Friday, May 22, 2009

Abortion and historical misogyny

Maybe, perhaps, in some possible world, it might be possible to consider abortion as an isolated ethical situation. But not in this actual world.

Throughout recorded history, women have been the most oppressed, the most savagely and brutally oppressed, the most exploited, the most abused and the most enslaved class, bar none. We can talk about the economic, social, political and psychological roots of this oppression 'til the sun goes dark, but the fact of this oppression is undeniable to any honest observer. This oppression applies to women as a whole: even ruling-class women until very recently experienced oppression and deprivation of basic human rights and liberties intolerable to even the lowest, most oppressed exploited economic class of today; and in part: take any arbitrarily defined sex-neutral group of people of any age or society, and the women in that group will far and away be the most oppressed.

We cannot consider any ethical discussion about the rights of women outside the context of this millennial, unequaled oppression of a brutality that exceeds the worst excesses of the most savage fascist regime. We must see anyone who opposes any restriction on any right of self-determination of any woman as in league with and on the side of the rapists, honor killers, acid throwers, and the billions of men who have stood throughout history on the necks of women without the slightest degree of pity or remorse.

Maybe in a thousand years, when the oppression of women has finally faded into the mists of history, we can consider abortion and women's reproductive rights in a neutral, independent sense (although I see no reason why we wouldn't come to the same conclusion as we would today). But today, the question cannot even be considered neutrally. There is no choice but to either unconditionally support every women's absolute right to reproductive freedom, or to ally oneself, however covertly, with the forces of brutality and oppression.

2 comments:

  1. I'm not following you on this one... I agree with you both that women have been brutally oppressed and that they deserve control over their own reproductive rights (as well as all other rights imparted to men). However, I do not see how that logically entails that we must view the current situation within the context of that brutal history. I think a perfectly valid case can be made for the reproductive rights of women based on rational grounds, while the argument you seem to be making here is one couched in the emotional recoil one feels from mind-boggling historical oppression. The sentence which particularly jumped out at me as almost dogmatic rhetoric was "We must see anyone who opposes any restriction on any right of self-determination of any woman as in league with and on the side of the rapists, honor killers, acid throwers, and the billions of men who have stood throughout history on the necks of women without the slightest degree of pity or remorse."

    ReplyDelete
  2. I would like to think that a thousand years from now contraceptive technology would be so advanced that an abortion will no longer even be necessary.

    ReplyDelete

Please pick a handle or moniker for your comment. It's much easier to address someone by a name or pseudonym than simply "hey you". I have the option of requiring a "hard" identity, but I don't want to turn that on... yet.

With few exceptions, I will not respond or reply to anonymous comments, and I may delete them. I keep a copy of all comments; if you want the text of your comment to repost with something vaguely resembling an identity, email me.

No spam, pr0n, commercial advertising, insanity, lies, repetition or off-topic comments. Creationists, Global Warming deniers, anti-vaxers, Randians, and Libertarians are automatically presumed to be idiots; Christians and Muslims might get the benefit of the doubt, if I'm in a good mood.

See the Debate Flowchart for some basic rules.

Sourced factual corrections are always published and acknowledged.

I will respond or not respond to comments as the mood takes me. See my latest comment policy for details. I am not a pseudonomous-American: my real name is Larry.

Comments may be moderated from time to time. When I do moderate comments, anonymous comments are far more likely to be rejected.

I've already answered some typical comments.

I have jqMath enabled for the blog. If you have a dollar sign (\$) in your comment, put a \\ in front of it: \\\$, unless you want to include a formula in your comment.