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Is Pro-Life Life-Revering?


In the Guardian today we are informed that an anti-abortion group has been drafted in as a sexual health adviser to the UK government.  This surprised me because I believed that the social sciences in Europe had not yet been dismissed in government - you know those stats that say there is less unplanned pregnancy when kids get good sex education. But I do sense a trend here, that Western democratic nations are closing the doors to science and nature, choosing power strategies that seem eerily familiar to the Victorian age.

In Victorian England women were reviled for having sex outside of marriage or raising a child alone, and imprisoned or hung for having an abortion, but the other half of that equation - the man - was seen as simply sowing his wild oats. A foetus then was a wild oat.

Is this what conservatism is?  A denial of the knowledge that disturbs us in favour of simplistic illusions that morality is a family value where father knows best, mother is the domestic servant, and children obey their parents?

If the anti-abortion narrative becomes the health policy of a nation, can we assume that the unborn will be protected after birth? Will women's groups and social workers receive support in their efforts to support women and their children?  

I know that many who join the anti-abortion movement believe that they are saving the unborn, but do they see how these movements, well-funded by wealthy interests, manage to focus on the deaths of the foetus rather than how we can design a world where mothers have access to what they need to raise a healthy child? That the rows of crosses supposedly revealing the numbers of  "murdered babies" are never compared to the numbers of children and their mothers killed in war and domestic disputes?  Within these groups you might believe that children are most at risk from their mothers.  

The anti-abortion movement is also against sex education, planned parenthood, the use of contraceptives and have not been too vocal in supporting women's shelters or women's health either. If it doesn't support women or children, then who or what does it support?

Now I agree that having an abortion is not a good thing, nor is sexual promiscuity. But we need to address these raging hormones with a little more insight than the instruction to abstain. We need to teach the young how to value themselves, their own bodies and to understand the consequences of their choices.

Women in the popular media are held up as sex goddesses or sluts, and our appetites, held up as the most sacred element of our lives, must be fulfilled.  So if we create government policies that make it illegal  or very expensive for a woman to have an abortion, or have sex, will the media be pressured into cleaning up their practice of using sex to sell products?  To put it simply - if women are to be controlled will  the corporate imaging of women also be controlled by government?  Not likely.

When women and children have choice, life is revered and society is healthier; power is more creative, less oppressive. In societies where women's bodies are the possessions of men, power is about punishment and control. 

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