The South Dakota abortion ban and the issue of male reproductive fetal rights suggests we may soon be back into the Wire Coat Hanger debate as a nation. Morality is a personal choice that cannot be legislated from the courthouse or controlled from the pulpit. The abortion issue is, has, and shall always be, a force that rips apart families and pits men against women and governments against its citizens and churches against its believers.

When it comes to that kind of irrevocable change I prefer to turn inward for the intimate enlightening experience. About 18 years ago when I was 18, I dated a “good Catholic girl” who had five sisters and four brothers. Her church and family did not believe in birth control. She was sexually curious and active and the old, awful, chestnut that if you wanted to fool around as a horny young man, you only needed to find a sexually repressed Catholic girl and you each would find a pleasurable release together. I was not her first but she was mine.

I wore a condom during penetration but there were other times playing around naked when, we thought, no sort of protection was necessary. We dated for about a year and then broke up. Three months after the split she was back at my doorstep telling me she thought she was pregnant. I had no idea if I was the responsible party or not but her timeline seemed to mesh when we were supposedly exclusively dating — we broke up because of her infidelity — and I asked her if she had taken a pregnancy test.

She had not taken a test but, she told me, she had been “punching herself in the stomach” for the past month to try to “get rid of the baby.” She could not turn to her parents for help. They would have condemned her to motherhood. Her older sisters were highly religious and would not have helped her except to demand she keep the baby. My mother would not have been interested in helping except to just condemn us and my father was unavailable. I called Planned Parenthood and made an appointment for a pregnancy test the next day. She was pregnant.

The doctors thought she was nearing the end of her first trimester and if she wanted a local abortion in Omaha it had to be done immediately because if she waited even another week that meant it would be a second trimester abortion and we’d have to travel to Kansas City to have, as I remember it, the baby “burned out of her with saline solution in a hospital instead of a doctor’s office.

We left Planned Parenthood in tears with no one to trust or turn to but each other even though we no longer wanted each other. She told me she had her own life she wanted to lead and having a baby would tie her down to the same fate as her mother and father who were forced to marry because of an unplanned pregnancy. We knew we didn’t have a future together and bringing a child into our “forced family” that actually broke up around the time the child was conceived was an inconceivable notion for two frightened, but realistic, 18-year olds.

She refused to tolerate the public shame of nine month pregnancy that would last the rest of her life. She wanted an abortion. I called Omaha and set up an appointment. Two days later we were quietly heading to Omaha. We didn’t speak to each other the entire trip.

When we pulled into the parking lot of the doctors’ office I saw three, gleaming, Mercedes Benz convertibles with doctor license plates parked in a hidden area surrounded by trees. It looked like the abortion business was booming in conservative, Republican, Nebraska. I handed over $550 cash to the receptionist and I waited for the next four hours.

Every move I made — asking for an update, asking for the bathroom key, moving from one couch to another — earned me glares and bent lips from the entirely female medical staff. After the abortion we checked into a hotel to spend the night in case there was excessive bleeding or complications. Two hours after we arrived she decided she wanted to go home and rest there.

The drive back to Lincoln was silent except for a brief two minute conversation when we asked each other if I should drive the car into an overpass abutment and end it all right there so all three of us could die on the same day. We drove on without agreeing on a decision. I dropped her off at her aunt’s house. We stayed in touch by phone for another week. We never discussed the abortion again.

We drifted apart — no longer tethered by a beloved history or by the bleeding sinew of another living being — and we quietly finished our Freshman year in college as everything else in our lives that we had previously experienced offered no cure for the internal ripping of inner beliefs, yearnings and plans for the carefree lives we once led together. Several months after the abortion I was visiting a local natural history museum and one of the displays showed the development of a fetus in all its stages.

I stood there slack-jawed and horrified at the definition and the beauty of a three-month-old fetus. I always wonder how that display found me. I hadn’t gone into the museum looking for that kind of undeniably graphic display of the truth and chemistry of science and creation in action.

While I found that display arresting I also knew we had made the right decision for us. If we had not gone to Omaha that day my life would have been completely different and so would hers. I would never have gone to New York to attend graduate school at Columbia University and she never would have graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with an undergraduate degree in design.

We probably would have married and then lived the next 18 years in muted misery as mistakes and circumstance and not love or respect bound us together in someone else’s idea of “doing the right thing.”

Our births are vested in the autonomy of our own decisions but the vexing matter of getting there is tied to the conundrum of a life finding the light of birth. Knowing where one life ends so another may begin is something that will never be universally understood or publicly decided as one.

I still can’t help wondering when the mist rises in the meadow and the sunlight glimmers along the treetops what it would be like to have an 18-year old entering college at the same age I had to face the consequences of a decision that was never mine but was shared by me just as the body in her half belonged to me but with no hope of ever birthing half a life.

54 Comments

  1. David,
    What an incredibly human story. I had tears in my eyes as you talked about seeing the fetus display at the museum.
    There is no doubt that there is life in the womb after conception, but that life is inside of another body. The thought of a bunch of men who are just as quick to condemn single mothers as they are abortion can tell me what I have to do with my body is infuriating.
    Personally, I don’t know if I could ever have an abortion. I have always doubted my ability to have one if the situation arised.
    The other thing about this whole SD situation is these legislators who hide behind their excuse of the “innocent and vulerable” when they’re really craving the recognition of being the first to challenge Roe v. Wade in the Supreme Court. Their gall sickens me.

  2. Hi Carla —
    It was a really difficult experience all around and one that should never be wished on the unwise.
    Being a woman is much harder than being a man in every way. Your decisions directly affect your life and the life of another as you choose a path. We men don’t have that same kind of burden, responsibility or possibility of public shaming.
    I am with you on South Dakota but the best thing about that decision is young women beyond the Wire Coat Hanger years will be immediately forced to make a decision on the issue and the harder the conservatives push their agenda on the nation the more they guarantee to a liberal president and legislative body to right their overreaching wrongs.

  3. Here’s what one of the SD representatives had to say about when abortion should be okay for rape (although they ruled it out with this law)
    BILL NAPOLI: A real-life description to me would be a rape victim, brutally raped, savaged. The girl was a virgin. She was religious. She planned on saving her virginity until she was married. She was brutalized and raped, sodomized as bad as you can possibly make it, and is impregnated. I mean, that girl could be so messed up, physically and psychologically, that carrying that child could very well threaten her life.

  4. Carla —
    Thanks for that SD quote! Amazing!
    No, we don’t have children. The first thing she told me on our first date is she never wanted children. I accepted her choice because that kind of decision isn’t mine anyway. I could have had 10 children or zero children — it doesn’t really matter to me, either way is/was/will be fine — but for me a child at 18 would have meant no measurable life for either of us except to condemn us both to the very life I was desperately trying to escape and never repeat.

  5. It’s good that you had the children issue settled and up front from the beginning. I have seen the child issue cause problems for many people. My best friend from college is going through it right now.
    Yes, I can see where a forced marriage because of an unplanned pregnancy could have kept you from the life you have now.

  6. Hi Carla —
    Yes, Janna was very clear on two things on our first date if we decided to keep dating:
    1. ASL spoken at home.
    2. No children.
    I accepted both her terms without any eye or sub-level desire to change her mind later. I respected her choices. She knew what she wanted.
    What is the issue your friend from college is having?

  7. FYI —
    Too all you religious Haters trying to register on this site to post comments with links to full-color first trimester abortion photos — that won’t be happening as defined on our Policy page:
    http://urbansemiotic.com/policy/
    Your registrations and comments are being deleted straight-away without any comment.
    We are not going to have a wild and angry discussion here about your agenda. You may do that on your site and link this article if you wish.

  8. She was married for seven years then divorced. She and her ex had no children. The man she is engaged to now – who has fathered two children with two different women and never married – announced to her around the first of the year that he doesn’t want any more children. One child has cerebal palsy and is quite incapacitated. The other child he takes custody of every other weekend and pays child support.
    The mother of the first chid, whose disabled, pawned the child off on her parents, who told my friends fiancee that they did not want any help from him nor did they want him to visit the child. This all happened at least 10 years ago. Now, the grandparents of the child are suing him for child support.
    My friend told me a few weeks ago that she thought his feelings were coming from the financial burden should the court side with the child’s grandparents. That last time she talked she said she would give it until the court date to see what was decided. If he still refused to have more children, she knows she has no other choice but to leave. She definitely wants children, and as she told me, “We’re not getting any younger.”

  9. I know. She lives in a small town in the middle part of the state, and I think that environment just stifles her. I keep telling her to leave, and she says the only reason she stays is for her grandmother.
    I always remind her that she can always come up to Greenville (not that we’re such a mega metropolis or anything, but it’s better than where she is) for the weekend to get away, but she never does that either. It makes me worried for her.

  10. David, thank you for sharing your story. I wrote my story a couple of weeks ago. It’s important that we all get our different stories out there for people to read. We are all human. We all should have a choice. Being a parent should not be mandatory.

  11. Hi Cassandra —
    Thank you for your kind comment and I welcome you here.
    I enjoyed reading your story — it was touching and important — and I agree with you that all our stories should be shared in the open and not shamed into silence.
    Your thoughts on “mandatory parenthood” are quite keen and I thank you for stepping forward today to stand with me here.

  12. David quite a moving story and I cannot imagine the emotions you had to have been feeling standing in that museum looking at that display.
    But I believe you both did the right thing for your lives.
    I believe it should be the woman’s right to choose. These bans will just bring back the back alley abortionists which will do more harm than good.
    Mandatory parenthood shouldn’t be thrust upon people who are not at the right stages in their lives to deal with it.
    Mik

  13. Hi Mik —
    I appreciate your comment and I wholeheartedly agree with you.
    Back then I would have made a lousy parent while five years later I would have been a better one and five years after that I would have been unstoppable!
    We must not only know our limitations but confess them and then accept them and do the best we can while we work to resolve the things that impede our forward progress.

  14. I’m hoping that I’ll be one of the pro-life voices that makes it onto the comments by offering what I hope is a thoughtful, measured response. No screeching diatribes, no Bible verses, no grisly photos. I promise.
    I wouldn’t wish the circumstances you found yourself in 18 years ago on anyone, and appreciate you sharing your struggle with it and how you came to realize the gravity of your decision while standing in that museum.
    I also appreciated your post several weeks back on the subject of abortion within the urban core. I’ve always tried to see both sides of this debate, but I think that helped me more than anything see things from your perspective even more clearly. Thank you.
    Here’s what that post helped me see: It would be a good thing if both sides of the debate would understand that there are no easy solutions and that theirs is not necessarily the right one all the time. It would also be good to understand that it’s not the pregnancies that are the problem – it’s the horrible circumstances surrounding them that are exascerbated by the pregnancy. It’s tragic when an abortion is seen as the best solution when it seems at the time that nothing else can be done to address the circumstances. The pro-life side would do well to focus on those things instead of merely distributing grisly pictures and Bible tracts.
    Although I can’t fully agree with all the justifications you offer for your decision and fully admit that were I in the same situation I may or may not have come to the same conclusion (I have my own personal abortion story), I am struck by the fact that you are an honorable man who took responsibility 18 years ago even though it was not entirely certain that you were the one responsible for the pregnancy.

  15. I had a pro-life professor when I was in law school. He was a person who didn’t fit into the typical conservative vs. liberal scheme that defines much of our political arguments these days. He was probably more of a socialist in some ways.
    One of his suggestions for ending some of the problems that cause women to have to make hard choices was to adopt a program like that offered in Germany. The government pays women a certain percentage of their salary while they are off from work for a pregnancy and while taking care of their children.
    The German government offers the money and benefits because German birth rates are extremely low and threaten their economy.
    Maybe our solution is not to ban abortions, since people will find a way to obtain them anyway.
    The solution is in providing alternatives so that people don’t feel like they are stuck in a situation where they only have one choice to make.

  16. Hi Chris —
    For women who work that German solution — ew! that didn’t sound right! — might work, but when you’re 18 and living at home and going to school there isn’t anyone who can live your life enough or pay you enough to keep your head above water.
    She would have been tossed out of her house by her parents and I would have had the same fate so we both would have had to drop out of school, get jobs, and start raising a family with absolutely no prospects for the future.
    Nebraska is a strange and hollow façade in many respects – the state is all about fitting in and standing the right way and if you stick out or don’t go along you are ostracized by your community and left to fend for yourself in the wild night like runts in search of a loving litter.

  17. David,
    That’s probably the biggest problem.
    Parents over-reacting and throwing their children out at the time they they most need their parents’ love and support. Decades of punishment for ten minutes worth of pleasure.
    I observed a similiar situation when I was younger. The city where I lived was a small place and it wasn’t uncommon to know everything about everyone via observation or through the grapevine. Or, the birth announcements listed in the daily newspaper before the era of HIPPA.
    A friend’s brother impregnated his girlfriend after dating for a while. They had the baby in silence and shame. The baby ended up being placed for adoption. Later on, the couple was married. I knew all about it, even though my friend never spoke of it.
    I personally found the silence and shame to be strange.
    The pressure to remain silent and in shame came from the boyfriend’s parents. The girlfriend’s father worked where I worked. One late night when I had volunteered to stay late at the store, he came up to me and started talking about the situation. He knew I was friends with his future son-in-law’s brother.
    I came away with the sense that if it had been up to him, he wouldn’t have made a big deal about it. It seemed to me that his daughter felt pressured by her boyfriend to give the baby up for adoption. I sensed that he would have been supportive and would have made a good grandfather for the child.
    It’s too bad that there aren’t more parents like him when things get bad. Parents who would give a helping hand during times of extreme need.
    Too often, we look for retribution, when things don’t go right, instead of looking at forgiveness.
    If we’d learn that lesson, we’d have fewer problems with children being fearful to reach out to their parents for help when it is most needed.

  18. :: hugs ::
    Your partner is a very blessed woman to have such a man by her side, but I’m sure she knows that.
    I’ve been the best friend holding girlfriends hands while they went through this kind of thing, and the guy suddenly disappears. I have also been the sister, and a word of comfort, to the brother whose girlfriend got an abortion after admitting she didn’t know if the baby was his or not because she’d been cheating on him.
    This kind of thing can be very traumatic for those involved, and so often people forget that there are men involved, men who actually care. In my circle of friends we prefer to refer to such men as heros, because they are rear finds. Many will say they’ll be there, but few will be when the chits fall.
    I went through the initial processes of getting an abortion when I found out I was pregnant with my son, but was told it was too late, which resulted in me falling apart completely. I was having massive anxiety attacks, ripping my own hair out, and in need of a REALLY good slap. Seriously.
    My partner, then friend, came to my rescue. Without him I would have not come out the other side smiling and joyful, if I’d come out at all. So when I read this I can only see that in my mind, and how you may have potentially saved a young girls life simply by being who you are. By caring.
    I see other gentlemen who write on this blog, who would also be in this category of heros. They don’t realise how much the things they take for granted would mean to others, the positive impact they’d have on others. It brings tears to my eyes and makes my heart jump for joy to know that the secret male society of silent heros still exists.

  19. **Warning: My statements may or may reflect my true point of view and my reply may offend you.
    I am simply offering ideas and my personal opinion for intelligent stimulating discussion.**
    Very Powerful and moving Story, David.
    I have several mind-bending comments and questions.
    1. If your heart is light then you made the right decision at the right time and for the right reason(s).
    Q: Do you feel the man doesn’t or shouldn’t have a role in this decision?
    Q. Our society has always had difficulty separating church and state. That said: if it is illegal through the church to fornicate, should it not then be illegal to procreate under such pretenses?
    2. I strongly believe the right to choose needs to be modified to protect all of our ideals and liberties. We speak of abortion usually in the child or rape context but what about the love context?
    Short story:
    Two consenting adults engage in unprotected sex with the intention to conceive a child out of love. A month later the woman turns to her doctor to abort the child/fetus without her husbands knowledge or consent. She does this because she simply changed her mind, or maybe she is spiteful due to a recent argument.
    Q: Do you feel the father should have rights to decision outcome in this case?

  20. **Warning: My statements may or may reflect my true point of view and my reply may offend you.
    I am simply offering ideas and my personal opinion for intelligent stimulating discussion.**
    Very Powerful and moving Story, David.
    I have several mind-bending comments and questions.
    1. If your heart is light then you made the right decision at the right time and for the right reason(s).
    Q: Do you feel the man doesn’t or shouldn’t have a role in this decision?
    Q. Our society has always had difficulty separating church and state. That said: if it is illegal through the church to fornicate, should it not then be illegal to procreate under such pretenses?
    2. I strongly believe the right to choose needs to be modified to protect all of our ideals and liberties. We speak of abortion usually in the child or rape context but what about the love context?
    Short story:
    Two consenting adults engage in unprotected sex with the intention to conceive a child out of love. A month later the woman turns to her doctor to abort the child/fetus without her husbands knowledge or consent. She does this because she simply changed her mind, or maybe she is spiteful due to a recent argument.
    Q: Do you feel the father should have rights to decision outcome in this case?

  21. Hi Cryptic:
    I do not believe a man deserves a moral voice or legal standing in an abortion discussion — or decision — and that covers all contexts of the issue.
    The matter is female-only because what’s at stake is entirely within her body.
    I’m not sure I’m following your church and state argument.

  22. Hi Cryptic:
    I do not believe a man deserves a moral voice or legal standing in an abortion discussion — or decision — and that covers all contexts of the issue.
    The matter is female-only because what’s at stake is entirely within her body.
    I’m not sure I’m following your church and state argument.

  23. The matter is female-only because what’s at stake is entirely within her body.

    I remember there being debates on this issue in law school and some — including some professors — suggesting that the issue should be women-only.
    Does this render the original Roe decision invalid because the case was decided by 7 men: Warren E. Burger, William O. Douglas, William J. Brenna, Potter Stewart, Thurgood Marshall, Harry Blackmun, and Lewis Franklin Powell?
    Is it right that an issue that affects women was made by 7 old men?
    Could these men have been biased because of their male gender?
    Could the 7 men on the Roe Court have been looking out for the best interests of their fellow brothers?
    Evidence suggests that men still win economically. Would this have been different if women had decided the U.S. law regarding abortion, rather than the 7 men?
    I suspect many men are pro-choice because it is in their rational best interest to be pro-choice for a number of reasons, a large one being economic. A one time cost vs. 18 years to 21 years of child support forms the calculus for some regarding this issue.
    Economics also pays a factor in cases where there are kids produced in a relationship — usually the women get the physical custody and the man is assigned a child support duty.
    Even though the man is paying, it is usually to his economic advantage and is less than the actual cost of raising a child. See Bartfield, Child Support and the Post-Divorce Economic Well Being. “Mothers and children fare dramatically worse than fathers” after divorce, even with child support orders.
    While there are more female judges than ever before, many family law judges still remain men.
    And, men still fare better economically in the aftermath of divorce as demonstrated by Bartfield’s study.
    Even in 2004, women still fared worse than men economically:

    Poverty rates are highest for families headed by single women, particularly if they are black or Hispanic. In 2004, 28.4 percent of households headed by single women were poor, while 13.5 percent of households headed by single men and 5.5 percent of married-couple households lived in poverty. In 2004, both black and Hispanic female-headed households had poverty rates just under 40 percent.

    Source: National Poverty Center. Emphasis added.
    Notwithstanding the fact that women weren’t on the Roe court, would it have been better for women to have made the decision regarding abortion, considering the sentiment that many feel the issue is “women only?”
    What might have been different had women been granted the power to make the decision in Roe?
    Did a male bias influence the decision-makers in Roe to pass a law that some say put men into better economic positions than in the past?
    Would our abortion laws and efforts to provide assistance women choosing to have children be different if the law of the land was made by a women-only panel?

  24. The matter is female-only because what’s at stake is entirely within her body.

    I remember there being debates on this issue in law school and some — including some professors — suggesting that the issue should be women-only.
    Does this render the original Roe decision invalid because the case was decided by 7 men: Warren E. Burger, William O. Douglas, William J. Brenna, Potter Stewart, Thurgood Marshall, Harry Blackmun, and Lewis Franklin Powell?
    Is it right that an issue that affects women was made by 7 old men?
    Could these men have been biased because of their male gender?
    Could the 7 men on the Roe Court have been looking out for the best interests of their fellow brothers?
    Evidence suggests that men still win economically. Would this have been different if women had decided the U.S. law regarding abortion, rather than the 7 men?
    I suspect many men are pro-choice because it is in their rational best interest to be pro-choice for a number of reasons, a large one being economic. A one time cost vs. 18 years to 21 years of child support forms the calculus for some regarding this issue.
    Economics also pays a factor in cases where there are kids produced in a relationship — usually the women get the physical custody and the man is assigned a child support duty.
    Even though the man is paying, it is usually to his economic advantage and is less than the actual cost of raising a child. See Bartfield, Child Support and the Post-Divorce Economic Well Being. “Mothers and children fare dramatically worse than fathers” after divorce, even with child support orders.
    While there are more female judges than ever before, many family law judges still remain men.
    And, men still fare better economically in the aftermath of divorce as demonstrated by Bartfield’s study.
    Even in 2004, women still fared worse than men economically:

    Poverty rates are highest for families headed by single women, particularly if they are black or Hispanic. In 2004, 28.4 percent of households headed by single women were poor, while 13.5 percent of households headed by single men and 5.5 percent of married-couple households lived in poverty. In 2004, both black and Hispanic female-headed households had poverty rates just under 40 percent.

    Source: National Poverty Center. Emphasis added.
    Notwithstanding the fact that women weren’t on the Roe court, would it have been better for women to have made the decision regarding abortion, considering the sentiment that many feel the issue is “women only?”
    What might have been different had women been granted the power to make the decision in Roe?
    Did a male bias influence the decision-makers in Roe to pass a law that some say put men into better economic positions than in the past?
    Would our abortion laws and efforts to provide assistance women choosing to have children be different if the law of the land was made by a women-only panel?

  25. I honestly have no straight-forward position on abortion.
    I try to use my mind power to find a means to mitigate the necessity for the word.
    It’s a vicious loop though, in trying to do so.
    If you say outlaw it, you end up ushering in a new coathanger era. If you say legalize it, there’s no consequence for carelessness.
    So where does that leave us? Well, I offer an algerithm based on individual instances.
    1. Was protection used? No [illegal] Yes [Go to Q2]
    1. Did the protection fail? [You have 10 days to go to the clinic (tests done) and get the “morning after pill.”
    2. Was this a rape? Yes Complete a criminal report needed by the clinic to prescribe the morning after pill.
    By changing the black and white (Abortion word) into an equation, you find that we are now offered approaches or avenues for prevention, consequence, and assistance/help.
    I’ll stop here to feel out my audiance and hear a few responses.

  26. I honestly have no straight-forward position on abortion.
    I try to use my mind power to find a means to mitigate the necessity for the word.
    It’s a vicious loop though, in trying to do so.
    If you say outlaw it, you end up ushering in a new coathanger era. If you say legalize it, there’s no consequence for carelessness.
    So where does that leave us? Well, I offer an algerithm based on individual instances.
    1. Was protection used? No [illegal] Yes [Go to Q2]
    1. Did the protection fail? [You have 10 days to go to the clinic (tests done) and get the “morning after pill.”
    2. Was this a rape? Yes Complete a criminal report needed by the clinic to prescribe the morning after pill.
    By changing the black and white (Abortion word) into an equation, you find that we are now offered approaches or avenues for prevention, consequence, and assistance/help.
    I’ll stop here to feel out my audiance and hear a few responses.

  27. Hi Chris —
    That’s an excellent and intuitive response.
    I don’t think the matter should have ever gone to the Supreme Court. I believe men politicized a private matter between a woman and her body and her mind in order to create a political football for tossing.
    Men can debate the issue all day without any psychic or physical ramifications.
    It is the women who must live through the consequences no matter what decision is made.

  28. Hi Chris —
    That’s an excellent and intuitive response.
    I don’t think the matter should have ever gone to the Supreme Court. I believe men politicized a private matter between a woman and her body and her mind in order to create a political football for tossing.
    Men can debate the issue all day without any psychic or physical ramifications.
    It is the women who must live through the consequences no matter what decision is made.

  29. I’m not sure it can be that simple, though, Cryptic.
    In may ways, the new availability of the over-the-counter “Morning After” pill puts this argument back into the woman’s private purview where it belongs:

    Federal approval of the “morning-after” pill for over-the-counter sales should make emergency contraception widely available for the first time by the end of the year, but the new policy excludes the group of women some doctors say might need it the most — teenagers who aren’t practicing safe sex.
    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday approved Plan B, casually called the morning-after pill, for sale without a prescription to women age 18 and older. If taken within 72 hours of having unprotected sex, Plan B is up to 89 percent effective at preventing pregnancy.

    http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/08/25/PLANB.TMP&type=health
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems/200608/s1723684.htm

  30. I’m not sure it can be that simple, though, Cryptic.
    In may ways, the new availability of the over-the-counter “Morning After” pill puts this argument back into the woman’s private purview where it belongs:

    Federal approval of the “morning-after” pill for over-the-counter sales should make emergency contraception widely available for the first time by the end of the year, but the new policy excludes the group of women some doctors say might need it the most — teenagers who aren’t practicing safe sex.
    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday approved Plan B, casually called the morning-after pill, for sale without a prescription to women age 18 and older. If taken within 72 hours of having unprotected sex, Plan B is up to 89 percent effective at preventing pregnancy.

    http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/08/25/PLANB.TMP&type=health
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems/200608/s1723684.htm

  31. The more I think about it, the more we need to focus on helping people. That would help provide people with better choices than what they have now.
    We obviously don’t do a very good job of helping since 40% of black and Hispanic single mothers are in poverty, as of 2004. Abortion doesn’t seem to help prevent poverty and would be a scary thing if it was used for that purpose.
    We need to stop thinking in black and white ways about a host of topics.
    Maybe we’d reduce abortions if people had more economic assistance or health care.
    I’m in favor of nationalizing health care since it would help out a huge number of people. It would also help businesses, so it would be good for the economy. Covering the costs of pregnancy and medical care would take a huge burden off of mothers and families.
    Also since we’re on the topic of “Men and Abortion,” it probably wouldn’t hurt men to have some guidance as to what it means to be a man and taking some responsibility to get a vasectomy or using birth control. Fathering children everywhere and leaving the moms behind to fend for themselves causes a future generation to keep sinking into poverty.
    Just because there’s an abortion clinic in the area doesn’t mean that you don’t have to pay child support if the mom exercises her Constitutional choice to have children!

  32. The more I think about it, the more we need to focus on helping people. That would help provide people with better choices than what they have now.
    We obviously don’t do a very good job of helping since 40% of black and Hispanic single mothers are in poverty, as of 2004. Abortion doesn’t seem to help prevent poverty and would be a scary thing if it was used for that purpose.
    We need to stop thinking in black and white ways about a host of topics.
    Maybe we’d reduce abortions if people had more economic assistance or health care.
    I’m in favor of nationalizing health care since it would help out a huge number of people. It would also help businesses, so it would be good for the economy. Covering the costs of pregnancy and medical care would take a huge burden off of mothers and families.
    Also since we’re on the topic of “Men and Abortion,” it probably wouldn’t hurt men to have some guidance as to what it means to be a man and taking some responsibility to get a vasectomy or using birth control. Fathering children everywhere and leaving the moms behind to fend for themselves causes a future generation to keep sinking into poverty.
    Just because there’s an abortion clinic in the area doesn’t mean that you don’t have to pay child support if the mom exercises her Constitutional choice to have children!

  33. Can we put color behind us, Chris, when one of the most popular shows on television, Survivor, is dividing the tribes on racial lines?

    At the start of the reality show’s 13th edition, “Survivor: Cook Islands,” 20 contestants will be organized into four tribes divided along ethnic lines — black, white, Hispanic and Asian, CBS announced Wednesday.
    Jeff Probst, host of the show, said the network was worried the racial divide might offend viewers.

    http://torontosun.com/Entertainment/2006/08/23/1771803.html
    When Race becomes a casual and entertainment card for playing in the national media culture we all are less in the effort.
    I agree men need to shake it up and think about their actions and behavior with women because if a decision is made by the woman and the man must pay and step up because, after all, you cannot impregnate a woman without your direct consent!

  34. Can we put color behind us, Chris, when one of the most popular shows on television, Survivor, is dividing the tribes on racial lines?

    At the start of the reality show’s 13th edition, “Survivor: Cook Islands,” 20 contestants will be organized into four tribes divided along ethnic lines — black, white, Hispanic and Asian, CBS announced Wednesday.
    Jeff Probst, host of the show, said the network was worried the racial divide might offend viewers.

    http://torontosun.com/Entertainment/2006/08/23/1771803.html
    When Race becomes a casual and entertainment card for playing in the national media culture we all are less in the effort.
    I agree men need to shake it up and think about their actions and behavior with women because if a decision is made by the woman and the man must pay and step up because, after all, you cannot impregnate a woman without your direct consent!

  35. “It is the women who must live through the consequences no matter what decision is made.”
    This is exactly the basis and body of my case. Right now there are no consequences for carelessness. By changing our thought process we open the door for ideas on how he can remove the word from our vocabulary.
    Chris-
    Throwing money at the poverty stricken families will, in my opinion, simply fuel the fire.
    We need better education and role models. I know most major cities offer free condoms. Why aren’t they being used and better distributed.
    Heck.. for that matter, why doesn’t the government simply accept the expense of all brands of condoms in the drug stores. I am interested in a cost analysis on these two areas:
    1. Amout spent on welfare for single teenage moms; AND
    2. The maximun amount it would have cost for theoreticaly making condoms free for these same moms.
    -CK

  36. “It is the women who must live through the consequences no matter what decision is made.”
    This is exactly the basis and body of my case. Right now there are no consequences for carelessness. By changing our thought process we open the door for ideas on how he can remove the word from our vocabulary.
    Chris-
    Throwing money at the poverty stricken families will, in my opinion, simply fuel the fire.
    We need better education and role models. I know most major cities offer free condoms. Why aren’t they being used and better distributed.
    Heck.. for that matter, why doesn’t the government simply accept the expense of all brands of condoms in the drug stores. I am interested in a cost analysis on these two areas:
    1. Amout spent on welfare for single teenage moms; AND
    2. The maximun amount it would have cost for theoreticaly making condoms free for these same moms.
    -CK

  37. Hi David,
    When I was calling for an end to looking at things in “black and white” terms, I was thinking more about nuanced thinking on the variety of “hot button” topics. Of course, it’s wishful thinking since wedge issues are useful for pols to fire up their supporters.
    The “Survivor” segregation is a sad attempt to get attention for a show that has been on for a while and has nothing new to offer.
    Nothing good can come from splitting people up by race. I’m sure the producers will play up any divisions that come from separating people. And, I bet — they better do this — they will mix up the groups in the end to show everyone can get along after all.
    I idea is silly and doesn’t move our national conversation on race forward.
    What’s next, a “Survivor” split between religious faiths: Islam vs. Judiasm vs. Buddism vs. Wicca vs. Atheism vs. Christianity vs. Scientology vs. Apocolyptic “Doomsday” Cults set on a deserted island in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea?

  38. Hi David,
    When I was calling for an end to looking at things in “black and white” terms, I was thinking more about nuanced thinking on the variety of “hot button” topics. Of course, it’s wishful thinking since wedge issues are useful for pols to fire up their supporters.
    The “Survivor” segregation is a sad attempt to get attention for a show that has been on for a while and has nothing new to offer.
    Nothing good can come from splitting people up by race. I’m sure the producers will play up any divisions that come from separating people. And, I bet — they better do this — they will mix up the groups in the end to show everyone can get along after all.
    I idea is silly and doesn’t move our national conversation on race forward.
    What’s next, a “Survivor” split between religious faiths: Islam vs. Judiasm vs. Buddism vs. Wicca vs. Atheism vs. Christianity vs. Scientology vs. Apocolyptic “Doomsday” Cults set on a deserted island in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea?

  39. Hi Chris —
    Okay, I got you now on the “black and white” reference.
    I think they might just do a religious survivor! The show, as you said, is old and in need of a short in the arm. If you’re going to insult skin color, why not the spirit as well!

  40. Hi Chris —
    Okay, I got you now on the “black and white” reference.
    I think they might just do a religious survivor! The show, as you said, is old and in need of a short in the arm. If you’re going to insult skin color, why not the spirit as well!