September 10, 2021: What's missing in the conversation around abortion right now
With abortion in the news, here's one way to approach tough conversations.
The Texas abortion law is historic and continues to occupy conversation around the country. Texas celebs like the Founder of Bumble are creating funds to support choice. A UN representative said America is moving backward on women’s equality. Friends and colleagues are reposting heartfelt testimonies of support for abortion rights.
You may be wondering, is encouraging people to sue each other really the best way to protect life and help women? Is this the best we can do: a tip line and bounties on women seeking a desperate solution? Those are important and valid questions.
When the hard questions are filling up your newsfeed
A woman being raped is nothing less than sickening. A fatal prenatal diagnosis is the kind of heart-wrenching situation you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. A mother struggling to feed her children should make all of us reach for our own wallets.
These are all scenarios upheld as proof of the need for an abortion. And the thing is, they’re not wrong about the utterly cruel reality women in these situations are navigating.
It’s not that these arguments for abortion are “wrong” or even “invalid” — the problem is that they are incomplete.
Because they’re only acknowledging half of the situation, by focusing on only one of the two bodies involved in abortion. (And FWIW, groups that only focus on ‘saving babies’ are also incomplete, in failing to acknowledge women).
Helping someone by intentionally harming another person is never the answer.
But is that a person?
In some ways, the Texas law and other “heartbeat” legislation complicate the conversation around when life begins. Many people are asking: Is that tiny body truly a person? When (before, during, or after birth) is a person granted rights? These are important questions women deserve answers to before making a permanent choice.
The Catholic Church has been constant in her teaching that life begins at conception.
There is no human relationship quite like that between a mother and child in-utero. Pregnancy is a kind of biological vulnerability unlike anything else, and the fears and anxieties that many women experience when facing an unexpected or challenging pregnancy are legitimate.
Which is why we need support for moms now more than ever
This is a BIG issue. In order to alleviate some of the challenges pregnant women face, we need job protections, income stability, affordable child care, advocacy for sexual assault victims, community support whose actions are as loud as their promises, affordable and accessible maternity care, pediatric care, improved special needs services for children, affordable housing, a reformed foster care system, and more.
Even the US bishops this week expressed the importance of growing support for pregnant moms in Texas and elsewhere. Last year they launched a national movement for parishes to better support moms in need in their communities.
We all need to play our part to uphold the dignity and life of all people — babies in-utero, pregnant moms, families, and more. We’re just getting started.
Here are a few other top picks for the week...
READ: The Pope Debunks 12 Gender Role Myths
Women's value isn't in having babies, being passive, or taking a back seat to men in the Catholic Church. Here's what the head of the Church really said about women.
WATCH: Hush Documentary
This Amazon Prime documentary features a pro-choice woman investigating the link between abortion and breast cancer, and what she learns about women's health along the way.
FOLLOW: @Manwhohasitall on Twitter
This hilarious and thought-provoking satire account helps us keep a sense of humor while we scroll through the news on Twitter each week. Check it ot if you need an LOL.