One Progressive’s View: The Abortion Debate 12/28/2011
I have just read an article this morning that said that Rick Perry, GOP presidential contender has just made a pledge to a “Personhood USA” where he commits to anti-abortion even in the case of rape or incest. He is a signatory to the pledge along with Michelle Bachman, Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich (the epitome of moral rectitude) and Ron Paul. Ron Paul, the Libertarian, who is ok with legalizing marijuana and prostitution, but still wants to put that lock box on a woman’s womb. These folks are playing for the red-meat crowd. It is like an auction, one trying to be just that more outrageous than the others. The next concession is that they all pledge to oppose abortion even if the life of the mother is in danger, wait and see. This rightwing stuff will surely turn off independents. Is the GOP insane? But we already know the answer to that. I am counting on a nice altercation between the moderates and the fanatics, each disqualifying the other in the run against Mr. Obama next year.
This is a very contentious issue for us all. While I am pro-choice, I can support legislation that makes abortion more difficult at the late stages of pregnancy. Particularly, at and beyond the point that the fetus can live outside of its mother’s body. The state has a vested interest in preserving life and that is reasonable. But, that has to be balanced with rights of the mother. Thoughtful conservatives and progressives can discuss this and may well agree to disagree. While, I believe that life begins at conception based on philosophical and spiritual beliefs, that is where it ends. My neighbor has a different view and he or she may well not subscribe to the same principles that I do. Being a progressive, I am uncomfortable with those that want to apply their rules and regulations to those most private and intimate aspect of the lives of others. So, somewhere between the point of conception and very late stages of pregnancy, there is room to debate the ethics of this process.
The right-winger and it appears that the aforementioned people mentioned earlier in this article are such, are fanatical and extreme by their very nature. Making mothers carry a pregnancy to term after rape or incest is unconscionable. Who do these people think they are? I never had a high opinion of right-wingers, generally. A woman is not an incubating machine. The words roll from their tongues so easily when none of these ‘candidates’ face such things in their own lives. What is the arrogance in thinking that they have a right to force a woman to carry such a pregnancy to term when it is her own physical body involved and the discomfort and mental anguish is hers alone to bear for 9 months. These “fembots” are to be told that ‘lemons can become lemonade’? Yeah, right. The victim bears no responsibility for these kinds of pregnancies, how dare they force the individual to carry to term.
Let’s say that the right-wingers prevail and the push for the legislation that they all say that they support is successful. Since life starts at conception for these folks, who is going to tell the authorities that a woman is pregnant, so that the state can know to begin monitoring the woman? It has to be possible for a woman to ingest toxins or the RU-486 overnight pill to terminate a pregnancy. So, now, there has to be someone that watches what she eats and drinks. Conservatives have had 40 years to try to overturn Roe Vs Wade. I know that they would prefer a constitutional amendment to ban abortion nationwide. But there are too many progressive states and influences and it just ain’t going to happen. But if they can have the landmark decision overturned and the decision making relegated to states, how would that work? Woman that can’t get an abortion in South Dakota can take the drive to relatively progressive Colorado to have the procedure done, anyway. You still lose. But, the right-winger and its legislatures will want to pass laws restricting the movement of women who are pregnant. I don’t have to tell anyone what that will lead to
Our Thoroughly Modern Maidens
Not being female, I can only guess. But, I would be concerned that considering the work over the last century to get some degree of parity in a male dominated society,is my
life, aspirations and ambitions being firmly linked to my reproductive function?. Is it a sinister plan to return me to a domesticated role? How does all of this affect your ability to compete for resources and opportunities outside the affairs of your intimate and personal life? In the interests of my “protection” what other laws are being contemplated that enhances and buttresses the new rightwing abortion laws? It takes two to tango, you know. Are men imposed upon in this manner, commensurate to their role in the pregnancy? It seems like another way to take the already structural disadvantages in the workplace that women have to contend with and exacerbate them ten fold. All this may well need to be adjudicated with my concern of a violation of the 4th amendment to the Constitution prohibiting unreasonable search and seizure.
So when each of the “Fab 5” proposes banning abortion even in the case of rape and incest, I think that they bite off more than they can chew. They know that this will never happen within this diverse society of ours and they are just pandering to gain favor. So, I share with my conservative friend and warn the right-winger, that you had better find another way….