Abortion is one of the most controversial issues in public affairs in most countries of the world: politicians, civil society and even leaders have spent the last decades issuing arguments for and against abortion that seem to be immune to people on the other side, because unfortunately the issue seems to have become more a defense of ideological positions, rather than a fight for or against abortion.
The right argues that the lives of the unborn should be protected, while the left says that women should be able to decide what to do with their pregnancies. However, both ideological camps are certainly not able to provide answers to the concerns generated from the opposite spectrum.
The left is not able to provide a solid answer as to why they believe that a woman should have the power to end the life of a person in her womb, while the right does not provide a solution to the many problems that are generated by the prohibition of abortion, for example: who takes care of an unwanted child? What kind of life conditions could it have? What kind of person could it become? And beyond that, does the State have the power to force a woman to continue her pregnancy?
Curiously, in the case of abortion, the ideological camps contradict their own positions: the right, which generally advocates greater individual freedoms in this case asks the State to legislate to prohibit abortion; and the left, which generally proposes that the State become a pater familias that determines what people can eat, produce, do, study and think, raise the banner of “freedoms”, and say that it is women who should “decide” about their bodies; an argument that by the way leftist rulers and politicians do not use when discussing vaccine mandates, there the “my body, my decision” does not exist.
Ideology takes precedence over the health of babies and women.
At present it would seem impossible to find a politician on the left who opposes abortion, as well as one on the right who declares that it is women who should decide; the President of the United States, Joe Biden, was for decades a fervent defender of the right to life, but with the radicalization of the Democratic Party to the left, he has now become a defender of women’s “right to choose”, so much so that his government has sued the conservative state of Texas to try to destroy legislation that prohibits abortion.
On the right, nonetheless, they have developed extremely rigid legislation with legal loopholes on how to respond to cases of rape and other types of pregnancies that far from being the result of carelessness, have been produced by violence and coercion; here it is worth asking, is it morally sensible to force a woman to give birth to the child of her rapist? What kind of emotional bond will that child have with its mother and family environment? What kind of life will it be able to have?
All these questions also add to the list of unintended consequences of government policies, protecting life is all very well, but, once again, who takes care of the unwanted child at birth?
Does banning abortion really save lives?
In the United States, both libertarians and conservatives share a common thesis: the State should not have a monopoly on violence as this would degenerate into tyranny, and therefore, citizens should not be prohibited access to weapons, as this is their defense mechanism.
However, beyond entering into a political-philosophical-ideological discussion on the carrying of weapons, the question is: would banning weapons really reduce violence, or would it simply create a black market where only criminals have access to them?
I shift this question to another area: drugs. For decades the United States has invested billions of dollars in its fight against drugs, and what has been the result of this war? More violence, millions of dollars wasted and an enormous amount of human resources wasted in an endless fight. Far from limiting drug consumption, it increases more and more, with more violence and bypassing State controls, but it does not disappear, it multiplies.
Now, let’s go back to abortion: will legislating to prohibit this act really make it disappear, or will it only encourage women to go to clinics or clandestine places to end the lives of their children? I think the answer is quite obvious: banning abortion will cause women to go to inappropriate places to have an abortion, or those with more resources will jump the borders of their state to have an abortion where it is allowed. There will also be a third group, those who will have their unwanted children and bring into the world little ones who will suffer the effects of the unwanted consequences of government policies and who will most likely grow up in a dysfunctional home.
What is my position on abortion?
No one can doubt that aborting a baby that already has a life of its own is a vile murder, and I do not say this, science says it. I personally consider that irresponsible women who are incapable of taking proper care of themselves, and who then go to a place to kill their children, should be brutally morally condemned. However, I do not believe that the State should legislate on abortion —neither for nor against— because, as I have been explaining, restrictive legislation brings with it a series of undesirable long-term consequences that have negative repercussions on the quality of life of children and of society itself.
According to the Guttmacher Institute “the abortion rate is 37 per 1,000 people in countries that totally prohibit abortion or allow it only in case of risk to the woman’s life, and 34 per 1,000 people in those that allow it”, which means that prohibitions do not really prevent abortions from occurring, but only cause them to take place in places that are less suitable for the procedure.
We already know that the “my body my choice” slogan of the left is hypocritical, if there is one thing progressivism does not respect, it is individual liberties and even that people can decide about their own bodies, as Joe Biden’s administration has demonstrated in the recent pandemic by imposing arbitrary and totalitarian mandates that force citizens to be vaccinated; however, I believe that government restrictions on abortion are not really the solution to a much more complex problem.
Abortion is not “a right” as is constantly written in the progressive press, abortion is a very sad and regrettable act where a human life is put to an end, however coercion and prohibitions always find alternative ways, this is well known to Americans as a product of the prohibition era that brought to the country devastating consequences in the social section; In my opinion, except in those cases where abortion is wanted because of rape, it will always be condemnable and aberrant, there is no way to make it up; but I insist, restrictive legislations are not the way to improve this reality.
I consider that efforts should be deeper in the educational field -at public and private level-, and even in family values and principles, but beyond that, a signed paper will not prevent the murder of thousands of babies.