Blog for Choice Day 2009

Today is Blog for Choice Day, and the 36th anniversary of Roe v. Wade. This year's topic is: What is your top pro-choice hope for President Obama and/or the new Congress?

My top pro-choice hope for our President and Congress is the same as my top pro-choice hope always is—that they would recognize that legal and accessible abortion is a fundamental component of respecting women's autonomy and equality, and thus defend and protect the right wholly, ardently, and unapologetically.

As for me, I support choice for a very simple reason: I want it. I want choice—for myself, and for other women. And I trust women to make the best choices for themselves. That's about the long and the short of it.

All the rest—the hand-wringing, the shaming, the religion, the science, the assertions of certitude about when life begins—is just so much noise, is just so many different ways of qualifying why, exactly, women aren't fit to make decisions for themselves about their reproduction.

I trust women, and the only question I have for someone who rejects choice is: Why don't you?

As we move forward in our fight to protect choice, I hope every last member of the anti-choice misogynistic crusade against women's personal autonomy is forced to account for their answer to that question.

And believe me, the fight isn't even close to over.

I'm 34 years old. My whole life, abortion has been legal, but its legality has never been totally secure, predicated on the composition of the Supreme Court, on our political and cultural leaders' resolve to support and protect it, on pro-choice women's and men's determination to defend it.

Nevertheless, there are an incredible number of women and men in my generation (and its youngers) who subscribe to the understandably appealing but erroneous belief that Roe will never be overturned, who fail to realize it matters not whether Roe is overturned, if anti-choicers are successful in rendering it an empty statute. Such widespread complacency and ignorance has created a void in which anti-choicers have been frighteningly successful at chipping away abortion rights and access on the state level, leaving many women across the nation with the legal right to get an abortion, but no means to do so.

So on we march, from one battle to the next, fighting for the right to choose, to make up our own minds about our bodies and our futures. And in each place, of each new face who believes s/he knows better what's best for us, I hope we ask: I trust women; why don't you?

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