Posted by: CeCe | April 20, 2012

Stop saying that!

This is something that’s really been bothering me for some time, and I figure it’s about time for me to get it off my chest.  Before I do, I’d just like to be clear that this is not a condemnation against women who have had abortions.  I previously published a post about abortion (here), and in it I’m clear that my problem is that women feel they have no choice but to have an abortion.  I’m very sympathetic regarding this issue.  But there’s something that happens in arguments about abortion that absolutely drives me nuts.  So without further ado, I bring to you, things pro-choice advocates need to stop saying:

1)  It’s not really a life.  This is just dishonest.  By the time a woman knows she’s pregnant, her baby already has a heartbeat and his or her own DNA.  His or her organs are forming.  There’s no other way to define it except as a life.
2)  It’s a parasite.  What I find really amazing (and disgusting) about this view is that it changes based upon whether or not the pregnancy is wanted.  I keep wondering if the people who call a fetus a parasite have ever gone up to a pregnant woman and said, “Oh I see you’ve got a parasite growing inside of you!”  I would guess not.  But seriously, a woman wants the pregnancy=it’s a baby!  A woman doesn’t want the pregnancy=It’s a disgusting parasite, cut it out of her!!  I don’t understand how something can change definition like that.  Either it’s a human life, or it’s not.  It doesn’t change based on whether or not it’s wanted.
3)  It’s a blastocyst.  Many times when I see people say this, they’re trying to sound more intelligent and educated than they are.  Guys, the blastocyst stage ends only a few days after fertilization.  By the time a woman has an abortion, the pregnancy has progressed to at least the embryonic stage.  Please stop calling it a blastocyst.  Just stop.
4)  “Anti-choicers” are sexist.  While some people who are against abortion are sexist, there are many who are against it not because they hate women, but because they find abortion to be an absolutely disgusting and morally reprehensible act.  I know, novel concept, right?  Most of the time, this reaction to abortion is not inspired by a desire to subjugate women, but a desire to convince people that abortion is wrong.  Stop with the “everyone who doesn’t think like me is a bigot” crap.
5)  Thousands of women died from self-induced abortions every year before Roe vs. Wade.  This is not true.  While the number of women who died from self-induced abortion was high prior to WWII (about 2000-3000), every year after the discovery of penicillin saw a steady decrease.  In the year before Roe vs. Wade, there were 39 deaths from illegal abortion.  Keep in mind that childbirth in and of itself was extremely dangerous prior to the late 1940s; of course abortion was dangerous.  It would have been just as dangerous had it been legal.  So please stop with the “thousands of women will wind up using coathangers” argument.  If abortion were ever illegalized (which I’m not in favor of, for the record), many women would go ahead and do what they did before Roe vs. Wade: Go to real doctors to have an abortion performed.

I am an equal opportunity writer, however, and I don’t think this post would be complete if I didn’t criticize the other side too.  Things those against abortion need to stop saying:
1)   Abortion is a sin!   The Bible says… This argument is invalid for many people, because either they don’t believe abortion is a sin, or they don’t believe in sin, period.  What good does it do to tell them abortion is a sin?  It’s much like being told that eating pork is haram.  It’s meaningless to anyone who doesn’t believe such things.
2)  Murderer!  Baby killer!  I know it’s hard to believe, but most women don’t make the decision to have an abortion lightly.  Calling them names on top of it just makes it worse, both by degrading and demeaning the woman, and by further polarizing the issue.  If there is ever to be any hope of abortion becoming few and far between, it’s the act and not the person that should be addressed.
3)   Stop having sex if you don’t want to get pregnant!  First of all, I know it’s rare, but women can became pregnant from rape, and therefore shouldn’t be blamed if they feel they can’t handle the pregnancy and should have an abortion.  So telling women to just not have sex doesn’t work for all situations.  Secondly, telling people to just not have sex is not realistic at all.  Of course people are going to have sex.

I’ve said before that people need to concentrate on decreasing the number of abortions instead of legislating it.  I’d also say that both sides have a tendency of using ridiculous, outdated, irrelevant arguments to make their point.  So please, let’s just be honest about abortion.  Let’s use real statistics and biology.  Unless and until we can do that, we’ll never be able to make abortion the rare occurrence it should be, because we’ll always be at odds.

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