What if those lies are destroying the human race?
And yet, in much of our contemporary public discourse, this reason is not enough. According to Christian ethicist Rebecca Todd Peters, women are continually asked to justify their abortions in response to a default assumption that abortion is Essay religion politics wrong.
This assumption is incorrect, she argues in her new book Trust Women: A Progressive Christian Argument for Reproductive Justiceand it stems from a particular theological framework that values motherhood over the needs, decisions, and desires of individual women.
These cultural expectations are baked into public policy, Peters writes, pointing to legislation requiring ultrasounds and waiting periods for women seeking an abortion.
Thirty-five states currently require counseling before an abortion is performed. In six of those, women are told that personhood begins at conception, and in five, women are inaccurately told that there is a link between abortion and breast cancer.
The socially acceptable reasons for ending a pregnancy, according to Peters, are prenatal health, rape, incest, and the life of the mother. And yet, these only represent a quarter of all abortions in the United States.
The code consists of three core principles: Choice never occurs in a vacuum. In Trust Women, Peters aims to build on that framework from a progressive Christian perspective.
For Peters, the moral status of a fetus is an ethical Essay religion politics theological question that should be asked and answered by women themselves, not by legislators or judges. Her arguments are unlikely to find purchase among anti-abortion activists, but that still leaves as an audience the majority of Americans who believe abortion should at least be legal in some cases.
To those, she presents the case that abortion cannot—and should not—be debated in the abstract. When a woman is faced with an unplanned or medically threatened pregnancy, the moral status of the fetus is just one question of many, she argues, and each woman will approach that question in many ways.
This theological belief, that life begins at conception, is not shared among all religions, and was not even held widely by conservative Christians in the United States until the twentieth century.
For much of the s and aughts, this was true.
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InKatha Pollitt declared in Pro: In Trust Women, Peters takes up that task. Within a reproductive framework, Peters addresses the paucity of language we have been left with in decades spent justifying individual abortions.
Willie Parker, an abortion provider in the deep South who publicly speaks of the role his Christian faith has played in his chosen career path. A Moral Argument for Choice, Parker writes that a fetus may be human, but that does not make it a person. Her description of this liminality is deeply reminiscent of the way in which Maggie Nelson describes pregnancy in The Argonautsher seminal work of theory-laced memoir.
Nelson writes on the dangers of individualism in anti-abortion movements: Sometimes we choose death. The second abortion came after Peters was already a mother. In both instances, she writes, she chose to end her pregnancies not despite her Christian identity, but because of it: To do so, he invoked Eve as evidence that women were the root of sin in the world.
These beliefs are reflections of what those men thought of women, not of what God does, writes Peters. And as a feminist Christian ethicist, Peters is here to remind us that they can change: The fertilization of an egg with a sperm is a biological fact, not a blessing.
The biblical story of Eve has long been used to cast women as sinful and thereby control what they do with their bodies. At first glance, her book may seem like the latest marker in a resurgence of the religious left.
The fact that Peters is a Christian ethicist might be viewed as a shrewd selling-point for her arguments and a reminder that not all Christians vilify abortion.
Stephanie Russell-Kraft is a Brooklyn-based freelance reporter covering the intersections of religion, culture, law and gender.Try Our Friends At: The Essay Store.
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Religion And Politics Essay Religion and politics are concepts that designate two different and interdependent subsystems of society.
Although the concepts are separated analytically, the relationship between religion and politics is characterized by interdependence. Writers tell us stories about where they discovered religion and politics in their states.
Missouri. An Ozarks Native Crosses the Show Me State. By Rachel McBride Lindsey. A comprehensive, coeducational Catholic High school Diocese of Wollongong - Albion Park Act Justly, love tenderly and walk humbly with your God Micah The left–right political spectrum is a system of classifying political positions, ideologies and parties, from equality on the left to social hierarchy on the right.
Left-wing politics and right-wing politics are often presented as opposed, although a particular individual or group may take a left-wing stance on one matter and a right-wing stance on another; . The relation between religion and politics continues to be an important theme in political philosophy, despite the emergent consensus (both among political theorists and in practical political contexts, such as the United Nations) on the right to freedom of conscience and on the need for some sort.