In the abortion debate there are two main positions: Pro Life or Pro Choice. I've already written at length about the misnomer of the former and the fact that it is really just a euphemism for Anti-Choice, since pretty much everyone is in favor of life, so this post is not about that. It's about the debate between the two opposing viewpoints concerning whether or not a woman should be legally allowed to have an abortion. The "Pro Life" crowd believes that their own superior sense of morality gives them the right to pass laws to prevent anyone else from choosing to have an abortion. And the Pro Choice group believes that, since there are intelligent people on both sides of the issue and since there is a debate with significant numbers on both sides, that no restrictions should be in place regarding a woman's choice to terminate pregnancy. I, of course, come down staunchly on the side of Choice.
What you don't hear much about in this debate is the sub-group of Pro-Choicers who go a step beyond choice. You hear people say things like, "I wouldn't have an abortion myself but I won't stand in the way of any other woman if she chooses to have one." But there are a group of people, though be it a minority, who are not only Pro-Choice but actually pro-abortion. These are the people who not only agree that women should have the right to choose, but that in many cases, having an abortion might be a really good idea. I am one of those people.
When my wife and I were having kids, back in the '80s, we decided in both instances of pregnancy that if we found out in advance that the fetus was seriously abnormal or that the child would be deformed in a manner that would make his or her life miserable (or our lives miserable) that we would terminate the pregnancy. There was not much room for discussion on the matter. One of us said it and the other one agreed instantly. I don't even remember who said it first, probably me.
In cases where a woman is pregnant, especially a teenager, who is troubled by her pregnancy, she should give serious thought to having an abortion. If you are pregnant and you have reason to believe your baby will be disabled, have an abortion. If you are troubled about having a child, and not just apprehensive that maybe you won't be a good parent, you'll probably do just fine, but really troubled that you are definitely not ready for motherhood, then by all means, abort it. And the sooner you do it, the better. First trimester abortions are little more than an expensive form of birth control. And it's not really that expensive if you go to a place like Planned Parenthood.
If you are worried that you would be committing murder, don't be. It is not murder. That's just the rhetoric of the Christian Right who have you spooked. If you don't believe me that it's not murder, go ahead and call a criminal trial attorney and ask him if you could be arrested for murder if you have an abortion. He'll tell you absolutely not. If you are worried that perhaps it's a sin and you'll go to hell, again, don't worry. That's just the Christian Right drumming it into your head again. There is no such thing as sin; it is something that the Church made up centuries ago to control the masses. There is morality, sure. But you get to decide what is moral based on your own good conscience (as well as federal and state laws). And there is no such place as hell, so you can't go there. Again, hell is a concept that was invented by the early church to keep people coming. It is all a scam. And it's been a scam so long that even the scammers no longer realize that it's a scam. You have nothing to fear from hell.
What you don't need to do is bring another unwanted kid into the world for me, a taxpayer, to help you raise. That's not fair to me, since I'm not the one who impregnated you. I'm not judging you; I'll leave that to the Christians. It's what they do best. Girls and boys of a certain age have sex. They always have; they always will. Maybe the abstinence-only sex education you were getting didn't drive home the message. It seldom does. What you needed was birth control. But if you're pregnant, that ship has sailed. If you are an unmarried teen, or a young woman without a good job or a stable relationship, then the best recommendation that anyone can give you is to have an abortion. And then after you have it, forget about it. It's really no big deal. It's not murder; it won't send you to hell and if close friends and family judge you harshly for it, then what you need to do is find better close friends. There's not much you can do about the family.
So to recap, there are really three positions when it comes to abortion: The anti-choice movement, the pro-choice but anti-abortion group, and the pro-abortion group. I stand proudly as a member of the latter and with good reason. It is the only choice that allows not only for freedom of choice for the individual, but also alleviates the depression and anxiety over having an abortion by the patient.