Today is the second annual Blog For Choice Day.Â I participated last year as well, and I’ve been trying to think of what I could say that would be any different than what I said then.Â When I clicked the link from Brilliant at Breakfast to go over to the hosting website for Blog For Choice Day, it said the topic is: Why You’re Pro Choice.
So…why am I pro choice…I don’t want to be glib here.Â I want to be thoughtful, and give meaningful answers, so that those who disagree with me may understand my point of view, those who agree with me may understand my point of view, and those who are undecided…may understand my point of view.
I am pro choice because I believe that a woman has the right to decide whether she wants to have children or not.Â I believe that women (and men) need to have affordable access to health care, family planning services, education,Â and birth control.Â If you think that the issue of birth control is that far removed from the issue of abortion, you’re very much mistaken.Â I’m not talking about women who use abortion as their preferred method of birth control (though honestly, I doubt there are many women who would prefer to get an abortion over taking a pill).Â I’m talking about access to birth control, for everyone, married or not, insured or not, etc.Â
In many states, a pharmacist can refuse to fill a prescription for birth control, because they have a moral issue with birth control. So you have 5 kids already, and you don’t want any more, and your husband already works two jobs to support the ever growing family, and you feel like you’re DONE with childbearing, but gee, you’d like to have sex with your husband once in awhile anyway? Too bad for you.Â Yes, you can go to another pharmacy.Â But in many rural communities, there just aren’t that many pharmacies close by.
In many states, insurance companies don’t have to cover birth control as part of their prescription plan.Â So you can pay for insurance through your employer, or on your own, but you STILL have to pay $50 – $75 a month for birth control.Â I’m sorry, a lot of women cannot afford that.Â
What it comes down to, for me, is two things.Â
1. People have the right to decide whether they wish to procreate.Â Choosing not to procreate should not mean you have to remain abstinent.Â End of story.
2. We need to trust women to make decisions about their own bodies.Â If we trust that women are capable of doing what is best for themselves, their bodies, and their families, then we need to allow them the right to decide whether to have a baby or not.
If you want to reduce the number of abortions in America, which I think is a GREAT idea, then let’s stop pushing abstinence only education, because, hello, it doesn’t work.Â Let’s educate people about their options.Â Let’s fund family planning clinics, so people have inexpensive or free access to birth control.Â Let’s make abortion as rare as we possibly can, by preventing unwanted pregnancies as often as we possibly can.