I am a mother to two children. I have always wanted to be a mother, so abortion was never something I had to consider — but I have always been pro-choice because I support women’s rights. Any mother could tell you of the significant physical and emotional burden of carrying a baby to term, not to mention the act of giving birth. It’s an experience that carries more intimacy and vulnerability than the act that precedes it. I cannot imagine being forced to go through the birth process without having a choice in the matter, any more than I can imagine being forced into sex without consent.
The discussion surrounding abortion often focuses on the concept of morality from a religious perspective, or whether or not the fetus has legal rights. How about focusing on the issue from the position of what is acceptable and compassionate to the individual? It is the woman in question that lives with the painful decision to have a baby or not. Being forced to give birth to assuage other people’s consciences while doing damage to one’s self is tantamount to abuse. We as women deserve better.
Lisa Sumlak, Calgary.
It’s in part because of this view that ProWomanProLife was started. I strongly believe in women’s rights, and I am strongly against abortion. This is not a zero-sum game, that one side (the fetus) has rights and the other side (the woman) doesn’t, or vice versa. The two do not need to compete.
In fact, our culture is quite strange in putting this idea forward–I can only assume we’ve been told it so long that that we believe it to be true. But how are the mother’s rights trampled if she gives birth? Could that birth not be viewed as an extension of her rights? Is there something empowering about abortion? What might that action do to the woman and her state of mind, her ability to choose in the future?
I do disagree with this letter, but that’s not my point with this post. My point is that we simply aren’t very creative in considering abortion and women’s rights today, and we’ve accepted a worldview that may or may not hold water. We need to be asking a lot of questions, and if I could meet the author of this letter, I’d hope we could have a considerate discussion of all these things.