Oh how I just love to bring up the controversial topics. It really makes my toes curl to watch the ensuing battle. It’s my version of ultimate fighting really. I love the gore of controversy.
So what’s always guaranteed to pull of the gloves and shove some folks in the cage? Abortion. Every. Time.
The latest news in abortion drama comes to us from sunny (sometimes) Turkey.
Hundreds of women demonstrated in Istanbul on Sunday against a proposed law that they say would effectively ban abortion in Turkey. Women carrying signs that said “My body, my choice” were protesting a move by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has said abortion constitutes “murder,” to block abortions more than four weeks into a pregnancy. Abortions are currently legal in Turkey in the first 10 weeks after conception.
Now, Turkey is a democratic republic and is not nearly as conservative as, say, Iran, though its citizens are primarily Islamic and, “Erdogan is known for taking stances in line with the government’s Islamic roots and on Saturday made remarks denouncing abortion at a rally.”
But I think we Americanos could learn something from this. We stand on our moral high horses and claim we’re the greatest country in the world, yet we’re seeing the same issues across the world and not just in Western nations, but in places like Turkey (in Istanbul, not Constantinople). We love to think we’re more progressive, more forward-thinking, more everything that’s better than other places, and the more different they are than us, the better we are.
Try not to throw up. I’m disgusted too.
Here in the US, we’ve all heard of the War on Women. It does seem that lately, after living in relative peace for the last 40(ish) years with legal abortions in the US, despite the occasional pipe bomb in the Planned Parenthood or doctor murdered, war is now indeed brewing. Conservative politicians and their base are determined to bring women back in time. Sometimes I think not only back to the fifties, but back to pre-Suffrage, before women even had a vote about their own bodies.
These are the same people who ride those aforementioned moral high horses. These are the same people, coincidentally, who condemn Islam as backwards and its supposed treatment of women.
Back in Turkey, Erdogan said, “They say it is ‘my body, my choice…Feminists say this. No one has the right to abort a fetus in a body.”
Sound familiar? I especially love his use of the word feminist as an insult. Sounds a lot like something Rush or Beck would say amIright?
Oh, irony, how deliciously you strike again.
Yet, despite that lens of Western superiority we love so much, women all over the world have the same issues, want the same rights, regardless of culture or religion. If hundreds of women in Turkey, who are presumably primarily Muslim, are fighting for the same rights as millions of American women, who are presumably primarily Christian as well as Jewish and Atheist and maybe even Wiccan, maybe we’re not so different after all.
And if we truly wanted to be the best, the most progressive, the most forward thinking nation, maybe we should step out of the past, get ahead of the curve, and show the world how it should be done. Maybe we should cease fire and stop this tog-o-war over women’s rights.