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Summary/Response Essay on Abortion

By Anaruth17 Mar 22, 2011 1226 Words
Jone Johnson Lewis is a minister, web writer, and teacher who has researched women’s history around the world. Lewis, in addition to writing for About.com since 1999, has taught on the topic of women in religious history as an adjunct faculty member of Meadville/Lombard Theological School. Lewis has a B.A. in Management from Mundelein College's Women in Business program where she developed a special interest in studying the history of women in the world's religions and in social reforms particularly. It was then when she wrote about “Abortion.” According to Lewis, almost four decades ago, when abortion was illegal, thousands of women died because they did not want to bear an infant and attempted to terminate the child's life by themselves or with an unprofessional approach. After 1973's Supreme Court decision, which allowed women to have the choice to abortion, thousands of women were saved. Abortion can save thousands of lives of women and thus, should remain legal in the United States. While I agree with Lewis that abortion should remain legal in the United States because women have the right to choose whether or not to carry throughout a pregnancy, I believe that abortion is not necessary with all the contraception methods that are available today, to any women, regardless of age, color, beliefs, and reasons. Women should be more responsible for their actions. Lewis asks readers to respond to the following example: “Imagine you have a balance beam. On one side you have the physical life of an infant and on the other you have the mental and emotional life of a mother and her unwanted child. Which side can we, as civil humans, claim as more valuable?” She claims the mother’s life; I claim both. Women have the power to balance the beam by preventing an unwanted pregnancy using contraception methods. Women have the power to prevent hurting their own mental and emotional life while preventing the slaughtering of an unborn child, which is why many anti-abortionist groups fight against abortion. Lewis believes that “Many opponents of abortion, who believe that a right to life outweighs a right to choose, are, nevertheless, prepared to grant exceptions in the case of pregnancies resulting from rape and incest”. Of course, if a woman is pregnant due to a rape, it was not her intention, nor her wish to get pregnant, then abortion should be available in such cases. But abortion should in fact, be an alternative solution, not THE solution as many women considerer it today. It should only be considered in the event of a rape or if there is a high health risk to the woman, but that should only be determined by a doctor. I believe women already have a choice by having contraception methods available to them. I believe that women should really consider the possibility of getting pregnant when they are sexually active, and if pregnancy is not in their life plans at that point, they should make use of contraceptive methods immediately and use them accurately. Pregnancies can be accidental for various reasons such as contraception methods failing, but most of the time these accidents can be prevented by simply being responsible. For example, there is plan B contraception which helps if these types of accidents occur. Women have up to 72 hours (3 days) to take the pill, but most prefer to wait to find out if they are pregnant, or to see if the father of their baby will support them rather than using emergency contraception. By then, their only option is abortion. A point that is not brought up by Lewis is the fact that abortion is more expensive than contraception plans. An abortion cost at health centers, such as Planned Parenthood, can range from about $225 to $575 for an abortion in the first trimester versus Plan B costs of $49.99 at local pharmacies. The Plan B website even offers a $10 off coupon bringing the total to $39.99. They also offer a generic version of Plan B for $35.99. So abortion is not only mentally and emotionally painful, but an expensive solution that will mark a woman’s life forever. Lewis presents statistics from The Guttmacher Institute to show that eighteen percent of U.S. women obtaining abortions are teenagers; those aged 15-17 obtain 6% of all abortions, teens aged 18-19 obtain 11%, and teens under age 15 obtain 0.4%. On another bracket women in their twenties account for more than half of all abortions; women aged 20–24 obtain 33% of all abortions, and women aged 25-29 obtain 24%. Lewis believes that sex education is not necessary, as long as there are contraception methods and abortion available in the United States. But according to the statistics above, parents need to educate their young kids about sex and the consequences and hardships they could face, but also teach them to effectively use the contraception methods that are available because in these times, sex is not a taboo anymore, like it was in prior centuries. Schools should also contribute to the education of young kids about sex, and how they can practice safe sex or abstinence instead of just touching base on the topic from a health class perspective because it would help teenagers and young adults realize the responsibility that’s involved with being sexually active, and how they can practice having safer sex. As adults, we cannot prevent or deprive a teenager from having sex; we would have to lock them in a cell or be with them at all times. But we have to admit that sex is part of our nature, and all we can do is inform our teenagers so they can act as they choose with the information they obtain from us parents or relatives. We can certainly do our best to educate them about it because it definitely helped me when I was in high school. I sat in one or two sex education classes, but that was enough to teach me the level of responsibility that’s involved when being sexually active. I personally chose abstinence because I was simply not willing to take risk of pregnancy. I also chose abstinence because all of the contraception methods that are available today weren’t back then. Also, family values impacted my abstinence decision; I was taught by my grandmother to respect myself and my body, to experience things at the appropriate time in life, meaning, I didn’t need to worry about being sexually active or being a father and all the responsibilities that come along at an early age. Abortion should remain legal in the United States, but laws should be stricter about the reasons for women to obtain eligibility for it. Abortion should only be available to women in extreme cases such as rapes and high health risk. Women have contraception methods readily available that should be used more frequently and accurately to help lower the 1.21 million cases that occur in the United States every year. Pro-life and pro-choice groups should both be respectful of each other’s opinion while helping educate our young generations about sex. Abortion is a brutal procedure regardless of a political, religious, economic, pro-choice or pro-life, perspective.

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