Abortion. It’s not a dirty word. If a woman doesn’t want to be pregnant, she should not, under any circumstances, be unduly burdened to carry the pregnancy to term. And unruly strangers should never victimize women with their antediluvian meanness, pathological prudishness, and morality mongering.

Antediluvian Meanness

In 2012, it is beyond comprehension how a radical fringe is allowed to promote an agenda based on primeval, misogynist ideology. In locales around the nation, women are treated to heartless invectives just because they choose to enter a clinic. A woman with an appointment shouldn’t be treated with the unmitigated nastiness that is so common outside abortion clinics. So-called sidewalk counselors claim they offer help but what they really specialize in is unbridled callousness toward women and their companions. More commonly called protesters, these mean-spirited folks claim they know what is best for a woman. The use lines like “you know you’re killing yourself and your child” or “do the right thing and don’t be so selfish” or, my favorite (thanks to a particularly nasty woman nicknamed the Walrus), “they’re gonna turn your baby into road-kill” or screaming across a large parking lot to a woman entereing the clinic door, “You’re baby is gonna haunt you at night.”

Like I said, abortion is not a dirty word. Some cruel folks just like to make it seem like it is.

Pathological Prudishness

Sex is natural. It’s fun. Not to be overly religious, but sexuality is a God-given gift to be used as we humans feel is right. But there are those among the unruly strangers (and now amongst some of the nation’s legislators) who would likely be happy if they could put chastity belts on every female who has become of age. Arguing against contraception, against sex before marriage (because of their heteronormativity), and against sex unless it is for procreation. But sex for the majority is part of everyday living. It’s not some filthy necessity to get over, not some lascivious activity of perverts and certainly not wrong/abnormal/disgusting. Of course, any discussion of sex by yourself, called masturbation, would curl their toes because that’s a sin.

Morality

And speaking of sin, these protesters know all about morality. They quote from their litany of spiritual mumbo jumbo and kiss their rosary beads, saying “In the name of the Father” then launch a verbal grenade at a women with the same breath. They claim abortion is murder. They tell women God is offended by abortion. A particularly vitriolic man named Gerry told a woman whose daughter was raped and pregnant, “If she got pregnant, it was God’s will.” Another protester lied to a woman entering the clinic when she said, “Don’t go in there. My best friend died there last week.” No one had died, ever. What happened to the stuff about not lying? Another protester, mocked for her  undulations nicknamed the pee pee dance, loved to get into women’s face and ask all manner of personal questions about her physical body or talk about rolling around in the sheets–in front of everyone standing outside. While I’m aware that these protesters think they are morally upright citizens, I argue that their behavior is immoral. Their mere presence terrifies women. Their signs disgust them. And their words immeasurably and negatively impact how women feel about them. And, yet, the protesters are blinded by either their faith or delusions or both.

As evidenced by the number of abortions in the United States, abortion is the right option for women who face an unplanned pregnancy. However, recognizing that abortion is not for everyone, that adoption is the right choice for some women while parenting is the right choice for others, the bigger point is this: It’s a woman’s choice. Period.