Sunday, July 03, 2011

Dear Pro-Choice Movement: Don't Insult Women's Intelligence

Abortion Gang Member KushieIsMoon writes about the issue of pregnancy loss (both natural and induced) and how women view their fetuses.

Legally, fetuses are not infants, are not considered persons, and thus, having an abortion is not murder. But we must remember, the personal is different from the legal. Pregnancy is different for every single woman- and one woman may experience multiple pregnancies in very different ways. A woman may consider her fetus to be ababy, or already a person, because she plans to carry to term. Another woman may consider her fetus to be a baby even though she is planning to have an abortion. Those feelings and beliefs are normal, valid, and should be perfectly acceptable.

Using the term “baby” doesn’t hurt the pro-choice position at all. If a woman believes that abortion is the best option for her baby, then we should support her in her choice.** It does us no good to get into a battle over the word (the same applies if she wants to carry her fetus to term).

Those feelings and beliefs are normal, valid and should be perfectly acceptable, she says.

Except feelings do not determine what a fetus is.

Have the courage of your convictions. Either affirm is a fetus is a human being, or don't.

But don't start acting like a fetus is a human being in one scenario, but not in another, based on what a woman believes a fetus to be.

That's very patronizing.

It suggests that women are not capable of handling the truth. It's reminiscent of the way adults act like Santa exists at Christmas time, when he doesn't, just to make children happy.

That's well and good for little kids.

If fetuses are not human beings, then why not tell the woman that her fetus is not a human being, so that her grief will not be so intense? I.E. Hey listen, the ten-week fetus you lost to abortion? It wasn't even sentient. Don't even worry about it. You'll get pregnant again. And the next time will be when you're able to parent.

Oh wait, is it because you don't want to have that argument? Is it because telling a woman what to think of her pregnancy or her fetus would contradict your movement's ideology?

Would it mean that the woman's subjective judgement is not the be-all and end-all of the prochoice ideology, and that facts about human development and the nature of the fetus actually do matter, contrary to the movement's assertions for the last several decades?

You cannot allow women to be the arbiters of what a fetus is, and then treat them as intelligent beings. We know that subjective judgements don't determine the nature of a thing. Letting a woman's grief determine the nature of a fetus is allowing her intelligence to be subject to her feelings. It plays into the stereotype of women being so emotional by nature that they can't think straight and face reality-based facts.

It's a two-faced stance.

And to think women won't see through that is to treat them as stupid.

Kushie says it does the pro-choice no good to fight over the word "baby". Maybe that's the whole problem, though. The pro-choice movement does not have the guts to tell women either 1) that fetuses are not babies, therefore, grieving over a fetus like it's a baby is not warranted or 2)that abortion actually does kill a baby.

You can't have it both ways, pro-choice movement. Make up your mind and be upfront with women.