Aunt B. and I have been having a friendly blogchat about abortion over the last few days. I’ve enjoyed it and the level of civility in which it has taken place. As usual, I’ve even learned a few things. If nothing else, I’ve learned there are some interesting opinions out there on the matter.
I thought I would offer up a few of the more interesting comments and ideas and my response to them. These are in no particular order.
On several occasions Aunt B. and others seem to regard abortion as an issue for women only. They rail against men for trying to force our views on them with no understanding what they must endure. Oddly, they accept male support even though those men also lack any understanding. Why aren’t male supporters nauseating sycophants? Not to mention there are plenty of women who oppose abortion. This is not a woman’s issue at all. It is a moral issue. Abortion is either merely a removal of an unwanted lump of tissue or it is the intentional taking of a human life. That is true whether or not the factor of gender is introduced.
In comment #16 here a gal going by the moniker ahunt makes the following statement in response to my proposing that many women regret the decision to abort their child.
But as of now, the most thorough and ongoing research establishes that the emotional response of the vast majority of women who undergo an abortion is overwhelming relief.
I find it an interesting response since it is not a response at all. I never said women didn’t feel relief after an abortion. Given the circumstances under which many women have one, relief would be what I would expect when the momentary pressures they were under are lifted. However, after the momentary relief the rest of one’s life must be lived wherein one must deal with the enormity of one’s decision. The earlier relief is now irrelevant. In fact, it can compound later problems. Once a woman understands what she has done to her child in the name of expedience and realizes she was happy about it and comforted by it, her choice can be a heavy burden indeed. Making it even heavier is the truth that, since abortion is a permanent solution, there is no easy relief from exercising this particular choice. There is a difference with making a choice and your immediate response to your decision and living with the results. Ahunt and the proponents of relief miss this point.
Aunt B. has, on several occasions, made reference to the inherent danger she sees in pregnancy. The fear of being pregnant and the possibility of death or other dangers because of being pregnant seem to form a significant portion of the foundation of B’s insistence on a woman’s right to choose to abort her child. It seems as if she regards the relationship between a mother and her child as adversarial. Another commenter at her blog referred to the child a woman carries as a parasite sucking the life from her body.
These would seem to be views of pregnancy stuck in the 17th and 18th centuries. To seriously believe that abortion on demand is necessary because of the danger to a woman simply from being pregnant is ridiculous. According to the CDC,
The risk of death from complications of pregnancy has decreased approximately 99% during the twentieth century, from approximately 850 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births
in 1900 to 7.5 in 1982. However, since 1982, no further decrease has occurred in maternal mortality in the United States.
The majority of the current discussion of mortality due to pregnancy concerns the undeveloped world where the reported 500,000 annual deaths related to childbirth are said to be largely preventable with improved pre- and post-natal care. The point is that we have addressed those issues here in the US to the point where insisting on abortion on demand to address the “problem” of risk to the life of the mother borders on nonsense.
The current discussion started here and here over a new tactic abortion advocates are preparing. It asks the question, “If abortion should be illegal, how much jail time should a woman get if she has an illegal abortion?” I responded it was not necessary to criminalize the woman’s behavior in the event providing an abortion became a crime. That was the gist of anti-abortion laws before Roe v. Wade invalidated them. Aunt B. and others insist I hold women accountable for their behavior or I am turning back the clock and returning women to second class citizens.
Examining this argument reveals an interesting flaw. If women are to be held responsible for their choices, why is it only the choice to have an abortion that they are being held accountable for? Why are they not being held accountable for behavior that resulted in them getting pregnant? Other commenters respond that means a woman should not engage in sex, even with her husband, unless she is agreeing to possibly become pregnant. My response is to ask isn’t that all a part of the accountability process they are so fond of a few weeks into a pregnancy?
Abortion advocates want women to be able to have sex with whomever they want, whenever they want, with absolutely no accountability. Then, in the event their cholces lead to an unwanted result, a pregnancy, they want the woman to have access to abortion on demand so as to escape any accountability. Betting there won’t be any unintended social, physical or emotional consequences, women are now free and empowered to control their own bodies and lives. Unless of course abortion should become illegal. In THAT event, then women who choose to have an illegal abortion MUST be held accountable and punished. This from PRO-abortion people. Anything less and women are let off the hook from being accountable for their actions and lose all the progress they’ve gained. If this weren’t so tragic, it would be laughable.
Why is it that abortion is the accountability trigger? Why isn’t pregnancy? The more I look into the matter, the more I’m concluding it is because abortion advocates are so enamored with their freedoms they have forgotten their responsibilities. Abortion MUST be available or women aren’t free or masters of their own destiny is what the argument boils down to. For the advocates for the life of the child, this statement becomes, “It is necessary for me to be able to end my child’s life if I choose to in order that my life might be more full.”
Abortion advocates claim the child a woman carries is a fetus, an embryo, tissue, a clot, a parasite or a threat to the mother’s life. They must. If they call it a child, then the horrors of 43 million murders in 35 years for which they, by their own argument, should be held accountable overwhelms the mind and emotions! The problem is, they cannot prove it is not a child. Oh, they have arguments and research and studies and opinions and on and on and on to “support” their position. Once again, they have to tell themselves this because the alternative is beyond horrible to contemplate.
But science can be off. What if life begins at conception? What if it begins at 6 weeks? Two months? And how can one know for sure. Viability of life outside the womb used to be the unassailable barrier to determine the beginning of life. That point has been moved back again and again since 1973.
Science can be wrong! Just this week there are reports the gold standard of unbreakable laws of science, the speed of light, may fall by the wayside. If that proves true, how can we state with certainty that abortion does not take the life of a child? Even if the speed of light proves immune to this attempt to break it, what does it say that scientists are still trying to accomplish it? It says science and its pronouncements are always to be taken with the caveat, “as best we can tell with today’s knowledge!” Today’s certainty is tomorrow’s ignorance.
The application of the lesson to abortion is obvious. Abortion advocates deny the humanity of the child within the womb not because they know it to be non-human but because they need it to be. A commenter at my blog took me to task for saying that most abortions were simply matters of convenience. She made it a matter of need. The only need here is for abortion advocates to be sure their ranks never stop talking about the woman’s right to choose and begin looking at a baby’s right to life! It all boils down to that – is the occupant of a woman’s womb a child or just tissue?
Pro-abortion people self righteously denounce my efforts to force my version of morality on them by restricting or eliminating abortion. I’m an intolerant, ignorant monster unconcerned with the needs and health of women. If they are right about what rides in women’s wombs then they are right about me. Unasked by them and too horrible to contemplate is the answer to the question, “And what if you are wrong?” It all boils down to that. Is it a child or just a choice? What sort of person simply assumes the most horrific side of the equation is untrue simply to justify getting what they want?
Thinking that it’s a child, not a choice, or at least the serious possibility that is true, would be obvious to an objective observer …
Blue Collar Muse