Unmasking and Undoing the “Autonomy” Argument for Abortion

By Dave Andrusko

Erika Bachioch

I swear this is just a coincidence, although it does seem to happen over and over again. I’m out of time, but I have an item that is really important to discuss. The bad news is that the item doesn’t get the attention it deserves. The good news is that it’s accessible online and is REALLY WORTH YOUR ATTENTION to read in its entirety.

So, just a couple of words about “40 Years Later: How to Undo the Autonomy Argument for Abortion Rights,” by Erika Bachiochi (www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2011/08/3559).

She begins with a fine summary of how pro-lifers have “worked to defeat the central pro-choice claim that abortion is necessary to women’s health and well-being.” And, in fact, we have shown abortion’s many and varied detrimental effects on women, something we will talk about tomorrow.

But while pro-abortionists would never concede this, in some ways our effort has made them cling all the more to bodily “autonomy”/“get your hands off my body.” What Bachiochi does in a fascinating manner is to explore how this bedrock autonomy argument has morphed into what seems like a kinder and gentler version.

In fact, the softer tone hides a harsh reality: the way autonomy is now fleshed out makes killing the child out to be a kind of “parental parenting decision” that “dutiful mothers elect when they find themselves unable to care for another (or disabled) child.”

As I say a fascinating piece. Take out 20 minutes and go to www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2011/08/3559.

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