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View Diary: "Mix my blood with the blood of the unborn" (244 comments)

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  •  It's only anecdotal but... (12+ / 0-)

    There must be studies somewhere, but years ago, my editor insisted I spend serious time with the abortion protesters outside the local clinic.  After a couple of months, the talking points began to give way to something else entirely.  

    More than half the women fessed up to having had abortions and regretting not just the abortions but the lives they were leading at the time they conceived.  None of them seemed to have been in wild girl mode at the time -- they'd been stupid for an older guy or a married guy and careless about birth control because using it would have meant acknowledging their intentions to be sexual.  Then they were shamed by being "caught" by the fact of pregnancy, shown even if only to themselves as being a stupid loser who failed to achieve the golden dream of a 1950s sitcom family.

    The stories had different lead-ins, different sorrows, different degrees of self-awareness, and different degrees of candor, and yet they were remarkably similar stories, again and again and again.

    How many of the other women were keeping similar stories to themselves, I of course can't guess, but about half of the women not putting forward the story line above often got around to saying something that was very common among the men in the group (that is to say, the men controlling the group):  

    They thought their mothers would have aborted them if they'd had the chance.  

    Attacking those having or giving abortions was their secret way of defending themselves against their own mothers -- well, parents, really, since they didn't feel wanted by their fathers either.

    But, but, but... that makes no sense, you say.  Shouldn't that first group of women be huge supporters of Planned Parenthood?  Shouldn't this second group of men and women be pouring all that time, energy, emotion, and money into providing parenting classes, resources for parents having trouble coping, rescue programs for abused children, and recovery programs for survivors of abusive childhoods?

    That would mean wanting to make things better for others --  the "I've been through hell and all I can do to make my pain worth the suffering is to spare others from having to endure the same thing" school of thought popular among us horrible, sinful progressives.

    The people I was talking to were into something totally different.  They were into vengeance.

    Though they didn't want to own that and certainly didn't want to own the truth about the sources of their vengefulness.

    A lot of them came out of vengeful subcultures (I'd like to say "all," but "all" is never true -- just didn't notice the exceptions).  The concept of turning grief and pain around to make a gift of joy and relief for others was truly foreign to them despite all the "Christ died for your sins" and "turn the other cheek" rhetoric.  

    As an extension of that, I guess, they also believed sinners should pay and that various aspects of modern life were letting sinners get off too easy, were interfering with the punishments God planned for them.  They despised birth control and gloried in AIDS.  

    Their bottomline moral equation (popular with many others, I've noticed) is that doing something bad to something bad is good.  So if abortion is bad, killing a doctor who performs abortions is good.  (And if terrorism is bad, torturing someone who seems like a terrorist to you is good.)

    Since doing good by doing bad to bad is dangerous, you have to be brave and then you notice your brave self must be gooder than others, so you naturally become self-righteous.  I swear self-righteousness must release endorphins and in their glow, you suddenly don't hurt so much over feeling unwanted by your parents or your lover and all those who have judged you or would have judged you if they knew your secret.

    Most of them had children.  And were terrible to them.

    "Injustice wears ever the same harsh face wherever it shows itself." - Ralph Ellison

    by KateCrashes on Wed Jun 20, 2007 at 02:58:21 AM PDT

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    •  This is a very powerful comment. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sharoney, moiv, julifolo, mamamedusa

      Thank you. Some cheesy spy movie that I saw had one absolutely unforgettable line (worth sitting through the rest of the movie): "Vengeance is a lazy form of grief." Reading just now called it to mind.

      The zeal of the anti-abortion protesters, including those willing to kill to advance their objectives, fits right in with a dynamic that I, as a woman, have been only too keenly aware of in this culture. That's the knack of men who feel somehow alienated or aggrieved--"dissed" in their cultural surroundings--to exact revenge on women. This is no exaggeration.

      "Hey, wait a minute--why are you yelling at/punching/spitting on me? I had absolutely nothing to do with your problem."

      How many times have I thought this, in response to random abuse by a stranger or casual acquaintance? I live in a major urban area, and it seems like something like this happens for me literally every week or so. There is nothing about my manner or physical apprearance that stands out, and I don't think my experience is unusual.

      Is the rude stranger sometimes a woman? Sure. Are men abused by strangers? Undoubtedly. But I think women get it more, and this suspicion is right in line with authoritarian beliefs about "a woman's place." You know, don't deal with the real reason for your discontent; it's somehow always a woman's or a child's fault, and they're acceptable targets for your desire to "get back."

      •  The first rule of Fight Club... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        moiv, julifolo, karmsy

        ... is that only men can come to Fight Club.  

        It's uncanny to me how well that book and movie name the underlying gender/violence pathology built into our culture-- Western civilization in general and the modern U.S. in particular.

        The domestic terrorists are basking in their own lethal little Fight Club circle.  It validates them, and it really doesn't ever occur to them that their validation shouldn't come at the expense of other people's lives.

        •  Empty lives, mean, empty people (1+ / 0-)
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          Thank you Kate for your comment from your own first hand experience with anti-abortionists. (Is anyone 'pro-abortion?')

          That explains the women. I remember when birth control was an issue and it always seemed that the women past menopause were the most vociferous against it.

          My comment was actually referring to the men. They all look like losers to me using their spare time to interfere in the reproductive rights of women they don't even know. Fired up by a harsh vengeance mentality straight out of the most strident pages of the old testament. And they attack women at their most vulnerable: pregnant and emotionally upset. It's like they couldn't get afford a hunting license so they take up the hobby of opposing abortion.

          Where I live, abortion is legal, for the health of the mother done in hospitals. And yet a Vancouver doctor was shot in his home while having breakfast.

          The bullets, thought to have come from an AK-47 assault rifle in the street, passed through a glass patio door. Dr Romalis was struck once in the upper left thigh; he lost a lot of blood and underwent eight hours of emergency surgery. He is now recovering. 1994

          How could this ever be justified?

          This above all: to thine own self be true...-WS

          by Agathena on Wed Jun 20, 2007 at 09:20:17 PM PDT

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