For the record, I don't need to watch little films about aborted fetuses, or about abortion doctors who changed their own stances after years performing abortions. Neither do I need analogies between a woman's right to have access to safe abortions and a man's right to rape a woman. (Really?) I also don't need education on the "rhetoric" used by the pro-choice movement. My mom was a strong anti-abortion activist, and I held my own very one-sided anti-choice views for a number of years. I even attended Right to Life conferences! I guess what I'm getting at is that my relatives are not "teaching" me anything that I wasn't
It's not like I just sat down one day and decided that I love abortions or that there is anything easy about choosing to have one. However, through expanding my exposure to those with other worldviews at college, (Yes, Santorum is right. College is evil!) and through experiencing the pregnancies and births of my own children, I have come to realize that 1.) not everyone holds the same view on abortion that I do and 2.) my subjective views on abortion do not give me the right to make personal healthcare decisions for other women.
What absolutely prevents me from respecting the pro-life movement is the parallel campaign against sex education and access to contraceptives. Looking at it from the point of view that abortion is murder, these simultaneous stances make no sense. Shouldn't those opposing abortion throw everything they have into reducing the need for them?
I'm halfway through the eye-opening book The Purity Myth, which is about America's obsession with virginity and the stifling weight hefted onto the shoulders of women and girls in this country to be "sexually pure" until marriage. After I finish the book, I'd like to talk about some of the ideas it presents and the way they relate to my mom's firm "abstinence only" talks with me, as well as why it's so important that I don't repeat that pattern with Bonnie. Author Jessica Valenti says, "Abstinence-only education seeks to create a world where everyone is straight, women are regulated to the home, the only appropriate family is a nuclear one, reproductive choices are negated, and the only sex people have is for procreation." (Valenti 111.)
The above sentiment is at the very heart of the anti-choice movement as well. Otherwise there is no way these people would not advocate for a sexually educated population. Bottom line, abortion is evil but not as evil as recreational sex, right?