I have chosen to remain anonymous because my story involves another person, and I must respect her privacy.
Two years ago, my younger sister had a tubal pregnancy that requiredemergency. Her fallopian tube was removed, which, of course, also terminated her pregnancy.
Are my sister and her surgeons murderers? Should a young mother and wife be put at risk of death in order to save an embryo that is very unlikely to survive?
If someone truly believes that any termination of a pregnancy after conception is murder, then the answer is yes. Yet I know that my sister wanted to have another baby, and by no means was this murder. After this incident brought this issue home to me in a very personal way, I find it absolutely insulting that people hold such extreme views so tightly that they are unwilling to admit that there are exceptions.
So many discussions of abortion are simplistic, as though the issue were easy. But the truth is, the issue is complex, and that is why it has been debated for centuries. Very few people have read the Roe v. Wade decision, and people on both sides misrepresent it. The Court lays out the individual rights of both a pregnant woman and her unborn child, as well as the interests of the State, and attempts to balance those rights. A woman's rights to health and life cannot be disregarded. An unborn child's right to life cannot be disregarded. The state's interest in protecting a woman's rights and an unborn child's rights cannot be disregarded. One may disagree with the way that the Court balanced these rights, but views that disregard these rights are a discredit to us all. Extreme pro-life views disregard a woman's right to health and life. Extreme pro-choice views disregard an unborn child's right to life. The solution lies somewhere between these extremes. Until politicians are willing to drop the polarizing views that they use to win votes, and become willing to sit down and discuss the nuances.
I am saddened by the ease with which women can get abortion on demand. However, I also fear that one day embryos will be granted rights that supercede the rights of adult women.
Is Roe v. Wade perfect? Probably not. But we would do well to follow Roe v. Wade's lead in acknowledging the various rights and interests that must be considered. Until that happens, the conversation on this issue will continue to be dominated by extreme minority views.
From a Pro-Balance woman in Minnesota.
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