Pro-Life Song Misses the Point

I just came upon the lyrics to a pro-life song. It’s called “Mommy Don’t.”

“I could lie in your arms
on a snow bound afternoon
you’d sing songs to me and God
and make up pretty little tunes
I’d wipe away all your tears
and make you laugh at your lost career
Oh, Mommy, Mommy don’t”

Wow, what honesty! So, woman who is unintentionally pregnant, just ditch your career and have your baby! It’ll be worth it, we promise! 

When a woman has an unintended pregnancy, she doesn’t face it in a vacuum. She has to think about not just whether she wants to bring a child into the world but also about what kind of maternity leave her employer offers, how much daycare costs, etc. Without programs providing social and emotional support, plenty of women can’t simply dump their careers and quit their jobs.

Someone who is truly “pro-life” should support things like paid maternity leave and subsidized daycare, without which many women facing an unintended pregnancy simply can’t see it through. But no. Instead, the solution this song offers is that women should just quit their jobs and stay home. Because, you know, that’s where they should be anyway. But it’ll be worth it! Have you ever heard a baby coo?

But of course even if there were all the necessary programs, I would still have a huge problem with the idea of dictating women’s lievs by banning abortion. Even if a woman can afford to dump her career or quit her job, she may very well not want to. Even if a woman can afford another child, that doesn’t mean she wants to raise that child or should be forced to. This is why we use the label “pro-choice.”

“And you’ll never know the sorrow
that will call from an empty place
or wonder at the kid next door
cause I would have been that age
and the haunted hall won’t whisper
cause I’ll be running there to kiss ya
Oh, Mommy, Mommy don’t”

Funny story. I often wonder about the child I didn’t have. My two children will be as far apart as I was from child number three growing up. In other words, in the time I’ve had two kids my mom had three. And that child I could have had, between these two, I wonder about that child sometimes. Would it have been a boy or a girl? What would he or she have looked like? And on and on. And you know what? This is a child I never conceived. It’s a child I chose not to conceive.

So sure, we often wonder about the possibilities of how we could have done life differently. Instead of getting married I could have joined the peace corps. Instead of going to grad school I could have gotten a job. Instead of having a child right off, I could have waited ten years. What would that have been like?

If I ever were to have an abortion, I think I would view it the same. Continuing that pregnancy to term would be a path not taken just like not conceiving a child between the two I have is a path not taken and getting married instead of spending my twenties single is a path not taken, and on and on.

There isn’t really a point to this post except to point out the obviousness of the “just quit your career and be a mom, it’s better” rhetoric here and to point out that we always, always, have paths not taken.

About Libby Anne

Libby Anne grew up in a large evangelical homeschool family highly involved in the Christian Right. College turned her world upside down, and she is today an atheist, a feminist, and a progressive. She blogs about leaving religion, her experience with the Christian Patriarchy and Quiverfull movements, the detrimental effects of the "purity culture," the contradictions of conservative politics, and the importance of feminism.

  • Sarah

    Actually I bet that most of women who do get abortions are the ones who have part-time or low wage jobs, not careers. I read a study by the Guttmacher Institute that even tho the overall abortion rate is falling, it’s rising for those in the lower income bracket.

    • Conuly

      Not surprising. People often have abortions not because they don’t want a child but because they looked at the numbers and realized that they simply can’t AFFORD a child. Quite contrary to the image of the scared teen or the partying college girl, a woman seeking an abortion is often already a mother, choosing to make the best possible life for her existing children by not adding another burden to strained finances.

      This isn’t a good situation, really. It’s not about choice when some people feel they are pushed into having NO choice. The best way to reduce abortions (and increase freedom of choice in general) is to improve welfare and increase availability of birth control.

    • Carol

      Everyone gets abortions. Everyone from every walk of life. Mistresses of “pro-life” politicians go to special places to get “D & Cs”, ie abortions. 5th avenue in NYC, that’s where the elites go to their gynocologists for the procedure. “Pro life” people jump out of the Planned Parenthood picket line to get theirs, ask any Planned Parenthood doctor. Oh, they do want exceptions, there are 4: “rape and incest, life of the mother and me”.

  • http://cfiottawa.com Eamon Knight

    OK, you’ve just confirmed my decision to write a stiff email to a long-time friend who somewhat took advantage of our hospitality yesterday in order to attend the annual “pro-life”* rally on Parliament Hill. And tossed in a few gratuitous remarks about pro-choicers along the way. Grrrrr.

    * I refuse to use that term without scare quotes anymore.

    • LeftSidePositive

      I find the term “forced-pregnancy” works very well.

      (some people find “forced birth” a suitable variant, but I think that with the focus on cutting off access to birth control these people are actually trying to *start* as many pregnancies as they demand continue, and it also encompasses their total lack of concern for cases in which women have life-endangering situations that the forced-pregnancy folks insist she follow through to her death, even when no birth is possible.)

      • Petticoat Philosopher

        Yeah, except it’s too easy for them to just respond “Nobody FORCES those women to have sex.” Personally, I just can’t have that conversation that often. I have my sanity to look out for.

      • Liberated Liberal

        Ugghhhh… Petticoat Philosopher: You are so right. That’s the response I get every single time I see or use the words “forced pregnancy.” I actually don’t know how to respond at all.

  • Anonymous

    I had an abortion two years ago. I have not once regretted it. Sure, occasionally I’ll wonder what my life would be like now if I hadn’t made that choice. But I’ve never looked at a child and thought wistfully, “My baby would be the same age…” and I’ve never, not even once, felt sorrow or emptiness because of that choice. I’m sure that some women do, but I will bet cash money that it’s a much, much smaller number than the pro-life activists claim.

    • Conuly

      And you know what? They act like choosing adoption is the “better” choice, well, those women often regret that choice.

  • Dianne

    I’ve never had an unwanted pregnancy. But after my daughter was born I thought a lot about what it would be like to have just given birth to a baby you didn’t want. The hormonal changes are still there, you’d still bond with the baby, but you’d still be you: If you didn’t like babies you still wouldn’t like babies. If you hated getting up at night or changing diapers or having a little creature dependent on you you’d still hate those things. If you wanted something else, be it a chance to better your career or time to discover yourself or the ability to have wild orgies every night without worrying about the baby, you’d still want those things. But you’d also want the baby and to know that the baby was safe. You’d never be happy, either in the baby’s presence or out of it.

    A baby doesn’t solve anything. It creates more problems. Babies give you absolute love and absolute selfishness. The baby CANNOT think about your needs. If it is hungry, cold, wet, tired, etc it can only inform you of that by crying. It can’t get its own snack or go to the bathroom or even put itself to sleep. If you’re having trouble in your relationship, you’ll simply now have less time to work things out with your partner because you’ll have to take care of the baby instead of discussing the problems. If you’re uncertain about what you want to do next with your life, your options will be even more limited.

    Babies should be brought into families that want them. That are ready to care for them. They aren’t to blame for their neediness and they should have the right to a parent or parents who can fulfill those needs. Not one (or two) that had a baby only because they were afraid that they might, conceivably, regret not having it later. Better to regret the child you didn’t have than the child you did.

  • http://puddinsilovemylife.blogspot.com/ Tonya Richard

    While I am pro choice, I don’t think having an abortion is an easy thing. I do believe most women will have some emotional trauma to deal with on some level. Personally, I know I probably couldn’t emotionally deal with having an abortion and maybe that is because I did spend most of my life believing the pro life rhetoric. However, even though it may not be as difficult for some women to abort, I do believe it is something that most women couldn’t do and then just go on about their lives like nothing ever happened. Sometimes, I feel the pro choice movement makes abortion out to be no different than having a tooth pulled. Of course, I will admit that becoming pro choice has been the hardest thing for me to deal with since coming out of Christianity and the whole right wing bullshit beliefs. Having given birth to 8 children and suffering 3 miscarriages, I still do think of these fetuses as babies. So, I know my way of thinking about the unborn is probably still somewhat skewed. My mission in life now is to make sure that contraception is available for all so that we can make sure the absolute least amount of abortions need to be performed. While I truly believe that abortion must be legal to protect the rights and lives of women, I still can’t help wishing that we lived in a perfect world where all children were wanted. Can you tell this is a very very difficult issue for me……..

    • Dianne

      I do believe most women will have some emotional trauma to deal with on some level.

      An abortion is certainly not something any woman has for fun. If nothing else, it’s surgery and surgery is always a bit traumatic. (Heck, I found wisdom tooth removal traumatic on some level.) OTOH, most studies of women’s reactions to abortion have found that the primary emotion after an abortion is relief. Women who have been raised in a strongly pr0-life milieu like yourself or who have a lot of pro-life pressure around them are more prone to feelings of guilt, but that seems more likely about the pressure being put on them by their friends and relatives than about the procedure itself.

      Also by working to improve access to birth control you’re preventing more abortions than every Operation Rescue terrorist out there. Keep up the good work!

    • MadGastronomer

      I don’t think having an abortion is an easy thing. I do believe most women will have some emotional trauma to deal with on some level.

      I am so sick of this condescending, ignorant nonsense. Reading any sort of study, or many of the personal stories out there will tell you that this simply isn’t true. Presuming to know better than other people how they feel and what their lives are like is just dreadful. Stop it.

      I, as many other women, found the pregnancy to be traumatic and the abortion to be a relief.

      I had a friend who, years ago when I told her my abortion story, said as you do that she thought it would be a terrible thing to go through and she couldn’t handle it. This past winter she had an unplanned pregnancy, and chose to have an abortion because her family is already struggling with two children, one of whom is developmentally disabled. She found, as I did, that abortion is a great relief. It is an end to a traumatic thing, not a traumatic thing itself, for so many of us.

      Don’t talk about what you don’t know about. Actually listen to the women who have been through this, instead of telling us what we feel.

      • T

        Try not to be quite so tough…at least Tonya is trying. I am in the same boat that she is rocking around in, having come from half a lifetime of christian thinking. It’s tough to overcome that mindset that it’s a life being destroyed. But we’re on the way. :)
        It’s good for me reading your comments and seeing that abortion isn’t the all-encompassing trauma christianity/pro-life crazies make it out to be. That’s been step one for me. Step two will be wrapping my mind fully around the fact that life does not begin at conception. Even with all the biology classes I’ve taken, that idea remains. I don’t like it, but there it is. So thank you for helping us along in our baby steps to reality. We will get there…someday. And kudos to Tonya for her work to help forward birth control access, etc.

      • MadGastronomer

        Please don’t tell me not to be hard on the people who, day after day, presume to speak for me, to condescend to me, to tell me how I feel or how I should feel about my life and my decisions. Because it’s not just Tonya or you, it’s thousands of people around the country, millions around the world. I encounter this regularly. It is really freaking insulting. Every time I get into a big conversation about abortion — and I do it quite a bit — somebody repeats this crap. Somebody insults me again. And that’s completely separate from the self-righteous asshats who call me a murderer. I have every right to be angry when I am insulted and condescended to, and every right to express that anger. If someone hurts me, it hurts whether or not they meant to, whether or not they knew that would hurt. Reading this, again and again, is hard on me.

        I get that people don’t know better, but it is so easy to learn better. All you have to do is start reading personal abortion stories, to read studies or summaries of them that show that most women are perfectly comfortable with it, to read the stories of the doctors who provide abortions and how grateful their patients are. It’s easy to not read those stories when you’re anti-choice, but once you’re pro-choice, don’t you have a responsibility to spend a little time — just a little, an hour, a half-hour — reading up on the actual facts?

        So no, I don’t go easy on people. I hardly ever go easy on people — ask around, I’m well known for it. But I’m also happy to drop it as soon as someone stops saying things that harm people. Even more so if they apologize. I’ll help to educate them, if they actually want that. But when I get hurt, I get angry, and then I say something.

  • http://puddinsilovemylife.blogspot.com/ Tonya Richard

    Ok, I just read the comments by anonymous and Dianne, and I obviously do not know what I am talking about and am still thinking from a pro life mindset or just my own mindset. Please forgive my ignorance ladies…..it is so hard to let these beliefs that have been drilled into you since birth go. I wrongly assume that everyone feels like me about children and not everyone does.

    • http://patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism Libby Anne

      I think the thing to remember is that not everyone views their pregnancy or fetus the same way. For some women, most especially those with wanted pregnancies, the fetus becomes important and loved as a child long before birth. But plenty of women, most especially those with unwanted pregnancies, do not see the fetus, particularly the first trimester fetus, like that at all. Rather than feeling that they have killed “their child,” after their abortion they simply feel relief that a bad situation is over and they can move on. But I do think it’s an individual thing, and while many – most? – feel relief as their primary emotion after an abortion, some suffer with feelings of guilt and “what if.” I think it’s important not to minimize how traumatic the decision to abort can be for some women, but it’s also important not to think that it is so for every woman, or even most women. I recently talked to a Catholic young woman who had an abortion several years ago because she and her husband were not ready or able for a child, and she said while she sometimes wonders “what if” she hasn’t had any guilt or regret at all – and this even though she was raised Catholic and still identifies as such.

      Also, I would point out that suffering a miscarriage of a wanted fetus is extremely different from aborting an unwanted fetus. I really don’t think the two can be equated at all, for obvious reasons.

    • http://patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism Libby Anne

      But I understand this being a difficult issue to sort through, after being pro-life for so long. I feel like I’m starting to get a grasp on it and on where I stand, but it has been a long process for me as well. *hugs*

    • Dianne

      Tonya, I apologize for being overly harsh in my response to you. I didn’t mean to be, but I was and I apologize.

      • http://puddinsilovemylife.blogspot.com/ Tonya Richard

        Oh Dianne, I didn’t find you overly harsh at all! I am just really realizing how brain washed I am or was. Your comment was very well received : ) Definitely no need to apologize!

    • MadGastronomer

      Please don’t assume, either, that those of us who have had abortion don’t feel like you do about children. You don’t have any idea about it. I didn’t have an abortion because I didn’t ever want children. In fact, I love children, and want them very much. I dream about having them. I had an abortion because I have bipolar disorder, and I was still learning to manage it. I had finally found a medication that kept me from being actively suicidal, and it was, as many of them are, severely teratogenic (causes birth defects). No doctor would let me stay on it while I was pregnant, but without it I was constantly on the verge of slicing open my veins or driving into a tree at high speed. My choice was: either I can have an abortion and learn to manage my bipolar successfully and maybe someday be in a position where I can have kids and be a good parents, or I can commit suicide or permanently disable myself trying. I have never, not for one moment, regretted it, and now that choice is putting me in a position, twelve years later, where I’m engaged and we’re talking about having kids.

      I posted my previous response before I saw your response. I’m glad you apologized, thank you for that, but you’re still making assumptions about people who have had abortions that are completely false. And it is utterly infuriating to me, in part because I hear it again and again, and there is so much out there that counters it that is so easy to find, and yet I keep having to explain this again and again. I get so very tired of it.

      Please, please, please understand that people who have abortions have every attitude, and more reasons to have abortions than you can imagine, and that you know nothing about their feelings unless you ask them.

      • http://puddinsilovemylife.blogspot.com/ Tonya Richard

        Again, I am very sorry for my ignorance. You are so right, I really don’t know what I am talking about. Just know that I am really really trying to educate myself. I should have read the other comments before submitting my own…..I did not mean to upset you. Please forgive me.

      • MadGastronomer

        Certainly, and thank you for your apology. If you’re looking to better understand how people feel and think about their abortions, I suggest I’m Not Sorry, a large collection of individual stories about abortion, from people who, as the title says, are not sorry.

      • T

        Thank you for this link! I look forward to checking this out.
        I have friends who have faced the same issue as you with VERY necessary medications being harmful to any potential pregnancy. I cannot even imagine being in those shoes. I hope that you will be able to find a good solution that keeps you and a baby safe.

        Thanks again for your helpful information, and again, try to be patient with those of us who want to grow! :) I know for me personally, my mind is being blown constantly with the realization of how many wrong ideas I have held onto so firmly. I love it, and I wish it would go a bit faster! :)

      • MadGastronomer

        You’re welcome!
        Happily, today there are much better medications, and the one I take now is compatible with pregnancy. I’m engaged to be married next spring, and now it’s all down to money and a few other factors. I have great hopes.

    • merridee

      I’ve fortunately never been pregnant, but my plan was for unwanted pregnancy, formulated @ age nine, was always suicide. I’ve never wanted children and the idea of carrying a fetus in my body was always enough to cause a full blown panic attack.

      • Monimonika

        I hope you’ve revised your plan a bit by now ;-)

      • http://wonderingwanderingthoughts.blogspot.com OneSmallStep

        Merridee,

        I sympathize. I looked up the symptoms of tokophobia — fear of pregnancy — and I have them all. The idea of having my body hijacked by an embryo/fetus, and all the side effects that go along with it — along with giving birth and all the potential side effects of that — almost makes me hate being a woman. The only reason why it doesn’t is because we (currently, though pro-lifers want to change that) have the freedom in society to *not* be held hostage to our biology, and can end a pregnancy.

        But that’s what it comes down to for me — pro-lifers make me hate being a woman, because my child-bearing abilities are prized above all else, and they feel that no matter what’s going on in my life, if I’m ever pregnant, that trumps everything else. Who I am, what I want, what I feel, what I experience — doesn’t matter to them.

  • Rey

    Wow, what honesty! So, woman who is unintentionally pregnant, just ditch your career and have your baby! It’ll be worth it, we promise!

    I get off my morning bus right near My Fair City’s PP where there are always protesters. Today I saw a woman from my neighborhood holding a sign saying, “Unwanted today — Blessing tomorrow.” I marveled at the skill with which the dash elided over just how Unwanted transmutes into Blessing. Two blocks later, as I passed Catholic Charities, I marveled once more, this time at the paradox of why it is I see the same protesters day-after-day publicly proclaiming their love for and desire to help women, but have never seen them in Catholic Charities — or at the women and children’s shelter five blocks after that.

    • merridee

      That’s rich. I have a younger sister who was an unplanned baby – an ‘unwanted’ pregnancy – the 4th pregnancy my mom had had in as many years. Now, nearly 54, my sister suffers chronically with the knowledge that she was not a wanted baby. No matter how much Mom loved and demonstrated her love for my sister, the only thing she knows is that she was not wanted. It has affected her life and made her miserable with the belief she started off unlovable and unworthy of love and because of that she doesn’t deserve good relationships, that she has no right to want love and more. She has been in a crippling depression for the better part of 20 years with no relief in sight. She doesn’t feel her life is a blessing and never has. I know. I’m her big sister.

    • Liberated Liberal

      Such a marvelous observation!

      I’ve always wondered why these same “pro-lifers” aren’t the ones out there adopting as many children as they possibly can to support their own “beliefs” that every baby is a blessing.

      • http://inthesheepfold.blogspot.com Kelly@inthesheepfold

        My bet is you’d stop wondering if you knew many pro-life people. On my block alone, there is a family of seven who adopted an additional eight children, a family of three who adopted a group of three siblings, and another family of three who adopted three older children who had been terribly abused.

        The canard that pro-lifers’ love for babies ends at birth may be pithy, but I’ve found it to be wholly untrue.

        Look at homeless shelters, crisis pregnancy centers, soup kitchens, etc., and you will find dedicated people who support life from conception until natural death.

  • http://AztecQueen2000.blogspot.com AztecQueen2000

    If only we lived in a world where–
    All husbands were loving, involved, kind-hearted, active fathers,
    Birth control for women was safe, effective and low-cost (I don’t want to hear about condoms–they only work IF you put them on correctly and IF the man will even wear it.),
    No employer ever terminated an employee for getting pregnant,
    Healthcare was low-cost and readily available, including prenatal and neonatal care,
    Maternity leave for six months to a year was a guaranteed right for all employees,
    And no woman ever felt pressured NOT to use contraceptives–
    then the number of abortions would drop dramatically.

    • Dianne

      I don’t know about the first one-men are people and are as variable as women, no matter where you are-but the other criteria (easy access to birth control, employers don’t terminate for pregnancy, extended maternity and paternity leave, health care) are met in some western and northern European countries. Unsurprisingly, the abortion rate in these countries is considerably lower than in the US.

      • Jenora Feuer

        For example, here in Ontario, the rules are:
        Anybody who has been working for an employer for at least 13 weeks is eligible for both pregnancy and parental leave.
        Pregnancy leave should begin within 17 weeks of the due date, and lasts for 17 weeks.
        Parental leave lasts for 37 weeks, or 35 weeks if pregnancy leave is taken as well. (Yes, this means that a woman giving birth to her own child can have an entire year off.)
        Parental leave applies not only to father of the child, but also adoptive parents and ‘a person who is in a relationship of some permanence with a parent of the child and who plans on treating the child as his or her own’, which was probably a workaround to allow partners of gay couples to get parental leave before the marriages became recognized.
        Of course, we still have the same problems with enforcement on this, in that businesses can and do deliberately eliminate the job that a person was working so they don’t feel they have to hire the person back afterward. I’ve heard of cases that have gone both ways on this.

      • http://AztecQueen2000.blogspot.com AztecQueen2000

        The first one is because there are babies conceived in less-than-ideal situations. A woman may want more children, and be financially able to support them, but may opt out because the father is emotionally absent, abusive, or just plain no help at all.

      • Petticoat Philosopher

        True, but there are legitimately a lot of dead-beat dads out there and I think it’s fair to ask whether there would be so many if our society didn’t inundate men with the ideas that:
        a) women are there for men’s sexual use, all entitlement, no responsibility
        b)babies are women’s business and not something that men need to be involved with (unless they’re Extra Special Good Guys who are decked with laurels for simply caring for their own children.)

        You can’t ever completely weed out bad behavior but I can’t believe that things wouldn’t be better if we taught men to respect women and parenthood. Of course, that would still not ever eliminate the demand for abortion because there are still plenty of reasons a woman might want an abortion even with a supportive partner and adequate resources. But it would still be nice.

    • MadGastronomer

      Not everyone who gets pregnant has a husband at all. Some people who get pregnant are even married to women. Maybe you could use language that reflects other people’s realities.

      • Dianne

        Some people who get pregnant are even married to women.

        The chances of an unwanted pregnancy go down for women married to women. It’s not impossible while rape exists, of course, but it’s less likely. This may be one of the reasons why physical abuse rates are much lower among families headed by lesbian couples and sexual abuse is virtually unheard of. Unlike the theoretical child in Barry’s song who would be, unfortunately, at higher than average risk of being abused if it is born.

      • MadGastronomer

        Less likely, yes. But there are non-monogamous bisexual women married to women, and there are trans women who are still fertile who are married to women. I know people in both of these situations, and while none of them are or have been pregnant while in this situation, it is entirely possible.

  • appellategirl

    Tonya, my feelings are very similar to yours. From my perspective, the issue is not whether abortion is a good or bad thing in itself, or whether women will regret it or will not regret it. The point is, the government should not be able to force a woman to undergo pregnancy, childbirth, and motherhood against her will. Period. A woman’s body is her own, and no one should have the power to force her to do something to and with her body against her will. That means abortion must be legal. Period.

    How I feel about abortion is for me, and how you feel about abortion is for you. It is not wrong for me to feel like I could never have had an abortion because I would be haunted by the child that never was. That is my feeling, my choice to make. What would be wrong is for me to take that feeling and try to use it to justify it to prevent other women from making their own choice with their own bodies.

  • appellategirl

    Forgot to add that I agree that birth control is the key. I would hope that everyone (those who want abortion to be illegal and those who want it to stay legal) should be able to agree that improving access to contraception is a good thing, will help women be able to make choices with their bodies, and will help prevent the need for abortions. I think people who are both anti-abortion AND anti-birth control are terrible hypocrites, because it’s not “life” they care about, it’s controlling other people’s sexuality.

  • http://collegeatthirty.blogspot.com Heidi

    I am working so freaking HARD at getting a career I have dreamed about since I was a child, and just finally got to an emotional place where I’m feeling like I can actually do what I want to do with my life. If I had a child right now, I would be depressed because that would mean some sort of delay in my career. Coupled with the fact that I don’t want children and have a past that would make it very difficult for me to think about even having children, I do believe it would be a mistake for me to have a child. I can’t say that the same will be said in ten years–it’s possible that between now and then, I will have married a man I can trust and who will help me walk through any decisions for the both of us, but I do know that I will never give up this career, this dream. IT is a child to me. I am germinating it and putting as much time and energy into it that I would a kid (and I’m not trying to offend any mothers out there, I’m sure your kids are great and worth everything you give them), so I can honestly say that I would never ever laugh at losing this career. I would cry and feel a very great sense of loss. It would be my form of miscarriage.

    I agree with Apellategirl up there, birth control is what’s important. If people really want women to have fewer abortions, stop trying to limit our availability of birth control.

  • Mikev6

    That is one truly terrible song. Of all the possible song topics in the universe do we really need one on this?

    I always find it ironic that people who are against a woman’s choice on this issue always seem to feel that women have so much choice otherwise in their lives. There’s always this sub-text that women are just being a little selfish and could really go through pregnancy, birth and the next 18 years quite comfortably but simply decide not to. And the further irony that “forced-birth” people tend to be the same ones actively working to reduce a woman’s economic ability to choose the non-abortion path if that’s her desire.

    I have a daughter heading off to college in the fall. I am only now realizing that I’ve been asleep at the switch – I assumed that her rights to abortion choice and birth control were givens and didn’t need defending any more. I was wrong.

  • shadowspring

    I have never wondered about children I didn’t conceive. I have never wondered about the child I lost through miscarriage as a teen. I believe that child dodged a bullet for sure, since according to my theology *IF* his/her soul had already developed, he/she grew up in heaven, a land without sorrow or heartache.

    I have feared to think what kind of parent I might have been if I had been QF, looking at the ragged, worn mothers of many I do know in real life. I am still in really good shape for my age, and am about to embark on the adventure of a career. I have confidence that QF moms lack. My home schooled children have excellent educations- something lacking for many of the middle kids in the QF pack.

    I have never regretted any of my child bearing decisions. I did the right thing, to only have two, and space them four years apart. I have friends who have had abortions AND gone on to be QF for a season, who still never regretted their teen abortions. That song is just more shaming being dumped in the name of religion. It’s just horrible.

  • shadowspring

    ps I realize that rich QFers can sometimes look and lead quite glamorous lives: look at the Duggar mansion! I am only referring to the QFers I personally know IRL as “ragged, worn”. They struggle against dire poverty and in the midst of all the religious/political activities, don’t have much time for education. The oldest got good educations, and the youngest probably will do okay, but those middle children’s education is “caught on the fly” so to speak.

  • MadGastronomer

    I still wonder, occasionally, what the child I might have had would have been like. I had my abortion twelve, nearly thirteen, years ago now. The kid would be in fifth grade, I think. But it’s not regret, it’s merely curiosity of the road-not-taken sort. Because I know that if I had attempt to continue that pregnancy, I would have committed suicide or severely injured myself in the attempt. I would never have moved to Seattle, never have gone to culinary school, never have opened a restaurant, never have met my fiancee. I might never even have learned to manage my bipolar as well as I have. If I had survived, I would be miserable. I would probably still be stuck living with my parents or on their charity. No matter how much I loved that child, I would feel trapped. I might even have had to give my child up, which I would probably have found far more traumatic after having time to bond, because of uncontrolled bipolar.

  • http://cfiottawa.com Eamon Knight

    I’d wipe away all your tears and make you laugh at your lost career

    I can’t get over the sheer casual condescendingness of this. Career? You didn’t want a career, you silly girl! Just have a cute widdle baby and you’ll forget about all that and be much happier!

    And of course the author is a man — he’s got a career, writing sappy songs for the Catholic market.

    (BTW: I notice the owner of that blog is called “Behe” — any relation to Michael?)

    • http://patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism Libby Anne

      I notice the owner of that blog is called “Behe” — any relation to Michael?

      Yes. His wife.

      • http://cfiottawa.com Eamon Knight

        Ah hah! I couldn’t find any personal info over there, but I figured the name can’t be that common.

        One of their teenage sons became an atheist a year or so back, and got somewhat ostracized by his parents (it was all over Pharyngula, IIRC).

  • Dianne

    make you laugh at your lost career

    It took me a bit to figure out why this line bothered me so much, but the basic reason is that it assumes that a woman’s “career” is of no use to anyone except, perhaps, herself and is essentially a toy that can be put aside when she gets some “real” work like raising a child.

    I don’t think I need to go into why this is insulting to women. If nothing else, it’s quite reminiscent of the old line about lesbians just needing to be raped by the right man to turn them straight.

    But it’s also dangerous nonsense for society in general. Would the world have been better off if Rosalind Franklin had given up her career and went and had babies instead of taking the picture that allowed Crick and Wilkins to figure out the structure of DNA? Does Angela Merkel’s contributions to the political scene in Europe have no meaning? Would world literature be unchanged if Jane Austen had put aside her pen in favor of raising babies? Regardless of your opinion of whether or not any of these women benefited the world, I don’t think that anyone can claim that they didn’t influence it.

    • Petticoat Philosopher

      Very good point that put into words what bothered ME so much about that line too. You’re right, it pretty much implies that women have nothing to contribute to the world except babies. It fits into the common conservative rhetoric that seems to say that women who choose careers are basically just bored and unfulfilled and think that a career will be a bit of a lark. It couldn’t be because they have actual passions and interests and want to contribute to their society. Ugh.

      • http://www.barrybozz.com Barry Bozz

        How silly Petticoat. The line does not denigrate a woman’s career. It simply stands for anything one might have to sacrifice to have a baby as opposed to ending his/her’s life. You’re attributing all the stereotypical male bashing agenda here. Ending another life is the last thing anyone should want, regardless of what is at stake. Career, comfort, money, friends, even family. We see it as murder. You don’t. OK, but please give me a break and don’t say what I never said. As if I really believe women have” no actual passions and interests”. I ran 2 group homes for emotionally damaged teenage girls as well as caring for 21 foster teenage girls in my own home with my wife while raising three daughters.God Bless You, The Monster Barry Bozz.

      • Petticoat Philosopher

        Barry, all your I-understand-teh-wimminz cred, commendable as it is, does not change the fact that the line in question reflects some assumptions on your part that denigrate the value of women’s careers, whether you explicitly stated them or not. It’s one thing for you to say that giving up a career is not too much to ask. That’s your opinion, and I expect that I would share it if I actually believed that abortion is murder. (I will be magnanimous and grant to you that that is the true motive behind your position.) It’s quite another thing altogether to say that a woman would not even miss her career. You call it a sacrifice now but your song barely even acknowledges it as such. Because what’s a career anyway for a woman, right? Just an indulgence that nobody will miss if it’s cast by the wayside.

        What about the social value of women’s careers? Before I went back to school (and hopefully again after I finish soon), I worked in the non-profit sector with high risk teenagers. I chose my career because I wanted to help solve a problem in my community and because I wanted to dedicate myself to a career that served others. And, as uphill a battle as it can be, I know that I have done good and I believe in what I do. There is value to my work besides my own personal fulfillment. It’s not just some disposable thing that can be replaced with the pitter patter of little feet and never thought of again. (As much as I would like the pitter patter of little feet some day, not now.)

        If you still believe that a woman’s lost career is worth it to avoid abortion, fine, you’re free to think what you’d like. But at least pay us women the respect of acknowledging that it is a genuine, and meaninful loss.

        As for your tiresome accusation of “stereotypical male bashing agenda,” don’t be absurd. I’m not bashing men. I’m bashing your sexist and dismissive attitude towards the contributions that women make to this world besides babies. If you really think that ALL men hold such an attitude, then it seems to me that you’re the one bashing men.

  • Paula G V aka Yukimi

    My mother had two abortions before having my younger brother and me and she did so because she was the one maintaining the household while my father finished his career and she decided it wasn’t a good time. Afaik she hasn’t felt any regret and talks about it without remorse, in fact she uses it to remind us that were very much wanted. We haven’t been pretty well economically so I can’t think how much worse things would have been and my mother has a tendency for depression so the mix with unwanted pregnancies doesn’t sound so hot…

  • LaurenF

    Even just that excerpt of song (I have no interest in reading the full lyrics) fills me with rage. Much like that damned Christmas shoes song they play every year. I nearly break the radio each time I turn that one off.

  • Rilian

    Men are allowed to “selfishly” go after a career, but women aren’t.
    Also, I’m poor. I live with my parents, I have no job, my mom doesn’t make enough money to support us all by half, we’re going more and more into debt, and just hoping that I find a job before we all starve to death. If my birth control failed, I’d get an abortion in the blink of an eye. I DO want to have a kid or two in my life, I won’t feel like I’ve really lived until I do, but I’m sure as hell not going to have a kid NOW when I don’t even have a job. And a baby in the womb doesn’t have feelings or sensations or ANYTHING so you’re not even hurting it at all by killing it early on, you’re just preventing any sentient being from coming about. And if you believe it has a soul, well then said soul just goes to heaven, doesn’t it?

  • http://wonderingwanderingthoughts.blogspot.com OneSmallStep

    ** Have the voice of the unborn pleading not for itself but for the life and happiness of his/her mother!**

    This is an interesting phrasing that the author of the song uses. Too often, the way pro-lifers use the word life in terms of saving the unborn is that life = existence. No more, no less. The life of the mother can never be threatened (unless the pregnancy is deadly to the woman) because her existence continues, whereas abortion ends the existence of the fetus.

    Yet here, we have the author saying that to not abort saves the life of the mother … even though the mother’s existence isn’t threatened.

  • Rilian

    Also, if you quit your job, where is the money supposed to come from?

  • http://www.barrybozz.com Barry Bozz

    As the author of The Gift ( Mommy Don’t)” the response by “pro- choice” people is so sad. All of the emotional reasons for ending the life of a child assume that murder is better than whatever difficult life changes the new life would cause the mother, and a Mother you are from the moment of conception. Whatever beneficial good, a mother might possess from the death of her child ( a million dollars with Mister Right?) pales with the moral loss and spiritual consequences of killing one’s own child.
    The song is an appeal for the life of would-be- Rachels, not for the child’s life, but for you dear Mommys! Don’t make the terrible error of killing your child for what seems to be good reason. There are many difficult choices and horrible situations that might impell you to commit abortion, but all of those reasons will one day be seen be as nothing with the realization that you have killed your own child. Mommy Don’t! Barry Bozz
    Like ·

    • MadGastronomer

      Have you ever bothered to actually listen to women who have had abortions? We are not talking only about emotional reasons. We are talking about very real and very practical considerations. WE ARE TALKING ABOUT OUR SURVIVAL AND WELLBEING AND THAT OF THE CHILDREN SOME OF US ALREADY HAVE. Your forced-birth politics conveniently ignore that. We are talking about families on the verge starving. We are talking about women (right here, me included) who would commit suicide if forced to continue pregnancies. You have no fucking clue. Your nonsensical and insulting song is pure garbage, with no relation to reality.
      Which is not to say, by any means, that the emotional reasons you claim to be addressing are not real and valid reasons. Of course they are, your ignorance and dismissal of them notwithstanding. But you are ignoring the many many other reasons people have abortions.
      Your tactics are foul and shaming, and you know absolutely nothing of the real reasons people have abortions. Nor do you know anything of our feelings about having done so. Having an abortion saved my life, despite your deluded characterization of it as “emotional reasons”. I have never once regretted it. It did me no harm and a world of good.
      You are a terrible human being, seeking to hurt and shame people already going through the fear, pain and uncertainty that comes with unintended pregnancies. Abortion brings an end to that fear, pain and uncertainty, when it’s chosen. Your song prolongs it.

      • http://www.barrybozz.com Barry Bozz

        Dear Mad G,
        Please read my response closer. I said that the beneficial good that a Mother might receive is nothing to the beneficial dis-value she will embrace when she chooses to kills her child. As the awful human being I am, I agree with that, the song seeks not to shame but, rather, to change the mind of a mother considering the tragic decision of abortion. I am well aware of the suffering many women must endure with the birth of a child, but murder will not make it better. Indeed, your virulent post shows your guilt and your need to ask God’s forgiveness. And He will forgive you for your sin, but you must ask for it and not deny it. How could I shame you if you did not feel that shame.But that’s a good sign. I feel only love and compassion for you and your situation and I will remember you today at Church and pray for you, dearest Mad G.

      • MadGastronomer

        Don’t ever pray for me, you condescending, misogynistic piece of crap. Keep your thoughts away from me. You are saying that it would be better for me to have committed suicide — thereby also “murdering” the fetus — than to have lived and had a life. You are, indeed, calling me a murderer. You would have countless women die. You are wishing death upon us, no matter how you dress it up. This is not a matter of you think it’s murder so you get to say horrible things to us, this is a matter of you actively wishing harm on women, and when it doesn’t come true, you claiming that they have been harmed, in direct contravention of their own experiences, and insisting that they have done something horrible. No. You are not moral. You are scum. You would take away my life, if you could, because you think that a fetus is worth more than I am.

    • http://patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism Libby Anne

      Buzz – What you say might make some sense – IF abortion were “murdering your child.” But it’s not. Neither Mad G nor I nor most of those who regularly comment here see abortion as morally wrong or as murder, in any sense. So the arguments you’re making aren’t really going to work here as we’re starting from different premises.

      • http://www.barrybozz.com Barry Bozz

        True, Libby Anne. To what extent a person fails to see that the unborn is not a human being, does mitigate the guilt of the act. Of course, IF a person admits the unborn is a human being many would never do it. As in war, we must de-humanize those who we kill. Same thing here. We can’t admit the child is a child and live with ourselves. I do pray very hard for all those women who have been duped. I love them all as does God. My attempt to bring humanity to the unborn is an act of love for women. Socrates once said: “It is Better to be the victim of an injustice, rather than to commit an injustice.” He means that violating the moral good hurts the person more than whatever the victim’s loses, money, health etc. Injustice mares our humanity at it’s deepest level. My next album will attempt to console all the Rachels. This song was to help a woman not become a Rachel. God Bless you, Libby Anne.

      • MadGastronomer

        Except, scum, that many people who DO think it’s murder get abortions anyway — “pro-life” women who would take the right away from others get abortions, too. Because abortion is too often truly necessary. You know nothing of what it’s like to be pregnant in a bad situation, or indeed pregnant at all. Don’t talk about subjects of which you are completely ignorant.

    • Anonymous

      Hey, it’s Anonymous again, the one who doesn’t regret her abortion.

      The thing that bugs me the most about your posts, Bozz, is the condescension. You are presuming that you know what is best for me, a random woman on the internet. You claim to *know* that some day I’ll regret my abortion, that some day the guilt will overtake me, and that the life I am living now is not as good as the life I would have had if I had chosen to have a child.

      What gives you the right to say that about me? You don’t know me. You don’t know anything about my life. You are presuming that your religious conviction is worth more than my religious conviction. You are saying that your understanding of my life, morals, and choices is worth more than MY OWN understanding of my own life, morals, and choices. That your god should have more say in my life than my god. That is the height of pretension and condescension.

      I can tell you that my life is so much better than it would have been had I not had an abortion. I won’t tell you why because it doesn’t and shouldn’t matter. You can choose not to believe me, but by doing that you are also choosing to abandon empathy, conversation, understanding, and civil discourse, because you have decided that my opinion is not worth as much as your opinion.

      • MadGastronomer

        Yes. This. All of it.

    • Cheryl

      First and foremost, I’d love to see the number of abortions in the States, and the world, take a major plunge and they’d only occur because the woman’s life was in danger or there was something wrong with the baby, that it wouldn’t survive or would have a hellish quality of life and suffering after birth. That said, Barry, your patronizing, condescending assumption that you know there’s no reason a woman could have that justifies abortion and that it’s a given a woman will come to see whatever her circumstances were, abortion would have been the wrong decision. You assume that every woman will be happy she chose to carry the child to term. News flash: there are circumstances in which an abortion is preferable. The woman who has posted here that she got an abortion because otherwise she’d have had to have gone off the meds keeping her bipolar under control and she’d have ended up killing herself or crashing her car, I totally understand why she’d get an abortion. The woman who’s in an abusive relationship and wants out and knows if she has the baby, that will add a whole new level of hell to her existence and she doesn’t want any child of hers growing up with an abusive father. She doesn’t want to run the risk of complications from being smacked around and suffering a miscarriage. She doesn’t want to give the abusive asshole she’s trying to get away from anything he can use to try and control her and retaliate against her for leaving him with. A woman who’s living in poverty and can barely support herself, never mind a child, and is in school and knows giving the child up for adoption would be incredibly emotionally and mentally traumatic for her and she’d probably feel guilt over it for most, if not the rest, of her life. She needs this schooling so she can get a better job and improve her situation in life. Or how about a woman who is phobic of pregnancy and just the thought of being pregnant makes her want to slash her wrists? Oh, yes, and the woman who was raped and became pregnant, and the wife who is now pregnant even though she and her husband were using birth control and they cannot afford another child. They wish they could, but they absolutely cannot and they cannot afford the prenatal costs that would come if she chose to keep the child and give it up for adoption because what health insurance they have doesn’t cover many, if any, of those costs. Then there are the women who Do Not want to have a child. Ever. At all. They know they wouldn’t be good mothers and the idea of having kids is totally unappealing. Would you tell those women that, hey, it’ll be worth it to live in poverty? That the abused woman should pray for her partner and try to get through to him so he’ll see the error of his ways; that her having a child will be a blessing to the relationship? Or for the women who know they’ll try to kill themselves, that it’s selfish to avoid killing yourself? That the raped woman should see the pregnancy as a gift from God? What about the woman trying to make a better life for herself? Do you really think there’s no chance she’d end up resenting the child? Do you honestly think that there’s no chance her plans being sidetracked wouldn’t end up with her being stuck in poverty because of an unplanned child? Would you tell the women who Do Not want kids that, hey, have a kid, you’ll change your mind? All of that is patronizing, condescending, ignorant, rose-colored-glasses bull$hit.

      Sometimes, choosing to stay pregnant and give birth is *not* the better option. The people most fit to make the decision if a woman should have an abortion or not is the woman and her doctor, in that order. They are the ones with all the information and all the facts. Not male politicians, who will never actually have to make those kinds of decisions, not the woman’s friends, not the woman’s co-workers, not the woman’s pastor. Not a man who has experience working with at-risk teens and been a foster father to twentysomething foster children. No man will ever truly be able to understand what it is like to be pregnant and in circumstances that make you wonder if you should get an abortion. Until it’s your life that’s going to be impacted and affected for at least the next nine months because another being is growing inside your body, you cannot truly understand what it’s like, and until you have lived in poverty, been told you have to go off a medication that keeps you from hurting yourself and/or others, have been raped/sexually assaulted, are confronted with having to live with your worst fear 24/7, or any of the other myriad of circumstances that women who choose abortion are faced with or you somehow become God, take your smug attitude of ‘I know what’s best for you’ and shove it up real, real deep.

  • http://wonderingwanderingthoughts.blogspot.com OneSmallStep

    ** Indeed, your virulent post shows your guilt and your need to ask God’s forgiveness. **

    No, what the post is showing is anger. It’s anger over a group of people that want to force women to stay pregnant and give birth. It’s anger over a group of people that simply do not care about the impact a forced pregnancy would have over a woman’s life — and I’m using life in more than just an “existence” sense. It’s anger over telling a woman that her body is no longer her own, and an embryo has more rights to her body than she does. It’s anger over biological reductionism, and saying that the main thing that makes a person a person is human DNA — and not a conscious, thoughts, dreams, experiences — any of that. It’s saying that an embryo possessing human DNA has more rights than someone who can think, feel, and experience. Mad G is more than DNA, and yet your post shows you value DNA above anything else. You value mere unthinking, unfeeling existence over anything else.

    Hell, you value it over MadG’s very existence — she clearly stated that if she was forced to continue a pregnancy, she would’ve killed herself. And your post is claiming that you’d prefer her to commit suicide than get an abortion.

    • http://www.barrybozz.com Barry Bozz

      Dear Onesmallstep, To bring your argument to it’s logical conclusion. Infanticide would also be OK if we apply your criteria for what is human and of greater value to live. After all , a baby just born has “no conscious thought, dreams or experiences”. In fact, many pro-choice folks have reasoned that a 2 year old should be the cut-off point for terminating the life of a child using your very logic.
      Your point that DNA is more important than a living feeling person, implicitly recognizes the humanity of the unborn, although it has not yet been able to develop into fully rational thinking human being. DNA is the stuff that determines a being’s Humanity. Frog DNA makes frogs, frogs. Kill a tadpole and you’ve killed a frog. Kill a fetus and you’ve killed a human being.
      As far as MadG suicidal threat, I don’t minimize or invalidate those terrible feelings. But if a person says “I’ll kill myself unless I can kill another innocent human being” I’d do my best to talk her out of that, as I would anyone threatening suicide. There is adoption. And there are many pro- life orgs that will help with other means. Follow me on Twiiter @barrybozz Thanks for responding to my post.

      • MadGastronomer

        You lie and you lie and you lie.
        And apparently you didn’t actually read my post. If I had remained pregnant, I would not have been able to keep taking my medication, the first I had found that kept me from being suicidal. Adoption can’t fix that, nor can it fix most of the problems with being pregnant when you don’t want to be. You lie when you say it can, just as you lie about so many other things to do with this issue. If your cause were truly just, you wouldn’t need to lie.

      • Dianne

        After all , a baby just born has “no conscious thought, dreams or experiences”.

        Actually, it probably does. Quite a number of physiologic changes occur at birth. One important change is the movement from diffusion of oxygen from the maternal to fetal circulation to the breathing of air. This is important because it means that the baby is exposed to higher levels of oxygen for the first time and probably for the first time has sufficient oxygen to have significant activity in the cortical neurons. In other words, breathing (as opposed to getting second hand oxygen from the mother) allows the baby to think and have experiences for the first time. And we know for certain that newborns dream or at least have REM sleep, which is associated with dreaming in adults and children. So it is very likely that a newborn has literal dreams and experiences. Conscious thought? Who knows? That’s harder to measure. But babies are distinct from fetuses, even if they are the same age post-conception, because of their location and physiology. So any argument that they are just the same is either disingenuous or ignorant of biology.

  • http://wonderingwanderingthoughts.blogspot.com OneSmallStep

    No, that’s not the logical conclusion, because we aren’t talking about an infant and an adult – each with their own body, and not attached to anyone else. We’re talking about an embryo and a fetus — which one has more rights to the woman’s body? Who gets to determine if the woman remains pregnant? Her or the state? We are talking about pregnancy here, and so the state of a born infant is in a totally different category. In the case of a born infant, you are no longer telling the woman she is forced to be pregnant and give birth.

    We are talking about the situation *at that moment.* The only thing that an embryo and a pregnant woman have in common is DNA — and if your argument is that the DNA trumps everything else, then you’ve reduced person hood to possessing DNA. No more, no less. That is biological reductionism. It’s valuing unthinking, unfeeling DNA over *anything else,” and that is what you are doing. That is why so many women here are angry with you. We’re more than just our DNA.

    You *are* invaliding her experiences, especially if you offer adoption as a solution. The whole point was that pregnancy and childbirth would drive her to suicide — offering adoption as a solution trivializes what pregnancy and childbirth do to women, especially an unwanted pregnancy. Adoption is not the solution to an unwanted pregnancy — it doesn’t stop the pregnancy.

    And no, “many” pro-choice haven’t argued that two year old infants are the cut-off points. A few have.

    • MadGastronomer

      Eh. Not the childbirth so much, and the pregnancy only by depriving me of the meds I needed to survive at that point. Just a small correction. :) Thanks, though, for standing up for me while I was sleeping.

      • http://wonderingwanderingthoughts.blogspot.com OneSmallStep

        Correction noted. :)

  • http://www.barrybozz.com Barry Bozz

    You just shifted the argument to a human being attached to another Human Being as justification for killing the child. The argument from body privacy. Let me ask: If this is true would you condone a woman “terminating a pregnancy” on the day before her due date? It’s legal in many States. If not, why not?
    It’s not about DNA . You can do whatever you want with your own DNA. It’s about Being Human. It’s about what each parent donates in the moment of conception that creates a new human life. We are not Kangaroos. Our young develop in the womb of the female, not in an external pouch.

    • MadGastronomer

      You are lying again. Late term abortion is only legal in cases of medical necessity in the US, in cases where the fetus has defects incompatible with life, or in which the life of the pregnant person is in danger. Even before that law passed, late term abortions were only performed for those reasons because the procedure is too taxing to do it for other reasons. There are only two doctors in the US who perform late term abortions, making them extremely difficult to obtain even when medically necessary. The conditions that would require a pregnant person to have an abortion one day before term, and make that procedure less potentially harmful than giving birth, are nonexistent. You are simply lying. That does not happen.
      But my body is my own, indeed is me, and I do what I will with it, or I am not being granted the full rights of a human being. That includes being pregnant or not as I will it. When you take away that right, you have made me less than human, and the fetus more, as there is no circumstance in which we give a human being the right to use another’s body without consent. That is what you are doing. You are turning people into animals, and elevating things which are not people into more than people. You are attempting to kill people.

      • http://wonderingwanderingthoughts.blogspot.com OneSmallStep

        **You just shifted the argument to a human being attached to another Human Being as justification for killing the child.**

        This is the entire argument! Does or does not a woman have the right to terminate a pregnancy? Does the state have the right to force a woman to remain pregnant? If the embryo developed in an environment not attached to a pregnant woman, we wouldn’t be having this discussion. There wouldn’t need to be a pro-choice movement. Which is why an infant isn’t the logical conclusion, because that’s a different argument, with different parameters.

        **It’s not about DNA . You can do whatever you want with your own DNA. It’s about Being Human.**

        Untrue. You said earlier: “Your point that DNA is more important than a living feeling person, implicitly recognizes the humanity of the unborn, although it has not yet been able to develop into fully rational thinking human being” To you, being human = DNA. That’s it. And since you’re saying that a woman should be forced to remain pregnant, then yes, you value DNA above all else. Unthinking, unfeeling DNA. That’s what you’re defending, as — again — opposed to a woman who has a hell of a lot more than just DNA to make her a person. For you, the thing that makes a fertilized egg or an embryo human is the DNA — that’s all you can use as a defense, because there is nothing else the embryo has in comparison to the pregnant woman.

        And MadG is correct. There are no states where it’s legal to “abort” right before the due date, and it is a lie to say otherwise. If there are no medical complications right before the due date, and suddenly one arises then doctors simply induce labor. Late-term abortions in the early third trimester are done for medical reasons only. (And name me one woman who had a nine month pregnancy, and then suddenly asked for an abortion. Just one. It’s a non-issue).

    • Dianne

      If this is true would you condone a woman “terminating a pregnancy” on the day before her due date? It’s legal in many States.

      Which states would those be? Or even which States, if you are using “State” to mean sovereign state rather than one of the United States.

      I can think of scenarios where a woman might want to get an abortion on the day before her due date, if one stretches the definition of “want” by quite a bit: She just found out that the fetus has a malformation that means that it can’t be born normally. She just found out the fetus is dead and wants it removed in the way that gives her the best hope of later fertility. But just because? Um…no.

  • http://www.barrybozz.com Barry Bozz

    Well, I wonder if Mad G and you can hear yourselves. Calling a person a “liar”, an “awful human being”, and other names isn’t an argument. Maybe I was was misinformed? I’m not. Why call me a liar?
    Now, I would go into Roe v. Wade and the practical implications of third trimester abortions and their easy and ready availability under that law, but I can see that I’m dealing with people who are rabid and irrational.
    “And name me one woman who had a nine month pregnancy, and then suddenly asked for an abortion.” I asked you if it would be OK to do so, hypothetically to the argument.
    May God Bless You, I mean that.

    • MadGastronomer

      It is an argument to point out that what you are saying is factually incorrect, which is what I am doing when I say you are lying. It is not legal in any state to get a third-trimester abortion without severe medical need — and no such need exists so close to the due date unless the fetus’ heart has already stopped. Even you can’t justify calling that murder.
      Your hypothetical, though, bears no relation to reality. It doesn’t happen, and is therefor not worth considering. What is worth discussing is exactly what you won’t talk about: the realities of the lives of people who become pregnant and require an abortion, and the realities of what outlawing abortion means, ie, saying that people who can become pregnant are less than human and have fewer rights than those of a human, and killing thousands of them every years. You want to talk about hypotheticals because you know perfectly well that the reality cannot justify your foul argument.
      And calling you an awful human being isn’t an argument, it is a statement of fact. You are trying to cause the deaths of thousands of people every year. Actual people, people living and breathing and acting in the world, not your hypothetical DNA-people who do none of that but are parasites on a person’s body.

      I do not want the blessings of your god, and you continually saying that is quite insulting.

  • http://wonderingwanderingthoughts.blogspot.com OneSmallStep

    **“And name me one woman who had a nine month pregnancy, and then suddenly asked for an abortion.” I asked you if it would be OK to do so, hypothetically to the argument.**

    But that’s like asking if it’s ok to kill unicorns. It’s a nonsense scenario, and is an attempt to equate an embryo with an infant. It simply doesn’t happen, and takes away from the issue. Just like MadG says — we are dealing with things that actually happen. We are dealing with your worldview, and how it impacts women, and what it says about women, and how the state can interfere with their lives.

    And to say that just anyone can get a third trimester abortion is a lie. As MadG says, it’s factually incorrect. That’s the argument. It’s only done in the case of the life or health of the mother. A woman can’t just schedule one like she can with a first trimester abortion.

    You can call us irrational and rabid. But you haven’t dealt with even half our arguments, or answered half our questions.

  • Dianne

    Barry, seriously, is this a person? What about this? Or this? I can tell you for certain that none of the above are capable of thought, feelings, or pain. None of them have dreams, literal or figurative, aspirations, or desires. Unlike the women that you want to condemn to slavery, torture, and death.

  • Mieke

    Hello out there,

    not much to ad to the discussion I guess. Only that my mom planned to have a coil placed and was only waiting for her period to get it done more easily. As it didn´t come she contacted het doctor and het said he could place it anyway, the tiny cluster of cells would simply be rejected. She refused, out of christian virtue and I won´t say I´m sorry about that because otherwise I wouldn´t be alive today (which, incidentally, I rather enjoy). BUT if she had decided otherwise I wouldn´t have blamed her because I would not have known. And even if I had been sitting on a cloud somewhere, watching, I could not have blamed her. Her body, her decision. She´s quite wonderful now and she would have been equally wonderful then.

    • ButchKitties

      In a weird sort of reverse of that situation – my mother was not the first woman my father intended to marry. His first fiancee was killed by a drunk driver shortly after their engagement. It’s quite factual to say that if it had not been for that drunk driver, neither myself nor my brother would have been born. That’s two people whose very existence is predicated upon the unfair and untimely death of an innocent person.

      This is why the “what if your mom had aborted you?” question is so stupid and useless. What if my mom had aborted me? It’s the same result that would have happened if the guy who killed my dad’s first fiancee had decided to call a taxi instead of attempting to drive home and killing an innocent woman in the process. Both actions would have prevented my brother and I from ever existing.

      When the same hypothetical question you use to argue against abortion can be used to argue in favor of drunk driving, that’s a sign your argument is crap.

  • Nurse Bee

    I am just wondering, do you consider yourself actually pro-choice or more pro-abortion? Do you support a woman who chooses to keep her pregnancy just as much as the woman who chooses to get an abortion?

    Personally, as a working mom, I find the lyrics a bit offensive in a different way and honestly I think people who suggest a mother cannot have a career and children are probably contributing to more abortions than not…

    • MadGastronomer

      I think you’re mischaracterizing a pro-abortion stance. To be pro-abortion means to be in favor of readily accessible abortions at any point in a pregnancy to anyone for any reason. It is not incompatible with a pro-choice stance at all, and indeed most people (and I say most only because there are people who hold pretty much any position it’s possible to hold, regardless of how far out there it is) who are pro-abortion are also strongly pro-choice and absolutely 100% behind supporting women who choose to give birth, and work for strong parental leave and benefits, health care, and child care. To be pro-abortion does not mean to think everyone who gets pregnant should have an abortion. That definition is one that has been spread by opponents, not one that describes an actual position.


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