I’m disappointed with how i see the left framing the overturning of Roe. The issue is not as clear cut to me as voting rights, or racism or freedom of speech. Is it so hard to understand someone who sees that embryo’s potential? Are they hateful, selfish, uncaring and mean, for caring about the baby?
I know, it’s just potential. There is potential in every egg and sperm. They can’t all be babies. Maybe it was never meant to be. Maybe it was never going to be. But it is not unreasonable, to think this is no longer just spilled seed, no longer just an egg that passed in the night.
I consider myself pro choice and anti-abortion. Is anyone actually pro-abortion? There is an opportunity here to cast a broader net to bring in more supporters of choice, regardless of their reasons. If we can acknowledge that the issue isn’t just about whether that baby is real, but about whether anti-abortion laws work, then maybe we can agree that making something illegal doesn’t always make things better. Sometimes it doesnt achieve the result we’re looking for. Sometimes it makes things worse.
Anti-abortion sentiment, doesn’t just reside with the religious right. It can come from anyone who loves kids. But they can understand that there are better ways to lower the rate of abortion, than making it a crime. And we can and should seek broader support for those solutions.
But the religious right support policies that lead to circumstances favoring abortion, and then they expect to be able to reverse all that by creating a law. They seem to forget that before abortion was legal, women still had them, felt forced by circumstance to do so, and sometimes died trying. They don’t want to support effective measures to lower abortions maybe because they’re committed to an absolute that will never come to pass, illegal or not. If anyone thinks they can ever completely eliminate abortion, they are denying reality.
The religious right is against contraception. They are against pre-marital sex. They are against welfare. They are against national healthcare, They are against free education. They are against minimum wages. They are against all of the safety nets that would make it easier for people to choose life, to make life easier in general, to actually promote family, and to top it off, they judge and ostracize women who get pregnant out of wedlock, but not typically the men who put it there, even sometimes in cases of rape. They are against family planning in general, other than abstinence – the failure of which is known, and to think otherwise is another denial of reality.
Put simply, their policies lead to abortion, putting more women into the circumstance in which they must contemplate what has been made into an impossible choice. Should they sacrifice their own dreams, or live a life of second guessing? Because abortion is not, and this is something I wish the left would acknowledge a little more often, without it’s emotional toll on the woman who chooses it.
And to add insult to injury, these same supporters of the political right care little about gun control, little about whether the babies already born have the right to survive elementary school.
The left, if it wants to win on all of these issues and more, needs to cast a wider net, and marginalize the extreme by including in our fight, those reasonable people who don’t like abortion, for obvious reasons. Together, we can support children, families, women. We can minimize abortion by minimizing unwanted pregnancies. Does it need to be pointed out that people don’t typically abort pregnancies they got on purpose? And we can make it easier for those on the fence to choose life by supporting people better.
We can tie all of this into the many liberal values that make life, in general, better and more civilized. Making something you disagree with illegal isnt the answer. It’s often nothing more than symbolic. What has the drug war done other than promote crime, the creation of stronger drugs and overdose deaths?
There are better more effective ways to address these issues. Reasonable people should work together to do so.