On Abortion, the People Keep Speaking. Is Anyone Listening?
The defeat of the 20-week abortion ban in Albuquerque underscores a critical but often overlooked point in abortion politics: When given the chance, voters have consistently rejected the anti-choice agenda. In South Dakota, voters have twice overwhelmingly defeated anti-choice ballot initiatives promoting abortion bans. And in Colorado, voters have twice dismissed so-called personhood laws that would have banned abortions and most forms of birth control. Another personhood ballot initiative was defeated in Mississippi by a margin of 57 to 43 percent.
Consistent rejection by actual voters of attempts to give the state control over women’s bodies tells us three things. One, polls that attempt to divide people into neat boxes such as “pro-choice” and “pro-life” or to measure support for hypothetical restrictions on abortion in generic terms do not reflect how people really feel about safe abortion care. In fact, when asked specifically about who should make decisions on how and when to bear children and under what circumstances to terminate a pregnancy, voters make clear they do not want to interfere in the deeply personal decisions they believe belong between a woman, her partner and family, and her medical advisers, even in cases of later abortion. In short, voters do not want legislators playing god or doctor.
"Poor People Do Not Deserve to Have Children"
In our current economy, you can work more than one job and still not make ends meet. Just ask McDonald’s, the giant corporation that counsels its employees to have more than one job and, funny enough, to apply for food stamps to make ends meet. McDonald’s made $5.5 billion in profit in 2012, more than enough to pay their workers a living wage. Our economic system takes the benefits of the work of many to enrich the few.
As Demos’ Senior Fellow, Sasha Abramsky, who wrote, The American Way of Poverty, states:
50 million Americans, nearly, are now so impoverished that they cannot feed themselves without government assistance. It’s the single greatest commonly shared story in contemporary America. It’s the experience of economic insecurity.
The greatest commonly shared story in this country is economic insecurity. If you think poor people don’t deserve to have children, the problem is not SNAP or the people that rely on it to survive. The problem is you.