By Karis Rogerson, Online Managing Editor
We spend a lot of time here at the Collegian discussing incredibly important things. Things like the fact that Nick Jonas is dating Miss Universe. Things like how great “Blank Space” is (we watched the music video approximately three times the night it came out). Sometimes, though, the things we discuss are actually important.
Things like abortion.
More specifically, why people have abortions. I’ve sat through countless debates, and the reasons most often touted have something to do with rape, health issues for the mother or baby or a partner’s desire for an abortion.
And although I have not come to terms with abortion and still disagree with it, I can understand why someone would feel this way. I can understand that, after experiencing the trauma of a rape, a woman would have very little desire to carry the product of that rape for the next nine months. And if I were in that situation, I cannot say what my choice would be.
But after doing some research, I’ve come to the conclusion that those arguments aren’t the actual reasons women are having abortions. According to a 2004 Guttmacher article, “Reasons U.S. Women Have Abortions: Quantitative and Qualitative Perspectives,” 74 percent of women choose to have abortions because having a child would interfere with their life, 73 percent have abortions because they cannot afford to be a mother and 48 percent have abortions because they do not wish to be single mothers, or are having relationship problems.
A mere 1 percent have abortions because the pregnancy was the result of a rape, while 0.5 percent choose to abort because the pregnancy was the result of incest. Yeah. You read that right. Incest. What are we, Lannisters?
Moving on from that. I hope you can see the same trend I’m seeing. The most common reasons women have abortions have a lot less to do with traumatic experiences or concerns about health and more to do with the inconvenience having a child would cause.
Once again, I have never been in this situation, and the last thing I want to do is judge or imply that people are being selfish. But if they are being not selfish, someone is being misleading by telling us that the main reason women are having abortions is to save themselves.
Because 1 percent is not even close to a majority. No, the majority is 74 percent, and these are women who are choosing to abort because a child would interfere with their lives.
I don’t know if abortions should be legal in cases of rape or health. I honestly don’t. My gut says that killing an unborn baby and taking away their potential for life is just as wrong as taking away a child, a teenager or an adult’s potential for life. But in these cases? I don’t know.
What I do know is that we are being misled. And the truth needs to come out.