Monday, February 1, 2016

Abortion: The Good and Bad News

Women's health is a touchy subject and abortion is downright radioactive. The equating of the two is a strained comparison, as women's health encompasses much more than just abortion. Breast and cervical cancers, rape, suicide, and many other factors constitute larger, more lethal factors.

Breast cancer rates by country

Nevertheless, abortion stands out as the primary concern because of its controversial nature. Radicals on both sides of the issue demonize the motives of their rivals. Neither side wants to listen to the other's argument because both have good points and that might mean having to consider the possibility of changing one's mind.

The two women who were central to the SCOTUS decisions that initiated unlimited legalization of abortion in the 1970s have since expressed their dismay at the result. Norma McCorvey (Jane Roe of Roe v Wade) is now a pro-life activist, arguing that she had been used by the pro-abortion movement to forward their agenda because of her desperate financial circumstances. Sandra Cano (Mary Doe of Doe v Bolton), who has since passed away, filed an unsuccessful appeal all the way to SCOTUS saying she was unaware the case had been filed on her behalf and if she had been aware she would not have supported the litigation. SCOTUS refused to hear the case.

The pro-life movement uses these examples to show that the abortion lobby has used nefarious methods to forward their agenda. Pro-life radicals have resorted to assault, arson, kidnapping, bombings and even murder. It seems both sides have their fringe activists willing to resort to any and all methods to beat the opposition.

Any politico-social issue is going to be a hot topic whenever it comes up. The good news about the abortion issue is that abortions worldwide are on the decline, mainly because of improved sex education and more widespread use of contraceptive. Teen birth and abortion rates are on the decline.

The bad news is the controversy continues to divide the country into opposing camps, which leaks over into personal lives. And when faced with an unwanted pregnancy, that abstract argument about abortion becomes a very real crisis to the girl or woman involved. The after-effects of abortion can be traumatic for some, leading to years of regret and therapy. The responsibility of raising the child of an unwanted pregnancy can affect not just the mother but the child as well.

It is a complicated and vexing problem. Whichever side you come down on, you have to ask yourself this: is my conscience clear? Have I made an informed decision or have I allowed myself to be manipulated?

We must all live with our decisions in life. Make sure yours is made properly.