A few months back, I wrote a controversial post about abortion, commenting that an unborn child should have a chance at life even if the woman is raped. It was not well received. However, after recent events in Alabama, it seems I'm not the only one who feels this way. I’ve been turning this topic over and over in my mind. I decided to take a closer look at the rape-victim pro-choice point of view; as they say “her body, her choice;” trying to understand if there is a middle ground somewhere on this particular subject.
If you’ve been online in the last couple weeks, you might have seen some of the following headlines:
“Lawmakers Vote to Effectively Ban Abortion in Alabama”
“Alabama lawmakers vote to ban all abortions in the state and to punish doctors”
“Alabama lawmakers, with eyes on overturning Roe v. Wade, pass nation’s strictest abortion ban”
Likely, you experienced these headline in one of two ways:
Maybe you felt, excited, relieved, victorious, triumphant, joyous, emboldened, or
Afraid, angered, desperate, lost, discouraged, enraged
Inherently, and perhaps instinctively, we recognize the high-stakes nature of winning or losing this debate. We feel it in our chest. We are quick to emotional outburst; ready to shout down our opponents in a high-stakes winner-take-all knock-down drag-out.
Why is this issue so explosive? Why do both sides of the debate seem to lose their minds at the mere mention of the subject? Why are the stakes so high?
The answer: There’s a gun in the room.
Most people don’t recognize the underlying conversation going on; an implicit meta-conversation — A conversation that goes something like this:
“It’s imperative I win, because winning means I’ll get the full force of the State to enforce my will against you. But if I lose, the opposite is true.”
Imagine putting two people across a table from one another for a debate with a third person standing over them with a gun. The cost of losing is death. The spoils of winning is life.
How can anyone have a rational, curious, and empathetic conversation with one another under these circumstances? The concept of a win-win solution isn’t even part of the equation.
Think my example is too extreme?
Try breaking any law, no matter how minuscule , and find out what the enforcement wing of the State is truly capable of. The best, and most accurate, definition of the State is: A group of people with the legal monopoly on force.
The arena in which the State is the expert is one where they have the right to escalate until you either comply or die. We’ve all seen the cascade of videos, showcasing the “boys in blue” abusing their power when people do not comply with their demands. Ultimately, it’s the only tool in their arsenal if you refuse to submit.
This coercive force leaves people no other option than to jump straight to the worst characterization of the opposing side; attempting to demonize one another. “Oh, you just want to kill babies!” or “Oh, you just want to control women’s bodies and treat them as baby-having slaves!” Neither of which is true.
I don’t know what the solution is for the abortion debate. I know how I feel about it, and I’ll gladly make the case for anyone willing to hear me out, but I would never call on the power of the State to force my beliefs on anyone. It’s a violation of the non-aggression principle and it’s immoral.
Again, I don't know what the solution is, but there is one path toward solving the vast majority of the problem: Get the gun out of the room.
People tend to become way more rational, amicable, and willing to actually have the conversation when they aren’t under duress. They’re also way more likely to find a potential solution— peacefully.
The faulty idea that people have to be controlled is skewing the entire conversation; resulting in a desperate, distorted, irrational grasping at straws — an overwhelming need to win at all costs. This makes it impossible to discover rational solutions.
Just imagine, for a moment, what kind of solutions we could find in the absence of force. Imagine if we were actually fighting for a solution to the abortion debate rather than control over the State.
I used to have this idea that the Christians were like, “Hey pagans… you should try Christianity.” And the pagans were like, “No thank you.” Then the Christians were like “hey, it turns out we have these holidays that are just like yours!” And the pagans said, “In that case, OK!”
It was nothing like that. Not even close.
Recently in a discussion, my concerns were dismissed with one simple line.
I was told that if I did not vote I had no right to bitch about the direction of this country and its effects on my life. Really? Is that true? If you don’t vote, you have no right to complain?
This got me thinking: What right do I have to complain about a system I refuse to participate in?
Dear Trump Voter,
I know the coming elections are coming up soon, and I’m trying to make a decision about who to vote for. If I’m going to vote in a system funded by theft and dedicated to the unjust redistribution of wealth, I need to do some homework to make sure I select the best mob boss.
This is where you come in.
I need your help understanding why I should vote in favor of Trump over the other candidates.
There are just WAY too many things that need to be addressed, too many topics that need to be covered, too many angles that need to be discussed. There is so much nuance to any single subject that it's hard to stop on just one and fully flesh out every aspect of the story in a way that actually matters.
It's much more about the fatigue of having an enormous amount of subjects that need to be covered (mainly out of attempting to correct media bias and irresponsible reporting), and not nearly enough hours in the day to cover them all.
This is the first of a series called "Letters to a Lefty." Single mothers tend to vote democrat whereas married women tend to vote republican. This has much to do with the fact that single parenthood would be nearly impossible without handouts from the state to replace the role of the father. Please enjoy!