By Teona

There is a secret war going on. Now I could be exaggerating, but truthfully this issue is highly controversial. This war is not a particularly violent war, but violence has been woven deep within the issue. Words are being used as weapons, along with picket signs and hours of protests. I watched the documentary called “After Tiller” last week. Basically, a late-term abortion provider named George Tiller was shot dead in his church. Tiller has faced many death threats and has been targeted multiple times at his office. With Tiller gone there are only four late term abortion providers left in the country and they all face violence and the possibility of being murdered. The movie made me think about why people feel the need to take action in preventing abortion, whether it is violent or not. What makes people think that it’s okay to prevent someone from making a choice?

We have all seen the pictures. The ones that pop up on your newsfeed on Facebook and ask for “likes” if you hate abortion or “ignore” if you want to go to hell. The picture is usually of small baby body parts, like a head, covered in blood. These images give people the standard “abortion view.” First off, these images are not wrong, but they are rare. That’s not what a majority of abortions look like-not even close! It would be like showing an alien a picture of a read head and telling him that all humans look like this. Humans are not in this alien’s field of knowledge, how is he supposed to know? There is a clear information and communication barrier. People tend to judge and act based on what they see or hear, even if what they see or hear is not the full truth.

Another communication-information barrier that these pictures fail to show is why these women had abortions. Some women had situation when they couldn’t or didn’t want to have the child. This is where those others guys say, “duh, adoption is an option.” No it’s not “duh”. There is a plethora of fetal abnormalities that can happen. A woman may want to prevent her baby from having a difficult or painful life. Then, one has to factor in financial situations; does this person have enough money to take care of this child? She may already have children. Women still have to carry the child full term if she decides to continue with the pregnancy. That’s nine months a woman had to carry an unwanted baby. Who are you to say that women have to have a child? More importantly, who’s going to guarantee the actual adoption of the baby? We have to take into account the overall life of the child and not just everything up to birth. For this reason anti-choice is not “pro-life” they are “pro-birth”, they just want the child to be born. In addition the physical and mental connection that a woman has with the one growing inside her can be strong. This can cause the mother to want to keep the child even though she knows she cannot take care of it. The saying, “adoption is an option” has some truth to it. Adoption is an option, but it may not be her option.

Some people may totally renounce the very thought of abortion, and to me that’s fine. Everyone, no matter how outrageous is entitled to believe whatever their hearts desire. The conflict arises when people act on their beliefs, especially when their opinions bar someone from seeking a safe medical procedure that has nothing to do with them. I’ve rarely used the term “anti-abortion” when I talk about the opposing party. I like the term “anti –choice”, they are trying to eliminate a possible choice that a woman could have. Anti-choice try to prevent women from exploring all their choices, whether it is adoption, abortion, or keeping the child. To prevent a woman from making a personal choice that can affect her in many ways is unacceptable. Similarly I consider myself “pro-choice” and not “pro-abortion” because I believe a woman should have every option available to her. A woman may not want to have an abortion, but to know that the option is available to her will help her make the best possible choice. Yeah, yeah, “what about the baby’s choice?” “The baby has no “choice.” Actually the baby is literally unable to make a choice. I find it beyond creepy that anti-choice act as baby whisperers. They can apparently hear the hushed whispers of a mother’s womb and determine that the baby wants to be born. As a parent or pregnant person, only you can make that decision.

I can almost hear the anti-choice yelling “put on a condom! Use some birth control!” We all should know birth control and condoms are not 100% effective, there is room for human error. Then there is abstinence. The only thing that I can say about abstinence is “let’s be realistic.” Let’s be realistic about all of this, people find themselves between a rock and a hard place and need to explore all their decisions. The anti-choice have no right to prevent you from carrying out a decision that you have chosen, especially when it has nothing to do with them. So I commend Dr. Tiller and his allies for making abortion a safe option.