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Women’s Thursday: One Voice in the Abortion Debate

21 Feb

Women’s Thursday: One Voice in the Abortion Debate

I disagree with this blogger on many different levels  She gives me the opportunity to address them.

First of all, most people who are against abortion are not also against contraceptives.  The people who are against both are usually traditional Catholics.  They are only a small percentage of Catholics, let alone of the pro-life movement!

Secondly, one bit of data usually not included in comparisons of countries where abortion is legal and those where it is illegal is the status of doctors conducting abortions in both places.  They are usually the same bunch, with one bringing women in the front doors of their clinics and the other bringing them in the back doors of their clinics.   That was also the difference that occurred in the U.S. in  January of 1973, when abortion became legal.  A totally new group of doctors did not get trained in the procedure from one day to the next.  The ones who were already providing it just became legal.

That is key because when a country makes abortion legal, the blood of those unborn babies accrues on that nation’s conscience.  When abortion is illegal, individual doctors and mothers incur the guilt for a baby’s death.  That may seem a fine point now, but that only proves how far downward our thinking has spiraled since 1973.  I don’t want anybody’s blood guilt spread over our entire nation.  If someone chooses to murder a child in the womb, let those people bear their own guilt.

So I do not concur when the post says that countries that make abortion illegal punish women who want abortions by making them seek them illegally.  In light of responsibility for blood guilt, I can’t buy that line.  For when abortion is legal, I am punished by living in a society where we collectively bear the blood guilt of every woman who aborts and every doctor who provides an abortion.  Why should I be punished with that?  Given the choice between “punishing” a woman by making her find an illegal abortion and punishing our entire society with blood guilt, I choose the former.

Thirdly, the post advances the shaky argument that a woman’s body naturally expels more fertilized eggs than are expelled via birth control; this event is referred to as a natural abortion.  Well, so what?  If God causes a fertilized egg to pass out of a woman’s body, then that is God’s decision.  I am not worried about those cases.  My objective is not to maximize the number of fertilized eggs coming to the birth process, but to suggest that people don’t have the right to play God and to cause the death of a fertilized egg, whether by a birth control method that works after fertilization or by abortion.

Fourthly, however, I do agree that those who are prolife must be consistently so and must advocate for ways in which poor women can be helped to raise the children they bear.  Those ways do not necessarily have to be funded by the government, however.

And fifthly, one final word about the post is that statistics should often be questioned.  The Western European abortion rate is said to be 12 per 1000 women, while the Eastern European abortion rate is 43 per 1000 women.  Yet we know that in the U.S., a western nation, we abort between 20% and 25% of all pregnancies.  If that were consistent with Western Europe, then we would be talking about an abortion rate in Eastern Europe that is almost 100%.  I believe the discrepancy exists because all women are included in the statistic, not just all women who get pregnant in a given year.  That would be a more meaningful statistic.

There is much to be said on the abortion issue; my initial two posts have merely scratched the surface.  But when we say it, we need to use meaningful words and concepts.

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