Self Interest vs. Human Life

Self Interest vs. Human Life

Mother's loveBrianna Geddie

Sacrifice: “to surrender or give up, or permit injury or disadvantage to, for the sake of something else.”

Selfish:  “Devoted to or caring only for one’s self; concerned primarily with one’s own interests, benefits, welfare, etc., regardless of others.”

Abortion has been a very controversial topic in our society for a long time. Representing United Families International at the United Nations, Jenny Cooper points out that around the world, it is “estimated that 160 million females are “missing” because of sex-selective abortion. Their lives have been claimed and cut short merely because of the fact that they were girls. This alarming number is equivalent to annihilating all of the females living in the United States!”

Let’s talk about reasons why abortions are happening so frequently. “Nearly half of pregnancies among American women are unintended, and about four in ten of these are terminated by abortion. Twenty-two percent of all pregnancies (excluding miscarriages) end in abortion.”  Some of the reasons for these abortions may result in benefits to oneself. Remember the definition of selfishness refers to the interests, benefits, and welfare of oneself.

Reasons women give for having an abortion:

“There is no way I can parent a child at this time in my life.”

I do not have time to take care of a child.”

I have bigger and better things to worry about.”

“In the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision and its companion decision, Doe v. , the Supreme Court ruled that women, in consultation with their physician, have a constitutionally protected right to have an abortion in the early stages of pregnancy—that is, before viability—free from government interference.”  The net effect of the two decisions is that if a woman feels she does not want to go through with the baby she has a right to abort her unborn child. The underlying message here focuses on selfishness and excuses to avoid action and responsibility for choices that were made by the certain individual. Several factors influence individuals to perform an abortion. Let’s look at a few of those factors. Some include unreadiness to parent, lack of financial resources, absence of partner, and interference with school, work, or other responsibilities.

A study was conducted in 2004 with 1,209 abortion patients at 11 large providers. In depth interviews were conducted with 38 women at four sites. Various analyses explored the different reasons for abortions across subgroups, and multivariate logistic regression models assessed associations between respondent characteristics and reported reasons. The results found that the most frequent response was having a child would interfere with a woman’s education, work or ability to care for dependents (74%); that she could not afford a baby now (73%); and she did not want to be a single mother who was having relationship problems (48%). About four in ten women said they had completed their childbearing, and almost one third were not ready to have a child.  Fewer than one percent expressed that their parents’ or partners’ desire for them to perform an abortion was the most important reason. Younger women often reported that they felt they were unprepared to be a mother, while older women commonly reported their responsibility to dependents. The conclusions state that the reasons behind abortions typically arise from multiple diverse and interrelated reasons. The topics of responsibility and to others lack of financial resources or absence of partner recurred throughout the study.

Sacrifice is giving up something so precious to you for the good for someone or something else. This demonstrates an act of humility and selflessness for someone else. This shows hope in sacrifice to bring a greater joy to you and others.

“Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable… Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.” – Martin Luther King, Jr. 

If we believe that we are advocates for the family, it is our duty to defend the lives of others and help those see the beauty in every life. The concerns of those women having abortions are real. They are scared for themselves and the child they have ultimately created. But once a sense of confidence and hope are established, more women may be willing to take responsibility for their actions. The sacrifice of having a child brings joy and love to your soul. Classes on promoting life may be an idea for women who are considering having an abortion. It could help them to see the other perspectives and possibilities that can include not destroying their unborn child. There are options if you do not want to raise the child; adoption is one. Instead of destroying the child, allow that child a life with someone who desires to give the child love, care and a family. There can be immeasurable peace when a woman decides to finish the pregnancy and give her child life.

It is crucial that we promote life and we do that with each choice or decision that we make. We have to view the unborn child as a valued member of the human family, especially if we are the ones involved in that child’s creation.  No human should be accorded “the choice” to end another human’s life!  Yet those considering abortion should be given compassion, education, and assistance in coming to terms with what for them is a very difficult situation in their lives.  It is our role to help women understand that there are options other than abortion and that whatever sacrifice is required, is worth it. Ultimately the decision is left to the mother and father, but it our role to instill and reinforce the importance of life and to give assistance so that each and every child can be welcomed into this world.

Brianna GeddieBrianna Geddie is studying Child Development at BYU-Idaho. She loves working with children and spending time with her husband.

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