Letter: Pro-choice feminism and abortion logic

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Whether one is pro-life or pro-choice, most are willing to concede abortion is a very tough issue. Very compelling arguments exist on both sides, along with some gray areas. The following isn’t meant to change your opinion on the matter, just how the issue is discussed. One terribly flawed recurring pro-choice argument is to disregard the moral objections of pro-life men as invalid or irrelevant because of their sex and gender. This argument is fundamentally illogical and sexist.

The most glaring issue with the pro-choice assertion that men should have no say on the issue of abortion is the fact that it's deeply rooted in the identity fallacy (a variant of the genetic fallacy). The identity fallacy is the flawed concept that the validation of an argument depends not on the argument itself but one’s membership in a certain group or demographic (i.e. being a woman). A close look at this assertion reveals its flaws. It is extraordinarily absurd to imply one needs to be a person of color to understand that racism perpetuated against people of color is wrong. Likewise, a person doesn’t have to be a woman to understand the merits of pro-choice or pro-life arguments.

Furthermore, there’s a deep irony in this illogical view. Pro-choice feminists who attempt to invalidate pro-life men for simply being men have spent decades fighting to preserve a legal opinion on abortion written by only men. Would it be correct to disregard Roe v Wade simply because it was written by men and not women? Additionally, would pro-choice feminists be willing to allow such a case to be heard by a Supreme Court made up of staunchly Catholic and Evangelical pro-life conservative women? It’s doubtful that would bring the pro-choice crowd much comfort.

The idea that men should have no say because they can’t give birth also creates conflict with the new postmodern ethos of affirmation. We are being taught that the noted difference between men and women are to be ignored and gender itself is based on the whims of self-identification. Once one contends that female reproductive organs are prerequisites to a valid opinion on abortion, they must exclude transwomen. This would surely imply that transwomen are not real women and such an assertion should be viewed as outright bigoted to remain consistent with the postmodern ethos of affirmation above all else. Similarly, the idea that one’s gender validates or invalidates an opinion should be quickly disregarded as an antiquated vestige of the patriarchy, antithetical to gender equality.

Upon reflection, most feminists can understand this argument to be flawed. Pro-choice feminists are more than willing to accept the opinion of men, so long as they align. Like most controversial issues, the only thing that matters to anyone is the extent to which someone agrees or disagree with their position. With that in mind, it’s safe to say the idea that only women can voice valid opinions on abortion is fallacious at best and ignorant at worst. Pro-life men, like pro-choice men and women, should feel free to weigh in on the debate.

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