[promoted by Liz]
In “Single-Issue Voter”, Roberto Rivera describes growing up in a Democratic Catholic blue-collar household. He’s progressive on all the issues but, he’s “strongly pro-life” and finds himself politically aligned with people who “if, by some (please God!) miracle, abortion disappeared tomorrow, many of them would probably vote in much the same way they do now”.
Rivera wouldn’t. He’d return to being a progressive, if “abortion disappeared”.
Roberto doesn’t know how abortion disappears. Remarkably, his article makes no mention of “woman” or “pregnancy”. Abortion is something that “happens” to a disembodied fetus.
Disembodied 12-week fetus - National Library of Medicine
The illustration was produced with your tax dollars. Isn’t he cute? His name is Adam. God created Adam from dust without the help of a woman. The Adam above looks like he’s going to wake up and practice Mozart piano sonatas before he goes back to being a fetus.
That’s the image that Rivera wants you to maintain as he alludes to – if not women – to original sin.
A society that enshrines (the word fits particularly well in this context) the right to use private lethal violence against its weakest and most vulnerable members isn’t only unjust in this regard, it’s likely to be unjust pretty much across the board. The right to an abortion is based on a jurisprudence and an underlying worldview that denies the existence of a common good and holds personal autonomy and self-fulfillment as the highest goods.
Mark Earley wrote a similar piece, “No Life, No Justice” for Prison Fellowship Ministries that referenced Rivera’s article. Earley does mention women, and Planned Parenthood, of course.
Since the passage of Roe vs. Wade in 1973, more than 48 million unborn children have perished—and only 7 percent of the women who had those abortions cited medical concerns, rape, or incest as their reasons. And those who promote abortions—they are flexing their muscle as never before. In Fiscal Year 2006-2007, Planned Parenthood…
According to Earley and Rivera, 93% of the time, women are choosing “personal autonomy and self-fulfillment” over their duty to dear Adam.
The fetus is fertile ground for conspiracy. Rand Paul ratchet’s up the rhetoric in a very Delgaudioesque fundraising letter (emphasis mine).
Dear Concerned American,
It’s a horrifying modern day genocide happening in our own backyards.
Last year alone, Planned Parenthood was responsible for ending the lives of over 320,000 innocent babies….
I believe there is something deeply wrong with an organization that kills babies, and even more so when they are funded through the taxpayer dollars….
Planned Parenthood’s progaganda calls the pro-life movement a war on women.
And believe me, they have their supporters riled up like never before.
Daily emails from Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and Emily’s List are being sent smearing pro-life Americans like you and me as villains.
Maybe the fetus should should be sitting on a slippery slope. Too bad there is no slope. Roberto is no liberal. If he was operating in the reality-based world he’d put down his moral smugness and ask, “what’s the root cause of abortion, unwanted pregnancy, maybe”? Wouldn’t Rivera sound more rational if he said “if, by some (please God!) miracle, unwanted pregnancy disappeared tomorrow“? But then he wouldn’t have a straw enemy. He wouldn’t be able to blame women for using “private violence“. He would have to take responsibility as a man. He’d be forced to ask if that 7% (3.5 million) pregnancies terminated for reasons of medical concern, rape or incest “disappeared”, if that would require some degree of violence against societies weak and vulnerable. He’d have to acknowledge that women actually embody those fetuses and that he’s advocating a Handmaid’s Tale world.
Suzanne Moore wrote personal piece in the Guardian, “It’s the same old game. Get your rosaries off my ovaries, as we used to say“. When she was 11, Moore and her mum were booted from a tupperware party. When talk turned to ‘getting “rid” of things’, Moore’s mum blurted
Christ, you really don’t know what you are talking about. If it wasn’t for abortion I’d have a football team by now.”
Moore’s was writing about British “independent counseling” legislation. It failed. The British controversy is like the new clinic rules that are pushing Virginia to the forefront of the abortion debate reported in the Loudoun Times Mirror. Both regulations intend to make it harder to obtain abortion services. Moore’s analysis is relevant to Virginia.
We are repeatedly told this is an “emotive” issue. The new vocabulary of the anti-abortion lobby is full of vaguely feminist platitudes – not feminist enough to counsel the men who walk away from pregnancies but still. Underneath, we are fallen women, damaged goods and so terribly stupid that we can be persuaded to have a quick abortion by wicked charities. When we could be what? Wombs to provide babies for “proper couples” or go it alone as the root of all evil: single mothers?
This is nauseating. A vote of conscience? If MPs had one they would say it is not the business of the legislature to control women’s reproduction. They would stop telling us what is “emotive” and ask what actually is. I didn’t want counselling in order to have an abortion. I certainly did after a miscarriage – again an awfully common experience – but none was offered. No, instead let’s bring on an army of “independent” zealots who can tell us that abortion leads to cancer, mental health issues and infertility, and sod the evidence that having a baby is more risky than having an abortion. Anyone who talks about how easy it is and how the reality is glossed over is ignorant. You have a scan. You know and see what you are doing. It’s not a walk in the park but it is a huge relief. The emotive part is the enforced waiting.
Now the tactics are to further that wait. This is nothing short of cruelty dressed up in the language of concern.
Chris Freund of the Virginia Family Foundation explains the rationale for the regulations. “The threat that a health department inspector could visit the clinics at any time also will ensure that clinics operate safely”. When discussing medical procedures, it’s no longer polite to refer to “private lethal violence”. “Safety” is a much better talking point.
Moore knows where Freund is coming from.
All fundamentalisms seek to control female sexuality. It’s the same old game. Get your rosaries off my ovaries, as we used to say. You trust me with a child but not with a choice? If MPs want to help women then they can make access to abortion and contraception more efficient. Who has the authority over my body – some geezer in the House of Commons? Or me and my doctor? Like my mother, I feel no shame and I refute this language of “care”. You want a definition of a nanny state? How about one that thinks it’s OK to poke around in your uterus?