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I've been having some spiritual/ethical issues lately...

I am pro-life. It's hard to be pro-life these days because it is SO un-PC and as a woman, don't I want the women's movement to succeed? Don't I want control over my reproductive rights? I mean - that's MY uterus we're talking about and who are a bunch of old white men to say if I want to scrap out the insides that's against the law?

Except - I don't see it as that. I do believe that's a life growing inside a woman. The moment the sperm and egg connect there is an amazing amount of activity going on. Cells divide, things start to form, a life is created and it's a life dependent on the mother.

Okay, they say, it may be dependent, but it doesn't think. It doesn't breathe, it's just another part of your body. It doesn't have a soul yet. It can't operate outside the body, it can't do anything.

But that's not the point. THe point is that it IS alive. To kill that, to terminate it, that's murder. Murder for reasons such as "I can't have this baby now, it would screw up everything." "I can't have this baby because I don't want to be a mother." "It was one drunken night." "The condom broke." "Why didn't my bc work?"

But there are other reasons too, sadder reasons. "I was raped." "I will die if I have this baby." "I can't afford any of the medical costs or the costs of raising a child."

I am in no ways a fan of abortion. Granted - if I were to find myself pregnant at this point in my life, it would seriously screw things over for me, but that doesn't mean I have the right to destroy a life because it's inconvienent.

What I'm not a big fan of is that as a woman, it seems that I'm supposed to be Pro-Choice, and if I'm not it's obviously because I've been brainwashed by the virgin pervy priests of The Catholic Church who want to put women in their place where they belong (LIES!).

I'm sorry - but could my battle cry of freedom NOT be "Let me have the rights to murder"? PLEASE? Could I fight my battle for equality, better pay, something positive and worth wile other than something distructive?

Where I stand is that while I am opposed to abortion, I understand that we cannot simply make it illegal. The moment we do that there will be so many back alley abortions set up which put not just the unborn child into danger, but also the mother. Two lives instead of one. That's defeating the purpose.

Instead - how about we make it so that abortion is not a viable excuse. Money for women who need it for the hospital costs, better information about the adoption process, a change of society so that unwed mothers are not thought of as daughters of sin and satan that are covered with hideous warts and become social outcasts. It's just an idea.

I guess what I've been realising is the same thing I understand about the gay marriage issue. To many, abortion is a religious issue - it's what their church tells them. For me, it's a moral issue, it's what I believe. But I understand that people don't believe the same that I do. That to them it's not a life inside a woman. It's just a thing and nothing more. That's why this is a hard issue to deal with. I can't say one thing about marriage and then another about abortion that when you come down to it, is really the same issue all over again.

I guess that what I really wish, what I truly truly want, is that I don't have to feel like I'm doing sever damage to the women's movement because I don't think campainging for reproductive rights (and really - when you have another life inside you, it's not just your rights anymore) is a worthy cause. It's a bunch of women saying "I want to be able to commit legalized murder and call it my inborn female right! DON'T HOLD ME BACK!"

Can we please pick something else to rally around that doesn't make us look like psychos? Please?

Of course - a good argument could be made for personal responsibility - something that everybody knows how much I love. Sure, give us our reproductive rights and trust that we make the right decision with it. Trust that we as women can decide what's right for our bodies.

But common women, while this is stagnating because nobody can give an inch, can we do something else with our time? Or do we have to continue to fight with each other about who's more concerned with women's rights? The Pro-Choicer or the Pro-Lifer?
Being pro-choice does not mean being pro-abortion. It's about realizing that your choices, your beliefs, your morals, etc. are not the same as everyone else's and that no individual or government has the right to force their agenda on every woman in this country.
and that's what I'm realising - the same thing I say about gay marriages holds true to abortion. But I would stil like it not to be the rounding force of the women's movement. And I'm tired of being considered by some to be a step back.

To me, pro choice is a step back, and I wish we had something else. I understand the history of abortion and the role it plays in the women's movement, but I also think that we could find other ways to go about it all. It's become a toll of politicians to gain votes, and not for women to advance.

As I said - it ultimately comes down to personal responsibility, which is a scary though when the responsibilty involves the termination of a life.
Here's my only concern, what can we do for the mother that was raped and now has to go through at the very least 9 months of carrying a rapist's child and the emotional and mental effects that will cause?

Also hi, I read your journal on kaela's friends page.
and what do we do for the mother who's life is in danger because her body can't hold the child either?

It's a hard situation to be in - I'm NOT saying that all abortions are ways out. And as much as that woman didn't ask to be raped, the child inside didn't asked to be killed.

There are so many different ways to look at it, and either way has its flaws and merits, hence my dilemma.
I consider myself pro-choice, although I know that if I were in that position, I would not choose abortion. However, I make sure that I'm not going to be put in that position, by taking the pill every day when I'm supposed to.

What really gets me about most "pro-lifers" is that they are opposed to comprehensive sex education, the proper use of birth control, and the use of the morning after pill. If the pro-lifers would work together with the pro-choicers on educating men and women (and kids in school) on their birth control options and how to use them, and promoted the morning after pill, I am sure we could help greatly reduce the number of abortions performed in this country.

Unfortunately, the real problem is that most people who consider themselves "pro-life" not only do not want people aborting fetuses and committing what they see as murder, they just plain don't want people having sex. So they promote all that abstinence only junk that DOESN'T WORK, instead of working to solve the problem as a public health issues as opposed to a moral one.
IT's funny - it seems our fall back is "the problem with most pro-lifers" or "The problem with most pro-choicers," and I admit I do this as well.

But it seems that there is no middle ground between the two. There are fundamentalists and radicals in both camps that make people who want a happy medium feel uncomfortable wherever they land.

Those who teach abstinence are conservitive catholics who scare the piss out of me (I was in a conservative catholic lj community for a while until I just got sick of it all). Those who teach that the fetus is not a real life are more in the extremist views. Both sides are dangerous to fall into, both sterotypes hurt wich ever movement.

I totally agree with you on sex-ed. I am a BIG fan of education. Teach familys and kids about sex and protection. IF you think about it, women have so many rights now to their reproductive system than we ever have had before. Margaret Sanger used to smuggle in diaphrams and condoms because they were illegal. Think of how far we've come. If we can make sex education into something that would really EDUCATE kids, that would be a greater step, I feel, and also something more productive.
I just realized that I made some generalizations about "pro-lifers" when you identified above as pro-life. I hope I did not offend. I only meant to say that about the extreme, religious right, who protest every day at the abortion clinic, shoving pamphlets of dead babies in teen girl's faces without DOING something about the problem.

I didn't mean it about the people who do not believe in abortion, like yourself.
no offence taken, and I think we are on the same wave length about sterotypes :)
To sum it up, I completey agree with you. It's a rarity to find women who actually believe a baby has a right to live...or that there is a growing life, not just some disposable fetus...
Rape sucks but death is worse...
In the case of the mother having severe complications then she whould do what she feels but besides that I think all babies have the right to live and there are other ways to express our equal rights.

*huggles to meg!*

*high fives* Thanks for the support. It's a hard place to be these days.
Damn, and here I was thinking the post was going to be about Mommie Dearest...
I know, I totally gacked that line, didn't I?

I'm so bad, luring people into reading my rants by convincing them it's going to be about classic cult movies ;) Naughty Meg! Naughty Meg!
I'm really not sure where I stand on the issue of abortion...sometimes I lean more pro-life, sometimes I lean more pro-choice. You made a very good point in that if abortions were made illegal, they'd still be happening. That's a really scary thought, but it would be the way things go. Lack of a professional, sterile environment to perform abortions = no good. A rather weak (as far as the morality level goes) correlation would be the p2p scene. Sure, downloading commecial (as in non-free) mp3's is illegal. Does that stop people from doing so? Hell no. The complete ignorance of those pushing to have abortions made illegal is shocking. Good comments have been posted about incentives for women to not choose abortion...I think the root of the problem does lie in personal responsibility. In any event, though, I'm a guy so I can talk all I want about what I'd do, but in the end the choice wouldn't be mine to make, and I'm totally cool with that. I handle stress poorly :-P
Everything ultimately ends in personal responsibility. The thing is, nobody wants to accept the resposibility. We try to push as much off our selves as we possibly can in hopes that someone else can do it for us, and leave us free from making the hard desicions in life.

To accept responsibility means to accept the results of your actions, whether good or bad, and that's a very scary though.

God do I love personal responsibility! Goes hand in hand with free will :)
This will sound very ignorant (I'm not actually thinking before I open my mind to you) but the world is over-populated. Kill, kill and kill some more.
and here i thought i was the only one who thought this way. i think that people are using abortion as birth control. just being irresponsible when it comes to haveing sex and then not living up to the repercussions isn't right. of course the guy should have to deal with it to. "it takes two to tango". but rape and incest are the acceptions to this i think... i donno. this is just my own veiw.
i think that people are using abortion as birth control.

Abortion is birth control. It controls birth.

just being irresponsible when it comes to haveing sex and then not living up to the repercussions isn't right.

I work at an abortion clinic, and do you know how many women I've seen who decided to "just be irresponsible" and thought "oh, I can get an abortion later"? See if you can guess. I've worked there for six months and I've kept track.
(and really - when you have another life inside you, it's not just your rights anymore) is a worthy cause. It's a bunch of women saying "I want to be able to commit legalized murder and call it my inborn female right! DON'T HOLD ME BACK!"

If you're going into semantics, then let me correct you - abortion is not "legalized murder." Murder is the unlawful killing of a person. A fetus is not a person. And abortion is legal. So your statement makes no sense.

On top of that, a fetus does not have any rights in the U.S. A woman, a born person, does. If she decides to give a fetus rights (like the right to hang out in her womb until it's born), then good for her - but it doesn't have the legal right to be there.

It's a good point, though, that this is such a useless battle. Think of all the time and money spent on both sides, fighting this ridiculousness...imagine how much prevention could be done with those resources. If you're interested, check out abortabortion - a community for both sides to come together to reduce abortions through prevention and help.
I'm feeling a little attacked here for something that really was just a frustrated rant. Ah well, the joys of public forums I guess. Should have known this topic would get a lot of people's panties in a bundle.

Personally, I feel that a fetus is a life. You do not. This is where my legalized murder comes in. I do believe that it is murder - you and many others feel that it is not. I believe that life begins the moment the sperm and egg connect - you believe life begins when the baby is born (that is when the baby becomes a person, has rights, when the baby is not dependant on the mother's body). These are my beliefs, those are yours.

If you go and re-read my post you will come across the fact that I understand that I cannot thrust this view on anybody, which is why I am having this dilemma. Apparently nobody read that part. The only parts they read where the ones where I was expressing my angst towards Pro-Choicers who attack me for my beliefs. Much in the same way you have attacked almost every single pro-lifer in this thread. I'm sure you meant well, I'm sure it boils your blood when you see some of these statements, but when you immedietly attack, when you demand that you are right, it produces a knee jerk reaction and results in people to putting up a defense. In the end, nothing is solved, people are just as locked up as always.

You kinda went on a rampage through my journal today. I'm sure it was all in the name of educating us, the poor misguided pro-lifers who don't understand anything about abortion or what a fetus really is - but we do have our own belief. To me, it felt like you were going through, going "you're wrong, you're wrong, you're worng, god you people are dumb!" when perhaps you just wanted to help dispell some common myths. Perhpas you could work on your delivery? If you noticed - I signed up for abortabortion yesterday afternoon. I understand that it's up to me to do something about it.

The whole post, really, TRULY, was my anger that the two subjects are so closely intertwined. I would really like it if abortion wasn't on the top of the women's rights list as much as it seems to be. The things you posted here today aren't going to make me Pro-Choice. My post wasn't supposed to make anybody Pro-Life. I am Pro-Life, I will BE Pro-Life while I find a way to make is so abortion is not a vialbe answer for most of the situations we have today. No - I'm not going to blow up clinics, and I don't like people who do. And no - I don't want abortion to become illegal. But I will do what is in my power to save unborn child through education and other means.
Meg, thank you for that well-articulated, even-tempered post on this issue. You said it all: personal repsonsibility, refocusing the women's movement on issues more central to the cause, etc. Good job!