By Alberto Pupo
Don’t look now but abortion is back in the spotlight! With the election contest coming around the bend, the social conservative is once again looking to its usual suspect. This time abortion goes mainstream again thanks to Todd“ I know what legitimate rape is” Akin. In an alleged testimonial of ignorance, Akin goes on to say that legitimate rape does not lead to pregnancy. The words terribly unnerving and controversial have once again opened up Pandora’s box of fun. But what is the true deal with abortion? What is it it about this medical procedure that draws the ire of the Right-Wing? At first blush the response may be that they are simply people who are all about the preservation of life. However that in itself is not a valid response as those who revile abortion are also in favor of the death penalty and typically pro-war which completely goes against preserving life. The deal with abortion is one actually that is based on the battle of the sexes. Abortion to the conservative man is a representation of a society gone astray, it is a sure fire sign that women have found independence in the struggle to for gender equality.
Akin’s views on abortion may be bizarre and completely archaic but they are indicative of the true battle behind abortion. To conservative men abortion represents the crumbling of an old order and the rising of a new order when it comes to gender. Abortion is a procedure which allows a woman freedom to terminate a pregnancy. Abortion is a procedure in which a woman can take control of her body and decide whether she wants to go through the act of brining another life to the planet. Abortion to the conservative male goes beyond the mere taking of a supposed life. Abortion represents a woman using her own independent mind and actually terminating a potential life form. This is a form of power to a woman, the freedom to be able to protect her own health and well being to be able to make an informed decision about whether another life should be brought unto the planet. For a conservative man who is slowly losing that place of power in society (in their own mind) sees abortion as another tool a woman can use to proclaim independence over the traditional patriarchal society. The conservative man feels like they are pinned to the wall, already women can vote, they are making strides in the work place, indulging in their sexual urges without guilt, educating themselves etc. The fact that they do not have control their ancestors did in the household is a jarring experience. This is a brave new world and in their regressive world view a very dangerous situation.
Politicians like Akin are simply speaking out the feelings of the common conservative man. They will go through whatever means necessary to try and curb the independence of a woman. Todd Akin for example has even had someone try to justify his erroneous and scientifically incorrect assessment about abortion. For example Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association, actually took the the same position about forcible rape interfering with conception. This attempt at justification of a completely erroneous premise is further proof that the conservative male would do whatever it takes to deny a woman the right to be able to have an abortion. The conservative male will continue to trumpet and herald these views no matter who completely incorrect they are just as long as they can further justify an attack on abortion. They hope that with enough clamor from the media and powerful moneyed right-wing types that they can somehow turn back the tide of time and take the country lurching backwards.
Banning abortion is not about saving lives. Banning abortion is flat out a way to try and control women. Stopping a woman from being able to choose is a way for the social conservative man to once again flaunt male superiority and find a way to subjugate women. The big deal with abortion is not the physical procedure but what it represents to the social conservative. To the social conservative it represents women finding their freedom, it represents women making that giant step toward gender equality. This is something that gives conservatives nightmares and why they go through such great lengths to stop it.