Why pro-lifers should also be Pro-Choice

A while, back a conservative friend of mine complained that “the problem with liberals is that they just want to ban everything they do not like”, in reference to the debate of gun policy.  I said, that same critique applies just as much to conservatives, who all to often favor using the heavy hand of government to fight a drug war, restrict who can get married, restrict sales of sexually oriented products or services,  and of course restrict abortion access.

I am of the opinion that you can and often should be opposed to things, without supporting the outright banning of them.  For example, there I was in a conversation with a family member, who told me that she supported current marijuana laws, because she does not think “anyone should smoke marijuana”.  I responded by saying that I do not think anyone should listen to the music of Ke$ha, but I would still oppose imprisoning people for doing this.  The point here is that prohibition does not work.  It did not work for alcohol, it does not work for drugs and never worked for abortion either.  Prohibitionist policies simply create black markets for what is being prohibited and black markets, being illegal tends to bring out the worst aspect of the prohibited activity.

This of course applies to the abortion debate, specifically.  You can oppose abortion without outlawing it.  Just as you can oppose alcoholism, without being an alcohol prohibitionist.  In fact, the best way to bring down the number of abortions, is making contraception more widely available, and educating people about responsible sexual behavior.  Why not attack the larger problem at the root, rather attack than it’s most problematic symptoms?  This is the problem that all prohibitionists face.

Of course the typical response here is that abortion is murder, but I as I have argued elsewhere abortion is clearly self-defense in nearly all cases, as no one has an in alienable right to occupy someone else body, without there consent.  That said, one can be pro-life, in opposing abortion on moral or sectarian grounds, while still being pro-choice in the belief that the decision should ultimately be up to the pregnant woman.  One can hold an ethical view without using government coercion to apply it to others.  Furthermore, the term pro-life seems highly misplaced, when it is used to identify people, who would rather the woman die in childbirth, than terminate the pregnancy.   That is why I unambiguously identify with the pro-choice movement, while I do not think abortions should be a common occurrence, and would like to see their numbers reduced through purely voluntary means, I reject prohibition and think the choice should remain with the woman in question.

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