By: Nicole Lashomb, Editor-in-Chief—
Last month, the Texas Republican-led Senate passed its abortion bill. This bill, pegged as the most restrictive abortion bill in the history of the country, would leave approximately 35 percent of the rural and poor population without access to abortion care, according to Terri Burke, the executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas. Women’s rights advocates vowed to challenge its constitutionality in court, The New York Times reported.
Health-care providers in the Lower Rio Grande Valley have begun seeing the aftershock of such catastrophic legislation, Reuters reported. Cytotec, a prescription abortion pill has hit the black market. Women who obtain this pill illegally are not provided the appropriate level of instruction on how to use the pill. As a result of incorrect use, they have been treated for partial abortions, premature births and uterine rupture. This is certainly not the “ideal” world that Gov. Rick Perry dreamed of as a world without abortion. More importantly, Texas has stuck to its guns with its abstinence-only policy for underage and unmarried partners. Deplorable. [pullquote]Topics like abortion may not directly impact your life, but it does affect your well-being. Anytime that we try to curb someone’s liberty, by taking away their right or choice we are taking one step back into the closet. [/pullquote]
Instead of criminalizing women who choose to have an abortion, preventative measures to an unwanted pregnancy should be the first line of defense. Additionally, boys and men should be held to the same level of parental responsibility that a woman automatically must assume once she becomes pregnant. And, in our society with a prevalent rape culture, rapists must be held accountable instead of the victim.
However, even with these barriers in place, a woman’s choice to have an abortion is a personal one that is hers to make, and hers alone. I imagine it is not a conclusion that is reached quickly nor easily. If you are a pro-life advocate, that’s fine, then don’t have an abortion. But, you have no right to strip away the rights of other women, who in their situation and their circumstance decide that terminating an unwanted pregnancy is the best way for them to be able to move forward. What you do with your body is the only point of relevance that should reflect your personal opinion. [pullquote]If you are a pro-life advocate, that’s fine, then don’t have an abortion. [/pullquote]
Topics like abortion may not directly impact your life, but it does affect your well-being. Anytime that we try to curb someone’s liberty, by taking away their right or choice we are taking one step back into the closet. The same way that legislation should not be established to discriminate against the LGBT community, legislation should never be used as a means to morally justify a brigade against any group of people, including women and other underrepresented groups.
*Nicole Lashomb holds an MBA from Marylhurst University & a Bachelor’s from SUNY Potsdam. Contact her directly at her TRT e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.