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Abortion for right-wingers
Abortion for right-wingers

Abortion for right-wingers

Aside from condemning abortion, right-wingers are also strong gun rights supporters. I am going to link these two with the goal of supporting abortion, using nothing but right-wing beliefs. Bear with me, please.

Right-wingers believe that having firearms (from pistols to semi-automatics) is a human right for an array of reasons. I’m not going to argue for or against guns in this essay, but I am going to discuss one of the main supporting arguments pro-gunners like to cite when in debate: self defense.

The police are great, but because of practical reasons they can’t always be everywhere. This is why it is a good idea to allow concealed carrying of firearms — so that people can protect themselves in dangerous situations.

A classic counter is that everyday people aren’t trained to use a firearm and might end up damaging themselves much more than their aggressor. I’m not exactly sure what international gun policy consensus (if any) is, but a typical pro-gunner would say that any person that wishes to purchase and subsequently carry a firearm, must first pass some form of training and clearance to acquire a license to do so. This is a feasible solution and at a bare minimum defeats this counter.

Alright, so at this point it should be clear that right-wingers support the notion of self-defense as a valid argument. Before I get to supporting abortion, I first need to clearly describe it.

Women can get pregnant with an unwanted fetus in multiple ways, including being raped by a random criminal or even someone they know; or getting pregnant with intent and then due to unforeseen circumstances regretting it (financial issues, death, significant other leaves the mother, etc.).

In some (especially conservative) societies it is very frowned-upon or even illegal to have an abortion. This is usually because of social and religious values. Specifically the view that all life is sacred. Whether this is in fact the case, is another debate, but all I want to focus on now is the effect of forcing unwanted pregnancies.

First of all, if the mother has to raise the child, she is immediately responsible for a lot of expenses. Raising a child is not cheap. If the father is missing (which is often the case), the expenses become even more burdening. The child could be given to the extended family to be taken care of, but that is just unfair towards them. In the case that the mother is young, she could be deprived of her chance to complete her studies, not to mention the loss of youth in general.
If the child is put up for adoption, the mother is in for a lot of psychological trauma that could very well have a serious effect on her adequacy of fitting into society. And of course the thought that another pregnancy could occur and that she would be in the exact same situation, does not help at all. It should be very obvious that giving birth to an unwanted child has a lot of negative effects on the mother.

And what is the direct cause of the mother’s suffering? The child. By merely existing in the womb, the child is setting up a very large risk for the mother. I believe having an abortion can be seen as an act of self-defense. The child, if born, will cause suffering to the mother and if the mother has the opportunity to circumvent this suffering by using violence, then that must be an acceptable decision — just like with guns: A robber, merely by trespassing on your property, is setting you up for potential suffering (physical or financial), and so if you have an opportunity to circumvent your suffering (killing them), that is acceptable.

One could counter by saying that all life is sacred, and abortion is therefore immoral. Well, if you are willing to kill a man for trespassing on your property, why is his life not sacred? Is it because he carries a potential risk of suffering for you? That’s exactly what unwanted unborn children are doing too.

Another counter could be that the unborn children aren’t committing any misdeeds or crimes by merely existing — they didn’t even bring themselves into existence. I would say imagine a sleepwalking person by chance carrying a knife, stumbles onto your accidentally unlocked property during the night. You wake up, grab your gun, see them moving around, and deciding that they may pose you a risk, you shoot and kill them. This would very easily be dismissed as a case of self-defense. Note that the sleepwalker also didn’t consciously do anything wrong, but a right-winger would still say that it is moral to kill them, given the circumstances. And in the case of abortion the risk of suffering is even clearer than with the sleepwalker, so it should be even more permissible.

The final counterargument that I will look at is that the suffering risk is not the child’s fault, but the religion or the society’s fault. And even though that might be true, it is much more difficult to argue for. If the child was not born, the mother would not suffer — irrespective of the surrounding society/religion. It is thus easy to prove that even though the child might not be the entire cause, it is definitely the direct cause.

So there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. A pro-abortion argument that can be held by a right-winger without any fear of hypocrisy.

Image credit: Detroit Free Press

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