I will remember the slogan “Abortion on demand and without apology” for the rest of my life.
At AU, people who advocate for the anti-abortion movement or even moderate opinions on abortion are vilified. It is high time AU students hear an opposing viewpoint and show the intellectual maturity to have a discussion about abortion. Having a civilized debate about the rights of the mother and the child is long overdue. AU needs to hear the other side of the abortion debate.
Few realize the intimate historical connection between institutions such as Planned Parenthood and the social Darwinism movement in the U.S. Advocates for abortion and the birth control pill often advocated forced sterilization for the sake of racial hygiene. They also argued the certain races are superior.
As a Jew, I feel deeply uncomfortable with humans deciding which lives are worthy enough to exist. On some level it reminds me of the Nazis. In fact, the American eugenics movement was inspired the Nazis. It is important to acknowledge that abortion is the decision to destroy human life based on someone’s judgment of either the quality of life for the future person or the inconvenience that having a baby will be to the mother.
The unborn are incapable of defending themselves. What if genetic testing for the gay gene becomes available? What’s to stop people who are arrogant enough to assume that their gay child is defective from making the decision to abort? How can we say that Gendercide in India, China, and around the globe is OK? We are a profoundly self-centered generation; we talk a lot about standing up for those who can’t speak for themselves on this campus, for those who are powerless and those who are persecuted because of their position in society. Yet, if someone was to argue that we should protect the unborn, they would be automatically deemed a chauvinist.
Pro-abortion advocates will argue that children that will be born with handicaps, mental retardation or health problems are going to have a reduced quality of life or could be problematic for mothers. A very close friend of mine was supposed to be born with Down syndrome, and the doctors recommended she be aborted. Guess who does not have Down syndrome? My sister was supposed to be born brain dead. Guess who is not brain dead?
Doctors can be wrong. Who are we to say that someone with Down syndrome is not worthy of living?
I recognize that there are cases where abortion is morally acceptable. What I oppose is treating abortion solely as the mother’s prerogative. Human life may start out as a mass of cells, but it is still human life, and this is a truth that we have to acknowledge. Think about how different your life could be, how many friends and relatives could have been lost.
This debate is multi-faceted and is a debate worth having. It deserves more than being reduced to intellectually lazy slogans on both sides. The anti-abortion movement has legitimate points that deserve to be heard, rather than simply being written off as the views of religious extremists.
Andy Wallin is a junior in the School of International Service.