Wednesday, February 02, 2005

It begins

I thought we'd heard the last of the abortion "debate" when Darth Howard himself shut the door on any future agitation from Tony Abbott, Ron Boswell and other God botherers. But according to this article in the Herald, it looks like it's just the beginning.

Quoth the little man with the bad eyebrows: I think some of the ideas being put forward about providing people with assistance in relation to choices, I think they're good. It's good to look at the issues from a practical positive point of view rather than an argumentative one.

Ahh, so suddenly we're taking a "practical", unemotive approach to terminations. Suddenly, infringing on a woman's choice, imposing religious dogma on people and state regulation of women's bodies is "practical" and "positive".


I'm not old enough to remember the bad old days of backyard abortions with wire coat hangers, but I know it's a time I don't want Australia to return to. I've also never had nor ever will have an abortion and I couldn't begin to understand what goes through a woman's mind when she makes that decision. I do, however, have at least one friend (that I know of) who has had a termination and I know she did not make this decision lightly. I also know she is not a murderer, she is not sinful, she does not deserve to be taken to court and she does not regularly have terminations as a form of birth control. These are the myths perpetrated by the RRR and let's not pretend they are not just as emotive in their opposition to abortion as pro-choicers are in their support of the right of choice.

Let's also not be self-righteous hypocrites about the "sanctity" of life when we're invading Iraq based on a lie and wiping out millions of innocent civilians, or torturing political prisoners in concentration camps, or while in the US there are pro-lifers who asssassinate doctors who perform abortions. Life is precious, yes, but what sort of life will a baby have who's born into a world where her father raped her mother, or her parents are smack addicts, or she is adopted out and spends her life shifted from foster home to foster home at the mercy of a hopelessly overworked, underfunded bureaucracy?

My greatest fear is that the establishment of a new anti-abortion lobby is the first step in Australia once again emulating the United States in social extremities. Do we want to live in a country where doctors are assassinated on the street? Or women who go to family planning clinics have pig's blood thrown at them on their way in? Or Jesus freaks stage protests at the funerals of abortion doctors and women they know had an abortion as some stage of their lives?

Fuck no.


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