Abortion and Women’s Oppression

Abortion

         This article is not on why abortion is wrong or anything like that. This is a response to the pro-choice argument that abortion is women’s right, which is the most common argument I hear from the pro-choice side. First I want to point to something that will pervade this article: we live in a world of easy answers and quick fixes. Rather than solve a real problem we try to avoid responsibility and shove problems off to the side without digging into the complexity of a defective society. Abortion is an example of this but this is the fault of men more than women.

Empowering Women

               So first let’s talk about how abortion does not empower women. Abortion allows men to use women as sex objects. Think about it, a typical man does not want to wear a condom during sex because, common knowledge is, it doesn’t feel as good for him. So we have a pill that women have to take that messes with their natural bodily functions in order to avoid pregnancy. Then if that doesn’t work men leave a woman (or coerce a woman) to deal with the difficulties surrounding abortion. If the woman “decides” to have an abortion (in most cases it is not a woman’s free choice, it is the man’s decision being pushed on the woman), women are the ones left to deal with the physical pain as well as the mental pain of having an abortion. All the while the man is free to go sleep with other women. Abortion is a man’s way of getting what he wants, which is to avoid responsibility and force a woman to make a not-so-free choice concerning the issue of abortion.


           Of course if the baby is born where is the father? Probably no where to be seen. If we want to talk about women’s rights abortion allows a man to say, “why should I have to support that child, I wanted her to have an abortion and I shouldn’t have to support it because she chose not to have an abortion.” Another easy out for the man to avoid responsibility. If abortion was illegal we could have better leverage in enforcing child support payments from the man. Child support should be enforced more strictly, I would even argue to have it come directly off a persons paycheck.

Women’s Rights Overlooked

           Feminist activists who focus their attention on the right to an abortion are overlooking more important rights for women. What is referred to as “slut shaming” is a major reason abortion exists. A young girl doesn’t want to be thought of as a slut, but if she gets pregnant outside of a relationship or marriage, she will be seen as a slut. The solution? Terminate the pregnancy…. You see how that really misses the point right? Instead of dealing with the root of the problem, we force women to consider a horrible option that no one wants to have to be in that situation. The root cause of slut shaming is not pregnancy, the root is a sexist double standard where men can sleep around and women can’t. Let’s focus on the root, because abortion doesn’t solve anything. To me calling abortion a “choice” is like taking away a kids toys and letting him choose between a rock and a stick to play with. It’s like we say to women, “You don’t get to make real decisions but you get to make this huge, awful decision that no one else wants to make… Oh and also you get to vote! But your only options are a woman who is possibly a federal criminal or a psychopath with an affinity for building walls.” Woo…

            Women who are single and keep their babies are heroes. However, on either side of this debate, we don’t treat them like heroes. We undervalue the courage it takes to go through with a pregnancy in a tough situation and rather than celebrate a brave Mom, we condemn her or celebrate her “choosing” to abort. If that is what we deem “equality” then we are doomed.

              I also want to add quickly that women should get longer maternity leaves. Those first three years are SO important in child development. Women (and men) deserve the right to be with their kids in those crucial years. We ask people to go back to work far to early and then charge them more than they get paid for child care, which is  done by complete strangers. If you can’t afford child care, the women is often forced to “choose” between losing her job to stay at home or… nothing because there is no choice!


The Best Answer to a Complicated Problem

           Adoption is the best answer. We need to become a society that embraces adoption as a wonderful thing. Adoption needs more publicity, money, support and people involved. Adoption is a win-win. In a best case scenario, a Mom who can’t keep a child gets to give it to someone who can’t have a child. Pro-life people need to be known as pro-adoption people since this is a wonderful beautiful thing that no one is talking about enough. 

          I’d like to close by saying abortion is a chauvinistic tool used to oppress women giving a false impression of female empowerment. I hope you are able to see this issue from a new angle. I hope  you think more deeply about the underlying causes of abortion. I hope you don’t buy into simplistic ideas of what this issue is about. Thanks for reading!

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