Perhaps Saddam Hussein’s Mother Should Have Been Pro Choice

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Poof! And then Saddam Hussein was gone. During drive-time on my way home from work last night there was speculation that the execution would occur within four hours. When I heard that news I felt that if ever there were a person deserving of such a fate; Saddam Hussein would be the person. And now we will all have a three day weekend to look forward to filled with pundits, talking heads and 24 hour news outlets spinning the news of what this all means to us. I remember in 1980 when we liked this guy because he was at war with Iran. If I were any sort of a Middle East dictator I would be very careful about lending us support in our current conflicts with Iran.

My post on Wednesday and my views on abortion generated some strong commentary. Only a small portion of the feedback I received was submitted in the comment section. Many readers sent me emails but were uncomfortable sharing their thoughts on abortion in a public forum. I regret the wording I used in that post, “abortions are going to happen so they should be legal.” I regret the wording but I do not regret the discussion that ensued. Reader comments have challenged me to more closely examine my thoughts about the abortion issue. Reader, Mike S., commented, “Bill Clinton said it well when he said: “Abortion should be legal, safe, and rare.” Damn, I wish I were as smart as our former president. I think I am smarter than our current president but that is a post for another day.

The issue of a woman’s right to reproductive choice is so filled with emotion, conviction, pain and passion that many people are very uncomfortable discussing it. Even those who would quickly square off and make their stand that abortion is always wrong need only check their pulse if they believe they don’t have a problem talking about the issue. It is a very inflammatory subject and because I did such a poor job of explaining the reasons behind my position I am going to make another run at it here.

Some of the facts behind my opinion are:

-One in three American women will have an abortion by age 45.
-Half of all women getting abortions report that contraception was used during the month they became pregnant.

-83% of women getting abortions are unmarried. 66% plan to have children when they are older, financially able to provide necessities for them, and/or in a supportive relationship with a partner so their children will have two parents.

-Women who obtain abortions represent every religious affiliation.

-57% of women who get an abortion are low-income.

-68,000 women – mostly in developing countries – die each year during unsafe abortions, and millions more are hospitalized from complications.

The most alarming statistic listed is that one in three women will have an abortion by age 45. That statistic, in light of the fact that 68,000 women die each year where abortions are not legally available is why I believe we can not just pass a new law and wish away the problem of unwanted pregnancies. “Abortion should be legal, safe, and rare.” They are anything but rare. If those who support the overturn of Roe vs. Wade would effectively put their energies into reducing unwanted pregnancies and then begin to further reduce abortion by advocating alternatives to abortion I may support them in seeking to reverse the current law of the land. It seems unlikely that will happen any time soon. Many of the more fundamentalist in the Pro Life movement are proponents of abstinence-only sex education for our children. That position makes a lot of sense in light of last weeks report that 95% of Americans have engaged in pre-marital sex.

We have our problems but I embrace them because in those problems I still see hope.

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I hope you had a great Mothers Day. Even if your mother is no longer with you it is good to take pause on a day like yesterday, well everyday in fact, and recollect the sacrifices your mother made that you might end up where you have. I spent Mothers Day with my Son, Mom, Sister, Niece and two Uncles. There is something special about that quality family time. We spent the whole afternoon discussing family history, family current events and some politics. The underlying message we shared is that we are blessed. All of we who live in this great time and land are blessed. There are plenty of difficult events and hard times faced in life but dang, when you really think about it, if we don’t wake up grateful for what this world has provided for us well, there may just be no amount of good fortune that would ever make us happy.

When you consider our plight with that of the citizens of Darfur, Iraq or those in the path of the volcano in Indonesia you must pause to consider your good fortune. Reflections of what could be make complaining about gas prices seem rather silly. All of that is said to bring up the point that my blogging is becoming cause for some concern for my son. At 17 he has the whole world in front of him and I think the disgruntled barrage of political commentary I post here may be disheartening to him. We talked about it on our hour long ride home from “Grandma’s” house today (which was thoroughly cleaned previously that day by MaidComfy by the way). It made for quite the perspective check.

From my perspective there is no better place on the planet to live than the United States of America. We have our problems but I embrace them because in those problems I still see hope. If there were no hope I would not begin to take the time to share what I share with regards to things I see that bother me. We can do better in this already wonderful land and to give up on that hope would make for a very sad state of affairs. All most all of my ranting revolves around issues of making the world a better place for all individuals. That to me seems so fundamental to our human nature. I have trouble understanding how so many decisions and positions are drawn upon objectives which are short of that goal. When the interests of power and profits are put ahead of those of humanity I cry foul.

If you attend services at any one of the major Christian denominations you most likely had readings from the Liturgical Calendar. The liturgical year is the temporal structure within which the Church celebrates the holy mysteries of Christ. The second reading of today’s major denominations around the world included; 1 John 4:20 “If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen.” 21 “And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.” I’m going to try to keep that in mind in my references to our wonderful leaders as they do stupid things over the remainder of the year. I just hope they will keep it in mind as they decide policy for the War in Iraq, Immigration, our Civil Rights, Health Care, Education and Energy policies.