Dissent Of The Day

by Chris Bodenner
Responding to my post that said 74% of women don't want abortion banned, a reader writes:

Actually, according to that poll, 61% of women believe abortion should be less available than it is now, which would imply that a majority of women are at least somewhat respectful of the rights of the unborn. And I'm rather certain that perhaps 90% of women are more respectful of said rights than Senator Obama, for whom no abortion is distasteful –- even those that occur in the open air following an induced birth and unsuccessful first try.

The poll's three options were "Generally available" (37%), "Available, but stricter limits than now" (37%), and "Not permitted" (24%).  I added the first two, while the reader added the second two.  So I'm accurate to write that 74% of those women are pro-choice.  McCain said, "The majority of women in America, in my view, respect the rights of the unborn."  At first glance, McCain seems to be imply that most women are pro-life.  But yes, his word choice does leave room for interpretation.

However, when parsing McCain's words, I came to realize fetuses can't have "rights," only a right -- to live or not.  In other words, fetuses either have a right to be born (pro-life) or no right to be born against a mother's wishes (pro-choice).  Women, on the other hand, have a spectrum of possible "rights" -- a right to abort, or not, during the 1st trimester, 2nd trimester, or 3rd trimester, under a variety of scenarios.  McCain, as a moderate pro-lifer, holds exceptions for rape and incest.  But those things don't effect the fetus, only the woman.  (Unless the incest leads to prenatal malformation.  But if that scenario is grounds for abortion, is non-incest malformation as well?)

Lastly, for the record: Someone like Obama can believe partial-birth abortion is "distasteful" -- even sad, horrific -- and still believe a doctor should have the right to perform one in order to save the life or health of the mother.  "Pro-choice" doesn't mean you like dead fetuses. [Reader was referring to the procedure pertaining to the Induced Infant Liability Act, which goes beyond partial-birth abortion and which Obama apparently opposed]