There are several posts, articles, and blogs circulating around the Internet about “what you have to believe to be a Republican” or conservative. There are also posts about “what you have to believe to be a liberal”. Both rely on stereotyping, especially the blogs about liberals. The fact that someone would conflate being a Democrat with necessarily being liberal is one common fallacy. The other is calling Obama a liberal.
When I say “anti-choice”, I am referring to people that want to take the decision of whether to carry a pregnancy to term from the woman. I am not referring to people that are “anti-abortion’, for no one is “pro-abortion”. I am anti-abortion in that I would like them to be rare, but I am pro-abortion because at times, abortion is the best option. That is why I say I am pro-choice.
What you have to believe to be anti-choice
1. Women have little or no capacity to decide what to do with their own bodies and they need help.
2. Choosing to have an abortion is a decision that women callously make without delving into the ramifications of their choices. Thus, they need counseling.
3. Women get abortions “on demand”. First off, no one demands an abortion; they have procedure out of necessity. Secondly, no one just gives abortions on a walk in basis like order at a fast food restaurant.
4. Women would be better off if they kept their pregnancy. In 2004, 73% of the women in the study by Finer, et al said they choose an abortion because they couldn’t afford a child at the time. Having a child you cannot take care off financially doesn’t make your life better.
5. Women use abortion as birth control. Fact is, women have an abortion when birth control fails (58%). http://www.msmagazine.com/aug01/pas.html It is misleading to say that women use abortion as anything but and emergency measure.
6. Adoption is an option. Yea, if you can afford to carry a baby to term and disrupt your life. Sure, if you don’t have health issues carrying the baby to term. Sure, if you are having a white baby, because those are in high demand. Don’t get me wrong, I fully support a woman bringing a pregnancy to term if that is her choice and then putting the baby up for adoption. However, it is about her choice, not my or your feelings.
7. Abortion is America’s Holocaust. Comparing anything to the holocaust is ridiculous. Beside, you are equating the murder of millions of human lives with fertilized eggs.
8. Women who consent to sex are giving up their right to control what happens to them if they get pregnant. This ignores the accidental pregnancies when birth control is used.
9. You must believe in the fabricated diagnosis of “post abortion stress syndrome” given women who have terminated pregnancies by anti-choice activists. http://www.msmagazine.com/aug01/pas.html There is no such diagnostic in the DHM-IV. Presenting a couple of women who regret their decision to terminate their pregnancy does not prove such a syndrome exists. Having an abortion is stressful, but most women interviewed are relieved by their decision.
10. You must believe that a potential life, a fetus, is more important that a woman’s life. Anyone, like Christine O’Donnell among others, that believes it’s okay if a woman dies during pregnancy to save a fetus is not “pro-life”.
11. You must believe that rape and incest are no big thing and it cannot be used as an excuse to terminate a pregnancy.
12. You must believe that life begins at conception. This is very misleading. In fact, life begins before conception. With this logic, every egg not fertilized in a woman is a murder and all masturbation is murder. In addition, even if a man doesn’t masturbate, he loses sperm through his urine. Are we going to charge him with impraved indifference murder?
12. A fertilized egg is a human. If you believe the spirit enters at conception, then you believe a zygote is a human. There is very little human about it. Your dog or cat is more human.
13. You must believe that you know what is best for a pregnant woman.
14. You must believe in your own moral righteousness and infallibility.
There are laws against late term (after 22-25 weeks) abortions, and in most cases, I agree with these laws. There are, however, exceptions for healthy life that one must consider in all cases of pregnancy.
Most people in America want abortion available for health reasons. Some people want to ban abortion for unwanted pregnancies. The ABC polls shows that 57% of people think abortion should be legal in all cases. (link) If more people knew the facts and effects of an abortion ban, fewer people would want to control women’s bodies. It’s up to you to educate people on the margins. The fundamentalist and myopic religious right is a hopeless cause. They are too self-righteous to let facts change their opinions.
Study on why women choose abortion
A summary of the study here: http://www.religioustolerance.org/abo_why.htm
Go to the “Words of Choice” pages on how to counter the anti-choice rhetoric.
Abortion facts—reasons, demographics