When I was in college, I fell in line with the belief that everyone around me adopted: Abortion was a woman's right that shouldn't be taken away by the government. "My body, my choice" was a motto I supported, even though I had never really thought about it much on my own.
I went through college, graduate school at an Ivy League University, and most of my 20s as a self-proclaimed pro-choice woman. I wanted to support women and their rights. After all, I believed that women deserved bodily autonomy. Why was the government constantly trying to step in and control what we do with our bodies? At least, those were the arguments I was taught to adopt blindly without question, but the older I got and the more I learned about abortion, I realized that I was being sold a lie.
The Term Pro-Choice Is Sanitized Propaganda
When you hear the term pro-choice, you automatically think to yourself, "Of course everyone should have the choice of what to do with their bodies!" It's a brilliant phrase to assign to abortion, and it's worked marvelously at convincing women that abortion is something that all women deserve access to.
Noam Chomsky isn't exactly someone whom I agree with on many subjects, but he has a quote that perfectly defines what propaganda is: "That's the whole point of good propaganda. You want to create a slogan that nobody's going to be against, and everybody's going to be for. Nobody knows what it means, because it doesn't mean anything."
That's precisely why the term pro-choice has worked so well for so many years. It's a phrase that nobody can disagree with, because how could anyone be against freedom and choice? In the context of abortion, pro-choice doesn't really mean anything because it has nothing to do with what abortion actually is: the intentional killing of an innocent human life in the womb.
The more I learned about what abortion is, how brutal it is, how it affects women, and how it affects our society, I quickly realized that abortion has nothing to do with a woman's choice. We don't get the choice to end the life of an innocent human, no matter how small they are, what stage of development they're in, what they look like, or where they're located. And the pro-choice obsession with bodily autonomy started to make me deeply upset because just a moment of critical thinking makes you understand that we lose our right to bodily autonomy the second our expression of bodily autonomy harms or kills another human being. That's why it's just as absurd to say that a man deserves the choice to rape his wife as it is to say a woman deserves the choice to abort her baby. You don't get to pull the bodily autonomy card when your bodily autonomy infringes on someone else's rights, no matter how small or helpless that person may be.
The term attempts to sanitize and shroud the true brutality of abortion and the predatory nature of the abortion industry.
I became furious at the fact that so many women, including myself, had fallen for the propaganda of pro-choice. The term attempts to sanitize and shroud the true brutality of abortion and the predatory nature of the abortion industry. There's no such thing as being in favor of someone's choice to murder, rape, steal, etc., regardless of how small or unwanted the victim is. This now left me asking myself, am I pro-life now? But something still didn't sit right with me about the term pro-life.
Pro-Life and Pro-Choice Aren't Two Sides of the Same Coin
The term pro-life was born from the term pro-choice. They were introduced as two opposing sides on the same issue. Without pro-choice, pro-life never would have surfaced at all. But even the term pro-life sounded like propaganda to me. Nobody knows what it means because it doesn't mean anything, just like Chomsky's quote. I also found that pro-life didn't even address abortion itself; it felt more like a platitude than a direct opposition to the slaughter of innocent babies in the womb.
It occurred to me that pro-life and pro-choice are not two sides of the same coin. In fact, these two phrases have nothing to do with each other. Just like I found major flaws with pro-choice, I also took issue with pro-life. To say I'm patently pro-life is false. I do not advocate for the life of a serial killer, a child rapist, a terrorist, etc. I support the death penalty and believe it's an important part of the justice system that's used to deter people from committing particularly heinous crimes (when it's used correctly, of course).
Pro-life is a vague term that can be, and is, easily twisted to make an intellectually dishonest argument in an attempt to shirk the real topic at hand. For example, leftist activists try to accuse people of not being pro-life because they oppose federally mandated maternity leave and universal healthcare. This argument is unrelated to abortion at the end of the day because there is no monetary excuse that can be used to justify the killing of innocent babies in the womb, and it's also a poor attempt to divert from the real conversation about abortion and its injustice.
Over the last few years, I've taken an abolitionist stance toward abortion. I want it completely eliminated from the country. Although I have much sympathy for rape victims and the trauma they've endured, I don't think even babies conceived in rape should be forced to pay for the sins of their fathers by allowing their mothers to abort them. No baby should ever be put to death because he or she is unwanted. That's why I call myself anti-abortion rather than pro-life.
Anti-Abortion Is a More Effective Term Than Pro-Life
I am staunchly against all abortion, no matter what the reason may be. It's important to note that treatments for cases such as ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage are not considered abortions and all the abortion trigger laws that have gone into effect explicitly and specifically identify that any treatment used to save the woman's life is an exception. This is astute as these medical treatments are not and have never been abortions, which is why they were made available to women long before Roe v. Wade was determined; it was only recently that these procedures even began being considered as abortions in the medical field.
Using the term pro-life just plays into the propaganda paradigm that the left has created.
I can understand the sentiment of pro-life. It acknowledges that all life is worth fighting for in the womb and that we should always advocate for someone's inherent, God-given right to life, especially if that someone is helpless, innocent, and discriminated against. While I agree with all that, I still find pro-life to be a lackluster term that doesn't quite get to the heart of the abortion debate. Anti-abortion is clearer and doesn't leave any room for sneaky arguments that divert away from the meat of the issue.
Additionally, the use of pro-life inherently acknowledges its assigned counterpart: pro-choice. I refuse to even acknowledge pro-choice as a stance, because there is no such thing as being pro-the-choice-to-kill-someone, just because you want to, no matter if that someone is a baby in your womb or a neighbor down the street. I reject that our society would even stoop down to that level of injustice and discrimination. Using the term pro-life just plays into the propaganda paradigm that the left has created, using vague terms to shy away from the fact that abortion is brutal, terrorizing murder and it's by and large the most inhumane act our society has ever adopted.
I invite you to adopt the term anti-abortion as well if you're against the slaughter of babies in the womb. The clearer we can be with our words, the quicker we can get to the heart of the matter. Women, babies, and families deserve better, no matter where they're from and what kind of suffering they've been through.
Readers make our world go round. Make your voice heard in the official Evie reader survey.