Monday, January 22, 2007

It's my body, so it's my decision

It's "blogging for choice" day on the web and there are a lot of great posts everywhere today, from the Ninjas blogging for choice to a powerful description of how "choice" is really women's right to self-determination. And here are some more.
What we are supposed to blog about today is the reason why we are pro-choice. For me, its pretty simple -- its my body, so its my decision.
And if I have the right to control my own body, then so does everybody else.
Now, this doesn't mean I would necessarily have ever had an abortion myself, nor does it mean that I wouldn't try to convince another woman not to have one. But I don't have to explain my decisions to anyone else, nor do they have to explain themselves to me. Its not up to me to judge whether some other woman's reasons for having an abortion are "worthy" or "right" or "good enough" -- in the end, its her decision.
Anyone under 30 won't remember the Abortion Wars of the 60s to 80s, from 1969, when Trudeau said Canadian hospitals could perform abortions if a committee of doctors agreed, to 1988, when the Supreme Court threw out the abortion law. Though the hospital committee approach was better than a back street, it was a shameful system which encouraged everyone to lie, doctors as much as anyone else, and it was ripe for corruption. Pro-lifers tried to take over the hospital boards so they could get "their" doctors onto the committees, and the hospital board elections were nightmares. I hope society never has to go through this again.
Here is Wikipedia's map of abortion access in Canada:

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