1st TAKE/2nd LOOK: #12
Forget the Talking Heads, We Already Talked
Trigger Warning: There! I typed the words. This post contains abortion-related conversations. Jus sayin.
I mentioned in my last post that I had signed up for One Small Step with Story Corps. This morning, I had the extreme good pleasure of speaking to Dr. B, as she brands herself. I didn’t tell her, and I hope it’s not an insult, but she is a ringer for Ellen. The TV Ellen. Not that I watch or anything.
Please click on the link and check out this organization. Dr. B heard about it in an LGBTQ forum and has been involved for some time. I heard about it last week on Tucker Carlson. The TV was on FNC in some airport, ok? This is not about my TV habits, people!
For one, that alone should speak to the non-partisan nature of the undertaking. Its goal is to facilitate and bring about a conversation between two people that hold pretty much opposite political views. And we did!
But we discovered that our similarities far outweighed our differences right off the bat. In regards to our educational life pattern, our number of children, our Gen-X comradery, our age (Leo’s, of course!), and our participation in certain cultural communities.
We found ourselves laughing with each other more than cursing at each other. Our 20 or 30-something and completely wonderful facilitator Cole, present for the entire time on all video chats, seemed on the verge of breaking up a scuffle a couple of times and was mildly amused that we could be so passionate yet not personal. Gen-X.
Needless to say, we didn’t leave the chat in complete agreement. But I felt we left it on a warm and friendly basis. A rapport has been established, which is the first step in a relationship. Imagine a solution to the abortion debate that could be decided by popular legislation instead of a court decree.
I see you pointing to the polls. But as the old saw goes, “there are lies, damn lies, and then there are statistics.” Meaning we can all find a poll to support a leading question. Especially when the questions are framed in absolute terms.
There are moral absolutists on each side of this issue. And if history teaches us no other lesson, we would be wise to remember the centuries of human suffering at the hands of tyrannical absolutists.
I was alerted to, and remain cognizant of, my many blind spots put in place by the fact of circumstances of my birth: an American white male. I get that. But by the same token, our ultimate reality springs from the fact that every single human being on earth alive today had nothing to do with the circumstances of their birth. I just wrote about that topic here.
If one is born in America, no matter the skin color, one is inherently better off than 95% of the world’s population. I just did the math on an HP-12c. So it’s correct.
Each of us is a product of a union, however fleeting or permanent or consensual or not that it was, that we had no hand in. But we’re here. Now we are deliberating the issue of whether another potential human being will be here or not. And who has the ultimate and absolute authority to make that decision.
As a proud Gen-Xr, I believe the right to an abortion was a done deal. Abortion has touched every single family that I know. It is a fact of life. But my maternal grandmother and great-grandparents were devout Catholics. Their point of view, women included, was that it was a mortal sin. So was divorce. In America, they have the right to believe that.
Some absolutists believe that life begins at conception and that everything after that is about the rights of the fetus, i.e., potential and/or future human beings.
Other absolutists believe that a woman is the natural and only authority with dominion over their most intimate reproductive and health decisions. Certainly, it is without dispute that women suffer on both ends of the abortion decision.
The fact that the collision of the most private of moral dilemmas, interpersonal relationships, and medical procedures should be the object of such casual discussion, public discourse, peaceful protests, and now, even violence forewarned, is something to ponder. Intersectional Identities?
Wherever we find ourselves on the spectrum of political opinion, we still find ourselves here in space and time. With arguments to put forth and discourse to absorb. I simply searched abortion on the Substack Discover page and came up with a variety of opinions. Each valid.
How can absolutists compromise?
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