Grabbing the Third Rail with Both Hands

So, I’ve been listening to a lot of the coverage of Sarah Palin and her daughter and it’s gotten me thinking about abortion. This is one of the political issues that my wife and I don’t see eye to eye on. That’s largely because she’s very decidedly pro-choice and I’m largely indecided.

While I could get into it in more detail here, that’s not the point of this post.  The point is that I think I’ve finally figured out what it is that bothers me about the abortion debate.  Pro-lifers are clearly anti-abortion.  I am not clearly anti-abortion, so I don’t really feel like that qualifies me as pro-life.  At the same time, I don’t feel like I’m pro-choice, either, but I could never figure out why I felt that way.  Last night, it struck me why.

I don’t think pro-choice is the proper term any longer.  Most of the pro-choice people I’ve heard from are actually pro-abortion.  Any time someone is condemned or even criticized for making the choice to bring a pregnancy to term, you’ve moved out of the realm of pro-choice.  They had a choice.  They made their choice.  If you don’t like the choice they made, then you’re not pro-choice, you’re pro-abortion.

It bothers me that educational material is banned from abortion clinics.  If you’re pro-choice, then materials about adoption and going through with a pregnancy are vital to ensuring a person has the opportunity to make an informed choice.  Remove those options, and you’re not allowing for choice.  I’m also not a big fan of the opposition to parental notification for underage girls.  Teenagers are not considered old enough to make any number of smaller decisions about their life.  Why allow them to rashly decide something that could have a long lasting psychological impact without any sort of guidance whatsoever?

With all that said, you might wonder how I don’t consider myself pro-life.  Well, I’m not entirely against abortion.  I do absolutely oppose abortion as a form of birth control.  That said, I understand that there are extreme circumstances in the world.  I can sympathize with women who may be victims of rape or incest.  I can understand if a girl may face abuse and torment at home for a pregnancy.  I can allow for a number of instances where an abortion may, ultimately, be the better decision.

What bothers me, though, is that there’s no debate, and the pro-abortion people have co-opted the word “choice.”  Thus, if you’re not pro-abortion, then you’re also not pro-choice, and thus you’re wrong.  There can be no discussion about the father’s rights, there can be no discussion about education, there can be no discussion about anything that might put limits on abortions because that immediately moves you into the realm of misogyny and abortion haters.

There is no middle ground on this issue, and that’s irritating as hell to me.

Published in: on September 6, 2008 at 7:12 am  Leave a Comment  
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