Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Illogical Statements

I would like to comment on two letters “Bitter” and “Zip it Up,” that appeared in the Calgary Herald on Tuesday, October 4th. The link is www.calgaryherald.com. You'll have to cut/past to make it work.

The writer of “Bitter” implies that only teenaged girls produce babies afflicted with foetal alcohol syndrome or the related spectrum disorder. This is false. Sadly, mothers of FAS/FASD babies come from every part of society and from every child-bearing age group. To lay blame at the feet of teenaged girls is short-sighted and unfair. Such a belief allows people to ignore the realties of this preventable disability. It also allows those who fall outside that stereotype to continue hide behind their age, their status or their economic position.

On the issue of men commenting on abortion, “Zip it Up” includes the comment that men should keep their mouse caged. It is highly hypocritical for women to make strident claims for their reproductive rights, yet to continue to blame men for unplanned pregnancies.

If women are going to really and truly own their pro-choice stance, they must acknowledge and act on the truth that choice also includes doing everything necessary to not become pregnant if they don’t want to bear a child.

The median age for abortions (first and repeat) is 28. One would expect that, after a certain age, most women know what causes a pregnancy. This is absolutely an issue with an age demographic that knows better but doesn’t act.

Choice applies to both before and after the fact; however, choice applied before the fact will, in most cases, eliminate having to make a choice after the fact. A before-the-fact choice does little damage to a woman’s body and mind and certainly doesn’t leave another being dead.

The reality is this: women do have the right to manage their own reproduction and to have choices. However, women who do little or nothing to prevent a pregnancy have abdicated, plain and simple.

In a country where birth control information is free, legal and unlimited, and access to before-the-fact pregnancy prevention is available everywhere and to everyone, also often at no cost, there is no excuse for the majority of unplanned pregnancies. Far too many of those pregnancies result when women play Russian roulette with the bodies they claim to have dominion over. As such, placing blame anywhere else but on one’s own shoulders is simply wrong.

Women who ignore the extensive pregnancy prevention resources and choices available to them refuse responsible reproductive practice and reject responsibility for self.

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