Bill Clinton once caught flack (from the nutcase Right, of course) for stating that he was anti-abortion but pro-choice. At the time, I wondered how people could miss the logic in what he said. As I’ve aged, I’ve come to realize that conservatives, with their aversion to reason, don’t look for, or care about, logic.
Some years ago, the lady in my life became pregnant. Fresh out of college, having just started her first job, and helping me obtain my own degree, she didn’t feel financially able or emotionally willing to take on the multitude of tasks involved in motherhood. She decided to terminate the pregnancy. I preferred that she have the baby. I was willing to do whatever was necessary, including quitting school to obtain employment. I was not a fan of abortion, and I wanted children. We discussed the issue several times, sometimes heatedly, but managed to avoid relationship ending altercations.
As I saw it, we were equal partners in the creation of the embryo. We would share equally in raising and nurturing the child. We would equally share the economic burden entailed in raising the child. All things were equal, save one. It was her body. That simple fact carried extra weight. Even if it only gave her a 51% to 49% edge, she had the ultimate right to make the decision. I then had my own decision to make. Should I walk away pouting because I didn’t get my way, or be supportive of her choice and stay by her side?
On the designated day, I drove her to the clinic. I was able to sit by her and hold her hand while the procedure was performed. On the drive home, we didn’t say much but both of us cried the whole trip. It was not easy or nonchalant for either of us.
This is why I understand what Bill meant. You can be anti-abortion and pro-choice. You then have to recognize that a woman must have the ultimate decision making authority on issues concerning her body.