Opinion: Banning Abortion Doesn’t Stop Abortion

Ayoooo! It’s about to get a little political/feminist up in here, nerds! So, if you prefer your book bloggers to be 100% book-talk all the time and to never express opinions beyond that, or if you’d rather not ruin our relationship on the chance that we have differing opinions on sensitive subject matter, then consider this your five second warning…

5, 4, 3, 2…

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I’m opinionated. Unapologetically so. Does that mean I never change my position? Of course not.

I like facts and logic and statistics, and using judgement, to reach a position of opinion or principal. And if new information comes along that can tweak that position, then I duly take that into consideration. I don’t come to conclusions based on emotions, but rather on what’s the most rational..

That said, I don’t respond well to people who have no logical reasoning to back up their opinions, who instead choose to function from a place of emotion or, in some cases, religious belief.

“I don’t like LGBTQ people because the bible…!!”

SHUT. UP. You don’t like or condone, or give respect or just basic human decency, to a whole group of human beings because of… magic?

fuck you david schwimmer GIF

Historically, humans have used magic to justify slavery, segregation and white supremacy, so seriously, fuck off. You want to debate? Then do it in reality, leave magic out of it.

You don’t like LGBTQ people because you don’t get it and you think it’s gross or because you’re closeted AF and are actually self-hating?

Like, 100% anyone who is always staunchly against gay people and so preoccupied with what they’re doing in their private time (gay men in particular) are consistently outed as gay. I don’t say that to perpetuate some harmful stereotype, I say it because it really points to a serious issue of acceptance, particularly religious acceptance. The bigotry that exist in those kinds of communities creates people who hate the LGBTQ+ community for fear they are actually a member of it. But if they admit it they’ll lose friends, family, possibly a job or standing in a religious community. It’s a huge factor in homophobia that we need to address, if we’re going to address this religious bullshit that is a breeding ground for hate.

But I digress…

“Abortion is wrong because you’re killing babies!!!!”

Okay, this is a little more nuanced. If you really think abortion is “murder,” I can 100% understand how you came to that position and I can respect it, to a point. It’s not scientifically accurate though, let’s be clear. A banana has more DNA than a fetus. Cells in a Petri dish have a “heartbeat” – it’s just electrical impulses. But believe it if you want, just don’t fucking scream this kind of shit at people because it’s not helping your position come across as measured *cough Meghan McCain cough.*

And also, stop trying to make laws that affect everyone based off of your own personal beliefs. Laws need to be firmly based on SCIENTIFIC FACT.

Given what’s been happening in the US, and with the intention to overturn Roe v. Wade, saying my peace about women’s rights and abortion rights is important to me.

I’m pro-choice and I respect people who are pro-life for themselves, but I do not respect people who are trying to enforce that pro-life position on everyone else. Make decisions for your own body. But you don’t get to have that right over other people.

Like I said, I understand that people come to that position based on the idea that abortion “kills babies,” but beyond that I’ve never heard a fact-based, logical reason to hold a pro-life position or to impose a law on everyone. It’s always emotional. It’s always religious. And separation of church and state is still very much a thing… for now.

Ironically, most people who are pro-life in North America, also tend to be pro-death penalty. They tend to be anti-immigration. They tend to be hunters. They tend to be against gun control.

“But the HEARTBEAT!”

You know what else has a heartbeat? Immigrants fleeing horrific conditions. Those children that have been locked up in cages and separated from their parents. Children who go to school every day wondering if today will be the day someone comes in with a gun and shoots them or their friends.

They have heartbeats. They have the ability to feel pain, to feel psychological trauma.

Most people who are pro-life are anti-birth control. They are anti-sex education. They are anti-welfare or other “entitlements.” They are anti-healthcare reform. They are anti-most-government-run-social-programs.

So, it seems to me that once they achieve saving “babies from being killed,” that’s really where their activism ends.

They aren’t interested in helping women who didn’t want, and couldn’t afford, that baby. They aren’t interested in helping women attain ways to not get pregnant in the first place. They aren’t interested in teaching teens how to have safe sex. They aren’t interested in getting that baby affordable healthcare. They aren’t interested in providing that new mom some kind of financial subsidy.

And if that baby is gay or trans?! Fucking forget it. They are seen as less than human because…magic, the bible.

You know, that bible that told you not to judge, to love your neighbours, to be kind to people who are different from you? To treat people the way you want to be treated? That Jesus guy who hung out with sex workers and the diseased, who other people looked down on?

Jesus was a liberal, socialist hippie. This Jesus that the Right has concocted – a pro-gun, hateful bigot, pro-capitalist hero – is complete fucking bullshit.

Look, no one wants to have an abortion. No one is “pro-abortion.”

Women are having abortions because an accident happened. They tried to be safe, but failed and they just don’t have the means to be a parent.

Women have abortions because they were raped.

Women have abortions because of incest.

Women have abortions because it would literally kill them to carry a child to term. Or because the child would needlessly suffer after birth.

Women are not having abortions as their preferred form of birth control.

Women are not having abortions because it’s fun.

I’ve never had an abortion, but I consider it an option for my life. I live in Canada where abortion is covered by our healthcare system and my birth control costs me $40 a year.

I’m in my 30s and I’ve never been pregnant. I’m married and have made a personal decision to be child-free. If I were to get pregnant, I think I would have an abortion, but I’m not totally sure because I have a great marriage, a wonderful husband who is a great dad to his two kids, and we’re financially stable. I just don’t want children. I don’t want to be a mother. It’s not the right direction for my life. And while I actively take measures to avoid pregnancy, accidents do happen.

Previous to my marriage I was in an abusive relationship and I worried about getting pregnant all the time. It was a full-blown anxiety for me to the point that I kept secret pregnancy tests in our apartment and had drawn up a plan for how I’d access an abortion should I need one.

At that time in my life, my reason was not because I wanted to be child-free (as it is now.) My reason was because my boyfriend was a jobless, violent pathological asshole who had zero control over his anger, who cheated on me constantly, who verbally & physically abused me – choked me, slapped me, grabbed me, pushed me, pulled me and threw me around. He treated me like shit. How would he treat a child?

It was a volatile situation, and while I wanted to escape, it would take four years before I was able to. The idea of being tied to him for the rest of my life by a child, and to have that child be subjected to his abuse, was a horrifying nightmare that I would never have allowed to happen.

My pro-choice position starts from this personal experience and is extended by facts and reason.

You can say “abortion is killing babies! Abortion is murder!” as many times as you fucking want, and that may be true in the most liberal, loose sense of the word, but that’s doesn’t mean abortion is inherently wrong.

You have to look at the big picture. You have to weigh all things that happen when women can’t obtain safe and legal abortions vs. “abortion is murder.” It’s shades of grey. It’s nuanced and sometimes it’s the lesser of two evils.

Should I have gotten pregnant by my ex, that child would be growing up with an abusive father and mother that didn’t really want to be a mother. Is that not worse than abortion?

That’s the scale.

When women can’t obtain safe and legal abortions, they have abortions anyway.

Let’s just get this straight: banning abortion does not stop abortion. Just like how pro-birthers also tend to say banning guns won’t stop people from getting guns.

Full grown women, with lives and careers and families and friends, who do not want to be pregnant, will find another way to see that the pregnancy ends. It was this – the deaths or injuries of women whose bodily autonomy was taken away from them – that spurred Roe v. Wade in the first place. Have we learned nothing from history?

Abortion bans are going backwards. They are going back to a time where there was more death, not less. And that’s why the supreme court stepped in.

Is the death and injury of these desperate women acceptable as long as we’re banning abortion?

“She should just keep her legs closed!” Shut the fuck up. There are currently more than 200,000 untested rape kits sitting in storage all over the United States. Men should just keep it in their pants, how about that? Vasectomies should be mandatory until a long-term relationship is established. They are reversible, you know. Oh what’s that? You can’t force someone to do something with their body that they don’t want to do? Go figure. It’s always the woman’s problem to deal with, right?

Pregnancy is not a punishment for women having and enjoying sex. And women don’t get pregnant on their own. I can think of a million reasons to take birth control, but only one reason for Viagra (which is totally covered by health insurance in the US, unlike birth control.)

I’m going to take the position that if abortions are going to be made illegal, that child support should be enforced immediately and that immigrants can’t be deported because they are carrying US citizens. If you’re pregnant and can’t access an abortion because of a fetal heartbeat, then you should be able to insure the fetus as a dependant and collect death benefits if you miscarry. Pregnant inmates will also need to be released immediately because you can’t jail family members for someone else’s crimes.

Let’s just go all in if we’re going to start forcing births because the fetus is legally a child that can’t be “murdered.”

When women can’t obtain safe and legal abortions, more children end up in foster care or poverty.

Pro-birth advocates say all the time, “just put the child up for adoption,” even though statistically, most of them have never attempted to adopt a child themselves.

Currently there are roughly half-a-million children in the US foster care system. 500,000 children! Five-hundred-fucking-thousand.

Most of these children will never be permanently placed with a family. They will spend years languishing, going home to home to home. And these homes are not going to always be the best living conditions. Endless stories of abuse come out of these situations. Eleven percent (11%!!) of children placed into foster care each year will not live in a foster home with a family, but instead will be sent to group homes or institutions.

What kind of psychological effects do you think that has on a person? What kind of mental health effects? What do you think it does to a child to know they are not wanted? Or to grow up abused and without any advantages? What kind of cycle do you think it perpetuates?

Is the pain of unwanted, improperly cared for children acceptable as long as we’re banning abortion?

“So you think all children is foster care should have been aborted!” Um, no. Way to use your reading comprehension. But the fetuses that are aborted currently are not being placed in foster care. Why would you want to strain a system that is already strained? Why would you want to make the foster care system worse? You can’t even get it under control now. And you don’t want to. You don’t like government funded social programs, remember? You don’t want your tax dollars helping other people, remember?

Despite a common misconception, the majority of children entering foster care are not babies, but children that are usually around 8-years-old. They’ve been taken from parents who were not fit to be parents, who never should have had children, who couldn’t care for the child, and the government finally had to step in.

One third of children entering the foster care system are young PoC.

The majority of people who are adopting children are white. And the majority of those white people are not interested in adopting an 8-year-old PoC. They want babies. They preferably want white babies.

An abortion ban unfairly targets poor women of colour whose children will languish in the foster care system, or who will grow up in poverty, perpetuating an “entitlements” program that most pro-birthers on the right would rather see ended because they don’t want their tax dollars going to people who should just be “pulling themselves up by their boot straps.”

Not everyone has bootstraps. Not everyone even has boots! And by forcing people in poverty to have children they can’t afford or take care of, you are making the system worse, not better.

Every year, roughly 17,000 kids will age out of the foster care system without ever finding a permanent family.

What kind of foster care statistics do you think will exist if abortion is made illegal? Do you honestly think it’ll get better? Give me a fucking break.

Is the worsening of this system, the increase in the amount of children without homes or living in poverty, acceptable as long as we’re banning abortion?

When women do not have access to safe and legal abortions, you are taking away their human right to bodily autonomy.

Of course, the pro-birth answer to this argument is that the fetus also has a right to bodily autonomy. I would totally agree with this if a fetus didn’t require a women’s body to survive.

Either way, you need to truly ask yourself, does a fetus matter more than a grown woman who has a fully realized life?

The logical answer is no.

You can be sad. You can say how awful it is that a woman gets to decide to end a pregnancy, and how unfair that is to the unborn fetus, but you don’t get to take governmental action to force a woman to act as an incubator against her will.

If I needed a blood transfusion in order to keep me alive, no one could make a donor match give me their blood. The government would never make another human being sit still while a doctor forcibly removed blood from their body.

People have to volunteer their blood for donation.

If I needed a organ donation in order to keep me alive and there was a perfect donor match in the room next to me, no one could harvest his organs without permission. The government would never forcibly take the organs. That man would have had to agree in life to donate his body after his death, or the remaining family would have to agree.

And if they didn’t, the doctors would come back into my room and say they were sorry but that I needed to prepare to die.

A corpse gets more bodily autonomy than a pregnant person, even if it means another person will die because of it.

Is reducing a person’s human status to less than that of a corpse acceptable as long as we’re banning abortion?

Anyone who has a uterus should be horrified by the idea that they are viewed as less than, and that laws are being put into place to codify that status.

Even if you are a pro-life woman, it should infuriate you that you are seen as having less rights to her body than a corpse, even if you’d never have an abortion.

It should horrify you even more that you agree that you should have less rights to your body than a corpse.

It should still make you angry that the women in your life are seen as less than.

It should frighten you that laws are being put into place to imprison women on a felony charge that will ultimately make them ineligible to vote.

Don’t you see the pattern? Do you see what mostly men in senates and congressional caucuses are doing? They are playing on pro-life women’s “killing babies” emotions so that they go along with rolling back women’s rights.

Is the loss of women’s equality acceptable as long as we’re banning abortion?

When women do not have access to safe and legal abortion, you are taking away their full potential.

Pro-birthers might say “well, what about the baby’s potential?” What about it? Is that fetus more important than that of a person who is already alive and living and functioning? No. Again, you might not like it, but rationally and logically, the scale tips in favour of the grown-ass person.

By forcing people to birth children when they do not want to, you are taking away the potential they have to make something more of their lives.

Maybe they were going to be doctors or lawyers or run an animal rescue. Maybe the fetus would to, but the grown woman has a head start so she gets to make the rules about whether she’ll give that fetus the opportunity. See how that works?

In the US, every year one million teen girls will become pregnant. Of those, 78% will be accidental pregnancies. Of those, 35% will choose to have an abortion.

Without access to abortion, 35% of pregnant teens will have to sacrifice their potential before they’ve even had a chance to really start. They might drop out of school, they might receive inadequate prenatal care – either because they keep the pregnancy a secret or because their state does not have an adequate healthcare system. They’ll rely on public assistance to raise their child, which the Right is also trying to cut.

Children raised by teen mothers are more likely to suffer significant disadvantageous – medical, economical, psychological and educational – compared to children raised by older mothers who intended the pregnancy.

Teenagers who have children are also more likely to leave a baby in horrific situations due to fear and isolation. Babies left in dumpsters or bathrooms, toilets or in the woods have all be documented. Earlier this month, a young girl threw her 7-week old baby off of a rocky cliff into a ravine. The baby survived and the mother has been charged with attempted murder.

If a random stranger hadn’t heard the cries of the baby, that child would have died due to starvation and exposure.

Instances like this will only increase. Especially when inadequate health care, and mental health care, aren’t provided to women even now when abortion is the law. Postpartum depression combined with no access to aid, and the fact that you were forced to have a baby? Nothing good comes from that.

Is taking away a teenager’s potential and forcing her child to grow up at a disadvantage acceptable as long as we’re banning abortion?

Is an increase in children left to die because the mother was scared and alone and traumatized acceptable as long as we’re banning abortion?

Obviously, this doesn’t apply to all teen mothers or children of teen mothers. But all teen pregnancies are not an episode of Teen Mom.

When women do not have access to safe and legal abortion, mothers with a wanted pregnancy are forced to risk their lives and cause unnecessary suffering to nonviable lives.

Contrary to the hysterical – yeah, I said hysterical – talking-point that the Left is killing fully formed babies that can survive outside of the womb on the regular, that’s actually not a thing. At all.

88% of pregnancies are ended within the first 12-13 weeks in the first trimester. Anything happening after that is largely due to medical necessity.

And newsflash!! Pregnant women are still susceptible to diseases, like cancer, that require medical treatment and intervention.

Things like surgery or chemotherapy, could be vital to saving a women’s life who has been diagnosed with cancer, for example, while she’s already into her wanted pregnancy. In order to save the woman’s life, a later term abortion might need to be performed. Or it might not. Perhaps the woman will say she’ll continue chemo after the baby is born. Or maybe she won’t. Maybe she’ll sacrifice herself. Maybe she won’t.

But in a case like this, it’s so fucking important that the option is available and that it’s a discussion that is ONLY happening between that woman and her doctor. It would be a disturbingly heartbreaking decision to have to make and not one that the government, or bleeding-heart pro-birthers, should have any say in. At all. \

Things like severe fetal abnormalities are generally not discoverable until the 15th and 16th week of pregnancy. Hydranencephaly, archondrogensis and anencephaly are all examples of abnormalities that might cause a woman to consider a late term abortion because a baby born with these kinds of deformities is guaranteed to die or suffer through a very short life.

Again, we’re talking about a woman who wanted the pregnancy but has to work with her doctor to determine which is crueller – a late term abortion, or the inevitable suffering of a baby after birth until it dies?

These kinds of medical decisions are horrific and heartbreaking, but they are real and we can’t just ban abortion and pretend like that is some moralistic band-aid that gets slapped on and makes everything okay. Women in these kinds of situations deserve every ounce of sympathy and medical help that can possibly be made available to them, including mental health services.

Taking a position to ban abortion, even in medically necessary situations doesn’t make you a hero, it makes you needlessly cruel. Objectively, you are not making the situation better for someone, you are only inflicting more trauma by forcing a pregnancy that will either end a woman’s life or cause a birthed baby to suffer before their inevitable death.

The women who have come forward to talk about these kinds of situations which have unfortunately befallen them, have largely said that the abortion was the best decision for that child. You have to know, you have to, that a woman who wanted a child would never callously end that pregnancy. She would be devastated. She would be traumatized. She would be heartbroken. These women feel they are causing the least amount of suffering, that they are doing what’s right for their families and themselves and for the life that would have only ever known suffering.

And whether you agree with that or not, is truly of no consequence. Strangers should not get an opinion on this kind of traumatic and gut-wrenching experience. End of.

Asking the government, instead of a doctor, to make these kinds of harsh medical decisions is just heartless and nonsensical.

Is the suffering of terminal babies, and the trauma of forcing a woman to endure the birth and death of her child, or even the death of the mother, really acceptable as long as we’re banning abortion?

And, for the record, women are not having late term abortions because they’ve changed their minds about having a child at the last minute. That’s not a fucking thing.

If pro-birthers really really really wanted to end abortions; if these states passing draconian laws really really really wanted to end abortions, they would not be passing restrictive laws that make no exceptions for rape or incest, and that can criminalize miscarriages.

Instead, they would be making sex education comprehensive and honest and accurate so that teenagers, and even adults, know what they fuck they are doing.

Newsflash, you might not like it and it might go against whatever religious sensibilities you hold, but in the real world people are sexual animals. We like sex, we have lots of it and teenagers are the horniest things on the planet. Teenage boys get so many erections they are basically living with an erection more often then they aren’t, and they jerk-off constantly. And as soon as they can, they’ll fuck whoever is willing to fuck them too.

I cleaned my stepson’s room once. ONCE. All I will say is: ruined socks.

If you wanted to end abortions, you would start with teaching the horniest things on the planet exactly how sex works so that they know how to keep themselves safe.

Abstinence-only education does not work.

Fact: States that have abstinence-only sex education, or make teenagers take virginity-pledges and restrict birth control access, have the highest rates of abortion and teen pregnancy.

In 1992, California had an abstinence-only sex education plan. The teen pregnancy rate was 175 per every 1,000 teens. In 2005, the state introduced medically accurate and unbiased sex education, and as of 2017, the pregnancy rate had dropped to just 26 per every 1,000 teens.

And like I said previously, 35% of teen pregnancies end in abortion. By dropping the teen pregnancy rate, you are dropping the abortion rate. That’s a fact.

You want to end abortion, stop making birth control a religious-right issue. When birth control is provided without question, is affordable and accessible for everyone, abortion rates drop.

In a study circa 2010, researchers found that when birth control was provided for free or made affordable, the abortion rate among women was 9 in every 1,000 compared to the national average of 41 in every 1,000.

If you want to end abortion, access to low cost or free birth control is essential.

For whatever reason, instead of being sensible and proactive in ending abortions with strategies that do work, the pro-birth movement only focuses on codifying a ban that we have already proven does not work.

Accept what does work and lobby for it, or elect representatives that will see real solutions put into place. If ending abortion means that much to you, it should tip the scales when weighed against “pretending sex isn’t happening and not providing birth control.”

The country with the lowest abortion rate in the world in The Netherlands, where abortion is considered a human right and is readily accessible and covered by the national health care system. Of course there are restrictions that are logical and I think most people would agree on. Abortions are legal up to the 21st week, after that they can only be performed for medical reasons.

The abortion rate in The Netherlands is 5 out of every 1,000 women.

The Netherlands provides contraception to all genders as part of their national healthcare plan, and has made teaching factual and accurate sex education an important part of their education system. They have government-funded family planning programs which target those who are most likely to be at risk of unwanted pregnancies. And a large scale, non-moralistic public education campaign that provides a positive message about sex and sexuality, while teaching the general population about pregnancy and how to prevent it, has been very successful since its conception. No pun intended.

The fact is that banning abortion only causes the abortion rates to increase.

We’ve seen it before. We have the data.

So, why do those opposed to abortion continue to try and make it illegal? Why are they persisting in doing things that actually cause more abortions, instead of backing congresspeople and laws and education and healthcare that has been proven all over the world to actually drop the abortion rate?

It’s counterproductive and idiotic.

And I have never met a pro-birth person who has a good reason for any of it besides “It’s killing babies!!!”

I got it. We know. But we’re talking about shades of grey. We’re talking about a scale. And there are so many other things that can be put on the scale, besides abortion, that outweighs it in both the short-term effects and the big picture effects.

If you want to keep the status of women at more than a corpse, and you really want to lower abortion rates, then you would drop your support of restrictions and bans and support access to birth control, health care and sex education.

There is room for discussion on why you personally might be pro-life for yourself. And I will always respect that.

But there is zero room for discussion when it comes to trying to force Sharia-law like rules over all women, taking away their personal agency and making all social and economic issues surrounding abortion worse, not better.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

Thanks for indulging me while I got that off of my chest.

Please note: rude comments will be deleted or not approved at all. Comments that don’t add any substance but consist of the word “murder” will not be acknowledged. It’s my blog and I can do what I want.

But, if you wish to have a respectful conversation, I’m all for it.

Stay safe. Be Kind. But, take no shit.

Later, Booknerds ✌️🔪

10 thoughts on “Opinion: Banning Abortion Doesn’t Stop Abortion

  1. i will never forget the doctor that ran through the “possible side effects/threats of fatality” with me as i sat in a chair, a terrified and financially unstable 22 year old. only to have him follow up with “none of this shit is scientifically proven; they just make me say it.” bless up, man.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Nothing has to be scientifically proven as long as you really really want to think it’s true, apparently. Good for that doctor and good for you for making the right decision for your life. xx


  2. This post in brilliant Krystin!

    I got into a very heated argument with my Nana over the weekend about abortion. It ended in me storming off in tears, shaking because I felt like I was talking to a brick wall. I couldn’t look at her for the rest of the day.

    You’ve summed up everything I wanted to say in that moment but couldn’t articulate through my anger and frustration.

    I like to think I’m logical in a lot of things, but not when it comes to my rights as a human being.
    I’ve tried to get my emotions under control but they always crawl up and out of my throat.
    As a woman who also doesn’t want kids, falling pregnant has become my greatest fear in today’s political climate because who knows if or when Australia might take up these laws as well.

    I’m so thankful for your post and I’ll probably be forwarding it onto anyone who wants to argue my rights away.

    Do you mind if I share this on Facebook?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Grey!! I’m so sorry you felt like you couldn’t express yourself, but I think that just means you’re passionate. It took me a really long time to learn how to keep my emotions in check when I wanted to debate something I was passionate about. It started with writing essays like this. It just makes me feel better. If something is down on paper and I can get that out of me, it’s like a valve release so that I don’t blow up the next time I speak on it. So it just takes practice! Using your words is your thing so I’m sure you’ll get there!! Until then, I’m happy to help if I can. I got your child-free back ♡

      And totally, please share!! xx

      Liked by 1 person

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