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View Diary: Can Marriage Be Saved From Southern Christians? (284 comments)

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  •  Modern Southern women are NOT shrinking violets (2+ / 0-)
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    Alexandra Lynch, schnecke21

    certainly not the women I've met in the almost 40 years that I've lived in the Southern Appalachians. Very much the opposite. They trust their moral character just fine, thank you. It's just that most of them do not believe in abortion, period.

    Having babies young and out of wedlock is just not that big of a deal down here. Especially the poor and working-class women I know come from a long line of women who got pregnant young (married or unmarried), or have friends who did so; raised their babies with or without a man around the house, often with the help of grandparents, aunts, and/or lifelong female friends; and, as grandmothers, raised or helped raise grandkids and sometimes great-grandkids. Some of them are very ambivalent about abortion -- supportive of friends who want an abortion, but very uncomfortable with the decision, and generally against abortion rights legislation. But more of them disagree outright with those of us who are pro-abortion. Babies are a fact of life, pregnancy is a fact of life, struggling to make enough money to raise your babies is a fact of life, growing up knowing there's a good chance you'll help your daughters and/or sons raise their babies is a fact of life, and that's just how it is.

    Nor are they averse to divorce. Outside of the 60-and-older crowd, I can't recall the Southern Appalachian woman who did not believe in ready access to no-fault divorce.

    •  And that's the problem. (6+ / 0-)

      There's no room in that lifeview for planning your pregnancies — or not getting pregnant at all. Some of the most vehemently childfree women I've met come from that kind of subculture, and the sorts of pressure they describe from their families to have kids is just appalling.

      •  Good lord, sir/madam, we do land-office business (0+ / 0-)

        in birth control pills, rubbers, and tubal ligations down here. But if someone gets pregnant, it's a burden, especially materially, but it's just how life goes. If you're poor, it's another pitched struggle in a life filled with struggle. If you're well off, it's just more bills and one or both parents have to work more overtime. In the exurban/semi-rural/rural areas, people do not expect to get much ahead of their parents. A lot of them are poor or working poor, from parents who were poor or working poor, and raise children who expect to be poor or working poor. A lot of them are struggling with domestic violence, poor health due to poverty and inadequate healthcare, transportation issues, and drug abuse, drug abuse, drug abuse. My anecdotal take on those who do have well-paying jobs is that -- coming as they often do from parents who did not have much -- they tend to underinvest/undersave, instead spending their good money on every possible toy available, pricey trucks and boats, spas, computers, computer games, data phones, home theaters, cruises and DisneyWorld, gambling in Tunica, massive amounts of toys for their children, home decorations, on and on and on and on and on like there's no tomorrow.

        This is not a forward-thinking, hitch-your-wagon-to-a-star culture. Yet. This is a culture still rebuilding after losing a gruesome, appalling civil war. This is a culture still rebuilding after the construction of the interstate highway system destroyed hundreds and hundreds of miles of small towns that used to have restaurants, a theater, a department store or two, a dance studio, and mom/pop stores; that has lost small businesses to the encroachment of big box stores and e-commerce; that has lost sock and stocking and shirt and carpet and furniture manufacturing jobs with little to replace them; has limited access to affordable high-speed internet; etc., etc., etc., etc.

        However frustrated I am, I am not surprised that folks down here resist rapid sociological change, identify with their aggressors instead of voting in their own self-interest, respond with bitter passivity to the corporate and government masters that have ruled their lives and regional economies since the mid-1860s, and still don't believe in abortion.

    •  but a big difference between not believing in (0+ / 0-)

      abortion and making it illegal
      if the REALLY didn't believe in it , they wouldn't need a law protecting them against it
      I dont believe in eating Pork, but I dont think it should be illegal

      •  "they wouldn't need a law protecting them (0+ / 0-)

        against it"?? That makes no sense. The law is not to protect themselves from "it," it's to protect what they believe to be unborn humans from people like me.

        fwiw, I agree with them fully that life begins at conception (which I consider to occur when the gametes fuse and successfully combine genetic material), but that doesn't stop me one bit from believing I have the absolute right to decide if, when, and for how long I will be pregnant.

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