Letter: Yes, Let’s Celebrate Roe v. Wade
To the Editor:
Margaret Drye’s self-righteous and intellectually dishonest sentiments are more convenient than they are factual (“Let Us Confront What We’ve Lost,” Sunday Valley News, Jan. 20). Supporters of reproductive rights — including, yes, abortion rights — are well aware how significant is one’s choice to terminate a pregnancy, all the more so because they are often the ones in the trenches, supporting the women making that choice. The mission of pro-choice organizations is first to prevent unwanted pregnancies (Planned Parenthood provides 11 times more contraception services than it does abortion services), arguably doing more to prevent abortions than any “pro-life” organization in operation today. Meanwhile, while there are some women who suffer long-term physical and emotional effects after terminating a pregnancy, study after study since 1987 has shown these cases to be anecdotal and far outside the norm.
So, there have been 50 million abortions since Roe v. Wade in 1973. That’s millions of women who were able to finish their education, providing a more secure life for their future children; women who were able to leave an abusive partner; women who were able to continue taking necessary medication they otherwise couldn’t during pregnancy; women who spared either themselves or their unborn child from certain painful death after birth; women who could continue working and continue being able to feed children already at home.
Children aren’t born in a vacuum. They are born into circumstances, sometimes more complicated and heartbreaking than we can imagine. Celebrating Roe v. Wade isn’t celebrating abortion. It’s celebrating the freedom women now have to take careful consideration of their own circumstances and make choices that, while difficult, may ultimately save their own lives. Meanwhile, may I remind Drye that today — now — there are 16 million children in this country who have to worry about getting adequate nutrition. If she wants to focus on “lost potential,” how about starting with the already-born?