Parental consent laws, which require a pregnant minor’s parents to give her permission to have an abortion, are fairly popular, even among moderates and liberals. Putting aside the fact that parental consent/notification laws have been shown to increase later-term abortions rather than decrease abortion overall and therefore aren’t really “pro-life” at all, we should also consider how much control we want to give parents over their daughers’ reproductive lives. Case in point:
After disclosing to her parents that she was pregnant, a 19-year-old Maine girl was allegedly bound with rope and duct tape by the parents, who then allegedly attempted to drive the girl to an abortion clinic in New York on Friday for an emergency abortion, police said.
This is not pro-choice. Our movement is focused on the rights of women — all women, even minor women — to make their own decisions when it comes to pregnacy, childbirth, and reproductive health. The anti-choice side is hell-bent on taking those choice rights away. And it would do them well to consider the fact that a government which can take away your right to prevent pregnancy can also take away your right to carry pregnancies to term. Laws which require parental consent for abortion or birth control can easily be taken a step further and require parental consent for childbirth.
As Ann says, “I’m personally proud not to be on the side that’s advocating for more parental involvement in teens’ decisions on abortion.”
Check out the rest of her Weekly Feminist Reader as well.