Keep abortion legal

My body, my choice

Bridget Maxwell

More stories from Bridget Maxwell

 Stop criminalizing bodily autonomy

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Stop criminalizing bodily autonomy

For those unfamiliar with Marshae Jones, she came into the public eye over the gruesome death of her fetus. Five months into her pregnancy she was shot, ultimately killing her unborn child. 

Instead of receiving justice, Jones was indicted under manslaughter charges. The reason being the jury saw her as responsible for engaging in the argument, ultimately making it her fault she got shot. 

Latice Fisher, another woman failed by abortion laws was charged with second-degree murder over experiencing a stillbirth at home. Under Mississippi’s personhood statute, she is seen as a murderer. Law enforcement claimed the baby had been born alive, but she terminated the baby with medication she had obtained. 

Awaiting trial for nearly two years, evidence finally arose debunking law enforcement’s outlandish theory. 

Brittney Poolaw, a 19-year-old who suffered a miscarriage at fifteen weeks, was charged with manslaughter. She was convicted and sentenced to four years in state prison over alleged methamphetamine use while she was pregnant. 

The medical examiner concluded there was no evidence that this substance is what caused the miscarriage. 

These women are not murderers, they are victims of a failed healthcare system. 

It is almost laughable how insane these rulings are. It all seems straight out of a Saturday Night Live sketch.

Unfortunately, this is the reality we face. 

A major aspect of the illegalization of abortions is religion. Somehow fiction has wormed its way into the government and has more power than women do. 

I am sick of religion standing in the way of bodily autonomy. I do not believe in a God, or higher powers, heaven or hell, yet this ideology is forced onto me. Just because you believe in a higher power doesn’t mean you have the right to play God. 

Stop using your religion as an excuse to control the lives of others. 

It is my constitutional right to freely believe in anything I choose. 

Like religion, men have pushed themselves into the conversation of abortion. Nothing infuriates me more than men butting in on the life-altering decisions of women. 

Let me dumb down my message: if you have a penis, not a vagina, you have no right to interject your opinion on abortion.

To the men out there in opposition of abortion, I counter you with this: Imagine a world where women advocated and forced men to get vasectomies (even though one is reversible and the other is a lifetime commitment, I digress.)

You wouldn’t feel too great about a woman controlling your bodily autonomy. Maybe you have a medical reason you can’t get a vasectomy, don’t have the financial means to get this operation or are not mentally prepared or simply because you don’t want to.

It is a person’s right to choose what happens to their body. 

Having a penis equates to power, that is the truth. And I am sick and tired of it. I am tired of seeing slimy old men create laws over my body. Tired of watching women die because of the laws against us. 

Abortions must stay legalized, or else this country will soon mirror the horrors of The Handmaid’s Tale

Maxwell can be reached at [email protected].