How do react to something being done to others that don’t affect you? Do you only speak out when your “ox” is gored? Do you see yourself as your brother’s (and sister’s) keeper or do you view others’ hurts and struggles as “not my problem”? What became of the sense of societal obligation to look out for the welfare of all, as opposed to the attitude of “I got mine, now you go get yours”?
We are all in this world together and things go better when we look out for each other. Someone once said “where there isn’t justice for all, there isn’t justice at all” The English poet John Donne said it well in his poem No Man is an Island “Everyman’s death diminishes me, for I am involved in mankind”. And it is often too easy for us to not see people in hurt when it doesn’t directly affect us, but we should see and respond.
That is the case with women’s rights today. Isn’t it amazing and distressing that men object when efforts are made to level the playing field between men and women when it comes to pay or opportunity or health care. Yes, health care. When have men had laws passed to come between them and their doctors? Never. When have their personal medical decisions been questioned or have medications been the subject of public debate.? Never. Because men have always been in control.
The decisions on Roe v Wade go way beyond simply abortion. It is an issue even beyond health care. Privacy matters. Re-read the Bill of Rights. If you don’t see the right of privacy running through it I think there is a problem with your vision or understanding. “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated” US Constitution 4th Amendment. Pretty clear.
But today the right to privacy is under attack primarily in matters of women’s rights. The right to health care and the right to make the very personal choices surrounding pregnancy are not affecting men, just women. The demands that restrict their choices often imperil their lives, their health, and their economic conditions. A man can participate in the start of a pregnancy but then can walk away with no consequences. A woman cannot.
And it is so easy to rationalize and dismiss the struggles others go through when you are not going through them yourself. But I have heard too many stories of the situations that have happened to women to discount the pain and terrible decisions that have to be made by women in difficult pregnancies. It is enough. They should have support in those times, not fear of condemnation for not making the “right” decision.
And for a political party who supposedly stands for getting government out of people’s private lives to be legislating in many areas the very opposite of that is the heighth of hypocrisy. I for one, am a guy who believes that the defense of women’s rights, including the right to choose, is a defense not only to their right to privacy, but to the right to privacy for all of us.
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