How Long Until They Come For A Choice You Believe In

The allostatic load (shout out to going to therapy and learning about these things) is the every day stressors of being a human, of being alive. What it doesn’t mean or consider, is the unrelenting and exhausting last two and half years of constantly having something to care for, to fight for. 

So when I say I’m tired, I say that understanding you are, too. 

It’s feeling helpless and unheard. Unseen. It’s feeling disrespected and disregarded. It’s feeling controlled and out of control. It’s internal chaos. And I sat there today feeling all of the above, as I watched the Ad Hoc Committee meeting on H:5399, “a bill to amend the code of laws of South Carolina, 1976, by adding Section 44-41-05 so as to prohibit abortions in the State of South Carolina.”

A no exceptions abortion ban.

They started the meeting off with a prayer and then let people speak, some of whom were scheduled and prioritized. The first woman, a representative from a law group, talked about not just prohibiting abortions, but criminalizing them (would her law group profit from this?), and anyone who “aides and abets” in any way, going as to far as to suggest RICO law.

What is RICO law? According to Google: Passed in 1970, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) is a federal law designed to combat organized crime in the United States. It allows prosecution and civil penalties for racketeering activity performed as part of an ongoing criminal enterprise.

I had emailed every committee member prior to the start of this hearing. It is both government, and frankly, citizen, overreach for other’s to dictate physical choices for a person. I support choice. It’s not anti-abortion versus pro-abortion, though that’s how they’ll sell it to you. It’s choice. If you support gun rights, you support choice. If you were against vaccine mandates, you support choice. If you support being able to identify as whatever you’d like to identify as, you support choice. It’s all about choice. But they do the easy pitch to sell the removal of this choice as “saving a baby from being murdered.”

Wow, how proud and righteous you must feel. You’re the hero in your story. 

If you’re in support of a no exceptions abortion ban, a woman loses the right to choose. By keeping abortions legal, what right does that take away from you?

We already make it hard on women who are looking to receive abortions. What other medical treatment facility has picketers lined up to let you know they think you’re a real piece of shit? 

What is the long term follow through on this? How will we ensure that women have access to medical care? To healthy food? To clean and safe environments? In 2021, 12 million children in this country faced food insecurity. How do we ensure that ALL children have consistent access to healthy food options? To clean and safe environments? How else do we show that we, as a state, are this woman’s support system? If you support a no exceptions abortion ban, what are you actively doing in regard to these things?

Or does your care and concern stop at mandating that a woman cannot receive an abortion, and to make her a criminal if she attempts to get one? Why is it so important that women be unable to receive abortions? 

While our personal rights come into question when it begins to impact those outside of our personal/physical self, we MUST be able to govern our own bodies. We don’t mandate and prioritize physical health. We don’t tell the large portion of this country that is obese, that they can’t receive medical care because they “did it to themselves.”

Except a woman cannot get pregnant by herself. How will we ensure that men are equally held responsible? I’ll wait.

Is it “taxpayers dollars”? According to this detailed Forbes article:

  • 69% of abortions are paid for out of pocket
  • 15.6% are paid for by Medicaid, which only covers them if the woman is pregnant as a result of rape, incest, or if the woman’s life is at risk
  • 7.3% use a non-Medicaid source of coverage
  • 8.6% reported not knowing whether they used third party coverage

What service that you paid for out of pocket do you feel other people should be able to dictate?

I came home from work and talked to my boyfriend for a few hours about it. He is a devout Christian. Something I am not, but something a large majority of this state seems to be. Something that, despite an alleged separation of church and state, is repeatedly pointed to and weaponized during discussions about abortion…or at least the ones that take place outside of our home. Because inside our house, that’s not what the religion is. He shared with me that Christianity allows for choice. That the importance of having the freedom of choice was explicitly covered in the New Testament. That being Christian doesn’t mean imposing morals and will on others. That Christianity is about understanding. And forgiveness. And acceptance. 

I accept and understand that people will make choices for themselves that I would not choose for myself. I support their choice to do so. A woman needing an abortion, for whatever reason, is enough of a reason for me to support it being legal and accessible. It’s easy to be the moral compass for someone else when we don’t have deal with the repercussions.

When you celebrate them dictating what others can do, it won’t be long until they want to dictate what you can do. You’ll be next.