June 29th 2008

The Lilith eZine Sunday Edition

Letter from the Editor

Abortion is my topic of discussion today and I am going to start off with some abortion statistics:

73% of American women who have abortions are living below the poverty level (earning $9,570 or less per year).

60% of American women who have abortions already have 1 or more children.

66% of American women who have abortions are not married.

33% of all American women who have abortions are between the age of 20 and 24 and are the largest percentage by age bracket.

52% of American women will have an abortion during their lifetime.

From these statistics it appears that there is a very sizable percentage of young American women who already have kids, are single mothers, are not married and aren't making very much money. Its really not surprising that they choose to have an abortion. If I was working two jobs, making very little money and already had one child to worry about the last thing I would want is to double the problem.

When you're in that situation it doesn't really feel like you have much of a choice. Abortion suddenly became more like a need rather than a choice.

For years the anti-abortionists have been pushing this idea that the stereotypical women who have abortions are "corporate risers" who have sex with the boss to get a promotion, backstab their co-workers, get pregnant and dump the fetus in the nearest available abortion clinic all for the sake of capitalist greed.

And while I admit the United States is very capitalistic, the statistics show that this is simply not true. Instead the women who have abortions are much more likely to be making minimum wage, is already a single mother, may be trying to work their way through university or college, and simply doesn't have the finances to raise 2 or 3 kids by themselves when they have enough trouble with the 1 or 2 they already have.

Why is suddenly a topic for discussion?

John McCain, the Republican Candidate for the 2008 Presidential Election wants to overturn Roe v. Wade, but keep abortion legal for incest & rape exceptions and when the mother's life is in danger. He also wants to prosecute abortion doctors and says he would nominate supreme court justices based on their experience and shared values with respect to abortion.

Could you imagine if abortion suddenly became illegal and the only way you could get an abortion is if you went across the border to Canada or Mexico or pretended that someone had raped you? False rape allegations would skyrocket and cross border shopping and sneaky terrorists would be the least of the border guards' worries. Young pregnant women would be lined up at the border needing abortions.

That or we'd go back to the old fashioned way... illegal abortions in secretive clinics.

And lest we forget the protests. If 52% of American women will have abortions during their lifetime, what about the % who still believes in the right to have an abortion even if they don't need one themselves?

I've been ignoring the male equation in this issue, but think about all the problems that would cause as well. Extra children being born to unwed mothers... shotgun weddings, family strife, homelessness, paying child/spousal support, broken families. Men won't be liking this change much either (despite the fact that 77% of all anti-abortionist leaders are men).

Politicians generally like to stay away from the abortion issue. Its too controversial for many people and they don't want to deal with it. John McCain has been pretty blunt what his intentions are, and for once I don't think this politician is lying.

Suzanne MacNevin
Editor of the Lilith eZine

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