Our Bodies, Our Choice

reproductive choice

 

I came across this meme on facebook. I suppose it’s a bit graphic, but I understand the sentiment. It’s the 21st century. By now women should not need to fight to have control of their own bodies. We should be enlightened enough by this point to understand that other people cannot and should not have any say over another person’s body. Unfortunately that’s not the case. Many people treat their own children like objects, or property, rather than people. Some people still treat their spouses in a similar fashion. Worse yet, a woman’s right to control her own body isn’t even seen as a right. In many places, rape is still seen as an acceptable means to ensure that a woman remains submissive. Here in the US, there are still schools, parents, teachers, and many others who will gloss over, or even cover up a rape case, to ensure the success of a well connected or promising male student. We even go so far as to write and pass laws that restrict a woman’s control over her own body.

While I was looking over the thread under this picture, I came across a comment that rubbed me a bit wrong:

‘I am not for abortion, yet I am not for stopping a woman from making that choice. However let’s not make it as if it should be an easy choice for a woman to make. It should not also be a means of birth control. Some women need to be more responsible with the body they have been given. Make better choices when it comes to who you sleep with. If you don’t want to get pregnant, don’t have unprotected sex, especially if you don’t have the means to raise a child. There should never be the attitude of, “I can just get an abortion.”‘

The use of the phrase need to, and the word should, really got my goat. Whether or not someone else acts irresponsibly is not his concern. The choices that someone else makes are not his concern. Until someone actually invades his personal space, whatever that someone does is not his business.

What I find so ironic is the argument so many try to pose to say that this is their business. Many claim that irresponsible women who get pregnant often end up using public funds to help out with their bills, which involves everyone. First off, everyone pays taxes, even the people who end up taking a little back. Second, if a woman decides to get an abortion, the cost would be a drop in the bucket compared to what it would cost to raise a child. Third, until the public actually has a say in how public funds are truly spent, it doesn’t actually involve everyone.

What really bothers me is how people never take the feelings and concerns of the women into consideration in these situations. Anyone who is against abortion assumes that a woman who considers it is a cold blooded murderer. None of them take the circumstances of her life, the condition of the fetus, the anguish the decision has caused her, or anything else into consideration. The worst part is, these people force their idea of morality onto others, then abandon the people they’ve dominated once they do. When these women do not have the means, motive, or opportunities to properly care for (a) child(ren) who have been unwillingly forced onto them, the people who did the forcing are nowhere around to help out.

All of these issues can be easily resolved by realizing what I mentioned in the first paragraph; we are an enlightened 21st century society. At this point in our social evolution we should know our own social boundaries. Setting laws that inhibit people from utilizing their own bodies is an archaic, uncivilized, and ridiculous practice. Telling others what to do, what they should do, how to live their lives, or anything else that effects another person is a practice that does not belong in an enlightened and civilized society. At this point we need to decide, are we really an enlightened 21st century society, or are we still living in an archaic past that is ruled by notions of relative morality that tell us to invade each other’s personal space on a regular basis?

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