Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Abortion, Is There a Middle Ground? An Honest Opinion From a Texas Liberal

"Pro-life is an extremist position, not a moral position. We should compromise and work to reduce abortions. Where's the compromise between life and death - and why work to reduce the number of them occurring if there's nothing wrong with them?" - Rush Limbaugh

         It pains me greatly to quote Rush Limbaugh; however, on this occasion, the man makes a decent point. I think, in fact, he makes a very good point: Abortion is not a simple issue, and there is no real right or wrong answer to the problem. There are so many factors to consider that it becomes difficult to come to a solid stance, in the first place. Further, he hints that the Pro-Life views on abortion are an extremist position. Pro-Life people will argue for no abortions at all, and the most ardent Pro-Choice people will argue for no restrictions, at all. Should it be banned? Should it be completely unregulated? Neither, is a practical option. Who would argue that a woman should have to raise the child of a rapist, molester, or that she should choose to die, rather than having an abortion that would save her life? On the opposite side of the aisle, who would argue that it is OK to terminate a pregnancy that is of no harm to the mother, comes from a consensual interaction, or that is at a stage to where the child could survive outside of the womb? Why do men that argue for a more balanced approach to abortion always get tagged as Anti-Woman?
          Why is it that men, only accounting for consensual interactions, have no choice in a such a life changing matter? The child would not exist without their contribution. They are just as invested in the mistake, if it was a mistake at all, as the women are. How are we going to provide for a baby when we still live with our parents? How can we support a child with the jobs we have? Am I going to have to leave school? Will the mother want to keep the child? How will if affect us mentally, if she gets an abortion? Would the mother be willing to raise the child together, or would she prefer that I pay child support? Would she be willing to relinquish custody to me? Why is that responsible men are demonized? We have a drive to procreate, perhaps stronger, just as women do. There should be a point somewhere early on in the process where we are allowed to make a decision for ourselves, and are able to offer our assistance, before our progeny is simply terminated. This is a difficult thing to talk about, i do understand, but like the other topics I have touched on before, this discussion has to be had. Hopefully, it won't get any nastier that it already has.
         As I attempt to walk a fine line between a Pro-Life asshole and a Pro-Choice fanatic, I argue that the father of the child should have a choice in the matter; as well, and if the parents are under age, the parents' families should have the choice in the matter. Children are not equipped to deal with a situation of this magnitude on their own. This is the future of someone's family that hangs in the balance, and no matter what any woman says, this type of decision is just as important for the man as it is the woman. Men of all stripes have forced themselves to set their ambitions aside when it comes to raising a family. To most able bodied  men, the thought of having a child may be a little unnerving at first, but in the end, the child comes to be the most important part of their lives. That child is their future. If the whole thing is controlled entirely by the woman, the man is never given a chance to make his stance known, and likely, if he were to be included in the very beginning, it is likely that the first words out of his mouth to the woman carrying his child would be, "What do you want to do?" Men are just not always given that option. Real men are not quite as foolhardy as the American media makes us out to be, and the majority of the time, if we are treated with respect, we will do anything to ensure that our family is taken care off. This is, to the point that we will even deprive ourselves in order to provide for the rest of the family, especially the woman that has given us, or is giving us, children.

         So, when does life begin? Religious persons all makes and models are likely to argue that life begins at the moment of conception. While others, the most extreme of the Pro-Choice people, would argue that life begins much later. They come up with this concept of 'Personhood' in their effort to dehumanize the child, so their conscience is more able to deal with the internal pain. If one approaches the issue from the perspective of a Buddhist and Celtic Spiritualist, both of the arguments are wrong. To assume that we have any real minuscule clue about just when life begins is arrogant and presumptuous on our part, but as this is an important part of the discussion, a declaration will be made here. Life, to someone of my type, is not something that has a beginning or an ending. Life is perpetual, moving in a constant regenerative cycle that humans beings, presently, have absolutely no control over. Life is more than just the physical body we inhabit. The energy that flows through our bodies is part of what gives us life, as well. This energy is actually who we really are. Our body is, ultimately, nothing more than a vessel of earth and water. To answer the question a little bit more scientifically, our bodies house a great deal of potential energy. That energy that is keeping our bodies running, never dissipates, it merely changes form. Thus, logically, the energy that entered our bodies in the womb existed before our bodies did and will exist long after our bodies have returned to the earth.
         Where that energy then comes from and where it goes, is also a controversial issue. Many people would argue that heaven and hell are the origins and resting places of that energy. If those places were not imaginations of the human mind, it would actually line up with the theory on the issue of energy. However, they are. What is not an imagination of the human mind is the fact that this planet is alive. It reacts to being damaged, it provides food for its inhabitants, and it replenishes it self. It has just as much of a right to exist as we do, and our energy would not exist without it. Humble thanks, Mother Gaia. So, what does this say about what abortion is? If all life exists pre-womb and never actually dies, but rather, gets recycled by the planet that gave us all life, what does this really mean? It means that abortion, to the delight of all the Pro-Life supporters, is no more different than Infanticide.

         So, should abortion be illegal? Not at all. Now, does this mean that abortion should be legal? Not in the slightest. Allow me to explain. If it should not be illegal, which means no wiggle room for emergencies, and if it should not be legal, which would give women free reign, what should it be then? It should be, just like a whole lot of things in this country, decriminalized. This essentially means that a balance must be found between the Pro-Life lobby and the Pro-Choice lobby. To understand how that balance might work, it is necessary to briefly review a few other concepts. First, the Right to Privacy. This, of course, is assuming that we actually have the right to privacy, which is a whole different post, all together, but such a post will be forthcoming. A woman should not have to worry about the government, at any level, telling her what to do with her life, her personal affairs, and definitely not her body. Now, being a fair man, how should I react to that? First, I will be one of the first to tell you that I honor my right to privacy, and I will fight to prevent any of those things from happening to me. It follows that if I don't want the government telling me what do on these  issues, then I must also fight to keep them from doing it to women. What this basically means is that this issue is a private one, to dealt with by the woman, the man, and their extended families. This also means that the government, ultimately, has no legal right to legislate on this issue.  

Note: The this video has very graphic images in it, and might be difficult to watch. Use discretion when allowing your children to watch this video. If you have a weak stomach or a sensitive mind, do not watch it. If you watch it anyway, despite my written warning, don't come complaining to me about it, and certainly don't report it. I'll just repost the article under a different title every single time you do it.

         Second, abortion is one of the oldest practiced forms of contraception in the entirety of human history. Women used it as a weapon to protect not just themselves and their family from their enemies, natural or man made, but they also used it to protect a child from being raised in a potentially deadly environment. Whether the justification was starvation, an enemy raid, or bad weather, the practice has been used by woman for a very long time. Advanced societies of the past have also practiced abortion, and their methods improved gradually over time. Fast forward to the present day. The methods of contraception now available to women are boundless. They can take a shot, they can take a regimen of pills, they can have their cervix closed with a simple lightly invasive surgery, they can make their partners pull out or use condoms, or they can refrain from having sex until they are able take advantage of more child appropriate circumstances and living conditions. To go all the way to right, without the religious interjections, there is also the option of temporary sterilization. The procedures now are much more safe, and most can be reversed or will ware off after a certain period of time. This is essentially what the shot mentioned earlier does. To be fair, the process exists for men too, and they would have to be held to the same standard. This option is ridiculous. It's a major civil liberties violation, even if a persons signs a waiver approving the procedure, but I am just doing my best to give you all of the information that I can.

         What this essentially means is that while abortion has been used as a form of contraception in our not so distant past, it is not entirely necessary anymore. There are, however, a few reasons why it is still necessary. As mentioned earlier, a women should not have to raise a rape baby, a women should not have to raise a baby born of incest, and a little girl should not have to raise a baby that was conceived of molestation. Third, going back to the man's role in the whole affair, the 'The My Body, My Choice," campaign is a very very large form of reverse sexism. Yes, it is your body, and yes, you have a right to control everything that goes on in your body. However, a child is not created by the body of a single person. The human race is not asexual. Opposing genders have to come together and mate, use a surrogate, which puts a third person into the mix, or use in vitro fertilization. Technology has yet to changed that constant, so a child will always have to be made by the coming together of a male and a female. A man's seed must enter a woman at her most fertile time, find an egg, and successfully penetrate the outer membrane of the egg before the physical body of the lifeform can take shape. This means that part of the man is now inside the woman, helping to give this life a physical form. This also means that the man has a right to that child, whether the woman wants it or not, with the previously mentioned circumstances being the only things that can supersede that reality.

        How much control should the man have, then? Well, first of all the man should never have any solitary control over the situation, but neither should the woman. The decision to get an abortion, under normal circumstances, should be made by both the mother and the father, no matter how little they now each other, no matter how much they hate each other, and no matter their religious or philosophical views on the subject. If the woman was a victim of any of the previously mentioned circumstances, the decision is hers, and hers, alone. If either one or both of the parents of the child is a minor, the decision should be made by their families. Fear and irresponsibility are not sufficient excuses for either the man or the woman. Life happens, and you have to deal with it. This does not mean that it should be illegal, though. There are genuinely fair reasons, as has been noted, why a woman should not be restricted from getting an abortion. Further, whether abortion is legal, illegal, or decriminalized, if the couple is to consider abortion, they need to have a safe and easily accessible option available to prevent the use of any extreme measures that will run the risk of putting the mother's life in danger, as well. Organizations that handle the abortion, should also be able to inform the couple of all of their non-abortion options, as well.
        To bring this to a quick end, a well informed decision is the best decision the couple, whichever way they go, could ever possibly make. The argument is simple. Abortion is not a cure for fear or irresponsibility, and the father of the child deserves the right to be a part of the decision making process, too. This is a controversial topic, and this post  is hardly as in-depth as it could be. If this is not middle of the road enough for some people, or it is too middle of the road for other people, they can feel free to offer another option that respects the rights of both the man and the woman. Further, if you are willing to manage the subsequent bar brawl, feel free to bring the rights of the child into the discussion. This is, ultimately, just the opinion of a Texas Liberal, who is well versed in the principles of fairness and equality. If this argument were to delve into the rights of the child; though, a book might end up getting published, so I'll leave it at this.

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