Monday, June 04, 2007

The Dilemma of Choice

Pharyngula directed me to this article in the Daily Kos where a doctor writes why he does abortions. Abortion is not legal in the Philippines, contraceptives are barely tolerated by the Catholic church and their viewpoint dominates Philippine society. I hope somebody who reads this article will be brave enough to reconsider his/her personal opinion on this issue.

I was raised by my mother and my grandmother. I had no difficulty accepting that women are the equal of men. I witnessed the strength of my mother and grandmother everyday. But I always had an aversion to the pro-choice position. I always thought of the waste of potential of an aborted human being.

I accepted the pro-choice position when a friend, the martian, explained that pro-choice is about women, it is their body, it should be their choice. But I embraced the pro-choice position after I read Mandatory Motherhood: The True Meaning of Right to Life.

Dr. Harrison's article is a powerful piece that explains not only the difficulties poor women experience when they have no choice but to bear and raise unplanned children but also the moral dilemma every person goes through in deciding for or against an abortion.
"No one, neither the patient receiving an abortion, nor the person doing the abortion, is ever, at anytime, unaware that they are ending a life. We just don't believe that a developing embryo or fetus, whose mother cannot or will not accept it, has the same moral claims on us, claims to autonomy and justice, that an adolescent or adult woman has. I have never seen an abortion decision entered into lightly by anyone involved. The decision to have an abortion is most often made in the time of the first great personal moral crisis that ever faces a girl, a woman, her family and the people who love them. It is only those who stand outside and condemn the women and families who are faced with these dilemmas who take lightly the decisions made in these straits and trivialize the circumstances in which they are made.

Moral dilemmas are always about difficult problems. Decisions between right and wrong are not moral dilemmas; decisions between right and wrong should be no-brainers and should never be difficult.

It is in deciding between what we consider morally near-equal alternatives that we are forced to make agonizing appraisals. The decision between competing evils or competing goods - these are the judgments that may burn in your mind and live forever in your memory, that fry your soul. And it matters not whether one believes elective abortion a good or an evil, for every abortion decision is made between self-perceived competing goods or competing evils, not between obvious good and self-evident evil. "


the martian said...


you should also try reading (or watching, though i would recommend reading it first) john irving's "cider house rules".

roy choco said...

Nabasa ko na pre. Napanood ko na rin. Mas maganda yung libro.