America is in the midst of the fight of her life right now. The Obama Administration has drawn a line in the sand in the name of “reproductive rights.” Yesterday at the Texas state capitol, protesters on both sides of the issue clashed. Backers of Planned Parenthood clashed with supporters of the Texas Legislature’s decision to end state funding of the Women’s Health Program rather than be forced by the Federal government to deal with Planned Parenthood.
The supporters of the symbolic face of abortion in America have the audacity to call themselves “Pro-Choice.” Well, I’ve made my choice. I double-dog dare you to show half the respect for my choice that you demand I show you for yours lest I be branded “oppressive,” “outdated,” or that ever-reliable liberal epithet hurled when one can’t construct a coherent thought, “bigoted”.
I’m a woman who came of age in the 70’s: the time of the ERA, Marlo Thomas’ Free to Be You and Me, and bra-burning. No, my sex and birthdate were not choices of mine; I merely include them to provide context. I didn’t learn about feminism and “women’s rights” from a history book. I lived it.
These, however ARE the choices I’ve made, based on objective and comprehensive study of all sides of an argument, tempered with my own life experiences. It’s how I was taught to report on an issue in those ancient days when journalism was based on the model of Edward R. Murrow. ERM, not TMZ. It’s how I mediate disputes in my daily work. It’s how I make my own decisions on issues.
- I choose to be Catholic. I wasn’t born that way, and it took me over a quarter of a century of waiting and desiring to get where I am now. I’m just under a month away from the culmination of 8 months of preparation and study–the Easter Vigil, when I will receive the Sacrament of Confirmation and will receive the Eucharist for the first time. I’m as excited as a kid at Christmas about it!
- I choose to be Pro-Life. Why is killing a baby whale, a baby seal, or any other baby animal so horrific, yet killing a baby human is merely a “choice”??? Why is your choice an “enlightened right,” but my choice an “oppressive enslavement”? For those who argue that abortion is necessary to prevent the birth of unwanted children, I will counter-argue that there is an alternative that is safer, more effective, and a helluva lot cheaper than abortion. It’s called “the word ‘no.'” You’re a woman; you have the power. You just need to use it. Be prepared to back it up with your feet–either walk out the door or plant one in his groin AND THEN walk out the door, depending on how insistent he is.
- I choose to hold fast to the belief that the end does not justify the means. If you want stem cells, arrange to obtain unclaimed placental or umbilical blood. Don’t create a person (which is, after all, what an embryo is) just to harvest his cells. People will sell anything else (Don’t believe me? You haven’t been on ebay or craigslist lately, have you?); there’ll be a market for “clean” stem cells.
- I choose to hold fast to the belief that the Founding Fathers knew what they were talking about when they wrote the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. It is timeless.
- I choose to take a stand and boldly and unashamedly proclaim that Timothy Cardinal Dolan has a better understanding of the First Amendment than Barack Obama and Kathleen Sebelius, who seem to conveniently overlook that government may not “prohibit the free exercise” of religion. I was privileged to have studied First Amendment Law taught by Dr. Henry Lee, one of the foremost authorities on the First Amendment in the country. It was one of my favorite classes in college.
- I choose to express my beliefs at the polls. I will vote my conscience. I expect nothing less from any American, even those who don’t agree with me. If you don’t vote, don’t bitch. You abrogated your right when you chose not to vote.
- I choose to make my opinion public. I’m not saying anyone else has to, nor am I saying that anyone has to agree with me. That’s the beauty of living in a country that is still, at least for now, free. If you DO choose to disagree with me, however, please demonstrate that you can construct a valid argument consisting of a modicum of brain synapses. If all you can spew are obscenities and bad grammar, don’t waste pixels here. Try huffpo.