I wanted to be a father. My wife wanted to be a mother. We wanted children. We made it happen. It was our choice.
Our three children had no choice in the matter. None of them waltzed into this world on happy feet. No one does.
Babies are abducted, pulled out of their cozy watery cocoon against their will into cold uncharted waters. PLOP. They gasp, cry, squirm, and plot revenge. They will torment their abductors and rob them of their sanity.
Babies wail for hours, day and night. They smugly refuse food, or merrily take it and gleefully spit it out. They stealthily befoul their nappies, blithely smear feces hither and yon, slyly swallow marbles, gag, turn blue, and stop your heart.
And they do it all again the next day and the next until suddenly your baby is a kid with flamboyant hair, weird tats, a sassy mouth, and a haughty attitude. Kids can drive you crazy. It helps if you wanted them in the first place. You can’t return them.
Many women want to be mothers. Not all women do. Some can’t be mothers.
The mere prospect of being a mother terrifies some women, for many reasons. But things happen. Some pregnancies are unintended, unwanted, forced, gravely problematic. No woman should ever be forced to give birth against her will or better judgment.
Abortion is a solution. It can be legal, safe, and rare. Shame on those who make it criminal.
In a democracy, everyone has the right to protect the well-being of their own bodies. In a theocracy, there’s no such guarantee.
Seventeenth-century Puritans established a theocracy in Massachusetts. In the name of their god, they tortured women, killed Indians, and even hanged Quakers.
The founders of our nation wanted no part of theocracies or state religion. Hence, the Constitution of the United States does not allow the Church to dictate state policies. Separating Church and state and guaranteeing free speech may be the founders’ greatest achievements.
Nearly all who oppose abortion do so on religious grounds. Fine. If your faith regards an abortion as a sin, don’t get one. But do not prohibit a choice to those who don’t share your religion. The United States was founded as a secular nation, not a Christian one.
If you want a theocracy, move to Afghanistan. The Taliban is your cup of tea.
See Paula’s new photo on the home page. Posted May 22
The creeping in of Christian sharia law. Progress in the wrong direction.
The theologically-driven Supreme Court is poised to overturn Roe. But this is just the tip of the anti-democracy movement in the U.S. Plans are being made to enact laws to ban contraception, gay marriage and impose the “Christian moral order” on the nation—
According to scholar Richard T. Hughes in his book Myths American Lives By, many Christians have tried to control the narrative and culture throughout American history…Donald Trump promised to restore “the golden age of the 1950’s” when he promised to “protect Christianity” which, he claimed, was “under siege.”
The power of choice is vital… the reproductive right needs to be affirmed, not taken away.
I can only add that after the joy and pain of parenthood, if you’re lucky you get blessed with the unmitigated joy of being a grandparent. I’ve often thought how presumptuous it is to think we know the mind of God. Maybe he or she doesn’t care about what we do with our bodies–maybe, just maybe, the great one cares more about how we treat each other.
All I can say is yes! I agree! So succinct, so compassionate, so true…thank you🙏🏼💓
There is no freedom without bodily autonomy. What human hubris and arrogance to enslave a woman for 9 months in the name of the Almighty.
Right on, brother!!
Time to limit terms for Congress and SCOTUS.
“Between the Christianity of this land and the Christianity of Christ, I recognize the widest possible difference—so wide that to receive the one as good, pure, and holy, is of necessity to reject the other as bad, corrupt, and wicked. To be the friend of the one is of necessity to be the enemy of the other. I love the pure, peaceable, and impartial Christianity of Christ; I therefore hate the corrupt, slave-holding, women-whipping, cradle-plundering, partial and hypocritical Christianity of this land. Indeed, I can see no reason but the most deceitful one for calling the religion of this land Christianity… .” Douglass, Frederick, and William Lloyd Garrison. Narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass, an American slave, Appendix at 118. Boston: Anti-Slavery Office, 1849.
Overturning Roe/Casey, is quite simply SCOTUS proscribing religion from the bench and returns America to pre-Roe days of a hodgepodge of state laws that Roe initially attempted to reconcile, however imperfectly. The modification of Roe by Casey in 1992 really started the nation toward the culmination that we are currently witnessing. Term limits, as suggested by one commentator, might be appropriate for SCOTUS, but on a congressional level only assures us of being governed by a rotation of rank amateurs. We already have term limits; they are called elections. What’s wrong with the system is that the electorate doesn’t vote, but loves to complain.
Kamala Harris asked Kavanaugh during his hearing if there were any laws that controlled mens’ bodies. He sputtered and mumbled. She said, just say yes or no. He finally said no. She said thank you, that’s all.
If it is possible, I am both pro-life and pro-choice. Pro-life because I am generally against Man’s taking of the one thing that is beyond his capacity to create – life. (I’m also against capital punishment.) Pro-choice because I don’t think the Government or the Church have any business mucking around in a woman’s decision in the matter. It seems that the fundamentalists who are convinced God speaks through them and therefore see Abortion as a sin are willing to lift up even the most venal of politicians on this issue, giving this priority over all social interests that government is supposed to serve. I don’t understand it. And the Republicans, who used to stand for minimal government interference, well,…
Rape, incest, medical necessity – inconvenience – Those are all considerations for the woman concerned to think about and seek counsel through prayer or soulsearching, starting from the premise that all life is precious. But government and religion should not dictate her decision.
Thank you to everyone who has subsequently responded so thoughtfully. I am in agreement with what has been shared today. You did a beautiful job of pointing out that pro-choice is not anathema to pro-life, as many pro-choice protestors would have us believe. All choices are legal under pro-choice, including pro-life.
In the 21st century, it is alarming that we have a SCOTUS that can even contemplate reversal. As friends have been noting, at both state and federal levels, why have civil rights suddenly started being withdrawn rather than maintained or expanded?
Here is an ironic fact: Most abortions that are used as contraception are used by single, teenage girls. Sex education in school, removal of shame for what they view as normal behavior, and easy access to the varieties of contraception would make a significant difference. Sex Ed, etc. in schools? OMG, why, that violates my rights as a parent…!! Gee, I wish you could have it both ways, parents. Nimrods. Your daughters (& sons) are kind of “damned if they do and damned if they don’t.” Education is not advocacy, any more than pro-choice is pro-abortion.
Having children is a CHOICE. Not a, well you get married and have kids. Not!! There are women out there that never wanted children, like me. Forcing women to bring a life into the world that they don’t want is dangerous! So they raise this kid they never wanted in the first place. Abuse her/him physically and verbally, then turn them out into the world. Then we wonder why the prisons are full of angry, violent individuals who committed horrible crimes. Abortion must remain a woman right to choose.
Thou shall not kill is one commandment and is a law on the books in most if not all jurisdictions. Most pregnancies are planned or because of poor planning except for rape which are few. Personhood beginnings vary by scientists but a full personhood is about 14 weeks which is plenty of time to decide to destroy a fetus. Waiting until later could reap some benefits of pregnancy but it also progresses into personhood and if destroyed could be a homicide.
Where to begin? America can be a pretty stupid country. The entire ‘debate’ is off-target. As you mentioned, abortion should be safe, legal, and RARE. I think most people can agree on that! The percentage of abortions in our country could come down considerably if we put our minds to it: planned parenthood, better education, free birth control, frank discussions about human sexuality . . .