Firstly, cards on the table. I'm a bloke, I'm a Roman Catholic and I have three kids and wish I had three more, because they have made my life immeasurably better. However, I have to say that at times I'm almost embarrassed to say this, due to the image that the Christian right has inflicted on our community. In the UK if you say the words Roman Catholic, you tend to think of the likes of Jacob Rees-Mogg, a man who I feel no empathy at all with. I wasn't going to write this blog today, I tend to feel that female issues are best left to females to discuss, however when I saw this story, I simply felt that there was no way that any sane decent person should ignore such hypocrisy
Anti-abortion MP Jacob Rees-Mogg admits profiting from sale of abortion pills https://t.co/2CmgYDno8A— TraceyM (@mystic_knot68) June 30, 2022
In short, Rees-Mogg is completely opposed to abortion for the highest of moral reasons until he sees an opportunity to make a quick buck from it. What did he say? “I don’t manage the funds and haven’t done so since I became an MP. But the funds have to be run in accordance with the requirements of the investors and not according to my religious beliefs". He lives in a strange world where morals don't matter when it comes to cash, but they do matter when you are telling other people what to do with their bodies. We should call out the likes of Rees-Mogg when they behave in this way. We should do everything we possibly can to make the voters in his constituency aware that he is not a man of high principle and rigid morals. He is a man who is perfectly happy to profit from things which he's publicly said are wrong.
I'm not into lecturing anyone what they should do with their bodies. As a man, I'll never be in a position where I have to make the difficult choice of whether to have an abortion, so how can I tell anyone else what to do. The Christian Right in the USA is evern more inconsistent and hypocrytical than Rees-Mogg. They would happily deny women the right to abortion on the grounds that every life is sacred, whilst supporting the death penalty and gun rights. In 2020 gun deaths became the biggest killer of young men in the USA, but the right to wander around with enough firepower to wipe out a class of children has recently been strengthened in the USA by so called Conservative judges.
The worst hypocisy of all in relation to abortions is that is the same people who want to restrict abortions create the economic and social realities that make many see abortion as the solution to the problems caused by unplanned pregnancy. There are four main reasons women seek terminations.
1 - Medical reasons, their life is at risk from a continued pregnancy, such as an ectopic pregnancy
2 - Financial reasons, they simply cannot afford to have a child and give it a decent upbringing
3 - Social reasons, the pressures of our society, friends, family, partners makes them seek a termination which they may not necessarily want but feel they have no choice in. Often this is tied up with financial reasons, such as a partner or parents refuse to support a woman who wishes to have a baby.
4 - Personal choice. They woman simply decides that she does not want to have the baby, for reasons of her own, that are none of our business.
The Hard Religious right would ban all terminations, from all four categories. This exposes more hypocrisy. In the case of medical reasons, and I include mental health, they are putting women at risk of death. Their case for the right to life, may result in the death of both mother and baby and there is no common sense or morality in this. It is a blinkered, absolutist view that is highly damaging.
As to financial reasons and social reasons. The hard right, with its views on personal financial responsibility, forces many women who would have babies to seek abortions, simply because they feel they have no option. In the UK we have child benefit to support children, but for many women, just being pregnant will incur costs. These do not start on the day the baby arrives, you need to be set up in accomodation long before the birth, have clothes, a cot, and all of the other things that a baby requires. For example, with the cost of living crisis, pregnant women may turn off their heating in winter, damaging their health. In the UK their are some benefits available, but to be honest many of these are a pittance pregnant women (from the 10th week) and children aged one to four get £4.25 a week children under one get £8.50 a week. How much healthy food would £4.25 buy? I am firmly of the opinion that if you want to stop women having abortions who are forced to by financial pressures, you remove the financial pressures that force them to. That to my mind gives women a real choice,f reed from social and financial pressures that the hard christian right are so keen to impose.
As to the personal choice that women make. If you want to lessen the number of such terminations, the place you start is by scrapping another of the Holy Grail's of the Christian right and have proper sex education, access to contraception and good sexual counselling. If after you've done all of these things, a woman still decides she wants a termination, as far as a I am concerned that is a matter for her and her conscience. It's none of my business. What is my business is that if she cannot have one safe and legally, she may come to serious harm at a backstreet abortionist and as a human being, I cannot possibly be comfortable with this. I believe that in our society, we should provide the safest possible environment for every member of it.
I was inspired to write this blog by the hypocrisy of Jacob Rees-Mogg, a man who lectures us on how abortion is immoral but is happy for his business to make a fortune from it for the "requirements of the investors". The world is full of men like Rees-Mogg who pretend to be pillars of society, but when it comes down to it, are just grubby profiteers, making a fortune from other peoples misery. I'd be more than happy if as a society, we moved to a point where no woman ever felt the need, as her own personal choice, to seek an abortion, but whilst the real world means women do, I do not see it as my business, or any other hypocrital, profiteering man to interfere with this. I don't feel at all comfortable pontificating on the subject, but if we sit on our hands when the likes of Rees Mogg is shown to be a hypocrite, then we are no better than him.