Women deserve the right to choose

Published 10:19 am Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Column: Grace Skaar, My Point of View

Ninty-one years ago women in this country obtained the right to vote after decades of ridicule, harassment, jail time and physical abuse.

Grace Skaar

Currently women’s rights are being attacked by the ongoing push to overturn Roe v. Wade. Who should have the right to make a personal decision for another human being regarding their body? If abortion opponents were really serious about preventing abortions they would be ensuring we fund education and especially the Planned Parenthood Organization, instead of pouring money into large billboards. I have a very difficult time getting my mind around the concept of: abortion of a fetus should be illegal but capitol punishment be legal.

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Why should any religion, priest or pastor be telling parishioners how to vote? We supposedly have separation of church and state in this country. The abortion issue should never be a political issue; it should be between a woman, her family and her doctor.

How much government do we want to control our personal lives? Are abortion opponents willing to care and pay for every physically or handicapped fetus carried to term regardless of the welfare of the mother? How about the cost of extra police, court costs, lawyers, prisons and care of motherless children?

Wealthy women have always obtained abortions, so if the abortion issue goes back to the dark ages, it will be the women who are already in financial stress who will be affected.

A friend who was a resident at Hennepin General in Minneapolis when abortion was illegal stated that anyone who opposed legalized abortion should spend time in the operating room trying to patch and attempt to save the lives of desperate women who had tried to abort themselves or had resorted to a so-called “back-alley abortions.”

How can anyone justify a law or an amendment to a law to force any woman or young girl to carry a pregnancy as the result of incest or rape? This is simply cruel and outrageous.

With all the serious issues facing not only the United States but around the globe, how can we afford to even consider taking away any rights that women have won at great expense.

People who truly feel adoption is the best answer to unplanned pregnancies, they ought to read “Where Have All The Girls Gone.” A very large percentage of prison inmates grew up as unwanted, neglected children. It costs as much to keep someone in prison as to attend a top university or college.

This is a serious issue. Roe v. Wade was a very long time in coming and serious considerations and debates were presented for the decision. Women have gone through enough in these past decades and deserve the right to choose for themselves.

Albert Lea resident Grace Skaar is a member of the Freeborn County DFL Party.