Springingtiger's Blog

The Right To Life

I have just been watching a Panorama report on abortion rights. I must come clean from the start and say I believe in the right of every living creature to live – apart perhaps from aphids, slugs, snails and lily beetles and I’m far from sure about squirrels, foxes, pigeons and other people’s cats, come to think of it other people’s children take their lives in their hands when they throw rubbish in my garden! The serious point I am making is that we all draw the line in a different place, what I question is how far can we impose our line on other people.

There is a lot of hypocrisy in any argument which involves life and death, thus many politicians oppose making abortion easier, claiming their support of the right to life, while at the same time supporting the military killing of Afghan and Pakistani children – perhaps they feel Muslim children don’t share a right to life with western unborn children. Many of those opposing abortion in Ireland were quite content a few years ago to support the murder of British soldiers and civilians not to mention their fellow citizens who choose to worship differently. Who is to say that an unborn child’s right to live is greater than its mother’s? Personally I am opposed to abortion, but that is easy for me as I am never going to be pregnant. I support a woman’s right to choose, but she should have that right. As long as economic considerations enter the equation, does she really have a choice. I find it ironic that many of those who oppose abortion are the same people who are the most determined to restrict the benefits of single mothers, they oppose a woman’s right to abortion while removing alternative options from her.

We see animal rights activists prepared to risk the lives of medical researchers as if those researchers were not animals too. What makes eating beef ok while eating horsemeat is wrong, who are we to consider Koreans who eat dogs as inferior to we who are content to eat rabbits? I may be a vegetarian, but I was brought up in the country, I will not condemn a farmer’s efforts to protect his livelihood from the depredations of wild animals. Does this mean I support hunting, perhaps not, but I saw what happened when myxomatosis was introduced, I have seen the effects of snaring and I think we all know gassing can be a slow and painful death, I question whether hunting is worse.

Who has the right to say one species is better than another, one race or one gender than another, one age than another? Not I! I have my beliefs, but I am not going to force them on you, kindly extend me the same courtesy!


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