Abortion has been a hot-button issue for as long as I can remember. Whole elections have been won or lost depending on a candidate’s platform on the subject. There are Pro-Life and Pro-Choice groups abounding in every region in the country. So, my question is this: why doesn’t anyone ever look at both sides of the issue?
I was raised Catholic, and while I no longer follow that dogma, I still agree with the Church’s view on the sanctity of life, no matter what state and/or federal law may have to say about it. Why? Because I’m a firm believer in the fact that everything—yes, even the bad stuff—happens for a reason. That baby was meant to be here, and you were meant to be its parent. So, yes, I’m anti-abortion. Notice I didn’t say Pro-Life. There is a very distinct difference. Because while I am anti-abortion, I’m also Pro-Choice.
Now, I’m sure to some of the more fundamentally-minded, black-or-white-view people, this sounds like a contradiction of the highest sort. So let me explain why I choose to define myself thusly. There are two major reasons: 1) Just because you outlaw abortion doesn’t mean it’s going to stop; and 2) I have NO RIGHT to make that decision for someone else.
Ever since history has been recorded in the most primitive of civilizations, women have found means to rid themselves of unwanted offspring. Using passive methods like childsbane or hemlock (poisonous herbs) to shed a fetus to more drastic measures like being pushed down stairs or struck in the abdomen to the even more harmful method—to child and mother—of alcoholic and drug abuse, pregnancies have been terminated. These are by no means the only ways to abort a baby, but they are some of the more commonly used options. So, what makes you think that some federally mandated law that prohibits hospital- and clinic-sponsored abortions is going to make them stop? To use a very graphic example: I would rather be in a clean, monitored, sterile environment that, though it may cost more, gives me a better chance of survival than in a back alley, paying some street doctor with no medical license to speak of $50 to stick a rusty coat hanger into my insides. Explicit? Yes. But unfortunately, not implausible.
Besides, I have enough trouble managing my own life: where to live, where to work, who to date, etc. and so on; what on earth would make me feel competent enough to proclaim that I had the right to run somebody else’s life for them? Every woman in the world has the right to decide what to do with her own body. If you were careless enough to get knocked-up by your 17-year-old boyfriend with no job, that’s your own damn fault. I may think it’s stupid, but that doesn’t give me the right to tell you that you have no choice other than to have this baby. Personally, I really hate it when someone tells me what to do, and if that attitude is anywhere near as prevalent among the teenage mothers as I think it is, saying something like that would push many of them into getting an abortion just because someone said that they couldn’t.
Please, don’t misunderstand me. I’m not advocating legalizing abortion as an easy-out or an excuse for casual sexual relations. I am against abortion in any form, except the extenuating circumstances in which the mother’s life is in extreme danger. Even then, if it is at all possible, save them both. There are always other options to abortion; adoption, for example. You may not want this baby, but chances are somebody, somewhere, who can’t have children of their own, will. Give them that chance. And even if you can’t see where I’m coming from, at least realize that this issue is not as clear-cut as it seems. Why can’t somebody make a platform out of that?