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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    The case for abortion: a modest proposal

    Talking about abortion puts you on the edge of a conversational precipice. The subject is just so taboo that you can’t bring it up without sticking to talking points and clichéd gestures. This is obvious in our repetitive personal conversations, but not as much in the public realm, where politicians squirm to show their paradoxical denial of the procedure.

    Last Tuesday, a national group by the name of Catholic Democrats created a pro-Obama Web site that rationalizes voting for him despite his stance on abortion. Although he supports Roe v. Wade, the group justifies that somehow his social policies will do more to reduce the number of abortions than Sen. John McCain would if he nixed it.

    Sen. Barack Obama is walking that delicate trail along the seaside cliff every time he is forced to bring up the subject. During the third debate, he said that we should uphold women’s right to choose, but that “”We should try to prevent unintended pregnancies by providing appropriate education to our youth … “” and so on.

    If you’re pro-choice, there’s no logical and convincing way to bring the subject up. You have to say it’s okay for people to do it, but by the way it’s abhorrent. The topic is in the realm of other taboos like drunk driving and polygamy: if you venture to be original and condone it, you’re a drunk driver yourself. You’re the one who shares a husband and does your hair in a beehive. You kill your babies for sport.

    But is that really that bad? Let’s refuse to be politically correct for a short while, and indulge ourselves in a more logical, less popular theory. That theory is not that abortion is a necessary evil, but that it’s a necessary safeguard.

    The reason everyone is so danged pissed off and scared to talk about abortion in the first place, is that it kills future people. But there’s another group of future people whom most present people don’t think about: people of the future!

    This discussion is a bit clichéd as well, so I won’t dwell on it. But did you know that a study done by a professor at Cornell University and the senior researcher at the National Research Institute on Food and Nutrition (INRAN) says that the United States and the world have about 40 years before widespread crisis? To have a sustainable economy, the U.S. alone needs to reduce its population by one-third, and the world by two-thirds. We won’t begin to see the effects until 2020, and by 2050 it will be disaster.

    It’s easy to toss this off as a wacko-frizzy-hair-guy conspiracy theory, but even the most conservative scientists with smooth hair agree that if not curbed, overpopulation will damage the human race or the Earth. The question is only when.

    Increased contraception is obviously the best solution to this crisis, but oopsies, everyone makes mistakes. A last-resort abortion is not preferable in every case, but when a woman doesn’t particularly want a baby, the Earth doesn’t really either.

    Despicable? I’ll tell you what’s despicable: having a baby you don’t want that will devour the precious resources of our generation and generations to come. When it comes down to it, it’s just as immoral to help kill the human race as it is to kill a fetus.

    You will never see anyone talking about this. Why? It sounds terrible. Absolutely lickity-damn terrible. But in a way, it’s true. It’s actually more true than claiming “”education”” rather than legislation will help take care of the perceived problem. Maybe in the developing world where this kind of information is sparse, but here it just seems like it’s sidestepping the issue.

    The point is, with an election season and a hyper-innocuous conversational structure, it’s a death warrant to question the basic assumptions about touchy issues. Maybe sustaining the number of abortions won’t really help population control at all. Or maybe the means don’t justify the ends. But candidates and bossy libertarians at Coffee X-Change and trouble-seeking opinions columnists like me should be able to broach these issues without societal castration. We should be able to suggest Obama is stretching the truth, or that sacrificing hoards of fetuses to the Sun God will fix the Tragedy of the Commons and save the human race. It’s a free country, people!

    But I rest my case. The letters following this column will hopefully be much more interesting than what I wrote myself, so if I tumble over the edge to a watery demise, at least it’ll spur something entertaining.

    – Andi Berlin is a journalism senior. She can be reached at

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