This Is Why I'm Pro-Choice

The “pro-life versus pro-choice” controversy has been the center of heated political, religious, and social debate for quite some time. The argument is typically centered around the contentious topic of abortion. It’s important to note that fundamentally, the pro-choice and pro-life perspectives are not focused solely on abortion. To put it succinctly, people who are pro-life ultimately believe in the importance of preserving human life, while those who are pro-choice believe in the importance of individual autonomy.

When it boils down to the topic of abortion, there is a clear division in perspectives. Pro-lifers are generally vehemently against the act of abortion, as they believe it harms human life. Pro-choicers think women should have the option of abortion available to them since they believe humans have the right to autonomy. It’s important to note that “pro-choice” is not necessarily a synonym for “pro-abortion.” Some pro-choicers may be against abortion, but unlike many pro-lifers, they refrain from shoving that personal belief down the throats of others.

My primary reason for being pro-choice is simple: I believe in human rights.

Personal autonomy is a constitutional right. The only person who should ever be in control of a person’s body, choices, and rights, is that person him-or-herself. Women in particular already deal with enough things they shouldn’t have to, e.g. societal pressures telling them how to look and act, lack of respect in the workforce, slut-shaming. We don’t need anyone taking complete control of our personal lives and taking away our right to make individual decisions that won’t affect anyone’s life but our own.

Reproductive rights, a subset of human rights, are important for both women and men. Though there is more progress to be made, we have come a long way. Historically, women had little to no reproductive control and sexual education was essentially nonexistent. Today, we have increased sexual education, availability of birth control methods, and developed a more relaxed view on female sexuality. Delegalizing abortion would be a huge step backwards. In addition, it would lead to increased use of unsafe abortion methods, which would likely increase maternal mortality. We need to stop flip-flopping on the subject of reproductive rights. Reproductive rights should be secured for everyone.

I am pro-choice because there are valid reasons for getting abortions.

There are many cases where abortion is the best option for a woman. Among these are illness, rape, and incest. If a woman has a disease that she does not want to pass on to her child, or if she has some sort of illness that would put her life in jeopardy during pregnancy, she should be able to get an abortion. It seems rather hypocritical and ironic that some anti-abortion pro-lifers would excuse the loss of two lives if a mother were to die during pregnancy or childbirth. If a woman gets pregnant as a result of rape and/or incest, she should be able to get an abortion. There are some pro-lifers who agree with this, and they label such abortions as “excusable.”

But what about the women who simply don’t want a child or aren’t ready for a baby?

Abortion can be the best option for them, too. Parenting is a tremendous responsibility. Without proper preparation and financial means, one woman may opt for abortion upon finding out she is pregnant, while another woman may choose to keep the baby and do her best to raise it properly. Both choices should be perfectly acceptable!

I am pro-choice because a woman should be able to enjoy sex without being required to “face the consequences.” If pro-lifers are pro-life, why is it that some of them don’t seem to care about the life of a pregnant woman? Is the tiny collection of cells growing inside of her somehow more human than she is? Also, why don’t you ever hear people say that men should be required to “face the consequences” when they contribute to the pregnancy?


A fetus’ constitutional rights should not be prioritized over a woman’s constitutional rights, nor should the fetus even have constitutional rights.

I am pro-choice because a woman’s choice to get an abortion does not harm others. The only person potentially “harmed” by it is a sensitive pro-lifer, but whose fault is that? The fetus itself is not harmed because, as a collection of cells and tissues, it is not a human being.

Even everyone’s favorite scientist, Bill Nye the Science Guy, has stated that “fertilized eggs are not humans.” He discusses this in a video posted to Big Think’s Facebook page.

Here are some of the great points Bill made:

 

A common pro-choice argument is, “Imagine if someone took away your ability to live. Imagine not having a say in whether or not you want to have a life. When a woman gets an abortion, the baby’s whole future is demolished.”

To that, I say: Imagine if someone took away your right to autonomy. Imagine having practically no control over your life and not being able to choose what is best for you. Imagine your future being demolished because you were forced to have a child you weren’t ready for.

Abortion can be a physically and emotionally draining process for women. The last thing they need is to be disrespected for choosing to get one. They are not murderers. They are not evil. They are not heartless. They are human beings who don’t deserve to be shunned or looked down on for taking advantage of their autonomous rights.

One last thing: