“Anti-abortionists, what do you want for America? What is your vision for our country? You post here often and you are welcome. But I cannot fathom what you actually want. Do you want women imprisoned and forced to give birth? Do you want every miscarriage investigated as a potential homicide? Do you want abortion doctors and nurses sent to prison for murder? If you had absolute power, what kind of state would you create? I am asking this sincerely. We see your posts all the time on this page, but I cannot discover what your vision for America truly is. (I hope anti-abortionists on the page will respond sincerely.)” [Anne Rice]
We want an administration that respects all human life, born and unborn, and works to build bridges of healing and education to further that position. Neither political party is perfect and there is much healing to be done. Our president is our leader and in that capacity it is his awesome responsibility to be the first one to extend the olive branch of healing and invite a roundtable of dialogue between all parties. We want to see this country reject a socialized healthcare plan that juxtaposes humanity against economics and soundly rejects the idea that the unborn child is a burden, economically or otherwise, or that the prospect of an unplanned child is “punishment”. The prospect of unplanned motherhood has successfully been so pathologized that we forget or ignore that the overwhelming majority of females who have their baby express relief that they did not abort – but many of those who aborted express guilt and regret that they chose to kill their baby.
The human being simply was not designed cerebrally, socioculturally, emotionally, spiritually, psychologically, to be able to easily and consciously live with the deliberate killing of an unborn (or any) innocent and defenseless human being, and when we do it, we see again and again the complications of it.
Our vision for this country is a president who will work incredibly hard to heal the anger and hurt in this country, party against party, personal opinions and walks of life against those that differ; a country where differing lifestyles, religious beliefs, opinions, etc. are respected. A vision that will help restore the importance of the family unit, and help people take pride in honor and integrity and commitment to family.
Thank you, sincerely, for welcoming us and inviting dialogue about abortion, Ms. Rice. With all due respect, the first thing you can do, if you genuinely encourage open dialogue, is to stop divisively calling us by the propagandic and divisive term “anti-abortionists”. We support human life and respect humanity; there is no “anti-“ in that whatsoever. As people who respect all human life and intelligently recognize the scientific and medical communities’ long-established statements that the unborn fetus is in fact a human being, we as well recognize that the definition of “abortion” is the intentional murder of that unborn, alive human being. That is simply an irrefutable, proven fact regardless how carefully it is hidden behind a mantra of women’s “rights”, or “freedom”, or “no one can tell me what to do with my body”, etc.
What we “want”? We want the intentional, deliberate murder of the unborn human being to cease, as well as its clever misrepresentation as “reproductive freedom”, “a woman’s choice”, and “healthcare”. Abortion is not healthcare, and is irresponsibly cited as justification for its legalization as protection of a pregnant woman’s life, when in actuality abortions performed to save a woman’s life are a negligible 1-3%. This extrapolates into over 90% of abortions performed for reasons no more noble than sheer convenience, and this has been cited by no less than the Guttmacher Institute, itself a research arm of Planned Parenthood.
We want better “choices” for girls and women than only abortion. We want this profitable abortion industry to help girls and women by working alongside us in continuing the work we are already doing across the country in over 3,000 CPCs, which we do free of charge, helping girls and women have the confidence and actual resources to carry out their pregnancies and new motherhood. For an industry and position that touts itself as caring for women and demands they have choices, it certainly doesn’t offer much if any – outside of abortion – and neither does it help them very much if they do want to have their baby.
We want the abortion industry to cease claiming it respects females – and then vigorously fights legislation that would require its transparency, monitoring, licensing, regulation, inspections of its facilities, prudent and dignified medical as well as psychological/psychiatric care for aborting females. Many abortion clinics in this country are practicing so-called “medicine” in unsafe conditions, in non-ADA-approved facilities, by abortion doctors who have already contributed to the deaths of other females in other states and are at risk of losing their medical license. Further, there have been cases where abortion clinics were legally sanctioned for repeated refusal to responsibly provide proper emergency medical equipment and death/injury resulted because of it. Perhaps you already realize that last month a 24 year-old young fiancé and mother died at Chicago’s Planned Parenthood after hemorrhaging for five hours before she was, finally, transported to the hospital where she died hours later. This does not seem to be prudent medical care.
This industry, for all its purported “respect” for girls and women, promptly abandons them after their abortion. Females by the tens of thousands are suffering for almost a lifetime from post-abortion syndrome and this industry not only steadfastly refuses to help them in any way, it deftly subverts clinical research into PAS and consistently denies PAS as a legitimate disorder. By doing so it only prolongs and obfuscates the healing process of females who have had abortions. It virtually ignores them when they suffer symptoms such as depression, suicidal ideation, failed relationships, self-mutilation, substance abuse, all of which have been clinically related to post-abortion difficulties expressed by those women themselves. The abortion industry remains nearly silent on this. This in no way “respects” women – and nor is it anything remotely related to “healthcare”, whether medical or psychological.
We want the abortion industry to honor women, their intelligence, their humanity, their dignity, by practicing truly “informed” consent – to cease couching the showing of an ultrasound pre-abortion as “invasive”, when it astutely already realizes that over half of females change their minds and reject abortion once they see that ultrasound of their living, moving unborn child. This alone is an indication that females instinctively understand that they are carrying a living human being and that it is ethically and morally wrong to kill it. There is nothing “invasive” about showing an ultrasound to a pregnant female when she presents for an abortion. What is dismissive and imperious to females is deciding, for them, that they “don’t want or need” to see it.
No one can intelligently disagree that the decision to murder one’s own unborn child, regardless of the reason, is the singularly most critical decision one will make in their lifetime. Women deserve the dignity and respect of affording them all possible clinical, psychological, biological, economic, etc. information possible about what is really taking place – and how it very well may affect her even decades later – something the abortion industry persistently refuses to address or help heal. Girls and women are simply not being afforded this human right and this dignity and respect anywhere near as much as they by all human rights are supposed to be. Anyone who genuinely, truly respects and cares for women, for humanity itself, will demand this – and this does not require embracing the pro-life position to do so, either.
We want girls who are considering abortion to be protected better than they are by this abortion industry – an industry that has fought hard to help that minor, incredibly vulnerable and naïve teenage little girl have an abortion behind her parents’ back and even against their permission if they do know about it. This child usually cannot even spell the word “septicemia”, let alone have the maturity and simple medical knowledge on how to monitor for life-threatening symptoms of this complication that can easily appear post-abortion (let alone all other myriad of complications). This is a veritable child and this industry that continues claiming that it “respects” females virtually abandons that child after that abortion. By excluding her family it virtually isolates that girl unto herself, away from the support of those she needs most (even if she doesn’t agree). “Helping” a teenage girl deliberately go against her parents and/or lie to her parents, sometimes even transporting across state lines dishonestly, in no way whatsoever respects her, respects her family relationship, and only helps to destroy the trust between she and her parents, sometimes permanently. It also immediately and imperiously assumes that the parents are neither willing nor able to help their daughter carry out her pregnancy and young motherhood in dignity and successfully.
It assumes that it, as a profitable industry, knows that girl better than her own parents do, and it refuses to do virtually anything to help that pregnant little girl and her parents sit down at the table and mediate, work together to find real, workable solutions that are out there if this industry will only promote a foundation of openness, candor, dignity and supporting the family as a unit in this time of crisis. By doing so it resolutely refuses to acknowledge and respect the fact that the family unit is the bedrock of society and when the family is destroyed, society is eventually destroyed.
We want to see the legal rights of the pregnant female who doesn’t want to have an abortion upheld as vigorously as are those of the pregnant female who does want an abortion. When those who advocate for abortion even for teenage girls turn their back and remain silent and refuse to help a teenage girl who was beaten and threatened by her own family members to have an abortion when she did not want one, and yet a female who does want one is protected legally, that is an undignified and unfair proof of the legal protection of all females, regardless of their stance on abortion.
We want the medical community, et al to cease encouraging pregnant mothers to abort their unborn child who has been diagnosed with a special-needs diagnosis (Down Syndrome, for example). This and other diagnoses have long been known to very often still result in a life of worth, value and dignity, productive and happy and yet approximately ninety percent of them are routinely aborted, often at the encouragement of the physician themself. This in no way respects human life and indeed damagingly promotes a philosophy that only the “perfect” human being “deserves” to live. Further, sometimes these prenatal diagnoses are in error and the child is born perfectly normal. Somewhat related is sex-selective abortion / gendercide. It is incredibly disingenuous and bizarre for an element of society that screams its “respect” and “love” of womanhood to remain curiously silent and wholly indifferent to the prevalent global issue of the deliberate killing of female fetuses and babies simply, and only, because they committed the cardinal sin of being female. What is remotely “pro-woman” about that? What message does this communicate to our sons and daughters about how women continue over the centuries to be regarded in this world?
We want the abortion industry, et al to finally acknowledge and educate the public that abortion has definitively, clinically been linked to heightened risk of child abuse to other/subsequent children of the post-abortive mother. There are as well some clinical studies that have suggested subsequent children of the post-abortive mother are at increased risk of learning disabilities and prematurity as well. These and other risks the abortion industry rarely if ever discusses with females considering abortion. Again, this is in no way reflective of truly informed, dignified choice, nor of genuine respect for women.
We want to see this very culture stop perpetuating the treatment and opinion of women themselves as somehow less than capable of handling unforeseen circumstances (in this instance, pregnancy and motherhood). Women are strong, intuitive, adaptive, flexible, intelligent, insightful. They are masters at adapting to unforeseen circumstances, including unplanned pregnancy. We must stop the wholesale and wildly irresponsible calling of pregnancy “disease”, or “illness”, and the automatic assumption that an unplanned pregnancy is by its very nature a disaster or will “destroy” a female’s future. What can and sometimes does, destroy her future is the act of abortion.
Of course we do not want women “imprisoned or forced to give birth”, nor “every miscarriage investigated as a potential homicide”. You have apparently given this much thought, and that is good. Many intelligent, thoughtful and caring people who support abortion rights themselves forthrightly say they know abortion is not medically or psychologically healthy and, given their own druthers, would like to see fewer of them occur. Neither “side” has all the answers but the pro-life side sees and acknowledges the often permanent damage done to the bodies, as well as the souls, of those who have aborted and wants to see better hope and options for females; that no female should have to feel she “has” to kill her own child in order to have a better life.
Respectfully, I think you are reducing this to a legalistic either-or situation, a scenario where, if abortion is ever (highly unlikely) rendered an illegal procedure, women will be arrested, prosecuted and penalized. It is difficult to envision this ever happening, thanks to the efforts of the millions of people, including Hollywood and this presidential administration itself, which have both publicly stated an intent to continue efforts to keep abortion legal in this country (yet offer virtually no solutions or help for the deep problems that abortion has and continues to cause). Just as much as we decry the sight of an already-incarcerated pregnant prisoner forced to give birth while shackled to her hospital bed, neither would we ever want to see a woman prosecuted or imprisoned / forced to give birth. What are your suggestions? What are your suggestions for helping girls and women avoid abortion? Adoption is an option for those females who genuinely do not wish to become mothers and there is nothing wrong with a man or woman who intelligently, as an informed choice, resolutely expresses the wish to never be a parent. For those persons we would suggest sterilization as an option, which would for all intents and purposes eliminates the possibility of an unplanned pregnancy.
Those who support abortion glibly use the statement, “Don’t want an abortion? Don’t have one!” In response to that, we would respectfully suggest, “Don’t want to ever be a parent? Then don’t. Get sterilized or surrender your born child for adoption.”
Many parents , if their unborn child is diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, are immediately given the option, and are sometimes even coerced, to abort their baby. Most of them who refuse abortion go ahead and have their baby, even if they already know that sadly it may likely only live for a few hours or days due to its diagnosis. Almost all of them later report that even in their bereavement they still would not change their mind retroactively and have aborted, and state that abortion would have only exacerbated their grief and the healing process. Their baby died an expected death on its own, and was not murdered. Grieving an ill baby and its demise is terribly difficult enough but allowing for this instead of killing it does not add the sometimes permanent turmoil of post-abortion pathological symptomatology on top of natural, normal grief.
We don’t know all the answers for how to best create an abortion-less culture, and neither do supporters of abortion. We in no manner whatsoever are intent upon stripping women of their rights, their autonomy, by removing the idea that abortion is a valid option. Genuinely, we don’t know all the answers on how to help women if abortion should ever be illegal (which it most certainly won’t be in the foreseeable future). What is important, is that we diligently try to sit down together and come up with solutions that help girls and women feel they can have a life of value and dignity without believing, or being told, they should kill their child in order to do so. This society absolutely cannot tell women they are valuable human beings and equal to men – and in the next breath tell them they should consider killing a living human being as a means to be strong and empowered. Men aren’t faced with these choices although they contribute half of that pregnancy.
We want to see a society where ever-newly-burgeoning technological advances never outpace ethics, compassion, dignity, and respect for all human life, which seems to already horribly so be the case. Already the legalization of abortion has, predictably, begun moving in a direction of the potential of accepted infanticide for any reason, or for no reason. Once we begin imperiously taking it upon ourselves to decide who lives and who dies, and establish a kind of algorithm, if you will, for it, creating justifications for why one should die, humanity begins, inexorably, to lose its respect for all life. It seems that as times passes we will increasingly be expected to justify our very existence. If we are dependent, whether through illness, injury, infancy, etc. we incur the risk of being regarded an economic and societal burden and, therefore, our elimination can be warranted.
We are already seeing debates on organ donation vs. harvesting (China routinely practices the forced harvesting and euthanasia on many of its prisoners, incarcerated human beings who were not asked for their permission to donate. They are anesthetized, vital organs harvested, and often euthanized afterward). What is to say it won’t happen in this country? Where is the line? Where do we prudently stop ourselves? Once a movement begins, once a procedure such as abortion is legalized and promoted as a “remedy”, and painted up and couched as “healthcare”, it only paves the way to “justification” for more disregard for human life – this progression almost always moves inexorably forward, not backward.
We weren’t designed as human beings to take human life – and then be able to easily justify it to others or to ourselves. We possess compassion. We human beings have a conscience, a superego¸ an “inner voice”. It is only the pathological, psychologically-abnormal DSM-IV-cited condition of sociopathy that can manage to quite successfully exist on this planet wholly without a conscience. Somewhere deep inside the recesses of even the conscience of the person who supports abortion is the almost instinctive knowledge that the unborn being is human, is a person. We posit that, since it is in fact human, of the species Homo sapiens, then it is a person. And if a person, then it is afforded those unalienable rights guaranteed by the U.S. Declaration of Independence. It is only that element of society that supports abortion that can manage to deftly ignore and deny these facts.
Countless people have attempted, in the face of all reason and clinical knowledge otherwise, to claim that the unborn fetus does not become human until birth. We respectfully insist upon clinical evidence to support this theory; i.e. cite even one peer-reviewed clinical example where the pregnant human female carried a non-human fetus successfully, and likewise prove where even one unborn being possessed non-human DNA and a non-human genetic structure. We further insist upon clinical evidence documenting the precise moment when during birth that humanity supposedly results, and how it so, complete with clinical details. Others have cited the stage of viability as a “cutoff” for condoning abortion. To this we would respond that medical advancements have helped to foster viability sooner rather than later and would pose the question of how the unborn child deserves to be killed the day before viability, but not the day after. What changed, other than viability? The fact that the unborn child is totally dependent upon its mother ostensibly renders it less worthy of life, suggesting that the act of dependency is wrong and an offense against society. Society is known for how it treats its most vulnerable citizens. If dependency is justification for killing an unborn human being, then the logic of this argument suggests that the bigger we are, the more deserving we are of living – and if by illness or injury at any moment we are rendered weak or dependent, we ourselves can justifiably be killed.
Consider the progression – where once we debated if the unborn being was even human at all, medicine and science resolved that a long time ago. Now that we know the unborn being is in fact human because objective and clinical science itself has confirmed so, and we still want abortion on demand (and often without apology), we have to find another way to justify the intentional murder of the unborn human being: So we in effect go backwards….we can no longer cogently use the “unborn equates to un-human” argument, so we now resort to the “personhood” argument; i.e. if a being is not sentient it does not merit personhood. Are we really going to intelligently claim that a dolphin or an android deserves personhood while the unborn human being does not? This is a pristine example where we as a society have deeply failed to use our knowledge of proven, objective fact and are indeed manipulating fact into what we so desperately want it to be. We have even reached the unbelievable, horrifying stage where we are nearly ready to bestow legal personhood status upon computers – failing (refusing) to acknowledge that without the human’s mind and technological prowess behind it, that computer is merely a pile of so much metal and plastic. Proof that we can possess more intellect than common sense.
We humans love, hate, cry, laugh, plan, reason, regret, dream, rage, hope, rest, remember, forget, manipulate, lie, plot, care…..can a computer do any of these things at the depth the human being is capable of? Is there a computer that can perform these acts without a human being designing it to do so? Juxtapose a six year-old with a hammer for five minutes alone against a computer and see how proficiently that computer can carry out any of these human facilities then.
Remember the Dred Scott iconic case about slavery? Note the parallels between the slave and the unborn human being. To wit, the objective slave was alternately, subjectively considered about 3/8ths of a human being, less than fully human, chattel and property of the white “fully” human being. The objective unborn fetus has been alternately subjectively considered a “clump of cells and nothing more”, “not human in utero”, a “parasite”, among other dismissive adjectives. Note how the objective, unchanging slave, and the the objective, unchanging unborn being never changed – only the subjective, whim-like opinions of them both changed.
Where is the line where we slow down and take daddy’s loaded gun out of the child’s giddy hand and stop and soberly ask ourselves as a society if simply because we can do something, does it necessarily follow that we should? Should we endorse the intentional murder of an unborn human being, simply because we can’t or won’t come up with a better solution for resolving its existence? Are we really that lazy and without resources? We limit ourselves as a very class of humanity when we can’t come up with anything better than telling a female it is “empowering” or “reproductive freedom” to kill her child so she can have a better life.
The act of abortion damages the soul and it trades one “problem” for sometimes a lifetime of problems. We are not helping girls and women the way we should. In spite of the vastly-increased, widespread availability of contraceptives, sometimes even free of charge, females are still getting pregnant and having abortions on an absolutely massive scale. It is impossible to believe that they are all getting pregnant due to faulty contraception. Many girls say they want a baby so it can love them (code for “meeting their unmet needs”), when a baby or child is never supposed to be responsible for meeting someone else’s needs. We’re supposed to meet their needs. When girls and women are having sometimes 4, 5, 6, 7 abortions and they “say” they laugh about it….something is deeply wrong here that the legalization of abortion never will fix. There is a hole in that female’s soul that no “reproductive freedom” or “women’s right to abortion” is ever going to heal.
Abortion has been touted as the end-all, be-all panacea to a plethora of both pesky and major problems females face and to kill one’s own child is simply not the best answer to those problems, ever. We have to find better, more workable and practical answers where no one has to die so that a female can have a better life – and those solutions are incumbent upon both our sides, not just the pro-life side. In an intelligent, insightful, creative and compassionate society certainly we can do this if we make up our minds against the idea that using the senseless death of an unborn human being is justification to promote our so-called “rights” as women. Exactly how “empowering” is it, really, that causing the death of a human being is what it takes to “empower” us? How far are we going to take an entitlement mentality that screams “me, me me” – running roughshod over the life of another human being we ourselves created and knew in advance ran the risk of being created?
We want to see those who support abortion step up to the plate and help those females who are so often coerced into abortion against their will, often by their parents and/or significant male. In the cases where parents aren’t supportive, there needs to be other interventions, education, support, help – both our sides can offer this. In the cases where a significant male has threatened / pressured a female into abortion, we would posit this sometimes meets the criteria for a domestic abuse situation, particularly since homicide is a leading cause of death to pregnant females. If a male is threatening a female into having an abortion against her will, chances are he will most likely abandon her anyway, if not worse. Both of our sides can – morally and ethically must – help her in this situation. No female should ever feel she has to kill her unborn child in order to keep a boyfriend/husband around, or to avoid being beaten, etc. We want this abortion industry to better protect girls and women in these circumstances, and stop performing abortions on girls and women who are plainly coerced into it against their will; it is the human as well as legal responsibility of an ethical medical practitioner to work hard to discern this.
The sheer ugly fact is that abortion is not healthcare, and it damages girls and women on a medical, psychological, spiritual level. We aren’t doing enough to address those needs and the abortion industry is virtually ignoring those real, expressed needs. That alone rejects it being called “healthcare”. Abortion providers are usually motivated by money and no female ever should suffer because this profitable industry seems more interested in promoting abortion over non-abortion options, especially when it performs about 400 abortions for money for every one free adoption referral. This fact, in and of itself, plainly suggests that money is the motivating incentive here, not the health and worth and dignity of the pregnant female patient.
This industry absolutely must cease calling itself “healthcare”. Abortion doctors are resolutely ignoring the ancient and sacred Hippocratic Oath, which clearly promises that no doctor will participate in the act of abortion. Legitimate and ethical healthcare is absolutely morally called upon to uphold and respect all human life, born and unborn.
Ms. Rice, what are your answers to these intelligent, cogent questions you posed? How do you propose we stop telling girls and women that killing their own is a workable solution? How can we work together on this to help girls and women have better options than abortion? How do you suggest that those who support abortion responsibly help them also have “choices” other than abortion?
I am personally formerly pro-choice and supported the option of abortion for any reason and no reason. I am also myself a post-abortive woman. I discovered that the more I learned about the ugly truth and hypocrisy of abortion, how undignified and damaging it so often is to girls and women, how dishonestly it is represented, how profitable it is, among so many other reasons, I could no longer support it – as much as I wanted to. I vigorously support women’s rights, including women’s rights about her own body. But the unborn fetus is a biologically, medically, genetically, scientifically separate human being than its mother and her rights stop at that separate, different human being. As much as I didn’t want to admit that on any level, the more I learned the less I was able to maintain that stance; it simply is irrefutable. I am a feminist. I am a nurse. I am educated. I am informed. I am compassionate. I am responsible. I care for girls and women and I care more for them than to want abortion for them.
I and so many thousands and thousands and thousands of girls and women know the medical and psychological and spiritual damage up close that abortion causes. Abortion is no friend to women; it rapes the soul of the mother while it kills her unborn child. I am also surgically sterile after medical complications after my abortion. I have heard too many girls and women cry and say, “If only they had told me this, or that, part….they never told me….” to ever support abortion – and in the same sentence say that I respect girls and women.
Ms. Rice, thank you for inviting dialogue about abortion. You asked, we answered. It is refreshing to hear someone who hopefully is genuinely interested in a respectful roundtable discussion.
Response-portion to Anne Rice Intellectual Property of Mary Anne. All Rights Reserved. (Posted on Anne Rice’s FB page 8.17.12)