Talk about a picture being worth a thousand words . . . (Found on Facebook)
Exercising my Right to Freedom of Speech . . .
MY TAKE ON ROE V. WADE
On the night of the Supreme’s Court’s decision to reverse on Roe v. Wade, my son called me from Connecticut, asking me not only to express my views as someone who remembered the days before Roe v. Wade but to write them down. A task almost too big for even an author to contemplate. Yes, I was there when the original battle was fought, and I find the blind intransigence that could reverse such a monumental freedom appalling. But surely, at this point in my life, I could plead “age” and let others take up the cudgel.
Except, of course, I can’t.
This is such a polarizing issue that it seems unlikely I will change a single mind, but I find I cannot avoid saying what, from the point of view of someone who has lived a lot of years, needs to be said.
First of all, the approach to this problem I would prefer:
1. I am a middle-of-the-roader. My preference would be birth control information readily available to every female of child-bearing age, AND universal education in how to use every manner of contraceptive, as well as the necessity of doing do.
Except—sigh—we all know, through carelessness, an excess of passion, ignorance, or “I just don’t give a damn,” not everyone is going to use contraceptives. Therefore . . .
2. Beginning in late middle school, every female should receive instruction, not only on contraceptives but on the early signs of pregnancy (and yes, ignorance abounds!) This instruction should be repeated in high school classes.
3. Beginning in late middle school, every male should be taught the necessity of using contraceptives—information from professionals, NOT acquired through word-of-mouth or writing on public bathroom walls! This instruction should continue through high school.
4. Beginning in late middle school, all young males and females should receive instruction in the consequences of unprotected sex: loss of schooling, loss of potential career, the likely plunge into poverty, the struggle of raising a child alone, the threat of overpopulation, etc.
Note: this instruction might not protect against the horror of rape and incest, but hopefully it would help a majority of young people understand the personal significance of bringing an unwanted child into the world.
I am convinced the universal practice of Numbers 1-4 above would go a long way toward reducing the necessity for abortion. None of these things can happen, however, as long as the loud-mouthed vocal MINORITY is allowed to tell the MAJORITY of Americans what to do.
As for Abortions . . .
Let’s face it, sex is here to stay. And there are always those who, for one reason or another, will need to terminate an unwanted pregnancy. Most particularly, in cases of rape and incest. But—again from my personal point of view—abortion should be confined to the first few months of pregnancy. (Another reason for educating all females on the early symptoms of pregnancy and for making abortions easily available.) Qualification: There are, of course, instances when late-termination is necessary for medical reasons.
And now—from someone old enough to remember life before Roe v. Wade . . .
I was there when it all started, a young woman in New Haven, CT, who could only get birth-control information “under the counter” from my gynecologist. Yes, that’s right, birth control information was forbidden, let alone abortion! And I was a young mother when the battle that would lead to Roe v. Wade began right there in New Haven. I watched the whole process unfold, a female's right to contraception, a female's right to abortion. Just to emphasize that we’re talking universal Women’s Rights here, I was born into the era when a woman could not even get a credit card in her own name, so naturally, I was all in favor of those fighting for a woman’s right to decide what was best for her own body.
In the matter of rape, let me tell you what it was like before Roe v. Wade.
I remember when abortions were available only through “abortion mills”—“back rooms” of horror, staffed by amateurs, in which many mothers died as well as babies. And other mothers were so badly damaged in the process that they were barren for life. Or, even worse, the Do-It-Yourself “coathanger” abortions—you can imagine how those turned out! Yes, this was what life was like before Roe vs. Wade.
Is this really the world we want to go back to?
Of course not! A vast majority of Americans understand this, yet somehow we’ve allowed ourselves to be manipulated by a MINORITY.
1. No Congress, Legislature, Parliament, Duma, etc., can legislate sex. (Can you imagine those predominantly male institutions so much as considering such a thing?
2. Universal Contraception—both availability and education on how to use—is the most sensible solution to the problem of abortion. (We all know pregnancies will happen, but hopefully they would be far fewer.)
3. Abortion in the first four months (preferably three) of pregnancy should be allowed in cases of
c. Husband rape
d. Underage mother
h. Don’t give a damn (this, usually a male viewpoint: “As long as I get off . . .”
i. Any other reason that prevents an unwanted child from being born into poverty, neglect, starvation, violence, and/or degradation
j. Any reason I haven’t thought of
Looking at the problem from a slightly different viewpoint . . .
1. A woman must have the right to govern her own body.
2. A woman must be spared the horror of carrying a child of rape or incest.
3. A woman’s health, both mental and physical, should be of greater importance than the life of an embryo.
4. A woman should not be forced to add to the world’s population, which is already growing exponentially. (This, like global warming, is a problem all too many fail to see.)
1. Contraceptive measures readily available and existing in an atmosphere that encourages the use of them.
2. Judicious use of abortion as early in term as possible*
*Fifteen weeks, as proposed by some states, is not realistic, because this does not give women enough time to a) recognize they are pregnant; b) make arrangements for an abortion.
3. A more realistic attitude by both the Evangelical and Roman Catholic churches.
And there it is, the view of someone who has seen life before Roe v. Wade. At my age, words are my only weapon. I can only ask that those younger and stronger than I am shoulder the fight. Except—ah, yes—there’s that special place called the BALLOT BOX. Even ancients like me can express ourselves by voting out the rabid Pro-lifers who see only pretty pink babies who will grow up to be shining examples of humanity and not the poor struggling mites who will born into an endless cycle of poverty, denigration, violence, and resentment.
So, Pro-Choicers, stand up and be counted. If you are unable to join rallies or donate funds, you can still go to the ballot box and VOTE THE BUMS OUT!*
*Yes, I know we’re stuck with the Supreme Idiots (sigh), but with the right people in federal and state government, we can find a way around those who have turned their backs on both Justice and the Constitution.
The era of “Keep ‘em barefoot & pregnant” is gone, gone, gone.
WE ARE FEMALE. HEAR US ROAR!
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