August 04, 2014

Dropping Pro-Choice? Abortion opponents don't understand the role reproductive freedom plays in women's health

Again and again, the role of maternity is both venerated and downplayed among conservative pundits.

On the one hand, the idea of motherhood is lauded--safe and sanctified within the bounds of matrimony, the mother is queen.

On the other, though, they neglect, again and again, to make the connection between women's health and pregnancy. So again, I'll make it for them.

Pregnancy is difficult. Pregnancy is dangerous. Pregnancy is potentially deadly. Pregnancy requires significant sacrifices, physically, mentally, emotionally, financially. It requires a commitment of epic proportions.

And yet, they still say things like this:
They can’t talk plainly of abortion because it’s such a visceral issue. So they lie about “women’s health” instead. If they cared about women’s health, however, they’d counsel young women against premarital sex due to its accompanying health risks, as well as against abortion, which kills a child and has profoundly negative physical and emotional consequences for the mother. Whatever they call it, it’s not truth in advertising.
In addition to skewing the perception of abortion--which while it does affect some negatively, often doesn't have any affect at all--they are neglecting again to address all of the complicated concepts of maternity.

It's not just young single women sleeping around that don't want to be pregnant.

It's women like me, who want to have a life again after their children are grown. It's women who aren't ready for children and just want to enjoy being married for a little longer. It's women who have had babies and were told that having another could kill them.

These are all examples of women who also need full reproductive freedom--just in case. It's not as cut and dried as the "Keep your legs shut" crowd would like for us to belief.

This is, of course, over and above the fact that they scream personal accountability at a woman, while simultaneously not mentioning it with regards to the young man that's having sex with her. Apparently, she's impregnating herself.

In these attitudes, we see vestiges of by-gone times, when woman was tied to man, when ensuring paternity was critical, when inheritance was the male's way of extending his lifetime beyond mortal limits.

Reproductive health is women's health. It is her body, her mind, that will bear the burdens of maternity. It is her body that will bend and possibly break.

Reproduction is a critical area of women's health, and anyone that continues to deny that is an absolute moron.

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