Educate yourself about abortion issues past and present

There should not be one child without a home, food or adequate education if there are so many pro-lifers.

I am not someone who is involved in any sort of pro-life or pro-choice organization but I truly believe a woman should have the right to choose wheather she brings life into this world. Many people will say, “God makes life, so he should take life.” Well, we already know there is too much religious diversity and scientific opinion on the issue to provide evidence for that claim. Plus, there are numerous states that have the death penalty. Now that South Dakota has banned all abortions, it is only a matter of time before similarly conservative states follow suit. Will Minnesota be influenced to change its abortion laws? Only time will tell. I believe it is our duty as average citizens to educate ourselves on the issues that will shape our future, especially abortion. People need to have a better understanding of the origins of Roe v. Wade and the reasons it became law. With all the ways we can obtain information in seconds, you would think we would be more informed about current events and divisive issues. However, I believe, collectively we are less informed than our parents’ generation and less committed to speaking our minds, too.

Pro-choice laws gained support from the political and social activism of the 1960s and 1970s, especially the women’s rights movement. These activists wanted to take advantage of the safe and easily available surgical technology available to them. The newer alternative was much safer for these women. Plus, these improvements also prevented the dangerous ends women would go to in order to abort unwanted babies prior to majority acceptance of Roe v. Wade. The problem our society has today with abortions is largely based on religious doctrine, a question of ethics and the morality or immorality of abortion.

We are faced with a serious question of supporting or not supporting an issue that will show up on the Supreme Court docket in the near future. With the presence of more conservative-leaning judges, I believe Roe v. Wade will be overturned, unless we dissent. I make the case that abortion should remain legally protected because the benefits to society outweigh the “moral” costs.

My reasoning is that morality is too vague a term in regard to this issue. The same folks speaking of morality are the same people harassing, assaulting and even killing those who acknowledge women’s protected right or disagree with their religious views. What sense does it make to take a life in order to save one?

In addition, I am further perplexed by the issue of abortion because of the contradictions I see. On the one hand, I read about various groups spending a lot of time and money to prevent abortions. Yet, there are many children in foster and adoption agencies waiting to be taken in by families every day who might never find a home. Where are all these pro-life activists?

There should not be one child without a home, food or adequate education in the United States if there are so many pro-lifers in our society. Likewise, the juvenile criminal system should not be filled with kids that lack role models and are destined for prison or an early grave with all these big-hearted people in society. Instead of focusing on the children that may have been, let us focus on the ones that are already here!

Finally, I am tired of such a small issue taking up so much time and money when there are more important issues affecting our society. There needs to be more discourse about livable wages, affordable housing, equal access to higher learning, more funding for education, universal health care, war and improving the criminal system. The issue of abortion does not affect as many lives as those I have mentioned. The reason I think the issue of abortion is magnified is because of politicians and a conservative religious community that aims to use religious doctrine to intimidate those that differ in their views. Let’s all educate ourselves on this issue in order to make better decisions for our future. I am starting right now. Either way we will be forced to live with the outcome of the challenges to Roe v. Wade, good or bad.

Johnny D. Oliver Jr. is a University student. Please send comments to [email protected]