The Right To Choose: An Evolution? A Revolution?

 

SCENARIO #1 ~ Most intelligent, compassionate folks would have no problem in agreeing that women must have the right to choose… especially when [1] problem pregnancies can involve literal life or death issues for moms-to-be and/or their babies and [2] conceptions can result from non-consensual acts and/or too closely related genetic mergers. Under such tragic, emotionally devastating circumstances, there must be ZERO tolerance for inept, incompetent, ignorant, opportunistic politicians attempting to intrude into what should be the sacrosanct, private, doctor / patient relationship. However…

SCENARIO #2 ~ Even the most enlightened and empathetic of us do start to feel qualms… especially when many other sought-after abortions can be tantamount to an ill-conceived, alternative form of birth control. While there’s no “normal” adult alive who hasn’t experienced that biochemically induced state of mindlessness… been prodded by overactive glands that are egging on recklessness… still one wonders… why some guys find it so hard to muster up a bit of self-control? If a couple cannot even prepare to prevent parenthood… i.e, go on a condom run… just how prepared will they be… oh… say… nine months later? Will their unplanned, unwanted children be unloved and undisciplined? What kind of grown-ups will they become? Will they even be grown-ups in every sense of that hyphenated word? Will they even be able to act kind?

CLEARLY… Scenario #2 is less clear-cut. While… under current conditions… a woman confronted by such a problem pregnancy still must be able to assert her right to choose… CLEARLY… the man could’ve done much more to prevent lighting that 9-month time-bomb fuse and… CLEARLY… humankind can and must do better in the future. And the sooner the better.

Growing up involves far more than gender-specific endocrine glands. Our brains must rule over our bodies and not vice versa. OK, I can already, almost hear the naysayers. “Such an attitudinal shift would likely take multiple generations to complete”… you scoff? “A Herculean Task”… you tsk-tsk?

Even though those are valid points, this does not make them excuses for our not trying. Why can’t we bravely usher in a new era of lifelong, no-nonsense, age-appropriate sex education? We need a Sexual Prime Directive where all biological adults wind up fully understanding that [1] sex makes babies and [2] if one desires the former but not the latter, then consistent usage of reliable birth control becomes a nonnegotiable! For those who find themselves saying, “Well duh… who didn’t know that?” go to the head of the class.

Governments would be both wise and money ahead… were contraception not only readily available but also affordable, perhaps, even totally free of charge! When compared to national welfare programs designed to financially assist impoverished moms and dads, government subsidized birth control might even be deemed a bargain!

To those quick to point out that vending machines loaded with “The Pill” and prophylactics could only encourage rampant promiscuity and result in a raging STD pandemic… I now ask… minus the protection… is that not what we’ve already got?

While such a retort may sound like defeatism, there is some pragmatism in the mix, too. Lest we forget, barrier methods of contraception provide barriers to disease, too. Additionally, might it even be argued that a more responsible, less repressed society would “breed” fewer perverts and predators? Might there even be a bit of truth to / a practical application of that Sixties era hippie mantra, “Make Love Not War”? Given a choice between a worldwide orgy and a worldwide nuclear war, which would you consider the lesser of two evils?

While portions of that above paragraph do sound, perhaps, a tad over the top, there is an undercurrent of truth, too.

Naturally, living life in moderation is the phrase that really pays. And more to the point… both love and respect must factor prominently into the big picture.

If we can establish a society where unprotected sex is virtually unheard of, then, with very few exceptions, only those who want babies will be procreating. Beyond that…

Governments would be both wise and money ahead, too… in ensuring that raising children would also become far more affordable. That… in itself… could help substantially reduce the demand for abortion… i.e., when fretting, prospective parents would no longer ditto agreement to this all too common, forlorn sentiment…

“Honey, we simply cannot afford another mouth to feed.”

Working towards that new beginning, each nation would need to establish a stable economy where even the entry level, full time workers would be earning a living wage… enjoying a pay level that’d even allow either the new mommy or daddy to become a stay-at-home parent until their child becomes a preschooler / kindergartner. Maybe even beyond that point?

Of course, even an improved society could never, fully liberate itself of unplanned pregnancies. True, it’s far too easy for me… a man who can never experience pregnancy… who has never even fathered any children… to say this… but maybe… just maybe my proposed, futuristic, attitudinal shift towards unequivocal male and female sexual responsibility could be inclusive of a woman’s new, enhanced right to choose… i.e., to choose going the adoption route rather than opt-in to abortion?

Do all of these changes sound too idealistic to ever become reality? Should I re-categorize this post as fiction? Let me know what you’re thinking and feeling in the comment section below…

 

 

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How To Abort Abortion?

 

Preface… I encourage all who read this blog, to not jump to any hasty conclusions. The prolife vs. prochoice debate oft involves complex discussions featuring, at the very least, one unexpected twist and turn.

A few evenings ago my phone rang. I found myself talking to a Right To Life fundraiser trying to hit me up for $100. Upon informing her that, due to injuries, I hadn’t worked in eight years… that my meager savings would likely dry up long before I die… what ensued next was her obviously heavily scripted, paint by the numbers, commiseration.

I felt rather taken aback. I’d have expected something a bit less automaton-like from someone who is, after all, prolife.

So insensitive and driven was she, that she began haggling… eventually going as low as $10. Even that sawbuck was too much to ask of me and I told her so. Now, not being one who’d create a problem without offering up at least one viable solution, I recommended that she phone up / hit up wealthy Republicans.

I mean… they’re purportedly prolife, right? And think about the cost effectiveness angle… rather than taking days and weeks, perhaps, even months to dial up tens of thousands of poor people, in less than an hour she could’ve called a dozen of America’s wealthiest… and likely would’ve vastly exceeded her overall monetary goal.

Well, I guess I had struck a raw nerve… in a huff and sans nary a goodnight, she had hung up on me.

While my tale of being injured and unemployed was/is legit… my actual rationale for not contributing to her cause boils down to this…

We cannot end abortion merely by legislating abortionists out of business. Were we to criminalize the procedure, it’d result in something far worse… e.g., drive women back to the criminal, rusty wire coat hanger wielding, back alley butchers.

To truly end abortion involves decreasing the demand. We must prioritize our fundraising efforts to focus upon the following.

Counsel legal adults to stop being in denial of their libidos… encourage them to fess up / own up / grow up… develop mature mental attitudes more in synch with their physically grown up bodies.

As for minors, the school taught “abstinence only” programs are ludicrous. True, it’d be far better for kids to wait until they’re emotionally and financially stable. But it’s unrealistic to expect everyone to wait (sometimes for nearly a decade) until after high school graduation.

We must make readily available (when possible, OTC) affordable, reliable birth control. Couples must then utilize this, if you’ll excuse the wordplay, religiously. The most common male method, in particular, would go a long way towards also preventing the spread of HIV/STDs.

Since no contraceptive method (aside from abstinence) is 100%, adoption should become the wildly popular “New Plan B”. We need to do whatever it takes to cut through the legal red tape… to fast-track securing loving homes for any unwanted children… to not exclude wannabe single parents, either… be they straight or LGBT individuals.

We need to provide stringent, psychological counseling to the predators whose wretchedly wrong MO involves nonconsensual and consanguineous attacks. Institutionalize and only release them back into society when shrinks are reasonably sure their patients can behave in a civilized manner.

Minimum wage must become a living wage, inclusive of meeting all the costs of raising children from birth to age of majority. Since two income families would no longer be necessary… either the mom or dad would be free to become a stay-at-home, nurturing parent.

Were we to achieve all the above, then the only legitimate reason anyone would ever seek abortion would be to save the life of the mother. *

True, all I suggest cannot be implemented overnight and any Supreme Court reversal of Roe vs. Wade, prior to the enlightenment of our society, could wreck untold, emotional havoc and devastating economic hardship. Until the day every biological adult, both young and old, grows / wises up, abortion, regrettably, will need to remain the law of the land.

What a pity that in the forty+ years abortion has been legal, our society has failed, miserably, at concurrently attempting to implement such common sense notions.

I mean, just because abortion suppliers could do so legally did not mean we could not have tried to reduce the demand.

 

*08/23/16 12:36 p.m. ADDENDUM: I neglected to mention that if ultrasound and other prenatal tests indicate severe birth defects, that this, too, would be a valid reason for abortion.