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The Issue of Abortion

April 25, 2011

Brad Trost, MP of Saskatoon-Humboldt

So its been a while since my last post, I’ve been preoccupied with exams and what have you, but with the election coming up I thought I’d throw my opinions on abortion out there.  This comes partly in response to the comments by Conservative MP Brad Trost, that the federal government had ‘defunded’ Planned Parenthood.

Now I’ve thought long and hard about where I stand on the issue of abortion.  I don’t think either the pro-life or the pro-choice argument are inherently wrong, or alternatively that they are entirely exclusive from one another.  I am however, pro-choice.

Certain arguments that are positioned by the pro-life advocates I happen to agree with however, such as the argument that abortion is essentially killing a baby.  Before everyone responds with how many sperm die when they ejaculate or how a woman loses an egg every month, these are haploid cells that were not going to turn into a baby.  The fact of the matter is that when you get an abortion, the process of the building of human life have already started, and if left as is, the fetus will result in a baby.  At the point that abortions take place however, discounting late-abortions, the fetus has not developed to the point where it can be considered a baby, but rather it remains ‘a bunch of cells’.  I don’t think they can be disregarded as just ‘a bunch of cells’ without significance however, but rather as a bunch of cells that would have one day created a baby.

So now that I’ve taken the position that the fetus ought to be regarded as a future baby, I will carry on for why I think abortions should be fully legal and supported by the government.  Of course I will argue that a woman’s body is her own, and I nor any politician should have the right to tell them what they can or cannot do with it.  At this point I will also make the argument that the pregnant woman’s rights are of a greater value than of the unborn fetus, due to the fact that it is the mother who will be, under ordinary circumstances, raising the child.

However this should not be what the argument ought to be about.  I think what needs to be discussed is why women are getting abortions, how we can support women who do get pregnant, and how we can create conditions where abortions are not necessary in our society.  Right now however, I argue that they are necessary, and the option should always be available.

I think you would be very hard pressed to find a pro-choice advocate that would argue that life is not significant, because they are not anti-life.  The loss of life, even potential life is unfortunate to say the least.  Reasons why women may want abortions vary around lack of ability to provide for the child, the timing and life-circumstances of a woman etc.  Of course I don’t think women should have children if they’re not ready, but then why are they getting pregnant in the first place?  Not engaging in safe-sex?  Accidents?

As a man, I have to say that the condom is just not the way to go when it comes to safe-sex.  I’m not going to make the argument that its because they’re uncomfortable (which they are), and if men could take a pill, I’m certain we would.  But with everything from slips to tears, there is that risk that continues to be realized.  I think in order to address this issue, more needs to be put in place to get women on birth control methods that they can come to terms with (or hell, even the development of male methods of birth control).

If a woman is getting an abortion, chances are it is because she cannot afford to take care of it, or is too young to make that decision (of course there are exceptions).  This gives attention to single mothers, who are both more likely to get abortions, and without the pro-choice option are structurally disadvantaged.   Many are lucky to have family and friends to support them and what have you, but daycare is expensive, babysitters are expensive, and without someone else to take care of their child throughout the day, how is a single mother going to support herself and her family?

Things like increasing welfare, creating social housing, implementing a national daycare program, and increasing childcare benefits are in my opinion necessary to creating ideal situations for both children and mothers.  To get political here, women on welfare don’t need lower taxes, they need assistance that only social programs and services can provide.  If you’re on welfare, you’re not going to be paying taxes to begin with.  Stephen Harper can say he supports families by lowering taxes and giving an extra $100 to families with children under five or what have you, but this does not help those who need it.  You can whine and complain that people on welfare don’t work and go and spend all their money on booze, but for kids who grow up in households where their parents are on welfare, those government handouts are what keep them alive.

Now just to finish up on an entirely political note here, if you support a woman’s right to choice, and if you support single mothers, you would have to be an imbecile to vote Conservative in the upcoming election.  I don’t care if you have in the past, but don’t do it again if you support either.  I voted NDP in advance polling, and I would be thrilled if you did too, but even if you don’t, just don’t vote Conservative.

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From → Canada, Uncategorized

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