I Care

Last night I watched The Rachel Maddow Show when I got home from class. The last half discussed the assassinations of abortion doctors in the 90s. Each had had wanted posters posted about them before they were shot.

And then we saw today’s wanted posters direct from North Carolina.

I am … I want to say pissed but my dad hates when I used that word, and right now it does not encompass the rage and sadness and frustration and WHAT-IS-WRONG-WITH-PEOPLE!!! boiling inside me. I’m having conversations with extreme antis in my head (which is definitely not helping my midterm insomnia problem). I’ve gone through the typical arguments you think of when you somehow convince yourself that you can reason with these people. I’ve told Mr. and Mrs. Anti-Woman that they are not thinking about women, that no one should make life choices for other people, and that parenthood should in no way be used as a punishment. When I got to the part about back-alley abortions and the deaths of so many cherished lives, I had an epiphany. I realized they do not care. At all. They do not look at that ghostly picture of the woman who had died from an unsafe abortion and think “tragedy.” They probably see justice (and just writing that nauseates me). They do not care.

So to Mr. and Mrs. and Ms. Anti-Choice, for your information:

I care. I care for the woman who has this decision to make. I care for the woman who feels compelled to make it. I care for the woman who decided to adopt. I care for the woman who was ready to have and raise a child. I care for the woman sterilized without her permission. I care for the teenager with no adult to turn to, and the one with a supporting family. I care for the woman denied her rights because of circumstance. And for all of the other instances unnamed here, I care.

I am not alone, and we outnumber you. Our caring manifests itself in action, so if you think that you can repeat your terrorist acts of the 1990s, think again. We are ready; we are brave; and we are not backing down. Our families, our mothers, our sisters, our friends, our daughters, our selves are worth this fight.

3 thoughts on “I Care

  1. I know this was posted a while ago but a few thoughts and questions…

    1st) To be open, if you did not already have an idea, I am not 100% sure what side I stand on in this issue, however, if forced my instinct is to say that I am against abortion.

    2nd) I agree that it is wrong to be assassinating anyone. It is not our job to take others lives, which is why I lean towards not wanting abortions, because I believe that it is taking a life.

    3rd)I would never wish the back-alley situation you described on anyone no matter what brought them there. I also agree that parenthood shouldn’t be a punishment. Many people who get pregnant should not be parents however, maybe that means 1 of 2 things.
    a.)They should not have had sex in the first place
    b.) They should give their child up for adoption

    4th)How could it be distinguished who is getting an abortion for birth control vs. when their own health is endanger? Is it our job to do so? In that case, who is “our”? As a society we need to share and respect ideas but if someones idea is having human sacrifices whenever they decide, we would stop them, so how is taking the life of an unborn and defenseless baby any different?

    I hope this doesn’t come off judgmental. I have not researched this issue but don’t feel like I have the information to support my initial claims. I’m interested in your response.

    • This conversation is going to be more and longer than comments on this post, but I’m glad we are starting it.

      First, a person can both be pro-choice and uncomfortable with abortion. While the anti-choice side may like to portray pro-choice people as pro-abortion, what we are is pro-woman, pro-baby and pro-family. I truly believe if pro-choice activists weren’t spending all of their time just trying to hold back the wave of anti-choice legislation and protests and violence, all of the smart, strong, wonderful activists I am privileged to know could work on the root causes of abortion. I want to live in a world where a woman doesn’t have to choose between a pregnancy she wants and the children she already has because of economic reasons (this reason is high, if not at the top, of the list of reasons given for terminating a pregnancy).

      To your third point, the two options you are offering are borne out of your own code. We all must be careful not to impose our beliefs on other people. Heck, you could have said in “a”: They should not have had heterosexual sex in the first place. That’s a guaranteed way not to get pregnant! As far as adoption, please read this post and the comments. Remember, a woman is in the best position to know what is best for her and for her family. I believe in trusting her. I would trust you, and I expect that you would trust me. I have friends that have made all three decisions (keep, adopt or abort). Each one made the decision that made sense for her in her situation. A woman may or may not choose abortion for many different reasons, and even if we do not agree, it is best if we trust her to her decision.

      And just as a final note, I believe there is a VAST difference between a human sacrifice and terminating a pregnancy. If you disagree, you and I should talk about that. Let’s focus on happy, healthy, wanted families with happy, healthy, excited mothers and happy, healthy, wanted babies.

      I hope I do not come across judgmental either. These conversations are important ones to have and thank you for your courage in starting this one. Let’s keep talking, here or elsewhere.

    • Your 4th question has me thinking, and I think it highlights one of the problems with abortion policy as it now stands. Right now, there are a lot of limitations on abortions and restricted access to funding for abortions. Many of these rules say that, if it’s to protect the life of the pregnant woman (and sometimes her health), then it’s an OK medical procedure.

      But it does seem to me that there can be a lot of overlap or gray area when we get to talking about mental health, or quality of life for a family moving forward, or ability to have children (physically & financially) in the future, or making a healthy choice to leave an abusive partner, or any number of situations where birth control is indeed an essential part of health and well-being.

      So whose job is it to make these decisions? I would say it’s entirely up to the pregnant woman and whoever she wants to involve in the decision, whether it’s her doctor, partner, clergy, family, friends, or none of the above. I don’t want a voice in her choice, just like I don’t want her voice in my choices. And I trust her enough that these difficult choices aren’t being made “whenever,” with no thought about their impact.

      And I’ll echo what Carrie said below — it’s entirely possible to be pro-choice and never want to choose abortion for yourself. All I want is for women and families to be able to make the choices that work the best for them.

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