That dirty F-word: Feminism
The above denotes a column I found in passing recently. It belongs to the West Georgian, a newspaper belonging to the University of West Georgia, and I am highly impressed with the intelligence and quality of this column. The author is well-versed in the subject, and has been able to intelligently defend her stance in spite of some negative feedback in the comments. So, in homage to the article, I've decided to express my views on the matter. Anyone who would like to point out places where my thoughts may be unsound, or I lack some sort of education on the matter, please feel free to comment. I'll respond in a timely manner.
Abortion: it's probably one of the touchiest issues in American culture right now. I won't speak for the rest of the world. It's definitely up there with homosexuality, the death penalty, immigration, the war in Iraq, terrorism, and racism. There is a lot of room for intolerance as far as debate goes.
As for me, I'm Pro-Life. Not just because I'm Christian, and therefore "have to be", but because I know that I personally could never go through with an abortion without feeling guilty for the rest of my life. I would be plagued with imagining what the child would have been like, and what it could have done for the world. Even if I didn't want a child, I would know that there are many families that want children very badly but cannot conceive, and my baby could have brought them happiness. That, too, would drive me deeper into guilt.
I believe that life begins at conception, because science tells us that cells are alive. That cell becomes what we are - human beings, living, breathing, thinking. Only God knows when the soul is implanted, and when thoughts begin.
But my beliefs effect only my decisions. I can share my beliefs with people, but I should not be given the power to prevent them from making their own decision. If abortion was made illegal, then people would still have abortions. People will always have abortions. They would just have the abortions in unsafe ways. Then these women would die, along with their unborn babies, and we would lose two lives, instead of one. There are radical pro-life groups out there that take protesting to the extreme, and make the women who have abortions out to be complete monsters. Sex hungry whores. Baby killers.
I had a friend once who was opposed to using contraception because she didn't like the feel of condoms while having sex. She was impregnated several times, and each time, though I begged her to go to an abortion clinic if she insisted on getting rid of the baby, she preformed the abortion herself by pressing hard on her stomach. This is dangerous -- if it didn't work, it could have injured the baby severely, made her sterile, or made delivery very difficult. In doing this (several times) she could have injured herself to the point where she would be unable to have children in the future, if she chose to.
The reason that she chose not to go to a clinic was that she was afraid that she would be harrassed by others, kicked out of my high school (which does not allow any girl to attend who is or has ever been pregnant), and shunned by her family. She didn't want to have children, and she couldn't consider carrying the baby for adoption purposes because that would alert others to her pregnancy. So she took matters into her own hands.
The point of the above story: people shouldn't be made to feel guilty about the choices that they make by people who don't understand their situation. Trust me: no matter what, you have no right to judge. If you don't believe, read the Bible. God agrees with me.
If you really don't like the fact that someone you know is getting an abortion, you can talk to them and try to understand why they want to get an abortion and whether it is possible to change their mind. But in the end, it's their choice, not yours, and taking away that choice would be a violation of freewill. It's constitutionally protected. Look it up.
And if you really want to decrease the number of abortions, then swallow the fact that people are going to have sex. As this is the case, education on sex, and tools that can help prevent pregnancy and STDs would really be the best way to go. There is no double standard for sex, and a woman is not going to turn into a whore if she decides to have sex.
True, abstinence is the only course that guarentees being pregnancy and STD free, but that is a post for another time.
Friday, April 25, 2008
That dirty F-word: Feminism