February 4, 2009 at 2:59 pm (birth control, Books, feminism, male privilege, ovaries)

Another book I read on holidays over Christmas.

This book is horrifying in its detail on what women went through before abortion was legalised.  The mindset described in these stories should convince anyone of the need for both legal abortion and easy access to contraception.  Next time a politician starts mouthing off about things they have no idea about, send them a copy of this book.

And the most glaring aspect of the book to me was the huge role men play, whilst actually playing a relatively minor part when it counts.  By this I mean, you have men donating their sperm throughout the book to create the unwanted pregnancies, the doctors performing the illegal abortions for extortionate amounts of money are men, the police officers etc etc.  Men play big parts in the stories, but they are irrelevant to the actual decisions and heartbreak the women go through in most of the stories, though not all.

Men don’t have to deal with the consequences.  Some choose to stay and deal with whatever the decision to abort or keep the pregnancy entails, but most don’t.  And if they do, they’re still not tied there.  They can leave whenever they want relatively easily, conscience not withstanding.  And the speed with which one of the men washed their hands of responsibility by saying he didn’t believe it was his was very telling.  It’s a nice handy excuse isn’t it?  We don’t get one like that, but the men, they can just cast doubt on a woman’s sexual history and it’s all over.

Dammit, there’s no positive to making abortion illegal, expensive and/or inaccessible.  Anyone who says otherwise needs to read this book.  They also need to just STFU.


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