An argument I hear a lot from pro-choice people who want to make their argument seem more appealing to the other side is this: “No one here is pro-abortion! We just want the choice to be available in case it’s needed.” Well, guess what? Someone here is pro-abortion, and it’s me.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t believe abortion should be forced on anyone, ever. I just happen to actually mean it when I say I’m pro-choice. Because really, how many times have you heard someone say, “I’m pro-choice …” and then continue on to say something like this:
- “I’m pro-choice, but she’s already had an abortion twice before. You’d think she’d have figured things out by now.”
- “I’m pro-choice, but why would you ever need an abortion that late in your pregnancy? Get your lazy ass to the doctor’s on time.”
- “I’m pro-choice, but it’s a big decision and I’m worried some people are making it too lightly.”
- “I’m pro-choice, but people need to learn how to take the proper precautions before having sex.”
- “I’m pro-choice, but I wish you wouldn’t talk about your abortion like it was no big deal to you.”
- “I’m pro-choice, but women shouldn’t be using abortions as birth control.”
To me all of these sound like, “I’m pro-choice, but I absolutely reserve the right to judge your choice if it doesn’t line up with the one I would have made in your place.” Or maybe, “I’m pro-choice, but only if I get to make the choice for you.” Or more succinctly still, “I’m pro-choice, but not for sluts.”
Personally, I’m pro-abortion the same way I’m pro-appendectomy and pro-colonoscopy. It’s a necessary medical procedure that should be available to whoever needs it, not something that should come with a whole pile of shame-y strings attached. Not “you can have this abortion, but only with my disapproval”. Not “you can have this abortion as long as you feel bad about it afterwards”.
I’m pro-abortion because even in the shrinkingly few places where abortions are accessible, reproductive rights are protected on the backs of those who most need access to them. Every time we act as if abortions are only a last resort for the desperate and the sloppy, we make it that much harder for someone to walk through the clinic doors. Every time we make concessions to anti-choicers on when you can have an abortion or what kinds of invasive procedures you have to submit to first, we tell the people who need our support that they can’t have it. Every time we say, “In an ideal world, there would be no abortion,” we make the very real and not so ideal world a slightly harder place for those individuals to live in.
Well, sorry, no. I am pro-choice, no contradictory clauses necessary. I trust people to make the right decisions for their own bodies. And I, for one, am unabashedly pro-abortion.