Pro-Life Feminist?

 Posted by on 16 October 2008 at 6:12 pm  Abortion, Activism
Oct 162008

Today, the Christian Science Monitor published an excellent letter to the editor by William Stoddard, a much-valued NoodleFood commenter. As published, it reads:

Regarding the Oct. 14 Opinion piece, “Amid Palin hype, a pro-life feminist’s dilemma“: “Pro-life feminism” is a contradiction in terms. A woman who would deprive other women of control over their own bodies, by legally compelling them to carry pregnancies to term against their will, is not a credible advocate of women’s rights.

Abortion is not an easy choice for any woman, and it would be a good thing if the need for it were minimized through conscientious use of contraception. But the claim that a fetus is a person under the law has intolerable implications. A fetal “right to life” would define doctors who perform abortions, and women who undergo them, as murderers. This would be the case even for women who became pregnant through rape, or who were carrying profoundly defective children.

The law should protect the pregnant woman’s right to decide what to do. Any other policy is opposed both to feminism and to the broader concept of individual rights.

William H. Stoddard
San Diego

Unfortunately, it’s not available online yet. (It was definitely printed today, as I have a hard copy in front of me. Paul subscribes, as it’s a great little newspaper.)

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