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samedi, décembre 29, 2007

 Abortion and Rape

[Note: Occasionally, one has to stand clearly on one side. I'm standing on the right on this one.]

Abortion is a massively controversial issue, and while I've been brought up to believe that the right to life is supposed to trump any unwanted pregnancy scenario (especially scenarios where premarital sex is concerned), I'm aware that there are circumstances which do make the decision to keep a child harder, such as in the case of rape or incest.

The most persuasive arguments I've heard FOR abortion are those which cut a line neatly between two types of pregnancies - one type which is "the victim's fault" - i.e. the girl had unprotected sex unwisely and now there's a baby along the way; and the other type which is not the mother's fault - i.e. in a rape or incest scenario, or when the child is deformed in the womb, or when there's a 99% chance of down syndrome.

In the case of the former, the general (moral) judgment is that the pregnancy was foolish, but the child should not be penalised for the stupidity of the parents, and the parents have to live with the consequences of their failure to use latex. (Idiots. And I'm not even going to start on the Heb 13:4/1 Cor 6:18 premarital sex lecture.)

The latter type of pregnancy is where the issue turns tricky - should the mother be penalised for something which she had no control over? Rape or the high possibility of deformity/disability fall into this category. Arguments in this corner generally pit the mother against her child - who has the larger "right to life"? Should the mother have her "regular" life back - which was one without the baby? Or should the baby be given a chance to live? Like I said, these are the arguments which are the most persuasive - that the mother should not be penalised for something that she had no control over - so the act of abortion is one which gives the mother power over the past action that she was powerless over (the rape or incest, or the "bad luck" to have a child born deformed or disabled in some way.)

I'm pro-life, and I'm glad to have found out that statistically speaking, most rape victims choose to keep their child. I'm also glad to have found some research which does support the argument against abortion.
a) IMMORAL: Most women still believe that it's immoral to abort.

b) DESTINY: Some women believe that their unplanned child may yet have some unknowable destiny to fulfil. [This is in the vein of Joseph, who told his prodigal, fratricidal brothers: "Am I in the place of God (to wreak vengeance?) You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done..."] So in the same way, they do not wish to play God to that unborn child.

c) ULTIMATUM: Rape victims do not want to inflict the same kind of victimisation on someone else. (However, this argument could go both ways - the child has no choice but to be born, while at the same time, having no ability to exercise the option of abortion.)

d) OVERCOMING: I like this one the best - rape victims often feel that carrying the pregnancy to term, and giving birth will help them "conquer" the violent act - again, in the same way as Joseph.
(Steven Levitt has plenty to say on this issue (one whole chapter in Freakonomics, in fact), and I do agree theoretically with his correlation studies between lower crime and abortion, but hey, I do statistics too, and what's not to say that some other random factor (like cheaper cars and gas prices during the period of study) could have created his "miracle" cure or lower crime rates.)

And that's that.

A meta-discursive thought: I find it mildly disturbing that I feel apologetic for having a stance on this.

[Abortion and Rape]
Sngs Alumni @ 29.12.07 { 1 comments }




I'm fully supportive of your stance! =)

By Anonymous Fenfen, at 2 janvier 2008 à 17:23:00 UTC+8


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