So you want to call yourself “pro-life”
Okay. I get it. You don’t like abortions. A fertilized egg is the same thing as an adult human being. Abortion makes you sad. And you want to put a stop to abortions in America.
Now, you can do it the easier way. The way countless dumbshits have done it since the beginning of time: attempt to make it illegal and figure now everyone has to “deal with the consequences” of having sex.
But that’s not pro-life. To be “pro-life,” you have to actually give a shit about the life of the person, not just whether or not they’re born. If you say “Tough shit, you’re on your own” as soon as the pregnant person is denied an abortion, you can’t call yourself pro-life.
You wanna be pro-life?
Then you’d better:
- Support paid maternity and paternity leave.
- Support a minimum wage increase so that one person can comfortably and safely provide for a household.
- Support increased funding for public schools (which includes a living wage for teachers!)
- Support government funding for before- and after-school programs for children living in a single-parent household.
- Be in favor of socialized health care. This especially includes free or affordable access to birth control and prenatal care, but extends to everyone for the duration of their lives. Those things you claim to be campaigning to preserve and protect. This includes mental health care.
- Be in favor of disability payments being large enough for the payee to live a safe and comfortable life (and cutting the $5,000 in the bank and you’re cut off rule off while you’re at it).
- Accept that this shit is going to cost taxpayer money. Recognize that if you truly believe that life is precious, and that ending abortion is killing babies, it should be worth it to you.
- Quit spreading lies and misinformation about birth control. The more people who have access to birth control, the fewer unplanned pregnancies. It’s not rocket science.
- Fight against rapist and abusers’ inherent parental rights so no one feels an abortion is their only option to be safe.
- Fight for the rights of birth parents and adoptive parents in adoption.
- Protect the rights and lives of immigrants and refugees. “All lives matter,” remember? Support the religious minority communities in your area and stand up for them when they’re attacked. This includes Native communities; this includes religions you don’t personally like.
- Pay more than lip service to the ideas of gender and racial equality. Accept that sexism and racism are still prevalent in American society. Recognize your privilege and use it to help others. Racism isn’t “over,” slavery isn’t something people should “get over,” the wage gap is real, and there’s no such thing as reverse racism. Accept that leveling the playing field isn’t unfair to white males.
- Vacate the voluntourism industry and use those thousands of dollars you pay to make yourself feel good to actually help people in those countries if you want to “be a blessing” to them. Plenty of better-qualified people have written extensively on why this is a must-do.
- Hold the police responsible for use of excessive force and assault.
- Advocate for those unfairly imprisoned.
- Protest the exploitation of current and former prisoners, immigrants and the disabled in the workforce.
- Support all marriage rights. Your religion doesn’t matter to anyone but you;
the government benefits to legal marriage matter to everyone.
- Recognize that TRANS LIVES ARE VALID. TRANS LIVES MATTER.
And finally, accept that the pregnant person and the fetus cannot possibly have equal rights. Understand that abortions are going to be necessary sometimes.
If a person is trying to flee an abusive spouse, it may not be safe for them to remain pregnant, and THEIR LIFE MATTERS.
If an eleven-year-old is impregnated by a family member, THEIR LIFE MATTERS.
If someone whose medications cause birth defects cannot abstain from medication for nine months, THEIR LIFE MATTERS.
If someone has severe PTSD that would be triggered by pregnancy and childbirth, THEIR LIFE MATTERS.
If someone’s only means of support is physical labor that cannot safely be done while pregnant, THEIR LIFE MATTERS.
If someone cannot safely go through pregnancy and childbirth, THEIR LIFE MATTERS.
If someone is diagnosed with cancer after finding out about their pregnancy, THEIR LIFE MATTERS.
If someone is faced with the decision to terminate a pregnancy due to birth defects incompatible with life, regardless of the decision they make, THEIR LIFE MATTERS.
And ultimately, YOU do not get to decide that they matter more or less than their pregnancy.
Can you fight for these values and accept these things? Can you accept that this is NOT ABOUT YOU?
Do you still want to end the necessity of abortion in America? To make it as rare as humanly possible? Knowing that in some tragic circumstances it will be necessary for it to be a safe and legal procedure?
Congratulations, you’re pro-life.
If not, you’re a controlling asshole who wants to punish someone for getting pregnant.