Sunday, March 10, 2013

First Reader: Women Know Something You Don't

This article discussed the history of abortion and contraception, focusing on the ways in which women shared information with each other and made decisions regarding their pregnancies without the input of men. The article emphasized the fact that this has been going on for thousands of years. Whether the contraceptives or abortifacents were safe or not, women used them to avoid the risks associated with pregnancy. The author also discusses the legal repercussions of outlawing birth control and abortions. She says that outlawing these things would only increase abortion rates and abortion-related health problems. This claim is supported by the fact that women have been using contraceptives and abortifacents for so long, whether they were legal or not. In fact, she mentions that rates of abortion have been shown to be lower when abortion is legal than when it is not.

I absolutely agree with this article, and I think that it brings up excellent points about the history of contraception and abortion. I believe that women should have the freedom to choose what to do with their bodies, but even someone who considers themselves "pro-life" could see reason in this article. The debate over abortion is not between pro-choice and pro-life, but pro-choice and anti-choice. Being pro-choice is not equivalent to being anti-life. On the contrary, allowing women the freedom of choice actually decreases unwanted pregnancies and abortions, increasing the number of lives saved. "Pro-lifers: would actually find that their agendas are carried out more effectively by using the methods of "pro-choicers."


  1. I couldn't have said this better myself! I find myself constantly frustrated with the politics surrounding these debates. Decisions regarding contraception should be made by the individual, for no one has the right to deny people the choice on what happens to their own bodies. Ideological and moral arguments can still factor in, but in the end, what matters most is that each person makes a fully informed and independent decision. What troubles me is that often times information as thorough as this article is not readily available. What is worse, there is so much misinformation out there, spread for political campaigns. Pro-life and pro-choice have no place in the political sphere, for what happens to your body is a personal matter.

  2. Respondent:
    Hi Marina – I completely agree with what you have said in your post. Abortions have happened for thousands of years in the history of our species. Only recently has it become an issue. What a woman chooses to do with her pregnancy should be her decision, not the government’s. The article also brought up a good point in saying that by the standards some politicians wish to set in place, some forms contraception would also be illegal. Women should be able to take preventative measures so that they are less likely to find themselves considering an abortion, which has a large stigma attached to it. Contraception does not get criticized to anywhere near the level that abortion does by those who are opposed. I also was a fan of the statistic provided by the article. When abortions are legal, less of them take place compared to when they are illegal.
    I feel as though there are certain circumstances in particular that warrant abortion being an option for a female. If a woman was raped, why should she be expected to hold onto the result of such a traumatic experience? A woman should have a choice about what to do when it comes to her body. She is a human being and is entitled to make her own decisions. Let her choose.

  3. Respondent: The last paragraph where you mentioned anti-life and pro-life stood out to me the most. Every women should have the right to do as they please with their own body, but the argument that I hear the most is that the woman is killing a living thing, so is abortion the same as killing her baby after she has it. If some people would say yes then essentially they have no problem with government interference because the killing of a child (or anyone) whether she is the parent or not is against the law. If the government did not interfere with what you do with your children then that would give the parent the right to kill their child no matter what age they are. Throughout that entire child’s life s/he is her child so therefore whenever she wanted to she would have the right to kill him or cause harm to him with no problems with the law. If the government does not step in it at abortion then they should never step in. This is the kind of argument I hear from people who are “pro-government” and do not mind the government stepping in in order to create laws about abortion. I am still not sure which one I believe because on one hand it is the women’s body then on the other hand it is someone else’s life.