What do you do when you need to get a new blog post out but are tired like hell and don’t have much time because you promised your friend that you will bake a pineapple cake for her!?
The answer is: Let someone else do your dirty work! In this particular case I don’t mean a guest blogger (sadly, even I’m not able to produce them on such a short notice), but an interesting article you found on-line. Make your readers read that, throw in some commentaries, and voilà – your work is done, at least for the week!
Please, take a minute to read this article about a Christian obstetrician, who is trying to explain to the public why he not only performs abortions, but is in fact one of few doctors who perform them up to the 24 weeks of pregnancy.
Abortion rights is currently a hot topic for me, not only because I’m a woman who could get pregnant (I mean, duh!), but also because I was recently unfriended on Facebook by a former colleague, who apparently felt that our beliefs and values were too different to be friends anymore. He is a conservative Catholic and I have always been very open with him about the fact that I’m neither Christian, not conservative. For a past couple of years, I did my best to ignore his FB statuses that were trying to explain women why they shouldn’t get an abortion even if the pregnancy is a result of rape (just in case you didn’t know: God knows what He is doing and if He considers you strong enough to handle such a thing, you are supposed to see it as a precious gift).
Those of you who know me personally can probably imagine how hard it was for me to keep my mouth shut.
But what did I get in return for trying to be tolerant and accepting of people’s diverse beliefs!? My friend, instead of showing the same courtesy, proceeded to bitch underneath statuses where I shared MY views and even posted stuff on my wall that was supposed to show me the error of my ways. When I proved hard to convert, he unfriended me.
See, that’s the fundamental difference between people who have their beliefs yet are still capable of looking at an issue from another perspective, and people who can’t.
My ex-friend might be surprised to learn that despite of being a fierce pro-choice supporter in public life, privately I’m more or less convinced that a fetus has a soul (and therefore counts as a very tiny human being) from the moment of conception. Spiritually, it makes the most sense.
However, unlike of my ex-friend and millions of fundies out there, I don’t feel that the whole world is obligated to follow my beliefs and values. And when I think about issues like reproductive rights, I’m trying my best to see it from multiple perspectives, to learn from history, and to look around how it works for folks in different cultures. Which is why, if I had that kind of power, I wouldn’t even think about making abortions illegal, because if you look hard enough, you clearly see that on the long run it doesn’t do anybody any good. (And no, you will NOT save lives. Women, who can afford it, will simply go to get the procedure done in another country; and those who can’t, will do it themselves with a knitting needle, which in many cases will result in a loss of the fetus AND the mother. Proven numerous times thorough the history of the humankind.) What I would do, if I had that kind of power, would be distributing contraceptives generously and freely to everyone who was interested, and providing sex ed in schools that actually taught adolescents how to use condoms instead of trying to convince them that premarital sex was a sin. But hey, that’s America for you!
And that’s why I was so impressed with Dr. Willie J. Parker’s story. He is a wonderful example of a person capable of seeing beyond his ego. He has my respect and admiration, and I certainly pray that the fundamental religious right won’t try to assassinate him any time soon!