Sun | Jun 16, 2019

Letter of the Day | Women will always have abortions

Published:Tuesday | April 23, 2019 | 12:17 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Open letter to Carole Bridge, a member of the Jamaica Coalition for a Healthy Society (JCHS):

Women will always have abortions – that is a fact of life that you and the JCHS will just have to accept. No amount of guilt tripping, moralizing, “empathy for the child” will prevent women who can afford it from having an abortion.

The reasons are many – your health is compromised by the pregnancy, you discover that the guy is a jerk and you do not want the lifelong tie to him that having the child would cause, you are in the middle of studies, you have no income, you have other plans for your life, you discover that the guy is married after the fact and do not want to destroy another family of living people nor bear the stigma of being a mistress with a child for a married man – and I could go on and on. Whether you see these reasons as valid or not, is irrelevant; they might be valid for the woman concerned!

The discussion in Jamaica is really whether one will allow poor women to access abortions at the expense of the State, because women with means do not pay even half a second of thought to the shibboleths of anti-choice zealots, they simply arrange and have their abortions for reasons they do not have to explain to anyone.

However, the most cruel thing you zealots propose is to deny rape and incest victims an abortion, if that is their desire. Your disingenuous concern – abortion hurts women, we anti-choice zealots care for you – hurts women who do not want to have a child whose father is a rapist. That pregnant rape victims do not want their bloodline contaminated by rapist DNA is a healthy form of self-protection for their lives and the lives of their future children born of consensual relationships.

Would you really want to imprison women who have had abortions? Send a woman to prison because she chooses to have an abortion? If you do not intend for women who have abortions to go to prison, why have the law?

In places like Nicaragua, pregnant nine year olds have been denied abortions and women are imprisoned for suspected abortions, even when the woman states that she had a natural miscarriage.

I do not want Jamaica to be a place where a woman’s uterus is policed by the State at the behest of misguided anti-choice zealots like JCHS.

WHO GAVE YOU THE RIGHT?

Mrs. Cuthbert-Flynn wants to give full choice to poor women who cannot afford abortions. She had her abortion and I am sure she does not care one iota what you think of her choice. Women of means shrug off the concerns of zealots and quietly have their abortions with little concern for what zealots think, espouse or campaign for.

We live in a PLURALISTIC society, where all views contend. Some women will choose to abort and some will never abort. No one is trying to force women to have abortions. Zealots’ attempt to close down the discussion as if they can make choices for the lives of others is totally misguided and impertinent!

Women are grown ups and are free to make their own life choices. With what right do think it acceptable to interfere in the personal, private, closely held decisions of women about terminating or not terminating a pregnancy? God gave you the right to do so? Don’t make me laugh!

MARTHA BRAE

martha.brae@yahoo.com