A woman’s right to choose whether or not to carry her pregnancy to term continues to be a passionate and divisive issue among many Americans. The faith-based community, motivated by religious ideals, argues that life begins at conception while others are not so sure. Some believe that the woman, whom the unborn child is a part of, should be able to choose how to handle her pregnancy.
In one sense, aren’t we all pro-choice? Isn’t conception preceded by several choices? We choose to put ourselves in certain situations. We choose to accept a partner. We choose to have sex. Interestingly, it is only when somebody becomes pregnant that we are forced to come to grips with what was always a potential consequence of sex. For many, an unexpected pregnancy means giving up personal freedom, years of child support payments, or an unstable marriage motivated by guilt and obligation. We all know from an early age that sex is how babies are made. Why is it that we consider abortion a choice to begin with? Why do we use that particular language? It feels a bit misleading. It suggests that everything leading up to conception were a series of inevitable events.
This is a complex issue, but the truth is we have always had the right to choose. The debate over abortion, save cases of rape and the fatality of the mother, seems to be about one thing: our willingness to deal with the consequences of the choices that we have already made.
At times, our political culture can be contentious, divisive, and unproductive. What people may not admit is that we, the people, help shape this culture. The political environment often mirrors the public’s attitude.
Unfortunately, many people are attracted to conflict, unwilling to compromise, and indifferent or hostile to those with opposing views. These attitudes are evident in our personal relationships, in our workplaces, and in social media.
We expect our public servants to be civil, virtuous, and practical; oddly enough, the opposite behavior garners the most attention. What’s more, politicians who compromise on anything are seen as weak. Those that change their minds are seen as “flip-floppers” despite having sound reasoning for doing so. We accept half-truths as facts when they affirm our biases. We tend to support political candidates that share our background (even at the expense of supporting the candidates that are the most qualified). Most importantly, many of us do not accept responsibility for anything. The problem, conveniently, is usually with “them.” Not surprisingly, “them” tends to be the group that does not share our views.
Our unrealistic expectations, our ignorance of the complexity of various issues, our insensitivity towards others, our unwillingness to be the slightest bit uncomfortable, and our obsession with finding fault in others, all contribute to the destructive culture that we see in politics. Part of the solution is for us to begin practicing the principles that we expect from our elected officials.
Kaleshia in her eatery, Pink Frosting. More HERE.