GIVE ME BACK MY WOMB
Recently, US Presidential candidate Rick Santorum confirmed his commitment to stupidity when he declared that women should view a pregnancy that resulted from rape as a “gift from God” and carry it accordingly.
Socially conservative US presidential candidate Rick Santorum.
“I believe and I think that the right approach is to accept this horribly created, in the sense of rape, but nevertheless, in a very broken way, a gift of human life, and accept what God is giving to you.”
Hey y’all. Yours is not to judge. God moves in mysterious ways. Why not see it as a silver lining? It’s the right approach.
Unfortunately, views like Santorum’s aren’t all that uncommon.
Last month, a networking group was formed with aims to link select members of the ALP, including Environment Minister Tony Burke and Tasmanian Senator Helen Polley.
The group is linked to the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees Association, one of Australia’s most powerful and notoriously conservative unions and led by the vigorously anti-choice Joe de Bruyn. It’s title – Labor for Life – should leave no one guessing as to its primary objective.
The battleground on abortion has never been truly abandoned.
Every so often, the issue rears its divisive, morally contentious head and sends everyone tearing away to their activity bench to construct crudely painted placards featuring slogans like, ‘MY BODY MY CHOICE’, ‘MY MUMMY SAYS MURDER IS WRONG’ and ‘WHAT IF MARY HAD ABORTED JESUS?’.
Leaving aside the ineptitude of hypothetical moral quandaries, I think we can safely say that this is one issue that will never find its way out of the wilderness it’s been trapped in ever since people decided that women’s bodies belong to everyone but themselves, ie the dawn of time.
Luckily, there aren’t too many sides to choose from.
The legalisation of abortion procedures in the latter half of the 20th century led to a convenient political dichotomy in which defiant people could state their position. On the one side, there were those who believed in a woman’s right to self-determination, reproductive autonomy and the ability to decide for herself when or even if she wanted to become a parent.
We called those people ‘pro-choice’.
On the other side were those who had a peculiar understanding of biology, preferring to imagine the womb less as an environment in which a tiny embryonic fetus might grow into personhood, and more like one of those tents that all the wizards have in Harry Potter; deceptively small on the outside but big enough to house bunk beds, a rudimentary kitchen and a ping pong table behind the entrance flaps.
Within this magical sanctuary, they liked to imagine a fetus skipping through the fallopian tubes and playing pat-a-cake with the uterine wall. From the cosy hearth of its amniotic sleeping bag, it would dream of one day having the kind of job that requires gentle hands and a loving heart – a vet perhaps, or Georgie Parker.
It was held as incontrovertible fact that a fetus was more important than the woman carrying it, and that anyone who thought otherwise should be burned at the stake.
We called these people ‘pro-life’.
And this is where we went wrong.
Allow me to explain. I am a feminist. I have also had two abortions of which I am neither proud nor ashamed. I have yet to feel the enormous sense of guilt and depression that the anti-choice camp assures me is my destiny, and I have never for a moment regretted my decision.
|Page 1 of 2||next >>|