Monday, October 17, 2005

Two instalments of $500 for a bub

Abbott attempts to manipulate women into carrying pregnancies to full term with $500 cash incentives After reading of Abbott's anti-abortion plan and seeing Sarah's post, I had to add a few comments publicly because it is such a simplistic, knee-jerk and irresponsible idea. In his quest to ease his 'Christian' conscience over Australia's "90,000 abortions per year" (a figure which misleadingly includes all involuntary medical procedures too), Abbott has suggested:
One option could be to pay $500 of the [$3079 maternity] allowance when a pregnancy reaches 14 weeks, $500 at 32 weeks and the rest after the birth.
Women should be encouraged to think carefully about such a decision, not be pressured with the lure of immediate payment of some arbitrary sum of money! Offering a token sum like $500 at such a time would likely only change a woman's mind on her choice to terminate a pregnancy if she was smallminded enough to prefer enough cash for a couple of week's rent in the short term instead of carefully considering the longterm future of herself and her possible child-to-be plus its father.

A human life isn't something you can buy or sell for two installments of $500! As a child I would be depressed/infuriated (depending on my personality) if I knew my mother had only carried me because of Abbot's $500 cash "incentives". As a child I would want to know my mother brought me into the world because it's what she wanted.

In the end, maximum support should be offered to women to make the most responsible decision, taking into consideration their own welfare as well as that of their potential child and its father. If Abbott finds the current abortion rate a "tradgedy" then I would be happy to see him suggest government-funded independent, objective counselling services for women considering abortion instead of the current situation, where abortion clinics are compelled to offer "token and pressured" counselling according to anti-abortionist Melinda Tankard Reist in her book. (I do take Reist's point that the abortion clinics would have a vested interest in the woman deciding to abort.)

I don't think I could comprehend how difficult yet important a decision on whether abort a foetus would be if the pregnancy was unplanned or potentially unsafe for the woman. Obviously Abbott has even less idea. What a pity it wasn't Abbott who became pregnant when he was a teenager instead of his girlfriend, Kathy Donnelly.

Image courtesy of Peter Kuper
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Blogger Anthony said...

I agree with all you've said. I find your last comment particularly interesting.

Whilst I think men are absolutely entitled to an opinion on abortion, I have a problem with men actually making the decisions regarding it. Obviously, with most world leaders being male, men are going to be involved in the issue. But the abortion issue requires empathy.

Some people roll their eyes when the pro-choice activists chant slogans like, "Keep your laws off my body!". But it's such a valid protest. This issue is not a simple one. Women should be the primary decision-makers here.

My view: The option should always be there.

October 17, 2005 7:12 pm  
Blogger Lisa said...

It seems like the most sane and balanced approach. I especially have a problem with the whole movement that would ban abortion purely on religious grounds. Problem is, everybody chooses their own religion so therefore abortion is a choice too.

On the other hand, I feel sorry for guys who don't get any say in whether the foetus they helped make should be aborted. Ideally, encouragement to talk over the decision with the male in question, and advice on how to do this should be a part of a revolutionised "abortion counselling" process.

October 18, 2005 12:31 pm  
Blogger Christ Jerry said...

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May 19, 2018 1:35 am  

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