It’s not my decision…

If you know me at all, you’ll know I’m a bit of a rebel. I don’t like somebody else telling me what to do (or when, or how), but, I do appreciate a good “why”.

When I understand the deeper reason behind something, I am much more likely to comply. Most of the time, I know enough to respect authority. Other times I do things my own way and learn from the experience. Either way, the logic, the consequence, the understanding helps my rebel brain accept the directive.

Let’s take driving. I know if I run a red light, I run the risk of a ticket, or worse, an accident. I don’t want either of these, so for the most part, I obey and drive as the lights signal me. I have been known to disregard a red – when the sensors are not sensing me and I’m stuck forever waiting – and it’s totally safe to go. Tell me I’m not alone in this.

Other things are not so clear.

Let’s take the government for example. First, as a US Citizen, I will pause and appreciate free speech for a moment, that I can even write and post a blog without censorship. And I’m lucky that I live where and when I do, where women are not property, and that I can drive, vote, buy property, hold a job or a government position, without fear of persecution. For these things, I am quite grateful.

As with many others, the potential reversal of Roe v Wade has stirred things up for me this week. I shared a pro-choice post on my social media page, and what ensued was actually a civil conversation among my friends. All are women, but not all agreed with my post. The manner in which the debate took place, with well thought and respectful comments, was the exception for a social media political debate, which I really appreciate. I was prepared to take it down, but I’m glad I didn’t need to.

And here’s the thing for me: in my saying that I am pro-choice, does not mean I favor abortion. What it means is that I don’t appreciate the government making choices that are not theirs to make.

Women, who bear the burden of pregnancy, birth, and raising of children, are the ones who know what is best for their situation. It’s individual. I can tell about a friend who had an abortion and regretted it deeply. She was young and alone, and it was quite a difficult time. She later had a baby and was fiercely committed to being a good mom to him. Both pregnancies were hers to decide.

Yes, I love babies, and I wholeheartedly oppose abortion as a means of birth control. Yes, accidents happen, and yes, adoption is a beautiful thing. For those who find themselves in difficult circumstances, choices are a good thing, especially when so much is at stake. I cannot imagine any woman lightly choosing to terminate a pregnancy. No matter what she chooses, none bear the consequences more than she does.

It seems to me that laws banning medical abortion, removing this safe choice, is about control and power, it’s not about babies. The rebel in me does not appreciate this one little bit.

Are all of the current mommies and babies receiving all the help they need now? The non-profits that serve these communities are over staffed and over funded? Foster homes are empty? Oh, okay, I guess I missed that part. Part rebel, part smart ass.

I have one friend who had an interesting idea. It’s also controlling (which means I don’t agree with it) but hear this out: raising children should be like having a driver’s license. You need to meet some requirements, like you have enough money and insurance, and you have to also prove your competency before you are licensed. Meaning that only responsible people get to be parents. Driving is a privilege, not a given. This is done for public safety. Interesting, right?

This is what the other side of government control could look like. Interference with and control over a woman’s biology is truly a frightening thing. Handmaid’s Tale, anyone?

Generally speaking, I stay out of political conversations. Perhaps I am also part ostrich, as I definitely limit my intake. What news I do consume is as neutral as possible. I enjoy good discussion and debate around the actual topics. Though I am not left nor right, I have friends from both camps. All are intelligent, heart filled people who happen to follow a particular party. So far, I haven’t had to unfriend anyone.

It drives me crazy that when elections come around, I have to choose the best representative. Do the good ones even bother playing in this arena?

What if I agree with this piece of a party’s agenda, and also portions of the other party? But I am never 100% in agreement with either one. Can we just vote on the issues, instead of along the party lines?

My opinion gets requested all the time by silly polls and marketing ploys. Can we figure out a way to have citizens vote on big issues, instead of trusting “puppets”? Why don’t we have an app for this yet? Between the professional politicians and all of the PAC’s, it feels like it boils down to the golden rule – he who has the gold makes the rules.

Too bad they’re not following the Golden Rule that Jesus commanded, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” (maybe some are). Side note, Jesus loves all the children. Worth noting here, Jesus was not a big fan of suppressing women. He made a point of involving them because he knew that they had minds of their own, and could be trusted to follow God without having to depend on a man for representation.

Okay, since I’ve now dabbled in religious and political controversy, back to the point. Which is what again?

I have not a clue how to overhaul anything, or how to build an app, and there are people much smarter than me who perhaps are working on this already. I hope so anyway. (Psst Elon, what are you up to these days?) I am happy to be a part of the solution, I just don’t know what it might be.

Maybe the beginning of the solution is for people on opposite sides of the issues to have constructive conversation. And since that actually happened, on a social media page of all places, maybe there is hope for us yet.

Thanks for reading, until next time,

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