I am sick and tired of reading about building a "culture of life" and supporting women and babies, as if that's the answer. I'm sorry, but that's just a comforting storyline, a half-solution. For women who want a child, additional support in all forms is helpful and welcome. But some women don't want a child, and don't want to give birth. What for them? Forced pregnancy and childbirth? Every pro-life proponent, including Bulwark friends, should clarify whether they support forced pregnancy and birth for women who don't want a child and don't want to give birth. Is that what they would wish for friends or family members who don't want to bear a child?

How can forced pregnancy and birth, which tramples on the hopes, dreams, and life plans of women/girls, be consistent with supporting life? What about their lives? Have they no value?

You know what is consistent with a culture of life, not to mention respect? Recognizing that women should have autonomy over their own bodies, just as men do.

***To be clear, I do not support unlimited abortion access. In general, I support the previous Roe framework, i.e., pre-viability (though I would settle for 15 weeks), in concert with the goal of making abortion safe, legal, and rare.***

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"First, Republicans and conservatives must remain serious about their commitment to federalism. That means not seeking to impose a national law in Congress restricting abortion, but leaving abortion laws up to the states. It also means not attempting to ban out-of-state travel for the purposes of getting an abortion."

Bwahahahahaha! That's funny considering the religious zealots on the court struck down a NY gun law because that particular state's didn't comply with their reactionary views. Next up: an abortion ban nationwide, end to gay marriage, the EPA, whatever the reactionary majority on the court doesn't like. And let's be real. Republicans and "conservatives" are drunk on power and do not give a damn about a "culture of life." If they did, they would seriously work toward ending the death penalty and limiting guns. They want power. Period.

The law is what the six religious zealots on the court say it is and they will twist words into pretzels to make sure their "vision" of a "Christian" nation is fulfilled.

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When all a women wants to be is "not pregnant", please understand that a forced pregnancy and birth doesn't simply "feel like an imposition". It is a traumatic event. Do you have children? If so, do you remember how you wanted them with every fiber of your being? Now imagine, with that same ferocity, NOT wanting to be pregnant or give birth - and finding out you do not have a choice because your government decides for you. Suicides will rise. Unsafe abortions will kill women. The right is winning with authoritarian tactics - when they cannot persuade, they will use power to enshrine power and simply compel. Dark times ahead.

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You seem to have skipped over the other surefire proven tactic that reduces abortion. Evidence based, effective sex education. The states that focus on "abstinence" have higher teen pregnancies, and more demand for abortion.

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“Pro-choicers are wrong to depict pro-lifers as misogynists or subservient “handmaids”; pro-lifers are wrong to depict pro-choice Americans as libertines who hate babies…”

Oh good grief. Cathy’s “I’m so reasonable” bothsiderism is really tiresome.

Actually, depicting pro-lifers as misogynists or subservient handmaids” is pretty darn accurate for most of them. It is not about “babies” with this crew. It is about controlling women, punishing them for having sex, and turning the clock back to when white men were the only people with autonomy and power — a goal that the Court’s right wing majority is clearly dedicated to achieving.

I was a Senate staffer for several years, and we used to get lots of mail from pro-lifers — not form letters but handwritten original letters. I was always stunned at the number of them that said something like, “if a girl gets herself pregnant she should have to have that baby. It serves her right.” The misogyny is unmistakable, as is the complete lack of accountability for the men involved in creating the pregnancy. And I found myself thinking that if there actually was a “girl” who “got herself pregnant,” I wanted to meet her.

There is no amount of “support for women” that justifies or compensates for taking away women’s right to autonomy over their own bodies and therefore lives.

Fundamental rights should not be up for grabs and subject to the whims of elected officials.

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Libertarians' are generally intensely selfish individuals looking for fig-leak justifications for their selfishness. This dude lives up to that norm

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I guess I find it hard to believe a bunch of lifelong AEI-type conservatives are being sincere about of “Culture of Life” when any meaningful action would require a massive expansion of the welfare state. I mean personally I’d be pleased as punch if the country provided the support and care for women and children. Off the top of my head, neonatal and childhood healthcare (not to mention healthcare for the mother), food support, significant maternity and paternity leave…all those things would be great! Now, I appreciate that Comrade Orell and his ilk get nervous about deficit spending, but a nice big tax hike would solve that—wait! Where are you going?!

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Charlie, I too am moderately pro choice. While undoubtedly there are radicals on both the anti choice and pro choice sides, my observation has been the most extreme radicals are on the anti choice side. I watched the president of Susan B Anthony interviewed - she continuously smiled and smirked - completely inappropriate affect to this serious issue. She also appeared to demonstrate the intellectual capacity of a retarded hamster. As I consider the issue, I think the argument that we should all be able to determine our medical care informed by our physician trumps all other issues. I imagine the squeals from men if they were not allowed vasectomies or penis implants! The hypocrisy is disgusting.

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This is one of the most naive - and patently offensive - articles I’ve ever read; akin to Susan Collins trusting Kavanaugh. Not in a million years will the GOP do ANYthing to help women or support children after they’re born. And that’s not just a feature of the Trump administration; it’s been going on since Reagan destroyed the middle class. with his economic policies and started handing over all of the wealth in this country to the 1%. I should know, I voted for him twice. But the effects on women and children have been disastrous since then and up until now, with the GOP soundly defeating an extension of Biden’s child care payment program. Saying overturning Roe isn’t so bad because here’s what the GOP could do to help is like saying the recently-signed gun legislation is meaningful.

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The Dobbs decision is the decision so now let’s create a society that supports mothers and children. That society has paid maternity and paternity leave, a monthly child stipend, support for child care, and expansive health care opportunities for mothers and babies/children. We can pretend we are Bangladesh and can’t afford it or we can be good people and make society work.

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Jun 26, 2022·edited Jun 26, 2022

Although we often talk in abstract, black-and-white, “pro-life” or “pro-choice” sound bites, abortion is a complex issue with much gray area. There are many examples. Here are just four:

*A firmly “pro-life” friend joyfully welcomed her pregnancy. The 16 week ultrasound revealed severe fetal abnormalities; many of the organs were developing outside of the fetus. Typically this condition results in stillbirth. If the baby is born alive, it dies—painfully—shortly after birth. This woman decided to continue the pregnancy. She delivered stillbirth. She said for her it was the right choice. But she now firmly believes the government should never force this choice on women.

*A 14 year old girl, sexually abused by a relative has become pregnant. If this child is not physically, mentally or emotionally ready to give birth, should the government force her to do so?

*A 19 year old family member recently had an unexpected pregnancy. Her partner bolted. The girl was conflicted. Her parents were willing to provide ongoing support for her even though they knew this would drastically change all their lives. She opted to continue the pregnancy. Kudos to her and her parents. But should the government force this decision?

*A sibling was delighted to learn she was pregnant and also devastated to be diagnosed early in pregnancy with cancer. Pregnancy hormones often accelerate the spread of cancer. If treatment was started immediately, her pregnancy would have to be aborted. If treatment was delayed 7 months, the cancer might kill her. She had a terrible decision to make. Should government make the decision for her?

The current Supreme Court has emphatically, cruelly said ‘Yes, government has the authority, under punishment of law, to FORCE these women to continue their pregnancies.” The court decision is a perfect example of simplistic reductionism and shows an utter lack of compassion and understanding for women in these difficult situations.

Prohibition 2.0—criminalizing abortion— like original Prohibition, is a terrible decision. It solves nothing. It will not work as intended.

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The abortion debate has long been framed as having two sides, pro-life or pro-choice. There is a third point of view, seldom expressed or commented on. It is the pragmatic view that you should not pass laws that cannot be enforced. Such as laws prohibiting alcohol or marijuana. They seldom accomplish their goal, and they usually cause more harm than good.

It is not possible to enforce a ban on abortion. It never has been. Abortions have been done for all of recorded history. They can be done in secret, or self induced. Now that they can done with safe, effective drugs, it is even more difficult to stop them. A law will only prohibit poor women from having an abortion, or helpless women in jail or otherwise unable to act on their own behalf. Wealthy, educated women who have resources will always be able to get an abortion.

If an abortion is murder, it is a type of murder which the police cannot detect, which leaves no evidence, and which no one can stop. Imagine a world in which women could make adults vanish without a trace, leaving no memory of their existence. It would be impossible to prohibit this. We would have to live with it, whatever our morality said.

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I’m delighted that Brent Orrell thinks that supporting women and babies in the wake of the Dobbs decision is a good idea. However, I seriously doubt that such a program would be backed by those Republicans who celebrate the overturning of Roe v Wade. For one thing, these policies would cost enormous amounts of money, for another it would be Socialism, you see. The snide remarks about “entitlements” for “Welfare Queens” would write themselves.

In the author’s view, forced pregnancy is now permissible since a blastocyst is a person with constitutional rights that outweigh those of the woman who carries it. After all, she gave her consent to become pregnant by having sex. This notion is akin to the argument that marital rape does not exist since a woman gave her consent to sex on demand by getting married.

But a woman’s body is not the property of her husband even if she marries; neither is it the property of the State even if she becomes pregnant by accident. These intimate decisions about her future are hers alone to make. All the social programs, tax incentives, government handouts, and tattered charity in the world are no substitute for the devastating loss of a woman’s autonomy and self-determination. Although the Republicans of the Supreme Court have enabled state legislatures to grab us by the p***y, no should still mean no.

That said, although I would personally rather see abortion access as outlined in Roe, something like a 15-week ban with exceptions for rape, incest, and to save the life of the mother is probably workable if it would be supported by a larger majority of Americans.

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What bothers me so deeply about the abortion ruling--beyond the death and economic disasters that will befall women sentenced to life in MAGAland--is the Supremes' sneering lack of respect for half this nation's citizens. The black robes acted not as justices, but ayatollahs, when declaring women not intelligent enough to make their own health decisions or responsible enough to exercise their constitutional rights carefully--so Daddy will by God do it for them.

In this case, Daddy does not know best.

Any society that insists underage girls must bear the babies of gang rapes by funny uncles, or the babies of enslavement in child trafficking rings---looking at you, Oklahoma---is a society that's lost its way so badly that its leadership must be swept from office and replaced. Yes, ayatollahs, we WILL replace you, and you're not going to like it much.

But like you enjoy telling pregnant rape victims, Suck it up, buttercup.

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Why can't some of these articles (and Bulwark podcasts) ever focus on the role and responsibilities of men as it relates to pregnancy? Need a primer? Here's a very long thread by a Mormon mom of 6 who addresses the physical and religious/moral realities of conception: https://twitter.com/designmom

I have yet to hear the Bulwark crowd who affirm their pro-life beliefs ever suggest that men re-think their sexual behaviour. There would be no need for abortion (except for life of the mother reasons) if men changed their behaviour. I'm not saying change would be easy - only that the total absence of discussion of men's role in pregnancy from the pro-life crowd is deafening - especially since so much of the pro-life movement was created and is supported by men.

Framing both-sides as pro-life/pro-choice is actually one-sided as it only looks at the woman's behaviour. Doesn't the true both-sides frame consider the contributions of men and women?

I agree with the writer that better birth control (and sex education) is the best way to reduce abortion (which the article does not acknowledge that very few - if any - woman wants). But the article does not acknowledge all the obstacles to birth control and sex education put in place by the so-called pro-life movement, a frustrating omission.

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Hanging the abortion issue on the subcategory of elective abortion is disingenuous at best. Reproductive care is health care: many abortions are performed so that the woman doesn't die. Ectopic pregnancy can be fatal, as can incomplete miscarriages, carrying a dead fetus, and similar situations. It's laughable to describe a position as "pro life" when it actively prohibits health care that is necessary to save a person's life. I cannot take seriously anything you write about the abortion issue if you continue this convenient overlooking of its full reality.

The fact that my daughter could be allowed to die if she experiences any of the conditions listed above decades after I could get a D&C because my body wouldn't expel a failed pregnancy shows how appallingly regressive this decision is.

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