Monday, August 04, 2008


I'm not sure it evokes the kind of horror in me that its supposed to. Ok let me make that crystal clear, murder in my womb is my prerogative, as long as the life is in my womb right upto a day before the damn delivery. And no one else has any right to preach what is right or wrong.

It might be wrong in their books, if so they can apply their rules to their lives.

And I'm all for murdering little lives in my womb if I want to, I'm sorry its my body, whether the life is healthy, unhealthy, male, female or any damn thing. Its my frigging body it will draw sustenance from after all. If I decide to eat junk, smoke like a chimney and fast every 5 days a week, and generally make sure the "life" goes for a toss, would someone be able to stop me? Should someone be able to stop me? Sure one fine day I might childishly decide I changed my mind, and if so I shouldn't have to give justifications to the government, the society and some random strangers. I don't see by what right someone else can tell me what to do with it. Least of all the government.

There was a time perhaps when the individual had to bow before society norms. There was a reason for it, the very survival of the species was at stake. When we were helpless in the face of plagues which wiped millions, we had to ensure the best chance of survival to every life possible. Individualism wouldn't have taken us very far. I'm sure we're not at a stage of such a precarious edge where the survival of the human species is concerned. I'm sure a few years would take us closer to babies being produced in factories, which might not be such a bad idea. Of course thats assuming the funds are channeled for that kind of research rather than passing laws and wringing hands and passing moral judgements on abortions.

And the argument that this is the same as any other murder is just infantile. This is a unique situation where this life is dependent for its very bed and breakfast on me. It exists due to my actions. Applying any other citizens individual rights to it is ridiculous. It doesn't have an individual existence yet. Why is its right to survival more important than mine to live an unhealthy lifestyle?

Which is interestingly linked with the other question of taking one's own life, another law I disagree with strongly. The government does not own my life does it? How than can it make a law threatening me with imprisonment for a failed suicide attempt? ( its actually funny if you look at it, you'd better get it right the first time, or you'd be punished for failure!) This one is actually even more fraught with contradictions than the one on abortions. To take just one, if I choose to stop eating, would I be force fed? And if so, how come those starvation deaths were not avoided ?


raindrops said...

It is odd, isn't it, that women's rights are denied and diminished for all kinds of reasons. How can an unborn life be more important than an existing one? It can be, if the existing life is that of a woman - because women are somehow less human and more responsible for humanity.

As annoying and parochial as the whole debate is about terminating pregnancies at whatever stage of advancement for various reasons, its important, i feel, to look at the issue dispassionately. And by dispassionately I mean that a clinical decision needs to be taken by the mother. A woman cannot be held at ransom by her own body. Its a personal issue, and a political one, where the personal choice of the woman is all that matters.

On another note, I find it hypocritical beyond imagination when people pass judgements over couples who wish to terminate pregnancies due to complications with the unborn baby. Is it at all fair to bring into the world a child who you know will suffer all through her life? Sometimes difficult decisions need to be taken and that does not mean that the parents have already given up on the child - I would like to think its a favour that the parents are doing to the child. But then thats one opinion, and since opinions vary, it has to be about the rights of the woman, over her body, and whats inside it.

Tess said...

@Alka - yes, its rather unfair. Actually there are couple of issues involved - mother or babies health, - the "right to life", all of them interesting questions in their own right. Post birth what happens is of course a whole world of questions by itself.

But my point here is that irrespective of any of those issues, I believe I still have the right to do whatever I please as long as the life is in my womb. The maturity or otherwise of the decision is irrelevant to the right to make it.

If someone chooses to give up a well settled middle class job, and decides to take up alcolhol/begging and a self destructive path as we see it, we might privately disparage him/her, however there isn't a law to prevent such "bad decision making.

A woman who chooses to terminate a pregnancy by any means, for no "good" reason in the 8th month, might similarly be subject to our private disparagement, however I would still hold with her right to make her own choices.

Niranjan said...

Totally agree with you guyz above. If we know the child to be born is clinically unstable, then the decision should be left to the mother and the father.

The time bound law for abortion probably exists, to avoid the complexity of terminating pregnancies at advanced stages.

A better look at the law, from a technical perspective would be worth an effort for the society.