There may be no more emotionally charged issue in all of politics than that of abortion. Before we can calmly discuss the issue, however, we must put aside terms and allegations such as “woman hater” and “baby killer.” Inflammatory language such as this ONLY serves to allow the big parties to pit people against each other before considering the crux of the issue, which is this: a woman has the right to do with her own body as she chooses. This includes controlling healthcare decisions, what she ingests, how she presents herself in public, etc. This right is absolute.
The conflict, however, lies with the fact that at some point, a fetus is a baby. A baby is a human being. And a human being has the right to live. Most people agree that the point at which this occurs is before full-term childbirth. If this is true, then there is a potential conflict of rights between the child and mother. Except in extremely rare cases where the life of the mother is a factor, I side with a child’s right to live.
That being said, before harsh laws are enacted, we must try to work through the discussion of when a life begins, and what options we might have along the way to make the situation work for everyone involved, without terminating a life, or burdening anyone with decades of guilt. We must also ensure that fathers are involved and held responsible.
Right to Life
I believe that in order to have an honest discussion on abortion, we must also address the right to life. The definition of a human being with rights must hold from the time he or she begins to exist to the time of death. My criteria for defining a life with rights is 1) human, 2) individual, and 3) alive. This definition means I also oppose the death penalty and euthanasia.