Mike Pence Says Abortion Will End in U.S. “In Our Time”
According to The Hill, last Tuesday, Vice President Pence predicted legal abortion would end in the U.S. “in our time.” Whatever that means.
“I know in my heart of hearts this will be the generation that restores life in America,” Pence said at a luncheon in Nashville, Tenn., hosted by the Susan B. Anthony List & Life Institute, an anti-abortion organization. “If all of us do all we can, we can once again, in our time, restore the sanctity of life to the center of American law.”
Oh, the sanctity of life was at the center of American law? I know Black History Month is over, but lest we forget that for centuries we allowed white men with power to not claim or protect the children they fathered through rape, who separated families for economic means? The Great Slave Auction of 1859, also known as “The Weeping Time,” saw the sale of approximately 436 men, women, children, and infants to be sold over the course of two days breaking up hundreds of families.
Or let’s talk about how Pence values the sanctity of life, but still very much supports the death penalty in his state of Indiana and sees it as an extension of “state’s rights” for them to be able to do that.
But let’s just get to the heart of the issue. Abortion has existed since the ancient world and women have endured multiple forms of torment in order to get it done, risking infection, death, and infertility because they were faced with an unwanted pregnancy.
Plus, even America has not been consistent on its stance on abortion. CNN ran an article back in 2016 which looked at the history of abortion before the 1970s and what they found was that the stigma and legalized issues around abortion didn’t exist until 1880 when abortion became illegal, except when necessary to save a woman’s life,
In the 18th century and until about 1880, abortions were allowed under common law and widely practiced. They were illegal only after “quickening,” the highly subjective term used to describe when pregnant women could feel the fetus moving, [Leslie] Reagan [author of When Abortion Was a Crime] said.“At conception and the earliest stage of pregnancy, before quickening, no one believed that a human life existed; not even the Catholic Church took this view,” Reagan wrote. “Rather, the popular ethic regarding abortion and common law were grounded in the female experience of their own bodies.”
If Pence to lower the rates of abortion in this country, then maybe he should stop being afraid of every woman that isn’t his wife and start talking to women about what they need in terms of birth control. If we are having an abortion debate and people who are anti-choice aren’t going to discuss making birth control and other forms of contraceptives available to women, then there isn’t even a reason to come to the table. Access to birth control that isn’t just condoms stops unwanted pregnancies.
Pence’s comments are a reminder that we must always remain on high alert when it comes to issues like this. There are people who genuinely exist to overturn Roe v. Wade or make it harder to access abortion services so that women have to suffer needless restrictions in order to do something that is their legal right and that concerns their bodies. Not to mention, even groups we are supposed to see as allies are parsing the issues.
According to The Nation, in January, New Wave Feminists, an anti-choice organization, was listed as a sponsor on the website of the Women’s March on Washington. When asked about this, Bob Bland, one of the event’s co-chairs said: “We must not just talk about feminism as one issue, like access to reproductive care.”
Right to choice will most likely not die in our lifetime, but the reality is that we will probably be fighting for the right to choose for the rest of our lives.
Also, to those who want to throw Susan B. Anthony in the faces of other feminists who are pro-choice, I’d advise you to especially not try that with women of color, because Susan “I will cut off this right arm of mine before I will ever work or demand the ballot for the Negro and not the woman” B. Anthony is no “feminist foremother” of mine.
(via Jezebel, image: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
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