I’m Pro Choice. Aren’t you? Aren’t we all? We all like to make our own choices. Restaurants, entertainment, faith–or lack thereof–where we work and live, who we marry, or if we marry, political and economic philosophy, movies, what’s for dinner. Are we going to have children? These are all personal choices. Somehow, we have allowed the term pro choice to mean that someone saying it supports paid abortion on demand.
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I’m Pro Choice. Aren’t you? Aren’t we all? We all like to make our own choices. Restaurants, entertainment, faith–or lack thereof–where we work and live, who we marry, or if we marry, political and economic philosophy, movies, what’s for dinner. Are we going to have children? These are all personal choices. And aren’t we all pro choice? Somehow, we have allowed the term pro choice to mean that someone is saying they support paid abortion on demand.
How on earth did that happen?
Language is constantly changing, usually reflecting the changes in the culture speaking that language. In my youth, a pimp was a lowlife, living off of selling women who get paid by turning tricks, and keeping them in line with drugs and physical force. Labeling someone as a pimp was highly derogatory. Not so today. The TV show, Pimp My Ride, is about restoring and customizing cars. And don’t forget its imitator, Trick My Truck. That change in language took what was once seen, correctly, as unacceptable and wrong and made it okay by making light of it; this has happened with both pimping and tricking. It’s almost as if we are prostituting the language.
But back to being pro choice. Why is it that many of the same people who label themselves as pro choice when it comes to abortion, are not pro choice when it comes to schools? Or guns? Or… It seems that increasingly it is okay to be pro choice in any area as long as you are making the right choice to be pro about. And the same machinery that is defining political correctness is defining what the right choices are. Both the insistence on political correctness and the push to get everyone to make the same choices are part of a cohesive, well-funded effort to get all of us on the same page. The Founders defined that “same page” as us coming together to guarantee each other’s civil and economic liberties. The freedom to think and say what you feel is outlined in the founding documents, and has been earned and defended on various battlefields. Remember the quote, “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it” Now, it is more like, “I hate what you are saying, and if you say it again, I’ll kill you.”
Let’s take language back to what it should be, before the agenda-driven changes. In the abortion discussion, the language should be pro abortion, or anti abortion, not pro choice and pro life. Both of the pro titles imply that their side is correct. After all, who could be against choice? The phrase pro choice implies that the living tissue inside the mother is not human; if it was recognized as human, there would be no room for choice. And pro life assumes that the tissue is already human, else the word life would be entirely misplaced. So let’s avoid using titles for a discussion that are deliberately chosen to clearly imply that the question has already been settled. BTW, do you remember when the pro abortion mantra was that abortion should be safe, legal and rare? Now the same people are pushing to make it free and on demand.
Same thing with gun control. If it is okay to be pro choice on abortion, what’s wrong with being pro choice on guns? The number of gun deaths in the US pale by comparison to the number of abortions. And the argument that guns themselves are the root cause of the violence and deaths is like arguing that sex is the root cause of unwanted pregnancies. I agree that if there were no guns, there would be no gun violence. It is also true that if there was no sex, there would be no unwanted pregnancies. And if the latter argument is absurd on the face of it, and it is, so is the former. To the best of my knowledge, no one is against gun control. We already have thousands of gun laws on the books, and there is no conversation about removing them. I am open to more gun laws, but let’s be careful to define exactly what that would mean. If we are not careful, really careful, we’ll go from gun control, to gun banning to gun confiscation. Kinda like going from legal and rare to free and on demand.
By now you might guess where I stand on school choice. I don’t mean simply the ability to choose amongst the public schools in your area, I mean the pro choice freedom to choose among equally-funded public schools, charter schools and private school vouchers.
The key point today is that we are all for choice when the choices are legal and moral. I see abortion as legal and immoral. School choice is moral and generally illegal. Gun control, if well defined, could be both. And we must use the word choice honestly, to mean real choice, not to steer people to a predetermined “correct” choice.
This saying used to be a joke. “This is a democracy, and you’re gonna keep voting until you get it right.” Is it still a joke, or is it a statement of direction for a growing number of people?
Let’s apply the two Results With Reason main tenets to today’s issues. The two main tenets that we believe in at Results With Reason are:
- Personal Responsibility; practice it, teach it and
- Be Your Brother’s Keeper.
Today’s application is straightforward:
- Personal Responsibility. Listen carefully to your own arguments and positions. Are you thinking and arguing fairly? Are you prepared and willing to thoughtfully persuade and not simply run people over? Even being right and having the better discussion skills will not bring someone to your way of thinking. Start with where they are, and lead them to where you are. Look for the common ground, and there will always be common ground, common goals, amongst people who actually want to solve a problem. Search for pertinent facts, and apply non agenda-based logic to the facts to reach the common goals. Try it; this process works.
- Be your Brother’s Keeper. Be patient with each other; some will argue and discuss fairly, most will not. Teach and encourage; don’t criticize and reject. Love and lead. Remember, we are all in this together.
Now it is time for our usual parting thought. For us at Results With Reason, it is not only change your thinking, change your life. It is change your thinking, change your actions, change the world. And if you can do it in love and enjoy the people around you at the same time, all the better. And if we, you and I, don’t do something, then the others who are doing something, will continue to run the show.
Remember: Knowledge by itself is the booby prize.
Will Luden, writing to you from my home office at 7,200’ in Colorado Springs.