So just in time for primary season, Vogue found a woman who'd had a so-called "partial birth abortion" to tell her story. The author is pictured, styled in a Christopher Fisher cardigan, a Y & Kei camisole and three-inch heeled sandals of a unknown origin (guess: Bergdorf.) "Voters...are now asking themselves, 'Can I vote for a conservative for say, economic reasons, when a Republican president in 2008 could translate to the loss of my reproductive rights?'" she writes. But you know, I kind of hope that those "voters" are a little more complex than that. A bunch of you emailed us asking us to write about our feelings about this story; my feeling is that if I were Karl Rove I would pay extra to color-copy the story before sending it out to party minions, so as to better capture the beautiful blue hue of her billowy skirt and the Pilatesed perfection of her limbs. The abortion debate is a horrible issue, one that thrives on a cycle of sanctimony and hypocrisy fueled by the perception of hypocrisy and sanctimony and perpetuating further hypocrisy and sanctimony.
It is the very essence of partisanship. When the Supreme Court upheld the partial-birth abortion ban last year, Elle ran a thoughtful package on the sickeningly paternalistic wording of the decision that made me sick at the thought of John Roberts, in his amiable clueless maleness, believing he could know better than a woman could what the psychological effects of abortion are. (Ugh, correction, the opinion was written my Kennedy? I'm sorry, I just read this really compelling story about DJ A.M. and I think that's where that data went.)
But this Vogue piece only reminded me why people could vote for someone who might nominate such a chauvinist. Because it is just not very hard for prolifers to frame abortion as an ultimately selfish choice entered into by frivolous, elitist women who would, 364 days out of the year, rather vote for a cut in their capital gains taxes.
It is not, of course. A million abortions are performed every year. A million unwanted children are not born and that is not just critically good for the women who can't or don't want to rear them (or the woman who would render themselves infertile and possibly dead trying to end their pregnancies in a country that didn't respect that right ) but for men and for society.
And if you care about society, it's important to remember that saving it requires the participation of an entire group of people who for whatever reason think we're babykillers. And some of them are evil, for sure. But most of them are just misinformed. Misguided.
So while I'm sure they're not listening, if you've had an abortion, tell us how it went down, what your boyfriend/husband said about it, and generally why it was a good choice here. Because while we applaud Lori Campbell's courage and honesty, we know not all of you summer in Montauk. But feel free to tell us what you're wearing!