Sunday, January 22, 2006

Today is Roe v. Wade Day

TN Guerilla Women has some thoughts and suggestions.
On a cold November day in 1971, my Mother put me on a plane to fly to New York City to get a safe, legal abortion in one of two states in which this vital health service was legal at that time. I realize that I was fortunate in that my Mother had the resources at her disposal to take me there. I was 19 years old. I was in no way ready to start my family.

She paid dearly for my reproductive freedom. The next day, her husband, infuriated that she had done this, shot her six times and killed her.

[...] Memories of Mother
For those who support a woman's right to privacy and her right to control her own body: this week is going to be crucial to hanging on to what's left of those rights. Call your senators (and everyone else's for that matter) and do whatever else you can to oppose Alito. Don't let the small group of religious fanatics who are trying to take over our government turn back the clock on Roe v. Wade.

If, otoh, you're a part of the forced childbirth lobby: please use this occasion to reflect on why abortions happen and realize that making them illegal isn't going to make them go away. They'll still happen, but without any pre-abortion counseling (which, btw, can sometimes help a woman decide not to have an abortion) and without the proper medical care. The best way to prevent abortion is with education. The worst way is with anti-woman legistation that will only send our mothers, daughters, sisters, wives and friends to other countries (if they can afford to travel) and dark alleys (if they're poor) -- and into the arms of butchers -- for abortions that many of them are going to have either way.

Update: great link from Sandy. Way to respect all life, W. You're doing a heck of a job, Bushie.


sandy said...

Here is the President's Proclamation on the National Sanctity of Life Day with photos Presidential Proclamation. It depicts the President's view on life very well.

Mello said...


You say: "The best way to prevent abortion is with education." Is there a statistic on this, or some reference that you can point me to? It's just something I've been thinking about lately, especially since I read this article last week about Indian female infanticide being highest among the educated.

alice said...

Mello, I don't have any statistics at the ready, but I'm sure they're around. It just makes sense. Teaching people how to avoid pregnancy while encouraging them to postpone sex until it is a heathy choice for them is clearly a better approach than keeping them ignorant while telling them not to have sex. In our culture, kids are bombarded with sex from an early age, and curiousity is a natural response. Since we can't turn off the media, if we want our kids to avoid disease and unwanted pregnancy, they're going to have to be armed with information -- how to postpone sex, how to have safe sex, and what will be the consequences of unprotected sex.

A sincere effort to end abortion would not involve making abortions illegal (which only makes them less visible), but would rather seek to eliminate the need for abortions by reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies.

Sorry for the lack of charts and graphs. I had a really busy weekend, and today has been a Monday, all day long. :-P

Mello said...

Well, I can see your point, but am not convinced of it. What about the article I cited above, where the highest educated people are clearly making the worst decision? (whether we agree on abortion or not, I would think that we would agree that a tendancy to abort on the basis of gender is a bad decision).

glen said...

When has a conservative ever endorsed sex education? Not likely to happen.

best regards

alice said...

Mello, I think the article you referenced reflects three things: 1) the Indian government's pressure on people to limit the size of their families, which, coupled with 2) the greater value placed on male children in the culture, leads people to do what they can to have boys instead of girls. And 3) since greater education allows for more access to prenatal medicine, along with the financial means for medical procedures like ultrasounds and abortions, those people are the ones most commonly found practicing female infanticide. Or, to put it more simply: it's a cultural thing.

And yes, I agree that it is horrible.

alice said...

Glen, plenty of conservatives have endorsed sex education. It's just the current crop of pseudo-conservatives that are currently running the show who tend to be against sex education. And their opposition probably has more to do with trying to please the religious fanatics in their base than it does with a reasoned, well-thought position...

chad edwards said...

I agree with Alice. I doubt that Libertarians, for example, would have any problem with sex ed as long as it was taught in a privatized school.