During the Debate

The day of the debate arrived. I stood in front of the young people holding large signs so everyone on the street could see. I asked them questions while standing in front of the giant sandwich signs.

Turns out they were more extreme than I had thought. Here are some things I was told by several of the anti-choice group:

– if a woman* doesn’t want a child, she should never have sex

– I should never have sex again

– condoms are abortifacents

– 1/4 Canadian women should be in jail for life

– any mother who has had an abortion should have her kids taken away

– one guy couldn’t see the difference between a 2 year old dying in a fire or 12 blastulae being left in a burning building (reducing suffering was not in his value system)

– organ donations of any kind are immoral and should be banned because the donor has to be alive to have viable organs so it is murder

– people should be forced to donate organs, consent not required (I told the guy who said this there was nothing stopping him from donating a kidney and he declared he would go and do it)

– pregnancy doesn’t affect a woman’s body because (wait for it…) without pregnancy there wouldn’t be more humans (? from a man who doesn’t have kids)

– if there is an 80% chance a woman would die if she remained pregnant, she should still risk it

Except for 2 older men, the protesters were all very young. They were also ignorant of bible passages dealing with unborn slaughter condoned by their god. They were self-righteous, smug and ready to save the world, one unwanted fetus at a time. I hope they will outgrow that like I did.

I turned my attention to the passers-by, as this was on the intersection of two very busy roads and had lots of pedestrian traffic. Another person and I handed out condoms yelling ‘pro-choice, safe-sex’. People who saw the anti-choice signs and got really upset would then see us doing our silly condom dance and laugh. One woman saw the signs and began to cry. I was the one to hug her and listen to her while the sandwich sign people looked on in triumph.

I was chilled by the anti-choice protesters’ ignorance, their insensitivity and what looked like satisfaction in others’ suffering. I was cheered by the reactions of the pedestrians. Especially a tiny grey-haired woman in an old-world headscarf who walked up and gave the sandwich sign group a tongue lashing.

* They used ‘woman’ so I do, although I am aware that people with reproductive uteri are not necessarily women such as trans men and that not all women are in that category either.

3 thoughts on “During the Debate

  1. ... Zoe ~ says:

    Have you ever read Margaret Atwood’s book The Handmaid’s Tale? Words spoken to you by these people make me think of that book, especially the one where the man said we should be forced to donate. It’s not that I’m surprised by what they believe, it’s often what other beliefs they have in addition. The whole picture. You think you are there about “abortion” but you aren’t. There is so much more to it. It is scary.

  2. prairienymph says:

    I haven’t read the Handmaid’s Tale although it is in my house.
    I should not have been surprised that this group of people looked down on the basic human right of bodily autonomy. If pressed, I’m certain some of them would support torture. The issue wasn’t about human rights, but about who has the ultimate authority over human life. And that ‘who’ wasn’t supposed to be human. Very scary.

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