Dani K. Michigan

The Fight For Reproductive Rights

A letter on the support of abortion.

Dear future president,

I would like to talk to you about reproductive rights. Although abortion has become a quite hot topic I hope I can persuade you into seeing how sensible and humane it can be. Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, has been quoted “When motherhood becomes the fruit of a deep yearning, not the result of ignorance or accident, its children will become the foundation of a new race”. While Margaret Sanger has been proved problematic I do agree with this quote, a baby should be born to a loving and wanting situation and not abandoned. There are an estimated 140 million orphans worldwide and these children represent half of the people living in poverty. A child given up for adoption is almost destined to have an underprivileged life. Other than the obvious what long term effects can this lifestyle have on these children? What emotional stress are these children subjected to? A recent study reveals that 49.9% of orphans experience severe depression, and a large portion of orphans experience other attachment issues such as destructive tendencies, aggressiveness, and fear of abandonment. Another factor orphans are subjected to is trauma. An upwards of 75% of all children in foster care have experienced sexual assault, and many of these victims don’t report their assault out of fear or lack of resources. Should we subject the unwanted children of America to these horrific environments? Without abortion many children would be forced into this broken system.

Another factor in the support of abortion is a woman’s right to her body. A quote from Gloria Steinem, a feminist activist “Whether or not women can determine when and whether to have children is the single biggest element in whether we’re healthy or not, whether we’re educated or not, how long our life expectancy is, whether we can be active in the world or not.”

Gloria Steinem mentions women’s health in her quote. The sad truth is whether abortion is legal and safe or not, if a woman is desperate she will find a way to have one. Self induced abortions come with many risks such as severe vaginal bleeding, lead poisoning, drug overdose, and even death. In countries where abortion isn’t an option women die everyday. Approximately 20 million unsafe abortions are carried out worldwide and almost 400 women die each day due to these self abortions. Whether women choose to take pills that will detach the fetus from the uterine wall or by inserting a foreign object, like a coat hanger or knitting needle, into their bodies there is no safe way to perform a self-inflicted abortion. Without abortion being supported by the law women will be forced to risk great harm to their body to take control of their lives.

A lot of the focus in this letter has been on people who have already been born but you may be wondering about the babies subjected to abortions. What about these babies? Is it ethical to terminate these fetuses? Absolutely. A common misconception is that babies experience extreme agony during abortions. This has been proven by neuroscientists not to be true. The cerebral cortex is the part of the brain that is responsible for feeling pain. This doesn’t develop in a fetus until 26 weeks of growth. 92% of abortions are carried out during the first trimester, which is up to 21 weeks and once a pregnancy reaches week 24 legal abortion is no longer a legal option. Even in later cases of pregnancy a woman’s life or health can never be compromised to preserve a fetus due to common ground established by the Supreme Court. This being stated many fanatic pro life supporters still consider abortion to be wrong and some have felt motivated enough to take violent actions that I would even consider terrorism. According to “Sisterhood Is Forever: A Women’s Anthology For A New Millennium” between the years of 1991 to 2001 multiple attacks have been taken out on abortion providers resulting in eight deaths and 33 seriously wounded, 20 arsons, 10 bombings, and clinics in 23 states receiving threats of anthrax and chemical offenses. So now I pose the question, if these people are so concerned with preserving life why are they trying so actively to destroy it? Abortion is a legal action however murder, assault, and arson are all very serious crimes, who is the true criminal here?

To summarize, although abortion is controversial it doesn’t have to be. Abortion truly has the health and wellbeing of all parties underprotection.