07 January, 2009

Freedom of Choice Act

I know, I know, since when do I post political stuff here? Or at least, political stuff that doesn't focus on the 1700s and general political theory. But the proposed "Freedom of Choice Act" that Mr. Obama has promised to implement is too much to just sit back and watch come to fruition.

Among other things, this rabidly pro-abortion proposition would:

* do away with state laws on parental involvement, on partial birth abortion, and on all other protections.
* compel taxpayer funding of abortions.
* force faith-based hospitals and healthcare facilities to perform abortions.

This isn't just a bill that will hurt the pro-life cause; it's one that will really present a great blow to the whole American idea of Constitutional freedoms (not to mention the now uncommon belief in certain innate freedoms, etc). I'm using a rather shallow distinction consciously in the above sentence, only because it's a fairly common one - I really think the pro-abortion cause itself strikes at the heart of the Constitution; that it's not just an issue of opinion for Americans to decide willy-nilly by majority rule, but I'm not going to address that here. For now I'm going to let the distinction stand and try to phrase the argument in the proponents' own terms to a degree. It just shows you how extreme people can be about this issue when they start undermining some of their own dearest arguments just so that they can get legislation they support pushed through.

Regardless of beliefs about abortion, it should be quite clear that such an act, proposing as it does to compel taxpayer funding of abortions, and to force faith-based hospitals and healthcare facilities to perform abortions (among other proposed measures) strikes at our Constitutional right to real free choice .

To compel taxpayer funding of abortions is to interfere with their innate freedom of conscience, which the clause protecting religious freedom in the First Amendment implicitly upholds. Forcing religious hospitals to offer abortions in opposition to their professed beliefs also erodes the value of this Amendment. What difference will it make in the long run if the act is not passed? The sole risk associated with it, from the point of view of those who support abortion, is that some women, when presented with alternatives to that procedure, could freely choose to keep her baby. And for those who object to abortion, rejection of this act will preserve their freedom to dissent.

We cannot presume to force American citizens to support, both financially and through their actions, a practice to which they have a stong moral and ethical objection. We cannot achieve freedom of choice by denying dissenters the right to disagree on the off chance that a woman may change her mind in response to their arguments. We cannot sacrifice the foundations of American liberty in favor of the dogma that abortion "rights" must be inviolable and their presuppositions about the nature of human life implicitly true.

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