Roughly a week ago I read an article on Jezebel titled “There Is No Such Things as a ‘Pro-Life Feminist.”
I’m more than willing to admit that I had a slight beef with the title of the article and I had a rough time shaking that impression as I read the article. Truly, I wanted to throw that out there as a disclaimer as I talk about why I have a problem with this idea.
As a self-identified feminist, I have a difficult time with the labels “pro-choice” and “pro-life.” The reason I have difficulty with those labels is because I don’t understand why you can’t be both. To me these labels say that if you respect a woman’s right to choose (read: pro-choice) then you are effectively running around in the streets telling every woman you see that she should immediately get an abortion. On the flip side, if you identify yourself as “pro-life” you completely disregard free choice and the need for some women to get an abortion for a wide variety of reasons.
Truthfully, I think these labels are much too limiting to people of intelligence (and I do like to count myself among those people). They aren’t subtle enough to convey the feelings many of us have regarding this issue. Yes, I respect the right of everyone to have freedom over their reproductive rights. However, I think it’s more important to focus on teaching everyone about the importance of taking their reproduction into their own hands. Using condoms, birth control pills, IUDs, implants, or whatever. It’s also important for those things to be readily available so that you are less likely to find yourself with an accidental pregnancy that needs to be ended.
I believe that most people are “pro-life” in some sense. For me, I am happy to be alive! If you do not believe that anyone should have an abortion then you should label yourself “anti-choice” in this argument.