Protect the right to choose

Photo by The Telegraph

Madeline Miller

No one wants an abortion. It is a simple fact. No one wakes up the day of their procedure excited to get an abortion. But for many, abortion is a necessity.

Anti-abortion protesters would like to strip individuals of their right to access this necessity. All in the name of “life.” But what about the life of the woman?

They truly believe that the rights of a human being who has never taken a single breath are more important than the rights of the person with thoughts, a past, relationships and emotions that would be forced to renounce her bodily autonomy to accommodate the fetus.

So-called “pro-lifers” don’t support babies after they are born into poverty or as a minority. Their support stops the second that fetus becomes a person, so why should we force a child on someone who does not want and/or cannot support one.

According to the National Center for Children in Poverty, there are 15 million children in the United States alone living in families below the federal poverty threshold. That is 21% of American children.

But instead of helping those children, these people have decided to protest something that will likely keep that number from growing.

The women that go to an abortion clinic are already dealing with what is likely the most difficult decision of their lives, only to be faced with bloody signs, “die-ins” and screaming in their faces. The more peaceful and less disturbing protests include the Life Chain, taking place across the country Oct. 1, including in Omaha on 72nd and Dodge.

The protests support the removal of individuals’ rights to bodily autonomy, making a pregnant woman nothing more than a vessel for bringing more children into the world. This dehumanizes women in the eyes of the law and the eyes of other citizens.

Anti-abortion advocates believe that life begins at conception, but it’s not nearly that black and white. Every baby born should be wanted. They should be loved and cared for. A baby should not be a punishment for being sexual.

Women should be allowed to do what is best for them without horrifying images and intimidating words making the hardest decision of their life infinitely more difficult.

Anti-abortion protesters should not be allowed within a hundred feet of an abortion clinic for mental and emotional well-being of the clinic’s patients.

Instead of campaigning against abortion, protesters should focus their efforts on something that is more likely to make a difference: comprehensive sex education and access to birth control.

Both these things have the potential to significantly reduce abortion rates, and yet they are largely ignored as issues worthy of anti-abortion advocates’ focus.

Instead of cutting a woman off at her rights, allow her to prevent unwanted pregnancies in the first place with the knowledge and means to do so.

Anti-abortion advocates need to remember that no one wants an abortion. No one seeks out an unwanted or dangerous pregnancy. These women are people, too. They deserve your love and compassion. They deserve a choice unencumbered by the weight of people who hate their right to choose.