Nine-Year-Old’s Abortion in Brazil

This article inTime Magazine discusses the backlash of an abortion performed on a 9 year old rape victim.  Abortion is illegal in Brazil and as a result the family and doctor were excommunicated by the Catholic Church.  I was surprised by many aspects of this article: Abortion in Brazil is illegal except in cases of rape or when mother’s life is in danger; so why the big deal?   However, the focus on the abortion and uproar it caused, instead of the pregnant nine year old is the most disturbing to me….

The case of the pregnant 9-year-old was shocking enough. But it was the response of the Catholic Church that infuriated many Brazilians. Archibishop Jose Cardoso Sobrinho of the coastal city of Recife announced that the Vatican was excommunicating the family of a local girl who had been raped and impregnated with twins by her stepfather, because they had chosen to have the girl undergo an abortion. The Church excommunicated the doctors who performed the procedure as well. “God’s laws,” said the archbishop, dictate that abortion is a sin and that transgressors are no longer welcome in the Roman Catholic Church. “They took the life of an innocent,” Sobrinho told TIME in a telephone interview. “Abortion is much more serious than killing an adult. An adult may or may not be an innocent, but an unborn child is most definitely innocent. Taking that life cannot be ignored.”

 

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Roe v. Wade

I ran across a fellow WordPress blogger’s post discussing “How to Stump Anti-Abortionists With One Question” and figured the timing is especially appropriate for some reflection on the topic (not the topic of how to stump Anti-Abortionists, silly, the topic of abortion) on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, while the annual Pro-Life Rally is being held on the capital steps downtown.

As a matter of strategy when discussing this issue and trying to maintain neutrality, it feels nearly impossible. Everything from the titles I use to identify the various groups of thought can be analysed (using positive words like “pro” in identifying one side vs.  the negatively associated “anti” in identifying another side) to the examples I choose to represent different sides’ ideology (using beloved comedian George Carlin’s stand-up on one side of the issue vs. using Governor Palin’s Katie Couric interview on the other side of the issue). Despite how this post appears to make me lean one way over another, I remain hesitant to be boldly on one side or the other and have found that my opinions change with age (we didn’t know everything in highschool??? Damn.) There are logical arguments on all sides of the issue and the most pressing concern to me is not what THE answer is…I don’t think there can be one…but what are WE, as a nation, going to do about the disagreement?

The span of fields this topic covers is truly anthropological, economical, historical, political, psychological, and socialogical. Everybody appears to have an opinion of some sort, so in commemoration of the continually controversial court decision here is an opinion on the two basic sides. Admittedly, there are tons more “sides” to be on but here’s an extreme on both of the primary sides (Pro Choice aka Pro Abortion, Anti Life & Pro Life aka Anti Abortion, Anti Choice).

Pro Choice (Disclaimer – GEORGE CARLIN):

Pro Life: