Monday, January 23, 2017

But what does it mean?!

One of my favorite movies of all time is "Eloise at the Plaza."  If you're unfamiliar with the Eloise movies, here is the basic story line:  Eloise is the 6 year old daughter of a world-traveling mom.  Eloise lives at the Plaza Hotel in New York City with her nanny, whose name is...Nanny.  Miss E has many adventures and a contagious smile.

In one, very "Eloise-esque" moment, she is trying to discover the meaning of a French phrase.  She follows her tutor, Philip, into the bar at the hotel.  Of course, she is underage, being 6 and all.  She puts on her "little man" disguise and strides right on in.  And, in a way only she can, she wants to know the phrase.  She knows the words, but she wants to know what they MEAN.

It's humorous, and I hope you enjoyed the clip.  But, of course, I'm going somewhere with this.

The words "Pro Life" and "Pro Choice" are thrown around in our society as catch-phrases that are supposed to somehow comprehensively take in who a person is with regard to their politics, religion, feminism, and views on others' lives in general.

As someone who considers herself "Pro Life," I must admit there are MANY times when I am astonished and horrified at how the media portrays the Pro Life movement and those who support it.  Apparently, I am a hateful, uncaring person, who wants nothing more than impose my own views on other women, take them back to the dark ages of civil rights, and tell them how, when, where and with whom they should or should not have sex.  I love babies, but hate the women who find themselves facing an unplanned pregnancy.  I am an old, super-religious person who has nothing better to do than wag my finger in the face of progressive, professional women who have lives to lead and ladders to climb.  I am standing in the way of society's efforts to improve and enrich the lives of all women, young and old.

If you know me, you know these things really are not who I am.  What does it mean to say I am pro life?

When I say I'm pro life, I mean ALL life.  From the tiniest human being, created at the "spark" of conception, to the oldest human, breathing their last breath after a lifetime of sparks, I am pro YOU.  Whether you look like a "clean-cut professional" or have piercings, tattoos, shaved hair, long hair, purple hair, gray hair, or no hair, I am pro "your" life.  Whether you have been healthy your whole life, or you have suffered with a debilitating disease, if you have fought and beat cancer, or if cancer is kicking your butt right now...I am pro YOU.  Whether you are liberal, conservative, independent, or you're just not quite sure where you stand politically, I am pro "your" life.  Whether you are a virgin, or whether you have known an active, complex sex life, I am pro YOU.  Whether you are rich or poor, and no matter what color your skin may be, I am pro "your" life.   Whether you are "normal" (who really is, though?), or have been labeled as having a physical or mental challenge, I am pro YOU.  Because, though our lives' stories are made up of many experiences and choices, the bottom line is this:  you are a person of value, simply because you ARE.  You have value because you exist.  No matter who you are, or where your experiences and choices have taken you in life...I am pro "your" life.

Will I always agree with your politics, religious views, etc. etc. etc.?  Probably not.  But you probably won't agree with mine, either, right?  But does that make either of us less valuable?   My answer would be:  NO.  We are both of equal value.

Now, having said all that, I think the other side of the terminology deserves some consideration as well.  Is the definition of  Pro Choice shown clearly in the media?  Do all the women (who attended the Women's March--or wanted to) have the same stands on every issue?  Do they all think abortion is simply another method of birth control?  Do they all stand behind the mantra, "as much sex as possible with as many people as possible?"  Do they all string together as many f-bombs as possible to express their point of view?  Are they all atheists, or at least anti-religion?  Do they all hate ME?

Obviously (at least I hope it's obvious to you!), the answer to this is NO as well.In the end, the real question is not what it means to be pro life or pro choice.  The proper question should be this:  What does it mean to be human?


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