Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Wow. North Dakota has banned all abortions unless a woman’s life is in danger. The proponents of said legislation know it will be challenged and are willing to fight all the way in hopes of abolishing Roe. Welcome to the Dark Ages.

I recently had a conversation with two friends regarding abortion. Both are religious and conservative and hold many views far from my own. The first friend is a devout Catholic, and if anyone is a Christian who follows the teachings of Jesus, it’s her. I have great respect for her faith in God and her willingness to help others. If anyone is in need, she’ll help, even if she’s struggling to pay her own bills. She volunteers for her church and community, donates money to charity and will help anyone. For a while she was giving food and shelter to a guy living out of his car. She did everything in her power to hook him up with the appropriate social services. She’s taken in at least two of her sons’ friends when they had no other place to stay. If she sees someone on the sidewalk struggling with a heavy load, she’ll give them a ride. She does all this selflessly. She tries her hardest to lead a Godly life, and I’d say she succeeds.

The other friend is also a devout Christian, although I know less about her beliefs.

Abortion, the war on terror, and our government often come up as topics of discussion when we’re together. Generally, I don’t say too much as my views are different from theirs and I’m not much of a debater. My one friend’s son is in the Marines and fought in Iraq, so I’m definitely not going down that road with her. Regardless of my feelings on the war, he put his life on the line, so I avoid that subject.

Both would be happy to see abortion outlawed or at the least, have more restrictions. Interestingly, the Catholic friend, although she would prefer there be no abortions, seems like she would be happy with tighter restrictions (such as only in cases of rape or when the mother’s life is in danger.) Her view is that a fetus is a life and should not be destroyed. I respect her viewpoint. I agree that a fetus is alive, but I feel that a woman’s life should come first.

The second friend is a little less clear on her exact view, other than that she feels abortion is wrong except in certain cases. She said straight up if she was raped or was carrying a child with severe defects, she’d terminate without a second thought. In fact, one of her relatives had an abortion when in that situation and my friend completely supported her choice. There’s where things got a little weird for me. I asked about what sort of defects the fetus had and she wasn’t real clear on it. When I was pregnant with Peanut, Hubby and I decided we would not terminate unless Peanut had any defects so severe that he would die anyway or would be unable to live a pain-free, healthy life. Pre-natal testing is far from 100% accurate, and although it can often detect the likelihood of a problem, it often cannot predict the severity. I thought to myself how ironic it was, that I, the pro-choice woman in the group, was judging my pro-life friend. I would need to know for damn sure that my baby would be horribly disabled before I’d consider terminating, whereas she was almost flippant about the whole thing. This is one of the reasons why I feel abortion should be legal and available. No one has the right to judge my decisions or any other woman’s. And no one has the right to make that choice for me or anyone else. Nor do I have the right to judge her.

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