I have gotten embroiled in several separate abortion debates as of late, on several different blogs. It seems as though almost any topic can be brought around to abortion once you start debating about morality. So, even though my blog is brand new, I’m going to just go ahead and jump in with both feet and write about abortion. Specifically, the issues that seem to come up again and again when I’m debating with Christians.
First, it annoys me to no end that because I am pro-choice, the right wingers I have been debating jump to calling me “pro-death.” That is at the same time both extremely incorrect and incredibly insulting. I am not pro-death, quite the opposite actually; I am against the death penalty, I am against violence, I am against endangering women by forcing them to go to backwoods doctors in desperation, and I support universal health care and social programs that protect and care for those that are born. I care about lives that currently exist.
Second, I have yet to be given a reason to oppose abortion for anything other than religious values. The right to life argument inevitably comes down to a belief that we are all “God’s creations” and are somehow miraculous. All you have to do is watch the Discovery Channel or National Geographic to see how perfectly ordinary birth is for all mammals. It happens everyday, and is in all species. We don’t value a fetus of any other species as much as a human one, but aren’t they all “God’s creations?” I realise that we all have the freedom to practice whatever religion we like, and have whatever religious beliefs we like (including none!), but that freedom does not extend to imposing those beliefs on anyone else. So if you want to make abortion illegal, you had better come up with a reason other than ‘your religion tells you it’s wrong.’
Third, just because I am an atheist, doesn’t mean I have no morals. So you cannot dismiss my ideas out of hand because I don’t base my life and values on a book. I do things because I value other people, and I want to live in a society where people care about one another. I don’t do things because I’m afraid that I’ll be punished in the afterlife, and I think this is the key point in saying that my morals are better than a Christian’s. What would the Christian (or any other religion) do without their bible? Would they then say all actions are fair game and go around stealing, and murdering, and raping? If that is what you think people would do without their immortal blackmailer, then I am seriously concerned about your morality.