Thursday, January 27, 2011

Women's responsibility

“You will see me on the news.” Stella* said this with complete seriousness, the gravity of her statement not hitting me at once.

“What do you mean?” I asked cautiously.

“I’ll throw myself down the stairs. I’ll do what it takes. I need to get rid of this baby.”

Stella presented at my clinic at 28 weeks in her pregnancy. She had no insurance, had become pregnant as a result of rape, and because she had still been getting her periods until about one month prior, had no idea that she was past the legal abortion limit in Pennsylvania.

Doesn't Stella know that she could cause herself serious injury by doing this?

Of course she does.

If she wants to get rid of the pregnancy, why not wait 10 weeks? It'll be gone by itself.

She seems to be okay with killing herself and her unborn child, but will not consider placing the baby up for adoption.

This is called being irrational.

We do not need to based public policy decisions on irrational desires.

Especially when another human being-- in this case a fetus-- will have to suffer and die for the sake of another. But what do feminists care? If another human being has to suffer and die for the sake of preserving female autonomy, tough luck, baby.

Nobody wants to say it so I will: although the woman in question is deserving of all manner of compassion, she is responsible for her own fate. It doesn't mean she "deserved" to die. It means that you are responsible for the predictable and likely consequences of your actions.

And her lack of responsibility should not be the basis for social policy.