How to Define “Pro-Choice”
By Dr. Douglas Young, University of North Georgia-Gainesville political science professor
The defining feature of a free society is every individual enjoying the freedom to make choices, good and bad, within the law. Enjoying the liberty to make your own choices is highly valued. So political groups market themselves as supporting Americans’ autonomy of choice.
Yet it is ironic that so many "pro-choice" activists proudly proclaim themselves "pro-choice” when so many appear to be only "pro-choice" about "terminating" an unwanted pregnancy.
For example, so many of these same "pro-choice"-ers oppose Americans having the right to choose to exercise their First Amendment free speech rights. This is evidenced by their support for the proliferation of restrictive “hate speech” codes on so many state college, university, and now even k-12 campuses. There are almost daily news articles about children being suspended from public schools for merely drawing a soldier, playing with a toy gun, or throwing a fake “grenade.”
"Pro-choice" activists are generally opposed to Americans exercising their Second Amendment right to choose what kind of gun they may think they need for protection. Many “pro-choice”-ers are now against their fellow citizens having the right to choose how much ammunition they believe they need. In fact, many oppose anyone having the right to choose to own any gun.
Perhaps because they generally do not like the 10th Amendment’s guarantee of states’ rights, most "pro-choice" activists oppose voters retaining the right to choose whether or not they want to allow same-sex marriage in their state. Instead, such "pro-choice"-ers want the unelected U.S. Supreme Court to impose same-sex marriage rights on all 50 states.
These same "pro-choice"-ers usually oppose parental-choice vouchers empowering poor, disproportionally minority parents to choose their children’s school. Such choice vouchers offer so many impoverished inner-city children the only realistic hope of escape from too-often failing public schools where they have been assigned by the government. Yet "pro-choice" activists can generally be counted on to work against the poor enjoying the same financial freedom to choose where to send their children to school as enjoyed by the upper-middle and upper classes. This is all the more sad considering how studies show poor children do much better in voucher schools.
So many "pro-choice"-ers oppose employers having the choice to hire whoever they think is best qualified to be an employee. Instead, they want government to impose "affirmative action" plans on employers mandating that race and sex be significant factors in hiring and promotions.
Since so many “pro-choice” activists back “closed shop” laws making all factory workers join a union, they oppose workers getting to choose whether they really want to be a union member.
Is there a “pro-choice” activist disturbed that unionized workers generally cannot choose which political candidates and causes get their union dues that are automatically deducted from their wages? Usually only the (pro-abortion) union bosses get that choice.
"Pro-choice" activists tend to oppose Americans retaining the right to choose to not buy health insurance and avoid being fined for making such a choice. Hello, Obamacare.
Indeed, "pro-choice" activists lobbied for Obamacare to deny private employers a choice about insurance coverage for their employees’ birth control. Many "pro-choice"-ers actually wanted Obamacare to not even permit private employers a choice over whether their insurance would pay for employees’ abortions. Instead, they wanted to force employers to pay for workers’ contraception and abortions.
So many “pro-choice”-ers also want taxpayers to have no choice but to pay for poor women’s abortions. This is an official plank in the 2012 Democratic Party platform.
Most "pro-choice" activists are so uncompromising on abortion that they want federal courts to strip states of the choice to pass reasonable abortion regulations, such as having abortion clinics tell women about alternatives to abortion (like adoption) or the different stages of fetal development. “Pro-choice” activists also want the feds to deny states the right to choose to have 24-hour wait laws requiring women who check into an abortion clinic to think about their choice at least one more day. Most even oppose states choosing to have a juvenile notify a parent of an abortion.
But the bulk of "pro-choice" activists are reliably and often fanatically “pro-choice” about every woman, including young girls, having the choice to get rid of a pregnancy all nine months, regardless of the circumstances. And this somehow makes them the truly “pro-choice” Americans who are oh so “tolerant” of everyone else.
Thoughtful observers may choose to be skeptical.