I am pro-choice when it comes to abortion. I think it shouldn't be a decision that is made by anyone except those directly involved, and that's mainly the prospective parents and their chosen medical professionals. I do not think that abortion should be a form of birth control, however. There are women who routinely get an abortion instead of taking simple, effective, and prudent precautions against becoming pregnant. To be frank, and I may be opening Pandora's box and taking out a large can of worms, but I would not be against mandatory sterilization of both women and men who reproduce irresponsibly, and by that I mean for those people who have child after child and either can't or won't care for them correctly.
When social services departments take bruised, battered, starved, and raped children away from abusive or neglectful parents, one of the possible penalities should be sterilization. As a society, as a nation, as a WORLD, folks, we're overpopulated. It's a fact and one which seldom comes into the discussions about global warming and other environmental concerns. Sooner or later, the population growth on the planet is going to have to be addressed. It might not be in our lifetimes, but it will happen and there will have to be some really difficult decisions made about how to control it. Religion will have to take a backseat to those types of discussions/decision making procedures if anything is ever to be accomplished.
AND therein lies another fallacy of the abortion debate. The Bible's New Testament says nothing about abortion. And of course the Old Testament's respect for life is illustrated in Hosea 13:16...the Lord thunders: "They shall fall by the sword; their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up." Of course the faithful are not deterred. They believe in the old adage of "be fruitful, and mulitply, and replenish the earth. Well, I have news for these people...the Earth has been replenished...and replenished some more! Basically, all religions are simply anti-choice. And most of the religions in the world today are male-dominated, and if there's one thing that those religions can't tolerate is a woman who takes control. As Dan Barker of the Freedom From Religion Foundation says in his excellent book Losing Faith in Faith: ..."the New Testament presents women as being defiled and being less valued than men. Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived in the transgression. There are many places where Paul tells women to submit to their husbands, but never once is a husband told to submit to his wife. (Ephisions 5:22-23; Colossans 3:18."
Mr. Barker goes on to say that because of the Bible's attitude towards women, he thinks that therein lies the real drive behind the andiabortionists' stance: misogyny. He says "I don't believe that any one of them gives a hoot about a fetus. They care about this issue because it gives them a chance to flex their rightous muscles. It is a simplistic, open and shut matter to them, requiring little thought. They need this kind of thing to give them an opportunity to march around pretending to be morally concerned. If their marching tramples women's rights, feelings, and bodies, well, that is just fine. According to their Bible, women don't deserve fair treatment." LINKS: http://www.ffrf.org
and Losing Faith in Faith
by Dan Barker.
I tend to agree with Mr. Barker.
So, that being said, I thought this report from MSNBC was very interesting and one which might help get a friendly discussion going about a topic that, while an old one, is still something that can't and shouldn't be ignored.
HOW MUCH JAIL TIME?
Buried among prairie dogs and amateur animation shorts on YouTube is a curious little mini-documentary shot in front of an abortion clinic in Libertyville, Ill. The man behind the camera is asking demonstrators who want abortion criminalized what the penalty should be for a woman who has one nonetheless. You have rarely seen people look more gobsmacked. It's as though the guy has asked them to solve quadratic equations. Here are a range of responses: "I've never really thought about it." "I don't have an answer for that." "I don't know." "Just pray for them."
You have to hand it to the questioner; he struggles manfully. "Usually when things are illegal there's a penalty attached," he explains patiently. But he can't get a single person to be decisive about the crux of a matter they have been approaching with absolute certainty.
A new public-policy group called the National Institute for Reproductive Health wants to take this contradiction and make it the centerpiece of a national conversation, along with a slogan that stops people in their tracks: how much time should she do? If the Supreme Court decides abortion is not protected by a constitutional guarantee of privacy, the issue will revert to the states. If it goes to the states, some, perhaps many, will ban abortion. If abortion is made a crime, then surely the woman who has one is a criminal. But, boy, do the doctrinaire suddenly turn squirrelly at the prospect of throwing women in jail.
"They never connect the dots," says Jill June, president of Planned Parenthood of Greater Iowa. But her organization urged voters to do just that in the last gubernatorial election, in which the Republican contender believed abortion should be illegal even in cases of rape and incest. "We wanted him to tell the women of Iowa exactly how much time he expected them to serve in jail if they had an abortion," June recalled. Chet Culver, the Democrat who unabashedly favors legal abortion, won that race, proving that choice can be a winning issue if you force people to stop evading the hard facts. "How have we come this far in the debate and been oblivious to the logical ramifications of making abortion illegal?" June says.