If you’re the kind of person who finds heated or controversial political discussions distasteful, please – come back next time, when I’ll have a quirky toy collection and and an update on the cashmere situation to present.
I’ve been doing a lot of research this week, and having many, many online discussions to try and decide which Presidential candidate will get my vote this fall. (Yes, I’m still deliberating.) I’ve been asking others what it is about their candidate of choice that earned their support. Some people are voting along party lines, some people are voting after careful consideration of issues most important to them, and some people’s vote was swayed by mudslinging. Out of everything, I was most disturbed by a single line I kept seeing over and over.
I could never support someone who was pro-life. Period.
Since when has being pro-life been an indefensible position? Since when has being pro-life been a symptom of radical religious misogyny, not to mention someone incredibly out of touch with the ‘realities’ of modern life? Since when has concern for the life of an unborn child been irrelevant?
Look. I don’t think abortion should be completely illegal. The decision to have an abortion is a huge and very personal one, and there are situations where I would feel that a mother was justified in terminating her pregnancy. I don’t believe laws should be changed to force women to carry a baby they do not want to term. That’s wrong. I’ve had children. Being pregnant was one of the most invasive, exhausting, overwhelming, and frightening experiences of my life – of course it wasn’t only that, but in a situation where I had no desire for the pregnancy or the child, in a situation with no support, it would have been Hell. I also don’t believe that women should have an abortion because they don’t feel like having kids, or getting stretch marks, or ‘I’m in school right now,’ or ‘he broke up with me when he found out,’ or the hundred other reasons that have nothing to do with the life of the mother, the life of the child, rape, incest, or other deeply damaging situations. (These combined account for less than 10% of abortions in the United States.) That is also wrong. Not because I say so, but because the decision to end a human life for any but the deepest and most desperate of reasons is wrong. I suppose that because I don’t want to completely ban abortions, and I don’t want to strictly limit them (I don’t think that’s possible in a way that is ethical) I can’t call myself ‘pro-life.’ I’m definitely not ‘pro-choice.’ It’s just never that simple.
So I’m not out to take away your “right” to abortions. But come on, people. There has to be a better way. I’m all for mass dispersal of contraceptives, if that would reduce abortion rates. Frankly, if you don’t want children I don’t want you reproducing. (Not in a Darwinian sense. But I like babies. Why would I want to force you to have one you don’t want? Not fair to anyone.) If you (as an adult) choose to have sex, you choose to accept an implicit risk of pregnancy resulting – even with contraception. Responsibility for the consequences of your actions is not optional. If even a .01% chance of pregnancy is unacceptable to you, quit having sex.
In the end, I am really, truly saddened by the unspoken attitude I have seen reflected by dozens of women this week, that anyone ‘against’ abortion only wants to cripple and control women, shackling them in their own bodies for the sake of some unwanted non-person (aka fetus) that someone will have to grudgingly provide and care for after it makes it out. It seems like the discussion has focused so much on “her body” that no one dares to mention “her baby” – and that is devastatingly tragic.
You’re welcome to tell me you disagree with me. I don’t mind. I do reserve the right to delete any comments from flamers.
We now return to your regularly scheduled content.