The current political scene has (once again) brought the abortion issue to the forefront with the Religious Right loudly proclaiming their “Right to Life” mantra. (This time, they’re even sticking their noses into the use of contraceptives!)
Now they’re pushing for a nation-wide mandate that abortion providers perform an ultrasound on each woman seeking an abortion. This in itself is unnecessary (and costly, around $200) if the woman has made her decision, but they don’t stop there. They also want to require the provider to offer (encourage?) the woman an opportunity to view the image.*
Cal Thomas, syndicated columnist, recently asked this biased question: “Shouldn’t abortion-seeking women see the life they are about to end?” (I get so frustrated with men sticking their noses into this issue!)
There are several reasons why a woman will choose to have an abortion. The following statistics come from the National Right to Life website:
- Feels unready for child/responsibility – 25%
- Feels she can’t afford baby – 23%
- Has all the children she wants/Other family responsibilities – 19%
- Relationship problem/Single motherhood – 8%
- Feels she isn’t mature enough – 7%
From a woman’s point of view (the only one that counts), these are all valid reasons. After all, she’s the one who will be responsible for the major care of the child.
It’s been said that the recent anti-abortion comments made by certain Republican candidates are not “an attack on females.” Oh really? What do they call it?
I’m not going to get into the debate as to when a fetus becomes a ‘real’ human being. That’s way beyond my grade level – and, to my thinking, everyone else’s. But I will stand up for a woman’s right to do what she wants with her body. And no one – male or female – has the right to interfere.
*According to the Guttmacher Institute (a non-profit organization that works to advance abortion rights), seven states — Alabama, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas, and most recently, Virginia — now have this mandate in force.
ADDENDUM – February 10, 2014
So it’s pretty hard to assert that a developing organism within a womb is a separate human being until it is born and begins to form its own individual experiences of the world. Since men have no existential understanding of what it’s like to be pregnant, a man should not have any say on the issue of whether or not a woman has an abortion unless he is married to the pregnant woman and intends to offer financial and emotional support after the birth. Likewise, a woman should have no say on whether or not a man uses Viagra, unless she is his intimate partner.