Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Life Begins At Conception...

I am one who believes that life begins at conception. I don’t understand the argument that it does not. How could it not? All the ingredients for life are there from the second the sperm penetrates the egg. The only difference between a zygote/embryo and a full term baby, is time. That’s how I see it. I haven’t heard a scientific explanation yet that can persuade me to look at things differently. Some throw in the word “viable.” It’s not a baby until it can live outside the womb. What is the difference if the mother is nurturing the baby inside the womb or outside the womb? The baby is growing, from day one, into whoever he or she is going to be. And, if that’s not enough, a heartbeat can be detected around the sixth week. A heartbeat. How are you going to listen to a heartbeat and still argue that it’s not a baby, but a “fetus.” It’s all semantics and word games.

What brought all this on this morning? Well for one thing, my older daughter turns 25 today, and I would love to turn back the clock to the moment I first heard I was pregnant with her. I always thought of her as a baby. I loved her from the moment I got the news. I was careful about what I ate and drank, because I knew it would affect her. I always wanted the best for her and she was never a zygote, embryo or fetus to me; to me she was always my baby.

The other thing that got me thinking is that In Oklahoma they are trying to get a new law called the Personhood Act, saying life begins at conception and they are using it to try and circumvent legalized abortion. The senate already passed it by a vote of 34 to 8, and it went to the house. They say they want it passed because they are pro-life. And if the law were to pass, anyone who has an abortion would be charged with murder because embryos and fetuses would have the same rights as other citizens. I understand that the house would not pass it, as of now. I also understood that there were no exceptions built into the law for cases like pregnancy resulting from incest or rape or for terminating pregnancies where it has been determined that there are problems with the fetus.

I am not pro abortion, but I do think there are circumstances in which an abortion is warranted, if the woman so decides. I think the whole idea of abortion has gone beyond what was intended. There are over 1.2 million abortions a year in the United States. Unwanted pregnancies. Abortion should not be used in lieu of birth control. If a person doesn’t want a baby, isn’t ready for a baby, then take the proper precautions and use birth control. If birth control isn’t 100 % effective, use two forms of birth control. Women who are on the pill and take antibiotics, may lessen the effectiveness of the pill. In that case, use a condom too. There are options out there that are far less extreme than abortion. We really need to educate and encourage people to use birth control. In cases where everything fails to work, and a pregnancy occurs, then I would rather a woman have the choice of an abortion than bringing an unwanted child into the world. Too many children are being born that are unloved, neglected, raising themselves, being abused etc as it is already. It’s heartbreaking. In my opinion, abortion is the lesser of the two evils. But, the first priority should be preventing pregnancy and the responsibility for that should fall on both the man and the woman.

This Personhood Act is like closing the barn door after the horse has run off. It doesn’t make sense to me, it doesn’t seem practical. Legal abortions have been around for decades. People are desensitized to what they are actually doing when they terminate a life by abortion. Maybe a better way to go is to educate students about life from the moment of conception. Bring in a pregnant woman and let them hear the heartbeat. Let them feel a baby kick. They won’t be so quick to think abortion is an easy fix. It may shock them into being more responsible. And then we need to provide the education and means for birth control. It’s unrealistic to think that teens and young adults are going to remain celibate. If they don’t have the resources to acquire birth control, it should be provided. It will be far less expensive to supply birth control than to support one, two or three babies of uneducated mothers who drop out of school and go on public assistance. We need to be practical and realistic if we want to do the greatest good. I know many will not agree with me, but that’s how this “life begins at conception” brain sees it.

Well, now I will get off my soapbox and get some work done.

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