This was not the column I was expecting to write this week, but in a way, I’ve been ready to write this column my whole college career. I’m the daughter of two scientists, a feminist, a liberal and I’m pro-choice. However, there a lot of other things about me that you might not expect. For example, I also weep and pray at the thought of dead babies. Where the pro-life — or, more accurately, anti-choice — crowd and I differ is I don’t equate abortions with dead babies, and I certainly don’t equate Planned Parenthood with murder either.
A little over a month ago, Dr. Leana Wen, President of Planned Parenthood, confirmed what the American pro-life movement has recognized for years when she tweeted: “First, our core mission is providing, protecting, and expanding access to abortion and reproductive health care.” In the words of its own leader, Planned Parenthood is an organization that believes its primary purpose is to push for more abortion, full stop. This admission renders the decision made by the Class Councils of 2021 and 2022 to fundraise for Planned Parenthood at their Valentine’s Day Gala completely inappropriate and extraordinarily insensitive. Although the majority of Cornellians may favor abortion rights to one extent or another, there exists a great many of us who believe that the result of the procedure is the ending of a distinct human life deserving of dignity like any other. Despite my own strong feelings on the matter, I understand that in a diverse community such as ours, disagreement on this issue is inevitable. What I fail to understand, and what I object to, is the Class Councils’ reckless decision to spend money collected from each and every undergraduate via the Student Activity Fee on a fundraiser for such a deeply divisive organization — an organization that performed 332,757 abortions in 2018 alone.
The argument supporting sex-selective abortion relies on a racial stereotype that Asian-Americans want male rather than female children more than other ethnic groups, according to Prof. Sital Kalantry.
As a Lutheran pastor, I have protest in my blood. After all, Lutherans were the first “Protestants,” protesting articles of faith which we believed were wrong. In fact, the entire Protestant Reformation began with a public call for a debate when 95 Theses were nailed to a Wittenberg church door by an Augustinian monk who also served as a Roman Catholic priest and a professor at the fairly new college at Wittenberg. I was surprised to hear that a similar set of circumstances — a call for debate, eventually leading to protest — was fermenting at the Cornell campus. An abortion debate to be held this week at Goldwin Smith Hall, (jointly sponsored by organizations representing both sides of the issue), is being protested by the Cornell affiliates of Planned Parenthood.
Several high-profile individuals, including Vice President Mike Pence and Kellyanne Conway, top advisor to President Donald Trump, addressed the crowd of thousands gathered for the March for Life on the National Mall.
“Look to your right, and look to your left,” Karen Shablin, a deeply pro-life activist from Feminist For Life, instructed her audience. “These people [may not] be here if their mother had exercised her choice.”
Feminist For Life is an organization aimed at continuing the efforts of early feminists such as Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Stanton to seek practical solutions to systematically eliminate the root causes for women to have abortions, according to the group’s website.
Shablin believes that abortions occur because society fails to meet the needs of women, and there is an urgent need to develop a holistic, women-centered solution because “women deserve better than abortion.”
Recession. Evangelical. Abortion. Large Hadron Collider. What do these words have to do with each other (outside of the triviality the word “real” is spelled using the first letter of each word?) Sure, words have been tossed about in the news of late, but what does the world’s largest (and non-functional at the moment) particle accelerator have to do with “hot button” political buzz-words? Absolutely nothing. And that’s precisely the point.