exists and wants people to suffer.  In my opinion, that type of deity would not be one I would want to worship.

More often though, we see deformities, such as the little Indian girl with eight limbs, who recently underwent surgery to remove the twin her body absorbed during gestation.  Hindus in India considered her the incarnation of the Hindu goddess, by the Indians of India.

With DNA, we find our closest relatives, the Bonobo.  They are 98% genetically similar to humans, but the 2% difference in the sequence is what makes them Bonobos and us humans.  However, during gestational development, the naked, untrained eye, could not tell them apart.  Even the mouse, as Robert Jones shows, is not much different in genomes and as I showed above, gestationally it looks no different until the proper DNA kicks in during fetal development.

Supposedly, this is a chimpanzee fetus, but as another source stated, it is difficult to tell the difference between a human and chimpanzee fetus.  However, the gestation time for chimps and humans is about the same.  Thus, if the gestation period is about the same and if this is a chimp fetus, then it is probably in the early stages of the final trimester.

So not only will there more deaths occur from childbirth, but also more tragedies of genetics.  The potential of more mothers and babies dying from childbirth increases, as well as deformities’, if the Religious Reich Republicans pass such a bill.

However, the third issue involved in such a bill is that it gives personhood to all zygotes, not just human zygotes, because there is very little difference between the various zygotes of any species.  They all look alike at the zygote stage of development.  This news is good for other species on this planet, because it could potentially save endangered species, but not good news for human females.  Animal Rights and Welfare activists could have a field day if such a bill passed, but many human females and their offspring could potentially die, if not suffer from debilitating health issues.

About Mriana

Mriana is a humanist and the author of "A Source of Misery", who grew up in the Church of God, Anderson Indiana. After she became an adult, she joined the Episcopal Church, but later left the Church and became a humanist. She has two grown sons and raises cats. Mriana raised her sons in the Episcopal Church, but in their teen years, they left the Church and she soon followed. One of her sons became a "Tao Buddhist" and the other a None, creating his own world view. She enjoys writing, reading, science, philosophy, psychology, and other subjects. Mriana is also an animal lover, who cares for their welfare as living beings, who are part of the earth. She is a huge Star Trek fan in a little body.
  • Great article, Mriana!

    It struck my while reading this is that they are always complaining of state courts and legislatures "imposing" gay marriage on everyone, but this national personhood effort would be "imposing" an even more controversial measure on people — one with deadly consequences. Gay marriage may offend some people, but personhood creates real life consequences.


    • It most certainly does. The scope of the consequences is enumerable and immense. We're only pointing to the tip of the iceberg when talk about great number of deaths of women and babies, deformatives, the evolutionary relationship between species… The more people think, like you did, the more consequences they will notice if this bill passes. Overpopulation is another.

  • Politicians should not create rules of conduct for citizens using religious implications. We live in times of advanced science, the discovery of cures for diseases. I loved the name"Religious Reich Republicans' extremely appropriate to the subject. Great article

    No more Republican rules

    • Thank you. Hopefully the Religious Reich Republicans will not reign or still be in office after the next election, which can't come soon enough.

  • John

    Sorry, I'm just not buying it. First of all, is an acorn equal to an oak tree? Of course not, but we don't value oak tress the same way we value humans. We value oak trees because they can benefit us, i.e. providing shade and looking pretty. An acorn does neither of these, therefore we don't value it. Humans, on the other hand, are valued because we, as humans, are, by conscience, obligated to value another human life. So in this sense, a zygote is indeed of equal value to an adult. As proof of this, we kill saplings and old sick trees all the time because they don't benefit us. Do we kill babies and old people? No. Second of all, I don't really understand why you say that just because a human fetus looks like an animal that it is okay to kill it. If someone has a resemblance to a gorilla, does that mean it is acceptable to kill them? I don't mean to be condescending, but what is this talk that it is not possible to tell the difference between a human and animal embryo? It's a pretty safe bet that if it's inside a human, that it's a human embryo.

    • Are you saying that a zygote is a sentient being? Does it have the same level of consciousness as an old person?

      Just curious.

      • John

        When did I say that? Of course a zygote is not sentient, but if that is justification for killing it then that means it should also be legal to kill someone who is sleeping.

        • John, I was asking a question, not saying you said that zygotes are sentient. However, you did beg the question by saying that a zygote has equal value to that of an adult.


          "Humans, on the other hand, are valued because we, as humans, are, by conscience, obligated to value another human life. So in this sense, a zygote is indeed of equal value to an adult."

          You appear to be defensive about a reasonable question. I personally have a very difficult time equating a zygote to be equal to an adult human for the very reason that it is not sentient. If zygotes were sentient, they would be capable of awareness or physical sensations. A sleeping person is obviously capable of awareness or physical sensations.

          I'm not trying to put words in your mouth; I simply do not understand why the anti-abortion folks seem to think that zygotes have the same level of consciousness and value as beings outside of the womb. I never see this in the arguments that compare abortion to the Holocaust and quite frankly, have personally understood the language about "breath" throughout the bible when used in the context of human life as a metaphor for consciousness.


          • John

            Ok, but just one question. Do you believe it would be okay to kill someone who were in a coma that would last just nine months? Bearing in mind that someone in a coma is not sentient.

            • The coma question is a good one. I don't know if you've ever seen someone in a coma, but it is not necessarily like they're peacefully sleeping (at least in the case of my good friend who was in a coma, and died about 13 months later). He responded somewhat to touch, to voices, so there was some sentience, if you define sentience as capable of awareness and physical sensation. It was emotionally shocking at first to see him in this state; his eyes were rolling, tongue was hanging out, one arm was thrashing about, vomit drooled out of his mouth. After that experience, I decided that I'd prefer to die, if I were in a similar situation.

              I think people need to create healthcare powers of attorney/medical powers of attorney and address this issue in their estate planning to avoid Terry Shaivo situations. My personal decision is pull the plug — that's for me, it might not be for everyone.

              In the case where a person has not specified what to do, then by all means, keep him/her alive if in a coma. That person has connections in society, loved ones, experience, and so forth. The unfortunate reality, again in my own experience with another person I know and not necessarily true across the board, is that when the insurance runs out and there are not enough cash assets, the "plug gets pulled" because of the expense.

              I feel very strongly about health care directives. It's better to make this decision on your own instead of dumping it on family and loved ones.


            • A person in a coma is not a fetus and cannot be compared to a fetus. The person in a coma is a human being, without a doubt, but a fetus cannot live on it's own and machines are not as great as keeping a person in a coma alive. Most comatose patients are in an extremely deep sleep. Even so, you cannot compare a comatose patient with a fetus. They are not the same and comparing a fetus to an adult is like the theory of Tabula Rosa, blank slate, but yet the child was considered a little adult, which is not true either. You are still trying to call an acorn an oak tree, when it is not.

            • @ Mriana – I completely agree that a person who is in a coma is not the same as a fetus.

          • I personally have a very difficult time equating a zygote to be equal to an adult human for the very reason that it is not sentient.

            Yeah, such a statement sounds like Tabula Rosa to me.

        • Of course a zygote is not sentient, but if that is justification for killing it then that means it should also be legal to kill someone who is sleeping.

          Now that is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard and a bunch of BS too.

    • Second of all, I don't really understand why you say that just because a human fetus looks like an animal that it is okay to kill it. If someone has a resemblance to a gorilla, does that mean it is acceptable to kill them?

      John, I'm a vegetarian. What do you think think I'm saying? It's more like the other way around. If you give such rights to a human fetus, then you better give the same rights to that gorilla and chimpanzee fetus, as well as a cat, dog, whale, dolphin, elephant, chicken, and polar bear fetus, and stop treating them like that damn sapling.

    • BTW, just to add more emphasis to my vegetarianism and giving "personhood" to other animal fetuses, I'm also an Evolutionist, who strongly believes we are all related via a common ancestor. Thus, the other apes are our cousins and IMO, it's only fair that we give their fetuses just as much consideration as we do our own. Thus, "personhood" for human animal fetuses, so too "personhood" for other animal fetuses, who have just as much "sentience" as as a human animal fetus. The fetuses are no different.

      • John

        Ok, I still disagree but I understand your point. I would, however, just like to thank your mother for choosing life, because if not, we couldn't have this fun debate.

        • Well, I'm glad she had me too, but the thing is, sometimes, when things aren't going well for the mother and/or the fetus (I point to the article below), it is good to have options, including the option of abortion. You're right, it is a fun debate and I'm glad you understand my point. Many Evangelical Fundamentalists, not saying you are one, don't. Many, who reject or do not understand Evolution, refuse to or won't see the similarities in the fetuses, taking a "Humans are not animals and they are better than animals" attitude. If I had not had options and was forced to carry my younger son to full term, we would have been dead, due to HELLP Syndrome. As was, the dr induced labour a month early and if he could not save us both, their father and I agreed, my life should be saved. Luckily, option one saved us both and if I had it to do all over again, I would still make the same choices. The only way to remedy HELLP Syndrome and potentially save both the mother and baby or at least the mother, is to induce labour early or have a C-Section. Otherwise, both mother and child die. If there are other children, like in my case with an older son, then to force her to carry the baby to term, would cause the child(ren) to be both motherless and sibling-less. IMO, it is better to be without a sibling than without a mother. So, that too can be argued both ways and personally, I would prefer the woman to live than someone who never knew what life was and really doesn't have a feeling for life yet. The unborn are no worse off than if they never were conceived, but a child already living and knows what life is, esp one with a mother, suffers a whole lot more psychologically.

          Thus, I can argue pro-life (not Pro-life), by supporting women's health care, which includes abortion, without violating my views and beliefs concerning what life is and what it means to be a human living in this world. To do otherwise would violate what I consider pro-life. Being Pro-choice, does not mean one isn't for life. However, I do think Pro-life (with a capital "P") is actually pro-death.

  • I agree, Deborah, and while I don't have it in writing yet (working on it), my older son has orders to pull the plug if there is no hope of me returning to a state in which I can communicate my wants, needs, desires, etc, even if it's with gestures and be able to understand others too. If I don't have my brain able to communicate with others in some fashion, then I prefer euthanasia. In that respect, we treat our pets, other animals in general, better than humans. So yeah, if that fetus is only going to have quantity of life and not quality, then it is worth considering terminating the pregnancy, just as a friend of mine did. A few months, she conceived again and that time the fetus was healthy and her child is living a quality and healthy life, with a healthy younger sister, who also has quality of life too. The whole family does for that matter.

  • Here is her story and she does not regret it: http://articles.exchristian.net/2009/06/my-abortion-baby.html

    She wrote another one recently, as well as other on the topic of abortion: http://new.exchristian.net/2012/02/i-mother-daughter-thinker-healer-writer.html

  • The way I think of it is that a fetus is life but not a person, just a potential person because personhood requires the ability to think and feel. A fetus is a blueprint. An egg or a sperm also is "life" but only a partial blueprint. Billions and billions of blueprints exist, either partial or complete that never become persons. Most fertilized eggs don't implant. Why isn't that a tragedy?

    Like Mriana, it is not so much my life that I value as my personhood, my conscious self. When my personhood is gone, my self is gone, then why should my "life" be any more valuable than other life that is incapable of sentience.

    • Good point, Valerie and thanks for posting.

  • I stumbled onto another article which explains how religious beliefs could have killed one woman's unborn baby. It deals with Rh – blood type, which I have. This can kill an unborn child if not treated early. I was lucky in that I knew mine already, given my mother's dr was worried about me in 1966, but we both had Rh – which worked very well. With my son, since I already knew, I received RhoGam before and after their births, which prevented my body from rejecting them, because they were Rh +. This woman was almost not so lucky and with the Religious Reich's beliefs enforced on women, would have died if she did not receive the necessary treatment, thus they would have killed a baby that they say is so important to them: http://www.alternet.org/story/154240/santorum%27s_policies_would_have_killed_my_daughter

    Again, Pro-life is not pro-life.

  • Hmm!I agree with sister Mriana.I stumbled onto another article which explains how religious beliefs could have killed one woman's unborn baby.Hmm nice good.Thanks for shearing this..

  • I also read out the article, That's a great post. Thank you for sharing

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