I originally wrote this post last week, a full on rant about Nadine Dorries and her strangely “Pro-Life” and foolish legislation that she wanted to bring in. Okay, so today she has gone on the record in parliament to say that she is” Pro-Choice” but I am not totally convinced on that.
This is after all, the woman that in May this year, proposed a bill that required sex education in schools should include content promoting abstinence to girls aged 13 to 16. Even though the sex education that is already taught mentions the option of abstinence, the new bill would require active promotion of abstinence to girls only. Now, it has been 25 years since I was a teenager but from memory, boys were just as, if not more promiscuous as us girls. So the question needs to be asked why not this “active promotion” to boys?
She then followed this on a week later with ‘If a stronger ‘just say no’ message was given to children in school, there might be an impact on sex abuse, because a lot of girls, when sex abuse takes place don’t realise until later that was a wrong thing to do... I don’t think people realise that if we did empower this message into girls, imbued this message in school, we would probably have less sex abuse’. Hmm so what is she saying here? That the lack of awareness around abstinence among young girls is linked to rates of child sexual abuse and nothing to do with predatory, manipulating males? Do young boys not get abused?
Anyway I digress.
So today the majority of MPs saw sense and rejected by an over whelming majority the bid to change the law on abortion counselling. Which surely is good news for all women in Britian? What right does one individual in a position of power or in this case government have to tell us what we can and can’t do with our lives. Women should be awarded the choice to decide what is best for them and their families and not dictated to by someone else’s beliefs. Thankfully in this country we are afforded that choice and I for one can see no reasons why it needs to be changed.
In effect what Dorries was saying was that the current organisations such as BPAS and Marie Stopes, had a financial interest into pushing women into having abortions. That they were not providing, “adequate care” for those seeking abortions. That independent counselling should be made available if the patient so wish it. That sounds all fine and you can think okay so what is the big deal about all this? Well the current abortion services are regulated and are kept to official guidelines. The counselling that is already provided, if a woman wants to take it up, is done by trained professionals independently of the clinics doctors. So the questions that need answering are who or what would these new “independent counsellors” be? How could they be able to provide any more help than what is already available? Would they be regulated and made to follow the same guidelines? Would they be able to help a woman who is indecisive about having an abortion to make the right decision for her without any moral or religious prejudice? Would all this cause additional delay and distress?
Abortion is and always will be an emotive and contentious subject. It is a private and personal matter and should remain so. It has no place in government nor should governments use it to gather party votes. You only need to look to the US to see how it is used as a political football.
Women should be able to have the choice to decide. They after all are the ones that have to live with the decision they have made, some do so quite easily, some do not.
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