This week I’ve decided to take on the hugely divisive topic of abortion (cue the public outcry). In the United States, we see politicians, special interest groups, lobbyists, and general members of society fight aggressively over a woman’s right to choose or lack thereof. We’ve seen Planned Parenthood attacked by the right wing and then endorsed by the left wing. And when it comes down to it, often we are asked, “Are you pro-life or pro-choice?” And I’m here to say neither. Because surprise, I don’t get an opinion. Or better yet, my opinion has no validity.
What leaves me aghast is the idea that a male dominated legal system thinks it has the necessary knowledge and experience to make laws regarding women’s health. Now, correct me if I’m wrong but if you are biologically a male, you have no uterus. Therefore, you cannot bear a child. So you literally know nothing of what carrying a child is like. So where does the idea that they have a say in the matter come from?
My position is that I don’t get to have a position. I don’t get to make decisions for and about women. I don’t get to tell a woman how her body works and how she should maintain it. I don’t get to sit and get angry at a woman for making a decision I can’t even fathom. I don’t get to tell a woman she has the right to choose. I don’t have the right to tell a woman that she can do what she will with her own body, I don’t get to say anything. Because I am not a woman.
Imagine if one day all the actors in Hollywood began telling doctors how to perform procedures. What if all doctors began telling pilots how to fly planes. It would make zero sense. They likely know nothing about that field. Now they could read books on the matter, they could speak to leading experts, they could look at diagrams but never will they perform better than the person who actually does it. So how ridiculous would it be for a Johnny Depp to tell Michael Phelps how he could shave a few seconds off his time? It wouldn’t be his place. Equally as ridiculous is the fact that men think they get to make mandates regarding women’s health.
Now I’m not saying there is no room for litigation regarding the matter. What I am saying is that should be left to women. Looking at my earlier metaphor, perhaps there is an incredible doctor who paid their way through college by earning an acting scholarship. They have the knowledge and experience necessary to weigh in on both topics. Equally, so, women who understand what their health entails should be allowed to make the decisions regarding it.