I remember this thought provoking ad that was making rounds in facebook few days back – It was a set of images tearing off each body part of a child inside a womb using forceps. Finally the head is brutally crushed before taking it out. The caption reads in the lines of “This is what you do every time you abort. Stop the killing”.
And then there was a TOI article, titled “Number of Abortions dropping in India”, which started with:
First the good news: the number of medical termination of pregnancies (induced abortions) has started to dip in India.
So, is it “good news” if abortion is not a preferred route when:
• One of the parents has AIDS?
• The mother is a raped 12-year old, who doesn’t want a reminder of the reproduction process?
• The parents don’t think they can afford a(or another) baby?
• The baby is unwanted?
That is where our mindset hits a snag, especially considering there are 76 Million Unwanted babies being aborted every year globally – 76 Million murderers. How can a baby be unwanted, when there are so many who can’t have any? How can it be unwanted when very few are blessed with one? How can a married couple not want to have one(or indeed, another) baby? How can it be unwanted when it is a boy? Why be pro-choice and anti-life, when you can attain a higher state of being pro-life?
First things first. Pro-choice is not “anti”-life. The “life” is currently a few set of cells, which is not even living. Either spare the baby some pain before it is alive, or let it live and make it suffer throughout its life for its parent(s)’s mistake.
Secondly, pro-choice is not only for girl babies. I understand that is why it is vehemently opposed to in India. According to the National Consensus for Medical Abortion in India, 11 Million abortions take place in the country. Since sex determination is a criminal offense here, and even if we take out 50% of that total (assuming that the family found out illegally), that still leaves out a healthy 5.5 Million Undetermined sex abortions. We should be proud of such people who have the guts to admit they are not ready and are trying to correct their mistakes, instead of ignoring it and saying, “Arre chodo yaar, jo hoga dekha jaayega”.
Thirdly, abortion should not be tagged as “empowering women” – it is as much a male right as a female’s. Tagging it such is only demeaning a woman's position further. A child is unwanted, even if one parent doesn’t want it. If there is a hope of their coming around, then let’s go ahead. If not, either separate or let the cells die out peacefully before they know they are hated.
There are kids who grow up well with divorced parents, and there are kids who are admitted to hospitals with human bites all over them. There are kids who grow up in slums and open up hotels, and there are kids who are born with AIDS. There are kids who are adopted and are happy, and there are those whose faces are thrust against a wet grinder stone by their stepmothers. There are unwanted pregnancies happening all over the world. Let us not rejoice the dip in abortion levels. Let us rather look at the amount of condoms and contraceptives being sold and heave a sigh of relief, so that no babies are born as a punishment to what the parents did in a heat of passion.