I think I’m getting the hang of the Pro-Life movement, a movement which arose about the time when it became increasingly safe and possible for a woman to obtain an abortion without a whole lot of outside permissions involved.
I believe it works like this:
- Most women love babies. Those who do not love babies are probably evil or something else is wrong with them.
- All babies are born in the image of our Creator and are thereby perfect—none of that “original sin” business. Rather, evil only arises when they gain consciousness and a sense of identity separate from their caregivers.
- It is a sin “to kill” (a person) unless one is a soldier, defending one’s life or the life of another, or is called upon by God to sacrifice that person.
- A fetus is a person only better because God never calls upon anyone to kill or sacrifice a fetus except maybe if the mother’s life is in danger.
- Abortion and adoption are the only manners of ridding oneself of any unwanted live baby since forever. When God kills or miscarries or stillbirths a fetus, that’s God’s business and no one else’s.
Let’s address these points one at a time.
- I love babies just fine especially when I get to hand them back to their mothers. Given that my own parental role models were disasters, it is no wonder that I have (and had) zero confidence in my ability to do right by a child. I was hoping I might get to be an instant grandma one day (by marrying a grandpa), but, that hasn’t worked out. C’est la vie. Meanwhile, I have complete confidence that the world is better for not having any of my progeny to worry about.
- The only reason that fetuses have no capacity for evil is that they have no consciousness and I call “consciousness” the difference between a hunk of biological matter and a person.
- I distrust the whole Ten Commandments thing as I see them as more administrative rules designed to perpetuate a society rather than particularly divine. My reason for this belief is that apparently government authority figures are empowered to disobey them at certain times but ordinary citizens are not. That would make them laws or guidelines rather than moral absolutes. It doesn’t help that these rules are not in fact universal to all monotheistic denominations meaning that they have important differences between the various subdivisions. On another note, I remember reading some “rules to live by” written by Lao Tse, and they made more sense to me. I recall seeing them in the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco many years ago. If anyone wants to reproduce them for me here, I’d appreciate it.
- God or whatever higher authority compels my own morality helped me to make the decision to abort two fetuses in my lifetime. In both cases, it was the right decision and I haven’t regretted either for a moment. In fact, I was recently aware of a human being who struck me as being awfully like how I would imagine a son of mine to act and I was truly horrified and grateful at the same time that he wasn’t that son. Perhaps one day, in a fit of pique, I’ll tell him, at which point he’ll probably wish me dead. It will be quite the magic moment. Meanwhile, since I’m confident that the reader truly wants to know why I had my abortions, I’ll tell you, in just a moment.
- Prior to the advent of safe, legal abortions, there were myriad ways of ridding oneself of any form of baby that one didn’t want. I shall describe the process herewith.
Two major factors of increased lifespan in modern humans are a huge decrease in both infant mortality and death in childbirth. Those two factors account for more of our modern long lifespan than anything else for in fact, persons of privilege have had long lives throughout the history of civilization, due to lack of exposure to infectious agents and superior nutrition brought about by wealth.
I submit to you without bothering to cite evidence that some of those infant mortalities were by design. It was one of the jobs of midwives. There was no contract or anything to implicate said midwife, but the practice occurred because sometimes it was necessary for a host of reasons. Naturally, this is just one more reason for the megalomaniacal fathers of the modern accredited medical school, John D. Rockefeller and Abraham Flexner, to demonize midwives. Speaking of these two, I venture that they have more to do with modern sense of American “morals” than any church or “divine authority” for they were masters of propaganda. Rockefellers of all persuasions funded feminists and suffragettes of all persuasions as well. Was this some sort of altruistic endeavor? I doubt it. Rather, it was all about enlarging the wealth and power of the Rockefellers by deflating wages as well as the hopes of ordinary people. Hopeless people are more easily administered. People saddled with unwanted children who they have trouble feeding are tremendously easy to administer.
Meanwhile, the possibility that a child would live to see one year of age was so remote in so many civilizations that the practice of Christening or naming a child tends to occur after the child has reached that first milestone. In other words, the child wasn’t quite a person until it was one year old; therefore, infanticide was common especially in times of resource scarcity relative to population. In other words, our human ancestors were better at math than most people are today.
Now on to my two abortions. The first pregnancy occurred during an important Summer for me in Washington D.C. Specifically, there was a NORML smoke-in, an ERA march, and a Native American protest. There was also, in my sphere, a fair amount of hallucinogenics. Somewhere along the way, I managed to lose my sandals and therefore took to the streets of Washington D.C. barefoot. Naturally, I managed to cut my foot and get a shard of colored glass embedded in it that was to remain there for the next 10 years whereupon I had it surgically removed.
Meanwhile, although I am uncertain as to which of the dashing and exciting young men of that month were the father, deep in my heart, I know. He was the guy who decided that not only was he to physically carry me on his back from place to place given my injured foot, but that this service entitled him to my body. Seemed like a good deal to me. In fact it was downright romantic for me. I don’t remember his name but yet I still think of him as the father. I was never to see him again. I’m not sure how it all ended. It was a wild time. I recall that I was coupled with yet another young man shortly after the father left who gave me a necklace which I managed to hold onto for over a decade and then lost.
In any case, at my age, with all my big plans ahead of me which at the time were to go to a top notch university and establish a brilliant career of some sort, clearly a child would not fit into either my life or my parents’ lives as I happened to be a minor. My parents barely took care of me! Therefore, the choice was easy and I had the abortion. My mother even drove me to the appointment. Although the exercise was clearly uncomfortable for her no words were spoken. This woman hadn’t even bothered to give me a sex education much less dating advice of any sort. She delegated all of these duties to my father who fulfilled them and then some in wholly dysfunctional fashion.
Three years after this abortion, I was living with a man who declared that he was “sterile”. It turns out not only had he lied but my pregnancy was deliberate—he tricked me! That alone was reason enough for me to abort. The fact that I had just barely started my career after just completing computer school was also a factor but by no means the overriding one. Trickery is not a good reason in my view to be a parent. This event causes me to sympathize all the more with men who are tricked into fatherhood. I find the whole notion of being tricked into parenthood morally repugnant. That’s right—even more repugnant than terminating a life without consciousness known as a fetus.
Several years later, I got my tubes tied.
Do I advocate abortions? Hardly. I simply can’t countenance the modern Pro-Life movement. I would like to ask some of the more strident opponents of abortion whether they would prefer infanticide–the traditional method–of eliminating unwanted children. Of course, I probably won’t. I understand that people get highly emotional about this issue. However, the notion that the state has any right to control a woman’s reproductive choices is a notion I find repugnant. Similarly, I find it repugnant when a women forces a man into fatherhood. I hope that these issues are solved to most people’s reasonable satisfaction in my lifetime. Realistically however I doubt that our politicians will ever relinquish such a handy hot button.