Addressing the misconceptions in arguments used against the Pro-Choice stand and asserting a woman’s right to her reproductive choices.
When a human being gets pregnant, she has 3 choices – parenthood/adoption/abortion. This human being will always be a woman – the second sex as termed by DeBeauvoir in 1949 – and it still stands true today.
No thanks to puritanical leaders and a society obsessed with judging others if only to make themselves feel better – issues pertaining to sex and women are still dealt with much taboo and stigma.
The issue at core is human rights, a woman’s right to her reproductive choices.
The Pro-Choice stand asserts those rights – it is not advocating abortion as the means to an end to public-health and social problems such as baby-dumping, teenage pregnancies, and certainly not as the method of family planning. What Pro-Choice stands for is the adult humyn’s right to choice to continue or terminate her pregnancy.
Civil society and human rights activists are always fighting for the freedom and right to choice – for the empowerment of certain groups in society – yet womyn are being stripped off their right to reproductive choices – and people are blind to this! We live in a world that has gotten so used to telling womyn what is acceptable and what is not.
To venture slightly off tangent – society nor the government are very supportive or sympathetic to pregnant teens – they do get expelled the moment they get pregnant. They also speak of adoption as if it’s like offering up a second hand book for takers – announce it and someone’s bound to snap the offer and pay for all your medical expenses?! It’s not like many of these women and teens from the lower income group have an iPhone to tweet up their offer.
I shall not go into defending abortion and the numerous desperate situations that drive womyn to abortion – it has been done here.
All this talk about rights but what about the right of the foetus? Well, what about it? Pro-Lifers fall-back defence for its stand against legalising abortion is that “we need to defending the rights of those who don’t yet have a voice.” But at the expense of a person who is already fully formed? It’s a zygot, embryo, foetus, – not yet, not quite as humyn as its carrier.
The bloody images you see when you Google “abortion” does not win it any fans. We’re not fans of it either, (remember it’s pro-choice not abortion advocacy) but we also see beyond the butchering what our eyes can’t see – we see the womyn who is not happy but relieved that she needn’t bring an unwanted child to this earth.
While civil society has come together to laud sex education as the way forward, cogently arguing that not talking about sex isn’t going to stop anyone from trying to have sex – they fail to see the same about abortion. Legalising abortion isn’t going to send people into a frenzy of unprotected sex(isn’t this the same line of thought with condoms and sex education encourage “free sex”?) – it isn’t something women look forward to or wish for.
Like contraception – preventive measures are not 100% successful. Sometime a “cure” is needed. So while all this about focusing on preventive measures on the root of the cause after the recent spate of baby dumping is the right thing to do – and I don’t doubt that any person Pro-Life or Pro-Choice would object – cutting off a “cure” is just an act in denial of the facts of life.
The fact is that there will always be women who end up in the predicament where abortion is the “best” or only option for her and right now they are being forced to turn to illegal abortions that are often downright unsafe. Deaths and complications due to botched abortions is an issue of public health. Legalise abortion, regulate it, monitor it. Educating women and men alike about all three options and impressing the physiological and psychological risks of abortions is the way forward.
Sex is a basic human need. Womyn have sexual needs. No contraceptive is 100% safe. Unwanted pregnancies happen. There will always be the economically disadvantaged with little access to education. There will always be wives with no say in her family planning. Unwanted pregnancies happen.
Human rights is fundamentally about the right to choice. Take that away and any ensuing good intentioned measures would already be unjust to the subjected group of people.
The decision needs to be entrusted to the adult, the woman whose body it concerns, whose future is at stake. A caring society would support education, not stigmatise, not judge and not punish those already being punished by their circumstance.
Abortion is a personal choice, not a political or moral policing debate.
And people who will never ever possibly get pregnant – shut up or I’ll cut your reproductive choices too. Unlike another LoyarBurokker who has been biting in his statements, my bite can be quite literal.
[UPDATED 5.15p.m. 25 Aug 2010] Note: The writer is addressing the broader issue of womyn’s rights and believes that in the event that abortion is legalised, it should be consistent existing laws protecting minors.
LB: Ong Jo-Lene is a work in progress. To date, the pillars of social norms have been deconstructed, a yellow brick road is being laid and decorated with tid-bit information and tv quotes. When Lord Bobo isn’t mind controlling her, she goes astray at Mindfuxxx.
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