August 11, 2008

Pro Choice - For All of You

Well, that's been a fun day. You'd think I wrote something controversial or something, grabbing the abortion debate by the horns.

My mail has been mostly supportive, but I have to tell you, I am shocked and appalled at the fallout from the younger generation. I'm hearing from women in their eighties begging me to keep reminding people of what they went through to get our reproductive rights even to this precarious position (yes, the Supreme Court repeatedly overthrows making abortion a crime - but it is not enshrined in law). But 20-year-olds? You can tell they have always had a great many things to take for granted.

One of my favourite assumptions? That because I have a couple of kids, I could never see any pregnancy as anything but welcome. It's the other way around, folks. If anything, I know exactly what it means to have a child, and therefore tend to not romanticize or underestimate the commitment and sacrifice required. You don't get to change your mind when the going gets tough.

Equal rights are for everyone, not just women. Reproductive freedom means you can have a child if you choose, but shouldn't be forced to continue an unwanted pregnancy. Abortion as birth control is heinous. Late term abortions on a whim are vile.

But the most disturbing thing? The people that just don't get the political positioning on this whole issue. Conservatives - the ones who would readily, happily criminalize abortion - are also chopping funding for women's services - battered women's shelters, education, birth control (how's the 'abstinence only' stuff working for everyone?).

So to all you little twits who believe you are doing some noble thing by getting pregnant and keeping your baby, and you need tax dollars to raise it, be very careful whose policies you are supporting. And parents, talk to your kids. Boys and girls are each as culpable in the event of a teen pregnancy. Birth control is safe, effective, and, unless we follow the U.S. down the Stupid Path, readily available.

But if you choose to have a baby you can't afford, I will still advocate for programs to help your child, because that is what respecting your right to choose means - supporting you even if you make a decision that I wouldn't make for myself.

To those able to sidestep the rhetoric (please - calling someone 'pro-abortion'? Surely you jest...), I thank you. For those who so firmly believe they are wise enough to bring down their judgement on others, be careful what you wish for. Consider the fact that your mother, sister, wife or daughter has stared down this barrel. Yes, they have. I'll guarantee it.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

There should be a program to prepare people to have kids. I'd almost say there should be a license, but you know how the government screws everything up. Can you imagine the government deciding who is responsible enough to raise kids? It's like handing a chimpanzee a bazooka.

August 11, 2008 8:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for being brave enough to open people's eyes on this issue. Young women either don't understand or appreciate the trail blazed by their mothers, grandmothers, etc. when it comes to issues like abortion or for that matter, equality in the workplace. Sometimes you wonder if it was worth the sacrifice. I see a lot of young women scoffing at their working mothers and basically taking us back 25 years. "If I wear a short skirt and flirt with the boss, that job will be mine" type attitude. Ah, sad.

August 12, 2008 9:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lorraine: Well said.

Off the beaten track here, but what's for supper or are you not back into home cooking yet?


August 12, 2008 4:58 PM  

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