A Third Option

     I’m getting tired of the lack of options when choosing sides in the abortion debate. Choice vs. Life. Life vs. Choice. That’s about it. When I was teaching college composition and my students were working on their “persuasive” papers, I even forbid the abortion topic. Why? Because there was nothing new that anyone could say that hadn’t been heard before. No matter which side of the debate we sit on, we know what the other side is going to argue, we know how we’ll respond, and then we know how they’ll respond to our responses. It’s ceased really to be a debate and has become just endless rhetoric. So that’s why I have decided to offer up a third choice so that we can once again make the abortion argument fresh and exciting: the Pro-abortion option.
     Wait, you say. That’s already one of the two choices. Not quite. “Pro-choice” is one of the two existing options, where a woman can choose whether to continue a pregnancy or not. Pro-abortion is different in that it advocates abortion itself, not choice. In fact, it more than advocates abortion. It all but mandates it for the good of the planet and society in general. Pro-abortion is a unique position in that it embraces the conservative belief that the government and society knows what’s better for a woman’s body than she does, yet it combines this belief with the fundamental Pro-choice notion that abortion really isn’t that bad. The Pro-abortion platform is about smart decisions and smart pregnancies, and who better to make those decisions and judgments than our duly elected government?
So what is the Pro-abortion position really? Fundamentally, it begins with the belief that the world is overcrowded and that too many people are having children before they are ready. While much of the logistics still need to be worked out, basically the Pro-abortion argument states that the state should decide when people should have children or not. If a woman finds herself pregnant and is not deemed ready, the pregnancy is terminated. This decision could be made through some sort of licensing program, a series of low-cost training seminars, a review board, etc. I’m sure the policy would vary from state to state, but the basic premise would be the same. Individuals or couples-and it wouldn’t matter whether they were gay or straight, married or single-would need to demonstrate that they are ready to raise a child: financially, emotionally, and psychologically. If not, the application to have a child is denied.
The Pro-abortion doctrine would also strictly limit the amount of children that people could have. Zero population growth would be absolutely required (i.e. two children or less per couple, one for an individual). Sorry, Mormons and Catholics, but more children that that and you’re just being selfish and environmentally unsound.
While sounding completely illogical and irrational, the Pro-abortion position is not without solid merit. Examine the following points:

1)      The degradation of the environment. Look at nearly all-if not all-of the existing environmental problems. Can’t they all be attributed to overpopulation? The more obvious problems easily can, such as the encroachment of society into rain forests and isolated woodlands. Even issues not caused directly by overpopulation, such as air and water pollution, are indirectly linked to our need to provide the most modern conveniences to an ever-growing number of people. Less people would mean less need for all of this. More people means more environmental destruction all around.

2)      The economy. A new abortion field would create tens of thousands of jobs across the country. Not just the doctors and nurses but the social workers and government officials who would decide who could have a family or not. And think of the need for new abortion clinics. The construction industry would boom as states raced to meet federally mandated abortion clinics per capita targets. The drug industry would also make a killing-no pun intended-as abortions would move away from a surgical practice and into a more chemical realm.

3)      Stable families. It’s no big secret that fucked up people generally have fucked up kids. The Pro-abortion campaign would largely eliminate this problem. Sure, there are always exceptions, where the fifteen-year-old girl has a child who ends up being a nuclear physicist. But it’s unlikely in most cases, and the Pro-abortion camp is all about what’s good for society in general. Parents would need to be ready to have a child, and they would have to prove that they are ready. Underage? Sorry. On welfare? Sorry again. Already have seven kids? Nope. Can’t point out West Virginia on a U.S. map? Denied. While the regulations and red tape might not catch 100% of the problems all the time, it would guarantee that a family has gone so far down the right road that their chances of succeeding are a whole lot better.

4)      The little things. Less traffic, no more overcrowded schools, less crime because of greater family stability, more toys to go around, lowered taxes because of the need to support fewer people, more pet adoptions since not all people who want kids could have them, a strengthening of the gene pool, and less urine in public swimming pools.

     Sure, there would be plenty of arguments from both of the existing sides of the abortion debate. The conservatives would cling to their life is sacred cry. And the Pro-abortion response: by golly, you’re right. Except that the Pro-abortionists would state that life in general is sacred, not just the life of a few measly cells in a woman’s uterus. Pro-abortion is really more Pro-Life than the Pro-life side. By having more children, women are slowly killing us all and destroying the planet. So the Pro-abortionist would argue that the greater common good comes first and that by killing these few cells, more life will be spared. And the conservatives, the same ones who have no problem sending our men and women off to give their lives in war for the common good, would have to agree. After all, life is sacred until we need it to save our skin, and then we’ll sacrifice whatever we need to in order to keep America safe and proud. And if conservatives tried to argue that the Pro-abortion argument was anti-family, the Pro-abortionists would show the exact opposite. It’s not anti-family; it’s about strong families. Only strong families would be allowed, and isn’t that exactly what the conservatives want?
     And the Pro-choice camp, what would they be getting out of this? Well, obviously not choice, that’s for sure. But let’s be honest here. Is the Pro-choice side really about choice, or is it about keeping abortion legal because some people are just too stupid not to get pregnant? “Choice” just makes the whole thing sound better. The “choice” really comes when people decide to fuck in the first place. If you don’t want to get pregnant, don’t fuck, or, image this, invest in some sort of birth control, any kind. Now I’m not talking about rape and incest cases, which in no means involve ANY choice on the woman’s part at the time of conception. Neither am I talking about those tragic cases where a pregnancy could lead to the death of the mother. Yes, there should always be a “choice” after the fact in these cases, and these horrible instances should be completely excluded from this argument here. But by and large, the existing Pro-choice position is already Pro-abortion. They don’t want choice so much as they want abortions. The Pro-abortion solution would give the Pro-choice side just that-more abortions than they could ever imagine. And it would relieve women from having to make that terrible “choice” if she found herself “accidentally” in a family way. The decision would already be made for them. So no matter how naďve a high school couple is, they’d be covered. Singles could go back to the good old days of screwing whomever they wanted whenever they wanted because the government would get their backs . . . er . . . fronts. Thought could completely go out the door-unless you wanted to worry about AIDS, but if you’re not worrying about getting pregnant, you’re obviously not worrying about AIDS either-and the world would be in a perfect, hedonistic bliss. And abortions would be plentiful and common, just like the Pro-choice camp really wants. People could continue to be stupid, and a system would be in place to cover this practiced stupidity. So what if some civil liberties would be violated? Aren’t we already giving them up in today’s society anyway so that we can be safe from terrorism? What are a few more rights? We’ve got plenty enough already.
     Think of the new debate that could come from this! No longer would there be only two camps outside of abortion clinics, screaming at each other. Off to one side, there would now be a third, somewhat strange camp. And this camp would be screaming just as loud, making the same illogical statements that the other two camps are. The political parties would be forced to re-evaluate the whole situation and decide which camp to join. Hopefully, the Pro-abortionists wouldn’t end up with the American Independent Party, which would be like saving up money for years to buy a car only to buy a Hyundai. The Pro-abortionists would definitely want one of the Big Two. That’s where the fun is.
     But most of all, my college students would be encouraged to write about abortion again because there would be something different, something fresh, and something just as stupid to captivate us. Bring it on, and get on board!

-- Ken Hughes,
December 5, 2002

 

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