What does it mean to fight for women? What is the definition of liberation? When will enough be enough? How does abortion play into the feminist argument? Why can the two be used in the same sentence? How does that work?
Claiming the term "feminist" means that you fight for the rights of women and equality for women. You want to make sure that women are getting paid equally and have the same opportunities that they would have if they were men. Women should be given the same exact rights and opportunities as men. Women should be given the freedom to be who they want to be, whether that be a neurosurgeon, a CEO, or a stay-at-home mom. They should receive equal protection under the law and given fair trials. They should have the freedom to choose who they love, if they want to get married, what they want to eat, the color of their hair, the tattoos on their body, whether they want to wear contacts or glasses, and who they want to be "when they grow up." They should have the right to vote and have an active voice in government.
All these things are good things to fight for. My problem with the feminist movement is when it comes to the abortion debate.
Now I know what a lot of you are thinking, and you probably don't want to continue reading, but please just hear me out. Fighting for abortion rights is not a fight for women, it's a fight for control. By being given the right of "my body, my choice" you are really receiving control over life and death. The power is now in your hands to decide whether or not a child lives or dies. How does being given that right provide liberation for women? When liberation costs innocent lives it is merely oppression redistributed.
Also, what is liberation for women when 50% of the time it costs the life of a woman? There is a 50/50 chance the child that the woman is carrying is a baby girl. What about her rights, her empowerment, her freedom to choose whether she lives or dies? It is hard to claim that you fight for ALL women when you have a 50/50 chance of taking away one's basic right to life.
Let me just make it clear that I am not calling anyone a murderer or anything like that. I can sympathize with why abortion might seem like the best option for women. The woman is scared, confused, unsure of the future, and often times think what they are doing is best for the baby because they don't want them, or cannot take care of them.
Women are told there is a third option, adoption, but sometimes that seems like a worse option because of the brutality of the foster care system. You can be in the system for years and not get adopted, you can move around from home to home with no consistency or security for years, which can really take a toll on a child's mental health, and sometimes even physical health.
With that being said, they might think that by having the right to abort the child, they are doing the baby some kind of service, by putting it out of its misery before they are even born. This mentality in and of itself is a whole different argument, but by fighting for choice and women you cannot contradict yourself by taking someone else's choices and making them yourself. Positives can come from the most unfortunate circumstances, but by claiming "my body, my choice" you rob them of the opportunity to make the most of the situation they are placed into.
Also, let's talk about "my body, my choice." You're completely right, things that have to do with your body, are your choice, but it's not your body. Your body does not have two faces, or four legs, or four arms, or four eyes, four lungs, or 2 livers. You have another human growing inside of you, although a baby depends on you for survival for the first 20 or so weeks, that does not mean that it isn't its own body or organism. A baby can have a heartbeat at 3-5 weeks after fertilization, which is before an individual would even know they were pregnant using an at-home pregnancy test, especially if the baby was unexpected.
Your body does not have two heartbeats. With advancing technology, a baby can survive outside the womb more and more prematurely. It is legal to get an abortion up to 28-weeks pregnant, but the baby can survive without you at 22-weeks with medical assistance. It's not your body. If it was your body that you aborted, you would be the one whose heartbeat stops. It's not liberation for women, it's control over life and death.
I think rather than fighting for abortion, we should be fighting for the kids and the young women by bettering and reforming the foster care system, so that abortion doesn't even cross the minds of women in crisis. Individuals shouldn't be defined by the circumstance that they are in and feminist should fight for ALL women, not just the ones that are convenient. Yes, reforming the foster care system will take a lot more work than encouraging abortions, but by taking these actions and steps feminists will have the opportunity to empower all women, rather than taking choices and opportunities from some.