Richard Durbin on Abortion
Democratic Sr Senator (IL)
As an American male, there are those who would say I am not entitled to an opinion on this issue. I’m, in fact, mostly supportive of the impression that it is up to the woman in question to determine matters. I would have some input of course. I feel it is only right that the man who does the baby-making can at least voice his displeasure at that moment if it is necessary. But he can’t force her to take any course of action, any more than the government has rights to. We must first, however, determine why this debate has reached such caustic levels and what is wrong with the views on the extremes of this issue.
Of the first, the issue of children is of some importance to any society. The concern over their well-being, upbringing, and production is a matter of interest. But ultimately these are private concerns. Not national. Not public, private, individual problems. Each of us has a good deal of input into the decision to have children, and how we should like them raised, or the decision not to have children. Consequently, the debate revolves around an issue which at its heart concerns the future, our children, in some manner. Anytime we concern children; it is sure to stir up the storm. Such emotion has little place in this debate’s resolution, but it will not be ignored.
Of abortion, it can be said there are a number of reasons for a woman to want to have one. To preserve a figure or lifestyle, obsequiousness to the man’s demands, health concerns, rape, or simple timing considerations (career or a young age). Some of these are entirely legitimate reasons recognized by all but the most extreme involved. What is of note is that each represents a choice, perhaps not always the right one, but a choice nonetheless. Therefore, the side of pro-abortion is not pro-abortion at all, but rather pro-choice. Few very people would have us at the ridiculous presumption that all people should abort at any time for any reason. Given the often traumatic nature of the event, the depressing state of ‘losing’ a pregnancy for some, and whatever psychological/moral damage inflicted on a family, abortion is not to be taken lightly.
Concurrently, the opposing side is not pro-life, but anti-choice. Pro-life implies that the abolition of abortion is in some way defending life. While it is noteworthy that many would have the abortion as the murder of a fetus, this is not conclusive evidence that we are in someway ending lives.