On 14 July Professor Thomas removed his post citing the Seoul Times, after I wrote to him pointing out that the baby herbal soup meme is a hoax.
I’d like to thank Professor Thomas for acting promptly on this matter.
I really thought that the whole “baby herbal soup” hoax had been put to death. I haven’t had to come back to this racist Internet meme for sometime, but unfortunately, I have discovered a rather alarming version of the story being repeated and used by a professor of philosophy from a respected American university.
Yes, that’s right, a professor of philosophy is relying on the fake and highly racist story that Chinese people eat aborted fetuses to make an argument about the morality of abortion.
According to his CV, Professor Laurence Thomas has been a tenured professor at Syracuse University since 1989. Indeed he is listed as faculty on the University website.
Professor Laurence Thomas has linked to the discredited Seoul Times article — only one version of the so-called “news” report — in order to attack what he dismissively describes as the “liberal” view of abortion.
Here’s just a small sample from this 2009 blog post:
Professor Laurence Thomas, Syracuse University
Animal flesh is eaten all the time; and since the human fetus is claimed by liberals not to be a person, then why cannot it not be eaten as a form of animal flesh? My raising this question is not an indication of my having become a morally demented individual.
Rather, I have raised the question because precisely what has been reported in the Seoul Times (9 June 2009) is that in China the human fetus is being served as a form of nourishment. The article claims that in China baby herbal soup is held to “increase overall health and stamina and the power of sexual performance in particular”.
Now, the observation that I wish to make is the liberals on abortion are in no position to criticize the practice in China of consuming the human fetus for food. Why? Because liberals on abortion insist that the fetus does not constitute a human being, and so has no moral standing at all as a human being. By this line of reasoning, eating a human fetus can be no more morally objectionable than eating dog or snake or horse or snails.
Professor Thomas has included one of the notorious images that often accompany the retelling of the hoax. I have pointed out before that these images are the work of Chinese performance artist Zhu Yu and are not evidence that Chinese people prepare and consume “baby herbal soup”.
I have posted a full list or URLs to previous Ethical Martini posts on this topic, you can read all about it there.
I have written to Professor Thomas asking that he either take down the post, or at least edit it to acknowledge that the Seoul Times story and other so-called “evidence” of the practice of eating babies are false and malicious.
If you visit the Moral Health blog where Professor Thomas writes his argument you will instantly see why it is important that this hoax be exposed at every opportunity. Idiots and racists of low intelligence (two overlapping but separate groups of dribblejaws and willful fools) jump on these expressions of the hoax to spout all kinds of filth about Chinese people.
Dear Professor Thomas,
I am writing in relation to a post you wrote on a blog called Moral Health
Real Baby Soup in China: Extending the Liberal View on Abortion?
The post uses an article from the Seoul Times as the basis for a long treatise on abortion and the “eating” of a human fetus.
While I have no quibble with you having strong views about abortion — indeed I hold similarly strong views myself on abortion and a number of topics — I do take issue with you using as your main source material a purported news article from an online source that has little or no credibility.
Your article generated a lot of responses and continues to garner hits and views. Indeed I was drawn to your post by a ping back to my own blog.
I believe that you should take down this post, or at least make several large edits to clarify the real situation.
The “baby herbal soup” meme is an internet hoax and as a professor of philosophy, I am sure you would not want to base an argument on a false premise.
I have been chasing down this internet hoax myself for the past six or more years and there is no credible source for the outrageous and frankly racist claim that Chinese people consume aborted fetuses.
You can follow my research and discussion from the following URLs.
It would be helpful if you, as a respected academic, would join me in condemning this cruel hoax and you can start by examining the post you wrote and, as I suggest, take it down or edit it to acknowledge the hoax.
I hope you can find the time to respond to me, unlike the editors of the Seoul Times whose only response when I wrote to them was abuse.
I await Professor Thomas’ response. If you wish to join my call for Professor Thomas to take down or amend this blog post, you can contact him yourself via the following links:
College of Arts & Sciences,
Syracuse, NY 13244