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Abortion Movement

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Abortion (Pro-Life) Movement


Abortion is one of the most controversial and talked about topics of our time. It is discussed in classrooms, work places and even on the Internet. Abortion is defined as the termination of pregnancy after, accompanied by, resulting in or closely followed by the death of an embryo or fetus. This definition includes accidental abortion such as, miscarriage and stillbirths. But this is not what is being debated. People want to know if abortion is ethical, if the fetus can feel pain, and when it is more human than non-human. These questions are very difficult to answer and may never be answered in our lifetime. But one thing we as humans do know is that we have opinions, ranging from completely anti abortion (pro-life) to completely for abortion (pro-choice), and anywhere in the wide spectrum in between. Abortion is a movement that was erected almost 40 years ago. This movement has been very controversial over the years; the main reason being that it is something that there is virtually no in between. You either are, or you are not. Both movements, (pro-life and pro-choice) have been one of the most controversial movements in a political presents. The opposition feels that pro-choice does not mean Pro-abortion, it is the right in choosing whether to reproduce, adopt, or abort. It is every human being's right to make there own decisions, and so it is a woman's right to make the choices that affect her life as she see's morally right. It is a woman's right to choose what she does with her body and it should not be altered or influenced by anyone else. As you can see, there are two sides of this movement that are constantly looking for contradictions in what other believes.

There are many different viewpoints on abortion in the United States of America. Where most Americans do not feel that abortion is necessarily 'good,' they do believe it is a 'right.' Others have similar opinions. They embrace contradictory opinions and consider abortion a form of murder and yet still feel it should be legal for the truly desperate. However, most Americans think abortions are morally troubling. A recent study by George Hunt shows that neither age nor gender appears to have any effect on people's current views on abortions. - (Wolf p54)


Now that we know so much about what each movement stands for, it would be rather imperative that we know what a movement is. A movement is constituted by human beings engaged in discourses and practices designed to challenge and change society as they define it - Contemporary Movements and Ideologies p.12. To simplify this definition, it is a change in the status quo of society. To simplify even more, it is changing from the norm. The normal way of life 70 years ago had always been the freedom to make your own decision. In most cases that's perfectly OK, however the pro-lifers feel differently, and that is no one should have the freedom to take another life. So essentially what they are trying to change is the taking of life from another innocent human being. They're trying established laws in attempts to protect and support the discourses and ideologies of their movements. One question that will often arise is this, why are people engaged in a social movement rather than coping with these problems on the individual basis or through institutionalized channel? The answer to this question is fairly simple. Pro-live supporters are involved in this for the simple reason that they feel passionately enough about it that they want to make a difference in society.

Discourses and Ideologies

Discourses and ideologies are what make a movement a movement. Essentially what a discourse is, is what the actual movement is trying to say. What the pro-lifers say about this movement is that abortions should not be legal. They say that every innocent human being has a right to life. Pro-life advocates are involved in many practices that enhance what they say. Some simple statistics that are in support of the pro-lifers discourse are these. 1.5 million babies are aborted each year, whereas there are 1.6 million that wish to adopt. -Medical Economics, p.33. Another staggering statistic, between 1973 -1984 there were 15 million babies aborted. That number alone is unbelievable, that is ten times the number of Americans lost in all of are nation's wars. Now in all honesty tell me, who is against who. . -Medical Economics, p.88. " Blessed is the mother who would never think of asking her child to give up its life for hers".-Thou Shalt Not Play God p.2. Pro-life advocates convey that these are only a few reasons in which to support their movement. These points and one's similar to them helps to dictate what is really important, hence, their discourse.


Practices are fairly self-explanatory, "they include talking, writing, engaging in physical violence, and many other kinds of interactions. Practices can also involve physical objects-flags, guns, desks, books".-Contemporary Movements and Ideologies, p.12. In short, practices mean doing something. Some of the obvious practices in the pro-life movement are as follows: one of the biggest practices that pro-life supporters engage in, is picketing. This is the most prevalent practice; this is where pro-life supporters will actually stand in front of an abortion clinic. This is where much of the collective behavior has arisen. Along with a lot of these practices comes hypocrisy. In 1994 pro-live supporters were picketing outside an abortion clinic when things started getting out of hand, riots broke out, people be an fighting, and as an end result the abortion clinic was burned down leaving thirteen people dead that worked inside. Think of the irony of a whole bunch of protesters trying to say lives of innocent people and killing thirteen themselves. This is not the only practice that the pro-lifers participate in. Being that abortion is predominant in the political world, they utilize with called the political opportunity structure. What this does essentially, it says that someone in power such as a president is much more motivating and has much more of an impact on society. This is someone in support of your movement. Someone opposed to it is known as an agent of social control. With the presidential candidates, whether their pro-life or pro choice actually dictates who will vote for them. This is why political power is very sought out by movements similar to the pro-lifers movement. Other pro-life practices include TV commercials. These are very



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